The tail of the troll

Once upon a time there was a troll who was very proud of his long tail. He bragged about it and said it was the longest tail in the forest. One day the fox decided to play him a trick. He said:

“Come now, you old troll. That tail of yours isn’t long enough for all the vainglory you bestow upon it. Let me pull it out for you,” he said. “I will make it so long you can wrap it seven times around the forest. Then you will have something to boast about.”

Troll don’t like it if you call them old, or say they are bragging, put for a tail as long seven forest they can put up with a lot. And more… And the troll said: “Fine! Pull it out if you think you can. But if you don’t make it as long as you say I will eat you on the spot!”

“Let me worry about that”, said the fox. “You just hold on to that tree over there, as hard as you can, and close your eyes, and I will pull it out for you. At first it will hurt a little. Then it will hurt some more. And then you won’t feel a thing. But don’t let go and don’t open your eyes. I run seven times around the forest and then I’ll be back.”

The troll did what he was told, and the fox started to pull. First it hurt a little. Then it hurt some more. And then he didn’t feel a thing.

Now the fox run around the forest, the troll thought and held on tight, while waiting for the fox to return. But the fox didn’t return. He had pulled the tail loose and ran home with it to his lair.

When the fox come back I will eat him anyway, the troll thought and kept his eyes closed, just has he been told. But the fox didn’t come back. He was making dinner, and before the troll realize he’d been tricked, the fox had invited all his friends for troll tail supper and bragged about how he fooled the troll.

It’s a good thing troll tails grow back so fast, or else, this would have been a terrible story.


This fairy tale in Swedish: Trollsvansen.

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