It was an old Chinaman, a mandarin, who could nod his head. He was of porcelain, too, and he said he was the grandfather of the shepherdess; but this he could not prove. He insisted that he had authority over her, and so when the crooked-legged field-marshal-major-general-corporal-sergeant made proposals to the little shepherdess, he nodded his head, in token of his consent.
“You will have a husband,” said the old mandarin to her, “a husband who, I verily believe, is of mahogany wood. You will be the wife of a field-marshal-major-general-corporal-sergeant, of a man who has a whole cabinet full of silver plate, besides a store of no one knows what in the secret drawers.”
“I will never go into that dismal cabinet,” declared the little shepherdess. “I have heard it said that there are eleven porcelain ladies already imprisoned there.”