KING O'TOOLE AND HIS GOOSE
N Ireland there was once a king called King O'Toole,
and he was very fond of hunting.
Up he got every morning at the rising of the sun, and
away he went over the mountains after the deer. As long
as he had his health this kind of life just suited King
O'Toole; but in the course of time he grew old and was
stiff in his limbs, and could go hunting no more. Then
the king was very sad, and at last he got a goose which
he hoped might divert him somewhat.
The goose did its best, and it used to fly about over
the lake near the king's castle and swim in the water
and dive and catch fish. The king liked to watch the
goose, and for a considerable time it entertained him
very well; but at last the goose got stricken in years
like its master, and could not: divert him any longer.
Then King O'Toole felt so downhearted that life seemed
to him scarcely worth living. One morning he was
 the lake lamenting his unhappy fate,
and thinking he might as well drown himself when he met
a young man.
"God save you," said the king.
"God save you kindly, King O'Toole," said the young
man, who was none other that Saint Kavin in disguise.
"I have never seen you before," said the king."Who are
"I'm an honest man," replied Saint Kavin.
"Well, honest man," said the king, "you wear good
clothing and look prosperous and as if you had money
laid by. How do you get your living, may I ask?"
"By making old things as good as new," was Saint
"Is it a tinker you are?" inquired the king.
"No," responded the saint."I'm not a tinker. I've a
better trade than that; and what would you say, King
O'Toole, if I made your old goose young again?"
At the thought of having his old goose young once more
the king's eyes were ready to jump out of his head.
Then he whistled, and the old goose came waddling to
him from behind a clump of bushes near by.
 The minute the saint set eyes on the goose he
took pity on its feebleness and said, "I'll do the job
for you, King O'Toole."
"Bedad!" exclaimed the king, "if you do I'll say you
are the cleverest fellow in siven parishes."
"But you'll have to say more than that," was Saint
Kavin's response."I'm not going to repair your old
goose for nothing, and I want to know how much you're
going to give me."
"I'll give you whatever you ask," said the king."Isn't
"Yes, yes," said Saint Kavin, "that's the way to do
business. Now this is the bargain I'll make
you. King O'Toole—you give me all the ground the
goose goes over in its first flight after I make it
young and strong."
"Done!" said the king.
"Well, then," continued Saint Kavin, "I'll go to work
at once," and he called the old goose to him and took
it up by its two wings."Criss o' my cross on you," said
he and threw the bird up into the air—and how the goose
did fly! It went swift and high and cut as many capers
as a swallow before a shower of rain.
The king stood with his mouth open watching with
delight the bird's every motion, and when it came and
lit at his feet he patted it on the head and said, "My
dear, you are the darling of the world."
But the goose in its flight had covered a great deal of
country. It had been over the castle and all the king's
land for a mile around."And now what have you to say to
me for makin' your goose like that?" asked Saint Kavin.
"I'm very much beholden to you," replied the king.
"And will you give me all the ground the goose flew
over?" Saint Kavin inquired.
"I will," said King O'Toole, "and you'd be welcome to
it even if it took the last acre I had."
 "And you'll keep your word true?" questioned the
"Of course I will," affirmed the king.
"It's well for you. King O'Toole, that you speak as you
do," declared Saint Kavin; "for you did not keep your
promise I 'd never let you goose fly again."
"Waste no more words!" exclaimed King O'Toole, "the
land is yours."
"But I don't want your land," said Saint Kavin.
"I only came here to try you, and you're a very dacint
man. King O'Toole; and now I'll tell you that I'm
disguised, and that is the reason you do not know me."
"Musha! then," said the king, "and who might you be?"
"I'm Saint Kavin," was the reply.
"Oh, queen of heaven!" the king exclaimed, falling on
his knees before the saint, "is it the great Saint
Kavin I 've been discoursing with all this time?"
"It is," said the saint.
"Be jabers! I thought I was only talking to a lump of a
gossoon!" said the king.
"Well, you know the difference now," remarked the good
 And so King O'Toole had his goose made young
again to divert him as long as he lived. But by and by
the king died, and soon afterward the goose got into
trouble with a big eel in the lake. The goose was
fishing and got hold of the eel by mistake, and,
instead of the goose killing the eel, the eel killed
the goose. However, the eel did not eat the goose, for
it did not dare eat what Saint Kavin had laid his
blessed hands on.