The grandparents send a message to the father who is away but the sorceress intercepts the message and rewrites the message, saying that she has given birth to a monster, half dog, half bear which she conceived in the woods.
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The husband is shocked but replies that they should care for the child until his return. Again the sorceress intercepts the message and substitutes a letter saying that the mother and babe should be cast out. As the new mother wanders in the woods she comes to a well. As she attempts to get water the child falls in. She cries out in distress and an old man tells her to reach in and lift the child out. She says she cannot because she has no hands.
He tells her to try anyway and as she does her arms and hands are restored. Filled with joy she returns to the city where her husband and brother are living. They invite her in, insisting that a beggar woman tells the best stories. The woman says she knows no stories but will tell the truth. She then tells the story of her life. Repeatedly the sorceress tries to interrupt but the brother and then her husband insist that she continue. Her husband asks for further proof, and she shows him his son with the golden arms, etc.
The sorceress is tied to a horse and dragged through the fields until only a braid of hair is left.
Then the new husband and his family return to the grandparents and all live happily and prosper. The new wife dislikes his daughter, beats her, and would destroy her. She sends her to the Baba Yaga, but she goes first to her aunt who advises her to take a ribbon, some oil, some bread, and some ham. Baba puts her to work spinning, planning soon to eat her.
The girl is kind to the maid, giving her a kerchief. She gives ham to the cat and the cat gives her a comb and a towel and tells her to run. The dogs would tear her but she gives them bread and they let her pass. The gate would stop her but she oils its hinges. The birch would lash her eyes but she ties it with a ribbon. But the cat says she has served many years but not been given even a bone, while the girl gave her ham. Baba Yaga starts thrashing the dogs, but he reminds her that she never gave them even a crust.
The gate reminds her that she never even poured water on the hinges let alone oil, and the birch too had never been tended even with a thread, let alone a ribbon. Baba Yaga pursues but the girl puts her ear to the ground and hears her coming. She lays the towel on the ground which turns into a river. Again, as she approaches the girl the girl places the comb in the ground. It turns into a thick forest through which the Baba Yaga cannot pass. When she gets home her father asks where she has been.
The king takes the bird to his castle promising to feed him for three years. He asks to go free but is unable to fly. So the king borrows cattle and feeds the bird a third year. The bird then takes the king on his back and casts him into the sea where the king is wet up to the knees, then into a second sea where he is wet to the waist, and then into a third sea where he is wet to the neck.
Each time he asks the king if he is afraid before being rescued. At last he explains that he did this to let the king know how he felt when the king threatened to shoot him. She too scorns the king and is punished by the eagle. He then takes him to the home of his mother and eldest sister. The king is waylayed on an island and out of curiosity opens the red coffer out of which came cattle of every king, completely filling the island.
Overcome with grief he weeps until a man comes out of the water and says he will help him get the cattle back into the coffer if he gives him that which he does not know is in his house. The king agrees, the cattle are returned to the coffer, and he returns home to discover that his wife has given birth to a son. He opens the coffers: the red one fills his estate with cattle and the green one provides a splendid garden in which to dwell.
Years later he walks by the river and the old man appears and claims his son. They surrender the prince by the seashore. He looks around and enters a thick forest where Baba Yaga lives. She instructs him to go to the seashore where twelve spoonbills will come and turn into lovely maidens and bathe. He should steal the shift of the eldest maiden. He will also meet Eater, Drinker, and Sharp Frost, whom he should take with him. He does as commanded. The lovely maiden pleads to have her shift returned, promising him help when he needs it.
He complies and she returns to spoonbill form and flies away.
The Sea King then invites him to a feast, ordering him to build a great crystal bridge. As the prince weeps at the impossible task Vasilisa the Wise appears at his window and offers to help. She puts him to sleep and builds the bridge. Then the prince is ordered to grow an orchard with songbirds and fruit laden trees overnight. Again he weeps and again Vasilisa puts him to sleep and accomplishes the task. The king then orders him to choose the same girl from a group of identical women three times in succession. Vasilisa the Wise gives him signs to accomplish the task and next day three times he chooses her and marries her.
They then attempt to return home. But the king sends pursuers after them. Vasilisa puts her ear to the earth and hears them coming. She turns her horses into a well, herself into a ladle, and her husband into an old man. The pursuers are tricked and return home to be executed by the Sea King. He sends more pursuers. This time she turns the prince into an old priest and herself into an ancient church.
These messengers return and are likewise put to death. This time the Sea King pursues them himself. Vasilisa turns her horses into a river of mead with banks of pudding. The Sea King eats and drinks until he bursts. So Vasilisa and the prince return to his father and mother. Vasilisa tells him to go first and greet his parents but not to kiss his sister else he forget his wife.
He forgets her command, forgets Vasilisa, and is to be married to a rich queen. Vasilisa bakes a cake for the wedding with a pair of doves and some cheese in it. At the feast the cake is cut and the doves fly out, squabble over the cheese and remind him of his wife.
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The prince remembers Vasilisa, jumps up and takes her by the hand and seats her beside him. Thenceforth, they live together in prosperity and happiness. Vasilisa grows in beauty, the other daughters in ugliness. She feeds her doll choice morsels at night and is consoled by the doll who helps her with her work. The woman repeatedly sends Vasilisa into the woods, hoping the Baba Yaga will devour her, but her doll always leads her home safely.
One autumn the stepmother gives the three maidens work, the oldest making lace, the second knitting stockings, and Vasilisa spinning. One of the sisters snuffs out the candle, and Vasilisa is ordered to go to Baba Yaga to get some light. She goes to her room, feeds her doll whose eyes glow like candles, and then sets out. A horseman in white rides by, then one in red, then one in black and the eyes in the skulls gleam. She invites Vasilisa in and makes her prepare food, clean the hut, wash the linen, and sort grain.
She feeds her doll and it helps her with the work. At dawn the white horseman returns, at sunrise the red one. Baba Yaga arises amazed that the work has all been done. At dusk the black horseman flashes by. Again the work has been accomplished. The witch sets more tasks but the doll helps. Next day she asks Baba Yaga about the three horsemen—the white being bright day, the red the sun, and the black dark night. But she does not ask about the three pairs of hands or things inside the house. Baba Yaga asks how she accomplishes the tasks and Vasilisa tells of the doll from her mother.
Baba Yaga says she wants no blessed ones in her house, gives her a lighted skull for the stepsisters, and Vasilisa set out home. The light of the skull burns the stepmother and her daughters to ashes. To pass the time Vasilisa spins on a loom made with the help of the doll. The old woman takes the linen to the Tsar who is amazed at the gift and orders shirts made of the cloth. None will work with such fine material so Vasilisa is called upon to do the work. She makes a dozen shirts. The Tsar demands to see the needle woman and to reward her with his own hands. He marries her. When her father returns he is overjoyed.
Vasilisa cares for the old woman and carries her doll in her pocket to the end of her life. At the death of their mother Ivan promises to give his sisters in marriage when suitors come. After a storm a falcon comes and asks for Maria. She consents and the bird takes her away. Time passes and after a storm an eagle appears and asks for Olga.
She too consents. Another year passes and after a storm a raven asks for Anna, who agrees. Ivan does not like living alone and seeks his sisters. He meets the beautiful queen Maria Morevna and marries her. The queen is a great warrior. In the closet Ivan finds Koschey the Deathless in chains, asking for water. Books By Ifeanyi C. Oct 31, More Information. Anything else? Provide feedback about this page. Back to top.
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Provide feedback about this page. Back to top. Get to Know Us. Amazon Payment Products. English Choose a language for shopping. Amazon Music Stream millions of songs. Amazon Advertising Find, attract, and engage customers. Amazon Drive Cloud storage from Amazon. Alexa Actionable Analytics for the Web. Sell on Amazon Start a Selling Account. AmazonGlobal Ship Orders Internationally.