The Complete Brothers Grimm Fairy Tales |
This collection of "classics" certainly is a departure from the Disney versions. The tales are mostly very dark and pessimistic, as originally recorded by the Brothers. For the more "colourful" children's stories it is better to buy the specific tales from the bookstore instead of a collective book.
This story is available in the following languages
THE LION GOES TO WAR
Once upon a time... a lion decided to go to war. He summoned his ministers,
and called together his army with this proclamation: "King Lion commands that
all animals in the forest must come before him tomorrow to go to war. Nobody
must fail to appear."
The lion's subjects all presented themselves punctually and the lion issued
the orders: "Elephant, you're the largest, you'll transport the guns and all
the supplies. You, fox, have a reputation for cunning, so you'll help me draw
up the plans of battle to beat off enemy attacks. You, monkey, nimble and good
at climbing trees, will act as lookout and spy the enemy's movements from
above. Bear, you're strong and agile, so you'll scale the fortress walls and
terrorize the enemy."
Amongst those present were also the rabbit and the donkey. When the king's
ministers saw them, they shook their heads, then one said: "Sire, I don't think
the donkey will make a good soldier. They say he is easily frightened."
The lion looked at the donkey, then turning to his ministers, he remarked:
"He brays louder than I can roar. He'll stay at my side and be the trumpet
that will rally the troops."
The ministers then pointed to the rabbit: "He's even more nervous than the
donkey. We should send him home!"
Again the lion stood thoughtfully for a moment, then going over to the
rabbit he said: "You always flee from your enemies, so you've learned that you
have to be faster than the others if you're to survive. So you'll act as
messenger, and within seconds, all the soldiers will receive my orders." Then,
turning to the crowd, he said: "Everyone can make himself useful in a war;
everyone can help the common cause as best as he is able!"