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Main > Czechoslovak folktale > Fairy tale "The Golden Spinning-Wheel: The Story of King Dobromil and the Good Dobrunka"

The Golden Spinning-Wheel: The Story of King Dobromil and the Good Dobrunka

“Yes,” he said, “if I get what I want.”

“What do you want?”

“I want two eyes.”

“Two eyes?”

“Yes, two eyes. My father told me to accept nothing for it but two eyes. So I can’t sell it for money.”

The longer Zloboha looked at the spinning wheel the more beautiful it seemed to her and the more she wanted it. Suddenly she remembered Dobrunka’s eyes that she had hidden away.

“Mother,” she said, “as a queen I ought to have something no one else has. When the king comes home he will want me to spin, and just think how lovely I should look sitting at this golden wheel. Now we’ve got those eyes of Dobrunka’s. Let us exchange them for the golden spinning wheel. We’ll still have the hands and feet.”

The mother, who was as foolish as the daughter, agreed. So Zloboha got the eyes and gave them to the boy for the spinning wheel.

The boy hurried back to the forest and handed the eyes to the hermit. The old man took them and gently put them into place. Instantly Dobrunka could see.

The first thing she saw was the old hermit himself with his tall spare figure and long white beard. The last rays of the setting sun shone through the opening of the cave and lighted up his grave and gentle face. He looked to Dobrunka like one of God’s own saints.

“How can I ever repay you?” she said, “for all your loving kindness? Oh, that I could cover your hands with kisses!”

“Be quiet, my child,” the old man said. “If you are patient all will yet be well.”

He went out and soon returned with some delicious fruit on a wooden plate. This he carried over to the bed of leaves and moss upon which Dobrunka was lying and with his own hands he fed Dobrunka as a mother would feed her helpless child. Then he gave her a drink from a wooden cup.

Early the next morning the hermit again called three times and the boy came running at once. This time the hermit handed him a golden distaff and said:

“Take this distaff and go to the palace. Sit down in the courtyard near the gate. If any one asks you what you want for the distaff, say two feet and don’t exchange it for anything else.

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