THE THREE D0G8.
and is so powerful that it will break iron or steel with its teeth."
The shepherd at last let himself be persuaded and gave the stranger his sheep. In order to test the truth of his statement about the dogs he said at once, "Salt, I am hungry," and before the words were out of his mouth the dog had disappeared, and returned in a few minutes with a large basket full of the most delicious food. Then the youth congratulated himself on the bargain he had made and continued his journey in the best of spirits.
One day he met a carriage and pair, all draped in black; even the horses were covered with black trappings, and the coacnman was clothed in crape from top to toe. Inside the carriage sat a beautiful girl in a black dress crying bitterly. The horses advanced slowly and mournfully with their heads bent on the ground.
"Coachman, what's the meaning of all this grief?" asked the shepherd.
At first the coachman wouldn't say anything, but when the youth pressed him he told him that a huge dragon dwelt in the neighborhood and required yearly the sacrifice of a beautiful maiden. This year the lot had fallen on the king's daughter and the whole country was filled with woe and lamentation in consequence.
The shepherd felt very sorry for the lovely maiden and determined to follow the carriage. In a little it halted at the foot of a high mountain. The girl got out and walked slowly and sadly to meet her terrible fate. The coachman perceived that the shepherd wished to follow her and warned him not to do so if he valued his life; but the shepherd wouldn't listen to his advice. When they had climbed about half-way up the hill they saw a terrible-looking monster with the body of a snake and with huge wings and claws coming toward them, breathing forth flames of fire and preparing to seize its victim. Then the shepherd called, "Pepper, come to the rescue," and the second dog set upon the dragon, and after a fierce struggle bit it so sharply in the neck that the monster rolled over and in a few moments breathed its last. Then the dog ate up the body all except its two front teeth, which the shepherd picked up and put in his pocket.
The princess was quite overcome with terror and joy, and fell fainting at the feet of her deliverer. When she