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Fairy Tales Every Child Should Know

Dragged him to the edge of the moat


"Fa, fe, fi, fo, fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman; Let him be alive, or let him be dead, I'll grind his bones to make me bread."

"Say you so my friend?" said Jack, "you are a monstrous miller indeed." "Art thou," cried the giant, "the villain that killed my kinsmen? Then I will tear thee with my teeth, and grind thy bones to powder." "You must catch me first," said Jack; and throwing off his coat of darkness, and putting on his shoes of swiftness, he began to run; the giant following him like a walking castle, making the earth shake at every step.

Jack led him round and round the walls of the house, that the company might see the monster; and to finish the work Jack ran over the drawbridge, the giant going after him with his club. But when the giant came to the middle, where the bridge had been cut on both sides, the great weight of his body made it break, and he tumbled into the water, and rolled about like a large whale. Jack now stood by the side of the moat, and laughed and jeered at him, saying: "I think you told me, you would grind my bones to powder. When will you begin?" The giant foamed at both his horrid mouths with fury, and plunged from side to side of the moat; but he could not get out to have revenge on his little foe. At last Jack ordered a cart rope to be brought to him. He then drew it over his two heads, and by the help of a team of horses, dragged him to the edge of the moat,

where he cut off the monster's heads; and before he either eat or drank, he sent them both to the court of King Arthur. He then went back to the table with the company, and the rest of the day was spent in mirth and good cheer. After staying with the knight for some time, Jack grew weary of such an idle life, and set out again in search of new adventures. He went over the hills and dales without meeting any, till he came to the foot of a very high mountain. Here he knocked at the door of a small and lonely house; and an old man, with a head as white as snow, let him in. "Good father" said Jack, "can you lodge a traveller who has lost his way?" "Yes," said the hermit, "I can, if you will accept such fare as my poor house affords." Jack entered, and the old man set before him some bread and fruit for his supper. When Jack had eaten as much as he chose, the hermit said, "My son, I know you are the famous conqueror of giants; now, on the top of this mountain is an enchanted castle, kept by a giant named Galligantus, who, by the help of a vile magician, gets many knights into his castle, where he changes them into the shape of beasts. Above all I lament the hard fate of a duke's daughter, whom they seized as she was walking in her father's garden, and brought hither through the air in a chariot drawn by two fiery dragons, and turned her into the shape of a deer. Many knights have tried to destroy the enchantment, and deliver her; yet none have been able to do it, by reason of two fiery griffins who guard the gate of the castle, and destroy all who come nigh. But as you, my son, have an invisible coat, you may pass by them without being seen; and on the gates of the castle, you will find engraved, by what means the enchantment may be broken."

Jack promised, that in the morning, at the risk of his life he would break the enchantment: and after a sound sleep he arose early, put on his invisible coat, and got ready for the attempt. When he had climbed to the top of the mountain, he saw the two fiery griffins; but he passed between them without the least fear of danger; for they could not see him because of his invisible coat. On the castle gate he found a golden trumpet, under which were written these lines:


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