The Blue Fairy Book - online childrens book

Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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THE MASTER-MAID                               121
thing depends on how it tastes,' and then he went into the third room. There, too, a cauldron was hanging from the wall, boiling, exactly the same as in the two other rooms, and the Prince took pleasure in trying this also, so he dipped a lock of hair in, and it came out so brightly gilded that it shone again. ' Some talk about going from bad to worse,' said the Prince; ' but this is better and better. If he boils gold here, what can he boil in there ? ' He was deter­mined to see, and went through the door into the fourth room. No cauldron was to be seen there, but on a bench someone was seated who was like a king s daughter, but, who­soever she was, she was so beautiful that never in the Prince's life had he seen her equal.
' Oh ! in heaven's name what are you doing here ? ' said she who sat upon the bench.
' I took the place of servant here yesterday,' said the Prince.
' May you soon have a better place, if you have come to serve here ! ' said she.
' Oh ! but I think I have got a kind master,' said the Prince. ' He has not given me hard work to do to-day. When I have cleaned out the stable I shall be done.'
' Yes, but how will you be able to do that ? ' she asked again. ' If you clean it out as other people do, ten pitchforksful will come in for every one you throw out. But I will teach you how to do it: you must turn your pitchfork upside down, and work with the handle, and then all will fly out of its own accord.'
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