GRIMM'S FAIRY TALES - online book

130 Fairy Stories Adapted & Arranged for young people

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golden horse out. But you must be careful to place on the horse the common saddle, made of wool and leather, not the gilded one which hangs near it, or some harm will happen to you." Then the fox stretched out his tail, and the king's son seated himself upon it, and away they went again like the wind.
Everything occurred as the fox had said, and he soon reached the stable where the golden horse stood; but, as he was going to put on the common leather saddle, he thought to himself, "Such a beautiful horse as this ought not to have a common saddle on his back; it is not suitable for him." But no sooner had he touched the golden saddle than the horse began to neigh as loud as he could.
The grooms and stable-boys awoke, seized the young man, and carried him off* to prison. The next morning he was again brought before the justice, and condemned to die. This time, when he appealed to the king, he promised to grant him his life, and to give him the golden horse, if he could bring the beautiful princess from the golden castle.
With a heavy heart the young man started, on what appeared to him a hopeless journey, when, to his good fortune, he again met the faithful fox waiting for him.
"I should now leave you to your fate," said he, "for not follow­ing my directions; but I feel compassion for you, and once more I will help you out of your trouble. To find the golden castle, you must keep straight on, without turning right or left, and you will arrive there about sunset. Late in the evening, the princess, when all is still, will go alone through the garden to the bath; you must conceal yourself, and as she passes spring out upon her, and give her a kiss; then she will follow you, and you can easily carry her away; but on no account allow her to stay to say fare­well to her parents ; if you do so, evil will befall you." Then the fox stretched out his tail, the king's son seated himself upon it, and away they went like the wind.
When he came near the castle, he found everything as the fox had described. He waited till midnight, when every one slept, and then, as he heard the footsteps of the beautiful young princess coming towards the bath, he hid himself till she came near, then he sprung out and gave her a kiss. She was terribly fright­ened, but he talked gently to her, and after a while she promised