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The World’s Wit and Humor: An Encyclopedia in 15 Volumes. 1906.

Abraham a Sancta Clara (Ulrich Megerle) (1644–1709)

A Burdensome Wife

From “Hie! Fie!”

A MAN set sail from Venice for Ancona, with his wife, both being minded to offer their devotions at the shrine of Santa Maria di Loreto. But during the voyage there arose such a great storm that all thought the ship in extreme peril of sinking. The owner of the ship therefore gave his command that each traveler should forthwith throw his most burdensome possessions into the sea, so that the vessel might be made lighter. Some rolled casks of wine overboard, and others bales of cloth; the man from Venice, who did not desire to be found tarrying behind the rest, seized his wife, exclaiming, “Forgive me, Ursula mine, but this day you must drink to my health in salt water!” and would throw her into the sea. The frightened wife making a commotion with her screams, others ran up, and scolded the husband, asking him the cause of his action. “The owner of the ship,” said he, “urgently commanded that we all should throw overboard our heaviest burdens. Now, throughout my whole life nothing has ever been so burdensome to me as this woman; hence I was gladly willing to make her over to Father Neptune.”