Baddest boast of all time involving acorns
June 19, 2019 4:17 PM   Subscribe

I'm trying to hunt down the source of a cool boast that has been stuck in my head for a while. I think the source comes from something in print, I don't remember it being spoken out loud not do I recall reading it from a screen, so a book is most likely.

It's someone, probably the villain, bragging about how cool and powerful and immortal he is, and he says something to the effect of:

"The acorn has not yet been planted, which would grow into a tree, which would be cut down to build the cradle of the one who would defeat me."

Basically they're saying they're so awesome and unkillable that anyone who would possible defeat them isn't event going to be born for a long time yet.

Anyone know where this is from? The accent on wood and trees and cradles makes me think of fantasy novels somehow, children destined to defeat evil etc. I've never actually seen Willow so I doubt it's from there, but possibly it could come from either literature or a graphic novel in that genre. Thanks!
posted by The Pluto Gangsta to Media & Arts (4 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Something similar appears in Neil Gaiman's Stardust.
posted by freshwater at 4:27 PM on June 19, 2019 [2 favorites]

Jumping off from Freshwater's suggestion: "The squirrel has not yet found the acorn that will grow into the oak that will be cut to form the cradle of the babe that will grow to slay me.”― Neil Gaiman, Stardust
posted by MonkeyToes at 4:45 PM on June 19, 2019 [12 favorites]

Fast work, thank you! Interesting that I remembered the acorn part but not the squirrel.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 4:59 PM on June 19, 2019 [1 favorite]

Almost definitely inspired by the story of the Cauld Lad of Hylton, where the voice of a ghost or brownie or similar is heard singing

Wae's me, wae's me,
The acorn's not yet fallen from the tree,
That's to grow the wood,
That's to make the cradle,
That's to rock the bairn,
That's to grow to the man
That's to lay me [i.e., lay him to rest]

(And whether that's inspired by earlier folklore or figures of speech I don't know.)
posted by trig at 5:31 PM on June 19, 2019 [29 favorites]

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