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Nursery Rhymes Online

Fairy Tales

The Brave Tin Soldier

THERE were once five-and-twenty tin soldiers, who were all brothers, for they had been made out of the same old tin spoon. They shouldered arms and looked straight before them, and wore a splendid uniform, red and blue. The first thing in the world they ever heard were the words, “Tin soldiers!” uttered by a […]

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The Red Shoes

There was once a little girl who was very pretty and delicate, but in summer she was forced to run about with bare feet, she was so poor, and in winter wear very large wooden shoes, which made her little insteps quite red, and that looked so dangerous! In the middle of the village lived […]

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The Naughty Boy

Along time ago, there lived an old poet, a thoroughly kind old poet. As he was sitting one evening in his room, a dreadful storm arose without, and the rain streamed down from heaven; but the old poet sat warm and comfortable in his chimney-comer, where the fire blazed and the roasting apple hissed. “Those […]

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The False Collar

There was once a fine gentleman, all of whose moveables were a boot-jack and a hair-comb: but he had the finest false collars in the world; and it is about one of these collars that we are now to hear a story. It was so old, that it began to think of marriage; and it […]

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The Shadow

It is in the hot lands that the sun burns, sure enough! there the people become quite a mahogany brown, ay, and in the hottest lands they are burnt to Negroes. But now it was only to the hot lands that a learned man had come from the cold; there he thought that he could […]

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The Snow Queen

FIRST STORY. Which Treats of a Mirror and of the Splinters Now then, let us begin. When we are at the end of the story, we shall know more than we know now: but to begin. Once upon a time there was a wicked sprite, indeed he was the most mischievous of all sprites. One […]

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The Dream Of Little Tuk

Ah! yes, that was little Tuk: in reality his name was not Tuk, but that was what he called himself before he could speak plain: he meant it for Charles, and it is all well enough if one does but know it. He had now to take care of his little sister Augusta, who was […]

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The Swineherd

There was once a poor Prince, who had a kingdom. His kingdom was very small, but still quite large enough to marry upon; and he wished to marry. It was certainly rather cool of him to say to the Emperor’s daughter, “Will you have me?” But so he did; for his name was renowned far […]

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The Little Mermaid

Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid or `Den lille Havfrue’ (1837) Far out in the ocean the water is as blue as the petals of the loveliest cornflower, and as clear as the purest glass. But it is very deep too. It goes down deeper than any anchor rope will go, and many, many steeples […]

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Ugly Duckling

IT was lovely summer weather in the country, and the golden corn, the green oats, and the haystacks piled up in the meadows looked beautiful. The stork walking about on his long red legs chattered in the Egyptian language, which he had learnt from his mother. The corn-fields and meadows were surrounded by large forests, […]

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Beauty Of Form And Beauty Of Mind

THERE was once a sculptor, named Alfred, who having won the large gold medal and obtained a travelling scholarship, went to Italy, and then came back to his native land. He was young at that time- indeed, he is young still, although he is ten years older than he was then. On his return, he […]

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The Little Match Girl

Most terribly cold it was; it snowed, and was nearly quite dark, and evening– the last evening of the year. In this cold and darkness there went along the street a poor little girl, bareheaded, and with naked feet. When she left home she had slippers on, it is true; but what was the good […]

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The Story Of A Mother

A mother sat there with her little child. She was so downcast, so afraid that it should die! It was so pale, the small eyes had closed themselves, and it drew its breath so softly, now and then, with a deep respiration, as if it sighed; and the mother looked still more sorrowfully on the […]

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The Happy Family

Really, the largest green leaf in this country is a dockleaf; if one holds it before one, it is like a whole apron, and if one holds it over one’s head in rainy weather, it is almost as good as an umbrella, for it is so immensely large. The burdock never grows alone, but where […]

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The Old House

In the street, up there, was an old, a very old house-it was almost three hundred years old, for that might be known by reading the great beam on which the date of the year was carved: together with tulips and hop-binds there were whole verses spelled as in former times, and over every window […]

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The Bell

People said “The Evening Bell is sounding, the sun is setting.” For a strange wondrous tone was heard in the narrow streets of a large town. It was like the sound of a church-bell: but it was only heard for a moment, for the rolling of the carriages and the voices of the multitude made […]

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