Russian fairy tales

Russian fairy tales

The Hut in the Forest

Outside in the forest there was deep snow. The white snow had crusted the branches of the pine trees, and piled itself up them till they bent under its weight. Now and then a snow-laden branch would bend too far, and huge lumps of snow fell crashing to the ground…

Russian fairy tales

The Judgment of Shemyaka

Two brothers once lived upon a little plot of ground—one rich, the other poor. The poor brother went to the rich one to beg of him a horse that he might fetch wood from the forest. His brother gave him the horse; but the poor one begged of him likewise…

Russian fairy tales

The Language of the Birds

Somewhere in a town in holy Russia, there lived a rich merchant with his wife. He had an only son, a dear, bright, and brave boy called Ivan. One lovely day Ivan sat at the dinner table with his parents. Near the window in the same room hung a cage,…

Russian fairy tales

The Little Daughter of the Snow

There were once an old man, as old as I am, perhaps, and an old woman, his wife, and they lived together in a hut, in a village on the edge of the forest. There were many people in the village; quite a town it was—eight huts at least, thirty…

Andrew Lang’s Fairy BooksRussian fairy tales

The Lute Player

Once upon a time there was a king and queen who lived happily and comfortably together. They were very fond of each other and had nothing to worry them, but at last the king grew restless. He longed to go out into the world, to try his strength in battle…

Russian fairy tales

The Mild Man and his Cantankerous Wife

There lived once upon a time, in great poverty, a countryman and his wife: he was mild as a calf, and she as cunning as a serpent. She abused and drubbed her husband for every trifle. One day she begged some corn of a neighbour to make a loaf of…

Andrew Lang’s Fairy BooksRussian fairy tales

The Norka

Once upon a time there lived a King and Queen. They had three sons, two of them with their wits about them, but the third a simpleton. Now the King had a deer park in which were quantities of wild animals of different kinds. Into that park there used to…

Russian fairy tales

The Seven Brothers Simeon

There were once upon a time two old serfs, who lived together for many years without children; and in their old age they prayed for a child to keep them from want when they were no longer able to labour. After seven years the good woman gave birth to seven…

Russian fairy tales

The Tsarevna Frog

In an old, old Russian tsarstvo, I do not know when, there lived a sovereign prince with the princess his wife. They had three sons, all of them young, and such brave fellows that no pen could describe them. The youngest had the name of Ivan Tsarevitch. One day their…

Russian fairy tales

Who Lived in the Skull?

Once upon a time a horse’s skull lay on the open plain. It had been picked clean by the ants, and shone white in the sunlight. Little Burrowing Mouse came along, twirling his whiskers and looking at the world. He saw the white skull, and thought it was as good…

Russian fairy tales

Woe Bogotir

In a small village—do not ask me where; in Russia, anyway—there lived two brothers; one of them was rich, the other poor. The rich brother had good luck in everything he undertook, was always successful, and had profit out of every venture. The poor brother, in spite of all his…

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