GRIMM'S FAIRY TALES - online book

130 Fairy Stories Adapted & Arranged for young people

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THE BRAVE LL TLE TAILOR.                9)
violence, that no one will venture near where they live, for fear of losing their lives. Now, to whosoever shall vanquish and destroy these dreadful giants, I will give my only daughter in marriage, and the half of my kingdom as he dowry; and if you will under­take to do this, I will send an esc rt of one hundred knights with you, to assist you in any way you wish."
" Well," thought the tailor, " that is a reward worth trying for especially for such a man as I am; it is an offer not met with every day."
So he replied to the king, "Yes, sire, I will overcome the giants; but the hundred knights will be of no use to me. I, who have slain seven at one blow, am not likely to be afraid of two."
Then the tailor boldly set out on his enterprise, the hundred knights following him; but when they reached the borders of the wood, he told them to remain there till he returned, as he would rather go alone to attack the giants.
They stayed behind gladly, while the bold little tailor rushed into the forest and looked cautiously around.
After a while, he saw the two giants lying fast asleep under a tree, and snoring so loudly that the leaves above them were shaken from the branches and fell to the ground.
The little tailor was not idle; he ran quickly and filled both his pockets full of large stones. Then he climbed up into the tree, and sliding out to the end of a branch under which the sleepers lay, let fall upon the chest of one of the giants one stone after another.
It was a long time before even this could disturb him, but at last he woke, and pushing his companion roughly, exclaimed, " What do you mean by knocking me about like this ?"
"You are dreaming," said the other; "I never touched you." And presently they were both asleep again.
Then the little tailor threw a heavy stone on the other giant, who woke up in a rage and cried, "You are striking me, now; what do you mean by it ?"
" I never struck you," he growled.
They were both so ill-tempered at being disturbed, that they quarrelled till they were tired, and then lay down to sleep again.
As soon as their eyes were closed, the tailor began again at his game, and choosing the largest stone he could find, threw it with all his strength on the chest of the first giant.                 7