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The Folktale Project

Jan 29, 2018

Once on a time there lived in a village, a Woodcutter, so poor, so poor, that he had only his hatchet with which to gain bread for his wife and children. With difficulty could he earn six-pence a day, and it needed his wife and himself to rise early and go late to bed, so as to ensure them the coarsest food. Repose they had none.

"What am I to do?" said he, one day, "I am worn out with fatigue, my wife and children have nothing to eat, and I have no longer strength to hold my hatchet, to earn even bitter black bread for my family. Ah! it is very bad luck for the poor, when they are brought into this world."

While he was lamenting in this way, a voice called to him in a compassionate tone: "What are you complaining of?"

"Am I not likely to complain, when I have no food?" said he. "Go home," said the voice, "dig up the earth in the corner of your garden, and you will find under a dead branch, a treasure.

When the wood-cutter heard this, he threw himself on his knees, and cried out: "Master, how do you call yourself? who are you with so kind a heart?"

"My name is Merlin," said the voice."


Host Dan Scholz
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