There was a Homely Maiden who worked hard and was kind as well as strong. Her family was desperate to marry her to a wealthy man so that she may escape a hard life of labor. A few dwellings over lived yet a fairer maiden. She had silky hair and deep oceans within her eyes, she was not a hard worker and her tastes were lavish. Her suitors gave her enough money for small extravagances, so that she never had to work a day in her life.
One day a wealthy merchant and his manservant came to their small village town to sell his wares in the market place. Urged by their parents, the two maidens bought some of his foreign fabrics in order to get his attention. The Merchant favored the fairer of the two, but the Merchant’s manservant offered to marry the Homely maiden.
In one week both maidens were wed and living contently.
But the Fairer maiden drained the Merchant’s wealth in a matter of five years. Five years filled with expensive galas and flamboyant displays of wealth. But the Homely Maiden bought the freedom of her husband from the Merchant. Within five years’ time the Homely Maiden and the Manservant invested their earnings back into the community. She managed their money, oversaw their workers, and provided a service to the village. The Homely Maiden even took care of her parents in their old age.
The Fair Maiden was now a widow who was forced to return to her parents in their old age. She then sells all of her fine things, but it is still not nearly enough to pay off her debts so the fair Maiden begs the Homely Maiden for a place among her workers. The Homely Maiden provides the Fair maiden with a job but the cost of her meager wages is much greater than the Fair Maiden could have expected–She becomes worn down to the point where she becomes homely herself.
A wife of noble character is her husband’s crown, but a disgraceful wife is like decay in his bones. –Proverbs 12:4