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´╗┐Title: The Blue Fairy Book
Author: Lang, Andrew, 1844-1912
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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Once upon a time in a certain country there lived a
king whose palace was surrounded by a spacious garden.
But, though the gardeners were many and the soil was
good, this garden yielded neither flowers nor fruits, not
even grass or shady trees.

The King was in despair about it, when a wise old man
said to him:

"Your gardeners do not understand their business: but
what can you expect of men whose fathers were cobblers
and carpenters? How should they have learned to cultivate
your garden?"

"You are quite right," cried the King.

"Therefore," continued the old man, "you should send
for a gardener whose father and grandfather have been
gardeners before him, and very soon your garden will be
full of green grass and gay flowers, and you will enjoy its
delicious fruit."

So the King sent messengers to every town, village, and
hamlet in his dominions, to look for a gardener whose
forefathers had been gardeners also, and after forty days
one was found.

"Come with us and be gardener to the King," they said
to him.

"How can I go to the King," said the gardener, "a poor
wretch like me?"

"That is of no consequence," they answered. "Here are
new clothes for you and your family."

"But I owe money to several people."

"We will pay your debts," they said.

So the gardener allowed himself to be persuaded, and
went away with the messengers, taking his wife and his
son with him; and the King, delighted to have found a
real gardener, entrusted him with the care of his garden.
The man found no difficulty in making the royal garden
produce flowers and fruit, and at the end of a year the
park was not like the same place, and the King showered
gifts upon his new servant.

The gardener, as you have heard already, had a son,
who was a very handsome young man, with most agreeable
manners, and every day he carried the best fruit of
the garden to the King, and all the prettiest flowers to his
daughter. Now this princess was wonderfully pretty and
was just sixteen years old, and the King was beginning
to think it was time that she should be married.

"My dear child," said he, "you are of an age to take a
husband, therefore I am thinking of marrying you to the
son of my prime minister.

"Father," replied the Princess, "I will never marry the
son of the minister."

"Why not?" asked the King.

"Because I love the gardener's son," answered the

On hearing this the King was at first very angry, and
then he wept and sighed, and declared that such a husband
was not worthy of his daughter; but the young
Princess was not to be turned from her resolution to
marry the gardener's son.

Then the King consulted his ministers. "This is what
you must do," they said. "To get rid of the gardener you
must send both suitors to a very distant country, and the
one who returns first shall marry your daughter."

The King followed this advice, and the minister's son
was presented with a splendid horse and a purse full of
gold pieces, while the gardener's son had only an old lame
horse and a purse full of copper money, and every one
thought he would never come back from his journey.

The day before they started the Princess met her lover
and said to him:

"Be brave, and remember always that I love you. Take
this purse full of jewels and make the best use you can of
them for love of me, and come back quickly and demand
my hand."

The two suitors left the town together, but the
minister's son went off at a gallop on his good horse, and very
soon was lost to sight behind the most distant hills. He
traveled on for some days, and presently reached a fountain
beside which an old woman all in rags sat upon a

"Good-day to you, young traveler," said she.

But the minister's son made no reply.

"Have pity upon me, traveler," she said again. "I am
dying of hunger, as you see, and three days have I been
here and no one has given me anything."

"Let me alone, old witch," cried the young man; "I can
do nothing for you," and so saying he went on his way.

That same evening the gardener's son rode up to the
fountain upon his lame gray horse.

"Good-day to you, young traveler," said the beggar-woman.

"Good-day, good woman," answered he.

"Young traveler, have pity upon me."

"Take my purse, good woman," said he, "and mount
behind me, for your legs can't be very strong."

The old woman didn't wait to be asked twice, but
mounted behind him, and in this style they reached the
chief city of a powerful kingdom. The minister's son was
lodged in a grand inn, the gardener's son and the old
woman dismounted at the inn for beggars.

The next day the gardener's son heard a great noise in
the street, and the King's heralds passed, blowing all
kinds of instruments, and crying:

"The King, our master, is old and infirm. He will give
a great reward to whoever will cure him and give him
back the strength of his youth."

Then the old beggar-woman said to her benefactor:

"This is what you must do to obtain the reward which
the King promises. Go out of the town by the south gate,
and there you will find three little dogs of different colors;
the first will be white, the second black, the third red. You
must kill them and then burn them separately, and gather
up the ashes. Put the ashes of each dog into a bag of its own
color, then go before the door of the palace and cry out,
'A celebrated physician has come from Janina in Albania.
He alone can cure the King and give him back the
strength of his youth.' The King's physicians will say,
This is an impostor, and not a learned man,' and they
will make all sorts of difficulties, but you will overcome
them all at last, and will present yourself before the sick
King. You must then demand as much wood as three
mules can carry, and a great cauldron, and must shut
yourself up in a room with the Sultan, and when the
cauldron boils you must throw him into it, and there leave
him until his flesh is completely separated from his bones.
Then arrange the bones in their proper places, and throw
over them the ashes out of the three bags. The King will
come back to life, and will be just as he was when he was
twenty years old. For your reward you must demand the
bronze ring which has the power to grant you everything
you desire. Go, my son, and do not forget any of my

The young man followed the old beggar-woman's
directions. On going out of the town he found the white,
red, and black dogs, and killed and burnt them, gathering
the ashes in three bags. Then he ran to the palace and

"A celebrated physician has just come from Janina in
Albania. He alone can cure the King and give him back
the strength of his youth."

The King's physicians at first laughed at the unknown
wayfarer, but the Sultan ordered that the stranger should
be admitted. They brought the cauldron and the loads
of wood, and very soon the King was boiling away.
Toward mid-day the gardener's son arranged the bones in
their places, and he had hardly scattered the ashes over
them before the old King revived, to find himself once
more young and hearty.

"How can I reward you, my benefactor?" he cried.
"Will you take half my treasures?"

"No," said the gardener's son.

"My daughter's hand?"


"Take half my kingdom."

"No. Give me only the bronze ring which can instantly
grant me anything I wish for."

"Alas!" said the King, "I set great store by that
marvelous ring; nevertheless, you shall have it." And he gave
it to him.

The gardener's son went back to say good-by to the old
beggar-woman; then he said to the bronze ring:

"Prepare a splendid ship in which I may continue my
journey. Let the hull be of fine gold, the masts of silver,
the sails of brocade; let the crew consist of twelve young
men of noble appearance, dressed like kings. St. Nicholas
will be at the helm. As to the cargo, let it be diamonds,
rubies, emeralds, and carbuncles."

And immediately a ship appeared upon the sea which
resembled in every particular _the description given by the
gardener's son_, and, stepping on board, he continued his
journey. Presently he arrived at a great town and established
himself in a wonderful palace. After several days
he met his rival, the minister's son, who had spent all his
money and was reduced to the disagreeable employment
of a carrier of dust and rubbish. The gardener's son said
to him:

"What is your name, what is your family, and from
what country do you come?"

"I am the son of the prime minister of a great nation,
and yet see what a degrading occupation I am reduced

"Listen to me; though I don't know anything more
about you, I am willing to help you. I will give you a ship
to take you back to your own country upon one condition."

"Whatever it may be, I accept it willingly."

"Follow me to my palace."

The minister's son followed the rich stranger, whom he
had not recognized. When they reached the palace the
gardener's son made a sign to his slaves, who completely
undressed the new-comer.

"Make this ring red-hot," commanded the master, "and
mark the man with it upon his back."

The slaves obeyed him.

"Now, young man," said the rich stranger, "I am going
to give you a vessel which will take you back to your own

And, going out, he took the bronze ring and said:

"Bronze ring, obey thy master. Prepare me a ship of
which the half-rotten timbers shall be painted black, let
the sails be in rags, and the sailors infirm and sickly. One
shall have lost a leg, another an arm, the third shall be a
hunchback, another lame or club-footed or blind, and
most of them shall be ugly and covered with scars. Go,
and let my orders be executed."

The minister's son embarked in this old vessel, and
thanks to favorable winds, at length reached his own
country. In spite of the pitiable condition in which he
returned they received him joyfully.

"I am the first to come back," said he to the King;
now fulfil your promise, and give me the princess in

So they at once began to prepare for the wedding
festivities. As to the poor princess, she was sorrowful and
angry enough about it.

The next morning, at daybreak, a wonderful ship with
every sail set came to anchor before the town. The King
happened at that moment to be at the palace window.

"What strange ship is this," he cried, "that has a
golden hull, silver masts, and silken sails, and who are the
young men like princes who man it? And do I not see St.
Nicholas at the helm? Go at once and invite the captain
of the ship to come to the palace."

His servants obeyed him, and very soon in came an
enchantingly handsome young prince, dressed in rich
silk, ornamented with pearls and diamonds.

"Young man," said the King, "you are welcome,
whoever you may be. Do me the favor to be my guest as long
as you remain in my capital."

"Many thanks, sire," replied the captain, "I accept
your offer."

"My daughter is about to be married," said the King;
"will you give her away?"

"I shall be charmed, sire."

Soon after came the Princess and her betrothed.

"Why, how is this?" cried the young captain; "would
you marry this charming princess to such a man as that?"

"But he is my prime minister's son!"

"What does that matter? I cannot give your daughter
away. The man she is betrothed to is one of my servants."

"Your servant?"

"Without doubt. I met him in a distant town reduced
to carrying away dust and rubbish from the houses. I
had pity on him and engaged him as one of my servants."

"It is impossible!" cried the King.

"Do you wish me to prove what I say? This young man
returned in a vessel which I fitted out for him, an
unseaworthy ship with a black battered hull, and the sailors
were infirm and crippled."

"It is quite true," said the King.

"It is false," cried the minister's son. "I do not know
this man!"

"Sire," said the young captain, "order your daughter's
betrothed to be stripped, and see if the mark of my ring
is not branded upon his back."

The King was about to give this order, when the
minister's son, to save himself from such an indignity,
admitted that the story was true.

"And now, sire," said the young captain, "do you not
recognize me?"

"I recognize you," said the Princess; "you are the
gardener's son whom I have always loved, and it is you
I wish to marry."

"Young man, you shall be my son-in-law," cried the
King. "The marriage festivities are already begun, so you
shall marry my daughter this very day."

And so that very day the gardener's son married the
beautiful Princess.

Several months passed. The young couple were as
happy as the day was long, and the King was more and
more pleased with himself for having secured such a

But, presently, the captain of the golden ship found it
necessary to take a long voyage, and after embracing his
wife tenderly he embarked.

Now in the outskirts of the capital there lived an old
man, who had spent his life in studying black arts--alchemy,
astrology, magic, and enchantment. This man found out that
the gardener's son had only succeeded in marrying the
Princess by the help of the genii who obeyed the bronze ring.

"I will have that ring," said he to himself. So he went
down to the sea-shore and caught some little red fishes.
Really, they were quite wonderfully pretty. Then he came
back, and, passing before the Princess's window, he began
to cry out:

"Who wants some pretty little red fishes?"

The Princess heard him, and sent out one of her slaves,
who said to the old peddler:

"What will you take for your fish?"

"A bronze ring."

"A bronze ring, old simpleton! And where shall I find

"Under the cushion in the Princess's room."

The slave went back to her mistress.

"The old madman will take neither gold nor silver,"
said she.

"What does he want then?"

"A bronze ring that is hidden under a cushion."

"Find the ring and give it to him," said the Princess.

And at last the slave found the bronze ring, which the
captain of the golden ship had accidentally left behind
and carried it to the man, who made off with it instantly.

Hardly had he reached his own house when, taking the
ring, he said, "Bronze ring, obey thy master. I desire that
the golden ship shall turn to black wood, and the crew to
hideous negroes; that St. Nicholas shall leave the helm
and that the only cargo shall be black cats."

And the genii of the bronze ring obeyed him.

Finding himself upon the sea in this miserable
condition, the young captain understood that some one must
have stolen the bronze ring from him, and he lamented
his misfortune loudly; but that did him no good.

"Alas!" he said to himself, "whoever has taken my ring
has probably taken my dear wife also. What good will it
do me to go back to my own country?" And he sailed
about from island to island, and from shore to shore,
believing that wherever he went everybody was laughing at
him, and very soon his poverty was so great that he and
his crew and the poor black cats had nothing to eat but
herbs and roots. After wandering about a long time he
reached an island inhabited by mice. The captain landed
upon the shore and began to explore the country. There
were mice everywhere, and nothing but mice. Some of
the black cats had followed him, and, not having been fed
for several days, they were fearfully hungry, and made
terrible havoc among the mice.

Then the queen of the mice held a council.

"These cats will eat every one of us," she said, "if the
captain of the ship does not shut the ferocious animals up.
Let us send a deputation to him of the bravest among us."

Several mice offered themselves for this mission and set
out to find the young captain.

"Captain," said they, "go away quickly from our island,
or we shall perish, every mouse of us."

"Willingly," replied the young captain, "upon one
condition. That is that you shall first bring me back a bronze
ring which some clever magician has stolen from me. If
you do not do this I will land all my cats upon your
island, and you shall be exterminated."

The mice withdrew in great dismay. "What is to be
done?" said the Queen. "How can we find this bronze
ring?" She held a new council, calling in mice from every
quarter of the globe, but nobody knew where the bronze
ring was. Suddenly three mice arrived from a very distant
country. One was blind, the second lame, and the
third had her ears cropped.

"Ho, ho, ho!" said the new-comers. "We come from a
far distant country."

"Do you know where the bronze ring is which the genii

"Ho, ho, ho! we know; an old sorcerer has taken
possession of it, and now he keeps it in his pocket by day and in
his mouth by night."

"Go and take it from him, and come back as soon as

So the three mice made themselves a boat and set sail
for the magician's country. When they reached the capital
they landed and ran to the palace, leaving only the
blind mouse on the shore to take care of the boat. Then
they waited till it was night. The wicked old man lay
down in bed and put the bronze ring into his mouth, and
very soon he was asleep.

"Now, what shall we do?" said the two little animals to
each other.

The mouse with the cropped ears found a lamp full of
oil and a bottle full of pepper. So she dipped her tail first
in the oil and then in the pepper, and held it to the
sorcerer's nose.

"Atisha! atisha!" sneezed the old man, but he did not
wake, and the shock made the bronze ring jump out of his
mouth. Quick as thought the lame mouse snatched up the
precious talisman and carried it off to the boat.

Imagine the despair of the magician when he awoke and
the bronze ring was nowhere to be found!

But by that time our three mice had set sail with their
prize. A favoring breeze was carrying them toward the
island where the queen of the mice was awaiting them.
Naturally they began to talk about the bronze ring.

"Which of us deserves the most credit?" they cried all
at once.

"I do," said the blind mouse, "for without my
watchfulness our boat would have drifted away to the open sea."

"No, indeed," cried the mouse with the cropped ears;
"the credit is mine. Did I not cause the ring to jump out
of the man's mouth?"

"No, it is mine," cried the lame one, "for I ran off with
the ring."

And from high words they soon came to blows, and,
alas! when the quarrel was fiercest the bronze ring fell into
the sea.

"How are we to face our queen," said the three mice
"when by our folly we have lost the talisman and condemned
our people to be utterly exterminated? We cannot
go back to our country; let us land on this desert
island and there end our miserable lives." No sooner said
than done. The boat reached the island, and the mice

The blind mouse was speedily deserted by her two
sisters, who went off to hunt flies, but as she wandered
sadly along the shore she found a dead fish, and was eating
it, when she felt something very hard. At her cries the
other two mice ran up.

"It is the bronze ring! It is the talisman!" they cried
joyfully, and, getting into their boat again, they soon
reached the mouse island. It was time they did, for the
captain was just going to land his cargo of cats, when a
deputation of mice brought him the precious bronze ring.

"Bronze ring," commanded the young man, "obey thy
master. Let my ship appear as it was before."

Immediately the genii of the ring set to work, and the
old black vessel became once more the wonderful golden
ship with sails of brocade; the handsome sailors ran to the
silver masts and the silken ropes, and very soon they set
sail for the capital.

Ah! how merrily the sailors sang as they flew over the
glassy sea!

At last the port was reached.

The captain landed and ran to the palace, where he
found the wicked old man asleep. The Princess clasped
her husband in a long embrace. The magician tried to
escape, but he was seized and bound with strong cords.

The next day the sorcerer, tied to the tail of a savage
mule loaded with nuts, was broken into as many pieces as
there were nuts upon the mule's back.[1]

[1] Traditions Populaires de l'Asie Mineure. Carnoy et
Nicolaides. Paris: Maisonneuve, 1889.


Once upon a time there lived a king who was deeply in
love with a princess, but she could not marry anyone,
because she was under an enchantment. So the King set out
to seek a fairy, and asked what he could do to win the
Princess's love. The Fairy said to him:

"You know that the Princess has a great cat which she
is very fond of. Whoever is clever enough to tread on
that cat's tail is the man she is destined to marry."

The King said to himself that this would not be very
difficult, and he left the Fairy, determined to grind the
cat's tail to powder rather than not tread on it at all.

You may imagine that it was not long before he went
to see the Princess, and puss, as usual, marched in before
him, arching his back. The King took a long step, and
quite thought he had the tail under his foot, but the cat
turned round so sharply that he only trod on air. And so
it went on for eight days, till the King began to think that
this fatal tail must be full of quicksilver--it was never
still for a moment.

At last, however, he was lucky enough to come upon
puss fast asleep and with his tail conveniently spread out.
So the King, without losing a moment, set his foot upon it

With one terrific yell the cat sprang up and instantly
changed into a tall man, who, fixing his angry eyes upon
the King, said:

"You shall marry the Princess because you have been
able to break the enchantment, but I will have my
revenge. You shall have a son, who will never be happy
until he finds out that his nose is too long, and if you ever
tell anyone what I have just said to you, you shall vanish
away instantly, and no one shall ever see you or hear of
you again."

Though the King was horribly afraid of the enchanter,
he could not help laughing at this threat.

"If my son has such a long nose as that," he said to
himself, "he must always see it or feel it; at least, if he is
not blind or without hands."

But, as the enchanter had vanished, he did not waste
any more time in thinking, but went to seek the Princess,
who very soon consented to marry him. But after all,
they had not been married very long when the King died,
and the Queen had nothing left to care for but her little
son, who was called Hyacinth. The little Prince had large
blue eyes, the prettiest eyes in the world, and a sweet
little mouth, but, alas! his nose was so enormous that it
covered half his face. The Queen was inconsolable when
she saw this great nose, but her ladies assured her that it
was not really as large as it looked; that it was a Roman
nose, and you had only to open any history to see that
every hero has a large nose. The Queen, who was devoted
to her baby, was pleased with what they told her, and
when she looked at Hyacinth again, his nose certainly did
not seem to her _quite_ so large.

The Prince was brought up with great care; and, as
soon as he could speak, they told him all sorts of dreadful
stories about people who had short noses. No one was
allowed to come near him whose nose did not more or less
resemble his own, and the courtiers, to get into favor with
the Queen, took to pulling their babies' noses several
times every day to make them grow long. But, do what
they would, they were nothing by comparison with the

When he grew sensible he learned history; and whenever
any great prince or beautiful princess was spoken of,
his teachers took care to tell him that they had long noses.

His room was hung with pictures, all of people with
very large noses; and the Prince grew up so convinced
that a long nose was a great beauty, that he would not on
any account have had his own a single inch shorter!

When his twentieth birthday was passed the Queen
thought it was time that he should be married, so she
commanded that the portraits of several princesses should
be brought for him to see, and among the others was a
picture of the Dear Little Princess!

Now, she was the daughter of a great king, and would
some day possess several kingdoms herself; but Prince
Hyacinth had not a thought to spare for anything of that
sort, he was so much struck with her beauty. The Princess,
whom he thought quite charming, had, however, a
little saucy nose, which, in her face, was the prettiest
thing possible, but it was a cause of great embarrassment
to the courtiers, who had got into such a habit of laughing
at little noses that they sometimes found themselves
laughing at hers before they had time to think; but this
did not do at all before the Prince, who quite failed to see
the joke, and actually banished two of his courtiers who
had dared to mention disrespectfully the Dear Little
Princess's tiny nose!

The others, taking warning from this, learned to think
twice before they spoke, and one even went so far as to
tell the Prince that, though it was quite true that no man
could be worth anything unless he had a long nose, still,
a woman's beauty was a different thing; and he knew a
learned man who understood Greek and had read in some
old manuscripts that the beautiful Cleopatra herself had
a "tip-tilted" nose!

The Prince made him a splendid present as a reward for
this good news, and at once sent ambassadors to ask the
Dear Little Princess in marriage. The King, her father,
gave his consent; and Prince Hyacinth, who, in his anxiety
to see the Princess, had gone three leagues to meet her
was just advancing to kiss her hand when, to the horror
of all who stood by, the enchanter appeared as suddenly
as a flash of lightning, and, snatching up the Dear Little
Princess, whirled her away out of their sight!

The Prince was left quite unconsolable, and declared
that nothing should induce him to go back to his kingdom
until he had found her again, and refusing to allow any of
his courtiers to follow him, he mounted his horse and rode
sadly away, letting the animal choose his own path.

So it happened that he came presently to a great plain,
across which he rode all day long without seeing a single
house, and horse and rider were terribly hungry, when, as
the night fell, the Prince caught sight of a light, which
seemed to shine from a cavern.

He rode up to it, and saw a little old woman, who
appeared to be at least a hundred years old.

She put on her spectacles to look at Prince Hyacinth,
but it was quite a long time before she could fix them
securely because her nose was so very short.

The Prince and the Fairy (for that was who she was)
had no sooner looked at one another than they went into
fits of laughter, and cried at the same moment, "Oh, what
a funny nose!"

"Not so funny as your own," said Prince Hyacinth to
the Fairy; "but, madam, I beg you to leave the consideration
of our noses--such as they are--and to be good
enough to give me something to eat, for I am starving,
and so is my poor horse."

"With all my heart," said the Fairy. "Though your nose
is so ridiculous you are, nevertheless, the son of my best
friend. I loved your father as if he had been my brother.
Now _he_ had a very handsome nose!"

"And pray what does mine lack?" said the Prince.

"Oh! it doesn't _lack_ anything," replied the Fairy. "On
the contrary quite, there is only too much of it. But
never mind, one may be a very worthy man though his
nose is too long. I was telling you that I was your father's
friend; he often came to see me in the old times, and you
must know that I was very pretty in those days; at least,
he used to say so. I should like to tell you of a conversation
we had the last time I ever saw him."

"Indeed," said the Prince, "when I have supped it will
give me the greatest pleasure to hear it; but consider,
madam, I beg of you, that I have had nothing to eat

"The poor boy is right," said the Fairy; "I was
forgetting. Come in, then, and I will give you some supper, and
while you are eating I can tell you my story in a very few
words--for I don't like endless tales myself. Too long a
tongue is worse than too long a nose, and I remember
when I was young that I was so much admired for not
being a great chatterer. They used to tell the Queen, my
mother, that it was so. For though you see what I am
now, I was the daughter of a great king. My father----"

"Your father, I dare say, got something to eat when he
was hungry!" interrupted the Prince.

"Oh! certainly," answered the Fairy, "and you also
shall have supper directly. I only just wanted to tell

"But I really cannot listen to anything until I have had
something to eat," cried the Prince, who was getting quite
angry; but then, remembering that he had better be
polite as he much needed the Fairy's help, he added:

"I know that in the pleasure of listening to you I should
quite forget my own hunger; but my horse, who cannot
hear you, must really be fed!"

The Fairy was very much flattered by this compliment,
and said, calling to her servants:

"You shall not wait another minute, you are so polite,
and in spite of the enormous size of your nose you are
really very agreeable."

"Plague take the old lady! How she does go on about
my nose!" said the Prince to himself. "One would almost
think that mine had taken all the extra length that hers
lacks! If I were not so hungry I would soon have done
with this chatterpie who thinks she talks very little! How
stupid people are not to see their own faults! That comes
of being a princess: she has been spoiled by flatterers, who
have made her believe that she is quite a moderate talker!"

Meanwhile the servants were putting the supper on the
table, and the prince was much amused to hear the Fairy
who asked them a thousand questions simply for the
pleasure of hearing herself speak; especially he noticed
one maid who, no matter what was being said, always
contrived to praise her mistress's wisdom.

"Well!" he thought, as he ate his supper, "I'm very glad
I came here. This just shows me how sensible I have been
in never listening to flatterers. People of that sort praise
us to our faces without shame, and hide our faults or
change them into virtues. For my part I never will be
taken in by them. I know my own defects, I hope."

Poor Prince Hyacinth! He really believed what he said,
and hadn't an idea that the people who had praised his
nose were laughing at him, just as the Fairy's maid was
laughing at her; for the Prince had seen her laugh slyly
when she could do so without the Fairy's noticing her.

However, he said nothing, and presently, when his
hunger began to be appeased, the Fairy said:

"My dear Prince, might I beg you to move a little more
that way, for your nose casts such a shadow that I really
cannot see what I have on my plate. Ah! thanks. Now
let us speak of your father. When I went to his Court he
was only a little boy, but that is forty years ago, and I
have been in this desolate place ever since. Tell me what
goes on nowadays; are the ladies as fond of amusement as
ever? In my time one saw them at parties, theatres, balls,
and promenades every day. Dear me! _what_ a long nose
you have! I cannot get used to it!"

"Really, madam," said the Prince, "I wish you would
leave off mentioning my nose. It cannot matter to you
what it is like. I am quite satisfied with it, and have no
wish to have it shorter. One must take what is given one."

"Now you are angry with me, my poor Hyacinth," said
the Fairy, "and I assure you that I didn't mean to vex
you; on the contrary, I wished to do you a service. However,
though I really cannot help your nose being a shock
to me, I will try not to say anything about it. I will even
try to think that you have an ordinary nose. To tell the
truth, it would make three reasonable ones."

The Prince, who was no longer hungry, grew so impatient
at the Fairy's continual remarks about his nose that
at last he threw himself upon his horse and rode hastily
away. But wherever he came in his journeyings he thought
the people were mad, for they all talked of his nose, and
yet he could not bring himself to admit that it was too
long, he had been so used all his life to hear it called handsome.

The old Fairy, who wished to make him happy, at last
hit upon a plan. She shut the Dear Little Princess up in
a palace of crystal, and put this palace down where the
Prince would not fail to find it. His joy at seeing the
Princess again was extreme, and he set to work with all
his might to try to break her prison; but in spite of all his
efforts he failed utterly. In despair he thought at least
that he would try to get near enough to speak to the Dear
Little Princess, who, on her part, stretched out her hand
that he might kiss it; but turn which way he might, he
never could raise it to his lips, for his long nose always
prevented it. For the first time he realized how long it
really was, and exclaimed:

"Well, it must be admitted that my nose _is_ too long!"

In an instant the crystal prison flew into a thousand
splinters, and the old Fairy, taking the Dear Little Princess
by the hand, said to the Prince:

"Now, say if you are not very much obliged to me.
Much good it was for me to talk to you about your nose!
You would never have found out how extraordinary it
was if it hadn't hindered you from doing what you wanted
to. You see how self-love keeps us from knowing our own
defects of mind and body. Our reason tries in vain to
show them to us; we refuse to see them till we find them
in the way of our interests."

Prince Hyacinth, whose nose was now just like anyone's
else, did not fail to profit by the lesson he had
received. He married the Dear Little Princess, and they
lived happily ever after.[1]

[1] Le Prince Desir et la Princesse Mignonne. Par Madame
Leprince de Beaumont.


Once upon a time there was a poor husbandman who
had many children and little to give them in the way
either of food or clothing. They were all pretty, but the
prettiest of all was the youngest daughter, who was so
beautiful that there were no bounds to her beauty.

So once--it was late on a Thursday evening in autumn,
and wild weather outside, terribly dark, and raining so
heavily and blowing so hard that the walls of the cottage
shook again--they were all sitting together by the fireside,
each of them busy with something or other, when suddenly
some one rapped three times against the window-pane. The
man went out to see what could be the matter, and when he
got out there stood a great big white bear.

"Good-evening to you," said the White Bear.

"Good-evening," said the man.

"Will you give me your youngest daughter?" said the
White Bear; "if you will, you shall be as rich as you are
now poor."

Truly the man would have had no objection to be rich,
but he thought to himself: "I must first ask my daughter
about this," so he went in and told them that there was a
great white bear outside who had faithfully promised to
make them all rich if he might but have the youngest

She said no, and would not hear of it; so the man went
out again, and settled with the White Bear that he should
come again next Thursday evening, and get her answer.
Then the man persuaded her, and talked so much to her
about the wealth that they would have, and what a good
thing it would be for herself, that at last she made up her
mind to go, and washed and mended all her rags, made
herself as smart as she could, and held herself in readiness
to set out. Little enough had she to take away with her.

Next Thursday evening the White Bear came to fetch
her. She seated herself on his back with her bundle, and
thus they departed. When they had gone a great part of
the way, the White Bear said: "Are you afraid?"

"No, that I am not," said she.

"Keep tight hold of my fur, and then there is no
danger," said he.

And thus she rode far, far away, until they came to a
great mountain. Then the White Bear knocked on it, and
a door opened, and they went into a castle where there
were many brilliantly lighted rooms which shone with
gold and silver, likewise a large hall in which there was a
well-spread table, and it was so magnificent that it would
be hard to make anyone understand how splendid it was.
The White Bear gave her a silver bell, and told her that
when she needed anything she had but to ring this bell,
and what she wanted would appear. So after she had
eaten, and night was drawing near, she grew sleepy after
her journey, and thought she would like to go to bed.
She rang the bell, and scarcely had she touched it before
she found herself in a chamber where a bed stood ready
made for her, which was as pretty as anyone could wish
to sleep in. It had pillows of silk, and curtains of silk
fringed with gold, and everything that was in the room
was of gold or silver, but when she had lain down and
put out the light a man came and lay down beside her,
and behold it was the White Bear, who cast off the form
of a beast during the night. She never saw him, however,
for he always came after she had put out her light, and
went away before daylight appeared.

So all went well and happily for a time, but then she
began to be very sad and sorrowful, for all day long she
had to go about alone; and she did so wish to go home to
her father and mother and brothers and sisters. Then the
White Bear asked what it was that she wanted, and she
told him that it was so dull there in the mountain, and
that she had to go about all alone, and that in her parents'
house at home there were all her brothers and sisters, and
it was because she could not go to them that she was so

"There might be a cure for that," said the White Bear,
"if you would but promise me never to talk with your
mother alone, but only when the others are there too; for
she will take hold of your hand," he said, "and will want
to lead you into a room to talk with you alone; but that
you must by no means do, or you will bring great misery
on both of us."

So one Sunday the White Bear came and said that they
could now set out to see her father and mother, and they
journeyed thither, she sitting on his back, and they went
a long, long way, and it took a long, long time; but at last
they came to a large white farmhouse, and her brothers
and sisters were running about outside it, playing, and it
was so pretty that it was a pleasure to look at it.

"Your parents dwell here now," said the White Bear;
"but do not forget what I said to you, or you will do much
harm both to yourself and me."

"No, indeed," said she, "I shall never forget;" and as
soon as she was at home the White Bear turned round and
went back again.

There were such rejoicings when she went in to her
parents that it seemed as if they would never come to an
end. Everyone thought that he could never be sufficiently
grateful to her for all she had done for them all. Now they
had everything that they wanted, and everything was as
good as it could be. They all asked her how she was getting
on where she was. All was well with her too, she said;
and she had everything that she could want. What other
answers she gave I cannot say, but I am pretty sure that
they did not learn much from her. But in the afternoon,
after they had dined at midday, all happened just as the
White Bear had said. Her mother wanted to talk with
her alone in her own chamber. But she remembered what
the White Bear had said, and would on no account go.
"What we have to say can be said at any time," she
answered. But somehow or other her mother at last
persuaded her, and she was forced to tell the whole story. So
she told how every night a man came and lay down beside
her when the lights were all put out, and how she never
saw him, because he always went away before it grew
light in the morning, and how she continually went about
in sadness, thinking how happy she would be if she could
but see him, and how all day long she had to go about
alone, and it was so dull and solitary. "Oh!" cried the
mother, in horror, "you are very likely sleeping with a
troll! But I will teach you a way to see him. You shall
have a bit of one of my candles, which you can take away
with you hidden in your breast. Look at him with that
when he is asleep, but take care not to let any tallow drop
upon him."

So she took the candle, and hid it in her breast, and
when evening drew near the White Bear came to fetch her
away. When they had gone some distance on their way,
the White Bear asked her if everything had not happened
just as he had foretold, and she could not but own that it
had. "Then, if you have done what your mother wished,"
said he, "you have brought great misery on both of us."
"No," she said, "I have not done anything at all." So
when she had reached home and had gone to bed it was
just the same as it had been before, and a man came and
lay down beside her, and late at night, when she could
hear that he was sleeping, she got up and kindled a light,
lit her candle, let her light shine on him, and saw him, and
he was the handsomest prince that eyes had ever beheld,
and she loved him so much that it seemed to her that she
must die if she did not kiss him that very moment. So
she did kiss him; but while she was doing it she let three
drops of hot tallow fall upon his shirt, and he awoke.
"What have you done now?" said he; "you have brought
misery on both of us. If you had but held out for the
space of one year I should have been free. I have a
step-mother who has bewitched me so that I am a white bear
by day and a man by night; but now all is at an end
between you and me, and I must leave you, and go to her.
She lives in a castle which lies east of the sun and west of
the moon, and there too is a princess with a nose which
is three ells long, and she now is the one whom I must

She wept and lamented, but all in vain, for go he must.
Then she asked him if she could not go with him. But
no, that could not be. "Can you tell me the way then,
and I will seek you--that I may surely be allowed to do!"

"Yes, you may do that," said he; "but there is no way
thither. It lies east of the sun and west of the moon, and
never would you find your way there."

When she awoke in the morning both the Prince and
the castle were gone, and she was lying on a small green
patch in the midst of a dark, thick wood. By her side lay
the self-same bundle of rags which she had brought with
her from her own home. So when she had rubbed the
sleep out of her eyes, and wept till she was weary, she
set out on her way, and thus she walked for many and
many a long day, until at last she came to a great mountain.
Outside it an aged woman was sitting, playing with
a golden apple. The girl asked her if she knew the way
to the Prince who lived with his stepmother in the castle
which lay east of the sun and west of the moon, and who
was to marry a princess with a nose which was three ells
long. "How do you happen to know about him?"
inquired the old woman; "maybe you are she who ought to
have had him." "Yes, indeed, I am," she said. "So it is
you, then?" said the old woman; "I know nothing about
him but that he dwells in a castle which is east of the sun
and west of the moon. You will be a long time in getting
to it, if ever you get to it at all; but you shall have the
loan of my horse, and then you can ride on it to an old
woman who is a neighbor of mine: perhaps she can tell
you about him. When you have got there you must just
strike the horse beneath the left ear and bid it go home
again; but you may take the golden apple with you."

So the girl seated herself on the horse, and rode for a
long, long way, and at last she came to the mountain, where
an aged woman was sitting outside with a gold carding-comb.
The girl asked her if she knew the way to the
castle which lay east of the sun and west of the moon;
but she said what the first old woman had said: "I know
nothing about it, but that it is east of the sun and west
of the moon, and that you will be a long time in getting
to it, if ever you get there at all; but you shall have the
loan of my horse to an old woman who lives the nearest
to me: perhaps she may know where the castle is, and
when you have got to her you may just strike the horse
beneath the left ear and bid it go home again." Then she
gave her the gold carding-comb, for it might, perhaps, be
of use to her, she said.

So the girl seated herself on the horse, and rode a
wearisome long way onward again, and after a very long time
she came to a great mountain, where an aged woman was
sitting, spinning at a golden spinning-wheel. Of this
woman, too, she inquired if she knew the way to the
Prince, and where to find the castle which lay east of the
sun and west of the moon. But it was only the same
thing once again. "Maybe it was you who should have
had the Prince," said the old woman. "Yes, indeed, I
should have been the one," said the girl. But this old
crone knew the way no better than the others--it was
east of the sun and west of the moon, she knew that, "and
you will be a long time in getting to it, if ever you get to
it at all," she said; "but you may have the loan of my
horse, and I think you had better ride to the East Wind,
and ask him: perhaps he may know where the castle is,
and will blow you thither. But when you have got to
him you must just strike the horse beneath the left ear,
and he will come home again." And then she gave her the
golden spinning-wheel, saying: "Perhaps you may find
that you have a use for it."

The girl had to ride for a great many days, and for a
long and wearisome time, before she got there; but at last
she did arrive, and then she asked the East Wind if he
could tell her the way to the Prince who dwelt east of the
sun and west of the moon. "Well," said the East Wind,
"I have heard tell of the Prince, and of his castle, but I
do not know the way to it, for I have never blown so far;
but, if you like, I will go with you to my brother the West
Wind: he may know that, for he is much stronger than I
am. You may sit on my back, and then I can carry you
there." So she seated herself on his back, and they did go
so swiftly! When they got there, the East Wind went in
and said that the girl whom he had brought was the one
who ought to have had the Prince up at the castle which
lay east of the sun and west of the moon, and that now she
was traveling about to find him again, so he had come
there with her, and would like to hear if the West Wind
knew whereabout the castle was. "No," said the West
Wind; "so far as that have I never blown; but if you like
I will go with you to the South Wind, for he is much
stronger than either of us, and he has roamed far and wide,
and perhaps he can tell you what you want to know. You
may seat yourself on my back, and then I will carry you
to him.".

So she did this, and journeyed to the South Wind,
neither was she very long on the way. When they had got
there, the West Wind asked him if he could tell her the
way to the castle that lay east of the sun and west of the
moon, for she was the girl who ought to marry the Prince
who lived there. "Oh, indeed!" said the South Wind, "is
that she? Well," said he, "I have wandered about a great
deal in my time, and in all kinds of places, but I have
never blown so far as that. If you like, however, I will go
with you to my brother, the North Wind; he is the oldest
and strongest of all of us, and if he does not know where
it is no one in the whole world will be able to tell you.
You may sit upon my back, and then I will carry you
there." So she seated herself on his back, and off he went
from his house in great haste, and they were not long on
the way. When they came near the North Wind's dwelling,
he was so wild and frantic that they felt cold gusts a
long while before they got there. "What do you want?"
he roared out from afar, and they froze as they heard.
Said the South Wind: "It is I, and this is she who should
have had the Prince who lives in the castle which lies east
of the sun and west of the moon. And now she wishes to
ask you if you have ever been there, and can tell her the
way, for she would gladly find him again."

"Yes," said the North Wind, "I know where it is. I
once blew an aspen leaf there, but I was so tired that for
many days afterward I was not able to blow at all. However,
if you really are anxious to go there, and are not
afraid to go with me, I will take you on my back, and try
if I can blow you there."

"Get there I must," said she; "and if there is any way
of going I will; and I have no fear, no matter how fast you

"Very well then," said the North Wind; "but you must
sleep here to-night, for if we are ever to get there we must
have the day before us."

The North Wind woke her betimes next morning, and
puffed himself up, and made himself so big and so strong
that it was frightful to see him, and away they went, high
up through the air, as if they would not stop until they
had reached the very end of the world. Down below there
was such a storm! It blew down woods and houses, and
when they were above the sea the ships were wrecked by
hundreds. And thus they tore on and on, and a long time
went by, and then yet more time passed, and still they
were above the sea, and the North Wind grew tired, and
more tired, and at last so utterly weary that he was scarcely
able to blow any longer, and he sank and sank, lower
and lower, until at last he went so low that the waves
dashed against the heels of the poor girl he was carrying.
"Art thou afraid?" said the North Wind. "I have no
fear," said she; and it was true. But they were not very,
very far from land, and there was just enough strength
left in the North Wind to enable him to throw her on to
the shore, immediately under the windows of a castle
which lay east of the sun and west of the moon; but then
he was so weary and worn out that he was forced to rest
for several days before he could go to his own home again.

Next morning she sat down beneath the walls of the
castle to play with the golden apple, and the first person
she saw was the maiden with the long nose, who was to
have the Prince. "How much do you want for that gold
apple of yours, girl?" said she, opening the window. "It
can't be bought either for gold or money," answered the
girl. "If it cannot be bought either for gold or money,
what will buy it? You may say what you please," said
the Princess.

"Well, if I may go to the Prince who is here, and be
with him to-night, you shall have it," said the girl who
had come with the North Wind. "You may do that," said
the Princess, for she had made up her mind what she
would do. So the Princess got the golden apple, but when
the girl went up to the Prince's apartment that night he
was asleep, for the Princess had so contrived it. The poor
girl called to him, and shook him, and between whiles she
wept; but she could not wake him. In the morning, as
soon as day dawned, in came the Princess with the long
nose, and drove her out again. In the daytime she sat
down once more beneath the windows of the castle, and
began to card with her golden carding-comb; and then all
happened as it had happened before. The Princess asked
her what she wanted for it, and she replied that it was not
for sale, either for gold or money, but that if she could get
leave to go to the Prince, and be with him during the
night, she should have it. But when she went up to the
Prince's room he was again asleep, and, let her call him,
or shake him, or weep as she would, he still slept on, and
she could not put any life in him. When daylight came in
the morning, the Princess with the long nose came too,
and once more drove her away. When day had quite
come, the girl seated herself under the castle windows, to
spin with her golden spinning-wheel, and the Princess
with the long nose wanted to have that also. So she
opened the window, and asked what she would take for
it. The girl said what she had said on each of the former
occasions--that it was not for sale either for gold or for
money, but if she could get leave to go to the Prince who
lived there, and be with him during the night, she should
have it.

"Yes," said the Princess, "I will gladly consent to that."

But in that place there were some Christian folk who
had been carried off, and they had been sitting in the
chamber which was next to that of the Prince, and had
heard how a woman had been in there who had wept and
called on him two nights running, and they told the
Prince of this. So that evening, when the Princess came
once more with her sleeping-drink, he pretended to drink,
but threw it away behind him, for he suspected that it
was a sleeping-drink. So, when the girl went into the
Prince's room this time he was awake, and she had to tell
him how she had come there. "You have come just in
time," said the Prince, "for I should have been married
to-morrow; but I will not have the long-nosed Princess,
and you alone can save me. I will say that I want to see
what my bride can do, and bid her wash the shirt which
has the three drops of tallow on it. This she will consent
to do, for she does not know that it is you who let them
fall on it; but no one can wash them out but one born of
Christian folk: it cannot be done by one of a pack of
trolls; and then I will say that no one shall ever be my bride
but the woman who can do this, and I know that you
can." There was great joy and gladness between them all
that night, but the next day, when the wedding was to
take place, the Prince said, "I must see what my bride
can do." "That you may do," said the stepmother.

"I have a fine shirt which I want to wear as my wedding
shirt, but three drops of tallow have got upon it which I
want to have washed off, and I have vowed to marry no
one but the woman who is able to do it. If she cannot do
that, she is not worth having."

Well, that was a very small matter, they thought, and
agreed to do it. The Princess with the long nose began
to wash as well as she could, but, the more she washed and
rubbed, the larger the spots grew. "Ah! you can't wash
at all," said the old troll-hag, who was her mother. "Give
it to me." But she too had not had the shirt very long in
her hands before it looked worse still, and, the more she
washed it and rubbed it, the larger and blacker grew the

So the other trolls had to come and wash, but, the more
they did, the blacker and uglier grew the shirt, until at
length it was as black as if it had been up the chimney.
"Oh," cried the Prince, "not one of you is good for
anything at all! There is a beggar-girl sitting outside the
window, and I'll be bound that she can wash better than
any of you! Come in, you girl there!" he cried. So she
came in. "Can you wash this shirt clean?" he cried. "Oh!
I don't know," she said; "but I will try." And no sooner
had she taken the shirt and dipped it in the water than
it was white as driven snow, and even whiter than that.
"I will marry you," said the Prince.

Then the old troll-hag flew into such a rage that she
burst, and the Princess with the long nose and all the
little trolls must have burst too, for they have never been
heard of since. The Prince and his bride set free all the
Christian folk who were imprisoned there, and took away
with them all the gold and silver that they could carry,
and moved far away from the castle which lay east of the
sun and west of the moon.[1]

[1] Asbjornsen and Moe.


Once upon a time there lived a queen who had been the
mother of a great many children, and of them all only one
daughter was left. But then _she_ was worth at least a thousand.

Her mother, who, since the death of the King, her
father, had nothing in the world she cared for so much as
this little Princess, was so terribly afraid of losing her that
she quite spoiled her, and never tried to correct any of her
faults. The consequence was that this little person, who
was as pretty as possible, and was one day to wear a crown,
grew up so proud and so much in love with her own beauty
that she despised everyone else in the world.

The Queen, her mother, by her caresses and flatteries,
helped to make her believe that there was nothing too
good for her. She was dressed almost always in the prettiest
frocks, as a fairy, or as a queen going out to hunt, and
the ladies of the Court followed her dressed as forest

And to make her more vain than ever the Queen caused
her portrait to be taken by the cleverest painters and sent
it to several neighboring kings with whom she was very

When they saw this portrait they fell in love with the
Princess--every one of them, but upon each it had a
different effect. One fell ill, one went quite crazy, and a
few of the luckiest set off to see her as soon as possible,
but these poor princes became her slaves the moment they
set eyes on her.

Never has there been a gayer Court. Twenty delightful
kings did everything they could think of to make
themselves agreeable, and after having spent ever so
much money in giving a single entertainment thought
themselves very lucky if the Princess said "That's pretty."

All this admiration vastly pleased the Queen. Not a
day passed but she received seven or eight thousand
sonnets, and as many elegies, madrigals, and songs, which
were sent her by all the poets in the world. All the prose
and the poetry that was written just then was about
Bellissima--for that was the Princess's name--and all the
bonfires that they had were made of these verses, which
crackled and sparkled better than any other sort of wood.

Bellissima was already fifteen years old, and every one
of the Princes wished to marry her, but not one dared to
say so. How could they when they knew that any of
them might have cut off his head five or six times a day
just to please her, and she would have thought it a mere
trifle, so little did she care? You may imagine how
hard-hearted her lovers thought her; and the Queen, who
wished to see her married, did not know how to persuade
her to think of it seriously.

"Bellissima," she said, "I do wish you would not be so
proud. What makes you despise all these nice kings? I
wish you to marry one of them, and you do not try to
please me."

"I am so happy," Bellissima answered: "do leave me in
peace, madam. I don't want to care for anyone."

"But you would be very happy with any of these
Princes," said the Queen, "and I shall be very angry if you
fall in love with anyone who is not worthy of you."

But the Princess thought so much of herself that she
did not consider any one of her lovers clever or handsome
enough for her; and her mother, who was getting really
angry at her determination not to be married, began to
wish that she had not allowed her to have her own way so

At last, not knowing what else to do, she resolved to
consult a certain witch who was called "The Fairy of the
Desert." Now this was very difficult to do, as she was
guarded by some terrible lions; but happily the Queen
had heard a long time before that whoever wanted to pass
these lions safely must throw to them a cake made of
millet flour, sugar-candy, and crocodile's eggs. This cake
she prepared with her own hands, and putting it in a
little basket, she set out to seek the Fairy. But as she
was not used to walking far, she soon felt very tired and
sat down at the foot of a tree to rest, and presently fell
fast asleep. When she awoke she was dismayed to find
her basket empty. The cake was all gone! and, to make
matters worse, at that moment she heard the roaring of
the great lions, who had found out that she was near and
were coming to look for her.

"What shall I do?" she cried; "I shall be eaten up," and
being too frightened to run a single step, she began to cry,
and leaned against the tree under which she had been

Just then she heard some one say: "H'm, h'm!"

She looked all round her, and then up the tree, and
there she saw a little tiny man, who was eating oranges.

"Oh! Queen," said he, "I know you very well, and I
know how much afraid you are of the lions; and you are
quite right too, for they have eaten many other people:
and what can you expect, as you have not any cake to
give them?"

"I must make up my mind to die," said the poor Queen.
"Alas! I should not care so much if only my dear daughter
were married."

"Oh! you have a daughter," cried the Yellow Dwarf
(who was so called because he _was_ a dwarf and had such
a yellow face, and lived in the orange tree). "I'm really
glad to hear that, for I've been looking for a wife all over
the world. Now, if you will promise that she shall marry
me, not one of the lions, tigers, or bears shall touch you."

The Queen looked at him and was almost as much
afraid of his ugly little face as she had been of the lions
before, so that she could not speak a word.

"What! you hesitate, madam," cried the Dwarf. "You
must be very fond of being eaten up alive."

And, as he spoke, the Queen saw the lions, which were
running down a hill toward them.

Each one had two heads, eight feet, and four rows of
teeth, and their skins were as hard as turtle shells, and
were bright red.

At this dreadful sight, the poor Queen, who was
trembling like a dove when it sees a hawk, cried out as loud as
she could, "Oh! dear Mr. Dwarf, Bellissima shall marry

"Oh, indeed!" said he disdainfully. "Bellissima is pretty
enough, but I don't particularly want to marry her--you
can keep her."

"Oh! noble sir," said the Queen in great distress, ado
not refuse her. She is the most charming Princess in the

"Oh! well," he replied, "out of charity I will take her;
but be sure and don't forget that she is mine."

As he spoke a little door opened in the trunk of the
orange tree, in rushed the Queen, only just in time, and
the door shut with a bang in the faces of the lions.

The Queen was so confused that at first she did not
notice another little door in the orange tree, but presently
it opened and she found herself in a field of thistles and
nettles. It was encircled by a muddy ditch, and a little
further on was a tiny thatched cottage, out of which came
the Yellow Dwarf with a very jaunty air. He wore wooden
shoes and a little yellow coat, and as he had no hair and
very long ears he looked altogether a shocking little

"I am delighted," said he to the Queen, "that, as you
are to be my mother-in-law, you should see the little
house in which your Bellissima will live with me. With
these thistles and nettles she can feed a donkey which she
can ride whenever she likes; under this humble roof no
weather can hurt her; she will drink the water of this
brook and eat frogs--which grow very fat about here; and
then she will have me always with her, handsome, agreeable,
and gay as you see me now. For if her shadow stays
by her more closely than I do I shall be surprised."

The unhappy Queen. seeing all at once what a miserable
life her daughter would have with this Dwarf
could not bear the idea, and fell down insensible without
saying a word.

When she revived she found to her great surprise that
she was lying in her own bed at home, and, what was
more, that she had on the loveliest lace night cap that she
had ever seen in her life. At first she thought that all her
adventures, the terrible lions, and her promise to the
Yellow Dwarf that he should marry Bellissima, must
have been a dream, but there was the new cap with its
beautiful ribbon and lace to remind her that it was all
true, which made her so unhappy that she could neither
eat, drink, nor sleep for thinking of it.

The Princess, who, in spite of her wilfulness, really loved
her mother with all her heart, was much grieved when she
saw her looking so sad, and often asked her what was the
matter; but the Queen, who didn't want her to find out
the truth, only said that she was ill, or that one of her
neighbors was threatening to make war against her.
Bellissima knew quite well that something was being
hidden from her--and that neither of these was the real
reason of the Queen's uneasiness. So she made up her
mind that she would go and consult the Fairy of the
Desert about it, especially as she had often heard how
wise she was, and she thought that at the same time she
might ask her advice as to whether it would be as well to
be married, or not.

So, with great care, she made some of the proper cake
to pacify the lions, and one night went up to her room
very early, pretending that she was going to bed; but
instead of that, she wrapped herself in a long white veil,
and went down a secret staircase, and set off all by herself
to find the Witch.

But when she got as far as the same fatal orange tree,
and saw it covered with flowers and fruit, she stopped and
began to gather some of the oranges--and then, putting
down her basket, she sat down to eat them. But when
it was time to go on again the basket had disappeared
and, though she looked everywhere, not a trace of it
could she find. The more she hunted for it, the more
frightened she got, and at last she began to cry. Then all
at once she saw before her the Yellow Dwarf.

"What's the matter with you, my pretty one?" said he.
"What are you crying about?"

"Alas!" she answered; "no wonder that I am crying,
seeing that I have lost the basket of cake that was to
help me to get safely to the cave of the Fairy of the

"And what do you want with her, pretty one?" said the
little monster, "for I am a friend of hers, and, for the
matter of that, I am quite as clever as she is."

"The Queen, my mother," replied the Princess, "has
lately fallen into such deep sadness that I fear that she
will die; and I am afraid that perhaps I am the cause of
it, for she very much wishes me to be married, and I must
tell you truly that as yet I have not found anyone I consider
worthy to be my husband. So for all these reasons
I wished to talk to the Fairy."

"Do not give yourself any further trouble, Princess,"
answered the Dwarf. "I can tell you all you want to
know better than she could. The Queen, your mother,
has promised you in marriage----"

"Has promised _me!_" interrupted the Princess. "Oh! no.
I'm sure she has not. She would have told me if she had.
I am too much interested in the matter for her to promise
anything without my consent--you must be mistaken."

"Beautiful Princess," cried the Dwarf suddenly, throwing
himself on his knees before her, "I flatter myself that
you will not be displeased at her choice when I tell you
that it is to _me_ she has promised the happiness of marrying you."

"You!" cried Bellissima, starting back. "My mother
wishes me to marry you! How can you be so silly as to
think of such a thing?"

"Oh! it isn't that I care much to have that honor,"
cried the Dwarf angrily; "but here are the lions coming;
they'll eat you up in three mouthfuls, and there will be an
end of you and your pride."

And, indeed, at that moment the poor Princess heard
their dreadful howls coming nearer and nearer.

"What shall I do?" she cried. "Must all my happy days
come to an end like this?"

The malicious Dwarf looked at her and began to laugh
spitefully. "At least," said he, "you have the satisfaction
of dying unmarried. A lovely Princess like you must
surely prefer to die rather than be the wife of a poor little
dwarf like myself."

"Oh, don't be angry with me," cried the Princess,
clasping her hands. "I'd rather marry all the dwarfs in
the world than die in this horrible way."

"Look at me well, Princess, before you give me your
word," said he. "I don't want you to promise me in a

"Oh!" cried she, "the lions are coming. I have looked
at you enough. I am so frightened. Save me this minute,
or I shall die of terror."

Indeed, as she spoke she fell down insensible, and when
she recovered she found herself in her own little bed at
home; how she got there she could not tell, but she was
dressed in the most beautiful lace and ribbons, and on her
finger was a little ring, made of a single red hair, which
fitted so tightly that, try as she might, she could not get
it off.

When the Princess saw all these things, and remembered
what had happened, she, too, fell into the deepest
sadness, which surprised and alarmed the whole Court,
and the Queen more than anyone else. A hundred times
she asked Bellissima if anything was the matter with her;
but she always said that there was nothing.

At last the chief men of the kingdom, anxious to see
their Princess married, sent to the Queen to beg her to
choose a husband for her as soon as possible. She replied
that nothing would please her better, but that her daughter
seemed so unwilling to marry, and she recommended
them to go and talk to the Princess about it themselves
so this they at once did. Now Bellissima was much less
proud since her adventure with the Yellow Dwarf, and
she could not think of a better way of getting rid of the
little monster than to marry some powerful king, therefore
she replied to their request much more favorably
than they had hoped, saying that, though she was very
happy as she was, still, to please them, she would consent
to marry the King of the Gold Mines. Now he was a very
handsome and powerful Prince, who had been in love
with the Princess for years, but had not thought that she
would ever care about him at all. You can easily imagine
how delighted he was when he heard the news, and how
angry it made all the other kings to lose for ever the hope
of marrying the Princess; but, after all, Bellissima could
not have married twenty kings--indeed, she had found
it quite difficult enough to choose one, for her vanity
made her believe that there was nobody in the world who
was worthy of her.

Preparations were begun at once for the grandest wedding
that had ever been held at the palace. The King of
the Gold Mines sent such immense sums of money that
the whole sea was covered with the ships that brought it.
Messengers were sent to all the gayest and most refined
Courts, particularly to the Court of France, to seek out
everything rare and precious to adorn the Princess,
although her beauty was so perfect that nothing she wore
could make her look prettier. At least that is what the
King of the Gold Mines thought, and he was never happy
unless he was with her.

As for the Princess, the more she saw of the King the
more she liked him; he was so generous, so handsome and
clever, that at last she was almost as much in love with
him as he was with her. How happy they were as they
wandered about in the beautiful gardens together, sometimes
listening to sweet music! And the King used to write songs
for Bellissima. This is one that she liked very much:

  In the forest all is gay
  When my Princess walks that way.
  All the blossoms then are found
  Downward fluttering to the ground,
  Hoping she may tread on them.
  And bright flowers on slender stem
  Gaze up at her as she passes
  Brushing lightly through the grasses.
  Oh! my Princess, birds above
  Echo back our songs of love,
  As through this enchanted land
  Blithe we wander, hand in hand.

They really were as happy as the day was long. All the
King's unsuccessful rivals had gone home in despair.
They said good-by to the Princess so sadly that she could
not help being sorry for them.

"Ah! madam," the King of the Gold Mines said to her
"how is this? Why do you waste your pity on these
princes, who love you so much that all their trouble would
be well repaid by a single smile from you?"

"I should be sorry," answered Bellissima, "if you had
not noticed how much I pitied these princes who were
leaving me for ever; but for you, sire, it is very different:
you have every reason to be pleased with me, but they are
going sorrowfully away, so you must not grudge them my

The King of the Gold Mines was quite overcome by the
Princess's good-natured way of taking his interference,
and, throwing himself at her feet, he kissed her hand a
thousand times and begged her to forgive him.

At last the happy day came. Everything was ready
for Bellissima's wedding. The trumpets sounded, all the
streets of the town were hung with flags and strewn with
flowers, and the people ran in crowds to the great square
before the palace. The Queen was so overjoyed that she
had hardly been able to sleep at all, and she got up before
it was light to give the necessary orders and to choose the
jewels that the Princess was to wear. These were nothing
less than diamonds, even to her shoes, which were covered
with them, and her dress of silver brocade was embroidered
with a dozen of the sun's rays. You may imagine
how much these had cost; but then nothing could have
been more brilliant, except the beauty of the Princess!
Upon her head she wore a splendid crown, her lovely hair
waved nearly to her feet, and her stately figure could
easily be distinguished among all the ladies who attended

The King of the Gold Mines was not less noble and
splendid; it was easy to see by his face how happy he was,
and everyone who went near him returned loaded with
presents, for all round the great banqueting hall had been
arranged a thousand barrels full of gold, and numberless
bags made of velvet embroidered with pearls and filled
with money, each one containing at least a hundred
thousand gold pieces, which were given away to everyone
who liked to hold out his hand, which numbers of people
hastened to do, you may be sure--indeed, some found
this by far the most amusing part of the wedding festivities.

The Queen and the Princess were just ready to set out
with the King when they saw, advancing toward them
from the end of the long gallery, two great basilisks,
dragging after them a very badly made box; behind them
came a tall old woman, whose ugliness was even more
surprising than her extreme old age. She wore a ruff of
black taffeta, a red velvet hood, and a farthingale all in
rags, and she leaned heavily upon a crutch. This strange
old woman, without saying a single word, hobbled three
times round the gallery, followed by the basilisks, then
stopping in the middle, and brandishing her crutch
threateningly, she cried:

"Ho, ho, Queen! Ho, ho, Princess! Do you think you
are going to break with impunity the promise that you
made to my friend the Yellow Dwarf? I am the Fairy of
the Desert; without the Yellow Dwarf and his orange tree
my great lions would soon have eaten you up, I can tell
you, and in Fairyland we do not suffer ourselves to be
insulted like this. Make up your minds at once what you
will do, for I vow that you shall marry the Yellow Dwarf.
If you don't, may I burn my crutch!"

"Ah! Princess," said the Queen, weeping, "what is this
that I hear? What have you promised?"

"Ah! my mother," replied Bellissima sadly, "what did
_you_ promise, yourself?"

The King of the Gold Mines, indignant at being kept
from his happiness by this wicked old woman, went up to
her, and threatening her with his sword, said:

"Get away out of my country at once, and for ever,
miserable creature, lest I take your life, and so rid myself
of your malice."

He had hardly spoken these words when the lid of the
box fell back on the floor with a terrible noise, and to their
horror out sprang the Yellow Dwarf, mounted upon a
great Spanish cat. "Rash youth!" he cried, rushing between
the Fairy of the Desert and the King. "Dare to
lay a finger upon this illustrious Fairy! Your quarrel is
with me only. I am your enemy and your rival. That
faithless Princess who would have married you is promised
to me. See if she has not upon her finger a ring made of
one of my hairs. Just try to take it off, and you will soon
find out that I am more powerful than you are!"

"Wretched little monster!" said the King; "do you dare
to call yourself the Princess's lover, and to lay claim to
such a treasure? Do you know that you are a dwarf--that
you are so ugly that one cannot bear to look at you--and
that I should have killed you myself long before this if
you had been worthy of such a glorious death?"

The Yellow Dwarf, deeply enraged at these words, set
spurs to his cat, which yelled horribly, and leaped hither
and thither--terrifying everybody except the brave King,
who pursued the Dwarf closely, till he, drawing a great
knife with which he was armed, challenged the King to
meet him in single combat, and rushed down into the
courtyard of the palace with a terrible clatter. The King,
quite provoked, followed him hastily, but they had hardly
taken their places facing one another, and the whole
Court had only just had time to rush out upon the
balconies to watch what was going on, when suddenly the
sun became as red as blood, and it was so dark that they
could scarcely see at all. The thunder crashed, and the
lightning seemed as if it must burn up everything; the two
basilisks appeared, one on each side of the bad Dwarf, like
giants, mountains high, and fire flew from their mouths
and ears, until they looked like flaming furnaces. None
of these things could terrify the noble young King, and
the boldness of his looks and actions reassured those who
were looking on, and perhaps even embarrassed the Yellow
Dwarf himself; but even _his_ courage gave way when he
saw what was happening to his beloved Princess. For the
Fairy of the Desert, looking more terrible than before,
mounted upon a winged griffin, and with long snakes
coiled round her neck, had given her such a blow with the
lance she carried that Bellissima fell into the Queen's
arms bleeding and senseless. Her fond mother, feeling as
much hurt by the blow as the Princess herself, uttered
such piercing cries and lamentations that the King, hearing
them, entirely lost his courage and presence of mind.
Giving up the combat, he flew toward the Princess, to
rescue or to die with her; but the Yellow Dwarf was too
quick for him. Leaping with his Spanish cat upon the
balcony, he snatched Bellissima from the Queen's arms,
and before any of the ladies of the Court could stop him
he had sprung upon the roof of the palace and disappeared
with his prize.

The King, motionless with horror, looked on despairingly
at this dreadful occurrence, which he was quite
powerless to prevent, and to make matters worse his
sight failed him, everything became dark, and he felt himself
carried along through the air by a strong hand.

This new misfortune was the work of the wicked Fairy
of the Desert, who had come with the Yellow Dwarf to
help him carry off the Princess, and had fallen in love
with the handsome young King of the Gold Mines directly
she saw him. She thought that if she carried him off to
some frightful cavern and chained him to a rock, then the
fear of death would make him forget Bellissima and become
her slave. So, as soon as they reached the place, she
gave him back his sight, but without releasing him from
his chains, and by her magic power she appeared before
him as a young and beautiful fairy, and pretended to have
come there quite by chance.

"What do I see?" she cried. "Is it _you_, dear Prince?
What misfortune has brought you to this dismal place?"

The King, who was quite deceived by her altered
appearance, replied:

"Alas! beautiful Fairy, the fairy who brought me here
first took away my sight, but by her voice I recognized
her as the Fairy of the Desert, though what she should
have carried me off for I cannot tell you."

"Ah!" cried the pretended Fairy, "if you have fallen
into _her_ hands, you won't get away until you have married
her. She has carried off more than one Prince like this,
and she will certainly have anything she takes a fancy to."
While she was thus pretending to be sorry for the King,
he suddenly noticed her feet, which were like those of a
griffin, and knew in a moment that this must be the Fairy
of the Desert, for her feet were the one thing she could
not change, however pretty she might make her face.

Without seeming to have noticed anything, he said, in
a confidential way:

"Not that I have any dislike to the Fairy of the Desert,
but I really cannot endure the way in which she protects
the Yellow Dwarf and keeps me chained here like a
criminal. It is true that I love a charming princess, but
if the Fairy should set me free my gratitude would oblige
me to love her only."

"Do you really mean what you say, Prince?" said the
Fairy, quite deceived.

"Surely," replied the Prince; "how could I deceive you?
You see it is so much more flattering to my vanity to be
loved by a fairy than by a simple princess. But, even if
I am dying of love for her, I shall pretend to hate her until
I am set free."

The Fairy of the Desert, quite taken in by these words,
resolved at once to transport the Prince to a pleasanter
place. So, making him mount her chariot, to which she
had harnessed swans instead of the bats which generally
drew it, away she flew with him. But imagine the distress
of the Prince when, from the giddy height at which they
were rushing through the air, he saw his beloved Princess
in a castle built of polished steel, the walls of which
reflected the sun's rays so hotly that no one could approach
it without being burnt to a cinder! Bellissima was sitting
in a little thicket by a brook, leaning her head upon her
hand and weeping bitterly, but just as they passed she
looked up and saw the King and the Fairy of the Desert.
Now, the Fairy was so clever that she could not only seem
beautiful to the King, but even the poor Princess thought
her the most lovely being she had ever seen.

"What!" she cried; "was I not unhappy enough in this
lonely castle to which that frightful Yellow Dwarf
brought me? Must I also be made to know that the King
of the Gold Mines ceased to love me as soon as he lost
sight of me? But who can my rival be, whose fatal beauty
is greater than mine?"

While she was saying this, the King, who really loved
her as much as ever, was feeling terribly sad at being so
rapidly torn away from his beloved Princess, but he knew
too well how powerful the Fairy was to have any hope of
escaping from her except by great patience and cunning.

The Fairy of the Desert had also seen Bellissima, and
she tried to read in the King's eyes the effect that this
unexpected sight had had upon him.

"No one can tell you what you wish to know better than
I can," said he. "This chance meeting with an unhappy
princess for whom I once had a passing fancy, before I
was lucky enough to meet you, has affected me a little, I
admit, but you are so much more to me than she is that
I would rather die than leave you."

"Ah, Prince," she said, "can I believe that you really
love me so much?"

"Time will show, madam," replied the King; "but if you
wish to convince me that you have some regard for me, do
not, I beg of you, refuse to aid Bellissima."

"Do you know what you are asking?" said the Fairy of
the Desert, frowning, and looking at him suspiciously.
"Do you want me to employ my art against the Yellow
Dwarf, who is my best friend, and take away from him a
proud princess whom I can but look upon as my rival?"

The King sighed, but made no answer--indeed, what
was there to be said to such a clear-sighted person? At
last they reached a vast meadow, gay with all sorts of
flowers; a deep river surrounded it, and many little brooks
murmured softly under the shady trees, where it was
always cool and fresh. A little way off stood a splendid
palace, the walls of which were of transparent emeralds.
As soon as the swans which drew the Fairy's chariot had
alighted under a porch, which was paved with diamonds
and had arches of rubies, they were greeted on all sides by
thousands of beautiful beings, who came to meet them
joyfully, singing these words:

  "When Love within a heart would reign,
       Useless to strive against him 'tis.
  The proud but feel a sharper pain,
       And make a greater triumph his."

The Fairy of the Desert was delighted to hear them
sing of her triumphs; she led the King into the most
splendid room that can be imagined, and left him alone
for a little while, just that he might not feel that he was
a prisoner; but he felt sure that she had not really gone
quite away, but was watching him from some hiding-place.
So walking up to a great mirror, he said to it,
"Trusty counsellor, let me see what I can do to make
myself agreeable to the charming Fairy of the Desert; for I
can think of nothing but how to please her."

And he at once set to work to curl his hair, and, seeing
upon a table a grander coat than his own, he put it on
carefully. The Fairy came back so delighted that she
could not conceal her joy.

"I am quite aware of the trouble you have taken to
please me," said she, "and I must tell you that you have
succeeded perfectly already. You see it is not difficult to
do if you really care for me."

The King, who had his own reasons for wishing to keep
the old Fairy in a good humor, did not spare pretty
speeches, and after a time he was allowed to walk by
himself upon the sea-shore. The Fairy of the Desert had
by her enchantments raised such a terrible storm that the
boldest pilot would not venture out in it, so she was not
afraid of her prisoner's being able to escape; and he found
it some relief to think sadly over his terrible situation
without being interrupted by his cruel captor.

Presently, after walking wildly up and down, he wrote
these verses upon the sand with his stick:

"At last may I upon this shore
  Lighten my sorrow with soft tears.
Alas! alas! I see no more
  My Love, who yet my sadness cheers.

"And thou, O raging, stormy Sea,
  Stirred by wild winds, from depth to height,
Thou hold'st my loved one far from me,
  And I am captive to thy might.

"My heart is still more wild than thine,
  For Fate is cruel unto me.
Why must I thus in exile pine?
  Why is my Princess snatched from me?

"O! lovely Nymphs, from ocean caves,
  Who know how sweet true love may be,
Come up and calm the furious waves
  And set a desperate lover free!"

While he was still writing he heard a voice which
attracted his attention in spite of himself. Seeing that the
waves were rolling in higher than ever, he looked all
round, and presently saw a lovely lady floating gently
toward him upon the crest of a huge billow, her long hair
spread all about her; in one hand she held a mirror, and in
the other a comb, and instead of feet she had a beautiful
tail like a fish, with which she swam.

The King was struck dumb with astonishment at this
unexpected sight; but as soon as she came within speaking
distance, she said to him, "I know how sad you are at
losing your Princess and being kept a prisoner by the Fairy
of the Desert; if you like I will help you to escape from
this fatal place, where you may otherwise have to drag on
a weary existence for thirty years or more."

The King of the Gold Mines hardly knew what answer
to make to this proposal. Not because he did not wish
very much to escape, but he was afraid that this might
be only another device by which the Fairy of the Desert
was trying to deceive him. As he hesitated the Mermaid,
who guessed his thoughts, said to him:

"You may trust me: I am not trying to entrap you. I
am so angry with the Yellow Dwarf and the Fairy of the
Desert that I am not likely to wish to help them,
especially since I constantly see your poor Princess, whose
beauty and goodness make me pity her so much; and I
tell you that if you will have confidence in me I will help
you to escape."

"I trust you absolutely," cried the King, "and I will do
whatever you tell me; but if you have seen my Princess I
beg of you to tell me how she is and what is happening to

"We must not waste time in talking," said she. "Come
with me and I will carry you to the Castle of Steel, and
we will leave upon this shore a figure so like you that even
the Fairy herself will be deceived by it."

So saying, she quickly collected a bundle of sea-weed,
and, blowing it three times, she said:

"My friendly sea-weeds, I order you to stay here
stretched upon the sand until the Fairy of the Desert
comes to take you away." And at once the sea-weeds became
like the King, who stood looking at them in great
astonishment, for they were even dressed in a coat like
his, but they lay there pale and still as the King himself
might have lain if one of the great waves had overtaken
him and thrown him senseless upon the shore. And then
the Mermaid caught up the King, and away they swam
joyfully together.

"Now," said she, "I have time to tell you about the
Princess. In spite of the blow which the Fairy of the
Desert gave her, the Yellow Dwarf compelled her to
mount behind him upon his terrible Spanish cat; but she
soon fainted away with pain and terror, and did not recover
till they were within the walls of his frightful Castle
of Steel. Here she was received by the prettiest girls it
was possible to find, who had been carried there by the
Yellow Dwarf, who hastened to wait upon her and showed
her every possible attention. She was laid upon a couch
covered with cloth of gold, embroidered with pearls as big
as nuts."

"Ah!" interrupted the King of the Gold Mines, "if
Bellissima forgets me, and consents to marry him, I shall
break my heart."

"You need not be afraid of that," answered the
Mermaid, "the Princess thinks of no one but you, and the
frightful Dwarf cannot persuade her to look at him."

"Pray go on with your story," said the King.

"What more is there to tell you?" replied the Mermaid.
"Bellissima was sitting in the wood when you passed, and
saw you with the Fairy of the Desert, who was so cleverly
disguised that the Princess took her to be prettier than
herself; you may imagine her despair, for she thought that
you had fallen in love with her."

"She believes that I love her!" cried the King. "What
a fatal mistake! What is to be done to undeceive her?"

"You know best," answered the Mermaid, smiling
kindly at him. "When people are as much in love with
one another as you two are, they don't need advice from
anyone else."

As she spoke they reached the Castle of Steel, the side
next the sea being the only one which the Yellow Dwarf
had left unprotected by the dreadful burning walls.

"I know quite well," said the Mermaid, "that the
Princess is sitting by the brook-side, just where you saw her
as you passed, but as you will have many enemies to fight
with before you can reach her, take this sword; armed with
it you may dare any danger, and overcome the greatest
difficulties, only beware of one thing--that is, never to let
it fall from your hand. Farewell; now I will wait by that
rock, and if you need my help in carrying off your beloved
Princess I will not fail you, for the Queen, her mother, is
my best friend, and it was for her sake that I went to
rescue you."

So saying, she gave to the King a sword made from a
single diamond, which was more brilliant than the sun.
He could not find words to express his gratitude, but he
begged her to believe that he fully appreciated the
importance of her gift, and would never forget her help and

We must now go back to the Fairy of the Desert. When
she found that the King did not return, she hastened out
to look for him, and reached the shore, with a hundred of
the ladies of her train, loaded with splendid presents for
him. Some carried baskets full of diamonds, others
golden cups of wonderful workmanship, and amber, coral,
and pearls, others, again, balanced upon their heads bales
of the richest and most beautiful stuffs, while the rest
brought fruit and flowers, and even birds. But what was
the horror of the Fairy, who followed this gay troop, when
she saw, stretched upon the sands, the image of the King
which the Mermaid had made with the sea-weeds. Struck
with astonishment and sorrow, she uttered a terrible cry,
and threw herself down beside the pretended King, weeping,
and howling, and calling upon her eleven sisters, who
were also fairies, and who came to her assistance. But
they were all taken in by the image of the King, for,
clever as they were, the Mermaid was still cleverer, and
all they could do was to help the Fairy of the Desert to
make a wonderful monument over what they thought was
the grave of the King of the Gold Mines. But while they
were collecting jasper and porphyry, agate and marble,
gold and bronze, statues and devices, to immortalize the
King's memory, he was thanking the good Mermaid and
begging her still to help him, which she graciously promised
to do as she disappeared; and then he set out for the
Castle of Steel. He walked fast, looking anxiously round
him, and longing once more to see his darling Bellissima,
but he had not gone far before he was surrounded by four
terrible sphinxes who would very soon have torn him to
pieces with their sharp talons if it had not been for the
Mermaid's diamond sword. For, no sooner had he flashed
it before their eyes than down they fell at his feet quite
helpless, and he killed them with one blow. But he had
hardly turned to continue his search when he met six
dragons covered with scales that were harder than iron.
Frightful as this encounter was the King's courage was
unshaken, and by the aid of his wonderful sword he cut
them in pieces one after the other. Now he hoped his
difficulties were over, but at the next turning he was
met by one which he did not know how to overcome.
Four-and-twenty pretty and graceful nymphs advanced
toward him, holding garlands of flowers, with which they
barred the way.

"Where are you going, Prince?" they said; "it is our
duty to guard this place, and if we let you pass great
misfortunes will happen to you and to us. We beg you not
to insist upon going on. Do you want to kill four-and-twenty
girls who have never displeased you in any way?"

The King did not know what to do or to say. It went
against all his ideas as a knight to do anything a lady
begged him not to do; but, as he hesitated, a voice in his
ear said:

"Strike! strike! and do not spare, or your Princess is lost
for ever!"

So, without reply to the nymphs, he rushed forward
instantly, breaking their garlands, and scattering them in
all directions; and then went on without further hindrance
to the little wood where he had seen Bellissima. She was
seated by the brook looking pale and weary when he
reached her, and he would have thrown himself down at
her feet, but she drew herself away from him with as
much indignation as if he had been the Yellow Dwarf.

"Ah! Princess," he cried, "do not be angry with me. Let
me explain everything. I am not faithless or to blame for
what has happened. I am a miserable wretch who has
displeased you without being able to help himself."

"Ah!" cried Bellissima, "did I not see you flying through
the air with the loveliest being imaginable? Was that
against your will?"

"Indeed it was, Princess," he answered; "the wicked
Fairy of the Desert, not content with chaining me to a
rock, carried me off in her chariot to the other end of the
earth, where I should even now be a captive but for the
unexpected help of a friendly mermaid, who brought me
here to rescue you, my Princess, from the unworthy hands
that hold you. Do not refuse the aid of your most faithful
lover." So saying, he threw himself at her feet and
held her by her robe. But, alas! in so doing he let fall the
magic sword, and the Yellow Dwarf, who was crouching
behind a lettuce, no sooner saw it than he sprang out and
seized it, well knowing its wonderful power.

The Princess gave a cry of terror on seeing the Dwarf,
but this only irritated the little monster; muttering a few
magical words he summoned two giants, who bound the
King with great chains of iron.

"Now," said the Dwarf, "I am master of my rival's
fate, but I will give him his life and permission to depart
unharmed if you, Princess, will consent to marry me."

"Let me die a thousand times rather," cried the
unhappy King.

"Alas!" cried the Princess, "must you die? Could
anything be more terrible?"

"That you should marry that little wretch would be far
more terrible," answered the King.

"At least," continued she, "let us die together."

"Let me have the satisfaction of dying for you, my
Princess," said he.

"Oh, no, no!" she cried, turning to the Dwarf; "rather
than that I will do as you wish."

"Cruel Princess!" said the King, "would you make my
life horrible to me by marrying another before my eyes?"

"Not so," replied the Yellow Dwarf; "you are a rival
of whom I am too much afraid; you shall not see our
marriage." So saying, in spite of Bellissima's tears and
cries, he stabbed the King to the heart with the diamond

The poor Princess, seeing her lover lying dead at her
feet, could no longer live without him; she sank down by
him and died of a broken heart.

So ended these unfortunate lovers, whom not even the
Mermaid could help, because all the magic power had
been lost with the diamond sword.

As to the wicked Dwarf, he preferred to see the
Princess dead rather than married to the King of the Gold
Mines; and the Fairy of the Desert, when she heard of the
King's adventures, pulled down the grand monument
which she had built, and was so angry at the trick that
had been played her that she hated him as much as she
had loved him before.

The kind Mermaid, grieved at the sad fate of the lovers,
caused them to be changed into two tall palm trees, which
stand always side by side, whispering together of their
faithful love and caressing one another with their
interlacing branches.[1]

[1] Madame d'Aulnoy.


Once upon a time there lived in a certain village a
little country girl, the prettiest creature was ever seen.
Her mother was excessively fond of her; and her grandmother
doted on her still more. This good woman had
made for her a little red riding-hood; which became the girl
so extremely well that everybody called her Little Red

One day her mother, having made some custards, said
to her:

"Go, my dear, and see how thy grandmamma does, for
I hear she has been very ill; carry her a custard, and this
little pot of butter."

Little Red Riding-Hood set out immediately to go to
her grandmother, who lived in another village.

As she was going through the wood, she met with Gaffer
Wolf, who had a very great mind to eat her up, but he
dared not, because of some faggot-makers hard by in the
forest. He asked her whither she was going. The poor
child, who did not know that it was dangerous to stay and
hear a wolf talk, said to him:

"I am going to see my grandmamma and carry her a
custard and a little pot of butter from my mamma."

"Does she live far off?" said the Wolf.

"Oh! ay," answered Little Red Riding-Hood; "it is
beyond that mill you see there, at the first house in the

"Well," said the Wolf, "and I'll go and see her too. I'll
go this way and you go that, and we shall see who will be
there soonest."

The Wolf began to run as fast as he could, taking the
nearest way, and the little girl went by that farthest about,
diverting herself in gathering nuts, running after butterflies,
and making nosegays of such little flowers as she met
with. The Wolf was not long before he got to the old
woman's house. He knocked at the door--tap, tap.

"Who's there?"

"Your grandchild, Little Red Riding-Hood," replied
the Wolf, counterfeiting her voice; "who has brought you
a custard and a little pot of butter sent you by mamma."

The good grandmother, who was in bed, because she
was somewhat ill, cried out:

"Pull the bobbin, and the latch will go up."

The Wolf pulled the bobbin, and the door opened, and
then presently he fell upon the good woman and ate her
up in a moment, for it was above three days that he had
not touched a bit. He then shut the door and went into
the grandmother's bed, expecting Little Red Riding-Hood,
who came some time afterward and knocked at the
door--tap, tap.

"Who's there?"

Little Red Riding-Hood, hearing the big voice of the
Wolf, was at first afraid; but believing her grandmother
had got a cold and was hoarse, answered:

" 'Tis your grandchild, Little Red Riding-Hood, who
has brought you a custard and a little pot of butter
mamma sends you."

The Wolf cried out to her, softening his voice as much
as he could:

"Pull the bobbin, and the latch will go up."

Little Red Riding-Hood pulled the bobbin, and the
door opened.

The Wolf, seeing her come in, said to her, hiding himself
under the bed-clothes:

"Put the custard and the little pot of butter upon the
stool, and come and lie down with me."

Little Red Riding-Hood undressed herself and went
into bed, where, being greatly amazed to see how her
grandmother looked in her night-clothes, she said to her:

"Grandmamma, what great arms you have got!"

"That is the better to hug thee, my dear."

"Grandmamma, what great legs you have got!"

"That is to run the better, my child."

"Grandmamma, what great ears you have got!"

"That is to hear the better, my child."

"Grandmamma, what great eyes you have got!"

"It is to see the better, my child."

"Grandmamma, what great teeth you have got!"

"That is to eat thee up."

And, saying these words, this wicked wolf fell upon
Little Red Riding-Hood, and ate her all up.


There were formerly a king and a queen, who were so
sorry that they had no children; so sorry that it cannot
be expressed. They went to all the waters in the world;
vows, pilgrimages, all ways were tried, and all to no

At last, however, the Queen had a daughter. There was
a very fine christening; and the Princess had for her
god-mothers all the fairies they could find in the whole
kingdom (they found seven), that every one of them might
give her a gift, as was the custom of fairies in those days.
By this means the Princess had all the perfections imaginable.

After the ceremonies of the christening were over, all
the company returned to the King's palace, where was
prepared a great feast for the fairies. There was placed
before every one of them a magnificent cover with a case
of massive gold, wherein were a spoon, knife, and fork, all
of pure gold set with diamonds and rubies. But as they
were all sitting down at table they saw come into the hall
a very old fairy, whom they had not invited, because it
was above fifty years since she had been out of a certain
tower, and she was believed to be either dead or enchanted.

The King ordered her a cover, but could not furnish her
with a case of gold as the others, because they had only
seven made for the seven fairies. The old Fairy fancied
she was slighted, and muttered some threats between her
teeth. One of the young fairies who sat by her overheard
how she grumbled; and, judging that she might give the
little Princess some unlucky gift, went, as soon as they
rose from table, and hid herself behind the hangings, that
she might speak last, and repair, as much as she could, the
evil which the old Fairy might intend.

In the meanwhile all the fairies began to give their gifts
to the Princess. The youngest gave her for gift that she
should be the most beautiful person in the world; the
next, that she should have the wit of an angel; the third,
that she should have a wonderful grace in everything she
did; the fourth, that she should dance perfectly well; the
fifth, that she should sing like a nightingale; and the
sixth, that she should play all kinds of music to the
utmost perfection.

The old Fairy's turn coming next, with a head shaking
more with spite than age, she said that the Princess
should have her hand pierced with a spindle and die of
the wound. This terrible gift made the whole company
tremble, and everybody fell a-crying.

At this very instant the young Fairy came out from
behind the hangings, and spake these words aloud:

"Assure yourselves, O King and Queen, that your
daughter shall not die of this disaster. It is true, I have
no power to undo entirely what my elder has done. The
Princess shall indeed pierce her hand with a spindle; but,
instead of dying, she shall only fall into a profound sleep,
which shall last a hundred years, at the expiration of
which a king's son shall come and awake her."

The King, to avoid the misfortune foretold by the old
Fairy, caused immediately proclamation to be made,
whereby everybody was forbidden, on pain of death, to
spin with a distaff and spindle, or to have so much as any
spindle in their houses. About fifteen or sixteen years
after, the King and Queen being gone to one of their houses
of pleasure, the young Princess happened one day to
divert herself in running up and down the palace; when
going up from one apartment to another, she came into
a little room on the top of the tower, where a good old
woman, alone, was spinning with her spindle. This good
woman had never heard of the King's proclamation
against spindles.

"What are you doing there, goody?" said the Princess.

"I am spinning, my pretty child," said the old woman,
who did not know who she was.

"Ha!" said the Princess, "this is very pretty; how do
you do it? Give it to me, that I may see if I can do so."

She had no sooner taken it into her hand than, whether
being very hasty at it, somewhat unhandy, or that the
decree of the Fairy had so ordained it, it ran into her
hand, and she fell down in a swoon.

The good old woman, not knowing very well what to do
in this affair, cried out for help. People came in from
every quarter in great numbers; they threw water upon
the Princess's face, unlaced her, struck her on the palms
of her hands, and rubbed her temples with Hungary-water;
but nothing would bring her to herself.

And now the King, who came up at the noise, bethought
himself of the prediction of the fairies, and, judging very
well that this must necessarily come to pass, since the
fairies had said it, caused the Princess to be carried into
the finest apartment in his palace, and to be laid upon a
bed all embroidered with gold and silver.

One would have taken her for a little angel, she was so
very beautiful; for her swooning away had not diminished
one bit of her complexion; her cheeks were carnation, and
her lips were coral; indeed, her eyes were shut, but she
was heard to breathe softly, which satisfied those about
her that she was not dead. The King commanded that
they should not disturb her, but let her sleep quietly till
her hour of awaking was come.

The good Fairy who had saved her life by condemning
her to sleep a hundred years was in the kingdom of
Matakin, twelve thousand leagues off, when this accident
befell the Princess; but she was instantly informed of it
by a little dwarf, who had boots of seven leagues, that is,
boots with which he could tread over seven leagues of
ground in one stride. The Fairy came away immediately,
and she arrived, about an hour after, in a fiery chariot
drawn by dragons.

The King handed her out of the chariot, and she
approved everything he had done, but as she had very great
foresight, she thought when the Princess should awake
she might not know what to do with herself, being all
alone in this old palace; and this was what she did: she
touched with her wand everything in the palace (except
the King and Queen)--governesses, maids of honor, ladies
of the bedchamber, gentlemen, officers, stewards, cooks,
undercooks, scullions, guards, with their beefeaters,
pages, footmen; she likewise touched all the horses which
were in the stables, pads as well as others, the great dogs
in the outward court and pretty little Mopsey too, the
Princess's little spaniel, which lay by her on the bed.

Immediately upon her touching them they all fell
asleep, that they might not awake before their mistress
and that they might be ready to wait upon her when she
wanted them. The very spits at the fire, as full as they
could hold of partridges and pheasants, did fall asleep
also. All this was done in a moment. Fairies are not long
in doing their business.

And now the King and the Queen, having kissed their
dear child without waking her, went out of the palace and
put forth a proclamation that nobody should dare to
come near it.

This, however, was not necessary, for in a quarter of an
hour's time there grew up all round about the park such
a vast number of trees, great and small, bushes and
brambles, twining one within another, that neither man
nor beast could pass through; so that nothing could be
seen but the very top of the towers of the palace; and
that, too, not unless it was a good way off. Nobody;
doubted but the Fairy gave herein a very extraordinary
sample of her art, that the Princess, while she continued
sleeping, might have nothing to fear from any curious

When a hundred years were gone and passed the son of
the King then reigning, and who was of another family
from that of the sleeping Princess, being gone a-hunting
on that side of the country, asked:

What those towers were which he saw in the middle of
a great thick wood?

Everyone answered according as they had heard. Some

That it was a ruinous old castle, haunted by spirits.

Others, That all the sorcerers and witches of the
country kept there their sabbath or night's meeting.

The common opinion was: That an ogre lived there, and
that he carried thither all the little children he could
catch, that he might eat them up at his leisure, without
anybody being able to follow him, as having himself only
the power to pass through the wood.

The Prince was at a stand, not knowing what to
believe, when a very good countryman spake to him thus:

"May it please your royal highness, it is now about
fifty years since I heard from my father, who heard my
grandfather say, that there was then in this castle a
princess, the most beautiful was ever seen; that she must
sleep there a hundred years, and should be waked by a
king's son, for whom she was reserved."

The young Prince was all on fire at these words,
believing, without weighing the matter, that he could put
an end to this rare adventure; and, pushed on by love and
honor, resolved that moment to look into it.

Scarce had he advanced toward the wood when all the
great trees, the bushes, and brambles gave way of themselves
to let him pass through; he walked up to the castle
which he saw at the end of a large avenue which he went
into; and what a little surprised him was that he saw
none of his people could follow him, because the trees
closed again as soon as he had passed through them.
However, he did not cease from continuing his way; a
young and amorous prince is always valiant.

He came into a spacious outward court, where everything
he saw might have frozen the most fearless person
with horror. There reigned all over a most frightful
silence; the image of death everywhere showed itself, and
there was nothing to be seen but stretched-out bodies of
men and animals, all seeming to be dead. He, however,
very well knew, by the ruby faces and pimpled noses of
the beefeaters, that they were only asleep; and their
goblets, wherein still remained some drops of wine, showed
plainly that they fell asleep in their cups.

He then crossed a court paved with marble, went up
the stairs and came into the guard chamber, where guards
were standing in their ranks, with their muskets upon
their shoulders, and snoring as loud as they could. After
that he went through several rooms full of gentlemen and
ladies, all asleep, some standing, others sitting. At last
he came into a chamber all gilded with gold, where he
saw upon a bed, the curtains of which were all open, the
finest sight was ever beheld--a princess, who appeared
to be about fifteen or sixteen years of age, and whose
bright and, in a manner, resplendent beauty, had somewhat
in it divine. He approached with trembling and
admiration, and fell down before her upon his knees.

And now, as the enchantment was at an end, the
Princess awaked, and looking on him with eyes more tender
than the first view might seem to admit of:

"Is it you, my Prince?" said she to him. "You have
waited a long while."

The Prince, charmed with these words, and much more
with the manner in which they were spoken, knew not
how to show his joy and gratitude; he assured her that he
loved her better than he did himself; their discourse was
not well connected, they did weep more than talk--little
eloquence, a great deal of love. He was more at a loss
than she, and we need not wonder at it; she had time to
think on what to say to him; for it is very probable
(though history mentions nothing of it) that the good
Fairy, during so long a sleep, had given her very agreeable
dreams. In short, they talked four hours together, and
yet they said not half what they had to say.

In the meanwhile all the palace awaked; everyone
thought upon their particular business, and as all of them
were not in love they were ready to die for hunger. The
chief lady of honor, being as sharp set as other folks,
grew very impatient, and told the Princess aloud that
supper was served up. The Prince helped the Princess to
rise; she was entirely dressed, and very magnificently, but
his royal highness took care not to tell her that she was
dressed like his great-grandmother, and had a point band
peeping over a high collar; she looked not a bit less charming
and beautiful for all that.

They went into the great hall of looking-glasses, where
they supped, and were served by the Princess's officers,
the violins and hautboys played old tunes, but very
excellent, though it was now above a hundred years since
they had played; and after supper, without losing any
time, the lord almoner married them in the chapel of the
castle, and the chief lady of honor drew the curtains.
They had but very little sleep--the Princess had no
occasion; and the Prince left her next morning to return
to the city, where his father must needs have been in pain
for him. The Prince told him:

That he lost his way in the forest as he was hunting,
and that he had lain in the cottage of a charcoal-burner,
who gave him cheese and brown bread.

The King, his father, who was a good man, believed
him; but his mother could not be persuaded it was true;
and seeing that he went almost every day a-hunting, and
that he always had some excuse ready for so doing, though
he had lain out three or four nights together, she began
to suspect that he was married, for he lived with the
Princess above two whole years, and had by her two
children, the eldest of which, who was a daughter, was named
Morning, and the youngest, who was a son, they called
Day, because he was a great deal handsomer and more
beautiful than his sister.

The Queen spoke several times to her son, to inform
herself after what manner he did pass his time, and that
in this he ought in duty to satisfy her. But he never
dared to trust her with his secret; he feared her, though
he loved her, for she was of the race of the Ogres, and the
King would never have married her had it not been for
her vast riches; it was even whispered about the Court
that she had Ogreish inclinations, and that, whenever she
saw little children passing by, she had all the difficulty in
the world to avoid falling upon them. And so the Prince
would never tell her one word.

But when the King was dead, which happened about
two years afterward, and he saw himself lord and master,
he openly declared his marriage; and he went in great
ceremony to conduct his Queen to the palace. They made
a magnificent entry into the capital city, she riding
between her two children.

Soon after the King went to make war with the Emperor
Contalabutte, his neighbor. He left the government
of the kingdom to the Queen his mother, and
earnestly recommended to her care his wife and children.
He was obliged to continue his expedition all the summer,
and as soon as he departed the Queen-mother sent her
daughter-in-law to a country house among the woods,
that she might with the more ease gratify her horrible

Some few days afterward she went thither herself, and
said to her clerk of the kitchen:

"I have a mind to eat little Morning for my dinner to-morrow."

"Ah! madam," cried the clerk of the kitchen.

"I will have it so," replied the Queen (and this she
spoke in the tone of an Ogress who had a strong desire to
eat fresh meat), "and will eat her with a sauce Robert."

The poor man, knowing very well that he must not play
tricks with Ogresses, took his great knife and went up into
little Morning's chamber. She was then four years old,
and came up to him jumping and laughing, to take him
about the neck, and ask him for some sugar-candy. Upon
which he began to weep, the great knife fell out of his
hand, and he went into the back yard, and killed a little
lamb, and dressed it with such good sauce that his
mistress assured him that she had never eaten anything so
good in her life. He had at the same time taken up little
Morning, and carried her to his wife, to conceal her in the
lodging he had at the bottom of the courtyard.

About eight days afterward the wicked Queen said to
the clerk of the kitchen, "I will sup on little Day."

He answered not a word, being resolved to cheat her as
he had done before. He went to find out little Day, and
saw him with a little foil in his hand, with which he was
fencing with a great monkey, the child being then only
three years of age. He took him up in his arms and carried
him to his wife, that she might conceal him in her chamber
along with his sister, and in the room of little Day cooked
up a young kid, very tender, which the Ogress found to be
wonderfully good.

This was hitherto all mighty well; but one evening this
wicked Queen said to her clerk of the kitchen:

"I will eat the Queen with the same sauce I had with
her children."

It was now that the poor clerk of the kitchen despaired
of being able to deceive her. The young Queen was turned
of twenty, not reckoning the hundred years she had been
asleep; and how to find in the yard a beast so firm was
what puzzled him. He took then a resolution, that he
might save his own life, to cut the Queen's throat; and
going up into her chamber, with intent to do it at once, he
put himself into as great fury as he could possibly, and
came into the young Queen's room with his dagger in his
hand. He would not, however, surprise her, but told her,
with a great deal of respect, the orders he had received
from the Queen-mother.

"Do it; do it" (said she, stretching out her neck).
"Execute your orders, and then I shall go and see my
children, my poor children, whom I so much and so
tenderly loved."

For she thought them dead ever since they had been
taken away without her knowledge.

"No, no, madam" (cried the poor clerk of the kitchen,
all in tears); "you shall not die, and yet you shall see your
children again; but then you must go home with me to
my lodgings, where I have concealed them, and I shall
deceive the Queen once more, by giving her in your stead
a young hind."

Upon this he forthwith conducted her to his chamber,
where, leaving her to embrace her children, and cry along
with them, he went and dressed a young hind, which the
Queen had for her supper, and devoured it with the same
appetite as if it had been the young Queen. Exceedingly
was she delighted with her cruelty, and she had invented
a story to tell the King, at his return, how the mad
wolves had eaten up the Queen his wife and her two

One evening, as she was, according to her custom,
rambling round about the courts and yards of the palace
to see if she could smell any fresh meat, she heard, in a
ground room, little Day crying, for his mamma was going
to whip him, because he had been naughty; and she
heard, at the same time, little Morning begging pardon
for her brother.

The Ogress presently knew the voice of the Queen and
her children, and being quite mad that she had been thus
deceived, she commanded next morning, by break of day
(with a most horrible voice, which made everybody tremble),
that they should bring into the middle of the great
court a large tub, which she caused to be filled with toads,
vipers, snakes, and all sorts of serpents, in order to have
thrown into it the Queen and her children, the clerk of the
kitchen, his wife and maid; all whom she had given orders
should be brought thither with their hands tied behind

They were brought out accordingly, and the executioners
were just going to throw them into the tub, when the
King (who was not so soon expected) entered the court on
horseback (for he came post) and asked, with the utmost
astonishment, what was the meaning of that horrible

No one dared to tell him, when the Ogress, all enraged
to see what had happened, threw herself head foremost
into the tub, and was instantly devoured by the ugly
creatures she had ordered to be thrown into it for others.
The King could not but be very sorry, for she was his
mother; but he soon comforted himself with his beautiful
wife and his pretty children.


Once there was a gentleman who married, for his
second wife, the proudest and most haughty woman that
was ever seen. She had, by a former husband, two
daughters of her own humor, who were, indeed, exactly
like her in all things. He had likewise, by another wife,
a young daughter, but of unparalleled goodness and
sweetness of temper, which she took from her mother, who was
the best creature in the world.

No sooner were the ceremonies of the wedding over but
the mother-in-law began to show herself in her true colors.
She could not bear the good qualities of this pretty girl,
and the less because they made her own daughters appear
the more odious. She employed her in the meanest
work of the house: she scoured the dishes, tables, etc.,
and scrubbed madam's chamber, and those of misses, her
daughters; she lay up in a sorry garret, upon a wretched
straw bed, while her sisters lay in fine rooms, with floors
all inlaid, upon beds of the very newest fashion, and
where they had looking-glasses so large that they might
see themselves at their full length from head to foot.

The poor girl bore all patiently, and dared not tell her
father, who would have rattled her off; for his wife
governed him entirely. When she had done her work, she
used to go into the chimney-corner, and sit down among
cinders and ashes, which made her commonly be called
Cinderwench; but the youngest, who was not so rude and
uncivil as the eldest, called her Cinderella. However,
Cinderella, notwithstanding her mean apparel, was a
hundred times handsomer than her sisters, though they
were always dressed very richly.

It happened that the King's son gave a ball, and invited
all persons of fashion to it. Our young misses were also
invited, for they cut a very grand figure among the quality.
They were mightily delighted at this invitation, and
wonderfully busy in choosing out such gowns, petticoats,
and head-clothes as might become them. This was a new
trouble to Cinderella; for it was she who ironed her
sisters' linen, and plaited their ruffles; they talked all day
long of nothing but how they should be dressed.

"For my part," said the eldest, "I will wear my red
velvet suit with French trimming."

"And I," said the youngest, "shall have my usual
petticoat; but then, to make amends for that, I will put on my
gold-flowered manteau, and my diamond stomacher,
which is far from being the most ordinary one in the

They sent for the best tire-woman they could get to
make up their head-dresses and adjust their double pinners,
and they had their red brushes and patches from
Mademoiselle de la Poche.

Cinderella was likewise called up to them to be
consulted in all these matters, for she had excellent notions,
and advised them always for the best, nay, and offered
her services to dress their heads, which they were very
willing she should do. As she was doing this, they said to

"Cinderella, would you not be glad to go to the ball?"

"Alas!" said she, "you only jeer me; it is not for such
as I am to go thither."

"Thou art in the right of it," replied they; "it would
make the people laugh to see a Cinderwench at a ball."

Anyone but Cinderella would have dressed their heads
awry, but she was very good, and dressed them perfectly
well They were almost two days without eating, so
much were they transported with joy. They broke above
a dozen laces in trying to be laced up close, that they
might have a fine slender shape, and they were continually
at their looking-glass. At last the happy day came; they
went to Court, and Cinderella followed them with her
eyes as long as she could, and when she had lost sight of
them, she fell a-crying.

Her godmother, who saw her all in tears, asked her
what was the matter.

"I wish I could--I wish I could--"; she was not able
to speak the rest, being interrupted by her tears and

This godmother of hers, who was a fairy, said to her,
"Thou wishest thou couldst go to the ball; is it not so?"

"Y--es," cried Cinderella, with a great sigh.

"Well," said her godmother, "be but a good girl, and
I will contrive that thou shalt go." Then she took her into
her chamber, and said to her, "Run into the garden, and
bring me a pumpkin."

Cinderella went immediately to gather the finest she
could get, and brought it to her godmother, not being able
to imagine how this pumpkin could make her go to the
ball. Her godmother scooped out all the inside of it,
having left nothing but the rind; which done, she struck it
with her wand, and the pumpkin was instantly turned
into a fine coach, gilded all over with gold.

She then went to look into her mouse-trap, where she
found six mice, all alive, and ordered Cinderella to lift
up a little the trapdoor, when, giving each mouse, as it
went out, a little tap with her wand, the mouse was that
moment turned into a fine horse, which altogether made
a very fine set of six horses of a beautiful mouse-colored
dapple-gray. Being at a loss for a coachman,

"I will go and see," says Cinderella, "if there is never
a rat in the rat-trap--we may make a coachman of him."

"Thou art in the right," replied her godmother; "go
and look."

Cinderella brought the trap to her, and in it there were
three huge rats. The fairy made choice of one of the
three which had the largest beard, and, having touched
him with her wand, he was turned into a fat, jolly
coachman, who had the smartest whiskers eyes ever beheld.
After that, she said to her:

"Go again into the garden, and you will find six lizards
behind the watering-pot, bring them to me."

She had no sooner done so but her godmother turned
them into six footmen, who skipped up immediately behind
the coach, with their liveries all bedaubed with gold
and silver, and clung as close behind each other as if they
had done nothing else their whole lives. The Fairy then
said to Cinderella:

"Well, you see here an equipage fit to go to the ball
with; are you not pleased with it?"

"Oh! yes," cried she; "but must I go thither as I am,
in these nasty rags?"

Her godmother only just touched her with her wand,
and, at the same instant, her clothes were turned into
cloth of gold and silver, all beset with jewels. This done,
she gave her a pair of glass slippers, the prettiest in the
whole world. Being thus decked out, she got up into her
coach; but her godmother, above all things, commanded
her not to stay till after midnight, telling her, at the same
time, that if she stayed one moment longer, the coach
would be a pumpkin again, her horses mice, her coachman
a rat, her footmen lizards, and her clothes become
just as they were before.

She promised her godmother she would not fail of
leaving the ball before midnight; and then away she drives,
scarce able to contain herself for joy. The King's son
who was told that a great princess, whom nobody knew,
was come, ran out to receive her; he gave her his hand as
she alighted out of the coach, and led her into the ball,
among all the company. There was immediately a profound
silence, they left off dancing, and the violins ceased
to play, so attentive was everyone to contemplate the
singular beauties of the unknown new-comer. Nothing
was then heard but a confused noise of:

"Ha! how handsome she is! Ha! how handsome she is!"

The King himself, old as he was, could not help watching
her, and telling the Queen softly that it was a long
time since he had seen so beautiful and lovely a creature.

All the ladies were busied in considering her clothes and
headdress, that they might have some made next day
after the same pattern, provided they could meet with
such fine material and as able hands to make them.

The King's son conducted her to the most honorable
seat, and afterward took her out to dance with him; she
danced so very gracefully that they all more and more
admired her. A fine collation was served up, whereof the
young prince ate not a morsel, so intently was he busied
in gazing on her.

She went and sat down by her sisters, showing them a
thousand civilities, giving them part of the oranges and
citrons which the Prince had presented her with, which
very much surprised them, for they did not know her.
While Cinderella was thus amusing her sisters, she heard
the clock strike eleven and three-quarters, whereupon she
immediately made a courtesy to the company and hasted
away as fast as she could.

When she got home she ran to seek out her godmother,
and, after having thanked her, she said she could not but
heartily wish she might go next day to the ball, because
the King's son had desired her.

As she was eagerly telling her godmother whatever had
passed at the ball, her two sisters knocked at the door,
which Cinderella ran and opened.

"How long you have stayed!" cried she, gaping, rubbing
her eyes and stretching herself as if she had been just
waked out of her sleep; she had not, however, any manner
of inclination to sleep since they went from home.

"If thou hadst been at the ball," said one of her sisters,
"thou wouldst not have been tired with it. There came
thither the finest princess, the most beautiful ever was
seen with mortal eyes; she showed us a thousand civilities,
and gave us oranges and citrons."

Cinderella seemed very indifferent in the matter;
indeed, she asked them the name of that princess; but they
told her they did not know it, and that the King's son was
very uneasy on her account and would give all the world
to know who she was. At this Cinderella, smiling,

"She must, then, be very beautiful indeed; how happy
you have been! Could not I see her? Ah! dear Miss
Charlotte, do lend me your yellow suit of clothes which
you wear every day."

"Ay, to be sure!" cried Miss Charlotte; "lend my
clothes to such a dirty Cinderwench as thou art! I
should be a fool."

Cinderella, indeed, expected well such answer, and was
very glad of the refusal; for she would have been sadly
put to it if her sister had lent her what she asked for

The next day the two sisters were at the ball, and so was
Cinderella, but dressed more magnificently than before.
The King's son was always by her, and never ceased his
compliments and kind speeches to her; to whom all this
was so far from being tiresome that she quite forgot what
her godmother had recommended to her; so that she, at
last, counted the clock striking twelve when she took it
to be no more than eleven; she then rose up and fled, as
nimble as a deer. The Prince followed, but could not
overtake her. She left behind one of her glass slippers,
which the Prince took up most carefully. She got home
but quite out of breath, and in her nasty old clothes,
having nothing left her of all her finery but one of the
little slippers, fellow to that she dropped. The guards at
the palace gate were asked:

If they had not seen a princess go out.

Who said: They had seen nobody go out but a young
girl, very meanly dressed, and who had more the air of a
poor country wench than a gentlewoman.

When the two sisters returned from the ball Cinderella
asked them: If they had been well diverted, and if the
fine lady had been there.

They told her: Yes, but that she hurried away
immediately when it struck twelve, and with so much haste
that she dropped one of her little glass slippers, the
prettiest in the world, which the King's son had taken
up; that he had done nothing but look at her all the time
at the ball, and that most certainly he was very much in
love with the beautiful person who owned the glass

What they said was very true; for a few days after the
King's son caused it to be proclaimed, by sound of trumpet,
that he would marry her whose foot the slipper would
just fit. They whom he employed began to try it upon
the princesses, then the duchesses and all the Court, but
in vain; it was brought to the two sisters, who did all they
possibly could to thrust their foot into the slipper, but
they could not effect it. Cinderella, who saw all this, and
knew her slipper, said to them, laughing:

"Let me see if it will not fit me."

Her sisters burst out a-laughing, and began to banter
her. The gentleman who was sent to try the slipper looked
earnestly at Cinderella, and, finding her very handsome,

It was but just that she should try, and that he had
orders to let everyone make trial.

He obliged Cinderella to sit down, and, putting the
slipper to her foot, he found it went on very easily, and
fitted her as if it had been made of wax. The astonishment
her two sisters were in was excessively great, but
still abundantly greater when Cinderella pulled out of her
pocket the other slipper, and put it on her foot. Thereupon,
in came her godmother, who, having touched with
her wand Cinderella's clothes, made them richer and
more magnificent than any of those she had before.

And now her two sisters found her to be that fine,
beautiful lady whom they had seen at the ball. They
threw themselves at her feet to beg pardon for all the
ill-treatment they had made her undergo. Cinderella took
them up, and, as she embraced them, cried:

That she forgave them with all her heart, and desired
them always to love her.

She was conducted to the young prince, dressed as she
was; he thought her more charming than ever, and, a few
days after, married her. Cinderella, who was no less good
than beautiful, gave her two sisters lodgings in the palace,
and that very same day matched them with two great
lords of the Court.[1]

[1] Charles Perrault.


There once lived a poor tailor, who had a son called
Aladdin, a careless, idle boy who would do nothing but
play ball all day long in the streets with little idle boys like
himself. This so grieved the father that he died; yet, in
spite of his mother's tears and prayers, Aladdin did not
mend his ways. One day, when he was playing in the
streets as usual, a stranger asked him his age, and if he
was not the son of Mustapha the tailor. "I am, sir,"
replied Aladdin; "but he died a long while ago." On this
the stranger, who was a famous African magician, fell on
his neck and kissed him, saying, "I am your uncle, and
knew you from your likeness to my brother. Go to your
mother and tell her I am coming." Aladdin ran home and
told his mother of his newly found uncle. "Indeed, child,"
she said, "your father had a brother, but I always thought
he was dead." However, she prepared supper, and bade
Aladdin seek his uncle, who came laden with wine and
fruit. He presently fell down and kissed the place where
Mustapha used to sit, bidding Aladdin's mother not to be
surprised at not having seen him before, as he had been
forty years out of the country. He then turned to Aladdin,
and asked him his trade, at which the boy hung his
head, while his mother burst into tears. On learning that
Aladdin was idle and would learn no trade, he offered to
take a shop for him and stock it with merchandise. Next
day he bought Aladdin a fine suit of clothes and took him
all over the city, showing him the sights, and brought him
home at nightfall to his mother, who was overjoyed to see
her son so fine.

The next day the magician led Aladdin into some
beautiful gardens a long way outside the city gates. They
sat down by a fountain and the magician pulled a cake
from his girdle, which he divided between them. They
then journeyed onward till they almost reached the
mountains. Aladdin was so tired that he begged to go
back, but the magician beguiled him with pleasant
stories, and led him on in spite of himself. At last they
came to two mountains divided by a narrow valley. "We
will go no farther," said the false uncle. "I will show you
something wonderful; only do you gather up sticks while
I kindle a fire." When it was lit the magician threw on
it a powder he had about him, at the same time saying
some magical words. The earth trembled a little and
opened in front of them, disclosing a square flat stone with
a brass ring in the middle to raise it by. Aladdin tried to
run away, but the magician caught him and gave him a
blow that knocked him down. "What have I done, uncle?"
he said piteously; whereupon the magician said more
kindly: "Fear nothing, but obey me. Beneath this stone
lies a treasure which is to be yours, and no one else may
touch it, so you must do exactly as I tell you." At the
word treasure Aladdin forgot his fears, and grasped the
ring as he was told, saying the names of his father and
grandfather. The stone came up quite easily, and some
steps appeared. "Go down," said the magician; "at the
foot of those steps you will find an open door leading into
three large halls. Tuck up your gown and go through
them without touching anything, or you will die instantly.
These halls lead into a garden of fine fruit trees. Walk on
until you come to a niche in a terrace where stands a
lighted lamp. Pour out the oil it contains, and bring it to
me." He drew a ring from his finger and gave it to
Aladdin, bidding him prosper.

Aladdin found everything as the magician had said,
gathered some fruit off the trees, and, having got the
lamp, arrived at the mouth of the cave. The magician
cried out in a great hurry: "Make haste and give me the
lamp." This Aladdin refused to do until he was out of the
cave. The magician flew into a terrible passion, and
throwing some more powder on to the fire, he said something,
and the stone rolled back into its place.

The magician left Persia for ever, which plainly showed
that he was no uncle of Aladdin's, but a cunning magician,
who had read in his magic books of a wonderful lamp,
which would make him the most powerful man in the
world. Though he alone knew where to find it, he could
only receive it from the hand of another. He had picked
out the foolish Aladdin for this purpose, intending to get
the lamp and kill him afterward.

For two days Aladdin remained in the dark, crying and
lamenting. At last he clasped his hands in prayer, and
in so doing rubbed the ring, which the magician had
forgotten to take from him. Immediately an enormous and
frightful genie rose out of the earth, saying: "What
wouldst thou with me? I am the Slave of the Ring, and
will obey thee in all things." Aladdin fearlessly replied:
"Deliver me from this place!" whereupon the earth
opened, and he found himself outside. As soon as his eyes
could bear the light he went home, but fainted on the
threshold. When he came to himself he told his mother
what had passed, and showed her the lamp and the fruits
he had gathered in the garden, which were, in reality,
precious stones. He then asked for some food. "Alas!
child," she said, "I have nothing in the house, but I have
spun a little cotton and will go and sell it." Aladdin bade
her keep her cotton, for he would sell the lamp instead.
As it was very dirty she began to rub it, that it might
fetch a higher price. Instantly a hideous genie appeared,
and asked what she would have. She fainted away, but
Aladdin, snatching the lamp, said boldly: "Fetch me
something to eat!" The genie returned with a silver bowl,
twelve silver plates containing rich meats, two silver cups,
and two bottles of wine. Aladdin's mother, when she
came to herself, said: "Whence comes this splendid feast?"
"Ask not, but eat," replied Aladdin. So they sat at
breakfast till it was dinner-time, and Aladdin told his
mother about the lamp. She begged him to sell it, and
have nothing to do with devils. "No," said Aladdin,
"since chance hath made us aware of its virtues, we will
use it, and the ring likewise, which I shall always wear on
my finger." When they had eaten all the genie had
brought, Aladdin sold one of the silver plates, and so on
until none were left. He then had recourse to the genie,
who gave him another set of plates, and thus they lived
for many years.

One day Aladdin heard an order from the Sultan
proclaimed that everyone was to stay at home and close his
shutters while the Princess, his daughter, went to and
from the bath. Aladdin was seized by a desire to see her
face, which was very difficult, as she always went veiled.
He hid himself behind the door of the bath, and peeped
through a chink. The Princess lifted her veil as she went
in, and looked so beautiful that Aladdin fell in love with
her at first sight. He went home so changed that his
mother was frightened. He told her he loved the Princess
so deeply that he could not live without her, and meant
to ask her in marriage of her father. His mother, on hearing
this, burst out laughing, but Aladdin at last prevailed
upon her to go before the Sultan and carry his request.
She fetched a napkin and laid in it the magic fruits from
the enchanted garden, which sparkled and shone like the
most beautiful jewels. She took these with her to please
the Sultan, and set out, trusting in the lamp. The Grand
Vizier and the lords of council had just gone in as she
entered the hall and placed herself in front of the Sultan.
He, however, took no notice of her. She went every day
for a week, and stood in the same place. When the council
broke up on the sixth day the Sultan said to his Vizier:
"I see a certain woman in the audience-chamber every
day carrying something in a napkin. Call her next time,
that I may find out what she wants." Next day, at a sign
from the Vizier, she went up to the foot of the throne and
remained kneeling till the Sultan said to her: "Rise, good
woman, and tell me what you want." She hesitated, so
the Sultan sent away all but the Vizier, and bade her
speak frankly, promising to forgive her beforehand for
anything she might say. She then told him of her son's
violent love for the Princess. "I prayed him to forget
her," she said, "but in vain; he threatened to do some
desperate deed if I refused to go and ask your Majesty for
the hand of the Princess. Now I pray you to forgive not
me alone, but my son Aladdin." The Sultan asked her
kindly what she had in the napkin, whereupon she unfolded
the jewels and presented them. He was thunderstruck,
and turning to the Vizier said: "What sayest
thou? Ought I not to bestow the Princess on one who
values her at such a price?" The Vizier, who wanted her
for his own son, begged the Sultan to withhold her for
three months, in the course of which he hoped his son
would contrive to make him a richer present. The Sultan
granted this, and told Aladdin's mother that, though he
consented to the marriage, she must not appear before
him again for three months.

Aladdin waited patiently for nearly three months, but
after two had elapsed his mother, going into the city to
buy oil, found every one rejoicing, and asked what was
going on. "Do you not know," was the answer, "that the
son of the Grand Vizier is to marry the Sultan's daughter
to-night?" Breathless, she ran and told Aladdin, who was
overwhelmed at first, but presently bethought him of the
lamp. He rubbed it, and the genie appeared, saying,
"What is thy will?" Aladdin replied: "The Sultan, as
thou knowest, has broken his promise to me, and the
Vizier's son is to have the Princess. My command is that
to-night you bring hither the bride and bridegroom."
"Master, I obey," said the genie. Aladdin then went to
his chamber, where, sure enough, at midnight the genie
transported the bed containing the Vizier's son and the
Princess. "Take this new-married man," he said, "and
put him outside in the cold, and return at daybreak."
Whereupon the genie took the Vizier's son out of bed,
leaving Aladdin with the Princess. "Fear nothing,"
Aladdin said to her; "you are my wife, promised to me by
your unjust father, and no harm shall come to you." The
Princess was too frightened to speak, and passed the most
miserable night of her life, while Aladdin lay down beside
her and slept soundly. At the appointed hour the genie
fetched in the shivering bridegroom, laid him in his place,
and transported the bed back to the palace.

Presently the Sultan came to wish his daughter
good-morning. The unhappy Vizier's son jumped up and hid
himself, while the Princess would not say a word, and
was very sorrowful. The Sultan sent her mother to her,
who said: "How comes it, child, that you will not speak
to your father? What has happened?" The Princess sighed
deeply, and at last told her mother how, during the night,
the bed had been carried into some strange house, and
what had passed there. Her mother did not believe her in
the least, but bade her rise and consider it an idle dream.

The following night exactly the same thing happened,
and next morning, on the Princess's refusal to speak, the
Sultan threatened to cut off her head. She then confessed
all, bidding him to ask the Vizier's son if it were not so.
The Sultan told the Vizier to ask his son, who owned the
truth, adding that, dearly as he loved the Princess, he had
rather die than go through another such fearful night, and
wished to be separated from her. His wish was granted,
and there was an end to feasting and rejoicing.

When the three months were over, Aladdin sent his
mother to remind the Sultan of his promise. She stood
in the same place as before, and the Sultan, who had
forgotten Aladdin, at once remembered him, and sent for
her. On seeing her poverty the Sultan felt less inclined
than ever to keep his word, and asked his Vizier's advice,
who counselled him to set so high a value on the Princess
that no man living could come up to it. The Sultan then
turned to Aladdin's mother, saying: "Good woman, a
Sultan must remember his promises, and I will remember
mine, but your son must first send me forty basins of gold
brimful of jewels, carried by forty black slaves, led by as
many white ones, splendidly dressed. Tell him that I
await his answer." The mother of Aladdin bowed low and
went home, thinking all was lost. She gave Aladdin the
message, adding: "He may wait long enough for your
answer!" "Not so long, mother, as you think," her son
replied. "I would do a great deal more than that for the
Princess." He summoned the genie, and in a few moments
the eighty slaves arrived, and filled up the small
house and garden. Aladdin made them set out to the
palace, two and two, followed by his mother. They were
so richly dressed, with such splendid jewels in their
girdles, that everyone crowded to see them and the basins of
gold they carried on their heads. They entered the palace,
and, after kneeling before the Sultan, stood in a half-circle
round the throne with their arms crossed, while Aladdin's
mother presented them to the Sultan. He hesitated no
longer, but said: "Good woman, return and tell your son
that I wait for him with open arms." She lost no time in
telling Aladdin, bidding him make haste. But Aladdin
first called the genie. "I want a scented bath," he said,
"a richly embroidered habit, a horse surpassing the Sultan's,
and twenty slaves to attend me. Besides this, six
slaves, beautifully dressed, to wait on my mother; and
lastly, ten thousand pieces of gold in ten purses." No
sooner said than done. Aladdin mounted his horse and
passed through the streets, the slaves strewing gold as
they went. Those who had played with him in his
childhood knew him not, he had grown so handsome. When
the Sultan saw him he came down from his throne,
embraced him, and led him into a hall where a feast was
spread, intending to marry him to the Princess that very
day. But Aladdin refused, saying, "I must build a palace
fit for her," and took his leave. Once home, he said to the
genie: "Build me a palace of the finest marble, set with
jasper, agate, and other precious stones. In the middle
you shall build me a large hall with a dome, its four walls
of massy gold and silver, each having six windows, whose
lattices, all except one which is to be left unfinished, must
be set with diamonds and rubies. There must be stables
and horses and grooms and slaves; go and see about it!"

The palace was finished by the next day, and the genie
carried him there and showed him all his orders faithfully
carried out, even to the laying of a velvet carpet from
Aladdin's palace to the Sultan's. Aladdin's mother then
dressed herself carefully, and walked to the palace with
her slaves, while he followed her on horseback. The Sultan
sent musicians with trumpets and cymbals to meet them,
so that the air resounded with music and cheers. She was
taken to the Princess, who saluted her and treated her
with great honor. At night the Princess said good-by to
her father, and set out on the carpet for Aladdin's palace,
with his mother at her side, and followed by the hundred
slaves. She was charmed at the sight of Aladdin, who ran
to receive her. "Princess," he said, "blame your beauty
for my boldness if I have displeased you." She told him
that, having seen him, she willingly obeyed her father in
this matter. After the wedding had taken place Aladdin
led her into the hall, where a feast was spread, and she
supped with him, after which they danced till midnight.
Next day Aladdin invited the Sultan to see the palace.
On entering the hall with the four-and-twenty windows,
with their rubies, diamonds, and emeralds, he cried: "It
is a world's wonder! There is only one thing that
surprises me. Was it by accident that one window was left
unfinished?" "No, sir, by design," returned Aladdin. "I
wished your Majesty to have the glory of finishing this
palace." The Sultan was pleased, and sent for the best
jewelers in the city. He showed them the unfinished
window, and bade them fit it up like the others. "Sir,"
replied their spokesman, "we cannot find jewels enough."
The Sultan had his own fetched, which they soon used,
but to no purpose, for in a month's time the work was
not half done. Aladdin, knowing that their task was vain,
bade them undo their work and carry the jewels back, and
the genie finished the window at his command. The Sultan
was surprised to receive his jewels again, and visited
Aladdin, who showed him the window finished. The Sultan
embraced him, the envious Vizier meanwhile hinting
that it was the work of enchantment.

Aladdin had won the hearts of the people by his gentle
bearing. He was made captain of the Sultan's armies, and
won several battles for him, but remained modest and
courteous as before, and lived thus in peace and content
for several years.

But far away in Africa the magician remembered Aladdin,
and by his magic arts discovered that Aladdin, instead
of perishing miserably in the cave, had escaped, and
had married a princess, with whom he was living in great
honor and wealth. He knew that the poor tailor's son
could only have accomplished this by means of the lamp,
and traveled night and day until he reached the capital
of China, bent on Aladdin's ruin. As he passed through
the town he heard people talking everywhere about a
marvellous palace. "Forgive my ignorance," he asked,
"what is this palace you speak Of?" "Have you not heard
of Prince Aladdin's palace," was the reply, "the greatest
wonder of the world? I will direct you if you have a mind
to see it." The magician thanked him who spoke, and
having seen the palace, knew that it had been raised
by the Genie of the Lamp, and became half mad with
rage. He determined to get hold of the lamp, and again
plunge Aladdin into the deepest poverty.

Unluckily, Aladdin had gone a-hunting for eight days,
which gave the magician plenty of time. He bought a
dozen copper lamps, put them into a basket, and went to
the palace, crying: "New lamps for old!" followed by a
jeering crowd. The Princess, sitting in the hall of
four-and-twenty windows, sent a slave to find out what the
noise was about, who came back laughing, so that the
Princess scolded her. "Madam," replied the slave, "who
can help laughing to see an old fool offering to exchange
fine new lamps for old ones?" Another slave, hearing this,
said: "There is an old one on the cornice there which he
can have." Now this was the magic lamp, which Aladdin
had left there, as he could not take it out hunting with
him. The Princess, not knowing its value, laughingly
bade the slave take it and make the exchange. She went
and said to the magician: "Give me a new lamp for this."
He snatched it and bade the slave take her choice, amid
the jeers of the crowd. Little he cared, but left off crying
his lamps, and went out of the city gates to a lonely place,
where he remained till nightfall, when he pulled out the
lamp and rubbed it. The genie appeared, and at the
magician's command carried him, together with the
palace and the Princess in it, to a lonely place in Africa.

Next morning the Sultan looked out of the window
toward Aladdin's palace and rubbed his eyes, for it was
gone. He sent for the Vizier and asked what had become
of the palace. The Vizier looked out too, and was lost in
astonishment. He again put it down to enchantment, and
this time the Sultan believed him, and sent thirty men on
horseback to fetch Aladdin in chains. They met him riding
home, bound him, and forced him to go with them
on foot. The people, however, who loved him, followed,
armed, to see that he came to no harm. He was carried
before the Sultan, who ordered the executioner to cut off
his head. The executioner made Aladdin kneel down,
bandaged his eyes, and raised his scimitar to strike. At
that instant the Vizier, who saw that the crowd had forced
their way into the courtyard and were scaling the walls to
rescue Aladdin, called to the executioner to stay his hand.
The people, indeed, looked so threatening that the Sultan
gave way and ordered Aladdin to be unbound, and
pardoned him in the sight of the crowd. Aladdin now
begged to know what he had done. "False wretch!" said
the Sultan, "come thither," and showed him from the
window the place where his palace had stood. Aladdin
was so amazed that he could not say a word. "Where is
my palace and my daughter?" demanded the Sultan. "For
the first I am not so deeply concerned, but my daughter
I must have, and you must find her or lose your head."
Aladdin begged for forty days in which to find her,
promising, if he failed, to return and suffer death at the
Sultan's pleasure. His prayer was granted, and he went
forth sadly from the Sultan's presence. For three days he
wandered about like a madman, asking everyone what
had become of his palace, but they only laughed and
pitied him. He came to the banks of a river, and knelt
down to say his prayers before throwing himself in. In
so doing he rubbed the magic ring he still wore. The
genie he had seen in the cave appeared, and asked his
will. "Save my life, genie," said Aladdin, "bring my
palace back." "That is not in my power," said the genie;
"I am only the Slave of the Ring; you must ask him of the
lamp." "Even so," said Aladdin, "but thou canst take
me to the palace, and set me down under my dear wife's
window." He at once found himself in Africa, under the
window of the Princess, and fell asleep out of sheer

He was awakened by the singing of the birds, and his
heart was lighter. He saw plainly that all his misfortunes
were owing to the loss of the lamp, and vainly wondered
who had robbed him of it.

That morning the Princess rose earlier than she had
done since she had been carried into Africa by the
magician, whose company she was forced to endure once a
day. She, however, treated him so harshly that he dared
not live there altogether. As she was dressing, one of her
women looked out and saw Aladdin. The Princess ran
and opened the window, and at the noise she made Aladdin
looked up. She called to him to come to her, and
great was the joy of these lovers at seeing each other again.
After he had kissed her Aladdin said: "I beg of you,
Princess, in God's name, before we speak of anything else,
for your own sake and mine, tell me that has become of an
old lamp I left on the cornice in the hall of four-and-twenty
windows, when I went a-hunting." "Alas!" she
said, "I am the innocent cause of our sorrows," and told
him of the exchange of the lamp. "Now I know," cried
Aladdin, "that we have to thank the African magician for
this! Where is the lamp?" "He carries it about with him,"
said the Princess. "I know, for he pulled it out of his
breast to show me. He wishes me to break my faith with
you and marry him, saying that you were beheaded by
my father's command. He is for ever speaking ill of you
but I only reply by my tears. If I persist, I doubt not but
he will use violence." Aladdin comforted her, and left her
for a while. He changed clothes with the first person he
met in the town, and having bought a certain powder,
returned to the Princess, who let him in by a little side
door. "Put on your most beautiful dress," he said to her
"and receive the magician with smiles, leading him to
believe that you have forgotten me. Invite him to sup with
you, and say you wish to taste the wine of his country.
He will go for some and while he is gone I will tell you
what to do." She listened carefully to Aladdin and when
he left she arrayed herself gaily for the first time since she
left China. She put on a girdle and head-dress of
diamonds, and, seeing in a glass that she was more beautiful
than ever, received the magician, saying, to his great
amazement: "I have made up my mind that Aladdin is
dead, and that all my tears will not bring him back to me,
so I am resolved to mourn no more, and have therefore
invited you to sup with me; but I am tired of the wines
of China, and would fain taste those of Africa." The
magician flew to his cellar, and the Princess put the powder
Aladdin had given her in her cup. When he returned
she asked him to drink her health in the wine of Africa,
handing him her cup in exchange for his, as a sign she was
reconciled to him. Before drinking the magician made
her a speech in praise of her beauty, but the Princess cut
him short, saying: "Let us drink first, and you shall say
what you will afterward." She set her cup to her lips and
kept it there, while the magician drained his to the dregs
and fell back lifeless. The Princess then opened the door
to Aladdin, and flung her arms round his neck; but Aladdin
put her away, bidding her leave him, as he had more
to do. He then went to the dead magician, took the lamp
out of his vest, and bade the genie carry the palace and
all in it back to China. This was done, and the Princess
in her chamber only felt two little shocks, and little
thought she was at home again.

The Sultan, who was sitting in his closet, mourning for
his lost daughter, happened to look up, and rubbed his
eyes, for there stood the palace as before! He hastened
thither, and Aladdin received him in the hall of the
four-and-twenty windows, with the Princess at his side.
Aladdin told him what had happened, and showed him the
dead body of the magician, that he might believe. A ten
days' feast was proclaimed, and it seemed as if Aladdin
might now live the rest of his life in peace; but it was not
to be.

The African magician had a younger brother, who was,
if possible, more wicked and more cunning than himself.
He traveled to China to avenge his brother's death, and
went to visit a pious woman called Fatima, thinking she
might be of use to him. He entered her cell and clapped
a dagger to her breast, telling her to rise and do his
bidding on pain of death. He changed clothes with her,
colored his face like hers, put on her veil, and murdered
her, that she might tell no tales. Then he went toward
the palace of Aladdin, and all the people, thinking he was
the holy woman, gathered round him, kissing his hands
and begging his blessing. When he got to the palace there
was such a noise going on round him that the Princess
bade her slave look out of the window and ask what was
the matter. The slave said it was the holy woman, curing
people by her touch of their ailments, whereupon the
Princess, who had long desired to see Fatima, sent for her.
On coming to the Princess the magician offered up a
prayer for her health and prosperity. When he had done
the Princess made him sit by her, and begged him to stay
with her always. The false Fatima, who wished for nothing
better, consented, but kept his veil down for fear of
discovery. The Princess showed him the hall, and asked
him what he thought of it. "It is truly beautiful," said
the false Fatima. "In my mind it wants but one thing."
"And what is that?" said the Princess. "If only a roc's
egg," replied he, "were hung up from the middle of this
dome, it would be the wonder of the world."

After this the Princess could think of nothing but the
roc's egg, and when Aladdin returned from hunting he
found her in a very ill humor. He begged to know what
was amiss, and she told him that all her pleasure in the
hall was spoiled for the want of a roc's egg hanging from
the dome. "If that is all," replied Aladdin, "you shall
soon be happy." He left her and rubbed the lamp, and
when the genie appeared commanded him to bring a roc's
egg. The genie gave such a loud and terrible shriek that
the hall shook. "Wretch!" he cried, "is it not enough
that I have done everything for you, but you must command
me to bring my master and hang him up in the
midst of this dome? You and your wife and your palace
deserve to be burnt to ashes, but that this request does
not come from you, but from the brother of the African
magician, whom you destroyed. He is now in your palace
disguised as the holy woman--whom he murdered. He it
was who put that wish into your wife's head. Take care
of yourself, for he means to kill you." So saying, the
genie disappeared.

Aladdin went back to the Princess, saying his head
ached, and requesting that the holy Fatima should be
fetched to lay her hands on it. But when the magician
came near, Aladdin, seizing his dagger, pierced him to the
heart. "What have you done?" cried the Princess. "You
have killed the holy woman!" "Not so," replied Aladdin,
"but a wicked magician," and told her of how she had
been deceived.

After this Aladdin and his wife lived in peace. He
succeeded the Sultan when he died, and reigned for many
years, leaving behind him a long line of kings.[1]

[1] Arabian Nights.


A father had two sons, of whom the eldest was clever
and bright, and always knew what he was about; but the
youngest was stupid, and couldn't learn or understand
anything. So much so that those who saw him exclaimed:
"What a burden he'll be to his father!" Now when there
was anything to be done, the eldest had always to do it;
but if something was required later or in the night-time,
and the way led through the churchyard or some such
ghostly place, he always replied: "Oh! no, father: nothing
will induce me to go there, it makes me shudder!" for he
was afraid. Or, when they sat of an evening around the
fire telling stories which made one's flesh creep, the
listeners sometimes said: "Oh! it makes one shudder," the
youngest sat in a corner, heard the exclamation, and
could not understand what it meant. "They are always
saying it makes one shudder! it makes one shudder!
Nothing makes me shudder. It's probably an art quite
beyond me."

Now it happened that his father said to him one day:
"Hearken, you there in the corner; you are growing big
and strong, and you must learn to earn your own bread.
Look at your brother, what pains he takes; but all the
money I've spent on your education is thrown away."
"My dear father," he replied, "I will gladly learn--in
fact, if it were possible I should like to learn to shudder;
I don't understand that a bit yet." The eldest laughed
when he heard this, and thought to himself: "Good
heavens! what a ninny my brother is! he'll never come to
any good; as the twig is bent, so is the tree inclined."
The father sighed, and answered him: "You'll soon learn
to shudder; but that won't help you to make a living."

Shortly after this, when the sexton came to pay them
a visit, the father broke out to him, and told him what
a bad hand his youngest son was at everything: he knew
nothing and learned nothing. "Only think! when I asked
him how he purposed gaining a livelihood, he actually
asked to be taught to shudder." "If that's all he wants,"
said the sexton, "I can teach him that; just you send
him to me, I'll soon polish him up." The father was quite
pleased with the proposal, because he thought: "It will
be a good discipline for the youth." And so the sexton
took him into his house, and his duty was to toll the bell.
After a few days he woke him at midnight, and bade him
rise and climb into the tower and toll. "Now, my friend,
I'll teach you to shudder," thought he. He stole forth
secretly in front, and when the youth was up above, and
had turned round to grasp the bell-rope, he saw, standing
opposite the hole of the belfry, a white figure. "Who's
there?" he called out, but the figure gave no answer, and
neither stirred nor moved. "Answer," cried the youth,
"or begone; you have no business here at this hour of the
night." But the sexton remained motionless, so that the
youth might think that it was a ghost. The youth called
out the second time: "What do you want here? Speak if
you are an honest fellow, or I'll knock you down the stairs."
The sexton thought: "He can't mean that in earnest," so
gave forth no sound, and stood as though he were made
of stone. Then the youth shouted out to him the third
time, and as that too had no effect, he made a dash at the
spectre and knocked it down the stairs, so that it fell
about ten steps and remained lying in a corner. Thereupon
he tolled the bell, went home to bed without saying
a word, and fell asleep. The sexton's wife waited a long
time for her husband, but he never appeared. At last
she became anxious, and woke the youth, and asked:
"Don't you know where my husband is? He went up to
the tower in front of you." "No," answered the youth;
"but someone stood on the stairs up there just opposite
the trap-door in the belfry, and because he wouldn't
answer me, or go away, I took him for a rogue and
knocked him down. You'd better go and see if it was he;
I should be much distressed if it were." The wife ran and
found her husband who was lying groaning in a corner,
with his leg broken.

She carried him down, and then hurried with loud
protestations to the youth's father. "Your son has been
the cause of a pretty misfortune," she cried; "he threw my
husband downstairs so that he broke his leg. Take the
good-for-nothing wretch out of our house." The father
was horrified, hurried to the youth, and gave him a

"What unholy pranks are these? The evil one must
have put them into your head." "Father," he replied,
"only listen to me; I am quite guiltless. He stood there
in the night, like one who meant harm. I didn't know
who it was, and warned him three times to speak or
begone." "Oh!" groaned the father, "you'll bring me
nothing but misfortune; get out of my sight, I won't have
anything more to do with you." "Yes, father, willingly; only
wait till daylight, then I'll set out and learn to shudder,
and in that way I shall be master of an art which will
gain me a living." "Learn what you will," said the father,
"it's all one to me. Here are fifty dollars for you, set
forth into the wide world with them; but see you tell no
one where you come from or who your father is, for I am
ashamed of you." "Yes, father, whatever you wish; and
if that's all you ask, I can easily keep it in mind."

When day broke the youth put the fifty dollars into his
pocket, set out on the hard high road, and kept muttering
to himself: "If I could only shudder! if I could only
shudder!" Just at this moment a man came by who
heard the youth speaking to himself, and when they had
gone on a bit and were in sight of the gallows the man
said to him: "Look! there is the tree where seven people
have been hanged, and are now learning to fly; sit down
under it and wait till nightfall, and then you'll pretty
soon learn to shudder." "If that's all I have to do,"
answered the youth, "it's easily done; but if I learn to
shudder so quickly, then you shall have my fifty dollars.
Just come back to me to-morrow morning early." Then
the youth went to the gallows-tree and sat down underneath
it, and waited for the evening; and because he felt
cold he lit himself a fire. But at midnight it got so chill
that in spite of the fire he couldn't keep warm. And as
the wind blew the corpses one against the other, tossing
them to and fro, he thought to himself: "If you are
perishing down here by the fire, how those poor things up
there must be shaking and shivering!" And because he had
a tender heart, he put up a ladder, which he climbed
unhooked one body after the other, and took down all the
seven. Then he stirred the fire, blew it up, and placed
them all round in a circle, that they might warm
themselves. But they sat there and did not move, and the
fire caught their clothes. Then he spoke: "Take care, or
I'll hang you up again." But the dead men did not hear
and let their rags go on burning. Then he got angry, and
said: "If you aren't careful yourselves, then I can't help
you, and I don't mean to burn with you"; and he hung
them up again in a row. Then he sat down at his fire and
fell asleep. On the following morning the man came to
him, and, wishing to get his fifty dollars, said: "Now you
know what it is to shudder." "No," he answered, "how
should I? Those fellows up there never opened their
mouths, and were so stupid that they let those few old
tatters they have on their bodies burn." Then the man
saw he wouldn't get his fifty dollars that day, and went
off, saying: "Well, I'm blessed if I ever met such a person
in my life before."

The youth went too on his way, and began to murmur
to himself: "Oh! if I could only shudder! if I could only
shudder!" A carrier who was walking behind him heard
these words, and asked him: "Who are you" "I don't
know," said the youth. "Where do you hail from?" "I
don't know." "Who's your father?" "I mayn't say."
"What are you constantly muttering to yourself?" "Oh!"
said the youth, "I would give worlds to shudder, but no
one can teach me." "Stuff and nonsense!" spoke the
carrier; "come along with me, and I'll soon put that
right." The youth went with the carrier, and in the evening
they reached an inn, where they were to spend the
night. Then, just as he was entering the room, he said
again, quite aloud: "Oh! if I could only shudder! if I could
only shudder!" The landlord, who heard this, laughed
and said: "If that's what you're sighing for, you shall be
given every opportunity here." "Oh! hold your tongue!"
said the landlord's wife; "so many people have paid for
their curiosity with their lives, it were a thousand pities
if those beautiful eyes were never again to behold
daylight." But the youth said: "No matter how difficult, I
insist on learning it; why, that's what I've set out to do."
He left the landlord no peace till he told him that in the
neighborhood stood a haunted castle, where one could
easily learn to shudder if one only kept watch in it for
three nights. The King had promised the man who dared
to do this thing his daughter as wife, and she was the
most beautiful maiden under the sun. There was also
much treasure hid in the castle, guarded by evil spirits,
which would then be free, and was sufficient to make a
poor man more than rich. Many had already gone in, but
so far none had ever come out again. So the youth went
to the King and spoke: "If I were allowed, I should much
like to watch for three nights in the castle." The King
looked at him, and because he pleased him, he said:
"You can ask for three things, none of them living, and
those you may take with you into the castle." Then he
answered: "Well, I shall beg for a fire, a turning lathe, and
a carving bench with the knife attached."

On the following day the King had everything put into
the castle; and when night drew on the youth took up his
position there, lit a bright fire in one of the rooms, placed
the carving bench with the knife close to it, and sat himself
down on the turning lathe. "Oh! if I could only shudder!"
he said: "but I sha'n't learn it here either." Toward
midnight he wanted to make up the fire, and as he was
blowing up a blaze he heard a shriek from a corner. "Ou,
miou! how cold we are!" "You fools!" he cried; "why do
you scream? If you are cold, come and sit at the fire and
warm yourselves." And as he spoke two huge black cats
sprang fiercely forward and sat down, one on each side of
him, and gazed wildly at him with their fiery eyes. After
a time, when they had warmed themselves, they said:
"Friend, shall we play a little game of cards?" "Why
not?" he replied; "but first let me see your paws." Then
they stretched out their claws. "Ha!" said he; "what long
nails you've got! Wait a minute: I must first cut them
off." Thereupon he seized them by the scruff of their
necks, lifted them on to the carving bench, and screwed
down their paws firmly. "After watching you narrowly,"
said he, "I no longer feel any desire to play cards with
you"; and with these words he struck them dead and
threw them out into the water. But when he had thus
sent the two of them to their final rest, and was again
about to sit down at the fire, out of every nook and
corner came forth black cats and black dogs with fiery
chains in such swarms that he couldn't possibly get away
from them. They yelled in the most ghastly manner,
jumped upon his fire, scattered it all, and tried to put it
out. He looked on quietly for a time, but when it got
beyond a joke he seized his carving-knife and called out:
"Be off, you rabble rout!" and let fly at them. Some of
them fled away, and the others he struck dead and threw
them out into the pond below. When he returned he blew
up the sparks of the fire once more, and warmed himself.
And as he sat thus his eyes refused to keep open any
longer, and a desire to sleep stole over him. Then he
looked around him and beheld in the corner a large bed.
"The very thing," he said, and laid himself down in it.
But when he wished to close his eyes the bed began to
move by itself, and ran all round the castle. "Capital,"
he said, "only a little quicker." Then the bed sped on as
if drawn by six horses, over thresholds and stairs, up this
way and down that. All of a sudden--crash, crash! with
a bound it turned over, upside down, and lay like a
mountain on the top of him. But he tossed the blankets
and pillows in the air, emerged from underneath, and
said: "Now anyone who has the fancy for it may go a
drive," lay down at his fire, and slept till daylight. In the
morning the King came, and when he beheld him lying
on the ground he imagined the ghosts had been too much
for him, and that he was dead. Then he said: "What a
pity! and such a fine fellow he was." The youth heard
this, got up, and said: "It's not come to that yet." Then
the King was astonished, but very glad, and asked how
it had fared with him. "First-rate," he answered; "and
now I've survived the one night, I shall get through the
other two also." The landlord, when he went to him,
opened his eyes wide, and said: "Well, I never thought to
see you alive again. Have you learned now what
shuddering is ?" "No," he replied, "it's quite hopeless; if
someone could only tell me how to!"

The second night he went up again to the old castle,
sat down at the fire, and began his old refrain: "If I could
only shudder!" As midnight approached, a noise and din
broke out, at first gentle, but gradually increasing; then
all was quiet for a minute, and at length, with a loud
scream, half of a man dropped down the chimney and fell
before him. "Hi, up there!" shouted he; "there's another
half wanted down here, that's not enough"; then the din
commenced once more, there was a shrieking and a yelling,
and then the other half fell down. "Wait a bit," he
said; "I'll stir up the fire for you." When he had done
this and again looked around, the two pieces had united,
and a horrible-looking man sat on his seat. "Come," said
the youth, "I didn't bargain for that, the seat is mine."
The man tried to shove him away, but the youth wouldn't
allow it for a moment, and, pushing him off by force,
sat down in his place again. Then more men dropped
down, one after the other, who fetching nine skeleton legs
and two skulls, put them up and played ninepins with
them. The youth thought he would like to play too,
and said: "Look here; do you mind my joining the game?"
"No, not if you have money." "I've money enough," he
replied, "but your balls aren't round enough." Then he
took the skulls, placed them on his lathe, and turned
them till they were round. "Now they'll roll along better,"
said he, "and houp-la! now the fun begins." He played
with them and lost some of his money, but when twelve
struck everything vanished before his eyes. He lay down
and slept peacefully. The next morning the King came,
anxious for news. "How have you got on this time?" he
asked. "I played ninepins," he answered, "and lost a few
pence." "Didn't you shudder then?" "No such luck,"
said he; "I made myself merry. Oh! if I only knew what
it was to shudder!"

On the third night he sat down again on his bench, and
said, in the most desponding way: "If I could only shudder!"
When it got late, six big men came in carrying a
coffin. Then he cried: "Ha! ha! that's most likely my
little cousin who only died a few days ago"; and beckoning
with his finger he called out: "Come, my small cousin,
come." They placed the coffin on the ground, and he
approached it and took off the cover. In it lay a dead man.
He felt his face, and it was cold as ice. "Wait," he said
"I'll heat you up a bit," went to the fire, warmed his hand,
and laid it on the man's face, but the dead remained cold.
Then he lifted him out, sat down at the fire, laid him on
his knee, and rubbed his arms that the blood should
circulate again. When that too had no effect it occurred
to him that if two people lay together in bed they warmed
each other; so he put him into the bed, covered him up,
and lay down beside him; after a time the corpse became
warm and began to move. Then the youth said: "Now,
my little cousin, what would have happened if I hadn't
warmed you?" But the dead man rose up and cried out:
"Now I will strangle you." "What!" said he, "is that all
the thanks I get? You should be put straight back into
your coffin," lifted him up, threw him in, and closed the
lid. Then the six men came and carried him out again.
"I simply can't shudder," he said, "and it's clear I sha'n't
learn it in a lifetime here."

Then a man entered, of more than ordinary size and of
a very fearful appearance; but he was old and had a white
beard. "Oh! you miserable creature, now you will soon
know what it is to shudder," he cried, "for you must die."
"Not so quickly," answered the youth. "If I am to die,
you must catch me first." "I shall soon lay hold of you,"
spoke the monster. "Gently, gently, don't boast too
much, I'm as strong as you, and stronger too." "We'll
soon see," said the old man; "if you are stronger than I
then I'll let you off; come, let's have a try." Then he led
him through some dark passages to a forge, and grasping
an axe he drove one of the anvils with a blow into the
earth. "I can do better than that," cried the youth, and
went to the other anvil. The old man drew near him in
order to watch closely, and his white beard hung right
down. The youth seized the axe, cleft the anvil open, and
jammed in the old man's beard. "Now I have you," said
the youth; "this time it's your turn to die." Then he
seized an iron rod and belabored the old man till he,
whimpering, begged him to leave off, and he would give
him great riches. The youth drew out the axe and let him
go. The old man led him back to the castle and showed
him in a cellar three chests of gold. "One of these," said
he, "belongs to the poor, one to the King, and the third
is yours." At that moment twelve struck, and the spirit
vanished, leaving the youth alone in the dark. "I'll surely
be able to find a way out," said he, and groping about he
at length found his way back to the room, and fell asleep
at his fire. The next morning the King came, and said:
"Well, now you've surely learned to shudder?" "No," he
answered; "what can it be? My dead cousin was here,
and an old bearded man came, who showed me heaps of
money down below there, but what shuddering is no one
has told me." Then the King spoke: "You have freed
the castle from its curse, and you shall marry my
daughter." "That's all charming," he said; "but I still don't
know what it is to shudder."

Then the gold was brought up, and the wedding was
celebrated, but the young King, though he loved his wife
dearly, and though he was very happy, still kept on saying:
"If I could only shudder! if I could only shudder!"
At last he reduced her to despair. Then her maid said:
"I'll help you; we'll soon make him shudder." So she
went out to the stream that flowed through the garden,
and had a pail full of little gudgeons brought to her. At
night, when the young King was asleep, his wife had to
pull the clothes off him, and pour the pail full of little
gudgeons over him, so that the little fish swam all about
him. Then he awoke and cried out: "Oh! how I shudder,
how I shudder, dear wife! Yes, now I know what
shuddering is."[1]

[1] Grimm.


There was once upon a time a poor miller who had a
very beautiful daughter. Now it happened one day that
he had an audience with the King, and in order to appear
a person of some importance he told him that he had a
daughter who could spin straw into gold. "Now that's
a talent worth having," said the King to the miller; "if
your daughter is as clever as you say, bring her to my
palace to-morrow, and I'll put her to the test." When the
girl was brought to him he led her into a room full of
straw, gave her a spinning-wheel and spindle, and said:
"Now set to work and spin all night till early dawn, and
if by that time you haven't spun the straw into gold you
shall die." Then he closed the door behind him and left
her alone inside.

So the poor miller's daughter sat down, and didn't
know what in the world she was to do. She hadn't the
least idea of how to spin straw into gold, and became at
last so miserable that she began to cry. Suddenly the
door opened, and in stepped a tiny little man and said:
"Good-evening, Miss Miller-maid; why are you crying so
bitterly?" "Oh!" answered the girl, "I have to spin straw
into gold, and haven't a notion how it's done." "What
will you give me if I spin it for you?" asked the manikin.
"My necklace," replied the girl. The little man took the
necklace, sat himself down at the wheel, and whir, whir,
whir, the wheel went round three times, and the bobbin
was full. Then he put on another, and whir, whir, whir,
the wheel went round three times, and the second too
was full; and so it went on till the morning, when all the
straw was spun away, and all the bobbins were full of
gold. As soon as the sun rose the King came, and when
he perceived the gold he was astonished and delighted,
but his heart only lusted more than ever after the precious
metal. He had the miller's daughter put into another
room full of straw, much bigger than the first, and bade
her, if she valued her life, spin it all into gold before the
following morning. The girl didn't know what to do, and
began to cry; then the door opened as before, and the tiny
little man appeared and said: "What'll you give me if I
spin the straw into gold for you?" "The ring from my
finger," answered the girl. The manikin took the ring,
and whir! round went the spinning-wheel again, and when
morning broke he had spun all the straw into glittering
gold. The King was pleased beyond measure at the sights
but his greed for gold was still not satisfied, and he had
the miller's daughter brought into a yet bigger room full
of straw, and said: "You must spin all this away in the
night; but if you succeed this time you shall become my
wife." "She's only a miller's daughter, it's true," he
thought; "but I couldn't find a richer wife if I were to
search the whole world over." When the girl was alone
the little man appeared for the third time, and said:
"What'll you give me if I spin the straw for you once
again?" "I've nothing more to give," answered the girl.
"Then promise me when you are Queen to give me your
first child." "Who knows what may not happen before
that?" thought the miller's daughter; and besides, she
saw no other way out of it, so she promised the manikin
what he demanded, and he set to work once more and
spun the straw into gold. When the King came in the
morning, and found everything as he had desired, he
straightway made her his wife, and the miller's daughter
became a queen.

When a year had passed a beautiful son was born to her,
and she thought no more of the little man, till all of a
sudden one day he stepped into her room and said: "Now
give me what you promised." The Queen was in a great
state, and offered the little man all the riches in her kingdom
if he would only leave her the child. But the manikin
said: "No, a living creature is dearer to me than all
the treasures in the world." Then the Queen began to cry
and sob so bitterly that the little man was sorry for her,
and said: "I'll give you three days to guess my name, and
if you find it out in that time you may keep your child."

Then the Queen pondered the whole night over all the
names she had ever heard, and sent a messenger to scour
the land, and to pick up far and near any names he could
come across. When the little man arrived on the following
day she began with Kasper, Melchior, Belshazzar, and all
the other names she knew, in a string, but at each one the
manikin called out: "That's not my name." The next day
she sent to inquire the names of all the people in the
neighborhood, and had a long list of the most uncommon
and extraordinary for the little man when he made his
appearance. "Is your name, perhaps, Sheepshanks
Cruickshanks, Spindleshanks?" but he always replied:
"That's not my name." On the third day the messenger
returned and announced: "I have not been able to find
any new names, but as I came upon a high hill round the
corner of the wood, where the foxes and hares bid each
other good-night, I saw a little house, and in front of the
house burned a fire, and round the fire sprang the most
grotesque little man, hopping on one leg and crying:

  "To-morrow I brew, to-day I bake,
    And then the child away I'll take;
    For little deems my royal dame
    That Rumpelstiltzkin is my name!"

You can imagine the Queen's delight at hearing the
name, and when the little man stepped in shortly afterward
and asked: "Now, my lady Queen, what's my name?"
she asked first: "Is your name Conrad?" "No." "Is your
name Harry?" "No." "Is your name perhaps,
Rumpelstiltzkin?" "Some demon has told you that! some demon
has told you that!" screamed the little man, and in his
rage drove his right foot so far into the ground that it
sank in up to his waist; then in a passion he seized the
left foot with both hands and tore himself in two.[1]

[1] Grimm.


Once upon a time, in a very far-off country, there
lived a merchant who had been so fortunate in all his
undertakings that he was enormously rich. As he had,
however, six sons and six daughters, he found that his
money was not too much to let them all have everything
they fancied, as they were accustomed to do.

But one day a most unexpected misfortune befell them.
Their house caught fire and was speedily burnt to the
ground, with all the splendid furniture, the books,
pictures, gold, silver, and precious goods it contained;
and this was only the beginning of their troubles. Their
father, who had until this moment prospered in all ways,
suddenly lost every ship he had upon the sea, either by
dint of pirates, shipwreck, or fire. Then he heard that his
clerks in distant countries, whom he trusted entirely, had
proved unfaithful; and at last from great wealth he fell
into the direst poverty.

All that he had left was a little house in a desolate place
at least a hundred leagues from the town in which he had
lived, and to this he was forced to retreat with his
children, who were in despair at the idea of leading such a
different life. Indeed, the daughters at first hoped that
their friends, who had been so numerous while they were
rich, would insist on their staying in their houses now they
no longer possessed one. But they soon found that they
were left alone, and that their former friends even attributed
their misfortunes to their own extravagance, and
showed no intention of offering them any help. So nothing
was left for them but to take their departure to the
cottage, which stood in the midst of a dark forest, and
seemed to be the most dismal place upon the face of the
earth. As they were too poor to have any servants, the
girls had to work hard, like peasants, and the sons, for
their part, cultivated the fields to earn their living.
Roughly clothed, and living in the simplest way, the girls
regretted unceasingly the luxuries and amusements of
their former life; only the youngest tried to be brave and
cheerful. She had been as sad as anyone when misfortune
overtook her father, but, soon recovering her natural
gaiety, she set to work to make the best of things, to
amuse her father and brothers as well as she could, and
to try to persuade her sisters to join her in dancing and
singing. But they would do nothing of the sort, and,
because she was not as doleful as themselves, they declared
that this miserable life was all she was fit for. But she
was really far prettier and cleverer than they were; indeed,
she was so lovely that she was always called Beauty.
After two years, when they were all beginning to get used
to their new life, something happened to disturb their
tranquillity. Their father received the news that one of
his ships, which he had believed to be lost, had come
safely into port with a rich cargo. All the sons and daughters
at once thought that their poverty was at an end, and
wanted to set out directly for the town; but their father,
who was more prudent, begged them to wait a little, and,
though it was harvest time, and he could ill be spared,
determined to go himself first, to make inquiries. Only the
youngest daughter had any doubt but that they would
soon again be as rich as they were before, or at least rich
enough to live comfortably in some town where they
would find amusement and gay companions once more.
So they all loaded their father with commissions for
jewels and dresses which it would have taken a fortune
to buy; only Beauty, feeling sure that it was of no use, did
not ask for anything. Her father, noticing her silence,
said: "And what shall I bring for you, Beauty?"

"The only thing I wish for is to see you come home
safely," she answered.

But this only vexed her sisters, who fancied she was
blaming them for having asked for such costly things.
Her father, however, was pleased, but as he thought that
at her age she certainly ought to like pretty presents, he
told her to choose something.

"Well, dear father," she said, "as you insist upon it, I
beg that you will bring me a rose. I have not seen one
since we came here, and I love them so much."

So the merchant set out and reached the town as
quickly as possible, but only to find that his former
companions, believing him to be dead, had divided between
them the goods which the ship had brought; and after six
months of trouble and expense he found himself as poor
as when he started, having been able to recover only just
enough to pay the cost of his journey. To make matters
worse, he was obliged to leave the town in the most
terrible weather, so that by the time he was within a few
leagues of his home he was almost exhausted with cold
and fatigue. Though he knew it would take some hours
to get through the forest, he was so anxious to be at his
journey's end that he resolved to go on; but night overtook
him, and the deep snow and bitter frost made it
impossible for his horse to carry him any further. Not a
house was to be seen; the only shelter he could get was
the hollow trunk of a great tree, and there he crouched all
the night which seemed to him the longest he had ever
known. In spite of his weariness the howling of the
wolves kept him awake, and even when at last the day
broke he was not much better off, for the falling snow had
covered up every path, and he did not know which way
to turn.

At length he made out some sort of track, and though
at the beginning it was so rough and slippery that he fell
down more than once, it presently became easier, and led
him into an avenue of trees which ended in a splendid
castle. It seemed to the merchant very strange that no
snow had fallen in the avenue, which was entirely
composed of orange trees, covered with flowers and fruit.
When he reached the first court of the castle he saw before
him a flight of agate steps, and went up them, and passed
through several splendidly furnished rooms. The pleasant
warmth of the air revived him, and he felt very hungry;
but there seemed to be nobody in all this vast and splendid
palace whom he could ask to give him something to
eat. Deep silence reigned everywhere, and at last, tired
of roaming through empty rooms and galleries, he stopped
in a room smaller than the rest, where a clear fire was
burning and a couch was drawn up closely to it. Thinking
that this must be prepared for someone who was
expected, he sat down to wait till he should come, and
very soon fell into a sweet sleep.

When his extreme hunger wakened him after several
hours, he was still alone; but a little table, upon which
was a good dinner, had been drawn up close to him, and,
as he had eaten nothing for twenty-four hours, he lost no
time in beginning his meal, hoping that he might soon
have an opportunity of thanking his considerate entertainer,
whoever it might be. But no one appeared, and
even after another long sleep, from which he awoke
completely refreshed, there was no sign of anybody, though
a fresh meal of dainty cakes and fruit was prepared upon
the little table at his elbow. Being naturally timid, the
silence began to terrify him, and he resolved to search
once more through all the rooms; but it was of no use.
Not even a servant was to be seen; there was no sign of
life in the palace! He began to wonder what he should do,
and to amuse himself by pretending that all the treasures
he saw were his own, and considering how he would
divide them among his children. Then he went down into
the garden, and though it was winter everywhere else,
here the sun shone, and the birds sang, and the flowers
bloomed, and the air was soft and sweet. The merchant,
in ecstacies with all he saw and heard, said to himself:

"All this must be meant for me. I will go this minute
and bring my children to share all these delights."

In spite of being so cold and weary when he reached the
castle, he had taken his horse to the stable and fed it.
Now he thought he would saddle it for his homeward
journey, and he turned down the path which led to the
stable. This path had a hedge of roses on each side of it,
and the merchant thought he had never seen or smelt
such exquisite flowers. They reminded him of his promise
to Beauty, and he stopped and had just gathered one to
take to her when he was startled by a strange noise behind
him. Turning round, he saw a frightful Beast, which
seemed to be very angry and said, in a terrible voice:

"Who told you that you might gather my roses? Was
it not enough that I allowed you to be in my palace and
was kind to you? This is the way you show your gratitude,
by stealing my flowers! But your insolence shall
not go unpunished." The merchant, terrified by these
furious words, dropped the fatal rose, and, throwing
himself on his knees, cried: "Pardon me, noble sir. I am
truly grateful to you for your hospitality, which was so
magnificent that I could not imagine that you would be
offended by my taking such a little thing as a rose." But
the Beast's anger was not lessened by this speech.

"You are very ready with excuses and flattery," he
cried; "but that will not save you from the death you

"Alas!" thought the merchant, "if my daughter
could only know what danger her rose has brought me

And in despair he began to tell the Beast all his
misfortunes, and the reason of his journey, not forgetting to
mention Beauty's request.

"A king's ransom would hardly have procured all that
my other daughters asked." he said: "but I thought that
I might at least take Beauty her rose. I beg you to forgive
me, for you see I meant no harm."

The Beast considered for a moment, and then he said,
in a less furious tone:

"I will forgive you on one condition--that is, that you
will give me one of your daughters."

"Ah!" cried the merchant, "if I were cruel enough to
buy my own life at the expense of one of my children's,
what excuse could I invent to bring her here?"

"No excuse would be necessary," answered the Beast.
"If she comes at all she must come willingly. On no other
condition will I have her. See if any one of them is
courageous enough, and loves you well enough to come
and save your life. You seem to be an honest man, so I
will trust you to go home. I give you a month to see if
either of your daughters will come back with you and stay
here, to let you go free. If neither of them is willing, you
must come alone, after bidding them good-by for ever,
for then you will belong to me. And do not imagine that
you can hide from me, for if you fail to keep your word
I will come and fetch you!" added the Beast grimly.

The merchant accepted this proposal, though he did
not really think any of his daughters could be persuaded
to come. He promised to return at the time appointed,
and then, anxious to escape from the presence of the
Beast, he asked permission to set off at once. But the
Beast answered that he could not go until next day.

"Then you will find a horse ready for you," he said.
"Now go and eat your supper, and await my orders."

The poor merchant, more dead than alive, went back
to his room, where the most delicious supper was already
served on the little table which was drawn up before a
blazing fire. But he was too terrified to eat, and only
tasted a few of the dishes, for fear the Beast should be
angry if he did not obey his orders. When he had finished
he heard a great noise in the next room, which he knew
meant that the Beast was coming. As he could do nothing
to escape his visit, the only thing that remained was to
seem as little afraid as possible; so when the Beast
appeared and asked roughly if he had supped well, the
merchant answered humbly that he had, thanks to his
host's kindness. Then the Beast warned him to remember
their agreement, and to prepare his daughter exactly for
what she had to expect.

"Do not get up to-morrow," he added, "until you see
the sun and hear a golden bell ring. Then you will find
your breakfast waiting for you here, and the horse you
are to ride will be ready in the courtyard. He will also
bring you back again when you come with your daughter
a month hence. Farewell. Take a rose to Beauty, and
remember your promise!"

The merchant was only too glad when the Beast went
away, and though he could not sleep for sadness, he lay
down until the sun rose. Then, after a hasty breakfast,
he went to gather Beauty's rose, and mounted his horse,
which carried him off so swiftly that in an instant he had
lost sight of the palace, and he was still wrapped in
gloomy thoughts when it stopped before the door of the

His sons and daughters, who had been very uneasy at
his long absence, rushed to meet him, eager to know the
result of his journey, which, seeing him mounted upon a
splendid horse and wrapped in a rich mantle, they
supposed to be favorable. He hid the truth from them at
first, only saying sadly to Beauty as he gave her the rose:

"Here is what you asked me to bring you; you little
know what it has cost."

But this excited their curiosity so greatly that presently
he told them his adventures from beginning to end, and
then they were all very unhappy. The girls lamented
loudly over their lost hopes, and the sons declared that
their father should not return to this terrible castle, and
began to make plans for killing the Beast if it should
come to fetch him. But he reminded them that he had
promised to go back. Then the girls were very angry
with Beauty, and said it was all her fault, and that if she
had asked for something sensible this would never have
happened, and complained bitterly that they should have
to suffer for her folly.

Poor Beauty, much distressed, said to them:

"I have, indeed, caused this misfortune, but I assure
you I did it innocently. Who could have guessed that to
ask for a rose in the middle of summer would cause so
much misery? But as I did the mischief it is only just
that I should suffer for it. I will therefore go back with
my father to keep his promise."

At first nobody would hear of this arrangement, and
her father and brothers, who loved her dearly, declared
that nothing should make them let her go; but Beauty
was firm. As the time drew near she divided all her little
possessions between her sisters, and said good-by to
everything she loved, and when the fatal day came she
encouraged and cheered her father as they mounted
together the horse which had brought him back. It seemed
to fly rather than gallop, but so smoothly that Beauty was
not frightened; indeed, she would have enjoyed the journey
if she had not feared what might happen to her at the
end of it. Her father still tried to persuade her to go back,
but in vain. While they were talking the night fell, and
then, to their great surprise, wonderful colored lights
began to shine in all directions, and splendid fireworks
blazed out before them; all the forest was illuminated by
them, and even felt pleasantly warm, though it had been
bitterly cold before. This lasted until they reached the
avenue of orange trees, where were statues holding flaming
torches, and when they got nearer to the palace they
saw that it was illuminated from the roof to the ground,
and music sounded softly from the courtyard. "The
Beast must be very hungry," said Beauty, trying to
laugh, "if he makes all this rejoicing over the arrival of
his prey."

But, in spite of her anxiety, she could not help admiring
all the wonderful things she saw.

The horse stopped at the foot of the flight of steps
leading to the terrace, and when they had dismounted her
father led her to the little room he had been in before,
where they found a splendid fire burning, and the table
daintily spread with a delicious supper.

The merchant knew that this was meant for them, and
Beauty, who was rather less frightened now that she had
passed through so many rooms and seen nothing of the
Beast, was quite willing to begin, for her long ride had
made her very hungry. But they had hardly finished
their meal when the noise of the Beast's footsteps was
heard approaching, and Beauty clung to her father in
terror, which became all the greater when she saw how
frightened he was. But when the Beast really appeared,
though she trembled at the sight of him, she made a great
effort to hide her terror, and saluted him respectfully.

This evidently pleased the Beast. After looking at her
he said, in a tone that might have struck terror into the
boldest heart, though he did not seem to be angry:

"Good-evening, old man. Good-evening, Beauty."

The merchant was too terrified to reply, but Beauty
answered sweetly: "Good-evening, Beast."

"Have you come willingly?" asked the Beast. "Will
you be content to stay here when your father goes away?"

Beauty answered bravely that she was quite prepared
to stay.

"I am pleased with you," said the Beast. "As you have
come of your own accord, you may stay. As for you, old
man," he added, turning to the merchant, "at sunrise
to-morrow you will take your departure. When the bell
rings get up quickly and eat your breakfast, and you will
find the same horse waiting to take you home; but remember
that you must never expect to see my palace again."

Then turning to Beauty, he said:

"Take your father into the next room, and help him to
choose everything you think your brothers and sisters
would like to have. You will find two traveling-trunks
there; fill them as full as you can. It is only just that you
should send them something very precious as a remembrance
of yourself."

Then he went away, after saying, "Good-by, Beauty;
good-by, old man"; and though Beauty was beginning to
think with great dismay of her father's departure, she was
afraid to disobey the Beast's orders; and they went into
the next room, which had shelves and cupboards all round
it. They were greatly surprised at the riches it contained.
There were splendid dresses fit for a queen, with all the
ornaments that were to be worn with them; and when
Beauty opened the cupboards she was quite dazzled by
the gorgeous jewels that lay in heaps upon every shelf.
After choosing a vast quantity, which she divided between
her sisters--for she had made a heap of the wonderful
dresses for each of them--she opened the last chest,
which was full of gold.

"I think, father," she said, "that, as the gold will be
more useful to you, we had better take out the other
things again, and fill the trunks with it." So they did
this; but the more they put in the more room there seemed
to be, and at last they put back all the jewels and dresses
they had taken out, and Beauty even added as many
more of the jewels as she could carry at once; and then
the trunks were not too full, but they were so heavy that
an elephant could not have carried them!

"The Beast was mocking us," cried the merchant; "he
must have pretended to give us all these things, knowing
that I could not carry them away."

"Let us wait and see," answered Beauty. "I cannot
believe that he meant to deceive us. All we can do is to
fasten them up and leave them ready."

So they did this and returned to the little room, where,
to their astonishment, they found breakfast ready. The
merchant ate his with a good appetite, as the Beast's
generosity made him believe that he might perhaps venture
to come back soon and see Beauty. But she felt sure
that her father was leaving her for ever, so she was very
sad when the bell rang sharply for the second time, and
warned them that the time had come for them to part.
They went down into the courtyard, where two horses
were waiting, one loaded with the two trunks, the other
for him to ride. They were pawing the ground in their
impatience to start, and the merchant was forced to bid
Beauty a hasty farewell; and as soon as he was mounted
he went off at such a pace that she lost sight of him in an
instant. Then Beauty began to cry, and wandered sadly
back to her own room. But she soon found that she was
very sleepy, and as she had nothing better to do she lay
down and instantly fell asleep. And then she dreamed
that she was walking by a brook bordered with trees, and
lamenting her sad fate, when a young prince, handsomer
than anyone she had ever seen, and with a voice that
went straight to her heart, came and said to her, "Ah,
Beauty! you are not so unfortunate as you suppose. Here
you will be rewarded for all you have suffered elsewhere.
Your every wish shall be gratified. Only try to find me
out, no matter how I may be disguised, as I love you
dearly, and in making me happy you will find your own
happiness. Be as true-hearted as you are beautiful, and
we shall have nothing left to wish for."

"What can I do, Prince, to make you happy?" said

"Only be grateful," he answered, "and do not trust too
much to your eyes. And, above all, do not desert me
until you have saved me from my cruel misery."

After this she thought she found herself in a room with
a stately and beautiful lady, who said to her:

"Dear Beauty, try not to regret all you have left
behind you, for you are destined to a better fate. Only do
not let yourself be deceived by appearances."

Beauty found her dreams so interesting that she was in
no hurry to awake, but presently the clock roused her by
calling her name softly twelve times, and then she got up
and found her dressing-table set out with everything she
could possibly want; and when her toilet was finished she
found dinner was waiting in the room next to hers. But
dinner does not take very long when you are all by yourself,
and very soon she sat down cosily in the corner of a
sofa, and began to think about the charming Prince she
had seen in her dream.

"He said I could make him happy," said Beauty to

"It seems, then, that this horrible Beast keeps him a
prisoner. How can I set him free? I wonder why they
both told me not to trust to appearances? I don't understand
it. But, after all, it was only a dream, so why
should I trouble myself about it? I had better go and
find something to do to amuse myself."

So she got up and began to explore some of the many
rooms of the palace.

The first she entered was lined with mirrors, and Beauty
saw herself reflected on every side, and thought she had
never seen such a charming room. Then a bracelet which
was hanging from a chandelier caught her eye, and on
taking it down she was greatly surprised to find that it
held a portrait of her unknown admirer, just as she had
seen him in her dream. With great delight she slipped
the bracelet on her arm, and went on into a gallery of
pictures, where she soon found a portrait of the same
handsome Prince, as large as life, and so well painted that
as she studied it he seemed to smile kindly at her. Tearing
herself away from the portrait at last, she passed through
into a room which contained every musical instrument
under the sun, and here she amused herself for a long
while in trying some of them, and singing until she was
tired. The next room was a library, and she saw everything
she had ever wanted to read, as well as everything
she had read, and it seemed to her that a whole lifetime
would not be enough to even read the names of the books,
there were so many. By this time it was growing dusk,
and wax candles in diamond and ruby candlesticks were
beginning to light themselves in every room.

Beauty found her supper served just at the time she
preferred to have it, but she did not see anyone or hear
a sound, and, though her father had warned her that she
would be alone, she began to find it rather dull.

But presently she heard the Beast coming, and wondered
tremblingly if he meant to eat her up now.

However, as he did not seem at all ferocious, and only
said gruffly:

"Good-evening, Beauty," she answered cheerfully and
managed to conceal her terror. Then the Beast asked her
how she had been amusing herself, and she told him all
the rooms she had seen.

Then he asked if she thought she could be happy in his
palace; and Beauty answered that everything was so
beautiful that she would be very hard to please if she
could not be happy. And after about an hour's talk
Beauty began to think that the Beast was not nearly so
terrible as she had supposed at first. Then he got up to
leave her, and said in his gruff voice:

"Do you love me, Beauty? Will you marry me?"

"Oh! what shall I say?" cried Beauty, for she was
afraid to make the Beast angry by refusing.

"Say 'yes' or 'no' without fear," he replied.

"Oh! no, Beast," said Beauty hastily.

"Since you will not, good-night, Beauty," he said.

And she answered, "Good-night, Beast," very glad to
find that her refusal had not provoked him. And after
he was gone she was very soon in bed and asleep, and
dreaming of her unknown Prince. She thought he came
and said to her:

"Ah, Beauty! why are you so unkind to me? I fear I
am fated to be unhappy for many a long day still."

And then her dreams changed, but the charming Prince
figured in them all; and when morning came her first
thought was to look at the portrait, and see if it was really
like him, and she found that it certainly was.

This morning she decided to amuse herself in the garden,
for the sun shone, and all the fountains were playing;
but she was astonished to find that every place was
familiar to her, and presently she came to the brook where
the myrtle trees were growing where she had first met the
Prince in her dream, and that made her think more than
ever that he must be kept a prisoner by the Beast. When
she was tired she went back to the palace, and found a
new room full of materials for every kind of work--ribbons
to make into bows, and silks to work into flowers.
Then there was an aviary full of rare birds, which were so
tame that they flew to Beauty as soon as they saw her,
and perched upon her shoulders and her head.

"Pretty little creatures," she said, "how I wish that
your cage was nearer to my room, that I might often hear
you sing!"

So saying she opened a door, and found, to her delight,
that it led into her own room, though she had thought it
was quite the other side of the palace.

There were more birds in a room farther on, parrots
and cockatoos that could talk, and they greeted Beauty
by name; indeed, she found them so entertaining that she
took one or two back to her room, and they talked to her
while she was at supper; after which the Beast paid her
his usual visit, and asked her the same questions as before,
and then with a gruff "good-night" he took his departure,
and Beauty went to bed to dream of her mysterious
Prince. The days passed swiftly in different
amusements, and after a while Beauty found out another
strange thing in the palace, which often pleased her when
she was tired of being alone. There was one room which
she had not noticed particularly; it was empty, except
that under each of the windows stood a very comfortable
chair; and the first time she had looked out of the window
it had seemed to her that a black curtain prevented her
from seeing anything outside. But the second time she
went into the room, happening to be tired, she sat down
in one of the chairs, when instantly the curtain was rolled
aside, and a most amusing pantomime was acted before
her; there were dances, and colored lights, and music, and
pretty dresses, and it was all so gay that Beauty was in
ecstacies. After that she tried the other seven windows
in turn, and there was some new and surprising entertainment
to be seen from each of them, so that Beauty never
could feel lonely any more. Every evening after supper
the Beast came to see her, and always before saying
good-night asked her in his terrible voice:

"Beauty, will you marry me?"

And it seemed to Beauty, now she understood him
better, that when she said, "No, Beast," he went away
quite sad. But her happy dreams of the handsome young
Prince soon made her forget the poor Beast, and the only
thing that at all disturbed her was to be constantly told
to distrust appearances, to let her heart guide her, and
not her eyes, and many other equally perplexing things,
which, consider as she would, she could not understand.

So everything went on for a long time, until at last,
happy as she was, Beauty began to long for the sight of
her father and her brothers and sisters; and one night,
seeing her look very sad, the Beast asked her what was
the matter. Beauty had quite ceased to be afraid of him.
Now she knew that he was really gentle in spite of his
ferocious looks and his dreadful voice. So she answered
that she was longing to see her home once more. Upon
hearing this the Beast seemed sadly distressed, and cried

"Ah! Beauty, have you the heart to desert an unhappy
Beast like this? What more do you want to make you
happy? Is it because you hate me that you want to

"No, dear Beast," answered Beauty softly, "I do not
hate you, and I should be very sorry never to see you any
more, but I long to see my father again. Only let me go
for two months, and I promise to come back to you and
stay for the rest of my life."

The Beast, who had been sighing dolefully while she
spoke, now replied:

"I cannot refuse you anything you ask, even though it
should cost me my life. Take the four boxes you will find
in the room next to your own, and fill them with everything
you wish to take with you. But remember your
promise and come back when the two months are over,
or you may have cause to repent it, for if you do not
come in good time you will find your faithful Beast dead.
You will not need any chariot to bring you back. Only
say good-by to all your brothers and sisters the night
before you come away, and when you have gone to bed
turn this ring round upon your finger and say firmly: 'I
wish to go back to my palace and see my Beast again.'
Good-night, Beauty. Fear nothing, sleep peacefully, and
before long you shall see your father once more."

As soon as Beauty was alone she hastened to fill the
boxes with all the rare and precious things she saw about
her, and only when she was tired of heaping things into
them did they seem to be full.

Then she went to bed, but could hardly sleep for joy.
And when at last she did begin to dream of her beloved
Prince she was grieved to see him stretched upon a grassy
bank, sad and weary, and hardly like himself.

"What is the matter?" she cried.

He looked at her reproachfully, and said:

"How can you ask me, cruel one? Are you not leaving
me to my death perhaps?"

"Ah! don't be so sorrowful," cried Beauty; "I am only
going to assure my father that I am safe and happy. I
have promised the Beast faithfully that I will come back,
and he would die of grief if I did not keep my word!"

"What would that matter to you?" said the Prince
"Surely you would not care?"

"Indeed, I should be ungrateful if I did not care for
such a kind Beast," cried Beauty indignantly. "I would
die to save him from pain. I assure you it is not his fault
that he is so ugly."

Just then a strange sound woke her--someone was
speaking not very far away; and opening her eyes she
found herself in a room she had never seen before, which
was certainly not nearly so splendid as those she was
used to in the Beast's palace. Where could she be? She
got up and dressed hastily, and then saw that the boxes
she had packed the night before were all in the room.
While she was wondering by what magic the Beast had
transported them and herself to this strange place she
suddenly heard her father's voice, and rushed out and
greeted him joyfully. Her brothers and sisters were all
astonished at her appearance, as they had never expected
to see her again, and there was no end to the questions
they asked her. She had also much to hear about what
had happened to them while she was away, and of her
father's journey home. But when they heard that she had
only come to be with them for a short time, and then
must go back to the Beast's palace for ever, they lamented
loudly. Then Beauty asked her father what he thought
could be the meaning of her strange dreams, and why the
Prince constantly begged her not to trust to appearances.
After much consideration, he answered: "You tell me
yourself that the Beast, frightful as he is, loves you dearly,
and deserves your love and gratitude for his gentleness
and kindness; I think the Prince must mean you to understand
that you ought to reward him by doing as he wishes
you to, in spite of his ugliness."

Beauty could not help seeing that this seemed very
probable; still, when she thought of her dear Prince who
was so handsome, she did not feel at all inclined to marry
the Beast. At any rate, for two months she need not
decide, but could enjoy herself with her sisters. But
though they were rich now, and lived in town again, and
had plenty of acquaintances, Beauty found that nothing
amused her very much; and she often thought of the
palace, where she was so happy, especially as at home she
never once dreamed of her dear Prince, and she felt quite
sad without him.

Then her sisters seemed to have got quite used to being
without her, and even found her rather in the way, so
she would not have been sorry when the two months
were over but for her father and brothers, who begged her
to stay, and seemed so grieved at the thought of her
departure that she had not the courage to say good-by to
them. Every day when she got up she meant to say it at
night, and when night came she put it off again, until at
last she had a dismal dream which helped her to make
up her mind. She thought she was wandering in a lonely
path in the palace gardens, when she heard groans which
seemed to come from some bushes hiding the entrance of
a cave, and running quickly to see what could be the
matter, she found the Beast stretched out upon his side,
apparently dying. He reproached her faintly with being
the cause of his distress, and at the same moment a
stately lady appeared, and said very gravely:

"Ah! Beauty, you are only just in time to save his life.
See what happens when people do not keep their promises!
If you had delayed one day more, you would have
found him dead."

Beauty was so terrified by this dream that the next
morning she announced her intention of going back at
once, and that very night she said good-by to her father
and all her brothers and sisters, and as soon as she was in
bed she turned her ring round upon her finger, and said
firmly, "I wish to go back to my palace and see my Beast
again," as she had been told to do.

Then she fell asleep instantly, and only woke up to hear
the clock saying "Beauty, Beauty" twelve times in its
musical voice, which told her at once that she was really
in the palace once more. Everything was just as before,
and her birds were so glad to see her! But Beauty thought
she had never known such a long day, for she was so
anxious to see the Beast again that she felt as if suppertime
would never come.

But when it did come and no Beast appeared she was
really frightened; so, after listening and waiting for a long
time, she ran down into the garden to search for him. Up
and down the paths and avenues ran poor Beauty, calling
him in vain, for no one answered, and not a trace of him
could she find; until at last, quite tired, she stopped for a
minute's rest, and saw that she was standing opposite the
shady path she had seen in her dream. She rushed down
it, and, sure enough, there was the cave, and in it lay the
Beast--asleep, as Beauty thought. Quite glad to have
found him, she ran up and stroked his head, but, to her
horror, he did not move or open his eyes.

"Oh! he is dead; and it is all my fault," said Beauty,
crying bitterly.

But then, looking at him again, she fancied he still
breathed, and, hastily fetching some water from the
nearest fountain, she sprinkled it over his face, and,
to her great delight, he began to revive.

"Oh! Beast, how you frightened me!" she cried. "I
never knew how much I loved you until just now, when
I feared I was too late to save your life."

"Can you really love such an ugly creature as I am?"
said the Beast faintly. "Ah! Beauty, you only came just
in time. I was dying because I thought you had forgotten
your promise. But go back now and rest, I shall see you
again by and by."

Beauty, who had half expected that he would be angry
with her, was reassured by his gentle voice, and went
back to the palace, where supper was awaiting her; and
afterward the Beast came in as usual, and talked about
the time she had spent with her father, asking if she had
enjoyed herself, and if they had all been very glad to see

Beauty answered politely, and quite enjoyed telling
him all that had happened to her. And when at last the
time came for him to go, and he asked, as he had so often
asked before, "Beauty, will you marry me?"

She answered softly, "Yes, dear Beast."

As she spoke a blaze of light sprang up before the
windows of the palace; fireworks crackled and guns
banged, and across the avenue of orange trees, in letters
all made of fire-flies, was written: "Long live the Prince
and his Bride."

Turning to ask the Beast what it could all mean,
Beauty found that he had disappeared, and in his place
stood her long-loved Prince! At the same moment the
wheels of a chariot were heard upon the terrace, and two
ladies entered the room. One of them Beauty recognized
as the stately lady she had seen in her dreams; the other
was also so grand and queenly that Beauty hardly knew
which to greet first.

But the one she already knew said to her companion:

"Well, Queen, this is Beauty, who has had the courage
to rescue your son from the terrible enchantment. They
love one another, and only your consent to their marriage
is wanting to make them perfectly happy."

"I consent with all my heart," cried the Queen. "How
can I ever thank you enough, charming girl, for having
restored my dear son to his natural form?"

And then she tenderly embraced Beauty and the
Prince, who had meanwhile been greeting the Fairy and
receiving her congratulations.

"Now," said the Fairy to Beauty, "I suppose you would
like me to send for all your brothers and sisters to dance
at your wedding?"

And so she did, and the marriage was celebrated the
very next day with the utmost splendor, and Beauty and
the Prince lived happily ever after.[1]

[1] La Belle et la Bete. Par Madame de Villeneuve.


Once upon a time there was a king who had many sons.
I do not exactly know how many there were, but the
youngest of them could not stay quietly at home, and was
determined to go out into the world and try his luck, and
after a long time the King was forced to give him leave
to go. When he had traveled about for several days, he
came to a giant's house, and hired himself to the giant as
a servant. In the morning the giant had to go out to
pasture his goats, and as he was leaving the house he told
the King's son that he must clean out the stable. "And
after you have done that," he said, "you need not do any
more work to-day, for you have come to a kind master,
and that you shall find. But what I set you to do must
be done both well and thoroughly, and you must on no
account go into any of the rooms which lead out of the
room in which you slept last night. If you do, I will take
your life."

"Well to be sure, he is an easy master!" said the Prince
to himself as he walked up and down the room humming
and singing, for he thought there would be plenty of time
left to clean out the stable; "but it would be amusing to
steal a glance into his other rooms as well," thought the
Prince, "for there must be something that he is afraid of
my seeing, as I am not allowed to enter them." So he
went into the first room. A cauldron was hanging from
the walls; it was boiling, but the Prince could see no fire
under it. "I wonder what is inside it," he thought, and
dipped a lock of his hair in, and the hair became just as
if it were all made of copper. "That's a nice kind of soup.
If anyone were to taste that his throat would be gilded,"
said the youth, and then he went into the next chamber.
There, too, a cauldron was hanging from the wall, bubbling
and boiling, but there was no fire under this either.
"I will just try what this is like too," said the Prince,
thrusting another lock of his hair into it, and it came out
silvered over. "Such costly soup is not to be had in my
father's palace," said the Prince; "but everything depends
on how it tastes," and then he went into the third room.
There, too, a cauldron was hanging from the wall, boiling,
exactly the same as in the two other rooms, and the
Prince took pleasure in trying this also, so he dipped a
lock of hair in, and it came out so brightly gilded that it
shone again. "Some talk about going from bad to worse,"
said the Prince; "but this is better and better. If he boils
gold here, what can he boil in there?" He was determined
to see, and went through the door into the fourth room.
No cauldron was to be seen there, but on a bench someone
was seated who was like a king's daughter, but, whosoever
she was, she was so beautiful that never in the
Prince's life had he seen her equal.

"Oh! in heaven's name what are you doing here?" said
she who sat upon the bench.

"I took the place of servant here yesterday," said the

"May you soon have a better place, if you have come
to serve here!" said she.

"Oh, but I think I have got a kind master," said the
Prince. "He has not given me hard work to do to-day.
When I have cleaned out the stable I shall be done."

"Yes, but how will you be able to do that?" she asked
again. "If you clean it out as other people do, ten
pitchforksful will come in for every one you throw out. But
I will teach you how to do it; you must turn your pitchfork
upside down, and work with the handle, and then all will
fly out of its own accord."

"Yes, I will attend to that," said the Prince, and stayed
sitting where he was the whole day, for it was soon settled
between them that they would marry each other, he and
the King's daughter; so the first day of his service with
the giant did not seem long to him. But when evening
was drawing near she said that it would now be better for
him to clean out the stable before the giant came home.
When he got there he had a fancy to try if what she had
said were true, so he began to work in the same way that
he had seen the stable-boys doing in his father's stables,
but he soon saw that he must give up that, for when he
had worked a very short time he had scarcely any room
left to stand. So he did what the Princess had taught
him, turned the pitchfork round, and worked with the
handle, and in the twinkling of an eye the stable was as
clean as if it had been scoured. When he had done that,
he went back again into the room in which the giant had
given him leave to stay, and there he walked backward
and forward on the floor, and began to hum and sing.

Then came the giant home with the goats. "Have you
cleaned the stable?" asked the giant.

"Yes, now it is clean and sweet, master," said the King's

"I shall see about that," said the giant, and went round
to the stable, but it was just as the Prince had said.

"You have certainly been talking to my Master-maid,
for you never got that out of your own head," said the

"Master-maid! What kind of a thing is that, master?"
said the Prince, making himself look as stupid as an ass;
"I should like to see that."

"Well, you will see her quite soon enough," said the

On the second morning the giant had again to go out
with his goats, so he told the Prince that on that day he
was to fetch home his horse, which was out on the
mountain-side, and when he had done that he might rest
himself for the remainder of the day, "for you have come
to a kind master, and that you shall find," said the giant
once more. "But do not go into any of the rooms that I
spoke of yesterday, or I will wring your head off," said
he, and then went away with his flock of goats.

"Yes, indeed, you are a kind master," said the Prince;
"but I will go in and talk to the Master-maid again;
perhaps before long she may like better to be mine than

So he went to her. Then she asked him what he had to
do that day.

"Oh! not very dangerous work, I fancy," said the King's
son. "I have only to go up the mountain-side after his

"Well, how do you mean to set about it?" asked the

"Oh! there is no great art in riding a horse home," said
the King's son. "I think I must have ridden friskier
horses before now."

"Yes, but it is not so easy a thing as you think to ride
the horse home," said the Master-maid; "but I will teach
you what to do. When you go near it, fire will burst out
of its nostrils like flames from a pine torch; but be very
careful, and take the bridle which is hanging by the door
there, and fling the bit straight into his jaws, and then it
will become so tame that you will be able to do what you
like with it." He said he would bear this in mind, and
then he again sat in there the whole day by the Master-maid,
and they chatted and talked of one thing and
another, but the first thing and the last now was, how
happy and delightful it would be if they could but marry
each other, and get safely away from the giant; and the
Prince would have forgotten both the mountain-side and
the horse if the Master-maid had not reminded him of
them as evening drew near, and said that now it would be
better if he went to fetch the horse before the giant came.
So he did this, and took the bridle which was hanging on
a crook, and strode up the mountain-side, and it was not
long before he met with the horse, and fire and red flames
streamed forth out of its nostrils. But the youth carefully
watched his opportunity, and just as it was rushing
at him with open jaws he threw the bit straight into its
mouth, and the horse stood as quiet as a young lamb, and
there was no difficulty at all in getting it home to the
stable. Then the Prince went back into his room again,
and began to hum and to sing.

Toward evening the giant came home. "Have you
fetched the horse back from the mountain-side?" he

"That I have, master; it was an amusing horse to ride,
but I rode him straight home, and put him in the stable
too," said the Prince.

"I will see about that," said the giant, and went out to
the stable, but the horse was standing there just as the
Prince had said. "You have certainly been talking with
my Master-maid, for you never got that out of your own
head," said the giant again.

"Yesterday, master, you talked about this Master-maid,
and to-day you are talking about her; ah, heaven
bless you, master, why will you not show me the thing?
for it would be a real pleasure to me to see it," said the
Prince, who again pretended to be silly and stupid.

"Oh! you will see her quite soon enough," said the

On the morning of the third day the giant again had to
go into the wood with the goats. "To-day you must go
underground and fetch my taxes," he said to the Prince.
"When you have done this, you may rest for the remainder
of the day, for you shall see what an easy master you
have come to," and then he went away.

"Well, however easy a master you may be, you set me
very hard work to do," thought the Prince; "but I will
see if I cannot find your Master-maid; you say she is
yours, but for all that she may be able to tell me what to
do now," and he went back to her. So, when the Master-maid
asked him what the giant had set him to do that
day, he told her that he was to go underground and get
the taxes.

"And how will you set about that?" said the Master-maid.

"Oh! you must tell me how to do it," said the Prince,
"for I have never yet been underground, and even if I
knew the way I do not know how much I am to demand."

"Oh! yes, I will soon tell you that; you must go to the
rock there under the mountain-ridge, and take the club
that is there, and knock on the rocky wall," said the
Master-maid. "Then someone will come out who will
sparkle with fire; you shall tell him your errand, and
when he asks you how much you want to have you are to
say: 'As much as I can carry.'"

"Yes, I will keep that in mind," said he, and then he
sat there with the Master-maid the whole day, until night
drew near, and he would gladly have stayed there till
now if the Master-maid had not reminded him that it was
time to be off to fetch the taxes before the giant came.

So he set out on his way, and did exactly what the
Master-maid had told him. He went to the rocky wall,
and took the club, and knocked on it. Then came one so
full of sparks that they flew both out of his eyes and his
nose. "What do you want?" said he.

"I was to come here for the giant, and demand the tax
for him," said the King's son.

"How much are you to have then?" said the other.

"I ask for no more than I am able to carry with me,"
said the Prince.

"It is well for you that you have not asked for a horse-load,"
said he who had come out of the rock. "But now
come in with me."

This the Prince did, and what a quantity of gold and
silver he saw! It was lying inside the mountain like heaps
of stones in a waste place, and he got a load that was as
large as he was able to carry, and with that he went his
way. So in the evening, when the giant came home with
the goats, the Prince went into the chamber and hummed
and sang again as he had done on the other two evenings.

"Have you been for the tax?" said the giant.

"Yes, that I have, master," said the Prince.

"Where have you put it then?" said the giant again.

"The bag of gold is standing there on the bench," said
the Prince.

"I will see about that," said the giant, and went away
to the bench, but the bag was standing there, and it was
so full that gold and silver dropped out when the giant
untied the string.

"You have certainly been talking with my Master-maid!"
said the giant, "and if you have I will wring your neck."

"Master-maid?" said the Prince; "yesterday my master
talked about this Master-maid, and to-day he is talking
about her again, and the first day of all it was talk of the
same kind. I do wish I could see the thing myself,"
said he.

"Yes, yes, wait till to-morrow," said the giant, "and
then I myself will take you to her."

"Ah! master, I thank you--but you are only mocking
me," said the King's son.

Next day the giant took him to the Master-maid.
"Now you shall kill him, and boil him in the great big
cauldron you know of, and when you have got the broth
ready give me a call," said the giant; then he lay down on
the bench to sleep, and almost immediately began to
snore so that it sounded like thunder among the hills.

So the Master-maid took a knife, and cut the Prince's
little finger, and dropped three drops of blood upon a
wooden stool; then she took all the old rags, and shoe-soles,
and all the rubbish she could lay hands on, and put
them in the cauldron; and then she filled a chest with gold
dust, and a lump of salt, and a water-flask which was
hanging by the door, and she also took with her a golden
apple, and two gold chickens; and then she and the Prince
went away with all the speed they could, and when they
had gone a little way they came to the sea, and then they
sailed, but where they got the ship from I have never been
able to learn.

Now, when the giant had slept a good long time, he
began to stretch himself on the bench on which he was
lying. "Will it soon boil?" said he.

"It is just beginning," said the first drop of blood on the

So the giant lay down to sleep again, and slept for a
long, long time. Then he began to move about a little
again. "Will it soon be ready now?" said he, but he did
not look up this time any more than he had done the first
time, for he was still half asleep.

"Half done!" said the second drop of blood, and the
giant believed it was the Master-maid again, and turned
himself on the bench, and lay down to sleep once more.
When he had slept again for many hours, he began to
move and stretch himself. "Is it not done yet?" said he.

"It is quite ready," said the third drop of blood. Then
the giant began to sit up and rub his eyes, but he could
not see who it was who had spoken to him, so he asked
for the Master-maid, and called her. But there was no
one to give him an answer.

"Ah! well, she has just stolen out for a little," thought
the giant, and he took a spoon, and went off to the
cauldron to have a taste; but there was nothing in it but
shoe-soles, and rags, and such trumpery as that, and all
was boiled up together, so that he could not tell whether
it was porridge or milk pottage. When he saw this, he
understood what had happened, and fell into such a rage
that he hardly knew what he was doing. Away he went
after the Prince and the Master-maid so fast that the
wind whistled behind him, and it was not long before he
came to the water, but he could not get over it. "Well,
well, I will soon find a cure for that; I have only to call my
river-sucker," said the giant, and he did call him. So his
river-sucker came and lay down, and drank one, two,
three draughts, and with that the water in the sea fell so
low that the giant saw the Master-maid and the Prince
out on the sea in their ship. "Now you must throw out
the lump of salt," said the Master-maid, and the Prince
did so, and it grew up into such a great high mountain
right across the sea that the giant could not come over
it, and the river-sucker could not drink any more water.
"Well, well, I will soon find a cure for that," said the
giant, so he called to his hill-borer to come and bore
through the mountain so that the river-sucker might be
able to drink up the water again. But just as the hole
was made, and the river-sucker was beginning to drink,
the Master-maid told the Prince to throw one or two
drops out of the flask, and when he did this the sea
instantly became full of water again, and before the
river-sucker could take one drink they reached the land and
were in safety. So they determined to go home to the
Prince's father, but the Prince would on no account
permit the Master-maid to walk there, for he thought that
it was unbecoming either for her or for him to go on foot.

"Wait here the least little bit of time, while I go home
for the seven horses which stand in my father's stable,"
said he; "it is not far off, and I shall not be long away,
but I will not let my betrothed bride go on foot to the

"Oh! no, do not go, for if you go home to the King's
palace you will forget me, I foresee that."

"How could I forget you? We have suffered so much
evil together, and love each other so much," said the
Prince; and he insisted on going home for the coach with
the seven horses, and she was to wait for him there, by
the sea-shore. So at last the Master-maid had to yield,
for he was so absolutely determined to do it. "But when
you get there you must not even give yourself time to
greet anyone, but go straight into the stable, and take the
horses, and put them in the coach, and drive back as
quickly as you can. For they will all come round about
you; but you must behave just as if you did not see them,
and on no account must you taste anything, for if you
do it will cause great misery both to you and to me," said
she; and this he promised.

But when he got home to the King's palace one of his
brothers was just going to be married, and the bride and
all her kith and kin had come to the palace; so they all
thronged round him, and questioned him about this and
that, and wanted him to go in with them; but he behaved
as if he did not see them, and went straight to the stable,
and got out the horses and began to harness them. When
they saw that they could not by any means prevail on
him to go in with them, they came out to him with meat
and drink, and the best of everything that they had
prepared for the wedding; but the Prince refused to touch
anything, and would do nothing but put the horses in as
quickly as he could. At last, however, the bride's sister
rolled an apple across the yard to him, and said: "As you
won't eat anything else, you may like to take a bite of
that, for you must be both hungry and thirsty after your
long journey." And he took up the apple and bit a piece
out of it. But no sooner had he got the piece of apple in
his mouth than he forgot the Master-maid and that he
was to go back in the coach to fetch her.

"I think I must be mad! what do I want with this
coach and horses?" said he; and then he put the horses
back into the stable, and went into the King's palace, and
there it was settled that he should marry the bride's
sister, who had rolled the apple to him.

The Master-maid sat by the sea-shore for a long, long
time, waiting for the Prince, but no Prince came. So she
went away, and when she had walked a short distance she
came to a little hut which stood all alone in a small wood,
hard by the King's palace. She entered it and asked if she
might be allowed to stay there. The hut belonged to an
old crone, who was also an ill-tempered and malicious
troll. At first she would not let the Master-maid remain
with her; but at last, after a long time, by means of good
words and good payment, she obtained leave. But the
hut was as dirty and black inside as a pigsty, so the
Master-maid said that she would smarten it up a little,
that it might look a little more like what other people's
houses looked inside. The old crone did not like this
either. She scowled, and was very cross, but the Master-maid
did not trouble herself about that. She took out her
chest of gold, and flung a handful of it or so into the fire,
and the gold boiled up and poured out over the whole of
the hut, until every part of it both inside and out was
gilded. But when the gold began to bubble up the old hag
grew so terrified that she fled as if the Evil One himself
were pursuing her, and she did not remember to stoop
down as she went through the doorway, and so she split
her head and died. Next morning the sheriff came traveling
by there. He was greatly astonished when he saw the
gold hut shining and glittering there in the copse, and he
was still more astonished when he went in and caught
sight of the beautiful young maiden who was sitting there;
he fell in love with her at once, and straightway on the
spot he begged her, both prettily and kindly, to marry

"Well, but have you a great deal of money?" said the

"Oh! yes; so far as that is concerned, I am not ill off,"
said the sheriff. So now he had to go home to get the
money, and in the evening he came back, bringing with
him a bag with two bushels in it, which he set down on
the bench. Well, as he had such a fine lot of money, the
Master-maid said she would have him, so they sat down
to talk.

But scarcely had they sat down together before the
Master-maid wanted to jump up again. "I have forgotten
to see to the fire," she said.

"Why should you jump up to do that?" said the sheriff;
"I will do that!" So he jumped up, and went to the chimney
in one bound.

"Just tell me when you have got hold of the shovel,"
said the Master-maid.

"Well, I have hold of it now," said the sheriff.

"Then you may hold the shovel, and the shovel you,
and pour red-hot coals over you, till day dawns," said the
Master-maid. So the sheriff had to stand there the whole
night and pour red-hot coals over himself, and, no matter
how much he cried and begged and entreated, the red-hot
coals did not grow the colder for that. When the day
began to dawn, and he had power to throw down the
shovel, he did not stay long where he was, but ran away
as fast as he possibly could; and everyone who met him
stared and looked after him, for he was flying as if he
were mad, and he could not have looked worse if he had
been both flayed and tanned, and everyone wondered
where he had been, but for very shame he would tell

The next day the attorney came riding by the place
where the Master-maid dwelt. He saw how brightly the
hut shone and gleamed through the wood, and he too
went into it to see who lived there, and when he entered
and saw the beautiful young maiden he fell even more in
love with her than the sheriff had done, and began to woo
her at once. So the Master-maid asked him, as she had
asked the sheriff, if he had a great deal of money, and the
attorney said he was not ill off for that, and would at once
go home to get it; and at night he came with a great big
sack of money--this time it was a four-bushel sack--and
set it on the bench by the Master-maid. So she promised
to have him, and he sat down on the bench by her to
arrange about it, but suddenly she said that she had
forgotten to lock the door of the porch that night, and must
do it.

"Why should you do that?" said the attorney; "sit still,
I will do it."

So he was on his feet in a moment, and out in the porch.

"Tell me when you have got hold of the door-latch,"
said the Master-maid.

"I have hold of it now," cried the attorney.

"Then you may hold the door, and the door you, and
may you go between wall and wall till day dawns."

What a dance the attorney had that night! He had
never had such a waltz before, and he never wished to
have such a dance again. Sometimes he was in front of
the door, and sometimes the door was in front of him, and
it went from one side of the porch to the other, till the
attorney was well-nigh beaten to death. At first he began
to abuse the Master-maid, and then to beg and pray, but
the door did not care for anything but keeping him where
he was till break of day.

As soon as the door let go its hold of him, off went the
attorney. He forgot who ought to be paid off for what
he had suffered, he forgot both his sack of money and his
wooing, for he was so afraid lest the house-door should
come dancing after him. Everyone who met him stared
and looked after him, for he was flying like a madman,
and he could not have looked worse if a herd of rams had
been butting at him all night long.

On the third day the bailiff came by, and he too saw
the gold house in the little wood, and he too felt that he
must go and see who lived there; and when he caught
sight of the Master-maid he became so much in love with
her that he wooed her almost before he greeted her.

The Master-maid answered him as she had answered
the other two, that if he had a great deal of money, she
would have him. "So far as that is concerned, I am not ill
off," said the bailiff; so he was at once told to go home and
fetch it, and this he did. At night he came back, and he
had a still larger sack of money with him than the
attorney had brought; it must have been at least six
bushels, and he set it down on the bench. So it was
settled that he was to have the Master-maid. But hardly
had they sat down together before she said that she had
forgotten to bring in the calf, and must go out to put it
in the byre.

"No, indeed, you shall not do that," said the bailiff; "I
am the one to do that." And, big and fat as he was, he
went out as briskly as a boy.

"Tell me when you have got hold of the calf's tail,"
said the Master-maid.

"I have hold of it now," cried the bailiff.

"Then may you hold the calf's tail, and the calf's tail
hold you, and may you go round the world together till
day dawns!" said the Master-maid. So the bailiff had to
bestir himself, for the calf went over rough and smooth,
over hill and dale, and, the more the bailiff cried and
screamed, the faster the calf went. When daylight began
to appear, the bailiff was half dead; and so glad was he to
leave loose of the calf's tail, that he forgot the sack of
money and all else. He walked now slowly--more slowly
than the sheriff and the attorney had done, but, the
slower he went, the more time had everyone to stare and
look at him; and they used it too, and no one can imagine
how tired out and ragged he looked after his dance with
the calf.

On the following day the wedding was to take place in
the King's palace, and the elder brother was to drive to
church with his bride, and the brother who had been with
the giant with her sister. But when they had seated
themselves in the coach and were about to drive off from
the palace one of the trace-pins broke, and, though they
made one, two, and three to put in its place, that did not
help them, for each broke in turn, no matter what kind
of wood they used to make them of. This went on for a
long time, and they could not get away from the palace,
so they were all in great trouble. Then the sheriff said
(for he too had been bidden to the wedding at Court):
"Yonder away in the thicket dwells a maiden, and if you
can get her to lend you the handle of the shovel that she
uses to make up her fire I know very well that it will hold
fast." So they sent off a messenger to the thicket, and
begged so prettily that they might have the loan of her
shovel-handle of which the sheriff had spoken that they
were not refused; so now they had a trace-pin which
would not snap in two.

But all at once, just as they were starting, the bottom
of the coach fell in pieces. They made a new bottom as
fast as they could, but, no matter how they nailed it
together, or what kind of wood they used, no sooner had
they got the new bottom into the coach and were about
to drive off than it broke again, so that they were still
worse off than when they had broken the trace-pin. Then
the attorney said, for he too was at the wedding in the
palace: "Away there in the thicket dwells a maiden, and
if you could but get her to lend you one-half of her
porch-door I am certain that it will hold together." So they
again sent a messenger to the thicket, and begged so
prettily for the loan of the gilded porch-door of which the
attorney had told them that they got it at once. They
were just setting out again, but now the horses were not
able to draw the coach. They had six horses already, and
now they put in eight, and then ten, and then twelve, but
the more they put in, and the more the coachman whipped
them, the less good it did; and the coach never stirred
from the spot. It was already beginning to be late in the
day, and to church they must and would go, so everyone
who was in the palace was in a state of distress. Then the
bailiff spoke up and said: "Out there in the gilded cottage
in the thicket dwells a girl, and if you could but get her
to lend you her calf I know it could draw the coach, even
if it were as heavy as a mountain." They all thought
that it was ridiculous to be drawn to church by a calf,
but there was nothing else for it but to send a messenger
once more, and beg as prettily as they could, on behalf of
the King, that she would let them have the loan of the
calf that the bailiff had told them about. The Master-maid
let them have it immediately--this time also she
would not say "no."

Then they harnessed the calf to see if the coach would
move; and away it went, over rough and smooth, over
stock and stone, so that they could scarcely breathe, and
sometimes they were on the ground, and sometimes up in
the air; and when they came to the church the coach began
to go round and round like a spinning-wheel, and it
was with the utmost difficulty and danger that they were
able to get out of the coach and into the church. And
when they went back again the coach went quicker still,
so that most of them did not know how they got back to
the palace at all.

When they had seated themselves at the table the
Prince who had been in service with the giant said that
he thought they ought to have invited the maiden who
had lent them the shovel-handle, and the porch-door, and
the calf up to the palace, "for," said he, "if we had not got
these three things, we should never have got away from
the palace."

The King also thought that this was both just and
proper, so he sent five of his best men down to the gilded
hut, to greet the maiden courteously from the King, and
to beg her to be so good as to come up to the palace to
dinner at mid-day.

"Greet the King, and tell him that, if he is too good to
come to me, I am too good to come to him," replied the

So the King had to go himself, and the Master-maid
went with him immediately, and, as the King believed
that she was more than she appeared to be, he seated her
in the place of honor by the youngest bridegroom. When
they had sat at the table for a short time, the Master-maid
took out the cock, and the hen, and the golden
apple which she had brought away with her from the
giant's house, and set them on the table in front of her,
and instantly the cock and the hen began to fight with
each other for the golden apple.

"Oh! look how those two there are fighting for the
golden apple," said the King's son.

"Yes, and so did we two fight to get out that time when
we were in the mountain," said the Master-maid.

So the Prince knew her again, and you may imagine
how delighted he was. He ordered the troll-witch who had
rolled the apple to him to be torn in pieces between
four-and-twenty horses, so that not a bit of her was left,
and then for the first time they began really to keep the
wedding, and, weary as they were, the sheriff, the attorney,
and the bailiff kept it up too.[1]

[1] Asbjornsen and Moe.


Once upon a time, long, long ago, there were two
brothers, the one rich and the other poor. When Christmas
Eve came, the poor one had not a bite in the house,
either of meat or bread; so he went to his brother, and
begged him, in God's name, to give him something for
Christmas Day. It was by no means the first time that
the brother had been forced to give something to him, and
he was not better pleased at being asked now than he
generally was.

"If you will do what I ask you, you shall have a whole
ham," said he. The poor one immediately thanked him,
and promised this.

"Well, here is the ham, and now you must go straight
to Dead Man's Hall," said the rich brother, throwing the
ham to him.

"Well, I will do what I have promised," said the other,
and he took the ham and set off. He went on and on for
the livelong day, and at nightfall he came to a place where
there was a bright light.

"I have no doubt this is the place," thought the man
with the ham.

An old man with a long white beard was standing in the
outhouse, chopping Yule logs.

"Good-evening," said the man with the ham.

"Good-evening to you. Where are you going at this
late hour?" said the man.

"I am going to Dead Man's Hall, if only I am on the
right track," answered the poor man.

"Oh! yes, you are right enough, for it is here," said the
old man. "When you get inside they will all want to buy
your ham, for they don't get much meat to eat there; but
you must not sell it unless you can get the hand-mill
which stands behind the door for it. When you come out
again I will teach you how to stop the hand-mill, which
is useful for almost everything."

So the man with the ham thanked the other for his
good advice, and rapped at the door.

When he got in, everything happened just as the old
man had said it would: all the people, great and small,
came round him like ants on an ant-hill, and each tried
to outbid the other for the ham.

"By rights my old woman and I ought to have it for
our Christmas dinner, but, since you have set your hearts
upon it, I must just give it up to you," said the man.
"But, if I sell it, I will have the hand-mill which is standing
there behind the door."

At first they would not hear to this, and haggled and
bargained with the man, but he stuck to what he had said,
and the people were forced to give him the hand-mill.
When the man came out again into the yard, he asked the
old wood-cutter how he was to stop the hand-mill, and
when he had learned that, he thanked him and set off
home with all the speed he could, but did not get there
until after the clock had struck twelve on Christmas Eve.

"Where in the world have you been?" said the old
woman. "Here I have sat waiting hour after hour, and have
not even two sticks to lay across each other under the
Christmas porridge-pot."

"Oh! I could not come before; I had something of
importance to see about, and a long way to go, too; but now
you shall just see!" said the man, and then he set the
hand-mill on the table, and bade it first grind light, then
a table-cloth, and then meat, and beer, and everything
else that was good for a Christmas Eve's supper; and the
mill ground all that he ordered. "Bless me!" said the old
woman as one thing after another appeared; and she
wanted to know where her husband had got the mill
from, but he would not tell her that.

"Never mind where I got it; you can see that it is a
good one, and the water that turns it will never freeze,"
said the man. So he ground meat and drink, and all kinds
of good things, to last all Christmas-tide, and on the
third day he invited all his friends to come to a feast.

Now when the rich brother saw all that there was at the
banquet and in the house, he was both vexed and angry,
for he grudged everything his brother had. "On Christmas
Eve he was so poor that he came to me and begged
for a trifle, for God's sake, and now he gives a feast as if
he were both a count and a king!" thought he. "But, for
heaven's sake, tell me where you got your riches from,"
said he to his brother.

"From behind the door," said he who owned the mill,
for he did not choose to satisfy his brother on that point;
but later in the evening, when he had taken a drop too
much, he could not refrain from telling how he had come
by the hand-mill. "There you see what has brought me
all my wealth!" said he, and brought out the mill, and
made it grind first one thing and then another. When the
brother saw that, he insisted on having the mill, and after
a great deal of persuasion got it; but he had to give three
hundred dollars for it, and the poor brother was to keep
it till the haymaking was over, for he thought: "If I keep
it as long as that, I can make it grind meat and drink that
will last many a long year." During that time you may
imagine that the mill did not grow rusty, and when hay-harvest
came the rich brother got it, but the other had taken
good care not to teach him how to stop it. It was evening
when the rich man got the mill home, and in the morning
he bade the old woman go out and spread the hay after
the mowers, and he would attend to the house himself
that day, he said.

So, when dinner-time drew near, he set the mill on the
kitchen-table, and said: "Grind herrings and milk pottage,
and do it both quickly and well."

So the mill began to grind herrings and milk pottage,
and first all the dishes and tubs were filled, and then it
came out all over the kitchen-floor. The man twisted and
turned it, and did all he could to make the mill stop, but,
howsoever he turned it and screwed it, the mill went on
grinding, and in a short time the pottage rose so high that
the man was like to be drowned. So he threw open the
parlor door, but it was not long before the mill had ground
the parlor full too, and it was with difficulty and danger
that the man could go through the stream of pottage and
get hold of the door-latch. When he got the door open,
he did not stay long in the room, but ran out, and the
herrings and pottage came after him, and it streamed out
over both farm and field. Now the old woman, who was
out spreading the hay, began to think dinner was long in
coming, and said to the women and the mowers: "Though
the master does not call us home, we may as well go. It
may be that he finds he is not good at making pottage
and I should do well to help him." So they began to
straggle homeward, but when they had got a little way
up the hill they met the herrings and pottage and bread,
all pouring forth and winding about one over the other,
and the man himself in front of the flood. "Would to
heaven that each of you had a hundred stomachs! Take
care that you are not drowned in the pottage!" he cried
as he went by them as if Mischief were at his heels, down
to where his brother dwelt. Then he begged him, for
God's sake, to take the mill back again, and that in an
instant, for, said he: "If it grind one hour more the
whole district will be destroyed by herrings and pottage."
But the brother would not take it until the other paid
him three hundred dollars, and that he was obliged to do.
Now the poor brother had both the money and the mill
again. So it was not long before he had a farmhouse much
finer than that in which his brother lived, but the mill
ground him so much money that he covered it with plates
of gold; and the farmhouse lay close by the sea-shore, so
it shone and glittered far out to sea. Everyone who sailed
by there now had to be put in to visit the rich man in the
gold farmhouse, and everyone wanted to see the wonderful
mill, for the report of it spread far and wide, and there
was no one who had not heard tell of it.

After a long, long time came also a skipper who wished
to see the mill. He asked if it could make salt. "Yes, it
could make salt," said he who owned it, and when the
skipper heard that, he wished with all his might and main
to have the mill, let it cost what it might, for, he thought,
if he had it, he would get off having to sail far away over
the perilous sea for freights of salt. At first the man
would not hear of parting with it, but the skipper begged
and prayed, and at last the man sold it to him, and got
many, many thousand dollars for it. When the skipper
had got the mill on his back he did not stay there long,
for he was so afraid that the man would change his mind,
and he had no time to ask how he was to stop it grinding,
but got on board his ship as fast as he could.

When he had gone a little way out to sea he took the
mill on deck. "Grind salt, and grind both quickly and
well," said the skipper. So the mill began to grind salt,
till it spouted out like water, and when the skipper had
got the ship filled he wanted to stop the mill, but
whichsoever way he turned it, and how much soever he tried,
it went on grinding, and the heap of salt grew higher and
higher, until at last the ship sank. There lies the mill at
the bottom of the sea, and still, day by day, it grinds on;
and that is why the sea is salt.[1]

[1] Asbjornsen and Moe.


There was a miller who left no more estate to the three
sons he had than his mill, his ass, and his cat. The
partition was soon made. Neither scrivener nor attorney
was sent for. They would soon have eaten up all the poor
patrimony. The eldest had the mill, the second the ass,
and the youngest nothing but the cat. The poor young
fellow was quite comfortless at having so poor a lot.

"My brothers," said he, "may get their living
handsomely enough by joining their stocks together; but for
my part, when I have eaten up my cat, and made me a
muff of his skin, I must die of hunger."

The Cat, who heard all this, but made as if he did not,
said to him with a grave and serious air:

"Do not thus afflict yourself, my good master. You
have nothing else to do but to give me a bag and get a
pair of boots made for me that I may scamper through
the dirt and the brambles, and you shall see that you
have not so bad a portion in me as you imagine."

The Cat's master did not build very much upon what
he said. He had often seen him play a great many cunning
tricks to catch rats and mice, as when he used to
hang by the heels, or hide himself in the meal, and make
as if he were dead; so that he did not altogether despair
of his affording him some help in his miserable condition.
When the Cat had what he asked for he booted himself
very gallantly, and putting his bag about his neck, he held
the strings of it in his two forepaws and went into a
warren where was great abundance of rabbits. He put
bran and sow-thistle into his bag, and stretching out at
length, as if he had been dead, he waited for some young
rabbits, not yet acquainted with the deceits of the world,
to come and rummage his bag for what he had put into it.

Scarce was he lain down but he had what he wanted.
A rash and foolish young rabbit jumped into his bag, and
Monsieur Puss, immediately drawing close the strings,
took and killed him without pity. Proud of his prey, he
went with it to the palace and asked to speak with his
majesty. He was shown upstairs into the King's apartment,
and, making a low reverence, said to him:

"I have brought you, sir, a rabbit of the warren, which
my noble lord the Marquis of Carabas" (for that was the
title which puss was pleased to give his master) "has
commanded me to present to your majesty from him."

"Tell thy master," said the king, "that I thank him and
that he does me a great deal of pleasure."

Another time he went and hid himself among some
standing corn, holding still his bag open, and when a
brace of partridges ran into it he drew the strings and so
caught them both. He went and made a present of these
to the king, as he had done before of the rabbit which he
took in the warren. The king, in like manner, received
the partridges with great pleasure, and ordered him some
money for drink.

The Cat continued for two or three months thus to
carry his Majesty, from time to time, game of his master's
taking. One day in particular, when he knew for certain
that he was to take the air along the river-side, with his
daughter, the most beautiful princess in the world, he said
to his master:

"If you will follow my advice your fortune is made.
You have nothing else to do but go and wash yourself in
the river, in that part I shall show you, and leave the rest
to me."

The Marquis of Carabas did what the Cat advised him
to, without knowing why or wherefore. While he was
washing the King passed by, and the Cat began to cry out:

"Help! help! My Lord Marquis of Carabas is going to
be drowned."

At this noise the King put his head out of the
coach-window, and, finding it was the Cat who had so often
brought him such good game, he commanded his guards
to run immediately to the assistance of his Lordship the
Marquis of Carabas. While they were drawing the poor
Marquis out of the river, the Cat came up to the coach
and told the King that, while his master was washing,
there came by some rogues, who went off with his clothes,
though he had cried out: "Thieves! thieves!" several
times, as loud as he could.

This cunning Cat had hidden them under a great stone.
The King immediately commanded the officers of his
wardrobe to run and fetch one of his best suits for the
Lord Marquis of Carabas.

The King caressed him after a very extraordinary manner,
and as the fine clothes he had given him extremely
set off his good mien (for he was well made and very
handsome in his person), the King's daughter took a secret
inclination to him, and the Marquis of Carabas had no
sooner cast two or three respectful and somewhat tender
glances but she fell in love with him to distraction. The
King would needs have him come into the coach and take
part of the airing. The Cat, quite overjoyed to see his
project begin to succeed, marched on before, and, meeting
with some countrymen, who were mowing a meadow, he
said to them:

"Good people, you who are mowing, if you do not tell
the King that the meadow you mow belongs to my Lord
Marquis of Carabas, you shall be chopped as small as
herbs for the pot."

The King did not fail asking of the mowers to whom the
meadow they were mowing belonged.

"To my Lord Marquis of Carabas," answered they
altogether, for the Cat's threats had made them terribly

"You see, sir," said the Marquis, "this is a meadow
which never fails to yield a plentiful harvest every year."

The Master Cat, who went still on before, met with
some reapers, and said to them:

"Good people, you who are reaping, if you do not tell
the King that all this corn belongs to the Marquis of
Carabas, you shall be chopped as small as herbs for the

The King, who passed by a moment after, would needs
know to whom all that corn, which he then saw, did belong.

"To my Lord Marquis of Carabas," replied the reapers,
and the King was very well pleased with it, as well as the
Marquis, whom he congratulated thereupon. The Master
Cat, who went always before, said the same words to all
he met, and the King was astonished at the vast estates
of my Lord Marquis of Carabas.

Monsieur Puss came at last to a stately castle, the
master of which was an ogre, the richest had ever been
known; for all the lands which the King had then gone
over belonged to this castle. The Cat, who had taken
care to inform himself who this ogre was and what he
could do, asked to speak with him, saying he could not
pass so near his castle without having the honor of paying
his respects to him.

The ogre received him as civilly as an ogre could do,
and made him sit down.

"I have been assured," said the Cat, "that you have the
gift of being able to change yourself into all sorts of
creatures you have a mind to; you can, for example, transform
yourself into a lion, or elephant, and the like."

"That is true," answered the ogre very briskly; "and
to convince you, you shall see me now become a lion."

Puss was so sadly terrified at the sight of a lion so near
him that he immediately got into the gutter, not without
abundance of trouble and danger, because of his boots,
which were of no use at all to him in walking upon the
tiles. A little while after, when Puss saw that the ogre
had resumed his natural form, he came down, and owned
he had been very much frightened.

"I have been, moreover, informed," said the Cat, "but
I know not how to believe it, that you have also the
power to take on you the shape of the smallest animals;
for example, to change yourself into a rat or a mouse; but
I must own to you I take this to be impossible."

"Impossible!" cried the ogre; "you shall see that

And at the same time he changed himself into a mouse,
and began to run about the floor. Puss no sooner perceived
this but he fell upon him and ate him up.

Meanwhile the King, who saw, as he passed, this fine
castle of the ogre's, had a mind to go into it. Puss, who
heard the noise of his Majesty's coach running over the
draw-bridge, ran out, and said to the King:

"Your Majesty is welcome to this castle of my Lord
Marquis of Carabas."

"What! my Lord Marquis," cried the King, "and does
this castle also belong to you? There can be nothing finer
than this court and all the stately buildings which surround
it; let us go into it, if you please."

The Marquis gave his hand to the Princess, and
followed the King, who went first. They passed into a
spacious hall, where they found a magnificent collation,
which the ogre had prepared for his friends, who were
that very day to visit him, but dared not to enter, knowing
the King was there. His Majesty was perfectly
charmed with the good qualities of my Lord Marquis of
Carabas, as was his daughter, who had fallen violently in
love with him, and, seeing the vast estate he possessed,
said to him, after having drunk five or six glasses:

"It will be owing to yourself only, my Lord Marquis,
if you are not my son-in-law."

The Marquis, making several low bows, accepted the
honor which his Majesty conferred upon him, and forthwith,
that very same day, married the Princess.

Puss became a great lord, and never ran after mice any
more but only for his diversion.[1]

[1] Charles Perrault.


Once upon a time there was a poor laborer who, feeling
that he had not much longer to live, wished to divide his
possessions between his son and daughter, whom he loved

So he called them to him, and said: "Your mother
brought me as her dowry two stools and a straw bed; I
have, besides, a hen, a pot of pinks, and a silver ring,
which were given me by a noble lady who once lodged in
my poor cottage. When she went away she said to me:

"'Be careful of my gifts, good man; see that you do not
lose the ring or forget to water the pinks. As for your
daughter, I promise you that she shall be more beautiful
than anyone you ever saw in your life; call her Felicia, and
when she grows up give her the ring and the pot of pinks
to console her for her poverty.' Take them both, then,
my dear child," he added, "and your brother shall have
everything else."

The two children seemed quite contented, and when
their father died they wept for him, and divided his
possessions as he had told them. Felicia believed that her
brother loved her, but when she sat down upon one of the
stools he said angrily:

"Keep your pot of pinks and your ring, but let my
things alone. I like order in my house."

Felicia, who was very gentle, said nothing, but stood
up crying quietly; while Bruno, for that was her brother's
name, sat comfortably by the fire. Presently, when
supper-time came, Bruno had a delicious egg, and he threw
the shell to Felicia, saying:

"There, that is all I can give you; if you don't like it,
go out and catch frogs; there are plenty of them in the
marsh close by." Felicia did not answer, but she cried
more bitterly than ever, and went away to her own little
room. She found it filled with the sweet scent of the
pinks, and, going up to them, she said sadly:

"Beautiful pinks, you are so sweet and so pretty, you
are the only comfort I have left. Be very sure that I will
take care of you, and water you well, and never allow
any cruel hand to tear you from your stems."

As she leaned over them she noticed that they were
very dry. So taking her pitcher, she ran off in the clear
moonlight to the fountain, which was at some distance.
When she reached it she sat down upon the brink to rest,
but she had hardly done so when she saw a stately lady
coming toward her, surrounded by numbers of attendants.
Six maids of honor carried her train, and she leaned
upon the arm of another.

When they came near the fountain a canopy was
spread for her, under which was placed a sofa of cloth-of-gold,
and presently a dainty supper was served, upon a
table covered with dishes of gold and crystal, while the
wind in the trees and the falling water of the fountain
murmured the softest music.

Felicia was hidden in the shade, too much astonished
by all she saw to venture to move; but in a few moments
the Queen said:

"I fancy I see a shepherdess near that tree; bid her
come hither."

So Felicia came forward and saluted the Queen timidly,
but with so much grace that all were surprised.

"What are you doing here, my pretty child?" asked the
Queen. "Are you not afraid of robbers?"

"Ah! madam," said Felicia, "a poor shepherdess who
has nothing to lose does not fear robbers."

"You are not very rich, then?" said the Queen, smiling.

"I am so poor," answered Felicia, "that a pot of pinks
and a silver ring are my only possessions in the world."

"But you have a heart," said the Queen. "What should
you say if anybody wanted to steal that?"

"I do not know what it is like to lose one's heart,
madam," she replied; "but I have always heard that without
a heart one cannot live, and if it is broken one must
die; and in spite of my poverty I should be sorry not to

"You are quite right to take care of your heart, pretty
one," said the Queen. "But tell me, have you supped?"

"No, madam," answered Felicia; "my brother ate all
the supper there was."

Then the Queen ordered that a place should be made
for her at the table, and herself loaded Felicia's plate with
good things; but she was too much astonished to be

"I want to know what you were doing at the fountain
so late?" said the Queen presently.

"I came to fetch a pitcher of water for my pinks,
madam," she answered, stooping to pick up the pitcher which
stood beside her; but when she showed it to the Queen she
was amazed to see that it had turned to gold, all sparkling
with great diamonds, and the water, of which it was full,
was more fragrant than the sweetest roses. She was afraid
to take it until the Queen said:

"It is yours, Felicia; go and water your pinks with it,
and let it remind you that the Queen of the Woods is
your friend."

The shepherdess threw herself at the Queen's feet, and
thanked her humbly for her gracious words.

"Ah! madam," she cried, "if I might beg you to stay
here a moment I would run and fetch my pot of pinks for
you--they could not fall into better hands."

"Go, Felicia," said the Queen, stroking her cheek
softly; "I will wait here until you come back."

So Felicia took up her pitcher and ran to her little
room, but while she had been away Bruno had gone in
and taken the pot of pinks, leaving a great cabbage in its
place. When she saw the unlucky cabbage Felicia was
much distressed, and did not know what to do; but at
last she ran back to the fountain, and, kneeling before the
Queen, said:

"Madam, Bruno has stolen my pot of pinks, so I have
nothing but my silver ring; but I beg you to accept it as a
proof of my gratitude."

"But if I take your ring, my pretty shepherdess," said
the Queen, "you will have nothing left; and what will you
do then?"

"Ah! madam," she answered simply, "if I have your
friendship I shall do very well."

So the Queen took the ring and put it on her finger, and
mounted her chariot, which was made of coral studded
with emeralds, and drawn by six milk-white horses. And
Felicia looked after her until the winding of the forest
path hid her from her sight, and then she went back to
the cottage, thinking over all the wonderful things that
had happened.

The first thing she did when she reached her room was
to throw the cabbage out of the window.

But she was very much surprised to hear an odd little
voice cry out: "Oh! I am half killed!" and could not tell
where it came from, because cabbages do not generally

As soon as it was light, Felicia, who was very unhappy
about her pot of pinks, went out to look for it, and the
first thing she found was the unfortunate cabbage. She
gave it a push with her foot, saying: "What are you doing
here, and how dared you put yourself in the place of my
pot of pinks?"

"If I hadn't been carried," replied the cabbage, "you
may be very sure that I shouldn't have thought of going

It made her shiver with fright to hear the cabbage talk,
but he went on:

"If you will be good enough to plant me by my
comrades again, I can tell you where your pinks are at this
moment--hidden in Bruno's bed!"

Felicia was in despair when she heard this, not knowing
how she was to get them back. But she replanted the
cabbage very kindly in his old place, and, as she finished
doing it, she saw Bruno's hen, and said, catching hold of it:

"Come here, horrid little creature! you shall suffer for
all the unkind things my brother has done to me."

"Ah! shepherdess," said the hen, "don't kill me; I am
rather a gossip, and I can tell you some surprising things
that you will like to hear. Don't imagine that you are
the daughter of the poor laborer who brought you up;
your mother was a queen who had six girls already, and
the King threatened that unless she had a son who could
inherit his kingdom she should have her head cut off.

"So when the Queen had another little daughter she
was quite frightened, and agreed with her sister (who was
a fairy) to exchange her for the fairy's little son. Now the
Queen had been shut up in a great tower by the King's
orders, and when a great many days went by and still she
heard nothing from the Fairy she made her escape from
the window by means of a rope ladder, taking her little
baby with her. After wandering about until she was half
dead with cold and fatigue she reached this cottage. I
was the laborer's wife, and was a good nurse, and the
Queen gave you into my charge, and told me all her
misfortunes, and then died before she had time to say what
was to become of you.

"As I never in all my life could keep a secret, I could
not help telling this strange tale to my neighbors, and one
day a beautiful lady came here, and I told it to her also.
When I had finished she touched me with a wand she
held in her hand, and instantly I became a hen, and there
was an end of my talking! I was very sad, and my husband,
who was out when it happened, never knew what
had become of me. After seeking me everywhere he
believed that I must have been drowned, or eaten up by
wild beasts in the forest. That same lady came here once
more, and commanded that you should be called Felicia,
and left the ring and the pot of pinks to be given to you;
and while she was in the house twenty-five of the King's
guards came to search for you, doubtless meaning to kill
you; but she muttered a few words, and immediately they
all turned into cabbages. It was one of them whom you
threw out of your window yesterday.

"I don't know how it was that he could speak--I have
never heard either of them say a word before, nor have
I been able to do it myself until now."

The Princess was greatly astonished at the hen's story,
and said kindly: "I am truly sorry for you, my poor nurse,
and wish it was in my power to restore you to your real
form. But we must not despair; it seems to me, after
what you have told me, that something must be going
to happen soon. Just now, however, I must go and look
for my pinks, which I love better than anything in the

Bruno had gone out into the forest, never thinking that
Felicia would search in his room for the pinks, and she
was delighted by his unexpected absence, and thought to
get them back without further trouble. But as soon as
she entered the room she saw a terrible army of rats, who
were guarding the straw bed; and when she attempted to
approach it they sprang at her, biting and scratching
furiously. Quite terrified, she drew back, crying out:
"Oh! my dear pinks, how can you stay here in such bad

Then she suddenly bethought herself of the pitcher of
water, and, hoping that it might have some magic power,
she ran to fetch it, and sprinkled a few drops over the
fierce-looking swarm of rats. In a moment not a tail or a
whisker was to be seen. Each one had made for his hole as
fast as his legs could carry him, so that the Princess could
safely take her pot of pinks. She found them nearly dying
for want of water, and hastily poured all that was left in
the pitcher upon them. As she bent over them, enjoying
their delicious scent, a soft voice, that seemed to rustle
among the leaves, said:

"Lovely Felicia, the day has come at last when I may
have the happiness of telling you how even the flowers
love you and rejoice in your beauty."

The Princess, quite overcome by the strangeness of
hearing a cabbage, a hen, and a pink speak, and by the
terrible sight of an army of rats, suddenly became very
pale, and fainted away.

At this moment in came Bruno. Working hard in the
heat had not improved his temper, and when he saw that
Felicia had succeeded in finding her pinks he was so angry
that he dragged her out into the garden and shut the door
upon her. The fresh air soon made her open her pretty
eyes, and there before her stood the Queen of the Woods,
looking as charming as ever.

"You have a bad brother," she said; "I saw
he turned you out. Shall I punish him for it?"

"Ah! no, madam," she said; "I am not angry with

"But supposing he was not your brother, after all,
what would you say then?" asked the Queen.

"Oh! but I think he must be," said Felicia.

"What!" said the Queen, "have you not heard that you
are a Princess?"

"I was told so a little while ago, madam, but how could
I believe it without a single proof?"

"Ah! dear child," said the Queen, "the way you speak
assures me that, in spite of your humble upbringing, you
are indeed a real princess, and I can save you from being
treated in such a way again."

She was interrupted at this moment by the arrival of
a very handsome young man. He wore a coat of green
velvet fastened with emerald clasps, and had a crown of
pinks on his head. He knelt upon one knee and kissed the
Queen's hand.

"Ah!" she cried, "my pink, my dear son, what a happiness
to see you restored to your natural shape by Felicia's
aid!" And she embraced him joyfully. Then, turning to
Felicia, she said:

"Charming Princess, I know all the hen told you, but
you cannot have heard that the zephyrs, to whom was
entrusted the task of carrying my son to the tower where
the Queen, your mother, so anxiously waited for him,
left him instead in a garden of flowers, while they flew
off to tell your mother. Whereupon a fairy with whom I
had quarrelled changed him into a pink, and I could do
nothing to prevent it.

"You can imagine how angry I was, and how I tried to
find some means of undoing the mischief she had done;
but there was no help for it. I could only bring Prince
Pink to the place where you were being brought up, hoping
that when you grew up he might love you, and by
your care be restored to his natural form. And you see
everything has come right, as I hoped it would. Your
giving me the silver ring was the sign that the power of
the charm was nearly over, and my enemy's last chance
was to frighten you with her army of rats. That she did
not succeed in doing; so now, my dear Felicia, if you will
be married to my son with this silver ring your future
happiness is certain. Do you think him handsome and
amiable enough to be willing to marry him?"

"Madam," replied Felicia, blushing, "you overwhelm
me with your kindness. I know that you are my mother's
sister, and that by your art you turned the soldiers who
were sent to kill me into cabbages, and my nurse into a
hen, and that you do me only too much honor in proposing
that I shall marry your son. How can I explain to you
the cause of my hesitation? I feel, for the first time in my
life, how happy it would make me to be beloved. Can
you indeed give me the Prince's heart?"

"It is yours already, lovely Princess!" he cried, taking
her hand in his; "but for the horrible enchantment which
kept me silent I should have told you long ago how dearly
I love you."

This made the Princess very happy, and the Queen,
who could not bear to see her dressed like a poor
shepherdess, touched her with her wand, saying:

"I wish you to be attired as befits your rank and
beauty." And immediately the Princess's cotton dress
became a magnificent robe of silver brocade embroidered
with carbuncles, and her soft dark hair was encircled by
a crown of diamonds, from which floated a clear white
veil. With her bright eyes, and the charming color in her
cheeks, she was altogether such a dazzling sight that the
Prince could hardly bear it.

"How pretty you are, Felicia!" he cried. "Don't keep
me in suspense, I entreat you; say that you will marry

"Ah!" said the Queen, smiling, "I think she will not
refuse now."

Just then Bruno, who was going back to his work, came
out of the cottage, and thought he must be dreaming
when he saw Felicia; but she called him very kindly, and
begged the Queen to take pity on him.

"What!" she said, "when he was so unkind to you?"

"Ah! madam," said the Princess, "I am so happy that
I should like everybody else to be happy too."

The Queen kissed her, and said: "Well, to please you,
let me see what I can do for this cross Bruno." And with
a wave of her wand she turned the poor little cottage into
a splendid palace, full of treasures; only the two stools and
the straw bed remained just as they were, to remind him
of his former poverty. Then the Queen touched Bruno
himself, and made him gentle and polite and grateful, and
he thanked her and the Princess a thousand times. Lastly,
the Queen restored the hen and the cabbages to their
natural forms, and left them all very contented. The
Prince and Princess were married as soon as possible with
great splendor, and lived happily ever after.[1]

[1] Fortunee. Par Madame la Comtesse d'Aulnoy.


Once upon a time there was a king who had three sons,
who were all so clever and brave that he began to be
afraid that they would want to reign over the kingdom
before he was dead. Now the King, though he felt that
he was growing old, did not at all wish to give up the
government of his kingdom while he could still manage it
very well, so he thought the best way to live in peace
would be to divert the minds of his sons by promises
which he could always get out of when the time came for
keeping them.

So he sent for them all, and, after speaking to them
kindly, he added:

"You will quite agree with me, my dear children, that
my great age makes it impossible for me to look after my
affairs of state as carefully as I once did. I begin to fear
that this may affect the welfare of my subjects, therefore
I wish that one of you should succeed to my crown; but
in return for such a gift as this it is only right that you
should do something for me. Now, as I think of retiring
into the country, it seems to me that a pretty, lively,
faithful little dog would be very good company for me; so,
without any regard for your ages, I promise that the one
who brings me the most beautiful little dog shall succeed
me at once."

The three Princes were greatly surprised by their
father's sudden fancy for a little dog, but as it gave the
two younger ones a chance they would not otherwise have
had of being king, and as the eldest was too polite to
make any objection, they accepted the commission with
pleasure. They bade farewell to the King, who gave them
presents of silver and precious stones, and appointed to
meet them at the same hour, in the same place, after a
year had passed, to see the little dogs they had brought
for him.

Then they went together to a castle which was about
a league from the city, accompanied by all their particular
friends, to whom they gave a grand banquet, and the
three brothers promised to be friends always, to share
whatever good fortune befell them, and not to be parted
by any envy or jealousy; and so they set out, agreeing
to meet at the same castle at the appointed time, to
present themselves before the King together. Each one took
a different road, and the two eldest met with many
adventures; but it is about the youngest that you are
going to hear. He was young, and gay, and handsome,
and knew everything that a prince ought to know; and
as for his courage, there was simply no end to it.

Hardly a day passed without his buying several dogs--big
and little, greyhounds, mastiffs, spaniels, and lapdogs.
As soon as he had bought a pretty one he was sure to see
a still prettier, and then he had to get rid of all the others
and buy that one, as, being alone, he found it impossible
to take thirty or forty thousand dogs about with him. He
journeyed from day to day, not knowing where he was
going, until at last, just at nightfall, he reached a great,
gloomy forest. He did not know his way, and, to make
matters worse, it began to thunder, and the rain poured
down. He took the first path he could find, and after
walking for a long time he fancied he saw a faint light, and
began to hope that he was coming to some cottage where
he might find shelter for the night. At length, guided by
the light, he reached the door of the most splendid castle
he could have imagined. This door was of gold covered
with carbuncles, and it was the pure red light which shone
from them that had shown him the way through the
forest. The walls were of the finest porcelain in all the
most delicate colors, and the Prince saw that all the
stories he had ever read were pictured upon them; but as
he was terribly wet, and the rain still fell in torrents, he
could not stay to look about any more, but came back to
the golden door. There he saw a deer's foot hanging by a
chain of diamonds, and he began to wonder who could
live in this magnificent castle.

"They must feel very secure against robbers," he said
to himself. "What is to hinder anyone from cutting off
that chain and digging out those carbuncles, and making
himself rich for life?"

He pulled the deer's foot, and immediately a silver
bell sounded and the door flew open, but the Prince could
see nothing but numbers of hands in the air, each holding
a torch. He was so much surprised that he stood quite
still, until he felt himself pushed forward by other hands,
so that, though he was somewhat uneasy, he could not
help going on. With his hand on his sword, to be prepared
for whatever might happen, he entered a hall paved
with lapis-lazuli, while two lovely voices sang:

"The hands you see floating above
  Will swiftly your bidding obey;
If your heart dreads not conquering Love,
  In this place you may fearlessly stay."

The Prince could not believe that any danger threatened
him when he was welcomed in this way, so, guided
by the mysterious hands, he went toward a door of coral,
which opened of its own accord, and he found himself in
a vast hall of mother-of-pearl, out of which opened a
number of other rooms, glittering with thousands of
lights, and full of such beautiful pictures and precious
things that the Prince felt quite bewildered. After passing
through sixty rooms the hands that conducted him
stopped, and the Prince saw a most comfortable-looking
arm-chair drawn up close to the chimney-corner; at the
same moment the fire lighted itself, and the pretty, soft,
clever hands took off the Prince's wet, muddy clothes, and
presented him with fresh ones made of the richest stuffs,
all embroidered with gold and emeralds. He could not
help admiring everything he saw, and the deft way in
which the hands waited on him, though they sometimes
appeared so suddenly that they made him jump.

When he was quite ready--and I can assure you that
he looked very different from the wet and weary Prince
who had stood outside in the rain, and pulled the deer's
foot--the hands led him to a splendid room, upon the
walls of which were painted the histories of Puss in Boots
and a number of other famous cats. The table was laid
for supper with two golden plates, and golden spoons and
forks, and the sideboard was covered with dishes and
glasses of crystal set with precious stones. The Prince was
wondering who the second place could be for, when suddenly
in came about a dozen cats carrying guitars and
rolls of music, who took their places at one end of the
room, and under the direction of a cat who beat time with
a roll of paper began to mew in every imaginable key, and
to draw their claws across the strings of the guitars, making
the strangest kind of music that could be heard. The
Prince hastily stopped up his ears, but even then the
sight of these comical musicians sent him into fits of

"What funny thing shall I see next?" he said to himself,
and instantly the door opened, and in came a tiny figure
covered by a long black veil. It was conducted by two
cats wearing black mantles and carrying swords, and a
large party of cats followed, who brought in cages full of
rats and mice.

The Prince was so much astonished that he thought he
must be dreaming, but the little figure came up to him
and threw back its veil, and he saw that it was the loveliest
little white cat it is possible to imagine. She looked
very young and very sad, and in a sweet little voice that
went straight to his heart she said to the Prince:

"King's son, you are welcome; the Queen of the Cats is
glad to see you."

"Lady Cat," replied the Prince, "I thank you for
receiving me so kindly, but surely you are no ordinary
pussy-cat? Indeed, the way you speak and the magnificence
of your castle prove it plainly."

"King's son," said the White Cat, "I beg you to spare
me these compliments, for I am not used to them. But
now," she added, "let supper be served, and let the
musicians be silent, as the Prince does not understand what
they are saying."

So the mysterious hands began to bring in the supper,
and first they put on the table two dishes, one containing
stewed pigeons and the other a fricassee of fat mice. The
sight of the latter made the Prince feel as if he could not
enjoy his supper at all; but the White Cat, seeing this,
assured him that the dishes intended for him were prepared
in a separate kitchen, and he might be quite certain
that they contained neither rats nor mice; and the Prince
felt so sure that she would not deceive him that he had no
more hesitation in beginning. Presently he noticed that
on the little paw that was next him the White Cat wore a
bracelet containing a portrait, and he begged to be allowed
to look at it. To his great surprise he found it represented
an extremely handsome young man, who was so like himself
that it might have been his own portrait! The White
Cat sighed as he looked at it, and seemed sadder than
ever, and the Prince dared not ask any questions for fear
of displeasing her; so he began to talk about other things,
and found that she was interested in all the subjects he
cared for himself, and seemed to know quite well what
was going on in the world. After supper they went into
another room, which was fitted up as a theatre, and the
cats acted and danced for their amusement, and then the
White Cat said good-night to him, and the hands conducted
him into a room he had not seen before, hung with
tapestry worked with butterflies' wings of every color;
there were mirrors that reached from the ceiling to the
floor, and a little white bed with curtains of gauze tied up
with ribbons. The Prince went to bed in silence, as he did
not quite know how to begin a conversation with the
hands that waited on him, and in the morning he was
awakened by a noise and confusion outside of his window,
and the hands came and quickly dressed him in hunting
costume. When he looked out all the cats were assembled
in the courtyard, some leading greyhounds, some blowing
horns, for the White Cat was going out hunting. The
hands led a wooden horse up to the Prince, and seemed
to expect him to mount it, at which he was very indignant;
but it was no use for him to object, for he speedily
found himself upon its back, and it pranced gaily off with

The White Cat herself was riding a monkey, which
climbed even up to the eagles' nests when she had a fancy
for the young eaglets. Never was there a pleasanter hunting
party, and when they returned to the castle the Prince
and the White Cat supped together as before, but when
they had finished she offered him a crystal goblet, which
must have contained a magic draught, for, as soon as he
had swallowed its contents, he forgot everything, even the
little dog that he was seeking for the King, and only
thought how happy he was to be with the White Cat!
And so the days passed, in every kind of amusement, until
the year was nearly gone. The Prince had forgotten all
about meeting his brothers: he did not even know what
country he belonged to; but the White Cat knew when he
ought to go back, and one day she said to him:

"Do you know that you have only three days left to
look for the little dog for your father, and your brothers
have found lovely ones?"

Then the Prince suddenly recovered his memory, and

"What can have made me forget such an important
thing? My whole fortune depends upon it; and even if I
could in such a short time find a dog pretty enough to
gain me a kingdom, where should I find a horse who would
carry me all that way in three days?" And he began to
be very vexed. But the White Cat said to him: "King's
son, do not trouble yourself; I am your friend, and will
make everything easy for you. You can still stay here for
a day, as the good wooden horse can take you to your
country in twelve hours."

"I thank you, beautiful Cat," said the Prince; "but
what good will it do me to get back if I have not a dog to
take to my father?"

"See here," answered the White Cat, holding up an
acorn; "there is a prettier one in this than in the Dogstar!"

"Oh! White Cat dear," said the Prince, "how unkind
you are to laugh at me now!"

"Only listen," she said, holding the acorn to his ear.

And inside it he distinctly heard a tiny voice say:

The Prince was delighted, for a dog that can be shut up
in an acorn must be very small indeed. He wanted to
take it out and look at it, but the White Cat said it would
be better not to open the acorn till he was before the
King, in case the tiny dog should be cold on the journey.
He thanked her a thousand times, and said good-by quite
sadly when the time came for him to set out.

"The days have passed so quickly with you," he said,
"I only wish I could take you with me now."

But the White Cat shook her head and sighed deeply
in answer.

After all the Prince was the first to arrive at the castle
where he had agreed to meet his brothers, but they came
soon after, and stared in amazement when they saw the
wooden horse in the courtyard jumping like a hunter.

The Prince met them joyfully, and they began to tell
him all their adventures; but he managed to hide from
them what he had been doing, and even led them to think
that a turnspit dog which he had with him was the one he
was bringing for the King. Fond as they all were of one
another, the two eldest could not help being glad to think
that their dogs certainly had a better chance. The next
morning they started in the same chariot. The elder
brothers carried in baskets two such tiny, fragile dogs
that they hardly dared to touch them. As for the turnspit,
he ran after the chariot, and got so covered with mud
that one could hardly see what he was like at all. When
they reached the palace everyone crowded round to welcome
them as they went into the King's great hall; and
when the two brothers presented their little dogs nobody
could decide which was the prettier. They were already
arranging between themselves to share the kingdom
equally, when the youngest stepped forward, drawing
from his pocket the acorn the White Cat had given him.
He opened it quickly, and there upon a white cushion
they saw a dog so small that it could easily have been put
through a ring. The Prince laid it upon the ground, and
it got up at once and began to dance. The King did not
know what to say, for it was impossible that anything
could be prettier than this little creature. Nevertheless, as
he was in no hurry to part with his crown, he told his sons
that, as they had been so successful the first time, he
would ask them to go once again, and seek by land and sea
for a piece of muslin so fine that it could be drawn through
the eye of a needle. The brothers were not very willing to
set out again, but the two eldest consented because it gave
them another chance, and they started as before. The
youngest again mounted the wooden horse, and rode back
at full speed to his beloved White Cat. Every door of the
castle stood wide open, and every window and turret was
illuminated, so it looked more wonderful than before.
The hands hastened to meet him, and led the wooden
horse off to the stable, while he hurried in to find the
White Cat. She was asleep in a little basket on a white
satin cushion, but she very soon started up when she
heard the Prince, and was overjoyed at seeing him once

"How could I hope that you would come back to me
King's son?" she said. And then he stroked and petted
her, and told her of his successful journey, and how he had
come back to ask her help, as he believed that it was
impossible to find what the King demanded. The White
Cat looked serious, and said she must think what was to
be done, but that, luckily, there were some cats in the
castle who could spin very well, and if anybody could
manage it they could, and she would set them the task

And then the hands appeared carrying torches, and
conducted the Prince and the White Cat to a long gallery
which overlooked the river, from the windows of which
they saw a magnificent display of fireworks of all sorts;
after which they had supper, which the Prince liked even
better than the fireworks, for it was very late, and he was
hungry after his long ride. And so the days passed quickly
as before; it was impossible to feel dull with the White
Cat, and she had quite a talent for inventing new
amusements--indeed, she was cleverer than a cat has any right
to be. But when the Prince asked her how it was that she
was so wise, she only said:

"King's son, do not ask me; guess what you please. I
may not tell you anything."

The Prince was so happy that he did not trouble himself
at all about the time, but presently the White Cat
told him that the year was gone, and that he need not be
at all anxious about the piece of muslin, as they had made
it very well.

"This time," she added, "I can give you a suitable
escort"; and on looking out into the courtyard the Prince
saw a superb chariot of burnished gold, enameled in flame
color with a thousand different devices. It was drawn by
twelve snow-white horses, harnessed four abreast; their
trappings were flame-colored velvet, embroidered with
diamonds. A hundred chariots followed, each drawn by
eight horses, and filled with officers in splendid uniforms,
and a thousand guards surrounded the procession. "Go!"
said the White Cat, "and when you appear before the
King in such state he surely will not refuse you the crown
which you deserve. Take this walnut, but do not open
it until you are before him, then you will find in it the
piece of stuff you asked me for."

"Lovely Blanchette," said the Prince, "how can I
thank you properly for all your kindness to me? Only tell
me that you wish it, and I will give up for ever all thought
of being king, and will stay here with you always."

"King's son," she replied, "it shows the goodness of
your heart that you should care so much for a little white
cat, who is good for nothing but to catch mice; but you
must not stay."

So the Prince kissed her little paw and set out. You can
imagine how fast he traveled when I tell you that they
reached the King's palace in just half the time it had
taken the wooden horse to get there. This time the
Prince was so late that he did not try to meet his brothers
at their castle, so they thought he could not be coming,
and were rather glad of it, and displayed their pieces of
muslin to the King proudly, feeling sure of success. And
indeed the stuff was very fine, and would go through the
eye of a very large needle; but the King, who was only too
glad to make a difficulty, sent for a particular needle,
which was kept among the Crown jewels, and had such a
small eye that everybody saw at once that it was impossible
that the muslin should pass through it. The Princes
were angry, and were beginning to complain that it was
a trick, when suddenly the trumpets sounded and the
youngest Prince came in. His father and brothers were
quite astonished at his magnificence, and after he had
greeted them he took the walnut from his pocket and
opened it, fully expecting to find the piece of muslin, but
instead there was only a hazel-nut. He cracked it, and
there lay a cherry-stone. Everybody was looking on, and
the King was chuckling to himself at the idea of finding
the piece of muslin in a nutshell.

However, the Prince cracked the cherry-stone, but
everyone laughed when he saw it contained only its own
kernel. He opened that and found a grain of wheat, and
in that was a millet seed. Then he himself began to
wonder, and muttered softly:

"White Cat, White Cat, are you making fun of me?"

In an instant he felt a cat's claw give his hand quite a
sharp scratch, and hoping that it was meant as an
encouragement he opened the millet seed, and drew out of
it a piece of muslin four hundred ells long, woven with the
loveliest colors and most wonderful patterns; and when
the needle was brought it went through the eye six times
with the greatest ease! The King turned pale, and the
other Princes stood silent and sorrowful, for nobody could
deny that this was the most marvelous piece of muslin
that was to be found in the world.

Presently the King turned to his sons, and said, with a
deep sigh:

"Nothing could console me more in my old age than to
realize your willingness to gratify my wishes. Go then
once more, and whoever at the end of a year can bring
back the loveliest princess shall be married to her, and
shall, without further delay, receive the crown, for my
successor must certainly be married." The Prince considered
that he had earned the kingdom fairly twice over
but still he was too well bred to argue about it, so he
just went back to his gorgeous chariot, and, surrounded
by his escort, returned to the White Cat faster than he
had come. This time she was expecting him, the path was
strewn with flowers, and a thousand braziers were burning
scented woods which perfumed the air. Seated in a gallery
from which she could see his arrival, the White Cat waited
for him. "Well, King's son," she said, "here you are once
more, without a crown." "Madam," said he, "thanks to
your generosity I have earned one twice over; but the
fact is that my father is so loth to part with it that it would
be no pleasure to me to take it."

"Never mind," she answered, "it's just as well to try
and deserve it. As you must take back a lovely princess
with you next time I will be on the look-out for one for
you. In the meantime let us enjoy ourselves; to-night I
have ordered a battle between my cats and the river rats
on purpose to amuse you." So this year slipped away
even more pleasantly than the preceding ones. Sometimes
the Prince could not help asking the White Cat how
it was she could talk.

"Perhaps you are a fairy," he said. "Or has some
enchanter changed you into a cat?"

But she only gave him answers that told him nothing.
Days go by so quickly when one is very happy that it is
certain the Prince would never have thought of its being
time to go back, when one evening as they sat together
the White Cat said to him that if he wanted to take a
lovely princess home with him the next day he must be
prepared to do what she told him.

"Take this sword," she said, "and cut off my head!"

"I!" cried the Prince, "I cut off your head! Blanchette
darling, how could I do it?"

"I entreat you to do as I tell you, King's son," she

The tears came into the Prince's eyes as he begged her
to ask him anything but that--to set him any task she
pleased as a proof of his devotion, but to spare him the
grief of killing his dear Pussy. But nothing he could say
altered her determination, and at last he drew his sword,
and desperately, with a trembling hand, cut off the little
white head. But imagine his astonishment and delight
when suddenly a lovely princess stood before him, and,
while he was still speechless with amazement, the door
opened and a goodly company of knights and ladies
entered, each carrying a cat's skin! They hastened with
every sign of joy to the Princess, kissing her hand and
congratulating her on being once more restored to her
natural shape. She received them graciously, but after a
few minutes begged that they would leave her alone with
the Prince, to whom she said:

"You see, Prince, that you were right in supposing me
to be no ordinary cat. My father reigned over six
kingdoms. The Queen, my mother, whom he loved dearly,
had a passion for traveling and exploring, and when I was
only a few weeks old she obtained his permission to visit
a certain mountain of which she had heard many marvelous
tales, and set out, taking with her a number of her
attendants. On the way they had to pass near an old
castle belonging to the fairies. Nobody had ever been
into it, but it was reported to be full of the most wonderful
things, and my mother remembered to have heard that
the fairies had in their garden such fruits as were to be
seen and tasted nowhere else. She began to wish to try
them for herself, and turned her steps in the direction of
the garden. On arriving at the door, which blazed with
gold and jewels, she ordered her servants to knock loudly,
but it was useless; it seemed as if all the inhabitants of the
castle must be asleep or dead. Now the more difficult it
became to obtain the fruit, the more the Queen was
determined that have it she would. So she ordered that they
should bring ladders, and get over the wall into the garden;
but though the wall did not look very high, and they tied
the ladders together to make them very long, it was quite
impossible to get to the top.

"The Queen was in despair, but as night was coming on
she ordered that they should encamp just where they
were, and went to bed herself, feeling quite ill, she was so
disappointed. In the middle of the night she was suddenly
awakened, and saw to her surprise a tiny, ugly old
woman seated by her bedside, who said to her:

"'I must say that we consider it somewhat troublesome
of your Majesty to insist upon tasting our fruit; but to
save you annoyance, my sisters and I will consent to give
you as much as you can carry away, on one condition--that
is, that you shall give us your little daughter to bring
up as our own.'

"'Ah! my dear madam,' cried the Queen, 'is there nothing
else that you will take for the fruit? I will give you
my kingdoms willingly.'

"'No,' replied the old fairy, 'we will have nothing but
your little daughter. She shall be as happy as the day is
long, and we will give her everything that is worth having
in fairy-land, but you must not see her again until she is

"'Though it is a hard condition,' said the Queen, 'I
consent, for I shall certainly die if I do not taste the fruit,
and so I should lose my little daughter either way.'

"So the old fairy led her into the castle, and, though it
was still the middle of the night, the Queen could see
plainly that it was far more beautiful than she had been
told, which you can easily believe, Prince," said the
White Cat, "when I tell you that it was this castle that
we are now in. 'Will you gather the fruit yourself,
Queen?' said the old fairy, 'or shall I call it to come to

"'I beg you to let me see it come when it is called,'
cried the Queen; 'that will be something quite new.' The
old fairy whistled twice, then she cried:

"'Apricots, peaches, nectarines, cherries, plums, pears,
melons, grapes, apples, oranges, lemons, gooseberries,
strawberries, raspberries, come!'

"And in an instant they came tumbling in one over
another, and yet they were neither dusty nor spoilt, and
the Queen found them quite as good as she had fancied
them. You see they grew upon fairy trees.

"The old fairy gave her golden baskets in which to take
the fruit away, and it was as much as four hundred mules
could carry. Then she reminded the Queen of her agreement,
and led her back to the camp, and next morning
she went back to her kingdom, but before she had gone
very far she began to repent of her bargain, and when the
King came out to meet her she looked so sad that he
guessed that something had happened, and asked what
was the matter. At first the Queen was afraid to tell him,
but when, as soon as they reached the palace, five frightful
little dwarfs were sent by the fairies to fetch me, she
was obliged to confess what she had promised. The
King was very angry, and had the Queen and myself shut
up in a great tower and safely guarded, and drove the
little dwarfs out of his kingdom; but the fairies sent a
great dragon who ate up all the people he met, and whose
breath burnt up everything as he passed through the
country; and at last, after trying in vain to rid himself of
this monster, the King, to save his subjects, was obliged
to consent that I should be given up to the fairies. This
time they came themselves to fetch me, in a chariot of
pearl drawn by sea-horses, followed by the dragon, who
was led with chains of diamonds. My cradle was placed
between the old fairies, who loaded me with caresses, and
away we whirled through the air to a tower which they
had built on purpose for me. There I grew up surrounded
with everything that was beautiful and rare, and learning
everything that is ever taught to a princess, but without
any companions but a parrot and a little dog, who could
both talk; and receiving every day a visit from one of the
old fairies, who came mounted upon the dragon. One
day, however, as I sat at my window I saw a handsome
young prince, who seemed to have been hunting in the
forest which surrounded my prison, and who was standing
and looking up at me. When he saw that I observed him
he saluted me with great deference. You can imagine
that I was delighted to have some one new to talk to, and
in spite of the height of my window our conversation was
prolonged till night fell, then my prince reluctantly bade
me farewell. But after that he came again many times
and at last I consented to marry him, but the question
was how was I to escape from my tower. The fairies
always supplied me with flax for my spinning, and by
great diligence I made enough cord for a ladder that would
reach to the foot of the tower; but, alas! just as my prince
was helping me to descend it, the crossest and ugliest of
the old fairies flew in. Before he had time to defend
himself my unhappy lover was swallowed up by the dragon.
As for me, the fairies, furious at having their plans
defeated, for they intended me to marry the king of the
dwarfs, and I utterly refused, changed me into a white
cat. When they brought me here I found all the lords
and ladies of my father's court awaiting me under the
same enchantment, while the people of lesser rank had
been made invisible, all but their hands.

"As they laid me under the enchantment the fairies
told me all my history, for until then I had quite believed
that I was their child, and warned me that my only
chance of regaining my natural form was to win the love
of a prince who resembled in every way my unfortunate

"And you have won it, lovely Princess," interrupted
the Prince.

"You are indeed wonderfully like him," resumed the
Princess--"in voice, in features, and everything; and if
you really love me all my troubles will be at an end."

"And mine too," cried the Prince, throwing himself at
her feet, "if you will consent to marry me."

"I love you already better than anyone in the world,"
she said; "but now it is time to go back to your father, and
we shall hear what he says about it."

So the Prince gave her his hand and led her out, and
they mounted the chariot together; it was even more
splendid than before, and so was the whole company.
Even the horses' shoes were of rubies with diamond nails,
and I suppose that is the first time such a thing was ever

As the Princess was as kind and clever as she was
beautiful, you may imagine what a delightful journey the
Prince found it, for everything the Princess said seemed
to him quite charming.

When they came near the castle where the brothers
were to meet, the Princess got into a chair carried by four
of the guards; it was hewn out of one splendid crystal, and
had silken curtains, which she drew round her that she
might not be seen.

The Prince saw his brothers walking upon the terrace,
each with a lovely princess, and they came to meet him,
asking if he had also found a wife. He said that he had
found something much rarer--a white cat! At which they
laughed very much, and asked him if he was afraid of
being eaten up by mice in the palace. And then they set
out together for the town. Each prince and princess rode
in a splendid carriage; the horses were decked with plumes
of feathers, and glittered with gold. After them came the
youngest prince, and last of all the crystal chair, at which
everybody looked with admiration and curiosity. When
the courtiers saw them coming they hastened to tell the

"Are the ladies beautiful?" he asked anxiously.

And when they answered that nobody had ever before
seen such lovely princesses he seemed quite annoyed.

However, he received them graciously, but found it
impossible to choose between them.

Then turning to his youngest son he said:

"Have you come back alone, after all?"

"Your Majesty," replied the Prince, "will find in that
crystal chair a little white cat, which has such soft paws,
and mews so prettily, that I am sure you will be charmed
with it."

The King smiled, and went to draw back the curtains
himself, but at a touch from the Princess the crystal
shivered into a thousand splinters, and there she stood in
all her beauty; her fair hair floated over her shoulders and
was crowned with flowers, and her softly falling robe was
of the purest white. She saluted the King gracefully,
while a murmur of admiration rose from all around.

"Sire," she said, "I am not come to deprive you of the
throne you fill so worthily. I have already six kingdoms,
permit me to bestow one upon you, and upon each of your
sons. I ask nothing but your friendship, and your consent
to my marriage with your youngest son; we shall still have
three kingdoms left for ourselves."

The King and all the courtiers could not conceal their
joy and astonishment, and the marriage of the three
Princes was celebrated at once. The festivities lasted
several months, and then each king and queen departed to
their own kingdom and lived happily ever after.[1]

[1] La Chatte blanche. Par Madame la Comtesse d'Aulnoy.


Once upon a time, in a large forest, there lived an old
woman and three maidens. They were all three beautiful,
but the youngest was the fairest. Their hut was quite
hidden by trees, and none saw their beauty but the sun
by day, and the moon by night, and the eyes of the stars.
The old woman kept the girls hard at work, from morning
till night, spinning gold flax into yarn, and when one
distaff was empty another was given them, so they had
no rest. The thread had to be fine and even, and when
done was locked up in a secret chamber by the old woman,
who twice or thrice every summer went a journey.
Before she went she gave out work for each day of her
absence, and always returned in the night, so that the
girls never saw what she brought back with her, neither
would she tell them whence the gold flax came, nor what
it was to be used for.

Now, when the time came round for the old woman to
set out on one of these journeys, she gave each maiden
work for six days, with the usual warning: "Children,
don't let your eyes wander, and on no account speak to a
man, for, if you do, your thread will lose its brightness,
and misfortunes of all kinds will follow." They laughed
at this oft-repeated caution, saying to each other: "How
can our gold thread lose its brightness, and have we any
chance of speaking to a man?"

On the third day after the old woman's departure a
young prince, hunting in the forest, got separated from
his companions, and completely lost. Weary of seeking
his way, he flung himself down under a tree, leaving his
horse to browse at will, and fell asleep.

The sun had set when he awoke and began once more
to try and find his way out of the forest. At last he
perceived a narrow foot-path, which he eagerly followed and
found that it led him to a small hut. The maidens, who
were sitting at the door of their hut for coolness, saw him
approaching, and the two elder were much alarmed, for
they remembered the old woman's warning; but the
youngest said: "Never before have I seen anyone like
him; let me have one look." They entreated her to come
in, but, seeing that she would not, left her, and the Prince,
coming up, courteously greeted the maiden, and told her
he had lost his way in the forest and was both hungry and
weary. She set food before him, and was so delighted
with his conversation that she forgot the old woman's
caution, and lingered for hours. In the meantime the
Prince's companions sought him far and wide, but to no
purpose, so they sent two messengers to tell the sad news
to the King, who immediately ordered a regiment of
cavalry and one of infantry to go and look for him.

After three days' search, they found the hut. The
Prince was still sitting by the door and had been so happy
in the maiden's company that the time had seemed like
a single hour. Before leaving he promised to return and
fetch her to his father's court, where he would make her
his bride. When he had gone, she sat down to her wheel
to make up for lost time, but was dismayed to find that
her thread had lost all its brightness. Her heart beat fast
and she wept bitterly, for she remembered the old
woman's warning and knew not what misfortune might now
befall her.

The old woman returned in the night and knew by the
tarnished thread what had happened in her absence. She
was furiously angry and told the maiden that she had
brought down misery both on herself and on the Prince.
The maiden could not rest for thinking of this. At last
she could bear it no longer, and resolved to seek help from
the Prince.

As a child she had learned to understand the speech of
birds, and this was now of great use to her, for, seeing a
raven pluming itself on a pine bough, she cried softly to
it: "Dear bird, cleverest of all birds, as well as swiftest
on wing, wilt thou help me?" "How can I help thee?"
asked the raven. She answered: "Fly away, until thou
comest to a splendid town, where stands a king's palace;
seek out the king's son and tell him that a great misfortune
has befallen me." Then she told the raven how her
thread had lost its brightness, how terribly angry the old
woman was, and how she feared some great disaster. The
raven promised faithfully to do her bidding, and, spreading
its wings, flew away. The maiden now went home and
worked hard all day at winding up the yarn her elder
sisters had spun, for the old woman would let her spin no
longer. Toward evening she heard the raven's "craa,
craa," from the pine tree and eagerly hastened thither to
hear the answer.

By great good fortune the raven had found a wind
wizard's son in the palace garden, who understood the
speech of birds, and to him he had entrusted the message.
When the Prince heard it, he was very sorrowful, and took
counsel with his friends how to free the maiden. Then he
said to the wind wizard's son: "Beg the raven to fly
quickly back to the maiden and tell her to be ready on the
ninth night, for then will I come and fetch her away."
The wind wizard's son did this, and the raven flew so
swiftly that it reached the hut that same evening. The
maiden thanked the bird heartily and went home, telling
no one what she had heard.

As the ninth night drew near she became very unhappy,
for she feared lest some terrible mischance should arise
and ruin all. On this night she crept quietly out of the
house and waited trembling at some little distance from
the hut. Presently she heard the muffled tramp of horses,
and soon the armed troop appeared, led by the Prince,
who had prudently marked all the trees beforehand, in
order to know the way. When he saw the maiden he
sprang from his horse, lifted her into the saddle, and then,
mounting behind, rode homeward. The moon shone so
brightly that they had no difficulty in seeing the marked

By and by the coming of dawn loosened the tongues of
all the birds, and, had the Prince only known what they
were saying, or the maiden been listening, they might
have been spared much sorrow, but they were thinking
only of each other, and when they came out of the forest
the sun was high in the heavens.

Next morning, when the youngest girl did not come to
her work, the old woman asked where she was. The
sisters pretended not to know, but the old woman easily
guessed what had happened, and, as she was in reality a
wicked witch, determined to punish the fugitives.
Accordingly, she collected nine different kinds of enchanters'
nightshade, added some salt, which she first bewitched,
and, doing all up in a cloth into the shape of a fluffy ball,
sent it after them on the wings of the wind, saying:

  "Whirlwind!--mother of the wind!
  Lend thy aid 'gainst her who sinned!
  Carry with thee this magic ball.
  Cast her from his arms for ever,
  Bury her in the rippling river."

At midday the Prince and his men came to a deep
river, spanned by so narrow a bridge that only one rider
could cross at a time. The horse on which the Prince and
the maiden were riding had just reached the middle when
the magic ball flew by. The horse in its fright suddenly
reared, and before anyone could stop it flung the maiden
into the swift current below. The Prince tried to jump
in after her, but his men held him back, and in spite of his
struggles led him home, where for six weeks he shut himself
up in a secret chamber, and would neither eat nor
drink, so great was his grief. At last he became so ill his
life was despaired of, and in great alarm the King caused
all the wizards of his country to be summoned. But none
could cure him. At last the wind wizard's son said to the
King: "Send for the old wizard from Finland he knows
more than all the wizards of your kingdom put together."
A messenger was at once sent to Finland, and a week later
the old wizard himself arrived on the wings of the wind.
"Honored King," said the wizard, "the wind has blown
this illness upon your son, and a magic ball has snatched
away his beloved. This it is which makes him grieve so
constantly. Let the wind blow upon him that it may blow
away his sorrow." Then the King made his son go out
into the wind, and he gradually recovered and told his
father all. "Forget the maiden," said the King, "and take
another bride"; but the Prince said he could never love

A year afterward he came suddenly upon the bridge
where his beloved met her death. As he recalled the
misfortune he wept bitterly, and would have given all he
possessed to have her once more alive. In the midst of his
grief he thought he heard a voice singing, and looked
round, but could see no one. Then he heard the voice
again, and it said:

"Alas! bewitched and all forsaken,
  'Tis I must lie for ever here!
My beloved no thought has taken
  To free his bride, that was so dear."

He was greatly astonished, sprang from his horse, and
looked everywhere to see if no one were hidden under the
bridge; but no one was there. Then he noticed a yellow
water-lily floating on the surface of the water, half hidden
by its broad leaves; but flowers do not sing, and in great
surprise he waited, hoping to hear more. Then again the
voice sang:

"Alas! bewitched and all forsaken,
  'Tis I must lie for ever here!
My beloved no thought has taken
  To free his bride, that was so dear."

The Prince suddenly remembered the gold-spinners, and
said to himself: "If I ride thither, who knows but that
they could explain this to me?" He at once rode to the
hut, and found the two maidens at the fountain. He told
them what had befallen their sister the year before, and
how he had twice heard a strange song, but yet could see
no singer. They said that the yellow water-lily could be
none other than their sister, who was not dead, but
transformed by the magic ball. Before he went to bed, the
eldest made a cake of magic herbs, which she gave him to
eat. In the night he dreamed that he was living in the
forest and could understand all that the birds said to each
other. Next morning he told this to the maidens, and
they said that the charmed cake had caused it, and
advised him to listen well to the birds, and see what they
could tell him, and when he had recovered his bride they
begged him to return and deliver them from their
wretched bondage.

Having promised this, he joyfully returned home, and
as he was riding through the forest he could perfectly
understand all that the birds said. He heard a thrush say
to a magpie: "How stupid men are! they cannot understand
the simplest thing. It is now quite a year since the
maiden was transformed into a water-lily, and, though
she sings so sadly that anyone going over the bridge must
hear her, yet no one comes to her aid. Her former bridegroom
rode over it a few days ago and heard her singing,
but was no wiser than the rest."

"And he is to blame for all her misfortunes," added the
magpie. "If he heeds only the words of men she will remain
a flower for ever. She were soon delivered were the
matter only laid before the old wizard of Finland."

After hearing this, the Prince wondered how he could
get a message conveyed to Finland. He heard one swallow
say to another: "Come, let us fly to Finland; we can build
better nests there."

"Stop, kind friends!" cried the Prince. "Will you do
something for me?" The birds consented, and he said:
"Take a thousand greetings from me to the wizard of
Finland, and ask him how I may restore a maiden transformed
into a flower to her own form."

The swallows flew away, and the Prince rode on to the
bridge. There he waited, hoping to hear the song. But
he heard nothing but the rushing of the water and the
moaning of the wind, and, disappointed, rode home.

Shortly after, he was sitting in the garden, thinking
that the swallows must have forgotten his message, when
he saw an eagle flying above him. The bird gradually
descended until it perched on a tree close to the Prince
and said: "The wizard of Finland greets thee and bids me
say that thou mayest free the maiden thus: Go to the river
and smear thyself all over with mud; then say: 'From a
man into a crab,' and thou wilt become a crab. Plunge
boldly into the water, swim as close as thou canst to the
water-lily's roots, and loosen them from the mud and
reeds. This done, fasten thy claws into the roots and
rise with them to the surface. Let the water flow all over
the flower, and drift with the current until thou comest to
a mountain ash tree on the left bank. There is near it a
large stone. Stop there and say: 'From a crab into a man,
from a water-lily into a maiden,' and ye both will be
restored to your own forms."

Full of doubt and fear, the Prince let some time pass
before he was bold enough to attempt to rescue the
maiden. Then a crow said to him: "Why dost thou hesitate?
The old wizard has not told thee wrong, neither
have the birds deceived thee; hasten and dry the maiden's

"Nothing worse than death can befall me," thought the
Prince, "and death is better than endless sorrow." So he
mounted his horse and went to the bridge. Again he
heard the water-lily's lament, and, hesitating no longer,
smeared himself all over with mud, and, saying: "From a
man into a crab," plunged into the river. For one moment
the water hissed in his ears, and then all was silent. He
swam up to the plant and began to loosen its roots, but so
firmly were they fixed in the mud and reeds that this took
him a long time. He then grasped them and rose to the
surface, letting the water flow over the flower. The current
carried them down the stream, but nowhere could he
see the mountain ash. At last he saw it, and close by the
large stone. Here he stopped and said: "From a crab into
a man, from a water-lily into a maiden," and to his
delight found himself once more a prince, and the maiden
was by his side. She was ten times more beautiful than
before, and wore a magnificent pale yellow robe, sparkling
with jewels. She thanked him for having freed her
from the cruel witch's power, and willingly consented to
marry him.

But when they came to the bridge where he had left his
horse it was nowhere to be seen, for, though the Prince
thought he had been a crab only a few hours, he had in
reality been under the water for more than ten days.
While they were wondering how they should reach his
father's court, they saw a splendid coach driven by six
gaily caparisoned horses coming along the bank. In this
they drove to the palace. The King and Queen were at
church, weeping for their son, whom they had long
mourned for dead. Great was their delight and astonishment
when the Prince entered, leading the beautiful
maiden by the hand. The wedding was at once celebrated
and there was feasting and merry-making throughout the
kingdom for six weeks.

Some time afterward the Prince and his bride were
sitting in the garden, when a crow said to them:
"Ungrateful creatures! Have you forgotten the two poor
maidens who helped you in your distress? Must they
spin gold flax for ever? Have no pity on the old witch.
The three maidens are princesses, whom she stole away
when they were children together, with all the silver
utensils, which she turned into gold flax. Poison were her
fittest punishment."

The Prince was ashamed of having forgotten his promise
and set out at once, and by great good fortune reached
the hut when the old woman was away. The maidens had
dreamed that he was coming, and were ready to go with
him, but first they made a cake in which they put poison,
and left it on a table where the old woman was likely to
see it when she returned. She _did_ see it, and thought it
looked so tempting that she greedily ate it up and at once

In the secret chamber were found fifty wagon-loads of
gold flax, and as much more was discovered buried. The
hut was razed to the ground, and the Prince and his bride
and her two sisters lived happily ever after.


Once upon a time there was a king whose only child
was a girl. Now the King had been very anxious to have
a son, or at least a grandson, to come after him, but he
was told by a prophet whom he consulted that his own
daughter's son should kill him. This news terrified him
so much that he determined never to let his daughter be
married, for he thought it was better to have no grandson
at all than to be killed by his grandson. He therefore
called his workmen together, and bade them dig a deep
round hole in the earth, and then he had a prison of brass
built in the hole, and then, when it was finished, he locked
up his daughter. No man ever saw her, and she never
saw even the fields and the sea, but only the sky and the
sun, for there was a wide open window in the roof of the
house of brass. So the Princess would sit looking up at
the sky, and watching the clouds float across, and wondering
whether she should ever get out of her prison. Now
one day it seemed to her that the sky opened above her,
and a great shower of shining gold fell through the window
in the roof, and lay glittering in her room. Not very
long after, the Princess had a baby, a little boy, but when
the King her father heard of it he was very angry and
afraid, for now the child was born that should be his
death. Yet, cowardly as he was, he had not quite the
heart to kill the Princess and her baby outright, but he
had them put in a huge brass-bound chest and thrust
out to sea, that they might either be drowned or starved,
or perhaps come to a country where they would be out of
his way.

So the Princess and the baby floated and drifted in the
chest on the sea all day and night, but the baby was not
afraid of the waves nor of the wind, for he did not know
that they could hurt him, and he slept quite soundly.
And the Princess sang a song over him, and this was her

  "Child, my child, how sound you sleep!
  Though your mother's care is deep,
  You can lie with heart at rest
  In the narrow brass-bound chest;
  In the starless night and drear
  You can sleep, and never hear
  Billows breaking, and the cry
  Of the night-wind wandering by;
  In soft purple mantle sleeping
  With your little face on mine,
  Hearing not your mother weeping
  And the breaking of the brine."

Well, the daylight came at last, and the great chest was
driven by the waves against the shore of an island. There
the brass-bound chest lay, with the Princess and her
baby in it, till a man of that country came past, and saw
it, and dragged it on to the beach, and when he had
broken it open, behold! there was a beautiful lady and a
little boy. So he took them home, and was very kind to
them, and brought up the boy till he was a young man.
Now when the boy had come to his full strength the King
of that country fell in love with his mother, and wanted
to marry her, but he knew that she would never part
from her boy. So he thought of a plan to get rid of the
boy, and this was his plan: A great Queen of a country not
far off was going to be married, and this king said that all
his subjects must bring him wedding presents to give her.
And he made a feast to which he invited them all, and
they all brought their presents; some brought gold cups,
and some brought necklaces of gold and amber, and some
brought beautiful horses; but the boy had nothing, though
he was the son of a princess, for his mother had nothing to
give him. Then the rest of the company began to laugh
at him, and the King said: "If you have nothing else to
give, at least you might go and fetch the Terrible Head."

The boy was proud, and spoke without thinking:

"Then I swear that I _will_ bring the Terrible Head, if it
may be brought by a living man. But of what head you
speak I know not."

Then they told him that somewhere, a long way off,
there dwelt three dreadful sisters, monstrous ogrish
women, with golden wings and claws of brass, and with
serpents growing on their heads instead of hair. Now these
women were so awful to look on that whoever saw them
was turned at once into stone. And two of them could
not be put to death, but the youngest, whose face was
very beautiful, could be killed, and it was _her_ head that
the boy had promised to bring. You may imagine it was
no easy adventure.

When he heard all this he was perhaps sorry that he had
sworn to bring the Terrible Head, but he was determined
to keep his oath. So he went out from the feast, where
they all sat drinking and making merry, and he walked
alone beside the sea in the dusk of the evening, at the
place where the great chest, with himself and his mother
in it, had been cast ashore.

There he went and sat down on a rock, looking toward
the sea, and wondering how he should begin to fulfill his
vow. Then he felt some one touch him on the shoulder;
and he turned, and saw a young man like a king's son,
having with him a tall and beautiful lady, whose blue eyes
shone like stars. They were taller than mortal men, and
the young man had a staff in his hand with golden wings
on it, and two golden serpents twisted round it, and he
had wings on his cap and on his shoes. He spoke to the
boy, and asked him why he was so unhappy; and the boy
told him how he had sworn to bring the Terrible Head,
and knew not how to begin to set about the adventure.

Then the beautiful lady also spoke, and said that "it
was a foolish oath and a hasty, but it might be kept if a
brave man had sworn it." Then the boy answered that
he was not afraid, if only he knew the way.

Then the lady said that to kill the dreadful woman with
the golden wings and the brass claws, and to cut off her
head, he needed three things: first, a Cap of Darkness,
which would make him invisible when he wore it; next,
a Sword of Sharpness, which would cleave iron at one
blow; and last, the Shoes of Swiftness, with which he
might fly in the air.

The boy answered that he knew not where such things
were to be procured, and that, wanting them, he could
only try and fail. Then the young man, taking off his
own shoes, said: "First, you shall use these shoes till you
have taken the Terrible Head, and then you must give
them back to me. And with these shoes you will fly as
fleet as a bird, or a thought, over the land or over the
waves of the sea, wherever the shoes know the way. But
there are ways which they do not know, roads beyond the
borders of the world. And these roads have you to travel.
Now first you must go to the Three Gray Sisters, who live
far off in the north, and are so very cold that they have
only one eye and one tooth among the three. You must
creep up close to them, and as one of them passes the eye
to the other you must seize it, and refuse to give it up till
they have told you the way to the Three Fairies of the
Garden, and _they_ will give you the Cap of Darkness and
the Sword of Sharpness, and show you how to wing beyond
this world to the land of the Terrible Head."

Then the beautiful lady said: "Go forth at once, and do
not return to say good-by to your mother, for these things
must be done quickly, and the Shoes of Swiftness themselves
will carry you to the land of the Three Gray Sisters--for
they know the measure of that way."

So the boy thanked her, and he fastened on the Shoes
of Swiftness, and turned to say good-by to the young man
and the lady. But, behold! they had vanished, he knew
not how or where! Then he leaped in the air to try the
Shoes of Swiftness, and they carried him more swiftly
than the wind, over the warm blue sea, over the happy
lands of the south, over the northern peoples who drank
mare's milk and lived in great wagons, wandering after
their flocks. Across the wide rivers, where the wild fowl
rose and fled before him, and over the plains and the cold
North Sea he went, over the fields of snow and the hills of
ice, to a place where the world ends, and all water is frozen,
and there are no men, nor beasts, nor any green grass.
There in a blue cave of the ice he found the Three Gray
Sisters, the oldest of living things. Their hair was as white
as the snow, and their flesh of an icy blue, and they
mumbled and nodded in a kind of dream, and their frozen
breath hung round them like a cloud. Now the opening
of the cave in the ice was narrow, and it was not easy to
pass in without touching one of the Gray Sisters. But,
floating on the Shoes of Swiftness, the boy just managed
to steal in, and waited till one of the sisters said to another,
who had their one eye:

"Sister, what do you see? do you see old times coming

"No, sister."

"Then give _me_ the eye, for perhaps I can see farther
than you."

Then the first sister passed the eye to the second, but
as the second groped for it the boy caught it cleverly out
of her hand.

"Where is the eye, sister?" said the second gray woman.

"You have taken it yourself, sister," said the first gray woman.

"Have you lost the eye, sister? have you lost the eye?"
said the third gray woman; "shall we _never_ find it again,
and see old times coming back?"

Then the boy slipped from behind them out of the cold
cave into the air, and he laughed aloud.

When the gray women heard that laugh they began to
weep, for now they knew that a stranger had robbed
them, and that they could not help themselves, and their
tears froze as they fell from the hollows where no eyes
were, and rattled on the icy ground of the cave. Then they
began to implore the boy to give them their eye back
again, and he could not help being sorry for them, they
were so pitiful. But he said he would never give them the
eye till they told him the way to the Fairies of the Garden.

Then they wrung their hands miserably, for they
guessed why he had come, and how he was going to try
to win the Terrible Head. Now the Dreadful Women
were akin to the Three Gray Sisters, and it was hard for
them to tell the boy the way. But at last they told him
to keep always south, and with the land on his left and
the sea on his right, till he reached the Island of the Fairies
of the Garden. Then he gave them back the eye, and they
began to look out once more for the old times coming back
again. But the boy flew south between sea and land,
keeping the land always on his left hand, till he saw a
beautiful island crowned with flowering trees. There he
alighted, and there he found the Three Fairies of the
Garden. They were like three very beautiful young women,
dressed one in green, one in white, and one in red,
and they were dancing and singing round an apple tree
with apples of gold, and this was their song:

Round and round the apples of gold,
  Round and round dance we;
Thus do we dance from the days of old
  About the enchanted tree;
Round, and round, and round we go,
While the spring is green, or the stream shall flow,
  Or the wind shall stir the sea!

There is none may taste of the golden fruit
  Till the golden new time come
Many a tree shall spring from shoot,
Many a blossom be withered at root,
  Many a song be dumb;
Broken and still shall be many a lute
  Or ever the new times come!

Round and round the tree of gold,
  Round and round dance we,
So doth the great world spin from of old,
Summer and winter, and fire and cold,
Song that is sung, and tale that is told,
Even as we dance, that fold and unfold
  Round the stem of the fairy tree!

These grave dancing fairies were very unlike the Grey
Women, and they were glad to see the boy, and treated
him kindly. Then they asked him why he had come; and
he told them how he was sent to find the Sword of Sharpness
and the Cap of Darkness. And the fairies gave him
these, and a wallet, and a shield, and belted the sword,
which had a diamond blade, round his waist, and the cap
they set on his head, and told him that now even they
could not see him though they were fairies. Then he
took it off, and they each kissed him and wished him good
fortune, and then they began again their eternal dance
round the golden tree, for it is their business to guard it
till the new times come, or till the world's ending. So the
boy put the cap on his head, and hung the wallet round
his waist, and the shining shield on his shoulders, and flew
beyond the great river that lies coiled like a serpent round
the whole world. And by the banks of that river, there he
found the three Terrible Women all asleep beneath a
poplar tree, and the dead poplar leaves lay all about them.
Their golden wings were folded and their brass claws were
crossed, and two of them slept with their hideous heads
beneath their wings like birds, and the serpents in their
hair writhed out from under the feathers of gold. But the
youngest slept between her two sisters, and she lay on her
back, with her beautiful sad face turned to the sky; and
though she slept her eyes were wide open. If the boy had
seen her he would have been changed into stone by the
terror and the pity of it, she was so awful; but he had
thought of a plan for killing her without looking on her
face. As soon as he caught sight of the three from far off
he took his shining shield from his shoulders, and held it
up like a mirror, so that he saw the Dreadful Women
reflected in it, and did not see the Terrible Head itself.
Then he came nearer and nearer, till he reckoned that he
was within a sword's stroke of the youngest, and he
guessed where he should strike a back blow behind him.
Then he drew the Sword of Sharpness and struck once,
and the Terrible Head was cut from the shoulders of the
creature, and the blood leaped out and struck him like a
blow. But he thrust the Terrible Head into his wallet,
and flew away without looking behind. Then the two
Dreadful Sisters who were left wakened, and rose in the
air like great birds; and though they could not see him
because of his Cap of Darkness, they flew after him up the
wind, following by the scent through the clouds, like
hounds hunting in a wood. They came so close that he
could hear the clatter of their golden wings, and their
shrieks to each other: "_here, here,_" "_no, there; this way
he went,_" as they chased him. But the Shoes of Swiftness
flew too fast for them, and at last their cries and the rattle
of their wings died away as he crossed the great river that
runs round the world.

Now when the horrible creatures were far in the
distance, and the boy found himself on the right side of the
river, he flew straight eastward, trying to seek his own
country. But as he looked down from the air he saw a
very strange sight--a beautiful girl chained to a stake at
the high-water mark of the sea. The girl was so frightened
or so tired that she was only prevented from falling
by the iron chain about her waist, and there she hung, as
if she were dead. The boy was very sorry for her and flew
down and stood beside her. When he spoke she raised her
head and looked round, but his voice only seemed to
frighten her. Then he remembered that he was wearing
the Cap of Darkness, and that she could only hear him,
not see him. So he took it off, and there he stood before
her, the handsomest young man she had ever seen in all
her life, with short curly yellow hair, and blue eyes, and a
laughing face. And he thought her the most beautiful
girl in the world. So first with one blow of the Sword of
Sharpness he cut the iron chain that bound her, and then
he asked her what she did there, and why men treated her
so cruelly. And she told him that she was the daughter of
the King of that country, and that she was tied there to
be eaten by a monstrous beast out of the sea; for the
beast came and devoured a girl every day. Now the lot
had fallen on her; and as she was just saying this a long
fierce head of a cruel sea creature rose out of the waves
and snapped at the girl. But the beast had been too
greedy and too hurried, so he missed his aim the first time.
Before he could rise and bite again the boy had whipped
the Terrible Head out of his wallet and held it up. And
when the sea beast leaped out once more its eyes fell on
the head, and instantly it was turned into a stone. And
the stone beast is there on the sea-coast to this day.

Then the boy and the girl went to the palace of the
King, her father, where everyone was weeping for her
death, and they could hardly believe their eyes when they
saw her come back well. And the King and Queen made
much of the boy, and could not contain themselves for
delight when they found he wanted to marry their daughter.
So the two were married with the most splendid
rejoicings, and when they had passed some time at court
they went home in a ship to the boy's own country. For
he could not carry his bride through the air, so he took
the Shoes of Swiftness, and the Cap of Darkness, and the
Sword of Sharpness up to a lonely place in the hills. There
he left them, and there they were found by the man and
woman who had met him at home beside the sea, and had
helped him to start on his journey.

When this had been done the boy and his bride set
forth for home, and landed at the harbor of his native
land. But whom should he meet in the very street of the
town but his own mother, flying for her life from the
wicked King, who now wished to kill her because he
found that she would never marry him! For if she had
liked the King ill before, she liked him far worse now that
he had caused her son to disappear so suddenly. She did
not know, of course, where the boy had gone, but thought
the King had slain him secretly. So now she was running
for her very life, and the wicked King was following her
with a sword in his hand. Then, behold! she ran into her
son's very arms, but he had only time to kiss her and step
in front of her, when the King struck at him with his
sword. The boy caught the blow on his shield, and cried
to the King:

"I swore to bring you the Terrible Head, and see how I
keep my oath!"

Then he drew forth the head from his wallet, and when
the King's eyes fell on it, instantly he was turned into
stone, just as he stood there with his sword lifted!

Now all the people rejoiced, because the wicked King
should rule them no longer. And they asked the boy to
be their king, but he said no, he must take his mother home
to her father's house. So the people chose for king the man
who had been kind to his mother when first she was cast
on the island in the great chest.

Presently the boy and his mother and his wife set sail
for his mother's own country, from which she had been
driven so unkindly. But on the way they stayed at the
court of a king, and it happened that he was holding
games, and giving prizes to the best runners, boxers, and
quoit-throwers. Then the boy would try his strength with
the rest, but he threw the quoit so far that it went beyond
what had ever been thrown before, and fell in the crowd,
striking a man so that he died. Now this man was no
other than the father of the boy's mother, who had fled
away from his own kingdom for fear his grandson should
find him and kill him after all. Thus he was destroyed by
his own cowardice and by chance, and thus the prophecy
was fulfilled. But the boy and his wife and his mother
went back to the kingdom that was theirs, and lived long
and happily after all their troubles.


Once upon a time there was a princess who was the
prettiest creature in the world. And because she was so
beautiful, and because her hair was like the finest gold,
and waved and rippled nearly to the ground, she was
called Pretty Goldilocks. She always wore a crown of
flowers, and her dresses were embroidered with diamonds
and pearls, and everybody who saw her fell in love with

Now one of her neighbors was a young king who was
not married. He was very rich and handsome, and when
he heard all that was said about Pretty Goldilocks, though
he had never seen her, he fell so deeply in love with her
that he could neither eat nor drink. So he resolved to
send an ambassador to ask her in marriage. He had a
splendid carriage made for his ambassador, and gave him
more than a hundred horses and a hundred servants, and
told him to be sure and bring the Princess back with him.
After he had started nothing else was talked of at Court,
and the King felt so sure that the Princess would consent
that he set his people to work at pretty dresses and splendid
furniture, that they might be ready by the time she
came. Meanwhile, the ambassador arrived at the Princess's
palace and delivered his little message, but whether
she happened to be cross that day, or whether the
compliment did not please her, is not known. She only
answered that she was very much obliged to the King, but
she had no wish to be married. The ambassador set off
sadly on his homeward way, bringing all the King's
presents back with him, for the Princess was too well
brought up to accept the pearls and diamonds when she
would not accept the King, so she had only kept twenty-five
English pins that he might not be vexed.

When the ambassador reached the city, where the
King was waiting impatiently, everybody was very much
annoyed with him for not bringing the Princess, and the
King cried like a baby, and nobody could console him.
Now there was at the Court a young man, who was more
clever and handsome than anyone else. He was called
Charming, and everyone loved him, excepting a few
envious people who were angry at his being the King's
favorite and knowing all the State secrets. He happened
to one day be with some people who were speaking of the
ambassador's return and saying that his going to the
Princess had not done much good, when Charming said

"If the King had sent me to the Princess Goldilocks I
am sure she would have come back with me."

His enemies at once went to the King and said:

"You will hardly believe, sire, what Charming has the
audacity to say--that if _he_ had been sent to the Princess
Goldilocks she would certainly have come back with him.
He seems to think that he is so much handsomer than you
that the Princess would have fallen in love with him and
followed him willingly." The King was very angry when
he heard this.

"Ha, ha!" said he; "does he laugh at my unhappiness,
and think himself more fascinating than I am? Go, and
let him be shut up in my great tower to die of hunger."

So the King's guards went to fetch Charming, who had
thought no more of his rash speech, and carried him off to
prison with great cruelty. The poor prisoner had only a
little straw for his bed, and but for a little stream of water
which flowed through the tower he would have died of

One day when he was in despair he said to himself:

"How can I have offended the King? I am his most
faithful subject, and have done nothing against him."

The King chanced to be passing the tower and recognized
the voice of his former favorite. He stopped to listen
in spite of Charming's enemies, who tried to persuade
him to have nothing more to do with the traitor. But the
King said:

"Be quiet, I wish to hear what he says."

And then he opened the tower door and called to
Charming, who came very sadly and kissed the King's
hand, saying:

"What have I done, sire, to deserve this cruel treatment?"

"You mocked me and my ambassador," said the King,
"and you said that if I had sent you for the Princess
Goldilocks you would certainly have brought her back."

"It is quite true, sire," replied Charming; "I should have
drawn such a picture of you, and represented your good
qualities in such a way, that I am certain the Princess
would have found you irresistible. But I cannot see what
there is in that to make you angry."

The King could not see any cause for anger either when
the matter was presented to him in this light, and he
began to frown very fiercely at the courtiers who had so
misrepresented his favorite.

So he took Charming back to the palace with him, and
after seeing that he had a very good supper he said to

"You know that I love Pretty Goldilocks as much as
ever, her refusal has not made any difference to me; but
I don't know how to make her change her mind; I really
should like to send you, to see if you can persuade her to
marry me."

Charming replied that he was perfectly willing to go,
and would set out the very next day.

"But you must wait till I can get a grand escort for
you," said the King. But Charming said that he only
wanted a good horse to ride, and the King, who was
delighted at his being ready to start so promptly, gave him
letters to the Princess, and bade him good speed. It was
on a Monday morning that he set out all alone upon his
errand, thinking of nothing but how he could persuade
the Princess Goldilocks to marry the King. He had a
writing-book in his pocket, and whenever any happy
thought struck him he dismounted from his horse and sat
down under the trees to put it into the harangue which
he was preparing for the Princess, before he forgot it.

One day when he had started at the very earliest dawn,
and was riding over a great meadow, he suddenly had a
capital idea, and, springing from his horse, he sat down
under a willow tree which grew by a little river. When
he had written it down he was looking round him, pleased
to find himself in such a pretty place, when all at once he
saw a great golden carp lying gasping and exhausted upon
the grass. In leaping after little flies she had thrown
herself high upon the bank, where she had lain till she was
nearly dead. Charming had pity upon her, and, though
he couldn't help thinking that she would have been very
nice for dinner, he picked her up gently and put her back
into the water. As soon as Dame Carp felt the refreshing
coolness of the water she sank down joyfully to the
bottom of the river, then, swimming up to the bank quite
boldly, she said:

"I thank you, Charming, for the kindness you have
done me. You have saved my life; one day I will repay
you." So saying, she sank down into the water again,
leaving Charming greatly astonished at her politeness.

Another day, as he journeyed on, he saw a raven in
great distress. The poor bird was closely pursued by an
eagle, which would soon have eaten it up, had not Charming
quickly fitted an arrow to his bow and shot the eagle
dead. The raven perched upon a tree very joyfully.

"Charming," said he, "it was very generous of you to
rescue a poor raven; I am not ungrateful, some day I will
repay you."

Charming thought it was very nice of the raven to say
so, and went on his way.

Before the sun rose he found himself in a thick wood
where it was too dark for him to see his path, and here
he heard an owl crying as if it were in despair.

"Hark!" said he, "that must be an owl in great trouble,
I am sure it has gone into a snare"; and he began to hunt
about, and presently found a great net which some
bird-catchers had spread the night before.

"What a pity it is that men do nothing but torment and
persecute poor creatures which never do them any harm!"
said he, and he took out his knife and cut the cords of the
net, and the owl flitted away into the darkness, but then
turning, with one flicker of her wings, she came back to
Charming and said:

"It does not need many words to tell you how great a
service you have done me. I was caught; in a few minutes
the fowlers would have been here--without your help I
should have been killed. I am grateful, and one day I
will repay you."

These three adventures were the only ones of any
consequence that befell Charming upon his journey, and he
made all the haste he could to reach the palace of the
Princess Goldilocks.

When he arrived he thought everything he saw delightful
and magnificent. Diamonds were as plentiful as pebbles,
and the gold and silver, the beautiful dresses, the
sweetmeats and pretty things that were everywhere quite
amazed him; he thought to himself: "If the Princess
consents to leave all this, and come with me to marry the
King, he may think himself lucky!"

Then he dressed himself carefully in rich brocade, with
scarlet and white plumes, and threw a splendid embroidered
scarf over his shoulder, and, looking as gay and as
graceful as possible, he presented himself at the door of
the palace, carrying in his arm a tiny pretty dog which he
had bought on the way. The guards saluted him respectfully,
and a messenger was sent to the Princess to announce
the arrival of Charming as ambassador of her
neighbor the King.

"Charming," said the Princess, "the name promises
well; I have no doubt that he is good looking and
fascinates everybody."

"Indeed he does, madam," said all her maids of honor
in one breath. "We saw him from the window of the
garret where we were spinning flax, and we could do
nothing but look at him as long as he was in sight."

"Well to be sure," said the Princess, "that's how you
amuse yourselves, is it? Looking at strangers out of the
window! Be quick and give me my blue satin embroidered
dress, and comb out my golden hair. Let somebody
make me fresh garlands of flowers, and give me my high-heeled
shoes and my fan, and tell them to sweep my great
hall and my throne, for I want everyone to say I am really
'Pretty Goldilocks.'"

You can imagine how all her maids scurried this way
and that to make the Princess ready, and how in their
haste they knocked their heads together and hindered
each other, till she thought they would never have done.
However, at last they led her into the gallery of mirrors
that she might assure herself that nothing was lacking in
her appearance, and then she mounted her throne of gold,
ebony, and ivory, while her ladies took their guitars and
began to sing softly. Then Charming was led in, and was
so struck with astonishment and admiration that at first
not a word could he say. But presently he took courage
and delivered his harangue, bravely ending by begging
the Princess to spare him the disappointment of going
back without her.

"Sir Charming," answered she, "all the reasons you
have given me are very good ones, and I assure you that
I should have more pleasure in obliging you than anyone
else, but you must know that a month ago as I was walking
by the river with my ladies I took off my glove, and
as I did so a ring that I was wearing slipped off my finger
and rolled into the water. As I valued it more than my
kingdom, you may imagine how vexed I was at losing it,
and I vowed to never listen to any proposal of marriage
unless the ambassador first brought me back my ring. So
now you know what is expected of you, for if you talked
for fifteen days and fifteen nights you could not make me
change my mind."

Charming was very much surprised by this answer, but
he bowed low to the Princess, and begged her to accept
the embroidered scarf and the tiny dog he had brought
with him. But she answered that she did not want any
presents, and that he was to remember what she had just
told him. When he got back to his lodging he went to bed
without eating any supper, and his little dog, who was
called Frisk, couldn't eat any either, but came and lay
down close to him. All night Charming sighed and lamented.

"How am I to find a ring that fell into the river a month
ago?" said he. "It is useless to try; the Princess must have
told me to do it on purpose, knowing it was impossible."
And then he sighed again.

Frisk heard him and said:

"My dear master, don't despair; the luck may change,
you are too good not to be happy. Let us go down to the
river as soon as it is light."

But Charming only gave him two little pats and said
nothing, and very soon he fell asleep.

At the first glimmer of dawn Frisk began to jump about,
and when he had waked Charming they went out together,
first into the garden, and then down to the river's
brink, where they wandered up and down. Charming was
thinking sadly of having to go back unsuccessful when he
heard someone calling: "Charming, Charming!"  He looked
all about him and thought he must be dreaming, as he
could not see anybody. Then he walked on and the voice
called again: "Charming, Charming!"

"Who calls me?" said he. Frisk, who was very small
and could look closely into the water, cried out: "I see a
golden carp coming." And sure enough there was the
great carp, who said to Charming:

"You saved my life in the meadow by the willow tree,
and I promised that I would repay you. Take this, it is
Princess Goldilock's ring." Charming took the ring out
of Dame Carp's mouth, thanking her a thousand times,
and he and tiny Frisk went straight to the palace, where
someone told the Princess that he was asking to see her.

"Ah! poor fellow," said she, "he must have come to say
good-by, finding it impossible to do as I asked."

So in came Charming, who presented her with the ring
and said:

"Madam, I have done your bidding. Will it please you
to marry my master?" When the Princess saw her ring
brought back to her unhurt she was so astonished that she
thought she must be dreaming.

"Truly, Charming," said she, "you must be the favorite
of some fairy, or you could never have found it."

"Madam," answered he, "I was helped by nothing but
my desire to obey your wishes."

"Since you are so kind," said she, "perhaps you will do
me another service, for till it is done I will never be
married. There is a prince not far from here whose name
is Galifron, who once wanted to marry me, but when I
refused he uttered the most terrible threats against me,
and vowed that he would lay waste my country. But
what could I do? I could not marry a frightful giant as
tall as a tower, who eats up people as a monkey eats
chestnuts, and who talks so loud that anybody who has
to listen to him becomes quite deaf. Nevertheless, he
does not cease to persecute me and to kill my subjects.
So before I can listen to your proposal you must kill him
and bring me his head."

Charming was rather dismayed at this command, but
he answered:

"Very well, Princess, I will fight this Galifron; I believe
that he will kill me, but at any rate I shall die in your

Then the Princess was frightened and said everything
she could think of to prevent Charming from fighting the
giant, but it was of no use, and he went out to arm himself
suitably, and then, taking little Frisk with him, he mounted
his horse and set out for Galifron's country. Everyone
he met told him what a terrible giant Galifron was, and
that nobody dared go near him; and the more he heard,
the more frightened he grew. Frisk tried to encourage
him by saying: "While you are fighting the giant, dear
master, I will go and bite his heels, and when he stoops
down to look at me you can kill him."

Charming praised his little dog's plan, but knew that
this help would not do much good.

At last he drew near the giant's castle, and saw to his
horror that every path that led to it was strewn with
bones. Before long he saw Galifron coming. His head
was higher than the tallest trees, and he sang in a terrible

  "Bring out your little boys and girls,
  Pray do not stay to do their curls,
  For I shall eat so very many,
  I shall not know if they have any."

Thereupon Charming sang out as loud as he could to
the same tune:

  "Come out and meet the valiant Charming
  Who finds you not at all alarming;
  Although he is not very tall,
  He's big enough to make you fall."

The rhymes were not very correct, but you see he had
made them up so quickly that it is a miracle that they
were not worse; especially as he was horribly frightened
all the time. When Galifron heard these words he looked
all about him, and saw Charming standing, sword in hand
this put the giant into a terrible rage, and he aimed a blow
at Charming with his huge iron club, which would
certainly have killed him if it had reached him, but at that
instant a raven perched upon the giant's head, and, pecking
with its strong beak and beating with its great wings
so confused and blinded him that all his blows fell harmlessly
upon the air, and Charming, rushing in, gave him
several strokes with his sharp sword so that he fell to the
ground. Whereupon Charming cut off his head before he
knew anything about it, and the raven from a tree close
by croaked out:

"You see I have not forgotten the good turn you did me
in killing the eagle. To-day I think I have fulfilled my
promise of repaying you."

"Indeed, I owe you more gratitude than you ever owed
me," replied Charming.

And then he mounted his horse and rode off with
Galifron's head.

When he reached the city the people ran after him in
crowds, crying:

"Behold the brave Charming, who has killed the giant!"
And their shouts reached the Princess's ear, but she dared
not ask what was happening, for fear she should hear that
Charming had been killed. But very soon he arrived at
the palace with the giant's head, of which she was still
terrified, though it could no longer do her any harm.

"Princess," said Charming, "I have killed your enemy;
I hope you will now consent to marry the King my master."

"Oh dear! no," said the Princess, "not until you have
brought me some water from the Gloomy Cavern.

"Not far from here there is a deep cave, the entrance to
which is guarded by two dragons with fiery eyes, who will
not allow anyone to pass them. When you get into the
cavern you will find an immense hole, which you must go
down, and it is full of toads and snakes; at the bottom of
this hole there is another little cave, in which rises the
Fountain of Health and Beauty. It is some of this water
that I really must have: everything it touches becomes
wonderful. The beautiful things will always remain
beautiful, and the ugly things become lovely. If one is
young one never grows old, and if one is old one becomes
young. You see, Charming, I could not leave my kingdom
without taking some of it with me."

"Princess," said he, "you at least can never need this
water, but I am an unhappy ambassador, whose death
you desire. Where you send me I will go, though I know
I shall never return."

And, as the Princess Goldilocks showed no sign of
relenting, he started with his little dog for the Gloomy
Cavern. Everyone he met on the way said:

"What a pity that a handsome young man should
throw away his life so carelessly! He is going to the cavern
alone, though if he had a hundred men with him he could
not succeed. Why does the Princess ask impossibilities?"
Charming said nothing, but he was very sad. When
he was near the top of a hill he dismounted to let his horse
graze, while Frisk amused himself by chasing flies.
Charming knew he could not be far from the Gloomy
Cavern, and on looking about him he saw a black hideous
rock from which came a thick smoke, followed in a moment
by one of the dragons with fire blazing from his
mouth and eyes. His body was yellow and green, and his
claws scarlet, and his tail was so long that it lay in a
hundred coils. Frisk was so terrified at the sight of it that
he did not know where to hide. Charming, quite determined
to get the water or die, now drew his sword, and,
taking the crystal flask which Pretty Goldilocks had
given him to fill, said to Frisk:

"I feel sure that I shall never come back from this
expedition; when I am dead, go to the Princess and tell
her that her errand has cost me my life. Then find the
King my master, and relate all my adventures to him."

As he spoke he heard a voice calling: "Charming,

"Who calls me?" said he; then he saw an owl sitting in
a hollow tree, who said to him:

"You saved my life when I was caught in the net, now
I can repay you. Trust me with the flask, for I know all
the ways of the Gloomy Cavern, and can fill it from the
Fountain of Beauty." Charming was only too glad to
give her the flask, and she flitted into the cavern quite
unnoticed by the dragon, and after some time returned
with the flask, filled to the very brim with sparkling water.
Charming thanked her with all his heart, and joyfully
hastened back to the town.

He went straight to the palace and gave the flask to the
Princess, who had no further objection to make. So she
thanked Charming, and ordered that preparations should
be made for her departure, and they soon set out together.
The Princess found Charming such an agreeable companion
that she sometimes said to him: "Why didn't we stay
where we were? I could have made you king, and we
should have been so happy!"

But Charming only answered:

"I could not have done anything that would have
vexed my master so much, even for a kingdom, or to
please you, though I think you are as beautiful as the

At last they reached the King's great city, and he came
out to meet the Princess, bringing magnificent presents,
and the marriage was celebrated with great rejoicings.
But Goldilocks was so fond of Charming that she could
not be happy unless he was near her, and she was always
singing his praises.

"If it hadn't been for Charming," she said to the King,
"I should never have come here; you ought to be very
much obliged to him, for he did the most impossible things
and got me water from the Fountain of Beauty, so I can
never grow old, and shall get prettier every year."

Then Charming's enemies said to the King:

"It is a wonder that you are not jealous, the Queen
thinks there is nobody in the world like Charming. As if
anybody you had sent could not have done just as much!"

"It is quite true, now I come to think of it," said the
King. "Let him be chained hand and foot, and thrown
into the tower."

So they took Charming, and as a reward for having
served the King so faithfully he was shut up in the tower,
where he only saw the jailer, who brought him a piece of
black bread and a pitcher of water every day.

However, little Frisk came to console him, and told
him all the news.

When Pretty Goldilocks heard what had happened she
threw herself at the King's feet and begged him to set
Charming free, but the more she cried, the more angry he
was, and at last she saw that it was useless to say any
more; but it made her very sad. Then the King took it
into his head that perhaps he was not handsome enough
to please the Princess Goldilocks, and he thought he
would bathe his face with the water from the Fountain
of Beauty, which was in the flask on a shelf in the Princess's
room, where she had placed it that she might see it often.
Now it happened that one of the Princess's ladies in chasing
a spider had knocked the flask off the shelf and broken
it, and every drop of the water had been spilt. Not knowing
what to do, she had hastily swept away the pieces of
crystal, and then remembered that in the King's room
she had seen a flask of exactly the same shape, also filled
with sparkling water. So, without saying a word, she
fetched it and stood it upon the Queen's shelf.

Now the water in this flask was what was used in the
kingdom for getting rid of troublesome people. Instead
of having their heads cut off in the usual way, their faces
were bathed with the water, and they instantly fell asleep
and never woke up any more. So, when the King, thinking
to improve his beauty, took the flask and sprinkled
the water upon his face, _he_ fell asleep, and nobody could
wake him.

Little Frisk was the first to hear the news, and he ran
to tell Charming, who sent him to beg the Princess not to
forget the poor prisoner. All the palace was in confusion
on account of the King's death, but tiny Frisk made his
way through the crowd to the Princess's side, and said:

"Madam, do not forget poor Charming."

Then she remembered all he had done for her, and without
saying a word to anyone went straight to the tower,
and with her own hands took off Charming's chains.
Then, putting a golden crown upon his head, and the royal
mantle upon his shoulders, she said:

"Come, faithful Charming, I make you king, and will
take you for my husband."

Charming, once more free and happy, fell at her feet
and thanked her for her gracious words.

Everybody was delighted that he should be king, and
the wedding, which took place at once, was the prettiest
that can be imagined, and Prince Charming and Princess
Goldilocks lived happily ever after.[1]

[1] Madame d'Aulnoy.


Dick Whittington was a very little boy when his
father and mother died; so little, indeed, that he never
knew them, nor the place where he was born. He
strolled about the country as ragged as a colt, till he met
with a wagoner who was going to London, and who gave
him leave to walk all the way by the side of his wagon
without paying anything for his passage. This pleased
little Whittington very much, as he wanted to see London
sadly, for he had heard that the streets were paved with
gold, and he was willing to get a bushel of it; but how
great was his disappointment, poor boy! when he saw
the streets covered with dirt instead of gold, and found
himself in a strange place, without a friend, without food,
and without money.

Though the wagoner was so charitable as to let him
walk up by the side of the wagon for nothing, he took
care not to know him when he came to town, and the
poor boy was, in a little time, so cold and hungry that
he wished himself in a good kitchen and by a warm fire
in the country.

In his distress he asked charity of several people, and
one of them bid him "Go to work for an idle rogue."
"That I will," said Whittington, "with all my heart; I
will work for you if you will let me."

The man, who thought this savored of wit and impertinence
(though the poor lad intended only to show his
readiness to work), gave him a blow with a stick which
broke his head so that the blood ran down. In this situation,
and fainting for want of food, he laid himself down
at the door of one Mr. Fitzwarren, a merchant, where the
cook saw him, and, being an ill-natured hussy, ordered
him to go about his business or she would scald him.
At this time Mr. Fitzwarren came from the Exchange,
and began also to scold at the poor boy, bidding him to
go to work.

Whittington answered that he should be glad to work
if anybody would employ him, and that he should be
able if he could get some victuals to eat, for he had had
nothing for three days, and he was a poor country boy,
and knew nobody, and nobody would employ him.

He then endeavored to get up, but he was so very weak
that he fell down again, which excited so much compassion
in the merchant that he ordered the servants to
take him in and give him some meat and drink, and let
him help the cook to do any dirty work that she had to
set him about. People are too apt to reproach those who
beg with being idle, but give themselves no concern to
put them in the way of getting business to do, or
considering whether they are able to do it, which is not

But we return to Whittington, who could have lived
happy in this worthy family had he not been bumped
about by the cross cook, who must be always roasting
and basting, or when the spit was idle employed her
hands upon poor Whittington! At last Miss Alice, his
master's daughter, was informed of it, and then she took
compassion on the poor boy, and made the servants treat
him kindly.

Besides the crossness of the cook, Whittington had
another difficulty to get over before he could be happy.
He had, by order of his master, a flock-bed placed for
him in a garret, where there was a number of rats and
mice that often ran over the poor boy's nose and
disturbed him in his sleep. After some time, however,
a gentleman who came to his master's house gave
Whittington a penny for brushing his shoes. This he put
into his pocket, being determined to lay it out to the
best advantage; and the next day, seeing a woman in
the street with a cat under her arm, he ran up to know
the price of it. The woman (as the cat was a good
mouser) asked a deal of money for it, but on Whittington's
telling her he had but a penny in the world, and
that he wanted a cat sadly, she let him have it.

This cat Whittington concealed in the garret, for fear
she should be beat about by his mortal enemy the cook,
and here she soon killed or frightened away the rats and
mice, so that the poor boy could now sleep as sound as a

Soon after this the merchant, who had a ship ready
to sail, called for his servants, as his custom was, in
order that each of them might venture something to try
their luck; and whatever they sent was to pay neither
freight nor custom, for he thought justly that God
Almighty would bless him the more for his readiness to let
the poor partake of his fortune.

All the servants appeared but poor Whittington, who,
having neither money nor goods, could not think of sending
anything to try his luck; but his good friend Miss
Alice, thinking his poverty kept him away, ordered him
to be called.

She then offered to lay down something for him, but
the merchant told his daughter that would not do, it
must be something of his own. Upon which poor Whittington
said he had nothing but a cat which he bought
for a penny that was given him. "Fetch thy cat, boy,"
said the merchant, "and send her." Whittington brought
poor puss and delivered her to the captain, with tears in
his eyes, for he said he should now be disturbed by the
rats and mice as much as ever. All the company laughed
at the adventure but Miss Alice, who pitied the poor
boy, and gave him something to buy another cat.

While puss was beating the billows at sea, poor
Whittington was severely beaten at home by his tyrannical
mistress the cook, who used him so cruelly, and made
such game of him for sending his cat to sea, that at last
the poor boy determined to run away from his place, and
having packed up the few things he had, he set out very
early in the morning on All-Hallows day. He traveled
as far as Holloway, and there sat down on a stone to
consider what course he should take; but while he was thus
ruminating, Bow bells, of which there were only six,
began to ring; and he thought their sounds addressed
him in this manner:

  "Turn again, Whittington,
  Thrice Lord Mayor of London."

"Lord Mayor of London!" said he to himself, "what
would not one endure to be Lord Mayor of London, and
ride in such a fine coach? Well, I'll go back again, and
bear all the pummelling and ill-usage of Cicely rather
than miss the opportunity of being Lord Mayor!" So
home he went, and happily got into the house and about
his business before Mrs. Cicely made her appearance.

We must now follow Miss Puss to the coast of Africa.
How perilous are voyages at sea, how uncertain the winds
and the waves, and how many accidents attend a naval

The ship that had the cat on board was long beaten at
sea, and at last, by contrary winds, driven on a part of
the coast of Barbary which was inhabited by Moors
unknown to the English. These people received our
countrymen with civility, and therefore the captain,
in order to trade with them, showed them the patterns
of the goods he had on board, and sent some of them to
the King of the country, who was so well pleased that
he sent for the captain and the factor to come to his
palace, which was about a mile from the sea. Here they
were placed, according to the custom of the country,
on rich carpets, flowered with gold and silver; and the
King and Queen being seated at the upper end of the
room, dinner was brought in, which consisted of many
dishes; but no sooner were the dishes put down but an
amazing number of rats and mice came from all quarters
and devoured all the meat in an instant.

The factor, in surprise, turned round to the nobles and
asked if these vermin were not offensive. "Oh! yes,"
said they, "very offensive; and the King would give half
his treasure to be freed of them, for they not only
destroy his dinner, as you see, but they assault him in his
chamber, and even in bed, so that he is obliged to be
watched while he is sleeping, for fear of them."

The factor jumped for joy; he remembered poor
Whittington and his cat, and told the King he had a creature
on board the ship that would despatch all these vermin
immediately. The King's heart heaved so high at the
joy which this news gave him that his turban dropped off
his head. "Bring this creature to me," said he; "vermin
are dreadful in a court, and if she will perform what you
say I will load your ship with gold and jewels in exchange
for her." The factor, who knew his business, took this
opportunity to set forth the merits of Miss Puss. He
told his Majesty that it would be inconvenient to part
with her, as, when she was gone, the rats and mice might
destroy the goods in the ship--but to oblige his Majesty
he would fetch her. "Run, run," said the Queen; "I am
impatient to see the dear creature."

Away flew the factor, while another dinner was
providing, and returned with the cat just as the rats and
mice were devouring that also. He immediately put
down Miss Puss, who killed a great number of them.

The King rejoiced greatly to see his old enemies
destroyed by so small a creature, and the Queen was highly
pleased, and desired the cat might be brought near that
she might look at her. Upon which the factor called
"Pussy, pussy, pussy!" and she came to him. He then
presented her to the Queen, who started back, and was
afraid to touch a creature who had made such havoc
among the rats and mice; however, when the factor
stroked the cat and called "Pussy, pussy!" the Queen
also touched her and cried "Putty, putty!" for she had
not learned English.

He then put her down on the Queen's lap, where she,
purring, played with her Majesty's hand, and then sang
herself to sleep.

The King, having seen the exploits of Miss Puss, and
being informed that her kittens would stock the whole
country, bargained with the captain and factor for the
whole ship's cargo, and then gave them ten times as
much for the cat as all the rest amounted to. On which,
taking leave of their Majesties and other great personages
at court, they sailed with a fair wind for England,
whither we must now attend them.

The morn had scarcely dawned when Mr. Fitzwarren
arose to count over the cash and settle the business for
that day. He had just entered the counting-house, and
seated himself at the desk, when somebody came, tap,
tap, at the door. "Who's there?" said Mr. Fitzwarren.
"A friend," answered the other. "What friend can come
at this unseasonable time?" "A real friend is never
unseasonable," answered the other. "I come to bring you
good news of your ship Unicorn." The merchant
bustled up in such a hurry that he forgot his gout;
instantly opened the door, and who should be seen waiting
but the captain and factor, with a cabinet of jewels, and
a bill of lading, for which the merchant lifted up his eyes
and thanked heaven for sending him such a prosperous
voyage. Then they told him the adventures of the cat,
and showed him the cabinet of jewels which they had
brought for Mr. Whittington. Upon which he cried out
with great earnestness, but not in the most poetical

  "Go, send him in, and tell him of his fame,
  And call him Mr. Whittington by name."

It is not our business to animadvert upon these lines;
we are not critics, but historians. It is sufficient for us
that they are the words of Mr. Fitzwarren; and though
it is beside our purpose, and perhaps not in our power to
prove him a good poet, we shall soon convince the reader
that he was a good man, which was a much better character;
for when some who were present told him that this
treasure was too much for such a poor boy as Whittington,
he said: "God forbid that I should deprive him of
a penny; it is his own, and he shall have it to a farthing."
He then ordered Mr. Whittington in, who was at this
time cleaning the kitchen and would have excused himself
from going into the counting-house, saying the room
was swept and his shoes were dirty and full of hob-nails.
The merchant, however, made him come in, and ordered
a chair to be set for him. Upon which, thinking they
intended to make sport of him, as had been too often the
case in the kitchen, he besought his master not to mock
a poor simple fellow, who intended them no harm, but
let him go about his business. The merchant, taking
him by the hand, said: "Indeed, Mr. Whittington, I am
in earnest with you, and sent for you to congratulate
you on your great success. Your cat has procured you
more money than I am worth in the world, and may you
long enjoy it and be happy!"

At length, being shown the treasure, and convinced
by them that all of it belonged to him, he fell upon his
knees and thanked the Almighty for his providential care
of such a poor and miserable creature. He then laid all
the treasure at his master's feet, who refused to take any
part of it, but told him he heartily rejoiced at his
prosperity, and hoped the wealth he had acquired would be a
comfort to him, and would make him happy. He then
applied to his mistress, and to his good friend Miss Alice,
who refused to take any part of the money, but told him
she heartily rejoiced at his good success, and wished him
all imaginable felicity. He then gratified the captain,
factor, and the ship's crew for the care they had taken of
his cargo. He likewise distributed presents to all the
servants in the house, not forgetting even his old enemy
the cook, though she little deserved it.

After this Mr. Fitzwarren advised Mr. Whittington to
send for the necessary people and dress himself like a
gentleman, and made him the offer of his house to live
in till he could provide himself with a better.

Now it came to pass when Mr. Whittington's face was
washed, his hair curled, and he dressed in a rich suit of
clothes, that he turned out a genteel young fellow; and,
as wealth contributes much to give a man confidence, he
in a little time dropped that sheepish behavior which was
principally occasioned by a depression of spirits, and soon
grew a sprightly and good companion, insomuch that
Miss Alice, who had formerly pitied him, now fell in love
with him.

When her father perceived they had this good liking
for each other he proposed a match between them, to
which both parties cheerfully consented, and the Lord
Mayor, Court of Aldermen, Sheriffs, the Company of
Stationers, the Royal Academy of Arts, and a number
of eminent merchants attended the ceremony, and were
elegantly treated at an entertainment made for that purpose.

History further relates that they lived very happy, had
several children, and died at a good old age. Mr.
Whittington served as Sheriff of London and was three times
Lord Mayor. In the last year of his mayoralty he
entertained King Henry V and his Queen, after his
conquest of France, upon which occasion the King, in
consideration of Whittington's merit, said: "Never had
prince such a subject"; which being told to Whittington
at the table, he replied: "Never had subject such a king."
His Majesty, out of respect to his good character,
conferred the honor of knighthood on him soon after.

Sir Richard many years before his death constantly fed
a great number of poor citizens, built a church and a college
to it, with a yearly allowance for poor scholars, and near
it erected a hospital.

He also built Newgate for criminals, and gave liberally
to St. Bartholomew's Hospital and other public charities.


Once upon a time--in the days when the fairies lived--there
was a king who had three daughters, who were all
young, and clever, and beautiful; but the youngest of the
three, who was called Miranda, was the prettiest and
the most beloved.

The King, her father, gave her more dresses and jewels
in a month than he gave the others in a year; but she was
so generous that she shared everything with her sisters,
and they were all as happy and as fond of one another as
they could be.

Now, the King had some quarrelsome neighbors, who,
tired of leaving him in peace, began to make war upon
him so fiercely that he feared he would be altogether
beaten if he did not make an effort to defend himself.
So he collected a great army and set off to fight them,
leaving the Princesses with their governess in a castle
where news of the war was brought every day--sometimes
that the King had taken a town, or won a battle,
and, at last, that he had altogether overcome his enemies
and chased them out of his kingdom, and was coming
back to the castle as quickly as possible, to see his dear
little Miranda whom he loved so much.

The three Princesses put on dresses of satin, which they
had had made on purpose for this great occasion, one
green, one blue, and the third white; their jewels were
the same colors. The eldest wore emeralds, the second
turquoises, and the youngest diamonds, and thus adorned
they went to meet the King, singing verses which they
had composed about his victories.

When he saw them all so beautiful and so gay he
embraced them tenderly, but gave Miranda more kisses than
either of the others.

Presently a splendid banquet was served, and the King
and his daughters sat down to it, and as he always
thought that there was some special meaning in everything,
he said to the eldest:

"Tell me why you have chosen a green dress."

"Sire," she answered, "having heard of your victories
I thought that green would signify my joy and the hope
of your speedy return."

"That is a very good answer," said the King; "and you,
my daughter," he continued, "why did you take a blue

"Sire," said the Princess, "to show that we constantly
hoped for your success, and that the sight of you is as
welcome to me as the sky with its most beautiful stars."

"Why," said the King, "your wise answers astonish
me, and you, Miranda. What made you dress yourself
all in white?

"Because, sire," she answered, "white suits me better
than anything else."

"What!" said the King angrily, "was that all you
thought of, vain child?"

"I thought you would be pleased with me," said the
Princess; "that was all."

The King, who loved her, was satisfied with this, and
even pretended to be pleased that she had not told him
all her reasons at first.

"And now," said he, "as I have supped well, and it is
not time yet to go to bed, tell me what you dreamed last

The eldest said she had dreamed that he brought her a
dress, and the precious stones and gold embroidery on
it were brighter than the sun.

The dream of the second was that the King had brought
her a spinning wheel and a distaff, that she might spin
him some shirts.

But the youngest said: "I dreamed that my second
sister was to be married, and on her wedding-day, you,
father, held a golden ewer and said: 'Come, Miranda,
and I will hold the water that you may dip your hands
in it.'"

The King was very angry indeed when he heard this
dream, and frowned horribly; indeed, he made such an
ugly face that everyone knew how angry he was, and he
got up and went off to bed in a great hurry; but he could
not forget his daughter's dream.

"Does the proud girl wish to make me her slave?" he
said to himself. "I am not surprised at her choosing to
dress herself in white satin without a thought of me.
She does not think me worthy of her consideration! But
I will soon put an end to her pretensions!"

He rose in a fury, and although it was not yet
daylight, he sent for the Captain of his Bodyguard, and said
to him:

"You have heard the Princess Miranda's dream? I
consider that it means strange things against me, therefore
I order you to take her away into the forest and kill
her, and, that I may be sure it is done, you must bring
me her heart and her tongue. If you attempt to deceive
me you shall be put to death!"

The Captain of the Guard was very much astonished
when he heard this barbarous order, but he did not dare
to contradict the King for fear of making him still more
angry, or causing him to send someone else, so he
answered that he would fetch the Princess and do as the
King had said. When he went to her room they would
hardly let him in, it was so early, but he said that the
King had sent for Miranda, and she got up quickly and
came out; a little black girl called Patypata held up her
train, and her pet monkey and her little dog ran after
her. The monkey was called Grabugeon, and the little
dog Tintin.

The Captain of the Guard begged Miranda to come
down into the garden where the King was enjoying the
fresh air, and when they got there, he pretended to search
for him, but as he was not to be found, he said:

"No doubt his Majesty has strolled into the forest,"
and he opened the little door that led to it and they went

By this time the daylight had begun to appear, and
the Princess, looking at her conductor, saw that he had
tears in his eyes and seemed too sad to speak.

"What is the matter?" she said in the kindest way.
"You seem very sorrowful."

"Alas! Princess," he answered, "who would not be
sorrowful who was ordered to do such a terrible thing as
I am? The King has commanded me to kill you here,
and carry your heart and your tongue to him, and if I
disobey I shall lose my life."

The poor Princess was terrified, she grew very pale and
began to cry softly.

Looking up at the Captain of the Guard with her
beautiful eyes, she said gently:

Will you really have the heart to kill me? I have
never done you any harm, and have always spoken well
of you to the King. If I had deserved my father's anger
I would suffer without a murmur, but, alas! he is unjust
to complain of me, when I have always treated him with
love and respect."

"Fear nothing, Princess," said the Captain of the
Guard. "I would far rather die myself than hurt you;
but even if I am killed you will not be safe: we must find
some way of making the King believe that you are dead."

"What can we do?" said Miranda; "unless you take
him my heart and my tongue he will never believe you."

The Princess and the Captain of the Guard were talking
so earnestly that they did not think of Patypata,
but she had overheard all they said, and now came and
threw herself at Miranda's feet.

"Madam," she said, "I offer you my life; let me be
killed, I shall be only too happy to die for such a kind

"Why, Patypata," cried the Princess, kissing her,
"that would never do; your life is as precious to me as
my own, especially after such a proof of your affection
as you have just given me."

"You are right, Princess," said Grabugeon, coming
forward, "to love such a faithful slave as Patypata; she
is of more use to you than I am, I offer you my tongue
and my heart most willingly, especially as I wish to
make a great name for myself in Goblin Land."

"No, no, my little Grabugeon," replied Miranda, "I
cannot bear the thought of taking your life."

"Such a good little dog as I am," cried Tintin, "could
not think of letting either of you die for his mistress. If
anyone is to die for her it must be me."

And then began a great dispute between Patypata,
Grabugeon, and Tintin, and they came to high words,
until at last Grabugeon, who was quicker than the
others, ran up to the very top of the nearest tree, and
let herself fall, head first, to the ground, and there she
lay--quite dead!

The Princess was very sorry, but as Grabugeon was
really dead, she allowed the Captain of the Guard to
take her tongue; but, alas! it was such a little one--not
bigger than the Princess's thumb--that they decided
sorrowfully that it was of no use at all: the King would
not have been taken in by it for a moment!

"Alas! my little monkey," cried the Princess, "I have
lost you, and yet I am no better off than I was before."

"The honor of saving your life is to be mine,"
interrupted Patypata, and, before they could prevent her,
she had picked up a knife and cut her head off in an instant.

But when the Captain of the Guard would have taken
her tongue it turned out to be quite black, so that would
not have deceived the King either.

"Am I not unlucky?" cried the poor Princess; "I lose
everything I love, and am none the better for it."

"If you had accepted my offer," said Tintin, "you
would only have had me to regret, and I should have had
all your gratitude."

Miranda kissed her little dog, crying so bitterly, that
at last she could bear it no longer, and turned away into
the forest. When she looked back the Captain of the
Guard was gone, and she was alone, except for Patypata,
Grabugeon, and Tintin, who lay upon the ground. She
could not leave the place until she had buried them in a
pretty little mossy grave at the foot of a tree, and she
wrote their names upon the bark of the tree, and how
they had all died to save her life. And then she began
to think where she could go for safety--for this forest
was so close to her father's castle that she might be seen
and recognized by the first passer-by, and, besides that,
it was full of lions and wolves, who would have snapped
up a princess just as soon as a stray chicken. So she
began to walk as fast as she could, but the forest was so
large and the sun was so hot that she nearly died of heat
and terror and fatigue; look which way she would there
seemed to be no end to the forest, and she was so frightened
that she fancied every minute that she heard the
King running after her to kill her. You may imagine
how miserable she was, and how she cried as she went
on, not knowing which path to follow, and with the
thorny bushes scratching her dreadfully and tearing her
pretty frock to pieces.

At last she heard the bleating of a sheep, and said to

"No doubt there are shepherds here with their flocks;
they will show me the way to some village where I can
live disguised as a peasant girl. Alas! it is not always
kings and princes who are the happiest people in the
world. Who could have believed that I should ever be
obliged to run away and hide because the King, for no
reason at all, wishes to kill me?"

So saying she advanced toward the place where she
heard the bleating, but what was her surprise when, in a
lovely little glade quite surrounded by trees, she saw a
large sheep; its wool was as white as snow, and its horns
shone like gold; it had a garland of flowers round its
neck, and strings of great pearls about its legs, and a
collar of diamonds; it lay upon a bank of orange-flowers,
under a canopy of cloth of gold which protected it from
the heat of the sun. Nearly a hundred other sheep were
scattered about, not eating the grass, but some drinking
coffee, lemonade, or sherbet, others eating ices,
strawberries and cream, or sweetmeats, while others, again,
were playing games. Many of them wore golden collars
with jewels, flowers, and ribbons.

Miranda stopped short in amazement at this unexpected
sight, and was looking in all directions for the
shepherd of this surprising flock, when the beautiful
sheep came bounding toward her.

"Approach, lovely Princess," he cried; "have no fear
of such gentle and peaceable animals as we are."

"What a marvel!" cried the Princess, starting back a
little. "Here is a sheep that can talk."

"Your monkey and your dog could talk, madam," said
he; "are you more astonished at us than at them?"

"A fairy gave them the power to speak," replied
Miranda. "So I was used to them."

"Perhaps the same thing has happened to us," he said,
smiling sheepishly. "But, Princess, what can have led
you here?"

"A thousand misfortunes, Sir Sheep," she answered.

"I am the unhappiest princess in the world, and I am
seeking a shelter against my father's anger."

"Come with me, madam," said the Sheep; "I offer you
a hiding-place which you only will know of, and where
you will be mistress of everything you see."

"I really cannot follow you," said Miranda, "for I am
too tired to walk another step."

The Sheep with the golden horns ordered that his
chariot should be fetched, and a moment after appeared
six goats, harnessed to a pumpkin, which was so big that
two people could quite well sit in it, and was all lined
with cushions of velvet and down. The Princess stepped
into it, much amused at such a new kind of carriage, the
King of the Sheep took his place beside her, and the
goats ran away with them at full speed, and only stopped
when they reached a cavern, the entrance to which was
blocked by a great stone. This the King touched with
his foot, and immediately it fell down, and he invited
the Princess to enter without fear. Now, if she had not
been so alarmed by everything that had happened, nothing
could have induced her to go into this frightful cave,
but she was so afraid of what might be behind her that
she would have thrown herself even down a well at this
moment. So, without hesitation, she followed the Sheep,
who went before her, down, down, down, until she
thought they must come out at the other side of the
world--indeed, she was not sure that he wasn't leading
her into Fairyland. At last she saw before her a great
plain, quite covered with all sorts of flowers, the scent of
which seemed to her nicer than anything she had ever
smelled before; a broad river of orange-flower water
flowed round it and fountains of wine of every kind ran
in all directions and made the prettiest little cascades and
brooks. The plain was covered with the strangest trees,
there were whole avenues where partridges, ready
roasted, hung from every branch, or, if you preferred
pheasants, quails, turkeys, or rabbits, you had only to
turn to the right hand or to the left and you were sure to
find them. In places the air was darkened by showers
of lobster-patties, white puddings, sausages, tarts, and
all sorts of sweetmeats, or with pieces of gold and silver,
diamonds and pearls. This unusual kind of rain, and
the pleasantness of the whole place, would, no doubt,
have attracted numbers of people to it, if the King of the
Sheep had been of a more sociable disposition, but from
all accounts it is evident that he was as grave as a judge.

As it was quite the nicest time of the year when
Miranda arrived in this delightful land the only palace she
saw was a long row of orange trees, jasmines, honeysuckles,
and musk-roses, and their interlacing branches
made the prettiest rooms possible, which were hung with
gold and silver gauze, and had great mirrors and
candlesticks, and most beautiful pictures. The Wonderful
Sheep begged that the Princess would consider herself
queen over all that she saw, and assured her that, though
for some years he had been very sad and in great trouble,
she had it in her power to make him forget all his grief.

"You are so kind and generous, noble Sheep," said the
Princess, "that I cannot thank you enough, but I must
confess that all I see here seems to me so extraordinary
that I don't know what to think of it."

As she spoke a band of lovely fairies came up and
offered her amber baskets full of fruit, but when she held
out her hands to them they glided away, and she could
feel nothing when she tried to touch them.

"Oh!" she cried, "what can they be? Whom am I
with?" and she began to cry.

At this instant the King of the Sheep came back to
her, and was so distracted to find her in tears that he
could have torn his wool.

"What is the matter, lovely Princess?" he cried. "Has
anyone failed to treat you with due respect?"

"Oh! no," said Miranda; "only I am not used to living
with sprites and with sheep that talk, and everything
here frightens me. It was very kind of you to bring
me to this place, but I shall be even more grateful to you
if you will take me up into the world again."

"Do not be afraid," said the Wonderful Sheep; "I
entreat you to have patience, and listen to the story of
my misfortunes. I was once a king, and my kingdom
was the most splendid in the world. My subjects loved
me, my neighbors envied and feared me. I was respected
by everyone, and it was said that no king ever
deserved it more.

"I was very fond of hunting, and one day, while chasing
a stag, I left my attendants far behind; suddenly I
saw the animal leap into a pool of water, and I rashly
urged my horse to follow it, but before we had gone many
steps I felt an extraordinary heat, instead of the coolness
of the water; the pond dried up, a great gulf opened
before me, out of which flames of fire shot up, and I fell
helplessly to the bottom of a precipice.

"I gave myself up for lost, but presently a voice said:
'Ungrateful Prince, even this fire is hardly enough to
warm your cold heart!'

"'Who complains of my coldness in this dismal place?'
I cried.

"'An unhappy being who loves you hopelessly,'
replied the voice, and at the same moment the flames began
to flicker and cease to burn, and I saw a fairy, whom I
had known as long as I could remember, and whose ugliness
had always horrified me. She was leaning upon the
arm of a most beautiful young girl, who wore chains of
gold on her wrists and was evidently her slave.

"'Why, Ragotte,' I said, for that was the fairy's name,
'what is the meaning of all this? Is it by your orders
that I am here?'

"'And whose fault is it,' she answered, 'that you have
never understood me until now? Must a powerful fairy
like myself condescend to explain her doings to you who
are no better than an ant by comparison, though you
think yourself a great king?'

"'Call me what you like,' I said impatiently; 'but
what is it that you want--my crown, or my cities, or my

"'Treasures!' said the fairy, disdainfully. 'If I chose
I could make any one of my scullions richer and more
powerful than you. I do not want your treasures, but,'
she added softly, 'if you will give me your heart--if you
will marry me--I will add twenty kingdoms to the one
you have already; you shall have a hundred castles full of
gold and five hundred full of silver, and, in short,
anything you like to ask me for.'

"'Madam Ragotte,' said I, 'when one is at the bottom
of a pit where one has fully expected to be roasted alive,
it is impossible to think of asking such a charming person
as you are to marry one! I beg that you will set me
at liberty, and then I shall hope to answer you fittingly.'

"'Ah!' said she, 'if you really loved me you would not
care where you were--a cave, a wood, a fox-hole, a
desert, would please you equally well. Do not think
that you can deceive me; you fancy you are going to
escape, but I assure you that you are going to stay here
and the first thing I shall give you to do will be to keep my
sheep--they are very good company and speak quite as
well as you do.

"As she spoke she advanced, and led me to this plain
where we now stand, and showed me her flock, but I paid
little attention to it or to her.

"To tell the truth, I was so lost in admiration of her
beautiful slave that I forgot everything else, and the
cruel Ragotte, perceiving this, turned upon her so furious
and terrible a look that she fell lifeless to the ground.

"At this dreadful sight I drew my sword and rushed at
Ragotte, and should certainly have cut off her head had
she not by her magic arts chained me to the spot on
which I stood; all my efforts to move were useless, and
at last, when I threw myself down on the ground in
despair, she said to me, with a scornful smile:

"'I intend to make you feel my power. It seems that
you are a lion at present, I mean you to be a sheep.'

"So saying, she touched me with her wand, and I
became what you see. I did not lose the power of speech,
or of feeling the misery of my present state.

"'For five years,' she said, 'you shall be a sheep, and
lord of this pleasant land, while I, no longer able to see
your face, which I loved so much, shall be better able to
hate you as you deserve to be hated.'

"She disappeared as she finished speaking, and if I had
not been too unhappy to care about anything I should
have been glad that she was gone.

"The talking sheep received me as their king, and told
me that they, too, were unfortunate princes who had, in
different ways, offended the revengeful fairy, and had
been added to her flock for a certain number of years;
some more, some less. From time to time, indeed, one
regains his own proper form and goes back again to his
place in the upper world; but the other beings whom you
saw are the rivals or the enemies of Ragotte, whom she has
imprisoned for a hundred years or so; though even they
will go back at last. The young slave of whom I told
you about is one of these; I have seen her often, and it
has been a great pleasure to me. She never speaks to
me, and if I were nearer to her I know I should find her
only a shadow, which would be very annoying. However,
I noticed that one of my companions in misfortune
was also very attentive to this little sprite, and I found out
that he had been her lover, whom the cruel Ragotte had
taken away from her long before; since then I have cared
for, and thought of, nothing but how I might regain my
freedom. I have often been in the forest; that is where
I have seen you, lovely Princess, sometimes driving your
chariot, which you did with all the grace and skill in the
world; sometimes riding to the chase on so spirited a
horse that it seemed as if no one but yourself could have
managed it, and sometimes running races on the plain
with the Princesses of your Court--running so lightly
that it was you always who won the prize. Oh! Princess,
I have loved you so long, and yet how dare I tell you of
my love! what hope can there be for an unhappy sheep
like myself?"

Miranda was so surprised and confused by all that she
had heard that she hardly knew what answer to give to
the King of the Sheep, but she managed to make some
kind of little speech, which certainly did not forbid him
to hope, and said that she should not be afraid of the
shadows now she knew that they would some day come
to life again. "Alas!" she continued, "if my poor
Patypata, my dear Grabugeon, and pretty little Tintin, who
all died for my sake, were equally well off, I should have
nothing left to wish for here!"

Prisoner though he was, the King of the Sheep had
still some powers and privileges.

"Go," said he to his Master of the Horse, "go and
seek the shadows of the little black girl, the monkey, and
the dog: they will amuse our Princess."

And an instant afterward Miranda saw them coming
toward her, and their presence gave her the greatest
pleasure, though they did not come near enough for her
to touch them.

The King of the Sheep was so kind and amusing, and
loved Miranda so dearly, that at last she began to love
him too. Such a handsome sheep, who was so polite
and considerate, could hardly fail to please, especially
if one knew that he was really a king, and that his strange
imprisonment would soon come to an end. So the Princess's
days passed very gaily while she waited for the
happy time to come. The King of the Sheep, with the
help of all the flock, got up balls, concerts, and hunting
parties, and even the shadows joined in all the fun, and
came, making believe to be their own real selves.

One evening, when the couriers arrived (for the King
sent most carefully for news--and they always brought
the very best kinds), it was announced that the sister of
the Princess Miranda was going to be married to a great
Prince, and that nothing could be more splendid than all
the preparations for the wedding.

"Ah!" cried the young Princess, "how unlucky I am
to miss the sight of so many pretty things! Here am I
imprisoned under the earth, with no company but sheep
and shadows, while my sister is to be adorned like a
queen and surrounded by all who love and admire her,
and everyone but myself can go to wish her joy!"

"Why do you complain, Princess?" said the King of
the Sheep. "Did I say that you were not to go to the
wedding? Set out as soon as you please; only promise
me that you will come back, for I love you too much to
be able to live without you."

Miranda was very grateful to him, and promised
faithfully that nothing in the world should keep her from
coming back. The King caused an escort suitable to her
rank to be got ready for her, and she dressed herself
splendidly, not forgetting anything that could make her
more beautiful. Her chariot was of mother-of-pearl,
drawn by six dun-colored griffins just brought from the
other side of the world, and she was attended by a
number of guards in splendid uniforms, who were all at least
eight feet high and had come from far and near to ride
in the Princess's train.

Miranda reached her father's palace just as the
wedding ceremony began, and everyone, as soon as she came
in, was struck with surprise at her beauty and the
splendor of her jewels. She heard exclamations of
admiration on all sides; and the King her father looked at
her so attentively that she was afraid he must recognize
her; but he was so sure that she was dead that the idea
never occurred to him.

However, the fear of not getting away made her leave
before the marriage was over. She went out hastily,
leaving behind her a little coral casket set with emeralds.
On it was written in diamond letters: "Jewels for the
Bride," and when they opened it, which they did as soon
as it was found, there seemed to be no end to the pretty
things it contained. The King, who had hoped to join
the unknown Princess and find out who she was, was
dreadfully disappointed when she disappeared so
suddenly, and gave orders that if she ever came again the
doors were to be shut that she might not get away so
easily. Short as Miranda's absence had been, it had
seemed like a hundred years to the King of the Sheep.
He was waiting for her by a fountain in the thickest part
of the forest, and the ground was strewn with splendid
presents which he had prepared for her to show his joy
and gratitude at her coming back.

As soon as she was in sight he rushed to meet her,
leaping and bounding like a real sheep. He caressed her
tenderly, throwing himself at her feet and kissing her
hands, and told her how uneasy he had been in her
absence, and how impatient for her return, with an
eloquence which charmed her.

After some time came the news that the King's second
daughter was going to be married. When Miranda heard
it she begged the King of the Sheep to allow her to go and
see the wedding as before. This request made him feel
very sad, as if some misfortune must surely come of it,
but his love for the Princess being stronger than anything
else he did not like to refuse her.

"You wish to leave me, Princess," said he; "it is my
unhappy fate--you are not to blame. I consent to your
going, but, believe me, I can give you no stronger proof
of my love than by so doing."

The Princess assured him that she would only stay a
very short time, as she had done before, and begged him
not to be uneasy, as she would be quite as much grieved
if anything detained her as he could possibly be.

So, with the same escort, she set out, and reached the
palace as the marriage ceremony began. Everybody was
delighted to see her; she was so pretty that they thought
she must be some fairy princess, and the Princes who were
there could not take their eyes off her.

The King was more glad than anyone else that she had
come again, and gave orders that the doors should all be
shut and bolted that very minute. When the wedding
was all but over the Princess got up quickly, hoping to
slip away unnoticed among the crowd, but, to her great
dismay, she found every door fastened.

She felt more at ease when the King came up to her, and
with the greatest respect begged her not to run away so
soon, but at least to honor him by staying for the splendid
feast which was prepared for the Princes and Princesses.
He led her into a magnificent hall, where all the Court was
assembled, and himself taking up the golden bowl full of
water, he offered it to her that she might dip her pretty
fingers into it.

At this the Princess could no longer contain herself;
throwing herself at the King's feet, she cried out:

"My dream has come true after all--you have offered
me water to wash my hands on my sister's wedding day,
and it has not vexed you to do it."

The King recognized her at once--indeed, he had
already thought several times how much like his poor little
Miranda she was.

"Oh! my dear daughter," he cried, kissing her, "can you
ever forget my cruelty? I ordered you to be put to death
because I thought your dream portended the loss of my
crown. And so it did," he added, "for now your sisters
are both married and have kingdoms of their own--and
mine shall be for you." So saying he put his crown on the
Princess's head and cried:

"Long live Queen Miranda!"

All the Court cried: "Long live Queen Miranda!" after him,
and the young Queen's two sisters came running up, and
threw their arms round her neck, and kissed her a thousand
times, and then there was such a laughing and crying,
talking and kissing, all at once, and Miranda thanked her
father, and began to ask after everyone--particularly the
Captain of the Guard, to whom she owed so much; but, to
her great sorrow, she heard that he was dead. Presently
they sat down to the banquet, and the King asked Miranda
to tell them all that had happened to her since the
terrible morning when he had sent the Captain of the
Guard to fetch her. This she did with so much spirit
that all the guests listened with breathless interest.
But while she was thus enjoying herself with the King
and her sisters, the King of the Sheep was waiting
impatiently for the time of her return, and when it
came and went, and no Princess appeared, his anxiety
became so great that he could bear it no longer.

"She is not coming back any more," he cried. "My
miserable sheep's face displeases her, and without
Miranda what is left to me, wretched creature that I am!
Oh! cruel Ragotte; my punishment is complete."

For a long time he bewailed his sad fate like this, and
then, seeing that it was growing dark, and that still there
was no sign of the Princess, he set out as fast as he could
in the direction of the town. When he reached the palace
he asked for Miranda, but by this time everyone had
heard the story of her adventures, and did not want her
to go back again to the King of the Sheep, so they refused
sternly to let him see her. In vain he begged and prayed
them to let him in; though his entreaties might have
melted hearts of stone they did not move the guards of
the palace, and at last, quite broken-hearted, he fell dead
at their feet.

In the meantime the King, who had not the least idea
of the sad thing that was happening outside the gate of his
palace, proposed to Miranda that she should be driven in
her chariot all round the town, which was to be illuminated
with thousands and thousands of torches, placed in
windows and balconies, and in all the grand squares.
But what a sight met her eyes at the very entrance of the
palace! There lay her dear, kind sheep, silent and motionless,
upon the pavement!

She threw herself out of the chariot and ran to him,
crying bitterly, for she realized that her broken promise
had cost him his life, and for a long, long time she was so
unhappy that they thought she would have died too.

So you see that even a princess is not always happy--especially
if she forgets to keep her word; and the greatest
misfortunes often happen to people just as they think they
have obtained their heart's desires![1]

[1] Madame d'Aulnoy.


There was, once upon a time, a man and his wife
fagot-makers by trade, who had several children, all boys.
The eldest was but ten years old, and the youngest only

They were very poor, and their seven children incommoded
them greatly, because not one of them was able to
earn his bread. That which gave them yet more uneasiness
was that the youngest was of a very puny constitution,
and scarce ever spoke a word, which made them take
that for stupidity which was a sign of good sense. He
was very little, and when born no bigger than one's
thumb, which made him be called Little Thumb.

The poor child bore the blame of whatsoever was done
amiss in the house, and, guilty or not, was always in the
wrong; he was, notwithstanding, more cunning and had a
far greater share of wisdom than all his brothers put
together; and, if he spake little, he heard and thought the

There happened now to come a very bad year, and the
famine was so great that these poor people resolved to rid
themselves of their children. One evening, when they
were all in bed and the fagot-maker was sitting with his
wife at the fire, he said to her, with his heart ready to
burst with grief:

"Thou seest plainly that we are not able to keep our
children, and I cannot see them starve to death before
my face; I am resolved to lose them in the wood to-morrow,
which may very easily be done; for, while they are busy
in tying up fagots, we may run away, and leave them,
without their taking any notice."

"Ah!" cried his wife; "and canst thou thyself have the
heart to take thy children out along with thee on purpose
to lose them?"

In vain did her husband represent to her their extreme
poverty: she would not consent to it; she was indeed poor,
but she was their mother. However, having considered
what a grief it would be to her to see them perish with
hunger, she at last consented, and went to bed all in tears.

Little Thumb heard every word that had been spoken;
for observing, as he lay in his bed, that they were talking
very busily, he got up softly, and hid himself under his
father's stool, that he might hear what they said without
being seen. He went to bed again, but did not sleep a
wink all the rest of the night, thinking on what he had to
do. He got up early in the morning, and went to the
river-side, where he filled his pockets full of small white
pebbles, and then returned home.

They all went abroad, but Little Thumb never told his
brothers one syllable of what he knew. They went into a
very thick forest, where they could not another at ten
paces distance. The fagot-maker began to cut wood, and
the children to gather up the sticks to make fagots. Their
father and mother, seeing them busy at their work, got
away from them insensibly, and ran away from them all
at once, along a by-way through the winding bushes.

When the children saw they were left alone, they began
to cry as loud as they could. Little Thumb let them cry
on, knowing very well how to get home again, for, as he
came, he took care to drop all along the way the little
white pebbles he had in his pockets. Then he said to them:

"Be not afraid, brothers; father and mother have left
us here, but I will lead you home again, only follow me."

They did so, and he brought them home by the very
same way they came into the forest. They dared not go
in, but sat themselves down at the door, listening to what
their father and mother were saying.

The very moment the fagot-maker and his wife reached
home the lord of the manor sent them ten crowns, which
he had owed them a long while, and which they never
expected. This gave them new life, for the poor people
were almost famished. The fagot-maker sent his wife
immediately to the butcher's. As it was a long while since
they had eaten a bit, she bought thrice as much meat as
would sup two people. When they had eaten, the woman

"Alas! where are now our poor children? they would
make a good feast of what we have left here; but it was
you, William, who had a mind to lose them: I told you we
should repent of it. What are they now doing in the
forest? Alas! dear God, the wolves have perhaps already
eaten them up; thou art very inhuman thus to have lost
thy children."

The fagot-maker grew at last quite out of patience, for
she repeated it above twenty times, that they should repent
of it, and that she was in the right of it for so saying.
He threatened to beat her if she did not hold her tongue.
It was not that the fagot-maker was not, perhaps, more
vexed than his wife, but that she teased him, and that he
was of the humor of a great many others, who love wives to
speak well, but think those very importunate who are
continually doing so. She was half-drowned in tears, crying out:

"Alas! where are now my children, my poor children?"

She spoke this so very loud that the children, who were
at the gate, began to cry out all together:

"Here we are! Here we are!"

She ran immediately to open the door, and said,
hugging them:

"I am glad to see you, my dear children; you are very
hungry and weary; and my poor Peter, thou art horribly
bemired; come in and let me clean thee."

Now, you must know that Peter was her eldest son,
whom she loved above all the rest, because he was somewhat
carroty, as she herself was. They sat down to supper,
and ate with such a good appetite as pleased both father
and mother, whom they acquainted how frightened they
were in the forest, speaking almost always all together.
The good folks were extremely glad to see their children
once more at home, and this joy continued while the ten
crowns lasted; but, when the money was all gone, they
fell again into their former uneasiness, and resolved to lose
them again; and, that they might be the surer of doing it,
to carry them to a much greater distance than before.

They could not talk of this so secretly but they were
overheard by Little Thumb, who made account to get
out of this difficulty as well as the former; but, though he
got up very early in the morning to go and pick up some
little pebbles, he was disappointed, for he found the
house-door double-locked, and was at a stand what to do. When
their father had given each of them a piece of bread for
their breakfast, Little Thumb fancied he might make use
of this instead of the pebbles by throwing it in little bits
all along the way they should pass; and so he put the
bread in his pocket.

Their father and mother brought them into the thickest
and most obscure part of the forest, when, stealing away
into a by-path, they there left them. Little Thumb was
not very uneasy at it, for he thought he could easily find
the way again by means of his bread, which he had scattered
all along as he came; but he was very much surprised
when he could not find so much as one crumb; the
birds had come and had eaten it up, every bit. They were
now in great affliction, for the farther they went the more
they were out of their way, and were more and more
bewildered in the forest.

Night now came on, and there arose a terribly high
wind, which made them dreadfully afraid. They fancied
they heard on every side of them the howling of wolves
coming to eat them up. They scarce dared to speak or
turn their heads. After this, it rained very hard, which
wetted them to the skin; their feet slipped at every step
they took, and they fell into the mire, whence they got
up in a very dirty pickle; their hands were quite benumbed.

Little Thumb climbed up to the top of a tree, to see if
he could discover anything; and having turned his head
about on every side, he saw at last a glimmering light,
like that of a candle, but a long way from the forest. He
came down, and, when upon the ground, he could see it
no more, which grieved him sadly. However, having
walked for some time with his brothers toward that side
on which he had seen the light, he perceived it again as he
came out of the wood.

They came at last to the house where this candle was,
not without an abundance of fear: for very often they lost
sight of it, which happened every time they came into a
bottom. They knocked at the door, and a good woman
came and opened it; she asked them what they would

Little Thumb told her they were poor children who had
been lost in the forest, and desired to lodge there for
God's sake.

The woman, seeing them so very pretty, began to weep,
and said to them:

"Alas! poor babies; whither are ye come? Do ye know
that this house belongs to a cruel ogre who eats up little

"Ah! dear madam," answered Little Thumb (who trembled
every joint of him, as well as his brothers), "what
shall we do? To be sure the wolves of the forest will
devour us to-night if you refuse us to lie here; and so we
would rather the gentleman should eat us; and perhaps he
may take pity upon us, especially if you please to beg it of

The Ogre's wife, who believed she could conceal them
from her husband till morning, let them come in, and
brought them to warm themselves at a very good fire; for
there was a whole sheep upon the spit, roasting for the
Ogre's supper.

As they began to be a little warm they heard three or
four great raps at the door; this was the Ogre, who had
come home. Upon this she hid them under the bed and
went to open the door. The Ogre presently asked if supper
was ready and the wine drawn, and then sat himself down
to table. The sheep was as yet all raw and bloody; but he
liked it the better for that. He sniffed about to the right
and left, saying:

"I smell fresh meat."

"What you smell so," said his wife, "must be the calf
which I have just now killed and flayed."

"I smell fresh meat, I tell thee once more," replied the
Ogre, looking crossly at his wife; "and there is something
here which I do not understand."

As he spoke these words he got up from the table and
went directly to the bed.

"Ah, ah!" said he; "I see then how thou wouldst cheat
me, thou cursed woman; I know not why I do not eat thee
up too, but it is well for thee that thou art a tough old
carrion. Here is good game, which comes very quickly
to entertain three ogres of my acquaintance who are to
pay me a visit in a day or two."

With that he dragged them out from under the bed one
by one. The poor children fell upon their knees, and
begged his pardon; but they had to do with one of the
most cruel ogres in the world, who, far from having any pity
on them, had already devoured them with his eyes, and
told his wife they would be delicate eating when tossed
up with good savory sauce. He then took a great knife,
and, coming up to these poor children, whetted it upon a
great whet-stone which he held in his left hand. He had
already taken hold of one of them when his wife said to

"Why need you do it now? Is it not time enough to-morrow?"

"Hold your prating," said the Ogre; "they will eat the

"But you have so much meat already," replied his wife,
you have no occasion; here are a calf, two sheep, and
half a hog."

"That is true," said the Ogre; "give them their belly
full that they may not fall away, and put them to bed."

The good woman was overjoyed at this, and gave them
a good supper; but they were so much afraid they could
not eat a bit. As for the Ogre, he sat down again to drink,
being highly pleased that he had got wherewithal to treat
his friends. He drank a dozen glasses more than ordinary,
which got up into his head and obliged him to go to bed.

The Ogre had seven daughters, all little children, and
these young ogresses had all of them very fine complexions,
because they used to eat fresh meat like their father;
but they had little gray eyes, quite round, hooked noses,
and very long sharp teeth, standing at a good distance
from each other. They were not as yet over and above
mischievous, but they promised very fair for it, for they
had already bitten little children, that they might suck
their blood.

They had been put to bed early, with every one a crown
of gold upon her head. There was in the same chamber a
bed of the like bigness, and it was into this bed the Ogre's
wife put the seven little boys, after which she went to bed
to her husband.

Little Thumb, who had observed that the Ogre's
daughters had crowns of gold upon their heads, and was
afraid lest the Ogre should repent his not killing them,
got up about midnight, and, taking his brothers' bonnets
and his own, went very softly and put them upon the heads
of the seven little ogresses, after having taken off their
crowns of gold, which he put upon his own head and his
brothers', that the Ogre might take them for his daughters,
and his daughters for the little boys whom he wanted to

All this succeeded according to his desire; for, the Ogre
waking about midnight, and sorry that he deferred to do
that till morning which he might have done over-night,
threw himself hastily out of bed, and, taking his great

"Let us see," said he, "how our little rogues do, and not
make two jobs of the matter."

He then went up, groping all the way, into his daughters'
chamber, and, coming to the bed where the little
boys lay, and who were every soul of them fast asleep,
except Little Thumb, who was terribly afraid when he
found the Ogre fumbling about his head, as he had done
about his brothers', the Ogre, feeling the golden crowns,

"I should have made a fine piece of work of it, truly;
I find I drank too much last night."

Then he went to the bed where the girls lay; and, having
found the boys' little bonnets,

"Ah!" said he, "my merry lads, are you there? Let us
work as we ought."

And saying these words, without more ado, he cut the
throats of all his seven daughters.

Well pleased with what he had done, he went to bed
again to his wife. So soon as Little Thumb heard the
Ogre snore, he waked his brothers, and bade them all put
on their clothes presently and follow him. They stole
down softly into the garden, and got over the wall. They
kept running about all night, and trembled all the while,
without knowing which way they went.

The Ogre, when he awoke, said to his wife: "Go
upstairs and dress those young rascals who came here last

The wife was very much surprised at this goodness of
her husband, not dreaming after what manner she should
dress them; but, thinking that he had ordered her to go
and put on their clothes, she went up, and was strangely
astonished when she perceived her seven daughters killed,
and weltering in their blood.

She fainted away, for this is the first expedient almost
all women find in such cases. The Ogre, fearing his wife
would be too long in doing what he had ordered, went up
himself to help her. He was no less amazed than his wife
at this frightful spectacle.

"Ah! what have I done?" cried he. "The wretches shall
pay for it, and that instantly."

He threw a pitcher of water upon his wife's face, and,
having brought her to herself, said:

"Give me quickly my boots of seven leagues, that I may
go and catch them."

He went out, and, having run over a vast deal of
ground, both on this side and that, he came at last into
the very road where the poor children were, and not
above a hundred paces from their father's house. They
espied the Ogre, who went at one step from mountain to
mountain, and over rivers as easily as the narrowest
kennels. Little Thumb, seeing a hollow rock near the
place where they were, made his brothers hide themselves
in it, and crowded into it himself, minding always what
would become of the Ogre.

The Ogre, who found himself much tired with his long
and fruitless journey (for these boots of seven leagues
greatly fatigued the wearer), had a great mind to rest
himself, and, by chance, went to sit down upon the rock
where the little boys had hid themselves. As it was
impossible he could be more weary than he was, he fell
asleep, and, after reposing himself some time, began to
snore so frightfully that the poor children were no less
afraid of him than when he held up his great knife and
was going to cut their throats. Little Thumb was not so
much frightened as his brothers, and told them that they
should run away immediately toward home while the
Ogre was asleep so soundly, and that they should not be in
any pain about him. They took his advice, and got home
presently. Little Thumb came up to the Ogre, pulled off
his boots gently and put them on his own legs. The boots
were very long and large, but, as they were fairies, they
had the gift of becoming big and little, according to the
legs of those who wore them; so that they fitted his feet
and legs as well as if they had been made on purpose for
him. He went immediately to the Ogre's house, where he
saw his wife crying bitterly for the loss of the Ogre's
murdered daughters.

"Your husband," said Little Thumb, "is in very great
danger, being taken by a gang of thieves, who have sworn
to kill him if he does not give them all his gold and silver.
The very moment they held their daggers at his throat he
perceived me, and desired me to come and tell you the
condition he is in, and that you should give me whatsoever
he has of value, without retaining any one thing; for
otherwise they will kill him without mercy; and, as his
case is very pressing, he desired me to make use (you see
I have them on) of his boots, that I might make the more
haste and to show you that I do not impose upon you."

The good woman, being sadly frightened, gave him all
she had: for this Ogre was a very good husband, though
he used to eat up little children. Little Thumb, having
thus got all the Ogre's money, came home to his father's
house, where he was received with abundance of joy.

There are many people who do not agree in this
circumstance, and pretend that Little Thumb never robbed
the Ogre at all, and that he only thought he might very
justly, and with a safe conscience, take off his boots of
seven leagues, because he made no other use of them but
to run after little children. These folks affirm that they
are very well assured of this, and the more as having
drunk and eaten often at the fagot-maker's house. They
aver that when Little Thumb had taken off the Ogre's
boots he went to Court, where he was informed that they
were very much in pain about a certain army, which was
two hundred leagues off, and the success of a battle. He
went, say they, to the King, and told him that, if he
desired it, he would bring him news from the army before

The King promised him a great sum of money upon that
condition. Little Thumb was as good as his word, and
returned that very same night with the news; and, this first
expedition causing him to be known, he got whatever he
pleased, for the King paid him very well for carrying his
orders to the army. After having for some time carried
on the business of a messenger, and gained thereby great
wealth, he went home to his father, where it was
impossible to express the joy they were all in at his return.
He made the whole family very easy, bought places for
his father and brothers, and, by that means, settled them
very handsomely in the world, and, in the meantime, made
his court to perfection.[1]

[1] Charles Perrault.


In a town in Persia there dwelt two brothers, one named
Cassim, the other Ali Baba. Cassim was married to a
rich wife and lived in plenty, while Ali Baba had to maintain
his wife and children by cutting wood in a neighboring
forest and selling it in the town. One day, when Ali
Baba was in the forest, he saw a troop of men on horseback,
coming toward him in a cloud of dust. He was
afraid they were robbers, and climbed into a tree for
safety. When they came up to him and dismounted, he
counted forty of them. They unbridled their horses and
tied them to trees. The finest man among them, whom
Ali Baba took to be their captain, went a little way among
some bushes, and said: "Open, Sesame!"[1] so plainly that
Ali Baba heard him. A door opened in the rocks, and
having made the troop go in, he followed them, and the
door shut again of itself. They stayed some time inside,
and Ali Baba, fearing they might come out and catch
him, was forced to sit patiently in the tree. At last the
door opened again, and the Forty Thieves came out. As
the Captain went in last he came out first, and made them
all pass by him; he then closed the door, saying: "Shut,
Sesame!" Every man bridled his horse and mounted, the
Captain put himself at their head, and they returned as
they came.

[1] Sesame is a kind of grain.

Then Ali Baba climbed down and went to the door
concealed among the bushes, and said: "Open, Sesame!" and
it flew open. Ali Baba, who expected a dull, dismal place,
was greatly surprised to find it large and well lighted,
hollowed by the hand of man in the form of a vault, which
received the light from an opening in the ceiling. He saw
rich bales of merchandise--silk, stuff-brocades, all piled
together, and gold and silver in heaps, and money in
leather purses. He went in and the door shut behind him.
He did not look at the silver, but brought out as many
bags of gold as he thought his asses, which were browsing
outside, could carry, loaded them with the bags, and hid
it all with fagots. Using the words: "Shut, Sesame!" he
closed the door and went home.

Then he drove his asses into the yard, shut the gates,
carried the money-bags to his wife, and emptied them out
before her. He bade her keep the secret, and he would go
and bury the gold. "Let me first measure it," said his wife.
"I will go borrow a measure of someone, while you dig the
hole." So she ran to the wife of Cassim and borrowed a
measure. Knowing Ali Baba's poverty, the sister was
curious to find out what sort of grain his wife wished to
measure, and artfully put some suet at the bottom of the
measure. Ali Baba's wife went home and set the measure
on the heap of gold, and filled it and emptied it often, to
her great content. She then carried it back to her sister,
without noticing that a piece of gold was sticking to it,
which Cassim's wife perceived directly her back was
turned. She grew very curious, and said to Cassim when
he came home: "Cassim, your brother is richer than you.
He does not count his money, he measures it." He begged
her to explain this riddle, which she did by showing him
the piece of money and telling him where she found it.
Then Cassim grew so envious that he could not sleep, and
went to his brother in the morning before sunrise. "Ali
Baba," he said, showing him the gold piece, "you pretend
to be poor and yet you measure gold." By this Ali Baba
perceived that through his wife's folly Cassim and his
wife knew their secret, so he confessed all and offered
Cassim a share. "That I expect," said Cassim; "but I
must know where to find the treasure, otherwise I will
discover all, and you will lose all." Ali Baba, more out of
kindness than fear, told him of the cave, and the very
words to use. Cassim left Ali Baba, meaning to be
beforehand with him and get the treasure for himself. He
rose early next morning, and set out with ten mules loaded
with great chests. He soon found the place, and the door
in the rock. He said: "Open, Sesame!" and the door
opened and shut behind him. He could have feasted his
eyes all day on the treasures, but he now hastened to
gather together as much of it as possible; but when he was
ready to go he could not remember what to say for thinking
of his great riches. Instead of "Sesame," he said:
"Open, Barley!" and the door remained fast. He named
several different sorts of grain, all but the right one, and
the door still stuck fast. He was so frightened at the
danger he was in that he had as much forgotten the word
as if he had never heard it.

About noon the robbers returned to their cave, and
saw Cassim's mules roving about with great chests on
their backs. This gave them the alarm; they drew their
sabres, and went to the door, which opened on their
Captain's saying: "Open, Sesame!" Cassim, who had
heard the trampling of their horses' feet, resolved to sell
his life dearly, so when the door opened he leaped out and
threw the Captain down. In vain, however, for the
robbers with their sabres soon killed him. On entering the
cave they saw all the bags laid ready, and could not
imagine how anyone had got in without knowing their
secret. They cut Cassim's body into four quarters, and
nailed them up inside the cave, in order to frighten anyone
who should venture in, and went away in search of more

As night drew on Cassim's wife grew very uneasy, and
ran to her brother-in-law, and told him where her husband
had gone. Ali Baba did his best to comfort her, and
set out to the forest in search of Cassim. The first thing
he saw on entering the cave was his dead brother. Full
of horror, he put the body on one of his asses, and bags
of gold on the other two, and, covering all with some
fagots, returned home. He drove the two asses laden with
gold into his own yard, and led the other to Cassim's
house. The door was opened by the slave Morgiana,
whom he knew to be both brave and cunning. Unloading
the ass, he said to her: "This is the body of your master,
who has been murdered, but whom we must bury as
though he had died in his bed. I will speak with you
again, but now tell your mistress I am come." The wife
of Cassim, on learning the fate of her husband, broke out
into cries and tears, but Ali Baba offered to take her to
live with him and his wife if she would promise to keep
his counsel and leave everything to Morgiana; whereupon
she agreed, and dried her eyes.

Morgiana, meanwhile, sought an apothecary and asked
him for some lozenges. "My poor master," she said, "can
neither eat nor speak, and no one knows what his distemper
is." She carried home the lozenges and returned
next day weeping, and asked for an essence only given to
those just about to die. Thus, in the evening, no one was
surprised to hear the wretched shrieks and cries of
Cassim's wife and Morgiana, telling everyone that Cassim
was dead. The day after Morgiana went to an old cobbler
near the gates of the town who opened his stall early, put
a piece of gold in his hand, and bade him follow her with
his needle and thread. Having bound his eyes with a
handkerchief, she took him to the room where the body
lay, pulled off the bandage, and bade him sew the quarters
together, after which she covered his eyes again and led
him home. Then they buried Cassim, and Morgiana his
slave followed him to the grave, weeping and tearing her
hair, while Cassim's wife stayed at home uttering lamentable
cries. Next day she went to live with Ali Baba, who
gave Cassim's shop to his eldest son.

The Forty Thieves, on their return to the cave, were
much astonished to find Cassim's body gone and some of
their money-bags. "We are certainly discovered," said
the Captain, "and shall be undone if we cannot find out
who it is that knows our secret. Two men must have
known it; we have killed one, we must now find the other.
To this end one of you who is bold and artful must go
into the city dressed as a traveler, and discover whom we
have killed, and whether men talk of the strange manner
of his death. If the messenger fails he must lose his life,
lest we be betrayed." One of the thieves started up and
offered to do this, and after the rest had highly commended
him for his bravery he disguised himself, and happened
to enter the town at daybreak, just by Baba Mustapha's
stall. The thief bade him good-day, saying: "Honest man,
how can you possibly see to stitch at your age?" "Old as
I am," replied the cobbler, "I have very good eyes, and
will you believe me when I tell you that I sewed a dead
body together in a place where I had less light than I have
now." The robber was overjoyed at his good fortune, and,
giving him a piece of gold, desired to be shown the house
where he stitched up the dead body. At first Mustapha
refused, saying that he had been blindfolded; but when
the robber gave him another piece of gold he began to
think he might remember the turnings if blindfolded as
before. This means succeeded; the robber partly led him,
and was partly guided by him, right in front of Cassim's
house, the door of which the robber marked with a piece
of chalk. Then, well pleased, he bade farewell to Baba
Mustapha and returned to the forest. By and by
Morgiana, going out, saw the mark the robber had made,
quickly guessed that some mischief was brewing, and
fetching a piece of chalk marked two or three doors on
each side, without saying anything to her master or

The thief, meantime, told his comrades of his discovery.
The Captain thanked him, and bade him show him the
house he had marked. But when they came to it they
saw that five or six of the houses were chalked in the same
manner. The guide was so confounded that he knew not
what answer to make, and when they returned he was at
once beheaded for having failed. Another robber was
dispatched, and, having won over Baba Mustapha, marked
the house in red chalk; but Morgiana being again too
clever for them, the second messenger was put to death
also. The Captain now resolved to go himself, but, wiser
than the others, he did not mark the house, but looked at
it so closely that he could not fail to remember it. He
returned, and ordered his men to go into the neighboring
villages and buy nineteen mules, and thirty-eight leather
jars, all empty except one, which was full of oil. The
Captain put one of his men, fully armed, into each, rubbing
the outside of the jars with oil from the full vessel.
Then the nineteen mules were loaded with thirty-seven
robbers in jars, and the jar of oil, and reached the town
by dusk. The Captain stopped his mules in front of Ali
Baba's house, and said to Ali Baba, who was sitting outside
for coolness: "I have brought some oil from a distance
to sell at to-morrow's market, but it is now so late that
I know not where to pass the night, unless you will do
me the favor to take me in." Though Ali Baba had seen
the Captain of the robbers in the forest, he did not
recognize him in the disguise of an oil merchant. He bade him
welcome, opened his gates for the mules to enter, and
went to Morgiana to bid her prepare a bed and supper for
his guest. He brought the stranger into his hall, and after
they had supped went again to speak to Morgiana in the
kitchen, while the Captain went into the yard under pretense
of seeing after his mules, but really to tell his men
what to do. Beginning at the first jar and ending at the
last, he said to each man: "As soon as I throw some
stones from the window of the chamber where I lie, cut
the jars open with your knives and come out, and I will
be with you in a trice." He returned to the house, and
Morgiana led him to his chamber. She then told Abdallah,
her fellow-slave, to set on the pot to make some broth for
her master, who had gone to bed. Meanwhile her lamp
went out, and she had no more oil in the house. "Do not
be uneasy," said Abdallah; "go into the yard and take
some out of one of those jars." Morgiana thanked him
for his advice, took the oil pot, and went into the yard.
When she came to the first jar the robber inside said
softly: "Is it time?"

Any other slave but Morgiana, on finding a man in the
jar instead of the oil she wanted, would have screamed
and made a noise; but she, knowing the danger her master
was in, bethought herself of a plan, and answered quietly:
"Not yet, but presently." She went to all the jars, giving
the same answer, till she came to the jar of oil. She now
saw that her master, thinking to entertain an oil merchant,
had let thirty-eight robbers into his house. She filled her
oil pot, went back to the kitchen, and, having lit her
lamp, went again to the oil jar and filled a large kettle full
of oil. When it boiled she went and poured enough oil
into every jar to stifle and kill the robber inside. When
this brave deed was done she went back to the kitchen,
put out the fire and the lamp, and waited to see what
would happen.

In a quarter of an hour the Captain of the robbers
awoke, got up, and opened the window. As all seemed
quiet, he threw down some little pebbles which hit the
jars. He listened, and as none of his men seemed to stir
he grew uneasy, and went down into the yard. On going
to the first jar and saying, "Are you asleep?" he smelt the
hot boiled oil, and knew at once that his plot to murder
Ali Baba and his household had been discovered. He
found all the gang was dead, and, missing the oil out of
the last jar, became aware of the manner of their death.
He then forced the lock of a door leading into a garden,
and climbing over several walls made his escape. Morgiana
heard and saw all this, and, rejoicing at her success,
went to bed and fell asleep.

At daybreak Ali Baba arose, and, seeing the oil jars
still there, asked why the merchant had not gone with his
mules. Morgiana bade him look in the first jar and see if
there was any oil. Seeing a man, he started back in
terror. "Have no fear," said Morgiana; "the man cannot
harm you: he is dead." Ali Baba, when he had recovered
somewhat from his astonishment, asked what had become
of the merchant. "Merchant!" said she, "he is no more a
merchant than I am!" and she told him the whole story,
assuring him that it was a plot of the robbers of the forest,
of whom only three were left, and that the white and red
chalk marks had something to do with it. Ali Baba at
once gave Morgiana her freedom, saying that he owed
her his life. They then buried the bodies in Ali Baba's
garden, while the mules were sold in the market by his

The Captain returned to his lonely cave, which seemed
frightful to him without his lost companions, and firmly
resolved to avenge them by killing Ali Baba. He dressed
himself carefully, and went into the town, where he took
lodgings in an inn. In the course of a great many journeys
to the forest he carried away many rich stuffs and much
fine linen, and set up a shop opposite that of Ali Baba's
son. He called himself Cogia Hassan, and as he was both
civil and well dressed he soon made friends with Ali
Baba's son, and through him with Ali Baba, whom he
was continually asking to sup with him. Ali Baba, wishing
to return his kindness, invited him into his house and
received him smiling, thanking him for his kindness to his
son. When the merchant was about to take his leave Ali
Baba stopped him, saying: "Where are you going, sir, in
such haste? Will you not stay and sup with me?" The
merchant refused, saying that he had a reason; and, on
Ali Baba's asking him what that was, he replied: "It is,
sir, that I can eat no victuals that have any salt in them."
"If that is all," said Ali Baba, "let me tell you that there
shall be no salt in either the meat or the bread that we eat
to-night." He went to give this order to Morgiana, who
was much surprised. "Who is this man," she said, "who
eats no salt with his meat?" "He is an honest man,
Morgiana," returned her master; "therefore do as I bid you."
But she could not withstand a desire to see this strange
man, so she helped Abdallah to carry up the dishes, and
saw in a moment that Cogia Hassan was the robber
Captain, and carried a dagger under his garment. "I am
not surprised," she said to herself, "that this wicked
man, who intends to kill my master, will eat no salt with
him; but I will hinder his plans."

She sent up the supper by Abdallah, while she made
ready for one of the boldest acts that could be thought on.
When the dessert had been served, Cogia Hassan was left
alone with Ali Baba and his son, whom he thought to
make drunk and then to murder them. Morgiana, meanwhile,
put on a head-dress like a dancing-girl's, and clasped
a girdle round her waist, from which hung a dagger with a
silver hilt, and said to Abdallah: "Take your tabor, and
let us go and divert our master and his guest." Abdallah
took his tabor and played before Morgiana until they
came to the door, where Abdallah stopped playing and
Morgiana made a low courtesy. "Come in, Morgiana,"
said Ali Baba, "and let Cogia Hassan see what you can
do"; and, turning to Cogia Hassan, he said: "She's my
slave and my housekeeper." Cogia Hassan was by no
means pleased, for he feared that his chance of killing Ali
Baba was gone for the present; but he pretended great
eagerness to see Morgiana, and Abdallah began to play
and Morgiana to dance. After she had performed several
dances she drew her dagger and made passes with it,
sometimes pointing it at her own breast, sometimes at her
master's, as if it were part of the dance. Suddenly, out
of breath, she snatched the tabor from Abdallah with her
left hand, and, holding the dagger in her right hand, held
out the tabor to her master. Ali Baba and his son put a
piece of gold into it, and Cogia Hassan, seeing that she
was coming to him, pulled out his purse to make her a
present, but while he was putting his hand into it
Morgiana plunged the dagger into his heart.

"Unhappy girl!" cried Ali Baba and his son, "what have
you done to ruin us?"

"It was to preserve you, master, not to ruin you,"
answered Morgiana. "See here," opening the false
merchant's garment and showing the dagger; "see what an
enemy you have entertained! Remember, he would eat
no salt with you, and what more would you have? Look
at him! he is both the false oil merchant and the Captain
of the Forty Thieves."

Ali Baba was so grateful to Morgiana for thus saving
his life that he offered her to his son in marriage, who
readily consented, and a few days after the wedding was
celebrated with greatest splendor.

At the end of a year Ali Baba, hearing nothing of the
two remaining robbers, judged they were dead, and set
out to the cave. The door opened on his saying: "Open
Sesame!" He went in, and saw that nobody had been
there since the Captain left it. He brought away as much
gold as he could carry, and returned to town. He told
his son the secret of the cave, which his son handed down
in his turn, so the children and grandchildren of Ali Baba
were rich to the end of their lives.[1]

[1] Arabian Nights.


Once upon a time there dwelt on the outskirts of a
large forest a poor woodcutter with his wife and two
children; the boy was called Hansel and the girl Grettel.
He had always little enough to live on, and once, when
there was a great famine in the land, he couldn't even
provide them with daily bread. One night, as he was tossing
about in bed, full of cares and worry, he sighed and said
to his wife: "What's to become of us? how are we to
support our poor children, now that we have nothing
more for ourselves?" "I'll tell you what, husband,"
answered the woman; "early to-morrow morning we'll
take the children out into the thickest part of the wood;
there we shall light a fire for them and give them each a
piece of bread; then we'll go on to our work and leave
them alone. They won't be able to find their way home,
and we shall thus be rid of them." "No, wife," said her
husband, "that I won't do; how could I find it in my
heart to leave my children alone in the wood? The wild
beasts would soon come and tear them to pieces." "Oh!
you fool," said she, "then we must all four die of hunger,
and you may just as well go and plane the boards for our
coffins"; and she left him no peace till he consented. "But
I can't help feeling sorry for the poor children," added the

The children, too, had not been able to sleep for hunger,
and had heard what their step-mother had said to their
father. Grettel wept bitterly and spoke to Hansel: "Now
it's all up with us." "No, no, Grettel," said Hansel,
"don't fret yourself; I'll be able to find a way to escape,
no fear." And when the old people had fallen asleep he
got up, slipped on his little coat, opened the back door and
stole out. The moon was shining clearly, and the white
pebbles which lay in front of the house glittered like bits
of silver. Hansel bent down and filled his pocket with as
many of them as he could cram in. Then he went back
and said to Grettel: "Be comforted, my dear little sister,
and go to sleep: God will not desert us"; and he lay down
in bed again.

At daybreak, even before the sun was up, the woman
came and woke the two children: "Get up, you lie-abeds,
we're all going to the forest to fetch wood." She gave
them each a bit of bread and said: "There's something for
your luncheon, but don't you eat it up before, for it's all
you'll get." Grettel took the bread under her apron, as
Hansel had the stones in his pocket. Then they all set
out together on the way to the forest. After they had
walked for a little, Hansel stood still and looked back at
the house, and this maneuver he repeated again and again.
His father observed him, and said: "Hansel, what are you
gazing at there, and why do you always remain behind?
Take care, and don't lose your footing." "Oh! father,"
said Hansel, "I am looking back at my white kitten,
which is sitting on the roof, waving me a farewell." The
woman exclaimed: "What a donkey you are! that isn't
your kitten, that's the morning sun shining on the chimney."
But Hansel had not looked back at his kitten, but
had always dropped one of the white pebbles out of his
pocket on to the path.

When they had reached the middle of the forest the
father said: "Now, children, go and fetch a lot of wood,
and I'll light a fire that you may not feel cold." Hansel
and Grettel heaped up brushwood till they had made a
pile nearly the size of a small hill. The brushwood was
set fire to, and when the flames leaped high the woman
said: "Now lie down at the fire, children, and rest
yourselves: we are going into the forest to cut down wood;
when we've finished we'll come back and fetch you."
Hansel and Grettel sat down beside the fire, and at midday
ate their little bits of bread. They heard the strokes
of the axe, so they thought their father was quite near.
But it was no axe they heard, but a bough he had tied on
a dead tree, and that was blown about by the wind. And
when they had sat for a long time their eyes closed with
fatigue, and they fell fast asleep. When they awoke at
last it was pitch dark. Grettel began to cry, and said:
"How are we ever to get out of the wood?" But Hansel
comforted her. "Wait a bit," he said, "till the moon is
up, and then we'll find our way sure enough." And when
the full moon had risen he took his sister by the hand and
followed the pebbles, which shone like new threepenny
bits, and showed them the path. They walked on through
the night, and at daybreak reached their father's house
again. They knocked at the door, and when the woman
opened it she exclaimed: "You naughty children, what
a time you've slept in the wood! we thought you were
never going to come back." But the father rejoiced, for
his conscience had reproached him for leaving his children
behind by themselves.

Not long afterward there was again great dearth in the
land, and the children heard their mother address their
father thus in bed one night: "Everything is eaten up
once more; we have only half a loaf in the house, and
when that's done it's all up with us. The children must
be got rid of; we'll lead them deeper into the wood this
time, so that they won't be able to find their way out
again. There is no other way of saving ourselves." The
man's heart smote him heavily, and he thought: "Surely
it would be better to share the last bite with one's
children!" But his wife wouldn't listen to his arguments, and
did nothing but scold and reproach him. If a man yields
once he's done for, and so, because he had given in the
first time, he was forced to do so the second.

But the children were awake, and had heard the
conversation. When the old people were asleep Hansel got
up, and wanted to go out and pick up pebbles again, as
he had done the first time; but the woman had barred the
door, and Hansel couldn't get out. But he consoled his
little sister, and said: "Don't cry, Grettel, and sleep
peacefully, for God is sure to help us."

At early dawn the woman came and made the children
get up. They received their bit of bread, but it was even
smaller than the time before. On the way to the wood
Hansel crumbled it in his pocket, and every few minutes
he stood still and dropped a crumb on the ground.
"Hansel, what are you stopping and looking about you for?"
said the father. "I'm looking back at my little pigeon,
which is sitting on the roof waving me a farewell,"
answered Hansel. "Fool!" said the wife; "that isn't your
pigeon, it's the morning sun glittering on the chimney."
But Hansel gradually threw all his crumbs on the path.
The woman led the children still deeper into the forest
farther than they had ever been in their lives before.
Then a big fire was lit again, and the mother said: "Just
sit down there, children, and if you're tired you can sleep
a bit; we're going into the forest to cut down wood, and
in the evening when we're finished we'll come back to
fetch you." At midday Grettel divided her bread with
Hansel, for he had strewn his all along their path. Then
they fell asleep, and evening passed away, but nobody
came to the poor children. They didn't awake till it was
pitch dark, and Hansel comforted his sister, saying:
"Only wait, Grettel, till the moon rises, then we shall see
the bread-crumbs I scattered along the path; they will
show us the way back to the house." When the moon
appeared they got up, but they found no crumbs, for the
thousands of birds that fly about the woods and fields had
picked them all up. "Never mind," said Hansel to Grettel;
"you'll see we'll find a way out"; but all the same they
did not. They wandered about the whole night, and the
next day, from morning till evening, but they could not
find a path out of the wood. They were very hungry, too,
for they had nothing to eat but a few berries they found
growing on the ground. And at last they were so tired
that their legs refused to carry them any longer, so they
lay down under a tree and fell fast asleep.

On the third morning after they had left their father's
house they set about their wandering again, but only got
deeper and deeper into the wood, and now they felt that
if help did not come to them soon they must perish. At
midday they saw a beautiful little snow-white bird sitting
on a branch, which sang so sweetly that they stopped still
and listened to it. And when its song was finished it
flapped its wings and flew on in front of them. They
followed it and came to a little house, on the roof of which
it perched; and when they came quite near they saw that
the cottage was made of bread and roofed with cakes,
while the window was made of transparent sugar. "Now
we'll set to," said Hansel, "and have a regular blow-out.[1]
I'll eat a bit of the roof, and you, Grettel, can eat some
of the window, which you'll find a sweet morsel." Hansel
stretched up his hand and broke off a little bit of the roof
to see what it was like, and Grettel went to the casement
and began to nibble at it. Thereupon a shrill voice called
out from the room inside:

  "Nibble, nibble, little mouse,
  Who's nibbling my house?"

The children answered:

  "Tis Heaven's own child,
  The tempest wild,"

and went on eating, without putting themselves about.
Hansel, who thoroughly appreciated the roof, tore down
a big bit of it, while Grettel pushed out a whole round
window-pane, and sat down the better to enjoy it. Suddenly
the door opened, and an ancient dame leaning on a
staff hobbled out. Hansel and Grettel were so terrified
that they let what they had in their hands fall. But the
old woman shook her head and said: "Oh, ho! you dear
children, who led you here? Just come in and stay with
me, no ill shall befall you." She took them both by the
hand and let them into the house, and laid a most
sumptuous dinner before them--milk and sugared pancakes,
with apples and nuts. After they had finished, two
beautiful little white beds were prepared for them, and when
Hansel and Grettel lay down in them they felt as if they
had got into heaven.

[1] He was a vulgar boy!

The old woman had appeared to be most friendly, but
she was really an old witch who had waylaid the children,
and had only built the little bread house in order to
lure them in. When anyone came into her power she
killed, cooked, and ate him, and held a regular feast-day
for the occasion. Now witches have red eyes, and cannot
see far, but, like beasts, they have a keen sense of smell,
and know when human beings pass by. When Hansel and
Grettel fell into her hands she laughed maliciously, and
said jeeringly: "I've got them now; they sha'n't escape
me." Early in the morning, before the children were
awake, she rose up, and when she saw them both sleeping
so peacefully, with their round rosy cheeks, she muttered
to herself: "That'll be a dainty bite." Then she seized
Hansel with her bony hand and carried him into a little
stable, and barred the door on him; he might scream as
much as he liked, it did him no good. Then she went to
Grettel, shook her till she awoke, and cried: "Get up, you
lazy-bones, fetch water and cook something for your
brother. When he's fat I'll eat him up." Grettel began
to cry bitterly, but it was of no use; she had to do what
the wicked witch bade her.

So the best food was cooked for poor Hansel, but Grettel
got nothing but crab-shells. Every morning the old woman
hobbled out to the stable and cried: "Hansel, put out
your finger, that I may feel if you are getting fat." But
Hansel always stretched out a bone, and the old dame,
whose eyes were dim, couldn't see it, and thinking always
it was Hansel's finger, wondered why he fattened so
slowly. When four weeks had passed and Hansel still
remained thin, she lost patience and determined to wait no
longer. "Hi, Grettel," she called to the girl, "be quick and
get some water. Hansel may be fat or thin, I'm going to
kill him to-morrow and cook him." Oh! how the poor
little sister sobbed as she carried the water, and how the
tears rolled down her cheeks! "Kind heaven help us now!"
she cried; "if only the wild beasts in the wood had eaten
us, then at least we should have died together." "Just
hold your peace," said the old hag; "it won't help you."

Early in the morning Grettel had to go out and hang
up the kettle full of water, and light the fire. "First we'll
bake," said the old dame; "I've heated the oven already
and kneaded the dough." She pushed Grettel out to the
oven, from which fiery flames were already issuing.
"Creep in," said the witch, "and see if it's properly heated,
so that we can shove in the bread." For when she had
got Grettel in she meant to close the oven and let the girl
bake, that she might eat her up too. But Grettel
perceived her intention, and said: "I don't know how I'm to
do it; how do I get in?" "You silly goose!" said the hag,
"the opening is big enough; see, I could get in myself,"
and she crawled toward it, and poked her head into the
oven. Then Grettel gave her a shove that sent her right
in, shut the iron door, and drew the bolt. Gracious! how
she yelled, it was quite horrible; but Grettel fled, and the
wretched old woman was left to perish miserably.

Grettel flew straight to Hansel, opened the little stable-door,
and cried: "Hansel, we are free; the old witch is
dead." Then Hansel sprang like a bird out of a cage when
the door is opened. How they rejoiced, and fell on each
other's necks, and jumped for joy, and kissed one another!
And as they had no longer any cause for fear, they went
in the old hag's house, and here they found, in every
corner of the room, boxes with pearls and precious stones.
"These are even better than pebbles," said Hansel, and
crammed his pockets full of them; and Grettel said: "I
too will bring something home," and she filled her apron
full. "But now," said Hansel, "let's go and get well away
from the witch's wood." When they had wandered about
for some hours they came to a big lake. "We can't get
over," said Hansel; "I see no bridge of any sort or kind."
"Yes, and there's no ferry-boat either," answered Grettel;
"but look, there swims a white duck; if I ask her she'll
help us over," and she called out:

  "Here are two children, mournful very,
  Seeing neither bridge nor ferry;
  Take us upon your white back,
  And row us over, quack, quack!"

The duck swam toward them, and Hansel got on her
back and bade his little sister sit beside him. "No,"
answered Grettel, "we should be too heavy a load for the
duck: she shall carry us across separately." The good
bird did this, and when they were landed safely on the
other side, and had gone for a while, the wood became
more and more familiar to them, and at length they saw
their father's house in the distance. Then they set off to
run, and bounding into the room fell on their father's neck.
The man had not passed a happy hour since he left them
in the wood, but the woman had died. Grettel shook out
her apron so that the pearls and precious stones rolled
about the room, and Hansel threw down one handful after
the other out of his pocket. Thus all their troubles were
ended, and they lived happily ever afterward.

My story is done. See! there runs a little mouse;
anyone who catches it may make himself a large fur cap out
of it.[1]

[1] Grimm.


A poor widow once lived in a little cottage with a
garden in front of it, in which grew two rose trees, one
bearing white roses and the other red. She had two
children, who were just like the two rose trees; one was
called Snow-white and the other Rose-red, and they were
the sweetest and best children in the world, always diligent
and always cheerful; but Snow-white was quieter and
more gentle than Rose-red. Rose-red loved to run about
the fields and meadows, and to pick flowers and catch
butterflies; but Snow-white sat at home with her mother
and helped her in the household, or read aloud to her when
there was no work to do. The two children loved each
other so dearly that they always walked about hand in
hand whenever they went out together, and when Snow-white
said, "We will never desert each other," Rose-red
answered: "No, not as long as we live"; and the mother
added: "Whatever one gets she shall share with the
other." They often roamed about in the woods gathering
berries and no beast offered to hurt them; on the
contrary, they came up to them in the most confiding
manner; the little hare would eat a cabbage leaf from their
hands, the deer grazed beside them, the stag would bound
past them merrily, and the birds remained on the branches
and sang to them with all their might.

No evil ever befell them; if they tarried late in the
wood and night overtook them, they lay down together
on the moss and slept till morning, and their mother knew
they were quite safe, and never felt anxious about them.
Once, when they had slept all night in the wood and had
been wakened by the morning sun, they perceived a
beautiful child in a shining white robe sitting close to
their resting-place. The figure got up, looked at them
kindly, but said nothing, and vanished into the wood.
And when they looked round about them they became
aware that they had slept quite close to a precipice, over
which they would certainly have fallen had they gone on
a few steps further in the darkness. And when they told
their mother of their adventure, she said what they had
seen must have been the angel that guards good children.

Snow-white and Rose-red kept their mother's cottage
so beautifully clean and neat that it was a pleasure to go
into it. In summer Rose-red looked after the house, and
every morning before her mother awoke she placed a
bunch of flowers before the bed, from each tree a rose.
In winter Snow-white lit the fire and put on the kettle,
which was made of brass, but so beautifully polished that
it shone like gold. In the evening when the snowflakes
fell their mother said: "Snow-white, go and close the
shutters," and they drew round the fire, while the mother
put on her spectacles and read aloud from a big book and
the two girls listened and sat and span. Beside them on
the ground lay a little lamb, and behind them perched a
little white dove with its head tucked under its wings.

One evening as they sat thus cosily together someone
knocked at the door as though he desired admittance.
The mother said: "Rose-red, open the door quickly; it
must be some traveler seeking shelter." Rose-red
hastened to unbar the door, and thought she saw a poor man
standing in the darkness outside; but it was no such thing,
only a bear, who poked his thick black head through the
door. Rose-red screamed aloud and sprang back in
terror, the lamb began to bleat, the dove flapped its
wings, and Snow-white ran and hid behind her mother's
bed. But the bear began to speak, and said: "Don't be
afraid: I won't hurt you. I am half frozen, and only wish
to warm myself a little." "My poor bear," said the
mother, "lie down by the fire, only take care you don't
burn your fur." Then she called out: "Snow-white and
Rose-red, come out; the bear will do you no harm; he is
a good, honest creature." So they both came out of their
hiding-places, and gradually the lamb and dove drew near
too, and they all forgot their fear. The bear asked the
children to beat the snow a little out of his fur, and they
fetched a brush and scrubbed him till he was dry. Then
the beast stretched himself in front of the fire, and
growled quite happily and comfortably. The children soon
grew quite at their ease with him, and led their helpless
guest a fearful life. They tugged his fur with their hands,
put their small feet on his back, and rolled him about here
and there, or took a hazel wand and beat him with it; and
if he growled they only laughed. The bear submitted to
everything with the best possible good-nature, only when
they went too far he cried: "Oh! children, spare my life!

  "Snow-white and Rose-red,
  Don't beat your lover dead."

When it was time to retire for the night, and the others
went to bed, the mother said to the bear: "You can lie
there on the hearth, in heaven's name; it will be shelter
for you from the cold and wet." As soon as day dawned
the children led him out, and he trotted over the snow
into the wood. From this time on the bear came every
evening at the same hour, and lay down by the hearth and
let the children play what pranks they liked with him;
and they got so accustomed to him that the door was
never shut till their black friend had made his appearance.

When spring came, and all outside was green, the bear
said one morning to Snow-white: "Now I must go away,
and not return again the whole summer." "Where are you
going to, dear bear?" asked Snow-white. "I must go to
the wood and protect my treasure from the wicked dwarfs.
In winter, when the earth is frozen hard, they are obliged
to remain underground, for they can't work their way
through; but now, when the sun has thawed and warmed
the ground, they break through and come up above to spy
the land and steal what they can; what once falls into
their hands and into their caves is not easily brought back
to light." Snow-white was quite sad over their friend's
departure, and when she unbarred the door for him, the
bear, stepping out, caught a piece of his fur in the
door-knocker, and Snow-white thought she caught sight of
glittering gold beneath it, but she couldn't be certain of
it; and the bear ran hastily away, and soon disappeared
behind the trees.

A short time after this the mother sent the children into
the wood to collect fagots. They came in their wanderings
upon a big tree which lay felled on the ground, and
on the trunk among the long grass they noticed something
jumping up and down, but what it was they couldn't
distinguish. When they approached nearer they perceived
a dwarf with a wizened face and a beard a yard long. The
end of the beard was jammed into a cleft of the tree, and
the little man sprang about like a dog on a chain, and
didn't seem to know what he was to do. He glared at the
girls with his fiery red eyes, and screamed out: "What are
you standing there for? Can't you come and help me?"
"What were you doing, little man?" asked Rose-red.
"You stupid, inquisitive goose!" replied the dwarf; "I
wanted to split the tree, in order to get little chips of wood
for our kitchen fire; those thick logs that serve to make
fires for coarse, greedy people like yourselves quite burn
up all the little food we need. I had successfully driven
in the wedge, and all was going well, but the cursed wood
was so slippery that it suddenly sprang out, and the tree
closed up so rapidly that I had no time to take my
beautiful white beard out, so here I am stuck fast, and I
can't get away; and you silly, smooth-faced, milk-and-water
girls just stand and laugh! Ugh! what wretches you are!"

The children did all in their power, but they couldn't
get the beard out; it was wedged in far too firmly. "I
will run and fetch somebody," said Rose-red. "Crazy
blockheads!" snapped the dwarf; "what's the good of calling
anyone else? You're already two too many for me.
Does nothing better occur to you than that?" "Don't be
so impatient," said Snow-white, "I'll see you get help,"
and taking her scissors out of her pocket she cut off the
end of his beard. As soon as the dwarf felt himself free he
seized a bag full of gold which was hidden among the
roots of the tree, lifted it up, and muttered aloud: "Curse
these rude wretches, cutting off a piece of my splendid
beard!" With these words he swung the bag over his
back, and disappeared without as much as looking at the
children again.

Shortly after this Snow-white and Rose-red went out
to get a dish of fish. As they approached the stream they
saw something which looked like an enormous grasshopper
springing toward the water as if it were going to jump in.
They ran forward and recognized their old friend the
dwarf. "Where are you going to?" asked Rose-red; "you're
surely not going to jump into the water?" "I'm not such
a fool," screamed the dwarf. "Don't you see that cursed
fish is trying to drag me in?" The little man had been
sitting on the bank fishing, when unfortunately the wind
had entangled his beard in the line; and when immediately
afterward a big fish bit, the feeble little creature had no
strength to pull it out; the fish had the upper fin, and
dragged the dwarf toward him. He clung on with all his
might to every rush and blade of grass, but it didn't help
him much; he had to follow every movement of the fish,
and was in great danger of being drawn into the water.
The girls came up just at the right moment, held him
firm, and did all they could to disentangle his beard from
the line; but in vain, beard and line were in a hopeless
muddle. Nothing remained but to produce the scissors
and cut the beard, by which a small part of it was sacrificed.

When the dwarf perceived what they were about he
yelled to them: "Do you call that manners, you toad-stools!
to disfigure a fellow's face? It wasn't enough that
you shortened my beard before, but you must now needs
cut off the best bit of it. I can't appear like this before
my own people. I wish you'd been in Jericho first." Then
he fetched a sack of pearls that lay among the rushes, and
without saying another word he dragged it away and
disappeared behind a stone.

It happened that soon after this the mother sent the
two girls to the town to buy needles, thread, laces, and
ribbons. Their road led over a heath where huge boulders
of rock lay scattered here and there. While trudging
along they saw a big bird hovering in the air, circling
slowly above them, but always descending lower, till at
last it settled on a rock not far from them. Immediately
afterward they heard a sharp, piercing cry. They ran
forward, and saw with horror that the eagle had pounced
on their old friend the dwarf, and was about to carry him
off. The tender-hearted children seized hold of the little
man, and struggled so long with the bird that at last he
let go his prey. When the dwarf had recovered from the
first shock he screamed in his screeching voice: "Couldn't
you have treated me more carefully? You have torn my
thin little coat all to shreds, useless, awkward hussies that
you are!" Then he took a bag of precious stones and
vanished under the rocks into his cave. The girls were
accustomed to his ingratitude, and went on their way and
did their business in town. On their way home, as they
were again passing the heath, they surprised the dwarf
pouring out his precious stones on an open space, for he
had thought no one would pass by at so late an hour. The
evening sun shone on the glittering stones, and they
glanced and gleamed so beautifully that the children stood
still and gazed on them. "What are you standing there
gaping for?" screamed the dwarf, and his ashen-gray face
became scarlet with rage. He was about to go off with
these angry words when a sudden growl was heard, and
a black bear trotted out of the wood. The dwarf jumped
up in great fright, but he hadn't time to reach his place of
retreat, for the bear was already close to him. Then he
cried in terror: "Dear Mr. Bear, spare me! I'll give you
all my treasure. Look at those beautiful precious stones
lying there. Spare my life! what pleasure would you get
from a poor feeble little fellow like me? You won't feel
me between your teeth. There, lay hold of these two
wicked girls, they will be a tender morsel for you, as fat
as young quails; eat them up, for heaven's sake." But the
bear, paying no attention to his words, gave the evil little
creature one blow with his paw, and he never moved

The girls had run away, but the bear called after them:
"Snow-white and Rose-red, don't be afraid; wait, and
I'll come with you." Then they recognized his voice and
stood still, and when the bear was quite close to them his
skin suddenly fell off, and a beautiful man stood beside
them, all dressed in gold. "I am a king's son," he said,
"and have been doomed by that unholy little dwarf, who
had stolen my treasure, to roam about the woods as a
wild bear till his death should set me free. Now he has
got his well-merited punishment."

Snow-white married him, and Rose-red his brother, and
they divided the great treasure the dwarf had collected
in his cave between them. The old mother lived for many
years peacefully with her children; and she carried the
two rose trees with her, and they stood in front of her
window, and every year they bore the finest red and white

[1] Grimm.


Once upon a time an old queen, whose husband had
been dead for many years, had a beautiful daughter.
When she grew up she was betrothed to a prince who lived
a great way off. Now, when the time drew near for her
to be married and to depart into a foreign kingdom, her
old mother gave her much costly baggage, and many
ornaments, gold and silver, trinkets and knicknacks, and,
in fact, everything that belonged to a royal trousseau,
for she loved her daughter very dearly. She gave her a
waiting-maid also, who was to ride with her and hand her
over to the bridegroom, and she provided each of them
with a horse for the journey. Now the Princess's horse was
called Falada, and could speak.

When the hour for departure drew near the old mother
went to her bedroom, and taking a small knife she cut her
fingers till they bled; then she held a white rag under
them, and letting three drops of blood fall into it, she
gave it to her daughter, and said: "Dear child, take great
care of this rag: it may be of use to you on the journey."

So they took a sad farewell of each other, and the
Princess stuck the rag in front of her dress, mounted her
horse, and set forth on the journey to her bridegroom's
kingdom. After they had ridden for about an hour the
Princess began to feel very thirsty, and said to her
waiting-maid: "Pray get down and fetch me some water in
my golden cup out of yonder stream: I would like a
drink." "If you're thirsty," said the maid, "dismount
yourself, and lie down by the water and drink; I don't mean
to be your servant any longer." The Princess was so
thirsty that she got down, bent over the stream, and
drank, for she wasn't allowed to drink out of the golden
goblet. As she drank she murmured: "Oh! heaven, what
am I to do?" and the three drops of blood replied:

  "If your mother only knew,
  Her heart would surely break in two."

But the Princess was meek, and said nothing about her
maid's rude behavior, and quietly mounted her horse
again. They rode on their way for several miles, but the
day was hot, and the sun's rays smote fiercely on them,
so that the Princess was soon overcome by thirst again.
And as they passed a brook she called once more to her
waiting-maid: "Pray get down and give me a drink from
my golden cup," for she had long ago forgotten her maid's
rude words. But the waiting-maid replied, more haughtily
even than before: "If you want a drink, you can dismount
and get it; I don't mean to be your servant." Then the
Princess was compelled by her thirst to get down, and
bending over the flowing water she cried and said: "Oh!
heaven, what am I to do?" and the three drops of blood

  "If your mother only knew,
  Her heart would surely break in two."

And as she drank thus, and leaned right over the water,
the rag containing the three drops of blood fell from her
bosom and floated down the stream, and she in her anxiety
never even noticed her loss. But the waiting-maid
had observed it with delight, as she knew it gave her
power over the bride, for in losing the drops of blood the
Princess had become weak and powerless. When she
wished to get on her horse Falada again, the waiting-maid
called out: "I mean to ride Falada: you must mount
my beast"; and this too she had to submit to. Then the
waiting-maid commanded her harshly to take off her
royal robes, and to put on her common ones, and finally
she made her swear by heaven not to say a word about
the matter when they reached the palace; and if she
hadn't taken this oath she would have been killed on the
spot. But Falada observed everything, and laid it all to

The waiting-maid now mounted Falada, and the real
bride the worse horse, and so they continued their journey
till at length they arrived at the palace yard. There was
great rejoicing over the arrival, and the Prince sprang
forward to meet them, and taking the waiting-maid for
his bride, he lifted her down from her horse and led her
upstairs to the royal chamber. In the meantime the real
Princess was left standing below in the courtyard. The
old King, who was looking out of his window, beheld her
in this plight, and it struck him how sweet and gentle,
even beautiful, she looked. He went at once to the royal
chamber, and asked the bride who it was she had brought
with her and had left thus standing in the court below.
"Oh!" replied the bride, "I brought her with me to keep
me company on the journey; give the girl something to do,
that she may not be idle." But the old King had no work
for her, and couldn't think of anything; so he said, "I've
a small boy who looks after the geese, she'd better help
him." The youth's name was Curdken, and the real bride
was made to assist him in herding geese.

Soon after this the false bride said to the Prince:
"Dearest husband, I pray you grant me a favor." He
answered: "That I will." "Then let the slaughterer cut
off the head of the horse I rode here upon, because it
behaved very badly on the journey." But the truth was she
was afraid lest the horse should speak and tell how she
had treated the Princess. She carried her point, and the
faithful Falada was doomed to die. When the news came
to the ears of the real Princess she went to the slaughterer,
and secretly promised him a piece of gold if he would do
something for her. There was in the town a large dark
gate, through which she had to pass night and morning
with the geese; would he "kindly hang up Falada's head
there, that she might see it once again?" The slaughterer
said he would do as she desired, chopped off the head, and
nailed it firmly over the gateway.

Early next morning, as she and Curdken were driving
their flock through the gate, she said as she passed under:
  "Oh! Falada, 'tis you hang there";

and the head replied:

  " 'Tis you; pass under, Princess fair:
  If your mother only knew,
  Her heart would surely break in two."

Then she left the tower and drove the geese into a field.
And when they had reached the common where the geese
fed she sat down and unloosed her hair, which was of pure
gold. Curdken loved to see it glitter in the sun, and wanted
much to pull some hair out. Then she spoke:

  "Wind, wind, gently sway,
  Blow Curdken's hat away;
  Let him chase o'er field and wold
  Till my locks of ruddy gold,
  Now astray and hanging down,
  Be combed and plaited in a crown."

Then a gust of wind blew Curdken's hat away, and he
had to chase it over hill and dale. When he returned from
the pursuit she had finished her combing and curling, and
his chance of getting any hair was gone. Curdken was
very angry, and wouldn't speak to her. So they herded
the geese till evening and then went home.

The next morning, as they passed under the gate, the
girl said:

  "Oh! Falada, 'tis you hang there";

and the head replied:

  " 'Tis you; pass under, Princess fair:
  If your mother only knew,
  Her heart would surely break in two."

Then she went on her way till she came to the common,
where she sat down and began to comb out her hair; then
Curdken ran up to her and wanted to grasp some of the
hair from her head, but she called out hastily:

  "Wind, wind, gently sway,
  Blow Curdken's hat away;
  Let him chase o'er field and wold
  Till my locks of ruddy gold,
  Now astray and hanging down,
  Be combed and plaited in a crown."

Then a puff of wind came and blew Curdken's hat far
away, so that he had to run after it; and when he returned
she had long finished putting up her golden locks, and he
couldn't get any hair; so they watched the geese till it was

But that evening when they got home Curdken went to
the old King, and said: "I refuse to herd geese any longer
with that girl." "For what reason?" asked the old King.
"Because she does nothing but annoy me all day long,"
replied Curdken; and he proceeded to relate all her
iniquities, and said: "Every morning as we drive the flock
through the dark gate she says to a horse's head that
hangs on the wall:

"'Oh! Falada, 'tis you hang there';

and the head replies:

 "''Tis you; pass under, Princess fair:
 If your mother only knew,
 Her heart would surely break in two.'"

And Curdken went on to tell what passed on the common
where the geese fed, and how he had always to chase
his hat.

The old King bade him go and drive forth his flock as
usual next day; and when morning came he himself took
up his position behind the dark gate, and heard how the
goose-girl greeted Falada. Then he followed her through
the field, and hid himself behind a bush on the common.
He soon saw with his own eyes how the goose-boy and the
goose-girl looked after the geese, and how after a time the
maiden sat down and loosed her hair, that glittered like
gold, and repeated:

  "Wind, wind, gently sway,
  Blow Curdken's hat away;
  Let him chase o'er field and wold
  Till my locks of ruddy gold
  Now astray and hanging down,
  Be combed and plaited in a crown."

Then a gust of wind came and blew Curdken's hat away,
so that he had to fly over hill and dale after it, and the girl
in the meantime quietly combed and plaited her hair: all
this the old King observed, and returned to the palace
without anyone having noticed him. In the evening when
the goose-girl came home he called her aside, and asked
her why she behaved as she did. "I may not tell you why;
how dare I confide my woes to anyone? for I swore not to
by heaven, otherwise I should have lost my life." The
old King begged her to tell him all, and left her no peace,
but he could get nothing out of her. At last he said:
"Well, if you won't tell me, confide your trouble to the
iron stove there," and he went away. Then she crept to
the stove, and began to sob and cry and to pour out her
poor little heart, and said: "Here I sit, deserted by all the
world, I who am a king's daughter, and a false waiting-maid
has forced me to take off my own clothes, and has
taken my place with my bridegroom, while I have to fulfill
the lowly office of goose-girl.

  "If my mother only knew
  Her heart would surely break in two."

But the old King stood outside at the stove chimney,
and listened to her words. Then he entered the room
again, and bidding her leave the stove, he ordered royal
apparel to be put on her, in which she looked amazingly
lovely. Then he summoned his son, and revealed to him
that he had got the false bride, who was nothing but a
waiting-maid, while the real one, in the guise of the
ex-goose-girl, was standing at his side. The young King
rejoiced from his heart when he saw her beauty and learned
how good she was, and a great banquet was prepared, to
which everyone was bidden. The bridegroom sat at the
head of the table, the Princess on one side of him and the
waiting-maid on the other; but she was so dazzled that
she did not recognize the Princess in her glittering
garments. Now when they had eaten and drunk, and were
merry, the old King asked the waiting-maid to solve a
knotty point for him. "What," said he, "should be done
to a certain person who has deceived everyone?" and he
proceeded to relate the whole story, ending up with,
"Now what sentence should be passed?" Then the false
bride answered: "She deserves to be put stark naked into
a barrel lined with sharp nails, which should be dragged
by two white horses up and down the street till she is

"You are the person," said the King, "and you have
passed sentence on yourself; and even so it shall be done
to you." And when the sentence had been carried out the
young King was married to his real bride, and both
reigned over the kingdom in peace and happiness.[1]

[1] Grimm.


THERE was once upon a time a widow who had two
daughters. The eldest was so much like her in the face
and humor that whoever looked upon the daughter saw
the mother. They were both so disagreeable and so proud
that there was no living with them.

The youngest, who was the very picture of her father
for courtesy and sweetness of temper, was withal one of
the most beautiful girls ever seen. As people naturally
love their own likeness, this mother even doted on her
eldest daughter and at the same time had a horrible
aversion for the youngest--she made her eat in the kitchen
and work continually.

Among other things, this poor child was forced twice a
day to draw water above a mile and a-half off the house,
and bring home a pitcher full of it. One day, as she was
at this fountain, there came to her a poor woman, who
begged of her to let her drink.

"Oh! ay, with all my heart, Goody," said this pretty
little girl; and rinsing immediately the pitcher, she took
up some water from the clearest place of the fountain,
and gave it to her, holding up the pitcher all the while,
that she might drink the easier.

The good woman, having drunk, said to her:

"You are so very pretty, my dear, so good and so
mannerly, that I cannot help giving you a gift." For
this was a fairy, who had taken the form of a poor
country woman, to see how far the civility and good
manners of this pretty girl would go. "I will give you
for a gift," continued the Fairy, "that, at every word
you speak, there shall come out of your mouth either a
flower or a jewel."

When this pretty girl came home her mother scolded
her for staying so long at the fountain.

"I beg your pardon, mamma," said the poor girl, "for
not making more haste."

And in speaking these words there came out of her
mouth two roses, two pearls, and two diamonds.

"What is it I see there?" said the mother, quite
astonished. "I think I see pearls and diamonds come out of
the girl's mouth! How happens this, child?"

This was the first time she had ever called her child.

The poor creature told her frankly all the matter, not
without dropping out infinite numbers of diamonds.

"In good faith," cried the mother, "I must send my
child thither. Come hither, Fanny; look what comes
out of thy sister's mouth when she speaks. Wouldst not
thou be glad, my dear, to have the same gift given thee?
Thou hast nothing else to do but go and draw water
out of the fountain, and when a certain poor woman
asks you to let her drink, to give it to her very civilly."

"It would be a very fine sight indeed," said this ill-bred
minx, "to see me go draw water."

"You shall go, hussy!" said the mother; "and this

So away she went, but grumbling all the way, taking
with her the best silver tankard in the house.

She was no sooner at the fountain than she saw coming
out of the wood a lady most gloriously dressed, who
came up to her, and asked to drink. This was, you must
know, the very fairy who appeared to her sister, but now
had taken the air and dress of a princess, to see how far
this girl's rudeness would go.

"Am I come hither," said the proud, saucy one, "to
serve you with water, pray? I suppose the silver tankard
was brought purely for your ladyship, was it? However,
you may drink out of it, if you have a fancy."

"You are not over and above mannerly," answered
the Fairy, without putting herself in a passion. "Well,
then, since you have so little breeding, and are so
disobliging, I give you for a gift that at every word you
speak there shall come out of your mouth a snake or a

So soon as her mother saw her coming she cried out:

"Well, daughter?"

"Well, mother?" answered the pert hussy, throwing
out of her mouth two vipers and two toads.

"Oh! mercy," cried the mother; "what is it I see? Oh!
it is that wretch her sister who has occasioned all this;
but she shall pay for it"; and immediately she ran to
beat her. The poor child fled away from her, and went
to hide herself in the forest, not far from thence.

The King's son, then on his return from hunting, met
her, and seeing her so very pretty, asked her what she
did there alone and why she cried.

"Alas! sir, my mamma has turned me out of doors."

The King's son, who saw five or six pearls and as
many diamonds come out of her mouth, desired her to
tell him how that happened. She thereupon told him
the whole story; and so the King's son fell in love with
her, and, considering himself that such a gift was worth
more than any marriage portion, conducted her to the
palace of the King his father, and there married her.

As for the sister, she made herself so much hated that
her own mother turned her off; and the miserable wretch,
having wandered about a good while without finding
anybody to take her in, went to a corner of the wood,
and there died.[1]

[1] Charles Perrault.


ONCE upon a time there lived a king who was so just
and kind that his subjects called him "the Good King."
It happened one day, when he was out hunting, that a
little white rabbit, which his dogs were chasing, sprang
into his arms for shelter. The King stroked it gently,
and said to it:

"Well, bunny, as you have come to me for protection
I will see that nobody hurts you."

And he took it home to his palace and had it put in a
pretty little house, with all sorts of nice things to eat.

That night, when he was alone in his room, a beautiful
lady suddenly appeared before him; her long dress was
as white as snow, and she had a crown of white roses upon
her head. The good King was very much surprised to
see her, for he knew his door had been tightly shut, and
he could not think how she had got in. But she said
to him:

"I am the Fairy Truth. I was passing through the
wood when you were out hunting, and I wished to find
out if you were really good, as everybody said you were,
so I took the shape of a little rabbit and came to your
arms for shelter, for I know that those who are merciful
to animals will be still kinder to their fellow-men. If
you had refused to help me I should have been certain
that you were wicked. I thank you for the kindness you
have shown me, which has made me your friend for ever.
You have only to ask me for anything you want and I
promise that I will give it to you."

"Madam," said the good King, "since you are a fairy
you no doubt know all my wishes. I have but one son
whom I love very dearly, that is why he is called Prince
Darling. If you are really good enough to wish to do
me a favor, I beg that you will become his friend."

"With all my heart," answered the Fairy. "I can
make your son the handsomest prince in the world, or
the richest, or the most powerful; choose whichever you
like for him."

"I do not ask either of these things for my son," replied
the good King; "but if you will make him the best of
princes, I shall indeed be grateful to you. What good
would it do him to be rich, or handsome, or to possess all
the kingdoms of the world if he were wicked? You know
well he would still be unhappy. Only a good man can
be really contented."

"You are quite right," answered the Fairy; "but it is
not in my power to make Prince Darling a good man
unless he will help me; he must himself try hard to become
good, I can only promise to give him good advice,
to scold him for his faults, and to punish him if he will
not correct and punish himself."

The good King was quite satisfied with this promise;
and very soon afterward he died.

Prince Darling was very sorry, for he loved his father
with all his heart, and he would willingly have given all
his kingdoms and all his treasures of gold and silver if
they could have kept the good King with him.

Two days afterward, when the Prince had gone to
bed, the Fairy suddenly appeared to him and said:

"I promised your father that I would be your friend,
and to keep my word I have come to bring you a present."
At the same time she put a little gold ring upon his

"Take great care of this ring," she said: "it is more
precious than diamonds; every time you do a bad deed
it will prick your finger, but if, in spite of its pricking,
you go on in your own evil way, you will lose my friendship,
and I shall become your enemy."

So saying, the Fairy disappeared, leaving Prince
Darling very much astonished.

For some time he behaved so well that the ring never
pricked him, and that made him so contented that his
subjects called him Prince Darling the Happy.

One day, however, he went out hunting, but could get
no sport, which put him in a very bad temper; it seemed
to him as he rode along that his ring was pressing into
his finger, but as it did not prick him he did not heed it.
When he got home and went to his own room, his little
dog Bibi ran to meet him, jumping round him with
pleasure. "Get away!" said the Prince, quite gruffly.
"I don't want you, you are in the way."

The poor little dog, who didn't understand this at all,
pulled at his coat to make him at least look at her, and
this made Prince Darling so cross that he gave her quite
a hard kick.

Instantly his ring pricked him sharply, as if it had
been a pin. He was very much surprised, and sat down
in a corner of his room feeling quite ashamed of himself.

"I believe the Fairy is laughing at me," he thought.
"Surely I can have done no great wrong in just kicking
a tiresome animal! What is the good of my being ruler
of a great kingdom if I am not even allowed to beat my
own dog?"

"I am not making fun of you," said a voice, answering
Prince Darling's thoughts. "You have committed three
faults. First of all, you were out of temper because you
could not have what you wanted, and you thought all
men and animals were only made to do your pleasure;
then you were really angry, which is very naughty
indeed; and lastly, you were cruel to a poor little animal
who did not in the least deserve to be ill-treated.

"I know you are far above a little dog, but if it were
right and allowable that great people should ill-treat all
who are beneath them, I might at this moment beat you,
or kill you, for a fairy is greater than a man. The
advantage of possessing a great empire is not to be able to
do the evil that one desires, but to do all the good that
one possibly can."

The Prince saw how naughty he had been, and promised
to try and do better in future, but he did not keep
his word. The fact was he had been brought up by a
foolish nurse, who had spoiled him when he was little.
If he wanted anything he only had to cry and fret and
stamp his feet and she would give him whatever he
asked for, which had made him self-willed; also she had
told him from morning to night that he would one day
be a king, and that kings were very happy, because
everyone was bound to obey and respect them, and no
one could prevent them from doing just as they liked.

When the Prince grew old enough to understand, he
soon learned that there could be nothing worse than to
be proud, obstinate, and conceited, and he had really
tried to cure himself of these defects, but by that time
all his faults had become habits; and a bad habit is very
hard to get rid of. Not that he was naturally of a bad
disposition; he was truly sorry when he had been naughty,
and said:

"I am very unhappy to have to struggle against my
anger and pride every day; if I had been punished for
them when I was little they would not be such a trouble
to me now."

His ring pricked him very often, and sometimes he
left off what he was doing at once; but at other times he
would not attend to it. Strangely enough, it gave him
only a slight prick for a trifling fault, but when he was
really naughty it made his finger actually bleed. At
last he got tired of being constantly reminded, and wanted
to be able to do as he liked, so he threw his ring aside,
and thought himself the happiest of men to have got rid
of its teasing pricks. He gave himself up to doing every
foolish thing that occurred to him, until he became quite
wicked and nobody could like him any longer.

One day, when the Prince was walking about, he saw
a young girl who was so very pretty that he made up
his mind at once that he would marry her. Her name
was Celia, and she was as good as she was beautiful.

Prince Darling fancied that Celia would think herself
only too happy if he offered to make her a great queen,
but she said fearlessly:

"Sire, I am only a shepherdess, and a poor girl, but,
nevertheless, I will not marry you."

"Do you dislike me?" asked the Prince, who was very
much vexed at this answer.

"No, my Prince," replied Celia; "I cannot help
thinking you very handsome; but what good would riches be
to me, and all the grand dresses and splendid carriages
that you would give me, if the bad deeds which I should
see you do every day made me hate and despise you?"

The Prince was very angry at this speech, and
commanded his officers to make Celia a prisoner and carry
her off to his palace. All day long the remembrance of
what she had said annoyed him, but as he loved her he
could not make up his mind to have her punished.

One of the Prince's favorite companions was his foster-brother,
whom he trusted entirely; but he was not at all
a good man, and gave Prince Darling very bad advice,
and encouraged him in all his evil ways. When he saw
the Prince so downcast he asked what was the matter,
and when he explained that he could not bear Celia's
bad opinion of him, and was resolved to be a better man
in order to please her, this evil adviser said to him:

"You are very kind to trouble yourself about this little
girl; if I were you I would soon make her obey me.
Remember that you are a king, and that it would be laughable
to see you trying to please a shepherdess, who ought
to be only too glad to be one of your slaves. Keep her
in prison, and feed her on bread and water for a little
while, and then, if she still says she will not marry you,
have her head cut off, to teach other people that you
mean to be obeyed. Why, if you cannot make a girl
like that do as you wish, your subjects will soon forget
that they are only put into this world for our pleasure."

"But," said Prince Darling, "would it not be a shame
if I had an innocent girl put to death? For Celia has
done nothing to deserve punishment."

"If people will not do as you tell them they ought to
suffer for it," answered his foster-brother; "but even if
it were unjust, you had better be accused of that by your
subjects than that they should find out that they may
insult and thwart you as often as they please."

In saying this he was touching a weak point in his
brother's character; for the Prince's fear of losing any
of his power made him at once abandon his first idea of
trying to be good, and resolve to try and frighten the
shepherdess into consenting to marry him.

His foster-brother, who wanted him to keep this
resolution, invited three young courtiers, as wicked as himself
to sup with the Prince, and they persuaded him to drink
a great deal of wine, and continued to excite his anger
against Celia by telling him that she had laughed at his
love for her; until at last, in quite a furious rage, he
rushed off to find her, declaring that if she still refused
to marry him she should be sold as a slave the very next

But when he reached the room in which Celia had
been locked up, he was greatly surprised to find that she
was not in it, though he had the key in his own pocket
all the time. His anger was terrible, and he vowed
vengeance against whoever had helped her to escape. His
bad friends, when they heard him, resolved to turn his
wrath upon an old nobleman who had formerly been his
tutor; and who still dared sometimes to tell the Prince
of his faults, for he loved him as if he had been his own
son. At first Prince Darling had thanked him, but after
a time he grew impatient and thought it must be just
mere love of fault-finding that made his old tutor blame
him when everyone else was praising and flattering him.
So he ordered him to retire from his Court, though he still,
from time to time, spoke of him as a worthy man whom
he respected, even if he no longer loved him. His
unworthy friends feared that he might some day take it
into his head to recall his old tutor, so they thought they
now had a good opportunity of getting him banished for

They reported to the Prince that Suilman, for that
was the tutor's name, had boasted of having helped Celia
to escape, and they bribed three men to say that Suilman
himself had told them about it. The Prince, in
great anger, sent his foster-brother with a number of
soldiers to bring his tutor before him, in chains, like a
criminal. After giving this order he went to his own
room, but he had scarcely got into it when there was a
clap of thunder which made the ground shake, and the
Fairy Truth appeared suddenly before him.

"I promised your father," said she sternly, "to give
you good advice, and to punish you if you refused to
follow it. You have despised my counsel, and have gone
your own evil way until you are only outwardly a man;
really you are a monster--the horror of everyone who
knows you. It is time that I should fulfil my promise,
and begin your punishment. I condemn you to resemble
the animals whose ways you have imitated. You
have made yourself like the lion by your anger, and like
the wolf by your greediness. Like a snake, you have
ungratefully turned upon one who was a second father to
you; your churlishness has made you like a bull. Therefore,
in your new form, take the appearance of all these

The Fairy had scarcely finished speaking when Prince
Darling saw to his horror that her words were fulfilled.
He had a lion's head, a bull's horns, a wolf's feet, and a
snake's body. At the same instant he found himself in
a great forest, beside a clear lake, in which he could see
plainly the horrible creature he had become, and a voice
said to him:

"Look carefully at the state to which your wickedness
has brought you; believe me, your soul is a thousand
times more hideous than your body."

Prince Darling recognized the voice of the Fairy Truth
and turned in a fury to catch her and eat her up if he
possibly could; but he saw no one, and the same voice
went on:

"I laugh at your powerlessness and anger, and I intend
to punish your pride by letting you fall into the
hands of your own subjects."

The Prince began to think that the best thing he could
do would be to get as far away from the lake as he could,
then at least he would not be continually reminded of his
terrible ugliness. So he ran toward the wood, but before
he had gone many yards he fell into a deep pit which
had been made to trap bears, and the hunters, who were
hiding in a tree, leaped down, and secured him with
several chains, and led him into the chief city of his own

On the way, instead of recognizing that his own faults
had brought this punishment upon him, he accused the
Fairy of being the cause of all his misfortunes, and bit
and tore at his chains furiously.

As they approached the town he saw that some great
rejoicing was being held, and when the hunters asked
what had happened they were told that the Prince,
whose only pleasure it was to torment his people, had
been found in his room, killed by a thunder-bolt (for
that was what was supposed to have become of him).
Four of his courtiers, those who had encouraged him in
his wicked doings, had tried to seize the kingdom and
divide it between them, but the people, who knew it
was their bad counsels which had so changed the Prince,
had cut off their heads, and had offered the crown to
Suilman, whom the Prince had left in prison. This
noble lord had just been crowned, and the deliverance
of the kingdom was the cause of the rejoicing "For,"
they said, "he is a good and just man, and we shall once
more enjoy peace and prosperity."

Prince Darling roared with anger when he heard this;
but it was still worse for him when he reached the great
square before his own palace. He saw Suilman seated
upon a magnificent throne, and all the people crowded
round, wishing him a long life that he might undo all
the mischief done by his predecessor.

Presently Suilman made a sign with his hand that the
people should be silent, and said: "I have accepted the
crown you have offered me, but only that I may keep it
for Prince Darling, who is not dead as you suppose; the
Fairy has assured me that there is still hope that you
may some day see him again, good and virtuous as he
was when he first came to the throne. Alas!" he
continued, "he was led away by flatterers. I knew his
heart, and am certain that if it had not been for the bad
influence of those who surrounded him he would have
been a good king and a father to his people. We may
hate his faults, but let us pity him and hope for his
restoration. As for me, I would die gladly if that could bring
back our Prince to reign justly and worthily once more."

These words went to Prince Darling's heart; he realized
the true affection and faithfulness of his old tutor, and
for the first time reproached himself for all his evil
deeds; at the same instant he felt all his anger melting
away, and he began quickly to think over his past life,
and to admit that his punishment was not more than
he had deserved. He left off tearing at the iron bars of
the cage in which he was shut up, and became as gentle
as a lamb.

The hunters who had caught him took him to a great
menagerie, where he was chained up among all the other
wild beasts, and he determined to show his sorrow for
his past bad behavior by being gentle and obedient to the
man who had to take care of him. Unfortunately, this
man was very rough and unkind, and though the poor
monster was quite quiet, he often beat him without
rhyme or reason when he happened to be in a bad temper.
One day when this keeper was asleep a tiger broke its
chain, and flew at him to eat him up. Prince Darling,
who saw what was going on, at first felt quite pleased to
think that he should be delivered from his persecutor,
but soon thought better of it and wished that he were free.

"I would return good for evil," he said to himself, "and
save the unhappy man's life." He had hardly wished
this when his iron cage flew open, and he rushed to the
side of the keeper, who was awake and was defending
himself against the tiger. When he saw the monster had
got out he gave himself up for lost, but his fear was soon
changed into joy, for the kind monster threw itself upon
the tiger and very soon killed it, and then came and
crouched at the feet of the man it had saved.

Overcome with gratitude, the keeper stooped to caress
the strange creature which had done him such a great
service; but suddenly a voice said in his ear:

"A good action should never go unrewarded," and at
the same instant the monster disappeared, and he saw
at his feet only a pretty little dog!

Prince Darling, delighted by the change, frisked about
the keeper, showing his joy in every way he could, and
the man, taking him up in his arms, carried him to the
King, to whom he told the whole story.

The Queen said she would like to have this wonderful
little dog, and the Prince would have been very happy
in his new home if he could have forgotten that he was a
man and a king. The Queen petted and took care of
him, but she was so afraid that he would get too fat that
she consulted the court physician, who said that he was
to be fed only upon bread, and was not to have much
even of that. So poor Prince Darling was terribly
hungry all day long, but he was very patient about it.

One day, when they gave him his little loaf for breakfast,
he thought he would like to eat it out in the garden;
so he took it up in his mouth and trotted away toward a
brook that he knew of a long way from the palace. But
he was surprised to find that the brook was gone, and
where it had been stood a great house that seemed to be
built of gold and precious stones. Numbers of people
splendidly dressed were going into it, and sounds of
music and dancing and feasting could be heard from the

But what seemed very strange was that those people
who came out of the house were pale and thin, and their
clothes were torn, and hanging in rags about them.
Some fell down dead as they came out before they had
time to get away; others crawled farther with great
difficulty; while others again lay on the ground, fainting
with hunger, and begged a morsel of bread from those
who were going into the house, but they would not so
much as look at the poor creatures.

Prince Darling went up to a young girl who was trying
to eat a few blades of grass, she was so hungry. Touched
with compassion, he said to himself:

"I am very hungry, but I shall not die of starvation
before I get my dinner; if I give my breakfast to this
poor creature perhaps I may save her life."

So he laid his piece of bread in the girl's hand, and saw
her eat it up eagerly.

She soon seemed to be quite well again, and the Prince,
delighted to have been able to help her, was thinking of
going home to the palace, when he heard a great outcry,
and, turning round, saw Celia, who was being carried
against her will into the great house.

For the first time the Prince regretted that he was no
longer the monster, then he would have been able to
rescue Celia; now he could only bark feebly at the people
who were carrying her off, and try to follow them, but
they chased and kicked him away.

He determined not to quit the place till he knew what
had become of Celia, and blamed himself for what had
befallen her.

"Alas!" he said to himself, "I am furious with the
people who are carrying Celia off, but isn't that exactly
what I did myself, and if I had not been prevented did I
not intend to be still more cruel to her?"

Here he was interrupted by a noise above his head--someone
was opening a window, and he saw with delight
that it was Celia herself, who came forward and threw
out a plate of most delicious-looking food, then the
window was shut again, and Prince Darling, who had not
had anything to eat all day, thought he might as well
take the opportunity of getting something. He ran
forward to begin, but the young girl to whom he had
given his bread gave a cry of terror and took him up in
her arms, saying:

"Don't touch it, my poor little dog--that house is the
palace of pleasure, and everything that comes out of it
is poisoned!"

At the same moment a voice said:

"You see a good action always brings its reward," and
the Prince found himself changed into a beautiful white
dove. He remembered that white was the favorite
color of the Fairy Truth, and began to hope that he
might at last win back her favor. But just now his
first care was for Celia, and rising into the air he flew
round and round the house, until he saw an open window;
but he searched through every room in vain. No trace
of Celia was to be seen, and the Prince, in despair,
determined to search through the world till he found her.
He flew on and on for several days, till he came to a
great desert, where he saw a cavern, and, to his delight,
there sat Celia, sharing the simple breakfast of an old

Overjoyed to have found her, Prince Darling perched
upon her shoulder, trying to express by his caresses how
glad he was to see her again, and Celia, surprised and
delighted by the tameness of this pretty white dove,
stroked it softly, and said, though she never thought of
its understanding her:

"I accept the gift that you make me of yourself, and
I will love you always."

"Take care what you are saying, Celia," said the old
hermit; "are you prepared to keep that promise?"

"Indeed, I hope so, my sweet shepherdess," cried the
Prince, who was at that moment restored to his natural
shape. "You promised to love me always; tell me that
you really mean what you said, or I shall have to ask
the Fairy to give me back the form of the dove which
pleased you so much."

"You need not be afraid that she will change her
mind," said the Fairy, throwing off the hermit's robe in
which she had been disguised and appearing before them.

"Celia has loved you ever since she first saw you, only
she would not tell you while you were so obstinate and
naughty. Now you have repented and mean to be good
you deserve to be happy, and so she may love you as
much as she likes."

Celia and Prince Darling threw themselves at the
Fairy's feet, and the Prince was never tired of thanking
her for her kindness. Celia was delighted to hear how
sorry he was for all his past follies and misdeeds, and
promised to love him as long as she lived.

"Rise, my children," said the Fairy, "and I will
transport you to the palace, and Prince Darling shall have
back again the crown he forfeited by his bad behavior."

While she was speaking, they found themselves in
Suilman's hall, and his delight was great at seeing his
dear master once more. He gave up the throne joyfully
to the Prince, and remained always the most faithful
of his subjects.

Celia and Prince Darling reigned for many years, but
he was so determined to govern worthily and to do his
duty that his ring, which he took to wearing again, never
once pricked him severely.[1]

[1] Cabinet des Fees.


There was a man who had fine houses, both in town
and country, a deal of silver and gold plate, embroidered
furniture, and coaches gilded all over with gold. But
this man was so unlucky as to have a blue beard, which
made him so frightfully ugly that all the women and
girls ran away from him.

One of his neighbors, a lady of quality, had two
daughters who were perfect beauties. He desired of
her one of them in marriage, leaving to her choice which
of the two she would bestow on him. They would
neither of them have him, and sent him backward and
forward from one another, not being able to bear the
thoughts of marrying a man who had a blue beard, and
what besides gave them disgust and aversion was his
having already been married to several wives, and nobody
ever knew what became of them.

Blue Beard, to engage their affection, took them, with
the lady their mother and three or four ladies of their
acquaintance, with other young people of the neighborhood,
to one of his country seats, where they stayed a
whole week.

There was nothing then to be seen but parties of
pleasure, hunting, fishing, dancing, mirth, and feasting.
Nobody went to bed, but all passed the night in rallying
and joking with each other. In short, everything
succeeded so well that the youngest daughter began to
think the master of the house not to have a beard so very
blue, and that he was a mighty civil gentleman.

As soon as they returned home, the marriage was
concluded. About a month afterward, Blue Beard told his
wife that he was obliged to take a country journey for
six weeks at least, about affairs of very great
consequence, desiring her to divert herself in his absence, to
send for her friends and acquaintances, to carry them
into the country, if she pleased, and to make good cheer
wherever she was.

"Here," said he, "are the keys of the two great
wardrobes, wherein I have my best furniture; these are of my
silver and gold plate, which is not every day in use; these
open my strong boxes, which hold my money, both gold
and silver; these my caskets of jewels; and this is the
master-key to all my apartments. But for this little
one here, it is the key of the closet at the end of the great
gallery on the ground floor. Open them all; go into all
and every one of them, except that little closet, which I
forbid you, and forbid it in such a manner that, if you
happen to open it, there's nothing but what you may
expect from my just anger and resentment."

She promised to observe, very exactly, whatever he
had ordered; when he, after having embraced her, got
into his coach and proceeded on his journey.

Her neighbors and good friends did not stay to be
sent for by the new married lady, so great was their
impatience to see all the rich furniture of her house, not
daring to come while her husband was there, because of
his blue beard, which frightened them. They ran
through all the rooms, closets, and wardrobes, which
were all so fine and rich that they seemed to surpass one

After that they went up into the two great rooms,
where was the best and richest furniture; they could not
sufficiently admire the number and beauty of the tapestry,
beds, couches, cabinets, stands, tables, and looking-glasses,
in which you might see yourself from head to
foot; some of them were framed with glass, others with
silver, plain and gilded, the finest and most magnificent
ever were seen.

They ceased not to extol and envy the happiness of
their friend, who in the meantime in no way diverted
herself in looking upon all these rich things, because of
the impatience she had to go and open the closet on the
ground floor. She was so much pressed by her curiosity
that, without considering that it was very uncivil to
leave her company, she went down a little back staircase,
and with such excessive haste that she had twice
or thrice like to have broken her neck.

Coming to the closet-door, she made a stop for some
time, thinking upon her husband's orders, and considering
what unhappiness might attend her if she was
disobedient; but the temptation was so strong she could
not overcome it. She then took the little key, and
opened it, trembling, but could not at first see anything
plainly, because the windows were shut. After some
moments she began to perceive that the floor was all
covered over with clotted blood, on which lay the bodies
of several dead women, ranged against the walls. (These
were all the wives whom Blue Beard had married and
murdered, one after another.) She thought she should
have died for fear, and the key, which she pulled out of
the lock, fell out of her hand.

After having somewhat recovered her surprise, she
took up the key, locked the door, and went upstairs into
her chamber to recover herself; but she could not, she
was so much frightened. Having observed that the key
of the closet was stained with blood, she tried two or
three times to wipe it off, but the blood would not come
out; in vain did she wash it, and even rub it with soap
and sand; the blood still remained, for the key was
magical and she could never make it quite clean; when
the blood was gone off from one side, it came again on
the other.

Blue Beard returned from his journey the same evening,
and said he had received letters upon the road, informing
him that the affair he went about was ended to
his advantage. His wife did all she could to convince
him she was extremely glad of his speedy return.

Next morning he asked her for the keys, which she
gave him, but with such a trembling hand that he easily
guessed what had happened.

"What!" said he, "is not the key of my closet among the

"I must certainly have left it above upon the table,"
said she.

"Fail not to bring it to me presently," said Blue

After several goings backward and forward she was
forced to bring him the key. Blue Beard, having very
attentively considered it, said to his wife,

"How comes this blood upon the key?"

"I do not know," cried the poor woman, paler than

"You do not know!" replied Blue Beard. "I very well
know. You were resolved to go into the closet, were
you not? Mighty well, madam; you shall go in, and
take your place among the ladies you saw there."

Upon this she threw herself at her husband's feet, and
begged his pardon with all the signs of true repentance,
vowing that she would never more be disobedient. She
would have melted a rock, so beautiful and sorrowful
was she; but Blue Beard had a heart harder than any

"You must die, madam," said he, "and that presently."

"Since I must die," answered she (looking upon him
with her eyes all bathed in tears), "give me some little
time to say my prayers."

"I give you," replied Blue Beard, "half a quarter of
an hour, but not one moment more."

When she was alone she called out to her sister, and
said to her:

"Sister Anne" (for that was her name), "go up, I beg
you, upon the top of the tower, and look if my brothers
are not coming over; they promised me that they would
come to-day, and if you see them, give them a sign to
make haste."

Her sister Anne went up upon the top of the tower, and
the poor afflicted wife cried out from time to time:

"Anne, sister Anne, do you see anyone coming?"

And sister Anne said:

"I see nothing but the sun, which makes a dust, and
the grass, which looks green."

In the meanwhile Blue Beard, holding a great sabre
in his hand, cried out as loud as he could bawl to his

"Come down instantly, or I shall come up to you."

"One moment longer, if you please," said his wife, and
then she cried out very softly, "Anne, sister Anne, dost
thou see anybody coming?"

And sister Anne answered:

"I see nothing but the sun, which makes a dust, and
the grass, which is green."

"Come down quickly," cried Blue Beard, "or I will
come up to you."

"I am coming," answered his wife; and then she cried,
"Anne, sister Anne, dost thou not see anyone coming?"

"I see," replied sister Anne, "a great dust, which comes
on this side here."

"Are they my brothers?"

"Alas! no, my dear sister, I see a flock of sheep."

"Will you not come down?" cried Blue Beard

"One moment longer," said his wife, and then she
cried out: "Anne, sister Anne, dost thou see nobody coming?"

"I see," said she, "two horsemen, but they are yet a
great way off."

"God be praised," replied the poor wife joyfully; "they
are my brothers; I will make them a sign, as well as I
can, for them to make haste."

Then Blue Beard bawled out so loud that he made the
whole house tremble. The distressed wife came down,
and threw herself at his feet, all in tears, with her hair
about her shoulders.

"This signifies nothing," says Blue Beard; "you must
die"; then, taking hold of her hair with one hand, and
lifting up the sword with the other, he was going to take
off her head. The poor lady, turning about to him, and
looking at him with dying eyes, desired him to afford her
one little moment to recollect herself.

"No, no," said he, "recommend thyself to God," and
was just ready to strike . . .

At this very instant there was such a loud knocking
at the gate that Blue Beard made a sudden stop. The
gate was opened, and presently entered two horsemen,
who, drawing their swords, ran directly to Blue Beard.
He knew them to be his wife's brothers, one a dragoon,
the other a musketeer, so that he ran away immediately
to save himself; but the two brothers pursued so
close that they overtook him before he could get to the
steps of the porch, when they ran their swords through
his body and left him dead. The poor wife was almost
as dead as her husband, and had not strength enough
to rise and welcome her brothers.

Blue Beard had no heirs, and so his wife became
mistress of all his estate. She made use of one part of it to
marry her sister Anne to a young gentleman who had
loved her a long while; another part to buy captains
commissions for her brothers, and the rest to marry
herself to a very worthy gentleman, who made her forget
the ill time she had passed with Blue Beard.[1]

[1] Charles Perrault.


Once upon a time there was an old king who was so
ill that he thought to himself, "I am most likely on my
death-bed." Then he said, "Send Trusty John to me."
Now Trusty John was his favorite servant, and was so
called because all his life he had served him so faithfully.
When he approached the bed the King spake to him:
"Most trusty John, I feel my end is drawing near, and I
could face it without a care were it not for my son. He
is still too young to decide everything for himself, and
unless you promise me to instruct him in all he should
know, and to be to him as a father, I shall not close my
eyes in peace." Then Trusty John answered: "I will
never desert him, and will serve him faithfully, even
though it should cost me my life." Then the old King
said: "Now I die comforted and in peace"; and then he
went on: "After my death you must show him the whole
castle, all the rooms and apartments and vaults, and all
the treasures that lie in them; but you must not show
him the last room in the long passage, where the picture
of the Princess of the Golden Roof is hidden. When he
beholds that picture he will fall violently in love with it
and go off into a dead faint, and for her sake he will
encounter many dangers; you must guard him from this."
And when Trusty John had again given the King his
hand upon it the old man became silent, laid his head
on the pillow, and died.

When the old King had been carried to his grave
Trusty John told the young King what he had promised
his father on his death-bed, and added: "And I shall
assuredly keep my word, and shall be faithful to you as
I have been to him, even though it should cost me my

Now when the time of mourning was over, Trusty
John said to him: "It is time you should see your
inheritance. I will show you your ancestral castle." So
he took him over everything, and let him see all the riches
and splendid apartments, only the one room where the
picture was he did not open. But the picture was placed
so that if the door opened you gazed straight upon it,
and it was so beautifully painted that you imagined it
lived and moved, and that it was the most lovable and
beautiful thing in the whole world. But the young
King noticed that Trusty John always missed one door,
and said: "Why do you never open this one for me?"
"There is something inside that would appall you," he
answered. But the King replied: "I have seen the whole
castle, and shall find out what is in there"; and with
these words he approached the door and wanted to force
it open. But Trusty John held him back, and said:
"I promised your father before his death that you
shouldn't see what that room contains. It might bring
both you and me to great grief." "Ah! no," answered
the young King; "if I don't get in, it will be my certain
destruction; I should have no peace night or day till I
had seen what was in the room with my own eyes. Now
I don't budge from the spot till you have opened the

Then Trusty John saw there was no way out of it, so
with a heavy heart and many sighs he took the key from
the big bunch. When he had opened the door he stepped
in first, and thought to cover the likeness so that the
King might not perceive it; but it was hopeless: the King
stood on tiptoe and looked over his shoulder. And when
he saw the picture of the maid, so beautiful and glittering
with gold and precious stones, he fell swooning to the
ground. Trusty John lifted him up, carried him to bed,
and thought sorrowfully: "The curse has come upon us;
gracious heaven! what will be the end of it all?" Then
he poured wine down his throat till he came to himself
again. The first words he spoke were: "Oh! who is the
original of the beautiful picture?" "She is the Princess
of the Golden Roof," answered Trusty John. Then the
King continued: "My love for her is so great that if all
the leaves on the trees had tongues they could not express
it; my very life depends on my winning her. You are
my most trusty John: you must stand by me."

The faithful servant pondered long how they were to
set about the matter, for it was said to be difficult even
to get into the presence of the Princess. At length he
hit upon a plan, and spoke to the King: "All the things
she has about her--tables, chairs, dishes, goblets, bowls,
and all her household furniture--are made of gold. You
have in your treasure five tons of gold; let the goldsmiths
of your kingdom manufacture them into all manner
of vases and vessels, into all sorts of birds and game
and wonderful beasts; that will please her. We shall go
to her with them and try our luck." The King summoned
all his goldsmiths, and they had to work hard
day and night, till at length the most magnificent things
were completed. When a ship had been laden with them
the faithful John disguised himself as a merchant, and
the King had to do the same, so that they should be
quite unrecognizable. And so they crossed the seas and
journeyed till they reached the town where the Princess
of the Golden Roof dwelt.

Trusty John made the King remain behind on the
ship and await his return. "Perhaps," he said, "I may
bring the Princess back with me, so see that everything
is in order; let the gold ornaments be arranged and the
whole ship decorated." Then he took a few of the gold
things in his apron, went ashore, and proceeded straight
to the palace. When he came to the courtyard he found
a beautiful maiden standing at the well, drawing water
with two golden pails. And as she was about to carry
away the glittering water she turned round and saw the
stranger, and asked him who he was. Then he replied:
"I am a merchant," and opening his apron, he let her
peep in. "Oh! my," she cried; "what beautiful gold
wares!" she set down her pails, and examined one thing
after the other. Then she said: "The Princess must see
this, she has such a fancy for gold things that she will
buy up all you have." She took him by the hand and
let him into the palace, for she was the lady's maid.

When the Princess had seen the wares she was quite
enchanted, and said: "They are all so beautifully made
that I shall buy everything you have." But Trusty
John said: "I am only the servant of a rich merchant,
what I have here is nothing compared to what my master
has on his ship; his merchandise is more artistic and costly
than anything that has ever been made in gold before."
She desired to have everything brought up to her, but
he said: "There is such a quantity of things that it
would take many days to bring them up, and they would
take up so many rooms that you would have no space
for them in your house." Thus her desire and curiosity
were excited to such an extent that at last she said:
"Take me to your ship; I shall go there myself and view
your master's treasures."

Then Trusty John was quite delighted, and brought
her to the ship; and the King, when he beheld her, saw
that she was even more beautiful than her picture, and
thought every moment that his heart would burst. She
stepped on to the ship, and the King led her inside. But
Trusty John remained behind with the steersman, and
ordered the ship to push off. "Spread all sail, that we
may fly on the ocean like a bird in the air." Meanwhile
the King showed the Princess inside all his gold wares,
every single bit of it--dishes, goblets, bowls, the birds
and game, and all the wonderful beasts. Many hours
passed thus, and she was so happy that she did not
notice that the ship was sailing away. After she had
seen the last thing she thanked the merchant and
prepared to go home; but when she came to the ship's side
she saw that they were on the high seas, far from land,
and that the ship was speeding on its way under full
canvas. "Oh!" she cried in terror, "I am deceived,
carried away and betrayed into the power of a merchant;
I would rather have died!" But the King seized her
hand and spake: "I am no merchant, but a king of as
high birth as yourself; and it was my great love for you
that made me carry you off by stratagem. The first
time I saw your likeness I fell to the ground in a swoon."
When the Princess of the Golden Roof heard this she
was comforted, and her heart went out to him, so that
she willingly consented to become his wife.

Now it happened one day, while they were sailing on
the high seas, that Trusty John, sitting on the forepart
of the ship, fiddling away to himself, observed three
ravens in the air flying toward him. He ceased playing,
and listened to what they were saying, for he understood
their language. The one croaked: "Ah, ha! so he's
bringing the Princess of the Golden Roof home." "Yes,"
answered the second, "but he's not got her yet." "Yes,
he has," spake the third, "for she's sitting beside him
on the ship." Then number one began again and cried:
"That'll not help him! When they reach the land a
chestnut horse will dash forward to greet them: the King
will wish to mount it, and if he does it will gallop away
with him, and disappear into the air, and he will never
see his bride again." "Is there no escape for him?" asked
number two. "Oh! yes, if someone else mounts quickly
and shoots the horse dead with the pistol that is sticking
in the holster, then the young King is saved. But who's
to do that? And anyone who knows it and tells him will
be turned into stone from his feet to his knees." Then
spake number two: "I know more than that: even if the
horse is slain, the young King will still not keep his
bride: when they enter the palace together they will
find a ready-made wedding shirt in a cupboard, which
looks as though it were woven of gold and silver, but is
really made of nothing but sulphur and tar: when the
King puts it on it will burn him to his marrow and bones."
Number three asked: "Is there no way of escape, then?"
"Oh! yes," answered number two: "If someone seizes
the shirt with gloved hands and throws it into the fire,
and lets it burn, then the young King is saved. But
what's the good? Anyone knowing this and telling it will
have half his body turned into stone, from his knees
to his heart." Then number three spake: "I know yet
more: though the bridal shirt too be burnt, the King
hasn't even then secured his bride: when the dance is
held after the wedding, and the young Queen is dancing,
she will suddenly grow deadly white, and drop down like
one dead, and unless some one lifts her up and draws three
drops of blood from her right side, and spits them out
again, she will die. But if anyone who knows this
betrays it, he will be turned into stone from the crown of
his head to the soles of his feet." When the ravens had
thus conversed they fled onward, but Trusty John had
taken it all in, and was sad and depressed from that time
forward; for if he were silent to his master concerning
what he had heard, he would involve him in misfortune;
but if he took him into his confidence, then he himself
would forfeit his life. At last he said: "I will stand by
my master, though it should be my ruin."

Now when they drew near the land it came to pass
just as the ravens had predicted, and a splendid chestnut
horse bounded forward. "Capital!" said the King; "this
animal shall carry me to my palace," and was about to
mount, but Trusty John was too sharp for him, and,
springing up quickly, seized the pistol out of the holster
and shot the horse dead. Then the other servants of
the King, who at no time looked favorably on Trusty
John, cried out: "What a sin to kill the beautiful beast
that was to bear the King to his palace!" But the King
spake: "Silence! let him alone; he is ever my most trusty
John. Who knows for what good end he may have done
this thing?" So they went on their way and entered the
palace, and there in the hall stood a cupboard in which
lay the ready-made bridal shirt, looking for all the world
as though it were made of gold and silver. The young
King went toward it and was about to take hold of it,
but Trusty John, pushing him aside, seized it with his
gloved hands, threw it hastily into the fire, and let it
burn The other servants commenced grumbling again,
and said: "See, he's actually burning the King's bridal
shirt." But the young King spoke: "Who knows for
what good purpose he does it? Let him alone, he is my
most trusty John." Then the wedding was celebrated,
the dance began, and the bride joined in, but Trusty John
watched her countenance carefully. Of a sudden she
grew deadly white, and fell to the ground as if she were
dead. He at once sprang hastily toward her, lifted her
up, and bore her to a room, where he laid her down, and
kneeling beside her he drew three drops of blood from her
right side, and spat them out. She soon breathed again
and came to herself; but the young King had watched
the proceeding, and not knowing why Trusty John had
acted as he did, he flew into a passion, and cried: "Throw
him into prison." On the following morning sentence
was passed on Trusty John, and he was condemned to
be hanged. As he stood on the gallows he said: "Every
one doomed to death has the right to speak once before he
dies; and I too have that privilege?" "Yes," said the
King, "it shall be granted to you." So Trusty John
spoke: "I am unjustly condemned, for I have always
been faithful to you"; and he proceeded to relate how he
had heard the ravens' conversation on the sea, and how he
had to do all he did in order to save his master. Then
the King cried: "Oh! my most trusty John, pardon!
pardon! Take him down." But as he uttered the last
word Trusty John had fallen lifeless to the ground, and
was a stone.

The King and Queen were in despair, and the King
spake: "Ah! how ill have I rewarded such great fidelity!"
and made them lift up the stone image and place it in
his bedroom near his bed. As often as he looked at it
he wept and said: "Oh! if I could only restore you to
life, my most trusty John!" After a time the Queen
gave birth to twins, two small sons, who throve and grew,
and were a constant joy to her. One day when the
Queen was at church, and the two children sat and played
with their father, he gazed again full of grief on the stone
statue, and sighing, wailed: "Oh, if I could only restore
you to life, my most trusty John!" Suddenly the stone
began to speak, and said: "Yes, you can restore me to
life again if you are prepared to sacrifice what you hold
most dear." And the King cried out: "All I have in the
world will I give up for your sake." The stone
continued: "If you cut off with your own hand the heads of
your two children, and smear me with their blood, I shall
come back to life." The King was aghast when he
heard that he had himself to put his children to death;
but when he thought of Trusty John's fidelity, and how
he had even died for him, he drew his sword, and with
his own hand cut the heads off his children. And when
he had smeared the stone with their blood, life came back,
and Trusty John stood once more safe and sound before
him. He spake to the King: "Your loyalty shall be
rewarded," and taking up the heads of the children, he
placed them on their bodies, smeared the wounds with
their blood, and in a minute they were all right again
and jumping about as if nothing had happened. Then
the King was full of joy, and when he saw the Queen
coming, he hid Trusty John and the two children in a
big cupboard. As she entered he said to her: "Did you
pray in church?" "Yes," she answered, "but my
thoughts dwelt constantly on Trusty John, and of what
he has suffered for us." Then he spake: "Dear wife, we
can restore him to life, but the price asked is our two
little sons; we must sacrifice them." The Queen grew
white and her heart sank, but she replied: "We owe it
to him on account of his great fidelity." Then he
rejoiced that she was of the same mind as he had been, and
going forward he opened the cupboard, and fetched the
two children and Trusty John out, saying: "God be
praised! Trusty John is free once more, and we have our
two small sons again." Then he related to her all that
had passed, and they lived together happily ever

[1] Grimm.


One summer's day a little tailor sat on his table by the
window in the best of spirits, and sewed for dear life. As
he was sitting thus a peasant woman came down the
street, calling out: "Good jam to sell, good jam to sell."
This sounded sweetly in the tailor's ears; he put his frail
little head out of the window, and shouted: "up here,
my good woman, and you'll find a willing customer." The
woman climbed up the three flights of stairs with her
heavy basket to the tailor's room, and he made her spread
out all the pots in a row before him. He examined them
all, lifted them up and smelled them, and said at last:
"This jam seems good, weigh me four ounces of it, my
good woman; and even if it's a quarter of a pound I won't
stick at it." The woman, who had hoped to find a good
market, gave him what he wanted, but went away
grumbling wrathfully. "Now heaven shall bless this jam
for my use," cried the little tailor, "and it shall sustain and
strengthen me." He fetched some bread out of a cupboard,
cut a round off the loaf, and spread the jam on it.
"That won't taste amiss," he said; "but I'll finish that
waistcoat first before I take a bite." He placed the bread
beside him, went on sewing, and out of the lightness of his
heart kept on making his stitches bigger and bigger. In
the meantime the smell of the sweet jam rose to the ceiling,
where heaps of flies were sitting, and attracted them
to such an extent that they swarmed on to it in masses.
"Ha! who invited you?" said the tailor, and chased the
unwelcome guests away. But the flies, who didn't understand
English, refused to let themselves be warned off,
and returned again in even greater numbers. At last the
little tailor, losing all patience, reached out of his chimney
corner for a duster, and exclaiming: "Wait, and I'll give
it to you," he beat them mercilessly with it. When he left
off he counted the slain, and no fewer than seven lay dead
before him with outstretched legs. "What a desperate
fellow I am!" said he, and was filled with admiration at
his own courage. "The whole town must know about
this"; and in great haste the little tailor cut out a girdle,
hemmed it, and embroidered on it in big letters, "Seven
at a blow." "What did I say, the town? no, the whole
world shall hear of it," he said; and his heart beat for joy
as a lamb wags his tail.

The tailor strapped the girdle round his waist and set
out into the wide world, for he considered his workroom
too small a field for his prowess. Before he set forth he
looked round about him, to see if there was anything in
the house he could take with him on his journey; but he
found nothing except an old cheese, which he took possession
of. In front of the house he observed a bird that had
been caught in some bushes, and this he put into his
wallet beside the cheese. Then he went on his way merrily,
and being light and agile he never felt tired. His way
led up a hill, on the top of which sat a powerful giant, who
was calmly surveying the landscape. The little tailor
went up to him, and greeting him cheerfully said: "Good-day,
friend; there you sit at your ease viewing the whole
wide world. I'm just on my way there. What do you say
to accompanying me?" The giant looked contemptuously
at the tailor, and said: "What a poor wretched little
creature you are!" "That's a good joke," answered the
little tailor, and unbuttoning his coat he showed the giant
the girdle. "There now, you can read what sort of a fellow
I am." The giant read: "Seven at a blow"; and thinking
they were human beings the tailor had slain, he conceived
a certain respect for the little man. But first he thought
he'd test him, so taking up a stone in his hand, he squeezed
it till some drops of water ran out. "Now you do the
same," said the giant, "if you really wish to be thought
strong." "Is that all?" said the little tailor; "that's child's
play to me," so he dived into his wallet, brought out the
cheese, and pressed it till the whey ran out. "My squeeze
was in sooth better than yours," said he. The giant
didn't know what to say, for he couldn't have believed it
of the little fellow. To prove him again, the giant lifted
a stone and threw it so high that the eye could hardly
follow it. "Now, my little pigmy, let me see you do that."
"Well thrown," said the tailor; "but, after all, your stone
fell to the ground; I'll throw one that won't come down
at all." He dived into his wallet again, and grasping the
bird in his hand, he threw it up into the air. The bird,
enchanted to be free, soared up into the sky, and flew
away never to return. "Well, what do you think of that
little piece of business, friend?" asked the tailor. "You
can certainly throw," said the giant; "but now let's see if
you can carry a proper weight." With these words he led
the tailor to a huge oak tree which had been felled to the
ground, and said: "If you are strong enough, help me to
carry the tree out of the wood." "Most certainly," said
the little tailor: "just you take the trunk on your shoulder;
I'll bear the top and branches, which is certainly the
heaviest part." The giant laid the trunk on his shoulder,
but the tailor sat at his ease among the branches; and the
giant, who couldn't see what was going on behind him,
had to carry the whole tree, and the little tailor into the
bargain. There he sat behind in the best of spirits, lustily
whistling a tune, as if carrying the tree were mere sport.
The giant, after dragging the heavy weight for some time,
could get on no further, and shouted out: "Hi! I must let
the tree fall." The tailor sprang nimbly down, seized the
tree with both hands as if he had carried it the whole way
and said to the giant: "Fancy a big lout like you not being
able to carry a tree!"

They continued to go on their way together, and as
they passed by a cherry tree the giant grasped the top of
it, where the ripest fruit hung, gave the branches into the
tailor's hand, and bade him eat. But the little tailor was
far too weak to hold the tree down, and when the giant
let go the tree swung back into the air, bearing the little
tailor with it. When he had fallen to the ground again
without hurting himself, the giant said: "What! do you
mean to tell me you haven't the strength to hold down a
feeble twig?" "It wasn't strength that was wanting,"
replied the tailor; "do you think that would have been
anything for a man who has killed seven at a blow? I
jumped over the tree because the huntsmen are shooting
among the branches near us. Do you do the like if you
dare." The giant made an attempt, but couldn't get over
the tree, and stuck fast in the branches, so that here too
the little tailor had the better of him.

"Well, you're a fine fellow, after all," said the giant;
"come and spend the night with us in our cave." The
little tailor willingly consented to do this, and following
his friend they went on till they reached a cave where
several other giants were sitting round a fire, each holding
a roast sheep in his hand, of which he was eating. The
little tailor looked about him, and thought: "Yes, there's
certainly more room to turn round in here than in my
workshop." The giant showed him a bed and bade him
lie down and have a good sleep. But the bed was too big
for the little tailor, so he didn't get into it, but crept away
into the corner. At midnight, when the giant thought the
little tailor was fast asleep, he rose up, and taking his big
iron walking-stick, he broke the bed in two with a blow,
and thought he had made an end of the little grasshopper.
At early dawn the giants went off to the wood, and quite
forgot about the little tailor, till all of a sudden they met
him trudging along in the most cheerful manner. The
giants were terrified at the apparition, and, fearful lest he
should slay them, they all took to their heels as fast as
they could.

The little tailor continued to follow his nose, and after
he had wandered about for a long time he came to the
courtyard of a royal palace, and feeling tired he lay down
on the grass and fell asleep. While he lay there the people
came, and looking him all over read on his girdle: "Seven
at a blow." "Oh!" they said, "what can this great hero
of a hundred fights want in our peaceful land? He must
indeed be a mighty man of valor." They went and told
the King about him, and said what a weighty and useful
man he'd be in time of war, and that it would be well to
secure him at any price. This counsel pleased the King,
and he sent one of his courtiers down to the little tailor,
to offer him, when he awoke, a commission in their army.
The messenger remained standing by the sleeper, and
waited till he stretched his limbs and opened his eyes,
when he tendered his proposal. "That's the very thing
I came here for," he answered; "I am quite ready to enter
the King's service." So he was received with all honor,
and given a special house of his own to live in.

But the other officers resented the success of the little
tailor, and wished him a thousand miles away. "What's
to come of it all?" they asked each other; "if we quarrel
with him, he'll let out at us, and at every blow seven will
fall. There'll soon be an end of us." So they resolved to
go in a body to the King, and all to send in their papers.
"We are not made," they said, "to hold out against a man
who kills seven at a blow." The King was grieved at the
thought of losing all his faithful servants for the sake of
one man, and he wished heartily that he had never set
eyes on him, or that he could get rid of him. But he
didn't dare to send him away, for he feared he might kill
him along with his people, and place himself on the
throne. He pondered long and deeply over the matter,
and finally came to a conclusion. He sent to the tailor and
told him that, seeing what a great and warlike hero he was,
he was about to make him an offer. In a certain wood of
his kingdom there dwelled two giants who did much
harm; by the way they robbed, murdered, burned, and
plundered everything about them; "no one could approach
them without endangering his life. But if he could overcome
and kill these two giants he should have his only
daughter for a wife, and half his kingdom into the bargain;
he might have a hundred horsemen, too, to back him up."
"That's the very thing for a man like me," thought the
little tailor; "one doesn't get the offer of a beautiful
princess and half a kingdom every day." "Done with
you," he answered; "I'll soon put an end to the giants.
But I haven't the smallest need of your hundred horsemen;
a fellow who can slay seven men at a blow need not
be afraid of two."

The little tailor set out, and the hundred horsemen
followed him. When he came to the outskirts of the wood
he said to his followers: "You wait here, I'll manage the
giants by myself"; and he went on into the wood, casting
his sharp little eyes right and left about him. After a
while he spied the two giants lying asleep under a tree,
and snoring till the very boughs bent with the breeze.
The little tailor lost no time in filling his wallet with
stones, and then climbed up the tree under which they lay.
When he got to about the middle of it he slipped along a
branch till he sat just above the sleepers, when he threw
down one stone after the other on the nearest giant. The
giant felt nothing for a long time, but at last he woke up,
and pinching his companion said: "What did you strike
me for?" "I didn't strike you," said the other, "you must
be dreaming." They both lay down to sleep again, and
the tailor threw down a stone on the second giant, who
sprang up and cried: "What's that for? Why did you
throw something at me?" "I didn't throw anything,"
growled the first one. They wrangled on for a time, till,
as both were tired, they made up the matter and fell
asleep again. The little tailor began his game once more,
and flung the largest stone he could find in his wallet with
all his force, and hit the first giant on the chest. "This is
too much of a good thing!" he yelled, and springing up
like a madman, he knocked his companion against the
tree till he trembled. He gave, however, as good as he
got, and they became so enraged that they tore up trees
and beat each other with them, till they both fell dead at
once on the ground. Then the little tailor jumped down.
"It's a mercy," he said, "that they didn't root up the tree
on which I was perched, or I should have had to jump
like a squirrel on to another, which, nimble though I am,
would have been no easy job." He drew his sword and
gave each of the giants a very fine thrust or two on the
breast, and then went to the horsemen and said: "The
deed is done, I've put an end to the two of them; but I
assure you it has been no easy matter, for they even tore
up trees in their struggle to defend themselves; but all
that's of no use against one who slays seven men at a
blow." "Weren't you wounded?" asked the horsemen.

"No fear," answered the tailor; "they haven't touched
a hair of my head." But the horsemen wouldn't believe
him till they rode into the wood and found the giants
weltering in their blood, and the trees lying around, torn
up by the roots.

The little tailor now demanded the promised reward
from the King, but he repented his promise, and pondered
once more how he could rid himself of the hero. "Before
you obtain the hand of my daughter and half my kingdom,"
he said to him, "you must do another deed of valor.
A unicorn is running about loose in the wood, and doing
much mischief; you must first catch it." "I'm even less
afraid of one unicorn than of two giants; seven at a blow,
that's my motto." He took a piece of cord and an axe
with him, went out to the wood, and again told the men
who had been sent with him to remain outside. He hadn't
to search long, for the unicorn soon passed by, and, on
perceiving the tailor, dashed straight at him as though
it were going to spike him on the spot. "Gently, gently,"
said he, "not so fast, my friend"; and standing still he
waited till the beast was quite near, when he sprang
lightly behind a tree; the unicorn ran with all its force
against the tree, and rammed its horn so firmly into the
trunk that it had no strength left to pull it out again, and
was thus successfully captured. "Now I've caught my
bird," said the tailor, and he came out from behind the
tree, placed the cord round its neck first, then struck the
horn out of the tree with his axe, and when everything
was in order led the beast before the King.

Still the King didn't want to give him the promised
reward and made a third demand. The tailor was to
catch a wild boar for him that did a great deal of harm
in the wood; and he might have the huntsmen to help
him. "Willingly," said the tailor; "that's mere child's
play." But he didn't take the huntsmen into the wood
with him, and they were well enough pleased to remain
behind, for the wild boar had often received them in a
manner which did not make them desire its further
acquaintance. As soon as the boar perceived the tailor
it ran at him with foaming mouth and gleaming teeth,
and tried to knock him down; but our alert little friend
ran into a chapel that stood near, and got out of the
window again with a jump. The boar pursued him into the
church, but the tailor skipped round to the door, and
closed it securely. So the raging beast was caught, for it
was far too heavy and unwieldy to spring out of the
window. The little tailor summoned the huntsmen
together, that they might see the prisoner with their own
eyes. Then the hero betook himself to the King, who was
obliged now, whether he liked it or not, to keep his promise,
and hand him over his daughter and half his kingdom.
Had he known that no hero-warrior, but only a little tailor
stood before him, it would have gone even more to his
heart. So the wedding was celebrated with much splendor
and little joy, and the tailor became a king.

After a time the Queen heard her husband saying one
night in his sleep: "My lad, make that waistcoat and
patch these trousers, or I'll box your ears." Thus she
learned in what rank the young gentleman had been born,
and next day she poured forth her woes to her father, and
begged him to help her to get rid of a husband who was
nothing more nor less than a tailor. The King comforted
her, and said: "Leave your bedroom door open to-night,
my servants shall stand outside, and when your husband
is fast asleep they shall enter, bind him fast, and carry
him on to a ship, which shall sail away out into the wide
ocean." The Queen was well satisfied with the idea, but
the armor-bearer, who had overheard everything, being
much attached to his young master, went straight to him
and revealed the whole plot. "I'll soon put a stop to the
business," said the tailor. That night he and his wife
went to bed at the usual time; and when she thought he
had fallen asleep she got up, opened the door, and then
lay down again. The little tailor, who had only pretended
to be asleep, began to call out in a clear voice: "My lad,
make that waistcoat and patch those trousers, or I'll box
your ears. I have killed seven at a blow, slain two giants,
led a unicorn captive, and caught a wild boar, then why
should I be afraid of those men standing outside my door?"
The men, when they heard the tailor saying these words,
were so terrified that they fled as if pursued by a wild
army, and didn't dare go near him again. So the little
tailor was and remained a king all the days of his life.



My father had a small estate in Nottinghamshire, and
I was the third of four sons. He sent me to Cambridge
at fourteen years old, and after studying there three
years I was bound apprentice to Mr. Bates, a famous
surgeon in London. There, as my father now and then
sent me small sums of money, I spent them in learning
navigation, and other arts useful to those who travel, as
I always believed it would be some time or other my
fortune to do.

Three years after my leaving him my good master,
Mr. Bates, recommended me as ship's surgeon to the
"Swallow," on which I voyaged three years. When I
came back I settled in London, and, having taken part
of a small house, I married Miss Mary Burton, daughter
of Mr. Edmund Burton, hosier.

But my good master Bates died two years after; and
as I had few friends my business began to fail, and I
determined to go again to sea. After several voyages, I
accepted an offer from Captain W. Pritchard, master of
the "Antelope," who was making a voyage to the South
Sea. We set sail from Bristol, May 4, 1699; and our
voyage at first was very prosperous.

But in our passage to the East Indies we were driven
by a violent storm to the north-west of Van Diemen's
Land. Twelve of our crew died from hard labor and bad
food, and the rest were in a very weak condition. On the
5th of November, the weather being very hazy, the seamen
spied a rock within 120 yards of the ship; but the
wind was so strong that we were driven straight upon it,
and immediately split. Six of the crew, of whom I was
one, letting down the boat, got clear of the ship, and we
rowed about three leagues, till we could work no longer.
We therefore trusted ourselves to the mercy of the waves;
and in about half an hour the boat was upset by a sudden
squall. What became of my companions in the boat, or
those who escaped on the rock or were left in the vessel,
I cannot tell; but I conclude they were all lost. For my
part, I swam as fortune directed me, and was pushed forward
by wind and tide; but when I was able to struggle
no longer I found myself within my depth. By this time
the storm was much abated. I reached the shore at last,
about eight o'clock in the evening, and advanced nearly
half a mile inland, but could not discover any sign of
inhabitants. I was extremely tired, and with the heat of
the weather I found myself much inclined to sleep. I
lay down on the grass, which was very short and soft, and
slept sounder than ever I did in my life for about nine
hours. When I woke, it was just daylight. I attempted
to rise, but could not; for as I happened to be lying on my
back, I found my arms and legs were fastened on each
side to the ground; and my hair, which was long and
thick, tied down in the same manner. I could only look
upward. The sun began to grow hot, and the light hurt
my eyes. I heard a confused noise about me, but could
see nothing except the sky. In a little time I felt
something alive and moving on my left leg, which, advancing
gently over my breast, came almost up to my chin, when,
bending my eyes downward, I perceived it to be a human
creature, not six inches high, with a bow and arrow in his
hands, and a quiver at his back. In the meantime I felt
at least forty more following the first. I was in the
utmost astonishment, and roared so loud that they all ran
back in a fright; and some of them were hurt with the
falls they got by leaping from my sides upon the ground.
However, they soon returned, and one of them, who
ventured so far as to get a full sight of my face, lifted up
his hands in admiration. I lay all this while in great
uneasiness; but at length, struggling to get loose, I succeeded
in breaking the strings that fastened my left arm to the
ground; and at the same time, with a violent pull that
gave me extreme pain, I a little loosened the strings that
tied down my hair, so that I was just able to turn my
head about two inches. But the creatures ran off a second
time before I could seize them, whereupon there was a
great shout, and in an instant I felt above a hundred
arrows discharged on my left hand, which pricked me like
so many needles. Moreover, they shot another flight into
the air, of which some fell on my face, which I immediately
covered with my left hand. When this shower of arrows
was over I groaned with grief and pain, and then, striving
again to get loose, they discharged another flight of
arrows larger than the first, and some of them tried to
stab me with their spears; but by good luck I had on a
leather jacket, which they could not pierce. By this time
I thought it most prudent to lie still till night, when, my
left hand being already loose, I could easily free myself;
and as for the inhabitants, I thought I might be a match
for the greatest army they could bring against me if they
were all of the same size as him I saw. When the people
observed that I was quiet they discharged no more arrows,
but by the noise I heard I knew that their number was
increased; and about four yards from me, for more than
an hour, there was a knocking, like people at work. Then,
turning my head that way as well as the pegs and strings
would let me, I saw a stage set up, about a foot and a half
from the ground, with two or three ladders to mount it.
From this, one of them, who seemed to be a person of
quality, made me a long speech, of which I could not
understand a word, though I could tell from his manner
that he sometimes threatened me, and sometimes spoke
with pity and kindness. I answered in few words, but
in the most submissive manner; and, being almost famished
with hunger, I could not help showing my impatience
by putting my finger frequently to my mouth, to signify
that I wanted food. He understood me very well, and,
descending from the stage, commanded that several
ladders should be set against my sides, on which more
than a hundred of the inhabitants mounted, and walked
toward my mouth with baskets full of food, which had
been sent by the King's orders when he first received
tidings of me. There were legs and shoulders like mutton
but smaller than the wings of a lark. I ate them two or
three at a mouthful, and took three loaves at a time.
They supplied me as fast as they could, with a thousand
marks of wonder at my appetite. I then made a sign that
I wanted something to drink. They guessed that a small
quantity would not suffice me, and, being a most ingenious
people, they slung up one of their largest hogsheads,
then rolled it toward my hand, and beat out the top. I
drank it off at a draught, which I might well do, for it did
not hold half a pint. They brought me a second hogshead,
which I drank, and made signs for more; but they
had none to give me. However, I could not wonder
enough at the daring of these tiny mortals, who ventured
to mount and walk upon my body, while one of my hands
was free, without trembling at the very sight of so huge
a creature as I must have seemed to them. After some
time there appeared before me a person of high rank from
his Imperial Majesty. His Excellency, having mounted
my right leg, advanced to my face, with about a dozen
of his retinue, and spoke about ten minutes, often pointing
forward, which, as I afterward found, was toward the
capital city, about half a mile distant, whither it was
commanded by his Majesty that I should be conveyed.
I made a sign with my hand that was loose, putting it to
the other (but over his Excellency's head, for fear of
hurting him or his train), to show that I desired my
liberty. He seemed to understand me well enough, for he
shook his head, though he made other signs to let me
know that I should have meat and drink enough, and
very good treatment. Then I once more thought of
attempting to escape; but when I felt the smart of their
arrows on my face and hands, which were all in blisters
and observed likewise that the number of my enemies
increased, I gave tokens to let them know that they might
do with me what they pleased. Then they daubed my
face and hands with a sweet-smelling ointment, which in
a few minutes removed all the smarts of the arrows. The
relief from pain and hunger made me drowsy, and presently
I fell asleep. I slept about eight hours, as I was told
afterward; and it was no wonder, for the physicians, by
the Emperor's orders, had mingled a sleeping draught in
the hogsheads of wine.

It seems that, when I was discovered sleeping on the
ground after my landing, the Emperor had early notice
of it, and determined that I should be tied in the manner
I have related (which was done in the night, while I
slept), that plenty of meat and drink should be sent me,
and a machine prepared to carry me to the capital city.
Five hundred carpenters and engineers were immediately
set to work to prepare the engine. It was a frame of wood,
raised three inches from the ground, about seven feet long
and four wide, moving upon twenty-two wheels. But the
difficulty was to place me on it. Eighty poles were erected
for this purpose, and very strong cords fastened to
bandages which the workmen had tied round my neck, hands,
body, and legs. Nine hundred of the strongest men were
employed to draw up these cords by pulleys fastened on
the poles, and in less than three hours I was raised and
slung into the engine, and there tied fast. Fifteen hundred
of the Emperor's largest horses, each about four
inches and a half high, were then employed to draw me
toward the capital. But while all this was done I still lay
in a deep sleep, and I did not wake till four hours after we
began our journey.

The Emperor and all his Court came out to meet us
when we reached the capital; but his great officials would
not suffer his Majesty to risk his person by mounting on
my body. Where the carriage stopped there stood an
ancient temple, supposed to be the largest in the whole
kingdom, and here it was determined that I should lodge.
Near the great gate, through which I could easily creep,
they fixed ninety-one chains, like those which hang to a
lady's watch, which were locked to my left leg with
thirty-six padlocks; and when the workmen found it was
impossible for me to break loose, they cut all the strings
that bound me. Then I rose up, feeling as melancholy as
ever I did in my life. But the noise and astonishment of
the people on seeing me rise and walk were inexpressible.
The chains that held my left leg were about two yards
long, and gave me not only freedom to walk backward and
forward in a semicircle, but to creep in and lie at full
length inside the temple. The Emperor, advancing
toward me from among his courtiers, all most magnificently
clad, surveyed me with great admiration, but kept beyond
the length of my chain. He was taller by about the
breadth of my nail than any of his Court, which alone
was enough to strike awe into the beholders, and graceful
and majestic. The better to behold him, I lay down on
my side, so that my face was level with his, and he stood
three yards off. However, I have had him since many
times in my hand, and therefore cannot be deceived. His
dress was very simple; but he wore a light helmet of gold,
adorned with jewels and a plume. He held his sword
drawn in his hand, to defend himself if I should break
loose; it was almost three inches long, and the hilt was of
gold, enriched with diamonds. His voice was shrill, but
very clear. His Imperial Majesty spoke often to me, and
I answered; but neither of us could understand a word.


After about two hours the Court retired, and I was left
with a strong guard to keep away the crowd, some of
whom had had the impudence to shoot their arrows at me
as I sat by the door of my house. But the colonel ordered
six of them to be seized and delivered bound into my
hands. I put five of them into my coat pocket; and as to
the sixth, I made a face as if I would eat him alive. The
poor man screamed terribly, and the colonel and his
officers were much distressed, especially when they saw
me take out my penknife. But I soon set them at ease,
for, cutting the strings he was bound with, I put him
gently on the ground, and away he ran. I treated the rest
in the same manner, taking them one by one out of my
pocket; and I saw that both the soldiers and people were
delighted at this mark of my kindness.

Toward night I got with some difficulty into my house,
where I lay on the ground, as I had to do for a fortnight,
till a bed was prepared for me out of six hundred beds of
the ordinary measure.

Six hundred servants were appointed me, and three
hundred tailors made me a suit of clothes. Moreover, six
of his Majesty's greatest scholars were employed to teach
me their language, so that soon I was able to converse
after a fashion with the Emperor, who often honored me
with his visits. The first words I learned were to desire
that he would please to give me my liberty, which I every
day repeated on my knees; but he answered that this
must be a work of time, and that first I must swear a
peace with him and his kingdom. He told me also that
by the laws of the nation I must be searched by two of his
officers, and that as this could not be done without my
help, he trusted them in my hands, and whatever they
took from me should be returned when I left the country.
I took up the two officers, and put them into my coat
pockets. These gentlemen, having pen, ink, and paper
about them, made an exact list of everything they saw,
which I afterward translated into English, and which ran
as follows:

"In the right coat pocket of the great Man-Mountain
we found only one great piece of coarse cloth, large enough
to cover the carpet of your Majesty's chief room of state.
In the left pocket we saw a huge silver chest, with a silver
cover, which we could not lift. We desired that it should
be opened, and one of us stepping into it found himself
up to the mid-leg in a sort of dust, some of which flying
into our faces sent us both into a fit of sneezing. In his
right waistcoat pocket we found a number of white thin
substances, folded one over another, about the size of
three men, tied with a strong cable, and marked with
black figures, which we humbly conceive to be writings.
In the left there was a sort of engine, from the back of
which extended twenty long poles, with which, we
conjecture, the Man-Mountain combs his head. In the
smaller pocket on the right side were several round flat
pieces of white and red metal, of different sizes. Some of
the white, which appeared to be silver, were so large and
heavy that my comrade and I could hardly lift them.
From another pocket hung a huge silver chain, with a
wonderful kind of engine fastened to it, a globe half silver
and half of some transparent metal; for on the transparent
side we saw certain strange figures, and thought we could
touch them till we found our fingers stopped by the shining
substance. This engine made an incessant noise, like
a water-mill, and we conjecture it is either some unknown
animal, or the god he worships, but probably the latter,
for he told us that he seldom did anything without consulting it.

"This is a list of what we found about the body of the
Man-Mountain, who treated us with great civility."

I had one private pocket which escaped their search,
containing a pair of spectacles and a small spy-glass,
which, being of no consequence to the Emperor, I did not
think myself bound in honor to discover.


My gentleness and good behavior gained so far on the
Emperor and his Court, and, indeed, on the people in
general, that I began to have hopes of getting my liberty
in a short time. The natives came by degrees to be less
fearful of danger from me. I would sometimes lie down
and let five or six of them dance on my hand; and at last
the boys and girls ventured to come and play at hide-and-seek in my hair.

The horses of the army and of the royal stables were
no longer shy, having been daily led before me; and one
of the Emperor's huntsmen, on a large courser, took my
foot, shoe and all, which was indeed a prodigious leap.
I amused the Emperor one day in a very extraordinary
manner. I took nine sticks, and fixed them firmly in the
ground in a square. Then I took four other sticks, and
tied them parallel at each corner, about two feet from
the ground. I fastened my handkerchief to the nine sticks
that stood erect, and extended it on all sides till it was as
tight as the top of a drum; and I desired the Emperor
to let a troop of his best horse, twenty-four in number,
come and exercise upon this plain. His majesty approved
of the proposal, and I took them up one by one, with the
proper officers to exercise them. As soon as they got into
order they divided into two parties, discharged blunt
arrows, drew their swords, fled and pursued, and, in short,
showed the best military discipline I ever beheld. The
parallel sticks secured them and their horses from falling
off the stage, and the Emperor was so much delighted
that he ordered this entertainment to be repeated several
days, and persuaded the Empress herself to let me hold
her in her chair within two yards of the stage, whence she
could view the whole performance. Fortunately no
accident happened, only once a fiery horse, pawing with
his hoof, struck a hole in my handkerchief, and overthrew
his rider and himself. But I immediately relieved them
both, and covering the hole with one hand, I set down the
troop with the other as I had taken them up. The horse
that fell was strained in the shoulder; but the rider was
not hurt, and I repaired my handkerchief as well as I
could. However, I would not trust to the strength of it
any more in such dangerous enterprises.

I had sent so many petitions for my liberty that his
Majesty at length mentioned the matter in a full council,
where it was opposed by none except Skyresh Bolgolam,
admiral of the realm, who was pleased without any
provocation to be my mortal enemy. However, he agreed at
length, though he succeeded in himself drawing up the
conditions on which I should be set free. After they were
read I was requested to swear to perform them in the
method prescribed by their laws, which was to hold my
right foot in my left hand, and to place the middle finger
of my right hand on the crown of my head, and my
thumb on the top of my right ear. But I have made a
translation of the conditions, which I here offer to the

"Golbaste Mamarem Evlame Gurdile Shefin Mully Ully
Gue, Most Mighty Emperor of Lilliput, delight and terror
of the universe, whose dominions extend to the ends of
the globe, monarch of all monarchs, taller than the sons
of men, whose feet press down to the center, and whose
head strikes against the sun, at whose nod the princes of
the earth shake their knees, pleasant as the spring,
comfortable as the summer, fruitful as autumn, dreadful as
winter: His Most Sublime Majesty proposeth to the
Man-Mountain, lately arrived at our celestial dominions,
the following articles, which by a solemn oath he shall be
obliged to perform:

"First. The Man-Mountain shall not depart from our
dominions without our license under the great seal.

"Second. He shall not presume to come into our
metropolis without our express order, at which time the
inhabitants shall have two hours' warning to keep within

"Third. The said Man-Mountain shall confine his
walks to our principal high roads, and not offer to walk
or lie down in a meadow or field of corn.

"Fourth. As he walks the said roads he shall take the
utmost care not to trample upon the bodies of any of our
loving subjects, their horses or carriages, nor take any of
our subjects into his hands without their own consent.

"Fifth. If an express requires extraordinary speed the
Man-Mountain shall be obliged to carry in his pocket the
messenger and horse a six days' journey, and return the
said messenger (if so required) safe to our imperial

"Sixth. He shall be our ally against our enemies in the
island of Blefuscu, and do his utmost to destroy their
fleet, which is now preparing to invade us.

"Lastly. Upon his solemn oath to observe all the above
articles, the said Man-Mountain shall have a daily allowance
of meat and drink sufficient for the support of 1,724
of our subjects, with free access to our royal person, and
other marks of our favor. Given at our palace at Belfaburac,
the twelfth day of the ninety-first moon of our

I swore to these articles with great cheerfulness,
whereupon my chains were immediately unlocked, and I was
at full liberty.

One morning, about a fortnight after I had obtained
my freedom, Reldresal, the Emperor's secretary for
private affairs, came to my house, attended only by one
servant. He ordered his coach to wait at a distance, and
desired that I would give him an hour's audience. I
offered to lie down that he might the more conveniently
reach my ear; but he chose rather to let me hold him in
my hand during our conversation. He began with compliments
on my liberty, but he added that, save for the
present state of things at Court, perhaps I might not
have obtained it so soon. "For," he said, "however
flourishing we may seem to foreigners, we are in danger
of an invasion from the island of Blefuscu, which is the
other great empire of the universe, almost as large and as
powerful as this of his Majesty. For as to what we have
heard you say, that there are other kingdoms in the
world, inhabited by human creatures as large as yourself,
our philosophers are very doubtful, and rather conjecture
that you dropped from the moon, or one of the stars,
because a hundred mortals of your size would soon destroy
all the fruit and cattle of his Majesty's dominions.
Besides, our histories of six thousand moons make no mention
of any other regions than the two mighty empires of
Lilliput and Blefuscu, which, as I was going to tell you,
are engaged in a most obstinate war, which began in the
following manner: It is allowed on all hands that the
primitive way of breaking eggs was upon the larger end;
but his present Majesty's grandfather, while he was a boy,
going to eat an egg, and breaking it according to the
ancient practice, happened to cut one of his fingers.
Whereupon the Emperor, his father, made a law commanding
all his subjects to break the smaller end of their
eggs. The people so highly resented this law that there
have been six rebellions raised on that account, wherein
one emperor lost his life, and another his crown. It is
calculated that eleven hundred persons have at different
times suffered rather than break their eggs at the smaller
end. But these rebels, the Bigendians, have found so
much encouragement at the Emperor of Blefuscu's
Court, to which they always fled for refuge, that a bloody
war, as I said, has been carried on between the two empires
for six-and-thirty moons; and now the Blefuscudians have
equipped a large fleet, and are preparing to descend upon
us. Therefore his Imperial Majesty, placing great
confidence in your valor and strength, has commanded me
to set the case before you."

I desired the secretary to present my humble duty to
the Emperor, and to let him know that I was ready, at
the risk of my life, to defend him against all invaders.


It was not long before I communicated to his Majesty
the plan I formed for seizing the enemy's whole fleet.
The Empire of Blefuscu is an island parted from Lilliput
only by a channel eight hundred yards wide. I consulted
the most experienced seamen on the depth of the channel,
and they told me that in the middle, at high water, it was
seventy glumguffs (about six feet of European measure).
I walked toward the coast, where, lying down behind a
hillock, I took out my spy-glass, and viewed the enemy's
fleet at anchor--about fifty men-of-war, and other vessels.
I then came back to my house and gave orders for a great
quantity of the strongest cables and bars of iron. The
cable was about as thick as packthread, and the bars of
the length and size of a knitting-needle. I trebled the
cable to make it stronger, and for the same reason twisted
three of the iron bars together, bending the ends into a
hook. Having thus fixed fifty hooks to as many cables,
I went back to the coast, and taking off my coat, shoes,
and stockings, walked into the sea in my leather jacket
about half an hour before high water. I waded with what
haste I could, swimming in the middle about thirty yards,
till I felt ground, and thus arrived at the fleet in less than
half an hour. The enemy was so frightened when they
saw me that they leaped out of their ships and swam
ashore, where there could not be fewer than thirty
thousand. Then, fastening a hook to the hole at the prow of
each ship, I tied all the cords together at the end.
Meanwhile the enemy discharged several thousand arrows,
many of which stuck in my hands and face. My greatest
fear was for my eyes, which I should have lost if I had
not suddenly thought of the pair of spectacles which had
escaped the Emperor's searchers. These I took out and
fastened upon my nose, and thus armed went on with my
work in spite of the arrows, many of which struck against
the glasses of my spectacles, but without any other effect
than slightly disturbing them. Then, taking the knot in
my hand, I began to pull; but not a ship would stir, for
they were too fast held by their anchors. Thus the boldest
part of my enterprise remained. Letting go the cord,
I resolutely cut with my knife the cables that fastened
the anchors, receiving more than two hundred shots in
my face and hands. Then I took up again the knotted end
of the cables to which my hooks were tied, and with great
ease drew fifty of the enemy's largest men-of-war after me.

When the Blefuscudians saw the fleet moving in order,
and me pulling at the end, they set up a scream of grief
and despair that it is impossible to describe. When I had
got out of danger I stopped awhile to pick out the arrows
that stuck in my hands and face, and rubbed on some of
the same ointment that was given me at my arrival. I
then took off my spectacles, and after waiting about an
hour, till the tide was a little fallen, I waded on to the
royal port of Lilliput.

The Emperor and his whole Court stood on the shore
awaiting me. They saw the ships move forward in a large
half-moon, but could not discern me, who, in the middle
of the channel, was under water up to my neck. The
Emperor concluded that I was drowned, and that the
enemy's fleet was approaching in a hostile manner. But
he was soon set at ease, for, the channel growing shallower
every step I made, I came in a short time within hearing,
and holding up the end of the cable by which the fleet
was fastened, I cried in a loud voice: "Long live the most
puissant Emperor of Lilliput!" The Prince received me
at my landing with all possible joy, and made me a
Nardal on the spot, which is the highest title of honor
among them.

His Majesty desired that I would take some opportunity
to bring all the rest of his enemy's ships into his ports,
and seemed to think of nothing less than conquering the
whole Empire of Blefuscu, and becoming the sole monarch
of the world. But I plainly protested that I would never
be the means of bringing a free and brave people into
slavery; and though the wisest of the Ministers were of
my opinion, my open refusal was so opposed to his
Majesty's ambition that he could never forgive me. And
from this time a plot began between himself and those of
his Ministers who were my enemies, that nearly ended
in my utter destruction.

About three weeks after this exploit there arrived an
embassy from Blefuscu, with humble offers of peace,
which was soon concluded, on terms very advantageous
to our Emperor. There were six ambassadors, with a
train of about five hundred persons, all very magnificent.
Having been privately told that I had befriended them,
they made me a visit, and paying me many compliments
on my valor and generosity, invited me to their kingdom
in the Emperor their master's name. I asked them to
present my most humble respects to the Emperor their
master, whose royal person I resolved to attend before I
returned to my own country. Accordingly, the next time
I had the honor to see our Emperor I desired his general
permission to visit the Blefuscudian monarch. This he
granted me, but in a very cold manner, of which I afterward
learned the reason.

When I was just preparing to pay my respects to the
Emperor of Blefuscu, a distinguished person at Court, to
whom I had once done a great service, came to my house
very privately at night, and without sending his name
desired admission. I put his lordship into my coat pocket,
and, giving orders to a trusty servant to admit no one, I
fastened the door, placed my visitor on the table, and sat
down by it. His lordship's face was full of trouble; and
he asked me to hear him with patience, in a matter that
highly concerned my honor and my life.

"You are aware," he said, "that Skyresh Bolgolam has
been your mortal enemy ever since your arrival, and his
hatred is increased since your great success against
Blefuscu, by which his glory as admiral is obscured. This
lord and others have accused you of treason, and several
councils have been called in the most private manner on
your account. Out of gratitude for your favors I procured
information of the whole proceedings, venturing my
head for your service, and this was the charge against

"First, that you, having brought the imperial fleet of
Blefuscu into the royal port, were commanded by his
Majesty to seize all the other ships, and put to death all
the Bigendian exiles, and also all the people of the empire
who would not immediately consent to break their eggs
at the smaller end. And that, like a false traitor to his
Most Serene Majesty, you excused yourself from the service
on pretence of unwillingness to force the consciences
and destroy the liberties and lives of an innocent people.

"Again, when ambassadors arrived from the Court of
Blefuscu, like a false traitor, you aided and entertained
them, though you knew them to be servants of a prince
lately in open war against his Imperial Majesty.

"Moreover, you are now preparing, contrary to the
duty of a faithful subject, to voyage to the Court of

"In the debate on this charge," my friend continued,
"his Majesty often urged the services you had done him,
while the admiral and treasurer insisted that you should
be put to a shameful death. But Reldresal, secretary for
private affairs, who has always proved himself your friend
suggested that if his Majesty would please to spare your
life and only give orders to put out both your eyes, justice
might in some measure be satisfied. At this Bolgolam
rose up in fury, wondering how the secretary dared desire
to preserve the life of a traitor; and the treasurer, pointing
out the expense of keeping you, also urged your death.
But his Majesty was graciously pleased to say that since
the council thought the loss of your eyes too easy a
punishment, some other might afterward be inflicted. And
the secretary, humbly desiring to be heard again, said
that as to expense your allowance might be gradually
lessened, so that, for want of sufficient food you should
grow weak and faint, and die in a few months, when his
Majesty's subjects might cut your flesh from your bones
and bury it, leaving the skeleton for the admiration of

"Thus, through the great friendship of the secretary
the affair was arranged. It was commanded that the plan
of starving you by degrees should be kept a secret; but
the sentence of putting out your eyes was entered on the
books. In three days your friend the secretary will come
to your house and read the accusation before you, and
point out the great mercy of his Majesty, that only condemns
you to the loss of your eyes--which, he does not
doubt, you will submit to humbly and gratefully. Twenty
of his Majesty's surgeons will attend, to see the operation
well performed, by discharging very sharp-pointed arrows
into the balls of your eyes as you lie on the ground.

"I leave you," said my friend, "to consider what
measures you will take; and, to escape suspicion, I must
immediately return, as secretly as I came."

His lordship did so; and I remained alone, in great
perplexity. At first I was bent on resistance; for while I
had liberty I could easily with stones pelt the metropolis
to pieces; but I soon rejected that idea with horror,
remembering the oath I had made to the Emperor, and the
favors I had received from him. At last, having his
Majesty's leave to pay my respects to the Emperor of
Blefuscu, I resolved to take this opportunity. Before the
three days had passed I wrote a letter to my friend the
secretary telling him of my resolution; and, without
waiting for an answer, went to the coast, and entering the
channel, between wading and swimming reached the port
of Blefuscu, where the people, who had long expected me,
led me to the capital.

His Majesty, with the royal family and great officers of
the Court, came out to receive me, and they entertained
me in a manner suited to the generosity of so great a
prince. I did not, however, mention my disgrace with the
Emperor of Lilliput, since I did not suppose that prince
would disclose the secret while I was out of his power.
But in this, it soon appeared, I was deceived.


Three days after my arrival, walking out of curiosity
to the northeast coast of the island, I observed at some
distance in the sea something that looked like a boat
overturned. I pulled off my shoes and stockings, and
wading two or three hundred yards, I plainly saw it to be
a real boat, which I supposed might by some tempest
have been driven from a ship. I returned immediately to
the city for help, and after a huge amount of labor I
managed to get my boat to the royal port of Blefuscu,
where a great crowd of people appeared, full of wonder at
sight of so prodigious a vessel. I told the Emperor that
my good fortune had thrown this boat in my way to
carry me to some place whence I might return to my
native country, and begged his orders for materials to fit
it up, and leave to depart--which, after many kindly
speeches, he was pleased to grant.

Meanwhile the Emperor of Lilliput, uneasy at my long
absence (but never imagining that I had the least notice
of his designs), sent a person of rank to inform the
Emperor of Blefuscu of my disgrace; this messenger had
orders to represent the great mercy of his master, who was
content to punish me with the loss of my eyes, and who
expected that his brother of Blefuscu would have me sent
back to Lilliput, bound hand and foot, to be punished as
a traitor. The Emperor of Blefuscu answered with many
civil excuses. He said that as for sending me bound, his
brother knew it was impossible. Moreover, though I had
taken away his fleet he was grateful to me for many good
offices I had done him in making the peace. But that both
their Majesties would soon be made easy; for I had found
a prodigious vessel on the shore, able to carry me on the
sea, which he had given orders to fit up; and he hoped in
a few weeks both empires would be free from me.

With this answer the messenger returned to Lilliput;
and I (though the monarch of Blefuscu secretly offered
me his gracious protection if I would continue in his
service) hastened my departure, resolving never more to put
confidence in princes.

In about a month I was ready to take leave. The
Emperor of Blefuscu, with the Empress and the royal family,
came out of the palace; and I lay down on my face to kiss
their hands, which they graciously gave me. His Majesty
presented me with fifty purses of sprugs (their greatest
gold coin) and his picture at full length, which I put
immediately into one of my gloves, to keep it from being
hurt. Many other ceremonies took place at my departure.

I stored the boat with meat and drink, and took six
cows and two bulls alive, with as many ewes and rams,
intending to carry them into my own country; and to feed
them on board, I had a good bundle of hay and a bag of
corn. I would gladly have taken a dozen of the natives;
but this was a thing the Emperor would by no means permit,
and besides a diligent search into my pockets, his
Majesty pledged my honor not to carry away any of his
subjects, though with their own consent and desire.

Having thus prepared all things as well as I was able,
I set sail. When I had made twenty-four leagues, by my
reckoning, from the island of Blefuscu, I saw a sail steering
to the northeast. I hailed her, but could get no
answer; yet I found I gained upon her, for the wind
slackened; and in half an hour she spied me, and
discharged a gun. I came up with her between five and six
in the evening, Sept. 26, 1701; but my heart leaped within
me to see her English colors. I put my cows and sheep
into my coat pockets, and got on board with all my little
cargo. The captain received me with kindness, and asked
me to tell him what place I came from last; but at my
answer he thought I was raving. However, I took my black
cattle and sheep out of my pocket, which, after great
astonishment, clearly convinced him.

We arrived in England on the 13th of April, 1702. I
stayed two months with my wife and family; but my
eager desire to see foreign countries would suffer me to
remain no longer. However, while in England I made
great profit by showing my cattle to persons of quality
and others; and before I began my second voyage I sold
them for 600l. I left 1500l. with my wife, and fixed her in
a good house; then taking leave of her and my boy and
girl, with tears on both sides, I sailed on board the

[1] Swift.


Once upon a time there was a man who had a meadow
which lay on the side of a mountain, and in the meadow
there was a barn in which he stored hay. But there had
not been much hay in the barn for the last two years, for
every St. John's eve, when the grass was in the height
of its vigor, it was all eaten clean up, just as if a whole
flock of sheep had gnawed it down to the ground during
the night. This happened once, and it happened twice,
but then the man got tired of losing his crop, and said
to his sons--he had three of them, and the third was
called Cinderlad--that one of them must go and sleep in
the barn on St. John's night, for it was absurd to let the
grass be eaten up again, blade and stalk, as it had been
the last two years, and the one who went to watch must
keep a sharp look-out, the man said.

The eldest was quite willing to go to the meadow; he
would watch the grass, he said, and he would do it so
well that neither man, nor beast, nor even the devil
himself should have any of it. So when evening came he went
to the barn, and lay down to sleep, but when night was
drawing near there was such a rumbling and such an
earthquake that the walls and roof shook again, and the
lad jumped up and took to his heels as fast as he could,
and never even looked back, and the barn remained empty
that year just as it had been for the last two.

Next St. John's eve the man again said that he could
not go on in this way, losing all the grass in the outlying
field year after year, and that one of his sons must just
go there and watch it, and watch well too. So the next
oldest son was willing to show what he could do. He went
to the barn and lay down to sleep, as his brother had
done; but when night was drawing near there was a great
rumbling, and then an earthquake, which was even worse
than that on the former St. John's night, and when the
youth heard it he was terrified, and went off, running as if
for a wager.

The year after, it was Cinderlad's turn, but when he
made ready to go the others laughed at him, and mocked
him. "Well, you are just the right one to watch the hay,
you who have never learned anything but how to sit
among the ashes and bake yourself!" said they. Cinderlad,
however, did not trouble himself about what they
said, but when evening drew near rambled away to the
outlying field. When he got there he went into the barn
and lay down, but in about an hour's time the rumbling
and creaking began, and it was frightful to hear it. "Well,
if it gets no worse than that, I can manage to stand it,"
thought Cinderlad. In a little time the creaking began
again, and the earth quaked so that all the hay flew
about the boy. "Oh! if it gets no worse than that I can
manage to stand it," thought Cinderlad. But then came
a third rumbling, and a third earthquake, so violent that
the boy thought the walls and roof had fallen down, but
when that was over everything suddenly grew as still as
death around him. "I am pretty sure that it will come
again," thought Cinderlad; but no, it did not. Everything
was quiet, and everything stayed quiet, and when
he had lain still a short time he heard something that
sounded as if a horse were standing chewing just outside
the barn door. He stole away to the door, which was ajar,
to see what was there, and a horse was standing eating.
It was so big, and fat, and fine a horse that Cinderlad had
never seen one like it before, and a saddle and bridle lay
upon it, and a complete suit of armor for a knight, and
everything was of copper, and so bright that it shone
again. "Ha, ha! it is thou who eatest up our hay then,"
thought the boy; "but I will stop that." So he made
haste, and took out his steel for striking fire, and threw
it over the horse, and then it had no power to stir from
the spot, and became so tame that the boy could do what
he liked with it. So he mounted it and rode away to a
place which no one knew of but himself, and there he tied
it up. When he went home again his brothers laughed and
asked how he had got on.

"You didn't lie long in the barn, if even you have been
so far as the field!" said they.

"I lay in the barn till the sun rose, but I saw nothing
and heard nothing, not I," said the boy. "God knows
what there was to make you two so frightened."

"Well, we shall soon see whether you have watched the
meadow or not," answered the brothers, but when they
got there the grass was all standing just as long and as
thick as it had been the night before.

The next St. John's eve it was the same thing, once
again: neither of the two brothers dared to go to the outlying
field to watch the crop, but Cinderlad went, and
everything happened exactly the same as on the previous
St. John's eve: first there was a rumbling and an earthquake,
and then there was another, and then a third: but
all three earthquakes were much, very much more violent
than they had been the year before. Then everything
became still as death again, and the boy heard something
chewing outside the barn door, so he stole as softly as he
could to the door, which was slightly ajar, and again there
was a horse standing close by the wall of the house, eating
and chewing, and it was far larger and fatter than the
first horse, and it had a saddle on its back, and a bridle
was on it too, and a full suit of armor for a knight, all of
bright silver, and as beautiful as anyone could wish to
see. "Ho, ho!" thought the boy, "is it thou who eatest
up our hay in the night? but I will put a stop to that."
So he took out his steel for striking fire, and threw it over
the horse's mane, and the beast stood there as quiet as a
lamb. Then the boy rode this horse, too, away to the
place where he kept the other, and then went home again.

"I suppose you will tell us that you have watched well
again this time," said the brothers.

"Well, so I have," said Cinderlad. So they went there
again, and there the grass was, standing as high and as
thick as it had been before, but that did not make them
any kinder to Cinderlad.

When the third St. John's night came neither of the
two elder brothers dared to lie in the outlying barn to
watch the grass, for they had been so heartily frightened
the night that they had slept there that they could not
get over it, but Cinderlad dared to go, and everything
happened just the same as on the two former nights.
There were three earthquakes, each worse than the other,
and the last flung the boy from one wall of the barn to the
other, but then everything suddenly became still as
death. When he had lain quietly a short time, he heard
something chewing outside the barn door; then he once
more stole to the door, which was slightly ajar, and
behold, a horse was standing just outside it, which was much
larger and fatter than the two others he had caught. "Ho,
ho! it is thou, then, who art eating up our hay this time,"
thought the boy; "but I will put a stop to that." So he
pulled out his steel for striking fire, and threw it over the
horse, and it stood as still as if it had been nailed to the
field, and the boy could do just what he liked with it.
Then he mounted it and rode away to the place where he
had the two others, and then he went home again. Then
the two brothers mocked him just as they had done before,
and told him that they could see that he must have
watched the grass very carefully that night, for he looked
just as if he were walking in his sleep; but Cinderlad did
not trouble himself about that, but just bade them go to
the field and see. They did go, and this time too the
grass was standing, looking as fine and as thick as ever.

The King of the country in which Cinderlad's father
dwelt had a daughter whom he would give to no one who
could not ride up to the top of the glass hill, for there was
a high, high hill of glass, slippery as ice, and it was close
to the King's palace. Upon the very top of this the King's
daughter was to sit with three gold apples in her lap, and
the man who could ride up and take the three golden
apples should marry her, and have half the kingdom. The
King had this proclaimed in every church in the whole
kingdom, and in many other kingdoms too. The Princess
was very beautiful, and all who saw her fell violently in
love with her, even in spite of themselves. So it is
needless to say that all the princes and knights were eager
to win her, and half the kingdom besides, and that for
this cause they came riding thither from the very end
of the world, dressed so splendidly that their raiments
gleamed in the sunshine, and riding on horses which
seemed to dance as they went, and there was not one of
these princes who did not think that he was sure to win
the Princess.

When the day appointed by the King had come, there
was such a host of knights and princes under the glass
hill that they seemed to swarm, and everyone who could
walk or even creep was there too, to see who won the
King's daughter. Cinderlad's two brothers were there
too, but they would not hear of letting him go with
them, for he was so dirty and black with sleeping and
grubbing among the ashes that they said everyone would
laugh at them if they were seen in the company of such
an oaf.

"Well, then, I will go all alone by myself," said

When the two brothers got to the glass hill, all the
princes and knights were trying to ride up it, and their
horses were in a foam; but it was all in vain, for no sooner
did the horses set foot upon the hill than down they
slipped, and there was not one which could get even so
much as a couple of yards up. Nor was that strange,
for the hill was as smooth as a glass window-pane, and as
steep as the side of a house. But they were all eager
to win the King's daughter and half the kingdom, so
they rode and they slipped, and thus it went on. At
length all the horses were so tired that they could do no
more, and so hot that the foam dropped from them and
the riders were forced to give up the attempt. The King
was just thinking that he would cause it to be proclaimed
that the riding should begin afresh on the following day,
when perhaps it might go better, when suddenly a knight
came riding up on so fine a horse that no one had ever
seen the like of it before, and the knight had armor of
copper, and his bridle was of copper too, and all his
accoutrements were so bright that they shone again. The
other knights all called out to him that he might just
as well spare himself the trouble of trying to ride up the
glass hill, for it was of no use to try; but he did not heed
them, and rode straight off to it, and went up as if it
were nothing at all. Thus he rode for a long way--it
may have been a third part of the way up--but when he
had got so far he turned his horse round and rode down
again. But the Princess thought that she had never
yet seen so handsome a knight, and while he was riding
up she was sitting thinking, "Oh! how I hope he may be
able to come up to the top!" And when she saw that
he was turning his horse back she threw one of the golden
apples down after him, and it rolled into his shoe. But
when he had come down from off the hill he rode away,
and that so fast that no one knew what had become
of him.

So all the princes and knights were bidden to present
themselves before the King that night, so that he who
had ridden so far up the glass hill might show the golden
apple which the King's daughter had thrown down. But
no one had anything to show. One knight presented
himself after the other, and none could show the apple.

At night, too, Cinderlad's brothers came home again
and had a long story to tell about riding up the glass
hill. At first, they said, there was not one who was able
to get even 50 much as one step up, but then came a
knight who had armor of copper, and a bridle of copper,
and his armor and trappings were so bright that they
shone to a great distance, and it was something like a
sight to see him riding. He rode one-third of the way
up the glass hill, and he could easily have ridden the
whole of it if he had liked; but he had turned back, for
he had made up his mind that that was enough for
once. "Oh! I should have liked to see him too, that I
should," said Cinderlad, who was as usual sitting by the
chimney among the cinders. "You, indeed!" said the
brothers, "you look as if you were fit to be among such
great lords, nasty beast that you are to sit there!"

Next day the brothers were for setting out again, and
this time too Cinderlad begged them to let him go with
them and see who rode; but no, they said he was not fit
to do that, for he was much too ugly and dirty. "Well,
well, then I will go all alone by myself," said Cinderlad.
So the brothers went to the glass hill, and all the princes
and knights began to ride again, and this time they had
taken care to roughen the shoes of their horses; but that
did not help them: they rode and they slipped as they
had done the day before, and not one of them could get
even so far as a yard up the hill. When they had tired
out their horses, so that they could do no more, they
again had to stop altogether. But just as the King
was thinking that it would be well to proclaim that the
riding should take place next day for the last time, so
that they might have one more chance, he suddenly
bethought himself that it would be well to wait a little
longer to see if the knight in copper armor would come
on this day too. But nothing was to be seen of him.
Just as they were still looking for him, however, came a
knight riding on a steed that was much, much finer than
that which the knight in copper armor had ridden, and
this knight had silver armor and a silver saddle and
bridle, and all were so bright that they shone and
glistened when he was a long way off. Again the other knights
called to him, and said that he might just as well give
up the attempt to ride up the glass hill, for it was useless
to try; but the knight paid no heed to that, but rode
straight away to the glass hill, and went still farther up
than the knight in copper armor had gone; but when he
had ridden two-thirds of the way up he turned his horse
around, and rode down again. The Princess liked this
knight still better than she had liked the other, and sat
longing that he might be able to get up above, and when
she saw him turning back she threw the second apple
after him, and it rolled into his shoe, and as soon as he
had got down the glass hill he rode away so fast that no
one could see what had become of him.

In the evening, when everyone was to appear before
the King and Princess, in order that he who had the
golden apple might show it, one knight went in after the
other, but none of them had a golden apple to show.

At night the two brothers went home as they had
done the night before, and told how things had gone,
and how everyone had ridden, but no one had been able
to get up the hill. "But last of all," they said, "came
one in silver armor, and he had a silver bridle on his
horse, and a silver saddle, and oh, but he could ride!
He took his horse two-thirds of the way up the hill, but
then he turned back. He was a fine fellow," said the
brothers, "and the Princess threw the second golden
apple to him!"

"Oh, how I should have liked to see him too!" said

"Oh, indeed! He was a little brighter than the ashes
that you sit grubbing among, you dirty black creature!"
said the brothers.

On the third day everything went just as on the former
days. Cinderlad wanted to go with them to look at the
riding, but the two brothers would not have him in their
company, and when they got to the glass hill there was
no one who could ride even so far as a yard up it, and
everyone waited for the knight in silver armor, but he
was neither to be seen nor heard of. At last, after a
long time, came a knight riding upon a horse that was
such a fine one, its equal had never yet been seen. The
knight had golden armor, and the horse a golden saddle
and bridle, and these were all so bright that they shone
and dazzled everyone, even while the knight was still
at a great distance. The other princes and knights were
not able even to call to tell him how useless it was to try
to ascend the hill, so amazed were they at sight of his
magnificence. He rode straight away to the glass hill,
and galloped up it as if it were no hill at all, so that the
Princess had not even time to wish that he might get
up the whole way. As soon as he had ridden to the top,
he took the third golden apple from the lap of the Princess
and then turned his horse about and rode down
again, and vanished from their sight before anyone was
able to say a word to him.

When the two brothers came home again at night they
had much to tell of how the riding had gone off that day,
and at last they told about the knight in the golden
armor too. "He was a fine fellow, that was! Such
another splendid knight is not to be found on earth!"
said the brothers.

"Oh, how I should have liked to see him too!" said

"Well, he shone nearly as brightly as the coal-heaps
that thou art always lying raking among, dirty black
creature that thou art!" said the brothers.

Next day all the knights and princes were to appear
before the King and Princess--it had been too late for
them to do it the night before--in order that he who had
the golden apple might produce it. They all went in
turn, first princes, and then knights, but none of them
had a golden apple.

"But somebody must have it," said the King, "for
with our own eyes we all saw a man ride up and take it."
So he commanded that everyone in the kingdom should
come to the palace, and see if he could show the apple.
And one after the other they all came, but no one had
the golden apple, and after a long, long time Cinderlad's
two brothers came likewise. They were the last of all,
so the King inquired of them if there was no one else in
the kingdom left to come.

"Oh! yes, we have a brother," said the two, "but he
never got the golden apple! He never left the
cinder-heap on any of the three days."

"Never mind that," said the King; "as everyone else
has come to the palace, let him come too."

So Cinderlad was forced to go to the King's palace.

"Hast thou the golden apple?" asked the King.

"Yes, here is the first, and here is the second, and here
is the third, too," said Cinderlad, and he took all three
apples out of his pocket, and with that drew off his sooty
rags, and appeared there before them in his bright golden
armor, which gleamed as he stood.

"Thou shalt have my daughter, and the half of my
kingdom, and thou hast well earned both!" said the
King. So there was a wedding, and Cinderlad got the
King's daughter, and everyone made merry at the wedding,
for all of them could make merry, though they
could not ride up the glass hill, and if they have not left
off their merry-making they must be at it still.[1]

[1] Asbjornsen and Moe.


There was a sultan, who had three sons and a niece.
The eldest of the Princes was called Houssain, the second
Ali, the youngest Ahmed, and the Princess, his niece,

The Princess Nouronnihar was the daughter of the
younger brother of the Sultan, who died, and left the
Princess very young. The Sultan took upon himself the
care of his daughter's education, and brought her up in
his palace with the three Princes, proposing to marry
her when she arrived at a proper age, and to contract an
alliance with some neighboring prince by that means.
But when he perceived that the three Princes, his sons,
loved her passionately, he thought more seriously on
that affair. He was very much concerned; the difficulty
he foresaw was to make them agree, and that the two
youngest should consent to yield her up to their elder
brother. As he found them positively obstinate, he
sent for them all together, and said to them: "Children,
since for your good and quiet I have not been able to
persuade you no longer to aspire to the Princess, your
cousin, I think it would not be amiss if every one traveled
separately into different countries, so that you might not
meet each other. And, as you know I am very curious,
and delight in everything that's singular, I promise my
niece in marriage to him that shall bring me the most
extraordinary rarity; and for the purchase of the rarity
you shall go in search after, and the expense of traveling,
I will give you every one a sum of money."

As the three Princes were always submissive and
obedient to the Sultan's will, and each flattered himself
fortune might prove favorable to him, they all consented
to it. The Sultan paid them the money he promised
them; and that very day they gave orders for the
preparations for their travels, and took their leave of the
Sultan, that they might be the more ready to go the
next morning. Accordingly they all set out at the same
gate of the city, each dressed like a merchant, attended
by an officer of confidence dressed like a slave, and all
well mounted and equipped. They went the first day's
journey together, and lay all at an inn, where the road
was divided into three different tracts. At night, when
they were at supper together, they all agreed to travel
for a year, and to meet at that inn; and that the first
that came should wait for the rest; that, as they had
all three taken their leave together of the Sultan, they
might all return together. The next morning by break
of day, after they had embraced and wished each other
good success, they mounted their horses and took each
a different road.

Prince Houssain, the eldest brother, arrived at
Bisnagar, the capital of the kingdom of that name, and the
residence of its king. He went and lodged at a khan
appointed for foreign merchants; and, having learned
that there were four principal divisions where merchants
of all sorts sold their commodities, and kept shops, and
in the midst of which stood the castle, or rather the
King's palace, he went to one of these divisions the next

Prince Houssain could not view this division without
admiration. It was large, and divided into several
streets, all vaulted and shaded from the sun, and yet
very light too. The shops were all of a size, and all that
dealt in the same sort of goods lived in one street; as
also the handicrafts-men, who kept their shops in the
smaller streets.

The multitude of shops, stocked with all sorts of
merchandise, as the finest linens from several parts of India,
some painted in the most lively colors, and representing
beasts, trees, and flowers; silks and brocades from
Persia, China, and other places, porcelain both from
Japan and China, and tapestries, surprised him so much
that he knew not how to believe his own eyes; but when
he came to the goldsmiths and jewelers he was in a kind
of ecstacy to behold such prodigious quantities of wrought
gold and silver, and was dazzled by the lustre of the
pearls, diamonds, rubies, emeralds, and other jewels
exposed to sale.

Another thing Prince Houssain particularly admired
was the great number of rose-sellers who crowded the
streets; for the Indians are so great lovers of that flower
that no one will stir without a nosegay in his hand or a
garland on his head; and the merchants keep them in
pots in their shops, that the air is perfectly perfumed.

After Prince Houssain had run through that division,
street by street, his thoughts fully employed on the
riches he had seen, he was very much tired, which a
merchant perceiving, civilly invited him to sit down in his
shop, and he accepted; but had not been sat down long
before he saw a crier pass by with a piece of tapestry
on his arm, about six feet square, and cried at thirty
purses. The Prince called to the crier, and asked to see
the tapestry, which seemed to him to be valued at an
exorbitant price, not only for the size of it, but the
meanness of the stuff; when he had examined it well, he told
the crier that he could not comprehend how so small a
piece of tapestry, and of so indifferent appearance, could
be set at so high a price.

The crier, who took him for a merchant, replied: "If
this price seems so extravagant to you, your amazement
will be greater when I tell you I have orders to raise it
to forty purses, and not to part with it under."
"Certainly," answered Prince Houssain, "it must have
something very extraordinary in it, which I know nothing
of." "You have guessed it, sir," replied the crier, "and
will own it when you come to know that whoever sits
on this piece of tapestry may be transported in an
instant wherever he desires to be, without being stopped
by any obstacle."

At this discourse of the crier the Prince of the Indies,
considering that the principal motive of his travel was
to carry the Sultan, his father, home some singular
rarity, thought that he could not meet with any which
could give him more satisfaction. "If the tapestry,"
said he to the crier, "has the virtue you assign it, I shall
not think forty purses too much, but shall make you a
present besides." "Sir," replied the crier, "I have told
you the truth; and it is an easy matter to convince you
of it, as soon as you have made the bargain for forty
purses, on condition I show you the experiment. But,
as I suppose you have not so much about you, and to
receive them I must go with you to your khan, where
you lodge, with the leave of the master of the shop, we
will go into the back shop, and I will spread the tapestry;
and when we have both sat down, and you have formed
the wish to be transported into your apartment of the
khan, if we are not transported thither it shall be no
bargain, and you shall be at your liberty. As to your
present, though I am paid for my trouble by the seller,
I shall receive it as a favor, and be very much obliged to
you, and thankful."

On the credit of the crier, the Prince accepted the
conditions, and concluded the bargain; and, having got the
master's leave, they went into his back shop; they both
sat down on it, and as soon as the Prince formed his
wish to be transported into his apartment at the khan
he presently found himself and the crier there; and, as he
wanted not a more sufficient proof of the virtue of the
tapestry, he counted the crier out forty pieces of gold,
and gave him twenty pieces for himself.

In this manner Prince Houssain became the possessor
of the tapestry, and was overjoyed that at his arrival
at Bisnagar he had found so rare a piece, which he never
disputed would gain him the hand of Nouronnihar. In
short, he looked upon it as an impossible thing for the
Princes his younger brothers to meet with anything
to be compared with it. It was in his power, by sitting
on his tapestry, to be at the place of meeting that very
day; but, as he was obliged to stay there for his brothers,
as they had agreed, and as he was curious to see the King
of Bisnagar and his Court, and to inform himself of the
strength, laws, customs, and religion of the kingdom,
he chose to make a longer abode there, and to spend
some months in satisfying his curiosity.

Prince Houssain might have made a longer abode in
the kingdom and Court of Bisnagar, but he was so eager
to be nearer the Princess that, spreading the tapestry,
he and the officer he had brought with him sat down,
and as soon as he had formed his wish were transported
to the inn at which he and his brothers were to meet,
and where he passed for a merchant till they came.

Prince Ali, Prince Houssain's second brother, who
designed to travel into Persia, took the road, having three
days after he parted with his brothers joined a caravan,
and after four days' travel arrived at Schiraz, which was
the capital of the kingdom of Persia. Here he passed
for a jeweler.

The next morning Prince Ali, who traveled only for
his pleasure, and had brought nothing but just necessaries
along with him, after he had dressed himself, took
a walk into that part of the town which they at Schiraz
called the bezestein.

Among all the criers who passed backward and forward
with several sorts of goods, offering to sell them,
he was not a little surprised to see one who held an ivory
telescope in his hand of about a foot in length and the
thickness of a man's thumb, and cried it at thirty purses.
At first he thought the crier mad, and to inform himself
went to a shop, and said to the merchant, who stood at
the door: "Pray, sir, is not that man" (pointing to the
crier who cried the ivory perspective glass at thirty
purses) "mad? If he is not, I am very much deceived."

"Indeed, sir," answered the merchant, "he was in his
right senses yesterday; I can assure you he is one of the
ablest criers we have, and the most employed of any
when anything valuable is to be sold. And if he cries
the ivory perspective glass at thirty purses it must be
worth as much or more, on some account or other. He
will come by presently, and we will call him, and you
shall be satisfied; in the meantime sit down on my sofa,
and rest yourself."

Prince Ali accepted the merchant's obliging offer, and
presently afterward the crier passed by. The merchant
called him by his name, and, pointing to the Prince,
said to him: "Tell that gentleman, who asked me if
you were in your right senses, what you mean by crying
that ivory perspective glass, which seems not to be
worth much, at thirty purses. I should be very much
amazed myself if I did not know you." The crier,
addressing himself to Prince Ali, said: "Sir, you are not
the only person that takes me for a madman on account
of this perspective glass. You shall judge yourself
whether I am or no, when I have told you its property
and I hope you will value it at as high a price as those I
have showed it to already, who had as bad an opinion
of me as you.

"First, sir," pursued the crier, presenting the ivory
pipe to the Prince, "observe that this pipe is furnished
with a glass at both ends; and consider that by looking
through one of them you see whatever object you wish
to behold." "I am," said the Prince, "ready to make you
all imaginable reparation for the scandal I have thrown
on you if you will make the truth of what you advance
appear," and as he had the ivory pipe in his hand, after
he had looked at the two glasses he said: "Show me at
which of these ends I must look that I may be satisfied."
The crier presently showed him, and he looked
through, wishing at the same time to see the Sultan his
father, whom he immediately beheld in perfect health,
set on his throne, in the midst of his council. Afterward,
as there was nothing in the world so dear to him,
after the Sultan, as the Princess Nouronnihar, he wished
to see her; and saw her at her toilet laughing, and in a
pleasant humor, with her women about her.

Prince Ali wanted no other proof to be persuaded that
this perspective glass was the most valuable thing in
the world, and believed that if he should neglect to
purchase it he should never meet again with such another
rarity. He therefore took the crier with him to the
khan where he lodged, and counted him out the money,
and received the perspective glass.

Prince Ali was overjoyed at his bargain, and
persuaded himself that, as his brothers would not be able
to meet with anything so rare and admirable, the Princess
Nouronnihar would be the recompense of his fatigue
and trouble; that he thought of nothing but visiting the
Court of Persia incognito, and seeing whatever was
curious in Schiraz and thereabouts, till the caravan
with which he came returned back to the Indies. As
soon as the caravan was ready to set out, the Prince
joined them, and arrived happily without any accident
or trouble, otherwise than the length of the journey and
fatigue of traveling, at the place of rendezvous, where he
found Prince Houssain, and both waited for Prince

Prince Ahmed, who took the road of Samarcand, the
next day after his arrival there went, as his brothers
had done, into the bezestein, where he had not walked
long but heard a crier, who had an artificial apple in
his hand, cry it at five and thirty purses; upon which
he stopped the crier, and said to him: "Let me see that
apple, and tell me what virtue and extraordinary
properties it has, to be valued at so high a rate." "Sir,"
said the crier, giving it into his hand, "if you look at the
outside of this apple, it is very worthless, but if you
consider its properties, virtues, and the great use and benefit
it is to mankind, you will say it is no price for it, and that
he who possesses it is master of a great treasure. In
short, it cures all sick persons of the most mortal diseases;
and if the patient is dying it will recover him immediately
and restore him to perfect health; and this is
done after the easiest manner in the world, which is by
the patient's smelling the apple."

"If I may believe you," replied Prince Ahmed, "the
virtues of this apple are wonderful, and it is invaluable;
but what ground have I, for all you tell me, to be
persuaded of the truth of this matter?" "Sir," replied the
crier, "the thing is known and averred by the whole
city of Samarcand; but, without going any further, ask
all these merchants you see here, and hear what they
say. You will find several of them will tell you they
had not been alive this day if they had not made use of
this excellent remedy. And, that you may better
comprehend what it is, I must tell you it is the fruit of the
study and experiments of a celebrated philosopher of
this city, who applied himself all his lifetime to the study
and knowledge of the virtues of plants and minerals,
and at last attained to this composition, by which he
performed such surprising cures in this town as will
never be forgot, but died suddenly himself, before he
could apply his sovereign remedy, and left his wife and
a great many young children behind him, in very indifferent
circumstances, who, to support her family and
provide for her children, is resolved to sell it."

While the crier informed Prince Ahmed of the virtues
of the artificial apple, a great many persons came about
them and confirmed what he said; and one among the
rest said he had a friend dangerously ill, whose life was
despaired of; and that was a favorable opportunity to
show Prince Ahmed the experiment. Upon which
Prince Ahmed told the crier he would give him forty
purses if he cured the sick person.

The crier, who had orders to sell it at that price, said
to Prince Ahmed: "Come, sir, let us go and make the
experiment, and the apple shall be yours; and I can assure
you that it will always have the desired effect."
In short, the experiment succeeded, and the Prince, after
he had counted out to the crier forty purses, and he had
delivered the apple to him, waited patiently for the first
caravan that should return to the Indies, and arrived
in perfect health at the inn where the Princes Houssain
and Ali waited for him.

When the Princes met they showed each other their
treasures, and immediately saw through the glass that
the Princess was dying. They then sat down on the
carpet, wished themselves with her, and were there in a

Prince Ahmed no sooner perceived himself in Nouronnihar's
chamber than he rose off the tapestry, as did
also the other two Princes, and went to the bedside, and
put the apple under her nose; some moments after the
Princess opened her eyes, and turned her head from
one side to another, looking at the persons who stood
about her; and then rose up in the bed, and asked to be
dressed, just as if she had waked out of a sound sleep.
Her women having presently informed her, in a manner
that showed their joy, that she was obliged to the
three Princes for the sudden recovery of her health, and
particularly to Prince Ahmed, she immediately expressed
her joy to see them, and thanked them all together, and
afterward Prince Ahmed in particular.

While the Princess was dressing the Princes went to
throw themselves at the Sultan their father's feet, and
pay their respects to him. But when they came before
him they found he had been informed of their arrival
by the chief of the Princess's eunuchs, and by what
means the Princess had been perfectly cured. The
Sultan received and embraced them with the greatest
joy, both for their return and the recovery of the
Princess his niece, whom he loved as well as if she had been
his own daughter, and who had been given over by the
physicians. After the usual ceremonies and compliments
the Princes presented each his rarity: Prince
Houssain his tapestry, which he had taken care not to
leave behind him in the Princess's chamber; Prince Ali
his ivory perspective glass, and Prince Ahmed his
artificial apple; and after each had commended their present,
when they put it into the Sultan's hands, they begged
of him to pronounce their fate, and declare to which
of them he would give the Princess Nouronnihar for a
wife, according to his promise.

The Sultan of the Indies, having heard, without
interrupting them, all that the Princes could represent
further about their rarities, and being well informed of
what had happened in relation to the Princess Nouronnihar's
cure, remained some time silent, as if he were
thinking on what answer he should make. At last he
broke the silence, and said to them: "I would declare
for one of you children with a great deal of pleasure if
I could do it with justice; but consider whether I can
do it or no. 'Tis true, Prince Ahmed, the Princess my
niece is obliged to your artificial apple for her cure; but
I must ask you whether or no you could have been so
serviceable to her if you had not known by Prince Ali's
perspective glass the danger she was in, and if Prince
Houssain's tapestry had not brought you so soon. Your
perspective glass, Prince Ali, informed you and your
brothers that you were like to lose the Princess your
cousin, and there you must own a great obligation.

"You must also grant that that knowledge would have
been of no service without the artificial apple and the
tapestry. And lastly, Prince Houssain, the Princess
would be very ungrateful if she should not show her
acknowledgment of the service of your tapestry, which
was so necessary a means toward her cure. But consider,
it would have been of little use if you had not
been acquainted with the Princess's illness by Prince
Ali's glass, and Prince Ahmed had not applied his
artificial apple. Therefore, as neither tapestry, ivory
perspective glass, nor artificial apple have the least
preference one before the other, but, on the contrary, there's a
perfect equality, I cannot grant the Princess to ally one
of you; and the only fruit you have reaped from your
travels is the glory of having equally contributed to
restore her health.

"If all this be true," added the Sultan, "you see that
I must have recourse to other means to determine certainly
in the choice I ought to make among you; and
that, as there is time enough between this and night,
I'll do it to-day. Go and get each of you a bow and
arrow, and repair to the great plain, where they exercise
horses. I'll soon come to you, and declare I will give
the Princess Nouronnihar to him that shoots the farthest."

The three Princes had nothing to say against the
decision of the Sultan. When they were out of his presence
they each provided themselves with a bow and arrow,
which they delivered to one of their officers, and
went to the plain appointed, followed by a great
concourse of people.

The Sultan did not make them wait long for him,
and as soon as he arrived Prince Houssain, as the eldest,
took his bow and arrow and shot first; Prince Ali shot
next, and much beyond him; and Prince Ahmed last
of all, but it so happened that nobody could see where
his arrow fell; and, notwithstanding all the diligence that
was used by himself and everybody else, it was not to
be found far or near. And though it was believed that
he shot the farthest, and that he therefore deserved the
Princess Nouronnihar, it was, however, necessary that
his arrow should be found to make the matter more
evident and certain; and, notwithstanding his remonstrance,
the Sultan judged in favor of Prince Ali, and
gave orders for preparations to be made for the wedding,
which was celebrated a few days after with great

Prince Houssain would not honor the feast with his
presence. In short, his grief was so violent and insupportable
that he left the Court, and renounced all right
of succession to the crown, to turn hermit.

Prince Ahmed, too, did not come to Prince Ali's and
the Princess Nouronnihar's wedding any more than his
brother Houssain, but did not renounce the world as
he had done. But, as he could not imagine what had
become of his arrow, he stole away from his attendants
and resolved to search after it, that he might not have
anything to reproach himself with. With this intent he
went to the place where the Princes Houssain's and
Ali's were gathered up, and, going straight forward
from there, looking carefully on both sides of him, he
went so far that at last he began to think his labor was
all in vain; but yet he could not help going forward till
he came to some steep craggy rocks, which were bounds
to his journey, and were situated in a barren country,
about four leagues distant from where he set out.


When Prince Ahmed came pretty nigh to these rocks
he perceived an arrow, which he gathered up, looked
earnestly at it, and was in the greatest astonishment
to find it was the same he shot away. "Certainly,"
said he to himself, "neither I nor any man living could
shoot an arrow so far," and, finding it laid flat, not
sticking into the ground, he judged that it rebounded
against the rock. "There must be some mystery in
this," said he to himself again, "and it may be
advantageous to me. Perhaps fortune, to make me amends
for depriving me of what I thought the greatest happiness,
may have reserved a greater blessing for my comfort."

As these rocks were full of caves and some of those
caves were deep, the Prince entered into one, and, looking
about, cast his eyes on an iron door, which seemed
to have no lock, but he feared it was fastened. However,
thrusting against it, it opened, and discovered an
easy descent, but no steps, which he walked down with
his arrow in his hand. At first he thought he was going
into a dark, obscure place, but presently a quite different
light succeeded that which he came out of, and, entering
into a large, spacious place, at about fifty or
sixty paces distant, he perceived a magnificent palace,
which he had not then time enough to look at. At the
same time a lady of majestic port and air advanced as
far as the porch, attended by a large troop of ladies, so
finely dressed and beautiful that it was difficult to
distinguish which was the mistress.

As soon as Prince Ahmed perceived the lady, he made
all imaginable haste to go and pay his respects; and the
lady, on her part, seeing him coming, prevented him from
addressing his discourse to her first, but said to him:
"Come nearer, Prince Ahmed, you are welcome."

It was no small surprise to the Prince to hear himself
named in a place he had never heard of, though so nigh
to his father's capital, and he could not comprehend
how he should be known to a lady who was a stranger
to him. At last he returned the lady's compliment by
throwing himself at her feet, and, rising up again, said
to her:

"Madam, I return you a thousand thanks for the
assurance you give me of a welcome to a place where I
believed my imprudent curiosity had made me penetrate
too far. But, madam, may I, without being
guilty of ill manners, dare to ask you by what adventure
you know me? and how you, who live in the same neighborhood
with me, should be so great a stranger to me?"

"Prince," said the lady, "let us go into the hall, there
I will gratify you in your request."

After these words the lady led Prince Ahmed into the
hall. Then she sat down on a sofa, and when the Prince
by her entreaty had done the same she said: "You are
surprised, you say, that I should know you and not be
known by you, but you will be no longer surprised when
I inform you who I am. You are undoubtedly sensible
that your religion teaches you to believe that the world
is inhabited by genies as well as men. I am the daughter
of one of the most powerful and distinguished genies,
and my name is Paribanou. The only thing that I have
to add is, that you seemed to me worthy of a more happy
fate than that of possessing the Princess Nouronnihar;
and, that you might attain to it, I was present when
you drew your arrow, and foresaw it would not go beyond
Prince Houssain's. I took it in the air, and gave
it the necessary motion to strike against the rocks near
which you found it, and I tell you that it lies in your
power to make use of the favorable opportunity which
presents itself to make you happy."

As the Fairy Paribanou pronounced these last words
with a different tone, and looked, at the same time,
tenderly upon Prince Ahmed, with a modest blush on her
cheeks, it was no hard matter for the Prince to comprehend
what happiness she meant. He presently considered
that the Princess Nouronnihar could never be his and
that the Fairy Paribanou excelled her infinitely in
beauty, agreeableness, wit, and, as much as he could
conjecture by the magnificence of the palace, in immense
riches. He blessed the moment that he thought of seeking
after his arrow a second time, and, yielding to his
love, "Madam," replied he, "should I all my life have
the happiness of being your slave, and the admirer of
the many charms which ravish my soul, I should think
myself the most blessed of men. Pardon in me the boldness
which inspires me to ask this favor, and don't refuse
to admit me into your Court, a prince who is entirely
devoted to you."

"Prince," answered the Fairy, "will you not pledge
your faith to me, as well as I give mine to you?" "Yes,
madam," replied the Prince, in an ecstacy of joy; "what
can I do better, and with greater pleasure? Yes, my
sultaness, my queen, I'll give you my heart without the
least reserve." "Then," answered the Fairy, "you are
my husband, and I am your wife. But, as I suppose,"
pursued she, "that you have eaten nothing to-day, a slight
repast shall be served up for you, while preparations are
making for our wedding feast at night, and then I will
show you the apartments of my palace, and you shall
judge if this hall is not the meanest part of it."

Some of the Fairy's women, who came into the hall
with them, and guessed her intentions, went immediately
out, and returned presently with some excellent meats
and wines.

When Prince Ahmed had ate and drunk as much as he
cared for, the Fairy Paribanou carried him through all the
apartments, where he saw diamonds, rubies, emeralds
and all sorts of fine jewels, intermixed with pearls, agate,
jasper, porphyry, and all sorts of the most precious
marbles. But, not to mention the richness of the furniture,
which was inestimable, there was such a profuseness
throughout that the Prince, instead of ever having seen
anything like it, owned that he could not have imagined
that there was anything in the world that could come up
to it. "Prince," said the Fairy, "if you admire my palace
so much, which, indeed, is very beautiful, what would you
say to the palaces of the chief of our genies, which are
much more beautiful, spacious, and magnificent? I could
also charm you with my gardens, but we will let that
alone till another time. Night draws near, and it will be
time to go to supper."

The next hall which the Fairy led the Prince into, and
where the cloth was laid for the feast, was the last apartment
the Prince had not seen, and not in the least inferior
to the others. At his entrance into it he admired the
infinite number of sconces of wax candles perfumed with
amber, the multitude of which, instead of being confused,
were placed with so just a symmetry as formed an agreeable
and pleasant sight. A large side table was set out
with all sorts of gold plate, so finely wrought that the
workmanship was much more valuable than the weight
of the gold. Several choruses of beautiful women richly
dressed, and whose voices were ravishing, began a concert,
accompanied with all sorts of the most harmonious
instruments; and when they were set down at table the Fairy
Paribanou took care to help Prince Ahmed to the most
delicate meats, which she named as she invited him to
eat of them, and which the Prince found to be so
exquisitely nice that he commended them with exaggeration,
and said that the entertainment far surpassed those of
man. He found also the same excellence in the wines,
which neither he nor the Fairy tasted of till the dessert
was served up, which consisted of the choicest sweetmeats
and fruits.

The wedding feast was continued the next day, or,
rather, the days following the celebration were a continual

At the end of six months Prince Ahmed, who always
loved and honored the Sultan his father, conceived a
great desire to know how he was, and that desire could
not be satisfied without his going to see; he told the Fairy
of it, and desired she would give him leave.

"Prince," said she, "go when you please. But first,
don't take it amiss that I give you some advice how you
shall behave yourself where you are going. First, I don't
think it proper for you to tell the Sultan your father of
our marriage, nor of my quality, nor the place where you
have been. Beg of him to be satisfied in knowing you are
happy, and desire no more; and let him know that the sole
end of your visit is to make him easy, and inform him of
your fate."

She appointed twenty gentlemen, well mounted and
equipped, to attend him. When all was ready Prince
Ahmed took his leave of the Fairy, embraced her, and
renewed his promise to return soon. Then his horse,
which was most finely caparisoned, and was as beautiful
a creature as any in the Sultan of Indies' stables, was led
to him, and he mounted him with an extraordinary grace;
and, after he had bid her a last adieu, set forward on his

As it was not a great way to his father's capital, Prince
Ahmed soon arrived there. The people, glad to see him
again, received him with acclamations of joy, and followed
him in crowds to the Sultan's apartment. The Sultan
received and embraced him with great joy, complaining
at the same time, with a fatherly tenderness, of the
affliction his long absence had been to him, which he said was
the more grievous for that, fortune having decided in
favor of Prince Ali his brother, he was afraid he might
have committed some rash action.

The Prince told a story of his adventures without speaking
of the Fairy, whom he said that he must not mention,
and ended: "The only favor I ask of your Majesty is to
give me leave to come often and pay you my respects, and
to know how you do."

"Son," answered the Sultan of the Indies, "I cannot
refuse you the leave you ask me; but I should much
rather you would resolve to stay with me; at least tell me
where I may send to you if you should fail to come, or
when I may think your presence necessary." "Sir,"
replied Prince Ahmed, "what your Majesty asks of me is
part of the mystery I spoke to your Majesty of. I beg
of you to give me leave to remain silent on this head, for I
shall come so frequently that I am afraid that I shall
sooner be thought troublesome than be accused of negligence
in my duty."

The Sultan of the Indies pressed Prince Ahmed no
more, but said to him: "Son, I penetrate no farther into
your secrets, but leave you at your liberty; but can tell
you that you could not do me a greater pleasure than to
come, and by your presence restore to me the joy I have
not felt this long time, and that you shall always be
welcome when you come, without interrupting your business
or pleasure."

Prince Ahmed stayed but three days at the Sultan his
father's Court, and the fourth returned to the Fairy
Paribanou, who did not expect him so soon.

A month after Prince Ahmed's return from paying a
visit to his father, as the Fairy Paribanou had observed
that the Prince, since the time that he gave her an account
of his journey, his discourse with his father, and the leave
he asked to go and see him often, had never talked of the
Sultan, as if there had been no such person in the world,
whereas before he was always speaking of him, she thought
he forebore on her account; therefore she took an opportunity
to say to him one day: "Prince, tell me, have you
forgot the Sultan your father? Don't you remember the
promise you made to go and see him often? For my part
I have not forgot what you told me at your return, and
so put you in mind of it, that you may not be long before
you acquit yourself of your promise."

So Prince Ahmed went the next morning with the same
attendance as before, but much finer, and himself more
magnificently mounted, equipped, and dressed, and was
received by the Sultan with the same joy and satisfaction.
For several months he constantly paid his visits, always
in a richer and finer equipage.

At last some viziers, the Sultan's favorites, who judged
of Prince Ahmed's grandeur and power by the figure he
cut, made the Sultan jealous of his son, saying it was to
be feared he might inveigle himself into the people's favor
and dethrone him.

The Sultan of the Indies was so far from thinking that
Prince Ahmed could be capable of so pernicious a design
as his favorites would make him believe that he said
to them: "You are mistaken; my son loves me, and I am
certain of his tenderness and fidelity, as I have given him
no reason to be disgusted."

But the favorites went on abusing Prince Ahmed till
the Sultan said: "Be it as it will, I don't believe my son
Ahmed is so wicked as you would persuade me he is; how
ever, I am obliged to you for your good advice, and don't
dispute but that it proceeds from your good intentions."

The Sultan of the Indies said this that his favorites
might not know the impressions their discourse had made
on his mind; which had so alarmed him that he resolved
to have Prince Ahmed watched unknown to his grand
vizier. So he sent for a female magician, who was introduced
by a back door into his apartment. "Go immediately,"
he said, "and follow my son, and watch him so well
as to find out where he retires, and bring me word."

The magician left the Sultan, and, knowing the place
where Prince Ahmed found his arrow, went immediately
thither, and hid herself near the rocks, so that nobody
could see her.

The next morning Prince Ahmed set out by daybreak,
without taking leave either of the Sultan or any of his
Court, according to custom. The magician, seeing him
coming, followed him with her eyes, till on a sudden she
lost sight of him and his attendants.

As the rocks were very steep and craggy, they were an
insurmountable barrier, so that the magician judged that
there were but two things for it: either that the Prince
retired into some cavern, or an abode of genies or fairies.
Thereupon she came out of the place where she was hid
and went directly to the hollow way, which she traced
till she came to the farther end, looking carefully about
on all sides; but, notwithstanding all her diligence, could
perceive no opening, not so much as the iron gate which
Prince Ahmed discovered, which was to be seen and
opened to none but men, and only to such whose presence
was agreeable to the Fairy Paribanou.

The magician, who saw it was in vain for her to search
any farther, was obliged to be satisfied with the discovery
she had made, and returned to give the Sultan an account.

The Sultan was very well pleased with the magician's
conduct, and said to her: "Do you as you think fit; I'll
wait patiently the event of your promises," and to
encourage her made her a present of a diamond of great

As Prince Ahmed had obtained the Fairy Paribanou's
leave to go to the Sultan of the Indies' Court once a
month, he never failed, and the magician, knowing the
time, went a day or two before to the foot of the rock
where she lost sight of the Prince and his attendants, and
waited there.

The next morning Prince Ahmed went out, as usual, at
the iron gate, with the same attendants as before, and
passed by the magician, whom he knew not to be such,
and, seeing her lie with her head against the rock, and
complaining as if she were in great pain, he pitied her,
turned his horse about, went to her, and asked her what
was the matter with her, and what he could do to ease her.

The artful sorceress looked at the Prince in a pitiful
manner, without ever lifting up her head, and answered
in broken words and sighs, as if she could hardly fetch
her breath, that she was going to the capital city, but on
the way thither she was taken with so violent a fever that
her strength failed her, and she was forced to lie down
where he saw her, far from any habitation, and without
any hopes of assistance.

"Good woman," replied Prince Ahmed, "you are not so
far from help as you imagine. I am ready to assist you,
and convey you where you will meet with a speedy cure;
only get up, and let one of my people take you behind

At these words the magician, who pretended sickness
only to know where the Prince lived and what he did,
refused not the charitable offer he made her, and that her
actions might correspond with her words she made many
pretended vain endeavors to get up. At the same time
two of the Prince's attendants, alighting off their horses,
helped her up, and set her behind another, and mounted
their horses again, and followed the Prince, who turned
back to the iron gate, which was opened by one of his
retinue who rode before. And when he came into the
outward court of the Fairy, without dismounting himself,
he sent to tell her he wanted to speak with her.

The Fairy Paribanou came with all imaginable haste,
not knowing what made Prince Ahmed return so soon,
who, not giving her time to ask him the reason, said:
"Princess, I desire you would have compassion on this
good woman," pointing to the magician, who was held
up by two of his retinue. "I found her in the condition
you see her in, and promised her the assistance she stands
in need of, and am persuaded that you, out of your own
goodness, as well as upon my entreaty, will not abandon

The Fairy Paribanou, who had her eyes fixed upon the
pretended sick woman all the time that the Prince was
talking to her, ordered two of her women who followed
her to take her from the two men that held her, and carry
her into an apartment of the palace, and take as much
care of her as she would herself.

While the two women executed the Fairy's commands,
she went up to Prince Ahmed, and, whispering in his ear,
said: "Prince, this woman is not so sick as she pretends
to be; and I am very much mistaken if she is not an
impostor, who will be the cause of a great trouble to you.
But don't be concerned, let what will be devised against
you; be persuaded that I will deliver you out of all the
snares that shall be laid for you. Go and pursue your

This discourse of the Fairy's did not in the least frighten
Prince Ahmed. "My Princess," said he, "as I do not
remember I ever did or designed anybody an injury, I
cannot believe anybody can have a thought of doing me
one, but if they have I shall not, nevertheless, forbear
doing good whenever I have an opportunity." Then he
went back to his father's palace.

In the meantime the two women carried the magician
into a very fine apartment, richly furnished. First they
sat her down upon a sofa, with her back supported with
a cushion of gold brocade, while they made a bed on the
same sofa before her, the quilt of which was finely
embroidered with silk, the sheets of the finest linen, and the
coverlet cloth-of-gold. When they had put her into bed
(for the old sorceress pretended that her fever was so
violent she could not help herself in the least) one of the
women went out, and returned soon again with a china
dish in her hand, full of a certain liquor, which she
presented to the magician, while the other helped her to sit
up. "Drink this liquor," said she; "it is the Water of the
Fountain of Lions, and a sovereign remedy against all
fevers whatsoever. You will find the effect of it in less
than an hour's time."

The magician, to dissemble the better, took it after a
great deal of entreaty; but at last she took the china dish,
and, holding back her head, swallowed down the liquor.
When she was laid down again the two women covered
her up. "Lie quiet," said she who brought her the china
cup, "and get a little sleep if you can. We'll leave you,
and hope to find you perfectly cured when we come again
an hour hence."

The two women came again at the time they said they
should, and found the magician up and dressed, and sitting
upon the sofa. "Oh, admirable potion!" she said:
"it has wrought its cure much sooner than you told me it
would, and I shall be able to prosecute my journey."

The two women, who were fairies as well as their
mistress, after they had told the magician how glad they
were that she was cured so soon, walked before her, and
conducted her through several apartments, all more noble
than that wherein she lay, into a large hall, the most richly
and magnificently furnished of all the palace.

Fairy Paribanou sat in this hall on a throne of massive
gold, enriched with diamonds, rubies, and pearls of an
extraordinary size, and attended on each hand by a great
number of beautiful fairies, all richly clothed. At the
sight of so much majesty, the magician was not only
dazzled, but was so amazed that, after she had prostrated
herself before the throne, she could not open her lips to
thank the Fairy as she proposed. However, Paribanou
saved her the trouble, and said to her: "Good woman, I
am glad I had an opportunity to oblige you, and to see
you are able to pursue your journey. I won't detain you,
but perhaps you may not be displeased to see my palace;
follow my women, and they will show it you."

Then the magician went back and related to the Sultan
of the Indies all that had happened, and how very rich
Prince Ahmed was since his marriage with the Fairy,
richer than all the kings in the world, and how there was
danger that he should come and take the throne from his

Though the Sultan of the Indies was very well persuaded
that Prince Ahmed's natural disposition was good, yet
he could not help being concerned at the discourse of the
old sorceress, to whom, when she was taking her leave,
he said: "I thank thee for the pains thou hast taken, and
thy wholesome advice. I am so sensible of the great importance
it is to me that I shall deliberate upon it in council."

Now the favorites advised that the Prince should be
killed, but the magician advised differently: "Make him
give you all kinds of wonderful things, by the Fairy's
help, till she tires of him and sends him away. As, for
example, every time your Majesty goes into the field, you
are obliged to be at a great expense, not only in pavilions
and tents for your army, but likewise in mules and camels
to carry their baggage. Now, might not you engage him
to use his interest with the Fairy to procure you a tent
which might be carried in a man's hand, and which should
be so large as to shelter your whole army against bad

When the magician had finished her speech, the Sultan
asked his favorites if they had anything better to propose;
and, finding them all silent, determined to follow the
magician's advice, as the most reasonable and most agreeable
to his mild government.

Next day the Sultan did as the magician had advised
him, and asked for the pavilion.

Prince Ahmed never expected that the Sultan his
father would have asked such a thing, which at first
appeared so difficult, not to say impossible. Though he
knew not absolutely how great the power of genies and
fairies was, he doubted whether it extended so far as to
compass such a tent as his father desired. At last he
replied: "Though it is with the greatest reluctance imaginable,
I will not fail to ask the favor of my wife your
Majesty desires, but will not promise you to obtain it;
and if I should not have the honor to come again to pay
you my respects that shall be the sign that I have not had
success. But beforehand, I desire you to forgive me, and
consider that you yourself have reduced me to this extremity."

"Son," replied the Sultan of the Indies, "I should be
very sorry if what I ask of you should cause me the
displeasure of never seeing you more. I find you don't know
the power a husband has over a wife; and yours would
show that her love to you was very indifferent if she, with
the power she has of a fairy, should refuse you so trifling
a request as this I desire you to ask of her for my sake."
The Prince went back, and was very sad for fear of
offending the Fairy. She kept pressing him to tell her
what was the matter, and at last he said: "Madam, you
may have observed that hitherto I have been content with
your love, and have never asked you any other favor.
Consider then, I conjure you, that it is not I, but the
Sultan my father, who indiscreetly, or at least I think so,
begs of you a pavilion large enough to shelter him, his
Court, and army from the violence of the weather, and
which a man may carry in his hand. But remember it is
the Sultan my father asks this favor."

"Prince," replied the Fairy, smiling, "I am sorry that
so small a matter should disturb you, and make you so
uneasy as you appeared to me."

Then the Fairy sent for her treasurer, to whom, when
she came, she said: "Nourgihan"--which was her name--"bring
me the largest pavilion in my treasury." Nourgiham
returned presently with the pavilion, which she
could not only hold in her hand, but in the palm of her
hand when she shut her fingers, and presented it to her
mistress, who gave it to Prince Ahmed to look at.

When Prince Ahmed saw the pavilion which the Fairy
called the largest in her treasury, he fancied she had a
mind to jest with him, and thereupon the marks of his
surprise appeared presently in his countenance; which
Paribanou perceiving burst out laughing. "What!
Prince," cried she, "do you think I jest with you? You'll
see presently that I am in earnest. Nourgihan," said she
to her treasurer, taking the tent out of Prince Ahmed's
hands, "go and set it up, that the Prince may judge
whether it may be large enough for the Sultan his father."

The treasurer went immediately with it out of the
palace, and carried it a great way off; and when she had
set it up one end reached to the very palace; at which
time the Prince, thinking it small, found it large enough
to shelter two greater armies than that of the Sultan his
father's, and then said to Paribanou: "I ask my Princess
a thousand pardons for my incredulity; after what I have
seen I believe there is nothing impossible to you." "You
see," said the Fairy, "that the pavilion is larger than what
your father may have occasion for; for you must know
that it has one property--that it is larger or smaller
according to the army it is to cover."

The treasurer took down the tent again, and brought
it to the Prince, who took it, and, without staying any
longer than till the next day, mounted his horse, and went
with the same attendants to the Sultan his father.

The Sultan, who was persuaded that there could not be
any such thing as such a tent as he asked for, was in a
great surprise at the Prince's diligence. He took the tent
and after he had admired its smallness his amazement was
so great that he could not recover himself. When the tent
was set up in the great plain, which we have before
mentioned, he found it large enough to shelter an army twice
as large as he could bring into the field.

But the Sultan was not yet satisfied. "Son," said he,
"I have already expressed to you how much I am obliged
to you for the present of the tent you have procured me;
that I look upon it as the most valuable thing in all my
treasury. But you must do one thing more for me, which
will be every whit as agreeable to me. I am informed that
the Fairy, your spouse, makes use of a certain water,
called the Water of the Fountain of Lions, which cures
all sorts of fevers, even the most dangerous, and, as I am
perfectly well persuaded my health is dear to you, I don't
doubt but you will ask her for a bottle of that water for
me, and bring it me as a sovereign medicine, which I may
make use of when I have occasion. Do me this other
important piece of service, and thereby complete the duty
of a good son toward a tender father."

The Prince returned and told the Fairy what his father
had said; "There's a great deal of wickedness in this
demand?" she answered, "as you will understand by what
I am going to tell you. The Fountain of Lions is situated
in the middle of a court of a great castle, the entrance
into which is guarded by four fierce lions, two of which
sleep alternately, while the other two are awake. But
don't let that frighten you: I'll give you means to pass by
them without any danger."

The Fairy Paribanou was at that time very hard at
work, and, as she had several clews of thread by her, she
took up one, and, presenting it to Prince Ahmed, said:
"First take this clew of thread. I'll tell you presently the
use of it. In the second place, you must have two horses;
one you must ride yourself, and the other you must lead,
which must be loaded with a sheep cut into four quarters,
that must be killed to-day. In the third place, you must
be provided with a bottle, which I will give you, to bring
the water in. Set out early to-morrow morning, and when
you have passed the iron gate throw the clew of thread
before you, which will roll till it comes to the gates of the
castle. Follow it, and when it stops, as the gates will be
open, you will see the four lions: the two that are awake
will, by their roaring, wake the other two, but don't be
frightened, but throw each of them a quarter of mutton,
and then clap spurs to your horse and ride to the fountain;
fill your bottle without alighting, and then return with
the same expedition. The lions will be so busy eating they
will let you pass by them."

Prince Ahmed set out the next morning at the time
appointed by the Fairy, and followed her directions
exactly. When he arrived at the gates of the castle he
distributed the quarters of mutton among the four lions,
and, passing through the midst of them bravely, got to
the fountain, filled his bottle, and returned back as safe and
sound as he went. When he had gone a little distance from
the castle gates he turned him about, and, perceiving two
of the lions coming after him, he drew his sabre and
prepared himself for defense. But as he went forward he
saw one of them turned out of the road at some distance,
and showed by his head and tail that he did not come to
do him any harm, but only to go before him, and that the
other stayed behind to follow, he put his sword up again
in its scabbard. Guarded in this manner, he arrived at the
capital of the Indies, but the lions never left him till they
had conducted him to the gates of the Sultan's palace;
after which they returned the same way they came, though
not without frightening all that saw them, for all they
went in a very gentle manner and showed no fierceness.

A great many officers came to attend the Prince while
he dismounted his horse, and afterward conducted him
into the Sultan's apartment, who was at that time
surrounded with his favorites. He approached toward the
throne, laid the bottle at the Sultan's feet, and kissed the
rich tapestry which covered his footstool, and then said:

"I have brought you, sir, the healthful water which your
Majesty desired so much to keep among your other
rarities in your treasury, but at the same time wish you
such extraordinary health as never to have occasion to
make use of it."

After the Prince had made an end of his compliment
the Sultan placed him on his right hand, and then said to
him: "Son, I am very much obliged to you for this valuable
present, as also for the great danger you have exposed
yourself to upon my account (which I have been informed
of by a magician who knows the Fountain of Lions); but
do me the pleasure," continued he, "to inform me by
what address, or, rather, by what incredible power, you
have been secured."

"Sir," replied Prince Ahmed, "I have no share in the
compliment your Majesty is pleased to make me; all the
honor is due to the Fairy my spouse, whose good advice
I followed." Then he informed the Sultan what those
directions were, and by the relation of this his expedition
let him know how well he had behaved himself. When he
had done the Sultan, who showed outwardly all the
demonstrations of great joy, but secretly became more
jealous, retired into an inward apartment, where he sent
for the magician.

The magician, at her arrival, saved the Sultan the
trouble to tell her of the success of Prince Ahmed's journey,
which she had heard of before she came, and therefore
was prepared with an infallible means, as she
pretended. This means she communicated to the Sultan
who declared it the next day to the Prince, in the midst
of all his courtiers, in these words: "Son," said he, "I have
one thing more to ask of you, after which I shall expect
nothing more from your obedience, nor your interest with
your wife. This request is, to bring me a man not above
a foot and a half high, and whose beard is thirty feet long
who carries a bar of iron upon his shoulders of five
hundredweight, which he uses as a quarterstaff."

Prince Ahmed, who did not believe that there was such
a man in the world as his father described, would gladly
have excused himself; but the Sultan persisted in his
demand, and told him the Fairy could do more incredible

The next day the Prince returned to his dear Paribanou,
to whom he told his father's new demand, which, he said,
he looked upon to be a thing more impossible than the two
first; "for," added he, "I cannot imagine there can be such
a man in the world; without doubt, he has a mind to try
whether or no I am so silly as to go about it, or he has a
design on my ruin. In short, how can he suppose that I
should lay hold of a man so well armed, though he is but
little? What arms can I make use of to reduce him to my
will? If there are any means, I beg you will tell them, and
let me come off with honor this time."

"Don't affright yourself, Prince," replied the Fairy;
"you ran a risk in fetching the Water of the Fountain of
Lions for your father, but there's no danger in finding
out this man, who is my brother Schaibar, but is so far
from being like me, though we both had the same father,
that he is of so violent a nature that nothing can prevent
his giving cruel marks of his resentment for a
slight offense; yet, on the other hand, is so good as to
oblige anyone in whatever they desire. He is made
exactly as the Sultan your father has described him,
and has no other arms than a bar of iron of five hundred
pounds weight, without which he never stirs, and which
makes him respected. I'll send for him, and you shall
judge of the truth of what I tell you; but be sure to
prepare yourself against being frightened at his extraordinary
figure when you see him." "What! my Queen," replied
Prince Ahmed, "do you say Schaibar is your brother?
Let him be never so ugly or deformed I shall be so far
from being frightened at the sight of him that, as our
brother, I shall honor and love him."

The Fairy ordered a gold chafing-dish to be set with
a fire in it under the porch of her palace, with a box of
the same metal, which was a present to her, out of
which taking a perfume, and throwing it into the fire,
there arose a thick cloud of smoke.

Some moments after the Fairy said to Prince Ahmed:
"See, there comes my brother." The Prince immediately
perceived Schaibar coming gravely with his heavy
bar on his shoulder, his long beard, which he held up
before him, and a pair of thick mustachios, which he
tucked behind his ears and almost covered his face; his
eyes were very small and deep-set in his head, which
was far from being of the smallest size, and on his head
he wore a grenadier's cap; besides all this, he was very
much hump-backed.

If Prince Ahmed had not known that Schaibar was
Paribanou's brother, he would not have been able to
have looked at him without fear, but, knowing first
who he was, he stood by the Fairy without the least

Schaibar, as he came forward, looked at the Prince
earnestly enough to have chilled his blood in his veins,
and asked Paribanou, when he first accosted her, who
that man was. To which she replied: "He is my husband,
brother. His name is Ahmed; he is son to the
Sultan of the Indies. The reason why I did not invite
you to my wedding was I was unwilling to divert you
from an expedition you were engaged in, and from
which I heard with pleasure you returned victorious,
and so took the liberty now to call for you."

At these words, Schaibar, looking on Prince Ahmed
favorably, said: "Is there anything else, sister, wherein
I can serve him? It is enough for me that he is your
husband to engage me to do for him whatever he desires."
"The Sultan, his father," replied Paribanou, "has a
curiosity to see you, and I desire he may be your guide to
the Sultan's Court." "He needs but lead me the way
I'll follow him." "Brother," replied Paribanou, "it is
too late to go to-day, therefore stay till to-morrow morning;
and in the meantime I'll inform you of all that has
passed between the Sultan of the Indies and Prince
Ahmed since our marriage."

The next morning, after Schaibar had been informed
of the affair, he and Prince Ahmed set out for the Sultan's
Court. When they arrived at the gates of the capital
the people no sooner saw Schaibar but they ran and hid
themselves; and some shut up their shops and locked
themselves up in their houses, while others, flying,
communicated their fear to all they met, who stayed not
to look behind them, but ran too; insomuch that Schaibar
and Prince Ahmed, as they went along, found the
streets all desolate till they came to the palaces where
the porters, instead of keeping the gates, ran away too,
so that the Prince and Schaibar advanced without any
obstacle to the council-hall, where the Sultan was seated
on his throne, and giving audience. Here likewise
the ushers, at the approach of Schaibar, abandoned their
posts, and gave them free admittance.

Schaibar went boldly and fiercely up to the throne,
without waiting to be presented by Prince Ahmed, and
accosted the Sultan of the Indies in these words: "Thou
hast asked for me," said he; "see, here I am; what wouldst
thou have with me?"

The Sultan, instead of answering him, clapped his
hands before his eyes to avoid the sight of so terrible an
object; at which uncivil and rude reception Schaibar
was so much provoked, after he had given him the
trouble to come so far, that he instantly lifted up his
iron bar and killed him before Prince Ahmed could
intercede in his behalf. All that he could do was to
prevent his killing the grand vizier, who sat not far from
him, representing to him that he had always given the
Sultan his father good advice. "These are they, then,"
said Schaibar, "who gave him bad," and as he
pronounced these words he killed all the other viziers and
flattering favorites of the Sultan who were Prince
Ahmed's enemies. Every time he struck he killed some
one or other, and none escaped but they who were not
so frightened as to stand staring and gaping, and who
saved themselves by flight.

When this terrible execution was over Schaibar came
out of the council-hall into the midst of the courtyard
with the iron bar upon his shoulder, and, looking hard
at the grand vizier, who owed his life to Prince Ahmed,
he said: "I know here is a certain magician, who is a
greater enemy of my brother-in-law than all these base
favorites I have chastised. Let the magician be brought
to me presently." The grand vizier immediately sent
for her, and as soon as she was brought Schaibar said,
at the time he fetched a stroke at her with his iron bar:
"Take the reward of thy pernicious counsel, and learn
to feign sickness again."

After this he said: "This is not yet enough; I will use
the whole town after the same manner if they do not
immediately acknowledge Prince Ahmed, my brother-in-law,
for their Sultan and the Sultan of the Indies." Then
all that were there present made the air echo again with the
repeated acclamations of: "Long life to Sultan Ahmed";
and immediately after he was proclaimed through the
whole town. Schaibar made him be clothed in the royal
vestments, installed him on the throne, and after he had
caused all to swear homage and fidelity to him went
and fetched his sister Paribanou, whom he brought with
all the pomp and grandeur imaginable, and made her
to be owned Sultaness of the Indies.

As for Prince Ali and Princess Nouronnihar, as they
had no hand in the conspiracy against Prince Ahmed
and knew nothing of any, Prince Ahmed assigned them
a considerable province, with its capital, where they spent
the rest of their lives. Afterwards he sent an officer to
Prince Houssain to acquaint him with the change and
make him an offer of which province he liked best; but
that Prince thought himself so happy in his solitude
that he bade the officer return the Sultan his brother
thanks for the kindness he designed him, assuring him
of his submission; and that the only favor he desired of
him was to give him leave to live retired in the place he
had made choice of for his retreat.[1]

[1] Arabian Nights.


In the reign of the famous King Arthur there lived
in Cornwall a lad named Jack, who was a boy of a bold
temper, and took delight in hearing or reading of conjurers,
giants, and fairies; and used to listen eagerly to
the deeds of the knights of King Arthur's Round Table.

In those days there lived on St. Michael's Mount, off
Cornwall, a huge giant, eighteen feet high and nine feet
round; his fierce and savage looks were the terror of all
who beheld him.

He dwelt in a gloomy cavern on the top of the
mountain, and used to wade over to the mainland in search
of prey; when he would throw half a dozen oxen upon
his back, and tie three times as many sheep and hogs
round his waist, and march back to his own abode.

The giant had done this for many years when Jack
resolved to destroy him.

Jack took a horn, a shovel, a pickaxe, his armor, and
a dark lantern, and one winter's evening he went to the
mount. There he dug a pit twenty-two feet deep and
twenty broad. He covered the top over so as to make
it look like solid ground. He then blew his horn so
loudly that the giant awoke and came out of his den
crying out: "You saucy villain! you shall pay for this
I'll broil you for my breakfast!"

He had just finished, when, taking one step further,
he tumbled headlong into the pit, and Jack struck him
a blow on the head with his pickaxe which killed him.
Jack then returned home to cheer his friends with the

Another giant, called Blunderbore, vowed to be
revenged on Jack if ever he should have him in his power.
This giant kept an enchanted castle in the midst of a
lonely wood; and some time after the death of Cormoran
Jack was passing through a wood, and being
weary, sat down and went to sleep.

The giant, passing by and seeing Jack, carried him
to his castle, where he locked him up in a large room,
the floor of which was covered with the bodies, skulls
and bones of men and women.

Soon after the giant went to fetch his brother who
was likewise a giant, to take a meal off his flesh; and Jack
saw with terror through the bars of his prison the two
giants approaching.

Jack, perceiving in one corner of the room a strong
cord, took courage, and making a slip-knot at each end,
he threw them over their heads, and tied it to the window-bars;
he then pulled till he had choked them. When they
were black in the face he slid down the rope and stabbed
them to the heart.

Jack next took a great bunch of keys from the pocket
of Blunderbore, and went into the castle again. He
made a strict search through all the rooms, and in one
of them found three ladies tied up by the hair of their
heads, and almost starved to death. They told him
that their husbands had been killed by the giants, who
had then condemned them to be starved to death
because they would not eat the flesh of their own dead

"Ladies," said Jack, "I have put an end to the
monster and his wicked brother; and I give you this castle
and all the riches it contains, to make some amends for
the dreadful pains you have felt." He then very politely
gave them the keys of the castle, and went further on
his journey to Wales.

As Jack had but little money, he went on as fast as
possible. At length he came to a handsome house.
Jack knocked at the door, when there came forth a
Welsh giant. Jack said he was a traveler who had lost
his way, on which the giant made him welcome, and let
him into a room where there was a good bed to sleep in.

Jack took off his clothes quickly, but though he was
weary he could not go to sleep. Soon after this he heard
the giant walking backward and forward in the next
room, and saying to himself:

  "Though here you lodge with me this night,
  You shall not see the morning light;
  My club shall dash your brains out quite."

"Say you so?" thought Jack. "Are these your tricks
upon travelers? But I hope to prove as cunning as you
are." Then, getting out of bed, he groped about the
room, and at last found a large thick billet of wood. He
laid it in his own place in the bed, and then hid himself
in a dark corner of the room.

The giant, about midnight, entered the apartment,
and with his bludgeon struck many blows on the bed,
in the very place where Jack had laid the log; and then
he went back to his own room, thinking he had broken
all Jack's bones.

Early in the morning Jack put a bold face upon the
matter, and walked into the giant's room to thank him
for his lodging. The giant started when he saw him,
and began to stammer out: "Oh! dear me; is it you?
Pray how did you sleep last night? Did you hear or see
anything in the dead of the night?"

"Nothing to speak of," said Jack, carelessly; "a rat, I
believe, gave me three or four slaps with its tail, and
disturbed me a little; but I soon went to sleep again."

The giant wondered more and more at this; yet he
did not answer a word, but went to bring two great
bowls of hasty-pudding for their breakfast. Jack wanted
to make the giant believe that he could eat as much as
himself, so he contrived to button a leathern bag inside
his coat, and slip the hasty-pudding into this bag, while
he seemed to put it into his mouth.

When breakfast was over he said to the giant: "Now
I will show you a fine trick. I can cure all wounds with
a touch; I could cut off my head in one minute, and the
next put it sound again on my shoulders. You shall
see an example." He then took hold of the knife,
ripped up the leathern bag, and all the hasty-pudding
tumbled out upon the floor.

"Ods splutter hur nails!" cried the Welsh giant, who
was ashamed to be outdone by such a little fellow as
Jack, "hur can do that hurself"; so he snatched up the
knife, plunged it into his own stomach, and in a moment
dropped down dead.

Jack, having hitherto been successful in all his undertakings,
resolved not to be idle in future; he therefore
furnished himself with a horse, a cap of knowledge, a
sword of sharpness, shoes of swiftness, and an invisible
coat, the better to perform the wonderful enterprises
that lay before him.

He traveled over high hills, and on the third day he
came to a large and spacious forest through which his
road lay. Scarcely had he entered the forest when he
beheld a monstrous giant dragging along by the hair
of their heads a handsome knight and his lady. Jack
alighted from his horse, and tying him to an oak tree,
put on his invisible coat, under which he carried his
sword of sharpness.

When he came up to the giant he made several strokes
at him, but could not reach his body, but wounded his
thighs in several places; and at length, putting both
hands to his sword and aiming with all his might, he
cut off both his legs. Then Jack, setting his foot upon
his neck, plunged his sword into the giant's body, when
the monster gave a groan and expired.

The knight and his lady thanked Jack for their
deliverance, and invited him to their house, to receive a
proper reward for his services. "No," said Jack, "I
cannot be easy till I find out this monster's habitation."
So, taking the knight's directions, he mounted his horse
and soon after came in sight of another giant, who was
sitting on a block of timber waiting for his brother's

Jack alighted from his horse, and, putting on his
invisible coat, approached and aimed a blow at the giant's
head, but, missing his aim, he only cut off his nose. On
this the giant seized his club and laid about him most

"Nay," said Jack, "if this be the case I'd better
dispatch you!" so, jumping upon the block, he stabbed him
in the back, when he dropped down dead.

Jack then proceeded on his journey, and traveled over
hills and dales, till arriving at the foot of a high mountain
he knocked at the door of a lonely house, when an
old man let him in.

When Jack was seated the hermit thus addressed
him: "My son, on the top of this mountain is an
enchanted castle, kept by the giant Galligantus and a vile
magician. I lament the fate of a duke's daughter, whom
they seized as she was walking in her father's garden,
and brought hither transformed into a deer."

Jack promised that in the morning, at the risk of his
life, he would break the enchantment; and after a sound
sleep he rose early, put on his invisible coat, and got
ready for the attempt.

When he had climbed to the top of the mountain he
saw two fiery griffins, but he passed between them
without the least fear of danger, for they could not see
him because of his invisible coat. On the castle gate
he found a golden trumpet, under which were written
these lines:

  "Whoever can this trumpet blow
  Shall cause the giant's overthrow."

As soon as Jack had read this he seized the trumpet
and blew a shrill blast, which made the gates fly open
and the very castle itself tremble.

The giant and the conjurer now knew that their
wicked course was at an end, and they stood biting
their thumbs and shaking with fear. Jack, with his
sword of sharpness, soon killed the giant, and the
magician was then carried away by a whirlwind; and every
knight and beautiful lady who had been changed into
birds and beasts returned to their proper shapes. The
castle vanished away like smoke, and the head of the
giant Galligantus was then sent to King Arthur.

The knights and ladies rested that night at the old
man's hermitage, and next day they set out for the
Court. Jack then went up to the King, and gave his
Majesty an account of all his fierce battles.

Jack's fame had now spread through the whole
country, and at the King's desire the duke gave him his
daughter in marriage, to the joy of all his kingdom.
After this the King gave him a large estate, on which he
and his lady lived the rest of their days in joy and

[1] Old Chapbook.


And many a hunting song they sung,
  And song of game and glee;
Then tuned to plaintive strains their tongue,
  "Of Scotland's luve and lee."
To wilder measures next they turn
  "The Black, Black Bull of Norroway!"
Sudden the tapers cease to burn,
  The minstrels cease to play.
       "The Cout of Keeldar," by J. Leyden.

In Norroway, langsyne, there lived a certain lady,
and she had three dochters. The auldest o' them said to
her mither: "Mither, bake me a bannock, and roast me
a collop, for I'm gaun awa' to seek my fortune." Her
mither did sae; and the dochter gaed awa' to an auld
witch washerwife and telled her purpose. The auld
wife bade her stay that day, and gang and look out o'
her back door, and see what she could see. She saw
nocht the first day. The second day she did the same,
and saw nocht. On the third day she looked again, and
saw a coach-and-six coming along the road. She ran
in and telled the auld wife what she saw. "Aweel," quo'
the auld wife, "yon's for you." Sae they took her into
the coach, and galloped aff.

The second dochter next says to her mither: "Mither,
bake me a bannock, and roast me a collop, fur I'm gaun
awa' to seek my fortune." Her mither did sae; and awa'
she gaed to the auld wife, as her sister had dune. On the
third day she looked out o' the back door, and saw a
coach-and-four coming along the road. "Aweel," quo'
the auld wife, "yon's for you." Sae they took her in,
and aff they set.

The third dochter says to her mither: "Mither, bake
me a bannock, and roast me a collop, for I'm gaun awa'
to seek my fortune." Her mither did sae; and awa' she
gaed to the auld witch-wife. She bade her look out o'
her back door, and see what she could see. She did
sae; and when she came back said she saw nocht. The
second day she did the same, and saw nocht. The
third day she looked again, and on coming back said
to the auld wife she saw nocht but a muckle Black Bull
coming roaring alang the road. "Aweel," quo' the auld
wife, "yon's for you." On hearing this she was next to
distracted wi' grief and terror; but she was lifted up and
set on his back, and awa' they went.

Aye they traveled, and on they traveled, till the lady
grew faint wi' hunger. "Eat out o' my right lug," says
the Black Bull, "and drink out o' my left lug, and set
by your leavings." Sae she did as he said, and was
wonderfully refreshed. And lang they gaed, and sair
they rade, till they came in sight o' a very big and
bonny castle. "Yonder we maun be this night," quo'
the bull; "for my auld brither lives yonder"; and
presently they were at the place. They lifted her aff his
back, and took her in, and sent him away to a park for
the night. In the morning, when they brought the
bull hame, they took the lady into a fine shining parlor,
and gave her a beautiful apple, telling her no to break
it till she was in the greatest strait ever mortal was in
in the world, and that wad bring her o't. Again she
was lifted on the bull's back, and after she had ridden
far, and farer than I can tell, they came in sight o' a
far bonnier castle, and far farther awa' than the last.
Says the bull till her: "Yonder we maun be the night,
for my second brither lives yonder"; and they were at
the place directly. They lifted her down and took her
in, and sent the bull to the field for the night. In the
morning they took the lady into a fine and rich room,
and gave her the finest pear she had ever seen, bidding
her no to break it till she was in the greatest strait ever
mortal could be in, and that wad get her out o't. Again
she was lifted and set on his back, and awa' they went.
And lang they gaed, and sair they rade, till they came
in sight o' the far biggest castle, and far farthest aff,
they had yet seen. "We maun be yonder the night,"
says the bull, "for my young brither lives yonder"; and
they were there directly. They lifted her down, took
her in, and sent the bull to the field for the night. In
the morning they took her into a room, the finest of a',
and gied her a plum, telling her no to break it till she
was in the greatest strait mortal could be in, and that
wad get her out o't. Presently they brought hame the
bull, set the lady on his back, and awa' they went.

And aye they gaed, and on they rade, till they came
to a dark and ugsome glen, where they stopped, and the
lady lighted down. Says the bull to her: "Here ye
maun stay till I gang and fight the deil. Ye maun seat
yoursel' on that stane, and move neither hand nor fit
till I come back, else I'll never find ye again. And if
everything round about ye turns blue I hae beated the
deil; but should a' things turn red he'll hae conquered
me." She set hersel' down on the stane, and by-and-by
a' round her turned blue. O'ercome wi' joy, she lifted
the ae fit and crossed it owre the ither, sae glad was she
that her companion was victorious. The bull returned
and sought for but never could find her.

Lang she sat, and aye she grat, till she wearied. At
last she rase and gaed awa', she kedna whaur till. On
she wandered till she came to a great hill o' glass, that
she tried a' she could to climb, bat wasna able. Round
the bottom o' the hill she gaed, sabbing and seeking a
passage owre, till at last she came to a smith's house;
and the smith promised, if she wad serve him seven
years, he wad make her iron shoon, wherewi' she could
climb owre the glassy hill. At seven years' end she got
her iron shoon, clamb the glassy hill, and chanced to
come to the auld washerwife's habitation. There she
was telled of a gallant young knight that had given in
some bluidy sarks to wash, and whaever washed thae
sarks was to be his wife. The auld wife had washed
till she was tired, and then she set to her dochter, and
baith washed, and they washed, and they better washed,
in hopes of getting the young knight; but a' they could
do they couldna bring out a stain. At length they set
the stranger damosel to wark; and whenever she began
the stains came out pure and clean, but the auld wife
made the knight believe it was her dochter had washed
the sarks. So the knight and the eldest dochter were
to be married, and the stranger damosel was distracted
at the thought of it, for she was deeply in love wi' him.
So she bethought her of her apple, and breaking it,
found it filled with gold and precious jewelry, the richest
she had ever seen. "All these," she said to the eldest
dochter, "I will give you, on condition that you put
off your marriage for ae day, and allow me to go into
his room alone at night." So the lady consented; but
meanwhile the auld wife had prepared a sleeping-drink,
and given it to the knight, wha drank it, and never
wakened till next morning. The lee-lang night ther
damosel sabbed and sang:

  "Seven lang years I served for thee,
  The glassy hill I clamb for thee,
  The bluidy shirt I wrang for thee;
  And wilt thou no wauken and turn to me?"

Next day she kentna what to do for grief. She then
brak the pear, and found it filled wi' jewelry far richer
than the contents o' the apple. Wi' thae jewels she
bargained for permission to be a second night in the
young knight's chamber; but the auld wife gied him
anither sleeping-drink, and he again sleepit till morning.
A' night she kept sighing and singing as before:

"Seven lang years I served for thee," &c.
Still he sleepit, and she nearly lost hope a'thegither.
But that day when he was out at the hunting, somebody
asked him what noise and moaning was yon they heard
all last night in his bedchamber. He said he heardna
ony noise. But they assured him there was sae; and he
resolved to keep waking that night to try what he could
hear. That being the third night, and the damosel
being between hope and despair, she brak her plum, and
it held far the richest jewelry of the three. She
bargained as before; and the auld wife, as before, took in
the sleeping-drink to the young knight's chamber; but he
telled her he couldna drink it that night without
sweetening. And when she gaed awa' for some honey to
sweeten it wi', he poured out the drink, and sae made the
auld wife think he had drunk it. They a' went to bed
again, and the damosel began, as before, singing:

  "Seven lang years I served for thee,
  The glassy hill I clamb for thee,
  The bluidy shirt I wrang for thee;
  And wilt thou no wauken and turn to me?"

He heard, and turned to her. And she telled him a' that
had befa'en her, and he telled her a' that had happened
to him. And he caused the auld washerwife and her
dochter to be burned. And they were married, and he
and she are living happy till this day, for aught I ken.[1]

[1] Chambers, Popular Traditions of Scotland.


There were ance twa widows that lived on a small bit
o' ground, which they rented from a farmer. Ane of
them had twa sons, and the other had ane; and by-and-by
it was time for the wife that had twa sons to send
them away to seeke their fortune. So she told her eldest
son ae day to take a can and bring her water from
the well, that she might bake a cake for him; and however
much or however little water he might bring, the
cake would be great or sma' accordingly; and that cake
was to be a' that she could gie him when he went on his

The lad gaed away wi' the can to the well, and filled
it wi' water, and then came away hame again; but the
can being broken the maist part of the water had run
out before he got back. So his cake was very sma';
yet sma' as it was, his mother asked if he was willing to
take the half of it with her blessing, telling him that, if
he chose rather to have the hale, he would only get it
wi' her curse. The young man, thinking he might hae
to travel a far way, and not knowing when or how he
might get other provisions, said he would like to hae
the hale cake, com of his mother's malison what like;
so she gave him the hale cake, and her malison alang
wi't. Then he took his brither aside, and gave him a
knife to keep till he should come back, desiring him to
look at it every morning, and as lang as it continued to
be clear, then he might be sure that the owner of it was
well; but if it grew dim and rusty, then for certain some
ill had befallen him.

So the young man set out to seek his fortune. And
he gaed a' that day, and a' the next day; and on the
third day, in the afternoon, he came up to where a
shepherd was sitting with a flock o' sheep. And he
gaed up to the shepherd and asked him wha the sheep
belanged to; and the man answered:

"The Red Etin of Ireland
  Ance lived in Bellygan,
And stole King Malcolm's daughter,
  The King of fair Scotland.
He beats her, he binds her,
  He lays her on a band;
And every day he dings her
  With a bright silver wand
Like Julian the Roman
He's one that fears no man.
It's said there's ane predestinate
  To be his mortal foe;
But that man is yet unborn
  And lang may it be so."

The young man then went on his journey; and he had
not gone far when he espied an old man with white
locks herding a flock of swine; and he gaed up to him
and asked whose swine these were, when the man

"The Red Etin of Ireland"--
       (Repeat the verses above.)

Then the young man gaed on a bit farther, and came
to another very old man herding goats; and when he
asked whose goats they were, the answer was:

"The Red Etin of Ireland"--
       (Repeat the verses again.)

This old man also told him to beware of the next beasts
that he should meet, for they were of a very different
kind from any he had yet seen.

So the young man went on, and by-and-by he saw a
multitude of very dreadfu' beasts, ilk ane o' them wi'
twa heads, and on every head four horns. And he was
sore frightened, and ran away from them as fast as he
could; and glad was he when he came to a castle that
stood on a hillock, wi' the door standing wide to the
wa'. And he gaed into the castle for shelter, and there
he saw an auld wife sitting beside the kitchen fire. He
asked the wife if he might stay there for the night, as
he was tired wi' a lang journey; and the wife said he
might, but it was not a good place for him to be in,
as it belanged to the Red Etin, who was a very terrible
beast, wi' three heads, that spared no living man he
could get hold of. The young man would have gone
away, but he was afraid of the beasts on the outside of
the castle; so he beseeched the old woman to conceal
him as well as she could, and not to tell the Etin that
he was there. He thought, if he could put over the
night, he might get away in the morning without meeting
wi' the beasts, and so escape. But he had not been
long in his hidy-hole before the awful Etin came in;
and nae sooner was he in than he was heard crying:

  "Snouk but and snouk ben,
  I find the smell of an earthly man;
  Be he living, or be he dead,
  His heart this night shall kitchen[1] my bread."

[1] "Kitchen," that is, "season."

The monster soon found the poor young man, and
pulled him from his hole. And when he had got him
out he told him that if he could answer him three
questions his life should be spared. The first was: Whether
Ireland or Scotland was first inhabited? The second
was: Whether man was made for woman, or woman for
man? The third was: Whether men or brutes were
made first? The lad not being able to answer one of
these questions, the Red Etin took a mace and knocked
him on the head, and turned him into a pillar of stone.

On the morning after this happened the younger
brither took out the knife to look at it, and he was grieved
to find it a' brown wi' rust. He told his mother that
the time was now come for him to go away upon his
travels also; so she requested him to take the can to the
well for water, that she might bake a cake for him. The
can being broken, he brought hame as little water as
the other had done, and the cake was as little. She
asked whether he would have the hale cake wi' her malison,
or the half wi' her blessing; and, like his brither, he
thought it best to have the hale cake, come o' the malison
what might. So he gaed away; and everything
happened to him that had happened to his brother!

The other widow and her son heard of a' that had
happened frae a fairy, and the young man determined that
he would also go upon his travels, and see if he could
do anything to relieve his twa friends. So his mother
gave him a can to go to the well and bring home water,
that she might bake him a cake for his journey. And he
gaed, and as he was bringing hame the water, a raven
owre abune his head cried to him to look, and he would
see that the water was running out. And he was a
young man of sense, and seeing the water running out,
he took some clay and patched up the holes, so that he
brought home enough water to bake a large cake. When
his mother put it to him to take the half-cake wi' her
blessing, he took it in preference to having the hale wi'
her malison; and yet the half was bigger than what the
other lads had got a'thegither.

So he gaed away on his journey; and after he had
traveled a far way he met wi' an auld woman, that asked
him if he would give her a bit of his bannock. And he
said he would gladly do that, and so he gave her a piece
of the bannock; and for that she gied him a magical
wand, that she said might yet be of service to him if
he took care to use it rightly. Then the auld woman,
who was a fairy, told him a great deal that whould
happen to him, and what he ought to do in a' circumstances;
and after that she vanished in an instant out o'
his sight. He gaed on a great way farther, and then
he came up to the old man herding the sheep; and when
he asked whose sheep these were, the answer was:

"The Red Etin of Ireland
  Ance lived in Bellygan,
And stole King Malcolm's daughter,
  The King of fair Scotland.
He beats her, he binds her,
  He lays her on a band;
And every day he dings her
  With a bright silver wand.
Like Julian the Roman,
He's one that fears no man,
But now I fear his end is near,
  And destiny at hand;
And you're to be, I plainly see,
  The heir of all his land."

 (Repeat the same inquiries to the man attending the swine and
the man attending the goats, with the same answer in each case.)

When he came to the place where the monstrous
beasts were standing, he did not stop nor run away,
but went boldly through among them. One came up
roaring with open mouth to devour him, when he struck
it with his wand, and laid it in an instant dead at his
feet. He soon came to the Etin's castle, where he
knocked, and was admitted. The auld woman that sat
by the fire warned him of the terrible Etin, and what
had been the fate of the twa brithers; but he was not to
be daunted. The monster soon came in, saying:

  "Snouk but and snouk ben,
  I find the smell of an earthly man;
  Be he living, or be he dead,
  His heart shall be kitchen to my bread."

He quickly espied the young man, and bade him come
forth on the floor. And then he put the three questions
to him, but the young man had been told everything by
the good fairy, so he was able to answer all the
questions. When the Etin found this he knew that his
power was gone. The young man then took up the
axe and hewed off the monster's three heads. He next
asked the old woman to show him where the King's
daughters lay; and the old woman took him upstairs
and opened a great many doors, and out of every door
came a beautiful lady who had been imprisoned there
by the Etin; and ane o' the ladies was the King's
daughter. She also took him down into a low room, and there
stood two stone pillars that he had only to touch wi' his
wand, when his two friends and neighbors started into
life. And the hale o' the prisoners were overjoyed at
their deliverance, which they all acknowledged to be
owing to the prudent young man. Next day they a'
set out for the King's Court, and a gallant company
they made. And the King married his daughter to the
young man that had delivered her, and gave a noble's
daughter to ilk ane o' the other young men; and so they
a' lived happily a' the rest o' their days.[1]

[1] Chambers, Popular Traditions of Scotland.

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