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The Baldwin Lib~aTY
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These Giants were so tall, the sea only came up to their knees
Jack the Giant=Killer.
The Giant Stepped on Jack's Trap and Fell Headlong into the Pit.
IN the days of the renowned King Arthur there lived a Cornishman
named Jack, who was famous for his valiant deeds.
His bold and warlike spirit showed itself in his boyish days; for Jack
took especial delight in listening to the wonderful tales of giants and
fairies, and of the extraordinary feats of valor displayed by the knights of King
Arthur's Round Table, which his father would sometimes relate. Jack's spirit
was so fired by these strange accounts, that he determined, if ever he became
a man, that he would destroy some of the cruel giants who infested the land.
Not many miles from his father's house there lived, on the top of St.
Michael's Mount, a huge giant, who was the terror of the country round, who
was named Cormoran, from his voracious appetite. It is said that he was
eighteen feet in height. When he required food, he came down from his
castle, and, seizing on the flocks of the poor people, would throw half a dozen
oxen over his shoulders, and suspend as many sheep as he could carry, and
stalk back to his castle. He had carried on these depredations many
years; and the poor Cornish people were well-nigh ruined.
Jack went by night to the foot of the mount and dug a very deep pit,
which he covered with sticks and straw, and over which he strewed the earth.
When all was completed, he blew a loud blast with his horn, which aroused
the giant. He came out of his castle in a great rage, and when he saw Jack
at the foot of the mount he roared in a voice like thunder, "You young rascal!
This is the gallant Cornishman,
Who slew the Giant Cormoran.
I will punish you for
daring thus to disturb
me." And so saying,
he came pacing down
tthe mount; but as
soon as he reached the
bottom, he stepped on
Jack's trap, and fell
headlong into the pit.
/t The giant tried to
climb out of the pit,
and as he raised his
head, Jack gave him
such a blow with his
/ wl pickaxe that he fell
The whole coun-
try round rejoiced at
this news, and de-
termined to bestow
some honour upon
Jack as a reward for his
They accordingly presented him
with a sword and belt, on which was
"This is the valiant Cornishman
Who slew the Giant Cormoran."
Jack Crept Under the Bed. And they named him Jack the
The news of his exploit soon reached the ear of a cruel old giant
named Blunderbore, who lived in a castle in the midst of a large wood.
Jack set forth on his journey in pursuit of giants, and it so happened that he
passed through the wood in which Blunderbore resided, and, being rather
tired, he sat down by a clear spring and fell asleep. Whilst in this condition
the giant came to the spring for water, and saw Jack lying there, and, reading
the lines on his belt, he seized him, and walked towards his castle.
"Ah ah I Master Jack," said he, "you are the man I have long wished
to get hold of. You are the man who killed my brother Cormoran, and now
I will torture and kill you."
He locked Jack in a large dungeon, the floor of which was covered with
dead men's bones. Jack heard many shrieks and groans from other parts of
the castle. On searching the dungeon, he found a large cord, which he
thought might help to deliver him. After making a noose, he climbed up to
the grating of the dungeon, which he found was directly over the castle gate.
At a distance he saw the giant coming towards the castle. "Now," said Jack
Jack briakfasts with the two-headed Giant.
/ / to himself, "I must use my
wits, or I am a dead man. If
1 I can drop this noose over his
neck as he passes under the
gate, I shall hang the monster."
Encouraged by this thought,
Jack seized the rope, and, fast-
.ening one end- to a hook, he
m elet drop the noose round his
neck as he passed under the
window, and, putting forth all
his strength, he pulled the rope
'so tight that the giant was
strangled. He then crept
Ii through the bars of his prison,
and, sliding down the rope,
pierced him through with his
Then seizing the keys, which
were tied round the waist of the
Giant, he entered the castle and
o t examined every room. On coming
to one, he found three ladies sus-
pended by the hair of their heads, and
almost starved to death. Jack immedi-
ately released.them and asked how they
came there. Theayold him that the giant
A giant with two heads asked him to had murdered and robbed their husbands,
walk In. and had hung them there until they should
be starved. He traveled on, till night overtook him, when he entered a
lonely valley, in which he found a large castle. Jack, being hungry and
weary, went boldly up to the gate and knocked with all his might. In a few
seconds he was horrified at the sight of a monstrous giant, having two heads,
who came to the gate.
Jack was determined to try his fortune with him, as he knew there were in
his castle four things, which, if he could get hold of them, would be very
valuable to him a coat, which would make him invisible, a cap, to tell him
whatever he desired to know, a sword, which would cut through everything
it touched, and shoes, which would render him as fleet as a horse. The giant
saluted Jack very courteously, and asked him his business. Jack replied that
he was a poor traveler overtaken by the night. The giant told him he was
welcome to shelter in his house, and invited him to come in. He then led
him to a large room and gave him some food, after which he conducted Jack
to his bedroom, and wished him a good night. Jack jumped into bed, but
could not sleep. In the middle of the night he heard the giant pacing about,
and muttering these words:
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Jack knighted by good King Arthur.
"Though here you lodge with me tonight,
You shall not see the morning light,
V With my club I'll kill you outright."
"Oh, indeed I said Jack to himself,
"are these the tricks you play upon
travelers? I'll be as cunning as you,
Jack now crept out of bed and
searched the room for something to put
in his place. He soon found a piece
of wood, which he put into the bed and
covered over, whilst he himself crept
under the bed. Shortly after, he heard
Sthe monster coming towards his room.
The giant came quietly in, and going
up to the bed he struck it several times
with his club, and then left the room,
thinking that he had broken all of poor
Jack's bones. Jack determined to show
'no fear, but to meet the giant just as
<-:9 though nothing had happened, and
putting on a bold, undaunted appear-
ance, he went down into the sitting-
room, and thanked him for his hospit-
tality. The giant started on seeing
A Fierce Giant With Two Heads Was Coming. him, and replied: "You are quite
welcome. Pray, how did you sleep ?
I hope you were not disturbed in the night ?"
"I was disturbed a little," said Jack. Surely you must have rats in
the house, for I felt something like a rat's tail strike my bed two or three
times, but it soon went away."
This speech mightily surprised the giant, but he said nothing. He then
produced two huge bowls of hasty pudding, one of which he set before Jack
and the other he took himself. Jack, instead of eating his, contrived to pour
it down his neck into a leather bag which hung round him.
"'Vhen they had finished, Jack said:
Now, I can do what you cannot; I can run a knife in here," pointing
to his bag, "without killing myself."
He then siezed the knife, plunged it into his leather bag, and out ran
all the pudding on the floor. The giant was surprised at this, and not liking
to be outdone by such a stripling, he siezed the knife, plunged it into his
body, and died on the spot.
Jack siezed the coat, the cap, the sword, and the shoes, and then pursued
In a few days he met with a knight who was going to deliver a lady
from the power of a magician. Jack offered to go with him, and the knight
gladly accepted his t
offer, so they trav-
eled on together.
The two travelers
proceeded until they
arrived at the gates
of the castle. They
knocked for admit-
tance, and were
by the lady, who en-
tertained them with great hospi-
tality. At the end of the repast the
lady abruptly left the room, when in-
Jack put on his cap of knowledge, e '.
which immediately informed him that she
was gone forth to meet a magician in the forest, t
where he exercised his diabolical arts. Jack forth-
with put on his coat, and, becoming invisible, he
went into the forest, where he saw the magician exer-
cising his enchantments on the beautiful lady. Jack ad-
vanced quickly towards him, and with his sword cut off his Jack escapes the Giant with
head, and the lady was immediately delivered from her his shoes of swiftness.
enchantment. They returned to the castle and were joyfully received by the
knight. The following day the knight and his lady were betrothed, and they
set off for the court of King Arthur, where they were received with great
acclamations of joy. Jack was made Knight of the Round Table, as a reward
for his gallant exploits. But he resolved not to live in idleness; so he
begged permission of the king to go in pursuit of the giants; "for," said he,
there are many living among the WVelsh mountains, and they oppress the
people."' When the king heard the brave proposal of Jack he was highly
pleased, for he knew how cruel and bloodthirsty these giants were. He
therefore ordered everything that was proper to be provided, and Jack de-
parted. He traveled on over hills and mountains until he came to an
extensive forest, through which he had to pass. When he had advanced some
distance he heard thie shrieks of a female in distress. He immediately went
towards the spot whence the sounds came, and was horrified at the sight of a
huge giant dragging after him, by the hair of their heads, a knight and' his
lady. This was quite enough to rouse Jack's courage. He alighted from his
horse and tied him to a tree. He then put on his invisible coat and advanced
towards the giant. Jack could not reach higher than his knee, but he drew
his sharp sword, and with a strong blow severed the giant's legs, and he fell
prostrate on the earth, which shook with his fall. Jack then jumped on his
neck and said, "Cruel wretch I I am come to punish you for your crimes."
With one blow of his sword he chopped off his head.
The courteous knight and fair lady rejoiced in their escape, heartily
thanked their deliverer, and requested him to take up his abode in their castle,
Jack visits the Magician in the forest.
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which was not very far distant. Sir
Jack declined the offer, declaring
that he would not rest until he had -
found the monster's dwelling. The .
knight replied, "I entreat you, brave
stranger, not to expose yourself to
further danger. This wretch lived
under yonder mountain, with a
brother more cruel than himself, who
will most certainly destroy you if you
go near." "Fear not," answered n' V
Jack. "When I have performed my
task, I will visit you with pleasure."
Jack then mounted his horse,
having his invisible coat on his arm, .
and rode toward the mountain.
When he got near he dismounted;
and, putting on his coat, he walked ...-
up to the mouth of the cave, where ',
he saw the giant, awaiting his
brother's return. He was a most
hideous monster, with eyes as fierce
as a wild boar; huge, rough cheeks,
and a long beard, the hairs of which
were like wire. Sir Jack walked up to
him and aimed a blow with his sword,
which cut off the giant's nose. He jumped from his seat, yelling hideously;
but on looking around he could see no one, for Jack was invisible. Sir Jack
now jumped upon the giant's seat and pierced him through the back, on which
he gaw. a deep groan and died. Sir Jack then cut off his head, and sent it,
with that of his brother, to good King Arthur.
Sir Jack then went to the castle of the rescued knight, where he was
received with great joy. The good knight assembled all his friends, to give
a grand entertainment to his deliverer, and the castle resounded with music.
But in the midst of the mirth, a messenger informed the knight that Hundel,
a.savage giant, having heard of the death of his -brethren, was coming in great
fury to take revenge. This sad news instantly put a stop to all mirth, and a
thrill of horror ran through the company. Jack, however, nothing daunted,
drew his sword and said, Let him come! I have a rod for him, too." Now,
the castle was surrounded by a moat thirty feet deep, over which went a
drawbridge. Jack ordered the drawbridge to be lowered, and set some men
to saw it nearly through. Then putting on his invisible coat, and taking his
sword, he went against the giant, who said on his approach:
"Fe, fi, fo, fum,
I smell the blood of an Englishman;
Be he alive, or be he dead,
I'll grind his bones to make my bread."
Crash went the bridge and he fell into the moat and was drowned.
"Oh, indeed," cried Jack,
"you are a very fine fel-
"Art thou," said the 4
giant, "the villain who /
killed my kinsmen ? If so,
I will tear thee with my
teeth, and grind thy bones hwe s
to powder." -
"Ah, but you must catch
me first," replied Jack. J
Then, putting on his
shoes of swiftness, he ran
before the giant, who, the
moment he saw Jack run,
pursued him swiftly, mak-
ing the earth shake beneath
his heavy tread.
He then ran over the
drawbridge, and the giant
after him. As soon as he
got to the middle of the
bridge, the weight of his rhey shouted when they saw the giant destroyed.
body snapped it asunder,
and he fell headlong into the moat. Jack now turned round and stood on
the edge of the moat, laughing at and deriding the giant. "You told me,"
said he, that you would grind my bones to powder; when will you begin ?"
The giant foamed with rage, but could not get out.
Jack then ordered a strong rope to be brought, which he threw over the
head of the giant, and, by the help of horses, drew him to the edge of the
moat, and cut off his head.
All the spectators shouted 'when they saw the giant destroyed; and,
returning into the banqueting hall, they lavished their praises on the victorious
conqueror, and renewed their festivities until a late hour.
Sir Jack stayed several days with his worthy host, and then set off in
search of new adventures. He traveled over hill and dale unmolested, until
he came to the foot of a mountain, where he saw a little hut, at the door of
which he knocked. The door was opened by a venerable old man with a
flowing beard and snow white head. On seeing him, Jack bowed respectfully
and asked if he could lodge a poor traveler.
"Yes," replied the hermit, "if you will accept my humble fare."
He entered the hut, and the hermit set before him some bread and fruit.
Whilst he was eating, the hermit said: "I perceive, my son, that you are
the brave Cornishman who has destroyed so many giants; now, at the top of
this mountain is an enchanted castle, kept by a giant named Galligantus, who,
by the help of a vile magician, gets many knights and ladies into his castle,
where he changes them into owls, wolves, vultures, and other beasts. I
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All were Princes and Princesses who had been changed
into animals by
y *' -z-ne==
lament, above all, the hard fate of
the duke's daughter, whom they
seized as she was walking in her -'
father's garden, and brought hither in o
a chariot drawn by two firey dragons, /
and turned her into a deer. Many \
knights have tried to destroy the en- -
chantment, but .without success."
Jack promised that, in the morning,
at the risk of his life, he would break
the enchantment; and, after a sound
sleep, he arose early, put on his in-
visible coat, and got ready for the
attempt. When he had climbed to -
the top of the mountain, he saw two
fiery dragons; but he passed them
without danger, for they could not
see him because of his invisible coat.
n the castle gates he found a
golden trumpet, and under it these
A" Whoever can this trumpet blow, ''' i
Shall cause the giant's overthrow."
As soon as Jack had read this he
seized the trumpet and blew a shrill
blast, which made the gates fly open,
and the \very castle itself tremble.
The giant and the magician now
knew that their wicked course was at
an end, and they stood biting their
thumbs and shaking with fear.
Jack, with his sword of sharpness, Whoever can this trumpet blow,
Jc, hiS swor sharpness, Shall cause the giant's overthrow."
soon killed the giant; and the *
magician was then carried away by a whirlwind; and every knight and
beautiful lady, who had been changed into birds and beasts, returned to their
proper forms, and the castle vanished.
The duke's daughter thanked him on her knees as her deliverer.
The head of the giant Galligantus was sent to King Arthur.
The knights and ladies rested that night at the old man's hermitage, and
next day they set out for the court.
Jack then went up to the king, and gave his majesty an account of all
his fierce battles.
Jack's fame had spread through the whole country; and, at the king's
desire, the duke gave him his daughter in marriage, to the joy of all the king-
dom. After this the king gave him a large estate, on which he and his wife
lived the rest of their days in joy and contentment.
Jack married to the Duke's beautiful daughter.
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