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with his papers, and requested a license as a
donkey-driver. This was granted, and Ibrahim
entered the service of a man who let
out asses, both for carrying water and for hire.

Ibrahim was extremely handsome and very
graceful in his demeanour; but, being so poor,
his clothes were too ragged for him to be
employed on anything but drudgery that was
out of sight. He used to be sent with water-
skins to the meanest parts of the town.

One day, as he was driving his ass
laden with water up a narrow street, he met
a cavalcade of women riding (as usual in
that country) upon donkeys covered with
sumptuous housings. He drew on one side
to allow them to pass by, but a string of
camels coming up at the same instant, there
ensued some confusion. The veil of one of
the women became slightly deranged, and
Ibrahim caught sight of a lovely countenance.

He contrived to ascertain who the lady was
and where she lived. She was Rebecca, the
only daughter of a wealthy Jew.

From this time, Ibrahim had but one
thought; that of becoming rich enough to
demand Rebecca in marriage. He had
already saved up a few pieces of money;
with these he bought himself better clothes,
and he was now sometimes sent to conduct
the donkeys hired out for riding.

It so chanced, that one of his first expeditions
was to take Rebecca and her attendants
to a mercer's shop. Either from accident or
coquetry, Rebecca's veil became again
deranged, and again Ibrahim beheld the
heavenly face beneath it. Ibrahim's appearance,
and his look of burning passionate love, did not
displease the young Jewess. He frequently
attended her on her excursions, and he was
often permitted to see beneath the veil.

Ibrahim deprived himself almost of the
necessaries of life, and at length saved enough
money to purchase an ass of his own. By
degrees he was able to buy more, and became
a master employing boys under him.

When he thought himself sufficiently well
off in the world, he presented himself before
the family of Rebecca, and demanded her in
marriage; but they did not consider his
prospects brilliant, and rejected his proposals with
contempt. Rebecca, however, sent her old
nurse to him (just as a lady in the ' Arabian
Nights' might have sent a similar messenger)
to let him know that the family contempt
was not shared by her.

Ibrahim was more determined than ever to
obtain her. He went to a magician, who
bade him return to Algiers, and declared that
if he accepted the first offer of any kind which
he should receive after entering the city, he
would become rich and obtain the desire of
his heart.

Ibrahim sold his asses and departed for
Algiers. He walked up and down the streets
till nightfall, in expectation of the mysterious
offer which had been foretoldbut no one

He had, however, been observed by a rich
widow, somewhat advanced in years, a French-
woman and the widow of an officer of
engineers. She dispatched an attendant to
discover who he was and where he lived, and the
next day sent for him to her house. His
graceful address fascinated her even more
than his good looks, and she made him
overtures of marriage: offering at the same time
to settle upon him a handsome portion of her

This was not precisely the mode in which
Ibrahim had intended to make his fortune;
but, he recollected the prediction of the
magician, and accepted the proposal.

They were married, and for twelvemonths
Ibrahim lived with his wife in great splendour
and apparent happiness. At the end of that
time he professed to be called to Tunis by
indispensable business, which would require his
presence for some time. His wife made no
opposition, though she was sorry to lose him,
and wished to accompany him; but that he
prohibited, and departed alone: taking with
him a good supply of money.

He again presented himself before the
French Consul at Tunis, who was surprised
at the change in his appearance. His vest of
flowered silk, brocaded with gold, was girded
round the waist by a Barbary sash of the
richest silk; his ample trowsers of fine cloth
were met by red morocco boots; a Cashmere
shawl of the most radiant colours was twisted
round his head; his beard, carefully trimmed,
fell half-way down his breast; a jewelled
dagger hung at his girdle; and an ample
Bournooz worn over all, gave an additional
grace to his appearance, while it served to
conceal his rich attire, which far exceeded the
license of the sad-coloured garments
prescribed by law to the Jews.

He lost no time in repairing to the house
of Rebecca. She was still unmarried, and
again he made his proposals; this time it was
with more success. He had all the appearance
of a man of high consideration; and the
riches which he half-negligently displayed,
took their due effect. He had enjoyed a good
character when he lived at Tunis before, and
they took it for granted that he had done
nothing to forfeit it. They asked no questions
how his riches had been obtained, but gave
him Rebecca in marriage.

At the end of six months, the French
Consul received inquiries from Algiers about
Ibrahim; his wife, it was said, had become
alarmed at his prolonged absence.

The Consul sent for Ibrahim, and told him
what he had heard. Ibrahim at first appeared
disturbed and afterwards indignant. He
denied in the strongest terms that he had
any other wife than Rebecca, but owned
that the woman in question had fallen in
love with him. He also denied that he had
given her any sort of legal claim upon him.
The French Consul was perplexed; Ibrahim's
papers were all regular, he had always led