NCE upon a time there was a man and a wife had too many
children, and they could not get meat for them, so they
took the three youngest and left them in a wood. They
travelled and travelled and could never see a house. It
began to be dark, and they were hungry. At last they saw a
light and made for it; it turned out to be a house. They
knocked at the door, and a woman came to it, who said: "What
do you want?" They said: "Please let us in and give us
something to eat." The woman said: "I can't do that, as my
man is a giant, and he would kill you if he comes home."
They begged hard. "Let us stop for a little while," said
they, "and we will go away before he comes." So she took
them in, and set them down before the fire, and gave them
milk and bread; but just as they had begun to eat, a great
knock came to the door, and a dreadful voice said:
"Fee, fie, fo, fum,
I smell the blood of some earthly one."
"Who have you there, wife?" "Eh," said the wife, "it's three
poor lassies cold and hungry, and they will go away.
won't touch, 'em, man." He said nothing, but ate up a big
supper, and ordered them to stay all night. Now he had three
lassies of his own, and they were to sleep in the same bed
with the three strangers. The youngest of the three strange
lassies was called Molly Whuppie, and she was very clever.
She noticed that before they went to bed the giant put straw
ropes round her neck and her sisters", and round his own
lassies" necks, he put gold chains. So Molly took care and
did not fall asleep, but waited till she was sure everyone
was sleeping sound. Then she slipped out of bed, and took
the straw ropes off her own and her sisters" necks, and took
the gold chains off the giant's lassies. She then put the
straw ropes on the giant's lassies and the gold on herself
and her sisters, and lay down. And in the middle of the
night up rose the giant, armed with a great club, and felt
for the necks with the straw. It was dark. He took his own
lassies out of the bed on to the floor, and battered them
until they were dead, and then lay down again, thinking he
had managed finely. Molly thought it time she and her
sisters were off and away, so she wakened them and told them
to be quiet, and they slipped out of the house. They all got
out safe, and they ran and ran, and never stopped until
morning, when they saw a grand house before them. It turned
out to be a king's house: so Molly went in, and told her
story to the king.
He said: "Well, Molly, you are a clever girl, and you have
managed well; but, if you would manage better, and go back,
and steal the giant's sword that hangs on the back of his
bed, I would give your eldest sister my eldest son to
marry." Molly said she would try. So she went back, and
managed to slip into the giant's house, and crept
 in below the bed. The giant came home, and ate up a great supper, and
went to bed. Molly waited until he was snoring, and she
crept out, and reached over the giant and got down the
sword; but just as she got it out over the bed it gave a
rattle, and up jumped the giant, and Molly ran out at the
door and the sword with her; and she ran, and he ran, till
they came to the "Bridge of one hair;" and she got over, but
he couldn't and he says, "Woe worth ye, Molly Whuppie! never
ye come again." And she says: "Twice yet, carle," quoth she,
"I'll come to Spain." So Molly took the sword to the king,
and her sister was married to his son.
Well, the king he says: "Ye've managed well, Molly; but if
ye would manage better, and steal the purse that lies below
the giant's pillow, I would marry your second sister to my
second son." And Molly said she would try. So she set out
for the giant's house, and slipped in, and hid again below
the bed, and waited till the giant had eaten his supper, and
was snoring sound asleep. She slipped out and slipped her
hand below the pillow, and got out the purse; but just as
she was going out the giant wakened, and ran after her; and
she ran, and he ran, till they came to the "Bridge of one
hair", and she got over, but he couldn't, and he said, "Woe
worth ye, Molly Whuppie! never you come again." "Once yet,
carte," quoth she, "I'll "come to Spain." So Molly took the
purse to the king, and her second sister was married to the
king's second son.
After that the king says to Molly: "Molly, you are a clever
girl, but if you would do better yet, and steal the giant's
ring that he wears on his finger, I will give you my
 youngest son for yourself." Molly said she would try. So
back she goes to the giant's house, and hides herself below
the bed. The giant wasn't long ere he came home, and, after
he had eaten a great big supper, he went to his bed, and
shortly was snoring loud. Molly crept out and reached over
the bed, and got hold of the giant's hand, and she pulled
and she pulled until she got off the ring; but just as she
got it off the giant got up, and gripped her by the hand and
he says: "Now I have caught you, Molly Whuppie, and, if I
done as much ill to you as ye have done to me, what would ye
do to me?"
Molly says: "I would put you into a sack, and I'd put the
cat inside wi' you, and the dog aside you, and a needle and
thread and shears, and I'd hang you up upon the
 wall, and
I'd go to the wood, and choose the thickest stick I could
get, and I would come home, and take you down, and bang you
till you were dead."
"Well, Molly," says the giant, "I'll just do that to you."
So he gets a sack, and puts Molly into it, and the cat and
the dog beside her, and a needle and thread and shears, and
hangs her up upon the wall, and goes to the wood to choose a
Molly she sings out: "Oh, if ye saw what I see."
"Oh," says the giant's wife, "what do you see, Molly?"
But Molly never said a word but, "Oh, if ye saw what I see!"
The giant's wife begged that Molly would take her up into
the sack till she would see what Molly saw. So Molly took
the shears and cut a hole in the sack, and took out the
needle and thread with her, and jumped down and helped the
giant's wife up into the sack, and sewed up the hole.
The giant's wife saw nothing, and began to ask to get down
again; but Molly never minded, but hid herself at the back
of the door. Home came the giant, and a great big tree in
his hand, and he took down the sack, and began to batter it.
His wife cried, "It's me, man;" but the dog barked and the
cat mewed, and he did not know his wife's voice. But Molly
came out from the back of the door, and the giant saw her
and he ran after her; and he ran, and she ran, till they
came to the "Bridge of one hair", and she got over but he
couldn't; and he said,
 "Woe worth you, Mollie Whuppie! never
you come again." "Never more, carle," quoth she, "will I
come again to Spain."
So Molly took the ring to the king, and she was married to
his youngest son, and she never saw the giant again.
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