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Main > Chinese folktales > Fairy tale "Giauna the Beautiful"

Giauna the Beautiful

The youth questioned Kung regarding his name and family, and the latter told him his whole history. The youth pitied him greatly and advised him to open a school.

Kung answered with a sigh: “I am quite unknown in the neighborhood, and have no one to recommend me!”

Said the youth: “If you do not consider me altogether too unworthy and stupid, I should like to be your pupil myself.”

Young Kung was overjoyed. “I should not dare to attempt to teach you,” he replied, “but together we might dedicate ourselves to the study of science.” He then asked why the house had been standing empty for so long.

The youth answered: “The owner of the house has gone to the country. We come from Shensi, and have taken the house for a short time. We only moved in a few days ago.”

They chatted and joked together gaily, and the young man invited Kung to remain overnight, ordering a small boy to light a pan of charcoal.

Then he stepped rapidly into the rear room and soon returned saying: “My father has come.”

As Kung rose an aged man with a long, white beard and eyebrows stepped into the room and said, greeting him: “You have already declared your willingness to instruct my son, and I am grateful for your kindness. But you must be strict with him and not treat him as a friend.”

Then he had garments of silk, a fur cap, and shoes and socks of fur brought in, and begged Kung to change his clothes. Wine and food were then served. The cushions and covers of the tables and chairs were made of stuffs unknown to Kung, and their shimmering radiance blinded the eye. The aged man retired after a few beakers of wine, and then the youth showed Kung his essays. They were all written in the style of the old masters and not in the new-fangled eight-section form.

When he was asked about this, the youth said with a smile: “I am quite indifferent to winning success at the state examinations!” Then he turned to the small boy and said: “See whether the old gentleman has already fallen asleep. If he has, you may quietly bring in little Hiang-Nu.

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