Monday, May 28, 2012

I'm the Pied Piper: German Town of Hamelin Sees Return of Rats

The German village made famous by the Medieval fairy tale of the Pied Piper has seen a troubling return of the same menace featured in the classic infestation of rats!

The village of Hamelin in the Lower Saxony region of Germany has seen a return of the rodent pests, who recently put a fountain in the town square out of commission by gnawing through an electrical power cord. Unfortunately, due to budget restraints, the fountain was set to be decommissioned soon anyway, as the Euro crisis continues to dig deep throughout the continent.

The classic fairy tale of the Pied Piper of Hamelin featured a traveling piper hired by the village to lure rats away from the town by playing his magical flute, which he does, causing the rodents to jump into the Weser River and drown. When the villagers refuse to pay him for services rendered after accomplishing the feat, he proceeds to lure away all of the town's children in an act of revenge. The tale became popular during the time of the Black Death (Bubonic Plague), which is believed to have spread to people after being bitten by the fleas from rats.

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