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Fairy Tales Every Child Should Know

That when the king had partaken of the collation


The

marquis gave his hand to the young princess as she alighted, and followed the king who went before; they entered a spacious hall, where they found a splendid collation which the Ogre had prepared for some friends he had that day expected to visit him; but who, hearing that the king with the princess and a great gentleman of the court were within, had not dared to enter. The king was so much charmed with the amiable qualities and noble fortune of the marquis of Carabas, and the young princess too had fallen so violently in love with him, that when the king had partaken of the collation, and drunk a few glasses of wine, he said to the marquis: "It will be you own fault, my lord marquis of Carabas, if you do not soon become my son-in-law." The marquis received the intelligence with a thousand respectful acknowledgments, accepted the honour conferred upon him, and married the princess that very day. The cat became a great lord, and never after ran after rats and mice but for his amusement.

CHAPTER XVI

THE SLEEPING BEAUTY IN THE WOOD

Once upon a time there was a king and a queen who grieved sorely that they had no children. When at last the queen gave birth to a daughter the king was so overjoyed that he gave a great christening feast, the like of which had never before been known. He asked all the fairies in the land--there were seven all told--to

stand godmothers to the little princess, hoping that each might give her a gift, and so she should have all imaginable perfections.

After the christening, all the company returned to the palace, where a great feast had been spread for the fairy godmothers. Before each was set a magnificent plate, with a gold knife and a gold fork studded with diamonds and rubies. Just as they were seating themselves, however, there entered an old fairy who had not been invited because more than fifty years ago she had shut herself up in a tower and it was supposed that she was either dead or enchanted.

The king ordered a cover to be laid for her, but it could not be a massive gold one like the others, for only seven had been ordered made. The old fairy thought herself ill-used and muttered between her teeth. One of the young fairies, overhearing her, and fancying she might work some mischief to the little baby, went and hid herself behind the hangings in the hall, so as to be able to have the last word and undo any harm the old fairy might wish to work. The fairies now began to endow the princess. The youngest, for her gift, decreed that she should be the most beautiful person in the world; the next that she should have the mind of an angel; the third that she should be perfectly graceful; the fourth that she should dance admirably well; the fifth, that she should sing like a nightingale; the sixth, that she should play charmingly upon every musical instrument. The turn of the old fairy had now come, and she declared, while her head shook with malice, that the princess should pierce her hand with a spindle and die of the wound. This dreadful fate threw all the company into tears of dismay, when the young fairy who had hidden herself came forward and said:

"Be of good cheer, king and queen; your daughter shall not so die. It is true I cannot entirely undo what my elder has done. The princess will pierce her hand with a spindle, but, instead of dying, she will only fall into a deep sleep. The sleep will last a hundred years, and at the end of that time a king's son will come to wake her."


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