THE FISHERMAN AND HIS WIFE. 105
black and thick, and the foam flew, and the wind blew, and the man was terrified. But he stood and said,
u O man, O man !—if man you be, Or flounder, flounder, in the sea— Such a tiresome wife I've got, For she wants what I do not."
" What is it now ? " said the fish.
" Oh dear ! " said the man, " my wife wants to be emperor."
"Go home with you," said the fish, "she is emperor already."
So the man went home, and found the castle adorned with polished marble and alabaster figures, and golden gates. The troops were being marshalled before the door, and they were blowing trumpets and beating drums and cymbals ; and when he entered he saw barons and earls and dukes waiting about like servants; and the doors were of bright gold. And he saw his wife sitting upon a throne made of one entire piece of gold, and it was about two miles high ; and she had a great golden crown on, which was about three yards high, set with brilliants and carbuncles ; and in one hand she held the sceptre, and in the other the globe; and on both sides of her stood pages in two rows, all arranged according to their size, from the most enormous giant of two miles high to the tiniest dwarf of the size of my little finger ; and before her stood earls and dukes in crowds. So the man went up to her and said,
" Well, wife, so now you are emperor."
" Yes," said she, " now I am emperor."
Then he went and sat down and had a good look at her, and then he said,
" Well now, wife, there is nothing left to be, now you are emperor."
" What are you talking about, husband ? " said she ; " I am emperor, and next I will be pope ! so go and tell the fish so."
" Oh dear !" said the man, " what is it that you don't want ? You can never become pope; there is but one pope in Christendom, and the fish can't possibly do it."
" Husband," said she, " no more words about it; I must and will be pope ; so go along to the fish."