The GREEN Fairy Book - online children's book

Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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left it there as food for the young ravens. They hopped up, satisfied their hunger, and piped: "We'll remember and reward you!"
He was now obliged to trust to his own legs, and after walking a long way he reached a big town. Here he found a great crowd and much commotion in the streets, and a herald rode about announcing: "The king's daughter seeks a husband, but whoever would woo her must first execute a difficult task, and if he does not suc­ceed he must be content to forfeit his life." Many had risked their lives, but in vain. When the youth saw the king's daughter he was so dazzled by her beauty that he forgot all idea of danger, and went to the king to announce himself a suitor.
On this he wasied out to a large lake, and a gold ring was thrown into it before his eyes. The king desired him to dive after it, adding: "If you return without it you will be thrown back into the lake time after time till you are drowned in its depths."
Every one felt sorry for the handsome young fellow and left him alone on the shore. There he stood thinking and wondering what he could do, when all of a sudden he saw three fishes swimming along, and recognized them as the very same whose lives he had saved. The middle fish held a mussel in its mouth, which it laid at the young man's feet, and when he picked it up and opened it there was the golden ring inside.
Full of delight he brought it to the king's daughter, expecting to receive his promised reward. The haughty princess, on hearing that he was not her equal by birth, despised him and exacted the fulfillment of a second task. She went into the garden and with her own hands she strewed ten sacks full of millet all over the grass. "He must pick all that up to-morrow morning before sunrise." she said. "Not a grain must be lost."
The youth sat down in the garden and wondered how it would be possible for him to accomplish such a task, but he could think of no expedient, and sat there sadly ex­pecting to meet his death at daybreak.
But when the first rays of the rising sun fell on the garden he saw the ten sacks, all completely filled, stand­ing there in a row, and not a single grain missing. The ant king, with his thousands and thousands of followers,
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