THE OLIVE FAIRY BOOK - online childrens book

A Collection of Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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4
MADS CHUN
without a struggle, so he took a road that led past the palace and walked on, not noticing whither he went.
In this manner a week slipped by, and at length he found himself crossing a desert with great rocks scattered here and there. In the shadow cast by one of these was seated a holy man or dervish, as he was called, who motioned to the youth to sit beside him.
' Something is troubling you, my son,' said the holy man ; ' tell me what it is, as I may be able to help you.'
' O, my father,' answered the youth, ' I wish to marry the princess of my country ; but the sultan refuses to give her to me unless I can collect all the birds in the world and bring them into his garden. And how can I, or any other man, do that ?'
' Do not despair,' replied the dervish, ' it is not so difficult as it sounds. Two days' journey from here, in the path of the setting sun, there stands a cypress tree, larger than any other cypress that grows upon the earth. Sit down where the shadow is darkest, close to the trunk, and keep very still. By-and-by you will hear a mighty rushing of wings, and all the birds in the world will come and nestle in the branches. Be careful not to make a sound till everything is quiet again, and then say " Madschun ! " At that the birds will be forced to remain where they areónot one can move from its perch ; and you will be able to place them all over your head and arms and body, and in this way you must carry them to the sultan.'
With a glad heart the young man thanked the dervish, and paid such close heed to his directions that, a few days later, a strange figure covered with soft feathers walked into the presence of the sultan. The princess's father was filled with surprise, for never had he seen such a sight before. Oh ! how lovely were those little bodies, and bright frightened eyes! Soon a gentle stirring was heard, and what a multitude of wings, unfolded themselves: blue wings, yellow wings, red
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