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My Book of Favorite Fairy Tales
by Edric Vredenburg
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MY BOOK

OF

FAVOURITE FAIRY TALES

ILLUSTRATED BY JENNIE HARBOUR.



MY BOOK OF

FAVOURITE FAIRY TALES

RETOLD BY THE EDITOR

& OTHERS



ILLUSTRATED BY JENNIE HARBOUR

EDITED BY CAPT. EDRIC VREDENBURG

RAPHAEL TUCK &. SONS. LTP

Publishers in Their Majesties the King & Queen

LONDON & PARIS

DESIGNED & PRINTED IN GREAT BRITAIN

PHILADELPHIA

DAVID MCKAY COMPANY

WASHINGTON SQUARE



CONTENTS

THE OLD, OLD STORIES

THE GOOSE GIRL

LITTLE SNOW-WHITE

CINDERELLA

PRINCESS GOLDENHAIR

LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD

THE WHITE FAWN

HANSEL AND GRETHEL

SNOW-WHITE AND ROSE-RED

THE SLEEPING BEAUTY

PRINCE CHERI

THE WHITE CAT

BLUEBEARD

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST

TUFTY RIQUET

THUMBLING



LIST OF COLOUR PLATES

THE GOOSE GIRL Frontispiece

THE MAGIC MIRROR

CINDERELLA

LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD

THE WHITE FAWN

HANSEL AND GRETHEL

SNOW-WHITE AND ROSE-RED

THE SLEEPING BEAUTY

ZELIE AND THE FAIRY CANDIDE

BLUEBEARD

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST

THE BEAUTIFUL PRINCESS



THE OLD, OLD STORIES

Here they are again, the old, old stories, the very best; dear Cinderella, wicked old Bluebeard, tiny Thumbling, beautiful Beauty and the ugly Beast, and a host of others. But the old stories, I may tell you, are always new, and always must be so, because there are new children to read them every day, and to these, of course, these old tales might have been written yesterday.

But the stories in this book are new in another way. Look how they are clothed, look at their beautiful setting, the wonderful pictures! Have you ever seen such charming princes and lovely princesses, such dainty grace and delicate feeling?

What would our grandfathers and grandmothers have said of such a book! They would have thought there was magic in the brush and pencil.

Surely we are favoured in this generation when we see before us, the old, old fairy tales, which are ever new, dressed in such a beautiful and splendid fashion!

EDRIC VREDENBURG.



THE GOOSE GIRL

An old queen, whose husband had been dead some years, had a beautiful daughter. When she grew up, she was betrothed to a prince who lived a great way off; and as the time drew near for her to be married, she got ready to set off on her journey to his country. Then the queen, her mother, packed up a great many costly things—jewels, and gold, and silver; trinkets, fine dresses, and, in short, everything that became a royal bride; for she loved her child very dearly: and she gave her a waiting-maid to ride with her, and give her into the bridegroom's hands; and each had a horse for the journey. Now the princess's horse was called Falada, and could speak.

When the time came for them to set out, the old queen went into her bed-chamber, and took a little knife, and cut off a lock of her hair, and gave it to her daughter, and said, "Take care of it, dear child; for it is a charm that may be of use to you on the road." Then they took a sorrowful leave of each other, and the princess put the lock of her mother's hair into her bosom, got upon her horse, and set off on her journey to her bridegroom's kingdom. One day, as they were riding along by the side of a brook, the princess began to feel very thirsty, and said to her maid, "Pray get down and fetch me some water, in my golden cup, out of yonder brook, for I want to drink." "Nay," said the maid, "if you are thirsty, get down yourself, and lie down by the water and drink; I shall not be your waiting-maid any longer." Then the princess was so thirsty that she got down, and knelt over the brook and drank, for she was frightened, and dared not bring out her golden cup; and then she wept, and said "Alas! what will become of me?" And the lock of hair answered her, and said—

"Alas! alas! if thy mother knew it, Sadly, sadly her heart would rue it."

But the princess was very humble and meek, so she said nothing to her maid's ill behaviour, but got upon her horse again.

Then all rode further on their journey, till the day grew so warm, and the sun so scorching, that the bride began to feel very thirsty again; and at last, when they came to a river, she forgot her maid's rude speech, and said, "Pray get down and fetch me some water to drink in my golden cup." But the maid answered her, and even spoke more haughtily than before, "Drink, if you will, but I shall not be your waiting-maid." Then the princess was so thirsty that she got off her horse and lay down, and held her head over the running stream, and cried, and said, "What will become of me?" And the lock of hair answered her again—

"Alas! alas! if thy mother knew it, Sadly, sadly her heart would rue it."

And as she leaned down to drink, the lock of hair fell from her bosom and floated away with the water, without her seeing it, she was so frightened. But her maid saw it, and was very glad, for she knew the charm, and saw that the poor bride would be in her power now that she had lost the hair. So when the bride had drunk, and would have got upon Falada again, the maid said, "I shall ride upon Falada and you may have my horse instead;" so she was forced to give up her horse, and soon afterwards to take off her royal clothes, and put on her maid's shabby ones.

At last, as they drew near the end of the journey, this treacherous servant threatened to kill her mistress if she ever told anyone what had happened. But Falada saw it all, and marked it well. Then the waiting-maid got upon Falada, and the real bride was set upon the other horse, and they went on in this way till at last they came to the royal court. There was great joy at their coming, the prince hurried to meet them, and lifted the maid from her horse, thinking she was the one who was to be his wife; and she was led upstairs to the royal chamber, but the true princess was told to stay in the court below.



But the old king happened to be looking out of the window, and saw her in the yard below; and as she looked very pretty, and too delicate for a waiting-maid, he went into the royal chamber to ask the bride who it was she had brought with her, that was thus left standing in the court below. "I brought her with me for the sake of her company on the road," said she. "Pray give the girl some work to do, that she may not be idle." The old king could not for some time think of any work for her to do, but at last he said, "I have a lad who takes care of my geese; she may go and help him." Now the name of this lad, that the real bride was to help in watching the king's geese, was Curdken.

Soon after, the false bride said to the prince, "Dear husband pray do me one piece of kindness." "That I will," said the prince. "Then tell one of your slaughterers to cut off the head of the horse I rode upon, for it was very unruly, and plagued me sadly on the road." But the truth was, she was very much afraid lest Falada should speak, and tell all she had done to the princess. She carried her point, and the faithful Falada was killed; but when the true princess heard of it she wept, and begged the man to nail up Falada's head against a large dark gate in the city through which she had to pass every morning and evening, that there she might still see him sometimes. Then the slaughterer said he would do as she wished; cut off the head, and nailed it fast under the dark gate.

Early the next morning, as she and Curdken went out through the gate, she said sorrowfully—

"Falada, Falada, there thou art hanging!"

and the head answered—

"Bride, bride, there thou art ganging! Alas! alas! if thy mother knew it, Sadly, sadly her heart would rue it."

Then they went out of the city, and drove the geese in. And when she came to the meadow, she sat down upon a bank here, and let down her waving locks of hair, which were all of pure gold; and when Curdken saw it glitter in the sun, he ran up, and would have pulled some of the locks out; but she cried—

"Blow, breezes, blow! Let Curdken's hat go! Blow, breezes, blow! Let him after it go! O'er hills, dales, and rocks. Away be it whirl'd, Till the golden locks Are all comb'd and curl'd!"



Then there came a wind, so strong that it blew off Curdken's hat, and away it flew over the hills, and he after it; till, by the time he came back, she had done combing and curling her hair, and put it up again safe. Then he was very angry and sulky, and would not speak to her at all; but they watched the geese until it grew dark in the evening, and then drove them homewards.

The next morning, as they were going through the dark gate, the poor girl looked up at Falada's head, and cried—

"Falada, Falada, there thou art hanging!"

and it answered—

"Bride, bride, there thou art ganging! Alas! alas! if thy mother knew it, Sadly, sadly her heart would rue it."

Then she drove on the geese and sat down again in the meadow, and began to comb out her hair as before, and Curdken ran up to her, and wanted to take hold of it; but she cried out quickly—

"Blow, breezes, blow! Let Curdken's hat go, Blow, breezes, blow! Let him after it go! O'er hills, dales, and rocks, Away be it whirl'd, Till the golden locks Are all comb'd and curl'd!"

Then the wind came and blew his hat, and off it flew a great way, over the hills and far away, so that he had to run after it; and when he came back, she had done up her hair again, and all was safe. So they watched the geese till it grew dark.

In the evening, after they came home, Curdken went to the old king, and said, "I cannot have that strange girl to help me to keep the geese any longer."

"Why?" said the king.

"Because she does nothing but tease me all day long."

Then the king made him tell all that had passed.

And Curdken said, "When we go in the morning through the dark gate with our flock of geese, she weeps, and talks with the head of a horse that hangs upon the wall, and says—

"'Falada, Falada, there thou art hanging!'"

and the head answers—

"'Bride, bride, there thou art ganging! Alas! alas! if thy mother knew it, Sadly, sadly her heart would rue it.'"

And Curdken went on telling the king what had happened upon the meadow where the geese fed; and how his hat was blown away, and he was forced to run after it, and leave his flock. But the old king told him to go out again as usual the next day, and when morning came, the king placed himself behind the gate, and heard how she spoke to Falada, and how Falada answered; and then he went into the field and hid himself in a bush by the meadow's side, and soon saw with his own eyes how they drove the flock of geese, and how, after a little time, she let down her hair that glittered in the sun; and then he heard her say—

"Blow, breezes, blow! Let Curdken's hat go! Blow, breezes, blow! Let him after it go! O'er hills, dales, and rocks, Away be it whirl'd, Till the golden locks, Are all comb'd and curl'd!"



And soon came a gale of wind, and carried away Curdken's hat, while the girl went on combing and curling her hair.

All this the old king saw: so he went home without being seen; and when the little goose girl came back in the evening, he called her aside, and asked her why she did so: but she burst into tears, and said, "That I must not tell you or any man, or I shall lose my life."

But the old king begged so hard that she had no peace till she had told him all, word for word: and it was very lucky for her that she did so, for the king ordered royal clothes to be put upon her, and gazed on her with wonder, she was so beautiful.

Then he called his son, and told him that he had only the false bride, for that she was merely a waiting-maid, while the true one stood by.

And the young king rejoiced when he saw her beauty, and heard how meek and patient she had been; and without saying anything, ordered a great feast to be got ready for all his court.

The bridegroom sat at the top, with the false princess on one side, and the true one on the other; but nobody knew her, for she was quite dazzling to their eyes, and was not at all like the little goose-girl, now that she had her brilliant dress.

When they had eaten and drunk, and were very merry, the old king told all the story, as one that he had once heard of, and asked the true waiting-maid what she thought ought to be done to anyone who would behave thus.

"Nothing better," said this false bride, "than that she should be thrown into a cask stuck round with sharp nails, and that two white horses should be put to it, and should drag it from street to street till she is dead."

"Thou art she!" said the old king; "and since thou hast judged thyself, it shall be so done to thee."

And the young king was married to his true wife, and they reigned over the kingdom in peace and happiness all their lives.



LITTLE SNOW-WHITE

It was in the middle of winter, when the broad flakes of snow were falling around, that a certain queen sat working at the window, the frame of which was made of fine black ebony; and as she was looking out upon the snow, she pricked her finger, and three drops of blood fell upon it. Then she gazed thoughtfully upon the red drops which sprinkled the white snow, and said, "Would that my little daughter may be as white as that snow, as red as the blood, and as black as the ebony window-frame!" And so the little girl grew up: her skin was as white as snow, her cheeks as rosy as blood, and her hair as black as ebony; and she was called Snow-White.

But this queen died; and the king soon married another wife, who was very beautiful, but so proud that she could not bear to think that any one could surpass her. She had a magical looking-glass, to which she used to go and gaze upon herself in it, and say,

"Tell me, glass, tell me true! Of all the ladies in the land. Who is fairest? Tell me who?"

And the glass answered, "Thou, Queen, art fairest in the land."

But Snow-White grew more and more beautiful; and when she was seven years old, she was as bright as the day, and fairer than the queen herself. Then the glass one day answered the queen, when she went to consult it as usual:

"Thou, Queen, may'st fair and beauteous be, But Snow-White is lovelier far than thee!"

When she heard this she turned pale with rage and envy; and calling to one of her servants said, "Take Snow-White away into the wide wood, that I may never see her more." Then the servant led her away; but his heart melted when she begged him to spare her life, and he said, "I will not hurt thee, thou pretty child." So he left her by herself, and though he thought it most likely that the wild beasts would tear her to pieces, he felt as if a great weight were taken off his heart when he had made up his mind not to kill her, but leave her to her fate.



Then poor Snow-White wandered along through the wood in great fear; and the wild beasts roared about her, but none did her any harm. In the evening she came to a little cottage, and went in there to rest herself, for her weary feet would carry her no further. Everything was spruce and neat in the cottage: on the table was spread a white cloth, and there were seven little plates with seven little loaves and seven little glasses with wine in them; and knives and forks laid in order, and by the wall stood seven little beds. Then, as she was very hungry, she picked a little piece off each loaf, and drank a very little wine out of each glass; and after that she thought she would lie down and rest. So she tried all the little beds; and one was too long, and another was too short, till at last the seventh suited her; and there she laid herself down and went to sleep. Presently in came the masters of the cottage, who were seven little dwarfs that lived among the mountains, and dug and searched about for gold. They lighted up their seven lamps, and saw directly that all was not right. The first said, "Who has been sitting on my stool?" The second, "Who has been eating off my plate?" The third, "Who has been picking at my bread?" the fourth, "Who has been meddling with my spoon?" The fifth, "Who has been handling my fork?" The sixth, "Who has been cutting with my knife?" The seventh, "Who has been drinking my wine?" Then the first looked round and said. "Who has been lying on my bed?" And the rest came running to him, and every one cried out that somebody had been upon his bed. But the seventh saw Snow-White, and called upon his brethren to come and see her; and they cried out with wonder and astonishment, and brought their lamps to look at her, and said, "Good heavens! What a lovely child she is!" and they were delighted to see her, and took care not to waken her; and the seventh dwarf slept an hour with each of the other dwarfs in turn, till the night was gone.



In the morning Snow-White told them all her story; and they pitied her, and said if she would keep all things in order, and cook and wash, and knit and spin for them, she might stay where she was, and they would take good care of her. Then they went out all day long to their work, seeking for gold and silver in the mountains; and Snow-White remained at home: and they warned her, and said, "The queen will soon find out where you are, so take care and let no one in." But the queen, now that she thought Snow-White was dead, believed that she was certainly the handsomest lady in the land; and she went to her glass, and the glass answered,

"Thou, Queen, thou art fairest in all this land; But over the hills, in the greenwood shade. Where the seven dwarfs their dwelling have made. There Snow-White is hiding her head; and she Is lovelier far, O Queen, than thee."

Then the queen was very much alarmed; for she knew that the glass always spoke the truth, and was sure that the servant had betrayed her. And she could not bear to think that anyone lived who was more beautiful than she was; so she disguised herself as a pedlar and went her way over the hills to the place where the dwarfs dwelt. Then she knocked at the door, and cried, "Fine wares to sell!" Snow-White looked out of the window, and cried, "Good-day, good woman; what have you to sell?" "Good wares, fine wares," said she; "laces and bobbins of all colours." "I will let the old lady in; she seems to be a very good sort of a body," thought Snow-White; so she ran down, and unbolted the door. "Bless me!" said the woman, "how badly your stays are laced. Let me lace them up with one of my nice new laces." Snow-White did not dream of any mischief; so she stood up before the old woman; but she set to work so nimbly, and pulled the lace so tight, that Snow-White lost her breath, and fell down as if she were dead. "There's an end of all thy beauty," said the spiteful queen, and went away home.



In the evening the seven dwarfs returned; and I need not say how grieved they were to see their faithful Snow-White stretched upon the ground motionless, as if she were quite dead. However, they lifted her up, and when they found what was the matter, they cut the lace; and in a little time she began to breathe, and soon came to life again. Then they said, "The old woman was the queen herself; take care another time, and let no one in when we are away."

When the queen got home, she went to her glass, and spoke to it, but to her surprise it said the same words as before.

Then the blood ran cold in her heart with spite and malice to see that Snow-White still lived; and she dressed herself up again in a disguise, but very different from the one she wore before, and took with her a poisoned comb, When she reached the dwarf's cottage, she knocked at the door, and cried, "Fine wares to sell!" but Snow-White said, "I dare not let anyone in." Then the queen begged, "Only look at my beautiful combs;" and gave her the poisoned one. And it looked so pretty that she took it up and put it into her hair to try it; but the moment it touched her head the poison was so powerful that she fell down senseless.

"There you may lie," said the queen, and went her way. But by good luck the dwarfs returned very early that evening; and when they saw Snow-White lying on the ground, they thought what had happened, and soon found the poisoned comb. And when they took it away, she recovered, and told them all that had passed; and they warned her once more not to open the door to anyone.



Meantime the queen went home to her glass, and trembled with rage when she received exactly the same answer as before; and she said "Snow-White shall die, if it costs me my life." So she went secretly into a chamber, and prepared a poisoned apple; the outside looked very rosy and tempting, but whosoever tasted it was sure to die. Then she dressed herself up as a peasant's wife, and travelled over the hills to the dwarfs' cottage, and knocked at the door; but Snow-White put her head out of the window, and said, "I dare not let anyone in, for the dwarfs have told me not to." "Do as you please," said the old woman, "but at any rate take this pretty apple; I will make you a present of it." "No," said Snow-White, "I dare not take it." "You silly girl!" answered the other, "what are you afraid of? Do you think it is poisoned? Come! do you eat one part, and I will eat the other." Now the apple was so prepared that one side was good, though the other side was poisoned. Then Snow-White was very much tempted to taste, for the apple looked exceedingly nice; and when she saw the old woman eat, she could refrain no longer. But she had scarcely put the piece into her mouth, when she fell down dead upon the ground. "This time nothing will save thee," said the queen; and she went home to her glass, and at last it said,

"Thou, Queen, art the fairest of all the fair."

And then her envious heart was glad, and as happy as such a heart could be.

When evening came, and the dwarfs returned home, they found Snow-White lying on the ground; no breath passed her lips, and they were afraid that she was quite dead. They lifted her up, and combed her hair, and washed her face with wine and water; but all was in vain, for the little girl seemed quite dead. So they laid her down upon a bier, and all seven watched and bewailed her three whole days; and then they proposed to bury her; but her cheeks were still rosy, and her face looked just as it did while she was alive; so they said, "We will never bury her in the cold ground." And they made a coffin of glass so that they might still look at her, and wrote her name upon it in golden letters, and that she was a king's daughter. And the coffin was placed upon the hill, and one of the dwarfs always sat by it and watched. And the birds of the air came too, and bemoaned Snow-White. First of all came an owl, and then a raven, but at last came a dove.

And thus Snow-White lay for a long, long time, and still only looked as though she were asleep; for she was even now as white as snow, and as red as blood, and as black as ebony. At last a prince came and called at the dwarfs' house; and he saw Snow-White, and read what was written in gold letters. Then he offered the dwarfs money, and earnestly prayed them to let him take her away; but they said, "We will not part with her for all the gold in the world." At last, however, they had pity on him, and gave him the coffin; but the moment he lifted it up to carry it home with him, the piece of apple fell from between her lips, and Snow-White awoke, and said, "Where am I?" And the prince answered, "Thou art safe with me." Then he told her all that had happened, and said, "I love you better than all the world; come with me to my father's palace, and you shall be my wife." And Snow-White consented, and went home with the prince; and everything was prepared with great pomp and splendour for their wedding.

To the feast was invited, among the rest, Snow-White's old enemy, the queen; and as she was dressing herself in fine, rich clothes, she looked, in the glass, and the glass answered,

"Thou, lady, art the loveliest here, I ween; But lovelier far is the new-made queen."

When she heard this, she started with rage; but her envy and curiosity were so great, that she could not help setting out to see the bride. And when she arrived, and saw that it was none other than Snow-White, who she thought had been dead a long while, she choked with passion, and fell ill and died; but Snow-White and the prince lived and reigned happily over that land many, many years.



CINDERELLA

The wife of a rich man fell sick: and when she felt that her end drew nigh, she called her only daughter to her bedside, and said, "Always be a good girl, and I will look down from heaven and watch over you." Soon afterwards she shut her eyes and died, and was buried in the garden; and the little girl went every day to her grave and wept, and was always good and kind to all about her. And the snow spread a beautiful white covering over the grave: but by the time the sun had melted it away again, her father had married another wife. This new wife had two daughters of her own, that she brought home with her: they were fair in face but foul at heart, and it was now a sorry time for the poor little girl. "What does the good-for-nothing thing want in the parlour?" said they; "they who would eat bread should first earn it; away with the kitchen maid!" Then they took away her fine clothes, and gave her an old frock to put on, and laughed at her and turned her into the kitchen.

Then she was forced to do hard work; to rise early, before daylight, to bring the water, to make the fire, to cook and to wash. Besides that, the sisters plagued her in all sorts of ways and laughed at her. In the evening, when she was tired, she had no bed to lie down on, but was made to sleep by the hearth among the ashes; and then, as she was of course always dusty and dirty, they called her Cinderella.

It happened once that the father was going to the fair, and asked his wife's daughters what he should bring them. "Fine clothes," said the first: "Pearls and diamonds," said the second. "Now, child," said he to his own daughter, "what will you have?" "The first sprig, dear father, that rubs against your hat on your way home," said she. Then he bought for the two first the fine clothes and pearls and diamonds they had asked for: and on his way home as he rode through a green copse, a sprig of hazel brushed against him, and almost pushed off his hat; so he broke it off and brought it away; and when he got home he gave it to his daughter. Then she took it and went to her mother's grave and planted it there, and cried so much that it was watered with her tears; and there it grew and became a fine tree. Three times every day she went to it and wept; and soon a little bird came and built its nest upon the tree, and talked with her and watched over her, and brought her whatever she wished for.

Now it happened that the king of the land held a feast which was to last three days, and out of those who came to it his son was to choose a bride for himself; and Cinderella's two sisters were asked to come. So they called her up and said, "Now, comb our hair, brush our shoes, and tie our sashes for us, for we are going to dance at the king's feast." Then she did as she was told, but when all was done she could not help crying, for she thought to herself, she would have liked to go to the dance too; and at last she begged her mother very hard to let her go. "You! Cinderella?" said she; "you who have nothing to wear, no clothes at all, and who cannot even dance—you want to go to the ball?" And when she kept on begging—to get rid of her, she said at last, "I will throw this basinful of peas into the ash heap, and if you have picked them all out in two hours' time you shall go to the feast too." Then she threw the peas into the ashes; but the little maiden ran out at the back door into the garden, and cried out—

"Hither, hither, through the sky. Turtle-doves and linnets, fly! Blackbird, thrush, and chaffinch gay, Hither, hither, haste away! One and all, come help me quick, Haste ye, haste ye—pick, pick, pick!"



Then first came two white doves flying in at the kitchen window; and next came two turtle-doves; and after them all the little birds under heaven came chirping and fluttering in, and flew down into the ashes; and the little doves stooped their heads down and set to work, pick, pick, pick; and then the others began to pick, pick, pick; and picked out all the good grain and put it in a dish, and left the ashes. At the end of one hour the work was done, and all flew out again at the windows. Then Cinderella brought the dish to her mother, overjoyed at the thought that now she should go to the feast. But she said, "No, no! Girl, you have no clothes and cannot dance, you shall not go." And when Cinderella begged very hard to go, she said, "If you can in one hour's time pick two of these dishes of peas out of the ashes, you shall go too." And thus she thought she should at last get rid of her. So she shook two dishes of peas into the ashes; but the little maiden went out into the garden at the back of the house, and cried as before—

"Hither, hither, through the sky. Turtle-doves and linnets, fly! Blackbird, thrush, and chaffinch gay, Hither, hither, haste away! One and all, come help me quick, Haste ye, haste ye—pick, pick, pick!"

Then first came two white doves in at the kitchen window; and next came the turtle-doves; and after them all the little birds under heaven came chirping and hopping about, and flew down about the ashes; and the little doves put their heads down and set to work, pick, pick, pick; and then the others began to pick, pick, pick; and they put all the good grain into the dishes, and left all the ashes, Before half-an-hour's time all was done, and out they flew again. And then Cinderella took the dishes to her mother, rejoicing to think that she should now go to the ball. But her mother said, "It is all of no use, you cannot go, you have no clothes, and cannot dance, and you would only put us to shame:" and off she went with her two daughters to the feast.

Now when all were gone, and nobody left at home, Cinderella went sorrowfully and sat down under the hazel-tree, and cried out—

"Shake, shake, hazel tree, Gold and silver over me!"

Then her friend the bird flew out of the tree and brought a gold and silver dress for her, and slippers of spangled silk; and she put them on, and followed her sisters to the feast. But they did not know her, and thought it must be some strange princess, she looked so fine and beautiful in her rich clothes; and they never once thought of Cinderella, but took for granted that she was safe at home in the dirt.



The king's son soon came up to her, and took her by the hand and danced with her and no one else; and he never left her hand; but when any one else came to ask her to dance, he said, "This lady is dancing with me." Thus they danced till a late hour of the night, and then she wanted to go home: and the king's son said, "I shall go and take care of you to your home;" for he wanted to see where the beautiful maid lived. But she slipped away from him unawares, and ran off towards home, and the prince followed her; but she jumped up into the pigeon-house and shut the door. Then he waited till her father came home, and told him that the unknown maiden who had been at the feast had hidden herself in the pigeon-house. But when they had broken open the door they found no one within; and as they came back into the house, Cinderella lay as she always did, in her dirty frock by the ashes, and her dim little lamp burnt in the chimney; for she had run as quickly as she could through the pigeon-house and on to the hazel-tree, and had there taken off her beautiful clothes, and laid them beneath the tree, that the bird might carry them away, and had seated herself amid the ashes again in her little old frock.

The next day, when the feast was again held, and her father, mother, and sisters were gone, Cinderella went to the hazel tree, and said—

"Shake, shake, hazel tree, Gold and silver over me!"

And the bird came and brought a still finer dress than the one she had worn the day before. And when she came in it to the ball, every one wondered at her beauty; but the king's son, who was waiting for her, took her by the hand, and danced with her; and when any one asked her to dance, he said as before, "This lady is dancing with me." When night came she wanted to go home; and the king's son followed her as before, that he might see into what house she went; but she sprang away from him, all at once, into the garden behind her father's house. In this garden stood a fine large pear tree full of ripe fruit; and Cinderella, not knowing where to hide herself, jumped up into it without being seen. Then the king's son could not find out where she was gone, but waited till her father came home, and said to him, "The unknown lady who danced with me has slipped away, and I think she must have sprung into the pear tree." The father thought to himself, "Can it be Cinderella?" So he ordered an axe to be brought; and they cut down the tree, but found no one upon it. And when they came back into the kitchen, there lay Cinderella in the ashes as usual; for she had slipped down on the other side of the tree, and carried her beautiful clothes back to the bird at the hazel tree, and then put on her little old frock.

The third day, when her father and mother and sisters were gone she went again into the garden, and said—-

"Shake, shake, hazel tree, Gold and silver over me!"

Then her kind friend the bird brought a dress still finer than the former ones, and slippers which were all of gold; so that when she came to the feast no one knew what to say for wonder at her beauty; and the king's son danced with her alone; and when any one else asked her to dance he said, "This lady is my partner." Now when night came she wanted to go home; and the king's son would go with her, and said to himself, "I will not lose her this time;" but, however, she managed to slip away from him, though in such a hurry that she dropped her left golden slipper upon the stairs.



So the prince took the shoe, and went the next day to the king his father, and said, "I will take for my wife the lady that this golden shoe fits." Then both the sisters were overjoyed to hear this; for they had beautiful feet, and had no doubt that they could wear the golden slipper. The eldest went first into the room where the slipper was, and wanted to try it on, and the mother stood by. But her great toe could not go into it, and the shoe was altogether much too small for her. Then the mother gave her a knife, and said, "Never mind, cut it off; when you are queen you will not care about toes, you will not want to go on foot." So the silly girl cut her great toe off, and squeezed the shoe on, and went to the king's son. Then he took her for his bride, and set her beside him on his horse and rode away with her. But on their way home they had to pass by the hazel tree that Cinderella had planted and there sat a little dove on the branch singing—-

"Back again! back again! look to the shoe! The shoe is too small, and not made for you! Prince! prince! look again for thy bride, For she's not the true one that sits by thy side."

Then the prince got down and looked at her foot, and saw by the blood that streamed from it what a trick she had played him. So he turned his horse round and brought the false bride back to her home, and said, "This is not the right bride; let the other sister try and put on the slipper." Then she went into the room and got her foot into the shoe, all but the heel, which was too large. But her mother squeezed it in till the blood came, and took her to the king's son; and he set her as his bride beside him on his horse, and rode away with her. But when they came to the hazel tree the little dove sat there still, and sang—

"Back again! back again! look to the shoe! The shoe is too small, and not made for you! Prince! prince! look again for thy bride, For she's not the true one that sits by thy side."



Then he looked down and saw that the blood streamed so from the shoe that her white stockings were quite red. So he turned his horse and brought her back again also. "This is not the true bride," said he to the father; "have you no other daughters?" "No," said he; "there is only a little dirty Cinderella here, the child of my first wife; I am sure she cannot be the bride." However, the prince told him to send her. But the mother said, "No, no, she is much too dirty, she will not dare to show herself;" still the prince would have her come. And she first washed her face and hands, and then went in and curtsied to him, and he handed to her the golden slipper.

Then she took her clumsy shoe off her left foot and put on the golden slipper; and it fitted her as if it had been made for her. And when the Prince drew near and looked at her face he knew her, and said, "This is the right bride."

But the mother and both the sisters were frightened and turned pale with anger as he took Cinderella on his horse, and rode away with her. And when they came to the hazel tree, the white dove sang—

"Home! home! look at the shoe! Princess! the shoe was made for you! Prince! prince! take home thy bride. For she is the true one that sits by thy side!"

And when the dove had done its song, it came flying and perched upon her shoulder, and so went home with her.



PRINCESS GOLDENHAIR

There was once a King's daughter who was the most beautiful thing in the world, and as her hair was fair and reached to her feet she was called the Princess Goldenhair.

A handsome young King in the neighbourhood, although he had never seen this Princess, fell so deeply in love with her from what he had heard, that he could neither eat nor sleep.

So an ambassador was sent with a magnificent chariot, more than a hundred horses, and fifty pages, to bring the Princess to the King, and great preparations were made for her reception.



But whether the Princess Goldenhair was in an ill humour when the ambassador arrived at her Court, or whatever was the reason, certain it is that she sent a message to the young King thanking him but saying that she did not wish to marry.

When the King heard of her refusal he wept like a child.

Now at his Court there was a young man called Avenant. He was as beautiful as the sun, and a more finely made fellow than any in the kingdom; everybody loved him except a few envious people, who were angry because the King favoured and confided in him, and in the presence of these, one day, Avenant incautiously remarked,

"If the King had sent me to fetch the Princess Goldenhair, I am certain she would have come," and these words were repeated to the King in such a manner that they made him very angry, and he ordered Avenant to be shut up in a high tower, to die of hunger.

In this sad plight, Avenant exclaimed one day, "How have I offended his Majesty? He has no more faithful subject than I."

The King who happened to be passing by the tower, heard this; he called for Avenant to be brought forth who, throwing himself on his knees, begged to know in what way he had offended his royal master.

"You mocked me," said the King, "you said that you would have succeeded with the Princess Goldenhair where I have failed."

"It is true, sir," replied Avenant, "I did say so, for I would have represented your noble qualities in such a way, that she could not help being persuaded."

The King was convinced of the young man's sincerity, and with a letter of introduction, Avenant set out for the Court of the goldenhaired beauty, riding alone, according to his wish, and thinking as he went how he best could woo the Princess for his beloved master.

One day, alighting from his horse to write down some suitable words that had come into his mind, he saw a golden carp who, leaping from the water to catch flies, had thrown herself upon the river bank, and was now nearly dead.

Avenant pitied the poor thing, and put her carefully back into the water. Recovering directly, the carp dived to the bottom, but returning to the edge of the river, said,

"Avenant, I thank you; you have saved my life, I will repay you;" then she swam off leaving the young man in great astonishment.

Another day as Avenant journeyed he noticed a raven who was pursued by an eagle. "What right has that eagle to persecute the raven? thought Avenant, and he drew his bow and shot the fierce bird. The raven perched on a bough and cried.

"Avenant you have saved my life, I will not be ungrateful, I will repay you."



Not long after this, Avenant found an owl caught in a snare, he cut the strings, and freed the trembling captive. "Avenant," said the owl, "you have saved my life, I will repay you."

These three adventures were the most important that befell Avenant, and he went on his way, shortly before he arrived at his destination purchasing a beautiful little dog named Cabriole.

When Avenant reached the Palace of the Princess Goldenhair, and saw the Princess seated upon her throne, she looked so lovely that at first all his fine speeches forsook him, and he could not utter a word; however, taking courage, he addressed her in exquisitely chosen language, begging her to become the King's bride.

To this the Princess replied most graciously, saying that his petition moved her more than any other could do, "but know," she added, "as I was walking by the river a month ago, as I took off my glove, a ring, that I greatly value, fell into the water, and I have vowed that I will not heed any proposal of marriage, except from the ambassador who brings me back my ring."

Sad at heart Avenant left the Palace, but his little dog, Cabriole, said, "My dear master, do not despair, you are too good to be unhappy. Early to-morrow morning let us go to the river-side." Avenant patted him, but did not answer, and, still sad, fell asleep.

As soon as it was day, Cabriole awoke him saying, "Dress yourself, my master, and come out."

They wandered down to the river, and there Avenant heard a voice calling him, and what should he see but the golden carp, with the Princess's ring in her mouth. "Take it, dear Avenant," said she, "I promised to repay you for saving my life, and now I can fulfil my promise."

Thanking her a thousand times, Avenant, going at once to the Palace, said, "Princess, your command is fulfilled; may it please you to receive the King, my master, as your husband."

The Princess thought she must be dreaming when she saw the ring, but she set Avenant another task.

"Not far from here there is a prince named Galifron," said she; "he wishes to marry me, and threatens to ravish my kingdom if I refuse; but how can I accept him? He is a giant, taller than my highest tower, he eats a man as a monkey would eat a chestnut, and when he speaks, his voice is so loud that it deafens those who hear him. He will not take my refusal, but kills my subjects. You must fight and bring me his head."



"Well, madam," replied Avenant, "I will fight Galifron; I expect I shall be killed, but I shall die a brave man." And, taking Cabriole, Avenant set out for Galifron's country, asking news of the giant as he went along, and the more he heard the more he feared him, but Cabriole reassured him. "My dear master," said the little dog, "while you are fighting him I will bite his legs, then he will stoop to chase me, and you will kill him." Avenant admired the bravery of the little dog, but he knew his help would not be sufficient.

Presently they perceived how the roads were covered with the bones of the men that Galifron had eaten, and soon they saw the giant coming towards them through a wood. His head was higher than the highest trees, and he sang in a terrific voice:

"Where are the children small, so small, With my teeth I will crush them all, On so many would I feed, feed, feed. The whole world can't supply my need."

Using the same tune, Avenant began to sing:

"Look down, here is Avenant beneath, beneath He will draw from your head, the teeth, the teeth Although he is not very big, 'tis true, He is able to fight with such as you."

The giant put himself into a terrible passion, and would have killed Avenant with one blow, only a raven from above flew at his head, and pecked him straight in the eyes, so violently that he was blinded. He began striking out on all sides, but Avenant avoided his blows, and with his sword pierced him so many times that at last he fell to the ground. Then Avenant cut off his head, and the raven, who had perched on a tree, said,

"I have not forgotten how you rescued me from the eagle; I promised to repay you, I think I have done so to-day."

"I owe everything to you, Mr. Raven," responded Avenant, as, holding Galifron's head, he rode off.

When he entered the town, crowds followed him crying, "Here is the brave Avenant who has slain the monster."

Avenant advanced to the Princess, and said, "Madam, your enemy is dead. I hope you will no more refuse the King, my master."

"Although it is so," answered the Princess, "I shall refuse him unless you will bring me some water from the Grotto of Darkness. At the entrance there are two dragons, with fire in their eyes and mouths; inside the grotto there is a deep pit into which you must descend, it is full of toads, scorpions, and serpents. At the bottom of this pit there is a little cave where flows the fountain of beauty and health. Positively I must possess the water; all who wash in it, if they are beautiful, continue so always, if they are ugly they become beautiful; if they are young they remain young, if they are old they regain their youth. You cannot wonder, Avenant, that I will not leave my kingdom without taking it with me."

So once more Avenant and Cabriole set out; they journeyed on until they came to a rock, black as ink, from which smoke was issuing, and a moment later there appeared one of the dragons belching forth fire from his eyes and mouth. He was a frightful looking creature with a green and yellow body, and his tail was so long that it went into a hundred curves. Avenant saw all this, but resolved to die, he drew his sword, and, carrying the flask the Princess had given to him to hold the water, he said to Cabriole:

"My days are ended, I can never obtain that water the dragons are guarding; when I am dead, fill this flask with my blood and carry it to the Princess, that she may know what it has cost me, then go to the King, my master, and tell him of my misfortune."

As he was speaking, a voice called, "Avenant, Avenant," and looking around he saw an owl. "You saved my life from the fowlers," said the owl. "I promised to repay you, the time has now come. Give me your flask. I will bring you the water of beauty."

And carrying the flask, the owl entered the grotto, unhindered, returning in less than a quarter of an hour with it full to the brim. Avenant thanked the owl heartily, and joyously started for the town, where he presented the flask to the Princess, who immediately gave orders to prepare for her departure.

But as she considered Avenant altogether charming, before she set out, she several times said to him: "If you wish, we need not go, for I will make you king of my country." But Avenant made reply:

"I would not displease my master for all the kingdoms of earth, although your beauty I consider greater than that of the sun."

Thus they arrived at the King's capital, and the wedding took place amidst great rejoicings; but Princess Goldenhair, who loved Avenant from the depths of her heart, was not happy unless she could see him, and was for ever singing his praises. "I should not have come, had it not been for Avenant," she told the King, "you ought to be very much obliged to him." Then the envious courtiers counselled the King, and Avenant was cast once more into the tower, chained hand and foot. When Princess Goldenhair heard of this imprisonment, she fell on her knees before the King, and begged for Avenant's release; but he would not heed her, so that she became saddened and would speak no more.

Then the King thought: "Maybe I am not handsome enough to please her!" so he determined to wash his face in the water of beauty.

Now it had happened that a chamber-maid had broken the flask containing this wonderful water, so that it was all spilled; then, without saying anything to anyone, she had replaced it by a similar flask taken from the King's apartment, but the liquid in this flask was really that which was used when the princes or great lords were condemned to death, for, instead of being beheaded, their faces were washed with this water and they fell asleep and did not wake again. And so the King using this water one evening, thinking it to be the beauty water, and hoping and expecting to be made more handsome, went to sleep and awoke no more. Upon hearing what had occurred, Cabriole at once went and told Avenant, who asked him to go to the Princess Goldenhair and beseech her to remember the poor prisoner. When the Princess received this message, she went straight to the tower, and, with her own hands, struck off the chains that bound Avenant, and placing a crown of gold upon his head, and a royal mantle upon his shoulders, said: "Come, dear Avenant, I will make you King, and take you for my husband." Then there was a grand wedding, and Princess Goldenhair and Avenant, with Cabriole, lived long, all of them happy and contented.



LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD

Many years ago there lived a dear little girl, who was beloved by everyone who knew her; but her grandmother was so very fond of her that she never felt that she could think and do enough for her.

On her grand-daughter's birthday she presented her with a red silk hood; and as it suited her very well, she would never wear anything else; and so she was called Little Red Riding Hood. One day her mother said to her, "Come, Red Riding Hood, here is a nice piece of meat, and a bottle of wine: take these to your grandmother; she is weak and ailing, and they will do her good. Be there before she gets up; go quietly and carefully; and do not run, or you may fall and break the bottle, and then your grandmother will have nothing. When you go into her room, do not forget to say 'Good-morning'; and do not pry into all the corners." "I will do just as you say," answered Red Riding Hood, bidding good-bye to her mother.



The grandmother lived far away in the wood, a long walk from the village, and as Little Red Riding Hood came among the trees she met a wolf; but she did not know what a wicked animal it was, and so she was not at all frightened. "Good-morning, Little Red Riding Hood," he said.

"Thank you, Mr. Wolf," she said.

"Where are you going so early, Little Red Riding Hood?"

"To my grandmother's," she answered.

"And what are you carrying under your apron?"

"Some wine and meat," she replied. "We baked the meat yesterday, so that grandmother, who is very weak, might have a nice strengthening meal."

"And where does your grandmother live?" asked the Wolf.

"Oh, quite twenty minutes' walk further in the forest. The cottage stands under three great oak trees; and close by are some nut bushes, by which you will at once know it."

The wolf was thinking to himself, "She is a nice tender thing, and will taste better than the old woman; I must act cleverly, that I may make a meal of both."



Presently he came up again to Little Red Riding Hood and said. "Just look at the beautiful flowers which grow near you; why do you not look about you? I believe you don't hear how sweetly the birds are singing. You walk as if you were going to school; see how cheerful everything is around you in the forest."

And Little Red Riding Hood opened her eyes; and when she saw how the sunbeams glanced and danced through the trees, and what bright flowers were blooming in her path, she thought, "If I take my grandmother a fresh nosegay she will be much pleased; and it is so very early that I can, even then, get there in good time:" and running into the forest she looked about for flowers. But when she had once begun she did not know how to leave off, and kept going deeper and deeper among the trees looking for some still more beautiful flower. The Wolf, however, ran straight to the house of the old grandmother, and knocked at the door.

"Who's that?" asked the old lady.

"Only little Red Riding Hood, bringing you some meat and wine; please open the door," answered the Wolf.

"Lift up the latch," cried the grandmother; "I am much too ill to get up myself."

So the Wolf lifted the latch, and the door flew open; and without a word he jumped on to the bed and gobbled up the poor old lady. Then he put on her clothes, and tied her night-cap over his head; got into the bed, and drew the blankets over him.

All this time Red Riding Hood was gathering flowers; and when she had picked as many as she could carry, she thought of her grandmother, and hurried to the cottage. She wondered very much to find the door open; and when she got into the room, she began to feel very ill, and exclaimed, "How sad I feel! I wish I had not come to-day." Then she said, "Good morning," but received no reply; so she went up to the bed, and drew back the curtains, and there lay her grandmother as she imagined, with the cap drawn half over her eyes and looking very fierce.

"Oh, grandmother, what great ears you have!"

"All the better to hear you with," was the reply.

"And what great eyes you have!"

"All the better to see you with."

"And what great hands you have!"

"All the better to touch you with."

"But, grandmother, what very great teeth you have!"

"All the better to eat you with;" and hardly were the words spoken when the Wolf made a jump out of bed and swallowed down poor Little Red Riding Hood also.

As soon as he had thus satisfied his hunger, he laid himself down again on the bed, and went to sleep and snored very loudly. A huntsman passing by overheard him, and said, "How loudly that old woman snores! I must see if anything is the matter."

So he went into the cottage; and when he came to the bed, he saw the Wolf sleeping in it.

"What! are you here, you old rascal? I have been looking for you," exclaimed he; and taking up his gun, he shot the old Wolf through the head.

But it is also said that the story ends in a different manner; for that one day, when Red Riding Hood was taking some presents to her grandmother, a Wolf met her, and wanted to mislead her; but she went straight on, and told her grandmother that she had met a Wolf, who said good-day; but he looked so hungrily out of his great eyes, as if he would have eaten her up had she not been on the high road.

So her grandmother said, "We will shut the door, and then he cannot get in."

Soon after, up came the Wolf, who tapped, and exclaimed, "I am Little Red Riding Hood, grandmother; I have some roast meat for you." But they kept quite quiet, and did not open the door; so the Wolf, after looking several times round the house, at last jumped on to the roof, thinking to wait till Red Riding Hood went home in the evening, and then to creep after her and eat her in the darkness.

The old woman, however, saw what the villain intended. There stood before the door a large stone trough, and she said to Little Red Riding Hood, "Take this bucket, dear: yesterday I boiled some meat in this water, now pour it into the stone trough." Then the Wolf sniffed the smell of the meat, and his mouth watered, and he wished very much to taste.

At last he stretched his neck too far over, so that he lost his balance, and fell down from the roof, right into the great trough below, and there he was drowned.



THE WHITE FAWN

There was once upon a time a King and Queen who were perfectly happy, with one exception, and that was that they had no child.

One day when the Queen was staying in a watering-place, some distance from home, she was sitting by a fountain alone, sadly thinking of the daughter she longed to have, when she perceived a crab coming in her direction, who, to the Queen's surprise, addressed her thus:

"Great Queen, if you will condescend to be conducted by a humble crab, I will lead you to a Fairies' palace and your wish shall be fulfilled."

"I would certainly come with you," replied the Queen, "but I am afraid that I cannot walk backwards."

The crab smiled, and transforming herself into a beautiful little old woman, said:

"Now, madam, it is not necessary to go backwards. Come with me, and I beg of you to look upon me as your friend." She then escorted the Queen to the most magnificent palace that could possibly be imagined, it was built entirely of diamonds.

In this superb place dwelt six Fairies who received the Queen with the greatest respect, and each one presented her with a flower made of precious stones—a rose, tulip, an anemone, a columbine, a violet, and a carnation.

"Madam," they said, "we have pleasure in telling you that soon you will have a daughter whom you will name Desiree. Directly she arrives, do not fail to call upon us, for we will bestow all sorts of good gifts upon her. You have only to hold this bouquet, and mention each flower, thinking of us, and be assured that we shall at once appear in your chamber."

The Queen, transported with joy, and overcome with gratitude, threw herself upon their necks, and warmly embraced them; she then spent several hours admiring the wonders of the palace and its gardens, and it was not until evening that she returned to her attendants, who were in a serious state of anxiety at the prolonged absence of Her Majesty.



Not very long afterwards, when the Queen was once more at home in her Royal Palace, a baby Princess was born, whom she named Desiree. Then taking the bouquet into her hand, the Queen, one by one, pronounced the names of the flowers, when there immediately appeared, flying through the air in elegant chariots drawn by different kinds of birds, the six Fairies who entered the apartment, bearing beautiful presents for the little baby. Marvellously fine linen, but so strong that it could be worn a hundred years without going into holes, lace of the finest, with the history of the world worked into its pattern, toys of all descriptions that a child would love to play with, and a cradle ornamented with rubies and diamonds, and supported by four Cupids ready to rock it should the baby cry. But, best of all, the Fairies endowed the little Princess with beauty, and virtue, and health, and every good thing that could be desired.

The Queen was thanking the Fairies a thousand times for all their favours, when the door opened, and a crab appeared.

"Ungrateful Queen," said the crab, "you have not deigned to remember me, the Fairy of the Fountain; and to punish your ingratitude, if the Princess sees daylight before she is fifteen years old, she will have cause to repent it, and it may cost her her life. It was well I took the form of a crab, for your friendship instead of advancing has gone backwards." Then in spite of all the Queen and the Fairies could say, the crab went backwards out of the door, leaving them in the saddest consternation, and it was long before they could decide what was best to be done.

Then, with three waves of a wand, the Fairies caused a high tower to spring up; it had neither door nor window, an underground passage was made, through which everything necessary could be carried, and in this tower the little Princess was shut up and there she lived by candlelight, where never a glimpse of the sun could come.

When the Princess Desiree was fourteen years old, the Queen had her portrait painted, and copies of it were carried to all the Courts in the world. All the Princes admired it greatly, but there was one Prince, named Guerrier, who loved it above everything; he used to stand before the picture and avow his passion, just as if it heard what he said, and at last he told the King, his father.

"You have resolved that I shall marry the Princess Noire, but this I can never do, so great is my love for the Princess Desiree."

"But where have you seen her?" enquired the King.

The Prince hastened to fetch her portrait, and the King was so greatly struck by Desiree's beauty that he agreed to follow his son's wishes and break off his engagement with the Princess Noire, that he might wed the Princess Desiree. So the King despatched as ambassador a rich young lord named Becafigue.

Becafigue was devoted to Prince Guerrier, and he fitted out a most splendid retinue to visit the Princess Desiree's Court. Besides numerous magnificent presents, Becafigue took with him the Prince's portrait, which had been painted by such a clever artist that it would speak; it could not exactly answer questions, but could make certain remarks. It was truly a speaking likeness of the young Prince. Desiree's father and mother were delighted when they heard that the Prince Guerrier was seeking their daughter's hand in marriage, for they knew him to be a brave and noble young man. But as it still wanted three months to the Princess's fifteenth year, warned by the Fairy Tulip, who had taken Desiree under her special care, they refused to let him see their daughter or to let her yet marry the Prince Guerrier, but they showed her the Prince's portrait, with which she was greatly pleased, and particularly when it said, "Lovely Desiree, you cannot imagine how ardently I am waiting for you; come soon into our Court to make it beautiful by your presence."



When Prince Guerrier saw the ambassador return without Desiree, he was so terribly disappointed that he could neither eat nor sleep, and before long fell dangerously ill.

Meanwhile Desiree had no less pleasure in looking at the Prince's portrait than he had had admiring hers, and this was soon discovered by those around her, and among others Giroflee and Longue Epine, her maids of honour. Giroflee loved her passionately and faithfully, but Longue Epine was full of envy of the Princess who was so good and beautiful, and, besides Longue Epine, Desiree had another enemy, and that was the Princess Noire, to whom Prince Guerrier had been betrothed. This Princess Noire now went to the Fairy of the Fountain, who was her best friend, and begged her to take revenge upon Princess Desiree, and this the Fairy promised to do. Meanwhile once more Becafigue came to the capital where Desiree's father lived, and throwing himself at the King's feet, besought him in most touching words to let his daughter go with him at once to the Prince, who would surely die if he could not behold her.

When Princess Desiree heard of the Prince's illness, she suggested that she should set out without delay, but in a dark carriage, that only at night should be opened to give her food. This plan was approved of; the ambassador was told, and he departed full of joy. So in a carriage like a large dark box, shut up with her Lady in Waiting and her two Maids of Honour, Giroflee and Longue Epine, Princess Desiree departed for Prince Guerrier's Court.

Perhaps you will remember that Longue Epine did not like Princess Desiree, but she greatly admired Prince Guerrier, for she had seen his portrait speaking, and she had told her mother, the Lady in Waiting, that she should die if he married Desiree.

The King and Queen had begged the Lady in Waiting to take the greatest of care of their dear daughter, and above all to be heedful that she did not see the light of day until her fifteenth birthday, saying that the ambassador had promised that until then she should be placed where there was no other light than that of candles. But now as they drew near their destination, while it was broad daylight the wicked woman, urged by her envious daughter, Longue Epine, all at once took a large knife which she had brought for the purpose, and with it cut the covering of the carriage.

Then, for the first time, the Princess Desiree saw the light of day!!! Hardly had she perceived it when, uttering a deep sigh, she threw herself from the carriage, and in the form of a white fawn fleetly fled into a forest near by.

The Fairy of the Fountain, who was the cause of this disaster seeing that all who were accompanying the Princess were about to hasten to the town to tell the Prince Guerrier what had happened, called up a great thunderstorm and scattered them in every direction. Only the Lady in Waiting, Longue Epine and Giroflee were left, Giroflee, who ran after her mistress, making the trees and rocks echo with her mournful calls. Then Longue Epine clothed herself in the rich bridal robes provided for Desiree. She placed the crown upon her head, the sceptre and orb she carried in her hands, so that all should take her for the Princess. With her mother bearing her train she gravely walked in the direction of the town.



They had not gone far when a brilliant procession came towards them, amongst whom was the sick Prince in a litter, and to those in advance Longue Epine announced that she was the Princess Desiree, with her Lady in Waiting, but that a jealous Fairy had sent a thunderstorm which had destroyed her carriage and scattered her other attendants. When the Prince was told of this, he could not refrain from saying to the messengers: "Now acknowledge, is she not truly a miracle of beauty, a Princess beyond compare?"

No one replied at first, and then one of the boldest said,

"Sir, you will see; apparently the fatigue of the journey has somewhat changed her." The Prince was surprised, but when he saw Longue Epine words fail to express what he felt.

She was so tall that it was alarming, and the garments of the Princess hardly came to her knees. She was frightfully thin, and her nose, which was more hooked than a parrot's beak, shone like a danger signal. Then her teeth were black and uneven, and, in fact, she was as ugly as Desiree was beautiful.

At first the Prince could not speak a word, he simply gazed at her in amazement. Then he said, turning to his father, "We have been deceived, that portrait was painted to mislead us. It will be the death of me."

"What do I hear, they have deceived you," fiercely exclaimed Longue Epine.

"It is not to be wondered at," remarked the King, "that your father kept such a treasure shut up for fifteen years."

Then he and the Prince turned towards the town, and the false Princess and the Lady in Waiting, without any ceremony, were mounted each behind a soldier and taken to be shut up in a castle.



Soon after his terrible disappointment, Prince Guerrier, unable to bear any longer the life at court, secretly departed from the palace with his faithful friend Becafigue, leaving a letter for his father saying he would return to him as soon as his mind was in a happier state, and begging him meanwhile to keep the ugly Princess prisoner, and think of some revenge upon the deceitful king, her father.

After three or four days' journeying, the wanderers found themselves in a thick forest. Quite wearied out, the Prince threw himself upon the ground, while Becafigue went on further in search of fruit wherewith to refresh his royal master.

It is a long time since we left the White Fawn, that is to say the charming Princess.

Very desolately she wept when in a stream she saw her figure reflected, and when night came she was in great fear, for she heard wild beasts about her, and sometimes forgetting she was a fawn she would try to climb a tree. But with morning dawn she felt a little safer, and the sun appeared a marvellous sight to her from which she could hardly turn her eyes. But now the Fairy Tulip, who had always loved the Princess guided Giroflee's feet in her direction, and when the White Fawn saw her faithful Maid of Honour her delight was boundless.

It did not take Giroflee long to discover that this was her dearly-loved mistress, and she promised the White Fawn never to forsake her, for she found she could hear all that was said although she could not speak. Towards night the fear of having no shelter made the two friends so dreadfully dismayed that the Fairy Tulip suddenly appeared before them.



"I am not going to scold you," she said, "although it is through not following my advice that you are in this misfortune, for it goes to my heart to see you thus. I cannot release you altogether from this enchantment, but I have power to shorten the time, and also to say that during the night you may regain your rightful form, but by day again must you run through the forest as a Fawn." The fairy also told them where they could find a little hut in which to pass the nights. Then she disappeared. Giroflee and the Fawn walked in the direction the Fairy had pointed out, and arrived at a neat little cottage where an old woman showed them a room which they could occupy.

As soon as it was night Desiree came to her rightful form, but when day appeared she was once more a Fawn and, escaping into the thicket, commenced to run about in the ordinary way.

You have heard how Prince Guerrier rested in the forest while Becafigue searched for fruit; quite late in the evening Becafigue arrived at the cottage of the good woman who had given shelter to Giroflee and the White Fawn. He addressed her politely and asked for the things he required for his master. She hastened to fill a basket, and gave it to him, saying, "I fear that if you pass a night without shelter some harm may come to you. I can offer you a poor one, but at any rate it is secure from the lions."

Becafigue went back to the Prince and together they returned to the cottage, where they were led into the room next to that occupied by the Princess.

Next morning the Prince arose early and went out; he had not long been in the forest when he saw a beautiful little Fawn. Hunting had ever been his favourite pastime, and now he pursued the little creature. All day long hither and thither he chased, but did not succeed in capturing her, and as evening fell the Fawn slipped away and gained the little hut where Giroflee anxiously awaited her, and on hearing her adventure the Maid of Honour told her she must never again venture out, but the Princess replied:

"It is no use talking thus, when I am a Fawn this room is stifling to me and I must depart from it."

The next day the young Prince sought in vain for the White Fawn, and finally tired out threw himself upon the grass and fell asleep.

While he lay there the little Fawn drew near and looking at him quietly, to her astonishment she recognised his features as those of the Prince Guerrier. Coming nearer and nearer she presently touched him and he awoke.

His surprise was great at seeing close by the shy little Fawn, who stayed not an instant longer but fled away, the Prince following.

"Stay, dear little Fawn," he cried, "I would not hurt you for the world." But the wind carried off the words before they reached her ears. Long he chased the poor creature, till at last worn out the Fawn sank down on the ground and the Prince came up to her.

"Beautiful Fawn," said he, "do not fear me, I shall lead you with me everywhere." Then he covered her with roses and fed her with the choicest leaves and grasses.

But as evening drew near the Fawn longed to escape, for what would happen should she suddenly change into a Princess there in the forest. Presently the Prince went to fetch some water for her, and while he was gone she ran homewards. The next day for a long time she hid from the Prince, but at last he found her, and as she dashed off he shot an arrow which wounded her in the leg.

Sad that he should have done so cruel a thing, the Prince took herbs and laid them upon the wound, and at last he went to fetch Becafigue to help him carry her to the house. He tied her to a tree.

Alas! Who would have thought that the most beautiful Princess in the world would be treated thus? While she was straining at the ribbons trying to break them, Giroflee arrived, and was leading her away when the Prince met them and claimed the Fawn as his.

"Sir," politely replied Giroflee, "the Fawn was mine before it was yours," and she spoke to the Fawn, and the Fawn obeyed her in such a way that the Prince could not doubt that what she said was true. Giroflee then went on, and, to the surprise of the Prince and Becafigue, entered the old woman's house where they themselves lodged. Then Becafigue told the Prince that unless he was much mistaken the owner of the Fawn had lived with the Princess Desiree when he went there as ambassador.

"I mean to see her again," said Becafigue, "there is only a partition between her room and ours." And soon he had made a hole large enough to peep through, and through it he saw the charming Princess dressed in a robe of brocaded silver, with flowers embroidered in gold and emeralds, her hair falling in heavy masses on the most beautiful neck in the world. Giroflee was on her knees before her, bandaging up one arm from which the blood was flowing. They both seemed greatly concerned about the wound: "Let me die," the Princess was saying, "death would be better than the life which I lead. To be a Fawn all the day, to hear him speaking, and not to be able to tell him of my sad fate."

One can guess the astonishment of Becafigue and of the Prince. Guerrier would almost have died of pleasure had he not thought that it must be some enchantment, for did he not know that Desiree and her Lady in Waiting were shut up in the castle.

He went softly and knocked at the chamber door, which Giroflee opened, thinking it was the old woman, for she required help for the wounded arm.

The Prince entered, threw himself at Desiree's feet, and found she was indeed his Princess.

Great was their joy thus at last meeting, and while they were talking to each other the night passed, and the day dawned, and daylight came, and the morning sun shone brightly before Desiree had time to notice that she had not again taken the shape of a Fawn, but was her own beautiful self.

Then it was found that it was the Fairy Tulip in disguise of the old woman who had provided that sheltering cottage in the forest.

The joy of the King upon once more seeing his son can well be imagined, and the marriage of the Prince and Desiree, and Becafigue and Giroflee took place on the same day, the Fairies giving their diamond palace as their wedding present to Princess Desiree, and Fairy Tulip presenting four gold mines in the Indies to Giroflee.



And, in accordance with the wish of Princess Desiree, Longue Epine and her mother, the false Lady in Waiting, were set at liberty.



HANSEL AND GRETHEL

Once upon a time there dwelt near a large wood a poor wood cutter, with his wife, and two children by his former marriage, a little boy called Hansel, and a girl named Grethel. He had little enough to break or bite; and once, when there was a great famine in the land, he could hardly procure even his daily bread; and as he lay thinking in his bed one night, he sighed, and said to his wife, "What will become of us? How can we feed our children, when we have no more than we can eat ourselves?"

"Know then, my husband," answered she, "we will lead them away, quite early in the morning, into the thickest part of the wood, and there make them a fire, and give them each a little piece of bread, then we will go to our work, and leave them alone, so they will not find the way home again, and we shall be freed from them."

"No, wife," replied he, "that I can never do; how can you bring your heart to leave my children all alone in the wood; for the wild beasts will soon come and tear them to pieces?"

"Oh, you simpleton!" said she, "then we must all four die of hunger; you had better plane the coffins for us." But she left him no peace till he consented, saying, "Ah, but I shall miss the poor children."

The two children, however, had not gone to sleep, for very hunger, and so they overheard what the stepmother said to their father. Grethel wept bitterly, and said to Hansel, "What will become of us?"

"Be quiet, Grethel," said he; "do not cry—I will help you." And as soon as their parents had gone to sleep, he got up, put on his coat, and, unbarring the back door, went out. The moon shone brightly, and the white pebbles which lay before the door seemed like silver pieces, they glittered so brightly. Hansel stooped down, and put as many into his pocket as it would hold; and then going back he said to Grethel, "Be of good cheer, dear sister, and sleep in peace; God will not forsake us." And so saying, he went to bed again.

The next morning, before the sun arose, the wife went and awoke the two children. "Get up, you lazy things; we are going into the forest to chop wood." Then she gave them each a piece of bread, saying, "There is something for your dinner; do not eat it before the time, for you will get nothing else." Grethel took the bread in her apron, for Hansel's pocket was full of pebbles; and so they all set out upon their way. When they had gone a little distance, Hansel stood still, and peeped back at the house; and this he repeated several times, till his father said, "Hansel, what are you looking at, and why do you lag behind? Take care, and remember your legs."

"Ah, father," said Hansel, "I am looking at my white cat sitting upon the roof of the house, and trying to say good-bye."

"You simpleton!" said the wife, "that is not a cat; it is only the sun shining on the white chimney." But in reality Hansel was not looking at a cat; but every time he stopped, he dropped a pebble out of his pocket upon the path.

When they came to the middle of the forest, the father told the children to collect wood, and he would make them a fire, so that they should not be cold. So Hansel and Grethel gathered together quite a little mount of twigs. Then they set fire to them; and as the flame burnt up high, the wife said, "Now, you children, lie down near the fire, and rest yourselves, whilst we go into the forest and chop more wood; when we are ready we will come and call you."

Hansel and Grethel sat down by the fire, and when it was noon, each ate the piece of bread; and because they could hear the blows of an axe they thought their father was near; but it was not an axe, but a branch which he had bound to an old tree, so as to be blown to and fro by the wind. They waited so long, that at last their eyes closed from weariness, and they fell fast asleep. When they awoke, it was quite dark, and Grethel began to cry. "How shall we get out of the wood?" But Hansel tried to comfort her by saying, "Wait a little while till the moon rises, and then we will quickly find the way." The moon shone forth, and Hansel, taking his sister's hand, followed the pebbles, which glittered like new-coined silver pieces, and showed them the way. All night long they walked on, and as day broke they came to their father's house. They knocked at the door, and when the wife opened it, and saw Hansel and Grethel, she exclaimed, "You wicked children! Why did you sleep so long in the wood? We thought you were never coming home again." But their father was extremely glad, for it had grieved his heart to leave them all alone.



Not long afterwards there was again great scarcity in every corner of the land; and one night the children overheard their mother saying to their father, "Everything is once more consumed; we have only half a loaf left, and then the song is ended: the children must be sent away. We will take them deeper into the wood, so that they may not find the way out again; it is the only means of escape for us."

But her husband felt heavy at heart, and thought, "It were better to share the last crust with the children." His wife, however, would listen to nothing that he said, and scolded and reproached him without end.

He who says A must say B too; and he who consents the first time must also the second.

The children, however, had heard the conversation as they lay awake, and as soon as their parents went to sleep Hansel got up, intending to pick up some pebbles as before; but the wife had locked the door, so that he could not get out. Nevertheless he comforted Grethel, saying, "Do not weep; sleep in quiet; the good God will not forsake us."

Early in the morning the stepmother came and pulled them out of bed, and gave them each a slice of bread, which was still smaller than the former piece. On the way Hansel broke his in his pocket, and stopping every now and then, dropped a crumb upon the path. "Hansel, why do you stop and look about?" said the father, "keep in the path." "I am looking at my little dove," answered Hansel, "nodding a good-bye to me." "Simpleton!" said the wife, "that is no dove, but only the sun shining on the chimney." But Hansel kept still dropping crumbs as he went along.

The mother led the children deep into the wood, where they had never been before, and there making a gigantic fire, she said to them, "Sit down here and rest, and when you feel tired you can sleep for a little while. We are going into the forest to hew wood, and in the evening, when we are ready, we will come and fetch you again."

When noon came, Grethel shared her bread with Hansel, who had strewn his on the path. They then went to sleep; but the evening arrived and no one came to visit the poor children, and in the dark night they awoke, and Hansel comforted his sister by saying, "Only wait, Grethel, till the moon comes out, then we shall see the crumbs of bread which I have dropped, and they will show us the way home." The moon shone and they got up, but they could not see any crumbs, for the thousands of birds which had been flying about in the woods and fields had picked them all up. Hansel kept saying to Grethel, "We will soon find the way;" but they did not, and they walked the whole night long and the next day, but still they did not come out of the wood; and they got very hungry, for they had nothing to eat but the berries which they found upon the bushes. Soon they were so tired that they could not drag themselves along, then they lay down under a tree and again went to sleep.



It was now the third morning since they had left their father's house, and they still walked on; but they only got deeper, and deeper, and deeper into the wood, and Hansel felt that if help did not come very soon they must die of hunger. As soon as it was noon they saw a beautiful, snow-white bird sitting upon a bough, singing so sweetly that they stood still and listened to it. It soon ceased, and spreading its wings flew off; and they followed it until it arrived at a cottage, upon the roof of which it perched; and when they went close up to it they saw that the cottage was made of bread and cakes, and the window-panes were of clear sugar.

"We will go in here," said Hansel, "and have a glorious feast. I will eat a piece of the roof, and you can eat the window. Will they not be sweet?" So Hansel reached up and broke a piece off the roof, in order to see how it tasted; while Grethel stepped up to the window and began to bite it. Then a sweet voice called out in the room, "Tip-tap, tip-tap, who knocks at my door?" and the children answered, "The wind, the wind, the child of heaven;" and they went on eating without interruption. Hansel thought the roof tasted very nice, and so he tore off a great piece; while Grethel broke a large round pane out of the window, and sat down quite contentedly. Just then the door opened, and a very old woman, walking upon crutches, came out. Hansel and Grethel were so much frightened that they let fall what they had in their hands; but the old woman nodding her head, said, "Ah, you dear children, what has brought you here? Come in and stop with me, and no harm shall come to you;" and so saying she took them both by the hand, and led them into her cottage. A good meal of milk and pancakes, with sugar, apples and nuts, was spread on the table, and in the back room were two nice little beds, covered with white, where Hansel and Grethel laid themselves down, and were happy as could be. The old woman behaved very kindly to them, but in reality she was a wicked old witch who way-laid children, and built the breadhouse in order to entice them in; but as soon as they were in her power she killed them, cooked and ate them, and made a great festival of the day. Witches have red eyes, and cannot see very far; but they have a fine sense of smelling, like wild beasts, so that they know when children approach them. When Hansel and Grethel came near the witch's house she laughed wickedly, saying, "Here come two who shall not escape me." And early in the morning, before they awoke, she went up to them, and saw how lovingly they lay sleeping, with their chubby red cheeks; and she mumbled to herself, "That will be a good bite." Then she took up Hansel with her rough hand, and shut him up in a little cage with a lattice-door; and although he screamed loudly it was of no use. Grethel came next, and shaking her till she awoke, she said, "Get up, you lazy brat, and fetch some water to cook something good for your brother, who must remain in that stall and get fat; and when he is fat enough I shall eat him." Grethel began to cry, but it was all useless, for the old witch made her do as she wanted. So a nice meal was cooked for Hansel, but Grethel got nothing else but a crab's claw.

Every morning the old witch came to the cage and said, "Hansel, stretch out your finger that I may feel whether you are getting fat." But Hansel used to stretch out a bone, and the old woman, having very bad sight, thought it was his finger, and wondered very much why he did not get fat. When four weeks had passed, and Hansel still kept quite lean, she lost all her patience, and would not wait any longer. "Grethel," she cried in a passion, "get some water quickly; be Hansel fat or lean, this morning I will kill and cook him." Oh, how the poor little sister grieved, as she was forced to fetch the water, and fast the tears ran down her cheeks! "Dear good God, help us now!" she prayed. "Had we only been eaten by the wild beasts in the wood, then we should have died together." But the old witch called out, "Leave off that noise; it will not help you a bit."

So early in the morning Grethel was compelled to go out and fill the kettle, and make a fire. "First, we will bake, however," said the old woman; "I have already heated the oven and kneaded the dough;" and so saying, she pushed poor Grethel up to the oven, out of which the flames were burning fiercely. "Creep in," said the witch, "and see if it is hot enough, and then we will put in the bread," but she intended when Grethel got in, to shut up the oven and let her bake, so that she might eat her as well as Hansel. Grethel perceived her wicked thoughts and said, "I do not know how to do it; how shall I get in?" "You stupid goose," said she, "the opening is big enough. See, I could even get in myself!" and she got up, and put her head into the oven. Then Grethel gave her a push, so that she fell right in, and shutting the iron door bolted it. Oh! how horribly the witch howled; but Grethel ran away, and left her to burn to ashes.



Now she ran to Hansel, and, opening the door, called out, "Hansel we are saved; the old witch is dead?"

So he sprang out, like a bird from his cage when the door was opened; and they were so glad that they fell upon each other's neck, and kissed each other over and over again. And now, as there was nothing to fear, they went back to the witch's house, where in every corner were caskets full of pearls and precious stones. "These are better than pebbles," said Hansel, putting as many into his pocket as it would hold; while Grethel thought, "I will take some home too," and filled her apron full.

"We must be off now," said Hansel, "and get out of this enchanted forest;" but when they had walked for two hours they came to a large piece of water.

"We cannot get over," said Hansel; "I can see no bridge at all." "And there is no boat either," said Grethel, "but there swims a white duck, I will ask her to help us over;" and she sang,

"Little Duck, good little Duck, Grethel and Hansel, together we stand; There is neither stile nor bridge, Take us on your back to land."

So the Duck came to them, and Hansel sat himself on, and bade his sister sit beside him. "No," replied Grethel, "that will be too much for the Duck, she shall take us over one at a time." This the good little bird did, and when both were happily arrived on the other side, and had gone a little way, they came to a well-known wood, which they knew the better every step they went, and at last they perceived their father's house. Then they began to run, and rushing into the house, they fell upon their father's neck. He had not had one happy hour since he had left the children in the forest; and his wife was dead. Grethel shook her apron, and the pearls and precious stones rolled out upon the floor, and Hansel threw down one handful after the other out of his pocket. Then all their sorrows were ended, and they lived together in great happiness.



SNOW-WHITE AND ROSE-RED

A poor widow once lived in a little cottage. In front of the cottage was a garden, in which were growing two rose trees; one of these bore white roses, and the other red.

She had two children, who resembled the rose trees. One was called Snow-White, and the other Rose-Red; and they were as religious and loving, busy and untiring, as any two children ever were.

Snow-White was more gentle, and quieter than her sister, who liked better skipping about the fields, seeking flowers, and catching summer birds; while Snow-White stayed at home with her mother, either helping her in her work, or, when that was done, reading aloud.

The two children had the greatest affection the one for the other. They were always seen hand in hand; and should Snow-White say to her sister, "We will never separate," the other would reply, "Not while we live," the mother adding, "That which one has, let her always share with the other."

They constantly ran together in the woods, collecting ripe berries; but not a single animal would have injured them; quite the reverse, they all felt the greatest esteem for the young creatures. The hare came to eat parsley from their hands, the deer grazed by their side, the stag bounded past them unheeding; the birds, likewise, did not stir from the bough, but sang in entire security. No mischance befell them; if benighted in the wood, they lay down on the moss to repose and sleep till the morning; and their mother was satisfied as to their safety, and felt no fear about them.

Once, when they had spent the night in the wood, and the bright sunrise awoke them, they saw a beautiful child, in a snow-white robe, shining like diamonds, sitting close to the spot where they had reposed. She arose when they opened their eyes, and looked kindly at them; but said no word, and passed from their sight into the wood. When the children looked around they saw they had been sleeping on the edge of a precipice, and would surely have fallen over if they had gone forward two steps further in the darkness. Their mother said the beautiful child must have been the angel who watches over good children.

Snow-White and Rose-Red kept their mother's cottage so clean that it gave pleasure only to look in. In summer-time Rose-Red attended to the house, and every morning, before her mother awoke, placed by her bed a bouquet which had in it a rose from each of the rose-trees. In winter-time Snow-White set light to the fire, and put on the kettle, after polishing it until it was like gold for brightness. In the evening, when snow was falling, her mother would bid her bolt the door, and then, sitting by the hearth, the good widow would read aloud to them from a big book while the little girls were spinning. Close by them lay a lamb, and a white pigeon, with its head tucked under its wing, was on a perch behind.



One evening, as they were all sitting cosily together like this, there was a knock at the door, as if someone wished to come in.

"Make haste, Rose-Red!" said her mother; "open the door; it is surely some traveller seeking shelter." Rose-Red accordingly pulled back the bolt, expecting to see some poor man. But it was nothing of the kind; it was a bear, that thrust his big head in at the open door. Rose-Red cried out and sprang back, the lamb bleated, the dove fluttered her wings and Snow-White hid herself behind her mother's bed. The bear began speaking, and said, "Do not be afraid: I will not do you any harm; I am half-frozen, and would like to warm myself a little at your fire."

"Poor bear!" the mother replied; "come in and lie by the fire; only be careful that your hair is not burnt." Then she called Snow-White and Rose-Red, telling them that the bear was kind, and would not harm them. They came, as she bade them, and presently the lamb and the dove drew near also without fear.

"Children," begged the bear; "knock some of the snow off my coat." So they brought the broom and brushed the bear's coat quite clean.

After that he stretched himself out in front of the fire, and pleased himself by growling a little, only to show that he was happy and comfortable. Before long they were all quite good friends, and the children began to play with their unlooked for visitor, pulling his thick fur, or placing their feet on his back, or rolling him over and over. Then they took a slender hazel twig, using it upon his thick coat, and they laughed when he growled. The bear permitted them to amuse themselves in this way, only occasionally calling out, when it went a little too far, "Children, spare me an inch of life!"



When it was night, and all were making ready to go to bed, the widow told the bear, "You may stay here and lie by the hearth, if you like, so that you will be sheltered from the cold and from the bad weather."

The offer was accepted, but when morning came, as the day broke in the east, the two children let him out, and over the snow he went back into the wood.

After this, every evening at the same time the bear came, lay by the fire, and allowed the children to play with him; so they became quite fond of their curious playmate, and the door was not ever bolted in the evening until he had appeared.

When springtime came, and all around began to look green and bright, one morning the bear said to Snow-White, "Now I must leave you, and all the summer long I shall not be able to come back."

"Where, then, are you going, dear bear?" asked Snow-White. "I have to go to the woods to protect my treasure from the bad dwarfs. In winter time when the earth is frozen hard, they must remain underground, and cannot make their way through; but now that the sunshine has thawed the earth they can come to the surface, and whatever gets into their hands, or is brought to their caves, seldom, if ever, again sees daylight."

Snow-White was very sad when she said good-bye to the good-natured beast, and unfastened the door, that he might go; but in going out he was caught by a hook in the lintel, and a scrap of his fur being torn, Snow-White thought there was something shining like gold through the rent; but he went out so quickly that she could not feel certain what it was, and soon he was hidden among the trees.

One day the mother sent her children into the wood to pick up sticks. They found a big tree lying on the ground. It had been felled, and towards the roots they noticed something skipping and springing, which they could not make out, as it was sometimes hidden in the grasses. As they came nearer they could see it was a dwarf, with a shrivelled up face and a snow-white beard an ell long. The beard was fixed in a gash in the tree trunk, and the tiny fellow was hopping to and fro, like a dog at the end of a string, but he could not manage to free himself. He stared at the children, with his red, fiery eyes, and called out, "Why are you standing there? Can't you come and try to help me?"

"What were you doing, little fellow?" enquired Rose-Red.

"Stupid, inquisitive goose!" replied the dwarf; "I meant to split the trunk, so that I could chop it up for kitchen sticks; big logs would burn up the small quantity of food we cook, for people like us do not consume great heaps of food, as you heavy, greedy folk do. The bill-hook I had driven in, and soon I should have done what I required; but the tool suddenly sprang from the cleft, which so quickly shut up again that it caught my handsome white beard; and here I must stop, for I cannot set myself free. You stupid, pale-faced creatures! You laugh, do you?"

In spite of the dwarf's bad temper, the girls took all possible pains to release the little man, but without avail; the beard could not be moved, it was wedged too tightly.

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