Grimms' complete fairy tales
- [Grimms' complete fairy tales]
- [Table of Contents]
Grimms' complete fairy tales
Grimm, Jacob, 1785-1863
Grimm, Wilhelm, 1786-1859
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Complete Fairy Tales
1. The Frog Prince i
2. The Gallant Tailor 4
3. The Giant and the Tailor 11
4. The Little Farmer 13
5. The Golden Key 17
6. Sharing Joy and Sorrow 18
7. The Nail 19
8. Tom Thumb 19
9. Tom Thumb's Travels 24
10. The Young Giant 28
11. Sweet Porridge 34
12. The Elves 35
13. Fair Katrinelje and Pif-Paf-Poltrie 38
14. The Old Beggar-Woman 39
15. The Jew Among Thorns 39
16. King Thrushbeard 43
17. Clever Gretel 47
18. Fitcher's Bird 49
19. The Robber Bridegroom 5^
20. Old Hildebrand 55
21. The Singing Bone 58
22. Maid Maleen 60
23. The Goose-Girl 65
24. The Skilful Huntsman 7^
25. The Princess in Disguise 75
26. Cinderella 80
27. Simeli Mountain 86
28. The Glass Coffin 88
29. Rapunzel 93
30. The Sleeping Beauty 96
31. Old Rinkrank 99
32. Hansel and Gretel 101
33. The Straw, the Coal, and the Bean 107
34. The Death of the Hen 108
35. The Rabbit's Bride 110
36. The Hare and the Hedgehog 111
37. The Dog and the Sparrow 114
38. Old Sultan 116
39. Mr. Korbes 118
40. The Vagabonds 119
41. The Owl 121
42. The Bremen Town Musicians 123
43. The Wonderful Musician 126
44. The Mouse, the Bird, and the Sausage 128
45. The Crumbs on the Table 129
46. The Cat and the Mouse in Partnership 130
47. The Spider and the Flea 132
48. The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids 134
49. The Wolf and the Fox 136
50. The Wolf and the Man 13!8
51. Gossip Wolf and the Fox 139
52. Little Red Riding Hood 140
53. How Mrs. Fox Married Again 143
54. The Fox and the Geese 146
55. The Fox and the Horse 147
56. The Fox and the Cat 148
57. The Sole 148
58. The Willow-Wren 149
59. The Willow-Wren and the Bear 152
60. The Little Folks' Presents 154
61. The Elf 156
62. The Foundling Bird 160
63. The Water of Life 162
64. The Water Sprite 167
65. The Table, the Ass, and the Stick 168
66. One-Eye, Two-Eyes, and Three-Eyes 176
67. The Knapsack, the Hat, and the Horn 183
68. Sweetheart Roland 187
69. The Devil's Three Gold Hairs 191
70. The Griflfin i97
71. The Sea-Hare 203
72. The Maiden Without Hands 205
73. The Pink 211
74. Mother Hulda 215
75. The True Bride 218
76. The Three Little Birds 223jj. The Three Snake-Leaves 227
^ 78. The White Snake 231
79. The Three Spinners 234
80. Rumpelstiltskin 236
81. The Queen Bee 239
82. The Golden Goose 241
83. The Three Feathers 244
84. The Hut in the Forest 247
85. Donkey Cabbages 251
86. Snow-White and Rose-Red 257
87. The Poor Miller's Boy and the Cat 262
88. The Old Woman in the Wood 265
89. The Lambkin and the Little Fish 267
90. The Juniper Tree 268
91. Jorinda and Joringel 276
92. The Goose-Girl at the Well 278
93. The Three Little Men in the Wood 286
94. The White Bride and the Black Bride 290
95, Brother and Sister 294
96. The Gold Children 299
97. The Twin Brothers 304
98. Ferdinand the Faithful and Ferdinand the Unfaithful 324
99. The Three Black Princesses 328
100. Snow-White and the Seven Dwarfs 330
101. The Shoes That Were Danced to Pieces 337
102. The Boots of Buffalo Leather 340
103. The Six Servants 343
104. Six Soldiers of Fortune 349
105. The Two Travelers 353
106. The Ear of Com 361
107. The Aged Mother 362
108. The Hazel Branch 363
109. The Old Grandfather's Comer 364
110. The Ungrateful Son 364
111. The Bittern and the Hoopoe 365
112. The Three Languages 366
113. The Star Money 368
114. The Poor Man and the Rich Man 368
115. The Stolen Pennies 372
116. The Shroud 373
117. The Wilful Child 373
118. The Rose 374
119. The Tailor in Heaven 374
120. Poverty and Humility Lead to Heaven 376
121. The Flail from Heaven 377
122. The Moon 378
123. The Peasant in Heaven 380
124. Eve's Various Children 380
125. The Pooi Bo> in the Grave 382
126. Our Lady's Child 385
127. Gambling Hansel 388
128. The Old Man Made Young Again 391
129. The Loids Animals and the Devil's 392
130. Master Pfriem 393
131. The Heavenly Wedding 396
132. God's Food 397
133. St. Joseph in the Forest 398
134. The Three Green Twigs 400
135. Our Lady's Little Glass 402
136. Brother Frolick 403
137. The Bright Sun Brings It to Light 411
138. The Sparrow and His Four Children 413
139. The Duration of Life 415
140. The Twelve Apostles 416
141. Faithful John 417
142. The Six Swans 424
143. The Seven Ravens 428
144. The Twelve Brothers 431
145. Iron John 435
146. The King's Son Who Feared Nothing 441
147. The Drummer 446
148. The Two Kings' Children 454
149. The Iron Stove 461
150. The Singing, Soaring Lark 465
151. The Nixie of the Mill-Pond 470
152. The Raven 474
153. The Crystal Ball 479
154. The Donkey 481
155. Hans the Hedgehog 484
156. The King of the Golden Mountain 488
157. The Golden Bird 493
158. Strong Hans 500
159. The Blue Light 505
160. The Fisherman and His Wife 509i6i. The Good Bargain 515
162. Prudent Hans 519
163. Hans in Luck 523
164. Clever Else 527
165. Hans Married 530
166. The Youth Who Could Not Shiver and Shake 532
167. Fred and Kate 541
168. Wise Folks 547
169. The Lazy Spinner 550
170. The Three Sluggards 552
171. The Twelve Idle Servants 553
172. La2y Harry 555
173. Odds and Ends 557
174. Brides on Trial 558
175. The Spindle, the Shuttle, and the Needle 558
176. The Peasant's Wise Daughter 561
177. The Shepherd Boy 564
178. The Master-Thief 565
179. The Three Brothers 571
180. The Four Skilful Brothers 572
181. Tales of Snakes 576
182. The Turnip 577
183. The Twelve Huntsmen 580
184. The Maid of Brakel 583
185. Going Traveling 583
186. Knoist and His Three Sons 584
187. The Story of Schlauraffen Land 585
188. The Ditmarsch Tale of Wonders 586
189. Domestic Servants 586
190. The Rogue and His Master 587
191. The Wise Servant 589
192. The Seven Swabians 589
193. Lean Lisa 592
194. Godfather Death 593
195. Death's Messengers 596
196. The Wonderful Glass 597
197. The Old Witch 599
198. The Devil's Sooty Brother 600
199. Bearskin 602
200. The Devil and His Grandmother 606
201. The Grave Mound 609
202. The Peasant and the Devil 612
203. The Three Apprentices 613
204. Doctor Knowall 616
205. The Three Army Surgeons 617
206. The Spirit in the Bottle 620
207. The Three Children of Fortune 623
208. The Cunning Little Tailor 626
209. The Riddle 628
210. A Riddling Tale 631
211. The Beam 631
Complete Fairy Tales
Long ago, when wishes often came true, there lived a King whosedaughters were all handsome, but the youngest was so beautifulthat the sun himself, who has seen everything, was bemused everytime he shone over her because of her beauty. Near the royal castlethere was a great dark wood, and in the wood under an old lindentree was a well; and when the day was hot, the King's daughterused to go forth into the wood and sit by the brink of the cool well,and if the time seemed long, she would take out a golden ball, andthrow it up and catch it again, and this was her favorite pastime.
Now it happened one day that the golden ball, instead of fallingback into the maiden's little hand which had sent it aloft, droppedto the ground near the edge of the well and rolled in. The King'sdaughter followed it with her eyes as it sank, but the well wasdeep, so deep that the bottom could not be seen. Then she began toweep, and she wept and wept as if she could never be comforted.
And in the midst of her weeping she heard a voice saying to her,''What ails you. King's daughter? Your tears would melt a heart ofstone."
And when she looked to see where the voice came from, therewas nothing but a frog stretching his thick ugly head out of thewater. "Oh, is it you, old waddler?" said she; "I weep because mygolden ball has fallen into the well."
"Never mind, do not weep," answered the frog; *T can help you;but what will you give me if I fetch up your ball again?"
"Whatever you like, dear frog," said she; "any of my clothes, mypearls and jewels, or even the golden crown that I wear."
"Your clothes, your pearls and jewels, and your golden crown arenot for me," answered the frog; 'TDut if you would love me, andhave me for your companion and play-fellow, and let me sit by youat table, and eat from your plate, and drink from yoiur cup, and
sleep in your little bed—if you would promise all this, then would Idive below the water and fetch you your golden ball again."
"Oh yes," she answered; "I will promise it all, whatever youwant; if you will only get me my ball again." But she thought toherself, "What nonsense he tallcsl as if he could do anything but sitin the water and croak with the other frogs, or could possibly be anyone's companion."
But the frog, as soon as he heard her promise, drew his headluider the water and sank down out of sight, but after a while hecame to the surface again with the ball in his mouth, and he threwit on the grass.
The King's daughter was overjoyed to see her pretty playthingagain, and she caught it up and ran oflF with it.
"Stop, stop!" cried the frog; "take me up too; I cannot run as fastas you!"
But it was of no use, for croak, croak after her as he might, shewould not listen to him, but made haste home, and very soon forgotall about the poor frog, who had to betake himself to his well again.
The next day, when the King's daughter was sitting at table withthe King and all the court, and eating from her golden plate, therecame something pitter-patter up the marble stairs, and then therecame a knocking at the door, and a voice crying, "Yoimgest King'sdaughter, let me in!"
And she got up and ran to see who it could be, but when sheopened the door, there was the frog sitting outside. Then she shutthe door hastily and went back to her seat, feeling very imeasy.
The King noticed how quickly her heart was beating, and said,"My child, what are you afraid of? Is there a giant standing at thedoor ready to carry you away?" "Oh no," answered she; "no giant,but a horrid frog." "And what does the frog want?" asked the King.
"O dear father," answered she, "when I was sitting by the wellyesterday, and playing with my golden ball, it fell into the water,and while I was crying for the loss of it, the frog came and got itagain for me on condition I would let him be my companion, but Inever thought that he could leave the water and come after me; butnow there he is outside the door, and he wants to come in to me."
And then they all heard him knocking the second time andcrying,
"youngest King's daughter.Open to me!By the well waterWhat promised you me?
The Frog Prince 3
Youngest King's daughterNow open to meF'
"That which thou hast promised must thou perform," said theKing; "so go now and let him in."
So she went and opened the door, and the frog hopped in, fol-lowing at her heels, till she reached her chair. Then he stopped andcried, "Lift me up to sit by you."
But she delayed doing so until the King ordered her. When oncethe frog was on the chair, he wanted to get on the table, and therehe sat and said, "Now push your golden plate a little nearer, so thatwe may eat together."
And so she did, but everybody might see how unwilling she was,and the frog feasted heartily, but every morsel seemed to stick inher throat.
"I have had enough now," said the frog at last, "and as I amtired, you must carry me to your room, and make ready your silkenbed, and we will lie down and go to sleep."
Then the King's daughter began to weep, and was afraid of thecold frog, that nothing would satisfy him but he must sleep in herpretty clean bed. Now the King grew angry with her, saying, "Thatwhich thou hast promised in thy time of necessity, must thou nowperform."
So she picked up the frog with her finger and thumb, carried himupstairs and put him in a comer, and when she had lain down tosleep, he came creeping up, saying, "I am tired and want sleep asmuch as you; take me up, or I wiU tell your father."
Then she felt beside herself with rage, and picking him up, shethrew him with all her strength against the wall, crying, "Now willyou be quiet, you horrid frogi"
But as he fell, he ceased to be a frog, and became all at once aPrince with beautiful kind eyes. And it came to pass that, with herfather s consent, they became bride and bridegroom. And he toldher how a wicked witch had bound him by her spells, and how noone but she alone could have released him, and that they twowould go together to his father's kingdom. And there came to thedoor a carriage drawn by eight white horses, with white plumies ontheir heads, and with golden harness, and behind the carriage wasstanding faithful Henry, the servant of the young Prince.
Now, faithful Henry had suffered such care and pain when hismaster was turned into a frog, that he had been obliged to wearthree iron bands over his heart, to keep it from breaking with trou-
ble and anxiety. When the carriage started to take the Prince to hiskingdom, and faithful Henry had helped them both in, he got upbehind, and was full of joy at his master's deliverance. And whenthey had gone a part of the way, the Prince heard a sound at theback of the carriage, as if something had broken, and he turnedround and cried, "Henry, the wheel must be breakingl" but Henryanswered,
"The wheel does not break,'Tis the hand round my heartThat, to lessen its ache.When I grieved for your sake,I bound round my heart."
Again, and yet once again there was the same sound, and thePrince thought it must be the wheel breaking. But it was the break-ing of the other bands from faithful Henry's heart, because he wasso relieved and happy.
The Gallant Tailor
One summer morning a little tailor was sitting on his board nearthe window, and working cheerfully with all his might, when anold woman came down the street crying, "Good jelly to selll Goodjelly to selll"
The cry soimded pleasant in the little tailor's ears, so he put hishead out of the window, and called out, "Here, my good woman-come here, if you want a customer."
So the poor woman cHmbed the steps with her heavy basket, andwas obliged to impack and display all her pots to the tailor. Helooked at every one of them, and lifting all the lids, applied hisnose to each, and said at last, "The jelly seems pretty good; youmay weigh me out four half ounces, or I don't mind having a quar-ter of a pound."
The woman, who had expected to find a good customer, gavehim what he asked for, but went off angry and grumbling.
"This jelly is the very thing for me," cried the little tailor; "it willgive me strength and cunning"; and he took down the bread fromthe cupboard, cut a whole round of the loaf, and spread the jelly on
it, laid it near him, and went on stitching more gallantly than ever.All the while the scent of the sweet jelly was spreading throughoutthe room, where there were quantities of flies, who were attractedby it and flew to partake.
"Now then, who asked you to come?" said the tailor, and drovethe unbidden guests away. But the flies, not understanding his lan-guage, were not to be got rid of like that, and returned in largernumbers than before. Then the tailor, not being able to stand it anylonger, took from his chimney-comer a ragged cloth, and saying,"Now, I'll let you have itl" beat it among them unmercifully. Whenhe ceased, and counted the slain, he found seven lying dead beforehim. "This is indeed somewhat," he said, wondering at his own gal-lantry; "the whole town shall know this."
So he hastened to cut out a belt, and he stitched it, and put on itin large capitals, "Seven at one blowl" "—The town, did I sayl" saidthe Httle tailor; "the whole world shall know itl" And his heartquivered with joy, like a lamb's tail.
The tailor fastened the belt round him, and began to think ofgoing out into the world, for his workshop seemed too small for hisworship. So he looked about in all the house for something thatwould be useful to take with him, but he found nothing but an oldcheese, which he put in his pocket. Outside the door he noticedthat a bird had got caught in the bushes, so he took that and put itin his pocket with the cheese. Then he set out gallantly on his way,and as he was light and active he felt no fatigue.
The way led over a mountain and when he 1 cached the topmostpeak he saw a terrible giant sitting there and looking about him athis ease. The tailor went bravely up to him, called out to him, andsaid, "Comrade, good day! There you sit looking over the Madeworld! I am on the way thither to seek my fortune; have you afancy to go with me?"
The giant looked at the tailor contemptuously, and said, "You lit-tle rascall You miserable fellowl"
"That may be!" answered the little tailor, and undoing his coathe showed the giant his belt; "you can read there whether I am aman or not!"
The giant read: "Seven at one blow!" and thinking it meant menthat the tailor had killed, felt at once more respect for the littlefellow. But as he wanted to prove him, he took up a stone andsqueezed it so hard that water came out of it. "Now you can dothat," said the giant—"that is, if you have the strength for it."
"That's not much," said the little tailor, "1 call that play," and he
put his hand in his pocket and took out the cheese and squeezed it,so that the whey ran out of it. "Well," said he, "what do you thinkof that?"
The giant did not know what to say to it, for he could not havebelieved it of the little man. Then the giant took up a stone andthrew it so high that it was nearly out of sight. "Now, little fellow,suppose you do that!"
"Well thrown," said the tailor; "but the stone fell back to earthagain—I will throw you one that vnll never come back." So he feltin his pocket, took out the bird, and threw it into the air. And thebird, when it found itself at liberty, took wing, flew off, and re-turned no more. "What do you think of that, comrade?" asked thetailor.
"There is no doubt that you can throw," said the giant; "but wevidll see if you can carry."
He led the little tailor to a mighty oak tree which had beenfeUed, and was lying on the ground, and said, "Now, if you arestrong enough, help me to carry this tree out of the wood."
"Willingly," answered the Httle man; "you take the trunk onyour shoulders, I vnU. take the branches with all their foliage, that ismuch the most diflBcult."
So the giant took the trunk on his shoulders, and the tailor seatedhimself on a branch, and the giant, who could not see what he wasdoing, had the whole tree to carry, and the little man on it as well.And the little man was very cheerful and merry, and whistled thetune: "There were three tailors riding by" as if carrying the treewas mere child's play. The giant, when he had struggled on underhis heavy load a part of the way, was tired out, and cried, "Lookhere, I must let go the treel"
The tailor jumped off quickly, and taking hold of the tree withboth arms, as if he were carrying it, said to the giant, "You see youcan't carry the tree though you are such a big fellowl"
They went on together a little farther, and presently they came toa cherry tree, and the giant took hold of the topmost branches,where the ripest fruit hung, and pulling them downwards, gavethem to the tailor to hold, bidding him eat. But the little tailor wasmuch too weak to hold the tree, and as the giant let go, the treesprang back, and the tailor was caught up into the air. And whenhe dropped down again without any damage, the giant said to him,"How is this? Haven't you strength enough to hold such a weaksprig as that?"
'Tt is not strength that is lacking," answered the little tailor;
*Tiow should it be to one who has slain seven at one blowl I justjumped over the tree because the hunters are shooting down therein the bushes. You jump it too, if you can."
The giant made the attempt, and not being able to vault the tree,he remained hanging in the branches, so that once more the littletailor got the better of him. Then said the giant, "As you are such agallant fellow, suppose you come with me to oiur den, and stay thenight."
The tailor was quite willing, and he followed him. When theyreached the den there sat some other giants by the fire, and eachhad a roasted sheep in his hand, and was eating it. The little tailorlooked round and thought, There is more elbow-room here than inmy workshop."
And the giant showed him a bed, and told him he had better liedown upon it and go to sleep. The bed was, however, too big forthe tailor, so he did not stay in it, but crept into a comer to sleep.As soon as it was midnight the giant got up, took a great staff ofiron and beat the bed through with one stroke, and supposed hehad made an end of that grasshopper of a tailor. Very early in themorning the giants went into the wood and forgot all about the lit-tle tailor, and when they saw him coming after them alive andmerry, they were terribly frightened, and, thinking he was going toIdll them, they ran away in all haste.
So the httle tailor marched on, always following his nose. Andafter he had gone a great way he entered the court-yard belongingto a King's palace, and there he felt so overpowered with fatiguethat he lay down and fell asleep. In the meanwhile came variouspeople, who looked at him very curiously, and read on his belt,"Seven at one blowl"
"Ohl" said they, "why should this great lord come here in time ofpeace? What a mighty champion he must bel"
Then they went and told the King about him, and they thoughtthat if war should break out what a worthy and useful man hewould be, and that he ought not to be allowed to depart at anyprice. The King then summoned his council, and sent one of hiscourtiers to the little tailor to beg him, as soon as he should wakeup, to consent to serve in the King's army. So the messenger stoodand waited at the sleeper's side until his limbs began to stretch, andhis eyes to open, and then he carried his answer back. And the an-swer was: "That was the reason for which I came. I am ready toenter the King's service."
So he was received into it very honorably, and a separate dwell-ing set apart for him.
But the rest of the soldiers were very much set against the littletailor, and they wished him a thousand miles away. "What shall bedone about it?" they said among themselves; "if we pick a quarreland fight with him then seven of us will fall at each blow. That willbe of no good to us."
So they came to a resolution, and went all together to the Kingto ask for their discharge. "We never intended," said they, "to servewith a man who kills seven at a blow."
The King felt sorry to lose all his faithful servants because of oneman, and he wished that he had never seen him, and would will-ingly get rid of him if he might. But he did not dare to dismiss thehttle tailor for fear he should kiU all the King's people, and placehimself upon the throne. He thought a long while about it, and atlast made up his mind what to do. He sent for the Httle tailor, andtold him that as he was so great a warrior he had a proposal tomake to him. He told him that in a wood in his dominions dwelt twogiants, who did great damage by robbery, murder, and fire, andthat no man durst go near them for fear of his life. But that if thetailor should overcome and slay both these giants the King wouldgive him his only daughter in marriage, and half his kingdom asdowry, and that a hundred horsemen should go with him to givehim assistance.
"That would be something for a man like mel" thought the Httletailor, "a beautiful Princess and half a kingdom are not to be hadevery day," and he said to the King, "Oh yes, I can soon overcomethe giants, and yet have no need of the hundred horsemen; he whocan Idll seven at one blow has no need to be afraid of two."
So the Httle tailor set out, and the hundred horsemen followedhim. When he came to the border of the wood he said to his escort,"Stay here while I go to attack the giants."
Then he sprang into the wood, and looked about him right andleft. After a while he caught sight of the two giants; they werelying down under a tree asleep, and snoring so that aU the branchesshook. The Httle tailor, all aHve, filled both his pockets with stonesand cHmbed up into the tree, and made his way to an overhangingbough, so that he could seat himself just above the sleepers; andfrom there he let one stone after another fall on the chest of one ofthe giants. For a long time the giant was quite unaware of this, butat last he waked up and pushed his comrade, and said, "What areyou hitting me for?"
The Gallant Tailor 9
"You are dreaming," said the other, "I am not touching you."And they composed themselves again to sleep, and the tailor let falla stone on the other giant.
"What can that be?" cried he, "what are you casting at me?" "Iam casting nothing at you," answered the first, grumbhng.
They disputed about it for a while, but as they were tired, theygave it up at last, and their eyes closed once more. Then the littletailor began his game anew, picked out a heavier stone and threw itdown with force upon the first giant's chest.
"This is too muchl" cried he, and sprang up like a madman andstruck his companion such a blow that the tree shook above them.The other paid him back with ready coin, and they fought withsuch fury that they tore up trees by their roots to use for weaponsagainst each other, so that at last they both of them lay dead uponthe ground. And now the little tailor got down.
"Another piece of luckl" said he, "that the tree I was sitting indid not get torn up too, or else I should have had to jump like asquirrel from one tree to another."
Then he drew his sword and gave each of the giants a few hacksin the breast, and went back to the horsemen and said, "The deedis done, I have made an end of both of them, but it went hard withme; in the struggle they rooted up trees to defend themselves, butit was of no use, they had to do with a man who can kill seven atone blow."
"Then are you not wounded?" asked the horsemen. "Nothing ofthe sortl" answered the tailor, "I have not turned a hair."
The horsemen still would not believe it, and rode into the woodto see, and there they found the giants wallowing in their blood,and all about them lying the uprooted trees.
The little tailor then claimed the promised boon, but the Kingrepented him of his offer, and he sought again how to rid himself ofthe hero. "Before you can possess my daughter and the half of mykingdom," said he to the tailor, "you must perform another heroicact. In the wood lives a unicorn who does great damage; you mustsecure him."
"A unicorn does not strike more terror into me than two giants.Seven at one blow!—that is my way," was the tailor's answer.
So, taking a rope and an axe with him, he went out into thewood, and told those who were ordered to attend him to wait out-side. He had not far to seek, the unicorn soon came out and sprangat him, as if he would make an end of him without delay. "Softly,softly," said he "most haste, worst speed," and remained standing
until the animal came quite near, then he slipped quietly behind atree. The unicorn ran wi^ all his might against the tree and stuckhis horn so deep into the trunk that he could not get it out again,and so was taken.
"Now I have you," said the tailor, coming out from behind thetree, and, putting the rope round the unicorn's neck, he took theaxe, set free the horn, and when all his party were assembled he ledforth the animal and brought it to the King.
The King did not yet wish to give him the promised reward, andset him a third task to do. Before the wedding could take place thetailor was to secure a wild boar which had done a great deal ofdamage in the wood. The huntsmen were to accompany him.
"All right," said the tailor, "this is child's play."
But he did not take the huntsmen into the wood, and they wereall the better pleased, for the wild boar had many a time before re-ceived them in such a way that they had no fancy to disturb him.When the boar caught sight of the tailor he ran at him with foam-ing mouth and gleaming tusks to bear him to the ground, but thenimble hero rushed into a chapel which chanced to be near, andjumped quickly out of a window on the other side. The boar ranafter him, and when he got inside the door shut after him, andthere he was imprisoned, for the creature was too big and un-wieldy to jimip out of the window too. Then the Uttle tailor calledthe huntsmen that they might see the prisoner with their own eyes;and then he betook himself to the King, who now, whether he likedit or not, was obliged to fulfil his promise, and give him his daugh-ter and the half of his kingdom. But if he had known that the greatwarrior was only a httle tailor he would have taken it still more toheart. So the wedding was celebrated with great splendor and littlejoy, and the tailor was made into a King.
One night the young Queen heard her husband talking in hissleep and saying, "Now boy, make me that waistcoat and patch methose breeches, or I will lay my yard measure about your shoul-ders!"
And so, as she perceived of what low birth her husband was, shewent to her father the next morning and told him all, and beggedhim to set her free from a man who was nothing better than a tai-lor. The King bade her be comforted, saying, "Tonight leave yourbedroom door open, my guard shall stand outside, and when he isasleep they shall come in and bind him and carry him off to a ship,and he shall be sent to the other side of the world."
So the wife felt consoled, but the King's water-bearer, who had
The Giant and the Tailor ii
been listening all the while, went to the little tailor and disclosed tohim the whole plan.
"I shall put a stop to all this," said he.
At night he lay down as usual in bed, and when his wife thoughtthat he was asleep, she got up, opened the door and lay downagain. The little tailor, who only made believe he waa asleep, bei^anto murmur plainly, "Now, boy, make me that waistcoat and patchme those breeches, or I will lay my yard measure about your shoul-ders! I have slain seven at one blow, killed two giants, caught a uni-corn, and taken a wild boar, and shall I be afraid of those who arestanding outside my room door?"
And when they heard the tailor say this, a great fear seized them;they fled away as if they had been wild hares, and none of themwould venture to attack him.
And so the little tailor remained a King all his lifetime.
The Giant and the Tailor
A CERTAIN TAILOR who was great at boasting but poor at doing, tookit into his head to go abroad for a while, and look about the world.As soon as he could manage it, he left his workshop, and wanderedon his way, over hill and dale, sometimes hither, sometimes thither,but ever on and on. Once when he was out he perceived in the bluedistance a steep hill, and behind it a tower reaching to the clouds,which rose up out of a wild dark forest. "Thunder and lightning,"cried the tailor, "what is that?" and as he was strongly goaded bycuriosity, he went boldly towards it. But what made the tailor openhis eyes and mouth when he came near it, was to see that the towerhad legs, and leapt in one bound over the steep hill, and was nowstanding as an all-powerful giant before him.
"What do you want here, you little fly's leg?" cried the giant,v^th a voice as if it were thundering on every side. The tailorwhimpered, "I want just to look about and see if I can earn a bit ofbread for myself in this forest." "If that is what you are after," saidthe giant, "you may have a place with me." "If it must be whynot? What wages shall I receive?" "You shall hear what wages youshall have. Every year three hundred and sixty-five days, and whenit is leap-year, one more into the bargain. Does that suit you?" "AH
right," replied the tailor, and thought, in his own mind, "a manmust cut his coat according to his cloth; I will try to get away asfast as I can."
On this the giant said to him, "Go, little ragamuffin, and fetch mea jug of water." "Had I not better bring the well itself at once, andthe spring too?" asked the boaster, and went with the pitcher to thewater. "WhatI the well and the spring too," growled the giant in hisbeard, for he was rather clownish and stupid, and began to beafraid. "That knave is not a fool, he has a wizard in his body. Be onyour guard, old Hans, this is no serving-man for you."
When the tailor had brought the water, the giant bade him gointo the forest, and cut a couple of blocks of wood and bring themback. "Why not the whole forest at once, with one stroke. Thewhole forest, young and old, with all that is there, both rough andsmooth?" asked the little tailor, and went to cut the wood. "What!the whole forest, young and old, with all that is there, both roughand smooth, and the well and its spring too," growled the credulousgiant in his beard, and was still more terrified. "The knave can domuch more than bake apples, and has a wizard in his body. Be onyour guard, old Hans, this is no serving-man for youl"
When the tailor had brought the wood, the giant commandedhim to shoot two or three wild boars for supper. "Why not rather athousand at one shot, and bring them all here?" inquired the osten-tatious tailor. "Whatl" cried the timid giant in great terror. "Letwell alone tonight, and lie down to rest."
The giant was so terribly alarmed that he could not close an eyeall night long for thinking what would be the best way to get rid ofthis accursed sorcerer of a servant. Time brings counsel. Nextmorning the giant and the tailor went to a marsh, round whichstood a number of willow trees. Then said the giant, "Hark you,tailor, seat yourself on one of the willow-branches, I long of aUthings to see if you are big enough to bend it down." All at once thetailor was sitting on it, holding his breath, and making himself soheavy that the bough bent down. When, however, he was com-pelled to draw breath, it hurried him (for unfortunately he had notput his goose in his pocket) so high into the air that he never wasseen again, and this to the great delight of the giant. If the tailorhas not fallen down again, he must stiU be hovering about in theair.
There was a certain village where lived many rich farmers andonly one poor one, whom they called the Little Farmer. He had noteven a cow, and still less had he money to buy one; and he and hisvidfe greatly wished for such a thing. One day he said to her, "Lis-ten, I have a good idea; it is that your godfather the joiner shallmake us a calf of wood and paint it brown, so as to look just likeany other; and then in time perhaps it will grow big and become acow."
This notion pleased the wife, and godfather joiner set to work tosaw and plane, and soon turned out a calf complete, with its headdown and neck stretched out as if it were grazing.
The next morning, as the cows were driven to pasture, the LittleFarmer called out to the drover, "Look here, I have got a little calfto go, but it is still young and must be carried."
"All right!" said the drover, and tucked it imder his arm, carriedit into the meadows, and stood it in the grass. So the calf stayedwhere it was put, and seemed to be eating all the time, and thedrover thought to himself, 'It wiM soon be able to run alone, if itgrazes at that rate!"
In the evening, when the herds had to be driven home, he said tothe calf, 'If you can stand there eating like that, you can just walkofiF on your own four legs; I am not going to lug you imder my armagain!"
But the Little Farmer was standing by his house-door, and wait-ing for his calf; and when he saw the cow-herd coming through thevillage v^dthout it, he asked what it meant. The cow-herd answered,'It is stiU out there eating away, and never attended to the call,and would not come vvdth the rest."
Then the Little Farmer said, "I wiH teU you what, I must havemy beast brought home."
And they went together through the fields in quest of it, butsome one had stolen it, and it was gone. And the drover said,"Mostly likely it has run away."
But the Little Farmer said, "Not it!" and brought the cow-herdbefore the bailiff, who ordered him for his carelessness to give theLittle Farmer a cow for the missing calf.
So now the Little Farmer and his wife possessed their long-wished-for cow; they rejoiced with all their hearts, but unfortu-nately they had no fodder for it, and could give it nothing to eat, sothat before long they had to Idll it. Its flesh they salted down, andthe Little Fanner went to the town to sell the skin and buy a newcalf with what he got for it. On the way he came to a mill, where araven was sitting with broken wings, and he took it up out of pityand wrapped it in the skin. The weather was very stormy, and itblew and rained, so he turned into the mill and asked for shelter.
The miller s wife was alone in the house, and she said to the Lit-tle Farmer, "Well, come in and lie down in the straw," and shegave him a piece ot bread and cheese. So the Little Farmer ate, andthen lay down with his skin near him, and the miller's wife thoughthe was sleeping with fatigue. After a while in came another man,and the miller's wife received him very well, saying, "My husbandis out; we will make good cheer."
The Little Farmer Hstened to what they said, and when he heardgood cheer spoken of, he grew angry to think he had been put ofiEwith bread and cheese. For the miller's wife presently brought outroast meat, salad, cakes, and wine.
Now as the pair were sitting down to their feast, there came aknock at the door. "Oh dear," cried the woman, "it is my husband!"In a twinkling she popped the roast meat into the oven, the wineunder the pillow, the salad in the bed, the cakes under the bed, andthe man in the linen-closet. Then she opened the door to her hus-band, saying, "Thank goodness, you are here I What weather it is,as if the world were coming to an endl"
When the miller saw the Little Farmer lying in the straw, hesaid, "What fellow have you got there?" "Oh!" said the wife, "thepoor chap came in the midst of the wind and rain and asked forshelter, and I gave him some bread and cheese and spread somestraw for him."
The husband answered, "Oh well, I have no objection, only getme something to eat at once." But the wife said, "There is nothingbut bread and cheese."
"Anything will do for me," answered the miller, "bread andcheese for ever!" and catching sight of the Little Farmer, he cried,"Come along, and keep me company!" The Little Fanner did notwait to be asked twice, but sat down and ate.
After a while the miller noticed the sldn lying on the ground withthe raven wrapped up in it, and he said, "What have you gotthere?" The Little Farmer answered, "A fortime-teller." And the
The Little Farmer 15
miller asked, "Can he teU my fortune?" "Why not?" answered theLittle Farmer. "He will tell four things, and the fifth he keeps tohimself." Now the miller became very curious, and said, "Ask himto say something."
And the Little Farmer pinched the raVen, so that it croaked,"Crr, err." "What does he say?" asked the miller. And the LittleFarmer answered, "First he says that there is wine under the pil-low."
"That would be jollyl" cried the miller, and he went to look, andfound the wine, and then asked, "What next?"
So the Little Farmer made the raven croak again, and then said,"He says, secondly, that there is roast meat in the oven."
"That would be jollyl" cried the miller, and he went and looked,and found the roast meat. The Little Farmer made the fortune-teller speak again, and then said, "He says, thirdly, that there issalad in the bed."
"That would be jollyl" cried the miller, and went and looked andfound the salad. Once more the Little Farmer pinched the raven, sothat he croaked, and said, "He says, foiuthly and lastly, that thereare cakes under the bed."
"That would be jollyl" cried the miller, and he went and looked,and found the cakes.
And now the two sat down to table, and the miller's wife feltvery uncomfortable, and she went to bed and took all the keys withher. The miller was eager to know what the fifth thing could be,but the Little Farmer said, "Suppose we eat the four things inpeace first, for the fifth thing is a great deal worse."
So they sat and ate, and while they ate, they bargained to-gether as to how much the miller would give for knowing the fifththing; and at last they agreed upon three hundred doUars. Then theLittle Farmer pinched the raven, so that he croaked aloud. And themiller asked what he said, and the Little Farmer answered, "Hesays that there is a demon in the linen-closet."
"Then," said the miller, "that demon must come out of the linen-closet," and he unbarred the house-door, while the Little Farmergot the key of the Unen-closet from the miller's wife, and opened it.Then the man rushed forth, and out of the house, and the millersaid, "1 saw the black rogue with my own eyes; so that is a goodriddance."
And the Little Farmer took himself off by daybreak next morningwith the three hundred dollars.
And after this the Little Farmer by degrees got on in the world.
and built himself a good house, and the other fanners said, "Surelythe Little Fanner has been where it rains gold pieces, and hasbrought home money by the bushel."
And he was simimoned before the bailiff to say whence his richescame. And all he said was, "I sold my calf s sldn for three hundreddollars."
When the other farmers heard this they wished to share suchgood luck, and ran home, killed all their cows, skinned them inorder to sell them also for the same high price as the Little Farmer.And the bailiff said, '1 must be beforehand with them." So he senthis servant into the town to the skin-buyer, and he only gave herthree dollars for the sldn, and that was faring better than theothers, for when they came, they did not get as much as that, forthe sldn-buyer said, "What am I to do with all these skins?"
Now the other farmers were very angry with the Little Farmerfor misleading them, and they vowed vengeance against him, andwent to complain of his deceit to the bailiff. The poor Little Farmerwas with one voice sentenced to death, and to be put into a caskwith holes in it, and rolled into the water. So he was led to execu-tion, and a priest was fetched to say a mass for him, and the rest ofthe people had to stand at a distance. As soon as the Little Farmercaught sight of the priest he knew him for the man who was hid inthe linen-closet at the miller's. And he said to him, "As I let you outof the cupboard, you must let me out of the cask."
At that moment a shepherd passed with a flock of sheep, andthe Little Farmer knowing him to have a great wish to becomebailiff himself, called out with all his might, "No, I will not, and ifall the world asked me, I would noti"
The shepherd, hearing him, came up and asked what it was hewould not do. The Little Farmer answered, "They want to makeme bailiff, if I sit in this cask, but I will not do it!"
The shepherd said, 'If that is all there is to do in order to be-come bailiff I will sit in the cask and welcome." And the LittleFarmer answered, "Yes, that is all, just you get into the cask, and youwill become bailiff." So the shepherd agreed, and got in, and theLittle Farmer fastened on the top; then he collected the herd ofsheep and drove them away.
The priest went back to the parish-assembly, and told them themass had been said. Then they came and began to roll the cask intothe water, and as it went the shepherd inside called out, "I consentto be bailiffl"
They thought that it was the Little Farmer who spoke, and they
The Golden Key 17
answered, "All right; but first you must go down below and lookabout you a little," and they rolled the cask into the water.
Upon that the farmers went home, and when they reached thevillage, there they met the Little Farmer driving a flock of sheep,and looking quite calm and contented. The farmers were astonishedand cried, "Little Farmer, whence come you? How did you get outof the water?"
"Oh, easily," answered he, "I sank and sank until I came to thebottom; then I broke through the cask and came out of it, and therewere beautiful meadows and plenty of sheep feeding, so I broughtaway this flock with me."
Then said the farmers, "Are there any left?" "Oh yes," answeredthe Little Farmer, "more than you can possibly need."
Then the farmers agreed that they would go and fetch somesheep also, each man a flock for himself; and the baiUff said, "Mefirst." And they all went together, and in the blue sky there were lit-tle fleecy clouds Hke lambkins, and they were reflected in thewater; and the farmers cried out, "There are the sheep down thereat the bottom."
When the baihff heard that he pressed forward and said, '1 willgo first and look about me, and if things look well, I will call toyou." And he jiunped plump into the water, and they all thoughtthat the noise he made meant "Come," so the whole companyjumped in one after the other.
So perished all the proprietors of the village, and the LittleFarmer, as sole heir, became a rich man.
The Golden Key
In the winter time, when deep snow lay on the groimd, a poor boywas forced to go out on a sledge to fetch wood. When he hadgathered it together, and packed it, he wished, as he was so frozenwith cold, not to go home at once, but to light a fire and warm him-self a Kttle. So he scraped away the snow, and as he was thus clear-ing the ground, he found a tiny, gold key. Hereupon he thoughtthat where the key was, the lock must be also, and dug in theground and foimd an iron chest. "If the key does but fit it!" thoughthe; "no doubt there are precious things in that little box." He
searched, but no keyhole was there. At last he discovered one, butso small that it was hardly visible. He tried it, and the key fitted itexactly. Then he turned it once round, and now we must wait untilhe has quite unlocked it and opened the lid, and then we shalllearn what wonderful things were lying in that box.
Sharing Joy and Sorrow
There was once a tailor, who was a quarrelsome fellow, and hisvdfe, who was good, industrious, and pious, never could please him.Whatever she did, he was not satisfied, but grumbled and scolded,and knocked her about and beat her. As the authorities at lastheard of it, they had him summoned and put in prison in order tomake him better. He was kept for a while on bread and water, andthen set free again. He was forced, however, to promise not to beathis wife any more, but to live with her in peace, and share joy andsorrow with her, as married people ought to do.
All went on well for a time, but theil he fell into his old ways,and was surly and quarrelsome. And because he dared not beat her,he would seize her by the hair and tear it out. The woman escapedfrom him, and sprang out into the yard, but he ran after her withhis yard-meastire and scissors, and chased her about, and threw theyard-measure and scissors at her, and whatever else came in hisway. When he hit her he laughed, and when he missed her, hestormed and swore. This went on so long that the neighbors cameto the wife's assistance.
The tailor was again simimoned before the magistrates, and re-minded of his promise. "Dear gentlemen," said he, "I have kept myword; I have not beaten her, but have shared joy and sorrow withher." "How can that be," said the judge, "when she continuallybrings such heavy complaints against you?" "1 have not beaten her,but just because she looked so strange I wanted to comb her hairwith my hand; she, however, got away from me, and left me quitespitefully. Then I hurried after her, and in order to bring her backto her duty, I threw at her as a well-meant admonition whatevercame readily to hand. I have shared joy and sorrow with her also,for whenever I hit her I was full of joy, and she of sorrow; and
if I missed her, then she was joyful, and I sorry." The judges werenot satisfied with this answer, but gave him the reward he deserved.
A MERCHAJ^ had done good business at the fair; he had sold hiswares, and lined his money-bags with gold and silver. Then hewanted to travel homewards, and be in his own house before night-fall. So he packed his trunk with the money on his horse, and rodeaway.
At noon he rested in a town, and when he wanted to go fartherthe stable-boy brought out his horse and said, "A nail is wanting,sir, in the shoe of its left hind foot." "Let it be wanting," answeredthe merchant; "the shoe will certainly stay on for six miles I havestill to go. I am in a hiury."
In the afternoon, when he once more alighted and had his horsefed, the stable-boy went into the room to him and said, "Sir, a shoeis missing from your horse's left hind foot. Shall I take him to theblacksmith?" "Let it still be wanting," answered the man; "thehorse can very well hold out for the couple of miles which remain.I am in haste."
He rode forth, but before long the horse began to limp. It hadnot limped long before it began to stumble, and it had not stmnbledlong before it fell down and broke its leg. The merchant was forcedto leave the horse where it was, and unbuckle the trunk, take it onhis back, and go home on foot. And there he did not arrive untilquite late at night. "And that unlucky nail," said he to himself, "hascaused all this disaster."
Make haste slowly.
There was once a poor countryman who used to sit in the chimney-comer all evening and poke the fire, while his wife sat at her spin-ning-wheel.
And he used to say, "How dull it is without any children aboutUS; our house is so quiet, and other people's houses so noisy andmerryl"
"Yes," answered his wife, and sighed, "if we could only haveone, and that one ever so little, no bigger than my thumb, howhappy I should be! It would, indeed, be having our heart's desire."
Now, it happened that after a while the woman had a child whowas perfect in all his limbs, but no bigger than a thumb. Then theparents said, "He is just what we wished for, and we love him verymuch," and they named him according to his stature, "TomThvmib." And though they gave him plenty of nourishment, hegrew no bigger, but remained exactly the same size as when he wasfirst bom; and he had very good faculties, and was very quick andprudent, so that all he did prospered.
One day his father made ready to go into the forest to cut wood,and he said, as if to himself, "Now, I wish there was some one tobring the cart to me." "O father," cried Tom Thumb, "if I canbring the cart, let me alone for that, and in proper time, too!"
Then the father laughed, and said, "How will you manage that?You are much too Httle to hold the reins." "That has nothing to dowith it, father; while my mother goes on with her spinning I will sitin the horse's ear and tell him where to go." "Well," answered thefather, "we will try it for once."
When it was time to set off, the mother went on spinning, aftersetting Tom Thumb in the horse's ear; and so he drove off, crying,"Gee-up, gee-wo!"
So the horse went on quite as if his master were driving him, anddrew the wagon along the right road to the wood.
Now it happened just as they tinned a comer, and the littlefellow was calling out "Gee-up!" that two strange men passed by.
"Look," said one of them, "how is this? There goes a wagon, andthe driver is calling to the horse, and yet he is nowhere to be seen."*Tt is very strange," said the other; "we will follow the wagon, andsee where it belongs."
And the wagon went right through the forest, up to the placewhere the wood had been hewed. When Tom Thumb caught sightof his father, he cried out, 'Xook, father, here am I with the wagon;now, take me down."
The father held the horse with his left hand, and with the righthe lifted down his little son out of the horse's ear, and Tom Thumbsat down on a stump, quite happy and content. When the twostrangers saw him they were struck dumb with wonder. At last one
of them, taking the other aside, said to him, "Look here, the littlechap would make our fortune if we were to show him in the townfor money. Suppose we buy him."
So they went up to the woodcutter, and said, "Sell the little manto US; we will take care he shall come to no harm." "No," answeredthe father; "he is the apple of my eye, and not for all the money inthe world would I sell him."
But Tom Thmnb, when he heard what was going on, climbed upby his father's coat tails, and, perching himself on his shoulder, hewhispered in his ear, "Father, you might as well let me go. I willsoon come back again."
Then the father gave him up to the two men for a large piece ofmoney. They asked him where he would hke to sit. "Oh, put me onthe brim of your hat," said he. "There I can walk about and viewthe country, and be in no danger of falling off."
So they did as he wished, and when Tom Thumb had taken leaveof his father, they set off all together. And they traveled on until itgrew dusk, and the little fellow asked to be set down a little whilefor a change, and after some diflBculty they consented. So the mantook him down from his hat, and set him in a field by the roadside,and he ran away directly, and, after creeping about among the fur-rows, he slipped suddenly into a mouse-hole, just what he was look-ing for.
"Good evening, my masters, you can go home without me!" criedhe to them, laughing. They ran up and felt about with their sticksin the mouse-hole, but in vain. Tom Thumb crept farther and far-ther in, and as it was growing dark, they had to make the best oftheir way home, full of vexation, and with empty piurses.
When Tom Thumb found they were gone, he crept out of hishiding-place underground. "It is dangerous work groping aboutthese holes in the darkness," said he; "1 might easily break myneck."
But by good fortime he came upon an empty snail shell. "That'sall right," said he. "Now I can get safely through the night"; and hesettled himself down in it.
Before he had time to get to sleep, he heard two men pass by,and one was saying to the other, "How can we manage to get holdof the rich parson's gold and silver?" "I can tell you how," criedTom Thumb. "How is this?" said one of the thieves, quite fright-ened, "I hear some one speaki"
So they stood still and listened, and Tom Thmnb spoke again:"Take me with you; I will show you how to do it!" "Where are
you, then?" asked they. "Look about on the ground and noticewhere the voice comes from," answered he.
At last they found him, and lifted him up. "You little elf," saidthey, "how can you help us?" "Look here," answered he, "I caneasily creep between the iron bars of the parson's room and handout to you whatever you would Hke to have." "Very well," saidthey, "we will try what you can do."
So when they came to the parsonage-house, Tom Thumb creptinto the room, but cried out with all his might, "Will you have allthat is here?" So the thieves were terrified, and said, "Do speakmore softly, lest any one should be awaked."
But Tom Thumb made as if he did not hear them, and cried outagain, "What would you like? Will you have all that is here?" sothat the cook, who was sleeping in a room hard by, heard it, andraised herself in bed and listened. The thieves, however, in theirfear of being discovered, had run back part of the way, but theytook courage again, thinking that it was only a jest of the Uttlefellow's. So they came back and whispered to him to be serious,and to hand them out something.
Then Tom Thumb called out once more as loud as he could, "Ohyes, I will give it all to you, only put out your hands."
Then the listening maid heard him distinctly that time, andjumped out of bed, and burst open the door. The thieves ran off asif the wild huntsman were behind them; but the maid, as she couldsee nothing, went to fetch a light. And when she came back withone, Tom Thumb had taken himself off, without being seen by her,into the bam; and the maid, when she had looked in every hole andcorner and found nothing, went back to bed at last, and thoughtthat she must have been dreaming with her eyes and ears open.
So Tom Thumb crept among the hay, and found a comfortablenook to sleep in, where he intended to remain until it was day, andthen to go home to his father and mother. But other things were tobefall him; indeed, there is nothing but trouble and worry in thisworldl
The maid got up at dawn of day to feed the cows. The first placeshe went to was the bam, where she took up an armful of hay, andit happened to be the very heap in which Tom Thumb lay asleep.And he was so fast asleep, that he was aware of nothing, and neverwaked until he was in the mouth of the cow, who had taken him upwith the hay.
"Oh dear," cried he, "how is it that I have got into a mill!" buthe soon found out where he was, and he had to be very careful not
Tom Thumb 23
to get between the cow's teeth, and at last he had to descend intothe cow's stomach. "The windows were forgotten when this littleroom was built," said he, "and the sunshine cannot get in; there is nolight to be had."
His quarters were in every way unpleasant to him, and, what wasthe worst, new hay was constantly coming in, and the space wasbeing filled up. At last he cried out in his extremity, as loud as hecould, "No more hay for me! No more hay for me!" The maid wasthen milking the cow, and as she heard a voice, but could see noone, and as it was the same voice that she had heard in the night,she was so frightened that she fell off her stool, and spilt the milk.Then she ran in great haste to her master, crying, "Oh, master dear,the cow spoke!"
"You must be crazy," answered her master,' and he went himselfto the cow-house to see what was the matter. No sooner had he puthis foot inside the door, than Tom Thumb cried out again, "Nomore hay for mel No more hay for me!"
Then the parson himself was frightened, supposing that a badspirit had entered into the cow, and he ordered her to be put todeath. So she was kiUed, but the stomach, where Tom Thiunb waslying, was thrown upon a dunghill. Tom Thumb had great troubleto work his way out of it, and he had just made a space big enoughfor his head to go through, when a new misfortune happened. Ahungry wolf ran up and swallowed the whole stomach at one gulp.
But Tom Thumb did not lose courage. "Perhaps," thought he,"the wolf will listen to reason," and he cried out from the inside ofthe wolf, "My dear wolf, I can tell you where to get a splendidmeal!" "Where is it to be had?" asked the wolf. "In such and such ahouse, and you must creep into it through the drain, and there youwill find cakes and bacon and broth, as much as you can eat," andhe described to him his father's house.
The wolf needed not to be told twice. He squeezed himselfthrough the drain in the night, and feasted in the store-room to hisheart's content. When at last he was satisfied, he wanted to go awayagain, but he had become so big, that to creep the same way backwas impossible. This Tom Thumb had reckoned upon, and beganto make a terrible din inside the wolf, crying and calling as loud ashe could.
"Will you be quiet?" said the wolf; "you will wake the folks up!""Look here," cried the little man, "you are very well satisfied, andnow I will do something for my own enjoyment," and began againto make all the noise he could.
At last the father and mother were awakened, and they ran to theroom-door and peeped through the chink, and when they saw awolf in ocxjupation, they ran and fetched weapons—the man an axe,and the wife a scythe. *'Stay behind," said the man, as they enteredthe room; "when I have given him a blow, and it does not seem tohave killed him, then you must cut at him with your scythe."
Then Tom Thumb heard his father s voice, and cried, "Dear fa-ther, I am here in the wolfs inside."
Then the father called out full of joy, 'Thank heaven that wehave found our dear child!" and told his wife to keep the scythe outof the way, lest Tom Thumb should be hurt with it. Then he drewnear and struck the wolf such a blow on the head that he felldown dead; and then he fetched a knife and a pair of scissors, slitup the wolfs body, and let out the little fellow.
"Oh, what anxiety we have felt about youl" said the father. "Yes,father, I have seen a good deal of the world, and I am very glad tobreathe fresh air again."
"And where have you been aU this time?" asked his father. "Oh,I have been in a mouse-hole and a snail's shell, in a cow's stomachand a wolfs inside; now I think I will stay at home."
"And we will not part with you for all the kingdoms of the world,"cried the parents, as they kissed and hugged their dear little TomThumb. And they gave him something to eat and drink, and a newsuit of clothes, as his old ones were soiled with travel.
Tom Thumb's Travels
Thebe was once a tailor who had a son no higher than a thumb, sohe was called Tom Thumb. Notwithstanding his small size, he hadplenty of spirit, and one day he said to his father, "Father, go outinto the world I must and will."
"Very well, my son," said the old man, and taking a long darningneedle, he put a knob of sealing-wax on the end, saying, "Here is asword to take with you on your journey."
Now the little tailor wanted to have one more meal first, and sohe trotted into the kitchen to see what sort of farewell feast hismother had cooked for him. It was all ready, and the dish was
standing on the hearth. Then said he, "Mother, what is the faretoday?"
**You can see for yourself," said the mother. Then Tom Thumbran to the hearth and peeped into the dish, but as he stretched hisneck too far over it, the steam caught him and carried him up thechimney. For a time he floated about with the steam in the air, butat last he sank down to the ground. Then the little tailor found him-self out in the wide world, and he wandered about, and finally en-gaged himself to a master tailor, but the food was not good enoughfor him.
"Mistress," said Tom Thumb, "if you do not give us better vic-tuals, I shall go out early in the morning and write with a piece ofchalk on the house-door, 'Plenty of potatoes to eat, and but littlemeat; so good-bye, Mr. Potato.'"
"What are you after, grasshopper?" said the mistress, and grow-ing angry she seized a piece of rag to beat him o£F; but he crept un-derneath her thimble, and then peeped at her, and put his tongueout at her. She took up the thimble, and would have seized him,but he hopped among the rags, and as the mistress turned themover to find him, he stepped into a crack in the table. "He-heelMistressl" cried he, sticking out his head, and when she was just go-ing to grasp him, he jumped into the table-drawer. But in the endshe caught him, and drove him out of the house.
So he wandered on until he came to a great wood; and there hemet a gang of robbers that were going to rob the King's treasury.When they saw the little tailor, they thought to themselves, "Such alittle fellow might easily creep through a key-hole, and serve insteadof a pick-lock." "Holloal" cried one, "you giant Goliath, will youcome with us to the treasure-chamber? You can slip in, and thenthrow us out the money."
Tom Thumb considered a little, but at last he consented andwent with them to the treasure-chamber. Then he looked all overthe door above and below, but there was no crack to be seen; atlast he found one broad enough to let him pass, and he was get-ting through, when one of the sentinels that stood before the doorsaw him, and said to the other, "See what an ugly spider is crawl-ing therel I will put an end to him." 'Xet the poor creatm-e alone,"said the other, "it has done you no harm."
So Tom Thirnib got safely through the crack into the treasure-chamber, and he opened the window beneath which the thieves
were standing, and he threw them out one dollar after another. Justas he had well settled to the work, he heard the King coming totake a look at his treasure, and so Tom Thumb had to creep away.The King presently remarked that many good dollars were want-ing, but could not imagine how they could have been stolen, as thelocks and bolts were in good order, and everything seemed secure.And he went away, saying to the two sentinels, "Keep good guard;there is some one after the money."
When Tom Thumb had set to work anew, they heard the chink,chink of the money, and hastily rushed in to catch the thief. But thelittle tailor, as he heard them coming, was too quick for them, and,hiding in a comer, he covered himself up with a doUar, so thatnothing of him was to be seen, and then he mocked the sentinels,crying, "Here I am!" They ran about, and when they came near him,he was soon in another comer under a doUar, crying, "Here I ami"Then the sentinels ran towards him, and in a moment he was in athird comer, crying, "Here I ami" In this way he made fools ofthem, and dodged them so long about the treasure-chamber, thatthey got tired and went away. Then he set to work, and threw thedollars out of the window, one after the other, till they were allgone; and when it came to the last, as he flung it with aU his might,he jumped nimbly on it, and flew with it out of the window.
The robbers gave him great praise, saying, "You are a most val-iant hero; will you be oiu: captain?"
But Tom Thumb thanked them, and said he would like to see theworld first. Then they divided the spoil; but the Httle tailor's sharewas only one feirthing, which was all he was able to cairy.
Then binding his sword to his side, he bid the robbers good day,and started on his way. He applied to several master tailors, butthey would not have anything to do with him; and at last he hiredhimself as indoor servant at an inn. The maid-servants took a greatdislike to him, for he used to see everything they did without beingseen by them, and he told the master and mistress about what theytook from the plates, and what they carried away out of the cellar.And they said, "Wait a little, we will pay you out," and took coun-sel together to play him some mischievous trick.
Once when one of the maids was mowing the grass in the gardenshe saw Tom Thumb jimiping about and creeping among the cab-bages, and she* mowed him with the grass, tied all together in abundle, and threw it to the cows. Among the cows was a big blackone, who swallowed him down, without doing him any harm. But
Tom Thumb's Travels 27
he did not like his lodging, it was so dark, and there was no candleto be had. When the cow was being milked, he cried out,
"Strip, strap, strull.Will the pail soon be fullF'
But he was not understood because of the noise of the milk.
Presently the landlord came into the stable and said, "Tomorrowthis cow is to be slaughtered."
At that Tom Thumb felt very terrified; and with his shrillestvoice he cried, "Let me out first; I am sitting inside here!"
The master heard him quite plainly, but could not tell where thevoice came from. "Where are you?" asked he. "Inside the blackone," answered Tom Thumb, but the master, not understanding themeaning of it all, went away.
The next morning the cow was slaughtered. Happily, in all thecutting and slashing he escaped all harm, and he slipped among thesausage-meat. When the butcher came near to set to work, he criedwith all his might, "Don't cut so deep, don't cut so deep, I am un-derneath I" But for the sound of the butcher's knife his voice wasnot heard.
Now, poor Tom Thumb was in great straits, and he had to jumpnimbly out of the way of the knife, and finally he came throughWith a whole sldn. But he could not get quite away, and he had tolet himself remain with the lumps of fat to be put in a black pud-ding. His quarters were rather narrow, and he had to be hung up inthe chimney in the smoke, and to remain there a very long while.At last, when winter came, he was taken down, for the black pud-ding was to be set before a guest. And when the landlady cut theblack pudding in slices, he had to great care not to lift up his headtoo much, or it might be shaved off at the neck. At last he saw hisopportimity, took courage, and jumped out.
But as things had gone so badly with him in that house, TomThumb did not mean to stay there, but betook himself again to hiswanderings. His freedom, however, did not last long. In the openfields there came a fox who snapped him up without thinking.
"Oh, Mr. Fox," cried Tom Thumb, "here I am sticking in yourthroat; let me out again." "Very well," answered the fox. "It is trueyou are no better than nothing; promise me the hens in your fa-ther's yard, then I will let you go." "With all my heart," answeredTom Thumb, "you shall have them all, I promise you."
Then the fox let him go, and he ran home. When the father saw
his dear little son again, he gave the fox willingly all the hens thathe had.
"And look, besides, what a fine piece of money I've got for youl"said Tom Thumb, and handed over the farthing which he hadearned in his wanderings.
But how, you ask, could they let the fox devour aU the poorchicks? Why, you silly child, you know that yoiu: father would ratherhave you than the hens in his yardi
The Young Giant
A LONG TIME ago a countryman had a son who was as big as athumb, and did not become any bigger, and during several yearsdid not grow one hair's breadth. Once when the father was goingout to plough, the httle one said, "Father, I will go out with thee.""Thou wouldst go out with me?" said the father. "Stay here, thouwilt be of no use out there, besides thou mightst get lostl" ThenThmnbUng began to cry, and for the sake of peace his father puthim in his pocket, and took him with him.
When he was outside in the field, he took him out again, and sethim in a freshly-cut furrow.
While he was there, a great giant came over the hill. "Dost thousee that great monster?" said the father, for he wanted to frightenthe Httle fellow to make him good. "He is coming to fetch thee."The giant, however, had scarcely taken two steps with his long legsbefore he was in the furrow. He took up little Thumbling carefullywith two fingers, examined him, and without saying one word wentaway with him. His father stood by, but could not utter a sound forterror, and he thought nothing else but that his child was lost, andthat as long as he lived he should never set eyes on him again.
The giant, however, carried him home, suckled him, and Thum-bling grew and became taU 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 theboy was already so strong that he tore up a young tree out of theearth by the roots. But the giant thought, "We must do better thanthat," 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 enoughfor the giant; he again suckled him for two years, and when he thenwent with him into the forest and said, "Now, just tear up a properstick for me," the boy tore up the strongest oak tree from the earth,so that it spHt, and that was a mere trifle to him. "Now that willdo," said the giant, "thou art perfect," and took him back to thefield from whence he had brought him. His father was there follow-ing the plough. The young giant went up to him, and said, "Doesmy father see what a fine man his son has grown into?"
The farmer was alarmed, and said, "No, thou art not my son; Idon't want thee—leave mel" "Truly I am your son; allow me to doyour work, I can plough as well as you, nay better." "No, no, thouart not my son, and thou canst not plough—go awayl" However, ashe was afraid of this great man, he left hold of the plough, steppedback and stood at one side of the piece of land. Then the youthtook the plough, and just pressed it with one hand, but his graspwas so strong that the plough went deep into the earth. The farmercould not bear to see that, and called to him, "If thou art deter-mined to plough, thou must not press so hard on it, that makes badwork." The youth, however, unharnessed the horses, and drew theplough himself, saying, "Just go home, father, and bid my mothermake ready a large dish of food, and in the meantime I will go overthe field." Then the farmer went home, and ordered his wife toprepare the food; but the youth ploughed the field, which was twoacres large, quite alone, and then he harnessed himself to the har-row, and harrowed the whole of the land, using two harrows atonce. When he had done it, he went into the forest, and pulled uptwo oak trees, laid them across his shoulders, and hung one harrowon them behind and one before, and also one horse behind and onebefore, and carried all as if it had been a bundle of straw, to hisparents' house.
When he entered the yard, his mother did not recognize him, andasked, "Who is that horrible tall man?" The farmer said, "That isour son." She said, "No, that caimot be our son, we never had sucha tall one, ours was a little thing." She called to him, "Go away, wedo not want thee!" The youth was silent, but led his horses to thestable, gave them oats and hay, and all that they wanted. When hehad done this, he went into the parlor, sat down on the bench andsaid, "Mother, now I should like something to eat, will it soon beready?" Then she said, "Yes," and brought in two immense dishesfull of food, which would have been enough to satisfy herself andher 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 musthave more."
She did not dare to oppose him, and went and put a huge cal-dron 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, butit was still not suflBcient to appease his hunger. Then said he, "Fa-ther, I see well that with thee I shall never have food enough; ifthou will get me an iron staff which is strong, and which I cannotbreak against my knees, I will go out into the world."
The farmer was glad, put his two horses in his cart, and fetchedfrom the smith a staff so large and thick that the two horses couldonly just bring it away. The youth laid it across his knees, and snap!he broke it in two in the middle like a beanstick, and threw it away.
The father then harnessed four horses, and brought a bar whichwas 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, thou must harnessmore horses, and bring a stronger staff." So the father harnessedeight horses, and brought one which was so long and thick, that theeight horses could only just carry it. When the son took it in hishand, he broke a bit from the top of it also, and said, 'Tather, I seethat thou wilt not be able to procure me any such staff as I want, Iwill remain no longer with thee."
So he went away, and gave out that he was a smith's apprentice.He arrived at a village, wherein Hved a smith who was a greedyfellow, who never did a kindness to any one, but wanted everythingfor himself. The youth went into the smithy to him, and asked if heneeded a journeyman. "Yes," said the smith, and looked at him, andthought, "That is a strong fellow who will strike out well, and earnhis bread." So he asked, "How much wages dost thou want" "1don't want any at all," he replied, "only every fortnight, when theother journeymen are paid, I will give thee two blows, and thoumust bear them." The miser was heartily satisfied, and thought hewould thus save much money.
Next morning, the strange journeyman was to begin to work, butwhen the master brought the glowing bar, and the youth struck hisfirst blow, the iron flew asunder, and the anvil sank so deep into theearth, that there was no bringing it out again. Then the miser grewangry, and said, "Oh, but I can't make any use of thee, thou strikestfar too powerfully; what wilt thou have for the one blow?"
Then said he, "1 will only give thee quite a small blow, that's
all." And he raised his foot, and gave him such a kick that he flewaway over four loads of hay. Then he sought out the thickest ironbar in the smithy for himself, took it as a stick in his hand, andwent 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 fellowwho can do something, how much a year do you want as wages?"He again replied that he wanted no wages at all, but that everyyear he would give him three blows, which he must bear. Then thebailiff was satisfied, for he, too, was a covetous fellow. Next morn-ing all the servants were to go into the wood, and the others werealready up, but the head-servant was still in bed. Then one of themcalled to him, "Get up, it is time; we are going into the wood, andthou must go vvdth us."
"Ah," said he quite roughly and surlily, "you may just go, then; Ishall 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 withthem. The bailiff said they were to awake him again, and tell himto harness the horses. The head-man, however, said as before, "Justgo there, I shall be back again before any of you." And then hestayed in bed two hours longer. At length he arose from thefeathers, but first he got himself two bushels of peas from the loft,made himself some broth with them, ate it at his leisure, and whenthat was done, went and harnessed the horses, and drove into thewood.
Not far from the wood was fe ravine through which he had topass, so he first drove the horses on, and then stopped them, andwent behind the cart, took trees and brushwood, and made a greatbarricade, so that no horse could get through. When he was enter-ing the wood, the others were just driving out of it with theirloaded carts to go home; then said he to ihem, "Drive on, I wi]l stillget home before you do." He did not drive far into the wood, but atonce tore two of the very largest trees of all out of the earth, threwthem on his cart, and tirnied round. When he came to the barri-cade, the others were still standing there, not able to get through."Don't you see," said he, "that if you had stayed with me, youwould have got home just as quickly, and would have had anotherhour's sleep?"
He now wanted to drive on, but his horses could not work theirway through, so he unharnessed them, laid them at the top of the
cart, took tlie shafts in his own hands, and drew it over, and he didthis just as easily as if it had been laden with feathers. When hewas over, he said to the others, "There, you see, I have got overquicker than you," and drove on, and the others had to stay wherethey were. In the yard, however, he took a tree in his hand, showedit to the bailiff, and said, "Isn't that a fine bundle of wood?" Thensaid the bailiff to his wife, "The servant is a good one, if he doessleep long, he is stiU home before the others."
So he served the bailiff a year, and when that was over, and theother servants were getting their wages, he said it was time for himto have his too. The bailiff, however, was afraid of the blows whichhe was to receive, and earnestly entreated him to excuse him fromhaving them; for rather than that, he himself would be head-ser-vant, and the youth should be bailiff. "No," said he, "I will not be abailiff, I am head-servant, and will remain so, but I will administerthat which we agreed on." The bailiff was willing to give him what-soever he demanded, but it was of no use, the head-servant said noto everything.
Then the bailiff did not know what to do, and begged for a fort-night's delay, for he wanted to find some way to escape. The head-servant consented to this delay. The baihff summoned all his clerkstogether, and they were to think the matter over, and give him ad-vice. The clerks pondered for a long time, but at last they said thatno one was sure of his life with the head-servant, for he could kill aman as easily as a midge, and that the bailiff ought to make him getinto the well and clean it, and when he was down below, theywould roll up one of the mill-stones which was lying there, andthrow it on his head; and then he would never return to daylight.
The advice pleased the bailiff, and the head-servant was quitewilling to go down the well. When he was standing down below atthe bottom, they rolled down the largest miU-stone and thoughtthey had broken his skull, but he cried, "Chase away those hensfrom the well, they are scratching in the sand up there, and throw-ing 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 andsaid, "Just look what a beautiful necktie I have on," and behold itwas the miU-stone which he was wearing round his neck. The head-servant now wanted to take his reward, but the bailiff again beggedfor a fortnight's delay. The clerks met together and advised him tosend the head-servant to the haimted mill to grind corn by night,for from thence as yet no man had ever returned in the morning
The Young Giant 33
alive. The proposal pleased the bailiflF, he called the head-servantthat very evening, and ordered him to take eight bushels of com tothe mill, and grind it that night, for it w^as wanted.
So the head-servant went to the loft, and put two bushels in hisright pocket, and two in his left, and took foiu: in a wallet, half onhis back, and half on his breast, and thus laden went to the hauntedmill. The miller told him that he could grind there very well byday, but not by night, for the mill was haunted, and that up to thepresent time whosoever had gone into it at night had been found inthe morning, lying dead inside. He said, "1 wiU manage it, just yougo away to bed." Then he went into the mill, and poured out thecorn.
About eleven o'clock he went into the miller's room, and satdown on the bench. When he had sat there a while, a door sud-denly opened, and a large table came in, and on the table, wineand roasted meats placed themselves, and much good food besides,but everything came of itself, for no one was there to carry it. Afterthis the chairs pushed themselves up, but no people came, until allat once he beheld fingers, which handled knives and forks, and laidfood on the plates, but with this exception he saw nothing. As hewas hungry, and saw the food, he, too, placed himself at the table,ate with those who were eating, and enjoyed it.
When he had had enough, and the others also had quite emptiedtheir dishes, he distinctly heard all the candles being suddenlysnuffed out, and as it was now pitch dark, he felt something like abox on the ear. Then he said, 'If anything of that Idnd comesagain, I shall strike out in return." And when he had received a sec-ond box on the ear, he, too, struck out. And so it continued thewhole night, he took nothing wdthout returning it, but repaid every-thing v^ath interest, and did not lay about him in vain.
At daybreak, however, everything ceased. When the miller hadgot up, he wanted to look after him, and wondered if he werestill aUve. Then the youth said, "I have eaten my fill, have receivedsome boxes on the ear, but I have given some in return." The millerrejoiced, 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 mealon his back, went home, and told the bailiff that he had done whathe had been told to do, and would now have the reward agreed on.
When the bailiff heard that, he was seriously alarmed and quitebeside 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 awarethe head-servant had given him such a kick that he flew throughthe window out into the air, and so far away that no one ever sawhim again. Then said the head-servant to the bailiffs wife, "If hedoes not come back, thou must take the other blow." She cried,"No, no, I cannot bear it," and opened the other window, becausedrops of perspiration were running down her forehead. Then hegave her such a kick that she, too, flew out, and as she was lightershe went much higher than her husband. Her husband cried, "Docome to me," but she rephed, "Come thou to me, I cannot come tothee."
They hovered about there in the air, and could not get to eachother, and whether they are still hovering about or not, I do notknow, but the young giant took up his iron bar, and went on hisway.
There was a poor but good little girl who lived alone with hermother, and they no longer had anything to eat. So the child wentinto the forest, and there an aged woman met her who was awareof her sorrow, and presented her with a little pot, which when shesaid, "Cook, little pot, cook," would cook good, sweet porridge; andwhen she said, "Stop, little pot," it ceased to cook. The girl took thepot home to her mother, and now they were freed from their pov-erty 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 wassatisfied, and then she wanted the pot to stop cooking, but did notknow the word. So it went on cooking and the porridge rose overthe edge, and still it cooked on until the kitchen and whole housewere full, and then the next house, and then the whole street, justas if it wanted to satisfy the hunger of the whole world; and therewas the greatest distress, but no one knew how to stop it.
At last when only one single house remained, the child camehome and just said, "Stop, little pot," and it stopped and gave upcooking, and whosoever vidshed to return to the town had to eat hisway back.
There was once a shoemaker, who, through no fault of his own, be-came so poor that at last he had nothing left but just enoughleather to make one pair of shoes. He cut out the shoes at night, soas to set to work upon them next morning; and as he had a goodconscience, he laid himself quietly down in his bed, committedhimself to heaven, and fell asleep.
In the morning, after he had said his prayers, and was going toget to work, he fotmd the pair of shoes made and finished, andstanding on his table. He was very much astonished, and could nottell what to think, and he took the shoes in his hand to examinethem more closely; and they were so well made that every stitchwas in its right place, just as if they had come from the hand of amaster-workman.
Soon after, a purchaser entered, and as the shoes fitted him verywell, he gave more than the usual price for them, so that the shoe-maker had enough money to buy leather for two more pairs ofshoes. He cut them out at night, and intended to set to work thenext morning with fresh spirit; but that was not to be, for when hegot up they were already finished, and even a customer was notlacking, who gave him so much money that he was able to buyleather enough for four new pairs. Early next morning he found thefour pairs also finished, and so it always happened; whatever he cutout in the evening was worked up by the morning, so that he wassoon in the way of making a good living, and in the end becamevery well-to-do.
One night, not long before Christmas, when the shoemaker hadfinished cutting out, and before he went to bed, he said to his wife,"How would it be if we were to sit up tonight and see who it isthat does us this service?"
His wife agreed, and set a light to bum. Then they both hid in acomer of the room behind some coats that were hanging up, andthen they began to watch. As soon as it was midnight they sawcome in two neatly-formed naked little men, who seated themselves
36 Grimm's Complete Fairy Tales
before the shoemaker's table, and took up the work that was al-ready prepared, and began to stitch, to pierce, and to hammer socleverly and quickly with their Httle fingers that the shoemaker'seyes could scarcely follow them, so full of wonder was he. And theynever left oflE until everything was finished and was standing readyon the table, and then they jumped up and ran off.
The next morning the shoemaker's wife said to her husband,"Those little men have made us rich, and we ought to show our-selves grateful. With all their running about, and having nothing tocover them, they must be very cold. I'U tell you what; I will makelittle shirts, coats, waistcoats, and breeches for them, and knit eachof them a pair of stockings, and you shall make each of them a pairof shoes."
The husband consented willingly, and at night, when everythingwas finished, they laid the gifts together on the table, instead of thecut-out work, and placed themselves so that they could observehow the Httle men would behave. When midnight came, theyrushed in, ready to set to work, but when they found, instead of thepieces of prepared leather, the neat little garments put ready forthem, they stood a moment in surprise, and then they showed thegreatest delight. With the greatest swiftness they took up the prettygarments and sHpped them on, singing,
"What spruce and dandy boys are welNo longer cobblers we will beT
Then they hopped and danced about, jumping over the chairsand tables, and at last they danced out at the door.
From that time they were never seen again; but it always wentwell with the shoemaker as long as he Hved, and whatever he tookin hand prospered.
There was once a poor servant maid, who was very cleanly andindustrious; she swept down the house every day, and put thesweepings on a great heap by the door. One morning, before shebegan her work, she found a letter, and as she could not read, shelaid her broom in the comer, and took the letter to her master andmistress, to see what it was about; and it was an invitation from theelves, who wished the maid to come and stand godmother to one of
The Elves 37
their children. The maid did not know what to do; and as she wastold that no one ought to refuse the elves anything, she made upher mind to go.
So there came three little elves, who conducted her into the mid-dle of a high mountain, where the Httle people lived. Here every-thing was of a very small size, but more fine and elegant than canbe told. The mother of the child lay in a bed made of ebony, stud-ded with pearls; the counterpane was embroidered with gold, thecradle was of ivory, and the bathing-tub of gold. So the maid stoodgodmother, and was then for going home, but the elves begged herto stay at least three more days with them; and so she consented,and spent the time in mirth and jollity, and the elves seemed veryfond of her. At last, when she was ready to go away, they filled herpockets full of gold, and led her back again out of the mountain.
When she got back to the house, she was going to begin workingagain, and took her broom in her hand—it was still standing in thecomer where she had left it—and began to sweep. Then came upsome strangers and asked her who she was, and what she wasdoing. And she foimd that instead of three days, she had beenseven years with the elves in the mountain, and that during thattime her master and mistress had died.
The elves once took a child away from its mother, and left in itsplace a changeling with a big head and staring eyes, who did noth-ing but eat and drink. The mother in her trouble went to her neigh-bors and asked their advice. The neighbors told her to take thechangeling into the kitchen and put it near the hearth, and then tomake up the fire, and boil water in two egg-shells; that would makethe changeling laugh, and if he laughed, it would be all over withhim. So the woman did as her neighbors advised. And when she setthe egg-shells of water on the fire, the changeling said,
"Though old I beAs forest tree.Cooking in an egg-shell never did I see!"
and began to laugh. And directly there came in a crowd of elvesbringing in the right child; and they laid it near the hearth, andcarried the changeling away with them.
Fair Katrinelje and Pif-Paf-Poltrie
Good-day, Father Hollenthe." "Many thanks, Pif-paf-poltrie.'* "MayI be allowed to have your daughter?" "Oh, yes, if Mother Mal-cho (Milch-cow), Brother High-and-Mighty, Sister Kasetraut, andfair Katrinelje are willing, you can have her." "Where is MotherMalcho, then?" "She is in the cow-house, milking the cow."
"Good-day, Mother Malcho." "Many thanks, Pif-paf-poltrie.""May I be allowed to have your daughter?" "Oh, yes, if FatherHoUenthe, Brother High-and-Mighty, Sister Kasetraut, and fair Ka-trinelje are willing, you can have her." "Where is Brother High-and-Mighty, then?" "He is in the room chopping some wood."
"Good-day, Brother High-and-Mighty." "Many thanks, Pif-paf-poltrie." "May I be allowed to have your sister?" "Oh, yes, if Fa-ther Hollenthe, Mother Malcho, Sister Kasetraut, and fair Ka-trinelje are willing, you can have her." "Where is Sister Kasetraut,then?" "She is in the garden cutting cabbages."
"Good-day, Sister Kasetraut." "Many thanks, Pif-paf-poltrie.""May I be allowed to have your sister?" "Oh, yes, if Father Hol-lenthe, Mother Malcho, Brother High-and-Mighty, and fair Ka-trinelje are willing, you may have her." "Where is fair Katrinelje,then?" "She is in the room counting out her farthings."
"Good-day, fair Katrinelje." "Many thanks, Pif-paf-poltrie.""Wilt thou be my bride?" "Oh, yes, if Father Hollenthe, MotherMalcho, Brother High-and-Mighty, and Sister Kasetraut are willing,I am ready."
"Fair Katrinelje, how much dowry hast thou?" "Fourteen far-things in ready money, three and a half groschen owing to me, halfa pound of dried apples, a handful of fried bread, and a handful ofspices.
And many other things are mine.Have I not a dowry fine?
Pif-paf-poltrie, what is thy trade? Art thou a tailor?" "Somethingbetter." "A shoemaker?" "Something better." "A husbandman?""Something better." "A joiner?" "Something better." "A smith?""Something better." "A miller?" "Something better." "Perhaps abroom-maker?" "Yes, that's what I am, is it not a fine trade?"
The Old Beggar-Woman
There was once an old woman, but thou hast surely seen an oldwoman go a-begging before now? This woman begged likewise,and when she got anything she said, "May God reward you." Thebeggar-woman came to a door, and there by the fire a friendlyrogue of a boy was standing warming himself. The boy said kindlyto the poor old woman as she was standing shivering thus by thedoor, "Come, old mother, and warm yourself." She came in, butstood too near the fire, so that her old rags began to bum, and shewas not aware of it. The boy stood and saw that, but he ought tohave put the flames out. And if he could not find any water, thenshould he have wept all the water in his body out of his eyes, andthat would have supplied two fine streams with which to extinguishthem.
The Jew Among Thorns
There was once a rich man who had a servant who served himdiligently and honestly. Every morning the servant was the first outof bed, and the last to go to rest at night; and, whenever there wasa difficult job to be done, which nobody cared to undertake, he wasalways 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 hesaid to himself, "That is the cleverest way; for I shall save some-thing, and he will not go away, but stay quietly in my service." Theservant said nothing, but did his work the second year as he haddone it the first; and when at the end of this, likewise, he receivedno wages, he made himself happy, and still stayed on.
When the third year also was past, the master considered, put hishand in his pocket, but pulled nothing out. Then at last the servantsaid, "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, andlook about me a little more in the world."
''Yes, my good fellow," answered the old miser; "you have servedme industriously, and therefore you shall be cheerfully rewarded";and he put his hand into his pocket, but counted out only three far-things, saying, "There, you have a farthing for each year; that islarge and liberal pay, such as you would have received from fewmasters."
The honest servant, who understood little about money, put hisfortune into his pocket, and thought, "Ah! now that I have mypurse full, why need I trouble and plague myself any longer withhard work!" So on he went, up hill and down dale; and sang andjumped to his heart's content. Now it came to pass that as he wasgoing 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. "Howmuch? Three farthings sterling, all told."
"Look here," said the dwarf, *T am a poor needy man, give meyour 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 oldman, he gave him the three farthings, saying, "Take them in thename of Heaven, I shaU not be any the worse for it."
Then the little man said, "As I see you have a good heart I grantyou three wishes, one for each farthing, they shall all be fulfilled."
"Aha?" said the servant, "you are one of those who can workwonders! Well, then, if it is to be so, I wish, first, for a gun, whichshall hit everything that I aim at; secondly, for a fiddle, whichwhen I play on it, shall compel aU 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 intothe bush; and only think, there lay a fiddle and gun, all ready, justas if they had been ordered. These he gave to the servant, and thensaid to him, "Whatever you may ask at any time, no man in theworld shaU be able to deny you."
"Heart alive! What more can one desire?" said the servant tohimself, and went merrily onwards. Soon afterwards he met a Jewwith a long goafs-beard, who was standing listening to the song ofa bird whidi was sitting up at the top of a tree. "Good heavens," hewas exclaiming, "that such a small creature should have subh a
The Jew Among Thorns 41
fearfully loud voice! If it were but mine! If only some one wouldsprinkle some salt upon its tail!"
"If that is all," said the servant, "the bird shall soon be downhere"; and taking aim he pulled the trigger, and down fell the birdinto the thorn-bushes. "Go, you rogue," he said to the Jew, "andfetch the bird out for yourself!"
"Oh!" said the Jew, "leave out the rogue, my master, and I willdo it at once. I will get the bird out for myself, as you reaUy havehit it." Then he lay down on the ground, and began to crawl intothe thicket.
When he was fast among the thorns, the good servant's humor sotempted him that he took up his fiddle and began to play. In a mo-ment the Jew's legs began to move, and to jump into the air, andthe more the servant fiddled the better went the dance. But thethorns tore his shabby coat for him, combed his beard, and prickedand 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 havefleeced people often enough, now the thom-bushes shall do thesame to you"; and he began to play over again, so that the Jew hadto jmnp higher than ever, and scraps of his coat were left hangingon the thorns. "Oh, woe's me!" cried the Jew; "I will give the gen-tleman whatsoever he asks i£ only he leaves off fiddling—a pursefull of gold." "If you are so liberal," said the servant, "I will stopmy music; but this I must say to your credit, that you dance to it sowell that it is quite an art"; and having taken the purse he went hisway.
The Jew stood stiU and watched the servant quietly until he wasfar off and out of sight, and then he screamed out with all hismight, "You miserable musician, you beer-house fiddler! Wait till Icatch you alone, I will hunt you till the soles of your shoes fall off!You ragamuffin! Just put five farthings in yom* mouth, and then youmay be worth three halfpence!" and went on abusing him as fast ashe could speak.
As soon as he had refreshed himself a little in this way, and gothis breath again, he ran into the town to the justice. "My lordjudge," he said, "I have come to make a complaint; see how a ras-cal has robbed and ill-treated me on the public highway! A stoneon the ground might pity me; my clothes aU torn, my body prickedand scratched, my little aU gone with my pvurse—good ducats, each
piece better than the last; for God's sake let the man be thrown intoprisonl"
"Was it a soldier," said the judge, "who cut you thus with hissabre?" "Nothing of the sortl" said the Jew; "it was no sword thathe had, but a gun hanging at his back, and a fiddle at his neck; thewretch may easily be known."
So the judge sent his people out after the man, and they foundthe good servant, who had been going quite slowly along, and theyfound, too, the purse with the money upon him. As soon as he wastaken before the judge he said, "I did not touch the Jew, nor take hismoney; he gave it to me of his own free wiU, that I might leave oflEfiddling 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 abad defense, no Jew would do that." And because he had commit-ted robbery on the public highway, he sentenced the good servantto be hanged. As he was being led away the Jew again screamedafter him, "You vagabond! You dog of a fiddler! now you are goingto receive your well-earned reward!"
The servant walked quietly with the hangman up the ladder, butupon the last step he turned round and said to the judge, "Grantme 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 asa 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, "Whyshould I not let him have this short pleasure? It has been granted tohim, and he shall have it." However, he could not have refused onaccount of the gift which had been bestowed on the servant.
Then the Jew cried, "Oh! woe's me! tie me, tie me fast!" whilethe good servant took his fiddle from his neck, and made ready. Ashe gave the first scrape, they all began to quiver and shake, thejudge, his clerk, and the hangman and his men, and the cord fellout of the hand of the one who was going to tie the Jew fast. At thesecond scrape all raised their legs, and the hangman let go his holdof the good servant, and made himself ready to dance. At the thirdscrape they all leaped up and began to dance; the judge and theJew being the best at jumping. Soon all who had gathered in themarket-place out of curiosity were dancing with them; old andyoung, fat and lean, one with another. The dogs, likewise, whichhad run there got up on their hind legs and capered about; and the
longer he played, the higher sprang the dancers, so that theyknocked against each other's heads, and began to shriek terribly.
At length the judge cried, quite out of breath, "I will give youyour life if you will only stop fiddling." The good servant thereuponhad compassion, took his fiddle and hung it round his neck again,and stepped down the ladder. Then he went up to the Jew, whowas lying upon the ground panting for breath, and said, "You ras-cal, now confess, whence you got the money, or I wiU take myfiddle and begin to play again." "I stole it, I stole itl" cried he; "Tsutyou have honestly earned it." So the judge had the Jew taken to thegallows and hanged as a thief.
A KING had a daughter who was beautiful beyond measure, but soproud and overbearing that none of her suitors were good enoughfor her; she not only refused one after the other, but made a laugh-ing-stock of them.
Once the King appointed a great feast, and bade all the mar-riageable men to it from far and near. And tiiey were all put inrows, according to their rank and station: first came the Kings,then the Princes, the dukes, the earls, the barons, and lastly thenoblemen. The Princess was led in front of the rows, but she had amocking epithet for each. One was too fat, "What a tubl" said she;another too tall, "Long and lean is ill to be seen," said she; a thirdtoo short, 'Tat and short, not fit to court," said she. A fourth wastoo pale—"A regular death's-head"; a fifth too red-faced—"A game-cock," she called him. The sixth was not well-made enough—"Green wood ill driedl" cried she. So every one had somethingagainst him, and she made especially merry over a good King whowas very tall, and whose chin had grown a little peaked. "Onlylook," cried she, laughing, "he has a chin like a thrush's beak."
And from that time they called him King Thrushbeard. But theold King, when he saw that his daughter mocked every one, andscorned all the assembled suitors, swore in his anger that sheshould have the first beggar that came to the door for a husband.
A few days afterwards came a traveling ballad-singer, and sangunder the window in hopes of a small alms. When the King heard
of it, he said that he must come in. And so the ballad-singer enteredin his dirty tattered garments, and sang before the King and hisdaughter; when he had done, he asked for a small reward. But theKing said, "Your song has so well pleased me, that I will give youmy daughter to wife."
The Princess was horrified; but the King said, "I took an oath togive you to the first beggar that came, and so it must be done."
There was no remedy. The priest was fetched, and she had to bemarried to the ballad-finger out of hand. When all was done, theKing said, "Now, as you are a beggar-wife, you can stay no longerin my castle, so off with you and your husband."
The beggar-man led her away, and she was obliged to go forthwith him on foot. On the way they came to a great wood, and sheasked,
"Oh, whose is this forest, so thick and so fineF*He answered,
"It is King Thrushheards, and might have been thine"
And she cried,
"Oh, I was a silly young thing, Tm afeared.Would I had taken that good King Thrushbeard!"
Then they passed through a meadow, and she asked,"Oh, whose is this meadow, so green and so fine?"
He answered,"It is King Thrushheards, and might have been thine."
And she cried,
"I was a silly young thing, Tm af eared.Would I had taken that good King ThrushbeardF'
Then they passed through a great town, and she asked,
"Whose is this city, so great and so fine?"He answered,
"Oh, it is King Thrushbeard's, and might have been thine."
And she cried,
"I was a silly young thing, Tm af eared.Would I had taken that good King Thrushbeard!"
King Thrushbeard 45
Then said the beggar-man, "It does not please me to hear you al-ways wishing for another husband; am I not good enough for you?"At last they came to a very smaU house, and she said,
"Oh dear me! what poor little house do I see?And whose, I would know, may the wretched hole beF'
The man answered, 'That is my house and yours, where we mustlive together."
She had to stoop before she could go in at the door.
"Where are the servants?" asked the King's daughter.
"What servants?" answered the beggar-man, "what you want tohave done you must do yoiurself. Make a fire quickly, and put onwater, and cook me some food; I am very tired."
But the King's daughter understood nothing about fire-maldngand cooking, and the beggar-man had to lend a hand himself inorder to manage it at all. And when they had eaten their poor fare,they went to bed; but the man called up his wiie very early in themorning, in order to clean the house.
For a few days they lived in this indifferent manner, until theycame to the end of their store. "Wife," said the man, "this will notdo, stopping here and earning nothing; you must make baskets."
So he went out and cut wiUows, and brought them home; andshe began to weave them, but the hard twigs wounded her tenderhands. "I see this wiU not do," said the man, "you had better tryspinning."
So she sat her down and tried to spin, but the harsh thread cuther soft fingers, so that the blood flowed. "Look nowl" said theman, "you are no good at any sort of work; I made a bad bargainwhen I took you. I must see what I can do to make a trade of potsand earthen vessels; you can sit in the market and offer them forsale."
"Oh dearl" thought she, "suppose while I am selling in the mar-ket people belonging to my father's kingdom should see me, howthey would mock at me!" But there was no help for it; she had tosubmit, or else die of hunger.
The first day all went well; the people bought her wares eagerly,because she was so beautiful, and gave her whatever she asked,and some of them gave her the money and left the pots after allbehind them. And they lived on these earnings as long as theylasted; and then the man bought a nimiber of new pots. So sheseated herself in a comer of the market, and stood the wares beforeher for sale. All at once a drunken horse-soldier came plimging by.
and rode straight into the midst of her pots, breaking them into athousand pieces. She could do nothing for weeping. "Oh dear,what will become of me," cried she; "what will my husband say?"and she hastened home and told him her misfortune.
"Who ever heard of such a thing as sitting in the comer of themarket with earthenware potsl" said the man; "now leave oflF cry-ing; I see you are not fit for any regular work. I have been asking atyour father's castle if they want a kitchen-maid, and they say theydon't mind taking you; at any rate you will get your victuals free."
And the ICing's daughter became a kitchen-maid, to be at thecook's beck and call, and to do the hardest work. In each of herpockets she fastened a little pot, and brought home in them what-ever was left, and upon that she and her husband were fed. It hap-pened one day, when the wedding of the eldest Prince was cele-brated, the poor woman went upstairs, and stood by the parlor doorto see what was going on. And when the place was Ughted up, andthe company arrived, each person handsomer than the one before,and all was brilliancy and splendor, she thought on her own fatewdth a sad heart, and bewailed her former pride and haughtinesswhich had brought her so low, and plunged her in so great poverty.And as the rich and delicate dishes smeUing so good were carriedto and fro every now and then, the servants would throw her a fewfragments, which she put in her pockets, intending to take home.And then the Prince himself passed in, clothed in siUc and velvet,with a gold chain round his neck. And when he saw the beautifulwoman standing in the doorway, he seized her hand and urged herto dance with him, but she refused, all trembhng, for she saw it wasKing Thrushbeard, who had come to court her, whom she hadturned away wdth mocking. It was of no use her resisting, he drewher into the room; and all at once the band to which her pocketswere fastened broke, and the pots fell out, and the soup ran about,and the fragments were scattered all round. And when the peoplesaw that, there was great laughter and mocking, and she felt soashamed, that she wished herself a thousand fathoms underground.
She rushed to the door to fly from the place, when a man caughther just on the steps, and when she looked at him, it was KingThrushbeard again. He said to her in a Idnd tone, "Do not beafraid, I and the beggar-man v^dth whom you lived in the wretchedHttle hut are one. For love of you I disguised myself, and it was Iwho broke your pots in the guise of a horse-soldier. I did all that tobring down your proud heart, and to punish your haughtiness,which caused you to mock at me."
Clever Gretel 47
Then she wept bitterly, and said, "I have done great wrong, andam not worthy to be your wife."
But he said, "Take courage, the evil days are gone over; now letus keep our wedding-day."
Then came the ladies-in-waiting and put on her splendid cloth-ing; and her father came, and the whole coiut, and wished her joyon her marriage with King Thrushbeard; and then the merry-mak-ing began in good earnest. I cannot help wishing that you and Icould have been there too.
There was once a cook called Gretel, who wore shoes with redheels, and when she went out in them she gave herself great airs,and thought herself very fine indeed. When she came home again,she would take a drink of wine to refresh herself, and as that gaveher an appetite, she would take some of the best of whatever shewas cooking, until she had had enough—"for," said she, "a cookmust know how things taste."
It happened that one day her master came to her and said, "Gre-tel, I expect a guest this evening; you must make ready a pair offowls." "I will see to it," answered Gretel.
So she killed the fowls, cleaned them, and plucked them, and putthem on the spit, and then, as evening drew near, placed them be-fore the fire to roast. And they began to be brown, and were nearlydone, but the guest had not come.
"li he does not make haste," cried Gretel to her master, "I musttake them away from the fire; it's a pity and a shame not to eatthem now, just when they are done to a turn." And the master saidhe would run himself and fetch the guest. As soon as he had turnedhis back, Gretel took the fowls from before the fire.
"Standing so long before the fire," said she, "makes one hot andthirsty—and who knows when they will cornel In the meanwhile Iwill go to the cellar and have a drink." So down she ran, took up amug, and saying, "Here's to mel" took a good draught. "One gooddrink deserves another," she said "and it should not be cut short";so she took another hearty draught. Then she went and put thefowls down to the fire again, and, basting them with butter, she
turned the spit briskly round. And now they began to smell so goodthat Gretel saying, "I must find out whether they really are allright," hcked her fingers, and then cried, "Well, I never 1 the fowlsare good; it's a sin and a shame that no one is here to eat them I"
So she ran to the window to see if her master and his guest werecoming, but as she could see nobody she went back to her fowls."Why, one of the wings is bumingl" she cried presently, "I hadbetter eat it and get it out of the way." So she cut it off and ate itup, and it tasted good, and then she thought, "I had better cut offthe other too, in case the master should miss anything." And whenboth wings had been disposed of she went and looked for themaster, but still he did not come.
"Who knows," said she, "whether they are coming or not? theymay have put up at an inn." And after a pause she said again,"Come, I may as well make myself happy, and first I will makesure of a good drink and then of a good meal, and when all is doneI shall be easy; the gifts of the gods are not to be despised." So firstshe ran down into the cellar and had a famous drink, and ate upone of the fowls with great relish. And when that was done, andstill the master did not come, Gretel eyed the other fowl, saying,"What one is the other must be, the two belong to each other, it isonly fair that they should be both treated alike; perhaps when Ihave had another drink, I shall be able to manage it." So she tookanother hearty drink, and then the second fowl went the way of thefirst.
Just as she was in the middle of it the master came back. "Makehaste, Gretel," cried he, "the guest is coming directlyl" "Very well,master," she answered, "it vdll soon be ready." The master went tosee that the table was properly laid, and, taking the great carvingknife with which he meant to carve the fowls, he sharpened it uponthe step. Presently came the guest, knocking very genteeUy andsoftly at the front door. Gretel ran and looked to see who it was,and when she caught sight of the guest she put her finger on her lipsaying, "Hushl make the best haste you can out of this, for if mymaster catches you, it wiU be bad for you; he asked you to come tosupper, but he really means to cut off your ears! Just listen how heis sharpening his knifel"
The guest, hearing the noise of the sharpening, made off as fastas he could go. And Gretel ran screaming to her master. "A prettyguest you have asked to the house!" cried she. "How so, Gretel?what do you mean?" asked he. "What indeedl" said she; "why, he
Pitchers Bird 49
has gone and run away with my pair of fowk that I had just dishedup.
"That's pretty sort of conduct!" said the master, feeling verysorry about the fowls; 'Tie might at least have left me one, that Imight have had something to eat." And he called out to him to stop,but the guest made as if he did not hear him; then he ran after him,the knife still in his hand, crying out, "Only onel only onel" mean-ing that the guest should let him have one of the fowls and not takeboth; but the guest thought he meant to have only one of his ears,and he ran so much the faster that he might get home with both ofthem safe.
Theee was once a wizard who used to take the form of a poor man.He went to houses and begged, and caught pretty girls. No oneknew whither he carried them, for they were never seen more. Oneday he appeared before the door of a man who had three prettydaughters. He looked like a poor weak beggar, and carried a basketon his back, as if he meant to collect charitable gifts in it. Hebegged for a httle food, and when the eldest daughter came outand was just reaching him a piece of bread, he did but touch her,and she was forced to jump into his basket. Thereupon he hurriedaway with long strides, and carried her away into a dark forest tohis house, which stood in the midst of it.
Everything in the house was magnificent; he gave her whatsoevershe could possibly desire, and said, "My darHng, thou wilt certainlybe 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, andleave thee alone for a short time; there are the keys of the house;thou mayst go everywhere and look at everything except into oneroom, which this Uttle key here opens, and there I forbid thee to goon pain of death." He Hkewise gave her an egg and said, "Preservethe 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 ev-erything. When he was gone, she went all round the house from thebottom to the top, and examined everything. The rooms shone with
silver and gold, and she thought she had never seen such greatsplendor.
At length she came to the forbidden door; she wished to pass itby, but curiosity let her have no rest. She examined the key, itlooked just Hke any other; she put it in the keyhole and tiumed it alittle, and the door sprang open. But what did she see when shewent in? A great bloody basin stood in the middle of the room, andtherein lay human beings, dead and hewn to pieces, and hard bywas a block of wood, and a gleaming axe lay upon it. She was soterribly alarmed that the egg which she held in her hand fell intothe basin. She got it out and washed the blood off, but in vain, it ap-peared again in a moment. She washed and scrubbed, but shecould not get it out.
It was not long before the man came back from his journey, andthe first things which he asked for were the key and the egg. Shegave them to him, but she trembled as she did so, and he saw atonce by the red spots that she had been in the bloody chamber."Since thou hast gone into the room against my wiU," said he,"thou shalt go back into it against thine own. Thy life is ended." Hethrew her down, dragged her thither by her hair, cut her head offon the block, and hewed her in pieces so that her blood ran on theground. Then he threw her into the basin with the rest.
"Now I will fetch myself the second," said the wizard, and againhe went to the house in the shape of a poor man, and begged. Thenthe second daughter brought him a piece of bread; he caught herlike the first, by simply touching her, and carried her away. She didnot fare better than her sister. She allowed herself to be led awayby 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 andcrafty. When he had given her the keys and the egg, and had lefther, she first put the egg away with great care, and then she ex-amined the house, and at last went into the forbidden room. Alas,what did she beholdl Both her sisters lay there in the basLn, cruellymurdered, and cut in pieces. She began to gather their limbs to-gether and put them in order, head, body, arms and legs. And whennothing fiuther was lacking, the limbs began to move and unitethemselves together, and both the maidens opened their eyes andwere once more aUve. Then they rejoiced and kissed and caressedeach other.
On his arrival, the man at once demanded the keys and the egg,
Fitchet^s Bird 51
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 nolonger any power over her, and was forced to do whatsoever shedesired. "Oh, very well," said she, "thou shalt first take a basketfulof 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 Mttlechamber and said, "The moment has come when I can save you.The wretch shall himself carry you home again, but as soon as youare at home send help to me." She put both of them in a basket andcovered them quite over with gold, so that nothing of them was tobe seen, then she called in the wizard and said to him, "Now carrythe basket away, but I shall look through my little window andwatch 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 streamedfrom his face. Then he sat down and wanted to rest awhile, butimmediately one of the girls in the basket cried, "I am lookingthrough my little window, and I see that thou art resting. Wiltthou go on at once?" He thought his bride 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 httle window,and I see that thou art resting. Wilt thou go on directly?"
Whenever he stood still, she cried this, and then he was forced togo onwards, until at last, groaning and out of breath, he took thebasket with the gold and the two maidens into their parents' house.At home, however, the bride prepared the marriage-feast, and sentinvitations to the friends of the wizard. Then she took a skull withgrinning teeth, put some ornaments on it and a wreath of flowers,carried it upstairs to the garret-window, and let it look out fromthence. When all was ready, she got into a barrel of honey, andthen cut the feather-bed open and rolled herself in it, until shelooked like a wondrous bird, and no one could recognize her. Thenshe went out of the house, and on her way she met some of thewedding-guests, who asked,
"O, Fitcher's bird, how comst 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, Fitche/s bird, how com'sf thou hereF'
"I come from Fitche/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 uAndow she's peeping, I ween^
The bridegroom looked up, saw the decked-out skuU, thought itwas his bride, and nodded to her, greeting her kindly. But when heand his guests had all gone into the house, the brothers and kins-men of the bride, who had been sent to rescue her, arrived. Theylocked all the doors of the house, that no one might escape, set fireto it, and the wizard and all his crew were burned.
The Robber Bridegroom
Thesie was once a miller who had a beautiful daughter, and whenshe was grown up he became anxious that she should be weU mar-ried and taken care of; so he thought, "If a decent sort of mancomes and asks her in marriage, I wiU give her to him."
Soon after a suitor came forward who seemed very well-to-do,and as the miller knew nothing to his disadvantage, he promisedhim his daughter. But the girl did not seem to love him as a brideshould love her bridegroom; she had no confidence in him; as oftenas she saw him or thought about him, she felt a chiU at her heart.
One day he said to her, "You are to be my bride, and yet youhave never been to see me." The girl answered, "\ do not knowwhere your house is." Then he said, "My house is a long way in thewood."
She began to make excuses, and said she could not find the wayto it; but the bridegroom said, "You must come and pay me a visitnext Sunday; I have already invited company, and I will strewashes on the path through the wood, so that you will be srnre to findit."
When Sunday came, and the girl set out on her way, she felt veryuneasy without knowing exactly why; and she filled both pockets
The Robber Bridegroom 53
full of peas and lentils. There were ashes strewn on the paththrough the wood, but nevertheless, at each step she cast to theright and left a few peas on the ground. So she went on the wholeday until she came to the middle of the wood, where it was darkest,and there stood a lonely house, not pleasant in her eyes, for it wasdismal and unhomeUke. She walked in, but there was no one there,and the greatest stillness reigned. Suddenly she heard a voice cry,
"Turn back, turn back, thou pretty bride.Within this house thou must not bide.For here do evil things betide."
The girl glanced round, and perceived that the voice came froma bird who was hanging in a cage by the wall. And again it cried,
"Turn back, turn back, thou pretty bride.Within this house thou must not bide.For here do evil things betide"
Then the pretty bride went on from one room into anotherthrough the whole house, but it was quite empty, and no soul to befound in it. At last she reached the cellar, and there sat a very oldwoman nodding her head.
"Can you teU me," said the bride, "if my bridegroom lives here?"
"Oh, poor child," answered the old woman, "do you know whathas happened to you? You are in a place of cutthroats. You thoughtyou were a bride, and soon to be married, but death will be yourspouse. Look here, I have a great kettle of water to set on, andwhen once they have you in their power they will cut you in pieceswithout mercy, cook you, and eat you, for they are carmibals. Un-less I have pity on you, and save you, all is over with youl"
Then the old woman hid her behind a great cask, where shecould not be seen. "Be as still as a mouse," said she; "do not moveor go away, or else you are lost. At night, when the robbers areasleep, we will escape. I have been waiting a long time for an op-portunity."
No sooner was it settled than the wicked gang entered the house.They brought another young woman with them, dragging heralong, and they were drunk, and would not listen to her cries andgroans. They gave her wine to drink, three glasses full, one of whitewine, one of red, and one of yellow, and then they cut her inpieces; the poor bride all the while shaking and trembling whenshe saw what a fate the robbers had intended for her.
One of them noticed on the little finger of their victim a golden
ring, and as he could not draw it oflE easily, he took an axe andchopped it oflE, but the finger jumped away, and feU behind thecask on the bride's lap. The robber took up a Hght to look for it, buthe could not find it. Then said one of the others, "Have you lookedbehind the great cask?" But the old woman cried, "Come to supper,and leave off looking till tomorrow; the finger cannot run away."
Then the robbers said the old woman was right, and they left offsearching, and sat down to eat, and the old woman dropped somesleeping stuff into their wine, so that before long they stretchedthemselves on the cellar floor, sleeping and snoring.
When the bride heard that, she came from behind the cask, andhad to make her way among the sleepers lying aU about on theground, and she felt very much afraid lest she might awaken any ofthem. But by good luck she passed through, and the old womanwith her, and they opened the door, and they made haste to leavethat house of murderers. The wind had carried away the ashes fromthe path, but the peas and lentils had budded and sprung up, andthe moonshine upon them showed the way. And they went onthrough the night, till in the morning they reached the mill. Thenthe girl related to her father aU that had happened to her.
When the wedding-day came, the friends and neighbors as-sembled, the miller having invited them, and the bridegroom alsoappeared. When they were all seated at table, each one had to teUa story. But the bride sat stiU, and said nothing, tiU at last thebridegroom said to her, "Now, sweetheart, do you know no story?TeU us something."
She answered, '1 wiU teU you my dream. I was going alonethrough a wood, and I came at last to a house in which there wasno living soul, but by the waU was a bird in a cage, who cried,
'Turn back, turn back, thou pretty bride.Within this house thou must not bide.For here do evil things betide'
"And then again it said it. Sweetheart, the dream is not ended.Then I went through aU the rooms, and they were all empty, and itwas so lonely and wretched. At last I went down into the ceUar,and there sat an old old woman, nodding her head. I asked her ifmy bridegroom lived in that house, and she answered, 'Ah, poorchild, you have come into a place of cutthroats; your bridegroomdoes live here, but he wiU kiU you and cut you in pieces, and thencook and eat you.' Sweetheart, the dream is not ended. But the oldwoman hid me behind a great cask, and no sooner had she done so
than the robbers came home, dragging with them a young woman,and they gave her to drink wine thrice, white, red, and yellow.Sweetheart, the dream is not yet ended. And then they killed her,and cut her in pieces. Sweetheart, my dream is not yet ended. Andone of the robbers saw a gold ring on the jBnger of the youngwoman, and as it was diflBcult to get oflF, he took an axe andchopped ofiE the finger, which jumped upwards, and then fell be-hind the great cask on my lap. And here is the finger with the ringl"
At these words she drew it forth, and showed it to the company.
The robber, who during the story had grown deadly white,sprang up, and would have escaped, but the folks held him fast,and delivered him up to justice. And he and his whole gang were,for their evil deeds, condemned and executed.
Once upon a time lived a peasant and his wife, and the parson ofthe village had a fancy for the wife, and had wished for a longwhile to spend a whole day happily with her, and the peasantwoman, too, was quite willing. One day, therefore, he said to thewoman, "Listen, my dear friend, I have now thought of a way bywhich we can for once spend a whole day happily together. I'll tellyou what: on Wednesday, you must take to your bed, and tell yourhusband you are ill, and if you only complain and act being illproperly, and go on doing it imtil Simday when I have to preach, Iwill 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 sister,brother or whosoever else it may be, and makes a pilgrimage to theGockerli hill in Italy, where you can get a peck of laurel-leaves fora kreuzer, the sick child, the sick husband, the sick wiie, the sick fa-ther, or sick mother, the sick sister, or whosoever else it may be,will be restored to health immediately."
"1 will manage it," said the woman directly. Now therefore, onthe Wednesday, the peasant woman took to her bed, and com-plained and lamented as agreed on, and her husband did every-thing for her that he could think of, but nothing did her any good,and when Sunday came the woman said, "l feel as iU as if I were
going to die at once, but there is one thing I should like to do be-fore my end—I should like to hear the parson's sermon that he isgoing to preach today." On that the peasant said, "Ah, my child, donot do it—you might make yourself worse if you were to get up.Look, I will go to the sermon, and will attend to it very carefully,and will tell you everything the parson says."
"Well," said the woman, "go, then, and pay great attention, andrepeat to me all that you hear." So the peasant went to the sermon,and the parson began to preach and said, if any one had at home asick child, a sick husband, a sick wife, a sick father, a sick mother, asick sister, brother or any one else, and would make a pilgrimage tothe Gockerli hill in Italy, where a peck of laiuel-leaves costs akreuzer, the sick child, sick husband, sick wife, sick father, sickmother, sick sister, brother, or whosoever else it might be, would berestored to health instantly; and whosoever wished to undertakethe journey was to go to him after the service was over, and hewould give him the sack for the laurel-leaves and the kreuzer.
No one was more rejoiced than the peasant, and after the servicewas over, he went at once to the parson, who gave him the bag forthe laurel-leaves and the kreuzer. After that he went home, andeven at the house door he cried, "Hurrah! dear wife, it is now al-most the same thing as if you were well! The parson has preachedtoday that whosoever had at home a sick child, a sick husband, asick wife, a sick father, a sick mother, a sick sister, brother or who-ever it might be, and would make a pilgrimage to the GockerH hiUin Italy, where a peck of laurel-leaves costs a kreuzer, the sickchild, sick husband, sick wife, sick father, sick mother, sick sister,brother, or whosoever else it was, would be cured immediately; andnow I have already got the bag and the kreuzer from the parson,and will at once begin my journey so that you may get well thefaster," and thereupon he went away. He was, however, hardlygone before the women got up, and the parson was there directly.
But now we will leave these two for a while, and follow the peas-ant, who walked on quickly without stopping, in order to get thesooner to the Gockerli hiU; and on his way he met his gossip. Hisgossip 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 iU, andI have been today to hear the parson's sermon, and he preachedthat if any one had in his house a sick child, a sick husband, a sick
Old Hildebrand 57
wife, a sick father, a sick mother, a sick sister, brother or any oneelse, and made a pilgrimage to the Gockerli hill in Italy, where apeck of laurel-leaves costs a kreuzer; the sick child, the sick hus-band, the sick wife, the sick father, the sick mother, the sick sister,brother, or whosoever else it was, would be cured immediately; andso I have got the bag for the laurel-leaves and the kreuzer from theparson, and now I am beginning my pilgrimage." "But listen, gos-sip," said the egg-merchant to the peasant, "are you, then, stupidenough to believe such a thing as that? Don't you know what itmeans? The parson wants to spend a whole day alone with yourwife in peace, so he has given you this job to do to get you out ofthe way."
"My word!" said the peasant. "How I'd like to know if that'struel"
"Come, then," said the gossip, "I'll tell you what to do. Get intomy egg-basket and I will carry you home, and then you will see foryourself." So that was settled, and the gossip put the peasant intohis egg-basket, and carried him home.
When they got to the house, hurrahl but all was going merrilythere I The woman had already had nearly everything killed thatwas in the farmyard, and had made pancakes; and the parson wasthere, and had brought his fiddle with him. The gossip knocked atthe door, and the woman asked who was there. "It is I, gossip,"said the egg-merchant, "give me shelter this night; I have not soldmy 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 isdark already."
'Indeed, my friend," said the woman, "you come at a very incon-venient time for me, but as you are here it can't be helped; come in,and take a seat there on the bench by the stove." Then she placedthe gossip and the basket which he carried on his back on thebench by the stove. The parson, however, and the woman were asmerry as possible. At length the parson said, "Listen, my dearfriend, you can sing beautifully; sing something to me." "Oh," saidthe woman, "1 cannot sing now, in my young days indeed I couldsing well enough, but that's all over now." "Come," said the parsononce more, "do sing some little song."
Then the woman sang,
"I've sent my husband atoay from meTo the Gockerli hill in Italy.'*
Thereupon the parson sang,
"I wish 'twas a year before he came back,Td never ask him for the laurel-leaf sack.
Then the gossip, who was in the background, began to sing (butI ought to tell you the peasant was called Hildebrand), so the gos-sip sang,
"What art thou doing, my Hildebrand dear.There on the bench by the stove so near?
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.
And he got out of the basket and drove the parson out of thehouse.
The Singing Bone
A CERTAIN COUNTRY was greatly troubled by a wild boar that at-tacked workers in the fields, killed men, and tore them to pieceswith its terrible tusks. The King of the country had offered rich re-wards to any one who would rid the land of this terror. But thebeast was so huge and ferocious that no man could even be per-suaded to enter the forest where the animal made its home.
At last the King made a proclamation that he would give his onlydaughter in marriage to any man who would bring the wild boar tohim, dead or alive.
There lived two brothers in that country, the sons of a poor man,who gave notice of their readiness to enter on this perilous under-taking. The elder, who was clever and crafty, was influenced bypride; the younger, who was innocent and simple, offered himselffrom kindness of heart.
Thereupon the King advised that, as the best and safest waywould be to take opposite directions in the wood, the elder was togo in the evening and the younger in the morning.
The Singing Bone 59
The younger had not gone far when a little fairy stepped up tohim. He held in his hand a black spear, and said, "I will give youthis spear because your heart is innocent and good. With this youcan go out and discover the v^ld boar, and he shall not be able toharm you."
He thanked the httle man, took the spear, placed it on his shoul-der, and without delay went further into the forest. It was not longbefore he espied the animal coming toward him, and fiercely mak-ing ready to spring. But the youth stood still and held the spearfirmly in front of him. In wild rage the fierce beast ran violently to-ward him, and was met by the spear, on the point of which hethrew himself, and, as it pierced his heart, he fell dead.
Then the youngster took the dead monster on his shoulder andwent to find his brother. As he approached the other side of thewood, where stood a large hall, he heard music, and found a num-ber of people dancing, drinking wine, and making merry. His elderbrother was among them, for he thought the wdld boar would notrun far away, and he wished to get up his courage for the eveningby cheerful company and wdne.
When he caught sight of his younger brother coming out of theforest laden wdth his booty, the most restless jealousy and mahcerose in his heart. But he disguised his bitter feehngs and spokekindly to his brother, and said, "Come in and stay v^dth us, dearbrother, and rest awhile, and get up your strength by a cup ofwdne."
So the youth, not suspecting anything wrong, carried the deadboar into his brother's house, and told him of the little man he hadmet in the wood, who had given him the spear, and how he hadkilled the wild animal.
The elder brother persuaded him to stay and rest till the evening,and then they went out together in the twilight and walked by theriver till it became quite dark. A Httle bridge lay across the river,over which they had to pass, and the elder brother let the youngone go before him. When they arrived at the middle of the streamthe wicked man gave his younger brother a blow from behind, andhe fell down dead instantly.
But fearing he might not be quite dead, he threw the body overthe bridge into the river, and through the clear waters saw it sinkinto the sand. After this wicked deed he ran home quickly, took thedead wild boar on his shoulders, and carried it to the King, withthe pretense that he had killed the animal, and that therefore he
could claim the Princess as his wife, according to the King'spromise.
But these dark deeds are not often concealed, for something hap-pens to bring them to light. Not many years after, a herdsman,passing over the bridge with his flock, saw beneath him in the sanda little bone as white as snow, and thought that it would make avery nice mouthpiece for his horn.
As soon as the flock passed over the bridge, he waded into themiddle of the stream—for the water was very shallow—took up thebone, and carried it home to make a mouthpiece for his horn.
But the first time he blew the horn after the bone was in it, itfiUed the herdsman with wonder and amazement; for it began tosing of itself, and these were the words it sang:
"Ah! dear shepherd, you are blowing your hornWith one of my bones, which night and mornLie still unburied, beneath the uMveWhere I was thrown in a sandy grave.I killed the wild boar, and my brother slew me.And gained the Princess by pretending 'twas he."
**What a wonderful horn," said the shepherd, "that can sing of it-self! I must certainly take it to my lord, the King."
As soon as the horn was brought before the King and blown bythe shepherd, it at once began to siag the same song and the samewords.
The King was at first surprised, but his suspicion being aroused,he ordered that the sand under the bridge should be examined im-mediately, and then the entire skeleton of the murdered man wasdiscovered, and the whole wicked deed came to Hght.
The wicked brother could not deny the deed. He was thereforeordered to be tied in a sack and drowned, while the remains of hismurdered brother were carefully carried to the churchyard, andlaid to rest in a beautiful grave.
There was once a King who had a son who asked in marriage thedaughter of a mighty King; she was called Maid Maleen, and was
very beautiful. As her father wished to give her to another, thePrince was rejected; but as they both loved each other with all theirhearts, they would not give each other up, and Maid Maleen said toher father, "I can and v^oll take no other for my husband."
Then the King flew into a passion, and ordered a dark tower tobe built, into which no ray of sunlight or moonlight should enter.When it was finished, he said, "Therein shalt thou be imprisonedfor seven years, and then I will come and see if thy perverse spiritis broken." Meat and drink for the seven years were carried into thetower, and then she and her waiting-woman were led into it andwalled up, and thus cut off from the sky and from the earth. Therethey sat in the darkness, and knew not when day or night began.The King's son often went round and round the tower, and calledtheir names, but no sound from without pierced through the thickwalls. What else could they do but lament and complain?
Meanwhile the time passed, and by the diminution of the foodand drink they knew that the seven years were coming to an end.They thought the moment of their dehverance was come; but nostroke of the hammer was heard, no stone fell out of the wall, and itseemed to Maid Maleen that her father had forgotten her. As theyonly had food for a short time longer, and saw a miserable deathawaiting them, Maid Maleen said, "We must try our last chance,and see if we can break through the wall." She took the bread-knife, and picked and bored at the mortar of a stone, and when shewas tired, the waiting-maid took her turn. With great labor theysucceeded in getting out one stone, and then a second, and third,and when three days were over the first ray of light fell on theirdarkness, and at last the opening was so large that they could lookout.
The sky was blue, and a fresh breeze played on their faces; buthow melancholy everything looked all aroundl Her father's castlelay in ruins, the town and the villages were, so far as could be seen,destroyed by fire, the fields far and wide laid to waste, and nohuman being was visible. When the opening in the wall was largeenough for them to slip through, the waiting-maid sprang downfirst, and then Maid Maleen followed. But where were they to go?The enemy had ravaged the whole kingdom, driven away the King,and slain all the inhabitants. They wandered forth to seek anothercountry, but nowhere did they find a shelter, or a human being togive them a mouthful of bread, and their need was so great thatthey were forced to appease their hunger vidth nettles. When, after
long journeying, they came into another country, they tried to getwork everywhere; but wherever they knocked they were turnedaway, and no one would have pity on them. At last they arrived ina large city and went to the royal palace. There also they were or-dered to go away, but at last the cook said that they might stay inthe kitchen and be scullions.
The son of the King in whose kingdom they were, was, however,the very man who had been betrothed to Maid Maleen. His fatherhad chosen another bride for him, whose face was as ugly as herheart was wicked. The wedding was fixed, and the maiden had al-ready arrived; because of her great ugliness, however, she shut her-self in her room, and allowed no one to see her, and Maid Maleenhad to take her her meals from the kitchen. When the day came forthe bride and the bridegroom to go to church, she was ashamed ofher ugHness, and afraid that if she showed herself in the streets, shewould be mocked and laughed at by the people.
Then said she to Maid Maleen, "A great piece of luck has befal-len thee. I have sprained my foot, and caimot well walk throughthe streets; thou shalt put on my wedding-clothes and take myplace; a greater honor than that thou canst not have!" Maid Ma-leen, however, refused it, and said, "I wish for no honor which isnot suitable for me." It was in vain, too, that the bride offered hergold. At last she said angrily, "If thou dost not obey me, it shallcost thee thy life. I have but to speak the word, and thy head willlie at thy feet." Then she was forced to obey, and put on thebride's magnificent clothes and all her jewels. When she enteredthe royal haU, every one was amazed at her great beauty, and theKing said to his son, "This is the bride whom I have chosen forthee, and whom thou must lead to church." The bridegroom wasastonished, and thought, "She is Hke my Maid Maleen, and Ishould believe that it was she herself, but she has long been shutup in the tower, or dead." He took her by the hand and led her tochurch. On the way was a nettle-plant, and she said,
"Oh, nettle-plant.Little nettle-plant.What dost thou here alone?I have known the timeWhen I ate thee unboiled,When I ate thee unroasted."
"What art thou saying?" asked the King's son. "Nothing," shereplied, "I was only thinking of Maid Maleen." He was surprised
Maid Maleen 63
that she knew about her, but kept silence. When they came to thefoot-plank into the churchyard, she said,
"Foot-bridge, do not break,I am not the true bride."
*What art thou saying there?" asked the King's son. 'Toothing,"she replied, "1 was only thinking of Maid Maleen." 'TDost thouknow Maid Maleen?" "No," she answered, "how should I know her;I have only heard of her." When they came to the church-door, shesaid once more,
"Church-door, break not,I am not the true bride."
"What art thou saying there?" asked he. "Ah," she answered, "Iwas only thinking of Maid Maleen." Then he took out a preciouschain, put it round her neck, and fastened the clasp. Thereuponthey entered the church, and the priest joined their hands togetherbefore the altar, and married them. He led her home, but she didnot speak a single word the whole way. When they got back to theroyal palace, she hurried into the bride's chamber, put off themagnificent clothes and the jewels, dressed herself in her graygown, and kept nothing but the jewel on her neck, which she hadreceived from the bridegroom.
When the night came, and the bride was to be led into thePrince's apartment, she let her veil fall over her face, that he mightnot observe the deception. As soon as every one had gone away, hesaid to her, "What didst thou say to the nettle-plant which was grow-ing by the wayside?" "To which nettle-plant?" asked she; "I don'ttalk to nettle-plants." "If thou didst not do it, then thou art not thetrue bride," said he. So she bethought herself, and said,
"I must go out unto my maid.Who keeps my thoughts for me."
She went out and sought Maid Maleen. "Girl, what hast thou beensaying to the nettle?" "I said nothing but,
'Oh, nettle-plant.Little nettle-plant.What dost thou here alone?I have known the timeWhen I ate thee unboiled.When I ate thee unroasted.'"
The bride ran back into the chamber, and said, "I know now
what I said to the nettle," and she repeated the words which shehad just heard. "But what didst thou say to the foot-bridge whenwe went over it?" asked the King's son. "To the foot-bridge?" sheanswered; "I don't talk to foot-bridges." "Then thou art not the truebride." She again said,
"I must go out unto my maid.Who keeps my thoughts for me"
and ran out and found Maid Maleen, "Girl, what didst thou say tothe foot-bridge?" "I said nothing but,
'Foot-bridge, do not break,I am not the true bride.'"
"That costs thee thy lifel" cried the bride, but she hurried intothe room, and said, "I know now what I said to the foot-bridge,"and she repeated the words. "But what didst thou say to thechurch-door?" "To the church-door?" she replied; "I don't talk tochurch-doors." "Then thou art not the true bride."
She went out and found Maid Maleen, and said, "Girl, whatdidst thou say to the church-door?" "I said nothing but,
'Church-door, break not,I am not the true bride'"
"That will break thy neck for thee!" cried the bride, and flew intoa terrible passion, but she hastened back into the room, and said, "Iknow now what I said to the church-door," and she repeated thewords. "But where hast thou the jewel which I gave thee at thechurch-door?" "What jewel?" she answered; "thou didst not giveme any jewel." "I myself put it round thy neck, and I myself fas-tened it; if thou dost not know that, thou art not the true bride." Hedrew the veil from her face, and when he saw her immeasurableugliness, he sprang back terrified, and said, "How comest thouhere? Who art thou?" "I am thy betrothed bride, but because Ifeared lest the people should mock me when they saw me out ofdoors, I commanded the scullery-maid to dress herself in myclothes, and to go to chiurch instead of me." "Where is the girl?"said he; "I want to see her, go and bring her here." She went outand told the servants that the scullery-maid was an impostor, andthat they must take her out into the court-yard and strike oflF herhead. The servants laid hold of Maid Maleen and wanted to dragher out, but she screamed so loudly for help, that the King's son
heard her voice, hurried out of his chamber and ordered them toset the maiden free instantly.
Lights were brought, and then he saw on her neck the gold chainwhich he had given her at the church-door. "Thou art the truebride," said he, "who went with me to church; come with me nowto my room." When they were both alone, he said, "On the way tothe church thou didst name Maid Maleen, who was my betrothedbride; if I could believe it possible, I should think she was standingbefore me—thou art like her in every respect." She answered, "I amMaid Maleen, who for thy sake was imprisoned seven years in thedarkness, who suflEered hunger and thirst, and has lived so long inwant and poverty. Today, however, the sun is shining on me oncemore. I was married to thee in the church, and I am thy lawfulwife." Then they kissed each other, and were happy all the days oftheir lives. The false bride was rewarded for what she had done byhaving her head cut o£E.
The tower in which Maid Maleen had been imprisoned remainedstanding for a long time, and when the children passed by it theysang,
"Kling, klang, gloria.Who sits within this tower?A Kin^s daughter, she sits tvithin,A sight of her I cannot win.The wall it will not break.The stone cannot be pierced.Little Hans, with your coat so gay.Follow me, follow me, fast as you may."
Thebe was once upon a time an old Queen whose husband hadbeen dead for many years, and she had a beautiful daughter. Whenthe Princess grew up she was betrothed to a Prince who lived at agreat distance. When the time came for her to be married, and shehad to journey forth into the distant kingdom, the aged Queenpacked up for her many costly vessels of silver and gold, and trin-kets also of gold and silver, and cups and jewels; in short, everything
which appertained to a royal dowry, for she loved her child with allher heart. She likewise sent her maid in waiting, who was to ridewith her, and hand her over to the bridegroom, and each had ahorse for the journey, but the horse of the King's daughter wascalled Falada, and could speak. So when the hour of parting hadcome, the aged mother went into her bed-room, took a small knifeand cut her finger with it until it bled, then she held a white hand-kerchief to it into which she let three drops of blood fall, gave it toher daughter and said, "Dear child, preserve this carefully; it willbe of service to you on your way."
So they took a sorrowful leave of each other; the Princess put thepiece of cloth in her bosom, mounted her horse, and then wentaway to her bridegroom. After she had ridden for a while she felt aburning thirst, and said to her waiting-maid, "Dismount, and takemy cup which you have brought for me, and get me some waterfrom the stream, for I should like to drink." "If you are thirsty,"said the waiting-maid, "get off yomr horse yourself, and lie downand drink out of the water, I don't choose to be your servant." So inher great thirst the Princess alighted, bent down over the water inthe stream and drank, and was not allowed to drink out of thegolden cup. Then she said, "Ah, Heavenl" And the three drops ofblood answered, "If your mother knew this, her heart wouldbreak." But the King's daughter was humble, said nothing, andmounted her horse again.
She rode some miles further, but the day was warm, the sunscorched her, and she was thirsty once more, and when they cameto a stream of water, she again cried to her waiting-maid, "Dis-mount, and give me some water in my golden cup," for she hadlong ago forgotten the girl's ill words. But the waiting-maid saidstill more haughtily, "If you wish to drink, drink as you can, I don'tchoose to be your maid." Then in her great thirst the King's daugh-ter aKghted, bent over the flowing stream, wept and said, "Ah,Heavenl" And the drops of blood again replied, "If your motherknew this, her heart would break." And as she was thus drinkingand leaning right over the stream, the handkerchief with the threedrops of blood fell out of her bosom, and floated away with thewater without her observing it, so great was her trouble.
The waiting-maid, however, had seen it, and she rejoiced to thinkthat she had now power over the bride, for since the Princess hadlost the drops of blood, she had become weak and powerless. Sonow when she wanted to mount her horse again, the one that was
called Falada, the waiting-maid said, "Falada is more suitable forme, and my nag will do for you," and the Princess had to be con-tent with that. Then the waiting-maid, with many hard words, badethe Princess exchange her royal apparel for her own shabbyclothes; and at length she was compelled to swear by the clear skyabove her, that she would not say one word of this to any one atthe royal court, and if she had not taken this oath she would havebeen killed on the spot. But Falada saw all this, and observed itwell.
The waiting-maid now mounted Falada, and the true bride thebad horse, and thus they traveled onwards, until at length they en-tered the royal palace. There were great rejoicings over her arrival,and the Prince sprang forward to meet her, lifted the waiting-maidfrom her horse, and thought she was his consort. She was con-ducted upstairs, but the real Princess was left standing below. Thenthe old King looked out of the window and saw her standing in thecourtyard, and how dainty and delicate and beautiful she was, andinstantly went to the royal apartment, and asked the bride aboutthe girl she had with her who was standing down below in thecourtyard, and who she was. "I picked her up on my way for acompanion; give the girl something to work at, that she may notstand idle."
But the old King had no work for her, and knew of none, so hesaid, "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 himtend the geese. Soon afterwards the false bride said to the youngKing, "Dearest husband, I beg you to do me a favor." He an-swered, "I will do so most willingly." 'Then send for the knacker,and have the head of the horse on which I rode here cut ofiF, for itvexed me on the way." In reality, she was afraid that the horsemight tell how she had behaved to the King's daughter. Then shesucceeded in making the King promise that it should be done, andthe faithful Falada was to die.
This came to the ears of the real Princess, and she secretly prom-ised to pay the knacker a piece of gold if he would perform a smallservice for her. There was a great dark-looking gateway in thetown, through which morning and evening she had to pass with thegeese; would he be so good as to nail up Falada's head on it, so thatshe might see him again, more than once. The knacker's man prom-ised to do that, and cut off the head, and nailed it fast beneath thedark gateway.
Early in the morning, when she and Conrad drove out their flockbeneath 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 theirgeese into the country. And when they had come to the meadow,she sat down and unbound her hair which was like pure gold, andConrad saw it and delighted in its brightness, and wanted to pluckout a few hairs. Then she said,
"Blow, blow, thou gentle unnd, 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 faraway across country, and he was forced to rxm after it. When hecame back she had finished combing her hair and was putting it upagain, and he could not get any of it. Then Conrad was angry, andwould not speak to her, and thus they watched the geese until theevening, and then they went home.
Next day when they were driving the geese out through the darkgateway, the maiden said,
"Alas, Falada, hanging thereF'
"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 herhair, 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."
The Goose-Girl 69
Then the wind blew, and blew his little hat oflF his head and faraway, and Conrad was forced to run after it, and when he cameback, her hair had been put up a long time, and he could get noneof it, and so they looked after their geese till evening came.
But in the evening after they had got home, Conrad went to theold King, and said, "I won't tend the geese with that girl anylongerl" "Why not?" inquired the aged King. "Oh, because shevexes me the whole day long." Then the aged King commandedhim to relate what it was that she did to him. And Conrad said, "Inthe morning when we pass beneath the dark gateway with theflock, there is a sorry horse's head on the wall, and she says to it,
'Alas, Falada, hanging thereF
"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 pas-ture, and how when there he had to chase his hat.
The aged King commanded him to drive his flock out again nextday, and as soon as morning came, he placed himself behind thedark gateway, and heard how the maiden spoke to the head ofFalada, and then he too went into the country, and hid himself inthe thicket in the meadow. There he soon saw with his own eyesthe goose-girl and the goose-boy bringing their flock, and how aftera while she sat down and unplaited her hair, which shone with radi-ance. And soon she said,
"Blow, blow, thou gentle wind, I say.Blow Conrads 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 thathe had to run far away, while the maiden quietly went on combingand plaiting her hair, all of which the King observed. Then, quiteunseen, he went away, and when the goose-girl came home in theevening, he called her aside, and asked why she did all thesethings. "I may not tell you that, and I dare not lament my sorrowsto any human being, for I have sworn not to do so by the heavenwhich 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 noth-ing from her. Then said he, "If you will not tell me anything, tellyour sorrows to the iron-stove there," and he went away.
Then she crept into the iron-stove, and began to weep and la-ment, and emptied her whole heart, and said, "Here am I desertedby the whole world, and yet I am a King's daughter, and a falsewaiting-maid has by force brought me to such a pass that I havebeen compelled to put off my royal apparel, and she has taken myplace with my bridegroom, and I have to perform menial service asa goose-girl. If my mother did but know that, her heart wouldbreak."
The aged King, however, was standing outside by the pipe of thestove, and was listening to what she said, and heard it. Then hecame back again, and bade her come out of the stove. And royalgarments were placed on her, and it was marvelous how beautifulshe wasl The aged King summoned his son, and revealed to himthat he had got the false bride who was only a waiting-maid, butthat the true one was standing there, as the sometime goose-girl.The young King rejoiced with all his heart when he saw her beautyand youth, and a great feast was made ready to which all the peo-ple and all good friends were invited.
At the head of the table sat the bridegroom with the King'sdaughter at one side of him, and the waiting-maid on the other, butthe waiting-maid was bhnded, and did not recognize the Princessin her dazzling array. When they had eaten and drunk, and weremerry, the aged King asked the waiting-maid as a riddle, what aperson deserved who had behaved in such and such a way to hermaster, and at the same time related the whole story, and askedwhat sentence such an one merited.
Then the false bride said, "She deserves no better fate than to bestripped entirely naked, and put in a barrel which is studded insidewith pointed nails, and two white horses should be harnessed to it,which will drag her along through one street after another, till sheis dead." "It is you," said the aged King, "and you have pro-nounced yoiur own sentence, and thus shall it be done unto you."When the sentence had been carried out, the young King marriedhis true bride, and both of them reigned over their kingdom inpeace and happiness.
There once was a young fellow who had learnt the trade of lock-smith, and told his father he would now go out into the world andseek his fortune. "Very well," said the father, "I am quite contentwith that," and gave him some money for his journey. So he trav-eled about and looked for work. After a time he resolved not to fol-low the trade of locksmith any more, for he no longer liked it, but hetook a fancy for hunting. Then there met him in his rambles ahuntsman dressed in green, who asked whence he came andwhither he was going. The youth said he was a locksmith's appren-tice, but that the trade no longer pleased him, and he had a lildngfor huntsmanship—would he teach it to him? "Oh, yes," said thehuntsman, "if thou wilt go with me."
The young fellow went with him, bound himself to him for someyears, and learnt the art of hunting. After this he wished to try hisluck elsewhere, and the huntsman gave him nothing in the way ofpayment but an air-gun, which had, however, this property, that ithit its mark without fail whenever he shot with it. Then he set outand found himself in a very large forest, which he could not get tothe end of in one day. When evening came he seated himself in ahigh tree in order to escape from the wild beasts.
Towards midnight, it seemed to him as if a tiny little light glim-mered in the distance. He looked down through the branches to-wards it, and kept well in his mind where it was. But in the firstplace, he took off his hat and threw it down in the direction of thelight, so that he might go to the hat as a mark when he had de-scended. Then he got down and went to his hat, put it on again andwent straight forwards. The farther he went, the larger the lightgrew, and when he got close to it he saw that it was an enormousfire, and that three giants were sitting by it, who had an ox on thespit, and were roasting it. Presently one of them said, "I must justtaste if the meat will soon be fit to eat," and pulled a piece off, andwas about to put it in his mouth when the huntsman shot it out ofhis hand. "Well, really," said the giant, "if the wind has not blownthe bit out of my hand!" and helped himself to another. But whenhe was just about to bite into it, the huntsman again shot it awayfrom 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 mypiece away from me?" "I have not snatched it away," said theother, "a sharpshooter must have shot it away from thee." Thegiant took another piece, but could not, however, keep it in hishand, for the huntsman shot it out. Then the giant said. That mustbe a good shot to shoot the bit out of one's very mouth, such an onewould be useful to us." And he cried aloud, "Come here, thousharpshooter, seat thyself at the fire beside us and eat thy fill, wewill not hurt thee; but if thou wilt not come, and we have to bringthee by force, thou art a lost manl"
At this invitation the youth went up to them and told them hewas a skilled huntsman, and that whatever he aimed at with hisgun, he was certain to hit. Then they said if he would go with themhe should be well treated, and they told him that outside the forestthere was a great lake, behind which stood a tower, and in thetower was imprisoned a lovely Princess, whom they wished verymuch to carry ofiE. "Yes," said he, "I will soon get her for you."Then they added, "But there is still something else; there is a tinyHttle dog, which begins to bark directly any one goes near, and assoon as it barks every one in the royal palace wakens up, and forthis reason we cannot get there; canst thou imdertake to shoot itdead?" "Yes," said he, "that will be a Httle bit of fun for me." Afterthis he got into a boat and rowed over the lake, and as soon as helanded, the little dog came running out, and was about to bark, butthe huntsman took his air-gun and shot it dead. When the giantssaw that, they rejoiced, and thought they already had the King'sdaughter safe, but the huntsman wished first to see how mattersstood, and told them that they must stay outside until he calledthem. Then he went into the castle, and aU was perfectly quietwithin, and every one was asleep.
When he opened the door of the first room, a sword was hangingon the wall which was made of pure silver, and there was a goldenstar on it, and the name of the King, and on a table near it lay asealed letter which he broke open, and inside it was written thatwhosoever had the sword could kill everything which opposed him.So he took the sword from the wall, hung it at his side and wentonwards; then he entered the room where the King's daughter waslying sleeping, and she was so beautiful that he stood still and,holding his breath, looked at her. He thought to himself, "How canI give an innocent maiden into the power of the wild giants, whohave evil in their minds?" He looked about further, and under thebed stood a pair of slippers; on the right one was her father's name
The Skilful Huntsman 73
with a star, and on the left her own name with a star. She wore akoa great neck-kerchief of silk embroidered with gold, and on theright side was her father's name, and on the left her own, all ingolden letters. Then the huntsman took a pair of scissors and cutthe right comer off, and put it in his knapsack, and then he alsotook the right slipper with the King^s name, and thrust that in.
The maiden still lay sleeping, and she was quite sewn into hernight-dress, and he cut a morsel from this also, and thrust it in withthe rest, but he did all without touching her. Then he went forthand left her lying asleep undisturbed, and when he came to thegate again, the giants were still standing outside waiting for him,and expecting that he was bringing the Princess. But he cried tothem that they were to come in, for the maiden was already in theirpower, that he could not open the gate to them, but there was ahole through which they must creep. Then the first approached,and the huntsman wound the giant's hair round his hand, pulledthe head in, and cut it off at one stroke with his sword, and thendrew the rest of him in. He called to the second and cut his headoff likewise, and then he killed the third also, and he was wellpleased that he had freed the beautiful maiden from her enemies,and he cut out their tongues and put them in his knapsack. Thenthought he, "1 will go home to my father and let him see what Ihave already done, and afterwards I wiU travel about the world;the luck which God is pleased to grant me wiU easily find me."
When the King in the castle awoke, he saw the three giants lyingthere dead. So he went into the sleeping-room of his daughter,awoke her, and asked who could have killed the giants. Then saidshe, T>ear father, I know not, I have been asleep." But when shearose and would have put on her sfippers, the right one was gone,and when she looked at her neck-kerchief it was cut, and the rightcomer was missing, and when she looked at her night-dress a piecewas cut out of it. The King summoned his whole court together,soldiers and every one else who was there, and asked who had sethis daughter at liberty, and killed the giants.
Now it happened that he had a captain, who was one-eyed and ahideous man, and he said that he had done it. Then the old Kingsaid that as he had accomplished this, he should marry his daugh-ter. But the maiden said, "Rather than marry him, dear father, Iwill go away into the world as far as my legs can carry me." TheKing said that if she would not marry him she should take off herroyal garments and wear peasant's clothing, and go forth, and thatshe 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 borrowedcrockery enough for a stall, and she promised him also that if shehad sold it by the evening, she would pay for it. Then the King saidshe was to seat herself in a comer with it and seU it, and he ar-ranged with some peasants to drive over it with their carts, so thateverything should be broken into a thousand pieces. When there-fore the King's daughter had placed her stall in the street, by camethe carts, and broke all she had into tiny fragments. She began toweep and said, "Alas, how shall I ever pay for the pots now?" TheKing had, however, wished by this to force her to marry the cap-tain; but instead of that, she again went to the potter, and askedhim if he would lend to her once more. He said, "No," she mustfirst pay for the things she had already had.
Then she went to her father and cried and lamented, and saidshe would go forth into the world. Then said he, "I will have a littlehut built for thee in the forest outside, and in it thou shalt stay aUthy life long and cook for every one, but thou shalt take no moneyfor it." When the hut was ready, a sign was hung on the doorwhereon was written, "Today given, tomorrow sold." There sheremained a long time, and it was rumored about the world that amaiden was there who cooked without asking for payment, andthat this was set forth on a sign outside her door. The huntsmanheard it likewise, and thought to himself, "That would suit thee.Thou art poor, and hast no money." So he took his air-gun and hisknapsack, wherein all the things which he had formerly carriedaway with him from the castle as tokens of his truthfulness werestill lying, and went into the forest, and found the hut with thesign, "Today given, tomorrow sold."
He had put on the sword with which he had cut off the heads ofthe three giants, and thus entered the hut, and ordered somethingto eat to be given to him. He was charmed with the beautifulmaiden, who was indeed as lovely as any picture. She asked himwhence he came and whither he was going, and he said, "I amroaming about the world." Then she asked him where he had gotthe sword, for that truly her father's name was on it. He asked herif she were the King's daughter. "Yes," answered she. "With thissword," said he, "did I cut off the heads of three giants," And hetook their tongues out of his knapsack in proof. Then he alsoshowed her the sHpper, and the comer of the neck-kerchief, and thebit of the night-dress. Hereupon she was overjoyed, and said thathe was the one who had delivered her.
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 wasthe man who had really set her free from the giants. And when theaged King saw all the proofs of this, he could no longer doubt, andsaid that he was very glad he knew how everything had happened,and that the huntsman should have her to wife, on which the mai-den was glad at heart. Then she dressed the huntsman as if he werea foreign lord, and the King ordered a feast to be prepared. Whenthey went to table, the captain sat on the left side of the King'sdaughter, but the huntsman was on the right, and the captainthought he was a foreign lord who had come on a visit.
When they had eaten and drunk, the old King said to the captainthat he would set before him something which he must guess."Supposing any one said that he had killed the three giants and hewere asked where the giants' tongues were, and he were forced togo and look, and there were none in their heads, how could thathappen?" The captain said, "Then they cannot have had any." "NotSo," said the King. "Every animal has a tongue," and then he like-wise asked what any one would deserve who made such an answer.The captain replied, "He ought to be torn in pieces." Then theKing said he had pronounced his own sentence, and the captainwas put in prison and then torn in four pieces; but the King'sdaughter was married to the huntsman. After this he brought hisfather and mother, and they lived with their son in happiness, andafter the death of the old King he received the kingdom.
The Princess in Disguise
A KING once had a wife with golden hair who was so beautiful thatnone on earth could be found equal to her. It happened that shefell ill, and as soon as she knew she must die, she sent for the Kingand said to him, "After my death I know you will marry anotherwife; but you must promise me that, however beautiful she may be,if she is not as beautiful as I am and has not golden hair Uke mineyou will not marry her."
The King had no sooner given his promise than she closed hereyes and died.
For a long time he refused to be comforted, and thought it wasimpossible he could ever take another wife. At length his counselors
came to him, and said, "A King should not remain unmarried; weought to have a Queen."
So he at last consented, and then messengers were sent far andwide to find a bride whose beauty should equal that of the deadQueen. But none was to be found in the whole world; for evenwhen equally beautiful they had not golden hair. So the messengersreturned without obtaining what they sought.
Now, the King had a daughter who was quite as beautiful as herdead mother, and had also golden hair. She had all this while beengrowing up, and very soon the King noticed how exactly she re-sembled her dead mother. So he sent for his counselors, and said tothem, "1 wiU marry my daughter; she is the image of my dead wife,and no other bride can be found to enable me to keep my promiseto her."
When the counselors heard this, they were dreadfully shocked,and said, 'It is forbidden for a father to marry his daughter; noth-ing but evil could spring from such a sin, and the kingdom will beruined."
When the King's daughter heard of her father's proposition shewas greatly alarmed, the more so as she saw how resolved he wasto carry out his intention. She hoped, however, to be able to savehim and herself from such ruin and disgrace, so she said to him,"Before I consent to yoiu- wish I shall require three things—a dressas golden as the sim, another as silvery as the moon, and a third asglittering as the stars; and besides this, I shall require a mantlemade of a thousand sldns of rough fur sewn together, and every an-imal in the kingdom must give a piece of his skin toward it."
"Ahl" she thought, 1 have asked for impossibilities, and I hope Ishall be able to make my father give up his wicked intentions."
The King, however, was not to be diverted from his purpose. Allthe most skilful young women in the kingdom were employed toweave the three dresses, one to be as golden as the sun, another assilvery as the moon, and the third as glittering as the stars. He senthunters into the forest to kill the wild animals and bring home theirsldns, of which the mantle was to be made; and at last when all wasfinished he brought them and laid them before her, and then said,"Tomorrow our marriage shall take place."
Then the King's daughter saw that there was no hope of chang-ing her father's heart, so she determined to run away from thecastle.
In the night, when every one slept, she rose and took from herjewel-case a gold ring, a gold spinning-wheel, and a golden hook.
The three dresses of the sun, moon, and stars she folded in so smalla parcel that they were placed in a walnut-shell; then she put onthe fur mantle, stained her face and hands black with walnut-jwice,and committing herself to the care of Heaven, she left her home.
After traveling the whole night she came at last to a large forest,and feeling very tired she crept into a hollow tree and went tosleep. The sun rose, but she still slept on, and did not awake tillnearly noon.
It happened on this very day that the King to whom the woodbelonged was hunting in the forest, and when his hoimds came tothe tree they sniffed about, and ran round and roimd the tree bark-ing loudly. The King called to his hunters, and said, "J^^* go andsee what wild animal the dogs are barking at."
They obeyed, and quickly returning told the King that in the hol-low tree was a most beautiful creatiure, such as they had never seenbefore, that the sldn was covered with a thousand different sorts offur, and that it was fast asleep.
"Then," said the King, "go and see if you can captiure it alive.Then bind it on the wagon and bring it home."
While the hunters were binding the maiden she awoke, and fullof terror cried out to them, "I am only a poor child, forsaken by myfather and mother; take pity on me, and take me with youl" "Well,"they replied, "you may be useful to the cook, little Roughsldn.Come with us; you can at least sweep up the ashes."
So they seated her on the wagon and took her home to the King'scastle. They showed her a little stable under the steps, where nodaylight ever came, and said, "Roughsldn, here you can Hve andsleep." So the King's daughter was sent into the kitchen to fetch thewood, draw the water, stir the fire, pluck the fowls, look after thevegetables, sweep the ashes, and do all the hard work.
Poor Roughskin, as they called her, lived for a long time mostmiserably, and the beautiful icing's daughter knew not when itwould end or how. It happened, however, after a time that a festi-val was to take place in the castle, so she said to the cook, "May Igo out for a Httle while to see the company arrive? I will stand out-side the door." "Yes, you may go," he replied, 'Taut in half an hour Ishall want you to sweep up the ashes and put the kitchen in order."
Then she took her little oil-lamp, went into the stable, threw offthe fur coat, washed the nut-stains from her face and hands, so thather full beauty appeared before the day. After this she opened thenutshell and took out the dress that was golden as the sun, and putit on. As soon as she was quite dressed she went out and presented
herself at the entrance of the castle as a visitor. No one recognizedher as Roughskin; they thought she was a King's daughter, and sentand told the King of her arrival. He went to receive her, ofiFered herhis hand, and while they danced together he thought in his heart,"My eyes have never seen any maiden before so beautiful as this."
As soon as the dance was over she bowed to the King, and beforehe could look round she had vanished, no one knew where. Thesentinel at the castle gate was called and questioned, but he hadnot seen any one pass.
But she had run to her stable, quickly removed her dress, stainedher face and hands, put on her fur coat, and was again Roughskin.When she entered the kitchen and began to do her work and sweepup the ashes, the cook said, "Leave that alone till tomorrow; I wantyou to cook some soup for the King. I will also taste a httle when itis ready. But do not let one of your hairs faU in, or you will getnothing to eat in future from me."
Then the cook went out, and Roughskin made the King's soup asnicely as she could, and cut bread for it, and when it was ready shefetched from her Httle stable her gold ring and laid it in the dish inwhich the soup was prepared.
After the King had left the baU-room he called for the soup, andwhile eating it thought he had never tasted better soup in his life.But when the dish was nearly empty he saw to his surprise a goldring lying at the bottom, and could not imagine how it came there.Then he ordered the cook to come to him, and he was in a terriblefright when he heard the order. "You must certainly have let a hairfall into the soup; if you have, I shall thrash youl" he said.
As soon as he appeared the King said, "Who cooked this soup?""I cooked it," he replied. "That is not true," said the King. 'Thissoup is made quite differently and much better than you ever madeit"
Then the cook was obliged to confess that Roughskin had madethe soup. "Go and send her to me," said the King.
As soon as she appeared the King said to her, "Who art thou,maiden?" She replied, "I am a poor child, without father ormother." He asked again, "Why are you in my castle?" "Because Iam trying to earn my bread by helping the cook," she replied."How came this ring in the soup?" he said again. 'T. know nothingabout the ringi" she replied.
When the King found he could learn nothing from Roughskin, hesent her away. A httle time after this there was another festival,and Roughskin had again permission from the cook to go and see
The Princess in Disguise 79
the visitor, ^^ut," he added, "come back in half an hour and cookfor the King the soup that he is so fond of."
She promised to return, and ran quickly into her httle stable,washed off the stains, and took out of the nutshell her dress, silveryas the moon, and put it on. Then she appeared at the castle like aKing's daughter, and the King came to receive her with great pleas-ure; he was so glad to see her again, and while the dancing contin-ued the King kept her as his partner. When the baU ended shedisappeared so quickly that the King could not imagine what hadbecome of her. But she had rushed down to her stable, made her-self again the rough little creature that was called Roughskan, andwent into the kitchen to cook the soup.
While the cook was upstairs she fetched the golden spin-ning-wheel and dropped it into the soup as soon as it was ready.The King again ate it with great relish; it was as good as before,and when he sent for the cook and asked who made it, he wasobliged to own that it was Roughsldn. She was also ordered to ap-pear before the King, but he could get nothing out of her, except-ing that she was a poor child, and knew nothing of the golden spin-ning-wheel.
At the King's third festival everything happened as before. Butthe cook said, "I will let you go and see the dancing-room this time,Roughskin; but I beheve you are a witch, for although the soup isgood, and the King says it is better than I can make it, there is al-ways something dropped into it which I cannot understand."Roughskin did not stop to listen; she ran quickly to her little stable,washed off the nut-stains, and this time dressed herself in the dressthat glittered hke the stars. When the King came as before to re-ceive her in the hall, he thought he had never seen such a beautifulwoman in his Hfe. While they were dancing he contrived, withoutbeing noticed by the maiden, to slip a gold ring on her finger, andhe had given orders that the dancing should continue longer thanusual. When it ended, he wanted to hold her hand still, but shepulled it away, and sprang so quickly among the people that shevanished from his eyes.
She ran out of breath to her stable under the steps, for she knewthat she had remained longer away than half an hour, and therewas not time to take off her dress, so she threw on her fur cloakover it, and in her haste she did not make her face black enough,nor hide her golden hair properly; her hands also remained white.However, when she entered the kitchen, the cook was still away, soshe prepared the King's soup, and dropped into it the golden hook.
The King, when he found another trinket in his soup, sent imme-diately for Roughskin, and as she entered the room he saw the ringon her white finger which he had placed there. Instantly he seizedher hand and held her fast, but in her struggles to get free the furmantle opened and the star-gHttering dress was plainly seen. TheKing caught the mantle and tore it off, and as he did so her goldenhair fell over her shoulders, and she stood before him in her fullsplendor, and felt that she could no longer conceal who she was.Then she wiped the soot and stains from her face, and was beauti-ful to the eyes of the King as any woman upon earth.
"You shall be my dear bride," said the King, "and we will neverbe parted again, although I know not who you are."
Then she told him her past history, and all that had happened toher, and he foimd that she was, as he thought, a King's daughter.Soon after the marriage was celebrated, and they Hved happily tilltheir death.
There was once a rich man whose wife lay sick, and when she felther end drawing near she called to her only daughter to come nearher bed, and said,
"Dear child, be good and pious, and God will always take care ofyou, and I will look down upon you from heaven, and will be withyou."
And then she closed her eyes and died. The maiden went everyday to her mother's grave and wept, and was always pious andgood. When the winter came the snow covered the grave with awhite covering, and when the sun came in the early spring andmelted it away, the man took to himself another wife.
The new wife brought two daughters home with her, and theywere beautiful and fair in appearance, but at heart were black andugly. And then began very evil times for the poor step-daughter.
"Is the stupid creature to sit in the same room with us?" saidthey; "those who eat food must earn it. She is nothing but akitchen-maid!"
They took away her pretty dresses, and put on her an old graykirtle, and gave her wooden shoes to wear.
"Just look now at the proud princess, how she is decked out!"cried they laughing, and then they sent her into the kitchen. Thereshe was obliged to do heavy work from morning to night, get upearly in the morning, draw water, make the fires, cook, and wash.Besides that, the sisters did their utmost to torment her—mockingher, and strewing peas and lentils among the ashes, and settingher to pick them up. In the evenings, when she was quite tired outwith her hard day's work, she had no bed to he on, but was obhgedto rest on the hearth among the cinders. And because she alwayslooked dusty and dirty, as if she had slept in the cinders, theynamed her Cinderella.
It happened one day that the father went to the fair, and heasked his two step-daughters what he should bring back for them."Fine clothesl" said one. "Pearls and jewels!" said the other. "Butwhat will you have, Cinderella?" said he. "The first twig, father,that strikes against yoiur hat on the way home; that is what I shouldlike you to bring me."
So he bought for the two step-daughters fine clothes, pearls, andjewels, and on his way back, as he rode through a green lane, ahazel twig struck against his hat; and he broke it ofi^ and carried ithome with him. And when he reached home he gave to the step-daughters what they had wished for, and to Cinderella he gave thehazel twig. She thanked him, and went to her mother's grave, andplanted this twig there, weeping so bitterly that the tears fell upon itand watered it, and it flourished and became a fine tree. Cinderellawent to see it three times a day, and wept and prayed, and eachtime a white bird rose up from the tree, and if she uttered any wishthe bird brought her whatever she had wished for.
Now it came to pass that the King ordained a festival that shouldlast for three days, and to which all the beautiful yotmg women ofthat country were bidden, so that the King's son might choose abride from among them. When the two step-daughters heard thatthey too were bidden to appear, they felt very pleased, and theycalled Cinderella and said, "Comb our hair, brush our shoes, andmake our buckles fast, we are going to the wedding feast at theKing's castle."
When she heard this, Cinderella could not help crying, for shetoo would have fiked to go to the dance, and she begged her step-mother to allow her. "What! You Cinderella!" said she, "in all yourdust and dirt, you want to go to the festival! you that have no dressand no shoes! you want to dance!"
But as she persisted in asking, at last the step-mother said, 1
have strewed a dishful of lentils in the ashes, and if you can pickthem all up again in two hours you may go with us."
Then the maiden went to the back-door that led into the garden,and called out,
"O gentle doves, O turtle-doves^
And all the birds that be,
The lentils that in ashes lie
Come and pick up for me!
The good must be put in the dish.The bad you may eat if you wish."
Then there came to the Idtchen-window two white doves, andafter them some turtle-doves, and at last a crowd of all the birdsunder heaven, chirping and fluttering, and they alighted among theashes; and the doves nodded with their heads, and began to pick,peck, pick, peck, and then aU the others began to pick, peck, pick,peck, and put all the good grains into the dish. Before an hour wasover all was done, and they flew away.
Then the maiden brought the dish to her step-mother, feelingjoyful, and thinking that now she should go to the feast; but thestep-mother said, "No, Cinderella, you have no proper clothes, andyou do not know how to dance, and you would be laughed atl" Andwhen Cinderella cried for disappointment, she added, "If you canpick two dishes full of lentils out of the ashes, nice and clean, youshall go with us," thinking to herself, "for that is not possible."When she had strewed two dishes full of lentils among the ashesthe maiden went through the back-door into the garden, and cried,
"O gentle doves, O turtle-doves.
And all the birds that be.
The lentils that in ashes lie
Come and pick up for met
The good must be put in the dish.The bad you may eat if you wish."
So there came to the Idtchen-window two white doves, and thensome turtle-doves, and at last a crowd of all the other birds underheaven, chirping and fluttering, and they aKghted among the ashes,and the doves nodded with their heads and began to pick, peck,pick, peck, and then all the others began to pick, peck, pick, peck,and put all the good grains into the dish. And before half-an-hourwas over it was all done, and they flew away. Then the maiden tookthe dishes to the step-mother, feeling joyful, and thinking that nowshe should go with them to the feast; but she said, "All this is of no
good to you; you cannot come with us, for you have no properclothes, and cannot dance; you would put us to shame." Then sheturned her back on poor Cinderella and made haste to set out withher two proud daughters.
And as there was no one left in the house, Cinderella went to hermother's grave, under the hazel bush, and cried,
"Little tree, little tree, shake over me.That silver and gold may come down and cover me."
Then the bird threw down a dress of gold and silver, and a pairof slippers embroidered with silk and silver. And in all haste sheput on the dress and went to the festival. But her step-mother andsisters did not know her, and thought she must be a foreign Prin-cess, she looked so beautiful in her golden dress. Of Cinderella theynever thought at all, and supposed that she was sitting at home,and picking the lentils out of the ashes. The King's son came tomeet her, and took her by the hand and danced with her, and herefused to stand up with any one else, so that he might not beobliged to let go her hand; and when any one came to claim it heanswered, "She is my partner."
And when the evening came she wanted to go home, but thePrince said he would go with her to take care of her, for he wantedto see where the beautiful maiden hved. But she escaped him, andjumped up into the pigeon-house. Then the Prince waited until thefather came, and told him the strange maiden had jumped into thepigeon-house. The father thought to himself, *Tt surely cannot beCinderella," and called for axes and hatchets, and had the pigeon-house cut down, but there was no one in it. And when they enteredthe house there sat Cinderella in her dirty clothes among the cin-ders, and a little oil-lamp burnt dimly in the chinmey; for Cin-derella had been very quick, and had jumped out of the pigeon-house again, and had run to the hazel bush; and there she hadtaken oflF her beautiful dress and had laid it on the grave, and thebird had carried it away again, and then she had put on her littlegray kirtle again, and had sat down in the kitchen among the cin-ders.
The next day, when the festival began anew, and the parents andstep-sisters had gone to it, Cinderella went to the hazel bush andcried,
"Little tree, little tree, shake over me.That silver and gold may come down and cover me."
Then the bird cast down a still more splendid dress than on theday before. And when she appeared in it among the guests everyone was astonished at her beauty. The Prince had been waitinguntil she came, and he took her hand and danced with her alone.And when any one else came to invite her he said, "She is mypartner."
And when the evening came she wanted to go home, and thePrince followed her, for he wanted to see to what house shebelonged; but she broke away from him, and ran into the garden atthe back of the house. There stood a fine large tree, bearing splen-did pears; she leapt as lightly as a squirrel among the branches, andthe Prince did not know what had become of her. So he waiteduntil the father came, and then he told him that the strange maidenhad rushed from him, and that he thought she had gone up into thepear tree. The father thought to himself, "It surely cannot be Cin-derella," and called for an axe, and felled the tree, but there was noone in it. And when they went into the kitchen there sat Cinderellaamong the cinders, as usual, for she had got down the other side ofthe tree, and had taken back her beautiful clothes to the bird onthe hazel bush, and had put on her old gray Idrtle again.
On the third day, when the parents and the step-children had setoff, Cinderella went again to her mother's grave, and said to thetree,
"Little tree, little tree, shake over me.That silver and gold may some dovm and cover me"
Then the bird cast down a dress, the hke of which had neverbeen seen for splendor and brilliancy, and slippers that were ofgold.
And when she appeared in thl^ dress at the feast nobody knewwhat to say for wonderment. The Prince danced with her alone,and if any one else asked her he answered, "She is my partner."
And when it was evening Cinderella wanted to go home, and thePrince was about to go with her, when she ran past him so quicklythat he could not follow her. But he had laid a plan, and hadcaused all the steps to be spread with pitch, so that as she rusheddown them the left shoe of the maiden remained sticking in it. ThePrince picked it up, and saw that it was of gold, and very small andslender. The next morning he went to the father and told him thatnone should be his bride save the one whose foot the golden shoeshould fit.
Then the two sisters were very glad, because they had pretty
feet. The eldest went to her room to try on the shoe, and hermother stood by. But she could not get her great toe into it, for theshoe was too small; then her mother handed her a knife, and said,"Cut the toe ofiF, for when you are Queen you wiU never have to goon foot." So the girl cut her toe oflF, squeezed her foot into the shoe,concealed the pain, and went down to the Prince. Then he took hervidth him on his horse as his bride, and rode oflF. They had to passby the grave, and there sat the two pigeons on the hazel bush, andcried,
"There they go, there they go!There is blood on her shoe;The shoe is too small,—Not the right bride at alir
Then the Prince looked at her shoe, and saw the blood flowing.And he turned his horse round and took the false bride home again,saying she was not the right one, and that the other sister must tryon the shoe. So she went into her room to do so, and got her toescomfortably in, but her heel was too large. Then her motherhanded her the knife, saying, "Cut a piece off yoiu: heel; when youare Queen you will never have to go on foot."
So the girl cut a piece off her heel, and thrust her foot into theshoe, concealed the pain, and went down to the Prince, who tookhis bride before him on his horse and rode off. When they passedby the hazel bush the two pigeons sat there and cried,
"There they go, there they go!There is blood on her shoe;The shoe is too small,—Not the right bride at all!"
Then the Prince looked at her foot, and saw how the blood wasflowing from the shoe, and staining the white stocking. And heturned his horse roimd and brought the false bride home again."This is not the right one," said he, "have you no other daughter?"
"No," said the man, "only my dead wiie left behind her a littlestunted Cinderella; it is impossible that she can be the bride." Butthe King's son ordered her to be sent for, but the mother said, "Ohno! she is much too dirty, I could not let her be seen." But he wouldhave her fetched, and so Cinderella had to appear.
First she washed her face and hands qioite clean, and went inand curtseyed to the Prince, who held out to her the golden shoe.Then she sat down on a stool, drew her foot out of the heavy
wooden shoe, and slipped it into the golden one, which fitted it per-fectly. And when she stood up, and the Prince looked in her face,he knew again the beautiful maiden that had danced with him, andhe cried, "This is the right bridel"
The step-mother and the two sisters were thunderstruck, and grewpale with anger; but he put Cinderella before him on his horse androde off. And as they passed the hazel bush, the two white pigeonscried,
"There they go, there they gotNo blood on her shoe;The shoe's not too small.The right bride is she after all."
And when they had thus cried, they came flying after and perchedon Cinderella's shoulders, one on the right, the other on the left,and so remained.
And when her wedding with the Prince was appointed to be heldthe false sisters came, hoping to curry favor, and to take part in thefestivities. So as the bridal procession went to the church, the eldestwalked on the right side and the younger on the left, and the pi-geons picked out an eye of each of them. And as they returned theelder was on the left side and the younger on the right, and the pi-geons picked out the other eye of each of them. And so they werecondemned to go blind for the rest of their days because of theirwickedness and falsehood.
There weke once two brothers, the one rich, the other poor. Therich one, however, gave nothing to the poor one, and he gained ascanty living by trading in com, and often did so badly that he hadno bread for his wife and children. Once when he was wheeling abarrow through the forest he saw, on one side of him, a great, bare,naked-looking mountain, and as he had never seen it before, hestood still and stared at it with amazement.
While he was thus standing he saw twelve great, wild men com-ing towards him, and as he believed they were robbers he pushedhis barrow into the thicket, climbed up a tree, and waited to see
Simeli Mountain Sj
what would happen. The twelve men, however, went to the moun-tain and cried, "Semsi mountain, Semsi moimtain, open"; and im-mediately the barren mountain opened down the middle, and thetwelve went into it, and as soon as they were within, it shut. After ashort time, however, it opened again, and the men came forth car-rying heavy sacks on their shoulders, and when they were all oncemore in the daylight they said, "Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain,shut thyself; then the mountain closed together, and there was nolonger any entrance to be seen to it, and the twelve went away.
When they were quite out of sight the poor man got down fromthe tree, and was curious to know what really was secretly hiddenin the mountain. So he went up to it and said, "Semsi moimtain,Semsi mountain, open"; and the moimtain opened to him also. Thenhe went inside, and the whole mountain was a cavern full of silverand gold, and behind lay great piles of pearls and sparkling jewels,heaped up Hke com. The poor man hardly knew what to do, andwhether he might take any of these treasiu-es for himself or not; butat last he filled his pockets with gold, but he left the pearls and pre-cious stones where they were. When he came out again he alsosaid, "Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain, shut thyself"; and the moun-tain closed itself, and he went home with his barrow.
And now he had no more cause for anxiety, but could buy breadfor his wife and children with his gold, and wine into the bargain.He Hved joyously and uprightly, gave help to the poor, and didgood to every one. When, however, the money came to an end hewent to his brother, borrowed a measure that held a bushel, andbrought himself some more, but did not touch any of the most valu-able things. When for the third time he wanted to fetch something,he again borrowed the measure of his brother. The rich man had,however, long been envious of his brother's possessions, and of thehandsome way of living which he had set on foot, and could not xm-derstand from whence the riches came, and what his brotherwanted with the measure. Then he thought of a cunning trick, andcovered the bottom of the measure with pitch, and when he got themeasure back a piece of money was sticking in it.
He went at once to his brother and asked him, "What hast thoubeen measuring in the bushel measure?" "Com and barley," saidthe other. Then he showed him the piece of money, and threatenedthat if he did not tell the truth he would accuse him before a courtof justice. The poor man then told him everything, just as it hadhappened. The rich man, however, ordered his carriage to be madeready, and drove away, resolved to use the opportunity better than
his brother had done, and to bring back with him quite differenttreasures.
When he came to the mountain he cried, "Semsi mountain, Semsimoimtain, open." The mountain opened, and he went inside it.There lay the treasures all before him, and for a long time he didnot know which to clutch at first. At length he loaded himself withas many precious stones as he could carry. He wished to carry hisburden outside, but, as his heart and soul were entirely full of thetreasures, he had forgotten the name of the mountain, and cried,"Simeli moimtain, Simeli mountain, open." That, however, was notthe right name, and the mountain never stirred, but remained shut.Then he was alarmed, but the longer he thought about it the morehis thoughts confused themselves, and his treasures were no moreof any use to him.
In the evening the mountain opened, and the twelve robberscame in, and when they saw him they laughed, and cried out, "Bird,have we caught thee at lastl Didst thou think we had never noticedthat thou hadst been in here twice? We could not catch thee then;this third time thou shalt not get out again!" Then he cried, *Tt wasnot I, it was my brother," but let him beg for his life and say whathe would, they cut his head off.
The Glass CofEn
Let no one ever say that a poor tailor cannot do great things andwin high honors; all that is needed is that he should go to the rightsmithy, and what is of most consequence, that he should have goodluck. A civil, adroit tailor s apprentice once went out traveling, andcame into a great forest, and, as he did not know the way, he losthimself. Night fell, and nothing was left for him to do, but to seek abed in this painful solitude. He might certainly have found a goodbed on the soft moss, but the fear of wild beasts let him have norest there, and at last he was forced to make up his mind to spendthe night in a tree. He sought out a high oak, climbed up to the topof it, and thanked God that he had his goose with him, for other-wise the wind which blew over the top of the tree would havecarried him away.After he had spent some hours in the darkness, not without fear
and trembling, he saw at a very short distance the glimmer of alight, and as he thought that a human habitation might be there,where he would be better ofiE than on the branches of a tree, he gotcarefully down and went towards the light. It guided him to asmall hut that was woven together of reeds and rushes. He knockedboldly, the door opened, and by the light which came forth he sawa little hoary old man who wore a coat made of bits of colored stuffsewn together.
"Who are you, and what do you want?" asked the man in agrumbling voice, "l am a poor tailor," he answered, "whom nighthas surprised here in the wilderness, and I earnestly beg you totake me into your hut until morning." "Go your way," replied theold man in a surly voice, "I will have nothing to do with rascals.Seek shelter elsewhere." After these words he was about to shp intohis hut again, but the tailor held him so tightly by the comer of hiscoat, and pleaded so piteously, that the old man, who was not so ill-natured as he wished to appear, was at last softened, and took himinto the hut with him where he gave him something to eat, andthen pointed out to him a very good bed in a comer.
The weary tailor needed no rocking; but slept sweetly till morn-ing, but even then would not have thought of getting up, if he hadnot been aroused by a great noise. A violent sound of screamingand roaring forced its way through the thin walls of the hut. Thetailor, full of unwonted courage, jumped up, put his clothes on inhaste, and hurried out. Then close by the hut, he saw a great blackbull and a beautiful stag, which were just preparing for a violentstruggle. They rushed at each other with such extreme rage that theground shook with their trampKng, and the air resounded withtheir cries. For a long time it was uncertain which of the two wouldgain the victory; at length the stag thrust his horns into his adver-sary's body, whereupon the bull fell to the earth with a terrific roar,and was thoroughly despatched by a few strokes from the stag.
The tailor, who had watched the fight with astonishment, wasstill standing there motionless, when the stag in full career boundedup to him, and before he could escape, caught him up on his greathorns. He had not much time to collect his thoughts, for it went ina swift race over stock and stone, mountain and valley, wood andmeadow. He held with both hands to the tops of the horns, andresigned himself to his fate. It seemed to him, however, just as if hewere flying away. At length the stag stopped in front of a wall ofrock, and gently let the tailor down. The tailor, more dead thanalive, required a longer time than that to come to himself. When he
go GfimrrCs Complete Fairy Tales
had in some degree recovered, the stag, which had remained stand-ing by him, pushed its horns with such force against a door whichwas in the rock, that it sprang open. Flames of fire shot forth, afterwhich followed a great smoke, which hid the stag from his sight.
The tailor did not know what to do, or whither to turn, in order toget out of this desert and back to human beings again. While hewas standing thus undecided, a voice sounded out of the rock,which cried to him, "Enter without fear, no evil shall befall thee."He certainly hesitated, but driven by a mysterious force, he obeyedthe voice and went through the iron-door into a large spacious hall,whose ceiling, walls and floor were made of shining polished squarestones, on each of which were cut letters which were unknown tohim. He looked at everything full of admiration, and was on thepoint of going out again, when he once more heard the voice whichsaid to him, "Step on the stone which lies in the middle of the hall,and great good fortune awaits thee."
His courage had already grown so great that he obeyed theorder. The stone began to give way under his feet, and sank slowlydown into the depths. When it was once more firm, and the tailorlooked round, he found himself in a hall which in size resembledthe former. Here, however, there was more to look at and to ad-mire. Hollow places were cut in the walls, in which stood vases oftransparent glass which were filled with colored spirit or with abluish vapor. On the floor of the hall two great glass chests stoodopposite to each other, which at once excited his curiosity. Whenhe went to one of them he saw inside it a handsome structure like acastle surroimded by farm-buildings, stables and bams, and a quan-tity of other good things. Everything was small, but exceedinglycarefully and delicately made, and seemed to be cut out by a dex-terous hand with the greatest exactitude.
He might not have turned away his eyes from the considerationof this rarity for some time, if the voice had not once more made it-self heard. It ordered him to turn round and look at the glass chestwhich was standing opposite. How his admiration increased whenhe saw therein a maiden of the greatest beautyl She lay as if asleep,and was wrapped in her long fair hair as in a precious mantle. Hereyes were closely shut, but the brightness of her complexion and aribbon which her breathing moved to and fro, left no doubt thatshe was alive.
The tailor was looking at the beauty with beating heart, whenshe suddenly opened her eyes, and started up at the sight of him injoyful terror. "Just Heavenl" cried she, "my deliverance is at handl
The Glass Coffin 91
Quick, quick, help me out of my prison; if you push back the boltof this glass coflBn, then I shall be free." The tailor obeyed withoutdelay, and she immediately raised up the glass lid, came out andhastened into the comer of the hall, where she covered herself witha large cloak. Then she seated herself on a stone, ordered the youngman to come to her, and after she had imprinted a friendly kiss onhis lips, she said, "My long-desired deliverer, kind Heaven hasguided you to me, and put an end to my sorrows. On the self-sameday when they end, shall your happiness begin. You are the hus-band chosen for me by Heaven, and you shall pass your life in un-broken joy, loved by me, and rich to overflowing in every earthlypossession. Seat yourself and Hsten to the story of my life:
"I am the daughter of a rich count. My parents died when I wasstill in my tender youth, and recommended me in their last will tomy elder brother, by whom I was brought up. We loved each otherso tenderly, and were so alike in our way of thinking and our incli-nations, that we both embraced the resolution never to marry, butto stay together to the end of our Uves. In our house there was nolack of company; neighbors and friends visited us often, and weshowed the greatest hospitality to every one. So it came to pass oneevening that a stranger came riding to our castle, and, under pre-text of not being able to get on to the next place, begged for shelterfor the night. We granted his request with ready courtesy, and heentertained us in the most agreeable manner during supper by con-versation intermingled with stories. My brother liked the strangerso much that he begged him to spend a couple of days with us, towhich, after some hesitation, he consented. We did not rise fromtable imtil late in the night, the stranger was shown to a room, andI hastened, as I was tired, to lay my limbs in my soft bed.
"Hardly had I slept for a short time, when the sound of faint anddelightful music awoke me. As I could not conceive from whence itcame, I wanted to summon my waiting-maid who slept in the nextroom, but to my astonishment I found that speech was taken awayfrom me by an imknown force. I felt as if a mountain were weigh-ing down my breast, and was imable to make the very slightestsound. In the meantime, by the Hght of my night-lamp, I saw thestranger enter my room through two doors which were fast bolted.He came to me and said, that by magic arts which were at his com-mand, he had caused the lovely music to sound in order to awakenme, and that he now forced his way through all fastenings with theintention of offering me his hand and heart. My repugnance to hismagic arts was, however, so great that I vouchsafed him no answer.
He remained for a time standing without moving, apparently withthe idea of waiting for a favorable decision, but as I continued tokeep silence, he angrily declared he would revenge himself and findmeans to punish my pride, and left the room. I passed the night inthe greatest disquietude, and only feU asleep towards morning.When I awoke, I hmried to my brother, but did not find him in hisroom, and the attendants told me that he had ridden forth with thestranger to the chase by daybreak.
"I at once suspected nothing good. I dressed myself quickly, or-dered my palfrey to be saddled, and accompanied only by one ser-vant, rode full gallop to the forest. The servant fell with his horse,and could not follow me, for the horse had broken its foot. I pur-sued my way without halting, and in a few minutes I saw thestranger coming towards me vwth a beautiful stag which he led bya cord. I asked him where he had left my brother, and how he hadcome by this stag, out of whose great eyes I saw tears flowing. In-stead of answering me, he began to laugh loudly. I fell into a greatrage at this, pulled out a pistol and discharged it at the monster;but the ball rebounded from his breast and went into my horse'shead. I fell to the ground, and the stranger muttered some wordswhich deprived me of consciousness.
"When I came to my senses again I found myself in this under-ground cave in a glass coflBn. The magician appeared once again,and said he had changed my brother into a stag, my castle wdth allthat belonged to it, diminished in size by his arts, he had shut up inthe other glass chest, and my people, who were all turned intosmoke, he had confined in glass bottles. He told me that if I wouldnow comply v^dth his wish, it was an easy thing for him to put ev-erything back in its former state, as he had nothing to do but openthe vessels, and everything would return once more to its naturalform. I answered him as little as I had done the first time. Hevanished and left me in my prison, in which a deep sleep came onme. Among the visions which passed before my eyes, that was themost comforting in which a young man came and set me free, andwhen I opened my eyes today I saw you, and beheld my dreamfulfilled. Help me to accomplish the other things which happenedin those visions. The first is that we Hft the glass chest in which mycastle is enclosed, on to that broad stone."
As soon as the stone was laden, it began to rise up on high v^dththe maiden and the young man, and mounted through the openingof the ceiling into the upper hall, from whence they then could eas-ily reach the open air. Here the maiden opened the lid, and it was
marvelous to behold how the castle, the houses, and the farm build-ings which were enclosed, stretched themselves out and grew totheir natural size with the greatest rapidity. After this, the maidenand the tailor returned to the cave beneath the earth, and had thevessels which were filled with smoke carried up by the stone. Themaiden had scarcely opened the bottles when the blue smokerushed out and changed itself into living men, in whom she recog-nized her servants and her people. Her joy was still more increasedwhen her brother, who had killed the magician in the form of abuU, came out of the forest towards them in his human form. Andon the self-same day the maiden, in accordance vidth her promise,gave her hand at the altar to the lucky tailor.
There once lived a man and his wife who had long wished for achild, but in vain. Now there was at the back of their house a littlewindow which overlooked a beautiful garden full of the finest vege-tables and flowers; but there was a high wall all round it, and noone ventmred into it, for it belonged to a witch of great might, andof whom all the world was afraid. One day when the vnfe wasstanding at the window, and looking into the garden, she saw a bedfiUed with the finest rampion; and it looked so fresh and green thatshe began to wish for some; and at length she longed for it greatly.This went on for days, and as she knew she could not get the ram-pion, she pined away, and grew pale and miserable.
Then the man was uneasy, and asked, "What is the matter, dearwife?" "Oh," answered she, "I shall die unless I can have some ofthat rampion to eat that grows in the garden at the back of ourhouse." The man, who loved her very much, thought to himself,"Rather than lose my wife I will get some rampion, cost what itwill."
So in the twilight he climbed over the wall into the witch's gar-den, plucked hastily a handful of rampion and brought it to hiswife. She made a salad of it at once, and ate of it to her heart's con-tent. But she liked it so much, and it tasted so good, that the nextday she longed for it thrice as much as she had done before; if shewas to have any rest the man must climb over the wall once more.
So he went in the twilight again; and as he was climbing back, hesaw, all at once, the witch standing before him, and was terriblyfrightened, as she cried, with angry eyes, "How dare you climbover into my garden like a thief, and steal my rampionl It shall bethe worse for youl"
"Oh," answered he, "be merciful rather than just; I have onlydone it through necessity; for my wife saw your rampion out of thewindow, and became possessed with so great a longing that shewould have died if she coidd not have had some to eat."
Then the witch said, "If it is all as you say, you may have asmuch rampion as you like, on one condition—the child that willcome into the world must be given to me. It shall go well with thechild, and I will care for it like a mother."
In his distress of mind the man promised everything; and whenthe time came when the child was bom the witch appeared, and,giving the child the name of Rapunzel (which is the same as ram-pion), she took it away with her.
Rapunzel was the most beautiful child in the world. When shewas twelve years old the witch shut her up in a tower in the midstof a wood, and it had neither steps nor door, only a small v/indowabove. When the witch wished to be let in, she would stand belowand would cry, "Rapimzel, Rapunzell Let down your hair!"
Rapunzel had beautiful long hair that shone like gold. When sheheard the voice of the v^dtch she would undo the fastening of theupper window, unbind the plaits of her hair, and let it downtwenty ells below, and the witch would chmb up by it.
After they had lived thus a few years it happened that as theKing's son was riding through the wood, he came to the tower; andas he drew near he heard a voice singing so sweetly that he stoodstill and listened. It was Rapimzel in her loneliness trying to passaway the time with sweet songs. The King's son wished to go in toher, and sought to find a door in the tower, but there was none. Sohe rode home, but the song had entered into his heart, and everyday he went into the wood and Hstened to it.
Once, as he was standing there under a tree, he saw the witchcome up, and listened while she called out, "Oh Rapunzel, Rapun-zell Let down your hair."
Then he saw how Rapunzel let down her long tresses, and howthe witch climbed up by them and went in to her, and he said tohimself, "Since that is the ladder, I will climb it, and seek my for-tune." And the next day, as soon as it began to grow dusk, he wentto the tower and cried, "Oh Rapimzel, Rapunzell Let down your
hair." And she let down her hair, and the King's son climbed up byit.
Rapunzel was greatly terrified when she saw that a man hadcome in to her, for she had never seen one before; but the King'sson began speaking so kindly to her, and told how her singing hadentered into his heart, so that he could have no peace imtil he hadseen her herself. Then Rapunzel forgot her terror, and when heasked her to take him for her husband, and she saw that he wasyoung and beautiful, she thought to herself, "I certainly hke himmuch better than old mother Gothel," and she put her hand into hishand, saying, "I would willingly go with you, but I do not knowhow I shall get out. When you come, bring each time a silken rope,and I will make a ladder, and when it is quite ready I will getdown by it out of the tower, and you shall take me away on yourhorse."
They agreed that he should come to her every evening, as the oldwoman came in the day-time. So the witch knew nothing of all thisuntil once Rapunzel said to her unwittingly, "Mother Gothel, howis it that you climb up here so slowly, and the Bang's son is with mein a moment?"
"O wicked child," cried the witch, "what is this I hearl I thoughtI had hidden you from all the world, and you have betrayed mel"
In her anger she seized Rapunzel by her beautiful hair, struckher several times with her left hand, and then grasping a pair ofshears in her right—snip, snap—the beautiful locks lay on theground. And she was so hard-hearted that she took Rapunzel andput her in a waste and desert place, where she lived in great woeand misery.
The same day on which she took Rapunzel away she went backto the tower in the evening and made fast the severed locks of hairto the window-hasp, and the King's son came and cried, "Rapimzel,Rapunzell Let down your hair."
Then she let the hair down, and the King's son climbed up, butinstead of his dearest Rapunzel he foimd the witch looking at himwith wicked, glittering eyes.
"Aha!" cried she, mocking him, "you came for your darling, butthe sweet bird sits no longer in the nest, and sings no more; the cathas got her, and will scratch out your eyes as well! Rapunzel is lostto you; you will see her no more."
The King's son was beside himself with grief, and in his agony hesprang from the tower; he escaped with life, but the thorns on
which he fell put out his eyes. Then he wandered blind through thewood, eating nothing but roots and berries, and doing nothing butlament and weep for the loss of his dearest wife.
So he wandered several years in misery untQ at last he came tothe desert place where Rapunzel lived with her twin-children thatshe had borne, a boy and a girl. At first he heard a voice that hethought he knew, and when he reached the place from which itseemed to come Rapunzel knew him, and fell on his neck andwept. And when her tears touched his eyes they became clear again,and he could see with them as well as ever.
Then he took her to his kingdom, where he was received withgreat joy, and there they lived long and happily.
The Sleeping Beauty
In times past there Hved a King and Queen, who said to eachother every day of their lives, "Would that we had a child!" andyet they had none. But it happened once that when the Queen wasbathing, there came a frog out of the water, and he squatted on theground, and said to her, "Thy wish shall be fulfilled; before a yearhas gone by, thou shalt bring a daughter into the world."
And as the frog foretold, so it happened; and the Queen bore adaughter so beautiful that the King could not contain himself forjoy, and he ordained a great feast. Not only did he bid to it his rela-tions, friends, and acquaintances, but also the wise women, tbatthey might be kind and favorable to the child. There were thirteenof them in his kingdom, but as he had only provided twelve goldenplates for them to eat from, one of them had to be left out
However, the feast was celebrated with all splendor; and as itdrew to an end, the wise women stood forward to present to thechild their wonderful gifts: one bestowed virtue, one beauty, athird riches, and so on, whatever there is in the world to wish for.And when eleven of them had said their say, in came the uninvitedthirteenth, burning to revenge herself, and without greeting or re-spect, she cried with a loud voice, "In the fifteenth year of her agethe Princess shall prick herself with a spindle and shall fall downdead." And without speaking one more word she turned away andleft the hall.
The Sleeping Beauty 97
Every one was terrified at her saying, when the twelfth came for-ward, for she had not yet bestowed her gift, and though she couldnot do away with the evil prophecy, yet she could soften it, so shesaid, *The Princess shall not die, but fall into a deep sleep for ahundred years."
Now the King, being desirous of saving his child even from thismisfortune, gave commandment that all the spindles in his kingdomshould be burnt up.
The maiden grew up, adorned with all the gifts of the wisewomen; and she was so lovely, modest, sweet, and kind and clever,that no one who saw her could help loving her.
It happened one day, she being already fifteen years old, that theKing and Queen rode abroad; and the maiden was left behindalone in the castle. She wandered about into all the nooks andcomers, and into all the chambers and parlors, as the fancy tookher, till at last she came to an old tower. She climbed the narrowwinding stair which led to a little door, with a rusty key stickingout of the lock; she turned the key, and the door opened, and therein the little room sat an old woman with a spindle, diligently spin-ning her flax.
"Good day, mother," said the Princess, "what are you doing?" "Iam spinning," answered the old woman, nodding her head. "Whatthing is that that twists round so briskly?" asked the maiden, andtaking the spindle into her hand she began to spin; but no soonerhad she touched it than the evil prophecy was fulfilled, and shepricked her finger with it. In that very moment she fell back uponthe bed that stood there, and lay in a deep sleep, and this sleep fellupon the whole castle. The King and Queen, who had returned andwere in the great hall, fell fast asleep, and with them the wholecourt. The horses in their stalls, the dogs in the yard, the pigeons onthe roof, the flies on the wall, the very fire that flickered on thehearth, became still, and slept like the rest; and the meat on thespit ceased roasting, and the cook, who was going to puU the scul-Hon's hair for some mistake he had made, let him go, and went tosleep. And the wind ceased, and not a leaf fell from the trees aboutthe castle.
Then round about that place there grew a hedge of thornsthicker every year, until at last the whole castle was hidden fromview, and nothing of it could be seen but the vane on the roof. Anda rumor went abroad in aU that country of the beautiful sleepingRosamond, for so was the Princess called; and from time to timemany Kings* sons came and tried to force their way through the
hedge; but it was impossible for them to do so, for the thorns heldfast together like strong hands, and the young men were caught bythem, and not being able to get free, there died a lamentable death.
Many a long year afterwards there came a King's son into thatcountry, and heard an old man tell how there should be a castlestanding behind the hedge of thorns, and that there a beautifulenchanted Princess named Rosamond had slept for a hundredyears, and with her the King and Queen, and the whole court. Theold man had been told by his grandfather that many Kings' sonshad sought to pass the thorn-hedge, but had been caught andpierced by the thorns, and had died a miserable death. Then saidthe young man, "Nevertheless, I do not fear to try; I shall winthrough and see the lovely Rosamond." The good old msm tried todissuade him, but he would not listen to his words.
For now the hundred years were at an end, and the day hadcome when Rosamond should be awakened. When the Prince drewnear the hedge of thorns, it was changed into a hedge of beautifullarge flowers, which parted and bent aside to let him pass, and thenclosed behind him in a thick hedge. When he reached the castle-yard, he saw the horses and brindled hunting-dogs lying asleep,and on the roof the pigeons were sitting with their heads undertheir wings. And when he came indoors, the flies on the wall wereasleep, the cook in the Idtchen had his hand upHfted to strike thescuUion, and the kitchenmaid had the black fowl on her lap readyto pluck. Then he mounted higher, and saw in the hall the wholecourt lying asleep, and above them, on their thrones, slept the Kingand the Queen. And still he went farther, and all was so quiet thathe could hear his own breathing; and at last he came to the tower,and went up the winding stair, and opened the door of the littleroom where Rosamond lay.
And when he saw her looking so lovely in her sleep, he could notturn away his eyes; and presently he stooped and Idssed her, andshe awaked, and opened her eyes, and looked very kindly on him.And she rose, and they went forth together, the King and theQueen and whole court waked up, and gazed on each other withgreat eyes of wonderment. And the horses in the yard got up andshook themselves, the hounds sprang up and wagged their tails, thepigeons on the roof drew their heads from under their wings,looked round, and flew into the field, the flies on the wall crept on aHttle farther, the kitchen fire leapt up and blazed, and cooked themeat, the joint on the spit began to roast, the cook gave the scullion
Old Binhrank 99
such a box on the ear that he roared out, and the maid went onplucking the fowl.
Then the wedding of the Prince and Rosamond was held with allsplendor, and they lived very happily together untQ their lives' end.
Thebe was once upon a time a King who had a daughter, and hecaused a glass-mountain to be made, and said that whosoever couldcross to the other side of it without falling should have his daughterto wife. Then there was one who loved the King's daughter, and heasked the King if he might have her. Tes,** said the King; "if youcan cross the mountain without falling, you shall have her." Andthe Princess said she would go over it with him, and would holdhim if he were about to fall.
So they set out together to go over it, and when they were half-way up the Princess sHpped and fell, and the glass-mountainopened and shut her up inside it, and her betrothed could not seewhere she had gone, for the mountain closed unmediately. Then hewept and lamented much, and the King was miserable too, and hadthe mountain broken open where she had been lost, and thought hewould be able to get her out again, but they could not find theplace into which she had fallen.
Meantime the King's daughter had fallen quite deep down intothe earth into a great cave. An old fellow with a very long graybeard came to meet her, and told her that if she would be his ser-vant and do everything he bade her, she might live; if not, hewould kill her. So she did all he bade her. In the mornings he tookhis ladder out of his pocket, and set it up against the moimtain andclimbed to the top by its help, and then he drew up the ladderafter him. The Princess had to cook his dinner, make his bed, anddo all his work, and when he came home again he always broughtwith him a heap of gold and silver. When she had lived with himfor many years, and had grown quite old, he called her MotherMansrot, and she had to call him Old Rinkrank. Then once whenhe was out, and she had made his bed and washed his dishes, sheshut the doors and windows aU fast, and there was one little windowthrough which the light shone in, and this she left open.
When Old Rinkrank came home, he knocked at his door, andcried, "Mother Mansrot, open the door for me." 'TSfo," said she,"Old Rinkrank, I will not open the door for you." Then he said,
"Here stand I, poor Rinkrank,On my seventeen long shanks.On my weary, worn-out foot,Wash my dishes. Mother Mansrot."
"l have washed your dishes already," said she. Then again hesaid,
"Here stand I, poor Rinkrank,On my seventeen long shanks.On my weary, worn-out foot,Make me my bed. Mother Mansrot."
*1 have made your bed already," said she. Then again he said,
"Here stand I, poor Rinkrank,On my seventeen long shanks.On my weary, worn-out foot.Open the door. Mother Mansrot."
Then he ran all round his house, and saw that the little windowwas open, and thought, "I will look in and see what she can beabout, and why she will not open the door for me." He tried topeep in, but could not get his head through because of his longbeard. So he first put his beard through the open window, but justas he had got it through. Mother Mansrot came by and pulled thewindow down with a cord which she had tied to it, and his beardwas shut fast in it. Then he began to cry most piteously, for it hurthim very much, and to entreat her to release him again. But shesaid not untQ he gave her the ladder with which he ascended themountain. Then, whether he woiild or not, he had to tell herwhere the ladder was. And she fastened a very long ribbon to thewindow, and then she set up the ladder, and ascended the moun-tain, and when she was at the top of it she opened the window.
She went to her father, and told him all that had happened toher. The King rejoiced greatly, and her betrothed was still there,and they went and dug up the mountain, and found Old Rinkrankinside it with all his gold and silver. Then the King had OldRinkrank put to death, and took all his gold and silver. The Piin-cess married her betrothed, and lived right happily in great luxuryand joy.
Near a great forest there lived a poor woodcutter and his wife andhis two children; the boy's name was Hansel and the girl's Gretel.They had very little to bite or to sup, and once, when there was^eat dearth in the land, the man could not even gain the dailybread.
As he lay in bed one night thinking of this, and tmiiing and toss-ing, he sighed heavily, and said to his wife, *What will become ofus? We cannot even feed our children; there is nothing left for our-selves."
"I will tell you what, husband," answered the wife; "we will takethe children early in the morning into the forest, where it isthickest; we will make them a fire, and we will give each of them apiece of bread, then we will go to our work and leave them alone;they will never find the way home again, and we shall be quit ofthem."
"No, wife," said the man, "1 cannot do that; I cannot find in myheart to take my children into the forest and to leave them therealone; the wild animals would soon come and devour them."
"O you fool," said she, "then we will aU foin: starve; you had bet-ter get the cofifins ready"—and she left him no peace until he con-sented.
"But I really pity the poor children," said the man.
The two children had not been able to sleep for hunger, and hadheard what their step-mother had said to their father. Gretel weptbitterly, and said to Hansel, "It is all over with us." "Do be quiet,Gretel," said Hansel, "and do not fret. I will manage something."
And when the parents had gone to sleep he got up, put on his lit-tle coat, opened the back door, and slipped out. The moon wasshining brightly, and the white flints that lay in front of the houseglistened like pieces of silver. Hansel stooped and filled the littlepocket of his coat as full as it would hold. Then he went backagain, and said to Gretel, "Be easy, dear little sister, and go to sleepquietly; God wiU not forsake us," and laid himself down again inhis bed.
When the day was breaking, and before the sim had risen, the
wife came and awakened the two children, saying, "Get up, youlazy bones; we are going into the forest to cut wood."
Then she gave each of them a piece of bread, and said, "That isfor dinner, and you must not eat it before then, for you will get nomore."
Gretel carried the bread under her apron, for Hansel had hispockets full of the flints. Then they set off all together on their wayto the forest. When they had gone a little way Hansel stood stilland looked back towards the house, and this he did again andagain, till his father said to him, "Hansel, what are you looking at?Take care not to forget your legs."
"O father," said Hansel, "I am looking at my Httle white kitten,who is sitting up on the roof to bid me good-bye."
"You young fool," said the woman, "that is not your Idtten, butthe sunshine on the chimney pot."
Of course Hansel had not been looking at his kitten, but hadbeen taking every now and then a flint from his pocket and drop-ping it on the road.
When they reached the middle of the forest the father told thechildren to collect wood to make a fire to keep them warm; andHansel and Gretel gathered brushwood enough for a little moun-tain; and it was set on fire, and when the flame was burning quitehigh the v^e said, "Now He dowm by the fire and rest yourselves,you children, and we vwU go and cut wood; and when we are readywe will come and fetch you."
So Hansel and Gretel sat by the fire, and at noon they each atetheir pieces of bread. They thought their father was in the wood allthe time, as they seemed to hear the strokes of the axe, but really itwas only a dry branch hanging to a withered tree that the windmoved to and fro. So when they had stayed there a long time theireyelids closed v^dth weariness, and they fell fast asleep.
When at last they woke it was night, and Gretel began to cry,and said, "How shall we ever get out of this wood?" But Hanselcomforted her, saying, "Wait a little while longer, imtil the moonrises, and then we can easily find the way home."
And when the full moon got up Hansel took his little sister by thehand, and followed the way where the flint stones shone like silver,and showed them the road. They walked on the whole nightthrough, and at the break of day they came to their father s house.They knocked at the door, and when the wife opened it and saw itwas Hansel and Gretel she said, "You naughty children, why didyou sleep so long in the wood? We thought you were never coming
home againr But the father was glad, for it had gone to his heart toleave them both in the woods alone.
Not very long after that there was again great scarcity in thoseparts, and the children heard their mother say at night in bed totheir father, "Everything is finished up; we have only half a loaf,and after that the tale comes to an end. The children must be oflF;we will take them farther into the wood this time, so that they shallnot be able to find the way back again; there is no other way tomanage."
The man felt sad at heart, and he thought, *Tt would be better toshare one's last morsel with one's children." But the wife would lis-ten to nothing that he said, but scolded and reproached him. Hewho says A must say B too, and when a man has given in once hehas to do it a second time.
But the children were not asleep, and had heard all the talk.When the parents had gone to sleep Hansel got up to go out andget more flint stones, as he did before, but the wife had locked thedoor, and Hansel could not get out; but he comforted his littlesister, and said, "Don't cry, Gretel, and go to sleep quietly, andGod wiU help us."
Early the next morning the wife came and pulled the childrenout of bed. She gave them each a little piece of bread—less than be-fore; and on the way to the wood Hansel crumbled the bread in hispocket, and often stopped to throw a crumb on the ground.
"Hansel, what are you stopping behind and staring for?" said thefather.
*1 am looking at my little pigeon sitting on the roof, to say good-bye to me," answered Hansel.
"You fool," said the wife, "that is no pigeon, but the morning srmshining on the chimney pots."
Hansel went on as before, and strewed bread crumbs all alongthe road.
The woman led the children far into the wood, where they hadnever been before in aU their lives. And agtiin there was a large firemade, and the mother said, "Sit still there, you children, and whenyou are tired you can go to sleep; we are going into the forest tocut wood, and in the evening, when we are ready to go home wewill come and fetch you."
So when noon came Gretel shared her bread with Hansel, whohad strewed his along the road. Then they went to sleep, and theevening passed, and no one came for the poor children. When theyawoke it was dark night, and Hansel comforted his Httle sister, and
said, "Wait a little, Gretel, until the moon gets up, then we shall beable to see the way home by the crumbs of bread that I have scat-tered along it."
So when the moon rose they got up, but they could jBnd nocrumbs of bread, for the birds of the woods and of the fields hadcome and picked them up. Hansel thought they might find the wayall the same, but they could not. They went on all that night, andthe next day from the morning until the evening, but they could notfind the way out of the wood, and they were very hungry, for theyhad nothing to eat but the few berries they could pick up. Andwhen they were so tired that they could no longer drag themselvesalong, they lay down under a tree and fell asleep.
It was now the third morning since they had left their father shouse. They were always trying to get back to it, but instead of thatthey only found themselves farther in the wood, and if help had notsoon come they would have starved. About noon they saw a prettysnow-white bird sitting on a bough, and singing so sweetly thatthey stopped to listen. And when he had finished the bird spreadhis wings and flew before them, and they followed after him untilthey came to a little house, and the bird perched on the roof, andwhen they came nearer they saw that the house was built of bread,and roofed with cakes, and the window was of transparent sugar.
"We will have some of this," said Hansel, "and make a fine meal.I will eat a piece of the roof, Gretel, and you can have some of thewindow—that will taste sweet."
So Hansel reached up and broke off a bit of the roof, just to seehow it tasted, and Gretel stood by the window and gnawed at it.Then they heard a thin voice call out from inside,
"Nibble, nibble, like a mouse,Who is nibbling at my house?"
And the children answered,
"Never mind.It is the wind"
And they went on eating, never disturbing themselves. Hansel, whofound that the roof tasted very nice, took down a great piece of it,and Gretel pulled out a large round window-pane, and sat her downand began upon it. Then the door opened, and an aged womancame out, leaning upon a crutch. Hansel and Gretel felt very fright-ened, and let fall what they had in dieir hands. The old woman,however, nodded her head, and said, "Ah, my dear children, how
Hansel and Gretel 105
come you here? You must come indoors and stay with me, you willbe no trouble."
So she took them each by the hand, and led them into her littlehouse. And there they found a good meal laid out, of milk andpancakes, with sugar, apples, and nuts. After that she showed themtwo little white beds, and Hansel and Gretel laid themselves downon them, and thought they were in heaven.
The old woman, although her behavior was so kind, was awicked witch, who lay in wait for children, and had built the littlehouse on purpose to entice them. When they were once inside sheused to kill them, cook them, and eat them, and then it was a feast-day with her. The witch's eyes were red, and she could not see veryfar, but she had a keen scent, hke the beasts, and knew very wellwhen human creatures were near. When she knew that Hansel andGretel were coming, she gave a spiteful laugh, and said triimi-phantly, "I have them, and they shall not escape mel"
Early in the morning, before the children were awake, she got upto look at them, and as they lay sleeping so peacefully with roundrosy cheeks, she said to herself, "What a fine feast I shall havel"
Then she grasped Hansel with her withered hand, and led himinto a little stable, and shut him up behind a grating; and call andscream as he might, it was no good. Then she went back to Greteland shook her, crying, "Get up, lazy bones; fetch water, and cooksomething nice for your brother; he is outside in the stable, andmust be fattened up. And when he is fat enough I will eat him."
Gretel began to weep bitterly, but it was no use, she had to dowhat the wicked witch bade her.
And so the best Idnd of victuals was cooked for poor Hansel,while Gretel got nothing but crab-shells. Each morning the oldwoman visited the little stable, and cried, "Hansel, stretch out yoiu:finger, that I may tell if you will soon be fat enough."
Hansel, however, used to hold out a Httle bone, and the oldwoman, who had weak eyes, could not see what it was, and suppos-ing it to be Hansel's finger, wondered very much that it was notgetting fatter. When four weeks had passed and Hansel seemed toremain so thin, she lost patience and could wait no longer.
"Now then, Gretel," cried she to the little girl; "be quick anddraw water; be Hansel fat or be he lean, tomorrow I must kill andcook him."
Oh what a grief for the poor little sister to have to fetch water,and how the tears flowed down over her cheeks 1 "Dear God, pray
help us!" cried she; "if we had been devoured by wild beasts in thewood at least we should have died together."
"Spare me your lamentations," said the old woman; "they are ofno avail."
Early next morning Gretel had to get up, make the fire, and fillthe kettle. "First we will do the baking," said the old woman; "Ihave heated the oven aheady, and kneaded the dough."
She pushed poor Gretel towards the oven, out of which theflames were already shining. "Creep in," said the witch, "and see ifit is properly hot, so that the bread may be baked."
And Gretel once in, she meant to shut the door upon her and lether be baked, and then she would have eaten her. But Gretel per-ceived her intention, and said, "1 don't know how to do it; howshall I get in?"
"Stupid goose," said the old woman, "the opening is big enough,do you see? I could get in myself!" and she stooped down and puther head in the oven's mouth. Then Gretel gave her a push, so thatshe went in farther, and she shut the iron door upon her, and putup the bar. Oh how frightfully she howled! But Gretel ran away,and left the wicked witch to bum miserably. Gretel went straight toHansel, opened the stable-door, and cried, "Hansel, we are free!the old witch is dead!"
Then out flew Hansel like a bird from its cage as soon as the dooris opened. How rejoiced they both were! How they fell each on theother's neck and danced about, and kissed each other! And as theyhad nothing more to fear they went over all the old witch's house,and in every comer there stood chests of pearls and precious stones.
"This is something better than flint stones," said Hansel, as hefilled his pockets; and Gretel, thinking she also would like to carrysomething home with her, filled her apron full.
"Now, away we go," said Hansel—"if we only can get out of thewitch's wood."
When they had joiuneyed a few hours they came to a great pieceof water. "We can never get across this," said Hansel, "I see nostepping-stones and no bridge." "And there is no boat either," saidGretel; "but here comes a white duck; if I ask her she will help usover." So she cried,
"Duck, duck, here we stand.Hansel and Gretel, on the land.Stepping-stones and bridge we lack.Carry us over on your nice white back"
The Straw, the Coal, and the Bean 107
And the duck came accordingly, and Hansel got upon her andtold his sister to come too. "No," answered Gretel, "that would betoo hard upon the duck; we can go separately, one after the other."
And that was how it was managed, and after that they went onhappily, until they came to the wood, and the way grew more andmore familiar, till at last they saw in the distance their father'shouse. Then they ran till they came up to it, rushed in at the door,and fell on their father's neck. The man had not had a quiet hoursince he left his children in the wood; but the wife was dead. Andwhen Gretel opened her apron the pearls and precious stones werescattered all over the room, and Hansel took one handful after an-other out of his pocket. Then was all care at an end, and they livedin great joy together.
Sing every one.
My story is done.
And look! round the house
There runs a little mouse.
He that can catch her before she scampers in
May make himself a fur-cap out of her skin.
The Straw, the Coal, and the Bean
There lived in a certain village a poor old woman who had col-lected a mess of beans, and was going to cook them. So she made afire on her hearth, and, in order to make it bmm better, she put in ahandful of straw. When the beans began to bubble in the pot, one ofthem fell out and lay, never noticed, near a straw which was alreadythere; soon a red-hot coal jumped out of the fire and joined thepair.
The straw began first, and said, "Dear friends, how do you comehere?" The coal answered, "I jumped out of the fire by great goodluck, or I should certainly have met with my death. I should havebeen burned to ashes." The bean said, "I too have come out of itwith a whole skin, but if the old woman had kept me in the pot Ishould have been cooked into a soft mass like my comrades."
"Nor should I have met with a better fate," said the straw; "theold woman has turned my brothers into fire and smoke, sixty of
them she took up at once and deprived of life. Very luckily I man-aged to slip through her fingers."
*What had we better do now?" said the coal. "1 think," answeredthe bean, "that as we have been so lucky as to escape with ourHves, we will join in good fellowship together, and, lest any morebad fortune should happen to us here, we vnll go abroad into for-eign lands."
The proposal pleased the two others, and forthwith they startedon their travels. Soon they came to a little brook, and as there wasno stepping-stone, and no bridge, they could not tell how they wereto get to the other side. The straw was struck with a good idea, andsaid, "I will lay myself across, so that you can go over me as if Iwere a bridgel"
So the straw stretched himself from one bank to the other, andthe coal, who was of an ardent nature, quickly trotted up to go overthe new-made bridge. When, however, she reached the middle, andheard the water rushing past beneath her, she was struck with ter-ror, and stopped, and could get no farther. So the straw began toget burnt, broke in two pieces, and fell in the brook; and the coalslipped down, hissing as she touched the water, and gave up theghost.
The bean, who had prudently remained behind on the bank,could not help laughing at the sight, and not being able to containherself, went on laughing so excessively that she burst. And nowwould she certainly have been undone for ever, i£ a tailor on histravels had not by good luck stopped to rest himself by the brook.As he had a compassionate heart, he took out needle and threadand stitched her together again. The bean thanked him in the mostelegant manner, but as he had sewn her up with black stitches, allbeans since then have a black seam.
The Death of the Hen
Once on a time the cock and the hen went to the nut mountain,and they agreed beforehand that whichever of them should find anut was to divide it with the other. Now the hen found a great bignut, but said nothing about it, and was going to eat it all alone, butthe kernel was such a fat one that she could not swallow it down,
The Death of the Hen 109
and it stuck in her throat, so that she was afraid she should choke.
"Cock!" cried she, "run as fast as you can and fetch me somewater, or I shall choke!"
So the cock ran as fast as he could to the brook, and said, "Brook,give me some water, the hen is up yonder choking with a big nutstuck in her throat." But the brook answered, 'Tirst run to thebride and ask her for some red silk."
So the cock ran to the bride and said, "Bride, give me some redsilk; the brook wants me to give him some red silk; I want him togive me some water, for the hen lies yonder choking with a big nutstuck in her throat."
But the bride answered, "First go and fetch me my garland thathangs on a wlUow." And the cock ran to the willow and puUed thegarland from the bough and brought it to the bride, and the bridegave him red silk, and he brought it to the brook, and the brookgave him water. So then the cock brought the water to the hen, butalas, it was too late; the hen had choked in the meanwhile, and laythere dead. And the cock was so grieved that he cried aloud, andaU the beasts came and lamented for the hen; and six mice built alittle wagon on which to carry the poor hen to her grave, and whenit was ready they harnessed themselves to it, and the cock drove.
On the way they met the fox. "Halloa, cock," cried he, "whereare you oflF to?" "To bury my hen," answered the cock. "Can Icome too?" said the fox. "Yes, if you follow behind," said the cock.
So the fox followed behind and he was soon joined by the wolf,the bear, the stag, the lion, and all the beasts in the wood. And theprocession went on till they came to a brook.
"How shall we get over?" said the cock. Now in the brook therewas a straw, and he said, "I will lay myself across, so that you maypass over on me." But when the six mice had got upon this bridge,the straw slipped and fell into the water and they all tumbled in andwere drowned. So they were as badly off as ever, when a coal cameup and said he would lay himself across and they might pass overhim; but no sooner had he touched the water than he hissed, wentout, and was dead. A stone, seeing this, was touched with pity, and,wishing to help the cock, he laid himself across the stream. And thecock drew the wagon with the dead hen in it safely to the otherside, and then began to draw the others who followed behindacross too, but it was too much for him, the wagon turned over, andall tumbled into the water one on the top of another, and weredrowned.
So the cock was left all alone with the dead hen, and he dug a
grave and laid her in it, and he raised a mound above her, and sathimself down and lamented so sore that at last he died. And so theywere all dead together.
The Rabbit's Bride
There was once a woman who lived with her daughter in a beauti-ful cabbage-garden; and there came a rabbit and ate up all the cab-bages. At last said the woman to her daughter, "Go into the gar-den, and drive out the rabbit."
"Shoo! shoo!" said the maiden; "don't eat up all our cabbages,little rabbit!" "Come, maiden," said the rabbit, "sit on my tail andgo with me to my rabbit-hutch." But the maiden would not.
Another day, back came the rabbit, and ate away at the cab-bages, until the woman said to her daughter, "Go into the garden,and drive away the rabbit."
"Shoo! shoo!" said the maiden; "don't eat up all our cabbages,little rabbit!" "Come, maiden," said the rabbit, "sit on my tail andgo with me to my rabbit-hutch." But the maiden would not.
Again, a third time back came the rabbit, and ate away at thecabbages, until the woman said to her daughter, "Go into the gar-den, and drive away the rabbit."
"Shoo! shoo!" said the maiden; "don't eat up all our cabbages,little rabbit!" "Come, maiden," said the rabbit, "sit on my tail andgo with me to my rabbit-hutch." And then the girl seated herself onthe rabbit's tail, and the rabbit took her to his hutch.
"Now," said he, "set to work and cook some bran and cabbage; Iam going to bid the wedding guests." And soon they were all col-lected. Would you like to know who they were? Well, I can onlytell you what was told to me. All the hares came, and the crowwho was to be the parson to marry them, and the fox for the clerk,and the altar was under the rainbow. But the maiden was sad, be-cause she was so lonely.
"Get up! get up!" said the rabbit, "the wedding folk are allmerry." But the bride wept and said nothing, and the rabbit wentaway, but very soon came back again. "Get up! get up!" said he,"the weddinc folk are waiting." But the bride said nothing, and therabbit went away.
Then she made a figure of straw, and dressed it in her ownclothes, and gave it a red mouth, and set it to watch the kettle ofbran, and then she went home to her mother. Back again came therabbit, saying, "Get upl get upl" and he went up and hit the strawfigmre on the head, so that it tumbled down.
And the rabbit thought that he had killed his bride, and he wentaway and was very sad.
The Hare and the Hedgehog
This story, my dear young folks, seems to be false, but it really istrue, for my grandfather, when relating it always used to say, "Itmust be true, my son, or else no one could tell it to you." The storyis as follows.
One Sunday morning about harvest time, just as the buckwheatwas in bloom, the sim was shining brightly in heaven, the east windwas blowing warmly over the stubble-fields, the larks were singingin the air, the bees buzzing among the buckwheat, the people wereall going in their Sunday clothes to chvuch, and all creatures werehappy, and the hedgehog was happy too.
The hedgehog, however, was standing by his door with his armsakimbo, enjoying the morning breezes, and slowly trilling a littlesong to himself, which was neither better nor worse than the songswhich hedgehogs are in the habit of singing on a blessed Sundaymorning. While he was thus singing half aloud to himself, it sud-denly occurred to him that while his wife was washing and dryingthe children, he might very well take a walk into the field, and seehow his turnips were going on. The turnips were, in fact, close be-side his house, and he and his family were accustomed to eat them,for which reason he looked upon them as his own. No sooner saidthan done. The hedgehog shut the house-door behind him, andtook the path to the field. He had not gone very far from home, andwas just turning round the sloe-bush which stands there outside thefield, to go up into the turnip-field, when he observed the hare, whohad gone out on business of the same kind, namely, to visit hiscabbages.
When the hedgehog caught sight of the hare, he bade him afriendly good morning. But the hare, who was in his own way a dis-
tingmshed gentleman, and frightfully haughty, did not return thehedgehog's greeting, but said to him, assimiing at the same time avery contemptuous manner, "How do you happen to be runningabout here in the field so early in the morning?" "1 am taking awalk," said the hedgehog. "A walk!" said the hare, with a smile. "Itseems to me that you might use your legs for a better purpose."This answer made the hedgehog furiously angry, for he can bearanything but an attack on his legs, just because they are crooked bynature.
So now the hedgehog said to the hare, "You seem to imaginethat you can do more with your legs than I with mine." "That isjust what I do think," said the hare. "That can be put to the test,"said the hedgehog. "I wager that if we run a race, I will outstripyou." "That is ridiculousi You with your short legs!" said the hare."But for my part I am willing, if you have such a monstrous fancyfor it. What shall we wager?" "A golden louis-d'or and a bottle ofbrandy," said the hedgehog. "Done," said the hare. "Shalce handson it, and then it may as well come off at once." "Nay," said thehedgehog, "there is no such great hurryl I am still fasting, I will gohome first, and have a little breakfast. In half an hour I will beback again at this place."
Hereupon the hedgehog departed, for the hare was quitesatisfied with this. On his way the hedgehog thought to himself,"The hare relies on his long legs, but I will contrive to get the betterof him. He may be a great man, but he is a very silly fellow, and heshall pay for what he has said." So when the hedgehog reachedhome, he said to his wife, "Wife, dress yourself quickly, you mustgo out to the field with me." "What is going on, then?" said hiswife. "I have made a wager with the hare, for a gold loms-d'or anda bottle of brandy. I am to nm a race with him, and you must bepresent." "Good heavens, husband," the wife now cried, "are youout of your mind? Have you completely lost your wits? What canmake you want to run a race with the hare?" "Hold your tongue,woman," said the hedgehog, "that is my affair. Don't begin to dis-cuss things which are matters for men. Be off, dress, and come withme." What could the hedgehog's wife do? She was forced to obeyhim, whether she liked it or not.
So when they had set out on their way together, the hedgehogsaid to his wife, "Now pay attention to what I am going to i>ay.Look you, I will make the long field our race-course. The hare shallrun in one furrow, and I in another, and we will begin to nm fromthe top. Now all that you have to do is to place yourself here below
The Hare and the Hedgehog 113
in the furrow, and when the hare arrives at the end of the furrowon the other side of you, you must cry out to him, 'I am here al-readyl'"
Then they reached the field, and the hedgehog showed his wifeher place, and then walked up the field. When he reached the top,the hare was aheady there. "Shall we start?" said the hare. "Cer-tainly," said the hedgehog. "Then both at once." So saying, eachplaced himself in his own furrow. The hare coimted, "Once, twice,thrice, and away!" and went off like a whirlwind down the field.The hedgehog, however, only ran about three paces, and then hestooped down in the furrow, and stayed quietly where he was.
When the hare therefore arrived in full career at the lower end ofthe field, the hedgehog's wife met him with the cry, "I am here al-readyl" The hare was shocked and wondered not a Httle. Hethought it was the hedgehog himself who was calling to him, forthe hedgehog's wife looked just like her husband. The hare, how-ever, thought to himself, "That has not been done fairly," andcried, "It must be run again, let us have it again." Once more hewent off like the wind in a storm, so that he seemed to fly. But thehedgehog's wife stayed quietly in her place. So when the harereached the top of the field, the hedgehog himseff cried out to him,"I am here already." The hare, however, quite beside himself withanger, cried, "It must be run again, we must have it again." "Allright," answered the hedgehog, "for my part we'll run as often asyou choose." So the hare ran seventy-three times more, and thehedgehog always held out against him, and every time the harereached either the top or the bottom, either the hedgehog or hiswife said, "1 am here already."
At the seventy-fourth time, however, the hare could no longerreach the end. In the middle of the field he fell to the ground, theblood streamed out of his mouth, and he lay dead on the spot. Butthe hedgehog took the louis-d'or which he had won and the bottleof brandy, called his wife out of the furrow, and both went hometogether in great deHght, and if they are not dead, they are livingthere still.
This is how it happened that the hedgehog made the hare runraces with him on the Buxtehude heath till he died, and since thattime no hare has ever had any fancy for nmning races with aBuxtehude hedgehog.
The moral of this story, however, is, firstly, that no one, howevergreat he may be, should permit himseff to jest at any one beneathhim, even ff he be only a hedgehog. And, secondly, it teaches, that
when a man marries, he should take a wife in his own position, wholooks just as he himself looks. So whosoever is a hedgehog let himsee to it that his wife is a hedgehog also, and so forth.
The Dog and the Sparrow
There was once a sheep-dog whose master behaved ill to him anddid not give him enough to eat, and when for hunger he could bearit no longer, he left his service very sadly. In the street he was metby a sparrow, who said, "Dog, my brother, why are you so sad?"
And the dog answered, "I am hungry and have nothing to eat."
Then said the sparrow, "Dear brother, come with me into thetown; I will give you plenty."
Then they went together into the town, and soon they came to abutcher's stall, and the sparrow said to the dog, "Stay here while Ireach you down a piece of meat," and he perched on the stall,looked round to see that no one noticed him, and packed, pulled,and dragged so long at a piece that lay near the edge of the boardthat at last it slid to the ground. The dog picked it up, ran with itinto a comer, and ate it up. Then said the sparrow, "Now comev^dth me to another stall, and I will get you another piece, so thatyour hunger may be satisfied."
When the dog had devoured a second piece the sparrow asked,"Dog, my brother, are you satisfied now?" "Yes, as to meat, I am,"answered he, "but I have had no bread."
Then said the sparrow, "That also shall you have; come withme." And he led him to a baker's stall and pecked at a few httlerolls imtil they fell to the ground, and as the dog still wanted more,they went to another stall farther on and got more bread.
When that was done the sparrow said, "Dog, my brother, are yousatisfied yet?" "Yes," answered he, "and now we will walk a littleoutside the town."
And they went together along the high road. It was warmweather, and when they had gone a Httle way the dog said, "1 amtired, and would like to go to sleep." "Well, do so," said the spar-row; "in the meanwhile I will sit near on a bough."
The dog laid himself in the road and fell fast asleep, and as helay there a wagoner came up with a wagon and three horses, laden
The Dog and the Sparrow 115
with two casks of wine. The sparrow, seeing that he was not goingto turn aside but kept in the beaten track, just where the dog lay,cried out, "Wagoner, take care, or you shall suffer for iti"
But the wagoner, muttering, "What harm can you do to me?"cracked his whip and drove his wagon over the dog, and he wascrushed to death by the wheels. Then the sparrow cried, "You havekilled the dog my brother, and it shall cost you horses and cart!""OhI horses and cart!" said the wagoner, "what harm can you dome, I should like to know?" and drove on.
The sparrow crept under the covering of the wagon and peckedat the bung-hole of one of the casks until the cork came out, and allthe wine ran out without the wagoner noticing. After a while, look-ing round, he saw that something dripped from the wagon, and onexamining the casks he found that one of them was empty, and hecried out, "I am a ruined man!"
"Not ruined enough yet!" said the sparrow, and flying to one ofthe horses he perched on his head and pecked at his eyes. Whenthe wagoner saw that he took out his axe to hit the sparrow, who atthat moment flew aloft, and the wagoner, missing him, struck thehorse on the head, so that he fell down dead. "Oh, I am a ruinedman!" cried he.
"Not ruined enough yet!" said the sparrow, and as the wagonerdrove on with the two horses that were left, the sparrow creptagain under the wagon-covering and pecked the cork out of thesecond cask, so that aU the wine leaked out. When the wagoner be-came aware of it, he cried out again, "Oh! I am a ruined man!"
But the sparrow answered, "Not rmned enough yet!" and perchedon the second horse's head and began pecking at his eyes. Back ranthe wagoner and raised his axe to strike, but the sparrow flying aloft,the stroke fell on the horse, so that he was killed. "Oh! I am a ruinedman!" cried the wagoner.
"Not ruined enough yet!" said the sparrow, and perching on thethird horse began pecking at his eyes. The wagoner struck out inhis anger at the sparrow without taking aim, and missing him, helaid his third horse dead. "Oh! I am a ruined man!" he cried.
"Not ruined enough yet!" answered the sparrow, flying off; "Iwill see to that at home."
So the wagoner had to leave his wagon standing, and went homefull of rage. "Oh!" said he to his wife, "what ill-luck I have had!The wine is spilt, and the horses are all three dead."
"Oh husband!" answered she, "such a terrible bird has come tothis house; he has brought with him all the birds of the air, and
there they are in the midst of our wheat, devouring it." And helooked and there were thousands upon thousands of birds sitting onthe ground, having eaten up all the wheat, and the sparrow in themidst, and the wagoner cried, "Oh! I am a ruined man!"
"Not ruined enough yet!" answered the sparrow. "Wagoner, itshall cost you your life!" and he flew away.
Now the wagoner, having lost everything he possessed, went in-doors and sat down, angry and miserable, behind the stove. Thesparrow was perched outside on the window-sill, and cried, "Wag-oner, it shall cost you your Ufe!"
Then the wagoner seized his axe and threw it at the sparrow, butit broke the window sash in two and did not touch the sparrow,who now hopped inside, perched on the stove, and cried, "Wag-oner, it shall cost you your Ufe!" and he, mad and blind with rage,beat in the stove, and as the sparrow flew from one spot to another,hacked everything in pieces—furniture, looking-glasses, benches,table, and the very walls of his house—and yet did not touch thesparrow.
At last he caught and held him in his hand.
"Now," said his v^dfe, "shall I not kill him?" "No!" cried he,"that were too easy a death; I wiU swallow him," and as the birdwas fluttering in the man's mouth, it stretched out its head, saying,"Wagoner, it shall cost you your life!"
Then the wagoner reached the axe to his wife saying, "Wife,strike me this bird dead."
The wife struck, but missed her aim, and the blow fell on thewagoner's head, and he dropped down dead.
But the sparrow flew over the hills and away.
There was once a peasant who owned a faithful dog called Sultan,now grown so old that he had lost aU his teeth, and could lay holdof nothing. One day the man was standing at the door of his housewith his wife, and he said, "I shall Idll old Sultan tomorrow; he isof no good any longer."
His wife felt sorry for the poor dog, and answered, "He has
Old Sultan 117
served us for so many years, and has kept with us so faithfully; hedeserves food and shelter in his old age."
"Dear me, you do not seem to understand the matter," said thehusband; "he has never a tooth, and no thief would mind him inthe least, so I do not see why he should not be made away with. Ifhe has served us well, we have given him plenty of good food."
The poor dog, who was lying stretched out in the sun not far off,heard all they said, and was very sad to think that the next daywould be his last. He bethought him of his great friend the wolf,and slipped out in the evening to the wood to see him, and relatedto him the fate that was awaiting him.
"Listen to me, old fellow," said the wolf; "he of good courage, Iwill help you in your need. I have thought of a way. Early tomor-row morning your master is going hay-making with his wife, andthey will take their child with them, so that no one will be left athome. They will be sure to lay the child in the shade behind thehedge while they are at work; you must He by its side, just as if youwere watching it. Then I will come out of the wood and steal awaythe child and you must rush after me, as if to save it from me. ThenI must let it faU, and you must bring it back again to its parents, whowill think that you have saved it, and will be much too grateful todo you any harm. On the contrary, you will be received into fullfavor, and they will never let you want for anything again."
The dog was pleased with the plan, which was carried out ac-cordingly. When the father saw the wolf running away with hischild he cried out, and when old Sultan brought it back again, hewas much pleased with him, and patted him, saying, "Not a hair ofhim shall be touched; he shaU have food and shelter as long as helives." And he said to his wife, "Go home directly and make somegood stew for old Sultan, something that does not need biting; andget the piUow from my bed for him to lie on."
From that time old Sultan was made so comfortable that he hadnothing left to wish for.
Before long the wolf paid him a visit, to congratulate him that allhad gone so well. "But, old fellow," said he, "you must wink at mymaking off by chance with a fat sheep of your master's; perhapsone will escape some fine day." "Don't reckon on that," answeredthe dog; "I cannot consent to it; I must remain true to my master."
But the wolf, not supposing it was said in earnest, came sneakingin the night to carry off the sheep. But the master, who had beenwarned by the faithful Sultan of the wolfs intention, was waiting
for him, and gave him a fine hiding with the threshing-flail. So thewolf had to make his escape, calling out to the dog, "You shall payfor this, you traitorl"
The next morning the wolf sent the wild boar to call out the dog,and to appoint a meeting in the wood to receive satisfaction fromhim. Old Sultan could find no second but a cat with three legs, andas they set off together, the poor thing went limping along, holdingher tail up in the air. The wolf and his second were already on thespot. When they saw their antagonists coming, and caught sight ofthe elevated tail of the cat, they thought it was a saber they werebringing with them. And as the poor thing came limping on threelegs, they supposed it was lifting a big stone to throw at them. Thisfrightened them very much; the wild boar crept among the leaves,and the wolf clambered up into a tree. And when the dog and catcame up, they were surprised not to see any one there. However,the wild boar was not perfectly hidden in the leaves, and the tips ofhis ears peeped out. And when the cat caught sight of one, shethought it was a mouse, and sprang upon it, seizing it with herteeth. Out leaped the wild boar with a dreadful cry, and ran awayshouting, "There is the culprit in the treel"
And the dog and the cat, looking up, caught sight of the wolf,who came down, quite ashamed of his timidity, and made peacewith the dog once more.
A COCK and a hen once wanted to go on a journey together. So thecock built a beautiful carriage with four red wheels, and heharnessed four little mice to it. And the cock and the hen got intoit, and were driven off. Very soon they met a cat, who asked wherethey were going. The cock answered,
"On Mr. Korbes a call to pay.And that is where we go todayr
"Take me with you," said the cat.
The cock answered, "Very well, only you must sit well back, andthen you will not fall forward.
The Vagabonds iig
"And pray take careOf my red wheels there;And wheels he steady.And mice he readyOn Mr. Korhes a call to pay.For that is where we go today!"
Then there came up a mill-stone, then an egg, then a duck, then apin, and lastly a needle, who all got up on the carriage, and werediiven along. But when they came to Mr. Korbes's house he wasnot at home. So the mice drew the carriage into the bam, the cockand the hen flew up and perched on a beam, the cat sat by thefireside, the duck settled on the water; but the egg wrapped itselfin the towel, the pin stuck itself in the chair cushion, the needlejumped into the bed among the pillows, and the miU-stone laid it-self by the door.
Then Mr. Korbes came home, and went to the hearth to make afire, but the cat threw ashes in his eyes. Then he ran quickly intothe kitchen to wash himself, but the duck splashed water in hisface. Then he was going to wipe it with the towel, but the eggbroke in it, and stuck his eyelids together. In order to get a littlepeace he sat down in his chair, but the pin ran into him, and, start-ing up, in his vexation he threw himself on the bed, but as hishead fell on the pillow, in went the needle, so that he called outwith the pain, and madly rushed out. But when he reached thehousedoor the mill-stone jumped up and struck him dead.
What a bad man Mr. Korbes must have beenl
Tee cocx said to the hen, 'It is nutting time; let us go together tothe mountains and have a good feast for once, before the squirrelscome and carry all away." "Yes," answered the hen, "come along;we will have a jolly time together."
Then they set off together to the mountains, and as it was a fineday they stayed there till the evening. Now whether it was thatthey had eaten so much, or because of their pride and haughtiness,I do not know, but they would not go home on foot; so the cock setto work to make a little carriage out of nutshells. When it was
ready, the hen seated herself in it, and said to the cxjck, *T>Iow youcan harness yourself to it."
^That's all very fine," said the cock, *1 would sooner go home onfoot than do such a thing, and I never agreed to it. I don't mindbeing coachman, and sitting on the box; but as to drawing it my-self, it's quite out of the question."
As they were wrangling, a duck came quacking, "You thievingvagabonds, who told you you might go to my mountain? Look out,or it will be the worse for youl" And she flew at the cock with billwide open. But the cock was not backward, and he gave the duck agood dig in the body, and hacked at her with his spurs so valiantlyttiat she begged for mercy, and willingly aUowed herself to beharnessed to the carriage. Then the cock seated himself on the boxand was coachman; so off they went at a great pace, the cock cry-ing out "Run, duck, as fast as you cani"
When they had gone a part of the way they met two foot-pas-sengers—a pin and a needle. They cried "Stop! stopl" and said thatit would soon be blindman's holiday; that they could not go a stepfarther; that the ways were very muddy; might they just get in fora Httle? They had been standing at the door of the tailors' house ofcall and had been delayed because of beer.
The cock, seeing they were slender folks that would not take upa great deal of room, let them both step in, only they must promisenot to tread on his toes nor on the hen's.
Late in the evening they came to an inn, and there they foundthat they could not go any farther that night, as the duck's paceswere not good—she waddled so much from side to side—so theyturned in. The landlord at first made some difficulty; his house wasfull already, and he thought they had no very distinguished appear-ance. At last, however, when they had made many fine speeches,and had promised him the egg that the hen had laid on the way,and that he should keep the duck, who laid one every day, heagreed to let them stay the night; and so they had a very gay time.
Early in the morning, when it was beginning to grow light, andeverybody was still asleep, the cock waked up the hen, fetched theegg, and made a hole in it, and they ate it up between them, andput the eggshell on the hearth. Then they went up to the needle,who was still sleeping, picked him up by his head, and stuck him inthe landlord's chair-cushion, and, having also placed the pin in histowel, off they flew over the hills and far away. The duck, who hadchosen to sleep in the open air, and had remained in the yard,heard the rustling of their wings, and, waking up, looked about till
The Owl 121
she found a brook, down which she swam a good deal faster thanshe had drawn the carriage.
A few hours later the landlord woke, and, leaving his feather-bed,began washing himself; but when he took the towel to dry himselfhe drew the pin all across his face, and made a red streak from earto ear. Then he went into the kitchen to light his pipe, but when hestooped towards the hearth to take up a coal the eggshell flew inhis eyes.
"Everything goes wrong this morning," said he, and let himselfdrop, full of vexation, into his grandfather's chair; but up hejumped in a moment, crying, "Oh dear!" for the needle had goneinto him.
Now he became angry, and had his suspicions of the guests whohad arrived so late the evening before; and when he looked roundfor them they were nowhere to be seen.
Then he swore that he would never more harbor such vagabonds,that consumed so much, paid nothing, and played such nasty tricksinto the bargain.
Twa.0R THREE hundred years ago, when people were far from beingso crafty and cunning as they are nowadays, an extraordinary eventtook place in a Uttle town. By some mischance one of the greatowls, called homed owls, had come from the neighboring woodsinto the bam of one of the townsfolk in the night-time, and whenday broke did not dare to venture forth again from her retreat, forfear of the other birds, which raised a terrible outcry whenever sheappeared.
In the morning when the manservant went into the bam to fetchsome straw, he was so mightily alarmed at the sight of the owl sit-ting there in a comer, that he ran away and announced to hismaster that a monster, the like of which he had never set eyes onin his life, and which could devour a man without the slightestdifficulty, was sitting in the bam, rolling its eyes about in its head."I know you already," said the master, "you have courage enoughto chase a blackbird about the fields, but when you see a dead henlying, you have to get a stick before you go near it. I must go and
see for myself what kind of a monster it is," added the master, andwent quite boldly into the granary and looked round him. When,however, he saw the strange grim creature with his own eyes, hewas no less terrified than the servant had been. With two boundshe sprang out, ran to his neighbors, and begged them imploringlyto lend him assistance against an unknown and dangerous beast, orelse the whole town might be in danger if it were to break loose outof the bam, where it was shut up.
A great noise and clamor arose in all the streets, the townsmencame armed with spears, hay-forks, scythes, and axes, as if theywere going out against an enemy; finally, the senators appearedwith the burgomaster at their head. When they had drawn up inthe market-place, they marched to the bam, and surrounded it onall sides. Thereupon one of the most courageous of them steppedforth and entered with his spear lowered, but came miming out im-mediately afterwards with a shriek, and as pale as death, and couldnot utter a single word. Yet two others ventured in, but they faredno better.
At last one stepped forth, a great strong man who was famous forhis warlike deeds, and said, "You will not drive away the monsterby merely looking at him; we must be in earnest here, but I see thatyou have all turned into women, and not one of you dares to en-coimter the animal." He ordered them to give him some armor, hada sword and spear brought, and armed himself. All praised hiscourage, though many feared for his life. The two barn-doors wereopened, and they saw the owl, which in the meantime had perchedherself on the middle of a great cross-beam. He had a ladderbrought, and when he raised it, and made ready to climb up, theyall cried out to him that he was to bear himself bravely, and com-mended him to St. George, who slew the dragon. When he had justgot to the top, and the owl perceived that he had designs onher, and was also bewildered by the crowd and the shouting, andknew not how to escape, she rolled her eyes, ruflBled her feather,flapped her wings, snapped her beak, and cried, "Tuwhit, tuwhoo,"in a harsh voice. "Strike home! strike home!" screamed the crowdoutside to the valiant hero. "Any one who was standing where I amstanding," answered he, "would not cry 'strike home!'" He certainlydid plant his foot one rung higher on the ladder, but then he beganto tremble, and half-fainting, went back again.
And now there was no one left who dared to put himself in suchdanger. "The monster," said they, "has poisoned and mortallywounded the very strongest man among us, by snapping at him and
just breathing on him! Are we, too, to risk our lives?" They tookcounsel as to what they ought to do to prevent the whole townbeing destroyed. For a long time everything seemed to be of nouse, but at length the burgomaster found an expedient. "My opin-ion," said he, "is that we ought, out of the common purse, to payfor this bam, and whatsoever com, straw, or hay it contains, andthus indemnify the owner, and then bum down the whole building,and the terrible beast with it. Thus no one will have to endangerhis life. This is no time for thinking of expense, and niggardlinesswould be ill applied." All agreed with him. So they set fire to thebam at aU four comers, and with it the owl was miserably burnt.Let any one who will not believe it, go thither and inquire for him-self.
The Bremen Town Musicians
Thebe was once an ass whose master had made him carry sacks tothe mill for many a long year, but whose strength began at last tofail, so that each day as it came, found him less capable of work.Then his master began to think of turning him out, but the ass,guessing that something was in the wind that boded him no good,ran away, taking the road to Bremen; for there he thought he mightget an engagement as town musician.
When he had gone a little way he found a hoimd lying by theside of the road panting, as if he had run a long way. "Now,Holdfast, what are you so out of breath about?" said the ass.
"Oh dear!" said the dog, "now I am old, I get weaker every day,and can do no good in the hunt, so, as my master was going to haveme killed, I have made my escape; but now how am I to gain ahving?"
"I will tell you what," said the ass, *1 am going to Bremen to be-come town musician. You may as well go with me, and take upmusic too. I can play the lute, and you can beat the drum." And thedog consented, and they walked on together.
It was not long before they came to a cat sitting in the road, look-ing as dismal as three wet days. "Now then, what is the matterwith you, old shaver?" said the ass.
*T should like to know who would be cheerful when his neck is
in danger?" answered the cat. "Now that I am old my teeth are get-ting blunt, and I would rather sit by the oven and purr than runabout after mice, and my mistress wanted to drown me, so I tookmyself off; but good advice is scarce, and I do not know what is tobecome of me."
"Go with us to Bremen," said the ass, "and become town musi-cian. You understand serenading." The cat thought well of the idea,and went with them accordingly.
After that the three travelers passed by a yard, and a cock wasperched on the gate crowing with all his might. "Your cries areenough to pierce bone and marrow," said the ass; "what is thematter?"
"I have foretold good weather for Lady-day, so that all the shirtsmay be washed and dried; and now on Sunday morning company iscoming, and the mistress has told the cook that I must be made intosoup, and this evening my neck is to be wnmg, so that I am crow-ing with all my might while I can."
"You had much better go with us. Chanticleer," said the ass."We are going to Bremen. At any rate that will be better thandying. You have a powerful voice, and when we are all performingtogether it will have a very good effect." So the cock consented, andthey went on all four together.
But Bremen was too far off to be reached in one day, and to-wards evening they came to a wood, where they determined to passthe night. The ass and the dog lay down under a large tree; the catgot up among the branches; and the cock flew up to the top, as thatwas the safest place for him. Before he went to sleep he looked allround him to the four points of the compass, and perceived in thedistance a little Hght shining, and he called out to his companionsthat there must be a house not far off, as he could see a Hght, sothe ass said, "We had better get up and go there, for these are un-comfortable quarters." The dog began to fancy a few bones, notquite bare, would do him good. And they all set off in the directionof the Hght, and it grew larger and brighter, until at last it led themto a robber's house, all Hghted up. The ass, being the biggest, wentup to the window, and looked in.
"Well, what do you see?" asked the dog. "What do I see?" an-swered the ass; "here is a table set out with splendid eatables anddrinkables, and robbers sitting at it and making themselves verycomfortable." "That would just suit us," said the cock. "Yes, in-deed, I wish we were there," said the ass.
Then they consulted together how it should be managed so as to
The Bremen Town Musicians 125
get the robbers out of the house, and at last they hit on a plan. Theass was to place his fore-feet on the window-sill, the dog was to geton the ass's back, the cat on the top of the dog, and lastly, the cockwas to fly up and perch on the cat's head. When that was done, at agiven signal they all began to perform their music. The ass brayed,the dog barked, the cat mewed, and the cock crowed; then theyburst through into the room, breaking all the panes of glass. Therobbers fled at the dreadful sound; they thought it was some gob-lin, and fled to the wood in the utmost terror. Then the four com-panions sat down to table, made free with the remains of the meal,and feasted as if they had been hungry for a month. And whenthey had finished they put out the lights, and each sought out asleeping-place to suit his nature and habits. The ass laid himselfdown outside on the dunghill, the dog behind the door, the cat onthe hearth by the warm ashes, and the cock settled himself in thecockloft; and as they were all tired with their long journey theysoon fell fast asleep.
When midnight drew near, and the robbers from afar saw thatno light was burning, and that everything appeared quiet, theircaptain said to them that he thought that they had run away with-out reason, telling one of them to go and reconnoitre. So one ofthem went, and found everything quite quiet. He went into thekitchen to strike a light, and taking the glowing fiery eyes of the catfor burning coals, he held a match to them in order to kindle it. Butthe cat, not seeing the joke, flew into his face, spitting and scratch-ing. Then he cried out in terror, and ran to get out at the back door,but the dog, who was lying there, ran at him and bit his leg; and ashe was rushing through the yard by the dunghill the ass struck outand gave him a great kick with his hindfoot; and the cock, who hadbeen wakened with the noise, and felt quite brisk, cried out, "Cock-a-doodle-dool"
Then the robber got back as well as he could to bis captain, andsaid, "Oh dearl in that house there is a gruesome witch, and I felther breath and her long nails in my face; and by the door therestands a man who stabbed me in the leg with a knife; and in theyard there lies a black specter, who beat me with his wooden club;and above, upon the roof, there sits the justice, who cried, 'Bringthat rogue here!' And so I ran away from the place as fast as Icould."
From that time forward the robbers never ventured to thathouse, and the four Bremen town musicians found themselves so
well off where they were, that there they stayed. And the personwho last related this tale is still living, as you see.
The Wonderful Musician
A WONDERFUL musician was walking through a forest, thinking ofnothing in particular. When he had nothing more left to thinkabout, he said to himself, "I shall grow tired of being in this wood,so I will bring out a good companion."
He took the fiddle that hung at his back and fiddled so that thewood echoed. Before long a wolf came through the thicket andtrotted up to him.
"Oh, here comes a wolfl I had no particular wish for such com-pany," said the musician. But the wolf drew nearer, and said tohim, "Ho, you musician, how finely you playl I must learn how toplay too." "That is easily done," answered the musician; "you haveonly to do exactly as I tell you." "Oh musician," said the wolf, "Iwill obey you, as a scholar does his master."
The musician told him to come vwth him. As they went a part ofthe way together they came to an old oak tree, which was hollowv^thin and cleft through the middle. "Look here," said the musi-cian, "if you want to learn how to fiddle, you must put your fore-feet in this cleft."
The wolf obeyed, but the musician took up a stone and quicklywedged both his paws with one stroke, so fast, that the wolf was aprisoner, and there obliged to stop. "Stay there imtil I come backagain," said the musician, and went his way.
After a while he said again to himself, "I shall grow weary herein this wood; I will bring out another companion"; and he took hisfiddle and fiddled away in the wood. Before long a fox came slink-ing through the trees.
"Oh, here comes a fox!" said the musician; "I had no particularwish for such company."
The fox came up to him and said, "Oh my dear musician, howfinely you play! I must learn how to play too." "That is easilydone," said the musician; "you have only to do exactly as I teUyou." "Oh musician," answered the fox, "I will obey you, as ascholar his master."
The Wonderful Musician 127
"Follow me," said the musician; and as they went a part of theway together they came to a footpath with a high hedge on eachside. Then the musician stopped, and taking hold of a hazel-branchbent it down to the earth, and put his foot on the end of it; then hebent down a branch from the other side, and said, "Come on, littlefox, if you wish to learn something, reach me your left fore-foot."
The fox obeyed, and the musician bound the foot to the left-handbranch. "Now, little fox," said he, "reach me the right one"; then hebound it to the right-hand branch. And when he had seen that theknots were fast enough he let go, and the branches flew back andcaught up the fox, shaking and struggling, in the air. "Wait thereuntil I come back again," said the musician, and went his way.
By and by he said to himself, "I shall grow weary in this wood; Iwill bring out another companion." So he took his fiddle, and thesound echoed through the wood. Then a hare sprang out beforehim. "Oh, here comes a harel" said he; "that's not what I want."
"Ah, my dear musician," said the hare, "how finely you playl Ishould like to learn how to play too." "That is soon done," said themusician, "only you must do whatever I tell you."
"Oh musician," answered the hare, "1 will obey you, as a scholarhis master."
So they went a part of the way together, \mtil they came to aclear place in the wood where there stood an aspen tree. The musi-cian tied a long string round the neck of the hare, and knotted theother end of it to the tree.
"Now then, courage, little harel Run twenty times round thetreel" cried the musician, and the hare obeyed. As he ran round thetwentieth time the string had woimd twenty times round the treetrunk and the hare was imprisoned, and puU and tug as he wouldhe only cut his tender neck with the string. "Wait there until Icome back again," said the musician, and walked on.
The wolf meanwhile had struggled, and pulled, and bitten at thestone, and worked away so long, that at last he made his paws freeand got himself out of the cleft. Full of anger and fury he hastenedafter the musician to tear him to pieces.
When the fox saw him run by he began groaning, and cried outwith all his might, "Brother wolf, come and help me! The musicianhas betrayed me." The wolf then pulled the branches down, bit theknots in two, and set the fox free, and he went with him to takevengeance on the musician. They found the imprisoned hare, andset him likewise free, and then they all went on together to seektheir enemy.
The musician had once more played his fiddle, and this time hehad been more fortmiate. The sound had reached the ears of a poorwood-cutter, who immediately, and in spite of himself, left hiswork, and, with his axe under his arm, came to Hsten to the music.
"At last here comes the right sort of companion," said the musi-cian; "it was a man I wanted, and not wild animals." And then hebegan to play so sweetly that the poor man stood as if enchanted,and his heart was filled with joy. And as he was standing there upcame the wolf, the fox, and the hare, and he could easily see thatthey meant mischief. Then he raised his shining axe, and stood infront of the musician, as if to say, "Whoever means harm to himhad better take care of himself, for he will have to deal with me I"
Then the animals were frightened, and ran back into the wood,and the musician, when he had played once more to the man toshow his gratitude, went on his way.
The Mouse, the Bird, and the Sausage
Once on a time, a mouse and a bird and a sausage hved and kepthouse together in perfect peace among themselves, and in greatprosperity. It was the bird's business to fly to the forest every dayand bring back wood; the mouse had to draw the water, make thefire, and set the table; and the sausage had to do the cooking.Nobody is content in this world; much will have morel One day thebird met another bird on the way, and told him of his excellentcondition in life. But the other bird called him a poor simpleton todo so much work, while the two others led easy fives at home.
When the mouse had made up her fire and drawn water, shewent to rest in her fittle room until it was time to lay the cloth. Thesausage stayed by the saucepans, looked to it that the victuals werewell cooked, and just before dinner-time he stirred the broth or thestew three or four times well round himself, so as to enrich and sea-son and flavor it. Then the bird used to come home and lay downhis load, and they sat down to table, and after a good meal theywould go to bed and sleep their fill till the next morning. It reallywas a most satisfactory fife.
But the bird came to the resolution next day never again to fetchwood. He had, he said, been their slave long enough; now they
The Crumbs on the Table 129
must change about and make a new arrangement. So in spite of allthe mouse and the sausage could say, the bird was determined tohave his own way. So they drew lots to settle it, and it fell so thatthe sausage was to fetch wood, the mouse was to cook, and the birdwas to draw water.
Now see what happened. The sausage went away after wood, thebird made up the fire, and the mouse put on the pot, and theywaited until the sausage should come home, bringing the wood forthe next day. But the sausage was absent so long, that they thoughtsomething must have happened to him, and the bird went part ofthe way to see if he could see anything of him. Not far off he metwith a dog on the road, who, looking upon the sausage as lawfulprey, had picked him up, and made an end of him. The bird thenlodged a complaint against the dog as an open and flagrant robber,but it was all no good, as the dog declared that he had foundforged letters upon the sausage, so that he deserved to lose his life.
The bird then very sadly took up the wood and carried it homehimself, and related to the mouse all he had seen and heard. Theywere both very troubled, but determined to look on the bright sideof things, and still to remain together. And so the bird laid thecloth, and the mouse prepared the food, and finally got into the pot,as the sausage used to do, to stir and flavor the broth; but then shehad to part with fur and skin, and lastly with Hfel
And when the bird came to dish up the dinner, there was nocook to be seen; and he timied over the heap of wood, and lookedand looked, but the cook never appeared again. By accident thewood caught fire, and the bird hastened to fetch water to put it out,but he let fall the bucket in the well, and himself after it, and as hecould not get out again, he was obliged to be drowned.
The Crumbs on the Table
A COUNTRYMAN ouc day said to his little puppies, "Come into theparlor and enjoy yourselves, and pick up the bread-crumbs on thetable; your mistress has gone out to pay some visits." Then the littledogs said, ''No, no, we will not go. If the mistress gets to know it,she will beat us." The countryman said, "She will know nothingabout it. Do come; after all, she never gives you anything good."
Then the little dogs again said, "Nay, nay, we must let it alone, wemust not go." But the countryman let them have no peace until atlast they went, and got on the table, and ate up the bread-crumbswith all their might. But at that very moment the mistress came,and seized the stick in great haste, and beat them and treated themvery badly. And when they were outside the house, the little dogssaid to the countryman, "Do, do, do, do, do you see what hap-pened?" Then the countryman laughed and said, "Didn't, didn't,didn't you expect it?" So they just had to run away.
The Cat and the Mouse in Partnership
A CAT having made acquaintance with a mouse, pretended suchgreat love for her, that the mouse agreed that they should live andkeep house together.
"We must make provision for the winter," said the cat, "or weshall suffer hunger, and you, little mouse, must not stir out, or youwill be caught in a trap."
So they took counsel together and bought a Httle pot of fat. Andthen they could not tell where to put it for safety, but after longconsideration the cat said there could not be a better place than thechurch, for nobody would steal there; and they would put it underthe altar and not touch it until they were really in want. So this wasdone, and the little pot placed in safety.
But before long the cat was seized with a great wish to taste it."Listen to me, little mouse," said he; "I have been asked by mycousin to stand god-father to a little son she has brought into theworld; he is white with brown spots; and they want to have thechristening today; so let me go to it, and you stay at home and keephouse."
"Oh yes, certainly," answered the mouse, "pray go, by all means;and when you are feasting on all the good things, think of me. Ishould so hke a drop of the sweet red wine."
But there was not a word of truth in all tliis; the cat had nocousin, and had not been asked to stand god-father. He went to thechurch, straight up to the httle pot, and Hcked the fat off the top.Then he took a walk over the roofs of the town, saw his ac-quaintances, stretched himself in the sim, and licked his whiskers as
The Cat and the Mouse in Partnership 131
often as he thought of the little pot of fat, and then when it wasevening he went home.
"Here you are at last," said the mouse; "I expect you have had amerry time." "Oh, pretty well," answered the cat. "And what namedid you give the child?" asked the mouse. "Top-oflF," answered thecat, drily. "Top-off!" cried the mouse, "that is a singular and won-derful namel Is it common in your family?" "What does it matter?"said the cat; "it's not any worse than Cnmib-picker, like your god-child."
A little time after this the cat was again seized with a longing."Again I must ask you," said he to the mouse, "to do me a favor,and keep house alone for a day. I have been asked a second time tostand god-father; and as the little one has a white ring round itsneck, I cannot well refuse."
So the kind little mouse consented, and the cat crept along by thetown wall until he reached the church, and going straight to the lit-tle pot of fat, devoured half of it. "Nothing tastes so well as whatone keeps to oneself," said he, feeling quite content with his day'swork.
When he reached home, the mouse asked what name had beengiven to the child. "Half-gone," answered the cat. "Half-gonel"cried the mouse, "I never heard such a name in my lifel I'll bet it'snot to be found in the calendar."
Soon after that the cat's mouth began to water again for the fat."Good things always come in threes," said he to the mouse; "againI have been asked to stand god-father. The little one is quite blackwith white feet, and not any white hair on its body; such a thingdoes not happen every day, so you will let me go, won't you?"
"Top-off, Half-gone," murmured the mouse, "they are such curi-ous names, I cannot but wonder at them!" "That's because you arealways sitting at home," said the cat, "in your little gray frock andhairy tail, never seeing the world, and fancying all sorts of things."
So the little mouse cleaned up the house and set it aU in order.Meanwhile the greedy cat went and made an end of the little potof fat. "Now all is finished, one's mind will be easy," said he, andcame home in the evening, quite sleek and comfortable.
The mouse asked at once what name had been given to the thirdchild. "It won't please you any better than the others," answeredthe cat. "It is called All-gone." "All-gone!" cried the mouse. "Whatan unheard-of name! I never met with anything like it! AU-gonelWhatever can it mean?" And shaking her head, she curled herself
round and went to sleep. After that the cat was not again asked tostand god-father.
When the winter had come and there was nothing more to behad out of doors, the mouse began to think of their store. "Come,cat," said she, "we will fetch our pot of fat; how good it will taste,to be surel" "Of course it will," said the cat, "just as good as iE youstuck yom* tongue out of window!"
So they set out, and when they reached the place, they found thepot, but it was standing empty.
"Oh, now I know what it aU meant," cried the mouse; "now I seewhat sort of a partner you have beenl Instead of standing god-father you have devoiu-ed it all up; first Top-off, then Half-gone,then"—
"Will you hold your tongue!" screamed the cat, "another word,and I devour you too!"
And the poor little mouse, having "All-gone" on her tongue, outit came, and the cat leaped upon her and made an end of her. Andthat is the way of the world.
The Spider and the Flea
A Spider and a Flea dwelt together in one house, and brewed theirbeer in an egg-shell. One day, when the Spider was stirring it up,she fell in and scalded herself. Thereupon the Flea began toscream. And then the Door asked, "Why are you screaming, Flea?""Because little Spider has scalded herself in the beer-tub," repliedshe.
Thereupon the Door began to creak as if it were in pain; and aBroom, which stood in the comer, asked, "What are you creakingfor, Door?" "May I not creak?" it replied,
"The little Spidei^s scalded herself.And the Flea weeps!'
So the Broom began to sweep industriously, and presently a littleCart came by, and asked the reason. "May I not sweep?" repliedthe Broom,
"The little Spider's scalded herself.And the Flea weeps;The little Door creaks with the pain."
The Spider and the Flea 133
Thereupon the litde Cart said, "So will I run," and began to runvery fast past a heap of Ashes, which cried out, "Why do you run,little Cart?" "Because," replied the Cart,
"The little Spiders scalded herself.
And the Flea weeps;The little Door creaks with the pain.And the Broom sweeps."
"Then," said the Ashes, "I will bum furiously." Now, next theAshes there grew a Tree, which asked, "Little heap, why do youbum?" "Because," was the reply,
"The little Spiders scalded herself.
And the Flea weeps;The little Door creaks with the pain.
And the Broom sweeps;The little Cart runs on so fast."
Thereupon the Tree cried, "I wiU shake myself!" and went onshaking till all its leaves fell off.
A little girl passing by with a water-pitcher saw it shaking, andasked, "Why do you shake yourself, little Tree?" "Why may I not?"said the Tree,
"The little Spide/s scalded herself.
And the Flea weeps;The little Door creaks with the pain.
And the Broom sweeps;The little Cart runs on so fast.
And the Ashes burn."
Then the Maiden said, "If so, I will break my pitcher"; and shethrew it down and broke it.
At this the Streamlet, from which she drew the water, asked,"Why do you break your pitcher, my little Girl?" "Why may Inot?" she replied; for
"The little Spidef's scalded herself.
And the Flea weeps;The little Door creaks with the pain.
And the Broom sweeps;The little Cart runs on so fast.
And the Ashes burn;The little Tree shakes down its leaves—
Now it is my turn!"
"Ah, then," said the Streamlet, "now must I begin to flow." And it
flowed and flowed along, in a great stream, which kept gettingbigger and bigger, until at last it swallowed up the little Girl, thelittle Tree, the Ashes, the Cart, the Broom, the Door, the Flea and,last of all, the Spider, all together.
The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids
There was once on a time an old goat who had seven little kids,and loved them with all the love of a mother for her children. Oneday she wanted to go into the forest and fetch some food. So shecalled all seven to her and said, "Dear children, I have to go intothe forest; be on your guard against the wolf; if he comes in, heVidU devour you all—skin, hair, and all. The wretch often disguiseshimself, but you wiU know him at once by his rough voice and hisblack feet."
The kids said, "Dear mother, we wdll 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 andcried, "Open the door, dear children; your mother is here, and hasbrought something back with her for each of you."
But the little kids knew that it was the wolf, by the rough voice."We wiU not open the door," cried they, "you are not our mother.She has a soft, pleasant voice, but your voice is rough; you are thewolf!" The wolf went away to a shopkeeper and bought himself agreat lump of chalk, ate this and made his voice soft with it.
Then he came back, knocked at the door of the house, and cried,"Open the door, dear children, your mother is here and hasbrought something back with her for each of you."
But the wolf had laid his black paws against the window, and thechildren saw them and cried, "We vidll not open the door, ourmother has not black feet like you: you are the wolf I" Then thewolf ran to a baker and said, "I have hurt my feet; rub some doughover them for me." And when the leaker had rubbed his feet over,he ran to the miller and said, "Strew some white meal over my feetfor me." The miller thought to himself, "The wolf wants to deceivesome one," and refused; but the wolf said, "If you will not do it, I
The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids 135
will devour you." Then the miller was afraid, and made his pawswhite for him.
Now the wretch went for the third time to the house-door,knocked at it and said, "Open the door for me, children, your dearlittle mother has come home, and has brought every one of yousomething back from the forest with her." The little kids cried,"First show us your paws that we may know if you are our dear lit-tle mother." Then he put his paws in through the window, andwhen the kids saw that they were white, they beheved that all hesaid was true, and opened the door. But who should come in butthe wolf!
They were terrified and wanted to hide themselves. One sprangunder the table, the second into the bed, the third into the stove,the fourth into the kitchen, the fifth into the cupboard, the sixthunder the washing-bowl, and the seventh into the clock-case. Butthe wolf found them all, and used no great ceremony; one afterthe other h