Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 List of Illustrations
 The buried moon
 White Caroline and Black Carol...
 The seven conquerors of the Queen...
 The serpent prince
 The hind of the wood
 Ivan and the chestnut horse
 The queen of the many-coloured...
 The blue bird
 Bashtchelik (or, Real Steel)
 The friar and the boy
 The green serpent
 Urashima Taro
 The fire bird
 The story of the bird Feng
 Back Matter
 Back Cover

Group Title: Edmund Dulac's fairy-book : fairy tales.
Title: Edmund Dulac's fairy-book
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00086957/00001
 Material Information
Title: Edmund Dulac's fairy-book fairy tales
Physical Description: 174 p., 16 leaves of plates : col. ill. ; 24 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Dulac, Edmund, 1882-1953
Hodder and Stoughton ( Publisher )
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Place of Publication: London
Manufacturer: T. and A. Constable
Publication Date: [19--]
Subject: Fairy tales   ( lcsh )
Fairy tales -- 1920
Bldn -- 1920
Genre: Fairy tales
fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: England -- London
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00086957
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002241400
oclc - 12768453
notis - ALJ2144

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Front Matter
        Front Matter
        Frontispiece 1
        Frontispiece 2
    Title Page
        Title Page 1
        Title Page 2
    Table of Contents
        Table of Contents 1
        Table of Contents 2
        Table of Contents 3
    List of Illustrations
        List of Illustrations 1
        List of Illustrations 2
        List of Illustrations 3
        Page 1
        Page 1a
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
    The buried moon
        Page 7
        Page 7a
        Page 8
        Page 8a
        Page 8b
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
    White Caroline and Black Caroline
        Page 15
        Page 15a
        Page 16
        Page 16a
        Page 16b
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
    The seven conquerors of the Queen of the Mississippi
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 24a
        Page 24b
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
    The serpent prince
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 32a
        Page 32b
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
    The hind of the wood
        Page 45
        Page 45a
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 56a
        Page 56b
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
    Ivan and the chestnut horse
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 64a
        Page 64b
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
    The queen of the many-coloured bedchamber
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
    The blue bird
        Page 81
        Page 81a
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 88a
        Page 88b
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
    Bashtchelik (or, Real Steel)
        Page 95
        Page 95a
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 104a
        Page 104b
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 112a
        Page 112b
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
    The friar and the boy
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 120
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
        Page 128a
        Page 128b
    The green serpent
        Page 129
        Page 129a
        Page 130
        Page 131
        Page 132
        Page 133
        Page 134
        Page 135
        Page 136
        Page 137
        Page 138
        Page 139
        Page 140
        Page 141
        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 144a
        Page 144b
    Urashima Taro
        Page 145
        Page 145a
        Page 146
        Page 147
        Page 148
        Page 149
        Page 150
        Page 151
        Page 152
        Page 152a
        Page 152b
        Page 153
        Page 154
        Page 155
        Page 156
        Page 157
    The fire bird
        Page 158
        Page 159
        Page 160
        Page 160a
        Page 160b
        Page 161
        Page 162
        Page 163
        Page 164
        Page 165
        Page 166
        Page 167
        Page 168
        Page 168a
        Page 168b
        Page 169
        Page 170
    The story of the bird Feng
        Page 171
        Page 171b
        Page 172
        Page 172a
        Page 172b
        Page 173
        Page 174
    Back Matter
        Back Matter 1
        Back Matter 2
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
Full Text




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The daintiest, prettiest little maiden they had
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The daintiest, prettiest little maiden they had ever seen Frontispiece


In her frantic struggles the hood of her cloak fell back from her
dazzling golden hair, and immediately the whole place was
flooded with light 8


And, when he saw White Caroline, he started to play on his organ the
most beautiful airs that it was possible to hear, and the three
little dogs commenced to dance together 16


'Hi! friend! Take the whole castle, with the Queen and all that it
contains, on your shoulders!'. 24



When Grannmia saw her strange lover, she alone remained calm and
courageous. 32

Girofl6e thanked the fairy and went far into the wood; and there,
sure enough, she saw a hut and an old woman sitting outside 56

The chestnut horse seemed to linger in the air at the top of its leap
while that kiss endured 64

The Prince took a carriage drawn by three great frogs with great big
wings. Truitonne came out mysteriously by a little door 88

The Prince, looking out, saw him snatch up the Princess .. and
soar rapidly away 04

The Palace of the Dragon King I112

W W, W- M I W W, W- W W- W W W W W W W W


The Friar, bound fast to the post, squirmed and wriggled, showing
plainly that he would foot it if he could 128


Laideronnette kissed and embraced the good Fairy Protectress 144


Urashima was so enchanted that he could not speak a word 152



There he found the Princess asleep, and saw that her face was the face
he had seen in the portrait. 160

With a scream the Princess rushed forward, and, before her wicked
sister could prevent her, she had upset the cauldron with a crash 168


The wonderful bird, like a fire of many colours come down from heaven,
alighted before the Princess, dropping at her feet the portrait 172

Bar %a N i a r NF Nn a n r M F7 L W_ W




THE old wife sang merrily as she sat in the inglenook stirring the
soup, for she had never felt so sad. Many, many years had come
and gone, leaving the weight of their winters on her shoulders and
the touch of snow on her hair without ever bringing her a little
child. This made her and her dear old husband very sad, for there
were many children outside, playing in the snow. It seemed hard
that not even one among them was their very own. But alas I
there was no hope for such a blessing now. Never would they
see a little fur cap hanging on the corner of the mantelpiece, nor
two little shoes drying by the fire.
The old husband brought in a bundle of wood and set it down.
Then, as he heard the children laughing and clapping their hands
outside, he looked out at the window. There they were, dancing
with glee round a snow man they had made. He smiled as he saw
that it was evidently meant to look like the Mayor of the village,
it was so fat and pompous.
'Look, Marushal' he cried to the old wife. 'Come and see
the snow man they've made.'
As they stood together at the window, they laughed to see what
fun the children got out of it. Suddenly the old man turned to her
with a bright idea.
'Let's go out and see if we can't make a little snow man.'
But Marusha laughed at him. 'What would the neighbours
say? They would poke fun at us; it'd be the joke of the village.
Besides, we're too old to play like children.'
'But only a little one, Marusha; only a teeny-weeny little snow
man,-and I'11 manage it that nobody sees us.



'Well, well,' she said, laughing; 'have your own way, as you
always did, Youshko.'
With this she took the pot from the fire, put on her bonnet, and
they went out together. As they passed the children, they stopped
to play with them a while, for they now felt almost like children
themselves. Then they trudged on through the snow till they came
to a clump of trees, and, behind this, where the snow was nice and
white, and nobody could see them, they set to work to make their
little man.
The old husband insisted that it must be very small, and the
old wife agreed that it should be almost as small as a new-born
babe. Kneeling down in the snow, they fashioned the little body in
next to no time. Now there remained only the head to finish.
Two fat handfuls of snow for the cheeks and face, and a big one
on top for the head. Then they put on a wee dab for the nose and
poked two holes, one on each side, for the eyes.
It was soon done, and they were already standing back looking
at it, and laughing and clapping their hands like children. Then
suddenly they stopped. What had happened? A very strange
thing indeed Out of the two holes they saw looking at them two
wistful blue eyes. Then the face of the little snow man was no
longer white. The cheeks became rounded and smooth and radiant,
and two rosy lips began to smile up at them. A breath of wind
brushed the snow from the head, and it all fell down round the
shoulders in flaxen ringlets escaping from a white fur cap. At the
same time some snow, loosened from the little body, fell down and
took the shape of a pretty white garment. Then, suddenly, before
they could open and shut their mouths, their snow mannikin was
gone, and in his place stood the daintiest, prettiest little maiden
they had ever seen.
They gave each other a look out of the corners of their eyes, and
scratched their heads in wonderment. But it was as true as true.
There stood the little girl, all pink and white before them. She
was really alive, for she ran to them; and, when they stooped down



to lift her up, she put one arm round the old wife's neck and the
other round the old man's, and gave them each a hug and a
They laughed and cried for joy; then, suddenly remembering
how real some dreams can seem, they pinched each other in turn.
Still they were not sure, for the pinches might have been a part of
the dream. So, in fear lest they might wake and spoil the whole
thing, they wrapped the little girl up quickly and hastened back
On the way they met the children, still playing round their
snow man; and the snowballs with which they pelted them in the
back were very real; but there again, the snowballs might have
belonged to the dream. But when they were inside the house, and
saw the inglenook, with the soup in the pot by the fire and the
bundle of wood near by, and everything just as they had left it, they
looked at each other with tears in their eyes and no longer feared
that it was all a dream. In another minute there was a little white
fur cap hanging on the corner of the mantelpiece and two little shoes
drying by the fire, while the old wife took the little girl on her lap
and crooned a lullaby over her.
The old man put his hand on his wife's shoulder and she
looked up.
'Marusha '
'Youshko I'
'At last we have a little girl I We made her out of the snow,
so we will call her Snegorotchka.'
The old wife nodded her head, and then they kissed each other.
When they had all had supper, they went to bed, the old husband
and wife feeling sure that they would wake early in the morning to
find the child still with them. And they were not disappointed.
There she was, sitting up between them, prattling and laughing.
But she had grown bigger, and her hair was now twice as long as at
first. When she called them 'Little Father' and 'Little Mother'
they were so delighted that they felt like dancing as nimbly as they

-W- a L1 L0 U P U W a W MR


had in their young days. But, instead of dancing, they just kissed
each other, and wept for joy.
That day they held a big feast. The old wife was busy all
the morning cooking all kinds of dainties, while the old man went
round the village and collected the fiddlers. All the boys and girls
of the village were invited, and they ate and sang and danced and
had a merry time till daybreak. As they went home, the girls all
talked at once about how much they had enjoyed themselves, but
the boys were very silent;-they were thinking of the beautiful
Snegorotchka with the blue eyes and the golden hair.
Every day after that Snegorotchka played with the other
children, and taught them how to make castles and palaces of snow,
with marble halls and thrones and beautiful fountains. The snow
seemed to let her do whatever she liked with it, and to build itself
up under her tiny fingers as if it knew exactly what shape it was
to take. They were all greatly delighted with the wonderful things
she made; but when she showed them how to dance as the snow-
flakes do, first in a brisk whirl, and then softly and lightly, they
could think of nothing else but Snegorotchka. She was the little
fairy queen of the children, the delight of the older people, and the
very breath of life to old Marusha and Youshko.
And now the winter months moved on. With slow and steady
stride they went from mountain top to mountain top, around the
circle of the sky-line. The earth began to clothe itself in green.
The great trees, holding out their naked arms like huge babies
waiting to be dressed, were getting greener and greener, and last
year's birds sat in their branches singing this year's songs. The
early flowers shed their perfume on the breeze, and now and then a
waft of warm air, straying from its summer haunts, caressed the
cheek and breathed a glowing promise in the ear. The forests and
the fields were stirring. A beautiful spirit brooded over the face
of nature;-spring was trembling on the leash and tugging to be
One afternoon Marusha was sitting in the inglenook stirring

11-i rr 4M W M F N L M W S L W


the soup and singing a mournful song, because she had never felt so
full of joy. The old man Youshko had just brought in a bundle of
wood and laid it on the hearth. It seemed just the same as on that
winter's afternoon when they saw the children dancing round their
snow man; but what made all the difference was Snegorotchka, the
apple of their eye, who now sat by the window, gazing out at the
green grass and the budding trees.
Youshko had been looking at her; he had noticed that her face
was pale and her eyes a shade less blue than usual. He grew
anxious about her.
'Are you not feeling well, Snegorotchka?' he asked.
'No, Little Father,' she replied sadly. 'I miss the white snow,
-oh I so much; the green grass is not half as beautiful. I wish the
snow would come again.'
'Oh yes; the snow will come again,' replied the old man.
'But don't you like the leaves on the trees and the blossoms and
the flowers, my darling?'
'They are not so beautiful as the pure, white snow.' And
Snegorotchka shuddered.
The next day she looked so pale and sad that they were alarmed,
and glanced at one another anxiously.
'What ails the child?' said Marusha.
Youshko shook his head and looked from Snegorotchka to the
fire, and then back again.
'My child,' he said at last, 'why don't you go out and play with
the others ? They are all enjoying themselves among the flowers in
the forest; but I've noticed you never play with them now. Why
is it, my darling?'
'I don't know, Little Father, but my heart seems to turn to
water when the soft warm wind brings the scent of the blossoms.'
'But we will come with you, my child,' said the old man. 'I
will put my arm about you and shield you from the wind. Come,
we will show you all the pretty flowers in the grass, and tell you
their names, and you will just love them,-all of them.'

Mt W M W W W W lff W W W W W W W W W W W


So Marusha took the pot off the fire and then they all went out
together, Youshko with his arm round Snegorotchka to shield her
from the wind. But they had not gone far when the warm perfume
of the flowers was wafted to them on the breeze, and the child
trembled like a leaf. They both comforted her and kissed her, and
then they went on towards the spot where the flowers grew thickly
in the grass. But, as they passed a clump of big trees, a bright ray
of sunlight struck through like a dart and Snegorotchka put her
hand over her eyes and gave a cry of pain.
They stood still and looked at her. For a moment, as she
drooped upon the old man's arm, her eyes met theirs; and on her
upturned face were swiftly running tears which sparkled in the
sunlight as they fell. Then, as they watched her, she grew smaller
and smaller, until, at last, all that was left of Snegorotchka was a
little patch of dew shining on the grass. One tear-drop had fallen
into the cup of a flower. Youshko gathered that flower-very gently
-and handed it to Marusha without a word.
They both understood now. Their darling was just a little girl
made of snow, and she had melted away in the warmth of the




IN my old Granny's days, long, long-oh, so long ago, Carland was
just a collection of bogs. Pools of black water lay in the hollows,
and little green rivulets scurried away here and there like long
lizards trying to escape from their tails, while every tuft that
you trod upon would squirt up at you like anything. Oh it was a
nice place to be in on a dark night, I give you my word.
Now, I've heard my Granny say that a long time before her day
the Moon got trapped and buried in the bog. I'll tell you the tale
as she used to tell it to me.
On some nights the beautiful Moon rose up in the sky and
shone brighter and brighter, and the people blessed her because by
her wonderful light they could find their way home at night through
the treacherous bogs. But on other nights she did not come, and
then it was so dark that the traveller could not find his way; and,
besides, the Evil Things that feared the light-toads and creepy,
crawly things, to say nothing of Bogles and Little Bad People-
came out in the darkness to do all the harm they could, for they
hated the people and were always trying to lead them astray. Many
a poor man going home in the dark had been enticed by these
malevolent things into quicksands and mud pools. When the Moon
was away and the night was black, these vile creatures had their
When the Moon learned about this, she was very grieved, for
she is a sweet, kind body, who spends nights without sleep, so as to
show a light for people going home. She was troubled about it all,
and said to herself, I '11 just go down and see how matters stand.'



So, when the dark end of the month came round, she stepped
down out of the sky, wrapped from head to foot in her black
travelling cloak with the hood drawn over her bright golden hair.
For a moment she stood at the edge of the marshes, looking this
way and that. Everywhere, as far as she could see, was the dismal
bog, with pools of black water, and gnarled, fantastic-looking snags
sticking up here and there amid the dank growth of weeds and
grasses. There was no light save the feeble glimmer of the stars
reflected in the gloomy pools; but, upon the grass where she stood, a
bright ring of moonlight shone from her feet beneath her cloak.
She saw this and drew her garments closer about her. It was
cold, and she was trembling. She feared that vast expanse of bog
and its evil creatures, but she was determined to face the matter out
and see exactly how the thing stood.
Guided by the light that streamed from her feet, she advanced
into the bog. As the summer wind stirs one tussock after another,
so she stepped onward between the slimy ponds and deadly quag-
mires. Now she reached a jet-black pool, and all too late she saw
the stars shining in its depths. Her foot tripped and all she could
do was to snatch at an overhanging branch of a snag as she fell
forward. To this she clung, but, fast as she gripped it, faster still
some tendrils from the bough whipped round her wrists like
manacles and held her there a prisoner. She struggled and
wrenched and tugged with all her might and main, but the tendrils
only tightened and cut into her wrists like steel bands.
As she stood there shivering in the dark and wondering how to
free herself, she heard far away in the bog a voice calling through the
night. It was a wailing cry, dying away in despair. She listened
and listened, and the repeated cry came nearer; then she heard
footsteps-halting, stumbling and slipping. At last, by the dim
light of the stars, she saw a haggard, despairing face with fearful
eyes; and then she knew it was a poor man who had lost his way
and was floundering on to his death. Now he caught sight of a
gleam of light from the captive Moon, and made his uncertain way



In her frantic struggles the hood of her cloak
fell back from her dazzling golden hair, and
immediately the whole place was flooded with
light. Page 9

Bh,, ~"ls~~


towards it, thinking it meant help. As he came nearer and nearer
the pool, the Moon saw that her light was luring him to his death,
and she felt so very sorry for him, and so angry with herself that she
struggled fiercely at the cords that held her. It was all in vain, but,
in her frantic struggles, the hood of her cloak fell back from her
dazzling golden hair, and immediately the whole place was flooded
with light, which fell on muddy pools and quicks and quags,
glinting on the twisted roots and making the whole place as clear
as day.
How glad the wayfarer was to see the light I How pleased he
was to see all the Evil Things of the dark scurrying back into their
holes I He could now find his way, and he made for the edge of the
treacherous marsh with such haste that he had not time to wonder
at the strange thing that had happened. He did not know that the
blessed light that showed him his path to safety shone from the
radiant hair of the Moon, bound fast to a snag and half buried in
the bog. And the Moon herself was so glad he was safe, that she
forgot her own danger and need. But, as she watched him making
good his escape from the terrible dangers of the marshes, she was
overcome by a great longing to follow him. This made her tug and
strain again like a demented creature, until she sank exhausted, but
not free, in the mud at the foot of the snag. As she did so, her head
fell forward on her breast, and the hood of her cloak again covered
her shining hair.
At that moment, just as suddenly as the light had shone out
before, the darkness came down with a swish, and all the vile things
that loved it came out of their hiding-places with a kind of
whispering screech which grew louder and louder as they swarmed
abroad on the marshes. Now they gathered round the poor Moon,
snarling and scratching at her and screaming hateful mockeries at
her. At last they had her in their power-their old foe whose light
they could not endure; the Bright One whose smile of light sent
them scurrying away into their crevices and defeated their fell
W Pi M1i~2


'Hell roast thee I' cried an ugly old witch-thing; 'thou'rt the
meddlesome body that spoils all our brews.'
'Out on thee I' shrieked the bogle-bodies; 'if 'twere not for
thee we'd have the marsh to ourselves.'
And there was a great clamour-as out-of-tune as out-of-tune
could be. All the things of darkness raised their harsh and cracked
voices against the Bright One of the sky. 'Ha, ha and 'Ho, ho I'
and 'He, he mingled with chuckles of fiendish glee, until it
seemed as if the very trickles and gurgles of the bog were joining
in the orgy of hate.
'Burn her with corpse-lights I' yelled the witch.
Ha, ha 1 He, he I' came the chorus of evil creatures.
'Truss her up and stifle her screamed the creeping things.
'Spin webs round her I' And the spiders of the night swarmed all
over her.
'Sting her to death I' said the Scorpion King at the head of his
'Ho, ho! He, he And, as each vile thing had something
to say about it, a horrible, screeching dispute arose, while the
captive Moon crouched shuddering at the foot of the snag and gave
herself up as lost.
The dim grey light of the early dawn found them still hissing
and clawing and screeching at one another as to the best way to
dispose of the captive. Then, when the first rosy ray shot up from
the Sun, they grew afraid. Some scuttled away, but those who
remained hastened to do something-anything that would smother
the light of the Moon. The only thing they could think of now was
to bury her in the mud,-bury her deep. They were all agreed on
this as the quickest way.
So they clutched her with skinny fingers and pushed her down
into the black mud beneath the water at the foot of the snag.
When they had all stamped upon her, the bogle-bodies ran quickly
and fetched a big black stone which they hurled on top of her to
keep her down. Then the old witch called two will-o'-the-wisps from
iPM PP I fLrp W_ W "i W,- P17, Wfl W,- WH P. Wbf ,r; Cp _W fl k B W


the darkest part of the marshes, and, when they came dancing and
glancing above the pools and quicks, she bade them keep watch by
the grave of the Moon, and, if she tried to get out, to sound an
Then the horrid things crept away from the morning light,
chuckling to themselves over the funeral of the Moon, and only
wishing they could bury the Sun in the same way; but that was
a little too much to hope for, and besides, all respectable Horrors
of the Bog ought to be asleep in bed during the Sun's journey
across the sky.
The poor Moon was now buried deep in the black mud, with
a heavy stone on top of her. Surely she could never again thwart
their plans of evil, hatched and nurtured in the foul darkness of the
quags. She was buried deep; they had left no sign; who would
know where to look for her?
Day after day passed by until the time of the New Moon was
eagerly looked for by the good folk who dwelt around the marshes,
for they knew they had no friend like the Moon, whose light enabled
them to find the pathways through the bog-land, and drove away
all the vile things into their dark holes and corners. So they put
lucky pennies in their pouches and straws in their hats, and searched
for the crescent Moon in the sky. But evening twilight brought
no Moon, which was not strange, for she was buried deep in the
The nights were pitch dark, and the Horrors held frolic in the
marshes and swarmed abroad in ever-increasing numbers, so that
no traveller was safe. The poor people were so frightened and
dumbfounded at being forsaken by the friendly Moon, that some of
them went to the old Wise Woman of the Mill and besought her
to find out what was the matter.
The Wise Woman gazed long into her magic mirror, and then
made a brew of herbs, into which she looked just as long, muttering
words that nobody but herself could understand.
'It's very strange,' she said at last; 'but there's nought to say
rn.T1S K ff Ca M Lf


what has become of her. I'll look again later on; meantime if ye
do learn anything, let me know.'
So they went away more mystified than ever, and, as the follow-
ing nights brought no Moon, they could do nothing but stand about
in groups in the streets discussing the strange thing. The dis-
appearance of the Moon was the one topic. By the fireside, at the
work-bench, in the inn and all about, their tongues went nineteen to
the dozen; and no wonder, for who had ever heard of the Moon
being lost, stolen or strayed ?
But it chanced one day that a man from the other side of the
marshes was sitting in the inn, smoking his pipe and listening to the
talk of the other inmates, when all of a sudden he sat bolt upright,
slapped his thigh and cried out, 'I' fegs I Now I mind where that
there Moon be I'
Then he told them how one night he had got lost in the
marshes and was frightened to death; how he went blundering on
in the dark with all the Evil Things after him, and, at last, how
a great bright light burst out of a pool and showed him the way
to go.
When they heard this they all took the shortest cut to the Wise
Woman, and told her the man's story. After a long look in the
mirror and the pot, she wagged her head slowly and said, 'It's all
dark, children. You see, being as there's no Moon to conjure by,
I can't tell ye where she's gone or what's made off with her-which
same I could tell ye fine if she was in her right place. But mebbe,
if ye do what I'm going to tell ye, then ye may hap on her your-
selves. Listen now I Just before the darklings come, each of ye
take a stone in your mouth and a twig of the witch-hazel in your
hands, and go into the marshes without fear. Speak no word, for
fear of your lives, but keep straight on till ye come to a spot where
ye'll see a coffin with a cross and a candle on it. That's where ye'll
find your Moon, I 'm thinking, if ye're lucky.
So the next night as the dark began to fall they all trooped out
into the marshes, each with a stone in his mouth and a twig of the



witch-hazel in his hands. Never a word they spoke, but kept
straight on; and, I'm telling you, there was not one among them
but had the creeps and the starts. They could see nothing around
them but bogs and pools and snags; but strange sighing whispers
brushed past their ears, and cold wet hands sought theirs and tugged
at the hazel twigs. But all at once, while looking everywhere for
the coffin with the cross and the candle, they espied the big, strange
stone, and it looked just like a coffin; while at the head of it was a
black cross formed by the branches of the snag, and on this cross
flickered a tiny light just like a candle.
When they saw these things they all knew that what the Wise
Woman had told them was true: they were not far from their
beloved Moon. But, being mighty feared of Bogles and the other
Evil Things, they all went down on their knees in the mud and said
the Lord's Prayer, once forwards, in keeping with the cross, and
once backwards to keep off the Horrors of the Darkness. All this
they said in their minds, without saying a word aloud, for they
well knew what would happen to them if they neglected the Wise
Woman's advice.
Then they rose up and laid hands on the great stone and heaved
it up. And my Granny says, that as they did it, some of them saw,
just for one tiddy-widdy little waste of a minute, the most beautiful
face in the world gazing up at them with wistful eyes like-like-
I really can't remember how my Granny described them, but it was
either 'pools of gratitude' or 'lakes of love.' At all events, this is
exactly what happened when the stone was rolled right over, and it
was said so quickly that not one of them could describe it after-
wards: 'Thanks, brave folkl I shall never forget your kindness,'
as the Moon stepped up out of the black pool into her place in
the sky.
Then they were all astonished beyond words, for, suddenly, all
around was the silver light, making the safe ways between the bogs
as clear as day. There was a sudden rush of weird things to their
lairs, and then all was still and bright. Looking up, they saw with


delight the full Moon sailing in the sky and smiling down upon
them. She was there to light them home again. She was there
to stampede the Evil Things-the Bogles and the Bad Little People
-back into their vile dens. And, as the people looked around
and wondered, it almost seemed to them that this time she had killed
the Horrors dead-never to come to life again.





Come, come, Caroline,
White, white, child o' mine !
I hate you, HATE yOU,
And, at any rate, you
Are no child o' mine

Come, come, Caroline.
Black, black, child o' mine !
I bore you, adore you,
Will give whatever more you
Want, 0 child o' mine /

ONCE upon a time there was a mother who had two daughters, both
named Caroline. People called one 'White Caroline,' because she
was so beautiful. But her mother could not see it, because the child
was not really her own. The other was called 'Black Caroline' by
the people, because she was so ugly. Black Caroline was the favourite
of her mother, and received everything she could desire.
Now one day it so happened that an old shepherd was passing
by, and with him he had three little lambs; and he smiled on seeing
White Caroline, and he caressed her head, and the little lambs came
close and rubbed themselves against her little white dress. White
Caroline was exceedingly pleased with all this. Now Black Caroline,
standing on the winding stairs, also wanted to see; and, coming to
the door, she half opened it. But as soon as the old shepherd saw
her face, he turned and started on his way, and the three little lambs
bleated and beat their heads together, because Black Caroline was
so ugly;-but she was good all the same I



And their mother, in her heart, could not stand this, so she said:
'Whlite Caroline must die, cost what it will!'
And so she thought and thought during seven days how she
could get rid of White Caroline. Then, one day, she went behind a
hedge and said:
Hedge, Thorn-hedge, give me a dozen deadly thorns, each one
an inch long I'
And the hedge gave her a dozen deadly thorns, each thorn an
inch long. Then their mother returned home, and showed them to
Black Caroline.
'Pay attention, Black Caroline,' she said; 'this evening when
you go to bed you must sleep at the edge, and the inside place must
be for White Caroline; because I am going to conceal all the little
thorns in her pillow; and she will die when she puts her head upon
her pillow, and then you, alone, shall be more than ever the pet child
of your mother I'
And Black Caroline said, 'Very well!'
But that evening, when White Caroline was about to get into
bed, Black Caroline took her by the arm and said:
'White Caroline, I love you very much; and you must not tell
mother; but she is trying to kill you. There are a dozen deadly
thorns in your pillow; go to sleep all the same, but we'll put our
heads at the foot of the bed !'
And White Caroline, full of joy, took Black Caroline in her little
arms and they slept together I'
The following morning they heard a rat-a-tat on the stairs.
'Here I Black Caroline I Are you there?'
It was their mother calling from the bottom of the stairs.
'Yes, my dear little mother, I am here I' said White Caroline.
Their mother was in a terrible rage because White Caroline was
not dead. She at once mounted the stairs to see if Black Caroline
was alive. But even then she could not understand how it was that
White Caroline was not dead, and once again rage overcame her I
Now it happened that one day a musician was passing by their



And, when he saw White Caroline, he started
to play on his organ the most beautiful airs that
it was possible to hear, and the three little dogs
commenced to dance together. Page 17

L i'



'2 TL

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-- ':*~ ~

I B 1~f~iI~~C~s-_---


house: and he had with him three little dogs; and, when he saw
White Caroline, he started to play on his organ the most beautiful
airs that it was possible to hear, and the three little dogs commenced
to dance together. White Caroline was exceedingly pleased I But
Black Caroline, who was on the winding stairs, came down and half
opened the door because she wanted to see also. But, as soon as the
musician saw the face of Black Caroline, he ceased to play, and the
three little dogs hid their heads under a sack because Black Caroline
was so ugly-but she was also very good.
And their mother, in her heart, could not stand that, so she said:
White Caroline must die, cost what it will!'
She thought and thought during seven days how she could rid
herself of White Caroline. At last she went to an old witch, and
bought the most violent poison that could be got.
On arriving home she called Black Caroline and said:
'Pay attention, Black Caroline; when at dinner to-day, do not
eat of the little meat-balls. Say you have a pain in your head;
because I am going to put this poison in the meat, and then White
Caroline will eat it, and she will die; and then you will be more
than ever the pet of your mother I'
And Black Caroline said, Very well/'
But, at dinner time, when White Caroline was about to eat from
her plate, she took her by the arm and said:
'White Caroline, I love you very much, but you must not tell
mother; she wishes your death, and she has put poison in your
meat. Tell her that we will eat our dinner outside the house, so that
the cat may not eat the birds and so that the crows may not eat the
grain. Then you can throw your portion away.
Then White Caroline, full of joy, took Black Caroline in her
little arms and they went out together.
A little while after they heard a rat-a-tat at the garden door.
'Here I Black Caroline Are you there?'
It was their mother calling from the inside of the house.
'Yes, my dear little mother, I am here !' said White Caroline.



And their mother was in a great rage because White Caroline
was not dead. Then she went out to see if Black Caroline was still
alive. And she had still her plate full of meat, and she was shedding
tears of blood, because she had such a bad headache. And their
mother could not understand how it was that White Caroline was
not dead, and she boiled with rage.
And one day it happened that a tradesman was passing the house
with sweets and cakes in his van, and when he saw White Caroline,
he showed her all the sweets and cakes and nuts. White Caroline
was so happy, because the tradesman gave her nuts and sweets for
nothing, just because she was so pretty. But Black Caroline, who
was coming down the winding stairs, came out to see.
As soon as the man saw Black Caroline, he mounted his van
and drove away at full gallop, because she was so ugly-but she
was good all the same.
And her mother could not stand that, so she said:
White Caroline must die, cost what it will!'
Then she went to an old miller and asked him if he could place
the mill against four little sticks, so that whoever touched the mill it
would fall on them and crush them. And the old miller said: 'Yes,
it can be done very well, and the mill will be placed thus in fourteen
days. I will see to it at once.'
Their mother was very pleased, and she showed Black Caroline
how the mill would be placed, and said to her:
'Pay attention, Black Caroline: when you go with the sack of
flour to the mill, you must let it drag and be overcome, before you
arrive near the little sticks that support the mill. White Caroline
must take it all alone. As soon as she touches the little sticks she
will be crushed by the mill, and then you will be more than ever the
pet of your mother I '
AndBlack Caroline said, Very well!'
But the next day, when White Caroline walked near the little
sticks, Black Caroline stopped her and said:
White Caroline, I love you very much, and you must not tell



mother; but she intends that you shall die, and she has caused these
little sticks to be placed like that, so that the mill will fall on you
and crush you. Throw the sack on the sticks-so !'
And White Caroline, full of joy, took Black Caroline in her
little arms, and so they went back. And it was well they did, for
there were five little rats in that sack of flour, and all those five were
killed when the mill fell down.
Then they heard a rat-a-tat, and the voice of their mother
calling: 'Here 1 Black Caroline I Are you there?'
'Yes, little mother, I am here,' answered White Caroline.
And the mother was very cross to find that White Caroline was
not dead. And she ran quickly to the mill to see if Black Caroline
was alive. And, when she came back and found her, she was crying
tears of blood because she ached in every limb and could not walk.
And her mother could not understand how it was that White
Caroline was not dead, and she boiled with rage.
She took Black Caroline home and put her in her little bed.
Then she set out to find White Caroline with intent to kill her;
but White Caroline had gone far away where her mother could not
get at her.
On her journey she came to a great stretch of water and she
could not cross over. But suddenly she saw many arms, as black
as pitch, held out over the water so that they formed a bridge.
White Caroline did not know whether to pass over this bridge or
to go back. She began to cry bitterly; then, plucking up courage,
she made the sign of the cross and ran upon them.
When she came to the middle, the arms gave way, and White
Caroline would have been drowned had she not been held by the
heels of her little wooden shoes. And the water-nymphs and
vampires were all around her.
Then, suddenly, a beautiful woman all in white came running to
her aid. And, though the claws of the Evil Things were now pulling
her down by the heels of her little shoes, the White Woman was in
time to save her just as she was on the point of being drowned.


Then the White Woman turned to the water-nymphs and
vampires :
'Be still, all of you Down to your dens, and say I sent ye I'
Then she led White Caroline to the other side of the water.
And there she looked at her, and kissed her, and loved her as her
own, because she was so beautiful.
This White Woman was the Queen of all the water and the
woods, and was able, in her domain, to grant anything that any one
desired. In her great love for White Caroline, she told her that she
could have whatever she wished.
Would you like to eat some beautiful grapes, White Caroline ?'
said she. Then with her wand she tapped a vine, and behold,
immediately there hung beautiful grapes upon it I
'Would you like a beautiful dress of silk, White Caroline?'
And she tapped again with her little wand, and, immediately, from
a chrysalis hanging from the vine, a lovely dress of sky-blue silk was
unfolded before her, all ready to put on.
And the nymphs and the vampires were more than ever afraid
to come near White Caroline, and she was very glad of that indeed.
'Would you like a voyage?' said the White Woman. And,
immediately, with a wave of her wand, she pointed it at a little
nautilus sailing on the water, and there, in another moment, stood
a beautiful barque with all sail set. And so White Caroline had
everything she could desire, and was very happy.
But one day a King came by, and the sound of his trumpet
rang over the length of the water and through the woods. Quick-
so quick-the White Woman ran to White Caroline and said to her:
'White Caroline, the time has come, and we must part; and
you will never see me again. But, before I go, you can wish for
two things; and whatever you wish, it shall be granted you!'
With that the White Woman vanished.
Then White Caroline wished to have Black Caroline with her.
And immediately there was a rustling among the trees, and Black
Caroline stood beside her I


The two Carolines were now reunited. But White Caroline
was sad because Black Caroline was not as pretty as she herself,
and, remembering the White Woman's promise, she resolved to
wish that they might both be exactly the same.
Then she wished that both of them should be changed into
something exactly alike I
Immediately they began to change. Little white feathers
appeared on their shoulders and spread until they were entirely
covered; and there they stood together, two beautiful white swans I
And ever after they swam up and down on the peaceful water and
no one could tell one from the other. And never again did the
nymphs and the vampires come near to harm them.

V N W B W W W W M E9 W 19 W W M W




ONCE upon a time there was a boy who was ambitious. One day he
said to his mother: 'Give me a muffin and patch my trousers, for
I am going to set out to win the Queen of the Mississippi.'
So the mother gave him a muffin and patched his trousers, and
the boy went off.
He had not gone very far when he came to a mountain path, on
which was a great cross, beneath which stood a man holding a bow
with an arrow fixed on the string.
This man looked down at the boy as if to say, 'What are you
doing here?'
The boy immediately answered his unspoken question by
demanding, 'Hello, friend I What are you doing there?'
'You see that fly on that cross?' said the man, pointing to a
minute speck on one of its arms. 'Wait then, and watch me I I
will put out one of its eyes.'
With this, while the boy watched, he drew his bow to the full,
and let the arrow fly.
It was a wonderful shot, for one of the eyes of the fly fell on the
ground at the foot of the cross.
The boy was so taken with this, that he seemed to grow two
whole years in half a minute. To look at him, you would have
thought he was no longer a boy. He drew himself up proudly to his
full height, and said in the voice of a young man:
'Will you travel with me, my pippy?'
'Pardon ?'


Then it was question and answer between them:
Come, travel with me, my pippy.'
Oh / Whither away ? To old Mandalay?'
'But no; to the far Missississipi,
Where a beautiful Queen holds sway :
And I 'l marry that Queen some day.'
'I am yours And the bouny ?'
Give it a name : I willpay.'
Then the young man took his muffin, and, breaking off a little
bit of it, handed it to the man with the bow and arrow.
'Keep it,' said he; 'it's a pledge of good faith.'
So they journeyed on together. When they had gone some
distance, they came to a high field, and in the middle of this stood
a man stock still, gazing at the sun. As soon as the young man saw
him, he shouted out at the top of his voice: 'Hi! What are you
doing there, my good fellow ?'
I am just waiting for it to get a little more dazzling,' replied the
man, still keeping his eyes fixed on the midday sun.
As soon as the young man heard this he seemed to grow still
more in stature. Indeed, he seemed to be almost a man.
Will you travel with me?' he said.
'Pardon ?'
Then it was question and answer between them:
Come, travel with me, my pipy.'
Oh! Whither away ? To the land of Cathay ?'
'But no; to he far Missississippi,
Where a beautiful Queen hath sway,
Who has stolen my heart away.'
I am yours / And the bounty?'
What you will: it's a pleasure to pay.'
Then the young man took his muffin, and, breaking off a little
bit of it, handed it to the man who gazed at the sun.
'Keep it,' said he; 'it's a pledge of good faith.'
So they journeyed on together.



'Hi! friend! Take the whole castle, with
the Queen and all that it contains, on your
shoulders!' Page 29

.. .. .. 7



(4 ~r~t ";9r

When they had gone some distance further, they saw a man who
had tied his legs together.
'Hello I What are you doing there, my friend?'
'I want to catch that hare over yonder; but unless I tied my
legs together there would be no sport in it.'
Will you travel with me?'
Willyou travel with me, myfippy ?'
'Oh / Whither away ? To Botany Bay ?'
But no; to the far Missississipi,
Where a Queen-tooral-ooral-i-ay-
Is waiting for what I'm to say.'
I am yours / And the bounty ?'
Either here or in Botany Bay !'
Then the boy took his muffin, and, breaking off a little piece,
handed it to him.
'Keep it,' said he 'it's a pledge of good faith.'
So they journeyed on together. But they had travelled scarce
a league when they met a man who was carrying ten great trees in
his arms. And when the boy, who had grown into a young man, saw
this, he was immediately full grown.
'Hi I my friend I What are you doing there?'
'My mother wants some wood,' replied the man, picking a few
branches off the trees and flinging them idly on the roadside, 'so I
am just taking her some.'
Will you travel with me?'
'Pardon ?'
Willyou travel with me, my pippy ?'
Oh / Whither away ? To Rome or Pompeii?'
But no; to the far Mississippi:
There's a Queen of great beauty that way,
And there's no one but Cupid to pay.'
'I am yours / And the bounty ?'
Name yourprice : it shall be as you say.'

G 25

Then the young man took his muffin, and, breaking off a little
bit of it, handed it to the man who carried the trees.
'Keep it,' said he; 'it's a pledge of good faith.'
So they journeyed on together. They were still a long way
from the Mississippi when they came across a man with a mouth
large enough to swallow a river. When the boy, who had become
a young man and was now full grown, set his eyes on him, his beard
and moustache began to sprout.
Will you travel with me?'

'Come, travel with me, my pizpy.
(Sing merry-ton-ton-ta-lay.)
To the land of the far Mississippi
Where the crystalline fountains play ;
There's a Queen who will not say me nay.'
'I am yours / But the bounty ?'
We're picking it up on the way.'

Then the young man took his muffin, and, breaking off a little
bit of it, handed it to the man with the mouth as large as a
'Keep it,' said he; 'it's a pledge of good faith.'
So they journeyed on together. On and on they went until
at last they came to a great hill-top, and there, standing on the
crest of it, they looked down into an immense valley where they saw
a man engaged in eating up the whole earth. As soon as he saw
this gigantic meal going on, the boy, who had become a young man
and was now full grown with moustache and beard, appeared like
a knight errant. One could see that, from the spurs which had
grown upon his heels.
'Hi I What are you doing there?'
'I am so terribly hungry that nothing less than the whole earth
can appease my appetite.'
'Will you travel with me?'

Pa ;T" R L P_ jI ra p r T7_ R PH r MI, RI M Wa WK W EW

'Pardon ?'
'Come, travel with me, my pfijy.'
'Oh Whither? Madras or Bombay ?'
'But no; to thatfar Mississippi,
Which flows from the gates of the day
Where a Queen all in purple array
Waits for me--
I am yours / And the bounty ?'
Wouldn't go in a twenty-ton dray !'
Then the young man took his muffin, and, breaking off a little
bit, handed it to the man who was eating up the earth.
'Keep it,' said he; 'it's a pledge of good faith.'
They were still a long way from their destination when they
came to a beautiful castle of burnished gold, surrounded by a very
deep moat over which was a drawbridge; and on the bridge was
a golden portcullis. As soon as they arrived, their leader rang the
bell. When the door was opened, the travellers entered, and the
hero asked to see the King.
'What do you want with the King?' replied an attendant,
richly attired.
'I have come to ask for the hand of his daughter, the Queen
of the Mississippi,' said the hero.
'That is all very well; but consider well before you start on
such an undertaking; for many have come as you have come and
have lost their lives.'
'That is nothing,' they all replied. 'We are not afraid!'
Then they were led before the Queen, and all were com-
pletely dazzled by her beauty. It was a long time before they
realized that she was speaking to them. At last they understood
her to say:
'Here is my servant. See if you can eat more than he does.'
And the servant sat down in front of a table covered with
dishes crowded with large joints of meat. And behold, he ate the
whole lot up.


'Oh! that is nothing at all,' said the young hero. And,
turning to the man who ate up the earth, he said:
'Sit down there, my friend.' Then turning again to the servant,
he ordered him to bring in the biggest bull they could find.
They obeyed, and set it down in front of the man who ate the
earth. And, in presence of the Queen, he swallowed the bull whole,
head and tail and everything; and it was alive!
But the Queen said, 'You have not won me yet I'
And then she called in a second servant and said:
'Here is my servant. See if you can drink more than he can I'
And immediately the servant took hold of a whole cask of wine,
and in one mouthful drank the whole lot up.
The young hero said, 'That is nothing at all!' Then, turning
to the man with a mouth as big as a river, he added:
'Come here, my friend. Place yourself on your stomach on the
moat, and drink well I'
And the man with the mouth as large as a river placed himself
on his stomach, with his mouth to the water of the great moat
outside, and in one second he had drunk up the whole moat, fishes
and all, absolutely dry.
But the Queen still said they had not won her I
And she beckoned another servant. Then, turning to the
young man, she said: 'See if you can run better than he can.
There,' she said, 'at the top of that high mountain, just near the
sun, lives a hermit. Go and ask him what it is he wishes to say to
me. Then come back and tell me.'
'Oh I that is nothing at all,' said the young hero. And, turning
to the man who ran like a hare, he said: 'Go to the top of the
mountain and come back with the message.'
And the man who ran like a hare was out of sight in a second,
and before they could count three he had returned to the Queen with
the message that the hermit was dead, which the Queen had known
all the time.
And the young man said to the King:


You have submitted us to the test, and we have carried out all
that you wished: we have now gained the Queen, and I am going to
take her.'
Then the King got very angry and called out all his soldiers.
The young man, hearing this, said to the man with the strong
'Hi! friend Take the whole castle, with the Queen and all
that it contains, on your shoulders I'
The man obeyed and they went on their way I
They had not gone a great distance when the man who had
gazed at the sun cried out:
'In the distance I can see that we are being pursued by an
army; they want to take the Queen I'
The King and his army approached rapidly, and demanded the
Then the man of the strong arm killed the King and every one
of his army with a single blow.
Then he departed with the Queen and the castle to the home of
the young man; and as soon as they got there the hero married the
Queen, and, with her and his mother, they lived very happily to a
good old age.





ONCE, a very long time ago, before aeroplanes emulated eagles and
motor cars ran along swifter than the foxes, there lived on the out-
skirts of a great forest an old couple who were poor and childless
and lonely.
Matteo was the name of this worthy pair, and the old man was
called Cola and his wife was known as Sapatella. Now Matteo was
a forester, and, because his duties kept him roaming from early
morn until late in the evening through the deep dark glades of the
forest, his wife, who had to stay at home and mind the cottage and
prepare the meals, and never go out, not even to see the pictures on
Saturday evenings, was very lonely indeed and wished more than
ever that she had a son, so that he could go to the pictures and
tell her all about them when he came home.
But wishes do not make horses or sons, nor even daughters,
and so this poor old woman had to live a very lonely life indeed,
which gave her a great deal of time to think and to envy
The old woman who lived in a shoe,
Who had so many children she didn't know what to do,

who lived about the same time in another part of the country.
One evening, when the days were growing short and the nights
were correspondingly long and chilly, Matteo was on his way back
to the cottage, when he remembered that Sapatella had asked him to
bring home some faggots with him to cook with and to keep them
warm, because, of course, when you are a forester and live in a forest,


you cannot expect to have coal to burn in your grates, like those who
live in towns and villages.
There was plenty of brushwood, and heaps of twigs and fallen
boughs lying about, and, as he had his axe with him, which all good
foresters carry to clear a path for themselves through the dense
undergrowths, it was not long before Matteo had collected a great
bundle of faggots which was just as much as he could carry on his
But Matteo carried home with him on his back more than a
mere bundle of dry boughs and twigs, although he did not know it.
Neither did Sapatella, not until the next morning after Matteo had
gone off to his work, when she went to the wood pile to get some
sticks to put under her pot to boil the nice rabbit which Matteo had
shot for her the day before. She picked up a bundle and was about
to place it on the fire when a tiny serpent, oh, ever so tiny I slithered
and wriggled its way out of the twigs and coiled itself up on the rug.
Being a forester's wife, Sapatella was not the least bit frightened
of serpents or mice or beetles or other dreadful beasts; besides, it
was such a tiny serpent, all yellow as can be; and, when the firelight
danced on it, it shone bright and gleaming like gold.
'Ah me,' said the good woman with a sigh, 'even the serpents
have their young ones, but I have no one.'
Then the serpent uncoiled and stretched itself out towards her
and spoke. All kinds of animals spoke in those days, as you will
notice if you read the story through, though not so frequently but that
the good woman was surprised and startled to hear it.
'You may have me for your child if you will,' it said.
'Keep me warm and feed me well,
And fortune will upon vou dwell.'
Sapatella was, as I have already said, considerably startled to
hear a baby serpent talk like that; but she was a kind-hearted
woman and very, very lonely, and she quickly made up her mind to
adopt the little serpent and bring it up as her own.



When Grannmia saw her strange lover, she
alone remained calm and courageous. Page 39


I*~ip -L~L'l

r ~


The forester, her husband, who was also kind-hearted, agreed to
let her have her own way in the matter, and so the little serpent
found a home and care and affection.
They kept him warm and fed him well,
And fortune did upon them dwell.
From that time on, peace and contentment and prosperity
brightened the little cottage. Everything went smoothly and com-
fortably, though whether the little serpent had really anything to do
with it or not, I cannot say.
Serpents grow up very quickly, and, what with the warmth and
the good food and the affection, the little serpent soon grew to be a
big one, oh, monstrous big! so that when he lay in front of the fire
he took up the whole of the rug, and Sapatella had to scold him in
order to make room so that she could attend to her cooking.
One day when she had nearly tripped over his tail and fallen
with a pot of boiling water in her hands, Sapatella said to it: 'You
are grown too big to be lying about before the fire all day. You
must get up and do something.'
'Very well, mother,' said the serpent-it always called her
mother, and Cola it called father, just as a son would. 'Find me a
wife and I will get married and settle down.'
Sapatella did not very well know how to set about finding a
wife for a serpent, even an adopted one; but she agreed to speak to
Matteo her husband about the matter when he came home that
After supper, accordingly, she put the serpent's request to the
'Our serpent wants to get married, Cola,' she said; 'so you
must find him a wife.'
'Very well,' said Matteo. 'I will hunt through the forest when
I am out, and try and find another serpent for him to mate with.'
'Oh, that will not do at all,' said the serpent, who had been
listening very intently to its adopted parents' conversation, though

W N N g W_ W W W W W W W A W W W W W W W


it seemed to be sleeping peacefully all over the floor in front of the
fire. 'I do not mate with serpents. You must get the King's
daughter for me. To-morrow you must set out to the palace, and
tell the King that I require his daughter in marriage.'
Naturally Matteo did not at all care about his errand; but his
wife entreated him to go, and so on the morrow the good man set
forth, the serpent watching him depart from the cottage door, chant-
ing all the while:
'To the King my message tell,
And fortune will upon you dwell.'
Well, Matteo walked along through the forest on his way to the
King's palace, and the nearer he got to his journey's end the more
difficult and dangerous his errand seemed to grow. He thought
the King would be sure to be very angry, and he might even order
him to be hanged for a knave, or beaten off the palace grounds for
a fool.
But he kept thinking of what the serpent had said, and, as good
fortune dwelling upon us is something we all like to have, the
forester kept on his way and resolved faithfully to carry out his
He came at last to the palace gates, and as, in those days, in that
country, any one who wanted to could walk in and speak to the King,
this simple old fellow passed in with the crowd who were going to
seek help or justice, and in due time he came before the King.
0 great King I' he said, 'a serpent who is my adopted son has
sent me to ask your daughter's hand in marriage.'
The King stared, and then he frowned, and then he stared again.
Kings are accustomed to receiving strange requests; but never
anything so strange as this.
Fortunately for Cola, the King was a good-humoured, easy-going
man, and, thinking that he had to do with some harmless old
lunatic, he only laughed, as did all the courtiers and people who
stood about him.



'Very well,' he said. 'I will grant your request, only your
adopted son must first of all turn all the fruit in my orchard into
gold. Then will I give him my daughter in marriage.'
Matteo thanked the King for his great clemency and kindness in
not having him hanged or beaten out of the palace, and then started
off home again.
'I am well out of that,' he thought to himself; 'but my adopted
son will have to be contented with a wife of less degree. Who ever
heard of turning apples and flowers and cherries into gold ? Why,
they can only make copper and silver of them in Covent Garden.'
But the serpent didn't seem in the least bit concerned when the
forester told him the result of his errand.
'That is a small matter,' it said. 'To-morrow morning you
must go into the city with a basket, and gather up all the fruit-
stones you can find, and take them and scatter them in the orchard.
'Do t/is t ing and do it well,
And fortune will upon you dwell.'

So Matteo went once more to the town and did exactly as the
serpent had told him. Not knowing anything of magic, he did not
in the least expect anything to happen; so you may imagine his
surprise when not only the fruit, but every tree and leaf and bough
in the whole orchard, turned into solid gold, and glittered so in the
sunlight that one could scarcely bear to look at them.
It chanced that the King was walking on the terrace with his
courtiers when Matteo entered the orchard.
'There is that silly old man come back again who wants me to
wed my daughter to a serpent,' he said. 'Is he going to turn my
fruit into gold by stealing it and selling it in the market-place r'
The courtiers laughed at this excellent jest, as courtiers will;
but the next moment they stopped laughing, and each one rubbed
his eyes and ejaculated in astonishment and delight at the marvellous
beauty and value of the King's orchards.
The King himself could say nothing, and he said nothing, until



Matteo came before him and humbly begged his Majesty to fulfil his
promise now that the serpent, his adopted son, had done the task
assigned to him.
The King was in a quandary. He was not greedy or avaricious;
but to have a serpent for a son-in-law was, for a king, clearly
'Softly,' he said. 'You have fulfilled your task, it is true; but
so fair an orchard requires a better setting. Golden trees should not
grow out of common ground and be enclosed by common walls. Let
your adopted son first turn all the ground and the walls into
diamonds and rubies and precious stones, so that I may have
orchards whereof the like is not known in all the world, and then
will I give him my daughter to wife.'
The forester again thanked his Majesty for his great con-
descension and retired, while the King and his courtiers went into
the orchard and picked golden apples and plums and peaches from
golden boughs, and marvelled at the wonderful thing that had been
done before their eyes.
It was in the King's mind that this could be no common or
forest serpent, and he was troubled to think what his position would
be if the second task was performed as readily and thoroughly as the
first had been.
When Matteo reached home and told the serpent what had
befallen him, the serpent shook his tail and seemed about to fly into
a passion.
You see how well kings keep their word,' it said angrily. 'But
it is a small matter after all. Do you go again to the town on the
morrow, and gather all the broken bits of china and glass you can
find. These you must take in a basket, and lay a piece on each wall
and between each tree and bush.
'Do this thing and do it well,
And fortune will upon you dwell.'

So Matteo set out at daybreak, and did exactly as the serpent
Wga W_ W W a W aa WT W

had told him. He had no difficulty in finding plenty of material for
his purpose, and it was still early when he reached the orchard with
a heavy load of broken tea-cups and plates and oddments of basins
and teapots and water-jugs.
Early as it was, it was not too early for the King to be
present. The wonder of this new possession had kept his Majesty
awake nearly all night, and he was impatient until he could get
into the orchard and satisfy himself that it was all really and
actually true.
When he saw Matteo approach and lay down his fragments of
china, he grew thoughtful, for he realized that it was all true enough,
and that the second condition would be likely to be performed. But
he said nothing, and Matteo walked from tree to tree, dropping here a
piece of cup, there a fragment of plate; and, wherever the china fell,
the ground between the trees turned to diamond or sapphire or ruby.
With the walls it was just the same. Every kind of precious stone
known and unknown was to be found in that wonderful orchard,
even to a carbuncle which grew on a courtier's toe in consequence of
his incautious action in putting his foot just where Matteo was
dropping a tiny bit of china.
The King was delighted and depressed at the same time. He
had got orchards surpassing in beauty and value anything that was
known to be in the whole world; also he had to give his daughter in
marriage to a serpent, and the last seemed to the poor King of
greater consideration than the former.
'Tell the serpent, your adopted son, that, although he has
accomplished the task I set him, yet will I not give him my
daughter to -wed unless he also turns my palace into gold,' he said
to Matteo, and again the forester thanked the King for his great
clemency and condescension, and returned to his home.
Again the serpent grew angry and said shrewd things con-
cerning the value of the word of kings, and the trust which is not
to be found in princes-not even German princes.
'But,' said he, 'it is a small matter. Do you go at daybreak



and gather in the forest herbs of this kind and that, and make them
into a broom, and sweep therewith the whole length of the palace
walls, and so shall it be even as the King wishes.
'Go do tkis thing and do it well,
Andfortune shall upon you dwell.'
So Matteo went into the forest and gathered herbs of this kind
and that, and swept the palace well round as the serpent had directed,
and when the King and his courtiers and the servants-even down to
the scullery wench-arose, the whole palace was golden from the front
step of the main entrance to the topmost ridge of the chimney. And
it was not gold plate either: it was all solid gold of the purest kind.
This time the King saw that there was no way of escape when
Matteo asked for the fulfilment of the royal promise, so he called his
daughter to him and told her of the matter.
'My dear Grannmia,' he said, for that was her name, 'for your
sake I have twice broken my royal pledge, and now I greatly fear
you must keep it. It is a small matter-just to marry a serpent, the
adopted son of a poor forester.'
The Princess, who was very young and very dutiful, and
surpassingly fair to look upon, agreed cheerfully, as though marrying
serpents was quite an ordinary everyday duty like laying foundation
stones and receiving bouquets.
So the King told Matteo to send the serpent along and marry
his daughter, and for goodness' sake not to bother him any further
with golden palaces, and jewelled orchards, and carbuncles on his
favourite courtier's big toe.
When the serpent heard this from Matteo, it seemed beside itself
with joy, and there and then set off for the palace. But before it left
the humble cottage in which it had received so much care and affec-
tion, it bade farewell to Sapatella and Matteo, and thanked them very
heartily for all their goodness, finishing up with these words:
] Now my task you have done full well,
Goodfortune shall upon you dwell.'

aK~roaaH~fl~fflaa nfflfflp


And it did; for, from that time till the day they died, both
Sapatella and Matteo were happy and contented and prosperous, and
never ailed or suffered pain or disappointment.
When Grannmia saw her strange lover, she alone remained calm
and courageous-the only one in the palace who did. All the
servants ran shrieking when they saw the great golden monster
entering the doors, and, when it got to the presence-chamber, the
King and Queen fled in one direction and the courtiers in another.
Only the Princess remained, trembling with astonishment, and
awaited the pleasure of the serpent.
Slowly it came gliding towards her, and then, when it was
almost near enough for her to touch it, it reared up-the golden skin
fell apart, and a young and most handsome Prince stood bowing
before her.
Now, of course, everything would have been happy and joyous if
it had not been for the silly old King, who, partly out of anxiety for
his daughter, but chiefly from curiosity, stole back and peeped into
the room just as the Prince emerged from the golden skin which had
disguised him as a serpent.
He did just what you should never do with disenchanted princes:
rushed forward and threw the discarded skin into the fire, where it
flashed and burned like a resinous torch.
At the sound of the crackling the Prince turned, and, when he
saw what had happened, he was furiously angry, more angry, in fact,
than he had been when, as a serpent, he had reflected on the un-
reliability of the promises of kings. Then, with a sad look at the
Princess, he turned to the King and said:
'This act of yours renews t/e spell,
May fortune never with you dwell.'
And, turning himself into a dove, he circled three times round
the Princess and then flew through the window. At least, he would
have flown through the window, only it did not happen to be open.
In consequence he broke the pane and very nearly his own head; but
M M L iMJ P f I M` 1 [i M r Q W M W Wi 39


he got out, and flew straight away over the golden orchard, while
the Princess, who had rushed to the window, stood gazing after him
until he could no longer be seen. Then she turned and gave the
unhappy King her views of his meddlesome prying. Then she burst
into tears and cried until the sun went down, so that the tears
formed a stream and ran down into the fountain-court, and all
the poor little goldfish died because of too much salt in their fresh
But crying does not help any one, so, after all the palace servants
had gone to bed, she gathered up all her treasures and set out to find
her elusive husband, who had come to her as a serpent with a wriggly
tail, and flown away as a dove with a bit of a broken window-pane in
his head.
When she got out of the palace grounds into the woods behind,
she met a fox who was also looking for a dove, or a fowl, or any
other winged thing.
The fox said, 'Good evening, pretty Princess. May I travel
with you for company?'
'Yes, do,' said the Princess. 'I am not used to the woods at
night, and I may not be able to find my way.
So the fox led her through the wood and far away from the
palace until they had gone miles and miles, and the Princess was so
tired that she would not go another step, not even to find a dove
with a bandaged head. So they both lay down and went to sleep.
It was late in the morning when she awoke and heard the birds
singing all around her.
Their song pleased her very much, and the fox, noticing this,
remarked: 'Ah, if you could only understand what they are saying
you would be much more pleased.'
'Oh, do tell me, dear fox,' pleaded the Princess; and, after he
had made her ask him a sufficient number of times, the fox replied:
'Well, they are saying that the King's son, who was turned into
a serpent by his godmother to spite his father, has met with an
accident that now threatens his life. The spell lasted for seven


years, and, on the very day it ended, he was about to marry the
daughter of another king, when her father rashly burnt the skin and
thus caused him to be turned into a dove. In flying from the palace
he has cut his head against a window-pane, and is now at his father's
palace lying so sadly hurt that none of the doctors can do anything
for him.'
The Princess was greatly concerned at hearing this story.
'But listen, dear fox, and hear if the birds say whether there is
any way of curing this poor Prince,' she said.
So the fox listened intently, and by and by he said to the
Princess: 'The blackbirds are saying there is no way, but the wrens
say there is one. Whoever would cure the Prince must obtain the
blood from these very birds and pour it on the head of the Prince,
when he will immediately recover and be as well as he ever was.'
The Princess began to grow hopeful, and begged of the fox to
catch the birds for her so that she might obtain the remedy and
restore the Prince to health. She added a promise of reward for his
assistance, and the fox agreed to help her.
So they waited under the trees until the sun had gone in and
the birds were all asleep in their nests, and then the fox climbed
stealthily into the trees and gathered the birds one after the other,
just like a naughty schoolboy stealing apples from a farmer's orchard.
Having obtained what she required, the Princess set forth
eagerly to carry the remedy to the Prince's palace.
But the fox, who had taken care to keep well out of her reach,
suddenly sat down and began to laugh.
'Why do you laugh, dear fox?' asked the Princess. 'Is it that
you are overjoyed to think that the Prince who is to be my husband
will soon be restored to health? But let us hurry: we may be too
late '
No, it is not that,' said the fox, laughing again. 'It is to think
that your remedy will be of no avail without the other ingredient,
which is the blood of a fox, and as I am not minded to supply it, I
will skip the reward you promised and be off.'


Thereupon he started away, pelting as hard as he could go.
The Princess saw that her only hope was to outwit the fox, and
she immediately thought of a plan to gain her end.
'Dear fox, do not run,' she said; 'that would be a pity now that
the remedy is in our own hands. The King is certain to reward us
lavishly, and surely there are plenty of other foxes among whom we
can find one willing to spare his blood to save the King's son. Let
us go on, then, and trust to our fortune.'
The fox, proud of the fact of being the most artful animal alive,
never thought for one moment that he could be exceeded in cunning
by a simple maiden, so he came back to the Princess, and together
they walked through the forest to the far end where the palace of
the King showed in the near distance.
'That is the place,' said the fox; 'but we haven't got the other
ingredient '
'Oh yes, we have,' said the Princess, and, before the fox could
be any more artful, she hit him on the head with a stout branch she
had picked up, and with such force that he did not in the least object
to the necessary addition to the Prince's medicine being drawn from
his own veins.
Of course the Princess was sorry to have to do this. The fox
had helped her a great deal; and besides, she was a tender-hearted
little thing, and she wept like anything all the while she was com-
pounding the remedy; but princes are of more importance than
foxes, particularly when they are handsome princes who have been
serpents and are wanted to make handsome husbands.
So the Princess took the phial containing the very strange cure
for wounded heads, and proceeded straight to the King's palace.
They were all so disturbed, with the servants running about
distractedly, and the doctors quarrelling with each other, and the
courtiers standing about trying not to look bored, that no one took
the least notice of the Princess; but she was a pushing young lady,
and seeing the palace doors all open, she made her way from room
to room until at last she found the King himself.
1,l7 m3 rm SM, n rrr mm pa K3 FPm MB ''-. PS


'And it please your Majesty,' she said, dropping him a curtsy,
'I have come to save the Prince.'
'But how can you save the Prince when all the great doctors in
my kingdom cannot?' demanded the King.
The birds told me,
The fox helped me,
And I can save your son.
But, if I do, I ask ofyou
To marry me to him when I've done,'
chanted the Princess.
The King was so overcome with grief and anxiety that he was
ready to promise anything to anybody who could help him, so he
gave the Princess the required promise, and, without more ado, she
caused herself to be led into the chamber of the Prince, and poured
the contents of the phial over his wound.
The Prince, who had been so nearly at the point of death that
no one would have believed to see him that there was any life in him
at all, immediately sat up, recovered and well.
He did not recognize the Princess, and when the King, his
father, told him the terms on which she had saved his life, and
presented the maiden to him, he refused.
'For the great service you have rendered me I am grateful
indeed,' he said; 'but I cannot marry you. My heart is already
given to another, and not even for my life will I be false to my
When she heard this the Princess was secretly overjoyed; but
she pretended to be greatly displeased, and she disdainfully rejected
all other offers of reward that were made to her by the King and the
'Tell me who this other is, and I will go to her and get her to
relinquish you in my favour,' she said at length. 'When she learns
what I have done for you, I am sure she will agree that my claim is
greater than hers.'
'It is the Princess Grannmia; but that I am sure she will never

K 43


do,' said the Prince proudly. 'Even if she would, I will not.
What is life without love? and I would rather be a serpent again,
and live in the cottage of a poor forester all my days, than rule this
kingdom without my beloved Princess.'
On hearing this the Princess could no longer keep her secret.
'You must love me indeed, dear Prince,' she said, 'if you do not
recognize me when I come pleading to you to carry out your promise
after saving your life, and marry me as you would have done when
the King, my father, drove you away from me.'
Then the Prince recognized her, and he embraced her so heartily
that the Princess wondered whether he was still a serpent or only
just a strong young man who was very much in love with her, while
the King went out and gave immediate orders to set the bells
a-ringing, and have preparations made on the most lavish scale for
the wedding feast.

44 m a




ONCE upon a time there lived a King and a Queen whose marriage
was as happy as happy could be; they loved each other tenderly,
and, in turn, their subjects loved them; but one thing clouded their
life: and that was that they had no children, no heir. The Queen
thought that the King would love her much more if she had a child.
So she made up her mind to drink of the water of a certain spring.
People came there in thousands from afar to drink of this special
kind of water; and one saw so many that it looked as though all the
world and his wife were there.
Now there were many, many lovely fountains in the wood
where the Queen and other people went to drink at the spring; so
the Queen asked her ladies to lead the others away to these fountains
to amuse themselves, and leave her alone. Then, when they had all
withdrawn, she bewailed in a plaintive voice.
'Am I not unhappy,' she said, 'to have no children I The poor
women, who can badly afford them, have plenty; but here it is now
five years that I have begged heaven to give me one. Oh I am I
to die without ever having a little child? Never I Never I Nev- '
She broke off suddenly, for she saw that the water of the fountain
was troubled. Then a big Crayfish came up and climbed on to the
bank and spoke to her:
'Great Queen, you shall have your desire. Near here is the
grand palace which the fairies built, but it is impossible for you to
find it, because it is surrounded by strong fairy barricades, through
which no mortal eye could ever see, nor mortal footstep pass without



a guide. But I am your humble servant, and, if you will trust your-
self to me, I will take you there.'
The Queen listened without interrupting, for hearing a big
Crayfish talk-and talk so nicely too-was a great surprise to her.
But there was a still greater surprise in store. The Crayfish waved
its feelers in the air, and, before she could count three, it had taken
the form of a beautiful little old woman, with pretty snow-white hair
and a dainty shepherdess costume. She bowed low, and then spoke.
'Well, madam,' said she, 'always look upon me as one of your
friends, for I wish nothing but what would be for your good.'
She was so sweet and charming that the Queen kissed her, and
then by common consent they went off hand in hand through the
wood by a way which surprised the Queen.
It was the way by which the fairies came from the palace to the
fountains. As they went the Queen paused to look at a strange thing
which made her heart beat very fast. At a certain spot the bushes
overhead were full of roses and orange blossoms, entwined and laced
in such a way as to form a cradle covered with leaves. The earth
beneath was a carpet of violets, and, in the giant cedars above,
thousands of little birds, each one a different colour, sang their
songs; and the meaning of their melody was this: that cradle,
woven by fairy fingers, was not there for nothing.
The Queen had not got over this surprise before she saw in the
distance a castle that dazzled her vision, so splendid did it shine.
To tell the truth, the walls and the ceilings were of nothing but
diamonds, and all the benches-even the balcony and terraces-all
were pure diamonds scintillating with flashes beyond the strength
of human eyes to bear. The Queen gave a great cry of joy as she
covered her eyes with her hand. Then, as they came to the gate of
the castle, she asked the little old woman if what she saw were real,
or if she were dreaming?
'Nothing is more real, madam,' the fairy replied. And at that
moment the door of the castle opened and six other fairies came out.
But what fairies I They were the most beautiful ever seen. They


all made a low bow to the Queen, and each one presented her with a
branch flowering with petals of precious stones, to make herself a
bouquet. One bore roses, another tulips, another rare wild-flowers,
and the rest budded with carnations and pomegranates.
'Madam,' they said, 'we could not give you a greater mark of
our friendship for you, than to invite you here. We are pleased to
be able to tell you that you shall have a lovely little Princess whom
you shall call D6siree. Be sure not to forget that, when she is born,
you summon us, because we wish to endow her with all the good
qualities possible. All you will have to do is to take the branches of
the bouquet, and, in naming each flower, think of the fairy of that
name; rest assured that we shall be in your room immediately.'
The Queen, full of joy, threw her arms around each one's neck
in turn, and kissed them all, over and over again, for half an hour.
After that they begged the Queen to go through their palace, and the
diamonds were so bright that the Queen could not keep her eyes
open. Then they took her through their garden. Never was there
such lovely fruit; the apricots were larger than her head, and she
could only eat a quarter of one, and the taste was so lovely that
the Queen resolved never to eat anything else as long as she lived.
She remained in the palace until the evening, and then, having
thanked the fairies for all they had done for her, she returned with
the Fairy of the Fountain.
Now, when the Queen went home, she found that they were all
very upset, and had been searching for her, and could not think where
she had gone. Some had thought that, as she was so beautiful and
young, some stranger had taken her away: which was reasonable, for
she spoke so nicely to every one. But now at last they had found
her, and the King was himself again.
The Queen soon found that what the fairies had said was true.
On a certain day she had a little daughter, and she called her D6siree.
Then, remembering their words, she at once took the bouquet and
named each flower and thought of the fairies one after the other, and
lo 1 immediately they were all there. Their arms were crammed full



of presents. And, after they had kissed the Queen and the little
Princess, they began to distribute the presents. There was beautiful
lace with the history of the world worked into it; then came a lovely
cover all marked in gold representing all the toys that children play
with. The cot was then shown, and the Queen went into raptures
over it: it surely was the nicest ever made; it was of beautiful, rare
wood, with a canopy of blue silk, inwrought with diamonds and
Then the fairies took the little Princess on their knees, and
kissed her and hugged her because she was so good and beautiful.
Each fairy wished her a good quality. One wished her to be wise;
another wished that she might be good; another wished her to be
virtuous; another to be beautiful; another to possess a good fortune;
and the fifth asked for her a long life and good health. Then came
the last, and she wished that Desirde might obtain all that she
herself could ever wish for.
The Queen thanked them a hundred times for all the good
things they had given her little daughter, and, while she was doing
so, all gave a sudden start, for the door opened and a tremendous
Crayfish-so large that it could hardly get through the door-came
in, waving its feelers in the air.
'0 ungrateful Queen said the Crayfish, 'you did not trouble
to ask me here. Is it possible that you have so soon forgotten the
Fairy of the Fountain and the good services I did in taking you to
my sisters. Why, you have invited all of them, and I am the only
one forgotten.'
The Queen was terribly upset at her error, and begged the Fairy
to forgive her. She hastened to assure her that she had not for a
moment forgotten her great obligation to her; and she begged her
not to go back on her friendship, and particularly to be good to the
little Princess.
The others thought that the Fairy of the Fountain would wish
evil to the baby Princess, so they said to her: 'Dear sister, do not
be cross with the Queen; she is good and never would offend you.'


Now, as the Fairy of the Fountain liked to be spoken to nicely,
this softened her a little, and she said:
'Very well, I will not wish her all the harm I was going to; I
will lessen it a little. But take care that she never sees the light of
day until she is fifteen, or she and you will have reason to regret it.
That is all I have to say.' Then, suddenly changing into the little
old woman with the white hair and shepherdess dress, she pirouetted
through the wall, staff in hand. And the cries of the Queen and the
prayers of the good fairies did not matter a bit.
The Queen begged the other fairies to avert the terrible cata-
strophe, and besought them to tell her what to do. They consulted
together, and at last told the Queen that they would build a palace
without any windows or doors, and with an underground passage,
so that the Princess's food could be brought to her. And she was to
be kept there until she was fifteen.
Then, with a wave of their wands, they made a lovely, pure-
white marble castle spring up, and, inside of this, all the chairs were
made of jewels, and even the floors were no different. And here
the little Princess dwelt and grew up a good and beautiful child,
possessing all the good qualities that her fairy godmothers had
wished for her; and from time to time they came to see how she was
getting on. But, of all the fairy godmothers, Tulip was the favourite.
She reminded the Queen never to forget the warning not to allow the
Princess to see the light of day, lest the terrible fate that the Fairy of
the Fountain had laid upon her would surely come to pass. The
Queen, of course, promised never to forget so important a matter.
Now, just as her little daughter was nearing the age of fifteen,
the Queen had her portrait taken and sent to all the great courts of
the world. And so it happened that one Prince, when he saw it, took
it and shut it up in his cabinet and talked to the portrait as though
it was the Princess herself in the flesh.
The courtiers heard him and went and told his father that his
son had gone mad, and that he was shut up in his room, talking all
day long to something or somebody who wasn't there.

L 49


The King immediately sent for his son and told him what the
courtiers had said about him; then he asked him if it was true, and
what had come over him to act like this.
The Prince thought this a favourable opportunity, so he threw
himself at the feet of the King and said:
'You have resolved, sire, to marry me to the Black Princess, but
I love the Princess D6sir6e.'
'You have not seen her,' said the King. 'How can you love
'Neither have I seen the Black Princess, but I have both their
portraits,' replied the Warrior Prince (he was so named because he
had won three great battles), 'but I assure you that I have such a
love for the Princess D6siree, that if you do not withdraw your word
to the Black Princess and allow me to have D6siree, I shall die, and
I shall be very glad to do so if I am unable to have the Princess I love.'
'It is to her portrait, then, that you have been speaking?' said
the King. 'My son, you have made yourself the laughing-stock of
the whole court. They think you are mad.'
You would be as much struck as I am if you saw her portrait,'
replied the Prince firmly.
'Fetch it and show it to me, then,' said the King, equally firmly.
The Prince went, and returned with the Princess's portrait as
requested; and the King was so struck with her beauty that he gave
the Prince leave there and then to marry her, and promised to with-
draw his word from the other Princess.
'My dear Warrior,' said he, I should love to have so beautiful
a Princess in my court.'
The Prince kissed his father's hand and bowed his knee, for he
could not conceal his joy. He begged the King to send a messenger
not only to the Black Princess but also to Princess D6siree; and he
hoped that in regard to his own Princess, he would choose a man
who would prove the most capable; and he must be rich, because
this was a special occasion and called for all the elaborate preparation
it was possible to show in such a diplomatic mission.



The King's choice fell on Prince Becafigue; he was a young
Prince who spoke eloquently, and he possessed five millions of
money. And, beside this, he loved the Warrior Prince very dearly.
When the messenger was taking his leave the Prince said to him:
Do not forget, my dear Becafigue, that my life depends on my
marrying Princess Desirde, whom you are going to see. Do your
best for me and tell the Princess that I love her.' Then he handed
Becafigue his photograph to give the Princess.
The young Prince Becafigue's cortege was so grand, and con-
sisted of so many carriages, that it took them twenty-three hours to
pass; and the whole world turned out to see him enter the gates of
the palace where the King and Queen and Princess D6sirde lived.
The King and Queen saw him coming and were very pleased with
all his grandeur, and commanded that he should be received in a
manner befitting so great a personage.
Becafigue was taken before the King and Queen, and, after
paying his respects to them, told them his message and asked to be
introduced to the Princess D6siree. What was his surprise on being
refused I
'I am very sorry to have to say no to your request, Prince
Becafigue,' said the King, 'but I will tell you why. On the day the
Princess was born a fairy took an aversion to her, and said that a
great misfortune should befall her if she saw the light of day before
she was fifteen years of age.'
'And am I to return without her?' said Becafigue. 'Here is a
portrait of the Warrior Prince.' Then, as he was handing it to the
King, and was about to say something further about it, a voice came
from the photograph, speaking with loving tones:
'Dear D6sir6e, you cannot imagine with what joy I wait for
you: come soon to our court, where your beauty will grace it as no
other court will ever be graced.'
The portrait said nothing more, and the King and the Queen
were so surprised that they asked Becafigue to allow them to show
it to the Princess.



Becafigue readily assented and the Queen took the portrait to
the Princess and showed it to her; and the Princess was delighted.
Although the Queen had told her nothing, the Princess knew that it
meant a great marriage, and was not surprised when her mother
asked: 'Would you be cross if you had to marry this man?'
'Madam,' said the Princess, 'it is not for me to choose; I
shall be pleased to obey whatever you wish.'
'But,' said the Queen, 'if my choice should fall on this par-
ticular Prince, would you consider yourself happy?'
The Princess blushed and turned her eyes away and said
nothing; then the Queen took her in her arms and kissed her, for
she loved the Princess very much and knew that she would soon
lose her, for it wanted only three months to her fifteenth birthday.
When the Prince knew that he could not have his dear Princess
D6sir6e until three months had passed, he became very sad, and could
not sleep at night, until at last his strength gave way and he was
near to death. Doctors were called in, but they could do nothing at
all, and the King was in a dreadful state, for he loved his son very
Now the other messenger, who was sent to the Black Princess
to tell her that the Prince had changed his mind and was going to
marry another, was admitted to her presence and soon explained his
'Mr. Messenger,' she said when he had finished, 'is it possible
that your master does not think I am beautiful or rich enough?
Look out over my broad lands and you will find that they are so
vast that you cannot see where they end; and, as for money, I have
large coffers full to the brim, as any one will tell you.'
'Madam,' replied the messenger, 'I blame my master as much
as a humble subject may. Now if I were sitting on the greatest
throne in the world, I would think it the highest favour from heaven
if you would share it with me.'
'That speech has saved your life,' said the Black Princess, 'you
may go.



When the Fairy of the Fountain heard this she was extremely
angry and she looked in her book to make sure that the Warrior
Prince had really left the Black Princess in favour of the Princess
D6sirde. Yes, it was quite true.
'What!' cried the Fairy of the Fountain, 'this ill-omened
D6sir6e is always in some way upsetting my plans. No I will
not allow it to happen: why should I ?'
Now the messenger Becafigue hurried along to the court of
D6sirde's father and mother, and threw himself at their feet, and told
them that his master was very ill and likely to die if he did not see
the Princess.
The King and Queen agreed that it would be best to go and tell
the Princess about the Prince; so the Queen went and told her
daughter all she knew, not forgetting to mention the evil wish that
had been laid upon her at the time of her birth. But the Princess
asked her mother if it were not possible to defeat this wish by
taking steps to send her to the Prince in a carriage with all the
light shut out.
This was agreed upon and a carriage was made on a subtle plan,
with a separate compartment for the Princess, and mouse-trap blinds
through which food and drink could be inserted without admitting
the light of day. In this she, with her two ladies-in-waiting,
Long-Epine and Girofl6e, set forth, and all the court wept together
with the King and Queen at the going away of their little Princess.
Now Long-Epine did not care for Desirde very much, and, what
is more, she loved the Warrior Prince, having seen his photograph
and heard him speak.
The Queen's last words at parting were:
'Take care of my little daughter, and do not on any account let
her see the light of day. I have made all arrangements with the
Prince that she is to be shut up in a room where she will not be
able to see the light, and every care will be taken.' And, with these
words in their ears, they set off, having promised the Queen that all
would be done as she wished.



Long-Epine told herself she would never let the Princess win
the Warrior Prince, not if she could prevent it; so, at dinner time
that day, when the sun was at its highest, she went as usual to the
carriage with the Princess's food, and, with a big knife, slit the
blind so that the light streamed in. No sooner had she done so than
a strange thing happened. The Princess had been quite alone in the
darkened compartment; then how was it that a white hind leapt out
through the window and sped away into the forest? Long-Epine
watched it, wondering. Then she looked in at the window, but the
compartment was empty. The Princess had gone!
Immediately the Princess, in the form of a white hind, had
disappeared into the forest, her good friend Girofl6e began to chase
after her. As soon as she had gone, Long-Epine took the clothes of
her mistress and dressed herself up in them, and resolved to
impersonate the Princess before the young Prince. Then the
carriage drove on, and in it sat Long-Epine disguised as the
When they arrived she presented herself as D6sir6e; but the
Prince looked at her with horror, for she was not at all like a real
Princess. D6siree's dress, which she wore, came to her knees, and
she had not noticed that her ugly legs showed below the dress.
'This is not the Princess of the portrait,' said the Prince and his
father together. 'You took us for fools, no doubt 1'
The false Princess said that it was a terrible thing to bring her
away from her kingdom to be treated in this way, and to break the
word that they had given. 'How can you do this?' she cried.
At this the Prince and his father were so angry that they did
not reply at all, but simply had the false Princess clapped in irons
and put into prison.
The Prince was so heart-broken at this new trouble that he
resolved to go and shut himself up for the remainder of his life,
alone. At once he summoned the faithful Becafigue, and told him
all. Then he wrote a letter to his father and sent it by Becafigue.
'If I never see my real Princess again,' he wrote, 'I beg of


you that at least you will keep that sham one locked up, and guard
her close.'
Now all this time the Princess was in the wood, running hither
and thither as hinds do. Once or twice she looked at herself in the
water of the fountain, and saw herself so changed that she cried out:
'Is it I ? Am I this hind?' Then at last she got very hungry, and
began to eat berries and herbs, and finally sought a quiet spot and
went to sleep.
The Fairy Tulip had always loved the Princess, and said that
if she left the castle before she was fifteen, she was sure that the
Fairy of the Fountain would relent and do her no harm. But,
as for Girofl6e, she was all this time wandering round looking for
the little Princess. She had walked so much and now felt so tired
that she lay down and went to sleep in the forest. The next morning
the Princess, seeking moss among the ferns, found her. When she
saw that it was Girofl6e, she went up to her and caressed her with
her nozzle, as hinds do, and looked into her eyes until at last
Girofl6e knew full well that it was the Princess turned into a
White Hind. She watched the Hind attentively and saw two large
tears fall from her eyes, and then there was not a single doubt that
it was her dear little Princess; so she put her arms around her neck,
and they wept together.
Then Girofle told the Princess that she would never leave her,
and that she would stay with her until the end.
The Hind understood, and, to show her gratitude, took Girofl6e
into the very deepest part of the forest to find her some luscious fruit
which she had seen there; but on the way Girofl6e called out in
alarm: she would die of fright if she had to spend the night in such
a desolate spot; and then they both began to cry. Their cries were
so pitiful that they touched the heart of the good Fairy Tulip, and
she came to their aid.
Girofl6e begged her to have pity on her young mistress, and to
give her back her natural form, but the Fairy Tulip said that it was
impossible to do that. She said that she would do what she could.



She told Girofl6e that if she went into the forest, she would come to
the hut of an old woman. She was to speak her fair and ask her to
take charge of both of them. Then when night came, the Princess
would change back into her natural form; but as this could only
happen at night in the hut, they must be very careful.
Now Girofl6e thanked the fairy and went, as she had told her,
far into the wood; and there, sure enough, she saw a hut and an old
woman sitting outside on a bench. She went up to her at once.
'My dear mother,' she said, 'will you allow me to have a little
room in your house for myself and my little Hind?'
'Yes, my dear daughter,' she replied, 'I will certainly give you a
room.' And she immediately took them into the hut, and then into
the dearest little room it was possible to find. It contained two little
beds all draped in pure white and beautifully clean.
As the night began to come in, D6sirde changed her form and
became the Princess again; and, seeing this, Girofl6e kissed her and
hugged her with delight. The old woman knocked at the door, and,
without entering, she handed Girofl6e some fresh fruit which they
were very pleased to have to eat; and then they went to bed. But,
as soon as day dawned, D6sir6e took again the shape and form of
a White Hind.
Now Becafigue was in the very same wood, and came to the hut
where the old woman lived. He begged her to give him something
for his master to eat; but the old woman told him that if his master
spent the night in the forest, harm would surely happen to him,
because it was full of wild animals. Why should he not come to her
hut ? Why should he not accept the little room she could offer him ?
He was welcome to it and a good meal besides.
Then Becafigue went back and told the Prince all that the old
woman had said and persuaded him to accept her offer. They put
the Prince into the room next to the Princess, but neither of them
knew anything of this arrangement.
The next morning the Prince called Becafigue, and told him that
he was going into the forest and that he was not to follow him.



Giroflie thanked the fairy and went far
into the wood ; and there, sure enough, she saw
a hut and an old woman sitting outside. Page 56


<7,. i
)-. I,i~
CI;" 1


The Prince had walked and walked for a long time in the forest,
grieving over his loss, when suddenly in the distance he saw a lovely
little White Hind, and gave chase and tried to catch it. The Hind,
who was no other than the little Princess, ran and ran far away until
the Prince, in utter fatigue, gave up the chase; but he resolved to
look again the next day, and to be more careful this time, so as not
to let the Hind get away. Then he went home and told the story
to Becafigue, while the Princess on her side was telling her dear
Girofl6e that a young hunter had chased her and tried to kill her,
but she was so fleet-footed that she got away.
Giroflde told her not to go out any more, but to stay in and read
some books that she would find for her; but, after a little thought,
the Princess found it too awful to be shut up in one little room all
day long, so the next morning she went out again into the forest, and
wandered through the beautiful dells and glades. After going some
distance she saw a young hunter lying down on the mossy bank
asleep, and, approaching him cautiously, she found that she was now
so very close to him that it would be impossible to get away before
he awoke. Then again, he was so handsome, that, instead of running
away, she rubbed her little nose against the young hunter. What
was her surprise to see that it was her dear Prince l for he, at her
caress, opened his eyes, and she at once recognized him. And when
he jumped up and stroked and patted her, she trembled with delight
and raised her beautiful eyes to his in the dumb eloquence of
'Ah! little White Hind,' said he, 'if you only knew how miser-
able I am, and what the cause of it is, you would not envy me I
love you, little Hind, and I will take care of you and look after you.'
And with this he went farther into the forest to find some green
herbs for her.
Now the Hind with a sudden fright found its heels again, and,
just because she wanted so much to stay, she bounded off as fast as
she could go, and never stopped till she reached home, where in great
excitement she told Girofl6e all that had happened.



The Prince, when he returned and found that the Hind had
disappeared, went back also to the hut, and told the old woman that
the Hind had deserted him just when he had been so very kind to
it and had gone in search of food for it. The Warrior Prince then
explained to Becafigue that it was only to see the little Hind that
he had remained so long, and that on the morrow he would depart
and go away. But he did not.
The Princess in the meantime resolved to go a long way into
the forest on the morrow, so as to miss the Prince; but he guessed
her little trick, and so the next day he did the same as she. Then,
suddenly, in the distance he saw the Hind so plainly that he let fly
an arrow to attract its attention. What was his dismay to see the
arrow pierce the flank of the poor little Hind 1 She fell down
immediately on a mossy bank, and swiftly the Prince ran up. He
was so upset at what had happened, that he flew and got leaves and
stopped the bleeding. Then he said:
'Is it not your fault, little flier? You ran away and left me
yesterday, and the same would have happened to-day if this had not
The Hind did not reply at all; what could she say? And
besides, she was in too much pain to do anything but moan.
The Prince caressed her again and again. 'What have I done
to you?' he said. 'I love you, and I cannot bear to think I have
wounded you.'
But her moaning went on. At last the Prince resolved to go to
the hut and get something to carry her on, but before he went he
tied her up with little ribbons, and they were tied in such a manner
that the Princess could not undo them. As she was trying to free
herself she saw Giroflee coming towards her, and made a sign to
her to hasten; and, strange to say, Girofl6e reached her exactly at
the same moment as the Prince with Becafigue.
'I have wounded this little Hind, madam,' said the Prince, 'and
she is mine.'
'Sir,' replied Giroflee, 'this little Hind is well known to me-
LW W, W, Wr, C W 19 W W W W W LW M W M W


and, if you want to see how she recognizes me, you will give her her
The Prince then cut the ribbons in compliance with her request.
Come along, my little Hind,' said Girofl6e; 'kiss me 1'
At this the little Hind threw herself on Girofl6e's neck. 'Nestle
to my heart I Now give me a sigh The Hind obeyed, and the
Prince could not doubt that what Giroflee said was true.
'I give her to you,' said the Prince; 'for I see she loves you.'
Now when Becafigue saw Girofl6e, he told the Prince that he
had seen her in the castle with the Princess D6sir6e, and that he
knew that Giroflie was staying in a part of their own hut. Why
could they not find out if the Princess was staying there also? So
the following night, the Prince having agreed, Becafigue listened
through a chink in the wall of the hut, and what was his surprise
to hear two voices talking I One said:
'Oh, that I might die at once It would be better than to
remain a Hind all the days of my life I What a fate I Only to be
myself to you, and to all others a little White Hind How terrible
never to be able to talk to my Prince 1'
Becafigue put his eye to the chink and this is what he saw.
There was the Princess in a beautiful dress all shining with
gold. In her lovely hair were diamonds, but the tears in her eyes
seemed to sparkle even more brightly. She was beautiful beyond
words, and disconsolate beyond sorrow.
Becafigue nearly cried out with joy at sight of her. He ran off
at once and told the Prince.
'Ah! seigneur,' said he, 'come with me at once and you will
see in the-flesh the maiden you love.'
The Prince ran with him, and when they came on tiptoe to the
chink in the wall, he looked and saw his dear Princess.
Then so great was his joy that he could not be restrained. He
went and knocked at the door, resolving to see his Princess at once.
Giroflde, thinking it was the old woman, opened the door, and
the Prince immediately dashed into the room and threw himself at



the feet of the Princess, and kissed her hand and told her how much
he loved her.
What I my dear little Princess, was it you that I wounded as a
little Hind? What can I do to show my sorrow for so great a
crime ?'
The way in which he spoke put all the doubts from the
Princess's mind. The Prince, knowing all, loved her. She bade
him rise, and then stood with downcast eyes, fearing the worst.
Her fears were justified: in a moment his arms were around her,
and she was sobbing for joy on his breast.
They had stood a moment so, when suddenly the Prince started
and listened. What sound was that? It was the tramp of armed
men; nearer and nearer it came-the threatening sound of an
advancing host. He opened the window, and, on looking out, saw
a great army approaching. They were his own soldiers, going up
against D6siree's father to avenge the insult offered to their Prince.
And the King his father was at their head, in a litter of gold.
When the Warrior Prince saw that his father was there he ran
out to him and threw his arms round his neck and kissed him.
Where have you been, my son ?' said the King. 'Your absence
has caused me great sorrow I'
Then the Prince told him all about Long-Epine, and how the
Princess had been changed into a Hind through her disregard of the
Fairy's warning.
The King was terribly grieved at this news, and turned his eyes
to heaven and clasped his hands. At this moment the Princess
D6sirde came out, mounted on a pure-white horse and looking more
beautiful and lovely than she had ever been. Girofl6e was also with
her as her attendant. The spell had been removed for ever.
At sight of them the old King blessed them, and said that he
would give his kingdom to his son as soon as he was married to the
Princess D6sir6e. The Princess thanked him a thousand times for
his goodness, and then the King ordered the army to return to the
city, for there would be no war, but only rejoicing.


Back into the capital, a mighty procession-an army headed by
its rulers, and victorious without striking a blow. Great was the
joy of all the people to see the Prince and the Princess, and they
showered upon them heaps of presents the like of which was never
The faithful Becafigue begged the Prince to allow him to marry
Giroflie. She was delighted to have such a great offer, and more
than delighted to remain in a land where she would always be with
her dear Princess.
Now the Fairy Tulip, when she heard all that had happened,
resolved, out of the goodness of her heart, to give Girofl6e a splendid
present, so that her husband should not have the advantage of being
the richer. It will astonish you to hear that she gave her four big
gold mines in India; and you know what gold mines in India are
And the marriage feasts lasted several months. Each day was
a greater day than the one before; and every day the adventures of
the little White Hind were sung throughout the country, even as
they are still sung, in boudoir, fireside, and camp, to this very day.

S N L M W_ W W M W M W W M
N 61




IN a far land where they pay people to keep its name a profound
secret, there lived an old man who brought up his three sons just
exactly in the way they should go. He taught them the three R's,
and also showed them what books to read and how to read them.
He was particularly careful about their education, for he had learned
that to know things was to be able to do things.
At last, when he came to die, he gathered his three sons round
his deathbed and cautioned them.
'Do not forget,' he said-' do not forget to come and read the
prayers over my grave.'
'We will not forget, father,' they replied.
The two elder brothers were great big, strapping fellows, but the
youngest one, Ivan, was a mere stripling. As they all stood around
the bed of their dying father, he looked a mere reed compared to his
proud, stout, elder brothers. But his eyes were full of fire and spirit,
and the firm expression of his mouth showed great determination.
And, when the father had breathed his last, and his two elder
brothers wept without restraint, Ivan stood silent, his pale face set
and his eyes full of the bright wonder of tears that would not
On the day that they buried their father, Ivan returned to
the grave in the evening to read prayers over it. He had done
so, and was making his way homeward, when there was a great
clatter of hoofs behind him; then, as he reached the village
square, the horseman pulled up and dismounted quite near to him.



After blowing a loud blast on his silver trumpet-for he was the
King's messenger-he cried in a loud voice:
'All and every man, woman and child, take notice, in the name
of the King. It is the King's will that this proclamation be cried
abroad in every town and village where his subjects dwell. The
King's daughter, Princess Helena the Fair, has caused to be built
for herself a shrine having twelve pillars and twelve rows of beams.
And she sits there upon a high throne till the time when the
bridegroom of her choice rides by. And this is how she shall know
him: with one leap of his steed he reaches the height of the tower,
and, in passing, his lips press those of the Princess as she bends
from her throne. Wherefore the King has ordered this to be
proclaimed throughout the length and breadth of the land, for if
any deems himself able so to reach the lips of the Princess and win
her, let him try. In the name of the King I have said it I'
The blood of the youth of the nation, wherever this proclamation
was issued, took flame and leapt to touch the lips of Princess Helena
the Fair. All wondered to whose lot this lucky fate would fall.
Some said it would be to the most daring, others contended that
it was a matter of the leaping powers of the steed, and yet others
that it depended not only on the steed but on the daring skill of the
rider also.
When the three brothers had listened to the words of the
King's messenger they looked at one another; at least the elder
two did, for it was apparent to them that Ivan, the youngest, was
quite out of the competition, whereas they, two splendid handsome
fellows, were distinctly in it.
'Brothers,' said Ivan at last, 'our first thought must be to
fulfil our father's dying wish. But, if you prefer it, we could take
it in turns to read the prayers over our father's grave. Let it be the
duty of one of us each day to fulfil the duty, morning and evening.'
The elder brothers agreed readily to this, but, when Ivan asked
whose turn it should be on the morrow, they both began to make



The chestnut horse seemed to linger in the air
at the top of its leap while that kiss endured.
Page 69

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'As for me,' said the eldest, 'I must go and order the work of
the farm my father left me, and that will take seven days.'
'And for me,' said the younger, 'I must see to the estate
which is my part of the inheritance, and that also will take seven
'Then,' replied Ivan, 'if I perform the duty for seven days, you
will each do your share afterwards ?'
His brothers agreed still more readily than before. Then they
went their ways, Ivan full of thoughts of his father, and the other
two to train their jumping horses, the one on his farm and the other
on his estate. And both laughed to themselves, for neither knew
the purpose of the other.
How they curled their hair and cleaned their teeth, and
practised 'prunes and prisms' with their mouths close to the
looking-glass !-so that when, at one bound of their magnificent
steeds, they reached the level of the Princess's lips, to aim the kiss
that was to win the prize, they would make a brave show, and a
conquering one. As for their little brother, they each thought he
could go on praying over their father's grave as long as he liked,-it
would be the best thing he could do, and it would not interfere
with their secret plans, so carefully concealed from each other and
from him.
So, for seven days, in their separate districts, they raced about
on their horses by day and dreamed of the greatest leaping feats by
night. And at the end of the seven days the youngest brother
summoned them to keep their agreement, and asked which of them
would read the prayers, morning and evening, for the second seven
'I have done my part,' he said; now it is for you to arrange
between you which one shall continue the sacred duty.'
The two elder brothers looked at each other and then at Ivan.
'As for me,' said one, 'I care little who does it, so long as
I am free to get on with my business, which is more important.'
'And as for me,' said the other, 'I am in no mind to watch



each blade of grass growing on the grave. I cannot really afford
the time, I am so busy. You, Ivan,-you are different: you are
not a man of affairs; how could you spend your time better than
reading prayers over our father's grave ?'
'So be it,' replied Ivan. 'You get back to your work and I
will attend to the sacred duty for another seven days.'
The two elder brothers went their separate ways, and for seven
more days devoted their entire attention to training their horses for
the flying leap at the Princess's lips. How they tore like mad about
the fields 1 How they jumped the hedges and ditches I How they
curled their hair and dyed their moustaches and practised their lips,
not only to 'prunes and prisms,' but to 'peaches of passion' and
'pomegranates,' and 'peripatetic perambulation' and everything they
could think of I In fact, they paid so much attention to the lips which
were to meet those of the Princess at the top of the flying leap, that
they began to neglect their own and their horses' meals. In other
words, they were beginning to show signs of over-training.
At the end of the second seven days Ivan again summoned them
to a family council, and asked them if either of them could now take
up the sacred duty. But no; thinking heavily on horses and lips,
and high jumps and kisses, they spoke lightly of fields to be tilled,
seed to be sown, and all such things that must be done at once.
Their view was-and they got quite friendly over it-that Ivan
should be more than delighted to bear this pleasurable burden of
reading prayers over his father's grave. Indeed, nothing but the
stern call of immediate duty would prevail upon them to relinquish
a task so pleasant.
So be it,' said Ivan; 'I will perform the sacred duty for another
seven days.' But as he spoke, he noted his brothers' curled hair and
dyed moustaches, and gleaned from this, and from the look of sudden
suspicion and jealousy exchanged between them, that they were both
in love with the same fair one. But he kept this to himself, and left
them to their own concerns.
Again, at the end of seven days, when Ivan had read the prayers



devoutly, he summoned his brothers. But they did not come.
Both sent messages saying that they were frightfully busy, and
would he be so good as to go on with the sacred duty until they
could be spared to do their share later on. Ivan accepted their
messages, and went on reading the prayers over the father's grave.
Meanwhile each of his brothers prepared for the great flying
leap; and each said to himself: 'What about Ivan? He would like
to see this great exploit. It might make a man of him. He is
altogether lacking in ambition, and to see a great deed done might
stir him to try to be a great hero himself. But yet-I fear it would
never do. He is so weedy, so insignificant. I feel I should lose by
having a brother like that anywhere about. No; he is far better
reading prayers over our father's grave.'
So each in his own way resolved to go in alone-apart from the
other and apart from Ivan.
The morning of the great day came. The eldest brother had
chosen from his horses a magnificent black one with arched neck and
flowing mane and tail. The second brother had selected a bay
equally splendid. And now, at sunrise, they were, each unknown to
the other, combing their well-curled hair, re-dyeing their moustaches,
and booting and trapping themselves for the wonderful display of
prowess the day was to bring forth. And they did not forget to
make sure that their lips were as fit as they were anxious for the
'high kiss.'
At the appointed time they rode into the lists and drew their
lots, and neither was altogether surprised at seeing his brother among
the host of competitors for the hand of Helena the Fair. Their
surprise came later, when Ivan arrived on the scene.
It so happened in this way: that, towards evening, when his
two brothers had each had their last try to leap up to the Princess's
lips and failed, like every one else, Ivan himself was reading the
prayers over his father's grave. Suddenly a great emotion came
over him, and he stopped in his reading. He was filled with a
longing to look just for once upon the face of Helena the Fair, for



whose favour he knew that the most splendid in the land were
competing with their wonderful steeds. So strong was this longing
that he broke down and, bending over his father's grave, wept
And then a strange thing happened. His father heard him in
his coffin, and shook himself free from the damp earth, and came
out and stood before him.
'Do not weep, Ivan, my son,' he said. And Ivan looked up
and was terrified at the sight of him.
'Nay, my son, do not fear me,' his father went on. 'You have
fulfilled my dying wish, and I will help you in your trouble. You
wish to look upon the face of Helena the Fair, and so it shall be.'
With this he drew himself up, and his aspect was commanding.
Then he called in a loud voice, and, as the echoes of his tones began
to die away, Ivan heard them change into the far-distant beat of a
horse's hoofs. After listening for a while his father called again, and
this time the echo was a horse's neigh and galloping hoofs. It seemed
beyond the hillside, and Ivan looked up and wondered. A third time
his father called, and nearer and nearer came the galloping sound, until
at last, with a thundering snort and a ringing neigh, a beautiful
chestnut horse appeared, circled round them thrice, and then came to
a halt before them, its two forefeet close together and its eyes, ears,
and nostrils shooting flames of fire.
Then came a voice, and Ivan knew it was the voice of the
chestnut horse with the proudly arched neck and flowing mane:
'What is your will ? Command me and I obey!'
The father took Ivan by the hand and led him to the horse's
'Enter here at the right ear,' he said, 'and pass through, and make
your way out at the left ear. By so doing you will be able to
command the horse, and he will do whatever you may wish that a
horse should do.'
So Ivan, nothing doubting, passed in at the right ear of the
chestnut horse and came out at the left; and immediately there was

N 1 9 L19 L19- F11 WW Q W W W -


a wonderful change in him. He was no longer a dreamy youth: he
was at once a man of affairs, and the light of a high ambition shone
in his eyes.
'Mount! Go, win the Princess Helena the Fairl' said his
father, and immediately vanished.
With one spring Ivan was astride the chestnut horse, and, in
another moment, they were speeding like lightning towards the
shrine of Helena the Fair.
The sun was setting, and the two elder brothers, disconsolate,
were about to withdraw from the field, when, startled by the cries of
the people, they saw a steed come galloping on, well ridden, and at
a terrific pace. They turned to look and they marked how Helena
the Fair, disappointed of all others, leaned out to watch the
oncoming horseman. And the whole concourse turned and stood
to await the possible event.
On came the chestnut horse, his nostrils snorting fire, his hoofs
shaking the earth. He neared the shrine, and, to a masterful rein,
rose at a flying leap. The daring rider looked up and the Princess
leaned down, but he could not reach her lips, ready as they
The whole field now stood at gaze as the chestnut horse with its
rider circled round and came up again. And this time, with a
splendid leap, the brave steed bore its rider aloft so that the fragrant
breath of the Princess seemed to meet his nostrils, and yet his lips
did not meet hers.
Again they circled round while all stood still and tense. Again
the chestnut steed rose to the leap, and, this time, the lips of Ivan
met those of the Princess in a long sweet kiss, for the chestnut
horse seemed to linger in the air at the top of its leap while that
kiss endured.
Then, while the Princess looked after, horse and rider reached
the ground and disappeared like lightning.
Instantly the host of onlookers swarmed in.
'Who is he? Where is he?' was the cry on every hand. 'He


kissed her on the lips, and she kissed him. Look at her I Is it
not true?'
It was true, for Princess Helena the Fair, with a lovelight in her
eyes, was leaning down and searching, with all her soul, even for the
very dust spurned from the heels of her lover's horse. But she
could see nothing, and sank back within her shrine, treasuring the
kiss upon her lips; while the people, dissatisfied, but wondering
greatly, melted away. Among them went the splendid brothers,
seeking how they could sell their well-trained horses to advantage,
for they had both been frantically near to the Princess's lips.
Whither had Ivan flown on the chestnut horse? Loosing the
reins-he cared for nothing but the kiss-he let his steed go, and
presently it came to a standstill before his father's grave. There he
dismounted and turned the horse adrift. As if its errand was
completed, it galloped off; a rainbow came down to meet it, and,
closing in, seemed to snatch it up in its folds. Ivan was alone
before his father's grave.
Once more he bowed himself in prayer. Once more his father
appeared before him.
'Thou hast done well, 0 my son,' he said. 'Thou hast fulfilled
my dying wish, but my living wish is yet to be fulfilled. To-morrow
Helena the Fair will summon the people and demand her bridegroom.
Be thou there, but say nothing.'
With this Ivan found himself alone.
On the following day there was a great gathering at the palace,
and, in the midst of it, sat Princess Helena the Fair demanding her
bridegroom-the one who had leapt to her lips and won her from all
others. Her heart and soul and body were his. The half of her
kingdom to come was his. She, herself, was his ;-where was he?
Search was made among the highest in the land, but, fearing
a demand for the repetition of the leap and the kiss, none came
forward. Ivan sat at the back, a humble spectator.
'She is thinking of that leap and that kiss,' said he to himself.
'When she sees me as I am, then let her judge.'


But love, though blind, has eyes. The Princess rose from her
seat and swept a glance over the people. She saw the two handsome
elder brothers and passed them by as so much dirt. Then, by the
light of love, she described, sitting in a corner, where the lights were
low, the hero of the chestnut horse,-the one who had leapt high and
reached her lips in the first sweet kiss of love.
She knew him at once, and, as all looked on in wonder, she
made her way to that dim corner, took him by the hand without a
word, and led him up, past the throne of honour, to an ante-chamber,
where, with the joyous cries of the people ringing in their ears, their
lips met a second time,-at the summit of a leap of joy.
At that moment the King entered, knowing all.
'What is this?' said he.
Then he smiled, for he understood his daughter, and knew that
she had not only chosen her lover, but had won her choice.
'My son,' he added, without waiting for an answer, 'you and
yours will reign after me. Look to it I Now let us go to supper.

p 71

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