The Complete Fairy Tales & Other Stories
By Hans Christian Andersen - online book

Oxford Complete Illustrated Edition all his stories written between 1835 and 1872.

Home Main Menu Order Support About Search

Share page  

Previous Contents Next

There was once a Darning-Needle, who thought herself so fine, she imagined she was an embroidering-needle.
' Take care, and mind you hold me tight ! ' she said to the Fingers which took her out. ' Don't let me fall ! If I fall on the ground I shall certainly never be found again, for I am so fine ! '
' That's as it may be,' said the Fingers ; and they grasped her round the body.
' See, I'm coming with a train ! ' said the Darning-Needle, and she drew a long thread after her, but there was no knot in the thread.
The Fingers pointed the needle just at the cook's slipper, in which the upper leather had burst, and was to be sewn together.
* That's vulgar work,' said the Darning-Needle. ' I shall never get through. I'm breaking ! I'm breaking ! ' And she really broke. ' Did I not say so ? ' said the Darning-Needle ; 'I'm too fine ! '
' Now it's quite useless,' said the Fingers ; but they were obliged to hold her fast, all the same ; for the cook dropped some sealing-wax upon the needle, and pinned her handkerchief together with it in front.
' So, now I'm a breast-pin ! ' said the Darning-Needle. ' I knew very well that I should come to honour : when one is something, one always comes to something ! '
And she laughed inwardly—for no one can ever see out­wardly when a darning-needle laughs. There she sat, as proud as if she was in a state coach, and looked all about her.
' May I be permitted to ask if you are of gold ? ' she inquired of the pin, her neighbour. '' You have a very pretty appearance, and a head of your own, but it is only little. You must see that it grows, for it's not every one that has sealing-wax dropped upon their end.'
And the Darning-Needle drew herself up so proudly that she fell out of the handkerchief right into the sink, which the cook was rinsing out.