THE WRITINGS OF FRÊTHORIK AND WILJOW.
My name is Frêthorik, surnamed oera Linda, which means over the Linden. In Ljndwardia I was chosen as Asga. Ljndwardia is a new village within the fortification of the Ljudgaarda, of which the name has fallen into disrepute. In my time much has happened. I had written a good deal about it, but afterwards much more was related to me. I will write an account of both one and the other after this book, to the honour of the good people and to the disgrace of the bad.
In my youth I heard complaints on all sides. The bad time was coming; the bad time did come—Frya had forsaken us. She withheld from us all her watch-maidens, because monstrous idolatrous images had been found within our landmarks. I burnt with curiosity to see those images. In our neighbourhood a little old woman tottered in and out of the houses, always calling out about the bad times. I came to her; she stroked my chin; then I became bold, and asked her if she would show me the bad times and the images. She laughed good-naturedly, and took me to the citadel. An old man asked me if I could read and write. No, I said. Then you must first go and learn, he replied, otherwise it may not be shown to you. I went daily to the writer and learnt. Eight years afterwards I heard that our Burgtmaagd had been unchaste, and that some of the burgtheeren had committed treason with the Magy, and many people took their part. Everywhere disputes arose. There were children rebelling against their parents; good people were secretly murdered. The little old woman who had brought everything to light was found dead in a ditch. My father, who was a judge, would have her avenged. He was murdered in the night in his own house. Three years after that the Magy was master without any resistance. The Saxmen had remained religious and upright. All the good people fled to them. My mother died of it. Now I did like the others. The Magy prided himself upon his canning, but Irtha made him know that she would not tolerate any Magy or idol on the holy bosom that had borne Frya. As a wild horse tosses his mane after he has thrown his rider, so Irtha shook her forests and her mountains. Rivers flowed over the land; the sea raged; mountains spouted fire to the clouds, and what they vomited forth the clouds flung upon the earth. At the beginning of the Arnemaand (harvest month) the earth bowed towards the north, and sank down lower and lower. In the Welvenmaand (winter month) the low lands of Fryasland were buried under the sea. The woods in which the images were, were torn up and scattered by the wind. The following year the frost came in the Hardemaand (Louwmaand, January), and laid Fryasland concealed under a sheet of ice. In Sellemaand (Sprokkelmaand, February) there were storms of wind from the north, driving mountains of ice and stones. When the spring-tides came the earth raised herself up, the ice melted; with the ebb the forests with the images drifted out to sea. In the Winne, or Minnemaand (Bloeimaand, May), every one who dared went home. I came with a maiden to the citadel Liudgaarde. How sad it looked there. The forests of the Lindaoorden were almost all gone. Where Liudgaarde used to be was sea. The waves swept over the fortifications. Ice had destroyed the tower, and the houses lay heaped over each other. On the slope of the dyke I found a stone on which the writer had inscribed his name. That was a sign to me. The same thing had happened to other citadels as to ours. In the upper lands they had been destroyed by the earth, in the lower lands by the water. Fryasburgt, at Texland, was the only one found uninjured, but all the land to the north was sunk under the sea, and has never been recovered. At the mouth of the Flymeer, as we were told, thirty salt swamps were found, consisting of the forest and the ground that had been swept away. At Westflyland there were fifty. The canal which had run across the land from Alderga was filled up with sand and destroyed. The seafaring people and other travellers who were at home had saved themselves, their goods, and their relations upon their ships. But the black people at Lydasburgt and Alkmarum had done the same; and as they went south they saved many girls, and as no one came to claim them, they took them for their wives. The people who came back all lived within the lines of the citadel, as outside there was nothing but mud and marsh. The old houses were all smashed together. People bought cattle and sheep from the upper lands, and in the great houses where formerly the maidens were established cloth and felt were made for a livelihood. This happened 1888 years after the submersion of Atland 1.
For 282 2 years we had not had an Eeremoeder, and now, when everything seemed lost, they set about choosing one. The lot fell upon Gosa, surnamed Makonta. She was Burgtmaagd at Fryasburgt, in Texland. She had a clear head and strong sense, and was very good; and as her citadel was the only one that had been spared, every one saw in that her call. Ten years after that the seafarers came from Forana and Lydasburgt. They wished to drive the black men, with their wives and children, out of the country. They wished to obtain the opinion of the mother upon the subject. She asked them: Can you send them all back to their country? If so, then lose no time, or they will find no relatives alive. No, they said. Goss replied: They have eaten your bread and salt; they have placed themselves entirely under your protection. You must consult your own hearts. But I will give you one piece of advice. Keep them till you are able to send them back, but keep them outside your citadels. Watch over their morals, and educate them as if they were Frya's sons. Their women are the strongest here. Their blood will disappear like smoke, till at last nothing but Frya's blood will remain in their descendants. So they remained here. Now, I should wish that my descendants should observe in how far Goss spoke the truth. When our country began to recover, there came troops of poor Saxon men and women to the neighbourhoods of Staveren and Alderga, to search for gold and other treasures in the swampy lands. But the sea-people would not permit it, so they went and settled in the empty village of the West Flyland in order to preserve their lives.