The Wolf’s Spring (Der Wolfsbrunnen)
When the Jettenbuehl near Heidelberg was still covered by thick forest, there lived a seeress named Jette in his shadow. She was of a slender, noble figure and in her grace and dignity she was equal to an immortal. A noble Franken youth heard about the seeress and decided to pay her a visit and ask her about his destiny. His heart knew no fear but as he stood before her, she appeared to him like a maiden from Walhalla. Thus he answered somewhat timidly when she inquired as to what he wanted: “Lovely maiden, you have the gift to see into the future. Please let me know my future.” Jette examined the handsome hero closely and suddenly something seemed to change in her heart.“Come back tomorrow when the sun is about to set. I will ask the runes in the meanwhile.”
The next day at the certain hour the youth was back at the ailantery. He found the seeress pensive and almost sad. “What did the runes say?” he asked. She shook her curly head and sighed. “The meaning has not become quite clear to me,” she said, “but I fear our life stars meet.”
“I would be overjoyed then,” cried the youth and sat by her feet and took her hand which he covered with passionate kisses. “Will you tie your destiny to mine?” asked the maiden. The youth assured her by all the gods that he would.“Our happiness needs to remain hidden from human eyes,” said the seeress and showed him the well that is now known by the name Wolf’s Spring for their nightly rendezvous. But in the first night as the youth came to the spring, he happened upon a gruesome spectacle: The maiden lay on the ground and over her body stood a horrible wolf mauling her soft flesh. The moon illuminated the gruesome scene. The youth immediately tore his sword from its sheath and rushed towards the beast which resisted but was soon enough killed.
The seeress was buried near the spring which from then on was given the the name Wolf’s Spring.
Copyright for translation: TaleTellerin (text source: Sagen aus den Gegenden des Rheins und des Schwarzwaldes. Gesammelt von D. Aloys Wilhelm. Zweite, sehr vermehrte Auflage. Heidelberg: J. Engelmann, 1829.)
Copyright for images: TaleTellerin
A bit cryptic and sad but beautiful. And much more fascinating than the story that the info posts tell at the spring: Apparently, the wolfhunter of some lord or other who resided in Heidelberg was given this place as his home. Then it became a hotel and a restaurant and right now, the house is empty. Which is a shame as the place is truly magically beautiful.