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The Four Girls and the King.

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The Four Girls and the King The great king Janus II ruler of the several Greek islands who was famous amongst his people for accomplishing so much at such a young age now spent the day sitting on the throne and holding court with his ministers. Although during one evening whilst he was in the library at night he would wander through his kingdom in disguise looking for adventures. One evening he saw four girls sitting under a tree in a garden, talking very earnestly to each other. He stopped to listen. The first said, "Of all the tastes, the taste of meat is the best." The second said, "I don't agree. There's nothing so good as the taste of wine." "No, no," cried the third, "you are both wrong. The sweetest taste of all is the taste of love." "Meat and wine and love are sweet all right," said the fourth, "but nothing can equal the taste of telling lies." Their fathers then called the girls' home, and they left. The king, who had listened to this conversation with great interest, made a mental note of the houses they went to, marked each door with chalk, and returned to his palace. The next morning he called his minister and said to him, "Send someone to that narrow street next to the garden, and fetch the owners of the four houses which have a round mark of chalk on their doors." ...read more.


But I was mistaken. They came back the very next day and did the same things. That's when I said to myself, 'The taste of wine must be very mouth-watering. Otherwise these men would never have come back for more of it.' " The king said, "Yes, child, you're right. The taste of wine is indeed mouth-watering." And he sent her home with a handsome present. He then called in the third girl and asked her, "What were you talking about last night under the tree?" "I wasn't saying anything about you, Your Highness," said the girl. "I know that. But tell me what you were saying." "I was saying," she said, "nothing in the world is so sweet as the taste of lovemaking." "But," said the king, "you are a very young girl! How can you know anything about making love? Whose daughter are you?" "I'm the daughter of a courtesan," she replied. "It's true I'm very young, but I have eyes and ears. From what I've seen I guess somehow that lovemaking must be very pleasant. My mother suffered so much when my little brother was born. She didn't even expect to live. Yet very soon after that, she went back to her old ways as a dancing-girl and welcomed her lovers just as before. That's why I think lovemaking must be irresistible." "You're absolutely right," said the king, and sent her home with a handsome present. ...read more.


Obviously they are true sons of their fathers. Is it possible that I, the king, am illegitimate and that's why I cannot see God? Admitting to this will lead to confusion of every kind. So I have to say that I have seen Him too." Having decided this, the king stepped out and joined the rest. "And now, Your Highness, have you also seen God?" asked the girl who was waiting for his return. "Yes," he answered firmly, "I have seen God." "Really?" she asked again. "Certainly," insisted the king. The girl asked the same question three times, and all three times the king lied without a blush. "O king," said the girl, "don't you have a conscience? How could you possibly see God, since God is a spirit?" Hearing this rebuke, the king suddenly remembered the girl saying that one day he too would lie, and he broke into laughter and confessed that he had not seen God at all. The two ministers, by now shamefaced and alarmed, also confessed the truth. Then the girl said, "O king, we poor people have to tell lies now and then to save our lives, but what did you have to fear? Telling lies, therefore, has its own attractions for many, and to them at least the taste of lying is sweet." The king was not offended by the trick the girl had played on him. Instead, he was so struck by her wit and confidence that he asked for her hand and married her. She became his confidential adviser in all his affairs, public and private and they lived happily ever after! ...read more.

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