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Main > Ukrainian folktales > Fairy tale "The Cat, the Cock, and the Fox"

The Cat, the Cock, and the Fox

There was once upon a time a cat and a cock, who agreed to live together, so they built them a hut on an ash-heap, and the cock kept house while the cat went foraging for sausages.

One day the fox came running up: “Open the door, little cock!” cried she.––“Pussy told me not to, little fox!” said the cock.––“Open the door, little cock!” repeated the fox.––“I tell you, pussy told me not to, little fox!”––At last, however, the cock grew tired of always saying “No!” so he opened the door, and in the fox rushed, seized him in her jaws, and ran off with him. Then the cock cried:

“Help! pussy-pussy!

That foxy hussy

Has got me tight

With all her might.

Across her tail

My legs do trail

Along the bridge so stony!”

The cat heard it, gave chase to the fox, rescued the cock, brought him home, scolded him well, and said, “Now keep out of her jaws in the future, if you don’t want to be killed altogether!”

Then the cat went out foraging for wheat, so that the cock might have something to eat. He had scarcely gone when the sly she-fox again came creeping up. “Dear little cock!” said she, “pray open the door!”––“Nay, little fox! Pussy said I wasn’t to.” But the fox went on asking and asking till at last the cock let him in. Then the fox rushed at him, seized him by the neck, and ran off with him. Then the cock cried out:

“Help! pussy-pussy!

That foxy hussy

Has got me tight

With all her might.

Across her tail

My legs do trail

Along the bridge so stony!”

The cat heard it, and again he ran after the fox and rescued the cock, and gave the fox a sound drubbing. Then he said to the cock, “Now, mind you never let her come in again, or she’ll eat you.”

But the next time the cat went out, the she-fox came again, and said, “Dear little cock, open the door!”––“No, little fox! Pussy said I wasn’t to.” But the fox begged and begged so piteously that, at last, the cock was quite touched, and opened the door. Then the fox caught him by the throat again, and ran away with him, and the cock cried:

“Help!

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