The Girl without Hands
Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm
A miller1 fell slowly but surely into poverty， until finally he had nothing more than his mill and a large apple tree which stood behind it. One day he had gone into the forest to gather wood， where he was approached by an old man， whom he had never seen before， and who said， "Why do you torment2 yourself with chopping wood? I will make you rich if you will promise me that which is standing3 behind your mill."
"What can that be but my apple tree?" thought the miller， said yes， and signed it over to the strange man.
The latter， however， laughed mockingly and said， " in three years and get what belongs to me，" then went away.
When he arrived home， his wife came up to him and said， "Miller， tell me，? All at once all the chests and boxes are full， and no one brought it here， and I don't know where it came from."
He answered， " from an strange man whom I met in the woods and who promised me great treasures if I would but sign over to him that which stands behind the mill. We can give up the large apple tree for all this."
"Oh，!" said the woman， terrified. "That was the devil. He didn't mean the apple tree， but our daughter， then standing behind the mill sweeping4 the yard."
The miller's daughter was a beautiful and 5 girl， and she lived the three years worshipping God and without sin. When the time was up and the day came when the evil one was to get her， she washed herself clean and drew a circle around herself with chalk. The devil appeared very early in the morning， but he could not approach her.
He spoke6 angrily to the miller， "Keep water away from her， so she cannot wash herself any more. Otherwise I have no power over her."
The miller was frightened and did what he was told. The next morning the devil returned， but she had wept into her hands， and they were entirely7 clean.
he still could not approach her， and he spoke angrily to the miller， "Chop off her hands. Otherwise I cannot get to her."
The miller was horrified8 and answered， "How could I chop off my own child's hands!"
Then the evil one threatened him， saying， "If you do not do it， then you will be mine， and I will take you yourself."
This frightened the father， and he promised to obey him. Then he went to the girl and said， "My child， if I do not chop off both of your hands， then the devil will take me away， and in my fear I have promised him to do this. Help me in my need， me of the evil that I am going to do to you."
She answered， "Dear father， do with me what you will. I am your child，" and with that she stretched forth9 both hands and let her father chop them off.
The devil came a third time， but she had wept so long and so much onto the stumps10， that they were entirely clean. Then he had to give up， for he had lost all claim to her.
The miller spoke to her， "I have gained great wealth through you. I shall take care of you in splendor11 as long as you live."
But she answered， "I cannot remain here. I will go away. joyful13 news to the king.
Now on the way the messenger stopped at a brook14 to rest. Tired from his long journey， he fell asleep. Then the devil came to him. He still wanted to harm the queen， and he took the letter， putting in its place one that stated that the queen had brought a changeling into the world. When the king read this letter he was frightened and saddened， but nevertheless he wrote an answer that they should take good care of the queen until his return. The messenger returned with this letter， but he rested at the same place， and again fell asleep. The devil came again and placed a different letter in his bag. This letter said that they should kill the queen with her child.
The old mother was terribly frightened when she received this letter. She could not believe it， and wrote to the king again， but she got back the same answer， each time the devil substituted a false letter. And the last letter even stated that they should keep the queen's tongue and eyes as proof.
The old mother lamented