History of Fortunatus (4)

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History of Fortunatus  (1815-1825) 

Date is estimated.









His two Sons.

Printed for the Booksellers in Town and Country






Of Fortunatus' Birth, Parentage, &c.

In the isle of Cyprus there is a stately city called Famagosta, where once lived one Theodorus, descended of noble parents, who left him with a great estate; but being brought up to nothing but pleasures, he soon wasted the greatest part of his riches, to the great grief of all his relations, who, thinking to make him leave off these courses determined to match him to a rich merchant’s daughter in the city of Nicovia named Gratiana, a discreet woman, whose prudence and good humour might be a means of bringing him to live soberly and frugally; and proposing it to him with many persuasive reasons and arguments how much it would he for his good, he resolved to visit her; and, after a few months courtship; they were married in a splendid manner, most of the principal gentlemen of either city being at the wedding, and so they lived together in content and great felicity for the space of one year, in which time they had a son, whom they named Fortunatus; at whose christening an old woman, taken to be a prophetess, came in and uttered these words :-—

This child is fortune's darling, he shall share, (illegible text)sought, those riches whom she will prepare; to travel he his thoughts full soon will bend, though cross'd in some, yet all shall happy end.

This was noted of many, but more particularly when the success answered her prediction. As he grew up, his father, not to be restrained by the fears and entreaties of his wife, began to follow to former bad courses, insomuch that he squandered away all his patrimony, so that they fell into extreme poverty. Fortunatus being then 18 years of age, and seeing no ways to have their wants relieved, begged leave of his parents to quit them of the charge he put them to, by suffering, him to reveal, not doubting but he could shift for himself. His father easily consented, but his mother not without great reluctance; so with many tender embraces they parted. Fortunatus having the world to ramble in, made to the sea: and at the next haven found a great many armed men, landed under the command of Balwin, earl of Flanders, who had put on shore to refresh him. He took courage, and kneeling before the earl, offered him his service, and promised to be very subservient to his commands. The earl perceiving him a very promising youth, and after inquiry into the circumstances of his parentage and former life, he made him his chief servant: in which station he behaved himself so well, that he gained this great lord's entire affection, and sailed with him in galley to the famous city of Venice.

Fortunatus, knowing the language of this country, he had orders from his lord to buy several costly jewels, garments of velvet, and other merchandize, which wonderfully pleased him at his return home, he was soon after married to the duke of Cleve's daughter, to whom he was contracted before his going to the war, a (illegible text) and beautiful lady, At this wedding was many valiant lords and knights, mounted on sta(illegible text) horses to tilt and tourney before the noble ladies there present. After they had finished their triumphs and mortal games, the duke of Cleaves, and the bride and bridegroom, agreed to let the servants try their manhood at several pastimes, for two jewels, valued at 300 crowns, which made them strive one against another to do their best; so the duke Of Burgundy's servant won one, and Fortunatus the other. Upon this they desired the duke's servant to challenge Fortunatus to fight him before all the ladies, who should have them b(illegible text) which challenge was soon accepted, and they encountered each other very briskly, till at last Fortunatus hoisted the duke's servant off his horse by his spear's length. Whereupon he won the victory, and obtained the jewels, which increased the envy of the other servants, but greatly rejoiced the earl.

Among the earl's servants there was a crafty fellow called Robert, who consulted with the (illegible text) how to remove this favourite, winch they effected by this stratagem: Robert, who pretended gude friendship to Fortunatus, went to him one day (illegible text) he was reading, and told him that their Lord, having conceived a great jealousy of his chamberlains, (of which Fortunatus was one) had ordered, the surgeon to come next morning to have them gelded. Which, when Fortunatus heard, he was much surprized, and therefore desired this old fellow, Robert, to tell him how he might convey himself with speed out of the city undiscovered. Robert observing this, told him he was loath to part with so good a companion, but if he would go, he could not get out of the city till the morning, as the gates were shut.—Fortunatus desired him by all means to conceal his departure, and then in great trouble of mind he departed, taking his journey on horseback.

Of the Travels of Fortunatus.

Fortunatus getting away in the manner aforesaid, travelled with ail speed to Calais, where he took shipping for England, and coming to London, he fell in company with two Cyprus merchants, with whom he riotously spent all his money, and being in a poor condition, void of succour, he conveyed himself again over the sea to France, where he arrived in Picardy, and resolved to go for Paris. When passing through a wood, and being at a loss which way to go, as he gazed about, he saw a beautiful lady crossing a way to whom he made up, saying, I beseech thee, sweet virgin, for the love of God, to assist me, so I may come out, of this wood, for these three days have I travelled without meat. Then she demanded of him, what Countryman he was? he answered, I am of the isle of Cyprus, and poverty hath constrained me to wander to seek my fortune. She said, fear not, Fortunatus, I am the goddess Fortune; and by the influence of the great Disposer of all things, are given me six things to such as stand in need thereof, which are wisdom, riches, strength, health, beauty, and long life; therefore choose one quickly, and be prudent, for you may not choose again. Fortunatus made no longer stay, but said, then I desire riches. With that she gave him a purse, and said, receive the same of me, and what country thou art in, as often as thou shall put thy hand therein, thou shall draw forth ten pieces of gold of the same nation's coin: and this purse shall retain its virtue as long as thou livest, and thy own children during their lives.

Fortunatus returned her a thousand thanks, to which she replied, return thanks to the Giver of all good gifts; for I am but the hand to distribute them as he directs, and of thy riches bestow it on the poor and needy. Then, setting him out of the wood, she vanished from his sight; which made him greatly wonder, and scarcely believe but it was a vision, and nothing of reality in it, till coming to an inn, hr tried the experiment, and found it otherwise: but his garments were so poor that the host, till he saw his money, scrupled to let him have any victuals or drink; but seeing him draw out gold so fast, the began to be sweet upon him, made him a fire, and carried him into the best room, ordering his daughter to attend him, where he staid all night. In the morning he inquired of the host, if he could help him to some horses, who told him, there was a merchant very lately arrived with the very stately ones out of Barbary, for which the duke Rodolphus, who lived hard by, in a stately castle, had offered 300 crowns, but it was refused. (illegible text)n this he desired the host to send for the merchant, to bring his horses with him: which he accordingly did, though within himself he laughed heartily, seeing him so meanly clad, and knowing (illegible text) were of great price; yet, contrary to his explanation, he bought the two the earl had bid for, he gave 400 crowns for them; then the host supposed him to he some nobleman in disguise, specially as he bought costly saddles and other furniture, and inquired for two servants. The duke hearing that Fortunatus had bought the horses out of his hand, was very angry, and sent the innkeeper to know who he was. The host (illegible text) the messenger he was a stranger in plain having newly come, which he at first did not think capable of purchasing an ass. whereupon the earl (illegible text) to apprehend him, suspecting him to have committed some robbery, and notwithstanding all the excuses he could make sent him to prison, and was compelled to deliver the horses up to him, (illegible text) 300 crowns, as a fine set upon him, and observed to depart his territories, with an oath never to discover what passed between them.

How Fortunatus travelled to the Isle of Cyprus, his Marriage, &c.

Fortunatus rejoiced that he was so well escaped and was not bereft of his precious purse; he (illegible text) thought of travelling to his own country. In his country he passed through many strange cities wherein he viewed the greatest curiosities. Having now purchased several horses and rich apparel, with several servants to attend him, he at last came to Venice, and thence sailed to the isle of Cyprus. Upon his arrival at Famagosta, he found his father and mother dead, through sorrow for their (illegible text) poverty, which much grieved him: yet that they might not be wanting in what lay in his power, he built a stately monument over their grave, with a suitable epitaph.

Fortunatus thinking now to settle in his own country, built him a noble house at Famagosta, so curiously adorned, that the like was not in his island. He made splendid entertainments for the king and queen, who highly favoured him, he wondered whence he could be master of so great a treasure; but he kept that a secret. At last the king advised him to marry, in order to keep his family that was so ancient, and promised to (illegible text) his choices of the three daughters of Lord Nin(illegible text) upon which, having seen and discoursed with them, he made choice of the youngest, whose name was Cassandra. The countess and earl liked well the match, only they objected against him as he had no lands; which Fortunatus understanding, he purchased a lordship to settle on her jointure. The wedding was kept 14 days with great splendour, the king, queen, nobles, and all of any note in the land, being entertained. And the first year of his happy marriage, his beautiful Cassandra brought him a son, whom he named Ampedo; and the next year another, whom he named Andolocia.

How Fortunatus was sent to travel again; which he did, in Egypt, Persia, India, &c.

Fortunatus having lived 12 years with his loving wife, now began to think of travelling into other countries where he had not been; which his dear Cassandra much opposed. But being fully resolved to travel, appeased her, promising, that he would return in a year; and so leaving her, besides his estate ten thousand crowns, in ready money, in a ship he had hired for his own use, he departed, resolving to turn merchant as well as traveller.

The first port he touched at was Alexandria in Egypt, where, as the custom was, he immediately went to make a present to the Soldan, which he did in such rich jewels, that that mighty prince admired it, and therefore entertained him very (illegible text)ly, sending him in requital very rich merchandise, and left him at liberty to traffic in the good (illegible text)ugs of Egypt, above the liberty granted to other merchants; so that, having richly freighted his ship, he sent it by the master to Cyprus, consigned to the use of his wife and children, resolved with ten servants to travel overland; and so taking his leave of the Soldan, who gave him letters of s(illegible text) conduct directed to divers princes, he determined to pass over the deserts of Arabia and Persia and so to India taking Tartary in his way, where he had a view of the great Cham’s court at Cat(illegible text). From whence he travelled through a vast land forest that leads to India, where he slew a monstrous tiger, that had destroyed many hundreds of people, and left the way almost unfrequented to passengers, which was scattered with the sculls and bones of those that had been devoured. This forest took up two days and two nights travel, and passing through many countries; he came to India where the emperor Preston John reigned, who (illegible text) all those those countries, was the only Christian prince; that country being converted to the Christian faith by St Thomas the apostle. He has under him 62 Kings, and is lord of 30 islands, besides a vast country on the continent. Although most strangers are forbid to enter the emperor's palace, without his leave, Fortunatus making large presents, spun gained admittance and beheld such riches as the like he had never seen for the walls were plated with fine silver, whereupon was engraved the stories of knights, and ballads of former emperors: some rooms were hung with panthers, skins, casting a fragrant smell; the pillars that supported the roof were cedar, overlaid in gold, and embossed with precious stones. Fortunatus, having seen all he could obtained leave from the Emperor to depart with 30 camels laden with the richest goods of the country, and having appointed his ship-master to meet him at Alexandria, he set out from thence.

The Soldian having notice of his arrival in Egypt, sent divers of his officers to meet and welcome him in his name; whom Fortunatus presented with jewels, odours, and spices, and the Soldian with many rarities; so unlading his camels, he shipped all his goods, and remembring his promise to his beloved Cassandra, he ordered them to weigh anchor, resolving to sail; but the Soldian desired him to partake of a banquet before he went, after which he shewed him his curiosities in his jewel-house, which were such as scarcely could be found in the world. But while Fortunatus was admiring their richness, the Soldian unlocked a cabinet of gold, and pulled out of it an old hat to all appearance, saying, this is a jewel I esteem above all the others, for, continued he, it has that secret virtue in it, given by a great magician, long since dead, that, put it upon your head, and wish to be where you will, you shall be immediately carried thither invisibly. Fortunatus from that moment thought with himself, if he had this to join with his purse, they would be the two greatest advantages in the world; and said to the Soldian, since this hat hath such virtue, sure it must be very heavy on his head that weareth it. Then said the Soldian, it is no heavier than another hat, whereupon he gave it into his hands, and bid him put it on his head: asking him if he felt otherwise. Then said Fortunatus, I did not think it had been so light, nor supposed you would have set it on my head! with that he wished himself in his ship: and immediately he flew out at the window, as swift as lightning, and, to the amazement of the sailors lighted on the deck, without any harm; they then set all the sail they could, and, notwithstanding they were pursued, safely reached the isle of Cyprus with his ship richly laden, to the great joy of Cassandra and his two sons.

Fortunatus, having lived long in pleasure and plenty, his two sons being grown to men's maturity, he fell sick, and calling them to him, bestowed his riches on them, revealed to them the virtue of his purse, and how it would last only for their lives; he also told them the virtue of his wishing hat So desiring them to live lovingly together, and not to part with these jewels, or ever discover the virtues of. them, but to use them by turns; and in a most devout manner, recommending his soul into the hands of his Maker, he gave up the ghost. Soon after Cassandra, through exceeding grief, falling sick of a fever, died, and both were buried in a stately tomb he had caused to be built in his life time, in the chancel of the new church he had erected, having left bountifully to the poor and for other charitable uses.

How Andolocia, the youngest Son got the purse from Ambedo, his Brother, &c.

Fortunatus and his dear consort were no sooner laid in their tomb, but Andolocia, the youngest son, agreed with his elder brother, to fill four large coffers with gold out of the purse; that he should have the wishing-hat and a!l the visible estate, and he only the purse to bear him company in his travels; so setting forward he came to the court of Paris, in France, where he appeared so splendid in his equipage, and extravagant in his expenses, that he was wondered at by all, who took him for some strange prince, and rather by reason of his courage: for in the lists that were made for entertainment, he unhorsed divers of the nobility. He soon after left the city, and travelled for Spain, viewing all the rarities of that country, and at length arrived at Madrid; there he found them preparing for a war with Portugal, and he resolved to take this opportunity, raised an hundred men, and proferred the king his service. The wars ending, he sailed for England, where, in like manner, he assisted the king in his wars with the Scots. And one day as the king was entertaining him at dinner, he was so smitten in love with the fair princess Agrippina, the king's daughter, that he forgot to eat, and feasted, his eyes only on her, insomuch that great notice was taken of it. He likewise entertained the queen and princess at a splendid dinner, and afterwards the king, giving liberally to the guards and servants, so that they marvelled how he, having no visible estate, could live at such a rate, and were greatly desirous to know what secret mine he had to carry on his grandeur to such a height.

This, by the advice of the king and queen, the princess undertook to discover, as she perceived he was deeply in love with her: and in a little time shewed him such kindness, that he was admitted to be private with her in her chamber, a favour which none before had received: and there being none but they, he thought it was now time to declare his passion; which he did in such obliging terms, that she seemed to be pleased with it, only saying, your lavishing expenses, I fear, will bring us both to poverty, should I marry with you. He told her that could not be, for his treasure during his life was inexhaustible, and could not be spent spend what he would. Let me know, said the princess, from whence you have these great riches? Ah, said he, it was my dying father's command not to discover it to any; yet so dearly do I love you that I can deny you nothing. To this she obliged herself, and he, drunk with love, thereupon showed her his purse, told he how it was come by, and all the secrets of it, letting her see it experimentally, by pulling out several handfuls of gold, which he presented her with, telling her he could do so all day long, and every day as long as he lived. This made her inwardly rejoice, and from that time plotted how to get it, which she affected, under the colour of a promise he should lie with her before marriage, if he would swear to be true to her when she had rendered up to him her virgin treasure. But, whilst he expected, with a multitude of joy; the fruition of her delicate body, she contrived with her woman to give him drugs in his wine and so drinking them lustily, he fell fast asleep. Then turning aside his coat, she took his purse, and fastened another of the same likeness to his girdle, but different in virtue: so that waking in the morning, and finding him in a chair, he began to wonder what had befallen him. But just as he remembered the assignation with Agrippina, in came her woman, who told him in a sorrowful tone that the fair princess going to bed, and keeping awake in expectation of him, and he deceiving her, she was risen very angry. This made him very blank and sorrowful that he had lost an opportunity which he could not reasonably expect again! And so rising he went to his own house, little dreaming he had lost his treasure.

By this time Agrippina had shewn the purse to the king and queen; and told them, the virtue of it. And now they resolved to put a trick upon Andolocia, and accordingly the king sent to tell him, he designed to come, with the queen and princess, to dine with him that day. The messenger had no sooner delivered his message, and was departed, but he called his steward and bid him immediately provide provision: but he told him, in the two last feasts that his money was all expended, and, therefore, he must have more. Whereupon Andolocia put his hand readily into his purse but found nothing: when looking wishfully on it, he perceived it was changed. This made him look blank, not knowing for a time what to saw or do. He knew the virtue of it was so rare, that those who had it would never part with it by fair means. And so pretending his brother was dead, he turned of all his servants, sold all his household furniture, and privately getting on ship-board, he sailed for Cyprus, telling his brother Ambedo the lamentable news of the loss of the purse; which greatly grieved him, and made him blame Andolocia for his folly, and the breach of his father’s last commmands. Yet be relieved his wants plentifully but he as badly rewarded him, for having got what treasure he could, he desired him to lend him his wishing hat, but he a long time refused it, saying, that should, be his last reserve when all his money was spent, and he doubted not, but when some great prince should come to know the virtue of it, to get ten thousand pounds for it, and if he let him have it, he would lose it foolishly as he had done the purse. To this he said nothing, but one day desiring to see it, when having it in his hand, he clapped it on his head, wishing himself at Venice, and he was immediately there; leaving his brother to repent his folly in the loss of his hat, as he had done his, in the loss of his purse. Being in this great city, he found out several Jews who were rich jewellers, and cheapening divers of great value, grasping them fast in his hand and wishing himself in England, he was immediately carried through the air, to their great admiration, who concluded him to be no less than the devil.

How Andolocia carried away Agrippina with the Purse to Ireland, &c.

Being in England, he disguised himself in the habit of an Italian merchant, and going to court, inquired for the princess Agrippina, and being brought before her, he laid out his jewels, profered her them for sale, and in a little time they agreed. Now that which he looked for was the purse, out of which he supposed she would take the money, for he suspected she had it, and accordingly it succeeded; for going to a coffer and taking it out, she fastened it to her girdle: when he having his wishing hat on, clasped her in his arms, and wishing himself in a wild desert, away they flew together over sea and land till they came to a vast wilderness in Ireland; there he set her down faint and breathless, under a tree, on which grew very curious apples to look to. Agrippina, pasting her eyes upon them, intreated him to pull some of them to quench her thirst, for she was almost ready to perish with drought. Yet he still loving her, though she had played him such a slippery trick, clapped unadvisedly his cap on her head to keep off the scorching sun, as knowing she knew not the virtue of it, so climbing up fell to gathering. In the mean while she sat pensive and sad and wishing to God she was out of that desolate place, and in her father’s palace, all on a sudden, contrary to her expectations, she was carried away, leaving Andolocia to fret at his folly, and vex himself more than ever: so that, wandering up and down, faint and weary, at length sat down by a brook, and fell to eating his apples, when immediately a grevious pain seized his head, so that he supposed them infectious, and began to fear his life: but on the contrary a great pair of goat's horns sprung out of his forehead, and then the pain ceased This made him wonder at himself, and stand amazed, but as he was sad and pensive, an old hermit came to him, and seeing him a stranger, and in that condition, invited him to his cave, and gave him such poor refreshment as he had, which consisted of nuts, wild apples, and roots, and his drink proceeded from a pleasant brook hard by; but Andolocia was more solicitous about his horns than any thing else, and intreated the hermit if he knew any way to cure him, and he would give him ten crowns, which was all the money he had left; for Agrippina had carried away all the jewels as well as the hat; but though he promised to cure him, yet he refused his money, telling him, he had returned from the world, and the vanities of it, and money to him was useless; but going abroad, he brought home six fair apples, two of which Andolocia had no sooner eaten, but his horns dropt of, which made him greatly rejoice. So the good old man bidding him give glory to God, led him out of the forest, and at the edge of it they parted.

Andolocia having some of the hornified apples, and likewise four of the contrary quality, began to meditate revenge on Agrippina, and so coming with all speed to England, he got an opportunity to present them to her, as fruit grown in the holy garden of Jerusalem, to restore decayed beauty and health for several years, make the aged look young, and other wonders. But she had no sooner ate two of them, and finding a drowsiness, lying down to sleep, and dreaming she was turned into a goat; but awaking, she found a strange alteration and going to her glass, and seeing her horns, affrighted, she startled and shrieked out, whereupon her ladies came about her, and were as much affrighted at the sight as she: but a grave matron, who had been her nurse, advised them to be silent, to prevent the disgrace that might follow, till Physicians were consulted, whose might take them away: she kept close in her chamber and the old woman was sent to divers doctors but none of them would undertake it on the penalty she would impose on them, which was a thousand crowns, if she revealed the lady's (illegible text)e, and they did not cure her. But as she was coming back again very pensive, Andolocia, in the garb of a physician, met her, and told her, by her illness, and coming from such a doctor's house, he guessed she had some dear friend in danger of life, in some other great distress which, if she would accept of his services as a physician, he would, no doubt, with the blessing of God, be able to cure her. The old woman believing him, greatly rejoiced that she had found him so opportunely; and telling him the whole matter, which he very well knew before, conveyed him to the princess's chamber privately to a back door, where he found her lying on her bed very much troubled: but she was comforted when he told her he was come to cure her, so he began to make application, and gave her so little of the apple among her drugs that, they only (illegible text)sted by degrees; then telling her he wanted some costly drugs, to make them come off by the roots, and so she should be more beautiful than ever. She arose and went to her coffer in the mean while. Searching about the room, he found his wishing-hat carelessly thrown under the bed, for she knew- not the virtue of it, but supposed some spirit had conveyed her backward and forward before: by this time she called him to receive more money, and, drawing her toward the window that he might, as he pretended, the better discern it, drew his hat from under his coat, clapped it on his head, grasped her in his arms, and away flew with her, purse and all. In this airy voyage she was carried to Flanders, where presenting himself to her in his true shape, and with a stern countenance, reproaching her with her treachery and inconstancy, she fell on her knees and begged his pardon. Whereupon, taking pity or her, at her request he put her into a nunnery, giving the abbes two hundred crowns for her admittance, promising to fetch her as soon as he could find a remedy to take off her horns; and so departed for Cyprus with his hat and purse, the sight of which greatly rejoiced Ampedo, to whom he told all the passage of his travels; and so extolled the beauty of Agrippina, the prince of Cyprus, enamoured on bare report, prevailed with the king his father to send an embassy to desire her in marriage On this Andolocia was solicited to free her from the nunnery, which he did taking of her horns, and carrying her through the air to London; and so with a noble train of lords and ladies they sailed for Cyprus, where she was royally received and splendidly married.

This made many of the nobles envy Andolocia, especially the earls of Armundalia and Limouse vowed his death, who had so much eclipsed their honour; and so setting on him, and his six men, as he passed one day through a wood, they, and their hundred attendants, after a long fight killed his men, took him prisoner, for he had not with him his wishing-hat, and casting him into a dark loathsome dungeon, set him in the stocks, and loaded him with irons, to make him confess whence he had those vast riches; which, through torment, he discovered, and gave them his purse, and they having proved the experiment, thought themselves not safe whilst he was alive, because they knew he could fly through the air, and so might escape, they offered the gaoler the money to despatch him privately; but he refusing, the earl of Armundalia strangled him as he sat in the stocks.

In the mean time, while Ampedo was inconsolable for the loss of his brother, having in vain offered great rewards for his discovery, at length supposing him dead, burnt his wishing-hat, and through grief died, soon after the earls were apprehended and examined, who confessed the fact in all its circumstances for which they were both broken on the wheel.

The Fairy.

There was once upon a time, a widow, who had two daughters. The eldest was so much like her in the face and humour, that whoever looked upon the daughter, saw the mother, they were both so disagreeable and proud, that there was no living with them. The youngest who was the very picture of her father for courtesy and sweetness of temper, was also one of the most beautiful girls ever seen. As people generally love their own likeness, this mother even doted on her eldest daughter, and at the same time, had a horrible aversion for the youngest. She made her eat in the kitchen, and work continually.

Among other things, this poor girl was forced, twice a-day, to draw water about a mile and a half off the house, and bring home a pitcher full of it. One day, as she was at the fountain, there came to her a poor woman, who begged of her to let her drink. "O ay, with all my heart, Goody," said this pretty little girl, and rinsing immediately the pitcher, she took some water from the clearest part of the fountain, and gave it to her, holding up the pitcher all the while, that she might drink the easier.

The good woman having drank, said to her "You are so very pretty, my dear, so good, and so mannerly, that I cannot help giving you a gift, (for this was a Fairy, who had taken the form of a poor country woman, to see how far the civility and good manners of this pretty girl would go.) I will give you for gift, (continued the Fairy) that at every word you speak, there shall come out of your mouth either a flower or a jewel."

When this pretty girl came home, her mother scolded at her for staving so long at the fountain. "I beg your pardon, mamma, said the poor girl, for not making more haste;" and in speaking these words, there came out of her mouth two roses, two pearls, and two diamonds. What is it I see there? said her mother, quite astonished, I think I see pearls and diamonds come out of the girls mouth. How happy is this child! This was the first time, ever she called her child.

The poor creature told her frankly all the matter, not without dropping out infinite numbers of diamonds. "In good faith, cried the mother, I will send my child hither. Come hither, Fanny, look what comes out of your sister's month, when she speaks, wouldst not thou be glad, my dear, to have the same gift given unto thee, thou hast nothing else to do but go and draw water out of the fountain, and when a certain poor woman asks you to give her drink, to give it to her very civilly. It should be a very fine sight indeed, said this ill-bred minx, to see me go draw water. You shall go, hussy, said the mother, and this minute. So away she went, but grumbling all the way, taking with her the best silver tankard in the house.

She was no sooner at the fountain, than she saw coming out of the wood, a lady most gloriously dressed, who came up to her, and asked to drink. This was, you must know, the very fairy who appeared to her sister; but had now taken the air and dress of a princess, to see how far this girl's rudeness would go. 'Am I come hither, said the proud saucy slut, to serve you with water, pray? I suppose the silver tankard was brought purely for your ladyship: was it? However, you may drink of it if you have a fancy."

"You are not over and above mannerly," answered the fairy, without putting herself into a passion: "Well then, since you have no breeding, and are so very disobliging, I give you for gift, that at every word you speak, there shall come out of your mouth a snake or a toad." So soon as her mother saw her coming, she cried out, "Well, daughter." "Well mother," answered the pert hussy, throwing out of her mouth two vipers and two toads. "O mercy!" cried the mother, "what is it I see! O, it is that wretch her sister, who has occasioned all this; but she shall pay for it:" and immediately she ran to beat her. The poor child fled away from her, and went to hide herself in the forest not far from thence.— The king's son then, on his return from hunting, met her, and seeing her very pretty, asked her, 'What she did there alone, and why she cried?' 'Alas, Sir, my mamma has turned me out of doors.' The king's son, who saw five or six pearls, and as many diamonds come out of her mouth, desired her to tell him how that happened. She thereupon told him the whole story; and so the king's son fell in love with her, and considering with himself that such a gift was worth more than any marriage-portion whatsoever in another, conducted her to the palace of the king his father, and there married her.

As for her sister, she made herself so much hated, that her own mother turned her off; and the miserable wretch, having wandered about a good while, without finding any body to take her went to a corner in the wood, and there died.


This work was published before January 1, 1928, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.