The Blue Fairy Book
The Yellow Dwarf
Once upon a time there lived a queen who had been the mother of a great many
children, and of them all only one daughter was left. But then SHE was worth at
least a thousand.
Her mother, who, since the death of the King, her father, had nothing in the world
she cared for so much as this little Princess, was so terribly afraid of losing her
that she quite spoiled her, and never tried to correct any of her faults. The
consequence was that this little person, who was as pretty as possible, and was
one day to wear a crown, grew up so proud and so much in love with her own
beauty that she despised everyone else in the world.
The Queen, her mother, by her caresses and flatteries, helped to make her
believe that there was nothing too good for her. She was dressed almost always
in the prettiest frocks, as a fairy, or as a queen going out to hunt, and the ladies
of the Court followed her dressed as forest fairies.
And to make her more vain than ever the Queen caused her portrait to be taken
by the cleverest painters and sent it to several neighboring kings with whom she
was very friendly.
When they saw this portrait they fell in love with the Princess--every one of them,
but upon each it had a different effect. One fell ill, one went quite crazy, and a
few of the luckiest set off to see her as soon as possible, but these poor princes
became her slaves the moment they set eyes on her.
Never has there been a gayer Court. Twenty delightful kings did everything they
could think of to make themselves agreeable, and after having spent ever so
much money in giving a single entertainment thought themselves very lucky if the
Princess said "That's pretty."