The Blue Fairy Book - online childrens book

Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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wherein I have my best furniture ; these are of my silver and gold plate, which is not every day in use ; these open my strong boxes, which hold my money, both gold and silver ; these my caskets of jewels; and this is the master-key to all my apartments. But for this little one here, it is the key of the closet at the end of the great gallery on the ground floor. Open them ail; go into all and every one of them, except that little closet, which I forbid you, and forbid it in such a manner that, if you happen to open it, there's nothing but what you may expect from my just anger and resentment.'
She promised to observe, very exactly, whatever he had ordered; when he, after having embraced her, got into his coach and pro­ceeded on his journey.
Her neighbours and good friends did not stay to be sent for by the new married lady, so great was their impatience to see all the rich furniture of her house, not daring to come while her husband was there, because of his blue beard, which frightened them. They ran through all the rooms, closets, and wardrobes, which were all so fine and rich that they seemed to surpass one another.
After that they went up into the two great rooms, where were the best and richest furniture; they could not sufficiently admire the number and beauty of the tapestry, beds, couches, cabinets, stands, tables, and looking-glasses, in which you might see yourself from head to foot; some of them were framed with glass, others with silver, plain and gilded, the finest and most magnificent ever were seen.
They ceased not to extol and envy the happiness of their friend, who in the meantime in no way diverted herself in looking upon all /I, these rich things, because of the impatience she had to go and open the closet on the ground floor. She was so much pressed by her curiosity that, without considering that it was very uncivil to leave her company, she went down a little back staircase, and with such excessive haste that she had twice or thrice like to have broken her neck.
Being come to the closet-door, she made a stop for some time, thinking upon her husband's orders, and considering what unhappi-ness might attend her if she was disobedient; but the temptation was so strong she could not overcome it. She then took the little key and opened it, trembling, but could not at first see anything plainly, because the windows were shut. After some moments she began to perceive that the floor was all covered over with clotted blood, on which lay the bodies of several dead women, ranged against the
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