E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
The count, returning from his travels, puts up for the night at an inn near his castle. While in bed, a lady enters his chamber, and speaks to him of her devoted love. It is Amina, the somnambulist, who has wandered thither in her sleep. Rodolpho perceives the state of the case, and quits the apartment. The villagers, next morning, come to congratulate their lord on his return, and find his bed occupied by a lady. The tongue of scandal is loud against her, but the count explains to them the mystery, and his tale is confirmed by their own eyes, which see Amina at the moment getting out of the window of a mill, and walking in her sleep along the edge of a roof under which the wheel of the mill is rolling with velocity. She crosses the crazy bridge securely, and everyone is convinced of her innocence. (Bellini: La Sonnambula.) (See AMINA, ELVINO.)