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LUCKY PEER_安徒生童话全集



 

IN the most fashionable street in the city stood a fineold house; the wall around it had bits of glass worked intoit, so that when the sun or the moon shone it looked as if itwere covered with diamonds.That was a sign of wealth, and there was great wealth inside. It was said that the mer-chant was a man rich enough to put two barrels of gold intohis best parlor and could even put a barrel of gold pieces,as a savings bank against the future, outside the door of theroom where his little son was born.

When the baby arrived in the rich house, there was great joy from the cellar up to the garret;and up there, there was still greater joy an hour or two later. The ware-houseman and his wife lived in the garret, and there, too,at the same time, a little son arrived,given by our Lord,brought by the stork, and exhibited by the mother.And there, too, was a barrel outside the door,quite accidental-ly; but it was not a barrel of gold—it was a barrel of sweepings.

The rich merchant was a very kind,fine man.His wife, delicate and always dressed in clothes of high quali-ty,was pious and, besides,was kind and good to the poor.Everybody rejoiced with these two people on now having a little son who would grow up and be rich and hap-py, like his father. When the little boy was baptized he was called Felix, which in Latin means"lucky," and thishe was, and his parents were even more so.

The warehouseman, a fellow who was really good to the core, and his wife, an honest and industrious woman,were well liked by all who knew them. How lucky they were to have their little boy; he was called Peer.

The boy on the first floor and the boy in the garret each received the same amount of kisses from his parentsand just as much sunshine from our Lord; but still theywere placed a little differently—one downstairs, and oneup.Peer sat the highest,way up in the garret, and he had his own mother for a nurse;little Felix had a strangerfor his nurse, but she was good and honest—that was written in her service book. The rich child had a prettybaby carriage, which was pushed about by his elegantly dressed nurse; the child from the garret was carried in thearms of his own nither,both when she was in her Sunday clothes and when she had her everyday things on, and hewas just as happy.

Both children soon began to observe things; they were growing, and both could show with their hands how tall they were, and say single words in their mother tongue.They were equally handsome, petted,and equallyfond of sweets. As they grew up, they both got an equalamount of pleasure out of the merchant's horses and car-riages.Felix was allowed to sit by the coachman, alongwith his nurse, and look at the horses; he would fancyhimself driving.Peer was allowed to sit at the garret win-dow and look down into the yard when the master and mistress went out to drive;and when they had left, hewould place two chairs,one in front of the other, up there in the room, and so he would drive himself; he wasthe real coachman—that was a little more than fancying himself to be the coachman.

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