Page:The Folk-Lore Journal Volume 7 1889.djvu/396

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forest, and took it to liim, telling him it was a magic ring tliat would grant every wish, and that he was never to let any one else put it on.

The youth wished, and in the morning a splendid palace had sprung up in front of the house. All the people of the country flocked to see it, and the king came with his daughter. The youth married the princess. A Brahmin, who was the princess's teacher, could not see any particular personal marks on him indicative of extraordinary good luck, but noticed the ring ; and one day when the young man was absent, he went to the princess and said, " Lady, does your husband love you very much ?" She answered, " How can you ask me such a silly question ? Am not I of royal race, and is not he a mere merchant ? " Then said the Brahmin, "Ah ! if that is the case, I suppose you often wear that beautiful ring of his ?" " Yes," said the princess, "if I did not wear it, I should like to know who would." One day when they were together the princess asked him to let her put it on, and as he was really very fond of her he let her have it, telling her never to let any one else have it. Shortly afterwards the Brahmin came again, and asked her if she had got the ring, whereupon she said, " Yes, here it is ; I have got it on." He begged hard to be allowed to look at it, and at last one of her maids persuaded her to let the Brahmin have it. As soon as the Brahmin got it he turned into a crow (the Indian crow is a worse thief than a magpie) and flew off to an island in the midst of the ocean, where he dwelt in a palace.

When the youth came home, and heard about it, he was in a terrible state of despondency. The cat took note of this, and one day hap- pening to find some necklaces of gold near a lake, which belonged to some fairies (Devi) who were bathing in it, she took them away, and would not give them back till the fairies promised to build a bridge that would reach the island in which the Brahmin was. This they did, and the cat, creeping along it stealthily, found the Brahmin asleep, got back the ring, and gave it to the rich man's son in return for the kindness with which he had treated her.

Shortly after this a band of robbers came to the house at night, but the dog was awake, and, seizing the leader, threw him down the well, whereupon all the rest ran away. Next morning he told his