The Wild Swans (Classic Version)

The Wild Swans

Once upon a time, there was a king who had eleven sons and one daughter named Elisa. After the queen’s death, the king remarried a wicked queen who was a witch. She turned Elisa into a ragged girl and the eleven princes into wild swans.

Elisa was driven out of the palace. After many years, she came across a forest where the eleven swans lived. Upon seeing her brothers, she decided to break the spell.

An old woman in the forest gave her a way to break the spell: she must knit eleven shirts out of nettles, and during these years of knitting, she should neither speak nor laugh. Elisa agreed and began her task in silence.

One day, a king saw Elisa and fell in love with her. He took her to his palace and was set to marry her. But the wicked archbishop convinced the king that Elisa was a witch due to her mysterious behavior. So, she was sentenced to die by fire.

On the day of her execution, the eleven swans appeared, and Elisa threw the shirts over them. They turned back into princes, but the youngest prince had one swan’s wing instead of an arm because Elisa didn’t have time to finish the last sleeve.

The sight of eleven princes testifying for their sister proved her innocence. But Elisa could not speak in her defense because of her vow. Just as she was about to be burned, she finished knitting the last sleeve and threw it over her youngest brother, restoring him wholly.

Finally, she had broken her vow and was free to speak. She defended herself, and the king, realizing his mistake, married her. They lived happily ever after, free from spells and accusations.

The End.