The Way of a Virgin/First Meeting Between a Youth and His Fiancee


AN old man had a son, a fine lad. Another old man had a daughter, a marriageable girl. They pictured these two young ones married. "Ivanouchka," said the father, "I desire thee to marry the daughter of our neighbour; approach her and discourse gently and courteously with her."

"Machoutka," said the other old man, "I would give thee in marriage to the son of our neighbour; seek to meet him and have pleasant converse with him."

These two young persons met in the street and greeted each other.

"Ivanouchka," quoth the young girl, "my father hath bade me have pleasant discourse with thee."

"My father hath instructed me likewise," answered the youth.

"What shall we do? Where sleepest thou, Ivanouchka?"

"In the hay."

"As for me," quoth the girl, "I sleep in the coach-house. Come this night to me, and we will hold pleasant converse together."

Thus it was. During the night Ivanouchka went and lay down with Machoutka.

"Camest thou by the threshing-floor?" asked she.

"Yea. Hast thou seen the heap of dung?"

"I have seen it."

"What shall we do now?"[2]

"I must see if thou hast a good instrument."

"Come, look," said he, and undid his drawers. "Behold my riches!"

"Tis too big for me! See how small is mine!"

"Let me see if mine will go in."

And the youth set himself to make the trial; his yard rose up erect like a stake, and when he thrust it in, the young girl cried with all her might:

"Ah! that hurteth me! How it biteth!"

"Have no fear. My yard hath not sufficient room; for that reason it is so angry."

"I told thee that there was not sufficient space for it."

"Wait—it will stretch."

Anon, when he made her to feel much pleasure, she said to him:

"Ah! my little heart! Thy riches are indeed worth much money."

They performed and fell asleep.

But the girl awoke during the night, and kissed the backside of the young man, which she took for his face. He let her do this to satiety, and the girl said to him:

"Knowest thou, Vania, that thou smellest most scurvily!"

  1. Kruptadias Heilbronn: Henninger Fréres, 1883: vol. 1: Secret Stories from the Russian.
  2. The young people are obviously nervous, and are making conversation.