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Max and Moritz - Widow Bolte

Max and Moritz Play a Trick on Widow Bolte -Four hens, four pieces of bread and a poor dog

Two rascals called Max and Moritz lived in a village. They loved playing tricks on the people who lived in the village. Here you can see all the things they got up to.

The widow Bolte had three hens and a cockerel. She made a great effort with her chickens as they supplied her with eggs, provided a delicious roast and their warm feathers filled the pillow and the quilt.  

Max and Moritz decided to play a trick on widow Bolte and the chickens. They cut a loaf of bread into four pieces, each one as thick as a finger. They tied these pieces criss-cross together with a thread and laid them out in the yard. As soon as the cock saw this he crowed "Cock-a-doodle-doo! Cock-a-doodle-doo!" The hens came running up straight away and each of them swallowed down a piece of bread. But when they wanted to separate again, they noticed that they couldn't, because they were tied to each other with the thread. The chickens yelled out, ran in all directions and finally flew upwards, where they got caught on a branch. And as they hung that way, their necks got longer and longer. Each of them quickly laying an egg before they died.

When Widow Bolte saw the four dead hens hanging from the branch she wept a lot. She took a knife and cut down the dead birds. No sooner had she recovered from her hurt when she decided to fry the chickens and eat them. Her dog stood next to the oven and watched.

Max and Moritz smelt the delicious aroma and climbed onto the roof. They saw the chickens frying in the pan through the chimney. When widow Bolte went into the cellar, the two rascals let down a hook through the chimney and pulled the chickens up, one after the other. The dog had seen everything and yelped anxiously. The widow came back into the kitchen, saw the empty pan and thought that the dog had eaten the chickens. Max and Moritz didn't get to hear about that. They lay under the hedge with fat tummies. Only one chicken leg was still sticking out of their mouth.