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story: 1 2 3
Giricoccola by Ann Cunningham
story retold by Jane Harnett - Hargrove
panels 1 - 7 background: slate with bronze, cherry wood, limestone, gold and silver leaf embellishments

1 of 7 panels. the three daughters wave goodbye to their father as he sits atop his horse ready to leave for his trip. on the ground are piles of gold, silk and silver for the sisters to weave into cloth while their father is gone. they stand in front of a small house, with a half moon up in the sky. this panel incorporates slate, wood, bronze silver and gold leaf and limestone

There once lived three spinning sisters in the walk up space above their father's hand loomed fabric store front. He was often out scouring the country looking for exotic materials to dazzle the eye and hand. "Before I leave on this extended trip," he told his daughters, "I shall give you each a present to keep you busy and happy till my return." The girls immediately said they had been yearning for gold, silver and silk to work. Father bought the dry goods, gifted them unto his darlings, advised them to behave, kissed each, jumped up on his horse and rode off.

2 of 7 panels. the three daughters sit in the window of their fathers shop spinning gold, silver and silk. this panel incorporates slate, wood, limestone, gold and silver leafe and bronze

As it happens in these stories, the youngest was exceptionally beautiful, envied by her older sisters, and so, thwarted. At nightfall the girls went down stairs into the locked showroom, setting themselves down at the large spinning wheels that looked out onto the busy street life of evening time. The eldest settled in with the gold and the mid with the silver, leaving Giricoccola the silk to spin. The crowd wandered by glancing in at the spinners, always stopping to stare at the youngest. Even the Moon rising to shine into the window whispered so the three could hear:

"Lovely is the one with gold,
The one with silver shines brighter still,
But the one with silk surpasses them both,
Good night to all girls, fair and homely alike."

Hearing that Moon song the older siblings were consumed with rage and planned to exchange threads. That next evening they gave Giricoccola the silver and all sat to spin. Again, the Moon rose and whispered her song:

"Lovely is the one with gold,
The one with silk shines brighter still,
But the one with silver surpasses them both,
Good night to all girls, fair and homely alike."

Infuriated, the two oldest began overlooking their father's guidance. Afternoon came again calling the time to spin. Instead of just moving the wheels away from the window, they sat down giving Giricoccola the god daring the Moon to her aria. Rising and seeing them once again she beamed:

"Lovely is the one with silver,
The one with silk shines brighter still,

But the one with gold surpasses them both,
Good night to all girls, fair and homely alike."

3 of 7 panels. The youngest dauter is becconed by the mmon to cme and dance with her. Giricoccola rids on the moon dust up to the warm voice of mother moon. this panel incorporates slate, bronze, wood, limestone and silver leaf

Crazed with anger and forgetting they even had a father, they pushed their little sister into the creaky, unkept attic haymow. Poor forlorn Giricoccola wept. The Moon pressed into the darkness, opened the tiny window and took the girls hand cooing, "Come with me, I shall be a befriender. Come on this beam, spinning your splendor, come dance with me, O merry ascender." Giricoccola rode on moon dust up to the warm mothering voice. The next evening the Moon looked into the spinners window and upon seeing the two older sisters let them know:

"Lovely is the one with gold,
The one with silver shines brighter still,
But the one at my house surpasses them both,
Good night to all girls, fair and homely alike."

4 of 7 panels. the gypsy disguised as a peddler tepts Gircoccola with lovely pins for her hair. this panel incorporates slate, wood, limestone, gold and silver leaf this panel incorporates slate, bronze, limestone

The comrades dashed up to the mow. Giricoccola had vanished! They consulted an old astrologer who confirmed that their baby sister now lived happily in the house of the Moon. Giricoccola being so very far away wasn't good enough for the petty girls and they inquired how they might bring about her death. "Leave that to me," replied the astrologer.

Dressed as a gypsy, she crept up to peddle her wares at the Moon's gate. As Giricoccola looked out to the passage, the astrologer beckoned, "Wouldn't you love a lovely pin for you hair? All kinds and right kinds, and all kinds rare." Delighted, she invited the eccentric woman into her new quarters. Once inside, the astrologer thrust a pin into her hair and Giricoccola at once turned into a statue. After tapping on the stone, the doer scurried down to report to the sisters. When the Moon surrendered her anger and as she pulled the pin from her hair, Giricoccola came back to life. Her first words were a promise to let no one in again.

5 of 7 panels. Giricoccola drops the hair pins and bows her head in shame as the Moon expresses her dissapointment. this panel incorporates slate, wood, limestone and bronze

A while had passed and now the two devilish sisters wondered if Giricoccola was still dead. The astrologer consulted her oracle books and found the girl alive and well. The sisters whined, urging their associate to put her to death - again. So again the soothsayer sneaked up to the moon, this time carrying a box of combs. "Wouldn't you love a lovely comb for your hair? All kinds and right kinds, and all kinds rare?" Unable to resist, Giricoccola grew near and when near enough, the gypsy nailed a comb into her head. The astrologer hastened to the sisters. The Moon returned home the next morning to the girl-statue. The Moon was fit to be tied, but even in the wild, deranged state we all touch sometimes, she forgave Giricoccola. She removed the comb and assured the girl there would be no more pardons. Giricoccola solemnly pledged to admit no one again.

panel 6 of 7. Giricoccola now a statue is being carried on the donkey after being purchased for three cents by a chimney sweep. the kings son saw it, fell in love and bought her for he weight in gold. this panel incorporates slate, wood, bronze and limestone

Now up in arms, the sisters and their dreadful partner wouldn't give up the sting! The relentless gypsy packed a gown in with her stuffs and fled up toward her victim. "Wouldn't you love a lovely gown so fair? All kinds, and right kinds, and all kinds rare.? So irresistible was the gown that upon seeing the old woman handling it Giricoccola had to turn away as she called firmly, "I am to let no one in!" "You are in luck!: the wily astrologer came close, "For I am no one!" This fooled the girl, and in that moment the astrologer had the gown over Giricoccola's head and pulled onto her. The Moon returned to find the girl turned to stone. The Moon was out of patience and kept her word, selling the statue straightaway to a chimney sweep for three cents. He carried the beauty about tied to his donkey until one day the King's son saw it, fell in love, and just had to have it. He bought the icon for its weight in gold. Taking the statue to his suite he spent hours adorning the stone maiden. The Prince always locked the door upon leaving as he wanted no one else's admiring eye upon his love. Gut his sisters had spied the statue when he first concealed it in his room. They wanted the wonderful costume for the fancy dress ball. Opening the door with a skeleton key, they broke in to nab the gown.

panel 7 of 7. Giricoccola is brought back to life, surprises the prince from behind the door. this panel incorporates slate, wood, bronze, gold leaf and limestone

When the statue stirred, the sisters collapsed in alarmed hysteria. Giricoccola assured them with her story. The prince returned to find the statue missing. Just as he became frantic, Giricoccola swept out from behind the door. She spun her story true to her craft, telling it from beginning to end. He was delighted. She gratefully accepted the prince as her life partner in his father's domain. An ecstatic joyous ceremony ensued. Giricoccola's sisters caught wind of this celebration and died of consuming rage right then and there.

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