ASMUND AND SIGNY 281
of her tree and contrived to throw the clothes on to a table through the open window.
How delighted the witch was when she found the clothes all finished ! The next time Prince King came to see her she gave them to him, and he paid her many compliments on her skilful work, after which he took leave of her in the most friendly manner. But he had scarcely left the house when the witch began to rage as furiously as ever, and never stopped till her brother Iron-head appeared.
When Asmund saw all these wild doings from his tree he felt he could no longer keep silence. He went to Prince Eing and said : ' Do come with me and see the strange things that are happening in the new princess's room.'
The prince was not a little surprised, but he consented to hide himself with Asmund behind the panelling of the room, from where they could see all that went on through a little slit. The witch was raving and roaring as usual, and said to her brother:
' Once I am married to the king's son I shall be better off than now. I shall take care to have all that pack of courtiers put to death, and then I shall send for all my relations to come and live here instead. I fancy the giants will enjoy themselves very much with me and my husband.'
When Prince Eing heard this he fell into such a rage that he ordered the house to be set on fire, and it was burnt to the ground, with the witch and her brother in it.
Asmund then told the prince about the two oak trees and took him to see them. The prince was quite astonished at them and at all their contents, but still more so at the extreme beauty of Signy. He fell in love with her at once, and entreated her to marry him, which, after a time, she consented to do. Asmund, on his side, asked for the hand of Prince Eing's sister, which was gladly