Andrew Lang was a Scots poet, novelist, and literary critic. He is best known as a collector of folk and fairy tales. Lang gave many of the tales their first appearance in English. Andrew Lang's Fairy Books — are a series of twelve collections of fairy tales. Each volume is distinguished by its own color. In all, 437 tales from a broad range of cultures and countries are presented. "The Water-Lily. The Gold-Spinners" is an Estonian fairy tale included in "The Blue Fairy Book". "The Blue Fairy Book" is probably the volume with the most traditional tales. "The Gold Spinners" begins thus: In a hut hidden deep in a forest, three beautiful maidens spend each waking moment weaving gold flax into yarn. An old woman supervises them, collecting every finished thread. She leaves them only for short journeys - always leaving a full slate of work along with the warning to keep their eyes on their work, and to speak to no man; otherwise the gold will lose its shine and great misfortunes will follow.