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Main > English folktales > Fairy tale "The well of the world's end"

The well of the world's end

Just then the frog popped up its head out of the Well of the World's

End, and said: "Remember your promise."

"All right," said the girl; for thought she, "what harm can a frog do me?"

So she went back to her stepmother, and brought the sieve full of water from the Well of the World's End. The stepmother was fine and angry, but she said nothing at all.

That very evening they heard something tap tapping at the door low down, and a voice cried out:

"Open the door, my hinny, my heart,

Open the door, my own darling;

Mind you the words that you and I spoke,

Down in the meadow, at the World's End Well."

"Whatever can that be?" cried out the stepmother, and the girl had to tell her all about it, and what she had promised the frog.

"Girls must keep their promises," said the stepmother. "Go and open the door this instant." For she was glad the girl would have to obey a nasty frog.

So the girl went and opened the door, and there was the frog from the Well of the World's End. And it hopped, and it skipped, and it jumped, till it reached the girl, and then it said:

"Lift me to your knee, my hinny, my heart;

Lift me to your knee, my own darling;

Remember the words you and I spoke,

Down in the meadow by the World's End Well."

But the girl didn't like to, till her stepmother said "Lift it up this instant, you hussy! Girls must keep their promises!"

So at last she lifted the frog up on to her lap, and it lay there for a time, till at last it said:

"Give me some supper, my hinny, my heart,

Give me some supper, my darling;

Remember the words you and I spake,

In the meadow, by the Well of the World's End."

Well, she didn't mind doing that, so she got it a bowl of milk and bread, and fed it well. And when the frog, had finished, it said:

"Go with me to bed, my hinny, my heart,

Go with me to bed, my own darling;

Mind you the words you spake to me,

Down by the cold well, so weary."

But that the girl wouldn't do, till her stepmother said: "Do what you promised, girl; girls must keep their promises.

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