The Blue Fairy Book - online childrens book

Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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for gold was still not satisfied, and he had the miller's daughter brought into a yet bigger room full of straw, and said: ' You must spin all this away in the night; but if you succeed this time you shall become my wife.' ' She's only a miller's daughter, it's true,' he thought; ' but I couldn't find a richer wife if I were to search the whole world over.' When the girl was alone the little man appeared for the third time, and said : ' What'll you give me if I spin the straw for you once again ? ' ' I've nothing more to give,' answered the girl. ' Then promise me when you are Queen to give me your first child.' ' Who knows what mayn't happen before that ? ' thought the miller's daughter; and besides, she saw no other way out of it, so she promised the manikin what he demanded, and he set to work once more and spun the straw into gold. When the King came in the morning, and found everything as he had desired, he straightway made her his wife, and the miller's daughter became a queen.
When a year had passed a beautiful son was born to her, and she thought no more of the little man, till all of a sudden one day he stepped into her room and said : ' Now give me what you promised.' The Queen was in a great state, and offered the little man all the riches in her kingdom if he would only leave her the child. But the manikin said: ' No, a living creature is dearer to me than all the treasures in the world.' Then the Queen began to cry and sob so bitterly that the little man was sorry for her, and said: ' I'll give you three days to guess my name, and if you find it out in that time you may keep your child.'
Then the Queen pondered the whole night over all the names she had ever heard, and sent a messenger to scour the land, and to pick up far and near any names he should come across. When the little man arrived on the following day she began with Kasper, Melchior, Belshazzar, and all the other names she knew, in a string, but at each one the manikin called out: ' That's not my name.' The next day she sent to inquire the names of all the people in the neighbourhood, and had a long list of the most uncommon and extraordinary for the little man when he made his appearance. 4 Is your name, perhaps, Sheepshanks, Cruickshanks, Spindleshanks ? ' but he always replied: ' That's not my name.' On the third day the messenger returned and announced: ' I have not been able to find any new names, but as I came upon a high hill round the corner of the wood, where the foxes and hares bid each other good night, I saw a little house, and in front of the
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