XVI. Isis nursed the child by giving it her finger to suck instead of the breast. She likewise put him each night into the fire in order to consume his mortal part, whilst, having transformed herself into a swallow, she circled round the pillar and bemoaned her sad fate. This she continued to do for some time, till the queen, who stood watching her, observing the child to be all of a flame, cried out, and thereby deprived him of some of that immortality which would otherwise have been conferred upon him. The goddess then made herself known, and asked that the pillar which supported the roof might be given to her. Having taken the pillar down, she cut it open easily, and having taken out what she wanted, she wrapped up the remainder of the trunk in fine linen, and having poured perfumed oil over it, she delivered it again into the hands of the king and queen. Now, this piece of wood is to this day preserved in the temple, and worshipped by the people of Byblos. When this was done, Isis threw herself upon the chest, and made at the same time such loud
and terrible cries of lamentation over it, that the younger of the king's sons who heard her was frightened out of his life. But the elder of them she took with her, and set sail with the chest for Egypt. Now, it being morning the river Phaedrus sent forth a keen and chill air, and becoming angry she dried up its current.