Once upon a time . . . they lived happily ever after . . .    Once upon a time . . . they lived happily ever after . . .

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Grimm's Fairy Tales.

The Shroud

There was once a mother who had a little boy of seven years old, who
was so handsome and lovable that no one could look at him without
liking him, and she herself worshipped him above everything in the
world. Now it so happened that he suddenly became ill, and God took
him to himself, and for this the mother could not be comforted and
wept both day and night. But soon afterwards, when the child had
been buried, it appeared by night in the places where it had sat and
played during its life, and if the mother wept, it wept also, and
when morning came it disappeared. But as the mother would not stop
crying, it came one night, in the little white shroud in which it had
been laid in its coffin, and with its wreath of flowers round its
head, and stood on the bed at her feet, and said, 'Oh, mother, do
stop crying, or I shall never fall asleep in my coffin, for my shroud
will not dry because of all your tears, which fall upon it.' The
mother was afraid when she heard that, and wept no more. The next
night the child came again, and held a little light in its hand, and
said, 'Look, mother, my shroud is nearly dry, and I can rest in my
grave.' Then the mother gave her sorrow into God's keeping, and bore
it quietly and patiently, and the child came no more, but slept in
its little bed beneath the earth.


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