IT happened that once there lived in a certain land a Tsar and a Tsaritsa. They had a son, Ivan Tsare-vich. When an infant the maidens rocked him; but do what they might, they could not rock him to sleep. "Tsar, great Gosudar, come, rock thy own son." The Tsar went to rock the child: "Sleep, little son, sleep my own dear; thou wilt grow up a man. I will get thee Peerless Beauty as bride, - the daughter of three mothers, the granddaughter of three grandmothers, and the sister of nine brothers." The Tsarevich went to sleep and slept for three days and three nights; woke up, and cried more than before.

The maidens rock him, but they cannot rock him to sleep; they call his father: "Tsar, great Gosudar, come, rock thy own son".

The Tsar rocked him, saying, "Sleep, little son, sleep, my own dear; thou wilt grow up a man. I will get thee Peerless Beauty as bride, the daughter of three mothers, the granddaughter of three grandmothers, and the sister of nine brothers." The Tsarevich fell asleep, and again slept three days and three nights. He woke up and cried more than.ever.

The maidens rock him, they cannot rock him to sleep. "Come, Tsar, great Gosudar," said they, "rock thy own son".

The Tsar rocked him, saying the while, "Sleep, little son, sleep, my own dear; thou wilt grow up a man. I will get thee Peerless Beauty as bride, the daughter of three mothers, the granddaughter of three grandmothers".

The Tsarevich fell asleep and slept again three days and three nights. He woke up and said, "Give thy blessing, father; I am going to marry".

"What dost thou mean, my dear little child? Whither canst thou go? Thou art but nine days of age in all".

"If thou wilt give me thy blessing, I'll go; if not, I'll go also".

"Well, the Lord guide thee".

Ivan Tsarevich arrayed himself, and went to find a horse. He went a short way from the house, and met an old man. "Where art thou going, young man," asked he, - "of thy own will, or against thy will?"

"I will not talk with thee," answered the Tsarevich. He went on a little, changed his mind. " Why did I not say something to the old man. Old people bring us to sense." Straightway he overtook the old man. "Stop, grandfather. Of what didst thou ask me?"

"I asked where art thou going, young man, - of thy own will, or against thy will?"

"I go so much of my own will, and twice that much against my will. I was in early years; my father rocked me in the cradle; he promised to get me Peerless Beauty as bride".

"Thou art a good youth, thou art well spoken; but thou canst not go on foot. Peerless Beauty dwells far away".

"How far?"

"In the Golden Kingdom, at the end of the white world, where the sun comes up".

"What am I to do? I, young man, have no saddle-horse unridden, and silken whip unused that are fitting for me".

"Why hast thou not? Thy father has thirty horses all alike. Go home, tell the grooms to water them at the blue sea; and whichever horse shall push ahead, enter the water to its neck, and when it drinks, waves rise on the blue sea and roll from shore to shore, that one take".

"God save thee for the good word, grandfather!"

As the old man taught him, so did the Tsarevich do, - he chose for himself an heroic steed, passed the night, rose next morning early, opened the gate, and was preparing to go.

The horse spoke to him in the language of men: "Ivan Tsarevich, drop to the earth; I will push thee three times."He pushed him once, he pushed him twice; but the third time he pushed not. "If thou wert pushed a third time, the earth would not bear thee and me".

Ivan Tsarevich took his horse from the chains, saddled him, sat on him. The Tsar barely sees his son. He rides far, far. The day is growing short, night is coming on. A house stood like a town, each room is a chamber. He came to the house, straight to the porch, tied his horse to the copper ring, went into the first chamber, then into the second, prayed to God, asked to spend the night.

"Stay the night, good youth," said an old woman. "Whither is God bearing thee?"

"Old woman, thou dost ask impolitely. First give me to eat and to drink, put me to rest, and then ask me for news".

She gave him food and drink, put him to bed, and then asked for news.

"I was, grandmother," said he, "in tender years; my father rocked me in the cradle, and promised me Peerless Beauty as bride, - the daughter of three mothers, the granddaughter of three grandmothers, and the sister of nine brothers".

"Thou art a good youth, and fair spoken. I am living to the end of the seventh ten of years, and of that beauty I have not heard. Farther on the road lives my elder sister; maybe she knows. But sleep now; the morning is wiser than the evening".

Ivan Tsarevich passed the night; next morning he rose early, washed himself white, led forth his steed, saddled him, put his foot in the stirrup. The old woman merely saw him. He rode far with distance, high with height; the day was shortening, coming toward night. There stood a house like a town, each room was a chamber. He rode to the porch, tied his horse to a silver ring, went to the entrance, and then to the chamber, prayed to God, asked a night's lodging. An old woman said: "Tfu, tfu! so far a Russian bone was not seen with sight nor heard with hearing; but now a Russian bone has come itself to the house. Where hast thou come from, Ivan Tsarevich?"

"Oh, thou old hag, how angry thou art! Thou dost not ask with politeness; thou shouldst first give me food and drink, put me to rest, then ask for news".

She seated him at the table, gave him food and drink, put him to rest, sat at the head of the bed, and inquired; "Where is God bearing thee?"

"I was in tender years, grandmother; my father rocked me in the cradle and promised me Peerless Beauty as bride, - the daughter of three mothers, the granddaughter of three grandmothers, and the sister of nine brothers".