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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.



Erin Shea, David Baird, and David Skinner, all undergraduates at Memorial
University of Newfoundland, under the direction of William Barker, and a


Household Tales by Brothers Grimm



by Jacob Grimm and Wilhelm Grimm



Translated by Margaret Hunt



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 peddler-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 peddler-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 horses, 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 thought 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 him for 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 and 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 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, and the eldest determined to be a
blacksmith, the second a barber, and the third a fencing-master. They
fixed a time when they should all come home again, and then each went
his way.

It chanced that