Märchen von Friedhof

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Märchen with Elise, as depicted on the regular edition cover of Ido e Itaru Mori e Itaru Ido.

Märchen von Friedhof is a pivotal character from the prologue single Ido e itaru Mori e itaru Ido and the 7th story CD Märchen. Though his role in the former is more in vein with that of a narrator and observer, he plays a more active part in the story CD, becoming a centerpiece responsible for the bulk of the events depicted in the album. His vocals and narrations are provided for by Revo.

Contents

Name

His name means ‘fairytale from the graveyard’ in German, which seems to be a reference to the words ‘fairytales always begin from the graveyard’, a phrase that has appeared in relation to the single Ido e Itaru Mori e Itaru Ido multiple times, once even spoken by Märchen himself.

The phrase has taken form in the 7th story CD through the seven actresses’ stories, each of them based on a Brother Grimms’ fairytale and set into motion after the respective heroines have suffered some form of ‘death’.

Appearance

Märchen in the story album(left) and the prologue single(right).

Though there are stark differences between his attire in Ido e itaru Mori e itaru Ido and Märchen, both outfits are united in their color scheme of red and black – thematic color also seen in the attires of Elise and Märchen’s own band of dusk. Certain features are also common to both outfits - such as the chains, the short mantle draped around his shoulders, as well as the red extensions that stem from it. Cross imagery is also prevalent in both of his outfits, possibly in reference to graves.

As mentioned above, there are distinct differences between his outfit in Ido e Itaru Mori e Itaru Ido and Märchen – many theories have been suggested to account for such differences, and though they shall not be described in this section, it should be noted that his outfit in the album is significantly more refined than the one in Ido e Itaru Mori e Itaru Ido and much more in line with a conductor.

Role

Märchen von Friedhof is one of the three narrators of Ido e Itaru Mori e Itaru Ido, describing the events revolving März von Ludowing’s death and briefly seguing into an interlude concerning the unfortunate conditions of a population plagued with the black death.

He also appears briefly in the last part of Kono Semai Torikago no Naka de, accompanying Elisabeth von Wettin in her chorus.

During his first appearance in the 7th story CD, he claims to have retained no memories from before he woke up in the bottom of a well, which seems contradictory when one considers his narrative in Ido e Itaru Mori e Itaru Ido. However, under the prompting of Elise, he quickly decides to follow his impulse for revenge, rousing his band of dusk into action and introducing the seven actresses who will become centerpieces in the following seven songs, setting the stage for the rest of the album.

A brief and somewhat perplexing section in Yoiyami no Uta hints at his origins. The section consists of a conversation between März von Ludowing and a mysterious voice from the well - often assumed to be Id – which concluded in the young boy’s scream changing into Märchen’s voice. This point will be elaborated in the appropriate theory section.

All seven songs following Yoiyami no Uta begin with him approaching one of the seven actresses and questioning them of the reason each of them have 'crossed the border', after which the individual women sing of the experiences that led them to their respective circumstances. Märchen proceeds to offer each of them a chance at revenge, with the exception of Sei to Shi wo Wakatsu Kyoukai no Furuido, in which the conductor detects the stepdaughter's hesitation at taking revenge and offers her more time to mull over her choices before finally taking up her revenge. The song is also an exception in that Märchen and Elise appear in the song outside of their usual roles - namely, in alternate dimension that the stepdaughter finds herself in, playing the role of the baked bread and ripe apples she comes across.

In the first six actresses' songs, their revenges are carried out successfully and the songs conclude with a brief remark from Elise and Märchen. However, Elisabeth von Wettin, the heroine of Takkei no Seijo refuses Märchen's offer at revenge. She recognizes him as März von Ludowing, and under her prompting, Märchen seems to have regained his memories and abandoned his role as the conductor of revenges, much to Elise's chagrin. In Gyoukou no Uta, he expresses his regret at not being able to live through the same times with an unspecified 'you', presumably Elisabeth. He comes to accept the fact that his time has passed, and concludes his role in the album with a final hope for reunion.

"That brilliant era in which you're smiling even now
Without hating anyone or regretting death, let's meet there for sure."
From Gyoukou no Uta (The Song of Dawn), Märchen
Translation by Defade.

Theories

Connection to Idolfried

It is a common assumption amongst fans that Märchen von Friedhof's body originally belonged to Idolfried Ehrenberg, due to several factors, the first and foremost of which is the striking similarity seen between the two's appearances (both characters are played by Revo). If the theory of the stepdaughter being Idolfried's daughter is to be believed, then the man died in a well, which led to much speculation surrounding the possible connections between März von Ludowing, Idolfried Ehrenberg and Märchen von Friedhof. As mentioned above, März could be heard conversing with a voice in the well after his death during Yoiyami no Uta.

I didn’t want to perish here

Boy, I can say the same of you, right?
Yes.
Don’t you still have things left to do on earth?
Yes!
The time is ripe. Come, boy, take me into yourself!

From Yoiyami no Uta (The Song of Dusk), Märchen
Translation by Defade.

The above conversation concluded in März's transformation into Märchen, widely believed to be Idolfried's corpse at the bottom of the well.

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