Read on line
Listen on line
Main > Ukrainian folktales > Fairy tale "The Story of Little Tsar Novishny, the False Sister, and the Faithful Beasts"

The Story of Little Tsar Novishny, the False Sister, and the Faithful Beasts

’ said he.––Then I promised him what I should find at home when I got there, for I never thought that God had blessed me so. Come now, my darling wife! and let us bury them both lest he take them!”––“Nay, nay! my dear husband, we had better hide them somewhere. Let us dig a ditch by our hut––just under the gables!” (For there were no lordly mansions in those days, and the Tsars dwelt in peasants’ huts.) So they dug a ditch right under the gables, and put their children inside it, and gave them provision of bread and water. Then they covered it up and smoothed it down, and turned into their own little hut.

Presently the serpent (for the Accursed One had changed himself into a serpent) came flying up in search of the children. He raged up and down outside the hut––but there was nothing to be seen. At last he cried out to the stove, “Stove, stove, where has the Tsar hidden his children?”––The stove replied, “The Tsar has been a good master to me; he has put lots of warm fuel inside me; I hold to him.”––So, finding he could get nothing out of the stove, he cried to the hearth-broom, “Hearth-broom, hearth-broom, where has the Tsar hidden his children?”––But the hearth-broom answered, “The Tsar has always been a good master to me, for he always cleans the warm grate with me; I hold to him.” So the Accursed One could get nothing out of the hearth-broom.––Then he cried to the hatchet, “Hatchet, hatchet, where has the Tsar hidden his children?”––The hatchet replied, “The Tsar has always been a good master to me. He chops his wood with me, and gives me a place to lie down in; so I’ll not have him disturbed.”––Then the Devil cried to the gimlet, “Gimlet, gimlet, where has the Tsar hidden his children?”––But the gimlet replied, “The Tsar has always been a good master to me. He drills little holes with me, and then lets me rest; so I’ll let him rest too.”––Then the serpent said to the gimlet, “So the Tsar’s a good master to thee, eh! Well, I can only say that if he’s the good master thou sayest he is, I am rather surprised that he knocks thee on the head so much with a hammer.

Also read
Read
The White Cat
Category: Andrew Lang
Read times: 5
Read
Read
The Terrible Head
Category: Andrew Lang
Read times: 18