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Main > Indian folktales > Fairy tale "Light Makes Prosperity"

Light Makes Prosperity

The palace was reached, and the ring was given back to the king with the explanation. His majesty was charmed at the modesty and truthfulness of Suguṇî, and asked her to name her reward.

“My most gracious sovereign! King of kings! Supreme lord! Only a slight favour thy dog of a servant requests of your majesty. It is this, that on a Friday night all the lights in the town be extinguished, and not a lamp be lit even in the palace. Only the house of thy dog of a servant must be lighted up with such lights as it can afford.”

“Agreed, most modest lady. We grant your request, and we permit you to have the privilege you desire this very next Friday.”

Joyfully she bowed before his majesty, and returned with her husband and the others to her house. She then pledged the last jewel she had by her and procured some money.

Friday came. She fasted the whole day, and as soon as twilight approached she called both the brothers of her husband, and thus addressed them:—

“My brothers, I have made arrangements for lighting up our house with one thousand lamps to-night. One of you, without ever closing your eyes for a moment, must watch the front of our house and the other the back. If a woman of a graceful appearance and of feminine majesty wishes you to permit her to enter it, boldly tell her to swear first never to go out again. If she solemnly agrees to this, then permit her to come in. If in the same way any woman wishes to go out, make a similar condition that she must swear never to return at any time in her life.”

What Suguṇî said seemed ridiculous to the brothers; but they allowed her to have her way, and waited to see patiently what would take place.

The whole town was gloomy that night, except Suguṇî’s house; for, by order of his majesty, no light was lit in any other house. The Ashṭalakshmîs—the Eight Prosperities—entered the town that night and went house by house into every street. All of them were dark, and the only house lit up was Suguṇî’s. They tried to enter it, but the brother at the door stopped them and ordered them to take the oath.

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