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Once upon a time . . . they lived happily ever after . . .    Once upon a time . . . they lived happily ever after . . .

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Fairy-Tales.biz . . . for fairy tales and fables . . .
 

Fairy Tales for ChildrenWelcome to our Fairy Tale website. We have put together a vast collection of traditional stories, tales and fables for you to enjoy. As well as classics such as Alice in Wonderland there are the complete collection of Grimm's fairy tales and Hans Christian Andersen's famous tales. If you are not sure what you are looking for try our random fairy tale section - where you will find a wonderful mix of tales and fables. We hope you enjoy our website and look forward to seeing you time after time.

 
Fairy Tales
 
…….Presently she began again. `I wonder if I shall fall right THROUGH the earth! How funny it'll seem to come out among the people that walk with their heads downward! The Antipathies, I think--' (she was rather glad there WAS no one listening, this time, as it didn't sound at all the right word) `--but I shall have to ask them what the name of the country is, you know. Please, Ma'am, is this New Zealand or Australia?' (and she tried to curtsey as she spoke--fancy CURTSEYING as you're falling through the air! Do you think you could manage it?) `And what an ignorant little girl she'll think me for asking! No, it'll never do to ask: perhaps I shall see it written up somewhere.' ……
Alice In Wonderland ~ Lewis Carroll
 
. . . wishing you a happy ever after . . .
 
 

This weeks featured quotations are from Alice in Wonderland

Alice - I can't explain myself, I'm afraid, Sir, because I'm not myself you see.

The King - Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop.

Alice - I don't believe there's an atom of meaning in it.

The Queen - Sentence first -- verdict afterwards.

The Duchess - Tut, tut, child! Everything's got a moral, if only you can find it.

The Duchess - Take care of the sense, and the sounds will take care of themselves.

The Queen - Now, I give you fair warning, either you or your head must be off, and that in about half no time! Take your choice!

Alice - If I had a world of my own, everything would be nonsense. Nothing would be what it is, because everything would be what it isn't. And contrary wise, what is, it wouldn't be. And what it wouldn't be, it would. You see?

The Hatter - Twinkle, twinkle, little bat! How I wonder what you're at.


This weeks featured traditional fairy tale is:

The Bell

IN the narrow streets of a large town people often heard
in the evening, when the sun was setting, and his last rays
gave a golden tint to the chimney-pots, a strange noise which
resembled the sound of a church bell; it only lasted an
instant, for it was lost in the continual roar of traffic and
hum of voices which rose from the town. 'The evening bell is
ringing,' people used to say; 'the sun is setting!' Those who
walked outside the town, where the houses were less crowded
and interspersed by gardens and little fields, saw the evening
sky much better, and heard the sound of the bell much more
clearly. It seemed as though the sound came from a church,
deep in the calm, fragrant wood, and thither people looked
with devout feelings.

A considerable time elapsed: one said to the other, 'I
really wonder if there is a church out in the wood. The bell
has indeed a strange sweet sound! Shall we go there and see
what the cause of it is?' The rich drove, the poor walked, but
the way seemed to them extraordinarily long, and when they
arrived at a number of willow trees on the border of the wood
they sat down, looked up into the great branches and thought
they were now really in the wood. A confectioner from the town
also came out and put up a stall there; then came another
confectioner who hung a bell over his stall, which was covered
with pitch to protect it from the rain, but the clapper was
wanting.

When people came home they used to say that it had been
very romantic, and that really means something else than
merely taking tea. Three persons declared that they had gone
as far as the end of the wood; they had always heard the
strange sound, but there it seemed to them as if it came from
the town. One of them wrote verses about the bell, and said
that it was like the voice of a mother speaking to an
intelligent and beloved child; no tune, he said, was sweeter
than the sound of the bell.

The emperor of the country heard of it, and declared that
he who would really find out where the sound came from should
receive the title of 'Bellringer to the World,' even if there
was no bell at all.

Now many went out into the wood for the sake of this
splendid berth; but only one of them came back with some sort
of explanation. None of them had gone far enough, nor had he,
and yet he said that the sound of the bell came from a large
owl in a hollow tree. It was a wisdom owl, which continually
knocked its head against the tree, but he was unable to say
with certainty whether its head or the hollow trunk of the
tree was the cause of the noise.

He was appointed 'Bellringer to the World,' and wrote
every year a short dissertation on the owl, but by this means
people did not become any wiser than they had been before.

It was just confirmation-day. The clergyman had delivered
a beautiful and touching sermon, the candidates were deeply
moved by it; it was indeed a very important day for them; they
were all at once transformed from mere children to grown-up
people; the childish soul was to fly over, as it were, into a
more reasonable being.

The sun shone most brightly; and the sound of the great
unknown bell was heard more distinctly than ever. They had a
mind to go thither, all except three. One of them wished to go
home and try on her ball dress, for this very dress and the
ball were the cause of her being confirmed this time,
otherwise she would not have been allowed to go. The second, a
poor boy, had borrowed a coat and a pair of boots from the son
of his landlord to be confirmed in, and he had to return them
at a certain time. The third said that he never went into
strange places if his parents were not with him; he had always
been a good child, and wished to remain so, even after being
confirmed, and they ought not to tease him for this; they,
however, did it all the same. These three, therefore did not
go; the others went on. The sun was shining, the birds were
singing, and the confirmed children sang too, holding each
other by the hand, for they had no position yet, and they were
all equal in the eyes of God. Two of the smallest soon became
tired and returned to the town; two little girls sat down and
made garlands of flowers, they, therefore, did not go on. When
the others arrived at the willow trees, where the confectioner
had put up his stall, they said: 'Now we are out here; the
bell does not in reality exist- it is only something that
people imagine!'

Then suddenly the sound of the bell was heard so
beautifully and solemnly from the wood that four or five made
up their minds to go still further on. The wood was very
thickly grown. It was difficult to advance: wood lilies and
anemones grew almost too high; flowering convolvuli and
brambles were hanging like garlands from tree to tree; while
the nightingales were singing and the sunbeams played. That
was very beautiful! But the way was unfit for the girls; they
would have torn their dresses. Large rocks, covered with moss
of various hues, were lying about; the fresh spring water
rippled forth with a peculiar sound. 'I don't think that can
be the bell,' said one of the confirmed children, and then he
lay down and listened. 'We must try to find out if it is!' And
there he remained, and let the others walk on.

They came to a hut built of the bark of trees and
branches; a large crab-apple tree spread its branches over it,
as if it intended to pour all its fruit on the roof, upon
which roses were blooming; the long boughs covered the gable,
where a little bell was hanging. Was this the one they had
heard? All agreed that it must be so, except one who said that
the bell was too small and too thin to be heard at such a
distance, and that it had quite a different sound to that
which had so touched men's hearts.

He who spoke was a king's son, and therefore the others
said that such a one always wishes to be cleverer than other
people.

Therefore they let him go alone; and as he walked on, the
solitude of the wood produced a feeling of reverence in his
breast; but still he heard the little bell about which the
others rejoiced, and sometimes, when the wind blew in that
direction, he could hear the sounds from the confectioner's
stall, where the others were singing at tea. But the deep
sounds of the bell were much stronger; soon it seemed to him
as if an organ played an accompaniment- the sound came from
the left, from the side where the heart is. Now something
rustled among the bushes, and a little boy stood before the
king's son, in wooden shoes and such a short jacket that the
sleeves did not reach to his wrists. They knew each other: the
boy was the one who had not been able to go with them because
he had to take the coat and boots back to his landlord's son.
That he had done, and had started again in his wooden shoes
and old clothes, for the sound of the bell was too enticing-
he felt he must go on.

'We might go together,' said the king's son. But the poor
boy with the wooden shoes was quite ashamed; he pulled at the
short sleeves of his jacket, and said that he was afraid he
could not walk so fast; besides, he was of opinion that the
bell ought to be sought at the right, for there was all that
was grand and magnificent.

'Then we shall not meet,' said the king's son, nodding to
the poor boy, who went into the deepest part of the wood,
where the thorns tore his shabby clothes and scratched his
hands, face, and feet until they bled. The king's son also
received several good scratches, but the sun was shining on
his way, and it is he whom we will now follow, for he was a
quick fellow. 'I will and must find the bell,' he said, 'if I
have to go to the end of the world.'

Ugly monkeys sat high in the branches and clenched their
teeth. 'Shall we beat him?' they said. 'Shall we thrash him?
He is a king's son!'

But he walked on undaunted, deeper and deeper into the
wood, where the most wonderful flowers were growing; there
were standing white star lilies with blood-red stamens,
sky-blue tulips shining when the wind moved them; apple-trees
covered with apples like large glittering soap bubbles: only
think how resplendent these trees were in the sunshine! All
around were beautiful green meadows, where hart and hind
played in the grass. There grew magnificent oaks and
beech-trees; and if the bark was split of any of them, long
blades of grass grew out of the clefts; there were also large
smooth lakes in the wood, on which the swans were swimming
about and flapping their wings. The king's son often stood
still and listened; sometimes he thought that the sound of the
bell rose up to him out of one of these deep lakes, but soon
he found that this was a mistake, and that the bell was
ringing still farther in the wood. Then the sun set, the
clouds were as red as fire; it became quiet in the wood; he
sank down on his knees, sang an evening hymn and said: 'I
shall never find what I am looking for! Now the sun is
setting, and the night, the dark night, is approaching. Yet I
may perhaps see the round sun once more before he disappears
beneath the horizon. I will climb up these rocks, they are as
high as the highest trees!' And then, taking hold of the
creepers and roots, he climbed up on the wet stones, where
water-snakes were wriggling and the toads, as it were, barked
at him: he reached the top before the sun, seen from such a
height, had quite set. 'Oh, what a splendour!' The sea, the
great majestic sea, which was rolling its long waves against
the shore, stretched out before him, and the sun was standing
like a large bright altar and there where sea and heaven met-
all melted together in the most glowing colours; the wood was
singing, and his heart too. The whole of nature was one large
holy church, in which the trees and hovering clouds formed the
pillars, the flowers and grass the woven velvet carpet, and
heaven itself was the great cupola; up there the flame colour
vanished as soon as the sun disappeared, but millions of stars
were lighted; diamond lamps were shining, and the king's son
stretched his arms out towards heaven, towards the sea, and
towards the wood. Then suddenly the poor boy with the
short-sleeved jacket and the wooden shoes appeared; he had
arrived just as quickly on the road he had chosen. And they
ran towards each other and took one another's hand, in the
great cathedral of nature and poesy, and above them sounded
the invisible holy bell; happy spirits surrounded them,
singing hallelujahs and rejoicing.


This weeks featured Grimm's Fairy Tale is:

Rapunzel

There were once a man and a woman who had long in vain
wished for a child. At length the woman hoped that God
was about to grant her desire. These people had a little
window at the back of their house from which a splendid garden
could be seen, which was full of the most beautiful flowers and
herbs. It was, however, surrounded by a high wall, and no one
dared to go into it because it belonged to an enchantress, who had
great power and was dreaded by all the world. One day the woman
was standing by this window and looking down into the garden,
when she saw a bed which was planted with the most beautiful
rampion - Rapunzel , and it looked so fresh and green that she
longed for it, and had the greatest desire to eat some. This desire
increased every day, and as she knew that she could not get any
of it, she quite pined away, and began to look pale and miserable.
Then her husband was alarmed, and asked, what ails you, dear
wife. Ah, she replied, if I can't eat some of the rampion, which
is in the garden behind our house, I shall die. The man, who loved
her, thought, sooner than let your wife die, bring her some of
the rampion yourself, let it cost what it will. At twilight, he
clambered down over the wall into the garden of the enchantress,
hastily clutched a handful of rampion, and took it to his wife. She
at once made herself a salad of it, and ate it greedily. It tasted
so good to her - so very good, that the next day she longed for it
three times as much as before. If he was to have any rest, her
husband must once more descend into the garden. In the gloom of
evening, therefore, he let himself down again. But when he had
clambered down the wall he was terribly afraid, for he saw the
enchantress standing before him. How can you dare, said she with
angry look, descend into my garden and steal my rampion like a
thief. You shall suffer for it. Ah, answered he, let mercy take
the place of justice, I only made up my mind to do it out of
necessity. My wife saw your rampion from the window, and felt such
a longing for it that she would have died if she had not got some
to eat. Then the enchantress allowed her anger to be softened, and
said to him, if the case be as you say, I will allow you to take
away with you as much rampion as you will, only I make one
condition, you must give me the child which your wife will bring
into the world. It shall be well treated, and I will care for it
like a mother. The man in his terror consented to everything, and
when the woman was brought to bed, the enchantress appeared at once,
gave the child the name of Rapunzel , and took it away with her.
Rapunzel  grew into the most beautiful child under the sun.
When she was twelve years old, the enchantress shut her into a
tower, which lay in a forest, and had neither stairs nor door, but
quite at the top was a little window. When the enchantress
wanted to go in, she placed herself beneath it and cried,
Rapunzel , Rapunzel ,
let down your hair to me.
Rapunzel  had magnificent long hair, fine as spun gold, and when
she heard the voice of the enchantress she unfastened her braided
tresses, wound them round one of the hooks of the window above,
and then the hair fell twenty ells down, and the enchantress climbed
up by it.
After a year or two, it came to pass that the king's son rode
through the forest and passed by the tower. Then he heard a song,
which was so charming that he stood still and listened. This was
Rapunzel , who in her solitude passed her time in letting her sweet
voice resound. The king's son wanted to climb up to her, and
looked for the door of the tower, but none was to be found. He
rode home, but the singing had so deeply touched his heart, that
every day he went out into the forest and listened to it. Once when
he was thus standing behind a tree, he saw that an enchantress
came there, and he heard how she cried,
Rapunzel , Rapunzel ,
let down your hair.
Then Rapunzel  let down the braids of her hair, and the
enchantress climbed up to her. If that is the ladder by which one
mounts, I too will try my fortune, said he, and the next day when
it began to grow dark, he went to the tower and cried,
Rapunzel , Rapunzel ,
let down your hair.
Immediately the hair fell down and the king's son climbed up.
At first Rapunzel  was terribly frightened when a man, such as
her eyes had never yet beheld, came to her. But the king's son
began to talk to her quite like a friend, and told her that his
heart had been so stirred that it had let him have no rest, and he
had been forced to see her. Then Rapunzel  lost her fear, and when
he asked her if she would take him for her husband, and she saw that
he was young and handsome, she thought, he will love me more than
old dame gothel does. And she said yes, and laid her hand in his.
She said, I will willingly go away with you, but I do not know
how to get down. Bring with you a skein of silk every time that
you come, and I will weave a ladder with it, and when that is ready
I will descend, and you will take me on your horse. They agreed
that until that time he should come to her every evening, for the
old woman came by day. The enchantress remarked nothing of
this, until once Rapunzel  said to her, tell me, dame gothel, how
it happens that you are so much heavier for me to draw up than
the young king's son - he is with me in a moment. Ah. You
wicked child, cried the enchantress. What do I hear you say. I
thought I had separated you from all the world, and yet you have
deceived me. In her anger she clutched Rapunzel 's beautiful
tresses, wrapped them twice round her left hand, seized a pair of
scissors with the right, and snip, snap, they were cut off, and the
lovely braids lay on the ground. And she was so pitiless that she
took poor Rapunzel  into a desert where she had to live in great
grief and misery.
On the same day that she cast out Rapunzel , however, the
enchantress fastened the braids of hair, which she had cut off, to
the hook of the window, and when the king's son came and cried,
Rapunzel , Rapunzel ,
let down your hair,
she let the hair down. The king's son ascended, but instead of
finding his dearest Rapunzel , he found the enchantress, who gazed
at him with wicked and venomous looks. Aha, she cried mockingly,
you would fetch your dearest, but the beautiful bird sits
no longer singing in the nest. The cat has got it, and will scratch
out your eyes as well. Rapunzel  is lost to you. You will never see
her again. The king's son was beside himself with pain, and in
his despair he leapt down from the tower. He escaped with his life,
but the thorns into which he fell pierced his eyes. Then he
wandered quite blind about the forest, ate nothing but roots and
berries, and did naught but lament and weep over the loss of his
dearest wife. Thus he roamed about in misery for some years, and at
length came to the desert where Rapunzel , with the twins to which
she had given birth, a boy and a girl, lived in wretchedness. He
heard a voice, and it seemed so familiar to him that he went towards
it, and when he approached, Rapunzel  knew him and fell on his neck
and wept. Two of her tears wetted his eyes and they grew clear
again, and he could see with them as before. He led her to his
kingdom where he was joyfully received, and they lived for a long
time afterwards, happy and contented.

 


 

 
 
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