The Wild Swans

 The Wild Swans

far away in the land to which the swallows fly when it is winter, there was the king

who had 11 sons and one daughter named Eliza; the 11 brothers were princes,

and each went to school with a star on his breast and a sword by his side.

They rowed with diamond pencils on gold slates and learned the lesson so quickly

and read so easily that everyone might know they were princes their sister Eliza sent

on a little stool, a plate-glass, and a book full of pictures which had cost as much

as half a kingdom, oh these children were indeed happy, but it was not to remain so

always their father, who was king of the country, married a very wicked queen who did

not love the poor children at all; they knew this from the very first day after the wedding

in the palace; there were great festivities, and the children played at receiving company,

but instead of having, as usual, all the cakes and apples that were left, she gave them

some sand in a teacup and told them to pretend it was cake the week after she sent

little Eliza into the country to a peasant and his wife, and then she told the King

so many untrue things about the young princes that he gave himself no more trouble

respecting them go out into the world and get your own living, said the Queen flying

like great birds who have no voice, but she cannot make them as ugly as she wished

for; they were turned into eleven beautiful wild swans. Then, with a strange cry,

they flew through the windows of the palace over the park to the forest beyond; it was

early morning when they passed the peasant’s cottage where their sister Eliza lay

asleep, and the room they hovered over the roof, twisted their long necks, and flapped

their wings, but no one heard them or saw them, so they were at last obliged to fly

away high up in the clouds and over the wide world, they flew till they came to a thick

dark wood, which stretched far away to the seashore, poor little Eliza was alone

in a room playing with a green leaf, for she had no other playthings, and she appears

to hold through the leaf and look through it at the Sun, and it was as if she saw her

brothers’ clear eyes, and when the warm Sun shone on her cheeks, she thought of all

the kisses they had given her one day passed just like another; sometimes, the winds

rustled through the leaves of the rosebush and would whisper to the roses who could

be more beautiful than you, but the roses would shake their heads and say Eliza is

and when the old woman sat at the cottage door on Sunday and read her hymn book

the wind would flutter the leaves and say to the book who can be more pious than you

and then the hymn book would answer Eliza and the Roses in the hymn book told

the real truth is that at 15, she returned home, but when the Queen saw how beautiful

she was, she became full of spite and hatred towards her willingly, which he had turned

her into a swan like her brothers, but she did not dare to do so yet because the King

wished to see his daughter early one morning; the Queen went into the bathroom;

it was built  of marble; it had soft cushions trimmed with the most beautiful tapestry;

she took three toads with her and kissed them, and said to one:

“When Eliza comes to the bath, seat yourself on her head that she may become as stupid as you are” Then she said to another, “Place yourself on her forehead that she may become as ugly as you are and that her father may not know her,” “rest on her heart” she whispered to the third “then she will have evil inclinations and suffering consequence.”

So she put the toads into the clear water, and they turned green immediately; she next

called Eliza and helped her to undress and get into the bath. As Eliza dipped her head

under the water, one of the toads said her hair a second on her forehead and a third

on her breast, but she did not seem to notice them, and when she rose out of the water,

there were three red poppies floating upon it. Had not the creatures been venomous

or been kissed by the witch, they would have been changed into red roses at all events;

they became flowers because they had rested on Eliza’s head and on her heart;

she was too good and too innocent for witchcraft to have any power over her; when

the Wicked Queen saw this; she rubbed her face with walnut juice so that she was

quite brown, and then she tangled her beautiful hair and smeared it with disgusting

ointment till it was quite impossible to recognize the beautiful Eliza; when her father

saw her, he was much shocked and declared she was not his daughter no one but

the watchdog and the swallows knew her, and they were only poor animals and could

say nothing; then poor Eliza wept and thought of her eleven brothers, who were all

away sorrowful II, she stole away from the palace and walked the whole day over fields

and moors till she came to the great forest; she knew not in what direction to go,

but she was so unhappy and longed so for her brothers who had been like herself

driven out into the world that she was determined to seek them; she had been but

a short time in the wood when night came on, and she quite lost the path, so she laid

herself down on the soft moss, offered up her evening prayer and leaned her head

against the stump of a tree, all nature was still, and the soft mild air fanned her

forehead; the light of hundreds of glowworms shone amidst the grass and

the moss-like green fire, and she touched a twig with her hand ever so lightly;

the brilliant insects fell down around her like shooting stars all night long

she dreamt of her brothers, and they were children again playing together; she saw

them riding with their diamond pencils on golden slates while she looked

at the beautiful picture book, which had cost half a kingdom; they were not writing

lines and letters as they used to do but descriptions of the noble deeds they had

performed, and of all they had discovered and seen in the picture book – everything

was living, the birds sang, and the people came out of the book and spoke to Eliza

and her brothers, but as the leaves turned over, they darted back again to the places

where all might be in order; when she awoke, the Sun was high in the heavens,

yet she could not see him, for the lofty trees spread their branches thickly over her

head, but his beams were glancing through the leaves here and there like a golden

mist, there was a sweet fragrance from the fresh green Verger, and the birds almost

perched upon her shoulders, she heard water rippling from a number of springs

all flowing in a lake with golden sands bushes growing thickly around the lake,

and it went spot an opening had been made by a deer through which Eliza went down

to the water, the lake was so clear that had not the wind rustled the branches

of the trees and the bushes so that they moved, they would have appeared as if

painted in the depths of the lake for every leaf was reflected in the water whether

it stood in the shade of the sunshine; as soon as Eliza saw her own face, she was quite

terrified at finding it so brown and ugly, but when she wedded her little hand

and rubbed her eyes and forehead; the white skin gleamed forth once more, and after

she had undressed and dipped herself in the freshwater of a more beautiful king’s

daughter could not be found in the wide world as soon as she had dressed herself

again and braided her long hair; she went to the bubbling spring and drinks some

water out of the hollow of her hand, then she wandered far into the forest,

not knowing whither she went, she thought of her brothers and felt sure that God had

not forsaken her, it is God who makes the wild apples grow in the wood to satisfy

the hungry, and he now led her to one of these trees, which was so loaded with fruit

that the boughs bent beneath the weight he or she held her noonday repast place

props under the boughs and then went into the gloomiest depths of the forest; it was

so still that she could hear the sound of her own footsteps as well as the wrestling

of every withered leaf which she crushed under her feet, not a bird was to be seen

not a sunbeam could penetrate through the large dark boughs of the trees; their lofty

trunk stood so close together that when she looked before her, it seemed as if

they were enclosed within trellis-work such solitude she had never known before;

the night was very dark; not a single glowworm glittered in the moss sorrowfully

she laid herself down to sleep, and after a while, it seemed to her as if the branches

of the trees parted overhead and that the mild eyes of angels looked down upon her

from heaven when she awoke in the morning, she knew not whether she had dreamt

this or if it has really been so; then she continued her wandering, but she had not

gone many steps forward when she met an old woman with berries in her basket,

and she gave her a few to eat; then Eliza asked her if she had not seen eleven princes

riding through the forest, no replied the old woman, but I saw yesterday eleven swans

with gold crowns on their heads swimming on a river close behind; then she led Eliza

a little distance further to a sloping Bank and at the foot of it wound a little River;

the trees on its banks stretched their long leafy branches across the water towards

each other, and where the growth prevented them from eating naturally, the roots had

torn themselves away from the ground so that the branches might mingle their foliage

as they hung over the water, Eliza bade the old woman farewell and walked

by the flowing river till she reached the shore of the open sea, and there before

the young maiden’s eyes lay the glorious ocean, but not a sail appeared on the surface;

not even a boat could be seen; how was she to go farther? She noticed how

the countless pebbles on the seashore had been smooth and rounded by the action

of the water glass iron stones, everything that lay there mingled together had taken

its shape from the same power and felt as smooth or even smoother than her own

delicate hand, “the water rolls on without weariness,” she said, “till all that is hard becomes smooth, so will I be unwary to my task; thanks for your lessons, bright rolling waves, my heart tells me that you will lead me to my dear brothers.”

on the foam-covered seaweeds lay 11 white Swan feathers which she gathered up

and placed together, drops of water lay upon them whether they were dewdrops;

her tears, no one could say lonely as it was on the seashore; she did not observe it,

for the ever-moving sea showed more changes in a few hours than the most varying

Lake could produce during a whole year if a black heavy cloud arose. It was as if

the sea said I could look dark and angry – and then the wind blew, and the waves

turned to white foam. Izzy rolled when the wind slept, and the clouds glowed with

the red  sunlight, then the sea looked like a rose leaf, but however quietly it’s white

glassy surface rested, there was still emotion on the shore as its waves rose and fell

like the breasts of a sleeping child; when the Sun was about to set, Eliza saw eleven

white swans with golden crowns on their heads, flying towards the land, one behind

the other like a long white ribbon, then Eliza went down the slope from the shore

and hid behind the bushes; the Swans alighted quite close to her and flapped

their great white wings as soon as the Sun had disappeared under the water,

the feathers of the Swans fell off, and eleven beautiful princes. Eliza’s brothers stood

near her; she uttered a loud cry, for although they were very much changed, she knew

them immediately; she sprang into their arms and called them each by name, then how

happy the princes were at meeting their little sister again, for they recognized her

although she had grown so tall and beautiful, they laughed, and they wept and very

soon understood how wickedly their mother had acted on them all,

“we, brothers,” said the eldest, “fly about his Wild Swans so long as the Sun is in the sky, but as soon as it sinks behind the hills, we recover our human shape; therefore, we must always be near a resting place for our feet before sunset for if we should be flying towards the clouds at the time we recovered our natural shape as men we should sink deep into the sea we do not dwell here but in a land just as fair that lies beyond the ocean which we have to cross for a long distance there is no island in our passage upon which we could pass the night nothing but a little rock rising out of the sea upon which we can scarcely stand with safety even closely crowded together if the sea is rough the foam – is over us yet we thank God even for this rock we have passed whole nights upon it or we should never have reached our beloved father and for our flight across the sea occupied two of the longest days in the year we have permission to visit our home once in every year and to remain 11 days during which we fly across the forest to look once more at the palace where our Father dwells and where we were born and at the church where our mother lies buried, here it seems as if the very trees and bushes were related to us, the wild horses leap over the plains as we have seen them in our childhood, the charcoal burners sing the old songs to which we have danced as children, this is our fatherland to which we are drawn by loving ties, and here we have found you, our dear little sister; two days longer we can remain here, and then we must fly away to a beautiful land which is not our home and how can we take you with us we have neither ship nor boat”

“how can I break this spell?” said their sister, and then she talked about it nearly

the whole night only slumbering for a few hours, Eliza was awakened by the rustling

of the Swan’s wings as they soared above, her brothers were again changed to swans,

and they flew in circles wider and wider till they were far away but one of them,

the youngest Swan remained behind and laid his head in his sister’s lap while

she stroked his wings, and they remained together the whole day.

Towards evening the rest came back, and as the Sun went down, they resumed their

natural forms.

“Tomorrow,” said one, “we shall fly away, not to return again until a whole year has passed, but we cannot leave you here, have you the courage to go with us? My arm is strong enough to carry you through the wood, and will not all our wings be strong enough to fly with you over the sea.”

“yes, take me with you,” said Eliza;

then they spent the whole night weaving a net with the pliant willow in rushes; it was

very large and strong, Eliza laid herself down on the net, and when the Sun rose,

and her brothers again became wild swans; they took up the net with their beaks,

and they flew up to the clouds with their dear sister, who still slept; the sunbeams fell

on her face, therefore one of the Swans soared over her head so that his broad wings

might shade her; they were far from the land; when Eliza woke, she thought she must

still, be dreaming; it seemed so strange to her to feel herself being carried so high

in the air over the sea by her side lay a branch full of beautiful ripe berries and a bundle

of sweet roots, the youngest of her brothers had gathered them for her and placed

them by ur side, she smiled her thanks to him; she knew it was the same who had

hovered over her to shade her with his wings; they were now so high that a large ship

beneath him looked like a white seagull skimming the waves; a great cloud floating

behind them appeared a vast mountain, and upon it, Eliza saw her own shadow

and those of the eleven swans looking gigantic in size together; it formed a more

beautiful picture than she had ever seen, but as the Sun rose higher and the clouds

were left behind, the shadowy picture vanished away onward the whole day; they flew

through the air like a winged arrow yet more slowly than usual, for they had their sister

to carry the weather seemed inclined to be stormy, and Eliza watched the sinking Sun

with great anxiety for the Little Rock in the ocean was not yet in sight; it appeared

to her as if the Swans were making great efforts with her wings; alas, she was

the cause of their not advancing more quickly.

When the Sun said they would change him in fall into the sea and be drowned,

then she offered a prayer from her inmost heart, but still no appearance of the rock;

dark clouds came near the gusts of wind told of a coming storm while from a thick

the heavy mass of clouds, the lightning burst forth flash after flash; the Sun had

reached the edge of the sea when the swans darted down so swiftly that Eliza’s head

trembled, she believed they were falling, but they again soared onward.

Presently she caught sight of the rock just below them, and by this time, the Sun

was half hidden by the waves, the rock did not appear larger than the seal’s head thrust

out of the water.

They sunk so rapidly that at the moment their feet touched the rock, it shone only like

a star and at last disappeared like the last spark and a piece of burnt paper, then

she saw her brother standing closely around her with their arms linked together,

there was but just room enough for them and not the smallest space to spare, the sea

dashed against the rock and covered them with spray, the heavens were lighted up

with content who flashes and peal after peal of thunder ruled, but the sister

and brother still holding each other’s hands and singing hymns from which they gained

hope and courage.

In the early dawn, the air became calm and still, and it’s sunrise, the Swans flew away

from the rock with Eliza, the sea was still rough, and from their high position in the air,

the white foam on the dark green waves looked like millions of swans swimming

on the water; as the Sun rose higher, Eliza saw before her floating in the air a range

of mountains was shining masses of ice on their summits in the center, rose a castle

apparently a mile long with rows of columns rising one above another while around it

palm trees waved, and flowers bloomed as large as Mill wills. She asked if this was

the land to which they were hastening, the Swan shook their heads for what she beheld

were the beautiful ever-changing cloud palaces of the FATA Morgana into which

no mortal can enter. Eliza was still gazing at the scene when mountains, forests,

and castles melted away, and twenty stately churches rose in their stead with high

towers and pointed gothic windows. Eliza even fancied she could hear the tones

of the organ, but it was the music of the murmuring sea which she heard as they drew

nearer to the churches, they also changed into a fleet of ships that seemed to be

sailing beneath her, but as she looked again, she found it was only a sea mist gliding

over the ocean, so there continued to pass before her eyes a constant change of scene

till at last, she saw the real land to which they were bound with its Blue Mountains,

its cedar forests, and its cities and palaces.

Long before the Sun went down, she sat on a rock in front of a large cave on the floor

of which the overgrown yet delicate green creeping plants looked like an embroidered


“Now we shall expect to hear what you dream of tonight,” said the youngest brother as he showed his sister her bedroom

“Heaven grant that I may dream how to save you,” she replied

and this thought took such hold upon her mind that she prayed earnestly to God

for help, and even in her sleep, she continued to pray. Then it appeared to her as if

she was flying high in the air towards the cloudy palace of the thought that Morgana

and a fairy came out to meet her radiant and beautiful in appearance and yet very

much like the old woman who had given her berries in the wood and who had told her

of the Swans with the golden crowns on their heads,

“your brothers can be released,” said she. “If you have only courage and perseverance, true water is softer than your own delicate hands, and yet it polishes stones into shapes; it feels no pain as your fingers would feel it has no soul. I cannot suffer such agony and torment as you will have to endure. Do you see the stinging nettle which I hold in my hand quantities of the same sort grow around the cave in which you sleep, but none will be of any use to you unless they grow upon the graves in a churchyard; these you must gather even while they burned Lister’s on your hands, break them to pieces with your hands and feet, and it will become flax from which you must spin and weave eleven coats with long sleeves if these are then thrown over the eleven swans the spell will be broken, but remember that from the moment you commence your task until it is finished even should it occupy years of your life you must not speak. The first word you utter will pierce through the hearts of your brother’s like a deadly dagger; their lives hang upon your tongue; remember all I have told you.”

And as she finished speaking, she touched her hand lightly with the nettle at a pain

as of burning fire awoke Eliza; it was broad daylight and close by where she had been

sleeping Leah nettle like the one she had seen in her dream, she fell on her knees

and offered her thanks to God; then, she went forth from the cave to begin her work.

With her delicate hands, she groped in amongst the ugly nettles which burnt great

blisters on her hands and arms, but she determined to bear it gladly if only she could

release her dear brothers, so she bruised the nettles with her bare feet and spun

the flax, at sunset, her brothers returned and were very much frightened when they

found her dumb, they believed it to be some new sorcery of their wick stepmother

but when they saw her hands, they understood what she was doing on their behalf

and the youngest brother wept, and where his tears fell, the pain ceased,

and the burning blisters were banished. She kept to her work all night so she could

not rest till she had released her dear brothers, during the whole of the following day

while her brothers were absent, she sat in solitude, but never before had the time

flown so quickly. One coat was already finished, and she began the second when

she heard the Huntsman’s horn and was struck with fear; the sound came nearer

and nearer, she heard the dogs barking and fled with terror into the cave; she hastily

bound together the Nettles she had gathered into a bundle and set upon them.

Immediately a great dog came bounding towards her out of the ravine, and then

another and another, they barked loudly, ran back, and then came again in a very few

minutes all the Huntsman stood before the cave, and the most handsome of them

was the king of the country, he advanced towards her for he had never seen a more

beautiful maiden.

“How did you come here, my sweet child?” he asked, but Eliza shook her head,

she dared not speak at the cost of her brothers’ lives, and she hid her hands under

her apron so that the King might not see how she must be suffering,

“come with me,” he said. “Here you cannot remain if you are as good as you are beautiful; I will dress you in silk and velvet, I will place a golden crown upon your head, and you shall dwell and rule and make your home in my richest castle,

and then he lifted her on his horse; she wept and wrung her hands, but the king said

I wish only for your happiness; a time will come when you will thank me for this,”

and then he galloped away over the mountains, holding her before him on his horse

and the hunters followed behind them. As the Sun went down, they approached a fair

Royal City with churches and couplers; on arriving at the castle, the King let her into

marble halls where large fountains played and where the walls and ceilings were

covered with rich paintings, but she had no eyes for all these glorious sights she could

only mourn and weep patiently, she allowed the women to array her in a royal robe

to weave pearls in her hair and to draw soft gloves over her blistered fingers.

As she stood before them in all her rich dress, she looked so dazzlingly beautiful

that the court bowed low in her presence, then the King declared his intention

of making her his bride, but the archbishop shook his head and whispered that the fair

the young maiden was only a witch who had blinded the King’s eyes and bewitched

his heart, but the King would not listen to this; he ordered the music to sound

the daintiest dishes to be served and the loveliest maidens to dance. Afterward

he led her through fragrant gardens and lofty halls, but not a smile appeared on her

lips or sparkled in her eyes, she looked the very picture of grief.

Then the King opened the door of a little chamber in which she was to sleep; it was

adorned with rich green tapestry and resembled the cave in which he had found

her on the floor lay the bundle of flax which he had spun from the nettles and under

the ceiling hung the coach she had made.

“These things had been brought away from the cave as curiosities by one of the Huntsman; here, you can dream yourself back again in the old home in the cave,” said the king. “Here is the work with which you employed yourself. It will amuse you now in the midst of all this splendor to think of that time.”

When Eliza saw all these things which lay so near her heart, a smile played around

her mouth, and the Crimson blood rushed to her cheeks; she thought of her brothers

and the relief made her so joyful that she kissed the King’s hand then he pressed her

to his heart. Very soon that joyous church bells announced the marriage feast

and that the beautiful dumb girl out of the wood was to be made the queen

of the country, then the archbishop whispered wicked words in the King’s ear,

but they did not sink into his heart.

The marriage was still to take place, and the archbishop himself had to place

the crown on the bride’s head; in his wicked spite, he pressed the narrow circlet

so tightly on her forehead that it caused her pain but a heavier weight encircled

her heart sorrow for her brother, she felt no bodily pain; her mouth was closed

a single word would cost the lives of her, but she loved the kind, handsome King

who did everything to make her happy more and more each day; she loved him with all

her heart and her eyes beamed with the love she dared not speak; oh, if she had only

been able to confide in him and tell him of her grief but dumb she must remain till

her task was finished, therefore at night, she crept away into her little chamber

which had been decked out to look like the cave and quickly whoa of one coat

after another, but when she began the seventh, she found she had no more plaques

she knew that the nettle she wanted to use grew in the churchyard and that she must

pluck them herself; how should she get out there?

Oh, what is the pain in my fingers  to the torment which my heart and doors,” said she
“I must
venture; I shall not be denied help from heaven.”

then with a trembling heart as if she were about to perform a wicked deed, she crept

into the garden in the broad moonlight and passed through the narrow walks

and the deserted streets till she reached the churchyard; then, she saw one

of the broad tombstones, a group of ghouls; these hideous creatures took off the rags

as if they intended to bathe and then cling open the fresh graves with their long skinny

fingers pulled out the dead bodies and ate the flesh. Eliza had to pass close by them

and they fixed their wicked glances upon her, but she prayed silently, gathered

the burning nettles and carried them home with her to the castle; one person only had

seen her, and that was the archbishop; he was awake while everybody was asleep.

Now he thought his opinion was evidently correct “All was not right with the Queen

she was a witch and had bewitched the king and all the people,”

secretly he told the King what he had seen and what he feared, and as the hard words

came from his tongue, the carved images of the saints shook their heads as if

they would say it is not so Eliza is innocent, but the archbishop interpreted it in another

the way he believed that they witnessed against her and were shaking their heads

at her wickedness, two large tears rolled down the King’s cheeks, and he went home

with doubt in his heart, and at night, he pretended to sleep, but there came no real 

sleep to his eyes, for he saw Eliza get up every night and disappear into her own 

chamber from day to day, his brow became darker, and Eliza saw it and did not 

understand the reason, but it alarmed her and made her heart tremble for her brother’s 

hot tears glittered like pearls on the regal velvet and diamonds while all who saw her 

were wishing they could be queens; in the meantime, she had almost finished her task,

only one coat of mail was wanting, but she had no flax left and not a single nettle once

more only and for the last time must she ventured to the churchyard and pluck a few

handfuls, she thought with terror, the solitary walk and of the horrible ghouls, but her

will was firm, as well as her trust in Providence Eliza went, and the king

and the archbishop followed her; they saw her vanish through the wicked gate into

the churchyard, and when they came nearer, they saw the ghouls sitting

on the tombstone, as Eliza had seen them, and the King turned away his head for

he thought she was with them, she whose head had rested on his breast,

“that very evening, the people must condemn her,” said he, and she was very quickly

condemned by everyone to suffer death by fire away from the gorgeous regal halls

was she led to a dark, dreary cell where the wind whistled through the iron bars instead

of the velvet and silk dresses, they gave her the coats of mail which she had woven

to cover her and the bundle of nettles for a pillow, but nothing they could give her

would have pleased her more, she continued her task with joy and prayed for help

while the street boys sang cheering songs about her, and not a soul comforted her with

a kind word towards evening; she heard at the grating the flutter of a swans wing;

it was her youngest brother; he had found his sister, and she sobbed for joy although

she knew that very likely this would be the last night she would have to live, but she still

she could hope for her task was almost finished and her brothers had come then

the archbishop arrived to be with her during her last hours as he had promised the king

but she shook her head and begged him by looks and gestures not to stay for

On this night, she knew she must finish her task; otherwise, all her pain and tears

and sleepless nights would have been suffered in vain.

The archbishop withdrew, uttering bitter words against her, but poor Eliza knew that

she was innocent and diligently continued her work; the little mice ran about the floor

they dragged the nettles to her feet to help as well as they could, and the Thresh sat

outside the grating of the window and sing to her the whole night long as sweetly as

possible to keep up her spirits; it was still Twilight and at least an hour before sunrise

when the eleven brothers stood at the castle gate and demanded to be brought before

the king they were told it could not be; it was yet almost night, and as the king slept

they dared not disturb him; they threatened; they entreated then the guard appeared

and even the king himself inquiring what all the noise meant at this moment; the Sun

rose, the eleven brothers were seen no more, but eleven Wild Swans flew away over

the castle, and now all the people came streamed forth from the gates of the city

to see the witch burnt, an old horse drew the car to which she sat; they had dressed

her in a garment, of course, sackcloth, her lovely hair hung loose on her shoulders her

cheeks were deadly pale; her lips moved silently while her fingers still worked

at the green flax, even on the way to death, she would not give up her task; the ten

coats of mail lay at her feet; she was working hard at the 11th while the mob jeered her

and said, “See the witch how she mutters, she has no hymn-book in her hand, she sits there with her ugly sorcery, let us tear it in a thousand pieces.”

And then they pressed towards her and would have destroyed the coats of mail

but at the same moment, eleven Wild Swans flew over her and lit it on the cart

then they flapped their large wings in the crowd and drew on one side an alarm

“it is a sign from heaven that she is innocent,” whispered many of them

but they ventured not to say it aloud as the executioner seized her by the hand to lift

her out of the cart, she hastily threw the eleven coats male over the swans

and they immediately became eleven handsome princes, but the youngest had

a swans wing instead of an arm, for she had not been able to finish the last sleeve

of the coat

“Now I may speak,” she exclaimed. “I am innocent,”

then the people who saw what happened bowed to her as before a saint, but she sank

lifeless, and her brother’s arms are overcome with suspense, anguish, and pain.

“yes, she is innocent,” said the eldest brother, and then he related all that had taken

place, and while he spoke, the rose in the air of fragrances from millions of roses 

every piece in the pile had taken root and thrown out branches and appeared a thick

hedge large and high covered with roses while above all bloomed a white and shining

flower that glittered like a star, this flower the king plucked and placed in Eliza’s

bosom when she awoke from her swoon with peace and happiness in her heart

and all the church bells rang of themselves, and the birds came great troops

and a marriage procession returned to the castle such as no King had ever before

seen in Dove.

The End