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THE BLACK SNAKE AND THE GOLDEN CHAIN

APAIR of Crows had built their nest in the branches of a certain hollow tree. In the hollow lived a big black Snake, which had often climbed up the tree to the nest and eaten the baby Crows. One day, when there was a new nest full of little Crows, the mother bird said to her mate:

“Husband, we ought to have left this tree; we shall never raise any little ones so long as the black Snake lives here!”

“My dear,” replied the father Crow, “you need not be afraid, I have put up with that wicked black Snake until I am tired. Now I am going to put an end to him.”

“But how can put put an end to a big black Snake like that?” asked the mother bird.

“My dear,” replied her mate, “have no fear, but help me with the plan that I have made. The King’s son comes here every day to bathe in the stream. When he takes off his gold anklet and lays it on the stone, you must fly down, take it in your beak, and drop it into the hollow of the tree.”

Shortly afterward the King’s son came, as usual, to bathe. After he had taken off his clothes and ornaments, the Hen-Crow flew down, as her mate had told her, seized the anklet in her beak, and dropped it into the hollow of the tree. Presently, when the King’s son came out of the water, he missed his golden anklet, and his servants began hunting for it everywhere. When they searched in the hollow of the tree they found not only the golden anklet, but also the big black Snake, which they immediately killed.

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