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They fetched out the casket from behind the stove, removed its cloth case, opened the golden snuff-box and the diamond walnut, and there lay the flea, just as it had lain before.

The Emperor gazed and said: "How clever!" but his faith in the Russian workmen was not diminished, and he ordered that his favorite daughter, Alexandra Nikolaevna, be summoned, and commanded her: "Thou hast delicate fingers on thy hands—take the little key and wind up the belly machine of this nymfozoria as speedily as possible."

The Princess began to turn the key, and the flea instantly began to move its feelers, but did not stir its legs. Alexandra Nikolaevna wound up the whole machinery, but still the nymfozoria neither executed its dance nor performed a single variation, as in former times.

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