Story in 12 pictures
by Heinz Mellmann
Tale by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, after the translation of Lucy Crane
There was once a rich man whose wife lay sick and when she felt her end drawing near she called to her only daughter to come near her bed and said, »Dear child, be pious and good and God will always take care of you, and I will look down upon you from heaven and will be with you.« And then she closed her eyes and expired. The maiden went every day to her mother's grave and wept, and was always pious and good. When the winter came the snow covered the grave with a white covering, and when the sun came in the early spring and melted it away the man took to himself another wife.
The new wife brought two daughters home with her, and they were beautiful and fair in appearance, but at heart were black and ugly. And then began very evil times for the poor stepdaughter. »Is the stupid creature to sit in the same room with us?« said they; »those who eat food must earn it. Out with the kitchen-wench!« They took away her pretty dresses, and put on her an old grey bed gown and gave her wooden shoes to wear. »Just look now at the proud princess, how she is decked out!« cried they laughing, and then they sent her into the kitchen. There she was obliged to do heavy work from morning to night; get up early in the morning, draw water, make the fires, cook, and wash. Besides that, the sisters did their utmost to torment her, mocking her, and strewing peas and lentils among the ashes and setting her to pick them up. In the evenings, when she was quite tired out with her hard day's work, she had no bed to lie on, but was obliged to rest on the hearth among the cinders. And as she always looked dusty and dirty, they named her Cinderella.
It happened one day that the father went to the fair and he asked his two stepdaughters what he should bring back for them. »Fine clothes!« said one. »Pearls and jewels!« said the other. »But what will you have, Cinderella?« said he. »The first twig, father, that strikes against your hat on the way home; that is what I should like you to bring me.«