GRIMM'S FAIRY TALES - online book

130 Fairy Stories Adapted & Arranged for young people

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23r
THE GOLDEN BIRD.
a wooden cage. Near it stands an empty cage made of gold for show. But be careful while you are taking the golden bird out cf his common cage to put him in the handsome one, or he may do you some harm. "
At these words the fox again stretched out his tail, the king's son seated himself on it, and away they went like the wind.
As soon as they arrived at the castle, the young prince found all as the fox had told him. He passed the sleeping soldiers safely, entered the castle, and walked from room to room till he reached the chamber in which hung the golden bird in its wicker cage. The gilded cage also hung close by, and on the floor lay the three golden apples which had been plucked from the king's garden while his three sons watched
The young man felt inclined to laugh at his wonderful success when he opened the mean-looking wicker cage; but he seized the bird rather carelessly while removing it to the gilded cage, and it uttered such a heart-rending scream that the soldiers awoke. Rush­ing suddenly into the room, they took the king's son off to prison without allowing him to speak.
The next morning he was carried before the judge, who, when he had heard the accusation, passed sentence of death upon him. The matter, however, was laid before the king in whose castle he had found the bird, and he consented to spare the young man's life on condition that he discovered the golden horse which could run faster than the wind, and he promised that if he brought it to the king, he should in addition have the golden bird as a reward. The king's son agreed that he would do this; but when they set him free, he felt very sorrowful, and sighed deeply, as he went on his way.
" Where and how shall I ever be able to find this golden horse ?" he said to himself. At this moment who should he see sitting by the road side but his old friend, the fox.
" Cheer up, friend," he said; " remember you have not heard yet what I can do. Keep up your courage, I will myself tell you how you may find the golden horse, and lead you to it. You must travel for a long way, without turning right or left, till you come to a castle, in one of the stables of which the horse stands. Near the stable many grooms and stable-boys will be lying about; but they will be asleep and snoring, and you can quietly lead the