Our Little Danish Cousin

Our Little Danish Cousin

Author:
Luna May Ennis
Author:
Luna May Ennis
Format:
epub
language:
English

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Author: Ennis, Luna May
Children — Denmark — Juvenile literature
Our Little Danish Cousin


Our Little Danish Cousin


THE
Little Cousin Series

(TRADE MARK)

Each volume illustrated with six or more full page plates in
tint. Cloth, 12mo, with decorative cover
per volume, 60 cents

LIST OF TITLES

By Mary Hazelton Wade, Mary F.
Nixon-Roulet, Blanche McManus,
Clara V. Winlow, Florence E.
Mendel and Others

Our Little African Cousin
Our Little Alaskan Cousin
Our Little Arabian Cousin
Our Little Argentine Cousin
Our Little Armenian Cousin
Our Little Australian Cousin
Our Little Austrian Cousin
Our Little Belgian Cousin
Our Little Bohemian Cousin
Our Little Boer Cousin
Our Little Brazilian Cousin
Our Little Bulgarian Cousin
Our Little Canadian Cousin
Our Little Chinese Cousin
Our Little Cossack Cousin
Our Little Cuban Cousin
Our Little Danish Cousin
Our Little Dutch Cousin
Our Little Egyptian Cousin
Our Little English Cousin
Our Little Eskimo Cousin
Our Little French Cousin
Our Little German Cousin
Our Little Grecian Cousin
Our Little Hawaiian Cousin
Our Little Hindu Cousin
Our Little Hungarian Cousin
Our Little Indian Cousin
Our Little Irish Cousin
Our Little Italian Cousin
Our Little Japanese Cousin
Our Little Jewish Cousin
Our Little Korean Cousin
Our Little Malayan (Brown) Cousin
Our Little Mexican Cousin
Our Little Norwegian Cousin
Our Little Panama Cousin
Our Little Persian Cousin
Our Little Philippine Cousin
Our Little Polish Cousin
Our Little Porto Rican Cousin
Our Little Portuguese Cousin
Our Little Russian Cousin
Our Little Scotch Cousin
Our Little Servian Cousin
Our Little Siamese Cousin
Our Little Spanish Cousin
Our Little Swedish Cousin
Our Little Swiss Cousin
Our Little Turkish Cousin

THE PAGE COMPANY
53 Beacon Street,             Boston, Mass.


Little children were playing about the statued form of their beloved story-teller, Hans Christian Andersen
(see page 52)


OUR LITTLE
DANISH COUSIN

By
Luna May Innes

Illustrated by
Elizabeth Otis

Boston
The Page Company
Publishers


Copyright, 1912,
By L. C. Page & Company
(INCORPORATED)

All rights reserved

First Impression, June, 1912
Second Impression, January, 1917


TO MY LITTLE NEPHEW

Graeme Lorimer

ON HIS NINTH BIRTHDAY


Preface

Denmark means “Land of dark woods.” Although one of the smallest states of Europe, the little kingdom of Denmark holds a very large place in the world’s history, having supplied rulers for many of the countries of Europe.
The Dane loves his beautiful country, the land of Thorvaldsen and of Hans Christian Andersen, of blue lakes, and “fairy-tale” castles.
Since the days of Leif and Biarne, Denmark and the United States have been allied, and therefore I feel sure that the children of America will be interested in the story of their little Danish Cousin.

I wish to express grateful acknowledgment to Hr. Georg Beck, Consul for Denmark in Chicago; also to Mr. Haakon Arntz, and to Mr. and Mrs. Oscar Andersen, for generous information given in regard to the manners and customs of the Danish people.
Luna May Innes.
Chicago, February, 1912.


Contents

CHAPTER PAGE
  Preface vii
I. The Distinguished Visitor 1
II. Copenhagen 22
III. “Hurrah for King Frederik!” 48
IV. Up the Sound to Hamlet’s Castle 59
V. “Fairy-tale” Castles and Palaces 73
VI. The Legend of the Sacred “Dannebrog” 82
VII. The Story of the Danish “Ahlhede” 100
VIII. Skagen 117
IX. A Danish Peasant Wedding 134
X. Jul-tide at Grandmother Ingemann’s 144

List of Illustrations

  PAGE
Little children were playing about the statued form of their beloved story-teller, Hans Christian Andersen” (see page 52) Frontispiece
Valdemar burst into the room 13
Where jolly-looking women with quaint headdresses were selling their wares 35
They spread them on the grass in the shadow of the great brick tower 90
In the centre of the studio stood the unfinished statue of the little Crown Prince 119
‘Welcome! and Glaedelig Jul!‘ called out both Grandfather and Grandmother Ingemann 145

Map of DENMARK

[Transcriber’s Note: To see a larger version of this map, click here.]


Our Little Danish Cousin

CHAPTER I
THE DISTINGUISHED VISITOR

Hurtig! kaere Karen, mit lommetørklæde!
Fru Oberstinde Ingemann and her little flaxen-haired daughter, Karen, were sitting at their embroidery work in the deep window-seat that made one whole side of the cozy Ingemann living-room overlooking the Botanical Gardens. Between stitches, Karen was watching the rain patter on the little diamond window-panes, now and then pausing to take a quick look at some favorite newly-blossomed flower in the brilliant, long line of window-boxes which bordered the windows “like a long bright ribbon,” as Karen said.
The bell rang.
Hurtig! kaere Karen, mit lommetorklaede!” sounds like something terrible, but Fru Ingemann was only saying in Danish: “Quick, dear Karen, my handkerchief!”
“Thank you, Karen,” said the lady, as the fair child replaced the sheer bit of linen in her mother’s hand with a pretty courtesy, for Karen was a well-bred little girl.
It was a morning of excitement for Fru Else Ingemann. Two important letters had come to her from over the seas. One had come from Chicago in far-away America, saying that her brother-in-law, the Hon. Oscar Hoffman, was coming once more to pay a visit to dear old Denmark. Mr. Hoffman was an important man in America. He was the president of the “Danish-American National Park” in north Jutland, and it was in his loyal Danish brain that the whole idea of the great Park had originated. It had been his dream to save to the glory of Denmark, for all time to come, a wonderful, wild tract of heather-covered hills where, year by year, thousands of loyal Danish-Americans might meet in the Fatherland, and celebrate America’s Independence Day on Danish soil. At last the Park was a reality, and he was coming to make necessary arrangements.
He was bringing his son, Karl, with him, and, while they were to be in Copenhagen, they would spend their time with the Ingemanns. He hoped that the little cousins would become great friends. They would arrive in Copenhagen on Saturday. To-day was Thursday.
The other exciting message came from Fru Ingemann’s favorite brother, Hr. Thorvald Svensen. It was postmarked Rome, Italy, and informed her that at last he was coming back to live in his dear old home in Copenhagen, and that he would arrive on that day.

Hr. Svensen had been living in Rome for eight long years, and in those years of persistent, hard work he had finally realized his one great ambition, and become Denmark’s greatest sculptor—greatest, at least, since the day of Denmark’s beloved Thorvaldsen, whose namesake he was.
To Fru Ingemann there was no more welcome news in all the world. His letter said that he longed to see her and the children once more.
Little Valdemar, who was the sculptor’s godson, was wild with joy. “Let me stay home from school to-day, mother!” he implored.
“No, no, Valdemar,” firmly answered his mother, as she handed him his school luncheon, a box of delicious smörrebröd.[1] When Valdemar’s mother said “No, no,” he knew that further protests were useless. So he kissed her and was off, calling back: “Good-bye, mother dear; keep Gudfar[2] Thor until I come home from school, please!
All that morning Fru Ingemann flew about in happy expectancy, making more cozy the pretty little apartment. Karen could hear her mother, as she worked, singing softly those familiar old lines from Baggesen, the well-known Danish poet:
“Ah, nowhere is the rose so red,
Nowhere so small the thorn,
Nowhere so soft the downy bed
As those where we were born.”
Above the patter of the rain came the sound of approaching carriage wheels. Fru Ingemann paused.
“Quick, Karen,—the bell! It may be Uncle Thor!”
And so it proved! All the eight, long, lonesome years since she had last seen this dear brother, years in which she had lost her husband, were quickly forgotten in his great hearty embrace.
Min kaere Soster!
Min kaere Broder!
Their hearts were so full they could not find words.
Karen, tiptoeing, wanted to fling her tiny arms about her big, yellow-bearded, Viking-like, Uncle Thor’s neck, so he lifted the little maid high in his strong arms and kissed her.
“Ah, Karen, min lille skat![3] How you have grown!” he said affectionately. Soft yellow curls framed her pretty face, and two heavy braids of the same glorious hair hung far down her back. “Why, you were just a little, two-year-old baby when I went away to Rome, and now, I’ve no doubt, you are dreaming of a boarding-school off in France or Switzerland one of these days!”

But Karen only shook her little blond head and laughed, while Uncle Thor’s beauty-loving eye beamed on the dainty little damsel in white embroidered frock, half-hose and slippers, as he settled himself comfortably in the big arm-chair near the great, green-tiled stove, whose top almost touched the living-room ceiling.
“Congratulations, dear brother,” said Fru Ingemann. “Why didn’t you write us all about the great honor you have brought to the family? I saw in this morning’s ‘Nationaltidende,’ that you have just been appointed Court Painter to His Majesty, the King! It is the greatest honor that can come to a Danish artist. I am so proud of you!”
“It is true,” he acknowledged, briefly, “but tell me, sister Else, how are the boys, Aage and Valdemar?”
“Oh, Aage is now a big boy of sixteen, off doing his eight years of compulsory military service in the army. Aage will grow up with a straighter back and a better trained body because of his soldiering days. He will be home for Christmas with us.”
“And Valdemar?”
“Valdemar is only thirteen, but he is in his second year at the Metropolitan School, one of the best State Latin Schools in all Denmark. He will be back home at three o’clock. I could hardly get him to consent to go to school at all, this morning, after he was told that his Gudfar Thor was coming.”
“And Karen studies with her private tutors, here, at home?”
“Yes, Thorvald, besides learning to be a good little housekeeper, as well. But you must be both hungry and tired. It is nearly twelve o’clock. Come, Karen, help me spread the table with something good for Frokost,[4] for Uncle Thor.”
A cloth of snowy damask was quickly spread with various viands and meats; tongue, salad, salmon, anchovies, plates of butter, with trays containing French (white) bread, and other trays full of thin slices of rye bread, which is such a favorite with all Danes. Fru Ingemann then placed a bottle of beer beside Hr. Svensen’s plate, and brought in the steaming hot tea, which she herself poured into the delicate cups of that wonderful crystalline ware, the famous Royal Copenhagen porcelain—a set doubly cherished by her as an heirloom in her family for many generations.
Karen, who could herself make delicious tea, loved to gaze at the fascinatingly delicate decoration of the cups, which looked, as she said, “like frost on the window-pane;” but she never was allowed to touch this precious set of old Royal Copenhagen, of which not one piece had yet been broken.
“And smörrebröd, brother?” politely urged Fru Ingemann, for no good Danish housewife would ever think of inviting any one to breakfast without having smörrebröd on the table.
“Thanks, sister Else,” replied the hungry artist, who immediately set about thickly spreading butter—famous Danish butter—over a slice of rye bread, as did also Karen and her mother, after which each proceeded to select the particular kind of fish or meat preferred, and, arranging it upon the slice of buttered bread, ate it much as we would a sandwich. Uncle Thor made an especially delicious one for Karen, who had already become a great favorite with him.
Frokost over, Fru Ingemann arose, and, bowing slightly to her brother, said: “Velbekomme!“[5] And Hr. Svensen did the same.
Tak for Mad, Moder,”[6] said Karen courtesying first to her mother and then to her Uncle Thor, and kissing them both—a beautiful old Danish custom.
Uncle Thor was a great lover of flowers. To-day there were beautiful flowers on the table, in the windows, everywhere! In fact, the whole Ingemann apartment seemed overwhelmed with the loveliness of them. Besides the vases, there were little flower-pots galore, all decked in brightly-colored paper, some containing blooming plants, others, little growing trees.
“Ah, Karen, has there been a birthday here?” asked Uncle Thor, in mock surprise. “Run out in the hall and see what came all the way from Naples, Italy, to Frederiksberg-Alle, in Copenhagen, for a good little girl with long pigtails.”
Karen came running back with a tiny white kid box in her hand. Opening it, she beheld the most beautiful set imaginable of pale pink corals. She just couldn’t wait to put the necklace on before hugging her dear old Uncle Thor, who himself had to fasten the pretty chain around her slender little neck for her.
“Yes, Uncle Thor, we had a splendid time, and mother gave us chocolate, tea and cakes, and this is what all the boys and girls at my party yesterday sang:
“‘London Bridge is broken down,
Gold is won and bright renown,
Shields resounding, war-horns sounding,
Hild is shouting in the din,
Arrows singing,
Mailcoats ringing,
Odin makes our Olaf win.'”
Karen had hardly finished singing her song describing the days of old, when there had been a mighty encounter on London Bridge between the Danes and King Olaf the Saint, ending in the burning of the bridge, when there came a sudden great clatter and uproar on the stairs, with the loud barking of a dog, and the sound of a boy’s heavy boots, and Valdemar burst into the room.

“Valdemar burst into the room”

“Oh, my dear, dear Gudfar Thor!” he exclaimed, throwing his arms tight round his uncle’s neck.
“Why, Valdemar, you are the very image of your father!” exclaimed Hr. Svensen. “Don’t you think so, sister Else?” he questioned, as he gazed admiringly at the sturdy, big frame, rumpled flaxen hair, and the merry twinkle in the honest

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