The Greedy Priest

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The Avaricious Priest In the parish of St. Nicholas there lived a priest. This priest’s eyes were thoroughly peaceful. He served St. Nicholas several years, and went on serving until all of his resources for food and lodging ran out. Then the priest collected all the church keys, looked at the picture of Saint Nicholas, thumped him, out of spite, over the shoulders with the keys, and went forth from his parish as his eyes led him. And as he walked along the road he suddenly saw an unknown man. ‘Hail, good man!’ said the stranger to the priest. ‘Whence do you come and whither are you going? Take me with you as a companion.’ Well, they went on together. They walked and walked for several miles, and then they grew tired. It was time to seek rest. Now the priest had a few biscuits in his bag, and the companion he had picked had a couple of small loaves.‘Lets eat your loaves first,’ says the priest, ‘and afterwards we’ll take to the biscuits, too.’ ‘Agreed!’ replies the stranger. ‘We’ll eat my loaves, and keep your biscuits for afterwards.’ Well, they ate away at the loaves; each of them ate his fill, but the loaves got no smaller and looked never ending. The priest grew envious ‘Come,’ thinks he, ‘I’ll steal them from him!’ After the meal the old man lay down to take a nap, but the priest kept scheming how to steal the loaves from him. The old man went to sleep. The priest drew the loaves out of his pocket and began quietly nibbling them at his seat. The old man awoke and felt for his loaves; they were gone. ‘Where are my loaves?’ he exclaimed; ‘who has eaten them? was it you, priest?’ ‘No, not I, on my word!’ replied the priest. ‘Well, so be it,’ said the old man. They gave themselves a nice stretch, and set out again on their journey. They walked and walked; suddenly the road branched off in two different directions. Well, they both went the same way, and reached a

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