The Story Finder

Voices in Fairy Tales

by Michelle Tocher

Story finder - Curly

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Glass Hill

I’m a high, high, glass mountain, slippery as ice, standing close to the king’s palace. On my peak sits a princess with three golden apples on her lap. The man who can ride up and take those apples will win her hand in marriage, and half the kingdom too.

The Princess is very beautiful, and everyone who sees an image of her falls violently in love. Needless to say, all the princes and knights in the country are eager to win her and half the kingdom besides. They come riding here from every part of the earth. Their raiments gleam in the sunshine, and their horses seem to dance as they approach.

Not a single one of these princes does not think that he is sure to win the princess.

But when they try to ride up my slopes, their horses go into a foam. No sooner do they set their hooves on me than they slip, and down they go. Not a single one can get even so much as a couple of yards up.

My flanks are as smooth as a glass window-pane, and as steep as the side of a house.

The Glass Hill in The Princess on the Glass Hill, Blue Fairy Book. Vintage illustration, artist unknown.

Glass Hill