The PINK FAIRY BOOK - online childrens book

Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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126
PETER BULL1
There once lived in Denmark a peasant and his wife who owned a very good farm, but had no children. They often lamented to each other that they had no one of their own to inherit all the wealth that they possessed. They continued to prosper, and became rich people, but there was no heir to it all.
One year it happened that they owned a pretty little bull-calf, which they called Peter. It was the prettiest little creature they had ever seen — so beautiful and so wise that it understood everything that was said to it, and so gentle and so full of play that both the man and his wife came to be as fond of it as if it had been their own child.
One day the man said to his wife, ' I wonder, now, whether our parish clerk could teach Peter to talk; in that case we could not do better than adopt him as our son, and let him inherit all that we possess.'
' Well, I don't know,' said his wife, ' our clerk is tre­mendously learned, and knows much more than his Paternoster, and I could almost believe that he might be able to teach Peter to talk, for Peter has a wonderfully good head too. You might at least ask him about it.'
Off went the man to the clerk, and asked him whether he thought he could teach a bull-calf that they had to speak, for they wished so much to have it as their heir.
1 From the Danish.
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