An astonishment a day- 
drives your depression away...

Luilekkerland, or the Land of loafers.

All Dutch people know of the land called Luilekkerland. It doesn't have a concrete location on a world map, but its description is very well known, and life in this country has been described many times and depicted in many paintings. One of these was done by the famous Pieter Bruegel (the Elder), who painted the panel "The land of the Cockaigne" in 1576. 

According to Dutch tradition, in this country, which can only be reached if one conquers a huge mountain of pudding, so tall that it reaches the sky, the inhabitants live in chocolate houses, their dwellings are surrounded by fences of sausages, and the trees there flower with sweet buns, already buttered. Clouds are actually baked chickens swimming in delicious sauce. From the heavens falls fabulous French wine. The peasants can nap under trees composed of meat filled dough, and alongside them run rivers of geese fat. Even horses, instead of feces, leave the inhabitants with stuffed eggs and the donkeys leave behind figs. There are so many birds that if you as much as open your mouth, you are likely to catch one. Baked piglets wander the streets with a knife already under their skin, so that one can easily come and take a preferred cut of meat. 

Such countries exist in the traditions of most nations. The Germans call theirs Schlaraffenland (land of the bum), the French have 'Cockaigne', the Italians 'Chucagna', for the Russians it was a 'land of idleness' , and the Poles have the 'land of flowing milk and honey'. 
The country has beed described in details by a prominent cobbler Hans Sachs of Nuremberg (1494 - 1576), and Pieter Bruegel (the Elder) presented in the painting:  

Pieter Bruegel (the Elder) (1567), panel "The land of Cockaigne"
(at present in the Museum of Munich).



(C) (selected from publications of 
 R. Antoszewski

Titirangi, Auckland, 
New Zeland

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March.  2003