THE NOBLEMAN AND HIS HOUSE / THE PRUDENCE OF A NOBLEMAN / NONE IS CONTENTED IN THE WORLD-STORY [34A]

The Nobleman and His House/The Prudence of a nobleman/None is Contented in the World/Who is Contented?

Once there was an wise nobleman. He built a grand house. On the front of the gate he wrote, “This house is to be given to the first man who will be able to prove that he is contented.”

One day while passing through that way a stranger noticed the writing of the gate. He would think himself to be contented and so he decided to claim the possession of the house. Thinking this, he knocked at the gate and desired to speak to the nobleman. “I am the contented person you are looking for,” said the stranger. “So I have come to take the possession of the house. Please give me the house and fulfill your promise.” In reply the nobleman said, “It is true that I wish to give this house to the person who is contented. Can you prove to me that you are contented?” “Yes, I can,” said the stranger confidently. “But I do not see any trace of that quality in you. If you were, in fact, contented, you won’t have wished to get possession of my house.” Saying this he turned the man out of the gate and closed the gate up.

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