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The Story of the Three
and that was too cold for her. And then she went to the porridge of the Little, Small, Wee Bear, and tasted that ; and that was neither too hot nor too cold, but just right ; and she liked it so well that she ate it all up.
Then little Silver-hair sat down in the chair of
the Great, Huge Bear, and that was too hard for her. And then she sat down in the chair of the
Middle Bear, and that was too soft for her. And then she sat down in the chair of the Little,
ONCE upon a time there were Three Bears, who lived together in a house of their own, in a wood. One of them was a Little, Small, Wee Bear; and one was a Middle-sized Bear; and the other was a Great, Huge Bear. They had each a pot for their porridge ; a little pot for the Little, Small, Wee Bear; and a middle-sized pot for the Middle Bear; and a great pot for the Great, Huge Bear. And they had each a chair to sit in ; a little chair for the Little, Small, Wee Bear; and a middle-sized chair for the Middle Bear; and a great chair for the Great, Huge Bear. And they had each a bed to sleep in ; a little bed for the Little, Small, Wee Bear ; a middle-sized bed for the Middle Bear ; and a great bed for the Great, Huge Bear.
One day, after they had made the porridge for their breakfast, and poured it into their porridgepots, they walked out into the wood while the porridge was cooling, that they might not burn their mouths by beginning too soon to eat it. And while they were walking, a little girl named Silver-hair came to the house.
First she looked in at the window, and then she peeped in at the keyhole ; and, seeing nobody in the house, she lifted the latch. The door was not fastened, because the Bears were good Bears, who did nobody any harm, and never suspected that anybody would harm them. So little Silver-hair opened the door, and went in; and well pleased she was when she saw the porridge on the table. If she had been a good little girl, she would have waited till the Bears came home, and then, perhaps, they would have asked her to breakfast ; for they were good Bears,-a little rough or so, as the manner of Bears is, but for all that very good-natured and hospitable.
Small, Wee Bear, and that was neither too hard nor too soft, but just right.' So she seated herself in it, and there she sat till the bottom of the chair came out, and down she came, plump upon the ground.
Then little Silver-hair went upstairs into the bedchamber in which the Three Bears slept. And first she lay down upon the bed of the Great, Huge Bear ; but that was too high at the head for her. And next she lay down upon the bed of the Middle Bear ; and that was too high at the foot for her And then she lay down upon the bed of the Little, Small, Wee Bear; and that was neither too high at the head nor at the foot, so she lay there till she fell fast asleep.
By this time the Three Bears thought their porridge would be cool enough ; so they came home to breakfast. Now little Silver hair had left the
spoon of the Great, Huge Bear, standing in his porridge.
"Somebody has been at my porridge!'
said the Great, Huge Bear, in his great, rough, gruff voice. And when the Middle Bear looked at his, he saw that the spoon was standing in it
“Somebody has been at my porridge !”
So first she tasted the porridge of the Great, Huge Bear, and that was too hot for her. And then she tasted the porridge of the Middle Bear,
said the Middle Bear in his middle voice.
And little Silver-hair had squatted down the soft
cushion of the Middle Bear.
Somebody has been sitting in my chair!”
said the Middle Bear, in his middle voice.
And you know what little Silver-hair had done
to the third chair.
Little Silver-hair had heard in her sleep the great, rough, gruff voice of the Great, Huge Bear; but she was so fast asleep that it was no more to her than the roaring of wind, or the rumbling of thunder. And she had heard the middle voice of the Middle Bear, but it was only as if she had heard some one speaking in a dream. But when she heard the little, small, wee voice of the Little, Small, Wee Bear, it was so sharp, and so shrill, that it awakened her at once. Up she started ; and when she saw the Three Bears on one side of the bed, she tumbled out at the other, and ran to the window. Now the window was open, because the Bears, like good, tidy Bears, as they were, always opened their bed-chamber window when they got up in the morning. Out little Silver-hair jumped ; and away she ran into the wood, and the Three Bears never saw anything more of her.