Great bedtime stories for kids

30 Best Bedtime Stories for Kids, Including Free Bedtime Stories Online | MommyPoppins

Sometimes all you need is a really great bedtime story for kids: The homework's finished, the dishes are piled in the sink, the children are snuggled in their beds ... and they're still awake. A truly tantalizing tale bedtime is the final piece of the bedtime puzzle. Whether you read these books to your kids, read them together as a family, or play the audio versions, these beloved bedtime stories for kids will help them drift off to dreamland in no time. There are even some free bedtime stories you can easily access online, for those nights when you need something new.

Dim the lights, get cozy, and crack open one of these 30 great bedtime stories for kids. For even more great books, check out our lists of 100 kids' books every child should read before they grow up, the best LGBTQ books for kids, and more beloved book recommendations in our Guide to the Best Kids' Books.

Listen to Goldilocks and the Three Bears for free online.  Original illustration by Joanna Pasek

Free Bedtime Stories for Kids Online


Goldilocks and the Three Bears

With a slightly modern twist, this story (like many fairy tales) holds a lesson. A little girl finds the home of the three bears during a walk in the forest. While they're out she eats their oatmeal, sits in their chairs, and sleeps in their beds...and ultimately learns the importance of respecting others' privacy and property.


Jack and The Beanstalk

This English fairy tale tells the story of a poor country boy who trades the family cow for magic beans, which grow into a beanstalk that leads to the castle of an unfriendly giant. You can read it aloud yourself or play the audio version for the kids.


The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse

In this quick read—one of Aesop's Fables—the Town Mouse visits his cousin in the country and turns his nose up at the Country Mouse's lifestyle. The story's theme of choosing a peaceful and simple life over a luxurious one is a message even little kids can grasp.


The Very Hungry Spider by E.B. Adams

This is a fun, silly story about a spider who thinks flies taste yucky. Author E.B. Adams has other fun books on his site, some of which are free to download.


Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne

The children's classic about a lovable, yellow, honey-loving bear and his pals, who live in the forest surrounding the Hundred Acre Wood, is available to read for free online.


The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams

A toy rabbit wishes to become a real bunny in this tearjerker. While you won't see many of the fabulous illustrations in this online version, you can read the story for free.


The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by Frank L. Baum

This classic tale is about a girl named Dorothy and her dog Toto, who get swept away in a tornado from their Kansas farm to the magical land of Oz. The famous ruby slippers are silver in the book, but the story still holds just as much whimsy and magic as the 1939 film.

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On the Night You Were Born is one of the most classic bedtime stories for kids. Image courtesy of McMillan Publishing

Best Bedtime Stories for Babies, Toddlers, and Preschoolers


On the Night You Were Born by Nancy Tillman

This beautiful story about the overwhelming joy of a child's birth may bring a tear to parents' eyes. It's a thoughtful and emotional book with illustrations little ones love.


Pete the Cat series by Eric Litman, James Dean ,and Kimberly Dean

Toddlers love these picture books about Pete the Cat and his adventures—especially the ones that come with a CD song. Parents will find themselves humming the catchy tunes long after the littles have fallen asleep.


Snuggle Puppy! by Sandra Boynton

Another sing-song book about a mother's love for her child, Snuggle Puppy! is such a joy to read. You can come up with your own tune or use the official one from the album the book is based on.


Good Night, Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann

Good Night, Gorilla does not have many words, but the book is all about the illustrations. Toddlers love to point out what's happening in each picture behind the zookeeper's back.


Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

One of the most classic bedtime stories for kids, Goodnight Moon features a rabbit saying good night to the items in its bedroom. It's such a staple, in fact, that it's been parodied many times.


Are You My Mother? by P.D. Eastman

This is a sweet, simple story about a little bird who falls out of the nest and meets various animals until it finds its mother. There is also a shorter board book version.

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There's so much to love about Love You Forever. Illustration by Sheila McGraw from the book


Love You Forever by Robert Munsch

Have the tissues ready for the first few reads of this story about loving your child no matter how big or old they get.


Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker

This gorgeous picture book, in which hardworking trucks get ready to go to bed, is one of the best bedtime stories for kids who love trucks. It is so popular that it spawned several follow-up books. 


Time for Bed by Mem Fox

Say good night to various animals—and to your little one—with this sweet, rhyming, and beautifully illustrated bedtime book.

Best Bedtime Stories for Kids and Tweens


Coraline by Neil Gaiman

According to a study by My 1st Years, Coraline is the number-one children's book in the US. It tells the story of an adventurous 11-year-old who finds an idealized parallel universe—which also contains sinister secrets—behind a secret door in her new home. Some parts can be a bit scary, so the book is best for bigger kids.

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Is it time to enter the world of Harry Potter? Photo courtesy of Scholastic, Inc.


Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling

This wildly popular fantasy series about a magical world of witchcraft and wizardry includes seven books that range from 309 to 870 pages. Start with Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and settle In for many nights of fantastical reading.


Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer

Children who love fantasy and science fiction will be enthralled by the villain-turned-good-guy Artemis Fowl. There are eight books in the original series.


Matilda by Roald Dahl

Matilda is a childhood staple about a brilliant young girl who uses her smarts to help free her fellow students (and herself) from their school's cruel headmistress.


Charlotte's Web by E.B. White

This classic tale is a touching story of friendship between "Some Pig" Wilbur and a barn spider named Charlotte.


Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

Horse and animal lovers will love this classic, which is considered one of the best-selling books of all time.


A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett

A Little Princess is a favorite among educators. It tells the story of a young girl who is always generous and caring despite her changing circumstances.

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Alice's tea party is a classic scene from Alice in Wonderland. Illustration by John Tenniel from the original edition

Best Bedtime Stories for the Whole Family


Alice in Wonderland by C.S. Lewis

Many children are first introduced to Alice through the Disney films and animated series, but the books are just as captivating. In the original book, a girl named Alice falls through a rabbit hole into a fantasy world full of peculiar creatures.


James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl

In this fantasy book, an orphan named James is left in the care of his evil aunts. Through magic, he finds himself on an adventure in a giant peach with a makeshift family of bugs.


Shrek! by William Steig

The hit DreamWorks film about a lovable green ogre was based on William Steig's book of the same name. While there are some notable differences from the film, the book still has all of its great humor and adventure.


The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Originally written in French, this beloved tale transcends culture and language. It tells the story of a young prince who visits various planets, including Earth, and experiences loneliness, friendship, love, and loss. The restored illustrations are truly beautiful.


Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie

Like Alice in Wonderland, there are definitely differences between Disney's version of Peter Pan and the original story. The original tale of a mischievous boy who can fly and never grows up is fun, adventurous, and worthy of reading without comparison to the film.

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Where the Wild Things Are illustrates the power of the imagination. Photo courtesy of the Maurice Sendak Foundation


Where the WIld Things Are by Maurice Sendak

In Where the Wild Things Are, a boy named Max lands on an island where he meets strange and mysterious creatures. Maurice Sendak's illustrations are a big part of what makes this book truly enchanting. It's been a staple in many families' libraries for generations.


The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss

With such a vast library, it's hard to pick just one Dr. Seuss book. The Cat in the Hat's silly rhymes and mischievous titular character make it fun for the whole family to read.

Lead image courtesy of Bigstock

Top 10 Bedtime Stories For Kids To Read

Reading Bedtime Stories For Kids is an important element in the child’s success. As Philip Pullman rightly put, “After nourishment, shelter, and companionship, stories are the thing we need most in the world.” Telling stories not only develops reading skills, quality writing, construction of sentences, but also helps in increasing their imagination and creativity, and communication skills.

This is the time when you and your child can spend some quality time out of your busy schedule. It also helps in creating a unique bond between the two of you. has put together some of the most amazing Bedtime Stories For Kids that your kids will surely like. Happy Reading!

1. Goldilocks And The Three Bears

This is a story about a girl who went to the forest and accidentally forgot her way back home. She suddenly saw a cottage and gently knocked on the door. But nobody was inside. As she entered, she saw three bowls of porridge, big, medium, and small. The cottage belonged to the bears. After such a tiring journey, she was very hungry and ate the smallest bowl of porridge.

Then, she saw three chairs, big, medium, and small. Goldilocks perfectly fit on the smaller one but the chair broke at once.  She then went upstairs and saw three beds, big, medium, and small. She chose the small one and fell asleep. In a couple of hours, the bears came back. They saw their porridge was all scattered and the baby bear’s bowl was empty. Then, they saw the broken chair of the baby bear. They got very angry. As they went upstairs, they saw a girl in deep slumber.

Suddenly, she woke up and saw three bears, the frightened girl got up from the bed and ran as fast as she could. She ran until she reached back home safe and sound. Read the full story here.

Goldilocks and three bears

2. The Ugly Duckling

This is the story of the ugly duckling who was ignored by everyone. Once, there lived a duck in a pond who had laid some eggs. Soon, the eggs cracked and three beautiful ducklings came into the world. The last egg was big. When it cracked, she saw an ugly, grey duckling. He was hated by everyone. His brothers and sisters used to hate him. He became so sad that he ran away from his home. On his way, he met an old woman. She cuddled him but as she saw him closely, she screamed and told him to go away. Once again, he became sad. He sobbed day and night all alone. He was sad but he never loses hope.

Then, one day, he saw a pond. He became very happy and swam to his satisfaction. Since the weather had changed and it was cold, the poor duckling was frozen in the pond. A kind farmer took him to his home and took good care of her. Soon, the duckling regained his strength and the farmer left him in the pond. There, he saw many beautiful swans. He bowed his head in shame. Suddenly, he saw his own reflection. He had grown into a beautiful swan. Those beautiful swans were his brothers and sisters. Now, he was the most beautiful swan and all the swans praised him for his immense beauty. Read the full story here.

bedtime stories for kids

3. The Pied Piper Of Hamelin

This is a story about a town, Hamelin which used to have many rats. All the townspeople were worried and wanted to get rid of the problem. Even the cats couldn’t do anything. Soon, a meeting was called out and it was decided that whosoever catches the mice would get ten sacks of gold coins as a reward. One day, a stranger passed by and promised them to do so. He took out his pipe and started to play a wonderful tune. All the mice, at once came out of their holes and the stranger took them near the river. One by one, they fell into the river and drowned. When he returned for his reward, the townspeople disagree with what they promised. The poor stranger decided to teach them a lesson.

Immediately, he started to play his pipe. But this time, all the kids followed him. No kid was left in the town. When the townspeople came to know, they promised him to give twenty sacks of gold. The stranger let the children go. The town of Hamelin had learned never to be ungrateful and greedy. Read the full story here.

bedtime stories to read Image Source

4. The Snow Queen

This is the story of the Snow Queen who made a strange mirror. All the good things became ugly and terrible. One day, as she was taking it to heaven, it fell on the Earth. It was broken into many pieces. The pieces went into many people’s eyes and hearts. In a village, there lived two best friends, Kai and Gerda. Unfortunately, it went into Kai’s eyes and heart. He was now very rude to Gerda. This made Gerda so sad that she always remained upset.

One day, Gerda saw that Kai was going with a lady who had a white face and icy hair. With lots of hurdles on her way, she finally reached the Snow Queen’s castle. There, she saw Kai frozen. He was frozen and he turned blue. Gerda told all the happy moments they spent together but nothing changed.  Kai was still frozen. When she could do nothing, she began to cry. Suddenly, her tears fell on his chest and penetrated his heart. Kai hugged Gerda. When they hugged, a bright light appeared which made the ice melt. This made the Snow Queen cry and she faded away into the air.

After overcoming the challenges, the two friends returned home and lived happily ever after. This story signifies a good friendship that was overpowered by the devil’s magic and melted the eternal ice. Read the full story here.

children’s bedtime stories Image Source

5. The Little Match Girl

This is the story of a poor little girl who lived with her father. Her father used to send her to the streets to sell the matchsticks. It was Christmas Eve and it was terribly cold out there. The Match Girl was noticed by no one and so she couldn’t sell the matches that day. She was afraid that if she would go home, her father would beat her. She used to miss her mother and grandmother who were now in Heaven.

It was so cold that she thought of burning a match to give her some warmth. Finally, she dared to lit a match and made herself warm. Soon, the match turned into a fireplace and she made herself warm. But it didn’t last for long. Without thinking, she lit the second match. This time, the wall turned into a veil and she could see a dining room with lots of delicious foods. But in a couple of seconds, it vanished. When she lit the third match, a beautiful Christmas Tree appeared. It had many beautiful candles. She wanted to hold the candles. But as she reached, the candles flew to the sky and turned into stars. Next, when she lit the match, she saw her grandmother whom she loved the most. One by one, she struck the whole bundle of matches as she didn’t want her grandmother to go away.

The next day, it was Christmas. The match girl was sitting at the corner with red cheeks and a smiling face. The people there thought she was trying to keep herself warm last night. But no one knew the magic moments she spent last night. Read the full story here.

bedtime stories for girls Image Source

6. King Midas And His Golden Touch

This is the story about a King named Midas who had a large Kingdom but he was unhappy. He wanted to have more and more gold as he was very greedy. One day, he asked a holy man to grant his wish that whatever he touched must turn into gold. The holy man agreed. The King was very happy. Whatever he touched was turned into gold. His throne, chairs, table, and even his food. Now, he could not eat or drink anything.

One day, his daughter came to him and when he put his arms around her, her daughter, too, turned into gold. King Midas was shocked. He wanted her daughter back. He cried out for help. Suddenly, the holy man appeared and gave him a bottle of water and told him to sprinkle the water on all the things that have turned into gold. When he sprinkled the water, immediately everything came in its original form. King Midas learned that “Gold can’t buy you happiness!” Read the full story here.

King Midas and the golden touch Image Source

7.  Jack And The Beanstalk

This is a story of a poor boy named Jack who decided to sell his cow for some money. On his way, he met a traveler who wanted to buy his cows for some magic beans. Jack was curious and he agreed. When he went home empty-handed, his mother shouted at him. However, he sowed the magic beans. When he woke up, he saw the world’s biggest beanstalk. Jack was excited and wanted to see what was there on top of it. He began to climb it and reached a strange land with a large castle.

While entering, he saw a huge giant sleeping in the castle. Slowly, he started to explore the castle and found lots of treasure inside it. He decided to take some treasure along with him so that his mother and he would no longer be poor. Just when he was about to leave, the giant woke up and chased the poor Jack. Jack was too fast for him and quickly slipped down from the beanstalk. He then cut the beanstalk and the giant fell down and died. Jack and his mother lived happily ever after. Read the full story here.

bedtime stories for boys Image Source

8. The Selfish Giant

This is a story about a giant who never let the children in his garden. The giant was not in his garden for seven years. Every day, children would go and play in his garden. One day, he came back. Seeing so many children on his premises, he got angry and started building walls. On the wall, he put a note saying, “No Children!” This made the children upset. Soon, it was time for spring. All around, the flowers bloomed and there was greenery. But, in the garden of giant, there was no spring. It was still winter there. The giant waited and waited but there were no signs of springs.

Then, one day, while he was sleeping, he heard the sound of a bird. As he peeped through the window, he saw that the spring had finally arrived. Also, he saw a big hole that the children had made. Upon seeing him, all the children ran away. Only one was left inside the garden. He was trying to climb the tree. The giant helped him climb the tree. At that moment, the giant took out the hammer and banged the wall. Since that day, the children and the giant used to play together.

But, every day, the giant would ask about that little boy whom he helped that day. Unfortunately, nobody knew about him. Several years passed, and the giant grew old. One day, as he was sitting near the same tree, he saw spring on one part of his garden when it was winter. There was the same child whom he helped that day. The child came to take the giant with him to heaven. That day when the children came to play, they saw the giant lying in the flower bed with a big smile. Read the full story here.

bedtime stories for kids Image Source

9. Puss In Boots

This is the story of three brothers who decided to throw out their youngest brother. The youngest brother took the cat along with him. They had nothing. The cat asked for his master’s boot and in return, caught a rabbit for his master. They took the rabbit and gifted it to King. Later, the King and his daughter went to the picnic. There, the cat told his master to jump into the stream. Then he asked the King for new clothes for his master. The cat then took them all to the Marquis castle. The cat went into the golden wheat fields which belonged to Scary Ogre.

Now, the cat told the farmer if he would say the fields belonged to Marquis of Carabas, he would help him get rid of Scary Ogre. The farmer did as the cat said. Later, in the castle of Scary Ogre, the cat was caught. To make the cat scared, Scary Ogre turned into a huge lion. The cat challenged him to turn into a little creature. He accepted the dare and turned into a mouse. Within seconds, the cat ate him and made his master the King of that Kingdom. Later, the Marquis and the princess get married. The cat becomes the Knight of Carabas. And they all lived happily ever after. Read the full story here.

classic bedtime stories for kids Image Source

10. The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz Summary

This is a story of a girl named Dorothy who lived with her Uncle, Aunt, and a pet dog named Toto in Kansas city. One day, a scary cyclone lifted their house up and blew it away. After some time, it fell with a thud! Unfortunately, her house fell on a bad witch of East. The people of munchkins rejoiced in happiness. Suddenly, a good witch appeared and asked her for a wish.  Dorothy wanted to go back. The good witch gave her red slippers to wear and told her to follow the yellow brick road and meet the Wizard of Oz.

On her way, she met a scarecrow who wanted a brain, a tin woodcutter who wanted a heart, and a lion who wanted courage. She took three of them to the Wizard of Oz to ask for the way back home for Dorothy, brain for the scarecrow, a heart for the tin woodcutter, and courage for the lion. Finally, they reached Emerald City where they met a wizard. When Dorothy told him everything, the wizard told them that he would grant their wish if they would free them from the evil witch of West, too. All of them agreed.

The witch came to know about this and attacked them. Firstly, she sent a pack of scariest wolves but the woodcutter hacked them all till they ran away. Next, many crows came to peck on them but in a couple of seconds, the scarecrow scared them all. Next, the witch sent the flying monkeys who took them to the witch’s castle. Dorothy observed her carefully and threw a bucket full of water at the witch. Immediately, she started melting. After that, all of her slaves became free. Dorothy and her friends went back to Emerald City. The wizard appreciated them and granted them their wish. It was time to say goodbye. Dorothy picked up Toto and clicked her together thrice and told her slippers to take her home. Read the full story here.

classic bedtime stories for kids Image Source

If you loved this collection of Bedtime Stories For Kids, don’t forget to share it with your friends. Thanks for reading!

Best fairy tales - 100 most beloved fairy tales

9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 0004 Flower-seven-color 4.66
1 porridge from the ax Domet 4.65
2 Kolobok 4. 78
4 The frog princess0004 Russian folk 4.87
6 In Lukomorye oak green Alexander Pushkin 4.81
7,0004 7,0005 Husy-School 4.61 Samuil Marshak 4.69
9 Three bears Russian Folk 4.60
Valentin Kataev 4.68
11 Princess on a pea Hans Christian Andersen 4.505
9000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 9000 4000 ,0004,0004,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4,000 4000 Like an ant hurried home Vitaliy Bianki 4. 61
14 Sivka-Burka Russian folk
15 Wizard of the Emerald City Alexander Volkov 4.40
16 9000 Large 4.57
18 Domovyen Kuzya Tatyana Aleksandrova 4.45
Fisherman and Fish Alexander Pushkin 4.72
Ivan Tsarevich and the Gray Wolf Russian folk 4.59
21 Ilomo-Muromets and Nightingale-Robber 9000 4.55 9000 4.55 9000 4.55
22 Bremen musicians Brothers Grimm 4.67
23 005 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 All 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9003
24 Flying ship Russian folk 4.59
Sleeping beauty Charles Perro 4.42 9000 9000
Alan Miln 4. 47
27 Horse-Bill Petr Ershov 4.12
28 Alice in Wonderland Lewis Carroll 4.28
29 Wolf and seven goats Brothers Grimm 4.65
Buratino The ugly duckling Hans Christian Andersen 4.29
32 The tale of the priest and his worker Balda Alexander Pushkin 4.19
38 Vasilisa Beautiful Russian folk 4.68
9000 The Three Little Pigs0005 Dzhanny Rodari 4.26
43 Little MUK Wilhelm Gauf 4.43
44 9000 Wilhelm Gauf 4.27
46 Live water Brothers Grimm 4. 53
47 Tale of lost time Evgeny Schwartz 4.61
48 Silver hoof Pavel Bazhov 4.40
49 Red cap Magical 4.62
51 Crocodile Gena and his friends Eduard Uspensky 4.52
05 9000 9000 64 4 0012 9000 9000
In fear of the eye is great Russian folk 4.73
53 On toad and rose Vsevolod Garshin
55 By pike command Russian folk 4.52
56 Sister Alyonushka and brother Ivanushka Russian folk 4.67
57 Town in Tabakerka Vladimir Odoevsky 4.14
58 Fox and Crane About Cranes 4.53 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 SHEL Sibiryak 4. 26
60 Frog Puttennik Vsevolod Garshin 4.47
61 BULK Lev Tolstoy 4.53
62 Ivan - Peasant Son and Miracle -Yudo Russian folk 4.62
63 Little men Brothers Grimm 4.78
65 Pipe and jug Valentin Kataev
66 Fine fingertips Yasny Sokol Magic 4.49
67 about dinosaur and mouse about dinosaurs
9000 9000 Nerds Russian folk people
69 Foster Mamin-Sibiryak 4.05
70 Vladimir 9 Suteev 9 Suteev 9 Who said 0 5 900 meow 05 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 4.00 9004 9003
Wild swans Hans Christian Andersen 4.13
76 Tereshechka Russian folk 4. 57
77 .82222 Nikita Kozhemyaka Russian folk 4.52
79 About the brave Hare - long ears, slanting eyes, short tail Mamin-Siberian 4.59
80 Cosa-dermez Russian folk 4.83
81 Fairy Tale 4.37 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 nose and hairy Misha-short tail Alyonushka's fairy tales 4.32
83 The kingdom of crooked mirrors Vitaly Gubarev 4.21
84 Winter of animals Russian folk 4.5000
85 Ashik-Kerib Mikhail Lermontov
87 RICKI TIKKI TAVI Redjard Kipling 4. 33
88 Hans Christian Andersen 4.15
89 Mistress of the copper mountain Pavel Bazhov 4.13
Tale of young apples and live water 4.14 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 rolling pin Prolisu 4.70
92 Evseika case Maxim Gorky 4.13
04 Porridge Porridge 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 4.
Brothers Grimm 4.82
94 Sadko Russian folk
9000 Russian folk 4.63
97 Marya Morevna Russian folk 4.41
98 Cat and fox Russian folk 4.81
NAME BYCHERS Nikolay Scholkov 4.49

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