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Simple answers to Complex Questions and Complex Answers to Simple Questions. In real life, I'm a Greater-Toronto (Canada) Realtor with RE/MAX Hallmark Realty Ltd, Brokerage. I first joined RE/MAX in 1983 and was first Registered to Trade in Real Estate in Ontario in 1974. Formerly known as "Two-Finger Ramblings of a Forensic Acuitant turned Community Synthesizer"

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Sunday, December 04, 2005

The 2nd Greatest Story Ever Told (borrowed actually)

THE EMPEROR'S NEW CLOTHES
ANDERSEN'S FAIRY TALES
by Hans Christian AndersenJanuary, 1999
[Etext #1597][Date last updated: July 1, 2005]
The Project Gutenberg E-text
OnlineE_Book

Many years ago, there was an Emperor, who was so excessively fond of newclothes, that he spent all his money in dress. He did not trouble himself inthe least about his soldiers; nor did he care to go either to the theatre orthe chase, except for the opportunities then afforded him for displaying hisnew clothes. He had a different suit for each hour of the day; and as of anyother king or emperor, one is accustomed to say, "he is sitting in council,"it was always said of him, "The Emperor is sitting in his wardrobe."Time passed merrily in the large town which was his capital; strangers arrivedevery day at the court. One day, two rogues, calling themselves weavers, madetheir appearance. They gave out that they knew how to weave stuffs of the mostbeautiful colors and elaborate patterns, the clothes manufactured from whichshould have the wonderful property of remaining invisible to everyone who wasunfit for the office he held, or who was extraordinarily simple in character."These must, indeed, be splendid clothes!" thought the Emperor. "Had I such asuit, I might at once find out what men in my realms are unfit for theiroffice, and also be able to distinguish the wise from the foolish! This stuffmust be woven for me immediately." And he caused large sums of money to begiven to both the weavers in order that they might begin their work directly.So the two pretended weavers set up two looms, and affected to work verybusily, though in reality they did nothing at all. They asked for the mostdelicate silk and the purest gold thread; put both into their own knapsacks;and then continued their pretended work at the empty looms until late atnight."I should like to know how the weavers are getting on with my cloth," said theEmperor to himself, after some little time had elapsed; he was, however,rather embarrassed, when he remembered that a simpleton, or one unfit for hisoffice, would be unable to see the manufacture. To be sure, he thought he hadnothing to risk in his own person; but yet, he would prefer sending somebodyelse, to bring him intelligence about the weavers, and their work, before hetroubled himself in the affair. All the people throughout the city had heardof the wonderful property the cloth was to possess; and all were anxious tolearn how wise, or how ignorant, their neighbors might prove to be."I will send my faithful old minister to the weavers," said the Emperor atlast, after some deliberation, "he will be best able to see how the clothlooks; for he is a man of sense, and no one can be more suitable for hisoffice than he is."So the faithful old minister went into the hall, where the knaves were workingwith all their might, at their empty looms. "What can be the meaning of this?"thought the old man, opening his eyes very wide. "I cannot discover the leastbit of thread on the looms." However, he did not express his thoughts aloud.The impostors requested him very courteously to be so good as to come nearertheir looms; and then asked him whether the design pleased him, and whetherthe colors were not very beautiful; at the same time pointing to the emptyframes. The poor old minister looked and looked, he could not discoveranything on the looms, for a very good reason, viz: there was nothing there."What!" thought he again. "Is it possible that I am a simpleton? I have neverthought so myself; and no one must know it now if I am so. Can it be, that Iam unfit for my office? No, that must not be said either. I will never confessthat I could not see the stuff.""Well, Sir Minister!" said one of the knaves, still pretending to work. "Youdo not say whether the stuff pleases you.""Oh, it is excellent!" replied the old minister, looking at the loom throughhis spectacles. "This pattern, and the colors, yes, I will tell the Emperorwithout delay, how very beautiful I think them.""We shall be much obliged to you," said the impostors, and then they named thedifferent colors and described the pattern of the pretended stuff. The oldminister listened attentively to their words, in order that he might repeatthem to the Emperor; and then the knaves asked for more silk and gold, sayingthat it was necessary to complete what they had begun. However, they put allthat was given them into their knapsacks; and continued to work with as muchapparent diligence as before at their empty looms.The Emperor now sent another officer of his court to see how the men weregetting on, and to ascertain whether the cloth would soon be ready. It wasjust the same with this gentleman as with the minister; he surveyed the loomson all sides, but could see nothing at all but the empty frames."Does not the stuff appear as beautiful to you, as it did to my lord theminister?" asked the impostors of the Emperor's second ambassador; at the sametime making the same gestures as before, and talking of the design and colorswhich were not there."I certainly am not stupid!" thought the messenger. "It must be, that I am notfit for my good, profitable office! That is very odd; however, no one shallknow anything about it." And accordingly he praised the stuff he could notsee, and declared that he was delighted with both colors and patterns."Indeed, please your Imperial Majesty," said he to his sovereign when hereturned, "the cloth which the weavers are preparing is extraordinarilymagnificent."The whole city was talking of the splendid cloth which the Emperor had orderedto be woven at his own expense.And now the Emperor himself wished to see the costly manufacture, while it wasstill in the loom. Accompanied by a select number of officers of the court,among whom were the two honest men who had already admired the cloth, he wentto the crafty impostors, who, as soon as they were aware of the Emperor'sapproach, went on working more diligently than ever; although they still didnot pass a single thread through the looms."Is not the work absolutely magnificent?" said the two officers of the crown,already mentioned. "If your Majesty will only be pleased to look at it! What asplendid design! What glorious colors!" and at the same time they pointed tothe empty frames; for they imagined that everyone else could see thisexquisite piece of workmanship."How is this?" said the Emperor to himself. "I can see nothing! This is indeeda terrible affair! Am I a simpleton, or am I unfit to be an Emperor? Thatwould be the worst thing that could happen--Oh! the cloth is charming," saidhe, aloud. "It has my complete approbation." And he smiled most graciously,and looked closely at the empty looms; for on no account would he say that hecould not see what two of the officers of his court had praised so much. Allhis retinue now strained their eyes, hoping to discover something on thelooms, but they could see no more than the others; nevertheless, they allexclaimed, "Oh, how beautiful!" and advised his majesty to have some newclothes made from this splendid material, for the approaching procession."Magnificent! Charming! Excellent!" resounded on all sides; and everyone wasuncommonly gay. The Emperor shared in the general satisfaction; and presentedthe impostors with the riband of an order of knighthood, to be worn in theirbutton-holes, and the title of "Gentlemen Weavers."The rogues sat up the whole of the night before the day on which theprocession was to take place, and had sixteen lights burning, so that everyonemight see how anxious they were to finish the Emperor's new suit. Theypretended to roll the cloth off the looms; cut the air with their scissors;and sewed with needles without any thread in them. "See!" cried they, at last."The Emperor's new clothes are ready!"And now the Emperor, with all the grandees of his court, came to the weavers;and the rogues raised their arms, as if in the act of holding something up,saying, "Here are your Majesty's trousers! Here is the scarf! Here is themantle! The whole suit is as light as a cobweb; one might fancy one hasnothing at all on, when dressed in it; that, however, is the great virtue ofthis delicate cloth.""Yes indeed!" said all the courtiers, although not one of them could seeanything of this exquisite manufacture."If your Imperial Majesty will be graciously pleased to take off your clothes,we will fit on the new suit, in front of the looking glass."The Emperor was accordingly undressed, and the rogues pretended to array himin his new suit; the Emperor turning round, from side to side, before thelooking glass."How splendid his Majesty looks in his new clothes, and how well they fit!"everyone cried out. "What a design! What colors! These are indeed royalrobes!""The canopy which is to be borne over your Majesty, in the procession, iswaiting," announced the chief master of the ceremonies."I am quite ready," answered the Emperor. "Do my new clothes fit well?" askedhe, turning himself round again before the looking glass, in order that hemight appear to be examining his handsome suit.The lords of the bedchamber, who were to carry his Majesty's train felt abouton the ground, as if they were lifting up the ends of the mantle; andpretended to be carrying something; for they would by no means betray anythinglike simplicity, or unfitness for their office.So now the Emperor walked under his high canopy in the midst of theprocession, through the streets of his capital; and all the people standingby, and those at the windows, cried out, "Oh! How beautiful are our Emperor'snew clothes! What a magnificent train there is to the mantle; and howgracefully the scarf hangs!" in short, no one would allow that he could notsee these much-admired clothes; because, in doing so, he would have declaredhimself either a simpleton or unfit for his office. Certainly, none of theEmperor's various suits, had ever made so great an impression, as theseinvisible ones."But the Emperor has nothing at all on!" said a little child."Listen to the voice of innocence!" exclaimed his father; and what the childhad said was whispered from one to another."But he has nothing at all on!" at last cried out all the people. The Emperorwas vexed, for he knew that the people were right; but he thought theprocession must go on now! And the lords of the bedchamber took greater painsthan ever, to appear holding up a train, although, in reality, there was notrain to hold.

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