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The Book of Filial Duty, by Ivan Chen, [1908], at

No. XI

The Gushing Fountain and the Frisking Carp

In the Han dynasty lived Chiang Shih, who served his mother with perfect obedience; and his wife P‘ang also fulfilled her mother-in-law's commands without the least reluctance. The old lady loved to drink of the water from the river six or seven li away from her cottage, and P‘ang used to go to draw it and hand it to her.

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[paragraph continues] She was also fond of carp, and when it was obtained, deeming herself unable to consume alone what her children with great toil and trouble continually prepared for her, usually invited some of the neighbours to feast with her. By the side of the cottage there suddenly gushed a fountain, the taste of whose waters was like that of the river, and it also produced two living fishes daily. These were taken out and prepared by Chiang Shih for his mother.

The fish from the river were fresh and delicious, and the water was sweet; the mother of Chiang Shih wished to taste of both daily. Her son went to purchase the fish and her daughter-in-law to bring the water; as constantly as the revolution of morning and evening did they exert themselves in this arduous labour. Having obtained the fish and water, her countenance brightened, and, laughing, she invited in one of the neighbours to rejoice and partake of them with her. Sitting opposite at the table, together they ate them, she foolishly not even regarding, but totally forgetting, her son and daughter, who with so much trouble had prepared them for her. Heaven took pity on these two filial children, and employed its divine power to assist them, sending a spirit to strike the earth with an axe which caused a perennial spring to bubble forth. The taste of the water from the fountain was like that from the river, and two fish continually sported

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about in it, which henceforth Chiang Shih took out for their sustenance, nor was there any fear of the supply failing. To procure the fish now no money was needed, to obtain the water no long and weary walk was to be taken. It was as if the productions of this river and of the water were transferred into the midst of the cottage; and Chiang Shih could support his family with ease for many years.

Next: No. XII: He carved Wood and served his Parents