51 Tales translated to English by Lucy Crane & Illustrated by Walter Crane

Home Main Menu Order Support About Search

Share page  

Previous Contents Next

152                           GRIMM'S FAIRY TALES.
" How can I be full ? There was nothing to pull, Though I looked all about me—ba ! baa ! "
When the tailor heard that he marvelled, and saw at once that his three sons had been sent away without reason.
" Wait a minute," cried he, " you ungrateful creature ! It is not enough merely to drive you away—I will teach you to show your face again among honourable tailors."
So in haste he went and fetched his razor, and seizing the goat he shaved her head as smooth as the palm of his hand. And as the yard-measure was too honourable a weapon, he took the whip and fetched her such a crack that with many a jump and spring she ran away.
The tailor felt very sad as he sat alone in his house, and would willingly have had his sons back again, but no one knew where they had gone.
The eldest son, when he was driven from home, appren­ticed himself to a joiner, and he applied himself diligently to his trade, and when the time came for him to travel his master gave him a little table, nothing much to look at, and i made of common wood ; but it had one great quality. When any one set it down and said, " Table, be covered ! " all at once the good little table had a clean cloth on it, and a plate, and knife, and fork, and dishes with roast and boiled, and a large glass of red wine sparkling so as to cheer the heart. The young apprentice thought he was set up for life, and he went merrily out into the world, and never cared whether an inn were good or bad, or whether he could get anything to eat there or not. When he was hungry, it did not matter where he was, whether in the fields, in the woods, or in a meadow, he set down his table and said, " Be covered !" and there he was pro­vided with everything that heart could wish. At last it occurred to him that he would go back to his father, whose wrath might by this time have subsided, and perhaps because of the wonderful table he might receive him again gladly. It hap­pened that one evening during his journey home he came to an inn that was quite full of guests, who bade him welcome, and asked him to sit down with them and eat, as otherwise he would have found some difficulty in getting anything.