THE DEATH OF THE HEN.
and lay there dead. And the cock was so grieved that he cried aloud, and all the beasts came and lamented for the hen ; and six mice built a little waggon, on which to carry the poor hen to her grave, and when it was ready they harnessed themselves to it, and the cock drove. On the way they met the fox.
" Halloa, cock," cried he, " where are you off to?"
" To bury my hen," answered the cock.
"Can I come too?" said the fox.
" Yes, if you follow behind," said the cock.
So the fox followed behind and he was soon joined by the wolf, the bear, the stag, the lion, and all the beasts in the wood. And the procession went on till they came to a brook.
"How shall we get over?" said the cock. Now in the brook there was a straw, and he said,
" I will lay myself across, so that you may pass over on me." But when the six mice had got upon this bridge, the straw slipped and fell into the water and they all tumbled in and were drowned. So they were as badly off as ever, when a coal came up and said he would lay himself across and they might pass over him; but no sooner had he touched the water than he hissed, went out, and was dead. A stone seeing this was touched with pity, and, wishing to help the cock, he laid himself across the stream. And the cock drew the waggon with the dead hen in it safely to the other side, and then began to draw the others who followed behind across too, but it was too much for him, the waggon turned over, and all tumbled into the water one on the top of another, and were drowned.
So the cock was left all alone with the dead hen, and he digged a grave and laid her in it, and he raised a mound above her, and sat himself down and lamented so sore that at last he died. And so they were all dead together.