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Enchanted Tapestry

ABOUT the year 1526, the Portuguese attempted to settle at Borneo. Too feeble to make their arms respected, they tried to gain the good-will of one of the Sovereigns of the country, by offering him some Tapestry. This weak Prince took the figures wrought on it for enchanted men, who would strangle him in the night-time, if he suffered them to approach his person. The explanations they gave to remove his apprehensions had no effect: he obstinately refused to permit the present to be brought into his palace; and, at the same time, prohibited the donors from entering his capital. Had his Majesty been acquainted with the Æneid of Virgil, he might have exclaimed what, for the benefit of the Ladies, we shall give in Dryden’s version—

“Somewhat is sure design’d, by fraud or force:
  Trust not their presents, nor admit the horse!”