Stories from Hans Andersen

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_THE SNOW QUEEN_ PAGE One day he was in a high state of delight because he had invented a mirror 5

Many a winter's night she flies through the streets 11

Then an old, old woman came out of the house 23

She has read all the newspapers in the world, and forgotten them again, so clever is she 37

'It is gold, it is gold!' they cried 51

Kissed her on the mouth, while big shining tears trickled down its face 63

The Snow Queen sat in the very middle of it when she sat at home 71


Even the poor fisherman ... lay still to listen to it 81

'Is it possible?' said the gentleman-in-waiting. 'I should never have thought it was like that' 89

Took some water into their mouths to try and make the same gurgling, ... thinking so to equal the nightingale 95

The music-master wrote five-and-twenty volumes about the artificial bird 101

Even Death himself listened to the song 109


'I have hardly closed my eyes the whole night! Heaven knows what was in the bed. I seemed to be lying upon some hard thing, and my whole body is black and blue this morning. It is terrible!' _Frontispiece_


His grandmother had told him ... that every flower in the Garden of Paradise was a delicious cake 117

The Eastwind flew more swiftly still 131

The Fairy of the Garden now advanced to meet them 139

The Fairy dropped her shimmering garment, drew back the branches, and a moment after was hidden within their depths 147


The Merman King had been for many years a widower 155

He must have died if the little mermaid had not come to the rescue 169

At the mere sight of the bright liquid 183

The prince asked who she was and how she came there 189

Dashed overboard and fell, her body dissolving into foam 199


The poor old minister stared as hard as he could, but he could not see anything 209

Then the Emperor walked along in the procession under the gorgeous canopy, and everybody in the streets and at the windows exclaimed, 'How beautiful the Emperor's new clothes are!' 215


She played upon the ringing lute, and sang to its tones 225

She was always picking flowers and herbs 233

He lifted it with a trembling hand and shouted with a trembling voice: 'Gold! gold!' 241

Waldemar Daa hid it in his bosom, took his staff in his hand, and, with his three daughters, the once wealthy gentleman walked out of Borreby Hall for the last time 247





[Illustration: _One day he was in a high state of delight because he had invented a mirror with this peculiarity, that every good and pretty thing reflected in it shrank away to almost nothing._]

Now we are about to begin, and you must attend; and when we get to the end of the story, you will know more than you do now about a very wicked hobgoblin. He was one of the worst kind; in fact he was a real demon. One day he was in a high state of delight because he had invented a mirror with this peculiarity, that every good and pretty thing reflected in it shrank away to almost nothing. On the other hand, every bad and good-for-nothing thing stood out and looked its worst. The most beautiful landscapes reflected in it looked like boiled spinach, and the best people became hideous, or else they were upside down and had no bodies. Their faces were distorted beyond recognition, and if they had even one freckle it appeared to spread all over the nose and mouth. The demon thought this immensely amusing. If a good thought passed through any one's mind, it turned to a grin in the mirror, and this caused real delight to the demon. All the scholars in the demon's school, for he kept a school, reported that a miracle had taken place: now for the first time it had become possible to see what the world and mankind were really like. They ran about all over with the mirror, till at last there was not a country or a person which had not been seen in this distorting mirror. They even wanted to fly up to heaven with it to mock the angels; but the higher they flew, the more it grinned, so much so that they could hardly hold it, and at last it slipped out of their hands and fell to the earth, shivered into hundreds of millions and billions of bits. Even then it did more harm than ever. Some of these bits were not as big as a grain of sand, and these flew about all over the world, getting into people's eyes, and, once in, they stuck there, and distorted everything they looked at, or made them see everything that was amiss. Each tiniest grain of glass kept the same power as that possessed by the whole mirror. Some people even got a bit of the glass into their hearts, and that was terrible, for the heart became like a lump of ice. Some of the fragments were so big that they were used for window panes, but it was not advisable to look at one's friends through these panes. Other bits were made into spectacles, and it was a bad business when people put on these spectacles meaning to be just. The bad demon laughed till he split his sides; it tickled him to see the mischief he had done. But some of these fragments were still left floating about the world, and you shall hear what happened to them.

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