p. 307 Chapter VII.—The Old Man Tells His Story.
“And I answered: How then do you know that she who fled and took up her residence in a foreign land married the slave, and marrying him died? And the old man said: I am quite sure that this is true, not indeed that she married him, for I did not know even that she fell in love with him; but after her departure, a brother of her husbands told me the whole story of her passion, and how he acted as an honourable man, and did not, as being his brother, wish to pollute his couch, and how she the wretched woman (for she is not blameable, inasmuch as she was compelled to do and suffer all this in consequence of Genesis) longed for him, and yet stood in awe of him and his reproaches, and how she devised a dream, whether true or false I cannot tell; for he stated that she said, “Some one in a vision stood by me, and ordered me to leave the city of the Romans immediately with my children.” But her husband being anxious that she should be saved with his sons, sent them immediately to Athens for their education, accompanied by their mother and slaves, while he kept the third and youngest son with himself, for he who gave the warning in the dream permitted this son to remain with his father. And when a long time had elapsed, during which 1208 he received no letters from her, he himself sent frequently to Athens, and at length took me, as the truest of all his friends, and went in search of her. And much did I exert myself along with him in the course of our travels with all eagerness; for I remembered that, in the old times of his prosperity, he had given me a share of all he had and loved me above all his friends. At length we set sail from Rome itself, and so we arrived in these parts of Syria, and we landed at Seleucia, and not many days after we had landed he died of a broken heart. But I came here, and have procured my livelihood from that day till this by the work of my hands.