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Fairy Tales Every Child Should Know

The seven dwarfs have forbidden me


Poor Snow-white could not refuse such a present, so she opened the door and let the woman in, quite forgetting the advice of the dwarfs. After she had bought a few things, the old woman said, "Let me try this comb in your hair; it is so fine it will make it beautifully smooth and glossy."

So Snow-white, thinking no wrong, stood before the woman to have her hair dressed; but no sooner had the comb touched the roots of her hair than the poison took effect, and the maiden fell to the ground lifeless.

"You paragon of beauty," said the wicked woman, "all has just happened as I expected," and then she went away quickly.

Fortunately evening soon arrived, and the seven dwarfs returned home. When they saw Snow-white lying dead on the ground, they knew at once that the stepmother had been there again; but on seeing the poisoned comb in her hair they pulled it out quickly, and Snow-white very soon came to herself, and related all that had passed.

Again they warned her not to let anyone enter the house during their absence, and on no account to open the door; but Snow-white was not clever enough to resist her clever wicked stepmother, and she forgot to obey.

The wicked queen felt sure now that she had really killed Snow-white; so as soon as she returned home she went to her looking-glass, and inquired:

"Mirror, mirror on the wall, Who is most beautiful of all?"

But the mirror replied:

"Queen, thou art the fairest here, But not when Snow-white is near; Over the mountains still is she, Fairer a thousand times than thee."

As the looking-glass thus replied, the queen trembled and quaked with rage. "Snow-white shall die," cried she, "if it costs me my own life!"

Then she went into a lonely forbidden chamber where no one was allowed to come, and poisoned a beautiful apple. Outwardly it looked ripe and tempting, of a pale green with rosy cheeks, so that it made everyone's mouth water to look at it, but whoever ate even a small piece must die.

As soon as this apple was ready, the wicked queen painted her face, disguised her hair, dressed herself as a farmer's wife, and went again over the mountains to the dwarfs' cottage.

When she knocked at the door, Snow-white stretched her head out of the window, and said, "I dare not let you in; the seven dwarfs have forbidden me."

"But I am all right," said the farmer's wife. "Stay, I will show you my apples. Are they not beautiful? let me make you a present of one."

"No, thank you," cried Snow-white; "I dare not take it."

"What!" cried the woman, "are you afraid it is poisoned? Look here now, I will cut the apple in halves; you shall have the rosy-cheek side, and I will eat the other."

The apple was so cleverly made that the red side alone was poisonous. Snow-white longed so much for the beautiful fruit as she saw the farmer's wife eat one half that she could not any longer resist, but stretched out her hand from the window and took the poisoned half. But no sooner had she taken one mouthful than she fell on the ground dead.

Then the wicked queen glanced in at the window with a horrible look in her eye, and laughed aloud as she exclaimed:

"White as snow, red as blood, and black as ebony; this time the dwarfs will not be able to awake thee."


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