The GREEN Fairy Book - online children's book

Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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THE CRYSTAL COFFIN.                       289
Now let no one say that a poor tailor can't get on in the world and, indeed, even attain to very high honor. Nothing is required but to set the right way to work, but of course the really important thing is to succeed.
A very bright, active young tailor once set off on his travels, which led him into a wood, and as he did not know the way he soon lost himself. Night came on, and there seemed to be nothing for it but to seek out the best rest­ing-place he could find. He could have made himself quite comfortable with a bed of soft moss, but the fear of wild beasts disturbed his mind, and at last he determined to spend the night in a tree.
He sought out a tall oak tree, climbed up to the top, and felt devoutly thankful that his big smoothing-iron Avas in his pocket, for the wind in the tree-tops was so high that he might easily have been blown away alto­gether.
After passing some hours of the night, not without con­siderable fear and trembling, he noticed a light shining at a little distance, and hoping it might proceed from some house where he could find a better shelter than in the top of the tree, he cautiously descended and went toward the light. It led him to a little hut all woven together of reeds and rushes. He knocked bravely at the door, which opened, and by the light which shone from within he saw an old gray-haired man dressed in a coat made of bright-colored patches. "Who are you and what do you want?" asked the old man roughly.
"I am a poor tailor," replied the youth. "I have been benighted in the forest, and I entreat you to let me take shelter in your hut till morning."
. "Go your way," said the old man in a sulky tone. "I'll have nothing to do with tramps, You must just go, elsewhere,"
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