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By Itellyouastory

The wife of  a rich man  fell sick; and  when she felt  that her enddrew nigh, she called her only daughter to her bed-side, and said,«Always be a good girl, and  I will look  down from  heaven and watchover you.»  Soon afterwards she shut her eyes and died,  and was buriedin the garden;  and the little girl went every day to her grave andwept, and was always  good and kind to all about her. And the snow felland spread a beautiful  white covering over the grave; but by the timethe spring came, and the sun  had melted it away again, her father  hadmarried another wife. This new  wife had two daughters of her  own, thatshe brought  home with her; they  were fair in face but foul at heart,and  it was now a sorry time for the  poor little girl. «What does  thegood-for-nothing want  in the parlour?»  said they; «they  who wouldeat bread  should  first earn  it; away  with  the kitchen-maid!» Thenthey took away her  fine clothes, and gave her an  old gray frock to puton, and laughed at her, and turned her into the kitchen.

There she was forced to  do hard work; to  rise early before daylight,to bring the water, to make the fire, to cook and to wash. Besides that,the sisters plagued her  in all  sorts of  ways, and  laughed at  her.In  the evening when she was tired, she had no bed to lie down on, butwas made to lie by the hearth among the ashes; and as this, of course,made her always dusty and dirty, they called her Ashputtel.


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