Hindu Tales from the Sanskrit eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 152 pages of information about Hindu Tales from the Sanskrit.

Nothing was now too good for Hari-Sarman:  the king was greatly delighted, and heaped riches and honours upon him.  But some of the wise men at the court suspected that he was really a deceiver, and set about trying to find out all they could about him.  They sent for the man who had been on guard at the prison, and asked him many questions.  He did not dare tell the truth, for he knew he would be terribly punished if he let out that Jihva had been allowed to see his prisoner; but he hesitated so much that the wise men knew he was not speaking the truth.  One of them, whom the king loved, and trusted very much, whose name was Deva-Jnanin, said to his master:  “I do not like to see that man, about whom we really know nothing, treated as he is.  He might easily have found out where the treasure was hidden without any special power.  Will you not test him in some other way in my presence and that of your chief advisers?”

The king, who was always ready to listen to reason, agreed to this; and after a long consultation with Deva-Jnanin, he decided on a very clever puzzle with which to try Hari-Sarman.  A live frog was put into a pitcher; the lid was shut down, and the man who pretended to know everything was brought into the great reception room, where all the wise men of the court were gathered together round the throne, on which sat the king in his royal robes.  Deva-Jnanin had been chosen by his master to speak for him; and coming forward, he pointed to the small pitcher on the ground, and said:  “Great as are the honours already bestowed on you, they shall be increased if you can say at once what is in that pitcher.”

13.  What kind of man do you think the king was from his behaviour to Hari-Sarman?

14.  Was it wise or foolish of Hari-Sarman to remain in the city after his very narrow escape?


Hari-Sarman thought whan he looked at the pitcher:  “Alas, alas, it is all over with me now!  Never can I find out what is in it.  Would that I had left this town with the money I had from Jihva before it was too late!” Then he began to mutter to himself, as it was always his habit to do when he was in trouble.  It so happened that, when he was a little boy, his father used to call him frog, and now his thoughts went back to the time when he was a happy innocent child, and he said aloud:  “Oh, frog, what trouble has come to you!  That pitcher will be the death of you!”

Even Deva-Jnanin was astonished when he heard that; and so were all the other wise men.  The king was delighted to find that after all he had made no mistake; and all the people who had been allowed to come in to see the trial were greatly excited.  Shouting for joy the king called Hari-Sarman to come to the foot of the throne, and told him he would never, never doubt him again.  He should have yet more money, a beautiful house in the country as well as the one he already had in the town, and his children should be brought from the farm to live with him and their mother, who should have lovely dresses and ornaments to wear.

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Hindu Tales from the Sanskrit from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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