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Patâla and the wood-nymphs. They taught me how to worship Mahalaxmi. In the morning she revealed herself and promised me that Nandanbaneshwar would be found lying dead, that you would give me half your kingdom and half your treasure, that you would build me a palace as high as your own, and that you would call me Navalvat or Wonderways." The king did as the goddess had foretold. He handed half his provinces and half his treasuries to Wonderways, and built him a palace of which the roof was exactly on the same level as that of his own palace.

When Queen Patmadhavrani heard what had happened, she sent for Wonderways and asked him how to worship Mahalaxmi. And he told her all that he had seen the serpent-maidens of Patâla do, and he also told her on the eighth day of the month of Ashwin [1] to tie on her wrist a thread with sixteen strands in it, and to wear it continually for the rest of the month. When the 8th of Ashwin came, Queen Patmadhavrani dutifully tied round her wrist a thread of sixteen strands, and resolved to wear it every

  1. Ashwin corresponds approximately with October.