GRIMM'S FAIRY TALES - online book

130 Fairy Stories Adapted & Arranged for young people

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220
THE FORTUNE SEEKERS.
possessed in the knapsack, she hoped he would do the same about the hat; and she knew she could not get rid of him as long as he kept it. She soon knew that secret also, and only waited till he was asleep to take the hat away and throw it into the street.
But he still had his horn, and when he woke and missed the hat, in a great rage, he seized it and blew it with all his strength ; and had he not ceased blowing, the whole town, walls, palace, fortress, and neighbouring villages would have fallen together with a loud crash. As it was, the king and his daughter were crushed beneath the ruins. And when he ceased blowing and looked around, there lay the palace all in a heap, not one stone re­mained upon another. Now there was no one to oppose him any more, and he proclaimed himself king and reigned over the whole kingdom.
There was once a miller who was very poor, but he had a beautiful daughter; and a thought struck him that he would speak about her to the king, and get some situation for her. So he obtained an audience, and told the king that he had a daughter who could spin straw into gold.
" Then," said the king, " that is a quality which pleases me well. If your daughter is, as you say, so very skilful, bring her to the castle to-morrow morning, and I will try what she can do."
The miller, next day, took his daughter to the castle, and as soon as she arrived the king led her into a chamber which was quite full of straw, and placing a spinning-wheel before her, said, " Now set to work at once, for if all this straw is not spun into gold before sunrise, you shall die." Then he locked the door himself, and left her alone.
The poor maiden sat for some time looking at the straw in despair. She had never in her life been taught to spin, and she had not the least idea how to turn straw into gold. Every moment her fear became greater, and at last she began to weep bitterly.
As evening came on, the door opened, and a little man entered who said, " Good evening, young daughter of the miller. Why do you weep so sadly ?"