« AnteriorContinuar »
The House that Jack built.
This is the Cock,
That ate the malt,
This is the Farmer
That ate the malt,
This is the Horse and the Hound and the Horn,
That belonged to the farmer
That ate the malt,
He now felt quite revived ; and as often as he grew tired he sought fresh strength from the neverfailing contents of the can.
Well pleased with his quarters, Peter remained with the knights playing at nine-pins; at length he was overcome with sleep.
IN a village of Germany there once lived a goatherd named Peter Klaus, who used to pasture his flock of goats on a high mountain close by. Peter was a very idle man, and never happier than when roaming about with his dog, and half a dozen little boys at his heels. His indolent habits so soured the temper of his wife, that she would scold him for hours together.
At length Peter could not bear such a life any longer. So one morning he kissed his children, took his gun and his wallet, and with his faithful dog set out for a ramble through the wide world. But Peter remembered his flock on the high mountain ; and out of love for the poor dumb creatures, he once more bent his sad steps up the steep
On waking he found himself in the green enclosure where he used to fold his goats at nightfall. He rubbed his eyes, but neither dog nor goats could he perceive. Below him lay his native village, and he hastened down to make inquiries after his lost flock. The people he met on his way to the village were all unknown to him. They all stared at him, and took hold of their chins. At last he did the same, when he found that his beard had grown at least a foot longer than it used to be. Having made his way to his cottage, he found it almost in ruins. A hungry dog lay before it, who growled and showed his teeth. Presently a crowd gathered round the strange old man, and all inquired whom he was seeking. He asked after several of his companions, but he found that they were either dead or had left the village.
When he reached the spot he noticed that one of his finest goats had disappeared. On searching closely he found that Nanny must have made her way through a crack in the wall; and having managed to squeeze through the hole after her, he followed her into a kind of vault, where she was greedily picking up the oats that kept dropping down the roof. Raising his eyes he heard the neighing and trampling of several spirited horses, when he came to the conclusion that the oats must have fallen from their crib. As the goatherd stood wondering how these horses came to be shut up in this solitary mountain, there came a strange-looking man towards him in an old-fashioned dress, who silently motioned him to follow.
Peter went up several steps, when he found himself in a court-yard walled in by high rocks. Here he saw twelve grave knights playing at ninepins on a smooth, cool bowling-green, without exchanging a word. Peter was silently enjoined to lift the ball. With much fear he obeyed the injunction, but by degrees he grew bolder, and at length ventured to drink out of a can that was close to him, containing the most fragrant wine.
At length a spruce young woman, carrying an infant on one arm, and leading a little girl four years of age with the other hand, made her way through the crowd. They were all three as like his wife as two peas. “What was your father's name?” cried he. “ His name was Peter Klaus. It is now twenty years since we sought him, day and night, on the high mountain." The goatherd could restrain his feelings no longer. “I am Peter Klaus,” cried he, “and none other !” And he took his daughter and her baby-boy in his arms. Then they all called out, “Yes, that is Peter Klaus! Welcome, neighbour-welcome home, after your twenty years' absence.” Peter Klaus now lived happily in his native village, with his daughter and grandchildren.
The Sleeping Beauty.
THERE were once a king and queen who had no children, and they were, on this account, very unhappy. One day, however, as the queen was walking moodily by the bank of a clear stream a golden fish peeped its head out of the water, and said, “I know your desire; your wish shall be gratified, and you shall soon have a daughter, and her name shall be Rosebud.” As the fish had said, so it happened, and the queen soon had a little girl, very beautiful indeed to behold.
At the christening of the princess, seven good fairies who dwelt in the king's country were invited to be the princess's godmothers, who all gave gifts to her. But there happened to come to the christening a spiteful old fairy, who, instead of giving her any good gift, said that when the princess was fifteen years of age she should hurt her hand with a spindle, and die of the wound. This cruel sentence filled all the company with sorrow. But at this moment a young fairy who had not yet given the princess a gift stepped forth, and in a kind voice said, "Do not, O king and queen, be in so much grief for your daughter; she shall not die of the wound she is to receive; she shall only fall into a deep sleep, which shall last for a hundred years, at the end of which she shall be awakened by a young prince.”
When the Princess Rosebud was about fifteen years of age she was one day roving through the old rooms of the castle, and at last found her way to a small chamber at the top of a tower. The door was closed, but there was a little golden key in the keyhole. The princess turned it, the door flew open, and there she saw an old woman spinning with a spindle very busily. The princess took the spindle into her hand; but as soon as ever she did so, she ran the point of it into her hand, and instantly she fell into a sound sleep.
The good fairy, who had saved the princess's life, though at the distance of twelve thousand leagues, was instantly at the king's palace. She caused the princess to be carried to the finest room in the palace, and laid on a bed made of rich silk and velvet, and adorned with gold and silver. When the princess fell down asleep, a deep sleep
also seized everybody and everything in the palace ; and immediately a dense wood of trees, bushes, and brambles grew all round the palace. At the end of the hundred years the son of the king who then ruled over the country happened to be hunting near the palace; he asked the people who was the owner of the wood, and of the building he saw inside it. An old man answered that there was hidden in the palace a princess of very great beauty, who was condemned by a fairy to sleep a hundred years; and was then to be awakened by a king's son, who was to be her husband. The young prince listened to this account with surprise, and thinking that he must be the king's son who was to wake the princess, resolved to make his way to the palace. As soon as he had reached the wood he found the trees, the bushes, and the brambles move aside of themselves, and let him pass. He went on toward the palace, which he saw at the end of a long walk, and soon entered it. He came first into a large court, where everything he saw was enough to startle the stoutest heart in the world. All the men and creatures that the fairy had laid asleep were stretched along on the ground, and seemed as if they were dead.
After passing through many courts and rooms he came to a chamber, the walls of which were powdered with golden stars, in which was a very grand bed, with the silken curtains drawn back. In this bed he saw a young lady about sixteen years of age, more beautiful than anything he had ever beheld, lying in a sound sleep. The prince went up close to the bed. His delight and wonder were so great that he could not help giving her a kiss. This at once broke the charm that the fairy had put upon the princess; and she opened her eyes, and cast them on the prince with a tender look, as if she had known him before, or had seen him in her sleep. When the princess awoke, all in the palace were roused from their sleep, and went on with the business they were about when the charm of the fairy fell on them. The wedding took place that very night in the presence of all the court; and the good fairy came and gave her blessing to the bride, who lived happily with her prince.