Long time ago there lived a man and his wife in a remote village in the country. They had a little girl, whom they very much loved. One day the man went away on business to a distant city.
At last he returned to his home, with a basket full of gifts to his wife and daughter. Reaching home he opened a cane basket. He watched the curious eyes of her daughter, who was gazing at the basket. He took out a wonderful doll and a lacquer box of cakes and gave them to her outstretched hands. Once more he dived into his basket, and presented his wife with a metal mirror. Its convex surface shone brightly, while upon its back there was a design of pine trees and storks.
The good man's wife had never seen a mirror before, and on gazing into it she was under the impression that another woman looked out upon her as she gazed with growing wonder. Her husband explained the mystery and told her that it is her own image that she sees the mirror.
Not long after this happy homecoming and distribution of presents the woman became very ill. Just before she died she called to her little daughter, and said: "Dear child, when I am dead take every care of your father. You will miss me when I have left you. But take this mirror, and when you feel most lonely look into it and you will always see me." Having said these words she passed away.