Part 1: The Miller and His Daughter

ONCE UPON A TIME there was a miller who lived with his daughter. This miller was the sort of fellow who would do whatever it took to get others to admire him.  What was most important was getting a response of “oow!” or “ahh!” from a crowd.  What he actually SAID was not as important.

One day the King happened to be riding through the miler’s village on his way to a hunting trip.  At the time the miller was holding a crowd spellbound by telling them secrets of good health and fortune. The King saw the crowd and bellowed out, “What’s going on?”

Everyone turned.  “It’s the King!”  “What, the KING?!”  Everyone bowed down low.  

The King saw the crowd and bellowed out, "What's going on?"

The miller thought, “This is my chance.  If I can impress the King by saying something clever, everyone will look up to me forever.  “Your Majesty,” the miller stood and continued to bow, “I was simply telling folks some of my secrets to wealth and fortune.”

“What secrets of wealth and fortune do you know about?” said the King, noticing his worn work clothes.  Every time the miller moved, clouds of flour puffed up around him.

"This is my chance.  If I can impress the King by saying something clever, everyone will look up to me forever."

“Even a poor miller such as myself,” said he with a nod, “can stumble onto secrets to wealth and gold.”

The King was not convinced.

“Why, changing one’s humble circumstances is, well, like spinning straw into gold,” the miller continued, warming up to the topic. “And I should know, Your Majesty, as my own daughter can do that very thing - that is, spin straw into gold. Why, there is no doubt that she is the most clever and talented young maiden in all the kingdom!”

“You say your daughter can spin straw into gold?” said the King. “Why, this young woman must come to my palace, tonight!”

“Uh, Your Majesty, what I meant was in a manner of speaking—” the miller said quickly. 

“Silence!” said the King, who was no longer listening.  “Bring her over tonight, I command it!”

The miller wished he could take it back.  Now it was too late.

"Bring her over tonight, I command it!"

When the miller told his daughter what he had told the King about her, she was distraught as you can imagine.  "Father, why did you say said such a thing to the King?"  Still, she had not choice but to go to the King's palace. 

At the palace door, the miller’s daughter was immediately whisked inside.  She was led to a small room.  Inside a small room was a spinning wheel, an empty basket, and a bale of straw.  The King entered.  He pointed to the straw and boomed, “By morning, I expect to find THIS bale of straw spun into balls of gold thread in THIS basket.  If this is not done, off with your head!  I don’t appreciate being made a fool of by a miller!”

The King turned around and slammed the door, locking it with a padlock.  He stationed two guards outside the door.  The girl was all alone.  “What has my father done?” she moaned.  “How could he put me in this situation?  No one can do this impossible task!”

Just then, an odd little man stood before her.  "Did I hear, 'no one'?" he said.

“Wait!" said the girl, shocked.  "How did you get in here?” 

“Never mind that,” said the imp.  “What matters is I can save your life.  If you make it worth my while, that is.”

"You're telling me that you can actually spin straw into gold?" said the girl in disbelief. He nodded. 

She wondered if she should trust this stranger who appeared out of thin air and claimed to do the impossible.  But then again, what choice did she have?  "Very well, “ she said.  “What is your price?” 


Part 2: You Have to Give

The imp pointed to her neck.  “How about that necklace?” he said.  

The maiden was puzzled.  If the little man could really spin straw into gold, he could buy any necklace he wanted.  Why would he do all this work and only get a necklace?  Still, he seemed to be her only chance to save her life and so she wasn’t about to ask too many questions. 

She said, “By morning if you can spin this bale of straw into gold thread, the necklace is yours.”

The little man got to work.  Whirr, whirr, whirr, went the spinning wheel.  The girl fell asleep sitting against a wall.  By morning, the bale of straw was gone.  Piled inside the basket were balls of gleaming gold thread. 

“You did it!” said she, amazed. "Well then, a deal is a deal." She handed over the necklace and in a puff, he was gone.

When the King stepped into the room, he saw the basket was filled to the brim with balls of sparkling gold thread.  He knew the room had been locked and two guards were stationed outside the door all night, so it must be true that she could actually spin straw into gold.  

“Now if you please, sir,” said the girl with a curtsy.  “May I go home?”

“Not on your life!” bellowed the King.  “I will have my servants bring a dozen bales of straw to fill a room larger than this one. You will stay there tonight.  Beware – by morning all the straw must be spun into gold.  If you care about your life!”

"Not on your life!' bellowed the King.

“But I already–!” said the girl.

“I am the KING!” he roared.  And the King slammed the door behind him.

“Oh, no!” the girl called out.  “I was lucky last night.  What are the chances I'll be lucky again?”

“Pretty good, I'd say,” said a voice.  The girl turned.  That odd little man again!

“How do you get in here?” she asked.

“Focus!” said the Imp.  “I can do this job for you, but what do I get for it? Hmm... how about that ring?”

The girl looked at her ring - her favorite. “But after all," she thought, "it is just a ring.”  So she agreed.  

All night, the imp spun the straw.  By morning, there were no more bales of straw on the floor.  And the dozen baskets were laden full of glistening, golden balls of thread.

The girl gave him the ring as promised.

Well, if two rooms of gold look good to a king, you can imagine that three rooms look even better.  The King took the girl to his royal banquet hall, a room so large you could barely see from one end to another.  He had filled the banquet room from floor to ceiling with bales of straw on one side and empty baskets stacked on the other.  As before, she must spin all the straw in the room to gold by morning.  Or else!

However this time, the King told her he was busy the next morning and wouldn’t be the one to check in on her himself.  His son had returned that day from a trip, so he would send the Prince in his stead. If all the straw were spun to gold, said the King, his son would marry her.  The King thought to himself, "Even if she's only a miller's daughter, with that talent of spinning straw into gold, she is a fitting bride."  What he bellowed to the girl was that if she could not do the task, she would marry no one at all for she would die!

When the King left, the girl fell into a deep gloom.  Even if the little man were to appear again and spin all that straw into gold, she’d only have to marry a prince who was no doubt as cruel and horrible as his father.  Either way, she was stuck! 

When she lifted her head, there was that little man standing before her again.  “So, what have you to give me this time?” he said.

Rumpelstiltskin comforting the girl.

“I don’t have any more jewelry to pay you,” she said.  “And even if I did, I’d only have to marry a horrible prince so what’s the point?”

“We will come to a good price,” said the imp. And he went to work, spinning the straw into gold.

“Stop!” said the girl.  “I told you, I can’t pay you. Please stop!”  But the imp did not stop.  He spun and spun, though the girl waved at him from all angles and begged him to stop.  But it was no use.

By morning, the job was done.  “There!” said the imp.  “Now we’ll talk price.”

“That’s not fair!” said the girl. 

“That's not fair!" said the girl.

"Lots of things in life aren't fair," said the imp with a shrug. “But don’t worry.  I know you don’t have anything to give me … now.  But later, when you become Queen, I will take as my payment … your first-born child.”

“What?!” said the girl.  “I can’t imagine I would ever become Queen.  But if that ever happened, I would never agree to give up my child!” 

“Ah, but you already did!” said the imp.  “The straw is spun.  The deal is done.”  He turned and was gone.

A moment later, there was a knock on the door.  This was different – the King always barged in.  A young man stepped in.


Part 3: The Prince

 "Miss, are you all right?" said he.  "I just learned what’s been going on here.  I know my father can be tough."

"That’s an understatement," she said under her breath.  Was that a smile that passed between them? 

The Prince looked around and saw balls of shining gold thread overflowing the baskets.  "So it’s true!” he marveled.  “This is why my father is bent on our getting married.”  The girl hung her head.  Getting married into this royal family was the last thing she wanted.  Surely they would soon find out that she can't turn straw into gold.  Then what would happen?  She had to get out of this marriage!  But how?  

She had to get out of this marriage!  But how?

“You want to get out of here, don’t you?” said the Prince quietly.  The miller's daughter nodded.  She couldn't risk that the Prince might think that she didn't want to marry him.  These things can be tricky.  “But what to tell my father?” said the Prince, pacing the room. “I know! I’ll tell him you’re already married.  No, wait!  Maybe if you have some terrible disease.” She stared at him.  Was this Prince really trying to help her?  “The trouble is," he continued, "he’ll never let you go if he thinks you can keep spinning straw into gold. We need to come up with a reason why that would have to stop.  Maybe some kind of temporary magical ability?”

“That’s closer to the truth than you know,” she said.

They came up with all kinds of reasons why she couldn’t possibly get married, some pretty bizarre, and laughed.  Then having nothing better to do, the two of them started to talk about other things.  They chatted the rest of the day.  By sunset, the girl felt that if this kind, clever young man would someday ask her to marry him, she might actually say Yes.  At last, the two of them came up with a plan.  The Prince would tell the King that he could keep the gold only if the maiden were set free now.  If she was kept her at the palace even one day more, all the gold would turn back to straw.  

The King was spooked by magic, and so he agreed.  Finally, the maiden could go home!  A month later, the terrible old King died.  The Prince found the village where the miller's daughter lived and invited her and her father to come to the palace.  When she and the Prince (now the King) visited, they found they had just as much to talk about as before.  It wasn't long before the two of them realized they were falling in love.  Before long tyhey were married.


Part 4: The First Born Child

In time, the new Queen had a baby of her own, a son.  Joy filled the palace.  

One day, when the Queen was alone in the garden, the imp appeared before her. “Give me what you promised!” said the imp, pointing at the baby.  “We agreed.  Give me that baby, now!” 

“I never agreed to that!” said the Queen.  She held her baby tightly in her arms. She said, “I can give you gold instead.”

“Don’t make me laugh!” said the little man.  “I can spin all the gold I want!”

“I will give you a castle,” said the Queen.

"Don't make me laugh!" said the little man.  

“I come and go where I want,” said the imp.  “What do I want with a castle?”

“I will give you servants who will take care of you day and night,” said the queen.

“No one takes care of me!” said the imp.  “I come and go as I please.  No one even knows my name!”

“I will find out your name,” said the queen.

“Oh, REALLY?” said the imp.  For he knew that no one on earth knew his name. He had made it up himself and had never told a soul.

“Oh, REALLY?" said the imp.

“Very well,” he said.  “You think you can find out my name?  I give you three days.  After three days, if you cannot tell me my name, the baby is mine forever.  If you can guess my name, keep the baby for all I care.  And tell no one about this!  If you say but one word to anyone, the baby will disappear at once and you'll never see him again!” 

Three days is a long time, thought the Queen.  Plenty of time to gather every name possible.  The imp didn’t say she couldn’t get her servants to help.  So she agreed to his terms.

The next day, the Queen wrote down every name she could think of.  She ordered her servants to come up with every name they could think of, too, from their home countries and faraway lands.  The servants did not know why they needed to do this, but Kings and Queens make a lot of odd requests and they did their best to comply.   

That night when the imp appeared, the Queen shook out a scroll of names that fell to the floor.  

“Could your name be Nathan?” she said.  “Lucas? Jacob?  Hugo? Jerome? Maximillian?  Pointdexter?”  She went on and on.

“Not even close!” laughed the imp.  “See you tomorrow night.”  He was gone.

The second day, the Queen looked through every book she had read.  Her servants went through every book stored in the royal library.  She collected names from faraway places.  Names she had never heard of.  

That night when the imp appeared, the Queen read her list.  

“Perhaps your name is Abner,” she said.  “No? How about Gunnar?”  “Alfonso?” “Silas?” And many more.

“This is boring!” said the imp.  “But I will not be bored tomorrow night.  On the third night that baby is mine!”  He laughed again and was gone.

“This is boring!" said the imp.

The Queen stayed up all night that night, coming up with every bizarre name she could think of.  She had her servants do the same.  They were writing down names such as “Roast ribs,” or “Sheepshark,” “Gorglethorpe,” or “Spindleshank.”  “We’re just guessing!” she said in despair.  She put on her royal cape and hood, and walked outside the castle.  “If I have peace and quiet, maybe I will think of something,” she thought.  

The Queen went into the woods. She followed the woods to the deepest, thickest part, so deep it was dark there even though it was daytime. All of a sudden, the queen saw the light of a fire far away.  And heard a voice, too.  There was something about that voice, but what?  She stepped closer.  There in front of a fire danced a little man.  It was he, the very same imp!  


Very quietly, the queen listened.


Part 5: Rumpelstiltskin

As the little man danced, he sang:

          Today I brew.  Tomorrow I bake.

          Then the child I shall take.

          The queen will never win this game

          For Rumpelstiltskin is my name!

“Rumpelstiltskin!” the queen thought to herself.  She tip-toed backward, very quietly, and made her way back to the palace.

That night when Rumpelstiltskin appeared, the queen went through a few more names.  “Is your name Yusaf?  Bobek? How about Salaman?”

“No, a thousand times, no!” said the imp.  “You are wasting my time.  I give you one last guess.  Then that's the end!”

“No, a thousand times, no!" said the imp.

“Well, I am sure this is not right.  But could your name possibly be – Rumpelstiltskin?”

“RUMPELSTILTSKIN?” yelled the imp.  “How could you know?”  He was so mad that he stamped his feet so hard that a very big hole opened in the ground, and he fell right down into it.  Rumpelstiltskin was never seen again.  

The Queen and her husband the King ruled happily and well for the rest of their days.  As so may you.




Bedtime Stories for Kids


  • The girl's father said something about her that was not true (that she could spin straw into gold). Tell about a time when something was said about you that was not true.
  • The girl worked hard to find out Rumpelstiltskin’s real name. Tell about a time when you worked hard to get something that you wanted.
Posted in Bedtime Stories, STORIES FOR KIDS.


  1. I did not play on my phone at school.

    my allowance. I really wanted to have one so I did a lot of chores and I got it.

    some people may seem nice but are not. Never let your guard down

  2. 1. once my old friend told this kid who was bulling us that I did karate I said nothing not denying or proving this fact however the bully believed it.

    2. one time I was very sick and was not able to go to school but I still tried to be present and listen eventually the teacher told me to just go and rest at least I knew I didn’t miss anything

  3. I think that the story is trying to tell me is that you should not say what is not true, and you should work hard in things you need and want to figure out.

  4. Question 1 : My lil bro told me I didn’t read anything, but I’ve read at least 5 books.

    Question 2:I worked very hard to paint a princess that looked real.

  5. Question 1: my brother said I was naughty, but it’s not true.

    Question 2: I worked hard to draw a picture of a lion.

  6. I listened to the story. That was very interesting. I would love to listen to more such stories. What I loved more about this story is that the pronunciations were quite clear to understand.

  7. I read bedtime stories to my girlfriend because she has insomnia/anxiety. Thanks so much for making a long, wonderous story to ease her.

  8. Once I was with my cousin named Sidra. I had a French class and she said that I was lying about it.

    I had a maid, and begged her to go market and buy me something.

  9. OMG I read this story to my little sister and before long, she was asleep. I sometimes think that this story has magic in it that makes kids sleep. My sister was asleep but that doesn’t mean that I can’t finish the story alone.

  10. I think that the King was forceful, Rumpelstiltskin a little needy, and I think that the girl/Queen and the prince are a really nice couple. All in all this story was not what I expected, but I liked it.

  11. It is a very nice story.
    I will surely tell this to my little brother when I meet him the next time.
    Wish a Good Day / Night to all of you.

  12. Thank you for making this story, I enjoyed it and I hope I can tell the story to my little baby brother 1 day! I wish you all a good night/day.

  13. 1. Well there have been lots of lies told about me. one of them was that i had a boyfriend in 6th grade…

    2. Well, if i see something at the store that i want, i usually don’t have money because i only get money for my birthday, so i have to do chores to work it off.

  14. Today , today I read a story

    Tomorrow , tomorrow I learn more words

    I love your story it is very interesting

    I hope you make more story for us ٩(˃̶͈̀௰˂̶͈́)و

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