The RED Fairy Book - online children's book

Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

Home Main Menu Order Support About Search

Share page  

Previous Contents Next

how he could contrive to get her, and yet do nothing that was unkind to her sister. One day when he was walking about and thinking of this, it came into his mind that if he only had his brother, King Pippin, with him, who was so like himself that no one could dis­tinguish the one from the other, he could let him have the elder Princess and half the kingdom; as for himself, he thought, the other half was quite enough. As soon as this thought occurred to him he went outside the palace and called for King Pippin, but no one came. So he called a second time, and a little louder, but no! still no one came. So Minnikin called for the third time, and with all his might, and there stood his brother by his side.
' I told you that you were not to call me unless you were in the utmost need,' he said to Minnikin, ' and there is not even so much as a midge here who can do you any harm !' and with that he gave Minnikin such a blow that he rolled over on the grass.
' Shame on you to strike me ! ' said Minnikin. ' First have I won one Princess and half the kingdom, and then the other Princess and the other half of the kingdom ; and now, when I was just think­ing that I would give you one of the Princesses and one of the halves of the kingdom, do you think you have any reason to give me such a blow '? '
When King Pippin heard that he begged his brother's pardon, and they were reconciled at once and became good friends.
' Now, as you know,' said Minnikin, ' we are so like each other that no one can tell one of us from the other; so just change clothes with me and go up to the palace, and then the Princesses will think that I am coming in, and the one who kisses you first shall be yours, and I will have the other.' For he knew that the elder Princess was the stronger, so he could very well guess how things would go.
King Pippin at once agreed to this. He changed clothes with his brother, and went into the palace. When he entered the Princess's apartments they believed that he was Minnikin, and both of them ran up to him at once; but the elder, who was bigger and stronger, pushed her sister aside, and threw her arms round King Pippin's neck and kissed him; so he got her to wife, and Minnikin the younger sister. It will be easy to understand that two weddings took place, and they were so magnificent that they were heard of and talked about all over seven kingdoms.1
1 From J. Moe.
Previous Contents Next