Inspiration is everywhere - Donald Duck and the mirror earrings

The other day I really doubted myself. For years, I had had the plan to make a pair of earrings with little mirrors. My inspiration was a Donald Duck story about a Greek nymph who threw her hand mirror to the ground where it turned into a lake, and I also had the feeling that the story had been inspired by a real Greek tale.
I even started writing a blog post, but when I tried to find out more about the Greek tale, I came up empty. Next I tried to find something about the Donald story, but a site that a friend told me about didn't help me, either, because only titles were listed, no contents.
I questioned my family, but to no avail which was very disappointing ;-)

So now I had a pair of bead embroidered earrings in light blue (for the water), with small mirrors on top and sparkly crystals in the handle, and the story that inspired them didn't even exist?

It didn't even comfort me that I liked the result. Could I really be that wrong about something that had been taking up space in my brain for so long? I was sure I hadn't made that up myself.
Of course there was only one way to solve this problem, I had to look through my comic books.
I started with my "Walt Disneys Lustige Taschenbücher", translated "Walt Disney's Funny Pocketbooks", a comic book series that, other than the regular "Micky Maus", had around 250 pages and thus allowed for longer stories. They were published several times a year, not weekly like "Micky Maus", and with very few exceptions, the stories were by European artists, mostly Italian in the early years, in fact they were based on the Italian series "I Classici di Walt Disney". For economic reasons, the early books weren't fully colored, but the double pages were alternatedly black-white and colored.
The LTB as they are called here had many ups and downs regarding the quality of the stories - both the drawing and the writing - but I grew up on them; and although they can't compare with the work of Carl Barks, there are a few wonderful adventures in them.

And .... "Auf den Spuren der alten Griechen" (In the tracks of the ancient Greeks),
LTB 32 "Donald im Glück" (Donald in Luck)!
More like "Cat in Luck"! I didn't have to search as long as I had feared.
I had never looked for Greeks on the aforementioned site because I was so fixed on the mirror part or I may even have been quicker.

So, was the story based on a Greek tale?
Kind of. Actually it mixed up two Greek tales, added a detail of its own and threw in an Italian adventurer for good measure.
Tale 1: Deucalion and Pyrrha survive a flood sent by Zeus as a punishment thanks to being warned by Prometheus, Deucalion's father (they didn't take any animals, shame on them, Gundel and der Dekan said). When they ask the goddess Themis how to repopulate the world, she tells them to cover their heads and throw the bones of their mother over their shoulders, meaning Gaia, the mother of all living things, her bones being rocks. The rocks thrown by Deucalion turn into men, those thrown by Pyrrha into women. Again, it doesn't say anything about cat..., erm, animals.
Tale 2: Castalia, a nymph, tried to evade Apollo's amorous advances, and threw or transformed herself into a spring near Delphi.

In the story that Huey, Dewey, and Louie tell Scrooge and Donald, Deucalion and Pyrrha don't ask Themis for advice, but the gods in general. Next, the nymph Castalia appears. She throws her mirror to the ground and it turns into a mirror-shaped spring (not a lake, mea culpa)
and advises the couple to throw Gaia's bones over their shoulders when the light of the full moon falls on the spring.
To get a free vacation to Greece, Donald convinces Scrooge to search for the spring and use it to turn stones into gold, and when they come to Greece and Donald finds an antique mirror in a shop, he sneaks it into the fire, determined to blame the mirror's age when the spell won't work.
Of course the nephews notice right away that the mirror is from glass and can't possible be as old as the tale, but Scrooge tries his luck, anyway.
Instead of being turned into gold, however, the rock gets duplicated. The nephews look the mirror up in their trusted scout guidebook and find out that Cagliostro, an Italian adventurer and "magician", invented this magic mirror.
Finally the mirror breaks and the pieces produce a crowd of Scrooge duplicates who chase after Donald, a spell that lasts for an hour.

There you go. What you never wanted to learn, I got it for you :-D
Oh yeah, and earrings.

All the Ducks belong to the Walt Disney Company. I am not affiliated with Disney in any way.


  1. When you first posted those earrings and wrote about the "lost" story, I actually spent about 1/2 an hour trying to see if I could find the myth the earrings were based upon! Glad you found the story again and shared!

    1. How sweet of you! I really hadn't expected such a mix of stories and I definitely learned something writing this post.

  2. Ha! How fun! I’m glad you found the tales. The two little hand mirror earrings are so cute. I love your unique ideas. Maybe my jewelry could benefit from stories.

    1. Thank you, Michelle! Bead embroidery, I think, makes it the easiest to bring a story to life, even if I just see it myself. It doesn't have to be bead embroidery, though. I have another piece planned.