|A Child's Book of Stories|
|by Penrhyn W. Coussens|
|A choice collection of favorite fairy tales, to delight children of all ages. The 86 stories selected for this collection include folk tales from England, Norway, and India, as well as the best fairy tales from Grimm, Andersen, and Perrault. The volume also contains a handful of fables from Aesop and several tales from the Arabian Nights. Ages 5-9 |
RED RIDING HOOD
HERE was once a sweet little maiden, who was loved by all
who knew her; but she was especially dear to her
Grandmother, who did not know how to make enough of the
child. Once she gave her a little red velvet cloak.
It was so becoming, and she liked it so much, that she
would never wear anything else; and so she got the name
of Red Riding Hood.
One day her Mother said to her: "Come here, Red Riding
Hood, take this cake and bottle of wine to Grandmother;
she is weak and ill, and it will do her good. Go
quickly, before it gets hot, and don't loiter by the
way, or run, or you will fall down and break the
bottle, and there will be no wine for Grandmother.
When you get there, don't forget to say 'Good-morning'
prettily, without staring about you."
"I will do just as you tell me," Red Riding Hood
promised her Mother.
Her Grandmother lived away in the woods a good
half-hour from the village. When she got to the wood,
she met a Wolf; but Red Riding Hood did not know what a
wicked animal he was, so she was not a bit afraid of
"Good-morning, Red Riding Hood," he said.
"Good-morning, Wolf," she answered.
"Whither away so early, Red Riding Hood?"
"What have you got in your basket?"
 "Cake and wine; we baked yesterday, so I'm taking a
cake to Grannie; she wants something to make her well."
"Where does your Grandmother live, Red Riding Hood?"
"A good quarter of an hour further into the wood. Her
house stands under three big oak trees, near a hedge of
nut trees which you must know," said Red Riding Hood.
The Wolf thought: "This tender little creature will be
a plump morsel; she will be nicer than the old woman. I
must be cunning, and snap them both up."
He walked along with Red Riding Hood for a while, then
he said: "Look at the pretty flowers, Red Riding Hood.
Why don't you look about you? I don't believe you even
hear the birds sing. You are just as solemn as if you
were going to school: everything else is so gay out
here in the woods."
Red Riding Hood raised her eyes, and when she saw the
sunlight dancing through the trees, and all the bright
flowers, she thought: "I'm sure Grannie would be
pleased if I took her a bunch of fresh flowers. It is
still quite early. I shall have plenty of time to pick
So she left the path, and wandered off among the trees
to pick the flowers. Each time she picked one, she
always saw another prettier one further on. So she
went deeper and deeper into the forest.
In the meantime the Wolfe went straight off to the
Grandmother's cottage, and knocked at the door.
"Who is there?"
"Red Riding Hood, bringing you a cake and some wine.
Open the door!"
"Press the latch!" cried the old woman. "I am too weak
to get up."
The Wolfe pressed the latch, and the door sprang open.
He went straight in and up to the bed without saying a
 ate up the poor old woman. Then he put on her
nightdress and nightcap, got into bed and drew the
Red Riding Hood ran about picking flowers till she
could carry no more, and then she remembered her
Grandmother again. She was astonished when she got to
the house to find the door open, and when she entered
the room everything seemed so strange.
She felt quite frightened, but she did not know why.
"Generally I like coming to see Grandmother so much,"
she thought. She cried: "Good-morning, Grandmother,"
but she received no answer.
Then she went up to the bed and drew the curtain back.
There lay her Grandmother but she had drawn her cap
down over her face, and she looked very odd.
"Oh, Grandmother, what big ears you have got," she
"The better to hear with, my dear."
"Grandmother, what big eyes you have got."
"The better to see with, my dear."
"What big hands you have got, Grandmother."
"The better to catch hold of you with, my dear."
"But Grandmother, what big teeth you have got."
"The better to eat you with, my dear."
Hardly had the Wolfe said this, than he made a spring
out of bed, and devoured poor little Red Riding Hood.
When the Wolf had satisfied himself, he went back to
bed and he was soon snoring loudly.
A Huntsman went past the house, and thought, "How
loudly the old lady is snoring; I must see if there is
anything the matter with her."
So he went into the house, and up to the bed, where he
found the Wolf fast asleep. "Do I find you here, you
old sinner?" he said. "Long enough have I sought you."
He raised his gun to shoot, when it just occurred to
 that perhaps the Wolf had eaten up the old lady, and
that she might still be saved. So he took a knife and
began cutting open the sleeping wolf. At the first cut
he saw the little red cloak, and after a few more
slashes, the little girl sprang out, and cried: "Oh,
how frightened I was, it was so dark inside the Wolf!"
Next the old Grandmother came out, alive, but hardly
able to breathe.
Red Riding Hood brought some big stones with which they
filled the Wolf, so that when he woke and tried to
spring away, they dragged him back, and he fell down
They were all quite happy now. The Huntsman skinned
the Wolf, and took the skin home. The Grandmother ate
the cake and drank the wine which Red Riding Hood had
brought, and she soon felt quite strong. Red Riding
Hood thought: "I will never again wander off into the
forest as long as I live, if my Mother forbids it."
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