Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Telling on Tell

William Tell, aka Wilhelm Tell, aka Guillaume Tell, aka Guglielmo Tell, aka Guglielm Tell: which name used depends on which national ethnicity one is in Switzerland, which in some respects is like a four-way nation (a not-particularly evenly divided 4 way nation).

William Tell is a sort of semi-historic fictional character, a Swiss variation in terms of his expertise with a bow, and for being a national legend with overtones of the 'right' loyalty in conflict with the acting authority, to the legendary Robin Hood in England.  The legend resembles the English Arthurian legends, in having events take place at very specific locations (although times tend to be a little.....vague) and with at least some figures who actually existed in history, at least, in some versions.  Like the Arthurian legend in the UK, the period of time over which versions of the story occur span a few hundred years, and like the Arthurian legend, there may be some original historic figure that inspired them who has been lost to the mists and myths of time.

This image is from Altdorf, of a famous statue there; in this version he is portrayed with a crossbow.

1 comment:

  1. Did Herr
    Signor/Monsieur Tell's crossbow (which was a precision weapon in its time) bear etched biblical verses its various parts? Cuz' y'know, BiilyBob was a KKKristian hero.