Faithful to his word, Michael Tímar, captain of the St. Barbara, becomes the guardian of Kondya, daughter of a Turkish aristocrat on the run. Later, he weds the grateful young Turkish girl whom he saved from the waters of the Danube. While skilfully managing his wife fortune, entrepreneur Tímar becomes an important wholesaler of wheat, and exports his products to Brazil. But his marriage of convenience proves a failure. He is torn between the demands of bourgeois civilisation, governed by money, and the ideal of freedom, consisting in living simply within nature. He then takes refuge by the side of the sweet Noemi on an island on the Danube.