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Main > Slavic Folktale > Fairy tale "The flying carpet, the invisible cap, the gold-giving ring and the smiting club"

The flying carpet, the invisible cap, the gold-giving ring and the smiting club

The parent bird said to his young ones:

“Come, children, sharpen claws and beak, krâk, krâk,

For here’s a feast not far to seek, krâk, krâk,

This young girl’s corse so white and sleek, krâk, krâk.”

One small bird at once settled down on the princess, but the fisherman seized it and took off his cap, so that he could be seen.

“Fisherman,” said the father raven, “let go my dear birdling and I will give you anything you want.”

“Then bring me some of the Life-Giving Water.”

The raven flew away and returned in about an hour, carrying in his beak a tiny bottle of the water. Then he again begged to have his nestling back.

“You shall have it as soon as I have proved that the water is of the right sort.”

So saying, he sprinkled the pale face of the princess. She sighed, opened her eyes, and blushing at the sight of a stranger, got up and said, “Where am I? Why, how soundly I have slept!”

“Lovely princess, your sleep might have lasted for ever.”

Then he told her his story, how he had been thrown into the river, abandoned in the Valley of Diamonds, and so on, relating at full length all the marvellous events that had taken place.

She listened attentively, then, thanking him for all he had done for her, placed her hand in his and said, “In the garden behind the palace is an apple-tree that bears golden fruit. A guzla that plays of its own accord hangs on its branches, and is guarded day and night by four negroes. Now the music from this guzla has the wonderful power of restoring health to invalids who listen to it, and happiness to those who are sad. That which is ugly becomes beautiful, and charms and enchantments of all kinds are broken and destroyed for ever.”

The fisherman put on his invisible cap and went into the garden in search of the negroes. Before going up to them he addressed the magic words to his golden ring, and after a short thunderstorm a shower of gold covered the ground. The negroes, greedy of wealth, threw themselves upon it, snatching from each other handfuls of the golden rain.

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