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Main > Fairy tale > All authors > Andrew Lang > Fairy tale "The Goose-Girl"

The Goose-Girl

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Then a gust of wind blew Curdken's hat away, and he had to chase it over hill and dale. When he returned from the pursuit she had finished her combing and curling, and his chance of getting any hair was gone. Curdken was very angry, and wouldn't speak to her. So they herded the geese till evening and then went home.

The next morning, as they passed under the gate, the girl said:

"Oh! Falada, 'tis you hang there";

and the head replied:

" 'Tis you; pass under, Princess fair: If your mother only knew, Her heart would surely break in two."

Then she went on her way till she came to the common, where she sat down and began to comb out her hair; then Curdken ran up to her and wanted to grasp some of the hair from her head, but she called out hastily:

"Wind, wind, gently sway, Blow Curdken's hat away; Let him chase o'er field and wold Till my locks of ruddy gold, Now astray and hanging down, Be combed and plaited in a crown."

Then a puff of wind came and blew Curdken's hat far away, so that he had to run after it; and when he returned she had long finished putting up her golden locks, and he couldn't get any hair; so they watched the geese till it was dark.

But that evening when they got home Curdken went to the old King, and said: "I refuse to herd geese any longer with that girl." "For what reason?" asked the old King. "Because she does nothing but annoy me all day long," replied Curdken; and he proceeded to relate all her iniquities, and said: "Every morning as we drive the flock through the dark gate she says to a horse's head that hangs on the wall:

"`Oh! Falada, 'tis you hang there';

and the head replies:

"`'Tis you; pass under, Princess fair: If your mother only knew, Her heart would surely break in two.'"

And Curdken went on to tell what passed on the common where the geese fed, and how he had always to chase his hat.

The old King bade him go and drive forth his flock as usual next day; and when morning came he himself took up his position behind the dark gate, and heard how the goose-girl greeted Falada.

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