The YELLOW FAIRY BOOK - online childrens book

Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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( Stupid I am not!' thought the man, ' so it must be my good office for which I am not fitted. It is strange, certainly, but no one must be allowed to notice it.' And so he praised the cloth which he did not see, and expressed to them his delight at the beautiful colours and the splendid texture. (Yes, it is quite beau­tiful,' he said to the Emperor.
Everybody in the town was talking of the magnificent cloth.
Now the Emperor wanted to see it himself while it was still on the loom. With a great crowd of select followers, amongst whom were both the worthy statesmen who had already been there be­fore, he went to the cunning impostors, who were now weaving with all their might, but without fibre or thread.
' Is it not splendid ! ' said both the old statesmen who had already been there. ' See, your Majesty, what a texture ! What colours !' And then they pointed to the empty loom, for they believed that the others could see the cloth quite well.
' What!' thought the Emperor, ' I can see nothing ! This is indeed horrible! Am I stupid ? Am I not fit to be Emperor ? That were the most dreadful thing that could happen to me. Oh, it is very beautiful,' he said. ' It has my gracious approval.' And then he nodded pleasantly, and examined the empty loom, for he would not say that he could see nothing.
His whole Court round him looked and looked, and saw no more than the others ; but they said like the Emperor, ' Oh ! it is beauti­ful !' And they advised him to wear these new and magnificent clothes for the first time at the great procession which was soon to take place. ' Splendid ! Lovely ! Most beautiful!' went from mouth to mouth; everyone seemed delighted over them, and the Emperor gave to the impostors the title of Court weavers to the Emperor.
Throughout the whole of the night before the morning on which the procession was to take place, the impostors were up and were working by the light of over sixteen candles. The people could see that they were very busy making the Emperor's new clothes ready. They pretended they were taking the cloth from the loom, cut with huge scissors in the air, sewed with needles without thread, and then said at last, ' Now the clothes are finished! '
The Emperor came himself with his most distinguished knights, and each impostor held up his arm just as if he were holding some­thing, and said, ' See ! here are the breeches! Here is the coat! Here the cloak ! ' and so on.
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