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PARWATI AND THE PRIEST

all the marks of royal origin. So he summoned him to his house and married him to his daughter and seated him on his own throne. Now the next Monday was the seventeenth Monday since the Brahman's son had begun the rites which the Apsaras had told to the priest. That morning he got up and went to the temple and sent a message home to his wife that she should send him five sers of flour mixed with ghee and treacle. But the queen was too proud to do this. For she feared that the people in the street would laugh at her if she sent her husband five sers of flour mixed with ghee and treacle. So instead she sent him five hundred rupees in a plate. But because the flour and ghee and treacle were not sent, the king was unable to complete his ceremonial, and it was all spoilt. And the god Shiva instead of being pleased became very angry indeed. And he told the king that, if he kept the queen as his wife, he would lose his kingdom and die a beggar. Next day the king sent for his chief minister and told him what had happened. At first the minister said, "The kingdom belongs to the queen's father. If you drive her out your

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