The Legend of Ulenspiegel by Charles de Coster Book I Chapter 2

While Ulenspiegel drank of them, and called for no cup, all the birds in the countryside awoke.

Claes, who was binding faggots, looked upon his wife as she gave the breast to Ulenspiegel.

“Wife,” said he, “have you laid up store of this good milk?”

“The jars are full,” said she, “but that is not enough for my content.”

“You speak piteously of so great a joy.”

“’Tis in my mind,” said she, “that in the wallet you see hanging by the wall there is not one poor patard.”

Claes took the wallet in his hand; but in vain did he shake it, no morning song of coin answered him from within. Thereat he was chapfallen, but wishing nevertheless to hearten his good wife.

“Why do you vex yourself?” said he. “Have we not in the hutch the cake Katheline gave us yesterday? Do not I behold a noble piece of beef that for three days at least will make good milk for the babe? That sack of beans squatting so snugly in the corner, does it prophesy famine? Yon firkin of butter, is it a ghost? Be they but phantoms, those bright platoons and companies of apples ranged warrior-like in ranks of eleven in the loft? Doth not that full-girthed cask of Bruges cuyte, that in its belly keeps the wherewithal for our refreshing, doth it not proclaim good drinking?”

“Needs must,” said Soetkin, “when the babe is borne to baptism, that we give two patards to the priest and a florin for the feasting.”

Therewith entered Katheline, holding a great sheaf of plants in her hand, saying:

“I bring the lucky babe angelica, that keepeth man from lewdness; fennel that putteth Satan to flight…”

“Have you not,” said Claes, “gotten the herb that conjureth florins?”

“Nay,” quoth she.

“Then,” said he, “I will even go see if there be none in the canal.”

Forth he went carrying line and net, being well assured of meeting nobody, for it still lacked an hour of the oosterzon, which is, in Flanders, the morning sun of six of the clock.