Public Domain Super Heroes

Three Bears

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The Three Bears

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Three anthropomorphic bears – "a little, a small, and a "wee bear" – live together in a house in the woods. They are understood as very good-natured, trusting, harmless, tidy, and hospitable. Each of these "bachelor" bears has his own porridge bowl, chair, and bed. One day, they take a walk in the woods while their porridge cools. An old woman who, in some stories, is described as being not-so-old (who is described at various points in the story as impudent, bad, foul-mouthed, ugly, dirty and a vagrant deserving of a stint in the House of Correction), discovers the bears' dwelling. She looks through a window, peeps through the keyhole, and lifts the latch. Assured that no one is home, she walks in. The old woman eats the Wee Bear's porridge, then settles into his chair and breaks it. Prowling about, she finds the bears' beds and falls asleep in Wee Bear's bed. The climax of the tale is reached when the bears return. Wee Bear finds the old woman in his bed and cries, "Somebody has been lying in my bed, – and here she is!" The old woman starts up, jumps from the window, and runs away never to be seen again.

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