THE DAUGHTER OF BUK ETTEMSUCII 291
stand so far off;' but they only stared at each other, speechless with surprise.
' What are you staring at? ' asked the new bride.
' At all these wonders,' replied the ladies.
' Do you call these wonders ? ' said she scornfully ; ' I can do that too,' and she jumped straight into the oven, and was burnt up in a moment.
Then they ran to the prince and said : ' Come quickly, your wife is dead! '
' Bury her, then !' returned he. ' But why did she do it? I am sure I said nothing to make her throw herself into the oven.'
Accordingly the burnt woman was buried, but the prince would not go to the funeral as all his thoughts were still with the wife who would not speak to him. The next night he said to her, ' Dear wife, are you afraid that something dreadful will happen if you speak to me? If you still persist in being dumb, I shall be forced to get another wife.' The poor girl longed to speak, but dread of the ogre kept her silent, and the prince did as he had said, and brought a fresh bride into the palace. And when she and her ladies were seated in state, the maiden planted a sharp stake in the ground, and sat herself down comfortably on it, and began to spin.
' What are you staring at so?' said the new bride to her ladies. 'Do you think that is anything wonderful? Why, I can do as much myself!'
' I am sure you can't,' said they, much too surprised to be polite.
Then the maid sprang off the stake and left the room, and instantly the new wife took her place. But the sharp stake ran through, and she was dead in a moment. So they sent to the prince and said, ' Come quickly, and bury your wife.'
' Bury her yourselves,' he answered. 'What did she do it for? It was not by my orders that she impaled herself on the stake.'