MAAN BEN ZAÏDEH AND THE THREE GIRLS.
It is told of Maan ben Zaïdeh (121) that, being out one day a-hunting, he became athirst and would have drunk, but his men had no water with them. Presently, he met three damsels, bearing three skins of water; so he begged drink of them, and they gave him to drink. Then he sought of his men somewhat to give the damsels; but they had no money; so he gave each girl ten golden-headed arrows from his quiver. Whereupon quoth one of them to her mates, 'Harkye! These fashions pertain to none but Maan ben Zaïdeh; so let each of us recite somewhat of verse in his praise.' Then said the first:He heads his shafts with gold and shooting at his foes, Dispenses thus largesse and bounties far and wide,
And the second:A warrior, for the great excess of his magnificence, both friends and foes enjoy the goods his liberal hands dispense.
And the third:With arrows he shoots at his foes, of his generosity, Whose heads are fashioned and forged of virgin gold, in steel's room;