Nail Soup: A Swedish Folk Tale
. Follett Publishing Company . Chicago
PZ8.1.Z38 Nai 1964 (Carlson Fable Collection, BIC bldg)
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A tramp trying to find his way home from around the world meets a poor old woman in the forest and begs her for lodging for the night. She finally relents and lets him sleep on her floor. He turns out to be something of a poet. She turns out to be greedy and stingy. When she claims in answer to his request for food that she has not eaten all day, he says that she had better lend him a pot so that he can make her some dinner. As the water is getting hot, he puts in a nail. Then he starts to mention the things that could help the soup, starting with some flour or oatmeal. Soon he is mentioning beef and potatoes and then barley and milk. Once the soup is ready, he mentions that it is what the king eats, but always with a tablecloth, and wine, and a sandwich…. The soup is so good that they eat and drink and dance around the room. The woman finally sleeps on the floor herself and gives him her bed to sleep in and coffee, a bun, and a silver piece for the road. This book was earlier a holding of some library in Pennsylvania.