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The flower nymphs (1)

At the lower temple on Mount Lao the camellias are twenty feet in height, and many spans in circumference. The peonies are more than ten feet high; and when the flowers are in bloom the effect is that of a gorgeous tapestry.

There was a Mr. Huang, of Chiao-chow, who built himself a house at that spot, for the purpose of study; and one day he saw from his window a young lady dressed in white wandering about amongst the flowers. Reflecting that she could not possibly be- long to the monastery, he went out to meet her, but she had already disappeared. After this he frequently observed her, and once hid himself in a thick-foliaged bush, waiting for her to come.

By-and-by she appeared, bringing with her another young lady dressed in red, who, as he noticed from his distant point of observation, was an exceedingly good-looking girl. When they approached nearer, the young lady in the red dress ran back, saying, "There is a man here!" whereupon Mr. Huang jumped out upon them, and away they went in a scare, with their skirts and long sleeves fluttering in the breeze, and perfuming the air round. Huang pursued them as far as a low wall, where they suddenly vanished from his gaze. In great distress at thus losing the fair creatures, he took a pencil and wrote upon a tree the following lines: -

The pangs of love my heart enthrall

As I stand opposite this wall.

I dread some hateful tyrant's power,

With none to save you in that hour.

Returning home he was absorbed in his own thought, when all at once the young lady walked in, and he rose up joyfully to meet her. "I thought you were a brigand," said his visitor, smiling; "you nearly frightened me to death. I did not know you were a great scholar whose acquaintance I now hope to have the honour of making." Mr. Huang asked the young lady her name, &c., to which she replied, "My name is Hsiang-yu, and I belong to Ping-kang-hsiang; but a magician has condemned me to remain on this hill much against my own inclination."

"Tell me his name," cried Huang, "and I'll soon set you free."

"There is no need for that," answered the young lady; "I suffer no injury from him, and the place is not an inconvenient one for making the acquaintance of such worthy gentlemen as your- self." Huang then inquired who was the young lady in red, and she told him that her name was Chiang-hsueh, and that they were half-sisters; "and now," added she, "I will sing you a song; but please don't laugh at me." She then began as follows: -

In pleasant company the hours fly fast,

And through the window daybreak peeps at last.

Ah, would that, like the swallow and his mate,

To live together were our happy fate.

Huang here grasped her hand and said, "Beauty without and intellect within - enough to make a man love you and forget all about death, only one day's absence being like the separation of a thousand miles. I pray you come again whenever an opportunity may present itself."

From this time the young lady would frequently walk in to have a chat, but would never bring her sister with her in spite of all Mr. Huang's entreaties. Huang thought they weren't friends, but Hsiang said her sister did not care for society in the same way that she herself did, promising at the same time to try and persuade her to come at some future day. One evening Hsiang-yu arrived in a melancholy frame of mind, and told Huang that he was wanting more when he couldn't even keep what he had got; "for to-morrow," said she, "we part." Huang asked what she meant; and then, wiping away her tears with her sleeve, Hsiang-yu declared it was destiny, and that she couldn't well tell him. "Your former prophecy," continued she, "has come too true; and now it may well be said of me -

Fallen into the tyrant's power,

With none to save me in that hour."

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The fisherman and his friend (1)

The fisherman and his friend (2)

The flower nymphs (1)

The flower nymphs (2)

The flower nymphs (3)

Football on the Tung-ting lake

The King

The Lo-Cha country and the sea-market (1)

The Lo-Cha country and the sea-market (2)

The Lo-Cha country and the sea-market (3)

The Lo-Cha country and the sea-market (4)

The Lost Brother (1)

The Lost Brother (2)

The Lost Brother (3)

The man who was thrown down a well (1)

The man who was thrown down a well (2)

Miss A-Pao : - Or Perseverance rewarded (1)

Miss A-Pao : - Or Perseverance rewarded (2)

Mr. Chu, The considerate husband

The painted wall

The picture horse

Playing at hanging

The rat wife (1)

The rat wife (2)

The rat wife (3)

The resuscitated corpse

A supernatural wife

The talking pupils

The Taoist novice

The Taoist priest

The three Genii

The tiger of Chao-Cheng

The trader's son (1)

The trader's son (2)

The virtuous daughter-in-law (1)

The virtuous daughter-in-law (2)

The virtuous daughter-in-law (3)

The wonderful stone (1)

The wonderful stone (2)

The young and of the Tung-Ting lake (1)

The young and of the Tung-Ting lake (2)

 

Stories 1

Stories 2

 

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