She gathers the large duckweed, By the banks of the stream in the southern valley. She gathers the pondweed, In those pools left by the floods.
She deposits what she gathers, In her square baskets and round ones. She boils it, In her tripods and pans.
She sets forth her preparations, Under the window in the ancestral chamber 1. Who superintends the business? It is (this) reverent young lady.
432:1 'The ancestral chamber' was a room behind the temple of the family, dedicated specially to the ancestor of the officer whose wife is the subject of the piece. The princes of states were succeeded, as a rule, by the eldest son of the wife proper. Their sons by other wives were called 'other sons.' The eldest son by the wife proper of one of them became the 'great ancestor' of the clan descended from him, and 'the ancestral chamber' was an apartment dedicated to him. Mâo and other interpreters, going on certain statements as to the training of daughters in the business of sacrificing in this apartment for three months previous to their marriage, contend that the lady spoken of here was not yet married, but was only undergoing this preparatory education. It is not necessary, however, to adopt this interpretation. The lady appears doing the same duties as the wife in the former piece.