The Adventures of Pinocchio by C. Collodi - HTML preview
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The Lovely Maiden with Azure Hair sends for the poor Marionette, puts him to
bed, and calls three Doctors to tell her if Pinocchio is dead or alive
If the poor Marionette had dangled there much longer, all hope would have been
lost. Luckily for him, the Lovely Maiden with Azure Hair once again looked out of
her window. Filled with pity at the sight of the poor little fellow being knocked
helplessly about by the wind, she clapped her hands sharply together three
At the signal, a loud whirr of wings in quick flight was heard and a large Falcon
came and settled itself on the window ledge.
"What do you command, my charming Fairy?" asked the Falcon, bending his
beak in deep reverence (for it must be known that, after all, the Lovely Maiden
with Azure Hair was none other than a very kind Fairy who had lived, for more
than a thousand years, in the vicinity of the forest).
"Do you see that Marionette hanging from the limb of that giant oak tree?"
"I see him."
"Very well. Fly immediately to him. With your strong beak, break the knot which
holds him tied, take him down, and lay him softly on the grass at the foot of the
The Falcon flew away and after two minutes returned, saying, "I have done what
you have commanded."
"How did you find him? Alive or dead?"
"At first glance, I thought he was dead. But I found I was wrong, for as soon as I
loosened the knot around his neck, he gave a long sigh and mumbled with a faint
voice, `Now I feel better!'"
The Fairy clapped her hands twice. A magnificent Poodle appeared, walking on
his hind legs just like a man. He was dressed in court livery. A tricorn trimmed
with gold lace was set at a rakish angle over a wig of white curls that dropped
down to his waist. He wore a jaunty coat of chocolate-colored velvet, with
diamond buttons, and with two huge pockets which were always filled with
bones, dropped there at dinner by his loving mistress. Breeches of crimson
velvet, silk stockings, and low, silver-buckled slippers completed his costume. His
tail was encased in a blue silk covering, which was to protect it from the rain.
"Come, Medoro," said the Fairy to him. "Get my best coach ready and set out
toward the forest. On reaching the oak tree, you will find a poor, half-dead
Marionette stretched out on the grass. Lift him up tenderly, place him on the
silken cushions of the coach, and bring him here to me."
The Poodle, to show that he understood, wagged his silk-covered tail two or
three times and set off at a quick pace.
In a few minutes, a lovely little coach, made of glass, with lining as soft as
whipped cream and chocolate pudding, and stuffed with canary feathers, pulled
out of the stable. It was drawn by one hundred pairs of white mice, and the
Poodle sat on the coachman's seat and snapped his whip gayly in the air, as if he
were a real coachman in a hurry to get to his destination.
In a quarter of an hour the coach was back. The Fairy, who was waiting at the
door of the house, lifted the poor little Marionette in her arms, took him to a dainty
room with mother-of-pearl walls, put him to bed, and sent immediately for the
most famous doctors of the neighborhood to come to her.
One after another the doctors came, a Crow, and Owl, and a Talking Cricket.
"I should like to know, signori," said the Fairy, turning to the three doctors
gathered about Pinocchio's bed, "I should like to know if this poor Marionette is
dead or alive."
At this invitation, the Crow stepped out and felt Pinocchio's pulse, his nose, his
little toe. Then he solemnly pronounced the following words:
"To my mind this Marionette is dead and gone; but if, by any evil chance, he were
not, then that would be a sure sign that he is still alive!"
"I am sorry," said the Owl, "to have to contradict the Crow, my famous friend and
colleague. To my mind this Marionette is alive; but if, by any evil chance, he were
not, then that would be a sure sign that he is wholly dead!"
"And do you hold any opinion?" the Fairy asked the Talking Cricket.
"I say that a wise doctor, when he does not know what he is talking about, should
know enough to keep his mouth shut. However, that Marionette is not a stranger
to me. I have known him a long time!"
Pinocchio, who until then had been very quiet, shuddered so hard that the bed
"That Marionette," continued the Talking Cricket, "is a rascal of the worst kind."
Pinocchio opened his eyes and closed them again.
"He is rude, lazy, a runaway."
Pinocchio hid his face under the sheets.
"That Marionette is a disobedient son who is breaking his father's heart!"
Long shuddering sobs were heard, cries, and deep sighs. Think how surprised
everyone was when, on raising the sheets, they discovered Pinocchio half melted
"When the dead weep, they are beginning to recover," said the Crow solemnly.
"I am sorry to contradict my famous friend and colleague," said the Owl, "but as
far as I'm concerned, I think that when the dead weep, it means they do not want