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There once lived in Brittany a poor, half-witted fellow named Salaun. His father and mother were dead, and there was no one to care for him, save the good monks who taught school there for the love of God, and to whom Salaun went with the other children of the place.

Day after day, with downcast eyes, but with his soul raised to heaven, Salaun walked along the road talking to himself, and repeating over and over again, like a cooing dove," Hail Mary! Hail Mary!" and our Blessed Lord heard what his lips did not utter.

Sometimes he fasted for whole days, living on prayer alone, and when he grew faint with hunger, he would knock at some cottage door, and meekly say, "Salaun would like some bread." In all his life he was never heard to say anything besides this, except "Hail Mary!" And to the day of his death he never repeated the rest of the prayer.

Hungry as he might be, he was often known to give all his food to some poor creature whom he chanced to meet, even to the bit he was about to put into his mouth. Barefooted and in rags he went his way, heedless of scorn and deaf to the cries of the boys who nicknamed him "The Fool of the Woods." He lived in the woods where to-day stands a chapel of the Blessed Virgin. At night he sought shelter under an oak tree near a beautiful pool of water. Where the oak stood is now an altar, on which is daily offered the holy sacrifice of the Mass. The pool, too, is still there, as the many who have been cured by its healing waters can testify.

At that time some one said of Salaun, "He lodges like a wolf;" and others declared he had a candle when he wanted one, for at night they had seen a light among the leaves when his never-ceasing song, "Hail Mary! Hail Mary!" was borne on the wind.

One day he was promised that if he would add the words "full of grace" to his constant refrain, he should never want for food. But his only answer was, "Hail Mary! Hail Mary!" Nothing more.

In the winter when the sleet whistled and the frosty air rose in wreaths of smoke from the pool, he would pull off his rags and bathe in the freezing water. Then, all shivering, with the icicles hanging on him like a

suit of clothes, he would hurry along the road; and the birds, perched on the trees, mute with cold, would hear him singing to himself, "Hail Mary! Hail Mary!' Afterward he would climb on his oak, and hanging from a limb, swing back and forth like the pendulum of a clock, while from his body, which was like a statue of frost, the melting ice dripped, dripped to the ground. But never did chime of clock sound so shrill as his song of two words, "Hail Mary!"

One day, while alone, Salaun died, abandoned by every one save his good angel; no priest to comfort him, no consecrated ground to cover him. A passing stranger found his poor body under the oak, near the side of the pool, and dug a grave for it. No bell was tolled for him; no Libera chanted. Some of the country folk asked once or twice, "Where is the fool?" "Perhaps the wolves have eaten him," was the answer. But there was no one to ask after him for any length of time.

Ella the Beautiful, daughter of Francis, lord of the near-by castle, who had often given charity to Salaun, wished to enter a convent, and this was a source of much worriment to her father. The third Thursday after Easter, at early dawn, Ella's servants went to Salaun's pool to wash her linen. When they returned

home at noon they could not eat for fear. "We have heard whisperings in the air and in the water," they said; "something is going to happen."

"Going to happen! Something has happened," they were told. "Lord Francis has locked his daughter in a strong room, so that she cannot enter a convent; and as a punishment for this injustice he is stricken so that he can move neither hand nor foot."

When the washerwomen opened the hamper to take out their linen to dry, they heard the words, “Hail Mary! Hail Mary!" The words were in the air, and as each drop of water fell from the linen as it was wrung out, the same words were repeated.

For two days Lord Francis lay helpless and speechless. Then the people of the house opened the door of the room in which Ella was confined, and set her free. The next morning the young girl went to the convent, and there, prostrate on the floor, she prayed that her father might recover his health of mind and body.

As she was returning home she lost her way, and had to spend a whole night in the forest. Toward dawn she found herself in a little glade, in which was an oak and a pool of water; as she stood there she heard distinctly borne on the air the words, "O, Mary! O, Mary!" to which the water sent back answer, "Hail Mary! Hail Mary!"

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