Pitré, Fiabe, Novelle e Racconti popolari Siciliani. Palermo, 1875. vol. i. Story No. XLI, p. 366. (Told at Noto to Signor Mattia De Martino.)
Ill-treated heroine (by step-mother)--Menial heroine--Helpful animal (ewe) performs task---Spy on heroine--Slaying of helpful animal--Eating taboo--Revivified bones: twelve damsels befriend heroine--Magic dresses--Meeting-place (ball)--Two fold flight--Heroine shakes pearls from her hair to detain pursuers; (2) Throws shoe--Shoe marriage test--Happy marriage.
(1) Heroine is ill-treated by stepmother, who gives her work to do daily, and only lets her eat when she has finished it.-- (2) Heroine's father one day finds a little ewe in the fields, and takes it home to his daughter, whom he loves. The ewe seeing heroine ill-used, comforts her, and bids her put her work between its horns and it will be done for her.-- (3) Stepmother seeing work finished in no time, watches and finds out how it is done. Then she suggests that evening to father that ewe's throat shall be cut, for Carnival is at hand. Father answers nothing, but heroine goes weeping to tell ewe, who bids her be comforted, take care to eat none of its flesh, but to collect its bones and bury them under the floor.-- (4) Heroine does as bidden, and a little time after, at the place where bones are buried, there issue twelve damsels.-- (5) They clothe heroine all in gold, and take her to king's ball. King falls in love with her, and does not quit her side all the evening. When she leaves, he bids his servants find out where she lives. Heroine, seeing she is followed, lets down her hair and shakes out a shower of pearls, which servants stop to pick up.-- (6) Next evening, king says servants must find out where she lives on pain of death. This time heroine can only throw off her slipper and fly.-- (7) Servants carry it to king, who proclaims that he will wed whomsoever it fits. All women try in vain.-- (8) Stepmother, thinking to mortify heroine, takes her also, and is astounded to find shoe fits her perfectly. Chapel-royal is ready, and the joy is great.