[A people of the Greeks at the time of the Trojan war. They are mentioned among the nations of the Mediterranean allied against Rameses III. The Dardaneans were inhabitants of the Trojan provinces of Dardanin, and whose name was used for the Trojans generally.]
lives in my tent, but I for months have slept at the door of your father’s, and I have not once entered my own since she has been there. Now sit down by me, and let me tell you how it all happened. We had pitched the camp before Kadesh, and there was very little for me to do, as Rameses was still laid up with his wound, so I often passed my time in hunting on the shores of the lake. One day I went as usual, armed only with my bow and arrow, and, accompanied by my grey-hounds, heedlessly followed a hare; a troop of Danaids fell upon me, bound me with cords, and led me into their camp.
[Grey-hounds, trained to hunt hares,
are represented in the most
ancient tombs, for instance, the Mastaba at Meydum, belonging to the
time of Snefru (four centuries B. C.).]
There I was led before the judges as a spy, and they had actually condemned me, and the rope was round my neck, when their king came up, saw me, and subjected me to a fresh examination. I told him the facts at full length—how I had fallen into the hands of his people while following up my game, and not as an enemy, and he heard me favorably, and granted me not only life but freedom. He knew me for a noble, and treated me as one, inviting me to feed at his own table, and I swore in my heart, when he let me go, that I would make him some return for his generous conduct.
“About a month after, we succeeded in surprising the Cheta position, and the Libyan soldiers, among other spoil, brought away the Danaid king’s only daughter. I had behaved valiantly, and when we came to the division of the spoils Rameses allowed me to choose first. I laid my hand on the maid, the daughter of my deliverer and host, I led her to my tent, and left her there with her waiting-women till peace is concluded, and I can restore her to her father.”
“Forgive my doubts!” cried Rameri holding out his hand. “Now I understand why the king so particularly enquired whether Nefert believed in your constancy to her.”
“And what was your answer?” asked Mena.
“That she thinks of you day and night, and never for an instant doubted you. My father seemed delighted too, and he said to Chamus: ’He has won there!”
“He will grant me some great favor,” said Mena in explanation, “if, when she hears I have taken a strange maiden to my tent her confidence in me is not shaken, Rameses considers it simply impossible, but I know that I shall win. Why! she must trust me.”
Before the battle,
[The battle about to be described
is taken entirely from the epos of