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The Seven Ravens

There was once a man who had seven sons, and still he had no daughter, but much he desired one. At length his wife again gave him confidence of a child, and when it came into the world it was a girl. The other six went with him, and as each of them wanted to be first to fill it, the jug fell into the well. There they stood and did not know what to do, and not one of them dared to go home. As they still didn't return, the father grew impatient, and said, they have certainly forgotten it while playing a game, the wicked boys. He became afraid that the woman would need to die without being baptized, and in his rage cried, I want the boys were all turned into ravens. Hardly was the word spoken before he heard a whirring of wings over his head, looked up and watched seven coal-black ravens flying off.
The Seven Ravens
The parents could not withdraw the curse, and however sad they were at the loss of the seven sons, they still to some extent linking themselves with their beloved little daughter, who soon grew strong and every day became more delightful. For years she did not know that she had had brothers, because of her parents had been careful not to mention them before her, but one day she accidentally heard some folks saying of herself, that the woman was certainly beautiful, but that in reality she had been to blame for the misfortune which had befallen her seven brothers. Subsequently she was much troubled, and went into her father and mother and asked if it was true that she had had brothers, and what had become of them. The parents now dared keep the secret no more, but said that what had befallen her brothers had been that the will of heaven, and that her birth had just been the innocent cause. Nevertheless, the maiden took it to heart every day, and believed she must rescue her brothers. She had no peace or rest until she put out secretly, and went forth into the wide world to look for her brothers and set them loose, let it cost what it would. She took nothing with her but a little ring belonging to her parents as a keepsake, a loaf of bread against hunger, a small pitcher of water against appetite, and a bit of chair as a provision against weariness.

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And now she moved always onwards, far, far into the very end of the world. Then she reached the sunlight, but it was too hot and terrible, and devoured little children. Hastily she hurried away, and hurried to the moon, but it was far too cold, and also malicious and dreadful, and if it saw that the child, it said, I smell, I smell the flesh of men. At that she ran swiftly off, and came into the stars, that have been kind and good to her, and every one of them sat on its own particular small seat. However, the morning star arose, and gave her the drumstick of a chicken, and said, if you've not that drumstick you can't open the glass mountain, and in the glass mountain are the brothers.

The maiden took the drumstick, wrapped it carefully in a cloth, and went onwards again until she reached the glass mountain. The door was shut, and she thought she would take out the drumstick. However, when she undid the fabric, it was vacant, and she'd lost the good celebrity's present. What was she now to perform. The good sister took a knife, cut off one of her small fingers, put it in the doorway, and succeeded in opening it. When she had gone inside, a little dwarf came to meet her, '' he stated, my child, what are you looking for. I am searching for my brothers, the seven ravens, she replied. The dwarf said, the lord ravens aren't in your home, but if you will wait here until they come, measure in. Thereupon the little stunt transported the ravens' dinner in, on seven little plates, also in seven little glasses, and also the little sister ate a morsel from each plate, and out of each little glass she took a sip, however in the past little glass she dropped the ring that she had brought away with her.

Suddenly she heard a whirring of wings and a racing through the atmosphere, and then the little dwarf said, today the lord ravens are flying home. Then they arrived and desired to eat and drink, and looked for their little plates and glasses. Then said one after another, who has eaten something in my own plate. Who's drunk out of my little glass. It was a human mouth. And when the seventh came to the bottom of the glass, then the ring wrapped against his mouth. Then he looked at it, and noticed that it was a ring belonging to his father and mother, and said, God grant that our sister may be here, and then we shall be free. When the maiden, who had been standing behind the door watching, found that desire, she came forth, and on this all the ravens were restored to their human form again. 


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