A Short Story For Kids: The Elves And The Shoemaker – By Brothers Grimm

 


A long time ago, there lived a shoemaker who was very hardworking. He was an honest man, but couldn’t make enough money to provide for his family’s daily needs. He had lost all his possessions, the only thing remaining was just a little piece of leather enough to make a pair of shoes.

In the evening, he carefully cut out the required leather needed to make the pair of shoes, ready to start his work early the next morning. Despite his challenges, he didn’t let it weigh him down, so he went to sleep leaving everything to God.

The next day when he woke up from his bed, said his prayers, and did his morning chores, he sat down to begin his work, but to his greatest surprise, the shoes have been made and were set on the table. He couldn’t believe what he was seeing, he looked at the craft, it was neatly done and stitched. It was a masterpiece.

Later that day, a customer came by and bought the shoe. Because it was such a beauty, he paid extra than the normal price. The shoemaker was very pleased. He quickly hurried to the market with the money and bought leather enough to make two more pairs.

When evening came, he carefully cut out the required leather to make the shoes and went to sleep. He had hoped to begin the work early the next morning. On the morning of the next day, after his morning duties, he sat down to begin his work only to find the work all done and ready for sales. He inspected them as usual, it was all neatly done. A customer came by later that day and page huge sums for the shoes so that the shoemaker had enough money to buy leather for four pairs more.

He hurried to the market and got the leather. At home, he sat down and cut out the leather as usual. It was so late in the night, so he decided to sleep and finish up the main work in the morning. Again, when he woke up it was all ready for sales. This continued for a very long time, whatever he prepared in the evening, got ready by morning. So the honest shoemaker soon started excelling and became prosperous.

One Christmas evening, the shoemaker and his wife sat by the fire discussing, “I would like to stay up tonight to see who it is that comes to work for me at night;” the shoemaker said to his wife. The words of the shoemaker pleased his wife and they both agreed to stay up that night. They lit a light in the workplace and hid behind a curtain to see what would happen.

At midnight, two naked dwarfs went into the shoemaker’s workplace, sat upon his bench, took out all the cut out leathers, and began to work. They work at a rate that fascinated the shoemaker. He has never seen anything of such. The stitching, rapping, and tapping were all neatly done and in record time. Soon, the whole work was done and the dwarfs hurried away like lightning before morning came.

In the morning, the wife of the shoemaker said to him, “the dwarfs have made us wealthy, we have to show gratitude and repay them for their kindness. It is not quite pleasing to see them go around without clothes on their backs to keep them from cold. You know what, I will make them some clothes, while you make them little pair of shoes.”

 “That would be great honey,” the shoemaker replied.

That evening, they got everything ready and set them on the table. This time the shoemaker didn’t cut out any leather to be worked on.

At midnight, when the dwarfs came in dancing and skipping around the room, they went into the workplace and sat down to get ready for work. What they saw surprised them, instead of leather, they saw clothes and some shoes on the table for them. It so pleased them that they quickly wore them in no time. They danced and danced till they left the shoemaker’s place and away they went.

They never returned to the shoemaker’s place again, but the shoemaker and his wife lived happily and things went well for them.

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