DANSK

Snehvide

ENGLISH

Snow-white


Det var midt om vinteren, og sneflokkene faldt som dun ned fra himlen. Dronningen sad ved vinduet og syede i en ramme af sort ibentræ, og mens hun syede og syede og kiggede ud på den hvide sne, kom hun til at stikke sig i fingeren, og der faldt tre bloddråber i sneen. Og da hun så, hvor smukt den røde farve strålede i den hvide sne, tænkte hun: "Gid jeg dog havde et barn, der var så hvidt som sne, så rødt som blod og så sort som ibentræ." Kort derefter fødte hun en datter, som var hvid og rød med hår så sort som ibentræ. Den lille pige blev kaldt Snehvide, og da hun var født, døde dronningen.

Et år efter tog kongen sig en anden hustru. Hun var smuk, men stolt og hovmodig, og kunne ikke tåle, at nogen var smukkere end hun. Hun havde et spejl, og når hun så sig deri og spurgte:

"Lille spejl på væggen der,
hvem er skønnest i landet her?"

svarede spejlet:

"Ingen i verden er dejlig som du."

Så var hun tilfreds, for hun vidste, at spejlet talte sandhed.

Snehvide voksede imidlertid til og blev smukkere og smukkere, og da hun blev sytten år, var hun så skøn som den lyse dag, og langt skønnere end dronningen. Og da denne en dag spurgte spejlet:

"Lille spejl på væggen der,
hvem er skønnest i landet her?"

svarede det:

"Dronning, stor er din skønheds glans,
men Snehvide er skønnest med ungdommens krans."

Dronningen blev både gul og grøn af misundelse, og fra nu af hadede hun Snehvide af hele sit hjerte. Hun havde hverken ro dag eller nat, og en morgen kaldte hun på en af jægerne og sagde: "Jeg vil ikke mere se Snehvide for mine øjne. Tag hende med ud i skoven og slå hende ihjel og bring mig lever og lunge." Jægeren gik med hende, men da han havde løftet dolken, som skulle gennembore Snehvides uskyldige hjerte, begyndte hun at græde og sagde: "Å, du må ikke slå mig ihjel. Jeg skal gå ind i den store skov og aldrig mere komme hjem." Jægeren fik medlidenhed med hende, fordi hun var så smuk, og sagde: "Gå kun, stakkels barn." Ved sig selv tænkte han: "Det varer vist ikke længe, før de vilde dyr har ædt dig." Men det var dog, som om en sten var faldet fra hans hjerte, fordi han ikke havde dræbt hende. Da der i det samme kom et ungt vildsvin springende, stak han det ihjel og bragte lever og lunge til dronningen. Kokken måtte salte og koge dem, og hun spiste dem og troede, det var Snehvides.

Nu var det stakkels barn helt alene i den store skov, og hun var så bange, at hun stirrede angst på hvert træ, hun kom forbi. Hun vidste slet ikke, hvad hun skulle gøre, og tilsidst gav hun sig til at løbe af alle kræfter, over spidse stene og gennem tjørnekrat, og de vilde dyr for lige forbi hende uden at gøre hende noget. Hun løb, så længe hendes ben kunne bære hende, og henimod aften kom hun til et lille hus og gik derind. Alting derinde var småt, men så nydeligt og rent, at man ikke kan tænke sig det. I midten af stuen stod der et bord med en snehvid dug, syv små tallerkener med skeer, gafler og knive, og syv små bægre. Henne ved væggen stod syv små senge med hvide lagener. Snehvide var sulten og tørstig og spiste en mundfuld kød og kål af hver tallerken og drak en slurk vin af hvert bæger, for hun ville ikke tage det fra en alene. Derpå ville hun lægge sig i en af sengene, men den ene var for kort og den anden for lang, den tredje for smal, den fjerde for bred, og således videre, indtil endelig den syvende passede hende. Der blev hun så liggende, bad sin aftenbøn og faldt snart i søvn.

Da det var blevet mørkt kom de syv små dværge, hvem huset tilhørte, hjem fra deres arbejde i bjergene. Da de fik tændt lys, så de straks, at der måtte have været nogen, mens de var borte, for tingene stod ikke på deres sædvanlige plads. "Hvem har siddet på min stol?" sagde den første. "Hvem har spist af min tallerken?" sagde den anden. "Hvem har taget mit brød?" sagde den tredie. "Hvem har spist af min kål?" sagde den fjerde. "Hvem har brugt min gaffel?" sagde den femte. "Hvem har skåret med min kniv?" sagde den sjette. "Hvem har drukket af mit bæger?" sagde den syvende. Da en af dem vendte sig om, så han, at der var en fordybning i hans seng. "Der har været nogen oppe i min seng," sagde han, og da de andre kom derhen råbte de allesammen: "Der har også været nogen i min." Men da den syvende kom hen til sin seng, så han Snehvide. Han kaldte på de andre, og de kom løbende med deres syv små lys. "Du gode Gud, hvor hun er dejlig," råbte de og var så glade over hende, at de ikke nænnede at vække hende. Den syvende dværg sov en time hos hver af sine kammerater, og så var natten forbi.

Da Snehvide vågnede om morgenen og så de syv dværge, blev hun meget forskrækket, men de var så venlige imod hende, at hun snart blev beroliget. "Hvad hedder du?" spurgte de. "Snehvide," svarede hun. "Hvordan er du dog kommet herind?" Hun fortalte dem da, at hendes stedmor havde villet dræbe hende, men jægeren, der skulle gøre det, havde givet hende lov til at løbe sin vej, og så havde hun gået hele dagen lige til hun var kommet hen til det lille hus. "Hvis du vil holde huset i orden og lave mad og sy og strikke for os," sagde dværgene, "så må du gerne blive her, og vi skal nok være gode imod dig." Snehvide sagde straks ja og blev hos dem. Om morgenen gik dværgene ud i bjergene for at arbejde, og når de kom hjem igen om aftenen, havde Snehvide maden færdig til dem. Hele dagen var hun alene, og dværgene advarede hende ofte og sagde: "Tag dig i agt for din stedmor, hun får nok at vide, at du er her. Lad ingen komme ind til dig."

Da dronningen havde spist det, som hun troede var Snehvides lever og lunge, gik hun hen foran spejlet og spurgte:

"Lille spejl på væggen der,
hvem er skønnest i landet her?"

Spejlet svarede:

"Ingen i landet er dejlig som du,
men Snehvide langt borte bag de syv bjerge,
hos de syv små gode, flittige dværge,
hun er tusindfold mere dejlig endnu."

Da blev hun forfærdet, for hun vidste, at spejlet talte sandhed, og hun mærkede nu, at jægeren havde narret hende. Hun tænkte dag og nat på, hvordan hun skulle komme Snehvide til livs, og endelig fandt hun på råd. Hun malede sit ansigt og klædte sig på som en gammel sælgekone, så hun var ganske ukendelig. Derpå gik hun over de syv bjerge til de syv små dværge, bankede på døren og råbte: "Her er billige varer at få." Snehvide kiggede ud af vinduet og spurgte: "Hvad har I da?" - "Mange gode ting," svarede konen, "se her, smukke snørebånd," og hun viste hende et, der var flettet af broget silke. "Den skikkelige kone kan jeg da nok lukke ind," tænkte Snehvide, gik hen og åbnede døren og købte de smukke bånd. "Men hvordan er det, du ser ud, barn," sagde den gamle, "kom her, så skal jeg snøre dig ordentlig." Snehvide tænkte ikke noget ondt derved, men stillede sig hen foran konen. Men den gamle snørede så hurtigt og så fast, at Snehvide ikke kunne få vejret og faldt om som død. "Nu kan du sige, du har været den smukkeste," sagde hun grinende og skyndte sig bort.

Kort efter kom de syv dværge hjem og blev meget forskrækkede, da de så deres kære Snehvide ligge som livløs på gulvet uden at røre sig. De løftede hende op, og da de så, hvor fast hun var snøret, skar de båndene itu. Hun begyndte da at trække vejret ganske svagt, og lidt efter lidt kom hun til sig selv igen. Da dværgene hørte, hvordan det var gået til, sagde de: "Det har sikkert været den onde dronning. Tag dig endelig i agt og luk ingen ind, når vi ikke er hjemme."

Da dronningen var kommet hjem, gik hun hen foran spejlet og spurgte:

"Lille spejl på væggen der,
hvem er skønnest i landet her?"

Spejlet svarede som sædvanlig:

"Ingen i landet er dejlig som du,
men Snehvide langt borte bag de syv bjerge,
hos de syv små, gode, flittige dværge,
hun er tusindfold mere dejlig endnu."

Da hun hørte det, blev hun så forfærdet, at alt blodet strømmede hende til hjertet. "Nu skal jeg sørge for, at hun for alvor skal komme af med livet," tænkte hun, og ved hjælp af alle slags trolddomskunster lavede hun en forgiftet kam og forklædte sig igen som en gammel kone. Derpå gik hun over de syv bjerge til de syv små dværge, bankede på og råbte: "Her er billige varer at få." Snehvide stak hovedet ud af vinduet og sagde: "Det kan ikke nytte, jeg må ikke lukke op for nogen." - "Du må vel nok have lov til at se på det," sagde den gamle og tog den forgiftede kam frem og viste hende den. Snehvide syntes så godt om den, at hun lod sig overtale til at lukke op og købe kammen. "Nu vil jeg rede dig," sagde den gamle, og Snehvide havde ingen mistanke, men lod hende gøre det. I samme øjeblik, kammen blev stukket i håret, virkede giften, og Snehvide faldt om som død. "Nu er det nok ude med dig, min dejlighed," sagde den gamle hånligt og gik sin vej. Heldigvis kom de syv dværge hjem et øjeblik efter og fik den forgiftede kam taget ud af hendes hår. Snehvide kom til sig selv igen og fortalte, hvad der var sket, og de advarede hende igen mod at lukke nogen ind.

Da dronningen var kommet hjem, spurgte hun:

"Lille spejl på væggen der,
hvem er skønnest i landet her?"

Spejlet svarede igen:

"Ingen i landet er dejlig som du,
men Snehvide langt borte bag de syv bjerge,
hos de syv små, gode, flittige dværge,
hun er tusindfold mere dejlig endnu."

Da hun hørte det, rystede hun fra top til tå af raseri. "Snehvide skal dø, om det så skal koste mit liv," råbte hun. Derpå gik hun ind i et værelse, låsede døren og lavede et forgiftet æble. Det var smukt, med røde kinder, og enhver, der så det, måtte få lyst til det, men den, der spiste af det, døde øjeblikkelig. Dronningen smurte nu sit ansigt ind, klædte sig på som en bondekone og gik over de syv bjerge til de syv små dværge og bankede på. "Jeg må ikke lukke op for nogen," sagde Snehvide og stak hovedet ud af vinduet. "Det er såmænd også ligemeget," svarede bondekonen, "jeg skal nok blive af med mine æbler. Se her, det må du have." - "Nej tak," svarede Snehvide, "jeg må ikke tage imod noget som helst." - "Er du måske bange for, at det skal være giftigt," spurgte den gamle, "nu skærer jeg det over, så får du det røde og jeg spiser det hvide." Æblet var nemlig lavet sådan, at kun den røde side var forgiftet. Snehvide havde stor lyst til det dejlige æble, og da hun så, at konen spiste deraf, kunne hun ikke modstå, men rakte hånden ud og fik det halve æble. Næppe havde hun fået det i munden, før hun sank død om på jorden. Dronningen stod i nogen tid og så ondt på hende, så slog hun en høj latter op og sagde: "Hvid som sne, rød som blod, sort som ibentræ. Denne gang kan dværgene ikke frelse dig." Derpå gik hun hjem og spurgte spejlet:

"Lille spejl på væggen der,
hvem er skønnest i landet her?"

Og spejlet svarede:

"Ingen i verden er dejlig som du."

Nu havde hendes misundelige hjerte ro, for så vidt som et misundeligt hjerte nogensinde kan få ro.

Da dværgene om aftenen kom hjem, fandt de Snehvide liggende død på jorden. De løftede hende op, og ledte, for at finde noget, der kunne have gjort hende fortræd, snørede hendes liv op, redte hendes hår og vaskede hende med vand og vin, men det hjalp ikke. Hun var og blev død. De lagde hende da på en båre og sad i tre dage hos hende og græd. De ville nu begrave hende, men hun var så smuk med friske, røde kinder, at de ikke kunne bære over deres hjerter at lægge hende ned i den sorte, kolde jord. De lavede så en kiste af glas, lagde hende deri og skrev med guldbogstaver hendes navn, og at hun var en kongedatter. Derpå satte de kisten ud på et bjerg og skiftedes til at holde vagt ved den. Dyrene sørgede også over Snehvide, først kom der en ugle, så en ravn og til sidst en due og satte sig ved kisten og græd.

Snehvide lå nu i lang, lang tid i kisten og så ud som om hun sov, for hun var endnu så hvid som sne, så rød som blod og så sort som ibentræ. Engang red imidlertid en kongesøn igennem skoven og kom til dværgenes hus og ville overnatte der. Han så kisten, hvori Snehvide lå, og læste, hvad der var skrevet på den. "Sælg mig hende," sagde han til dværgene, "I må få alt, hvad jeg ejer og har." - "Nej," svarede dværgene, "ikke for alverdens guld vil vi sælge hende." - "Forær mig hende da," bad prinsen, "jeg kan ikke leve uden hende. Jeg vil holde hende højt i ære." Dværgene fik medlidenhed med ham, og gav ham til sidst lov til at tage kisten med. Men da tjenerne bar den over den ujævne vej, snublede en af dem, og derved fik kisten et stød, så det giftige æble for ud af Snehvides mund. Lidt efter kom hun til sig selv igen, åbnede låget og rejste sig op og råbte: "Hvor er jeg dog." Kongesønnen blev ude af sig selv af glæde og fortalte hende, hvordan alt var gået til. "Du er den jeg elsker højest i verden," sagde han, "følg mig til min fars slot og bliv min hustru." Snehvide fulgte ham gerne, og der blev truffet store forberedelser til brylluppet.

Snehvides onde stedmor blev også indbudt, og da hun havde taget sine smukkeste klæder på, gik hun hen foran spejlet og spurgte:

"Lille spejl på væggen der,
hvem er skønnest i landet her?"

Spejlet svarede:

"Du er vel dejligst i dette land,
men med dronningen aldrig du måle dig kan."

Den onde kvinde var ved at dø af raseri, men var tillige så underlig angst, hun vidste ikke selv hvorfor. Først ville hun slet ikke tage til festen, men hendes nysgerrighed efter at se den unge dronning lod hende ikke have ro. Da hun kom ind i salen kendte hun straks Snehvide og blev ganske stiv af skræk. Men henne over ilden stod der et par glødende jernsko, dem måtte hun tage på og danse, til hun faldt død om.
It was the middle of winter, and the snow-flakes were falling like feathers from the sky, and a queen sat at her window working, and her embroidery-frame was of ebony. And as she worked, gazing at times out on the snow, she pricked her finger, and there fell from it three drops of blood on the snow. And when she saw how bright and red it looked, she said to herself, "Oh that I had a child as white as snow, as red as blood, and as black as the wood of the embroidery frame!" Not very long after she had a daughter, with a skin as white as snow, lips as red as blood, and hair as black as ebony, and she was named Snow-white. And when she was born the queen died. After a year had gone by the king took another wife, a beautiful woman, but proud and overbearing, and she could not bear to be surpassed in beauty by any one. She had a magic looking-glass, and she used to stand before it, and look in it, and say,

"Looking-glass upon the wall,
Who is fairest of us all?"

And the looking-glass would answer,

"You are fairest of them all."

And she was contented, for she knew that the looking-glass spoke the truth. Now, Snow-white was growing prettier and prettier, and when she was seven years old she was as beautiful as day, far more so than the queen herself. So one day when the queen went to her mirror and said,

"Looking-glass upon the wall,
Who is fairest of us all?"

It answered,

"Queen, you are full fair, 'tis true,
But Snow-white fairer is than you."

This gave the queen a great shock, and she became yellow and green with envy, and from that hour her heart turned against Snow-white, and she hated her. And envy and pride like ill weeds grew in her heart higher every day, until she had no peace day or night. At last she sent for a huntsman, and said, "Take the child out into the woods, so that I may set eyes on her no more. You must put her to death, and bring me her heart for a token." The huntsman consented, and led her away; but when he drew his cutlass to pierce Snow-white's innocent heart, she began to weep, and to say, "Oh, dear huntsman, do not take my life; I will go away into the wild wood, and never come home again." And as she was so lovely the huntsman had pity on her, and said, "Away with you then, poor child;" for he thought the wild animals would be sure to devour her, and it was as if a stone had been rolled away from his heart when he spared to put her to death. Just at that moment a young wild boar came running by, so he caught and killed it, and taking out its heart, he brought it to the queen for a token. And it was salted and cooked, and the wicked woman ate it up, thinking that there was an end of Snow-white.

Now, when the poor child found herself quite alone in the wild woods, she felt full of terror, even of the very leaves on the trees, and she did not know what to do for fright. Then she began to run over the sharp stones and through the thorn bushes, and the wild beasts after her, but they did her no harm. She ran as long as her feet would carry her; and when the evening drew near she came to a little house, and she went inside to rest. Everything there was very small, but as pretty and clean as possible. There stood the little table ready laid, and covered with a white cloth, and seven little plates, and seven knives and forks, and drinking-cups. By the wall stood seven little beds, side by side, covered with clean white quilts. Snow-white, being very hungry and thirsty, ate from each plate a little porridge and bread, and drank out of each little cup a drop of wine, so as not to finish up one portion alone. After that she felt so tired that she lay down on one of the beds, but it did not seem to suit her; one was too long, another too short, but at last the seventh was quite right; and so she lay down upon it, committed herself to heaven, and fell asleep.

When it was quite dark, the masters of the house came home. They were seven dwarfs, whose occupation was to dig underground among the mountains. When they had lighted their seven candles, and it was quite light in the little house, they saw that some one must have been in, as everything was not in the same order in which they left it. The first said, "Who has been sitting in my little chair?" The second said, "Who has been eating from my little plate?" The third said, "Who has been taking my little loaf?" The fourth said, "Who has been tasting my porridge?" The fifth said, "Who has been using my little fork?" The sixth said, "Who has been cutting with my little knife?" The seventh said, "Who has been drinking from my little cup?" Then the first one, looking round, saw a hollow in his bed, and cried, "Who has been lying on my bed?" And the others came running, and cried, "Some one has been on our beds too!" But when the seventh looked at his bed, he saw little Snow-white lying there asleep. Then he told the others, who came running up, crying out in their astonishment, and holding up their seven little candles to throw a light upon Snow-white. "O goodness! O gracious!" cried they, "what beautiful child is this?" and were so full of joy to see her that they did not wake her, but let her sleep on. And the seventh dwarf slept with his comrades, an hour at a time with each, until the night had passed. When it was morning, and Snow-white awoke and saw the seven dwarfs, she was very frightened; but they seemed quite friendly, and asked her what her name was, and she told them; and then they asked how she came to be in their house. And she related to them how her step-mother had wished her to be put to death, and how the huntsman had spared her life, and how she had run the whole day long, until at last she had found their little house. Then the dwarfs said, "If you will keep our house for us, and cook, and wash, and make the beds, and sew and knit, and keep everything tidy and clean, you may stay with us, and you shall lack nothing." - "With all my heart," said Snow-white; and so she stayed, and kept the house in good order. In the morning the dwarfs went to the mountain to dig for gold; in the evening they came home, and their supper had to be ready for them. All the day long the maiden was left alone, and the good little dwarfs warned her, saying, "Beware of your step-mother, she will soon know you are here. Let no one into the house." Now the queen, having eaten Snow-white's heart, as she supposed, felt quite sure that now she was the first and fairest, and so she came to her mirror, and said,

"Looking-glass upon the wall,
Who is fairest of us all?"

And the glass answered,

"Queen, thou art of beauty rare,
But Snow-white living in the glen
With the seven little men
Is a thousand times more fair."

Then she was very angry, for the glass always spoke the truth, and she knew that the huntsman must have deceived her, and that Snow-white must still be living. And she thought and thought how she could manage to make an end of her, for as long as she was not the fairest in the land, envy left her no rest. At last she thought of a plan; she painted her face and dressed herself like an old pedlar woman, so that no one would have known her. In this disguise she went across the seven mountains, until she came to the house of the seven little dwarfs, and she knocked at the door and cried, "Fine wares to sell! fine wares to sell!" Snow-white peeped out of the window and cried, "Good-day, good woman, what have you to sell?" - "Good wares, fine wares," answered she, "laces of all colours;"and she held up a piece that was woven of variegated silk. "I need not be afraid of letting in this good woman," thought Snow-white, and she unbarred the door and bought the pretty lace. "What a figure you are, child!" said the old woman, "come and let me lace you properly for once." Snow-white, suspecting nothing, stood up before her, and let her lace her with the new lace; but the old woman laced so quick and tight that it took Snow-white's breath away, and she fell down as dead. "Now you have done with being the fairest," said the old woman as she hastened away. Not long after that, towards evening, the seven dwarfs came home, and were terrified to see their dear Snow-white lying on the ground, without life or motion; they raised her up, and when they saw how tightly she was laced they cut the lace in two; then she began to draw breath, and little by little she returned to life. When the dwarfs heard what had happened they said, "The old pedlar woman was no other than the wicked queen; you must beware of letting any one in when we are not here!" And when the wicked woman got home she went to her glass and said,

"Looking-glass against the wall,
Who is fairest of us all?"

And it answered as before,

"Queen, thou art of beauty rare,
But Snow-white living in the glen
With the seven little men
Is a thousand times more fair."

When she heard that she was so struck with surprise that all the blood left her heart, for she knew that Snow-white must still be living. "But now," said she, "I will think of something that will be her ruin." And by witchcraft she made a poisoned comb. Then she dressed herself up to look like another different sort of old woman. So she went across the seven mountains and came to the house of the seven dwarfs, and knocked at the door and cried, "Good wares to sell! good wares to sell!" Snow-white looked out and said, "Go away, I must not let anybody in." - "But you are not forbidden to look," said the old woman, taking out the poisoned comb and holding it up. It pleased the poor child so much that she was tempted to open the door; and when the bargain was made the old woman said, "Now, for once your hair shall be properly combed." Poor Snow-white, thinking no harm, let the old woman do as she would, but no sooner was the comb put in her hair than the poison began to work, and the poor girl fell down senseless. "Now, you paragon of beauty," said the wicked woman, "this is the end of you," and went off. By good luck it was now near evening, and the seven little dwarfs came home. When they saw Snow-white lying on the ground as dead, they thought directly that it was the step-mother's doing, and looked about, found the poisoned comb, and no sooner had they drawn it out of her hair than Snow-white came to herself, and related all that had passed. Then they warned her once more to be on her guard, and never again to let any one in at the door. And the queen went home and stood before the looking-glass and said,

"Looking-glass against the wall,
Who is fairest of us all?"

And the looking-glass answered as before,

"Queen, thou art of beauty rare,
But Snow-white living in the glen
With the seven little men
Is a thousand times more fair."

When she heard the looking-glass speak thus she trembled and shook with anger. "Snow-white shall die," cried she, "though it should cost me my own life!" And then she went to a secret lonely chamber, where no one was likely to come, and there she made a poisonous apple. It was beautiful to look upon, being white with red cheeks, so that any one who should see it must long for it, but whoever ate even a little bit of it must die. When the apple was ready she painted her face and clothed herself like a peasant woman, and went across the seven mountains to where the seven dwarfs lived. And when she knocked at the door Snow-white put her head out of the window and said, "I dare not let anybody in; the seven dwarfs told me not." - "All right," answered the woman; "I can easily get rid of my apples elsewhere. There, I will give you one." - "No," answered Snow-white, "I dare not take anything." - "Are you afraid of poison?" said the woman, "look here, I will cut the apple in two pieces; you shall have the red side, I will have the white one." For the apple was so cunningly made, that all the poison was in the rosy half of it. Snow-white longed for the beautiful apple, and as she saw the peasant woman eating a piece of it she could no longer refrain, but stretched out her hand and took the poisoned half. But no sooner had she taken a morsel of it into her mouth than she fell to the earth as dead. And the queen, casting on her a terrible glance, laughed aloud and cried, "As white as snow, as red as blood, as black as ebony! this time the dwarfs will not be able to bring you to life again." And when she went home and asked the looking-glass,

"Looking-glass against the wall,
Who is fairest of us all?"

at last it answered,

"You are the fairest now of all."

Then her envious heart had peace, as much as an envious heart can have. The dwarfs, when they came home in the evening, found Snow-white lying on the ground, and there came no breath out of her mouth, and she was dead. They lifted her up, sought if anything poisonous was to be found, cut her laces, combed her hair, washed her with water and wine, but all was of no avail, the poor child was dead, and remained dead. Then they laid her on a bier, and sat all seven of them round it, and wept and lamented three whole days. And then they would have buried her, but that she looked still as if she were living, with her beautiful blooming cheeks. So they said, "We cannot hide her away in the black ground." And they had made a coffin of clear glass, so as to be looked into from all sides, and they laid her in it, and wrote in golden letters upon it her name, and that she was a king's daughter. Then they set the coffin out upon the mountain, and one of them always remained by it to watch. And the birds came too, and mourned for Snow-white, first an owl, then a raven, and lastly, a dove. Now, for a long while Snow-white lay in the coffin and never changed, but looked as if she were asleep, for she was still as' white as snow, as red as blood, and her hair was as black as ebony. It happened, however, that one day a king's son rode through the wood and up to the dwarfs' house, which was near it. He saw on the mountain the coffin, and beautiful Snow-white within it, and he read what was written in golden letters upon it. Then he said to the dwarfs, "Let me have the coffin, and I will give you whatever you like to ask for it." But the dwarfs told him that they could not part with it for all the gold in the world. But he said, "I beseech you to give it me, for I cannot live without looking upon Snow-white; if you consent I will bring you to great honour, and care for you as if you were my brethren." When he so spoke the good little dwarfs had pity upon him and gave him the coffin, and the king's son called his servants and bid them carry it away on their shoulders. Now it happened that as they were going along they stumbled over a bush, and with the shaking the bit of poisoned apple flew out of her throat. It was not long before she opened her eyes, threw up the cover of the coffin, and sat up, alive and well. "Oh dear! where am I?" cried she. The king's son answered, full of joy, "You are near me," and, relating all that had happened, he said, "I would rather have you than anything in the world; come with me to my father's castle and you shall be my bride." And Snow-white was kind, and went with him, and their wedding was held with pomp and great splendour. But Snow-white's wicked step-mother was also bidden to the feast, and when she had dressed herself in beautiful clothes she went to her looking-glass and said,

"Looking-glass upon the wall,
Who is fairest of us all?"

The looking-glass answered,

''O Queen, although you are of beauty rare,
The young bride is a thousand times more fair."

Then she railed and cursed, and was beside herself with disappointment and anger. First she thought she would not go to the wedding; but then she felt she should have no peace until she went and saw the bride. And when she saw her she knew her for Snow-white, and could not stir from the place for anger and terror. For they had ready red-hot iron shoes, in which she had to dance until she fell down dead.




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