The Ambassadors.

The beauty and attractions of Zulaikha are so noised abroad, that ambassadors from powerful princes on all sides crowd to her father’s court to demand her hand in marriage. But none come from Egypt, and Zulaikha is deeply disappointed.

“Is no one amongst them a messenger from Egypt?
The love of the Egyptian hath bowed me down!
My heart draweth me mightily towards Egypt!
If there is no messenger from Egypt, what availeth it!
The breeze which riseth from the land of Egypt,
Which bloweth into my eyes the dust of Egypt,
Is a hundred times more precious than the wind,
Which is laden with musk from the deserts of Tatary.”

But no messenger is there from Egypt, and Zulaikha will listen to no other. So her father is compelled to dismiss them with the proverbial excuse — “Who comes first has the first right,”—and to plead the anterior claim of Egypt.