Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs     /p1

Once upon a time there was a queen who had a magic mirror. The mirror could talk and it always told the truth. A little princess called Snow White also lived in the Palace. Each day she grew taller and more beautiful. One day the queen said to her mirror, "Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who is the fairest of us all?" "Be content, oh queen, you are beautiful. But Snow White is a thousand times fairer than you!" the mirror answered.

The queen was shocked and angry. She did not think anyone could be fairer than she. The queen quickly called for her hunter. "Take Snow White into the forest and kill her!" she ordered.

The hunter was afraid of the angry queen. He thought he had to obey her, so he took Snow White into the forest. When the little princess knew what the hunter had been ordered to do, she began to cry.

"Oh, dear hunter," she begged, "please let me live! I'll go far away and never return home." The hunter was sorry and felt pity for the beautiful little girl. He decided to let her go. Snow White thanked him and ran into the cool dark forest as fast as she could go. Poor Snow White!

She went on and on into the thick tangle of trees and brush. She was so tired and frightened that she started to cry again. Then suddenly she saw a strange little house among the trees.

She walked up to the cottage. She knocked, but nobody answered, so she opened the door and went inside. She saw a pretty room with a long table. On it were seven small bowls of porridge. Snow White was very hungry, so she ate a little from each bowl. She went into another room and saw seven little beds. She was so tired; she climbed into one and was soon sound asleep. The funny little house belonged to seven dwarfs. When it was dark they came home.

"Who ate my porridge?" said one. "Who used my spoon?" asked another. "Who has been here?" grumbled a third. The seven dwarfs looked into the bedroom and saw Snow White still sound asleep. "What a pretty little girl," one whispered. "She looks like a princess," said another. And even though they whispered, Snow White woke up. They looked friendly, so she told them everything. The seven dwarfs were sorry for Snow White and wanted to help her.

"If you'll cook and keep house for us, you may live here," they told her. So Snow White made her home with the seven dwarfs and was very happy.