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White Bear Who Comes for His Princess

I gave the princess the golden wreath on the condition that she would come away with me. And so, after three days, on a Thursday, I walked out of the forest to go and get her. The king had his whole army standing guard round the castle, but no soldier could stand...

Fairy Leader

We often gather in the mossy dell shaded by spreading pine-trees. We've got a magic mallet that we keep under a stone, and it can produce anything we wish for, so there's no end to our delight. We want for nothing! Then one day when we came tripping into the dell,...

Boy in a Haunted Temple

I set off into the world in search of an adventure. I didn’t want to return until I had done some great deed that made my name famous. For a long time, I met nothing but a wild mountain, half-covered in dense forest. I made my way over huge rocks, and crossed wide,...

Wild Man

I set the boy down in the forest and told him he’d never see his parents again. But he had set me free from the cage, so I meant him no harm. On the contrary, I promised him a good life if he did what he was told. I made him a bed of moss and he slept well. At dawn, I...

Queen Who Keeps the Wild Man

My husband and I were amazed to see the wild man that the huntsman caught. His body was red-brown like rusty iron, and his hair hung down over his face and down to his knees. My husband put him in a cage in the courtyard. He gave me the key and I kept it under my...

Seal Woman

He has taken my pelt so I must marry him or freeze to death. I will go to that cold place. I will raise the children and assume the role of a domesticated person. But I will return to the wild one day. And the wild will return to me. The Seal Woman in Sealskin, from...

Flower-Wreathed Princess

I leave home, riding on the back of a white wolf. When we stop to rest in the forest, he asks me, "What would your father do if this forest belonged to him?" "He would cut down the trees and turn it into a beautiful park and gardens, and he and his courtiers would...

Youth Who Speaks with Wild Dogs

The lord of the castle permits me to stay overnight in the old tower, but he warns me that it is full of wild dogs. They bark without stopping, and will devour a man in the wee hours. I have no fear of dogs because I know their language. I ask the lord of the castle...