St. Michael's Mount, that impressive castle-crowned pyramid of rock that
rises from the waters of Mounts Bay, was not always an island. In fact,
it is not always an island now. At low tide you may reach it from the
mainland along a causeway. But once upon a time the Mount stood in the
midst of a forest; its old name, "Caraclowse in Cowse," means "the Grey
Rock in the Wood," and that was at the time when the Giants built it.

Cormoran was one of the Giants; he lived in this great western forest,
which is now swallowed up by the sea, and there he determined to erect
for himself a stronghold that should rise well above the trees. So he
set to work to collect huge stones from the neighbouring granite hills,
and his new home grew apace.

But the labour of searching far afield for suitable stones, and of
carrying them to the forest and piling them one upon another, was a
wearying task even for a giant, and as Cormoran grew tired he forced his
unfortunate Giantess wife, Cormelian, to help him in his task, and to
her he gave the most toilsome of the labour.

Was there a gigantic boulder in a far part of the Duchy that Cormoran
coveted, unhappy Cormelian was sent to fetch it; and she, like a dutiful
wife, never complained, but went meekly about her work, collecting the
finest and biggest stones and carrying them back to the forest in her
apron. Meanwhile Cormoran, growing more lazy, spent much of his time
in sleep, waking up only very occasionally to admonish his wife or to
incite her to greater efforts.

One day, when Cormelian had been twice as far as the Bodmin moors to
fetch some particularly fine stones Cormoran had seen, and was about
to set off on a third journey, she, noticing her husband fast asleep,
thought to save herself another weary walk by going only a short
distance and breaking off some huge masses of greenstone rock which
existed in the neighbourhood and placing them upon the nearly completed
Mount without being seen. Although Cormoran had insisted that the stone
be grey, Cormelian could see no reason why one stone was not as good as

So, carrying out her plan, she was returning with the first enormous
piece of greenstone, walking ever so carefully so as not to awaken
Cormoran, when, unfortunately, he did awake. He flew into a terrible
rage on seeing how his wife was trying to delude him, and, rising with
a dreadful threat, he ran after her, overtaking her just before she
reached the Mount.

Scolding her for her deceit, he gave her a terrific box on the ear. Poor
Cormelian, in her fright, dropped the huge greenstone she was carrying,
and ran sobbing from her angry husband to seek refuge in the deepest
part of the forest; and it was not until Cormoran himself had finished
building the Mount that she would return to him.

And to-day, as you walk along the causeway from Marazion to St.
Michael's Mount, you will see on your right hand an isolated mass of
greenstone, the very rock that Cormelian dropped. It is called Chapel
Rock now, because years and years afterwards, when pious monks lived
upon the summit of the Mount and devout pilgrims used to visit their
church to pay homage at a shrine, they built a little chapel, upon poor
Cormelian's green rock, of which only a few stones now remain.

You may visit Chapel Rock and St. Michael's Mount from Penzance, which
is between three and four miles away and is the ideal centre for some of
the most wonderful scenery in Cornwall. Both Land's End and the Lizard
are within easy reach of this, England's westernmost town, where a
climate that rivals that of the Mediterranean may be enjoyed in the
depth of winter. Semi-tropical flowers and trees bloom in the open,
and in February and early March--in what is, in fact, winter weather
for those in less favoured parts--Penzance and its neighbourhood are
surrounded by glorious spring flowers, the growing of which forms a
very considerable industry.

London and our other big towns often get their first glimpse of coming
spring in the narcissi and wallflowers grown around the shores of Mounts
Bay, and packed off to the grim cold cities only a few hours away.

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Czytelnia - treści losowe

Główna Czytelnia Literatura Legendy THE GIANTS WHO BUILT THE MOUNT
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