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The Fisherman and His Wife

        | HSW

One day the fisherman caught a fish who could talk!
One day the fisherman caught a fish who could talk!
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

Once upon a time, a poor fisherman and his wife lived in a little cottage near a river. Every day the fisherman went to the river and fished for their dinner.

One day the fisherman caught a magical fish in his net. It said, "Fisherman, I beg you to let me live. I am not really a fish, I am an enchanted prince. Please let me swim away."

The fisherman quickly agreed to let the fish go. "Say no more," said the fisherman. "I am quite willing to set free a fish that can talk!"

"For that, I will grant you a wish," said the fish, but the fisherman said there was nothing he needed.

The fisherman let the fish go free. When he went home, his wife asked, "Husband, what have you caught for me to cook for our dinner?"

Because he had let the fish go, the fisherman brought home nothing for dinner.
Because he had let the fish go, the fisherman brought home nothing for dinner.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

"I haven't brought anything home," he said. "I did catch a big fish. But he claimed to be an enchanted prince, so I threw him back into the water."

"Oh dear!" she said. "You might at least have made a wish before you set him free!"

"I couldn't think of anything that we needed," replied her husband. "What would you have wished for?"

"Well, we certainly could use a nicer place to live. I'm sure that if you go back and ask the fish for a nicer house, he will gladly give it to you!"

The fisherman did not really think that they needed a nicer house, but he did as his wife asked.

The fisherman went to the river and called:

Princely fish that I set free,

Hear my words and come to me.

Just as soon as the fisherman had finished reciting this rhyme, the fish appeared. "Why did you call me?" the fish asked.

The fisherman was a little nervous, but he got up his nerve and answered, "My wife would like to make a wish after all."

"And what is her wish?" asked the fish.

"She doesn't want to live in a tiny cottage anymore," said the fisherman. "She would like to live in a nicer home."

"Go home to your wife," said the fish. "She already has her wish."

The fisherman came home to find his wife in a brand new house.
The fisherman came home to find his wife in a brand new house.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

The fisherman hurried back home. There was his wife waving from the doorway of a pretty, new house.

The house was filled with everything they could possibly need. "Now we can be happy," the fisherman said.

Continue to the next page to find out what happened next.

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