Aesop's Fables or Aesopica : a collection of fables by Aesop (620560 BC), a slave and story-teller who lived in Ancient Greece . . .


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Aesop's Fables and Fairy Tales for Kids & Adults

One of the Grimms' Fairy Tales from our vast collection of Fables, Tales and Stories.

Eve's Various Children

When adam and eve were driven out of paradise, they were
compelled to build a house for themselves on barren ground, and
eat their bread in the sweat of their brow. Adam dug up the land,
and eve spun. Every year eve brought a child into the world, but
the children were unlike each other, some pretty, and some ugly.
After a considerable time had gone by, God sent an angel to them,
to announce that he was coming to inspect their household. Eve,
delighted that the lord should be so gracious, cleaned her
house diligently, decked it with flowers, and
strewed rushes on the floor. Then she brought in her children,
but only the beautiful ones. She washed and bathed them, combed
their hair, put clean raiment on them, and cautioned them to
conduct themselves decorously and modestly in the presence of the
Lord. They were to bow down before him civilly, hold out their
hands, and to answer his questions modestly and sensibly. The
ugly children, however, were not to let themselves be seen. One
hid himself beneath the hay, another under the roof, a third
in the straw, the fourth in the stove, the fifth in the cellar,
the sixth under a tub, the seventh beneath the wine-cask, the
eighth under an old fur cloak, the ninth and tenth beneath the
cloth out of which she always made their clothes, and the
eleventh and twelfth under the leather out of which she cut
their shoes. She had scarcely got ready, before there was a
knock at the house-door. Adam looked through a chink, and saw
that it was the Lord. Adam opened the door respectfully,
and the heavenly father entered. There, in a row, stood the
pretty children, and bowed before him, held out their hands,
and knelt down. The Lord, however, began to bless them, laid
his hands on the first, and said, thou shalt be a powerful king,
and to the second, thou a prince, to the third, thou a
count, to the fourth, thou a knight, to the fifth, thou
a nobleman, to the sixth, thou a burgher, to the seventh, thou
a merchant, to the eighth, thou a learned man. He bestowed
upon them also all his richest blessings. When eve saw that
the Lord was so mild and gracious, she thought, I will bring
hither my ill-favored children also, it may be that he will
bestow his blessing on them likewise.
So she ran and brought them out of the hay, the straw, the
stove, and wherever else she had concealed them. Then came the
whole coarse, dirty, scabby, sooty band. The Lord smiled,
looked at them all, and said, I will bless these also. He laid
his hands on the first, and said to him, thou shalt be a peasant,
to the second, thou a fisherman, to the third,
thou a smith, to the fourth, thou a tanner, to the fifth, thou
a weaver, to the sixth, thou a shoemaker, to the seventh, thou
a tailor, to the eighth, thou a potter, to the ninth, thou a
waggoner, to the tenth, thou a sailor, to the eleventh, thou
a messenger, to the twelfth, thou a scullion all the days of
thy life.
When eve had heard all this she said, Lord, how unequally thou
dividest thy gifts. After all they are all of them my children,
whom I have brought into the world, thy favors should be given
to all alike. But God answered, eve, thou dost not understand.
It is right and necessary that the entire world should be
supplied from thy children. If they were all princes and lords,
who would grow corn, thresh it, grind and bake it. Who would
be blacksmiths, weavers, carpenters, masons, laborers, tailors
and seamstresses. Each shall have his own place, so that one
shall support the other, and all shall be fed like the limbs of
one body. Then eve answered, ah, Lord, forgive me, I was too
quick in speaking to thee. Have thy divine will with my children.

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