The Clever Merchant

One day a merchant was making a journey on horseback when on the way, he came upon a knight journeying in the same direction. Soon it fell dark, and the two travellers found a place to sleep. “If both of us sleep, robbers may take our horses away,” said the knight.

“My horse is white and is visible even from a long distance,” said the merchant, “but yours is dark and needs guarding. You had better keep watch.”

“I am very sleepy,” said the knight. “So I shall change horses with you though mine is young and yours old.”

“Even then, you will have to keep awake,” said the merchant, for the robbers can easily spot your white horse.”

“Then,” said the knight, “I am not swapping my horse.”

“Please yourself,” said the merchant. He lay down and was soon snoring. The knight got up stealthily, untied the merchant’s horse, and then went to sleep. The merchant, who was not sleeping, got up, brought back his white horse, untied the knight’s horse and lay down to sleep again; in the morning, the knight found his horse gone. “Where is my horse?” he asked the merchant.

“The robbers must have taken it,” said the merchant as he got upon his horse and rode away. “I told you that you should have watched it.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *