The Violet Fairy Book - Various - Страница 1 из 354


THE VIOLET FAIRY BOOK
By Various
Edited By Andrew Lang
TO VIOLET MYERS
IS DEDICATED
THE VIOLET FAIRY BOOK
PREFACE
The Editor takes this opportunity to repeat what he has often said
before, that he is not the author of the stories in the Fairy Books;
that he did not invent them 'out of his own head.' He is accustomed to
being asked, by ladies, 'Have you written anything else except the Fairy
Books?' He is then obliged to explain that he has NOT written the Fairy
Books, but, save these, has written almost everything else, except
hymns, sermons, and dramatic works.
The stories in this Violet Fairy Book, as in all the others of the
series, have been translated out of the popular traditional tales in a
number of different languages. These stories are as old as anything
that men have invented. They are narrated by naked savage women to naked
savage children. They have been inherited by our earliest civilised
ancestors, who really believed that beasts and trees and stones can talk
if they choose, and behave kindly or unkindly. The stories are full of
the oldest ideas of ages when science did not exist, and magic took the
place of science. Anybody who has the curiosity to read the 'Legendary
Australian Tales,' which Mrs. Langloh Parker has collected from the lips
of the Australian savages, will find that these tales are closely akin
to our own. Who were the first authors of them nobody knows--probably
the first men and women. Eve may have told these tales to amuse Cain and


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