our brother, and sold him into slavery in Egypt, and as our
brother was exceeding fair in form and face, we thought he
might have been sold for illicit uses, and therefore we
searched even the disreputable houses to find him."
Joseph: "You speak deceitful words, when you call yourselves
sons of Abraham. By the life of Pharaoh, ye are
spies, and you did go from one disreputable house to another
that none might discover you."
The expression "by the life of Pharaoh" might have betrayed
Joseph's real feeling to his brethren, had they but
known his habit of taking this oath only when he meant to
avoid keeping his word later.