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Main > Russia folktales > Fairy tale "Seven Simeons"

Seven Simeons

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Then the king's vessel started from the island of Buzan. Numbers of cannon and warriors protected the princess, and the royal father remained quiet at home.

When they reached the merchants' ship the korolevna Helena came down, and at once the crystal bridge was placed and the korolevna with all her nurses and maidens went on board the foreign ship, such a ship as they had never seen before, never even dreamed of. Meanwhile the guards kept watch.

The seventh Simeon showed the lovely guests everywhere. He was talking smoothly while leisurely unfolding his precious goods. The korolevna listened attentively, looked around curiously, and seemed well pleased.

At the same moment the fourth Simeon, watching the proper moment, snapped the prow and down to mysterious depths went the ship where no one could see her. The people on the king's vessel screamed in terror, the warriors looked like drunken fools, and the guards only opened their eyes wider than before. What should they do? They directed the vessel back to the island and appeared before the king with their terrible tale.

"Oh, my daughter, my darling princess Helena! It is God who punishes me for my pride. I never wanted thee to marry. No king, no prince, would I consider worthy of thee; and now—oh! now I know that thou art wedded to the deep sea! As for me, I am left alone for the rest of my sorrowful days."

Then all at once he looked around and shouted to his men:

"You fools! what were you thinking about? You shall all lose your heads! Guards, throw them into dungeons! The most cruel death shall be theirs, such a death that the children of their great-grandchildren shall shiver to hear the tale!"

Now, while the king of Buzan raved and grieved, the ship of the brothers Simeon, like a golden fish, swam under the blue waters, and when the island was lost from sight the fourth Simeon brought her to the surface and she rose upon the waters like a white-winged gull. By this time the princess was becoming anxious about the long time they were away from home, and she exclaimed:

"Nurses and maidens, we are leisurely looking around, but I fancy my father the king finds the time sadly long.

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