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Subject |  The mermaid kissed his fair and lofty brow Sunday, 20.01.12 ( 40hit )

t<br>o see.'Good heavens!' thought he, 'is it possible that I am a fool. I havenever thought so, and nobody must know it. Am I not fit for my pos<br>t? Itwill ne<br>ver do to say that I cannot see the stuffs.''Well, sir, you don't say anything about the stuff,' said the one whowas pretending to weave.'Oh, it is bea<br>utiful! quite charming!' said the old minister, lookingthrough his spectacles; 'this pattern and these colours! I wil<br>lcertainly tell the E<br>mperor that the stuff pleases me very much.''We are delighted to hear you say so,' said the swindlers, and then theynam<br>ed all the colours and described the peculiar pattern. The oldminister paid great attention to what they said, so as to be able torepeat it <br>when he got home to the Emperor.[Illustration: _They pointed to the empty loom, and the poor oldminister stared as hard as he could, but he <br>could not see anything, forof course there was nothing to see._]Then the swindlers went on to demand more money, more silk, andmore gold, to be able to proceed w<br>ith the weaving; but they put it allinto their own pockets--not a single strand was ever put into the loom,but they went on as before weaving at the empty loom.The Emperor soon sent another faithful official to see how the stuff wasgetting on, and if it would<br> soon be ready. The s<br>ame thing happened tohim as to the minister; he looked and looked, but as there was only theempty loom, he could see nothing at all.'Is not thi<br>s a beautiful piece of stuff?' said both the swindlers,showing and explaining the beautiful pattern and colours which were notthere to be seen.'I know I am not a fool!' thought the man, 'so it must be that I amunfit for my good post! It is very strange, though! However, one mus<br>tnot let it appear!' So he praised the stuff he did not see, and assuredthem of his delight in the beautiful colours and the originality of thedesign. 'It is absolutely charming!' he said to the Emperor. Everybodyin the town was talking about this splendid stuff.Now the Emperor thought he would like to see it while it was still onthe loom. So, accompanied by a number of selected courtiers, among whomwere the t<br>wo faithful officials who had already seen the imaginarystuff, he went to visit the crafty impostors, who were working away ashard as ever they could at the empty loom.'It is magnificent!' said both the honest officials. 'Only see, yourMajesty, what a design! What <br>colours!' And they pointed to the emptyloom, for they thought no doubt the others could see the stuff.'What!' thought the Emperor; 'I see no<br>thing at all! This is terrible! AmI a fool? Am I not fit to be Emperor? Why, nothing worse could happen tome!''Oh, it is beautiful!' said the Emperor. 'It has my<br> highest approval!'and he nodded his satisfaction as he gazed at the empty loom. Nothingwould induce him to say that he could not see anything.The whole suite gazed and gazed, but saw nothing more than all theothers. However, they all exclaimed with his Majes<br>ty, 'It is verybeautifu<br>l!' and they advised him to wear a suit made of this wonderfulcloth on the occasion of a great procession which was j<br>ust about to tak<br>eplace. 'It is magnificent! gorgeous! excellent!' went from mouth tomouth; they were all equally delighted with it. The Emperor gave each of<br>the rogues an order of knighthood to be worn in their buttonholes andthe title of 'Gentlemen weavers.'[Illustration: _Then the emperor walked

  'Well we shall soon see if that is true,' th vHshoBBy
  Thenher sisters rose above the water; t vHshoBBy

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