The World of Fairy Tales. The Ultramarine Book / Мир волшебных сказок. Синяя книга. Книга для чтения на английском языке | Страница 1 | Онлайн-библиотека

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The World of Fairy Tales. The Ultramarine Book / Мир волшебных сказок. Синяя книга. Книга для чтения на английском языке

 Составление и пересказ Марины Гацкевич

© Гацкевич М. А., 2018

© КАРО, 2018

Hans Christian Andersen

The Ugly Duckling

One lovely spring day, a Mother Duck laid on her nest, keeping her eggs warm. She was a little bit bored sitting on her nest all day long. At last one eggshell after another began to crack open. Soon she had eight fluffy little yellow ducklings. All ducks around said how pretty they were! Only one big egg left and she should sit on and wait when it hatched. At last the big egg cracked and the young creature scrambled out. He was a large grey bird! The Ugly Duckling was so different from the others.

The next day was sunny and warm and Mother Duck took her children for a swim on the pond. All the ducklings swam merrily along with her – even the Ugly Duckling. The kind mother noticed how gracefully he swam along. The other ducks on the pond soon started to tease and peck him and even his brothers and sisters tried to chase him away. So the Ugly Duckling kept away from them. When their mother taught them to swim and dive under the water to catch insects, he always lagged behind. He was very unhappy.

When the ducklings could swim well enough, their mother took them to visit the ducks who lived on the other side of the pond. She swam across the water with the nine little ducklings paddling behind her in a long line. As usual the Ugly Duckling was at the very back. When the ducks saw him they started to laugh at him. So the poor creature ran away and hid in some reeds.

Soon it grew dark. The Ugly Duckling wanted his mother but he couldn't understand where to go. Tired, cold and hungry he came to a small hut. Inside was a kind old lady with a cat and a hen. The nice lady was very sorry for a poor creature and let him stay with them.

The cold days came and passed. Soon the sun shone and the birds started to sing. It was spring again!

One day he saw some swans flying in the blue sky They were so beautiful with their great white wings.

The Ugly Duckling felt a little sad because he could never be so beautiful. He looked down into the water and saw a beautiful white swan just like the others. What a miracle! He was no longer a clumsy duckling but a graceful swan.

Hans Christian Andersen


Once upon a time there was a woman whose dearest wish was to have a child of her own. One day she decided to ask an old witch for help.

The witch gave her a magic seed and explained that it would grow into a flower. One day the flower opened and there was a little girl not bigger than her thumb. The happy woman decided to call her Thumbelina.

She was a very happy little girl. All day long she played on her mother's table. At night she slept in a tiny bed. This bed was made from a polished walnut shell but one night a terrible thing happened. An old ugly toad kidnapped her and imprisoned her on a lily pad in the middle of a river. The toad wanted a beautiful wife for her ugly son. A kind fish took pity on Thumbelina and bit through the lily stem. The lily pad floated freely down the stream away from the terrible toad.

Suddenly a big beetle saw the tiny Thumbelina and decided to fly off with her. He was very proud of Thumbelina and decided to show his pretty prize to his friends. They didn't like her and said that she was ugly because she didn't have any feelers. At once the beetle lost interest in her and pushed her away. Thumbelina lived alone in the great wood. She ate berries and drank the dew on the leaves. In winter she was cold, hungry and without shelter.

A kind old mouse found Thumbelina and invited her to stay in her house. She was sure that Thumbelina would be a good wife for her old friend Mr. Mole. One day Thumbelina found a dead swallow in one of the dark passages of the mouse's house. Suddenly she noticed that the swallow was still breathing. She brought some water for the bird and started to look after him.

In spring the swallow recovered and was well enough to fly away.

Time passed and the mouse told Thumbelina that she should marry Mr. Mole. Thumbelina was very sad because she didn't want to spend the rest of her life underground.

The next day the swallow came to say goodbye to Thumbelina.

He was going to fly away for winter. The grateful swallow invited Thumbelina to come to Africa with him. Thumbelina didn't hesitate and happily climbed on his back.

The swallow spread his wings and they lifted high into the sky to begin their journey. They journeyed for several days and nights over beautiful countryside and finally arrived at a land full of tiny people just like Thumbelina.

It wasn't long before a handsome prince met Thumbelina and asked her to marry him.

They all lived happily ever after!

Hans Christian Andersen

The Emperor’s New Clothes

Once upon a time there was an Emperor who was fond of clothes. It was terrible but he was ready to spend all his money on different suits. He didn't care about his friends, his kingdom or his family. He liked clothes so much that he changed them every hour of the day

One day two con men arrived in the capital of his kingdom. They told people that they were weavers and promised to make beautiful clothes. They weren't ordinary dressmakers. They claimed that their clothes were invisible to everyone that was stupid or foolish.

One of the emperor's ministers heard this news and told the Emperor about these marvellous clothes. The Emperor couldn't resist trying on these clothes. He was ready to pay a lot of money to the weavers. The weavers pretended to work on the clothes but their looms had nothing on them.

Some time passed and the minister came to look at these mysterious clothes but he couldn't see them. Of course, it was impossible for him to admit to the Emperor that he could not see anything. Soon the Emperor wanted to see the new clothes for himself. He invited the weavers to bring the new clothes to the palace.

The weavers held the clothes up before him but he couldn't see anything. The Emperor didn't wish to seem stupid in front of his people so he pretended he could see the clothes.

The weavers asked the Emperor if he would like to try the new clothes on.

He didn't have any choice but to put these mysterious clothes on.

His ministers complimented him on how lovely and colourful the clothes looked. They didn't want to admit that they couldn't see anything.

It was time to introduce his new suit to the people of his kingdom.

A great procession went along the streets of the capital to show off his new clothes. The proud Emperor walked at the head of this strange procession feeling very proud of his new clothes.

The crowd started to whisper and laugh but nobody dared to tell the Emperor that he was naked. Suddenly a small innocent boy shouted, «Look, the Emperor is naked!»

The embarrassed Emperor suddenly realised the truth. It was a disaster but he couldn't stop the procession so he walked on through the city completely naked.

Hans Christian Andersen

 The Little Mermaid

Once upon a time lived a Sea King who had four clever and beautiful daughters Mermaids. His wonderful palace was far below the sea. The Mermaids liked to hear tales of the world above, but their wise father always warned them it was a dangerous place.

The youngest Mermaid longed to visit the human world but she should wait for some years. Mermaids could only go up above the sea on their fifteenth birthday

At last her fifteenth birthday came and the lovely Mermaid hurried up above the sea. There was a terrible storm. Suddenly she saw a big ship which began to sink. At the helm of the ship the Mermaid noticed a prince who didn't want to give up and tried to reach the shore. Everything happened very quickly and our brave captain turned in the water going to the bottom. The little Mermaid didn't hesitate and dived deeply to save the handsome prince. Very soon she brought him safely to shore, and swam away before anybody could see her.

Day by day the little Mermaid came to shore and waited for her prince. She fell in love with the prince and couldn't live without him. Of course, she knew that Mermaids couldn't marry humans and it made her very unhappy.

The sad Mermaid decided to visit the Sea Witch and ask a wicked lady to make her human. The ugly Witch was ready to help a nice girl but she had only one condition. She wanted to get the little Mermaid's voice for her work. The Sea Witch warned the little Mermaid that she would never talk again and if the prince married another girl she would become foam on the wave. The nice girl didn't have any choice and agreed at once. After it she drank some magic potion and turned into a human.

Next morning, the prince found a beautiful stranger on the palace steps. The girl wasn't able to say anything but they became great friends. Very soon the little Mermaid found out that the prince loved another princess who lived in a far-away country.

What could the little Mermaid do? She knew that she couldn't return home and missed her family very much.

One day, an invitation arrived from the princess who lived far away. The prince was full of happiness and invited the little Mermaid to go to the distant kingdom with him. He rushed to his wonderful princess and looked forward to seeing his sweetheart. They didn't want to separate for a while and could talk for hours. Very soon the happy couple married.

The little Mermaid knew that all her efforts were in vain. So she walked into the sea and her body turned into foam. The kind prince and his bride spent hours looking for the silent beauty. They missed their good friend who came mysteriously to their lives and just mysteriously disappeared forever.

Hans Christian Andersen

The Emperor’s Nightingale

This news reached the ears of the Emperor himself. He flew in rage and demanded to take this creature to the palace. In a flash his servants rushed to the ancient tree ready to catch and bring the magical bird to the emperor's hall. Very soon a cage with a little grey bird was placed in front of him and the plain creature started to sing.

The song of the nightingale was so sweet that our rough Emperor burst into tears immediately. The birds voice touched everyones heart and the nightingale became a star.

All citizens only talked about the magical bird and he became the main sight of the country.

One day, the Emperor received a big parcel with a mechanical nightingale inside. It sang like a real nightingale and was covered with diamonds, rubies and sapphires. The Emperor decided to compare which of them was better. But the duet sounded quite wrong because the real nightingale sang from natural inspiration and couldn’t match the artificial toy.

The mechanical bird could sing for many hours without becoming bit tired. The silly Emperor chose a toy and ordered to chase the real nightingale away. Every day the Emperor enjoyed listening to wonderful songs. He couldn’t imagine his evening before going to bed without these concerts. One evening listening to his favourite song he suddenly heard some crack and his beloved bird stopped to sing forever.

After this terrible event the Emperor’s life changed completely. He couldn’t sleep and eat, he even fell ill and was going to die. The old Emperor lay pale and cold in his bed. He opened his eyes and saw Death. The frightened Emperor understood that it was his end when he suddenly heard a delightful song.

It was the little nightingale from the park who sat trilling on a branch. The nice creature sang so beautifully that in a flash the Emperor forgot about his death and illness completely. The old man was full of energy. The happy Emperor burst into tears but they were tears of happiness and pleasure.

The grateful Emperor understood his mistake and asked the bird to forgive him. The kind bird only wanted to make people happy singing her songs and the Emperor’s tears of happiness were the main reward.

The clever nightingale promised to visit his friend Emperor and sing to him about good and evil things, about everything what happened in his Empire.

A moment later, the courtiers and servants came to see the Emperor for the last time. You can’t imagine how they were surprised when the Emperor sat up and wished them to have a good day.

Hans Christian Andersen

The Little Lead Soldier

Once upon a time there lived a family, a mother, a father and their two nice children, a son and a daughter. One day, a boy had a birthday and as a present he received twenty-five lead soldiers. They looked like brothers, brave and proud. The lead soldiers had guns and their uniforms were painted red and blue.

The boy lined them on the table. All the soldiers were the same, except for one who had only one leg. There were also many other toys on the table. The most remarkable was a cardboard castle. Through the windows the kids could see the rooms of the castle. The rooms were furnished and looked very pretty. Outside the castle, there were trees which looked like real and a castle moat made from a mirror. Two magnificent swans glided on the castle moat.

The kids could spend hours playing with their toys and even telling magical fairy tales. The girl especially liked a little ballerina who stood by the castle gate. She was made of cardboard, too. The little dancer wore a tutu and a blue scarf. She stretched her arms above her head like a real ballerina on the stage. The maiden held one of her legs so high that the one-legged little lead soldier couldn't see it. He supposed that the girl had only one leg like him. The little lead soldier was sure that the dancer would be a perfect wife for him. Every night, when the house was quiet our little brave soldier dreamed of her.