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chest a woman's gown, with shoes and stockings, in which Rosetta dressed herself: clad thus as a poor peasant girl, she was as beautiful as the day, and Fretillon danced round her for her amusement.
The old man saw plainly that Rosetta was a lady of distinction, for her bed-clothes were embroidered with gold and silver, and her mattress was covered with satin ; and he begged her to tell him her story. So she told him all, from beginning to end, crying bitterly all the while: for she still thought that the King of the Peacocks had ordered her to be drowned.
How shall we act, my child ? ” said the old man to her. “ You are a noble. princess, used to good living, while I have only black bread and radishes : permit me to go and tell the King of the Peacocks that you are here; for were he once to see you, he would cer
tainly be but too happy to marry you.
“ Alas! he is a wicked man,” said Rosetta, “and would put me to death ; but if you have a little basket, tie it round my dog's neck, and it is hard but he will bring us back something to eat.”
The old man gave the princess a basket, which she tied round Fretillon's neck, and said to him, “Go to the best saucepan in the city and bring back whatever you find in it.” Fretillon ran to the city, and there being no better kitchen than the king's, he went there, found out the best saucepan, and cleverly contrived to bring away its contents.
You may imagine how great was the surprise of the cook, when a little green dog, having only one ear, crept into the kitchen, went to the saucepan, took the meat out of it, and put it in
to his basket. Having followed the dog out of the town, right up to the old man's door, he returned and revealed all to the king, who was very much astonished, and ordered the dog to be sent for. His attendants went accordingly, and finding the old man and the princess dining on the king's boiled meat, bound them with large ropes, and poor Fretillon also, and brought them to the court.
When the king was informed of their arrival, he said, “To-morrow is the last day I granted to those insulting pretenders, and they shall die with the thieves who have stolen my dinner;” and then went into his justice-hall. The old man threw himself on his knees, and said that he would tell the whole truth; and while he was speaking, the king looked at the beautiful princess, and was moved by seeing her in tears. And when the
good old man declared that she was the real Princess Rosetta, who had been thrown into the sea, the king rushed to embrace her, and untying the ropes with which she was bound, told her that he loved her with all his heart.
Her brothers, who were immediately sent for, thought that they were about to be put to death ; they came very sorrowful, hanging down their heads. At the same time the nurse and her daughter were sent for. When they met they all recognised each other; Rosetta threw herself into her brothers' arms; the nurse, her daughter, and the skipper, knelt and asked for pardon. The joy was so great that they were forgiven by the king and the princess, while the good old man was handsomely rewarded.
Moreover, the King of the Peacocks made every apology to Rosetta's brothers for his treatment of them. The