Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 14, 1903.djvu/218

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iq6 Reviews.

aspect of the Grail be an essential attribute of the Vessel of the Last Supper and not the result of contamination with the magic talisman of the Celtic gods, should the Grail legend only appear when and where it does, why has it only developed within the British sphere of influence ? No explanation of the Grail problem which does not explain this fact can be considered satisfactory.

In the last pages of his pamphlet Dr. Staerk essays also to connect the Grail Quest with Babylonian mythology ; he seeks in the Adapa legend an explanation of that mysterious feature, the omitted question, which has puzzled all investigators of the Grail romances. The explanation is hinted at rather than urged, and as the author does not withdraw his strongly expressed opinion in favour of the Celtic nature of the Perceval Saga (i.e., of the Grail Quest) he must be assumed to attach little importance to it. I do not care to discuss it until it is put forward more seriously, but will only say that the parallel upon which Dr. Staerk relies does not strike me as close ; nor, were it far closer, am I disposed at present to regard it as aught else but a curious coincidence.

Alfred Nutt.

Die Sage vom Herzog von Luxemburg und die historische

PERSONLICHKEIT IHRES TRACERS. Von Dr. AnTON KiPPEN-

BERG. Mit 2 voUbildern und 1 1 abbildungen im text. 8vo. Leipzig. 1 90 1.

Dr. Kippenberg has in a well-printed, well-illustrated, but un- indexed volume given a history of the Luxemburg-legend, an off- shoot of the Faust-legend. The great marshal who played so prominent a part in the political and social world of his time, became a very short time after his death, and even before it, a person of mystery endowed by the Devil with magic powers. His deformity, his luck in battles, his love adventures, his favour at Court, his cynicism and impiety, were thus explained ; nor did his importance cease with his life, for he was believed to have arranged with the fiend that he should reappear in ghostly form to his royal master and to his last mistress. Defoe knew the story, which was soon spread about in French, Dutch, Danish, and German books, and lost nothing by repetition, attaining its fullest form in the numerous German editions of the story that