Researching gypsy legends for my new release, Stolen Gypsy, I came across two I found particularly interesting. Both are related to the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, but present differing tales of Gypsy involvement.
Gypsies were known as blacksmiths and coppersmiths in earlier times. It has been told that a blacksmith was commissioned to make the nails that would be used to crucify Christ. Because of this, gypsies were condemned to wander the earth for eternity, never settling in one place.
More fascinating are the other versions. In this telling, God visits the gypsy blacksmith in a dream. Although he was instructed by the Romans to make four nails, but provide only three for the crucifixion. The fourth nail was intended to pierce Christ’s heart. In return for doing as God requested, gypsies were granted the freedom to travel the earth as well as the right to steal from non-Romani’s without breaking the seventh commandment which forbids stealing.
The second version is sometimes adapted. In this one, there are four nails, but a golden one has been fashioned to be driven into Christ’s head. A gypsy boy steals the fourth nail, thereby saving Jesus from death and facilitating the resurrection. Because of his actions, gypsies are granted the freedom to steal without repercussions.
Research by authors can often reveal little-known stories or facts that can be integrated into books. I hope you enjoy these legends and my book, Stolen Gypsy available on Amazon for the special reduced price of $.99 through April 15th. You’ll find some more little known gypsy traditions in the pages.