Europa's Fairy Book - Joseph Jacobs

Europa's Fairy Book By Joseph Jacobs

Sample:

THE CINDER-MAID

ONCE upon a time, though it was not in my time or in your time, or in anybody else's time, there was a great King who had an only son, the Prince and Heir who wasabouttocome of age. So the King sent round a herald who should blow his trumpet at every four corners where two roads met. And when the people came together he would call out, "O yes, O yes, O yes, know ye that His Grace the King will give on Monday sennight" that meant seven nights or a week after "a Royal Ball to which all maidens of noble birth are hereby summoned; and be it furthermore known unto you that at this ball his Highness the Prince will select unto himself a lady that shall be his bride and our future Queen. God save the King."

Now there was among the nobles of the King's Court one who had married twice, and by the first marriage he had but one daughter, and as she was growing up her father thought that she ought to have some one to look after her. So he married again, a lady with two daughters, and his new wife, instead of caring for his daughter, thought only of her own and favoured them in every way. She would give them beautiful dresses but none to her step-daughter who had only to wear the cast-off clothes of the other two. The noble's daughter was set to do all the drudgery of the house, to attend the kitchen fire, and had naught to sleep on but the heap of cinders raked out in the scullery; and that is why they called her Cinder-Maid. And no one took pity on her and she would go and weep at her mother's grave where she had planted a hazel tree, under which she sat.

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