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Little Red Riding Hood

A woman gave her daughter a freshly baked loaf of bread and some milk, and told her to take them to her grandmother. The little girl set set off, but at the crossroads she met the werewolf, who asked her where she was going.

"I am taking a hot loaf and a bottle of milk to my grandmother."
"What road are you taking," asked the werewolf, "the Needles Road or the Pins Road?"
"The Needles Road," said the little girl.
"Well, I shall take the Pins Road."

While the little girl enjoyed herself picking up needles, the werewolf reached her grandmother's house. He killed her, and put some of her flesh in the pantry and a bottle of her blood on the shelf.

The little girl reached the house and knocked. The werewolf told her to push the door, which was only held shut with a wet straw.

"Hello, Grandmother;I'm bringing you a hot loaf and a bottle of milk."
"Put them in the pantry. You eat the meat that's there and drink a bottle of wine that is on the shelf."

While she ate, a little cat said:"A slut is she who eats the flesh and drinks the blood of her grandmother!"

Story continued below


"Undress, my child," said the werewolf, "and come and sleep beside me."
"Where should I put my apron?"
"Throw it in the fire, my child;you don't need it anymore."

And as the little girl took of each article of clothing, the bodice, the dress, the skirt, and the hose, she asked where she should put them, and the werewolf gave her the same answer:"Throw it in the fire, my child;you will need it no more."

"Oh, Grandmother, how hairy you are!"
"It's to keep me warmer, my child."
"Oh, Grandmother, those long nails you have!"
"It's to scratch me better, my child."
"Oh, grandmother, those big shoulders that you have!"
"All the better to carry kindling from the woods, my child."
"Oh, Grandmother, those big ears that you have!"
'All the better to hear you with, my child."
"Oh, Grandmother, what a big mouth you have!"
"All the better to eat you with, my child!"
"Oh, Grandmother, I need to go outside and relieve myself."
"Do it in bed, my child."
"No, Grandmother, I want to go outside."
"All right, but don't stay to long."

The werewolf tied a woolen thread to her foot and let her go out. When the little girl was outside she tied the end of the string to a plum tree in the yard. The werewolf became impatient and called out:

"Are you making cables?"

When no answer came, he jumped out of the bed and saw that the little girl had escaped. He chased after her, but she got back safely inside her house just as he arrived.

Told by Louis and Francois Briffault, at Montigny-aux-Amognes, Nièvre, about 1885. Published by A. Millien, Mèlusine 3 (1886-7), 428-9