DON GIOVANNI DE LA FORTUNA 359
The messenger took back this answer, but a second time returned with the request that Don Giovanni would present them with his picture, so that they might know what sort of a person to expect. But when it came, and the princess saw the horrible figure, she screamed out, 4 What! many this dirty beggar? Never, never! '
'Ah, child,' answered the king, ' how could I ever guess that the rich Don Giovanni would ever look like that? But I have passed my royal word, and I cannot break it, so there is no help for you.'
' No, father; you may cut off my head, if you choose, but marry that horrible beggar — I never will!'
And the queen took her part, and reproached her husband bitterly for wishing his daughter to marry a creature like that.
Then the youngest daughter spoke : ' Dear father, do not look so sad. As you have given your word, 1 will marry Don Giovanni.' The king fell on her neck, and thanked her and kissed her, but the queen and the elder girl had nothing for her but laughs and jeers.
So it was settled, and then the king bade one of his lords go to Don Giovanni and ask him when the wedding day was to be, so that the princess might make ready.
' Let it be in two months,' answered Don Giovanni, for the time was nearly up that the devil had fixed, and he wanted a whole month to himself to wash off the dirt of the past three years.
The very minute that the compact with the devil had come to an end his beard was shaved, his hair was cut, and his rags were burned, and day and night he lay in a bath of clear warm water. At length he felt lie was clean again, and he put on splendid clothes, and hired a beautiful ship, and arrived in state at the king's palace.
The whole of the royal family came down to the ship to receive him, and the whole way the queen and the elder princess teased the sister about the dirty husband she was going to have. But when they saw how