THE OLD WITCH
BY THE BROTHERS GRIMM (TRANSLATED)
 THERE was once a little girl who was very willful and who
never obeyed when her elders spoke to her; so how could she
One day she said to her parents: "I have heard so much of
the old witch that I will go and see her. People say she is
a wonderful old woman, and has many marvelous things in her
house, and I am very curious to see them."
But her parents forbade her going, saying: "The witch is a
wicked old woman, who performs many godless deeds; and if
you go near her, you are no longer a child of ours."
The girl, however, would not turn back at her parents'
command, but went to the witch's house. When she arrived
there the old woman asked her:—
"Why are you so pale?"
"Ah," she replied, trembling all over, "I have frightened
myself so with what I have just seen."
"And what did you see?" inquired the old witch.
"I saw a black man on your steps."
"That was a collier," replied she.
"Then I saw a gray man."
 "That was a sportsman," said the old woman.
"After him I saw a blood-red man."
"That was a butcher," replied the old woman.
"But, oh, I was most terrified," continued the girl, "when I
peeped through your window, and saw not you, but a creature
with a fiery head."
"Then you have seen the witch in her proper dress," said the
old woman. "For you I have long waited, and now you shall
give me light."
So saying the witch changed the little girl into a block of
wood, and then threw it on the fire; and when it was fully
alight, she sat down on the hearth and warmed herself,
"How good I feel! The fire has not burned like this for a
Hundreds of additional titles available for
online reading when you join Gateway to the Classics