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Herr Korbes

There once lived a Cock and a Hen, who agreed to set out on their travels together. The Cock therefore bought a smart carriage, which had four red wheels, and to which he harnessed four little Mice; and then the Hen got inside along with him, and they set off together. They had not gone far, when they met a Cat, who asked them where they were going. The Cock answered, "To Herr Korbes." "Will you take me with you?" said the Cat. "Oh yes, willingly; but get up behind, for you might fall out in front, and take care that you do not dirty my red wheels," replied the Cock; and then he cried, "Now turn away, little Wheels, and hurry on, little Mice, or we shall be too late to find Herr Korbes at home."

On the road there afterwards came a Grindstone, a Pin, an Egg, a Duck, and, last of all, a Needle, and everyone mounted into the carriage and went on with it. When they arrived at the house, Herr Korbes was not at home, so the Mice drew the carriage into the barn, the cock and Hen flew onto a perch, the Cat seated herself on the hearth, the Duck perched on a waterbutt, the Egg wrapped itself up in the towel, the Pin hid itself in the cushion of a chair, the Needle jumped on to the bed and buried itself in the pillow, and the Grindstone placed itself just over the door.

Soon afterwards, Herr Korbes returned, and going to the hearth poked the fire; then the Cat threw the ashes in his face. He ran into the kitchen to wash himself, and the Duck spurted the water into his eyes; so he took up the towel to wipe them, and the Egg broke and ran about over his chin. All these mishaps made him feel tired, and he dropped into a chair to rest himself; but the Pin was there before him, and made him jump up in a rage and throw himself on the bed; where the Needle in the pillow pricked him so that he shouted with pain, and ran in a terrible wrath out of the room. Just as he got to the door the Stone fell down on his head, and knocked him down on the spot.

So we conclude that this Herr Korbes must have been a very bad man.


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