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Page:The Pentamerone, or The Story of Stories.djvu/128

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his pocket, he bolted his door fast, and shot with a cross bow at whoever came near.

Now it happened that at this time a long-bearded Capuchin was passing that way, and not knowing that the king had turned over a new leaf, or perhaps knowing it and wishing to make him change his mind again, he went to Giannone and begged for entertainment in his house. But, with a fierce look and a terrible growl, the king said to him, "If you have no other candle than this, you may go to bed in the dark. The time is gone by when Bertha span[1]; the kittens have their eyes open, and there's no more mammy now[2]." And when the old man asked what was the cause of this change, the king replied; "From my desire to have children, I have spent and have lent to all who came and all who went, and have squandered away all my wealth. At last, seeing that the beard was gone, I stopped and laid aside the razor."

"If that be all," replied the old man, "you may set your mind at rest, for I promise that your wish shall be forthwith fulfilled, on pain of losing my ears."

"Be it so," said the king, "and I pledge my word that I will give you one half of my kingdom." And the man answered, "Listen now to me,—if you wish to hit the mark, you have only to get the heart of a sea-

  1. ↑ A saying well known also in Germany.
  2. ↑ i. e. 'I am no longer a child or a fool.'