« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
smile, he inquired whose child she was ; “For,” said he, "she cannot be your grand-daughter, as I know you never had any children, and you have long since been too old to become a mother."
“Too old or too young,” said the kind old Scherzaran, “she is mine, and so you may go about your business; I want nothing of you, and you shall have nothing from me.”
“That,” said he, “remains to be seen; I have come all the way from the furthest territory of the kingdom of Arabia, at the command of my sovereign, to discover, by my magic art, where his only child has been secreted, who was stolen from his palace one night by her false hag of a mother, and committed to the mercy of the waves in a cedar chest. It is of little use your attempting to deceive me; you know that your husband found her at sea. I am sent to bring her back, and my gracious lord and master has commanded me to reward with a chain of inestimable price the person who should have protected her.” At these words, thinking to dazzle the eyes of the simple cottager, he drew from his bosom a superb gold chain, studded with the most rare and precious jewels, whose lustre seemed to turn back the declining light of the sun to broad noon. But good old Sherzaran was not to be put from her purpose; her great love for the little Narina, and the strong desire she had to fulfil her duty to the child, made her faithful to the sacred charge she had undertaken. “Your gold and your diamonds," said she, “ are no proof that what you tell me is true; the child may be, and I doubt not is, the offspring of some great king or noble; but if he desire to have her restored to him, he must send some one very different in appearance from you to