The Donkey's Skin

There was once a rich and powerful king who, though old and ugly, took it into his head to marry a young beautiful girl at the court. The girl did want to marry the king and asked stepmother for help to escape this marriage.
“You can never say no to the king,” said the woman, ”but you can lay down absurd conditions. Ask him for the skin of his donkey.”
Now this donkey was a magic donkey, on which all the king's power depended, so the two of them never dreamed for one moment that he would make such a sacrifice. But the king at once sent the girl what she had asked for.
The young girl decided to run away. put on the donkey skin, so shewould not be recognised, and fled to nearby country. To earn herself a living there, she took the job of a serving girl in an inn: and indeed she was good at everything she did, especially baking cakes. She never took off her disguise and, though it made her look horrible, the donkey kept her safe. Only occasionally when she was alone in her room, did she wash and comb her hair and put on the fine dress she had brought with her.
One day, the son of the king of that land happened to come to the inn. Looking around the place, he found a locked door. Out of curiosity he peeped through the keyhole, and sawsuch a beautiful young girl that he fell In love at first sight. When he asked who stayed in that room, he was toldthat It was only an ugly serving girl.
When Donkey Skin was shown to him, he was forced to admit that it was not the girl he had seen through the keyhole. The prince grew lovesick and lost his appetite. As he grew weaker, the court doctor decided that he could only be tempted to eat again. by a piece from one of Donkey Skin's delicious cakes. So she was com­manded to bake a cake, but when the prince took his first bite he found in it a ring, which had slipped from Donkey Skin's finger.
The prince remembered having seen the ring through the keyhole on the beautiful young girl's finger. He vowed he would marry only the girl on whose finger the ring fitted perfectly. To make him happy, the king and the queen agreed to this, especially since a finger small enough to fit that ring must surely belong to a grand lady.
The search began at once, and In the end even Donkey Skin was ordered to try the ring on. And then the “ugly” serving girl had no trouble at all in proving that not only was the ring hers, but that she really was the beautiful young girl that the prince had seen at the Inn. Everything was soon sorted out and a grand wedding took place that very same day.

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