Memoirs of a White Elephant, The by Judith Gautier (1845 - 1914)

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"We are told by writers of antiquity that elephants have written sentences in Greek, and that one of them was even known to speak. There is, therefore, nothing unreasonable in the supposition that the White Elephant of this history, the famous "Iravata" so celebrated throughout Asia, should have written his own memoirs. The story of his long existence—at times so glorious, and at other times so full of misfortune—in the kingdom of Siam, and the India of the Maharajahs and the English, is full of most curious and interesting adventure. After being almost worshipped as an idol, Iravata becomes a warrior; he is made prisoner with his master, whose life he saves, and whom he assists to escape.Later he is deemed worthy to be the guardian and companion of the lovely little Princess Parvati, for whose amusement he invents wonderful games, and to whom he renders a loving service.We see how a wicked sentiment having crept into the heart of the faithful Elephant, usually so wise and good, he is separated for a long time from his beloved Princess, and meets with painful and trying experiences. But at last he once more finds his devoted friend the Princess, and her forgiveness restores him to happiness." - Summary by the author's foreword

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