THE CHILDREN AND THE MIRROR
Pay heed to this advice, and take stock of yourself regularly.
There was a man who had an extremely ugly daughter and a son who was remarkable
for his good looks. While the two of them were playing childish games, they happened
to look into a mirror which had been left lying on their mother's armchair. The
boy boasted about his beauty, and this made the girl angry. She couldn't stand
her boastful brother's jokes, since she naturally took everything he said as
a slight against herself. Spurred by jealousy, the girl wanted to get back at
her brother, so she went running to their father and accused her brother of having
touched something that was only for women, even though he was a man. The father
hugged and kissed his children, bestowing his tender affection on them both,
and said, 'I want for you to use the mirror each and every day: you, my son,
so that you will remember not to spoil your good looks by behaving badly, and
you, my daughter, so that you will remember to compensate for your appearance
by the good quality of your character.'