Long ago, in a faraway place, there lived a lovely princess named Snow White. Her hair was black as coal, her lips red as rose, and her skin as white as snow. Snow White's stepmother, the Queen, was very cruel.
She hated anyone who was more beautiful than she. The Queen treated Snow White like a servant. Snow White never complained. She was obedient and hard-working, but she dreamed of a handsome prince who would take her away to his castle. One day, while drawing water from the well, a handsome stranger did appear, charmed by Snow White's singing.
But Snow White was too shy to speak to him. Inside the castle, the Queen asked her magic mirror, "Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who is the fairest one of all?" Every day the mirror had the same reply. "You are the fairest," he told her. And the Queen was content for another day.
But as Snow White grew older, she also grew more beautiful. And the Queen became very jealous. One day the magic mirror told the Queen that someone else was the fairest in the land. It was the princess, Snow White! In a jealous rage, the Queen called her royal huntsman into the throne room. "Take Snow White far into the forest and kill her," she commanded. "And as proof of your deed, bring me back her heart in this."
She handed the stunned huntsman a beautiful carved box. "Poor Snow White," said the hunter to the innocent princess. "I cannot kill you. You must run away and hide from the Queen!" Snow White was so frightened that she ran off through the dark woods. At last she came to a cottage. "Who lives here?" Snow White wondered.
Then she heard voices singing in the distance. The seven dwarfs who lived in the cottage were coming home from a hard day at work in the diamond mine.
The dwarfs introduced themselves. Their names were Sleepy, Grumpy, Happy, Doc, Dopey, Sneezy, and Bashful. They invited Snow White to share their supper. Snow White felt so safe with the dwarfs that she decided to stay with them. But the evil Queen soon found out that Snow White was still alive. She would have to take matters into her own wicked hands.
She fled to the dungeon beneath the castle. There the Queen mixed a potion that would change her into an old hag. Then she took an apple and slowly dipped it into another potion. "One bite of this poisoned apple and Snow White will close her eyes forever!" she cackled.
The old woman appeared at Snow White's window. "Hello, dearie," she said. "Taste one of my delicious apples. It's apple pies that make menfolk's mouths water. Pies made from apples like these." Then she held the poisoned apple out to Snow White.
The birds tried to warn Snow White away from the poisoned fruit. They fluttered and flew around the hag, trying to make her drop the apple. "Stop it! Stop it!" cried Snow White. The birds flew away sadly. Then the animals of the forest ran to the dwarfs to warn them that something was very wrong and they needed to come right home!
The seven dwarfs raced to the cottage and found the old woman trying to sneak away and Snow White lying lifeless on the floor. The dwarfs chased the hag into the forest. A storm began to blow as the evil woman ran away. Suddenly she came to the edge of a steep and rocky cliff.
First she tried to move a huge rock so it would roll down on top of the poor dwarfs and crush them. "Look out!" cried Grumpy to the others. At that moment, lightning struck. The Queen lost her balance and fell to her doom! The sad little dwarfs built a bed of gold and glass for their beloved Snow White. They kept watch over her, day and night.
Then one day a handsome prince rode into the forest. How beautiful the young woman was! The Prince knelt down and kissed Snow White tenderly. His kiss awakened her. Snow White and the Prince rode off to his kingdom, where they lived happily ever after.
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