从前有只老山羊。 它生了七只小山羊，并且像所有母亲爱孩子一样爱它们。 一天，它要到森林里去取食物，便把七个孩子全叫过来，对它们说："亲爱的孩子们，我要到森林里去一下，你们一定要提防狼。要是让狼进屋，它会把你们全部吃掉的--连皮带毛通通吃光。这个坏蛋常常把自己化装成别的样子，但是，你们只要一听到他那粗哑的声音、一看到它那黑黑的爪子，就能认出它来。"小山羊们说："好妈妈，我们会当心的。你去吧，不用担心。"老山羊咩咩地叫了几声，便放心地去了。
没过多久，有人敲门，而且大声说："开门哪，我的好孩子。你们的妈妈回来了，还给你们每个人带来了一点东西。"可是，小山羊们听到粗哑的声音，立刻知道是狼来了。 "我们不开门，"它们大声说，"你不是我们的妈妈。我们的妈妈说话时声音又软又好听，而你的声音非常粗哑，你是狼！"于是，狼跑到杂货商那里，买了一大块白垩土，吃了下去，结果嗓子变细了。 然后它又回来敲山羊家的门，喊道："开门哪，我的好孩子。你们的妈妈回来了，给你们每个人都带了点东西。"可是狼把它的黑爪子搭在了窗户上，小山羊们看到黑爪子便一起叫道："我们不开门。我们的妈妈没有你这样的黑爪子。你是狼！"于是狼跑到面包师那里，对他说："我的脚受了点伤，给我用面团揉一揉。"等面包师用面团给它揉过之后，狼又跑到磨坊主那里，对他说："在我的脚上洒点白面粉。"磨坊主想："狼肯定是想去骗什么人"，便拒绝了它的要求。 可是狼说："要是你不给我洒面粉，我就把你吃掉。"磨坊主害怕了，只好洒了点面粉，把狼的爪子弄成了白色。 人就是这个德行！
这个坏蛋第三次跑到山羊家，一面敲门一面说："开门哪，孩子们。你们的好妈妈回来了，还从森林里给你们每个人带回来一些东西。"小山羊们叫道："你先把脚给我们看看，好让我们知道你是不是我们的妈妈。"狼把爪子伸进窗户，小山羊们看到爪子是白的，便相信它说的是真话，打开了屋门。 然而进来的是狼！ 小山羊们吓坏了，一个个都想躲起来。 第一只小山羊跳到了桌子下，第二只钻进了被子，第三只躲到了炉子里，第四只跑进了厨房，第五只藏在柜子里，第六只挤在洗脸盆下，第七只爬进了钟盒里。 狼把它们一个个都找了出来，毫不客气地把它们全都吞进了肚子。 只有躲在钟盒里的那只最小的山羊没有被狼发现。 狼吃饱了之后，心满意足地离开了山羊家，来到绿草地上的一棵大树下，躺下身子开始呼呼大睡起来。
没过多久，老山羊从森林里回来了。 啊！ 它都看到了些什么呀！ 屋门敞开着，桌子、椅子和凳子倒在地上，洗脸盆摔成了碎片，被子和枕头掉到了地上。 它找它的孩子 ，可哪里也找不到。 它一个个地叫它们的名字，可是没有一个出来答应它。 最后，当它叫到最小的山羊的名字时，一个细细的声音喊叫道："好妈妈，我在钟盒里。"老山羊把它抱了出来，它告诉妈妈狼来过了，并且把哥哥姐姐们都吃掉了。 大家可以想象出老山羊失去孩子后哭得多么伤心！
老山羊最后伤心地哭着走了出去，最小的山羊也跟着跑了出去。 当它们来到草地上时，狼还躺在大树下睡觉，呼噜声震得树枝直抖。 老山羊从前后左右打量着狼，看到那家伙鼓得老高的肚子里有什么东西在动个不停。 "天哪，"它说，"我的那些被它吞进肚子里当晚餐的可怜的孩子，难道它们还活着吗？"最小的山羊跑回家，拿来了剪刀和针线。 老山羊剪开那恶魔的肚子，刚剪了第一刀，一只小羊就把头探了出来。 它继续剪下去，六只小羊一个个都跳了出来，全都活着，而且一点也没有受伤，因为那贪婪的坏蛋是把它们整个吞下去的。 这是多么令人开心的事啊！ 它们拥抱自己的妈妈，像当新娘的裁缝一样高兴得又蹦又跳。 可是羊妈妈说："你们去找些大石头来。我们趁这坏蛋还没有醒过来，把石头装到它的肚子里去。"七只小山羊飞快地拖来很多石头，拼命地往狼肚子里塞；然后山羊妈妈飞快地把狼肚皮缝好，结果狼一点也没有发觉，它根本都没有动弹。
狼终于睡醒了。 它站起身，想到井边去喝水，因为肚子里装着的石头使它口渴得要死。 可它刚一迈脚，肚子里的石头便互相碰撞，发出哗啦哗啦的响声。 它叫道：
There was once an old goat who had seven little ones, and was as fond of them as ever mother was of her children. One day she had to go into the wood to fetch food for them, so she called them all round her. "Dear children," said she, "I am going out into the wood; and while I am gone, be on your guard against the wolf, for if he were once to get inside he would eat you up, skin, bones, and all. The wretch often disguises himself, but he may always be known by his hoarse voice and black paws." - "Dear mother," answered the kids, "you need not be afraid, we will take good care of ourselves." And the mother bleated good-bye, and went on her way with an easy mind.
It was not long before some one came knocking at the house-door, and crying out: "Open the door, my dear children, your mother is come back, and has brought each of you something." But the little kids knew it was the wolf by the hoarse voice. "We will not open the door," cried they; "you are not our mother, she has a delicate and sweet voice, and your voice is hoarse; you must be the wolf." Then off went the wolf to a shop and bought a big lump of chalk, and ate it up to make his voice soft. And then he came back, knocked at the house-door, and cried: "Open the door, my dear children, your mother is here, and has brought each of you something." But the wolf had put up his black paws against the window, and the kids seeing this, cried out, "We will not open the door; our mother has no black paws like you; you must be the wolf." The wolf then ran to a baker. "Baker," said he, "I am hurt in the foot; pray spread some dough over the place." And when the baker had plastered his feet, he ran to the miller. "Miller," said he, "strew me some white meal over my paws." But the miller refused, thinking the wolf must be meaning harm to some one. "If you don't do it," cried the wolf, "I'll eat you up!" And the miller was afraid and did as he was told. And that just shows what men are.
And now came the rogue the third time to the door and knocked. "Open, children!" cried he. "Your dear mother has come home, and brought you each something from the wood." - "First show us your paws," said the kids, "so that we may know if you are really our mother or not." And he put up his paws against the window, and when they saw that they were white, all seemed right, and they opened the door. And when he was inside they saw it was the wolf, and they were terrified and tried to hide themselves. One ran under the table, the second got into the bed, the third into the oven, the fourth in the kitchen, the fifth in the cupboard, the sixth under the sink, the seventh in the clock-case. But the wolf found them all, and gave them short shrift; one after the other he swallowed down, all but the youngest, who was hid in the clock-case. And so the wolf, having got what he wanted, strolled forth into the green meadows, and laying himself down under a tree, he fell asleep.
Not long after, the mother goat came back from the wood; and, oh! what a sight met her eyes! the door was standing wide open, table, chairs, and stools, all thrown about, dishes broken, quilt and pillows torn off the bed. She sought her children, they were nowhere to be found. She called to each of them by name, but nobody answered, until she came to the name of the youngest. "Here I am, mother," a little voice cried, "here, in the clock case." And so she helped him out, and heard how the wolf had come, and eaten all the rest. And you may think how she cried for the loss of her dear children.
At last in her grief she wandered out of doors, and the youngest kid with her; and when they came into the meadow, there they saw the wolf lying under a tree, and snoring so that the branches shook. The mother goat looked at him carefully on all sides and she noticed how something inside his body was moving and struggling. Dear me! thought she, can it be that my poor children that he devoured for his evening meal are still alive? And she sent the little kid back to the house for a pair of shears, and needle, and thread. Then she cut the wolf's body open, and no sooner had she made one snip than out came the head of one of the kids, and then another snip, and then one after the other the six little kids all jumped out alive and well, for in his greediness the rogue had swallowed them down whole. How delightful this was! so they comforted their dear mother and hopped about like tailors at a wedding. "Now fetch some good hard stones," said the mother, "and we will fill his body with them, as he lies asleep." And so they fetched some in all haste, and put them inside him, and the mother sewed him up so quickly again that he was none the wiser.
When the wolf at last awoke, and got up, the stones inside him made him feel very thirsty, and as he was going to the brook to drink, they struck and rattled one against another. And so he cried out:
"What is this I feel inside me
Knocking hard against my bones?
How should such a thing betide me!
They were kids, and now they're stones."
So he came to the brook, and stooped to drink, but the heavy stones weighed him down, so he fell over into the water and was drowned. And when the seven little kids saw it they came up running. "The wolf is dead, the wolf is dead!" they cried, and taking hands, they danced with their mother all about the place.