AT 451: The maiden who seeks her brothers
A queen has been promised a daughter on condition that she loses her sons. When the girl is born, the brothers are transformed to birds (wild ducks) and fly away. The sister finds them and learns how to disenchant them. She must plug bog cotton and sew shirts for them without talking, laughing or weeping. A prince sees the speechless girl and marries her. On the birth of her children they are stolen by her mother-in-law and she is accused of killing them. As she is about to be burnt as a witch, the wild ducks fly down to save her. They get the shirts, are disenchanted, and all is cleared up.
Collor: Peter Christen Asbjørnsen
Location: Akershus, Gjerdrum
DE TOLV VILLENDENE: Norsk Eventyrbibliotek Vol. 7, p. 11ff. Det Norske Samlaget, Oslo.
THE TWELVE WILD DUCKS: Dasent, George Webbe: Popular tales from the Norse, Page 52ff. Edmonston and Douglas, Edinburgh 1862.