In a faraway land there lived a king and queen. They had a grand palace and loving objects. But, they had no children. They longed for a baby. After many years, a lovely baby girl was born to them.
The king and queen were overjoyed. They held a grand feast to celebrate the birth of their daughter. All the nobles and great ladies were invited to the feast. They came with many gifts for the newborn child.
The king invited the six good fairies who lived in his kingdom. But he did not invite the evil fairy who also lived in his kingdom. The six fairies came for the feast and each of them gave a special blessing to the little princess.
“She shall be beautiful,” said the first fairy.
“She shall have a kind heart,” the second fairy said.
“She will be wise and clever,” said the third.
Just after the sixth fairy had blessed the princess with her magic gift, there was a flash of lightning. The evil fairy, who had not been invited, stood before the king. “I have a special gift for your daughter, too” she told the king. “When she is fifteen years old, she will prick her finger on a spindle and drop down dead!” Then she disappeared in a cloud of black smoke.
A gasp of horror went through the crowd of nobles and ladies in the hall. The king and queen turned pale with grief.
Just then the second fairy came and touched the baby’s forehead. “All is not lost,” she said. “I cannot undo the curse, but let me at least soften it. The princess will not die, but only sleep for a hundred years. That is the best I can do.”
As soon as the feast was over, the king ordered that all the spinning wheels and spindles in the kingdom were to be burned. He wanted to save his daughter from the curse of the wicked fairy.
Meanwhile the princess grew into a charming and clever girl. All the people in the kingdom loved and adored her for her beauty, wisdom and kindness.
On her fifteenth birthday, the king planned a splendid celebration. While everyone was busy preparing for the feast, the princess wandered about the castle. She saw a staircase winding upward. “Where does this staircase lead to, I wonder?” she said.
She climbed up the staircase till she came to a tiny room. There she saw an old woman spinning. “What is this?” she asked. “This is a spinning wheel,” replied the woman. “I am spinning thread.
“Oh please let me try,” begged the princess, who had never seen a spinning wheel in her life. “Certainly,” said the old woman, smiling wickedly.
The princess sat down to spin. The moment she touched the spindle, she pricked her finger. At once she fell into a deep sleep.
When the king and queen saw their daughter sound asleep, they knew the fairy’s curse had come true. “Do not cry, my queen,” said the king. “Remember, she is not dead, she is only sleeping.”
Then they carried the sleeping princess to her room and laid her tenderly on her bed. The whole kingdom was quiet. Everyone was filled with sorrow.
“When our daughter wakes up after a hundred years, we will all be gone. What will she do then?” said the king. The sixth fairy heard this and felt sorry. She waved her wand. Soon the king and queen and all the people in the castle fell into a deep sleep. The fairy had cast a spell on the whole kingdom.
A dense forest sprang up and covered the castle. As time went by, tales began to be told about the beautiful princess who lay in an enchanted sleep in the castle hidden behind the vines. People called her the Sleeping Beauty. Many brave princes tried to reach the castle to see her, but they could not find a way through the thorny bushes that covered the castle.
A hundred years passed. One day, a young prince was passing the enchanted kingdom. An old man told him about the Sleeping Beauty who lay in the castle. “I must see her for myself,” he said.
As the prince began to cut his way through the vines, he found them parting to make way for him. Soon he reached the castle and saw everyone fast asleep.
The prince reached the Princess’s room and saw her lying asleep on her bed. “She is so beautiful – the Sleeping Beauty,” he whispered, and kissed her. At once the the sleeping beauty awoke. She saw the prince and fell in love with him.
As soon as the princess awoke, the spell was broken. The king and queen rushed to see their daughter. The prince and sleeping beauty-the princess were married. There was a joyous celebration, and they lived happily thereafter.
Other Stories: Rapunzel, Hansel and Gretel, Pinocchio
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