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PUBLISHERS- ""''"'^l 

Originally published in ' Grimm's Fairy 

Tales. Illustrated by Arthur Rackham ' 1909 
Re-issued separately ..... 1920 





HANS IN LUCK ....... 10 



OLD SULTAN ....... 26 

CLEVER ELSA . . . . . . . .31 





THE FROG PRINCE ....... 60 


THE RAVEN ....... 67 


RAPUNZEL ........ 80 



'l 2 V 


THE GOLDEN BIRD ....... 98 


MOTHER HULDA ....... Ill 

RED RIDING HOOD ....... 1)6 


TOM THUMB ........ 125 





FRED AND KATE ....... 149 


List of Illustrations in Colour 

All at once the door opened and an old, old Woman, supporting herself 

on a crutch, came hobbling out . . . Frontispiece 


Hansel put out a knuckle-bone, and the old Woman, whose eyes were 
dim, could not see, and thought it was his finger, anil she was much 
astonished that he did not get fat 

By day she made herself into a cat . . It) 

. . . Or a screech owl . . . . . . .18 

Once there was a poor old woman who lived in a village . . 28 

At the third sting the Fox screamed, and down went his tail between 

his legs ... 58 

So she seized him with two ringers, and carried him upstairs . . 62 

The Cat stole away behind the city walls to the church . . 66 

Now we will go up the hill and have a good feast before the squirrel 

carries off all the nuts .... .74 

W T hen he went over the wall he was terrified to see the Witch before 

him ....... 80 

The Witch climbed up ..... 82 

Pulling the piece of soft cheese out of his pocket, he squeezed it till the 

moisture ran out .... 90 




They worked themselves up into such a rage that they tore up trees by 

the roots, and hacked at each other till they both fell dead . 94 

Away they flew over stock and stone, at such a pace that his hair whistled 

in the wind ........ 100 

When she got to the wood, she met a Wolf . . . .116 

'O Grandmother, what big ears you have got,' she said . . . 118 

At last she reached the cellar, and there she found an old, old woman 

with a shaking head . . . . . . .122 

When Tom had said good-bye to his Father, they went away with him . 128 

The Old Man had to sit by himself, and ate his food from a wooden 

bowl . . ...... 142 

The quicker he played, the higher she had to jump . . . 158 

VI 11 

List of Black and White Illustrations 


Hansel pirkoil up the glittering white pebbles and filled his pockets 

with them ........ 1 


HEADPIECE ........ 1 

'Stupid goose!' cried the Witch. 'The opening is big enough; you 

can see that I could get into it myself .... 8 

Just then a butcher came along the road, trundling a young pig in a 

wheel-barrow ..... .13 

At last the old woman came back, and said in a droning voice : ' Greeting 

to thee, Zachiel ! ' ... 19 

A short time after they came upon a Cat, sitting in the road, with a face 

as long as a wet week ...... 22 

The Ass brayed, the Hound barked, the Cat mewed, and the Cock 

crowed ........ 24 

When she saw the pick-axe just above her head, Clever Elsa burst into 

tears ......... 33 

On the road he met a Sparrow ...... 36 

On the opposite side of the lake stood a splendid brightly-lighted Castle 45 

There was once a Fisherman, who lived with his Wife in a miserable 

little hovel close to the sea ...... 48 

'Flounder, Flounder in the sea, Prythee, hearken unto me' . . 55 

The Golden Castle of Stromberg . . . . . 70 




One day he saw three Robbers fighting ..... 72 

She did not go once but many times, backwards and forwards to the 

well ......... 85 

'Wait a bit, and I'll give it you!' So saying, he struck out at them 

mercilessly ..... 89 

The Prince carried off the beautiful Maiden on the Golden Horse . 104 

The Mouse had to carry water, while the Sausage did the cooking . 109 
The Bird took the wood and flew sadly home with it . .110 

At last she came to a little house, out of which an old woman was 

looking ... .... 112 

So the lazy girl went home, but she was quite covered with pitch . 114 
They hurried away as quickly as they could . . . .122 

Tom Thumb ........ 126 

Then all at once the door sprang open, and in stepped a little Mannikin 134 

Round the fire an indescribably ridiculous little man was leaping, 

hopping on one leg, and singing . . . . .136 

The Bailiff sprang into the water with a great splash, and the whole 

party plunged in after him ...... 148 

Kate ran after him, and chased him a good way over the fields . . 150 

The Maiden fetched the magic wand, and then she took her step-sister's 

head, and dropped three drops of blood from it . . 157 

'Hansel picked up the glittering white pebbles and filled his pockets with them.' 

Hansel and Grethel 

CLOSE to a large forest there lived a Woodcutter with his 
Wife and his two children. The boy was called Hansel, 
and the girl Grethel. They were always very poor, and 
had very little to live on ; and at one time, when there was 
famine in the land, he could no longer procure daily bread. 

One night he lay in bed worrying over his troubles, and he 
sighed and said to his Wife : ' What is to become of us ? 
How are we to feed our poor children when we have nothing 
for ourselves ? ' 

' I '11 tell you what, Husband,' answered the Woman, 
'to-morrow morning we will take the children out quite early 
into the thickest part of the forest. We will light a fire, and 
give each of them a piece of bread ; then we will go to our 
work and leave them alone. They won't be able to find their 
way back, and so we shall be rid of them.' 

' Nay, Wife,' said the Man ; ' we won't do that. I could 
never find it in my heart to leave my children alone in the 
forest ; the wild animals would soon tear them to pieces.' 

' What a fool you are ! ' she said. ' Then we must all four 
die of hunger. You may as well plane the boards for our 
coffins at once.' 

She gave him no peace till he consented. ' But I grieve 
over the poor children all the same,' said the Man. 

The two children could not go to sleep for hunger either, 
and they heard what their Stepmother said to their Father. 

Grethel wept bitterly, and said : ' All is over with us now ! ' 

' Be quiet, Grethel ! ' said Hansel. ' Don't cry ; I will 
find some way out of it.' 

A 1 


When the old people had gone to sleep, he got up, put on 
his little coat, opened the door, and slipped out. The moon 
was shining brightly, and the white pebbles round the house 
shone like newly-minted coins. Hansel stooped down and 
put as many into his pockets as they would hold. 

Then he went back to Grethel, and said : ' Take comfort, 
little sister, and go to sleep. God won't forsake us.' And 
then he went to bed again. 

When the day broke, before the sun had risen, the Woman 
came and said : ' Get up, you lazybones ; we are going into 
the forest to fetch wood.' 

Then she gave them each a piece of bread, and said : 
' Here is something for your dinner, but mind you don't eat 
it before, for you '11 get no more.' 

Grethel put the bread under her apron, for Hansel had the 
stones in his pockets. Then they all started for the forest. 

When they had gone a little-way, Hansel stopped and looked 
back at the cottage, and he did the same thing again and again. 

His Father said : ' Hansel, what are you stopping to look 
back at ? Take care, and put your best foot foremost.' 

' O Father ! ' said Hansel, ' I am looking at my white 
cat, it is sitting on the roof, wanting to say good-bye to me.' 

' Little fool ! that 's no cat, it 's the morning sun shining 
on the chimney.' 

But Hansel had not been looking at the cat, he had been 
dropping a pebble on to the ground each time he stopped. 
When they reached the middle of the forest, their Father said: 

' Now, children, pick up some wood, I want to make a fire 
to warm you.' 

Hansel and Grethel gathered the twigs together and soon 
made a huge pile. Then the pile was lighted, and when it 
blazed up, the Woman said : ' Now lie down by the fire and 
rest yourselves while we go and cut wood ; when we have 
finished we will come back to fetch you.' 

Hansel and Grethel sat by the fire, and when dinner-time 
came they each ate their little bit of bread, and they thought 


their Father was quite near because they could hear the sound 
of an axe. It was no axe, however, but a branch which the 
Man had tied to a dead tree, and which blew backwards and 
forwards against it. They sat there such a long time that 
they got tired, their eyes began to close, and they were soon 
fast asleep. 

When they woke it was dark night. Grethel began to 
cry : ' How shall we ever get out of the wood ! ' 

But Hansel comforted her, and said : ' Wait a little till the 
moon rises, then we will soon find our way.' 

When the full moon rose, Hansel took his little sister's 
hand, and they walked on, guided by the pebbles, which 
glittered like newly-coined money. They walked the whole 
night, and at daybreak they found themselves back at their 
Father's cottage. 

They knocked at the door, and when the Woman opened 
it and saw Hansel and Grethel, she said : ' You bad children, 
why did you sleep so long in the wood ? We thought you did 
not mean to come back any more.' 

But their Father was delighted, for it had gone to his 
heart to leave them behind alone. 

Not long after they were again in great destitution, and 
the children heard the Woman at night in bed say to their 
Father : ' We have eaten up everything again but half a loaf, 
and then we are at the end of everything. The children must 
go away ; we will take them further into the forest so that 
they won't be able to find their way back. There is nothing 
else to be done.' 

The Man took it much to heart, and said : ' We had better 
share our last crust with the children.' 

But the Woman would not listen to a word he said, she 
only scolded and reproached him. Any one who once says A 
must also say B, and as he had given in the first time, he had 
to do so the second also. The children were again wide awake 
and heard what was said. 

When the old people went to sleep Hansel again got up, 



meaning to go out and get some more pebbles, but the Woman 
had locked the door and he couldn't get out. But he con- 
soled his little sister, and said : 

' Don't cry, Grethel ; go to sleep. God will help us.' 

In the early morning the Woman made the children get 
up, and gave them each a piece of bread, but it was smaller 
than the last. On the way to the forest Hansel crumbled it 
up in his pocket, and stopped every now and then to throw 
a crumb on to the ground. 

' Hansel, what are you stopping to look about you for ? ' 
asked his Father. 

' I am looking at my dove which is sitting on the roof and 
wants to say good-bye to me,' answered Hansel. 

' Little fool ! ' said the Woman, ' that is no dove, it is the 
morning sun shining on the chimney.' 

Nevertheless, Hansel strewed the crumbs from time to time 
on the ground. The Woman led the children far into the 
forest where they had never been in their lives before. Again 
they made a big fire, and the Woman said : 

' Stay where you are, children, and when you are tired 
you may go to sleep for a while. We are going further on to 
cut wood, and in the evening when we have finished we will 
come back and fetch you.' 

At dinner-time Grethel shared her bread with Hansel, 
for he had crumbled his up on the road. Then they went to 
sleep, and the evening passed, but no one came to fetch the 
poor children. 

It was quite dark when they woke up, and Hansel cheered 
his little sister, and said : * Wait a bit, Grethel, till the moon 
rises, then we can see the bread-crumbs which I scattered to 
show us the way home.' 

When the moon rose they started, but they found no bread- 
crumbs, for all the thousands of birds in the forest had pecked 
them up and eaten them. 

Hansel said to Grethel : * We shall soon find the way.' 

But they could not find it. They walked the whole night, 


and all the next day from morning till night, but they could 
not get out of the wood. 

They were very hungry, for they had nothing to eat but a 
few berries which they found. They were so tired that their 
legs would not carry them any further, and they lay down 
under a tree and went to sleep. 

When they woke in the morning, it was the third day since 
they had left their Father's cottage. They started to walk 
again, but they only got deeper and deeper into the wood, 
and if no help came they must perish. 

At midday they saw a beautiful snow-white bird sitting 
on a tree. It sang so beautifully that they stood still to listen 
to it. When it stopped, it fluttered its wings and flew round 
them. They followed it till they came to a little cottage, on 
the roof of which it settled itself. 

When they got quite near, they saw that the little house 
was made of bread, and it was roofed with cake ; the windows 
were transparent sugar. 

' This will be something for us,' said Hansel. ' We will 
have a good meal. I will have a piece of the roof, Grethel, 
and you can have a bit of the window, it will be nice and 

Hansel stretched up and broke off a piece of the roof to 
try what it was like. Grethel went to the window and nibbled 
at that. A gentle voice called out from within : 

' Nibbling, nibbling like a mouse, 
Who's nibbling at my little house?' 

The children answered : 

'The wind, the wind doth blow 
From heaven to earth below," 1 

and went on eating without disturbing themselves. Hansel, 
who found the roof very good, broke off a large piece for 
himself ; and Grethel pushed a whole round pane out of the 
window, and sat down on the ground to enjoy it. 



All at once the door opened and an old, old Woman, 
supporting herself on a crutch, came hobbling out. Hansel 
and Grethel were so frightened, that they dropped what they 
held in their hands. 

But the old Woman only shook her head, and said : * Ah, 
dear children, who brought you here ? Come in and stay 
with me ; you will come to no harm.' 

She took them by the hand and led them into the little 
house. A nice dinner was set before them, pancakes and 
sugar, milk, apples, and nuts. After this she showed them 
two little white beds into which they crept, and felt as if they 
were in Heaven. 

Although the old Woman appeared to be so friendly, she 
was really a wicked old Witch who was on the watch for 
children, and she had built the bread house on purpose to lure 
them to her. Whenever she could get a child into her clutches 
she cooked it and ate it, and considered it a grand feast. 
Witches have red eyes, and can't see very far, but they have 
keen scent like animals, and can perceive the approach of 
human beings. 

When Hansel and Grethel came near her, she laughed 
wickedly to herself, and said scornfully : ' Now I have them, 
they shan't escape me.' 

She got up early in the morning, before the children were 
awake, and when she saw them sleeping, with their beautiful 
rosy cheeks, she murmured to herself : ' They will be dainty 

She seized Hansel with her bony hand and carried him off 
to a little stable, where she shut him up with a barred door ; 
he might shriek as loud as he liked, she took no notice of him. 
Then she went to Grethel and shook her till she woke, and 
cried : 

' Get up, little lazy-bones, fetch some water and cook 
something nice for your brother ; he is in the stable, and has 
to be fattened. When he is nice and fat, I will eat him.' 

Grethel began to cry bitterly, but it was no use, she had 


to obey the Witch's orders. The best food was now cooked 
for poor Hansel, but Grethel only had the shells of cray- 

The old Woman hobbled to the stable every morning, 
and cried : ' Hansel, put your finger out for me to feel how 
fat you are.' 

Hansel put out a knuckle-bone, and the old Woman, whose 
eyes were dim, could not see, and thought it was his finger, 
and she was much astonished that he did not get fat. 

When four weeks had passed, and Hansel still kept thin, 
she became very impatient and would wait no longer. 

4 Now then, Grethel,' she cried, ' bustle along and fetch 
the water. Fat or thin, to-morrow I will kill Hansel and eat 

Oh, how his poor little sister grieved. As she carried the 
water, the tears streamed down her cheeks. 

' Dear God, help us ! ' she cried. ' If only the wild 
animals in the forest had devoured us, we should, at least, 
have died together.' 

' You may spare your lamentations ; they will do you no 
good,' said the old Woman. 

Early in the morning Grethel had to go out to fill the 
kettle with water, and then she had to kindle a fire and hang 
the kettle over it. 

* We will bake first,' said the old Witch. * I have heated 
the oven and kneaded the dough.' 

She pushed poor Grethel towards the oven, and said : 
' Creep in and see if it is properly heated, and then we will 
put the bread in.' 

She meant, when Grethel had got in, to shut the door and 
roast her. 

But Grethel saw her intention, and said : ' I don't know 
how to get in. How am I to manage it ? ' 

' Stupid goose ! ' cried the Witch. ' The opening is big 
enough ; you can see that I could get into it myself.' 

She hobbled up, and stuck her head into the oven. But 



Grethel gave her a push which sent the Witch right in, and 
then she banged the door and bolted it. 

' Oh ! oh ! ' she began to howl horribly. But Grethel 
ran away and left the wicked Witch to perish miserably. 

Grethel ran as fast as she could to the stable. She opened 
the door, and cried : ' Hansel, we are saved. The old Witch 
is dead.' 

'Stnpld goote !' cried the Witch. 'The opening is big enough ; you can see 
that I could get into it myself.' 

Hansel sprang out, like a bird out of a cage when the door 
is set open. How delighted they were. They fell upon each 
other's necks, and kissed each other, and danced about for joy. 

As they had nothing more to fear, they went into the 
Witch's house, and they found chests in every corner full of 
pearls and precious stones. 


' These are better than pebbles,' said Hansel, as he filled 
his pockets. 

Grethel said : ' I must take something home with me too.' 
And she filled her apron. 

' But now we must go,' said Hansel, ' so that we may get 
out of this enchanted wood.' 

Before they had gone very far, they came to a great piece 
of water. 

' We can't get across it,' said Hansel ; ' I see no stepping- 
stones and no bridge.' 

' And there are no boats either,' answered Grethel. ' But 
there is a duck swimming, it will help us over if we ask it.' 

So she cried 

' Little duck, that cries quack, quack, 
Here Grethel and here Hansel stand. 
Quickly, take us on your back, 
No path nor bridge is there at hand ! ' 

The duck came swimming towards them, and Hansel got 
on its back, and told his sister to sit on his knee. 

' No,' answered Grethel, ' it will be too heavy for the duck ; 
it must take us over one after the other.' 

The good creature did this, and when they had got safely 
over and walked for a while, the wood seemed to grow more and 
more familiar to them, and at last they saw their Father's 
cottage in the distance. They began to run, and rushed 
inside, where they threw their arms round their Father's neck. 
The Man had not had a single happy moment since he had 
deserted his children in the wood, and in the meantime his 
Wife was dead. 

Grethel shook her apron and scattered the pearls and 
precious stones all over the floor, and Hansel added handful 
after handful out of his pockets. 

So all their troubles came to an end, and they lived together 
as happily as possible. 


Hans in Luck 

HANS had served his master for seven years, when 
he one day said to him : ' Master, my time is up, 
I want to go home to my mother ; please give me 
my wages.' 

His master answered, ' You have served me well and 
faithfully, and as the service has been, so shall the wages be ' ; 
and he gave him a lump of gold as big as his head. 

Hans took out his pocket-handkerchief and tied up the gold 
in it, and then slung the bundle over his shoulder, and started 
on his homeward journey. 

As he walked along, just dragging one foot after the other, 
a man on horseback appeared, riding, fresh and gay, along 
on his spirited horse. 

' Ah ! ' said Hans, quite loud as he passed, ' what a fine 
thing riding must be. You are as comfortable as if you were 
in an easy-chair ; you don't stumble over any stones ; you 
save your shoes, and you get over the road you needn't bother 

The horseman, who heard him, stopped and said, ' Hullo, 
Hans, why are you on foot ? ' 

' I can't help myself,' said Hans, ' as I have this bundle 
to carry home. It is true that it is a lump of gold, but I can 
hardly hold my head up for it, and it weighs down my shoulder 

' I '11 tell you what,' said the horseman, ' we will change. 
I will give you my horse, and you shall give me your bundle.' 

' With all my heart,' said Hans ; ' but you will be rarely 
burdened with it.' 

The horseman dismounted, took the gold, and helped Hans 


up, put the bridle into his hands, and said : ' When you want 
to go very fast, you must click your tongue and cry " Gee-up, 
Gee-up." ' 

Hans was delighted when he found himself so easily riding 
along on horseback. After a time it occurred to him that he 
might be going faster, and he began to click with his tongue, 
and to cry ' Gee-up, Gee-up.' The horse broke into a gallop, 
and before Hans knew where he was, he was thrown off into 
a ditch which separated the fields from the high road. The 
horse would have run away if a peasant coming along the 
road leading a cow had not caught it. Hans felt himself all 
over, and picked himself up ; but he was very angry, and said 
to the peasant : ' Riding is poor fun at times, when you have 
a nag like mine, which stumbles and throws you, and puts 
you in danger of breaking your neck. I will never mount 
it again. I think much more of that cow of yours. You can 
walk comfortably behind her, and you have her milk into 
the bargain every day, as well as butter and cheese. What 
would I not give for a cow like that ! ' 

' Well,' said the peasant, ' if you have such a fancy for it 
as all that, I will exchange the cow for the horse.' 

Hans accepted the offer with delight, and the peasant 
mounted the horse and rode rapidly off. 

Hans drove his cow peacefully on, and thought what a 
lucky bargain he had made. ' If only I have a bit of bread, 
and I don't expect ever to be without that, I shall always have 
butter and cheese to eat with it. If I am thirsty, I only have 
to milk my cow and I have milk to drink. My heart ! what 
more can you desire ? ' 

When he came to an inn he made a halt, and in great joy 
he ate up all the food he had with him, all his dinner and his 
supper too, and he gave the last coins he had for half a glass 
of beer. Then he went on further in the direction of his 
mother's village, driving his cow before him. The heat was 
overpowering, and, as midday drew near, Hans found himself 
on a heath which it took him an hour to cross. He was so 



hot and thirsty, that his tongue was parched and clung to the 
roof of his mouth. 

' This can easily be set to rights,' thought Hans. * I will 
milk my cow and sup up the milk.' He tied her to a tree, 
and as he had no pail, he used his leather cap instead ; but, 
try as hard as he liked, not a single drop of milk appeared. 
As he was very clumsy in his attempts, the impatient animal 
gave him a severe kick on his forehead with one of her hind 
legs. He was stunned by the blow, and fell to the ground, 
where he lay for some time, not knowing where he was. 

Happily just then a butcher came along the road, trundling 
a young pig in a wheel-barrow. 

' What is going on here ? ' he cried, as he helped poor Hans 

Hans told him all that had happened. 

The butcher handed him his flask, and said : ' Here, take 
a drink, it will do you good. The cow can't give any milk 
I suppose ; she must be too old, and good for nothing but to 
be a beast of burden, or to go to the butcher.' 

' Oh dear !/ said Hans, smoothing his hair. ' Now who 
would ever have thought it 1 Killing the animal is all very 
well, but what kind of meat will it be ? For my part, I don't 
like cow's flesh ; it 's not juicy enough. Now, if one had a 
nice young pig like that, it would taste ever so much better ; 
and then, all the sausages ! ' 

' Listen, Hans ! ' then said the butcher, ' for your sake I 
will exchange, and let you have the pig instead of the cow.' 

' God reward your friendship ! ' said Hans, handing over 
the cow, as the butcher untied the pig, and put the halter 
with which it was tied into his hand. 

Hans went on his way, thinking how well everything was 
turning out for him. Even if a mishap befell him, something 
else immediately happened to make up for it. Soon after 
this, he met a lad carrying a beautiful white goose under his 
arm. They passed the time of day, and Hans began to tell 
him how lucky he was, and what successful bargains he had 


made. The lad told him that he was taking the goose for a 
christening feast. ' Just feel it,' he went on, holding it up 
by the wings. ' Feel how heavy it is ; it 's true they have 
been stuffing it for eight weeks. Whoever eats that roast 
goose will have to wipe the fat off both sides of his mouth.' 

Just then a butcher came along the road, trundling a young pig 
in a wheel-barrow. 

' Yes, indeed ! ' answered Hans, weighing it in his hand ; 
' but my pig is no light weight either.' 

Then the lad looked cautiously about from side to side, 
and shook his head. ' Now, look here,' he began, ' I don't 



think it 's all quite straight about your pig. One has just 
been stolen out of Schultze's sty, in the village I have come 
from. I fear, I fear it is the one you are leading. They 
have sent people out to look for it, and it would be a bad 
business for you if you were found with it ; the least they 
would do, would be to put you in the black hole.' 

Poor Hans was very much frightened at this. ' Oh, dear I 
oh dear I ' he said. ' Do help me out of this trouble. You 
are more at home here ; take my pig, and let me have your 

' Well, I shall run some risk if I do, but I won't be the means 
of getting you into a scrape.' 

So he took the rope in his hand, and quickly drove the pig 
up a side road ; and honest Hans, relieved of his trouble, 
plodded on with the goose under his arm. 

' When I really come to think it over,' he said to himself, 
' I have still had the best of the bargain. First, there is the 
delicious roast goose, and then all the fat that will drip out 
of it in roasting, will keep us in goose-fat to eat on our bread 
for three months at least ; and, last of all, there are the 
beautiful white feathers which I will stuff my pillow with, 
and then I shall need no rocking to send me to sleep. How 
delighted my mother will be.' 

As he passed through the last village he came to a knife- 
grinder with his cart, singing to his wheel as it buzzed merrily 

' Scissors and knives I grind so fast, 
And hang up my cloak against the blast.' 

Hans stopped to look at him, and at last he spoke to him and 
said, ' You must be doing a good trade to be so merry over 
your grinding.' 

' Yes,' answered the grinder. * The work of one's hands is 
the foundation of a golden fortune. A good grinder finds 
money whenever he puts his hand into his pocket. But 
where did you buy that beautiful goose ? ' 

' I did not buy it ; I exchanged my pig for it.' 


* And the pig ? ' 

* Oh, I got that instead of my cow.' 
4 And the cow ? ' 

' I got that for a horse.' 

* And the horse ? ' 

' I gave a lump of gold as big as my head for it.' 

' And the gold ? ' 

' Oh, that was my wages for seven years' service.' 

' You certainly have known how to manage your affairs,' 
said the grinder. ' Now, if you could manage to hear the 
money jingling in your pockets when you got up in the morning, 
you would indeed have made your fortune.' 

' How shall I set about that ? ' asked Hans. 

' You must be a grinder like me nothing is needed for it 
but a whetstone ; everything else will come of itself. I have 
one here which certainly is a little damaged, but you need not 
give me anything for it but your goose. Are you willing ? ' 

' How can you ask me such a question ? ' said Hans. 
' Why, I shall be the happiest person in the world. If I can 
have some money every time I put my hand in my pocket, 
what more should I have to trouble about ? ' 

So he handed him the goose, and took the whetstone in 

' Now,' said the grinder, lifting up an ordinary large stone 
which lay near on the road, * here is another good stone into 
the bargain. You can hammer out all your old nails on it 
to straighten them. Take it, and carry it off.' 

Hans shouldered the stone, and went on his way with a 
light heart, and his eyes shining with joy. ' I must have 
been born in a lucky hour,' he cried ; ' everything happens 
just as I want it, and as it would happen to a Sunday's child.' 

In the meantime, as he had been on foot since daybreak, 
he began to feel very tired, and he was also very hungry, as 
he had eaten all his provisions at once in his joy at his bargain 
over the cow. At last he could hardly walk any further, 
and he was obliged to stop every minute to rest. Then the 



stones were frightfully heavy, and he could not get rid of the 
thought that it would be very nice if he were not obliged to 
carry them any further. He dragged himself like a snail 
to a well in the fields, meaning to rest and refresh himself 
with a draught of the cool water. So as not to injure the 
stones by sitting on them, he laid them carefully on the edge 
of the well. Then he sat down, and was about to stoop down 
to drink when he inadvertently gave them a little push, and 
both the stones fell straight into the water. 

When Hans saw them disappear before his very eyes he 
jumped for joy, and then knelt down and thanked God, with 
tears in his eyes, for having shown him this further grace, 
and relieved him of the heavy stories (which were all that 
remained to trouble him) without giving him anything to 
reproach himself with. ' There is certainly no one under the 
sun so happy as I.' 

And so, with a light heart, free from every care, he now 
bounded on home to his mother. 


Jorinda and Joringel 

THERE was once an old castle in the middle of a vast 
thick wood ; in it there lived an old woman quite 
alone, and she was a witch. By day she made 
herself into a cat or a screech-owl, but regularly at night she 
became a human being again. In this way she was able to 
decoy wild beasts and birds, which she would kill, and boil or 
roast. If any man came within a hundred paces of the castle, 
he was forced to stand still and could not move from the place 
till she gave the word of release ; but if an innocent maiden 
came within the circle she changed her into a bird, and shut 
her up in a cage which she carried into a room in the castle. 
She must have had seven thousand cages of this kind, contain- 
ing pretty birds. 

Now, there was once a maiden called Jorinda who was 
more beautiful than all other maidens. She had promised 
to marry a very handsome youth named Joringel, and it was 
in the days of their courtship, when they took the greatest 
joy in being alone together, that one day they wandered out 
into the forest. ' Take care,' said Joringel ; ' do not let us 
go too near the castle.' 

It was a lovely evening. The sunshine glanced between 
the tree-trunks of the dark green-wood, while the turtle-doves 
sang plaintively in the old beech-trees. Yet Jorinda sat down 
in the sunshine, and could not help weeping and bewailing, 
while Joringel, too, soon became just as mournful. They 
both felt as miserable as if they had been going to die. 
Gazing round them, they found they had lost their way, 
and did not know how they should find the path home. 
Half the sun still appeared above the mountain ; half had sunk 

B 17 


below. Joringel peered into the bushes and saw the old 
walls of the castle quite close to them ; he was terror-struck, 
and became pale as death. Jorinda was singing : 

' My birdie with its ring so red 

Sings sorrow, sorrow, sorrow ; 
My love will mourn when I am dead, 
To-morrow, morrow, nior jug, jug.' 

Joringel looked at her, but she was changed into a nightin- 
gale who sang ' Jug, jug.' 

A screech-owl with glowing eyes flew three times round her, 
and cried three times ' Shu hu-hu.' Joringel could not stir ; 
he stood like a stone without being able to speak, or cry, or 
move hand or foot. The sun had now set ; the owl flew into 
a bush, out of which appeared almost at the same moment a 
crooked old woman, skinny and yellow ; she had big, red eyes 
and a crooked nose whose tip reached her chin. She mumbled 
something, caught the nightingale, and carried it away in her 
hand. Joringel could not say a word nor move from the spot, 
and the nightingale was gone. At last the old woman came 
back, and said in a droning voice : ' Greeting to thee, 
Zachiel ! When the moon shines upon the cage, unloose the 
captive, Zachiel ! ' 

Then Joringel was free. He fell on his knees before the 
witch, and implored her to give back his Jorinda ; but she 
said he should never have her again, and went away. He 
pleaded, he wept, he lamented, but all in vain. ' Alas ! 
what is to become of me ? ' said Joringel. At last he went 
away, and arrived at a strange village, where he spent a long 
time as a shepherd. He often wandered round about the 
castle, but did not go too near it. At last he dreamt one night 
that he found a blood-red flower, in the midst of which was 
a beautiful large pearl. He plucked the flower, and took it 
to the castle. Whatever he touched with it was made free 
of enchantment. He dreamt, too, that by this means he had 
found his Jorinda again. In the morning when he awoke he 

At lust the old woman came back, and said in a droning voice: ' Urcutiii^ to thee, Zacliiul !' 


began to search over hill and dale, in the hope of finding a 
flower like this ; he searched till the ninth day, when he found 
the flower early in the morning. In the middle was a big 
dewdrop, as big as the finest pearl. This flower he carried 
day and night, till he reached the castle. He was not held 
fast as before when he came within the hundred paces of the 
castle, but walked straight up to the door. 

Joringel was filled with joy ; he touched the door with the 
flower, and it flew open. He went in through the court, and 
listened for the sound of birds. He went on, and found the 
hall, where the witch was feeding the birds in the seven 
thousand cages. When she saw Joringel she was angry, 
very angry scolded, and spat poison and gall at him. He 
paid no attention to her, but turned away and searched among 
the bird-cages. Yes, but there were many hundred nightin- 
gales ; how was he to find his Jorinda ? 

While he was looking about in this way he noticed that the 
old woman was secretly removing a cage with a bird inside, 
and was making for the door. He sprang swiftly towards her, 
touched the cage and the witch with the flower, and then 
she no longer had power to exercise her spells. Jorinda stood 
there, as beautiful as before, and threw her arms round 
Joringel's neck. After that he changed all the other birds 
back into maidens again, and went home with Jorinda, and 
they lived long and happily together. 


The Bremen Town Musicians 

ONCE upon a time a man had an Ass which for many 
years carried sacks to the mill without tiring. At 
last, however, its strength was worn out ; it was 
no longer of any use for work. Accordingly its master began 
to ponder as to how best to cut down its keep ; but the Ass, 
seeing there was mischief in the air, ran away and started 
on the road to Bremen ; there he thought he could become 
a town-musician. 

When he had been travelling a short time, he fell in with a 
hound, who was lying panting on the road as though he had 
run himself off his legs. 

' Well, what are you panting so for, Growler ? ' said the Ass. 

4 Ah,' said the Hound, ' just because I am old, and every 
day I get weaker, and also because I can no longer keep 
up with the pack, my master wanted to kill me, so I took my 
departure. But now, how am I to earn my bread ? ' 

' Do you know what,' said the Ass. ' I am going to Bremen, 
and shall there become a town-musician ; come with me and 
take your part hi the music. I shall play the lute, and you 
shall beat the kettle-drum.' 

The Hound agreed, and they went on. 

A short time after they came upon a Cat, sitting in the road, 
with a face as long as a wet week. 

' Well, what has been crossing you, Whiskers ? ' asked the 

' Who can be cheerful when he is out at elbows ? ' said 
the Cat. ' I am getting on in years, and my teeth are blunted 
and I prefer to sit by the stove and purr instead of hunting 
round after mice. Just because of this my mistress wanted 



to drown me. I made myself scarce, but now I don't know 

where to turn.' 

* Come with us to Bremen,' said the Ass. ' You are a great 

hand at serenading, so you can become a town-musician.' 

The Cat consented, 
and joined them. 

Next the fugitives 
passed by a yard where 
a barn-door fowl was 
sitting on the door, 
crowing with all its 

' You crow so loud 
you pierce one through 
and through,' said the 
Ass. 'What is the 
matter ? ' 

'Why! didn't I 
prophesy fine weather 
for Lady Day, when 
Our Lady washes the 
Christ Child's little 
garment and wants to 
dry it ? But, not- 
withstanding this, be- 
cause Sunday visitors 
are coming to-morrow, 
the mistress has no 
pity, and she has or- 
dered the cook to 
make me into soup, 

so I shall have my neck wrung to-night. Now I am crowing 

with all my might while I have the chance.' 

' Come along, Red-comb,' said the Ass ; ' you had much 

better come with us. We are going to Bremen, and you 

will find a much better fate there. You have a good voice, 

A short time after they came upon a Cat, Bitting in 
tbe road, with a face as long as a wet week. 


and when we make music together, there will be quality 
in it.' 

The Cock allowed himself to be persuaded, and they all four 
went off together. They could not, however, reach the town 
in one day, and by evening they arrived at a wood, where 
they determined to spend the night. The Ass and the Hound 
lay down under a big tree ; the Cat and the Cock settled 
themselves in the branches, the Cock flying right up to the 
top, which was the safest place for him. Before going to sleep 
he looked round once more in every direction ; suddenly it 
seemed to him that he saw a light burning in the distance. 
He called out to his comrades that there must be a house 
not far off, for he saw a light. 

' Very well,' said the Ass, ' let us set out and make our way 
to it, for the entertainment here is very bad:' 

The Hound thought some bones or meat would suit him 
too, so they set out in the direction of the light, and soon saw 
it shining more clearly, and getting bigger and bigger, till 
they reached a brightly-lighted robbers' den. The Ass, 
being the tallest, approached the window and looked in. 

* What do you see, old Jackass ? ' asked the Cock. 

' What do I see ? ' answered the Ass ; ' why, a table spread 
with delicious food and drink, and robbers seated at it enjoying 

' That would just suit us,' said the Cock. 

4 Yes ; if we were only there,' answered the Ass. 

Then the animals took counsel as to how to set about 
driving the robbers out. At last they hit upon a plan. 

The Ass was to take up his position with his fore-feet on 
the window-sill, the Hound was to jump on his back, the Cat 
to climb up on to the Hound, and last of all the Cock flew up 
and perched on the Cat's head. When they were thus 
arranged, at a given signal they all began to perform their 
music ; the Ass brayed, the Hound barked, the Cat mewed, 
and the Cock crowed ; then they dashed through the window, 
shivering the panes. The robbers jumped up at the terrible 



noise ; they thought nothing less than that a demon was 
coming in upon them, and fled into the wood in the greatest 
alarm. Then the four animals sat down to table, and helped 
themselves according to taste, and ate as though they had 

been starving for weeks. 
When they had finished 
they extinguished the light, 
and looked for sleeping 
places, each one to suit his 
nature and taste. 

The Ass lay down on the 
manure heap, the Hound 
behind the door, the Cat on 
the hearth near the warm 
ashes, and the Cock flew 
up to the rafters. As they 
were tired from the long 
journey, they soon went 
to sleep. 

When midnight was 
past, and the robbers saw 
from a distance that the 
light was no longer burn- 
ing, and that all seemed 
quiet, the chief said : 

' We ought not to have 
been scared by a false 
alarm,' and ordered one of 
the robbers to go and ex- 
amine the house. 

Finding all quiet, the 
messenger went into the 
kitchen to kindle a light, and taking the Cat's glowing, fiery 
eyes for live coals, he held a match close to them so as to light 
it. But the Cat would stand no nonsense ; it flew at his face, 
spat and scratched. He was terribly frightened and ran away. 

The As brayed, the Hound barked, the Cat 
mewed, and the Cock crowed. 


He tried to get out by the back door, but the Hound, who 
was lying there, jumped up and bit his leg. As he ran across 
the manure heap in front of the house, the Ass gave him a 
good sound kick with his hind legs, while the Cock, who 
had awoken at the uproar quite fresh and gay, cried out from 
his perch : ' Cock-a-doodle-doo.' Thereupon the robber ran 
back as fast as he could to his chief, and said : ' There is a 
gruesome witch in the house, who breathed on me and 
scratched me with her long fingers. Behind the door there 
stands a man with a knife, who stabbed me ; while in the 
yard lies a black monster, who hit me with a club ; and upon 
the roof the judge is seated, and he called out, " Bring the 
rogue here," so I hurried away as fast as I could.' 

Thenceforward the robbers did not venture again to the 
house, which, however, pleased the four Bremen musicians 
so much that they never wished to leave it again. 

And he who last told the story has hardly finished speaking 


Old Sultan 

A PEASANT once had a faithful dog called Sultan, 
who had grown old and lost all his teeth, and 
could no longer keep fast hold of his quarry. One 
day when the peasant was standing in front of his house with 
his wife, he said : ' To-morrow I intend to shoot old Sultan ; 
he is no longer any use.' 

His wife, who pitied the faithful animal, answered : ' Since 
he has served us so long and honestly, we might at least keep 
him and feed him to the end of his days.' 

4 What nonsense,' said her husband ; ' you are a fool. He 
has not a tooth left in his head ; thieves are not a bit afraid 
of him now that they can get away from him. Even if he has 
served us well, he has been well fed in return.' 

The poor dog, who lay near, stretched out in the sun, heard 
all they said, and was sad at the thought that the next day was 
to be his last. Now, he had a good friend who was a wolf, 
and in the evening he slunk off into the wood, and complained 
to him of the fate which awaited him. 

' Listen, comrade,' said the Wolf, ' be of good cheer ; I will 
help you in your need, for I have thought of a plan. To- 
morrow your master and mistress are going hay-making, and 


they will take their little child with them because there will 
be nobody left at home. During their work they usually lay 
it under the hedge in the shade ; you lie down as though to 
guard it. I will then come out of the wood and steal the 
child. You must rush quickly after me, as though you wanted 
to rescue the child. I will let it fall, and you will take it back 
to its parents again ; they will think that you have saved it, 
and will be far too thankful to do you any harm. On the 
contrary, you will come into high favour, and they will never 
let you want again.' 

The plot pleased the dog, and it was carried out just as it 
was planned. The father cried out when he saw the Wolf 
run across the field with his child in its mouth ; but when 
old Sultan brought it back he was overjoyed, stroked him, 
and said : ' Not a hair of your coat shall be hurt ; you shall 
have plenty to eat as long as you live.' Then he said to his 
wife : ' Go home immediately and prepare some broth for 
old Sultan which he won't need to bite, and bring the pillow 
out of my bed. I will give it to him to lie upon.' 

Henceforward old Sultan was as well off as he could wish. 
Soon afterwards the Wolf paid him a visit, and rejoiced that 
all had turned out so well. ' But, comrade,' he said, ' you 
must shut your eyes. Suppose some fine day I carry off one 
of your master's fat sheep ? Nowadays it is hard to get 
one's living.' 

' Don't count on that,' answered the dog. ' I must remain 
true to my master I shall never permit it ? ' 

The Wolf, thinking that he had not spoken in earnest, came 
and crept in at night, and tried to carry off a sheep. But the 
peasant, to whom the faithful Sultan had betrayed the Wolf's 
intention, spied him and belaboured him soundly with a 
threshing-flail. The Wolf was forced to retreat, but he called 
out to the dog, ' Wait a bit, you wicked creature you shall 
suffer for this.' 

The next morning he sent the Boar to invite the Dog into 
the wood, there to settle matters by a duel. Old Sultan could 



find no second except the Cat, who had only three legs. When 
they came out the poor Cat hobbled along, lifting up its tail 
with pain. 

The Wolf and his second were already in position ; but when 
they saw their opponent coming they thought that he was 
bringing a sword, for they took the outstretched tail of the 
Cat for one. And because the poor animal hobbled on three 
legs, they thought nothing less than that it was picking up 
stones to throw at them every time it stooped. Then both 
became frightened ; the Boar crept away into a thicket, and the 
Wolf jumped up into a tree. The Dog and the Cat were 
astonished, when they arrived, at seeing no one about. The 
Boar, however, had not been able to conceal himself completely; 
his ears still stuck out. While the Cat was looking round 
cautiously, the Boar twitched its ears ; the Cat, who thought 
that it was a mouse moving, sprang upon it, and began biting 
with a will. The Boar jumped up and ran away, calling out : 
' The guilty party is up in that tree.' The Cat and the Dog 
looked up and perceived the Wolf, who, ashamed of having 
shown himself such a coward, made peace with the Dog. 


The Straw, the Coal, and the Bean 

ONCE there was a poor old woman who lived in a 
village ; she had collected a bundle of beans, 
and was going to cook them. So she prepared a 
fire on her hearth, and to make it burn up quickly she lighted 
it with a handful of straw. When she threw the beans into 
the pot, one escaped her unnoticed and slipped on to the 
floor, where it lay by a straw. Soon after a glowing coal 
jumped out of the fire and joined the others. Then the Straw 
began, and said : ' Little friends, how came ye hither ? ' 

The Coal answered : ' I have happily escaped the fire ; 
and if I had not done so by force of will, my death would 
certainly have been a most cruel one ; I should have been 
burnt to a cinder.' 

The Bean said : ' I also have escaped so far with a whole 
skin ; but if the old woman had put me into the pot, I should 
have been pitilessly boiled down to broth like my comrades.' 

' Would a better fate have befallen me, then ? ' asked the 
Straw ; ' the old woman packed all my brothers into the fire 
and smoke, sixty of them all done for at once. Fortunately, 
I slipped through her fingers.' 

4 What are we to do now, though ? ' asked the Coal. 

' My opinion is,' said the Bean, ' that, as we have escaped 
death, we must all keep together like good comrades ; and so 
that we may run no further risks, we had better quit the 

This proposal pleased both the others, and they set out 
together. Before long they came to a little stream, and, as 
there was neither path nor bridge, they did not know how to 
get over. The Straw at last had an idea, and said, ' I will 



throw myself over and then you can walk across upon me like 
a bridge.' So the Straw stretched himself across from one 
side to the other, and the Coal, which was of a fiery nature, 
tripped gaily over the newly-built bridge. But when it got 
to the middle and heard the water rushing below, it was 
frightened, and remained speechless, not daring to go any 
further. The Straw beginning to burn, broke in two and fell 
into the stream ; the Coal, falling with it, fizzled out in the 
water. The Bean, who had cautiously remained on the bank, 
could not help laughing over the whole business, and, having 
begun, could not stop, but laughed till she split her sides. 
Now, all would have been up with her had not, fortunately, 
a wandering tailor been taking a rest by the stream. As he 
had a sympathetic heart, he brought out a needle and thread 
and stitched her up again ; but, as he used black thread, all 
beans have a black seam to this day. 


Clever Elsa 

THERE was once a Man who had a daughter called 
Clever Elsa. When she was grown up, her Father 
said : ' We must get her married.' 

' Yes,' said her Mother ; ' if only somebody came who 
would have her.' 

At last a suitor, named Hans, came from a distance. He 
made an offer for her on condition that she really was as clever 
as she was said to be. 

' Oh ! ' said her Father, ' she is a long-headed lass.' 

And her Mother said : * She can see the wind blowing in the 
street, and hear the flies coughing.' 

' Well,' said Hans, ' if she is not really clever, I won't have 

When they were at dinner, her Mother said : ' Elsa, go to 
the cellar and draw some beer.' 

Clever Elsa took the jug from the nail on the wall, and 
went to the cellar, clattering the lid as she went, to pass the 
time. When she reached the cellar she placed a chair near the 
cask so that she need not hurt her back by stooping. Then 
she put down the jug before her and turned the tap. And 
while the beer was running, so as not to be idle, she let her eyes 
rove all over the place, looking this way and that. 

Suddenly she discovered a pickaxe just above her head, 
which a mason had by chance left hanging among the rafters. 

Clever Elsa burst into tears, and said : ' If I marry Hans, 
and we have a child, when it grows big, and we send it down 
to draw beer, the pickaxe will fall on its head and kill it.' So 
there she sat crying and lamenting loudly at the impending 



The others sat upstairs waiting for the beer, but Clever 
Elsa never came back. 

Then the Mistress said to her Servant : ' Go down to the 
cellar, and see why Elsa does not come back.' 

The Maid went, and found Elsa sitting by the cask, weeping 
bitterly. ' Why, Elsa, whatever are you crying for ? ' she 

' Alas ! ' she answered, ' have I not cause to cry ? If I 
marry Hans, and we have a child, when he grows big, and 
we send him down to draw beer, perhaps that pickaxe will 
fall on his head and kill him.' 

Then the Maid said : ' What a Clever Elsa we have ' ; and 
she, too, sat down by Elsa, and began to cry over the 

After a time, as the Maid did not come back, and they 
were growing very thirsty, the Master said to the Serving- 
man : ' Go down to the cellar and see what has become of 
Elsa and the Maid.' 

The Man went down, and there sat Elsa and the Maid 
weeping together. So he said : ' What are you crying for ? ' 

' Alas ! ' said Elsa, ' have I not enough to cry for ? If I 
marry Hans, and we have a child, and we send it when it is 
big enough into the cellar to draw beer, the pickaxe will fall 
on its head and kill it.' 

The Man said : ' What a Clever Elsa we have f ; and he, 
too, joined them and howled in company. 

The people upstairs waited a long time for the Serving- 
man, but as he did not come back, the Husband said to his 
Wife : ' Go down to the cellar yourself, and see what has 
become of Elsa.' 

So the Mistress went down and found all three making loud 
lamentations, and she asked the cause of their grief. 

Then Elsa told her that her future child would be killed 
by the falling of the pickaxe when it was big enough to be 
sent to draw the beer. Her Mother said with the others : 
' Did you ever see such a Clever Elsa as we have ? ' 


Her Husband upstairs waited 
some time, but as his Wife did not 
return, and his thirst grew greater, 
he said : ' I must go to the cellar 
myself to see what has become of 

But when he got to the cellar, 
and found all the others sitting 
together in tears, caused by 
the fear that a child which 
Elsa might one day have, 
if she married Hans, might 
be killed by the falling 
of the pickaxe, when it 
went to draw beer, he too 

'What a Clever Elsa 
we have 1 ' 

Then he, too, sat down 

and added his lamentations 

to theirs. 

The bridegroom waited 

alone upstairs for a long 

time ; then, as nobody came 

back, he thought: 'They 

must be waiting for me 

down there, I must go and 

see what they are doing.' 
So down he went, and 

when he found them all 

crying and lamenting in 

a heart-breaking manner, 

each one louder than the 

other, he asked : ' What 

misfortune can possibly 

have happened ? ' 

When she saw the pick-axe jut above her 
head, Clever Elsa burst into teart. 



' Alas, dear Hans ! ' said Elsa, ' if we marry and have a 
child, and we send it to draw beer when it is big enough, it 
may be killed if that pickaxe left hanging there were to fall 
on its head. Have we not cause to lament ? ' 

' Well,' said Hans, ' more wits than this I do not need ; 
and as you are such a Clever Elsa I will have you for my wife.' 

He took her by the hand, led her upstairs, and they 
celebrated the marriage. 

When they had been married for a while, Hans said : 
' Wife, I am going to work to earn some money ; do you go 
into the fields and cut the corn, so that we may have some 

' Yes, my dear Hans ; I will go at once.' 

When Hans had gone out, she made some good broth and 
took it into the field with her. 

When she got there, she said to herself : ' What shall I do, 
reap first, or eat first ? I will eat first.' 

So she finished up the bowl of broth, which she found very 
satisfying, so she said again : ' Which shall I do, sleep first, 
or reap first ? I will sleep first.' So she lay down among the 
corn and went to sleep. 

Hans had been home a long time, and no Elsa came, so he 
said : ' What a Clever Elsa I have. She is so industrious, 
she does not even come home to eat.' 

But as she still did not come, and it was getting dusk, Hans 
went out to see how much corn she had cut. He found that 
she had not cut any at all, and that she was lying there fast 
asleep. Hans hurried home to fetch a fowler's net with little 
bells on it, and this he hung around her without waking her. 
Then he ran home, shut the house door, and sat down to 

At last, when it was quite dark, Clever Elsa woke up, and 
when she got up there was such a jangling, and the bells jingled 
at every step she took. She was terribly frightened, and 
wondered whether she really was Clever Elsa or not, and said : 
' Is it me, or is it not me ? ' 


But she did not know what to answer, and stood for a time 
doubtful. At last she thought : ' I will go home, and ask if 
it is me, or if it is not me ; they will be sure to know.' 

She ran to the house, but found the door locked ; so she 
knocked at the window, and cried : ' Hans, is Elsa at home ? ' 

' Yes,' answered Hans, ' she is I ' 

Then she started and cried : ' Alas I then it is not me,' 
and she went to another door ; but when the people heard the 
jingling of the bells, they would not open the door, and no- 
where would they take her in. 

So she ran away out. of the village, and was never seen 


The Dog and the Sparrow 

THERE was once a sheep-dog who had not got a kind 
master, but one who left him to suffer from hunger. 
When he could bear it no longer, he went sadly 
away. On the road he met a Sparrow, who said, ' Brother 
Dog, why are you so sad ? ' 

On the road he met a Sparrow. 

The Dog answered, ' Because I am hungry and I have 
nothing to eat.' 

' Then,' said the Sparrow, ' Brother Dog, come with me to 
the town, and I will satisfy your hunger.' 

So they went to the town together, and when they came to 


a butcher's shop, the Sparrow said to the Dog, ' Stay where 
you are out there and I will peck down a piece of meat.' He 
perched upon the stall, and looked about to see that he was 
not noticed ; then he pecked, pulled, and pushed a piece of 
meat lying near the edge, till at last it fell to the ground. 
The Dog seized it and ran off with it to a corner, where he 
devoured it. Then the Sparrow said to him, ' Now come with 
me to another shop, and I will pull down another piece so that 
vou may have enough.' 

When the Dog had gobbled up the second piece of meat, 
the Sparrow said, ' Brother Dog, have you had enough ? ' 

' Yes, I have had enough meat,' replied the Dog ; ' but I 
haven't had any bread.' 

' Oh, you shall have some bread too,' said the Sparrow. 
4 Come with me.' And then he led him to a baker's shop, 
where he pecked at a couple of rolls till they fell down. Then, 
as the Dog still wanted more, he took him to another shop 
where he pulled down some more bread. 

When that was consumed, the Sparrow said, ' Brother Dog, 
is your hunger satisfied ? ' 

' Yes,' he answered ; ' now let us go and walk about outside 
the town for a bit.' 

So they both went out on to the high-road. Now it was 
very warm weather, and when they had walked a little way 
the Dog said, ' I am tired, and I want to go to sleep.' 

' Oh, by all means,' answered the Sparrow ; ' I will sit 
upon this branch in the meantime.' 

So the Dog lay down upon the road and fell fast asleep. 
While he lay there sleeping, a Carter came along driving a 
wagon with three horses. The wagon was laden with two 
casks of wine. The Sparrow saw that he was not going to 
turn aside, but was going on in the track in which the Dog 
lay, and he called out, ' Carter, don't do it, or I will ruin you ! ' 

But the Carter grumbled to himself, ' You won't ruin me,' 
cracked his whip, and drove the wheels of his wagon right over 
the Dog and killed him. 



The Sparrow cried out after him, ' Carter, you have killed 
my brother Dog ; it will cost you your wagon and your team.' 

' My wagon and my team indeed, what harm can you do 
me ? ' asked the Carter, as he drove on. The Sparrow crept 
under the tarpaulin and pecked at the bunghole of one of the 
casks till the bung came out, and all the wine trickled away 
without the Carter's being aware of it. When he looked 
round and saw the wine dripping from the wagon, he examined 
the casks and found that one was empty. 

' Alas, poor man that I am ! ' he cried. 

' Not poor enough yet,' said the Sparrow, as he flew on to 
the head of one of the horses and pecked out its eyes. When 
the Carter saw what he was doing, he seized his chopper to 
throw it at the Sparrow ; but the bird flew away, and the 
chopper hit the horse on the head, and he dropped down dead. 

' Alas, poor man that I am ! ' he cried. 

' Not poor enough yet,' said the Sparrow. As the Carter 
drove on with his two horses, the Sparrow again crept under 
the tarpaulin and pecked the bung out of the second cask, 
so that all the wine ran out. 

When the Carter perceived it, he cried again, ' Alas, poor 
man that I am 1 ' 

But the Sparrow answered, ' Not poor enough yet ' ; and 
he seated himself on the head of the second horse and pecked 
its eyes out. The Carter ran up with his big chopper and 
struck at him ; but the Sparrow flew away, and the blow hit 
the horse and killed it. 

' Alas, poor man that I am ! ' cried the Carter. 

* Not poor enough yet,' said the Sparrow, as he perched 
on the head of the third horse and pecked out its eyes. In 
his rage, the Carter struck out at the Sparrow with his chopper 
without taking aim, missed the Sparrow, but hit his last 
horse on the head, and it fell down dead. 

4 Alas, poor man that I am ! ' 

1 Not poor enough yet,' said the Sparrow. * Now, I will 
bring poverty to your home ' ; and he flew away. 


The Carter had to leave his wagon standing, and he went 
home full of rage and fury. 

' Ah ! ' he said to his wife, ' what misfortunes I have had 
to-day ; the wine has all run out of the casks, and my three 
horses are dead.' 

' Alas ! husband,' she answered, ' whatever kind of evil 
bird is this which has come into our house. He has assembled 
all the birds in the world, and they have settled on our maize 
and they are eating it clean up.' 

He went up into the loft, where thousands and thousands 
of birds were sitting on the floor. They had eaten up all the 
maize, and the Sparrow sat in the middle of them. 

Then the Carter cried out, ' Alas, poor man that I am ! ' 

4 Not poor enough,' answered the Sparrow, ' Carter, it will 
cost you your life yet ' ; and he flew away. 

Now the Carter, having lost all that he possessed, went 
downstairs and sat down beside the stove, very angry and 
ill-tempered. But the Sparrow sat outside the window and 
cried, ' Carter, it will cost you your life.' 

The Carter seized his chopper and threw it at the Sparrow, 
but it only smashed the window and did not hit the bird. 

Then the Sparrow hopped in and perched on the stove, and 
cried, ' Carter, it will cost you your life.' 

The Carter, mad, and blind with rage, smashed the stove 
to atoms, but the Sparrow fluttered hither and thither till 
all the furniture, the little looking-glass, the bench, the 
table, and at last the very walls of his house were destroyed, 
but without ever hitting the Sparrow. At last he caught it 
in his hand. 

' Then,' said his wife, ' shall I kill it ? ' 

' No,' he cried ; ' that would be too good for it ; it shall 
die a much worse death. I will swallow it.' And he took it 
and gulped it down whole. 

But the bird began to flutter about in his inside, and at 
last fluttered up into the man's mouth. He stretched out his 
head and cried, ' Carter, it will cost you your life yet.' 



The Carter handed his chopper to his wife and said, ' Wife, 
kill the bird in my mouth.' The woman hit out, but she 
aimed badly and hit the Carter on the head, and down he 
fell, dead. 

The Sparrow, however, flew out and right away. 

The Twelve 
Dancing Princesses 

THERE was once a King who had twelve daughters, 
each more beautiful than the other. They slept 
together in a hall where their beds stood close to 
one another ; and at night, when they had gone to bed, the 
King locked the door and bolted it. But when he unlocked 
it in the morning, he noticed that their shoes had been danced 
to pieces, and nobody could explain how it happened. So the 
King sent out a proclamation saying that any one who could 
discover where the Princesses did their night's dancing should 
choose one of them to be his wife and should reign after his 
death ; but whoever presented himself, and failed to make the 
discovery after three days and nights, was to forfeit his life. 

A Prince soon presented himself and offered to take the 
risk. He was well received, and at night was taken into a 
room adjoining the hall where the Princesses slept. His 
bed was made up there, and he was to watch and see where 
they went to dance ; so that they could not do anything, or 
go anywhere else, the door of his room was left open too. 
But the eyes of the King's son grew heavy, and he fell asleep. 
When he woke up in the morning all the twelve had been 
dancing, for the soles of their shoes were full of holes. The 
second and third evenings passed with the same results, and 
then the Prince found no mercy, and his head was cut off. 



Many others came after him and offered to take the risk, but 
they all had to lose their lives. 

Now it happened that a poor Soldier, who had been wounded 
and could no longer serve, found himself on the road to the 
town where the King lived. There he fell in with an old 
woman who asked him where he intended to go. 

' I really don't know, myself,' he said ; and added, in fun, 
' I should like to discover where the King's daughters dance 
their shoes into holes, and after that to become King.' 

' That is not so difficult,' said the old woman. ' You must 
not drink the wine which will be brought to you in the evening, 
but must pretend to be fast asleep.' Whereupon she gave 
him a short cloak, saying : ' When you wear this you will 
be invisible, and then you can slip out after the Twelve 

As soon as the Soldier heard this good advice he took it up 
seriously, plucked up courage, appeared before the King, 
and offered himself as suitor. He was as well received as 
the others, and was dressed in royal garments. 

In the evening, when bed-time came, he was conducted 
to the ante-room. As he was about to go to bed the eldest 
Princess appeared, bringing him a cup of wine; but he had 
fastened a sponge under his chin and let the wine run down 
into it, so that he did not drink one drop. Then he lay down, 
and when he had been quiet a little while he began to snore as 
though in the deepest sleep. 

The Twelve Princesses heard him, and laughed. The 
eldest said : ' He, too, must forfeit his life.' 

Then they got up, opened cupboards, chests, and cases, and 
brought out their beautiful dresses. They decked themselves 
before the glass, skipping about and revelling in the prospect 
of the dance. Only the youngest sister said : ' I don't know 
what it is. You may rejoice, but I feel so strange ; a mis- 
fortune is certainly hanging over us.' 

' You are a little goose,' answered the eldest ; ' you are 
always frightened. Have you forgotten how many Princes 


have come here in vain ? Why, I need not have given the 
Soldier a sleeping draught at all ; the blockhead would never 
have awakened.' . 

When they were all ready they looked at the Soldier ; but 
his eyes were shut and he did not stir. So they thought they 
would soon be quite safe. Then the eldest went up to one of 
the beds and knocked on it ; it sank into the earth, and they 
descended through the opening, one after another, the eldest 

The Soldier, who had noticed everything, did not hesitate 
long, but threw on his cloak and went down behind the 
youngest. Half-way down he trod on her dress. She was 
frightened, and said : ' What was that ? who is holding on to 
my dress ? ' 

' Don't be so foolish. You must have caught on a nail,' 
said the eldest. Then they went right down, and when they 
got quite underground, they stood in a marvellously beautiful 
avenue of trees ; all the leaves were silver, and glittered and 

The Soldier thought, ' I must take away some token with 
me.' And as he broke off a twig, a sharp crack came from 
the tree. 

The youngest cried out, ' All is not well ; did you hear that 
sound ? ' 

' Those are triumphal salutes, because we shall soon have 
released our Princes,' said the eldest. 

Next they came to an avenue where all the leaves were of 
gold, and, at last, into a third, where they were of shining 
diamonds. From both these he broke off a twig, and there 
was a crack each time which made the youngest Princess start 
with terror ; but the eldest maintained that the sounds were 
only triumphal salutes. They went on faster, and came to a 
great lake. Close to the bank lay twelve little boats, and in 
every boat sat a handsome Prince. They had expected the 
Twelve Princesses, and each took one with him ; but the 
Soldier seated himself by the youngest. 



Then said the Prince, ' I don't know why, but the boat is 
much heavier to-day, and I am obliged to row with all my 
strength to get it along.' 

' I wonder why it is,' said the youngest, ' unless, perhaps, 
it is the hot weather ; it is strangely hot.' 

On the opposite side of the lake stood a splendid brightly- 
lighted castle, from which came the sound of the joyous music 
of trumpets and drums. They rowed across, and every Prince 
danced with his love ; and the Soldier danced too, unseen. 
If one of the Princesses held a cup of wine he drank out of it, 
so that it was empty when she lifted it to her lips. This 
frightened the youngest one, but the eldest always silenced her. 
They danced till three next morning, when their shoes were 
danced into holes, and they were obliged to stop. The 
Princes took them back across the lake, and this time the 
Soldier took his seat beside the eldest. On the bank they said 
farewell to their Princes, and promised to come again the next 
night. When they got to the steps, the Soldier ran on ahead, 
lay down in bed, and when the twelve came lagging by, 
slowly and wearily, he began to snore again, very loud, so 
that they said, ' We are quite safe as far as he is concerned.' 
Then they took off their beautiful dresses, put them away, 
placed the worn-out shoes under their beds, and lay down. 

The next morning the Soldier determined to say nothing, 
but to see the wonderful doings again. So he went with them 
the second and third nights. Everything was just the same 
as the first time, and they danced each time till their shoes 
were in holes ; but the third time the Soldier took away a 
wine-cup as a token. 

When the appointed hour came for his answer, he took 
the three twigs and the cup with him and went before the 
King. The Twelve Princesses stood behind the door listening 
to hear what he would say. When the King put the question, 
' Where did my daughters dance their shoes to pieces in the 
night ? ' he answered : ' With twelve Princes in an under- 
ground castle.' Then he produced the tokens. 

On the opposite side of the lake stood a spleiidid brightly-lighted Castle. 


The King sent for his daughters and asked them whether 
the Soldier had spoken the truth. As they saw that they were 
betrayed, and would gain nothing by lies, they were obliged 
to admit all. Thereupon the King asked the Soldier which 
one he would choose as his wife. He answered : ' I am no 
longer young, give me the eldest.' 

So the wedding was celebrated that very day, and the 
kingdom was promised to him on the King's death. But 
for every night which the Princes had spent in dancing with 
the Princesses a day was added to their time of enchantment. 

The Fisherman and his Wife 

THERE was once a Fisherman, who lived with his 
Wife in a miserable little hovel close to the sea. 
He went to fish every day, and he fished and fished, 
and at last one day, as he was sitting looking deep down into 
the shining water, he felt something on his line. When he 
hauled it up there was a great Flounder on the end of the 
line. The Flounder said to him, * Listen, Fisherman, I beg 
you not to kill me : I am no common Flounder, I am an 
enchanted prince ! What good will it do you to kill me ? 



I shan't be good to eat ; put me back into the water, and leave 
me to swim about.' 

' Ho ! ho ! ' said the Fisherman, ' you need not make so 
many words about it. I am quite ready to put back a Flounder 
that can talk.' And so saying, he put back the Flounder into 
the shining water, and it sank down to the bottom, leaving 
a streak of blood behind it. 

Then the Fisherman got up and went back to his Wife in 
the hovel. ' Husband,' she said, ' hast thou caught nothing 
to-day ? ' 

' No,' said the Man ; ' all I caught was one Flounder, and 
he said he was an enchanted prince, so I let him go swim again.' 

' Didst thou not wish for anything then ? ' asked the Good- 

' No,' said the Man ; ' what was there to wish for ? ' 

' Alas ! ' said his Wife, ' isn't it bad enough always to live 
in this wretched hovel ! Thou mightst at least have wished 
for a nice clean cottage. Go back and call him, tell him I 
want a pretty cottage : he will surely give us that.' 

' Alas ! ' said the Man, ' what am I to go back there for ? ' 

' Well,' said the Woman, ' it was thou who didst catch him 
and let him go again ; for certain he will do that for thee. 
Be off now ! ' 

The Man was still not very willing to go, but he did not want 
to vex his Wife, and at last he went back to the sea. 

He found the sea no longer bright and shining, but dull and 
green. He stood by it and said 

' Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Prythee, hearken unto me : 
My Wife, Ilsebil, must have her own will, 
And sends me to beg a boon of thee. 1 

The Flounder came swimming up, and said, ' Well, what 
do you want ? ' 

' Alas,' said the Man, * I had to call you, for my Wife said 
I ought to have wished for something as I caught you. She 


doesn't want to live in our miserable hovel any longer, she 
wants a pretty cottage.' 

' Go home again then,' said the Flounder, ' she has her 
wish fully.' 

The Man went home and found his Wife no longer in the old 
hut, but a pretty little cottage stood in its place, and his Wife 
was sitting on a bench by the door. 

She took him by the hand, and said, ' Come and look in 
here isn't this much better ? ' 

They went inside and found a pretty sitting-room, and a 
bedroom with a bed in it, a kitchen and a larder furnished 
with everything of the best in tin and brass and every 
possible requisite. Outside there was a little yard with 
chickens and ducks, and a little garden full of vegetables and 

' Look ! ' said the Woman, ' is not this nice ? ' 

' Yes,' said the Man, ' and so let it remain. We can live 
here very happily.' 

' We will see about that,' said the Woman. With that they 
ate something and went to bed. 

Everything went well for a week or more, and then said the 
Wife, ' Listen, husband, this cottage is too cramped, and the 
garden is too small. The Flounder could have given us a bigger 
house. I want to live in a big stone castle. Go to the 
Flounder, and tell him to give us a castle.' 

' Alas, Wife,' said the Man, ' the cottage is good enough 
for us : what should we do with a castle ? ' 

' Never mind,' said his Wife, * do thou but go to the 
Flounder, and he will manage it.' 

' Nay, Wife,' said the Man, ' the Flounder gave us the 
cottage. I don't want to go back ; as likely as not he '11 be 

' Go, all the same,' said the Woman. ' He can do it easily 
enough, and willingly into the bargain. Just go 1 ' 

The Man's heart was heavy, and he was very unwilling to 
go. He said to himself, ' It 's not right.' But at last he went. 
D 49 


He found the sea was no longer green ; it was still calm, 
but dark violet and grey. He stood by it and said 

' Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Prythee, hearken unto me : 
My Wife, Ilsebil, must have her own will, 
And sends me to beg a boon of thee. 1 

' Now, what do you want ? ' said the Flounder. 

' Alas,' said the Man, half scared, ' my wife wants a big 
stone castle.' 

' Go home again,' said the Flounder, ' she is standing at the 
door of it.' 

Then the man went away thinking he would find no house, 
but when he got back he found a great stone palace, and his 
Wife standing at the top of the steps, waiting to go in. 

She took him by the hand and said, ' Come in with me.' 

With that they went in and found a great hall paved with 
marble slabs, and numbers of servants in attendance, who 
opened the great doors for them. The walls were hung with 
beautiful tapestries, and the rooms were furnished with golden 
chairs and tables, while rich carpets covered the floors, and 
crystal chandeliers hung from the ceilings. The tables 
groaned under every kind of delicate food and the most costly 
wines. Outside the house there was a great courtyard, with 
stabling for horses, and cows, and many fine carriages. 
Beyond this there was a great garden filled with the loveliest 
flowers, and fine fruit-trees. There was also a park, half a 
mile long, and in it were stags and hinds, and hares, and 
everything of the kind one could wish for. 

' Now,' said the Woman, ' is not this worth having ? ' 

' Oh yes,' said the Man ; ' and so let it remain. We will 
live in this beautiful palace and be content.' 

' We will think about that,' said his Wife, ' and sleep upon 

With that they went to bed. 

Next morning the Wife woke up first ; day was just dawn- 


ing, and from her bed she could see the beautiful country 
around her. Her husband was still asleep, but she pushed 
him with her elbow, and said, ' Husband, get up and peep out 
of the window. See here, now, could we not be King over 
all this land ? Go to the Flounder. We will be King.' 

' Alas, Wife,' said the Man, ' what should we be King for ? 
I don't want to be King.' 

' Ah,' said his Wife, ' if thou wilt not be King, I will. Go 
to the Flounder. I will be King.' 

' Alas, Wife,' said the Man, ' whatever dost thou want to be 
King for ? I don't like to tell him.' 

' Why not ? ' said the Woman. ' Go thou must. I will 
be King.' 

So the Man went ; but he was quite sad because his Wife 
would be King. 

' It is not right,' he said ; * it is not right.' 

When he reached the sea, he found it dark, grey, and rough, 
and evil smelling. He stood there and said 

' Flounder, Flounder in the gea, 
Prythee, hearken unto me 
My Wife, Ilsebil, must have her own will, 
And sends me to beg a boon of thee.' 

* Now, what does she want ? ' said the Flounder. 

* Alas,' said the Man, ' she wants to be King now.' 

4 Go back. She is King already,' said the Flounder. 

So the Man went back, and when he reached the palace 
he found that it had grown much larger, and a great tower 
had been added with handsome decorations. There was a 
sentry at the door, and numbers of soldiers were playing 
drums and trumpets. As soon as he got inside the house, 
he found everything was marble and gold ; and the hangings 
were of velvet, with great golden tassels. The doors of the 
saloon were thrown wide open, and he saw the whole court 
assembled. His Wife was sitting on a lofty throne of gold and 



diamonds ; she wore a golden crown, and carried in one hand 
a sceptre of pure gold. On each side of her stood her ladies 
in a long row, every one a head shorter than the next. 

He stood before her, and said : ' Alas, Wife, art thou now 

' Yes,' she said ; ' now I am King.' 

He stood looking at her for some time, and then he said : 
' Ah, Wife, it is a fine thing for thee to be King ; now we will 
not wish to be anything more.' 

' Nay, husband,' she answered, quite uneasily ; ' I find the 
time hang very heavy on my hands. I can't bear it any 
longer. Go back to the Flounder. King I am, but I must 
also be Emperor.' 

' Alas, Wife,' said the Man, ' why dost thou now want to be 
Emperor ? ' 

' Husband,' she answered, ' go to the Flounder. Emperor 
I will be.' 

' Alas, Wife,' said the Man, ' Emperor he can't make thee, 
and I won't ask him. There is only one Emperor in the 
country ; and Emperor the Flounder cannot make thee, that 
he can't.' 

' What ? ' said the Woman. ' I am King, and thou art 
but my husband. To him thou must go, and that right 
quickly. If he can make a King, he can also make an 
Emperor. Emperor I will be, so go quickly.' 

He had to go, but he was quite frightened. And as he went, 
he thought, ' This won't end well ; Emperor is too shameless. 
The Flounder will make an end of the whole thing.' 

With that he came to the sea, but now he found it quite 
black, and heaving up from below in great waves. It tossed 
to and fro, and a sharp wind blew over it, and the man 
trembled. So he stood there, and said 

' Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Prythee, hearken unto me : 
My Wife, Ilsebil, must have her own will, 
And sends me to beg a boon of thee.' 



' What does she want now ? ' said the Flounder. 

' Alas, Flounder,' he said, ' my Wife wants to be Emperor.' 

' Go back,' said the Flounder. ' She is Emperor.' 

So the man went back, and when he got to the door, he 
found that the whole palace was made of polished marble, 
with alabaster figures and golden decorations. Soldiers 
marched up and down before the doors, blowing their 
trumpets and beating their drums. Inside the palace, counts, 
barons, and dukes walked about as attendants, and they 
opened to him the doors, which were of pure gold. 

He went in, and saw his Wife sitting on a huge throne made 
of solid gold. It was at least two miles high. She had on 
her head a great golden crown set with diamonds three yards 
high. In one hand she held the sceptre, and in the other 
the orb of empire. On each side of her stood the gentlemen- 
at-arms in two rows, each one a little smaller than the other, 
from giants two miles high down to the tiniest dwarf no bigger 
than my little finger. She was surrounded by princes and 

Her husband stood still, and said : * Wife, art thou now 
Emperor ? ' 

' Yes,' said she ; ' now I am Emperor.' 

Then he looked at her for some time, and said : ' Alas, 
Wife, how much better off art thou for being Emperor ? ' 

' Husband,' she said, ' what art thou standing there for ? 
Now I am Emperor, I mean to be Pope ! Go back to the 

' Alas, Wife,' said the Man, ' what wilt thou not want ? 
Pope thou canst not be. There is only one Pope in Christen- 
dom. That 's more than the Flounder can do.' 

' Husband,' she said, ' Pope I will be ; so go at once. I must 
be Pope this very day.' 

' No, Wife,' he said, ' I dare not tell him. It 's no good ; 
it 's too monstrous altogether. The Flounder cannot make 
thee Pope.' 

' Husband,' said the Woman, ' don't talk nonsense. If 



he can make an Emperor, he can make a Pope. Go immedi- 
ately. I am Emperor, and thou art but my husband, and 
thou must obey.' 

So he was frightened, and went ; but he was quite dazed. 
He shivered and shook, and his knees trembled. 

A great wind arose over the land, the clouds flew across the 
sky, and it grew as dark as night; the leaves fell from the 
trees, and the water foamed and dashed upon the shore. In 
the distance the ships were being tossed to and fro on the 
waves, and he heard them firing signals of distress. There 
was still a little patch of blue in the sky among the dark 
clouds, but towards the south they were red and heavy, as in 
a bad storm. In despair, he stood and said 

' Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Prythee, hearken unto me : 
My Wife, Ilsebil, must have her own will, 
And sends me to beg a boon of thee.' 

' Now, what does she want ? ' said the Flounder. 

' Alas,' said the Man, ' she wants to be Pope ! ' 

' Go back. Pope she is,' said the Flounder. 

So back he went, and he found a great church surrounded 
with palaces. He pressed through the crowd, and inside he 
found thousands and thousands of lights, and his Wife, 
entirely clad in gold, was sitting on a still higher throne, with 
three golden crowns upon her head, and she was surrounded 
with priestly state. On each side of her were two rows of 
candles, the biggest as thick as a tower, down to the tiniest 
little taper. Kings and Emperors were on their knees before 
her, kissing her shoe. 

' Wife,' said the Man, looking at her, ' art thou now Pope ? ' 

* Yes,' said she ; ' now I am Pope.' 

So there he stood gazing at her, and it was like looking at a 
shining sun. 

' Alas, Wife,' he said, ' art thou better off for being Pope ? ' 
At first she sat as stiff as a post, without stirring. Then he 


said : ' Now, Wife, be content with being Pope ; higher thou 
canst not go.' 

' I will think about that,' said the Woman, and with that 
they both went to bed. Still she was not content, and could 
not sleep for her inordinate desires. The Man slept well and 
soundly, for he had walked about a great deal in the day ; 
but his Wife could think of nothing but what further grandeur 

'Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Prythee, hearken unto me.' 

she could demand. When the dawn reddened the sky she 
raised herself up in bed and looked out of the window, and 
when she saw the sun rise, she said : 

' Ha ! can I not cause the sun and the moon to rise ? 
Husband ! ' she cried, digging her elbow into his side, ' wake 
up and go to the Flounder. I will be Lord of the Universe.' 

Her husband, who was still more than half asleep, was so 



shocked that he fell out of bed. He thought he must have 
heard wrong. He rubbed his eyes, and said : 

* Alas, Wife, what didst thou say ? ' 

' Husband,' she said, ' if I cannot be Lord of the Universe, 
and cause the sun and moon to set and rise, I shall not be able 
to bear it. I shall never have another happy moment.' 

She looked at him so wildly that it caused a shudder to run 
through him. 

4 Alas, Wife,' he said, falling on his knees before her, ' the 
Flounder can't do that. Emperor and Pope he can make, 
but that is indeed beyond him. I pray thee, control thyself 
and remain Pope.' 

Then she flew into a terrible rage. Her hair stood on end ; 
she kicked him and screamed 

* I won't bear it any longer ; wilt thou go ! ' 

Then he pulled on his trousers and tore away like a madman. 
Such a storm was raging that he could hardly keep his feet : 
houses and trees quivered and swayed, and mountains trembled, 
and the rocks rolled into the sea. The sky was pitchy black ; 
it thundered and lightened, and the sea ran in black waves 
mountains high, crested with white foam. He shrieked out, 
but could hardly make himself heard 

' Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Prythee, hearken unto me : 
My Wife, Ilsebil, must have her own will, 
And sends me to beg a boon of thee.' 

' Now, what does she want ? ' asked the Flounder. 
' Alas,' he said, ' she wants to be Lord of the Universe.' 
' Now she must go back to her old hovel ; and there she is.' 
So there they are to this very day. 


The Wren and the Bear 

ONCE upon a time, in the summer, a Bear and a Wolf 
were taking a walk in a wood when the Bear heard 
a bird singing most beautifully, and he said, 
' Brother Wolf, what kind of bird is that singing so beauti- 
fully ? ' 

' That is the King of the birds, and we must bow down to it.' 

But really it was a Wren. 

' If that is so,' said the Bear, ' I should like to see his royal 
palace. Come, you must take me to it.' 

' That 's not so easy,' caid the Wolf. ' You must wait till 
the Queen comes.' 

Soon after, the Queen made her appearance, bringing food 
in her beak, and the King came with her to feed their little 
ones. The Bear would have liked to go in at once, but the 
Wolf held him by the sleeve, and said, ' No ; now you must 
wait till the King and Queen fly away again.' 

So they marked the opening of the nest, and trudged on. 
But the Bear had no rest till he could see the royal palace, 
and before long he went back. 

The King and the Queen had gone out again. He peeped 
in, and saw five or six young ones lying in the nest. 

' Is that the royal palace ? ' cried the Bear. ' What a 
miserable place ! And do you mean to say that you are royal 
children ? You must be changelings ! ' 

When the young Wrens heard this, they were furious, and 
shrieked, ' No, indeed we 're not. Our parents are honest 
people ; we must have this out with you.' 

The Bear and the Wolf were very much frightened. They 
turned round and ran home to their dens. 



But the young Wrens continued to shriek and scream aloud ; 
and when their parents came back with more food, they said, 
* We won't touch so much as the leg of a fly, even if we starve, 
till you tell us whether we are really your lawful children or 
not. The Bear has been here calling us names.' 

Then said the old King, ' Only be quiet, and this shall be 
seen to.' 

Thereupon he and his wife the Queen flew off to the Bear 
in his den, and called in to him, ' Old Bruin, why have you 
been calling our children names ? It will turn out badly 
for you, and it will lead to a bloody war between us.' 

So war was declared, and all the four-footed animals were 
called together the ox, the ass, the cow, the stag, the roedeer, 
and every other creature on the earth. 

But the Wren called together every creature which flew in 
the air, not only birds both large and small, but also the gnats, 
the hornets, the bees, and the flies. 

When the time came for the war to begin, the Wren sent 
out scouts to discover where the commanding generals of the 
enemy were to be found. The gnats were the most cunning 
of all. They swarmed in the wood where the enemy were 
assembled, and at last they hid themselves under a leaf of the 
tree where the orders were being given. 

The Bear called the Fox up to him and said, ' You are the 
slyest of all the animals, Reynard. You shall be our general, 
and lead us.' 

' Very good,' said the Fox ; ' but what shall we have for a 
signal ? ' But nobody could think of anything. Then said 
the Fox, ' I have a fine, long, bushy tail, which almost looks 
like a red feather brush. When I hold my tail erect, things 
are going well, and you must march forward at once ; but 
if it droops, you must all run away as hard as ever you 

When the gnats heard this they flew straight home and told 
the Wrens every detail. 

When the day broke, all the four-footed animals came 


rushing to the spot where the battle was to take place. They 
came with such a tramping that the earth shook. 

The Wren and his army also came swarming through the 
air ; they fluttered and buzzed enough to terrify one. And 
then they made for one another. 

The Wren sent the Hornet down with orders to seat herself 
under the tail of the Fox and to sting him with all her might. 

When the Fox felt the first sting he quivered, and raised 
one leg in the air ; but he bore it bravely, and kept his tail 
erect. At the second sting he was forced to let it droop for a 
moment, but the third time he could bear it no longer ; he 
screamed, and down went his tail between his legs. When the 
animals saw this they thought all was lost, and off they ran 
helter-skelter, as fast as they could go, each to his own den. 

So the birds won the battle. 

When it was over the King and the Queen flew home to 
their children, and cried, ' Children, be happy ! Eat and 
drink to your hearts' content ; we have won the battle.' 

But the young Wrens said, ' We won't eat till the Bear 
comes here to make an apology, and says that we are really 
and truly your lawful children.' 

The Wren flew to the Bear's den, and cried, ' Old Bruin, 
you will have to come and apologise to my children for calling 
them names, or else you will have all your ribs broken.' 

So in great terror the Bear crept to the nest and apologised, 
and at last the young Wrens were satisfied, and they ate and 
drank and made merry till far into the night. 


The Frog Prince 

IN the olden time, when wishing was some good, there 
lived a King whose daughters were all beautiful, but 
the youngest was so lovely that even the sun, that 
looked on many things, could not but marvel when he shone 
upon her face. 

Near the King's palace there was a large dark forest, and in 
the forest, under an old lime-tree, was a well. When the day 
was very hot the Princess used to go into the forest and sit 
upon the edge of this cool well ; and when she was tired of 
doing nothing she would play with a golden ball, throwing 
it up in the air and catching it again, and this was her 
favourite game. Now on one occasion it so happened that the 
ball did not fall back into her hand stretched up to catch it, 
but dropped to the ground and rolled straight into the well. 
The Princess followed it with her eyes, but it disappeared, 
for the well was so very deep that it was quite impossible to 
see the bottom. Then she began to cry bitterly, and nothing 
would comfort her. 

As she was lamenting in this manner, some one called out to 
her, ' What is the matter, Princess ? Your lamentations 
would move the heart of a stone.' 

She looked round towards the spot whence the voice came, 
and saw a Frog stretching its broad, ugly face out of the water. 

' Oh, it 's you, is it, old splasher ? I am crying for my 
golden ball which has fallen into the water.' 

' Be quiet then, and stop crying,' answered the Frog. ' I 
know what to do ; but what will you give me if I get you back 
your plaything ? ' 

' Whatever you like, you dear old Frog,' she said. ' My 


clothes, my pearls and diamonds, or even the golden crown 
upon my head.' 

The Frog answered, ' I care neither for your clothes, your 
pearls and diamonds, nor even your golden crown ; but if 
you will be fond of me, and let me be your playmate, sit by 
you at table, eat out of your plate, drink out of your cup, and 
sleep in your little bed if you will promise to do all this, I 
will go down and fetch your ball.' 

' I will promise anything you like to ask, if only you will 
get me back my ball.' 

She thought, ' What is the silly old Frog chattering about ? 
He lives in the well, croaking with his mates, and he can't be 
the companion of a human being.' 

As soon as the Frog received her promise, he ducked his 
head under the water and disappeared. After a little while, 
back he came with the ball in his mouth, and threw it on to the 
grass beside her. 

The Princess was full of joy when she saw her pretty toy 
again, picked it up, and ran off with it. 

' Wait, wait,' cried the Frog. ' Take me with you ; I can't 
run as fast as you can.' 

But what was the good of his crying ' Croak, croak,' as loud 
as he could ? She did not listen to him, but hurried home, 
and forgot all about the poor Frog ; and he had to go back 
to his well. 

The next day, as she was sitting at dinner with the King 
and all the courtiers, eating out of her golden plate, something 
came flopping up the stairs, flip, flap, flip, flap. When it 
reached the top it knocked at the door, and cried : ' Youngest 
daughter of the King, you must let me in.' She ran to see 
who it was. When she opened the door and saw the Frog she 
shut it again very quickly, and went back to the table, for she 
was very much frightened. 

The King saw that her heart was beating very fast, and he 
said : ' My child, what is the matter ? Is there a giant at the 
door wanting to take you away ? ' 



' Oh no ! ' she said : ' it 's not a giant, but a hideous Frog.' 

* What does the Frog want with you ? ' 

' Oh, father dear, last night, when I was playing by the well 
in the forest, my golden ball fell into the water. And I cried, 
and the Frog got it out for me ; and then, because he insisted 
on it, I promised that he should be my playmate. But I 
never thought that he would come out of the water, but there 
he is, and he wants to come in to me.' 

He knocked at the door for the second time, and sang 

' Youngest daughter of the King, 
Take me up, I sing ; 
Know'st thou not what yesterday 
Thou to me didst say 
By the well in forest dell. 
Youngest daughter of the King, 
Take me up, I sing.' 

Then said the King, ' What you have promised you must 
perform. Go and open the door for him.' 

So she opened the door, and the Frog shuffled in, keeping 
close to her feet, till he reached her chair. Then he cried, 
' Lift me up beside you.' She hesitated, till the King ordered 
her to do it. When the Frog was put on the chair, he 
demanded to be placed upon the table, and then he said, 
' Push your golden plate nearer that we may eat together.' 
She did as he asked her, but very unwillingly, as could easily 
be seen. The Frog made a good dinner, but the Princess 
could not swallow a morsel. At last he said, ' I have eaten 
enough, and I am tired, carry me into your bedroom and 
arrange your silken bed, that we may go to sleep.' 

The Princess began to cry, for she was afraid of the clammy 
Frog, which she did not dare to touch, and which was now to 
sleep in her pretty little silken bed. But the King grew very 
angry, and said, ' You must not despise any one who has 
helped you in your need.' 

So she seized him with two fingers, and carried him upstairs, 
where she put him in a corner of her room. When she got into 


bed, he crept up to her, and said, ' I am tired, and I want to go 
to sleep as well as you. Lift me up, or I will tell your father.' 

She was very angry, picked him up, and threw him with 
all her might against the wall, saying, ' You may rest there 
as well as you can, you hideous Frog.' But when he fell to the 
ground, he was no longer a hideous Frog, but a handsome 
Prince with beautiful friendly eyes. 

And at her father's wish he became her beloved companion 
and husband. He told her that he had been bewitched by a 
wicked fairy, and nobody could have released him from the 
spells but she herself. 

Next morning, when the sun rose, a coach drove up drawn 
by eight milk-white horses, with white ostrich plumes on their 
heads, and golden harness. Behind stood faithful Henry, the 
Prince's body-servant. The faithful fellow had been so 
distressed when his master was changed into a Frog, that he 
had caused three iron bands to be placed round his heart, lest 
it should break from grief and pain. 

The coach had come to carry the young pair back into the 
Prince's own kingdom. The faithful Henry helped both of 
them into the coach and mounted again behind, delighted at 
his master's deliverance. 

They had only gone a little way when the Prince heard 
a cracking behind him, as if something were breaking. He 
turned round, and cried 

' " Henry, the coach is giving way ! " 
" No, Sir, the coach is safe, I gay, 
A band from my heart has falTn in twain, 
For long I suffered woe and pain, 
While you a frog within a well 
Enchanted were by witch's spell !"' 

Once more he heard the same snapping and cracking, and 
then again. The Prince thought it must be some part of the 
carriage giving way, but it was only the bands round faithful 
Henry's heart which were snapping, because of his great joy 
at his master's deliverance and happiness. 


The Cat and Mouse in Partnership 

A ( 

CAT once made the 
acquaintance of a 
Mouse, and she said 
so much to it about her love 
and friendship that at last 
the Mouse agreed to go into 
partnership and live with her. 
' We must take precau- 
tions for the winter,' said the 
Cat, ' or we shall suffer from 
hunger. You, little Mouse, 
dare not venture everywhere, 
and in the end you will get 
me into a fix.' 

So the good advice was 
followed, and a pot of fat 
was purchased. They did not know where to keep it, but, 
after much deliberation, the Cat said, ' I know no place where 
it would be safer than in the church ; nobody dare venture 
to take anything there. We will put it under the altar, and 
will not touch it till we are obliged to.' 

So the pot was deposited in safety ; but, before long, the 
Cat began to hanker after it, and said to the Mouse : 

' Oh, little Mouse, my cousin has asked me to be godmother. 
She has brought a son into the world. He is white, with 
brown spots ; and I am to hold him at the font. Let me go 
out to-day, and you stay alone to look after the house.' 

' Oh yes,' said the Mouse, ' by all means go ; and if you 
have anything nice to eat, think of me. I would gladly have 
a drop of sweet raspberry wine myself.' 


Now there wasn't a word of truth in all this. The Cat had 
no cousin, and she had not been invited to be godmother at 
all. She went straight to the church, crept to the pot of fat, 
and began to lick it, and she licked and licked the whole of the 
top off it. Then she took a stroll on the house-tops and re- 
flected on her proceedings, after which she stretched herself in 
the sun, and wiped her whiskers every time she thought of 
the pot of fat. She did not go home till evening. 

' Oh, there you are again,' said the Mouse ; ' you must have 
had a merry time.' 

' Oh, well enough,' answered the Cat. 

' What kind of name was given to the child ? ' asked the 

' Top-off,' answered the Cat, drily. 

' Top-off ! ' cried the Mouse. ' What an extraordinary 
name ; is it a common one in your family ? ' 

' What does it matter ! ' said the Cat. ' It 's not worse 
than crumbstealers, as your godchildren are called.' 

Not long after the Cat was again overcome by her desires. 
She said to the Mouse, ' You must oblige me again by looking 
after the house alone. For the second time I have been asked 
to be sponsor, and, as the child has a white ring round its neck, 
I can't refuse.' 

The good little Mouse was quite ready to oblige, and the 
Cat stole away behind the city walls to the church, and ate 
half of the pot of fat. ' Nothing tastes better,' she said, ' than 
what one eats by oneself ' ; and she was quite satisfied with 
her day's work. When she got home, the Mouse asked what 
this child had been named. 

' Half-gone.' 

' What do you say ? I have never heard such a name in 
my life. I don't believe you would find it in the calendar.' 

Soon the Cat's mouth watered again for the dainty morsel. 

' Good things always come in threes,' she said to the Mouse ; 
' again I am to stand sponsor. This child is quite black, with 
big white paws, but not another white hair on its body. Such 
K 65 


a thing only occurs once in a few years. You will let me go 
out again, won't you ? ' 

* Top-off ! Half-gone ! They are such curious names ; 
they set me thinking.' 

' You sit at home in your dark grey velvet coat,' said the 
Cat, ' getting your head full of fancies. It all comes of not 
going out in the daytime.' 

During the Cat's absence, the Mouse cleared up and made 
the house tidy ; but the greedy Cat ate up all the fat. ' When 
it 's all gone, one can be at peace,' said she to herself, as she 
went home, late at night, fat and satiated. 

The Mouse immediately asked what name had been given 
to the third child. 

' I don't suppose it will please you any better,' said the 
Cat. ' He is called All-gone 1 ' 

' All-gone ! ' exclaimed the Mouse. ' I have never seen it 
in print. All-gone 1 What is the meaning of it ? ' 

She shook her head, rolled herself up, and went to sleep. 

From this time nobody asked the Cat to be sponsor. But 
when the winter came, and it grew very difficult to get food, the 
Mouse remembered their store, and said, ' Come, Cat, we will go to 
our pot of fat which we have saved up ; won't it be good now ? ' 

' Yes, indeed 1 ' answered the Cat ; ' it will do you just as 
much good as putting your tongue out of the window.' 

They started off to the church, and when they got there 
they found the fat-pot still in its place, but it was quite empty. 

' Alas,' said the Mouse, ' now I see it all. Everything has 
come to the light of day. You have indeed been a true friend ! 
You ate it all up when you went to be godmother. First 
Top-off, then Half-gone, then ' 

' Hold your tongue,' cried the Cat. ' Another word, and 
I '11 eat you too.' 

But the unfortunate Mouse had ' All-gone ' on its lips, and 
hardly had it come out than the Cat made a spring, seized 
the Mouse, and gobbled it up. 

Now, that 's the way of the world, you see. 

The Raven 

THERE was once a Queen who had a little daughter still 
in arms. 

One day the child was naughty, and would not be 
quiet, whatever her mother might say. 

So she grew impatient, and as the Ravens were flying round 
the castle, she opened the window, and said : ' I wish you were 
a Raven, that you might fly away, and then I should have 

She had hardly said the words, when the child was changed 
into a Raven, and flew out cf the window. 

She flew straight into a dark wood, and her parents did not 
know what had become of her. 

One day a Man was passing through this wood and heard 
the Raven calling. 

When he was near enough, the Raven said : ' I am a Prin- 
cess by birth, and I am bewitched, but you can deliver me from 
the spell.' 

' What must I do ? ' asked he. 

4 Go further into the wood,' she said, ' and you will come to 
a house with an old Woman in it, who will offer you food and 
drink. But you must not take any. If you eat or drink what 
she offers you, you will fall into a deep sleep, and then you will 
never be able to deliver me. There is a great heap of tan in the 
garden behind the house ; you must stand on it and wait for 
me. I will come for three days in a coach drawn by four 
horses which, on the first day, will be white, on the second, 
chestnut, and on the last, black. If you are not awake, I shall 
not be delivered.' 



The Man promised to do everything that she asked. 

But the Raven said : * Alas ! I know that you will not 
deliver me. You will take what the Woman offers you, and I 
shall never be freed from the spell.' 

He promised once more not to touch either the food or the 
drink. But when he reached the house, the Old Woman said 
to him : ' Poor man I How tired you are. Come and refresh 
yourself. Eat and drink.' 

' No,' said the Man ; ' I will neither eat nor drink.' 

But she persisted, and said : ' Well, if you won't eat, take 
a sip out of the glass. One sip is nothing.' 

Then he yielded, and took a little sip. 

About two o'clock he went down into the garden, and stood 
on the tan-heap to wait for the Raven. All at once he became 
so tired that he could not keep on his feet, and lay down for a 
moment, not meaning to go to sleep. But he had hardly 
stretched himself out, before his eyelids closed, and he fell fast 
asleep. He slept so soundly, that nothing in the world could 
have awakened him. 

At two o'clock the Raven came, drawn by her four white 
horses. But she was already very sad, for she said : ' I know 
he is asleep.' 

She alighted from the carriage, went to him, shook him, and 
called him, but he did not wake. 

Next day at dinner-time the Old Woman came again, and 
brought him food and drink ; but again he refused to touch it. 
But she left him no peace, till at last she induced him to take a 
sip from the glass. 

Towards two o'clock he again went into the garden, and 
stood on the tan-heap, meaning to wait for the Raven. But he 
suddenly became so tired, that he sank down and fell into a 
deep sleep. 

When the Raven drove up with her chestnut horses, she 
was very mournful, and said : ' I know he is asleep.' 

She went to him, but he was fast asleep, and she could not 
wake him. 


Next day the Old Woman said : ' What is the meaning of 
this ? If you don't eat or drink you will die.' 

He said : ' I must not, and I will not either eat or drink.' 

She put the dish of food and the glass of wine before him, 
and when the scent of the wine reached him, he could withstand 
it no longer, and took a good draught. 

When the time came he went into the garden and stood on 
the tan-heap and waited for the Raven. But he was more 
tired than ever, lay down and slept like a log. 

At two o'clock the Raven came, drawn by four black horses, 
the coach and everything about it was black. She herself was 
in the deepest mourning, and said : ' Alas ! I know he is 

She shook him, and called him, but she could not wake 

Finding her efforts in vain, she placed a loaf beside him, a 
piece of meat, and a bottle of wine. Then she took a golden 
ring on which her name was engraved, and put it on his finger. 
Lastly, she laid a letter by him, saying that the bread, the 
meat, and the wine were inexhaustible. She also said 

' I see that you cannot deliver me here, but if you still 
wish to do so, come to the Golden Castle of Stromberg. I 
know that it is still in your power.' 

Then she seated herself in her coach again, and drove to 
the Golden Castle of Stromberg. 

When the Man woke and found that he had been asleep, 
his heart grew heavy, and he said : ' She certainly must have 
passed, and I have not delivered her.' 

Then his eyes fell on the things lying by him, and he read 
the letter which told him all that had occurred. 

So he got up and went away to find the Golden Castle of 
Stromberg, but he had no idea where to find it. 

When he had wandered about for a long time he came to a 
dark wood whence he could not find his way out. 

After walking about in it for a fortnight, he lay down one 
night under a bush to sleep, for he was very tired. But he 



heard such lamentations and howling that he could not go to 

Then he saw a light glimmering in the distance and went 
towards it. When he reached it, he found that it came from 

The Golden Castle of Stromberg. 

a house which looked very tiny because a huge Giant was 
standing at the door. 

He thought : ' If I go in and the Giant sees me, I shan't 
escape with my life.' 


But at last he ventured to go forward. 

When the Giant saw him, he said : ' It *s a good thing you 
have appeared. I have had nothing to eat for an age. I will 
just swallow you for my supper.' 

' You had better let me alone,' said the Man. * I shan't 
let myself be swallowed in a hurry. If you only want some- 
thing to eat, I have plenty here to satisfy you.' 

' If you are speaking the truth,' said the Giant, * you may 
be quite easy. I was only going to eat you because I had 
nothing else.' 

Then they went in and sat down at the table, and the Man 
produced the bread, the meat, and the wine, which were 

' This just suits me,' said the Giant. And he ate as much 
as ever he could. 

The Man said to him : ' Can't you tell me where to find the 
Golden Castle ? ' 

The Giant said : ' I will look at my map. Every town, 
village, and house is marked upon it.' 

He fetched the map, but the castle was not to be 

' It doesn't matter,' he said. * I have a bigger map up- 
stairs in my chest ; we will look for it there.' 

At last the Golden Castle was discovered, but it was many 
thousands of miles away. 

' How am I ever to get there ? ' asked the Man. 

The Giant said : ' I have a couple of hours to spare. I will 
carry you near it. But then I must come back to look after 
my wife and child.' 

Then the Giant transported him to within a hundred miles 
of the Castle, and said : ' You will be able to find your way from 
here alone.' Then he went back ; and the Man went on, till at 
last he came to the Golden Castle. 

It stood on a mountain of glass, and the bewitched Maiden 
drove round and round it every day in her coach. 

He was delighted to see her again, and wanted to go to her 



at once. But when he tried to climb the mountain, he found 
it was so slippery, that he slid back at every step. 

When he found he could not reach her, he grew very sad, 
and said to himself : ' I will stay down here and wait for her.' 

So he built himself a little hut, and lived in it for a whole 
year. He could see the Princess above, driving round the castle 
every day, but he could never get to her. 

Then one day he saw three Robbers fighting, and called out 
to them : ' God be with you 1 ' 

They stopped at the 
sound of his voice, but, 
seeing nothing, they 
began to fight again. 

Then he cried again: 
' God be with you ! ' 

They stopped and 
looked about, but, see- 
ing no one, went on 

Then he cried for 
the third time : ' God 
be with you ! ' 

Again they stopped 
and looked about, but, 

there was no one 

One day he saw three Rohberg fighting. 

I must 


and see what it is all 

as there was no 
visible, they fell to more 
savagely than ever. 

He said to himself 

He went up and asked them why they were fighting. 

One of them said he had found a stick which made any door 
fly open which it touched. 

The second said he had found a cloak which made him 
invisible when he wore it. 

The third said he had caught a horse which could go any- 
where, even up the mountain of glass. 


They could not decide whether these things should be 
common property or whether they should divide them. 

Then said the Man : ' I will exchange them with you if you 
like. I have no money, but I have something more valuable. 
First, however, I must test your things to see if you are speaking 
the truth.' 

They let him get on to the horse, put on the cloak, and take 
the stick in his hand. When he had got them all, he was 
nowhere to be seen. 

Then he gave them each a sound drubbing, and said : 
' There, you have your deserts, you bears. You may be 
satisfied with that.' 

Then he rode up the glass mountain, and when he reached 
the castle he found the gate was shut. He touched it with his 
stick and it flew open. 

He went in and straight up the stairs into the gallery where 
the Maiden sat with a golden cup of wine before her. 

But she could not see him because he had the cloak on. 

He took the ring she had given him, and dropped it into the 
cup, where it fell with a clink. 

She cried : ' That is my ring. The Man who is to deliver 
me must be here.' 

They searched for him all over the castle, but could not find 
him, for he had gone outside, taken off the cloak, and mounted 
his horse. 

When the people came to the gate and saw him, they raised 
cries of joy. 

He dismounted and took the Princess in his arms. She 
kissed him, and said : ' Now you have delivered me, and 
to-morrow we will celebrate our marriage.' 


The Adventures of Chanticleer 
and Partlet 


/CHANTICLEER said to Partlet one day, 'The nuts 
\A must be ripe ; now we will go up the hill together 
and have a good feast before the squirrel carries them 
all off.' 

' All right,' said Partlet, ' come along ; we '11 have a fine 
time.' So they went away up the hill, and, as it was a bright 
day, they stayed till evening. 

Now whether they really had grown fat, or whether it was 
merely pride, I do not know, but, whatever the reason, they 
would not walk home, and Chanticleer had to make a little 
carriage of nut-shells. When it was ready, Partlet took her 
seat in it, and said to Chanticleer, ' Now you get between the 

' That 's all very fine,' said Chanticleer, ' but I would sooner 
go home on foot than put myself in harness. I will sit on the 
box arid drive, but draw it myself I never will.' 

As they were squabbling over this, a Duck quacked out, 
' You thievish folk ! Who told you to come to my nut-hill ? 
Just you wait, you will suffer for it.' 

Then she rushed at Chanticleer with open bill, but he was 
not to be taken by surprise, and fell upon her with his spurs 
till she cried out for mercy. At last she allowed herself to be 
harnessed to the carriage. Chanticleer seated himself on the 
box as coachman, and cried out unceasingly, ' Now, Duck, 
run as fast as you can.' 

When they had driven a little way they met two foot 


passengers, a Pin and a Needle. They called out, ' Stop ! 
stop 1 ' They said it would soon be pitch dark, and they 
couldn't walk a step further, the road was so dirty ; might 
they not have a lift ? They had been to the Tailor's Inn by 
the gate, and had lingered over their beer. 

As they were both very thin, and did not take up much 
room, Chanticleer allowed them to get in, but he made them 
promise not to tread either on his toes, or on Partlet's. Late in 
the evening they came to an inn, and as they did not want to 
drive any further in the dark, and the Duck was getting rather 
uncertain on her feet, tumbling from side to side, they drove in. 

The Landlord at first made many objections to having 
them, and said the house was already full ; perhaps he thought 
they were not very grand folk. But at last, by dint of 
persuasive words, and promising him the egg which Mrs. 
Partlet had laid on the way, and also that he should keep the 
Duck, who laid an egg every day, he consented to let them 
stay the night. 

Then they had a meal served to them, and feasted, and 
passed the time in rioting. 

In the early dawn, before it grew light, and every one was 
asleep, Partlet woke up Chanticleer, fetched the egg, pecked 
a hole in it, and between them they ate it all up, and threw the 
shells on to the hearth. Then they went to the Needle, which 
was still asleep, seized it by the head and stuck it in the cushion 
of the Landlord's arm-chair ; the Pin they stuck in his towel, 
and then, without more ado, away they flew over the heath. 
The Duck, which preferred to sleep in the open air, and had 
stayed in the yard, heard them whizzing by, and bestirred 
herself. She found a stream, and swam away down it ; it 
was a much quicker way to get on than being harnessed to a 

A couple of hours later, the Landlord, who was the first 
to leave his pillow, got up and washed. When he took up the 
towel to dry himself, he scratched his face and made a long 
red line from ear to ear. Then he went to the kitchen to lipht 



his pipe, but when he stooped over the hearth the egg-shells 
flew into his eye. 

' Everything goes to my head this morning,' he said 
angrily, as he dropped on to the cushion of his Grandfather's 
arm-chair. But he quickly bounded up again, and shouted, 
' Gracious me ! ' for the Needle had run into him, and this 
time not in the head. He grew furious, and his suspicions 
immediately fell on the guests who had come in so late the 
night before. When he went to look for them, they were 
nowhere to be seen. Then he swore never to take such 
ragamuffins into his house again ; for they ate a great deal, 
paid nothing, and played tricks, by way of thanks, into the 


ANOTHER day, when Partlet and Chanticleer were about to take 
a journey, Chanticleer built a fine carriage with four red 
wheels, and harnessed four little mice to it. Mrs. Partlet 
seated herself in it with Chanticleer, and they drove off together. 

Before long they met a Cat. * Whither away ? ' said she. 

Chanticleer answered 

' All on our way 
A visit to pay 
To Mr. Korbes at his house to-day. 

' Take me with you,' said the Cat. 

Chanticleer answered, ' With pleasure ; sit down behind, 
so that you don't fall out forwards.' 

' My wheels so red, pray have a care 
From any splash of mud to spare. 
Little wheels hurry ! 
Little mice scurry ! 
All on our way 
A visit to pay 

To Mr. Korbes at his house to-day.' 


Then came a Millstone, an Egg, a Duck, a Pin, and, last 
of all, a Needle. They all took their places in the carriage 
and went with the rest. 

But when they arrived at Mr. Korbes' house, he wasn't in. 
The mice drew the carriage into the coach-house, Partlet and 
Chanticleer flew on to a perch, the Cat sat down by the fire, 
the Duck lay down by the well-pole. The Egg rolled itself 
up in the towel, the Pin stuck itself into the cushion, the 
Needle sprang into the pillow on the bed, and the Millstone 
laid itself over the door. 

When Mr. Korbes came home, and went to the hearth to 
make a fire, the Cat threw ashes into his face. He ran into the 
kitchen to wash, and the Duck squirted water into his face ; 
seizing the towel to dry himself, the Egg rolled out, broke, 
and stuck up one of his eyes. He wanted to rest, and sat down 
in his arm-chair, when the Pin pricked him. He grew very 
angry, threw himself on the bed and laid his head on the 
pillow, when the Needle ran into him and made him cry out. 
In a fury he wanted to rush into the open air, but when he 
got to the door, the Millstone fell on his head and killed him. 
What a bad man Mr. Korbes must have been 1 


PARTLET and Chanticleer went to the nut-hill on another 
occasion, and they arranged that whichever of them found 
a nut should share it with the other. 

Partlet found a huge nut, but said nothing about it, and 
meant to eat it all herself ; but the kernel was so big that she 
could not swallow it. It stuck in her throat, and she was 
afraid she would be choked. She shrieked, ' Chanticleer, 
Chanticleer, run and fetch some water as fast as you can, or 
I shall choke ! ' 

So Chanticleer ran as fast as he could to the Well, and 
said, ' Well, Well, you must give me some water ! Partlet 



is out on the nut-hill ; she has swallowed a big nut, and is 

The Well answered, ' First you must run to my Bride, 
and tell her to give you some red silk.' 

Chanticleer ran to the Bride, and said, ' Bride, Bride, give 
me some red silk : I will give the silk to the Well, and the 
Well will give me some water to take to Partlet, for she has 
swallowed a big nut, and is choking.' 

The Bride answered, ' Run first and fetch me a wreath 
which I left hanging on a willow.' 

So Chanticleer ran to the willow, pulled the wreath off the 
branch, and brought it to the Bride. The Bride gave him the 
red silk, which he took to the Well, and the Well gave him the 
water for it. Then Chanticleer took the water to Partlet ; 
but as it happened she had choked in the meantime, and lay 
there dead and stiff. Chanticleer's grief was so great that he 
cried aloud, and all the animals came and condoled with him. 

Six mice built a little car to draw Partlet to the grave ; 
and when the car was ready they harnessed themselves to it, 
and drew Partlet away. 

On the way, Reynard the fox joined them. 'Where are 
you going, Chanticleer ? ' 

' I 'm going to bury my wife, Partlet.' 

' May I go with you ? ' 

' Jump up behind, we 're not yet full, 
A weight in front, my nags can't pull. 11 

So the Fox took a seat at the back, and he was followed 
by the wolf, the bear, the stag, the lion, and all the other 
animals of the forest. The procession went on, till they came 
to a stream. 

' How shall we ever get over ? ' said Chanticleer. 

A Straw was lying by the stream, and it said, ' I will stretch 
myself across, and then you can pass over upon me.' 

But when the six mice got on to the Straw it collapsed, and 
the mice fell into the water with it, and they were all drowned. 


So their difficulty was as great as ever. Then a Coal came 
along, and said, ' I am big enough, I will lie down, and you can 
pass over me.' 

So the Coal laid itself across the stream, but unfortunately 
it just touched the water, hissed, went out, and was dead. 
A stone, seeing this, had pity on them, and, wanting to help 
Chanticleer, laid itself over the water. Now Chanticleer drew 
the car, and he just managed to get across himself with the 
hen. Then he wanted to pull the others over who were 
hanging on behind, but it was too much for him, and the car 
fell back and they all fell into the water and were drowned. 

So Chanticleer was left alone with the dead hen, and he 
dug a grave and laid her in it. Then he made a mound over 
it, and seated himself upon it and grieved till he died ; and 
then they were all dead. 



THERE was once a man and his wife who had long 
wished in vain for a child, when at last they had 
reason to hope that Heaven would grant their wish. 
There was a little window at the back of their house, which 
overlooked a beautiful garden, full of lovely flowers and 
shrubs. It was, however, surrounded by a high wall, and 
nobody dared to enter it, because it belonged to a powerful 
Witch, who was feared by everybody. 

One day the woman, standing at this window and looking 
into the garden, saw a bed planted with beautiful rampion. 
It looked so fresh and green that it made her long to eat some 
of it. This longing increased every day, and as she knew it 
could never be satisfied, she began to look pale and miserable, 
and to pine away. Then her husband was alarmed, and said : 
' What ails you, my dear wife ? ' 

' Alas ! ' she answered, ' if I cannot get any of the rampion 
from the garden behind our house to eat, I shall die.' 

Her husband, who loved her, thought, ' Before you let 
your wife die, you must fetch her some of that rampion, cost 
what it may.' So in the twilight he climbed over the wall 
into the Witch's garden, hastily picked a handful of rampion, 
and took it back to his wife. She immediately dressed it, 
and ate it up very eagerly. It was so very, very nice, that the 
next day her longing for it increased threefold. She could 
have no peace unless her husband fetched her some more. 
So in the twilight he set out again ; but when he got over the 
wall he was terrified to see the Witch before him. 

' How dare you come into my garden like a thief, and steal 
my rampion ? ' she said, with angry looks. ' It shall be the 
worse for you ! ' 



* Alas ! ' he answeied, ' be merciful to me ; I am only here 
from necessity. My wife sees your rampion from the window, 
and she has such a longing for it, that she would die if she 
could not get some of it.' 

The anger of the Witch abated, and she said to him, ' If 
it is as you say, I will allow you to take away with you as 
much rampion as you like, but on one condition. You must 
give me the child which your wife is about to bring into the 
world. I will care for it like a mother, and all will be well 
with it.' In his fear the man consented to everything, and 
when the baby was born, the Witch appeared, gave it the 
name of Rapunzel (rampion), and took it away with her. 

Rapunzel was the most beautiful child under the sun. 
When she was twelve years old, the Witch shut her up in a 
tower which stood in a wood. It had neither staircase nor 
doors, and only a little window quite high up in the wall. 
When the Witch wanted to enter the tower, she stood at the 
foot of it, and cried 

' Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair.' 

Rapunzel had splendid long hair, as fine as spun gold. 
As soon as she heard the voice of the Witch, she unfastened 
her plaits and twisted them round a hook by the window. 
They fell twenty ells downwards, and the Witch climbed up 
by them. 

It happened a couple of years later that the King's son 
rode through the forest, and came close to the tower. From 
thence he heard a song so lovely, that he stopped to listen. 
It was Rapunzel, who in her loneliness made her sweet voice 
resound to pass away the time. The King's son wanted to 
join her, and he sought for the door of the tower, but there 
was none to find. 

He rode home, but the song had touched his heart so 
deeply that he went into the forest every day to listen to it. 
Once, when he was hidden behind a tree, he saw a Witch 
come to the tower and call out 

' Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair.' 

F 81 


Then Rapunzel lowered her plaits of hair and the Witch 
climbed up to her. 

' If that is the ladder by which one ascends,' he thought, 
' I will try my luck myself.' And the next day, when it 
began to grow dark, he went to the tower and cried 

' Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair.' 

The hair fell down at once, and the King's son climbed up 
by it. 

At first Rapunzel was terrified, for she had never set eyes 
on a man before, but the King's son talked to her kindly, and 
told her that his heart had been so deeply touched by her 
song that he had no peace, and he was obliged to see her. 
Then Rapunzel lost her fear, and when he asked if she would 
have him for her husband, and she saw that he was young 
and handsome, she thought, ' He will love me better than old 
Mother Gothel.' So she said, ' Yes,' and laid her hand in his. 
She said, ' I will gladly go with you, but I do not know how I 
am to get down from this tower. When you come, will you 
bring a skein of silk with you every time. I will twist it into 
a ladder, and when it is long enough I will descend by it, and 
you can take me away with you on your horse.' 

She arranged with him that he should come and see her 
every evening, for the old Witch came in the daytime. 

The Witch discovered nothing, till suddenly Rapunzel 
said to her, ' Tell me, Mother Gothel, how can it be that you 
are so much heavier to draw up than the young Prince who 
will be here before long ? ' 

' Oh, you wicked child, what do you say ? I thought I 
had separated you from all the world, and yet you have 
deceived me.' In her rage she seized RapunzePs beautiful 
hair, twisted it twice round her left hand, snatched up a pair 
of shears and cut off the plaits, which fell to the ground. 
She was so merciless that she took poor Rapunzel away into 
a wilderness, where she forced her to live in the greatest grief 
and misery. 

In the evening of the day on which she had banished 


Rapunzel, the Witch fastened the plaits which she had cut 
off to the hook by the window, and when the Prince came 
and called 

' Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair,' 
she lowered the hair. The Prince climbed up, but there he 
found, not his beloved Rapunzel, but the Witch, who looked 
at him with angry and wicked eyes. 

' Ah ! ' she cried mockingly, ' you have come to fetch your 
ladylove, but the pretty bird is no longer in her nest ; and she 
can sing no more, for the cat has seized her, and it will scratch 
your own eyes out too. Rapunzel is lost to you ; you will 
never see her again.' 

The Prince was beside himself with grief, and in his despair 
he sprang out of the window. He was not killed, but his eyes 
were scratched out by the thorns among which he fell. He 
wandered about blind in the wood, and had nothing but roots 
and berries to eat. He did nothing but weep and lament 
over the loss of his beloved wife Rapunzel. In this way he 
wandered about for some years, till at last he reached the 
wilderness where Rapunzel had been living in great poverty 
with the twins who had been born to her, a boy and a girl. 

He heard a voice which seemed very familiar to him, and 
he went towards it. Rapunzel knew him at once, and fell 
weeping upon his neck. Two of her tears fell upon his eyes, 
and they immediately grew quite clear, and he could see as 
well as ever. 

He took her to his kingdom, where he was received with 
joy, and they lived long and happily together. 

Found lingbird 

THERE was once a Forester who went into the woods 
to hunt, and he heard a cry like that of a little child. 
He followed the sound, and at last came to a big 
tree where a tiny child was sitting high up on one of the top 
branches. The mother had gone to sleep under the tree, and 
a bird of prey, seeing the child on her lap, had flown down 
and carried it off in its beak to the top of the tree. 

The Forester climbed the tree and brought down the child, 
thinking to himself, ' I will take it home, and bring it up with 
my own little Lina.' 

So he took it home, and the two children were brought up 
together. The foundling was called Foundlingbird, because it 
had been found by a bird. Foundlingbird and Lina were so 
fond of each other, that they could not bear to be out of each 
other's sight. 

Now the Forester had an old Cook, who one evening took 
two pails, and began carrying water. She did not go once 
but many times, backwards and forwards to the well. 

Lina saw this, and said : ' Dear me, Sanna, why are you 
carrying so much water ? ' 

' If thou wilt not tell any one, I will tell thee why.' 

Lina said no, she would not tell any one. 

So then the Cook said : ' To-morrow morning early, when 
the Forester goes out hunting, I am going to boil the water, 
and when it bubbles in the kettle, I am going to throw Found- 
lingbird into it to boil him.' 

Next morning the Forester got up very early, and went 
out hunting, leaving the children still in bed. 

She did not go once but many times, backwards aud forwards to the well. 


Then said Lina to Foundlingbird : ' Never forsake me, 
and I will never forsake thee.' 

And Foundlingbird answered : ' I will never forsake thee.' 

Then Lina said : ' I must tell thee now. Old Sanna 
brought in so many pails of water last night, that I asked her 
what she was doing. She said if I would not tell anybody, 
she would tell me what it was for. So I promised not to tell 
anybody, and she said that in the morning, when the father 
had gone out hunting, she would fill the kettle, and when it 
was boiling, she would throw thee into it and boil thee. Now 
we must get up quickly, dress ourselves, and run away.' 

So the children got up, dressed quickly, and left the house. 

When the water boiled, the Cook went to their bedroom 
to fetch Foundlingbird to throw him into it. But when she 
entered the room, and went up to the bed, both the children 
were gone. She was terribly frightened, and said to herself : 
' Whatever am I to say to the Forester when he comes home 
and finds the children gone ? We must hurry after them and 
get them back.' So the Cook despatched three men-servants 
to catch up the children and bring them back. 

The children were sitting near a wood, and when they saw 
the three men a great way off, Lina said to Foundlingbird, ' Do 
not forsake me, and I will never forsake thee.' 

And Foundlingbird answered, ' I will never forsake thee as 
long as I live.' 

Then Lina said, ' Thou must turn into a rosebush, and I 
will be a rosebud upon it.' 

When the three men reached the wood, they found nothing 
but a rosebush with one rosebud on it ; no children were to be 
seen. They said to each other, ' There is nothing to be done 
here.' And they went home and told the Cook that they had 
seen nothing whatever but a rosebush, with one rosebud on it. 

The old Cook scolded them, and said : ' You boobies, you 
ought to have hacked the rosebush to pieces, broken off the 
bud, and brought it home to me. Off with you at once and do 
it.' So they had to start off again on the search. 


But the children saw them a long way off, and Lina said 
to Foundlingbird, ' Do not forsake me, and I will never forsake 

Foundlingbird said : ' I will never forsake thee as long as I 

Then said Lina : ' Thou must become a church, and I will 
be the chandelier in it.' 

Now when the three men came up they found nothing but 
a church with a chandelier in it ; and they said to each other : 
' What are we to do here ? We had better go home again.' 

When they reached the house, the Cook asked if they had 
not found anything. They said : ' Nothing but a church with 
a chandelier in it.' 

' You fools,' screamed the Cook, ' why did you not destroy 
the church and bring me the chandelier ? ' Then the old Cook 
put her best foot foremost, and started herself with the three 
men in pursuit of the children. 

But the children saw the three men in the distance, and the 
old Cook waddling behind them. Then said Lina : ' Found- 
lingbird, do not forsake me, and I will never forsake thee.' 

And he said : ' I will never forsake thee as long as I live.' 

Lina said : ' Thou must become a pond, and I will be the 
duck swimming upon it.' 

When the Cook reached the pond, she lay down beside it 
to drink it up, but the duck swam quickly forward, seized her 
head with his bill and dragged her under water ; so the old 
witch was drowned. 

Then the children went home together as happy as possible, 
and if they are not dead yet, then they are still alive. 


The Valiant Tailor 

A TAILOR was sitting on his table at the window one 

/~\ summer morning. He was a good fellow, and 

stitched with all his might. A peasant woman 

came down the street, crying, ' Good jam for sale ! good jam 

for sale ! ' 

This had a pleasant sound in the Tailor's ears ; he put his 
pale face out of the window, and cried, ' You '11 find a sale for 
your wares up here, good Woman.' 

The Woman went up the three steps to the Tailor, with the 
heavy basket on her head, and he made her unpack all her 
pots. He examined them all, lifted them up, smelt them, 
and at last said, ' The jam seems good ; weigh me out four 
ounces, good Woman, and should it come over the quarter 
pound, it will be all the same to me.' 

The Woman, who had hoped for a better sale, gave him 
what he asked for, but went away cross, and grumbling to 

' That jam will be a blessing to me,' cried the Tailor ; 'it 
will give me strength and power.' He brought his bread out 
of the cupboard, cut a whole slice, and spread the jam on it. 
* It won't be a bitter morsel,' said he, ' but I will finish this 
waistcoat before I stick my teeth into it.' 

He put the bread down by his side, and went on with his 
sewing, but in his joy the stitches got bigger and bigger. 
The smell of the jam rose to the wall, where the flies were 
clustered in swarms, and tempted them to come down, and 
they settled on the jam in masses. 

' Ah ! who invited you ? ' cried the Tailor, chasing away 
his unbidden guests. But the flies, who did not understand 


his language, were not to be got rid of so easily, and came back 
in greater numbers than ever. At last the Tailor came to the 
end of his patience, and seizing a bit of cloth, he cried, ' Wait 
a bit, and I '11 give it you ! ' So saying, he struck out at them 
mercilessly. When he looked, he found no fewer than seven 
dead and motionless. ' So that's 
the kind of fellow you are,' he 
said, admiring his own valour. 
' The whole town shall know of 

In great haste he cut out a 
belt for himself, and stitched on 
it, in big letters, * Seven at one 
blow!' 'The town!' he then 
said, ' the whole world shall know 
of it ! ' And his heart wagged 
for very joy like the tail of a 
lamb. The Tailor fastened the 
belt round his waist, and wanted 
to start out into the world at 
once ; he found his workshop 
too small for his valour. Before 
starting, he searched the house 
to see if there was anything to 
take with him. He only found 
an old cheese, but this he put 
into his pocket. By the gate he 
saw a bird entangled in a thicket, 
and he put that into his pocket 
with the cheese. Then he boldly 
took to the road, and as he was 
light and active, he felt no fatigue. The road led up a 
mountain, and when he reached the highest point, he found 
a huge Giant sitting there comfortably looking round him. 

The Tailor went pluckily up to him, and addressed him. 

' Good-day, Comrade, you are sitting there surveying the 


' Wait a bit, and I '11 give it you ! ' 

So saying, he struck out at 

them mercilessly. 


wide world, I suppose. I am just on my way to try my luck. 
Do you feel inclined to go with me ? ' 

The Giant looked scornfully at the Tailor, and said, ' You 
jackanapes ! you miserable ragamuffin ! ' 

' That may be,' said the Tailor, unbuttoning his coat and 
showing the Giant his belt. ' You may just read what kind 
of fellow I am.' 

The Giant read, ' Seven at one blow,' and thought that it 
was people the Tailor had slain ; so it gave him a certain 
amount of respect for the little fellow. Still, he thought he 
would try him ; so he picked up a stone and squeezed it till 
the water dropped out of it. 

' Do that,' he said, ' if you have the strength.' 

' No more than that ! ' said the Tailor ; ' why, it 's a mere 
joke to me.' 

He put his hand into his pocket, and pulling out the bit 
of soft cheese, he squeezed it till the moisture ran out. 

' I guess that will equal you,' said he. 

The Giant did not know what to say, and could not have 
believed it of the little man. 

Then the Giant picked up a stone, and threw it up so high 
that one could scarcely follow it with the eye. 

' Now, then, you sample of a mannikin, do that after me.' 

' Well thrown ! ' said the Tailor, ' but the stone fell to the 
ground again. Now I will throw one for you which will never 
come back again.' 

So saying, he put his hand into his pocket, took out the 
bird, and threw it into the air. The bird, rejoiced at its 
freedom, soared into the air, and was never seen again. 

' What do you think of that, Comrade ? ' asked the Tailor. 

' You can certainly throw ; but now we will see if you are 
in a condition to carry anything,' said the Giant. 

He led the Tailor to a mighty oak which had been felled, 
and which lay upon the ground. 

' If you are strong enough, help me out of the wood with 
this tree,' he said. 


* Willingly,' answered the little man. ' You take the trunk 
on your shoulder, and I will take the branches ; they must 
certainly be the heaviest.' 

The Giant accordingly took the trunk on his shoulder ; 
but the Tailor seated himself on one of the branches, and the 
Giant, who could not look round, had to carry the whole tree, 
and the Tailor into the bargain. The Tailor was very merry 
on the end of the tree, and whistled ' Three Tailors rode merrily 
out of the town,' as if tree-carrying were a joke to him. 

When the Giant had carried the tree some distance, he 
could go no further, and exclaimed, ' Look out, I am going to 
drop the tree.' 

The Tailor sprang to the ground with great agility, and 
seized the tree with both arms, as if he had been carrying it 
all the time. He said to the Giant : ' Big fellow as you are, 
you can't carry a tree.' 

After a time they went on together, and when they came 
to a cherry-tree, the Giant seized the top branches, where the 
cherries ripened first, bent them down, put them in the Tailor's 
hand, and told him to eat. The Tailor, however, was much 
too weak to hold the tree, and when the Giant let go, the tree 
sprang back, carrying the Tailor with it into the air. When 
he reached the ground again, without any injury, the Giant 
said, ' What 's this ? Haven't you the strength to hold a 
feeble sapling ? ' 

' It 's not strength that 's wanting,' answered the Tailor. 
' Do you think that would be anything to one who killed 
seven at a blow ? I sprang over the tree because some 
sportsmen were shooting among the bushes. Spring after 
me if you like.' 

The Giant made the attempt, but he could not clear the 
tree, and stuck among the branches. So here, too, the Tailor 
had the advantage of him. 

The Giant said, ' If you are such a gallant fellow, come 
with me to our cave, and stay the night with us.' 

The Tailor was quite willing, and went with him. When 



they reached the cave, they found several other Giants sitting 
round a fire, and each one held a roasted sheep in his hand, 
which he was eating. The Tailor looked about him, and 
thought, ' It is much more roomy here than in my workshop.' 

The Giant showed him a bed, and told him to lie down 
and have a good sleep. The bed was much too big for the 
Tailor, so he did not lie down in it, but crept into a corner. 
At midnight, when the Giant thought the Tailor would be in 
a heavy sleep, he got up, took a big oak club, and with one 
blow crashed right through the bed, and thought he had put 
an end to the grasshopper. Early in the morning the Giants 
went out into the woods, forgetting all about the Tailor, 
when all at once he appeared before them, as lively as possible. 
They were terrified, and thinking he would strike them all 
dead, they ran off as fast as ever they could. 

The Tailor went on his way, always following his own 
pointed nose. When he had walked for a long time, he came 
to the courtyard of a royal palace. He was so tired that he 
lay down on the grass and went to sleep. While he lay and 
slept, the people came and inspected him on all sides, and they 
read on his belt, ' Seven at one blow.' ' Alas ! ' they said, 
' why does this great warrior come here in time of peace ; 
he must be a mighty man.' 

They went to the King and told him about it ; and they 
were of opinion that, should war break out, he would be a 
useful and powerful man, who should on no account be allowed 
to depart. This advice pleased the King, and he sent one of 
his courtiers to the Tailor to offer him a military appointment 
when he woke up. The messenger remained standing by the 
Tailor, till he opened his eyes and stretched himself, and then 
he made the offer. 

' For that very purpose have I come,' said the Tailor. ' I 
am quite ready to enter the King's service.' 

So he was received with honour, and a special dwelling was 
assigned to him. 

The Soldiers, however, bore him a grudge, and wished him 


a thousand miles away. ' What will be the end of it ? ' they 
said to each other. ' When we quarrel with him, and he 
strikes out, seven of us will fall at once. One of us can't cope 
with him.' So they took a resolve, and went all together to 
the King, and asked for their discharge. ' We are not made,' 
said they, ' to hold our own with a man who strikes seven at 
one blow.' 

It grieved the King to lose all his faithful servants for the 
sake of one man ; he wished he had never set eyes on the 
Tailor, and was quite ready to let him go. He did not dare, 
however, to give him his dismissal, for he was afraid that he 
would kill him and all his people, and place himself on the 
throne. He pondered over it for a long time, and at last he 
thought of a plan. He sent for the Tailor, and said that as he 
was so great a warrior, he would make him an offer. In a 
forest in his kingdom lived two giants, who, by robbery, 
murder, burning, and laying waste, did much harm. No one 
dared approach them without being in danger of his life. If 
he could subdue and kill these two Giants, he would give him 
his only daughter to be his wife, and half his kingdom as a 
dowry ; also he would give him a hundred Horsemen to 
accompany and help him. 

' That would be something for a man like me,' thought the 
Tailor. ' A beautiful Princess and half a kingdom are not 
offered to one every day.' ' Oh yes,' was his answer, ' I will 
soon subdue the Giants, and that without the hundred Horse- 
men. He who slays seven at a blow need not fear two.' The 
Tailor set out at once, accompanied by the hundred Horse- 
men ; but when he came to the edge of the forest, he said to 
his followers, ' Wait here, I will soon make an end of the Giants 
by myself.' 

Then he disappeared into the wood ; he looked about to 
the right and to the left. Before long he espied both the 
Giants lying under a tree fast asleep, and snoring. Their 
snores were so tremendous that they made the branches of 
the tree dance up and down. The Tailor, who was no fool, 



filled his pockets with stones, and climbed up the tree. When 
he got half-way up, he slipped on to a branch just above the 
sleepers, and then hurled the stones, one after another, on to 
one of them. 

It was some time before the Giant noticed anything ; 
then he woke up, pushed his companion, and said, ' What are 
you hitting me for ? ' 

' You 're dreaming,' said the other. ' I didn't hit you.' 
They went to sleep again, and the Tailor threw a stone at the 
other one. ' What 's that ? ' he cried. ' What are you 
throwing at me ? ' 

' I 'm not throwing anything,' answered the first one, 
with a growl. 

They quarrelled over it for a time, but as they were sleepy, 
they made it up, and their eyes closed again. 

The Tailor began his game again, picked out his biggest 
stone, and threw it at the first Giant as hard as he could. 

' This is too bad,' said the Giant, flying up like a madman. 
He pushed his companion against the tree with such violence 
that it shook. The other paid him back in the same coin, 
and they worked themselves up into such a rage that they 
tore up trees by the roots, and hacked at each other till they 
both fell dead upon the ground. 

Then the Tailor jumped down from his perch. ' It was 
very lucky,' he said, ' that they did not tear up the tree I was 
sitting on, or I should have had to spring on to another like a 
squirrel, but we are nimble fellows.' He drew his sword, and 
gave each of the Giants two or three cuts in the chest. Then 
he went out to the Horsemen, and said, ' The work is done. 
I have given both of them the finishing stroke, but it was a 
difficult job. In their distress they tore trees up by the root 
to defend themselves ; but all that 's no good when a man like 
me comes, who slays seven at a blow.' 

' Are you not wounded ? ' then asked the Horsemen. 

' There was no danger,' answered the Tailor. ' Not a hair 
of my head was touched.' 


The Horsemen would not believe him, and rode into the 
forest to see. There, right enough, lay the Giants in pools of 
blood, and, round about them, the uprooted trees. 

The Tailor now demanded his promised reward from the 
King ; but he, in the meantime, had repented of this promise, 
and was again trying to think of a plan to shake him off. 

' Before I give you my daughter and the half of my 
kingdom, you must perform one more doughty deed. There 
is a Unicorn which runs about in the forests doing vast 
damage ; you must capture it.' 

' I have even less fear of one Unicorn than of two Giants. 
Seven at one stroke is my style.' He took a rope and an axe, 
and went into the wood, and told his followers to stay outside. 
He did not have long to wait. The Unicorn soon appeared, 
and dashed towards the Tailor, as if it meant to run him through 
with its horn on the spot. ' Softly, softly,' cried the Tailor. 
* Not so fast.' He stood still, and waited till the animal got 
quite near, and then he very nimbly dodged behind a tree. 
The Unicorn rushed at the tree, and ran its horn so hard into 
the trunk that it had not strength to pull it out again, and so 
it was caught. ' Now I have the prey,' said the Tailor, coming 
from behind the tree. He fastened the rope round the 
creature's neck, and, with his axe, released the horn from the 
tree. When this was done he led the animal away, and took 
it to the King. 

Still the King would not give him the promised reward, 
but made a third demand of him. Before the marriage, the 
Tailor must catch a Boar which did much damage in the 
woods : the Huntsmen were to help him. 

' Willingly,' said the Tailor. ' That will be mere child's 

He did not take the Huntsmen into the wood with him, 
at which they were well pleased, for they had already more 
than once had such a reception from the Boar that they had no 
wish to encounter him again. When the Boar saw the Tailor, 
it flew at him with foaming mouth, and, gnashing its teeth, 



tried to throw him to the ground ; but the nimble hero darted 
into a little chapel which stood near. He jumped out again 
immediately by the window. The Boar rushed in after the 
Tailor ; but he by this time was hopping about outside, and 
quickly shut the door upon the Boar. So the raging animal 
was caught, for it was far too heavy and clumsy to jump out 
of the window. The Tailor called the Huntsmen up to see 
the captive with their own eyes. 

The hero then went to the King, who was now obliged to 
keep his word, whether he liked it or not ; so he handed over 
his daughter and half his kingdom to him. Had he known 
that it was no warrior but only a Tailor who stood before him, 
he would have taken it even more to heart. The marriage was 
held with much pomp, but little joy, and a King was made out 
of a Tailor. 

After a time the young Queen heard her husband talking 
in his sleep, and saying, ' Apprentice, bring me the waistcoat, 
and patch the trousers, or I will break the yard measure over 
your head.' So in this manner she discovered the young 
gentleman's origin. In the morning she complained to the 
King, and begged him to rid her of a husband who was nothing 
more than a Tailor. 

The King comforted her, and said, ' To-night, leave your 
bedroom door open. My servants shall stand outside, and 
when he is asleep they shall go in and bind him. They shall 
then carry him away, and put him on board a ship which 
will take him far away.' 

The lady was satisfied with this ; but the Tailor's armour- 
bearer, who was attached to his young lord, told him the 
whole plot. 

' I will put a stop to their plan,' said the Tailor. 

At night he went to bed as usual with his wife. When 
she thought he was asleep, she got up, opened the door, and 
went to bed again. The Tailor, who had only pretended to be 
asleep, began to cry out in a clear voice, ' Apprentice, bring 
me the waistcoat, and you patch the trousers, or I will break 


the yard measure over your head. I have slain seven at a 
blow, killed two Giants, led captive a Unicorn, and caught a 
Boar ; should I be afraid of those who are standing outside 
my chamber door ? ' 

When they heard the Tailor speaking like this, the servants 
were overcome by fear, and ran away as if wild animals were 
after them, and none of them would venture near him again. 

So the Tailor remained a King till the day of his death. 


ALONG time ago there was a King who had a lovely 
pleasure-garden round his palace, and in it stood a tree 
which bore golden apples. When the apples were 
nearly ripe they were counted, but the very next morning 
one was missing. 

This was reported to the King, and he ordered a watch to 
be set every night under the tree. 

The King had three sons, and he sent the eldest into the 
garden at nightfall ; but by midnight he was overcome with 
sleep, and in the morning another apple was missing. 

On the following night the second son had to keep watch, 
but he fared no better. When the clock struck twelve, he too 
was fast asleep, and in the morning another apple was gone. 

The turn to watch now came to the third son. He was 
quite ready, but the King had not much confidence in him, 
and thought that he would accomplish even less than his 
brothers. At last, however, he gave his permission; so the 
youth lay down under the tree to watch, determined not to let 
sleep get the mastery over him. 

As the clock struck twelve there was a rustling in the air, 


and by the light of the moon he saw a Bird, whose shining 
feathers were of pure gold. The Bird settled on the tree, and 
was just plucking an apple when the young Prince shot an 
arrow at it. The Bird flew away, but the arrow hit its plum- 
age, and one of the golden feathers fell to the ground. The 
Prince picked it up, and in the morning took it to the King 
and told him all that he had seen in the night. 

The King assembled his council, and everybody declared 
that a feather like that was worth more than the whole king- 
dom. ' If the feather is worth so much,' said the King, ' one 
will not satisfy me ; I must and will have the whole Bird.' 

The eldest, relying on his cleverness, set out in search of 
the Bird, and thought that he would be sure to find it soon. 

When he had gone some distance he saw a Fox sitting by 
the edge of a wood ; he raised his gun and aimed at it. The 
Fox cried out, ' Do not shoot me, and I will give you some 
good advice. You are going to look for the Golden Bird ; 
you will come to a village at nightfall, where you will find two 
inns opposite each other. One of them will be brightly 
lighted, and there will be noise and revelry going on in it. 
Be sure you do not choose that one, but go into the other, 
even if you don't like the look of it so well.' 

' How can a stupid animal like that give me good advice ? ' 
thought the King's son, and he pulled the trigger, but missed 
the Fox, who turned tail and made off into the wood. 

Thereupon the Prince continued his journey, and at night- 
fall reached the village with the two inns. Singing and 
dancing were going on in the one, and the other had a poverty- 
stricken and decayed appearance. 

' I should be a fool,' he said, ' if I were to go to that miserable 
place with this good one so near.' 

So he went into the noisy one, and lived there in rioting 
and revelry, forgetting the Bird, his father, and all his good 

When some time had passed and the eldest son did not 
come back, the second prepared to start in quest of the 



Golden Bird. He met the Fox, as the eldest son had done, 
and it gave him the same good advice, of which he took just 
as little heed. 

He came to the two inns, and saw his brother standing at 
the window of the one whence sounds of revelry proceeded. 
He could not withstand his brother's calling, so he went in 
and gave himself up to a life of pleasure. 

Again some time passed, and the King's youngest son 
wanted to go out to try his luck ; but his father would not 
let him go. 

' It is useless,' he said. ' He will be even less able to find 
the Golden Bird than his brothers, and when any ill luck 
overtakes him, he will not be able to help himself ; he has no 

But at last, because he gave him no peace, he let him go. 
The Fox again sat at the edge of the wood, begged for its 
life, and gave its good advice. The Prince was good-natured, 
and said : ' Be calm, little Fox, I will do thee no harm.' 

' You won't repent it,' answered the Fox ; ' and so that 
you may get along faster, come and mount on my tail.' 

No sooner had he seated himself than the Fox began to 
run, and away they flew over stock and stone, at such a pace 
that his hair whistled in the wind. 

When they reached the village, the Prince dismounted, and 
following the good advice of the Fox, he went straight to the 
mean inn without looking about him, and there he passed a 
peaceful night. In the morning when he went out into the 
fields, there sat the Fox, who said : ' I will now tell you what 
you must do next. Walk straight on till you come to a 
castle, in front of which a whole regiment of soldiers is 
encamped. Don't be afraid of them ; they will all be asleep 
and snoring. Walk through the midst of them straight into 
the castle, and through all Jie rooms, and at last you will 
reach an apartment where the Golden Bird will be hanging 
in a common wooden cage. A golden cage stands near it 
for show, but beware ! whatever you do, you must not take 


the bird out of the wooden cage to put it into the other, or 
it will be the worse for you.' 

After these words the Fox again stretched out his tail, the 
Prince took his seat on it, and away they flew over stock and 
stone, till his hair whistled in the wind. 

When he arrived at the castle, he found everything just as 
the Fox had said. 

The Prince went to the room where the Golden Bird hung 
in the wooden cage, with a golden cage standing by, and the 
three golden apples were scattered about the room. He 
thought it would be absurd to. leave the beautiful Bird in the 
common old cage, so he opened the door, caught it, and put 
it into the golden cage. But as he did it, the Bird uttered a 
piercing shriek. The soldiers woke up, rushed in, and carried 
him away to prison. Next morning he was taken before a 
judge, and, as he confessed all, he was sentenced to death. 
The King, however, said that he would spare his life on one 
condition, and this was that he should bring him the Golden 
Horse which runs faster than the wind. In addition, he 
should have the Golden Bird as a reward. 

So the Prince set off with many sighs ; he was very sad, 
for where was he to find the Golden Horse ? 

Then suddenly he saw his old friend the Fox sitting on the 
road. ' Now you see,' said the Fox, ' all this has happened 
because you did not listen to me. All the same, keep up your 
spirits ; I will protect you and tell you how to find the Golden 
Horse. You must keep straight along the road, and you 
will come to a palace, in the stable of which stands the Golden 
Horse. The grooms will be lying round the stable, but they 
will be fast asleep and snoring, and you can safely lead the 
horse through them. Only, one thing you must beware of. 
Put the old saddle of wood and leather upon it, and not the 
golden one hanging near, or you will rue it.' 

Then the Fox stretched out his tail, the Prince took his seat, 
and away they flew over stock and stone, till his hair whistled 
in the wind, 



Everything happened just as the Fox had said. The 
Prince came to the stable where the Golden Horse stood, but 
when he was about to put the old saddle on its back, he 
thought, ' Such a beautiful animal will be disgraced if I don't 
put the good saddle upon him, as he deserves.' Hardly had 
the golden saddle touched the horse than he began neighing 
loudly. The grooms awoke, seized the Prince, and threw him 
into a dungeon. 

The next morning he was taken before a judge, and con- 
demned to death ; but the King promised to spare his life, 
and give him the Golden Horse as well, if he could bring him 
the beautiful Princess out of the golden palace. With a 
heavy heart the Prince set out, when to his delight he soon 
met the faithful Fox. 

' I ought to leave you to your fate,' he said ; ' but I will 
have pity on you and once more help you out of your trouble. 
Your road leads straight to the golden palace, you will reach 
it in the evening ; and at night, when everything is quiet, 
the beautiful Princess will go to the bathroom to take a bath. 
As she goes along, spring forward and give her a kiss, and she 
will follow you. Lead her away with you ; only on no account 
allow her to bid her parents good-bye, or it will go badly with 

Again the Fox stretched out his tail, the Prince seated 
himself upon it, and off they flew over stock and stone, till 
his hair whistled in the wind. 

When he got to the palace, it was just as the Fox had said. 
He waited till midnight, and when the whole palace was 
wrapped in sleep, and the Maiden went to take a bath, he 
sprang forward and gave her a kiss. She said she was quite 
willing to go with him, but she implored him to let her say 
good-bye to her parents. At first he refused ; but as she 
cried, and fell at his feet, at last he gave her leave. Hardly 
had the Maiden stepped up to her father's bed, when he and 
every one else in the palace woke up. The Prince was seized, 
and thrown into prison. 


Next morning the King said to him, ' Your life is forfeited, 
and it can only be spared if you clear away the mountain in 
front of my window, which shuts out the view. It must be 
done in eight days, and if you accomplish the task you shall 
have my daughter as a reward.' 

So the Prince began his labours, and he dug and shovelled 
without ceasing. On the seventh day, when he saw how 
little he had done, he became very sad, and gave up all hope. 
However, in the evening the Fox appeared and said, ' You 
do not deserve any help from me, but lie down and go to sleep ; 
I will do the work.' In the morning when he woke and looked 
out of the window, the mountain had disappeared. 

Overjoyed, the Prince hurried to the King and told him 
that his condition was fulfilled, and, whether he liked it or 
not, he must keep his word and give him his daughter. 

So they both went away together, and before long the 
faithful Fox joined them. 

' You certainly have got the best thing of all,' said he ; ' but 
to the Maiden of the golden palace the Golden Horse belongs.' 

4 How am I to get it ? ' asked the Prince. 

' Oh ! I will tell you that,' answered the Fox. ' First take 
the beautiful Maiden to the King who sent you to the golden 
palace. There will be great joy when you appear, and they 
will bring out the Golden Horse to you. Mount it at once, 
and shake hands with everybody, last of all with the beautiful 
Maiden ; and when you have taken her hand firmly, pull her 
up beside you with a swing and gallop away. No one will be 
able to catch you, for the horse goes faster than the wind.' 

All this was successfully done, and the Prince carried off 
the beautiful Maiden on the Golden Horse. 

The Fox was not far off, and he said to the Prince, ' Now I 
will help you to get the Golden Bird, too. When you approach 
the castle where the Golden Bird lives, let the Maiden dis- 
mount, and I will take care of her. Then ride with the Golden 
Horse into the courtyard of the castle ; there will be great 
rejoicing when they see you, and they will bring out the 



Golden Bird to you. As soon as you have the cage in your 
hand, gallop back to us and take up the Maiden again.' 

The Prince carried off the beautiful Maiden on the 
Golden Horse. 

When these plans had succeeded, and the Prince was ready 
to ride on with all his treasures, the Fox said to him : 


* Now you must reward me for my help.' 

' What do you want ? ' asked the Prince. 

' When you reach that wood, shoot me dead and cut off my 
head and my paws.' 

' That would indeed be gratitude 1 ' said the Prince. ' I 
can't possibly promise to do such a thing.' 

The Fox said, ' If you won't do it, I must leave you ; 
but before I go I will give you one more piece of advice. Beware 
of two things buy no gallows-birds, and don't sit on the edge 
of a well.' Saying which, he ran off into the wood. 

The Prince thought, ' That is a strange animal ; what 
whims he has. Who on earth would want to buy gallows- 
birds ! And the desire to sit on the edge of a well has never 
yet seized me 1 ' 

He rode on with the beautiful Maiden, and the road led 
him through the village where his two brothers had stayed 
behind. There was a great hubbub in the village, and when 
he asked what it was about, he was told that two persons 
were going to be hanged. When he got nearer he saw that they 
were his brothers, who had wasted their possessions and done 
all sorts of evil deeds. He asked if they could not be set free. 

' Yes, if you '11 ransom them,' answered the people ; ' but 
why will you throw your money away in buying off such 
wicked people ? ' 

He did not stop to reflect, however, but paid the ransom 
for them, and when they were set free they all journeyed on 

They came to the wood where they had first met the Fox. 
It was deliciously cool there, while the sun was broiling out- 
side, so the two brothers said, ' Let us sit down here by the 
well to rest a little and eat and drink.' The Prince agreed, 
and during the conversation he forgot what he was about, 
and, never dreaming of any foul play, seated himself on the 
edge of the well. But his two brothers threw him backwards 
into it, and went home to their father, taking with them the 
Maiden, the Horse, and the Bird. 



' Here we bring you not only the Golden Bird, but the 
Golden Horse, and the Maiden from the golden palace, as 
our booty.' 

Thereupon there was great rejoicing ; but the Horse would 
not eat, the Bird would not sing, and the Maiden sat and 
wept all day. 

The youngest brother had not perished, however. Happily 
the well was dry, and he fell upon soft moss without taking 
any harm ; only, he could not get out. 

Even in this great strait the faithful Fox did not forsake 
him, but came leaping down and scolded him for not taking 
his advice. ' I can't leave you to your fate, though ; I must 
help you to get back to the light of day.' He told him to 
take tight hold of his tail, and then he dragged him up. ' You 
are not out of every danger even now,' said the Fox. ' Your 
brothers were not sure of your death, so they have set watchers 
all over the wood to kill you if they see you.' 

A poor old man was sitting by the roadside, and the Prince 
exchanged clothes with him, and by this means he succeeded 
in reaching the King's court. 

Nobody recognised him, but the Bird began to sing, the 
Horse began to eat, and the beautiful Maiden left off 

In astonishment the King asked, ' What does all this mean ? ' 

The Maiden answered : ' I do not know ; but I was very 
sad, and now I am gay. It seems to me that my true bride- 
groom must have come.' 

She told the King all that had happened, although the two 
brothers had threatened her with death if she betrayed any- 
thing. The King ordered every person in the palace to be 
brought before him. Among them came the Prince disguised 
as an old man in all his rags ; but the Maiden knew him at 
once, and fell on his neck. The wicked brothers were seized 
and put to death ; but the Prince was married to the beautiful 
Maiden, and proclaimed heir to the King. 

But what became of the poor Fox ? Long afterwards, 


when the Prince went out into the fields one day, he met the 
Fox, who said : ' You have everything that you can desire, 
but there is no end to my misery. It still lies in your power 
to release me.' And again he implored the Prince to shoot 
him dead, and to cut off his head and his paws. 

At last the Prince consented to do as he was asked, and no 
sooner was it done than the Fox was changed into a man ; 
no other than the brother of the beautiful Princess, at last 
set free from the evil spell which so long had lain upon him. 

There was nothing now wanting to their happiness for the 
rest of their lives. 


The Mouse, the Bird, and the Sausage 

ONCE upon a time, a Mouse, a Bird, and a Sausage went 
into partnership ; they kept house together long and 
amicably, and thus had increased their possessions. 
It was the Bird's work to fly to the forest every day and bring 
back wood. The Mouse had to carry water, make up the 
fire, and set the table, while the Sausage did the cooking. 

Whoever is too well off is always eager for something new. 

One day the Bird met a friend, to whom it sang the praises 
of its comfortable circumstances. But the other bird scolded 
it, and called it a poor creature who did all the hard work, 
while the other two had an easy time at home. For when the 
Mouse had made up the fire, and carried the water, she betook 
herself to her little room to rest till she was called to lay the 
table. The Sausage only had to stay by the hearth and take 
care that the food was nicely cooked ; when it was nearly 
dinner-time, she passed herself once or twice through the 
broth and the vegetables, and they were then buttered, salted, 
and flavoured, ready to eat. Then the Bird came home, 
laid his burden aside, and they all sat down to table ; and 
after their meal they slept their fill till morning. It was indeed 
a delightful life. 

Another day the Bird, owing to the instigations of his 
friend, declined to go and fetch any more wood, saying that 
he had been drudge long enough, and had only been their 
dupe ; they must now make a change and try some other 

In spite of the fervent entreaties of the Mouse and the 
Sausage, the Bird got his way. They decided to draw lots, 


nnd the lot fell on the Sausage, who was to carry the wood ; 
the Mouse became cook, and the Bird was to fetch water. 

What was the result ? 

The Sausage went out into the forest, the Bird made up 
the fire, while the Mouse put on the pot and waited alone for 
the Sausage to come home, bringing wood for the next day. 
But the Sausage stayed away so long that the other two 
suspected something wrong, and the Bird flew out to take 
the air in the hope of meeting her. Not far off he fell in with 

The Mouse had to carry water, while the Sausage did the cooking. 

a Dog which had met the poor Sausage and fallen upon her as 
lawful prey, seized her, and quickly swallowed her. 

The Bird complained bitterly to the Dog of his barefaced 
robbery, but it was no good ; for the Dog said he had found 
forged letters on the Sausage, whereby her life was forfeit to 

The Bird took the wood and flew sadly home with it, and 
related what he had seen and heard. They were much upset, 
but they determined to do the best they could and stay 
together. So the Bird laid the table, and the Mouse prepared 
their meal. She tried to cook it, and, like the Sausage, to 
dip herself in the vegetables so as to flavour them. But before 



she got well into the midst of them she came to a stand- 
still, and in the attempt lost her hair, skin, and life itself. 

When the Bird came back and wanted to serve up the meal, 
there was no cook to be seen. The Bird in his agitation 
threw the wood about, called and searched everywhere, but 
could not find his cook. Then, owing to his carelessness, the 
wood caught fire and there was a blaze. The Bird hastened 
to fetch water, but the bucket fell into the well and the Bird 
with it ; he could not recover himself, and so he was drowned. 


The Bird took the wood and dew t>a.tily home with it. 


Mother Hulda 

THERE was once a widow who had two daughters ; 
one of them was beautiful and industrious, the other 
was ugly and lazy. She liked the ugly, lazy one 
best, because she was her own daughter. The other one had 
all the rough work, and was made the Cinderella at home. 
The poor girl had to sit in the street by a well, spinning till 
her fingers bled. 

Now one day her bobbin got some blood upon it, and she 
stooped down to the well to rinse it, but it fell out of her hand 
into the water. She cried, and ran to tell her stepmother 
of her misfortune. 

Her stepmother scolded her violently and without mercy, 
and at last said, ' If you have let the bobbin fall into the 
water, you must go in after it and fetch it out.' 

The maiden went back to the well and did not know what 
to do, and in her terror she sprang into the water to try and 
find the bobbin. 

She lost consciousness, and when she came to herself she 
was in a beautiful meadow dotted with flowers, and the sun 
was shining brightly. She walked on till she came to a baker's 
oven full of bread ; the Loaves called out to her, ' Oh, draw 
us out, draw us out, or we shall burn 1 We are over-baked 
already 1 ' 

So she went up and drew them out one by one with a 
baker's shovel. 

Then she went a little further, and came to an Apple-tree 
covered with apples, which called out to her. ' Oh, shake us 
down, shake us down, we are over-ripe ! ' 

So she shook the tree, and the apples fell like rain. She 



shook till there were no more left, and when she had gathered 
them all into a heap, went on her way. 

At last she came to a little house, out of which an old 
woman was looking. She had very large teeth, and the 
maiden was so frightened that she wanted to run away. 

But the old woman called her, and said, ' What are you 
afraid of, dear child ? Stay with me, and if you can do all 
kinds of housework well, I shall be very pleased. But you 
must be very particular how you make my bed ; it must be 

yP *^?KI -( 

At last she came to a little house, out of which an old 
woman was looking. 

thoroughly shaken, so that the feathers fly, then it snows in the 
world. I am Mother Hulda.' 1 

As the old woman spoke so kindly to her, she took heart 
and agreed to stay, and she began her duties at once. 

She did everything to the old woman's satisfaction, and 
shook up the bed with such a will, that the feathers flew about 
like snow. So she led a very happy life ; she had no hard 
words, but good food, both roast and boiled, every day. 

Now after she had been some time with Mother Hulda, 
she grew sad. At first she did not know what was the matter, 

1 According to a Hessian legend, when it snows, Mother Hulda is making her bed. 


but at last she discovered that she was homesick. Although 
everything here was a thousand times nicer than at home, 
still she had a yearning to go back. 

At last she said to the old woman, ' Although I had nothing 
but misery at home, and happy as I have been here, still I 
must go back to my own people.' 

Mother Hulda said, ' I am pleased that you ask to go 
home, and as you have been so faithful to me, I will take you 
back myself.' 

She took her by the hand and led her to a great gate. The 
gate was opened, and as the maiden was passing through, a 
heavy shower of gold fell upon her, and remained sticking, so 
that she was covered from head to foot with it. 

' This is your reward, because you have been so industrious,' 
said Mother Hulda. She also gave her back her bobbin which 
had fallen into the well. 

Then the gate was shut, and the maiden found herself in 
the upper world not far from her mother's house. 

When she reached the courtyard the Cock was sitting on 
the well, and he cried 

' Cock-a-doodle-doo, 
Our golden maid, I see, 
Has now come home to me.' 

Then she went into her mother, and, as she was bedecked 
with gold, she was well received both by her mother and sister. 
The maiden told them all that had happened to her, and when 
her mother heard how she had got all her wealth, she wanted 
her ugly, lazy daughter to have the same. So she made her 
sit by the well and spin ; and so that there should be blood 
upon her bobbin, she scratched her finger, and thrust her hand 
into a blackthorn bush. Then she threw the bobbin into the 
water and jumped in after it. She found herself in the same 
beautiful meadow, and walked along the same path. 

When she reached the baker's oven, the Loaves called 
out again, ' Draw us out, draw us out, or we shall be burnt 1 ' 
H 113 


Then the lazy girl answered, ' I should soil my fingers,' 
and went on. 

Soon she came to the Apple-tree, and the apples cried, 
* Shake us down, shake us down ! We are all ripe ! ' 

' A fine business indeed,' she answered. ' One of you 
might fall upon my head.' And she passed on. 

When she came to Mother Hulda's house, she was not 
afraid of her big teeth, as she had heard all about them, 
and she immediately hired herself to the old woman. 
The first day she made a great effort ; she was industrious, 
and obeyed the orders Mother Hulda gave her, for she 
thought of all the gold. But on the second day even, 

she began to be lazy, and on the 

third she was still more so. 

She would not get up in 

So the lazy girl went home, but slie was 
quite covered with pitch. 


the morning, nor did she make Mother Ilulda's bed as she 
ought ; nor shake it till the feathers 
came out. 

Mother Hulda soon grew tired 
of this, and discharged her. 

The lazy girl was well 
enough pleased to go, 
and thought now the 

shower of gold 
would come. 
Mother Hulda con- 
ducted her to the same 
gate; but when she passed 
through, a shower of pitch fell 
upon her, instead of a shower 
of gold. 

' That is the reward for your 
service,' said Mother Hulda, as she shut the gate behind her. 

So the lazy girl went home, but she was quite covered 
with pitch ; and when the Cock on the well saw her, he cried 

' Cock-a-doodle-doo, 
Our dirty maid, I see, 
Has now come back to me.' 

The pitch stuck to her as long as she lived ; she could 
never get rid of it. 


Red Riding Hood 

THERE was once a sweet little maiden, who was loved 
by all who knew her ; but she was especially dear 
to her Grandmother, who did not know how to make 
enough of the child. Once she gave her a little red velvet 
cloak. It was so becoming, and she liked it so much, that she 
would never wear anything else ; and so she got the name of 
Red Riding Hood. 

One day her Mother said to her : ' Come here, Red Riding 
Hood, take this cake and a bottle of wine to Grandmother, 
she is weak and ill, and they will do her good. Go quickly, 
before it gets hot, and don't loiter by the way, or run, or you 
will fall down and break the bottle, and there would be no 
wine for Grandmother. When you get there, don't forget 
to say " Good morning " prettily, without staring about you.' 

* I will do just as you tell me,' Red Riding Hood promised 
her Mother. 

Her Grandmother lived away in the woods, a good half- 
hour from the village. When she got to the wood, she met a 
Wolf ; but Red Riding Hood did not know what a wicked 
animal he was, so she was not a bit afraid of him. 

' Good-morning, Red Riding Hood,' he said. 

4 Good-morning, Wolf,' she answered. 

' Whither away so early, Red Riding Hood ? ' 

' To Grandmother's.' 

4 What have you got in your basket ? ' 

' Cake and wine ; we baked yesterday, so I 'm taking a 
cake to Grannie ; she wants something to make her well.' 

' Where does your Grandmother live, Red Riding Hood ? ' 


* A good quarter of an hour further into the wood. Tier 
house stands under three big oak trees, near a hedge of nut 
trees which you must know,' said Red Riding Hood. 

The Wolf thought : ' This tender little creature will be a 
plump morsel ; she will be nicer than the old woman. I 
must be cunning, and snap them both up.' 

He walked along with Red Riding Hood for a while, then 
he said : ' Look at the pretty flowers, Red Riding Hood. 
Why don't you look about you ? I don't believe you even hear 
the birds sing, you are just as solemn as if you were going to 
school : everything else is so gay out here in the woods.' 

Red Riding Hood raised her eyes, and when she saw the 
sunlight dancing through the trees, and all the bright flowers, 
she thought : ' I 'm sure Grannie would be pleased if I took 
her a bunch of fresh flowers. It is still quite early, I shall have 
plenty of time to pick them.' 

So she left the path, and wandered off among the trees to 
pick the flowers. Each time she picked one, she always saw 
another prettier one further on. So she went deeper and 
deeper into the forest. 

In the meantime the Wolf went straight off to the Grand- 
mother's cottage, and knocked at the door. 

' Who is there ? ' 

' Red Riding Hood, bringing you a cake and some wine. 
Open the door ! ' 

' Press the latch ! ' cried the old woman. ' I am too weak 
to get up.' 

The Wolf pressed the latch, and the door sprang open. 
He went straight in and up to the bed without saying a word, 
and ate up the poor old woman. Then he put on her night- 
dress and nightcap, got into bed and drew the curtains. 

Red Riding Hood ran about picking flowers till she could 
carry no more, and then she remembered her Grandmother 
again. She was astonished when she got to the house to find 
the door open, and when she entered the room everything 
seemed so strange. 



She felt quite frightened, but she did not know why. 
' Generally I like coming to see Grandmother so much,' she 
thought. She cried : ' Good-morning, Grandmother,' but 
she received no answer. 

Then she went up to the bed and drew the curtain back. 
There lay her Grandmother, but she had drawn her cap down 
over her face, and she looked very odd. 

' O Grandmother, what big ears you have got,' she said. 

' The better to hear with, my dear.' 

' Grandmother, what big eyes you have got.' 

* The better to see with, my dear.' 

' What big hands you have got, Grandmother.' 
' The better to catch hold of you with, my dear.' 
1 But, Grandmother, what big teeth you have got. 5 

* The better to eat you up with, my dear.' 

Hardly had the Wolf said this, than he made a spring out 
of bed, and devoured poor little Red Riding Hood. When the 
Wolf had satisfied himself, he went back to bed and he was 
soon snoring loudly. 

A Huntsman went past the house, and thought, ' How 
loudly the old lady is snoring ; I must see if there is anything 
the matter with her.' 

So he went into the house, and up to the bed, where he 
found the Wolf fast asleep. ' Do I find you here, you old 
sinner ? ' he said. ' Long enough have I sought you.' 

He raised his gun to shoot, when it just occurred to him 
that perhaps the Wolf had eaten up the old lady, and that she 
might still be saved. So he took a knife and began cutting 
open the sleeping Wolf. At the first cut he saw the little 
red cloak, and after a few more slashes, the little girl sprang 
out, and cried : ' Oh, how frightened I was, it was so dark 
inside the Wolf ! ' Next the old Grandmother came out, 
alive, but hardly able to breathe. 

Red Riding Hood brought some big stones with which 
they filled the Wolf, so that when he woke and tried to spring 
away, they dragged him back, and he fell down dead. 


They were all quite happy now. The Huntsman skinned 
the Wolf, and took the skin home. The Grandmother ate 
the cake and drank the wine which Red Riding Hood had 
brought, and she soon felt quite strong. Red Riding Hood 
thought : ' I will never again wander off into the forest as 
long as I live, if my Mother forbids it.' 


The Robber Bridegroom 

THERE was once a Miller, who had a beautiful daughter. 
When she grew up, he wanted to have her married 
and settled. He thought, ' If a suitable bridegroom 
come and ask for my daughter, I will give her to him.' 

Soon after a suitor came who appeared to be rich, and as 
the Miller knew nothing against him he promised his daughter 
to him. The Maiden, however, did not like him as a bride 
ought to like her bridegroom ; nor had she any faith in him. 
Whenever she looked at him, or thought about him, a shudder 
came over her. One day he said to her, ' You are my 
betrothed, and yet you have never been to see me.' 

The Maiden answered : ' I don't even know where your 
house is.' 

Then the Bridegroom said, ' My house is in the depths of 
the forest.' 

She made excuses, and said she could not find the way. 

The Bridegroom answered : ' Next Sunday you must come 
and see me without fail. I have invited some other guests, 
and, so that you may be able to find the way, I will strew some 
ashes to guide you.' 

When Sunday came, and the Maiden was about to start, 
she was frightened, though she did not know why. So that 
she should be sure of finding her way back she filled her 
pockets with peas and lentils. At the entrance to the forest 
she found the track of ashes, and followed it ; but every step 
or two she scattered a few peas right and left. 

She walked nearly the whole day, right into the midst of 
the forest, where it was almost dark. Here she saw a solitary 
house, which she did not like ; it was so dark and dismal. 


She went in, but found nobody, and there was dead silence. 
Suddenly a voice cried 

'Turn buck, turn back, thou bonnie Bride, 
Nor in this house of death abide. 1 

The Maiden looked up, and saw that the voice came from 
a bird in a cage hanging on the wall. Once more it made the 
same cry 

' Turn back, turn back, thou bonnie Bride, 
Nor in this house of death abide.' 

The beautiful Bride went from room to room, all over the 
house, but they were all empty ; not a soul was to be seen. 
At last she reached the cellar, and there she found an old, old 
woman with a shaking head. 

' Can you tell me if my Bridegroom lives here ? ' 

* Alas ! poor child,' answered the old woman, ' little dost 
thou know where thou art ; thou art in a murderer's den. 
Thou thoughtest thou wast about to be married, but death will 
be thy marriage. See here, I have had to fill this kettle with 
water, and when they have thee in their power they will kill 
thee without mercy, cook, and eat thee, for they are eaters 
of human flesh. Unless I take pity on thee and save thee, 
thou art lost.' Then the old woman led her behind a great 
cask, where she could not be seen. ' Be as quiet as a mouse,' 
she said. ' Don't stir, or all will be lost. To-night, when the 
murderers are asleep, we will fly. I have long waited for an 

Hardly had she said this when the riotous crew came home. 
They dragged another maiden with them, but as they were 
quite drunk they paid no attention to her shrieks and 
lamentations. They gave her wine to drink, three glasses 
full red, white, and yellow. After she had drunk them she 
fell down dead. The poor Bride hidden behind the cask 
was terrified ; she trembled and shivered, for she saw plainly 
to what fate she was destined. 



One of the men noticed a gold ring on the little finger of 
the murdered girl, and as he could not pull it off he took an 
axe and chopped the finger off ; but it sprang up into the air, 
and fell right into the lap of the Bride behind the cask. The 
man took a light to look for it, but he could not find it. One 
of the others said, ' Have you looked behind the big cask ? ' 

They hurried away as quickly as they could. 

But the old woman called out : * Come and eat, and leave 
the search till to-morrow ; the finger won't run away.' 

The murderer said : ' The old woman is right,' and they 
gave up the search and sat down to supper. But the old 
woman dropped a sleeping draught into their wine, so they 
soon lay down, went to sleep, and snored lustily. 

When the Bride heard them snoring she came out from 
behind the cask ; but she was obliged to step over the sleepers, 
as they lay in rows upon the floor. She was dreadfully afraid 
of touching them, but God helped her, and she got through 
without mishap. The old woman went with her and opened 


the door, and they hurried away as quickly as they could from 
this vile den. 

All the ashes had been blown away by the wind, but the 
peas and lentils had taken root and shot up, and showed them 
the way in the moonlight. 

They walked the whole night, and reached the mill in the 
morning. The Maiden told her father all that she had been 

Wlien the day which had been fixed for the wedding came, 
the Bridegroom appeared, and the Miller invited all his friends 
and relations. As they sat at table, each one was asked to tell 
some story. The Bride was very silent, but when it came 
to her turn, and the Bridegroom said, ' Come, my love, have 
you nothing to say ? Pray tell us something,' she answered : 

' I will tell you a dream I have had. I was walking alone 
in a wood, and I came to a solitary house where not a soul was 
to be seen. A cage was hanging on the wall of one of the 
rooms, and in it there was a bird which cried 

" Turn back, turn back, thou bonnie Bride, 
Nor in this house of death abide." 

It repeated the same words twice. This was only a dream, 
my love ! I walked through all the rooms, but they were all 
empty and dismal. At last I went down to the cellar, and 
there sat a very old woman, with a shaking head. I asked 
her. " Does my Bridegroom live here ? " She answered, 
' Alas, you poor child, you are in a murderer's den ! Your 
Bridegroom indeed lives here, but he will cut you to pieces, 
cook you, and eat you." This was only a dream, my love I 
Then the old woman hid me behind a cask, and hardly had she 
done so when the murderers came home, dragging a maiden 
with them. They gave her three kinds of wine to drink 
red, white, and yellow ; and after drinking them she fell 
down dead. My love, I was only dreaming this ! Then they 
took her things off and cut her to pieces. My love, I was only 
dreaming ! One of the murderers saw a gold ring on the 



girl's little finger, and, as he could not pull it off, he chopped 
off the finger ; but the finger bounded into the air, and fell 
behind the cask on to my lap. Here is the finger with the 

At these words she produced the finger and showed it to 
the company. 

When the Bridegroom heard these words, he turned as 
pale as ashes, and tried to escape ; but the guests seized him 
and handed him over to justice. And he and all his band were 
executed for their crimes. 


Tom Thumb 

A POOR Peasant sat one evening by his hearth and 
poked the fire, while his Wife sat opposite spinning. 
He said : ' What a sad thing it is that we have no 
children ; our home is so quiet, while other folk's houses are 
noisy and cheerful.' 

' Yes,' answered his Wife, and she sighed ; ' even if it 
were an only one, and if it were no bigger than my thumb, I 
should be quite content ; we would love it with all our hearts.' 

Now, some time after this, she had a little boy who was 
strong and healthy, but was no bigger than a thumb. Then 
they said : ' Well, our wish is fulfilled, and, small as he is, 
we will love him dearly ' ; and because of his tiny stature 
they called him Tom Thumb. They let him want for nothing, 
yet still the child grew no bigger, but remained the same size 
as when he was born. Still, he looked out on the world with 
intelligent eyes, and soon showed himself a clever and agile 
creature, who was lucky in all he attempted. 

One day, when the Peasant was preparing to go into the 
forest to cut wood, he said to himself : ' I wish I had some one 
to bring the cart after me.' 

' O Father ! ' said Tom Thumb, ' I will soon bring it. 
You leave it to me ; it shall be there at the appointed time.' 

Then the Peasant laughed, and said : ' How can that be ? 
You are much too small even to hold the reins.' 

' That doesn't matter, if only Mother will harness the 
horse,' answered Tom. ' I will sit in his ear and tell him where 
to go.' 

' Very well,' said the Father ; ' we will try it for once.' 

When the time came, the Mother harnessed the horse, set 
Tom in his ear, and then the little creature called out ' Gee-up ' 


Tom Thumb. 


and ' Whoa ' in turn, and directed it where to go. It went 
quite well, just as though it were being driven by its master ; 
and they went the right way to the wood. Now it happened 
that while the cart was turning a corner, and Tom was calling 
to the horse, two strange men appeared on the scene. 

' My goodness,' said one, ' what is this ? There goes a 
cart, and a driver is calling to the horse, but there is nothing to 
be seen.' 

' There is something queer about this,' said the other ; ' we 
will follow the cart and see where it stops.' 

The cart went on deep into the forest, and arrived quite 
safely at the place where the wood was cut. 

When Tom spied his Father, he said : ' You see, Father, 
here I am with the cart ; now lift me down.' The Father 
held the horse with his left hand, and took his little son out 
of its ear with the right. Then Tom sat down quite happily 
on a straw. 

When the two strangers noticed him, they did not know 
what to say for astonishment. 

Then one drew the other aside, and said : * Listen, that 
little creature might make our fortune if we were to show him 
in the town for money. We will buy him.' 

So they went up to the Peasant, and said : ' Sell us the 
little man ; he shall be well looked after with us.' 

' No,' said the Peasant ; ' he is the delight of my eyes, 
and I will not sell him for all the gold in the world.' 

But Tom Thumb, when he heard the bargain, crept up by 
the folds of his Father's coat, placed himself on his shoulder, 
and whispered in his ear : ' Father, let me go ; I will soon 
come back again.' 

Then his Father gave him to the two men for a fine piece 
of gold. 

' Where will you sit ? ' they asked him. 

' Oh, put me on the brim of your hat, then I can walk up 
and down and observe the neighbourhood without falling 



They did as he wished, and when Tom had said good-bye 
to his Father, they went away with him. 

They walked on till it was twilight, when the little man 
said : ' You must lift me down.' 

' Stay where you are,' answered the Man on whose head 
he sat. 

' No,' said Tom ; ' I will come down. Lift me down 

The Man took off his hat and set the little creature in a 
field by the wayside. He jumped and crept about for a time, 
here and there among the sods, then slipped suddenly into a 
mouse-hole which he had discovered. 

' Good evening, gentlemen, just you go home without me,' 
he called out to them in mockery. 

They ran about and poked with sticks into the mouse-hole, 
but all in vain. Tom crept further and further back, and, 
as it soon got quite dark, they were forced to go home, full of 
anger, and with empty purses. 

When Tom noticed that they were gone, he crept out of 
his underground hiding-place again. ' It is dangerous walking 
in this field in the dark,' he said ; ' one might easily break 
one's leg or one's neck.' Luckily, he came to an empty snail 
shell. ' Thank goodness,' he said ; ' I can pass the night in 
safety here,' and he sat down. 

Not long after, just when he was about to go to sleep, he 
heard two men pass by. One said : ' How shall we set about 
stealing the rich parson's gold and silver ? ' 

' I can tell you,' interrupted Tom. 

' What was that ? ' said one robber in a fright. ' I heard 
some one speak.' 

They remained standing and listened. 

Then Tom spoke again : ' Take me with you and I will 
help you.' 

* Where are you ? ' they asked. 

' Just look on the ground and see where the voice comes 
from,' he answered. 


At last the thieves found him, and lifted him up. ' You 
little urchin, are you going to help us ? ' 

' Yes,' he said ; ' I will creep between the iron bars in the 
pastor's room, and will hand out to you what you want.' 

' All right,' they said, ' we will see what you can do.' 

When they came to the Parsonage, Tom crept into the 
room, but called out immediately with all his strength to the 
others : ' Do you want everything that is here ? ' 

The thieves were frightened, and said : ' Do speak softly, 
and don't wake any one.' 

But Tom pretended not to understand, and called out 
again : ' What do you want ? Everything ? ' 

The Cook, who slept above, heard him and sat up in bed 
and listened. But the thieves were so frightened that they 
retreated a little way. At last they summoned up courage 
again, and thought to themselves, ' The little rogue wants to 
tease us.' So they came back and whispered to him : ' Now, 
do be serious, and hand us out something.' 

Then Tom called out again, as loud as he could, ' I will 
give you everything if only you will hold out your hands.' 

The Maid, who was listening intently, heard him quite 
distinctly, jumped out of bed, and stumbled to the door. 
The thieves turned and fled, running as though wild huntsmen 
were after them. But the Maid, seeing nothing, went to get 
a light. When she came back with it, Tom, without being 
seen, slipped out into the barn, and the Maid, after she had 
searched every corner and found nothing, went to bed again, 
thinking she had been dreaming with her eyes and ears open. 

Tom Thumb climbed about in the hay, and found a splendid 
place to sleep. There he determined to rest till day came, 
and then to go home to his parents. But he had other experi- 
ences to go through first. This world is full of trouble and 
sorrow ! 

The Maid got up in the grey dawn to feed the cows. First 
she went into the barn, where she piled up an armful of hay, 
the very bundle in which poor Tom was asleep. But he slept 
i 129 


so soundly that he knew nothing till he was almost in the 
mouth of the cow, who was eating him up with the hay. 

* Heavens ! ' he said, ' however did I get into this mill ? ' 
but he soon saw where he was, and the great thing was to 
avoid being crushed between the cow's teeth. At last, whether 
he liked it or not, he had to go down the cow's throat. 

' The windows have been forgotten in this house,' he said. 
' The sun does not shine into it, and no light has been 

Altogether he was very ill-pleased with his quarters, and, 
worst of all, more and more hay came in at the door, and the 
space grew narrower and narrower. At last he called out, 
in his fear, as loud as he could, ' Don't give me any more food. 
Don't give me any more food.' 

The Maid was just milking the cow, and when she heard 
the same voice as in the night, without seeing any one, she was 
frightened, and slipped from her stool and spilt the milk. 
Then, in the greatest haste, she ran to her master, and said : 
' Oh, your Reverence, the cow has spoken ! ' 

' You are mad,' he answered ; but he went into the stable 
himself to see what was happening. 

Scarcely had he set foot in the cow-shed before Tom began 
again, ' Don't bring me any more food.' 

Then the Pastor was terrified too, and thought that the 
cow must be bewitched ; so he ordered it to be killed. It was 
accordingly slaughtered, but the stomach, in which Tom was 
hidden, was thrown into the manure heap. Tom had the 
greatest trouble in working his way out. Just as he stuck 
out his head, a hungry Wolf ran by and snapped up the whole 
stomach with one bite. But still Tom did not lose courage. 
' Perhaps the Wolf will listen to reason,' he said. So he called 
out, * Dear Wolf, I know where you would find a magnificent 

* Where is it to be had ? ' asked the Wolf. 

' Why, in such and such a house,' answered Tom. ' You 
must squeeze through the grating of the store-room window, 


and there you will find cakes, bacon, and sausages, as many 
as you can possibly eat ' ; and he went on to describe his 
father's house. 

The Wolf did not wait to hear this twice, and at night 
forced himself in through the grating, and ate to his heart's 
content. When he was satisfied, he wanted to go away again ; 
but he had grown so fat that he could not get out the same 
way. Tom had reckoned on this, and began to make a great 
commotion inside the Wolf's body, struggling and screaming 
with all his might. 

' Be quiet,' said the Wolf ; ' you will wake up the people 
of the house.' 

' All very fine,' answered Tom. ' You have eaten your 
fill, and now I am going to make merry ' ; and he began to 
scream again with all his might. 

At last his father and mother woke up, ran to the room, 
and looked through the crack of the door. When they saw 
a Wolf, they went away, and the husband fetched his axe, 
and the wife a scythe. 

* You stay behind,' said the man, as they came into the 
room. ' If my blow does not kill him, you must attack him 
and rip up his body.' 

When Tom Thumb heard his Father's voice, he called out : 
* Dear Father, I am here, inside the Wolf's body.' 

Full of joy, his Father cried, ' Heaven be praised ! our dear 
child is found again,' and he bade his wife throw aside the 
scythe that it might not injure Tom. 

Then he gathered himself together, and struck the Wolf 
a blow on the head, so that it fell down lifeless. Then with 
knives and shears they ripped up the body, and took their 
little boy out. 

' Ah,' said his Father, ' what trouble we have been in about 

' Yes, Father, I have travelled about the world, and I am 
thankful to breathe fresh air again.' 

' Wherever have you been ? ' they asked. 



' Down a mouse-hole, in a Cow's stomach, and in a Wolf's 
maw,' he answered ; ' and now I shall stay with you.' 

' And we will never sell you again, for all the riches in the 
world,' they said, kissing and fondling their dear child. 

Then they gave him food and drink, and had new clothes 
made for him, as his own had been spoilt in his travels. 



THERE was once a Miller who was very poor, but he had 
a beautiful daughter. Now, it fell out that he had 
occasion to speak with the King, and, in order to 
give himself an air of importance, he said : ' I have a daughter 
who can spin gold out of straw.' 

The King said to the Miller : ' That is an art in which I 
am much interested. If your daughter is as skilful as you 
say she is, bring her to my castle to-morrow, and I will put her 
to the test.' 

Accordingly, when the girl was brought to the castle, the 
King conducted her to a chamber which was quite full of straw, 
gave her a spinning-wheel and winder, and said, ' Now, set 
to work, and if between to-night and to-morrow at dawn 
you have not spun this straw into gold you must die.' There- 
upon he carefully locked the door of the chamber, and she 
remained alone. 

There sat the unfortunate Miller's daughter, and for the 
life of her did not know what to do. She had not the least 
idea how to spin straw into gold, and she became more and 
more distressed, until at last she began to weep. Then all at 
once the door sprang open, and in stepped a little Mannikin, 
who said : ' Good evening, Mistress Miller, what are you 
weeping so for ? ' 

' Alas ! ' answered the Maiden, ' I 've got to spin gold out 
of straw, and don't know how to do it.' 

Then the Mannikin said, ' What will you give me if I spin 
it for you ? ' 

' My necklace,' said the Maid. 

The little Man took the necklace, sat down before the 



spinning-wheel, and whir whir whir, in a trice the reel was 

Then he fixed another reel, and whir whir whir, thrice 
round, and that too was full ; and so it went on until morning, 
when all the straw was spun and all the reels were full of gold. 

Immediately at sunrise the 
King came, and when he saw 
the gold he was astonished and 
much pleased, but his mind 
became only the more avari- 
cious. So he had the Miller's 
daughter taken to another 
chamber, larger than the for- 
mer one, and full of straw, and 
he ordered her to spin it also 
in one night, as she valued 
her life. 

The Maiden was at her wit's 
end, and began to weep. Then 
again the door sprang open, 
and the little Mannikin ap- 
peared, and said, 'What will 
you give me if I spin the straw 
into gold for you ? ' 

'The ring off my finger,' 
answered the Maiden. 

The little man took the 
ring, began to whir again at 
the wheel, and had by morning 
spun all the straw into gold. 
The King was delighted at sight of the masses of gold, but 
was not even yet satisfied. So he had the Miller's daughter 
taken to a still larger chamber, full of straw, and said, ' This 
must you to-night spin into gold, but if you succeed you shall 
become my Queen.' ' Even if she is only a Miller's daughter,' 
thought he, ' I shan't find a richer woman in the whole world.' 

Then all at uuce the door sprang open, 
and in stepped a little Mannikin. 


When the girl was alone the little Man came again, and 
said for the third time, ' What will you give me if I spin the 
straw for you this time ? ' 

4 1 have nothing more that I can give,' answered the girl. 

4 Well, promise me your first child if you become Queen.' 

' Who knows what may happen,' thought the Miller's 
daughter ; but she did not see any other way of getting out 
of the difficulty, so she promised the little Man what he 
demanded, and in return he spun the straw into gold once 

When the King came in the morning, and found everything 
as he had wished, he celebrated his marriage with her, and the 
Miller's daughter became Queen. 

About a year afterwards a beautiful child was born, but 
the Queen had forgotten all about the little Man. However, 
he suddenly entered her chamber, and said, ' Now, give me 
what you promised.' 

The Queen was terrified, and offered the little Man all the 
wealth of the kingdom if he would let her keep the child. But 
the Mannikin said, ' No ; I would rather have some living 
thing than all the treasures of the world.' Then the Queen 
began to moan and weep to such an extent that the little Man 
felt sorry for her. ' I will give you three days,' said he, ' and 
if within that time you discover my name you shall keep the 

Then during the night the Queen called to mind all the 
names that she had ever heard, and sent a messenger all over 
the country to inquire far and wide what other names there 
were. When the little Man came on the next day, she began 
with Caspar, Melchoir, Balzer, and mentioned all the names 
which she knew, one after the other ; but at every one the 
little Man said : ' No ; that 's not my name.' 

The second day she had inquiries made all round the 
neighbourhood for the names of people living there, and 
suggested to the little Man all the most unusual and strange 


Round the fire an indescribably ridiculous little man was leaping, hopping 
on one leg, and singing. 


* Perhaps your name is Cowribs, Spindleshanks, or 
Spiderlegs ? ' 

But he answered every time, ' No ; that 's not my name.' 
On the third day the messenger came back and said : ' I 
haven't been able to find any new names, but as I came round 
the corner of a wood on a lofty mountain, where the Fox says 
good-night to the Hare, I saw a little house, and in front of the 
house a fire was burning ; and around the fire an indescribably 
ridiculous little man was leaping, hopping on one leg, and 
singing : 

u To-day I bake ; to-morrow I brew my beer ; 
The next day I will bring the Queen's child here. 
Ah ! lucky 'tis that not a soul doth know 
That Rumpelstiltskin is my name, ho ! ho !"' 

Then you can imagine how delighted the Queen was when 
she heard the name, and when presently afterwards the little 
Man came in and asked, ' Now, your Majesty, what is my 
name ? ' at first she asked : 

' Is your name Tom ? * 


' Is it Dick ? ' 


' Is it, by chance, Rumpelstiltskin ? ' 

'The devil told you that! The devil told you that!' 
shrieked the little Man ;1 and in his rage stamped his right foot 
into the ground so deep that he sank up to his waist. 

Then, in his passion, he seized his left leg with both hands, 
and tore himself asunder in the middle. 


The Twelve Huntsmen 

THERE was once a Prince, who was betrothed to a 
Maiden, the daughter of a King, whom he loved very 
much. One day when they were together, and very 
happy, a messenger came from the Prince's father, who was 
lying ill, to summon him home as he wished to see him before 
he died. He said to his beloved, ' I must go away, and leave 
you now ; but I give you this ring as a keepsake. When I am 
King, I will come and fetch you away.' 

Then he rode off, and when he got home he found his father 
on his death-bed. His father said, ' My dear son, I wanted to 
see you once more before I die. Promise to marry the bride I 
have chosen for you,' and he named a certain Princess. 

His son was very sad, and without reflecting promised to 
do what his father wished, and thereupon the King closed his 
eyes and died. 

Now, when the Prince had been proclaimed King, and the 
period of mourning was past, the time came when he had to 
keep his promise to his father. He made his offer to the 
Princess, and it was accepted. His betrothed heard of this, 
and grieved so much over his faithlessness that she very nearly 
died. The King her father asked, ' Dear child, why are you so 
sad ? You shall have whatever you desire.' 

She thought for a moment, then said, ' Dear father, I want 
eleven maidens all exactly like me in face, figure, and height.' 

The King said, ' If it is possible, your wish shall be fulfilled.' 

Then he caused a search to be made all over his kingdom, 

till the eleven maidens were found, all exactly like his daughter. 

The Princess ordered twelve huntsmen's dresses to be made, 

which she commanded the maidens to wear, putting on the 



twelfth herself. Then she took leave of her father, and rode 
away with the maidens to the court of her former bridegroom 
whom she loved so dearly. She asked him if he wanted any 
Huntsmen, and whether he would take them all into his service. 
The King did not recognise her, but, as they were all so hand- 
some, he said Yes, he would engage them. So they all entered 
the King's service. 

Now, the King had a Lion which was a wonderful creature, 
for he knew all secret and hidden things. He said to the King 
one evening, 'You fancy you have twelve Huntsmen there, 
don't you ? ' 

' Yes,' said the King. 

' You are mistaken,' said the Lion. ' They are twelve 

The King answered, ' That can't be true ! How can you 
prove it ? ' 

' Oh, have some peas strewn in your ante-room to-morrow, 
and you will soon see. Men have a firm tread, and when they 
walk on peas they don't move ; but maidens trip and trot and 
slide, and make the peas roll about.' 

The King was pleased with the Lion's advice, and ordered 
the peas to be strewn on the floor. 

There was, however, a servant of the King who favoured the 
Huntsmen, and when he heard that they were to be put to this 
test, he went and told them all about it, and said, ' The Lion is 
going to prove to the King that you are maidens.' 

The Princess thanked him, and said afterwards to her 
maidens, ' Do your utmost to tread firmly on the peas.' 

Next morning, when the King ordered them to be called, 
they walked into the ante-chamber with so firm a tread that 
not a pea moved When they had gone away, the King said 
to the Lion, ' You lied ; they walked just like men.' 

But the Lion answered, ' They had been warned of the test, 
and were prepared for it. Just let twelve spinning-wheels be 
brought into the ante-chamber, and they will be delighted at 
the sight, as no man would be.' 



This plan also pleased the King, and he ordered the spinning 
wheels. But again the kind servant warned the Huntsmen of 
the plan. When they were alone, the Princess said to her 
maidens, ' Control yourselves, and don't so much as look at the 

When the King next morning sent for the Huntsmen, they 
walked through the ante-chamber without even glancing at 
the spinning-wheels. 

Then the King said to the Lion, ' You lied to me. They are 
men ; they never looked at the spinning-wheels.' 

The Lion answered, ' They knew that they were on their 
trial, and restrained themselves.' 

But the King would not believe him any more. 

The twelve Huntsmen always went with the King on his 
hunting expeditions, and the longer he had them, the better he 
liked them. Now, it happened one day when they were out 
hunting, that the news came of the royal bride's approach. 

When the true bride heard it, the shock was so great that 
her heart nearly stopped, and she fell down in a dead faint. 
The King, thinking something had happened to his favourite 
Huntsman, ran to help him, and pulled off his glove. Then he 
saw the ring which he had given to his first betrothed, and when 
he looked her in the face he recognised her. He was so moved 
that he kissed her, and when she opened her eyes he said, 
' Thou art mine, and I am thine, and nobody in the world shall 
separate us.' 

Then he sent a messenger to the other bride, and begged her 
to go home, as he already had a wife, and he who has an old 
dish does not need a new one. Their marriage was then 
celebrated, and the Lion was taken into favour again, as, 
after all, he had spoken the truth. 


The Old Man and his Grandson 

THERE was once a very old Man, so old that his eyes 
had become dim, and his limbs trembled. 

When he sat at table his hands shook so that he 
could hardly hold his spoon, and some- 
times he spilt soup on the tablecloth. 
This vexed his son and daughter-in-law, 
and they would no longer let him have 
a place at the table, but made him sit 
in a corner by the stove. 

They gave him his food in an 
earthenware bowl, and a very scanty 
portion too. He sat in his place look- 
ing at the others at table, and the tears 
came into his eyes. 

One day his trembling hands could 
no longer hold the bowl ; it fell to the 
ground and broke to atoms. 

The young wife scolded him, but he 
said nothing; then she bought him a 
wooden bowl for a few coppers, and he 
had nothing else to eat from. 

As they were sitting together one 
day, the little Grandson, who was four 
years old, collected a lot of bits of wood. 
' What are you doing there ? ' asked 
his Father. 

'I am making a little trough,' an- 
swered the Child, ' for you and Mother 
to eat out of when I am big.' 
Husband and wife looked at each other for a while till their 
tears began to fall. Then they led the old Grandfather up to 
the table to take his meal with them. 

And they never again said anything to him when he spilt 
his food. 


The Little Peasant 

THERE was once a village in which there was only one 
poor Peasant ; all the others were very well-to-do, 
so they called him the Little Peasant. He had not 
even got a single cow, far less money with which to buy one, 
though he and his Wife would have been so glad to possess one. 

One day he said to his Wife, ' Look here, I have a good 
idea : there is my Godfather, the joiner, he shall make us a 
wooden calf and paint it brown, so that it looks like a real one, 
and perhaps some day it will grow into a cow.' 

This plan pleased his Wife, so his Godfather, the joiner, cut 
out and carved the calf and painted it properly, and made its 
head bent down to look as if it were eating. 

Next morning, when the cows were driven out, the Little 
Peasant called the Cowherd in, and said : ' Look here, I have 
a little calf, but it is very small and has to be carried.' 

The Cowherd said : ' All right,' took it in his arms, carried 
it to the meadow and put it down in the grass. 

The calf stood there all day and appeared to be eating, and 
the Cowherd said, ' It will soon be able to walk by itself ; see 
how it eats.' 

In the evening, when he was going home, he said to the calf, 
' If you can stand there all day and eat your fill, you may just 
walk home on your own legs, I don't mean to carry you ! ' 

But the Little Peasant was standing by his door waiting for 
the calf, and when the Cowherd came through the village 
without it, he at once asked where it was. 

The Cowherd said, ' It is still standing there ; it would not 
stop eating to come with us.' 


The Little Peasant said, ' But I must have my little calf 

So they went back together to the field, but some one had 
stolen the calf in the meantime, and it was gone. 

The Cowherd said, ' It must have run away.' 

But the Little Peasant said, ' Nothing of the kind,' and he 
took the Cowherd up before the Bailiff, who condemned him, 
for his carelessness, to give the Little Peasant a cow, in place 
of the lost calf. 

So at last the Little Peasant and his Wife had the long- 
wished-for cow ; they were delighted, but they had no fodder 
and could not give it anything to eat, so very soon they had to 
kill it. 

They salted the meat, and the man went to the town to sell 
the hide, intending to buy another calf with the money he got 
for it. On the way he came to a mill, on which a raven sat 
with a broken wing ; he took it up out of pity and wrapped 
it in the hide. Such a storm of wind and rain came on that 
he could go no further, so he went into the mill to ask for 

Only the Miller's Wife was at home, and she said to the 
Little Peasant, ' You may lie down in the straw there.' And 
she gave him some bread and cheese to eat. 

The Little Peasant ate it, and then lay down with the hide 
by his side. 

The Miller's Wife thought, ' He is tired, and won't wake up.' 

Soon after a Priest came in, and he was made very welcome 
by the woman, who said, ' My husband is out, so we can have a 

The Little Peasant was listening, and when he heard about 
the feast he was much annoyed, because bread and cheese had 
been considered good enough for him. 

The Woman then laid the table, and brought out a roast 
joint, salad, cake and wine. They sat down, but just as they 
were beginning to eat, somebody knocked at the door. 

The Woman said, ' Good heavens, that is my Husband ! ' 



She quickly hid the joint in the oven, the wine under the 
pillow, the salad on the bed, and the cake under the bed, and, 
last of all, she hid the Priest in the linen chest. Then she 
opened the door for her Husband, and said, ' Thank heaven 
you are back : the world might be coming to an end with such 
a storm as there is ! ' 

The Miller saw the Little Peasant lying on the straw, and 
said, ' What is that fellow doing there ? ' 

* Oh ! ' said his Wife, ' the poor fellow came in the middle 
of the storm and asked for shelter, so I gave him some bread 
and cheese, and told him he might lie on the straw ! ' 

' He 's welcome as far as I 'm concerned,' said the Man ; 
' but get me something to eat, Wife, I 'm very hungry.' 
His Wife said, ' I have nothing but bread and cheese.' 

* Anything will please me,' said the Man ; ' bread and 
cheese is good enough.' And his eyes falling on the Little 
Peasant, he said, ' Come along and have some too.' 

The Little Peasant did not wait for a second bidding, but 
got up at once, and they fell to. 

The Miller noticed the hid* on the floor in which the Raven 
was wrapped, and said, ' What have you got there ? ' 

' I have a soothsayer there,' answered the Little Peasant. 

* Can he prophesy something to me ? ' asked the Miller. 

* Why not ? ' answered the Little Peasant ; ' but he will 
only say four things, the fifth he keeps to himself.' 

The Miller was inquisitive, and said, ' Let me hear one of 
his prophecies.' 

The Little Peasant squeezed the Raven's head and made 
him croak. 

The Miller asked, ' What did he say ? ' 

The Little Peasant answered, ' First he said that there was 
a bottle of wine under the pillow.' 

4 That 's a bit of luck 1 ' said the Miller, going to the pillow 
and finding the wine. ' What next ? ' 

The Little Peasant made the Raven croak again, and said, 
* Secondly, he says there is a joint in the oven.' 


' That 's a bit of luck 1 ' said the Miller, going to the oven 
and finding the joint. 

The Little Peasant again squeezed the Raven to make him 
prophesy, and said, ' Thirdly, he says there is some salad in the 

' That 's a bit of luck ! ' said the Miller, finding the salad. 

Again the Little Peasant squeezed the Raven to make him 
crook, and said, ' Fourthly, he says there is a cake under the 

' That 's a bit of luck ! ' cried the Miller, as he found the 

Now the two sat down at the table together ; but the 
Miller's \Vife was in terror. She went, to bed, and took all the 
keys with her. 

The Miller would have liked to know what the fifth 
prophecy could be, but the Little Peasant said, ' We will 
quietly eat these four things first, the fifth is something 

So they went on eating, and then they bargained as to how 
much the Miller should pay for the fifth prophecy, and at last 
they agreed upon three hundred thalers. 

Then again the Little Peasant squeezed the Raven's head 
and made him crow very loud. 

The Miller said, ' What does he say ? ' 

The Little Peasant answered, ' He says the devil is hidden 
in the linen chest.' 

The Miller said, ' The devil will have to go out ' ; and he 
opened the house door and made his Wife give up the keys. 
The Little Peasant unlocked the linen chest, and the Priest 
took to his heels as fast as ever he could. 

The Miller said, ' I saw the black fellow with my own eyes ; 
there was no mistake about it.' 

The Little Peasant made off at dawn with his three hundred 

After this the Little Peasant began to get on in the world ; 
he built himself a pretty new house, and the other Peasants 
K 145 


said, 'He must have been where the golden snow falls and 
where one brings home gold in bushels.' 

Then he was summoned before the Bailiff to say where he 
got all his riches. , 

He answered, ' I sold my cow-hide in the town for three 
hundred thalers.' 

When the other Peasants heard this they all wanted to 
enjoy the same good luck, so they ran home, killed their cows, 
and took the hides off to get the same price for them. 

The Bailiff said, ' My maid must have the first chance.' 
When she reached the town the buyer only gave her three thalers 
for the hide ; and he did not even give the others so much, for 
he said, ' What on earth am I to do with all these hides ? ' 

Now the Peasants were enraged at the Little Peasant for 
having stolen a march upon them, and to revenge themselves 
they had him up before the Bailiff and accused him of cheating. 

The innocent Little Peasant was unanimously condemned 
to death ; he was to be put into a cask full of holes and rolled 
into the water. He was led out, and a Priest was brought to 
read a mass ; and all the people had to stand at a distance. 

As soon as the Little Peasant looked at the Priest, he knew 
he was the man who had been at the Miller's. He said to him, 
' I saved you out of the chest, now you must save me out of the 

Just then a Shepherd came by driving a flock of sheep, and 
the Little Peasant knew that he had long wanted to be Bailiff 
himself ; so he called out as loud as he could, ' No, I will not, 
and if all the world wished it I would not.' 

The Shepherd, who heard what he said, came and asked, 
' What 's the matter, what will you not do ? ' 

The Little Peasant said, * They want to make me Bailiff if 
I will sit in this cask, but I won't.' 

' If that is all,' said the Shepherd, ' I will get into the cask 

The Little Peasant said, ' If you will get into the cask you 
shall be made Bailiff.' 


The Shepherd was delighted, and got in, and the Little 
Peasant fastened down the cover upon him. The flock of 
sheep he took for himself, and drove them off. 

Then the Priest went back to the Peasants and told them 
the mass was said ; so they went and rolled the cask into the 

When it began to roll the Shepherd cried out, ' I am quite 
ready to be Bailiff ! ' 

The Peasants thought that it was only the Little Peasant 
crying out, and they said, ' Very likely ; but you must go and 
look about you down below first.' And they rolled the cask 
straight into the water. 

Thereupon they went home, and when they entered the 
village what was their surprise to meet the Little Peasant 
calmly driving a flock of sheep before him, as happy as could 
be. They cried, ' Why, you Little Peasant, how do you come 
here again ? How did you get out of the water ? ' 

' Well,' said the Little Peasant, ' I sank deep, deep down 
till I touched the bottom ; then I knocked the head of the 
cask off, crept out, and found myself in a beautiful meadow 
in which numbers of lambs were feeding, and I brought this 
flock back with me.' 

The other Peasants said, ' Are there any more ? ' 

' Oh yes, plenty,' answered the Little Peasant, ' more than 
we should know what to do with.' 

Then the other Peasants planned to fetch some of these 
sheep for themselves ; they would each have a flock. 

But the Bailiff said, ' I go first.' 

They all ran together to the water ; the sky just then 
was flecked with little fleecy clouds and they were reflected 
in the water. When the Peasants saw them, they cried, 
' Why, there they are 1 We can see the sheep below the 
water I ' 

The Bailiff pressed forward, and said, ' I will be the first 
to go down to look about me ; I will call you if it is worth 
while.' So he sprang into the water with a great splash. 



The others thought he cried, ' Come along ! ' and the 
whole party plunged in after him. 

So all the Peasants perished, and, as the Little Peasant was 
the sole heir, he became a rich man. 


Fred and Kate 

FRED and Kate were man and wife. They had not 
long been married. 

One day Fred said, ' I am going into the fields, 
Kate ; I shall be hungry when I come in, so have something 
good ready for dinner, and a cool draught to quench my thirst.' 

' All right, Fred, I will have it ready for you when you come 

When dinner-time approached, she took down a sausage 
from the chimney, put it into a frying-pan with some butter, 
and placed it on the fire. The sausage began to frizzle and 
splutter, and Kate stood holding the pan lost in her thoughts. 

Suddenly she said : ' While the sausage is cooking, I might 
go down to the cellar to draw the beer.' So she put the pan 
firmly on the fire, and took a jug down to the cellar to draw 
the beer. 

Kate watched the beer running into the jug, and suddenly 
she said : ' I don't believe the dog is tied up ; it might get the 
sausage out of the frying-pan and run off with it.' 

She was up the cellar stairs in a twinkling, but the dog had 
already got the sausage in his jaws, and was just making off 
with it. Kate, who was very agile, ran after him, and chased 
him a good way over the fields. The dog, however, was 
quicker than she, and without letting go the sausage, he got 
right away. 

' What is gone, is gone 1 ' she said, and being tired out, she 
turned back and walked slowly home to cool herself. 

In the meantime, the beer had been running out of the 
cask, because Kate had forgotten to turn the tap. As soon as 



the jug was full, the rest ran all over the cellar floor, till the 
cask was quite empty. 

Kate saw what had happened as soon as she got to the top 
of the cellar stairs. ' Humph ! ' she cried, ' what am I to do 
now, so that Fred shan't discover it ? ' 

She thought a while, and at last she remembered a sack of 
fine meal they had left over from the last fair. She would 

Kate ran after him, and chased him a good way over the fieldi. 

fetch it down and strew it over the beer. ' To be sure,' she 
said, ' those who save at the right time have something when 
they need it.' 

So she went up to the loft and brought the sack down, but, 
unfortunately, she threw it right on to the jug full of beer. 
It was overturned, and away went Fred's drink, flooding the 
cellar with the rest. 

* Oh, that won't matter ! ' said Kate. ' When part is gone, 


the rest may as well follow.' Then she strewed the meal all 
over the cellar. She was delighted with her handiwork when 
it was finished, and said : ' How clean and fresh it looks.' 

At dinner-time Fred came home. ' Well, wife, what have 
you got for dinner ? ' he said. 

' O Fred 1 ' she answered, ' I was frying you a sausage, 
but while I went down to draw the beer, the dog got it ; and 
while I ran after the dog, the beer ran out of the cask. Then 
when I was going to dry up the beer with the meal, I knocked 
the jug over. But never mind, the cellar is quite dry now.' 

Fred said : ' Kate, Kate, what have you been doing ? 
First you let the sausage be carried off, then you let the beer 
run out of the cask, and, lastly, you waste our fine meal.' 

' Well, Fred, I did not know ; you should have told me 
what to do.' 

The man thought : ' If my wife is like this, I must look after 
things myself.' 

Now, he had saved a nice little sum of money, which he 
changed into gold, and said to Kate : ' Do you see these 
yellow counters ? I am going to put them in a pot, and bury 
them underneath the cow's manger in the stable ; don't you 
meddle with them, or it will be the worse for you.' 

And she said : ' Oh no, Fred, I won't.' 

Now, when Fred had gone out, several Pedlars came into 
the village with earthen pots and pans for sale. They asked 
the young wife if she had nothing to give in exchange for 

' Oh, good people,' said Kate, ' I have no money, and I 
can't buy anything, but if some yellow counters would be any 
good to you, I might do some business.' 

' Yellow counters ! Why not ? You might as well show 
them to us,' said the men. 

' You must go into the stable and dig under the cow's 
manger, and you will find the yellow counters. I dare not go 
with you.' 

So the rogues went to the stable and dug up the pot of gold. 



They seized it and made off with it as fast as they could, 
leaving their pots and pans behind. 

Kate thought she must use the new utensils, but as there 
was no lack in the kitchen, she knocked the bottom out of 
every pot and pan, and hung them on the fence round the house 
as ornaments. 

When Fred came home and saw the new decorations, he 
said : ' Kate, whatever have you been doing now ? ' 

' I bought them, Fred, with the yellow counters which 
were hidden in the stable, but I did not get them myself ; the 
Pedlars dug them up.' 

' Alas, wife ! ' said Fred, ' what have you done ? Those 
were not counters, they were pure gold, and all that we 
possess. You should not have done it.' 

' Well, Fred, I did not know ; you should have told me.' 

Kate stood for a while thinking, then she said : ' Listen, 
Fred, we will run after the thieves and get the money back.' 

' Come along then,' said Fred, ' we will try what we can do ; 
but we must take some butter and cheese with us to eat on 
the way.' 

' All right,' she answered. So they set out, but as Fred was 
fleeter of foot than Kate he was soon ahead of her. 

' I shall be the gainer,' she said ; ' I shall be foremost when 
we turn.' 

Soon they came to a mountain, and on both sides of the 
road there were deep cart ruts. ' There, just see,' said Kate, 
' how the poor earth is torn and scratched and squeezed ; it 
can never be whole again as long as it lives.' 

Then out of the kindness of her heart she took the butter 
and smeared the ruts right and left, so that they might not be 
torn by the wheels. 

As she was stooping in this compassionate act, one of the 
cheeses fell out of her pocket, and rolled down the hill. 

Kate said : ' I have come up the hill once, and I don't 
mean to do it again ; I will send anothei of the cheeses to fetch 
it. So she took another out of her pocket and rolled it down. 


As it did not come back she sent a third rolling after it, and 
thought, ' Perhaps they are waiting for company, and don't 
like walking alone.' 

When all three stayed away, she said : ' I don't know what 
is the meaning of this ! it may be that the third one lost its 
way ; I will send the fourth one to call it back.' Nothing was 
seen of the fourth any more than of the third. 

At last Kate got quite angry, and threw down the fifth and 
sixth, and they were the last. 

For a time she stood looking to see if they were coming, 
but as they did not appear, she said : ' Oh, you would be good 
folks to send in search of death, you would be a long time 
coming back. You need not think I am going to wait any 
longer for you ; I am going on, and you may just come after 
me, your legs are younger than mine.' 

So Kate went on, and caught up Fred, who had stopped 
because he wanted something to eat. ' Now give me the food 
you brought with you.' 

She handed him some dry bread. 

' What has become of the butter and cheese ? ' said the man. 

' O Fred ! ' said Kate, ' I smeared the cart ruts with the 
butter, but the cheese will soon be here. One of them slipped 
away from me, and then I sent the others to fetch it back.' 

Then said Fred : ' You should not have wasted the butter, 
Kate, or sent the cheeses rolling down the hill.' 

' Well, Fred, you ought to have told me so,' said Kate. 

So they ate the dry bread together, and Fred said : ' Did 
you lock up the house, Kate, before you came away ? ' 

' No, Fred ; you should have told me sooner.' 

Her husband said : ' Well, then, go home and lock up the 
house before we go any further, and bring something else to 
eat. I will wait for you here.' 

So Kate went, and she thought to herself, ' As Fred wants 
something else to eat, I suppose he does not like bread and 
cheese, I will take him some dried apples and a jug of vinegar 
to drink.' 



Then she bolted the upper half of the door, but she lifted 
the lower part from its hinges, and took it with her on her back, 
thinking that if she had the door in safety the house would be 
safe. She took plenty of time on her way back, for she 
thought : ' Fred will have the more time to rest.' 

When she reached him again, she said : ' Here you have the 
house door, Fred, so you can take care of the house yourself.' 

' Good heavens,' he said, ' what a clever wife I have. She 
bolts the upper part of the door, and lifts the lower part off 
its hinges, so that anything may run in and out. It 's too 
late to go back to the house now ; but as you have brought 
the door so far, you may just carry it further.' 

' I will carry the door, Fred,' she said. ' But the apples 
and the jug of vinegar are too heavy ; I will hang them on the 
door, and it may carry them.' 

They now went into the wood to look for the rogues, but 
they did not find them. As it was dark, they climbed up a 
tree to spend the night there. 

They had hardly settled themselves, before the Pedlars 
came up. They were the sort of people who take away things 
which should not be taken, and who find things before they are 

They lay down just under the tree in which Fred and Kate 
were. They lighted a fire, and began to divide their booty. 

Fred got down at the other side of the tree, and picked up 
a lot of stones with which he meant to kill the thieves. The 
stones did not hit them, however, and the rogues said : ' It will 
soon be day, the wind is blowing down the pine cones.' 

Kate still had the door on her back, and she thought it was 
the dried apples which made it so heavy, so she said : ' Fred, 
I must throw down the apples.' 

' No, Kate, not now,' he answered ; ' they would be- 
tray us.' 

' But, Fred, I must, they are so heavy.' 

' Well, let them go then, in the name of fortune ! ' he cried, 
and down rolled the apples. 


And the Pedlars said : ' The leaves are falling.* 

A little later, rinding that the door still pressed very 

heavily, Kate said : ' Fred, I must pour away the vinegar.' 
' No, Kate, not now ; it would betray us.' 
' But, Fred, I must, it is terribly heavy.' 
' Well, do it, then, if you must, in the name of fortune 1 ' 
So she poured out the vinegar, and the Pedlars were 

sprinkled with it. 

They said to each other : ' Why, the dew is falling already.' 
At last Kate thought : ' Can it be the door that presses so 

heavily ? ' And she said : ' Fred, I must throw the door 


' No, Kate, not now ; it might betray us.' 

' But, Fred, I must ; it weighs me down.' 

' No, Kate, hold it fast.' 

4 Fred, it 's slipping, I must let it fall.' 

' Well, let it fall, then, in the devil's name ! ' 

So down it fell through the branches with such a clatter, 

that the Pedlars cried : ' The devil 's in this tree.' And they 

ran away as fast as ever they could go, leaving all their treasure 

behind them. 

In the early morning, when Fred and Kate climbed down, 

they found all their gold, and took it home with them. 


Sweetheart Roland 

ONCE upon a time there was a woman who was a real 
Witch, and she had two daughters ; one was ugly 
and wicked, but she loved her because she was her 
own daughter. The other was good and lovely, but she hated 
her for she was only her step-daughter. 

Now, this step-daughter had a beautiful apron which the 
other daughter envied, and she said to her Mother that have 
it she must and would. 

' Just wait quietly, my child,' said her Mother. ' You 
shall have it ; your step-sister has long deserved death, and 
to-night, when she is asleep, I will go and chop off her head. 
Only take care to lie on the further side of the bed, against 
the wall, and push her well to this side.' 

Now, all this would certainly have come to pass if the poor 
girl had not been standing in a corner, and heard what they 
said. She was not even allowed to go near the door all day, 
and when bed-time came the Witch's daughter got into bed 
first, so as to lie at the further side ; but when she was asleep 
the other gently changed places with her, and put herself next 
the wall. 

In the middle of the night the Witch crept up holding an 
axe in her right hand, while with her left she felt if there was 
any one there. Then she seized the axe with both hands, 
struck and struck off her own child's head. 

When she had gone away, the Maiden got up, and went to 
the house of her Sweetheart Roland, and knocked at his door. 
When he came out, she said to him, ' Listen, dear Roland ; we 
must quickly fly. My step-mother tried to kill me, but she 
hit her own child instead. When day comes, and she sees 
what she has done, we shall be lost.' 

The Maiileu fetched the magic wand, and then she took her step-sister's head 
and dropped three drops of blood from it. 


' But,' said Roland, ' you must first steal her magic wand, 
or we shall not be able to escape if she comes after us.' 

The Maiden fetched the magic wand, and then she took her 
step-sister's head, and dropped three drops of blood from it 
one by the bed, one in the kitchen, and one on the stairs. 
After that, she hurried away with her Sweetheart Roland. 

When the old Witch got up in the morning she called her 
daughter in order to give her the apron, but she did not come. 
Then she called, ' Where art thou ? ' 

' Here on the stairs,' answered one drop of blood. 

The Witch went on to the stairs, but saw nothing, so she 
called again : ' Where art thou ? ' 

' Here in the kitchen warming myself,' answered the 
second drop of blood. 

The Witch went into the kitchen, but found nothing, then 
she called again : ' Where art thou ? ' 

' Here in bed, sleeping,' answered the third drop of blood. 

So she went into the bedroom, and there she found her own 
child, whose head she had chopped off herself. 

The Witch flew into a violent passion, and sprang out of the 
window. As she could see for many miles around, she soon 
discovered her step-daughter hurrying away with Roland. 

' That won't be any good,' she cried. ' However far you 
may go, you won't escape me.' 

She put on her seven-league boots, and before long she 
overtook them. When the Maiden saw her coming, she 
changed her Sweetheart into a lake, with the magic wand, and 
herself into a Duck swimming in it. The Witch stood on the 
shore, and threw bread-crumbs into the water, and did every- 
thing she could think of to entice the Duck ashore. But it was 
all to no purpose, and she was obliged to go back at night 
without having accomplished her object. 

When she had gone away, the Maiden and Roland resumed 
their own shapes, and they walked the whole night till break 
of day. 

Then the Maiden changed herself into a beautiful Rose in 


the middle of a briar hedge, and Roland into a Fiddler. Before 
long the Witch came striding along, and said to the Fiddler, 
4 Good Fiddler, may I pick this beautiful Rose ? ' 

' By all means,' he said, ' and I will play to you.' 

As she crept into the hedge, in great haste to pick the flower 
(for she knew well who the flower was), Roland began to play, 
and she had to dance, whether she liked or not, for it was a 
magic dance. The quicker he played, the higher she had to 
jump, and the thorns tore her clothes to ribbons, and scratched 
her till she bled. He would not stop a moment, so she had to 
dance till she fell down dead. 

When the Maiden was freed from the spell, Roland said, 
' Now I will go to my father and order the wedding.' 

' Then I will stay here in the meantime,' said the Maiden. 
* And so that no one shall recognise me while I am waiting, I 
will change myself into a common red stone.' 

So Roland went away, and the Maiden stayed in the field, 
as a stone, waiting his return. 

But when Roland got home, he fell into the snares of 
another woman, who made him forget all about his love. 
The poor Maiden waited a long, long time, but when he did 
not come back, she became very sad, and changed herself into 
a flower, and thought, ' Somebody at least will tread upon me.' 

Now it so happened that a Shepherd was watching his sheep 
in the field, and saw the flower, and he picked it because he 
thought it was so pretty. He took it home and put it care- 
fully away in a chest. From that time forward a wonderful 
change took place in the Shepherd's hut. When he got up in 
the morning, all the work was done ; the tables and benches 
were dusted, the fire was lighted, and the water was carried 
in. At dinner-time, when he came home, the table was laid, 
and a well-cooked meal stood ready. He could not imagine 
how it all came about, for he never saw a creature in his house, 
and nobody could be hidden in the tiny hut. He was much 
pleased at being so well served, but at last he got rather 
frightened, and went to a Wise Woman to ask her advice. 



The Wise Woman said, ' There is magic behind it. You must 
look carefully about the room, early in the morning, and 
whatever you see, throw a white cloth over it, and the spell 
will be broken.' 

The Shepherd did what she told him, and next morning, 
just as the day broke, he saw his chest open, and the flower 
come out. So he sprang up quickly, and threw a white cloth 
over it. Immediately the spell was broken, and a lovely 
Maiden stood before him, who confessed that she had been the 
flower, and it was she who had done all the work of his hut. 
She also told him her story, and he was so pleased with her 
that he asked her to marry him. 

But she answered, ' No ; I want my Sweetheart Roland, 
and though he has forsaken me, I will always be true to him.' 

She promised not to go away, however, but to go on with 
the housekeeping for the present. 

Now the time came for Roland's marriage to be celebrated. 
According to old custom, a proclamation was made that every 
maiden in the land should present herself to sing at the marriage 
in honour of the bridal pair. 

When the faithful Maiden heard this, she grew very sad, 
so sad that she thought her heart would break. She had no 
wish to go to the marriage, but the others came and fetched 
her. But each time as her turn came to sing, she slipped 
behind the others till she was the only one left, and she could 
not help herself. 

As soon as she began to sing, and her voice reached 
Roland's ears, he sprang up and cried, ' That is the true Bride, 
and I will have no other.' 

Everything that he had forgotten came back, and his 
heart was filled with joy. So the faithful Maiden was married 
to her Sweetheart Roland ; all her grief and pain were over, 
and only happiness lay before her. 

Printed in Great Britain by 

T. and A. CONSTABLE, Printers to His Majesty 
at the University Press, Edinburgh