The Oak and the Linden

The Oak and the Linden

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  • One day, Zeus and his son Hermes decided to disguise themselves as poor beggars.  But everyone they met turned them down.
  • At the final house, they went to a small cottage, where they met an old and poor couple named Baucis and Philemon.  Philemon told both of them to come inside to partake in whatever little food they had.
  • They were invited in to eat a small feast of radishes, eggs, stew, and cheese.  Philemon also brought out a small bottle of wine.
  • As everyone was eating their fill, the two men kept drinking their wine, but no matter how many times they poured them more, the bottle stayed filled.  Baucis caught on and eventually kneeled down, realizing that their guests were gods.  They offered them a more filling feast, but they denied.
  • They took them to a nearby hill to tell them that no one except them had shown them kindness.  They then filled the whole town with water, killing everything in it.  A palace arose out of the water, and they were to live there from now on. They asked if they could do anything else and they asked to be priests and for the palace to be their temple.  He accepted, but asked if they truly wanted anything, and they replied with to die on the same day so the other wouldnt have to live without them.
  • Many years later, when Philemon and Baucis were very old and content, Baucis started to notice leaves coming out of her hair.  Philemon looked down at his hands and his skin was starting to turn brown.  As they both realised that their time had come, they held hands, and transformed into trees.
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