The False Accusation.

Zulaikha, undiscouraged by hïs repulses, still con­tinues to force him into interviews, and contrives various schemes with the design of seducing him from his allegiance to duty. In a moment of weak­ness she nearly prevails; but he impetuously flies from her presence. Then, believing that he has betrayed her secret, she accuses him to the Vizier.

The Vizier when he heard these words
Could not rest a moment in the same place;
His heart lost all self-possession,
And he turned his tongue into a dagger of reproaches.
He said to Joseph,—“When I had weighed my jewels,
And emptied my treasury to pay thy purchase,
I received thee afterwards to the relation of sonship,
And raised thee to a high place to show thee my esteem;
I gave Zulaikha to be thy companion,
I made her maiden handmaidens to thee;
My slaves bore thy ring in their ears,
And were to thee true and faithful servants;
All my wealth I entrusted to thy keeping,
And in nothing did I cause thee a single uneasiness:
It is not the rule of reason what thou hast done!
God forgive thee the evil thou hast committed!
In this cloister of the world, full of calamities,
Kindness only should be the reward of the kind!
My benefits thou hast rewarded with ingratitude and rebellion;
Fed at my table thou hast turned away thy face, not acknowledging the favour;
Thou hast eaten of my salt, and hast broken the saltdish!”

In vain he asserts his innocence; Zulaikha con­firms her accusation with an oath, and the Vizier summons an officer and consigns him to a prison.