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Main > Sweden folktales > Fairy tale "The Mount of the Golden Queen"

The Mount of the Golden Queen

Once upon a time a lad who tended the cattle in the wood was eating his noon-tide meal in a clearing in the forest. As he was sitting there he saw a rat run into a juniper-bush. His curiosity led him to look for it; but as he bent over, down he went, head over heels, and fell asleep. And he dreamed that he was going to find the princess on the Mount of the Golden Queen; but that he did not know the way.

The following day he once more pastured his cattle in the wood, when he came to the same clearing, and again ate his dinner there. And again he saw the rat and went to look for it, and again when he bent down he went head over heels, and fell fast asleep. And again he dreamed of the princess on the Mount of the Golden Queen, and that in order to get her he would need seventy pounds of iron and a pair of iron shoes. He awoke and it was all a dream; but by now he had made up his mind to find the Mount of the Golden Queen, and he went home with his herd. On the third day, when he led out his cattle, he could not reach the clearing of his happy dream too soon. Again the rat showed itself and when he went to look for it, he fell asleep as he had done each preceding day. And again he dreamed of the princess on the Mount of the Golden Queen, and that she came to him, and laid a letter and a band of gold in his pocket. Then he awoke and to his indescribable surprise, he found in his pocket both of the things of which he had dreamed, the letter and the band. Now he had no time to attend to the cattle any longer, but drove them straight home. Then he went into the stable, led out a horse, sold it, and bought seventy pounds of iron and a pair of iron shoes with the money. He made the thole-pins out of the iron, put on his iron shoes, and set forth. For a time he traveled by land; but at last he came to the lake which he had to cross. He saw naught but water before and behind him, and rowing so long and steadily that he wore out one thole-pin after another, he at length reached land, and a green meadow, where no trees grew.

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