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Title: Household Tales by Brothers Grimm
Author: Grimm, Wilhelm, Grimm, Jacob
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
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.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Household Tales by Brothers Grimm" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.



Nicholson, Erin Shea, David Baird, and David Skinner, all
undergraduates at Memorial University of Newfoundland, under the
direction of William Barker, and a compiled text was then prepared for


Household Tales by brothers Grimm, translated by Margaret Hunt

These fairy tales by brothers Grimm are based on the original
1884 translation "Household Tales" of Margaret Hunt.

This text is based on the book
"Grimm's household tales with the author's notes."
By Grimm Jakob Ludwig Karl.
Translated by Margaret Hunt.


This text includes ALL Grimm's fairy tales and 10
children's legends. The Margaret Hunt's translation is
very true to the German original.

CONTENTS

  1 The Frog King, or Iron Henry (Der Froschkönig oder der eiserne Heinrich)
  2 Cat and Mouse in Partnership (Katze und Maus in Gesellschaft)
  3 Our Lady's Child (Marienkind)
  4 The Story of the Youth Who Went Forth to Learn What Fear Was (Märchen
    von einem, der auszog, das Fürchten zu lernen)
  5 The Wolf and the Seven Young Kids (Der Wolf und die sieben jungen
    Geißlein)
  6 Faithful John (Der treue Johannes)
  7 The Good Bargain (Der gute Handel)
  8 The Strange Musician (Der wunderliche Spielmann)
  9 The Twelve Brothers (Die zwölf Brüder)
 10 The Pack of Ragamuffins (Das Lumpengesindel)
 11 Little Brother and Little Sister (Brüderchen und Schwesterchen)
 12 Rapunzel (Rapunzel)
 13 The Three Little Men in the Forest (Die drei Männlein im Walde)
 14 The Three Spinning Women (Die drei Spinnerinnen)
 15 Hansel and Gretel (Hänsel und Gretel)
 16 The Three Snake-Leaves (Die drei Schlangenblätter)
 17 The White Snake (Die weiße Schlange)
 18 Straw, Coal, and Bean (Strohhalm, Kohle und Bohne)
 19 The Fisherman and His Wife (Von dem Fischer un syner Fru)
 20 The Brave Little Tailor (Das tapfere Schneiderlein)
 21 Cinderella (Aschenputtel)
 22 The Riddle (Das Rätsel)
 23 The Mouse, the Bird, and the Sausage (Von dem Mäuschen, Vögelchen
    und der Bratwurst)
 24 Frau Holle (Frau Holle)
 25 The Seven Ravens (Die sieben Raben)
 26 Little Red-Cap (Rotkäppchen)
 27 The Bremen Town Musicians (Die Bremer Stadtmusikanten)
 28 The Singing Bone (Der singende Knochen)
 29 The Devil with the Three Golden Hairs (Der Teufel mit den drei goldenen
    Haaren)
 30 Little Louse and Little Flea (Läuschen und Flöhchen)
 31 The Girl without Hands (Das Mädchen ohne Hände)
 32 Clever Hans (Der gescheite Hans)
 33 The Three Languages (Die drei Sprachen)
 34 Clever Elsie (Die kluge Else)
 35 The Tailor in Heaven (Der Schneider im Himmel)
 36 The Wishing-table, the Gold-ass, and the Cudgel in the Sack
    (Tischchendeckdich, Goldesel und Knüppel aus dem Sack)
 37 Thumbling (Daumesdick)
 38 The Wedding of Mrs. Fox (Die Hochzeit der Frau Füchsin)
 39 The Elves (Die Wichtelmänner)
 40 The Robber Bridegroom (Der Räuberbräutigam)
 41 Herr Korbes (Herr Korbes)
 42 The Godfather (Der Herr Gevatter)
 43 Frau Trude (Frau Trude)
 44 Godfather Death (Der Gevatter Tod)
 45 Thumbling as Journeyman [Thumbling's Travels] (Daumerlings
    Wanderschaft)
 46 Fitcher's Bird [Fowler's Fowl] (Fitchers Vogel)
 47 The Juniper-Tree (Von dem Machandelboom)
 48 Old Sultan (Der alte Sultan)
 49 The Six Swans (Die sechs Schwäne)
 50 Little Briar-Rose (Dornröschen)
 51 Foundling-Bird (Fundevogel)
 52 King Thrushbeard (König Drosselbart)
 53 Little Snow-White (Sneewittchen)
 54 The Knapsack, the Hat, and the Horn (Der Ranzen, das Hütlein und das
    Hörnlein)
 55 Rumpelstiltskin (Rumpelstilzchen)
 56 Sweetheart Roland (Der Liebste Roland)
 57 The Golden Bird (Der goldene Vogel)
 58 The Dog and the Sparrow (Der Hund und der Sperling)
 59 Frederick and Catherine (Der Frieder und das Catherlieschen)
 60 The Two Brothers (Die zwei Brüder)
 61 The Little Peasant (Das Bürle)
 62 The Queen Bee (Die Bienenkönigin)
 63 The Three Feathers (Die drei Federn)
 64 The Golden Goose (Die goldene Gans)
 65 Allerleirauh [All-Kinds-Of-Fur] (Allerleirauh)
 66 The Hare's Bride (Häsichenbraut)
 67 The Twelve Huntsmen (Die zwölf Jäger)
 68 The Thief and His Master (De Gaudeif un sien Meester)
 69 Jorinde and Joringel (Jorinde und Joringel)
 70 The Three Children of Fortune (Die drei Glückskinder)
 71 How Six Men Got On in the World (Sechse kommen durch die ganze Welt)
 72 The Wolf and the Man (Der Wolf und der Mensch)
 73 The Wolf and the Fox (Der Wolf und der Fuchs)
 74 The Fox and His Cousin (Der Fuchs und die Frau Gevatterin)
 75 The Fox and the Cat (Der Fuchs und die Katze)
 76 The Pink (Die Nelke)
 77 Clever Grethel (Das kluge Gretel)
 78 The Old Man and His Grandson (Der alte Großvater und der Enkel)
 79 The Water-Nix (Die Wassernixe)
 80 The Death of the Little Hen (Von dem Tode des Hühnchens)
 81 Brother Lustig (Bruder Lustig)
 82 Gambling Hansel (De Spielhansl)
 83 Hans in Luck (Hans im Glück)
 84 Hans Married (Hans heiratet)
 85 The Gold-Children (Die Goldkinder)
 86 The Fox and the Geese (Der Fuchs und die Gänse)
 87 The Poor Man and the Rich Man (Der Arme und der Reiche)
 88 The Singing, Springing Lark (Das singende springende Löweneckerchen)
 89 The Goose-Girl (Die Gänsemagd)
 90 The Young Giant (Der junge Riese)
 91 The Gnome (Dat Erdmänneken)
 92 The King of the Golden Mountain (Der König vom goldenen Berg)
 93 The Raven (Die Rabe)
 94 The Peasant's Clever Daughter (Die kluge Bauerntochter)
 95 Old Hildebrand (Der alte Hildebrand)
 96 The Three Little Birds (De drei Vügelkens)
 97 The Water of Life (Das Wasser des Lebens)
 98 Dr. Know-All (Doktor Allwissend)
 99 The Spirit in the Bottle (Der Geist im Glas)
100 The Devil's Sooty Brother (Des Teufels rußiger Bruder)
101 Bearskin (Der Bärenhäuter)
102 The Willow-Wren and the Bear (Der Zaunkönig und der Bär)
103 Sweet Porridge (Der süße Brei)
104 Wise Folks (Die klugen Leute)
105 Stories about Snakes (Märchen von der Unke)
106 The Poor Miller's Boy and the Cat (Der arme Müllerbursch und das
    Kätzchen)
107 The Two Travellers (Die beiden Wanderer)
108 Hans the Hedgehog (Hans mein Igel)
109 The Shroud (Das Totenhemdchen)
110 The Jew among Thorns (Der Jude im Dorn)
111 The Skilful Huntsman (Der gelernte Jäger)
112 The Flail from Heaven (Der Dreschflegel vom Himmel)
113 The Two Kings' Children (De beiden Künigeskinner)
114 The Cunning Little Tailor (Vom klugen Schneiderlein)
115 The Bright Sun Brings It to Light (Die klare Sonne bringt's an den Tag)
116 The Blue Light (Das blaue Licht)
117 The Wilful Child (Das eigensinnige Kind)
118 The Three Army Surgeons (Die drei Feldscherer)
119 The Seven Swabians (Die sieben Schwaben)
120 The Three Apprentices (Die drei Handwerksburschen)
121 The King's Son Who Feared Nothing (Der Königssohn, der sich vor nichts
    fürchtet)
122 Donkey Cabbages (Der Krautesel)
123 The Old Woman in the Wood (Die Alte im Wald)
124 The Three Brothers (Die drei Brüder)
125 The Devil and His Grandmother (Der Teufel und seine Großmutter)
126 Ferdinand the Faithful (Ferenand getrü un Ferenand ungetrü)
127 The Iron Stove (Der Eisenofen)
128 The Lazy Spinner (Die faule Spinnerin)
129 The Four Skilful Brothers (Die vier kunstreichen Brüder)
130 One-Eye, Two-Eyes, and Three-Eyes (Einäuglein, Zweiäuglein und
    Dreiäuglein)
131 Fair Katrinelje and Pif Paf Poltrie (Die schöne Katrinelje und Pif Paf
    Poltrie)
132 The Fox and the Horse (Der Fuchs und das Pferd)
133 The Shoes that Were Danced to Pieces (Die zertanzten Schuhe)
134 The Six Servants (Die sechs Diener)
135 The White Bride and the Black One (Die weiße und die schwarze Braut)
136 Iron John (Der Eisenhans)
137 The Three Black Princesses (De drei schwatten Prinzessinnen)
138 Knoist and His Three Sons (Knoist un sine dre Sühne)
139 The Maid of Brakel (Dat Mäken von Brakel)
140 Domestic Servants (Das Hausgesinde)
141 The Lambkin and the Little Fish (Das Lämmchen und Fischchen)
142 Simeli Mountain (Simeliberg)
143 Going A-Travelling (Up Reisen gohn)
144 The Donkey (Das Eselein)
145 The Ungrateful Son (Der undankbare Sohn)
146 The Turnip (Die Rübe)
147 The Old Man Made Young Again (Das junggeglühte Männlein)
148 The Lord's Animals and the Devil's (Des Herrn und des Teufels Getier)
149 The Beam (Der Hahnenbalken)
150 The Old Beggar-Woman (Die alte Bettelfrau)
151 The Three Sluggards (Die drei Faulen)
151* The Twelve Idle Servants (Die zwölf faulen Knechte)
152 The Shepherd Boy (Das Hirtenbüblein)
153 The Star-Money (Die Sterntaler)
154 The Stolen Farthings (Der gestohlene Heller)
155 Brides on their Trial (Die Brautschau)
156 Odds and Ends (Die Schlickerlinge)
157 The Sparrow and His Four Children (Der Sperling und seine vier Kinder)
158 The Story of Schlauraffen Land [The Tale of Cockaigne] (Das Märchen
    vom Schlauraffenland)
159 The Ditmarsh Tale of Wonders (Das Diethmarsische Lügenmärchen)
160 A Riddling Tale (Rätselmärchen)
161 Snow-White and Rose-Red (Schneeweißchen und Rosenrot)
162 The Wise Servant (Der kluge Knecht)
163 The Glass Coffin (Der gläserne Sarg)
164 Lazy Harry (Der faule Heinz)
165 The Griffin (Der Vogel Greif)
166 Strong Hans (Der starke Hans)
167 The Peasant in Heaven (Das Bürle im Himmel)
168 Lean Lisa (Die hagere Liese)
169 The Hut in the Forest (Das Waldhaus)
170 Sharing Joy and Sorrow (Lieb und Leid teilen)
171 The Willow-Wren (Der Zaunkönig)
172 The Sole [The Flounder] (Die Scholle)
173 The Bittern and Hoopoe (Rohrdommel und Wiedehopf)
174 The Owl (Die Eule)
175 The Moon (Der Mond)
176 The Duration of Life (Die Lebenszeit)
177 Death's Messengers (Die Boten des Todes)
178 Master Pfriem (Meister Pfriem)
179 The Goose-Girl at the Well (Die Gänsehirtin am Brunnen)
180 Eve's Various Children (Die ungleichen Kinder Evas)
181 The Nixie of the Mill-Pond (Die Nixe im Teich)
182 The Little Folks' Presents (Die Geschenke des kleinen Volkes)
183 The Giant and the Tailor (Der Riese und der Schneider)
184 The Nail (Der Nagel)
185 The Poor Boy in the Grave (Der arme Junge im Grab)
186 The True Sweetheart [The True Bride] (Die wahre Braut)
187 The Hare and the Hedgehog (Der Hase und der Igel)
188 The Spindle, the Shuttle, and the Needle (Spindel, Weberschiffchen und
    Nadel)
189 The Peasant and the Devil (Der Bauer und der Teufel)
190 The Crumbs on the Table (Die Brosamen auf dem Tisch)
191 The Sea-Hare (Das Meerhäschen)
192 The Master Thief (Der Meisterdieb)
193 The Drummer (Der Trommler)
194 The Ear of Corn (Die Kornähre)
195 The Grave Mound (Der Grabhügel)
196 Old Rinkrank (Oll Rinkrank)
197 The Crystal Ball (Die Kristallkugel)
198 Maid Maleen (Jungfrau Maleen)
199 The Boot of Buffalo Leather (Der Stiefel von Büffelleder)
200 The Golden Key (Der goldene Schlüssel)

Children's Legends

Legend 1 St. Joseph in the Forest (Der heilige Joseph im Walde)
Legend 2 The Twelve Apostles (Die zwölf Apostel)
Legend 3 The Rose (Die Rose)
Legend 4 Poverty and Humility Lead to Heaven (Armut und Demut führen zum
         Himmel)
Legend 5 God's Food (Gottes Speise)
Legend 6 The Three Green Twigs (Die drei grünen Zweige)
Legend 7 Our Lady's Little Glass (Muttergottesgläschen)
Legend 8 The Aged Mother (Die alte Mütterchen)
Legend 9 The Heavenly Wedding (Die himmlische Hochzeit)
Legend 10 The Hazel Branch (Die Haselrute)



1 The Frog-King, or Iron Henry

In old times when wishing still helped one, there lived a king whose
daughters were all beautiful, but the youngest was so beautiful that the
sun itself, which has seen so much, was astonished whenever it shone in
her face. Close by the King's castle lay a great dark forest, and under
an old lime-tree in the forest was a well, and when the day was very warm,
the King's child went out into the forest and sat down by the side of the
cool fountain, and when she was dull she took a golden ball, and threw
it up on high and caught it, and this ball was her favorite plaything.

Now it so happened that on one occasion the princess's golden ball did
not fall into the little hand which she was holding up for it, but on to
the ground beyond, and rolled straight into the water. The King's daughter
followed it with her eyes, but it vanished, and the well was deep, so deep
that the bottom could not be seen. On this she began to cry, and cried
louder and louder, and could not be comforted. And as she thus lamented
some one said to her, "What ails thee, King's daughter? Thou weepest so
that even a stone would show pity." She looked round to the side from
whence the voice came, and saw a frog stretching forth its thick, ugly
head from the water. "Ah! old water-splasher, is it thou?" said she;
"I am weeping for my golden ball, which has fallen into the well."

"Be quiet, and do not weep," answered the frog, "I can help thee, but
what wilt thou give me if I bring thy plaything up again?" "Whatever
thou wilt have, dear frog," said she--"My clothes, my pearls and jewels,
and even the golden crown which I am wearing."

The frog answered, "I do not care for thy clothes, thy pearls and
jewels, or thy golden crown, but if thou wilt love me and let me be
thy companion and  play-fellow, and sit by thee at thy little table,
and eat off thy little golden plate, and drink out of thy little cup,
and sleep in thy little bed---if thou wilt promise me this I will go
down below, and bring thee thy golden ball up again."

"Oh yes," said she, "I promise thee all thou wishest, if thou wilt but
bring me my ball back again." She, however, thought, "How the silly
frog does talk! He lives in the water with the other frogs, and croaks,
and can be no companion to any human being!"

But the frog when he had received this promise, put his head into the
water and sank down, and in a short while came swimmming up again with
the ball in his mouth, and threw it on the grass. The King's daughter
was delighted to see her pretty plaything once more, and picked it up,
and ran away with it. "Wait, wait," said the frog. "Take me with thee. I
can't run as thou canst." But what did it avail him to scream his croak,
croak, after her, as loudly as he could? She did not listen to it, but
ran home and soon forgot the poor frog, who was forced to go back into
his well again.

The next day when she had seated herself at table with the King and all
the courtiers, and was eating from her little golden plate, something
came creeping splish splash, splish splash, up the marble staircase, and
when it had got to the top, it knocked at the door and cried, "Princess,
youngest princess, open the door for me." She ran to see who was outside,
but when she opened the door, there sat the frog in front of it. Then
she slammed the door to, in great haste, sat down to dinner again, and
was quite frightened. The King saw plainly that her heart was beating
violently, and said, "My child, what art thou so afraid of? Is  there
perchance a giant outside who wants to carry thee away?" "Ah, no,"
replied she. "It is no giant but a disgusting frog."

"What does a frog want with thee?" "Ah, dear father, yesterday as I was
in the forest sitting by the well, playing, my golden ball fell into the
water. And because I cried so, the frog brought it out again for me,
and because he so insisted, I promised him he should be my companion,
but I never thought he would be able to come out of his water! And now
he is outside there, and wants to come in to me."

In the meantime it knocked a second time, and cried,


       "Princess! youngest princess!
       Open the door for me!
       Dost thou not know what thou saidst to me

       Yesterday by the cool waters of the fountain?
       Princess, youngest princess!
       Open the door for me!"

Then said the King, "That which thou hast promised must thou perform. Go
and let him in." She went and opened the door, and the frog hopped in
and followed her, step by step, to her chair. There he sat and cried,
"Lift me up beside thee." She delayed, until at last the King commanded
her to do it. When the frog was once on the chair he wanted to be on the
table, and when he was on the table he said, "Now, push thy little golden
plate nearer to me that we may eat together." She did this, but it was
easy to see that she did not do it willingly. The frog enjoyed what he
ate, but almost every mouthful she took choked her. At length he said,
"I have eaten and am satisfied; now I am tired, carry me into thy little
room and make thy little silken bed ready, and we will both lie down
and go to sleep."

The King's daughter began to cry, for she was afraid of the cold
frog which she did not like to touch, and which was now to sleep
in her pretty, clean little bed. But the King grew angry and said,
"He who helped thee when thou wert in trouble ought not afterwards to
be despised by thee." So she took hold of the frog with two fingers,
carried him upstairs, and put him in a corner. But when she was in bed
he crept to her and said, "I am tired, I want to sleep as well as thou,
lift me up or I will tell thy father." Then she was terribly angry,
and took him up and threw him with all her might against the wall. "Now,
thou wilt be quiet, odious frog," said she. But when he fell down he was
no frog but a King's son with beautiful kind eyes. He by her father's
will was now her dear companion and husband. Then he told her how he had
been bewitched by a wicked witch, and how no one could have delivered him
from the well but herself, and that to-morrow they would go together into
his kingdom. Then they went to sleep, and next morning when the sun awoke
them, a carriage came driving up with eight white horses, which had white
ostrich feathers on their heads, and were harnessed with golden chains,
and behind stood the young King's servant Faithful Henry. Faithful Henry
had been so unhappy when his master was changed into a frog, that he
had caused three iron bands to be laid round his heart, lest it should
burst with grief and sadness. The carriage was to conduct the young King
into his Kingdom. Faithful Henry helped them both in, and placed himself
behind again, and was full of joy because of this deliverance. And when
they had driven a part of the way the King's son heard a cracking behind
him as if something had broken. So he turned round and cried, "Henry,
the carriage is breaking."

"No, master, it is not the carriage. It is a band from my heart, which
was put there in my great pain when you were a frog and imprisoned in
the well." Again and once again while they were on their way something
cracked, and each time the King's son thought the carriage was breaking;
but it was only the bands which were springing from the heart of faithful
Henry because his master was set free and was happy.



2 Cat and Mouse in Partnership

A certain cat had made the acquaintance of a mouse, and had said so
much to her about the great love and friendship she felt for her,
that at length the mouse agreed that they should live and keep house
together. "But we must make a provision for winter, or else we shall
suffer from hunger," said the cat, "and you, little mouse, cannot venture
everywhere, or you will be caught in a trap some day." The good advice was
followed, and a pot of fat was bought, but they did not know where to put
it. At length, after much consideration, the cat said, "I know no place
where it will be better stored up than in the church, for no one dares
take anything away from there. We will set it beneath the altar, and not
touch it until we are really in need of it." So the pot was placed in
safety, but it was not long before the cat had a great yearning for it,
and said to the mouse, "I want to tell you something, little mouse; my
cousin has brought a little son into the world, and has asked me to be
godmother; he is white with brown spots, and I am to hold him over the
font at the christening. Let me go out to-day, and you  look after the
house by yourself." "Yes, yes," answered the mouse, "by all means go, and
if you get anything very good, think of me, I should like a drop of sweet
red christening wine too." All this, however, was untrue; the cat had no
cousin, and had not been asked to be godmother. She went straight to the
church, stole to the pot of fat, began to lick at it, and licked the top
of the fat off. Then she took a walk upon the roofs of the town, looked
out for opportunities, and then stretched herself in the sun, and licked
her lips whenever she thought of the pot of fat, and not until it was
evening did she return home. "Well, here you are again," said the mouse,
"no doubt you have had a merry day." "All went off well," answered the
cat. "What name did they give the child?" "Top off!" said the cat quite
coolly. "Top off!" cried the mouse, "that is a very odd and uncommon name,
is it a usual one in your family?" "What does it signify," said the cat,
"it is no worse than Crumb-stealer, as your god-children are called."

Before long the cat was seized by another fit of longing. She said to
the mouse, "You must do me a favour, and once more manage the house for
a day alone. I am again asked to be godmother, and, as the child has a
white ring round its neck, I cannot refuse." The good mouse consented,
but the cat crept behind the town walls to the church, and devoured half
the pot of fat. "Nothing ever seems so good as what one keeps to oneself,"
said she, and was quite satisfied with her day's work. When she went home
the mouse inquired, "And what was this child christened?" "Half-done,"
answered the cat. "Half-done! What are you saying? I never heard the
name in my life, I'll wager anything it is not in the calendar!"

The cat's mouth soon began to water for some more licking. "All
good things go in threes," said she, "I am asked to stand godmother
again. The child is quite black, only it has white paws, but with
that exception, it has not a single white hair on its whole body;
this only happens once every few years, you will let me go, won't
you?" "Top-off! Half-done!" answered the mouse, "they are such odd names,
they make me very thoughtful." "You sit at home," said the cat, "in your
dark-grey fur coat and long tail, and are filled with fancies, that's
because you do not go out in the daytime." During the cat's absence the
mouse cleaned the house, and put it in order but the greedy cat entirely
emptied the pot of fat. "When everything is eaten up one has some peace,"
said she to herself, and well filled and fat she did not return home
till night. The mouse at once asked what name had been given to the
third child. "It will not please you more than the others," said the
cat. "He is called All-gone." "All-gone," cried the mouse, "that is the
most suspicious name of all! I have never seen it in print. All-gone;
what can that mean?" and she shook her head, curled herself up, and lay
down to sleep.

From this time forth no one invited the cat to be god-mother, but when
the winter had come and there was no longer anything to be found outside,
the mouse thought of their provision, and said, "Come cat, we will go
to our pot of fat which we have stored up for ourselves---we shall enjoy
that." "Yes," answered the cat, "you will enjoy it as much as you would
enjoy sticking that dainty tongue of yours out of the window." They set
out on their way, but when they arrived, the pot of fat certainly was
still in its place, but it was empty. "Alas!" said the mouse, "now I
see what has happened, now it comes to light! You are a true friend! You
have devoured all when you were standing godmother. First top off, then
half done, then --." "Will you hold your tongue," cried the cat, "one
word more and I will eat you too." "All gone" was already on the poor
mouse's lips; scarcely had she spoken it before the cat sprang on her,
seized her, and swallowed her down. Verily, that is the way of the world.



3 Our Lady's Child

Hard by a great forest dwelt a wood-cutter with his wife, who had an
only child, a little girl three years old. They were so poor, however,
that they no longer had daily bread, and did not know how to get food for
her. One morning the wood-cutter went out sorrowfully to his work in the
forest, and while he was cutting wood, suddenly there stood before him
a tall and beautiful woman with a crown of shining stars on her head,
who said to him, "I am the Virgin Mary, mother of the child Jesus. Thou
art poor and needy, bring thy child to me, I will take her with me and be
her mother, and care for her." The wood-cutter obeyed, brought his child,
and gave her to the Virgin Mary, who took her up to heaven with her. There
the child fared well, ate sugar-cakes, and drank sweet milk, and her
clothes were of gold, and the little angels played with her. And when she
was fourteen years of age, the Virgin Mary called her one day and said,
"Dear child, I am about to make a long journey, so take into thy keeping
the keys of the thirteen doors of heaven. Twelve of these thou mayest
open, and behold the glory which is within them, but the thirteenth, to
which this little key belongs, is forbidden thee. Beware of opening it,
or thou wilt bring misery on thyself." The girl promised to be obedient,
and when the Virgin Mary was gone, she began to examine the dwellings of
the kingdom of heaven. Each day she opened one of them, until she had
made the round of the twelve. In each of them sat one of the Apostles
in the midst of a great light, and she rejoiced in all the magnificence
and splendour, and the little angels who always accompanied her rejoiced
with her. Then the forbidden door alone remained, and she felt a great
desire to know what could be hidden behind it, and said to the angels,
"I will not quite open it, and I will not go inside it, but I will unlock
it so that we can just see a little through the opening." "Oh no," said
the little angels, "that would be a sin. The Virgin Mary has forbidden it,
and it might easily cause thy unhappiness." Then she was silent, but the
desire in her heart was not stilled, but gnawed there and tormented her,
and let her have no rest. And once when the angels had all gone out,
she thought, "Now I am quite alone, and I could peep in. If I do it,
no one will ever know." She sought out the key, and when she had got it
in her hand, she put it in the lock, and when she had put it in, she
turned it round as well. Then the door sprang open, and she saw there
the Trinity sitting in fire and splendour. She stayed there awhile, and
looked at everything in amazement; then she touched the light a little
with her finger, and her finger became quite golden. Immediately a great
fear fell on her. She shut the door violently, and ran away. Her terror
too would not quit her, let her do what she might, and her heart beat
continually and would not be still; the gold too stayed on her finger,
and would not go away, let her rub it and wash it never so much.

It was not long before the Virgin Mary came back from her journey. She
called the girl before her, and asked to have the keys of heaven
back. When the maiden gave her the bunch, the Virgin looked into her
eyes and said, "Hast thou not opened the thirteenth door also?" "No,"
she replied. Then she laid her hand on the girl's heart, and felt how it
beat and beat, and saw right well that she had disobeyed her order and
had opened the door. Then she said once again, "Art thou certain that
thou hast not done it?" "Yes," said the girl, for the second time. Then
she perceived the finger which had become golden from touching the fire
of heaven, and saw well that the child had sinned, and said for the
third time "Hast thou not done it?" "No," said the girl for the third
time. Then said the Virgin Mary, "Thou hast not obeyed me, and besides
that thou hast lied, thou art no longer worthy to be in heaven."

Then the girl fell into a deep sleep, and when she awoke she lay on the
earth below, and in the midst of a wilderness. She wanted to cry out,
but she could bring forth no sound. She sprang up and wanted to run away,
but whithersoever she turned herself, she was continually held back by
thick hedges of thorns through which she could not break. In the desert,
in which she was imprisoned, there stood an old hollow tree, and this had
to be her dwelling-place. Into this she crept when night came, and here
she slept. Here, too, she found a shelter from storm and rain, but it was
a miserable life, and bitterly did she weep when she remembered how happy
she had been in heaven, and how the angels had played with her. Roots
and wild berries were her only food, and for these she sought as far as
she could go. In the autumn she picked up the fallen nuts and leaves,
and carried them into the hole. The nuts were her food in winter, and
when snow and ice came, she crept amongst the leaves like a poor little
animal that she might not freeze. Before long her clothes were all torn,
and one bit of them after another fell off her. As soon, however, as
the sun shone warm again, she went out and sat in front of the tree, and
her long hair covered her on all sides like a mantle. Thus she sat year
after year, and felt the pain and the misery of the world. One day, when
the trees were once more clothed in fresh green, the King of the country
was hunting in the forest, and followed a roe, and as it had fled into
the thicket which shut in this part of the forest, he got off his horse,
tore the bushes asunder, and cut himself a path with his sword. When he
had at last forced his way through, he saw a wonderfully beautiful maiden
sitting under the tree; and she sat there and was entirely covered with
her golden hair down to her very feet. He stood still and looked at her
full of surprise, then he spoke to her and said, "Who art thou? Why art
thou sitting here in the wilderness?" But she gave no answer, for she
could not open her mouth. The King continued, "Wilt thou go with me to
my castle?" Then she just nodded her head a little. The King took her
in his arms, carried her to his horse, and rode home with her, and when
he reached the royal castle he caused her to be dressed in beautiful
garments, and gave her all things in abundance. Although she could not
speak, she was still so beautiful and charming that he began to love
her with all his heart, and it was not long before he married her.

After a year or so had passed, the Queen brought a son into the
world. Thereupon the Virgin Mary appeared to her in the night when she
lay in her bed alone, and said, "If thou wilt tell the truth and confess
that thou didst unlock the forbidden door, I will open thy mouth and give
thee back thy speech, but if thou perseverest in thy sin, and deniest
obstinately, I will take thy new-born child away with me." Then the queen
was permitted to answer, but she remained hard, and said, "No, I did not
open the forbidden door;" and the Virgin Mary took the new-born child from
her arms, and vanished with it. Next morning when the child was not to be
found, it was whispered among the people that the Queen was a man-eater,
and had killed her own child. She heard all this and could say nothing to
the contrary, but the King would not believe it, for he loved her so much.

When a year had gone by the Queen again bore a son, and in the night
the Virgin Mary again came to her, and said, "If thou wilt confess that
thou openedst the forbidden door, I will give thee thy child back and
untie thy tongue; but if you continuest in sin and deniest it, I will
take away with me this new child also." Then the Queen again said, "No,
I did not open the forbidden door;" and the Virgin took the child out
of her arms, and away with her to heaven. Next morning, when this child
also had disappeared, the people declared quite loudly that the Queen
had devoured it, and the King's councillors demanded that she should
be brought to justice. The King, however, loved her so dearly that he
would not believe it, and commanded the councillors under pain of death
not to say any more about it.

The following year the Queen gave birth to a beautiful little daughter,
and for the third time the Virgin Mary appeared to her in the night and
said, "Follow me." She took the Queen by the hand and led her to heaven,
and showed her there her two eldest children, who smiled at her, and were
playing with the ball of the world. When the Queen rejoiced thereat, the
Virgin Mary said, "Is thy heart not yet softened? If thou wilt own that
thou openedst the forbidden door, I will give thee back thy two little
sons." But for the third time the Queen answered, "No, I did not open the
forbidden door." Then the Virgin let her sink down to earth once more,
and took from her likewise her third child.

Next morning, when the loss was reported abroad, all the people cried
loudly, "The Queen is a man-eater. She must be judged," and the King was
no longer able to restrain his councillors. Thereupon a trial was held,
and as she could not answer, and defend herself, she was condemned to
be burnt alive. The wood was got together, and when she was fast bound
to the stake, and the fire began to burn round about her, the hard ice
of pride melted, her heart was moved by repentance, and she thought,
"If I could but confess before my death that I opened the door." Then her
voice came back to her, and she cried out loudly, "Yes, Mary, I did it;"
and straight-way rain fell from the sky and extinguished the flames of
fire, and a light broke forth above her, and the Virgin Mary descended
with the two little sons by her side, and the new-born daughter in her
arms. She spoke kindly to her, and said, "He who repents his sin and
acknowledges it, is forgiven." Then she gave her the three children,
untied her tongue, and granted her happiness for her whole life.



4 The Story of the Youth Who Went Forth to Learn What Fear Was

A certain father had two sons, the elder of whom was smart and sensible,
and could do everything, but the younger was stupid and could neither
learn nor understand anything, and when people saw him they said, "There's
a fellow who will give his father some trouble!" When anything had to be
done, it was always the elder who was forced to do it; but if his father
bade him fetch anything when it was late, or in the night-time, and the
way led through the churchyard, or any other dismal place, he answered
"Oh, no, father, I'll not go there, it makes me shudder!" for he was
afraid. Or when stories were told by the fire at night which made the
flesh creep, the listeners sometimes said "Oh, it makes us shudder!"
The younger sat in a corner and listened with the rest of them, and
could not imagine what they could mean. "They are always saying 'it
makes me shudder, it makes me shudder!' It does not make me shudder,"
thought he. "That, too, must  be an art of which I understand nothing."

Now it came to pass that his father said to him one day "Hearken to me,
thou fellow in the corner there, thou art growing tall and strong, and
thou too must learn something by which thou canst earn thy living. Look
how thy brother works, but thou dost not even earn thy salt." "Well,
father," he replied, "I am quite willing to learn something---indeed, if
it could but be managed, I should like to learn how to shudder. I don't
understand that at all yet." The elder brother smiled when he heard that,
and thought to himself, "Good God, what a blockhead that brother of mine
is! He will never be good for anything as long as he lives. He who wants
to be a sickle must bend himself betimes."

The father sighed, and answered him "thou shalt soon learn what it is
to shudder, but thou wilt not earn thy bread by that."

Soon after this the sexton came to the house on a visit, and the father
bewailed his trouble, and told him how his younger son was so backward
in every respect that he knew nothing and learnt nothing. "Just think,"
said he, "when I asked him how he was going to earn his bread, he
actually wanted to learn to shudder." "If that be all," replied the
sexton, "he can learn that with me. Send him to me, and I will soon
polish him." The father was glad to do it, for he thought, "It will
train the boy a little." The sexton therefore took him into his house,
and he had to ring the bell. After a day or two, the sexton awoke him
at midnight, and bade him arise and go up into the church tower and
ring the bell. "Thou shalt soon learn what shuddering is," thought he,
and secretly went there before him; and when the boy was at the top
of the tower and turned round, and was just going to take hold of the
bell rope, he saw a white figure standing on the stairs opposite the
sounding hole. "Who is there?" cried he, but the figure made no reply,
and did not move or stir. "Give an answer," cried the boy, "or take thy
self off, thou hast no business here at night."

The sexton, however, remained standing motionless that the boy might
think he was a ghost. The boy cried a second time, "What do you want
here?---speak if thou art an honest fellow, or I will throw thee down the
steps!" The sexton thought, "he can't intend to be as bad as his words,"
uttered no sound and stood as if he were made of stone. Then the boy
called to him for the third time, and as that was also to no purpose,
he ran against him and pushed the ghost down the stairs, so that it
fell down ten steps and remained lying there in a corner. Thereupon
he rang the bell, went home, and without saying a word went to bed,
and fell asleep. The sexton's wife waited a long time for her husband,
but he did not come back. At length she became uneasy, and wakened the
boy, and asked, "Dost thou not know where my husband is? He climbed
up the tower before thou didst." "No, I don't know," replied the boy,
"but some one was standing by the sounding hole on the other side of the
steps, and as he would neither give an answer nor go away, I took him for
a scoundrel, and threw him downstairs, just go there and you will see if
it was he. I should be sorry if it were." The woman ran away and found
her husband, who was lying moaning in the corner, and had broken his leg.

She carried him down, and then with loud screams she hastened to the
boy's father. "Your boy," cried she, "has been the cause of a great
misfortune! He has thrown my husband down the steps and made him break his
leg. Take the good-for-nothing fellow away from our house." The father was
terrified, and ran thither and scolded the boy. "What wicked tricks are
these?" said he, "the devil must have put this into thy head." "Father,"
he replied, "do listen to me. I am quite innocent. He was standing there
by night like one who is intending to do some evil. I did not know who it
was, and I entreated him three times either to speak or to go away." "Ah,"
said the father, "I have nothing but unhappiness with you. Go out of my
sight. I will see thee no more."

"Yes, father, right willingly, wait only until it is day. Then will I go
forth and learn how to shudder, and then I shall, at any rate, understand
one art which will support me." "Learn what thou wilt," spake the father,
"it is all the same to me. Here are fifty thalers for thee. Take these
and go into the wide world, and tell no one from whence thou comest,
and who is thy father, for I have reason to be ashamed of thee." "Yes,
father, it shall be as you will. If you desire nothing more than that,
I can easily keep it in mind."

When day dawned, therefore, the boy put his fifty thalers into his pocket,
and went forth on the great highway, and continually said to himself,
"If I could but shudder! If I could but shudder!" Then a man approached
who heard this conversation which the youth was holding with himself,
and when they had walked a little farther to where they could see the
gallows, the man said to him, "Look, there is the tree where seven
men have married the ropemaker's daughter, and are now learning how to
fly. Sit down below it, and wait till night comes, and you will soon
learn how to shudder." "If that is all that is wanted," answered the
youth, "it is easily done; but if I learn how to shudder as fast as
that, thou shalt have my fifty thalers. Just come back to me early in
the morning." Then the youth went to the gallows, sat down below it,
and waited till evening came. And as he was cold, he lighted himself a
fire, but at midnight the wind blew so sharply that in spite of his fire,
he could not get warm. And as the wind knocked the hanged men against
each other, and they moved backwards and forwards, he thought to himself
"Thou shiverest below by the fire, but how those up above must freeze
and suffer!" And as he felt pity for them, he raised the ladder, and
climbed up, unbound one of them after the other, and brought down all
seven. Then he stirred the fire, blew it, and set them all round it
to warm themselves. But they sat there and did not stir, and the fire
caught their clothes. So he said, "Take care, or I will hang you up
again." The dead men, however, did not hear, but were quite silent,
and let their rags go on burning. On this he grew angry, and said,
"If you will not take care, I cannot help you, I will not be burnt with
you," and he hung them up again each in his turn. Then he sat down by
his fire and fell asleep, and the next morning the man came to him and
wanted to have the fifty thalers, and said, "Well, dost thou know how
to shudder?" "No," answered he, "how was I to get to know? Those fellows
up there did not open their mouths, and were so stupid that they let the
few old rags which they had on their bodies get burnt." Then the man saw
that he would not get the fifty thalers that day, and went away saying,
"One of this kind has never come my way before."

The youth likewise went his way, and once more began to mutter to
himself, "Ah, if I could but shudder! Ah, if I could but shudder!" A
waggoner who was striding behind him heard that and asked, "Who are
you?" "I don't know," answered the youth. Then the waggoner asked,
"From whence comest thou?" "I know not." "Who is thy father?" "That I
may not tell thee." "What is it that thou art always muttering between
thy teeth." "Ah," replied the youth, "I do so wish I could shudder, but
no one can teach me how to do it." "Give up thy foolish chatter," said
the waggoner. "Come, go with me, I will see about a place for thee." The
youth went with the waggoner, and in the evening they arrived at an inn
where they wished to pass the night. Then at the entrance of the room
the youth again said quite loudly, "If I could but shudder! If I could
but shudder!" The host who heard this, laughed and said, "If that is
your desire, there ought to be a good opportunity for you here." "Ah,
be silent," said the hostess, "so many inquisitive persons have already
lost their lives, it would be a pity and a shame if such beautiful eyes
as these should never see the daylight again."

But the youth said, "However difficult it may be, I will learn it and
for this purpose indeed have I journeyed forth." He let the host have
no rest, until the latter told him, that not far from thence stood a
haunted castle where any one could very easily learn what shuddering was,
if he would but watch in it for three nights. The King had promised that
he who would venture should have his daughter to wife, and she was the
most beautiful maiden the sun shone on. Great treasures likewise lay
in the castle, which were guarded by evil spirits, and these treasures
would then be freed, and would make a poor man rich enough. Already many
men had gone into the castle, but as yet none had come out again. Then
the youth went next morning to the King and said if he were allowed
he would watch three nights in the haunted castle. The King looked
at him, and as the youth pleased him, he said, "Thou mayest ask for
three things to take into the castle with thee, but they must be things
without life." Then he answered, "Then I ask for a fire, a turning lathe,
and a cutting-board with the knife." The King had these things carried
into the castle for him during the day. When night was drawing near,
the youth went up and made himself a bright fire in one of the rooms,
placed the cutting-board and knife beside it, and seated himself by the
turning-lathe. "Ah, if I could but shudder!" said he, "but I shall not
learn it here either." Towards midnight he was about to poke his fire,
and as he was blowing it, something cried suddenly from one corner,
"Au, miau! how cold we are!" "You simpletons!" cried he, "what are you
crying about? If you are cold, come and take a seat by the fire and warm
yourselves." And when he had said that, two great black cats came with
one tremendous leap and sat down on each side of him, and looked savagely
at him with their fiery eyes. After a short time, when they had warmed
themselves, they said, "Comrade, shall we have a game at cards?" "Why
not?" he replied, "but just show me your paws." Then they stretched
out their claws. "Oh," said he, "what long nails you have! Wait, I must
first cut them for you." Thereupon he seized them by the throats, put
them on the cutting-board and screwed their feet fast. "I have looked at
your fingers," said he, "and my fancy for card-playing has gone," and he
struck them dead and threw them out into the water. But when he had made
away with these two, and was about to sit down again by his fire, out
from every hole and corner came black cats and black dogs with red-hot
chains, and more and more of them came until he could no longer stir,
and they yelled horribly, and got on his fire, pulled it to pieces, and
tried to put it out. He watched them for a while quietly, but at last
when they were going too far, he seized his cutting-knife, and cried,
"Away with ye, vermin," and began to cut them down. Part of them ran
away, the others he killed, and threw out into the fish-pond. When he
came back he fanned the embers of his fire again and warmed himself. And
as he thus sat, his eyes would keep open no longer, and he felt a desire
to sleep. Then he looked round and saw a great bed in the corner. "That
is the very thing for me," said he, and got into it. When he was just
going to shut his eyes, however, the bed began to move of its own accord,
and went over the whole of the castle. "That's right," said he, "but go
faster." Then the bed rolled on as if six horses were harnessed to it,
up and down, over thresholds and steps, but suddenly hop, hop, it turned
over upside down, and lay on him like a mountain. But he threw quilts
and pillows up in the air, got out and said, "Now any one who likes,
may drive," and lay down by his fire, and slept till it was day. In the
morning the King came, and when he saw him lying there on the ground,
he thought the evil spirits had killed him and he was dead. Then said he,
"After all it is a pity,---he is a handsome man." The youth heard it, got
up, and said, "It has not come to that yet." Then the King was astonished,
but very glad, and asked how he had fared. "Very well indeed," answered
he; "one night is past, the two others will get over likewise." Then
he went to the innkeeper, who opened his eyes very wide, and said, "I
never expected to see thee alive again! Hast thou learnt how to shudder
yet?" "No," said he, "it is all in vain. If some one would but tell me."

The second night he again went up into the old castle, sat down by the
fire, and once more began his old song, "If I could but shudder." When
midnight came, an uproar and noise of tumbling about was heard; at first
it was low, but it grew louder and louder. Then it was quiet for awhile,
and at length with a loud scream, half a man came down the chimney and
fell before him. "Hollo!" cried he, "another half belongs to this. This
is too little!" Then the uproar began again, there was a roaring and
howling, and the other half fell down likewise. "Wait," said he, "I
will just blow up the fire a little for thee." When he had done that and
looked round again, the two pieces were joined together, and a frightful
man was sitting in his place. "That is no part of our bargain," said the
youth, "the bench is mine." The man wanted to push him away; the youth,
however, would not allow that, but thrust him off with all his strength,
and seated himself again in his own place. Then still more men fell down,
one after the other; they brought nine dead men's legs and two skulls,
and set them up and played at nine-pins with them. The youth also
wanted to play and said "Hark you, can I join you?" "Yes, if thou hast
any money." "Money enough," replied he, "but your balls are not quite
round." Then he took the skulls and put them in the lathe and turned
them till they were round. "There, now, they will roll better!" said
he. "Hurrah! Now it goes merrily!" He played with them and lost some
of his money, but when it struck twelve, everything vanished from his
sight. He lay down and quietly fell asleep. Next morning the King came to
inquire after him. "How has it fared with you this time?" asked he. "I
have been playing at nine-pins," he answered, "and have lost a couple
of farthings." "Hast thou not shuddered then?" "Eh, what?" said he,
"I have made merry. If I did but know what it was to shudder!"

The third night he sat down again on his bench and said quite sadly, "If
I could but shudder." When it grew late, six tall men came in and brought
a coffin. Then said he, "Ha, ha, that is certainly my little cousin, who
died only a few days ago," and he beckoned with his finger, and cried
"Come, little cousin, come." They placed the coffin on the ground, but
he went to it and took the lid off, and a dead man lay therein. He felt
his face, but it was cold as ice. "Stop," said he, "I will warm thee a
little," and went to the fire and warmed his hand and laid it on the dead
man's face, but he remained cold. Then he took him out, and sat down by
the fire and laid him on his breast and rubbed his arms that the blood
might circulate again. As this also did no good, he thought to himself
"When two people lie in bed together, they warm each other," and carried
him to the bed, covered him over and lay down by him. After a short time
the dead man became warm too, and began to move. Then said the youth,
"See, little cousin, have I not warmed thee?" The dead man, however,
got up and cried, "Now will I strangle thee."

"What!" said he, "is that the way thou thankest me? Thou shalt at once go
into thy coffin again," and he took him up, threw him into it, and shut
the lid. Then came the six men and carried him away again. "I cannot
manage to shudder," said he. "I shall never learn it here as long as
I live."

Then a man entered who was taller than all others, and looked terrible. He
was old, however, and had a long white beard. "Thou wretch," cried he,
"thou shalt soon learn what it is to shudder, for thou shalt die." "Not
so fast," replied the youth. "If I am to die, I shall have to have a say
in it." "I will soon seize thee," said the fiend. "Softly, softly, do not
talk so big. I am as strong as thou art, and perhaps even stronger." "We
shall see," said the old man. "If thou art stronger, I will let thee
go---come, we will try." Then he led him by dark passages to a smith's
forge, took an axe, and with one blow struck an anvil into the ground. "I
can do better than that," said the youth, and went to the other anvil. The
old man placed himself near and wanted to look on, and his white beard
hung down. Then the youth seized the axe, split the anvil with one blow,
and struck the old man's beard in with it. "Now I have thee," said the
youth. "Now it is thou who will have to die." Then he seized an iron
bar and beat the old man till he moaned and entreated him to stop, and
he would give him great riches. The youth drew out the axe and let him
go. The old man led him back into the castle, and in a cellar showed
him three chests full of gold. "Of these," said he, "one part is for
the poor, the other for the king, the third is thine." In the meantime
it struck twelve, and the spirit disappeared; the youth, therefore, was
left in darkness. "I shall still be able to find my way out," said he,
and felt about, found the way into the room, and slept there by his
fire. Next morning the King came and said "Now thou must have learnt
what shuddering is?" "No," he answered; "what can it be? My dead cousin
was here, and a bearded man came and showed me a great deal of money down
below, but no one told me what it was to shudder." "Then," said the King,
"thou hast delivered the castle, and shalt marry my daughter." "That is
all very well," said he, "but still I do not know what it is to shudder."

Then the gold was brought up and the wedding celebrated; but howsoever
much the young king loved his wife, and however happy he was, he still
said always "If I could but shudder---if I could but shudder." And at
last she was angry at this. Her waiting-maid said, "I will find a cure
for him; he shall soon learn what it is to shudder." She went out to
the stream which flowed through the garden, and had a whole bucketful
of gudgeons brought to her. At night when the young king was sleeping,
his wife was to draw the clothes off him and empty the bucketful of
cold water with the gudgeons in it over him, so that the little fishes
would sprawl about him. When this was done, he woke up and cried "Oh,
what makes me shudder so?---what makes me shudder so, dear wife? Ah! now
I know what it is to shudder!"



5 The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids

There was once upon a time an old goat who had seven little kids, and
loved them with all the love of a mother for her children. One day she
wanted to go into the forest and fetch some food. So she called all seven
to her and said, "Dear children, I have to go into the forest, be on your
guard against the wolf; if he come in, he will devour you all---skin,
hair, and all. The wretch often disguises himself, but you will know
him at once by his rough voice and his black feet." The kids said, "Dear
mother, we will take good care of ourselves; you may go away without any
anxiety." Then the old one bleated, and went on her way with an easy mind.

It was not long before some one knocked at the house-door and called,
"Open the door, dear children; your mother is here, and has brought
something back with her for each of you." But the little kids knew
that it was the wolf, by the rough voice; "We will not open the door,"
cried they, "thou art not our mother.  She has a soft, pleasant voice,
but thy voice is rough; thou art the wolf!" Then the wolf went away to a
shopkeeper and bought himself a great lump of chalk, ate this and made
his voice soft with it. The he came back, knocked at the door of the
house, and cried, "Open the door, dear children, your mother is here
and has brought something back with her for each of you." But the wolf
had laid his black paws against the window, and the children saw them
and cried, "We will not open the door, our mother has not black feet
like thee; thou art the wolf." Then the wolf ran to a baker and said,
"I have hurt my feet, rub some dough over them for me." And when the
baker had rubbed his feet over, he ran to the miller and said, "Strew
some white meal over my feet for me." The miller thought to himself,
"The wolf wants to deceive someone," and refused; but the wolf said,
"If thou wilt not do it, I will devour thee." Then the miller was afraid,
and made his paws white for him. Truly men are like that.

So now the wretch went for the third time to the house-door, knocked at
it and said, "Open the door for me, children, your dear little mother
has come home, and has brought every one of you something back from
the forest with her." The little kids cried, "First show us thy paws
that we may know if thou art our dear little mother." Then he put his
paws in through the window, and when the kids saw that they were white,
they believed that all he said was true, and opened the door. But who
should come in but the wolf! They were terrified and wanted to hide
themselves. One sprang under the table, the second into the bed, the
third into the stove, the fourth into the kitchen, the fifth into the
cupboard, the sixth under the washing-bowl, and the seventh into the
clock-case. But the wolf found them all, and used no great ceremony;
one after the other he swallowed them down his throat. The youngest,
who was in the clock-case, was the only one he did not find. When the
wolf had satisfied his appetite he took himself off, laid himself
down under a tree in the green meadow outside, and began to sleep.
Soon afterwards the old goat came home again from the forest. Ah! What a
sight she saw there! The house-door stood wide open. The table, chairs,
and benches were thrown down, the washing-bowl lay broken to pieces, and
the quilts and pillows were pulled off the bed. She sought her children,
but they were nowhere to be found. She called them one after another
by name, but no one answered.  At last, when she came to the youngest,
a soft voice cried, "Dear mother, I am in the clock-case." She took the
kid out, and it told her that the wolf had come and had eaten all the
others. Then you may imagine how she wept over her poor children.

At length in her grief she went out, and the youngest kid ran with
her. When they came to the meadow, there lay the wolf by the tree and
snored so loud that the branches shook. She looked at him on every
side and saw that something was moving and struggling in his gorged
belly. "Ah, heavens," said she, "is it possible that my poor children
whom he has swallowed down for his supper, can be still alive?" Then
the kid had to run home and fetch scissors, and a needle and thread,
and the goat cut open the monster's stomach, and hardly had she make
one cut, than one little kid thrust its head out, and when she cut
farther, all six sprang out one after another, and were all still alive,
and had suffered no injury whatever, for in his greediness the monster
had swallowed them down whole.  What rejoicing there was! They embraced
their dear mother, and jumped like a sailor at his wedding. The mother,
however, said, "Now go and look for some big stones, and we will fill
the wicked beast's stomach with them while he is still asleep." Then the
seven kids dragged the stones thither with all speed, and put as many of
them into his stomach as they could get in; and the mother sewed him up
again in the greatest haste, so that he was not aware of anything and
never once stirred.

When the wolf at length had had his sleep out, he got on his legs, and
as the stones in his stomach made him very thirsty, he wanted to go to
a well to drink.  But when he began to walk and move about, the stones
in his stomach knocked against each other and rattled. Then cried he,



   "What rumbles and tumbles
   Against my poor bones?
   I thought 't was six kids,
   But it's naught but big stones."



And when he got to the well and stooped over the water and was just
about to drink, the heavy stones made him fall in, and there was no help,
but he had to drown miserably. When the seven kids saw that, they came
running to the spot and cried aloud, "The wolf is dead! The wolf is
dead!" and danced for joy round about the well with their mother.



6  Faithful John

There was once on a time an old king who was ill, and thought to himself,
"I am lying on what must be my death-bed." Then said he, "Tell Faithful
John to come to me." Faithful John was his favourite servant, and was so
called, because he had for his whole life long been so true to him. When
therefore he came beside the bed, the King said to him, "Most faithful
John, I feel my end approaching, and have no anxiety except about my
son. He is still of tender age, and cannot always know how to guide
himself. If thou dost not promise me to teach him everything that he
ought to know, and to be his foster-father, I cannot close my eyes in
peace." Then answered Faithful John, "I will not forsake him, and will
serve him with fidelity, even if it should cost me my life." On this,
the old King said, "Now I die in comfort and peace." Then he added,
"After my death, thou shalt show him the whole castle: all the chambers,
halls, and vaults, and all the treasures which lie therein, but the last
chamber in the long gallery, in which is the picture of the princess
of the Golden Dwelling, shalt thou not show. If he sees that picture,
he will fall violently in love with her, and will drop down in a swoon,
and go through great danger for her sake, therefore thou must preserve
him from that." And when Faithful John had once more given his promise
to the old King about this, the King said no more, but laid his head on
his pillow, and died.

When the old King had been carried to his grave, Faithful John told
the young King all that he had promised his father on his deathbed,
and said, "This will I assuredly perform, and will be faithful to thee
as I have been faithful to him, even if it should cost me my life." When
the mourning was over, Faithful John said to him, "It is now time that
thou shouldst see thine inheritance. I will show thee thy father's
palace." Then he took him about everywhere, up and down, and let him
see all the riches, and the magnificent apartments, only there was one
room which he did not open, that in which hung the dangerous picture. The
picture was, however, so placed that when the door was opened you looked
straight on it, and it was so admirably painted that it seemed to breathe
and live, and there was nothing more charming or more beautiful in the
whole world. The young King, however, plainly remarked that Faithful
John always walked past this one door, and said, "Why dost thou never
open this one for me?" "There is something within it," he replied, "which
would terrify thee." But the King answered, "I have seen all the palace,
and I will know what is in this room also," and he went and tried to
break open the door by force. Then Faithful John held him back and said,
"I promised thy father before his death that thou shouldst not see that
which is in this chamber, it might bring the greatest misfortune on
thee and on me." "Ah, no," replied the young King, "if I do not go in,
it will be my certain destruction. I should have no rest day or night
until I had seen it with my own eyes. I shall not leave the place now
until thou hast unlocked the door."

Then Faithful John saw that there was no help for it now, and with a heavy
heart and many sighs, sought out the key from the great bunch. When he
had opened the door, he went in first, and thought by standing before
him he could hide the portrait so that the King should not see it in
front of him, but what availed that?  The King stood on tip-toe and
saw it over his shoulder. And when he saw the portrait of the maiden,
which was so magnificent and shone with gold and precious stones, he
fell fainting to the ground. Faithful John took him up, carried him to
his bed, and sorrowfully thought, "The misfortune has befallen us, Lord
God, what will be the end of it?" Then he strengthened him with wine,
until he came to himself again. The first words the King said were,
"Ah, the beautiful portrait! whose it it?" "That is the princess of
the Golden Dwelling," answered Faithful John. Then the King continued,
"My love for her is so great, that if all the leaves on all the trees
were tongues, they could not declare it. I will give my life to win
her. Thou art my most Faithful John, thou must help me."

The faithful servant considered within himself for a long time how to
set about the matter, for it was difficult even to obtain a sight of the
King's daughter. At length he thought of a way, and said to the King,
"Everything which she has about her is of gold---tables, chairs, dishes,
glasses, bowls, and household furniture. Among thy treasures are five
tons of gold; let one of the goldsmiths of the Kingdom work these up
into all manner of vessels and utensils, into all kinds of birds, wild
beasts and strange animals, such as may please her, and we will go there
with them and try our luck."

The King ordered all the goldsmiths to be brought to him, and they
had to work night and day until at last the most splendid things were
prepared. When everything was stowed on board a ship, Faithful John put on
the dress of a merchant, and the King was forced to do the same in order
to make himself quite unrecognizable. Then they sailed across the sea,
and sailed on until they came to the town wherein dwelt the princess of
the Golden Dwelling.

Faithful John bade the King stay behind on the ship, and wait for
him. "Perhaps I shall bring the princess with me," said he, "therefore
see that everything is in order; have the golden vessels set out and
the whole ship decorated." Then he gathered together in his apron all
kinds of gold things, went on shore and walked straight to the royal
palace. When he entered the courtyard of the palace, a beautiful girl
was standing there by the well with two golden buckets in her hand,
drawing water with them. And when she was just turning round to carry
away the sparkling water she saw the stranger, and asked who he was. So
he answered, "I am a merchant," and opened his apron, and let her look
in. Then she cried, "Oh, what beautiful gold things!" and put her pails
down and looked at the golden wares one after the other. Then said the
girl, "The princess must see these, she has such great pleasure in golden
things, that she will buy all you have." She took him by the hand and led
him upstairs, for she was the waiting-maid. When the King's daughter saw
the wares, she was quite delighted and said, "They are so beautifully
worked, that I will buy them all of thee." But Faithful John said, "I
am only the servant of a rich merchant. The things I have here are not
to be compared with those my master has in his ship. They are the most
beautiful and valuable things that have ever been made in gold." She
wanted to have everything brought to her there, but he said, "There
are so many of them that it would take a great many days to do that,
and so many rooms would be required to exhibit them, that your house is
not big enough." Then her curiosity and longing were still more excited,
until at last she said, "Conduct me to the ship, I will go there myself,
and behold the treasures of thine master."

On this Faithful John was quite delighted, and led her to the ship, and
when the King saw her, he perceived that her beauty was even greater than
the picture had represented it to be, and thought no other than that his
heart would burst in twain. Then she got into the ship, and the King led
her within. Faithful John, however, remained behind with the pilot, and
ordered the ship to be pushed off, saying, "Set all sail, till it fly like
a bird in air." Within, however, the King showed her the golden vessels,
every one of them, also the wild beasts and strange animals. Many hours
went by whilst she was seeing everything, and in her delight she did not
observe that the ship was sailing away. After she had looked at the last,
she thanked the merchant and wanted to go home, but when she came to the
side of the ship, she saw that it was on the deep sea far from land,
and hurrying onwards with all sail set. "Ah," cried she in her alarm,
"I am betrayed! I am carried away and have fallen into the power of
a merchant---I would die rather!" The King, however, seized her hand,
and said, "I am not a merchant. I am a king, and of no meaner origin than
thou art, and if I have carried thee away with subtlety, that has come to
pass because of my exceeding great love for thee.  The first time that I
looked on thy portrait, I fell fainting to the ground." When the princess
of the Golden Dwelling heard that, she was comforted, and her heart was
inclined unto him, so that she willingly consented to be his wife.

It so happened, however, while they were sailing onwards over the deep
sea, that Faithful John, who was sitting on the fore part of the vessel,
making music, saw three ravens in the air, which came flying towards
them. On this he stopped playing and listened to what they were saying
to each other, for that he well understood. One cried, "Oh, there he is
carrying home the princess of the Golden Dwelling." "Yes," replied the
second, "but he has not got her yet." Said the third, "But he has got
her, she is sitting beside him in the ship." Then the first began again,
and cried, "What good will that do him? When they reach land a chestnut
horse will leap forward to meet him, and the prince will want to mount
it, but if he does that, it will run away with him, and rise up into the
air with him, and he will never see his maiden more." Spake the second,
"But is there no escape?"

"Oh, yes, if any one else gets on it swiftly, and takes out the pistol
which must be in its holster, and shoots the horse dead with it, the
young King is saved. But who knows that? And whosoever does know it, and
tells it to him, will be turned to stone from the toe to the knee." Then
said the second, "I know more than that; even if the horse be killed,
the young King will still not keep his bride. When they go into the
castle together, a wrought bridal garment will be lying there in a dish,
and looking as if it were woven of gold and silver; it is, however,
nothing but sulphur and pitch, and if he put it on, it will burn him to
the very bone and marrow." Said the third, "Is there no escape at all?"

"Oh, yes," replied the second, "if any one with gloves on seizes the
garment and throws it into the fire and burns it, the young King will be
saved. "But what avails that?" "Whosoever knows it and tells it to him,
half his body will become stone from the knee to the heart."

Then said the third, "I know still more; even if the bridal garment be
burnt, the young King will still not have his bride. After the wedding,
when the dancing begins and the young queen is dancing, she will suddenly
turn pale and fall down as if dead, and if some one does not lift her
up and draw three drops of blood from her right breast and spit them
out again, she will die. But if any one who knows that were to declare
it, he would become stone from the crown of his head to the sole of his
foot." When the ravens had spoken of this together, they flew onwards,
and Faithful John had well understood everything, but from that time
forth he became quiet and sad, for if he concealed what he had heard from
his master, the latter would be unfortunate, and if he discovered it to
him, he himself must sacrifice his life. At length, however, he said to
himself, "I will save my master, even if it bring destruction on myself."

When therefore they came to shore, all happened as had been foretold
by the ravens, and a magnificent chestnut horse sprang forward. "Good,"
said the King, "he shall carry me to my palace," and was about to mount
it when Faithful John got before him, jumped quickly on it, drew the
pistol out of the holster, and shot the horse. Then the other attendants
of the King, who after all were not very fond of Faithful John, cried,
"How shameful to kill the beautiful animal, that was to have carried the
King to his palace." But the King said, "Hold your peace and leave him
alone, he is my most faithful John, who knows what may be the good of
that!" They went into the palace, and in the hall there stood a dish,
and therein lay the bridal garment looking no otherwise than as if it
were made of gold and silver. The young King went towards it and was
about to take hold of it, but Faithful John pushed him away, seized it
with gloves on, carried it quickly to the fire and burnt it. The other
attendants again began to murmur, and said, "Behold, now he is even
burning the King's bridal garment!" But the young King said, "Who knows
what good he may have done, leave him alone, he is my most faithful John."

And now the wedding was solemnized: the dance began, and the bride also
took part in it; then Faithful John was watchful and looked into her
face, and suddenly she turned pale and fell to the ground, as if she
were dead. On this he ran hastily to her, lifted her up and bore her
into a chamber---then he laid her down, and knelt and sucked the three
drops of blood from her right breast, and spat them out. Immediately she
breathed again and recovered herself, but the young King had seen this,
and being ignorant why Faithful John had done it, was angry and cried,
"Throw him into a dungeon." Next morning Faithful John was condemned,
and led to the gallows, and when he stood on high, and was about to be
executed, he said, "Every one who has to die is permitted before his end
to make one last speech; may I too claim the right?" "Yes," answered
the King, "it shall be granted unto thee." Then said Faithful John,
"I am unjustly condemned, and have always been true to thee," and he
related how he had hearkened to the conversation of the ravens when on
the sea, and how he had been obliged to do all these things in order to
save his master. Then cried the King, "Oh, my most Faithful John. Pardon,
pardon---bring him down." But as Faithful John spoke the last word he
had fallen down lifeless and become a stone.

Thereupon the King and the Queen suffered great anguish, and the King
said, "Ah, how ill I have requited great fidelity!" and ordered the stone
figure to be taken up and placed in his bedroom beside his bed. And as
often as he looked on it he wept and said, "Ah, if I could bring thee
to life again, my most faithful John." Some time passed and the Queen
bore twins, two sons who grew fast and were her delight. Once when the
Queen was at church and the two children were sitting playing beside
their father, the latter full of grief again looked at the stone figure,
sighed and said, "Ah, if I could but bring thee to life again, my most
faithful John." Then the stone began to speak and said, "Thou canst bring
me to life again if thou wilt use for that purpose what is dearest to
thee." Then cried the King, "I will give everything I have in the world
for thee." The stone continued, "If thou wilt will cut off the heads of
thy two children with thine own hand, and sprinkle me with their blood,
I shall be restored to life."

The King was terrified when he heard that he himself must kill his
dearest children, but he thought of faithful John's great fidelity, and
how he had died for him, drew his sword, and with his own hand cut off
the children's heads. And when he had smeared the stone with their blood,
life returned to it, and Faithful John stood once more safe and healthy
before him. He said to the King, "Thy truth shall not go unrewarded,"
and took the heads of the children, put them on again, and rubbed the
wounds with their blood, on which they became whole again immediately,
and jumped about, and went on playing as if nothing had happened. Then
the King was full of joy, and when he saw the Queen coming he hid Faithful
John and the two children in a great cupboard. When she entered, he said
to her, "Hast thou been praying in the church?" "Yes," answered she,
"but I have constantly been thinking of Faithful John and what misfortune
has befallen him through us." Then said he, "Dear wife, we can give him
his life again, but it will cost us our two little sons, whom we must
sacrifice." The Queen turned pale, and her heart was full of terror,
but she said, "We owe it to him, for his great fidelity." Then the King
was rejoiced that she thought as he had thought, and went and opened the
cupboard, and brought forth Faithful John and the children, and said,
"God be praised, he is delivered, and we have our little sons again also,"
and told her how everything had occurred. Then they dwelt together in
much happiness until their death.



7 The Good Bargain

There was once a peasant who had driven his cow to the fair, and sold
her for seven thalers. On the way home he had to pass a pond, and already
from afar he heard the frogs crying, "Aik, aik, aik, aik." "Well," said he
to himself, "they are talking without rhyme or reason, it is seven that
I have received, not eight." When he got to the water, he cried to them,
"Stupid animals that you are! Don't you know better than that? It is seven
thalers and not eight." The frogs, however, stood to their, "aik aik,
aik, aik." "Come, then, if you won't believe it, I can count it out to
you." And he took his money out of his pocket and counted out the seven
thalers, always reckoning four and twenty groschen to a thaler. The
frogs, however, paid no attention to his reckoning, but still cried,
"aik, aik, aik, aik."  "What," cried the peasant, quite angry, "since you
are determined to know better than I, count it yourselves," and threw all
the money into the water to them. He stood still and wanted to wait until
they were done and had brought him his own again, but the frogs maintained
their opinion and cried continually, "aik, aik, aik, aik," and besides
that, did not throw the money out again. He still waited a long while
until evening came on and he was forced to go home. Then he abused the
frogs and cried, "You water-splashers, you thick-heads, you goggle-eyes,
you have great mouths and can screech till you hurt one's ears, but you
cannot count seven thalers! Do you think I'm going to stand here till
you get done?" And with that he went away, but the frogs still cried,
"aik, aik, aik, aik," after him till he went home quite angry.

After a while he bought another cow, which he killed, and he made the
calculation that if he sold the meat well he might gain as much as the
two cows were worth, and have the skin into the bargain. When therefore
he got to the town with the meat, a great troop of dogs were gathered
together in front of the gate, with a large greyhound at the head of
them, which jumped at the meat, snuffed at it, and barked, "Wow, wow,
wow." As there was no stopping him, the peasant said to him, "Yes,
yes, I know quite well that thou art saying, 'wow, wow, wow,' because
thou wantest some of the meat; but I should fare badly if I were to
give it to thee." The dog, however, answered nothing but "wow, wow."
"Wilt thou promise not to devour it all then, and wilt thou go bail for
thy companions?" "Wow, wow, wow," said the dog. "Well, if thou insistest
on it, I will leave it for thee; I know thee well, and know who is thy
master; but this I tell thee, I must have my money in three days or else
it will go ill with thee; thou must just bring it out to me." Thereupon
he unloaded the meat and turned back again, the dogs fell upon it and
loudly barked, "wow, wow."

The countryman, who heard them from afar, said to himself, "Hark, now
they all want some, but the big one is responsible to me for it."

When three days had passed, the countryman thought, "To-night my money
will be in my pocket," and was quite delighted. But no one would come
and pay it.  "There is no trusting any one now," said he; and at last
he lost patience, and went into the town to the butcher and demanded
his money. The butcher thought it was a joke, but the peasant said,
"Jesting apart, I will have my money! Did not the great dog bring you the
whole of the slaughtered cow three days ago?" Then the butcher grew angry,
snatched a broomstick and drove him out. "Wait a while," said the peasant,
"there is still some justice in the world!" and went to the royal palace
and begged for an audience. He was led before the King, who sat there with
his daughter, and asked him what injury he had suffered. "Alas!" said he,
"the frogs and the dogs have taken from me what is mine, and the butcher
has paid me for it with the stick," and he related at full length all
that had happened. Thereupon the King's daughter began to laugh heartily,
and the King said to him, "I cannot give you justice in this, but you
shall have my daughter to wife for it,---in her whole life she has never
yet laughed as she has just done at thee, and I have promised her to
him who could make her laugh. Thou mayst thank God for thy good fortune!"

"Oh," answered the peasant, "I will not have her, I have a wife already,
and she is one too many for me; when I go home, it is just as bad as
if I had a wife standing in every corner." Then the King grew angry,
and said, "Thou art a boor." "Ah, Lord King," replied the peasant,
"what can you expect from an ox, but beef?" "Stop," answered the King,
"thou shalt have another reward. Be off now, but come back in three days,
and then thou shalt have five hundred counted out in full."

When the peasant went out by the gate, the sentry said, "Thou hast made
the King's daughter laugh, so thou wilt certainly receive something
good." "Yes, that is what I think," answered the peasant; "five hundred
are to be counted out to me." "Hark thee," said the soldier, "give me
some of it. What canst thou do with all that money?" "As it is thou,"
said the peasant, "thou shalt have two hundred; present thyself in three
days' time before the King, and let it be paid to thee." A Jew, who was
standing by and had heard the conversation, ran after the peasant, held
him by the coat, and said, "Oh, wonder! what a luck-child thou art! I
will change it for thee, I will change it for thee into small coins,
what dost thou want with the great thalers?" "Jew," said the countryman,
"three hundred canst thou still have; give it to me at once in coin, in
three days from this, thou wilt be paid for it by the King." The Jew was
delighted with the profit, and brought the sum in bad groschen, three of
which were worth two good ones. After three days had passed, according
to the King's command, the peasant went before the King.  "Pull his coat
off," said the latter, "and he shall have his five hundred." "Ah!" said
the peasant, "they no longer belong to me; I presented two hundred of
them to the sentinel, and three hundred the Jew has changed for me,
so by right nothing at all belongs to me." In the meantime the soldier
and the Jew entered and claimed what they had gained from the peasant,
and they received the blows strictly counted out. The soldier bore it
patiently and knew already how it tasted, but the Jew said sorrowfully,
"Alas, alas, are these the heavy thalers?" The King could not help
laughing at the peasant, and as all his anger was gone, he said,
"As thou hast already lost thy reward before it fell to thy lot,
I will give thee something in the place of it. Go into my treasure
chamber and get some money for thyself, as much as thou wilt." The
peasant did not need to be told twice, and stuffed into his big pockets
whatsoever would go in. Afterwards he went to an inn and counted out his
money. The Jew had crept after him and heard how he muttered to himself,
"That rogue of a King has cheated me after all, why could he not have
given me the money himself, and then I should have known what I had?
How can I tell now if what I have had the luck to put in my pockets is
right or not?" "Good heavens!" said the Jew to himself, "that man is
speaking disrespectfully of our lord the King, I will run and inform,
and then I shall get a reward, and he will be punished as well."

When the King heard of the peasant's words he fell into a passion, and
commanded the Jew to go and bring the offender to him. The Jew ran to the
peasant, "You are to go at once to the lord King in the very clothes you
have on." "I know what's right better than that," answered the peasant,
"I shall have a new coat made first. Dost thou think that a man with so
much money in his pocket is to go there in his ragged old coat?" The
Jew, as he saw that the peasant would not stir without another coat,
and as he feared that if the King's anger cooled, he himself would lose
his reward, and the peasant his punishment, said, "I will out of pure
friendship lend thee a coat for the short time. What will people not do
for love!" The peasant was contented with this, put the Jew's coat on,
and went off with him.

The King reproached the countryman because of the evil speaking of which
the Jew had informed him. "Ah," said the peasant, "what a Jew says is
always false -- no true word ever comes out of his mouth! That rascal
there is capable of maintaining that I have his coat on."

"What is that?" shrieked the Jew. "Is the coat not mine? Have I not
lent it to thee out of pure friendship, in order that thou might appear
before the lord King?"  When the King heard that, he said, "The Jew
has assuredly deceived one or the other of us, either myself or the
peasant," and again he ordered something to be counted out to him in hard
thalers. The peasant, however, went home in the good coat, with the good
money in his pocket, and said to himself, "This time I have hit it!"


  8 The Wonderful Musician

There was once a wonderful musician, who went quite alone through a
forest and thought of all manner of things, and when nothing was left
for him to think about, he said to himself, "Time is beginning to pass
heavily with me here in the forest, I will fetch hither a good companion
for myself." Then he took his fiddle from his back, and played so that
it echoed through the trees. It was not long before a wolf came trotting
through the thicket towards him. "Ah, here is a wolf coming! I have no
desire for him!" said the musician; but the wolf came nearer and said
to him, "Ah, dear musician, how beautifully thou dost play. I should
like to learn that, too." "It is soon learnt," the musician replied,
"thou hast only to do all that I bid thee." "Oh, musician," said the wolf,
"I will obey thee as a scholar obeys his master." The musician bade him
follow, and when they had gone part of the way together, they came to an
old oak-tree which was hollow inside, and cleft in the middle. "Look,"
said the musician, "if thou wilt learn to fiddle, put thy fore paws into
this crevice." The wolf obeyed, but the musician quickly picked up a
stone and with one blow wedged his two paws so fast that he was forced
to stay there like a prisoner. "Stay there until I come back again,"
said the musician, and went his way.

After a while he again said to himself, "Time is beginning to pass heavily
with me here in the forest, I will fetch hither another companion,"
and took his fiddle and again played in the forest. It was not long
before a fox came creeping through the trees towards him. "Ah, there's
a fox coming!" said the musician. "I have no desire for him." The fox
came up to him and said, "Oh, dear musician, how beautifully thou dost
play! I should like to learn that too." "That is soon learnt," said
the musician. "Thou hast only to do everything that I bid thee." "Oh,
musician," then said the fox, "I will obey thee as a scholar obeys
his master."  "Follow me," said the musician; and when they had walked
a part of the way, they came to a footpath, with high bushes on both
sides of it. There the musician stood still, and from one side bent a
young hazel-bush down to the ground, and put his foot on the top of it,
then he bent down a young tree from the other side as well, and said,
"Now little fox, if thou wilt learn something, give me thy left front
paw." The fox obeyed, and the musician fastened his paw to the left
bough. "Little fox," said he, "now reach me thy right paw" and he tied it
to the right bough. When he had examined whether they were firm enough,
he let go, and the bushes sprang up again, and jerked up the little fox,
so that it hung struggling in the air. "Wait there till I come back
again," said the musician, and went his way.

Again he said to himself, "Time is beginning to pass heavily with me here
in the forest, I will fetch hither another companion," so he took his
fiddle, and the sound echoed through the forest. Then a little hare came
springing towards him.  "Why, a hare is coming," said the musician, "I do
not want him." "Ah, dear musician," said the hare, "how beautifully thou
dost fiddle; I too, should like to learn that." "That is soon learnt,"
said the musician, "thou hast only to do everything that I bid thee."

"Oh, musician," replied the little hare, "I will obey thee as a scholar
obeys his master." They went a part of the way together until they came
to an open space in the forest, where stood an aspen tree. The musician
tied a long string round the little hare's neck, the other end of which he
fastened to the tree. "Now briskly, little hare, run twenty times round
the tree!" cried the musician, and the little hare obeyed, and when it
had run round twenty times, it had twisted the string twenty times round
the trunk of the tree, and the little hare was caught, and let it pull
and tug as it liked, it only made the string cut into its tender neck.
"Wait there till I come back," said the musician, and went onwards.

The wolf, in the meantime, had pushed and pulled and bitten at the
stone, and had worked so long that he had set his feet at liberty and had
drawn them once more out of the cleft. Full of anger and rage he hurried
after the musician and wanted to tear him to pieces. When the fox saw
him running, he began to lament, and cried with all his might, "Brother
wolf, come to my help, the musician has betrayed me!" The wolf drew
down the little tree, bit the cord in two, and freed the fox, who went
with him to take revenge on the musician.  They found the tied-up hare,
whom likewise they delivered, and then they all sought the enemy together.

The musician had once more played his fiddle as he went on his way,
and this time he had been more fortunate. The sound reached the ears of
a poor wood-cutter, who instantly, whether he would or no, gave up his
work and came with his hatchet under his arm to listen to the music. "At
last comes the right companion," said the musician, "for I was seeking a
human being, and no wild beast." And he began and played so beautifully
and delightfully that the poor man stood there as if bewitched, and his
heart leaped with gladness. And as he thus stood, the wolf, the fox,
and the hare came up, and he saw well that they had some evil design. So
he raised his glittering axe and placed himself before the musician,
as if to say, "Whoso wishes to touch him let him beware, for he will
have to do with me!" Then the beasts were terrified and ran back into
the forest. The musician, however, played once more to the man out of
gratitude, and then went onwards.


  9 The Twelve Brothers

There were once on a time a king and a queen who lived happily together
and had twelve children, but they were all boys. Then said the King
to his wife, "If the thirteenth child which thou art about to bring
into the world, is a girl, the twelve boys shall die, in order that her
possessions may be great, and that the kingdom may fall to her alone." He
caused likewise twelve coffins to be made, which were already filled with
shavings, and in each lay the little pillow for the dead, and he had them
taken into a locked-up room, and then he gave the Queen the key of it,
and bade her not to speak of this to any one.

The mother, however, now sat and lamented all day long, until the youngest
son, who was always with her, and whom she had named Benjamin, from the
Bible, said to her, "Dear mother, why art thou so sad?"

"Dearest child," she answered, "I may not tell thee." But he let her
have no rest until she went and unlocked the room, and showed him the
twelve coffins ready filled with shavings. Then she said, "my dearest
Benjamin, thy father has had these coffins made for thee and for thy
eleven brothers, for if I bring a little girl into the world, you are
all to be killed and buried in them." And as she wept while she was
saying this, the son comforted her and said, "Weep not, dear mother,
we will save ourselves, and go hence." But she said, "Go forth into the
forest with thy eleven brothers, and let one sit constantly on the highest
tree which can be found, and keep watch, looking towards the tower here
in the castle. If I give birth to a little son, I will put up a white
flag, and then you may venture to come back, but if I bear a daughter,
I will hoist a red flag, and then fly hence as quickly as you are able,
and may the good God protect you. And every night I will rise up and
pray for you---in winter that you may be able to warm yourself at a fire,
and in summer that you may not faint away in the heat."

After she had blessed her sons therefore, they went forth into the
forest. They each kept watch in turn, and sat on the highest oak and
looked towards the tower. When eleven days had passed and the turn came
to Benjamin, he saw that a flag was being raised. It was, however, not
the white, but the blood-red flag which announced that they were all to
die. When the brothers heard that, they were very angry and said, "Are we
all to suffer death for the sake of a girl?  We swear that we will avenge
ourselves!-- wheresoever we find a girl, her red blood shall flow."

Thereupon they went deeper into the forest, and in the midst of it,
where it was the darkest, they found a little bewitched hut, which was
standing empty. Then said they, "Here we will dwell, and thou Benjamin,
who art the youngest and weakest, thou shalt stay at home and keep house,
we others will go out and get food." Then they went into the forest and
shot hares, wild deer, birds and pigeons, and whatsoever there was to
eat; this they took to Benjamin, who had to dress it for them in order
that they might appease their hunger. They lived together ten years in
the little hut, and the time did not appear long to them.

The little daughter which their mother the Queen had given birth to,
was now grown up; she was good of heart, and fair of face, and had a
golden star on her forehead. Once, when it was the great washing, she saw
twelve men's shirts among the things, and asked her mother, "To whom do
these twelve shirts belong, for they are far too small for father?" Then
the Queen answered with a heavy heart, "Dear child, these belong to
thy twelve brothers." Said the maiden, "Where are my twelve brothers,
I have never yet heard of them?" She replied, "God knows where they are,
they are wandering about the world." Then she took the maiden and opened
the chamber for her, and showed her the twelve coffins with the shavings,
and pillows for the head. "These coffins," said she, "were destined for
thy brothers, but they went away secretly before thou wert born," and
she related to her how everything had happened; then said the maiden,
"Dear mother, weep not, I will go and seek my brothers."

So she took the twelve shirts and went forth, and straight into the
great forest.  She walked the whole day, and in the evening she came to
the bewitched hut.  Then she entered it and found a young boy, who asked,
"From whence comest thou, and whither art thou bound?" and was astonished
that she was so beautiful, and wore royal garments, and had a star on
her forehead. And she answered, "I am a king's daughter, and am seeking
my twelve brothers, and I will walk as far as the sky is blue until I
find them." She likewise showed him the twelve shirts which belonged to
them. Then Benjamin saw that she was his sister, and said, "I am Benjamin,
thy youngest brother." And she began to weep for joy, and Benjamin wept
also, and they kissed and embraced each other with the greatest love. But
after this he said, "Dear sister, there is still one difficulty. We
have agreed that every maiden whom we meet shall die, because we have
been obliged to leave our kingdom on account of a girl." Then said she,
"I will willingly die, if by so doing I can deliver my twelve brothers."

"No," answered he, "thou shalt not die, seat thyself beneath this tub
until our eleven brothers come, and then I will soon come to an agreement
with them."

She did so, and when it was night the others came from hunting,
and their dinner was ready. And as they were sitting at table, and
eating, they asked, "What news is there?" Said Benjamin, "Don't you
know anything?" "No," they answered. He continued, "You have been in
the forest and I have stayed at home, and yet I know more than you
do." "Tell us then," they cried. He answered, "But promise me that the
first maiden who meets us shall not be killed." "Yes," they all cried,
"she shall have mercy, only do tell us."

Then said he, "Our sister is here," and he lifted up the tub, and the
King's daughter came forth in her royal garments with the golden star
on her forehead, and she was beautiful, delicate and fair. Then they
were all rejoiced, and fell on her neck, and kissed and loved her with
all their hearts.

Now she stayed at home with Benjamin and helped him with the work. The
eleven went into the forest and caught game, and deer, and birds,
and wood-pigeons that they might have food, and the little sister and
Benjamin took care to make it ready for them. She sought for the wood
for cooking and herbs for vegetables, and put the pans on the fire so
that the dinner was always ready when the eleven came. She likewise kept
order in the little house, and put beautifully white clean coverings
on the little beds, and the brothers were always contented and lived in
great harmony with her.

Once on a time the two at home had prepared a beautiful entertainment,
and when they were all together, they sat down and ate and drank and were
full of gladness. There was, however, a little garden belonging to the
bewitched house wherein stood twelve lily flowers, which are likewise
called students. She wished to give her brothers pleasure, and plucked
the twelve flowers, and thought she would present each brother with one
while at dinner. But at the self-same moment that she plucked the flowers
the twelve brothers were changed into twelve ravens, and flew away over
the forest, and the house and garden vanished likewise. And now the
poor maiden was alone in the wild forest, and when she looked around,
an old woman was standing near her who said, "My child, what hast thou
done? Why didst thou not leave the twelve white flowers growing? They
were thy brothers, who are now for evermore changed into ravens." The
maiden said, weeping, "Is there no way of delivering them?"

"No," said the woman, "there is but one in the whole world, and that
is so hard that thou wilt not deliver them by it, for thou must be dumb
for seven years, and mayst not speak or laugh, and if thou speakest one
single word, and only an hour of the seven years is wanting, all is in
vain, and thy brothers will be killed by the one word."

Then said the maiden in her heart, "I know with certainty that I shall
set my brothers free," and went and sought a high tree and seated herself
in it and span, and neither spoke nor laughed. Now it so happened that
a king was hunting in the forest, who had a great greyhound which ran to
the tree on which the maiden was sitting, and sprang about it, whining,
and barking at her. Then the King came by and saw the beautiful King's
daughter with the golden star on her brow, and was so charmed with her
beauty that he called to ask her if she would be his wife. She made no
answer, but nodded a little with her head. So he climbed up the tree
himself, carried her down, placed her on his horse, and bore her home.
Then the wedding was solemnized with great magnificence and rejoicing,
but the bride neither spoke nor smiled. When they had lived happily
together for a few years, the King's mother, who was a wicked woman,
began to slander the young Queen, and said to the King, "This is a
common beggar girl whom thou hast brought back with thee. Who knows
what impious tricks she practises secretly!  Even if she be dumb, and
not able to speak, she still might laugh for once; but those who do not
laugh have bad consciences." At first the King would not believe it, but
the old woman urged this so long, and accused her of so many evil things,
that at last the King let himself be persuaded and sentenced her to death.

And now a great fire was lighted in the courtyard in which she was to be
burnt, and the King stood above at the window and looked on with tearful
eyes, because he still loved her so much. And when she was bound fast to
the stake, and the fire was licking at her clothes with its red tongue,
the last instant of the seven years expired. Then a whirring sound
was heard in the air, and twelve ravens came flying towards the place,
and sank downwards, and when they touched the earth they were her twelve
brothers, whom she had delivered. They tore the fire asunder, extinguished
the flames, set their dear sister free, and kissed and embraced her. And
now as she dared to open her mouth and speak, she told the King why she
had been dumb, and had never laughed. The King rejoiced when he heard that
she was innocent, and they all lived in great unity until their death. The
wicked step-mother was taken before the judge, and put into a barrel
filled with boiling oil and venomous snakes, and died an evil death.



10 The Pack of Ragamuffins

The cock once said to the hen, "It is now the time when our nuts are
ripe, so let us go to the hill together and for once eat our fill
before the squirrel takes them all away." "Yes," replied the hen,
"come, we will have some pleasure together."  Then they went away to
the hill, and on it was a bright day they stayed till evening. Now I
do not know whether it was that they had eaten till they were too fat,
or whether they had become proud, but they would not go home on foot,
and the cock had to build a little carriage of nut-shells. When it
was ready, the little hen seated herself in it and said to the cock,
"Thou canst just harness thyself to it." "I like that!" said the cock,
"I would rather go home on foot than let myself be harnessed to it; no,
that is not our bargain. I do not mind being coachman and sitting on
the box, but drag it myself I will not."

As they were thus disputing, a duck quacked to them, "You thieving folks,
who bade you go to my nut-hill? Well, you shall suffer for it!" and ran
with open beak at the cock. But the cock also was not idle, and fell
boldly on the duck, and at last wounded her so with his spurs that she
also begged for mercy, and willingly let herself be harnessed to the
carriage as a punishment. The little cock now seated himself on the box
and was coachman, and thereupon they went off in a gallop, with "Duck,
go as fast as thou canst." When they had driven a part of the way they
met two foot-passengers, a pin and a needle. They cried, "Stop! stop!"
and said that it would soon be as dark as pitch, and then they could
not go a step further, and that it was so dirty on the road, and asked
if they could not get into the carriage for a while. They had been at
the tailor's public-house by the gate, and had stayed too long over
the beer. As they were thin people, who did not take up much room, the
cock let them both get in, but they had to promise him and his little
hen not to step on their feet. Late in the evening they came to an inn,
and as they did not like to go further by night, and as the duck also was
not strong on her feet, and fell from one side to the other, they went
in. The host at first made many objections, his house was already full,
besides he thought they could not be very distinguished persons; but at
last, as they made pleasant speeches, and told him that he should have the
egg which the little hen has laid on the way, and should likewise keep
the duck, which laid one every day, he at length said that they might
stay the night. And now they had themselves well served, and feasted
and rioted. Early in the morning, when day was breaking, and every one
was asleep, the cock awoke the hen, brought the egg, pecked it open,
and they ate it together, but they threw the shell on the hearth. Then
they went to the needle which was still asleep, took it by the head
and stuck it into the cushion of the landlord's chair, and put the pin
in his towel, and at the last without more ado they flew away over the
heath. The duck who liked to sleep in the open air and had stayed in
the yard, heard them going away, made herself merry and found a stream,
down which she swam, which was a much quicker way of travelling than
being harnessed to a carriage. The host did not get out of bed for two
hours after this; he washed himself and wanted to dry himself, then
the pin went over his face and made a red streak from one ear to the
other. After this he went into the kitchen and wanted to light a pipe,
but when he came to the hearth the egg-shell darted into his eyes. "This
morning everything attacks my head," said he, and angrily sat down
on his grandfather's chair, but he quickly started up again and cried,
"Woe is me," for the needle had pricked him still worse than the pin,
and not in the head. Now he was thoroughly angry, and suspected the
guests who had come so late the night before, and when he went and
looked about for them, they were gone. Then he made a vow to take no
more ragamuffins into his house, for they consume much, pay for nothing,
and play mischievous tricks into the bargain by way of gratitude.



11 Little Brother and Little Sister

Little brother took his little sister by the hand and said, "Since our
mother died we have had no happiness; our step-mother beats us every day,
and if we come near her she kicks us away with her foot. Our meals are
the hard crusts of bread that are left over; and the little dog under
the table is better off, for she often throws it a nice bit. May Heaven
pity us. If our mother only knew! Come, we will go forth together into
the wide world."

They walked the whole day over meadows, fields, and stony places;
and when it rained the little sister said, "Heaven and our hearts are
weeping together." In the evening they came to a large forest, and they
were so weary with sorrow and hunger and the long walk, that they lay
down in a hollow tree and fell asleep.

The next day when they awoke, the sun was already high in the sky,
and shone down hot into the tree. Then the brother said, "Sister, I am
thirsty; if I knew of a little brook I would go and just take a drink;
I think I hear one running." The brother got up and took the little
sister by the hand, and they set off to find the brook.

But the wicked step-mother was a witch, and had seen how the two children
had gone away, and had crept after them privily, as witches do creep,
and had bewitched all the brooks in the forest.

Now when they found a little brook leaping brightly over the stones,
the brother was going to drink out of it, but the sister heard how it
said as it ran, "Who drinks of me will be a tiger; who drinks of me will
be a tiger." Then the sister cried, "Pray, dear brother, do not drink,
or you will become a wild beast, and tear me to pieces." The brother
did not drink, although he was so thirsty, but said, "I will wait for
the next spring."

When they came to the next brook the sister heard this also say, "Who
drinks of me will be a wolf; who drinks of me will be a wolf." Then
the sister cried out, "Pray, dear brother, do not drink, or you will
become a wolf, and devour me."  The brother did not drink, and said,
"I will wait until we come to the next spring, but then I must drink,
say what you like; for my thirst is too great."

And when they came to the third brook the sister heard how it said as
it ran, "Who drinks of me will be a roebuck; who drinks of me will be a
roebuck." The sister said, "Oh, I pray you, dear brother, do not drink,
or you will become a roebuck, and run away from me." But the brother
had knelt down at once by the brook, and had bent down and drunk some
of the water, and as soon as the first drops touched his lips he lay
there a young roebuck.

And now the sister wept over her poor bewitched brother, and the little
roe wept also, and sat sorrowfully near to her. But at last the girl said,
"Be quiet, dear little roe, I will never, never leave you."

Then she untied her golden garter and put it round the roebuck's neck,
and she plucked rushes and wove them into a soft cord. With this she
tied the little beast and led it on, and she walked deeper and deeper
into the forest.

And when they had gone a very long way they came at last to a little
house, and the girl looked in; and as it was empty, she thought, "We
can stay here and live."  Then she sought for leaves and moss to make a
soft bed for the roe; and every morning she went out and gathered roots
and berries and nuts for herself, and brought tender grass for the roe,
who ate out of her hand, and was content and played round about her. In
the evening, when the sister was tired, and had said her prayer, she
laid her head upon the roebuck's back: that was her pillow, and she
slept softly on it. And if only the brother had had his human form it
would have been a delightful life.

For some time they were alone like this in the wilderness. But it happened
that the King of the country held a great hunt in the forest. Then
the blasts of the horns, the barking of dogs, and the merry shouts
of the huntsmen rang through the trees, and the roebuck heard all,
and was only too anxious to be there. "Oh," said he, to his sister,
"let me be off to the hunt, I cannot bear it any longer;" and he begged
so much that at last she agreed. "But," said she to him, "come back to
me in the evening; I must shut my door for fear of the rough huntsmen,
so knock and say, 'My little sister, let me in!' that I may know you;
and if you do not say that, I shall not open the door." Then the young
roebuck sprang away; so happy was he and so merry in the open air.

The King and the huntsmen saw the pretty creature, and started after him,
but they could not catch him, and when they thought that they surely had
him, away he sprang through the bushes and could not be seen. When it
was dark he ran to the cottage, knocked, and said, "My little sister,
let me in." Then the door was opened for him, and he jumped in, and
rested himself the whole night through upon his soft bed.

The next day the hunt went on afresh, and when the roebuck again heard
the bugle-horn, and the ho! ho! of the huntsmen, he had no peace, but
said, "Sister, let me out, I must be off." His sister opened the door
for him, and said, "But you must be here again in the evening and say
your pass-word."

When the King and his huntsmen again saw the young roebuck with the
golden collar, they all chased him, but he was too quick and nimble for
them. This went on for the whole day, but at last by the evening the
huntsmen had surrounded him, and one of them wounded him a little in the
foot, so that he limped and ran slowly. Then a hunter crept after him to
the cottage and heard how he said, "My little sister, let me in," and saw
that the door was opened for him, and was shut again at once. The huntsman
took notice of it all, and went to the King and told him what he had
seen and heard. Then the King said, "To-morrow we will hunt once more."

The little sister, however, was dreadfully frightened when she saw that
her fawn was hurt. She washed the blood off him, laid herbs on the wound,
and said, "Go to your bed, dear roe, that you may get well again." But the
wound was so slight that the roebuck, next morning, did not feel it any
more. And when he again heard the sport outside, he said, "I cannot bear
it, I must be there; they shall not find it so easy to catch me." The
sister cried, and said, "This time they will kill you, and here am I
alone in the forest and forsaken by all the world. I will not let you
out." "Then you will have me die of grief," answered the roe; "when I
hear the bugle-horns I feel as if I must jump out of my skin." Then the
sister could not do otherwise, but opened the door for him with a heavy
heart, and the roebuck, full of health and joy, bounded into the forest.

When the King saw him, he said to his huntsmen, "Now chase him all day
long till night-fall, but take care that no one does him any harm."

As soon as the sun had set, the King said to the huntsman, "Now come
and show me the cottage in the wood;" and when he was at the door, he
knocked and called out, "Dear little sister, let me in." Then the door
opened, and the King walked in, and there stood a maiden more lovely
than any he had ever seen. The maiden was frightened when she saw,
not her little roe, but a man come in who wore a golden crown upon his
head. But the King looked kindly at her, stretched out his hand, and said,
"Will you go with me to my palace and be my dear wife?" "Yes, indeed,"
answered the maiden, "but the little roe must go with me, I cannot leave
him." The King said, "It shall stay with you as long as you live, and
shall want nothing." Just then he came running in, and the sister again
tied him with the cord of rushes, took it in her own hand, and went away
with the King from the cottage.

The King took the lovely maiden upon his horse and carried her to his
palace, where the wedding was held with great pomp. She was now the Queen,
and they lived for a long time happily together; the roebuck was tended
and cherished, and ran about in the palace-garden.

But the wicked step-mother, because of whom the children had gone out
into the world, thought all the time that the sister had been torn to
pieces by the wild beasts in the wood, and that the brother had been
shot for a roebuck by the huntsmen. Now when she heard that they were
so happy, and so well off, envy and hatred rose in her heart and left
her no peace, and she thought of nothing but how she could bring them
again to misfortune. Her own daughter, who was ugly as night, and had
only one eye, grumbled at her and said, "A Queen! that ought to have
been my luck." "Only be quiet," answered the old woman, and comforted
her by saying, "when the time comes I shall be ready."

As time went on, the Queen had a pretty little boy, and it happened
that the King was out hunting; so the old witch took the form of the
chamber-maid, went into the room where the Queen lay, and said to her,
"Come, the bath is ready; it will do you good, and give you fresh
strength; make haste before it gets cold."

The daughter also was close by; so they carried the weakly Queen into
the bath-room, and put her into the bath; then they shut the door and
ran away. But in the bath-room they had made a fire of such deadly heat
that the beautiful young Queen was soon suffocated.

When this was done the old woman took her daughter, put a nightcap on
her head, and laid her in bed in place of the Queen. She gave her too
the shape and the look of the Queen, only she could not make good the
lost eye. But in order that the King might not see it, she was to lie
on the side on which she had no eye.

In the evening when he came home and heard that he had a son he was
heartily glad, and was going to the bed of his dear wife to see how
she was. But the old woman quickly called out, "For your life leave the
curtains closed; the Queen ought not to see the light yet, and must have
rest." The King went away, and did not find out that a false Queen was
lying in the bed.

But at midnight, when all slept, the nurse, who was sitting in the
nursery by the cradle, and who was the only person awake, saw the door
open and the true Queen walk in. She took the child out of the cradle,
laid it on her arm, and suckled it. Then she shook up its pillow, laid the
child down again, and covered it with the little quilt. And she did not
forget the roebuck, but went into the corner where it lay, and stroked
its back. Then she went quite silently out of the door again. The next
morning the nurse asked the guards whether anyone had come into the
palace during the night, but they answered, "No, we have seen no one."

She came thus many nights and never spoke a word: the nurse always saw
her, but she did not dare to tell anyone about it.

When some time had passed in this manner, the Queen began to speak in
the night, and said---


 "How fares my child, how fares my roe?
 Twice shall I come, then never more."

The nurse did not answer, but when the Queen had gone again, went
to the King and told him all. The King said, "Ah, heavens! what is
this? To-morrow night I will watch by the child." In the evening he went
into the nursery, and at midnight the Queen again appeared and said---


 "How fares my child, how fares my roe?
 Once will I come, then never more."

And she nursed the child as she was wont to do before she disappeared. The
King dared not speak to her, but on the next night he watched again. Then
she said---


 "How fares my child, how fares my roe?
 This time I come, then never more."

Then the King could not restrain himself; he sprang towards her, and
said, "You can be none other than my dear wife." She answered, "Yes,
I am your dear wife," and at the same moment she received life again,
and by God's grace became fresh, rosy, and full of health.

Then she told the King the evil deed which the wicked witch and her
daughter had been guilty of towards her. The King ordered both to be led
before the judge, and judgment was delivered against them. The daughter
was taken into the forest where she was torn to pieces by wild beasts,
but the witch was cast into the fire and miserably burnt. And as soon as
she was burnt the roebuck changed his shape, and received his human form
again, so the sister and brother lived happily together all their lives.



12 Rapunzel

There were once a man and a woman who had long in vain wished for
a child.  At length the woman hoped that God was about to grant her
desire. These people had a little window at the back of their house
from which a splendid garden could be seen, which was full of the most
beautiful flowers and herbs. It was, however, surrounded by a high wall,
and no one dared to go into it because it belonged to an enchantress,
who had great power and was dreaded by all the world. One day the
woman was standing by this window and looking down into the garden,
when she saw a bed which was planted with the most beautiful rampion
(rapunzel), and it looked so fresh and green that she longed for it,
and had the greatest desire to eat some. This desire increased every day,
and as she knew that she could not get any of it, she quite pined away,
and looked pale and miserable. Then her husband was alarmed, and asked,
"What aileth thee, dear wife?" "Ah," she replied, "if I can't get some
of the rampion, which is in the garden behind our house, to eat, I shall
die." The man, who loved her, thought, "Sooner than let thy wife die,
bring her some of the rampion thyself, let it cost thee what it will." In
the twilight of the evening, he clambered down over the wall into the
garden of the enchantress, hastily clutched a handful of rampion, and
took it to his wife. She at once made herself a salad of it, and ate it
with much relish. She, however, liked it so much---so very much, that the
next day she longed for it three times as much as before. If he was to
have any rest, her husband must once more descend into the garden. In the
gloom of evening, therefore, he let himself down again; but when he had
clambered down the wall he was terribly afraid, for he saw the enchantress
standing before him. "How canst thou dare," said she with angry look,
"to descend into my garden and steal my rampion like a thief? Thou shalt
suffer for it!" "Ah," answered he, "let mercy take the place of justice, I
only made up my mind to do it out of necessity. My wife saw your rampion
from the window, and felt such a longing for it that she would have
died if she had not got some to eat." Then the enchantress allowed her
anger to be softened, and said to him, "If the case be as thou sayest,
I will allow thee to take away with thee as much rampion as thou wilt,
only I make one condition, thou must give me the child which thy wife
will bring into the world; it shall be well treated, and I will care
for it like a mother." The man in his terror consented to everything,
and when the woman was brought to bed, the enchantress appeared at once,
gave the child the name of Rapunzel, and took it away with her.

Rapunzel grew into the most beautiful child beneath the sun. When she
was twelve years old, the enchantress shut her into a tower, which lay
in a forest, and had neither stairs nor door, but quite at the top was a
little window. When the enchantress wanted to go in, she placed herself
beneath it and cried,


 "Rapunzel, Rapunzel,
 Let down thy hair to me."

Rapunzel had magnificent long hair, fine as spun gold, and when she
heard the voice of the enchantress she unfastened her braided tresses,
wound them round one of the hooks of the window above, and then the hair
fell twenty ells down, and the enchantress climbed up by it.

After a year or two, it came to pass that the King's son rode through
the forest and went by the tower. Then he heard a song, which was so
charming that he stood still and listened. This was Rapunzel, who in
her solitude passed her time in letting her sweet voice resound. The
King's son wanted to climb up to her, and looked for the door of the
tower, but none was to be found. He rode home, but the singing had so
deeply touched his heart, that every day he went out into the forest
and listened to it. Once when he was thus standing behind a tree, he
saw that an enchantress came there, and he heard how she cried,


 "Rapunzel, Rapunzel,
 Let down thy hair."

Then Rapunzel let down the braids of her hair, and the enchantress climbed
up to her. "If that is the ladder by which one mounts, I will for once
try my fortune," said he, and the next day when it began to grow dark,
he went to the tower and cried,


 "Rapunzel, Rapunzel,
 Let down thy hair."

Immediately the hair fell down and the King's son climbed up.

At first Rapunzel was terribly frightened when a man such as her eyes
had never yet beheld, came to her; but the King's son began to talk to
her quite like a friend, and told her that his heart had been so stirred
that it had let him have no rest, and he had been forced to see her. Then
Rapunzel lost her fear, and when he asked her if she would take him for
her husband, and she saw that he was young and handsome, she thought,
"He will love me more than old Dame Gothel does;" and she said yes,
and laid her hand in his. She said, "I will willingly go away with thee,
but I do not know how to get down. Bring with thee a skein of silk every
time that thou comest, and I will weave a ladder with it, and when that
is ready I will descend, and thou wilt take me on thy horse." They agreed
that until that time he should come to her every evening, for the old
woman came by day. The enchantress remarked nothing of this, until once
Rapunzel said to her, "Tell me, Dame Gothel, how it happens that you are
so much heavier for me to draw up than the young King's son---he is with
me in a moment." "Ah! thou wicked child," cried the enchantress "What do
I hear thee say! I thought I had separated thee from all the world, and
yet thou hast deceived me." In her anger she clutched Rapunzel's beautiful
tresses, wrapped them twice round her left hand, seized a pair of scissors
with the right, and snip, snap, they were cut off, and the lovely braids
lay on the ground. And she was so pitiless that she took poor Rapunzel
into a desert where she had to live in great grief and misery.

On the same day, however, that she cast out Rapunzel, the enchantress
in the evening fastened the braids of hair which she had cut off, to
the hook of the window, and when the King's son came and cried,


 "Rapunzel, Rapunzel,
 Let down thy hair,"

she let the hair down. The King's son ascended, but he did not find
his dearest Rapunzel above, but the enchantress, who gazed at him with
wicked and venomous looks. "Aha!" she cried mockingly, "Thou wouldst fetch
thy dearest, but the beautiful bird sits no longer singing in the nest;
the cat has got it, and will scratch out thy eyes as well. Rapunzel is
lost to thee; thou wilt never see her more." The King's son was beside
himself with pain, and in his despair he leapt down from the tower. He
escaped with his life, but the thorns into which he fell, pierced his
eyes. Then he wandered quite blind about the forest, ate nothing but
roots and berries, and did nothing but lament and weep over the loss of
his dearest wife. Thus he roamed about in misery for some years, and at
length came to the desert where Rapunzel, with the twins to which she had
given birth, a boy and a girl, lived in wretchedness. He heard a voice,
and it seemed so familiar to him that he went towards it, and when he
approached, Rapunzel knew him and fell on his neck and wept. Two of her
tears wetted his eyes and they grew clear again, and he could see with
them as before. He led her to his kingdom where he was joyfully received,
and they lived for a long time afterwards, happy and contented.



13 The Three Little Men in the Wood

There was once a man whose wife died, and a woman whose husband died,
and the man had a daughter, and the woman also had a daughter. The
girls were acquainted with each other, and went out walking together,
and afterwards came to the woman in her house. Then said she to the man's
daughter, "Listen, tell thy father that I would like to marry him, and
then thou shalt wash thyself in milk every morning, and drink wine, but
my own daughter shall wash herself in water and drink water." The girl
went home, and told her father what the woman had said. The man said,
"What shall I do? Marriage is a joy and also a torment." At length as he
could come to no decision, he pulled off his boot, and said, "Take this
boot, it has a hole in the sole of it. Go with it up to the loft, hang
it on the big nail, and then pour water into it. If it hold the water,
then I will again take a wife, but if it run through, I will not." The
girl did as she was ordered, but the water drew the hole together,
and the boot became full to the top. She informed her father how it had
turned out. Then he himself went up, and when he saw that she was right,
he went to the widow and wooed her, and the wedding was celebrated.

The next morning, when the two girls got up, there stood before the
man's daughter milk for her to wash in and wine for her to drink, but
before the woman's daughter stood water to wash herself with and water
for drinking. On the second morning, stood water for washing and water
for drinking before the man's daughter as well as before the woman's
daughter. And on the third morning stood water for washing and water for
drinking before the man's daughter, and milk for washing and wine for
drinking, before the woman's daughter, and so it continued. The woman
became bitterly unkind to her step-daughter, and day by day did her best
to treat her still worse. She was also envious because her step-daughter
was beautiful and lovable, and her own daughter ugly and repulsive.

Once, in winter, when everything was frozen as hard as a stone, and
hill and vale lay covered with snow, the woman made a frock of paper,
called her step-daughter, and said, "Here, put on this dress and go
out into the wood, and fetch me a little basketful of strawberries,---I
have a fancy for some." "Good heavens!" said the girl, "no strawberries
grow in winter! The ground is frozen, and besides the snow has covered
everything. And why am I to go in this paper frock? It is so cold outside
that one's very breath freezes! The wind will blow through the frock,
and the thorns will tear it off my body." "Wilt thou contradict me
again?" said the stepmother, "See that thou goest, and do not show
thy face again until thou hast the basketful of strawberries!" Then
she gave her a little piece of hard bread, and said, "This will last
thee the day," and thought, "Thou wilt die of cold and hunger outside,
and wilt never be seen again by me."

Then the maiden was obedient, and put on the paper frock, and went
out with the basket. Far and wide there was nothing but snow, and not
a green blade to be seen. When she got into the wood she saw a small
house out of which peeped three dwarfs. She wished them good day, and
knocked modestly at the door. They cried, "Come in," and she entered
the room and seated herself on the bench by the stove, where she began
to warm herself and eat her breakfast. The elves said, "Give us, too,
some of it." "Willingly," she said, and divided her bit of bread in
two and gave them the half. They asked, "What dost thou here in the
forest in the winter time, in thy thin dress?" "Ah," she answered,
"I am to look for a basketful of strawberries, and am not to go home
until I can take them with me." When she had eaten her bread, they
gave her a broom and said, "Sweep away the snow at the back door with
it." But when she was outside, the three little men said to each other,
"What shall we give her as she is so good, and has shared her bread
with us?" Then said the first, "My gift is, that she shall every day
grow more beautiful." The second said, "My gift is, that gold pieces
shall fall out of her mouth every time she speaks." The third said,
"My gift is, that a king shall come and take her to wife."

The girl, however, did as the little men had bidden her, swept away the
snow behind the little house with the broom, and what did she find but
real ripe strawberries, which came up quite dark-red out of the snow! In
her joy she hastily gathered her basket full, thanked the little men,
shook hands with each of them, and ran home to take her step-mother what
she had longed for so much.  When she went in and said good-evening,
a piece of gold at once fell from her mouth. Thereupon she related
what had happened to her in the wood, but with every word she spoke,
gold pieces fell from her mouth, until very soon the whole room was
covered with them. "Now look at her arrogance," cried the step-sister,
"to throw about gold in that way!" but she was secretly envious of it,
and wanted to go into the forest also to seek strawberries. The mother
said, "No, my dear little daughter, it is too cold, thou mightest die
of cold." However, as her daughter let her have no peace, the mother at
last yielded, made her a magnificent dress of fur, which she was obliged
to put on, and gave her bread-and-butter and cake with her.

The girl went into the forest and straight up to the little house. The
three little elves peeped out again, but she did not greet them, and
without looking round at them and without speaking to them, she went
awkwardly into the room, seated herself by the stove, and began to eat
her bread-and-butter and cake. "Give us some of it," cried the little
men; but she replied, "There is not enough for myself, so how can I
give it away to other people?" When she had done eating, they said,
"There is a broom for thee, sweep all clean for us outside by the
back-door." "Humph! Sweep for yourselves," she answered, "I am not your
servant." When she saw that they were not going to give her anything,
she went out by the door. Then the little men said to each other, "What
shall we give her as she is so naughty, and has a wicked envious heart,
that will never let her do a good turn to any one?" The first said,
"I grant that she may grow uglier every day." The second said, "I grant
that at every word she says, a toad shall spring out of her mouth." The
third said, "I grant that she may die a miserable death."  The maiden
looked for strawberries outside, but as she found none, she went angrily
home. And when she opened her mouth, and was about to tell her mother
what had happened to her in the wood, with every word she said, a toad
sprang out of her mouth, so that every one was seized with horror of her.

Then the step-mother was still more enraged, and thought of nothing but
how to do every possible injury to the man's daughter, whose beauty,
however, grew daily greater. At length she took a cauldron, set it on
the fire, and boiled yarn in it. When it was boiled, she flung it on
the poor girl's shoulder, and gave her an axe in order that she might
go on the frozen river, cut a hole in the ice, and rinse the yarn. She
was obedient, went thither and cut a hole in the ice; and while she was
in the midst of her cutting, a splendid carriage came driving up, in
which sat the King. The carriage stopped, and the King asked,"My child,
who are thou, and what art thou doing here?" "I am a poor girl, and I am
rinsing yarn." Then the King felt compassion, and when he saw that she
was so very beautiful, he said to her, "Wilt thou go away with me?" "Ah,
yes, with all my heart," she answered, for she was glad to get away from
the mother and sister.

So she got into the carriage and drove away with the King, and when
they arrived at his palace, the wedding was celebrated with great pomp,
as the little men had granted to the maiden. When a year was over, the
young Queen bore a son, and as the step-mother had heard of her great
good-fortune, she came with her daughter to the palace and pretended
that she wanted to pay her a visit.  Once, however, when the King had
gone out, and no one else was present, the wicked woman seized the
Queen by the head, and her daughter seized her by the feet, and they
lifted her out of the bed, and threw her out of the window into the
stream which flowed by. Then the ugly daughter laid herself in the
bed, and the old woman covered her up over her head. When the King
came home again and wanted to speak to his wife, the old woman cried,
"Hush, hush, that can't be now, she is lying in a violent perspiration;
you must let her rest to-day." The King suspected no evil, and did not
come back again till next morning; and as he talked with his wife and
she answered him, with every word a toad leaped out, whereas formerly
a piece of gold had fallen out. Then he asked what that could be, but
the old woman said that she had got that from the violent perspiration,
and would soon lose it again. During the night, however, the scullion
saw a duck come swimming up the gutter, and it said,


 "King, what art thou doing now?
 Sleepest thou, or wakest thou?"

And as he returned no answer, it said,


 "And my guests, What may they do?"

The scullion said,


 "They are sleeping soundly, too."

Then it asked again,


 "What does little baby mine?"

He answered,


 "Sleepeth in her cradle fine."

Then she went upstairs in the form of the Queen, nursed the baby, shook
up its little bed, covered it over, and then swam away again down the
gutter in the shape of a duck. She came thus for two nights; on the third,
she said to the scullion, "Go and tell the King to take his sword and
swing it three times over me on the threshold." Then the scullion ran
and told this to the King, who came with his sword and swung it thrice
over the spirit, and at the third time, his wife stood before him strong,
living, and healthy as she had been before. Thereupon the King was full
of great joy, but he kept the Queen hidden in a chamber until the Sunday,
when the baby was to be christened. And when it was christened he said,
"What does a person deserve who drags another out of bed and throws him in
the water?" "The wretch deserves nothing better," answered the old woman,
"than to be taken and put in a barrel stuck full of nails, and rolled
down hill into the water." "Then," said the King, "Thou hast pronounced
thine own sentence;" and he ordered such a barrel to be brought, and
the old woman to be put into it with her daughter, and then the top was
hammered on, and the barrel rolled down hill until it went into the river.



14 The Three Spinners

There was once a girl who was idle and would not spin, and let her mother
say what she would, she could not bring her to it. At last the mother
was once so overcome with anger and impatience, that she beat her, on
which the girl began to weep loudly. Now at this very moment the Queen
drove by, and when she heard the weeping she stopped her carriage, went
into the house and asked the mother why she was beating her daughter
so that the cries could be heard out on the road? Then the woman was
ashamed to reveal the laziness of her daughter and said, "I cannot get
her to leave off spinning. She insists on spinning for ever and ever,
and I am poor, and cannot procure the flax." Then answered the Queen,
"There is nothing that I like better to hear than spinning, and I am
never happier than when the wheels are humming. Let me have your daughter
with me in the palace. I have flax enough, and there she shall spin as
much as she likes."  The mother was heartily satisfied with this, and
the Queen took the girl with her.  When they had arrived at the palace,
she led her up into three rooms which were filled from the bottom to the
top with the finest flax. "Now spin me this flax," said she, "and when
thou hast done it, thou shalt have my eldest son for a husband, even if
thou art poor. I care not for that, thy indefatigable industry is dowry
enough." The girl was secretly terrified, for she could not have spun
the flax, no, not if she had lived till she was three hundred years old,
and had sat at it every day from morning till night. When therefore she
was alone, she began to weep, and sat thus for three days without moving
a finger. On the third day came the Queen, and when she saw that nothing
had been spun yet, she was surprised; but the girl excused herself by
saying that she had not been able to begin because of her great distress
at leaving her mother's house. The queen was satisfied with this, but
said when she was going away, "To-morrow thou must begin to work."

When the girl was alone again, she did not know what to do, and in her
distress went to the window. Then she saw three women coming towards
her, the first of whom had a broad flat foot, the second had such a
great underlip that it hung down over her chin, and the third had a
broad thumb. They remained standing before the window, looked up, and
asked the girl what was amiss with her? She complained of her trouble,
and then they offered her their help and said, "If thou wilt invite
us to the wedding, not be ashamed of us, and wilt call us thine aunts,
and likewise wilt place us at thy table, we will spin up the flax for
thee, and that in a very short time." "With all my heart," she replied,
"do but come in and begin the work at once." Then she let in the three
strange women, and cleared a place in the first room, where they seated
themselves and began their spinning. The one drew the thread and trod the
wheel, the other wetted the thread, the third twisted it, and struck the
table with her finger, and as often as she struck it, a skein of thread
fell to the ground that was spun in the finest manner possible. The girl
concealed the three spinners from the Queen, and showed her whenever
she came the great quantity of spun thread, until the latter could not
praise her enough. When the first room was empty she went to the second,
and at last to the third, and that too was quickly cleared. Then the
three women took leave and said to the girl, "Do not forget what thou
hast promised us,---it will make thy fortune."

When the maiden showed the Queen the empty rooms, and the great heap
of yarn, she gave orders for the wedding, and the bridegroom rejoiced
that he was to have such a clever and industrious wife, and praised her
mightily. "I have three aunts," said the girl, "and as they have been very
kind to me, I should not like to forget them in my good fortune; allow
me to invite them to the wedding, and let them sit with us at table." The
Queen and the bridegroom said, "Why should we not allow that?" Therefore
when the feast began, the three women entered in strange apparel, and
the bride said, "Welcome, dear aunts." "Ah," said the bridegroom, "how
comest thou by these odious friends?" Thereupon he went to the one with
the broad flat foot, and said, "How do you come by such a broad foot?" "By
treading," she answered, "by treading." Then the bridegroom went to the
second, and said, "How do you come by your falling lip?" "By licking,"
she answered, "by licking." Then he asked the third, "How do you come by
your broad thumb?" "By twisting the thread," she answered, "by twisting
the thread."  On this the King's son was alarmed and said, "Neither now
nor ever shall my beautiful bride touch a spinning-wheel." And thus she
got rid of the hateful flax-spinning.



15 Hansel and Grethel

Hard by a great forest dwelt a poor wood-cutter with his wife and his
two children. The boy was called Hansel and the girl Grethel. He had
little to bite and to break, and once when great scarcity fell on the
land, he could no longer procure daily bread. Now when he thought over
this by night in his bed, and tossed about in his anxiety, he groaned
and said to his wife, "What is to become of us? How are we to feed our
poor children, when we no longer have anything even for ourselves?" "I'll
tell you what, husband," answered the woman, "Early to-morrow morning we
will take the children out into the forest to where it is the thickest,
there we will light a fire for them, and give each of them one piece of
bread more, and then we will go to our work and leave them alone. They
will not find the way home again, and we shall be rid of them." "No,
wife," said the man, "I will not do that; how can I bear to leave my
children alone in the forest?---the wild animals would soon come and
tear them to pieces." "O, thou fool!" said she, "Then we must all four
die of hunger, thou mayest as well plane the planks for our coffins,"
and she left him no peace until he consented. "But I feel very sorry
for the poor children, all the same," said the man.

The two children had also not been able to sleep for hunger, and had
heard what their step-mother had said to their father. Grethel wept
bitter tears, and said to Hansel, "Now all is over with us." "Be quiet,
Grethel," said Hansel, "do not distress thyself, I will soon find a way
to help us." And when the old folks had fallen asleep, he got up, put
on his little coat, opened the door below, and crept outside. The moon
shone brightly, and the white pebbles which lay in front of the house
glittered like real silver pennies. Hansel stooped and put as many of
them in the little pocket of his coat as he could possibly get in. Then
he went back and said to Grethel, "Be comforted, dear little sister,
and sleep in peace, God will not forsake us," and he lay down again in
his bed. When day dawned, but before the sun had risen, the woman came
and awoke the two children, saying "Get up, you sluggards! we are going
into the forest to fetch wood." She gave each a little piece of bread,
and said, "There is something for your dinner, but do not eat it up
before then, for you will get nothing else." Grethel 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. When they had walked a short
time, Hansel stood still and peeped back at the house, and did so again
and again. His father said, "Hansel, what art thou looking at there and
staying behind for? Mind what thou art about, and do not forget how to
use thy legs." "Ah, father," said Hansel, "I am looking at my little
white cat, which is sitting up on the roof, and wants to say good-bye
to me." The wife said, "Fool, that is not thy little cat, that is the
morning sun which is shining on the chimneys." Hansel, however, had not
been looking back at the cat, but had been constantly throwing one of
the white pebble-stones out of his pocket on the road.

When they had reached the middle of the forest, the father said, "Now,
children, pile up some wood, and I will light a fire that you may not
be cold." Hansel and Grethel gathered brushwood together, as high as a
little hill. The brushwood was lighted, and when the flames were burning
very high, the woman said, "Now, children, lay yourselves down by the
fire and rest, we will go into the forest and cut some wood. When we
have done, we will come back and fetch you away."

Hansel and Grethel sat by the fire, and when noon came, each ate a
little piece of bread, and as they heard the strokes of the wood-axe
they believed that their father was near. It was not, however, the axe,
it was a branch which he had fastened to a withered tree which the wind
was blowing backwards and forwards. And as they had been sitting such a
long time, their eyes shut with fatigue, and they fell fast asleep. When
at last they awoke, it was already dark night. Grethel began to cry and
said, "How are we to get out of the forest now?"  But Hansel comforted
her and said, "Just wait a little, until the moon has risen, and then we
will soon find the way." And when the full moon had risen, Hansel took
his little sister by the hand, and followed the pebbles which shone like
newly-coined silver pieces, and showed them the way.

They walked the whole night long, and by break of day came once more
to their father's house. They knocked at the door, and when the woman
opened it and saw that it was Hansel and Grethel, she said, "You naughty
children, why have you slept so long in the forest?---we thought you
were never coming back at all!" The father, however, rejoiced, for it
had cut him to the heart to leave them behind alone.

Not long afterwards, there was once more great scarcity in all parts,
and the children heard their mother saying at night to their father,
"Everything is eaten again, we have one half loaf left, and after that
there is an end. The children must go, we will take them farther into
the wood, so that they will not find their way out again; there is no
other means of saving ourselves!" The man's heart was heavy, and he
thought "it would be better for thee to share the last mouthful with thy
children." The woman, however, would listen to nothing that he had to
say, but scolded and reproached him. He who says A must say B, likewise,
and as he had yielded the first time, he had to do so a second time also.

The children were, however, still awake and had heard the
conversation. When the old folks were asleep, Hansel again got up,
and wanted to go out and pick up pebbles as he had done before, but the
woman had locked the door, and Hansel could not get out. Nevertheless
he comforted his little sister, and said, "Do not cry, Grethel, go to
sleep quietly, the good God will help us."

Early in the morning came the woman, and took the children out of their
beds.  Their bit of bread was given to them, but it was still smaller than
the time before.  On the way into the forest Hansel crumbled his in his
pocket, and often stood still and threw a morsel on the ground. "Hansel,
why dost thou stop and look round?" said the father, "go on." "I am
looking back at my little pigeon which is sitting on the roof, and wants
to say good-bye to me," answered Hansel.  "Simpleton!" said the woman,
"that is not thy little pigeon, that is the morning sun that is shining
on the chimney." Hansel, however, little by little, threw all the crumbs
on the path.

The woman led the children still deeper into the forest, where they had
never in their lives been before. Then a great fire was again made, and
the mother said, "Just sit there, you children, and when you are tired you
may sleep a little; we are going into the forest to cut wood, and in the
evening when we are done, we will come and fetch you away." When it was
noon, Grethel shared her piece of bread with Hansel, who had scattered his
by the way. Then they fell asleep and evening came and went, but no one
came to the poor children. They did not awake until it was dark night,
and Hansel comforted his little sister and said, "Just wait, Grethel,
until the moon rises, and then we shall see the crumbs of bread which I
have strewn about, they will show us our way home again." When the moon
came they set out, but they found no crumbs, for the many thousands
of birds which fly about in the woods and fields had picked them all
up. Hansel said to Grethel, "We shall soon find the way," but they did
not find it. They walked the whole night and all the next day too from
morning till evening, but they did not get out of the forest, and were
very hungry, for they had nothing to eat but two or three berries,
which grew on the ground. And as they were so weary that their legs
would carry them no longer, they lay down beneath a tree and fell asleep.

It was now three mornings since they had left their father's house. They
began to walk again, but they always got deeper into the forest, and if
help did not come soon, they must die of hunger and weariness. When it
was mid-day, they saw a beautiful snow-white bird sitting on a bough,
which sang so delightfully that they stood still and listened to it. And
when it had finished its song, it spread its wings and flew away before
them, and they followed it until they reached a little house, on the
roof of which it alighted; and when they came quite up to little house
they saw that it was built of bread and covered with cakes, but that the
windows were of clear sugar. "We will set to work on that," said Hansel,
"and have a good meal. I will eat a bit of the roof, and thou, Grethel,
canst eat some of the window, it will taste sweet." Hansel reached up
above, and broke off a little of the roof to try how it tasted, and
Grethel leant against the window and nibbled at the panes. Then a soft
voice cried from the room,


 "Nibble, nibble, gnaw,
 Who is nibbling at my little house?"

The children answered,


 "The wind, the wind,
 The heaven-born wind,"

and went on eating without disturbing themselves. Hansel, who thought
the roof tasted very nice, tore down a great piece of it, and Grethel
pushed out the whole of one round window-pane, sat down, and enjoyed
herself with it. Suddenly the door opened, and a very, very old
woman, who supported herself on crutches, came creeping out. Hansel
and Grethel were so terribly frightened that they let fall what they
had in their hands. The old woman, however, nodded her head, and said,
"Oh, you dear children, who has brought you here? Do come in, and stay
with me. No harm shall happen to you." She took them both by the hand,
and led them into her little house. Then good food was set before them,
milk and pancakes, with sugar, apples, and nuts. Afterwards two pretty
little beds were covered with clean white linen, and Hansel and Grethel
lay down in them, and thought they were in heaven.

The old woman had only pretended to be so kind; she was in reality a
wicked witch, who lay in wait for children, and had only built the little
house of bread in order to entice them there. When a child fell into her
power, she killed it, cooked and ate it, and that was a feast day with
her. Witches have red eyes, and cannot see far, but they have a keen scent
like the beasts, and are aware when human beings draw near. When Hansel
and Grethel came into her neighborhood, she laughed maliciously, and
said mockingly, "I have them, they shall not escape me again!" Early in
the morning before the children were awake, she was already up, and when
she saw both of them sleeping and looking so pretty, with their plump red
cheeks, she muttered to herself, "That will be a dainty mouthful!" Then
she seized Hansel with her shrivelled hand, carried him into a little
stable, and shut him in with a grated door. He might scream as he liked,
that was of no use. Then she went to Grethel, shook her till she awoke,
and cried, "Get up, lazy thing, fetch some water, and cook something good
for thy brother, he is in the stable outside, and is to be made fat. When
he is fat, I will eat him." Grethel began to weep bitterly, but it was
all in vain, she was forced to do what the wicked witch ordered her.

And now the best food was cooked for poor Hansel, but Grethel got nothing
but crab-shells. Every morning the woman crept to the little stable,
and cried, "Hansel, stretch out thy finger that I may feel if thou wilt
soon be fat." Hansel, however, stretched out a little bone to her, and
the old woman, who had dim eyes, could not see it, and thought it was
Hansel's finger, and was astonished that there was no way of fattening
him. When four weeks had gone by, and Hansel still continued thin,
she was seized with impatience and would not wait any longer. "Hola,
Grethel," she cried to the girl, "be active, and bring some water.
Let Hansel be fat or lean, to-morrow I will kill him, and cook him." Ah,
how the poor little sister did lament when she had to fetch the water,
and how her tears did flow down over her cheeks! "Dear God, do help us,"
she cried. "If the wild beasts in the forest had but devoured us, we
should at any rate have died together." "Just keep thy noise to thyself,"
said the old woman, "all that won't help thee at all."

Early in the morning, Grethel had to go out and hang up the cauldron with
the water, and light the fire. "We will bake first," said the old woman,
"I have already heated the oven, and kneaded the dough." She pushed
poor Grethel out to the oven, from which flames of fire were already
darting. "Creep in," said the witch, "and see if it is properly heated,
so that we can shut the bread in." And when once Grethel was inside,
she intended to shut the oven and let her bake in it, and then she would
eat her, too. But Grethel saw what she had in her mind, and said, "I do
not know how I am to do it; how do you get in?" "Silly goose," said the
old woman, "The door is big enough; just look, I can get in myself!" and
she crept up and thrust her head into the oven. Then Grethel gave her a
push that drove her far into it, and shut the iron door, and fastened the
bolt. Oh! then she began to howl quite horribly, but Grethel ran away,
and the godless witch was miserably burnt to death.

Grethel, however, ran like lightning to Hansel, opened his little stable,
and cried, "Hansel, we are saved! The old witch is dead!" Then Hansel
sprang out like a bird from its cage when the door is opened for it. How
they did rejoice and embrace each other, and dance about and kiss each
other! And as they had no longer any need to fear her, they went into
the witch's house, and in every corner there stood chests full of pearls
and jewels. "These are far better than pebbles!"  said Hansel, and thrust
into his pockets whatever could be got in, and Grethel said, "I, too, will
take something home with me," and filled her pinafore full. "But now we
will go away." said Hansel, "that we may get out of the witch's forest."

When they had walked for two hours, they came to a great piece of
water. "We cannot get over," said Hansel, "I see no foot-plank, and no
bridge." "And no boat crosses either," answered Grethel, "but a white duck
is swimming there; if I ask her, she will help us over." Then she cried,


 "Little duck, little duck, dost thou see,
 Hansel and Grethel are waiting for thee?
 There's never a plank, or bridge in sight,

 Take us across on thy back so white."

The duck came to them, and Hansel seated himself on its back, and told
his sister to sit by him. "No," replied Grethel, "that will be too heavy
for the little duck; she shall take us across, one after the other." The
good little duck did so, and when they were once safely across and had
walked for a short time, the forest seemed to be more and more familiar
to them, and at length they saw from afar their father's house. Then
they began to run, rushed into the parlour, and threw themselves into
their father's arms. The man had not known one happy hour since he
had left the children in the forest; the woman, however, was dead.
Grethel emptied her pinafore until pearls and precious stones ran about
the room, and Hansel threw one handful after another out of his pocket
to add to them. Then all anxiety was at an end, and they lived together
in perfect happiness. My tale is done, there runs a mouse, whosoever
catches it, may make himself a big fur cap out of it.



16 The Three Snake-Leaves

There was once on a time a poor man, who could no longer support his
only son. Then said the son, "Dear father, things go so badly with us
that I am a burden to you. I would rather go away and see how I can earn
my bread." So the father gave him his blessing, and with great sorrow
took leave of him. At this time the King of a mighty empire was at war,
and the youth took service with him, and with him went out to fight. And
when he came before the enemy, there was a battle, and great danger,
and it rained shot until his comrades fell on all sides, and when the
leader also was killed, those left were about to take flight, but the
youth stepped forth, spoke boldly to them, and cried, "We will not let
our fatherland be ruined!" Then the others followed him, and he pressed on
and conquered the enemy. When the King heard that he owed the victory to
him alone, he raised him above all the others, gave him great treasures,
and made him the first in the kingdom.

The King had a daughter who was very beautiful, but she was also very
strange.  She had made a vow to take no one as her lord and husband
who did not promise to let himself be buried alive with her if she died
first. "If he loves me with all his heart," said she, "of what use will
life be to him afterwards?" On her side she would do the same, and if
he died first, would go down to the grave with him. This strange oath
had up to this time frightened away all wooers, but the youth became so
charmed with her beauty that he cared for nothing, but asked her father
for her. "But dost thou know what thou must promise?" said the King. "I
must be buried with her," he replied, "if I outlive her, but my love
is so great that I do not mind the danger." Then the King consented,
and the wedding was solemnized with great splendour.

They lived now for a while happy and contented with each other, and
then it befell that the young Queen was attacked by a severe illness,
and no physician could save her. And as she lay there dead, the young
King remembered what he had been obliged to promise, and was horrified at
having to lie down alive in the grave, but there was no escape. The King
had placed sentries at all the gates, and it was not possible to avoid
his fate. When the day came when the corpse was to be buried, he was taken
down into the royal vault with it and then the door was shut and bolted.

Near the coffin stood a table on which were four candles, four loaves of
bread, and four bottles of wine, and when this provision came to an end,
he would have to die of hunger. And now he sat there full of pain and
grief, ate every day only a little piece of bread, drank only a mouthful
of wine, and nevertheless saw death daily drawing nearer. Whilst he thus
gazed before him, he saw a snake creep out of a corner of the vault
and approach the dead body. And as he thought it came to gnaw at it,
he drew his sword and said, "As long as I live, thou shalt not touch
her," and hewed the snake in three pieces. After a time a second snake
crept out of the hole, and when it saw the other lying dead and cut in
pieces, it went back, but soon came again with three green leaves in its
mouth. Then it took the three pieces of the snake, laid them together, as
they ought to go, and placed one of the leaves on each wound. Immediately
the severed parts joined themselves together, the snake moved, and became
alive again, and both of them hastened away together. The leaves were
left lying on the ground, and a desire came into the mind of the unhappy
man who had been watching all this, to know if the wondrous power of the
leaves which had brought the snake to life again, could not likewise be
of service to a human being. So he picked up the leaves and laid one of
them on the mouth of his dead wife, and the two others on her eyes. And
hardly had he done this than the blood stirred in her veins, rose into
her pale face, and coloured it again. Then she drew breath, opened her
eyes, and said, "Ah, God, where am I?" "Thou art with me, dear wife,"
he answered, and told her how everything had happened, and how he had
brought her back again to life. Then he gave her some wine and bread,
and when she had regained her strength, he raised her up and they went
to the door and knocked, and called so loudly that the sentries heard
it, and told the King. The King came down himself and opened the door,
and there he found both strong and well, and rejoiced with them that now
all sorrow was over. The young King, however, took the three snake-leaves
with him, gave them to a servant and said, "Keep them for me carefully,
and carry them constantly about thee; who knows in what trouble they
may yet be of service to us!"

A change had, however, taken place in his wife; after she had been
restored to life, it seemed as if all love for her husband had gone out
of her heart. After some time, when he wanted to make a voyage over
the sea, to visit his old father, and they had gone on board a ship,
she forgot the great love and fidelity which he had shown her, and which
had been the means of rescuing her from death, and conceived a wicked
inclination for the skipper. And once when the young King lay there
asleep, she called in the skipper and seized the sleeper by the head,
and the skipper took him by the feet, and thus they threw him down into
the sea.  When the shameful deed was done, she said, "Now let us return
home, and say that he died on the way. I will extol and praise thee so
to my father that he will marry me to thee, and make thee the heir to
his crown." But the faithful servant who had seen all that they did,
unseen by them, unfastened a little boat from the ship, got into it,
sailed after his master, and let the traitors go on their way. He fished
up the dead body, and by the help of the three snake-leaves which he
carried about with him, and laid on the eyes and mouth, he fortunately
brought the young King back to life.

They both rowed with all their strength day and night, and their little
boat flew so swiftly that they reached the old King before the others
did. He was astonished when he saw them come alone, and asked what
had happened to them. When he learnt the wickedness of his daughter
he said, "I cannot believe that she has behaved so ill, but the truth
will soon come to light," and bade both go into a secret chamber and
keep themselves hidden from every one. Soon afterwards the great ship
came sailing in, and the godless woman appeared before her father with a
troubled countenance. He said, "Why dost thou come back alone? Where is
thy husband?" "Ah, dear father," she replied, "I come home again in great
grief; during the voyage, my husband became suddenly ill and died, and if
the good skipper had not given me his help, it would have gone ill with
me. He was present at his death, and can tell you all." The King said,
"I will make the dead alive again," and opened the chamber, and bade
the two come out. When the woman saw her husband, she was thunderstruck,
and fell on her knees and begged for mercy. The King said, "There is no
mercy. He was ready to die with thee and restored thee to life again,
but thou hast murdered him in his sleep, and shalt receive the reward
that thou deservest." Then she was placed with her accomplice in a ship
which had been pierced with holes, and sent out to sea, where they soon
sank amid the waves.



17 The White Snake

A long time ago there lived a king who was famed for his wisdom through
all the land. Nothing was hidden from him, and it seemed as if news of
the most secret things was brought to him through the air. But he had
a strange custom; every day after dinner, when the table was cleared,
and no one else was present, a trusty servant had to bring him one more
dish. It was covered, however, and even the servant did not know what
was in it, neither did anyone know, for the King never took off the
cover to eat of it until he was quite alone.

This had gone on for a long time, when one day the servant, who took
away the dish, was overcome with such curiosity that he could not help
carrying the dish into his room. When he had carefully locked the door,
he lifted up the cover, and saw a white snake lying on the dish. But
when he saw it he could not deny himself the pleasure of tasting it,
so he cut off a little bit and put it into his mouth.  No sooner had it
touched his tongue than he heard a strange whispering of little voices
outside his window. He went and listened, and then noticed that it was
the sparrows who were chattering together, and telling one another of
all kinds of things which they had seen in the fields and woods. Eating
the snake had given him power of understanding the language of animals.

Now it so happened that on this very day the Queen lost her most beautiful
ring, and suspicion of having stolen it fell upon this trusty servant,
who was allowed to go everywhere. The King ordered the man to be brought
before him, and threatened with angry words that unless he could before
the morrow point out the thief, he himself should be looked upon as guilty
and executed. In vain he declared his innocence; he was dismissed with
no better answer.

In his trouble and fear he went down into the courtyard and took
thought how to help himself out of his trouble. Now some ducks were
sitting together quietly by a brook and taking their rest; and, whilst
they were making their feathers smooth with their bills, they were
having a confidential conversation together. The servant stood by and
listened. They were telling one another of all the places where they had
been waddling about all the morning, and what good food they had found,
and one said in a pitiful tone, "Something lies heavy on my stomach;
as I was eating in haste I swallowed a ring which lay under the Queen's
window." The servant at once seized her by the neck, carried her to
the kitchen, and said to the cook, "Here is a fine duck; pray, kill
her." "Yes," said the cook, and weighed her in his hand; "she has spared
no trouble to fatten herself, and has been waiting to be roasted long
enough." So he cut off her head, and as she was being dressed for the
spit, the Queen's ring was found inside her.

The servant could now easily prove his innocence; and the King, to make
amends for the wrong, allowed him to ask a favor, and promised him the
best place in the court that he could wish for. The servant refused
everything, and only asked for a horse and some money for traveling,
as he had a mind to see the world and go about a little.

When his request was granted he set out on his way, and one day came
to a pond, where he saw three fishes caught in the reeds and gasping
for water.  Now, though it is said that fishes are dumb, he heard them
lamenting that they must perish so miserably, and, as he had a kind
heart, he got off his horse and put the three prisoners back into the
water. They quivered with delight, put out their heads, and cried to him,
"We will remember you and repay you for saving us!"

He rode on, and after a while it seemed to him that he heard a voice
in the sand at his feet. He listened, and heard an ant-king complain,
"Why cannot folks, with their clumsy beasts, keep off our bodies? That
stupid horse, with his heavy hoofs, has been treading down my people
without mercy!" So he turned on to a side path and the ant-king cried
out to him, "We will remember you---one good turn deserves another!"

The path led him into a wood, and here he saw two old ravens standing by
their nest, and throwing out their young ones. "Out with you, you idle,
good-for-nothing creatures!" cried they; "we cannot find food for you
any longer; you are big enough, and can provide for yourselves." But the
poor young ravens lay upon the ground, flapping their wings, and crying,
"Oh, what helpless chicks we are! We must shift for ourselves, and yet
we cannot fly! What can we do, but lie here and starve?" So the good
young fellow alighted and killed his horse with his sword, and gave it to
them for food. Then they came hopping up to it, satisfied their hunger,
and cried, "We will remember you---one good turn deserves another!"

And now he had to use his own legs, and when he had walked a long way, he
came to a large city. There was a great noise and crowd in the streets,
and a man rode up on horseback, crying aloud, "The King's daughter
wants a husband; but whoever sues for her hand must perform a hard task,
and if he does not succeed he will forfeit his life." Many had already
made the attempt, but in vain; nevertheless when the youth saw the King's
daughter he was so overcome by her great beauty that he forgot all danger,
went before the King, and declared himself a suitor.

So he was led out to the sea, and a gold ring was thrown into it, in his
sight; then the King ordered him to fetch this ring up from the bottom of
the sea, and added, "If you come up again without it you will be thrown in
again and again until you perish amid the waves." All the people grieved
for the handsome youth; then they went away, leaving him alone by the sea.

He stood on the shore and considered what he should do, when suddenly
he saw three fishes come swimming towards him, and they were the very
fishes whose lives he had saved. The one in the middle held a mussel in
its mouth, which it laid on the shore at the youth's feet, and when he
had taken it up and opened it, there lay the gold ring in the shell. Full
of joy he took it to the King, and expected that he would grant him the
promised reward.

But when the proud princess perceived that he was not her equal in birth,
she scorned him, and required him first to perform another task. She
went down into the garden and strewed with her own hands ten sacks-full
of millet-seed on the grass; then she said, "To-morrow morning before
sunrise these must be picked up, and not a single grain be wanting."

The youth sat down in the garden and considered how it might be possible
to perform this task, but he could think of nothing, and there he sat
sorrowfully awaiting the break of day, when he should be led to death. But
as soon as the first rays of the sun shone into the garden he saw all the
ten sacks standing side by side, quite full, and not a single grain was
missing. The ant-king had come in the night with thousands and thousands
of ants, and the grateful creatures had by great industry picked up all
the millet-seed and gathered them into the sacks.

Presently the King's daughter herself came down into the garden,
and was amazed to see that the young man had done the task she had
given him. But she could not yet conquer her proud heart, and said,
"Although he has performed both the tasks, he shall not be my husband
until he has brought me an apple from the Tree of Life."

The youth did not know where the Tree of Life stood, but he set out,
and would have gone on for ever, as long as his legs would carry him,
though he had no hope of finding it. After he had wandered through three
kingdoms, he came one evening to a wood, and lay down under a tree to
sleep. But he heard a rustling in the branches, and a golden apple fell
into his hand. At the same time three ravens flew down to him, perched
themselves upon his knee, and said, "We are the three young ravens
whom you saved from starving; when we had grown big, and heard that you
were seeking the Golden Apple, we flew over the sea to the end of the
world, where the Tree of Life stands, and have brought you the apple."
The youth, full of joy, set out homewards, and took the Golden Apple to
the King's beautiful daughter, who had no more excuses left to make. They
cut the Apple of Life in two and ate it together; and then her heart
became full of love for him, and they lived in undisturbed happiness to
a great age.



18 The Straw, the Coal, and the Bean

In a village dwelt a poor old woman, who had gathered together a dish of
beans and wanted to cook them. So she made a fire on her hearth, and that
it might burn the quicker, she lighted it with a handful of straw. When
she was emptying the beans into the pan, one dropped without her observing
it, and lay on the ground beside a straw, and soon afterwards a burning
coal from the fire leapt down to the two. Then the straw began and
said, "Dear friends, from whence do you come here?" The coal replied,
"I fortunately sprang out of the fire, and if I had not escaped by main
force, my death would have been certain,---I should have been burnt to
ashes." The bean said, "I too have escaped with a whole skin, but if
the old woman had got me into the pan, I should have been made into
broth without any mercy, like my comrades." "And would a better fate
have fallen to my lot?" said the straw. "The old woman has destroyed
all my brethren in fire and smoke; she seized sixty of them at once,
and took their lives. I luckily slipped through her fingers."

"But what are we to do now?" said the coal.

"I think," answered the bean, "that as we have so fortunately escaped
death, we should keep together like good companions, and lest a new
mischance should overtake us here, we should go away together, and repair
to a foreign country."

The proposition pleased the two others, and they set out on their way in
company. Soon, however, they came to a little brook, and as there was no
bridge or foot-plank, they did not know how they were to get over it. The
straw hit on a good idea, and said, "I will lay myself straight across,
and then you can walk over on me as on a bridge." The straw therefore
stretched itself from one bank to the other, and the coal, who was of
an impetuous disposition, tripped quite boldly on to the newly-built
bridge. But when she had reached the middle, and heard the water rushing
beneath her, she was, after all, afraid, and stood still, and ventured no
farther. The straw, however, began to burn, broke in two pieces, and fell
into the stream. The coal slipped after her, hissed when she got into the
water, and breathed her last. The bean, who had prudently stayed behind
on the shore, could not but laugh at the event, was unable to stop, and
laughed so heartily that she burst. It would have been all over with her,
likewise, if, by good fortune, a tailor who was traveling in search of
work, had not sat down to rest by the brook. As he had a compassionate
heart he pulled out his needle and thread, and sewed her together. The
bean thanked him most prettily, but as the tailor used black thread,
all beans since then have a black seam.



19 The Fisherman and His Wife

There was once on a time a Fisherman who lived with his wife in a
miserable hovel close by the sea, and every day he went out fishing. And
once as he was sitting with his rod, looking at the clear water,
his line suddenly went down, far down below, and when he drew it up
again he brought out a large Flounder.  Then the Flounder said to him,
"Hark, you Fisherman, I pray you, let me live, I am no Flounder really,
but an enchanted prince. What good will it do you to kill me? I should
not be good to eat, put me in the water again, and let me go."  "Come,"
said the Fisherman, "there is no need for so many words about it---a fish
that can talk I should certainly let go, anyhow," with that he put him
back again into the clear water, and the Flounder went to the bottom,
leaving a long streak of blood behind him. Then the Fisherman got up
and went home to his wife in the hovel.

"Husband," said the woman, "have you caught nothing to-day?" "No," said
the man, "I did catch a Flounder, who said he was an enchanted prince,
so I let him go again." "Did you not wish for anything first?" said the
woman. "No," said the man; "what should I wish for?" "Ah," said the woman,
"it is surely hard to have to live always in this dirty hovel; you might
have wished for a small cottage for us.  Go back and call him. Tell him
we want to have a small cottage, he will certainly give us that." "Ah,"
said the man, "why should I go there again?" "Why," said the woman,
"you did catch him, and you let him go again; he is sure to do it. Go
at once." The man still did not quite like to go, but did not like to
oppose his wife, and went to the sea.

When he got there the sea was all green and yellow, and no longer so
smooth; so he stood still and said,


 "Flounder, flounder in the sea,
 Come, I pray thee, here to me;

 For my wife, good Ilsabil,
 Wills not as I'd have her will."

Then the Flounder came swimming to him and said, "Well what does she
want, then?" "Ah," said the man, "I did catch you, and my wife says I
really ought to have wished for something. She does not like to live
in a wretched hovel any longer. She would like to have a cottage." "Go,
then," said the Flounder, "she has it already."

When the man went home, his wife was no longer in the hovel, but instead
of it there stood a small cottage, and she was sitting on a bench before
the door.  Then she took him by the hand and said to him, "Just come
inside, look, now isn't this a great deal better?" So they went in,
and there was a small porch, and a pretty little parlor and bedroom,
and a kitchen and pantry, with the best of furniture, and fitted up
with the most beautiful things made of tin and brass, whatsoever was
wanted. And behind the cottage there was a small yard, with hens and
ducks, and a little garden with flowers and fruit. "Look," said the wife,
"is not that nice!" "Yes," said the husband, "and so we must always think
it, -- now we will live quite contented." "We will think about that,"
said the wife. With that they ate something and went to bed.

Everything went well for a week or a fortnight, and then the woman
said, "Hark you, husband, this cottage is far too small for us, and
the garden and yard are little; the Flounder might just as well have
given us a larger house. I should like to live in a great stone castle;
go to the Flounder, and tell him to give us a castle."  "Ah, wife,"
said the man, "the cottage is quite good enough; why should we live in a
castle?" "What!" said the woman; "just go there, the Flounder can always
do that." "No, wife," said the man, "the Flounder has just given us the
cottage, I do not like to go back so soon, it might make him angry." "Go,"
said the woman, "he can do it quite easily, and will be glad to do it;
just you go to him."

The man's heart grew heavy, and he would not go. He said to himself,
"It is not right," and yet he went. And when he came to the sea the water
was quite purple and dark-blue, and grey and thick, and no longer so
green and yellow, but it was still quiet. And he stood there and said---


 "Flounder, flounder in the sea,
 Come, I pray thee, here to me;

 For my wife, good Ilsabil,
 Wills not as I'd have her will."

"Well, what does she want, then?" said the Flounder. "Alas," said the
man, half scared, "she wants to live in a great stone castle." "Go to it,
then, she is standing before the door," said the Flounder.

Then the man went away, intending to go home, but when he got there,
he found a great stone palace, and his wife was just standing on the
steps going in, and she took him by the hand and said, "Come in." So he
went in with her, and in the castle was a great hall paved with marble,
and many servants, who flung wide the doors; And the walls were all
bright with beautiful hangings, and in the rooms were chairs and tables
of pure gold, and crystal chandeliers hung from the ceiling, and all
the rooms and bed-rooms had carpets, and food and wine of the very best
were standing on all the tables, so that they nearly broke down beneath
it. Behind the house, too, there was a great court-yard, with stables for
horses and cows, and the very best of carriages; there was a magnificent
large garden, too, with the most beautiful flowers and fruit-trees,
and a park quite half a mile long, in which were stags, deer, and hares,
and everything that could be desired.  "Come," said the woman, "isn't that
beautiful?" "Yes, indeed," said the man, "now let it be; and we will live
in this beautiful castle and be content." "We will consider about that,"
said the woman, "and sleep upon it;" thereupon they went to bed.

Next morning the wife awoke first, and it was just daybreak, and from
her bed she saw the beautiful country lying before her. Her husband was
still stretching himself, so she poked him in the side with her elbow,
and said, "Get up, husband, and just peep out of the window. Look you,
couldn't we be the King over all that land? Go to the Flounder, we will
be the King." "Ah, wife," said the man, "why should we be King? I do not
want to be King." "Well," said the wife, "if you won't be King, I will;
go to the Flounder, for I will be King." "Ah, wife," said the man, "why do
you want to be King? I do not like to say that to him."  "Why not?" said
the woman; "go to him this instant; I must be King!" So the man went, and
was quite unhappy because his wife wished to be King. "It is not right;
it is not right," thought he. He did not wish to go, but yet he went.

And when he came to the sea, it was quite dark-grey, and the water heaved
up from below, and smelt putrid. Then he went and stood by it, and said,


 "Flounder, flounder in the sea,
 Come, I pray thee, here to me;

 For my wife, good Ilsabil,
 Wills not as I'd have her will"

"Well, what does she want, then?" said the Flounder. "Alas," said the man,
"she wants to be King." "Go to her; she is King already."

So the man went, and when he came to the palace, the castle had become
much larger, and had a great tower and magnificent ornaments, and
the sentinel was standing before the door, and there were numbers of
soldiers with kettle-drums and trumpets. And when he went inside the
house, everything was of real marble and gold, with velvet covers and
great golden tassels. Then the doors of the hall were opened, and there
was the court in all its splendour, and his wife was sitting on a high
throne of gold and diamonds, with a great crown of gold on her head,
and a sceptre of pure gold and jewels in her hand, and on both sides of
her stood her maids-in-waiting in a row, each of them always one head
shorter than the last.

Then he went and stood before her, and said, "Ah, wife, and now you
are King."  "Yes," said the woman, "now I am King." So he stood and
looked at her, and when he had looked at her thus for some time, he
said, "And now that you are King, let all else be, now we will wish
for nothing more." "Nay, husband," said the woman, quite anxiously,
"I find time pass very heavily, I can bear it no longer; go to the
Flounder---I am King, but I must be Emperor, too." "Alas, wife, why do
you wish to be Emperor?" "Husband," said she, "go to the Flounder. I will
be Emperor." "Alas, wife," said the man, "he cannot make you Emperor;
I may not say that to the fish. There is only one Emperor in the land. An
Emperor the Flounder cannot make you! I assure you he cannot."

"What!" said the woman, "I am the King, and you are nothing but my
husband; will you go this moment? go at once! If he can make a King he
can make an emperor. I will be Emperor; go instantly." So he was forced
to go. As the man went, however, he was troubled in mind, and thought
to himself, "It will not end well; it will not end well! Emperor is too
shameless! The Flounder will at last be tired out."

With that he reached the sea, and the sea was quite black and thick,
and began to boil up from below, so that it threw up bubbles, and such
a sharp wind blew over it that it curdled, and the man was afraid. Then
he went and stood by it, and said,


 "Flounder, flounder in the sea,
 Come, I pray thee, here to me;

 For my wife, good Ilsabil,
 Wills not as I'd have her will."

"Well, what does she want, then?" said the Flounder. "Alas, Flounder,"
said he, "my wife wants to be Emperor." "Go to her," said the Flounder;
"she is Emperor already."

So the man went, and when he got there the whole palace was made of
polished marble with alabaster figures and golden ornaments, and soldiers
were marching before the door blowing trumpets, and beating cymbals and
drums; and in the house, barons, and counts, and dukes were going about as
servants. Then they opened the doors to him, which were of pure gold. And
when he entered, there sat his wife on a throne, which was made of one
piece of gold, and was quite two miles high; and she wore a great golden
crown that was three yards high, and set with diamonds and carbuncles,
and in one hand she had the sceptre, and in the other the imperial orb;
and on both sides of her stood the yeomen of the guard in two rows,
each being smaller than the one before him, from the biggest giant,
who was two miles high, to the very smallest dwarf, just as big as my
little finger. And before it stood a number of princes and dukes.

Then the man went and stood among them, and said, "Wife, are you Emperor
now?" "Yes," said she, "now I am Emperor." Then he stood and looked at
her well, and when he had looked at her thus for some time, he said,
"Ah, wife, be content, now that you are Emperor." "Husband," said she,
"why are you standing there? Now, I am Emperor, but I will be Pope too;
go to the Flounder." "Alas, wife," said the man, "what will you not wish
for? You cannot be Pope. There is but one in Christendom. He cannot
make you Pope." "Husband," said she, "I will be Pope; go immediately,
I must be Pope this very day." "No, wife," said the man, "I do not like
to say that to him; that would not do, it is too much; the Flounder
can't make you Pope." "Husband," said she, "what nonsense! If he can
make an emperor he can make a pope. Go to him directly. I am Emperor,
and you are nothing but my husband; will you go at once?"

Then he was afraid and went; but he was quite faint, and shivered and
shook, and his knees and legs trembled. And a high wind blew over the
land, and the clouds flew, and towards evening all grew dark, and the
leaves fell from the trees, and the water rose and roared as if it were
boiling, and splashed upon the shore. And in the distance he saw ships
which were firing guns in their sore need, pitching and tossing on the
waves. And yet in the midst of the sky there was still a small bit of
blue, though on every side it was as red as in a heavy storm. So, full
of despair, he went and stood in much fear and said,

"Flounder, flounder in the sea, Come, I pray thee, here to me;" For my
wife, good Ilsabil, Wills not as I'd have her will.

"Well, what does she want, then?" said the Flounder. "Alas," said
the man, "she wants to be Pope." "Go to her then," said the Flounder;
"she is Pope already."

So he went, and when he got there, he saw what seemed to be a large church
surrounded by palaces. He pushed his way through the crowd. Inside,
however, everything was lighted up with thousands and thousands of
candles, and his wife was clad in gold, and she was sitting on a much
higher throne, and had three great golden crowns on, and round about
her there was much ecclesiastical splendour; and on both sides of
her was a row of candles the largest of which was as tall as the very
tallest tower, down to the very smallest kitchen candle, and all the
emperors and kings were on their knees before her, kissing her shoe.
"Wife," said the man, and looked attentively at her, "are you now
Pope?" "Yes," said she, "I am Pope." So he stood and looked at her,
and it was just as if he was looking at the bright sun. When he had
stood looking at her thus for a short time, he said, "Ah, wife, if you
are Pope, do let well alone!" But she looked as stiff as a post, and
did not move or show any signs of life. Then said he, "Wife, now that
you are Pope, be satisfied, you cannot become anything greater now."
"I will consider about that," said the woman. Thereupon they both went
to bed, but she was not satisfied, and greediness let her have no sleep,
for she was continually thinking what there was left for her to be.

The man slept well and soundly, for he had run about a great deal during
the day; but the woman could not fall asleep at all, and flung herself
from one side to the other the whole night through, thinking always what
more was left for her to be, but unable to call to mind anything else. At
length the sun began to rise, and when the woman saw the red of dawn,
she sat up in bed and looked at it. And when, through the window, she saw
the sun thus rising, she said, "Cannot I, too, order the sun and moon
to rise?" "Husband," she said, poking him in the ribs with her elbows,
"wake up! go to the Flounder, for I wish to be even as God is." The man
was still half asleep, but he was so horrified that he fell out of bed. He
thought he must have heard amiss, and rubbed his eyes, and said, "Alas,
wife, what are you saying?" "Husband," said she, "if I can't order the
sun and moon to rise, and have to look on and see the sun and moon rising,
I can't bear it. I shall not know what it is to have another happy hour,
unless I can make them rise myself." Then she looked at him so terribly
that a shudder ran over him, and said, "Go at once; I wish to be like
unto God." "Alas, wife," said the man, falling on his knees before her,
"the Flounder cannot do that; he can make an emperor and a pope; I beseech
you, go on as you are, and be Pope." Then she fell into a rage, and her
hair flew wildly about her head, and she cried, "I will not endure this,
I'll not bear it any longer; wilt thou go?" Then he put on his trousers
and ran away like a madman. But outside a great storm was raging, and
blowing so hard that he could scarcely keep his feet; houses and trees
toppled over, the mountains trembled, rocks rolled into the sea, the sky
was pitch black, and it thundered and lightened, and the sea came in with
black waves as high as church-towers and mountains, and all with crests
of white foam at the top. Then he cried, but could not hear his own words,


 "Flounder, flounder in the sea,
 Come, I pray thee, here to me;

 For my wife, good Ilsabil,
 Wills not as I'd have her will."

"Well, what does she want, then?" said the Flounder. "Alas," said he, "she
wants to be like unto God." "Go to her, and you will find her back again
in the dirty hovel." And there they are living still at this very time.



20 The Valiant Little Tailor

One summer's morning a little tailor was sitting on his table by the
window; he was in good spirits, and sewed with all his might. Then came
a peasant woman down the street crying, "Good jams, cheap! Good jams,
cheap!" This rang pleasantly in the tailor's ears; he stretched his
delicate head out of the window, and called, "Come up here, dear woman;
here you will get rid of your goods."  The woman came up the three steps
to the tailor with her heavy basket, and he made her unpack the whole
of the pots for him. He inspected all of them, lifted them up, put his
nose to them, and at length said, "The jam seems to me to be good, so
weigh me out four ounces, dear woman, and if it is a quarter of a pound
that is of no consequence." The woman who had hoped to find a good sale,
gave him what he desired, but went away quite angry and grumbling. "Now,
God bless the jam to my use," cried the little tailor, "and give me
health and strength;" so he brought the bread out of the cupboard, cut
himself a piece right across the loaf and spread the jam over it. "This
won't taste bitter," said he, "but I will just finish the jacket before
I take a bite." He laid the bread near him, sewed on, and in his joy,
made bigger and bigger stitches. In the meantime the smell of the sweet
jam ascended so to the wall, where the flies were sitting in great
numbers, that they were attracted and descended on it in hosts. "Hola!
who invited you?" said the little tailor, and drove the unbidden guests
away. The flies, however, who understood no German, would not be turned
away, but came back again in ever-increasing companies. The little tailor
at last lost all patience, and got a bit of cloth from the hole under
his work-table, and saying, "Wait, and I will give it to you," struck
it mercilessly on them. When he drew it away and counted, there lay
before him no fewer than seven, dead and with legs stretched out. "Art
thou a fellow of that sort?" said he, and could not help admiring his
own bravery. "The whole town shall know of this!" And the little tailor
hastened to cut himself a girdle, stitched it, and embroidered on it in
large letters, "Seven at one stroke!" "What, the town!" he continued,
"The whole world shall hear of it!" and his heart wagged with joy like
a lamb's tail. The tailor put on the girdle, and resolved to go forth
into the world, because he thought his workshop was too small for his
valour. Before he went away, he sought about in the house to see if there
was anything which he could take with him; however, he found nothing
but an old cheese, and that he put in his pocket. In front of the door
he observed a bird which had caught itself in the thicket. It had to
go into his pocket with the cheese. Now he took to the road boldly,
and as he was light and nimble, he felt no fatigue. The road led him
up a mountain, and when he had reached the highest point of it, there
sat a powerful giant looking about him quite comfortably. The little
tailor went bravely up, spoke to him, and said, "Good day, comrade, so
thou art sitting there overlooking the wide-spread world! I am just on
my way thither, and want to try my luck. Hast thou any inclination to
go with me?" The giant looked contemptuously at the tailor, and said,
"Thou ragamuffin! Thou miserable creature!"

"Oh, indeed?" answered the little tailor, and unbuttoned his coat, and
showed the giant the girdle, "There mayst thou read what kind of a man
I am!" The giant read, "Seven at one stroke," and thought that they had
been men whom the tailor had killed, and began to feel a little respect
for the tiny fellow. Nevertheless, he wished to try him first, and took
a stone in his hand and squeezed it together so that water dropped out
of it. "Do that likewise," said the giant, "if thou hast strength?" "Is
that all?" said the tailor, "that is child's play with us!" and put his
hand into his pocket, brought out the soft cheese, and pressed it until
the liquid ran out of it. "Faith," said he, "that was a little better,
wasn't it?" The giant did not know what to say, and could not believe
it of the little man. Then the giant picked up a stone and threw it so
high that the eye could scarcely follow it.  "Now, little mite of a man,
do that likewise." "Well thrown," said the tailor, "but after all the
stone came down to earth again; I will throw you one which shall never
come back at all." And he put his hand into his pocket, took out the
bird, and threw it into the air. The bird, delighted with its liberty,
rose, flew away and did not come back. "How does that shot please you,
comrade?" asked the tailor.  "Thou canst certainly throw," said the giant,
"but now we will see if thou art able to carry anything properly." He
took the little tailor to a mighty oak tree which lay there felled on the
ground, and said, "If thou art strong enough, help me to carry the tree
out of the forest." "Readily," answered the little man; "take thou the
trunk on thy shoulders, and I will raise up the branches and twigs; after
all, they are the heaviest." The giant took the trunk on his shoulder,
but the tailor seated himself on a branch, and the giant who could not
look round, had to carry away the whole tree, and the little tailor into
the bargain: he behind, was quite merry and happy, and whistled the song,
"Three tailors rode forth from the gate," as if carrying the tree were
child's play. The giant, after he had dragged the heavy burden part
of the way, could go no further, and cried, "Hark you, I shall have
to let the tree fall!" The tailor sprang nimbly down, seized the tree
with both arms as if he had been carrying it, and said to the giant,
"Thou art such a great fellow, and yet canst not even carry the tree!"

They went on together, and as they passed a cherry-tree, the giant
laid hold of the top of the tree where the ripest fruit was hanging,
bent it down, gave it into the tailor's hand, and bade him eat. But the
little tailor was much too weak to hold the tree, and when the giant
let it go, it sprang back again, and the tailor was hurried into the air
with it. When he had fallen down again without injury, the giant said,
"What is this? Hast thou not strength enough to hold the weak twig?"
"There is no lack of strength," answered the little tailor. "Dost thou
think that could be anything to a man who has struck down seven at one
blow? I leapt over the tree because the huntsmen are shooting down there
in the thicket. Jump as I did, if thou canst do it." The giant made the
attempt, but could not get over the tree, and remained hanging in the
branches, so that in this also the tailor kept the upper hand.

The giant said, "If thou art such a valiant fellow, come with me into
our cavern and spend the night with us." The little tailor was willing,
and followed him. When they went into the cave, other giants were sitting
there by the fire, and each of them had a roasted sheep in his hand and
was eating it. The little tailor looked round and thought, "It is much
more spacious here than in my workshop." The giant showed him a bed,
and said he was to lie down in it and sleep. The bed, however, was too
big for the little tailor; he did not lie down in it, but crept into
a corner. When it was midnight, and the giant thought that the little
tailor was lying in a sound sleep, he got up, took a great iron bar, cut
through the bed with one blow, and thought he had given the grasshopper
his finishing stroke. With the earliest dawn the giants went into the
forest, and had quite forgotten the little tailor, when all at once he
walked up to them quite merrily and boldly. The giants were terrified,
they were afraid that he would strike them all dead, and ran away in a
great hurry.

The little tailor went onwards, always following his own pointed
nose. After he had walked for a long time, he came to the courtyard of
a royal palace, and as he felt weary, he lay down on the grass and fell
asleep. Whilst he lay there, the people came and inspected him on all
sides, and read on his girdle, "Seven at one stroke." "Ah," said they,
"What does the great warrior here in the midst of peace? He must be a
mighty lord." They went and announced him to the King, and gave it as
their opinion that if war should break out, this would be a weighty and
useful man who ought on no account to be allowed to depart. The counsel
pleased the King, and he sent one of his courtiers to the little tailor to
offer him military service when he awoke. The ambassador remained standing
by the sleeper, waited until he stretched his limbs and opened his eyes,
and then conveyed to him this proposal. "For this very reason have I come
here," the tailor replied, "I am ready to enter the King's service." He
was therefore honorably received and a special dwelling was assigned him.

The soldiers, however, were set against the little tailor, and wished
him a thousand miles away. "What is to be the end of this?" they said
amongst themselves. "If we quarrel with him, and he strikes about him,
seven of us will fall at every blow; not one of us can stand against
him." They came therefore to a decision, betook themselves in a body to
the King, and begged for their dismissal. "We are not prepared," said
they, "to stay with a man who kills seven at one stroke." The King was
sorry that for the sake of one he should lose all his faithful servants,
wished that he had never set eyes on the tailor, and would willingly have
been rid of him again. But he did not venture to give him his dismissal,
for he dreaded lest he should strike him and all his people dead, and
place himself on the royal throne. He thought about it for a long time,
and at last found good counsel. He sent to the little tailor and caused
him to be informed that as he was such a great warrior, he had one request
to make to him. In a forest of his country lived two giants who caused
great mischief with their robbing, murdering, ravaging, and burning, and
no one could approach them without putting himself in danger of death. If
the tailor conquered and killed these two giants, he would give him his
only daughter to wife, and half of his kingdom as a dowry, likewise
one hundred horsemen should go with him to assist him.  "That would
indeed be a fine thing for a man like me!" thought the little tailor.
"One is not offered a beautiful princess and half a kingdom every day
of one's life!" "Oh, yes," he replied, "I will soon subdue the giants,
and do not require the help of the hundred horsemen to do it; he who
can hit seven with one blow has no need to be afraid of two."

The little tailor went forth, and the hundred horsemen followed him. When
he came to the outskirts of the forest, he said to his followers, "Just
stay waiting here, I alone will soon finish off the giants." Then he
bounded into the forest and looked about right and left. After a while he
perceived both giants. They lay sleeping under a tree, and snored so that
the branches waved up and down. The little tailor, not idle, gathered
two pocketsful of stones, and with these climbed up the tree. When he
was half-way up, he slipped down by a branch, until he sat just above the
sleepers, and then let one stone after another fall on the breast of one
of the giants. For a long time the giant felt nothing, but at last he
awoke, pushed his comrade, and said, "Why art thou knocking me?" "Thou
must be dreaming," said the other, "I am not knocking thee." They laid
themselves down to sleep again, and then the tailor threw a stone down on
the second. "What is the meaning of this?" cried the other. "Why art thou
pelting me?" "I am not pelting thee," answered the first, growling. They
disputed about it for a time, but as they were weary they let the matter
rest, and their eyes closed once more. The little tailor began his game
again, picked out the biggest stone, and threw it with all his might on
the breast of the first giant. "That is too bad!" cried he, and sprang
up like a madman, and pushed his companion against the tree until it
shook. The other paid him back in the same coin, and they got into such
a rage that they tore up trees and belabored each other so long, that at
last they both fell down dead on the ground at the same time. Then the
little tailor leapt down. "It is a lucky thing," said he, "that they
did not tear up the tree on which I was sitting, or I should have had
to spring on to another like a squirrel; but we tailors are nimble."
He drew out his sword and gave each of them a couple of thrusts in the
breast, and then went out to the horsemen and said, "The work is done;
I have given both of them their finishing stroke, but it was hard
work! They tore up trees in their sore need, and defended themselves
with them, but all that is to no purpose when a man like myself comes,
who can kill seven at one blow." "But are you not wounded?" asked the
horsemen. "You need not concern yourself about that," answered the tailor,
"They have not bent one hair of mine." The horsemen would not believe
him, and rode into the forest; there they found the giants swimming in
their blood, and all round about lay the torn-up trees.

The little tailor demanded of the King the promised reward; he, however,
repented of his promise, and again bethought himself how he could get
rid of the hero. "Before thou receivest my daughter, and the half of my
kingdom," said he to him, "thou must perform one more heroic deed. In
the forest roams a unicorn which does great harm, and thou must catch
it first." "I fear one unicorn still less than two giants. Seven at one
blow, is my kind of affair." He took a rope and an axe with him, went
forth into the forest, and again bade those who were sent with him to
wait outside. He had to seek long. The unicorn soon came towards him,
and rushed directly on the tailor, as if it would spit him on his horn
without more ceremony. "Softly, softly; it can't be done as quickly as
that," said he, and stood still and waited until the animal was quite
close, and then sprang nimbly behind the tree. The unicorn ran against
the tree with all its strength, and struck its horn so fast in the trunk
that it had not strength enough to draw it out again, and thus it was
caught. "Now, I have got the bird," said the tailor, and came out from
behind the tree and put the rope round its neck, and then with his axe
he hewed the horn out of the tree, and when all was ready he led the
beast away and took it to the King.

The King still would not give him the promised reward, and made a third
demand. Before the wedding the tailor was to catch him a wild boar that
made great havoc in the forest, and the huntsmen should give him their
help. "Willingly," said the tailor, "that is child's play!" He did not
take the huntsmen with him into the forest, and they were well pleased
that he did not, for the wild boar had several times received them in
such a manner that they had no inclination to lie in wait for him. When
the boar perceived the tailor, it ran on him with foaming mouth and
whetted tusks, and was about to throw him to the ground, but the active
hero sprang into a chapel which was near, and up to the window at once,
and in one bound out again. The boar ran in after him, but the tailor ran
round outside and shut the door behind it, and then the raging beast,
which was much too heavy and awkward to leap out of the window, was
caught. The little tailor called the huntsmen thither that they might see
the prisoner with their own eyes.  The hero, however went to the King,
who was now, whether he liked it or not, obliged to keep his promise,
and gave him his daughter and the half of his kingdom. Had he known that
it was no warlike hero, but a little tailor who was standing before him,
it would have gone to his heart still more than it did. The wedding was
held with great magnificence and small joy, and out of a tailor a king
was made.

After some time the young Queen heard her husband say in his dreams at
night, "Boy, make me the doublet, and patch the pantaloons, or else I
will rap the yard-measure over thine ears." Then she discovered in what
state of life the young lord had been born, and next morning complained
of her wrongs to her father, and begged him to help her to get rid of
her husband, who was nothing else but a tailor. The King comforted her
and said, "Leave thy bed-room door open this night, and my servants
shall stand outside, and when he has fallen asleep shall go in, bind
him, and take him on board a ship which shall carry him into the wide
world." The woman was satisfied with this; but the King's armour-bearer,
who had heard all, was friendly with the young lord, and informed him of
the whole plot. "I'll put a screw into that business," said the little
tailor. At night he went to bed with his wife at the usual time, and
when she thought that he had fallen asleep, she got up, opened the door,
and then lay down again. The little tailor, who was only pretending to be
asleep, began to cry out in a clear voice, "Boy, make me the doublet and
patch me the pantaloons, or I will rap the yard-measure over thine ears. I
smote seven at one blow. I killed two giants, I brought away one unicorn
and caught a wild boar, and am I to fear those who are standing outside
the room." When these men heard the tailor speaking thus, they were
overcome by a great dread, and ran as if the wild huntsman were behind
them, and none of them would venture anything further against him. So
the little tailor was a king and remained one, to the end of his life.



21 Cinderella

The wife of a rich man fell sick, and as she felt that her end was drawing
near, she called her only daughter to her bedside and said, "Dear child,
be good and pious, and then the good God will always protect thee,
and I will look down on thee from heaven and be near thee." Thereupon
she closed her eyes and departed. Every day the maiden went out to her
mother's grave, and wept, and she remained pious and good. When winter
came the snow spread a white sheet over the grave, and when the spring
sun had drawn it off again, the man had taken another wife.

The woman had brought two daughters into the house with her, who were
beautiful and fair of face, but vile and black of heart. Now began a bad
time for the poor step-child. "Is the stupid goose to sit in the parlour
with us?" said they.  "He who wants to eat bread must earn it; out with
the kitchen-wench." They took her pretty clothes away from her, put an old
grey bedgown on her, and gave her wooden shoes. "Just look at the proud
princess, how decked out she is!" they cried, and laughed, and led her
into the kitchen. There she had to do hard work from morning till night,
get up before daybreak, carry water, light fires, cook and wash. Besides
this, the sisters did her every imaginable injury -- they mocked her
and emptied her peas and lentils into the ashes, so that she was forced
to sit and pick them out again. In the evening when she had worked till
she was weary she had no bed to go to, but had to sleep by the fireside
in the ashes. And as on that account she always looked dusty and dirty,
they called her Cinderella. It happened that the father was once going to
the fair, and he asked his two step-daughters what he should bring back
for them. "Beautiful dresses," said one, "Pearls and jewels," said the
second. "And thou, Cinderella," said he, "what wilt thou have?" "Father,
break off for me the first branch which knocks against your hat on
your way home." So he bought beautiful dresses, pearls and jewels for
his two step-daughters, and on his way home, as he was riding through
a green thicket, a hazel twig brushed against him and knocked off his
hat. Then he broke off the branch and took it with him. When he reached
home he gave his step-daughters the things which they had wished for,
and to Cinderella he gave the branch from the hazel-bush. Cinderella
thanked him, went to her mother's grave and planted the branch on it,
and wept so much that the tears fell down on it and watered it. And it
grew, however, and became a handsome tree. Thrice a day Cinderella went
and sat beneath it, and wept and prayed, and a little white bird always
came on the tree, and if Cinderella expressed a wish, the bird threw
down to her what she had wished for.

It happened, however, that the King appointed a festival which was to last
three days, and to which all the beautiful young girls in the country
were invited, in order that his son might choose himself a bride. When
the two step-sisters heard that they too were to appear among the number,
they were delighted, called Cinderella and said, "Comb our hair for us,
brush our shoes and fasten our buckles, for we are going to the festival
at the King's palace." Cinderella obeyed, but wept, because she too would
have liked to go with them to the dance, and begged her step-mother to
allow her to do so. "Thou go, Cinderella!" said she; "Thou art dusty
and dirty and wouldst go to the festival? Thou hast no clothes and
shoes, and yet wouldst dance!" As, however, Cinderella went on asking,
the step-mother at last said, "I have emptied a dish of lentils into
the ashes for thee, if thou hast picked them out again in two hours,
thou shalt go with us." The maiden went through the back-door into the
garden, and called, "You tame pigeons, you turtle-doves, and all you
birds beneath the sky, come and help me to pick


 "The good into the pot,
 The bad into the crop."

Then two white pigeons came in by the kitchen-window, and afterwards the
turtle-doves, and at last all the birds beneath the sky, came whirring
and crowding in, and alighted amongst the ashes. And the pigeons nodded
with their heads and began pick, pick, pick, pick, and the rest began
also pick, pick, pick, pick, and gathered all the good grains into the
dish. Hardly had one hour passed before they had finished, and all
flew out again. Then the girl took the dish to her step-mother, and
was glad, and believed that now she would be allowed to go with them to
the festival. But the step-mother said, "No, Cinderella, thou hast no
clothes and thou canst not dance; thou wouldst only be laughed at." And
as Cinderella wept at this, the step-mother said, "If thou canst pick
two dishes of lentils out of the ashes for me in one hour, thou shalt
go with us." And she thought to herself, "That she most certainly cannot
do." When the step-mother had emptied the two dishes of lentils amongst
the ashes, the maiden went through the back-door into the garden and
cried, You tame pigeons, you turtle-doves, and all you birds under heaven,
come and help me to pick


 "The good into the pot,
 The bad into the crop."

Then two white pigeons came in by the kitchen-window, and afterwards the
turtle-doves, and at length all the birds beneath the sky, came whirring
and crowding in, and alighted amongst the ashes. And the doves nodded with
their heads and began pick, pick, pick, pick, and the others began also
pick, pick, pick, pick, and gathered all the good seeds into the dishes,
and before half an hour was over they had already finished, and all
flew out again. Then the maiden carried the dishes to the step-mother
and was delighted, and believed that she might now go with them to
the festival. But the step-mother said, "All this will not help thee;
thou goest not with us, for thou hast no clothes and canst not dance;
we should be ashamed of thee!" On this she turned her back on Cinderella,
and hurried away with her two proud daughters.

As no one was now at home, Cinderella went to her mother's grave beneath
the hazel-tree, and cried,


 "Shiver and quiver, little tree,
 Silver and gold throw down over me."

Then the bird threw a gold and silver dress down to her, and slippers
embroidered with silk and silver. She put on the dress with all speed,
and went to the festival. Her step-sisters and the step-mother however did
not know her, and thought she must be a foreign princess, for she looked
so beautiful in the golden dress. They never once thought of Cinderella,
and believed that she was sitting at home in the dirt, picking lentils
out of the ashes. The prince went to meet her, took her by the hand and
danced with her. He would dance with no other maiden, and never left
loose of her hand, and if any one else came to invite her, he said,
"This is my partner."

She danced till it was evening, and then she wanted to go home. But
the King's son said, "I will go with thee and bear thee company," for he
wished to see to whom the beautiful maiden belonged. She escaped from him,
however, and sprang into the pigeon-house. The King's son waited until her
father came, and then he told him that the stranger maiden had leapt into
the pigeon-house. The old man thought, "Can it be Cinderella?" and they
had to bring him an axe and a pickaxe that he might hew the pigeon-house
to pieces, but no one was inside it.  And when they got home Cinderella
lay in her dirty clothes among the ashes, and a dim little oil-lamp
was burning on the mantle-piece, for Cinderella had jumped quickly down
from the back of the pigeon-house and had run to the little hazel-tree,
and there she had taken off her beautiful clothes and laid them on the
grave, and the bird had taken them away again, and then she had placed
herself in the kitchen amongst the ashes in her grey gown.

Next day when the festival began afresh, and her parents and the
step-sisters had gone once more, Cinderella went to the hazel-tree
and said---


 "Shiver and quiver, my little tree,
 Silver and gold throw down over me."

Then the bird threw down a much more beautiful dress than on the preceding
day. And when Cinderella appeared at the festival in this dress, every
one was astonished at her beauty. The King's son had waited until she
came, and instantly took her by the hand and danced with no one but
her. When others came and invited her, he said, "She is my partner." When
evening came she wished to leave, and the King's son followed her and
wanted to see into which house she went. But she sprang away from him,
and into the garden behind the house.  Therein stood a beautiful tall
tree on which hung the most magnificent pears. She clambered so nimbly
between the branches like a squirrel that the King's son did not know
where she was gone. He waited until her father came, and said to him,
"The stranger-maiden has escaped from me, and I believe she has climbed
up the pear-tree." The father thought, "Can it be Cinderella?" and had an
axe brought and cut the tree down, but no one was on it. And when they got
into the kitchen, Cinderella lay there amongst the ashes, as usual, for
she had jumped down on the other side of the tree, had taken the beautiful
dress to the bird on the little hazel-tree, and put on her grey gown.

On the third day, when the parents and sisters had gone away, Cinderella
went once more to her mother's grave and said to the little tree---


 "Shiver and quiver, my little tree,
 Silver and gold throw down over me."

And now the bird threw down to her a dress which was more splendid and
magnificent than any she had yet had, and the slippers were golden. And
when she went to the festival in the dress, no one knew how to speak
for astonishment. The King's son danced with her only, and if any one
invited her to dance, he said, "She is my partner."

When evening came, Cinderella wished to leave, and the King's son was
anxious to go with her, but she escaped from him so quickly that he could
not follow her.  The King's son had, however, used a strategem, and had
caused the whole staircase to be smeared with pitch, and there, when she
ran down, had the maiden's left slipper remained sticking. The King's son
picked it up, and it was small and dainty, and all golden. Next morning,
he went with it to the father, and said to him, "No one shall be my wife
but she whose foot this golden slipper fits."  Then were the two sisters
glad, for they had pretty feet. The eldest went with the shoe into her
room and wanted to try it on, and her mother stood by. But she could
not get her big toe into it, and the shoe was too small for her. Then
her mother gave her a knife and said, "Cut the toe off; when thou art
Queen thou wilt have no more need to go on foot." The maiden cut the
toe off, forced the foot into the shoe, swallowed the pain, and went
out to the King's son. Then he took her on his his horse as his bride
and rode away with her. They were, however, obliged to pass the grave,
and there, on the hazel-tree, sat the two pigeons and cried,


 "Turn and peep, turn and peep,
 There's blood within the shoe,

 The shoe it is too small for her,
 The true bride waits for you."

Then he looked at her foot and saw how the blood was streaming from it. He
turned his horse round and took the false bride home again, and said
she was not the true one, and that the other sister was to put the shoe
on. Then this one went into her chamber and got her toes safely into the
shoe, but her heel was too large. So her mother gave her a knife and said,
"Cut a bit off thy heel; when thou art Queen thou wilt have no more need
to go on foot." The maiden cut a bit off her heel, forced her foot into
the shoe, swallowed the pain, and went out to the King's son. He took
her on his horse as his bride, and rode away with her, but when they
passed by the hazel-tree, two little pigeons sat on it and cried,


 "Turn and peep, turn and peep,
 There's blood within the shoe

 The shoe it is too small for her,
 The true bride waits for you."

He looked down at her foot and saw how the blood was running out of
her shoe, and how it had stained her white stocking. Then he turned
his horse and took the false bride home again. "This also is not the
right one," said he, "have you no other daughter?" "No," said the man,
"There is still a little stunted kitchen-wench which my late wife left
behind her, but she cannot possibly be the bride." The King's son said
he was to send her up to him; but the mother answered, "Oh, no, she is
much too dirty, she cannot show herself!" He absolutely insisted on it,
and Cinderella had to be called. She first washed her hands and face
clean, and then went and bowed down before the King's son, who gave
her the golden shoe. Then she seated herself on a stool, drew her foot
out of the heavy wooden shoe, and put it into the slipper, which fitted
like a glove. And when she rose up and the King's son looked at her face
he recognized the beautiful maiden who had danced with him and cried,
"That is the true bride!" The step-mother and the two sisters were
terrified and became pale with rage; he, however, took Cinderella on
his horse and rode away with her. As they passed by the hazel-tree,
the two white doves cried---


 "Turn and peep, turn and peep,
 No blood is in the shoe,
 The shoe is not too small for her,
 The true bride rides with you,"

and when they had cried that, the two came flying down and placed
themselves on Cinderella's shoulders, one on the right, the other on
the left, and remained sitting there.

When the wedding with the King's son had to be celebrated, the two false
sisters came and wanted to get into favour with Cinderella and share her
good fortune.  When the betrothed couple went to church, the elder was at
the right side and the younger at the left, and the pigeons pecked out
one eye of each of them.  Afterwards as they came back, the elder was
at the left, and the younger at the right, and then the pigeons pecked
out the other eye of each. And thus, for their wickedness and falsehood,
they were punished with blindness as long as they lived.



22 The Riddle

There was once a King's son who was seized with a desire to travel
about the world, and took no one with him but a faithful servant. One
day he came to a great forest, and when darkness overtook him he could
find no shelter, and knew not where to pass the night. Then he saw a
girl who was going towards a small house, and when he came nearer, he
saw that the maiden was young and beautiful. He spoke to her, and said,
"Dear child, can I and my servant find shelter for the night in the little
house?" "Oh, yes," said the girl in a sad voice, "that you certainly can,
but I do not advise you to venture it. Do not go in." "Why not?" asked
the King's son. The maiden sighed and said, "My step-mother practises
wicked arts; she is ill-disposed toward strangers." Then he saw very
well that he had come to the house of a witch, but as it was dark, and he
could not go farther, and also was not afraid, he entered. The old woman
was sitting in an armchair by the fire, and looked at the stranger with
her red eyes. "Good evening," growled she, and pretended to be quite
friendly. "Take a seat and rest yourselves." She blew up the fire on
which she was cooking something in a small pot. The daughter warned the
two to be prudent, to eat nothing, and drink nothing, for the old woman
brewed evil drinks. They slept quietly until early morning. When they were
making ready for their departure, and the King's son was already seated
on his horse, the old woman said, "Stop a moment, I will first hand you
a parting draught." Whilst she fetched it, the King's son rode away,
and the servant who had to buckle his saddle tight, was the only one
present when the wicked witch came with the drink. "Take that to your
master," said she. But at that instant the glass broke and the poison
spirted on the horse, and it was so strong that the animal immediately
fell down dead. The servant ran after his master and told him what had
happened, but would not leave his saddle behind him, and ran back to
fetch it. When, however, he came to the dead horse a raven was already
sitting on it devouring it. "Who knows whether we shall find anything
better to-day?" said the servant; so he killed the raven, and took it
with him. And now they journeyed onwards into the forest the whole day,
but could not get out of it. By nightfall they found an inn and entered
it. The servant gave the raven to the innkeeper to make ready for
supper. They had, however, stumbled on a den of murderers, and during
the darkness twelve of these came, intending to kill the strangers and
rob them. Before they set about this work, they sat down to supper,
and the innkeeper and the witch sat down with them, and together they
ate a dish of soup in which was cut up the flesh of the raven.  Hardly,
however, had they swallowed a couple of mouthfuls, before they all
fell down dead, for the raven had communicated to them the poison from
the horse-flesh. There was no no one else left in the house but the
innkeeper's daughter, who was honest, and had taken no part in their
godless deeds. She opened all doors to the stranger and showed him the
heaped-up treasures. But the King's son said she might keep everything,
he would have none of it, and rode onwards with his servant.

After they had traveled about for a long time, they came to a town
in which was a beautiful but proud princess, who had caused it to be
proclaimed that whosoever should set her a riddle which she could not
guess, that man should be her husband; but if she guessed it, his head
must be cut off. She had three days to guess it in, but was so clever
that she always found the answer to the riddle given her, before the
appointed time. Nine suitors had already perished in this manner, when
the King's son arrived, and blinded by her great beauty, was willing to
stake his life for it. Then he went to her and laid his riddle before her.
"What is this?" said he, "One slew none, and yet slew twelve." She did not
know what that was, she thought and thought, but she could not find out,
she opened her riddle-books, but it was not in them---in short, her wisdom
was at an end.  As she did not know how to help herself, she ordered her
maid to creep into the lord's sleeping-chamber, and listen to his dreams,
and thought that he would perhaps speak in his sleep and discover the
riddle. But the clever servant had placed himself in the bed instead of
his master, and when the maid came there, he tore off from her the mantle
in which she had wrapped herself, and chased her out with rods. The second
night the King's daughter sent her maid-in-waiting, who was to see if she
could succeed better in listening, but the servant took her mantle also
away from her, and hunted her out with rods. Now the master believed
himself safe for the third night, and lay down in his own bed. Then
came the princess herself, and she had put on a misty-grey mantle, and
she seated herself near him. And when she thought that he was asleep
and dreaming, she spoke to him, and hoped that he would answer in his
sleep, as many do, but he was awake, and understood and heard everything
quite well. Then she asked, "One slew none, what is that?" He replied,
"A raven, which ate of a dead and poisoned horse, and died of it." She
inquired further, "And yet slew twelve, what is that?" He answered,
"That means twelve murderers, who ate the raven and died of it."

When she knew the answer to the riddle she wanted to steal away, but he
held her mantle so fast that she was forced to leave it behind her. Next
morning, the King's daughter announced that she had guessed the riddle,
and sent for the twelve judges and expounded it before them. But the
youth begged for a hearing, and said, "She stole into my room in the
night and questioned me, otherwise she could not have discovered it." The
judges said, "Bring us a proof of this." Then were the three mantles
brought thither by the servant, and when the judges saw the misty-grey
one which the King's daughter usually wore, they said, "Let the mantle be
embroidered with gold and silver, and then it will be your wedding-mantle.



23 The Mouse, the Bird, and the Sausage

Once on a time a mouse, a bird, and a sausage became companions, kept
house together, lived well and happily with each other, and wonderfully
increased their possessions. The bird's work was to fly every day into
the forest and bring back wood. The mouse had to carry water, light the
fire, and lay the table, but the sausage had to cook.

He who is too well off is always longing for something new. One day,
therefore, the bird met with another bird, on the way, to whom it related
its excellent circumstances and boasted of them. The other bird, however,
called it a poor simpleton for his hard work, but said that the two at
home had good times. For when the mouse had made her fire and carried her
water, she went into her little room to rest until they called her to lay
the table. The sausage stayed by the pot, saw that the food was cooking
well, and, when it was nearly time for dinner, it rolled itself once
or twice through the broth or vegetables and then they were buttered,
salted, and ready. When the bird came home and laid his burden down,
they sat down to dinner, and after they had had their meal, they slept
their fill till next morning, and that was a splendid life.

Next day the bird, prompted by the other bird, would go no more into the
wood, saying that he had been servant long enough, and had been made a
fool of by them, and that they must change about for once, and try to
arrange it in another way. And, though the mouse and the sausage also
begged most earnestly, the bird would have his way, and said it must be
tried. They cast lots about it, and the lot fell on the sausage who was
to carry wood, the mouse became cook, and the bird was to fetch water.

What happened? The little sausage went out towards the wood, the little
bird lighted the fire, the mouse stayed by the pot and waited alone until
little sausage came home and brought wood for next day. But the little
sausage stayed so long on the road that they both feared something was
amiss, and the bird flew out a little way in the air to meet it. Not
far off, however, it met a dog on the road who had fallen on the poor
sausage as lawful booty, and had seized and swallowed it.  The bird
charged the dog with an act of barefaced robbery, but it was in vain
to speak, for the dog said he had found forged letters on the sausage,
on which account its life was forfeited to him.

The bird sadly took up the wood, flew home, and related what he had
seen and heard. They were much troubled, but agreed to do their best
and remain together. The bird therefore laid the cloth, and the mouse
made ready the food, and wanted to dress it, and to get into the pot
as the sausage used to do, and roll and creep amongst the vegetables
to mix them; but before she got into the midst of them she was stopped,
and lost her skin and hair and life in the attempt.

When the bird came to carry up the dinner, no cook was there. In its
distress the bird threw the wood here and there, called and searched,
but no cook was to be found! Owing to his carelessness the wood caught
fire, so that a conflagration ensued, the bird hastened to fetch water,
and then the bucket dropped from his claws into the well, and he fell
down with it, and could not recover himself, but had to drown there.



24 Mother Holle

There was once a widow who had two daughters---one of whom was pretty
and industrious, whilst the other was ugly and idle. But she was much
fonder of the ugly and idle one, because she was her own daughter;
and the other, who was a step-daughter, was obliged to do all the work,
and be the Cinderella of the house. Every day the poor girl had to sit
by a well, in the highway, and spin and spin till her fingers bled.

Now it happened that one day the shuttle was marked with her blood,
so she dipped it in the well, to wash the mark off; but it dropped out
of her hand and fell to the bottom. She began to weep, and ran to her
step-mother and told her of the mishap. But she scolded her sharply,
and was so merciless as to say, "Since you have let the shuttle fall in,
you must fetch it out again."

So the girl went back to the well, and did not know what to do; and in
the sorrow of her heart she jumped into the well to get the shuttle. She
lost her senses; and when she awoke and came to herself again, she
was in a lovely meadow where the sun was shining and many thousands
of flowers were growing. Along this meadow she went, and at last came
to a baker's oven full of bread, and the bread cried out, "Oh, take me
out! take me out! or I shall burn; I have been baked a long time!" So
she went up to it, and took out all the loaves one after another with
the bread-shovel. After that she went on till she came to a tree covered
with apples, which called out to her, "Oh, shake me! shake me! we apples
are all ripe!" So she shook the tree till the apples fell like rain,
and went on shaking till they were all down, and when she had gathered
them into a heap, she went on her way.

At last she came to a little house, out of which an old woman peeped;
but she had such large teeth that the girl was frightened, and was about
to run away.

But the old woman called out to her, "What are you afraid of, dear
child? Stay with me; if you will do all the work in the house properly,
you shall be the better for it. Only you must take care to make my bed
well, and shake it thoroughly till the feathers fly---for then there is
snow on the earth. I am Mother Holle.

As the old woman spoke so kindly to her, the girl took courage and agreed
to enter her service. She attended to everything to the satisfaction of
her mistress, and always shook her bed so vigorously that the feathers
flew about like snow-flakes. So she had a pleasant life with her; never
an angry word; and boiled or roast meat every day.

She stayed some time with Mother Holle, and then she became sad. At first
she did not know what was the matter with her, but found at length that
it was home-sickness: although she was many thousand times better off
here than at home, still she had a longing to be there. At last she
said to the old woman, "I have a longing for home; and however well
off I am down here, I cannot stay any longer; I must go up again to my
own people." Mother Holle said, "I am pleased that you long for your
home again, and as you have served me so truly, I myself will take you
up again." Thereupon she took her by the hand, and led her to a large
door. The door was opened, and just as the maiden was standing beneath
the doorway, a heavy shower of golden rain fell, and all the gold remained
sticking to her, so that she was completely covered over with it.

"You shall have that because you have been so industrious," said Mother
Holle, and at the same time she gave her back the shuttle which she had
let fall into the well. Thereupon the door closed, and the maiden found
herself up above upon the earth, not far from her mother's house.

And as she went into the yard the cock was standing by the well-side,
and cried---


 "Cock-a-doodle-doo!
 Your golden girl's come back to you!"

So she went in to her mother, and as she arrived thus covered with gold,
she was well received, both by her and her sister.

The girl told all that had happened to her; and as soon as the mother
heard how she had come by so much wealth, she was very anxious to obtain
the same good luck for the ugly and lazy daughter. She had to seat herself
by the well and spin; and in order that her shuttle might be stained with
blood, she stuck her hand into a thorn bush and pricked her finger. Then
she threw her shuttle into the well, and jumped in after it.

She came, like the other, to the beautiful meadow and walked along the
very same path. When she got to the oven the bread again cried, "Oh,
take me out!  take me out! or I shall burn; I have been baked a long
time!" But the lazy thing answered, "As if I had any wish to make myself
dirty?" and on she went. Soon she came to the apple-tree, which cried,
"Oh, shake me! shake me! we apples are all ripe!" But she answered,
"I like that! one of you might fall on my head," and so went on.

When she came to Mother Holle's house she was not afraid, for she had
already heard of her big teeth, and she hired herself to her immediately.

The first day she forced herself to work diligently, and obeyed Mother
Holle when she told her to do anything, for she was thinking of all the
gold that she would give her. But on the second day she began to be lazy,
and on the third day still more so, and then she would not get up in the
morning at all. Neither did she make Mother Holle's bed as she ought,
and did not shake it so as to make the feathers fly up. Mother Holle
was soon tired of this, and gave her notice to leave.  The lazy girl
was willing enough to go, and thought that now the golden rain would
come. Mother Holle led her also to the great door; but while she was
standing beneath it, instead of the gold a big kettleful of pitch was
emptied over her. "That is the reward for your service," said Mother
Holle, and shut the door.

So the lazy girl went home; but she was quite covered with pitch, and
the cock by the well-side, as soon as he saw her, cried out---


 "Cock-a-doodle-doo!
 Your pitchy girl's come back to you!"

But the pitch stuck fast to her, and could not be got off as long as
she lived.



25 The Seven Ravens

There was once a man who had seven sons, and still he had no daughter,
however much he wished for one. At length his wife again gave him hope
of a child, and when it came into the world it was a girl. The joy
was great, but the child was sickly and small, and had to be privately
baptized on account of its weakness. The father sent one of the boys
in haste to the spring to fetch water for the baptism. The other six
went with him, and as each of them wanted to be first to fill it, the
jug fell into the well. There they stood and did not know what to do,
and none of them dared to go home. As they still did not return, the
father grew impatient, and said, "They have certainly forgotten it for
some game, the wicked boys!" He became afraid that the girl would have
to die without being baptized, and in his anger cried, "I wish the boys
were all turned into ravens."  Hardly was the word spoken before he heard
a whirring of wings over his head in the air, looked up and saw seven
coal-black ravens flying away. The parents could not recall the curse,
and however sad they were at the loss of their seven sons, they still
to some extent comforted themselves with their dear little daughter,
who soon grew strong and every day became more beautiful. For a long time
she did not know that she had had brothers, for her parents were careful
not to mention them before her, but one day she accidentally heard some
people saying of herself, "that the girl was certainly beautiful, but
that in reality she was to blame for the misfortune which had befallen
her seven brothers."  Then she was much troubled, and went to her father
and mother and asked if it was true that she had had brothers, and what
had become of them? The parents now dared keep the secret no longer,
but said that what had befallen her brothers was the will of Heaven,
and that her birth had only been the innocent cause. But the maiden
took it to heart daily, and thought she must deliver her brothers. She
had no rest or peace until she set out secretly, and went forth into the
wide world to trace out her brothers and set them free, let it cost what
it might. She took nothing with her but a little ring belonging to her
parents as a keepsake, a loaf of bread against hunger, a little pitcher of
water against thirst, and a little chair as a provision against weariness.

And now she went continually onwards, far, far to the very end of
the world.  Then she came to the sun, but it was too hot and terrible,
and devoured little children. Hastily she ran away, and ran to the moon,
but it was far too cold, and also awful and malicious, and when it saw
the child, it said, "I smell, I smell the flesh of men." On this she ran
swiftly away, and came to the stars, which were kind and good to her,
and each of them sat on its own particular little chair. But the morning
star arose, and gave her the drumstick of a chicken, and said, "If you
thou hast not that drumstick thou canst not open the Glass mountain,
and in the Glass mountain are thy brothers."

The maiden took the drumstick, wrapped it carefully in a cloth, and went
onwards again until she came to the Glass mountain. The door was shut,
and she thought she would take out the drumstick; but when she undid the
cloth, it was empty, and she had lost the good star's present. What was
she now to do? She wished to rescue her brothers, and had no key to the
Glass mountain. The good sister took a knife, cut off one of her little
fingers, put it in the door, and succeeded in opening it. When she had
gone inside, a little dwarf came to meet her, who said, "My child, what
are you looking for?" "I am looking for my brothers, the seven ravens,"
she replied. The dwarf said, "The lord ravens are not at home, but if
you will wait here until they come, step in." Thereupon the little dwarf
carried the ravens' dinner in, on seven little plates, and in seven
little glasses, and the little sister ate a morsel from each plate,
and from each little glass she took a sip, but in the last little glass
she dropped the ring which she had brought away with her.

Suddenly she heard a whirring of wings and a rushing through the air, and
then the little dwarf said, "Now the lord ravens are flying home." Then
they came, and wanted to eat and drink, and looked for their little
plates and glasses. Then said one after the other, "Who has eaten
something from my plate? Who has drunk out of my little glass? It was
a human mouth." And when the seventh came to the bottom of the glass,
the ring rolled against his mouth. Then he looked at it, and saw that it
was a ring belonging to his father and mother, and said, "God grant that
our sister may be here, and then we shall be free." When the maiden, who
was standing behind the door watching, heard that wish, she came forth,
and on this all the ravens were restored to their human form again. And
they embraced and kissed each other, and went joyfully home.



26 Little Red-Cap

Once upon a time there was a dear little girl who was loved by every
one who looked at her, but most of all by her grandmother, and there was
nothing that she would not have given to the child. Once she gave her a
little cap of red velvet, which suited her so well that she would never
wear anything else; so she was always called "Little Red-Cap."

One day her mother said to her, "Come, Little Red-Cap, here is a piece
of cake and a bottle of wine; take them to your grandmother, she is
ill and weak, and they will do her good. Set out before it gets hot,
and when you are going, walk nicely and quietly and do not run off the
path, or you may fall and break the bottle, and then your grandmother
will get nothing; and when you go into her room, don't forget to say,
'Good-morning,' and don't peep into every corner before you do it."

"I will take great care," said Little Red-Cap to her mother, and gave
her hand on it.

The grandmother lived out in the wood, half a league from the village,
and just as Little Red-Cap entered the wood, a wolf met her. Red-Cap did
not know what a wicked creature he was, and was not at all afraid of him.

"Good-day, Little Red-Cap," said he.

"Thank you kindly, wolf."

"Whither away so early, Little Red-Cap?"

"To my grandmother's."

"What have you got in your apron?"

"Cake and wine; yesterday was baking-day, so poor sick grandmother is
to have something good, to make her stronger."

"Where does your grandmother live, Little Red-Cap?"

"A good quarter of a league farther on in the wood; her house stands under
the three large oak-trees, the nut-trees are just below; you surely must
know it," replied Little Red-Cap.

The wolf thought to himself, "What a tender young creature! what a nice
plump mouthful---she will be better to eat than the old woman. I must
act craftily, so as to catch both." So he walked for a short time by the
side of Little Red-Cap, and then he said, "See Little Red-Cap, how pretty
the flowers are about here---why do you not look round? I believe, too,
that you do not hear how sweetly the little birds are singing; you walk
gravely along as if you were going to school, while everything else out
here in the wood is merry."

Little Red-Cap raised her eyes, and when she saw the sunbeams dancing here
and there through the trees, and pretty flowers growing everywhere, she
thought, "Suppose I take grandmother a fresh nosegay; that would please
her too. It is so early in the day that I shall still get there in good
time;" and so she ran from the path into the wood to look for flowers. And
whenever she had picked one, she fancied that she saw a still prettier one
farther on, and ran after it, and so got deeper and deeper into the wood.

Meanwhile the wolf ran straight to the grandmother's house and knocked
at the door.

"Who is there?"

"Little Red-Cap," replied the wolf. "She is bringing cake and wine;
open the door."

"Lift the latch," called out the grandmother, "I am too weak, and cannot
get up."

The wolf lifted the latch, the door flew open, and without saying a word
he went straight to the grandmother's bed, and devoured her. Then he put
on her clothes, dressed himself in her cap, laid himself in bed and drew
the curtains.

Little Red-Cap, however, had been running about picking flowers, and when
she had gathered so many that she could carry no more, she remembered
her grandmother, and set out on the way to her.

She was surprised to find the cottage-door standing open, and when
she went into the room, she had such a strange feeling that she said
to herself, "Oh dear!  how uneasy I feel to-day, and at other times I
like being with grandmother so much." She called out, "Good morning,"
but received no answer; so she went to the bed and drew back the
curtains. There lay her grandmother with her cap pulled far over her face,
and looking very strange.

"Oh! grandmother," she said, "what big ears you have!"

"The better to hear you with, my child," was the reply.

"But, grandmother, what big eyes you have!" she said.

"The better to see you with, my dear."

"But, grandmother, what large hands you have!"

"The better to hug you with."

"Oh! but, grandmother, what a terrible big mouth you have!"

"The better to eat you with!"

And scarcely had the wolf said this, than with one bound he was out of
bed and swallowed up Red-Cap.

When the wolf had appeased his appetite, he lay down again in the bed,
fell asleep and began to snore very loud. The huntsman was just passing
the house, and thought to himself, "How the old woman is snoring! I must
just see if she wants anything." So he went into the room, and when he
came to the bed, he saw that the wolf was lying in it. "Do I find thee
here, thou old sinner!" said he. "I have long sought thee!" Then just as
he was going to fire at him, it occurred to him that the wolf might have
devoured the grandmother, and that she might still be saved, so he did not
fire, but took a pair of scissors, and began to cut open the stomach of
the sleeping wolf. When he had made two snips, he saw the little Red-Cap
shining, and then he made two snips more, and the little girl sprang out,
crying, "Ah, how frightened I have been! How dark it was inside the wolf;"
and after that the aged grandmother came out alive also, but scarcely able
to breathe.  Red-Cap, however, quickly fetched great stones with which
they filled the wolf's body, and when he awoke, he wanted to run away,
but the stones were so heavy that he fell down at once, and fell dead.

Then all three were delighted. The huntsman drew off the wolf's skin
and went home with it; the grandmother ate the cake and drank the wine
which Red-Cap had brought, and revived, but Red-Cap thought to herself,
"As long as I live, I will never by myself leave the path, to run into
the wood, when my mother has forbidden me to do so."


                            * * * * * * *

It is also related that once when Red-Cap was again taking cakes to
the old grandmother, another wolf spoke to her, and tried to entice her
from the path.  Red-Cap, however, was on her guard, and went straight
forward on her way, and told her grandmother that she had met the wolf,
and that he had said "good-morning" to her, but with such a wicked look
in his eyes, that if they had not been on the public road she was certain
he would have eaten her up. "Well," said the grandmother, "we will shut
the door, that he may not come in." Soon afterwards the wolf knocked,
and cried, "Open the door, grandmother, I am little Red-Cap, and am
fetching you some cakes." But they did not speak, or open the door, so
the grey-beard stole twice or thrice round the house, and at last jumped
on the roof, intending to wait until Red-Cap went home in the evening,
and then to steal after her and devour her in the darkness. But the
grandmother saw what was in his thoughts. In front of the house was a
great stone trough, so she said to the child, "Take the pail, Red-Cap;
I made some sausages yesterday, so carry the water in which I boiled
them to the trough."  Red-Cap carried until the great trough was quite
full. Then the smell of the sausages reached the wolf, and he sniffed
and peeped down, and at last stretched out his neck so far that he could
no longer keep his footing and began to slip, and slipped down from the
roof straight into the great trough, and was drowned. But Red-Cap went
joyously home, and never did anything to harm any one.



27 The Bremen Town-Musicians

A certain man had a donkey, which had carried the corn-sacks to the
mill indefatigably for many a long year; but his strength was going,
and he was growing more and more unfit for work. Then his master began
to consider how he might best save his keep; but the donkey, seeing
that no good wind was blowing, ran away and set out on the road to
Bremen. "There," he thought, "I can surely be town-musician." When he
had walked some distance, he found a hound lying on the road, gasping
like one who had run till he was tired. "What are you gasping so for,
you big fellow?" asked the donkey.

"Ah," replied the hound, "as I am old, and daily grow weaker, and no
longer can hunt, my master wanted to kill me, so I took to flight;
but now how am I to earn my bread?"

"I tell you what," said the donkey, "I am going to Bremen, and shall be
town-musician there; go with me and engage yourself also as a musician. I
will play the lute, and you shall beat the kettledrum."

The hound agreed, and on they went.

Before long they came to a cat, sitting on the path, with a face like
three rainy days! "Now then, old shaver, what has gone askew with
you?" asked the donkey.

"Who can be merry when his neck is in danger?" answered the cat. "Because
I am now getting old, and my teeth are worn to stumps, and I prefer to
sit by the fire and spin, rather than hunt about after mice, my mistress
wanted to drown me, so I ran away. But now good advice is scarce. Where
am I to go?"

"Go with us to Bremen. You understand night-music, you can be a
town-musician."

The cat thought well of it, and went with them. After this the three
fugitives came to a farm-yard, where the cock was sitting upon the gate,
crowing with all his might. "Your crow goes through and through one,"
said the donkey. "What is the matter?"

"I have been foretelling fine weather, because it is the day on which Our
Lady washes the Christ-child's little shirts, and wants to dry them," said
the cock; "but guests are coming for Sunday, so the housewife has no pity,
and has told the cook that she intends to eat me in the soup to-morrow,
and this evening I am to have my head cut off. Now I am crowing at full
pitch while I can."

"Ah, but red-comb," said the donkey, "you had better come away with
us. We are going to Bremen; you can find something better than death
everywhere: you have a good voice, and if we make music together it must
have some quality!"

The cock agreed to this plan, and all four went on together. They could
not, however, reach the city of Bremen in one day, and in the evening
they came to a forest where they meant to pass the night. The donkey and
the hound laid themselves down under a large tree, the cat and the cock
settled themselves in the branches; but the cock flew right to the top,
where he was most safe. Before he went to sleep he looked round on all
four sides, and thought he saw in the distance a little spark burning;
so he called out to his companions that there must be a house not far
off, for he saw a light. The donkey said, "If so, we had better get up
and go on, for the shelter here is bad." The hound thought that a few
bones with some meat on would do him good too!

So they made their way to the place where the light was, and soon saw it
shine brighter and grow larger, until they came to a well-lighted robber's
house. The donkey, as the biggest, went to the window and looked in.

"What do you see, my grey-horse?" asked the cock. "What do I
see?" answered the donkey; "a table covered with good things to eat and
drink, and robbers sitting at it enjoying themselves." "That would be
the sort of thing for us," said the cock. "Yes, yes; ah, how I wish we
were there!" said the donkey.

Then the animals took counsel together how they should manage to drive
away the robbers, and at last they thought of a plan. The donkey was
to place himself with his fore-feet upon the window-ledge, the hound
was to jump on the donkey's back, the cat was to climb upon the dog,
and lastly the cock was to fly up and perch upon the head of the cat.

When this was done, at a given signal, they began to perform their
music together: the donkey brayed, the hound barked, the cat mewed,
and the cock crowed; then they burst through the window into the room,
so that the glass clattered! At this horrible din, the robbers sprang up,
thinking no otherwise than that a ghost had come in, and fled in a great
fright out into the forest. The four companions now sat down at the table,
well content with what was left, and ate as if they were going to fast
for a month.

As soon as the four minstrels had done, they put out the light, and each
sought for himself a sleeping-place according to his nature and to what
suited him. The donkey laid himself down upon some straw in the yard,
the hound behind the door, the cat upon the hearth near the warm ashes,
and the cock perched himself upon a beam of the roof; and being tired
from their long walk, they soon went to sleep.

When it was past midnight, and the robbers saw from afar that the light
was no longer burning in their house, and all appeared quiet, the captain
said, "We ought not to have let ourselves be frightened out of our wits;"
and ordered one of them to go and examine the house.

The messenger finding all still, went into the kitchen to light a candle,
and, taking the glistening fiery eyes of the cat for live coals, he held
a lucifer-match to them to light it. But the cat did not understand the
joke, and flew in his face, spitting and scratching. He was dreadfully
frightened, and ran to the back-door, but the dog, who lay there sprang
up and bit his leg; and as he ran across the yard by the straw-heap,
the donkey gave him a smart kick with its hind foot. The cock, too,
who had been awakened by the noise, and had become lively, cried down
from the beam, "Cock-a-doodle-doo!"

Then the robber ran back as fast as he could to his captain, and said,
"Ah, there is a horrible witch sitting in the house, who spat on me
and scratched my face with her long claws; and by the door stands a man
with a knife, who stabbed me in the leg; and in the yard there lies a
black monster, who beat me with a wooden club; and above, upon the roof,
sits the judge, who called out, 'Bring the rogue here to me!' so I got
away as well as I could."

After this the robbers did not trust themselves in the house again; but
it suited the four musicians of Bremen so well that they did not care
to leave it any more. And the mouth of him who last told this story is
still warm.



28 The Singing Bone

In a certain country there was once great lamentation over a wild boar
that laid waste the farmer's fields, killed the cattle, and ripped
up people's bodies with his tusks. The King promised a large reward
to anyone who would free the land from this plague; but the beast was
so big and strong that no one dared to go near the forest in which it
lived. At last the King gave notice that whosoever should capture or
kill the wild boar should have his only daughter to wife.

Now there lived in the country two brothers, sons of a poor man, who
declared themselves willing to undertake the hazardous enterprise;
the elder, who was crafty and shrewd, out of pride; the younger, who
was innocent and simple, from a kind heart. The King said, "In order
that you may be the more sure of finding the beast, you must go into
the forest from opposite sides." So the elder went in on the west side,
and the younger on the east.

When the younger had gone a short way, a little man stepped up to him. He
held in his hand a black spear and said, "I give you this spear because
your heart is pure and good; with this you can boldly attack the wild
boar, and it will do you no harm."

He thanked the little man, shouldered the spear, and went on fearlessly.

Before long he saw the beast, which rushed at him; but he held the spear
towards it, and in its blind fury it ran so swiftly against it that its
heart was cloven in twain. Then he took the monster on his back and went
homewards with it to the King.

As he came out at the other side of the wood, there stood at the entrance
a house where people were making merry with wine and dancing. His elder
brother had gone in here, and, thinking that after all the boar would
not run away from him, was going to drink until he felt brave. But when
he saw his young brother coming out of the wood laden with his booty,
his envious, evil heart gave him no peace. He called out to him, "Come
in, dear brother, rest and refresh yourself with a cup of wine."

The youth, who suspected no evil, went in and told him about the good
little man who had given him the spear wherewith he had slain the boar.

The elder brother kept him there until the evening, and then they went
away together, and when in the darkness they came to a bridge over
a brook, the elder brother let the other go first; and when he was
half-way across he gave him such a blow from behind that he fell down
dead. He buried him beneath the bridge, took the boar, and carried it to
the King, pretending that he had killed it; whereupon he obtained the
King's daughter in marriage. And when his younger brother did not come
back he said, "The boar must have killed him," and every one believed it.

But as nothing remains hidden from God, so this black deed also was to
come to light.

Years afterwards a shepherd was driving his herd across the bridge, and
saw lying in the sand beneath, a snow-white little bone. He thought that
it would make a good mouth-piece, so he clambered down, picked it up,
and cut out of it a mouth-piece for his horn. But when he blew through
it for the first time, to his great astonishment, the bone began of its
own accord to sing:


 "Ah, friend, thou blowest upon my bone!
 Long have I lain beside the water;
 My brother slew me for the boar,
 And took for his wife the King's young daughter."

"What a wonderful horn!" said the shepherd; "it sings by itself; I must
take it to my lord the King." And when he came with it to the King the
horn again began to sing its little song. The King understood it all,
and caused the ground below the bridge to be dug up, and then the whole
skeleton of the murdered man came to light. The wicked brother could not
deny the deed, and was sewn up in a sack and drowned. But the bones of
the murdered man were laid to rest in a beautiful tomb in the churchyard.



29 The Devil With the Three Golden Hairs

There was once a poor woman who gave birth to a little son; and as he came
into the world with a caul on, it was predicted that in his fourteenth
year he would have the King's daughter for his wife. It happened that
soon afterwards the King came into the village, and no one knew that
he was the King, and when he asked the people what news there was, they
answered, "A child has just been born with a caul on; whatever any one
so born undertakes turns out well. It is prophesied, too, that in his
fourteenth year he will have the King's daughter for his wife."

The King, who had a bad heart, and was angry about the prophecy, went
to the parents, and, seeming quite friendly, said, "You poor people, let
me have your child, and I will take care of it." At first they refused,
but when the stranger offered them a large amount of gold for it, and
they thought, "It is a luck-child, and everything must turn out well
for it," they at last consented, and gave him the child.

The King put it in a box and rode away with it until he came to a deep
piece of water; then he threw the box into it and thought, "I have freed
my daughter from her unlooked-for suitor."

The box, however, did not sink, but floated like a boat, and not a drop
of water made its way into it. And it floated to within two miles of the
King's chief city, where there was a mill, and it came to a stand-still
at the mill-dam. A miller's boy, who by good luck was standing there,
noticed it and pulled it out with a hook, thinking that he had found a
great treasure, but when he opened it there lay a pretty boy inside, quite
fresh and lively. He took him to the miller and his wife, and as they
had no children they were glad, and said, "God has given him to us." They
took great care of the foundling, and he grew up in all goodness.

It happened that once in a storm, the King went into the mill, and he
asked the mill-folk if the tall youth was their son. "No," answered they,
"he's a foundling.  Fourteen years ago he floated down to the mill-dam
in a box, and the mill-boy pulled him out of the water."

Then the King knew that it was none other than the luck-child which he
had thrown into the water, and he said, "My good people, could not the
youth take a letter to the Queen; I will give him two gold pieces as a
reward?" "Just as the King commands," answered they, and they told the
boy to hold himself in readiness. Then the King wrote a letter to the
Queen, wherein he said, "As soon as the boy arrives with this letter,
let him be killed and buried, and all must be done before I come home."

The boy set out with this letter; but he lost his way, and in the
evening came to a large forest. In the darkness he saw a small light;
he went towards it and reached a cottage. When he went in, an old woman
was sitting by the fire quite alone.  She started when she saw the boy,
and said, "Whence do you come, and whither are you going?" "I come from
the mill," he answered, "and wish to go to the Queen, to whom I am taking
a letter; but as I have lost my way in the forest I should like to stay
here over night." "You poor boy," said the woman, "you have come into a
den of thieves, and when they come home they will kill you." "Let them
come," said the boy, "I am not afraid; but I am so tired that I cannot
go any farther:" and he stretched himself upon a bench and fell asleep.

Soon afterwards the robbers came, and angrily asked what strange boy was
lying there? "Ah," said the old woman, "it is an innocent child who has
lost himself in the forest, and out of pity I have let him come in; he has
to take a letter to the Queen." The robbers opened the letter and read it,
and in it was written that the boy as soon as he arrived should be put
to death. Then the hard-hearted robbers felt pity, and their leader tore
up the letter and wrote another, saying, that as soon as the boy came,
he should be married at once to the King's daughter. Then they let him
lie quietly on the bench until the next morning, and when he awoke they
gave him the letter, and showed him the right way.

And the Queen, when she had received the letter and read it, did as was
written in it, and had a splendid wedding-feast prepared, and the King's
daughter was married to the luck-child, and as the youth was handsome
and agreeable she lived with him in joy and contentment.

After some time the King returned to his palace and saw that the prophecy
was fulfilled, and the luck-child married to his daughter. "How has that
come to pass?" said he; "I gave quite another order in my letter."

So the Queen gave him the letter, and said that he might see for himself
what was written in it. The King read the letter and saw quite well
that it had been exchanged for the other. He asked the youth what had
become of the letter entrusted to him, and why he had brought another
instead of it. "I know nothing about it," answered he; "it must have
been changed in the night, when I slept in the forest." The King said
in a passion, "You shall not have everything quite so much your own way;
whosoever marries my daughter must fetch me from hell three golden hairs
from the head of the devil; bring me what I want, and you shall keep my
daughter." In this way the King hoped to be rid of him for ever. But the
luck-child answered, "I will fetch the golden hairs, I am not afraid of
the Devil;" thereupon he took leave of them and began his journey.

The road led him to a large town, where the watchman by the gates asked
him what his trade was, and what he knew. "I know everything," answered
the luck-child. "Then you can do us a favour," said the watchman, "if
you will tell us why our market-fountain, which once flowed with wine
has become dry, and no longer gives even water?" "That you shall know,"
answered he; "only wait until I come back."

Then he went farther and came to another town, and there also the
gatekeeper asked him what was his trade, and what he knew. "I know
everything," answered he. "Then you can do us a favour and tell us why
a tree in our town which once bore golden apples now does not even put
forth leaves?" "You shall know that," answered he; "only wait until I
come back."

Then he went on and came to a wide river over which he must go. The
ferryman asked him what his trade was, and what he knew. "I know
everything," answered he. "Then you can do me a favour," said the
ferryman, "and tell me why I must always be rowing backwards and forwards,
and am never set free?"  "You shall know that," answered he; "only wait
until I come back."

When he had crossed the water he found the entrance to Hell. It was black
and sooty within, and the Devil was not at home, but his grandmother
was sitting in a large arm-chair. "What do you want?" said she to him,
but she did not look so very wicked. "I should like to have three
golden hairs from the devil's head," answered he, "else I cannot keep
my wife." "That is a good deal to ask for," said she; "if the devil
comes home and finds you, it will cost you your life; but as I pity you,
I will see if I cannot help you."

She changed him into an ant and said, "Creep into the folds of my
dress, you will be safe there." "Yes," answered he, "so far, so good;
but there are three things besides that I want to know: why a fountain
which once flowed with wine has become dry, and no longer gives even
water; why a tree which once bore golden apples does not even put forth
leaves; and why a ferry-man must always be going backwards and forwards,
and is never set free?"

"Those are difficult questions," answered she, "but only be silent and
quiet and pay attention to what the devil says when I pull out the three
golden hairs."

As the evening came on, the devil returned home. No sooner had he entered
than he noticed that the air was not pure. "I smell man's flesh," said he;
"all is not right here." Then he pried into every corner, and searched,
but could not find anything. His grandmother scolded him. "It has just
been swept," said she, "and everything put in order, and now you are
upsetting it again; you have always got man's flesh in your nose. Sit
down and eat your supper."

When he had eaten and drunk he was tired, and laid his head in his
grandmother's lap, and before long he was fast asleep, snoring and
breathing heavily. Then the old woman took hold of a golden hair,
pulled it out, and laid it down near her. "Oh!" cried the devil, "what
are you doing?" "I have had a bad dream," answered the grandmother,
"so I seized hold of your hair." "What did you dream then?" said the
devil. "I dreamed that a fountain in a market-place from which wine once
flowed was dried up, and not even water would flow out of it; what is
the cause of it?" "Oh, ho! if they did but know it," answered the devil;
"there is a toad sitting under a stone in the well; if they killed it,
the wine would flow again."

He went to sleep again and snored until the windows shook. Then she
pulled the second hair out. "Ha! what are you doing?" cried the devil
angrily. "Do not take it ill," said she, "I did it in a dream." "What have
you dreamt this time?" asked he.  "I dreamt that in a certain kingdom
there stood an apple-tree which had once borne golden apples, but now
would not even bear leaves. What, think you, was the reason?" "Oh! if
they did but know," answered the devil. "A mouse is gnawing at the root;
if they killed this they would have golden apples again, but if it gnaws
much longer the tree will wither altogether. But leave me alone with
your dreams: if you disturb me in my sleep again you will get a box on
the ear."

The grandmother spoke gently to him until he fell asleep again and
snored. Then she took hold of the third golden hair and pulled it out. The
devil jumped up, roared out, and would have treated her ill if she had
not quieted him once more and said, "Who can help bad dreams?" "What
was the dream, then?" asked he, and was quite curious. "I dreamt of a
ferry-man who complained that he must always ferry from one side to the
other, and was never released. What is the cause of it?" "Ah! the fool,"
answered the devil; "when any one comes and wants to go across he must
put the oar in his hand, and the other man will have to ferry and he will
be free." As the grandmother had plucked out the three golden hairs,
and the three questions were answered, she let the old serpent alone,
and he slept until daybreak.

When the devil had gone out again the old woman took the ant out of the
folds of her dress, and gave the luck-child his human shape again. "There
are the three golden hairs for you," said she. "What the Devil said
to your three questions, I suppose you heard?" "Yes," answered he,
"I heard, and will take care to remember." "You have what you want,"
said she, "and now you can go your way." He thanked the old woman for
helping him in his need, and left hell well content that everything had
turned out so fortunately.

When he came to the ferry-man he was expected to give the promised answer.
"Ferry me across first," said the luck-child, "and then I will tell
you how you can be set free," and when he reached the opposite shore he
gave him the devil's advice: "Next time any one comes, who wants to be
ferried over, just put the oar in his hand."

He went on and came to the town wherein stood the unfruitful tree,
and there too the watchman wanted an answer. So he told him what he
had heard from the devil: "Kill the mouse which is gnawing at its root,
and it will again bear golden apples." Then the watchman thanked him,
and gave him as a reward two asses laden with gold, which followed him.

At last he came to the town whose well was dry. He told the watchman what
the devil had said: "A toad is in the well beneath a stone; you must
find it and kill it, and the well will again give wine in plenty." The
watchman thanked him, and also gave him two asses laden with gold.

At last the luck-child got home to his wife, who was heartily glad to see
him again, and to hear how well he had prospered in everything. To the
King he took what he had asked for, the devil's three golden hairs, and
when the King saw the four asses laden with gold he was quite content,
and said, "Now all the conditions are fulfilled, and you can keep my
daughter. But tell me, dear son-in-law, where did all that gold come
from? this is tremendous wealth!" "I was rowed across a river," answered
he, "and got it there; it lies on the shore instead of sand." "Can I too
fetch some of it?" said the King; and he was quite eager about it. "As
much as you like," answered he. "There is a ferry-man on the river; let
him ferry you over, and you can fill your sacks on the other side." The
greedy King set out in all haste, and when he came to the river he
beckoned to the ferry-man to put him across. The ferry-man came and bade
him get in, and when they got to the other shore he put the oar in his
hand and sprang out. But from this time forth the King had to ferry,
as a punishment for his sins. Perhaps he is ferrying still? If he is,
it is because no one has taken the oar from him.



30 The Louse and the Flea

A louse and a flea kept house together and were brewing beer in an
egg-shell.  Then the little louse fell in and burnt herself. On this
the little flea began to scream loudly. Then said the little room-door,
"Little flea, why art thou screaming?"  "Because the louse has burnt
herself."

Then the little door began to creak. On this a little broom in the corner
said, "Why art thou creaking, little door?" "Have I not reason to creak?"


 "The little louse has burnt herself,
 The little flea is weeping."

So the little broom began to sweep frantically. Then a little cart passed
by and said, "Why art thou sweeping, little broom?" "Have I not reason
to sweep?"


 "The little louse has burnt herself,
 The little flea is weeping,

 The little door is creaking."

So the little cart said, "Then I will run," and began to run wildly. Then
said the ash-heap by which it ran, "Why art thou running so, little
cart?" "Have I not reason to run?"


 "The little louse has burnt herself,
 The little flea is weeping,

 The little door is creaking,
 The little broom is sweeping."

The ash-heap said, "Then I will burn furiously," and began to burn in
clear flames. A little tree stood near the ash-heap and said, "Ash-heap,
why art thou burning?" "Have I not reason to burn?"


 "The little louse has burnt herself,
 The little flea is weeping,

 The little door is creaking,
 The little broom is sweeping,

 The little cart is running."

The little tree said, "Then I will shake myself," and began to shake
herself so that all her leaves fell off; a girl who came up with her
water-pitcher saw that, and said, "Little tree, why art thou shaking
thyself?" "Have I not reason to shake myself?"


 "The little louse has burnt herself,
 The little flea is weeping,

 The little door is creaking,
 The little broom is sweeping,

 The little cart is running,
 The little ash-heap is burning."


  On this the girl said, "Then I will break my little water-pitcher,"
and she broke her little water-pitcher. Then said the little spring from
which ran the water, "Girl, why art thou breaking thy water-jug?" "Have
I not reason to break my water-jug?"


 "The little louse has burnt herself,
 The little flea is weeping,

 The little door is creaking,
 The little broom is sweeping,

 The little cart is running,
 The little ash-heap is burning,

 The little tree is shaking itself."

"Oh, ho!" said the spring, "then I will begin to flow," and began to
flow violently.  And in the water everything was drowned, the girl,
the little tree, the little ash-heap, the little cart, the broom, the
little door, the little flea, the little louse, all together.



31 The Girl Without Hands

A certain miller had little by little fallen into poverty, and had nothing
left but his mill and a large apple-tree behind it. Once when he had gone
into the forest to fetch wood, an old man stepped up to him whom he had
never seen before, and said, "Why dost thou plague thyself with cutting
wood, I will make thee rich, if thou wilt promise me what is standing
behind thy mill?" "What can that be but my apple-tree?" thought the
miller, and said, "Yes," and gave a written promise to the stranger. He,
however, laughed mockingly and said, "When three years have passed,
I will come and carry away what belongs to me," and then he went.
When the miller got home, his wife came to meet him and said, "Tell
me, miller, from whence comes this sudden wealth into our house? All
at once every box and chest was filled; no one brought it in, and I
know not how it happened." He answered, "It comes from a stranger who
met me in the forest, and promised me great treasure. I, in return,
have promised him what stands behind the mill; we can very well give
him the big apple-tree for it." "Ah, husband," said the terrified wife,
"that must have been the devil! He did not mean the apple-tree, but our
daughter, who was standing behind the mill sweeping the yard."

The miller's daughter was a beautiful, pious girl, and lived through
the three years in the fear of God and without sin. When therefore the
time was over, and the day came when the Evil-one was to fetch her, she
washed herself clean, and made a circle round herself with chalk. The
devil appeared quite early, but he could not come near to her. Angrily, he
said to the miller, "Take all water away from her, that she may no longer
be able to wash herself, for otherwise I have no power over her." The
miller was afraid, and did so. The next morning the devil came again,
but she had wept on her hands, and they were quite clean. Again he could
not get near her, and furiously said to the miller, "Cut her hands off, or
else I cannot get the better of her." The miller was shocked and answered,
"How could I cut off my own child's hands?" Then the Evil-one threatened
him and said, "If thou dost not do it thou art mine, and I will take thee
thyself." The father became alarmed, and promised to obey him. So he went
to the girl and said, "My child, if I do not cut off both thine hands,
the devil will carry me away, and in my terror I have promised to do
it. Help me in my need, and forgive me the harm I do thee." She replied,
"Dear father, do with me what you will, I am your child." Thereupon
she laid down both her hands, and let them be cut off. The devil came
for the third time, but she had wept so long and so much on the stumps,
that after all they were quite clean. Then he had to give in, and had
lost all right over her.

The miller said to her, "I have by means of thee received such great
wealth that I will keep thee most delicately as long as thou livest." But
she replied, "Here I cannot stay, I will go forth, compassionate people
will give me as much as I require." Thereupon she caused her maimed arms
to be bound to her back, and by sunrise she set out on her way, and walked
the whole day until night fell. Then she came to a royal garden, and
by the shimmering of the moon she saw that trees covered with beautiful
fruits grew in it, but she could not enter, for there was much water round
about it. And as she had walked the whole day and not eaten one mouthful,
and hunger tormented her, she thought, "Ah, if I were but inside, that I
might eat of the fruit, else must I die of hunger!" Then she knelt down,
called on God the Lord, and prayed. And suddenly an angel came towards
her, who made a dam in the water, so that the moat became dry and she
could walk through it. And now she went into the garden and the angel
went with her. She saw a tree covered with beautiful pears, but they
were all counted.  Then she went to them, and to still her hunger, ate
one with her mouth from the tree, but no more. The gardener was watching;
but as the angel was standing by, he was afraid and thought the maiden was
a spirit, and was silent, neither did he dare to cry out, or to speak to
the spirit. When she had eaten the pear, she was satisfied, and went and
concealed herself among the bushes. The King to whom the garden belonged,
came down to it next morning, and counted, and saw that one of the pears
was missing, and asked the gardener what had become of it, as it was not
lying beneath the tree, but was gone. Then answered the gardener, "Last
night, a spirit came in, who had no hands, and ate off one of the pears
with its mouth." The King said, "How did the spirit get over the water,
and where did it go after it had eaten the pear?" The gardener answered,
"Some one came in a snow-white garment from heaven who made a dam, and
kept back the water, that the spirit might walk through the moat. And as
it must have been an angel, I was afraid, and asked no questions, and did
not cry out. When the spirit had eaten the pear, it went back again." The
King said, "If it be as thou sayest, I will watch with thee to-night."

When it grew dark the King came into the garden and brought a priest with
him, who was to speak to the spirit. All three seated themselves beneath
the tree and watched. At midnight the maiden came creeping out of the
thicket, went to the tree, and again ate one pear off it with her mouth,
and beside her stood the angel in white garments. Then the priest went
out to them and said, "Comest thou from heaven or from earth? Art thou a
spirit, or a human being?" She replied, "I am no spirit, but an unhappy
mortal deserted by all but God." The King said, "If thou art forsaken by
all the world, yet will I not forsake thee." He took her with him into
his royal palace, and as she was so beautiful and good, he loved her
with all his heart, had silver hands made for her, and took her to wife.

After a year the King had to take the field, so he commended his
young Queen to the care of his mother and said, "If she is brought to
bed take care of her, nurse her well, and tell me of it at once in a
letter." Then she gave birth to a fine boy. So the old mother made haste
to write and announce the joyful news to him. But the messenger rested
by a brook on the way, and as he was fatigued by the great distance,
he fell asleep. Then came the Devil, who was always seeking to injure
the good Queen, and exchanged the letter for another, in which was
written that the Queen had brought a monster into the world. When the
King read the letter he was shocked and much troubled, but he wrote in
answer that they were to take great care of the Queen and nurse her well
until his arrival. The messenger went back with the letter, but rested
at the same place and again fell asleep. Then came the Devil once more,
and put a different letter in his pocket, in which it was written that
they were to put the Queen and her child to death.  The old mother was
terribly shocked when she received the letter, and could not believe
it. She wrote back again to the King, but received no other answer,
because each time the Devil substituted a false letter, and in the last
letter it was also written that she was to preserve the Queen's tongue
and eyes as a token that she had obeyed.

But the old mother wept to think such innocent blood was to be shed,
and had a hind brought by night and cut out her tongue and eyes, and
kept them. Then said she to the Queen, "I cannot have thee killed
as the King commands, but here thou mayst stay no longer. Go forth
into the wide world with thy child, and never come here again." The
poor woman tied her child on her back, and went away with eyes full
of tears. She came into a great wild forest, and then she fell on her
knees and prayed to God, and the angel of the Lord appeared to her and
led her to a little house on which was a sign with the words, "Here all
dwell free." A snow-white maiden came out of the little house and said,
"Welcome, Lady Queen," and conducted her inside. Then they unbound the
little boy from her back, and held him to her breast that he might feed,
and laid him in a beautifully-made little bed. Then said the poor woman,
"From whence knowest thou that I was a queen?" The white maiden answered,
"I am an angel sent by God, to watch over thee and thy child." The Queen
stayed seven years in the little house, and was well cared for, and by
God's grace, because of her piety, her hands which had been cut off,
grew once more.

At last the King came home again from the war, and his first wish was
to see his wife and the child. Then his aged mother began to weep and
said, "Thou wicked man, why didst thou write to me that I was to take
those two innocent lives?"  and she showed him the two letters which
the Evil-one had forged, and then continued, "I did as thou badest me,"
and she showed the tokens, the tongue and eyes. Then the King began to
weep for his poor wife and his little son so much more bitterly than
she was doing, that the aged mother had compassion on him and said,
"Be at peace, she still lives; I secretly caused a hind to be killed,
and took these tokens from it; but I bound the child to thy wife's back
and bade her go forth into the wide world, and made her promise never to
come back here again, because thou wert so angry with her." Then spoke
the King, "I will go as far as the sky is blue, and will neither eat
nor drink until I have found again my dear wife and my child, if in the
meantime they have not been killed, or died of hunger."

Thereupon the King travelled about for seven long years, and sought her
in every cleft of the rocks and in every cave, but he found her not,
and thought she had died of want. During the whole of this time he
neither ate nor drank, but God supported him. At length he came into
a great forest, and found therein the little house whose sign was,
"Here all dwell free." Then forth came the white maiden, took him by the
hand, led him in, and said, "Welcome, Lord King," and asked him from
whence he came. He answered, "Soon shall I have travelled about for
the space of seven years, and I seek my wife and her child, but cannot
find them." The angel offered him meat and drink, but he did not take
anything, and only wished to rest a little. Then he lay down to sleep,
and put a handkerchief over his face.

Thereupon the angel went into the chamber where the Queen sat with her
son, whom she usually called "Sorrowful," and said to her, "Go out with
thy child, thy husband hath come." So she went to the place where he
lay, and the handkerchief fell from his face. Then said she, "Sorrowful,
pick up thy father's handkerchief, and cover his face again." The child
picked it up, and put it over his face again. The King in his sleep
heard what passed, and had pleasure in letting the handkerchief fall
once more. But the child grew impatient, and said, "Dear mother, how
can I cover my father's face when I have no father in this world? I have
learnt to say the prayer, 'Our Father, which art in Heaven,' thou hast
told me that my father was in Heaven, and was the good God, and how can
I know a wild man like this? He is not my father." When the King heard
that, he got up, and asked who they were. Then said she, "I am thy wife,
and that is thy son, Sorrowful." And he saw her living hands, and said,
"My wife had silver hands." She answered, "The good God has caused my
natural hands to grow again;" and the angel went into the inner room,
and brought the silver hands, and showed them to him. Hereupon he knew
for a certainty that it was his dear wife and his dear child, and he
kissed them, and was glad, and said, "A heavy stone has fallen from
off mine heart." Then the angel of God gave them one meal with her,
and after that they went home to the King's aged mother. There were
great rejoicings everywhere, and the King and Queen were married again,
and lived contentedly to their happy end.



32 Clever Hans

The mother of Hans said, "Whither away, Hans?" Hans answered, "To
Grethel."  "Behave well, Hans." "Oh, I'll behave well. Good-bye,
mother." "Good-bye, Hans." Hans comes to Grethel, "Good day,
Grethel." "Good day, Hans. What dost thou bring that is good?" "I bring
nothing, I want to have something given me." Grethel presents Hans with
a needle. Hans says, "Good-bye, Grethel."  "Good-bye, Hans."

Hans takes the needle, sticks it into a hay-cart, and follows the
cart home.  "Good evening, mother." "Good evening, Hans. Where hast
thou been?" "With Grethel." "What didst thou take her?" "Took nothing;
had something given me."  "What did Grethel give thee?" "Gave me a
needle." "Where is the needle, Hans?"  "Stuck it in the hay-cart." "That
was ill done, Hans. Thou shouldst have stuck the needle in thy
sleeve." "Never mind, I'll do better next time."

"Whither away, Hans?" "To Grethel, mother." "Behave well, Hans." "Oh,
I'll behave well. Good-bye, mother." "Good-bye, Hans."

Hans comes to Grethel. "Good day, Grethel." "Good day, Hans. What
dost thou bring that is good?" "I bring nothing; I want to have
something given to me."  Grethel presents Hans with a knife. "Good-bye,
Grethel." "Good-bye Hans."  Hans takes the knife, sticks it in his
sleeve, and goes home. "Good evening, mother." "Good evening, Hans. Where
hast thou been?" "With Grethel." "What didst thou take her?" "Took her
nothing, she gave me something." "What did Grethel give thee?" "Gave me
a knife." "Where is the knife, Hans?" "Stuck in my sleeve." "That's
ill done, Hans, thou shouldst have put the knife in thy pocket."
"Never mind, will do better next time." "Whither away, Hans?" "To Grethel,
mother." "Behave well, Hans." "Oh, I'll behave well. Good-bye, mother."
"Good-bye, Hans."

Hans comes to Grethel. "Good day, Grethel." "Good day, Hans. What
good thing dost thou bring?" "I bring nothing, I want something
given me." Grethel presents Hans with a young goat. "Good-bye,
Grethel." "Good-bye, Hans."  Hans takes the goat, ties its legs, and
puts it in his pocket. When he gets home it is suffocated. "Good evening,
mother." "Good evening, Hans. Where hast thou been?" "With Grethel." "What
didst thou take her?" "Took nothing, she gave me something." "What did
Grethel give thee?" "She gave me a goat." "Where is the goat, Hans?" "Put
it in my pocket." "That was ill done, Hans, thou shouldst have put a
rope round the goat's neck." "Never mind, will do better next time."

"Whither away, Hans?" "To Grethel, mother." "Behave well, Hans." "Oh,
I'll behave well. Good-bye, mother." "Good-bye, Hans." Hans comes to
Grethel.  "Good day, Grethel." "Good day, Hans. What good thing dost thou
bring?" "I bring nothing, I want something given me." Grethel presents
Hans with a piece of bacon. "Good-bye, Grethel." "Good-bye, Hans."

Hans takes the bacon, ties it to a rope, and drags it away behind
him. The dogs come and devour the bacon. When he gets home, he has
the rope in his hand, and there is no longer anything hanging to
it. "Good evening, mother." "Good evening, Hans." "Where hast thou
been?" "With Grethel." "What didst thou take her?" "I took her nothing,
she gave me something." "What did Grethel give thee?"  "Gave me a bit
of bacon." "Where is the bacon, Hans?" "I tied it to a rope, brought it
home, dogs took it." "That was ill done, Hans, thou shouldst have carried
the bacon on thy head." "Never mind, will do better next time." "Whither
away, Hans?" "To Grethel, mother." "Behave well, Hans." "I'll behave well.
Good-bye, mother." "Good-bye, Hans."

Hans comes to Grethel. "Good day, Grethel." "Good day, Hans." "What
good thing dost thou bring?" "I bring nothing, but would have something
given." Grethel presents Hans with a calf. "Good-bye, Grethel." "Good-bye,
Hans."

Hans takes the calf, puts it on his head, and the calf kicks his
face. "Good evening, mother." "Good evening, Hans. Where hast thou
been?" "With Grethel."  "What didst thou take her?" "I took nothing, but
had something given me." "What did Grethel give thee?" "A calf." "Where
hast thou the calf, Hans?" "I set it on my head and it kicked my
face." "That was ill done, Hans, thou shouldst have led the calf, and
put it in the stall." "Never mind, will do better next time."

"Whither away, Hans?" "To Grethel, mother." "Behave well, Hans." "I'll
behave well. Good-bye, mother." "Good-bye, Hans."

Hans comes to Grethel. "Good day, Grethel." "Good day, Hans. What good
thing dost thou bring?" "I bring nothing, but would have something
given." Grethel says to Hans, "I will go with thee."

Hans takes Grethel, ties her to a rope, leads her to the rack and binds
her fast.  Then Hans goes to his mother. "Good evening, mother." "Good
evening, Hans.  Where hast thou been?" "With Grethel." "What didst thou
take her?" "I took her nothing." "What did Grethel give thee?" "She
gave me nothing, she came with me." "Where hast thou left Grethel?" "I
led her by the rope, tied her to the rack, and scattered some grass for
her." "That was ill done, Hans, thou shouldst have cast friendly eyes
on her." "Never mind, will do better."

Hans went into the stable, cut out all the calves' and sheep's eyes,
and threw them in Grethel's face. Then Grethel became angry, tore herself
loose and ran away, and became the bride of Hans.



33 The Three Languages

An aged count once lived in Switzerland, who had an only son, but he was
stupid, and could learn nothing. Then said the father, "Hark thee, my son,
I can get nothing into thy head, let me try as I will. Thou must go from
hence, I will give thee into the care of a celebrated master, who shall
see what he can do with thee." The youth was sent into a strange town,
and remained a whole year with the master. At the end of this time,
he came home again, and his father asked, "Now, my son, what hast thou
learnt?" "Father, I have learnt what the dogs say when they bark." "Lord
have mercy on us!" cried the father; "is that all thou hast learnt? I
will send thee into another town, to another master." The youth was taken
thither, and stayed a year with this master likewise. When he came back
the father again asked, "My son, what hast thou learnt?" He answered,
"Father, I have learnt what the birds say." Then the father fell into a
rage and said, "Oh, thou lost man, thou hast spent the precious time and
learnt nothing; art thou not ashamed to appear before mine eyes? I will
send thee to a third master, but if thou learnest nothing this time also,
I will no longer be thy father." The youth remained a whole year with the
third master also, and when he came home again, and his father inquired,
"My son, what hast thou learnt?" he answered, "Dear father, I have this
year learnt what the frogs croak." Then the father fell into the most
furious anger, sprang up, called his people thither, and said, "This
man is no longer my son, I drive him forth, and command you to take him
out into the forest, and kill him." They took him forth, but when they
should have killed him, they could not do it for pity, and let him go,
and they cut the eyes and the tongue out of a deer that they might carry
them to the old man as a token.

The youth wandered on, and after some time came to a fortress where he
begged for a night's lodging. "Yes," said the lord of the castle, "if
thou wilt pass the night down there in the old tower, go thither; but I
warn thee, it is at the peril of thy life, for it is full of wild dogs,
which bark and howl without stopping, and at certain hours a man has to
be given to them, whom they at once devour." The whole district was in
sorrow and dismay because of them, and yet no one could do anything to
stop this. The youth, however, was without fear, and said, "Just let me
go down to the barking dogs, and give me something that I can throw to
them; they will do nothing to harm me." As he himself would have it so,
they gave him some food for the wild animals, and led him down to the
tower. When he went inside, the dogs did not bark at him, but wagged their
tails quite amicably around him, ate what he set before them, and did not
hurt one hair of his head.  Next morning, to the astonishment of everyone,
he came out again safe and unharmed, and said to the lord of the castle,
"The dogs have revealed to me, in their own language, why they dwell
there, and bring evil on the land. They are bewitched, and are obliged
to watch over a great treasure which is below in the tower, and they
can have no rest until it is taken away, and I have likewise learnt,
from their discourse, how that is to be done." Then all who heard this
rejoiced, and the lord of the castle said he would adopt him as a son
if he accomplished it successfully. He went down again, and as he knew
what he had to do, he did it thoroughly, and brought a chest full of gold
out with him. The howling of the wild dogs was henceforth heard no more;
they had disappeared, and the country was freed from the trouble.

After some time he took it into his head that he would travel to Rome. On
the way he passed by a marsh, in which a number of frogs were sitting
croaking. He listened to them, and when he became aware of what they
were saying, he grew very thoughtful and sad. At last he arrived in
Rome, where the Pope had just died, and there was great difficulty as
to whom they should appoint as his successor. They at length agreed that
the person should be chosen as pope who should be distinguished by some
divine and miraculous token. And just as that was decided on, the young
count entered into the church, and suddenly two snow-white doves flew on
his shoulders and remained sitting there. The ecclesiastics recognized
therein the token from above, and asked him on the spot if he would be
pope. He was undecided, and knew not if he were worthy of this, but the
doves counselled him to do it, and at length he said yes. Then was he
anointed and consecrated, and thus was fulfilled what he had heard from
the frogs on his way, which had so affected him, that he was to be his
Holiness the Pope. Then he had to sing a mass, and did not know one word
of it, but the two doves sat continually on his shoulders, and said it
all in his ear.



34 Clever Elsie

There was once a man who had a daughter who was called Clever Elsie. And
when she had grown up her father said, "We will get her married." "Yes,"
said the mother; "if only any one would come who would have her." At
length a man came from a distance and wooed her, who was called Hans;
but he stipulated that Clever Elsie should be really wise. "Oh," said
the father, "she's sharp enough;" and the mother said, "Oh, she can see
the wind coming up the street, and hear the flies coughing." "Well,"
said Hans, "if she is not really wise, I won't have her." When they were
sitting at dinner and had eaten, the mother said, "Elsie, go into the
cellar and fetch some beer." Then Clever Elsie took the pitcher from
the wall, went into the cellar, and tapped the lid briskly as she went,
so that the time might not appear long. When she was below she fetched
herself a chair, and set it before the barrel so that she had no need to
stoop, and did not hurt her back or do herself any unexpected injury. Then
she placed the can before her, and turned the tap, and while the beer was
running she would not let her eyes be idle, but looked up at the wall,
and after much peering here and there, saw a pick-axe exactly above her,
which the masons had accidentally left there.

Then Clever Elsie began to weep, and said, "If I get Hans, and we have
a child, and he grows big, and we send him into the cellar here to draw
beer, then the pick-axe will fall on his head and kill him." Then she
sat and wept and screamed with all the strength of her body, over the
misfortune which lay before her. Those upstairs waited for the drink,
but Clever Elsie still did not come. Then the woman said to the servant,
"Just go down into the cellar and see where Elsie is." The maid went
and found her sitting in front of the barrel, screaming loudly. "Elsie,
why weepest thou?" asked the maid. "Ah," she answered, "have I not
reason to weep? If I get Hans, and we have a child, and he grows big,
and has to draw beer here, the pick-axe will perhaps fall on his head,
and kill him." Then said the maid, "What a clever Elsie we have!" and
sat down beside her and began loudly to weep over the misfortune. After
a while, as the maid did not come back, those upstairs were thirsty for
the beer, the man said to the boy, "Just go down into the cellar and
see where Elsie and the girl are." The boy went down, and there sat
Clever Elsie and the girl both weeping together. Then he asked, "Why
are ye weeping?" "Ah," said Elsie, "have I not reason to weep? If I get
Hans, and we have a child, and he grows big, and has to draw beer here,
the pick-axe will fall on his head and kill him." Then said the boy,
"What a clever Elsie we have!"  and sat down by her, and likewise began
to howl loudly. Upstairs they waited for the boy, but as he still did
not return, the man said to the woman, "Just go down into the cellar
and see where Elsie is!" The woman went down, and found all three
in the midst of their lamentations, and inquired what was the cause;
then Elsie told her also that her future child was to be killed by the
pick-axe, when it grew big and had to draw beer, and the pick-axe fell
down. Then said the mother likewise, "What a clever Elsie we have!" and
sat down and wept with them. The man upstairs waited a short time, but
as his wife did not come back and his thirst grew ever greater, he said,
"I must go into the cellar myself and see where Elsie is." But when he
got into the cellar, and they were all sitting together crying, and he
heard the reason, and that Elsie's child was the cause, and that Elsie
might perhaps bring one into the world some day, and that it might be
killed by the pick-axe, if it should happen to be sitting beneath it,
drawing beer just at the very time when it fell down, he cried, "Oh,
what a clever Elsie!" and sat down, and likewise wept with them. The
bridegroom stayed upstairs alone for a long time; then as no one would
come back he thought, "They must be waiting for me below; I too must
go there and see what they are about." When he got down, five of them
were sitting screaming and lamenting quite piteously, each out-doing the
other. "What misfortune has happened then?" he asked. "Ah, dear Hans,"
said Elsie, "if we marry each other and have a child, and he is big,
and we perhaps send him here to draw something to drink, then the
pick-axe which has been left up there might dash his brains out if it
were to fall down, so have we not reason to weep?" "Come," said Hans,
"more understanding than that is not needed for my household, as thou
art such a clever Elsie, I will have thee," and he seized her hand,
took her upstairs with him, and married her.

After Hans had had her some time, he said, "Wife, I am going out to work
and earn some money for us; go into the field and cut the corn that we may
have some bread." "Yes, dear Hans, I will do that." After Hans had gone
away, she cooked herself some good broth and took it into the field with
her. When she came to the field she said to herself, "What shall I do;
shall I shear first, or shall I eat first? Oh, I will eat first." Then
she emptied her basin of broth, and when she was fully satisfied, she
once more said, "What shall I do? Shall I shear first, or shall I sleep
first? I will sleep first." Then she lay down among the corn and fell
asleep. Hans had been at home for a long time, but Elsie did not come;
then said he, "What a clever Elsie I have; she is so industrious that
she does not even come home to eat." As, however, she still stayed away,
and it was evening, Hans went out to see what she had cut, but nothing
was cut, and she was lying among the corn asleep. Then Hans hastened home
and brought a fowler's net with little bells and hung it round about her,
and she still went on sleeping. Then he ran home, shut the house-door,
and sat down in his chair and worked. At length, when it was quite dark,
Clever Elsie awoke and when she got up there was a jingling all round
about her, and the bells rang at each step which she took. Then she was
alarmed, and became uncertain whether she really was Clever Elsie or
not, and said, "Is it I, or is it not I?" But she knew not what answer
to make to this, and stood for a time in doubt; at length she thought,
"I will go home and ask if it be I, or if it be not I, they will be sure
to know." She ran to the door of her own house, but it was shut; then
she knocked at the window and cried, "Hans, is Elsie within?" "Yes,"
answered Hans, "she is within." Hereupon she was terrified, and said,
"Ah, heavens! Then it is not I," and went to another door; but when the
people heard the jingling of the bells they would not open it, and she
could get in nowhere. Then she ran out of the village, and no one has
seen her since.



35 The Tailor in Heaven

One very fine day it came to pass that the good God wished to enjoy
himself in the heavenly garden, and took all the apostles and saints
with him, so that no one stayed in heaven but Saint Peter. The Lord had
commanded him to let no one in during his absence, so Peter stood by
the door and kept watch. Before long some one knocked. Peter asked who
was there, and what he wanted? "I am a poor, honest tailor who prays
for admission," replied a smooth voice. "Honest indeed," said Peter,
"like the thief on the gallows! Thou hast been light-fingered and
hast snipped folks' clothes away. Thou wilt not get into heaven. The
Lord hath forbidden me to let any one in while he is out." "Come,
do be merciful," cried the tailor. "Little scraps which fall off the
table of their own accord are not stolen, and are not worth speaking
about. Look, I am lame, and have blisters on my feet with walking here,
I cannot possibly turn back again. Only let me in, and I will do all
the rough work. I will carry the children, and wash their clothes, and
wash and clean the benches on which they have been playing, and patch
all their torn clothes." Saint Peter let himself be moved by pity, and
opened the door of heaven just wide enough for the lame tailor to slip
his lean body in. He was forced to sit down in a corner behind the door,
and was to stay quietly and peaceably there, in order that the Lord,
when he returned, might not observe him and be angry. The tailor obeyed,
but once when Saint Peter went outside the door, he got up, and full of
curiosity, went round about into every corner of heaven, and inspected
the arrangement of every place. At length he came to a spot where many
beautiful and delightful chairs were standing, and in the midst was a
seat all of gold which was set with shining jewels, likewise it was much
higher than the other chairs, and a footstool of gold was before it. It
was, however, the seat on which the Lord sat when he was at home, and
from which he could see everything which happened on earth. The tailor
stood still, and looked at the seat for a long time, for it pleased him
better than all else. At last he could master his curiosity no longer,
and climbed up and seated himself in the chair. Then he saw everything
which was happening on earth, and observed an ugly old woman who was
standing washing by the side of a stream, secretly laying two veils on one
side for herself. The sight of this made the tailor so angry that he laid
hold of the golden footstool, and threw it down to earth through heaven,
at the old thief. As, however, he could not bring the stool back again,
he slipped quietly out of the chair, seated himself in his place behind
the door, and behaved as if he had never stirred from the spot.

When the Lord and master came back again with his heavenly companions,
he did not see the tailor behind the door, but when he seated himself
on his chair the footstool was missing. He asked Saint Peter what had
become of the stool, but he did not know. Then he asked if he had let
anyone come in. "I know of no one who has been here," answered Peter,
"but a lame tailor, who is still sitting behind the door." Then the
Lord had the tailor brought before him, and asked him if he had taken
away the stool, and where he had put it? "Oh, Lord," answered the tailor
joyously, "I threw it in my anger down to earth at an old woman whom I
saw stealing two veils at the washing." "Oh, thou knave," said the Lord,
"were I to judge as thou judgest, how dost thou think thou couldst have
escaped so long? I should long ago have had no chairs, benches, seats,
nay, not even an oven-fork, but should have thrown everything down at
the sinners. Henceforth thou canst stay no longer in heaven, but must
go outside the door again. Then go where thou wilt. No one shall give
punishment here, but I alone, the Lord."

Peter was obliged to take the tailor out of heaven again, and as he had
torn shoes, and feet covered with blisters, he took a stick in his hand,
and went to "Wait-a-bit," where the good soldiers sit and make merry.



36 The Wishing-Table, the Gold-Ass, and the Cudgel in the Sack

There was once upon a time a tailor who had three sons, and only one
goat. But as the goat supported the whole of them with her milk, she was
obliged to have good food, and to be taken every day to pasture. The
sons, therefore, did this, in turn. Once the eldest took her to the
churchyard, where the finest herbs were to be found, and let her eat
and run about there. At night when it was time to go home he asked,
"Goat, hast thou had enough?" The goat answered,


 "I have eaten so much,
 Not a leaf more I'll touch, meh! meh!"

"Come home, then," said the youth, and took hold of the cord round her
neck, led her into the stable and tied her up securely. "Well," said the
old tailor, "has the goat had as much food as she ought?" "Oh," answered
the son, "she has eaten so much, not a leaf more she'll touch." But the
father wished to satisfy himself, and went down to the stable, stroked
the dear animal and asked, "Goat, art thou satisfied?" The goat answered,


 "Wherewithal should I be satisfied?
 Among the graves I leapt about,
 And found no food, so went without, meh! meh!"

"What do I hear?" cried the tailor, and ran upstairs and said to the
youth, "Hollo, thou liar: thou saidest the goat had had enough, and hast
let her hunger!" and in his anger he took the yard-measure from the wall,
and drove him out with blows.

Next day it was the turn of the second son, who looked out for a place
in the fence of the garden, where nothing but good herbs grew, and the
goat cleared them all off. At night when he wanted to go home, he asked,
"Goat, art thou satisfied?" The goat answered,


 "I have eaten so much,
 Not a leaf more I'll touch, meh! meh!"

"Come home, then," said the youth, and led her home, and tied her up in
the stable. "Well," said the old tailor, "has the goat had as much food as
she ought?"  "Oh," answered the son, "she has eaten so much, not a leaf
more she'll touch."  The tailor would not rely on this, but went down
to the stable and said, "Goat, hast thou had enough?" The goat answered,


 "Wherewithal should I be satisfied?
 Among the graves I leapt about,
 And found no food, so went without, meh! meh!"

"The godless wretch!" cried the tailor, "to let such a good animal
hunger," and he ran up and drove the youth out of doors with the
yard-measure.

Now came the turn of the third son, who wanted to do the thing well,
and sought out some bushes with the finest leaves, and let the goat
devour them. In the evening when he wanted to go home, he asked, "Goat,
hast thou had enough?"  The goat answered,


 "I have eaten so much,
 Not a leaf more I'll touch, meh! meh!"

"Come home, then," said the youth, and led her into the stable, and tied
her up.  "Well," said the old tailor, "has the goat had a proper amount
of food?" "She has eaten so much, not a leaf more she'll touch." The
tailor did not trust to that, but went down and asked, "Goat, hast thou
had enough?" The wicked beast answered,


 "Wherewithal should I be satisfied?
 Among the graves I leapt about,
 And found no leaves, so went without, meh! meh!"

"Oh, the brood of liars!" cried the tailor, "each as wicked and forgetful
of his duty as the other! Ye shall no longer make a fool of me," and
quite beside himself with anger, he ran upstairs and belabored the poor
young fellow so vigorously with the yard-measure that he sprang out of
the house.

The old tailor was now alone with his goat. Next morning he went down into
the stable, caressed the goat and said, "Come, my dear little animal,
I will take thee to feed myself." He took her by the rope and conducted
her to green hedges, and amongst milfoil, and whatever else goats
like to eat. "There thou mayest for once eat to thy heart's content,"
said he to her, and let her browse till evening.  Then he asked, "Goat,
art thou satisfied?" She replied,


 "I have eaten so much,
 Not a leaf more I'll touch, meh! meh!"

"Come home, then," said the tailor, and led her into the stable, and
tied her fast.  When he was going away, he turned round again and said,
"Well, art thou satisfied for once?" But the goat did not behave the
better to him, and cried,


 "Wherewithal should I be satisfied?
 Among the graves I leapt about,
 And found no leaves, so went without, meh! meh!"

When the tailor heard that, he was shocked, and saw clearly that he
had driven away his three sons without cause. "Wait, thou ungrateful
creature," cried he, "it is not enough to drive thee forth, I will
mark thee so that thou wilt no more dare to show thyself amongst honest
tailors." In great haste he ran upstairs, fetched his razor, lathered the
goat's head, and shaved her as clean as the palm of his hand.  And as the
yard-measure would have been too good for her, he brought the horsewhip,
and gave her such cuts with it that she ran away in violent haste.

When the tailor was thus left quite alone in his house he fell into
great grief, and would gladly have had his sons back again, but no one
knew whither they were gone. The eldest had apprenticed himself to a
joiner, and learnt industriously and indefatigably, and when the time
came for him to go travelling, his master presented him with a little
table which had no particular appearance, and was made of common wood,
but it had one good property; if anyone set it out, and said, "Little
table, spread thyself," the good little table was at once covered with a
clean little cloth, and a plate was there, and a knife and fork beside
it, and dishes with boiled meats and roasted meats, as many as there
was room for, and a great glass of red wine shone so that it made the
heart glad. The young journeyman thought, "With this thou hast enough
for thy whole life," and went joyously about the world and never troubled
himself at all whether an inn was good or bad, or if anything was to be
found in it or not. When it suited him he did not enter an inn at all,
but either on the plain, in a wood, a meadow, or wherever he fancied,
he took his little table off his back, set it down before him, and said,
"Cover thyself," and then everything appeared that his heart desired. At
length he took it into his head to go back to his father, whose anger
would now be appeased, and who would now willingly receive him with
his wishing-table. It came to pass that on his way home, he came one
evening to an inn which was filled with guests. They bade him welcome,
and invited him to sit and eat with them, for otherwise he would have
difficulty in getting anything. "No," answered the joiner, "I will not
take the few bites out of your mouths; rather than that, you shall be
my guests." They laughed, and thought he was jesting with them; he,
however, placed his wooden table in the middle of the room, and said,
"Little table, cover thyself." Instantly it was covered with food,
so good that the host could never have procured it, and the smell of
it ascended pleasantly to the nostrils of the guests. "Fall to, dear
friends," said the joiner; and the guests when they saw that he meant it,
did not need to be asked twice, but drew near, pulled out their knives
and attacked it valiantly. And what surprised them the most was that
when a dish became empty, a full one instantly took its place of its
own accord. The innkeeper stood in one corner and watched the affair;
he did not at all know what to say, but thought, "Thou couldst easily
find a use for such a cook as that in thy kitchen." The joiner and his
comrades made merry until late into the night; at length they lay down
to sleep, and the young apprentice also went to bed, and set his magic
table against the wall. The host's thoughts, however, let him have
no rest; it occurred to him that there was a little old table in his
lumber-room which looked just like the apprentice's and he brought it
out quite softly, and exchanged it for the wishing-table. Next morning,
the joiner paid for his bed, took up his table, never thinking that he
had got a false one, and went his way. At mid-day he reached his father,
who received him with great joy. "Well, my dear son, what hast thou
learnt?" said he to him. "Father, I have become a joiner."

"A good trade," replied the old man; "but what hast thou brought back
with thee from thy apprenticeship?" "Father, the best thing which I have
brought back with me is this little table." The tailor inspected it on
all sides and said, "Thou didst not make a masterpiece when thou mad'st
that; it is a bad old table." "But it is a table which furnishes itself,"
replied the son. "When I set it out, and tell it to cover itself, the
most beautiful dishes stand on it, and a wine also, which gladdens the
heart. Just invite all our relations and friends, they shall refresh
and enjoy themselves for once, for the table will give them all they
require." When the company was assembled, he put his table in the middle
of the room and said, "Little table, cover thyself," but the little table
did not bestir itself, and remained just as bare as any other table which
did not understand language. Then the poor apprentice became aware that
his table had been changed, and was ashamed at having to stand there like
a liar. The relations, however, mocked him, and were forced to go home
without having eaten or drunk. The father brought out his patches again,
and went on tailoring, but the son went to a master in the craft.

The second son had gone to a miller and had apprenticed himself to
him. When his years were over, the master said, "As thou hast conducted
thyself so well, I give thee an ass of a peculiar kind, which neither
draws a cart nor carries a sack." "To what use is he put, then?" asked
the young apprentice. "He lets gold drop from his mouth," answered the
miller. "If thou settest him on a cloth and sayest 'Bricklebrit,' the
good animal will drop gold pieces for thee." "That is a fine thing,"
said the apprentice, and thanked the master, and went out into the
world. When he had need of gold, he had only to say "Bricklebrit" to his
ass, and it rained gold pieces, and he had nothing to do but pick them
off the ground.  Wheresoever he went, the best of everything was good
enough for him, and the dearer the better, for he had always a full
purse. When he had looked about the world for some time, he thought,
"Thou must seek out thy father; if thou goest to him with the gold-ass
he will forget his anger, and receive thee well." It came to pass that
he came to the same public-house in which his brother's table had been
exchanged. He led his ass by the bridle, and the host was about to take
the animal from him and tie him up, but the young apprentice said,
"Don't trouble yourself, I will take my grey horse into the stable,
and tie him up myself too, for I must know where he stands." This struck
the host as odd, and he thought that a man who was forced to look after
his ass himself, could not have much to spend; but when the stranger
put his hand in his pocket and brought out two gold pieces, and said he
was to provide something good for him, the host opened his eyes wide,
and ran and sought out the best he could muster. After dinner the guest
asked what he owed. The host did not see why he should not double the
reckoning, and said the apprentice must give two more gold pieces. He
felt in his pocket, but his gold was just at an end. "Wait an instant,
sir host," said he, "I will go and fetch some money;" but he took the
table-cloth with him. The host could not imagine what this could mean, and
being curious, stole after him, and as the guest bolted the stable-door,
he peeped through a hole left by a knot in the wood. The stranger spread
out the cloth under the animal and cried, "Bricklebrit," and immediately
the beast began to let gold pieces fall, so that it fairly rained down
money on the ground. "Eh, my word," said the host, "ducats are quickly
coined there! A purse like that is not amiss." The guest paid his score,
and went to bed, but in the night the host stole down into the stable, led
away the master of the mint, and tied up another ass in his place. Early
next morning the apprentice travelled away with his ass, and thought that
he had his gold-ass. At mid-day he reached his father, who rejoiced to
see him again, and gladly took him in. "What hast thou made of thyself,
my son?" asked the old man. "A miller," dear father, he answered. "What
hast thou brought back with thee from thy travels?" "Nothing else but
an ass." "There are asses enough here," said the father, "I would rather
have had a good goat." "Yes," replied the son, "but it is no common ass,
but a gold-ass, when I say 'Bricklebrit,' the good beast opens its mouth
and drops a whole sheetful of gold pieces. Just summon all our relations
hither, and I will make them rich folks." "That suits me well," said the
tailor, "for then I shall have no need to torment myself any longer with
the needle," and ran out himself and called the relations together. As
soon as they were assembled, the miller bade them make way, spread out
his cloth, and brought the ass into the room. "Now watch," said he,
and cried, "Bricklebrit," but no gold pieces fell, and it was clear that
the animal knew nothing of the art, for every ass does not attain such
perfection. Then the poor miller pulled a long face, saw that he was
betrayed, and begged pardon of the relatives, who went home as poor as
they came. There was no help for it, the old man had to betake him to
his needle once more, and the youth hired himself to a miller.

The third brother had apprenticed himself to a turner, and as that is
skilled labour, he was the longest in learning. His brothers, however,
told him in a letter how badly things had gone with them, and how the
innkeeper had cheated them of their beautiful wishing-gifts on the last
evening before they reached home.  When the turner had served his time,
and had to set out on his travels, as he had conducted himself so well,
his master presented him with a sack and said, "There is a cudgel in
it." "I can put on the sack," said he, "and it may be of good service
to me, but why should the cudgel be in it? It only makes it heavy." "I
will tell thee why," replied the master; "if any one has done anything
to injure thee, do but say, 'Out of the sack, Cudgel!' and the cudgel
will leap forth among the people, and play such a dance on their backs
that they will not be able to stir or move for a week, and it will not
leave off until thou sayest, 'Into the sack, Cudgel!'" The apprentice
thanked him, and put the sack on his back, and when any one came too near
him, and wished to attack him, he said, "Out of the sack, Cudgel!" and
instantly the cudgel sprang out, and dusted the coat or jacket of one
after the other on their backs, and never stopped until it had stripped
it off them, and it was done so quickly, that before anyone was aware,
it was already his own turn.  In the evening the young turner reached
the inn where his brothers had been cheated. He laid his sack on the
table before him, and began to talk of all the wonderful things which
he had seen in the world. "Yes," said he, "people may easily find a
table which will cover itself, a gold-ass, and things of that kind
-- extremely good things which I by no means despise---but these are
nothing in comparison with the treasure which I have won for myself,
and am carrying about with me in my sack there." The inn-keeper pricked
up his ears, "What in the world can that be?" thought he; "the sack must
be filled with nothing but jewels; I ought to get them cheap too, for
all good things go in threes." When it was time for sleep, the guest
stretched himself on the bench, and laid his sack beneath him for a
pillow. When the inn-keeper thought his guest was lying in a sound sleep,
he went to him and pushed and pulled quite gently and carefully at the
sack to see if he could possibly draw it away and lay another in its
place. The turner had, however, been waiting for this for a long time,
and now just as the inn-keeper was about to give a hearty tug, he cried,
"Out of the sack, Cudgel!"  Instantly the little cudgel came forth,
and fell on the inn-keeper and gave him a sound thrashing.

The host cried for mercy; but the louder he cried, so much more heavily
the cudgel beat the time on his back, until at length he fell to the
ground exhausted.  Then the turner said, "If thou dost not give back
the table which covers itself, and the gold-ass, the dance shall begin
afresh." "Oh, no," cried the host, quite humbly, "I will gladly produce
everything, only make the accursed kobold creep back into the sack." Then
said the apprentice, "I will let mercy take the place of justice, but
beware of getting into mischief again!" So he cried, "Into the sack,
Cudgel!" and let him have rest.

Next morning the turner went home to his father with the wishing-table,
and the gold-ass. The tailor rejoiced when he saw him once more, and asked
him likewise what he had learned in foreign parts. "Dear father," said he,
"I have become a turner." "A skilled trade," said the father. "What hast
thou brought back with thee from thy travels?"

"A precious thing, dear father," replied the son, "a cudgel in the sack."

"What!" cried the father, "a cudgel! That's worth thy trouble,
indeed! From every tree thou can cut thyself one." "But not one like this,
dear father. If I say, 'Out of the sack, Cudgel!' the cudgel springs out
and leads any one who means ill with me a weary dance, and never stops
until he lies on the ground and prays for fair weather. Look you, with
this cudgel have I got back the wishing-table and the gold-ass which the
thievish inn-keeper took away from my brothers. Now let them both be sent
for, and invite all our kinsmen. I will give them to eat and to drink,
and will fill their pockets with gold into the bargain." The old tailor
would not quite believe, but nevertheless got the relatives together. Then
the turner spread a cloth in the room and led in the gold-ass, and said
to his brother, "Now, dear brother, speak to him." The miller said,
"Bricklebrit," and instantly the gold pieces fell down on the cloth like
a thunder-shower, and the ass did not stop until every one of them had
so much that he could carry no more. (I can see in thy face that thou
also wouldst like to be there.)

Then the turner brought the little table, and said, "Now dear brother,
speak to it."  And scarcely had the carpenter said, "Table, cover
thyself," than it was spread and amply covered with the most exquisite
dishes. Then such a meal took place as the good tailor had never yet
known in his house, and the whole party of kinsmen stayed together till
far in the night, and were all merry and glad. The tailor locked away
needle and thread, yard-measure and goose, in a press, and lived with
his three sons in joy and splendour. (What, however, has become of the
goat who was to blame for the tailor driving out his three sons? That
I will tell thee. She was ashamed that she had a bald head, and ran to
a fox's hole and crept into it. When the fox came home, he was met by
two great eyes shining out of the darkness, and was terrified and ran
away. A bear met him, and as the fox looked quite disturbed, he said,
"What is the matter with thee, brother Fox, why dost thou look like
that?" "Ah," answered Redskin, "a fierce beast is in my cave and stared
at me with its fiery eyes." "We will soon drive him out," said the bear,
and went with him to the cave and looked in, but when he saw the fiery
eyes, fear seized on him likewise; he would have nothing to do with
the furious beast, and took to his heels. The bee met him, and as she
saw that he was ill at ease, she said, "Bear, thou art really pulling a
very pitiful face; what has become of all thy gaiety?" "It is all very
well for thee to talk," replied the bear, "a furious beast with staring
eyes is in Redskin's house, and we can't drive him out." The bee said,
"Bear I pity thee, I am a poor weak creature whom thou wouldst not turn
aside to look at, but still, I believe, I can help thee." She flew into
the fox's cave, lighted on the goat's smoothly-shorn head, and stung her
so violently, that she sprang up, crying "Meh, meh," and ran forth into
the world as if mad, and to this hour no one knows where she has gone.)



37 Thumbling

There was once a poor peasant who sat in the evening by the hearth and
poked the fire, and his wife sat and span. Then said he, "How sad it is
that we have no children! With us all is so quiet, and in other houses
it is noisy and lively."

"Yes," replied the wife, and sighed, "even if we had only one, and it were
quite small, and only as big as a thumb, I should be quite satisfied,
and we would still love it with all our hearts." Now it so happened
that the woman fell ill, and after seven months gave birth to a child,
that was perfect in all its limbs, but no longer than a thumb. Then said
they, "It is as we wished it to be, and it shall be our dear child;"
and because of its size, they called it Thumbling. They did not let it
want for food, but the child did not grow taller, but remained as it
had been at the first, nevertheless it looked sensibly out of its eyes,
and soon showed itself to be a wise and nimble creature, for everything
it did turned out well.

One day the peasant was getting ready to go into the forest to cut wood,
when he said as if to himself, "How I wish that there was any one who
would bring the cart to me!" "Oh father," cried Thumbling, "I will soon
bring the cart, rely on that; it shall be in the forest at the appointed
time." The man smiled and said, "How can that be done, thou art far
too small to lead the horse by the reins?" "That's of no consequence,
father, if my mother will only harness it, I shall sit in the horse's
ear and call out to him how he is to go." "Well," answered the man,
"for once we will try it."

When the time came, the mother harnessed the horse, and placed Thumbling
in its ear, and then the little creature cried, "Gee up, gee up!"

Then it went quite properly as if with its master, and the cart went the
right way into the forest. It so happened that just as he was turning
a corner, and the little one was crying, "Gee up," two strange men came
towards him. "My word!" said one of them, "What is this? There is a cart
coming, and a driver is calling to the horse and still he is not to be
seen!" "That can't be right," said the other, "we will follow the cart
and see where it stops." The cart, however, drove right into the forest,
and exactly to the place where the wood had been cut. When Thumbling saw
his father, he cried to him, "Seest thou, father, here I am with the cart;
now take me down." The father got hold of the horse with his left hand
and with the right took his little son out of the ear. Thumbling sat
down quite merrily on a straw, but when the two strange men saw him,
they did not know what to say for astonishment. Then one of them took
the other aside and said, "Hark, the little fellow would make our fortune
if we exhibited him in a large town, for money.  We will buy him." They
went to the peasant and said, "Sell us the little man. He shall be well
treated with us." "No," replied the father, "he is the apple of my eye,
and all the money in the world cannot buy him from me." Thumbling,
however, when he heard of the bargain, had crept up the folds of his
father's coat, placed himself on his shoulder, and whispered in his ear,
"Father do give me away, I will soon come back again." Then the father
parted with him to the two men for a handsome bit of money. "Where wilt
thou sit?" they said to him. "Oh just set me on the rim of your hat, and
then I can walk backwards and forwards and look at the country, and still
not fall down." They did as he wished, and when Thumbling had taken leave
of his father, they went away with him. They walked until it was dusk,
and then the little fellow said, "Do take me down, I want to come down."
The man took his hat off, and put the little fellow on the ground by
the wayside, and he leapt and crept about a little between the sods,
and then he suddenly slipped into a mouse-hole which he had sought
out. "Good evening, gentlemen, just go home without me," he cried to
them, and mocked them. They ran thither and stuck their sticks into the
mouse-hole, but it was all lost labour. Thumbling crept still farther in,
and as it soon became quite dark, they were forced to go home with their
vexation and their empty purses.

When Thumbling saw that they were gone, he crept back out of the
subterranean passage. "It is so dangerous to walk on the ground in the
dark," said he; "how easily a neck or a leg is broken!" Fortunately he
knocked against an empty snail-shell. "Thank God!" said he. "In that I
can pass the night in safety," and got into it. Not long afterwards,
when he was just going to sleep, he heard two men go by, and one
of them was saying, "How shall we contrive to get hold of the rich
pastor's silver and gold?" "I could tell thee that," cried Thumbling,
interrupting them. "What was that?" said one of the thieves in fright,
"I heard some one speaking." They stood still listening, and Thumbling
spoke again, and said, "Take me with you, and I'll help you."

"But where art thou?" "Just look on the ground, and observe from whence
my voice comes," he replied. There the thieves at length found him, and
lifted him up.  "Thou little imp, how wilt thou help us?" they said. "A
great deal," said he, "I will creep into the pastor's room through the
iron bars, and will reach out to you whatever you want to have." "Come
then," they said, "and we will see what thou canst do." When they got to
the pastor's house, Thumbling crept into the room, but instantly cried
out with all his might, "Do you want to have everything that is here?" The
thieves were alarmed, and said, "But do speak softly, so as not to waken
any one!" Thumbling however, behaved as if he had not understood this,
and cried again, "What do you want? Do you want to have everything that
is here?" The cook, who slept in the next room, heard this and sat up
in bed, and listened. The thieves, however, had in their fright run
some distance away, but at last they took courage, and thought, "The
little rascal wants to mock us." They came back and whispered to him,
"Come, be serious, and reach something out to us." Then Thumbling again
cried as loudly as he could, "I really will give you everything, just put
your hands in." The maid who was listening, heard this quite distinctly,
and jumped out of bed and rushed to the door. The thieves took flight,
and ran as if the Wild Huntsman were behind them, but as the maid could
not see anything, she went to strike a light. When she came to the
place with it, Thumbling, unperceived, betook himself to the granary,
and the maid, after she had examined every corner and found nothing,
lay down in her bed again, and believed that, after all, she had only
been dreaming with open eyes and ears.

Thumbling had climbed up among the hay and found a beautiful place to
sleep in; there he intended to rest until day, and then go home again
to his parents. But he had other things to go through. Truly, there is
much affliction and misery in this world! When day dawned, the maid arose
from her bed to feed the cows. Her first walk was into the barn, where
she laid hold of an armful of hay, and precisely that very one in which
poor Thumbling was lying asleep. He, however, was sleeping so soundly
that he was aware of nothing, and did not awake until he was in the mouth
of the cow, who had picked him up with the hay. "Ah, heavens!" cried he,
"how have I got into the fulling mill?" but he soon discovered where he
was. Then it was necessary to be careful not to let himself go between the
teeth and be dismembered, but he was nevertheless forced to slip down into
the stomach with the hay. "In this little room the windows are forgotten,"
said he, "and no sun shines in, neither will a candle be brought." His
quarters were especially unpleasing to him, and the worst was, more
and more hay was always coming in by the door, and the space grew less
and less. Then at length in his anguish, he cried as loud as he could,
"Bring me no more fodder, bring me no more fodder." The maid was just
milking the cow, and when she heard some one speaking, and saw no one,
and perceived that it was the same voice that she had heard in the
night, she was so terrified that she slipped off her stool, and spilt
the milk. She ran in great haste to her master, and said, "Oh heavens,
pastor, the cow has been speaking!" "Thou art mad," replied the pastor;
but he went himself to the byre to see what was there. Hardly, however
had he set his foot inside when Thumbling again cried, "Bring me no more
fodder, bring me no more fodder." Then the pastor himself was alarmed,
and thought that an evil spirit had gone into the cow, and ordered her
to be killed. She was killed, but the stomach, in which Thumbling was,
was thrown on the midden. Thumbling had great difficulty in working
his way; however, he succeeded so far as to get some room, but just
as he was going to thrust his head out, a new misfortune occurred. A
hungry wolf ran thither, and swallowed the whole stomach at one gulp.
Thumbling did not lose courage. "Perhaps," thought he, "the wolf will
listen to what I have got to say," and he called to him from out of his
stomach, "Dear wolf, I know of a magnificent feast for you."

"Where is it to be had?" said the wolf.

"In such and such a house; thou must creep into it through the
kitchen-sink, and wilt find cakes, and bacon, and sausages, and as much
of them as thou canst eat," and he described to him exactly his father's
house. The wolf did not require to be told this twice, squeezed himself
in at night through the sink, and ate to his heart's content in the
larder. When he had eaten his fill, he wanted to go out again, but he had
become so big that he could not go out by the same way.  Thumbling had
reckoned on this, and now began to make a violent noise in the wolf's
body, and raged and screamed as loudly as he could. "Wilt thou be quiet,"
said the wolf, "thou wilt waken up the people!" "Eh, what," replied the
little fellow, "thou hast eaten thy fill, and I will make merry likewise,"
and began once more to scream with all his strength. At last his father
and mother were aroused by it, and ran to the room and looked in through
the opening in the door. When they saw that a wolf was inside, they ran
away, and the husband fetched his axe, and the wife the scythe. "Stay
behind," said the man, when they entered the room. "When I have given
him a blow, if he is not killed by it, thou must cut him down and hew
his body to pieces." Then Thumbling heard his parents, voices and cried,
"Dear father, I am here; I am in the wolf's body." Said the father,
full of joy, "Thank God, our dear child has found us again," and bade
the woman take away her scythe, that Thumbling might not be hurt with
it. After that he raised his arm, and struck the wolf such a blow on
his head that he fell down dead, and then they got knives and scissors
and cut his body open and drew the little fellow forth. "Ah," said the
father, "what sorrow we have gone through for thy sake." "Yes father,
I have gone about the world a great deal. Thank heaven, I breathe fresh
air again!" "Where hast thou been, then?" "Ah, father, I have been in a
mouse's hole, in a cow's stomach, and then in a wolf's; now I will stay
with you." "And we will not sell thee again, no, not for all the riches
in the world," said his parents, and they embraced and kissed their dear
Thumbling. They gave him to eat and to drink, and had some new clothes
made for him, for his own had been spoiled on his journey.



38 The Wedding of Mrs. Fox

FIRST STORY

There was once on a time an old fox with nine tails, who believed that
his wife was not faithful to him, and wished to try her. He stretched
himself out under the bench, did not move a limb, and behaved as if he
were stone dead. Mrs. Fox went up to her room, shut herself in, and her
maid, Miss Cat, sat by the fire, and did the cooking. When it became known
that the old fox was dead, wooers presented themselves. The maid heard
some one standing at the house-door, knocking. She went and opened it,
and it was a young fox, who said,


 "What may you be about, Miss Cat?
 Do you sleep or do you wake?"

She answered,


 "I am not sleeping, I am waking,
 Wouldst thou know what I am making?
 I am boiling warm beer with butter so nice,
 Will the gentleman enter and drink some likewise?"

"No, thank you, miss," said the fox, "what is Mrs. Fox doing?" The
maid replied,


 "She sits all alone,
 And makes her moan,
 Weeping her little eyes quite red,
 Because old Mr. Fox is dead."

"Do just tell her, miss, that a young fox is here, who would like to
woo her."  "Certainly, young sir."


 The cat goes up the stairs trip, trap,
 The door she knocks at tap, tap, tap,
 "Mistress Fox, are you inside?"
 "Oh yes, my little cat," she cried.
 "A wooer he stands at the door out there."

 "Tell me what he is like, my dear?"

"But has he nine as beautiful tails as the late Mr. Fox?" "Oh, no,"
answered the cat, "he has only one."

"Then I will not have him." Miss Cat went downstairs and sent the
wooer away.  Soon afterwards there was another knock, and another
fox was at the door who wished to woo Mrs. Fox. He had two tails,
but he did not fare better than the first. After this still more came,
each with one tail more than the other, but they were all turned away,
until at last one came who had nine tails, like old Mr. Fox.  When the
widow heard that, she said joyfully to the cat,


 "Now open the gates and doors all wide,
 And carry old Mr. Fox outside."

But just as the wedding was going to be solemnized, old Mr. Fox stirred
under the bench, and cudgelled all the rabble, and drove them and Mrs. Fox
out of the house.

SECOND STORY

When old Mr. Fox was dead, the wolf came as a wooer, and knocked at the
door, and the cat who was servant to Mrs. Fox, opened it for him. The
wolf greeted her, and said,


 "Good day, Mrs. Cat of Kehrewit,
 "How comes it that alone you sit?
 What are you making good?"

The cat replied,


 "In milk I'm breaking bread so sweet,
 Will the gentleman please come in and eat?"

"No, thank you, Mrs. Cat," answered the wolf. "Is Mrs. Fox not at home?"

The cat said,


 "She sits upstairs in her room,
 Bewailing her sorrowful doom,

 Bewailing her trouble so sore,
 For old Mr. Fox is no more."

The wolf answered,


 "If she's in want of a husband now,
 Then will it please her to step below?"
 The cat runs quickly up the stair,
 And lets her tail fly here and there,
 Until she comes to the parlour door.

 With her five gold rings at the door she knocks,
 "Are you within, good Mistress Fox?
 If you're in want of a husband now,

 Then will it please you to step below?

Mrs. Fox asked, "Has the gentleman red stockings on' and has he a pointed
mouth?" "No," answered the cat. "Then he won't do for me."

When the wolf was gone, came a dog, a stag, a hare, a bear, a lion,
and all the beasts of the forest, one after the other. But one of the
good points which old Mr. Fox had possessed, was always lacking, and
the cat had continually to send the wooers away. At length came a young
fox. Then Mrs. Fox said, "Has the gentleman red stockings on, and has
he a little pointed mouth?" "Yes," said the cat, "he has." "Then let
him come upstairs," said Mrs. Fox, and ordered the servant to prepare
the wedding-feast.


 "Sweep me the room as clean as you can,
 Up with the window, fling out my old man!
 For many a fine fat mouse he brought,
 Yet of his wife he never thought,
 But ate up every one he caught."

Then the wedding was solemnized with young Mr. Fox, and there was much
rejoicing and dancing; and if they have not left off, they are dancing
still.



39 The Elves

FIRST STORY

A shoemaker, by no fault of his own, had become so poor that at last he
had nothing left but leather for one pair of shoes. So in the evening,
he cut out the shoes which he wished to begin to make the next morning,
and as he had a good conscience, he lay down quietly in his bed, commended
himself to God, and fell asleep. In the morning, after he had said his
prayers, and was just going to sit down to work, the two shoes stood
quite finished on his table. He was astounded, and knew not what to say
to it. He took the shoes in his hands to observe them closer, and they
were so neatly made that there was not one bad stitch in them, just as if
they were intended as a masterpiece. Soon after, a buyer came in, and as
the shoes pleased him so well, he paid more for them than was customary,
and, with the money, the shoemaker was able to purchase leather for two
pairs of shoes. He cut them out at night, and next morning was about to
set to work with fresh courage; but he had no need to do so, for, when
he got up, they were already made, and buyers also were not wanting,
who gave him money enough to buy leather for four pairs of shoes. The
following morning, too, he found the four pairs made; and so it went on
constantly, what he cut out in the evening was finished by the morning,
so that he soon had his honest independence again, and at last became a
wealthy man. Now it befell that one evening not long before Christmas,
when the man had been cutting out, he said to his wife, before going
to bed, "What think you if we were to stay up to-night to see who it is
that lends us this helping hand?" The woman liked the idea, and lighted a
candle, and then they hid themselves in a corner of the room, behind some
clothes which were hanging up there, and watched. When it was midnight,
two pretty little naked men came, sat down by the shoemaker's table, took
all the work which was cut out before them and began to stitch, and sew,
and hammer so skilfully and so quickly with their little fingers that
the shoemaker could not turn away his eyes for astonishment. They did
not stop until all was done, and stood finished on the table, and they
ran quickly away.

Next morning the woman said, "The little men have made us rich, and we
really must show that we are grateful for it. They run about so, and have
nothing on, and must be cold. I'll tell thee what I'll do: I will make
them little shirts, and coats, and vests, and trousers, and knit both of
them a pair of stockings, and do thou, too, make them two little pairs
of shoes." The man said, "I shall be very glad to do it;" and one night,
when everything was ready, they laid their presents all together on the
table instead of the cut-out work, and then concealed themselves to see
how the little men would behave. At midnight they came bounding in, and
wanted to get to work at once, but as they did not find any leather cut
out, but only the pretty little articles of clothing, they were at first
astonished, and then they showed intense delight. They dressed themselves
with the greatest rapidity, putting the pretty clothes on, and singing,


 "Now we are boys so fine to see,
 Why should we longer cobblers be?"

Then they danced and skipped and leapt over chairs and benches. At
last they danced out of doors. From that time forth they came no more,
but as long as the shoemaker lived all went well with him, and all his
undertakings prospered.

SECOND STORY

There was once a poor servant-girl, who was industrious and cleanly,
and swept the house every day, and emptied her sweepings on the great
heap in front of the door. One morning when she was just going back to
her work, she found a letter on this heap, and as she could not read,
she put her broom in the corner, and took the letter to her master and
mistress, and behold it was an invitation from the elves, who asked
the girl to hold a child for them at its christening. The girl did
not know what to do, but at length, after much persuasion, and as they
told her that it was not right to refuse an invitation of this kind,
she consented. Then three elves came and conducted her to a hollow
mountain, where the little folks lived. Everything there was small,
but more elegant and beautiful than can be described. The baby's mother
lay in a bed of black ebony ornamented with pearls, the coverlids were
embroidered with gold, the cradle was of ivory, the bath of gold. The
girl stood as godmother, and then wanted to go home again, but the little
elves urgently entreated her to stay three days with them. So she stayed,
and passed the time in pleasure and gaiety, and the little folks did all
they could to make her happy. At last she set out on her way home. Then
first they filled her pockets quite full of money, and after that they
led her out of the mountain again. When she got home, she wanted to begin
her work, and took the broom, which was still standing in the corner, in
her hand and began to sweep. Then some strangers came out of the house,
who asked her who she was, and what business she had there? And she had
not, as she thought, been three days with the little men in the mountains,
but seven years, and in the meantime her former masters had died.

THIRD STORY

A certain mother's child had been taken away out of its cradle by the
elves, and a changeling with a large head and staring eyes, which would
do nothing but eat and drink, laid in its place. In her trouble she
went to her neighbour, and asked her advice. The neighbour said that
she was to carry the changeling into the kitchen, set it down on the
hearth, light a fire, and boil some water in two egg-shells, which would
make the changeling laugh, and if he laughed, all would be over with
him. The woman did everything that her neighbour bade her. When she put
the egg-shells with water on the fire, the imp said, "I am as old now
as the Wester forest, but never yet have I seen any one boil anything
in an egg-shell!" And he began to laugh at it. Whilst he was laughing,
suddenly came a host of little elves, who brought the right child,
set it down on the hearth, and took the changeling away with them.



40 The Robber Bridegroom

There was once on a time a miller, who had a beautiful daughter, and
as she was grown up, he wished that she was provided for, and well
married. He thought, "If any good suitor comes and asks for her, I will
give her to him." Not long afterwards, a suitor came, who appeared
to be very rich, and as the miller had no fault to find with him, he
promised his daughter to him. The maiden, however, did not like him
quite so much as a girl should like the man to whom she is engaged,
and had no confidence in him. Whenever she saw, or thought of him,
she felt a secret horror. Once he said to her, "Thou art my betrothed,
and yet thou hast never once paid me a visit." The maiden replied,
"I know not where thy house is." Then said the bridegroom, "My house is
out there in the dark forest."  She tried to excuse herself and said
she could not find the way there. The bridegroom said, "Next Sunday
thou must come out there to me; I have already invited the guests, and
I will strew ashes in order that thou mayst find thy way through the
forest." When Sunday came, and the maiden had to set out on her way,
she became very uneasy, she herself knew not exactly why, and to mark
her way she filled both her pockets full of peas and lentils. Ashes were
strewn at the entrance of the forest, and these she followed, but at
every step she threw a couple of peas on the ground. She walked almost
the whole day until she reached the middle of the forest, where it was
the darkest, and there stood a solitary house, which she did not like,
for it looked so dark and dismal. She went inside it, but no one was
within, and the most absolute stillness reigned. Suddenly a voice cried,


 "Turn back, turn back, young maiden dear,
 'Tis a murderer's house you enter here."

The maiden looked up, and saw that the voice came from a bird, which
was hanging in a cage on the wall. Again it cried,


 "Turn back, turn back, young maiden dear,
 'Tis a murderer's house you enter here."

Then the young maiden went on farther from one room to another, and
walked through the whole house, but it was entirely empty and not one
human being was to be found. At last she came to the the cellar, and
there sat an extremely aged woman, whose head shook constantly. "Can
you not tell me," said the maiden, "if my betrothed lives here?"

"Alas, poor child," replied the old woman, "whither hast thou come? Thou
art in a murderer's den. Thou thinkest thou art a bride soon to be
married, but thou wilt keep thy wedding with death. Look, I have been
forced to put a great kettle on there, with water in it, and when they
have thee in their power, they will cut thee to pieces without mercy,
will cook thee, and eat thee, for they are eaters of human flesh. If I
do not have compassion on thee, and save thee, thou art lost."

Thereupon the old woman led her behind a great hogshead where she could
not be seen. "Be as still as a mouse," said she, "do not make a sound,
or move, or all will be over with thee. At night, when the robbers are
asleep, we will escape; I have long waited for an opportunity." Hardly
was this done, than the godless crew came home. They dragged with them
another young girl. They were drunk, and paid no heed to her screams and
lamentations. They gave her wine to drink, three glasses full, one glass
of white wine, one glass of red, and a glass of yellow, and with this
her heart burst in twain. Thereupon they tore off her delicate raiment,
laid her on a table, cut her beautiful body in pieces and strewed salt
thereon. The poor bride behind the cask trembled and shook, for she saw
right well what fate the robbers had destined for her. One of them noticed
a gold ring on the little finger of the murdered girl, and as it would not
come off at once, he took an axe and cut the finger off, but it sprang
up in the air, away over the cask and fell straight into the bride's
bosom. The robber took a candle and wanted to look for it, but could not
find it. Then another of them said, "Hast thou looked behind the great
hogshead?" But the old woman cried, "Come and get something to eat, and
leave off looking till the morning, the finger won't run away from you."

Then the robbers said, "The old woman is right," and gave up their search,
and sat down to eat, and the old woman poured a sleeping-draught in their
wine, so that they soon lay down in the cellar, and slept and snored. When
the bride heard that, she came out from behind the hogshead, and had to
step over the sleepers, for they lay in rows on the ground, and great was
her terror lest she should waken one of them. But God helped her, and
she got safely over. The old woman went up with her, opened the doors,
and they hurried out of the murderers' den with all the speed in their
power. The wind had blown away the strewn ashes, but the peas and lentils
had sprouted and grown up, and showed them the way in the moonlight. They
walked the whole night, until in the morning they arrived at the mill,
and then the maiden told her father everything exactly as it had happened.

When the day came when the wedding was to be celebrated, the bridegroom
appeared, and the Miller had invited all his relations and friends. As
they sat at table, each was bidden to relate something. The bride
sat still, and said nothing.  Then said the bridegroom to the bride,
"Come, my darling, dost thou know nothing? Relate something to us like
the rest." She replied, "Then I will relate a dream. I was walking alone
through a wood, and at last I came to a house, in which no living soul
was, but on the wall there was a bird in a cage which cried,


 "Turn back, turn back, young maiden dear,
 'Tis a murderer's house you enter here."

And this it cried once more. 'My darling, I only dreamt this. Then
I went through all the rooms, and they were all empty, and there was
something so horrible about them! At last I went down into the cellar,
and there sat a very very old woman, whose head shook; I asked her,
'Does my bridegroom live in this house? She answered, 'Alas poor child,
thou hast got into a murderer's den, thy bridegroom does live here,
but he will hew thee in pieces, and kill thee, and then he will cook
thee, and eat thee.' My darling, I only dreamt this. But the old woman
hid me behind a great hogshead, and, scarcely was I hidden, when the
robbers came home, dragging a maiden with them, to whom they gave three
kinds of wine to drink, white, red, and yellow, with which her heart
broke in twain. My darling, I only dreamt this. Thereupon they pulled
off her pretty clothes, and hewed her fair body in pieces on a table,
and sprinkled them with salt. My darling, I only dreamt this. And one
of the robbers saw that there was still a ring on her little finger,
and as it was hard to draw off, he took an axe and cut it off, but the
finger sprang up in the air, and sprang behind the great hogshead, and
fell in my bosom. And there is the finger with the ring!" And with these
words she drew it forth, and showed it to those present.

The robber, who had during this story become as pale as ashes, leapt up
and wanted to escape, but the guests held him fast, and delivered him
over to justice.  Then he and his whole troop were executed for their
infamous deeds.



41 Herr Korbes

There were once a cock and a hen who wanted to take a journey together. So
the cock built a beautiful carriage, which had four red wheels, and
harnessed four mice to it. The hen seated herself in it with the cock,
and they drove away together. Not long afterwards they met a cat who said,
"Where are you going?"  The cock replied, "We are going to the house
of Herr Korbes." "Take me with you," said the cat. The cock answered,
"Most willingly, get up behind, lest you fall off in front. Take great
care not to dirty my little red wheels. And you little wheels, roll on,
and you little mice pipe out, as we go forth on our way to the house of
Herr Korbes."

After this came a millstone, then an egg, then a duck, then a pin,
and at last a needle, who all seated themselves in the carriage, and
drove with them. When, however, they reached the house of Herr Korbes,
Herr Korbes was not there.  The mice drew the carriage into the barn,
the hen flew with the cock upon a perch. The cat sat down by the hearth,
the duck on the well-pole. The egg rolled itself into a towel, the pin
stuck itself into the chair-cushion, the needle jumped on to the bed in
the middle of the pillow, and the millstone laid itself over the door.
Then Herr Korbes came home, went to the hearth, and was about to light
the fire, when the cat threw a quantity of ashes in his face. He ran
into the kitchen in a great hurry to wash it off, and the duck splashed
some water in his face. He wanted to dry it with the towel, but the egg
rolled up against him, broke, and glued up his eyes. He wanted to rest,
and sat down in the chair, and then the pin pricked him. He fell in a
passion, and threw himself on his bed, but as soon as he laid his head on
the pillow, the needle pricked him, so that he screamed aloud, and was
just going to run out into the wide world in his rage, but when he came
to the house-door, the millstone leapt down and struck him dead. Herr
Korbes must have been a very wicked man!



42 The Godfather

A poor man had so many children that he had already asked every one in
the world to be godfather, and when still another child was born, no
one else was left whom he could invite. He knew not what to do, and,
in his perplexity, he lay down and fell asleep. Then he dreamt that
he was to go outside the gate, and ask the first person who met him
to be godfather. When he awoke, he determined to obey his dream, and
went outside the gate, and asked the first person who came up to him to
be godfather. The stranger presented him with a little glass of water,
and said, "This is a wonderful water, with it thou canst heal the sick,
only thou must see where Death is standing. If he is standing by the
patient's head, give the patient some of the water and he will be healed,
but if Death is standing by his feet, all trouble will be in vain, for
the sick man must die." From this time forth, the man could always say
whether a patient could be saved or not, and became famous for his skill,
and earned a great deal of money. Once he was called in to the child
of the King, and when he entered, he saw death standing by the child's
head and cured it with the water, and he did the same a second time,
but the third time Death was standing by its feet, and then he knew the
child was forced to die.

Once the man thought he would visit the godfather, and tell him how he
had succeeded with the water. But when he entered the house, it was such
a strange establishment! On the first flight of stairs, the broom and
shovel were disputing, and knocking each other about violently. He asked
them, "Where does the godfather live?" The broom replied, "One flight of
stairs higher up." When he came to the second flight, he saw a heap of
dead fingers lying. He asked, "Where does the godfather live?" One of the
fingers replied, "One flight of stairs higher." On the third flight lay
a heap of dead heads, which again directed him to the flight beyond. On
the fourth flight, he saw fishes on the fire, which frizzled in the pans
and baked themselves. They, too, said, "One flight of stairs higher."
And when he had ascended the fifth, he came to the door of a room and
peeped through the keyhole, and there he saw the godfather who had a
pair of long horns. When he opened the door and went in, the godfather
got into bed in a great hurry and covered himself up. Then said the man,
"Sir godfather, what a strange household you have! When I came to your
first flight of stairs, the shovel and broom were quarreling, and beating
each other violently."

"How stupid you are!" said the godfather. "That was the boy and the maid
talking to each other." "But on the second flight I saw dead fingers
lying." "Oh, how silly you are! Those were some roots of scorzonera." "On
the third flight lay a heap of dead men's heads." "Foolish man, those
were cabbages." "On the fourth flight, I saw fishes in a pan, which were
hissing and baking themselves."  When he had said that, the fishes came
and served themselves up. "And when I got to the fifth flight, I peeped
through the keyhole of a door, and there, godfather, I saw you, and
you had long, long horns." "Oh, that is a lie!" The man became alarmed,
and ran out, and if he had not, who knows what the godfather would have
done to him.



43 Frau Trude

There was once a little girl who was obstinate and inquisitive, and when
her parents told her to do anything, she did not obey them, so how could
she fare well? One day she said to her parents, "I have heard so much
of Frau Trude, I will go to her some day. People say that everything
about her does look so strange, and that there are such odd things in
her house, that I have become quite curious!" Her parents absolutely
forbade her, and said, "Frau Trude is a bad woman, who does wicked
things, and if thou goest to her; thou art no longer our child." But the
maiden did not let herself be turned aside by her parent's prohibition,
and still went to Frau Trude. And when she got to her, Frau Trude said,
"Why art thou so pale?" "Ah," she replied, and her whole body trembled,
"I have been so terrified at what I have seen." "What hast thou seen?" "I
saw a black man on your steps." "That was a collier." "Then I saw a green
man." "That was a huntsman." "After that I saw a blood-red man." "That
was a butcher." "Ah, Frau Trude, I was terrified; I looked through the
window and saw not you, but, as I verily believe, the devil himself
with a head of fire." "Oho!" said she, "then thou hast seen the witch
in her proper costume. I have been waiting for thee, and wanting thee a
long time already; thou shalt give me some light." Then she changed the
girl into a block of wood, and threw it into the fire. And when it was in
full blaze she sat down close to it, and warmed herself by it, and said,
"That shines bright for once in a way."



44 Godfather Death

A poor man had twelve children and was forced to work night and day to
give them even bread. When therefore the thirteenth came into the world,
he knew not what to do in his trouble, but ran out into the great highway,
and resolved to ask the first person whom he met to be godfather. The
first to meet him was the good God who already knew what filled his heart,
and said to him, "Poor man, I pity thee. I will hold thy child at its
christening, and will take charge of it and make it happy on earth." The
man said, "Who art thou?" "I am God." "Then I do not desire to have thee
for a godfather," said the man; "thou givest to the rich, and leavest the
poor to hunger." Thus spoke the man, for he did not know how wisely God
apportions riches and poverty. He turned therefore away from the Lord,
and went farther. Then the Devil came to him and said, "What seekest
thou? If thou wilt take me as a godfather for thy child, I will give him
gold in plenty and all the joys of the world as well." The man asked,
"Who art thou?" "I am the Devil." "Then I do not desire to have thee for
godfather," said the man; "thou deceivest men and leadest them astray." He
went onwards, and then came Death striding up to him with withered legs,
and said, "Take me as godfather."  The man asked, "Who art thou?" "I am
Death, and I make all equal." Then said the man, "Thou art the right one,
thou takest the rich as well as the poor, without distinction; thou shalt
be godfather." Death answered, "I will make thy child rich and famous,
for he who has me for a friend can lack nothing." The man said, "Next
Sunday is the christening; be there at the right time." Death appeared
as he had promised, and stood godfather quite in the usual way.

When the boy had grown up, his godfather one day appeared and bade him
go with him. He led him forth into a forest, and showed him a herb which
grew there, and said, "Now shalt thou receive thy godfather's present. I
make thee a celebrated physician. When thou art called to a patient,
I will always appear to thee. If I stand by the head of the sick man,
thou mayst say with confidence that thou wilt make him well again, and
if thou givest him of this herb he will recover; but if I stand by the
patient's feet, he is mine, and thou must say that all remedies are in
vain, and that no physician in the world could save him. But beware of
using the herb against my will, or it might fare ill with thee."

It was not long before the youth was the most famous physician in
the whole world. "He had only to look at the patient and he knew his
condition at once, and if he would recover, or must needs die." So
they said of him, and from far and wide people came to him, sent for
him when they had any one ill, and gave him so much money that he soon
became a rich man. Now it so befell that the King became ill, and the
physician was summoned, and was to say if recovery were possible. But
when he came to the bed, Death was standing by the feet of the sick man,
and the herb did not grow which could save him. "If I could but cheat
Death for once," thought the physician, "he is sure to take it ill if I
do, but, as I am his godson, he will shut one eye; I will risk it." He
therefore took up the sick man, and laid him the other way, so that now
Death was standing by his head. Then he gave the King some of the herb,
and he recovered and grew healthy again. But Death came to the physician,
looking very black and angry, threatened him with his finger, and said,
"Thou hast overreached me; this time I will pardon it, as thou art my
godson; but if thou venturest it again, it will cost thee thy neck,
for I will take thee thyself away with me."

Soon afterwards the King's daughter fell into a severe illness. She
was his only child, and he wept day and night, so that he began to
lose the sight of his eyes, and he caused it to be made known that
whosoever rescued her from death should be her husband and inherit the
crown. When the physician came to the sick girl's bed, he saw Death by
her feet. He ought to have remembered the warning given by his godfather,
but he was so infatuated by the great beauty of the King's daughter,
and the happiness of becoming her husband, that he flung all thought to
the winds. He did not see that Death was casting angry glances on him,
that he was raising his hand in the air, and threatening him with his
withered fist. He raised up the sick girl, and placed her head where
her feet had lain. Then he gave her some of the herb, and instantly her
cheeks flushed red, and life stirred afresh in her.

When Death saw that for a second time he was defrauded of his own
property, he walked up to the physician with long strides, and said,
"All is over with thee, and now the lot falls on thee," and seized him
so firmly with his ice-cold hand, that he could not resist, and led him
into a cave below the earth. There he saw how thousands and thousands of
candles were burning in countless rows, some large, others half-sized,
others small. Every instant some were extinguished, and others again burnt
up, so that the flames seemed to leap hither and thither in perpetual
change. "See," said Death, "these are the lights of men's lives. The large
ones belong to children, the half-sized ones to married people in their
prime, the little ones belong to old people; but children and young folks
likewise have often only a tiny candle." "Show me the light of my life,"
said the physician, and he thought that it would be still very tall. Death
pointed to a little end which was just threatening to go out, and said,
"Behold, it is there." "Ah, dear godfather," said the horrified physician,
"light a new one for me, do it for love of me, that I may enjoy my life,
be King, and the husband of the King's beautiful daughter." "I cannot,"
answered Death, "one must go out before a new one is lighted." "Then place
the old one on a new one, that will go on burning at once when the old one
has come to an end," pleaded the physician. Death behaved as if he were
going to fulfill his wish, and took hold of a tall new candle; but as he
desired to revenge himself, he purposely made a mistake in fixing it, and
the little piece fell down and was extinguished. Immediately the physician
fell on the ground, and now he himself was in the hands of Death.



45 Thumbling as Journeyman

A certain tailor had a son, who happened to be small, and no bigger than
a Thumb, and on this account he was always called Thumbling. He had,
however, some courage in him, and said to his father, "Father, I must and
will go out into the world." "That's right, my son," said the old man,
and took a long darning-needle and made a knob of sealing-wax on it at the
candle, "and there is a sword for thee to take with thee on the way." Then
the little tailor wanted to have one more meal with them, and hopped into
the kitchen to see what his lady mother had cooked for the last time. It
was, however, just dished up, and the dish stood on the hearth. Then he
said, "Mother, what is there to eat to-day?"  "See for thyself," said his
mother. So Thumbling jumped on to the hearth, and peeped into the dish,
but as he stretched his neck in too far the steam from the food caught
hold of him, and carried him up the chimney. He rode about in the air on
the steam for a while, until at length he sank down to the ground again.
Now the little tailor was outside in the wide world, and he travelled
about, and went to a master in his craft, but the food was not good enough
for him.  "Mistress, if you give us no better food," said Thumbling,
"I will go away, and early to-morrow morning I will write with chalk on
the door of your house, 'Too many potatoes, too little meat! Farewell,
Mr. Potato-King.'" "What wouldst thou have forsooth, grasshopper?" said
the mistress, and grew angry, and seized a dishcloth, and was just going
to strike him; but my little tailor crept nimbly under a thimble, peeped
out from beneath it, and put his tongue out at the mistress. She took up
the thimble, and wanted to get hold of him, but little Thumbling hopped
into the cloth, and while the mistress was opening it out and looking
for him, he got into a crevice in the table. "Ho, ho, lady mistress,"
cried he, and thrust his head out, and when she began to strike him he
leapt down into the drawer. At last, however, she caught him and drove
him out of the house.

The little tailor journeyed on and came to a great forest, and there
he fell in with a band of robbers who had a design to steal the King's
treasure. When they saw the little tailor, they thought, "A little
fellow like that can creep through a key-hole and serve as picklock to
us." "Hollo," cried one of them, "thou giant Goliath, wilt thou go to the
treasure-chamber with us? Thou canst slip thyself in and throw out the
money." Thumbling reflected a while, and at length he said, "yes," and
went with them to the treasure-chamber. Then he looked at the doors above
and below, to see if there was any crack in them. It was not long before
he espied one which was broad enough to let him in. He was therefore about
to get in at once, but one of the two sentries who stood before the door,
observed him, and said to the other, "What an ugly spider is creeping
there; I will kill it." "Let the poor creature alone," said the other;
"it has done thee no harm." Then Thumbling got safely through the crevice
into the treasure-chamber, opened the window beneath which the robbers
were standing, and threw out to them one thaler after another. When the
little tailor was in the full swing of his work, he heard the King coming
to inspect his treasure-chamber, and crept hastily into a hiding-place.
The King noticed that several solid thalers were missing, but could not
conceive who could have stolen them, for locks and bolts were in good
condition, and all seemed well guarded. Then he went away again, and said
to the sentries, "Be on the watch, some one is after the money." When
therefore Thumbling recommenced his labours, they heard the money moving,
and a sound of klink, klink, klink. They ran swiftly in to seize the
thief, but the little tailor, who heard them coming, was still swifter,
and leapt into a corner and covered himself with a thaler, so that nothing
could be seen of him, and at the same time he mocked the sentries and
cried, "Here am I!" The sentries ran thither, but as they got there, he
had already hopped into another corner under a thaler, and was crying,
"Ho, ho, here am I!" The watchmen sprang there in haste, but Thumbling
had long ago got into a third corner, and was crying, "Ho, ho, here am
I!" And thus he made fools of them, and drove them so long round about
the treasure-chamber that they were weary and went away. Then by degrees
he threw all the thalers out, dispatching the last with all his might,
then hopped nimbly upon it, and flew down with it through the window. The
robbers paid him great compliments. "Thou art a valiant hero," said they;
"wilt thou be our captain?"

Thumbling, however, declined, and said he wanted to see the world
first. They now divided the booty, but the little tailor only asked for
a kreuzer because he could not carry more.

Then he once more buckled on his sword, bade the robbers goodbye, and
took to the road. First, he went to work with some masters, but he had
no liking for that, and at last he hired himself as man-servant in an
inn. The maids, however, could not endure him, for he saw all they did
secretly, without their seeing him, and he told their master and mistress
what they had taken off the plates, and carried away out of the cellar,
for themselves. Then said they, "Wait, and we will pay thee off!" and
arranged with each other to play him a trick. Soon afterwards when one of
the maids was mowing in the garden, and saw Thumbling jumping about and
creeping up and down the plants, she mowed him up quickly with the grass,
tied all in a great cloth, and secretly threw it to the cows. Now amongst
them there was a great black one, who swallowed him down without hurting
him.  Down below, however, it pleased him ill, for it was quite dark,
neither was any candle burning. When the cow was being milked he cried,


 "Strip, strap, strull,
 Will the pail soon be full?"

But the noise of the milking prevented his being understood. After this
the master of the house came into the cow-byre and said, "That cow shall
be killed to-morrow." Then Thumbling was so alarmed that he cried out
in a clear voice, "Let me out first, for I am shut up inside her." The
master heard that quite well, but did not know from whence the voice
came. "Where art thou?" asked he. "In the black one," answered Thumbling,
but the master did not understand what that meant, and went out.

Next morning the cow was killed. Happily Thumbling did not meet with one
blow at the cutting up and chopping; he got among the sausage-meat. And
when the butcher came in and began his work, he cried out with all his
might, "Don't chop too deep, don't chop too deep, I am amongst it." No
one heard this because of the noise of the chopping-knife. Now poor
Thumbling was in trouble, but trouble sharpens the wits, and he sprang
out so adroitly between the blows that none of them touched him, and he
escaped with a whole skin. But still he could not get away, there was
nothing for it but to let himself be thrust into a black-pudding with
the bits of bacon. His quarters there were rather confined, and besides
that he was hung up in the chimney to be smoked, and there time did hang
terribly heavy on his hands.

At length in winter he was taken down again, as the black-pudding had
to be set before a guest. When the hostess was cutting it in slices, he
took care not to stretch out his head too far lest a bit of it should be
cut off; at last he saw his opportunity, cleared a passage for himself,
and jumped out.

The little tailor, however, would not stay any longer in a house where he
fared so ill, so at once set out on his journey again. But his liberty
did not last long. In the open country he met with a fox who snapped
him up in a fit of absence. "Hollo, Mr. Fox," cried the little tailor,
"it is I who am sticking in your throat, set me at liberty again." "Thou
art right," answered the fox. "Thou art next to nothing for me, but if
thou wilt promise me the fowls in thy father's yard I will let thee go."
"With all my heart," replied Thumbling. "Thou shalt have all the
cocks and hens, that I promise thee." Then the fox let him go again,
and himself carried him home.  When the father once more saw his dear
son, he willingly gave the fox all the fowls which he had. "For this I
likewise bring thee a handsome bit of money," said Thumbling, and gave
his father the kreuzer which he earned on his travels.

"But why did the fox get the poor chickens to eat?" "Oh, you goose, your
father would surely love his child far more than the fowls in the yard!"



46 Fitcher's Bird

There was once a wizard who used to take the form of a poor man, and went
to houses and begged, and caught pretty girls. No one knew whither he
carried them, for they were never seen more. One day he appeared before
the door of a man who had three pretty daughters; he looked like a poor
weak beggar, and carried a basket on his back, as if he meant to collect
charitable gifts in it. He begged for a little food, and when the eldest
daughter came out and was just reaching him a piece of bread, he did
but touch her, and she was forced to jump into his basket. Thereupon he
hurried away with long strides, and carried her away into a dark forest
to his house, which stood in the midst of it. Everything in the house
was magnificent; he gave her whatsoever she could possibly desire, and
said, "My darling, thou wilt certainly be happy with me, for thou hast
everything thy heart can wish for." This lasted a few days, and then
he said, "I must journey forth, and leave thee alone for a short time;
there are the keys of the house; thou mayst go everywhere and look at
everything except into one room, which this little key here opens, and
there I forbid thee to go on pain of death." He likewise gave her an egg
and said, "Preserve the egg carefully for me, and carry it continually
about with thee, for a great misfortune would arise from the loss of it."

She took the keys and the egg, and promised to obey him in
everything. When he was gone, she went all round the house from the bottom
to the top, and examined everything. The rooms shone with silver and gold,
and she thought she had never seen such great splendour. At length she
came to the forbidden door; she wished to pass it by, but curiosity let
her have no rest. She examined the key, it looked just like any other;
she put it in the keyhole and turned it a little, and the door sprang
open. But what did she see when she went in? A great bloody basin stood
in the middle of the room, and therein lay human beings, dead and hewn
to pieces, and hard by was a block of wood, and a gleaming axe lay
upon it. She was so terribly alarmed that the egg which she held in
her hand fell into the basin. She got it out and washed the blood off,
but in vain, it appeared again in a moment. She washed and scrubbed,
but she could not get it out.

It was not long before the man came back from his journey, and the first
things which he asked for were the key and the egg. She gave them to him,
but she trembled as she did so, and he saw at once by the red spots that
she had been in the bloody chamber. "Since thou hast gone into the room
against my will," said he, "thou shalt go back into it against thine
own. Thy life is ended." He threw her down, dragged her thither by her
hair, cut her head off on the block, and hewed her in pieces so that her
blood ran on the ground. Then he threw her into the basin with the rest.

"Now I will fetch myself the second," said the wizard, and again he went
to the house in the shape of a poor man, and begged. Then the second
daughter brought him a piece of bread; he caught her like the first,
by simply touching her, and carried her away. She did not fare better
than her sister. She allowed herself to be led away by her curiosity,
opened the door of the bloody chamber, looked in, and had to atone for
it with her life on the wizard's return. Then he went and brought the
third sister, but she was clever and crafty. When he had given her the
keys and the egg, and had left her, she first put the egg away with
great care, and then she examined the house, and at last went into the
forbidden room. Alas, what did she behold! Both her sisters lay there
in the basin, cruelly murdered, and cut in pieces. But she began to
gather their limbs together and put them in order, head, body, arms and
legs. And when nothing further was wanting the limbs began to move and
unite themselves together, and both the maidens opened their eyes and were
once more alive. Then they rejoiced and kissed and caressed each other.

On his arrival, the man at once demanded the keys and the egg, and as he
could perceive no trace of any blood on it, he said, "Thou hast stood the
test, thou shalt be my bride." He now had no longer any power over her,
and was forced to do whatsoever she desired. "Oh, very well," said she,
"thou shalt first take a basketful of gold to my father and mother,
and carry it thyself on thy back; in the meantime I will prepare for the
wedding." Then she ran to her sisters, whom she had hidden in a little
chamber, and said, "The moment has come when I can save you. The wretch
shall himself carry you home again, but as soon as you are at home send
help to me." She put both of them in a basket and covered them quite
over with gold, so that nothing of them was to be seen, then she called
in the wizard and said to him, "Now carry the basket away, but I shall
look through my little window and watch to see if thou stoppest on the
way to stand or to rest."

The wizard raised the basket on his back and went away with it, but
it weighed him down so heavily that the perspiration streamed from his
face. Then he sat down and wanted to rest awhile, but immediately one of
the girls in the basket cried, "I am looking through my little window,
and I see that thou art resting. Wilt thou go on at once?" He thought
it was his bride who was calling that to him; and got up on his legs
again. Once more he was going to sit down, but instantly she cried, "I am
looking through my little window, and I see that thou art resting. Wilt
thou go on directly?" And whenever he stood still, she cried this, and
then he was forced to go onwards, until at last, groaning and out of
breath, he took the basket with the gold and the two maidens into their
parents' house. At home, however, the bride prepared the marriage-feast,
and sent invitations to the friends of the wizard. Then she took a skull
with grinning teeth, put some ornaments on it and a wreath of flowers,
carried it upstairs to the garret-window, and let it look out from
thence. When all was ready, she got into a barrel of honey, and then cut
the feather-bed open and rolled herself in it, until she looked like a
wondrous bird, and no one could recognize her. Then she went out of the
house, and on her way she met some of the wedding-guests, who asked,


 "O, Fitcher's bird, how com'st thou here?"
 "I come from Fitcher's house quite near."
 "And what may the young bride be doing?"
 "From cellar to garret she's swept all clean,
 And now from the window she's peeping, I ween."

At last she met the bridegroom, who was coming slowly back. He, like
the others, asked,


 "O, Fitcher's bird, how com'st thou here?"
 "I come from Fitcher's house quite near."
 "And what may the young bride be doing?

 "From cellar to garret she's swept all clean,
 And now from the window she's peeping, I ween."

The bridegroom looked up, saw the decked-out skull, thought it was his
bride, and nodded to her, greeting her kindly. But when he and his guests
had all gone into the house, the brothers and kinsmen of the bride,
who had been sent to rescue her, arrived. They locked all the doors of
the house, that no one might escape, set fire to it, and the wizard and
all his crew had to burn.



47 The Juniper-Tree

It is now long ago, quite two thousand years, since there was a rich man
who had a beautiful and pious wife, and they loved each other dearly. They
had, however, no children, though they wished for them very much, and the
woman prayed for them day and night, but still they had none. Now there
was a court-yard in front of their house in which was a juniper-tree,
and one day in winter the woman was standing beneath it, paring herself
an apple, and while she was paring herself the apple she cut her finger,
and the blood fell on the snow.  "Ah," said the woman, and sighed right
heavily, and looked at the blood before her, and was most unhappy, "ah,
if I had but a child as red as blood and as white as snow!" And while
she thus spake, she became quite happy in her mind, and felt just as if
that were going to happen. Then she went into the house and a month went
by and the snow was gone, and two months, and then everything was green,
and three months, and then all the flowers came out of the earth, and
four months, and then all the trees in the wood grew thicker, and the
green branches were all closely entwined, and the birds sang until the
wood resounded and the blossoms fell from the trees, then the fifth month
passed away and she stood under the juniper-tree, which smelt so sweetly
that her heart leapt, and she fell on her knees and was beside herself
with joy, and when the sixth month was over the fruit was large and fine,
and then she was quite still, and the seventh month she snatched at the
juniper-berries and ate them greedily, then she grew sick and sorrowful,
then the eighth month passed, and she called her husband to her, and
wept and said, "If I die then bury me beneath the juniper-tree." Then
she was quite comforted and happy until the next month was over, and
then she had a child as white as snow and as red as blood, and when she
beheld it she was so delighted that she died.

Then her husband buried her beneath the juniper-tree, and he began to
weep sore; after some time he was more at ease, and though he still wept
he could bear it, and after some time longer he took another wife.

By the second wife he had a daughter, but the first wife's child was
a little son, and he was as red as blood and as white as snow. When
the woman looked at her daughter she loved her very much, but then she
looked at the little boy and it seemed to cut her to the heart, for
the thought came into her mind that he would always stand in her way,
and she was for ever thinking how she could get all the fortune for her
daughter, and the Evil One filled her mind with this till she was quite
wroth with the little boy, and slapped him here and cuffed him there,
until the unhappy child was in continual terror, for when he came out
of school he had no peace in any place.

One day the woman had gone upstairs to her room, and her little daughter
went up too, and said, "Mother, give me an apple." "Yes, my child,"
said the woman, and gave her a fine apple out of the chest, but the
chest had a great heavy lid with a great sharp iron lock. "Mother,"
said the little daughter, "is brother not to have one too?" This made
the woman angry, but she said, "Yes, when he comes out of school." And
when she saw from the window that he was coming, it was just as if the
Devil entered into her, and she snatched at the apple and took it away
again from her daughter, and said, "Thou shalt not have one before thy
brother." Then she threw the apple into the chest, and shut it. Then
the little boy came in at the door, and the Devil made her say to him
kindly, "My son, wilt thou have an apple?" and she looked wickedly at
him. "Mother," said the little boy, "how dreadful you look! Yes, give
me an apple." Then it seemed to her as if she were forced to say to him,
"Come with me," and she opened the lid of the chest and said, "Take out
an apple for thyself," and while the little boy was stooping inside, the
Devil prompted her, and crash! she shut the lid down, and his head flew
off and fell among the red apples. Then she was overwhelmed with terror,
and thought, "If I could but make them think that it was not done by
me!" So she went upstairs to her room to her chest of drawers, and took
a white handkerchief out of the top drawer, and set the head on the neck
again, and folded the handkerchief so that nothing could be seen, and she
set him on a chair in front of the door, and put the apple in his hand.

After this Marlinchen came into the kitchen to her mother, who was
standing by the fire with a pan of hot water before her which she
was constantly stirring round. "Mother," said Marlinchen, "brother is
sitting at the door, and he looks quite white and has an apple in his
hand. I asked him to give me the apple, but he did not answer me, and
I was quite frightened." "Go back to him," said her mother, "and if he
will not answer thee, give him a box on the ear." So Marlinchen went
to him and said, "Brother, give me the apple." But he was silent, and
she gave him a box on the ear, on which his head fell down. Marlinchen
was terrified, and began crying and screaming, and ran to her mother,
and said, "Alas, mother, I have knocked my brother's head off!" and she
wept and wept and could not be comforted. "Marlinchen," said the mother,
"what hast thou done?  but be quiet and let no one know it; it cannot be
helped now, we will make him into black-puddings." Then the mother took
the little boy and chopped him in pieces, put him into the pan and made
him into black puddings; but Marlinchen stood by weeping and weeping,
and all her tears fell into the pan and there was no need of any salt.

Then the father came home, and sat down to dinner and said, "But where
is my son?" And the mother served up a great dish of black-puddings,
and Marlinchen wept and could not leave off. Then the father again said,
"But where is my son?"  "Ah," said the mother, "he has gone across the
country to his mother's great uncle; he will stay there awhile." "And
what is he going to do there? He did not even say good-bye to me."

"Oh, he wanted to go, and asked me if he might stay six weeks, he is well
taken care of there." "Ah," said the man, "I feel so unhappy lest all
should not be right.  He ought to have said good-bye to me." With that he
began to eat and said, "Marlinchen, why art thou crying? Thy brother will
certainly come back." Then he said, "Ah, wife, how delicious this food
is, give me some more." And the more he ate the more he wanted to have,
and he said, "Give me some more, you shall have none of it. It seems to
me as if it were all mine." And he ate and ate and threw all the bones
under the table, until he had finished the whole. But Marlinchen went
away to her chest of drawers, and took her best silk handkerchief out
of the bottom drawer, and got all the bones from beneath the table, and
tied them up in her silk handkerchief, and carried them outside the door,
weeping tears of blood. Then the juniper-tree began to stir itself, and
the branches parted asunder, and moved together again, just as if some
one was rejoicing and clapping his hands. At the same time a mist seemed
to arise from the tree, and in the centre of this mist it burned like a
fire, and a beautiful bird flew out of the fire singing magnificently,
and he flew high up in the air, and when he was gone, the juniper-tree
was just as it had been before, and the handkerchief with the bones was
no longer there. Marlinchen, however, was as gay and happy as if her
brother were still alive. And she went merrily into the house, and sat
down to dinner and ate.

But the bird flew away and lighted on a goldsmith's house, and began
to sing,


 "My mother she killed me,
 My father he ate me,
 My sister, little Marlinchen,
 Gathered together all my bones,
 Tied them in a silken handkerchief,
 Laid them beneath the juniper-tree,

 Kywitt, kywitt, what a beautiful bird am I!"

The goldsmith was sitting in his workshop making a gold chain, when he
heard the bird which was sitting singing on his roof, and very beautiful
the song seemed to him. He stood up, but as he crossed the threshold
he lost one of his slippers.  But he went away right up the middle
of the street with one shoe on and one sock; he had his apron on,
and in one hand he had the gold chain and in the other the pincers,
and the sun was shining brightly on the street. Then he went right
on and stood still, and said to the bird, "Bird," said he then, "how
beautifully thou canst sing! Sing me that piece again." "No," said the
bird, "I'll not sing it twice for nothing! Give me the golden chain,
and then I will sing it again for thee." "There," said the goldsmith,
"there is the golden chain for thee, now sing me that song again." Then
the bird came and took the golden chain in his right claw, and went and
sat in front of the goldsmith, and sang,


 "My mother she killed me,
 My father he ate me,
 My sister, little Marlinchen,
 Gathered together all my bones,
 Tied them in a silken handkerchief,
 Laid them beneath the juniper-tree,

 Kywitt, kywitt, what a beautiful bird am I!"

Then the bird flew away to a shoemaker, and lighted on his roof and sang,


 "My mother she killed me,
 My father he ate me,
 My sister, little Marlinchen,
 Gathered together all my bones,
 Tied them in a silken handkerchief,
 Laid them beneath the juniper-tree,

 Kywitt, kywitt, what a beautiful bird am I!"

The shoemaker heard that and ran out of doors in his shirt sleeves, and
looked up at his roof, and was forced to hold his hand before his eyes
lest the sun should blind him. "Bird," said he, "how beautifully thou
canst sing!" Then he called in at his door, "Wife, just come outside,
there is a bird, look at that bird, he just can sing well." Then he
called his daughter and children, and apprentices, boys and girls, and
they all came up the street and looked at the bird and saw how beautiful
he was, and what fine red and green feathers he had, and how like real
gold his neck was, and how the eyes in his head shone like stars. "Bird,"
said the shoemaker, "now sing me that song again." "Nay," said the bird,
"I do not sing twice for nothing; thou must give me something." "Wife,"
said the man, "go to the garret, upon the top shelf there stands a pair
of red shoes, bring them down."  Then the wife went and brought the
shoes. "There, bird," said the man, "now sing me that piece again." Then
the bird came and took the shoes in his left claw, and flew back on the
roof, and sang,


 "My mother she killed me,
 My father he ate me,
 My sister, little Marlinchen,
 Gathered together all my bones,
 Tied them in a silken handkerchief,
 Laid them beneath the juniper-tree,

 Kywitt, kywitt, what a beautiful bird am I!"

And when he had sung the whole he flew away. In his right claw he had
the chain and the shoes in his left, and he flew far away to a mill,
and the mill went, "klipp klapp, klipp klapp, klipp klapp," and in the
mill sat twenty miller's men hewing a stone, and cutting, hick hack,
hick hack, hick hack, and the mill went klipp klapp, klipp klapp, klipp
klapp. Then the bird went and sat on a lime-tree which stood in front
of the mill, and sang,


 "My mother she killed me,"

Then one of them stopped working,


 "My father he ate me."

Then two more stopped working and listened to that,


 "My sister, little Marlinchen,"

Then four more stopped,


 "Gathered together all my bones,
 Tied them in a silken handkerchief,"

Now eight only were hewing,


 "Laid them beneath"

Now only five,


 "The juniper-tree,"

And now only one,


 "Kywitt, kywitt, what a beautiful bird am I!"

Then the last stopped also, and heard the last words. "Bird," said he,
"how beautifully thou singest! Let me, too, hear that. Sing that once
more for me."

"Nay," said the bird, "I will not sing twice for nothing. Give me the
millstone, and then I will sing it again."

"Yes," said he, "if it belonged to me only, thou shouldst have it."

"Yes," said the others, "if he sings again he shall have it." Then the
bird came down, and the twenty millers all set to work with a beam and
raised the stone up.  And the bird stuck his neck through the hole, and
put the stone on as if it were a collar, and flew on to the tree again,
and sang,


 "My mother she killed me,
 My father he ate me,
 My sister, little Marlinchen,
 Gathered together all my bones,
 Tied them in a silken handkerchief,
 Laid them beneath the juniper-tree,

 Kywitt, kywitt, what a beautiful bird am I!"

And when he had done singing, he spread his wings, and in his right
claw he had the chain, and in his left the shoes, and round his neck
the millstone, and he flew far away to his father's house.

In the room sat the father, the mother, and Marlinchen at dinner, and
the father said, "How light-hearted I feel, how happy I am!" "Nay,"
said the mother, "I feel so uneasy, just as if a heavy storm were
coming." Marlinchen, however, sat weeping and weeping, and then came the
bird flying, and as it seated itself on the roof the father said, "Ah,
I feel so truly happy, and the sun is shining so beautifully outside,
I feel just as if I were about to see some old friend again." "Nay,"
said the woman, "I feel so anxious, my teeth chatter, and I seem to have
fire in my veins." And she tore her stays open, but Marlinchen sat in
a corner crying, and held her plate before her eyes and cried till it
was quite wet. Then the bird sat on the juniper tree, and sang,


 "My mother she killed me,"

Then the mother stopped her ears, and shut her eyes, and would not see
or hear, but there was a roaring in her ears like the most violent storm,
and her eyes burnt and flashed like lightning,


 "My father he ate me,"

"Ah, mother," says the man, "that is a beautiful bird! He sings so
splendidly, and the sun shines so warm, and there is a smell just like
cinnamon."


 "My sister, little Marlinchen,"

Then Marlinchen laid her head on her knees and wept without ceasing, but
the man said, "I am going out, I must see the bird quite close." "Oh,
don't go," said the woman, "I feel as if the whole house were shaking
and on fire." But the man went out and looked at the bird:


 "Gathered together all my bones,
 Tied them in a silken handkerchief,
 Laid them beneath the juniper tree,
 Kywitt, kywitt, what a beautiful bird am I!"

On this the bird let the golden chain fall, and it fell exactly round
the man's neck, and so exactly round it that it fitted beautifully. Then
he went in and said, "Just look what a fine bird that is, and what
a handsome gold chain he has given me, and how pretty he is!" But the
woman was terrified, and fell down on the floor in the room, and her
cap fell off her head. Then sang the bird once more,


 "My mother she killed me."

"Would that I were a thousand feet beneath the earth so as not to
hear that!"


 "My father he ate me,"

Then the woman fell down again as if dead.


 "My sister, little Marlinchen,"

"Ah," said Marlinchen, "I too will go out and see if the bird will give
me anything," and she went out.


 "Gathered together all my bones,
 Tied them in a silken handkerchief,"

Then he threw down the shoes to her.


 "Laid them beneath the juniper-tree,
 Kywitt, kywitt, what a beautiful bird am I!"

Then she was light-hearted and joyous, and she put on the new red shoes,
and danced and leaped into the house. "Ah," said she, "I was so sad
when I went out and now I am so light-hearted; that is a splendid bird,
he has given me a pair of red shoes!" "Well," said the woman, and sprang
to her feet and her hair stood up like flames of fire, "I feel as if the
world were coming to an end! I, too, will go out and see if my heart feels
lighter." And as she went out at the door, crash! the bird threw down the
millstone on her head, and she was entirely crushed by it.  The father
and Marlinchen heard what had happened and went out, and smoke, flames,
and fire were rising from the place, and when that was over, there stood
the little brother, and he took his father and Marlinchen by the hand,
and all three were right glad, and they went into the house to dinner,
and ate.



48 Old Sultan

A farmer once had a faithful dog called Sultan, who had grown old, and
lost all his teeth, so that he could no longer hold anything fast. One
day the farmer was standing with his wife before the house-door, and said,
"To-morrow I intend to shoot Old Sultan, he is no longer of any use."

His wife, who felt pity for the faithful beast, answered, "He has served
us so long, and been so faithful, that we might well give him his keep."

"Eh! what?" said the man. "You are not very sharp. He has not a tooth
left in his mouth, and not a thief is afraid of him; now he may be
off. If he has served us, he has had good feeding for it."

The poor dog, who was lying stretched out in the sun not far off, had
heard everything, and was sorry that the morrow was to be his last day. He
had a good friend, the wolf, and he crept out in the evening into the
forest to him, and complained of the fate that awaited him. "Hark ye,
gossip," said the wolf, "be of good cheer, I will help you out of your
trouble. I have thought of something.  To-morrow, early in the morning,
your master is going with his wife to make hay, and they will take their
little child with them, for no one will be left behind in the house. They
are wont, during work-time, to lay the child under the hedge in the shade;
you lay yourself there too, just as if you wished to guard it. Then I will
come out of the wood, and carry off the child. You must rush swiftly after
me, as if you would seize it again from me. I will let it fall, and you
will take it back to its parents, who will think that you have saved it,
and will be far too grateful to do you any harm; on the contrary, you will
be in high favor, and they will never let you want for anything again."

The plan pleased the dog, and it was carried out just as it was
arranged. The father screamed when he saw the Wolf running across the
field with his child, but when Old Sultan brought it back, then he was
full of joy, and stroked him and said, "Not a hair of yours shall be
hurt, you shall eat my bread free as long as you live." And to his wife
he said, "Go home at once and make Old Sultan some bread-sop that he
will not have to bite, and bring the pillow out of my bed, I will give
him that to lie upon."

Henceforth Old Sultan was as well off as he could wish to be.

Soon afterwards the wolf visited him, and was pleased that everything
had succeeded so well. "But, gossip," said he, "you will just wink
an eye if when I have a chance, I carry off one of your master's fat
sheep." "Do not reckon upon that," answered the dog; "I will remain true
to my master; I cannot agree to that."  The wolf, who thought that this
could not be spoken in earnest, came creeping about in the night and
was going to take away the sheep. But the farmer, to whom the faithful
Sultan had told the wolf's plan, caught him and dressed his hide soundly
with the flail. The wolf had to pack off, but he cried out to the dog,
"Wait a bit, you scoundrel, you shall pay for this."

The next morning the wolf sent the boar to challenge the dog to come
out into the forest so that they might settle the affair. Old Sultan
could find no one to stand by him but a cat with only three legs, and
as they went out together the poor cat limped along, and at the same
time stretched out her tail into the air with pain.

The wolf and his friend were already on the spot appointed, but when they
saw their enemy coming they thought that he was bringing a sabre with
him, for they mistook the outstretched tail of the cat for one. And when
the poor beast hopped on its three legs, they could only think every time
that it was picking up a stone to throw at them. So they were both afraid;
the wild boar crept into the under-wood and the wolf jumped up a tree.

The dog and the cat, when they came up, wondered that there was no one
to be seen. The wild boar, however, had not been able to hide himself
altogether; and one of his ears was still to be seen. Whilst the cat was
looking carefully about, the boar moved his ear; the cat, who thought
it was a mouse moving there, jumped upon it and bit it hard. The boar
made a fearful noise and ran away, crying out, "The guilty one is up in
the tree." The dog and cat looked up and saw the wolf, who was ashamed
of having shown himself so timid, and made friends with the dog.



49 The Six Swans

Once upon a time, a certain King was hunting in a great forest, and
he chased a wild beast so eagerly that none of his attendants could
follow him. When evening drew near he stopped and looked around him,
and then he saw that he had lost his way. He sought a way out, but
could find none. Then he perceived an aged woman with a head which nodded
perpetually, who came towards him, but she was a witch. "Good woman," said
he to her, "Can you not show me the way through the forest?" "Oh, yes,
Lord King," she answered, "that I certainly can, but on one condition,
and if you do not fulfil that, you will never get out of the forest,
and will die of hunger in it."

"What kind of condition is it?" asked the King.

"I have a daughter," said the old woman, "who is as beautiful as any one
in the world, and well deserves to be your consort, and if you will make
her your Queen, I will show you the way out of the forest." In the anguish
of his heart the King consented, and the old woman led him to her little
hut, where her daughter was sitting by the fire. She received the King as
if she had been expecting him, and he saw that she was very beautiful,
but still she did not please him, and he could not look at her without
secret horror. After he had taken the maiden up on his horse, the old
woman showed him the way, and the King reached his royal palace again,
where the wedding was celebrated.

The King had already been married once, and had by his first wife, seven
children, six boys and a girl, whom he loved better than anything else
in the world. As he now feared that the step-mother might not treat them
well, and even do them some injury, he took them to a lonely castle which
stood in the midst of a forest. It lay so concealed, and the way was
so difficult to find that he himself would not have found it, if a wise
woman had not given him a ball of yarn with wonderful properties. When
he threw it down before him, it unrolled itself and showed him his
path. The King, however, went so frequently away to his dear children
that the Queen observed his absence; she was curious and wanted to know
what he did when he was quite alone in the forest. She gave a great deal
of money to his servants, and they betrayed the secret to her, and told
her likewise of the ball which alone could point out the way. And now she
knew no rest until she had learnt where the King kept the ball of yarn,
and then she made little shirts of white silk, and as she had learnt the
art of witchcraft from her mother, she sewed a charm inside them. And
once when the King had ridden forth to hunt, she took the little shirts
and went into the forest, and the ball showed her the way. The children,
who saw from a distance that some one was approaching, thought that their
dear father was coming to them, and full of joy, ran to meet him. Then
she threw one of the little shirts over each of them, and no sooner
had the shirts touched their bodies than they were changed into swans,
and flew away over the forest. The Queen went home quite delighted, and
thought she had got rid of her step-children, but the girl had not run
out with her brothers, and the Queen knew nothing about her. Next day
the King went to visit his children, but he found no one but the little
girl. "Where are thy brothers?"  asked the King. "Alas, dear father," she
answered, "they have gone away and left me alone!" and she told him that
she had seen from her little window how her brothers had flown away over
the forest in the shape of swans, and she showed him the feathers, which
they had let fall in the courtyard, and which she had picked up. The King
mourned, but he did not think that the Queen had done this wicked deed,
and as he feared that the girl would also be stolen away from him, he
wanted to take her away with him. But she was afraid of her step-mother,
and entreated the King to let her stay just this one night more in the
forest castle.

The poor girl thought, "I can no longer stay here. I will go and seek
my brothers." And when night came, she ran away, and went straight into
the forest.  She walked the whole night long, and next day also without
stopping, until she could go no farther for weariness. Then she saw a
forest-hut, and went into it, and found a room with six little beds,
but she did not venture to get into one of them, but crept under one,
and lay down on the hard ground, intending to pass the night there. Just
before sunset, however, she heard a rustling, and saw six swans come
flying in at the window. They alighted on the ground and blew at each
other, and blew all the feathers off, and their swan's skins stripped
off like a shirt. Then the maiden looked at them and recognized her
brothers, was glad and crept forth from beneath the bed. The brothers
were not less delighted to see their little sister, but their joy was of
short duration. "Here canst thou not abide," they said to her. "This is
a shelter for robbers, if they come home and find thee, they will kill
thee." "But can you not protect me?" asked the little sister. "No," they
replied, "only for one quarter of an hour each evening can we lay aside
our swan's skins and have during that time our human form; after that,
we are once more turned into swans." The little sister wept and said,
"Can you not be set free?" "Alas, no," they answered, "the conditions are
too hard! For six years thou mayst neither speak nor laugh, and in that
time thou must sew together six little shirts of starwort for us. And
if one single word falls from thy lips, all thy work will be lost." And
when the brothers had said this, the quarter of an hour was over, and
they flew out of the window again as swans.

The maiden, however, firmly resolved to deliver her brothers, even if
it should cost her her life. She left the hut, went into the midst of
the forest, seated herself on a tree, and there passed the night. Next
morning she went out and gathered starwort and began to sew. She could
not speak to any one, and she had no inclination to laugh; she sat
there and looked at nothing but her work. When she had already spent
a long time there it came to pass that the King of the country was
hunting in the forest, and his huntsmen came to the tree on which the
maiden was sitting. They called to her and said, "Who art thou?" But
she made no answer. "Come down to us," said they. "We will not do thee
any harm." She only shook her head. As they pressed her further with
questions she threw her golden necklace down to them, and thought to
content them thus. They, however, did not cease, and then she threw her
girdle down to them, and as this also was to no purpose, her garters,
and by degrees everything that she had on that she could do without until
she had nothing left but her shift. The huntsmen, however, did not let
themselves be turned aside by that, but climbed the tree and fetched the
maiden down and led her before the King. The King asked, "Who art thou?
What art thou doing on the tree?" But she did not answer. He put the
question in every language that he knew, but she remained as mute as a
fish. As she was so beautiful, the King's heart was touched, and he was
smitten with a great love for her. He put his mantle on her, took her
before him on his horse, and carried her to his castle. Then he caused
her to be dressed in rich garments, and she shone in her beauty like
bright daylight, but no word could be drawn from her. He placed her by
his side at table, and her modest bearing and courtesy pleased him so
much that he said, "She is the one whom I wish to marry, and no other
woman in the world." And after some days he united himself to her.

The King, however, had a wicked mother who was dissatisfied with this
marriage and spoke ill of the young Queen. "Who knows," said she, "from
whence the creature who can't speak, comes? She is not worthy of a king!"
After a year had passed, when the Queen brought her first child into the
world, the old woman took it away from her, and smeared her mouth with
blood as she slept. Then she went to the King and accused the Queen of
being a man-eater.  The King would not believe it, and would not suffer
any one to do her any injury.  She, however, sat continually sewing at
the shirts, and cared for nothing else.  The next time, when she again
bore a beautiful boy, the false step-mother used the same treachery, but
the King could not bring himself to give credit to her words. He said,
"She is too pious and good to do anything of that kind; if she were not
dumb, and could defend herself, her innocence would come to light."
But when the old woman stole away the newly-born child for the third
time, and accused the Queen, who did not utter one word of defence,
the King could do no otherwise than deliver her over to justice, and
she was sentenced to suffer death by fire.

When the day came for the sentence to be executed, it was the last day
of the six years during which she was not to speak or laugh, and she had
delivered her dear brothers from the power of the enchantment. The six
shirts were ready, only the left sleeve of the sixth was wanting. When,
therefore, she was led to the stake, she laid the shirts on her arm,
and when she stood on high and the fire was just going to be lighted,
she looked around and six swans came flying through the air towards
her. Then she saw that her deliverance was near, and her heart leapt with
joy. The swans swept towards her and sank down so that she could throw the
shirts over them, and as they were touched by them, their swan's skins
fell off, and her brothers stood in their own bodily form before her,
and were vigorous and handsome. The youngest only lacked his left arm,
and had in the place of it a swan's wing on his shoulder. They embraced
and kissed each other, and the Queen went to the King, who was greatly
moved, and she began to speak and said, "Dearest husband, now I may
speak and declare to thee that I am innocent, and falsely accused." And
she told him of the treachery of the old woman who had taken away her
three children and hidden them. Then to the great joy of the King they
were brought thither, and as a punishment, the wicked step-mother was
bound to the stake, and burnt to ashes. But the King and the Queen with
their six brothers lived many years in happiness and peace.



50 Briar-Rose

A long time ago there were a King and Queen who said every day, "Ah,
if only we had a child!" but they never had one. But it happened that
once when the Queen was bathing, a frog crept out of the water on to the
land, and said to her, "Your wish shall be fulfilled; before a year has
gone by, you shall have a daughter."

What the frog had said came true, and the Queen had a little girl who
was so pretty that the King could not contain himself for joy, and
ordered a great feast.  He invited not only his kindred, friends and
acquaintance, but also the Wise Women, in order that they might be kind
and well-disposed towards the child.  There were thirteen of them in his
kingdom, but, as he had only twelve golden plates for them to eat out of,
one of them had to be left at home.

The feast was held with all manner of splendour and when it came to an
end the Wise Women bestowed their magic gifts upon the baby: one gave
virtue, another beauty, a third riches, and so on with everything in
the world that one can wish for.

When eleven of them had made their promises, suddenly the thirteenth
came in.  She wished to avenge herself for not having been invited,
and without greeting, or even looking at any one, she cried with a loud
voice, "The King's daughter shall in her fifteenth year prick herself
with a spindle, and fall down dead." And, without saying a word more,
she turned round and left the room.

They were all shocked; but the twelfth, whose good wish still remained
unspoken, came forward, and as she could not undo the evil sentence,
but only soften it, she said, "It shall not be death, but a deep sleep
of a hundred years, into which the princess shall fall."

The King, who would fain keep his dear child from the misfortune, gave
orders that every spindle in the whole kingdom should be burnt. Meanwhile
the gifts of the Wise Women were plenteously fulfilled on the young girl,
for she was so beautiful, modest, good-natured, and wise, that everyone
who saw her was bound to love her.

It happened that on the very day when she was fifteen years old, the King
and Queen were not at home, and the maiden was left in the palace quite
alone. So she went round into all sorts of places, looked into rooms and
bed-chambers just as she liked, and at last came to an old tower. She
climbed up the narrow winding-staircase, and reached a little door. A
rusty key was in the lock, and when she turned it the door sprang open,
and there in a little room sat an old woman with a spindle, busily
spinning her flax.

"Good day, old dame," said the King's daughter; "what are you doing
there?" "I am spinning," said the old woman, and nodded her head. "What
sort of thing is that, that rattles round so merrily?" said the girl,
and she took the spindle and wanted to spin too. But scarcely had she
touched the spindle when the magic decree was fulfilled, and she pricked
her finger with it.

And, in the very moment when she felt the prick, she fell down upon the
bed that stood there, and lay in a deep sleep. And this sleep extended
over the whole palace; the King and Queen who had just come home,
and had entered the great hall, began to go to sleep, and the whole
of the court with them. The horses, too, went to sleep in the stable,
the dogs in the yard, the pigeons upon the roof, the flies on the wall;
even the fire that was flaming on the hearth became quiet and slept,
the roast meat left off frizzling, and the cook, who was just going to
pull the hair of the scullery boy, because he had forgotten something,
let him go, and went to sleep. And the wind fell, and on the trees before
the castle not a leaf moved again.

But round about the castle there began to grow a hedge of thorns,
which every year became higher, and at last grew close up round the
castle and all over it, so that there was nothing of it to be seen, not
even the flag upon the roof. But the story of the beautiful sleeping
"Briar-rose," for so the princess was named, went about the country,
so that from time to time kings' sons came and tried to get through the
thorny hedge into the castle.

But they found it impossible, for the thorns held fast together, as if
they had hands, and the youths were caught in them, could not get loose
again, and died a miserable death.

After long, long years a King's son came again to that country, and
heard an old man talking about the thorn-hedge, and that a castle was
said to stand behind it in which a wonderfully beautiful princess,
named Briar-rose, had been asleep for a hundred years; and that the
King and Queen and the whole court were asleep likewise. He had heard,
too, from his grandfather, that many kings' sons had already come,
and had tried to get through the thorny hedge, but they had remained
sticking fast in it, and had died a pitiful death. Then the youth said,
"I am not afraid, I will go and see the beautiful Briar-rose." The good
old man might dissuade him as he would, he did not listen to his words.

But by this time the hundred years had just passed, and the day had come
when Briar-rose was to awake again. When the King's son came near to
the thorn-hedge, it was nothing but large and beautiful flowers, which
parted from each other of their own accord, and let him pass unhurt,
then they closed again behind him like a hedge. In the castle-yard he
saw the horses and the spotted hounds lying asleep; on the roof sat the
pigeons with their heads under their wings. And when he entered the house,
the flies were asleep upon the wall, the cook in the kitchen was still
holding out his hand to seize the boy, and the maid was sitting by the
black hen which she was going to pluck.

He went on farther, and in the great hall he saw the whole of the court
lying asleep, and up by the throne lay the King and Queen.

Then he went on still farther, and all was so quiet that a breath could
be heard, and at last he came to the tower, and opened the door into the
little room where Briar-rose was sleeping. There she lay, so beautiful
that he could not turn his eyes away; and he stooped down and gave her a
kiss. But as soon as he kissed her, Briar-rose opened her eyes and awoke,
and looked at him quite sweetly.

Then they went down together, and the King awoke, and the Queen, and
the whole court, and looked at each other in great astonishment. And
the horses in the court-yard stood up and shook themselves; the hounds
jumped up and wagged their tails; the pigeons upon the roof pulled out
their heads from under their wings, looked round, and flew into the open
country; the flies on the wall crept again; the fire in the kitchen burned
up and flickered and cooked the meat; the joint began to turn and frizzle
again, and the cook gave the boy such a box on the ear that he screamed,
and the maid plucked the fowl ready for the spit.

And then the marriage of the King's son with Briar-rose was celebrated
with all splendour, and they lived contented to the end of their days.



51 Fundevogel (Bird-foundling)

There was once a forester who went into the forest to hunt, and as
he entered it he heard a sound of screaming as if a little child were
there. He followed the sound, and at last came to a high tree, and at
the top of this a little child was sitting, for the mother had fallen
asleep under the tree with the child, and a bird of prey had seen it in
her arms, had flown down, snatched it away, and set it on the high tree.

The forester climbed up, brought the child down, and thought to himself,
"Thou wilt take him home with thee, and bring him up with thy Lina." He
took it home, therefore, and the two children grew up together. The one,
however, which he had found on a tree was called Fundevogel, because
a bird had carried it away.  Fundevogel and Lina loved each other so
dearly that when they did not see each other they were sad.

The forester, however, had an old cook, who one evening took two pails
and began to fetch water, and did not go once only, but many times, out
to the spring. Lina saw this and said, "Hark you, old Sanna, why are you
fetching so much water?" "If thou wilt never repeat it to anyone, I will
tell thee why." So Lina said, no, she would never repeat it to anyone,
and then the cook said, "Early to-morrow morning, when the forester is
out hunting, I will heat the water, and when it is boiling in the kettle,
I will throw in Fundevogel, and will boil him in it."

Betimes next morning the forester got up and went out hunting, and when
he was gone the children were still in bed. Then Lina said to Fundevogel,
"If thou wilt never leave me, I too will never leave thee." Fundevogel
said, "Neither now, nor ever will I leave thee." Then said Lina, "Then
I will tell thee. Last night, old Sanna carried so many buckets of water
into the house that I asked her why she was doing that, and she said that
if I would promise not to tell any one she would tell me, and I said
I would be sure not to tell any one, and she said that early to-morrow
morning when father was out hunting, she would set the kettle full of
water, throw thee into it and boil thee; but we will get up quickly,
dress ourselves, and go away together."

The two children therefore got up, dressed themselves quickly, and went
away.  When the water in the kettle was boiling, the cook went into the
bed-room to fetch Fundevogel and throw him into it. But when she came
in, and went to the beds, both the children were gone. Then she was
terribly alarmed, and she said to herself, "What shall I say now when
the forester comes home and sees that the children are gone? They must
be followed instantly to get them back again."

Then the cook sent three servants after them, who were to run and
overtake the children. The children, however, were sitting outside
the forest, and when they saw from afar the three servants running,
Lina said to Fundevogel, "Never leave me, and I will never leave
thee." Fundevogel said, "Neither now, nor ever." Then said Lina,
"Do thou become a rose-tree, and I the rose upon it." When the three
servants came to the forest, nothing was there but a rose-tree and
one rose on it, but the children were nowhere. Then said they, "There
is nothing to be done here," and they went home and told the cook that
they had seen nothing in the forest but a little rose-bush with one rose
on it. Then the old cook scolded and said, "You simpletons, you should
have cut the rose-bush in two, and have broken off the rose and brought
it home with you; go, and do it once." They had therefore to go out and
look for the second time. The children, however, saw them coming from a
distance. Then Lina said, "Fundevogel, never leave me, and I will never
leave thee." Fundevogel said, "Neither now, nor ever." Said Lina, "Then
do thou become a church, and I'll be the chandelier in it." So when the
three servants came, nothing was there but a church, with a chandelier
in it. They said therefore to each other, "What can we do here, let us
go home." When they got home, the cook asked if they had not found them;
so they said no, they had found nothing but a church, and that there was
a chandelier in it. And the cook scolded them and said, "You fools! why
did you not pull the church to pieces, and bring the chandelier home
with you?" And now the old cook herself got on her legs, and went with
the three servants in pursuit of the children. The children, however,
saw from afar that the three servants were coming, and the cook waddling
after them. Then said Lina, "Fundevogel, never leave me, and I will never
leave thee." Then said Fundevogel, "Neither now, nor ever." Said Lina,
"Be a fishpond, and I will be the duck upon it." The cook, however,
came up to them, and when she saw the pond she lay down by it, and was
about to drink it up. But the duck swam quickly to her, seized her head
in its beak and drew her into the water, and there the old witch had to
drown. Then the children went home together, and were heartily delighted,
and if they are not dead, they are living still.



52 King Thrushbeard

A King had a daughter who was beautiful beyond all measure, but so proud
and haughty withal that no suitor was good enough for her. She sent away
one after the other, and ridiculed them as well.

Once the King made a great feast and invited thereto, from far and
near, all the young men likely to marry. They were all marshalled
in a row according to their rank and standing; first came the kings,
then the grand-dukes, then the princes, the earls, the barons, and the
gentry. Then the King's daughter was led through the ranks, but to every
one she had some objection to make; one was too fat, "The wine-cask,"
she said. Another was too tall, "Long and thin has little in." The third
was too short, "Short and thick is never quick." The fourth was too pale,
"As pale as death." The fifth too red, "A fighting-cock." The sixth was
not straight enough, "A green log dried behind the stove."

So she had something to say against every one, but she made herself
especially merry over a good king who stood quite high up in the row,
and whose chin had grown a little crooked. "Well," she cried and laughed,
"he has a chin like a thrush's beak!" and from that time he got the name
of King Thrushbeard.

But the old King, when he saw that his daugher did nothing but mock the
people, and despised all the suitors who were gathered there, was very
angry, and swore that she should have for her husband the very first
beggar that came to his doors.

A few days afterwards a fiddler came and sang beneath the windows,
trying to earn a small alms. When the King heard him he said, "Let him
come up." So the fiddler came in, in his dirty, ragged clothes, and sang
before the King and his daughter, and when he had ended he asked for a
trifling gift. The King said, "Your song has pleased me so well that I
will give you my daughter there, to wife."

The King's daughter shuddered, but the King said, "I have taken an oath
to give you to the very first beggar-man, and I will keep it." All she
could say was in vain; the priest was brought, and she had to let herself
be wedded to the fiddler on the spot. When that was done the King said,
"Now it is not proper for you, a beggar-woman, to stay any longer in my
palace, you may just go away with your husband."

The beggar-man led her out by the hand, and she was obliged to walk away
on foot with him. When they came to a large forest she asked, "To whom
does that beautiful forest belong?" "It belongs to King Thrushbeard;
if you had taken him, it would have been yours." "Ah, unhappy girl that
I am, if I had but taken King Thrushbeard!"

Afterwards they came to a meadow, and she asked again, "To whom does
this beautiful green meadow belong?" "It belongs to King Thrushbeard;
if you had taken him, it would have been yours." "Ah, unhappy girl that
I am, if I had but taken King Thrushbeard!"

Then they came to a large town, and she asked again, "To whom does
this fine large town belong?" "It belongs to King Thrushbeard; if you
had taken him, it would have been yours." "Ah, unhappy girl that I am,
if I had but taken King Thrushbeard!"

"It does not please me," said the fiddler, "to hear you always wishing
for another husband; am I not good enough for you?" At last they came
to a very little hut, and she said, "Oh goodness! what a small house;
to whom does this miserable, mean hovel belong?" The fiddler answered,
"That is my house and yours, where we shall live together."

She had to stoop in order to go in at the low door. "Where are the
servants?"  said the King's daughter. "What servants?" answered the
beggar-man; "you must yourself do what you wish to have done. Just make a
fire at once, and set on water to cook my supper, I am quite tired." But
the King's daughter knew nothing about lighting fires or cooking, and the
beggar-man had to lend a hand himself to get anything fairly done. When
they had finished their scanty meal they went to bed; but he forced her
to get up quite early in the morning in order to look after the house.

For a few days they lived in this way as well as might be, and came to
the end of all their provisions. Then the man said, "Wife, we cannot go
on any longer eating and drinking here and earning nothing. You weave
baskets." He went out, cut some willows, and brought them home. Then
she began to weave, but the tough willows wounded her delicate hands.

"I see that this will not do," said the man; "you had better spin,
perhaps you can do that better." She sat down and tried to spin, but the
hard thread soon cut her soft fingers so that the blood ran down. "See,"
said the man, "you are fit for no sort of work; I have made a bad bargain
with you. Now I will try to make a business with pots and earthenware;
you must sit in the market-place and sell the ware." "Alas," thought she,
"if any of the people from my father's kingdom come to the market and see
me sitting there, selling, how they will mock me?" But it was of no use,
she had to yield unless she chose to die of hunger.

For the first time she succeeded well, for the people were glad to buy
the woman's wares because she was good-looking, and they paid her what
she asked; many even gave her the money and left the pots with her as
well. So they lived on what she had earned as long as it lasted, then the
husband bought a lot of new crockery. With this she sat down at the corner
of the market-place, and set it out round about her ready for sale. But
suddenly there came a drunken hussar galloping along, and he rode right
amongst the pots so that they were all broken into a thousand bits. She
began to weep, and did now know what to do for fear. "Alas! what will
happen to me?" cried she; "what will my husband say to this?"

She ran home and told him of the misfortune. "Who would seat herself
at a corner of the market-place with crockery?" said the man; "leave
off crying, I see very well that you cannot do any ordinary work, so
I have been to our King's palace and have asked whether they cannot
find a place for a kitchen-maid, and they have promised me to take you;
in that way you will get your food for nothing."

The King's daughter was now a kitchen-maid, and had to be at the cook's
beck and call, and do the dirtiest work. In both her pockets she fastened
a little jar, in which she took home her share of the leavings, and upon
this they lived.

It happened that the wedding of the King's eldest son was to be
celebrated, so the poor woman went up and placed herself by the door of
the hall to look on.  When all the candles were lit, and people, each
more beautiful than the other, entered, and all was full of pomp and
splendour, she thought of her lot with a sad heart, and cursed the pride
and haughtiness which had humbled her and brought her to so great poverty.

The smell of the delicious dishes which were being taken in and out
reached her, and now and then the servants threw her a few morsels of
them: these she put in her jars to take home.

All at once the King's son entered, clothed in velvet and silk, with gold
chains about his neck. And when he saw the beautiful woman standing by the
door he seized her by the hand, and would have danced with her; but she
refused and shrank with fear, for she saw that it was King Thrushbeard,
her suitor whom she had driven away with scorn. Her struggles were of no
avail, he drew her into the hall; but the string by which her pockets
were hung broke, the pots fell down, the soup ran out, and the scraps
were scattered all about. And when the people saw it, there arose general
laughter and derision, and she was so ashamed that she would rather have
been a thousand fathoms below the ground. She sprang to the door and would
have run away, but on the stairs a man caught her and brought her back;
and when she looked at him it was King Thrushbeard again. He said to her
kindly, "Do not be afraid, I and the fiddler who has been living with you
in that wretched hovel are one. For love of you I disguised myself so;
and I also was the hussar who rode through your crockery. This was all
done to humble your proud spirit, and to punish you for the insolence
with which you mocked me."

Then she wept bitterly and said, "I have done great wrong, and am not
worthy to be your wife." But he said, "Be comforted, the evil days are
past; now we will celebrate our wedding." Then the maids-in-waiting came
and put on her the most splendid clothing, and her father and his whole
court came and wished her happiness in her marriage with King Thrushbeard,
and the joy now began in earnest. I wish you and I had been there too.



53 Little Snow-white

Once upon a time in the middle of winter, when the flakes of snow were
falling like feathers from the sky, a queen sat at a window sewing,
and the frame of the window was made of black ebony. And whilst she
was sewing and looking out of the window at the snow, she pricked her
finger with the needle, and three drops of blood fell upon the snow. And
the red looked pretty upon the white snow, and she thought to herself,
"Would that I had a child as white as snow, as red as blood, and as
black as the wood of the window-frame."

Soon after that she had a little daughter, who was as white as snow, and
as red as blood, and her hair was as black as ebony; and she was therefore
called Little Snow-white. And when the child was born, the Queen died.

After a year had passed the King took to himself another wife. She was a
beautiful woman, but proud and haughty, and she could not bear that anyone
else should surpass her in beauty. She had a wonderful looking-glass,
and when she stood in front of it and looked at herself in it, and said---


 "Looking-glass, Looking-glass, on the wall,
 Who in this land is the fairest of all?"

the looking-glass answered---


 "Thou, O Queen, art the fairest of all!"

Then she was satisfied, for she knew that the looking-glass spoke
the truth.

But Snow-white was growing up, and grew more and more beautiful; and
when she was seven years old she was as beautiful as the day, and more
beautiful than the Queen herself. And once when the Queen asked her
looking-glass --

"Looking-glass, Looking-glass, on the wall, Who in this land is the
fairest of all?"

it answered---


 "Thou art fairer than all who are here, Lady Queen."
 But more beautiful still is Snow-white, as I ween."

Then the Queen was shocked, and turned yellow and green with envy. From
that hour, whenever she looked at Snow-white, her heart heaved in her
breast, she hated the girl so much.

And envy and pride grew higher and higher in her heart like a weed,
so that she had no peace day or night. She called a huntsman, and said,
"Take the child away into the forest; I will no longer have her in my
sight. Kill her, and bring me back her heart as a token." The huntsman
obeyed, and took her away; but when he had drawn his knife, and was about
to pierce Snow-white's innocent heart, she began to weep, and said, "Ah
dear huntsman, leave me my life! I will run away into the wild forest,
and never come home again."

And as she was so beautiful the huntsman had pity on her and said, "Run
away, then, you poor child." "The wild beasts will soon have devoured
you," thought he, and yet it seemed as if a stone had been rolled from
his heart since it was no longer needful for him to kill her. And as
a young boar just then came running by he stabbed it, and cut out its
heart and took it to the Queen as proof that the child was dead. The
cook had to salt this, and the wicked Queen ate it, and thought she had
eaten the heart of Snow-white.

But now the poor child was all alone in the great forest, and so terrified
that she looked at every leaf of every tree, and did not know what to
do. Then she began to run, and ran over sharp stones and through thorns,
and the wild beasts ran past her, but did her no harm.

She ran as long as her feet would go until it was almost evening; then
she saw a little cottage and went into it to rest herself. Everything
in the cottage was small, but neater and cleaner than can be told. There
was a table on which was a white cover, and seven little plates, and on
each plate a little spoon; moreover, there were seven little knives and
forks, and seven little mugs. Against the wall stood seven little beds
side by side, and covered with snow-white counterpanes.

Little Snow-white was so hungry and thirsty that she ate some vegetables
and bread from each plate and drank a drop of wine out of each mug, for
she did not wish to take all from one only. Then, as she was so tired,
she laid herself down on one of the little beds, but none of them suited
her; one was too long, another too short, but at last she found that the
seventh one was right, and so she remained in it, said a prayer and went
to sleep.

When it was quite dark the owners of the cottage came back; they were
seven dwarfs who dug and delved in the mountains for ore. They lit their
seven candles, and as it was now light within the cottage they saw that
someone had been there, for everything was not in the same order in
which they had left it.

The first said, "Who has been sitting on my chair?"

The second, "Who has been eating off my plate?"

The third, "Who has been taking some of my bread?"

The fourth, "Who has been eating my vegetables?"

The fifth, "Who has been using my fork?"

The sixth, "Who has been cutting with my knife?"

The seventh, "Who has been drinking out of my mug?"

Then the first looked round and saw that there was a little hole on his
bed, and he said, "Who has been getting into my bed?" The others came
up and each called out, "Somebody has been lying in my bed too." But
the seventh when he looked at his bed saw little Snow-white, who was
lying asleep therein. And he called the others, who came running up,
and they cried out with astonishment, and brought their seven little
candles and let the light fall on little Snow-white.  "Oh, heavens! oh,
heavens!" cried they, "what a lovely child!" and they were so glad that
they did not wake her up, but let her sleep on in the bed. And the seventh
dwarf slept with his companions, one hour with each, and so got through
the night.

When it was morning little Snow-white awoke, and was frightened when she
saw the seven dwarfs. But they were friendly and asked her what her name
was. "My name is Snow-white," she answered. "How have you come to our
house?" said the dwarfs. Then she told them that her step-mother had
wished to have her killed, but that the huntsman had spared her life,
and that she had run for the whole day, until at last she had found their
dwelling. The dwarfs said, "If you will take care of our house, cook,
make the beds, wash, sew, and knit, and if you will keep everything neat
and clean, you can stay with us and you shall want for nothing." "Yes,"
said Snow-white, "with all my heart," and she stayed with them.  She kept
the house in order for them; in the mornings they went to the mountains
and looked for copper and gold, in the evenings they came back, and
then their supper had to be ready. The girl was alone the whole day,
so the good dwarfs warned her and said, "Beware of your step-mother,
she will soon know that you are here; be sure to let no one come in."

But the Queen, believing that she had eaten Snow-white's heart, could
not but think that she was again the first and most beautiful of all;
and she went to her looking-glass and said---


 "Looking-glass, Looking-glass, on the wall,
 Who in this land is the fairest of all?"

and the glass answered --


 "Oh, Queen, thou art fairest of all I see,
 But over the hills, where the seven dwarfs dwell,
 Snow-white is still alive and well,

 And none is so fair as she."

Then she was astounded, for she knew that the looking-glass never spoke
falsely, and she knew that the huntsman had betrayed her, and that little
Snow-white was still alive.

And so she thought and thought again how she might kill her, for so
long as she was not the fairest in the whole land, envy let her have no
rest. And when she had at last thought of something to do, she painted
her face, and dressed herself like an old pedler-woman, and no one could
have known her. In this disguise she went over the seven mountains to the
seven dwarfs, and knocked at the door and cried, "Pretty things to sell,
very cheap, very cheap." Little Snow-white looked out of the window and
called out, "Good-day my good woman, what have you to sell?" "Good things,
pretty things," she answered; "stay-laces of all colours," and she pulled
out one which was woven of bright-coloured silk. "I may let the worthy
old woman in," thought Snow-white, and she unbolted the door and bought
the pretty laces. "Child," said the old woman, "what a fright you look;
come, I will lace you properly for once." Snow-white had no suspicion,
but stood before her, and let herself be laced with the new laces. But
the old woman laced so quickly and so tightly that Snow-white lost her
breath and fell down as if dead. "Now I am the most beautiful," said
the Queen to herself, and ran away.

Not long afterwards, in the evening, the seven dwarfs came home, but
how shocked they were when they saw their dear little Snow-white lying
on the ground, and that she neither stirred nor moved, and seemed to be
dead. They lifted her up, and, as they saw that she was laced too tightly,
they cut the laces; then she began to breathe a little, and after a while
came to life again. When the dwarfs heard what had happened they said,
"The old pedler-woman was no one else than the wicked Queen; take care
and let no one come in when we are not with you."

But the wicked woman when she had reached home went in front of the
glass and asked---


 "Looking-glass, Looking-glass, on the wall,
 Who in this land is the fairest of all?"

and it answered as before---


 "Oh, Queen, thou art fairest of all I see,
 But over the hills, where the seven dwarfs dwell,
 Snow-white is still alive and well,

 And none is so fair as she."

When she heard that, all her blood rushed to her heart with fear, for she
saw plainly that little Snow-white was again alive. "But now," she said,
"I will think of something that shall put an end to you," and by the help
of witchcraft, which she understood, she made a poisonous comb. Then
she disguised herself and took the shape of another old woman. So she
went over the seven mountains to the seven dwarfs, knocked at the door,
and cried, "Good things to sell, cheap, cheap!" Little Snow-white looked
out and said, "Go away; I cannot let any one come in." "I suppose you can
look," said the old woman, and pulled the poisonous comb out and held
it up. It pleased the girl so well that she let herself be beguiled,
and opened the door. When they had made a bargain the old woman said,
"Now I will comb you properly for once." Poor little Snow-white had no
suspicion, and let the old woman do as she pleased, but hardly had she
put the comb in her hair than the poison in it took effect, and the girl
fell down senseless. "You paragon of beauty," said the wicked woman,
"you are done for now," and she went away.

But fortunately it was almost evening, when the seven dwarfs came
home. When they saw Snow-white lying as if dead upon the ground they at
once suspected the step-mother, and they looked and found the poisoned
comb. Scarcely had they taken it out when Snow-white came to herself,
and told them what had happened. Then they warned her once more to be
upon her guard and to open the door to no one.

The Queen, at home, went in front of the glass and said---


 "Looking-glass, Looking-glass, on the wall,
 Who in this land is the fairest of all?"

then it answered as before---


 "Oh, Queen, thou art fairest of all I see,
 But over the hills, where the seven dwarfs dwell,
 Snow-white is still alive and well,

 And none is so fair as she."

When she heard the glass speak thus she trembled and shook with rage.
"Snow-white shall die," she cried, "even if it costs me my life!"

Thereupon she went into a quite secret, lonely room, where no one ever
came, and there she made a very poisonous apple. Outside it looked
pretty, white with a red cheek, so that everyone who saw it longed for
it; but whoever ate a piece of it must surely die.

When the apple was ready she painted her face, and dressed herself up
as a country-woman, and so she went over the seven mountains to the
seven dwarfs.  She knocked at the door. Snow-white put her head out
of the window and said, "I cannot let any one in; the seven dwarfs
have forbidden me." "It is all the same to me," answered the woman,
"I shall soon get rid of my apples. There, I will give you one."

"No," said Snow-white, "I dare not take anything." "Are you afraid
of poison?"  said the old woman; "look, I will cut the apple in two
pieces; you eat the red cheek, and I will eat the white." The apple
was so cunningly made that only the red cheek was poisoned. Snow-white
longed for the fine apple, and when she saw that the woman ate part of
it she could resist no longer, and stretched out her hand and took the
poisonous half. But hardly had she a bit of it in her mouth than she
fell down dead. Then the Queen looked at her with a dreadful look, and
laughed aloud and said, "White as snow, red as blood, black as ebony-wood!
this time the dwarfs cannot wake you up again."

And when she asked of the Looking-glass at home---


 "Looking-glass, Looking-glass, on the wall,
 Who in this land is the fairest of all?"

it answered at last --


 "Oh, Queen, in this land thou art fairest of all."

Then her envious heart had rest, so far as an envious heart can have rest.

The dwarfs, when they came home in the evening, found Snow-white lying
upon the ground; she breathed no longer and was dead. They lifted her up,
looked to see whether they could find anything poisonous, unlaced her,
combed her hair, washed her with water and wine, but it was all of no use;
the poor child was dead, and remained dead. They laid her upon a bier, and
all seven of them sat round it and wept for her, and wept three days long.

Then they were going to bury her, but she still looked as if she were
living, and still had her pretty red cheeks. They said, "We could not
bury her in the dark ground," and they had a transparent coffin of
glass made, so that she could be seen from all sides, and they laid
her in it, and wrote her name upon it in golden letters, and that she
was a king's daughter. Then they put the coffin out upon the mountain,
and one of them always stayed by it and watched it. And birds came too,
and wept for Snow-white; first an owl, then a raven, and last a dove.

And now Snow-white lay a long, long time in the coffin, and she did not
change, but looked as if she were asleep; for she was as white as snow,
as red as blood, and her hair was as black as ebony.

It happened, however, that a king's son came into the forest, and went to
the dwarfs' house to spend the night. He saw the coffin on the mountain,
and the beautiful Snow-white within it, and read what was written upon it
in golden letters. Then he said to the dwarfs, "Let me have the coffin,
I will give you whatever you want for it." But the dwarfs answered,
"We will not part with it for all the gold in the world." Then he said,
"Let me have it as a gift, for I cannot live without seeing Snow-white. I
will honour and prize her as my dearest possession." As he spoke in this
way the good dwarfs took pity upon him, and gave him the coffin.

And now the King's son had it carried away by his servants on their
shoulders.  And it happened that they stumbled over a tree-stump,
and with the shock the poisonous piece of apple which Snow-white had
bitten off came out of her throat. And before long she opened her eyes,
lifted up the lid of the coffin, sat up, and was once more alive. "Oh,
heavens, where am I?" she cried. The King's son, full of joy, said,
"You are with me," and told her what had happened, and said, "I love you
more than everything in the world; come with me to my father's palace,
you shall be my wife."

And Snow-white was willing, and went with him, and their wedding was
held with great show and splendour. But Snow-white's wicked step-mother
was also bidden to the feast. When she had arrayed herself in beautiful
clothes she went before the Looking-glass, and said---


 "Looking-glass, Looking-glass, on the wall,
 Who in this land is the fairest of all?"

the glass answered---


 "Oh, Queen, of all here the fairest art thou,
 But the young Queen is fairer by far as I trow."

Then the wicked woman uttered a curse, and was so wretched, so utterly
wretched, that she knew not what to do. At first she would not go to
the wedding at all, but she had no peace, and must go to see the young
Queen. And when she went in she knew Snow-white; and she stood still
with rage and fear, and could not stir. But iron slippers had already
been put upon the fire, and they were brought in with tongs, and set
before her. Then she was forced to put on the red-hot shoes, and dance
until she dropped down dead.



54 The Knapsack, the Hat, and the Horn

There were once three brothers who had fallen deeper and deeper into
poverty, and at last their need was so great that they had to endure
hunger, and had nothing to eat or drink. Then said they, "We cannot
go on thus, we had better go into the world and seek our fortune." They
therefore set out, and had already walked over many a long road and many a
blade of grass, but had not yet met with good luck. One day they arrived
in a great forest, and in the midst of it was a hill, and when they came
nearer they saw that the hill was all silver. Then spoke the eldest,
"Now I have found the good luck I wished for, and I desire nothing
more." He took as much of the silver as he could possibly carry, and
then turned back and went home again. But the two others said, "We want
something more from good luck than mere silver," and did not touch it,
but went onwards. After they had walked for two days longer without
stopping, they came to a hill which was all gold. The second brother
stopped, took thought with himself, and was undecided. "What shall I
do?" said he; "shall I take for myself so much of this gold, that I
have sufficient for all the rest of my life, or shall I go farther?" At
length he made a decision, and putting as much into his pockets as would
go in, said farewell to his brother, and went home. But the third said,
"Silver and gold do not move me, I will not renounce my chance of fortune,
perhaps something better still will be given me." He journeyed onwards,
and when he had walked for three days, he got into a forest which was
still larger than the one before, and never would come to an end, and
as he found nothing to eat or to drink, he was all but exhausted. Then
he climbed up a high tree to find out if up there he could see the end
of the forest, but so far as his eye could pierce he saw nothing but
the tops of trees. Then he began to descend the tree again, but hunger
tormented him, and he thought to himself, "If I could but eat my fill
once more!" When he got down he saw with astonishment a table beneath
the tree richly spread with food, the steam of which rose up to meet
him. "This time," said he, "my wish has been fulfilled at the right
moment." And without inquiring who had brought the food, or who had
cooked it, he approached the table, and ate with enjoyment until he had
appeased his hunger. When he was done, he thought, "It would after all be
a pity if the pretty little table-cloth were to be spoilt in the forest
here," and folded it up tidily and put it in his pocket. Then he went
onwards, and in the evening, when hunger once more made itself felt, he
wanted to make a trial of his little cloth, and spread it out and said,
"I wish thee to be covered with good cheer again," and scarcely had the
wish crossed his lips than as many dishes with the most exquisite food
on them stood on the table as there was room for. "Now I perceive,"
said he, "in what kitchen my cooking is done. Thou shalt be dearer to
me than the mountains of silver and gold." For he saw plainly that it
was a wishing-cloth. The cloth, however, was still not enough to enable
him to sit down quietly at home; he preferred to wander about the world
and pursue his fortune farther.

One night he met, in a lonely wood, a dusty, black charcoal-burner,
who was burning charcoal there, and had some potatoes by the fire, on
which he was going to make a meal. "Good evening, blackbird!" said the
youth. "How dost thou get on in thy solitude?"

"One day is like another," replied the charcoal-burner, "and every
night potatoes!  Hast thou a mind to have some, and wilt thou be my
guest?" "Many thanks," replied the traveler, "I won't rob thee of thy
supper; thou didst not reckon on a visitor, but if thou wilt put up with
what I have, thou shalt have an invitation."

"Who is to prepare it for thee?" said the charcoal-burner. "I see that
thou hast nothing with thee, and there is no one within a two hours' walk
who could give thee anything." "And yet there shall be a meal," answered
the youth, "and better than any thou hast ever tasted." Thereupon he
brought his cloth out of his knapsack, spread it on the ground, and said,
"Little cloth, cover thyself," and instantly boiled meat and baked meat
stood there, and as hot as if it had just come out of the kitchen. The
charcoal-burner stared, but did not require much pressing; he fell to, and
thrust larger and larger mouthfuls into his black mouth.  When they had
eaten everything, the charcoal-burner smiled contentedly, and said, "Hark
thee, thy table-cloth has my approval; it would be a fine thing for me in
this forest, where no one ever cooks me anything good. I will propose an
exchange to thee; there in the corner hangs a soldier's knapsack, which
is certainly old and shabby, but in it lie concealed wonderful powers;
but, as I no longer use it, I will give it to thee for the table-cloth."

"I must first know what these wonderful powers are," answered the youth.

"That will I tell thee," replied the charcoal-burner; "every time thou
tappest it with thy hand, a corporal comes with six men armed from
head to foot, and they do whatsoever thou commandest them." "So far as
I am concerned," said the youth, "if nothing else can be done, we will
exchange," and he gave the charcoal-burner the cloth, took the knapsack
from the hook, put it on, and bade farewell. When he had walked a while,
he wished to make a trial of the magical powers of his knapsack and
tapped it. Immediately the seven warriors stepped up to him, and the
corporal said, "What does my lord and ruler wish for?"

"March with all speed to the charcoal-burner, and demand my wishing-cloth
back." They faced to the left, and it was not long before they brought
what he required, and had taken it from the charcoal-burner without
asking many questions. The young man bade them retire, went onwards,
and hoped fortune would shine yet more brightly on him. By sunset he
came to another charcoal-burner, who was making his supper ready by the
fire. "If thou wilt eat some potatoes with salt, but with no dripping,
come and sit down with me," said the sooty fellow.

"No, he replied, this time thou shalt be my guest," and he spread out his
cloth, which was instantly covered with the most beautiful dishes. They
ate and drank together, and enjoyed themselves heartily. After the meal
was over, the charcoal-burner said, "Up there on that shelf lies a little
old worn-out hat which has strange properties: when any one puts it on,
and turns it round on his head, the cannons go off as if twelve were
fired all together, and they shoot down everything so that no one can
withstand them. The hat is of no use to me, and I will willingly give
it for thy table-cloth."

"That suits me very well," he answered, took the hat, put it on,
and left his table-cloth behind him. Hardly, however, had he walked
away than he tapped on his knapsack, and his soldiers had to fetch the
cloth back again. "One thing comes on the top of another," thought he,
"and I feel as if my luck had not yet come to an end." Neither had
his thoughts deceived him. After he had walked on for the whole of one
day, he came to a third charcoal-burner, who like the previous ones,
invited him to potatoes without dripping. But he let him also dine with
him from his wishing-cloth, and the charcoal-burner liked it so well,
that at last he offered him a horn for it, which had very different
properties from those of the hat. When any one blew it all the walls and
fortifications fell down, and all towns and villages became ruins. He
certainly gave the charcoal-burner the cloth for it, but he afterwards
sent his soldiers to demand it back again, so that at length he had the
knapsack, hat and horn, all three. "Now," said he, "I am a made man,
and it is time for me to go home and see how my brothers are getting on."

When he reached home, his brothers had built themselves a handsome house
with their silver and gold, and were living in clover. He went to see
them, but as he came in a ragged coat, with his shabby hat on his head,
and his old knapsack on his back, they would not acknowledge him as their
brother. They mocked and said, "Thou givest out that thou art our brother
who despised silver and gold, and craved for something still better for
himself. He will come in his carriage in full splendour like a mighty
king, not like a beggar," and they drove him out of doors. Then he fell
into a rage, and tapped his knapsack until a hundred and fifty men stood
before him armed from head to foot. He commanded them to surround his
brothers' house, and two of them were to take hazel-sticks with them,
and beat the two insolent men until they knew who he was. A violent
disturbance arose, people ran together, and wanted to lend the two some
help in their need, but against the soldiers they could do nothing. News
of this at length came to the King, who was very angry, and ordered
a captain to march out with his troop, and drive this disturber of
the peace out of the town; but the man with the knapsack soon got a
greater body of men together, who repulsed the captain and his men,
so that they were forced to retire with bloody noses. The King said,
"This vagabond is not brought to order yet," and next day sent a still
larger troop against him, but they could do even less. The youth set
still more men against them, and in order to be done the sooner, he
turned his hat twice round on his head, and heavy guns began to play,
and the king's men were beaten and put to flight. "And now," said he,
"I will not make peace until the King gives me his daughter to wife, and
I govern the whole kingdom in his name." He caused this to be announced
to the King, and the latter said to his daughter, "Necessity is a hard
nut to crack, what remains to me but to do what he desires? If I want
peace and to keep the crown on my head, I must give thee away."

So the wedding was celebrated, but the King's daughter was vexed that
her husband should be a common man, who wore a shabby hat, and put on
an old knapsack. She wished much to get rid of him, and night and day
studied how she could accomplished this. Then she thought to herself,
"Is it possible that his wonderful powers lie in the knapsack?" and she
dissembled and caressed him, and when his heart was softened, she said,
"If thou wouldst but lay aside that ugly knapsack, it makes disfigures
thee so, that I can't help being ashamed of thee." "Dear child," said he,
"this knapsack is my greatest treasure; as long as I have it, there is no
power on earth that I am afraid of." And he revealed to her the wonderful
virtue with which it was endowed. Then she threw herself in his arms as
if she were going to kiss him, but dexterously took the knapsack off his
shoulders, and ran away with it. As soon as she was alone she tapped it,
and commanded the warriors to seize their former master, and take him out
of the royal palace. They obeyed, and the false wife sent still more men
after him, who were to drive him quite out of the country. Then he would
have been ruined if he had not had the little hat. But his hands were
scarcely at liberty before he turned it twice. Immediately the cannon
began to thunder, and struck down everything, and the King's daughter
herself was forced to come and beg for mercy. As she entreated in such
moving terms, and promised amendment, he allowed himself to be persuaded
and granted her peace. She behaved in a friendly manner to him, and acted
as if she loved him very much, and after some time managed so to befool
him, that he confided to her that even if someone got the knapsack into
his power, he could do nothing against him so long as the old hat was
still his.  When she knew the secret, she waited until he was asleep,
and then she took the hat away from him, and had it thrown out into the
street. But the horn still remained to him, and in great anger he blew
it with all his strength. Instantly all walls, fortifications, towns,
and villages, toppled down, and crushed the King and his daughter to
death. And had he not put down the horn and had blown just a little
longer, everything would have been in ruins, and not one stone would
have been left standing on another. Then no one opposed him any longer,
and he made himself King of the whole country.



55 Rumpelstiltskin

Once there was a miller who was poor, but who had a beautiful
daughter. Now it happened that he had to go and speak to the King, and in
order to make himself appear important he said to him, "I have a daughter
who can spin straw into gold." The King said to the miller, "That is
an art which pleases me well; if your daughter is as clever as you say,
bring her to-morrow to my palace, and I will try what she can do."

And when the girl was brought to him he took her into a room which was
quite full of straw, gave her a spinning-wheel and a reel, and said, "Now
set to work, and if by to-morrow morning early you have not spun this
straw into gold during the night, you must die." Thereupon he himself
locked up the room, and left her in it alone. So there sat the poor
miller's daughter, and for the life of her could not tell what to do;
she had no idea how straw could be spun into gold, and she grew more
and more miserable, until at last she began to weep.

But all at once the door opened, and in came a little man, and said,
"Good evening, Mistress Miller; why are you crying so?" "Alas!" answered
the girl, "I have to spin straw into gold, and I do not know how to
do it." "What will you give me," said the manikin, "if I do it for
you?" "My necklace," said the girl. The little man took the necklace,
seated himself in front of the wheel, and "whirr, whirr, whirr," three
turns, and the reel was full; then he put another on, and whirr, whirr,
whirr, three times round, and the second was full too. And so it went
on until the morning, when all the straw was spun, and all the reels
were full of gold.  By daybreak the King was already there, and when he
saw the gold he was astonished and delighted, but his heart became only
more greedy. He had the miller's daughter taken into another room full
of straw, which was much larger, and commanded her to spin that also in
one night if she valued her life. The girl knew not how to help herself,
and was crying, when the door again opened, and the little man appeared,
and said, "What will you give me if I spin that straw into gold for
you?" "The ring on my finger," answered the girl. The little man took
the ring, again began to turn the wheel, and by morning had spun all
the straw into glittering gold.

The King rejoiced beyond measure at the sight, but still he had not
gold enough; and he had the miller's daughter taken into a still larger
room full of straw, and said, "You must spin this, too, in the course
of this night; but if you succeed, you shall be my wife." "Even if she
be a miller's daughter," thought he, "I could not find a richer wife in
the whole world."

When the girl was alone the manikin came again for the third time,
and said, "What will you give me if I spin the straw for you this time
also?" "I have nothing left that I could give," answered the girl. "Then
promise me, if you should become Queen, your first child." "Who knows
whether that will ever happen?" thought the miller's daughter; and, not
knowing how else to help herself in this strait, she promised the manikin
what he wanted, and for that he once more span the straw into gold.

And when the King came in the morning, and found all as he had wished,
he took her in marriage, and the pretty miller's daughter became a Queen.

A year after, she had a beautiful child, and she never gave a thought to
the manikin. But suddenly he came into her room, and said, "Now give me
what you promised." The Queen was horror-struck, and offered the manikin
all the riches of the kingdom if he would leave her the child. But the
manikin said, "No, something that is living is dearer to me than all the
treasures in the world." Then the Queen began to weep and cry, so that
the manikin pitied her. "I will give you three days' time," said he,
"if by that time you find out my name, then shall you keep your child."

So the Queen thought the whole night of all the names that she had ever
heard, and she sent a messenger over the country to inquire, far and
wide, for any other names that there might be. When the manikin came the
next day, she began with Caspar, Melchior, Balthazar, and said all the
names she knew, one after another; but to every one the little man said,
"That is not my name." On the second day she had inquiries made in the
neighborhood as to the names of the people there, and she repeated to the
manikin the most uncommon and curious. "Perhaps your name is Shortribs, or
Sheepshanks, or Laceleg?" but he always answered, "That is not my name."

On the third day the messenger came back again, and said, "I have not been
able to find a single new name, but as I came to a high mountain at the
end of the forest, where the fox and the hare bid each other good night,
there I saw a little house, and before the house a fire was burning,
and round about the fire quite a ridiculous little man was jumping:
he hopped upon one leg, and shouted---


 "To-day I bake, to-morrow brew,
 The next I'll have the young Queen's child.
 Ha! glad am I that no one knew
 That Rumpelstiltskin I am styled."

You may think how glad the Queen was when she heard the name! And when
soon afterwards the little man came in, and asked, "Now, Mistress Queen,
what is my name?" at first she said, "Is your name Conrad?" "No." "Is
your name Harry?" "No."

"Perhaps your name is Rumpelstiltskin?"

"The devil has told you that! the devil has told you that!" cried the
little man, and in his anger he plunged his right foot so deep into the
earth that his whole leg went in; and then in rage he pulled at his left
leg so hard with both hands that he tore himself in two.



56 Sweetheart Roland

There was once on a time a woman who was a real witch and had two
daughters, one ugly and wicked, and this one she loved because she was
her own daughter, and one beautiful and good, and this one she hated,
because she was her step-daughter. The step-daughter once had a pretty
apron, which the other fancied so much that she became envious, and told
her mother that she must and would have that apron. "Be quiet, my child,"
said the old woman, "and thou shalt have it. Thy step-sister has long
deserved death, to-night when she is asleep I will come and cut her head
off. Only be careful that thou art at the far-side of the bed, and push
her well to the front." It would have been all over with the poor girl if
she had not just then been standing in a corner, and heard everything. All
day long she dared not go out of doors, and when bed-time had come,
the witch's daughter got into bed first, so as to lie at the far side,
but when she was asleep, the other pushed her gently to the front, and
took for herself the place at the back, close by the wall. In the night,
the old woman came creeping in, she held an axe in her right hand, and
felt with her left to see if anyone was lying at the outside, and then
she grasped the axe with both hands, and cut her own child's head off.

When she had gone away, the girl got up and went to her sweetheart, who
was called Roland, and knocked at his door. When he came out, she said to
him, "Hear me, dearest Roland, we must fly in all haste; my step-mother
wanted to kill me, but has struck her own child. When daylight comes,
and she sees what she has done, we shall be lost." "But," said Roland,
"I counsel thee first to take away her magic wand, or we cannot escape
if she pursues us." The maiden fetched the magic wand, and she took the
dead girl's head and dropped three drops of blood on the ground, one in
front of the bed, one in the kitchen, and one on the stairs. Then she
hurried away with her lover. When the old witch got up next morning,
she called her daughter, and wanted to give her the apron, but she did
not come. Then the witch cried, "Where art thou?" "Here, on the stairs,
I am sweeping," answered the first drop of blood. The old woman went out,
but saw no one on the stairs, and cried again, "Where art thou?" "Here in
the kitchen, I am warming myself," cried the second drop of blood. She
went into the kitchen, but found no one. Then she cried again, "Where
art thou?" "Ah, here in the bed, I am sleeping." cried the third drop of
blood. She went into the room to the bed. What did she see there? Her
own child, whose head she had cut off, bathed in her blood. The witch
fell into a passion, sprang to the window, and as she could look forth
quite far into the world, she perceived her step-daughter hurrying
away with her sweetheart Roland. "That shall not serve you," cried
she, "even if you have got a long way off, you shall still not escape
me." She put on her many league boots, in which went an hour's walk
at every step, and it was not long before she overtook them. The girl,
however, when she saw the old woman striding towards her, changed, with
her magic wand, her sweetheart Roland into a lake, and herself into
a duck swimming in the middle of it. The witch placed herself on the
shore, threw bread-crumbs in, and gave herself every possible trouble
to entice the duck; but the duck did not let herself be enticed, and
the old woman had to go home at night as she had come. On this the girl
and her sweetheart Roland resumed their natural shapes again, and they
walked on the whole night until daybreak. Then the maiden changed herself
into a beautiful flower which stood in the midst of a briar hedge, and
her sweetheart Roland into a fiddler. It was not long before the witch
came striding up towards them, and said to the musician, "Dear musician,
may I pluck that beautiful flower for myself?" "Oh, yes," he replied,
"I will play to you while you do it." As she was hastily creeping into
the hedge and was just going to pluck the flower, for she well knew
who the flower was, he began to play, and whether she would or not, she
was forced to dance, for it was a magical dance. The quicker he played,
the more violent springs was she forced to make, and the thorns tore her
clothes from her body, and pricked her and wounded her till she bled,
and as he did not stop, she had to dance till she lay dead on the ground.

When they were delivered, Roland said, "Now I will go to my father
and arrange for the wedding." "Then in the meantime I will stay here
and wait for thee," said the girl, "and that no one may recognize me,
I will change myself into a red stone land-mark." Then Roland went away,
and the girl stood like a red land-mark in the field and waited for her
beloved. But when Roland got home, he fell into the snares of another,
who prevailed on him so far that he forgot the maiden. The poor girl
remained there a long time, but at length, as he did not return at all,
she was sad, and changed herself into a flower, and thought, "Some one
will surely come this way, and trample me down."

It befell, however, that a shepherd kept his sheep in the field, and
saw the flower, and as it was so pretty, plucked it, took it with him,
and laid it away in his chest. From that time forth, strange things
happened in the shepherd's house.  When he arose in the morning, all
the work was already done, the room was swept, the table and benches
cleaned, the fire on the hearth was lighted, and the water was fetched,
and at noon, when he came home, the table was laid, and a good dinner
served. He could not conceive how this came to pass, for he never saw
a human being in his house, and no one could have concealed himself
in it.  He was certainly pleased with this good attendance, but still
at last he was so afraid that he went to a wise woman and asked for
her advice. The wise woman said, "There is some enchantment behind it,
listen very early some morning if anything is moving in the room, and if
thou seest anything, let it be what it may, throw a white cloth over it,
and then the magic will be stopped."

The shepherd did as she bade him, and next morning just as day dawned,
he saw the chest open, and the flower come out. Swiftly he sprang towards
it, and threw a white cloth over it. Instantly the transformation came to
an end, and a beautiful girl stood before him, who owned to him that she
had been the flower, and that up to this time she had attended to his
housekeeping. She told him her story, and as she pleased him he asked
her if she would marry him, but she answered, "No," for she wanted to
remain faithful to her sweetheart Roland, although he had deserted her,
but she promised not to go away, but to keep house for the shepherd for
the future.

And now the time drew near when Roland's wedding was to be celebrated,
and then, according to an old custom in the country, it was announced
that all the girls were to be present at it, and sing in honour of the
bridal pair. When the faithful maiden heard of this, she grew so sad
that she thought her heart would break, and she would not go thither,
but the other girls came and took her.  When it came to her turn to
sing, she stepped back, until at last she was the only one left, and
then she could not refuse. But when she began her song, and it reached
Roland's ears, he sprang up and cried, "I know the voice, that is the
true bride, I will have no other!" Everything he had forgotten, and
which had vanished from his mind, had suddenly come home again to his
heart. Then the faithful maiden held her wedding with her sweetheart
Roland, and grief came to an end and joy began.



57 The Golden Bird

In the olden time there was a king, who had behind his palace a beautiful
pleasure-garden in which there was a tree that bore golden apples. When
the apples were getting ripe they were counted, but on the very next
morning one was missing. This was told to the King, and he ordered that
a watch should be kept every night beneath the tree.

The King had three sons, the eldest of whom he sent, as soon as night
came on, into the garden; but when midnight came he could not keep
himself from sleeping, and next morning again an apple was gone.

The following night the second son had to keep watch, it fared no better
with him; as soon as twelve o'clock had struck he fell asleep, and in
the morning an apple was gone.

Now it came to the turn of the third son to watch; and he was quite ready,
but the King had not much trust in him, and thought that he would be of
less use even than his brothers; but at last he let him go. The youth
lay down beneath the tree, but kept awake, and did not let sleep master
him. When it struck twelve, something rustled through the air, and in
the moonlight he saw a bird coming whose feathers were all shining with
gold. The bird alighted on the tree, and had just plucked off an apple,
when the youth shot an arrow at him. The bird flew off, but the arrow
had struck his plumage, and one of his golden feathers fell down. The
youth picked it up, and the next morning took it to the King and told
him what he had seen in the night. The King called his council together,
and everyone declared that a feather like this was worth more than
the whole kingdom. "If the feather is so precious," declared the King,
"one alone will not do for me; I must and will have the whole bird!"

The eldest son set out; he trusted to his cleverness, and thought that
he would easily find the Golden Bird. When he had gone some distance he
saw a Fox sitting at the edge of a wood, so he cocked his gun and took
aim at him. The Fox cried, "Do not shoot me! and in return I will give
you some good counsel.  You are on the way to the Golden Bird; and this
evening you will come to a village in which stand two inns opposite to
one another. One of them is lighted up brightly, and all goes on merrily
within, but do not go into it; go rather into the other, even though it
seems a bad one." "How can such a silly beast give wise advice?" thought
the King's son, and he pulled the trigger. But he missed the Fox, who
stretched out his tail and ran quickly into the wood.

So he pursued his way, and by evening came to the village where the two
inns were; in one they were singing and dancing; the other had a poor,
miserable look. "I should be a fool, indeed," he thought, "if I were to
go into the shabby tavern, and pass by the good one." So he went into
the cheerful one, lived there in riot and revel, and forgot the bird
and his father, and all good counsels.

When some time had passed, and the eldest son for month after month
did not come back home, the second set out, wishing to find the Golden
Bird. The Fox met him as he had met the eldest, and gave him the good
advice of which he took no heed. He came to the two inns, and his brother
was standing at the window of the one from which came the music, and
called out to him. He could not resist, but went inside and lived only
for pleasure.

Again some time passed, and then the King's youngest son wanted to set off
and try his luck, but his father would not allow it. "It is of no use,"
said he, "he will find the Golden Bird still less than his brothers,
and if a mishap were to befall him he knows not how to help himself;
he is a little wanting at the best." But at last, as he had no peace,
he let him go.

Again the Fox was sitting outside the wood, and begged for his life,
and offered his good advice. The youth was good-natured, and said,
"Be easy, little Fox, I will do you no harm." "You shall not repent it,"
answered the Fox; "and that you may get on more quickly, get up behind
on my tail." And scarcely had he seated himself when the Fox began to
run, and away he went over stock and stone till his hair whistled in
the wind. When they came to the village the youth got off; he followed
the good advice, and without looking round turned into the little inn,
where he spent the night quietly.

The next morning, as soon as he got into the open country, there sat the
Fox already, and said, "I will tell you further what you have to do. Go
on quite straight, and at last you will come to a castle, in front of
which a whole regiment of soldiers is lying, but do not trouble yourself
about them, for they will all be asleep and snoring. Go through the
midst of them straight into the castle, and go through all the rooms,
till at last you will come to a chamber where a Golden Bird is hanging
in a wooden cage. Close by, there stands an empty gold cage for show,
but beware of taking the bird out of the common cage and putting it into
the fine one, or it may go badly with you." With these words the Fox
again stretched out his tail, and the King's son seated himself upon it,
and away he went over stock and stone till his hair whistled in the wind.

When he came to the castle he found everything as the Fox had said. The
King's son went into the chamber where the Golden Bird was shut up in
a wooden cage, whilst a golden one stood hard by; and the three golden
apples lay about the room. "But," thought he, "it would be absurd if
I were to leave the beautiful bird in the common and ugly cage," so he
opened the door, laid hold of it, and put it into the golden cage. But at
the same moment the bird uttered a shrill cry.  The soldiers awoke, rushed
in, and took him off to prison. The next morning he was taken before a
court of justice, and as he confessed everything, was sentenced to death.

The King, however, said that he would grant him his life on one condition
namely, if he brought him the Golden Horse which ran faster than the
wind; and in that case he should receive, over and above, as a reward,
the Golden Bird.

The King's son set off, but he sighed and was sorrowful, for how was
he to find the Golden Horse? But all at once he saw his old friend the
Fox sitting on the road. "Look you," said the Fox, "this has happened
because you did not give heed to me. However, be of good courage. I
will give you my help, and tell you how to get to the Golden Horse. You
must go straight on, and you will come to a castle, where in the stable
stands the horse. The grooms will be lying in front of the stable;
but they will be asleep and snoring, and you can quietly lead out the
Golden Horse. But of one thing you must take heed; put on him the common
saddle of wood and leather, and not the golden one, which hangs close
by, else it will go ill with you." Then the Fox stretched out his tail,
the King's son seated himself upon it, and away he went over stock and
stone until his hair whistled in the wind.

Everything happened just as the Fox had said; the prince came to the
stable in which the Golden Horse was standing, but just as he was going to
put the common saddle upon him, he thought, "It will be a shame to such
a beautiful beast, if I do not give him the good saddle which belongs to
him by right." But scarcely had the golden saddle touched the horse than
he began to neigh loudly.  The grooms awoke, seized the youth, and threw
him into prison. The next morning he was sentenced by the court to death;
but the King promised to grant him his life, and the Golden Horse as well,
if he could bring back the beautiful princess from the Golden Castle.

With a heavy heart the youth set out; yet luckily for him he soon
found the trusty Fox. "I ought only to leave you to your ill-luck,"
said the Fox, "but I pity you, and will help you once more out of your
trouble. This road takes you straight to the Golden Castle, you will
reach it by eventide; and at night when everything is quiet the beautiful
princess goes to the bathing-house to bathe. When she enters it, run up
to her and give her a kiss, then she will follow you, and you can take
her away with you; only do not allow her to take leave of her parents
first, or it will go ill with you."

Then the Fox stretched out his tail, the King's son seated himself upon
it, and away the Fox went, over stock and stone, till his hair whistled
in the wind.

When he reached the Golden Castle it was just as the Fox had said. He
waited until midnight, when everything lay in deep sleep, and the
beautiful princess was going to the bathing-house. Then he sprang out
and gave her a kiss. She said that she would like to go with him, but she
asked him pitifully, and with tears, to allow her first to take leave of
her parents. At first he withstood her prayer, but when she wept more
and more, and fell at his feet, he at last gave in. But no sooner had
the maiden reached the bedside of her father than he and all the rest
in the castle awoke, and the youth was laid hold of and put into prison.

The next morning the King said to him, "Your life is forfeited, and you
can only find mercy if you take away the hill which stands in front
of my windows, and prevents my seeing beyond it; and you must finish
it all within eight days. If you do that you shall have my daughter as
your reward."

The King's son began, and dug and shovelled without leaving off, but
when after seven days he saw how little he had done, and how all his
work was as good as nothing, he fell into great sorrow and gave up all
hope. But on the evening of the seventh day the Fox appeared and said,
"You do not deserve that I should take any trouble about you; but just
go away and lie down to sleep, and I will do the work for you."

The next morning when he awoke and looked out of the window the hill had
gone. The youth ran, full of joy, to the King, and told him that the task
was fulfilled, and whether he liked it or not, the King had to hold to
his word and give him his daughter.

So the two set forth together, and it was not long before the trusty Fox
came up with them. "You have certainly got what is best," said he, "but
the Golden Horse also belongs to the maiden of the Golden Castle." "How
shall I get it?" asked the youth. "That I will tell you," answered the
Fox; "first take the beautiful maiden to the King who sent you to the
Golden Castle. There will be unheard-of rejoicing; they will gladly give
you the Golden Horse, and will bring it out to you. Mount it as soon
as possible, and offer your hand to all in farewell; last of all to the
beautiful maiden. And as soon as you have taken her hand swing her up on
to the horse, and gallop away, and no one will be able to bring you back,
for the horse runs faster than the wind."

All was carried out successfully, and the King's son carried off the
beautiful princess on the Golden Horse.

The Fox did not remain behind, and he said to the youth, "Now I will
help you to get the Golden Bird. When you come near to the castle where
the Golden Bird is to be found, let the maiden get down, and I will take
her into my care. Then ride with the Golden Horse into the castle-yard;
there will be great rejoicing at the sight, and they will bring out the
Golden Bird for you. As soon as you have the cage in your hand gallop
back to us, and take the maiden away again."

When the plan had succeeded, and the King's son was about to ride
home with his treasures, the Fox said, "Now you shall reward me for my
help." "What do you require for it?" asked the youth. "When you get into
the wood yonder, shoot me dead, and chop off my head and feet."

"That would be fine gratitude," said the King's son. "I cannot possibly
do that for you."

The Fox said, "If you will not do it I must leave you, but before
I go away I will give you a piece of good advice. Be careful about
two things. Buy no gallows'-flesh, and do not sit at the edge of any
well." And then he ran into the wood.

The youth thought, "That is a wonderful beast, he has strange whims;
who is going to buy gallows'-flesh? and the desire to sit at the edge
of a well it has never yet seized me."

He rode on with the beautiful maiden, and his road took him again through
the village in which his two brothers had remained. There was a great
stir and noise, and, when he asked what was going on, he was told that
two men were going to be hanged. As he came nearer to the place he saw
that they were his brothers, who had been playing all kinds of wicked
pranks, and had squandered all their wealth. He inquired whether they
could not be set free. "If you will pay for them," answered the people;
"but why should you waste your money on wicked men, and buy them free." He
did not think twice about it, but paid for them, and when they were set
free they all went on their way together.

They came to the wood where the Fox had first met them, as it was cool
and pleasant within it, the two brothers said, "Let us rest a little by
the well, and eat and drink." He agreed, and whilst they were talking he
forgot himself, and sat down upon the edge of the well without thinking
of any evil. But the two brothers threw him backwards into the well, took
the maiden, the Horse, and the Bird, and went home to their father. "Here
we bring you not only the Golden Bird," said they; "we have won the
Golden Horse also, and the maiden from the Golden Castle." Then was
there great joy; but the Horse would not eat, the Bird would not sing,
and the maiden sat and wept.

But the youngest brother was not dead. By good fortune the well was
dry, and he fell upon soft moss without being hurt, but he could not
get out again. Even in this strait the faithful Fox did not leave him:
it came and leapt down to him, and upbraided him for having forgotten
its advice. "But yet I cannot give it up so," he said; "I will help you
up again into daylight." He bade him grasp his tail and keep tight hold
of it; and then he pulled him up.

"You are not out of all danger yet," said the Fox. "Your brothers were
not sure of your death, and have surrounded the wood with watchers,
who are to kill you if you let yourself be seen." But a poor man was
sitting upon the road, with whom the youth changed clothes, and in this
way he got to the King's palace.

No one knew him, but the Bird began to sing, the Horse began to eat,
and the beautiful maiden left off weeping. The King, astonished, asked,
"What does this mean?" Then the maiden said, "I do not know, but I have
been so sorrowful and now I am so happy! I feel as if my true bridegroom
had come." She told him all that had happened, although the other brothers
had threatened her with death if she were to betray anything.

The King commanded that all people who were in his castle should be
brought before him; and amongst them came the youth in his ragged
clothes; but the maiden knew him at once and fell upon his neck. The
wicked brothers were seized and put to death, but he was married to the
beautiful maiden and declared heir to the King.

But how did it fare with the poor Fox? Long afterwards the King's son
was once again walking in the wood, when the Fox met him and said, "You
have everything now that you can wish for, but there is never an end to
my misery, and yet it is in your power to free me," and again he asked
him with tears to shoot him dead and chop off his head and feet. So he
did it, and scarcely was it done when the Fox was changed into a man,
and was no other than the brother of the beautiful princess, who at
last was freed from the magic charm which had been laid upon him. And
now nothing more was wanting to their happiness as long as they lived.



58 The Dog and the Sparrow

A sheep-dog had not a good master, but, on the contrary, one who let
him suffer hunger. As he could stay no longer with him, he went quite
sadly away. On the road he met a sparrow who said, "Brother dog, why
art thou so sad?" The dog replied, "I am hungry, and have nothing to
eat." Then said the sparrow, "Dear brother, come into the town with me,
and I will satisfy thy hunger." So they went into the town together,
and when they came in front of a butcher's shop the sparrow said to
the dog, "Stay there, and I will pick a bit of meat down for thee,"
and he alighted on the stall, looked about him to see that no one
was observing him, and pecked and pulled and tore so long at a piece
which lay on the edge, that it slipped down. Then the dog seized it,
ran into a corner, and devoured it. The sparrow said, "Now come with
me to another shop, and then I will get thee one more piece that thou
mayst be satisfied." When the dog had devoured the second piece as well,
the sparrow asked, "Brother dog, hast thou now had enough?" "Yes, I have
had meat enough," he answered, "but I have had no bread yet." Said the
sparrow, "Thou shalt have that also, come with me."  Then he took him to
a baker's shop, and pecked at a couple of little buns till they rolled
down, and as the dog wanted still more, he led him to another stall,
and again got bread for him. When that was consumed, the sparrow said,
"Brother dog, hast thou now had enough?" "Yes," he replied, "now we
will walk awhile outside the town." Then they both went out on to
the highway. It was, however, warm weather, and when they had walked a
little way the dog said, "I am tired, and would like to sleep." "Well, do
sleep," answered the sparrow, "and in the meantime I will seat myself on
a branch." So the dog lay down on the road, and fell fast asleep. Whilst
he lay sleeping there, a waggoner came driving by, who had a cart with
three horses, laden with two barrels of wine. The sparrow, however,
saw that he was not going to turn aside, but was staying in the wheel
track in which the dog was lying, so it cried, "Waggoner, don't do it,
or I will make thee poor." The waggoner, however, growled to himself,
"Thou wilt not make me poor," and cracked his whip and drove the cart
over the dog, and the wheels killed him. Then the sparrow cried, "Thou
hast run over my brother dog and killed him, it shall cost thee thy cart
and horses." "Cart and horses indeed!"  said the waggoner. "What harm
canst thou do me?" and drove onwards. Then the sparrow crept under the
cover of the cart, and pecked so long at the same bung-hole that he got
the bung out, and then all the wine ran out without the driver noticing
it. But once when he was looking behind him he saw that the cart was
dripping, and looked at the barrels and saw that one of them was empty.
"Unfortunate fellow that I am," cried he. "Not unfortunate enough yet,"
said the sparrow, and flew on to the head of one of the horses and pecked
his eyes out.  When the driver saw that, he drew out his axe and wanted to
hit the sparrow, but the sparrow flew into the air, and he hit his horse
on the head, and it fell down dead. "Oh, what an unfortunate man I am,"
cried he. "Not unfortunate enough yet," said the sparrow, and when the
driver drove on with the two hoses, the sparrow again crept under the
cover, and pecked the bung out of the second cask, so all the wine was
spilt. When the driver became aware of it, he again cried, "Oh, what an
unfortunate man I am," but the sparrow replied, "Not unfortunate enough
yet," and seated himself on the head of the second horse, and pecked
his eyes out. The driver ran up to it and raised his axe to strike,
but the sparrow flew into the air and the blow struck the horse, which
fell. "Oh, what an unfortunate man I am." "Not unfortunate enough yet,"
said the sparrow, and lighted on the third horse's head, and pecked out
his eyes. The driver, in his rage, struck at the sparrow without looking
round, and did not hit him but killed his third horse likewise. "Oh,
what an unfortunate man I am," cried he. "Not unfortunate enough yet,"
answered the sparrow. "Now will I make thee unfortunate in thy home,"
and flew away.

The driver had to leave the waggon standing, and full of anger and
vexation went home. "Ah," said he to his wife, "what misfortunes I have
had! My wine has run out, and the horses are all three dead!" "Alas,
husband," she answered, "what a malicious bird has come into the
house! It has gathered together every bird there is in the world, and
they have fallen on our corn up there, and are devouring it."  Then he
went upstairs, and thousands and thousands of birds were sitting in the
loft and had eaten up all the corn, and the sparrow was sitting in the
midst of them. Then the driver cried, "Oh, what an unfortunate man I am?"

"Not unfortunate enough yet!" answered the sparrow; "waggoner, it shall
cost thee thy life as well," and flew out.

Then the waggoner had lost all his property, and he went downstairs
into the room, sat down behind the stove and was quite furious and
bitter. But the sparrow sat outside in front of the window, and cried,
"Waggoner, it shall cost thee thy life." Then the waggoner snatched the
axe and threw it at the sparrow, but it only broke the window, and did
not hit the bird. The sparrow now hopped in, placed itself on the stove
and cried, "Waggoner, it shall cost thee thy life." The latter, quite mad
and blind with rage, smote the stove in twain, and as the sparrow flew
from one place to another so it fared with all his household furniture,
looking-glass, benches, table, and at last the walls of his house,
and yet he could not hit the bird. At length, however, he caught it
with his hand. Then his wife said, "Shall I kill it?" "No," cried he,
"that would be too merciful. It shall die much more cruelly," and he
took it and swallowed it whole. The sparrow, however, began to flutter
about in his body, and fluttered up again into the man's mouth; then it
stretched out its head, and cried, "Waggoner, it shall still cost thee
thy life." The driver gave the axe to his wife, and said, "Wife, kill
the bird in my mouth for me." The woman struck, but missed her blow,
and hit the waggoner right on his head, so that he fell dead. But the
sparrow flew up and away.



59 Frederick and Catherine

There was once on a time a man who was called Frederick and a woman called
Catherine, who had married each other and lived together as young married
folks. One day Frederick said, "I will now go and plough, Catherine;
when I come back, there must be some roast meat on the table for hunger,
and a fresh draught for thirst." "Just go, Frederick," answered Kate,
"just go, I will have all ready for you." Therefore when dinner-time
drew near she got a sausage out of the chimney, put it in the frying-pan,
put some butter to it, and set it on the fire.  The sausage began to fry
and to hiss, Catherine stood beside it and held the handle of the pan,
and had her own thoughts as she was doing it. Then it occurred to her,
"While the sausage is getting done thou couldst go into the cellar and
draw beer." So she set the frying-pan safely on the fire, took a can,
and went down into the cellar to draw beer. The beer ran into the can
and Kate watched it, and then she thought, "Oh, dear! The dog upstairs
is not fastened up, it might get the sausage out of the pan. Well thought
of." And in a trice she was up the cellar-steps again, but the Spitz had
the sausage in its mouth already, and trailed it away on the ground. But
Catherine, who was not idle, set out after it, and chased it a long way
into the field; the dog, however, was swifter than Catherine and did
not let the sausage journey easily, but skipped over the furrows with
it. "What's gone is gone!" said Kate, and turned round, and as she had
run till she was weary, she walked quietly and comfortably, and cooled
herself. During this time the beer was still running out of the cask,
for Kate had not turned the tap. And when the can was full and there
was no other place for it, it ran into the cellar and did not stop
until the whole cask was empty. As soon as Kate was on the steps she
saw the mischance. "Good gracious!" she cried.  "What shall I do now
to stop Frederick knowing it!" She thought for a while, and at last she
remembered that up in the garret was still standing a sack of the finest
wheat flour from the last fair, and she would fetch that down and strew
it over the beer. "Yes," said she, "he who saves a thing when he ought,
has it afterwards when he needs it," and she climbed up to the garret
and carried the sack below, and threw it straight down on the can of
beer, which she knocked over, and Frederick's draught swam also in
the cellar. "It is all right," said Kate, "where the one is the other
ought to be also," and she strewed the meal over the whole cellar. When
it was done she was heartily delighted with her work, and said, "How
clean and wholesome it does look here!" At mid-day home came Frederick:
"Now, wife, what have you ready for me?" "Ah, Freddy," she answered,
"I was frying a sausage for you, but whilst I was drawing the beer to
drink with it, the dog took it away out of the pan, and whilst I was
running after the dog, all the beer ran out, and whilst I was drying up
the beer with the flour, I knocked over the can as well, but be easy,
the cellar is quite dry again." Said Frederick, "Kate, Kate, you should
not have done that! to let the sausage be carried off and the beer run
out of the cask, and throw out all our flour into the bargain!" "Indeed,
Frederick, I did not know that, you should have told me." The man thought,
"If my wife is like this, I must look after things more." Now he had
got together a good number of thalers which he changed into gold,
and said to Catherine, "Look, these are counters for playing games;
I will put them in a pot and bury them in the stable under the cow's
manger, but mind you keep away from them, or it will be the worse for
you." Said she, "Oh, no, Frederick, I certainly will not go." And when
Frederick was gone some pedlars came into the village who had cheap
earthen-bowls and pots, and asked the young woman if there was nothing
she wanted to bargain with them for? "Oh, dear people," said Catherine,
"I have no money and can buy nothing, but if you have any use for yellow
counters I will buy of you." "Yellow counters, why not? But just let
us see them." "Then go into the stable and dig under the cow's manger,
and you will find the yellow counters. I am not allowed to go there." The
rogues went thither, dug and found pure gold. Then they laid hold of it,
ran away, and left their pots and bowls behind in the house. Catherine
though she must use her new things, and as she had no lack in the
kitchen already without these, she knocked the bottom out of every pot,
and set them all as ornaments on the paling which went round about
the house. When Frederick came and saw the new decorations, he said,
"Catherine, what have you been about?" "I have bought them, Frederick,
for the counters which were under the cow's manger. I did not go there
myself, the pedlars had to dig them out for themselves." "Ah, wife," said
Frederick, "what have you done? Those were not counters, but pure gold,
and all our wealth; you should not have done that." "Indeed, Frederick,"
said she, "I did not know that, you should have forewarned me."

Catherine stood for a while and bethought to herself; then she said,
"Listen, Frederick, we will soon get the gold back again, we will run
after the thieves."  "Come, then," said Frederick, "we will try it;
but take with you some butter and cheese that we may have something to
eat on the way." "Yes, Frederick, I will take them." They set out, and
as Frederick was the better walker, Catherine followed him. "It is to
my advantage," thought she, "when we turn back I shall be a little way
in advance." Then she came to a hill where there were deep ruts on both
sides of the road. "There one can see," said Catherine, "how they have
torn and skinned and galled the poor earth, it will never be whole again
as long as it lives," and in her heart's compassion she took her butter
and smeared the ruts right and left, that they might not be so hurt by
the wheels, and as she was thus bending down in her charity, one of the
cheeses rolled out of her pocket down the hill. Said Catherine, "I have
made my way once up here, I will not go down again; another may run and
fetch it back." So she took another cheese and rolled it down. But the
cheeses did not come back, so she let a third run down, thinking. "Perhaps
they are waiting for company, and do not like to walk alone."  As all
three stayed away she said, "I do not know what that can mean, but it
may perhaps be that the third has not found the way, and has gone wrong,
I will just send the fourth to call it." But the fourth did no better than
the third. Then Catherine was angry, and threw down the fifth and sixth
as well, and these were her last. She remained standing for some time
watching for their coming, but when they still did not come, she said,
"Oh, you are good folks to send in search of death, you stay a fine long
time away! Do you think I will wait any longer for you? I shall go my way,
you may run after me; you have younger legs than I."  Catherine went on
and found Frederick, who was standing waiting for her because he wanted
something to eat. "Now just let us have what you have brought with you,"
said he. She gave him the dry bread. "Where have you the butter and
the cheeses?" asked the man. "Ah, Freddy," said Catherine, "I smeared
the cart-ruts with the butter and the cheeses will come soon; one ran
away from me, so I sent the others after to call it." Said Frederick,
"You should not have done that, Catherine, to smear the butter on the
road, and let the cheeses run down the hill!" "Really, Frederick, you
should have told me." Then they ate the dry bread together, and Frederick
said, "Catherine, did you make the house safe when you came away?" "No,
Frederick, you should have told me to do it before." "Then go home again,
and make the house safe before we go any farther, and bring with you
something else to eat. I will wait here for you."  Catherine went back and
thought, "Frederick wants something more to eat, he does not like butter
and cheese, so I will take with me a handkerchief full of dried pears and
a pitcher of vinegar for him to drink." Then she bolted the upper half
of the door fast, but unhinged the lower door, and took it on her back,
believing that when she had placed the door in security the house must
be well taken care of. Catherine took her time on the way, and thought,
"Frederick will rest himself so much the longer." When she had once
reached him she said, "Here is the house-door for you, Frederick, and
now you can take care of the house yourself." "Oh, heavens," said he,
"what a wise wife I have! She takes the under-door off the hinges that
everything may run in, and bolts the upper one. It is now too late to
go back home again, but since you have brought the door here, you shall
just carry it farther." "I will carry the door, Frederick, but the dried
pears and the vinegar-jug will be too heavy for me, I will hang them on
the door, it may carry them."

And now they went into the forest, and sought the rogues, but did not find
them.  At length as it grew dark they climbed into a tree and resolved to
spend the night there. Scarcely, however, had they sat down at the top of
it than the rascals came thither who carry away with them what does not
want to go, and find things before they are lost. They sat down under the
very tree in which Frederick and Catherine were sitting, lighted a fire,
and were about to share their booty.  Frederick got down on the other
side and collected some stones together. Then he climbed up again with
them, and wished to throw them at the thieves and kill them. The stones,
however, did not hit them, and the knaves cried, "It will soon be morning,
the wind is shaking down the fir-apples." Catherine still had the door on
her back, and as it pressed so heavily on her, she thought it was the
fault of the dried pears, and said, "Frederick, I must throw the pears
down." "No, Catherine, not now," he replied, "they might betray us." "Oh,
but, Frederick, I must! They weigh me down far too much." "Do it, then,
and be hanged!" Then the dried pears rolled down between the branches,
and the rascals below said, "The leaves are falling."

A short time afterwards, as the door was still heavy, Catherine said,
"Ah, Frederick, I must pour out the vinegar." "No, Catherine, you must
not, it might betray us." "Ah, but, Frederick, I must, it weighs me
down far too much." "Then do it and be hanged!" So she emptied out the
vinegar, and it besprinkled the robbers. They said amongst themselves,
"The dew is already falling." At length Catherine thought, "Can it really
be the door which weighs me down so?" and said, "Frederick, I must throw
the door down." "No, not now, Catherine, it might discover us." "Oh, but,
Frederick, I must. It weighs me down far too much."  "Oh, no, Catherine,
do hold it fast." "Ah, Frederick, I am letting it fall!" "Let it go,
then, in the devil's name." Then it fell down with a violent clatter,
and the rascals below cried, "The devil is coming down the tree!" and
they ran away and left everything behind them. Early next morning, when
the two came down they found all their gold again, and carried it home.

When they were once more at home, Frederick said, "And now, Catherine,
you, too, must be industrious and work." "Yes, Frederick, I will soon do
that, I will go into the field and cut corn." When Catherine got into the
field, she said to herself, "Shall I eat before I cut, or shall I sleep
before I cut? Oh, I will eat first."  Then Catherine ate and eating made
her sleepy, and she began to cut, and half in a dream cut all her clothes
to pieces, her apron, her gown, and her shift. When Catherine awoke again
after a long sleep she was standing there half-naked, and said to herself,
"Is it I, or is it not I? Alas, it is not I." In the meantime night came,
and Catherine ran into the village, knocked at her husband's window,
and cried, "Frederick."

"What is the matter?" "I should very much like to know if Catherine is
in?" "Yes, yes," replied Frederick, "she must be in and asleep."

Said she, "'Tis well, then I am certainly at home already," and ran away.

Outside Catherine found some vagabonds who were going to steal. Then she
went to them and said, "I will help you to steal." The rascals thought
that she knew the situation of the place, and were willing. Catherine
went in front of the houses, and cried, "Good folks, have you anything? We
want to steal." The thieves thought to themselves, "That's a fine way of
doing things," and wished themselves once more rid of Catherine. Then
they said to her, "Outside the village the pastor has some turnips in
the field. Go there and pull up some turnips for us." Catherine went to
the ground, and began to pull them up, but was so idle that she did not
gather them together. Then a man came by, saw her, and stood still and
thought that it was the devil who was thus rooting amongst the turnips.
He ran away into the village to the pastor, and said, "Mr. Pastor,
the devil is in your turnip-ground, rooting up turnips." "Ah, heavens,"
answered the pastor, "I have a lame foot, I cannot go out and drive him
away." Said the man, "Then I will carry you on my back," and he carried
him out on his back. And when they came to the ground, Catherine arose
and stood up her full height. "Ah, the devil!"  cried the pastor, and
both hurried away, and in his great fright the pastor could run better
with his lame foot than the man who had carried him on his back could
do with his sound one.



60 The Two Brothers

There were once upon a time two brothers, one rich and the other
poor. The rich one was a goldsmith and evil-hearted. The poor one
supported himself by making brooms, and was good and honourable. The
poor one had two children, who were twin brothers and as like each other
as two drops of water. The two boys went backwards and forwards to the
rich house, and often got some of the scraps to eat. It happened once
when the poor man was going into the forest to fetch brush-wood, that
he saw a bird which was quite golden and more beautiful than any he had
ever chanced to meet with. He picked up a small stone, threw it at him,
and was lucky enough to hit him, but one golden feather only fell down,
and the bird flew away. The man took the feather and carried it to his
brother, who looked at it and said, "It is pure gold!" and gave him a
great deal of money for it. Next day the man climbed into a birch-tree,
and was about to cut off a couple of branches when the same bird flew
out, and when the man searched he found a nest, and an egg lay inside
it, which was of gold. He took the egg home with him, and carried it
to his brother, who again said, "It is pure gold," and gave him what
it was worth. At last the goldsmith said, "I should indeed like to have
the bird itself." The poor man went into the forest for the third time,
and again saw the golden bird sitting on the tree, so he took a stone and
brought it down and carried it to his brother, who gave him a great heap
of gold for it. "Now I can get on," thought he, and went contentedly home.

The goldsmith was crafty and cunning, and knew very well what kind of
a bird it was. He called his wife and said, "Roast me the gold bird,
and take care that none of it is lost. I have a fancy to eat it all
myself." The bird, however, was no common one, but of so wondrous a kind
that whosoever ate its heart and liver found every morning a piece of
gold beneath his pillow. The woman made the bird ready, put it on the
spit, and let it roast. Now it happened that while it was at the fire,
and the woman was forced to go out of the kitchen on account of some
other work, the two children of the poor broom-maker ran in, stood by
the spit and turned it round once or twice. And as at that very moment
two little bits of the bird fell down into the dripping-tin, one of the
boys said, "We will eat these two little bits; I am so hungry, and no
one will ever miss them." Then the two ate the pieces, but the woman
came into the kitchen and saw that they were eating something and said,
"What have ye been eating?" "Two little morsels which fell out of the
bird," answered they. "That must have been the heart and the liver,"
said the woman, quite frightened, and in order that her husband might
not miss them and be angry, she quickly killed a young cock, took out
his heart and liver, and put them beside the golden bird. When it was
ready, she carried it to the goldsmith, who consumed it all alone, and
left none of it. Next morning, however, when he felt beneath his pillow,
and expected to bring out the piece of gold, no more gold pieces were
there than there had always been.

The two children did not know what a piece of good-fortune had fallen
to their lot. Next morning when they arose, something fell rattling to
the ground, and when they picked it up there were two gold pieces! They
took them to their father, who was astonished and said, "How can that
have happened?" When next morning they again found two, and so on daily,
he went to his brother and told him the strange story. The goldsmith at
once knew how it had come to pass, and that the children had eaten the
heart and liver of the golden bird, and in order to revenge himself,
and because he was envious and hard-hearted, he said to the father,
"Thy children are in league with the Evil One, do not take the gold, and
do not suffer them to stay any longer in thy house, for he has them in
his power, and may ruin thee likewise." The father feared the Evil One,
and painful as it was to him, he nevertheless led the twins forth into
the forest, and with a sad heart left them there.

And now the two children ran about the forest, and sought the way home
again, but could not find it, and only lost themselves more and more. At
length they met with a huntsman, who asked, "To whom do you children
belong?" "We are the poor broom-maker's boys," they replied, and they
told him that their father would not keep them any longer in the house
because a piece of gold lay every morning under their pillows. "Come,"
said the huntsman, "that is nothing so very bad, if at the same time
you keep honest, and are not idle." As the good man liked the children,
and had none of his own, he took them home with him and said, "I will be
your father, and bring you up till you are big." They learnt huntsmanship
from him, and the piece of gold which each of them found when he awoke,
was kept for them by him in case they should need it in the future.

When they were grown up, their foster-father one day took them into the
forest with him, and said, "To-day shall you make your trial shot, so that
I may release you from your apprenticeship, and make you huntsmen." They
went with him to lie in wait and stayed there a long time, but no game
appeared. The huntsman, however, looked above him and saw a covey of
wild geese flying in the form of a triangle, and said to one of them,
"Shoot me down one from each corner." He did it, and thus accomplished
his trial shot. Soon after another covey came flying by in the form of
the figure two, and the huntsman bade the other also bring down one
from each corner, and his trial shot was likewise successful. "Now,"
said the foster-father, "I pronounce you out of your apprenticeship;
you are skilled huntsmen." Thereupon the two brothers went forth
together into the forest, and took counsel with each other and planned
something. And in the evening when they had sat down to supper, they said
to their foster-father, "We will not touch food, or take one mouthful,
until you have granted us a request."  Said he, "What, then, is your
request?" They replied, "We have now finished learning, and we must
prove ourselves in the world, so allow us to go away and travel." Then
spake the old man joyfully, "You talk like brave huntsmen, that which
you desire has been my wish; go forth, all will go well with you."
Thereupon they ate and drank joyously together.

When the appointed day came, their foster-father presented each of them
with a good gun and a dog, and let each of them take as many of his
saved-up gold pieces as he chose. Then he accompanied them a part of
the way, and when taking leave, he gave them a bright knife, and said,
"If ever you separate, stick this knife into a tree at the place where
you part, and when one of you goes back, he will will be able to see how
his absent brother is faring, for the side of the knife which is turned
in the direction by which he went, will rust if he dies, but will remain
bright as long as he is alive." The two brothers went still farther
onwards, and came to a forest which was so large that it was impossible
for them to get out of it in one day. So they passed the night in it,
and ate what they had put in their hunting-pouches, but they walked all
the second day likewise, and still did not get out. As they had nothing
to eat, one of them said, "We must shoot something for ourselves or we
shall suffer from hunger," and loaded his gun, and looked about him. And
when an old hare came running up towards them, he laid his gun on his
shoulder, but the hare cried,


 "Dear huntsman, do but let me live,
 Two little ones to thee I'll give,"

and sprang instantly into the thicket, and brought two young ones. But the
little creatures played so merrily, and were so pretty, that the huntsmen
could not find it in their hearts to kill them. They therefore kept
them with them, and the little hares followed on foot. Soon after this,
a fox crept past; they were just going to shoot it, but the fox cried,


 "Dear hunstman, do but let me live,
 Two little ones I'll also give."

He, too, brought two little foxes, and the huntsmen did not like to kill
them either, but gave them to the hares for company, and they followed
behind. It was not long before a wolf strode out of the thicket; the
huntsmen made ready to shoot him, but the wolf cried,


 "Dear huntsman, do but let me live,
 Two little ones I'll likewise give."

The huntsmen put the two wolves beside the other animals, and they
followed behind them. Then a bear came who wanted to trot about a little
longer, and cried:


 "Dear huntsman, do but let me live,
 Two little ones I, too, will give."

The two young bears were added to the others, and there were already eight
of them. At length who came? A lion came, and tossed his mane. But the
huntsmen did not let themselves be frightened and aimed at him likewise,
but the lion also said,


 "Dear huntsman, do but let me live,
 Two little ones I, too, will give."

And he brought his little ones to them, and now the huntsmen had two
lions, two bears, two wolves, two foxes, and two hares, who followed them
and served them. In thu meantime their hunger was not appeased by this,
and they said to the foxes, "Hark ye, cunning fellows, provide us with
something to eat. You are crafty and deep." They replied, "Not far from
here lies a village, from which we have already brought many a fowl;
we will show you the way there." So they went into the village, bought
themselves something to eat, had some food given to their beasts, and
then travelled onwards. The foxes, however, knew their way very well
about the district and where the poultry-yards were, and were able to
guide the huntsmen.

Now they travelled about for a while, but could find no situations where
they could remain together, so they said, "There is nothing else for it,
we must part."  They divided the animals, so that each of them had a
lion, a bear, a wolf, a fox, and a hare, then they took leave of each
other, promised to love each other like brothers till their death, and
stuck the knife which their foster-father had given them, into a tree,
after which one went east, and the other went west.

The younger, however, arrived with his beasts in a town which was
all hung with black crape. He went into an inn, and asked the host
if he could accommodate his animals. The innkeeper gave him a stable,
where there was a hole in the wall, and the hare crept out and fetched
himself the head of a cabbage, and the fox fetched himself a hen, and
when he had devoured that got the cock as well, but the wolf, the bear,
and the lion could not get out because they were too big.  Then the
innkeeper let them be taken to a place where a cow was just then lying
on the grass, that they might eat till they were satisfied. And when the
huntsman had taken care of his animals, he asked the innkeeper why the
town was thus hung with black crape? Said the host, "Because our King's
only daughter is to die to-morrow." The huntsman inquired if she was
"sick unto death?" "No," answered the host, "she is vigorous and healthy,
nevertheless she must die!"  "How is that?" asked the huntsman. "There
is a high hill without the town, whereon dwells a dragon who every year
must have a pure virgin, or he lays the whole country waste, and now all
the maidens have already been given to him, and there is no longer anyone
left but the King's daughter, yet there is no mercy for her; she must be
given up to him, and that is to be done to-morrow." Said the huntsman,
"Why is the dragon not killed?" "Ah," replied the host, "so many knights
have tried it, but it has cost all of them their lives. The King has
promised that he who conquers the dragon shall have his daughter to wife,
and shall likewise govern the kingdom after his own death."

The huntsman said nothing more to this, but next morning took his animals,
and with them ascended the dragon's hill. A little church stood at the
top of it, and on the altar three full cups were standing, with the
inscription, "Whosoever empties the cups will become the strongest man
on earth, and will be able to wield the sword which is buried before
the threshold of the door." The huntsman did not drink, but went out
and sought for the sword in the ground, but was unable to move it from
its place. Then he went in and emptied the cups, and now he was strong
enough to take up the sword, and his hand could quite easily wield it.
When the hour came when the maiden was to be delivered over to the dragon,
the King, the marshal, and courtiers accompanied her. From afar she saw
the huntsman on the dragon's hill, and thought it was the dragon standing
there waiting for her, and did not want to go up to him, but at last,
because otherwise the whole town would have been destroyed, she was
forced to go the miserable journey. The King and courtiers returned
home full of grief; the King's marshal, however, was to stand still,
and see all from a distance.

When the King's daughter got to the top of the hill, it was not the
dragon which stood there, but the young huntsman, who comforted her, and
said he would save her, led her into the church, and locked her in. It
was not long before the seven-headed dragon came thither with loud
roaring. When he perceived the huntsman, he was astonished and said,
"What business hast thou here on the hill?" The huntsman answered, "I
want to fight with thee." Said the dragon, "Many knights have left their
lives here, I shall soon have made an end of thee too," and he breathed
fire out of seven jaws. The fire was to have lighted the dry grass, and
the huntsman was to have been suffocated in the heat and smoke, but the
animals came running up and trampled out the fire. Then the dragon rushed
upon the huntsman, but he swung his sword until it sang through the air,
and struck off three of his heads. Then the dragon grew right furious,
and rose up in the air, and spat out flames of fire over the huntsman,
and was about to plunge down on him, but the huntsman once more drew out
his sword, and again cut off three of his heads. The monster became faint
and sank down, nevertheless it was just able to rush upon the huntsman,
but he with his last strength smote its tail off, and as he could fight
no longer, called up his animals who tore it in pieces. When the struggle
was ended, the huntsman unlocked the church, and found the King's daughter
lying on the floor, as she had lost her senses with anguish and terror
during the contest. He carried her out, and when she came to herself
once more, and opened her eyes, he showed her the dragon all cut to
pieces, and told her that she was now delivered. She rejoiced and said,
"Now thou wilt be my dearest husband, for my father has promised me
to him who kills the dragon."  Thereupon she took off her necklace of
coral, and divided it amongst the animals in order to reward them, and
the lion received the golden clasp. Her pocket-handkerchief, however,
on which was her name, she gave to the huntsman, who went and cut the
tongues out of the dragon's seven heads, wrapped them in the handkerchief,
and preserved them carefully.

That done, as he was so faint and weary with the fire and the battle,
he said to the maiden, "We are both faint and weary, we will sleep
awhile." Then she said, "yes," and they lay down on the ground, and the
huntsman said to the lion, "Thou shalt keep watch, that no one surprises
us in our sleep," and both fell asleep. The lion lay down beside them to
watch, but he also was so weary with the fight, that he called to the bear
and said, "Lie down near me, I must sleep a little: if anything comes,
waken me." Then the bear lay down beside him, but he also was tired,
and called the wolf and said, "Lie down by me, I must sleep a little,
but if anything comes, waken me." Then the wolf lay down by him, but
he was tired likewise, and called the fox and said, "Lie down by me,
I must sleep a little; if anything comes, waken me." Then the fox lay
down beside him, but he too was weary, and called the hare and said,
"Lie down near me, I must sleep a little, and if anything should come,
waken me." Then the hare sat down by him, but the poor hare was tired
too, and had no one whom he could call there to keep watch, and fell
asleep. And now the King's daughter, the huntsman, the lion, the bear,
the wolf, the fox, and the hare, were all sleeping a sound sleep. The
marshal, however, who was to look on from a distance, took courage when
he did not see the dragon flying away with the maiden, and finding that
all the hill had become quiet, ascended it. There lay the dragon hacked
and hewn to pieces on the ground, and not far from it were the King's
daughter and a huntsman with his animals, and all of them were sunk in
a sound sleep. And as he was wicked and godless he took his sword, cut
off the huntsman's head, and seized the maiden in his arms, and carried
her down the hill. Then she awoke and was terrified, but the marshal
said, "Thou art in my hands, thou shalt say that it was I who killed the
dragon." "I cannot do that," she replied, "for it was a huntsman with his
animals who did it." Then he drew his sword, and threatened to kill her
if she did not obey him, and so compelled her that she promised it. Then
he took her to the King, who did not know how to contain himself for joy
when he once more looked on his dear child in life, whom he had believed
to have been torn to pieces by the monster. The marshal said to him,
"I have killed the dragon, and delivered the maiden and the whole kingdom
as well, therefore I demand her as my wife, as was promised." The King
said to the maiden, "Is what he says true?"  "Ah, yes," she answered,
"it must indeed be true, but I will not consent to have the wedding
celebrated until after a year and a day," for she thought in that time
she should hear something of her dear huntsman.

The animals, however, were still lying sleeping beside their dead master
on the dragon's hill, and there came a great humble-bee and lighted on
the hare's nose, but the hare wiped it off with his paw, and went on
sleeping. The humble-bee came a second time, but the hare again rubbed
it off and slept on. Then it came for the third time, and stung his
nose so that he awoke. As soon as the hare was awake, he roused the fox,
and the fox, the wolf, and the wolf the bear, and the bear the lion. And
when the lion awoke and saw that the maiden was gone, and his master was
dead, he began to roar frightfully and cried, "Who has done that?  Bear,
why didst thou not waken me?" The bear asked the wolf, "Why didst thou
not waken me?" and the wolf the fox, "Why didst thou not waken me?" and
the fox the hare, "Why didst thou not waken me?" The poor hare alone
did not know what answer to make, and the blame rested with him. Then
they were just going to fall upon him, but he entreated them and said,
"Kill me not, I will bring our master to life again. I know a mountain
on which a root grows which, when placed in the mouth of any one, cures
him of all illness and every wound. But the mountain lies two hundred
hours journey from here." The lion said, "In four-and-twenty hours must
thou have run thither and have come back, and have brought the root with
thee." Then the hare sprang away, and in four-and-twenty hours he was
back, and brought the root with him. The lion put the huntsman's head
on again, and the hare placed the root in his mouth, and immediately
everything united together again, and his heart beat, and life came
back. Then the huntsman awoke, and was alarmed when he did not see the
maiden, and thought, "She must have gone away whilst I was sleeping,
in order to get rid of me." The lion in his great haste had put his
master's head on the wrong way round, but the huntsman did not observe
it because of his melancholy thoughts about the King's daughter. But
at noon, when he was going to eat something, he saw that his head was
turned backwards and could not understand it, and asked the animals what
had happened to him in his sleep. Then the lion told him that they, too,
had all fallen asleep from weariness, and on awaking, had found him dead
with his head cut off, that the hare had brought the life-giving root,
and that he, in his haste, had laid hold of the head the wrong way,
but that he would repair his mistake. Then he tore the huntsman's head
off again, turned it round, and the hare healed it with the root.

The huntsman, however, was sad at heart, and travelled about the
world, and made his animals dance before people. It came to pass that
precisely at the end of one year he came back to the same town where he
had delivered the King's daughter from the dragon, and this time the town
was gaily hung with red cloth.  Then he said to the host, "What does this
mean? Last year the town was all hung with black crape, what means the
red cloth to-day?" The host answered, "Last year our King's daughter was
to have been delivered over to the dragon, but the marshal fought with
it and killed it, and so to-morrow their wedding is to be solemnized,
and that is why the town was then hung with black crape for mourning,
and is to-day covered with red cloth for joy?"

Next day when the wedding was to take place, the huntsman said at
mid-day to the inn-keeper, "Do you believe, sir host, that I while with
you here to-day shall eat bread from the King's own table?" "Nay," said
the host, "I would bet a hundred pieces of gold that that will not come
true." The huntsman accepted the wager, and set against it a purse with
just the same number of gold pieces. Then he called the hare and said,
"Go, my dear runner, and fetch me some of the bread which the King is
eating." Now the little hare was the lowest of the animals, and could
not transfer this order to any the others, but had to get on his legs
himself. "Alas!" thought he, "if I bound through the streets thus alone,
the butchers' dogs will all be after me." It happened as he expected, and
the dogs came after him and wanted to make holes in his good skin. But he
sprang away, have you have never seen one running? and sheltered himself
in a sentry-box without the soldier being aware of it. Then the dogs
came and wanted to have him out, but the soldier did not understand a
jest, and struck them with the butt-end of his gun, till they ran away
yelling and howling. As soon as the hare saw that the way was clear,
he ran into the palace and straight to the King's daughter, sat down
under her chair, and scratched at her foot. Then she said, "Wilt thou
get away?" and thought it was her dog. The hare scratched her foot for
the second time, and she again said, "Wilt thou get away?" and thought it
was her dog. But the hare did not let itself be turned from its purpose,
and scratched her for the third time. Then she peeped down, and knew
the hare by its collar.  She took him on her lap, carried him into
her chamber, and said, "Dear Hare, what dost thou want?" He answered,
"My master, who killed the dragon, is here, and has sent me to ask for
a loaf of bread like that which the King eats." Then she was full of
joy and had the baker summoned, and ordered him to bring a loaf such
as was eaten by the King. The little hare said, "But the baker must
likewise carry it thither for me, that the butchers' dogs may do no
harm to me." The baker carried if for him as far as the door of the inn,
and then the hare got on his hind legs, took the loaf in his front paws,
and carried it to his master. Then said the huntsman, "Behold, sir host,
the hundred pieces of gold are mine." The host was astonished, but the
huntsman went on to say, "Yes, sir host, I have the bread, but now I
will likewise have some of the King's roast meat."

The host said, "I should indeed like to see that," but he would make
no more wagers. The huntsman called the fox and said, "My little fox,
go and fetch me some roast meat, such as the King eats." The red fox
knew the bye-ways better, and went by holes and corners without any
dog seeing him, seated himself under the chair of the King's daughter,
and scratched her foot. Then she looked down and recognized the fox
by its collar, took him into her chamber with her and said, "Dear fox,
what dost thou want?" He answered, "My master, who killed the dragon,
is here, and has sent me. I am to ask for some roast meat such as
the King is eating." Then she made the cook come, who was obliged
to prepare a roast joint, the same as was eaten by the King, and to
carry it for the fox as far as the door. Then the fox took the dish,
waved away with his tail the flies which had settled on the meat, and
then carried it to his master. "Behold, sir host," said the huntsman,
"bread and meat are here but now I will also have proper vegetables with
it, such as are eaten by the King." Then he called the wolf, and said,
"Dear Wolf, go thither and fetch me vegetables such as the King eats."
Then the wolf went straight to the palace, as he feared no one, and when
he got to the King's daughter's chamber, he twitched at the back of her
dress, so that she was forced to look round. She recognized him by his
collar, and took him into her chamber with her, and said, "Dear Wolf,
what dost thou want?" He answered, "My master, who killed the dragon,
is here, I am to ask for some vegetables, such as the King eats." Then
she made the cook come, and he had to make ready a dish of vegetables,
such as the King ate, and had to carry it for the wolf as far as the
door, and then the wolf took the dish from him, and carried it to his
master. "Behold, sir host," said the huntsman, "now I have bread and
meat and vegetables, but I will also have some pastry to eat like that
which the King eats." He called the bear, and said, "Dear Bear, thou
art fond of licking anything sweet; go and bring me some confectionery,
such as the King eats." Then the bear trotted to the palace, and every
one got out of his way, but when he went to the guard, they presented
their muskets, and would not let him go into the royal palace. But he
got up on his hind legs, and gave them a few boxes on the ears, right
and left, with his paws, so that the whole watch broke up, and then
he went straight to the King's daughter, placed himself behind her,
and growled a little.  Then she looked behind her, knew the bear, and
bade him go into her room with her, and said, "Dear Bear, what dost thou
want?" He answered, "My master, who killed the dragon, is here, and I am
to ask for some confectionery, such as the King eats." Then she summoned
her confectioner, who had to bake confectionery such as the King ate,
and carry it to the door for the bear; then the bear first licked up the
comfits which had rolled down, and then he stood upright, took the dish,
and carried it to his master. "Behold, sir host," said the huntsman, "now
I have bread, meat, vegetables and confectionery, but I will drink wine
also, and such as the King drinks." He called his lion to him and said,
"Dear Lion, thou thyself likest to drink till thou art intoxicated, go and
fetch me some wine, such as is drunk by the King." Then the lion strode
through the streets, and the people fled from him, and when he came to the
watch, they wanted to bar the way against him, but he did but roar once,
and they all ran away. Then the lion went to the royal apartment, and
knocked at the door with his tail. Then the King's daughter came forth,
and was almost afraid of the lion, but she knew him by the golden clasp
of her necklace, and bade him go with her into her chamber, and said,
"Dear Lion, what wilt thou have?" He answered, "My master, who killed
the dragon, is here, and I am to ask for some wine such as is drunk by
the King." Then she bade the cup-bearer be called, who was to give the
lion some wine like that which was drunk by the King. The lion said, "I
will go with him, and see that I get the right wine." Then he went down
with the cup-bearer, and when they were below, the cup-bearer wanted to
draw him some of the common wine that was drunk by the King's servants,
but the lion said, "Stop, I will taste the wine first," and he drew
half a measure, and swallowed it down at one draught. "No," said he,
"that is not right." The cup-bearer looked at him askance, but went on,
and was about to give him some out of another barrel which was for the
King's marshal. The lion said, "Stop, let me taste the wine first," and
drew half a measure and drank it. "That is better, but still not right,"
said he. Then the cup-bearer grew angry and said, "How can a stupid
animal like you understand wine?" But the lion gave him a blow behind
the ears, which made him fall down by no means gently, and when he had
got up again, he conducted the lion quite silently into a little cellar
apart, where the King's wine lay, from which no one ever drank. The
lion first drew half a measure and tried the wine, and then he said,
That may possibly be the right sort, and bade the cup-bearer fill six
bottles of it. And now they went upstairs again, but when the lion came
out of the cellar into the open air, he reeled here and there, and was
rather drunk, and the cup-bearer was forced to carry the wine as far as
the door for him, and then the lion took the handle of the basket in his
mouth, and took it to his master. The huntsman said, "Behold, sir host,
here have I bread, meat, vegetables, confectionery and wine such as the
King has, and now I will dine with my animals," and he sat down and ate
and drank, and gave the hare, the fox, the wolf, the bear, and the lion
also to eat and to drink, and was joyful, for he saw that the King's
daughter still loved him. And when he had finished his dinner, he said,
"Sir host, now have I eaten and drunk, as the King eats and drinks, and
now I will go to the King's court and marry the King's daughter." Said
the host, "How can that be, when she already has a betrothed husband,
and when the wedding is to be solemnized to-day?" Then the huntsman drew
forth the handkerchief which the King's daughter had given him on the
dragon's hill, and in which were folded the monster's seven tongues,
and said, "That which I hold in my hand shall help me to do it." Then
the innkeeper looked at the handkerchief, and said, "Whatever I believe,
I do not believe that, and I am willing to stake my house and courtyard
on it." The huntsman, however, took a bag with a thousand gold pieces,
put it on the table, and said, "I stake that on it."

Now the King said to his daughter, at the royal table, "What did all the
wild animals want, which have been coming to thee, and going in and out
of my palace?" She replied, "I may not tell you, but send and have the
master of these animals brought, and you will do well." The King sent
a servant to the inn, and invited the stranger, and the servant came
just as the huntsman had laid his wager with the innkeeper. Then said he,
"Behold, sir host, now the King sends his servant and invites me, but I do
not go in this way." And he said to the servant, "I request the Lord King
to send me royal clothing, and a carriage with six horses, and servants
to attend me." When the King heard the answer, he said to his daughter,
"What shall I do?" She said, "Cause him to be fetched as he desires to
be, and you will do well." Then the King sent royal apparel, a carriage
with six horses, and servants to wait on him. When the huntsman saw them
coming, he said, "Behold, sir host, now I am fetched as I desired to be,"
and he put on the royal garments, took the handkerchief with the dragon's
tongues with him, and drove off to the King. When the King saw him coming,
he said to his daughter, "How shall I receive him?" She answered, "Go to
meet him and you will do well."  Then the King went to meet him and led
him in, and his animals followed. The King gave him a seat near himself
and his daughter, and the marshal, as bridegroom, sat on the other side,
but no longer knew the huntsman. And now at this very moment, the seven
heads of the dragon were brought in as a spectacle, and the King said,
"The seven heads were cut off the dragon by the marshal, wherefore
to-day I give him my daughter to wife." The the huntsman stood up,
opened the seven mouths, and said, "Where are the seven tongues of the
dragon?" Then was the marshal terrified, and grew pale and knew not what
answer he should make, and at length in his anguish he said, "Dragons
have no tongues." The huntsman said, "Liars ought to have none, but
the dragon's tongues are the tokens of the victor," and he unfolded the
handkerchief, and there lay all seven inside it. And he put each tongue
in the mouth to which it belonged, and it fitted exactly. Then he took the
handkerchief on which the name of the princess was embroidered, and showed
it to the maiden, and asked to whom she had given it, and she replied,
"To him who killed the dragon." And then he called his animals, and
took the collar off each of them and the golden clasp from the lion, and
showed them to the maiden and asked to whom they belonged. She answered,
"The necklace and golden clasp were mine, but I divided them among the
animals who helped to conquer the dragon." Then spake the huntsman,
"When I, tired with the fight, was resting and sleeping, the marshal
came and cut off my head. Then he carried away the King's daughter,
and gave out that it was he who had killed the dragon, but that he lied
I prove with the tongues, the handkerchief, and the necklace." And then
he related how his animals had healed him by means of a wonderful root,
and how he had travelled about with them for one year, and had at length
again come there and had learnt the treachery of the marshal by the
inn-keeper's story. Then the King asked his daughter, "Is it true that
this man killed the dragon?" And she answered, "Yes, it is true. Now
can I reveal the wicked deed of the marshal, as it has come to light
without my connivance, for he wrung from me a promise to be silent. For
this reason, however, did I make the condition that the marriage should
not be solemnized for a year and a day." Then the King bade twelve
councillors be summoned who were to pronounce judgment on the marshal,
and they sentenced him to be torn to pieces by four bulls. The marshal was
therefore executed, but the King gave his daughter to the huntsman, and
named him his viceroy over the whole kingdom. The wedding was celebrated
with great joy, and the young King caused his father and his foster-father
to be brought, and loaded them with treasures. Neither did he forget the
inn-keeper, but sent for him and said, "Behold, sir host, I have married
the King's daughter, and your house and yard are mine." The host said,
"Yes, according to justice it is so." But the young King said, "It shall
be done according to mercy," and told him that he should keep his house
and yard, and gave him the thousand pieces of gold as well.

And now the young King and Queen were thoroughly happy, and lived in
gladness together. He often went out hunting because it was a delight to
him, and the faithful animals had to accompany him. In the neighborhood,
however, there was a forest of which it was reported that it was haunted,
and that whosoever did but enter it did not easily get out again. The
young King, however, had a great inclination to hunt in it, and let
the old King have no peace until he allowed him to do so. So he rode
forth with a great following, and when he came to the forest, he saw a
snow-white hart and said to his people, "Wait here until I return, I want
to chase that beautiful creature," and he rode into the forest after it,
followed only by his animals. The attendants halted and waited until
evening, but he did not return, so they rode home, and told the young
Queen that the young King had followed a white hart into the enchanted
forest, and had not come back again. Then she was in the greatest
concern about him. He, however, had still continued to ride on and on
after the beautiful wild animal, and had never been able to overtake it;
when he thought he was near enough to aim, he instantly saw it bound away
into the far distance, and at length it vanished altogether. And now he
perceived that he had penetrated deep into the forest, and blew his horn
but he received no answer, for his attendants could not hear it. And as
night, too, was falling, he saw that he could not get home that day,
so he dismounted from his horse, lighted himself a fire near a tree,
and resolved to spend the night by it.  While he was sitting by the fire,
and his animals also were lying down beside him, it seemed to him that he
heard a human voice. He looked round, but could perceived nothing. Soon
afterwards, he again heard a groan as if from above, and then he looked
up, and saw an old woman sitting in the tree, who wailed unceasingly,
"Oh, oh, oh, how cold I am!" Said he, "Come down, and warm thyself if thou
art cold." But she said, "No, thy animals will bite me." He answered,
"They will do thee no harm, old mother, do come down." She, however,
was a witch, and said, "I will throw down a wand from the tree, and if
thou strikest them on the back with it, they will do me no harm." Then
she threw him a small wand, and he struck them with it, and instantly
they lay still and were turned into stone. And when the witch was safe
from the animals, she leapt down and touched him also with a wand,
and changed him to stone. Thereupon she laughed, and dragged him and
the animals into a vault, where many more such stones already lay.

As, however, the young King did not come back at all, the Queen's anguish
and care grew constantly greater. And it so happened that at this very
time the other brother who had turned to the east when they separated,
came into the kingdom.  He had sought a situation, and had found none,
and had then travelled about here and there, and had made his animals
dance. Then it came into his mind that he would just go and look at the
knife that they had thrust in the trunk of a tree at their parting, that
he might learn how his brother was. When he got there his brother's side
of the knife was half rusted, and half bright. Then he was alarmed and
thought, "A great misfortune must have befallen my brother, but perhaps
I can still save him, for half the knife is still bright." He and his
animals travelled towards the west, and when he entered the gate of
the town, the guard came to meet him, and asked if he was to announce
him to his consort the young Queen, who had for a couple of days been
in the greatest sorrow about his staying away, and was afraid he had
been killed in the enchanted forest? The sentries, indeed, thought no
otherwise than that he was the young King himself, for he looked so
like him, and had wild animals running behind him. Then he saw that
they were speaking of his brother, and thought, "It will be better if
I pass myself off for him, and then I can rescue him more easily." So
he allowed himself to be escorted into the castle by the guard, and was
received with the greatest joy. The young Queen indeed thought that he was
her husband, and asked him why he had stayed away so long. He answered,
"I had lost myself in a forest, and could not find my way out again any
sooner." At night he was taken to the royal bed, but he laid a two-edged
sword between him and the young Queen; she did not know what that could
mean, but did not venture to ask.

He remained in the palace a couple of days, and in the meantime inquired
into everything which related to the enchanted forest, and at last he
said, "I must hunt there once more." The King and the young Queen wanted
to persuade him not to do it, but he stood out against them, and went
forth with a larger following. When he had got into the forest, it fared
with him as with his brother; he saw a white hart and said to his people,
"Stay here, and wait until I return, I want to chase the lovely wild
beast," and then he rode into the forest and his animals ran after him.
But he could not overtake the hart, and got so deep into the forest that
he was forced to pass the night there. And when he had lighted a fire,
he heard some one wailing above him, "Oh, oh, oh, how cold I am!" Then
he looked up, and the self-same witch was sitting in the tree. Said he,
"If thou art cold, come down, little old mother, and warm thyself." She
answered, "No, thy animals will bite me." But he said, "They will
not hurt thee." Then she cried, "I will throw down a wand to thee,
and if thou smitest them with it they will do me no harm." When the
huntsman heard that, he had no confidence in the old woman, and said,
"I will not strike my animals. Come down, or I will fetch thee." Then she
cried, "What dost thou want? Thou shalt not touch me." But he replied,
"If thou dost not come, I will shoot thee." Said she, "Shoot away, I do
not fear thy bullets!" Then he aimed, and fired at her, but the witch
was proof against all leaden bullets, and laughed, and yelled and cried,
"Thou shalt not hit me." The huntsman knew what to do, tore three silver
buttons off his coat, and loaded his gun with them, for against them
her arts were useless, and when he fired she fell down at once with
a scream. Then he set his foot on her and said, Old witch, if thou
dost not instantly confess where my brother is, I will seize thee with
both my hands and throw thee into the fire. She was in a great fright,
begged for mercy and said, He and his animals lie in a vault, turned
to stone. Then he compelled her to go thither with him, threatened her,
and said, Old sea-cat, now shalt thou make my brother and all the human
beings lying here, alive again, or thou shalt go into the fire! She took
a wand and touched the stones, and then his brother with his animals
came to life again, and many others, merchants, artizans, and shepherds,
arose, thanked him for their deliverance, and went to their homes. But
when the twin brothers saw each other again, they kissed each other and
rejoiced with all their hearts. Then they seized the witch, bound her
and laid her on the fire, and when she was burnt the forest opened of
its own accord, and was light and clear, and the King's palace could be
seen at about the distance of a three hours walk.

Thereupon the two brothers went home together, and on the way told each
other their histories. And when the youngest said that he was ruler
of the whole country in the King's stead, the other observed, "That I
remarked very well, for when I came to the town, and was taken for thee,
all royal honours were paid me; the young Queen looked on me as her
husband, and I had to eat at her side, and sleep in thy bed." When the
other heard that, he became so jealous and angry that he drew his sword,
and struck off his brother's head. But when he saw him lying there dead,
and saw his red blood flowing, he repented most violently: "My brother
delivered me," cried he, "and I have killed him for it," and he bewailed
him aloud. Then his hare came and offered to go and bring some of the root
of life, and bounded away and brought it while yet there was time, and
the dead man was brought to life again, and knew nothing about the wound.

After this they journeyed onwards, and the youngest said, "Thou lookest
like me, hast royal apparel on as I have, and the animals follow thee as
they do me; we will go in by opposite gates, and arrive at the same time
from the two sides in the aged King's presence." So they separated, and
at the same time came the watchmen from the one door and from the other,
and announced that the young King and the animals had returned from the
chase. The King said, "It is not possible, the gates lie quite a mile
apart." In the meantime, however, the two brothers entered the courtyard
of the palace from opposite sides, and both mounted the steps. Then the
King said to the daughter, "Say which is thy husband. Each of them looks
exactly like the other, I cannot tell." Then she was in great distress,
and could not tell; but at last she remembered the necklace which she
had given to the animals, and she sought for and found her little golden
clasp on the lion, and she cried in her delight, "He who is followed
by this lion is my true husband". Then the young King laughed and said,
"Yes, he is the right one," and they sat down together to table, and ate
and drank, and were merry.  At night when the young King went to bed, his
wife said, "Why hast thou for these last nights always laid a two-edged
sword in our bed? I thought thou hadst a wish to kill me." Then he knew
how true his brother had been.



61 The Little Peasant

There was a certain village wherein no one lived but really rich peasants,
and just one poor one, whom they called the little peasant. He had not
even so much as a cow, and still less money to buy one, and yet he and
his wife did so wish to have one. One day he said to her, "Hark you,
I have a good thought, there is our gossip the carpenter, he shall make
us a wooden calf, and paint it brown, so that it look like any other,
and in time it will certainly get big and be a cow." The woman also
liked the idea, and their gossip the carpenter cut and planed the calf,
and painted it as it ought to be, and made it with its head hanging down
as if it were eating.

Next morning when the cows were being driven out, the little peasant
called the cow-herd and said, "Look, I have a little calf there, but it is
still small and has still to be carried." The cow-herd said, "All right,
and took it in his arms and carried it to the pasture, and set it among
the grass." The little calf always remained standing like one which was
eating, and the cow-herd said, "It will soon run alone, just look how it
eats already!" At night when he was going to drive the herd home again,
he said to the calf, "If thou canst stand there and eat thy fill, thou
canst also go on thy four legs; I don't care to drag thee home again in
my arms." But the little peasant stood at his door, and waited for his
little calf, and when the cow-herd drove the cows through the village,
and the calf was missing, he inquired where it was. The cow-herd answered,
"It is still standing out there eating. It would not stop and come with
us." But the little peasant said, "Oh, but I must have my beast back
again." Then they went back to the meadow together, but some one had
stolen the calf, and it was gone. The cow-herd said, "It must have run
away." The peasant, however, said, "Don't tell me that," and led the
cow-herd before the mayor, who for his carelessness condemned him to
give the peasant a cow for the calf which had run away.

And now the little peasant and his wife had the cow for which they had
so long wished, and they were heartily glad, but they had no food for
it, and could give it nothing to eat, so it soon had to be killed. They
salted the flesh, and the peasant went into the town and wanted to sell
the skin there, so that he might buy a new calf with the proceeds. On
the way he passed by a mill, and there sat a raven with broken wings,
and out of pity he took him and wrapped him in the skin. As, however,
the weather grew so bad and there was a storm of rain and wind, he could
go no farther, and turned back to the mill and begged for shelter. The
miller's wife was alone in the house, and said to the peasant, "Lay
thyself on the straw there", and gave him a slice of bread with cheese
on it. The peasant ate it, and lay down with his skin beside him,
and the woman thought, "He is tired and has gone to sleep." In the
meantime came the parson; the miller's wife received him well, and said,
"My husband is out, so we will have a feast." The peasant listened,
and when he heard about feasting he was vexed that he had been forced
to make shift with a slice of bread with cheese on it. Then the woman
served up four different things, roast meat, salad, cakes, and wine.

Just as they were about to sit down and eat, there was a knocking
outside. The woman said, "Oh, heavens! It is my husband!" She quickly
hid the roast meat inside the tiled stove, the wine under the pillow,
the salad on the bed, the cakes under it, and the parson in the cupboard
in the entrance. Then she opened the door for her husband, and said,
"Thank heaven, thou art back again! There is such a storm, it looks
as if the world were coming to an end." The miller saw the peasant
lying on the straw, and asked, "What is that fellow doing there?" "Ah,"
said the wife, "the poor knave came in the storm and rain, and begged
for shelter, so I gave him a bit of bread and cheese, and showed him
where the straw was." The man said, "I have no objection, but be quick
and get me something to eat." The woman said, "But I have nothing but
bread and cheese."  "I am contented with anything," replied the husband,
"so far as I am concerned, bread and cheese will do," and looked at
the peasant and said, "Come and eat some more with me." The peasant
did not require to be invited twice, but got up and ate. After this
the miller saw the skin in which the raven was, lying on the ground,
and asked, "What hast thou there?" The peasant answered, "I have
a soothsayer inside it." "Can he foretell anything to me?" said the
miller. "Why not?" answered the peasant, "but he only says four things,
and the fifth he keeps to himself." The miller was curious, and said,
"Let him foretell something for once." Then the peasant pinched the
raven's head, so that he croaked and made a noise like krr, krr. The
miller said, "What did he say?" The peasant answered, "In the first
place, he says that there is some wine hidden under the pillow."
"Bless me!" cried the miller, and went there and found the wine. "Now
go on," said he. The peasant made the raven croak again, and said,
"In the second place, he says that there is some roast meat in the tiled
stove." "Upon my word!" cried the miller, and went thither, and found the
roast meat. The peasant made the raven prophesy still more, and said,
"Thirdly, he says that there is some salad on the bed." "That would be
a fine thing!" cried the miller, and went there and found the salad. At
last the peasant pinched the raven once more till he croaked, and said,
"Fourthly, he says that there are some cakes under the bed." "That would
be a fine thing!" cried the miller, and looked there, and found the cakes.

And now the two sat down to the table together, but the miller's wife was
frightened to death, and went to bed and took all the keys with her. The
miller would have liked much to know the fifth, but the little peasant
said, "First, we will quickly eat the four things, for the fifth is
something bad." So they ate, and after that they bargained how much the
miller was to give for the fifth prophesy, until they agreed on three
hundred thalers. Then the peasant once more pinched the raven's head
till he croaked loudly. The miller asked, "What did he say?" The peasant
replied, "He says that the Devil is hiding outside there in the cupboard
in the entrance." The miller said, "The Devil must go out," and opened
the house-door; then the woman was forced to give up the keys, and the
peasant unlocked the cupboard. The parson ran out as fast as he could,
and the miller said, "It was true; I saw the black rascal with my own
eyes." The peasant, however, made off next morning by daybreak with the
three hundred thalers.

At home the small peasant gradually launched out; he built a beautiful
house, and the peasants said, "The small peasant has certainly been to
the place where golden snow falls, and people carry the gold home in
shovels." Then the small peasant was brought before the Mayor, and bidden
to say from whence his wealth came. He answered, "I sold my cow's skin
in the town, for three hundred thalers." When the peasants heard that,
they too wished to enjoy this great profit, and ran home, killed all their
cows, and stripped off their skins in order to sell them in the town to
the greatest advantage. The Mayor, however, said, "But my servant must
go first." When she came to the merchant in the town, he did not give
her more than two thalers for a skin, and when the others came, he did
not give them so much, and said, "What can I do with all these skins?"

Then the peasants were vexed that the small peasant should have thus
overreached them, wanted to take vengeance on him, and accused him
of this treachery before the Mayor. The innocent little peasant was
unanimously sentenced to death, and was to be rolled into the water,
in a barrel pierced full of holes. He was led forth, and a priest was
brought who was to say a mass for his soul. The others were all obliged
to retire to a distance, and when the peasant looked at the priest,
he recognized the man who had been with the miller's wife.  He said to
him, "I set you free from the cupboard, set me free from the barrel."
At this same moment up came, with a flock of sheep, the very shepherd who
as the peasant knew had long been wishing to be Mayor, so he cried with
all his might, "No, I will not do it; if the whole world insists on it,
I will not do it!" The shepherd hearing that, came up to him, and asked,
"What art thou about? What is it that thou wilt not do?" The peasant said,
"They want to make me Mayor, if I will but put myself in the barrel,
but I will not do it." The shepherd said, "If nothing more than that is
needful in order to be Mayor, I would get into the barrel at once." The
peasant said, "If thou wilt get in, thou wilt be Mayor." The shepherd was
willing, and got in, and the peasant shut the top down on him; then he
took the shepherd's flock for himself, and drove it away. The parson went
to the crowd, and declared that the mass had been said. Then they came
and rolled the barrel towards the water. When the barrel began to roll,
the shepherd cried, "I am quite willing to be Mayor." They believed no
otherwise than that it was the peasant who was saying this, and answered,
"That is what we intend, but first thou shalt look about thee a little
down below there," and they rolled the barrel down into the water.

After that the peasants went home, and as they were entering the village,
the small peasant also came quietly in, driving a flock of sheep and
looking quite contented. Then the peasants were astonished, and said,
"Peasant, from whence comest thou? Hast thou come out of the water?" "Yes,
truly," replied the peasant, "I sank deep, deep down, until at last I
got to the bottom; I pushed the bottom out of the barrel, and crept out,
and there were pretty meadows on which a number of lambs were feeding,
and from thence I brought this flock away with me." Said the peasants,
"Are there any more there?" "Oh, yes," said he, "more than I could do
anything with." Then the peasants made up their minds that they too would
fetch some sheep for themselves, a flock apiece, but the Mayor said,
"I come first." So they went to the water together, and just then there
were some of the small fleecy clouds in the blue sky, which are called
little lambs, and they were reflected in the water, whereupon the peasants
cried, "We already see the sheep down below!" The Mayor pressed forward
and said, "I will go down first, and look about me, and if things promise
well I'll call you." So he jumped in; splash! went the water; he made a
sound as if he were calling them, and the whole crowd plunged in after
him as one man. Then the entire village was dead, and the small peasant,
as sole heir, became a rich man.



62 The Queen Bee

Two kings' sons once went out in search of adventures, and fell into a
wild, disorderly way of living, so that they never came home again. The
youngest, who was called Simpleton, set out to seek his brothers, but
when at length he found them they mocked him for thinking that he with
his simplicity could get through the world, when they two could not make
their way, and yet were so much cleverer. They all three travelled away
together, and came to an ant-hill. The two elder wanted to destroy it,
to see the little ants creeping about in their terror, and carrying their
eggs away, but Simpleton said, "Leave the creatures in peace; I will not
allow you to disturb them." Then they went onwards and came to a lake,
on which a great number of ducks were swimming. The two brothers wanted
to catch a couple and roast them, but Simpleton would not permit it,
and said, "Leave the creatures in peace, I will not suffer you to kill
them." At length they came to a bee's nest, in which there was so much
honey that it ran out of the trunk of the tree where it was. The two
wanted to make a fire beneath the tree, and suffocate the bees in order
to take away the honey, but Simpleton again stopped them and said, "Leave
the creatures in peace, I will not allow you to burn them." At length
the three brothers arrived at a castle where stone horses were standing
in the stables, and no human being was to be seen, and they went through
all the halls until, quite at the end, they came to a door in which were
three locks. In the middle of the door, however, there was a little pane,
through which they could see into the room. There they saw a little grey
man, who was sitting at a table. They called him, once, twice, but he
did not hear; at last they called him for the third time, when he got up,
opened the locks, and came out.  He said nothing, however, but conducted
them to a handsomely-spread table, and when they had eaten and drunk,
he took each of them to a bedroom. Next morning the little grey man came
to the eldest, beckoned to him, and conducted him to a stone table, on
which were inscribed three tasks, by the performance of which the castle
could be delivered. The first was that in the forest, beneath the moss,
lay the princess's pearls, a thousand in number, which must be picked
up, and if by sunset one single pearl was wanting, he who had looked for
them would be turned into stone. The eldest went thither, and sought the
whole day, but when it came to an end, he had only found one hundred,
and what was written on the table came to pass, and he was changed into
stone. Next day, the second brother undertook the adventure; it did not,
however, fare much better with him than with the eldest; he did not find
more than two hundred pearls, and was changed to stone. At last the
turn came to Simpleton also, who sought in the moss. It was, however,
so hard to find the pearls, and he got on so slowly, that he seated
himself on a stone, and wept. And while he was thus sitting, the King
of the ants whose life he had once saved, came with five thousand ants,
and before long the little creatures had got all the pearls together, and
laid them in a heap. The second task, however, was to fetch out of the
lake the key of the King's daughter's bed-chamber. When Simpleton came
to the lake, the ducks which he had saved, swam up to him, dived down,
and brought the key out of the water. But the third task was the most
difficult; from amongst the three sleeping daughters of the King was the
youngest and dearest to be sought out.  They, however, resembled each
other exactly, and were only to be distinguished by their having eaten
different sweetmeats before they fell asleep; the eldest a bit of sugar;
the second a little syrup; and the youngest a spoonful of honey. Then
the Queen of the bees, which Simpleton had protected from the fire,
came and tasted the lips of all three, and at last she remained sitting
on the mouth which had eaten honey, and thus the King's son recognized
the right princess. Then the enchantment was at an end; everything was
released from sleep, and those who had been turned to stone received once
more their natural forms. Simpleton married the youngest and sweetest
princess, and after her father's death became King, and his two brothers
received the two other sisters.



63 The Three Feathers

There was once on a time a King who had three sons, of whom two were
clever and wise, but the third did not speak much, and was simple,
and was called the Simpleton. When the King had become old and weak,
and was thinking of his end, he did not know which of his sons should
inherit the kingdom after him.  Then he said to them, "Go forth,
and he who brings me the most beautiful carpet shall be King after my
death." And that there should be no dispute amongst them, he took them
outside his castle, blew three feathers in the air, and said, "You shall
go as they fly." One feather flew to the east, the other to the west,
but the third flew straight up and did not fly far, but soon fell to
the ground. And now one brother went to the right, and the other to
the left, and they mocked Simpleton, who was forced to stay where the
third feather had fallen. He sat down and was sad, then all at once he
saw that there was a trap-door close by the feather. He raised it up,
found some steps, and went down them, and then he came to another door,
knocked at it, and heard somebody inside calling,


 "Little green maiden small,
 Hopping hither and thither;

 Hop to the door,
 And quickly see who is there."

The door opened, and he saw a great, fat toad sitting, and round about her
a crowd of little toads. The fat toad asked what he wanted? He answered,
"I should like to have the prettiest and finest carpet in the world." Then
she called a young one and said,


 "Little green maiden small,
 Hopping hither and thither,

 Hop quickly and bring me
 The great box here."

The young toad brought the box, and the fat toad opened it, and gave
Simpleton a carpet out of it, so beautiful and so fine, that on the
earth above, none could have been woven like it. Then he thanked her,
and ascended again. The two others had, however, looked on their
youngest brother as so stupid that they believed he would find and
bring nothing at all. "Why should we give ourselves a great deal of
trouble to search?" said they, and got some coarse handkerchiefs from
the first shepherds' wives whom they met, and carried them home to
the King. At the same time Simpleton also came back, and brought his
beautiful carpet, and when the King saw it he was astonished, and said,
"If justice be done, the kingdom belongs to the youngest." But the two
others let their father have no peace, and said that it was impossible
that Simpleton, who in everything lacked understanding, should be King,
and entreated him to make a new agreement with them. Then the father said,
"He who brings me the most beautiful ring shall inherit the kingdom,"
and led the three brothers out, and blew into the air three feathers,
which they were to follow. Those of the two eldest again went east and
west, and Simpleton's feather flew straight up, and fell down near the
door into the earth. Then he went down again to the fat toad, and told
her that he wanted the most beautiful ring. She at once ordered her
great box to be brought, and gave him a ring out of it, which sparkled
with jewels, and was so beautiful that no goldsmith on earth would have
been able to make it. The two eldest laughed at Simpleton for going to
seek a golden ring. They gave themselves no trouble, but knocked the
nails out of an old carriage-ring, and took it to the King; but when
Simpleton produced his golden ring, his father again said, "The kingdom
belongs to him." The two eldest did not cease from tormenting the King
until he made a third condition, and declared that the one who brought
the most beautiful woman home, should have the kingdom. He again blew
the three feathers into the air, and they flew as before.

Then Simpleton without more ado went down to the fat toad, and said,
"I am to take home the most beautiful woman!" "Oh," answered the toad,
"the most beautiful woman! She is not at hand at the moment, but still
thou shalt have her."  She gave him a yellow turnip which had been
hollowed out, to which six mice were harnessed. Then Simpleton said
quite mournfully, "What am I to do with that?" The toad answered, "Just
put one of my little toads into it." Then he seized one at random out of
the circle, and put her into the yellow coach, but hardly was she seated
inside it than she turned into a wonderfully beautiful maiden, and the
turnip into a coach, and the six mice into horses. So he kissed her,
and drove off quickly with the horses, and took her to the King. His
brothers came afterwards; they had given themselves no trouble at all
to seek beautiful girls, but had brought with them the first peasant
women they chanced to meet. When the King saw them he said, "After
my death the kingdom belongs to my youngest son." But the two eldest
deafened the King's ears afresh with their clamour, "We cannot consent
to Simpleton's being King," and demanded that the one whose wife could
leap through a ring which hung in the centre of the hall should have
the preference. They thought, "The peasant women can do that easily;
they are strong enough, but the delicate maiden will jump herself to
death." The aged King agreed likewise to this. Then the two peasant
women jumped, and jumped through the ring, but were so stout that they
fell, and their coarse arms and legs broke in two. And then the pretty
maiden whom Simpleton had brought with him, sprang, and sprang through
as lightly as a deer, and all opposition had to cease. So he received
the crown, and has ruled wisely for a length of time.



64 The Golden Goose

There was a man who had three sons, the youngest of whom was called
Dummling, and was despised, mocked, and put down on every occasion.

It happened that the eldest wanted to go into the forest to hew wood,
and before he went his mother gave him a beautiful sweet cake and a
bottle of wine in order that he might not suffer from hunger or thirst.

When he entered the forest there met him a little grey-haired old man
who bade him good-day, and said, "Do give me a piece of cake out of
your pocket, and let me have a draught of your wine; I am so hungry and
thirsty." But the prudent youth answered, "If I give you my cake and
wine, I shall have none for myself; be off with you," and he left the
little man standing and went on.

But when he began to hew down a tree, it was not long before he made a
false stroke, and the axe cut him in the arm, so that he had to go home
and have it bound up. And this was the little grey man's doing.

After this the second son went into the forest, and his mother gave him,
like the eldest, a cake and a bottle of wine. The little old grey man met
him likewise, and asked him for a piece of cake and a drink of wine. But
the second son, too, said with much reason, "What I give you will be
taken away from myself; be off!" and he left the little man standing
and went on. His punishment, however, was not delayed; when he had made
a few strokes at the tree he struck himself in the leg, so that he had
to be carried home.

Then Dummling said, "Father, do let me go and cut wood." The father
answered, "Your brothers have hurt themselves with it, leave it alone,
you do not understand anything about it." But Dummling begged so long
that at last he said, "Just go then, you will get wiser by hurting
yourself." His mother gave him a cake made with water and baked in the
cinders, and with it a bottle of sour beer.

When he came to the forest the little old grey man met him likewise,
and greeting him, said, "Give me a piece of your cake and a drink
out of your bottle; I am so hungry and thirsty." Dummling answered,
"I have only cinder-cake and sour beer; if that pleases you, we will
sit down and eat." So they sat down, and when Dummling pulled out his
cinder-cake, it was a fine sweet cake, and the sour beer had become
good wine. So they ate and drank, and after that the little man said,
"Since you have a good heart, and are willing to divide what you have,
I will give you good luck. There stands an old tree, cut it down, and you
will find something at the roots." Then the little man took leave of him.

Dummling went and cut down the tree, and when it fell there was a goose
sitting in the roots with feathers of pure gold. He lifted her up, and
taking her with him, went to an inn where he thought he would stay the
night. Now the host had three daughters, who saw the goose and were
curious to know what such a wonderful bird might be, and would have
liked to have one of its golden feathers.

The eldest thought, "I shall soon find an opportunity of pulling out a
feather," and as soon as Dummling had gone out she seized the goose by
the wing, but her finger and hand remained sticking fast to it.

The second came soon afterwards, thinking only of how she might get a
feather for herself, but she had scarcely touched her sister than she
was held fast.

At last the third also came with the like intent, and the others screamed
out, "Keep away; for goodness' sake keep away!" But she did not understand
why she was to keep away. "The others are there," she thought, "I may
as well be there too," and ran to them; but as soon as she had touched
her sister, she remained sticking fast to her. So they had to spend the
night with the goose.

The next morning Dummling took the goose under his arm and set out,
without troubling himself about the three girls who were hanging on to
it. They were obliged to run after him continually, now left, now right,
just as he was inclined to go.

In the middle of the fields the parson met them, and when he saw the
procession he said, "For shame, you good-for-nothing girls, why are you
running across the fields after this young man? is that seemly?" At the
same time he seized the youngest by the hand in order to pull her away,
but as soon as he touched her he likewise stuck fast, and was himself
obliged to run behind.

Before long the sexton came by and saw his master, the parson, running
behind three girls. He was astonished at this and called out, "Hi,
your reverence, whither away so quickly? do not forget that we have a
christening to-day!" and running after him he took him by the sleeve,
but was also held fast to it.

Whilst the five were trotting thus one behind the other, two labourers
came with their hoes from the fields; the parson called out to them and
begged that they would set him and the sexton free. But they had scarcely
touched the sexton when they were held fast, and now there were seven
of them running behind Dummling and the goose.

Soon afterwards he came to a city, where a king ruled who had a daughter
who was so serious that no one could make her laugh. So he had put
forth a decree that whosoever should be able to make her laugh should
marry her. When Dummling heard this, he went with his goose and all her
train before the King's daughter, and as soon as she saw the seven people
running on and on, one behind the other, she began to laugh quite loudly,
and as if she would never leave off. Thereupon Dummling asked to have her
for his wife, and the wedding was celebrated. After the King's death,
Dummling inherited the kingdom and lived a long time contentedly with
his wife.



65 Allerleirauh

There was once on a time a King who had a wife with golden hair, and
she was so beautiful that her equal was not to be found on earth. It
came to pass that she lay ill, and as she felt that she must soon die,
she called the King and said, "If thou wishest to marry again after my
death, take no one who is not quite as beautiful as I am, and who has
not just such golden hair as I have: this thou must promise me." And
after the King had promised her this she closed her eyes and died.

For a long time the King could not be comforted, and had no thought of
taking another wife. At length his councillors said, "There is no help
for it, the King must marry again, that we may have a Queen." And now
messengers were sent about far and wide, to seek a bride who equalled the
late Queen in beauty. In the whole world, however, none was to be found,
and even if one had been found, still there would have been no one who
had such golden hair. So the messengers came home as they went.

Now the King had a daughter, who was just as beautiful as her dead mother,
and had the same golden hair. When she was grown up the King looked at her
one day, and saw that in every respect she was like his late wife, and
suddenly felt a violent love for her. Then he spake to his councillors,
"I will marry my daughter, for she is the counterpart of my late wife,
otherwise I can find no bride who resembles her." When the councillors
heard that, they were shocked, and said, "God has forbidden a father to
marry his daughter, no good can come from such a crime, and the kingdom
will be involved in the ruin."

The daughter was still more shocked when she became aware of her father's
resolution, but hoped to turn him from his design. Then she said to him,
"Before I fulfil your wish, I must have three dresses, one as golden as
the sun, one as silvery as the moon, and one as bright as the stars;
besides this, I wish for a mantle of a thousand different kinds of
fur and hair joined together, and one of every kind of animal in your
kingdom must give a piece of his skin for it." But she thought, "To
get that will be quite impossible, and thus I shall divert my father
from his wicked intentions." The King, however, did not give it up,
and the cleverest maidens in his kingdom had to weave the three dresses,
one as golden as the sun, one as silvery as the moon, and one as bright
as the stars, and his huntsmen had to catch one of every kind of animal
in the whole of his kingdom, and take from it a piece of its skin, and
out of these was made a mantle of a thousand different kinds of fur. At
length, when all was ready, the King caused the mantle to be brought,
spread it out before her, and said, "The wedding shall be to-morrow."

When, therefore, the King's daughter saw that there was no longer any hope
of turning her father's heart, she resolved to run away from him. In the
night whilst every one was asleep, she got up, and took three different
things from her treasures, a golden ring, a golden spinning-wheel, and a
golden reel. The three dresses of the sun, moon, and stars she put into a
nutshell, put on her mantle of all kinds of fur, and blackened her face
and hands with soot. Then she commended herself to God, and went away,
and walked the whole night until she reached a great forest. And as she
was tired, she got into a hollow tree, and fell asleep.

The sun rose, and she slept on, and she was still sleeping when it was
full day.  Then it so happened that the King to whom this forest belonged,
was hunting in it. When his dogs came to the tree, they sniffed, and ran
barking round about it.  The King said to the huntsmen, "Just see what
kind of wild beast has hidden itself in there." The huntsmen obeyed his
order, and when they came back they said, "A wondrous beast is lying in
the hollow tree; we have never before seen one like it. Its skin is fur
of a thousand different kinds, but it is lying asleep." Said the King,
"See if you can catch it alive, and then fasten it to the carriage,
and we will take it with us." When the huntsmen laid hold of the maiden,
she awoke full of terror, and cried to them, "I am a poor child, deserted
by father and mother; have pity on me, and take me with you." Then said
they, "Allerleirauh, thou wilt be useful in the kitchen, come with us,
and thou canst sweep up the ashes." So they put her in the carriage, and
took her home to the royal palace. There they pointed out to her a closet
under the stairs, where no daylight entered, and said, "Hairy animal,
there canst thou live and sleep." Then she was sent into the kitchen,
and there she carried wood and water, swept the hearth, plucked the fowls,
picked the vegetables, raked the ashes, and did all the dirty work.

Allerleirauh lived there for a long time in great wretchedness. Alas,
fair princess, what is to become of thee now! It happened, however,
that one day a feast was held in the palace, and she said to the cook,
"May I go up-stairs for a while, and look on? I will place myself
outside the door." The cook answered, "Yes, go, but you must be back
here in half-an-hour to sweep the hearth." Then she took her oil-lamp,
went into her den, put off her fur-dress, and washed the soot off her
face and hands, so that her full beauty once more came to light. And
she opened the nut, and took out her dress which shone like the sun,
and when she had done that she went up to the festival, and every one
made way for her, for no one knew her, and thought no otherwise than
that she was a king's daughter.  The King came to meet her, gave his
hand to her, and danced with her, and thought in his heart, "My eyes
have never yet seen any one so beautiful!" When the dance was over she
curtsied, and when the King looked round again she had vanished, and
none knew whither. The guards who stood outside the palace were called
and questioned, but no one had seen her.

She had, however, run into her little den, had quickly taken off her
dress, made her face and hands black again, put on the fur-mantle,
and again was Allerleirauh. And now when she went into the kitchen,
and was about to get to her work and sweep up the ashes, the cook said,
"Leave that alone till morning, and make me the soup for the King; I,
too, will go upstairs awhile, and take a look; but let no hairs fall in,
or in future thou shalt have nothing to eat." So the cook went away,
and Allerleirauh made the soup for the king, and made bread soup and the
best she could, and when it was ready she fetched her golden ring from
her little den, and put it in the bowl in which the soup was served. When
the dancing was over, the King had his soup brought and ate it, and he
liked it so much that it seemed to him he had never tasted better. But
when he came to the bottom of the bowl, he saw a golden ring lying, and
could not conceive how it could have got there. Then he ordered the cook
to appear before him. The cook was terrified when he heard the order,
and said to Allerleirauh, "Thou hast certainly let a hair fall into
the soup, and if thou hast, thou shalt be beaten for it."  When he came
before the King the latter asked who had made the soup? The cook replied,
"I made it." But the King said, "That is not true, for it was much better
than usual, and cooked differently." He answered, "I must acknowledge
that I did not make it, it was made by the rough animal." The King said,
"Go and bid it come up here."

When Allerleirauh came, the King said, "Who art thou?" "I am a poor
girl who no longer has any father or mother." He asked further, "Of what
use art thou in my palace?" She answered, "I am good for nothing but to
have boots thrown at my head." He continued, "Where didst thou get the
ring which was in the soup?"  She answered, "I know nothing about the
ring." So the King could learn nothing, and had to send her away again.

After a while, there was another festival, and then, as before,
Allerleirauh begged the cook for leave to go and look on. He answered,
"Yes, but come back again in half-an-hour, and make the King the bread
soup which he so much likes."  Then she ran into her den, washed herself
quickly, and took out of the nut the dress which was as silvery as the
moon, and put it on. Then she went up and was like a princess, and the
King stepped forward to meet her, and rejoiced to see her once more,
and as the dance was just beginning they danced it together.  But when
it was ended, she again disappeared so quickly that the King could not
observe where she went. She, however, sprang into her den, and once more
made herself a hairy animal, and went into the kitchen to prepare the
bread soup.  When the cook had gone up-stairs, she fetched the little
golden spinning-wheel, and put it in the bowl so that the soup covered
it. Then it was taken to the King, who ate it, and liked it as much as
before, and had the cook brought, who this time likewise was forced to
confess that Allerleirauh had prepared the soup.  Allerleirauh again
came before the King, but she answered that she was good for nothing
else but to have boots thrown at her head, and that she knew nothing at
all about the little golden spinning-wheel.

When, for the third time, the King held a festival, all happened just as
it had done before. The cook said, "Faith rough-skin, thou art a witch,
and always puttest something in the soup which makes it so good that the
King likes it better than that which I cook," but as she begged so hard,
he let her go up at the appointed time. And now she put on the dress
which shone like the stars, and thus entered the hall. Again the King
danced with the beautiful maiden, and thought that she never yet had
been so beautiful. And whilst she was dancing, he contrived, without
her noticing it, to slip a golden ring on her finger, and he had given
orders that the dance should last a very long time. When it was ended,
he wanted to hold her fast by her hands, but she tore herself loose,
and sprang away so quickly through the crowd that she vanished from his
sight. She ran as fast as she could into her den beneath the stairs,
but as she had been too long, and had stayed more than half-an-hour
she could not take off her pretty dress, but only threw over it her
fur-mantle, and in her haste she did not make herself quite black,
but one finger remained white. Then Allerleirauh ran into the kitchen,
and cooked the bread soup for the King, and as the cook was away, put
her golden reel into it. When the King found the reel at the bottom of
it, he caused Allerleirauh to be summoned, and then he espied the white
finger, and saw the ring which he had put on it during the dance. Then
he grasped her by the hand, and held her fast, and when she wanted
to release herself and run away, her mantle of fur opened a little,
and the star-dress shone forth. The King clutched the mantle and tore
it off. Then her golden hair shone forth, and she stood there in full
splendour, and could no longer hide herself. And when she had washed the
soot and ashes from her face, she was more beautiful than anyone who had
ever been seen on earth. But the King said, "Thou art my dear bride,
and we will never more part from each other." Thereupon the marriage
was solemnized, and they lived happily until their death.



66 The Hare's Bride

There was once a woman and her daughter who lived in a pretty garden
with cabbages; and a little hare came into it, and during the winter
time ate all the cabbages. Then says the mother to the daughter, "Go into
the garden, and chase the hare away." The girl says to the little hare,
"Sh-sh, hare, you are still eating up all our cabbages." Says the hare,
"Come, maiden, and seat yourself on my little hare's tail, and come with
me into my little hare's hut." The girl will not do it. Next day the hare
comes again and eats the cabbages, then says the mother to the daughter,
"Go into the garden, and drive the hare away." The girl says to the hare,
"Sh-sh, little hare, you are still eating all the cabbages." The little
hare says, "Maiden, seat thyself on my little hare's tail, and come with
me into my little hare's hut." The maiden refuses. The third day the
hare comes again, and eats the cabbages. On this the mother says to the
daughter, "Go into the garden, and hunt the hare away." Says the maiden,
"Sh-sh, little hare, you are still eating all our cabbages." Says the
little hare, "Come, maiden, seat thyself on my little hare's tail, and
come with me into my little hare's hut." The girl seats herself on the
little hare's tail, and then the hare takes her far away to his little
hut, and says, "Now cook green cabbage and millet-seed, and I will invite
the wedding-guests." Then all the wedding-guests assembled. (Who were
the wedding-guests?) That I can tell you as another told it to me. They
were all hares, and the crow was there as parson to marry the bride and
bridegroom, and the fox as clerk, and the altar was under the rainbow.

The girl, however, was sad, for she was all alone. The little hare
comes and says, "Open the doors, open the doors, the wedding-guests are
merry." The bride says nothing, but weeps. The little hare goes away. The
little hare comes back and says, "Take off the lid, take off the lid, the
wedding-guests are hungry." The bride again says nothing, and weeps. The
little hare goes away. The little hare comes back and says, "Take off the
lid, take off the lid, the wedding-guests are waiting." Then the bride
says nothing, and the hare goes away, but she dresses a straw-doll in
her clothes, and gives her a spoon to stir with, and sets her by the pan
with the millet-seed, and goes back to her mother. The little hare comes
once more and says, "Take off the lid, take off the lid," and gets up,
and strikes the doll on the head so that her cap falls off.

Then the little hare sees that it is not his bride, and goes away and
is sorrowful.



67 The Twelve Huntsmen

There was once a King's son who was betrothed to a maiden whom he loved
very much. And when he was sitting beside her and very happy, news came
that his father lay sick unto death, and desired to see him once again
before his end.  Then he said to his beloved, "I must now go and leave
thee, I give thee a ring as a remembrance of me. When I am King, I will
return and fetch thee." So he rode away, and when he reached his father,
the latter was dangerously ill, and near his death. He said to him,
"Dear son, I wished to see thee once again before my end, promise me
to marry as I wish," and he named a certain King's daughter who was to
be his wife. The son was in such trouble that he did not think what
he was doing, and said, "Yes, dear father, your will shall be done,"
and thereupon the King shut his eyes, and died.

When therefore the son had been proclaimed King, and the time of
mourning was over, he was forced to keep the promise which he had given
his father, and caused the King's daughter to be asked in marriage,
and she was promised to him. His first betrothed heard of this, and
fretted so much about his faithlessness that she nearly died. Then her
father said to her, "Dearest child, why art thou so sad? Thou shalt have
whatsoever thou wilt." She thought for a moment and said, "Dear father,
I wish for eleven girls exactly like myself in face, figure, and size."
The father said, "If it be possible, thy desire shall be fulfilled,"
and he caused a search to be made in his whole kingdom, until eleven
young maidens were found who exactly resembled his daughter in face,
figure, and size.

When they came to the King's daughter, she had twelve suits of huntsmen's
clothes made, all alike, and the eleven maidens had to put on the
huntsmen's clothes, and she herself put on the twelfth suit. Thereupon she
took leave of her father, and rode away with them, and rode to the court
of her former betrothed, whom she loved so dearly. Then she inquired if
he required any huntsmen, and if he would take the whole of them into
his service. The King looked at her and did not know her, but as they
were such handsome fellows, he said, "Yes," and that he would willingly
take them, and now they were the King's twelve huntsmen.

The King, however, had a lion which was a wondrous animal, for he knew all
concealed and secret things. It came to pass that one evening he said to
the King, "Thou thinkest thou hast twelve huntsmen?" "Yes," said the King,
"they are twelve huntsmen." The lion continued, "Thou art mistaken, they
are twelve girls."  The King said, "That cannot be true! How wilt thou
prove that to me?" "Oh, just let some peas be strewn in thy ante-chamber,"
answered the lion, "and then thou wilt soon see it. Men have a firm step,
and when they walk over the peas none of them stir, but girls trip and
skip, and drag their feet, and the peas roll about."  The King was well
pleased with the counsel, and caused the peas to be strewn.

There was, however, a servant of the King's who favored the huntsmen,
and when he heard that they were going to be put to this test he went
to them and repeated everything, and said, "The lion wants to make the
King believe that you are girls." Then the King's daughter thanked him,
and said to her maidens, "Put on some strength, and step firmly on the
peas." So next morning when the King had the twelve huntsmen called
before him, and they came into the ante-chamber where the peas were
lying, they stepped so firmly on them, and had such a strong, sure walk,
that not one of the peas either rolled or stirred. Then they went away
again, and the King said to the lion, "Thou hast lied to me, they walk
just like men." The lion said, "They have got to know that they were
going to be put to the test, and have assumed some strength. Just let
twelve spinning-wheels be brought into the ante-chamber some day, and
they will go to them and be pleased with them, and that is what no man
would do." The King liked the advice, and had the spinning-wheels placed
in the ante-chamber.

But the servant, who was well disposed to the huntsmen, went to them,
and disclosed the project. Then when they were alone the King's daughter
said to her eleven girls, "Put some constraint on yourselves, and do not
look round at the spinning-wheels." And next morning when the King had his
twelve huntsmen summoned, they went through the ante-chamber, and never
once looked at the spinning wheels. Then the King again said to the lion,
"Thou hast deceived me, they are men, for they have not looked at the
spinning-wheels." The lion replied, "They have learnt that they were
going to be put to the test, and have restrained themselves." The King,
however, would no longer believe the lion.

The twelve huntsmen always followed the King to the chase, and his
liking for them continually increased. Now it came to pass that once
when they were out hunting, news came that the King's betrothed was
approaching. When the true bride heard that, it hurt her so much that
her heart was almost broken, and she fell fainting to the ground. The
King thought something had happened to his dear huntsman, ran up to
him, wanted to help him, and drew his glove off. Then he saw the ring
which he had given to his first bride, and when he looked in her face
he recognized her. Then his heart was so touched that he kissed her,
and when she opened her eyes he said, "Thou art mine, and I am thine,
and no one in the world can alter that." He sent a messenger to the other
bride, and entreated her to return to her own kingdom, for he had a wife
already, and a man who had just found an old dish did not require a new
one. Thereupon the wedding was celebrated, and the lion was again taken
into favour, because, after all, he had told the truth.



68 The Thief and his Master

Hans wished to put his son to learn a trade, so he went into the church
and prayed to our Lord God to know which would be most advantageous
for him.  Then the clerk got behind the altar, and said, "Thieving,
thieving." On this Hans goes back to his son, and tells him he is to
learn thieving, and that the Lord God had said so. So he goes with his
son to seek a man who is acquainted with thieving. They walk a long
time and come into a great forest, where stands a little house with
an old woman in it. Hans says, "Do you know of a man who is acquainted
with thieving?" "You can learn that here quite well," says the woman,
"my son is a master of it." So he speaks with the son, and asks if he
knows thieving really well? The master-thief says, "I will teach him
well. Come back when a year is over, and then if you recognize your son,
I will take no payment at all for teaching him; but if you don't know him,
you must give me two hundred thalers."

The father goes home again, and the son learns witchcraft and thieving,
thoroughly. When the year is out, the father is full of anxiety to know
how he is to contrive to recognize his son. As he is thus going about
in his trouble, he meets a little dwarf, who says, "Man, what ails you,
that you are always in such trouble?"

"Oh," says Hans, "a year ago I placed my son with a master-thief who
told me I was to come back when the year was out, and that if I then
did not know my son when I saw him, I was to pay two hundred thalers;
but if I did know him I was to pay nothing, and now I am afraid of not
knowing him and can't tell where I am to get the money." Then the dwarf
tells him to take a small basket of bread with him, and to stand beneath
the chimney. "There on the cross-beam is a basket, out of which a little
bird is peeping, and that is your son."

Hans goes thither, and throws a little basket full of black bread in
front of the basket with the bird in it, and the little bird comes out,
and looks up. "Hollo, my son, art thou here?" says the father, and the
son is delighted to see his father, but the master-thief says, "The devil
must have prompted you, or how could you have known your son?" "Father,
let us go," said the youth.

Then the father and son set out homeward. On the way a carriage comes
driving by. Hereupon the son says to his father, "I will change myself
into a large greyhound, and then you can earn a great deal of money
by me." Then the gentleman calls from the carriage, "My man, will
you sell your dog?" "Yes," says the father. "How much do you want for
it?" "Thirty thalers." "Eh, man, that is a great deal, but as it is
such a very fine dog I will have it." The gentleman takes it into his
carriage, but when they have driven a little farther the dog springs
out of the carriage through the window, and goes back to his father,
and is no longer a greyhound.

They go home together. Next day there is a fair in the neighboring
town, so the youth says to his father, "I will now change myself into
a beautiful horse, and you can sell me; but when you have sold me,
you must take off my bridle, or I cannot become a man again." Then the
father goes with the horse to the fair, and the master-thief comes and
buys the horse for a hundred thalers, but the father forgets, and does
not take off the bridle. So the man goes home with the horse, and puts
it in the stable. When the maid crosses the threshold, the horse says,
"Take off my bridle, take off my bridle." Then the maid stands still,
and says, "What, canst thou speak?" So she goes and takes the bridle
off, and the horse becomes a sparrow, and flies out at the door, and
the wizard becomes a sparrow also, and flies after him. Then they come
together and cast lots, but the master loses, and betakes himself to the
water and is a fish. Then the youth also becomes a fish, and they cast
lots again, and the master loses. So the master changes himself into
a cock, and the youth becomes a fox, and bites the master's head off,
and he died and has remained dead to this day.



69 Jorinda and Joringel

There was once an old castle in the midst of a large and thick forest,
and in it an old woman who was a witch dwelt all alone. In the day-time
she changed herself into a cat or a screech-owl, but in the evening she
took her proper shape again as a human being. She could lure wild beasts
and birds to her, and then she killed and boiled and roasted them. If any
one came within one hundred paces of the castle he was obliged to stand
still, and could not stir from the place until she bade him be free. But
whenever an innocent maiden came within this circle, she changed her into
a bird, and shut her up in a wicker-work cage, and carried the cage into
a room in the castle. She had about seven thousand cages of rare birds
in the castle.

Now, there was once a maiden who was called Jorinda, who was fairer than
all other girls. She and a handsome youth named Joringel had promised
to marry each other. They were still in the days of betrothal, and their
greatest happiness was being together. One day in order that they might be
able to talk together in quiet they went for a walk in the forest. "Take
care," said Joringel, "that you do not go too near the castle."

It was a beautiful evening; the sun shone brightly between the trunks
of the trees into the dark green of the forest, and the turtle-doves
sang mournfully upon the young boughs of the birch-trees.

Jorinda wept now and then: she sat down in the sunshine and was sorrowful.
Joringel was sorrowful too; they were as sad as if they were about to
die. Then they looked around them, and were quite at a loss, for they
did not know by which way they should go home. The sun was still half
above the mountain and half set.

Joringel looked through the bushes, and saw the old walls of the castle
close at hand. He was horror-stricken and filled with deadly fear. Jorinda
was singing---


 "My little bird, with the necklace red,
 Sings sorrow, sorrow, sorrow,
 He sings that the dove must soon be dead,
 Sings sorrow, sor---jug, jug, jug."

Joringel looked for Jorinda. She was changed into a nightingale, and sang,
"jug, jug, jug." A screech-owl with glowing eyes flew three times round
about her, and three times cried, "to-whoo, to-whoo, to-whoo!"

Joringel could not move: he stood there like a stone, and could neither
weep nor speak, nor move hand or foot.

The sun had now set. The owl flew into the thicket, and directly
afterwards there came out of it a crooked old woman, yellow and lean,
with large red eyes and a hooked nose, the point of which reached to her
chin. She muttered to herself, caught the nightingale, and took it away
in her hand.

Joringel could neither speak nor move from the spot; the nightingale
was gone.  At last the woman came back, and said in a hollow voice,
"Greet thee, Zachiel.  If the moon shines on the cage, Zachiel, let him
loose at once." Then Joringel was freed. He fell on his knees before the
woman and begged that she would give him back his Jorinda, but she said
that he should never have her again, and went away. He called, he wept,
he lamented, but all in vain, "Ah, what is to become of me?"

Joringel went away, and at last came to a strange village; there he
kept sheep for a long time. He often walked round and round the castle,
but not too near to it.  At last he dreamt one night that he found a
blood-red flower, in the middle of which was a beautiful large pearl;
that he picked the flower and went with it to the castle, and that
everything he touched with the flower was freed from enchantment; he
also dreamt that by means of it he recovered his Jorinda.

In the morning, when he awoke, he began to seek over hill and dale if
he could find such a flower. He sought until the ninth day, and then,
early in the morning, he found the blood-red flower. In the middle of
it there was a large dew-drop, as big as the finest pearl.

Day and night he journeyed with this flower to the castle. When he was
within a hundred paces of it he was not held fast, but walked on to the
door. Joringel was full of joy; he touched the door with the flower,
and it sprang open. He walked in through the courtyard, and listened for
the sound of the birds. At last he heard it.  He went on and found the
room from whence it came, and there the witch was feeding the birds in
the seven thousand cages.

When she saw Joringel she was angry, very angry, and scolded and spat
poison and gall at him, but she could not come within two paces of him. He
did not take any notice of her, but went and looked at the cages with
the birds; but there were many hundred nightingales, how was he to find
his Jorinda again?

Just then he saw the old woman quietly take away a cage with a bird in
it, and go towards the door.

Swiftly he sprang towards her, touched the cage with the flower, and also
the old woman. She could now no longer bewitch any one; and Jorinda was
standing there, clasping him round the neck, and she was as beautiful
as ever!



70 The Three Sons of Fortune

A father once called his three sons before him, and he gave to the first a
cock, to the second a scythe, and to the third a cat. "I am already aged,"
said he, "my death is nigh, and I have wished to take thought for you
before my end; money I have not, and what I now give you seems of little
worth, but all depends on your making a sensible use of it. Only seek out
a country where such things are still unknown, and your fortune is made."

After the father's death the eldest went away with his cock, but wherever
he came the cock was already known; in the towns he saw him from a long
distance, sitting upon the steeples and turning round with the wind,
and in the villages he heard more than one crowing; no one would show
any wonder at the creature, so that it did not look as if he would make
his fortune by it.

At last, however, it happened that he came to an island where the people
knew nothing about cocks, and did not even understand how to divide their
time. They certainly knew when it was morning or evening, but at night,
if they did not sleep through it, not one of them knew how to find out
the time.

"Look!" said he, "what a proud creature! it has a ruby-red crown upon
its head, and wears spurs like a knight; it calls you three times
during the night, at fixed hours, and when it calls for the last time,
the sun soon rises. But if it crows by broad daylight, then take notice,
for there will certainly be a change of weather."

The people were well pleased; for a whole night they did not sleep, and
listened with great delight as the cock at two, four, and six o'clock,
loudly and clearly proclaimed the time. They asked if the creature
were for sale, and how much he wanted for it? "About as much gold as
an ass can carry," answered he. "A ridiculously small price for such a
precious creature!" they cried unanimously, and willingly gave him what
he had asked.

When he came home with his wealth his brothers were astonished, and the
second said, "Well, I will go forth and see whether I cannot get rid
of my scythe as profitably." But it did not look as if he would, for
labourers met him everywhere, and they had scythes upon their shoulders
as well as he.

At last, however, he chanced upon an island where the people knew nothing
of scythes. When the corn was ripe there, they took cannon out to the
fields and shot it down. Now this was rather an uncertain affair; many
shot right over it, others hit the ears instead of the stems, and shot
them away, whereby much was lost, and besides all this, it made a terrible
noise. So the man set to work and mowed it down so quietly and quickly
that the people opened their mouths with astonishment. They agreed to
give him what he wanted for the scythe, and he received a horse laden
with as much gold as it could carry.

And now the third brother wanted to take his cat to the right man. He
fared just like the others; so long as he stayed on the mainland there
was nothing to be done. Every place had cats, and there were so many of
them that new-born kittens were generally drowned in the ponds.

At last he sailed over to an island, and it luckily happened that no cats
had ever yet been seen there, and that the mice had got the upper hand so
much that they danced upon the tables and benches whether the master were
at home or not.  The people complained bitterly of the plague; the King
himself in his palace did not know how to secure himself against them;
mice squeaked in every corner, and gnawed whatever they could lay hold
of with their teeth. But now the cat began her chase, and soon cleared
a couple of rooms, and the people begged the King to buy the wonderful
beast for the country. The King willingly gave what was asked, which
was a mule laden with gold, and the third brother came home with the
greatest treasure of all.

The cat made herself merry with the mice in the royal palace, and killed
so many that they could not be counted. At last she grew warm with the
work and thirsty, so she stood still, lifted up her head and cried,
"Mew. Mew!" When they heard this strange cry, the King and all his
people were frightened, and in their terror ran all at once out of the
palace. Then the King took counsel what was best to be done; at last it
was determined to send a herald to the cat, and demand that she should
leave the palace, or if not, she was to expect that force would be
used against her. The councillors said, "Rather will we let ourselves
be plagued with the mice, for to that misfortune we are accustomed,
than give up our lives to such a monster as this." A noble youth,
therefore, was sent to ask the cat "whether she would peaceably quit
the castle?" But the cat, whose thirst had become still greater, merely
answered, "Mew! Mew!" The youth understood her to say, "Most certainly
not! most certainly not!" and took this answer to the King. "Then," said
the councillors, "she shall yield to force." Cannon were brought out, and
the palace was soon in flames. When the fire reached the room where the
cat was sitting, she sprang safely out of the window; but the besiegers
did not leave off until the whole palace was shot down to the ground.



71 How Six Men Got on in the World

There was once a man who understood all kinds of arts; he served in war,
and behaved well and bravely, but when the war was over he received
his dismissal, and three farthings for his expenses on the way. "Stop,"
said he, "I shall not be content with this. If I can only meet with the
right people, the King will yet have to give me all the treasure of the
country." Then full of anger he went into the forest, and saw a man
standing therein who had plucked up six trees as if they were blades
of corn. He said to him, "Wilt thou be my servant and go with me?"
"Yes," he answered, "but, first, I will take this little bundle of
sticks home to my mother," and he took one of the trees, and wrapped
it round the five others, lifted the bundle on his back, and carried
it away. Then he returned and went with his master, who said, "We two
ought to be able to get through the world very well," and when they
had walked on for a short while they found a huntsman who was kneeling,
had shouldered his gun, and was about to fire. The master said to him,
"Huntsman, what art thou going to shoot?" He answered, "Two miles from
here a fly is sitting on the branch of an oak-tree, and I want to shoot
its left eye out." "Oh, come with me," said the man, "if we three are
together, we certainly ought to be able to get on in the world!" The
huntsman was ready, and went with him, and they came to seven windmills
whose sails were turning round with great speed, and yet no wind was
blowing either on the right or the left, and no leaf was stirring. Then
said the man, "I know not what is driving the windmills, not a breath of
air is stirring," and he went onwards with his servants, and when they
had walked two miles they saw a man sitting on a tree who was shutting
one nostril, and blowing out of the other. "Good gracious!  what are you
doing up there?" He answered, "Two miles from here are seven windmills;
look, I am blowing them till they turn round." "Oh, come with me,"
said the man. "If we four are together, we shall carry the whole world
before us!"  Then the blower came down and went with him, and after a
while they saw a man who was standing on one leg and had taken off the
other, and laid it beside him. Then the master said, "You have arranged
things very comfortably to have a rest." "I am a runner," he replied,
"and to stop myself running far too fast, I have taken off one of my
legs, for if I run with both, I go quicker than any bird can fly." "Oh,
go with me. If we five are together, we shall carry the whole world before
us." So he went with them, and it was not long before they met a man who
wore a cap, but had put it quite on one ear. Then the master said to him,
"Gracefully, gracefully, don't stick your cap on one ear, you look just
like a tom-fool!" "I must not wear it otherwise," said he, "for if I set
my hat straight, a terrible frost comes on, and all the birds in the air
are frozen, and drop dead on the ground." "Oh, come with me," said the
master. "If we six are together, we can carry the whole world before us."

Now the six came to a town where the King had proclaimed that whosoever
ran a race with his daughter and won the victory, should be her husband,
but whosoever lost it, must lose his head. Then the man presented
himself and said, "I will, however, let my servant run for me." The
King replied, "Then his life also must be staked, so that his head
and thine are both set on the victory." When that was settled and made
secure, the man buckled the other leg on the runner, and said to him,
"Now be nimble, and help us to win." It was fixed that the one who was
first to bring some water from a far distant well was to be the victor.
The runner received a pitcher, and the King's daughter one too, and
they began to run at the same time, but in an instant, when the King's
daughter had got a very little way, the people who were looking on could
see no more of the runner, and it was just as if the wind had whistled
by. In a short time he reached the well, filled his pitcher with water,
and turned back. Half-way home, however, he was overcome with fatigue,
and set his pitcher down, lay down himself, and fell asleep. He had,
however, made a pillow of a horse's skull which was lying on the ground,
in order that he might lie uncomfortably, and soon wake up again. In
the meantime the King's daughter, who could also run very well quite as
well as any ordinary mortal can had reached the well, and was hurrying
back with her pitcher full of water, and when she saw the runner lying
there asleep, she was glad and said, "My enemy is delivered over into
my hands," emptied his pitcher, and ran on. And now all would have been
lost if by good luck the huntsman had not been standing at the top of the
castle, and had not seen everything with his sharp eyes. Then said he,
"The King's daughter shall still not prevail against us;" and he loaded
his gun, and shot so cleverly, that he shot the horse's skull away from
under the runner's head without hurting him. Then the runner awoke, leapt
up, and saw that his pitcher was empty, and that the King's daughter
was already far in advance. He did not lose heart, however, but ran
back to the well with his pitcher, again drew some water, and was at
home again, ten minutes before the King's daughter. "Behold!" said he,
"I have not bestirred myself till now, it did not deserve to be called
running before."

But it pained the King, and still more his daughter, that she should be
carried off by a common disbanded soldier like that; so they took counsel
with each other how to get rid of him and his companions. Then said the
King to her, "I have thought of a way; don't be afraid, they shall not
come back again." And he said to them, "You shall now make merry together,
and eat and drink," and he conducted them to a room which had a floor of
iron, and the doors also were of iron, and the windows were guarded with
iron bars. There was a table in the room covered with delicious food,
and the King said to them, "Go in, and enjoy yourselves." And when they
were inside, he ordered the doors to be shut and bolted. Then he sent
for the cook, and commanded him to make a fire under the room until the
iron became red-hot. This the cook did, and the six who were sitting at
table began to feel quite warm, and they thought the heat was caused by
the food; but as it became still greater, and they wanted to get out, and
found that the doors and windows were bolted, they became aware that the
King must have an evil intention, and wanted to suffocate them. "He shall
not succeed, however," said the one with the cap. "I will cause a frost
to come, before which the fire shall be ashamed, and creep away." Then
he put his cap on straight, and immediately there came such a frost that
all heat disappeared, and the food on the dishes began to freeze. When an
hour or two had passed by, and the King believed that they had perished
in the heat, he had the doors opened to behold them himself. But when
the doors were opened, all six were standing there, alive and well,
and said that they should very much like to get out to warm themselves,
for the very food was fast frozen to the dishes with the cold. Then,
full of anger, the King went down to the cook, scolded him, and asked
why he had not done what he had been ordered to do. But the cook replied,
"There is heat enough there, just look yourself." Then the King saw that
a fierce fire was burning under the iron room, and perceived that there
was no getting the better of the six in this way.

Again the King considered how to get rid of his unpleasant guests, and
caused their chief to be brought and said, "If thou wilt take gold and
renounce my daughter, thou shalt have as much as thou wilt."

"Oh, yes, Lord King," he answered, "give me as much as my servant can
carry, and I will not ask for your daughter."

On this the King was satisfied, and the other continued, "In fourteen
days, I will come and fetch it." Thereupon he summoned together all the
tailors in the whole kingdom, and they were to sit for fourteen days and
sew a sack. And when it was ready, the strong one who could tear up trees
had to take it on his back, and go with it to the King. Then said the
King, "Who can that strong fellow be who is carrying a bundle of linen
on his back that is as big as a house?" and he was alarmed and said,
"What a lot of gold he can carry away!" Then he commanded a ton of gold
to be brought; it took sixteen of his strongest men to carry it, but the
strong one snatched it up in one hand, put it in his sack, and said, "Why
don't you bring more at the same time? that hardly covers the bottom!"
Then, little by little, the King caused all his treasure to be brought
thither, and the strong one pushed it into the sack, and still the sack
was not half full with it. "Bring more," cried he, "these few crumbs
don't fill it." Then seven thousand carts with gold had to be gathered
together in the whole kingdom, and the strong one thrust them and the
oxen harnessed to them into his sack. "I will examine it no longer," said
he, "but will just take what comes, so long as the sack is but full."
When all that was inside, there was still room for a great deal more;
Then he said, "I will just make an end of the thing; people do sometimes
tie up a sack even when it is not full." So he took it on his back, and
went away with his comrades. When the King now saw how one single man
was carrying away the entire wealth of the country, he became enraged,
and bade his horsemen mount and pursue the six, and ordered them to take
the sack away from the strong one.  Two regiments speedily overtook the
six, and called out, "You are prisoners, put down the sack with the gold,
or you will all be cut to pieces!" "What say you?"  cried the blower,
"that we are prisoners! Rather than that should happen, all of you shall
dance about in the air." And he closed one nostril, and with the other
blew on the two regiments. Then they were driven away from each other,
and carried into the blue sky over all the mountains one here, the other
there. One sergeant cried for mercy; he had nine wounds, and was a brave
fellow who did not deserve ill treatment. The blower stopped a little
so that he came down without injury, and then the blower said to him,
"Now go home to thy King, and tell him he had better send some more
horsemen, and I will blow them all into the air." When the King was
informed of this he said, "Let the rascals go. They have the best of
it." Then the six conveyed the riches home, divided it amongst them,
and lived in content until their death.



72 The Wolf and the Man

Once on a time the fox was talking to the wolf of the strength of man;
how no animal could withstand him, and how all were obliged to employ
cunning in order to preserve themselves from him. Then the wolf answered,
"If I had but the chance of seeing a man for once, I would set on him
notwithstanding." "I can help thee to do that," said the fox. "Come
to me early to-morrow morning, and I will show thee one." The wolf
presented himself betimes, and the fox took him out on the road by which
the huntsmen went daily. First came an old discharged soldier. "Is
that a man?" inquired the wolf. "No," answered the fox, "that was
one." Afterwards came a little boy who was going to school. "Is that
a man?"  "No, that is going to be one." At length came a hunter with his
double-barrelled gun at his back, and hanger by his side. Said the fox
to the wolf, "Look, there comes a man, thou must attack him, but I will
take myself off to my hole." The wolf then rushed on the man. When the
huntsman saw him he said, "It is a pity that I have not loaded with a
bullet," aimed, and fired his small shot in his face.  The wolf pulled
a very wry face, but did not let himself be frightened, and attacked
him again, on which the huntsman gave him the second barrel. The wolf
swallowed his pain, and rushed on the huntsman, but he drew out his
bright hanger, and gave him a few cuts with it right and left, so that,
bleeding everywhere, he ran howling back to the fox. "Well, brother wolf,"
said the fox, "how hast thou got on with man?" "Ah!" replied the wolf,
"I never imagined the strength of man to be what it is! First, he took a
stick from his shoulder, and blew into it, and then something flew into
my face which tickled me terribly; then he breathed once more into the
stick, and it flew into my nose like lightning and hail; when I was
quite close, he drew a white rib out of his side, and he beat me so
with it that I was all but left lying dead." "See what a braggart thou
art!" said the fox. "Thou throwest thy hatchet so far that thou canst
not fetch it back again!"



73 The Wolf and the Fox

The wolf had the fox with him, and whatsoever the wolf wished, that the
fox was compelled to do, for he was the weaker, and he would gladly have
been rid of his master. It chanced that once as they were going through
the forest, the wolf said, "Red-fox, get me something to eat, or else I
will eat thee thyself." Then the fox answered, "I know a farm-yard where
there are two young lambs; if thou art inclined, we will fetch one of
them." That suited the wolf, and they went thither, and the fox stole
the little lamb, took it to the wolf, and went away. The wolf devoured
it, but was not satisfied with one; he wanted the other as well, and
went to get it. As, however, he did it so awkwardly, the mother of the
little lamb heard him, and began to cry out terribly, and to bleat so
that the farmer came running there. They found the wolf, and beat him
so mercilessly, that he went to the fox limping and howling. "Thou hast
misled me finely," said he; "I wanted to fetch the other lamb, and the
country folks surprised me, and have beaten me to a jelly." The fox
replied, "Why art thou such a glutton?"

Next day they again went into the country, and the greedy wolf once more
said, "Red-fox, get me something to eat, or I will eat thee thyself." Then
answered the fox, "I know a farm-house where the wife is baking pancakes
to-night; we will get some of them for ourselves." They went there,
and the fox slipped round the house, and peeped and sniffed about until
he discovered where the dish was, and then drew down six pancakes and
carried them to the wolf. "There is something for thee to eat," said he
to him, and then went his way. The wolf swallowed down the pancakes in an
instant, and said, "They make one want more," and went thither and tore
the whole dish down so that it broke in pieces.  This made such a great
noise that the woman came out, and when she saw the wolf she called the
people, who hurried there, and beat him as long as their sticks would
hold together, till with two lame legs, and howling loudly, he got back
to the fox in the forest. "How abominably thou hast misled me!" cried he,
"the peasants caught me, and tanned my skin for me." But the fox replied,
"Why art thou such a glutton?"

On the third day, when they were out together, and the wolf could only
limp along painfully, he again said, "Red-fox, get me something to eat,
or I will eat thee thyself." The fox answered, "I know a man who has
been killing, and the salted meat is lying in a barrel in the cellar;
we will get that." Said the wolf, "I will go when thou dost, that thou
mayest help me if I am not able to get away." "I am willing," said
the fox, and showed him the by-paths and ways by which at length they
reached the cellar. There was meat in abundance, and the wolf attacked
it instantly and thought, "There is plenty of time before I need leave
off!" The fox liked it also, but looked about everywhere, and often ran
to the hole by which they had come in, and tried if his body was still
thin enough to slip through it. The wolf said, "Dear fox, tell me why
thou art running here and there so much, and jumping in and out?"

"I must see that no one is coming," replied the crafty fellow. "Don't
eat too much!" Then said the wolf, "I shall not leave until the barrel
is empty." In the meantime the farmer, who had heard the noise of the
fox's jumping, came into the cellar. When the fox saw him he was out
of the hole at one bound. The wolf wanted to follow him, but he had
made himself so fat with eating that he could no longer get through,
but stuck fast. Then came the farmer with a cudgel and struck him dead,
but the fox bounded into the forest, glad to be rid of the old glutton.



74 The Fox and His Cousin

The she-wolf brought forth a young one, and invited the fox to be
godfather.  "After all, he is a near relative of ours," said she, "he
has a good understanding, and much talent; he can instruct my little son,
and help him forward in the world."  The fox, too, appeared quite honest,
and said, "Worthy Mrs. Gossip, I thank you for the honour which you are
doing me; I will, however, conduct myself in such a way that you shall
be repaid for it." He enjoyed himself at the feast, and made merry;
afterwards he said, "Dear Mrs. Gossip, it is our duty to take care of the
child, it must have good food that it may be strong. I know a sheep-fold
from which we might fetch a nice morsel." The wolf was pleased with the
ditty, and she went out with the fox to the farm-yard. He pointed out the
fold from afar, and said, "You will be able to creep in there without
being seen, and in the meantime I will look about on the other side to
see if I can pick up a chicken."  He, however, did not go there, but sat
down at the entrance to the forest, stretched his legs and rested. The
she-wolf crept into the stable. A dog was lying there, and it made such
a noise that the peasants came running out, caught Gossip Wolf, and
poured a strong burning mixture, which had been prepared for washing,
over her skin. At last she escaped, and dragged herself outside. There
lay the fox, who pretended to be full of complaints, and said, "Ah, dear
Mistress Gossip, how ill I have fared, the peasants have fallen on me,
and have broken every limb I have; if you do not want me to lie where
I am and perish, you must carry me away." The she-wolf herself was only
able to go away slowly, but she was in such concern about the fox that she
took him on her back, and slowly carried him perfectly safe and sound to
her house. Then the fox cried to her, "Farewell, dear Mistress Gossip,
may the roasting you have had do you good," laughed heartily at her,
and bounded off.



75 The Fox and the Cat

It happened that the cat met the fox in a forest, and as she thought
to herself, "He is clever and full of experience, and much esteemed in
the world," she spoke to him in a friendly way. "Good-day, dear Mr. Fox,
how are you? How is all with you? How are you getting through this dear
season?" The fox, full of all kinds of arrogance, looked at the cat from
head to foot, and for a long time did not know whether he would give any
answer or not. At last he said, "Oh, thou wretched beard-cleaner, thou
piebald fool, thou hungry mouse-hunter, what canst thou be thinking
of? Dost thou venture to ask how I am getting on? What hast thou
learnt? How many arts dost thou understand?" "I understand but one,"
replied the cat, modestly. "What art is that?" asked the fox. "When the
hounds are following me, I can spring into a tree and save myself." "Is
that all?" said the fox.  "I am master of a hundred arts, and have into
the bargain a sackful of cunning.  Thou makest me sorry for thee; come
with me, I will teach thee how people get away from the hounds." Just
then came a hunter with four dogs. The cat sprang nimbly up a tree, and
sat down on top of it, where the branches and foliage quite concealed
her. "Open your sack, Mr. Fox, open your sack," cried the cat to him,
but the dogs had already seized him, and were holding him fast. "Ah,
Mr.  Fox," cried the cat. "You with your hundred arts are left in the
lurch! Had you been able to climb like me, you would not have lost
your life."



76 The Pink

There was once on a time a Queen to whom God had given no children. Every
morning she went into the garden and prayed to God in heaven to bestow on
her a son or a daughter. Then an angel from heaven came to her and said,
"Be at rest, thou shalt have a son with the power of wishing, so that
whatsoever in the world he wishes for, that shall he have." Then she went
to the King, and told him the joyful tidings, and when the time was come
she gave birth to a son, and the King was filled with gladness. Every
morning she went with the child to the garden where the wild beasts were
kept, and washed herself there in a clear stream. It happened once when
the child was a little older, that it was lying in her arms and she fell
asleep. Then came the old cook, who knew that the child had the power
of wishing, and stole it away, and he took a hen, and cut it in pieces,
and dropped some of its blood on the Queen's apron and on her dress. Then
he carried the child away to a secret place, where a nurse was obliged to
suckle it, and he ran to the King and accused the Queen of having allowed
her child to be taken from her by the wild beasts. When the King saw the
blood on her apron, he believed this, fell into such a passion that he
ordered a high tower to be built, in which neither sun nor moon could
be seen, and had his wife put into it, and walled up. Here she was to
stay for seven years without meat or drink, and die of hunger. But God
sent two angels from heaven in the shape of white doves, which flew to
her twice a day, and carried her food until the seven years were over.

The cook, however, thought to himself, "If the child has the power of
wishing, and I am here, he might very easily get me into trouble." So he
left the palace and went to the boy, who was already big enough to speak,
and said to him, "Wish for a beautiful palace for thyself with a garden,
and all else that pertains to it."  Scarcely were the words out of the
boy's mouth, when everything was there that he had wished for. After
a while the cook said to him, "It is not well for thee to be so alone,
wish for a pretty girl as a companion." Then the King's son wished for
one, and she immediately stood before him, and was more beautiful than
any painter could have painted her. The two played together, and loved
each other with all their hearts, and the old cook went out hunting like
a nobleman. The thought, however, occurred to him that the King's son
might some day wish to be with his father, and thus bring him into great
peril. So he went out and took the maiden aside, and said, "To-night
when the boy is asleep, go to his bed and plunge this knife into his
heart, and bring me his heart and tongue, and if thou dost not do it,
thou shalt lose thy life." Thereupon he went away, and when he returned
next day she had not done it, and said, "Why should I shed the blood of
an innocent boy who has never harmed any one?" The cook once more said,
"If thou dost not do it, it shall cost thee thy own life." When he had
gone away, she had a little hind brought to her, and ordered her to be
killed, and took her heart and tongue, and laid them on a plate, and when
she saw the old man coming, she said to the boy, "Lie down in thy bed,
and draw the clothes over thee." Then the wicked wretch came in and said,
"Where are the boy's heart and tongue?" The girl reached the plate to
him, but the King's son threw off the quilt, and said, "Thou old sinner,
why didst thou want to kill me? Now will I pronounce thy sentence. Thou
shalt become a black poodle and have a gold collar round thy neck, and
shalt eat burning coals, till the flames burst forth from thy throat." And
when he had spoken these words, the old man was changed into a poodle dog,
and had a gold collar round his neck, and the cooks were ordered to bring
up some live coals, and these he ate, until the flames broke forth from
his throat.  The King's son remained there a short while longer, and he
thought of his mother, and wondered if she were still alive. At length
he said to the maiden, "I will go home to my own country; if thou wilt
go with me, I will provide for thee."  "Ah," she replied, "the way is
so long, and what shall I do in a strange land where I am unknown?" As
she did not seem quite willing, and as they could not be parted from
each other, he wished that she might be changed into a beautiful pink,
and took her with him. Then he went away to his own country, and the
poodle had to run after him. He went to the tower in which his mother
was confined, and as it was so high, he wished for a ladder which would
reach up to the very top. Then he mounted up and looked inside, and cried,
"Beloved mother, Lady Queen, are you still alive, or are you dead?" She
answered, "I have just eaten, and am still satisfied," for she thought
the angels were there. Said he, "I am your dear son, whom the wild beasts
were said to have torn from your arms; but I am alive still, and will
speedily deliver you." Then he descended again, and went to his father,
and caused himself to be announced as a strange huntsman, and asked if
he could give him a place. The King said yes, if he was skilful and could
get game for him, he should come to him, but that deer had never taken up
their quarters in any part of the district or country. Then the huntsman
promised to procure as much game for him as he could possibly use at the
royal table. So he summoned all the huntsmen together, and bade them go
out into the forest with him. And he went with them and made them form
a great circle, open at one end where he stationed himself, and began to
wish. Two hundred deer and more came running inside the circle at once,
and the huntsmen shot them. Then they were all placed on sixty country
carts, and driven home to the King, and for once he was able to deck
his table with game, after having had none at all for years.

Now the King felt great joy at this, and commanded that his entire
household should eat with him next day, and made a great feast. When they
were all assembled together, he said to the huntsmen, "As thou art so
clever, thou shalt sit by me." He replied, "Lord King, your majesty must
excuse me, I am a poor huntsman." But the King insisted on it, and said,
"Thou shalt sit by me," until he did it. Whilst he was sitting there,
he thought of his dearest mother, and wished that one of the King's
principal servants would begin to speak of her, and would ask how it was
faring with the Queen in the tower, and if she were alive still, or had
perished. Hardly had he formed the wish than the marshal began, and said,
"Your majesty, we live joyously here, but how is the Queen living in
the tower?  Is she still alive, or has she died?" But the King replied,
"She let my dear son be torn to pieces by wild beasts; I will not have
her named." Then the huntsman arose and said, "Gracious lord father,
she is alive still, and I am her son, and I was not carried away by
wild beasts, but by that wretch the old cook, who tore me from her
arms when she was asleep, and sprinkled her apron with the blood of a
chicken." Thereupon he took the dog with the golden collar, and said,
"That is the wretch!" and caused live coals to be brought, and these
the dog was compelled to devour before the sight of all, until flames
burst forth from its throat.  On this the huntsman asked the King if he
would like to see the dog in his true shape, and wished him back into
the form of the cook, in the which he stood immediately, with his white
apron, and his knife by his side. When the King saw him he fell into a
passion, and ordered him to be cast into the deepest dungeon.  Then the
huntsman spoke further and said, "Father, will you see the maiden who
brought me up so tenderly and who was afterwards to murder me, but did
not do it, though her own life depended on it?" The King replied, "Yes,
I would like to see her." The son said, "Most gracious father, I will
show her to you in the form of a beautiful flower," and he thrust his
hand into his pocket and brought forth the pink, and placed it on the
royal table, and it was so beautiful that the King had never seen one
to equal it. Then the son said, "Now will I show her to you in her own
form," and wished that she might become a maiden, and she stood there
looking so beautiful that no painter could have made her look more so.

And the King sent two waiting-maids and two attendants into the tower,
to fetch the Queen and bring her to the royal table. But when she was
led in she ate nothing, and said, "The gracious and merciful God who
has supported me in the tower, will speedily deliver me." She lived
three days more, and then died happily, and when she was buried, the two
white doves which had brought her food to the tower, and were angels of
heaven, followed her body and seated themselves on her grave. The aged
King ordered the cook to be torn in four pieces, but grief consumed the
King's own heart, and he soon died. His son married the beautiful maiden
whom he had brought with him as a flower in his pocket, and whether they
are still alive or not, is known to God.



77 Clever Grethel

There was once a cook named Grethel, who wore shoes with red rosettes, and
when she walked out with them on, she turned herself this way and that,
and thought, "You certainly are a pretty girl!" And when she came home she
drank, in her gladness of heart, a draught of wine, and as wine excites
a desire to eat, she tasted the best of whatever she was cooking until
she was satisfied, and said, "The cook must know what the food is like."

It came to pass that the master one day said to her, "Grethel, there is
a guest coming this evening; prepare me two fowls very daintily." "I
will see to it, master," answered Grethel. She killed two fowls,
scalded them, plucked them, put them on the spit, and towards evening
set them before the fire, that they might roast. The fowls began to turn
brown, and were nearly ready, but the guest had not yet arrived. Then
Grethel called out to her master, "If the guest does not come, I must
take the fowls away from the fire, but it will be a sin and a shame if
they are not eaten directly, when they are juiciest." The master said,
"I will run myself, and fetch the guest." When the master had turned his
back, Grethel laid the spit with the fowls on one side, and thought,
"Standing so long by the fire there, makes one hot and thirsty; who
knows when they will come? Meanwhile, I will run into the cellar, and
take a drink." She ran down, set a jug, said, "God bless it to thy use,
Grethel," and took a good drink, and took yet another hearty draught.

Then she went and put the fowls down again to the fire, basted them, and
drove the spit merrily round. But as the roast meat smelt so good, Grethel
thought, "Something might be wrong, it ought to be tasted!" She touched
it with her finger, and said, "Ah! how good fowls are! It certainly is a
sin and a shame that they are not eaten directly!" She ran to the window,
to see if the master was not coming with his guest, but she saw no one,
and went back to the fowls and thought, "One of the wings is burning! I
had better take it off and eat it." So she cut it off, ate it, and enjoyed
it, and when she had done, she thought, "the other must go down too,
or else master will observe that something is missing." When the two
wings were eaten, she went and looked for her master, and did not see
him. It suddenly occurred to her, "Who knows? They are perhaps not coming
at all, and have turned in somewhere." Then she said, "Hallo, Grethel,
enjoy yourself, one fowl has been cut into, take another drink, and eat
it up entirely; when it is eaten you will have some peace, why should
God's good gifts be spoilt?" So she ran into the cellar again, took an
enormous drink and ate up the one chicken in great glee. When one of the
chickens was swallowed down, and still her master did not come, Grethel
looked at the other and said, "Where one is, the other should be likewise,
the two go together; what's right for the one is right for the other;
I think if I were to take another draught it would do me no harm." So she
took another hearty drink, and let the second chicken rejoin the first.

While she was just in the best of the eating, her master came and
cried, hurry up, "Haste thee, Grethel, the guest is coming directly
after me!" "Yes, sir, I will soon serve up," answered Grethel. Meantime
the master looked to see that the table was properly laid, and took the
great knife, wherewith he was going to carve the chickens, and sharpened
it on the steps. Presently the guest came, and knocked politely and
courteously at the house-door. Grethel ran, and looked to see who was
there, and when she saw the guest, she put her finger to her lips and
said, "Hush! hush! get away as quickly as you can, if my master catches
you it will be the worse for you; he certainly did ask you to supper,
but his intention is to cut off your two ears. Just listen how he is
sharpening the knife for it!" The guest heard the sharpening, and hurried
down the steps again as fast as he could.  Grethel was not idle; she ran
screaming to her master, and cried, "You have invited a fine guest!" "Eh,
why, Grethel? What do you mean by that?" "Yes," said she, "he has taken
the chickens which I was just going to serve up, off the dish, and has
run away with them!" "That's a nice trick!" said her master, and lamented
the fine chickens. "If he had but left me one, so that something remained
for me to eat." He called to him to stop, but the guest pretended not to
hear. Then he ran after him with the knife still in his hand, crying,
"Just one, just one," meaning that the guest should leave him just one
chicken, and not take both. The guest, however, thought no otherwise
than that he was to give up one of his ears, and ran as if fire were
burning under him, in order to take them both home with him.



78 The Old Man and His Grandson

There was once a very old man, whose eyes had become dim, his ears
dull of hearing, his knees trembled, and when he sat at table he could
hardly hold the spoon, and spilt the broth upon the table-cloth or let
it run out of his mouth. His son and his son's wife were disgusted at
this, so the old grandfather at last had to sit in the corner behind
the stove, and they gave him his food in an earthenware bowl, and not
even enough of it. And he used to look towards the table with his eyes
full of tears. Once, too, his trembling hands could not hold the bowl,
and it fell to the ground and broke. The young wife scolded him, but he
said nothing and only sighed. Then they bought him a wooden bowl for a
few half-pence, out of which he had to eat.

They were once sitting thus when the little grandson of four years
old began to gather together some bits of wood upon the ground. "What
are you doing there?" asked the father. "I am making a little trough,"
answered the child, "for father and mother to eat out of when I am big."

The man and his wife looked at each other for a while, and presently began
to cry. Then they took the old grandfather to the table, and henceforth
always let him eat with them, and likewise said nothing if he did spill
a little of anything.



79 The Water-Nix

A little brother and sister were once playing by a well, and while they
were thus playing, they both fell in. A water-nix lived down below, who
said, "Now I have got you, now you shall work hard for me!" and carried
them off with her. She gave the girl dirty tangled flax to spin, and she
had to fetch water in a bucket with a hole in it, and the boy had to hew
down a tree with a blunt axe, and they got nothing to eat but dumplings
as hard as stones. Then at last the children became so impatient,
that they waited until one Sunday, when the nix was at church, and ran
away. But when church was over, the nix saw that the birds were flown,
and followed them with great strides. The children saw her from afar,
and the girl threw a brush behind her which formed an immense hill of
bristles, with thousands and thousands of spikes, over which the nix
was forced to scramble with great difficulty; at last, however, she
got over. When the children saw this, the boy threw behind him a comb
which made a great hill of combs with a thousand times a thousand teeth,
but the nix managed to keep herself steady on them, and at last crossed
over that. Then the girl threw behind her a looking-glass which formed a
hill of mirrors, and was so slippery that it was impossible for the nix
to cross it. Then she thought, "I will go home quickly and fetch my axe,
and cut the hill of glass in half." Long before she returned, however, and
had hewn through the glass, the children had escaped to a great distance,
and the water-nix was obliged to betake herself to her well again.



80 The Death of the Little Hen

Once upon a time the little hen went with the little cock to the nut-hill,
and they agreed together that whichsoever of them found a kernel of a nut
should share it with the other. Then the hen found a large, large nut,
but said nothing about it, intending to eat the kernel herself. The
kernel, however, was so large that she could not swallow it, and it
remained sticking in her throat, so that she was alarmed lest she should
be choked. Then she cried, "Cock, I entreat thee to run as fast thou
canst, and fetch me some water, or I shall choke." The little cock did
run as fast as he could to the spring, and said, "Stream, thou art to
give me some water; the little hen is lying on the nut-hill, and she
has swallowed a large nut, and is choking." The well answered, "First
run to the bride, and get her to give thee some red silk." The little
cock ran to the bride and said, "Bride, you are to give me some red silk;
I want to give red silk to the well, the well is to give me some water,
I am to take the water to the little hen who is lying on the nut-hill
and has swallowed a great nut-kernel, and is choking with it." The bride
answered, "First run and bring me my little wreath which is hanging to
a willow."  So the little cock ran to the willow, and drew the wreath
from the branch and took it to the bride, and the bride gave him some
water for it. Then the little cock took the water to the hen, but when
he got there the hen had choked in the meantime, and lay there dead and
motionless. Then the cock was so distressed that he cried aloud, and
every animal came to lament the little hen, and six mice built a little
carriage to carry her to her grave, and when the carriage was ready they
harnessed themselves to it, and the cock drove. On the way, however,
they met the fox, who said, "Where art thou going, little cock?" "I am
going to bury my little hen." "May I drive with thee?" "Yes, but seat
thyself at the back of the carriage, for in the front my little horses
could not drag thee." Then the fox seated himself at the back, and after
that the wolf, the bear, the stag, the lion, and all the beasts of the
forest did the same. Then the procession went onwards, and they reached
the stream. "How are we to get over?" said the little cock. A straw was
lying by the stream, and it said, "I will lay myself across, and you
shall drive over me." But when the six mice came to the bridge, the straw
slipped and fell into the water, and the six mice all fell in and were
drowned. Then they were again in difficulty, and a coal came and said,
"I am large enough, I will lay myself across and you shall drive over
me." So the coal also laid itself across the water, but unhappily just
touched it, on which the coal hissed, was extinguished and died.  When a
stone saw that, it took pity on the little cock, wished to help him,
and laid itself over the water. Then the cock drew the carriage himself,
but when he got it over and reached the other shore with the dead hen,
and was about to draw over the others who were sitting behind as well,
there were too many of them, the carriage ran back, and they all fell
into the water together, and were drowned. Then the little cock was left
alone with the dead hen, and dug a grave for her and laid her in it,
and made a mound above it, on which he sat down and fretted until he
died too, and then every one was dead.



81 Brother Lustig

There was one on a time a great war, and when it came to an end,
many soldiers were discharged. Then Brother Lustig also received his
dismissal, and besides that, nothing but a small loaf of contract-bread,
and four kreuzers in money, with which he departed. St. Peter had,
however, placed himself in his way in the shape of a poor beggar,
and when Brother Lustig came up, he begged alms of him. Brother Lustig
replied, "Dear beggar-man, what am I to give you? I have been a soldier,
and have received my dismissal, and have nothing but this little loaf
of contract-bread, and four kreuzers of money; when that is gone,
I shall have to beg as well as you. Still I will give you something."
Thereupon he divided the loaf into four parts, and gave the apostle one
of them, and a kreuzer likewise. St. Peter thanked him, went onwards,
and threw himself again in the soldier's way as a beggar, but in another
shape; and when he came up begged a gift of him as before. Brother
Lustig spoke as he had done before, and again gave him a quarter of
the loaf and one kreuzer. St. Peter thanked him, and went onwards,
but for the third time placed himself in another shape as a beggar on
the road, and spoke to Brother Lustig. Brother Lustig gave him also the
third quarter of bread and the third kreuzer. St. Peter thanked him,
and Brother Lustig went onwards, and had but a quarter of the loaf, and
one kreuzer.  With that he went into an inn, ate the bread, and ordered
one kreuzer's worth of beer. When he had had it, he journeyed onwards,
and then St. Peter, who had assumed the appearance of a discharged
soldier, met and spoke to him thus: "Good day, comrade, canst thou not
give me a bit of bread, and a kreuzer to get a drink?" "Where am I to
procure it?" answered Brother Lustig; "I have been discharged, and I
got nothing but a loaf of ammunition-bread and four kreuzers in money. I
met three beggars on the road, and I gave each of them a quarter of my
bread, and one kreuzer. The last quarter I ate in the inn, and had a
drink with the last kreuzer. Now my pockets are empty, and if thou also
hast nothing we can go a-begging together." "No," answered St. Peter,
"we need not quite do that. I know a little about medicine, and I will
soon earn as much as I require by that." "Indeed," said Brother Lustig,
"I know nothing of that, so I must go and beg alone." "Just come with
me," said St. Peter, "and if I earn anything, thou shalt have half of
it." "All right," said Brother Lustig, so they went away together.

Then they came to a peasant's house inside which they heard loud
lamentations and cries; so they went in, and there the husband was lying
sick unto death, and very near his end, and his wife was crying and
weeping quite loudly. "Stop that howling and crying," said St. Peter,
"I will make the man well again," and he took a salve out of his
pocket, and healed the sick man in a moment, so that he could get up,
and was in perfect health. In great delight the man and his wife said,
"How can we reward you? What shall we give you?" But St. Peter would take
nothing, and the more the peasant folks offered him, the more he refused.
Brother Lustig, however, nudged St. Peter, and said, "Take something;
sure enough we are in need of it." At length the woman brought a lamb and
said to St.  Peter that he really must take that, but he would not. Then
Brother Lustig gave him a poke in the side, and said, "Do take it, you
stupid fool; we are in great want of it!" Then St. Peter said at last,
"Well, I will take the lamb, but I won't carry it; if thou wilt insist
on having it, thou must carry it." "That is nothing," said Brother
Lustig. "I will easily carry it," and took it on his shoulder. Then they
departed and came to a wood, but Brother Lustig had begun to feel the
lamb heavy, and he was hungry, so he said to St. Peter, "Look, that's
a good place, we might cook the lamb there, and eat it." "As you like,"
answered St. Peter, "but I can't have anything to do with the cooking;
if thou wilt cook, there is a kettle for thee, and in the meantime I will
walk about a little until it is ready. Thou must, however, not begin to
eat until I have come back, I will come at the right time." "Well, go,
then," said Brother Lustig, "I understand cookery, I will manage it." Then
St. Peter went away, and Brother Lustig killed the lamb, lighted a fire,
threw the meat into the kettle, and boiled it. The lamb was, however,
quite ready, and the apostle Peter had not come back, so Brother Lustig
took it out of the kettle, cut it up, and found the heart. "That is said
to be the best part," said he, and tasted it, but at last he ate it all
up. At length St. Peter returned and said, "Thou mayst eat the whole
of the lamb thyself, I will only have the heart, give me that." Then
Brother Lustig took a knife and fork, and pretended to look anxiously
about amongst the lamb's flesh, but not to be able to find the heart,
and at last he said abruptly, "There is none here." "But where can it
be?" said the apostle. "I don't know," replied Brother Lustig, "but look,
what fools we both are, to seek for the lamb's heart, and neither of
us to remember that a lamb has no heart!" "Oh," said St. Peter, "that
is something quite new! Every animal has a heart, why is a lamb to have
none?" "No, be assured, my brother," said Brother Lustig, "that a lamb
has no heart; just consider it seriously, and then you will see that it
really has none." "Well, it is all right," said St. Peter, "if there is
no heart, then I want none of the lamb; thou mayst eat it alone." "What
I can't eat now, I will carry away in my knapsack," said Brother Lustig,
and he ate half the lamb, and put the rest in his knapsack.

They went farther, and then St. Peter caused a great stream of water
to flow right across their path, and they were obliged to pass through
it. Said St. Peter, "Do thou go first." "No," answered Brother Lustig,
"thou must go first," and he thought, "if the water is too deep I will
stay behind." Then St. Peter strode through it, and the water just
reached to his knee. So Brother Lustig began to go through also, but the
water grew deeper and reached to his throat. Then he cried, "Brother,
help me!" St. Peter said, "Then wilt thou confess that thou hast eaten
the lamb's heart?" "No," said he, "I have not eaten it." Then the water
grew deeper still and rose to his mouth. "Help me, brother," cried the
soldier. St. Peter said, "Then wilt thou confess that thou hast eaten
the lamb's heart?" "No," he replied, "I have not eaten it." St. Peter,
however, would not let him be drowned, but made the water sink and helped
him through it.

Then they journeyed onwards, and came to a kingdom where they heard
that the King's daughter lay sick unto death. "Hollo, brother!" said
the soldier to St.  Peter, "this is a chance for us; if we can heal
her we shall be provided for, for life!" But St. Peter was not half
quick enough for him, "Come, lift your legs, my dear brother," said he,
"that we may get there in time." But St. Peter walked slower and slower,
though Brother Lustig did all he could to drive and push him on, and
at last they heard that the princess was dead. "Now we are done for!"
said Brother Lustig; "that comes of thy sleepy way of walking!" "Just
be quiet," answered St. Peter, "I can do more than cure sick people;
I can bring dead ones to life again." "Well, if thou canst do that,"
said Brother Lustig, "it's all right, but thou shouldst earn at least
half the kingdom for us by that." Then they went to the royal palace,
where every one was in great grief, but St. Peter told the King that he
would restore his daughter to life. He was taken to her, and said, "Bring
me a kettle and some water," and when that was brought, he bade everyone
go out, and allowed no one to remain with him but Brother Lustig. Then
he cut off all the dead girl's limbs, and threw them in the water,
lighted a fire beneath the kettle, and boiled them. And when the flesh
had fallen away from the bones, he took out the beautiful white bones,
and laid them on a table, and arranged them together in their natural
order. When he had done that, he stepped forward and said three times,
"In the name of the holy Trinity, dead woman, arise." And at the third
time, the princess arose, living, healthy and beautiful. Then the King
was in the greatest joy, and said to St. Peter, "Ask for thy reward; even
if it were half my kingdom, I would give it thee." But St. Peter said,
"I want nothing for it."  "Oh, thou tomfool!" thought Brother Lustig to
himself, and nudged his comrade's side, and said, "Don't be so stupid! If
thou hast no need of anything, I have." St.  Peter, however, would have
nothing, but as the King saw that the other would very much like to have
something, he ordered his treasurer to fill Brother Lustig's knapsack
with gold. Then they went on their way, and when they came to a forest,
St. Peter said to Brother Lustig, "Now, we will divide the gold." "Yes,"
he replied, "we will." So St. Peter divided the gold, and divided it
into three heaps.  Brother Lustig thought to himself, "What craze has
he got in his head now? He is making three shares, and there are only
two of us!" But St. Peter said, "I have divided it exactly; there is
one share for me, one for thee, and one for him who ate the lamb's heart."

"Oh, I ate that!" replied Brother Lustig, and hastily swept up the
gold. "You may trust what I say." "But how can that be true," said
St. Peter, "when a lamb has no heart?" "Eh, what, brother, what can you
be thinking of? Lambs have hearts like other animals, why should only they
have none?" "Well, so be it," said St. Peter, "keep the gold to yourself,
but I will stay with you no longer; I will go my way alone." "As you like,
dear brother," answered Brother Lustig. "Farewell."

Then St. Peter went a different road, but Brother Lustig thought,
"It is a good thing that he has taken himself off, he is certainly a
strange saint, after all." Then he had money enough, but did not know
how to manage it, squandered it, gave it away, and and when some time
had gone by, once more had nothing. Then he arrived in a certain country
where he heard that a King's daughter was dead.  "Oh, ho!" thought he,
"that may be a good thing for me; I will bring her to life again, and see
that I am paid as I ought to be." So he went to the King, and offered
to raise the dead girl to life again. Now the King had heard that a
discharged soldier was traveling about and bringing dead persons to
life again, and thought that Brother Lustig was the man; but as he had
no confidence in him, he consulted his councillors first, who said that
he might give it a trial as his daughter was dead. Then Brother Lustig
ordered water to be brought to him in a kettle, bade every one go out,
cut the limbs off, threw them in the water and lighted a fire beneath,
just as he had seen St. Peter do. The water began to boil, the flesh fell
off, and then he took the bones out and laid them on the table, but he did
not know the order in which to lay them, and placed them all wrong and in
confusion. Then he stood before them and said, "In the name of the most
holy Trinity, dead maiden, I bid thee arise," and he said this thrice,
but the bones did not stir. So he said it thrice more, but also in vain:
"Confounded girl that you are, get up!" cried he, "Get up, or it shall
be worse for you!" When he had said that, St. Peter suddenly appeared in
his former shape as a discharged soldier; he entered by the window and
said, "Godless man, what art thou doing? How can the dead maiden arise,
when thou hast thrown about her bones in such confusion?" "Dear brother,
I have done everything to the best of my ability," he answered. "This
once, I will help thee out of thy difficulty, but one thing I tell thee,
and that is that if ever thou undertakest anything of the kind again, it
will be the worse for thee, and also that thou must neither demand nor
accept the smallest thing from the King for this!" Thereupon St. Peter
laid the bones in their right order, said to the maiden three times,
"In the name of the most holy Trinity, dead maiden, arise," and the
King's daughter arose, healthy and beautiful as before. Then St. Peter
went away again by the window, and Brother Lustig was rejoiced to find
that all had passed off so well, but was very much vexed to think that
after all he was not to take anything for it. "I should just like to
know," thought he, "what fancy that fellow has got in his head, for
what he gives with one hand he takes away with the other there is no
sense whatever in it!" Then the King offered Brother Lustig whatsoever
he wished to have, but he did not dare to take anything; however, by
hints and cunning, he contrived to make the King order his knapsack to
be filled with gold for him, and with that he departed.  When he got out,
St. Peter was standing by the door, and said, "Just look what a man thou
art; did I not forbid thee to take anything, and there thou hast thy
knapsack full of gold!" "How can I help that," answered Brother Lustig,
"if people will put it in for me?" "Well, I tell thee this, that if
ever thou settest about anything of this kind again thou shalt suffer
for it!" "Eh, brother, have no fear, now I have money, why should I
trouble myself with washing bones?" "Faith," said St. Peter, "the gold
will last a long time! In order that after this thou mayst never tread
in forbidden paths, I will bestow on thy knapsack this property, namely,
that whatsoever thou wishest to have inside it, shall be there. Farewell,
thou wilt now never see me more." "Good-bye," said Brother Lustig, and
thought to himself, "I am very glad that thou hast taken thyself off,
thou strange fellow; I shall certainly not follow thee." But of the
magical power which had been bestowed on his knapsack, he thought no more.

Brother Lustig travelled about with his money, and squandered and wasted
what he had as before. When at last he had no more than four kreuzers,
he passed by an inn and thought, "The money must go," and ordered three
kreuzers' worth of wine and one kreuzer's worth of bread for himself. As
he was sitting there drinking, the smell of roast goose made its way to
his nose. Brother Lustig looked about and peeped, and saw that the host
had two geese standing in the oven. Then he remembered that his comrade
had said that whatsoever he wished to have in his knapsack should be
there, so he said, "Oh, ho! I must try that with the geese." So he
went out, and when he was outside the door, he said, "I wish those two
roasted geese out of the oven and in my knapsack," and when he had said
that, he unbuckled it and looked in, and there they were inside it. "Ah,
that's right!" said he, "now I am a made man!" and went away to a meadow
and took out the roast meat. When he was in the midst of his meal,
two journeymen came up and looked at the second goose, which was not
yet touched, with hungry eyes. Brother Lustig thought to himself, "One
is enough for me," and called the two men up and said, "Take the goose,
and eat it to my health." They thanked him, and went with it to the inn,
ordered themselves a half bottle of wine and a loaf, took out the goose
which had been given them, and began to eat. The hostess saw them and
said to her husband, "Those two are eating a goose; just look and see
if it is not one of ours, out of the oven." The landlord ran thither,
and behold the oven was empty! "What!" cried he, "you thievish crew,
you want to eat goose as cheap as that? Pay for it this moment; or I will
wash you well with green hazel-sap." The two said, "We are no thieves, a
discharged soldier gave us the goose, outside there in the meadow." "You
shall not throw dust in my eyes that way! the soldier was here but he
went out by the door, like an honest fellow. I looked after him myself;
you are the thieves and shall pay!" But as they could not pay, he took
a stick, and cudgeled them out of the house.

Brother Lustig went his way and came to a place where there was a
magnificent castle, and not far from it a wretched inn. He went to
the inn and asked for a night's lodging, but the landlord turned him
away, and said, "There is no more room here, the house is full of noble
guests." "It surprises me that they should come to you and not go to that
splendid castle," said Brother Lustig. "Ah, indeed," replied the host,
"but it is no slight matter to sleep there for a night; no one who has
tried it so far, has ever come out of it alive."

"If others have tried it," said Brother Lustig, "I will try it too."

"Leave it alone," said the host, "it will cost you your neck." "It won't
kill me at once," said Brother Lustig, "just give me the key, and some
good food and wine." So the host gave him the key, and food and wine,
and with this Brother Lustig went into the castle, enjoyed his supper,
and at length, as he was sleepy, he lay down on the ground, for there was
no bed. He soon fell asleep, but during the night was disturbed by a great
noise, and when he awoke, he saw nine ugly devils in the room, who had
made a circle, and were dancing around him.  Brother Lustig said, "Well,
dance as long as you like, but none of you must come too close." But the
devils pressed continually nearer to him, and almost stepped on his face
with their hideous feet. "Stop, you devils' ghosts," said he, but they
behaved still worse. Then Brother Lustig grew angry, and cried, "Hola! but
I will soon make it quiet," and got the leg of a chair and struck out into
the midst of them with it. But nine devils against one soldier were still
too many, and when he struck those in front of him, the others seized him
behind by the hair, and tore it unmercifully. "Devils' crew," cried he,
"it is getting too bad, but wait. Into my knapsack, all nine of you!" In
an instant they were in it, and then he buckled it up and threw it into
a corner. After this all was suddenly quiet, and Brother Lustig lay down
again, and slept till it was bright day. Then came the inn-keeper, and the
nobleman to whom the castle belonged, to see how he had fared; but when
they perceived that he was merry and well they were astonished, and asked,
"Have the spirits done you no harm, then?" "The reason why they have not,"
answered Brother Lustig, "is because I have got the whole nine of them
in my knapsack! You may once more inhabit your castle quite tranquilly,
none of them will ever haunt it again." The nobleman thanked him, made
him rich presents, and begged him to remain in his service, and he would
provide for him as long as he lived. "No," replied Brother Lustig, "I
am used to wandering about, I will travel farther." Then he went away,
and entered into a smithy, laid the knapsack, which contained the nine
devils on the anvil, and asked the smith and his apprentices to strike
it. So they smote with their great hammers with all their strength,
and the devils uttered howls which were quite pitiable. When he opened
the knapsack after this, eight of them were dead, but one which had been
lying in a fold of it, was still alive, slipped out, and went back again
to hell. Thereupon Brother Lustig travelled a long time about the world,
and those who know them can tell many a story about him, but at last he
grew old, and thought of his end, so he went to a hermit who was known
to be a pious man, and said to him, "I am tired of wandering about,
and want now to behave in such a manner that I shall enter into the
kingdom of Heaven." The hermit replied, "There are two roads, one is
broad and pleasant, and leads to hell, the other is narrow and rough,
and leads to heaven." "I should be a fool," thought Brother Lustig,
"if I were to take the narrow, rough road." So he set out and took
the broad and pleasant road, and at length came to a great black door,
which was the door of Hell. Brother Lustig knocked, and the door-keeper
peeped out to see who was there. But when he saw Brother Lustig, he was
terrified, for he was the very same ninth devil who had been shut up in
the knapsack, and had escaped from it with a black eye. So he pushed the
bolt in again as quickly as he could, ran to the devil's lieutenant, and
said, "There is a fellow outside with a knapsack, who wants to come in,
but as you value your lives don't allow him to enter, or he will wish the
whole of hell into his knapsack. He once gave me a frightful hammering
when I was inside it."  So they called out to Brother Lustig that he was
to go away again, for he should not get in there! "If they won't have me
here," thought he, "I will see if I can find a place for myself in heaven,
for I must be somewhere." So he turned about and went onwards until he
came to the door of Heaven, where he knocked. St. Peter was sitting hard
by as door-keeper. Brother Lustig recognised him at once, and thought,
"Here I find an old friend, I shall get on better." But St. Peter said,
"I really believe that thou wantest to come into Heaven." "Let me in,
brother; I must get in somewhere; if they would have taken me into
Hell, I should not have come here." "No," said St. Peter, "thou shalt
not enter." "Then if thou wilt not let me in, take thy knapsack back,
for I will have nothing at all from thee." "Give it here, then," said
St. Peter. Then Brother Lustig gave him the knapsack into Heaven through
the bars, and St. Peter took it, and hung it beside his seat. Then said
Brother Lustig, "And now I wish myself inside my knapsack," and in a
second he was in it, and in Heaven, and St. Peter was forced to let him
stay there.



82 Gambling Hansel

Once upon a time there was a man who did nothing but gamble, and for
that reason people never called him anything but Gambling Hansel, and
as he never ceased to gamble, he played away his house and all that he
had. Now the very day before his creditors were to take his house from
him, came the Lord and St.  Peter, and asked him to give them shelter
for the night. Then Gambling Hansel said, "For my part, you may stay
the night, but I cannot give you a bed or anything to eat." So the Lord
said he was just to take them in, and they themselves would buy something
to eat, to which Gambling Hansel made no objection. Thereupon St. Peter
gave him three groschen, and said he was to go to the baker's and fetch
some bread. So Gambling Hansel went, but when he reached the house where
the other gambling vagabonds were gathered together, they, although they
had won all that he had, greeted him clamorously, and said, "Hansel, do
come in." "Oh," said he, "do you want to win the three groschen too?" On
this they would not let him go. So he went in, and played away the three
groschen also. Meanwhile St. Peter and the Lord were waiting, and as he
was so long in coming, they set out to meet him. When Gambling Hansel
came, however, he pretended that the money had fallen into the gutter,
and kept raking about in it all the while to find it, but our Lord already
knew that he had lost it in play. St. Peter again gave him three groschen,
and now he did not allow himself to be led away once more, but fetched
them the loaf. Our Lord then inquired if he had no wine, and he said,
"Alack, sir, the casks are all empty!" But the Lord said he was to go
down into the cellar, for the best wine was still there. For a long time
he would not believe this, but at length he said, "Well, I will go down,
but I know that there is none there." When he turned the tap, however,
lo and behold, the best of wine ran out! So he took it to them, and the
two passed the night there. Early next day our Lord told Gambling Hansel
that he might beg three favours. The Lord expected that he would ask to
go to Heaven; but Gambling Hansel asked for a pack of cards with which
he could win everything, for dice with which he would win everything,
and for a tree whereon every kind of fruit would grow, and from which
no one who had climbed up, could descend until he bade him do so. The
Lord gave him all that he had asked, and departed with St. Peter.

And now Gambling Hansel at once set about gambling in real earnest,
and before long he had gained half the world. Upon this St. Peter said
to the Lord, "Lord, this thing must not go on, he will win, and thou
lose, the whole world. We must send Death to him." When Death appeared,
Gambling Hansel had just seated himself at the gaming-table, and Death
said, "Hansel, come out a while."  But Gambling Hansel said, "Just wait
a little until the game is done, and in the meantime get up into that
tree out there, and gather a little fruit that we may have something
to munch on our way." Thereupon Death climbed up, but when he wanted
to come down again, he could not, and Gambling Hansel left him up there
for seven years, during which time no one died.

So St. Peter said to the Lord, "Lord, this thing must not go on. People
no longer die; we must go ourselves." And they went themselves, and the
Lord commanded Hansel to let Death come down. So Hansel went at once
to Death and said to him, "Come down," and Death took him directly and
put an end to him. They went away together and came to the next world,
and then Gambling Hansel made straight for the door of Heaven, and
knocked at it. "Who is there?"  "Gambling Hansel." "Ah, we will have
nothing to do with him! Begone!" So he went to the door of Purgatory,
and knocked once more. "Who is there?"  "Gambling Hansel." "Ah, there
is quite enough weeping and wailing here without him. We do not want to
gamble, just go away again." Then he went to the door of Hell, and there
they let him in. There was, however, no one at home but old Lucifer
and the crooked devils who had just been doing their evil work in the
world. And no sooner was Hansel there than he sat down to gamble again.
Lucifer, however, had nothing to lose, but his mis-shapen devils, and
Gambling Hansel won them from him, as with his cards he could not fail
to do. And now he was off again with his crooked devils, and they went
to Hohenfuert and pulled up a hop-pole, and with it went to Heaven and
began to thrust the pole against it, and Heaven began to crack. So again
St. Peter said, "Lord, this thing cannot go on, we must let him in, or
he will throw us down from Heaven." And they let him in. But Gambling
Hansel instantly began to play again, and there was such a noise and
confusion that there was no hearing what they themselves were saying.
Therefore St. Peter once more said, "Lord, this cannot go on, we must
throw him down, or he will make all Heaven rebellious." So they went
to him at once, and threw him down, and his soul broke into fragments,
and went into the gambling vagabonds who are living this very day.



83 Hans in Luck

Hans had served his master for seven years, so he said to him, "Master,
my time is up; now I should be glad to go back home to my mother; give
me my wages."  The master answered, "You have served me faithfully and
honestly; as the service was so shall the reward be;" and he gave Hans
a piece of gold as big as his head. Hans pulled his handkerchief out of
his pocket, wrapped up the lump in it, put it on his shoulder, and set
out on the way home.

As he went on, always putting one foot before the other, he saw a horseman
trotting quickly and merrily by on a lively horse. "Ah!" said Hans quite
loud, "what a fine thing it is to ride! There you sit as on a chair;
you stumble over no stones, you save your shoes, and get on, you don't
know how."

The rider, who had heard him, stopped and called out, "Hollo! Hans,
why do you go on foot, then?"

"I must," answered he, "for I have this lump to carry home; it is true
that it is gold, but I cannot hold my head straight for it, and it hurts
my shoulder."

"I will tell you what," said the rider, "we will exchange: I will give
you my horse, and you can give me your lump."

"With all my heart," said Hans, "but I can tell you, you will have to
crawl along with it."

The rider got down, took the gold, and helped Hans up; then gave him the
bridle tight in his hands and said, "If you want to go at a really good
pace, you must click your tongue and call out, "Jup! Jup!"

Hans was heartily delighted as he sat upon the horse and rode away so bold
and free. After a little while he thought that it ought to go faster,
and he began to click with his tongue and call out, "Jup! Jup!" The
horse put himself into a sharp trot, and before Hans knew where he was,
he was thrown off and lying in a ditch which separated the field from the
highway. The horse would have gone off too if it had not been stopped by
a countryman, who was coming along the road and driving a cow before him.

Hans got his limbs together and stood up on his legs again, but he was
vexed, and said to the countryman, "It is a poor joke, this riding,
especially when one gets hold of a mare like this, that kicks and throws
one off, so that one has a chance of breaking one's neck. Never again
will I mount it. Now I like your cow, for one can walk quietly behind
her, and have, over and above, one's milk, butter and cheese every day
without fail. What would I not give to have such a cow." "Well," said
the countryman, "if it would give you so much pleasure, I do not mind
giving the cow for the horse." Hans agreed with the greatest delight;
the countryman jumped upon the horse, and rode quickly away.

Hans drove his cow quietly before him, and thought over his lucky
bargain. "If only I have a morsel of bread---and that can hardly fail
me---I can eat butter and cheese with it as often as I like; if I am
thirsty, I can milk my cow and drink the milk. Good heart, what more
can I want?"

When he came to an inn he made a halt, and in his great content ate up
what he had with him---his dinner and supper---and all he had, and with
his last few farthings had half a glass of beer. Then he drove his cow
onwards along the road to his mother's village.

As it drew nearer mid-day, the heat was more oppressive, and Hans found
himself upon a moor which it took about an hour to cross. He felt it
very hot and his tongue clave to the roof of his mouth with thirst. "I
can find a cure for this," thought Hans; "I will milk the cow now and
refresh myself with the milk." He tied her to a withered tree, and as
he had no pail he put his leather cap underneath; but try as he would,
not a drop of milk came. And as he set himself to work in a clumsy way,
the impatient beast at last gave him such a blow on his head with its
hind foot, that he fell on the ground, and for a long time could not
think where he was.

By good fortune a butcher just then came along the road with a
wheel-barrow, in which lay a young pig. "What sort of a trick is
this?" cried he, and helped the good Hans up. Hans told him what had
happened. The butcher gave him his flask and said, "Take a drink and
refresh yourself. The cow will certainly give no milk, it is an old beast;
at the best it is only fit for the plough, or for the butcher."  "Well,
well," said Hans, as he stroked his hair down on his head, "who would
have thought it? Certainly it is a fine thing when one can kill a beast
like that at home; what meat one has! But I do not care much for beef,
it is not juicy enough for me. A young pig like that now is the thing
to have, it tastes quite different; and then there are the sausages!"

"Hark ye, Hans," said the butcher, "out of love for you I will exchange,
and will let you have the pig for the cow." "Heaven repay you for your
kindness!" said Hans as he gave up the cow, whilst the pig was unbound
from the barrow, and the cord by which it was tied was put in his hand.

Hans went on, and thought to himself how everything was going just
as he wished; if he did meet with any vexation it was immediately
set right. Presently there joined him a lad who was carrying a fine
white goose under his arm. They said good morning to each other,
and Hans began to tell of his good luck, and how he had always made
such good bargains. The boy told him that he was taking the goose to a
christening-feast. "Just lift her," added he, and laid hold of her by the
wings; "how heavy she is---she has been fattened up for the last eight
weeks. Whoever has a bit of her when she is roasted will have to wipe
the fat from both sides of his mouth." "Yes," said Hans, as he weighed
her in one hand, "she is a good weight, but my pig is no bad one."

Meanwhile the lad looked suspiciously from one side to the other,
and shook his head. "Look here," he said at length, "it may not be all
right with your pig. In the village through which I passed, the Mayor
himself had just had one stolen out of its sty. I fear---I fear that you
have got hold of it there. They have sent out some people and it would
be a bad business if they caught you with the pig; at the very least,
you would be shut up in the dark hole."

The good Hans was terrified. "Goodness!" he said, "help me out of this
fix; you know more about this place than I do, take my pig and leave me
your goose." "I shall risk something at that game," answered the lad,
"but I will not be the cause of your getting into trouble." So he took
the cord in his hand, and drove away the pig quickly along a by-path.

The good Hans, free from care, went homewards with the goose under
his arm.  "When I think over it properly," said he to himself, "I have
even gained by the exchange; first there is the good roast-meat, then
the quantity of fat which will drip from it, and which will give me
dripping for my bread for a quarter of a year, and lastly the beautiful
white feathers; I will have my pillow stuffed with them, and then indeed
I shall go to sleep without rocking. How glad my mother will be!"

As he was going through the last village, there stood a scissors-grinder
with his barrow; as his wheel whirred he sang---


 "I sharpen scissors and quickly grind,
 My coat blows out in the wind behind."

Hans stood still and looked at him; at last he spoke to him and said,
"All's well with you, as you are so merry with your grinding." "Yes,"
answered the scissors-grinder, "the trade has a golden foundation. A
real grinder is a man who as often as he puts his hand into his pocket
finds gold in it. But where did you buy that fine goose?"

"I did not buy it, but exchanged my pig for it."

"And the pig?"

"That I got for a cow."

"And the cow?"

"I took that instead of a horse."

"And the horse?"

"For that I gave a lump of gold as big as my head."

"And the gold?"

"Well, that was my wages for seven years' service."

"You have known how to look after yourself each time," said the
grinder. "If you can only get on so far as to hear the money jingle in
your pocket whenever you stand up, you will have made your fortune."

"How shall I manage that?" said Hans. "You must be a grinder, as I am;
nothing particular is wanted for it but a grindstone, the rest finds
itself. I have one here; it is certainly a little worn, but you need
not give me anything for it but your goose; will you do it?"

"How can you ask?" answered Hans. "I shall be the luckiest fellow on
earth; if I have money whenever I put my hand in my pocket, what need
I trouble about any longer?" and he handed him the goose and received
the grindstone in exchange. "Now," said the grinder, as he took up an
ordinary heavy stone that lay by him, "here is a strong stone for you
into the bargain; you can hammer well upon it, and straighten your old
nails. Take it with you and keep it carefully."

Hans loaded himself with the stones, and went on with a contented heart;
his eyes shone with joy. "I must have been born with a caul," he cried;
"everything I want happens to me just as if I were a Sunday-child."

Meanwhile, as he had been on his legs since daybreak, he began to feel
tired.  Hunger also tormented him, for in his joy at the bargain by which
he got the cow he had eaten up all his store of food at once. At last
he could only go on with great trouble, and was forced to stop every
minute; the stones, too, weighed him down dreadfully. Then he could not
help thinking how nice it would be if he had not to carry them just then.

He crept like a snail to a well in a field, and there he thought that
he would rest and refresh himself with a cool draught of water, but in
order that he might not injure the stones in sitting down, he laid them
carefully by his side on the edge of the well. Then he sat down on it, and
was to stoop and drink, when he made a slip, pushed against the stones,
and both of them fell into the water. When Hans saw them with his own
eyes sinking to the bottom, he jumped for joy, and then knelt down, and
with tears in his eyes thanked God for having shown him this favour also,
and delivered him in so good a way, and without his having any need to
reproach himself, from those heavy stones which had been the only things
that troubled him.

"There is no man under the sun so fortunate as I," he cried out. With a
light heart and free from every burden he now ran on until he was with
his mother at home.



84 Hans Married

There was once upon a time a young peasant named Hans, whose uncle wanted
to find him a rich wife. He therefore seated Hans behind the stove, and
had it made very hot. Then he fetched a pot of milk and plenty of white
bread, gave him a bright newly-coined farthing in his hand, and said,
"Hans, hold that farthing fast, crumble the white bread into the milk,
and stay where you are, and do not stir from that spot till I come
back." "Yes," said Hans, "I will do all that." Then the wooer put on a
pair of old patched trousers, went to a rich peasant's daughter in the
next village, and said, "Won't you marry my nephew Hans---you will get an
honest and sensible man who will suit you?" The covetous father asked,
"How is it with regard to his means? Has he bread to break?" "Dear
friend," replied the wooer, "my young nephew has a snug berth, a nice
bit of money in hand, and plenty of bread to break, besides he has quite
as many patches as I have," (and as he spoke, he slapped the patches
on his trousers, but in that district small pieces of land were called
patches also.) "If you will give yourself the trouble to go home with me,
you shall see at once that all is as I have said." Then the miser did
not want to lose this good opportunity, and said, "If that is the case,
I have nothing further to say against the marriage."

So the wedding was celebrated on the appointed day, and when the young
wife went out of doors to see the bridegroom's property, Hans took off
his Sunday coat and put on his patched smock-frock and said, "I might
spoil my good coat."  Then together they went out and wherever a boundary
line came in sight, or fields and meadows were divided from each other,
Hans pointed with his finger and then slapped either a large or a small
patch on his smock-frock, and said, "That patch is mine, and that too,
my dearest, just look at it," meaning thereby that his wife should not
stare at the broad land, but look at his garment, which was his own.

"Were you indeed at the wedding?" "Yes, indeed I was there, and in
full dress.  My head-dress was of snow; then the sun came out, and it
was melted. My coat was of cobwebs, and I had to pass by some thorns
which tore it off me, my shoes were of glass, and I pushed against a
stone and they said, "Klink," and broke in two.



85 The Gold-Children

There was once a poor man and a poor woman who had nothing but a little
cottage, and who earned their bread by fishing, and always lived from
hand to mouth. But it came to pass one day when the man was sitting by
the water-side, and casting his net, that he drew out a fish entirely
of gold. As he was looking at the fish, full of astonishment, it began
to speak and said, "Hark you, fisherman, if you will throw me back
again into the water, I will change your little hut into a splendid
castle." Then the fisherman answered, "Of what use is a castle to me,
if I have nothing to eat?" The gold fish continued, "That shall be
taken care of, there will be a cupboard in the castle in which, when
you open it, shall be dishes of the most delicate meats, and as many
of them as you can desire." "If that be true," said the man, "then I
can well do you a favour." "Yes," said the fish, "there is, however,
the condition that you shall disclose to no one in the world, whosoever
he may be, whence your good luck has come, if you speak but one single
word, all will be over." Then the man threw the wonderful fish back
again into the water, and went home. But where his hovel had formerly
stood, now stood a great castle. He opened wide his eyes, entered, and
saw his wife dressed in beautiful clothes, sitting in a splendid room,
and she was quite delighted, and said, "Husband, how has all this come
to pass? It suits me very well." "Yes," said the man, "it suits me too,
but I am frightfully hungry, just give me something to eat." Said the
wife, "But I have got nothing and don't know where to find anything
in this new house." "There is no need of your knowing," said the man,
"for I see yonder a great cupboard, just unlock it." When she opened it,
there stood cakes, meat, fruit, wine, quite a bright prospect.

Then the woman cried joyfully, "What more can you want, my dear?" and
they sat down, and ate and drank together. When they had had enough,
the woman said, "But husband, whence come all these riches?" "Alas,"
answered he, "do not question me about it, for I dare not tell you
anything; if I disclose it to any one, then all our good fortune will
fly." "Very good," said she, "if I am not to know anything, then I do
not want to know anything." However, she was not in earnest; she never
rested day or night, and she goaded her husband until in his impatience
he revealed that all was owing to a wonderful golden fish which he had
caught, and to which in return he had given its liberty. And as soon as
the secret was out, the splendid castle with the cupboard immediately
disappeared, they were once more in the old fisherman's hut, and the man
was obliged to follow his former trade and fish. But fortune would so
have it, that he once more drew out the golden fish. "Listen," said the
fish, "if you will throw me back into the water again, I will once more
give you the castle with the cupboard full of roast and boiled meats;
only be firm, for your life's sake don't reveal from whom you have it,
or you will lose it all again!" "I will take good care," answered the
fisherman, and threw the fish back into the water. Now at home everything
was once more in its former magnificence, and the wife was overjoyed
at their good fortune, but curiosity left her no peace, so that after a
couple of days she began to ask again how it had come to pass, and how
he had managed to secure it.  The man kept silence for a short time,
but at last she made him so angry that he broke out, and betrayed the
secret. In an instant the castle disappeared, and they were back again
in their old hut. "Now you have got what you want," said he; "and we can
gnaw at a bare bone again." "Ah," said the woman, "I had rather not have
riches if I am not to know from whom they come, for then I have no peace."

The man went back to fish, and after a while he chanced to draw out the
gold fish for a third time. "Listen," said the fish, "I see very well
that I am fated to fall into your hands, take me home and cut me into six
pieces; give your wife two of them to eat, two to your horse and bury
two of them in the ground, then they will bring you a blessing." The
fisherman took the fish home with him, and did as it had bidden him. It
came to pass, however, that from the two pieces that were buried in the
ground two golden lilies sprang up, that the horse had two golden foals,
and the fisherman's wife bore two children who were made entirely of
gold. The children grew up, became tall and handsome, and the lilies
and horses grew likewise. Then they said, "Father, we want to mount our
golden steeds and travel out in the world." But he answered sorrowfully,
"How shall I bear it if you go away, and I know not how it fares with
you?" Then they said, "The two golden lilies remain here. By them you
can see how it is with us; if they are fresh, then we are in health;
if they are withered, we are ill; if they perish, then we are dead." So
they rode forth and came to an inn, in which were many people, and when
they perceived the gold-children they began to laugh, and jeer. When one
of them heard the mocking he felt ashamed and would not go out into the
world, but turned back and went home again to his father. But the other
rode forward and reached a great forest. As he was about to enter it,
the people said, It is not safe for you to ride through, the wood is
full of robbers who would treat you badly. You will fare ill, and when
they see that you are all of gold, and your horse likewise, they will
assuredly kill you.'

But he would not allow himself to be frightened, and said, "I must and
will ride through it." Then he took bear-skins and covered himself and
his horse with them, so that the gold was no more to be seen, and rode
fearlessly into the forest. When he had ridden onward a little he heard
a rustling in the bushes, and heard voices speaking together. From one
side came cries of, "There is one," but from the other, "Let him go,
'tis an idle fellow, as poor and bare as a church-mouse, what should we
gain from him?"

So the gold-child rode joyfully through the forest, and no evil befell
him. One day he entered a village wherein he saw a maiden, who was
so beautiful that he did not believe that any more beautiful than she
existed in the world. And as such a mighty love took possession of him,
he went up to her and said, "I love thee with my whole heart, wilt thou be
my wife?" He, too, pleased the maiden so much that she agreed and said,
"Yes, I will be thy wife, and be true to thee my whole life long." Then
they were married, and just as they were in the greatest happiness,
home came the father of the bride, and when he saw that his daughter's
wedding was being celebrated, he was astonished, and said, "Where is the
bridegroom?" They showed him the gold-child, who, however, still wore his
bear-skins. Then the father said wrathfully, "A vagabond shall never have
my daughter!" and was about to kill him. Then the bride begged as hard
as she could, and said, "He is my husband, and I love him with all my
heart!" until at last he allowed himself to be appeased. Nevertheless the
idea never left his thoughts, so that next morning he rose early, wishing
to see whether his daughter's husband was a common ragged beggar. But
when he peeped in, he saw a magnificent golden man in the bed, and the
cast-off bear-skins lying on the ground. Then he went back and thought,
"What a good thing it was that I restrained my anger! I should have
committed a great crime." But the gold-child dreamed that he rode out
to hunt a splendid stag, and when he awoke in the morning, he said to
his wife, "I must go out hunting." She was uneasy, and begged him to
stay there, and said, "You might easily meet with a great misfortune,"
but he answered, "I must and will go."

Thereupon he got up, and rode forth into the forest, and it was not long
before a fine stag crossed his path exactly according to his dream. He
aimed and was about to shoot it, when the stag ran away. He gave chase
over hedges and ditches for the whole day without feeling tired, but in
the evening the stag vanished from his sight, and when the gold-child
looked round him, he was standing before a little house, wherein
was a witch. He knocked, and a little old woman came out and asked,
"What are you doing so late in the midst of the great forest?" "Have
you not seen a stag?" "Yes," answered she, "I know the stag well," and
thereupon a little dog which had come out of the house with her, barked
at the man violently. "Wilt thou be silent, thou odious toad," said he,
"or I will shoot thee dead." Then the witch cried out in a passion,
"What! will you slay my little dog?" and immediately transformed him, so
that he lay like a stone, and his bride awaited him in vain and thought,
"That which I so greatly dreaded, which lay so heavily on my heart,
has come upon him!" But at home the other brother was standing by the
gold-lilies, when one of them suddenly drooped.  "Good heavens!" said he,
"my brother has met with some great misfortune! I must away to see if
I can possibly rescue him." Then the father said, "Stay here, if I lose
you also, what shall I do?" But he answered, "I must and will go forth!"

Then he mounted his golden horse, and rode forth and entered the great
forest, where his brother lay turned to stone. The old witch came out of
her house and called him, wishing to entrap him also, but he did not go
near her, and said, "I will shoot you, if you will not bring my brother
to life again." She touched the stone, though very unwillingly, with her
forefinger, and he was immediately restored to his human shape. But the
two gold-children rejoiced when they saw each other again, kissed and
caressed each other, and rode away together out of the forest, the one
home to his bride, and the other to his father. The father then said,
"I knew well that you had rescued your brother, for the golden lily
suddenly rose up and blossomed out again." Then they lived happily,
and all prospered with them until their death.



86 The Fox and the Geese

The fox once came to a meadow in which was a flock of fine fat geese, on
which he smiled and said, "I come in the nick of time, you are sitting
together quite beautifully, so that I can eat you up one after the
other." The geese cackled with terror, sprang up, and began to wail and
beg piteously for their lives. But the fox would listen to nothing, and
said, "There is no mercy to be had! You must die."  At length one of them
took heart and said, "If we poor geese are to yield up our vigorous young
lives, show us the only possible favour and allow us one more prayer,
that we may not die in our sins, and then we will place ourselves in
a row, so that you can always pick yourself out the fattest." "Yes,"
said the fox, "that is reasonable, and a pious request. Pray away, I
will wait till you are done."  Then the first began a good long prayer,
for ever saying, "Ga! Ga!" and as she would make no end, the second did
not wait until her turn came, but began also, "Ga! Ga!" The third and
fourth followed her, and soon they were all cackling together.

When they have done praying, the story shall be continued further,
but at present they are still praying without stopping."



87 The Poor Man and the Rich Man

In olden times, when the Lord himself still used to walk about on this
earth amongst men, it once happened that he was tired and overtaken by
the darkness before he could reach an inn. Now there stood on the road
before him two houses facing each other; the one large and beautiful,
the other small and poor. The large one belonged to a rich man, and the
small one to a poor man.

Then the Lord thought, "I shall be no burden to the rich man, I will stay
the night with him." When the rich man heard some one knocking at his
door, he opened the window and asked the stranger what he wanted. The
Lord answered, "I only ask for a night's lodging."

Then the rich man looked at the traveler from head to foot, and as the
Lord was wearing common clothes, and did not look like one who had much
money in his pocket, he shook his head, and said, "No, I cannot take you
in, my rooms are full of herbs and seeds; and if I were to lodge everyone
who knocked at my door, I might very soon go begging myself. Go somewhere
else for a lodging," and with this he shut down the window and left the
Lord standing there.

So the Lord turned his back on the rich man, and went across to the
small house and knocked. He had hardly done so when the poor man opened
the little door and bade the traveler come in. "Pass the night with me,
it is already dark," said he; "you cannot go any further to-night." This
pleased the Lord, and he went in. The poor man's wife shook hands with
him, and welcomed him, and said he was to make himself at home and put
up with what they had got; they had not much to offer him, but what they
had they would give him with all their hearts. Then she put the potatoes
on the fire, and while they were boiling, she milked the goat, that they
might have a little milk with them. When the cloth was laid, the Lord
sat down with the man and his wife, and he enjoyed their coarse food,
for there were happy faces at the table. When they had had supper and
it was bed-time, the woman called her husband apart and said, "Hark you,
dear husband, let us make up a bed of straw for ourselves to-night, and
then the poor traveler can sleep in our bed and have a good rest, for he
has been walking the whole day through, and that makes one weary." "With
all my heart," he answered, "I will go and offer it to him;" and he
went to the stranger and invited him, if he had no objection, to sleep
in their bed and rest his limbs properly. But the Lord was unwilling
to take their bed from the two old folks; however, they would not be
satisfied, until at length he did it and lay down in their bed, while
they themselves lay on some straw on the ground.

Next morning they got up before daybreak, and made as good a breakfast as
they could for the guest. When the sun shone in through the little window,
and the Lord had got up, he again ate with them, and then prepared to
set out on his journey.

But as he was standing at the door he turned round and said, "As you
are so kind and good, you may wish three things for yourselves and I
will grant them."  Then the man said, "What else should I wish for but
eternal happiness, and that we two, as long as we live, may be healthy
and have every day our daily bread; for the third wish, I do not know
what to have." And the Lord said to him, "Will you wish for a new house
instead of this old one?" "Oh, yes," said the man; "if I can have that,
too, I should like it very much." And the Lord fulfilled his wish, and
changed their old house into a new one, again gave them his blessing,
and went on.

The sun was high when the rich man got up and leaned out of his window
and saw, on the opposite side of the way, a new clean-looking house with
red tiles and bright windows where the old hut used to be. He was very
much astonished, and called his wife and said to her, "Tell me, what
can have happened? Last night there was a miserable little hut standing
there, and to-day there is a beautiful new house. Run over and see how
that has come to pass."

So his wife went and asked the poor man, and he said to her, "Yesterday
evening a traveler came here and asked for a night's lodging, and this
morning when he took leave of us he granted us three wishes---eternal
happiness, health during this life and our daily bread as well, and
besides this, a beautiful new house instead of our old hut."

When the rich man's wife heard this, she ran back in haste and told
her husband how it had happened. The man said, "I could tear myself to
pieces! If I had but known that! That traveler came to our house too,
and wanted to sleep here, and I sent him away." "Quick!" said his wife,
"get on your horse. You can still catch the man up, and then you must
ask to have three wishes granted to you."

The rich man followed the good counsel and galloped away on his horse,
and soon came up with the Lord. He spoke to him softly and pleasantly,
and begged him not to take it amiss that he had not let him in directly;
he was looking for the front-door key, and in the meantime the stranger
had gone away, if he returned the same way he must come and stay
with him. "Yes," said the Lord; "if I ever come back again, I will do
so." Then the rich man asked if might not wish for three things too,
as his neighbor had done? "Yes," said the Lord, he might, but it would
not be to his advantage, and he had better not wish for anything; but the
rich man thought that he could easily ask for something which would add
to his happiness, if he only knew that it would be granted. So the Lord
said to him, "Ride home, then, and three wishes which you shall form,
shall be fulfilled."

The rich man had now gained what he wanted, so he rode home, and began
to consider what he should wish for. As he was thus thinking he let
the bridle fall, and the horse began to caper about, so that he was
continually disturbed in his meditations, and could not collect his
thoughts at all. He patted its neck, and said, "Gently, Lisa," but the
horse only began new tricks. Then at last he was angry, and cried quite
impatiently, "I wish your neck was broken!" Directly he had said the
words, down the horse fell on the ground, and there it lay dead and never
moved again. And thus was his first wish fulfilled. As he was miserly
by nature, he did not like to leave the harness lying there; so he cut
it off, and put it on his back; and now he had to go on foot. "I have
still two wishes left," said he, and comforted himself with that thought.

And now as he was walking slowly through the sand, and the sun was burning
hot at noon-day, he grew quite hot-tempered and angry. The saddle hurt
his back, and he had not yet any idea what to wish for. "If I were to
wish for all the riches and treasures in the world," said he to himself,
"I should still to think of all kinds of other things later on, I know
that, beforehand. But I will manage so that there is nothing at all left
me to wish for afterwards." Then he sighed and said, "Ah, if I were but
that Bavarian peasant, who likewise had three wishes granted to him,
and knew quite well what to do, and in the first place wished for a great
deal of beer, and in the second for as much beer as he was able to drink,
and in the third for a barrel of beer into the bargain."

Many a time he thought he had found it, but then it seemed to him to be,
after all, too little. Then it came into his mind, what an easy life his
wife had, for she stayed at home in a cool room and enjoyed herself. This
really did vex him, and before he was aware, he said, "I just wish she
was sitting there on this saddle, and could not get off it, instead of
my having to drag it along on my back." And as the last word was spoken,
the saddle disappeared from his back, and he saw that his second wish
had been fulfilled. Then he really did feel warm. He began to run and
wanted to be quite alone in his own room at home, to think of something
really large for his last wish. But when he arrived there and opened the
parlour-door, he saw his wife sitting in the middle of the room on the
saddle, crying and complaining, and quite unable to get off it. So he
said, "Do bear it, and I will wish for all the riches on earth for thee,
only stay where thou art." She, however, called him a fool, and said,
"What good will all the riches on earth do me, if I am to sit on this
saddle? Thou hast wished me on it, so thou must help me off." So whether
he would or not, he was forced to let his third wish be that she should
be quit of the saddle, and able to get off it, and immediately the wish
was fulfilled. So he got nothing by it but vexation, trouble, abuse,
and the loss of his horse; but the poor people lived happily, quietly,
and piously until their happy death.



88 The Singing, Springing Lark

There was once on a time a man who was about to set out on a long journey,
and on parting he asked his three daughters what he should bring back with
him for them. Whereupon the eldest wished for pearls, the second wished
for diamonds, but the third said, "Dear father, I should like a singing,
soaring lark."  The father said, "Yes, if I can get it, you shall have
it," kissed all three, and set out. Now when the time had come for him
to be on his way home again, he had brought pearls and diamonds for the
two eldest, but he had sought everywhere in vain for a singing, soaring
lark for the youngest, and he was very unhappy about it, for she was his
favorite child. Then his road lay through a forest, and in the midst of
it was a splendid castle, and near the castle stood a tree, but quite
on the top of the tree, he saw a singing, soaring lark. "Aha, you come
just at the right moment!" he said, quite delighted, and called to his
servant to climb up and catch the little creature. But as he approached
the tree, a lion leapt from beneath it, shook himself, and roared till the
leaves on the trees trembled. "He who tries to steal my singing, soaring
lark," he cried, "will I devour." Then the man said, "I did not know
that the bird belonged to thee. I will make amends for the wrong I have
done and ransom myself with a large sum of money, only spare my life."
The lion said, "Nothing can save thee, unless thou wilt promise to give
me for mine own what first meets thee on thy return home; and if thou
wilt do that, I will grant thee thy life, and thou shalt have the bird
for thy daughter, into the bargain."  But the man hesitated and said,
"That might be my youngest daughter, she loves me best, and always runs to
meet me on my return home." The servant, however, was terrified and said,
"Why should your daughter be the very one to meet you, it might as easily
be a cat, or dog?" Then the man allowed himself to be over-persuaded,
took the singing, soaring lark, and promised to give the lion whatsoever
should first meet him on his return home.

When he reached home and entered his house, the first who met him was
no other than his youngest and dearest daughter, who came running up,
kissed and embraced him, and when she saw that he had brought with him
a singing, soaring lark, she was beside herself with joy. The father,
however, could not rejoice, but began to weep, and said, "My dearest
child, I have bought the little bird dear. In return for it, I have
been obliged to promise thee to a savage lion, and when he has thee he
will tear thee in pieces and devour thee," and he told her all, just as
it had happened, and begged her not to go there, come what might. But
she consoled him and said, "Dearest father, indeed your promise must be
fulfilled. I will go thither and soften the lion, so that I may return
to thee safely." Next morning she had the road pointed out to her, took
leave, and went fearlessly out into the forest. The lion, however, was
an enchanted prince and was by day a lion, and all his people were lions
with him, but in the night they resumed their natural human shapes. On
her arrival she was kindly received and led into the castle. When
night came, the lion turned into a handsome man, and their wedding
was celebrated with great magnificence. They lived happily together,
remained awake at night, and slept in the daytime. One day he came and
said, "To-morrow there is a feast in thy father's house, because your
eldest sister is to be married, and if thou art inclined to go there,
my lions shall conduct thee." She said, "Yes, I should very much like to
see my father again," and went thither, accompanied by the lions. There
was great joy when she arrived, for they had all believed that she had
been torn in pieces by the lion, and had long ceased to live.  But she
told them what a handsome husband she had, and how well off she was,
remained with them while the wedding-feast lasted, and then went back
again to the forest. When the second daughter was about to be married,
and she was again invited to the wedding, she said to the lion, "This
time I will not be alone, thou must come with me." The lion, however,
said that it was too dangerous for him, for if when there a ray from
a burning candle fell on him, he would be changed into a dove, and for
seven years long would have to fly about with the doves. She said, "Ah,
but do come with me, I will take great care of thee, and guard thee from
all light." So they went away together, and took with them their little
child as well. She had a chamber built there, so strong and thick that no
ray could pierce through it; in this he was to shut himself up when the
candles were lit for the wedding-feast. But the door was made of green
wood which warped and left a little crack which no one noticed. The
wedding was celebrated with magnificence, but when the procession with
all its candles and torches came back from church, and passed by this
apartment, a ray about the breadth of a hair fell on the King's son, and
when this ray touched him, he was transformed in an instant, and when
she came in and looked for him, she did not see him, but a white dove was
sitting there. The dove said to her, "For seven years must I fly about the
world, but at every seventh step that you take I will let fall a drop of
red blood and a white feather, and these will show thee the way, and if
thou followest the trace thou canst release me." Thereupon the dove flew
out at the door, and she followed him, and at every seventh step a red
drop of blood and a little white feather fell down and showed her the way.

So she went continually further and further in the wide world, never
looking about her or resting, and the seven years were almost past; then
she rejoiced and thought that they would soon be delivered, and yet they
were so far from it!  Once when they were thus moving onwards, no little
feather and no drop of red blood fell, and when she raised her eyes the
dove had disappeared. And as she thought to herself, "In this no man can
help thee," she climbed up to the sun, and said to him, "Thou shinest
into every crevice, and over every peak, hast thou not seen a white dove
flying?" "No," said the sun, "I have seen none, but I present thee with a
casket, open it when thou art in sorest need." Then she thanked the sun,
and went on until evening came and the moon appeared; she then asked her,
"Thou shinest the whole night through, and on every field and forest,
hast thou not seen a white dove flying?" "No," said the moon, "I have
seen no dove, but here I give thee an egg, break it when thou art in
great need." She thanked the moon, and went on until the night wind came
up and blew on her, then she said to it, "Thou blowest over every tree
and under every leaf, hast thou not seen a white dove flying?" "No," said
the night wind, "I have seen none, but I will ask the three other winds,
perhaps they have seen it." The east wind and the west wind came, and had
seen nothing, but the south wind said, "I have seen the white dove, it
has flown to the Red Sea, where it has become a lion again, for the seven
years are over, and the lion is there fighting with a dragon; the dragon,
however, is an enchanted princess." The night wind then said to her,
"I will advise thee; go to the Red Sea, on the right bank are some tall
reeds, count them, break off the eleventh, and strike the dragon with
it, then the lion will be able to subdue it, and both then will regain
their human form. After that, look round and thou wilt see the griffin
which is by the Red Sea; swing thyself, with thy beloved, on to his back,
and the bird will carry you over the sea to your own home. Here is a nut
for thee, when thou are above the center of the sea, let the nut fall,
it will immediately shoot up, and a tall nut-tree will grow out of the
water on which the griffin may rest; for if he cannot rest, he will not
be strong enough to carry you across, and if thou forgettest to throw
down the nut, he will let you fall into the sea."

Then she went thither, and found everything as the night wind had
said. She counted the reeds by the sea, and cut off the eleventh, struck
the dragon therewith, whereupon the lion overcame it, and immediately
both of them regained their human shapes. But when the princess, who
had before been the dragon, was delivered from enchantment, she took the
youth by the arm, seated herself on the griffin, and carried him off with
her. There stood the poor maiden who had wandered so far and was again
forsaken. She sat down and cried, but at last she took courage and said,
"Still I will go as far as the wind blows and as long as the cock crows,
until I find him," and she went forth by long, long roads, until at
last she came to the castle where both of them were living together;
there she heard that soon a feast was to be held, in which they would
celebrate their wedding, but she said, "God still helps me," and opened
the casket that the sun had given her. A dress lay therein as brilliant
as the sun itself. So she took it out and put it on, and went up into
the castle, and everyone, even the bride herself, looked at her with
astonishment. The dress pleased the bride so well that she thought it
might do for her wedding-dress, and asked if it was for sale? "Not for
money or land," answered she, "but for flesh and blood." The bride asked
her what she meant by that, so she said, "Let me sleep a night in the
chamber where the bridegroom sleeps." The bride would not, yet wanted
very much to have the dress; at last she consented, but the page was
to give the prince a sleeping-draught. When it was night, therefore,
and the youth was already asleep, she was led into the chamber; she
seated herself on the bed and said, "I have followed after thee for
seven years. I have been to the sun and the moon, and the four winds,
and have enquired for thee, and have helped thee against the dragon;
wilt thou, then quite forget me?" But the prince slept so soundly that
it only seemed to him as if the wind were whistling outside in the
fir-trees. When therefore day broke, she was led out again, and had
to give up the golden dress.  And as that even had been of no avail,
she was sad, went out into a meadow, sat down there, and wept. While she
was sitting there, she thought of the egg which the moon had given her;
she opened it, and there came out a clucking hen with twelve chickens
all of gold, and they ran about chirping, and crept again under the old
hen's wings; nothing more beautiful was ever seen in the world! Then
she arose, and drove them through the meadow before her, until the bride
looked out of the window. The little chickens pleased her so much that
she immediately came down and asked if they were for sale. "Not for
money or land, but for flesh and blood; let me sleep another night
in the chamber where the bridegroom sleeps." The bride said, "Yes,"
intending to cheat her as on the former evening.  But when the prince
went to bed he asked the page what the murmuring and rustling in the
night had been? On this the page told all; that he had been forced to
give him a sleeping-draught, because a poor girl had slept secretly in
the chamber, and that he was to give him another that night. The prince
said, "Pour out the draught by the bed-side." At night, she was again
led in, and when she began to relate how ill all had fared with her,
he immediately recognized his beloved wife by her voice, sprang up and
cried, "Now I really am released! I have been as it were in a dream,
for the strange princess has bewitched me so that I have been compelled
to forget thee, but God has delivered me from the spell at the right
time." Then they both left the castle secretly in the night, for they
feared the father of the princess, who was a sorcerer, and they seated
themselves on the griffin which bore them across the Red Sea, and when
they were in the midst of it, she let fall the nut. Immediately a tall
nut-tree grew up, whereon the bird rested, and then carried them home,
where they found their child, who had grown tall and beautiful, and they
lived thenceforth happily until their death.



89 The Goose-Girl

THERE was once upon a time an old Queen whose husband had been dead for
many years, and she had a beautiful daughter. When the princess grew up
she was betrothed to a prince who lived at a great distance. When the time
came for her to be married, and she had to journey forth into the distant
kingdom, the aged Queen packed up for her many costly vessels of silver
and gold, and trinkets also of gold and silver; and cups and jewels,
in short, everything which appertained to a royal dowry, for she loved
her child with all her heart. She likewise sent her maid in waiting, who
was to ride with her, and hand her over to the bridegroom, and each had
a horse for the journey, but the horse of the King's daughter was called
Falada, and could speak. So when the hour of parting had come, the aged
mother went into her bedroom, took a small knife and cut her finger with
it until it bled, then she held a white handkerchief to it into which she
let three drops of blood fall, gave it to her daughter and said, "Dear
child, preserve this carefully, it will be of service to you on your way."

So they took a sorrowful leave of each other; the princess put the piece
of cloth in her bosom, mounted her horse, and then went away to her
bridegroom. After she had ridden for a while she felt a burning thirst,
and said to her waiting-maid, "Dismount, and take my cup which thou
hast brought with thee for me, and get me some water from the stream,
for I should like to drink." "If you are thirsty," said the waiting-maid,
"get off your horse yourself, and lie down and drink out of the water,
I don't choose to be your servant." So in her great thirst the princess
alighted, bent down over the water in the stream and drank, and was not
allowed to drink out of the golden cup. Then she said, "Ah, Heaven!" and
the three drops of blood answered, "If thy mother knew, her heart would
break."  But the King's daughter was humble, said nothing, and mounted
her horse again.  She rode some miles further, but the day was warm,
the sun scorched her, and she was thirsty once more, and when they came
to a stream of water, she again cried to her waiting-maid, "Dismount,
and give me some water in my golden cup," for she had long ago forgotten
the girl's ill words. But the waiting-maid said still more haughtily,
"If you wish to drink, drink as you can, I don't choose to be your
maid." Then in her great thirst the King's daughter alighted, bent over
the flowing stream, wept and said, "Ah, Heaven!" and the drops of blood
again replied, "If thy mother knew this, her heart would break." And as
she was thus drinking and leaning right over the stream, the handkerchief
with the three drops of blood fell out of her bosom, and floated away
with the water without her observing it, so great was her trouble. The
waiting-maid, however, had seen it, and she rejoiced to think that she
had now power over the bride, for since the princess had lost the drops
of blood, she had become weak and powerless. So now when she wanted to
mount her horse again, the one that was called Falada, the waiting-maid
said, "Falada is more suitable for me, and my nag will do for thee"
and the princess had to be content with that. Then the waiting-maid,
with many hard words, bade the princess exchange her royal apparel for
her own shabby clothes; and at length she was compelled to swear by the
clear sky above her, that she would not say one word of this to any one
at the royal court, and if she had not taken this oath she would have
been killed on the spot. But Falada saw all this, and observed it well.

The waiting-maid now mounted Falada, and the true bride the bad horse,
and thus they traveled onwards, until at length they entered the royal
palace. There were great rejoicings over her arrival, and the prince
sprang forward to meet her, lifted the waiting-maid from her horse,
and thought she was his consort. She was conducted upstairs, but the
real princess was left standing below. Then the old King looked out
of the window and saw her standing in the courtyard, and how dainty
and delicate and beautiful she was, and instantly went to the royal
apartment, and asked the bride about the girl she had with her who
was standing down below in the courtyard, and who she was? "I picked
her up on my way for a companion; give the girl something to work at,
that she may not stand idle." But the old King had no work for her,
and knew of none, so he said, "I have a little boy who tends the geese,
she may help him." The boy was called Conrad, and the true bride had to
help him to tend the geese. Soon afterwards the false bride said to the
young King, "Dearest husband, I beg you to do me a favour." He answered,
"I will do so most willingly." "Then send for the knacker, and have the
head of the horse on which I rode here cut off, for it vexed me on the
way." In reality, she was afraid that the horse might tell how she had
behaved to the King's daughter. Then she succeeded in making the King
promise that it should be done, and the faithful Falada was to die;
this came to the ears of the real princess, and she secretly promised to
pay the knacker a piece of gold if he would perform a small service for
her. There was a great dark-looking gateway in the town, through which
morning and evening she had to pass with the geese: would he be so good
as to nail up Falada's head on it, so that she might see him again, more
than once. The knacker's man promised to do that, and cut off the head,
and nailed it fast beneath the dark gateway.

Early in the morning, when she and Conrad drove out their flock beneath
this gateway, she said in passing,


 "Alas, Falada, hanging there!"

Then the head answered,


 "Alas, young Queen, how ill you fare!
 If this your tender mother knew,
 Her heart would surely break in two."

Then they went still further out of the town, and drove their geese
into the country. And when they had come to the meadow, she sat down and
unbound her hair which was like pure gold, and Conrad saw it and delighted
in its brightness, and wanted to pluck out a few hairs. Then she said,


 "Blow, blow, thou gentle wind, I say,
 Blow Conrad's little hat away,
 And make him chase it here and there,
 Until I have braided all my hair,
 And bound it up again."

And there came such a violent wind that it blew Conrad's hat far away
across country, and he was forced to run after it. When he came back she
had finished combing her hair and was putting it up again, and he could
not get any of it. Then Conrad was angry, and would not speak to her, and
thus they watched the geese until the evening, and then they went home.

Next day when they were driving the geese out through the dark gateway,
the maiden said,


 "Alas, Falada, hanging there!"

Falada answered,


 "Alas, young Queen, how ill you fare!
 If this your tender mother knew,
 Her heart would surely break in two."

And she sat down again in the field and began to comb out her hair,
and Conrad ran and tried to clutch it, so she said in haste,


 "Blow, blow, thou gentle wind, I say,
 Blow Conrad's little hat away,
 And make him chase it here and there,
 Until I have braided all my hair,
 And bound it up again."

Then the wind blew, and blew his little hat off his head and far away,
and Conrad was forced to run after it, and when he came back, her hair
had been put up a long time, and he could get none of it, and so they
looked after their geese till evening came.

But in the evening after they had got home, Conrad went to the old King,
and said, "I won't tend the geese with that girl any longer!" "Why
not?" inquired the aged King. "Oh, because she vexes me the whole day
long." Then the aged King commanded him to relate what it was that she
did to him. And Conrad said, "In the morning when we pass beneath the
dark gateway with the flock, there is a sorry horse's head on the wall,
and she says to it,


 "Alas, Falada, hanging there!"

And the head replies,


 "Alas, young Queen how ill you fare!
 If this your tender mother knew,
 Her heart would surely break in two."

And Conrad went on to relate what happened on the goose pasture, and
how when there he had to chase his hat.

The aged King commanded him to drive his flock out again next day, and
as soon as morning came, he placed himself behind the dark gateway, and
heard how the maiden spoke to the head of Falada, and then he too went
into the country, and hid himself in the thicket in the meadow. There
he soon saw with his own eyes the goose-girl and the goose-boy bringing
their flock, and how after a while she sat down and unplaited her hair,
which shone with radiance. And soon she said,


 "Blow, blow, thou gentle wind, I say,
 Blow Conrad's little hat away,
 And make him chase it here and there,
 Until I have braided all my hair,
 And bound it up again."

Then came a blast of wind and carried off Conrad's hat, so that he had to
run far away, while the maiden quietly went on combing and plaiting her
hair, all of which the King observed. Then, quite unseen, he went away,
and when the goose-girl came home in the evening, he called her aside,
and asked why she did all these things. "I may not tell you that, and I
dare not lament my sorrows to any human being, for I have sworn not to
do so by the heaven which is above me; if I had not done that, I should
have lost my life." He urged her and left her no peace, but he could draw
nothing from her. Then said he, "If thou wilt not tell me anything, tell
thy sorrows to the iron-stove there," and he went away. Then she crept
into the iron-stove, and began to weep and lament, and emptied her whole
heart, and said, "Here am I deserted by the whole world, and yet I am a
King's daughter, and a false waiting-maid has by force brought me to such
a pass that I have been compelled to put off my royal apparel, and she has
taken my place with my bridegroom, and I have to perform menial service
as a goose-girl. If my mother did but know that, her heart would break."

The aged King, however, was standing outside by the pipe of the stove,
and was listening to what she said, and heard it. Then he came back again,
and bade her come out of the stove. And royal garments were placed on
her, and it was marvellous how beautiful she was! The aged King summoned
his son, and revealed to him that he had got the false bride who was
only a waiting-maid, but that the true one was standing there, as the
sometime goose-girl. The young King rejoiced with all his heart when
he saw her beauty and youth, and a great feast was made ready to which
all the people and all good friends were invited. At the head of the
table sat the bridegroom with the King's daughter at one side of him,
and the waiting-maid on the other, but the waiting-maid was blinded,
and did not recognize the princess in her dazzling array. When they had
eaten and drunk, and were merry, the aged King asked the waiting-maid
as a riddle, what a person deserved who had behaved in such and such
a way to her master, and at the same time related the whole story,
and asked what sentence such an one merited? Then the false bride said,
"She deserves no better fate than to be stripped entirely naked, and put
in a barrel which is studded inside with pointed nails, and two white
horses should be harnessed to it, which will drag her along through one
street after another, till she is dead." "It is thou," said the aged King,
"and thou hast pronounced thine own sentence, and thus shall it be done
unto thee." And when the sentence had been carried out, the young King
married his true bride, and both of them reigned over their kingdom in
peace and happiness.



90 The Young Giant

Once on a time a countryman had a son who was as big as a thumb, and
did not become any bigger, and during several years did not grow one
hair's breadth.  Once when the father was going out to plough, the
little one said, "Father, I will go out with you." "Thou wouldst go
out with me?" said the father. "Stay here, thou wilt be of no use out
there, besides thou mightest get lost!" Then Thumbling began to cry,
and for the sake of peace his father put him in his pocket, and took
him with him. When he was outside in the field, he took him out again,
and set him in a freshly-cut furrow. Whilst he was there, a great giant
came over the hill.  "Do thou see that great bogie?" said the father, for
he wanted to frighten the little fellow to make him good; "he is coming
to fetch thee." The giant, however, had scarcely taken two steps with
his long legs before he was in the furrow. He took up little Thumbling
carefully with two fingers, examined him, and without saying one word
went away with him. His father stood by, but could not utter a sound
for terror, and he thought nothing else but that his child was lost,
and that as long as he lived he should never set eyes on him again.

The giant, however, carried him home, suckled him, and Thumbling grew
and became tall and strong after the manner of giants. When two years
had passed, the old giant took him into the forest, wanted to try him,
and said, "Pull up a stick for thyself." Then the boy was already so
strong that he tore up a young tree out of the earth by the roots. But
the giant thought, "We must do better than that," took him back again,
and suckled him two years longer. When he tried him, his strength had
increased so much that he could tear an old tree out of the ground.
That was still not enough for the giant; he again suckled him for
two years, and when he then went with him into the forest and said,
"Now just tear up a proper stick for me," the boy tore up the strongest
oak-tree from the earth, so that it split, and that was a mere trifle to
him. "Now that will do," said the giant, "thou art perfect," and took
him back to the field from whence he had brought him. His father was
there following the plough. The young giant went up to him, and said,
"Does my father see what a fine man his son has grown into?"

The farmer was alarmed, and said, "No, thou art not my son; I don't
want thee leave me!" "Truly I am your son; allow me to do your work,
I can plough as well as you, nay better." "No, no, thou art not my son;
and thou canst not plough go away!" However, as he was afraid of this
great man, he left go of the plough, stepped back and stood at one side
of the piece of land. Then the youth took the plough, and just pressed
it with one hand, but his grasp was so strong that the plough went deep
into the earth. The farmer could not bear to see that, and called to him,
"If thou art determined to plough, thou must not press so hard on it,
that makes bad work." The youth, however, unharnessed the horses,
and drew the plough himself, saying, "Just go home, father, and bid
my mother make ready a large dish of food, and in the meantime I will
go over the field." Then the farmer went home, and ordered his wife to
prepare the food; but the youth ploughed the field which was two acres
large, quite alone, and then he harnessed himself to the harrow, and
harrowed the whole of the land, using two harrows at once. When he had
done it, he went into the forest, and pulled up two oak-trees, laid them
across his shoulders, and hung on them one harrow behind and one before,
and also one horse behind and one before, and carried all as if it had
been a bundle of straw, to his parents' house. When he entered the yard,
his mother did not recognize him, and asked, "Who is that horrible tall
man?" The farmer said, "That is our son." She said, "No that cannot be
our son, we never had such a tall one, ours was a little thing." She
called to him, "Go away, we do not want thee!" The youth was silent,
but led his horses to the stable, gave them some oats and hay, and all
that they wanted. When he had done this, he went into the parlour, sat
down on the bench and said, "Mother, now I should like something to eat,
will it soon be ready?" Then she said, "Yes," and brought in two immense
dishes full of food, which would have been enough to satisfy herself and
her husband for a week. The youth, however, ate the whole of it himself,
and asked if she had nothing more to set before him. "No," she replied,
"that is all we have." "But that was only a taste, I must have more." She
did not dare to oppose him, and went and put a huge caldron full of food
on the fire, and when it was ready, carried it in. "At length come a few
crumbs," said he, and ate all there was, but it was still not sufficient
to appease his hunger. Then said he, "Father, I see well that with you I
shall never have food enough; if you will get me an iron staff which is
strong, and which I cannot break against my knees, I will go out into
the world." The farmer was glad, put his two horses in his cart, and
fetched from the smith a staff so large and thick, that the two horses
could only just bring it away. The youth laid it across his knees, and
snap! he broke it in two in the middle like a bean-stalk, and threw it
away. The father then harnessed four horses, and brought a bar which was
so long and thick, that the four horses could only just drag it. The son
snapped this also in twain against his knees, threw it away, and said,
"Father, this can be of no use to me, you must harness more horses,
and bring a stronger staff." So the father harnessed eight horses, and
brought one which was so long and thick, that the eight horses could only
just carry it. When the son took it in his hand, he broke off a bit from
the top of it also, and said, "Father, I see that you will not be able
to procure me any such staff as I want, I will remain no longer with you."

So he went away, and gave out that he was a smith's apprentice. He
arrived at a village, wherein lived a smith who was a greedy fellow, who
never did a kindness to any one, but wanted everything for himself. The
youth went into the smithy and asked if he needed a journeyman. "Yes,"
said the smith, and looked at him, and thought, "That is a strong fellow
who will strike out well, and earn his bread."  So he asked, "How much
wages dost thou want?" "I don't want any at all," he replied, "only every
fortnight, when the other journeymen are paid, I will give thee two blows,
and thou must bear them." The miser was heartily satisfied, and thought
he would thus save much money. Next morning, the strange journeyman was
to begin to work, but when the master brought the glowing bar, and the
youth struck his first blow, the iron flew asunder, and the anvil sank
so deep into the earth, that there was no bringing it out again. Then
the miser grew angry, and said, "Oh, but I can't make any use of you,
you strike far too powerfully; what will you have for the one blow?"

Then said he, "I will only give you quite a small blow, that's all." And
he raised his foot, and gave him such a kick that he flew away over four
loads of hay.  Then he sought out the thickest iron bar in the smithy
for himself, took it as a stick in his hand and went onwards.

When he had walked for some time, he came to a small farm, and asked the
bailiff if he did not require a head-servant. "Yes," said the bailiff,
"I can make use of one; you look a strong fellow who can do something,
how much a year do you want as wages?" He again replied that he wanted
no wages at all, but that every year he would give him three blows,
which he must bear. Then the bailiff was satisfied, for he, too, was
a covetous fellow. Next morning all the servants were to go into the
wood, and the others were already up, but the head-servant was still
in bed. Then one of them called to him, "Get up, it is time; we are
going into the wood, and thou must go with us." "Ah," said he quite
roughly and surlily, "you may just go, then; I shall be back again
before any of you." Then the others went to the bailiff, and told him
that the head-man was still lying in bed, and would not go into the
wood with them. The bailiff said they were to awaken him again, and
tell him to harness the horses. The head-man, however, said as before,
"Just go there, I shall be back again before any of you." And then he
stayed in bed two hours longer. At length he arose from the feathers,
but first he got himself two bushels of peas from the loft, made himself
some broth with them, ate it at his leisure, and when that was done,
went and harnessed the horses, and drove into the wood. Not far from the
wood was a ravine through which he had to pass, so he first drove the
horses on, and then stopped them, and went behind the cart, took trees
and brushwood, and made a great barricade, so that no horse could get
through. When he was entering the wood, the others were just driving out
of it with their loaded carts to go home; then said he to them, "Drive on,
I will still get home before you do." He did not drive far into the wood,
but at once tore two of the very largest trees of all out of the earth,
threw them on his cart, and turned round. When he came to the barricade,
the others were still standing there, not able to get through. "Don't
you see," said he, "that if you had stayed with me, you would have got
home just as quickly, and would have had another hour's sleep?" He now
wanted to drive on, but his horses could not work their way through,
so he unharnessed them, laid them on the top of the cart, took the
shafts in his own hands, and pulled it all through, and he did this just
as easily as if it had been laden with feathers. When he was over, he
said to the others, "There, you see, I have got over quicker than you,"
and drove on, and the others had to stay where they were. In the yard,
however, he took a tree in his hand, showed it to the bailiff, and said,
"Isn't that a fine bundle of wood?" Then said the bailiff to his wife,
"The servant is a good one, if he does sleep long, he is still home before
the others." So he served the bailiff for a year, and when that was over,
and the other servants were getting their wages, he said it was time
for him to take his too. The bailiff, however, was afraid of the blows
which he was to receive, and earnestly entreated him to excuse him from
having them; for rather than that, he himself would be head-servant, and
the youth should be bailiff. "No," said he, "I will not be a bailiff, I
am head-servant, and will remain so, but I will administer that which we
agreed on." The bailiff was willing to give him whatsoever he demanded,
but it was of no use, the head-servant said no to everything. Then the
bailiff did not know what to do, and begged for a fortnight's delay,
for he wanted to find some way of escape. The head-servant consented
to this delay. The bailiff summoned all his clerks together, and they
were to think the matter over, and give him advice. The clerks pondered
for a long time, but at last they said that no one was sure of his life
with the head-servant, for he could kill a man as easily as a midge,
and that the bailiff ought to make him get into the well and clean it,
and when he was down below, they would roll up one of the mill-stones
which was lying there, and throw it on his head; and then he would never
return to daylight. The advice pleased the bailiff, and the head-servant
was quite willing to go down the well. When he was standing down below
at the bottom, they rolled down the largest mill-stone and thought they
had broken his skull, but he cried, "Chase away those hens from the well,
they are scratching in the sand up there, and throwing the grains into my
eyes, so that I can't see." So the bailiff cried, "Sh-sh," and pretended
to frighten the hens away. When the head-servant had finished his work,
he climbed up and said, "Just look what a beautiful neck-tie I have on,"
and behold it was the mill-stone which he was wearing round his neck. The
head-servant now wanted to take his reward, but the bailiff again begged
for a fortnight's delay. The clerks met together and advised him to send
the head-servant to the haunted mill to grind corn by night, for from
thence as yet no man had ever returned in the morning alive. The proposal
pleased the bailiff, he called the head-servant that very evening, and
ordered him to take eight bushels of corn to the mill, and grind it that
night, for it was wanted. So the head-servant went to the loft, and put
two bushels in his right pocket, and two in his left, and took four in
a wallet, half on his back, and half on his breast, and thus laden went
to the haunted mill. The miller told him that he could grind there very
well by day, but not by night, for the mill was haunted, and that up
to the present time whosoever had gone into it at night had been found
in the morning lying dead inside. He said, "I will manage it, just you
go away to bed." Then he went into the mill, and poured out the corn.
About eleven o'clock he went into the miller's room, and sat down on
the bench.  When he had sat there a while, a door suddenly opened, and
a large table came in, and on the table, wine and roasted meats placed
themselves, and much good food besides, but everything came of itself,
for no one was there to carry it. After this the chairs pushed themselves
up, but no people came, until all at once he beheld fingers, which handled
knives and forks, and laid food on the plates, but with this exception he
saw nothing. As he was hungry, and saw the food, he, too, place himself
at the table, ate with those who were eating and enjoyed it. When he
had had enough, and the others also had quite emptied their dishes, he
distinctly heard all the candles being suddenly snuffed out, and as it
was now pitch dark, he felt something like a box on the ear. Then he said,
"If anything of that kind comes again, I shall strike out in return." And
when he had received a second box on the ear, he, too struck out. And so
it continued the whole night.  He took nothing without returning it, but
repaid everything with interest, and did not lay about him in vain. At
daybreak, however, everything ceased. When the miller had got up, he
wanted to look after him, and wondered if he were still alive. Then
the youth said, "I have eaten my fill, have received some boxes on the
ears, but I have given some in return." The miller rejoiced, and said
that the mill was now released from the spell, and wanted to give him
much money as a reward. But he said, "Money, I will not have, I have
enough of it." So he took his meal on his back, went home, and told
the bailiff that he had done what he had been told to do, and would now
have the reward agreed on. When the bailiff heard that, he was seriously
alarmed and quite beside himself; he walked backwards and forwards in
the room, and drops of perspiration ran down from his forehead. Then he
opened the window to get some fresh air, but before he was aware, the
head-servant had given him such a kick that he flew through the window
out into the air, and so far away that no one ever saw him again. Then
said the head-servant to the bailiff's wife, "If he does not come back,
you must take the other blow." She cried, "No, no I cannot bear it,"
and opened the other window, because drops of perspiration were running
down her forehead. Then he gave her such a kick that she, too, flew out,
and as she was lighter she went much higher than her husband. Her husband
cried, "Do come to me," but she replied, "Come thou to me, I cannot come
to thee." And they hovered about there in the air, and could not get to
each other, and whether they are still hovering about, or not, I do not
know, but the young giant took up his iron bar, and went on his way.



91 The Gnome

There was once upon a time a rich King who had three daughters, who daily
went to walk in the palace garden, and the King was a great lover of all
kinds of fine trees, but there was one for which he had such an affection,
that if anyone gathered an apple from it he wished him a hundred fathoms
underground. And when harvest time came, the apples on this tree were
all as red as blood. The three daughters went every day beneath the tree,
and looked to see if the wind had not blown down an apple, but they never
by any chance found one, and the tree was so loaded with them that it was
almost breaking, and the branches hung down to the ground. Then the King's
youngest child had a great desire for an apple, and said to her sisters,
"Our father loves us far too much to wish us underground, it is my belief
that he would only do that to people who were strangers." And while she
was speaking, the child plucked off quite a large apple, and ran to her
sisters, saying, "Just taste, my dear little sisters, for never in my
life have I tasted anything so delightful." Then the two other sisters
also ate some of the apple, whereupon all three sank deep down into the
earth, where they could hear no cock crow.

When mid-day came, the King wished to call them to come to dinner,
but they were nowhere to be found. He sought them everywhere in the
palace and garden, but could not find them. Then he was much troubled,
and made known to the whole land that whosoever brought his daughters
back again should have one of them to wife. Hereupon so many young men
went about the country in search, that there was no counting them, for
every one loved the three children because they were so kind to all, and
so fair of face. Three young huntsmen also went out, and when they had
travelled about for eight days, they arrived at a great castle, in which
were beautiful apartments, and in one room a table was laid on which
were delicate dishes which were still so warm that they were smoking,
but in the whole of the castle no human being was either to be seen or
heard. They waited there for half a day, and the food still remained warm
and smoking, and at length they were so hungry that they sat down and ate,
and agreed with each other that they would stay and live in that castle,
and that one of them, who should be chosen by casting lots, should remain
in the house, and the two others seek the King's daughters. They cast
lots, and the lot fell on the eldest; so next day the two younger went
out to seek, and the eldest had to stay home. At mid-day came a small,
small mannikin and begged for a piece of bread, then the huntsman took
the bread which he had found there, and cut a round off the loaf and was
about to give it to him, but whilst he was giving it to the mannikin,
the latter let it fall, and asked the huntsman to be so good as to give
him that piece again. The huntsman was about to do so and stooped, on
which the mannikin took a stick, seized him by the hair, and gave him
a good beating. Next day, the second stayed at home, and he fared no
better. When the two others returned in the evening, the eldest said,
"Well, how have you got on?"

"Oh, very badly," said he, and then they lamented their misfortune
together, but they said nothing about it to the youngest, for they did
not like him at all, and always called him Stupid Hans, because he did
not exactly belong to the forest.  On the third day, the youngest stayed
at home, and again the little mannikin came and begged for a piece of
bread. When the youth gave it to him, the elf let it fall as before, and
asked him to be so good as to give him that piece again. Then said Hans
to the little mannikin, "What! canst thou not pick up that piece thyself?
If thou wilt not take as much trouble as that for thy daily bread, thou
dost not deserve to have it." Then the mannikin grew very angry and said
he was to do it, but the huntsman would not, and took my dear mannikin,
and gave him a thorough beating. Then the mannikin screamed terribly,
and cried, "Stop, stop, and let me go, and I will tell thee where
the King's daughters are." When Hans heard that, he left off beating
him and the mannikin told him that he was an earth mannikin, and that
there were more than a thousand like him, and that if he would go with
him he would show him where the King's daughters were. Then he showed
him a deep well, but there was no water in it. And the elf said that
he knew well that the companions Hans had with him did not intend to
deal honourably with him, therefore if he wished to deliver the King's
children, he must do it alone. The two other brothers would also be
very glad to recover the King's daughters, but they did not want to
have any trouble or danger. Hans was therefore to take a large basket,
and he must seat himself in it with his hanger and a bell, and be let
down. Below were three rooms, and in each of them was a princess, with
a many-headed dragon, whose heads she was to comb and trim, but he must
cut them off. And having said all this, the elf vanished. When it was
evening the two brothers came and asked how he had got on, and he said,
"pretty well so far," and that he had seen no one except at mid-day
when a little mannikin had come and begged for a piece of bread, that
he had given some to him, but that the mannikin had let it fall and had
asked him to pick it up again; but as he did not choose to do that,
the elf had begun to lose his temper, and that he had done what he
ought not, and had given the elf a beating, on which he had told him
where the King's daughters were. Then the two were so angry at this
that they grew green and yellow. Next morning they went to the well
together, and drew lots who should first seat himself in the basket,
and again the lot fell on the eldest, and he was to seat himself in it,
and take the bell with him. Then he said, "If I ring, you must draw
me up again immediately." When he had gone down for a short distance,
he rang, and they at once drew him up again. Then the second seated
himself in the basket, but he did just the same as the first, and then
it was the turn of the youngest, but he let himself be lowered quite
to the bottom. When he had got out of the basket, he took his hanger,
and went and stood outside the first door and listened, and heard the
dragon snoring quite loudly. He opened the door slowly, and one of the
princesses was sitting there, and had nine dragon's heads lying upon her
lap, and was combing them. Then he took his hanger and hewed at them,
and the nine fell off. The princess sprang up, threw her arms round his
neck, embraced and kissed him repeatedly, and took her stomacher, which
was made of pure gold, and hung it round his neck. Then he went to the
second princess, who had a dragon with five heads to comb, and delivered
her also, and to the youngest, who had a dragon with four heads, he went
likewise. And they all rejoiced, and embraced him and kissed him without
stopping. Then he rang very loud, so that those above heard him, and he
placed the princesses one after the other in the basket, and had them all
drawn up, but when it came to his own turn he remembered the words of the
elf, who had told him that his comrades did not mean well by him. So he
took a great stone which was lying there, and placed it in the basket,
and when it was about half way up, his false brothers above cut the rope,
so that the basket with the stone fell to the ground, and they thought
that he was dead, and ran away with the three princesses, making them
promise to tell their father that it was they who had delivered them,
and then they went to the King, and each demanded a princess in marriage.

In the meantime the youngest huntsman was wandering about the three
chambers in great trouble, fully expecting to have to end his days there,
when he saw, hanging on the wall, a flute; then said he, "Why dost thou
hang there, no one can be merry here?" He looked at the dragons, heads
likewise and said, "You too cannot help me now." He walked backwards
and forwards for such a long time that he made the surface of the ground
quite smooth. But at last other thoughts came to his mind, and he took
the flute from the wall, and played a few notes on it, and suddenly
a number of elves appeared, and with every note that he sounded one
more came. Then he played until the room was entirely filled. They all
asked what he desired, so he said he wished to get above ground back to
daylight, on which they seized him by every hair that grew on his head,
and thus they flew with him onto the earth again. When he was above
ground, he at once went to the King's palace, just as the wedding
of one princess was about to be celebrated, and he went to the room
where the King and his three daughters were. When the princesses saw
him they fainted. Hereupon the King was angry, and ordered him to be
put in prison at once, because he thought he must have done some injury
to the children. When the princesses came to themselves, however, they
entreated the King to set him free again. The King asked why, and they
said that they were not allowed to tell that, but their father said
that they were to tell it to the stove. And he went out, listened at
the door, and heard everything. Then he caused the two brothers to be
hanged on the gallows, and to the third he gave his youngest daughter,
and on that occasion I wore a pair of glass shoes, and I struck them
against a stone, and they said, "Klink," and were broken.



92 The King of the Golden Mountain

There was a certain merchant who had two children, a boy and a girl;
they were both young, and could not walk. And two richly-laden ships of
his sailed forth to sea with all his property on board, and just as he
was expecting to win much money by them, news came that they had gone to
the bottom, and now instead of being a rich man he was a poor one, and
had nothing left but one field outside the town. In order to drive his
misfortune a little out of his thoughts, he went out to this field, and as
he was walking forwards and backwards in it, a little black mannikin stood
suddenly by his side, and asked why he was so sad, and what he was taking
so much to heart. Then said the merchant, "If thou couldst help me I would
willingly tell thee." "Who knows?" replied the black dwarf. "Perhaps,
I can help thee." Then the merchant told him that all he possessed had
gone to the bottom of the sea, and that he had nothing left but this
field. "Do not trouble thyself," said the dwarf. "If thou wilt promise
to give me the first thing that rubs itself against thy leg when thou
art at home again, and to bring it here to this place in twelve years'
time, thou shalt have as much money as thou wilt." The merchant thought,
"What can that be but my dog?" and did not remember his little boy, so he
said yes, gave the black man a written and sealed promise, and went home.

When he reached home, his little boy was so delighted that he held by a
bench, tottered up to him and seized him fast by the legs. The father
was shocked, for he remembered his promise, and now knew what he had
pledged himself to do; as however, he still found no money in his chest,
he thought the dwarf had only been jesting. A month afterwards he went
up to the garret, intending to gather together some old tin and to sell
it, and saw a great heap of money lying. Then he was happy again, made
purchases, became a greater merchant than before, and felt that this
world was well-governed. In the meantime the boy grew tall, and at the
same time sharp and clever. But the nearer the twelfth year approached
the more anxious grew the merchant, so that his distress might be seen
in his face.  One day his son asked what ailed him, but the father would
not say. The boy, however, persisted so long, that at last he told him
that without being aware of what he was doing, he had promised him to a
black dwarf, and had received much money for doing so. He said likewise
that he had set his hand and seal to this, and that now when twelve
years had gone by he would have to give him up.  Then said the son,
"Oh, father, do not be uneasy, all will go well. The black man has no
power over me." The son had himself blessed by the priest, and when the
time came, father and son went together to the field, and the son made a
circle and placed himself inside it with his father. Then came the black
dwarf and said to the old man, "Hast thou brought with thee that which
thou hast promised me?"  He was silent, but the son asked, "What dost
thou want here?" Then said the black dwarf, "I have to speak with thy
father, and not with thee." The son replied, "Thou hast betrayed and
misled my father, give back the writing." "No," said the black dwarf,
"I will not give up my rights." They spoke together for a long time
after this, but at last they agreed that the son, as he did not belong
to the enemy of mankind, nor yet to his father, should seat himself in a
small boat, which should lie on water which was flowing away from them,
and that the father should push it off with his own foot, and then the
son should remain given up to the water. So he took leave of his father,
placed himself in a little boat, and the father had to push it off with
his own foot. The boat capsized so that the keel was uppermost, and the
father believed his son was lost, and went home and mourned for him.

The boat, however, did not sink, but floated quietly away, and the boy
sat safely inside it, and it floated thus for a long time, until at last
it stopped by an unknown shore. Then he landed and saw a beautiful castle
before him, and set out to go to it. But when he entered it, he found that
it was bewitched. He went through every room, but all were empty until he
reached the last, where a snake lay coiled in a ring. The snake, however,
was an enchanted maiden, who rejoiced to see him, and said, "Hast thou
come, oh, my deliverer? I have already waited twelve years for thee; this
kingdom is bewitched, and thou must set it free."  "How can I do that?" he
inquired. "To-night come twelve black men, covered with chains who will
ask what thou art doing here; keep silent; give them no answer, and let
them do what they will with thee; they will torment thee, beat thee,
stab thee; let everything pass, only do not speak; at twelve o'clock,
they must go away again. On the second night twelve others will come;
on the third, four-and-twenty, who will cut off thy head, but at twelve
o'clock their power will be over, and then if thou hast endured all, and
hast not spoken the slightest word, I shall be released. I will come to
thee, and will have, in a bottle, some of the water of life. I will rub
thee with that, and then thou wilt come to life again, and be as healthy
as before." Then said he, "I will gladly set thee free." And everything
happened just as she had said; the black men could not force a single word
from him, and on the third night the snake became a beautiful princess,
who came with the water of life and brought him back to life again. So
she threw herself into his arms and kissed him, and there was joy and
gladness in the whole castle. After this their marriage was celebrated,
and he was King of the Golden Mountain.

They lived very happily together, and the Queen bore a fine boy. Eight
years had already gone by, when the King bethought him of his father;
his heart was moved, and he wished to visit him. The Queen, however,
would not let him go away, and said, "I know beforehand that it will
cause my unhappiness;" but he suffered her to have no rest until she
consented. At their parting she gave him a wishing-ring, and said,
"Take this ring and put it on thy finger, and then thou wilt immediately
be transported whithersoever thou wouldst be, only thou must promise me
not to use it in wishing me away from this place and with thy father."
That he promised her, put the ring on his finger, and wished himself
at home, just outside the town where his father lived. Instantly he
found himself there, and made for the town, but when he came to the
gate, the sentries would not let him in, because he wore such strange
and yet such rich and magnificent clothing.  Then he went to a hill
where a shepherd was watching his sheep, changed clothes with him,
put on his old shepherd's-coat, and then entered the town without
hindrance. When he came to his father, he made himself known to him,
but he did not at all believe that the shepherd was his son, and said
he certainly had had a son, but that he was dead long ago; however,
as he saw he was a poor, needy shepherd, he would give him something to
eat. Then the shepherd said to his parents, "I am verily your son. Do
you know of no mark on my body by which you could recognize me?" "Yes,"
said his mother, "our son had a raspberry mark under his right arm." He
slipped back his shirt, and they saw the raspberry under his right arm,
and no longer doubted that he was their son. Then he told them that he
was King of the Golden Mountain, and a king's daughter was his wife,
and that they had a fine son of seven years old. Then said the father,
"That is certainly not true; it is a fine kind of a king who goes about
in a ragged shepherd's-coat." On this the son fell in a passion, and
without thinking of his promise, turned his ring round, and wished both
his wife and child with him.  They were there in a second, but the Queen
wept, and reproached him, and said that he had broken his word, and had
brought misfortune upon her. He said, "I have done it thoughtlessly,
and not with evil intention," and tried to calm her, and she pretended
to believe this; but she had mischief in her mind.

Then he led her out of the town into the field, and showed her the
stream where the little boat had been pushed off, and then he said,
"I am tired; sit down, I will sleep awhile on thy lap." And he laid his
head on her lap, and fell asleep. When he was asleep, she first drew the
ring from his finger, then she drew away the foot which was under him,
leaving only the slipper behind her, and she took her child in her arms,
and wished herself back in her own kingdom. When he awoke, there he lay
quite deserted, and his wife and child were gone, and so was the ring
from his finger, the slipper only was still there as a token. "Home to
thy parents thou canst not return," thought he, "they would say that
thou wast a wizard; thou must be off, and walk on until thou arrivest
in thine own kingdom."  So he went away and came at length to a hill
by which three giants were standing, disputing with each other because
they did not know how to divide their father's property. When they saw
him passing by, they called to him and said little men had quick wits,
and that he was to divide their inheritance for them. The inheritance,
however, consisted of a sword, which had this property that if any one
took it in his hand, and said, "All heads off but mine," every head would
lie on the ground; secondly, of a cloak which made any one who put it on
invisible; thirdly, of a pair of boots which could transport the wearer
to any place he wished in a moment. He said, "Give me the three things
that I may see if they are still in good condition." They gave him the
cloak, and when he had put it on, he was invisible and changed into a
fly. Then he resumed his own form and said, "The cloak is a good one,
now give me the sword." They said, "No, we will not give thee that; if
thou were to say, All heads off but mine,' all our heads would be off,
and thou alone wouldst be left with thine." Nevertheless they gave it to
him with the condition that he was only to try it against a tree. This
he did, and the sword cut in two the trunk of a tree as if it had been a
blade of straw. Then he wanted to have the boots likewise, but they said,
"No, we will not give them; if thou hadst them on thy feet and wert to
wish thyself at the top of the hill, we should be left down here with
nothing." "Oh, no," said he, "I will not do that." So they gave him
the boots as well. And now when he had got all these things, he thought
of nothing but his wife and his child, and said as though to himself,
"Oh, if I were but on the Golden Mountain," and at the same moment he
vanished from the sight of the giants, and thus their inheritance was
divided. When he was near his palace, he heard sounds of joy, and fiddles,
and flutes, and the people told him that his wife was celebrating her
wedding with another. Then he fell into a rage, and said, "False woman,
she betrayed and deserted me whilst I was asleep!" So he put on his cloak,
and unseen by all went into the palace. When he entered the dining-hall
a great table was spread with delicious food, and the guests were eating
and drinking, and laughing, and jesting. She sat on a royal seat in the
midst of them in splendid apparel, with a crown on her head. He placed
himself behind her, and no one saw him. When she put a piece of meat on a
plate for herself, he took it away and ate it, and when she poured out a
glass of wine for herself, he took it away and drank it. She was always
helping herself to something, and yet she never got anything, for plate
and glass disappeared immediately. Then dismayed and ashamed, she arose
and went to her chamber and wept, but he followed her there. She said,
"Has the devil power over me, or did my deliverer never come?" Then he
struck her in the face, and said, "Did thy deliverer never come? It is
he who has thee in his power, thou traitor. Have I deserved this from
thee?" Then he made himself visible, went into the hall, and cried, "The
wedding is at an end, the true King has returned." The kings, princes, and
councillors who were assembled there, ridiculed and mocked him, but he did
not trouble to answer them, and said, "Will you go away, or not?" On this
they tried to seize him and pressed upon him, but he drew his sword and
said, "All heads off but mine," and all the heads rolled on the ground,
and he alone was master, and once more King of the Golden Mountain.



93 The Raven

There was once upon a time a Queen who had a little daughter who was
still so young that she had to be carried. One day the child was naughty,
and the mother might say what she liked, but the child would not be
quiet. Then she became impatient, and as the ravens were flying about
the palace, she opened the window and said, "I wish you were a raven
and would fly away, and then I should have some rest." Scarcely had she
spoken the words, before the child was changed into a raven, and flew
from her arms out of the window. It flew into a dark forest, and stayed
in it a long time, and the parents heard nothing of their child. Then one
day a man was on his way through this forest and heard the raven crying,
and followed the voice, and when he came nearer, the bird said, "I am a
king's daughter by birth, and am bewitched, but thou canst set me free."
"What am I to do," asked he. She said, "Go further into the forest,
and thou wilt find a house, wherein sits an aged woman, who will offer
thee meat and drink, but you must accept nothing, for if you eatest and
drinkest anything, thou wilt fall into a sleep, and then thou wilt not be
able to deliver me. In the garden behind the house there is a great heap
of tan, and on this thou shalt stand and wait for me. For three days I
will come every afternoon at two o'clock in a carriage. On the first day
four white horses will be harnessed to it, then four chestnut horses,
and lastly four black ones; but if thou art not awake, but sleeping,
I shall not be set free." The man promised to do everything that she
desired, but the raven said, alas, "I know already that thou wilt not
deliver me; thou wilt accept something from the woman." Then the man once
more promised that he would certainly not touch anything either to eat
or to drink. But when he entered the house the old woman came to him and
said, "Poor man, how faint you are; come and refresh yourself; eat and
drink." "No," said the man, "I will not eat or drink."  She, however,
let him have no peace, and said, "If you will not eat, take one drink
out of the glass; one is nothing." Then he let himself be persuaded,
and drank. Shortly before two o'clock in the afternoon he went into the
garden to the tan heap to wait for the raven. As he was standing there,
his weariness all at once became so great that he could not struggle
against it, and lay down for a short time, but he was determined not to
go to sleep. Hardly, however, had he lain down, than his eyes closed of
their own accord, and he fell asleep and slept so soundly that nothing in
the world could have aroused him. At two o'clock the raven came driving
up with four white horses, but she was already in deep grief and said,
"I know he is asleep." And when she came into the garden, he was indeed
lying there asleep on the heap of tan. She alighted from the carriage,
went to him, shook him, and called him, but he did not awake. Next day
about noon, the old woman came again and brought him food and drink, but
he would not take any of it. But she let him have no rest and persuaded
him until at length he again took one drink out of the glass. Towards two
o'clock he went into the garden to the tan heap to wait for the raven,
but all at once felt such a great weariness that his limbs would no longer
support him. He could not help himself, and was forced to lie down, and
fell into a heavy sleep. When the raven drove up with four brown horses,
she was already full of grief, and said, "I know he is asleep." She
went to him, but there he lay sleeping, and there was no wakening
him. Next day the old woman asked what was the meaning of this? He was
neither eating nor drinking anything; did he want to die? He replied,
"I am not allowed to eat or drink, and will not do so." But she set a
dish with food, and a glass with wine before him, and when he smelt it
he could not resist, and swallowed a deep draught. When the time came,
he went out into the garden to the heap of tan, and waited for the King's
daughter; but he became still more weary than on the day before, and lay
down and slept as soundly as if he had been a stone. At two o'clock the
raven came with four black horses, and the coachman and everything else
was black. She was already in the deepest grief, and said, "I know that
he is asleep and cannot deliver me." When she came to him, there he was
lying fast asleep. She shook him and called him, but she could not waken
him. Then she laid a loaf beside him, and after that a piece of meat,
and thirdly a bottle of wine, and he might consume as much of all of
them as he liked, but they would never grow less. After this she took
a gold ring from her finger, and put it on his, and her name was graven
on it. Lastly, she laid a letter beside him wherein was written what she
had given him, and that none of the things would ever grow less; and in
it was also written, "I see right well that here you will never be able
to deliver me, but if thou art still willing to deliver me, come to the
golden castle of Stromberg; it lies in thy power, of that I am certain."
And when she had given him all these things, she seated herself in her
carriage, and drove to the golden castle of Stromberg.

When the man awoke and saw that he had slept, he was sad at heart, and
said, "She has certainly driven by, and I have not set her free." Then
he perceived the things which were lying beside him, and read the letter
wherein was written how everything had happened. So he arose and went
away, intending to go to the golden castle of Stromberg, but he did not
know where it was. After he had walked about the world for a long time, he
entered into a dark forest, and walked for fourteen days, and still could
not find his way out. Then it was once more evening, and he was so tired
that he lay down in a thicket and fell asleep.  Next day he went onwards,
and in the evening, as he was again about to lie down beneath some bushes,
he heard such a howling and crying that he could not go to sleep. And at
the time when people light the candles, he saw one glimmering, and arose
and went towards it. Then he came to a house which seemed very small,
for in front of it a great giant was standing. He thought to himself,
"If I go in, and the giant sees me, it will very likely cost me my life."

At length he ventured it and went in. When the giant saw him, he said,
"It is well that thou comest, for it is long since I have eaten; I will
at once eat thee for my supper." "I'd rather you would leave that alone,"
said the man, "I do not like to be eaten; but if thou hast any desire
to eat, I have quite enough here to satisfy thee." "If that be true,"
said the giant, "thou mayst be easy, I was only going to devour thee
because I had nothing else." Then they went, and sat down to the table,
and the man took out the bread, wine, and meat which would never come to
an end. "This pleases me well," said the giant, and ate to his heart's
content.  Then the man said to him, "Canst thou tell me where the golden
castle of Stromberg is?" The giant said, "I will look at my map; all the
towns, and villages, and houses are to be found on it." He brought out
the map which he had in the room and looked for the castle, but it was not
to be found on it. "It's no matter!"  said he, "I have some still larger
maps in my cupboard upstairs, and we will look in them." But there, too,
it was in vain. The man now wanted to go onwards, but the giant begged him
to wait a few days longer until his brother, who had gone out to bring
some provisions, came home. When the brother came home they inquired
about the golden castle of Stromberg. He replied, "When I have eaten and
have had enough, I will look in the map." Then he went with them up to
his chamber, and they searched in his map, but could not find it. Then
he brought out still older maps, and they never rested until they found
the golden castle of Stromberg, but it was many thousand miles away. "How
am I to get there?"  asked the man. The giant said, "I have two hours'
time, during which I will carry you into the neighbourhood, but after
that I must be at home to suckle the child that we have." So the giant
carried the man to about a hundred leagues from the castle, and said,
"Thou canst very well walk the rest of the way alone." And he turned
back, but the man went onwards day and night, until at length he came to
the golden castle of Stromberg. It stood on a glass-mountain, and the
bewitched maiden drove in her carriage round the castle, and then went
inside it. He rejoiced when he saw her and wanted to climb up to her,
but when he began to do so he always slipped down the glass again. And
when he saw that he could not reach her, he was filled with trouble, and
said to himself, "I will stay down here below, and wait for her." So he
built himself a hut and stayed in it for a whole year, and every day saw
the King's daughter driving about above, but never could go to her. Then
one day he saw from his hut three robbers who were beating each other,
and cried to them, "God be with ye!" They stopped when they heard the
cry, but as they saw no one, they once more began to beat each other,
and that too most dangerously. So he again cried, "God be with ye!"
Again they stopped, looked round about, but as they saw no one they
went on beating each other. Then he cried for the third time, "God be
with ye," and thought, "I must see what these three are about," and went
thither and asked why they were beating each other so furiously. One of
them said that he found a stick, and that when he struck a door with it,
that door would spring open. The next said that he had found a mantle,
and that whenever he put it on, he was invisible, but the third said
he had found a horse on which a man could ride everywhere, even up the
glass-mountain. And now they did not know whether they ought to have these
things in common, or whether they ought to divide them. Then the man said,
"I will give you something in exchange for these three things. Money
indeed have I not, but I have other things of more value; but first I
must try yours to see if you have told the truth." Then they put him
on the horse, threw the mantle round him, and gave him the stick in his
hand, and when he had all these things they were no longer able to see
him. So he gave them some vigorous blows and cried, "Now, vagabonds,
you have got what you deserve, are you satisfied?" And he rode up the
glass-mountain, but when he came in front of the castle at the top, it
was shut. Then he struck the door with his stick, and it sprang open
immediately. He went in and ascended the stairs until he came to the
hall where the maiden was sitting with a golden cup full of wine before
her. She, however, could not see him because he had the mantle on. And
when he came up to her, he drew from his finger the ring which she had
given him, and threw it into the cup so that it rang. Then she cried,
"That is my ring, so the man who is to set me free must be here." They
searched the whole castle and did not find him, but he had gone out,
and had seated himself on the horse and thrown off the mantle. When they
came to the door, they saw him and cried aloud in their delight.* Then
he alighted and took the King's daughter in his arms, but she kissed him
and said, "Now hast thou set me free, and to-morrow we will celebrate
our wedding."



94 The Peasant's Wise Daughter

There was once a poor peasant who had no land, but only a small house, and
one daughter. Then said the daughter, "We ought to ask our lord the King
for a bit of newly-cleared land." When the King heard of their poverty,
he presented them with a piece of land, which she and her father dug up,
and intended to sow with a little corn and grain of that kind. When they
had dug nearly the whole of the field, they found in the earth a mortar
made of pure gold. "Listen," said the father to the girl, "as our lord
the King has been so gracious and presented us with the field, we ought
to give him this mortar in return for it." The daughter, however, would
not consent to this, and said, "Father, if we have the mortar without
having the pestle as well, we shall have to get the pestle, so you had
much better say nothing about it." He would, however, not obey her, but
took the mortar and carried it to the King, said that he had found it in
the cleared land, and asked if he would accept it as a present. The King
took the mortar, and asked if he had found nothing besides that? "No,"
answered the countryman.  Then the King said that he must now bring him
the pestle. The peasant said they had not found that, but he might just as
well have spoken to the wind; he was put in prison, and was to stay there
until he produced the pestle. The servants had daily to carry him bread
and water, which is what people get in prison, and they heard how the man
cried out continually, "Ah! if I had but listened to my daughter! Alas,
alas, if I had but listened to my daughter!" and would neither eat nor
drink. So he commanded the servants to bring the prisoner before him,
and then the King asked the peasant why he was always crying, "Ah! if
I had but listened to my daughter!" and what it was that his daughter
had said. "She told me that I ought not to take the mortar to you, for
I should have to produce the pestle as well." "If you have a daughter
who is as wise as that, let her come here." She was therefore obliged
to appear before the King, who asked her if she really was so wise, and
said he would set her a riddle, and if she could guess that, he would
marry her. She at once said yes, she would guess it. Then said the King,
"Come to me not clothed, not naked, not riding, not walking, not in
the road, and not out of the road, and if thou canst do that I will
marry thee." So she went away, put off everything she had on, and then
she was not clothed, and took a great fishing net, and seated herself
in it and wrapped it entirely round and round her, so that she was not
naked, and she hired an ass, and tied the fisherman's net to its tail,
so that it was forced to drag her along, and that was neither riding
nor walking. The ass had also to drag her in the ruts, so that she only
touched the ground with her great toe, and that was neither being in the
road nor out of the road. And when she arrived in that fashion, the King
said she had guessed the riddle and fulfilled all the conditions. Then
he ordered her father to be released from the prison, took her to wife,
and gave into her care all the royal possessions.

Now when some years had passed, the King was once drawing up his troops
on parade, when it happened that some peasants who had been selling wood
stopped with their waggons before the palace; some of them had oxen yoked
to them, and some horses. There was one peasant who had three horses,
one of which was delivered of a young foal, and it ran away and lay down
between two oxen which were in front of the waggon. When the peasants
came together, they began to dispute, to beat each other and make a
disturbance, and the peasant with the oxen wanted to keep the foal,
and said one of the oxen had given birth to it, and the other said his
horse had had it, and that it was his. The quarrel came before the King,
and he give the verdict that the foal should stay where it had been found,
and so the peasant with the oxen, to whom it did not belong, got it. Then
the other went away, and wept and lamented over his foal. Now he had heard
how gracious his lady the Queen was because she herself had sprung from
poor peasant folks, so he went to her and begged her to see if she could
not help him to get his foal back again. Said she, "Yes, I will tell you
what to do, if thou wilt promise me not to betray me. Early to-morrow
morning, when the King parades the guard, place thyself there in the
middle of the road by which he must pass, take a great fishing-net and
pretend to be fishing; go on fishing, too, and empty out the net as if
thou hadst got it full" and then she told him also what he was to say if
he was questioned by the King. The next day, therefore, the peasant stood
there, and fished on dry ground. When the King passed by, and saw that,
he sent his messenger to ask what the stupid man was about? He answered,
"I am fishing." The messenger asked how he could fish when there was no
water there? The peasant said, "It is as easy for me to fish on dry land
as it is for an ox to have a foal." The messenger went back and took the
answer to the King, who ordered the peasant to be brought to him and
told him that this was not his own idea, and he wanted to know whose
it was? The peasant must confess this at once. The peasant, however,
would not do so, and said always, God forbid he should! the idea was
his own. They laid him, however, on a heap of straw, and beat him and
tormented him so long that at last he admitted that he had got the idea
from the Queen.

When the King reached home again, he said to his wife, "Why hast thou
behaved so falsely to me? I will not have thee any longer for a wife;
thy time is up, go back to the place from whence thou camest to thy
peasant's hut." One favour, however, he granted her; she might take with
her the one thing that was dearest and best in her eyes; and thus was
she dismissed. She said, "Yes, my dear husband, if you command this,
I will do it," and she embraced him and kissed him, and said she would
take leave of him. Then she ordered a powerful sleeping draught to be
brought, to drink farewell to him; the King took a long draught, but
she took only a little. He soon fell into a deep sleep, and when she
perceived that, she called a servant and took a fair white linen cloth
and wrapped the King in it, and the servant was forced to carry him into
a carriage that stood before the door, and she drove with him to her own
little house. She laid him in her own little bed, and he slept one day and
one night without awakening, and when he awoke he looked round and said,
"Good God! where am I?" He called his attendants, but none of them were
there. At length his wife came to his bedside and said, "My dear lord and
King, you told me I might bring away with me from the palace that which
was dearest and most precious in my eyes I have nothing more precious
and dear than yourself, so I have brought you with me." Tears rose to
the King's eyes and he said, "Dear wife, thou shalt be mine and I will be
thine," and he took her back with him to the royal palace and was married
again to her, and at the present time they are very likely still living.



95 Old Hildebrand

Once upon a time lived a peasant and his wife, and the parson of the
village had a fancy for the wife, and had wished for a long while
to spend a whole day happily with her. The peasant woman, too, was
quite willing. One day, therefore, he said to the woman, "Listen,
my dear friend, I have now thought of a way by which we can for once
spend a whole day happily together. I'll tell you what; on Wednesday,
you must take to your bed, and tell your husband you are ill, and if
you only complain and act being ill properly, and go on doing so until
Sunday when I have to preach, I will then say in my sermon that whosoever
has at home a sick child, a sick husband, a sick wife, a sick father,
a sick mother, a sick brother or whosoever else it may be, and makes a
pilgrimage to the Göckerli hill in Italy, where you can get a peck of
laurel-leaves for a kreuzer, the sick child, the sick husband, the sick
wife, the sick father, or sick mother, the sick sister, or whosoever
else it may be, will be restored to health immediately."

"I will manage it," said the woman promptly. Now therefore on the
Wednesday, the peasant woman took to her bed, and complained and lamented
as agreed on, and her husband did everything for her that he could think
of, but nothing did her any good, and when Sunday came the woman said,
"I feel as ill as if I were going to die at once, but there is one thing
I should like to do before my end I should like to hear the parson's
sermon that he is going to preach to-day." On that the peasant said,
"Ah, my child, do not do it---thou mightest make thyself worse if thou
wert to get up. Look, I will go to the sermon, and will attend to it
very carefully, and will tell thee everything the parson says."

"Well," said the woman, "go, then, and pay great attention, and repeat
to me all that thou hearest." So the peasant went to the sermon, and the
parson began to preach and said, if any one had at home a sick child,
a sick husband, a sick wife, a sick father a sick mother, a sick sister,
brother or any one else, and would make a pilgrimage to the Göckerli hill
in Italy, where a peck of laurel-leaves costs a kreuzer, the sick child,
sick husband, sick wife, sick father, sick mother, sick sister, brother,
or whosoever else it might be, would be restored to health instantly,
and whosoever wished to undertake the journey was to go to him after the
service was over, and he would give him the sack for the laurel-leaves
and the kreuzer.

Then no one was more rejoiced than the peasant, and after the service
was over, he went at once to the parson, who gave him the bag for the
laurel-leaves and the kreuzer. After that he went home, and even at the
house door he cried, "Hurrah! dear wife, it is now almost the same thing
as if thou wert well! The parson has preached to-day that whosoever had
at home a sick child, a sick husband, a sick wife, a sick father, a sick
mother, a sick sister, brother or whoever it might be, and would make a
pilgrimage to the Göckerli hill in Italy, where a peck of laurel-leaves
costs a kreuzer, the sick child, sick husband, sick wife, sick father,
sick mother, sick sister, brother, or whosoever else it was, would be
cured immediately, and now I have already got the bag and the kreuzer
from the parson, and will at once begin my journey so that thou mayst
get well the faster," and thereupon he went away. He was, however,
hardly gone before the woman got up, and the parson was there directly.

But now we will leave these two for a while, and follow the peasant,
who walked on quickly without stopping, in order to get the sooner to
the Göckerli hill, and on his way he met his gossip. His gossip was an
egg-merchant, and was just coming from the market, where he had sold
his eggs. "May you be blessed," said the gossip, "where are you off to
so fast?"

"To all eternity, my friend," said the peasant, "my wife is ill, and
I have been to-day to hear the parson's sermon, and he preached that
if any one had in his house a sick child, a sick husband, a sick wife,
a sick father, a sick mother, a sick sister, brother or any one else,
and made a pilgrimage to the Göckerli hill in Italy, where a peck of
laurel-leaves costs a kreuzer, the sick child, the sick husband, the
sick wife, the sick father, the sick mother, the sick sister, brother or
whosoever else it was, would be cured immediately, and so I have got the
bag for the laurel-leaves and the kreuzer from the parson, and now I am
beginning my pilgrimage." "But listen, gossip," said the egg-merchant to
the peasant, "are you, then, stupid enough to believe such a thing as
that? Don't you know what it means? The parson wants to spend a whole
day alone with your wife in peace, so he has given you this job to do
to get you out of the way."

"My word!" said the peasant. "How I'd like to know if that's true!"

"Come, then," said the gossip, "I'll tell you what to do. Get into
my egg-basket and I will carry you home, and then you will see for
yourself." So that was settled, and the gossip put the peasant into his
egg-basket and carried him home.

When they got to the house, hurrah! but all was going merry there! The
woman had already had nearly everything killed that was in the farmyard,
and had made pancakes, and the parson was there, and had brought his
fiddle with him. The gossip knocked at the door, and woman asked who was
there. "It is I, gossip," said the egg-merchant, "give me shelter this
night; I have not sold my eggs at the market, so now I have to carry them
home again, and they are so heavy that I shall never be able to do it,
for it is dark already."

"Indeed, my friend," said the woman, "thou comest at a very inconvenient
time for me, but as thou art here it can't be helped, come in, and take
a seat there on the bench by the stove." Then she placed the gossip and
the basket which he carried on his back on the bench by the stove. The
parson, however, and the woman, were as merry as possible. At length
the parson said, "Listen, my dear friend, thou canst sing beautifully;
sing something to me." "Oh," said the woman, "I cannot sing now, in my
young days indeed I could sing well enough, but that's all over now."

"Come," said the parson once more, "do sing some little song."

On that the woman began and sang,


 "I've sent my husband away from me
 To the Göckerli hill in Italy."

Thereupon the parson sang,


 "I wish 'twas a year before he came back,
 I'd never ask himfor the laurel-leaf sack."

Hallelujah.

Then the gossip who was in the background began to sing (but I ought to
tell you the peasant was called Hildebrand), so the gossip sang,


 "What art thou doing, my Hildebrand dear,
 There on the bench by the stove so near?"

Hallelujah.

And then the peasant sang from his basket,


 "All singing I ever shall hate from this day,
 And here in this basket no longer I'll stay."

Hallelujah.

And he got out of the basket, and cudgelled the parson out of the house.



96 The Three Little Birds

About a thousand or more years ago, there were in this country nothing
but small kings, and one of them who lived on the Keuterberg was very fond
of hunting.  Once on a time when he was riding forth from his castle with
his huntsmen, three girls were watching their cows upon the mountain, and
when they saw the King with all his followers, the eldest girl pointed
to him, and called to the two other girls, "If I do not get that one,
I will have none." Then the second girl answered from the other side
of the hill, and pointed to the one who was on the King's right hand,
"Hilloa! hilloa! If I do not get him, I will have no one." These, however,
were the two ministers. The King heard all this, and when he had come back
from the chase, he caused the three girls to be brought to him, and asked
them what they had said yesterday on the mountain. This they would not
tell him, so the King asked the eldest if she really would take him for
her husband? Then she said, "Yes," and the two ministers married the two
sisters, for they were all three fair and beautiful of face, especially
the Queen, who had hair like flax. But the two sisters had no children,
and once when the King was obliged to go from home he invited them to
come to the Queen in order to cheer her, for she was about to bear a
child. She had a little boy who brought a bright red star into the world
with him. Then the two sisters said to each other that they would throw
the beautiful boy into the water. When they had thrown him in (I believe
it was into the Weser) a little bird flew up into the air, which sang,


 "To thy death art thou sped,
 Until God's word be said.

 In the white lily bloom,
 Brave boy, is thy tomb."

When the two heard that, they were frightened to death, and ran away in
great haste. When the King came home they told him that the Queen had
been delivered of a dog. Then the King said, "What God does, is well
done!" But a fisherman who dwelt near the water fished the little boy
out again while he was still alive, and as his wife had no children,
they reared him. When a year had gone by, the King again went away,
and the Queen had another little boy, whom the false sisters likewise
took and threw into the water. Then up flew a little bird again and sang,


 "To thy death art thou sped,
 Until God's word be said.

 In the white lily bloom,
 Brave boy, is thy tomb."

And when the King came back, they told him that the Queen had once
more given birth to a dog, and he again said, "What God does, is well
done." The fisherman, however, fished this one also out of the water,
and reared him.

Then the King again journeyed forth, and the Queen had a little girl,
whom also the false sisters threw into the water. Then again a little
bird flew up on high and sang,


 "To thy death art thou sped
 Until God's word be said.

 In the white lily bloom,
 Bonny girl, is thy tomb."

And when the King came home they told him that the Queen had been
delivered of a cat. Then the King grew angry, and ordered his wife to
be cast into prison, and therein was she shut up for many long years.

In the meantime the children had grown up. Then eldest once went out with
some other boys to fish, but the other boys would not have him with them,
and said, "Go thy way, foundling."

Hereupon he was much troubled, and asked the old fisherman if that
was true?  The fisherman told him that once when he was fishing he had
drawn him out of the water. So the boy said he would go forth and seek
his father. The fisherman, however, entreated him to stay, but he would
not let himself be hindered, and at last the fisherman consented. Then
the boy went on his way and walked for many days, and at last he came
to a great piece of water by the side of which stood an old woman
fishing. "Good day, mother," said the boy.

"Many thanks," said she.

"Thou wilt fish long enough before thou catchest anything."

"And thou wilt seek long enough before thou findest thy father. How wilt
thou get over the water?" said the woman.

"God knows."

Then the old woman took him up on her back and carried him through it,
and he sought for a long time, but could not find his father.

When a year had gone by, the second boy set out to seek his brother. He
came to the water, and all fared with him just as with his brother. And
now there was no one at home but the daughter, and she mourned for
her brothers so much that at last she also begged the fisherman to let
her set forth, for she wished to go in search of her brothers. Then she
likewise came to the great piece of water, and she said to the old woman,
"Good day, mother."

"Many thanks," replied the old woman.

"May God help you with your fishing," said the maiden. When the old woman
heard that, she became quite friendly, and carried her over the water,
gave her a wand, and said to her, "Go, my daughter, ever onwards by this
road, and when you come to a great black dog, you must pass it silently
and boldly, without either laughing or looking at it. Then you will come
to a great high castle, on the threshold of which you must let the wand
fall, and go straight through the castle, and out again on the other
side. There you will see an old fountain out of which a large tree
has grown, whereon hangs a bird in a cage which you must take down.
Take likewise a glass of water out of the fountain, and with these
two things go back by the same way. Pick up the wand again from the
threshold and take it with you, and when you again pass by the dog,
strike him in the face with it, but be sure that you hit him, and then
just come back here to me." The maiden found everything exactly as the old
woman had said, and on her way back she found her two brothers who had
sought each other over half the world. They went together to the place
where the black dog was lying on the road; she struck it in the face,
and it turned into a handsome prince who went with them to the river.
There the old woman was still standing. She rejoiced much to see them
again, and carried them all over the water, and then she too went away,
for now she was freed. The others, however, went to the old fisherman,
and all were glad that they had found each other again, but they hung
the bird on the wall.

But the second son could not settle at home, and took his cross-bow and
went a-hunting. When he was tired he took his flute, and made music. The
King was hunting too, and heard that and went thither, and when he met
the youth, he said, "Who has given thee leave to hunt here?"

"Oh, no one."

"To whom dost thou belong, then?"

"I am the fisherman's son."

"But he has no children."

"If thou wilt not believe, come with me."

That the King did, and questioned the fisherman, who told everything to
him, and the little bird on the wall began to sing,


 "The mother sits alone
 There in the prison small,
 O King of royal blood,
 These are thy children all.
 The sisters twain so false,
 They wrought the children woe,
 There in the waters deep
 Where the fishermen come and go."

Then they were all terrified, and the King took the bird, the fisherman
and the three children back with him to the castle, and ordered the
prison to be opened and brought his wife out again. She had, however,
grown quite ill and weak.  Then the daughter gave her some of the water
of the fountain to drink, and she became strong and healthy. But the
two false sisters were burnt, and the daughter married the prince.



97 The Water of Life

There was once a King who had an illness, and no one believed that
he would come out of it with his life. He had three sons who were much
distressed about it, and went down into the palace-garden and wept. There
they met an old man who inquired as to the cause of their grief. They
told him that their father was so ill that he would most certainly die,
for nothing seemed to cure him. Then the old man said, "I know of one more
remedy, and that is the water of life; if he drinks of it he will become
well again; but it is hard to find." The eldest said, "I will manage
to find it," and went to the sick King, and begged to be allowed to go
forth in search of the water of life, for that alone could save him. "No,"
said the King, "the danger of it is too great. I would rather die." But he
begged so long that the King consented. The prince thought in his heart,
"If I bring the water, then I shall be best beloved of my father, and
shall inherit the kingdom." So he set out, and when he had ridden forth
a little distance, a dwarf stood there in the road who called to him
and said, "Whither away so fast?" "Silly shrimp," said the prince, very
haughtily, "it is nothing to do with you," and rode on. But the little
dwarf had grown angry, and had wished an evil wish. Soon after this the
prince entered a ravine, and the further he rode the closer the mountains
drew together, and at last the road became so narrow that he could not
advance a step further; it was impossible either to turn his horse or to
dismount from the saddle, and he was shut in there as if in prison. The
sick King waited long for him, but he came not. Then the second son said,
"Father, let me go forth to seek the water," and thought to himself,
"If my brother is dead, then the kingdom will fall to me." At first
the King would not allow him to go either, but at last he yielded,
so the prince set out on the same road that his brother had taken, and
he too met the dwarf, who stopped him to ask, whither he was going in
such haste? "Little shrimp," said the prince, "that is nothing to thee,"
and rode on without giving him another look. But the dwarf bewitched him,
and he, like the other, rode into a ravine, and could neither go forwards
nor backwards. So fare haughty people.

As the second son also remained away, the youngest begged to be allowed
to go forth to fetch the water, and at last the King was obliged to
let him go. When he met the dwarf and the latter asked him whither he
was going in such haste, he stopped, gave him an explanation, and said,
"I am seeking the water of life, for my father is sick unto death." "Dost
thou know, then, where that is to be found?"  "No," said the prince. "As
thou hast borne thyself as is seemly, and not haughtily like thy false
brothers, I will give thee the information and tell thee how thou mayst
obtain the water of life. It springs from a fountain in the courtyard
of an enchanted castle, but thou wilt not be able to make thy way to it,
if I do not give thee an iron wand and two small loaves of bread. Strike
thrice with the wand on the iron door of the castle and it will spring
open: inside lie two lions with gaping jaws, but if thou throwest a
loaf to each of them, they will be quieted. Then hasten to fetch some
of the water of life before the clock strikes twelve, else the door
will shut again, and thou wilt be imprisoned." The prince thanked him,
took the wand and the bread, and set out on his way. When he arrived,
everything was as the dwarf had said. The door sprang open at the third
stroke of the wand, and when he had appeased the lions with the bread,
he entered the castle, and came to a large and splendid hall, wherein
sat some enchanted princes whose rings he drew off their fingers. A sword
and a loaf of bread were lying there, which he carried away. After this,
he entered a chamber, in which was a beautiful maiden who rejoiced when
she saw him, kissed him, and told him that he had delivered her, and
should have the whole of her kingdom, and that if he would return in a
year their wedding should be celebrated; likewise she told him where the
spring of the water of life was, and that he was to hasten and draw some
of it before the clock struck twelve. Then he went onwards, and at last
entered a room where there was a beautiful newly-made bed, and as he was
very weary, he felt inclined to rest a little. So he lay down and fell
asleep. When he awoke, it was striking a quarter to twelve. He sprang
up in a fright, ran to the spring, drew some water in a cup which stood
near, and hastened away. But just as he was passing through the iron
door, the clock struck twelve, and the door fell to with such violence
that it carried away a piece of his heel. He, however, rejoicing at
having obtained the water of life, went homewards, and again passed
the dwarf. When the latter saw the sword and the loaf, he said, "With
these thou hast won great wealth; with the sword thou canst slay whole
armies, and the bread will never come to an end." But the prince would
not go home to his father without his brothers, and said, "Dear dwarf,
canst thou not tell me where my two brothers are? They went out before
I did in search of the water of life, and have not returned." "They are
imprisoned between two mountains," said the dwarf. "I have condemned them
to stay there, because they were so haughty." Then the prince begged
until the dwarf released them; but he warned him, however, and said,
"Beware of them, for they have bad hearts." When his brothers came,
he rejoiced, and told them how things had gone with him, that he had
found the water of life and had brought a cupful away with him, and had
rescued a beautiful princess, who was willing to wait a year for him,
and then their wedding was to be celebrated and he would obtain a great
kingdom. After that they rode on together, and chanced upon a land where
war and famine reigned, and the King already thought he must perish,
for the scarcity was so great. Then the prince went to him and gave him
the loaf, wherewith he fed and satisfied the whole of his kingdom, and
then the prince gave him the sword also wherewith he slew the hosts of
his enemies, and could now live in rest and peace. The prince then took
back his loaf and his sword, and the three brothers rode on. But after
this they entered two more countries where war and famine reigned and
each time the prince gave his loaf and his sword to the Kings, and had
now delivered three kingdoms, and after that they went on board a ship
and sailed over the sea.  During the passage, the two eldest conversed
apart and said, "The youngest has found the water of life and not we, for
that our father will give him the kingdom the kingdom which belongs to us,
and he will rob us of all our fortune." They then began to seek revenge,
and plotted with each other to destroy him. They waited until they found
him fast asleep, then they poured the water of life out of the cup, and
took it for themselves, but into the cup they poured salt sea-water. Now
therefore, when they arrived home, the youngest took his cup to the sick
King in order that he might drink out of it, and be cured. But scarcely
had he drunk a very little of the salt sea-water than he became still
worse than before. And as he was lamenting over this, the two eldest
brothers came, and accused the youngest of having intended to poison him,
and said that they had brought him the true water of life, and handed it
to him. He had scarcely tasted it, when he felt his sickness departing,
and became strong and healthy as in the days of his youth.  After that
they both went to the youngest, mocked him, and said, "You certainly
found the water of life, but you have had the pain, and we the gain;
you should have been sharper, and should have kept your eyes open. We
took it from you whilst you were asleep at sea, and when a year is over,
one of us will go and fetch the beautiful princess. But beware that you do
not disclose aught of this to our father; indeed he does not trust you,
and if you say a single word, you shall lose your life into the bargain,
but if you keep silent, you shall have it as a gift."

The old King was angry with his youngest son, and thought he had
plotted against his life. So he summoned the court together and had
sentence pronounced upon his son, that he should be secretly shot. And
once when the prince was riding forth to the chase, suspecting no evil,
the King's huntsman had to go with him, and when they were quite alone in
the forest, the huntsman looked so sorrowful that the prince said to him,
"Dear huntsman, what ails you?"  The huntsman said, "I cannot tell you,
and yet I ought." Then the prince said, "Say openly what it is, I will
pardon you." "Alas!" said the huntsman, "I am to shoot you dead, the
King has ordered me to do it." Then the prince was shocked, and said,
"Dear huntsman, let me live; there, I give you my royal garments; give me
your common ones in their stead." The huntsman said, "I will willingly
do that, indeed I should not have been able to shoot you." Then they
exchanged clothes, and the huntsman returned home; the prince, however,
went further into the forest. After a time three waggons of gold and
precious stones came to the King for his youngest son, which were sent
by the three Kings who had slain their enemies with the prince's sword,
and maintained their people with his bread, and who wished to show
their gratitude for it. The old King then thought, "Can my son have been
innocent?" and said to his people, "Would that he were still alive, how
it grieves me that I have suffered him to be killed!" "He still lives,"
said the huntsman, "I could not find it in my heart to carry out your
command," and told the King how it had happened. Then a stone fell from
the King's heart, and he had it proclaimed in every country that his
son might return and be taken into favour again.

The princess, however, had a road made up to her palace which was
quite bright and golden, and told her people that whosoever came
riding straight along it to her, would be the right wooer and was to
be admitted, and whoever rode by the side of it, was not the right
one, and was not to be admitted. As the time was now close at hand,
the eldest thought he would hasten to go to the King's daughter, and
give himself out as her deliverer, and thus win her for his bride,
and the kingdom to boot. Therefore he rode forth, and when he arrived
in front of the palace, and saw the splendid golden road, he thought,
it would be a sin and a shame if he were to ride over that, and turned
aside, and rode on the right side of it. But when he came to the door,
the servants told him that he was not the right man, and was to go away
again. Soon after this the second prince set out, and when he came to
the golden road, and his horse had put one foot on it, he thought, it
would be a sin and a shame to tread a piece of it off, and he turned
aside and rode on the left side of it, and when he reached the door,
the attendants told him he was not the right one, and he was to go
away again.  When at last the year had entirely expired, the third son
likewise wished to ride out of the forest to his beloved, and with her
forget his sorrows. So he set out and thought of her so incessantly,
and wished to be with her so much, that he never noticed the golden road
at all. So his horse rode onwards up the middle of it, and when he came
to the door, it was opened and the princess received him with joy, and
said he was her deliverer, and lord of the kingdom, and their wedding
was celebrated with great rejoicing. When it was over she told him that
his father invited him to come to him, and had forgiven him. So he rode
thither, and told him everything; how his brothers had betrayed him,
and how he had nevertheless kept silence. The old King wished to punish
them, but they had put to sea, and never came back as long as they lived.



98 Doctor Knowall

There was once on a time a poor peasant called Crabb, who drove with
two oxen a load of wood to the town, and sold it to a doctor for two
thalers. When the money was being counted out to him, it so happened that
the doctor was sitting at table, and when the peasant saw how daintily
he ate and drank, his heart desired what he saw, and he would willingly
have been a doctor too. So he remained standing a while, and at length
inquired if he too could not be a doctor.  "Oh, yes," said the doctor,
"that is soon managed." "What must I do?" asked the peasant. "In the
first place buy thyself an A B C book of the kind which has a cock on the
frontispiece: in the second, turn thy cart and thy two oxen into money,
and get thyself some clothes, and whatsoever else pertains to medicine;
thirdly, have a sign painted for thyself with the words, "I am Doctor
Knowall," and have that nailed up above thy house-door." The peasant
did everything that he had been told to do. When he had doctored people
awhile, but not long, a rich and great lord had some money stolen. Then
he was told about Doctor Knowall who lived in such and such a village, and
must know what had become of the money. So the lord had the horses put in
his carriage, drove out to the village, and asked Crabb if he were Doctor
Knowall? Yes, he was, he said.  Then he was to go with him and bring
back the stolen money. "Oh, yes, but Grethe, my wife, must go too." The
lord was willing and let both of them have a seat in the carriage, and
they all drove away together. When they came to the nobleman's castle,
the table was spread, and Crabb was told to sit down and eat. "Yes, but
my wife, Grethe, too," said he, and he seated himself with her at the
table. And when the first servant came with a dish of delicate fare,
the peasant nudged his wife, and said, "Grethe, that was the first,"
meaning that was the servant who brought the first dish. The servant,
however, thought he intended by that to say, "That is the first thief,"
and as he actually was so, he was terrified, and said to his comrade
outside, "The doctor knows all: we shall fare ill, he said I was the
first." The second did not want to go in at all, but was forced. So
when he went in with his dish, the peasant nudged his wife, and said,
"Grethe, that is the second." This servant was just as much alarmed, and
he got out. The third did not fare better, for the peasant again said,
"Grethe, that is the third." The fourth had to carry in a dish that was
covered, and the lord told the doctor that he was to show his skill,
and guess what was beneath the cover. The doctor looked at the dish,
had no idea what to say, and cried, "Ah, poor Crabb." When the lord
heard that, he cried, "There! he knows it, he knows who has the money!"

On this the servants looked terribly uneasy, and made a sign to the
doctor that they wished him to step outside for a moment. When therefore
he went out, all four of them confessed to him that they had stolen
the money, and said that they would willingly restore it and give him
a heavy sum into the bargain, if he would not denounce them, for if he
did they would be hanged. They led him to the spot where the money was
concealed. With this the doctor was satisfied, and returned to the hall,
sat down to the table, and said, "My lord, now will I search in my book
where the gold is hidden." The fifth servant, however, crept into the
stove to hear if the doctor knew still more. The Doctor, however, sat
still and opened his A B C book, turned the pages backwards and forwards,
and looked for the cock. As he could not find it immediately he said,
"I know you are there, so you had better show yourself." Then the fellow
in the stove thought that the doctor meant him, and full of terror,
sprang out, crying, "That man knows everything!" Then Dr. Knowall showed
the count where the money was, but did not say who had stolen it, and
received from both sides much money in reward, and became a renowned man.



99 The Spirit in the Bottle

There was once a poor woodcutter who toiled from early morning till
late night.  When at last he had laid by some money he said to his boy,
"You are my only child, I will spend the money which I have earned with
the sweat of my brow on your education; if you learn some honest trade
you can support me in my old age, when my limbs have grown stiff and
I am obliged to stay at home." Then the boy went to a High School and
learned diligently so that his masters praised him, and he remained there
a long time. When he had worked through two classes, but was still not yet
perfect in everything, the little pittance which the father had earned
was all spent, and the boy was obliged to return home to him. "Ah,"
said the father, sorrowfully, "I can give you no more, and in these
hard times I cannot earn a farthing more than will suffice for our
daily bread." "Dear father," answered the son, "don't trouble yourself
about it, if it is God's will, it will turn to my advantage I shall soon
accustom myself to it." When the father wanted to go into the forest to
earn money by helping to pile and stack wood ans also chop it, the son
said, "I will go with you and help you." "Nay, my son," said the father,
"that would be hard for you; you are not accustomed to rough work, and
will not be able to bear it, besides I have only one axe and no money
left wherewith to buy another." "Just go to the neighbour," answered the
son, "he will lend you his axe until I have earned one for myself." The
father then borrowed an axe of the neighbour, and next morning at break
of day they went out into the forest together. The son helped his father
and was quite merry and brisk about it. But when the sun was right over
their heads, the father said, "We will rest, and have our dinner, and
then we shall work as well again." The son took his bread in his hands,
and said, "Just you rest, father, I am not tired; I will walk up and
down a little in the forest, and look for birds' nests." "Oh, you fool,"
said the father, "why should you want to run about there? Afterwards you
will be tired, and no longer able to raise your arm; stay here, and sit
down beside me." The son, however, went into the forest, ate his bread,
was very merry and peered in among the green branches to see if he could
discover a bird's nest anywhere. So he went up and down to see if he could
find a bird's nest until at last he came to a great dangerous-looking oak,
which certainly was already many hundred years old, and which five men
could not have spanned. He stood still and looked at it, and thought,
"Many a bird must have built its nest in that." Then all at once it
seemed to him that he heard a voice. He listened and became aware that
someone was crying in a very smothered voice, "Let me out, let me out!" He
looked around, but could discover nothing; nevertheless, he fancied that
the voice came out of the ground. Then he cried, "Where art thou?" The
voice answered, "I am down here amongst the roots of the oak-tree. Let me
out! Let me out!" The scholar began to loosen the earth under the tree,
and search among the roots, until at last he found a glass bottle in a
little hollow. He lifted it up and held it against the light, and then
saw a creature shaped like a frog, springing up and down in it. "Let
me out! Let me out!" it cried anew, and the scholar thinking no evil,
drew the cork out of the bottle. Immediately a spirit ascended from it,
and began to grow, and grew so fast that in a very few moments he stood
before the scholar, a terrible fellow as big as half the tree by which
he was standing. "Knowest thou," he cried in an awful voice, "what thy
wages are for having let me out?" "No," replied the scholar fearlessly,
"how should I know that?" "Then I will tell thee," cried the spirit;
"I must strangle thee for it." "Thou shouldst have told me that sooner,"
said the scholar, "for I should then have left thee shut up, but my
head shall stand fast for all thou canst do; more persons than one must
be consulted about that."  "More persons here, more persons there,"
said the spirit. "Thou shalt have the wages thou hast earned. Dost thou
think that I was shut up there for such a long time as a favour. No, it
was a punishment for me. I am the mighty Mercurius.  Whoso releases me,
him must I strangle." "Softly," answered the scholar, "not so fast. I
must first know that thou really wert shut up in that little bottle,
and that thou art the right spirit. If, indeed, thou canst get in again,
I will believe and then thou mayst do as thou wilt with me." The spirit
said haughtily, "that is a very trifling feat," drew himself together,
and made himself as small and slender as he had been at first, so that
he crept through the same opening, and right through the neck of the
bottle in again. Scarcely was he within than the scholar thrust the cork
he had drawn back into the bottle, and threw it among the roots of the
oak into its old place, and the spirit was betrayed.

And now the scolar was about to return to his father, but the spirit
cried very piteously, "Ah, do let me out! ah, do let me out!" "No,"
answered the scholar, "not a second time! He who has once tried to take my
life shall not be set free by me, now that I have caught him again." "If
thou wilt set me free," said the spirit, "I will give thee so much that
thou wilt have plenty all the days of thy life." "No," answered the boy,
"thou wouldst cheat me as thou didst the first time." "Thou art playing
away with thy own good luck," said the spirit; "I will do thee no harm
but will reward thee richly." The scholar thought, "I will venture it,
perhaps he will keep his word, and anyhow he shall not get the better
of me." Then he took out the cork, and the spirit rose up from the
bottle as he had done before, stretched himself out and became as big
as a giant. "Now thou shalt have thy reward," said he, and handed the
scholar a little bag just like a plaster, and said, "If thou spreadest
one end of this over a wound it will heal, and if thou rubbest steel or
iron with the other end it will be changed into silver." "I must just
try that," said the scholar, and went to a tree, tore off the bark with
his axe, and rubbed it with one end of the plaster. It immediately closed
together and was healed. "Now, it is all right," he said to the spirit,
"and we can part." The spirit thanked him for his release, and the boy
thanked the spirit for his present, and went back to his father.

"Where hast thou been racing about?" said the father; "why hast thou
forgotten thy work? I said at once that thou wouldst never get on with
anything." "Be easy, father, I will make it up." "Make it up indeed,"
said the father angrily, "there's no art in that." "Take care, father,
I will soon hew that tree there, so that it will split."  Then he
took his plaster, rubbed the axe with it, and dealt a mighty blow,
but as the iron had changed into silver, the edge turned; "Hollo,
father, just look what a bad axe you've given me, it has become quite
crooked." The father was shocked and said, "Ah, what hast thou done? now
I shall have to pay for that, and have not the wherewithal, and that is
all the good I have got by thy work." "Don't get angry," said the son,
"I will soon pay for the axe." "Oh, thou blockhead," cried the father,
"wherewith wilt thou pay for it? Thou hast nothing but what I give
thee. These are students' tricks that are sticking in thy head, but
thou hast no idea of wood-cutting." After a while the scholar said,
"Father, I can really work no more, we had better take a holiday." "Eh,
what!" answered he, "Dost thou think I will sit with my hands lying in
my lap like thee? I must go on working, but thou mayst take thyself off
home." "Father, I am here in this wood for the first time, I don't know
my way alone. Do go with me." As his anger had now abated, the father at
last let himself be persuaded and went home with him. Then he said to the
son, "Go and sell thy damaged axe, and see what thou canst get for it,
and I must earn the difference, in order to pay the neighbour." The son
took the axe, and carried it into town to a goldsmith, who tested it,
laid it in the scales, and said, "It is worth four hundred thalers, I
have not so much as that by me." The son said, "Give me what thou hast,
I will lend you the rest." The goldsmith gave him three hundred thalers,
and remained a hundred in his debt. The son thereupon went home and said,
"Father, I have got the money, go and ask the neighbour what he wants
for the axe." "I know that already," answered the old man, "one thaler,
six groschen." "Then give him him two thalers, twelve groschen, that
is double and enough; see, I have money in plenty," and he gave the
father a hundred thalers, and said, "You shall never know want, live as
comfortably as you like." "Good heavens!" said the father, "how hast
thou come by these riches?" The scholar then told how all had come to
pass, and how he, trusting in his luck, had made such a good hit. But
with the money that was left, he went back to the High School and went
on learning more, and as he could heal all wounds with his plaster,
he became the most famous doctor in the whole world.



100 The Devil's Sooty Brother

A disbanded soldier had nothing to live on, and did not know how to get
on. So he went out into the forest and when he had walked for a short
time, he met a little man who was, however, the Devil. The little
man said to him, "What ails you, you seem so very sorrowful?" Then
the soldier said, "I am hungry, but have no money." The Devil said,
"If you will hire yourself to me, and be my serving-man, you shall have
enough for all your life? You shall serve me for seven years, and after
that you shall again be free. But one thing I must tell you, and that is,
you must not wash, comb, or trim yourself, or cut your hair or nails, or
wipe the water from your eyes." The soldier said, "All right, if there
is no help for it," and went off with the little man, who straightway
led him down into hell.  Then he told him what he had to do. He was to
poke the fire under the kettles wherein the hell-broth was stewing, keep
the house clean, drive all the sweepings behind the doors, and see that
everything was in order, but if he once peeped into the kettles, it would
go ill with him. The soldier said, "Good, I will take care." And then
the old Devil went out again on his wanderings, and the soldier entered
upon his new duties, made the fire, and swept the dirt well behind the
doors, just as he had been bidden. When the old Devil came back again,
he looked to see if all had been done, appeared satisfied, and went
forth a second time. The soldier now took a good look on every side;
the kettles were standing all round hell with a mighty fire below them,
and inside they were boiling and sputtering. He would have given anything
to look inside them, if the Devil had not so particularly forbidden him:
at last, he could no longer restrain himself, slightly raised the lid
of the first kettle, and peeped in, and there he saw his former corporal
shut in. "Aha, old bird!" said he, "Do I meet you here? You once had me in
your power, now I have you," and he quickly let the lid fall, poked the
fire, and added a fresh log. After that, he went to the second kettle,
raised its lid also a little, and peeped in; his former ensign was in
that. "Aha, old bird, so I find you here! you once had me in your power,
now I have you." He closed the lid again, and fetched yet another log
to make it really hot. Then he wanted to see who might be sitting up
in the third kettle it was actually be but a general. "Aha, old bird,
do I meet you here? Once you had me in your power, now I have you."
And he fetched the bellows and made hell-fire blaze right under him. So
he did his work seven years in hell, did not wash, comb, or trim himself,
or cut his hair or nails, or wash the water out of his eyes, and the
seven years seemed so short to him that he thought he had only been half
a year. Now when the time had fully gone by, the Devil came and said,
"Well Hans, what have you done?" "I poked the fire under the kettles,
and I have swept all the dirt well behind the doors."

"But you have peeped into the kettles as well; it is lucky for you
that you added fresh logs to them, or else your life would have been
forfeited; now that your time is up, will you go home again?" "Yes,"
said the soldier, "I should very much like to see what my father is
doing at home." The Devil said, "In order that you may receive the
wages you have earned, go and fill your knapsack full of the sweepings,
and take it home with you. You must also go unwashed and uncombed, with
long hair on your head and beard, and with uncut nails and dim eyes,
and when you are asked whence you come, you must say, "From hell,"
and when you are asked who you are, you are to say, "The Devil's sooty
brother, and my King as well." The soldier held his peace, and did as
the Devil bade him, but he was not at all satisfied with his wages. Then
as soon as he was up in the forest again, he took his knapsack from
his back, to empty it, but on opening it, the sweepings had become
pure gold. "I should never have expected that," said he, and was well
pleased, and entered the town. The landlord was standing in front of
the inn, and when he saw the soldier approaching, he was terrified,
because Hans looked so horrible, worse than a scare-crow. He called to
him and asked, "Whence comest thou?" "From hell." "Who art thou?" "The
Devil's sooty brother, and my King as well." Then the host would not
let him enter, but when Hans showed him the gold, he came and unlatched
the door himself. Hans then ordered the best room and attendance, ate,
and drank his fill, but neither washed nor combed himself as the Devil
had bidden him, and at last lay down to sleep. But the knapsack full of
gold remained before the eyes of the landlord, and left him no peace, and
during the night he crept in and stole it away. Next morning, however,
when Hans got up and wanted to pay the landlord and travel further,
behold his knapsack was gone! But he soon composed himself and thought,
"Thou hast been unfortunate from no fault of thine own," and straightway
went back again to hell, complained of his misfortune to the old Devil,
and begged for his help. The Devil said, "Seat yourself, I will wash,
comb, and trim you, cut your hair and nails, and wash your eyes for you,"
and when he had done with him, he gave him the knapsack back again full
of sweepings, and said, "Go and tell the landlord that he must return
you your money, or else I will come and fetch him, and he shall poke the
fire in your place." Hans went up and said to the landlord, "Thou hast
stolen my money; if thou dost not return it, thou shalt go down to hell
in my place, and wilt look as horrible as I." Then the landlord gave
him the money, and more besides, only begging him to keep it secret,
and Hans was now a rich man.

He set out on his way home to his father, bought himself a shabby
smock-frock to wear, and strolled about making music, for he had learned
to do that while he was with the Devil in hell. There was however, an
old King in that country, before whom he had to play, and the King was
so delighted with his playing, that he promised him his eldest daughter
in marriage. But when she heard that she was to be married to a common
fellow in a smock-frock, she said, "Rather than do that, I would go
into the deepest water." Then the King gave him the youngest, who was
quite willing to do it to please her father, and thus the Devil's sooty
brother got the King's daughter, and when the aged King died, the whole
kingdom likewise.



101 Bearskin

THERE was once a young fellow who enlisted as a soldier, conducted himself
bravely, and was always the foremost when it rained bullets. So long as
the war lasted, all went well, but when peace was made, he received his
dismissal, and the captain said he might go where he liked. His parents
were dead, and he had no longer a home, so he went to his brothers and
begged them to take him in, and keep him until war broke out again. The
brothers, however, were hard-hearted and said, "What can we do with
thee? thou art of no use to us; go and make a living for thyself." The
soldier had nothing left but his gun; he took that on his shoulder, and
went forth into the world. He came to a wide heath, on which nothing
was to be seen but a circle of trees; under these he sat sorrowfully
down, and began to think over his fate. "I have no money," thought he,
"I have learnt no trade but that of fighting, and now that they have made
peace they don't want me any longer; so I see beforehand that I shall
have to starve." All at once he heard a rustling, and when he looked
round, a strange man stood before him, who wore a green coat and looked
right stately, but had a hideous cloven foot.  "I know already what thou
art in need of," said the man; "gold and possessions shall thou have,
as much as thou canst make away with do what thou wilt, but first I
must know if thou art fearless, that I may not bestow my money in vain."
"A soldier and fear -- how can those two things go together?" he answered;
"thou canst put me to the proof." "Very well, then," answered the man,
"look behind thee." The soldier turned round, and saw a large bear,
which came growling towards him. "Oho!" cried the soldier, "I will tickle
thy nose for thee, so that thou shalt soon lose thy fancy for growling,"
and he aimed at the bear and shot it through the muzzle; it fell down and
never stirred again. "I see quite well," said the stranger, "that thou art
not wanting in courage, but there is still another condition which thou
wilt have to fulfil." "If it does not endanger my salvation," replied
the soldier, who knew very well who was standing by him. "If it does,
I'll have nothing to do with it." "Thou wilt look to that for thyself,"
answered Greencoat; "thou shalt for the next seven years neither wash
thyself, nor comb thy beard, nor thy hair, nor cut thy nails, nor say
one paternoster. I will give thee a coat and a cloak, which during this
time thou must wear. If thou diest during these seven years, thou art
mine; if thou remainest alive, thou art free, and rich to boot, for all
the rest of thy life." The soldier thought of the great extremity in
which he now found himself, and as he so often had gone to meet death,
he resolved to risk it now also, and agreed to the terms. The Devil took
off his green coat, gave it to the soldier, and said, "If thou hast this
coat on thy back and puttest thy hand into the pocket, thou wilt always
find it full of money." Then he pulled the skin off the bear and said,
"This shall be thy cloak, and thy bed also, for thereon shalt thou sleep,
and in no other bed shalt thou lie, and because of this apparel shalt
thou be called Bearskin." After this the Devil vanished.

The soldier put the coat on, felt at once in the pocket, and found that
the thing was really true. Then he put on the bearskin and went forth
into the world, and enjoyed himself, refraining from nothing that did
him good and his money harm.  During the first year his appearance was
passable, but during the second he began to look like a monster. His
hair covered nearly the whole of his face, his beard was like a piece
of coarse felt, his fingers had claws, and his face was so covered
with dirt that if cress had been sown on it, it would have come up.
Whosoever saw him, ran away, but as he everywhere gave the poor money
to pray that he might not die during the seven years, and as he paid
well for everything he still always found shelter. In the fourth year,
he entered an inn where the landlord would not receive him, and would
not even let him have a place in the stable, because he was afraid the
horses would be scared. But as Bearskin thrust his hand into his pocket
and pulled out a handful of ducats, the host let himself be persuaded
and gave him a room in an outhouse. Bearskin was, however, obliged to
promise not to let himself be seen, lest the inn should get a bad name.

As Bearskin was sitting alone in the evening, and wishing from the bottom
of his heart that the seven years were over, he heard a loud lamenting in
a neighboring room. He had a compassionate heart, so he opened the door,
and saw an old man weeping bitterly, and wringing his hands. Bearskin
went nearer, but the man sprang to his feet and tried to escape from
him. At last when the man perceived that Bearskin's voice was human he
let himself be prevailed on, and by kind words bearskin succeeded so
far that the old man revealed the cause of his grief.  His property had
dwindled away by degrees, he and his daughters would have to starve,
and he was so poor that he could not pay the innkeeper, and was to be
put in prison. "If that is your only trouble," said Bearskin, "I have
plenty of money." He caused the innkeeper to be brought thither, paid
him and put a purse full of gold into the poor old man's pocket besides.

When the old man saw himself set free from all his troubles he did not
know how to be grateful enough. "Come with me," said he to Bearskin;
"my daughters are all miracles of beauty, choose one of them for thyself
as a wife. When she hears what thou hast done for me, she will not refuse
thee. Thou dost in truth look a little strange, but she will soon put thee
to rights again." This pleased Bearskin well, and he went. When the eldest
saw him she was so terribly alarmed at his face that she screamed and ran
away. The second stood still and looked at him from head to foot, but then
she said, "How can I accept a husband who no longer has a human form? The
shaven bear that once was here and passed itself off for a man pleased me
far better, for at any rate it wore a hussar's dress and white gloves. If
it were nothing but ugliness, I might get used to that." The youngest,
however, said, "Dear father, that must be a good man to have helped you
out of your trouble, so if you have promised him a bride for doing it,
your promise must be kept." It was a pity that Bearskin's face was covered
with dirt and with hair, for if not they might have seen how delighted he
was when he heard these words. He took a ring from his finger, broke it
in two, and gave her one half, the other he kept for himself. He wrote
his name, however, on her half, and hers on his, and begged her to keep
her piece carefully, and then he took his leave and said, "I must still
wander about for three years, and if I do not return then, thou art free,
for I shall be dead. But pray to God to preserve my life."

The poor betrothed bride dressed herself entirely in black, and when she
thought of her future bridegroom, tears came into her eyes. Nothing but
contempt and mockery fell to her lot from her sisters. "Take care," said
the eldest, "if thou givest him thy hand, he will strike his claws into
it." "Beware!" said the second.  "Bears like sweet things, and if he takes
a fancy to thee, he will eat thee up."  "Thou must always do as he likes,"
began the elder again, "or else he will growl."  And the second continued,
"But the wedding will be a merry one, for bears dance well." The bride
was silent, and did not let them vex her. Bearskin, however, travelled
about the world from one place to another, did good where he was able,
and gave generously to the poor that they might pray for him.

At length, as the last day of the seven years dawned, he went once more
out on to the heath, and seated himself beneath the circle of trees. It
was not long before the wind whistled, and the Devil stood before him
and looked angrily at him; then he threw Bearskin his old coat, and
asked for his own green one back.  "We have not got so far as that yet,"
answered Bearskin, "thou must first make me clean." Whether the Devil
liked it or not, he was forced to fetch water, and wash Bearskin, comb
his hair, and cut his nails. After this, he looked like a brave soldier,
and was much handsomer than he had ever been before.

When the Devil had gone away, Bearskin was quite lighthearted. He went
into the town, put on a magnificent velvet coat, seated himself in a
carriage drawn by four white horses, and drove to his bride's house. No
one recognized him, the father took him for a distinguished general,
and led him into the room where his daughters were sitting. He was
forced to place himself between the two eldest, they helped him to
wine, gave him the best pieces of meat, and thought that in all the
world they had never seen a handsomer man. The bride, however, sat
opposite to him in her black dress, and never raised her eyes, nor
spoke a word.  When at length he asked the father if he would give him
one of his daughters to wife, the two eldest jumped up, ran into their
bedrooms to put on splendid dresses, for each of them fancied she was
the chosen one. The stranger, as soon as he was alone with his bride,
brought out his half of the ring, and threw it in a glass of wine which
he reached across the table to her. She took the wine, but when she had
drunk it, and found the half ring lying at the bottom, her heart began to
beat. She got the other half, which she wore on a ribbon round her neck,
joined them, and saw that the two pieces fitted exactly together. Then
said he, "I am thy betrothed bridegroom, whom thou sawest as Bearskin,
but through God's grace I have again received my human form, and have
once more become clean." He went up to her, embraced her, and gave
her a kiss. In the meantime the two sisters came back in full dress,
and when they saw that the handsome man had fallen to the share of the
youngest, and heard that he was Bearskin, they ran out full of anger and
rage. One of them drowned herself in the well, the other hanged herself
on a tree. In the evening, some one knocked at the door, and when the
bridegroom opened it, it was the Devil in his green coat, who said,
"Seest thou, I have now got two souls in the place of thy one!"



102 The Willow-Wren and the Bear

ONCE in summer-time the bear and the wolf were walking in the forest,
and the bear heard a bird singing so beautifully that he said, "Brother
wolf, what bird is it that sings so well?" "That is the King of birds,"
said the wolf, "before whom we must bow down." It was, however, in
reality the willow-wren (Zaunkönig). "If that's the case," said the
bear, "I should very much like to see his royal palace; come, take me
thither." "That is not done quite as you seem to think," said the wolf;
"you must wait until the Queen comes." Soon afterwards, the Queen arrived
with some food in her beak, and the lord King came too, and they began
to feed their young ones. The bear would have liked to go at once,
but the wolf held him back by the sleeve, and said, "No, you must wait
until the lord and lady Queen have gone away again." So they observed
the hole in which was the nest, and trotted away. The bear, however,
could not rest until he had seen the royal palace, and when a short time
had passed, again went to it. The King and Queen had just flown out,
so he peeped in and saw five or six young ones lying in it. "Is that the
royal palace?" cried the bear; "it is a wretched palace, and you are not
King's children, you are disreputable children!" When the young wrens
heard that, they were frightfully angry, and screamed, "No, that we are
not! Our parents are honest people! Bear, thou wilt have to pay for that!"

The bear and the wolf grew uneasy, and turned back and went into their
holes.  The young willow-wrens, however, continued to cry and scream, and
when their parents again brought food they said, "We will not so much as
touch one fly's leg, no, not if we were dying of hunger, until you have
settled whether we are respectable children or not; the bear has been
here and has insulted us!" Then the old King said, "Be easy, he shall
be punished," and he at once flew with the Queen to the bear's cave,
and called in, "Old Growler, why hast thou insulted my children? Thou
shalt suffer for it we will punish thee by a bloody war." Thus war was
announced to the Bear, and all four-footed animals were summoned to
take part in it, oxen, asses, cows, deer, and every other animal the
earth contained.  And the willow-wren summoned everything which flew
in the air, not only birds, large and small, but midges, and hornets,
bees and flies had to come.

When the time came for the war to begin, the willow-wren sent out spies
to discover who was the enemy's commander-in-chief. The gnat, who was
the most crafty, flew into the forest where the enemy was assembled,
and hid herself beneath a leaf of the tree where the watchword was to be
given. There stood the bear, and he called the fox before him and said,
"Fox, thou art the most cunning of all animals, thou shalt be general
and lead us." "Good," said the fox, "but what signal shall we agree
upon?" No one knew that, so the fox said, "I have a fine long bushy tail,
which almost looks like a plume of red feathers. When I lift my tail up
quite high, all is going well, and you must charge; but if I let it hang
down, run away as fast as you can." When the gnat had heard that, she
flew away again, and revealed everything, with the greatest minuteness,
to the willow-wren.  When day broke, and the battle was to begin, all
the four-footed animals came running up with such a noise that the earth
trembled. The willow-wren also came flying through the air with his army
with such a humming, and whirring, and swarming that every one was uneasy
and afraid, and on both sides they advanced against each other. But the
willow-wren sent down the hornet, with orders to get beneath the fox's
tail, and sting with all his might. When the fox felt the first sting,
he started so that he drew up one leg, with the pain, but he bore it,
and still kept his tail high in the air; at the second sting, he was
forced to put it down for a moment; at the third, he could hold out no
longer, and screamed out and put his tail between his legs. When the
animals saw that, they thought all was lost, and began to fly, each into
his hole and the birds had won the battle.

Then the King and Queen flew home to their children and cried,
"Children, rejoice, eat and drink to your heart's content, we have won
the battle!" But the young wrens said, "We will not eat yet, the bear
must come to the nest, and beg for pardon and say that we are honorable
children, before we will do that." Then the willow-wren flew to the bear's
hole and cried, "Growler, thou art to come to the nest to my children,
and beg their pardon, or else every rib of thy body shall be broken." So
the bear crept thither in the greatest fear, and begged their pardon. And
now at last the young wrens were satisfied, and sat down together and
ate and drank, and made merry till quite late into the night.



103 Sweet Porridge

THERE was a poor but good little girl who lived alone with her mother,
and they no longer had anything to eat. So the child went into the
forest, and there an aged woman met her who was aware of her sorrow,
and presented her with a little pot, which when she said, "Cook, little
pot, cook," would cook good, sweet porridge, and when she said, "Stop,
little pot," it ceased to cook. The girl took the pot home to her mother,
and now they were freed from their poverty and hunger, and ate sweet
porridge as often as they chose. Once on a time when the girl had gone
out, her mother said, "Cook, little pot, cook." And it did cook and she
ate till she was satisfied, and then she wanted the pot to stop cooking,
but did not know the word. So it went on cooking and the porridge rose
over the edge, and still it cooked on until the kitchen and whole house
were full, and then the next house, and then the whole street, just as
if it wanted to satisfy the hunger of the whole world, and there was
the greatest distress, but no one knew how to stop it. At last when
only one single house remained, the child came home and just said,
"Stop, little pot," and it stopped and gave up cooking, and whosoever
wished to return to the town had to eat his way back.



104 Wise Folks

ONE day a peasant took his good hazel-stick out of the corner and said
to his wife, "Trina, I am going across country, and shall not return
for three days. If during that time the cattle-dealer should happen to
call and want to buy our three cows, you may strike a bargain at once,
but not unless you can get two hundred thalers for them; nothing less,
do you hear?" "For heaven's sake just go in peace," answered the woman,
"I will manage that." "You, indeed," said the man.  "You once fell on
your head when you were a little child, and that affects you even now;
but let me tell you this, if you do anything foolish, I will make your
back black and blue, and not with paint, I assure you, but with the
stick which I have in my hand, and the colouring shall last a whole year,
you may rely on that."  And having said that, the man went on his way.

Next morning the cattle-dealer came, and the woman had no need to say many
words to him. When he had seen the cows and heard the price, he said,
"I am quite willing to give that, honestly speaking, they are worth
it. I will take the beasts away with me at once." He unfastened their
chains and drove them out of the byre, but just as he was going out of
the yard-door, the woman clutched him by the sleeve and said, "You must
give me the two hundred thalers now, or I cannot let the cows go." "True,"
answered the man, "but I have forgotten to buckle on my money-belt. Have
no fear, however, you shall have security for my paying. I will take two
cows with me and leave one, and then you will have a good pledge." The
woman saw the force of this, and let the man go away with the cows,
and thought to herself, "How pleased Hans will be when he finds how
cleverly I have managed it!" The peasant came home on the third day as
he had said he would, and at once inquired if the cows were sold? "Yes,
indeed, dear Hans," answered the woman, "and as you said, for two hundred
thalers. They are scarcely worth so much, but the man took them without
making any objection." "Where is the money?" asked the peasant. "Oh, I
have not got the money," replied the woman; "he had happened to forget his
money-belt, but he will soon bring it, and he left good security behind
him." "What kind of security?"  asked the man. "One of the three cows,
which he shall not have until he has paid for the other two. I have
managed very cunningly, for I have kept the smallest, which eats the
least." The man was enraged and lifted up his stick, and was just going
to give her the beating he had promised her. Suddenly he let the stick
fail and said, "You are the stupidest goose that ever waddled on God's
earth, but I am sorry for you. I will go out into the highways and wait
for three days to see if I find anyone who is still stupider than you. If
I succeed in doing so, you shall go scot-free, but if I do not find him,
you shall receive your well-deserved reward without any discount."

He went out into the great highways, sat down on a stone, and waited for
what would happen. Then he saw a peasant's waggon coming towards him,
and a woman was standing upright in the middle of it, instead of sitting
on the bundle of straw which was lying beside her, or walking near the
oxen and leading them.  The man thought to himself, "That is certainly
one of the kind I am in search of," and jumped up and ran backwards and
forwards in front of the waggon like one who is not very wise. "What do
you want, my friend?" said the woman to him; "I don't know you, where
do you come from?" "I have fallen down from heaven," replied the man,
"and don't know how to get back again, couldn't you drive me up?" "No,"
said the woman, "I don't know the way, but if you come from heaven you can
surely tell me how my husband, who has been there these three years is.
You must have seen him?" "Oh, yes, I have seen him, but all men can't
get on well. He keeps sheep, and the sheep give him a great deal to
do. They run up the mountains and lose their way in the wilderness,
and he has to run after them and drive them together again. His clothes
are all torn to pieces too, and will soon fall off his body. There is
no tailor there, for Saint Peter won't let any of them in, as you know
by the story." "Who would have thought it?" cried the woman, "I tell you
what, I will fetch his Sunday coat which is still hanging at home in the
cupboard, he can wear that and look respectable. You will be so kind as
to take it with you." "That won't do very well," answered the peasant;
"people are not allowed to take clothes into Heaven, they are taken
away from one at the gate."  "Then hark you," said the woman, "I sold
my fine wheat yesterday and got a good lot of money for it, I will send
that to him. If you hide the purse in your pocket, no one will know that
you have it." "If you can't manage it any other way," said the peasant,
"I will do you that favor." "Just sit still where you are," said she,
"and I will drive home and fetch the purse, I shall soon be back again. I
do not sit down on the bundle of straw, but stand up in the waggon,
because it makes it lighter for the cattle." She drove her oxen away,
and the peasant thought, "That woman has a perfect talent for folly,
if she really brings the money, my wife may think herself fortunate,
for she will get no beating." It was not long before she came in a great
hurry with the money, and with her own hands put it in his pocket. Before
she went away, she thanked him again a thousand times for his courtesy.

When the woman got home again, she found her son who had come in from
the field. She told him what unlooked-for things had befallen her,
and then added, "I am truly delighted at having found an opportunity
of sending something to my poor husband. Who would ever have imagined
that he could be suffering for want of anything up in heaven?" The son
was full of astonishment. "Mother," said he, "it is not every day that
a man comes from Heaven in this way, I will go out immediately, and see
if he is still to be found; he must tell me what it is like up there,
and how the work is done." He saddled the horse and rode off with all
speed. He found the peasant who was sitting under a willow-tree, and was
just going to count the money in the purse. "Have you seen the man who
has fallen down from Heaven?" cried the youth to him. "Yes," answered
the peasant, "he has set out on his way back there, and has gone up
that hill, from whence it will be rather nearer; you could still catch
him up, if you were to ride fast." "Alas," said the youth, "I have been
doing tiring work all day, and the ride here has completely worn me out;
you know the man, be so kind as to get on my horse, and go and persuade
him to come here." "Aha!" thought the peasant, "here is another who has
no wick in his lamp!" "Why should I not do you this favor?"  said he,
and mounted the horse and rode off in a quick trot. The youth remained
sitting there till night fell, but the peasant never came back. "The
man from Heaven must certainly have been in a great hurry, and would
not turn back," thought he, "and the peasant has no doubt given him the
horse to take to my father." He went home and told his mother what had
happened, and that he had sent his father the horse so that he might not
have to be always running about.  "Thou hast done well," answered she,
"thy legs are younger than his, and thou canst go on foot."

When the peasant got home, he put the horse in the stable beside the
cow which he had as a pledge, and then went to his wife and said,
"Trina, as your luck would have it, I have found two who are still
sillier fools than you; this time you escape without a beating, I will
store it up for another occasion." Then he lighted his pipe, sat down
in his grandfather's chair, and said, "It was a good stroke of business
to get a sleek horse and a great purse full of money into the bargain,
for two lean cows. If stupidity always brought in as much as that,
I would be quite willing to hold it in honor." So thought the peasant,
but you no doubt prefer the simple folks.



105 Stories about Snakes

First Story.

There was once a little child whose mother gave her every afternoon a
small bowl of milk and bread, and the child seated herself in the yard
with it. When she began to eat however, a snake came creeping out of a
crevice in the wall, dipped its little head in the dish, and ate with
her. The child had pleasure in this, and when she was sitting there with
her little dish and the snake did not come at once, she cried,


 "Snake, snake, come swiftly
 Hither come, thou tiny thing,

 Thou shalt have thy crumbs of bread,
 Thou shalt refresh thyself with milk."

Then the snake came in haste, and enjoyed its food. Moreover it showed
gratitude, for it brought the child all kinds of pretty things from its
hidden treasures, bright stones, pearls, and golden playthings. The snake,
however, only drank the milk, and left the bread-crumbs alone. Then one
day the child took its little spoon and struck the snake gently on its
head with it, and said, "Eat the bread-crumbs as well, little thing." The
mother, who was standing in the kitchen, heard the child talking to
someone, and when she saw that she was striking a snake with her spoon,
ran out with a log of wood, and killed the good little creature.

From that time forth, a change came over the child. As long as the snake
had eaten with her, she had grown tall and strong, but now she lost her
pretty rosy cheeks and wasted away. It was not long before the funeral
bird began to cry in the night, and the redbreast to collect little
branches and leaves for a funeral garland, and soon afterwards the child
lay on her bier.

Second Story.

An orphan child was sitting on the town walls spinning, when she saw
a snake coming out of a hole low down in the wall. Swiftly she spread
out beside this one of the blue silk handkerchiefs which snakes have
such a strong liking for, and which are the only things they will
creep on. As soon as the snake saw it, it went back, then returned,
bringing with it a small golden crown, laid it on the handkerchief,
and then went away again. The girl took up the crown, it glittered and
was of delicate golden filagree work. It was not long before the snake
came back for the second time, but when it no longer saw the crown, it
crept up to the wall, and in its grief smote its little head against it
as long as it had strength to do so, until at last it lay there dead. If
the girl had but left the crown where it was, the snake would certainly
have brought still more of its treasures out of the hole.

Third Story.

A snake cries, "Huhu, huhu." A child says, "Come out." The snake comes
out, then the child inquires about her little sister: "Hast thou not seen
little Red-stockings?" The snake says, "No." "Neither have I." "Then I
am like you.  Huhu, huhu, huhu."



106 The Poor Miller's Boy and the Cat

In a certain mill lived an old miller who had neither wife nor child,
and three apprentices served under him. As they had been with him
several years, he one day said to them, "I am old, and want to sit in
the chimney-corner, go out, and whichsoever of you brings me the best
horse home, to him will I give the mill, and in return for it he shall
take care of me till my death." The third of the boys was, however,
the drudge, who was looked on as foolish by the others; they begrudged
the mill to him, and afterwards he would not have it. Then all three
went out together, and when they came to the village, the two said to
stupid Hans, "Thou mayst just as well stay here, as long as thou livest
thou wilt never get a horse." Hans, however, went with them, and when
it was night they came to a cave in which they lay down to sleep. The
two sharp ones waited until Hans had fallen asleep, then they got up,
and went away leaving him where he was.  And they thought they had done
a very clever thing, but it was certain to turn out ill for them. When
the sun arose, and Hans woke up, he was lying in a deep cavern. He looked
around on every side and exclaimed, "Oh, heavens, where am I?" Then he
got up and clambered out of the cave, went into the forest, and thought,
"Here I am quite alone and deserted, how shall I obtain a horse now?"
Whilst he was thus walking full of thought, he met a small tabby-cat
which said quite kindly, "Hans, where are you going?" "Alas, thou canst
not help me." "I well know your desire," said the cat. "You wish to have a
beautiful horse. Come with me, and be my faithful servant for seven years
long, and then I will give you one more beautiful than any you have ever
seen in your whole life." "Well, this is a wonderful cat!" thought Hans,
"but I am determined to see if she is telling the truth." So she took him
with her into her enchanted castle, where there were nothing but cats
who were her servants. They leapt nimbly upstairs and downstairs, and
were merry and happy. In the evening when they sat down to dinner, three
of them had to make music. One played the bassoon, the other the fiddle,
and the third put the trumpet to his lips, and blew out his cheeks as much
as he possibly could. When they had dined, the table was carried away,
and the cat said, "Now, Hans, come and dance with me." "No," said he,
"I won't dance with a pussy cat. I have never done that yet." "Then
take him to bed," said she to the cats. So one of them lighted him to
his bed-room, one pulled his shoes off, one his stockings, and at last
one of them blew out the candle. Next morning they returned and helped
him out of bed, one put his stockings on for him, one tied his garters,
one brought his shoes, one washed him, and one dried his face with
her tail. "That feels very soft!" said Hans. He, however, had to serve
the cat, and chop some wood every day, and to do that, he had an axe of
silver, and the wedge and saw were of silver and the mallet of copper. So
he chopped the wood small; stayed there in the house and had good meat
and drink, but never saw anyone but the tabby-cat and her servants. Once
she said to him, "Go and mow my meadow, and dry the grass," and gave him
a scythe of silver, and a whetstone of gold, but bade him deliver them
up again carefully. So Hans went thither, and did what he was bidden,
and when he had finished the work, he carried the scythe, whetstone,
and hay to the house, and asked if it was not yet time for her to give
him his reward. "No," said the cat, "you must first do something more
for me of the same kind. There is timber of silver, carpenter's axe,
square, and everything that is needful, all of silver, with these build
me a small house." Then Hans built the small house, and said that he
had now done everything, and still he had no horse. Nevertheless the
seven years had gone by with him as if they were six months. The cat
asked him if he would like to see her horses? "Yes," said Hans. Then she
opened the door of the small house, and when she had opened it, there
stood twelve horses, such horses, so bright and shining, that his heart
rejoiced at the sight of them. And now she gave him to eat and drink,
and said, "Go home, I will not give thee thy horse away with thee; but
in three days' time I will follow thee and bring it." So Hans set out,
and she showed him the way to the mill. She had, however, never once
given him a new coat, and he had been obliged to keep on his dirty old
smock-frock, which he had brought with him, and which during the seven
years had everywhere become too small for him. When he reached home,
the two other apprentices were there again as well, and each of them
certainly had brought a horse with him, but one of them was a blind one,
and the other lame. They asked Hans where his horse was. "It will follow
me in three days' time." Then they laughed and said, "Indeed, stupid Hans,
where wilt thou get a horse?" "It will be a fine one!" Hans went into
the parlour, but the miller said he should not sit down to table, for
he was so ragged and torn, that they would all be ashamed of him if any
one came in. So they gave him a mouthful of food outside, and at night,
when they went to rest, the two others would not let him have a bed,
and at last he was forced to creep into the goose-house, and lie down
on a little hard straw. In the morning when he awoke, the three days
had passed, and a coach came with six horses and they shone so bright
that it was delightful to see them! and a servant brought a seventh as
well, which was for the poor miller's boy. And a magnificent princess
alighted from the coach and went into the mill, and this princess was
the little tabby-cat whom poor Hans had served for seven years. She asked
the miller where the miller's boy and drudge was? Then the miller said,
"We cannot have him here in the mill, for he is so ragged; he is lying
in the goose-house." Then the King's daughter said that they were to
bring him immediately. So they brought him out, and he had to hold his
little smock-frock together to cover himself. The servants unpacked
splendid garments, and washed him and dressed him, and when that was
done, no King could have looked more handsome. Then the maiden desired
to see the horses which the other apprentices had brought home with
them, and one of them was blind and the other lame. So she ordered the
servant to bring the seventh horse, and when the miller saw it, he said
that such a horse as that had never yet entered his yard. "And that is
for the third miller's boy," said she.  "Then he must have the mill,"
said the miller, but the King's daughter said that the horse was there,
and that he was to keep his mill as well, and took her faithful Hans
and set him in the coach, and drove away with him. They first drove to
the little house which he had built with the silver tools, and behold
it was a great castle, and everything inside it was of silver and gold;
and then she married him, and he was rich, so rich that he had enough
for all the rest of his life. After this, let no one ever say that anyone
who is silly can never become a person of importance.



107 The Two Travellers

Hill and vale do not come together, but the children of men do, good and
bad. In this way a shoemaker and a tailor once met with each other in
their travels. The tailor was a handsome little fellow who was always
merry and full of enjoyment.  He saw the shoemaker coming towards him
from the other side, and as he observed by his bag what kind of a trade
he plied, he sang a little mocking song to him,


 "Sew me the seam,
 Draw me the thread,
 Spread it over with pitch,
 Knock the nail on the head."

The shoemaker, however, could not endure a joke; he pulled a face as if
he had drunk vinegar, and made a gesture as if he were about to seize
the tailor by the throat. But the little fellow began to laugh, reached
him his bottle, and said, "No harm was meant, take a drink, and swallow
your anger down." The shoemaker took a very hearty drink, and the storm
on his face began to clear away. He gave the bottle back to the tailor,
and said, "I spoke civilly to you; one speaks well after much drinking,
but not after much thirst. Shall we travel together?" "All right,"
answered the tailor, "if only it suits you to go into a big town where
there is no lack of work." "That is just where I want to go," answered the
shoemaker. "In a small nest there is nothing to earn, and in the country,
people like to go barefoot." They travelled therefore onwards together,
and always set one foot before the other like a weasel in the snow.

Both of them had time enough, but little to bite and to break. When they
reached a town they went about and paid their respects to the tradesmen,
and because the tailor looked so lively and merry, and had such pretty
red cheeks, every one gave him work willingly, and when luck was good
the master's daughters gave him a kiss beneath the porch, as well. When
he again fell in with the shoemaker, the tailor had always the most in
his bundle. The ill-tempered shoemaker made a wry face, and thought,
"The greater the rascal the more the luck," but the tailor began to laugh
and to sing, and shared all he got with his comrade. If a couple of pence
jingled in his pockets, he ordered good cheer, and thumped the table in
his joy till the glasses danced, and it was lightly come, lightly go,
with him.

When they had travelled for some time, they came to a great forest
through which passed the road to the capital. Two foot-paths, however,
led through it, one of which was a seven days' journey, and the other only
two, but neither of the travellers knew which way was the short one. They
seated themselves beneath an oak-tree, and took counsel together how they
should forecast, and for how many days they should provide themselves
with bread. The shoemaker said, "One must look before one leaps, I will
take with me bread for a week."  "What!" said the tailor, "drag bread for
seven days on one's back like a beast of burden, and not be able to look
about. I shall trust in God, and not trouble myself about anything! The
money I have in my pocket is as good in summer as in winter, but in hot
weather bread gets dry, and mouldy into the bargain; even my coat does
not go as far as it might. Besides, why should we not find the right
way? Bread for two days, and that's enough." Each, therefore, bought
his own bread, and then they tried their luck in the forest.

It was as quiet there as in a church. No wind stirred, no brook murmured,
no bird sang, and through the thickly-leaved branches no sunbeam forced
its way.  The shoemaker spoke never a word, the heavy bread weighed
down his back until the perspiration streamed down his cross and gloomy
face. The tailor, however, was quite merry, he jumped about, whistled
on a leaf, or sang a song, and thought to himself, "God in heaven must
be pleased to see me so happy."

This lasted two days, but on the third the forest would not come to
an end, and the tailor had eaten up all his bread, so after all his
heart sank down a yard deeper. In the meantime he did not lose courage,
but relied on God and on his luck. On the third day he lay down in the
evening hungry under a tree, and rose again next morning hungry still;
so also passed the fourth day, and when the shoemaker seated himself on a
fallen tree and devoured his dinner, the tailor was only a looker-on. If
he begged for a little piece of bread the other laughed mockingly, and
said, "Thou hast always been so merry, now thou canst try for once what
it is to be sad: the birds which sing too early in the morning are struck
by the hawk in the evening," In short he was pitiless. But on the fifth
morning the poor tailor could no longer stand up, and was hardly able to
utter one word for weakness; his cheeks were white, and his eyes red. Then
the shoemaker said to him, "I will give thee a bit of bread to-day, but
in return for it, I will put out thy right eye." The unhappy tailor who
still wished to save his life, could not do it in any other way; he wept
once more with both eyes, and then held them out, and the shoemaker,
who had a heart of stone, put out his right eye with a sharp knife.
The tailor called to remembrance what his mother had formerly said to
him when he had been eating secretly in the pantry. "Eat what one can,
and suffer what one must." When he had consumed his dearly-bought bread,
he got on his legs again, forgot his misery and comforted himself with
the thought that he could always see enough with one eye. But on the sixth
day, hunger made itself felt again, and gnawed him almost to the heart. In
the evening he fell down by a tree, and on the seventh morning he could
not raise himself up for faintness, and death was close at hand. Then
said the shoemaker, "I will show mercy and give thee bread once more, but
thou shalt not have it for nothing, I shall put out thy other eye for it."
And now the tailor felt how thoughtless his life had been, prayed to God
for forgiveness, and said, "Do what thou wilt, I will bear what I must,
but remember that our Lord God does not always look on passively, and
that an hour will come when the evil deed which thou hast done to me,
and which I have not deserved of thee, will be requited. When times were
good with me, I shared what I had with thee. My trade is of that kind
that each stitch must always be exactly like the other. If I no longer
have my eyes and can sew no more I must go a-begging. At any rate do
not leave me here alone when I am blind, or I shall die of hunger."
The shoemaker, however, who had driven God out of his heart, took the
knife and put out his left eye. Then he gave him a bit of bread to eat,
held out a stick to him, and drew him on behind him.

When the sun went down, they got out of the forest, and before them
in the open country stood the gallows. Thither the shoemaker guided
the blind tailor, and then left him alone and went his way. Weariness,
pain, and hunger made the wretched man fall asleep, and he slept the
whole night. When day dawned he awoke, but knew not where he lay. Two
poor sinners were hanging on the gallows, and a crow sat on the head of
each of them. Then one of the men who had been hanged began to speak,
and said, "Brother, art thou awake?" "Yes, I am awake," answered the
second. "Then I will tell thee something," said the first; "the dew which
this night has fallen down over us from the gallows, gives every one who
washes himself with it his eyes again. If blind people did but know this,
how many would regain their sight who do not believe that to be possible."

When the tailor heard that, he took his pocket-handkerchief, pressed it
on the grass, and when it was moist with dew, washed the sockets of his
eyes with it.  Immediately was fulfilled what the man on the gallows had
said, and a couple of healthy new eyes filled the sockets. It was not
long before the tailor saw the sun rise behind the mountains; in the
plain before him lay the great royal city with its magnificent gates
and hundred towers, and the golden balls and crosses which were on the
spires began to shine. He could distinguish every leaf on the trees, saw
the birds which flew past, and the midges which danced in the air. He
took a needle out of his pocket, and as he could thread it as well as
ever he had done, his heart danced with delight. He threw himself on his
knees, thanked God for the mercy he had shown him, and said his morning
prayer. He did not forget also to pray for the poor sinners who were
hanging there swinging against each other in the wind like the pendulums
of clocks. Then he took his bundle on his back and soon forgot the pain
of heart he had endured, and went on his way singing and whistling.

The first thing he met was a brown foal running about the fields at
large. He caught it by the mane, and wanted to spring on it and ride
into the town. The foal, however, begged to be set free. "I am still
too young," it said, "even a light tailor such as thou art would break
my back in two let me go till I have grown strong. A time may perhaps
come when I may reward thee for it." "Run off," said the tailor, "I see
thou art still a giddy thing." He gave it a touch with a switch over its
back, whereupon it kicked up its hind legs for joy, leapt over hedges
and ditches, and galloped away into the open country.

But the little tailor had eaten nothing since the day before. "The
sun to be sure fills my eyes," said he, "but the bread does not fill
my mouth. The first thing that comes across me and is even half edible
will have to suffer for it." In the meantime a stork stepped solemnly
over the meadow towards him. "Halt, halt!"  cried the tailor, and
seized him by the leg. "I don't know if thou art good to eat or not,
but my hunger leaves me no great choice. I must cut thy head off, and
roast thee." "Don't do that," replied the stork; "I am a sacred bird
which brings mankind great profit, and no one does me an injury. Leave
me my life, and I may do thee good in some other way." "Well, be off,
Cousin Longlegs," said the tailor. The stork rose up, let its long legs
hang down, and flew gently away.

"What's to be the end of this?" said the tailor to himself at last,
"my hunger grows greater and greater, and my stomach more and more
empty. Whatsoever comes in my way now is lost." At this moment he saw a
couple of young ducks which were on a pond come swimming towards him. "You
come just at the right moment," said he, and laid hold of one of them
and was about to wring its neck.  On this an old duck which was hidden
among the reeds, began to scream loudly, and swam to him with open beak,
and begged him urgently to spare her dear children. "Canst thou not
imagine," said she, "how thy mother would mourn if any one wanted to
carry thee off, and give thee thy finishing stroke?" "Only be quiet,"
said the good-tempered tailor, "thou shalt keep thy children," and put
the prisoner back into the water.

When he turned round, he was standing in front of an old tree which was
partly hollow, and saw some wild bees flying in and out of it. "There
I shall at once find the reward of my good deed," said the tailor,
"the honey will refresh me." But the Queen-bee came out, threatened
him and said, "If thou touchest my people, and destroyest my nest, our
stings shall pierce thy skin like ten thousand red-hot needles. But if
thou wilt leave us in peace and go thy way, we will do thee a service
for it another time."

The little tailor saw that here also nothing was to be done. "Three
dishes empty and nothing on the fourth is a bad dinner!" He dragged
himself therefore with his starved-out stomach into the town, and as it
was just striking twelve, all was ready-cooked for him in the inn, and he
was able to sit down at once to dinner.  When he was satisfied he said,
"Now I will get to work." He went round the town, sought a master, and
soon found a good situation. As, however, he had thoroughly learnt his
trade, it was not long before he became famous, and every one wanted to
have his new coat made by the little tailor, whose importance increased
daily. "I can go no further in skill," said he, "and yet things improve
every day." At last the King appointed him court-tailor.

But how things do happen in the world! On the very same day his former
comrade the shoemaker also became court-shoemaker. When the latter caught
sight of the tailor, and saw that he had once more two healthy eyes,
his conscience troubled him. "Before he takes revenge on me," thought
he to himself, "I must dig a pit for him." He, however, who digs a pit
for another, falls into it himself. In the evening when work was over
and it had grown dusk, he stole to the King and said, "Lord King, the
tailor is an arrogant fellow and has boasted that he will get the gold
crown back again which was lost in ancient times." "That would please me
very much," said the King, and he caused the tailor to be brought before
him next morning, and ordered him to get the crown back again, or to
leave the town for ever. "Oho!" thought the tailor, "a rogue gives more
than he has got. If the surly King wants me to do what can be done by no
one, I will not wait till morning, but will go out of the town at once,
to-day." He packed up his bundle, therefore, but when he was without the
gate he could not help being sorry to give up his good fortune, and turn
his back on the town in which all had gone so well with him. He came to
the pond where he had made the acquaintance of the ducks; at that very
moment the old one whose young ones he had spared, was sitting there by
the shore, pluming herself with her beak. She knew him again instantly,
and asked why he was hanging his head so? "Thou wilt not be surprised
when thou hearest what has befallen me," replied the tailor, and told
her his fate. "If that be all," said the duck, "we can help thee. The
crown fell into the water, and lies down below at the bottom; we will
soon bring it up again for thee. In the meantime just spread out thy
handkerchief on the bank." She dived down with her twelve young ones,
and in five minutes she was up again and sat with the crown resting on
her wings, and the twelve young ones were swimming round about and had
put their beaks under it, and were helping to carry it. They swam to
the shore and put the crown on the handkerchief. No one can imagine how
magnificent the crown was; when the sun shone on it, it gleamed like a
hundred thousand carbuncles. The tailor tied his handkerchief together
by the four corners, and carried it to the King, who was full of joy,
and put a gold chain round the tailor's neck.

When the shoemaker saw that one stroke had failed, he contrived a second,
and went to the King and said, "Lord King, the tailor has become insolent
again; he boasts that he will copy in wax the whole of the royal palace,
with everything that pertains to it, loose or fast, inside and out." The
King sent for the tailor and ordered him to copy in wax the whole of the
royal palace, with everything that pertained to it, movable or immovable,
within and without, and if he did not succeed in doing this, or if so
much as one nail on the wall were wanting, he should be imprisoned for
his whole life under ground.

The tailor thought, "It gets worse and worse! No one can endure that?" and
threw his bundle on his back, and went forth. When he came to the hollow
tree, he sat down and hung his head. The bees came flying out, and the
Queen-bee asked him if he had a stiff neck, since he held his head so
awry? "Alas, no," answered the tailor, "something quite different weighs
me down," and he told her what the King had demanded of him. The bees
began to buzz and hum amongst themselves, and the Queen-bee said, "Just
go home again, but come back to-morrow at this time, and bring a large
sheet with you, and then all will be well." So he turned back again, but
the bees flew to the royal palace and straight into it through the open
windows, crept round about into every corner, and inspected everything
most carefully. Then they hurried back and modelled the palace in wax
with such rapidity that any one looking on would have thought it was
growing before his eyes. By the evening all was ready, and when the
tailor came next morning, the whole of the splendid building was there,
and not one nail in the wall or tile of the roof was wanting, and it
was delicate withal, and white as snow, and smelt sweet as honey. The
tailor wrapped it carefully in his cloth and took it to the King, who
could not admire it enough, placed it in his largest hall, and in return
for it presented the tailor with a large stone house.

The shoemaker, however, did not give up, but went for the third time to
the King and said, "Lord King, it has come to the tailor's ears that no
water will spring up in the court-yard of the castle, and he has boasted
that it shall rise up in the midst of the court-yard to a man's height
and be clear as crystal." Then the King ordered the tailor to be brought
before him and said, "If a stream of water does not rise in my court-yard
by to-morrow as thou hast promised, the executioner shall in that very
place make thee shorter by the head." The poor tailor did not take long
to think about it, but hurried out to the gate, and because this time it
was a matter of life and death to him, tears rolled down his face. Whilst
he was thus going forth full of sorrow, the foal to which he had formerly
given its liberty, and which had now become a beautiful chestnut horse,
came leaping towards him. "The time has come," it said to the tailor,
"when I can repay thee for thy good deed. I know already what is needful
to thee, but thou shalt soon have help; get on me, my back can carry
two such as thou." The tailor's courage came back to him; he jumped up
in one bound, and the horse went full speed into the town, and right
up to the court-yard of the castle. It galloped as quick as lightning
thrice round it, and at the third time it fell violently down. At the
same instant, however, there was a terrific clap of thunder, a fragment
of earth in the middle of the court-yard sprang like a cannon-ball into
the air, and over the castle, and directly after it a jet of water rose
as high as a man on horseback, and the water was as pure as crystal,
and the sunbeams began to dance on it. When the King saw that he arose
in amazement, and went and embraced the tailor in the sight of all men.

But good fortune did not last long. The King had daughters in plenty,
one still prettier than the other, but he had no son. So the malicious
shoemaker betook himself for the fourth time to the King, and said,
"Lord King, the tailor has not given up his arrogance. He has now boasted
that if he liked, he could cause a son to be brought to the Lord king
through the air." The King commanded the tailor to be summoned, and
said, "If thou causest a son to be brought to me within nine days, thou
shalt have my eldest daughter to wife." "The reward is indeed great,"
thought the little tailor; "one would willingly do something for it,
but the cherries grow too high for me, if I climb for them, the bough
will break beneath me, and I shall fall."

He went home, seated himself cross-legged on his work-table, and thought
over what was to be done. "It can't be managed," cried he at last,
"I will go away; after all I can't live in peace here." He tied up
his bundle and hurried away to the gate. When he got to the meadow,
he perceived his old friend the stork, who was walking backwards and
forwards like a philosopher. Sometimes he stood still, took a frog into
close consideration, and at length swallowed it down. The stork came to
him and greeted him. "I see," he began, "that thou hast thy pack on thy
back. Why art thou leaving the town?" The tailor told him what the King
had required of him, and how he could not perform it, and lamented his
misfortune.  "Don't let thy hair grow grey about that," said the stork,
"I will help thee out of thy difficulty. For a long time now, I have
carried the children in swaddling-clothes into the town, so for once
in a way I can fetch a little prince out of the well. Go home and be
easy. In nine days from this time repair to the royal palace, and there
will I come." The little tailor went home, and at the appointed time
was at the castle. It was not long before the stork came flying thither
and tapped at the window. The tailor opened it, and cousin Longlegs
came carefully in, and walked with solemn steps over the smooth marble
pavement. He had, moreover, a baby in his beak that was as lovely as an
angel, and stretched out its little hands to the Queen. The stork laid
it in her lap, and she caressed it and kissed it, and was beside herself
with delight. Before the stork flew away, he took his travelling bag
off his back and handed it over to the Queen. In it there were little
paper parcels with colored sweetmeats, and they were divided amongst
the little princesses. The eldest, however, had none of them, but got
the merry tailor for a husband. "It seems to me," said he, "just as if I
had won the highest prize. My mother was if right after all, she always
said that whoever trusts in God and only has good luck, can never fail."

The shoemaker had to make the shoes in which the little tailor danced
at the wedding festival, after which he was commanded to quit the town
for ever. The road to the forest led him to the gallows. Worn out with
anger, rage, and the heat of the day, he threw himself down. When he
had closed his eyes and was about to sleep, the two crows flew down from
the heads of the men who were hanging there, and pecked his eyes out. In
his madness he ran into the forest and must have died there of hunger,
for no one has ever either seen him again or heard of him.



108 Hans the Hedgehog

THERE was once a countryman who had money and land in plenty, but how rich
soever he was, one thing was still wanting in his happiness he had no
children. Often when he went into the town with the other peasants they
mocked him and asked why he had no children. At last he became angry,
and when he got home he said, "I will have a child, even if it be a
hedgehog." Then his wife had a child, that was a hedgehog in the upper
part of his body, and a boy in the lower, and when she saw the child,
she was terrified, and said, "See, there thou hast brought ill-luck on
us." Then said the man, "What can be done now? The boy must be christened,
but we shall not be able to get a godfather for him." The woman said,
"And we cannot call him anything else but Hans the Hedgehog."

When he was christened, the parson said, "He cannot go into any ordinary
bed because of his spikes." So a little straw was put behind the stove,
and Hans the Hedgehog was laid on it. His mother could not suckle him,
for he would have pricked her with his quills. So he lay there behind
the stove for eight years, and his father was tired of him and thought,
"If he would but die!" He did not die, however, but remained lying
there. Now it happened that there was a fair in the town, and the peasant
was about to go to it, and asked his wife what he should bring back with
him for her. "A little meat and a couple of white rolls which are wanted
for the house," said she. Then he asked the servant, and she wanted a
pair of slippers and some stockings with clocks. At last he said also,
"And what wilt thou have, Hans my Hedgehog?" "Dear father," he said,
"do bring me bagpipes." When, therefore, the father came home again,
he gave his wife what he had bought for her; meat and white rolls,
and then he gave the maid the slippers, and the stockings with clocks;
and, lastly, he went behind the stove, and gave Hans the Hedgehog the
bagpipes. And when Hans the Hedgehog had the bagpipes, he said, "Dear
father, do go to the forge and get the cock shod, and then I will ride
away, and never come back again." On this, the father was delighted to
think that he was going to get rid of him, and had the cock shod for him,
and when it was done, Hans the Hedgehog got on it, and rode away, but took
swine and asses with him which he intended to keep in the forest. When
they got there he made the cock fly on to a high tree with him, and there
he sat for many a long year, and watched his asses and swine until the
herd was quite large, and his father knew nothing about him. While he was
sitting in the tree, however, he played his bagpipes, and made music which
was very beautiful.  Once a King came travelling by who had lost his way
and heard the music. He was astonished at it, and sent his servant forth
to look all round and see from whence this music came. He spied about,
but saw nothing but a little animal sitting up aloft on the tree, which
looked like a cock with a hedgehog on it which made this music. Then the
King told the servant he was to ask why he sat there, and if he knew the
road which led to his kingdom. So Hans the Hedgehog descended from the
tree, and said he would show the way if the King would write a bond and
promise him whatever he first met in the royal courtyard as soon as he
arrived at home. Then the King thought, "I can easily do that, Hans the
Hedgehog understands nothing, and I can write what I like." So the King
took pen and ink and wrote something, and when he had done it, Hans the
Hedgehog showed him the way, and he got safely home. But his daughter,
when she saw him from afar, was so overjoyed that she ran to meet him,
and kissed him. Then he remembered Hans the Hedgehog, and told her what
had happened, and that he had been forced to promise whatsoever first met
him when he got home, to a very strange animal which sat on a cock as if
it were a horse, and made beautiful music, but that instead of writing
that he should have what he wanted, he had written that he should not
have it. Thereupon the princess was glad, and said he had done well,
for she never would have gone away with the Hedgehog.

Hans the Hedgehog, however, looked after his asses and pigs, and was
always merry and sat on the tree and played his bagpipes.

Now it came to pass that another King came journeying by with his
attendants and runners, and he also had lost his way, and did not know
how to get home again because the forest was so large. He likewise heard
the beautiful music from a distance, and asked his runner what that could
be, and told him to go and see.  Then the runner went under the tree,
and saw the cock sitting at the top of it, and Hans the Hedgehog on the
cock. The runner asked him what he was about up there? "I am keeping
my asses and my pigs; but what is your desire?" The messenger said that
they had lost their way, and could not get back into their own kingdom,
and asked if he would not show them the way. Then Hans the Hedgehog got
down the tree with the cock, and told the aged King that he would show
him the way, if he would give him for his own whatsoever first met him
in front of his royal palace. The King said, "Yes," and wrote a promise
to Hans the Hedgehog that he should have this. That done, Hans rode on
before him on the cock, and pointed out the way, and the King reached his
kingdom again in safety. When he got to the courtyard, there were great
rejoicings. Now he had an only daughter who was very beautiful; she ran
to meet him, threw her arms round his neck, and was delighted to have
her old father back again. She asked him where in the world he had been
so long. So he told her how he had lost his way, and had very nearly not
come back at all, but that as he was travelling through a great forest,
a creature, half hedgehog, half man, who was sitting astride a cock in
a high tree, and making music, had shown him the way and helped him to
get out, but that in return he had promised him whatsoever first met
him in the royal court-yard, and how that was she herself, which made
him unhappy now. But on this she promised that, for love of her father,
she would willingly go with this Hans if he came.

Hans the Hedgehog, however, took care of his pigs, and the pigs
multiplied until they became so many in number that the whole forest
was filled with them. Then Hans the Hedgehog resolved not to live in the
forest any longer, and sent word to his father to have every stye in the
village emptied, for he was coming with such a great herd that all might
kill who wished to do so. When his father heard that, he was troubled,
for he thought Hans the Hedgehog had died long ago.  Hans the Hedgehog,
however, seated himself on the cock, and drove the pigs before him into
the village, and ordered the slaughter to begin. Ha! but there was a
killing and a chopping that might have been heard two miles off! After
this Hans the Hedgehog said, "Father, let me have the cock shod once more
at the forge, and then I will ride away and never come back as long as
I live." Then the father had the cock shod once more, and was pleased
that Hans the Hedgehog would never return again.

Hans the Hedgehog rode away to the first kingdom. There the King had
commanded that whosoever came mounted on a cock and had bagpipes with him
should be shot at, cut down, or stabbed by everyone, so that he might not
enter the palace. When, therefore, Hans the Hedgehog came riding thither,
they all pressed forward against him with their pikes, but he spurred
the cock and it flew up over the gate in front of the King's window
and lighted there, and Hans cried that the King must give him what he
had promised, or he would take both his life and his daughter's. Then
the King began to speak his daughter fair, and to beg her to go away
with Hans in order to save her own life and her father's. So she dressed
herself in white, and her father gave her a carriage with six horses and
magnificent attendants together with gold and possessions. She seated
herself in the carriage, and placed Hans the Hedgehog beside her with the
cock and the bagpipes, and then they took leave and drove away, and the
King thought he should never see her again. He was however, deceived in
his expectation, for when they were at a short distance from the town,
Hans the Hedgehog took her pretty clothes off, and pierced her with his
hedgehog's skin until she bled all over. "That is the reward of your
falseness," said he, "go your way, I will not have you!" and on that he
chased her home again, and she was disgraced for the rest of her life.

Hans the Hedgehog, however, rode on further on the cock, with his
bagpipes, to the dominions of the second King to whom he had shown the
way. This one, however, had arranged that if any one resembling Hans the
Hedgehog should come, they were to present arms, give him safe conduct,
cry long life to him, and lead him to the royal palace.

But when the King's daughter saw him she was terrified, for he looked
quite too strange. She remembered however, that she could not change
her mind, for she had given her promise to her father. So Hans the
Hedgehog was welcomed by her, and married to her, and had to go with
her to the royal table, and she seated herself by his side, and they
ate and drank. When the evening came and they wanted to go to sleep,
she was afraid of his quills, but he told her she was not to fear,
for no harm would befall her, and he told the old King that he was
to appoint four men to watch by the door of the chamber, and light a
great fire, and when he entered the room and was about to get into bed,
he would creep out of his hedgehog's skin and leave it lying there by
the bedside, and that the men were to run nimbly to it, throw it in the
fire, and stay by it until it was consumed. When the clock struck eleven,
he went into the chamber, stripped off the hedgehog's skin, and left it
lying by the bed. Then came the men and fetched it swiftly, and threw
it in the fire; and when the fire had consumed it, he was delivered,
and lay there in bed in human form, but he was coal-black as if he had
been burnt. The King sent for his physician who washed him with precious
salves, and anointed him, and he became white, and was a handsome young
man. When the King's daughter saw that she was glad, and the next morning
they arose joyfully, ate and drank, and then the marriage was properly
solemnized, and Hans the Hedgehog received the kingdom from the aged King.

When several years had passed he went with his wife to his father,
and said that he was his son. The father, however, declared he had no
son he had never had but one, and he had been born like a hedgehog with
spikes, and had gone forth into the world. Then Hans made himself known,
and the old father rejoiced and went with him to his kingdom.


 My tale is done,
 And away it has run
 To little August's house.



109 The Shroud

There was once a mother who had a little boy of seven years old, who was
so handsome and lovable that no one could look at him without liking him,
and she herself worshipped him above everything in the world. Now it
so happened that he suddenly became ill, and God took him to himself;
and for this the mother could not be comforted, and wept both day and
night. But soon afterwards, when the child had been buried, it appeared by
night in the places where it had sat and played during its life, and if
the mother wept, it wept also, and when morning came it disappeared. As,
however, the mother would not stop crying, it came one night, in the
little white shroud in which it had been laid in its coffin, and with
its wreath of flowers round its head, and stood on the bed at her feet,
and said, "Oh, mother, do stop crying, or I shall never fall asleep in
my coffin, for my shroud will not dry because of all thy tears, which
fall upon it." The mother was afraid when she heard that, and wept no
more. The next night the child came again, and held a little light in
its hand, and said, "Look, mother, my shroud is nearly dry, and I can
rest in my grave." Then the mother gave her sorrow into God's keeping,
and bore it quietly and patiently, and the child came no more, but slept
in its little bed beneath the earth.



110 The Jew Among Thorns

There was once a rich man, who had a servant who served him diligently
and honestly: He was every morning the first out of bed, and the last to
go to rest at night; and, whenever there was a difficult job to be done,
which nobody cared to undertake, he was always the first to set himself
to it. Moreover, he never complained, but was contented with everything,
and always merry.

When a year was ended, his master gave him no wages, for he said to
himself, "That is the cleverest way; for I shall save something, and
he will not go away, but stay quietly in my service." The servant said
nothing, but did his work the second year as he had done it the first;
and when at the end of this, likewise, he received no wages, he made
himself happy, and still stayed on.

When the third year also was past, the master considered, put his hand
in his pocket, but pulled nothing out. Then at last the servant said,
"Master, for three years I have served you honestly, be so good as to
give me what I ought to have, for I wish to leave, and look about me a
little more in the world."

"Yes, my good fellow," answered the old miser; "you have served me
industriously, and, therefore, you shall be cheerfully rewarded;" And
he put his hand into his pocket, but counted out only three farthings,
saying, "There, you have a farthing for each year; that is large and
liberal pay, such as you would have received from few masters."

The honest servant, who understood little about money, put his fortune
into his pocket, and thought, "Ah! now that I have my purse full, why need
I trouble and plague myself any longer with hard work!" So on he went,
up hill and down dale; and sang and jumped to his heart's content. Now
it came to pass that as he was going by a thicket a little man stepped
out, and called to him, "Whither away, merry brother? I see you do
not carry many cares." "Why should I be sad?"  answered the servant;
"I have enough; three years' wages are jingling in my pocket." "How
much is your treasure?" the dwarf asked him. "How much? Three farthings
sterling, all told." "Look here," said the dwarf, "I am a poor needy man,
give me your three farthings; I can work no longer, but you are young,
and can easily earn your bread."

And as the servant had a good heart, and felt pity for the old man, he
gave him the three farthings, saying, "Take them in the name of Heaven,
I shall not be any the worse for it."

Then the little man said, "As I see you have a good heart I grant you
three wishes, one for each farthing, they shall all be fulfilled."

"Aha?" said the servant, "you are one of those who can work wonders! Well,
then, if it is to be so, I wish, first, for a gun, which shall hit
everything that I aim at; secondly, for a fiddle, which when I play
on it, shall compel all who hear it to dance; thirdly, that if I ask a
favor of any one he shall not be able to refuse it."

"All that shall you have," said the dwarf; and put his hand into the bush,
and only think, there lay a fiddle and gun, all ready, just as if they
had been ordered.  These he gave to the servant, and then said to him,
"Whatever you may ask at any time, no man in the world shall be able to
deny you."

"Heart alive! What can one desire more?" said the servant to himself,
and went merrily onwards. Soon afterwards he met a Jew with a long
goat's-beard, who was standing listening to the song of a bird which
was sitting up at the top of a tree. "Good heavens," he was exclaiming,
"that such a small creature should have such a fearfully loud voice! If
it were but mine! If only someone would sprinkle some salt upon its tail!"

"If that is all," said the servant, "the bird shall soon be down here;"
And taking aim he pulled the trigger, and down fell the bird into the
thorn-bushes. "Go, you rogue," he said to the Jew, "and fetch the bird
out for yourself!"

"Oh!" said the Jew, "leave out the rogue, my master, and I will do it
at once. I will get the bird out for myself, as you really have hit
it." Then he lay down on the ground, and began to crawl into the thicket.

When he was fast among the thorns, the good servant's humor so tempted
him that he took up his fiddle and began to play. In a moment the Jew's
legs began to move, and to jump into the air, and the more the servant
fiddled the better went the dance. But the thorns tore his shabby coat
from him, combed his beard, and pricked and plucked him all over the
body. "Oh dear," cried the Jew, "what do I want with your fiddling? Leave
the fiddle alone, master; I do not want to dance."

But the servant did not listen to him, and thought, "You have fleeced
people often enough, now the thorn-bushes shall do the same to you;"
and he began to play over again, so that the Jew had to jump higher
than ever, and scraps of his coat were left hanging on the thorns. "Oh,
woe's me! cried the Jew; I will give the gentleman whatsoever he asks
if only he leaves off fiddling a purse full of gold." "If you are so
liberal," said the servant, "I will stop my music; but this I must say
to your credit, that you dance to it so well that it is quite an art;"
and having taken the purse he went his way.

The Jew stood still and watched the servant quietly until he was far
off and out of sight, and then he screamed out with all his might,
"You miserable musician, you beer-house fiddler! wait till I catch
you alone, I will hunt you till the soles of your shoes fall off! You
ragamuffin! just put five farthings in your mouth, and then you may be
worth three halfpence!" and went on abusing him as fast as he could
speak. As soon as he had refreshed himself a little in this way, and
got his breath again, he ran into the town to the justice.

"My lord judge," he said, "I have come to make a complaint; see how
a rascal has robbed and ill-treated me on the public highway! a stone
on the ground might pity me; my clothes all torn, my body pricked and
scratched, my little all gone with my purse, good ducats, each piece
better than the last; for God's sake let the man be thrown into prison!"

"Was it a soldier," said the judge, "who cut you thus with his
sabre?" "Nothing of the sort!" said the Jew; "it was no sword that he had,
but a gun hanging at his back, and a fiddle at his neck; the wretch may
easily be known."

So the judge sent his people out after the man, and they found the good
servant, who had been going quite slowly along, and they found, too,
the purse with the money upon him. As soon as he was taken before the
judge he said, "I did not touch the Jew, nor take his money; he gave it
to me of his own free will, that I might leave off fiddling because he
could not bear my music." "Heaven defend us!" cried the Jew, "his lies
are as thick as flies upon the wall."

But the judge also did not believe his tale, and said, "This is a bad
defence, no Jew would do that." And because he had committed robbery on
the public highway, he sentenced the good servant to be hanged. As he was
being led away the Jew again screamed after him, "You vagabond! you dog
of a fiddler!  now you are going to receive your well-earned reward!" The
servant walked quietly with the hangman up the ladder, but upon the last
step he turned round and said to the judge, "Grant me just one request
before I die."

"Yes, if you do not ask your life," said the judge. "I do not ask for
life," answered the servant, "but as a last favor let me play once more
upon my fiddle." The Jew raised a great cry of "Murder! murder! for
goodness' sake do not allow it! Do not allow it!" But the judge said,
"Why should I not let him have this short pleasure? it has been granted
to him, and he shall have it." However, he could not have refused on
account of the gift which had been bestowed on the servant.

Then the Jew cried, "Oh! woe's me! tie me, tie me fast!" while the good
servant took his fiddle from his neck, and made ready. As he gave the
first scrape, they all began to quiver and shake, the judge, his clerk,
and the hangman and his men, and the cord fell out of the hand of the
one who was going to tie the Jew fast. At the second scrape all raised
their legs, and the hangman let go his hold of the good servant, and
made himself ready to dance. At the third scrape they all leaped up
and began to dance; the judge and the Jew being the best at jumping.
Soon all who had gathered in the market-place out of curiosity were
dancing with them; old and young, fat and lean, one with another. The
dogs, likewise, which had run there got up on their hind legs and capered
about; and the longer he played, the higher sprang the dancers, so that
they knocked against each other's heads, and began to shriek terribly.

At length the judge cried, quite out of breath, "I will give you your life
if you will only stop fiddling." The good servant thereupon had compassion,
took his fiddle and hung it round his neck again, and stepped down the
ladder. Then he went up to the Jew, who was lying upon the ground panting
for breath, and said, "You rascal, now confess, whence you got the money,
or I will take my fiddle and begin to play again." "I stole it, I stole
it!" cried he; "but you have honestly earned it." So the judge had the
Jew taken to the gallows and hanged as a thief.



111 The Skilful Huntsman

THERE was once a young fellow who had learnt the trade of locksmith,
and told his father he would now go out into the world and seek his
fortune. "Very well," said the father, "I am quite content with that,"
and gave him some money for his journey. So he travelled about and looked
for work. After a time he resolved not to follow the trade of locksmith
any more, for he no longer liked it, but he took a fancy for hunting. Then
there met him in his rambles a huntsman dressed in green, who asked whence
he came and whither he was going? The youth said he was a locksmith's
apprentice, but that the trade no longer pleased him, and he had a liking
for huntsmanship, would he teach it to him? "Oh, yes," said the huntsman,
"if thou wilt go with me." Then the young fellow went with him, bound
himself to him for some years, and learnt the art of hunting. After this
he wished to try his luck elsewhere, and the huntsman gave him nothing
in the way of payment but an air-gun, which had, however, this property,
that it hit its mark without fail whenever he shot with it. Then he set
out and found himself in a very large forest, which he could not get to
the end of in one day. When evening came he seated himself in a high tree
in order to escape from the wild beasts. Towards midnight, it seemed to
him as if a tiny little light glimmered in the distance. Then he looked
down through the branches towards it, and kept well in his mind where
it was.  But in the first place he took off his hat and threw it down in
the direction of the light, so that he might go to the hat as a mark when
he had descended. Then he got down and went to his hat, put it on again
and went straight forwards. The farther he went, the larger the light
grew, and when he got close to it he saw that it was an enormous fire, and
that three giants were sitting by it, who had an ox on the spit, and were
roasting it. Presently one of them said, "I must just taste if the meat
will soon be fit to eat," and pulled a piece off, and was about to put it
in his mouth when the huntsman shot it out of his hand. "Well, really,"
said the giant, "if the wind has not blown the bit out of my hand!" and
helped himself to another.  But when he was just about to bite into it,
the huntsman again shot it away from him. On this the giant gave the one
who was sitting next him a box on the ear, and cried angrily, "Why art
thou snatching my piece away from me?" "I have not snatched it away,"
said the other, "a sharpshooter must have shot it away from thee." The
giant took another piece, but could not, however, keep it in his hand,
for the huntsman shot it out. Then the giant said, "That must be a good
shot to shoot the bit out of one's very mouth, such an one would be useful
to us." And he cried aloud, "Come here, thou sharpshooter, seat thyself
at the fire beside us and eat thy fill, we will not hurt thee; but if
thou wilt not come, and we have to bring thee by force, thou art a lost
man!" On this the youth went up to them and told them he was a skilled
huntsman, and that whatever he aimed at with his gun, he was certain to
hit. Then they said if he would go with them he should be well treated,
and they told him that outside the forest there was a great lake, behind
which stood a tower, and in the tower was imprisoned a lovely princess,
whom they wished very much to carry off. "Yes," said he, "I will soon
get her for you."  Then they added, "But there is still something else,
there is a tiny little dog, which begins to bark directly any one goes
near, and as soon as it barks every one in the royal palace wakens up,
and for this reason we cannot get there; canst thou undertake to shoot
it dead?" "Yes," said he, "that will be a little bit of fun for me."
After this he got into a boat and rowed over the lake, and as soon as he
landed, the little dog came running out, and was about to bark, but the
huntsman took his air-gun and shot it dead. When the giants saw that, they
rejoiced, and thought they already had the King's daughter safe, but the
huntsman wished first to see how matters stood, and told them that they
must stay outside until he called them. Then he went into the castle,
and all was perfectly quiet within, and every one was asleep. When he
opened the door of the first room, a sword was hanging on the wall which
was made of pure silver, and there was a golden star on it, and the name
of the King, and on a table near it lay a sealed letter which he broke
open, and inside it was written that whosoever had the sword could kill
everything which opposed him. So he took the sword from the wall, hung it
at his side and went onwards: then he entered the room where the King's
daughter was lying sleeping, and she was so beautiful that he stood
still and, holding his breath, looked at her. He thought to himself,
"How can I give an innocent maiden into the power of the wild giants,
who have evil in their minds?" He looked about further, and under the
bed stood a pair of slippers, on the right one was her father's name with
a star, and on the left her own name with a star. She wore also a great
neck-kerchief of silk embroidered with gold, and on the right side was
her father's name, and on the left her own, all in golden letters. Then
the huntsman took a pair of scissors and cut the right corner off, and
put it in his knapsack, and then he also took the right slipper with the
King's name, and thrust that in. Now the maiden still lay sleeping, and
she was quite sewn into her night-dress, and he cut a morsel from this
also, and thrust it in with the rest, but he did all without touching
her. Then he went forth and left her lying asleep undisturbed, and
when he came to the gate again, the giants were still standing outside
waiting for him, and expecting that he was bringing the princess. But
he cried to them that they were to come in, for the maiden was already
in their power, that he could not open the gate to them, but there was
a hole through which they must creep. Then the first approached, and
the huntsman wound the giant's hair round his hand, pulled the head in,
and cut it off at one stroke with his sword, and then drew the rest of
him in. He called to the second and cut his head off likewise, and then
he killed the third also, and he was well pleased that he had freed the
beautiful maiden from her enemies, and he cut out their tongues and put
them in his knapsack. Then thought he, "I will go home to my father and
let him see what I have already done, and afterwards I will travel about
the world; the luck which God is pleased to grant me will easily find me."

But when the King in the castle awoke, he saw the three giants lying
there dead.  So he went into the sleeping-room of his daughter, awoke her,
and asked who could have killed the giants? Then said she, "Dear father,
I know not, I have been asleep." But when she arose and would have put
on her slippers, the right one was gone, and when she looked at her
neck-kerchief it was cut, and the right corner was missing, and when she
looked at her night-dress a piece was cut out of it. The King summoned
his whole court together, soldiers and every one else who was there, and
asked who had set his daughter at liberty, and killed the giants? Now
it happened that he had a captain, who was one-eyed and a hideous man,
and he said that he had done it. Then the old King said that as he had
accomplished this, he should marry his daughter. But the maiden said,
"Rather than marry him, dear father, I will go away into the world as far
as my legs can carry me." But the King said that if she would not marry
him she should take off her royal garments and wear peasant's clothing,
and go forth, and that she should go to a potter, and begin a trade in
earthen vessels. So she put off her royal apparel, and went to a potter
and borrowed crockery enough for a stall, and she promised him also that
if she had sold it by the evening, she would pay for it. Then the King
said she was to seat herself in a corner with it and sell it, and he
arranged with some peasants to drive over it with their carts, so that
everything should be broken into a thousand pieces. When therefore the
King's daughter had placed her stall in the street, by came the carts,
and broke all she had into tiny fragments. She began to weep and said,
"Alas, how shall I ever pay for the pots now?" The King had, however,
wished by this to force her to marry the captain; but instead of that,
she again went to the potter, and asked him if he would lend to her once
more. He said, "No," she must first pay for the things she had already
had. Then she went to her father and cried and lamented, and said she
would go forth into the world. Then said he, "I will have a little hut
built for thee in the forest outside, and in it thou shalt stay all
thy life long and cook for every one, but thou shalt take no money for
it." When the hut was ready, a sign was hung on the door whereon was
written, "To-day given, to-morrow sold."  There she remained a long
time, and it was rumored about the world that a maiden was there who
cooked without asking for payment, and that this was set forth on a sign
outside her door. The huntsman heard it likewise, and thought to himself,
"That would suit thee. Thou art poor, and hast no money." So he took his
air-gun and his knapsack, wherein all the things which he had formerly
carried away with him from the castle as tokens of his truthfulness were
still lying, and went into the forest, and found the hut with the sign,
"To-day given, to-morrow sold." He had put on the sword with which he
had cut off the heads of the three giants, and thus entered the hut,
and ordered something to eat to be given to him.  He was charmed with
the beautiful maiden, who was indeed as lovely as any picture. She
asked him whence he came and whither he was going, and he said, "I am
roaming about the world." Then she asked him where he had got the sword,
for that truly her father's name was on it. He asked her if she were
the King's daughter. "Yes," answered she. "With this sword," said he,
"did I cut off the heads of three giants." And he took their tongues out
of his knapsack in proof. Then he also showed her the slipper, and the
corner of the neck-kerchief, and the bit of the night-dress. Hereupon she
was overjoyed, and said that he was the one who had delivered her. On
this they went together to the old King, and fetched him to the hut,
and she led him into her room, and told him that the huntsman was the
man who had really set her free from the giants. And when the aged King
saw all the proofs of this, he could no longer doubt, and said that he
was very glad he knew how everything had happened, and that the huntsman
should have her to wife, on which the maiden was glad at heart. Then she
dressed the huntsman as if he were a foreign lord, and the King ordered
a feast to be prepared. When they went to table, the captain sat on the
left side of the King's daughter, but the huntsman was on the right, and
the captain thought he was a foreign lord who had come on a visit. When
they had eaten and drunk, the old King said to the captain that he would
set before him something which he must guess. "Supposing any one said
that he had killed the three giants and he were asked where the giants'
tongues were, and he were forced to go and look, and there were none in
their heads, how could that happen?" The captain said, "Then they cannot
have had any." "Not so," said the King. "Every animal has a tongue,"
and then he likewise asked what any one would deserve who made such an
answer? The captain replied, "He ought to be torn in pieces." Then the
King said he had pronounced his own sentence, and the captain was put
in prison and then torn in four pieces; but the King's daughter was
married to the huntsman. After this he brought his father and mother,
and they lived with their son in happiness, and after the death of the
old King he received the kingdom.



112 The Flail From Heaven

A countryman was once going out to plough with a pair of oxen. When he got
to the field, both the animals' horns began to grow, and went on growing,
and when he wanted to go home they were so big that the oxen could not get
through the gateway for them. By good luck a butcher came by just then,
and he delivered them over to him, and made the bargain in this way, that
he should take the butcher a measure of turnip-seed, and then the butcher
was to count him out a Brabant thaler for every seed. I call that well
sold! The peasant now went home, and carried the measure of turnip-seed
to him on his back. On the way, however, he lost one seed out of the
bag. The butcher paid him justly as agreed on, and if the peasant had not
lost the seed, he would have had one thaler the more. In the meantime,
when he went on his way back, the seed had grown into a tree which reached
up to the sky. Then thought the peasant, "As thou hast the chance, thou
must just see what the angels are doing up there above, and for once
have them before thine eyes." So he climbed up, and saw that the angels
above were threshing oats, and he looked on. While he was thus watching
them, he observed that the tree on which he was standing, was beginning
to totter; he peeped down, and saw that someone was just going to cut
it down. "If I were to fall down from hence it would be a bad thing,"
thought he, and in his necessity he did not know how to save himself
better than by taking the chaff of the oats which lay there in heaps,
and twisting a rope of it. He likewise snatched a hoe and a flail which
were lying about in heaven, and let himself down by the rope.  But he
came down on the earth exactly in the middle of a deep, deep hole. So it
was a real piece of luck that he had brought the hoe, for he hoed himself
a flight of steps with it, and mounted up, and took the flail with him
as a token of his truth, so that no one could have any doubt of his story.



113 The Two Kings' Children

There was once on a time a King who had a little boy of whom it had been
foretold that he should be killed by a stag when he was sixteen years of
age, and when he had reached that age the huntsmen once went hunting with
him. In the forest, the King's son was separated from the others, and
all at once he saw a great stag which he wanted to shoot, but could not
hit. At length he chased the stag so far that they were quite out of the
forest, and then suddenly a great tall man was standing there instead of
the stag, and said, "It is well that I have thee. I have already ruined
six pairs of glass skates with running after thee, and have not been
able to get thee." Then he took the King's son with him, and dragged him
through a great lake to a great palace, and then he had to sit down to
table with him and eat something. When they had eaten something together
the King said, "I have three daughters, thou must keep watch over the
eldest for one night, from nine in the evening till six in the morning,
and every time the clock strikes, I will come myself and call, and if thou
then givest me no answer, to-morrow morning thou shall be put to death,
but if thou always givest me an answer, thou shalt have her to wife."

When the young folks went to the bed-room there stood a stone image of St.
Christopher, and the King's daughter said to it, "My father will come
at nine o'clock, and every hour till it strikes three; when he calls,
give him an answer instead of the King's son." Then the stone image of
St. Christopher nodded its head quite quickly, and then more and more
slowly till at last it stood still. The next morning the King said to
him, "Thou hast done the business well, but I cannot give my daughter
away. Thou must now watch a night by my second daughter, and then I will
consider with myself, whether thou canst have my eldest daughter to wife,
but I shall come every hour myself, and when I call thee, answer me,
and if I call thee and thou dost not reply, thy blood shall flow." Then
they both went into the sleeping-room, and there stood a still larger
stone image of St. Christopher, and the King's daughter said to it,
"If my father calls, do you answer him." Then the great stone image of
St. Christopher again nodded its head quite quickly and then more and
more slowly, until at last it stood still again.  And the King's son lay
down on the threshold, put his hand under his head and slept. The next
morning the King said to him, "Thou hast done the business really well,
but I cannot give my daughter away; thou must now watch a night by the
youngest princess, and then I will consider with myself whether thou canst
have my second daughter to wife, but I shall come every hour myself, and
when I call thee answer me, and if I call thee and thou answerest not,
thy blood shall flow for me."

Then they once more went to the sleeping-room together, and there was
a much greater and much taller image of St. Christopher than the two
first had been. The King's daughter said to it, "When my father calls, do
thou answer." Then the great tall stone image of St. Christopher nodded
quite half an hour with its head, until at length the head stood still
again. And the King's son laid himself down on the threshold of the door
and slept. The next morning the King said, "Thou hast indeed watched well,
but I cannot give thee my daughter now; I have a great forest, if thou
cuttest it down for me between six o'clock this morning and six at night,
I will think about it." Then he gave him a glass axe, a glass wedge,
and a glass mallet. When he got into the wood, he began at once to cut,
but the axe broke in two, then he took the wedge, and struck it once
with the mallet, and it became as short and as small as sand. Then he was
much troubled and believed he would have to die, and sat down and wept.

Now when it was noon the King said, "One of you girls must take him
something to eat." "No," said the two eldest, "We will not take it to
him; the one by whom he last watched, can take him something." Then the
youngest was forced to go and take him something to eat. When she got
into the forest, she asked him how he was getting on? "Oh," said he,
"I am getting on very badly." Then she said he was to come and just eat
a little. "Nay," said he, "I cannot do that, I shall still have to die,
so I will eat no more." Then she spoke so kindly to him and begged him
just to try, that he came and ate something. When he had eaten something
she said, "I will comb thy hair a while, and then thou wilt feel happier."

So she combed his hair, and he became weary and fell asleep, and then
she took her handkerchief and made a knot in it, and struck it three
times on the earth, and said, "Earth-workers, come forth." In a moment,
numbers of little earth-men came forth, and asked what the King's daughter
commanded? Then said she, "In three hours' time the great forest must
be cut down, and the whole of the wood laid in heaps." So the little
earth-men went about and got together the whole of their kindred to
help them with the work. They began at once, and when the three hours
were over, all was done, and they came back to the King's daughter
and told her so. Then she took her white handkerchief again and said,
"Earth-workers, go home." On this they all disappeared. When the King's
son awoke, he was delighted, and she said, "Come home when it has struck
six o'clock." He did as she told him, and then the King asked, "Hast thou
made away with the forest?" "Yes," said the King's son. When they were
sitting at table, the King said, "I cannot yet give thee my daughter to
wife, thou must still do something more for her sake." So he asked what
it was to be, then? "I have a great fish-pond," said the King. "Thou must
go to it to-morrow morning and clear it of all mud until it is as bright
as a mirror, and fill it with every kind of fish."  The next morning
the King gave him a glass shovel and said, "The fish-pond must be done
by six o'clock." So he went away, and when he came to the fish-pond he
stuck his shovel in the mud and it broke in two, then he stuck his hoe
in the mud, and broke it also. Then he was much troubled. At noon the
youngest daughter brought him something to eat, and asked him how he
was getting on?  So the King's son said everything was going very ill
with him, and he would certainly have to lose his head. "My tools have
broken to pieces again." "Oh," said she, "thou must just come and eat
something, and then thou wilt be in another frame of mind." "No," said he,
"I cannot eat, I am far too unhappy for that!" Then she gave him many
good words until at last he came and ate something. Then she combed his
hair again, and he fell asleep, so once more she took her handkerchief,
tied a knot in it, and struck the ground thrice with the knot, and said,
"Earth-workers, come forth." In a moment a great many little earth-men
came and asked what she desired, and she told them that in three hours'
time, they must have the fish-pond entirely cleaned out, and it must be so
clear that people could see themselves reflected in it, and every kind of
fish must be in it. The little earth-men went away and summoned all their
kindred to help them, and in two hours it was done. Then they returned to
her and said, "We have done as thou hast commanded." The King's daughter
took the handkerchief and once more struck thrice on the ground with it,
and said, "Earth-workers, go home again." Then they all went away.

When the King's son awoke the fish-pond was done. Then the King's daughter
went away also, and told him that when it was six he was to come to
the house.  When he arrived at the house the King asked, "Hast thou got
the fish-pond done?" "Yes," said the King's son. That was very good.

When they were again sitting at table the King said, "Thou hast certainly
done the fish-pond, but I cannot give thee my daughter yet; thou must
just do one thing more." "What is that, then?" asked the King's son. The
King said he had a great mountain on which there was nothing but briars
which must all be cut down, and at the top of it the youth must build up a
great castle, which must be as strong as could be conceived, and all the
furniture and fittings belonging to a castle must be inside it. And when
he arose next morning the King gave him a glass axe and a glass gimlet
with him, and he was to have all done by six o'clock. As he was cutting
down the first briar with the axe, it broke off short, and so small
that the pieces flew all round about, and he could not use the gimlet
either. Then he was quite miserable, and waited for his dearest to see
if she would not come and help him in his need. When it was mid-day she
came and brought him something to eat. He went to meet her and told her
all, and ate something, and let her comb his hair and fell asleep. Then
she once more took the knot and struck the earth with it, and said,
"Earth-workers, come forth!" Then came once again numbers of earth-men,
and asked what her desire was. Then said she, "In the space of three hours
they must cut down the whole of the briars, and a castle must be built on
the top of the mountain that must be as strong as any one could conceive,
and all the furniture that pertains to a castle must be inside it." They
went away, and summoned their kindred to help them and when the time was
come, all was ready. Then they came to the King's daughter and told her
so, and the King's daughter took her handkerchief and struck thrice on
the earth with it, and said, "Earth-workers, go home," on which they all
disappeared. When therefore the King's son awoke and saw everything done,
he was as happy as a bird in air.

When it had struck six, they went home together. Then said the King,
"Is the castle ready?" "Yes," said the King's son. When they sat down to
table, the King said, "I cannot give away my youngest daughter until the
two eldest are married."  Then the King's son and the King's daughter were
quite troubled, and the King's son had no idea what to do. But he went by
night to the King's daughter and ran away with her. When they had got a
little distance away, the King's daughter peeped round and saw her father
behind her. "Oh," said she, "what are we to do? My father is behind us,
and will take us back with him. I will at once change thee into a briar,
and myself into a rose, and I will shelter myself in the midst of the
bush." When the father reached the place, there stood a briar with one
rose on it, then he was about to gather the rose, when the thorn came
and pricked his finger so that he was forced to go home again. His wife
asked why he had not brought their daughter back with him? So he said he
had nearly got up to her, but that all at once he had lost sight of her,
and a briar with one rose was growing on the spot.

Then said the Queen, "If thou hadst but gathered the rose, the briar
would have been forced to come too." So he went back again to fetch
the rose, but in the meantime the two were already far over the plain,
and the King ran after them.  Then the daughter once more looked round
and saw her father coming, and said, "Oh, what shall we do now? I will
instantly change thee into a church and myself into a priest, and I will
stand up in the pulpit, and preach." When the King got to the place,
there stood a church, and in the pulpit was a priest preaching. So he
listened to the sermon, and then went home again.

Then the Queen asked why he had not brought their daughter with him,
and he said, "Nay, I ran a long time after her, and just as I thought I
should soon overtake her, a church was standing there and a priest was
in the pulpit preaching." "Thou shouldst just have brought the priest,"
said his wife, "and then the church would soon have come. It is no use to
send thee, I must go there myself." When she had walked for some time,
and could see the two in the distance, the King's daughter peeped round
and saw her mother coming, and said, "Now we are undone, for my mother
is coming herself: I will immediately change thee into a fish-pond and
myself into a fish.

When the mother came to the place, there was a large fish-pond, and in
the midst of it a fish was leaping about and peeping out of the water,
and it was quite merry. She wanted to catch the fish, but she could
not. Then she was very angry, and drank up the whole pond in order to
catch the fish, but it made her so ill that she was forced to vomit,
and vomited the whole pond out again. Then she cried, "I see very well
that nothing can be done now," and said that now they might come back
to her. Then the King's daughter went back again, and the Queen gave
her daughter three walnuts, and said, "With these thou canst help
thyself when thou art in thy greatest need." So the young folks went
once more away together. And when they had walked quite ten miles, they
arrived at the castle from whence the King's son came, and close by it
was a village. When they reached it, the King's son said, "Stay here,
my dearest, I will just go to the castle, and then will I come with a
carriage and with attendants to fetch thee."

When he got to the castle they all rejoiced greatly at having the
King's son back again, and he told them he had a bride who was now in
the village, and they must go with the carriage to fetch her. Then they
harnessed the horses at once, and many attendants seated themselves
outside the carriage. When the King's son was about to get in, his
mother gave him a kiss, and he forgot everything which had happened,
and also what he was about to do. On this his mother ordered the horses
to be taken out of the carriage again, and everyone went back into the
house. But the maiden sat in the village and watched and watched, and
thought he would come and fetch her, but no one came. Then the King's
daughter took service in the mill which belonged to the castle, and was
obliged to sit by the pond every afternoon and clean the tubs.

And the Queen came one day on foot from the castle, and went walking
by the pond, and saw the well-grown maiden sitting there, and said,
"What a fine strong girl that is! She pleases me well!" Then she and
all with her looked at the maid, but no one knew her. So a long time
passed by during which the maiden served the miller honorably and
faithfully. In the meantime, the Queen had sought a wife for her son,
who came from quite a distant part of the world. When the bride came,
they were at once to be married. And many people hurried together, all
of whom wanted to see everything. Then the girl said to the miller that
he might be so good as to give her leave to go also. So the miller said,
"Yes, do go there."  When she was about to go, she opened one of the
three walnuts, and a beautiful dress lay inside it. She put it on, and
went into the church and stood by the altar.  Suddenly came the bride and
bridegroom, and seated themselves before the altar, and when the priest
was just going to bless them, the bride peeped half round and saw the
maiden standing there. Then she stood up again, and said she would not be
given away until she also had as beautiful a dress as that lady there.
So they went back to the house again, and sent to ask the lady if she
would sell that dress. No, she would not sell it, but the bride might
perhaps earn it. Then the bride asked her how she was to do this? Then
the maiden said if she might sleep one night outside the King's son's
door, the bride might have what she wanted.  So the bride said, "Yes,
she was willing to do that." But the servants were ordered to give the
King's son a sleeping-drink, and then the maiden laid herself down on the
threshold and lamented all night long. She had had the forest cut down
for him, she had had the fish-pond cleaned out for him, she had had the
castle built for him, she had changed him into a briar, and then into a
church, and at last into a fish-pond, and yet he had forgotten her so
quickly. The King's son did not hear one word of it, but the servants
had been awakened, and had listened to it, and had not known what it
could mean. The next morning when they were all up, the bride put on the
dress, and went away to the church with the bridegroom. In the meantime
the maiden opened the second walnut, and a still more beautiful dress
was inside it. She put it on, and went and stood by the altar in the
church, and everything happened as it had happened the time before.
And the maiden again lay all night on the threshold which led to the
chamber of the King's son, and the servant was once more to give him a
sleeping-drink. The servant, however, went to him and gave him something
to keep him awake, and then the King's son went to bed, and the miller's
maiden bemoaned herself as before on the threshold of the door, and told
of all that she had done. All this the King's son heard, and was sore
troubled, and what was past came back to him.  Then he wanted to go to
her, but his mother had locked the door. The next morning, however, he
went at once to his beloved, and told her everything which had happened
to him, and prayed her not to be angry with him for having forgotten
her. Then the King's daughter opened the third walnut, and within it
was a still more magnificent dress, which she put on, and went with her
bridegroom to church, and numbers of children came who gave them flowers,
and offered them gay ribbons to bind about their feet, and they were
blessed by the priest, and had a merry wedding. But the false mother
and the bride had to depart. And the mouth of the person who last told
all this is still warm.



114 The Cunning Little Tailor

There was once on a time a princess who was extremely proud. If a wooer
came she gave him some riddle to guess, and if he could not find it
out, he was sent contemptuously away. She let it be made known also
that whosoever solved her riddle should marry her, let him be who he
might. At length, therefore, three tailors fell in with each other,
the two eldest of whom thought they had done so many dexterous bits of
work successfully that they could not fail to succeed in this also; the
third was a little useless land-louper, who did not even know his trade,
but thought he must have some luck in this venture, for where else was
it to come from? Then the two others said to him, "Just stay at home;
thou canst not do much with thy little bit of understanding." The little
tailor, however, did not let himself be discouraged, and said he had set
his head to work about this for once, and he would manage well enough,
and he went forth as if the whole world were his.

They all three announced themselves to the princess, and said she was to
propound her riddle to them, and that the right persons were now come, who
had understandings so fine that they could be threaded in a needle. Then
said the princess, "I have two kinds of hair on my head, of what color
is it?" "If that be all," said the first, "it must be black and white,
like the cloth which is called pepper and salt." The princess said,
"Wrongly guessed; let the second answer."  Then said the second, "If
it be not black and white, then it is brown and red, like my father's
company coat." "Wrongly guessed," said the princess, "let the third
give the answer, for I see very well he knows it for certain." Then
the little tailor stepped boldly forth and said, "The princess has a
silver and a golden hair on her head, and those are the two different
colors." When the princess heard that, she turned pale and nearly fell
down with terror, for the little tailor had guessed her riddle, and she
had firmly believed that no man on earth could discover it. When her
courage returned she said, "Thou hast not won me yet by that; there is
still something else that thou must do. Below, in the stable is a bear
with which thou shalt pass the night, and when I get up in the morning
if thou art still alive, thou shalt marry me." She expected, however,
she should thus get rid of the tailor, for the bear had never yet left
any one alive who had fallen into his clutches. The little tailor did
not let himself be frightened away, but was quite delighted, and said,
"Boldly ventured is half won."

When therefore the evening came, our little tailor was taken down to
the bear.  The bear was about to set at the little fellow at once, and
give him a hearty welcome with his paws: "Softly, softly," said the little
tailor, "I will soon make thee quiet." Then quite composedly, and as if
he had not an anxiety in the world, he took some nuts out of his pocket,
cracked them, and ate the kernels. When the bear saw that, he was seized
with a desire to have some nuts too. The tailor felt in his pockets, and
reached him a handful; they were, however, not nuts, but pebbles. The bear
put them in his mouth, but could get nothing out of them, let him bite as
he would. "Eh!" thought he, "what a stupid blockhead I am! I cannot even
crack a nut!" and then he said to the tailor, "Here, crack me the nuts."
"There, see what a stupid fellow thou art!" said the little tailor,
"to have such a great mouth, and not be able to crack a small nut!" Then
he took the pebble and nimbly put a nut in his mouth in the place of it,
and crack, it was in two! "I must try the thing again," said the bear;
"when I watch you, I then think I ought to be able to do it too." So the
tailor once more gave him a pebble, and the bear tried and tried to bite
into it with all the strength of his body. But no one will imagine that
he accomplished it. When that was over, the tailor took out a violin from
beneath his coat, and played a piece of it to himself. When the bear heard
the music, he could not help beginning to dance, and when he had danced a
while, the thing pleased him so well that he said to the little tailor,
"Hark you, is the fiddle heavy?" "Light enough for a child. Look, with
the left hand I lay my fingers on it, and with the right I stroke it with
the bow, and then it goes merrily, hop sa sa vivallalera!" "So," said the
bear; "fiddling is a thing I should like to understand too, that I might
dance whenever I had a fancy. What dost thou think of that?  Wilt thou
give me lessons?" "With all my heart," said the tailor, "if thou hast a
talent for it. But just let me see thy claws, they are terribly long,
I must cut thy nails a little." Then a vise was brought, and the bear
put his claws in it, and the little tailor screwed it tight, and said,
"Now wait until I come with the scissors," and he let the bear growl as he
liked, and lay down in the corner on a bundle of straw, and fell asleep.

When the princess heard the bear growling so fiercely during the night,
she believed nothing else but that he was growling for joy, and had
made an end of the tailor. In the morning she arose careless and happy,
but when she peeped into the stable, the tailor stood gaily before her,
and was as healthy as a fish in water. Now she could not say another word
against the wedding because she had given a promise before every one,
and the King ordered a carriage to be brought in which she was to drive
to church with the tailor, and there she was to be married. When they
had got into the carriage, the two other tailors, who had false hearts
and envied him his good fortune, went into the stable and unscrewed the
bear again. The bear in great fury ran after the carriage. The princess
heard him snorting and growling; she was terrified, and she cried,
"Ah, the bear is behind us and wants to get thee!" The tailor was quick
and stood on his head, stuck his legs out of the window, and cried,
"Dost thou see the vise? If thou dost not be off thou shalt be put into
it again." When the bear saw that, he turned round and ran away. The
tailor drove quietly to church, and the princess was married to him at
once, and he lived with her as happy as a woodlark.  Whosoever does not
believe this, must pay a thaler.



115 The Bright Sun Brings It to Light

A tailor's apprentice was travelling about the world in search of work,
and at one time he could find none, and his poverty was so great that
he had not a farthing to live on. Presently he met a Jew on the road,
and as he thought he would have a great deal of money about him, the
tailor thrust God out of his heart, fell on the Jew, and said, "Give
me thy money, or I will strike thee dead." Then said the Jew, "Grant
me my life, I have no money but eight farthings." But the tailor said,
"Money thou hast; and it shall be produced," and used violence and beat
him until he was near death. And when the Jew was dying, the last words
he said were, "The bright sun will bring it to light," and thereupon he
died. The tailor's apprentice felt in his pockets and sought for money,
but he found nothing but eight farthings, as the Jew had said. Then he
took him up and carried him behind a clump of trees, and went onwards
to seek work. After he had traveled about a long while, he got work in a
town with a master who had a pretty daughter, with whom he fell in love,
and he married her, and lived in good and happy wedlock.

After a long time when he and his wife had two children, the wife's father
and mother died, and the young people kept house alone. One morning,
when the husband was sitting on the table before the window, his wife
brought him his coffee, and when he had poured it out into the saucer,
and was just going to drink, the sun shone on it and the reflection
gleamed hither and thither on the wall above, and made circles on
it. Then the tailor looked up and said, "Yes, it would like very much
to bring it to light, and cannot!" The woman said, "Oh, dear husband,
and what is that, then?" "What dost thou mean by that?" He answered,
"I must not tell thee." But she said, "If thou lovest me, thou must
tell me," and used her most affectionate words, and said that no one
should ever know it, and left him no rest. Then he told her how years
ago, when he was travelling about seeking work and quite worn out and
penniless, he had killed a Jew, and that in the last agonies of death,
the Jew had spoken the words, "The bright sun will bring it to light." And
now, the sun had just wanted to bring it to light, and had gleamed and
made circles on the wall, but had not been able to do it. After this,
he again charged her particularly never to tell this, or he would lose
his life, and she did promise. When however, he had sat down to work
again, she went to her great friend and confided the story to her,
but she was never to repeat it to any human being, but before two days
were over, the whole town knew it, and the tailor was brought to trial,
and condemned. And thus, after all, the bright sun did bring it to light.



116 The Blue Light

There was once on a time a soldier who for many years had served the
King faithfully, but when the war came to an end could serve no longer
because of the many wounds which he had received. The King said to him,
"Thou mayst return to thy home, I need thee no longer, and thou wilt
not receive any more money, for he only receives wages who renders
me service for them." Then the soldier did not know how to earn a
living, went away greatly troubled, and walked the whole day, until
in the evening he entered a forest. When darkness came on, he saw a
light, which he went up to, and came to a house wherein lived a witch.
"Do give me one night's lodging, and a little to eat and drink," said
he to her, "or I shall starve." "Oho!" she answered, "who gives anything
to a run-away soldier?  Yet will I be compassionate, and take you in, if
you will do what I wish." "What do you wish?" said the soldier. "That you
should dig all round my garden for me, tomorrow." The soldier consented,
and next day labored with all his strength, but could not finish it by the
evening. "I see well enough," said the witch, "that you can do no more
to-day, but I will keep you yet another night, in payment for which you
must to-morrow chop me a load of wood, and make it small." The soldier
spent the whole day in doing it, and in the evening the witch proposed
that he should stay one night more. "To-morrow, you shall only do me a
very trifling piece of work. Behind my house, there is an old dry well,
into which my light has fallen, it burns blue, and never goes out, and
you shall bring it up again for me." Next day the old woman took him
to the well, and let him down in a basket. He found the blue light, and
made her a signal to draw him up again. She did draw him up, but when he
came near the edge, she stretched down her hand and wanted to take the
blue light away from him. "No," said he, perceiving her evil intention,
"I will not give thee the light until I am standing with both feet upon
the ground." The witch fell into a passion, let him down again into the
well, and went away.

The poor soldier fell without injury on the moist ground, and the blue
light went on burning, but of what use was that to him? He saw very well
that he could not escape death. He sat for a while very sorrowfully,
then suddenly he felt in his pocket and found his tobacco pipe, which
was still half full. "This shall be my last pleasure," thought he,
pulled it out, lit it at the blue light and began to smoke.  When the
smoke had circled about the cavern, suddenly a little black dwarf stood
before him, and said, "Lord, what are thy commands?" "What commands
have I to give thee?" replied the soldier, quite astonished. "I must
do everything thou biddest me," said the little man. "Good," said the
soldier; "then in the first place help me out of this well." The little
man took him by the hand, and led him through an underground passage,
but he did not forget to take the blue light with him. On the way the
dwarf showed him the treasures which the witch had collected and hidden
there, and the soldier took as much gold as he could carry.  When he was
above, he said to the little man, "Now go and bind the old witch, and
carry her before the judge." In a short time she, with frightful cries,
came riding by, as swift as the wind on a wild tom-cat, nor was it long
after that before the little man re-appeared. "It is all done," said he,
"and the witch is already hanging on the gallows. What further commands
has my lord?" inquired the dwarf. "At this moment, none," answered the
soldier; "Thou canst return home, only be at hand immediately, if I
summon thee." "Nothing more is needed than that thou shouldst light thy
pipe at the blue light, and I will appear before thee at once." Thereupon
he vanished from his sight.

The soldier returned to the town from which he had come. He went to the
best inn, ordered himself handsome clothes, and then bade the landlord
furnish him a room as handsomely as possible. When it was ready and the
soldier had taken possession of it, he summoned the little black mannikin
and said, "I have served the King faithfully, but he has dismissed me,
and left me to hunger, and now I want to take my revenge." "What am I
to do?" asked the little man. "Late at night, when the King's daughter
is in bed, bring her here in her sleep, she shall do servant's work for
me." The mannikin said, "That is an easy thing for me to do, but a very
dangerous thing for you, for if it is discovered, you will fare ill." When
twelve o'clock had struck, the door sprang open, and the mannikin carried
in the princess. "Aha! art thou there?" cried the soldier, "get to thy
work at once! Fetch the broom and sweep the chamber." When she had done
this, he ordered her to come to his chair, and then he stretched out his
feet and said, "Pull off my boots for me," and then he threw them in her
face, and made her pick them up again, and clean and brighten them. She,
however, did everything he bade her, without opposition, silently and
with half-shut eyes. When the first cock crowed, the mannikin carried
her back to the royal palace, and laid her in her bed.

Next morning when the princess arose, she went to her father, and told
him that she had had a very strange dream. "I was carried through the
streets with the rapidity of lightning," said she, "and taken into a
soldier's room, and I had to wait upon him like a servant, sweep his room,
clean his boots, and do all kinds of menial work. It was only a dream,
and yet I am just as tired as if I really had done everything." "The
dream may have been true," said the King, "I will give thee a piece
of advice. Fill thy pocket full of peas, and make a small hole in it,
and then if thou art carried away again, they will fall out and leave a
track in the streets." But unseen by the King, the mannikin was standing
beside him when he said that, and heard all. At night when the sleeping
princess was again carried through the streets, some peas certainly did
fall out of her pocket, but they made no track, for the crafty mannikin
had just before scattered peas in every street there was. And again the
princess was compelled to do servant's work until cock-crow.

Next morning the King sent his people out to seek the track, but it was
all in vain, for in every street poor children were sitting, picking up
peas, and saying, "It must have rained peas, last night." "We must think
of something else," said the King; "keep thy shoes on when thou goest to
bed, and before thou comest back from the place where thou art taken,
hide one of them there, I will soon contrive to find it." The black
mannikin heard this plot, and at night when the soldier again ordered
him to bring the princess, revealed it to him, and told him that he knew
of no expedient to counteract this stratagem, and that if the shoe were
found in the soldier's house it would go badly with him. "Do what I bid
thee," replied the soldier, and again this third night the princess was
obliged to work like a servant, but before she went away, she hid her
shoe under the bed.

Next morning the King had the entire town searched for his daughter's
shoe. It was found at the soldier's, and the soldier himself, who at the
entreaty of the dwarf had gone outside the gate, was soon brought back,
and thrown into prison. In his flight he had forgotten the most valuable
things he had, the blue light and the gold, and had only one ducat in
his pocket. And now loaded with chains, he was standing at the window of
his dungeon, when he chanced to see one of his comrades passing by. The
soldier tapped at the pane of glass, and when this man came up, said to
him, "Be so kind as to fetch me the small bundle I have left lying in the
inn, and I will give you a ducat for doing it." His comrade ran thither
and brought him what he wanted. As soon as the soldier was alone again,
he lighted his pipe and summoned the black mannikin. "Have no fear,"
said the latter to his master. "Go wheresoever they take you, and let
them do what they will, only take the blue light with you." Next day
the soldier was tried, and though he had done nothing wicked, the judge
condemned him to death. When he was led forth to die, he begged a last
favor of the King. "What is it?" asked the King.  "That I may smoke one
more pipe on my way." "Thou mayst smoke three," answered the King, "but
do not imagine that I will spare thy life." Then the soldier pulled out
his pipe and lighted it at the blue light, and as soon as a few wreaths
of smoke had ascended, the mannikin was there with a small cudgel in
his hand, and said, "What does my lord command?" "Strike down to earth
that false judge there, and his constable, and spare not the King who
has treated me so ill." Then the mannikin fell on them like lightning,
darting this way and that way, and whosoever was so much as touched by
his cudgel fell to earth, and did not venture to stir again. The King
was terrified; he threw himself on the soldier's mercy, and merely to
be allowed to live at all, gave him his kingdom for his own, and the
princess to wife.



117 The Wilful Child

Once upon a time there was a child who was willful, and would not do
at her mother wished. For this reason God had no pleasure in her, and
let her become ill, and no doctor could do her any good, and in a short
time she lay on her death-bed. When she had been lowered into her grave,
and the earth was spread over her, all at once her arm came out again,
and stretched upwards, and when they had put it in and spread fresh
earth over it, it was all to no purpose, for the arm always came out
again. Then the mother herself was obliged to go to the grave, and
strike the arm with a rod, and when she had done that, it was drawn in,
and then at last the child had rest beneath the ground.



118 The Three Army-Surgeons

Three army-surgeons who thought they knew their art perfectly, were
travelling about the world, and they came to an inn where they wanted to
pass the night.  The host asked whence they came, and whither they were
going? "We are roaming about the world and practising our art." "Just
show me for once in a way what you can do," said the host. Then the
first said he would cut off his hand, and put it on again early next
morning; the second said he would tear out his heart, and replace
it next morning; the third said he would cut out his eyes and heal
them again next morning. "If you can do that," said the innkeeper,
"you have learnt everything." They, however, had a salve, with which
they rubbed themselves, which joined parts together, and they carried
the little bottle in which it was, constantly with them. Then they cut
the hand, heart and eyes from their bodies as they had said they would,
and laid them all together on a plate, and gave it to the innkeeper. The
innkeeper gave it to a servant who was to set it in the cupboard, and
take good care of it. The girl, however, had a lover in secret, who
was a soldier. When therefore the innkeeper, the three army-surgeons,
and everyone else in the house were asleep, the soldier came and wanted
something to eat. The girl opened the cupboard and brought him some food,
and in her love forgot to shut the cupboard-door again; She seated herself
at the table by her lover, and they chattered away together. While she sat
so contentedly there, thinking of no ill luck, the cat came creeping in,
found the cupboard open, took the hand and heart and eyes of the three
army-surgeons, and ran off with them.  When the soldier had done eating,
and the girl was taking away the things and going to shut the cupboard
she saw that the plate which the innkeeper had given her to take care of,
was empty. Then she said in a fright to her lover, "Ah, miserable girl,
what shall I do? The hand is gone, the heart and the eyes are gone too,
what will become of me in the morning?" "Be easy," said he, "I will help
thee out of thy trouble there is a thief hanging outside on the gallows,
I will cut off his hand. Which hand was it?" "The right one." Then the
girl gave him a sharp knife, and he went and cut the poor sinner's right
hand off, and brought it to her. After this he caught the cat and cut
its eyes out, and now nothing but the heart was wanting. "Have you not
been killing, and are not the dead pigs in the cellar?" said he. "Yes,"
said the girl. "That's well," said the soldier, and he went down and
fetched a pig's heart. The girl placed all together on the plate, and
put it in the cupboard, and when after this her lover took leave of her,
she went quietly to bed.

In the morning when the three army-surgeons got up, they told the girl
she was to bring them the plate on which the hand, heart, and eyes were
lying. Then she brought it out of the cupboard, and the first fixed the
thief's hand on and smeared it with his salve, and it grew to his arm
directly. The second took the cat's eyes and put them in his own head. The
third fixed the pig's heart firm in the place where his own had been,
and the innkeeper stood by, admired their skill, and said he had never yet
seen such a thing as that done, and would sing their praises and recommend
them to everyone. Then they paid their bill, and travelled farther.

As they were on their way, the one with the pig's heart did not stay with
them at all, but wherever there was a corner he ran to it, and rooted
about in it with his nose as pigs do. The others wanted to hold him back
by the tail of his coat, but that did no good; he tore himself loose,
and ran wherever the dirt was thickest.  The second also behaved very
strangely; he rubbed his eyes, and said to the others, "Comrades, what
is the matter? I don't see at all. Will one of you lead me, so that I
do not fall." Then with difficulty they travelled on till evening, when
they reached another inn. They went into the bar together, and there at
a table in the corner sat a rich man counting money. The one with the
thief's hand walked round about him, made a sudden movement twice with
his arm, and at last when the stranger turned away, he snatched at the
pile of money, and took a handful from it. One of them saw this, and said,
"Comrade, what art thou about? Thou must not steal shame on thee!" "Eh,"
said he, "but how can I stop myself? My hand twitches, and I am forced
to snatch things whether I will or not."

After this, they lay down to sleep, and while they were lying there it
was so dark that no one could see his own hand. All at once the one
with the cat's eyes awoke, aroused the others, and said. "Brothers,
just look up, do you see the white mice running about there?" The two
sat up, but could see nothing. Then said he, "Things are not right
with us, we have not got back again what is ours.  We must return to
the innkeeper, he has deceived us." They went back therefore, the next
morning, and told the host they had not got what was their own again;
that the first had a thief's hand, the second cat's eyes, and the third
a pig's heart. The innkeeper said that the girl must be to blame for
that, and was going to call her, but when she had seen the three coming,
she had run out by the backdoor, and not come back. Then the three said
he must give them a great deal of money, or they would set his house on
fire. He gave them what he had, and whatever he could get together, and
the three went away with it. It was enough for the rest of their lives,
but they would rather have had their own proper organs.



119 The Seven Swabians

Seven Swabians were once together. The first was Master Schulz; the
second, Jackli; the third, Marli; the fourth, Jergli; the fifth, Michal;
the sixth, Hans; the seventh, Veitli: all seven had made up their minds to
travel about the world to seek adventures, and perform great deeds. But
in order that they might go in security and with arms in their hands,
they thought it would be advisable that they should have one solitary,
but very strong, and very long spear made for them.  This spear all
seven of them took in their hands at once; in front walked the boldest
and bravest, and that was Master Schulz; all the others followed in
a row, and Veitli was the last. Then it came to pass one day in the
hay-making month (July), when they had walked a long distance, and
still had a long way to go before they reached the village where they
were to pass the night, that as they were in a meadow in the twilight
a great beetle or hornet flew by them from behind a bush, and hummed
in a menacing manner. Master Schulz was so terrified that he all but
dropped the spear, and a cold perspiration broke out over his whole
body. "Hark! hark!" cried he to his comrades, "Good heavens! I hear a
drum." Jackli, who was behind him holding the spear, and who perceived
some kind of a smell, said, "Something is most certainly going on, for
I taste powder and matches." At these words Master Schulz began to take
to flight, and in a trice jumped over a hedge, but as he just happened
to jump on to the teeth of a rake which had been left lying there after
the hay-making, the handle of it struck against his face and gave him
a tremendous blow. "Oh dear! Oh dear!" screamed Master Schulz. "Take me
prisoner; I surrender! I surrender!" The other six all leapt over, one on
the top of the other, crying, "If you surrender, I surrender too!  If you
surrender, I surrender too!" At length, as no enemy was there to bind and
take them away, they saw that they had been mistaken, and in order that
the story might not be known, and they be treated as fools and ridiculed,
they all swore to each other to hold their peace about it until one of
them accidentally spoke of it. Then they journeyed onwards. The second
danger which they survived cannot be compared with the first. Some days
afterwards, their path led them through a fallow-field where a hare was
sitting sleeping in the sun. Her ears were standing straight up, and her
great glassy eyes were wide open. All of them were alarmed at the sight
of the horrible wild beast, and they consulted together as to what it
would be the least dangerous to do. For if they were to run away, they
knew that the monster would pursue and swallow them whole. So they said,
"We must go through a great and dangerous struggle. Boldly ventured,
is half won," and all seven grasped the spear, Master Schulz in front,
and Veitli behind.  Master Schulz was always trying to keep the spear
back, but Veitli had become quite brave while behind, and wanted to dash
forward and cried,


 "Strike home, in every Swabian's name,
 Or else I wish ye may be lame."

But Hans knew how to meet this, and said,


 "Thunder and lightning, it's fine to prate,
 But for dragon-hunting thou'rt aye too late."

Michal cried,


 "Nothing is wanting, not even a hair,
 Be sure the Devil himself is there."

Then it was Jergli's turn to speak,


 "If it be not, it's at least his mother,
 Or else it's the Devil's own step-brother."

And now Marli had a bright thought, and said to Veitli,


 "Advance, Veitli, advance, advance,
 And I behind will hold the lance."

Veitli, however, did not attend to that, and Jackli said,


 "Tis Schulz's place the first to be,
 No one deserves that honor but he."

Then Master Schulz plucked up his courage, and said, gravely,


 "Then let us boldly advance to the fight,
 And thus we shall show our valour and might."

Hereupon they all together set on the dragon. Master Schulz crossed
himself and prayed for God's assistance, but as all this was of no
avail, and he was getting nearer and nearer to the enemy, he screamed
"Oho! oho! ho! ho! ho!" in the greatest anguish. This awakened the hare,
which in great alarm darted swiftly away. When Master Schulz saw her
thus flying from the field of battle, he cried in his joy.


 "Quick, Veitli, quick, look there, look there,
 The monster's nothing but a hare!"

But the Swabian allies went in search of further adventures, and came
to the Moselle, a mossy, quiet, deep river, over which there are few
bridges, and which in many places people have to cross in boats. As the
seven Swabians did not know this, they called to a man who was working
on the opposite side of the river, to know how people contrived to get
across. The distance and their way of speaking made the man unable to
understand what they wanted, and he said "What? what?" in the way people
speak in the neighborhood of Treves. Master Schulz thought he was saying,
"Wade, wade through the water," and as he was the first, began to set
out and went into the moselle. It was not long before he sank in the mud
and the deep waves which drove against him, but his hat was blown on the
opposite shore by the wind, and a frog sat down beside it, and croaked
"Wat, wat, wat." The other six on the opposite side heard that, and said,
"Oho, comrades, Master Schulz is calling us; if he can wade across, why
cannot we?" So they all jumped into the water together in a great hurry,
and were drowned, and thus one frog took the lives of all six of them,
and not one of the Swabian allies ever reached home again.



120 The Three Apprentices

There were once three apprentices, who had agreed to keep always together
while travelling, and always to work in the same town. At one time,
however, their masters had no more work to give them, so that at last
they were in rags, and had nothing to live on. Then one of them said,
"What shall we do? We cannot stay here any longer, we will travel once
more, and if we do not find any work in the town we go to, we will
arrange with the innkeeper there, that we are to write and tell him
where we are staying, so that we can always have news of each other,
and then we will separate." And that seemed best to the others also.
They went forth, and met on the way a richly-dressed man who asked
who they were. "We are apprentices looking for work; Up to this time
we have kept together, but if we cannot find anything to do we are
going to separate." "There is no need for that," said the man, "if you
will do what I tell you, you shall not want for gold or for work; nay,
you shall become great lords, and drive in your carriages!" One of them
said, "If our souls and salvation be not endangered, we will certainly
do it." "They will not," replied the man, "I have no claim on you."
One of the others had, however, looked at his feet, and when he saw a
horse's foot and a man's foot, he did not want to have anything to do
with him. The Devil, however, said, "Be easy, I have no designs on you,
but on another soul, which is half my own already, and whose measure shall
but run full." As they were now secure, they consented, and the Devil
told them what he wanted. The first was to answer, "All three of us,"
to every question; the second was to say, "For money," and the third,
"And quite right too!" They were always to say this, one after the other,
but they were not to say one word more, and if they disobeyed this order,
all their money would disappear at once, but so long as they observed it,
their pockets would always be full. As a beginning, he at once gave them
as much as they could carry, and told them to go to such and such an inn
when they got to the town. They went to it, and the innkeeper came to meet
them, and asked if they wished for anything to eat? The first replied,
"All three of us." "Yes," said the host, "that is what I mean." The
second said, "For money."  "Of course," said the host. The third said,
"And quite right too!" "Certainly it is right," said the host.

Good meat and drink were now brought to them, and they were well waited
on.  After the dinner came the payment, and the innkeeper gave the bill
to the one who said, "All three of us," the second said, "For money," and
the third, "and quite right too!" "Indeed it is right," said the host,
"all three pay, and without money I can give nothing." They, however,
paid still more than he had asked.  The lodgers, who were looking on,
said, "These people must be mad." "Yes, indeed they are," said the host,
"they are not very wise." So they stayed some time in the inn, and said
nothing else but, "All three of us," "For money," and "And quite right
too!" But they saw and knew all that was going on. It so happened that a
great merchant came with a large sum of money, and said, "Sir host, take
care of my money for me, here are three crazy apprentices who might steal
it from me." The host did as he was asked. As he was carrying the trunk
into his room, he felt that it was heavy with gold. Thereupon he gave the
three apprentices a lodging below, but the merchant came up-stairs into
a separate apartment. When it was midnight, and the host thought that
all were asleep, he came with his wife, and they had an axe and struck
the rich merchant dead; and after they had murdered him they went to bed
again. When it was day there was a great outcry; the merchant lay dead
in bed bathed in blood. All the guests ran at once but the host said,
"The three crazy apprentices have done this;" the lodgers confirmed
it, and said, "It can have been no one else." The innkeeper, however,
had them called, and said to them, "Have you killed the merchant?"
"All three of us," said the first, "For money," said the second; and the
third added, "And quite right too!" "There now, you hear," said the host,
"they confess it themselves." They were taken to prison, therefore, and
were to be tried. When they saw that things were going so seriously,
they were after all afraid, but at night the Devil came and said,
"Bear it just one day longer, and do not play away your luck, not one
hair of your head shall be hurt."

The next morning they were led to the bar, and the judge said, "Are you
the murderers?" "All three of us." "Why did you kill the merchant?" "For
money."  "You wicked wretches, you have no horror of your sins?" "And
quite right too!"  "They have confessed, and are still stubborn," said
the judge, "lead them to death instantly." So they were taken out, and the
host had to go with them into the circle. When they were taken hold of by
the executioner's men, and were just going to be led up to the scaffold
where the headsman was standing with naked sword, a coach drawn by four
blood-red chestnut horses came up suddenly, driving so fast that fire
flashed from the stones, and someone made signs from the window with
a white handkerchief. Then said the headsman, "It is a pardon coming,"
and "Pardon! pardon!" was called from the carriage also. Then the Devil
stepped out as a very noble gentleman, beautifully dressed, and said,
"You three are innocent; you may now speak, make known what you have
seen and heard." Then said the eldest, "We did not kill the merchant,
the murderer is standing there in the circle," and he pointed to the
innkeeper. "In proof of this, go into his cellar, where many others whom
he has killed are still hanging." Then the judge sent the executioner's
men thither, and they found it was as the apprentices said, and when
they had informed the judge of this, he caused the innkeeper to be
led up, and his head was cut off. Then said the Devil to the three,
"Now I have got the soul which I wanted to have, and you are free,
and have money for the rest of your lives."



121 The King's Son Who Feared Nothing

There was once a King's son, who was no longer content to stay at home
in his father's house, and as he had no fear of anything, he thought,
"I will go forth into the wide world, there the time will not seem long
to me, and I shall see wonders enough." So he took leave of his parents,
and went forth, and on and on from morning till night, and whichever
way his path led it was the same to him.  It came to pass that he got to
the house of a giant, and as he was so tired he sat down by the door and
rested. And as he let his eyes roam here and there, he saw the giant's
playthings lying in the yard. These were a couple of enormous balls,
and nine-pins as tall as a man. After a while he had a fancy to set the
nine-pins up and then rolled the balls at them, and screamed and cried
out when the nine-pins fell, and had a merry time of it. The giant heard
the noise, stretched his head out of the window, and saw a man who was
not taller than other men, and yet played with his nine-pins. "Little
worm," cried he, "why art thou playing with my balls? Who gave thee
strength to do it?" The King's son looked up, saw the giant, and said,
"Oh, thou blockhead, thou thinkest indeed that thou only hast strong arms,
I can do everything I want to do." The giant came down and watched the
bowling with great admiration, and said, "Child of man, if thou art one of
that kind, go and bring me an apple of the tree of life." "What dost thou
want with it?" said the King's son. "I do not want the apple for myself,"
answered the giant, "but I have a betrothed bride who wishes for it. I
have travelled far about the world and cannot find the tree." "I will
soon find it," said the King's son, "and I do not know what is to prevent
me from getting the apple down."  The giant said, "Thou really believest
it to be so easy! The garden in which the tree stands is surrounded by
an iron railing, and in front of the railing lie wild beasts, each close
to the other, and they keep watch and let no man go in."  "They will be
sure to let me in," said the King's son. "Yes, but even if thou dost get
into the garden, and seest the apple hanging to the tree, it is still
not thine; a ring hangs in front of it, through which any one who wants
to reach the apple and break it off, must put his hand, and no one has
yet had the luck to do it." "That luck will be mine," said the King's son.

Then he took leave of the giant, and went forth over mountain and valley,
and through plains and forests, until at length he came to the wondrous
garden.

The beasts lay round about it, but they had put their heads down and
were asleep. Moreover, they did not awake when he went up to them,
so he stepped over them, climbed the fence, and got safely into the
garden. There, in the very middle of it, stood the tree of life, and the
red apples were shining upon the branches. He climbed up the trunk to the
top, and as he was about to reach out for an apple, he saw a ring hanging
before it; but he thrust his hand through that without any difficulty,
and gathered the apple. The ring closed tightly on his arm, and all at
once he felt a prodigious strength flowing through his veins. When he had
come down again from the tree with the apple, he would not climb over the
fence, but grasped the great gate, and had no need to shake it more than
once before it sprang open with a loud crash. Then he went out, and the
lion which had been lying down before, was awake and sprang after him,
not in rage and fierceness, but following him humbly as its master.

The King's son took the giant the apple he had promised him, and said,
"Seest thou, I have brought it without difficulty." The giant was glad
that his desire had been so soon satisfied, hastened to his bride,
and gave her the apple for which she had wished. She was a beautiful
and wise maiden, and as she did not see the ring on his arm, she said,
"I shall never believe that thou hast brought the apple, until I see the
ring on thine arm." The giant said, "I have nothing to do but go home
and fetch it," and thought it would be easy to take away by force from
the weak man, what he would not give of his own free will. He therefore
demanded the ring from him, but the King's son refused it. "Where the
apple is, the ring must be also," said the giant; "if thou wilt not give
it of thine own accord, thou must fight with me for it."

They wrestled with each other for a long time, but the giant could not
get the better of the King's son, who was strengthened by the magical
power of the ring.  Then the giant thought of a stratagem, and said,
"I have got warm with fighting, and so hast thou. We will bathe in
the river, and cool ourselves before we begin again." The King's son,
who knew nothing of falsehood, went with him to the water, and pulled
off with his clothes the ring also from his arm, and sprang into the
river. The giant instantly snatched the ring, and ran away with it,
but the lion, which had observed the theft, pursued the giant, tore the
ring out of his hand, and brought it back to its master. Then the giant
placed himself behind an oak-tree, and while the King's son was busy
putting on his clothes again, surprised him, and put both his eyes out.

And now the unhappy King's son stood there, and was blind and knew not
how to help himself. Then the giant came back to him, took him by the
hand as if he were someone who wanted to guide him, and led him to the
top of a high rock.  There he left him standing, and thought, "Just two
steps more, and he will fall down and kill himself, and I can take the
ring from him." But the faithful lion had not deserted its master; it
held him fast by the clothes, and drew him gradually back again. When
the giant came and wanted to rob the dead man, he saw that his cunning
had been in vain. "Is there no way, then, of destroying a weak child of
man like that?" said he angrily to himself, and seized the King's son and
led him back again to the precipice by another way, but the lion which
saw his evil design, helped its master out of danger here also. When
they had got close to the edge, the giant let the blind man's hand drop,
and was going to leave him behind alone, but the lion pushed the giant
so that he was thrown down and fell, dashed to pieces, on the ground.

The faithful animal again drew its master back from the precipice,
and guided him to a tree by which flowed a clear brook. The King's son
sat down there, but the lion lay down, and sprinkled the water in his
face with its paws. Scarcely had a couple of drops wetted the sockets
of his eyes, than he was once more able to see something, and remarked
a little bird flying quite close by, which wounded itself against the
trunk of a tree. On this it went down to the water and bathed itself
therein, and then it soared upwards and swept between the trees without
touching them, as if it had recovered its sight again. Then the King's
son recognized a sign from God and stooped down to the water, and washed
and bathed his face in it. And when he arose he had his eyes once more,
brighter and clearer than they had ever been.

The King's son thanked God for his great mercy, and travelled with his
lion onwards through the world. And it came to pass that he arrived before
a castle which was enchanted. In the gateway stood a maiden of beautiful
form and fine face, but she was quite black. She spoke to him and said,
"Ah, if thou couldst but deliver me from the evil spell which is thrown
over me." "What shall I do?"  said the King's son. The maiden answered,
"Thou must pass three nights in the great hall of this enchanted castle,
but thou must let no fear enter thy heart. When they are doing their worst
to torment thee, if thou bearest it without letting a sound escape thee,
I shall be free. Thy life they dare not take." Then said the King's son,
"I have no fear; with God's help I will try it." So he went gaily into
the castle, and when it grew dark he seated himself in the large hall
and waited.  Everything was quiet, however, till midnight, when all at
once a great tumult began, and out of every hole and corner came little
devils. They behaved as if they did not see him, seated themselves
in the middle of the room, lighted a fire, and began to gamble. When
one of them lost, he said, "It is not right; some one is here who does
not belong to us; it is his fault that I am losing." "Wait, you fellow
behind the stove, I am coming," said another. The screaming became still
louder, so that no one could have heard it without terror. The King's son
stayed sitting quite quietly, and was not afraid; but at last the devils
jumped up from the ground, and fell on him, and there were so many of
them that he could not defend himself from them. They dragged him about
on the floor, pinched him, pricked him, beat him, and tormented him,
but no sound escaped from him.  Towards morning they disappeared,
and he was so exhausted that he could scarcely move his limbs, but
when day dawned the black maiden came to him.  She bore in her hand a
little bottle wherein was the water of life wherewith she washed him,
and he at once felt all pain depart and new strength flow through his
veins. She said, "Thou hast held out successfully for one night, but two
more lie before thee." Then she went away again, and as she was going,
he observed that her feet had become white. The next night the devils
came and began their gambols anew. They fell on the King's son, and beat
him much more severely than the night before, until his body was covered
with wounds. But as he bore all quietly, they were forced to leave him,
and when dawn appeared, the maiden came and healed him with the water
of life. And when she went away, he saw with joy that she had already
become white to the tips of her fingers. And now he had only one night
more to go through, but it was the worst. The hob-goblins came again:
"Art thou there still?" cried they, "thou shalt be tormented till thy
breath stops." They pricked him and beat him, and threw him here and
there, and pulled him by the arms and legs as if they wanted to tear him
to pieces, but he bore everything, and never uttered a cry. At last the
devils vanished, but he lay fainting there, and did not stir, nor could
he raise his eyes to look at the maiden who came in, and sprinkled and
bathed him with the water of life. But suddenly he was freed from all
pain, and felt fresh and healthy as if he had awakened from sleep, and
when he opened his eyes he saw the maiden standing by him, snow-white,
and fair as day. "Rise," said she, "and swing thy sword three times over
the stairs, and then all will be delivered." And when he had done that,
the whole castle was released from enchantment, and the maiden was a rich
King's daughter. The servants came and said that the table was already
set in the great hall, and dinner served up. Then they sat down and ate
and drank together, and in the evening the wedding was solemnized with
great rejoicings.



122 Donkey Cabbages

There was once a young huntsman who went into the forest to lie in
wait. He had a fresh and joyous heart, and as he was going thither,
whistling upon a leaf, an ugly old crone came up, who spoke to him and
said, "Good-day, dear huntsman, truly you are merry and contented, but I
am suffering from hunger and thirst, do give me an alms." The huntsman
had compassion on the poor old creature, felt in his pocket, and gave
her what he could afford. He was then about to go further, but the old
woman stopped him and said, "Listen, dear huntsman, to what I tell you;
I will make you a present in return for your kindness. Go on your way
now, but in a little while you will come to a tree, whereon nine birds
are sitting which have a cloak in their claws, and are plucking at it;
take your gun and shoot into the midst of them, they will let the cloak
fall down to you, but one of the birds will be hurt, and will drop down
dead. Carry away the cloak, it is a wishing-cloak; when you throw it
over your shoulders, you only have to wish to be in a certain place, and
you will be there in the twinkling of an eye. Take out the heart of the
dead bird and swallow it whole, and every morning early, when you get up,
you will find a gold piece under your pillow." The huntsman thanked the
wise woman, and thought to himself, "Those are fine things that she has
promised me, if all does but come true." And verily when he had walked
about a hundred paces, he heard in the branches above him such a screaming
and twittering that he looked up and saw there a crowd of birds who were
tearing a piece of cloth about with their beaks and claws, and tugging
and fighting as if each wanted to have it all to himself. "Well," said
the huntsman, "this is wonderful, it has really come to pass just as the
old wife foretold!" and he took the gun from his shoulder, aimed and fired
right into the midst of them, so that the feathers flew about. The birds
instantly took to flight with loud outcries, but one dropped down dead,
and the cloak fell at the same time. Then the huntsman did as the old
woman had directed him, cut open the bird, sought the heart, swallowed
it down, and took the cloak home with him.

Next morning, when he awoke, the promise occurred to him, and he wished
to see if it also had been fulfilled. When he lifted up the pillow,
the gold piece shone in his eyes, and next day he found another, and so
it went on, every time he got up. He gathered together a heap of gold,
but at last he thought, "Of what use is all my gold to me if I stay at
home? I will go forth and see the world."

He then took leave of his parents, buckled on his huntsman's pouch
and gun, and went out into the world. It came to pass, that one day he
travelled through a dense forest, and when he came to the end of it, in
the plain before him stood a fine castle. An old woman was standing with
a wonderfully beautiful maiden, looking out of one of the windows. The
old woman, however, was a witch and said to the maiden, "There comes
one out of the forest, who has a wonderful treasure in his body, we
must filch it from him, my dear daughter, it is more suitable for us
than for him. He has a bird's heart about him, by means of which a gold
piece lies every morning under his pillow." She told her what she was
to do to get it, and what part she had to play, and finally threatened
her, and said with angry eyes, "And if you do not attend to what I say,
it will be the worse for you."  Now when the huntsman came nearer he
descried the maiden, and said to himself, "I have travelled about for
such a long time, I will take a rest for once, and enter that beautiful
castle. I have certainly money enough." Nevertheless, the real reason
was that he had caught sight of the pretty girl.

He entered the house, and was well received and courteously entertained.
Before long he was so much in love with the young witch that he no
longer thought of anything else, and only saw things as she saw them,
and did what she desired. The old woman then said, "Now we must have
the bird's heart, he will never miss it." She prepared a drink, and
when it was ready, poured it into a cup and gave it to the maiden, who
was to present it to the huntsman. She did so, saying, "Now, my dearest,
drink to me." So he took the cup, and when he had swallowed the draught,
he brought up the heart of the bird. The girl had to take it away
secretly and swallow it herself, for the old woman would have it so.
Thenceforward he found no more gold under his pillow, but it lay instead
under that of the maiden, from whence the old woman fetched it away every
morning; but he was so much in love and so befooled, that he thought of
nothing else but of passing his time with the girl.

Then the old witch said, "We have the bird's heart, but we must also
take the wishing-cloak away from him." The girl answered, "We will leave
him that, he has lost his wealth." The old woman was angry and said,
"Such a mantle is a wonderful thing, and is seldom to be found in this
world. I must and will have it!"  She gave the girl several blows, and
said that if she did not obey, it should fare ill with her. So she did
the old woman's bidding, placed herself at the window and looked on the
distant country, as if she were very sorrowful. The huntsman asked, "Why
dost thou stand there so sorrowfully?" "Ah, my beloved," was her answer,
"over yonder lies the Garnet Mountain, where the precious stones grow.
I long for them so much that when I think of them, I feel quite sad,
but who can get them? Only the birds; they fly and can reach them,
but a man never." "Hast thou nothing else to complain of?" said the
huntsman. "I will soon remove that burden from thy heart." With that he
drew her under his mantle, wished himself on the Garnet Mountain, and
in the twinkling of an eye they were sitting on it together. Precious
stones were glistening on every side so that it was a joy to see them,
and together they gathered the finest and costliest of them. Now,
the old woman had, through her sorceries, contrived that the eyes of
the huntsman should become heavy. He said to the maiden, "We will sit
down and rest awhile, I am so tired that I can no longer stand on my
feet." Then they sat down, and he laid his head in her lap, and fell
asleep. When he was asleep, she unfastened the mantle from his shoulders,
and wrapped herself in it, picked up the garnets and stones, and wished
herself back at home with them.

But when the huntsman had had his sleep out and awoke, and perceived that
his sweetheart had betrayed him, and left him alone on the wild mountain,
he said, "Oh, what treachery there is in the world!" and sat down there
in care and sorrow, not knowing what to do. But the mountain belonged
to some wild and monstrous giants who dwelt thereon and lived their
lives there, and he had not sat long before he saw three of them coming
towards him, so he lay down as if he were sunk in a deep sleep. Then
the giants came up, and the first kicked him with his foot and said,
"What sort of an earth-worm is lying curled up here?" The second said,
"Step upon him and kill him." But the third said, "That would indeed be
worth your while; just let him live, he cannot remain here; and when he
climbs higher, toward the summit of of the mountain, the clouds will
lay hold of him and bear him away." So saying they passed by. But the
huntsman had paid heed to their words, and as soon as they were gone,
he rose and climbed up to the summit of the mountain, and when he had
sat there a while, a cloud floated towards him, caught him up, carried
him away, and travelled about for a long time in the heavens. Then it
sank lower, and let itself down on a great cabbage-garden, girt round
by walls, so that he came softly to the ground on cabbages and vegetables.

Then the huntsman looked about him and said, "If I had but something
to eat! I am so hungry, and my hunger will increase in course of time;
but I see here neither apples nor pears, nor any other sort of fruit,
everywhere nothing but cabbages," but at length he thought, "At a pinch
I can eat some of the leaves, they do not taste particularly good, but
they will refresh me." With that he picked himself out a fine head of
cabbage, and ate it, but scarcely had he swallowed a couple of mouthfuls
than he felt very strange and quite different.

Four legs grew on him, a large head and two thick ears, and he saw with
horror that he was changed into an ass. Still as his hunger increased
every minute, and as the juicy leaves were suitable to his present nature,
he went on eating with great zest. At last he arrived at a different kind
of cabbage, but as soon as he had swallowed it, he again felt a change,
and reassumed his former human shape.

Then the huntsman lay down and slept off his fatigue. When he awoke
next morning, he broke off one head of the bad cabbages and another of
the good ones, and thought to himself, "This shall help me to get my
own again and punish treachery." Then he took the cabbages with him,
climbed over the wall, and went forth to seek for the castle of his
sweetheart. After wandering about for a couple of days he was lucky enough
to find it again. He dyed his face brown, so that his own mother would
not have known him; and begged for shelter: "I am so tired," said he,
"that I can go no further." The witch asked, "Who are you, countryman,
and what is your business?" "I am a King's messenger, and was sent out
to seek the most delicious salad which grows beneath the sun. I have
even been so fortunate as to find it, and am carrying it about with me;
but the heat of the sun is so intense that the delicate cabbage threatens
to wither, and I do not know if I can carry it any further."

When the old woman heard of the exquisite salad, she was greedy, and
said, "Dear countryman, let me just taste this wonderful salad." "Why
not?" answered he, "I have brought two heads with me, and will give you
one of them," and he opened his pouch and handed her the bad cabbage. The
witch suspected nothing amiss, and her mouth watered so for this new
dish that she herself went into the kitchen and dressed it. When it
was prepared she could not wait until it was set on the table, but
took a couple of leaves at once, and put them in her mouth, but hardly
had she swallowed them than she was deprived of her human shape, and
she ran out into the courtyard in the form of an ass. Presently the
maid-servant entered the kitchen, saw the salad standing there ready
prepared, and was about to carry it up; but on the way, according to
habit, she was seized by the desire to taste, and she ate a couple of
leaves. Instantly the magic power showed itself, and she likewise became
an ass and ran out to the old woman, and the dish of salad fell to the
ground. Meantime the messenger sat beside the beautiful girl, and as
no one came with the salad and she also was longing for it, she said,
"I don't know what has become of the salad." The huntsman thought,
"The salad must have already taken effect," and said, "I will go to
the kitchen and inquire about it." As he went down he saw the two
asses running about in the courtyard; the salad, however, was lying on
the ground. "All right," said he, "the two have taken their portion,"
and he picked up the other leaves, laid them on the dish, and carried
them to the maiden. "I bring you the delicate food myself," said he,
"in order that you may not have to wait longer." Then she ate of it,
and was, like the others, immediately deprived of her human form, and
ran out into the courtyard in the shape of an ass.

After the huntsman had washed his face, so that the transformed ones
could recognize him, he went down into the courtyard, and said, "Now you
shall receive the wages of your treachery," and bound them together, all
three with one rope, and drove them along until he came to a mill. He
knocked at the window, the miller put out his head, and asked what he
wanted. "I have three unmanageable beasts," answered he, "which I don't
want to keep any longer.  Will you take them in, and give them food and
stable room, and manage them as I tell you, and then I will pay you what
you ask." The miller said, "Why not? But how am I to manage them?" The
huntsman then said that he was to give three beatings and one meal daily
to the old donkey, and that was the witch; one beating and three meals
to the younger one, which was the servant-girl; and to the youngest,
which was the maiden, no beatings and three meals, for he could not
bring himself to have the maiden beaten. After that he went back into
the castle, and found therein everything he needed.

After a couple of days, the miller came and said he must inform him that
the old ass which had received three beatings and only one meal daily
was dead; "the two others," he continued, "are certainly not dead,
and are fed three times daily, but they are so sad that they cannot
last much longer." The huntsman was moved to pity, put away his anger,
and told the miller to drive them back again to him.  And when they came,
he gave them some of the good salad, so that they became human again. The
beautiful girl fell on her knees before him, and said, "Ah, my beloved,
forgive me for the evil I have done you; my mother drove me to it;
it was done against my will, for I love you dearly. Your wishing-cloak
hangs in a cupboard, and as for the bird's-heart I will take a vomiting
potion." But he thought otherwise, and said, "Keep it; it is all the same,
for I will take thee for my true wife." So the wedding was celebrated,
and they lived happily together until their death.



123 The Old Woman in the Wood

A poor servant-girl was once travelling with the family with which she
was in service, through a great forest, and when they were in the midst
of it, robbers came out of the thicket, and murdered all they found. All
perished together except the girl, who had jumped out of the carriage
in a fright, and hidden herself behind a tree. When the robbers had gone
away with their booty, she came out and beheld the great disaster. Then
she began to weep bitterly, and said, "What can a poor girl like me do
now? I do not know how to get out of the forest, no human being lives in
it, so I must certainly starve." She walked about and looked for a road,
but could find none. When it was evening she seated herself under a tree,
gave herself into God's keeping, and resolved to sit waiting there and
not go away, let what might happen. When, however, she had sat there
for a while, a white dove came flying to her with a little golden key in
its mouth. It put the little key in her hand, and said, "Dost thou see
that great tree, therein is a little lock, it opens with the tiny key,
and there thou wilt find food enough, and suffer no more hunger." Then
she went to the tree and opened it, and found milk in a little dish,
and white bread to break into it, so that she could eat her fill. When
she was satisfied, she said, "It is now the time when the hens at home go
to roost, I am so tired I could go to bed too." Then the dove flew to her
again, and brought another golden key in its bill, and said, "Open that
tree there, and thou willt find a bed." So she opened it, and found a
beautiful white bed, and she prayed God to protect her during the night,
and lay down and slept. In the morning the dove came for the third time,
and again brought a little key, and said, "Open that tree there, and thou
wilt find clothes." And when she opened it, she found garments beset with
gold and with jewels, more splendid than those of any king's daughter.
So she lived there for some time, and the dove came every day and provided
her with all she needed, and it was a quiet good life.

Once, however, the dove came and said, "Wilt thou do something for my
sake?"  "With all my heart," said the girl. Then said the little dove,
"I will guide thee to a small house; enter it, and inside it, an old
woman will be sitting by the fire and will say, 'Good-day.' But on thy
life give her no answer, let her do what she will, but pass by her on
the right side; further on, there is a door, which open, and thou wilt
enter into a room where a quantity of rings of all kinds are lying,
amongst which are some magnificent ones with shining stones; leave them,
however, where they are, and seek out a plain one, which must likewise
be amongst them, and bring it here to me as quickly as thou canst." The
girl went to the little house, and came to the door. There sat an old
woman who stared when she saw her, and said, "Good-day my child." The
girl gave her no answer, and opened the door. "Whither away," cried the
old woman, and seized her by the gown, and wanted to hold her fast,
saying, "That is my house; no one can go in there if I choose not to
allow it." But the girl was silent, got away from her, and went straight
into the room. Now there lay on the table an enormous quantity of rings,
which gleamed and glittered before her eyes. She turned them over and
looked for the plain one, but could not find it. While she was seeking,
she saw the old woman and how she was stealing away, and wanting to get
off with a bird-cage which she had in her hand. So she went after her
and took the cage out of her hand, and when she raised it up and looked
into it, a bird was inside which had the plain ring in its bill. Then
she took the ring, and ran quite joyously home with it, and thought the
little white dove would come and get the ring, but it did not.  Then she
leant against a tree and determined to wait for the dove, and, as she
thus stood, it seemed just as if the tree was soft and pliant, and was
letting its branches down. And suddenly the branches twined around her,
and were two arms, and when she looked round, the tree was a handsome man,
who embraced and kissed her heartily, and said, "Thou hast delivered me
from the power of the old woman, who is a wicked witch. She had changed
me into a tree, and every day for two hours I was a white dove, and so
long as she possessed the ring I could not regain my human form." Then
his servants and his horses, who had likewise been changed into trees,
were freed from the enchantment also, and stood beside him. And he led
them forth to his kingdom, for he was a King's son, and they married,
and lived happily.



124 The Three Brothers

There was once a man who had three sons, and nothing else in the world
but the house in which he lived. Now each of the sons wished to have
the house after his father's death; but the father loved them all alike,
and did not know what to do; he did not wish to sell the house, because
it had belonged to his forefathers, else he might have divided the money
amongst them. At last a plan came into his head, and he said to his sons,
"Go into the world, and try each of you to learn a trade, and, when you
all come back, he who makes the best masterpiece shall have the house."

The sons were well content with this, an