JACK AND THE BEAN STALK.
1. In the time of King Alfred there lived a
poor widow, with an only son, close to a wood,
there not being any other house within a great
distance. Her son was called Jack, and was
a very lazy fellow, so that his mother had
hard work to keep him and herself, and being
very ailing she was obliged to sell nearly all
her goods excepting her cow, so she said to
Jack, "You have brought me to poverty, so
that I must sell my cow."
2. Jack now for the first time felt that he
had been a bad son, so he said to his mother,
"Let me sell the cow, and I will be for the
future good." So Jack started with the cow,
and it so happened that Jack met a butcher
going to market, who asked him if he would
sell the cow, at the same time showing Jack
some beautiful beans of all colours, so the
sight quite struck him. The artful butcher
soon saw that, so he said, "I will give you all
these beans for your cow;" so Jack thought
it was a great offer, and at once sold the cow.
3. Jack now hastened home to his mother
with the beans in high glee, and his mother
was very vexed, and said he had ruined them,
and for the first time lost her temper, and
threw the beans out the window, and they both
went supperless to bed.
4. When Jack awoke in the morning he
was astonished to see in the garden something
growing so high that he could not see the top
of it, and calling his mother to see what Jack
now found out to be the beans grown up in
the night so like a ladder that Jack said to
his mother, "I will climb up and see what is
at the top;" and after a very long journey
he arrived on a great plain so hungry and
tired that he thought he should be starved to
5. But soon a fairy appeared, and walking
up to Jack told him not to be frightened, that
she knew his father, who was a good and kind
man, who unfortunately made the acquaintance
of a giant, who told your father that he had
lost all his riches through misfortune, and
your father let him come and live with them.
The giant one morning while the good man
was poking the fire, struck him on the head
and killed him, and taking possession of his
castle and riches, turned you and your
mother out, who went to live a long way off,
being afraid the giant would kill you both."
The fairy now pointed out the road to the
castle, and left Jack.
6. Jack now started on his journey, and
soon arrived at the castle, and knocked at the
door quite bold. The door was opened
by the giant's wife, who told Jack she
could not let him in, if she did her husband
would kill and eat him; but Jack pleaded so
hard that she gave him some supper and hid
him in the copper.
7. The Giant soon returned, and had his
supper, and then called his wife to bring him
his hen, a beautiful creature, which the giant
told to lay, and she immediately laid a golden
egg as often as the giant told her. The giant
soon fell asleep, and Jack now came from his
hiding, seized the hen, and ran to the bean
stalk, and quickly got home.
8. Jack then showed his mother the hen,
and told it to lay, and showed the eggs to his
mother, who was very pleased with her son
Jack, for they soon got very rich, the hen
always laying eggs when told to.
9. Jack some time after thought he would
still revenge his father's death, so he returned
to the castle so disguised that the giant's wife
did not know him, so Jack managed to be hid
again. The giant soon retuned, as usual,
to his supper, and afterwards calling for his
bags of gold, went asleep counting it. Jack
now made off with as much gold as he could
carry, and got home soon to his mother.
10. Jack again thought he would still be
revenged upon the giant, and again arrived at
the castle, but found it very difficult to per-
suade the giant's wife to let him in, and at
last she consented, and again hid him in the
copper. When the giant returned, he said,
"Wife, I smell fresh meat," and searched the
room. Jack was almost frightened to death,
and was wishing himself safe at home, but
fortunately the giant was very tired, and soon
ended the search, and after supper he called
his wife to bring him his harp, which played
some beautiful tunes without being touched.
11. The giant soon went to sleep, so Jack
got quickly out of his hiding place, and
seizing the harp, Jack was making off with it,
but it being enchanted, cried out, "Master,
master," which soon awoke the giant, and he
tried to overtake Jack.
12. Jack soon arrived at the bottom of the
bean stalk, and calling for his chopper he
cut the stalk, so that the giant fell down
and was killed. Afterwards Jack and his
mother removed to a very fine house, and
lived very comfortably for a long time.