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Title: A Plain and Literal Translation of the Arabian Nights Entertainments, now entituled The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night (5 of 17)
Author: Burton, Richard F.
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.

*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "A Plain and Literal Translation of the Arabian Nights Entertainments, now entituled The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night (5 of 17)" ***



[Illustration: لا لابرار كلّ شي تبر]

                   “TO THE PURE ALL THINGS ARE PURE.”
                           (Puris omnia pura)

                                                        —_Arab Proverb._

          “Niuna corrotta mente intese mai sanamente parole.”


              “Erubuit, posuitque meum Lucretia librum
                  Sed coram Bruto. Brute! recede, leget.”


            “Mieulx est de ris que de larmes escripre,
                Pour ce que rire est le propre des hommes.”


“The pleasure we derive from perusing the Thousand-and-One Stories makes
us regret that we possess only a comparatively small part of these truly
enchanting fictions.”

                                      —CRICHTON’S “_History of Arabia_.”





                           _THE BOOK OF THE_
                     =Thousand Nights and a Night=


                               VOLUME V.

                           RICHARD F. BURTON




                            Shammar Edition

Limited to one thousand numbered sets, of which this is

                              Number _547_

                          PRINTED IN U. S. A.

                         TO DOCTOR GEORGE BIRD.


This is not a strictly medical work, although in places treating of
subjects which may modestly be called hygienic. I inscribe it to you
because your knowledge of Egypt will enable you to appreciate its finer
touches; and for another and a yet more cogent reason, namely, that you
are one of my best and oldest friends.

                         Ever yours sincerely.

                                                      RICHARD F. BURTON.

 ATHENÆUM CLUB, _October 20, 1885_.

                     CONTENTS OF THE FIFTH VOLUME.


 THE EBONY HORSE                                                       1

 (_Lane, Vol. II., Chapt. XVII. Story of the Magic Horse: pp. 517–545._)


    (_Chapt. XVIII. Story of Uns el-Wujood and El-Ward fi’l-Akmam: p.



            (_Anecdote of a Man and his Slave-Girl: p. 578._)

 THE LOVERS OF THE BANU OZRAH                                         70

              (_Anecdote of Two Victims of Love: p. 579._)

 THE WAZIR OF AL-YAMAN AND HIS YOUNG BROTHER                          71

 THE LOVES OF THE BOY AND GIRL AT SCHOOL                              73

                      (_Love in a School: p. 580._)

 AL-MUTALAMMIS AND HIS WIFE UMAYMAH                                   74

 HARUN AL-RASHID AND ZUBAYDAH IN THE BATH                             75

 HARUN AL-RASHID AND THE THREE POETS                                  77

 MUS’AB BIN AL-ZUBAYR AND AYISHAH HIS WIFE                            79

 ABU AL-ASWAD AND HIS SLAVE-GIRL                                      80

 HARUN AL-RASHID AND THE TWO SLAVE-GIRLS                              81

 HARUN AL-RASHID AND THE THREE SLAVE-GIRLS                            81

 THE MILLER AND HIS WIFE                                              82

        (_Lane, Vol. II. Anecdote of a Faithless Wife: p. 582._)

 THE SIMPLETON AND THE SHARPER                                        83

           (_Anecdote of a Simpleton and a Sharper: p. 582._)


 THE CALIPH AL HAKIM AND THE MERCHANT                                 86

 (_Anecdote of El-Hakim bi-amri-llah and a Merchant of Cairo: p. 583._)


                  (_Anecdote of Anooshirwán: p. 884._)

 THE WATER-CARRIER AND THE GOLDSMITH’S WIFE                           89

 KHUSRAU AND SHIRIN AND THE FISHERMAN                                 91

      (_Anecdote of Khusrow and Sheereen and a Fisherman: p. 585._)

 YAHYA BIN KHALID AND THE POOR MAN                                    92

               (_Anecdote of Yahya el-Barmekee: p. 586._)

 MOHAMMED AL-AMIN AND THE SLAVE-GIRL                                  93

   (_Mohammad el-Emeen and the Slave-Girl El-Bedr el-Kebeer: p. 587._)


        (_Anecdote of El-Fadl and Ja’afar the Barmekee: p. 588._)

 THE WOMAN’S TRICK AGAINST HER HUSBAND                                96

                (_Anecdote of a Deceitful Wife: p. 589._)

 THE DEVOUT WOMAN AND THE TWO WICKED ELDERS                           97

 JA’AFAR THE BARMECIDE AND THE OLD BADAWI                             98

 OMAR BIN AL-KHATTAB AND THE YOUNG BADAWI                             99

                   (_Anecdote of a Homicide: p. 589._)

 AL-MAAMUN AND THE PYRAMIDS OF EGYPT                                 105

 THE THIEF AND THE MERCHANT                                          107

               (_Anecdote of an Impudent Thief: p. 592._)

 MASRUR THE EUNUCH AND IBN AL-KARIBI                                 109

           (_Compact of Mesroor with Ibn el-Karibee: p. 594._)

 THE DEVOTEE PRINCE                                                  111

   (_Lane, Vol. II. Anecdote of a Devotee Son of Harun er-Rasheed: p.

 THE SCHOOLMASTER WHO FELL IN LOVE BY REPORT                         117

 THE FOOLISH DOMINIE                                                 118


           (_Anecdote of an Illiterate Schoolmaster: p. 599._)

 THE KING AND THE VIRTUOUS WIFE                                      121


                          (_The Rukh: p. 600._)

 ADI BIN ZAYD AND THE PRINCESS HIND                                  124


 ISAAC OF MOSUL AND THE MERCHANT                                     129

 THE THREE UNFORTUNATE LOVERS                                        133

 HOW ABU HASAN BRAKE WIND                                            135

 THE LOVERS OF THE BANU TAYY                                         137

            (_Result of Restraint upon Two Lovers: p. 601._)

 THE MAD LOVER                                                       138

               (_Anecdote of a Distracted Lover: p. 602._)

 THE PRIOR WHO BECAME A MOSLEM                                       141

                    (_The Converted Prior: p. 603._)

 THE LOVES OF ABU ISA AND KURRAT AL-AYN                              145

                (_Aboo’Esa and Kurrat el-‘Eyn: p. 606._)

 AL-AMIN AND HIS UNCLE IBRAHIM BIN AL-MAHDI                          152

 AL-FATH BIN KHAKAN AND AL-MUTAWAKKIL                                153


 ABU SUWAYD AND THE PRETTY OLD WOMAN                                 163

 ALI BIN TAHIR AND THE GIRL MUUNIS                                   164



    (_Lane, Vol. II., Chapt. XIX. Story of ‘Alee of Cairo: p. 609._)

 THE PILGRIM MAN AND THE OLD WOMAN                                   186

          (_Anecdote of a Townsman and a Bedaweeyeh: p. 635._)

 ABU AL-HUSN AND HIS SLAVE-GIRL TAWADDUD                             189


 THE ANGEL OF DEATH AND THE RICH KING                                248


          (_A Tyrannical King and the Angel of Death: p. 636._)


 THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF KING ANUSHIRWAN                                254

 THE JEWISH KAZI AND HIS PIOUS WIFE                                  256

 THE SHIPWRECKED WOMAN AND HER CHILD                                 259

 THE PIOUS BLACK SLAVE                                               261

 THE DEVOUT TRAY-MAKER AND HIS WIFE                                  264

              (_Advantages of Piety and Industry: p. 637._)

 AL-HAJJAJ BIN YUSUF AND THE PIOUS MAN                               269




  (_Lane, Vol. II. Anecdote of a Moslem Warrior and a Christian Maiden:
                                p. 639._)


 THE PROPHET AND THE JUSTICE OF PROVIDENCE                           286

                 (_The Justice of Providence: p. 612._)

 THE FERRYMAN OF THE NILE AND THE HERMIT                             288

 THE ISLAND KING AND THE PIOUS ISRAELITE                             290

 ABU AL-HASAN AND ABU JA’AFAR THE LEPER                              294

 THE QUEEN OF THE SERPENTS                                           298

   _a._ THE ADVENTURES OF BULUKIYA                                   304

   _b._ THE STORY OF JANSHAH                                         329

                          THE EBONY HORSE.[1]

There was once in times of yore and ages long gone before, a great and
puissant King, of the Kings of the Persians, Sábúr by name, who was the
richest of all the Kings in store of wealth and dominion and surpassed
each and every in wit and wisdom. He was generous, open handed and
beneficent, and he gave to those who sought him and repelled not those
who resorted to him; and he comforted the broken-hearted and honourably
entreated those who fled to him for refuge. Moreover, he loved the poor
and was hospitable to strangers and did the oppressed justice upon the
oppressor. He had three daughters, like full moons of shining light or
flower-gardens blooming bright; and a son as he were the moon; and it
was his wont to keep two festivals in the twelvemonth, those of the
Nau-Roz, or New Year, and Mihrgán the Autumnal Equinox,[2] on which
occasions he threw open his palaces and gave largesse and made
proclamation of safety and security and promoted his chamberlains and
viceroys; and the people of his realm came in to him and saluted him and
gave him joy of the holy day, bringing him gifts and servants and
eunuchs. Now he loved science and geometry, and one festival-day as he
sat on his kingly throne there came in to him three wise men, cunning
artificers and past masters in all manner of craft and inventions,
skilled in making things curious and rare, such as confound the wit; and
versed in the knowledge of occult truths and perfect in mysteries and
subtleties. And they were of three different tongues and countries, the
first a Hindi or Indian,[3] the second a Roumi or Greek and the third a
Farsi or Persian. The Indian came forwards and, prostrating himself
before the King, wished him joy of the festival and laid before him a
present befitting his dignity; that is to say, a man of gold, set with
precious gems and jewels of price and hending in hand a golden trumpet.
When Sabur[4] saw this, he asked, “O sage, what is the virtue of this
figure?”; and the Indian answered, “O my lord, if this figure be set at
the gate of thy city, it will be a guardian over it; for, if an enemy
enter the place, it will blow this clarion against him and he will be
seized with a palsy and drop down dead.” Much the King marvelled at this
and cried, “By Allah, O sage, an this thy word be true, I will grant
thee thy wish and thy desire.” Then came forward the Greek and,
prostrating himself before the King, presented him with a basin of
silver, in whose midst was a peacock of gold, surrounded by
four-and-twenty chicks of the same metal. Sabur looked at them and
turning to the Greek, said to him, “O sage, what is the virtue of this
peacock?” “O my lord,” answered he, “as often as an hour of the day or
night passeth, it pecketh one of its young and crieth out and flappeth
its wings, till the four-and-twenty hours are accomplished; and when the
month cometh to an end, it will open its mouth and thou shalt see the
crescent therein.” And the King said, “An thou speak sooth, I will bring
thee to thy wish and thy desire.” Then came forward the Persian sage
and, prostrating himself before the King, presented him with a horse[5]
of the blackest ebony-wood inlaid with gold and jewels, and ready
harnessed with saddle, bridle and stirrups such as befit Kings; which
when Sabur saw, he marvelled with exceeding marvel and was confounded at
the beauty of its form and the ingenuity of its fashion. So he asked,
“What is the use of this horse of wood, and what is its virtue and what
the secret of its movement?”; and the Persian answered, “O my lord, the
virtue of this horse is that, if one mount him, it will carry him
whither he will and fare with its rider through the air and cover the
space of a year in a single day.” The King marvelled and was amazed at
these three wonders, following thus hard upon one another on the same
day, and turning to the sage, said to him, “By Allah the Omnipotent, and
our Lord the Beneficent, who created all creatures and feedeth them with
meat and drink, an thy speech be veritable and the virtue of thy
contrivance appear, I will assuredly give thee whatsoever thou lustest
for and will bring thee to thy desire and thy wish!”[6] Then he
entertained the sages three days, that he might make trial of their
gifts; after which they brought the figures before him and each took the
creature he had wroughten and showed him the mystery of its movement.
The trumpeter blew the trump; the peacock pecked its chicks and the
Persian sage mounted the ebony horse, whereupon it soared with him high
in air and descended again. When King Sabur saw all this, he was amazed
and perplexed and felt like to fly for joy and said to the three sages,
“Now I am certified of the truth of your words and it behoveth me to
quit me of my promise. Ask ye, therefore, what ye will, and I will give
you that same.” Now the report of the King’s daughters had reached the
sages, so they answered, “If the King be content with us and accept of
our gifts and allow us to prefer a request to him, we crave of him that
he give us his three daughters in marriage, that we may be his
sons-in-law; for that the stability of Kings may not be gainsaid.” Quoth
the King, “I grant you that which you wish and you desire,” and bade
summon the Kazi forthright, that he might marry each of the sages to one
of his daughters. Now it fortuned that the Princesses were behind a
curtain, looking on; and when they heard this, the youngest considered
her husband to be and behold, he was an old man,[7] an hundred years of
age, with hair frosted, forehead drooping, eyebrows mangy, ears slitten,
beard and mustachios stained and dyed; eyes red and goggle; cheeks
bleached and hollow; flabby nose like a brinjall, or egg-plant[8]; face
like a cobbler’s apron, teeth overlapping and lips like camel’s kidneys,
loose and pendulous; in brief a terror, a horror, a monster, for he was
of the folk of his time the unsightliest and of his age the
fright-fullest; sundry of his grinders had been knocked out and his
eye-teeth were like the tusks of the Jinni who frighteneth poultry in
hen-houses. Now the girl was the fairest and most graceful of her time,
more elegant than the gazelle however tender, than the gentlest zephyr
blander and brighter than the moon at her full; for amorous fray right
suitable; confounding in graceful sway the waving bough and outdoing in
swimming gait the pacing roe; in fine she was fairer and sweeter by far
than all her sisters. So, when she saw her suitor, she went to her
chamber and strewed dust on her head and tore her clothes and fell to
buffeting her face and weeping and wailing. Now the Prince, her brother,
Kamar al-Akmár, or the Moon of Moons hight, was then newly returned from
a journey and, hearing her weeping and crying came in to her (for he
loved her with fond affection, more than his other sisters) and asked
her, “What aileth thee? What hath befallen thee? Tell me and conceal
naught from me.” So she smote her breast and answered, “O my brother and
my dear one, I have nothing to hide. If the palace be straitened upon
thy father, I will go out; and if he be resolved upon a foul thing, I
will separate myself from him, though he consent not to make provision
for me; and my Lord will provide.” Quoth he, “Tell me what meaneth this
talk and what hath straitened thy breast and troubled thy temper.” “O my
brother and my dear one,” answered the Princess, “Know that my father
hath promised me in marriage to a wicked magician who brought him, as a
gift, a horse of black wood, and hath bewitched him with his craft and
his egromancy; but, as for me, I will none of him, and would, because of
him, I had never come into this world!” Her brother soothed her and
solaced her, then fared to his sire and said, “What be this wizard to
whom thou hast given my youngest sister in marriage, and what is this
present which he hath brought thee, so that thou hast killed[9] my
sister with chagrin? It is not right that this should be.” Now the
Persian was standing by and, when he heard the Prince’s words, he was
mortified and filled with fury and the King said, “O my son, an thou
sawest this horse, thy wit would be confounded and thou wouldst be
amated with amazement.” Then he bade the slaves bring the horse before
him and they did so; and, when the Prince saw it, it pleased him. So
(being an accomplished cavalier) he mounted it forthright and struck its
sides with the shovel-shaped stirrup-irons; but it stirred not and the
King said to the Sage, “Go show him its movement, that he also may help
thee to win thy wish.” Now the Persian bore the Prince a grudge because
he willed not he should have his sister; so he showed him the pin of
ascent on the right side of the horse and saying to him, “Trill this,”
left him. Thereupon the Prince trilled the pin and lo! the horse
forthwith soared with him high in ether, as it were a bird, and gave not
overflying till it disappeared from men’s espying, whereat the King was
troubled and perplexed about his case and said to the Persian, “O sage,
look how thou mayst make him descend.” But he replied, “O my lord, I can
do nothing, and thou wilt never see him again till Resurrection-day, for
he, of his ignorance and pride, asked me not of the pin of descent and I
forgot to acquaint him therewith.” When the King heard this, he was
enraged with sore rage; and bade bastinado the sorcerer and clap him in
jail, whilst he himself cast the crown from his head and beat his face
and smote his breast. Moreover, he shut the doors of his palaces and
gave himself up to weeping and keening, he and his wife and daughters
and all the folk of the city; and thus their joy was turned to annoy and
their gladness changed into sore affliction and sadness. Thus far
concerning them; but as regards the Prince, the horse gave not over
soaring with him till he drew near the sun, whereat he gave himself up
for lost and saw death in the skies, and was confounded at his case,
repenting him of having mounted the horse and saying to himself,
“Verily, this was a device of the Sage to destroy me on account of my
youngest sister; but there is no Majesty and there is no Might save in
Allah, the Glorious, the Great! I am lost without recourse; but I
wonder, did not he who made the ascent-pin make also a descent-pin?” Now
he was a man of wit and knowledge and intelligence; so he fell to
feeling all the parts of the horse, but saw nothing save a screw, like a
cock’s head, on its right shoulder and the like on the left, when quoth
he to himself, “I see no sign save these things like buttons.” Presently
he turned the right-hand pin, whereupon the horse flew heavenwards with
increased speed. So he left it and looking at the sinister shoulder and
finding another pin, he wound it up and immediately the steed’s upwards
motion slowed and ceased and it began to descend, little by little,
towards the face of the earth, while the rider became yet more cautious
and careful of his life.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.


       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Fifty-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Prince wound up the sinister screw, the steed’s upward motion slowed
and ceased, and it began to descend, little by little, towards the
earth while the rider became yet more cautious and careful of his
life. And when he saw this and knew the uses of the horse, his heart
was filled with joy and gladness and he thanked Almighty Allah for
that He had deigned deliver him from destruction. Then he began to
turn the horse’s head whithersoever he would, making it rise and
fall at pleasure, till he had gotten complete mastery over its every
movement. He ceased not to descend the whole of that day, for that
the steed’s ascending flight had borne him afar from the earth; and,
as he descended, he diverted himself with viewing the various cities
and countries over which he passed and which he knew not, never
having seen them in his life. Amongst the rest, he descried a city
ordered after the fairest fashion in the midst of a verdant and
riant land, rich in trees and streams, with gazelles pacing daintily
over the plains; whereat he fell a-musing and said to himself,
“Would I knew the name of yon town and in what land it is!” And he
took to circling about it and observing it right and left. By this
time, the day began to decline and the sun drew near to its downing;
and he said in his mind, “Verily I find no goodlier place to night
in than this city; so I will lodge here and early on the morrow I
will return to my kith and kin and my kingdom; and tell my father
and family what hath passed and acquaint him with what mine eyes
have seen.” Then he addressed himself to seeking a place wherein he
might safely bestow himself and his horse and where none should
descry him, and presently behold, he espied a-middle-most of the
city a palace rising high in upper air surrounded by a great wall
with lofty crenelles and battlements, guarded by forty black slaves,
clad in complete mail and armed with spears and swords, bows and
arrows. Quoth he, “This is a goodly place,” and turned the
descent-pin, whereupon the horse sank down with him like a weary
bird, and alighted gently on the terrace-roof of the palace. So the
Prince dismounted and ejaculating “Alhamdolillah”—praise be to
Allah[10]—he began to go round about the horse and examine it,
saying, “By Allah, he who fashioned thee with these perfections was
a cunning craftsman, and if the Almighty extend the term of my life
and restore me to my country and kinsfolk in safety and reunite me
with my father, I will assuredly bestow upon him all manner bounties
and benefit him with the utmost beneficence.” By this time night had
overtaken him and he sat on the roof till he was assured that all in
the palace slept; and indeed hunger and thirst were sore upon him,
for that he had not tasted food nor drunk water since he parted from
his sire. So he said within himself, “Surely the like of this palace
will not lack of victual;” and, leaving the horse above, went down
in search of somewhat to eat. Presently, he came to a staircase and
descending it to the bottom, found himself in a court paved with
white marble and alabaster, which shone in the light of the moon. He
marvelled at the place and the goodliness of its fashion, but sensed
no sound of speaker and saw no living soul and stood in perplexed
surprise, looking right and left and knowing not whither he should
wend. Then said he to himself, “I may not do better than return to
where I left my horse and pass the night by it; and as soon as day
shall dawn I will mount and ride away.”——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Three Hundred and Fifty-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that quoth the king’s
son to himself, “I may not do better than pass the night by my horse;
and as soon as day shall dawn I will mount and ride away.” However, as
he tarried talking to himself, he espied a light within the palace, and
making towards it, found that it came from a candle that stood before a
door of the Harim, at the head of a sleeping eunuch, as he were one of
the Ifrits of Solomon or a tribesman of the Jinn, longer than lumber and
broader than a bench. He lay before the door, with the pommel of his
sword gleaming in the flame of the candle, and at his head was a bag of
leather[11] hanging from a column of granite. When the Prince saw this,
he was affrighted and said, “I crave help from Allah the Supreme! O mine
Holy One, even as Thou hast already delivered me from destruction, so
vouchsafe me strength to quit myself of the adventure of this palace!”
So saying, he put out his hand to the budget and taking it, carried it
aside and opened it and found in it food of the best. He ate his fill
and refreshed himself and drank water, after which he hung up the
provision-bag in its place and drawing the eunuch’s sword from its
sheath, took it, whilst the slave slept on, knowing not whence destiny
should come to him. Then the Prince fared forwards into the palace and
ceased not till he came to a second door, with a curtain drawn before
it; so he raised the curtain and behold, on entering he saw a couch of
the whitest ivory, inlaid with pearls and jacinths and jewels, and four
slave-girls sleeping about it. He went up to the couch, to see what was
thereon, and found a young lady lying asleep, chemised with her hair[12]
as she were the full moon rising[13] over the Eastern horizon, with
flower-white brow and shining hair-parting and cheeks like blood-red
anemones and dainty moles thereon. He was amazed at her as she lay in
her beauty and loveliness, her symmetry and grace, and he recked no more
of death. So he went up to her, trembling in every nerve and, shuddering
with pleasure, kissed her on the right cheek; whereupon she awoke
forthright and opened her eyes, and seeing the Prince standing at her
head, said to him, “Who art thou and whence comest thou?” Quoth he, “I
am thy slave and thy lover.” Asked she, “And who brought thee hither?”
and he answered, “My Lord and my fortune.” Then said Shams al-Nahár[14]
(for such was her name), “Haply thou art he who demanded me yesterday of
my father in marriage and he rejected thee, pretending that thou wast
foul of favour. By Allah, my sire lied in his throat when he spoke this
thing, for thou art not other than beautiful.” Now the son of the King
of Hind had sought her in marriage, but her father had rejected him, for
that he was ugly and uncouth, and she thought the Prince was he. So,
when she saw his beauty and grace (for indeed he was like the radiant
moon) the syntheism[15] of love gat hold of her heart as it were a
flaming fire, and they fell to talk and converse. Suddenly, her
waiting-women awoke and, seeing the Prince with their mistress, said to
her, “Oh my lady, who is this with thee?” Quoth she, “I know not; I
found him sitting by me, when I woke up: haply ‘tis he who seeketh me in
marriage of my sire.” Quoth they, “O my lady, by Allah the All-Father,
this is not he who seeketh thee in marriage, for he is hideous and this
man is handsome and of high degree. Indeed, the other is not fit to be
his servant.”[16] Then the handmaidens went out to the eunuch, and
finding him slumbering awoke him, and he started up in alarm. Said they,
“How happeneth it that thou art on guard at the palace and yet men come
in to us, whilst we are asleep?” When the black heard this, he sprang in
haste to his sword, but found it not; and fear took him and trembling.
Then he went in, confounded, to his mistress and seeing the Prince
sitting at talk with her, said to him, “O my lord, art thou man or
Jinni?” Replied the Prince, “Woe to thee, O unluckiest of slaves: how
darest thou even the sons of the royal Chosroes[17] with one of the
unbelieving Satans?” And he was as a raging lion. Then he took the sword
in his hand and said to the slave, “I am the King’s son-in-law, and he
hath married me to his daughter and bidden me go in to her.” And when
the eunuch heard these words he replied, “O my lord, if thou be indeed
of kind a man as thou avouchest, she is fit for none but for thee, and
thou art worthier of her than any other.” Thereupon the eunuch ran to
the King, shrieking loud and rending his raiment and heaving dust upon
his head; and when the King heard his outcry, he said to him, “What hath
befallen thee?: speak quickly and be brief; for thou hast fluttered my
heart.” Answered the eunuch, “O King, come to thy daughter’s succour;
for a devil of the Jinn, in the likeness of a King’s son, hath got
possession of her; so up and at him!” When the King heard this, he
thought to kill him and said, “How camest thou to be careless of my
daughter and let this demon come at her?” Then he betook himself to the
Princess’s palace, where he found her slave-women standing to await him
and asked them, “What is come to my daughter?” “O King,” answered they,
“slumber overcame us and, when we awoke, we found a young man sitting
upon her couch in talk with her, as he were the full moon; never saw we
aught fairer of favour than he. So we questioned him of his case and he
declared that thou hadst given him thy daughter in marriage. More than
this we know not, nor do we know if he be a man or a Jinni; but he is
modest and well bred, and doth nothing unseemly or which leadeth to
disgrace.” Now when the King heard these words, his wrath cooled and he
raised the curtain little by little and looking in, saw sitting at talk
with his daughter a Prince of the goodliest with a face like the full
moon for sheen. At this sight he could not contain himself, of his
jealousy for his daughter’s honour; and, putting aside the curtain,
rushed in upon them drawn sword in hand like a furious Ghul. Now when
the Prince saw him he asked the Princess, “Is this thy sire?”; and she
answered, “Yes.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Three Hundred and Sixtieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Prince
saw the King rushing in upon them, drawn sword in hand, like a furious
Ghul he asked the Princess, “Is this thy sire?”; and she answered,
“Yes.” Whereupon he sprang to his feet and, seizing his sword, cried out
at the King with so terrible a cry that he was confounded. Then the
youth would have fallen on him with the sword; but the King seeing that
the Prince was doughtier than he, sheathed his scymitar and stood till
the young man came up to him, when he accosted him courteously and said
to him, “O youth, art thou a man or a Jinni?” Quoth the Prince, “Did I
not respect thy right as mine host and thy daughter’s honour, I would
spill thy blood! How darest thou fellow me with devils, me that am a
Prince of the sons of the royal Chosroes who, had they wished to take
thy kingdom, could shake thee like an earthquake from thy glory and thy
dominions and spoil thee of all thy possessions?” Now when the King
heard his words, he was confounded with awe and bodily fear of him and
rejoined, “If thou indeed be of the sons of the Kings, as thou
pretendest, how cometh it that thou enterest my palace without my
permission, and smirchest mine honour, making thy way to my daughter and
feigning that thou art her husband and claiming that I have given her to
thee to wife, I that have slain Kings and King’s sons, who sought her of
me in marriage? And now who shall save thee from my might and majesty
when, if I cried out to my slaves and servants and bade them put thee to
the vilest of deaths they would slay thee forthright? Who shall deliver
thee out of my hand?” When the Prince heard this speech of the King he
answered, “Verily, I wonder at thee and at the shortness and denseness
of thy wit! Say me, canst covet for thy daughter a mate comelier than
myself, and hast ever seen a stouter hearted man or one better fitted
for a Sultan or a more glorious in rank and dominion than I?” Rejoined
the King, “Nay, by Allah! but I would have had thee, O youth, act after
the custom of Kings and demand her from me to wife before witnesses,
that I might have married her to thee publicly; and now, even were I to
marry her to thee privily, yet hast thou dishonoured me in her person.”
Rejoined the Prince, “Thou sayest sooth, O King, but if thou summon thy
slaves and thy soldiers and they fall upon me and slay me, as thou
pretendest, thou wouldst but publish thine own disgrace, and the folk
would be divided between belief in thee and disbelief in thee.
Wherefore, O King, thou wilt do well, meseemeth, to turn from this
thought to that which I shall counsel thee.” Quoth the King, “Let me
hear what thou hast to advise;” and quoth the Prince, “What I have to
propose to thee is this: either do thou meet me in combat singular, I
and thou; and he who slayeth his adversary shall be held the worthier
and having a better title to the kingdom; or else, let me be this night
and, whenas dawns the morn, draw out against me thy horsemen and footmen
and servants; but first tell me their number.” Said the King, “They are
forty thousand horse, besides my own slaves and their followers,[18] who
are the like of them in number.” Thereupon said the Prince, “When the
day shall break, do thou array them against me and say to them”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Three Hundred and Sixty-first Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that quoth the
Prince, “When day shall break, do thou array them against me and say to
them:—This man is a suitor to me for my daughter’s hand, on condition
that he shall do battle single-handed against you all; for he pretendeth
that he will overcome you and put you to the rout, and indeed that ye
cannot prevail against him. After which, leave me to do battle with
them: if they slay me, then is thy secret the surer guarded and thine
honour the better warded; and if I overcome them and see their backs,
then is it the like of me a King should covet to his son-in-law.” So the
King approved of his opinion and accepted his proposition, despite his
awe at the boldness of his speech and amaze at the pretensions of the
Prince to meet in fight his whole host, such as he had described it to
him, being at heart assured that he would perish in the fray and so he
should be quit of him and freed from the fear of dishonour. Thereupon he
called the eunuch and bade him go to his Wazir without stay and delay
and command him to assemble the whole of the army and cause them don
their arms and armour and mount their steeds. So the eunuch carried the
King’s order to the Minister, who straightway summoned the Captains of
the host and the Lords of the realm and bade them don their harness of
derring-do and mount horse and sally forth in battle array. Such was
their case; but as regards the King, he sat a long while conversing with
the young Prince, being pleased with his wise speech and good sense and
fine breeding. And when it was daybreak he returned to his palace and,
seating himself on his throne, commanded his merry men to mount and bade
them saddle one of the best of the royal steeds with handsome selle and
housings and trappings and bring it to the Prince. But the youth said,
“O King, I will not mount horse, till I come in view of the troops and
review them.” “Be it as thou wilt,” replied the King. Then the two
repaired to the parade-ground, where the troops were drawn up, and the
young Prince looked upon them and noted their great number; after which
the King cried out to them, saying, “Ho, all ye men, there is come to me
a youth who seeketh my daughter in marriage; and in very sooth never
have I seen a goodlier than he; no, nor a stouter of heart nor a
doughtier of arm, for he pretendeth that he can overcome you,
single-handed, and force you to flight and that, were ye an hundred
thousand in number, yet for him would ye be but few. Now when he
chargeth down on you, do ye receive him upon point of pike and sharp of
sabre; for, indeed, he hath undertaken a mighty matter.” Then quoth the
King to the Prince, “Up, O my son, and do thy devoir on them.” Answered
he, “O King, thou dealest not justly and fairly by me: how shall I go
forth against them, seeing that I am afoot and the men be mounted?” The
King retorted, “I bade thee mount, and thou refusedst; but choose thou
which of my horses thou wilt.” Then he said, “Not one of thy horses
pleaseth me, and I will ride none but that on which I came.” Asked the
King, “And where is thy horse?” “Atop of thy palace.” “In what part of
my palace?” “On the roof.” Now when the King heard these words, he
cried, “Out on thee! this is the first sign thou hast given of madness.
How can the horse be on the roof? But we shall at once see if thou speak
truth or lies.” Then he turned to one of his chief officers and said to
him, “Go to my palace and bring me what thou findest on the roof.” So
all the people marvelled at the young Prince’s words, saying one to
other, “How can a horse come down the steps from the roof? Verily this
is a thing whose like we never heard.” In the mean time the King’s
messenger repaired to the palace and mounting to the roof, found the
horse standing there and never had he looked on a handsomer; but when he
drew near and examined it, he saw that it was made of ebony and ivory.
Now the officer was accompanied by other high officers, who also looked
on and they laughed to one another, saying, “Was it of the like of this
horse that the youth spake? We cannot deem him other than mad; however,
we shall soon see the truth of his case.”——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Sixty-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the high
officials looked upon the horse, they laughed one to other and said,
“Was it of the like of this horse that the youth spake? We cannot deem
him other than mad; however, we shall soon see the truth of his case.
Peradventure herein is some mighty matter, and he is a man of high
degree.” Then they lifted up the horse bodily and, carrying it to the
King, set it down before him, and all the lieges flocked round to look
at it, marvelling at the beauty of its proportions and the richness of
its saddle and bridle. The King also admired it and wondered at it with
extreme wonder; and he asked the Prince, “O youth, is this thy horse?”
He answered, “Yes, O King, this is my horse, and thou shalt soon see the
marvel it showeth.” Rejoined the King, “Then take and mount it,” and the
Prince retorted, “I will not mount till the troops withdraw afar from
it.” So the King bade them retire a bowshot from the horse; whereupon
quoth its owner, “O King, see thou; I am about to mount my horse and
charge upon thy host and scatter them right and left and split their
hearts asunder.” Said the King, “Do as thou wilt; and spare not their
lives, for they will not spare thine.” Then the Prince mounted, whilst
the troops ranged themselves in ranks before him, and one said to
another, “When the youth cometh between the ranks, we will take him on
the points of our pikes and the sharps of our sabres.” Quoth another,
“By Allah, this is a mere misfortune: how shall we slay a youth so
comely of face and shapely of form?” And a third continued, “Ye will
have hard work to get the better of him; for the youth had not done
this, but for what he knew of his own prowess and pre-eminence of
valour.” Meanwhile, having settled himself in his saddle, the Prince
turned the pin of ascent; whilst all eyes were strained to see what he
would do, whereupon the horse began to heave and rock and sway to and
fro and make the strangest of movements steed ever made, till its belly
was filled with air and it took flight with its rider and soared high
into the sky. When the King saw this, he cried out to his men, saying,
“Woe to you! catch him, catch him, ere he ‘scape you!” But his Wazirs
and Viceroys said to him, “O King, can a man overtake the flying bird?
This is surely none but some mighty magician or Mar¡d of the Jinn or
devil, and Allah save thee from him. So praise thou the Almighty for
deliverance of thee and of all thy host from his hand.” Then the King
returned to his palace after seeing the feat of the Prince and, going in
to his daughter, acquainted her with what had befallen them both on the
parade-ground. He found her grievously afflicted for the Prince and
bewailing her separation from him; wherefore she fell sick with violent
sickness and took to her pillow. Now when her father saw her on this
wise, he pressed her to his breast and kissing her between the eyes,
said to her, “O my daughter, praise Allah Almighty and thank Him for
that He hath delivered us from this crafty enchanter, this villain, this
low fellow, this thief who thought only of seducing thee!” And he
repeated to her the story of the Prince and how he had disappeared in
the firmament; and he abused him and cursed him knowing not how dearly
his daughter loved him. But she paid no heed to his words and did but
redouble in her tears and wails, saying to herself, “By Allah, I will
neither eat meat nor drain drink, till Allah reunite me with him!” Her
father was greatly concerned for her case and mourned much over her
plight; but, for all he could do to soothe her, love-longing only
increased on her.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Three Hundred and Sixty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the King mourned
much over his daughter’s plight but, for all he could do to soothe her,
love-longing only increased on her. Thus far concerning the King and
Princess Shams al-Nahár; but as regards Prince Kamar al-Akmar, when he
had risen high in air, he turned his horse’s head towards his native
land, and being alone mused upon the beauty of the Princess and her
loveliness. Now he had enquired of the King’s people the name of the
city and of its King and his daughter; and men had told him that it was
the city of Sana’á.[19] So he journeyed with all speed, till he drew
near his father’s capital and, making an airy circuit about the city,
alighted on the roof of the King’s palace, where he left his horse,
whilst he descended into the palace and seeing its threshold strewn with
ashes, thought that one of his family was dead. Then he entered, as of
wont, and found his father and mother and sisters clad in mourning
raiment of black, all pale of faces and lean of frames. When his sire
descried him and was assured that it was indeed his son, he cried out
with a great cry and fell down in a fit, but after a time coming to
himself, threw himself upon him and embraced him, clipping him to his
bosom and rejoicing in him with exceeding joy and extreme gladness. His
mother and sisters heard this; so they came in and seeing the Prince,
fell upon him, kissing him and weeping, and joying with exceeding
joyance. Then they questioned him of his case; so he told them all that
had past from first to last, and his father said to him, “Praised be
Allah for thy safety, O coolth of my eyes and core of my heart!” Then
the King bade hold high festival, and the glad tidings flew through the
city. So they beat drums and cymbals and, doffing the weed of mourning,
they donned the gay garb of gladness and decorated the streets and
markets; whilst the folk vied with one another who should be the first
to give the King joy, and the King proclaimed a general pardon and
opening the prisons, released those who were therein prisoned. Moreover,
he made banquets for the people, with great abundance of eating and
drinking, for seven days and nights and all creatures were gladsomest;
and he took horse with his son and rode out with him, that the folk
might see him and rejoice. After awhile the Prince asked about the maker
of the horse, saying, “O my father, what hath fortune done with him?”;
and the King answered, “Allah never bless him nor the hour wherein I set
eyes on him! For he was the cause of thy separation from us, O my son,
and he hath lain in gaol since the day of thy disappearance.” Then the
King bade release him from prison and, sending for him, invested him in
a dress of satisfaction and entreated him with the utmost favour and
munificence, save that he would not give him his daughter to wife;
whereat the Sage raged with sore rage and repented of that which he had
done, knowing that the Prince had secured the secret of the steed and
the manner of its motion. Moreover, the King said to his son, “I reck
thou wilt do well not to go near the horse henceforth and more
especially not to mount it after this day; for thou knowest not its
properties, and belike thou art in error about it.” Now the Prince had
told his father of his adventure with the King of Sana’a and his
daughter and he said, “Had the King intended to kill thee, he had done
so; but thine hour was not yet come.” When the rejoicings were at an
end, the people returned to their places and the King and his son to the
palace, where they sat down and fell to eating and drinking and making
merry. Now the King had a handsome handmaiden who was skilled in playing
the lute; so she took it and began to sweep the strings and sing thereto
before the King and his son of separation of lovers, and she chanted the
following verses:—

 Deem not that absence breeds in me aught of forgetfulness; ✿ What should
    remember I did you fro’ my remembrance wane?
 Time dies but never dies the fondest love for you we bear; ✿ And in your
    love I’ll die and in your love I’ll arise again.[20]

When the Prince heard these verses, the fires of longing flamed up in
his heart and pine and passion redoubled upon him. Grief and regret were
sore upon him and his bowels yearned in him for love of the King’s
daughter of Sana’a; so he rose forthright and, escaping his father’s
notice, went forth the palace to the horse and mounting it, turned the
pin of ascent, whereupon birdlike it flew with him high in air and
soared towards the upper regions of the sky. In early morning his father
missed him and, going up to the pinnacle of the palace, in great
concern, saw his son rising into the firmament; whereat he was sore
afflicted and repented in all penitence that he had not taken the horse
and hidden it; and he said to himself, “By Allah, if but my son return
to me, I will destroy the horse, that my heart may be at rest concerning
my son.” And he fell again to weeping and bewailing himself——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Sixty-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King that the King again fell
to weeping and bewailing himself for his son. Such was his case; but as
regards the Prince, he ceased not flying on through air till he came to
the city of Sana’a and alighted on the roof as before. Then he crept
down stealthily and, finding the eunuch asleep, as of wont, raised the
curtain and went on little by little, till he came to the door of the
Princess’s alcove[21]-chamber and stopped to listen; when lo! he heard
her shedding plenteous tears and reciting verses, whilst her women slept
round her. Presently, overhearing her weeping and wailing quoth they, “O
our mistress, why wilt thou mourn for one who mourneth not for thee?”
Quoth she, “O ye little of wit, is he for whom I mourn of those who
forget or who are forgotten?” And she fell again to wailing and weeping,
till sleep overcame her. Hereat the Prince’s heart melted for her and
his gall-bladder was like to burst, so he entered and, seeing her lying
asleep without covering,[22] touched her with his hand; whereupon she
opened her eyes and espied him standing by her. Said he, “Why all this
crying and mourning?” And when she knew him, she threw herself upon him,
and took him around the neck and kissed him and answered, “For thy sake
and because of my separation from thee.” Said he, “O my lady, I have
been made desolate by thee all this long time!” But she replied, “‘Tis
thou who hast desolated _me_; and hadst thou tarried longer, I had
surely died!” Rejoined he, “O my lady, what thinkest thou of my case
with thy father and how he dealt with me? Were it not for my love of
thee, O temptation and seduction of the Three Worlds, I had certainly
slain him and made him a warning to all beholders; but, even as I love
thee, so I love him for thy sake.” Quoth she, “How couldst thou leave
me: can my life be sweet to me after thee?” Quoth he, “Let what hath
happened suffice: I am now hungry, and thirsty.” So she bade her maidens
make ready meat and drink, and they sat eating and drinking and
conversing till night was well nigh ended; and when day broke he rose to
take leave of her and depart, ere the eunuch should awake. Shams
al-Nahar asked him, “Whither goest thou?”; and he answered, “To my
father’s house, and I plight thee my troth that I will come to thee once
in every week.” But she wept and said, “I conjure thee, by Allah the
Almighty, take me with thee whereso thou wendest and make me not taste
anew the bitter-gourd[23] of separation from thee.” Quoth he, “Wilt thou
indeed go with me?” and quoth she, “Yes.” “Then,” said he, “arise that
we depart.” So she rose forthright and going to a chest, arrayed herself
in what was richest and dearest to her of her trinkets of gold and
jewels of price, and she fared forth her handmaids recking naught. So he
carried her up to the roof of the palace and, mounting the ebony horse,
took her up behind him and made her fast to himself, binding her with
strong bonds; after which he turned the shoulder-pin of ascent, and the
horse rose with him high in air. When her slave-women saw this, they
shrieked aloud and told her father and mother, who in hot haste ran to
the palace-roof and looking up, saw the magical horse flying away with
the Prince and Princess. At this the King was troubled with
ever-increasing trouble and cried out, saying, “O King’s son, I conjure
thee, by Allah, have ruth on me and my wife and bereave us not of our
daughter!” The Prince made him no reply; but, thinking in himself that
the maiden repented of leaving father and mother, asked her, “O
ravishment of the age, say me, wilt thou that I restore thee to thy
mother and father?”: whereupon she answered, “By Allah, O my lord, that
is not my desire: my only wish is to be with thee, wherever thou art;
for I am distracted by the love of thee from all else, even from my
father and mother.” Hearing these words the Prince joyed with great joy,
and made the horse fly and fare softly with them, so as not to disquiet
her; nor did they stay their flight till they came in sight of a green
meadow, wherein was a spring of running water. Here they alighted and
ate and drank; after which the Prince took horse again and set her
behind him, binding her in his fear for her safety; after which they
fared on till they came in sight of his father’s capital. At this, the
Prince was filled with joy and bethought himself to show his beloved the
seat of his dominion and his father’s power and dignity and give her to
know that it was greater than that of her sire. So he set her down in
one of his father’s gardens without the city where his parent was wont
to take his pleasure; and, carrying her into a domed summer-house
prepared there for the King, left the ebony horse at the door and
charged the damsel keep watch over it, saying, “Sit here, till my
messenger come to thee; for I go now to my father, to make ready a
palace for thee and show thee my royal estate.” She was delighted when
she heard these words and said to him, “Do as thou wilt;”——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Three Hundred and Sixty-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the maiden was
delighted when she heard these words and said to him, “Do as thou wilt;”
for she thereby understood that she should not enter the city but with
due honour and worship, as became her rank. Then the Prince left her and
betook himself to the palace of the King his father, who rejoiced in his
return and met him and welcomed him; and the Prince said to him, “Know
that I have brought with me the King’s daughter of whom I told thee; and
have left her without the city in such a garden and come to tell thee,
that thou mayst make ready the procession of estate and go forth to meet
her and show her thy royal dignity and troops and guards.” Answered the
King, “With joy and gladness”; and straightway bade decorate the town
with the goodliest adornment. Then he took horse and rode out in all
magnificence and majesty, he and his host, high officers and household,
with drums and kettledrums, fifes and clarions and all manner
instruments; whilst the Prince drew forth of his treasuries jewellery
and apparel and what else of the things which Kings hoard and made a
rare display of wealth and splendour: moreover he got ready for the
Princess a canopied litter of brocades, green, red and yellow, wherein
he set Indian and Greek and Abyssinian slave-girls. Then he left the
litter and those who were therein and preceded them to the pavilion
where he had set her down; and searched but found naught, neither
Princess nor horse. When he saw this, he beat his face and rent his
raiment and began to wander round about the garden, as he had lost his
wits; after which he came to his senses and said to himself, “How could
she have come at the secret of this horse, seeing I told her nothing of
it? Maybe the Persian sage who made the horse hath chanced upon her and
stolen her away, in revenge for my father’s treatment of him.” Then he
sought the guardians of the garden and asked them if they had seen any
pass the precincts; and said, “Hath any one come in here? Tell me the
truth and the whole truth or I will at once strike off your heads.” They
were terrified by his threats; but they answered with one voice, “We
have seen no man enter save the Persian sage, who came to gather healing
herbs.” So the Prince was certified that it was indeed he that had taken
away the maiden——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Three Hundred and Sixty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Prince
heard their answer, he was certified that the Sage had taken away the
maiden and abode confounded and perplexed concerning his case. And he
was abashed before the folk and, turning to his sire, told him what had
happened and said to him, “Take the troops and march them back to the
city. As for me, I will never return till I have cleared up this
affair.” When the King heard this, he wept and beat his breast and said
to him, “O my son, calm thy choler and master thy chagrin and come home
with us and look what King’s daughter thou wouldst fain have, that I may
marry thee to her.” But the Prince paid no heed to his words and
farewelling him departed, whilst the King returned to the city and their
joy was changed into sore annoy. Now, as Destiny issued her decree, when
the Prince left the Princess in the garden-house and betook himself to
his father’s palace, for the ordering of his affair, the Persian entered
the garden to pluck certain simples and, scenting the sweet savour of
musk and perfumes that exhaled from the Princess and impregnated the
whole place, followed it till he came to the pavilion and saw standing
at the door the horse which he had made with his own hands. His heart
was filled with joy and gladness, for he had bemourned its loss much
since it had gone out of his hand: so he went up to it and, examining
its every part, found it whole and sound; whereupon he was about to
mount and ride away, when he bethought himself and said, “Needs must I
first look what the Prince hath brought and left here with the horse.”
So he entered the pavilion and, seeing the Princess sitting there, as
she were the sun shining sheen in the sky serene, knew her at the first
glance to be some high-born lady and doubted not but the Prince had
brought her thither on the horse and left her in the pavilion, whilst he
went to the city, to make ready for her entry in state procession with
all splendour. Then he went up to her and kissed the earth between her
hands, whereupon she raised her eyes to him and, finding him exceedingly
foul of face and favour, asked, “Who art thou?”; and he answered, “O my
lady, I am a messenger sent by the Prince who hath bidden me bring thee
to another pleasance nearer the city; for that my lady the Queen cannot
walk so far and is unwilling, of her joy in thee, that another should
forestall her with thee.” Quoth she, “Where is the Prince?”; and quoth
the Persian, “He is in the city, with his sire and forthwith he shall
come for thee in great state.” Said she, “O thou! say me, could he find
none handsomer to send to me?”; whereat loud laughed the Sage and said,
“Yea verily, he hath not a Mameluke as ugly as I am; but, O my lady, let
not the ill-favour of my face and the foulness of my form deceive thee.
Hadst thou profited of me as hath the Prince, verily thou wouldst praise
my affair. Indeed, he chose me as his messenger to thee, because of my
uncomeliness and loathsomeness in his jealous love of thee: else hath he
Mamelukes and negro slaves, pages, eunuchs and attendants out of number,
each goodlier than other.” Whenas she heard this, it commended itself to
her reason and she believed him; so she rose forthright——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Sixty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Persian
sage acquainted the Princess with the case of the King’s son, she
believed him; so she rose forthright; and, putting her hand in his,
said, “O my father, what hast thou brought me to ride?” He replied, “O
my lady, thou shalt ride the horse thou camest on;” and she, “I cannot
ride it by myself.” Whereupon he smiled and knew that he was her master
and said, “I will ride with thee myself.” So he mounted and, taking her
up behind him bound her to himself with firm bonds, while she knew not
what he would with her. Then he turned the ascent-pin, whereupon the
belly of the horse became full of wind and it swayed to and fro like a
wave of the sea, and rose with them high in air nor slackened in its
flight, till it was out of sight of the city. Now when Shams al-Nahar
saw this, she asked him, “Ho thou! what is become of that thou toldest
me of my Prince, making me believe that he sent thee to me?” Answered
the Persian, “Allah damn the Prince! he is a mean and skin-flint knave.”
She cried, “Woe to thee! How darest thou disobey thy lord’s
commandment?” Whereto the Persian replied, “He is no lord of mine:
knowest thou who I am?” Rejoined the Princess, “I know nothing of thee
save what thou toldest me;” and retorted he, “What I told thee was a
trick of mine against thee and the King’s son: I have long lamented the
loss of this horse which is under us; for I constructed it and made
myself master of it. But now I have gotten firm hold of it and of thee
too, and I will burn his heart even as he hath burnt mine; nor shall he
ever have the horse again; no, never! So be of good cheer and keep thine
eyes cool and clear; for I can be of more use to thee than he; and I am
generous as I am wealthy; my servants and slaves shall obey thee as
their mistress; I will robe thee in finest raiment and thine every wish
shall be at thy will.” When she heard this, she buffeted her face and
cried out, saying, “Ah, well-away! I have not won my beloved and I have
lost my father and mother!” And she wept bitter tears over what had
befallen her, whilst the Sage fared on with her, without ceasing, till
he came to the land of the Greeks[24] and alighted in a verdant mead,
abounding in streams and trees. Now this meadow lay near a city wherein
was a King of high puissance, and it chanced that he went forth that day
to hunt and divert himself. As he passed by the meadow, he saw the
Persian standing there, with the damsel and the horse by his side; and,
before the Sage was ware, the King’s slaves fell upon him and carried
him and the lady and the horse to their master who, noting the foulness
of the man’s favour and his loathsomeness and the beauty of the girl and
her loveliness, said, “O my lady, what kin is this oldster to thee?” The
Persian made haste to reply, saying, “She is my wife and the daughter of
my father’s brother.” But the lady at once gave him the lie and said, “O
King, by Allah, I know him not, nor is he my husband; nay, he is a
wicked magician who hath stolen me away by force and fraud.” Thereupon
the King bade bastinado the Persian and they beat him till he was
well-nigh dead; after which the King commanded to carry him to the city
and cast him into jail; and, taking from him the damsel and the ebony
horse (though he knew not its properties nor the secret of its motion),
set the girl in his serraglio and the horse amongst his hoards. Such was
the case with the Sage and the lady; but as regards Prince Kamar
al-Akmar, he garbed himself in travelling gear and taking what he needed
of money, set out tracking their trail in very sorry plight; and
journeyed from country to country and city to city seeking the Princess
and enquiring after the ebony horse, whilst all who heard him marvelled
at him and deemed his talk extravagant. Thus he continued doing a long
while; but, for all his enquiry and quest, he could hit on no news of
her. At last he came to her father’s city of Sana’a and there asked for
her, but could get no tidings of her and found her father mourning her
loss. So he turned back and made for the land of the Greeks, continuing
to enquire concerning the twain as he went——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.


       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Sixty-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the King’s son
made for the land of the Greeks, continuing to enquire concerning the
two as he went along, till, as chance would have it, he alighted at a
certain Khan and saw a company of merchants sitting at talk. So he sat
down near them and heard one say, “O my friends, I lately witnessed a
wonder of wonders.” They asked, “What was that?” and he answered, “I was
visiting such a district in such a city (naming the city wherein was the
Princess), and I heard its people chatting of a strange thing which had
lately befallen. It was that their King went out one day hunting and
coursing with a company of his courtiers and the lords of his realm;
and, issuing from the city, they came to a green meadow where they
espied an old man standing, with a woman sitting hard by a horse of
ebony. The man was foulest-foul of face and loathly of form, but the
woman was a marvel of beauty and loveliness and elegance and perfect
grace; and as for the wooden horse, it was a miracle, never saw eyes
aught goodlier than it nor more gracious than its make.” Asked the
others, “And what did the King with them?”; and the merchant answered,
“As for the man the King seized him and questioned him of the damsel and
he pretended that she was his wife and the daughter of his paternal
uncle; but she gave him the lie forthright and declared that he was a
sorcerer and a villain. So the King took her from the old man and bade
beat him and cast him into the trunk-house. As for the ebony horse, I
know not what became of it.” When the Prince heard these words, he drew
near to the merchant and began questioning him discreetly and
courteously touching the name of the city and of its King; which when he
knew, he passed the night full of joy. And as soon as dawned the day he
set out and travelled sans surcease till he reached that city; but, when
he would have entered, the gatekeepers laid hands on him, that they
might bring him before the King to question him of his condition and the
craft in which he skilled and the cause of his coming thither—such being
the usage and custom of their ruler. Now it was supper-time when he
entered the city, and it was then impossible to go in to the King or
take counsel with him respecting the stranger. So the guards carried him
to the jail, thinking to lay him by the heels there for the night; but,
when the warders saw his beauty and loveliness, they could not find it
in their hearts to imprison him: they made him sit with them without the
walls; and, when food came to them, he ate with them what sufficed him.
As soon as they had made an end of eating, they turned to the Prince and
said, “What countryman art thou?” “I come from Fars,” answered he, “the
land of the Chosroës.” When they heard this they laughed and one of them
said, “O Chosroan,[25] I have heard the talk of men and their histories
and I have looked into their conditions; but never saw I or heard I a
bigger liar than the Chosroan which is with us in the jail.” Quoth
another, “And never did I see aught fouler than his favour or more
hideous than his visnomy.” Asked the Prince, “What have ye seen of his
lying?”; and they answered, “He pretendeth that he is one of the wise!
Now the King came upon him, as he went a-hunting, and found with him a
most beautiful woman and a horse of the blackest ebony, never saw I a
handsomer. As for the damsel, she is with the King, who is enamoured of
her and would fain marry her; but she is mad, and were this man a leach
as he claimeth to be, he would have healed her, for the King doth his
utmost to discover a cure for her case and a remedy for her disease, and
this whole year past hath he spent treasures upon physicians and
astrologers, on her account; but none can avail to cure her. As for the
horse, it is in the royal hoard-house, and the ugly man is here with us
in prison; and as soon as night falleth, he weepeth and bemoaneth
himself and will not let us sleep.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Three Hundred and Sixty-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the warders
had recounted the case of the Persian egromancer they held in prison and
his weeping and wailing, the Prince at once devised a device whereby he
might compass his desire; and presently the guards of the gate, being
minded to sleep, led him into the jail and locked the door. So he
overheard the Persian weeping and bemoaning himself, in his own tongue,
and saying, “Alack, and alas for my sin, that I sinned against myself
and against the King’s son, in that which I did with the damsel; for I
neither left her nor won my will of her! All this cometh of my lack of
sense, in that I sought for myself that which I deserved not and which
befitted not the like of me; for whoso seeketh what suiteth him not at
all, falleth with the like of my fall.” Now when the King’s son heard
this, he accosted him in Persian, saying, “How long will this weeping
and wailing last? Say me, thinkest thou that hath befallen thee that
which never befel other than thou?” Now when the Persian heard this, he
made friends with him and began to complain to him of his case and
misfortunes. And as soon as the morning morrowed, the warders took the
Prince and carried him before their King, informing him that he had
entered the city on the previous night, at a time when audience was
impossible. Quoth the King to the Prince, “Whence comest thou and what
is thy name and trade and why hast thou travelled hither?” He replied,
“As to my name I am called in Persian Harjah;[26] as to my country I
come from the land of Fars; and I am of the men of art and especially of
the art of medicine and healing the sick and those whom the Jinns drive
mad. For this I go round about all countries and cities, to profit by
adding knowledge to my knowledge, and whenever I see a patient I heal
him and this is my craft.”[27] Now when the King heard this, he rejoiced
with exceeding joy and said, “O excellent Sage, thou hast indeed come to
us at a time when we need thee.” Then he acquainted him with the case of
the Princess, adding, “If thou cure her and recover her from her
madness, thou shalt have of me everything thou seekest.” Replied the
Prince, “Allah save and favour the King: describe to me all thou hast
seen of her insanity and tell me how long it is since the access
attacked her; also how thou camest by her and the horse and the Sage.”
So the King told him the whole story, from first to last, adding, “The
Sage is in gaol.” Quoth the Prince, “O auspicious King, and what hast
thou done with the horse?” Quoth the King, “O youth, it is with me yet,
laid up in one of my treasure-chambers,” whereupon said the Prince
within himself, “The best thing I can do is first to see the horse and
assure myself of its condition. If it be whole and sound, all will be
well and end well; but, if its motor-works be destroyed, I must find
some other way of delivering my beloved.” Thereupon he turned to the
King and said to him, “O King, I must see the horse in question: haply I
may find in it somewhat that will serve me for the recovery of the
damsel.” “With all my heart,” replied the King, and taking him by the
hand, showed him into the place where the horse was. The Prince went
round about it, examining its condition, and found it whole and sound,
whereat he rejoiced greatly and said to the King, “Allah save and exalt
the King! I would fain go in to the damsel, that I may see how it is
with her; for I hope in Allah to heal her by my healing hand through
means of the horse.” Then he bade them take care of the horse and the
King carried him to the Princess’s apartment, where her lover found her
wringing her hands and writhing and beating herself against the ground,
and tearing her garments to tatters as was her wont; but there was no
madness of Jinn in her, and she did this but that none might approach
her. When the Prince saw her thus, he said to her, “No harm shall betide
thee, O ravishment of the three worlds;” and went on to soothe her and
speak her fair, till he managed to whisper, “I am Kamar al-Akmar;”
whereupon she cried out with a loud cry and fell down fainting for
excess of joy; but the King thought this was epilepsy[28] brought on by
her fear of him, and by her suddenly being startled. Then the Prince put
his mouth to her ear and said to her, “O Shams al-Nahar, O seduction of
the universe, have a care for thy life and mine and be patient and
constant; for this our position needeth sufferance and skilful
contrivance to make shift for our delivery from this tyrannical King. My
first move will be now to go out to him and tell him that thou art
possessed of a Jinn and hence thy madness; but that I will engage to
heal thee and drive away the evil spirit, if he will at once unbind thy
bonds. So when he cometh in to thee, do thou speak him smooth words,
that he may think I have cured thee, and all will be done for us as we
desire.” Quoth she, “Hearkening and obedience;” and he went out to the
King in joy and gladness, and said to him, “O august King, I have, by
thy good fortune, discovered her disease and its remedy, and have cured
her for thee. So now do thou go in to her and speak her softly and treat
her kindly, and promise her what may please her; so shall all thou
desirest of her be accomplished to thee.”——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Three Hundred and Seventieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Prince
feigned himself a leach and went in to the damsel and made himself known
to her and told her how he purposed to deliver her, she cried
“Hearkening and obedience!” He then fared forth from her and sought the
King and said, “Go thou in to her and speak her softly and promise her
what may please her; so shall all thou desirest of her be accomplished
to thee.” Thereupon the King went in to her and when she saw him, she
rose and kissing the ground before him, bade him welcome and said, “I
admire how thou hast come to visit thy handmaid this day;” whereat he
was ready to fly for joy and bade the waiting-women and the eunuchs
attend her and carry her to the Hammam and make ready for her dresses
and adornment. So they went in to her and saluted her, and she returned
their salams with the goodliest language and after the pleasantest
fashion; whereupon they clad her in royal apparel and, clasping a collar
of jewels about her neck, carried her to the bath and served her there.
Then they brought her forth, as she were the full moon; and, when she
came into the King’s presence, she saluted him and kissed ground before
him; whereupon he joyed in her with joy exceeding and said to the
Prince, “O Sage, O philosopher, all this is of thy blessing. Allah
increase to us the benefit of thy healing breath!”[29] The Prince
replied, “O King, for the completion of her cure it behoveth that thou
go forth, thou and all thy troops and guards, to the place where thou
foundest her, not forgetting the beast of black wood which was with her;
for therein is a devil; and, unless I exorcise him, he will return to
her and afflict her at the head of every month.” “With love and
gladness,” cried the King, “O thou Prince of all philosophers and most
learned of all who see the light of day.” Then he brought out the ebony
horse to the meadow in question and rode thither with all his troops and
the Princess, little weeting the purpose of the Prince. Now when they
came to the appointed place, the Prince, still habited as a leach, bade
them set the Princess and the steed as far as eye could reach from the
King and his troops, and said to him, “With thy leave, and at thy word,
I will now proceed to the fumigations and conjurations, and here
imprison the adversary of mankind, that he may never more return to her.
After this, I shall mount this wooden horse which seemeth to be made of
ebony, and take the damsel up behind me; whereupon it will shake and
sway to and fro and fare forwards, till it come to thee, when the affair
will be at an end; and after this thou mayst do with her as thou wilt.”
When the King heard his words, he rejoiced with extreme joy; so the
Prince mounted the horse, and, taking the damsel up behind him, whilst
the King and his troops watched him, bound her fast to him. Then he
turned the ascending-pin and the horse took flight and soared with them
high in air, till they disappeared from every eye. After this the King
abode half the day, expecting their return; but they returned not. So
when he despaired of them, repenting him greatly of that which he had
done and grieving sore for the loss of the damsel, he went back to the
city with his troops. He then sent for the Persian who was in prison and
said to him, “O thou traitor, O thou villain, why didst thou hide from
me the mystery of the ebony horse? And now a sharper hath come to me and
hath carried it off, together with a slave-girl whose ornaments are
worth a mint of money, and I shall never see anyone or anything of them
again!” So the Persian related to him all his past, first and last, and
the King was seized with a fit of fury which well-nigh ended his life.
He shut himself up in his palace for a while, mourning and afflicted;
but at last his Wazirs came in to him and applied themselves to comfort
him, saying, “Verily, he who took the damsel is an enchanter, and
praised be Allah who hath delivered thee from his craft and sorcery!”
And they ceased not from him, till he was comforted for her loss. Thus
far concerning the King; but as for the Prince, he continued his career
towards his father’s capital in joy and cheer, and stayed not till he
alighted on his own palace, where he set the lady in safety; after which
he went in to his father and mother and saluted them and acquainted them
with her coming, whereat they were filled with solace and gladness. Then
he spread great banquets for the towns-folk——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.


       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Seventy-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the King’s son
spread great banquets for the towns-folk and they held high festival a
whole month, at the end of which time he went in to the Princess and
they took their joy of each other with exceeding joy. But his father
brake the ebony horse in pieces and destroyed its mechanism for flight;
moreover the Prince wrote a letter to the Princess’s father, advising
him of all that had befallen her and informing him how she was now
married to him and in all health and happiness, and sent it by a
messenger, together with costly presents and curious rarities. And when
the messenger arrived at the city which was Sana’a and delivered the
letter and the presents to the King, he read the missive and rejoiced
greatly thereat and accepted the presents, honouring and rewarding the
bearer handsomely. Moreover, he forwarded rich gifts to his son-in-law
by the same messenger, who returned to his master and acquainted him
with what had passed; whereat he was much cheered. And after this the
Prince wrote a letter every year to his father-in-law and sent him
presents till, in course of time, his sire King Sabur deceased and he
reigned in his stead, ruling justly over his lieges and conducting
himself well and righteously towards them, so that the land submitted to
him and his subjects did him loyal service; and Kamar al-Akmar and his
wife Shams al-Nahar abode in the enjoyment of all satisfaction and
solace of life, till there came to them the Destroyer of delights and
Sunderer of societies; the Plunderer of palaces, the Caterer for
cemeteries and the Garnerer of graves. And now glory be to the Living
One who dieth not and in whose hand is the dominion of the worlds
visible and invisible! Moreover I have heard tell the tale of


Footnote 1:

  This tale (one of those translated, by Galland) is best and fullest in
  the Bresl. Edit. iii. 329.

Footnote 2:

  Europe has degraded this autumnal festival, the Sun-fête Mihrgán
  (which balanced the vernal Nau-roz) into Michaelmas and its
  goose-massacre. It was so called because it began on the 16th of Mihr,
  the seventh month; and lasted six days, with feasts, festivities and
  great rejoicings in honour of the Sun, who now begins his
  southing-course to gladden the other half of the world.

Footnote 3:

  “Hindí” is an Indian Moslem as opposed to “Hindú,” a pagan, or Gentoo.

Footnote 4:

  The orig. Persian word is “Sháh·púr” = King’s son: the Greeks (who had
  no _sh_) (preferred Σαβὼρ); the Romans turned it into Sapor and the
  Arabs (who lack the _p_) into Sábúr. See p. x. Hamzæ Ispahanensis
  Annalium Libri x.: Gottwaldt, Lipsiæ mdcccxlviii.

Footnote 5:

  The magic horse may have originated with the Hindu tale of a wooden
  Garuda (the bird of Vishnu) built by a youth for the purpose of a
  vehicle. It came with the “Moors” to Spain and appears in “Le Cheval
  de Fust,” a French poem of the thirteenth Century. Thence it passed
  over to England as shown by Chaucer’s “Half-told tale of Cambuscan
  (Janghíz Khan?) bold,” as

                    The wondrous steed of brass
                    On which the Tartar King did ride;

  And Leland (Itinerary) derives “Rutlandshire” from “a man named Rutter
  who rode round it on a wooden horse constructed by art magic.” Lane
  (ii. 548) quotes the parallel story of Cleomades and Claremond which
  Mr. Keightley (Tales and Popular Fictions, chapt. ii) dates from our
  thirteenth century. See Vol. i., p. 160.

Footnote 6:

  All Moslems, except those of the Máliki school, hold that the maker of
  an image representing anything of life will be commanded on the
  Judgement Day to animate it, and failing will be duly sent to the
  Fire. This severity arose apparently from the necessity of putting
  down idol-worship and, perhaps, for the same reason the Greek Church
  admits pictures but not statues. Of course the command has been
  honoured with extensive breaching: for instance all the Sultans of
  Stambul have had their portraits drawn and painted.

Footnote 7:

  This description of ugly old age is written with true Arab _verve_.

Footnote 8:

  Arab. “Badinján”: Hind. Bengan: Pers. Bádingán or Badilján; the Mala
  insana (_Solanum pomiferum_ or _S. Melongena_) of the Romans, well
  known in Southern Europe. It is of two kinds, the red (_Solanum
  lycopersicum_) and the black (_S. Melongena_). The Spaniards know it
  as “berengeria” and when Sancho Panza (Part ii. chapt. 2) says, “The
  Moors are fond of egg-plants” he means more than appears. The
  vegetable is held to be exceedingly heating and thereby to breed
  melancholia and madness; hence one says to a man that has done
  something eccentric, “Thou hast been eating brinjalls.”

Footnote 9:

  Again to be understood _Hibernice_ “kilt.”

Footnote 10:

  _i.e._ for fear of the evil eye injuring the palace and, haply,

Footnote 11:

  The “Sufrah” before explained as acting provision-bag and table-cloth.

Footnote 12:

  Eastern women in hot weather, lie mother-nude under a sheet here
  represented by the hair. The Greeks and Romans also slept stripped and
  in mediæval England the most modest women saw nothing indelicate in
  sleeping naked by their naked husbands. The “night-cap” and the
  “night-gown” are comparatively modern inventions.

Footnote 13:

  Hindu fable turns this simile into better poetry, “She was like a
  second and a more wondrous moon made by the Creator.”

Footnote 14:

  “Sun of the Day.”

Footnote 15:

  Arab. “Shirk” = worshipping more than one God. A theological term here
  most appropriately used.

Footnote 16:

  The Bul. Edit. as usual abridges (vol. i. 534). The Prince lands on
  the palace-roof where he leaves his horse, and finding no one in the
  building goes back to the terrace. Suddenly he sees a beautiful girl
  approaching him with a party of her women, suggesting to him these

  She came without tryst in the darkest hour, ✿ Like full moon lighting
     horizon’s night:
  Slim-formed, there is not in the world her like ✿ For grace of form or
     for gifts of sprite:
  “Praise him who made her from semen-drop,” ✿ I cried, when her beauty
     first struck my sight:
  I guard her from eyes, seeking refuge with ✿ The Lord of mankind and
     of morning-light.

  The two then made acquaintance and “follows what follows.”

Footnote 17:

  Arab. “Akásirah,” explained (vol. i., 75) as the plur. of Kisrá.

Footnote 18:

  The dearest ambition of a slave is not liberty but to have a slave of
  his own. This was systematised by the servile rulers known in history
  as the Mameluke Beys and to the Egyptians as the Ghuzz. Each had his
  household of servile pages and squires, who looked forward to filling
  the master’s place as knight or baron.

Footnote 19:

  The well-known capital of Al-Yaman, a true Arabia Felix, a Paradise
  inhabited by demons in the shape of Turkish soldiery and Arab
  caterans. According to Moslem writers Sana’a was founded by Shem son
  of Noah who, wandering southward with his posterity after his father’s
  death, and finding the site delightful, dug a well and founded the
  citadel, Ghamdán, which afterwards contained a _Maison Carrée_
  rivalling (or attempting to rival) the Meccan Ka’abah. The builder was
  Surahbíl who, says M. C. de Perceval coloured its four faces red,
  white, golden and green; the central quadrangle had seven stories (the
  planets) each forty cubits high, and the lowest was a marble hall
  ceiling’d with a single slab. At the four corners stood hollow lions
  through whose mouths the winds roared. This palatial citadel-temple
  was destroyed by order of Caliph Omar. The city’s ancient name was
  Azal or Uzal whom some identify with one of the thirteen sons of
  Joktan (Genesis xi. 27): it took its present name from the Ethiopian
  conquerors (they say) who, seeing it for the first time, cried “Hazá
  Sana’ah!” meaning in their tongue, this is commodious, etc. I may note
  that the word is Kisawahili (Zanzibarian) _e.g._ “Yámbo _sáná_—is the
  state _good_?” Sana’a was the capital of the Tabábi’ah or Tobba Kings
  who judaized; and the Abyssinians with their Negush made it Christian
  while the Persians under Anushirwán converted it to Guebrism. It is
  now easily visited but to little purpose; excursions in the
  neighbourhood being deadly dangerous. Moreover the Turkish garrison
  would probably murder a stranger who sympathised with the Arabs, and
  the Arabs kill one who took part with their hated and hateful
  conquerors. The late Mr. Shapira of Jerusalem declared that he had
  visited it and Jews have great advantages in such travel. But his
  friends doubted him.

Footnote 20:

  The Bresl. Edit. (iii. 347) prints three vile errors in four lines.

Footnote 21:

  Alcove is a corruption of the Arab. Al-Kubbah (the dome) through Span.
  and Port.

Footnote 22:

  Easterns as a rule sleep with head and body covered by a sheet or in
  cold weather a blanket. The practice is doubtless hygienic, defending
  the body from draughts when the pores are open; but Europeans find it
  hard to adopt; it seems to stop their breathing. Another excellent
  practice in the East and, indeed amongst barbarians and savages
  generally, is training children to sleep with mouths shut: in after
  life they never snore and in malarious lands they do not require
  Outram’s “fever-guard,” a swathe of muslin over the mouth. Mr. Catlin
  thought so highly of the “shut mouth” that he made it the subject of a

Footnote 23:

  Arab. “Hanzal” = coloquintida, an article often mentioned by Arabs in
  verse and prose; the bright coloured little gourd attracts every eye
  by its golden glance when travelling through the brown-yellow waste of
  sand and clay. A favourite purgative (enough for a horse) is made by
  filling the inside with sour milk which is drunk after a night’s
  soaking: it is as active as the croton-nut of the Gold Coast.

Footnote 24:

  The Bresl. Edit. iii. 354 sends him to the “land of Sín” (China).

Footnote 25:

  Arab. “Yá Kisrawi!” = O subject of the Kisrá or Chosroë; the latter
  explained in vol. i., 75. “Fars” is the origin of “Persia”; and there
  is a hit at the prodigious lying of the modern race, whose forefathers
  were so famous as truth-tellers. “I am a Persian, but I am not lying
  now,” is a phrase familiar to every traveller.

Footnote 26:

  There is no such name: perhaps it is a clerical error for “Har jáh” =
  (a man of) any place. I know an Englishman who in Persian called
  himself “Mirza Abdullah-i-Híchmakáni” = Master Abdullah of Nowhere.

Footnote 27:

  The Bresl. Edit. (loc. cit.) gives a comical description of the Prince
  assuming the dress of an astrologer-doctor, clapping an old book under
  his arm, fumbling a rosary of beads, enlarging his turband,
  lengthening his sleeves and blackening his eyelids with antimony.
  Here, however, it would be out of place. Very comical also is the way
  in which he pretends to cure the maniac by “muttering unknown words,
  blowing in her face, biting her ear,” etc.

Footnote 28:

  Arab. “Sar’a” = falling sickness. Here again we have in all its
  simplicity the old nursery idea of “possession” by evil spirits.

Footnote 29:

  Arab. “Nafahát” = breathings, benefits, the Heb. Neshamah opp. to
  Nephesh (soul) and Ruach (spirit). Healing by the breath is a popular
  idea throughout the East and not unknown to Western Magnetists and
  Mesmerists. The miraculous cures of the Messiah were, according to
  Moslems, mostly performed by aspiration. They hold that in the days of
  Isa physic had reached its highest development, and thus his miracles
  were mostly miracles of medicine; whereas, in Mohammed’s time,
  eloquence had attained its climax and accordingly his miracles were
  those of eloquence, as shown in the Koran and Ahádís.


There was once, in days of yore and in ages and times long gone before,
a King of great power and lord of glory and dominion galore; who had a
Wazir Ibrahim hight, and this Wazir’s daughter was a damsel of
extraordinary beauty and loveliness, gifted with passing brilliancy and
the perfection of grace, possessed of abundant wit, and in all good
breeding complete. But she loved wassail and wine and the human face
divine and choice verses and rare stories; and the delicacy of her inner
gifts invited all hearts to love, even as saith the poet, describing

 Like moon she shines amid the starry sky, ✿ Robing in tresses blackest
    ink outvie.
 The morning-breezes give her boughs fair drink, ✿ And like a branch she
    sways with supple ply:
 She smiles in passing us. O thou that art ✿ Fairest in yellow robed, or
 Thou playest with my wit in love, as though ✿ Sparrow in hand of playful
    boy were I.[31]

Her name was Rose-in-Hood and she was so named for her young and tender
beauty and the freshness of her brilliancy; and the King loved her in
his cups because of her accomplishments and fine manners. Now it was the
King’s custom yearly to gather together all the nobles of his realm and
play with the ball.[32] So when the day came round whereon the folk
assembled for ball-play, the Minister’s daughter seated herself at her
lattice, to divert herself by looking on at the game; and, as they were
at play, her glance fell upon a youth among the guards than whom never
was seen a comelier face nor a goodlier form; for he was bright of
favour showing white teeth when he smiled, tall-statured and
broad-shouldered. She looked at him again and again and could not take
her fill of gazing; and presently said to her nurse, “What is the name
of yonder handsome young man among the troops?” Replied the nurse, “O my
daughter, the dear fellows are all handsome. Which of them dost thou
mean?” Said Rose-in-Hood, “Wait till he come past and I will point him
out to thee.” So she took an apple and as he rode by dropped it on him,
whereupon he raised his head, to see who did this, and espied the
Wazir’s daughter at the window, as she were the moon of fullest light in
the darkness of the night; nor did he withdraw his eyes, till his heart
was utterly lost to her, and he recited these lines:—

 Was’t archer shot me, or was’t thine eyes ✿ Ruined lover’s heart that
    thy charms espies?
 Was the notchèd shaft[33] from a host outshot, ✿ Or from latticed window
    in sudden guise?

When the game was at an end, and all had left the ground, she asked her
nurse, “What is the name of that youth I showed thee?”; and the good
woman answered, “His name is Uns al-Wujud;” whereat Rose-in-Hood shook
her head and lay down on her couch, with thoughts a-fire for love. Then,
sighing deeply, she improvised these couplets:—

 He missed not who dubbed thee, “World’s delight,” ✿ A world’s love
    conjoining to bounty’s light:[34]
 O thou, whose favour the full moon favours, ✿ Whose charms make life and
    the living bright!
 Thou hast none equal amongst mankind; ✿ Sultan of Beauty, and proof I’ll

 Thine eyebrows are likest a well-formed Nún,[35] ✿ And thine eyes a
    Sád,[36] by His hand indite;
 Thy shape is the soft, green bough that gives ✿ When asked to all with
    all-gracious sprite:
 Thou excellest knights of the world in stowre, ✿ With delight and beauty
    and bounty dight.

When she had finished her verses, she wrote them on a sheet of paper,
which she folded in a piece of gold-embroidered silk and placed under
her pillow. Now one of her nurses had seen her; so she came up to her
and held her in talk till she slept, when she stole the scroll from
under her pillow; and, after reading it, knew that she had fallen in
love with Uns al-Wujud. Then she returned the scroll to its place and
when her mistress awoke, she said to her, “O my lady, indeed I am to
thee a true counsellor and am tenderly anxious on thy account. Know that
love is a tyrant and the hiding it melteth iron and entaileth sickness
and unease; nor for whoso confesseth it is there aught of reproach.”
Rejoined Rose-in-Hood, “And what is the medicine of passion, O nurse
mine?” Answered the nurse, “The medicine of passion is enjoyment.” Quoth
she, “And how may one come by enjoyment?” Quoth the other, “By letters
and messages, my lady; by whispered words of compliment and by greetings
before the world;[37] all this bringeth lovers together and makes hard
matters easy. So if thou have aught at heart, mistress mine, I am the
fittest to keep thy secret and do thy desires and carry thy letters.”
Now when the damsel heard this, her reason flew and fled for joy; but
she restrained herself from speech till she should see the issue of the
matter, saying within herself, “None knoweth this thing of me, nor will
I trust this one with my secret, till I have tried her.” Then said the
woman, “O my lady, I saw in my sleep as though a man came to me and
said:—Thy mistress and Uns al-Wujud love each other; so do thou serve
their case by carrying their messages and doing their desires and
keeping their secrets; and much good shall befal thee. So now I have
told thee my vision and it is thine to decide.” Quoth Rose-in-Hood,
after she heard of the dream,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

      Now when it was the Three Hundred and Seventy-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King that Rose-in-Hood asked
her nurse after hearing of the dream, “Tell me, canst thou keep a
secret, O my nurse?”; whereto she answered, “And how should I not keep
secrecy, I that am of the flower of the free?”[38] Then the maiden
pulled out the scroll, whereon she had written the verses and said,
“Carry me this my letter to Uns al-Wujud and bring me his reply.” The
nurse took the letter and, repairing to Uns al-Wujud, kissed his hands
and greeted him right courteously, then gave him the paper; and he read
it and, comprehending the contents, wrote on the back these couplets:—

 I soothe my heart and my love repel; ✿ But my state interprets my love
    too well:
 When tears flow I tell them mine eyes are ill, ✿ Lest the censor see and
    my case foretell,
 I was fancy-free and unknew I Love; ✿ But I fell in love and in madness
 I show you my case and complain of pain, ✿ Pine and ecstasy that your
    ruth compel:
 I write you with tears of eyes, so belike ✿ They explain the love come
    my heart to quell;
 Allah guard a face that is veiled with charms, ✿ Whose thrall is Moon
    and the Stars as well:
 In her beauty I never beheld the like; ✿ From her sway the branches
    learn sway and swell:
 I beg you, an ‘tis not too much of pains, ✿ To call;[39] ‘twere boon
    without parallel.
 I give you a soul you will haply take. ✿ To which Union is Heaven,
    Disunion Hell.

Then he folded the letter and kissing it, gave it to the go-between and
said to her, “O nurse, incline thy lady’s heart to me.” “To hear is to
obey,” answered she and carried the script to her mistress, who kissed
it and laid it on her head, then she opened it and read it and
understood it and wrote at the foot of it these couplets:—

 O whose heart by our beauty is captive ta’en, ✿ Have patience and all
    thou shalt haply gain!
 When we knew that thy love was a true affect, ✿ And what pained our
    heart to thy heart gave pain,
 We had granted thee wished-for call and more; ✿ But hindered so doing
    the chamberlain.
 When the night grows dark, through our love’s excess ✿ Fire burns our
    vitals with might and main:
 And sleep from our beds is driven afar, ✿ And our bodies are tortured by
 “Hide Love!” in Love’s code is the first command; ✿ And from raising his
    veil thy hand restrain:
 I fell love-fulfillèd by yon gazelle: ✿ Would he never wander from where
    I dwell!

Then she folded the letter and gave it to the nurse, who took it and
went out from her mistress to seek the young man; but, as she would fare
forth, the chamberlain met her and said to her, “Whither away?” “To the
bath,” answered she; but in her fear and confusion, she dropped the
letter, without knowing it, and went off unrecking what she had done;
when one of the eunuchs, seeing it lying in the way, picked it up. When
the nurse came without the door, she sought for it, but found it not, so
turned back to her mistress and told her of this and what had befallen
her. Meanwhile, the Wazir came out of the Harim and seated himself on
his couch; whereupon behold, the eunuch, who had picked up the letter,
came in to him, hending it in hand and said, “O my lord, I found this
paper lying upon the floor and picked it up.” So the Minister took it
from his hand, folded as it was, and opening it, read the verses as
above set down. Then, after mastering the meaning, he examined the
writing and knew it for his daughter’s hand; whereupon he went to her
mother, weeping so abundant tears that his beard was wetted. His wife
asked him, “What maketh thee weep, O my lord?”; and he answered, “Take
this letter and see what is therein.” So she took it and found it to be
a love-letter from her daughter Rose-in-Hood to Uns al-Wujud: whereupon
the ready drops sprang to her eyes; but she composed her mind, and,
gulping down her tears, said to her husband, “O my lord, there is no
profit in weeping: the right course is to cast about for a means of
keeping thine honour and concealing the affair of thy daughter.” And she
went on to comfort him and lighten his trouble; but he said, “I am
fearful for my daughter by reason of this new passion. Knowest thou not
that the Sultan loveth Uns al-Wujud with exceeding love? And my fear
hath two causes. The first concerneth myself; it is, that she is my
daughter: the second is on account of the King; for that Uns al-Wujud is
a favourite with the Sultan and peradventure great troubles shall come
out of this affair. What deemest thou should be done?”——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Seventy-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Wazir, after
recounting the affair of his daughter, asked his wife, “What deemest
thou should be done?” And she answered, “Have patience whilst I pray the
prayer for right direction.” So she prayed a two-bow prayer according to
the prophetic[40] ordinance for seeking divine guidance; after which she
said to her husband, “In the midst of the Sea of Treasures[41] standeth
a mountain named the Mount of the Bereaved Mother (the cause of which
being so called shall presently follow in its place, Inshallah!); and
thither can none have access, save with pains and difficulty and
distress: do thou make that same her abiding-place.” Accordingly the
Minister and his wife agreed to build on that mountain a virgin castle
and lodge their daughter therein with the necessary provision to be
renewed year by year and attendants to cheer and to serve her.
Accordingly he collected carpenters, builders and architects, and
despatched them to the mountain, where they builded her an impregnable
castle, never saw eyes the like thereof. Then he made ready vivers and
carriage for the journey and, going in to his daughter by night, bade
her prepare to set out on a pleasure-excursion. Thereupon her heart
presaged the sorrows of separation and, when she went forth and saw the
preparations for the journey, she wept with sore weeping and wrote that
upon the door which might acquaint her lover with what had passed and
with the transports of passion and grief that were upon her, transports
such as would make the flesh to shiver and hair to stare, and melt the
hardest stone with care, and tear from every eye a tear. And what she
wrote were these couplets:—

 By Allah, O thou house, if my beloved a morn go by, ✿ And greet with
    signs and signals lover e’er is wont to fly,
 I pray thee give him our salams in pure and fragrant guise, ✿ For he
    indeed may never know where we this eve shall lie.
 I wot not whither they have fared, thus bearing us afar ✿ At speed, and
    lightly-quipt, the lighter from one love to fly:
 When starkens night, the birds in brake or branches snugly perched ✿
    Wail for our sorrow and announce our hapless destiny:
 The tongue of their condition saith, “Alas, alas for woe, ✿ And heavy
    brunt of parting-blow two lovers must aby”:
 When viewed I separation-cups were fillèd to the brim ✿ And us with
    merest sorrow-wine Fate came so fast to ply,
 I mixed them with becoming share of patience self to excuse, ✿ But
    Patience for the loss of you her solace doth refuse.

Now when she ended her lines, she mounted and they set forward with her
crossing and cutting over wold and wild and riant dale and rugged hill,
till they came to the shore of the Sea of Treasures here they pitched
their tents and built her a great ship, wherein they went down with her
and her suite and carried them over to the mountain. The Minister had
ordered them, on reaching the journey’s end, to set her in the castle
and to make their way back to the shore, where they were to break up the
vessel. So they did his bidding and returned home, weeping over what had
befallen. Such was their case; but as regards Uns al-Wujud, he arose
from sleep and prayed the dawn-prayer, after which he took horse and
rode forth to attend upon the Sultan. On his way, he passed by the
Wazir’s house, thinking perchance to see some of his followers as of
wont; but he saw no one and, looking upon the door, he read written
thereon the verses aforesaid. At this sight, his senses failed him; fire
was kindled in his vitals and he returned to his lodging, where he
passed the day in trouble and transports of grief, without finding ease
or patience, till night darkened upon him, when his yearning and
love-longing redoubled. Thereupon, by way of concealment, he disguised
himself in the ragged garb of a Fakir,[42] and set out wandering at
random through the glooms of night, distracted and knowing not whither
he went. So he wandered on all that night and next day, till the heat of
the sun waxed fierce and the mountains flamed like fire and thirst was
grievous upon him. Presently, he espied a tree, by whose side was a thin
thread of running water; so he made towards it and sitting down in the
shade, on the bank of the rivulet, essayed to drink, but found that the
water had no taste in his mouth;[43] and, indeed his colour had changed
and his face had yellowed, and his feet were swollen with travel and
travail. So he shed copious tears and repeated these couplets:—

 The lover is drunken with love of friend; ✿ On a longing that groweth
    his joys depend:
 Love-distracted, ardent, bewildered, lost ✿ From home, nor may food
    aught of pleasure lend:
 How can life be delightsome to one in love, ✿ And from lover parted,
    ‘twere strange, unkenned!
 I melt with the fire of my pine for them, ✿ And the tears down my cheek
    in a stream descend.
 Shall I see them, say me, or one that comes ✿ From the camp, who th’
    afflicted heart shall tend?

And after thus reciting he wept till he wetted the hard dry ground; but
anon without loss of time he rose and fared on again over waste and
wold, till there came out upon him a lion, with a neck buried in tangled
mane, a head the bigness of a dome, a mouth wider than the door thereof
and teeth like elephants’ tusks. Now when Uns al-Wujud saw him, he gave
himself up for lost and, turning[44] towards the Temple of Meccah,
pronounced the professions of the faith and prepared for death. He had
read in books that whoso will flatter the lion, beguileth him,[45] for
that he is readily duped by smooth speech and gentled by being
glorified; so he began and said, “O Lion of the forest! O Lord of the
waste! O terrible Leo! O father of fighters! O Sultan of wild beasts!
Behold, I am a lover in longing, whom passion and severance have been
wronging; since I parted from my dear, I have lost my reasoning gear;
wherefore, to my speech do thou give ear and have ruth on my passion and
hope and fear.” When the lion heard this, he drew back from him and
sitting down on his hind-quarters, raised his head to him and began to
frisk tail and paws; which when Uns al-Wujud saw, he recited these

 Lion of the wold wilt thou murther me, ✿ Ere I meet her who doomed me to
 I am not game and I bear no fat; ✿ For the loss of my love makes me
    sickness dree;
 And estrangement from her hath so worn me down ✿ I am like a shape in a
    shroud we see.
 O thou sire of spoils,[46] O thou lion of war, ✿ Give not my pains to
    the blamer’s gree.
 I burn with love, I am drowned in tears ✿ For a parting from lover, sore
 And my thoughts of her in the murk of night ✿ For love hath made my
    being unbe.

As he had finished his lines the lion rose——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

      Now when it was the Three Hundred and Seventy-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that as Uns al-Wujud
ended his lines, the lion arose and stalked slowly up to him, with eyes
tear-railing and licked him with his tongue, then walked on before him,
signing to him as though saying, “Follow me.” So he followed him, and
the beast ceased not leading him on for a while till he brought him up a
mountain, and guided him to the farther side, where he came upon the
track of a caravan over the desert, and knew it to be that of
Rose-in-Hood and her company. Then he took the trail and, when the lion
saw that he knew the track for that of the party which escorted her, he
turned back and went his way; whilst Uns al-Wujud walked along the
foot-marks day and night, till they brought him to a dashing sea,
swollen with clashing surge. The trail led down to the sandy shore and
there broke off; whereby he knew that they had taken ship and had
continued their journey by water. So he lost hope of finding his lover
and with hot tears he repeated these couplets:—

 Far is the fane and patience faileth me; ✿ How can I seek them[47] o’er
    the abysmal sea;
 Or how be patient, when my vitals burn ✿ For love of them, and sleep
    waxed insomny?
 Since the sad day they left the home and fled, ✿ My heart’s consumèd by
    love’s ardency:
 Sayhun, Jayhun,[48] Euphrates-like my tears, ✿ Make flood no deluged
    rain its like can see:
 Mine eyelids chafed with running tears remain, ✿ My heart from fiery
    sparks is never free;
 The hosts of love and longing pressèd me ✿ And made the hosts of
    patience break and flee.
 I’ve risked my life too freely for their love; ✿ And risk of life the
    least of ills shall be.
 Allah ne’er punish eye that saw those charms ✿ Enshrined, and passing
    full moon’s brillancy!
 I found me felled by fair wide-opened eyes, ✿ Which pierced my heart
    with stringless archery:
 And soft, lithe, swaying shape enraptured me ✿ As sway the branches of
    the willow-tree:
 Wi’ them I covet union that I win, ✿ O’er love-pains cark and care, a
 For love of them aye, morn and eve I pine, ✿ And doubt all came to me
    from evil eyne.

And when his lines were ended he wept, till he swooned away, and abode
in his swoon a long while; but as soon as he came to himself, he looked
right and left and seeing no one in the desert, he became fearful of the
wild beasts; so he clomb to the top of a high mountain, where he heard
the voice of a son of Adam speaking within a cave. He listened and lo!
they were the accents of a devotee, who had forsworn the world and given
himself up to pious works and worship. He knocked thrice at the
cavern-door, but the hermit made him no answer, neither came forth to
him; wherefore he groaned aloud and recited these couplets:—

 What pathway find I my desire t’obtain, ✿ How ‘scape from care and cark
    and pain and bane?
 All terrors join to make me old and hoar ✿ Of head and heart, ere youth
    from me is ta’en:
 Nor find I any aid my passion, nor ✿ A friend to lighten load of bane
    and pain.
 How great and many troubles I’ve endured! ✿ Fortune hath turned her back
    I see unfain.
 Ah mercy, mercy on the lover’s heart, ✿ Doomed cup of parting and
    desertion drain!
 A fire is in his heart, his vitals waste, ✿ And severance made his
    reason vainest vain.
 How dread the day I came to her abode ✿ And saw the writ they wrote on
    doorway lain!
 I wept, till gave I earth to drink my grief; ✿ But still to near and
    far[49] I did but feign:
 Then strayed I till in waste a lion sprang ✿ On me, and but for
    flattering words had slain:
 I soothed him: so he spared me and lent me aid, ✿ He too might haply of
    love’s taste complain.
 O devotee, that idlest in thy cave, ✿ Meseems eke thou hast learned
    Love’s might and main;
 But if, at end of woes, with them I league, ✿ Straight I’ll forget all
    suffering and fatigue.

Hardly had he made an end of these verses when, behold! the door of the
cavern opened and he heard one say, “Alas, the pity of it!”[50] So he
entered and saluted the devotee, who returned his salam and asked him,
“What is thy name?” Answered the young man, “Uns al-Wujud.” “And what
caused thee to come hither?” quoth the hermit. So he told him his story
in its entirety, omitting naught of his misfortunes; whereat he wept and

“O Uns al-Wujud, these twenty years have I passed in this place, but
never beheld I any man here, until yesterday, when I heard a noise of
weeping and lamentation and, looking forth in the direction of the
sound, saw many people and tents pitched on the sea-shore; and the party
at once proceeded to build a ship, in which certain of them embarked and
sailed over the waters. Then some of the crew returned with the ship and
breaking it up, went their way; and I suspect that those who embarked in
the ship and returned not, are they whom thou seekest. In that case, O
Uns al-Wujud, thy grief must needs be great and sore and thou art
excusable, though never yet was lover but suffered love-longing.” Then
he recited these couplets:—

 Uns al-Wujud, dost deem me fancy-free, ✿ When pine and longing slay and
    quicken me?
 I have known love and yearning from the years ✿ Since mother-milk I
    drank, nor e’er was free.
 Long struggled I with Love, till learnt his might; ✿ Ask thou of him,
    he’ll tell with willing gree.
 Love-sick and pining drank I passion-cup, ✿ And well-nigh perished in
    mine agony.
 Strong was I, but my strength to weakness turned, ✿ And eye-sword brake
    through Patience armoury:
 Hope not to win love-joys, without annoy; ✿ Contrary ever links with
 But fear not change from lover true; be true ✿ Unto thy wish, some day
    thine own ‘twill be.
 Love hath forbidden to his votaries ✿ Relinquishment as deadliest

The eremite, having ended his verse, rose and, coming up to Uns
al-Wujud, embraced him,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Seventy-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the eremite,
having ended his verse, rose and coming up to Uns al-Wujud embraced him,
and they wept together, till the hills rang with their cries and they
fell down fainting. When they revived, they swore brotherhood[51] in
Allah Almighty; after which said Uns al-Wujud, “This very night will I
pray to God and seek of Him direction[52] anent what thou shouldst do to
attain thy desire.” Thus it was with them; but as regards Rose-in-Hood,
when they brought her to the mountain and set her in the castle and she
beheld its ordering, she wept and exclaimed, “By Allah, thou art a
goodly place, save that thou lackest in thee the presence of the
beloved!”[53] Then seeing birds in the island, she bade her people set
snares for them and put all they caught in cages within the castle; and
they did so. But she sat at a lattice and bethought her of what had
passed, and desire and passion and distraction redoubled upon her, till
she burst into tears and repeated these couplets:—

 O to whom now, of my desire complaining sore, shall I ✿ Bewail my
    parting from my fere compellèd thus to fly?
 Flames rage within what underlies my ribs, yet hide them I ✿ In deepest
    secret dreading aye the jealous hostile spy:
 I am grown as lean, attenuate as any pick of tooth,[54] ✿ By sore
    estrangement, absence, ardour, ceaseless sob and sigh.
 Where is the eye of my beloved to see how I’m become ✿ Like tree
    stripped bare of leafage left to linger and to die.
 They tyrannisèd over me whom they confined in place ✿ Whereto the lover
    of my heart may never draw him nigh:
 I beg the Sun for me to give greetings a thousandfold, ✿ At time of
    rising and again when setting from the sky,
 To the belovèd one who shames a full moon’s loveliness, ✿ When shows
    that slender form that doth the willow-branch outvie.
 If Rose herself would even with his cheek, I say of her ✿ “Thou art not
    like it if to me my portion thou deny:”[55]

 His honey-dew of lips is like the grateful water draught ✿ Would cool me
    when a fire in heart upflameth fierce and high:
 How shall I give him up who is my heart and soul of me, ✿ My malady my
    wasting cause, my love, sole leach of me?

Then, as the glooms of night closed around her, her yearning increased
and she called to mind the past and recited also these couplets:—

 ‘Tis dark: my transport and unease now gather might and main, ✿ And
    love-desire provoketh me to wake my wonted pain:
 The pang of parting takes for ever place within my breast, ✿ And pining
    makes me desolate in destitution lain.
 Ecstasy sore maltreats my soul and yearning burns my sprite, ✿ And tears
    betray love’s secresy which I would lief contain:
 I weet no way, I know no case that can make light my load, ✿ Or heal my
    wasting body or cast out from me this bane.
 A hell of fire is in my heart upflames with lambent tongue ✿ And Lazá’s
    furnace-fires within my liver place have ta’en.
 O thou, exaggerating blame for what befel, enough ✿ I bear with patience
    whatsoe’er hath writ for me the Pen!
 I swear, by Allah, ne’er to find aught comfort for their loss; ✿ ‘Tis
    oath of passion’s children and their oaths are ne’er in vain.
 O Night! Salams of me to friends and let to them be known ✿ Of thee true
    knowledge how I wake and waking ever wone.

Meanwhile, the hermit said to Uns al-Wujud, “Go down to the palm-grove
in the valley and fetch some fibre.”[56] So he went and returned with
the palm-fibre, which the hermit took and, twisting into ropes, made
therewith a net,[57] such as is used for carrying straw; after which he
said, “O Uns al-Wujud, in the heart of the valley groweth a gourd, which
springeth up and drieth upon its roots. Go down there and fill this sack
therewith; then tie it together and, casting it into the water, embark
thereon and make for the midst of the sea, so haply thou shalt win thy
wish; for whoso never ventureth shall not have what he seeketh.” “I hear
and obey,” answered Uns al-Wujud. Then he bade the hermit farewell after
the holy man had prayed for him; and, betaking himself to the sole of
the valley, did as his adviser had counselled him; made the sack,
launched it upon the water, and pushed from shore. Then there arose a
wind, which drave him out to sea, till he was lost to the eremite’s
view; and he ceased not to float over the abysses of the ocean, one
billow tossing him up and another bearing him down (and he beholding the
while the dangers and marvels of the deep), for the space of three days.
At the end of that time Fate cast him upon the Mount of the Bereft
Mother, where he landed, giddy and tottering like a chick unfledged, and
at the last of his strength for hunger and thirst; but, finding there
streams flowing and birds on the branches cooing and fruit-laden trees
in clusters and singly growing, he ate of the fruits and drank of the
rills. Then he walked on till he saw some white thing afar off, and
making for it, found that it was a strongly fortified castle. So he went
up to the gate and seeing it locked, sat down by it; and there he sat
for three days when behold, the gate opened and an eunuch came out, who
finding Uns al-Wujud there seated, said to him, “Whence camest thou and
who brought thee hither?” Quoth he, “From Ispahan and I was voyaging
with merchandise when my ship was wrecked and the waves cast me upon the
farther side of this island.” Whereupon the eunuch wept and embraced
him, saying, “Allah preserve thee, O thou friendly face! Ispahan is mine
own country and I have there a cousin, the daughter of my father’s
brother, whom I loved from my childhood and cherished with fond
affection; but a people stronger than we fell upon us in foray and
taking me among other booty, cut off my yard[58] and sold me for a
castrato, whilst I was yet a lad; and this is how I came to be in such
case.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Seventy-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the eunuch who
came forth from the castle, where Rose-in-Hood was confined, told Uns
al-Wujud all his tale and said:—“The raiders who captured me cut off my
yard and sold me for a castrato; and this is how I came to be in such
case.”[59] And after saluting him and wishing him long life, the eunuch
carried him into the courtyard of the castle, where he saw a great tank
of water, surrounded by trees, on whose branches hung cages of silver,
with doors of gold, and therein birds were warbling and singing the
praises of the Requiting King. And when he came to the first cage he
looked in and lo! a turtle dove, on seeing him, raised her voice and
cried out, saying, “O Thou Bounty-fraught!” Whereat he fell down
fainting and after coming to himself, he sighed heavily and recited
these couplets:—

 O turtle dove, like me art thou distraught? ✿ Then pray the Lord and
    sing “O Bounty-fraught!”
 Would I knew an thy moan were sign of joy, ✿ Or cry of love-desire in
    heart inwrought,—
 An moan thou pining for a lover gone ✿ Who left thee woe begone to pine
    in thought,—
 Or if like me hast lost thy fondest friend, ✿ And severance long desire
    to memory brought?
 O Allah, guard a faithful lover’s lot ✿ I will not leave her though my
    bones go rot!

Then, after ending his verses, he fainted again; and, presently reviving
he went on to the second cage, wherein he found a ringdove. When it saw
him, it sang out, “O Eternal, I thank thee!” and he groaned and recited
these couplets:—

 I heard a ringdove chanting plaintively, ✿ “I thank Thee, O Eternal for
    this misery!”
 Haply, perchance, may Allah, of His grace, ✿ Send me by this long round
    my love to see.
 Full oft[60] she comes with honeyed lips dark red, ✿ And heaps up lowe
    upon love’s ardency.

 Quoth I (while longing fires flame high and fierce ✿ In heart, and
    wasting life’s vitality,
 And tears like gouts of blood go railing down ✿ In torrents over cheeks
    now pale of blee),
 “None e’er trod earth that was not born to woe, ✿ But I will patient
    dree mine agony,
 So help me Allah! till that happy day ✿ When with my mistress I unite
    shall be:
 Then will I spend my good on lover-wights, ✿ Who’re of my tribe and of
    the faith of me;
 And loose the very birds from jail set free, ✿ And change my grief for
    gladdest gree and glee!”

Then he went on to the third cage, wherein he found a mocking-bird[61]
which, when it saw him, set up a song, and he recited the following

 Pleaseth me yon Hazár of mocking strain ✿ Like voice of lover pained by
    love in vain.
 Woe’s me for lovers! Ah how many men ✿ By nights and pine and passion
    low are lain!
 As though by stress of love they had been made ✿ Morn-less and
    sleep-less by their pain and bane.
 When I went daft for him who conquered me ✿ And pined for him who proved
    of proudest strain,
 My tears in streams down trickled and I cried ✿ “These long-linkt tears
    bind like an adamant-chain:”
 Grew concupiscence, severance long, and I ✿ Lost Patience’ hoards and
    grief waxed sovereign:
 If Justice bide in world and me unite ✿ With him I love and Allah veil
    us deign,
 I’ll strip my clothes that he my form shall sight ✿ With parting,
    distance, grief, how poor of plight!

Then he went to the fourth cage, where he found a Bulbul[62] which, at
sight of him, began to sway to and fro and sing its plaintive descant;
and when he heard its complaint, he burst into tears and repeated these

 The Bulbul’s note, whenas dawn is nigh, ✿ Tells the lover from strains
    of strings to fly:
 Complaineth for passion Uns al-Wujud, ✿ For pine that would being to him

 How many a strain do we hear, whose sound ✿ Softens stones and the rock
    can mollify:
 And the breeze of morning that sweetly speaks ✿ Of meadows in flowerèd
 And scents and sounds in the morning-tide ✿ Of birds and zephyrs in
    fragrance vie;
 But I think of one, of an absent friend, ✿ And tears rail like rain from
    a showery sky;
 And the flamy tongues in my breast uprise ✿ As sparks from gleed that in
    dark air fly.
 Allah deign vouchsafe to a lover distraught ✿ Someday the face of his
    dear to descry!
 For lovers, indeed, no excuse is clear, ✿ Save excuse of sight and
    excuse of eye.

Then he walked on a little and came to a goodly cage, than which was no
goodlier there, and in it a culver of the forest, that is to say, a
wood-pigeon,[63] the bird renowned among birds as the minstrel of
love-longing, with a collar of jewels about its neck marvellous fine and
fair. He considered it awhile and, seeing it absently brooding in its
cage, he shed tears and repeated these couplets:—

 O culver of copse,[64] with salams I greet; ✿ O brother of lovers who
    woe must weet!
 I love a gazelle who is slender-slim, ✿ Whose glances for keenness the
    scymitar beat:
 For her love are my heart and my vitals a-fire, ✿ And my frame consumes
    in love’s fever-heat.
 The sweet taste of food is unlawful for me, ✿ And forbidden is slumber,
    unlawfullest sweet.
 Endurance and solace have travelled from me, ✿ And love homes in my
    heart and grief takes firm seat:
 How shall life deal joy when they flee my sight ✿ Who are joy and
    gladness and life and sprite?

As soon as Uns al-Wujud had ended his verse——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

      Now when it was the Three Hundred and Seventy-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that as soon as Uns
al-Wujud had ended his verse, the wood-culver awoke from its brooding
and cooed a reply to his lines and shrilled and trilled with its
thrilling notes till it all but spake with human speech;[65] and the
tongue of the case talked for it and recited these couplets:—

 O lover, thou bringest to thought a tide ✿ When the strength of my youth
    first faded and died;
 And a friend of whose form I was ‘namourèd, ✿ Seductive and dight with
    beauty’s pride;
 Whose voice, as he sat on the sandhill-tree, ✿ From the Nay’s[66] sweet
    sound turned my heart aside;
 A fowler snared him in net, the while ✿ “O that man would leave me at
    large!” he cried:
 I had hoped he might somewhat of mercy show ✿ When a hapless lover he so
 But Allah smite him who tore me away, ✿ In his hardness of heart, from
    my lover’s side;
 But aye my desire for him groweth more, ✿ And my heart with the fires of
    disjunction is fried:
 Allah guard a true lover, who strives with love, ✿ And hath borne the
    torments I still abide!
 And, seeing me bound in this cage, with mind ✿ Of ruth, release me my
    love to find.

Then Uns al-Wujud turned to his companion, the Ispahahi, and said, “What
palace is this? Who built it and who abideth in it?” Quoth the eunuch,
“The Wazir of a certain King built it to guard his daughter, fearing for
her the accidents of Time and the incidents of Fortune, and lodged her
herein, her and her attendants; nor do we open it save once in every
year, when their provision cometh to them.” And Uns al-Wujud said to
himself, “I have gained my end, though I may have long to wait.” Such
was his case; but as regards Rose-in-Hood, of a truth she took no
pleasure in eating or drinking, sitting or sleeping; but her desire and
passion and distraction redoubled on her, and she went wandering about
the castle-corners, but could find no issue; wherefore she shed tears
and recited these couplets:—

 They have cruelly ta’en me from him, my beloved, ✿ And made me taste
    anguish in prison ta’en:
 They have fired my heart with the flames of love, ✿ Barred all sight of
    him whom to see I’m fain:
 In a lofty palace they prisoned me ✿ On a mountain placed in the middle
 If they’d have me forget him, right vain’s their wish, ✿ For my love is
    grown of a stronger strain.
 How _can_ I forget him whose face was cause ✿ Of all I suffer, of all I
 The whole of my days in sorrow’s spent, ✿ And in thought of him through
    the night I’m lain.
 Remembrance of him cheers my solitude, ✿ While I lorn of his presence
    and lone remain.
 Would I knew if, after this all, my fate ✿ To oblige the desire of my
    heart will deign.

When her verses were ended, she ascended to the terrace-roof of the
castle after donning her richest clothes and trinkets and throwing a
necklace of jewels around her neck. Then binding together some dresses
of Ba’albak[67] stuff by way of rope, she tied them to the crenelles and
let herself down thereby to the ground. And she fared on over wastes and
waterless wilds, till she came to the shore, where she saw a fisherman
plying here and there over the sea, for the wind had driven him on to
the island. When he saw her, he was affrighted[68] and pushed off again,
flying from her; but she cried out and made pressing signs to him to
return, versifying with these couplets:—

 O fisherman no care hast thou to fear, ✿ I’m but an earth-born maid in
    mortal sphere;
 I pray thee linger and my prayer grant ✿ And to my true unhappy tale
    give ear:

 Pity (so Allah spare thee!) warmest love; ✿ Say, hast thou seen him—my
    beloved fere?
 I love a lovely youth whose face excels ✿ Sunlight, and passes moon when
    clearest clear:
 The fawn, that sees his glance, is fain to cry ✿ “I am his thrall” and
    own himself no peer:
 Beauty hath written, on his winsome cheek, ✿ Rare lines of pregnant
    sense for every seer;
 Who sights the light of love his soul is saved; ✿ Who strays is Infidel
    to Hell anear:
 An thou in mercy show his sight, O rare![69] ✿ Thou shalt have every
    wish, the dearest dear,
 Of rubies and what likest are to them ✿ Fresh pearls and unions new, the
    sea-shell’s tear:
 My friend, thou wilt forsure grant my desire ✿ Whose heart is melted in
    love’s hottest fire.

When the fisherman heard her words, he wept and made moan and lamented;
then, recalling what had betided himself in the days of his youth, when
love had the mastery over him and longing and desire and distraction
were sore upon him and the fires of passion consumed him, replied with
these couplets:—

 What fair excuse is this my pining plight, ✿ With wasted limbs and
    tears’ unceasing blight;
 And eyelids open in the nightly murk, ✿ And heart like fire-stick[70]
    ready fire to smite;
 Indeed love burdened us in early youth, ✿ And true from false coin soon
    we learned aright:
 Then did we sell our soul on way of love, ✿ And drunk of many a well[71]
    to win her sight;
 Venturing very life to gain her grace, ✿ And make high profit perilling
    a mite.
 ‘Tis Love’s religion whoso buys with life ✿ His lover’s grace, with
    highest gain is dight.

And when he ended his verse, he moored his boat to the beach and said to
her, “Embark, so may I carry thee whither thou wilt.” Thereupon she
embarked and he put off with her; but they had not gone far from land,
before there came out a stern-wind upon the boat and drove it swiftly
out of sight of shore. Now the fisherman knew not whither he went, and
the strong wind blew without ceasing three days, when it fell by leave
of Allah Almighty, and they sailed on and ceased not sailing till they
came in sight of a city sitting upon the sea-shore,——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

      Now when it was the Three Hundred and Seventy-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
fisherman’s craft, carrying Rose-in-Hood, made the city sitting upon the
sea shore, the man set about making fast to the land. Now the King of
the city was a Prince of pith and puissance named Dirbás, the Lion; and
he chanced at that moment to be seated, with his son, at a window in the
royal palace giving upon the sea; and happening to look out seawards,
they saw the fishing-boat make the land. They observed it narrowly and
espied therein a young lady, as she were the full moon overhanging the
horizon-edge, with pendants in her ears of costly balass-rubies and a
collar of precious stones about her throat. Hereby the King knew that
this must indeed be the daughter of some King or great noble and, going
forth of the sea-gate of the palace, went down to the boat, where he
found the lady asleep and the fisherman busied in making fast to shore.
So he went up to her and aroused her, whereupon she awoke, weeping; and
he asked her, “Whence comest thou and whose daughter art thou and what
be the cause of thy coming hither?”; and she answered, “I am the
daughter of Ibrahim, Wazir to King Shámikh; and the manner of my coming
hither is wondrous and the cause thereof marvellous.” And she told him
her whole story first and last, hiding naught from him; then she groaned
aloud and recited these couplets:—

 Tear-drops have chafed mine eyelids and rail down in wondrous wise, ✿
    For parting pain that fills my sprite and turns to springs mine eyes,
 For sake of friend who ever dwells within my vitals homed, ✿ And I may
    never win my wish of him in any guise.
 He hath a favour fair and bright, and brilliant is his face, ✿ Which
    every Turk and Arab wight in loveliness outvies:
 The Sun and fullest Moon lout low whenas his charms they sight, ✿ And
    lover-like they bend to him whene’er he deigneth rise.

 A wondrous spell of gramarye like Kohl bedecks his eyne, ✿ And shows
    thee bow with shaft on string made ready ere it flies:
 O thou, to whom I told my case expecting all excuse, ✿ Pity a
    lover-wight for whom Love-shafts such fate devise!
 Verily, Love hath cast me on your coast despite of me ✿ Of will now
    weak, and fain I trust mine honour thou wilt prize:
 For noble men, whenas perchance alight upon their bounds, ✿ Grace-worthy
    guests, confess their worth and raise to dignities.
 Then, O thou hope of me, to lovers’ folly veil afford ✿ And be to them
    reunion cause, thou only liefest lord!

And when she had ended her verses, she again told the King her sad tale
and shed plenteous tears and recited these couplets bearing on her

 We lived till saw we all the marvels Love can bear; ✿ Each month to thee
    we hope shall fair as Rajab[72] fare:
 Is it not wondrous, when I saw them march amorn ✿ That I with water o’
    eyes in heart lit flames that flare?
 That these mine eyelids rain fast dropping gouts of blood? ✿ That now my
    cheek grows gold where rose and lily were?
 As though the safflower hue, that overspread my cheeks, ✿ Were Joseph’s
    coat made stain of lying blood to wear.

Now when the King heard her words he was certified of her love and
longing and was moved to ruth for her; so he said to her, “Fear nothing
and be not troubled; thou hast come to the term of thy wishes; for there
is no help but that I win for thee thy will and bring thee to thy
desire.” And he improvised these couplets:—

 Daughter of nobles, who thine aim shalt gain; ✿ Hear gladdest news nor
    fear aught hurt or bane!
 This day I’ll pack up wealth, and send it on ✿ To Shámikh, guarded by a
 Fresh pods of musk I’ll send him and brocades, ✿ And silver white and
    gold of yellow vein:
 Yes, and a letter shall inform him eke ✿ That I of kinship with that
    King am fain:

 And I this day will lend thee bestest aid, ✿ That all thou covetest thy
    soul assain.
 I, too, have tasted love and know its taste ✿ And can excuse whoso the
    same cup drain.[73]

Then, ending his verse, he went forth to his troops and summoned his
Wazir; and, causing him to pack up countless treasure, commanded him
carry it to King Shamikh and say to him, “Needs must thou send me a
person named Uns al-Wujud;” and say moreover “The King is minded to ally
himself with thee by marrying his daughter to Uns al-Wujud, thine
officer. So there is no help but thou despatch him to me, that the
marriage may be solemnized in her father’s kingdom.” And he wrote a
letter to King Shamikh to this effect, and gave it to the Minister,
charging him strictly to bring back Uns al-Wujud and warning him, “An
thou fail thou shalt be deposed and degraded.” Answered the Wazir, “I
hear and obey;” and, setting out forthright with the treasures, in due
course arrived at the court of King Shamikh whom he saluted in the name
of King Dirbas and delivered the letter and the presents. Now when King
Shamikh read the letter and saw the name of Uns al-Wujud, he burst into
tears and said to the Wazir “And where, oh where, is Uns al-Wujud?; he
went from us and we know not his place of abiding; only bring him to me,
and I will give thee double the presents thou hast brought me.” And he
wept and groaned and lamented, saying these couplets:—

       To me restore my dear; ✿ I want not wealth untold:
       Nor crave I gifts of pearls ✿ Or gems or store of gold:
       He was to us a moon ✿ In beauty’s heavenly fold.
       Passing in form and soul; ✿ With roe compare withhold!
       His form a willow-wand, ✿ His fruit, lures manifold;
       But willow lacketh power ✿ Men’s hearts to have and hold.
       I reared him from a babe ✿ On cot of coaxing roll’d;
       And now I mourn for him ✿ With woe in soul ensoul’d.

Then, turning to the Wazir who had brought the presents and the missive,
he said, “Go back to thy liege and acquaint him that Uns al-Wujud hath
been missing this year past, and his lord knoweth not whither he is gone
nor hath any tidings of him.” Answered the Minister of King Dirbas, “O
my lord, my master said to me:—An thou fail to bring him back, thou
shalt be degraded from the Wazirate and shalt not enter my city. How
then can I return without him?” So King Shamikh said to his Wazir
Ibrahim, “Take a company and go with him and make ye search for Uns
al-Wujud everywhere.” He replied, “Hearkening and obedience;” and,
taking a body of his own retainers, set out accompanied by the Wazir of
King Dirbas seeking Uns al-Wujud.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Seventy-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Ibrahim, Wazir to
King Shamikh, took him a body of his retainers and, accompanied by the
Minister of King Dirbas, set out seeking Uns al-Wujud. And as often as
they fell in with wild Arabs or others they asked of the youth, saying,
“Tell us have ye seen a man whose name is so and so and his semblance
thus and thus?” But they all answered, “We know him not.” Still they
continued their quest enquiring in city and hamlet and seeking in
fertile plain and stony hall and in the wild and in the wold, till they
made the Mountain of the Bereaved Mother; and the Wazir of King Dirbas
said to Ibrahim, “Why is this mountain thus called?” He answered, “Once
of old time, here sojourned a Jinniyah, of the Jinn of China, who loved
a mortal with passionate love; and, being in fear of her life from her
own people, searched all the earth over for a place, where she might
hide him from them, till she happened on this mountain and, finding it
cut off from both men and Jinn, there being no access to it, carried off
her beloved and lodged him therein. There, when she could escape notice
of her kith and kin, she used privily to visit him, and continued so
doing till she had borne him a number of children; and the merchants,
sailing by the mountain, in their voyages over the main, heard the
weeping of the children, as it were the wailing of a woman bereft of her
babes, and said:—Is there here a mother bereaved of her children? For
which reason the place was named the Mountain of the Bereaved Mother.”
And the Wazir of King Dirbas marvelled at his words. Then they landed
and, making for the castle, knocked at the gate which was opened to them
by an eunuch, who knew the Wazir Ibrahim and kissed his hands. The
Minister entered and found in the courtyard, among the serving-men, a
Fakir, which was Uns al-Wujud, but he knew him not and said, “Whence
cometh yonder wight?” Quoth they, “He is a merchant, who hath lost his
goods, but saved himself; and he is an ecstatic.”[74] So the Wazir left
him and went on into the castle, where he found no trace of his daughter
and questioned her women, who answered, “We wot not how or whither she
went; this place misliked her and she tarried in it but a short time.”
Whereupon he wept sore and repeated these couplets:—

 Ho thou, the house, whose birds were singing gay, ✿ Whose sills their
    wealth and pride were wont display!
 Till came the lover wailing for his love, ✿ And found thy doors wide
    open to the way;
 Would Heaven I knew where is my soul that erst ✿ Was homed in house,
    whose owners fared away!
 ‘Twas stored with all things bright and beautiful, ✿ And showed its
    porters ranged in fair array:
 They clothed it with brocades a bride become;[75] ✿ Would I knew whither
    went its lords, ah, say!

After ending his verses he again shed tears, and groaned and bemoaned
himself, exclaiming, “There is no deliverance from the destiny decreed
by Allah; nor is there any escape from that which He hath predestined!”
Then he went up to the roof and found the strips of Ba’albak stuff tied
to the crenelles and hanging down to the ground, and thus it was he knew
that she had descended thence and had fled forth, as one distracted and
demented with desire and passion. Presently, he turned and seeing there
two birds, a gor-crow and an owl he justly deemed this an omen of ill;
so he groaned and recited these couplets:—

 I came to my dear friends’ door, of my hopes the goal, ✿ Whose sight
    mote assuage my sorrow and woes of soul:
 No friends found I there, nor was there another thing ✿ To find, save a
    corby-crow and an ill-omened owl.
 And the tongue o’ the case to me seemed to say, “Indeed ✿ This parting
    two lovers fond was cruel and foul!”
 “So taste thou the sorrow thou madest them taste and live ✿ In grief:
    wend thy ways and now in thy sorrow prowl!”

Then he descended from the castle-roof, weeping, and bade the servants
fare forth and search the mount for their mistress; so they sought for
her, but found her not. Such was their case; but as regards Uns
al-Wujud, when he was certified that Rose-in-Hood was indeed gone, he
cried with a great cry and fell down in a fainting-fit, nor came to
himself for a long time, whilst the folk deemed that his spirit had been
withdrawn by the Compassionating One; and that he was absorbed in
contemplation of the splendour, majesty and beauty of the Requiting One.
Then, despairing of finding Uns al-Wujud, and seeing that the Wazir
Ibrahim was distracted for the loss of his daughter, the Minister of
King Dirbas addressed himself to return to his own country, albeit he
had not attained the object of his journey, and while bidding his
companion adieu, said to him, “I have a mind to take the Fakir with me;
it may be Allah Almighty will incline the King’s heart to me by his
blessing, for that he is a holy man; and thereafter, I will send him to
Ispahan, which is near our country.” “Do as thou wilt,” answered
Ibrahim. So they took leave of each other and departed, each for his own
mother land, the Wazir of King Dirbas carrying with him Uns
al-Wujud——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

         Now when it was the Three Hundred and Eightieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Wazir of King
Dirbas carried with him Uns al-Wujud who was still insensible. They bore
him with them on mule-back (he unknowing if he were carried or not) for
three days, when he came to himself and said, “Where am I?” “Thou art in
company with the Minister of King Dirbas,” replied they and went and
gave news of his recovering to the Wazir, who sent him rose-water and
sherbet of sugar, of which they gave him to drink and restored him. Then
they ceased not faring on till they drew near King Dirbas’s capital and
the King, being advised of his Wazir’s coming, wrote to him, saying, “If
Uns al-Wujud be not with thee, come not to me ever.” Now when the Wazir
read the royal mandate, it was grievous to him, for he knew not that
Rose-in-Wood was with the King, nor why he had been sent in quest of Uns
al-Wujud, nor the King’s reason for desiring the alliance; whilst Uns
al-Wujud also knew not whither they were bearing him or that the Wazir
had been sent in quest of him; nor did the Wazir know that the Fakir he
had with him was Uns al-Wujud himself. And when the Minister saw that
the sick man was whole, he said to him, “I was despatched by the King on
an errand, which I have not been able to accomplish. So, when he heard
of my return, he wrote to me, saying:—Except thou have fulfilled my need
enter not my city.” “And what is the King’s need?” asked Uns al-Wujud.
So the Wazir told him the whole tale, and he said, “Fear nothing, but go
boldly to the King and take me with thee; and I will be surety to thee
for the coming of Uns al-Wujud.” At this the Wazir rejoiced and cried,
“Is this true which thou sayest?” “Yes,” replied he; whereupon the Wazir
mounted and carried him to King Dirbas who, after receiving their
salutations said to him, “Where is Uns al-Wujud?” Answered the young
man, “O King, I know where he is.” So the King called him to him and
said, “Where?” Returned Uns al-Wujud, “He is nearhand and very near; but
tell me what thou wouldst with him, and I will fetch him into thy
presence.” The King replied, “With joy and good gree, but the case
calleth for privacy.” So he ordered the folk to withdraw and, carrying
Uns al-Wujud into his cabinet, told him the whole story; whereupon quoth
the youth, “Robe me in rich raiment, and I will forthright bring Uns
al-Wujud to thee.” So they brought him a sumptuous dress, and he donned
it and said, “I am Uns al-Wujud, the World’s Delight, and to the envious
a despite”; and presently he smote with his glances every sprite, and
began these couplets to recite:—

 My loved one’s name in cheerless solitude aye cheereth me ✿ And driveth
    off my desperance and long despondency:

 I have no helper[76] but my tears that ever flow in fount, ✿ And as they
    flow, they lighten woe and force my grief to flee.
 My longing is so violent naught like it ere was seen; ✿ My love-tale is
    a marvel and my love a sight to see:
 I spend the night with lids of eye that never close in sleep, ✿ And pass
    in passion twixt the Hells and Edens heavenly.
 I had of patience fairish store, but now no more have I; ✿ And love’s
    sole gift to me hath been aye-growing misery:
 My frame is wasted by the pain of parting from my own, ✿ And longing
    changed my shape and form and made me other be.
 Mine eyelids by my torrent tears are chafed, and ulcerate, ✿ The tears,
    whose flow to stay is mere impossibility.
 My manly strength is sore impaired for I have lost my heart; ✿ How many
    griefs upon my griefs have I been doomed to dree!
 My heart and head are like in age with similar hoariness ✿ By loss of
    Beauty’s lord,[77] of lords the galaxy:
 Despite our wills they parted us and doomed us parted wone, ✿ While they
    (our lords) desire no more than love in unity.
 Then ah, would Heaven that I wot if stress of parting done, ✿ The world
    will grant me sight of them in union fain and free—
 Roll up the scroll of severance which others would unroll— ✿ Efface my
    trouble by the grace of meeting’s jubilee!
 And shall I see them homed with me and in cup-company, ✿ And change my
    melancholic mood for joy and jollity?

And when he ended his verses the King cried aloud, “By Allah, ye are
indeed a pair of lovers true and fain and in Beauty’s heaven of shining
stars a twain: your story is wondrous and your case marvellous.” Then he
told him all that had befallen Rose-in-Hood; and Uns al-Wujud said,
“Where is she, O King of the age?” “She is with me now,” answered Dirbas
and, sending for the Kazi and the witnesses, drew up the contract of
marriage between her and him. Then he honoured Uns al-Wujud with favours
and bounties and sent to King Shamikh acquainting him with what had
befallen, whereat this King joyed with exceeding joy and wrote back to
the following purport. “Since the ceremony of contract hath been
performed at thy court, it behoveth that the marriage and its
consummation be at mine.” Then he made ready camels, horses and men and
sent them in quest of the pair; and when the embassy reached King
Dirbas, he gave the lovers much treasure and despatched them to King
Shamikh’s court with a company of his own troops. The day of their
arrival was a notable day, never was seen a grander; for the King
gathered together all the singing-women and players on instruments of
music and made wedding banquets and held high festival seven days; and
on each day he gave largesse to the folk and bestowed on them sumptuous
robes of honour. Then Uns al-Wujud went in to Rose-in-Hood and they
embraced and sat weeping for excess of joy and gladness, whilst she
recited these couplets:—

 Joyance is come, dispelling cark and care; ✿ We are united, enviers may
 The breeze of union blows, enquickening ✿ Forms, hearts and vitals,
    fresh with fragrant air:
 The splendour of delight with scents appears, ✿ And round us[78] flags
    and drums show gladness rare.
 Deem not we’re weeping for our stress of grief; ✿ It is for joy our
    tears as torrents fare:
 How many fears we’ve seen that now are past! ✿ And bore we patient what
    was sore to bear:
 One hour of joyance made us both forget ✿ What from excess of terror
    grey’d our hair.

And when the verses were ended, they again embraced and ceased not from
their embrace, till they fell down in a swoon,——And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Eighty-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Uns al-Wujud and
Rose-in-Hood embraced when they foregathered and ceased not from their
embrace, till they fell down in a swoon for the delight of reunion; and
when they came to themselves, Uns al-Wujud recited these couplets:—

 How joyously sweet are the nights that unite, ✿ When my dearling deigns
    keep me the troth she did plight;
 When union conjoins us in all that we have, ✿ And parting is severed and
    sundered from sight,

 To us comes the world with her favour so fair, ✿ After frown and
    aversion and mighty despight!
 Hath planted her banner Good Fortune for us, ✿ And we drink of her cup
    in the purest delight.
 We have met and complained of the pitiful Past, ✿ And of nights a full
    many that doomed us to blight.
 But now, O my lady, the Past is forgot; ✿ The Compassionate pardon the
    Past for unright!
 How sweet is existence, how glad is to be! ✿ This union my passion doth
    only incite.

And when he ended his verses they once more embraced, drowned in the sea
of passion; and lay down together in the private apartment carousing and
conversing and quoting verses and telling pleasant tales and anecdotes.
On this wise seven days passed over them whilst they knew not night from
day and it was to them, for very stress of gaiety and gladness, pleasure
and possession, as if the seven days were but one day with ne’er a
morrow. Nor did they know the seventh day,[79] but by the coming of the
singers and players on instruments of music; whereat Rose-in-Hood beyond
measure wondered and improvised these couplets:—

 In spite of enviers’ jealousy, at end ✿ We have won all we hoped of the
 We’ve crowned our meeting with a close embrace ✿ On quilts where new
    brocades with sendal blend;
 On bed of perfumed leather, which the spoils ✿ Of downy birds
    luxuriously distend.
 But I abstain me from unneeded wine, ✿ When honey-dews of lips sweet
    must can lend:
 Now from the sweets of union we unknow ✿ Time near and far, if slow or
    fast it wend,
 The seventh night hath come and gone, O strange! ✿ How went the nights
    we never reckt or kenned;
 Till, on the seventh wishing joy they said, ✿ “Allah prolong the meet of
    friend with friend!”

When she had finished her song, Uns al-Wujud kissed her, more than an
hundred times, and recited these couplets:—

 O day of joys to either lover fain! ✿ The loved one came and freed from
    lonely pain:
 She blest me with all inner charms she hath; ✿ And companied with inner
    grace deep lain:
 She made me drain the wine of love till I, ✿ Was faint with joys her
    love had made me drain:
 We toyed and joyed and on each other lay; ✿ Then fell to wine and soft
    melodious strain:
 And for excess of joyance never knew, ✿ How went the day and how it came
 Fair fall each lover, may he union win ✿ And gain of joy like me the
    amplest gain;
 Nor weet the taste of severance’ bitter fruit ✿ And joys assain them as
    they us assain!

Then they went forth and distributed to the folk alms and presents of
money and raiment and rare gifts and other tokens of generosity; after
which Rose-in-Hood bade clear the bath for her[80] and, turning to Uns
al-Wujud said to him, “O coolth of my eyes, I have a mind to see thee in
the Hammam, and therein we will be alone together.” He joyfully
consented to this, and she let scent the Hammam with all sorts of
perfumed woods and essences, and light the wax-candles. Then of the
excess of her contentment she recited these couplets:—

 O who didst win my love in other date ✿ (And Present e’er must speak of
    past estate);
 And, oh! who art my sole sufficiency, ✿ Nor want I other friends with me
    to mate:
 Come to the Hammam, O my light of eyes, ✿ And enter Eden through
 We’ll scent with ambergris and aloes-wood ✿ Till float the heavy clouds
    with fragrant freight;
 And to the World we’ll pardon all her sins ✿ And sue for mercy the
 And I will cry, when I descry thee there, ✿ “Good cheer, sweet love, all
    blessings on thee wait!”[81]

Whereupon they arose and fared to the bath and took their pleasure
therein; after which they returned to their palace and there abode in
the fulness of enjoyment, till there came to them the Destroyer of
delights and the Sunderer of societies; and glory be to Him who changeth
not neither ceaseth, and to whom everything returneth! And they also
tell a tale of


Footnote 30:

  Lit. “The rose in the sleeves or calyces.” I take my English
  equivalent from Jeremy Taylor, “So I have seen a rose newly springing
  from the clefts of its hood,” etc.

Footnote 31:

  These lines are from the Bresl. Edit. (v. 35.) The four couplets in
  the Mac. Edit. are too irrelevant.

Footnote 32:

  Polo, which Lane calls “Goff.”

Footnote 33:

  Arab. “Muffawak” = well-notched, as its value depends upon the notch.
  At the end of the third hemistich Lane’s Shaykh very properly reads
  “baghtatan” (suddenly) for “burhatan” = during a long time.

Footnote 34:

  “Uns” (which the vulgar pronounce Anas) “al-Wujúd” = Delight of
  existing things, of being, of the world. Uns wa júd is the normal pun
  = love-intimacy and liberality; and the paronomasia (which cannot well
  be rendered in English) reappears again and again. The story is
  throughout one of love; hence the quantity of verse.

Footnote 35:

  The allusion to a “written N” suggests the elongated not the rounded
  form of the letter as in Night cccxxiv.

Footnote 36:

  The fourteenth Arabic letter in its medial form resembling an eye.

Footnote 37:

  This is done by the man passing his fingers over the brow as if to
  wipe off perspiration; the woman acknowledges it by adjusting her
  head-veil with both hands. As a rule in the Moslem East women make the
  first advances; and it is truly absurd to see a great bearded fellow
  blushing at being ogled. During the Crimean war the fair sex of
  Constantinople began by these allurements but found them so readily
  accepted by the Giaours that they were obliged to desist.

Footnote 38:

  The greatest of all explorers and discoverers of the world will be he
  who finds a woman confessing inability to keep a secret.

Footnote 39:

  The original is intensely prosaic—and so am I.

Footnote 40:

  Arab. “Sunnat,” the practice of the Prophet. For this prayer and other
  silly and superstitious means of discovering the “right direction”
  (which is often very wrongly directed) see Lane, M. E. chapt. xi.

Footnote 41:

  Arab. “Bahr” (sea or river) al-Kunúz: Lane (ii. 576) ingeniously
  identifies the site with the Upper Nile whose tribes, between Assouan
  (Syene) and Wady al-Subú’a are called the “Kunúz”—lit. meaning
  “treasures” or “hoards.” Philæ is still known as the “Islet of Anas
  (for Uns) al-Wujud;” and the learned and accurate Burckhardt (Travels
  in Nubia p. 5,) records the local legend that a mighty King called
  Al-Wujúd built the Osirian temples. I can give no information
  concerning Jabal al-Sakla, (Thaklá) the Mount of the woman bereft of
  children, beyond the legend contained in Night ccclxxix.

Footnote 42:

  A religious mendicant (lit. a pauper), of whom there are two great
  divisions. The Shara’í acts according to the faith: the others (Lá
  Shara’í, or irreligious) are bound by no such prejudices and are
  pretty specimen of scoundrels (Pilgrimage i. 22).

Footnote 43:

  Meaning his lips and palate were so swollen by drought.

Footnote 44:

  It is a pious act in time of mortal danger to face the Kiblah or
  Meccan temple, as if standing in prayer.

Footnote 45:

  Still the belief of the Badawi who tries to work upon the beast’s
  compassion: “O great King I am a poor man, with wife and family, so
  spare me that Allah spare thee!” and so forth. If not famished the
  lion will often stalk off looking behind him as he goes; but the man
  will never return by the same path; “for,” says he, “haply the Father
  of Roaring may repent him of a wasted opportunity.” These lion-tales
  are very common, witness that of Androcles at Rome and a host of
  others. Una and her lion is another phase. It remained for M. Jules
  Gérard, first the _chasseur_ and then the _tueur_, _du lion_, to
  assail the reputation of the lion and the honour of the lioness.

Footnote 46:

  Abú Háris = Father of spoils: one of the lion’s hundred titles.

Footnote 47:

  “They” again for “she.”

Footnote 48:

  Jaxartes and Oxus. The latter (Jayhun or Amu, Oxus or Bactros) is
  famous for dividing Iran from Turan, Persia from Tartaria. The lands
  to its north are known as Má wará al-Nahr (Mawerannahar) or “What is
  behind the stream,” = Transoxiana and their capitals were successively
  Samarcand and Bokhara.

Footnote 49:

  Arab. “Dání wa gharíb” = friend and foe. The lines are partly from the
  Mac. Edit. and partly from the Bresl. Edit., v. 55.

Footnote 50:

  Arab. “Wá Rahmatá-hu!” a form now used only in books

Footnote 51:

  Before noted. The relationship, like that of foster-brother, has its
  rights, duties and privileges.

Footnote 52:

  Arab. “Istikhárah,” before explained as praying for direction by omens
  of the rosary, opening the Koran and reading the first verse sighted,
  etc., etc. At Al-Medinah it is called Khírah and I have suggested
  (Pilgrimage, ii. 287) that it is a relic of the Azlam or Kidah
  (divining arrows) of paganism. But the superstition is not local: we
  have the Sortes Virgilianæ (Virgil being a magician) as well as

Footnote 53:

  Arab. Wujúd al-Habíb, a pun, also meaning, “Wujúd my beloved.”

Footnote 54:

  Arab. “Khilál,” as an emblem of attenuation occurring in Al-Hariri
  (Ass. of Alexandria, etc.); also thin as a spindle (Maghzal), as a
  reed, and dry as a pair of shears. In the Ass. of Barka’id the
  toothpick is described as a beautiful girl. The use of this cleanly
  article was enjoined by Mohammed:—“Cleanse your mouths with
  toothpicks; for your mouths are the abode of the guardian angels;
  whose pens are the tongues, and whose ink is the spittle of men; and
  to whom naught is more unbearable than remains of food in the mouth.”
  A mighty apparatus for a small matter; but in very hot lands
  cleanliness must rank before godliness.

Footnote 55:

  The sense is ambiguous. Lane renders the verse:—“Thou resemblest it
  (rose) not of my portion” and gives two explanations “because _he_ is
  of my portion,” or, “because _his_ cheek cannot be rosy if _mine_ is
  not.” Mr. Payne boldly translates—

  If the rose ape his cheek, “Now God forfend,” I say, “That of my
     portion aught to pilfer thou shouldst try.”

Footnote 56:

  Arab. “líf” (not “fibres which grow at the top of the trunk,” Lane ii.
  577); but the fibre of the fronds worked like the cocoa-nut fibre
  which forms the now well-known Indian “coir.” This “líf” is also
  called “filfil” or “fulfil” which Dr. Jonathan Scott renders “pepper”
  (Lane i. 8) and it forms a clean succedaneum for one of the uncleanest
  articles of civilisation, the sponge. It is used in every Hammam and
  is (or should be) thrown away after use.

Footnote 57:

  Arab. “Shinf;” a coarse sack, a “gunny-bag;” a net compared with such

Footnote 58:

  The eunuch tells him that he is not a “Sandalí” = one whose penis and
  testes are removed; and consequently the highest valued. There are
  many ways of making the castrato; in some (as here) only the penis is
  removed, in others the testes are bruised or cut off; but in all cases
  the animal passion remains, for in man, unlike other animals, the
  _fons veneris_ is the brain. The story of Abelard proves this. Juvenal
  derided the idea of married eunuchs and yet almost all these neutrals
  have wives with whom they practise the manifold _plaisirs de la petite
  oie_ (masturbation, tribadism, irrumation, tête-bêche,
  feuille-de-rose, etc.), till they induce the venereal orgasm. Such was
  the account once given to me by a eunuch’s wife; and I need hardly say
  that she, like her confrerie was to be pitied. At the critical moment
  she held up a little pillow for her husband to bite who otherwise
  would have torn her cheeks or breasts.

Footnote 59:

  In real life the eunuch, as a rule, avoids all allusion to his
  misfortune, although the slave will often describe his being sold
  merrily enough.

Footnote 60:

  The visits are in dreamland. The ringdove thanks the Lord for her
  (his?) suffering in the holy martyrdom of love.

Footnote 61:

  Arab. “Hazár;” I have explained it as meaning “(the bird of) a
  thousand (songs).”

Footnote 62:

  The “Bulbul” had his day with us but he departed with Tommy Moore. We
  usually English the word by “nightingale;” but it is a kind of shrike
  or butcher-bird (_Lanius Boulboul._ Lath.)

Footnote 63:

  The “Hamám” is a _lieu commun_ in Arabic poetry. I have noticed the
  world-wide reverence for the pigeon and the incarnation of the Third
  Person of the Hindu Triad (Shiva), as “Kapoteshwara (Kapota-ishwara)”
  = pigeon or dove-god (Pilgrimage iii. 218.)

Footnote 64:

  Arab. “Hamám al-Ayk.” Mr. Payne’s rendering is so happy that we must
  either take it from him or do worse.

Footnote 65:

  All primitive peoples translate the songs of birds with human
  language; but, as I have noticed, the versions differ widely. The
  pigeon cries, “Allah! Allah!” The dove “Karim, Tawwá” (Bountiful,
  Pardoner!) the Katá or sand-grouse “Man sakat salam” (who is silent is
  safe) yet always betrays itself by its lay of “Kat-ta” and lastly the
  cock “Uzkurú ‘llah ya gháfilún” (Remember, or take the name of Allah,
  ye careless!)

Footnote 66:

  “Nay,” the Dervish’s reed pipe, symbol of the sighing absent lover
  (i.e. the soul parted from the Creator) so famed by the Mullah-i-Rúm
  and Sir William Jones.

Footnote 67:

  Ba’albak = Ba’al (the God)-city (bek in Coptic and ancient Egyptian).
  Such, at least, is the popular derivation which awaits a better. No
  cloth has been made there since the Kurd tribe of gallant robbers
  known as the “Harfúsh” (or blackguards) lorded it over old

Footnote 68:

  Thinking her to be a Jinn or Ghul in the shape of a fair woman. This
  Arab is a strange contrast with the English fisherman, and yet he is
  drawn with truth.

Footnote 69:

  Arab. “Habbazá!” (good this!) or “Habba” (how good!): so “Habba bihi,”
  how dear he is to me.

Footnote 70:

  Arab. “Zind,” and Zindah the names of the two sticks, upper and lower,
  hard and soft, by which fire was kindled before flint and steel were
  known. We find it in Al-Hariri (Ass. of Banu Haram) “no one sought
  fire from my fire-stick (_i.e._ from me as a fire-stick) and failed.”
  See Night dccciii.

Footnote 71:

  Arab. “Názih” _i.e._ travelled far and wide.

Footnote 72:

  “Rajab,” lit. = “worshipping:” it is the seventh lunar month and still
  called “Shahr-ĭ-Khudá” (God’s month) by the Persians because in
  pre-Islamitic times it formed with Muharram (or in its stead Safar),
  Zu ‘l-ka’adah and Zu ‘l-Hijjah (Nos. 1 or 2; 7, 11 and 12) the yearly
  peace, during which a man might not kill his father’s murderer. The
  idea must have taken deep root, as Arab history records only six
  “impious (or sacrilegious) wars,” waged despite the law. Europeans
  compare it with the Treuga Dei (truce of God) a seven-years peace
  established about A.D. 1032, by a Bishop of Aquitaine; and followed in
  A.D. 1245 by the Pax Regis (Royal Peace) under Louis VIII. of France.
  This compelled the relations of a murdered man to keep the peace for
  forty days after the offence was committed.

Footnote 73:

  His Majesty wrote sad doggrel. He is better at finessing, and his
  message was a trick because Rose-in-Hood had told him that at home
  there were special obstacles to the marriage.

Footnote 74:

  Arab. “Majzub” = drawn, attracted (literally); the popular term for
  one absorbed in the contemplation of the Deity. During this process
  the soul is supposed to quit the body leaving the latter irresponsible
  for its actions. I remember a scandal being caused in a village near
  Tunis by one of these men who suddenly started up from his seat in a
  dusty corner and, in presence of a small crowd of people, had
  connection with a she-donkey. The supporters of the holy man declared
  that the deed was proof positive of his exceptional holiness; but
  there were lewd fellows, Moslems Voltaireans, who had their doubts and
  held that the reverend man had so acted “for the gallery.” A similar
  story is told with due reserve by the late Abbe Hamilton in his book
  on the Cyrenaic. There are three grand divisions of the Sufis; (1)
  Mukímán, the stationaries; (2) Sálikán, the travellers, or
  progressives, and (3) Wásilán, those who reach the desired end. And
  No. 2 has two classes: the Sálik-i-majzúb, one progressing in Divine
  Love; and the other, who has made greater progress, is the
  Majzúb-i-Sálik (Dabistan iii. 251).

Footnote 75:

  Arab. “Sundus,” a kind of brocade (low Lat. brocare, to figure cloth),
  silk worked in high relief with gold and silver. The idea is
  figurative meaning it was hung outside and inside with fine stuff,
  like the Ka’abah, the “Bride of Meccah.” The “lords” means simply the
  lost girl.

Footnote 76:

  Arab. “Ayn” lit. eye, also a fount, “the eye of the landscape” (a
  noble simile); and here a helper, guard, assistant.

Footnote 77:

  “Lord” for lady, _i.e._ she.

Footnote 78:

  Arab. “Fi’l-khawáfik” = in the four quarters or among the flappers
  (standards) or amid palpitations of heart. The bride alludes to a
  festal reception in a town, with burning incense, drums, flags, etc.,

Footnote 79:

  In Egypt the shorter “honey-moon” lasts a week; and on the seventh day
  (pop. called Al-Subú’a) bride and bridegroom receive visits with all
  ceremony, of course in separate apartments. The seventh day (like the
  fortieth, the end of six months and the anniversary) is kept for
  births and deaths with Khatmahs (perlections) of the Koran, “Saylah”
  family gatherings and so forth. The fortieth day ends the real
  honey-moon. See Night dccxcii.

Footnote 80:

  I have noted the popular practice, amongst men as well as women, of
  hiring the Hammam for private parties and picnicking in it during the
  greater part of the day. In this tale the bath would belong to the
  public and it was a mere freak of the bride to bathe with her
  bridegroom. “Respectable” people do not.

Footnote 81:

  She speaks in the last line as the barber or the bathman.


Abu Nowas one day shut himself up and, making ready a richly-furnished
feast, collected for it meats of all kinds and of every colour that lips
and tongue can desire. Then he went forth, to seek a minion worthy of
such entertainment, saying, “Allah, my Lord and my Master, I beseech
Thee to send me one who befitteth this banquet and who is fit to carouse
with me this day!” Hardly had he made an end of speaking when he espied
three youths handsome and beardless, as they were of the boys of
Paradise,[83] differing in complexion but fellows in incomparable
beauty; and all hearts yearned with desire to the swaying of their
bending shapes, even to what saith the poet:—

 I passed a beardless pair without compare ✿ And cried, “I love you, both
    you ferly fair!”
 “Money’d?” quoth one: quoth I, “And lavish too;” ✿ Then said the fair
    pair, _Père, c’est notre affaire_.

Now Abu Nowas was given to these joys and loved to sport and make merry
with fair boys and cull the rose from every brightly blooming cheek,
even as saith the bard:—

 Full many a reverend Shaykh feels sting of flesh, ✿ Loves pretty faces,
    shows at Pleasure’s depot:
 Awakes in Mosul,[84] land of purity; ✿ And all the day dreams only of

So he accosted them with the salutation, and they returned his greeting
with civility and all honour and would have gone their several ways, but
he stayed them, repeating these couplets:—

 Steer ye your steps to none but me ✿ Who hath a mine of luxury:—
 Old wine that shines with brightest blee ✿ Made by the monk in
 And mutton-meat the toothsomest ✿ And birds of all variety.
 Then eat of these and drink of those ✿ Old wines that bring you jollity:
 And have each other, turn by turn, ✿ Shampooing this my tool you

Thereupon the youths were beguiled by his verses and consented to his
wishes——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Eighty-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Abu Nowas
beguiled the youths with his verse, they consented to his wishes,
saying, “We hear and obey;” and accompanied him to his lodging, where
they found all ready that he had set forth in his couplets. They sat
down and ate and drank and made merry awhile, after which they appealed
to Abu Nowas to decide which of them was handsomest of face and
shapeliest of form. So he pointed to one of them and, having kissed him
twice over, recited the following verses:—

 I’ll ransom that beauty-spot with my soul; ✿ Where’s it and where is a
 Praise Him who hairless hath made that cheek ✿ And bid Beauty bide in
    that mole, that mole!

Then he pointed to another and, kissing his lips, repeated these

 And loveling weareth on his cheek a mole ✿ Like musk, which virgin
    camphor ne’er lets off it:
 My peepers marvel such a contrast seeing; ✿ And cried the Mole to me,
    “Now bless the Prophet.”[88]

Then he pointed to the third and, after kissing him half a score times
repeated these couplets:—

 Melted pure gold in silvern bowl to drain ✿ The youth, whose fingers
    wore a winey stain:
 He with the drawers[89] served one cup of wine, ✿ And served his
    wandering eyes the other twain.
 A loveling, of the sons of Turks,[90] a fawn ✿ Whose waist conjoins the
    double Mounts Honayn.[91]
 Could Eve’s corrupting daughters[92] tempt my heart ✿ Content with
    two-fold lure ‘twould bear the bane.
 Unto Diyar-i-Bakr (“maid-land”[93]) this one lures; ✿ That lures to
    two-mosqued cities of the plain.[94]

Now each of the youths had drunk two cups, and when it came to the turn
of Abu Nowas, he took the goblet and repeated these couplets:—

 Drink not strong wine save at the slender dearling’s hand; ✿ Each like
    to other in all gifts the spirit grace:
 For wine can never gladden toper’s heart and soul, ✿ Unless the cup-boy
    show a bright and sparkling face.

Then he drank off his cup and the bowl went round, and when it came to
Abu Nowas again, joyance got the mastery of him and he repeated these

 For cup-friends cup succeeding cup assign, ✿ Brimming with grape-juice,
    brought in endless line,
 By hand of brown-lipped[95] Beauty who is sweet ✿ At wake as apple or
    musk finest fine.[96]
 Drink not the wine except from hand of fawn ✿ Whose cheek to kiss is
    sweeter than the wine.

Presently the drink got into his noddle, drunkenness mastered him and he
knew not hand from head, so that he lolled from side to side in joy and
inclined to the youths one and all, anon kissing them and anon embracing
them leg overlying leg. And he showed no sense of sin or shame, but
recited these couplets:—

 None wotteth best joyance but generous youth ✿ When the pretty ones
    deign with him company keep:
 This sings to him, sings to him that, when he wants ✿ A pick-me-up[97]
    lying there all of a heap:
 And when of a loveling he needeth a kiss, ✿ He takes from his lips or a
    draught or a nip;
 Heaven bless them! How sweetly my day with them sped; ✿ A wonderful
    harvest of pleasure I reap:
 Let us drink our good liquor both watered and pure, ✿ And agree to swive
    all who dare slumber and sleep.

While they were in this deboshed state behold, there came a knocking at
the door; so they bade him who knocked enter, and behold, it was the
Commander of the Faithful, Harun al-Rashid. When they saw him, they all
rose and kissed ground before him; and Abu Nowas threw off the fumes of
the wine for awe of the Caliph, who said to him, “Holla, Abu Nowas!” He
replied, “Adsum, at thy service, O Commander of the Faithful, whom Allah
preserve!” The Caliph asked, “What state is this?” and the poet
answered, “O Prince of True Believers, my state indubitably dispenseth
with questions.” Quoth the Caliph, “O Abu Nowas, I have sought direction
of Allah Almighty and have appointed thee Kazi of pimps and panders.”
Asked he, “Dost thou indeed invest me with that high office, O Commander
of the Faithful?” and the Caliph answered “I do;” whereupon Abu Nowas
rejoined, “O Commander of the Faithful, hast thou any suit to prefer to
me?” Hereat the Caliph was wroth and presently turned away and left
them, full of rage, and passed the night sore an-angered against Abu
Nowas, who amid the party he had invited spent the merriest of nights
and the jolliest and joyousest. And when daybreak dawned and the star of
morn appeared in sheen and shone, he broke up the sitting and,
dismissing the youths, donned his court-dress and leaving his house set
out for the palace of the Caliph. Now it was the custom of the Commander
of the Faithful, when the Divan broke up, to withdraw to his
sitting-saloon and summon thither his poets and cup-companions and
musicians, each having his own place, which he might not overpass. So it
happened that day, he retired to his saloon, and the friends and
familiars came and seated themselves, each in his rank and degree.
Presently, in walked Abu Nowas and was about to take his usual seat,
when the Caliph cried to Masrur, the sworder, and bade him strip the
poet of his clothes and bind an ass’s packsaddle on his back and a
halter about his head and a crupper under his rump and lead him round to
all the lodgings of the slave-girls,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Eighty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Caliph
commanded Masrur, the sworder, to strip Abu Nowas of his court-suit and
bind an ass’s packsaddle on his back and a halter about his head, and a
crupper under his rump and lead him round to all the lodgings of the
slave-girls, and the chambers of the Harim, that the women might make
mock of him; then cut off his head and bring it to him. “Hearkening and
obedience,” replied Masrur and, doing with Abu Nowas as the Caliph had
bidden him, led him round all the chambers whose number equalled the
days of the year; but Abu Nowas was a funny fellow, so he made all the
girls laugh with his buffooneries and each gave him something whereby he
returned not save with a pocketful of money. And while this was going on
behold, Ja’afar the Barmecide, who had been absent on an important
business for the Commander of the Faithful, entered and recognising the
poet, albeit in this plight, said to him, “Holla, Abu Nowas!” He said,
“Here at thy service, O our lord.” Ja’afar asked, “What offence hast
thou committed to bring this punishment on thee?” Thereupon he answered,
“None whatsoever, except that I made our lord the Caliph a present of
the best of my poetry and he presented me, in return, with the best of
his raiment.” When the Prince of True Believers heard this, he laughed,
from a heart full of wrath,[98] and pardoned Abu Nowas, and also gave
him a myriad of money. And they also recount the tale of


Footnote 82:

  Here the “Ana” begin; and they mostly date themselves. Of the
  following forty-nine, Lane (vol. ii. p. 578 et seq.) gives only
  twenty-two and transfers them to notes in chapt. xviii. He could
  hardly translate several of them in a work intended to be popular. Abu
  Nowás is a person carefully to be avoided; and all but anthropological
  students are advised to “skip” over anecdotes in which his name and
  abominations occur.

Footnote 83:

  Arab. “Ghilmán,” the counterpart, I have said, of the so-called

Footnote 84:

  Mosul boasts of never having been polluted with idolatrous worship, an
  exemption which it owes to being a comparatively modern place.

Footnote 85:

  The Aleppines were once noted for debauchery; and the saying is still
  “Halabi Shelebi” (for Chelebi) = the Aleppine is a fellow fine.

Footnote 86:

  Mr. Payne omits the last line. It refers to what Persian boys call, in
  half-Turkish phrase, “Alish Takish,” each acting woman after he has
  acted man. The best wine is still made in monasteries and the
  so-called Sinai convent is world-famous for its “Ráki” distilled from

Footnote 87:

  _i.e._ what a difference there is between them!

Footnote 88:

  Arab. “Salli ala ‘l-Nabi,” a common phrase; meaning not only praise
  him to avert the evil eye; but also used when one would impose silence
  upon a babbler. The latter will shuffle off by ejaculating “Al” and
  continue his chatter (Pilgrimage ii. 279).

Footnote 89:

  Arab. “Sukát” (plur. of Sáki, cupbearer, our old “skinker”): the pure
  gold (tibr) is the amber-coloured wine, like the Vino d’oro of the

Footnote 90:

  That is, fair, white and red: Turkish slaves then abounded at Baghdad.

Footnote 91:

  A Wady near Meccah where one of Mohammed’s battles was fought. The
  line means his waist is a thread connected broad breast and large hind

Footnote 92:

  Arab. “Zaurá” which may mean crooked, alluding to the well-known rib.

Footnote 93:

  A pun. Bakr was the name of the eponymous chief and it also means
  virgin, as in Abu Bakr.

Footnote 94:

  Arab. “Jámi’ayn” = two cathedrals, any large (and consequently
  vicious) city.

Footnote 95:

  Arab. “Almá,” before noticed: I cannot translate “damask-lipped” to
  suit European taste.

Footnote 96:

  Sherbet flavoured with musk or apple to cool the mouth of “hot

Footnote 97:

  Arab. “In’ásh” lit. raising from his bier. The whole tone is
  rollicking and slangy.

Footnote 98:

  _i.e._ In spite of himself: the phrase often occurs.


A certain man of Bassorah once bought a slave-girl and reared and
educated her right well. Moreover, he loved her very dearly and spent
all his substance in pleasuring and merry-making with her, till he had
naught left and extreme poverty was sore upon him. So she said to him,
“O my master, sell me; for thou needest my price and it maketh my heart
ache to see thy sorry and want-full plight. If thou vend me and make use
of my value, ‘twill be better for thee than keeping me by thee, and
haply Almighty Allah will ample thee and amend thy fortune.” He agreed
to this for the straitness of his case, and carried her to the bazar,
where the broker offered her for sale to the Governor of Bassorah, by
name Abdallah bin Ma’amar al-Taymi, and she pleased him. So he bought
her, for five hundred dinars and paid the sum to her master; but when he
took the money and was about to go away, the girl burst into tears and
repeated these two couplets:—

 May coins thou gainest joy in heart instil; ✿ For me remaineth naught
    save saddest ill:
 I say unto my soul which sorely grieves, ✿ “Thy friend departeth an thou
    will or nill.”

And when her master heard this, he groaned and replied in these

 Albeit this thy case lack all resource, ✿ Nor findest aught but death’s
    doom, pardon still:
 Evening and morning, thoughts of thee will dole ✿ Comfort to heart all
    woes and griefs full fill:
 Peace be upon thee! meet we now no more ✿ Nor pair except at Ibn
    Ma’amar’s will.

Now when Abdullah bin Ma’amar heard these verses and saw their
affection, he exclaimed, “By Allah, I will not assist fate in separating
you; for it is evident to me that ye two indeed love each other. So take
the money and the damsel, O man, and Allah bless thee in both; for
verily parting be grievous to lovers.” So they kissed his hand and going
away, ceased not to dwell together, till death did them part; and glory
be to Him whom death over-taketh not! And amongst stories is that of

                   THE LOVERS OF THE BANU[99] OZRAH.

There was once, among the Banu ‘Ozrah, a handsome and accomplished man,
who was never a single day out of love, and it chanced that he became
enamoured of a beauty of his own tribe and sent her many messages; but
she ceased not to entreat him with cruelty and disdain; till, for stress
of love and longing and desire and distraction, he fell sick of a sore
sickness and took to his pillow and murdered sleep. His malady redoubled
on him and his torments increased and he was well nigh dead when his
case became known among the folk and his passion notorious——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Eighty-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the man took to
his pillow and murdered sleep. So his case became known among the folk
and his passion notorious; and his infirmity grew upon him and his pains
redoubled till he was well nigh dead. His family and hers were urgent
with her to visit him, but she refused, till he was at the point of
death when, being told of this, she relented towards him and vouchsafed
him a visit. As soon as he saw her, his eyes ran over with tears and he
repeated from a broken heart:—

 An, by thy life, pass thee my funeral train, ✿ A bier upborne upon the
    necks of four,
 Wilt thou not follow it, and greet the grave ✿ Where shall my corpse be
    graved for evermore?

Hearing this, she wept with sore weeping and said to him, “By Allah, I
suspected not that passion had come to such a pass with thee, as to cast
thee into the arms of death! Had I wist of this, I had been favourable
to thy wish, and thou shouldst have had thy will.” At this his tears
streamed down even as the clouds rail rain, and he repeated this verse:—

 She drew near whenas death was departing us, ✿ And deigned union grant
    when ‘twas useless all.

Then he groaned one groan and died. So she fell on him, kissing him and
weeping and ceased not weeping till she swooned away; and when she came
to herself, she charged her people to bury her in his grave and with
streaming eyes recited these two couplets:-

 We lived on earth a life of fair content; ✿ And tribe and house and home
    of us were proud;
 But Time in whirling flight departed us, ✿ To join us now in womb of
    earth and shroud.[100]

Then she fell again to weeping, nor gave over shedding tears and
lamenting till she fainted away; and she lay three days, senseless. Then
she died and was buried in his grave. This is one of the strange chances
of love.[101] And I have heard related a tale of the


Footnote 99:

  Europeans usually write “Beni” for “Banu;” the oblique for the
  nominative. I prefer “Odhrah” or “Ozrah” to Udhrah; because the Ayn
  before the Zál takes in pronunciation the more open sound.

Footnote 100:

  Possibly meaning that they were shrouded together; this would be
  opposed to Moslem sense of decorum in modern days, but the ancient
  were not so squeamish. See Night cccxi.

Footnote 101:

  This phase of passion in the “varium et mutabile” is often treated of
  by Oriental story-tellers, and not unoften seen in real Eastern life.


It is said that Badr al-Din, Wazir of Al-Yaman, had a young brother of
singular beauty and kept strait watch over him; so he applied himself to
seek a tutor for him and, coming upon a Shaykh of dignified and reverend
aspect, chaste and religious, lodged him in a house next his own. This
lasted a long time, and he used to come daily from his dwelling to that
of Sáhib[102] Badr al-Din and teach the young brother. After a while,
the old man’s heart was taken with love for the youth, and longing grew
upon him and his vitals were troubled, till one day, he bemoaned his
case to the boy, who said, “What can I do, seeing that I may not leave
my brother night or day? and thou thyself seest how careful he is over
me.” Quoth the Shaykh, “My lodging adjoineth thine; so there will be no
difficulty, when thy brother sleepeth, to rise and entering the privy,
feign thyself asleep. Then come to the parapet[103] of the terrace-roof
and I will receive thee on the other side of the wall; so shalt thou sit
with me an eye-twinkling and return without thy brother’s knowledge.” “I
hear and obey,” answered the lad; and the tutor began to prepare gifts
suitable to his degree. Now when a while of the night was past, he
entered the water-closet and waited till his brother lay down on his bed
and took patience till he was drowned in sleep, when he rose and going
to the parapet of the terrace-roof, found standing there to await him
the old man, who gave him his hand and carried him to the
sitting-chamber, where he had made ready various dainties for his
entertainment, and they sat down to carouse. Now it was the night of the
full moon and, as they sat with the wine-cup going round, her rays shone
upon them, and the governor fell to singing. But, whilst they were thus
in joy and jollity and mirth and merriment, such as confoundeth the wit
and the sight and defieth description, lo! the Wazir awoke and, missing
his brother, arose in affright and found the door open. So he went up to
the roof and hearing a noise of talk, climbed over the parapet to the
adjoining terrace and saw a light shining from the lodging. He looked in
from behind the wall, and espied his brother and his tutor sitting at
carouse: but the Shaykh became aware of him and sang cup in hand, to a
lively measure these couplets:—

 He made me drain his wine of honeyed lips, ✿ Toasting with cheeks which
    rose and myrtle smother:
 Then nighted in embrace, cheek to my cheek, ✿ A loveling midst mankind
    without another.
 When the full moon arose on us and shone ✿ Pray she traduce us not to
    the big brother.

And it proved the perfect politeness of the Wazir Badr al-Din that, when
he heard this, he said, “By Allah, I will not betray you!” And he went
away and left them to their diversions. They also tell a tale concerning


Footnote 102:

  As has been said, “Sáhib” (preceding the name not following it as in
  India) is a Wazirial title in mediæval Islam.

Footnote 103:

  This parapet was rendered obligatory by Moses (Deut. xxii. 8) on
  account of the danger of leaving a flat roof without _garde-fou_.
  Eastern Christians neglect the precaution and often lose their
  children by the neglect.


A free boy and a slave-girl once learnt together in school, and the boy
fell passionately in love with the girl.——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Eighty-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the lad fell
passionately in love with the slave-lass: so one day, when the other
boys were heedless, he took her tablet[104] and wrote on it these two

 What sayest thou of him by sickness waste, ✿ Until he’s clean distraught
    for love of thee?
 Who in the transport of his pain complains, ✿ Nor can bear load of heart
    in secrecy?

Now when the girl took her tablet, she read the verses written thereon
and understanding them, wept for ruth of him; then she wrote thereunder
these two couplets:—

 An if we behold a lover love-fordone ✿ Desiring us, our favours he shall
 Yea, what he wills of us he shall obtain, ✿ And so befal us what
    befalling be.

Now it chanced that the teacher came in on them and taking the tablet,
unnoticed, read what was written thereon. So he was moved to pity of
their case and wrote on the tablet beneath those already written these
two couplets addressed to the girl:—

 Console thy lover, fear no consequence; ✿ He is daft with loving lowe’s
 But for the teacher fear not aught from him; ✿ Love-pain he learnèd long
    before learnt ye.

Presently it so happened that the girl’s owner entered the school about
the same time and, finding the tablet, read the above verses indited by
the boy, the girl and the schoolmaster; and wrote under them these two

 May Allah never make you parting dree ✿ And be your censurer shamèd
 But for the teacher ne’er, by Allah, eye ✿ Of mine beheld a bigger pimp
    than he!

Then he sent for the Kazi and witnesses and married them on the spot.
Moreover, he made them a wedding-feast and treated them with exceeding
munificence; and they ceased not abiding together in joy and happiness,
till there came to them the Destroyer of delights and the Severer of
societies. And equally pleasant is the story of


Footnote 104:

  Arab. “Lauh.” A bit of thin board washed white used for lessons as
  slates are amongst us, and as easily cleaned because the inks contain
  no minerals. It is a long parallelogram with triangular ears at the
  short sides; and the shape must date from ages immemorial as it is
  found, throughout Syria and its adjoinings, in the oldest rock
  inscriptions to which the form serves as a frame. Hence the “abacus”
  or counting table derives from the Gr. ἄβαζ a slab (or in Phenician
  “sand”), dust or sand in old days having been strewed on a table or
  tablet for schoolboys’ writings and mathematical diagrams.


It is related that Al-Mutalammis[105] once fled from Al-Nu’uman bin
Munzir[106] and was absent so long that folk deemed him dead. Now he had
a beautiful wife, Umaymah by name, and her family urged her to marry
again; but she refused, for that she loved her husband Al-Mutalammis
very dearly. However, they were urgent with her, because of the
multitude of her suitors, and importuned her till she at last consented,
albe reluctantly; and they espoused her to a man of her own tribe. Now
on the night of the wedding, Al-Mutalammis came back and, hearing in the
camp a noise of pipes and tabrets and seeing signs of a wedding
festival, asked some of the children what was the merry making, to which
they replied, “They have married Umaymah wife of Al-Mutalammis, to such
an one, and he goes in to her this night.” When he heard this, he
planned to enter the house amongst the mob of women and saw the twain
seated on the bridal couch.[107] By and by, the bridegroom came up to
her, whereupon she sighed heavily and weeping, recited this couplet:—

 Would Heaven I knew (but many are the shifts of joy and woe) ✿ In what
    far distant land thou art, my Mutalammis, oh!

Now Al-Mutalammis was a renowned poet; so he answered her saying:—

 Right near at hand, Umaymah mine! whene’er the caravan ✿ Halted, I never
    ceased for thee to pine, I would thou know.

When the bridegroom heard this, he guessed how the case stood and went
forth from among them in haste improvising:—

 I was in bestest luck, but now my luck goes contrary: ✿ A hospitable
    house and room contain your loves, you two!

And he returned not but left the twain to their privacy. So
Al-Mutalammis and his wife abode together in all comfort and solace of
life and in all its joys and jollities till death parted them. And glory
be to Him at whose command the earth and the heavens shall arise! And
among other tales is that of


Footnote 105:

  A pre-Islamitic bard and friend of Tarafah the poet of the Suspended
  or “Prize Poem.” The tale is familiar to all the Moslem East.
  Tarafah’s Laura was one Khaulá.

Footnote 106:

  King of Hirah in Chaldæa, a drunken and bloodthirsty tyrant. When
  offended by the lampoons of the two poets he sent them with litteræ
  Bellerophontiæ to the Governor of Al-Bahrayn. Al-Mutalammis “smelt a
  rat” and destroyed his charge, but Tarafah was mutilated and buried
  alive, the victim of a trick which is old as (and older than) good
  King David and Uriah. Of course neither poet could read.

Footnote 107:

  On this occasion, and in presence of the women only, the groom first
  sees or is supposed to see the face of his wife. It is, I have said,
  the fashion for both to be greatly overcome and to appear as if about
  to faint: the groom looks especially ridiculous when so


The Caliph Harun al-Rashid loved the Lady Zubaydah with exceeding love
and laid out for her a pleasaunce, wherein he made a great tank and set
thereabouts a screen of trees and led thither water from all sides;
hence the trees grew and interlaced over the basin so densely, that one
could go in and wash, without being seen of any, for the thickness of
the leafage. It chanced, one day, that Queen Zubaydah entered the garden
and, coming to the swimming-bath,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Eighty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Queen Zubaydah
entered the garden one day and, coming to the swimming-bath, gazed upon
its goodliness; and the sheen of the water and the overshading of the
trees pleased her. Now it was a day of exceeding heat; so she doffed her
clothes and, entering the tank, which was not deep enough to cover the
whole person, fell to pouring the water over herself from an ewer of
silver. It also happened that the Caliph heard she was in the pool; so
he left his palace and came down to spy upon her through the screen of
the foliage. He stood behind the trees and espied her mother-nude,
showing everything that is kept hidden. Presently, she became aware of
him and turning, saw him behind the trees and was ashamed that he should
see her naked. So she laid her hands on her parts, but the Mount of
Venus escaped from between them, by reason of its greatness and
plumpness; and the Caliph at once turned and went away, wondering and
reciting this couplet:—

    I looked on her with loving eyne ✿ And grew anew my old repine:

But he knew not what to say next; so he sent for Abu Nowas and said to
him, “Make me a piece of verse commencing with this line.” “I hear and
obey,” replied the poet and in an eye-twinkling extemporised these

 I looked on her with longing eyne ✿ And grew anew my old repine
 For the gazelle, who captured me ✿ Where the two lotus-trees incline:
 There was the water poured on it ✿ From ewer of the silvern mine;
 And seen me she had hidden it ✿ But ‘twas too plump for fingers fine.
 Would Heaven that I were on it, ✿ An hour, or better two hours,

Thereupon the Commander of the Faithful smiled and made him a handsome
present and he went away rejoicing. And I have heard another story of


Footnote 108:

  This leisurely operation of the “deed of kind” was sure to be noticed;
  but we do not find in The Nights any allusion to that systematic
  _prolongatio veneris_ which is so much cultivated by Moslems under the
  name Imsák = retention, withholding _i.e._ the semen. Yet Eastern
  books on domestic medicine consist mostly of two parts; the first of
  general prescriptions and the second of aphrodisiacs especially those
  _qui prolongent le plaisir_ as did the Gaul by thinking of _sa pauvre
  mère_. The Ananga-Ranga, by the Reverend Koka Pandit before quoted,
  gives a host of recipes which are used, either externally or
  internally, to hasten the paroxysm of the woman and delay the orgasm
  of the man (p. 27). Some of these are curious in the extreme. I heard
  of a Hindi who made a candle of frogs’ fat and fibre warranted to
  retain the seed till it burned out: it failed notably because, relying
  upon it, he worked too vigorously. The essence of the “retaining art”
  is to avoid over-tension of the muscles and to pre-occupy the brain:
  hence in coition Hindus will drink sherbet, chew betel-nut and even
  smoke. Europeans ignoring the science and practice, are contemptuously
  compared with village-cocks by Hindu women who cannot be satisfied,
  such is their natural coldness, increased doubtless by vegetable diet
  and unuse of stimulants, with less than twenty minutes. Hence too
  while thousands of Europeans have cohabited for years with and have
  had families by “native women,” they are never loved by them:—at least
  I never heard of a case.


The Prince of True Believers, Caliph Harun al-Rashid, was exceeding
restless one night; so he rose and walked about his palace, till he
happened on a handmaid overcome with wine. Now he was prodigiously
enamoured of this damsel; so he played with her and pulled her to him,
whereupon her zone fell down and her petticoat-trousers were loosed and
he besought her of amorous favour. But she said to him, “O Commander of
the Faithful wait till to-morrow night, for I am unprepared for thee,
knowing not of thy coming.” So he left her and went away. But, when the
morrow showed its light and the sun shone bright, he sent a page to her
saying, “The Commander of the Faithful is about to visit thine
apartment;” but she replied, “Day doth away with the promise of night.”
So he said to his courtiers, make me somewhat of verse, introducing
these words, “The promise of Night is effaced by Day.” Answered they,
“We hear and obey,” and Al-Rakáshi[109] came forward and recited the
following couplets:—

 By Allah, couldst thou but feel my pain, ✿ Thy rest had turned and had
    fled away.

 Hath left me in sorrow and love distraught, ✿ Unseen and unseeing, that
    fairest may:
 She promised me grace, then jilted and said, ✿ “The promise of night is
    effaced by day!”

Then Abu Mus’ab came forward and recited these couplets:—

 When wilt thou be wise and love-heat allay ✿ That from food and sleeping
    so leads astray?
 Suffices thee not ever weeping eye, ✿ And vitals on fire when thy name
    they say?
 He must smile and laugh and in pride must cry ✿ “The promise of Night is
    effaced by Day.”

Last came Abu Nowas and recited the following couplets:—

 As love waxt longer less met we tway ✿ And fell out, but ended the
    useless fray;
 One night in the palace I found her fou’; ✿ Yet of modesty still there
    was some display:
 The veil from her shoulders had slipt; and showed ✿ Her loosened
    trousers Love’s seat and stay:
 And rattled the breezes her huge hind cheeks ✿ And the branch where two
    little pomegranates lay:
 Quoth I, “Give me tryst;” whereto quoth she ✿ “To-morrow the fane shall
    wear best array:”
 Next day I asked her, “Thy word?” Said she ✿ “The promise of Night is
    effaced by Day.”

The Caliph bade give a myriad of money each to Al-Rakashi and Abu
Mus’ab, but bade strike off the head of Abu Nowas, saying, “Thou wast
with us yesternight in the palace.” Said he, “By Allah, I slept not but
in my own house! I was directed to what I said by thine own words as to
the subject of the verse; and indeed quoth Almighty Allah (and He is the
truest of all speakers):—As for poets (devils pursue them!) dost thou
not see that they rove as bereft of their senses through every valley
and that they say that which they do not?”[110] So the Caliph forgave
him and gave him two myriads of money. And another tale is that of


Footnote 109:

  Abu ‘l Abbas al-Rakáshi, a poet of the time. The saying became
  proverbial (Burckhardt’s A. Proverbs No. 561) and there are variants,
  _e.g._ The night’s promise is spread with butter that melteth when day

Footnote 110:

  Koran xxvi. 5, 6 or “And those who err (Arab. Al-gháwún) follow the
  footsteps of the poets,” etc.


It is told of Mus’ab bin al-Zubayr[111] that he met in Al-Medinah Izzah,
who was one of the shrewdest of women, and said to her, “I have a mind
to marry Ayishah[112] daughter of Talhah, and I should like thee to go
her-wards and spy out for me how she is made.” So she went away and
returning to Mus’ab, said, “I have seen her, and her face is fairer than
health; she hath large and well-opened eyes and under them a nose
straight and smooth as a cane; oval cheeks and a mouth like a cleft
pomegranate, a neck as a silver ewer and below it a bosom with two
breasts like twin-pomegranates and further down a slim waist and a
slender stomach with a navel therein as it were a casket of ivory, and
back parts like a hummock of sand; and plumply rounded thighs and calves
like columns of alabaster; but I saw her feet to be large, and thou wilt
fall short with her in time of need.” Upon this report he married
her——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

      Now when it was the Three Hundred and Eighty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Izzah this
wise reported of Ayishah bint Talhah, Mus’ab married her and went in to
her. And presently Izzah invited Ayishah and the women of the tribe
Kuraysh to her house, when Ayishah sang these two couplets with Mus’ab
standing by:—

 And the lips of girls, that are perfume sweet; ✿ So nice to kiss when
    with smiles they greet:
 Yet ne’er tasted I them, but in thought of him; ✿ And by thought the
    Ruler rules worldly seat.

The night of Mus’ab’s going in unto her, he departed not from her, till
after seven bouts; and on the morrow, a freedwoman of his met him and
said to him, “May I be thy sacrifice! Thou art perfect, even in this.”
And a certain woman said, “I was with Ayishah, when her husband came in
to her, and she lusted for him; so he fell upon her and she snarked and
snorted and made use of all manner of wondrous movements and marvellous
new inventions, and I the while within hearing.” So, when he came out
from her, I said to her, “How canst thou do thus with thy rank and
nobility and condition, and I in thy house?” Quoth she, “Verily a woman
should bring her husband all of which she is mistress, by way of
excitement and rare buckings and wrigglings and motitations.[113] What
dislikest thou of this?” And I answered “I would have this by nights.”
Rejoined she, “Thus is it by day and by night I do more than this; for
when he seeth me, desire stirreth him up and he falleth in heat; so he
putteth it out to me and I obey him, and it is as thou seest.” And there
also hath reached me an account of


Footnote 111:

  Half-brother of Abdullah bin al-Zubayr, the celebrated pretender.

Footnote 112:

  Grand-daughter of the Caliph Abu Bakr and the most beautiful woman of
  her day.

Footnote 113:

  The Calc. Edit. by mistake reads “Izzah.” Torrens (notes i.-xi.)
  remarks “The word _Ghoonj_ is applied to this sort of blandishment”
  (_i.e._ an affected gait), and says Burckhardt (Prov. No. 685), “The
  women of Cairo flatter themselves that their _Ghoonj_ is superior to
  that of all other females in the Levant.” But Torrens did not
  understand and Burckhardt would not explain “Ghunj” except by “assumed
  airs” (see No. 714). It here means the art of moving in coition, which
  is especially affected, even by modest women, throughout the East and
  they have many books teaching the genial art. In China there are
  professors, mostly old women, who instruct young girls in this branch
  of the gymnastic.

                    ABU AL-ASWAD AND HIS SLAVE-GIRL.

Abu al-Aswad bought a native-born slave-girl, who was blind of an eye,
and she pleased him; but his people decried her to him; whereat he
wondered and, turning the palms of his hands upwards,[114] recited these
two couplets:—

 They find me fault with her where I default ne’er find, ✿ Save haply
    that a speck in either eye may show:
 But if her eyes have fault, of fault her form hath none, ✿ Slim-built
    above the waist and heavily made below.

And this is also told of


Footnote 114:

  When reciting the Fátihah (opening Koranic chapter), the hands are
  held in this position as if to receive a blessing falling from Heaven;
  after which both palms are passed down the face to distribute it over
  the eyes and other organs of sense.


The Caliph Harun al-Rashid lay one night between two slave-girls, one
from Al-Medinah and the other from Cufa and the Cufite rubbed his hands,
whilst the Medinite rubbed his feet and made his concern[115] stand up.
Quoth the Cufite, “I see thou wouldst keep the whole of the
stock-in-trade to thyself; give me my share of it.” And the other
answered, “I have been told by Málik, on the authority of Hishám ibn
Orwah,[116] who had it of his (grand) father, that the Prophet said,
“Whoso quickeneth the dead, the dead belongeth to him and is his.”” But
the Cufite took her unawares and, pushing her away, seized it all in her
own hand and said, “Al-A’amash telleth us, on the authority of
Khaysamah, who had it of Abdallah bin Mas’úd, that the Prophet declared,
Game belongeth to him who taketh it, not to him who raiseth it.” And
this is also related of


Footnote 115:

  The word used is “bizá’at” = capital or a share in a mercantile

Footnote 116:

  This and the following names are those of noted traditionists of the
  eighth century, who derive back to Abdallah bin Mas’úd, a “Companion
  of the Apostle.” The text shows the recognised formula of ascription
  for quoting a “Hadís” = saying of Mohammed; and sometimes it has to
  pass through half a dozen mouths.


The Caliph Harun al-Rashid once slept with three slave-girls, a Meccan,
a Medinite and an Irakite. The Medinah girl put her hand to his yard and
handled it, whereupon it rose and the Meccan sprang up and drew it to
herself. Quoth the other, “What is this unjust aggression? A tradition
was related to me by Málik[117] after Al-Zuhri, after Abdallah ibn
Sálim, after Sa’íd bin Zayd, that the Apostle of Allah (whom Allah bless
and keep!) said:—Whoso enquickeneth a dead land, it is his.” And the
Meccan answered, “It is related to us by Sufyán, from Abu Zanád, from
Al-A’araj, from Abu Horayrah, that the Apostle of Allah said:—“The
quarry is his who catcheth it, not his who starteth it.”” But the Irak
girl pushed them both away and taking it to herself, said, “This is
mine, till your contention be decided.” And they tell a tale of


Footnote 117:

  Traditionists of the seventh and eighth centuries who refer back to
  the “Father of the Kitten” (Abu Horayrah), an uncle of the Apostle.

                        THE MILLER AND HIS WIFE.

There was a miller, who had an ass to turn his mill; and he was married
to a wicked wife, whom he loved, while she hated him because she was
sweet upon a neighbour, who misliked her and held aloof from her. One
night, the miller saw, in his sleep, one who said to him, “Dig in such a
spot of the ass’s round in the mill, and thou shalt find a hoard.” When
he awoke, he told his wife the vision and bade her keep the secret; but
she told her neighbour——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Eighty-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the miller’s wife
told the secret to the neighbour whom she loved, thinking to win his
favour; and he agreed with her to come to her by night. So he came and
they dug in the mill and found the treasure and took it forth. Then he
asked her, “How shall we do with this?” and she answered; “We will
divide it into two halves and will share it equally between us, and do
thou leave thy wife and I will cast about to rid me of my husband. Then
shalt thou marry me and, when we are conjoined, we will join the two
halves of the treasure one to other, and all will be in our hands.”
Quoth he, “I fear lest Satan seduce thee and thou take some man other
than myself; for gold in the house is like the sun in the world. I reck,
therefore, it were right that the money be all in my hands, so thou give
thy whole mind to getting free of thy husband and coming to me.” Quoth
she, “I fear even as thou fearest, nor will I yield up my part to thee;
for it was I directed thee to it.” When he heard this, greed of gain
prompted him to kill her; so he slew her and threw her body into the
empty hoard-hole; but day overtook him and hindered him from covering it
up; he therefore took the money and went his way. Now after a while the
miller awoke and, missing his wife, went into the mill, where he
fastened the ass to the beam and shouted to it. It went on a little,
then stopped; whereupon he beat it grievously; but the more he bashed
it, the more it drew back; for it was affrighted at the dead woman and
could not go forward. Thereupon the Miller, unknowing what hindered the
donkey, took out a knife and goaded it again and again, but still it
would not budge. Then he was wroth with it, knowing not the cause of its
obstinacy, and drove the knife into its flanks, and it fell down dead.
But when the sun rose, he saw his donkey lying dead and likewise his
wife in the place of the treasure, and great was his rage and sore his
wrath for the loss of his hoard and the death of his wife and his ass.
All this came of his letting his wife into his secret and not keeping it
to himself.[118] And I have heard this tale of


Footnote 118:

  Eastern story-books abound in these instances. Pilpay says in “Kalilah
  wa Dimnah,” “I am the slave of what I have spoken and the lord of what
  I keep hidden.” Sa’adi follows suit, “When thou speakest not a word,
  thou hast thy hand upon it; when it is once spoken it hath laid its
  hand on thee.” Caxton, in the “Dyctes, or Sayings of Philosophers”
  (printed in 1477) uses almost the same words.

                     THE SIMPLETON AND THE SHARPER.

A certain simpleton was once walking along, haling his ass after him by
the halter, when a pair of sharpers saw him and one said to his fellow,
“I will take that ass from yonder wight.” Asked the other, “How wilt
thou do that?” “Follow me and I will show thee how,” answered the first.
So the cony-catcher went up to the ass and, loosing it from the halter,
gave the beast to his fellow; then he haltered his own head and followed
Tom Fool till he knew the other had got clean off with the ass, when he
stood still. The oaf haled at the halter, but the rascal stirred not; so
he turned and seeing the halter on a man’s neck, said to him, “What art
thou?” Quoth the sharper, “I am thine ass and my story is a wondrous one
and ‘tis this. Know that I have a pious old mother and came in to her
one day, drunk; and she said to me:—O my son, repent to the Almighty of
these thy transgressions. But I took my staff and beat her, whereupon
she cursed me and Allah changed me into an ass and caused me fall into
thy hands, where I have remained till this moment. However, to-day, my
mother called me to mind and her heart yearned towards me; so she prayed
for me and the Lord restored me to my former shape amongst the sons of
Adam.” Cried the silly one, “There is no Majesty and there is no Might
save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great! Allah upon thee, O my brother,
acquit me of what I have done with thee in the way of riding and so
forth.” Then he let the cony-catcher go and returned home, drunken with
chagrin and concern as with wine. His wife asked him, “What aileth thee
and where is the donkey?”; and he answered, “Thou knowest not what was
this ass; but I will tell thee.” So he told her the story, and she
exclaimed, “Alack and alas for the punishment we shall receive from
Almighty Allah! How could we have used a man as a beast of burden, all
this while?” And she gave alms by way of atonement and prayed pardon of
Heaven.[119] Then the man abode awhile at home, idle and feckless, till
she said to him, “How long wilt thou sit at home doing naught? Go to the
market and buy us an ass and ply thy work with it.” Accordingly, he went
to the market and stopped by the ass-stand, where behold, he saw his own
ass for sale. So he went up to it and clapping his mouth to its ear,
said to it, “Woe to thee, thou ne’er-do-well! Doubtless thou hast been
getting drunk again and beating thy mother! But, by Allah, I will never
buy thee more!”[120] And he left it and went away. And they tell a tale


Footnote 119:

  _i.e._ for her husband’s and her sin in using a man like a beast.

Footnote 120:

  See the Second Lady’s story (tantôt Kadi, tantôt bandit), pp. 20–26 by
  my friend Yacoub Artin Pasha in the Bulletin before quoted, series ii.
  No. 4 of 1883. The sharpers’ trick is common in Eastern folk-lore, and
  the idea that underlies is always metempsychosis or metamorphosis. So,
  in the Kalilah was Dimnah (new Syriac), the three rogues persuade the
  ascetic that he is leading a dog not a sheep.


The Caliph Harun al-Rashid went up one noontide to his couch, to lie
down; and mounting, found upon the bed-clothes semen freshly emitted;
whereat he was startled and troubled with sore trouble. So he called the
Lady Zubaydah and said to her, “What is that spilt on the bed?” She
looked at it and replied, “O Commander of the Faithful, it is semen.”
Quoth he, “Tell me truly what this meaneth or I will lay violent hands
on thee forthright.” Quoth she, “By Allah, O Commander of the Faithful,
indeed I know not how it came there and I am guiltless of that whereof
thou suspectest me.” So he sent for the Kazi Abú Yúsuf and acquainted
him of the case. The Judge raised his eyes to the ceiling and, seeing a
crack therein, said to the Caliph, “O Commander of the Faithful, in very
sooth the bat hath seed like that of a man,[121] and this is bat’s
semen.” Then he called for a spear and thrust it into the crevice,
whereupon down fell the bat. In this manner the Caliph’s suspicions were
dispelled——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Eighty-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Kazi Abu
Yusuf took the spear and thrust it into the crevice, down fell the bat,
and thus the Caliph’s suspicions were dispelled and the innocence of
Zubaydah was made manifest; whereat she gave loud and liberal vent to
her joy and promised Abu Yusuf a magnificent reward. Now there were with
her certain delicious fruits, out of their season, and she knew of
others in the garden; so she asked Abu Yusuf, “O Imam of the Faith,
which wouldest thou rather have of the two kinds of fruits, those that
are here or those that are not here?” And he answered, “Our code
forbiddeth us to pronounce judgment on the absent; wheneas they are
present, we will give our decision.” So she let bring the two kinds of
fruits before him; and he ate of both. Quoth she, “What is the
difference between them?” and quoth he, “As often as I think to praise
one kind, the adversary putteth in its claim.” The Caliph laughed at his
answer[122] and made him a rich present; and Zubaydah also gave him what
she had promised him, and he went away, rejoicing. See, then the virtues
of this Imám and how at his hands were manifest the truth and the
innocence of the Lady Zubaydah. And amongst other stories is that of


Footnote 121:

  This is the popular prejudice and it has doubtless saved many a
  reputation. The bat is known to Moslems as the Bird of Jesus, a legend
  derived by the Koran from the Gospel of Infancy (I chapt. xv. Hone’s
  Apocryphal New Testament), in which the boy Jesus amuses himself with
  making birds of clay and commanding them to fly when (according to the
  Moslems) they became bats. These Apocryphal Gospels must be carefully
  read, if the student would understand a number of Moslem allusions to
  the Injíl which no Evangel contains.

Footnote 122:

  Because it quibbled a way out of every question, a truly diplomatic


The Caliph Al-Hákim bi-Amri’llah was riding out in state procession one
day, when he passed along a garden, wherein he saw a man, surrounded by
negro-slaves and eunuchs. He asked him for a draught of water, and the
man gave him to drink, saying, “Belike, the Commander of the Faithful
will honour me by alighting in this my garden.” So the Caliph dismounted
and with his suite entered the garden; whereupon the said man brought
out to them an hundred rugs and an hundred leather mats and an hundred
cushions; and set before them an hundred dishes of fruits, an hundred
bowls of sweetmeats and an hundred jars of sugared sherbets; at which
the Caliph marvelled with much amaze and said to his host, “O man,
verily this thy case is wondrous: didst thou know of our coming and make
this preparation for us?” He replied, “No, by Allah, O Commander of the
Faithful, I knew not of thy coming and I am a merchant of the rest of
thy subjects; but I have an hundred concubines; so, when the Commander
of the Faithful honoured me by alighting with me, I sent to each of
them, bidding her send me her morning-meal in the garden. So they sent
me each of her furniture and the surplus of her meat and drink: and
every day each sendeth me a dish of meat and another of cooling
marinades, also a platter of fruits and a bowl of sweetmeats and a jar
of sherbet. This is my noonday dinner, nor have I added aught thereto
for thee.” Then the Commander of the Faithful, Al-Hakim bi-Amri’llah
prostrated himself in thanksgiving to the Almighty (extolled and exalted
be His name!) and said, “Praised be Allah, who hath been so bountiful to
one of our lieges, that he entertaineth the Caliph and his host, without
making ready for them; nay, he feedeth them with the surplusage of his
day’s provision!” Then he sent for all the dirhams in the treasury, that
had been struck that year (and they were in number three thousand and
seven hundred thousand); nor did he mount till the money came, when he
gave it to the merchant, saying, “Use this as thy state may require; and
thy generosity deserveth more than this.” Then he took horse and rode
away. And I have heard a story concerning


Footnote 123:

  This Caliph, the orthodox Abbaside of Egypt (A.D. 1261) must not be
  confounded with the Druze-god, the heretical Fatimite (A.D. 996–1021).
  D’Herbelot (“Hakem”) gives details. Mr. S. L. Poole (The Academy,
  April 26, ‘79) is very severe on the slip of Mr. Payne.


The just King, Kisrà Anúshirwán one day rode forth to the chase and, in
pursuit of a deer, became separated from his suite. Presently, he caught
sight of a hamlet near hand and being sore athirst, he made for it and
presenting himself at the door of a house that lay by the wayside, asked
for a draught of water. So a damsel came out and looked at him; then,
going back into the house, pressed the juice from a single sugar-cane
into a bowl and mixed it with water; after which she strewed on the top
some scented stuff, as it were dust, and carried it to the King.
Thereupon he seeing in it what resembled dust, drank it, little by
little, till he came to the end; when said he to her, “O damsel, the
drink is good, and how sweet it had been but for this dust in it that
troubleth it.” Answered she, “O guest, I put in that powder for a
purpose;” and he asked, “And why didst thou thus?”; so she replied, “I
saw thee exceeding thirsty and feared that thou wouldst drain the whole
at one draught and that this would do thee mischief; and but for this
dust that troubled the drink so hadst thou done.” The Just King wondered
at her words, knowing that they came of her wit and good sense, and said
to her, “From how many sugar canes didst thou express this draught?”
“One,” answered she; whereat Anushirwan marvelled and, calling for the
register of the village taxes, saw that its assessment was but little
and bethought him to increase it, on his return to his palace, saying in
himself, “A village where they get this much juice out of one
sugar-cane, why is it so lightly taxed?” He then left the village and
pursued his chase; and, as he came back at the end of the day, he passed
alone by the same door and called again for drink; whereupon the same
damsel came out and, knowing him at a look, went in to fetch him water.
It was some time before she returned and Anushirwan wondered thereat and
said to her, “Why hast thou tarried?”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Three Hundred and Ninetieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Anushirwan
hurried the damsel and asked her, “Why hast thou tarried?” she answered,
“Because a single sugar-cane gave not enough for thy need; so I pressed
three; but they yielded not so much as did one before.” Rejoined he,
“What is the cause of that?”; and she replied, “The cause of it is that
when the Sultan’s[125] mind is changed against a folk, their prosperity
ceaseth and their good waxeth less.” So Anushirwan laughed and dismissed
from his mind that which he had purposed against the villagers.
Moreover, he took the damsel to wife then and there, being pleased with
her much wit and acuteness and the excellence of her speech. And they
tell another tale of the


Footnote 124:

  The beautiful name is Persian “Anúshín-rawán” = Sweet of Soul; and the
  glorious title of this contemporary of Mohammed is “Al-Malik al-Adil”
  = the Just King. Kisra, _the_ Chosroë per excellentiam, is also
  applied to the godly Guebre of whom every Eastern dictionary gives

Footnote 125:

  “Sultan” is here an anachronism: I have noted that the title was first
  assumed independently by Mohammed of Ghazni after it had been
  conferred by the Caliph upon his father the Amír Al-Umará (Mayor of
  the Palace), Sabuktagin A.D. 974.


There was once, in the city of Bokhara, a water-carrier, who used to
carry water to the house of a goldsmith and had done this thirty years.
Now that goldsmith had a wife of exceeding beauty and loveliness,
brilliancy and perfect grace; and she was withal renowned for piety,
chastity and modesty. One day the water-carrier came, as of custom, and
poured the water into the cisterns. Now the woman was standing in the
midst of the court; so he went close up to her and taking her hand,
stroked it and pressed it, then went away and left her. When her husband
came home from the bazar, she said to him, “I would have thee tell me
what thing thou hast done in the market this day, to anger Almighty
Allah.” Quoth he, “I have done nothing to offend the Lord.” “Nay,”
rejoined she, “but, by Allah, thou hast indeed done something to anger
Him; and, unless thou tell me the whole truth, I will not abide in thy
house, and thou shalt not see me, nor will I see thee.” So he confessed,
“I will tell thee the truth of what I did this day. It so chanced that,
as I was sitting in my shop, as of wont, a woman came up to me and bade
me make her a bracelet of gold. Then she went away and I wrought her a
bracelet and laid it aside. But when she returned and I brought her out
the bracelet, she put forth her hand and I clasped the bracelet on her
wrist; and I wondered at the whiteness of her hand and the beauty of her
wrist, which would captivate any beholder; and I recalled what the poet

 Her fore-arms, dight with their bangles, show ✿ Like fire ablaze on the
    waves a-flow;
 As by purest gold were the water girt, ✿ And belted around by a living

So I took her hand and pressed it and squeezed it.” Said the woman,
“Great God! Why didst thou this ill thing? Know that the water-carrier,
who hath come to our house these thirty years, nor sawst thou ever any
treason in him, took my hand this day and pressed and squeezed it.” Said
her husband, “O woman, let us crave pardon of Allah! Verily, I repent of
what I did, and do thou ask forgiveness of the Lord for me.” She cried,
“Allah pardon me and thee, and receive us into his holy keeping.”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Ninety-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the goldsmith’s
wife cried out, “Allah pardon me and thee, and receive us into his holy
keeping!” And on the next day, the water-carrier came in to the
jeweller’s wife and, throwing himself at her feet, grovelled in the dust
and besought pardon of her, saying, “O my lady, acquit me of that which
Satan deluded me to do; for it was he that seduced me and led me
astray.” She answered, “Go thy ways, the sin was not in thee, but in my
husband, for that he did what he did in his shop, and Allah hath
retaliated upon him in this world.” And it is related that the
goldsmith, when his wife told him how the water-carrier had used her,
said, “Tit for tat, and blow for blow!; had I done more the
water-carrier had done mo’e”;—which became a current byword among the
folk. Therefore it behoveth a wife to be both outward and inward with
her husband; contenting herself with little from him, if he cannot give
her much, and taking pattern by Ayishah the Truthful and Fatimah the
virgin mother (Allah Almighty accept of them twain!), that she may be of
the company of the righteous ancestry.[127] And I have heard the
following tale of


Footnote 126:

  The “Sakká” or water-carrier race is peculiar in Egypt and famed for
  trickery and intrigue. Opportunity here as elsewhere makes the thief.

Footnote 127:

  A famous saying of Mohammed is recorded when an indiscretion of his
  young wife Ayishah was reported to him, “There be no adultress without
  an adulterer (of a husband).” Fatimah the Apostle’s daughter is
  supposed to have remained a virgin after bearing many children: this
  coarse symbolism of purity was known to the classics (Pausanias), who
  made Juno recover her virginity by bathing in a certain river every
  year. In the last phrase, “Al-Salaf” (ancestry) refers to Mohammed and
  his family.


King Khusrau[128] Shahinshah of Persia loved fish; and one day, as he
sat in his saloon, he and Shirin his wife, there came a fisherman, with
a great fish, and he laid it before the King, who was pleased and
ordered the man four thousand dirhams.[129] Thereupon Shirin said to the
King, “Thou hast done ill.” Asked he, “And why?”, and she answered,
“Because if, after this, thou give one of thy courtiers a like sum, he
will disdain it and say:—He hath but given me the like of what he gave
the fisherman. And if thou give him less, the same will say:—He
despiseth me and giveth me less than he gave the fisherman.” Rejoined
Khusrau, “Thou art right, but it would dishonour a king to go back on
his gift; and the thing is done.” Quoth Shirin, “If thou wilt, I will
contrive thee a means to get it back from him.” Quoth he, “How so?”; and
she said, “Call back, if thou so please, the fisherman and ask him if
the fish be male or female. If he say, Male, say thou, We want a female,
and if he say, Female, say, We want a male.” So the King sent for the
fisherman, who was a man of wit and acuteness, and said to him, “Is this
fish male or female?” whereupon the fisherman kissed the ground and
answered, “This fish is an hermaphrodite,[130] neither male nor female.”
Khusrau laughed at his clever reply and ordered him other four thousand
dirhams. So the fisherman went to the treasurer and, taking his eight
thousand dirhams, put them in a sack he had with him. Then, throwing it
over his shoulder, he was going away, when he dropped a dirham; so he
laid the bag off his back and stooped down to pick it up. Now the King
and Shirin were looking on, and the Queen said, “O King, didst thou note
the meanness of the man, in that he must needs stoop down to pick up the
one dirham, and could not bring himself to leave it for any of the
King’s servants?” When the King heard these words, he was exceeding
wroth with the fisherman and said, “Thou art right, O Shirin!” So he
called the man back and said to him, “Thou low-minded carle! Thou art no
man! How couldst thou put the bag with all this money off thy back and
bend thee groundwards to pick up the one dirham and grudge to leave it
where it fell?” Thereupon the fisherman kissed the earth before him and
answered, “May Allah prolong the King’s life! Indeed, I did not pick up
the dirham off the ground because of its value in my eyes; but I raised
it off the earth because on one of its faces is the likeness of the King
and on the other his name; and I feared lest any should unwittingly set
foot upon it, thus dishonouring the name and presentment of the King,
and I be blamed for this offence.” The King wondered at his words and
approved of his wit and shrewdness, and ordered him yet other four
thousand dirhams. Moreover, he bade cry abroad in his kingdom, saying,
“It behoveth none to be guided by women’s counsel; for whoso followeth
their advice, loseth, with his one dirham, other twain.”[131] And here
is the tale they tell of


Footnote 128:

  Khusrau Parwiz, grandson of Anushirwan, the Guebre King who tore his
  kingdom by tearing Mohammed’s letter married the beautiful Maria or
  Irene (in Persian “Shírín” = the sweet) daughter of the Greek Emperor
  Maurice: their loves were sung by a host of poets; and likewise the
  passion of the sculptor Farhád for the same Shirin. Mr. Lyall writes
  “Parwêz” and holds “Parwíz” a modern form.

Footnote 129:

  He could afford it according to historians. His throne was supported
  by 40,000 silver pillars; and 1,000 globes, hung in the dome, formed
  an orrery, showing the motion of the heavenly bodies; 30,000 pieces of
  embroidered tapestry overhung the walls and below were vaults full of
  silver, gold and gems.

Footnote 130:

  Arab. “Khunsá,” meaning also a catamite as I have explained. Lane (ii.
  586). has it; “This fish is of a mixed kind” (!).

Footnote 131:

  So the model lovers became the ordinary married couple.


Yahya bin Khálid the Barmecide was returning home, one day, from the
Caliph’s palace, when he saw, at the gate of his mansion, a man who rose
as he drew near and saluted him, saying, “O Yahyá, I am in sore need of
that which is in thy hand, and I make Allah my intermediary with thee.”
So Yahya caused a place to be set apart for him in his house and bade
his treasurer carry him a thousand dirhams every day and ordered that
his diet be of the choicest of his own meat. The man abode in this case
a whole month, at the end of which time, having received in all thirty
thousand dirhams, and fearing lest Yahya should take the money from him,
because of the greatness of the sum, he departed by stealth——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Ninety-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the man, taking
with him the money, departed by stealth. But when they told Yahya of
this, he said, “By Allah, though he had tarried with me to the end of
his days, yet had I not stinted him of my largesse nor cut off from him
the bounties of my hospitality!” For, indeed, the excellences of the
Barmecides were past count nor can their virtues be committed to
description, especially those of Yahya bin Khalid, for he was an
Ocean[132] of noble qualities, even as saith the poet of him:—

 I asked of Bounty, “Art thou free?” Quoth she, ✿ “No, I am slave to
    Yahyá Khálid-son!”
 “Boughten?” asked I. “Allah forfend,” quoth she, ✿ “By heirship, sire to
    sire’s transmission!”

And the following is related of


Footnote 132:

  Arab. “Jamm.” Heb. “Yamm.” Al-Haríri (Ass. of Sinjar and Sáwah) uses
  the rare form Yam for sea or ocean.


Ja’afar bin Musá al-Hádi[133] once had a slave-girl, a lutist, called
Al-Badr al-Kabír, than whom there was not in her time a fairer of face
nor shapelier of shape nor a more elegant of manners nor a more
accomplished in the art of singing and striking the strings; she was
indeed perfect in beauty and extreme in every charm. Now Mohammed
al-Amín,[134] son of Zubaydah, heard of her and was urgent with Ja’afar
to sell her to him; but he replied, “Thou knowest it beseemeth not one
of my rank to sell slave-girls nor set prices on concubines; but were
she not a rearling I would send her to thee, as a gift, nor grudge her
to thee.” And Mohammed al-Amin, some days after this went to Ja’afar’s
house, to make merry; and the host set before him that which it behoveth
to set before true friends and bade the damsel Al-Badr al-Kabir sing to
him and gladden him. So she tuned the lute and sang with a ravishing
melody; whilst Mohammed al-Amin fell to drinking and jollity and bade
the cupbearers ply Ja’afar with much wine, till they made him drunken,
when he took the damsel and carried her to his own house, but laid not a
finger on her. And when the morrow dawned he bade invite Ja’afar; and
when he came, he set wine before him and made the girl sing to him, from
behind the curtain. Ja’afar knew her voice and was angered at this, but,
of the nobleness of his nature and the magnanimity of his mind he showed
no change. Now when the carousal was at an end, Al-Amin commanded one of
his servants to fill the boat, wherein Ja’afar had come, with dirhams
and dinars and all manner of jewels and jacinths and rich raiment and
goods galore. So he laid therein a thousand myriads of money and a
thousand fine pearls, each worth twenty thousand dirhams; nor did he
give over loading the barge with all manner of things precious and rare,
till the boatmen cried out for help, saying, “The boat can’t hold any
more;” whereupon he bade them carry all this to Ja’afar’s palace. Such
are the exploits of the magnanimous, Allah have mercy on them! And a
tale is related of


Footnote 133:

  Al-Hadi, immediate predecessor of Harun al-Rashid, called “Al-Atbik”:
  his upper lip was contracted and his father placed a slave over him
  when in childhood, with orders to say, “Musa! atbik!” (draw thy lips
  together) when he opened his mouth.

Footnote 134:

  Immediate successor of Harun al-Rashid. Al-Amin is an imposing
  physical figure, fair, tall, handsome and of immense strength;
  according to Al-Mas’údi, he killed a lion with his own hands; but his
  mind and judgment were weak. He was fond of fishing; and his reply to
  the courtier bringing important news, “Confound thee! leave me! for
  Kausar (an eunuch whom he loved) hath caught two fish and I none,”
  reminds one of royal frivolity in France.


(Quoth Sa’íd bin Sálim al-Báhilí[135]), I was once in very narrow case,
during the days of Harun al-Rashid, and debts accumulated upon me,
burdening my back, and these I had no means of discharging. I was at my
wits’ end what to do, for my doors were blocked up with creditors and I
was without cease importuned for payment by claimants, who dunned me in
crowds till at last I was sore perplexed and troubled. So I betook
myself to Abdallah bin Málik al-Khuza’í[136] and besought him to extend
the hand of aid with his judgment and direct me of his good counsel to
the door of relief; and he said, “None can save thee from this thy
strait and sorrowful state save the Barmecides.” Quoth I, “Who can brook
their pride and put up patiently with their arrogant pretensions?” and
quoth he, “Thou wilt put up with all this for the bettering of thy
case.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Ninety-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Abdallah ibn Malik
al-Khuza’i said to Sa’id bin Salim, “Thou wilt put up with all this for
the bettering of thy case.” So I left him suddenly (continued Sa’id) and
went straight to Al-Fazl and Ja’afar, sons of Yahyá bin Khálid, to whom
I related my circumstances; whereto they replied, “Allah give thee His
aid, and render thee by His bounties independent of His creatures and
vouchsafe thee abundant weal and bestow on thee what shall suffice thee,
without the need of any but Himself; for whatso He willeth that He can,
and He is gracious with His servants and knoweth their wants.” So I went
out from the twain and returned to Abdallah, with straitened breast and
mind perplexed and heavy of heart, and repeated to him what they had
said. Quoth he, “Thou wouldst do well to abide with us this day, that we
may see what Allah Almighty will decree.” So I sat with him awhile, when
lo! up came my servant, who said to me, “O my lord, there are at our
door many laden mules, and with them a man, who says he is the agent of
Al-Fazl and Ja’afar bin Yahya.” Quoth Abdallah, “I trust that relief is
come to thee: rise up and go see what is the matter.” So I left him and,
hastening to my house, found at the door a man who gave me a note
wherein was written the following:—“After thou hadst been with us and we
heard thy case, we betook ourselves to the Caliph and informed him that
ill condition had reduced thee to the humiliation of begging; whereupon
he ordered us to supply thee with a thousand thousand dirhams from the
Treasury. We represented to him: The debtor will spend this money in
paying off creditors and wiping off debt; whence then shall he provide
for his subsistence? So he ordered thee other three hundred thousand,
and each of us hath also sent thee, of his proper wealth, a thousand
thousand dirhams: so that thou hast now three thousand thousand and
three hundred thousand dirhams wherewithal to order and amend thine
estate.” See, then, the munificence of these magnificos: Almighty Allah
have mercy on them! And a tale is told of


Footnote 135:

  Afterwards governor in Khorasan under Al-Maamun.

Footnote 136:

  Intendant of the palace under Harun al-Rashid.


A man brought his wife a fish one Friday and, bidding her cook it
against the end of the congregational prayers, went out to his craft and
business. Meanwhile in came her friend who bade her to a wedding at his
house; so she agreed and laying the fish in a jar of water, went off
with him and was absent a whole week till the Friday following;[137]
whilst her husband sought her from house to house and enquired after
her; but none could give him any tidings of her. Now on the next Friday
she came home and he fell foul of her; but she brought out to him the
fish alive from the jar and assembled the folk against him and told them
her tale.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Ninety-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the woman brought
out the fish alive from the water-jar and assembled the folk against her
husband, and told them her tale. He also told his; but they credited him
not and said, “It cannot be that the fish should have remained alive all
this while.” So they proved him mad and imprisoned him and mocked at
him, whereupon he shed tears in floods and recited these two couplets:—

 Old hag, of high degree in filthy life, ✿ Whose face her monstrous
    lewdness witnesses.
 When menstruous she bawds; when clean she whores; ✿ And all her time
    bawd or adulteress is.

And a tale is related of the



Footnote 137:

  Moslem women have this advantage over their Western sisterhood: they
  can always leave the house of father or husband and, without asking
  permission, pay a week or ten days’ visit to their friends. But they
  are not expected to meet their lovers.


There was in times of yore and in ages long gone before, a virtuous
woman among the children of Israel, who was pious and devout and used
every day to go out to the place of prayer, first entering a garden,
which adjoined thereto, and there making the minor ablution. Now there
were in this garden two old men, its keepers, and both Shaykhs fell in
love with her and sought her favours; but she refused, whereupon said
they, “Unless thou yield thy body to us, we will bear witness against
thee of fornication.” Quoth she, “Allah will preserve me from your
frowardness!” Then they opened the garden-gate and cried out, and the
folk came to them from all places, saying “What aileth you?” Quoth they,
“We found this damsel in company with a youth who was doing lewdness
with her; but he escaped from our hands.” Now it was the wont of the
people of those days to expose adulterer and adulteress to public
reproach for three days, and after stone them. So they cried her name in
the public streets for three days, whilst the two elders came up to her
daily and, laying their hands on her head, said, “Praised be Allah who
hath sent down on thee His righteous indignation!” Now on the fourth
day, when they bore her away to stone her, they were followed by a lad
named Daniel, who was then only twelve years old, and this was to be the
first of his miracles (upon our Prophet and upon him be blessing and
peace!). And he ceased not following them to the place of execution,
till he came up with them and said to them, “Hasten not to stone her,
till I judge between them.” So they set him a chair and he sat down and
summoned the old men separately. (Now he was the first ever separated
witnesses.) Then said he to the first, “What sawest thou?”[139] So he
repeated to him his story, and Daniel asked, “In what part of the garden
did this befal?” and he answered, “On the eastern side, under a
pear-tree.” Then he called the other old man and asked him the same
question, and he replied, “On the western side of the garden, under an
apple-tree.” Meanwhile the damsel stood by, with her hands and eyes
raised heavenwards, imploring the Lord for deliverance. Then Allah
Almighty sent down His blasting leven-fire upon the elders and consumed
them, and on this wise the Lord made manifest the innocence of the
damsel. Such was the first of the miracles of the Prophet Daniel, on
whom be blessing and peace! And they relate a tale of


Footnote 138:

  The tale of “Susannah and the Elders” in Moslem form. Dániyál is the
  Arab Daniel, supposed to have been buried at Alexandria (Pilgrimage,
  i. 16).

Footnote 139:

  According to Moslem law, laid down by Mohammed on a delicate occasion
  and evidently for a purpose, four credible witnesses are required to
  prove fornication, adultery, sodomy and so forth; and they must swear
  that they actually saw _rem in re_, the “Kohl-needle in the
  Kohl-étui,” as the Arabs have it. This practically prevents conviction
  and the sabre cuts the Gordian knot.


The Commander of the Faithful, Harun al-Rashid, went out one day, with
Abu Ya’Kúb the cup-companion[140] and Ja’afar the Barmecide and Abu
Nowas, into the desert, where they fell in with an old man, propt
against his ass. The Caliph bade Ja’afar learn of him whence he came; so
he asked him, “Whence comest thou?” and he answered, “From
Bassorah.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Ninety-fifth Night,

She said, it hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Ja’afar asked
the man, “Whence comest thou?”; he answered “From Bassorah.” Quoth
Ja’afar, “And whither goest thou?” Quoth the other, “To Baghdad.” Then
Ja’afar enquired “And what wilt thou do there?” and the old man replied,
“I go to seek medicine for my eye.” Said the Caliph, “O Ja’afar, make
thou sport with him,” and answered Ja’afar, “I shall hear what I shall
exceedingly mislike.[141]” But Al-Rashid rejoined, “I charge thee on my
authority, jest with him.” Thereupon Ja’afar said to the Badawi, “If I
prescribe thee a medicine that shall profit thee, what wilt thou give me
in return?” Quoth the other, “Allah Almighty will requite the kindness
with what is better for thee than any requital of mine.” Continued
Ja’afar, “Now lend me an ear and I will give thee a prescription, which
I have given to none but thee.” “What is that?” asked the Badawi; and
Ja’afar answered, “Take three ounces of wind-breaths and the like of
sunbeams and the same of moonshine and as much of lamp-light; mix them
well together and let them lie in the wind three months. Then place them
three months in a mortar without a bottom and pound them to fine powder
and after trituration set them in a cleft platter, and let it stand in
the wind other three months; after which use of this medicine three
drachms every night in thy sleep, and, Inshallah! thou shalt be healed
and whole.” Now when the Badawi heard this, he stretched himself out to
full length on the donkey’s back and let fly a terrible loud fart[142]
and said to Ja’afar, “Take this fart in payment of thy prescription.
When I have followed it, if Allah grant me recovery, I will give thee a
slave-girl, who shall serve thee in thy lifetime a service, wherewith
Allah shall cut short thy term; and when thou diest and the Lord
hurrieth thy soul to hell-fire, she shall blacken thy face with her
skite, of her mourning for thee, and shall keen and beat her face,
saying:—O frosty-beard, what a fool thou wast[143]?” Thereupon Harun
al-Rashid laughed till he fell backward, and ordered the Badawi three
thousand silver pieces. And a tale is told of


Footnote 140:

  Who, in such case, would represent our equerry.

Footnote 141:

  The Badawi not only always tells the truth, a perfect contrast with
  the towns-folk; he is blunt in speech addressing his Sultan “O Sa’id!”
  and he has a hard rough humour which we may fairly describe as “wut.”
  When you “chaff” him look out for falls.

Footnote 142:

  The answer is as old as the hills, _teste_ the tale of what happened
  when Amasis (who on horseback) raised his leg, “broke wind and bade
  the messenger carry it back to Apries.” Herod. ii. 162. But for the
  full significance of the Badawi’s most insulting reply see the Tale of
  Abu Hasan in Night ccccxi.

Footnote 143:

  Arab. “Yá sáki’ al-Dakan” meaning long bearded (foolish) as well as
  frosty bearded.


The Sharif Husayn bin Rayyán relateth that the Caliph Omar bin
Al-Khattáb was sitting one day judging the folk and doing justice
between his subjects, attended by the best and wisest of his
counsellors, when there came up to him a youth comely and cleanly
attired upon whom two very handsome youths had laid hold and were haling
by the collar till they set him in the presence. Whereupon the Commander
of the Faithful, Omar, looked at him and them and bade them loose him;
then, calling him near to himself, asked the twain, “What is your case
with him?” They answered, “O Prince of True Believers, we are two
brothers by one mother and as followers of verity known are we. We had a
father, a very old man of good counsel, honoured by the tribes, sound of
baseness and renowned for goodliness who reared us tenderly in
childhood, and loaded us with favours in manhood;”——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Ninety-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the two youths
said to the Commander of the Faithful, Omar son of Al-Khattab, “Our
father was a man honoured by the tribes, sound of baseness and renowned
for goodliness, who reared us delicately in childhood, and loaded us
with favours in manhood; in fine, a sea of noble and illustrious
qualities, worthy of the poet’s praise:—

 ‘Is Abu’s-Sakr of Shaybán[144]?’ they asked; ✿ Quoth I, “Nay, by my
    life, of him’s Shaybán:
 How many a sire rose high by a noble son, ✿ As Allah’s Prophet glorified

Now he went forth this day to his garden, to refresh himself amongst its
trees and pluck the ripe fruits, when this young man slew him wrongously
and swerved from the road of righteousness; wherefore we demand of thee
the retribution of his crime and call upon thee to pass judgment upon
him, according to the commandment of Allah.” Then Omar cast a terrible
look at the accused youth and said to him, “Verily thou hearest the
complaint these two young men prefer; what hast thou in reply to aver?”
But he was brave of heart and bold of speech, having doffed the robe of
pusillanimity and put off the garb of cowardry; so he smiled and spake
in the most eloquent and elegant words; and, after paying the usual
ceremonial compliment to the Caliph, said, “By Allah, O Commander of the
Faithful, I have indeed given ear to their complaint, and they have told
the truth in that which they tell, so far as they have set out what
befel; and the commandment of Allah is a decreed decree.[146] But I will
forthright state my case between thy hands, and it is for thee to give
commands. Know then, O Prince of the Faithful, that I am a very Arab of
the Arabies,[147] the noblest of those that are beneath the skies. I
grew up in the dwellings of the wold and fell, till evil times my tribe
befel, when I came to the outskirts of this town, with my family and
whatso goods I own: and as I went along one of the paths leading to its
gardens, orchards and garths, with my she-camels highly esteemed and by
me most precious deemed, and midst them a stallion of noble blood and
shape right good, a plenteous getter of brood, by whom the females
abundantly bore and who walked among them as though a kingly crown he
wore, one of the she-camels broke away; and, running to the garden of
these young men’s father, where the trees showed above the wall, put
forth her lips and began to feed as in stall. I ran to her, to drive her
away, when behold, there appeared, at a breach of the wall, an old man
and grey, whose eyes sparkled with angry ray, holding in his right a
stone to throw and swaying to and fro, with a swing like a lion ready
for a spring. He cast the stone at my stallion, and it killed him for it
struck a vital part. When I saw the stallion drop dead beside me, I felt
live coals of anger kindled in my heart; so I took up the very same
stone and throwing it at the old man, it was the cause of his bane and
ban: thus his own wrongful act returned to him anew, and the man was
slain of that wherewith he slew. When the stone struck him, he cried out
with a great cry and shrieked out a terrible shriek, whereupon I
hastened from the spot; but these two young men hurried after me and
laid hands on me and before thee carried me.” Quoth Omar (Almighty Allah
accept of him!), “Thou hast confessed what thou committedest, and of
acquittal there is no possible occasion; for urgent is the law of
retaliation and they cried for mercy but it was not a time to
escape.”[148] The youth answered, “I hear and obey the judgment of the
Imam, and I consent to all required by the law of Al-Islam; but I have a
young brother, whose old father, before his decease, appointed to him
wealth in great store and gold galore, and committed his affair to me
before Allah, saying:—I give this into thy hand for thy brother; keep it
for him with all thy might. So I took the money and buried it; nor doth
any know of it but I. Now, if thou adjudge me to be justiced forthright,
the money will be lost and thou shalt be the cause of its loss;
wherefore the child will sue thee for his due on the day when the
Creator shall judge between His creatures. But, if thou wilt grant me
three days’ delay, I will appoint some guardian to administer the
affairs of the boy and return to answer my debt; and I have one who will
be my surety for the fulfilment of this my promise.” So the Commander of
the Faithful bowed his head awhile, then raised it and looking round
upon those present, said, “Who will stand surety by me for his return to
this place?” And the youth looked at the faces of those who were in
company and pointing to Abu Zarr,[149] in preference to all present,
said, “This man shall answer for me and be my bail.”——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

      Now when it was the Three Hundred and Ninety-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the youth
pointed to Abu Zarr and said, “This man shall answer for me and be my
bail,” Omar (Allah accept of him!) said, “O Abu Zarr, dost thou hear
these words and wilt thou be surety to me for the return of this youth?”
He answered, “Yes, O Commander of the Faithful, I will be surety for him
three days.” So the Caliph accepted his guarantee and let the young man
go. Now when the appointed time passed and the days of grace were nearly
or quite at end yet the youth came not, the Caliph took seat in his
council, with the Companions surrounding him, like the constellations
about the moon, Abu Zarr and the plaintiffs being also present; and the
avengers said, “Where is the defendant, O Abu Zarr, and how shall he
return, having once fled? But we will not stir from our places till thou
bring him to us, that we may take of him our blood-revenge.” Replied Abu
Zarr, “By the truth of the All-Wise King, if the three days of grace
expire and the young man return not, I will fulfil my warranty and
surrender my person to the Imam;” and added Omar (whom Allah accept!),
“By the Lord, if the young man appear not, I will assuredly execute on
Abu Zarr that which is prescribed by the law of Al-Islam!”[150]
Thereupon the eyes of the bystanders ran over with tears; those who
looked on groaned aloud and great was the clamour. Then the chiefs of
the Companions urged the plaintiffs to accept the blood-wit and deserve
the thanks of the folk; but they both refused and would accept nothing
save the talion. However, as the folk were swaying to and fro like waves
and loudly bemoaning Abu Zarr, behold, up came the young Badawi; and,
standing before the Imam, saluted him right courteously (with
sweat-beaded face and shining with the crescent’s grace) and said to
him, “I have given the lad in charge to his mother’s brothers and have
made them acquainted with all that pertaineth to his affairs and let
them into the secret of his monies; after which I braved the heats of
noon and have kept my word as a free-born man.” Thereupon the folk
marvelled, seeing his good faith and loyalty and his offering himself to
death with so stout a heart; and one said to him, “How noble a youth art
thou and how loyal to thy word of honour and thy devoir!” Rejoined he,
“Are ye not convinced that when death presenteth itself, none can escape
from it? And indeed, I have kept my word, that it be not said, Good
faith is gone from among mankind.” Said Abu Zarr, “By Allah, O Commander
of the Faithful, I became warrant for this young man, without knowing to
what tribe he belonged, nor had I seen him before that day; but, when he
turned away from all who were present and singled me out, saying:—This
man shall answer for me and be my bail, I thought it not right to refuse
him, and generosity forbade to disappoint his desire, there being no
harm in compliance therewith, that it be not bruited abroad, Benevolence
is gone from among mankind.” Then said the two young men, “O Commander
of the Faithful, we forgive this youth our father’s blood, seeing that
he hath changed desolation into cheerfulness; that it be not said,
Humanity is gone from among mankind.” So the Caliph rejoiced in the
acquittance of the youth and his truth and good faith; moreover, he
magnified the generosity of Abu Zarr, extolling it over all his
companions, and approved the resolve of the two young men for its
benevolence, giving them praise with thanks and applying to their case
the saying of the poet:—

 Who doth kindness to men shall be paid again; ✿ Ne’er is kindness lost
    betwixt God and men.

Then he offered to pay them, from the Treasury, the blood-wit for their
father; but they refused, saying, “We forgave him only of our desire
unto Allah,[151] the Bountiful, the Exalted; and he who is thus
intentioned followeth not his benefits with reproach or with
mischief.”[152] And amongst the tales they relate is that of


Footnote 144:

  P. N. of the tribe, often mentioned in The Nights.

Footnote 145:

  Adnan, with whom Arab genealogy begins, is generally supposed to be
  the eighth (Al-Tabari says the fortieth) descendant from Ishmael and
  nine generations are placed between him and Fahr (Fihr) Kuraysh. The
  Prophet cut all disputes short by saying, “Beyond Adnan none save
  Allah wotteth and the genealogists lie” (Pilgrimage ii. 344). M. C. de
  Perceval dates Adnan about B.C. 130.

Footnote 146:

  Koran xxxiii., 38.

Footnote 147:

  Arab. “Arab al-Arabá,” as before noticed (vol. i. 12) the pure and
  genuine blood as opposed to the “Musta’aribah,” the “Muta’arribah,”
  the “Mosarabians” and other Araboids; the first springing from Kahtan
  (Yaktan?) and the others from Adnan. And note that “Arabi” = a man of
  pure Arab race, either of the Desert or of the city, while A’arábi
  applies only to the Desert man, the Badawi.

Footnote 148:

  Koran xxxviii. 2, speaking of the Unbelievers (_i.e._ non-Moslems) who
  are full of pride and contention.

Footnote 149:

  One of the Asháb, or Companions of the Apostle, that is them who knew
  him personally (Pilgrimage ii. 80, etc.). The Asháb al-Suffah
  (Companions of the bench or sofa) were certain houseless Believers
  lodged by the Prophet (Pilgrimage ii. 143).

Footnote 150:

  Hence Omar is entitled “Al-Adil” = the Just. Readers will remember
  that by Moslem law and usage murder and homicide are offences to be
  punished by the family, not by society or its delegates. This system
  reappears in civilisation under the denomination of “Lynch Law,” a
  process infinitely distasteful to lawyers (whom it abolishes) and most
  valuable when administered with due discretion.

Footnote 151:

  Lane translates (ii. 592) “from a desire of seeing the face of God;”
  but the general belief of Al-Islam is that the essence of Allah’s
  corporeal form is different from man’s. The orthodox expect to “see
  their Lord on Doom-day as they see the full moon” (a tradition). But
  the Mu’atazilites deny with the existence of matter the corporeity of
  Allah and hold that he will be seen only with the spiritual eyes,
  _i.e._ of reason.

Footnote 152:

  See Gesta Romanorum, Tale cviii., “of Constancy in adhering to
  Promises,” founded on Damon and Pythias or, perhaps, upon the Arabic.


It is told that the Caliph-al-Maamun son of Harun al-Rashid, when he
entered the God-guarded city of Cairo, was minded to pull down the
Pyramids, that he might take what was therein; but, when he went about
to do this, he could not succeed, albeit his best was done. He expended
a mint of money in the attempt,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Ninety-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Al-Maamun
attempting to pull down the Pyramids, expended his mint of money, but
succeeded only in opening up a small tunnel in one of them, wherein it
is said he found treasure to the exact amount of the monies he had spent
in the works, neither more nor less; whereat he marvelled and taking
what he found there, desisted from his determination. Now the Pyramids
are three, and they are one of the Wonders of the World; nor is there on
the face of earth aught like them for height and fashion and
mysteries[154]; for they are built of huge rocks, and the builders
proceeded by piercing one block of stone and setting therein upright
rods of iron[155]; after which they pierced a second block of stone and
lowered it upon the first. Then they poured melted lead upon the clamps
and set the blocks in geometrical order, till the building was complete.
Now the height of each pyramid was an hundred cubits, of the normal
measure of the day, and it had four faces, each three hundred cubits
long from the base and thence battering upwards to a point. The ancients
say that, in the western Pyramid, are thirty chambers of parti-coloured
syenite, full of precious gems and treasures galore and rare images and
utensils and costly weapons which are anointed with egromantic unguents,
so that they may not rust till the day of Resurrection.[156] Therein,
also, are vessels of glass which bend and break not, containing various
kinds of compound drugs and sympathetic waters. In the second Pyramid
are the records of the priests, written on tablets of syenite, to each
priest his tablet, whereon are engraved the wonders of his craft and his
feats; and on the walls are human figures like idols, working with their
hands at all manner of mechanism and seated on stepped thrones.
Moreover, to each Pyramid there is a guardian treasurer who keepeth
watch over it and wardeth it, to all eternity, against the ravages of
time and the shifts of events; and indeed the marvels of these Pyramids
astound all who have sight and insight. Many are the poems that describe
them, thou shalt thereby profit no small matter, and among the rest,
quoth one of them:—

 If Kings would see their high emprize preserved, ✿ ‘Twill be by tongues
    of monuments they laid:
 Seest not the Pyramids? These two endure ✿ Despite what change Time and
    Chance have made.

And quoth another:—

 Look on the Pyramids, and hear the twain ✿ Recount their annals of the
    long-gone Past:
 Could they but speak, high marvels had they told ✿ Of what Time did to
    man from first to last.

And quoth a third:—

 My friend I prithee tell me, ‘neath the sky ✿ Is aught with Egypt’s
    Pyramids can compare?
 Buildings which frighten Time, albe what dwells ✿ On back of earth in
    fear of Time must fare:
 If on their marvels rest my sight no more, ✿ Yet these I ever shall in
    memory bear.

And quoth a fourth:—

 Where is the man who built the Pyramids? ✿ What was his tribe, what day
    and where his tomb?
 The monuments survive the men who built ✿ Awhile, till overthrown by
    touch of Doom.

And men also tell a tale of


Footnote 153:

  Arab. “Al-Ahrám,” a word of unknown provenance. It has been suggested
  that the singular form (Haram), preceded by the Coptic article “Pi” (=
  the) suggested to the Greeks “Pyramis.” But this word is still _sub
  judice_ and every Egyptologist seems to propose his own derivation.
  Brugsch (Egypt i. 72) makes it Greek, the Egyptian being “Abumir,”
  while “pir-am-us” = the edge of the pyramid, the corners running from
  base to apex. The great Egyptologist proves also what the Ancients
  either ignored or forgot to mention, that each pyramid had its own

Footnote 154:

  Arab. “Ahkám,” in this matter supporting the “Pyramidologists.”

Footnote 155:

  All imaginative.

Footnote 156:

  It has always been my opinion founded upon considerations too long to
  detail, that the larger Pyramids contain many unopened chambers. Dr.
  Grant Bey of Cairo proposed boring through the blocks as Artesian
  wells are driven. I cannot divine why Lane (ii. 592) chose to omit
  this tale, which is founded on historic facts and interests us by
  suggesting a comparison between Mediæval Moslem superstitions and
  those of our xixth Century, which to our descendants will appear as
  wild, if not as picturesque, as those of The Nights. The “inspired
  British inch” and the building by Melchisedek (the Shaykh of some
  petty Syrian village) will compare not unaptly with the enchanted
  swords, flexible glass and guardian spirits. But the Pyramidennarren
  is a race which will not speedily die out: it is based on Nature, the
  Pyramids themselves.

                      THE THIEF AND THE MERCHANT.

There was once a thief who repented to Almighty Allah with sincere
penitence; so he opened himself a shop for the sale of stuffs, where he
continued to trade awhile. It so chanced one day that he locked his shop
and went home, and in the night there came to the bazar an artful thief
disguised in the habit of the merchant, and pulling out keys from his
sleeve, said to the watchman of the market, “Light me this wax-candle.”
The watchman took the taper and went to light it,——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Three Hundred and Ninety-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the watchman took
the taper and went to light it, whilst the thief opened the shop and lit
another candle he had by him. When the watchman came back, he found him
seated in the shop, account-books in hand, and reckoning with his
fingers; nor did he cease to do thus till point of day, when he said to
the man, “Fetch me a camel-driver and his camel, to carry some goods for
me.” So the man fetched him a camel, and the thief took four bales[157]
of stuffs and gave them to the cameleer, who loaded them on his beast.
Then he gave the watchman two dirhams and went away after the
camel-driver, leaving the watchman believing him to be the owner of the
shop. Now when the morning dawned and day broke the merchant came and
the watchman began greeting him with blessings, because of the two
dirhams; but the shop-owner wondered at his words as one not knowing
what he meant. When he opened his shop, he saw the droppings of the wax
and the account book lying on the floor, and looking round, found four
bales of stuffs missing. So he asked the watchman what had happened and
he told him what had passed in the night and what had been said to the
cameleer, whereupon the merchant bade him fetch the man and asked him,
“Whither didst thou carry the stuffs this morning?” Answered the driver,
“To such a landing-place, and I stowed them on board such a vessel.”
Said the merchant, “Come with me thither;” so the camel-driver carried
him to the landing-place and said to him, “This be the barque and this
be her owner.” Quoth the merchant to the seaman, “Whither didst thou
carry the merchant and the stuff?” Answered the boat-master, “To such a
place, where he fetched a camel-driver and, setting the bales on the
camel, went his ways I know not whither.” “Fetch me the cameleer who
carried the goods,” said the merchant; so he fetched him and the
merchant said to him, “Whither didst thou carry the bales of stuffs from
the ship?” “To such a Khan,” answered he; and the merchant rejoined,
“Come thither with me and show it me.” So the camel-man went with him to
a place far distant from the shore and showed him the Khan where he had
set down the stuffs, and at the same time the false merchant’s magazine,
which he opened and found therein his four bales bound up as they had
been packed. The thief had laid his cloak over them; so the merchant
took the cloak as well as the bales and delivered them to the
camel-driver, who laid them on his camel; after which he locked the
magazine and went away with the cameleer. On the way, behold, he was
confronted by the thief who followed him, till he had shipped the bales,
when he said to him, “O my brother (Allah have thee in His holy
keeping!), thou hast indeed recovered thy goods and naught of them is
lost; so give me back my cloak.” The merchant laughed and, giving him
back his cloak, let him go unhindered; whereupon both went their ways.
And they tell a tale of


Footnote 157:

  Arab. “Rizm;” hence, through the Italian Risma our ream (= 20 quires
  of paper, etc.), which our dictionaries derive from ἀριθμός (!) See
  “frail” in Night dcccxxxviii.


The Commander of the Faithful, Harun al-Rashid, was exceedingly restless
one night; so he said to his Wazir Ja’afar, “I am sleep-less to-night
and my breast is straitened and I know not what to do.” Now his castrato
Masrúr was standing before him, and he laughed; whereupon the Caliph
said “At whom laughest thou? is it to make mock of me or hath madness
seized thee?” Answered Masrur, “Nay, by Allah, O Commander of the
Faithful,”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

               Now when it was the Four Hundredth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Harun al-Rashid
said to Masrur the Sworder, “Dost thou laugh to make mock of me or hath
madness seized thee?” Answered Masrur, “Nay, by Allah, O Commander of
the Faithful, I swear by thy kinship to the Prince of Apostles, I did it
not of my free will; but I went out yesterday to walk within sight of
the palace and, coming to the bank of the Tigris, saw there the folk
collected; so I stopped and found a man, Ibn al-Káribí hight, who was
making them laugh; but just now I recalled what he said, and laughter
got the better of me; and I crave pardon of thee, O Commander of the
Faithful!” Quoth the Caliph, “Bring him to me forthright;” so Masrur
repaired in all haste to Ibn al-Karibi and said to him, “Answer the
summons of the Commander of the Faithful,” whereto he replied, “I hear
and obey.” “But on condition,” added Masrur, “that, if he give thee
aught, thou shalt have a quarter and the rest shall be mine.” Replied
the droll, “Nay, thou shalt have half and I half.” Rejoined Masrur, “Not
so, I will have three-quarters.” Lastly said Ibn al-Karibi, “Thou shalt
have two-thirds and I the other third;” to which Masrur agreed, after
much higgling and haggling, and they returned to the palace together.
Now when Ibn al-Karibi came into the Caliph’s presence he saluted him as
men greet the Caliphate, and stood before him; whereupon said Al-Rashid
to him, “If thou do not make me laugh, I will give thee three blows with
this bag.” Quoth Ibn al-Karibi in his mind, “And a small matter were
blows with that bag, seeing that beating with whips hurteth me not;” for
he thought the bag was empty. Then he began to deal out his drolleries,
such as would make the dismallest jemmy guffaw, and gave vent to all
manner of buffooneries; but the Caliph laughed not neither smiled,
whereat Ibn al-Karibi marvelled and was chagrined and affrighted. Then
said the Commander of the Faithful, “Now hast thou earned the beating,”
and gave him a blow with the bag, wherein were four pebbles each two
rotols in weight. The blow fell on his neck and he gave a great cry,
then calling to mind his compact with Masrur, said, “Pardon, O Commander
of the Faithful! Hear two words from me.” Quoth the Caliph, “Say on,”
and quoth Ibn al-Karibi, “Masrur made it a condition with me and I a
covenant with him, that whatsoever largesse might come to me of the
bounties of the Commander of the Faithful, one-third thereof should be
mine and the rest his; nor did he agree to leave me so much as
one-third, save after much higgling and haggling. Now thou hast bestowed
on me nothing but beating; I have had my share and here standeth he,
ready to receive his portion; so pay him the two other blows.” Now when
the Caliph heard this, he laughed till he fell on his back; then calling
Masrur, he gave him a blow, whereat he cried out and said, “O Commander
of the Faithful, the one-third sufficeth me: give him the
two-thirds.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Four Hundred and First Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Masrur cried out,
“O Commander of the Faithful! the one-third sufficeth me; give him the
two-thirds.” So the Caliph laughed at them and ordered them a thousand
dinars each, and they went away, rejoicing at the largesse. And of the
tales they tell is one of

                          THE DEVOTEE PRINCE.

The Commander of the Faithful, Harun al-Rashid, had a son who, from the
time he attained the age of sixteen, renounced the world and walked in
the way[158] of ascetics and devotees. He was wont to go out to the
grave-yards and say, “Ye once ruled the world, but that saved you not
from death, and now are ye come to your sepulchres! Would Heaven I knew
what ye said and what is said to you!”[159] And he wept as one weepeth
who is troubled with fear and apprehension, and repeated the words of
the poet:—

 Affright me funerals at every time; ✿ And wailing women grieve me to the

Now it chanced one day, as he sat among the tombs, according to his
custom, his father passed by in all his state, surrounded by his Wazirs
and Lords of the realm and the Officers of his household, who seeing the
Caliph’s son with a gown of woollen stuff on his body and a twist of
wool on his head by way of turband, said to one another, “Verily this
youth dishonoureth the Commander of the Faithful among Kings: but, if he
reproved him, he would leave his present way of life.” The Caliph heard
these words; so quoth he to his son, “O my dear child, of a truth thou
disgracest me by thy present way of life.” The young man looked at him
and made no reply: then he beckoned to a bird perched on the battlements
of the palace, and said to it, “O thou bird, I conjure thee by Him who
created thee, alight upon my hand.” Whereupon straightway it swooped
down and perched on his finger. Then quoth he, “Return to thy place;”
and it did so. Presently he said, “Alight on the hand of the Commander
of the Faithful;” but it refused there to perch, and he cried to his
father, “It is thou that disgracest me amongst the Holy[160] Ones, by
the love of the world; and now I am resolved to part from thee, never to
return to thee, save in the world to come.” Then he went down to
Bassorah, where he took to working with those which wrought in
clay,[161] receiving, as his day’s hire, but a dirham and a dánik;[162]
and with the danik he fed himself and gave alms of the dirham. (Quoth
Abú Amir of Bassorah) There fell down a wall in my house: so I went
forth to the station of the artisans to find a man who should repair it
for me, and my eyes fell on a handsome youth of a radiant countenance.
So I saluted him and asked him, “O my friend, dost thou seek work?”
“Yes,” answered he; and I said, “Come with me and build a wall.” He
replied, “On certain conditions I will make with thee.” Quoth I “What
are they, O my friend?”; and quoth he, “My wage must be a dirham and a
danik, and again when the Mu’ezzin calleth to prayer, thou shalt let me
go pray with the congregation.” “It is well,” answered I and carried him
to my place, where he fell to work, such work as I never saw the like
of. Presently, I named to him the morning-meal; but he said, “No;” and I
knew that he was fasting.[163] When he heard the call to prayer, he said
to me, “Thou knowest the condition?” “Yes,” answered I. So he loosed his
girdle and, applying himself to the lesser ablution, made it after a
fashion than which I never saw a fairer;[164] then he went to the mosque
and prayed with the congregation and returned to his work. He did the
same upon the call to mid-afternoon prayer, and when I saw him fall to
work again thereafterward, I said to him, “O my friend, verily the hours
of labour are over; a workman’s day is but till the time of
afternoon-prayer.” But he replied, “Praise to the Lord, my service is
till the night.” And he ceased not to work till nightfall, when I gave
him two dirhams; whereupon he asked “What is this!”; and I answered, “By
Allah, this is but part of thy wage, because of thy diligence in my
service.” But he threw them back to me saying, “I will have no more than
was agreed upon between us twain.” I urged him to take them, but could
not prevail upon him; so I gave him the dirham and the danik, and he
went away. And when morning dawned, I went to the station but found him
not; so I enquired for him and was told, “He cometh thither only on
Sabbaths.” Accordingly, when Saturday came, I betook me to the market
and finding him there, said to him, “Bismillah, do me the favour to come
and work for me.” Said he, “Upon the conditions thou wottest;” and I
answered “Yes!” Then carrying him to my house I stood to watch him where
he could not see me; and he took a handful of puddled clay and laid it
on the wall, when, behold, the stones ranged themselves one upon other;
and I said, “On this wise are Allah’s holy ones.” He worked out his day
and did even more than before; and when it was night, I gave him his
hire, and he took it and walked away. Now when the third Saturday came
round, I went to the place of standing, but found him not; so I asked
after him and they told me, “He is sick and lying in the shanty of such
a woman.” Now this was an old wife, renowned for piety, who had a hovel
of reeds in the burial-ground. So I fared thither and found him
stretched on the floor which was bare, with a brick for a pillow and his
face beaming like the new moon with light. I saluted him and he returned
my salam; and I sat down at his head weeping over his fair young years
and absence from home and submission to the will of his Lord. Then said
I to him, “Hast thou any need?” “Yes,” answered he; and I said, “What is
it?” He replied, “Come hither to-morrow in the forenoon and thou wilt
find me dead. Wash me and dig my grave and tell none thereof: but shroud
me in this my gown, after thou hast unsewn it and taken out what thou
shalt find in the bosom-pocket, which keep with thee. Then, when thou
hast prayed over me and laid me in the dust, go to Baghdad and watch for
the Caliph Harun al-Rashid, till he come forth, when do thou give him
what thou shalt find in the breast of my gown and bear him my
salutation.” Then he ejaculated the profession of the Faith and
glorified his God in the most eloquent of words reciting these

 Carry the trust of him whom death awaits ✿ To Al-Rashid, and God reward
    thy care!
 And say, “An exile who desired thy sight ✿ Long loving, from afar sends
    greeting fair.
 Nor hate nor irk (No!) him from thee withdrew, ✿ Kissing thy right to
    Heaven brought him near.[165]
 But what estranged his soul, O sire, from thee ✿ Is that thy worldly
    joys it would not share!”

Then he betook himself to prayer, asking pardon of Allah——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Four Hundred and Second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the youth then
betook himself to asking pardon of Allah and to invoking prayer and
praise upon the Apostle and the Lord of the Just and repeating verses of
the Koran; after which he recited these couplets:—

 O sire, be not deceived by worldly joys; ✿ For life must pass, and joy
    must learn to mourn;
 When thou art told of folk in evil plight, ✿ Think thou must answer for
    all hearts forlorn;
 And when thou bear thy dead toward the tombs, ✿ Know thou wilt likewise
    on that way be borne.

(Continued Abu Amir the Basri) Now when the youth had ended his charge
and his verses I left him and went home. On the morrow, I returned, at
the appointed hour, and found him indeed dead, the mercy of Allah be
upon him! So I washed him and, unsewing his gown, found in the bosom a
ruby worth thousands of gold pieces and said to myself, “By Allah, this
youth was indeed weaned from worldly things!” After I had buried him, I
made my way to Baghdad and, going to the Caliph’s palace, waited till he
came forth, when I addressed him in one of the streets and gave him the
ruby, which when he saw, he knew and fell down in a fainting-fit. His
attendants laid hands on me, but he revived and said to them, “Release
him and bring him courteously to the palace.” They did his bidding, and
when he returned, he sent for me and carrying me into his chamber said
to me, “How doth the owner of this ruby?” Quoth I, “Verily he is dead;”
and told him what had passed; whereupon he fell a-weeping and said, “The
son hath gained; but the sire hath lost.” Then he called out, saying,
“Ho, such an one!”; and behold, there came out to him a lady who, when
she saw me, would have withdrawn; but he cried to her, “Come; and mind
him not.” So she entered and saluted, and he threw her the ruby, which
when she saw and she knew, she shrieked a great shriek and fell down in
a swoon. As soon as she came to herself, she said, “O Commander of the
Faithful, what hath Allah done with my son?”; and he said to me, “Do
thou tell her his case;” (as he could not speak for weeping).
Accordingly, I repeated the story to her, and she began to shed tears
and say in a faint and failing voice, “How I have longed for thy sight,
O solace of mine eyes![166] Would I might have given thee to drink, when
thou hadst none to slake thy thirst! Would I might have cheered thee,
whenas thou foundest never a cheerer!” And she poured forth tears and
recited these couplets:—

 I weep for one whose lot a lonely death befel; ✿ Without a friend to
    whom he might complain and moan:
 And after glory and glad union with his friends, ✿ He woke to
    desolation, friendless, lorn and lone:
 What Fortune hides a while she soon to men shall show; ✿ Death never
    spared a man; no, not a single one:
 O absent one, my Lord decreed thee strangerhood, ✿ Far from thy nearest
    friends and to long exile gone:
 Though Death forbid my hope of meeting here again, ✿ On Doom-day’s
    morrow we shall meet again, my son![167]

Quoth I, “O Commander of the Faithful, was he indeed thy son?” Quoth he,
“Yes, and indeed, before I succeeded to this office, he was wont to
visit the learned and company with the devout; but, when I became
Caliph, he grew estranged from me and withdrew himself apart.[168] Then
said I to his mother, Verily this thy son hath cut the world and devoted
his life to Almighty Allah, and it may be that hard times shall befal
him and he be smitten with trial of evil chance; wherefore do thou give
him this ruby, which he may find useful in hour of need. So she gave it
him, conjuring him to take it, and he obeyed her bidding. Then he left
to us the things of our world and removed himself from us; nor did he
cease to be absent from us, till he went to the presence of Allah (to
whom be Honour and Glory!), pious and pure.” Then said he, “Come, show
me his grave.” So, I travelled with him to Bassorah and showed him his
son’s grave; and when he saw it, he wept and lamented, till he fell down
in a swoon; after which he recovered and asked pardon of the Lord,
saying, “We are Allah’s and unto Him we are returning!”; and invoked
blessings on the dead. Then he asked me to become his companion, but I
said to him, “O Commander of the Faithful, verily, in thy son’s case is
for me the most momentous of admonitions!” And I recited these

 ‘Tis I am the stranger, visited by none; ✿ I am the stranger though in
    town my own:
 ‘Tis I am the stranger! lacking kith and son, ✿ And friend to whom I
    mote for aidance run.
 I house in mosques which are my only home; ✿ My heart there wones and
    shall for ever wone:
 Then laud ye Allah, Lord of Worlds, as long ✿ As soul and body dwell in

And a famous tale is told of


Footnote 158:

  Arab. “Taríkah” = the path trodden by ascetics and mystics in order to
  attain true knowledge (Ma’rifat in Pers. Dánish). These are extensive
  subjects: for the present I must refer readers to the Dabistan, iii.
  35 and iii. 29, 36–7.

Footnote 159:

  Alluding to the Fishár or “Squeeze of the tomb.” This is the Jewish
  Hibbut hak-keber which all must endure, save those who lived in the
  Holy Land or died on the Sabbath-eve (Friday night). Then comes the
  questioning by the Angels Munkar and Nakir (vulgarly called Nákir and
  Nakír) for which see Lane (M. E. chapt. xviii.). In Egypt a “Mulakkin”
  (intelligencer) is hired to prompt and instruct the dead. Moslems are
  beginning to question these facts of their faith: a Persian
  acquaintance of mine filled his dead father’s mouth with flour and
  finding it _in loco_ on opening the grave, publicly derided the
  belief. But the Mullahs had him on the hip, after the fashion of
  reverends, declaring that the answers were made through the whole
  body, not only by the mouth. At last the Voltairean had to quit

Footnote 160:

  Arab. “Walí” = a saint, Santon (Ital. form) also a slave. See in
  Richardson (Dissert. iii.), an illustration of the difference between
  Wali and Wáli as exemplified by the Caliph al-Kádir and Mahmúd of

Footnote 161:

  Arab. “Tín” = the tenacious clay puddled with chaff which serves as
  mortar for walls built of Adobe or sundried brick. I made a mistake in
  my Pilgrimage (i. 10) translating Ras al-Tín the old Pharos of
  Alexandria, by “Headland of Figs.” It is Headland of Clay, so called
  from the argile there found and which supported an old pottery.

Footnote 162:

  The danik (Pers. Dang) is the sixth of a dirham. Mr. S. L. Poole (The
  Acad. April 26, ‘79) prefers his uncle’s translation “a sixth” (what
  of?) to Mr. Payne’s “farthing.” The latter at any rate is

Footnote 163:

  The devotee was “Sáim al-dahr” _i.e._ he never ate nor drank from
  daylight to dark throughout the year.

Footnote 164:

  The ablution of a common man differs from that of an educated Moslem
  as much as the eating of a clown and a gentleman. Moreover there are
  important technical differences between the Wuzu of the Sunni and the

Footnote 165:

  _i.e._ by honouring his father.

Footnote 166:

  This young saint was as selfish and unnatural a sinner as Saint
  Alexius of the Gesta Romanorum (Tale xv.), to whom my friend, the late
  Thomas Wright, administered just and due punishment.

Footnote 167:

  The verses are affecting enough, though by no means high poetry.

Footnote 168:

  The good young man cut his father for two reasons: secular power (an
  abomination to good Moslems) and defective title to the Caliphate. The
  latter is a trouble to Turkey in the present day and with time will
  prove worse.


(Quoth one of the learned) I passed once by a school, wherein a
schoolmaster was teaching children; so I entered, finding him a
good-looking man and a well-dressed; when he rose to me and made me sit
with him. Then I examined him in the Koran and in syntax and prosody and
lexicography; and behold, he was perfect in all required of him, so I
said to him, “Allah strengthen thy purpose! Thou art indeed versed in
all that is requisite.” Thereafter I frequented him a while, discovering
daily some new excellence in him, and quoth I to myself, “This is indeed
a wonder in any dominie; for the wise are agreed upon a lack of wit in
children’s teachers.” Then I separated myself from him and sought him
and visited him only every few days, till coming to see him one day as
of wont, I found the school shut and made enquiry of his neighbours, who
replied, “Some one is dead in his house.” So I said in my mind, “It
behoveth me to pay him a visit of condolence,” and going to his house,
knocked at the door, when a slave-girl came out to me and asked, “What
dost thou want?” and I answered, “I want thy master.” She replied, “He
is sitting alone, mourning;” and I rejoined, “Tell him that his friend
so and so seeketh to console him.” She went in and told him; and he
said, “Admit him.” So she brought me in to him, and I found him seated
alone and his head bound with mourning fillets. So I said to him, “Allah
requite thee amply! this is a path all must perforce tread, and it
behoveth thee to take patience;” adding, “But who is dead unto thee?” He
answered, “One who was dearest of the folk to me and best beloved.”
“Perhaps thy father?” “No!” “Thy brother?” “No!” “One of thy kindred?”
“No!” Then asked I, “What relation was the dead to thee?”; and he
answered, “My lover.” Quoth I to myself “This is the first proof to
swear by of his lack of wit.” So I said to him, “Assuredly there be
others than she and fairer;” and he made answer, “I never saw her, that
I might judge whether or no there be others fairer than she.” Quoth I to
myself, “This is another proof positive.” Then I said to him, “And how
couldst thou fall in love with one thou hast never seen?” He replied
“Know that I was sitting one day at the window, when lo! there passed by
a man, singing the following distich:—

 Umm Amr’,[169] thy boons Allah repay! ✿ Give back my heart be’t where it

And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

           Now when it was the Four Hundred and Third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the schoolmaster
continued, “When I heard the man humming these words as he passed along
the street, I said to myself:—Except this Umm Amru were without equal in
the world, the poets had not celebrated her in ode and canzon. So I fell
in love with her; but, two days after, the same man passed, singing the
following couplet:—

 Ass and Umm Amr’ went their way; ✿ Nor she, nor ass returned for aye.

Thereupon I knew that she was dead and mourned for her. This was three
days ago, and I have been mourning ever since.” So I left him and fared
forth, having assured myself of the weakness of the gerund-grinder’s
wit. And they tell another and a similar tale of


Footnote 169:

  Umm Amrí (written Amrú and pronounced Amr’) a matronymic, “mother of
  Amru.” This story and its terminal verse is a regular Joe Miller.

                       THE FOOLISH DOMINIE.[170]

Once upon a time, a schoolmaster was visited by a man of letters who
entered a school and, sitting down by the host’s side, entered into
discourse with him and found him an accomplished theologian, poet,
grammarian, philologist and poet; intelligent, well bred and pleasant
spoken; whereat he wondered, saying in himself, “It cannot be that a man
who teacheth children in a school, should have a perfect wit.” Now when
he was about to go away, the pedant said to him, “Thou art my guest
to-night;” and he consented to receive hospitality and accompanied him
to his house, where he made much of him and set food before him. They
ate and drank and sat talking, till a third part of the night was past
when the host spread his guest a bed and went up to his Harim. The
stranger lay down and addressed himself to sleep, when, behold, there
arose a great clamour in the women’s rooms. He asked what was the matter
and they said, “A terrible thing hath befallen the Shaykh and he is at
the last gasp.” Said he, “Take me up to him”; so they took him up to the
pedagogue whom he found lying insensible, with his blood streaming down.
He sprinkled water on his face and when he revived, he asked him “What
hath betided thee? When thou leftest me, thou wast in all good cheer and
whole of body;” and he answered, “O my brother, after I left thee, I sat
meditating on the creative works of Almighty Allah, and said to
myself:—In every thing the Lord hath created for man, there is an use;
for He (to Whom be glory!) made the hands to seize, the feet to walk,
the eyes to see, the ears to hear and the penis to increase and
multiply; and so on with all the members of the body, except these two
ballocks; there is no use in them. So I took a razor I had by me and cut
them off; and there befel me what thou seest.” So the guest left him and
went away, saying, “He was in the right who said:—Verily no schoolmaster
who teacheth children can have a perfect wit, though he know all the
sciences.” And they tell a pleasant tale of the


Footnote 170:

  Abuse and derision of schoolmaster are staple subjects in the East as
  in the West, (Quem Dii oderunt pædagogum fecerunt). Anglo-Indians will

             Miyán-ji ti-ti!
             Bachche-kí gánd men anguli kí thi!
             (Schoolmaster hum!
             Who fumbled and fingered the little boy’s bum?)


There was once, among the menials[171] of a certain mosque, a man who
knew not how to write or even to read and who gained his bread by
gulling folk. One day, it occurred to him to open a school and teach
children; so he got together writing-tablets and written papers and hung
them up in a high place. Then he greatened his turband[172] and sat down
at the door of the school; and when the people, who passed by, saw his
huge head-gear and tablets and scrolls, they thought he must be a very
learned pedagogue; so they brought him their children; and he would say
to this, “Write,” and to that “Read”; and thus the little ones taught
one another. Now one day, as he sat as of wont, at the door of the
school, behold, up came a woman letter in hand, and he said in his mind,
“This woman doubtless seeketh me, that I may read her the missive she
hath in her hand: how shall I do with her, seeing I cannot read
writing?” And he would fain have gone down and fled from her; but,
before he could do this, she overtook him and said to him, “Whither
away?” Quoth he, “I purpose to pray the noon-prayer and return.” Quoth
she, “Noon is yet distant, so read me this letter.” He took the letter
and turning it upside down, fell to looking at it, now shaking his head
till his turband quivered, then dancing his eyebrows and anon showing
anger and concern. Now the letter came from the woman’s husband, who was
absent; and when she saw the dominie do on this wise, she said to
herself, “Doubtless my husband is dead, and this learned doctor of law
and religion is ashamed to tell me so.” So she said to him, “O my lord,
if he be dead, tell me;” but he shook his head and held his peace. Then
said she, “Shall I rend my raiment?” “Rend!” replied he. “Shall I beat
my face?” asked she; and he answered, “Beat!” So she took the letter
from his hand and returning home fell a-weeping, she and her children.
Presently, one of her neighbours heard her sobbing and asking what ailed
her, was answered, “Of a truth she hath gotten a letter, telling her
that her husband is dead.” Quoth the man, “This is a falsehood; for I
had a letter from him but yesterday, advising me that he is whole and in
good health and will be with her after ten days.” So he rose forthright
and going in to her, said, “Where is the letter which came to thee?” She
brought it to him, and he took it and read it; and lo! it ran as
follows, “After the usual salutations, I am well and in good health and
whole and will be with you all after ten days. Meanwhile, I send you a
quilt and an extinguisher.”[173] So she took the letter and, returning
with it to the schoolmaster, said to him, “What induced thee to deal
thus with me?” And she repeated to him what her neighbour had told her
of her husband’s well-being and of his having sent her a quilt and an
extinguisher. Answered he, “Thou art in the right, O good woman; for I
was, at the time”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the pedagogue
replied, “Verily I was at that time fashed and absent-minded and, seeing
the extinguisher wrapped up in the quilt, I thought that he was dead and
they had shrouded him.” The woman, not smoking the cheat, said, “Thou
art excused,” and taking the letter, went her ways.[174] And they relate
a story of


Footnote 171:

  Arab. “Mujawirin” = the lower servants, sweepers etc. See Pilgrimage
  ii. 161 where it is also applied to certain “settlers” at Al-Medinah.
  Burckhardt (No. 480) notices another meaning “foreigners who attend
  mosque-lectures” and quotes the saying, “A. pilgrimaged:” quoth B.
  “yes! and for his villainies resideth (Mujáwir) at Meccah.”

Footnote 172:

  The custom (growing obsolete in Egypt) is preserved in Afghanistan
  where the learned wear turbans equal to the canoe-hats of the Spanish

Footnote 173:

  Arab. “Makmarah,” a metal cover for the usual brasier or pan of
  charcoal which acts fire-place. Lane (ii. 600) does not translate the
  word and seems to think it means a belt or girdle, thus blunting the
  point of the dominie’s excuse.

Footnote 174:

  This story, a very old Joe Miller, was told to Lane as something new
  and he introduced it into his Modern Egyptians, end of chapt. ii.

                    THE KING AND THE VIRTUOUS WIFE.

A certain King once went forth in disguise, to look into the affairs of
his lieges. Presently, he came to a great village which he entered
unattended and being athirst, stopped at the door of a house and asked
for water. There came out to him a fair woman with a gugglet, which she
gave him, and he drank. When he looked at her, he was ravished with her
and besought her favours. Now she knew him; so she led him into the
house and, making him sit down, brought out a book and said to him,
“Look therein whilst I order my affair and return to thee.” So he looked
into the book, and behold, it treated of the Divine prohibition against
advoutry and of the punishments which Allah hath prepared for those who
commit adulterous sin. When he read this, his flesh quaked and his hair
bristled and he repented to Almighty Allah: then he called the woman
and, giving her the book, went away. Now her husband was absent and when
he returned, she told him what had passed, whereat he was confounded and
said in himself, “I fear lest the King’s desire have fallen upon her.”
And he dared not have to do with her and know her carnally after this.
When some time had past, the wife told her kinsfolk of her husband’s
conduct, and they complained of him to the King, saying, “Allah advance
the King! This man hired of us a piece of land for tillage, and tilled
it awhile; then left it fallow and neither tilled it nor forsook it,
that we might let it to one who would till it. Indeed, harm is come to
the field, and we fear its corruption, for such land as that, if it be
not sown, spoileth.” Quoth the King to the man, “What hindereth thee
from sowing thy land?” Answered he, “Allah advance the King! It reached
me that the lion entered the field, wherefor I stood in awe of him and
dared not draw near it, since knowing that I cannot cope with the lion,
I stand in fear of him.” The King understood the parable and rejoined,
saying, “O man, the lion trod and trampled not thy land, and it is good
for seed; so do thou till it and Allah prosper thee in it, for the lion
hath done it no hurt.” Then he bade give the man and his wife a handsome
present and sent them away.[175] And amongst the stories is that of


Footnote 175:

  This tale is a mere abbreviation of “The King and his Wazir’s wife,”
  in the Book of Sindibad or the Malice of Women, Night dcxxviii., which
  see for annotations.


There was once a man of the people of West Africa who had journeyed far
and wide and traversed many a desert and a tide. He was once cast upon
an island, where he abode a long while and, returning thence to his
native country, brought with him the quill of a wing-feather of a young
Rukh, whilst yet in egg and unhatched; and this quill was big enough to
hold a goat-skin’s of water, for it is said that the length of the
Rukh-chick’s wing, when he cometh forth of the egg, is a thousand
fathoms. The folk marvelled at this quill, when they saw it, and the man
who was called Abd al-Rahman the Moor (and he was known, to boot, as the
Chinaman, for his long sojourn in Cathay), related to them the following
adventure, one of many of his traveller’s tales of marvel. He was on a
voyage in the China seas,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Abd al-Rahman, the
Moorman, the Chinaman, was wont to tell wondrous tales amongst which was
the following. He was on a voyage in the China seas with a company of
merchants, when they sighted an island from afar; so they steered for it
and, making fast thereto, saw that it was large and spacious. The ship’s
crew went ashore to get wood and water, taking with them hatchets and
ropes and waterskins (the travellers accompanying them), and presently
espied a great dome, white and gleaming, an hundred cubits long. So they
made towards it and drawing near, found that it was an egg of the Rukh
and fell on it with axes and stones and sticks till they uncovered the
young bird and found the chick as it were a firm-set hill. So they
plucked out one of the wing-feathers, but could not do so, save by
helping one another, for all the quills were not full grown; after which
they took what they could carry of the young bird’s flesh and cutting
the quill away from the vane, returned to the ship. Then they set sail
and putting out to sea, voyaged with a fair wind all that night, till
the sun rose; and while everything went well, they saw the Rukh come
flying after them, as he were a vast cloud, with a rock in his talons,
like a great heap bigger than the ship. As soon as he poised himself in
air over the vessel, he let fall the rock upon it; but the craft, having
great way on her, outwent the rock, which fell into the sea with a loud
crash and a horrible. So Allah decreed their deliverance and saved them
from doom; and they cooked the young bird’s flesh and ate it. Now there
were amongst them old white-bearded men; and when they awoke on the
morrow, they found that their beards had turned black, nor did any who
had eaten of the young Rukh grow gray ever after. Some said the cause of
the return of youth to them and the ceasing of hoariness from them was
that they had heated the pot with arrow-wood, whilst others would have
it that it came of eating the Rukh-chick’s flesh; and this is indeed a
wonder of wonders.[177] And a story is related of


Footnote 176:

  The older “Roc” which may be written “Rukh” or “Rukhkh.” Colonel Yule,
  the learned translator of Marco Polo, has shown that “Roc’s” feathers
  were not uncommon curiosities in mediæval ages; and holds that they
  were mostly fronds of the palm Raphia vinifera, which has the largest
  leaf in the vegetable kingdom and which the Moslems of Zanzibar call
  “Satan’s date-tree.” I need hardly quote “Frate Cipolla and the Angel
  Gabriel’s Feather.” (Decameron vi. 10.)

Footnote 177:

  The tale is told in a bald, disjointed style and will be repeated in
  Sindbad the Seaman; where I shall again notice the “Roc.” See Night
  dxxxvii., etc.


Al-Nu’uman bin al-Munzir, King of the Arabs of Irak, had a daughter
named Hind, who went out one Pasch, which is a feast day of the
Nazarenes, to the White Church, to take the sacrament; she was eleven
years old and was the loveliest woman of her age and time; and it so
chanced that on the same day came to Hírah[178] a young man called ‘Adí
bin Zayd[179] with presents from the Chosroë to Al-Nu’uman, and he also
went to the White Church, to communicate. He was tall of stature and
fair of favour, with handsome eyes and smooth cheeks, and had with him a
company of his people. Now there was with Hind bint al-Nu’uman a
slave-girl named Máriyah, who was enamoured of Adi, but had not been
able to foregather with him. So, when she saw him in the church, she
said to Hind, “Look at yonder youth. By Allah, he is handsomer than all
thou seest!” Hind asked, “And who is he?” and Mariyah answered, “Adi bin
Zayd.” Quoth Al-Nu’uman’s daughter, “I fear lest he know me, if I draw
nearer to look on him.” Quoth Mariyah, “How should he know thee when he
hath never seen thee?” So she drew near him and found him jesting with
the youths his companions; and indeed he surpassed them all, not only in
his personal charms but in the excellence of his speech, the eloquence
of his tongue and the richness of his raiment. When the Princess saw
him, she was ravished with him, her reason was confounded and her colour
changed; and Mariyah, seeing her inclination to him, said to her, “Speak
to him.” So she spoke to him and went away. Now when he looked upon her
and heard her speech, he was captivated by her and his wit was dazed;
his heart fluttered, and his colour changed, so that his companions
suspected him, and he whispered one of them to follow her and find out
who she was. The young man went after her and returning informed him
that she was Princess Hind, daughter of Al-Nu’uman. So Adi left the
church, knowing not whither he went, for excess of love, and reciting
these two couplets:—

 O friends of me, one favour more I pray: ✿ Unto the convents[180] find
    once more your way:
 Turn me that so I face the land of Hind; ✿ Then go, and fairest
    greetings for me say.

Then he went to his lodging and lay that night, restless and without
appetite for the food of sleep.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Adi ended his
verses he went to his lodging and lay that night restless and without
appetite for the food of sleep. Now on the morrow Mariyah accosted him
and he received her kindly, though before he would not incline to her,
and said to her, “What is thy will?” Quoth she, “I have a want of thee;”
and quoth he, “Name it, for by Allah, thou shalt not ask me aught, but I
will give it thee!” So she told him that she loved him, and her want of
him was that he would grant her a lover’s privacy; and he agreed to do
her will, on condition that she would serve him with Hind and devise
some device to bring them together. Then he took her into a vintner’s
tavern in one of the by-streets of Hirah, and lay with her; after which
she returned to Hind and asked her, “Dost thou not long to see Adi?” She
answered, “How can this be? indeed my longing for him makes me restless,
and no repose is left me since yesterday.” Quoth Mariyah, “I will
appoint him to be in such a place, where thou canst look on him from the
palace.” Quoth Hind, “Do what thou wilt,” and agreed with her upon the
place. So Adi came, and the Princess looked out upon him; and, when she
saw him, she was like to topple down from the palace-top and said, “O
Mariyah, except thou bring him in to me this night, I shall die.” So
saying, she fell to the ground in a fainting-fit, and her serving-women
lifted her up and bore her into the palace; whilst Mariyah hastened to
Al-Nu’uman and discovered the whole matter to him with perfect truth,
telling him that indeed she was mad for the love of Adi; and except he
marry her to him, she must be put to shame and die of love for him,
which would disgrace her father among the Arabs, adding at the end,
“There is no cure for this but wedlock.” The King bowed his head awhile
in thought and exclaimed again and again, “Verily, we are Allah’s and
unto Him we are returning!” Then said he, “Woe to thee! How shall the
marriage be brought about, seeing I mislike to open the matter?” And she
said, “He is yet more ardently in love and yet more desireful of her
than she is of him; and I will so order the affair that he shall be
unaware of his case being known to thee; but do not betray thyself, O
King.” Then she went to Adi and, after acquainting him with everything
said, “Make a feast and bid the King thereto; and, when the wine hath
gotten the better of him, ask of him his daughter, for he will not
refuse thee.” Quoth Adi, “I fear lest this enrage him against me and be
the cause of enmity between us.” But quoth she, “I came not to thee,
till I had settled the whole affair with him.” Then she returned to
Al-Nu’uman and said to him, “Seek of Adi that he entertain thee in his
house.” Replied the King, “There is no harm in that;” and after three
days, besought Adi to give him and his lords the morning-meal in his
house. He consented and the King went to him; and when the wine had
taken effect on Al-Nu’uman, Adi rose and sought of him his daughter in
wedlock. He consented and married them and brought her to him after
three days; and they abode at Al-Nu’uman’s court, in all solace of life
and its delight——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

          Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Adi abode with
Hind bint Al-Nu’uman bin Munzir three years in all solace of life and
its delight, after which time the King was wroth with Adi and slew him.
Hind mourned for him with grievous mourning and built her an hermitage
outside the city, whither she retired and became a religious, weeping
and bewailing her husband till she died. And her hermitage is seen to
this day in the suburbs of Hirah. They also tell a tale of


Footnote 178:

  Hírah in Mesopotamia was a Christian city and principality subject to
  the Persian monarchs; and a rival to the Roman kingdom of Ghassán. It
  has a long history, for which see D’Herbelot.

Footnote 179:

  A pre-Islamite poet.

Footnote 180:

  Arab. “Biká’a,” alluding to the pilgrimages made to monasteries and
  here equivalent to, “Address ye to the road,” etc.


(Quoth Di’ibil al-Khuzá’i[181]), I was sitting one day at the gate of
Al-Karkh,[182] when a damsel came past, never saw I a fairer faced or
better formed than she, walking with a voluptuous swaying gait and
ravishing all beholders with her lithe and undulating pace. Now as my
eyes fell on her, I was captivated by her and my vitals trembled and
meseemed my heart flew forth of my breast; so I stood before her and I
accosted her with this verse:—

 The tears of these eyes find easy release; ✿ But sleep flies these
    eyelids without surcease.

Whereon she turned her face and looking at me, straightway made answer
with this distich:—

 A trifle this an his eyes be sore, ✿ When her eyes say “yes” to his

I was astounded at the readiness of her reply and the fluency of her
speech and rejoined with this verse:—

 Say, doth heart of my fair incline to him ✿ Whose tears like a swelling
    stream increase?

And she answered me without hesitation, thus:—

 If thou crave our love, know that love’s a loan; ✿ And a debt to be paid
    by us twain a-piece.

Never entered my ears aught sweeter than her speech nor ever saw I
brighter than her face: so I changed rhyme and rhythm to try her, in my
wonder at her words, and repeated this couplet:—

 Will Fate with joy of union ever bless our sight, ✿ And one desireful
    one with other one unite.

She smiled at this (never saw I fairer than her mouth nor sweeter than
her lips), and answered me, without stay or delay, in the following

 Pray, tell me what hath Fate to do betwixt us twain? ✿ Thou’rt Fate: so
    bless our eyne with union and delight.

At this, I sprang up and fell to kissing her hands and cried, “I had not
thought that Fortune would vouchsafe me such occasion. Do thou follow
me, not of bidding or against thy will, but of the grace of thee and thy
favour to me.” Then I went on and she after me. Now at that time I had
no lodging I deemed fit for the like of her; but Muslim bin
al-Walíd[183] was my fast friend, and he had a handsome house. So I made
for his abode and knocked at the door, whereupon he came out, and I
saluted him, saying, “‘Tis for time like this that friends are treasured
up”; and he replied, “With love and gladness! Come in you twain.” So we
entered but found money scarce with him: however, he gave me a kerchief,
saying, “Carry it to the bazar and sell it and buy food and what else
thou needest.” I took the handkerchief, and hastening to the market,
sold it and bought what we required of victuals and other matters; but
when I returned, I found that Muslim had retired with her to an
underground chamber.[184] When he heard my step he hurried out and said
to me, “Allah requite thee the kindness thou hast done me, O Abu Ali and
reward thee in time to come and reckon it of thy good deeds on the Day
of Doom!” So saying, he took from me the food and wine and shut the door
in my face. His words enraged me and I knew not what to do; but he stood
behind the door, shaking for mirth; and, when he saw me thus, he said to
me, “I conjure thee on my life, O Abu Ali, tell who it was composed this

 I lay in her arms all night, leaving him ✿ To sleep foul-hearted but
    clean of staff.

At this my rage redoubled, and I replied, “He who wrote this other

 One, I wish him in belt a thousand horns, ✿ Exceeding in mighty height

Then I began to abuse him and reproach him with the foulness of his
action and his lack of honour; and he was silent never uttering a word.
But, when I had finished, he smiled and said, “Out on thee, O fool! Thou
hast entered my house and sold my kerchief and spent my silver: so, with
whom art thou wroth, O pimp?”[186] Then he left me and went away to her,
whilst I said, “By Allah, thou art right to twit me as nincompoop and
pander!” Then I left his door and went away in sore concern, and I feel
its trace in my heart to this very day; for I never had my will of her
nor, indeed, ever heard of her more. And amongst other tales is that


Footnote 181:

  Whose by name was Abu Ali, a poet under the Abbasides (eighth and
  ninth centuries).

Footnote 182:

  A well-known quarter of Baghdad, often mentioned in The Nights.

Footnote 183:

  Another well-known poet of the time.

Footnote 184:

  Arab. “Sardáb”: noticed before.

Footnote 185:

  A gigantic idol in the Ka’abah, destroyed by Mohammed: it gave name to
  a tribe.

Footnote 186:

  Arab. “Ya Kawwád:” hence the Port. and Span. Alcoviteiro.

                    ISAAC OF MOSUL AND THE MERCHANT.

(Quoth Ishak bin Ibrahim al-Mausili), It so chanced that, one day
feeling weary of being on duty at the Palace and in attendance upon the
Caliph, I mounted horse and went forth, at break of dawn, having a mind
to ride out in the open country and take my pleasure. So I said to my
servants, “If there come a messenger from the Caliph or another, say
that I set out at daybreak, upon a pressing business, and that ye know
not whither I am gone.” Then I fared forth alone and went round about
the city, till the sun waxed hot, when I halted in a great thoroughfare
known as Al-Haram,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
to say her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Ishak bin Ibrahim
the Mausili continued:—When the sun waxed hot I halted in a great
thoroughfare known as Al-Haram, to take shelter in the shade and found
it in a spacious wing of a house which projected over the street. And I
stood there but a little while before there came up a black slave,
leading an ass bestridden by a damsel; and under her were housings set
with gems and pearls and upon her were the richest of clothes, richness
can go no farther; and I saw that she was elegant of make with
languorous look and graceful mien. I asked one of the passers-by who she
was, and he said, “She is a singer,” so I fell in love with her at first
sight: hardly could I keep my seat on horseback. She entered the house
at whose gate I stood; and, as I was planning a device to gain access to
her, there came up two men young and comely who asked admission and the
housemaster gave them leave to enter. So they alighted and I also and
they entered and I with them, they supposing that the master of the
house had invited me; and we sat awhile, till food was brought and we
ate. Then they set wine before us, and the damsel came out, with a lute
in her hand. She sang and we drank, till I rose to obey a call of
nature. Thereupon the host questioned the two others of me, and they
replied that they knew me not; whereupon quoth he, “This is a
parasite[187]; but he is a pleasant fellow, so treat him courteously.”
Then I came back and sat down in my place, whilst the damsel sang to a
pleasing air these two couplets:—

 Say to the she-gazelle, who’s no gazelle, ✿ And Kohl’d ariel who’s no
 Who lies with male, and yet no female is, ✿ Whose gait is female most
    unlike the male.

She sang it right well, and the company drank and her song pleased them.
Then she carolled various pieces to rare measures, and amongst the rest
one of mine, which consisted of this distich:—

 Bare hills and camp-ground desolate ✿ And friends who all have ganged
    their gait.
 How severance after union leaves ✿ Me and their homes in saddest state!

Her singing this time was even better than the first; then she chanted
other rare pieces, old and new, and amongst them, another of mine with
the following two couplets:—

 Say to angry lover who turns away, ✿ And shows thee his side whatso thou
 “Thou wroughtest all that by thee was wrought, ✿ Albe ‘twas haply thy
    sport and play.”

I prayed her to repeat the song, that I might correct it for her;
whereupon one of the two men accosted me and said, “Never saw we a more
impudent lick-platter than thou. Art thou not content with spunging, but
thou must eke meddle and muddle? Of very sooth, in thee is the saying
made true, Parasite and pushing wight.” So I hung down my head for shame
and made him no answer, whilst his companion would have withheld him
from me; but he would not be restrained. Presently, they rose to pray,
but I lagged behind a little and, taking the lute, screwed up the sides
and brought it into perfect tune. Then I stood up in my place to pray
with the rest; and when we had ended praying, the same man fell again to
blaming me and reviling me and persisted in his rudeness, whilst I held
my peace. Thereupon the damsel took the lute and touching it, knew that
it had been altered, and said, “Who hath touched my lute?” Quoth they,
“None of us hath touched it.” Quoth she, “Nay, by Allah, some one hath
touched it, and he is an artist, a past master in the craft; for he hath
arranged the strings and tuned them like one who is a perfect
performer.” Said I, “It was I tuned it;” and said she, “Then, Allah upon
thee, take it and play on it!” So I took it; and, playing a piece so
difficult and so rare, that it went nigh to deaden the quick and quicken
the dead, I sang thereto these couplets:—

 I had a heart, and with it lived my life: ✿ ‘Twas seared with fire and
    burnt with loving-lowe:
 I never won the blessing of her love; ✿ God would not on His slave such
    boon bestow:
 If what I’ve tasted be the food of Love, ✿ Must taste it all men who
    Love-food would know.

And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

           Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Ishak of Mosul
thus continued:—Now when I had finished my verse, there was not one of
the company but sprang from his place and sat down like schoolboys
before me, saying, “Allah upon thee, O our lord, sing us another song.”
“With pleasure” said I, and playing another measure in masterly fashion,
sang thereto these couplets:—

 Ho thou whose heart is melted down by force of Amor’s fire, ✿ And griefs
    from every side against thy happiness conspire:
 Unlawful is that he who pierced my vitals with his shaft, ✿ My blood
    between my midriff and my breast-bone[189] he desire,
 ‘Twas plain, upon our severance-day, that he had set his mind ✿ On an
    eternal parting, moved by tongue of envious liar:
 He sheds my blood he ne’er had shed except by wound of love; ✿ Will none
    demand my blood of him, my wreak of him require?

When I had made an end of this song, there was not one of them but rose
to his feet and threw himself upon the ground for excess of delight.
Then I cast the lute from my hand, but they said, “Allah upon thee, do
not on this wise, but let us hear another song, so Allah Almighty
increase thee of His bounty!” Replied I, “O folk, I will sing you
another song and another and another and will tell you who I am. I am
Ishak bin Ibrahim al-Mausili, and by Allah, I bear myself proudly to the
Caliph when he seeketh me. Ye have to-day made me hear abuse from an
unmannerly carle such as I loathe; and by Allah, I will not speak a word
nor sit with you, till ye put yonder quarrelsome churl out from among
you!” Quoth the fellow’s companion to him, “This is what I warned thee
against, fearing for thy good name.” So they hent him by the hand and
thrust him out; and I took the lute and sang over again the songs of my
own composing which the damsel had sung. Then I whispered the host that
she had taken my heart and that I had no patience to abstain from her.
Quoth he, “She is thine on one condition.” I asked, “What is that?” and
he answered, “It is that thou abide with me a month, when the damsel and
all belonging to her of raiment and jewellery shall be thine.” I
rejoined, “It is well, I will do this.” So I tarried with him a whole
month, whilst none knew where I was and the Caliph sought me everywhere,
but could come by no news of me; and at the end of this time, the
merchant delivered to me the damsel, together with all that pertained to
her of things of price and an eunuch to attend upon her. So I brought
all that to my lodging, feeling as I were lord of the whole world, for
exceeding delight in her; then I rode forthright to Al-Maamun. And when
I stood in the presence, he said, “Woe to thee, O Ishak, where hast thou
been?” So I acquainted him with the story and he said, “Bring me that
man at once.” Thereupon I told him where he lived and he sent and
fetched him and questioned him of the case; when he repeated the story
and the Caliph said to him, “Thou art a man of right generous mind, and
it is only fitting that thou be aided in thy generosity.” Then he
ordered him an hundred thousand dirhams and said to me, “O Ishak, bring
the damsel before me.” So I brought her to him, and she sang and
delighted him; and being greatly gladdened by her he said to me, “I
appoint her turn of service every Thursday, when she must come and sing
to me from behind the curtain.” And he ordered her fifty thousand
dirhams, so by Allah, I profited both myself and others by my ride. And
amongst the tales they tell is one of


Footnote 187:

  Arab. “Tufayli,” a term before noticed; the class was as well known in
  Baghdad and Cairo as in ancient Rome.

Footnote 188:

  Arab. “Jauzar” = a bubalus (Antilope defessa), also called “Ayn” from
  the large black eyes. This bovine antelope is again termed Bakar
  al-Wahsh (wild cattle) or “Bos Sylvestris” (incerti generis, Forsk.).
  But Jauzar also signifies hart, so I render it by “Ariel” (the
  well-known antelope).

Footnote 189:

  Arab. “Taráib” plur. of taríbah. The allusion is to the heart, and
  “the little him’s a her.”

                     THE THREE UNFORTUNATE LOVERS.

(Quoth Al-‘Utbí,[190]) I was sitting one day with a company of educated
men, telling stories of the folk, when the talk turned upon legends of
lovers and each of us said his say thereanent. Now there was in our
company an old man, who remained silent, till all had spoken and had no
more to say, when quoth he, “Shall I tell you a thing, the like of which
you never heard; no, never?” “Yes,” quoth we; and he said, “Know, then,
that I had a daughter, who loved a youth, but we knew it not; while the
youth loved a singing-girl, who in her turn loved my daughter. One day,
I was present at an assembly, wherein were also the youth”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Four Hundred and Tenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Shaykh
continued:—One day, I was present at an assembly wherein were also the
youth and the singing-girl and she chanted to us these couplets:—

       Prove how Love bringeth low ✿ Lover those tears that run;
       Lowering him still the more ✿ When pity finds he none.

Cried the youth, “By Allah, thou hast said well, O my mistress! Dost
thou incite me to die?” Answered the girl from behind the curtain, “Yes,
if thou be a true lover.” So he laid his head on a cushion and closed
his eyes; and when the cup came round to him, we shook him and behold,
he was dead.[191] Therewith we all flocked to him, and our pleasure was
troubled and we grieved and broke up at once. When I came home, my
people took in bad part my returning before the appointed time, and I
told them what had befallen the youth, thinking that thereby I should
greatly surprise them. My daughter heard my words and rising, went from
the sitting-chamber into another, whither I followed her and found her
lying with her head on a cushion, even as I had told of the young man.
So I shook her and lo! she was dead. Then we laid her out and set forth
next morning to bury her, whilst the friends of the young man set forth
in like guise to bury him. As we were on the way to the burial-place, we
met a third funeral and asking whose it was, were told that it was that
of the singing-girl who, hearing of my daughter’s death, had done even
as she did and was dead. So we buried them all three on one day, and
this is the rarest tale that ever was heard of lovers. And they also
tell a tale of


Footnote 190:

  A well-known poet of the ninth century (A.D.)

Footnote 191:

  These easy deaths for love are a _lieu commun_: See sundry of them in
  the Decameron (iv. 7, etc.); and, in the Heptameron (Nouv. lxx.), the
  widow who lay down and died of love and sorrow that her passion had
  become known. For the fainting of lovers see Nouvelle xix.

                       HOW ABU HASAN BRAKE WIND.

They recount that in the City Kaukabán of Al-Yaman there was a man of
the Fazlí tribe who had left Badawi life, and become a townsman for many
years and was a merchant of the most opulent merchants. His wife had
deceased when both were young; and his friends were instant with him to
marry again, ever quoting to him the words of the poet:—

            Go, gossip! re-wed thee, for Prime draweth near:
            A wife is an almanac—good for the year.

So being weary of contention, Abu Hasan entered into negotiations with
the old women who procure matches, and married a maid like Canopus when
he hangeth over the seas of Al-Hind. He made high festival therefor,
bidding to the wedding-banquet kith and kin, Olema and Fakirs; friends
and foes and all his acquaintances of that country-side. The whole house
was thrown open to feasting: there were rices of five several colours,
and sherbets of as many more; and kids stuffed with walnuts and almonds
and pistachios and a camel-colt[192] roasted whole. So they ate and
drank and made mirth and merriment; and the bride was displayed in her
seven dresses and one more, to the women, who could not take their eyes
off her. At last, the bridegroom was summoned to the chamber where she
sat enthroned; and he rose slowly and with dignity from his divan; but
in so doing, for that he was over full of meat and drink, lo and behold!
he let fly a fart, great and terrible. Thereupon each guest turned to
his neighbour and talked aloud and made as though he had heard nothing,
fearing for his life. But a consuming fire was lit in Abu Hasan’s heart;
so he pretended a call of nature; and, in lieu of seeking the
bride-chamber, he went down to the house-court and saddled his mare and
rode off, weeping bitterly, through the shadow of the night. In time he
reached Láhej where he found a ship ready to sail for India; so he
shipped on board and made Calicut of Malabar. Here he met with many
Arabs, especially Hazramís,[193] who recommended him to the King; and
this King (who was a Kafir) trusted him and advanced him to the
captain-ship of his body-guard. He remained ten years in all solace and
delight of life; at the end of which time he was seized with
home-sickness; and the longing to behold his native land was that of a
lover pining for his beloved; and he came near to die of yearning
desire. But his appointed day had not dawned; so, after taking the first
bath of health, he left the King without leave, and in due course landed
at Makallá of Hazramaut. Here he donned the rags of a religious; and,
keeping his name and case secret, fared for Kaukaban afoot; enduring a
thousand hardships of hunger, thirst and fatigue; and braving a thousand
dangers from the lion, the snake and the Ghul. But when he drew near his
old home, he looked down upon it from the hills with brimming eyes, and
said in himself, “Haply they might know thee; so I will wander about the
outskirts, and hearken to the folk. Allah grant that my case be not
remembered by them!” He listened carefully for seven nights and seven
days, till it so chanced that, as he was sitting at the door of a hut,
he heard the voice of a young girl saying, “O my mother, tell me the day
when I was born; for such an one of my companions is about to take an
omen[194] for me.” And the mother answered, “Thou was born, O my
daughter, on the very night when Abu Hasan farted.” Now the listener no
sooner heard these words than he rose up from the bench, and fled away
saying to himself, “Verily thy fart hath become a date, which shall last
for ever and ever; even as the poet said:”—

 As long as palms shall shift the flower; ✿ As long as palms shall sift
    the flour.[195]

And he ceased not travelling and voyaging and returned to India; and
there abode in self-exile till he died; and the mercy of Allah be upon
him![196] And they tell another story of


Footnote 192:

  This is a favourite Badawi dish, but too expensive unless some
  accident happen to the animal. Old camel is much like bull-beef, but
  the young meat is excellent, although not relished by Europeans
  because, like strange fish, it has no recognised flavour. I have
  noticed it in my “First Footsteps” (p. 68, etc.). There is an old idea
  in Europe that the maniacal vengeance of the Arab is increased by
  eating this flesh; the beast is certainly vindictive enough; but a
  furious and frantic vengefulness characterises the North American
  Indian who never saw a camel. Mercy and pardon belong to the elect,
  not to the miserables who make up “humanity.”

Footnote 193:

  _i.e._, of the Province Hazramaut, the Biblical Hazarmaveth (Gen. x.
  26). The people are the Swiss of Arabia and noted for thrift and hard
  bargains; hence the saying, If you meet a serpent and a Hazrami, slay
  the Hazrami. To prove how ubiquitous they are it is related that a
  man, flying from their society, reached the uttermost parts of China
  where he thought himself safe. But, as he was about to pass the night
  in some ruin, he heard a voice hard by him exclaim, O ‘Imád al-Din!
  (the name of the patron-saint of Hazramaut). Thereupon he arose and
  fled and he is, they say, flying still.

Footnote 194:

  Arab. “Fál” alluding to the Sortes Coranicæ and other silly practices
  known to the English servant-girl when curious about her future and
  her _futur_.

Footnote 195:

  _i.e._, in Arab-land (where they eat dates) and Ajam, or lands
  non-Arab (where bread is the staff of life); that is, all the world

Footnote 196:

  This story is curious and ethnologically valuable. The Badawi who
  eructates as a civility, has a mortal hatred to a _crepitus ventris_;
  and were a by-stander to laugh at its accidental occurrence, he would
  at once be cut down as a “pundonor.” The same is the custom amongst
  the Highlanders of Afghanistan, and its artificial nature suggests
  direct derivation; for the two regions are separated by a host of
  tribes, Persians and Baloch, Sindis and Panjábis who utterly ignore
  the point of honour and behave like Europeans. The raids of the
  pre-Islamitic Arabs over the lands lying to the north-east of them are
  almost forgotten; still there are traces, and this may be one of them.

                      THE LOVERS OF THE BANU TAYY.

Kásim, son of Adi, was wont to relate that a man of the Banú Tamím spake
as follows. I went out one day in search of an estray and, coming to the
waters of the Banu Tayy, saw two companies of people near one another,
and behold, those of one company were disputing among themselves even as
the other. So I watched them and observed, in one of the companies, a
youth wasted with sickness, as he were a worn-out dried-up water-skin.
And as I looked on him, lo! he repeated these couplets:—

 What ails the Beauty she returneth not? ✿ Is’t Beauty’s irk or grudging
    to my lot?
 I sickened and my friends all came to call; ✿ What stayed thee calling
    with the friendly knot?
 Hadst thou been sick, I had come running fast ✿ To thee, nor threats had
    kept me from the spot:
 Mid them I miss thee, and I lie alone; ✿ Sweetheart, to lose thy love
    sad loss I wot!

His words were heard by a damsel in the other company who hastened
towards him, and when her people followed her, she fought them off. Then
the youth caught sight of her and sprang up and ran towards her, whilst
the people of his party ran after him and laid hold of him. However he
haled and freed himself from them, and she in like manner loosed
herself; and, when they were free, each ran to other and meeting between
the two parties, embraced and fell dead upon the ground.——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

          Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eleventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the young man and
the maid met between the two parties and embraced and both fell dead
upon the ground; whereat came there out an old man from one of the tents
and stood over them exclaiming, “Verily, we are Allah’s and unto Him we
are returning!” Then weeping sore he said, “Allah have ruth on you both!
by the Almighty, though you were not united in your lives, I will at
least unite you after your deaths.” And he bade lay them out: so they
washed them and shrouded them in one shroud and dug for them one grave
and prayed one prayer over them both and buried them in one tomb; nor
was there man or woman in the two parties but I saw weeping over them
and buffeting their faces. Then I questioned the Shaykh of them, and he
said, “She was my daughter and he my brother’s son; and love brought
them to the pass thou seest.” I exclaimed, “Allah amend thee! but why
didst thou not marry them to each other?” Quoth he, “I feared shame[197]
and dishonour; and now I am fallen into both.” And they tell a tale of


Footnote 197:

  Arab. “Al-‘Ár.” The Badawi saying is “Al-nár wa lá ‘l-‘ár”
  (Hell-)fire, but not shame. The sentiment is noble. Hasan the
  Prophet’s grandson, a poor creature demoralised by over-marrying,
  chose the converse, “Shame is better than Hell-fire.” An old Arabic
  poem has:—

                The Fire and not shame be the Lord of thee
                And e’en to The Fire from shame go flee.

  Al-Hariri (Ass. of the Badawin) also has:—

               For rather would I die my death than shame,—
               On bier be borne than bear a caitiff’s name.

                             THE MAD LOVER.

Quoth Abu ‘l-Abbás al-Mubarrad,[198] I set out one day with a company to
Al-Bárid on an occasion and, coming to the monastery of Hirakl,[199] we
alighted in its shade. Presently a man came out to us and said, “There
are madmen in the monastery,[200] and amongst them one who speaketh
wisdom; if ye saw him, ye would marvel at his speech.” So we arose all
and went into the monastery, where we saw a man seated on a skin-mat in
one of the cells, with bare head and eyes intently fixed upon the wall.
We saluted him, and he returned our salam, without looking at us; and
one said to us, “Repeat some verses to him; for, when he heareth verse,
he speaketh.” So I repeated these two couplets:—

 O best of race to whom gave Hawwá[201] boon of birth, ✿ Except for thee
    the world were neither sweet nor fair!
 Thou’rt he, whose face, by Allah shown to man, ✿ Doth ward off death,
    decay and hoary hair.

When he heard from me this praise of the Apostle he turned towards us
and repeated these lines:—

 Well Allah wotteth I am sorely plagued: ✿ Nor can I show my pain to
    human sight.
 Two souls have I; one soul is here contained, ✿ While other woneth in
    another site
 Meseems the absent soul’s like present soul, ✿ And that she suffers what
    to me is dight.

Then he asked us, “Have I said well or said ill?” And we answered, “Thou
hast said the clean contrary of ill, well and right well.” Then he put
out his hand to a stone, that was by him and took it up; whereupon
thinking he would throw it at us we fled from him; but he fell to
beating upon his breast therewith violent blows and said to us, “Fear
not, but draw near and hear somewhat from me and receive it from me.” So
we came back, and he repeated these couplets:—

 When they made their camels yellow-white kneel down at dawning grey, ✿
    They mounted her on crupper and the camel went his way,
 Mine eye-balls through the prison-wall beheld them, and I cried ✿ With
    streaming eyelids and a heart that burnt in dire dismay,
 “O camel-driver turn thy beast that I farewell my love! ✿ In parting and
    farewelling her I see my doomèd day:
 I’m faithful to my vows of love which I have never broke; ✿ Would Heaven
    I kenned what they have done with vows that vowèd they!”

Then he looked at me and said, “Say me, dost thou know what they
did?”[202] Answered I, “Yes, they are dead; Almighty Allah have mercy on
them!” At this his face changed and he sprang to his feet and cried out,
“How knowest thou they be dead?;” and I replied, “Were they alive they
had not left thee thus.” Quoth he, “By Allah, thou art right, and I care
not to live after them.” Then his side-muscles quivered and he fell on
his face; and we ran up to him and shook him and found him dead, the
mercy of the Almighty be on him! At this we marvelled and mourned for
him and, sore mourning, laid him out and buried him.——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

          Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twelfth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Al-Mubarrad thus
continued:—When the man fell we mourned over him with sore mourning and
laid him out and buried him. And when I returned to Baghdad and went in
to the Caliph Al Mutawakkil, he saw the trace of tears on my face and
said to me, “What is this?” So I told him what had passed and it was
grievous to him and he cried, “What moved thee to deal thus with
him?[203] By Allah, if I thought thou didst not repent it and regret him
I would punish thee therefor!” And he mourned for him the rest of the
day. And amongst the tales they tell is one of


Footnote 198:

  A grammarian and rhetorician of ninth century.

Footnote 199:

  Once existing in Syrian Hamáh (the Biblical Hamath); and so called
  because here died the Emperor Heraclius called by the Arabs “Hirakl.”

Footnote 200:

  Till lately it was the custom to confine madmen in Syrian monasteries,
  hoping a cure from the patron Saint; and a terrible time they had of
  it. Every guide book relates the healing process as formerly pursued
  at the Maronite Convent Koshaya not far from Bayrut. The idiot or
  maniac was thrust headlong by the monks into a dismal cavern with a
  heavy chain round his neck, and was tied up within a span of the wall
  to await the arrival of Saint Anthony who especially affects this holy
  place. In very few weeks the patient was effectually cured or killed
  by cold, solitude and starvation.

Footnote 201:

  The Moslem Eve, much nearer the Hebrew “Hawah” = the “manifester,”
  because (Gen. iii. 20) she was (to be) the mother of all that live
  (“Kull hayy”).

Footnote 202:

  The mad lover says “they” for “she,” which would be too familiar in
  speaking to strangers.

Footnote 203:

  _i.e._ falsely to report the death.

                     THE PRIOR WHO BECAME A MOSLEM.

Quoth Abu Bakr Mohammed ibn Al-Anbári[204]:—I once left Anbár on a
journey to ‘Amúríyah,[205] where there came out to me the prior of the
monastery and superior of the monkery, Abd al-Masíh hight, and brought
me into the building. There I found forty religious, who entertained me
that night with fair guest-rite, and I left them after seeing among them
such diligence in adoration and devotion as I never beheld the like of
in any others. Next day I farewelled them and fared forth and, after
doing my business at ‘Amuriyah, I returned to my home at Anbar. And next
year I made pilgrimage to Meccah and as I was circumambulating the Holy
House I saw Abd al-Masih the monk also compassing the Ka’abah, and with
him five of his fellows, the shavelings. Now when I was sure that it was
indeed he, I accosted him, saying, “Art thou not Abd al-Masih, the
Religious?” and he replied, “Nay, I am Abdallah, the Desirous.”[206]
Therewith I fell to kissing his grey hairs and shedding tears; then,
taking him by the hand, I led him aside into a corner of the Temple and
said to him, “Tell me the cause of thy conversion to Al-Islam;” and he
made reply, “Verily, ‘twas a wonder of wonders, and befel thus. A
company of Moslem devotees came to the village wherein is our convent,
and sent a youth to buy them food. He saw, in the market, a Christian
damsel selling bread, who was of the fairest of women; and he was struck
at first sight with such love of her, that his senses failed him and he
fell on his face in a fainting-fit.” When he revived, he returned to his
companions and told them what had befallen him, saying, “Go ye about
your business; I may not go with you.” They chided him and exhorted him,
but he paid no heed to them; so they left him whilst he entered the
village and seated himself at the door of the woman’s booth.[207] She
asked him what he wanted, and he told her that he was in love with her,
whereupon she turned from him; but he abode in his place three days
without tasting food, keeping his eyes fixed on her face. Now whenas she
saw that he departed not from her, she went to her people and acquainted
them with his case, and they set on him the village boys, who stoned him
and bruised his ribs and broke his head; but, for all this, he would not
budge. Then the villagers took counsel together to slay him; but a man
of them came to me and told me of his case, and I went out to him and
found him lying prostrate on the ground. So I wiped the blood from his
face and carried him to the convent, and dressed his wounds; and there
he abode with me fourteen days. But as soon as he could walk, he left
the monastery——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Abdallah the
Religious continued:—So I carried him to the convent and dressed his
wounds, and he abode with me fourteen days. But as soon as he could
walk, he left the monastery and returned to the door of the woman’s
booth, where he sat gazing on her as before. When she saw him, she came
out to him and said, “By Allah, thou movest me to pity! wilt thou enter
my faith that I may marry thee?” He cried, “Allah forbid that I should
put off the faith of Unity and enter that of Plurality!”[208] Quoth she,
“Come in with me to my house and take thy will of me and wend thy ways
in peace.” Quoth he, “Not so, I will not waste the worship of twelve
years for the lust of an eye-twinkle.” Said she, “Then depart from me
forthwith;” and he said, “My heart will not suffer me to do that;”
whereupon she turned her countenance from him. Presently the boys found
him out and began to pelt him with stones; and he fell on his face,
saying, “Verily, Allah is my protector, who sent down the Book of the
Koran; and He protecteth the Righteous!”[209] At this I sallied forth
and driving away the boys, lifted his head from the ground and heard him
say, “Allah mine, unite me with her in Paradise!” Then I carried him to
the monastery; but he died, before I could reach it, and I bore him
without the village and I dug for him a grave and buried him. And next
night when half of it was spent, the damsel cried with a great cry (and
she in her bed); so the villagers flocked to her and questioned her of
her case. Quoth she, “As I slept, behold the Moslem man came in to me
and taking me by the hand, carried me to the gate of Paradise; but the
Guardian denied me entrance, saying:—’Tis forbidden to unbelievers. So I
embraced Al-Islam at his hands and, entering with him, beheld therein
pavilions and trees, such as I cannot describe to you. Moreover, he
brought me to a pavilion of jewels and said to me, Of a truth this is my
pavilion and thine, nor will I enter it save with thee; but, after five
nights thou shalt be with me therein, if it be the will of Allah
Almighty. Then he put forth his hand to a tree which grew at the door of
the pavilion and plucked therefrom two apples and gave them to me,
saying:—Eat this and keep the other, that the monks may see it. So I ate
one of them and never tasted I aught sweeter.——And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fourteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the woman
continued:—So he plucked two apples and gave them to me, saying, “Eat
this and keep the other that the monks may see it.” So I ate one of them
and never tasted I aught sweeter. Then he took my hand and fared forth
and carried me back to my house; and, when I awoke, I found the taste of
the apple in my mouth and the other in my hand.” So saying she brought
out the apple, and in the darkness of the night it shone as it were a
sparkling star. So they carried her (and the apple with her) to the
monastery, where she repeated her vision and showed it to us; never saw
we its like among all the fruits of the world. Then I took a knife and
cut the apple into pieces according as we were folk in company; and
never knew we aught more delicious than its savour nor more delightsome
than its scent; but we said, “Haply this was a devil that appeared unto
her to seduce her from her faith.” Thereupon her people took her and
went away; but she abstained from eating and drinking and on the fifth
night she rose from her bed, and going forth the village to the grave of
her Moslem lover threw herself upon it and died, her family not knowing
what was come of her. But, on the morrow, there came to the village two
Moslem elders, clad in hair-cloth, and with them two women in like garb,
and said, “O people of the village, with you is a woman Saint, a Wáliyah
of the friends of Allah, who died a Moslemah; and we will take charge of
her in lieu of you.” So the villagers sought her and found her dead on
the Moslem’s grave; and they said, “This was one of us and she died in
our faith; so we will take charge of her.” Rejoined the two old men,
“Nay, she died a Moslemah and we claim her.” And the dispute waxed to a
quarrel between them, till one of the Shaykhs said, “Be this the test of
her faith: the forty monks of the monastery shall come and try to lift
her from the grave. If they succeed, then she died a Nazarene; if not,
one of us shall come and lift her up and if she be lifted by him, she
died a Moslemah.” The villagers agreed to this and fetched the forty
monks, who heartened one another, and came to her to lift her, but could
not. Then we tied a great rope round her middle and haled at it; but the
rope broke in sunder, and she stirred not; and the villagers came and
did the like, but could not move her from her place.[210] At last, when
all means failed, we said to one of the two Shaykhs, “Come thou and lift
her.” So he went up to the grave and, covering her with his mantle,
said, “In the name of Allah the Compassionating, the Compassionate, and
of the Faith of the Apostle of Allah, on whom be prayers and peace!”
Then he lifted her and, taking her in his bosom, betook himself with her
to a cave hard by, where they laid her, and the two women came and
washed her and shrouded her. Then the two elders bore her to her Moslem
lover’s grave and prayed over her and buried her by his side and went
their ways. Now we were eye-witnesses of all this; and, when we were
alone with one another, we said, “‘In sooth, the truth is most worthy to
be followed;’[211] and indeed the verity hath been made manifest to us,
nor is there a proof more patent of the truth of Al-Islam than that we
have seen this day with our eyes.” So I and all the monks became Moslems
and on like wise did the villagers; and we sent to the people of
Mesopotamia for a doctor of the law, to instruct us in the ordinances of
Al-Islam and the canons of the Faith. They sent us a learned man and a
pious, who taught us the rites of prayer and the tenets of the faith;
and we are now in ease abounding; so to Allah be the praise and the
thanks! And they also tell a tale of


Footnote 204:

  A famous grammarian, etc., of the tenth century.

Footnote 205:

  The classical Amorium in Phrygia now Anatolia: Anbár is a town (before
  mentioned) on the Euphrates; by the rules of Arabic grammar the word
  is pronounced (though never written) Ambár.

Footnote 206:

  “Art thou not the slave of the Messiah, the Ráhib (monk)?” “No! I am
  the slave of Allah, the Rághib (desirous of mercy from the Almighty).”
  A fair specimen of the Saj’a or rhymed prose. Abdallah (properly
  “Abdu’llah”) is a kind of neutral name, neither Jewish, Moslem nor
  Christian; hence I adopted it (Pilgrimage i. 20).

Footnote 207:

  Arab. “Hanút,” prop. a tavern where liquors are sold; a term applied
  contemptuously to shops, inns, etc., kept by Christians.

Footnote 208:

  Arab. “Shirk” = syntheism of the “Mushrik” (one who makes other Gods
  partners with God), a word pronounced “Mushrit” by the Wahhabis and
  the Badawin.

Footnote 209:

  Koran vii. 195. The passage declaims against the idols of the Arabs,
  sun, moon, stars, etc.

Footnote 210:

  This minor miracle is commonly reported, and is not, I believe,
  unknown to modern “Spiritualism.” The dead Wali or Waliyah (Saintess)
  often impels the bier-bearers to the spot where he would be buried:
  hence in Cairo the tombs scattered about the city. Lane notices it,
  Mod. E. chapt. xxviii.

Footnote 211:

  Koran x. 36, speaking of being turned aside from the true worship.


Quoth Amrú bin Masa’dah:[212]—Abú Isá, son of Al-Rashíd and brother to
Al-Maamun, was enamoured of one Kurrat al-Ayn, a slave-girl belonging to
Ali bin Hishám,[213] and she also loved him; but he concealed his
passion, complaining of it to none neither discovering his secret to
anyone, of his pride and magnanimity; for he had used his utmost
endeavour to purchase her of her master, but he had failed. At last when
his patience was at an end and his passion was sore on him and he was
helpless in the matter, he went in to Al-Maamun, one day of state after
the folk had retired, and said to him, “O Commander of the Faithful, if
thou wilt this day make trial of thine Alcaydes by taking them unawares,
thou wilt know the generous from the mean and note each one’s place,
after the quality of his mind.” But, in saying this he purposed only to
sit with Kurrat al-Ayn in her lord’s house. Quoth Al-Maamun, “Right is
thy recking,” and bade make ready a barge, called ‘the Flyer,’ wherein
he embarked with Abu Isa and a party of his chief officers. The first
mansion he visited unexpectedly was that of Hamíd al-Tawíl of Tús, whom
he found seated——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Al-Maamun embarked
with his chief officers and fared on till they reached the mansion of
Hamíd al-Tawíl of Tús; and, unexpectedly entering, they found him seated
on a mat and before him singers and players, with lutes and flageolets
and other instruments of music in their hands. So Al-Maamun sat with him
awhile and presently he set before him dishes of nothing but fleshmeat,
with no birds among them. The Caliph would not taste thereof and Abu Isa
said to him, “O Commander of the Faithful, we have taken the owner of
this place unawares, and he knew not of thy coming; but now let us go to
another place which is prepared for thee and fitted for thee.” Thereupon
the Caliph arose and betook himself with his brother Abu Isa and his
suite, to the abode of Ali son of Hishám who, on hearing of their
approach, came out and received them with the goodliest of reception,
and kissed the earth before the King. Then he brought them into his
mansion and opened to them a saloon than which seer never saw a
goodlier. Its floors, pillars and walls were of many-coloured marbles,
adorned with Greek paintings: and it was spread with matting of
Sind[214] whereon were carpets and tapestry of Bassorah make, fitted to
the length and breadth of the room. So the Caliph sat awhile, examining
the house and its ceilings and walls, then said, “Give us somewhat to
eat.” So they brought him forthwith nearly an hundred dishes of poultry
besides other birds and brewises, fritters and cooling marinades. When
he had eaten, he said, “Give us something to drink, O Ali;” and the host
set before him, in vessels of gold and silver and crystal, raisin-wine
boiled down to one third with fruits and spices; and the cupbearers were
pages like moons, clad in garments of Alexandrian stuff interwoven with
gold and bearing on their breasts beakers of crystal, full of rose-water
mingled with musk. So Al-Maamun marvelled with exceeding marvel at all
he saw and said, “Ho thou, Abu al-Hasan!” Whereupon Ali sprang to the
Caliph’s carpet and kissing it, said, “At thy service, O Commander of
the Faithful!” and stood before him. Quoth Al-Maamun, “Let us hear some
pleasant and merry song.” Replied Ali, “I hear and obey, O Commander of
the Faithful,” and said to one of his eunuchs, “Fetch the
singing-women.” So the slave went out and presently returned, followed
by ten castratos, bearing ten stools of gold, which they set down in due
order; and after these came ten damsels, concubines of the master, as
they were shining full moons or gardens full of bloom, clad in black
brocade, with crowns of gold on their heads; and they passed along the
room till they sat down on the stools, when sang they sundry songs.
Al-Maamun looked at one of them; and, being captivated by her elegance
and fair favour, asked her, “What is thy name, O damsel?”; and she
answered, “My name is Sajáhí,[215] O Commander of the Faithful,” and he
said, “Sing to us, O Sajahi!” So she played a lively measure and sang
these couplets:—

 I walk, for fear of interview, the weakling’s walk ✿ Who sees two
    lion-whelps the fount draw nigh:
 My cloak acts sword, my heart’s perplext with fright, ✿ Lest jealous
    hostile eyes th’ approach descry:
 Till sudden hapt I on a delicate maid ✿ Like desert-doe that fails her
    fawns to espy.

Quoth the Caliph, “Thou hast done well, O damsel! whose are these
lines?” She answered, “Written by Amru bin Ma’di Karib al-Zubaydi,[216]
and the air is Ma’abid’s.”[217] Then the Caliph and Abu Isa and Ali
drank and the damsels went away and were succeeded by other ten, all
clad in flowered silk of Al-Yaman, brocaded with gold, who sat down on
the chairs and sang various songs. The Caliph looked at one of the
concubines, who was like a wild heifer of the waste, and said to her,
“What is thy name, O damsel?” She replied, “My name is Zabiyah,[218] O
Commander of the Faithful;” and he, “Sing to us, Zabiyah;” so she
warbled like a bird with many a trill and sang these two couplets:—

 Houris, and high-born Dames who feel no fear of men; ✿ Like Meccan game
    forbidden man to slam:[219]
 Their soft sweet voices make you deem them whores, ✿ But bars them from
    all whoring Al-Islam.

When she had finished, Al-Maamun cried, “Favoured of Allah art
thou!”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
slave-girl finished her song, Al-Maamun cried, “Favoured of Allah art
thou! Whose is this verse?” and she answered, “Jarír’s[220] and the air
is by Ibn Surayj.” Then the Caliph and his company drank, whilst the
girls went away and there came forth yet other ten, as they were rubies,
robed in red brocade inwoven with gold and purfled with pearls and
jewels whilst all their heads were bare. They sat down on the stools and
sang various airs; so the Caliph looked at one of them, who was like the
sun of the day, and asked her, “What is thy name, O damsel?”; and she
answered, “O Commander of the Faithful, my name is Fátin.” “Sing to us,
O Fatin,” quoth he; whereat she played a lively measure and sang these

 Deign grant thy favours; since ‘tis time I were engraced; ✿ Enough of
    severance hath it been my lot to taste.
 Thou’rt he whose face doth every gift and charm unite; ✿ Yet is my
    patience spent for that ‘twas sore misplaced:
 I’ve wasted life in loving thee; and would high Heaven ✿ Grant me one
    meeting hour for all this wilful waste.

“Well sung, O Fatin!” exclaimed the Caliph; “whose verse is this?” And
she answered, “Adi bin Zayd’s, and the air is antique.” Then all three
drank, whilst the damsels retired and were succeeded by other ten
maidens, as they were sparkling stars, clad in flowered silk embroidered
with red gold and girt with jewelled zones. They sat down and sang
various motives; and the Caliph asked one of them, who was like a wand
of willow, “What is thy name, O damsel?”; and she answered, “My name is
Rashaa[221], O Commander of the Faithful.” “Sing to us, O Rashaa,” quoth
he; so she played a lively measure and sang these couplets:—

 And wand-like Houri, who can passion heal ✿ Like young gazelle that
    paceth o’er the plain:
 I drain this wine-cup on the toast, her cheek; ✿ Each cup disputing till
    she bends in twain,
 Then sleeps the night with me, the while I cry ✿ “This is the only gain
    my Soul would gain!”

Said the Caliph, “Well done, O damsel! Sing us something more.” So she
rose and kissing the ground before him, sang the following distich:—

 She came out to gaze on the bridal at ease ✿ In a shift that reekèd of

The Caliph was highly pleased with this couplet and, when the slave-girl
saw how much it delighted him, she repeated it several times. Then said
Al-Maamun, “Bring up ‘the Flyer,’” being minded to embark and depart:
but Ali bin Hisham said to him, “O Commander of the Faithful, I have a
slave-girl, whom I bought for ten thousand dinars; she hath taken my
heart in whole and part, and I would fain display her to the Commander
of the Faithful. If she please him and he will accept of her, she is
his: and if not, let him hear something from her.” Said the Caliph,
“Bring her to me;” and forth came a damsel, as she were a branchlet of
willow, with seducing eyes and eyebrows set like twin bows; and on her
head she wore a crown of red gold crusted with pearls and jewelled,
under which was a fillet bearing this couplet wrought in letters of

 A Jinniyah this, with her Jinn, to show ✿ How to pierce man’s heart with
    a stringless bow!

The handmaiden walked, with the gait of a gazelle in flight and fit to
damn a devotee, till she came to a chair, whereon she seated
herself.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventeenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the handmaiden
walked with the gait of a gazelle in flight, fit to damn a devotee, till
she came to a chair whereon she seated herself. And Al-Maamun marvelled
at her beauty and loveliness; but, when Abu Isa saw her, his heart
throbbed with pain, his colour changed to pale and wan and he was in
evil case. Asked the Caliph, “O Abu Isa, what aileth thee to change
thus?;” and he answered, “O Commander of the Faithful, it is because of
a twitch that seizeth me bytimes.” Quoth the Caliph, “Hast thou known
yonder damsel before to-day?” Quoth he, “Yes, O Commander of the
Faithful, can the moon be concealed?” Then said Al-Maamun to her, “What
is thy name, O damsel?”; and she replied, “My name is Kurrat al-Ayn, O
Commander of the Faithful,” and he rejoined, “Sing to us, O Kurrat
al-Ayn.” So she sang these two couplets:—

 The loved ones left thee in middle night, ✿ And fared with the pilgrims
    when dawn shone bright:
 The tents of pride round the domes they pitched, ✿ And with broidered
    curtains were veiled fro’ sight.

Quoth the Caliph, “Favoured of Heaven art thou, O Kurrat al-Ayn! Whose
song is that?”; whereto she answered “The words are by Di’ibil
al-Khuza’i, and the air by Zurzúr al-Saghír.” Abu Isa looked at her and
his tears choked him; so that the company marvelled at him. Then she
turned to Al-Maamun and said to him, “O Commander of the Faithful, wilt
thou give me leave to change the words?” Said he, “Sing what thou wilt;”
so she played a merry measure and carolled these couplets:—

 If thou should please a friend who pleaseth thee ✿ Frankly, in public
    practise secrecy.
 And spurn the slanderer’s tale, who seldom[222] seeks ✿ Except the
    severance of true love to see.

 They say, when lover’s near, he tires of love, ✿ And absence is for love
    best remedy:
 Both cures we tried and yet we are not cured, ✿ Withal we judge that
    nearness easier be:
 Yet nearness is of no avail when he ✿ Thou lovest lends thee love

But when she had finished, Abu Isa said, “O Commander of the
Faithful,”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Kurrat al-Ayn
had finished her verse, Abu Isa said, “O Commander of the Faithful,
though we endure disgrace, we shall be at ease.[223] Dost thou give me
leave to reply to her?” Quoth the Caliph, “Yes, say what thou wilt to
her.” So he swallowed his tears and sang these two distichs:—

 Silent I woned and never owned my love; ✿ But from my heart I hid love’s
    blissful boon;
 Yet, if my eyes should manifest my love, ✿ ‘Tis for my nearness to the
    shining moon.

Then Kurrat al-Ayn took the lute and played a lively tune and rejoined
with these couplets:—

 An what thou claimest were the real truth, ✿ With only Hope content thou
    hadst not been;
 Nor couldest patient live without the girl ✿ So rare of inner grace and
    outward mien.
 But there is nothing in the claim of thee ✿ At all, save tongue and talk
    that little mean.

When Abu Isa heard this he fell to weeping and wailing and evidencing
his trouble and anguish. Then he raised his eyes to her and sighing,
repeated these couplets:—

 Under my raiment a waste body lies, ✿ And in my spirit all-comprising
 I have a heart, whose pain shall aye endure, ✿ And tears like torrents
    pour these woeful eyes.

 Whene’er a wise man spies me, straight he chides ✿ Love, that misleads
    me thus in ways unwise:
 O Lord, I lack the power this dole to bear: ✿ Come sudden Death or joy
    in bestest guise!

When he had ended, Ali bin Hisham sprang up and kissing his feet, said,
“O my lord, Allah hearing thy secret hath answered thy prayer and
consenteth to thy taking her with all she hath of things rare and fair,
so the Commander of the Faithful have no mind to her.” Quoth Al-Maamun,
“Had we a mind to her, we would prefer Abu Isa before ourselves and help
him to his desire.” So saying, he rose and embarking, went away, whilst
Abu Isa tarried for Kurrat al-Ayn, whom he took and carried to his own
house, his breast swelling with joy. See then the generosity of Ali son
of Hisham! And they tell a tale of


Footnote 212:

  One of the Wazirs of Al-Maamun; Kurrat al-Ayn = “coolness (_i.e._
  delight) of the eyes.” Ali bin Hishám surnamed Abu ‘l-Hasan, was
  prefect of Baghdad under the same reign.

Footnote 213:

  The Mac. Edit. (ii. 448) reads for Kawáid (plur. of Káid = Governors,
  Span. Alcayde) “Fawáid”; hence Lane (ii. 606) translates “try thy

Footnote 214:

  The mats of Sind were famous even in my day, but under English rule
  native industries are killed out by Manchester and Birmingham.

Footnote 215:

  Sajáh was the name of a famous female impostor, a contemporary of
  “Musaylimah the Liar.”

Footnote 216:

  A poet of Mohammed’s day.

Footnote 217:

  A singer and composer of the first century (A.H.)

Footnote 218:

  Arab. = a roe, a doe; also the Yoni (of women, mares and bitches). It
  is the Heb. Tabitha and the Greek Dorcas.

Footnote 219:

  Within the Hudúd al-Haram (bounds of the Holy Places), at Al-Medinah
  as well as Meccah, all “Muharramát” (forbidden sins) are doubly
  unlawful, such as drinking spirits, immoral life, etc. The Imam Malik
  forbids slaying animals without, however, specifying any penalty. The
  felling of trees is a disputed point; and no man can be put to death
  except invaders, infidels and desecraters (Pilgrimage ii. 167).

Footnote 220:

  A poet of the first century (A.H.)

Footnote 221:

  In Arab. = a fawn beginning to walk; also the 28th lunar mansion or
  station, usually known as Batn al-Hut or Whale’s belly. These mansions
  or houses, the constellations through which the moon passes in her
  course along her orbit, are much used in Moslem astrology and

Footnote 222:

  Arab. Kalla-má = it is seldom (rare) that etc. used in books.

Footnote 223:

  Dishonoured by his love being made public. So Hafiz, Petrarch and


Al-Amin[224], brother of Al-Maamun, once entered the house of his uncle
Ibrahim bin Al-Mahdi, where he saw a slave-girl playing upon the lute;
and, she being one of the fairest of women, his heart inclined to her.
Ibrahim, seeing how it was with him, sent the girl to him, with rich
raiment and precious ornaments. When he saw her, he thought that his
uncle had lain with her; so he was loath to have to do with her, because
of that, and accepting what came with her sent her back to Ibrahim. His
uncle learnt the cause of this from one of Al-Amin’s eunuchs; so he took
a shift of watered silk and worked upon its skirt, in letters of gold,
these two couplets:—

 No! I declare by Him to whom all bow, ✿ Of nothing ‘neath her petticoat
    I trow:
 Nor meddle with her mouth; nor aught did I ✿ But see and hear her, and
    it was enow!

Then he clad her in the shift and, giving her a lute, sent her back
again to his nephew. When she came into Al-Amin’s presence, she kissed
ground before him and tuning the lute, sang thereto these two couplets:—

 Thy breast thou baredst sending back the gift; ✿ Showing unlove for me
    withouten shift:
 An thou bear spite of Past, the Past forgive, ✿ And for the Caliphate
    cast the Past adrift.

When she had made an end of her verse, Al-Amin looked at her and, seeing
what was upon her skirt, could no longer control himself,——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Nineteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Al-Amin
looked at the damsel and saw what was upon her skirt, he could no longer
control himself, but drew near unto her and kissed her and appointed her
a separate lodging in his palace. Moreover, he thanked his uncle for
this and bestowed on him the government of Rayy. And a tale is told of


Footnote 224:

  Sixth Abbaside, A.D. 809–813.


Al-Mutawakkil[225] was once taking medicine, and folk sent him by way of
solace all sorts of presents and rarities and things costly and
precious. Amongst others, Al-Fath bin Khákán[226] sent him a virgin
slave, high-breasted, of the fairest among women of her time, and with
her a vase of crystal, containing ruddy wine, and a goblet of red gold,
whereon were graven in black these couplets:—

 Since our Imam came forth from medicine, ✿ Which made him health and
    heartiness rewin,
 There is no healing draught more sovereign ✿ Than well-boiled wine this
    golden goblet in:
 Then let him break the seal for him secured; ✿ ‘Tis best prescription
    after medicine.[227]

Now when the damsel entered, the physician Yohanná[228] was with the
Caliph, and as he read the couplets, he smiled and said, “By Allah, O
Commander of the Faithful, Fath is better versed than I in the art of
healing: so let not the Prince of True Believers gainsay his
prescription.” Accordingly, the Caliph followed the recipe contained in
the poetry and was made whole by the blessing of Allah and won his every
wish. And among tales they tell is one of


Footnote 225:

  Ala’llah, tenth Abbaside, A. H. 232–47 (847–61), grandson of Al-Rashid
  who succeeded Al-Wásik. He was a fanatic Sunni, much opposed to the
  Shi’ahs and he ordered the Christians to wear round their necks the
  Ghull (collar of wood, iron, or leather), to dress in yellow head-gear
  and girdles, use wooden stirrups and place figures of devils in front
  of their dwelling-houses. He also gave distinct dresses to their women
  and slaves. The Ghull, or collar, was also used for a punishment and
  vermin gathered under it when rivetted round the neck: hence Golius
  calls it “pediculosum columbar.”

Footnote 226:

  Wazir of the above, killed by Al-Muntasir Billah A.H. 247 (= 861).

Footnote 227:

  Easterns during purgation are most careful and deride the want of
  precaution in Europeans. They do not leave the house till all is
  passed off, and avoid baths, wine and women, which they afterwards
  resume with double zest. Here “breaking the seal” is taking the girl’s

Footnote 228:

  Johannes, a Greek favoured by Al-Mutawakkil and other Abbaside

                     EXCELLENCE OF MALE AND FEMALE.

Quoth a certain man of learning, I never saw amongst woman-kind one
wittier, and wiser, better read and by nature more generously bred; and
in manners and morals more perfected than a preacher of the people of
Baghdad, by name Sitt al-Mashá’ikh.[229] It chanced that she came to
Hamah-city in the year of the Flight five hundred and sixty and
one[230]; and there delivered salutary exhortations to the folk from the
professorial chair. Now there used to visit her house a number of
students of divinity and persons of learning and polite letters, who
would discuss with her questions of theology and dispute with her on
controversial points. I went to her one day, with a friend of mine, a
man of years and education; and when we had taken our seats, she set
before us a dish of fruit and seated herself behind a curtain. Now she
had a brother, a handsome youth, who stood behind us, to serve us. And
when we had eaten we fell to disputing upon points of divinity, and I
propounded to her a theological question bearing upon a difference
between the Imams, the Founders of the Four Schools. She proceeded to
speak in answer, whilst I listened; but all the while my friend fell to
looking upon her brother’s face and admiring his beauties without paying
any heed to what she discoursed. Now as she was watching him from behind
the curtain; when she had made an end of her speech, she turned to him
and said, “Methinks thou be of those who give men the preference over
women!” He replied, “Assuredly,” and she asked, “And why so?”; whereto
he answered, “For that Allah hath made the masculine worthier than the
feminine;”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twentieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Shaykh
replied, “For that Allah hath made the masculine worthier than the
feminine; and I like the excelling and mislike the excelled.” She
laughed and presently said, “Wilt thou deal fairly with me in debate, if
I battle the matter with thee?” and he rejoined, “Yes.” Then quoth she,
“What is the evidence of the superiority of the male to the female?”
Quoth he, “It is of two kinds, traditional and reasonable. The
authoritative part deriveth from the Koran and the Traditions of the
Apostle. As for the first we have the very words of Almighty Allah, ‘Men
shall have the pre-eminence above women because of those advantages
wherein Allah hath caused the one of them to excel the other;’[231] and
again, ‘If there be not two men, let there be one man and two
women;’[232] and again, when treating of inheritance, ‘If there be
brothers and sisters let a male have as much as the portion of two
females.’[233] Thus Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) hath in these
places preferred the male over the female and teacheth that a woman is
as the half of a man, for that he is worthier than she As for the
Sunnah-traditions, is it not reported of the Prophet (whom Allah save
and assain!) that he appointed the blood-money for a woman to be half
that of a man? And as for the evidence of reason, the male is the agent
and active and the female the patient and passive.”[234] Rejoined she,
“Thou hast said well, O my lord, but, by Allah, thou hast proved my
contention with thine own lips and hast advanced evidence which telleth
against thee, and not for thee. And thus it is: Allah (extolled and
exalted be He!) preferred the male above the female solely because of
the inherent condition and essential quality of masculinity; and in this
there is no dispute between us. Now this quality of male-hood is common
to the child, the boy, the youth, the adult and the old man; nor is
there any distinction between them in this. If, then, the superior
excellence of male masculant belong to him solely by virtue of manhood,
it behoveth that thy heart incline and thy soul delight in the
greybeard, equally with the boy; seeing that there is no distinction
between them, in point of male-hood. But the difference between thee and
me turneth upon the accident of qualities that are sought as
constituting the pleasure of intercourse and its enjoyment; and thou
hast adduced no proof of the superiority of the youth over the young
girl in this matter of non-essentials.” He made answer, “O reverend
lady, knowest thou not that which is peculiar to the youth of limber
shape and rosy cheeks and pleasant smile and sweetness of speech? Youths
are, in these respects superior to women; and the proof of this is what
they traditionally report of the Prophet (whom Allah bless and
preserve!) that he said, ‘Stay not thy gaze upon the beardless, for in
them is a momentary eye-glance at the black-eyed girls of Paradise.’ Nor
indeed is the superiority of the lad over the lass hidden to any of
mankind, and how well saith Abu Nowas:[235]—

 The least of him is the being free ✿ From monthly courses and pregnancy.

And the saying of another poet:—

 Quoth our Imam, Abu Nowas, who was ✿ For mad debauch and waggishness
 ‘O tribe that loves the cheeks of boys, take fill ✿ Of joys in Paradise
    shall ne’er be found!’

So if any one enlarge in praise of a slave-girl and wish to enhance her
value by the mention of her beauties, he likeneth her to a youth,”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twenty-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Shaykh
continued, “So if any one enlarge in praise of a slave-girl and wish to
enhance her value by the mention of her beauties, he likeneth her to a
youth, because of the illustrious qualities that belong to the male,
even as saith the poet:—

 Boy-like of backside, in the deed of kind, ✿ She sways, as sways the
    wand-like boughs a-wind.

An youths, then, were not better and fairer than girls, why should these
be likened to them? And know also (Almighty Allah preserve thee!) that a
youth is easy to be led, adapting himself to every rede, pleasant of
converse and manners, inclining to assent rather than dissent,
especially when his side-face is newly down’d and his upper lip is first
embrowned, and the purple lights of youth on his cheeks abound, so that
he is like the full moon sound; and how goodly is the saying of Abu

 The slanderers said There’s hair upon his cheeks; ✿ Quoth I, Exceed not;
    that’s no blemish there.
 When he could bear that haling of his hips ✿ And pearl-beads shaded by
 And Rose swore solemn, holiest oath that is, ✿ From that fair cheek she
    nevermore would fare,
 I spoke with eyelids without need of speech, ✿ And they who answered me
    his eyebrows were.
 He’s even fairer than thou knewest him, ✿ And cheek-down guards from all
    would overdare.

 Brighter and sweeter now are grown his charms, ✿ Since down robes lip
    and cheek before were bare.
 And those who blame me for my love of him, ✿ When him they mention say
    of him, ‘Thy Fair’!

And quoth Al-Hariri[238] and quoth excellently well:—

 My censors say, What means this pine for him? ✿ Seest not the flowing
    hair on cheeks a-flowing?
 I say, By Allah, an ye deem I dote, ✿ Look at the truth in those fine
    eyes a-showing!
 But for the down that veils his cheek and chin, ✿ His brow had dazed all
    eyes no sight allowing:
 And whoso sojourns in a growthless land, ✿ How shall he move from land
    fair growths a-growing?

And quoth another:—

 My blamers say of me, ‘He is consoled,’ And lie! ✿ No consolation comes
    to those who pine and sigh.
 I had no solace when Rose bloomed alone on cheek, ✿ Now Basil blooms
    thereon and now consoled am I.

And again:—

 Slim-waisted one, whose looks with down of cheek ✿ In slaughtering
    mankind each other hurtle:
 With the Narcissus-blade he sheddeth blood, ✿ The baldrick of whose
    sheath is freshest myrtle.[239]

And again:—

 Not with his must I’m drunk, but verily ✿ Those curls turn manly heads
    like newest wine[240]:
 Each of his beauties envies each, and all ✿ Would be the silky down on
    side-face li’en.

Such are the excellencies of the youth which women do not own, and they
more than suffice to give those the preference over these.” She replied,
“Allah give thee health! verily, thou hast imposed the debate upon
thyself; and thou hast spoken and hast not stinted and hast brought
proofs to support every assertion. But, ‘Now is the truth become
manifest;’[241] so swerve thou not from the path thereof; and, if thou
be not content with a summary of evidence, I will set it before thee in
fullest detail. Allah upon thee, where is the youth beside the girl and
who shall compare kid and wild cow? The girl is soft of speech, fair of
form, like a branchlet of basil, with teeth like chamomile-petals and
hair like halters wherefrom to hang hearts. Her cheeks are like
blood-red anemones and her face like a pippin: she hath lips like wine
and breasts like pomegranates twain and a shape supple as a rattan-cane.
Her body is well-formed and with sloping shoulders dight; she hath a
nose like the edge of a sword shining bright and a forehead brilliant
white and eyebrows which unite and eyes stained by Nature’s hand black
as night. If she speak, fresh young pearls are scattered from her mouth
forthright and all hearts are ravished by the daintiness of her sprite;
when she smileth thou wouldst ween the moon shone out her lips between
and when she eyes thee, sword-blades flash from the babes of her eyes.
In her all beauties to conclusion come, and she is the centre of
attraction to traveller and stay-at-home. She hath two lips of cramoisy,
than cream smoother and of taste than honey sweeter,”——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twenty-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the preacher-woman
thus pursued her theme in the praise of fair maids, “She hath two lips
of cramoisy, than cream smoother and than honey sweeter;” adding, “And
she hath a bosom, as it were a way two hills between which are a pair of
breasts like globes of ivory sheen; likewise, a stomach right smooth,
flanks soft as the palm-spathe and creased with folds and dimples which
overlap one another, and liberal thighs, which like columns of pearl
arise, and back parts which billow and beat together like seas of glass
or mountains of glance, and two feet and hands of gracious mould like
unto ingots of virgin gold. So, O miserable! where are mortal men beside
the Jinn? Knowest thou not that puissant princes and potent Kings before
women ever humbly bend and on them for delight depend? Verily, they may
say;—We rule over necks and rob hearts. These women! how many a rich man
have they not paupered, how many a powerful man have they not prostrated
and how many a superior man have they not enslaved! Indeed, they seduce
the sage and send the saint to shame and bring the wealthy to want and
plunge the fortune-favoured into penury. Yet for all this, the wise but
redouble in affection of them and honour; nor do they count this
oppression or dishonour. How many a man for them hath offended his Maker
and called down on himself the wrath of his father and mother! And all
this because of the conquest of their love over hearts. Knowest thou
not, O wretched one, that for them are built pavilions, and slave-girls
are for sale;[242] that for them tear-floods rail and for them are
collected jewels of price and ambergris and musk odoriferous; and armies
are arrayed and pleasaunces made and wealth heaped up and smitten off is
many a head?” And indeed he spoke sooth in the words, ‘Whoso saith the
world meaneth woman.’ Now as for thy citation from the Holy Traditions,
it is an argument against thee and not for thee; in that the Prophet
(whom Allah bless and preserve!) compareth the beardless with the
black-eyed girls of Paradise. Now, doubtless, the subject of comparison
is worthier than the object therewith compared; so, unless women be the
worthier and the goodlier, wherefore should other than they be likened
to them? As for thy saying that girls are likened to boys, the case is
not so, but the contrary: boys are likened to girls; for folk say,
Yonder boy is like a girl. As for what proof thou quotest from the
poets, the verses were the product of a complexion unnatural in this
respect; and as for the habitual sodomites and catamites, offenders
against religion, Almighty Allah hath condemned them in His Holy
Book,[243] wherein He denounceth their filthy practices, saying, Do ye
approach unto the males among mankind[244] and leave your wives which
your Lord hath created for you? Surely ye are a people who transgress!
These it is that liken girls to boys, of their exceeding profligacy and
ungraciousness and inclination to follow the fiend and own lusts, so
that they say, She is apt for two tricks;[245] and these are all
wanderers from the way of right and the righteous. Quoth their chief Abu

 Slim-waist and boyish wits delight ✿ Wencher, as well as Sodomite,[246]

As for what thou sayest of a youth’s first hair on cheek and lips and
how they add to his beauty and loveliness, by Allah, thou strayest from
the straight path of sooth and sayest that which is other than the
truth; for whiskers change the charms of the comely into ugliness;
(quoting these couplets):—

 That sprouting hair upon his face took wreak ✿ For lovers’ vengeance,
    all did vainly seek.
 I see not on his face a sign fuli- ✿ genous, except his curls are hue of
 If so his paper[247] mostly be begrimed ✿ Where deemest thou the reed
    shall draw a streak?
 If any raise him other fairs above, ✿ This only proves the judge of wits
    is weak.

And when she ended her verse she resumed, “Laud be to Allah
Almighty,”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twenty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
preacher-woman ended her verse she resumed, addressing the man, “Laud to
Allah Almighty! how can it be hid from thee that the perfect pleasure is
in women and that abiding blessings are not to be found but with them,
seeing that Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) hath promised His
prophets and saints black-eyed damsels in Paradise and hath appointed
these for a recompense of their godly works. And had the Almighty known
that the joy supreme was in the possession of other than women, He had
rewarded them therewith and promised it to them. And quoth he (whom
Allah bless and preserve!), The things I hold dearest of the things of
your world are three: women and perfume and the solace of my eyes in
prayer. Verily Allah hath appointed boys to serve his prophets and
saints in Paradise, because Paradise is the abode of joy and delight,
which could not be complete without the service of youths; but, as to
the use of them for aught but service, it is Hell’s putridity[248] and
corruption and turpitude. How well saith the poet:”—

 Men’s turning unto bums of boys is bumptious; ✿ Whoso love noble women
    show their own noblesse.
 How many goodly wights have slept the night, enjoying ✿ Buttocks of
    boys, and woke at morn in foulest mess;
 Their garments stained by safflower, which is yellow merde ✿ Their shame
    proclaiming, showing colour of distress.
 Who can deny the charge, when so bewrayed are they ✿ That e’en by
    daylight shows the dung upon their dress?
 What contrast wi’ the man, who slept a gladsome night ✿ By Houri-maid
    for glance a mere enchantress,
 He rises off her borrowing wholesome bonny scent; ✿ That fills the house
    with whiffs of perfumed goodliness.
 No boy deserved place by side of her to hold; ✿ Canst even aloes-wood
    with what fills pool of cess![249]

Then said she, “O folk ye have made me to break the bounds of modesty
and the circle of free-born women and indulge in idle talk of chambering
and wantonness, which beseemeth not people of learning. But the breasts
of free-borns are the sepulchres of secrets, and such conversations are
in confidence. Moreover, actions are according to intentions,[250] and I
crave pardon of Allah for myself and you and all Moslems, seeing that He
is the Pardoner and the Compassionate.” Then she held her peace and
thereafter would answer us of naught; so we went our way, rejoicing in
that we had profited by her contention and yet sorrowing to part from
her. And among the tales they tell is one of


Footnote 229:

  Lady of Shaykhs, elders in the faith and men of learning.

Footnote 230:

  = A.D. 1166.

Footnote 231:

  Koran iv. 38. I have before noted what the advantages are.

Footnote 232:

  Koran ii. 282, “of those whom ye shall choose for witnesses.”

Footnote 233:

  Koran iv. 175, “Whereas if there be two sisters, they inherit only
  two-thirds between them.”

Footnote 234:

  The secondary meaning is “Fá’il” = the active sodomite and Mafa’úl =
  the passive, a catamite: the former is not an insulting word, the
  latter is a most injurious expression. “Novimus et qui _te_!”

Footnote 235:

  It is an unpleasant fact that almost all the poetry of Háfiz is
  addressed to youths, as we see by the occasional introduction of
  Arabic (_e.g._, Afáka’lláh). Persian has no genders properly so
  called, hence the effect is less striking. Sa’di, the “Persian
  Moralist” begins one of the tales, “A certain learned man fell in love
  with a beautiful _son_ of a blacksmith,” which Gladwin, translating
  for the general, necessarily changed to “daughter.”

Footnote 236:

  The famous author of the Anthology called Al-Hamásah.

Footnote 237:

  _i.e._, teeth under the young mustachio.

Footnote 238:

  The “Silk-man” and the celebrated author of the Makámát, assemblies or
  seances, translated (or attempted) into all the languages of Europe.
  We have two in English, the first by Theodore Preston, M.A. (London,
  Madden, 1850); but it contains only twenty of the fifty pieces. The
  second by the late Mr. Chenery (before alluded to) ends with the
  twenty-sixth assembly: one volume in fact, the other never having been
  finished. English readers, therefore, are driven to the grand edition
  of the Makámát in folio by Baron Silvestre de Sacy.

Footnote 239:

  The sword of the eye has a Hamáil (baldrick worn over right shoulder,
  Pilgrimage i. 352) to support the “Ghimd” (vulg. Ghamad) or scabbard
  (of wood or leather): and this baldrick is the young whisker.

Footnote 240:

  The conceit of “Suláfat” (ptisane, grape juice allowed to drain on the
  slabs) and “Sawálif” (tresses, locks) has been explained. The newest
  wine is the most inebriating, a fact not much known in England, but
  familiar to the drinker of “Vino novo.”

Footnote 241:

  Koran xii. 51, this said by the nobleman’s (Potiphar’s) wife who adds,
  “I selected him to lie with me; and he (Joseph) is one of those who
  speak truth.”

Footnote 242:

  Here we have a specimen of the strained Saj’a or balanced prose:
  slave-girls (jawárí) are massed with flowing tears (dam’u jári) on
  account of the Káfiyah or rhyme.

Footnote 243:

  The detected sodomite is punished with death according to Moslem law,
  but again comes the difficulty of proof. At Shiraz I have heard of a
  pious Moslem publicly executing his son.

Footnote 244:

  Koran xxvi. 165 _et seq._ The Lord speaks to the “people of Lot”
  (Sodomites). Mr. Payne renders “Min al-álamína,” “from the four
  corners of the world.”

Footnote 245:

  Meaning before and behind, a Moslemah “Bet Balmanno.”

Footnote 246:

  Arab. “Lúti,” (plur. Lawáti), much used in Persian as a buffoon, a
  debauchee, a rascal. The orig. sig. is “One of (the people of) Lot.”
  The old English was Ingle or Yngle (a bardachio, a catamite, a boy
  kept for sodomy), which Minsheu says is, “Vox hispanica et significat
  Latinè Inguen” (the groin). Our vulgar modern word like the Italian
  bugiardo is pop. derived from Fr. Bougre, alias Bulgarus, a Bulgarian,
  a heretic: hence Boulgrin (Rabelais i. chapt. ii.) is popularly
  applied to the Albigeois (Albigenses, whose persecution began shortly
  after A.D. 1200) and the Lutherans. I cannot but think that “bougre”
  took its especial modern signification after the French became
  acquainted with the Brazil, where the Huguenots (in A.D. 1555) were
  founding a Nouvelle France, alias Equinoctiale, alias Antarctique, and
  whence the savages were carried as curiosities to Paris. Their generic
  name was “Bugre” (properly a tribe in Southern Brazil, but applied to
  all the redskins) and they were all born Sodomites. More of this in
  the terminal Essay.

Footnote 247:

  His paper is the whiteness of his skin. I have quoted the Persian
  saying of a young beard: “his cheeks don mourning for his beauty’s

Footnote 248:

  Arab. “Khabál,” lit. the pus which flows from the bodies of the

Footnote 249:

  Most characteristic of Egypt is all this scene. Her reverence, it is
  true, sits behind a curtain; but her virtue uses language which would
  shame the lowest European prostitute; and which is filthy almost as
  Dean Swift’s.

Footnote 250:

  Arab. “Niyat:” the Moslem’s idea of intentions quite runs with the
  Christian’s. There must be a “Niyat” or purpose of prayer or the
  devotion is valueless. Lane tells a pleasant tale of a thief in the
  Mosque, saying “I purpose (before prayer) to carry off this nice pair
  of new shoes!”


(Quoth Abu Suwayd) I and a company of my friends, entered a garden one
day to buy somewhat of fruit; and we saw in a corner an old woman, who
was bright of face, but her head-hair was white, and she was combing it
with an ivory comb. We stopped before her, yet she paid no heed to us
neither veiled her face: so I said, to her, “O old woman,[251] wert thou
to dye thy hair black, thou wouldst be handsomer than a girl: what
hindereth thee from this?” She raised her head towards me——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twenty-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Abu Suwayd
continued:—When I spake these words to the ancient dame she raised her
head towards me and, opening wide her eyes, recited these two couplets:—

 I dyed what years have dyed, but this my staining ✿ Lasts not, while
    that of days is aye remaining:
 Days when beclad in gear of youth I fared, ✿ Raked fore and aft by men
    with joy unfeigning.

I cried:—By Allah, favoured art thou for an old woman! How sincere art
thou in thine after-pine for forbidden pleasures and how false is thy
pretence of repentance from frowardness! And another tale is that of


Footnote 251:

  Arab. “Ya ‘l-Ajúz” (in Cairo “Agooz” pronounce “Ago-o-oz”): the
  address is now insulting and would elicit “The old woman in thine eye”
  (with fingers extended). In Egypt the polite address is “O lady
  (Sitt), O pilgrimess, O bride, and O daughter” (although she be the
  wrong side of fifty). In Arabia you may say “O woman (Imraah)” but in
  Egypt the reply would be “The woman shall see Allah cut out thy
  heart!” So in Southern Italy you address “bella fé” (fair one) and
  cause a quarrel by “vecchiarella.”


Once on a time was displayed for sale to Ali bin Mohammed bin Abdallah
bin Táhir[252] a slave-girl called Muunis who was superior to her
fellows in beauty and breeding, and to boot an accomplished poetess; and
he asked her of her name. Replied she, “Allah advance the Emir, my name
is Muunis.”[253] Now he knew this before; so he bowed his head awhile,
then raising his eyes to her, recited this verse:—

 What sayest of one by a sickness caught ✿ For the love of thy love till
    he waxed distraught?

Answered she, “Allah exalt the Emir!” and recited this verse in reply:—

 If we saw a lover who pains as he ought, ✿ Wi’ love we would grant him
    all favours he sought.

She pleased him: so he bought her for seventy thousand dirhams and begat
on her Obayd’ Allah bin Mohammed, afterwards minister of Police.[254]
And we are told by Abu al-Ayná[255] a tale of


Footnote 252:

  Governor of Egypt, Khorasan, etc. under Al-Maamun.

Footnote 253:

  _i.e._ a companion, a solacer: it is also a man’s name (vol. i. xxiv.)

Footnote 254:

  At Baghdad; evidently written by a Baghdad or Mosul man.

Footnote 255:

  A blind traditionist of Bassorah (ninth century).


(Quoth Abu al-Ayná.) There were in our street two women, one of whom had
for lover a man and the other a beardless youth, and they foregathered
one night on the terrace-roof of a house adjoining mine, knowing not
that I was near. Quoth the boy’s lover to the other, “O my sister, how
canst thou bear with patience the harshness of thy lover’s beard as it
falleth on thy breast, when he busseth thee and his mustachios rub thy
cheek and lips?” Replied the other, “Silly that thou art, what decketh
the tree save its leaves and the cucumber but its warts?[256] Didst ever
see in the world aught uglier than a scald-head bald of his beard?
Knowest thou not that the beard is to men as the sidelocks to women; and
what is the difference between chin and cheek?[257] Knowest thou not
that Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) hath created an angel in
Heaven, who saith:—Glory be to Him who ornamenteth men with beards and
women with long hair? So, were not the beard even as the tresses in
comeliness, it had not been coupled with them, O silly! How shall I
spread-eagle myself under a boy, who will emit long before I can go off
and forestall me in limpness of penis and clitoris; and leave a man who,
when he taketh breath clippeth close and when he entereth goeth
leisurely, and when he hath done, repeateth, and when he pusheth poketh
hard, and as often as he withdraweth, returneth?” The boy’s leman was
edified by her speech and said, “I forswear my lover by the lord of the
Ka’abah!” And amongst tales is one of


Footnote 256:

  Arab. “Zaghab” = the chick’s down; the warts on the cucumber which
  sometimes develop into projections.

Footnote 257:

  The Persian saying is, A kiss without moustachio is bread without


There lived once, in the city of Cairo, a merchant who had great store
of monies and bullion, gems and jewels, and lands and houses beyond
count, and his name was Hasan the Jeweller, the Baghdad man. Furthermore
Allah had blessed him with a son of perfect beauty and brilliancy;
rosy-cheeked, fair of face and well-figured, whom he named Ali of Cairo
and had taught the Koran and science and elocution and the other
branches of polite education, till he became proficient in all manner of
knowledge. He was under his father’s hand in trade but, after a while,
Hasan fell sick and his sickness grew upon him, till he made sure of
death; so he called his son to him,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twenty-fifth Night,

She said, it hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Jeweller,
the Baghdadi, fell sick and made sure of death, he called to him his
son, named Ali of Cairo, and said, “O my son, verily this world passeth
away; but the next world endureth for aye. Every soul shall taste of
death;[258] and now, O my son, my decease is at hand and I desire to
charge thee with a charge, which if thou observe, thou shalt abide in
safety and prosperity, till thou meet Almighty Allah; but if thou follow
it not, there shall befal thee much weariness and thou wilt repent of
having transgressed mine injunctions.” Replied Ali, “O my father, how
shall I do other than hearken to thy words and act according to thy
charge, seeing that I am bounden by the law of the Faith to obey thee
and give ear to thy command?” Rejoined his father, “O my son, I leave
thee lands and houses and goods and wealth past count; so that wert thou
each day to spend thereof five hundred dinars, thou wouldst miss naught
of it. But, O my son, look that thou live in the fear of Allah and
follow His Chosen One, Mustafa, (whom may He bless and preserve!) in
whatso he is reported to have bidden and forbidden in his traditional
law.[259] Be thou constant in alms-deeds and the practice of beneficence
and in consorting with men of worth and piety and learning; and look
that thou have a care for the poor and needy and shun avarice and
meanness and the conversation of the wicked or those of suspicious
character. Look thou kindly upon thy servants and family, and also upon
thy wife, for she is of the daughters of the great and is big with child
by thee; haply Allah will vouchsafe thee virtuous issue by her.” And he
ceased not to exhort him thus, weeping and saying, “O my son, I beseech
Allah the Bountiful, the Lord of the glorious Empyrean[260] to deliver
thee from all straits that may encompass thee and grant thee His ready
relief!” Thereupon his son wept with sore weeping and said, “O my
father, I am melted by thy words, for these are as the words of one that
saith farewell.” Replied the merchant, “Yes, O my son, I am aware of my
condition: forget thou not my charge.” Then he fell to repeating the two
professions of the Faith and to reciting verses of the Koran, until the
appointed hour arrived, when he said, “Draw near unto me, O my son.” So
Ali drew near and he kissed him; then he sighed and his soul departed
his body and he went to the mercy of Almighty Allah.[261] Therewith
great grief fell upon Ali; the clamour of keening arose in his house and
his father’s friends flocked to him. Then he betook himself to preparing
the body for burial and made him a splendid funeral. They bore his bier
to the place of prayer and prayed over him, then to the cemetery, where
they buried him and recited over him what suited of the sublime Koran;
after which they returned to the house and condoled with the dead man’s
son and wended each his own way. Moreover, Ali prayed the Friday prayer
for his father and had perlections of the Koran every day for the normal
forty, during which time he abode in the house and went not forth, save
to the place of prayer; and every Friday he visited his father’s tomb.
So he ceased not from his praying and reciting for some time, until his
fellows of the sons of the merchants came in to him one day and saluting
him, said, “How long this thy mourning and neglecting thy business and
the company of thy friends? Verily, this is a fashion which will bring
thee weariness, and thy body will suffer for it exceedingly.” Now when
they came in to him, Iblis the Accursed was with them, prompting them;
and they went on to recommend him to accompany them to the bazar, whilst
Iblis tempted him to consent to them, till he yielded,——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twenty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the sons of
the merchants went in to Ali the Cairene, son of Hasan the Jeweller,
they recommended him to accompany them to the bazar, till he yielded,
that the will of Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) might be fulfilled;
and he left the house of mourning with them. Presently they said, “Mount
thy she-mule and ride with us to such a garden, that we may solace us
there and that thy grief and despondency may depart from thee.” So he
mounted and taking his slave, went with them to the garden in question;
and when they entered one of them went and making ready the
morning-meal, brought it to them there. So they ate and were merry and
sat in talk, till the end of the day, when they mounted and returned
each to his own lodging, where they passed the night. As soon as the
morrow dawned, they again visited Ali and said, “Come with us.” Asked
he, “Whither?”; and they answered, “To such a garden; for it is finer
than the first and more pleasurable.” So he went with them to the
garden, and one of them, going away, made ready the morning-meal and
brought it to them, together with strong heady wine; and after eating
they brought out the wine, when quoth Ali, “What is this?” and quoth
they, “This is what dispelleth sadness and brighteneth gladness.” And
they ceased not to commend it to him, till they prevailed upon him and
he drank with them. Then they sat, drinking and talking, till the end of
the day, when each returned home. But as for Ali, the Cairene, he was
giddy with wine and in this plight went in to his wife, who said to him,
“What aileth thee that thou art so changed?” He said, “We were making
merry to-day, when one of my companions brought us liquor; so my friends
drank and I with them, and this giddiness came upon me.” And she
replied, “O my lord, say me, hast thou forgotten thy father’s injunction
and done that from which he forbade thee, in consorting with doubtful
folk?” Answered he, “These be of the sons of the merchants; they are no
suspicious folk, only lovers of mirth and good cheer.” And he continued
to lead this life with his friends, day after day, going from place to
place and feasting with them and drinking, till they said to him, “Our
turns are ended, and now it is thy turn.” “Well come, and welcome and
fair cheer!” cried he; so on the morrow, he made ready all that the case
called for of meat and drink, two-fold what they had provided, and
taking cooks and tent-pitchers and coffee-makers,[262] repaired with the
others to Al-Rauzah[263] and the Nilometer, where they abode a whole
month, eating and drinking and hearing music and making merry. At the
end of the month, Ali found that he had spent a great sum of money; but
Iblis the Accursed deluded him and said to him, “Though thou shouldst
spend every day a like sum yet wouldst thou not miss aught of it.” So he
took no account of money expenses and continued this way of life for
three years, whilst his wife remonstrated with him and reminded him of
his father’s charge; but he hearkened not to her words, till he had
spent all the ready monies he had, when he fell to selling his jewels
and spending their price, until they also were all gone. Then he sold
his houses, fields, farms and gardens, one after other, till they
likewise were all gone and he had nothing left but the tenement wherein
he lived. So he tore out the marble and wood-work and sold it and spent
of its price, till he had made an end of all this also, when he took
thought with himself and, finding that he had nothing left to expend,
sold the house itself and spent the purchase-money. After that, the man
who had bought the house came to him and said “Seek out for thyself a
lodging, as I have need of my house.” So he bethought himself and,
finding that he had no want of a house, except for his wife, who had
borne him a son and daughter (he had not a servant left), he hired a
large room in one of the mean courts[264] and there took up his abode,
after having lived in honour and luxury, with many eunuchs and much
wealth; and he soon came to want one day’s bread. Quoth his wife, “Of
this I warned thee and exhorted thee to obey thy father’s charge, and
thou wouldst not hearken to me; but there is no Majesty and there is no
Might, save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great! Whence shall the little
ones eat? Arise then, go round to thy friends, the sons of the
merchants: belike they will give thee somewhat on which we may live this
day.” So he arose and went to his friends one by one; but they all hid
their faces from him and gave him injurious words revolting to hear, but
naught else; and he returned to his wife and said to her, “They have
given me nothing.” Thereupon she went forth to beg of her neighbours the
wherewithal to keep themselves alive——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twenty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the wife of Ali
the Cairene, seeing her husband return empty-handed, went forth to beg
of her neighbours the wherewithal to keep themselves alive and repaired
to a woman, whom she had known in former days. When she came in to her
and she saw her case, she rose and receiving her kindly, wept and said,
“What hath befallen you?” So she told her all that her husband had done,
and the other replied, “Well come and welcome and fair cheer!; whatever
thou needest, seek it of me, without price.” Quoth she, “Allah requite
thee abundantly!”[265] Then her friend gave her as much provision as
would suffice herself and her family a whole month, and she took it and
returned to her lodging. When her husband saw her, he wept and asked,
“Whence hadst thou that?”; and she answered, “I got it of such a woman;
for, when I told her what had befallen us, she failed me not in aught,
but said, Seek of me all thou needest.” Whereupon her husband rejoined,
“Since thou hast this much I will betake myself to a place I have in my
mind; peradventure Allah Almighty will bring us relief.”[266] With these
words he took leave of her and kissed his children and went out, not
knowing whither he should go, and he continued walking on till he came
to Bulák, where he saw a ship about to sail for Damietta.[267] Here he
met a man, between whom and his father there had been friendship, and he
saluted him and said to him, “Whither now?” Replied Ali, “To Damietta: I
have friends there, whom I would enquire after and visit them and then
return.” The man took him home and treated him honourably; then,
furnishing him with vivers for the voyage and giving him some gold
pieces, embarked him on board the vessel bound for Damietta. When they
reached it, Ali landed, not knowing whither to go; but as he was walking
along, a merchant saw him and had pity on him, and carried him to his
house. Here he abode awhile, after which he said in himself, “How long
this sojourning in other folk’s homes?” Then he left the merchant’s
place and walked to the wharf where, after enquiry, he found a ship
ready to sail for Syria. His hospitable host provided him with provision
and embarked him in the ship; and it set sail and Ali reached in due
season the Syrian shores where he disembarked and journeyed till he
entered Damascus. As he walked about the great thoroughfare behold, a
kindly man saw him and took him to his house, where he tarried for a
time till, one day, going abroad, he saw a caravan about to start for
Baghdad and bethought himself to journey thither with it. Thereupon he
returned to his host and taking leave of him, set out with the Cafilah.
Now Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) inclined to him the heart of one
of the merchants, so that he took him with him, and Ali ate and drank
with him, till they came within one day’s journey of Baghdad. Here,
however, a company of highwaymen fell upon the caravan and took all they
had and but few of the merchants escaped. These made each for a separate
place of refuge; but as for Ali the Cairene he fared for Baghdad, where
he arrived at sundown, as the gatekeepers were about to shut the gates,
and said to them, “Let me in with you.” They admitted him and asked him,
“Whence come, and whither wending?” and he answered, “I am a man from
Cairo-city and have with me mules laden with merchandise and slaves and
servants. I forewent them, to look me out a place wherein to deposit my
goods: but, as I rode along on my she-mule, there fell upon me a company
of banditti, who took my mule and gear; nor did I escape from them but
at my last gasp.” The gate-guard entreated him honourably and bade him
be of good cheer, saying, “Abide with us this night, and in the morning
we will look thee out a place befitting thee.” Then he sought in his
breast-pocket and, finding a dinar of those given to him by the merchant
at Bulak, handed it to one of the gatekeepers, saying, “Take this and
change it and bring us something to eat.” The man took it and went to
the market, where he changed it, and brought Ali bread and cooked meat:
so he ate, he and the gate-guards, and he lay the night with them. Now
on the morrow, one of the warders carried him to a certain of the
merchants of Baghdad, to whom he told the same story, and he believed
him, deeming that he was a merchant and had with him loads of
merchandise. Then he took him up into his shop and entreated him with
honour; moreover, he sent to his house for a splendid suit of his own
apparel for him and carried him to the Hammam. So, quoth Ali of Cairo:—I
went with him to the bath, and when we came out, he took me and brought
me to his house, where he set the morning-meal before us, and we ate and
made merry. Then said he to one of his black slaves, “Ho Mas’úd, take
this thy lord: show him the two houses standing in such a place, and
whichever pleaseth him, give him the key of it and come back.” So I went
with the slave, till we came to a street-road where stood three houses
side by side, newly built and yet shut up. He opened the first and I
looked at it; and we did the same to the second; after which he said to
me “Of which shall I give thee the key?” “To whom doth the big house
belong?” “To us!” “Open it, that I may view it.” “Thou hast no business
there.” “Wherefore?” “Because it is haunted, and none nighteth there but
in the morning he is a dead man; nor do we use to open the door, when
removing the corpse, but mount the terrace-roof of one of the other two
houses and take it up thence. For this reason my master hath abandoned
the house and saith:—I will never again give it to any one.” “Open it,”
I cried, “that I may view it;” and I said in my mind, “This is what I
seek; I will pass the night there and in the morning be a dead man and
be at peace from this my case.” So he opened it and I entered and found
it a splendid house, without its like; and I said to the slave, “I will
have none other than this house; give me its key.” But he rejoined, “I
will not give thee this key till I consult my master,”——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twenty-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the negro
(continued Ali of Cairo) rejoined, “I will not give thee its key till I
consult my master,” and going to him, reported, “The Egyptian trader
saith:—I will lodge in none but the big house.” Now when the merchant
heard this, he rose and coming to Ali, spake thus to him, “O my lord,
thou hast no need of this house.” But he answered, “I will lodge in none
other than this; for I care naught for this silly saying.” Quoth the
other, “Write me an acknowledgment that, if aught happen to thee, I am
not responsible.” Quoth Ali, “So be it;” whereupon the merchant fetched
an assessor from the Kazi’s court and, taking the prescribed
acknowledgment, delivered to him the key wherewith he entered the house.
The merchant sent him bedding by a blackamoor who spread it for him on
the built bench behind the door[268] and walked away. Presently Ali went
about and, seeing in the inner court a well with a bucket, let this down
and drew water, wherewith he made the lesser ablution and prayed the
obligatory prayers. Then he sat awhile, till the slave brought him the
evening meal from his master’s house, together with a lamp, a candle and
candlestick, a basin and ewer and a gugglet[269]; after which he left
him and returned home. Ali lighted the candle, supped at his ease and
prayed the night-prayer; and presently he said to himself, “Come, take
the bedding and go upstairs and sleep there; ‘twill be better than
here.” So he took the bed and carried it upstairs, where he found a
splendid saloon, with gilded ceiling and floor and walls cased with
coloured marbles. He spread his bed there and sitting down, began to
recite somewhat of the Sublime Koran, when (ere he was ware) he heard
one calling to him and asking, “O Ali, O son of Hasan, say me, shall I
send thee down the gold?” And he answered, “Where be the gold thou hast
to send?” But hardly had he spoken, when gold pieces began to rain down
on him, like stones from a catapult, nor ceased till the saloon was
full. Then, after the golden shower, said the Voice, “Set me free, that
I may go my way; for I have made an end of my service and have delivered
unto thee that which was entrusted to me for thee.” Quoth Ali, “I adjure
thee, by Allah the Almighty, to tell me the cause of this gold-rain.”
Replied the Voice, “This is a treasure that was talisman’d to thee of
old time, and to every one who entered the house, we used to come and
say:—O Ali, O son of Hasan, shall we send thee down the gold? Whereat he
would be affrighted and cry out, and we would come down to him and break
his neck and go away. But, when thou camest and we accosted thee by thy
name and that of thy father, saying, Shall we send thee down the gold?
and thou madest answer to us, And where be the gold? we knew thee for
the owner of it and sent it down. Moreover, there is yet another hoard
for thee in the land of Al-Yaman and thou wouldst do well to journey
thither and fetch it. And now I would fain have thee set me free, that I
may go my way.” Said Ali, “By Allah, I will not set thee free, till thou
bring me hither the treasure from the land of Al-Yaman!” Said the Voice,
“An I bring it to thee, wilt thou release me and eke the servant of the
other hoard?” “Yes,” replied Ali, and the Voice cried, “Swear to me.” So
he swore to him, and he was about to go away, when Ali said to him, “I
have one other need to ask of thee;” and he, “What is that?” Quoth Ali,
“I have a wife and children at Cairo in such a place; thou needs must
fetch them to me, at their ease and without their unease.” Quoth he, “I
will bring them to thee in a mule-litter[270] and much state, with a
train of eunuchs and servants, together with the treasure from Al-Yaman,
Inshallah!”[271] Then he took of him leave of absence for three days,
when all this should be with him, and vanished. As soon as it was
morning Ali went round about the saloon, seeking a place wherein to
store the gold, and saw on the edge of the dais a marble slab with a
turning-pin; so he turned the pin and the slab sank and showed a door
which he opened and entering, found a great closet, full of bags of
coarse stuff carefully sewn. So he began taking out the bags and fell to
filling them with gold and storing them in the closet, till he had
transported thither all the hoarded gold, whereupon he shut the door and
turning the pin, the slab returned to its place. Then he went down and
seated himself on the bench behind the door; and presently there came a
knock; so he opened and found the merchant’s slave who, seeing him
comfortably sitting, returned in haste to his master——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Twenty-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
house-owner’s black slave returned and knocked at the door, Ali the
Cairene, son of the merchant Hasan, opened it to him and the negro,
seeing him comfortably sitting, returned in haste to his master with the
good tidings, saying, “O my Lord, the merchant, who is lodged in the
house inhabited by the Jinn,[272] is alive and well and sitteth on the
bench behind the door.” Then the merchant rose joyfully and went to the
house, taking breakfast with him; and, when he saw Ali, he embraced him
and kissed him between the eyes, asking, “How hath Allah dealt with
thee?”; and Ali answered, “Right well, I slept upstairs in the marble
saloon.” Quoth the merchant, “Did aught come to thee or didst thou see
any thing?” and quoth Ali, “No, I recited some little of the Sublime
Koran and slept till morning, when I arose and, after making the minor
ablution and praying, seated myself on the bench behind the door.”
“Praised be Allah for safety!” exclaimed the merchant, then left him and
presently sent him black slaves and white Mamelukes and handmaidens with
household gear. They swept the house from top to bottom and furnished it
with magnificent furniture; after which three white slaves and three
blacks and four slave-girls remained with him, to serve him, while the
rest returned to their master’s house. Now when the merchants heard of
him, they sent him presents of all manner things of price, even to food
and drink and clothes, and took him with them to the market, asking,
“When will thy baggage arrive?” And he answered, “After three days it
will surely come.” When the term had elapsed, the servant of the first
hoard, the golden rain, came to him and said, “Go forth and meet the
treasure I have brought thee from Al-Yaman together with thy Harim; for
I bring part of the wealth in the semblance of costly merchandise; but
the eunuchs and Mamelukes and the mules and horses and camels are all of
the Jánn.” Now the Jinni, when he betook himself to Cairo, found Ali’s
wife and children in sore misery, naked and hungry; so he carried them
out of the city in a travelling-litter and clad them in sumptuous
raiment of the stuffs which were in the treasure of Al-Yaman. So when
Ali heard this, he arose and repairing to the merchants, said to them,
“Rise and go forth with us from the city, to meet the caravan bringing
my merchandise, and honour us with the presence of your Harims, to meet
my Harim.” “Hearkening and obedience,” answered they and, sending for
their Harims, went forth all together and took seat in one of the
city-gardens; and as they sat talking, behold, a dust-cloud arose out of
the heart of the desert, and they flocked forth to see what it was.
Presently it lifted and discovered mules and muleteers, tent-pitchers
and linkmen, who came on, singing and dancing, till they reached the
garden, when the chief of the muleteers walked up to Ali and kissing his
hand, said to him, “O my master, we have been long on the way, for we
purposed entering yesterday; but we were in fear of the bandits, so
abode in our station four days, till Almighty Allah rid us of them.”
Thereupon the merchants mounted their mules and rode forward with the
caravan, the Harims waiting behind, till Ali’s wife and children mounted
with them; and they all entered in splendid train. The merchants
marvelled at the number of mules laden with chests, whilst the women of
the merchants wondered at the richness of the apparel of his wife and
the fine raiment of her children; and kept saying each to other,
“Verily, the King of Baghdad hath no such gear; no, nor any other of the
kings or lords or merchants!” So they ceased not to fare forwards in
high great state, the men with Ali of Cairo and the Harims with his
Harim, till they came to the mansion,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirtieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that they ceased not to
fare forwards in high state, the men with Ali’s men and the women with
his wife, till they came to the mansion, where they alighted and brought
the mules and their burdens into the midst of the courtyard. Then they
unloaded them and warehoused the goods whilst the merchants’ wives went
up with Ali’s family to the saloon, which they found as it were a
luxuriant garden, spread with magnificent furniture. They sat in mirth
and good cheer till noon, when they brought them up the midday meal, all
manner meats and sweetmeats of the very best; and they ate and drank
costly sherbets and perfumed themselves thereafter with rose-water and
scented woods. Then they took leave and went home, men and women; and,
when the merchants returned to their places, they sent presents to the
husband according to their conditions; and their wives likewise sent
presents to the wife, so that there came to them great store of
handmaids and negroes and Mamelukes; and all kinds of goods, such as
grain, sugar and so forth, in abundance beyond account. As for the
Baghdad merchant, the landlord of the house, he abode with Ali and
quitted him not, but said to him, “Let the black slaves and servants
take the mules and the common cattle into one of my other houses, to
rest.” Quoth Ali, “They set out again to-night for such a place.” Then
he gave them leave to go forth and camp outside the city, that they
might start on their journey at night-come; whereupon, hardly believing
that they were dismissed, they took leave of him and departing to the
outliers of the city, flew off through the air to their several abodes.
So Ali and his house-owner sat together till a third of the night was
past, when their colloquy ended and the merchant returned to his own
house and Ali went up to his wife and children and after saluting them,
said, “What hath befallen you in my absence all this time?” So she told
him what they had suffered of hunger and nakedness and travail, and he
said, “Praised be Allah for safety! How did ye come?” Answered she, “O
my lord, I was asleep with my children yesternight, when suddenly and
unexpectedly one raised us from the ground and flew with us through the
firmament without doing us any hurt, nor did he leave flying with us,
till he set us down in a place as it were an Arab camping-ground, where
we saw laden mules and a travelling litter borne upon two great mules,
and around it servants, all boys and men. So I asked them:—Who are ye
and what are these loads and where are we?; and they answered:—We are
the servants of the merchant Ali of Cairo, son of the merchant-jeweller,
who hath sent us to fetch you to him at Baghdad. Quoth I, Tell me, is it
far or near, hence to Baghdad? They replied, Near: there lieth between
us and the city but the darkness of the night. Then they mounted us in
the litter and, when the morrow dawned, we found ourselves with thee,
without having suffered any hurt whatever.” Quoth he, “Who gave you
these dresses;” and quoth she, “The chief of the caravan opened one of
the boxes on the mules and taking out thereof these clothes, clad me and
thy children each in a suit; after which he locked the case and gave me
the key, saying, Take care of it, till thou give it to thy husband. And
here it is safe by me.” So saying, she gave him the key, and he said,
“Dost thou know the chest?” Said she, “Yes, I know it.” So he took her
down to the magazine and showed her the boxes, when she cried, “This is
the one whence the dresses were taken;” upon which he put the key in the
lock and opened the chest, wherein he found much raiment and the keys of
all the other cases. So he took them and fell to opening them, one after
another, and feasting his eyes upon the gems and precious ores they
contained, whose like was not found with any of the kings; after which
he locked them again, took the keys, and returned to the saloon, saying
to his wife, “This is of the bounty of Almighty Allah!” Then bringing
her to the secret slab he turned the pin and opened the door of the
closet, into which he entered with her and showed her the gold he had
laid up therein. Quoth she, “Whence came all this to thee?” “It came to
me by the grace of my Lord,” answered he:——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirty-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Ali’s wife
had looked upon the gold she said to him, “Whence came all this to
thee?” “It came to me by the grace of my Lord,” answered he: “When I
left thee in my trouble, I shipped at Bulak for Damietta and met a
friend there who forwarded me to Damascus”: in brief he told her all
that had befallen him, from first to last. Said she, “O my lord, all
this cometh by boon of thy father’s blessing and orisons when he prayed
for thee, before his death, saying:—I beseech Allah to cast thee into no
straits except He grant thee ready relief! So praised be Allah Almighty
for that He hath brought thee deliverance and hath requited thee with
more than went from thee! But Allah upon thee, O my lord, return not to
thy practice of associating with doubtful folk; but look thou fear Allah
(whose name be exalted!) both in private and in public.” And as she went
on to admonish him, he said, “I accept thine admonition and beg the
Almighty to remove the froward from amongst us and stablish us in His
obedience and in the observance of the law and practice of His Prophet,
on whom be blessings and peace!” After that Ali and his wife and
children were in all solace of life and gladness; and he opened him a
shop in the merchants’ bazar and, stocking it with a somewhat of jewels
and bullion, sat therein with his children and white servants. Presently
he became the most considerable of the merchants of Baghdad, and his
report reached the King of that city,[273] who sent a messenger to
command his attendance, saying, “Answer the summons of the King who
requireth thee.” He replied, “I hear and obey,” and straightway prepared
his present and he took four trays of red gold and, filling them with
jewels and precious metals, such as no King possessed, went up to the
palace and presenting himself before the presence, kissed the ground
between his hands and wished him endurance of goods and glory in the
finest language he could command. Said the King, “O merchant, thou
cheerest our city with thy presence!” and Ali rejoined, “O King of the
age, thy slave hath brought thee a gift and hopeth for acceptance
thereof from thy favour.” Then he laid the four trays before the King,
who uncovered them and seeing that they contained gems, whose fellows he
possessed not and whose worth equalled treasuries of money, said, “Thy
present is accepted, O merchant, and Inshallah! we will requite thee
with its like.” And Ali kissed his hands and went away; whereupon the
King called his grandees and said to them, “How many of the Kings have
sought my daughter in marriage?” “Many,” answered they; and he asked,
“Hath any of them given me the like of this gift?”; whereto they
replied, “Not one, for that none of them hath its like;” and he said, “I
have consulted Allah Almighty by lot as to marrying my daughter to this
merchant. What say ye?” “Be it as thou reckest,” answered they. Then he
bade the eunuch carry the four trays into his serraglio and going in to
his wife, laid them before her. She uncovered them and seeing therein
that whose like she possessed not; no, nor a fraction thereof, said to
him, “From which of the Kings hadst thou these?: perchance of one of the
royalties that seek thy daughter in marriage?” Said he, “Not so, I had
them of an Egyptian merchant, who is lately come to this our city. Now
when I heard of his coming I sent to command him to us, thinking to make
his acquaintance, so haply we might find with him somewhat of jewels and
buy them of him for our daughter’s trousseau. He obeyed our summons and
brought us these four trays, as a present, and I saw him to be a
handsome youth of dignified aspect and intelligent as elegant, almost
such as should be the sons of Kings. Wherefore my heart inclined to him
at sight, and my heart rejoiced in him and I thought good to marry my
daughter to him. So I showed the gift to my grandees, who agreed with me
that none of the Kings hath the like of these and I told them my
project. But what sayst thou?”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirty-second Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the King of
Baghdad, after showing the presents to his wife and highly praising Ali,
the merchant-jeweller, and informing her of the proposed marriage,
asked, “But what sayst thou?” She replied, “O King of the age, the
ordering this affair is in Allah’s hand, and thine, and whatso Allah
willeth shall come to pass.” Rejoined the King, “If it be His will, I
will marry her to none other than this young man.” He slept on this
resolve and on the morrow, he went out to his Divan and summoned Ali and
the rest of the merchants of Baghdad, and when all came bade them be
seated. Then said he, “Bring me the Kazi of the Divan” and they brought
him; whereupon the King said to him, “O Kazi, write the contract of
marriage between my daughter and the merchant Ali the Cairene.” But Ali
said, “Thy pardon, O our lord the Sultan! It befitteth not that a trader
such as I, be the King’s son-in-law.” Quoth the King, “It is my will to
bestow this favour upon thee, as well as the Wazirate;” and he invested
him forthwith in the Wazir’s office and ministerial robes. Then Ali sat
down in the chair of the Wazirate and said, “O King of the age, thou
hast bestowed on me this; and indeed I am honoured by thy bounties; but
hear one word I have to say to thee!” He replied, “Say on, and fear
not.” Quoth Ali, “Since it is thine august resolution to marry thy
daughter, thou wouldst do better to marry her to my son.” Quoth the
King, “Hast thou then a son?”; and Ali replied, “Yes.” “Send for him
forthwith,” said the King. Thereupon answered Ali, “Hearkening and
obedience!”, and despatched a servant to fetch his son, who came and
kissing the ground before the King, stood in an attitude of respect. The
King looked at him and seeing him to be yet comelier than his daughter
and goodlier than she in stature and proportion and brightness and
perfection, said to him, “What is thy name, O my son?” “My name is
Hasan, O our lord the Sultan,” replied the young man, who was then
fourteen years old. Then the Sultan said to the Kazi, “Write the
contract of marriage between my daughter Husn al-Wujúd and Hasan, son of
the merchant Ali the Cairene.” So he wrote the marriage-contract between
them, and the affair was ended in the goodliest fashion; after which all
in the Divan went their ways and the merchants followed the Wazir Ali,
escorting him to his house, where they gave him joy of his advancement
and departed. Then he went in to his wife, who seeing him clad in the
Wazir’s habit, exclaimed, “What is this?”; when he told her all that had
passed from first to last and she joyed therein with exceeding joy. So
sped the night and on the morrow, he went up to the Divan, where the
King received him with especial favour and seating him close by his
side, said, “O Wazir, we purpose to begin the wedding festivities and
bring thy son in to our daughter.” Replied Ali, “O our lord the Sultan,
whatso thou deemest good is good.” So the Sultan gave orders to
celebrate the festivities, and they decorated the city and held high
festival for thirty days, in all joy and gladness; at the end of which
time, Hasan, son of the Wazir Ali, went in to the Princess and enjoyed
her beauty and loveliness. When the Queen saw her daughter’s husband,
she conceived a warm affection for him, and in like manner she rejoiced
greatly in his mother. Then the King bade build for his son-in-law Hasan
Ali-son a palace beside his own; so they built him with all speed a
splendid palace in which he took up his abode; and his mother used to
tarry with him some days and then go down to her own house. After awhile
the Queen said to her husband, “O King of the age, Hasan’s lady-mother
cannot take up her abode with her son and leave the Wazir; neither can
she tarry with the Wazir and leave her son.” “Thou sayest sooth,”
replied the King, and bade edify a third palace beside that of Hasan,
which being done in a few days he caused remove thither the goods of the
Wazir, and the Minister and his wife took up their abode there. Now the
three palaces communicated with one another, so that when the King had a
mind to speak with the Wazir by night, he would go to him or send to
fetch him; and so with Hasan and his father and mother. On this wise
they dwelt in all solace and in the greatest happiness——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the King and the
Wazir and his son ceased not to dwell in all solace and in the greatest
happiness awhile, till the King fell ill and his sickness grew on him.
So he summoned the lords of his realm and said to them, “There is come
upon me a sore malady, peradventure a mortal; and I have therefore
summoned you to consult you respecting a certain matter, on which I
would have you counsel me as you deem well.” They asked, “What is the
matter of which thou wouldst take counsel with us, O King?”; and he
answered, “I am old and sickly and I fear for the realm after me from
its enemies; so I would have you all agree upon some one, that I may
proclaim him King in my lifetime and so ye may be at ease.” Whereupon
quoth they with one voice, “We all approve of thy daughter’s husband
Hasan, son of the Wazir Ali; for we have seen his wit and perfect
understanding, and he knoweth the place of all, great and small.” Asked
the King, “Are ye indeed agreed upon this?” and they answered, “Yes.”
Rejoined he “Peradventure ye all say this to my face, of respect for me;
but behind my back ye will say otherwise.” However, they all replied,
“By Allah, our word is one and the same in public and in private, and we
accept him frankly and with heartiness of heart and breadth of breast.”
Quoth he, “Since the case is thus, bring the Kazi of the Holy Law and
all the Chamberlains and Viceroys and Officers of state before me
to-morrow, and we will order the affair after the goodliest fashion.”
“We hear and we obey,” answered they and withdrawing, notified all the
Olema,[274] the doctors of the law and the chief personages among the
Emirs. So when the morrow dawned, they came up to the Divan and having
craved and obtained permission to enter, they saluted the King, saying,
“Here are we all in thy presence.” Whereto he made reply, “O Emirs of
Baghdad, whom will ye have to be King over you after me, that I may
inaugurate him during my lifetime, before the presence of you all?”
Quoth they with one voice, “We are agreed upon thy daughter’s husband
Hasan, son of the Wazir Ali.” Quoth he, “If it be so, go all of you and
bring him before me.” So they all arose and, repairing to Hasan’s
palace, said to him, “Rise, come with us to the King.” “Wherefore?”
asked he, and they answered, “For a thing that will benefit both us and
thee.” So he went in with them to the King and kissed the ground before
his father-in-law who said to him, “Be seated, O my son!” He sat down
and the King continued, “O Hasan, all the Emirs have approved of thee
and agreed to make thee King over them after me; and it is my purpose to
proclaim thee, whilst I yet live, and so make an end of the business.”
But Hasan stood up and, kissing the ground once more before the King,
said to him, “O our lord the King, among the Emirs there be many who are
older than I and greater of worth; acquit me therefore of this thing.”
But all the Emirs cried out saying, “We consent not but that thou be
King over us.” Then said Hasan, “My father is older than I, and I and he
are one thing; and it befits not to advance me over him.” But Ali said,
“I will consent to nothing save whatso contenteth my brethren; and they
have all chosen and agreed upon thee; wherefore gainsay thou not the
King’s commandment and that of thy brethren.” And Hasan hung his head
abashed before the King and his father. Then said the King to the Emirs,
“Do ye all accept of him?” “We do,” answered they and recited thereupon
seven Fátihahs.[275] So the King said, “O Kazi, draw up a legal
instrument testifying of these Emirs that they are agreed to make King
over them my daughter’s husband Hasan.” The Kazi wrote the act and made
it binding on all men,[276] after they had sworn in a body the oath of
fealty to Hasan. Then the King did likewise and bade him take his seat
on the throne of kingship; whereupon they all arose and kissed King
Hasan’s hands and did homage to him, and swore lealty to him. And the
new King dispensed justice among the people that day in fashion right
royal, and invested the grandees of the realm in splendid robes of
honour. When the Divan broke up, he went in to and kissed the hands of
his father-in-law who spake thus to him, “O my son, look thou rule the
lieges in the fear of Allah;”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirty-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when King Hasan
was quit of the Divan, he went in to and kissed the hands of his wife’s
father, who spake thus to him, “O my son, look thou rule the lieges in
the fear of Allah;” whereto he replied, “O my father, through thy
prayers for me, the grace and guidance of Allah will come to me.” Then
he entered his own palace and was met by his wife and her mother and
their attendants, who kissed his hands and gave him joy of his
advancement, saying, “Be this day blessed!” Next he went in to his
father and mother, who joyed with exceeding joy in that which Allah had
vouchsafed him of his advancement to the kingship, and his father
charged him to fear Allah and to deal mercifully with his subjects. He
passed the night in glee and gladness, and on the morrow, having prayed
the obligatory prayers ending with the usual short chapters[277] of the
Koran, he went up to the Divan, whither came all his officers and
dignitaries. He passed the day in dispensing justice among the folk,
bidding to graciousness and forbidding ungraciousness and appointing to
place and displacing, till day-end, when the Divan broke up, after the
goodliest fashion, and all the troops withdrew and each went his own
way. Then he arose and repaired to the palace, where he found his
father-in-law’s sickness grown heavy upon him and said to him, “May no
ill befal thee!” At this the old King opened his eyes and said, “O
Hasan!” and he replied, “At thy service, O my lord.” Quoth the old King,
“Mine appointed hour is at hand: be thou careful of thy wife and her
mother, and look thou fear Allah and honour thy parents; and bide in awe
of the majesty of the Requiting King and bear in mind that He commandeth
justice and good works.” And King Hasan replied, “I hear and obey.” Now
after this the old King lingered three days and then departed into the
mercy of Almighty Allah. So they laid him out and shrouded and buried
him and held over him readings and perlections of the Koran, to the end
of the customary forty days. And King Hasan, son of the Wazir, reigned
in his stead, and his subjects joyed in him and all his days were
gladness; moreover, his father ceased not to be his chief Wazir on his
right hand, and he took to himself another Wazir, to be at his left
hand. His reign was a prosperous and well ordered, and he lived a long
life as King of Baghdad; and Allah blessed him, by the old King’s
daughter, with three sons who inherited the kingdom after him; and they
abode in the solace of life and its pleasures till there came to them
the Destroyer of delights and the Severer of societies. And glory be to
Him who is eternal and in whose hand are annulling and confirming. And
of the tales they tell is one of


Footnote 258:

  And We will prove you with evil, and with good, for a trial of you;
  and unto Us shall ye return (Koran xxi. 36). The saying is always in
  the Moslem’s mouth.

Footnote 259:

  Arab. “Sunnat,” lit. = a law, especially applied to the habit and
  practice of the Apostle in religious and semi-religious matters,
  completing the “Hadis,” or his spoken words. Anything unknown is
  entitled “Bida’ah” = innovation. Hence the strict Moslem is a model
  Conservative whose exemplar of life dates from the seventh century.
  This fact may be casuistically explained away; but is not less an
  obstacle to all progress and it will be one of the principal dangers
  threatening Al-Islam. Only fair to say that an “innovation” introduced
  by a perfect follower of the Prophet is held equal theoretically to a
  Sunnat; but vulgarly it is said, “The rabble will not take gold which
  is not coined.”

Footnote 260:

  Arab. “Arsh” = the ninth Heaven, the Throne of the Deity, above the
  Seven Heavens of the planets and the Primum Mobile which, in the
  Ptolemaic system, sets them all in motion.

Footnote 261:

  This description of a good Moslem’s death is at once concise, pathetic
  and picturesque.

Footnote 262:

  This is the first mention of coffee, apparently introduced by the
  scribe: the word rendered “coffee-makers” is “Kahwajiyah”; an Arab.
  plur. of a Turkish termination (-ji) to an Arab. word “Kahwah” (before

Footnote 263:

  Picnics are still made to Rauzah (Rodah) island: I have enjoyed many a
  one, but the ground is all private property.

Footnote 264:

  Arab. “Hosh,” plur. Híshán, the low courts surrounded by mean lodgings
  which in “native” Cairo still contrast so strongly with the
  “gingerbread” of the new buildings.

Footnote 265:

  This is the Moslem equivalent of “thank you.” He looks upon the donor
  as the channel through which Allah sends him what he wants and prays
  for more to come. Thus “May your shadow never be less” means, May you
  increase in prosperity so that I may gain thereby! And if a beggar is
  disposed to be insolent (a very common case), he will tell you his
  mind pretty freely on the subject, and make it evident to you that all
  you have is also his and that La propriété (when not shared) est le

Footnote 266:

  I have noticed in my Pilgrimage (i. 51–53) the kindly care with which
  the stranger is treated by Moslems, a marvellous contrast to the ways
  of “civilization.”

Footnote 267:

  Arab. “Dimyat,” vulg. pronounced “Dumíyat.”

Footnote 268:

  Where the doorkeepers sit and receive their friends.

Footnote 269:

  This is a traveller’s “Kit” in the East.

Footnote 270:

  Arab. “Takht-rawán,” from Persian meaning “moveable throne.”

Footnote 271:

  The use of the expression proved the speaker to be a Moslem Jinní.

Footnote 272:

  The “haunted” house proper, known to the vulgar and to spiritualists
  becomes, I have said, amongst Moslems a place tenanted by Jinns.

Footnote 273:

  Needless to say there never was a Sultan or a King of Baghdad nor a
  Duke of Athens. This story would seem not to have been written by the
  author of “the Emir bin Tahir,” etc. Night ccccxxiv.

Footnote 274:

  Plur. of Álim = one learned in the law, a D.D. Mohammed did his best
  to abolish the priest and his craft by making each Moslem
  paterfamilias a pontifex in his own household and he severely
  condemned monkery and celibacy. But human nature was too much for him:
  even before his death ascetic associations began to crop up. Presently
  the Olema in Al-Islam formed themselves into a kind of clergy; with
  the single but highly important difference that they must (or ought
  to) live by some honest secular calling and not by the “cure of
  souls”; hence Mahomet IV. of Turkey was solemnly deposed. So far and
  no farther Mohammed was successful and his success has secured for him
  the lively and lasting hatred of the ecclesiastical caste which he so
  honestly and wisely attempted to abate. Even to the present day
  missionaries have a good word for the Guebre and the Buddhist, the
  Brahmanist and the Confucian, but none for the Moslem: Dr.
  Livingstone, for one instance of many, evidently preferred the
  Fetichist, whom he could convert, to the Unitarian Faithful whom he
  could not.

Footnote 275:

  _i.e._ they recited seven times (an unusual number), for greater
  solemnity, the opening Chapter of the Koran which does general duty on
  such occasions as making covenants and swearing fealty. This
  proclaiming a King by acclamation suggests the origin of the old and
  venerable Portuguese institution.

Footnote 276:

  By affixing his own seal and that of the King. This in later times was
  supplanted by the “Tughrá,” the imperial cypher or counter-mark (much
  like a writing master’s flourish), with which Europe has now been made
  familiar through the agency of Turkish tobacco.

Footnote 277:

  Arab. “Wird” = the twenty-five last chapters of the Koran which are
  repeated, one or more at a time, after the end of the “Farz,” or
  obligatory prayers and _ad libitum_ with the Sunnat or customary, and
  the Náfilah or supererogatory.


A man of the pilgrims once slept a long sleep and awaking, found no
trace of the caravan. So he rose up and walked on, but lost his way and
presently came to a tent, where he saw an old woman standing at the
entrance and by her side a dog asleep. He went up to the tent and,
saluting the old woman, sought of her food, when she replied, “Go to
yonder Wady and catch thy sufficiency of serpents, that I may broil of
them for thee and give thee to eat.” Rejoined the pilgrim, “I dare not
catch serpents nor did I ever eat them.” Quoth the old woman, “I will go
with thee and catch some; fear not.” So she went with him, followed by
the dog, to the valley and, catching a sufficient number of serpents,
proceeded to broil them. He saw nothing for it (saith the story teller)
but to eat, in fear of hunger and exhaustion; so he ate of the
serpents.[278] Then he was athirst and asked for water to drink; and she
answered, “Go to the spring and drink.” Accordingly, he went to the
spring and found the water thereof bitter; yet needs must he drink of it
despite its bitterness, because of the violence of his thirst. Presently
he returned to the old woman and said to her, “I marvel, O ancient dame,
at thy choosing to sojourn in this place”——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirty-fifth Night,

She said, it hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
palmer-man drank the bitter draught for stress of thirst, he returned
and said “I marvel, O ancient dame, at thy choosing to sojourn in this
place and thy putting up with such meat and drink!” She asked, “And how
is it then in thy country?”; whereto he answered, “In my country are
houses wide and spacious and fruits ripe and delicious and waters sweet
and viands savorous and of goodly use and meats fat and full of juice
and flocks innumerous and all things pleasant and all the goods of life,
the like whereof are not, save in the Paradise which Allah the
Omnipotent hath promised to His servants pious.” Replied she, “All this
have I heard: but tell me, have ye a Sultan who ruleth over you and is
tyrannical in his rule and under whose hand you are; one who, if any of
you commit an offence, taketh his goods and ruineth him and who, whenas
he will, turneth you out of house and home and uprooteth you, stock and
branch?” Replied the man, “Indeed that may be;” and she rejoined, “If
so, by Allah, these your delicious food and life of dainty-hood and
gifts however good, with tyranny and oppression, are but a searching
poison, while our coarse meat which in freedom and safety we eat is a
healthful medicine. Hast thou not heard that the best of boons, after
Al-Islam, the true Faith, are sanity and security?”[279] Now such boons
(quoth he who telleth the tale) may be by the just rule of the Sultan,
Vice-regent of Allah on His earth, and the goodness of his polity. The
Sultan of time past needed but little awfulness, for when the lieges saw
him, they feared him; but the Sultan of these days hath need of the most
accomplished polity and the utmost majesty, because men are not as men
of by-gone time and this our age is one of folk opprobrious, and is
greatly calamitous, noted for folly and hardness of heart and inclined
to hate and enmity. If, therefore, the Sultan (which Almighty Allah
forfend!) be weak or wanting in polity and majesty, this will be the
assured cause of his country’s ruin. Quoth the proverb, “An hundred
years of the Sultan’s tyranny, but not one year of the people’s tyranny
one over other.” When the lieges oppress one another, Allah setteth over
them a tyrannical Sultan and a terrible King. Thus it is told in history
that one day there was sent to Al-Hajjáj bin Yúsuf a slip of paper,
whereon was written, “Fear Allah and oppress not His servants with all
manner of oppression.” When he read this, he mounted the pulpit (for he
was eloquent and ever ready of speech), and said, “O folk, Allah
Almighty hath made me ruler over you, by reason of your
frowardness;”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hajjaj
Yusuf-son read the paper he mounted the pulpit and said, “O folk, Allah
Almighty hath made me ruler over you by reason of your frowardness; and
indeed, though I die yet will ye not be delivered from oppression, with
these your ill deeds; for the Almighty hath created like unto me many an
one. If it be not I, ‘twill be one more mischievous than I and a
mightier in oppression and a more merciless in his majesty; even as
saith the poet:[280]—

                  For not a deed the hand can try
                  Save ‘neath the hand of God on high,
                  Nor tyrant harsh work tyranny
                  Uncrushed by tyrant harsh as he.

Tyranny is feared: but justice is the best of all things. We beg Allah
to better our case!” And among tales is that of


Footnote 278:

  The sensible creed of Al-Islam freely allows anthropophagy when it
  saves life; a contrast to the sentimentalism of the West which brings
  a “charge of cannibalism” against unfortunate expeditionists. I
  particularly allude to the scandalous pulings of the English Press
  over the gallant and unfortunate Greely voyage (The Academy, Sept. 25,

Footnote 279:

  The story is mere Æsopic: the “Two dogs” contains it all. One
  of Mohammed’s sensible sayings is recorded and deserves
  repetition:—“Empire endureth with infidelity (idolatry, etc.), but not
  with tyranny.”

Footnote 280:

  This couplet occurs in Night xxi. (vol. i. 207); so I give Torrens (p.
  207) by way of variety.


There was once in Baghdad a man of consequence and rich in monies and
immoveables, who was one of the chiefs of the merchants; and Allah had
largely endowed him with worldly goods, but had not vouchsafed him what
he longed for of offspring; and there passed over him a long space of
time, without his being blessed with issue, male or female. His years
waxed great; his bones became wasted and his back bent; weakness and
weariness grew upon him, and he feared the loss of his wealth and
possessions, seeing he had no child whom he might make his heir and by
whom his name should be remembered. So he betook himself with
supplication to Almighty Allah, fasting by day and praying through the
night. Moreover, he vowed many vows to the Living, the Eternal; and
visited the pious and was constant in supplication to the Most Highest,
till He gave ear to him and accepted his prayer and took pity on his
straining and complaining; so that, before many days were past, he knew
carnally one of his women and she conceived by him the same night. In
due time she finished her months and, casting her burden, bore a male
child as he were a slice of the moon; whereupon the merchant fulfilled
his vows in his gratitude to Allah, (to whom be honour and glory!) and
gave alms and clothed the widow and the orphan. On the seventh night
after the boy’s birth, he named him Abu al-Husn,[282] and the wet-nurses
suckled him and the dry-nurses dandled him and the servants and the
slaves carried him and handled him, till he shot up and grew tall and
throve greatly and learnt the Sublime Koran and the ordinances of
Al-Islam and the canons of the True Faith; and calligraphy and poetry
and mathematics and archery. On this wise he became the union-pearl of
his age and the goodliest of the folk of his time and his day; fair of
face and of tongue fluent, carrying himself with a light and graceful
gait and glorying in his stature proportionate and amorous graces which
were to many a bait: and his cheeks were red and flower-white was his
forehead and his side face waxed brown with tender down, even as saith
one, describing him:—

 The spring of the down on cheeks right clearly shows: ✿ And how when the
    Spring is gone shall last the rose?
 Dost thou not see that the growth upon his cheek ✿ Is violet-bloom that
    from its leaves outgrows.

He abode awhile in ease and happiness with his father, who rejoiced and
delighted in him, till he came to man’s estate, when the merchant one
day made him sit down before him and said, “O my son, the appointed term
draweth near; my hour of death is at hand and it remaineth but to meet
Allah (to whom belong Majesty and Might!). I leave thee what shall
suffice thee, even to thy son’s son, of monies and mansions, farms and
gardens; wherefore, fear thou Almighty Allah, O my son, in dealing with
that which I bequeath to thee and follow none but those who will help
thee to the Divine favour.” Not long after, he sickened and died; so his
son ordered his funeral,[283] after the goodliest wise, and burying him,
returned to his house and sat mourning for him many days and nights. But
behold, certain of his friends came in to him and said to him, “Whoso
leaveth a son like thee is not dead; indeed, what is past is past and
fled and mourning beseemeth none but the young maid and the wife
cloistered.” And they ceased not from him till they wrought on him to
enter the Hammam and break off his mourning.——And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Abu al-Husn
was visited by his friends and taken to the Hammam and persuaded to
break off his mourning, he presently forgot his father’s charge, and his
head was turned by his riches; he thought fortune would always wone with
him as it was, and that wealth would ever wax and never wane. So he ate
and drank and made merry and took his pleasure and gave gifts of gear
and coin and was profuse with gold and addrest himself up to eating
fowls and breaking the seals of wine-flasks and listening to the giggle
of the daughter of the vine, as she gurgled from the flagon and enjoying
the jingle of the singing-girls; nor did he give over this way of life,
till his wealth was wasted and the case worsened and all his goods went
from him and he bit his hands[284] in bitter penitence. For of a truth
he had nothing left, after that which he had squandered, but a
concubine, a slave-girl whom his father had bequeathed to him with the
rest of his estate: and she had no equal in beauty and loveliness and
brightness and liveliness and symmetric stature and perfect grace. She
was past mistress in every manner of arts and accomplishments and
endowed with many excellences, surpassing all the folk of her age and
time. She was grown more notorious than a way-mark,[285] for her
seductive genius, and outdid the fair both in theory and practice, and
she was noted for her swimming gait, flexile and delicate, albeit she
was full five feet in height and by all the boons of fortune deckt and
dight, with strait arched brows twain, as they were the crescent moon of
Sha’abán,[286] and eyes like gazelles’ eyne; and nose like the edge of
scymitar fine and cheeks like anemones of blood-red shine; and mouth
like Solomon’s seal and sign and teeth like necklaces of pearls in line;
and navel holding an ounce of oil of benzoin and waist more slender than
his body whom love hath wasted and whom concealment hath made sick with
pine and hind parts heavier than two hills of sand; briefly she was a
volume of charms after his saying who saith:—

 Her fair shape ravisheth, if face to face she did appear, ✿ And if she
    turn, for severance from her she slayeth sheer.
 Sun-like, full-moon-like, sapling-like, unto her character ✿
    Estrangement no wise appertains nor cruelty austere.
 Under the bosom of her shift the garths of Eden are ✿ And the full-moon
    revolveth still upon her neck-rings’ sphere.[287]

She seemed a full moon rising and a gazelle browsing, a girl of nine
plus five[288] shaming the moon and sun, even as saith of her the sayer
eloquent and ingenious:—

 Semblance of full-moon Heaven bore, ✿ When five and five are conjoined
    by four;
 ‘Tis not my sin if she made of me ✿ Its like when it riseth horizon

Clean of skin, odoriferous of breath, it seemed as if she were of fire
fashioned and of crystal moulded; rose-red was the cheek of her and
perfect the shape and form of her; even as one saith of her, describing

 Scented with sandal[290] and musk, right proudly doth she go, ✿ With
    gold and rose and saffron-colour aglow.
 A flower in a garden she is, a pearl in an ouch of gold ✿ Or an image in
    chapel[291] set for worship of high and low.
 Slender and shapely she is; vivacity bids her arise, ✿ But the weight of
    her hips says, “Sit, or softly and slowly go.”
 Whenas her favours I seek and sue for my heart’s desire, ✿ “Be
    gracious,” her beauty says; but her coquetry answers, “No.”
 Glory to Him who made beauty her portion, and that ✿ Of her lover to be
    the prate of the censurers, heigho![292]

She captivated all who saw her, with the excellence of her beauty and
the sweetness of her smile,[293] and shot them down with the shafts she
launched from her eyes; and withal she was eloquent of speech and
excellently skilled in verse. Now when Abu al-Husn had squandered all
his gold, and his ill-plight all could behold, and there remained to him
naught save this slave-girl, he abode three days without tasting meat or
taking rest in sleep, and the handmaid said to him, “O my lord, carry me
to the Commander of the Faithful, Harun al-Rashid,”——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirty-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that quoth the
slave-girl to her master, “O my lord, carry me to Harun al-Rashid, fifth
of the sons of Abbas, and seek of him to my price ten thousand dinars.
If he deem me dear, say to him:—O Prince of True Believers, my handmaid
is worth more than this: do but prove her, and her value will be
magnified in thine eyes; for this slave-girl hath not her equal, and she
were unfit to any but thou.” And she added, “Beware, O my lord, of
selling me at less than the sum I have named; indeed ‘tis but little for
the like of me.” Now her owner knew not her worth nor that she had no
equal in her day; but he carried her to the Caliph and set her in the
presence and repeated what she had bidden him say. The Caliph asked her,
“What is thy name?”; to which she answered, “My name is Tawaddud.”[294]
He then enquired, “O Tawaddud, in what branches of knowledge dost thou
excel?”; and she replied, “O my lord, I am versed in syntax and poetry
and jurisprudence and exegesis and philosophy; and I am skilled in music
and the knowledge of the Divine ordinances and in arithmetic and geodesy
and geometry and the fables of the ancients. I know the Sublime Koran by
heart and have read it according to the seven, the ten and the fourteen
modes. I know the number of its chapters and versets and sections and
words; and its halves and fourths and eighths and tenths; the number of
prostrations which occur in it and the sum total of its letters; and I
know what there is in it of abrogating and abrogated[295]; also what
parts of it were revealed at Al-Medinah and what at Meccah and the cause
of the different revelations. I know the Holy Traditions of the
Apostle’s sayings, historical and legendary, the established and those
whose ascription is doubtful; and I have studied the exact sciences,
geometry and philosophy and medicine and logic and rhetoric and
composition; and I have learnt many things by rote and am passionately
fond of poetry. I can play the lute and know its gamut and notes and
notation and the crescendo and diminuendo. If I sing and dance, I
seduce, and if I dress and scent myself, I slay. In fine, I have reached
a pitch of perfection such as can be estimated only by those of them who
are firmly rooted in knowledge.”[296] Now when the Caliph heard these
words spoken by one so young, he wondered at her eloquence, and turning
to Abu al-Husn, said, “I will summon those who shall discuss with her
all she claimeth to know; if she answer correctly, I will give thee the
price thou askest for her and more; and if not, thou art fitter to have
her than I.” “With gladness and goodly gree, O Commander of the
Faithful,” replied Abu al-Husn. So the Caliph wrote to the Viceroy of
Bassorah, to send him Ibrahim bin Siyyár the prosodist, who was the
first man of his day in argument and eloquence and poetry and logic, and
bade him bring with him readers of the Koran and learned doctors of the
law and physicians and astrologers and scientists and mathematicians and
philosophers; and Ibrahim was more learned than all. In a little while
they arrived at the palace of the Caliphate, knowing not what was to do,
and the Caliph sent for them to his sitting-chamber and ordered them to
be seated. So they sat down and he bade bring the damsel Tawaddud, who
came and unveiling, showed herself, as she were a sparkling star.[297]
The Caliph set her a stool of gold; and she saluted, and speaking with
an eloquent tongue, said, “O Commander of the Faithful, bid the Olema
and the doctors of law and leaches and astrologers and scientists and
mathematicians and all here present contend with me in argument.” So he
said to them, “I desire of you that ye dispute with this damsel on the
things of her faith, and stultify her argument in all she advanceth;”
and they answered, saying, “We hear and we obey Allah and thee, O
Commander of the Faithful.” Upon this Tawaddud bowed her head and said,
“Which of you is the doctor of the law, the scholar, versed in the
readings of the Koran and in the Traditions?” Quoth one of them, “I am
the man thou seekest.” Quoth she, “Then ask me of what thou wilt.” Said
the doctor, “Hast thou read the precious book of Allah and dost thou
know its cancelling and cancelled parts and hast thou meditated its
versets and its letters?” “Yes,” answered she. “Then,” said he, “I will
proceed to question thee of the obligations and the immutable
ordinances: so tell me of these, O damsel, and who is thy Lord, who thy
prophet, who thy Guide, what is thy point of fronting in prayer, and who
be thy brethren? Also what thy spiritual path and what thy highway?”
Whereto she replied, “Allah is my Lord, and Mohammed (whom Allah save
and assain!) my prophet, and the Koran is my guide and the Ka’abah my
fronting; and the True-believers are my brethren. The practice of good
is my path and the Sunnah my highway.” The Caliph again marvelled at her
words so eloquently spoken by one so young; and the doctor pursued, “O
damsel, with what do we know Almighty Allah?” Said she, “With the
understanding.” Said he, “And what is the understanding?” Quoth she, “It
is of two kinds, natural and acquired.”——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Thirty-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the damsel
continued, “The understanding is of two kinds, natural and acquired. The
natural is that which Allah (to whom be honour and glory!) created for
the right direction of His servants after His will; and the acquired is
that which men accomplish by dint of study and fair knowledge.” He
rejoined, “Thou hast answered well. (¿) Where is the seat of the
understanding?”—Allah casteth it in the heart whence its lustrous beams
ascend to the brain and there become fixed. (¿) “How knowest thou the
Prophet of Allah?”—By the reading of Allah’s Holy Book and by signs and
proofs and portents and miracles! (¿) “What are the obligations and the
immutable ordinances?”—The obligations are five, (1) Testification that
there is no iláh[298] but Allah, no god but _the_ God alone and One,
which for partner hath none, and that Mohammed is His servant and His
apostle. (2) The standing in prayers.[299] (3) The payment of the
poor-rate. (4) Fasting Ramazan. (5) The Pilgrimage to Allah’s Holy House
for all to whom the journey is possible. The immutable ordinances are
four; to wit, night and day and sun and moon, the which build up life
and hope; nor any son of Adam wotteth if they will be destroyed on the
Day of Judgment. (¿) “What are the obligatory observances of the
Faith?”—They are five, prayer, almsgiving, fasting, pilgrimage, fighting
for the Faith and abstinence from the forbidden. (¿) “Why dost thou
stand up to pray?”—To express the devout intent of the slave
acknowledging the Deity. (¿) “What are the obligatory conditions which
precede standing in prayer?”—Purification, covering the shame, avoidance
of soiled clothes, standing on a clean place, fronting the Ka’abah, an
upright posture, the intent[300] and the pronouncing “Allaho Akbar” of
prohibition.[301] (¿) “With what shouldest thou go forth from thy house
to pray?”—With the intent of worship mentally pronounced. (¿) “With what
intent shouldest thou enter the mosque?”—With an intent of service. (¿)
“Why do we front the Kiblah[302]?”—In obedience to three Divine orders
and one Traditional ordinance. (¿) “What are the beginning, the
consecration and the end of prayer?”—Purification beginneth prayer,
saying the Allaho Akbar of prohibition consecrateth, and the salutation
endeth prayer. (¿) “What deserveth he who neglecteth prayer?”—It is
reported, among the authentic Traditions of the Prophet, that he said,
“Whoso neglecteth prayer wilfully and purposely hath no part in
Al-Islam.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

          Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fortieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that after the damsel
had repeated the words of that Holy Tradition the doctor cried, “Thou
hast replied aright: now say me, what is prayer?”—Prayer is communion
between the slave and his lord, and in it are ten virtues; (1) it
illumineth the heart; (2) it maketh the face shine; (3) it pleaseth
the Compassionate One; (4) it angereth Satan; (5) it conjureth
calamity; (6) it wardeth off the mischief of enemies; (7) it
multiplieth mercy; (8) it forfendeth vengeance and punishment; (9) it
bringeth the slave nigh unto his lord; and (10) it restraineth from
lewdness and frowardness. Hence it is one of the absolute requisites
and obligatory ordinances and the pillar of the Faith. (¿) “What is
the key of prayer?”—Wuzú or the lesser ablution. (¿) “What is the key
to the lesser ablution?”—Intention and naming the Almighty. (¿) “What
is the key of naming the Almighty?”—Assured faith. (¿) “What is the
key of faith?”—Trust in the Lord. (¿) “What is the key of trust in the
Lord?”—Hope. (¿) “What is the key of hope?”—Obedience. (¿) “What is
the key of obedience?”—The confession of the Unity and the
acknowledgment of the divinity of Allah. (¿) “What are the Divine
ordinances of Wuzu, the minor ablution?”[303]—They are six, according
to the canon of the Imam al-Sháfi’í Mohammed bin Idris (of whom Allah
accept!); (1) intent while washing the face; (2) washing the face; (3)
washing the hands and fore-arms; (4) wiping part of the head; (5)
washing the feet and heels; and (6) observing due order.[304] And the
traditional statutes are ten, (1) nomination; (2) and washing the
hands before putting them into the water-pot; (3) and mouth-rinsing;
(4) and snuffing;[305] (5) and wiping the whole head; (6) and wetting
the ears within and without with fresh water; (7) and separating a
thick beard; (8) and separating the fingers and toes;[306] (9) and
washing the right foot before the left and (10) doing each of these
thrice and all in unbroken order. When the minor ablution is ended,
the worshipper should say, I testify that there is no god but _the_
God, the One, which for partner hath none, and I testify that Mohammed
is His servant and His apostle. O my Allah, make me of those who
repent and in purity are permanent! Glory to Thee, O my God, and in
Thy praise I bear witness, that there is no god save Thou! I crave
pardon of Thee and I repent to Thee! For it is reported, in the Holy
Traditions, that the Prophet (whom Allah bless and preserve!) said of
this prayer:—Whoso endeth every ablution with this prayer, the eight
gates of Paradise are open to him; he shall enter at which he
pleaseth. (¿) “When a man purposeth ablution, what betideth him from
the angels and the devils?”—When a man prepareth for ablution, the
angels come and stand on his right and the devils on his left
hand.[307] If he name Almighty Allah at the beginning of the ablution,
the devils flee from him and the angels hover over him with a pavilion
of light, having four ropes, to each an angel glorifying Allah and
craving pardon for him, so long as he remaineth silent or calleth upon
the name of Allah. But if he omit to begin washing with naming Allah
(to whom belong might and majesty!), neither remain silent, the devils
take command of him; and the angels depart from him and Satan
whispereth evil thoughts unto him, till he fall into doubt and come
short in his ablution. For (quoth he on whom be blessing and
peace!):—A perfect ablution driveth away Satan and assureth against
the tyranny of the Sultan; and again quoth he:—If calamity befal one
who is not pure by ablution; verily and assuredly let him blame none
but himself. (¿) “What should a man do when he awaketh from sleep?”—He
should wash his hands thrice, before putting them into the water
vessel. (¿) “What are the Koranic and traditional orders anent Ghusl,
the complete ablution[308]?”—The divine ordinances are intent and
‘crowning’[309] the whole body with water, that is, the liquid shall
come at every part of the hair and skin. Now the traditional
ordinances are the minor ablution as preliminary; rubbing the body;
separating the hair and deferring in words[310] the washing of the
feet till the end of the ablution.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Forty-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
had recounted to the doctor what were the divine and traditional orders
anent Ghusl or total ablution, quoth he, “Thou hast replied aright: now
tell me what are the occasions for Tayammum, or making the ablution with
sand and dust; and what are the ordinances thereof, divine and
human?”—The reasons are seven, viz., want of water; fear lest water
lack; need thereto; going astray on a march; sickness; having broken
bones in splints and having open wounds.[311] As for its ordinances, the
divine number four, viz., intent, dust, clapping it to the face and
clapping it upon the hands; and the human number two, nomination and
preferring the right before the left hand. (¿) “What are the conditions,
the pillars or essentials, and the traditional statutes of prayer?”—The
conditions are five, (1) purification of the members; (2) covering of
the privy parts; (3) observing the proper hours, either of certainty or
to the best of one’s belief; (4) fronting the Kiblah; and (5) standing
on a clean place. The pillars or essentials number twelve, (1) intent;
(2) the Takbír or magnification of prohibition; (3) standing when able
to stand[312]; (4) repeating the Fatihah or opening chapter of the Koran
and saying, In the name of Allah, the Compassionating the Compassionate!
with a verse thereof according to the canon of the Imam Al-Shafi’i; (5)
bowing the body and keeping it bowed; (6) returning to the upright
posture and so remaining for the time requisite; (7) prostration and
permanence therein; (8) sitting between two prostrations and permanence
therein; (9) repeating the latter profession of the Faith and sitting up
therefor; (10) invoking benediction on the Prophet (whom Allah bless and
preserve!); (11) the first Salutation,[313] and (12) the intent of
making an end of prayer expressed in words. But the traditional statutes
are the call to prayer; the standing posture; raising the hands (to
either side of the face) whilst pronouncing the prohibition; uttering
the magnification before reciting the Fatihah; seeking refuge with
Allah[314]; saying, ‘Amen’; repeating the chapter of the Koran after the
Fatihah, repeating the magnifications during change of posture; saying,
May Allah hear him who praiseth Him! and O our Lord, to Thee be the
praise!; praying aloud in the proper place[315] and praying under the
breath prayers so prescribed; the first profession of unity and sitting
up thereto; blessing the Prophet therein; blessing his family in the
latter profession and the second Salutation. (¿) “On what is the Zakát
or obligatory poor-rate taxable?”—On gold and silver and camels and oxen
and sheep and wheat and barley and holcus and millet and beans and
vetches and rice and raisins and dates. (¿) “What is the Zakát or
poor-rate on gold?”—Below twenty miskals or dinars, nothing; but on that
amount half a dinar for every score and so on proportionally.[316] (¿)
“On silver?”—Under two hundred dirhams nothing, then five dirhams on
every two hundred and so forth. (¿) “On camels?”—For every five, an ewe,
or for every twenty-five a pregnant camel. (¿) “On sheep?”—An ewe for
every forty head. (¿) “What are the ordinances of the Ramazan Fast?”—The
Koranic are intent; abstinence from eating, drinking and carnal
copulation, and the stoppage of vomiting. It is incumbent on all who
submit to the Law, save women in their courses and forty days after
childbirth; and it becomes obligatory on sight of the new moon or on
news of its appearance, brought by a trustworthy person and commending
itself as truth to the hearer’s heart; and among its requisites is that
the intent be pronounced at nightfall. The traditional ordinances of
fasting are, hastening to break the fast at sundown; deferring the fore
dawn meal,[317] and abstaining from speech, save for good works and for
calling on the name of Allah and reciting the Koran. (¿) “What things
vitiate not the fast?”—The use of unguents and eye-powders and the dust
of the road and the undesigned swallowing of saliva and the emission of
seed in nocturnal pollution or at the sight of a strange woman and
blooding and cupping; none of these things vitiates the fast. (¿) “What
are the prayers of the two great annual Festivals?”—Two one-bow prayers,
which be a traditional ordinance, without call to prayer or standing up
to pronounce the call;[318] but let the Moslem say, Prayer is a
collector of all folk![319] and pronounce ‘Allaho Akbar’ seven times in
the first prayer, besides the Takbir of prohibition; and, in the second,
five times, besides the magnification of rising up (according to the
doctrine of the Imam Al-Shafi’i, on whom Allah have mercy!) and make the
profession of the Faith.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Forty-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
had answered the doctor anent the Festival-prayers, quoth he, “Thou hast
replied aright: now tell me what are the prayers prescribed on the
occasion of an eclipse of the sun or moon?”—Two one-bow prayers without
call to prayer or standing thereto by the worshipper, who shall make in
each two-bow prayer double standing up and double inclinations and
two-fold prostrations, then sit and testify and salute. (¿) “What is the
ritual of prayer for rain?”—Two one-bow prayers without call to prayer
or standing thereto; then shall the Moslem make the profession and
salute. Moreover the Imam shall deliver an exhortation and ask pardon of
Allah, in place of the magnification, as in the two sermons of the
Festivals and turn his mantle upper edge downwards and pray and
supplicate. (¿) “What are the Witr, the additional or occasional
prayers?”—The least is a one-bow prayer and the most eleven. (¿) “What
is the forenoon prayer?”—At least, two one-bow prayers and at most,
twelve. (¿) “What hast thou to say of the I’itikáf or retreat[320]?”—It
is a matter of traditional ordinance. (¿) “What are its conditions?”—(1)
intent; (2) not leaving the mosque save of necessity; (3) not having to
do with a woman; (4) fasting; and (5) abstaining from speech. (¿) “Under
what conditions is the Hajj or Pilgrimage[321] obligatory?”—Manhood, and
understanding and being a Moslem and practicability; in which case it is
obligatory on all, once before death. (¿) “What are the Koranic statutes
of the Pilgrimage?”—(1) The Ihrám or pilgrim’s habit; (2) the standing
at Arafat; (3) circumambulating the Ka’abah; (4) running between Safá
and Marwah[322]; and (5) shaving or clipping the hair. (¿) “What are the
Koranic statutes of the ‘Umrah[323] or lesser pilgrimage?”—Assuming the
pilgrim’s habit and compassing and running. (¿) “What are the Koranic
ordinances of the assumption of the pilgrim’s habit?”[324]—Doffing sewn
garments, forswearing perfume and ceasing to shave the head or pare the
nails, and avoiding the killing of game, and eschewing carnal
copulation. (¿) “What are the traditional statutes of the
pilgrimage?”—(1) The crying out “Labbay’ka, Adsum, Here am I, O our
Lord, here am I!”;[325] (2) the Ka’abah-circuitings[326] of arrival and
departure; (3) the passing the night at the Mosque of Muzdalifah and in
the valley of Mina, and (4) the lapidation.[327] (¿) “What is the Jihád
or Holy War and its essentials?”—Its essentials are (1) the descent of
the Infidels upon us; (2) the presence of the Imam; (3) a state of
preparation and (4) firmness in meeting the foe. Its traditional
ordinance is incital to battle, in that the Most High hath said, “O thou
my Prophet, incite the faithful to fight!”[328] (¿) “What are the
ordinances of buying and selling?”—The Koranic are (1) offer and
acceptance and (2) if the thing sold be a white slave, by whom one
profiteth, all possible endeavour to convert him to Al-Islam; and (3) to
abstain from usury: the traditional are making void[329] and option
before not after separating, according to his saying (whom Allah bless
and preserve!), “The parties to a sale shall have the option of
cancelling or altering terms whilst they are yet unseparated.” (¿) “What
is it forbidden to sell for what?”—On this point I mind me of an
authentic tradition, reported by Náf’i[330] of the Apostle of Allah,
that he forbade the barter of dried dates for fresh and fresh figs for
dry and jerked for fresh meat and cream for clarified butter; in fine,
all eatables of one and the same kind, it is unlawful to buy or barter
some for other some.[331] Now when the doctor of law heard her words and
knew that she was wit-keen, penetrative, ingenious and learned in
jurisprudence and the Traditions and the interpretation of the Koran and
what not else, he said in his mind, “Needs must I manœuvre with her,
that I may overcome her in the assembly of the Commander of the
Faithful.” So he said to her, “O damsel, what is the lexicographical
meaning of Wuzú?” And she answered, “Philologically it signifieth
cleanliness and freedom from impurities.” (¿) “And of Salát or
prayer?”—An invocation of good. (¿) “And of Ghusl?”—Purification. (¿)
“And of Saum or fasting?”—Abstention. (¿) “And of Zakát?”—Increase. (¿)
“And of Hajj or pilgrimage?”—Visitation. (¿) “And of Jihád?”—Repelling.
With this the doctor’s arguments were cut off,——And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Forty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the doctor’s
arguments were cut off, he rose to his feet and said, “Bear witness
against me, O Commander of the Faithful, that this damsel is more
learned in the Law than I am.” Quoth she, “I will ask thee somewhat,
which do thou answer me speedily, an thou be indeed a learned man.”
Quoth he, “Say on;” and she said, “What are the arrows of the Faith?”
Answered he, “They number ten, (1) Testification, that is, religion; (2)
Prayer, that is, the covenant; (3) Alms, that is, purification; (4)
Fasting, that is, defensive armour; (5) Pilgrimage, that is, the Law;
(6) Fighting for the Faith, that is, a general duty; (7) Bidding to
beneficence and (8) Forbidding from frowardness, both of which are a
man’s honour; (9) Commune,[332] that is, sociableness of the Faithful;
and (10) Seeking knowledge, that is, the praiseworthy path.” She
rejoined, “Thou hast replied aright and now remaineth but one question,
What be the roots or fundamentals of Al-Islam?” He said, “They are four,
sincerity of belief, truth of intent, observance of the lawful limit and
keeping the covenant.” Then said she, “I have one more question to ask
thee, which if thou answer, it is well; else, I will take thy clothes.”
Quoth he, “Speak, O damsel;” and she said, “What are the branches or
superstructure of Al-Islam?” But he was silent awhile and made no reply:
so she cried, “Doff thy clothes and I will expound them to thee.” Quoth
the Caliph “Expound them, and I will make him put off his clothes for
thee.” She said, “There are two-and-twenty branches; (1) holding fast to
the Book of Allah the Most Highest; (2) taking example by His Apostle
(whom Allah bless and preserve!); (3) abstaining from evil doing; (4)
eating what is lawful and (5) avoiding what is unlawful; (6) restitution
of things wrongfully taken; (7) repentance; (8) knowledge of the Law;
(9) love of the Friend,[333] (10) and of the followers of the true
Revelation; (11) belief in the apostles of Al-Islam; (12) fear of
apostacy; (13) preparation for departing this life; (14) force of
conviction; (15) mercy on all possible occasions; (16) strength in time
of weakness; (17) patience under trials; (18) knowledge of Allah
Almighty and (19) of what His Prophet hath made known to us; (20)
thwarting Iblis the accursed; (21) striving earnestly against the lusts
of the soul and warring them down, and (22) devotion to the one God.”
Now when the Commander of the Faithful heard her words, he bade the
professor put off his clothes and hooded turband; and so did that doctor
and went forth, beaten and confounded, from the Caliph’s presence.
Thereupon another man stood up and said to her, “O damsel, hear a few
questions from me.” Quoth she, “Say on;” and he asked, “What are the
conditions of purchase by advance?” whereto she answered, “That the
price be fixed, the kind be fixed and the period of delivery be fixed
and known.” (¿) “What are the Koranic and the traditional canons of
eating?”—The confession that Allah Almighty provideth the eater and
giveth him meat and drink, with thanksgiving to Him therefor. (¿) “What
is thanksgiving?”—The use by the creature of that which the Creator
vouchsafeth to him, according as it was created for the creature. (¿)
“What are the traditional canons of eating?”—The Bismillah[334] and
washing both hands; sitting on the left of the hind part; eating with
three fingers, and eating of that which hath been duly masticated.[335]
(¿) “What are good manners in eating?”—Taking small mouthfuls and
looking little at one’s table-companion.——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Forty-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
had answered concerning good manners in eating, the doctor who was
trying her, rejoined, “Thou hast replied aright. Now tell me what are
the stays of the heart and their supports?”[336]—The stays and supports
both number three; (1) holding fast to the Faith, the support whereof is
the shunning of infidelity; (2) holding fast to the Traditional Law, and
its support the shunning of innovation; and (3) holding fast to
obedience, and its support the shunning of disobedience. (¿) “What are
the conditions of Wuzu?”—(1) being a Moslem; (2) discernment of good and
evil; (3) purity of the water, and (4) absence of material or religious
impediments. (¿) “What is belief?”—It is divided into nine parts, (1)
belief in the One worshipped; (2) belief in the condition of slavery of
the worshipper; (3) belief in the personality of the Deity; (4) belief
in the Two Handfuls;[337] (5) belief in Providence which allotteth to
man his lot; (6) belief in the Abrogating and (7) in the Abrogated; (8)
belief in Allah, His angels and apostles; and (9) in fore-ordained Fate,
general and individual, its good and ill, its sweet and bitter. (¿)
“What three things do away other three?”—It is told of Sufyán
al-Saurí[338] that he said, “Three things do away with other three.
Making light of the pious doth away the future life, making light of
Kings doth away this life, and, making light of expenditure doth away
wealth.” (¿) “What are the keys of the heavens, and how many gates have
they?”—Quoth Almighty Allah, “And the heaven shall be opened and be full
of portals;”[339] and quoth he whom Allah bless and preserve!, “None
knoweth the number of the gates of heavens, save He who created the
heavens, and there is no son of Adam but hath two gates allotted to him
in the heavens, one whereby his daily bread descendeth and another
wherethrough his works ascend. The first gate is not closed, save when
his term of life cometh to an end, nor the gate of works, good and evil,
till his soul ascend for judgment.” (¿) “Tell me of a thing and a half
thing and a no-thing.”—The thing is the Moslem; the half thing the
hypocrite,[340] and the no-thing the miscreant. (¿) “Tell me of various
kinds of hearts.”—There is the whole heart, the sick heart, the contrite
heart, the vowed heart and the enlightened heart. Now the whole heart is
that of Abraham, the Friend of Allah; the sick heart is that of the
Unbeliever in Al-Islam; the contrite heart is that of the pious who fear
the Lord; the vowed heart is that of our Lord Mohammed (whom Allah bless
and keep!) and the illuminated heart is that of his followers.
Furthermore, the hearts of learned Olema are of three kinds, the heart
which is in love with this world; the heart which loveth the next world,
and the heart which loveth its Lord; and it is said that hearts are
three, the suspended, that of the infidel; the non-existent, that of the
hypocrite; and the constant, that of the True-believer. Moreover, it is
said that the firm heart is of three kinds, viz., the heart dilated with
light and faith, the heart wounded with fear of estrangement and the
heart which feareth to be forsaken of its Supreme Friend.——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Forty-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the second
doctor declared, “Thou hast said well,” quoth she to the Caliph, “O
Commander of the Faithful, he hath questioned me, till he is weary, and
now I will ask of him two questions. If he answer them both, it is well;
and if not, I will take his clothes and he shall wend in peace.” Quoth
the doctor, “Ask me what thou wilt,” and she said, “What sayest thou
religion is?” Answered he, “Religion is confession of Faith with the
tongue and conviction with the heart and correspondent action with the
members. He (upon whom be blessings and peace!) hath said:—The believer
is not perfect in belief, except he perfect himself in five qualities,
namely, trust in Allah,[341] committal of his affair to Allah,
submission to the commands of Allah, acquiescence in the decrees of
Allah; and that all he doth be done for sake of Allah; so is he of those
who are acceptable to the Deity, and who give to Him and withhold for
Him; and such man is perfect in belief.” Then said she, “What is the
Divine ordinance of ordinances and the ordinance which is the initiator
of all ordinances and that of which all others stand in need and that
which comprehendeth all others; and what is the traditional ordinance
that entereth into the Koranic, and the prophetic practice whereby the
Divine is completed?” But he was silent and made no reply; whereupon the
Caliph bade her expound and ordered him to doff his clothes and give
them to her. Said she, “O doctor, the Koranic ordinance of ordinances is
the knowledge of Almighty Allah; that, which is the initiative of all
others, is the testifying there is no god but _the_ God and Mohammed is
the Apostle of God; that, of which all others have need, is the
Wuzu-ablution; that, which compriseth all others, is the Ghusl-ablution
from defilement[342]: the Traditional ordinance that entereth into the
Koranic, is the separation of the fingers and the thick beard;[343] and
that, wherewith all Koranic ordinances are completed, is
circumcision.”[344] Therewith was made manifest the defeat of the
doctor, who rose to his feet and said, “I call Allah to witness, O
Commander of the Faithful, that this damsel is more learned than I in
theology and what pertaineth to the Law.” So saying, he put off his
clothes and went away ignominiously worsted. Then she turned to the rest
of the learned men present and said, “O masters, which of you is the
Koranist, the reader and reciter of the Koran, versed in the seven
readings and in syntax and in lexicography?” Thereupon a professor arose
and, seating himself before her, said, “Hast thou read the Book of
Almighty Allah and made thyself thoroughly acquainted with its signs,
that is its verses, and its abrogating parts and abrogated portions, its
unequivocal commands and its ambiguous; and the difference of its
revelations, Meccan and Medinan? Dost thou understand its interpretation
and hast thou studied it, according to the various traditions and
origins?” “Yes,” answered she; and he said, “What then is the number of
its chapters, how many are the decades and versets, how many words and
how many letters and how many acts of prostration and how many prophets
and how many chapters are Medinan and how many are Meccan and how many
birds are mentioned in it?” Replied she, “O my lord, its chapters are an
hundred and fourteen, whereof seventy were revealed at Meccah and
forty-four at Al-Medinah; and it containeth six hundred and twenty-one
decades; six thousand three hundred and thirty-six versets;[345]
seventy-nine thousand four hundred and thirty-nine words and three
hundred and twenty-three thousand and six hundred and seventy letters;
and to the reader thereof, for every letter, are given ten benefits. The
acts of prostration it compriseth are fourteen.”——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now When it Was the Four Hundred and Forty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the professor
of Koranic exegesis questioned the damsel, she continued, “As regards
the Prophets named in the Book there be five-and-twenty, to wit, Adam,
Noah,[346] Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Lot, Elisha, Jonah,
Salih,[347] or Heber, Húd,[348] Shua’yb or Jethro,[349] David, Solomon,
Zú’l-kafl or Joshua, Idrís, Elias, Yahyá or John the Baptist, Zacharias,
Job, Moses, Aaron, Jesus and Mohammed,[350] the peace of Allah and His
blessing be on them all! Moreover, nine flying things are mentioned in
the Koran, namely, the gnat, the bee, the fly, the ant, the hoopoe, the
crow, the locust, the swallow and the bird of Jesus[351] (on whom be
peace!), to wit, the bat.” (¿) “Which is the most excellent chapter of
the Koran?”—That of The Cow.[352] (¿) “Which is the most magnificent
verse?”—That of The Throne; it hath fifty words, bearing in each fifty
blessings. (¿) “What sign or verse hath in it nine signs or
wonders?”—That in which quoth Allah Almighty, “Verily, in the creation
of the Heaven and the Earth; and in the vicissitude of night, and day;
and in the ship which saileth through the sea laden with what is
profitable for mankind; and in the rain-water which God sendeth down
from Heaven, quickening thereby the dead ground and replenishing the
same with all sorts of cattle; and in the change of winds and in the
clouds that are compelled to do service between the Heaven and the
Earth;[353]—are signs to people of understanding.” (¿) “Which verse is
the most just?”—That in which Allah saith, “Verily, Allah enjoineth
justice and the doing of good, and the giving unto kindred what shall be
necessary; and He forbiddeth wickedness and iniquity and
oppression.”[354] (¿) “Which is the most greedy?”—That in which quoth
Allah, “Is it that every man of them greedeth to enter the Garden of
Delight?”[355] (¿) “Which is the most hopeful?”—That in which quoth
Almighty Allah, “Say: ‘O my servants who have transgressed against your
own souls, despair not of the mercy of Allah; seeing, that Allah
forgiveth all sins; aye Gracious, Merciful is He.’”[356] (¿) “By what
school of intonation dost thou read?”—By that of the people of Paradise,
to wit, the version of Náf’i. (¿) “In which verse doth Allah make
prophets lie?”[357]—In that wherein He saith, “They (the brothers of
Joseph) brought his inner garment stained with false blood.”[358] (¿)
“In which doth He make unbelievers speak the truth?”—In that wherein He
saith, “The Jews say, ‘The Christians are grounded on nothing,’ and the
Christians say, ‘The Jews are grounded on nothing’; and yet they both
read the Scriptures;”[359] and, so saying, all say sooth. (¿) “In which
doth God speak in his own person?”—In that in which he saith, “I have
not created Genii and men for any other end than that they should serve
me.”[360] (¿) “In which verse do the angels speak?”—In that which saith,
“But we celebrate Thy praise and extol Thy holiness.”[361] (¿) “What
sayest thou of the formula:—I seek refuge with Allah from Satan the
Stoned?”—It is obligatory by commandment of Allah on all before reading
the Koran, as appeareth by His saying, “When thou readest the Koran,
seek refuge with Allah from Satan the Stoned.”[362] (¿) “What signify
the words ‘seeking refuge’[363] and what are the variants of the
formula?”—Some say, “I take refuge with Allah the All-hearing and
All-knowing,” and others, “With Allah the Strong;” but the best is that
whereof the Sublime Koran speaketh and the Traditions perpetuate. And he
(whom Allah bless and keep!) was used to ejaculate, “I seek refuge with
Allah from Satan the Stoned.” And quoth a Tradition, reported by Naf’i
on the authority of his adopted father, “The apostle of Allah, was wont
when he rose in the night to pray, to say aloud, Allaho Akbar; God is
Most Great, with all Majesty! Praise be to Allah abundantly! Glory to
Allah morn and even be!” Then would he say, “I seek refuge with Allah
from Satan the Stoned and from the delusions of the Devils and their
evil suggestions.” And it is told of Ibn Abbas[364] (of whom Allah
accept!) that he said, “The first time Gabriel came down to the Prophet
with revelation he taught him the ‘seeking refuge,’ saying:—O Mohammed,
say, I seek refuge with Allah the All-hearing and All-knowing; then
say:—In the name of Allah the Compassionating, the Compassionate! Read,
in the name of thy Lord who created;—created man of blood-clots.”[365]
Now when the Koranist heard her words he marvelled at her expressions,
her eloquence, her learning, her excellence, and said, “O damsel, what
sayst thou of the verse “In the name of Allah, the Compassionating, the
Compassionate? Is it one of the verses of the Koran?””—Yes; it is a
verset of “The Ant”[366] occurring also at the head of the first and
between every two following chapters; and there is much difference of
opinion, respecting this, among the learned.——And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now When it Was the Four Hundred and Forty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
had told the professor concerning the difference of opinion among the
learned touching the ‘Basmalah,’ he said, “Thou hast replied aright: now
tell me why is not the formula written at the head of the chapter of
Immunity[367]?”; and she answered, “When this chapter was revealed from
on high for the dissolution of the alliance between the Prophet and the
idolaters, He (whom Allah bless and preserve!) sent Ali[368] ibn Abí
Tálib (whose face Allah honour!) therewith, and he read the chapter to
them, but did not read the Basmalah.”[369] (¿) “What of the excellence
of the formula and its blessing?”—It is told of the Prophet that he
said, “Never is the Basmalah pronounced over aught, but there is a
blessing in it;” and it is reported, on authority of Him (whom Allah
bless and preserve!) that the Lord of Glory swore by His glory that
never should the Basmalah be pronounced over a sick person, but he
should be healed of his sickness. Moreover, it is said that, when Allah
created the empyrean, it was agitated with an exceeding agitation; but
He wrote on it, ‘Bismillah’ and its agitation subsided. When the formula
first descended from heaven to the Prophet, he said, “I am safe from
three things, earthquake and metamorphosis and drowning;” and indeed its
boons are great and its blessings too many to enumerate. It is told of
Allah’s Apostle that he said, “There will be brought on the Judgment-day
a man with whom He shall reckon and finding no good deed to his account,
shall order him to the Fire; but the man will cry:—O my God, Thou hast
not dealt justly by me! Then shall Allah (to whom be honour and glory!)
say, How so? and the man shall answer, O Lord, for that Thou callest
Thyself the Compassionating, the Compassionate, yet wilt Thou punish me
with the Fire! And Allah (magnified be His Majesty!) shall reply, I did
indeed name myself the Compassionating, the Compassionate. Carry My
servant to Paradise, of My mercy, for I am the most Merciful of the
mercifuls!” (¿) “What was the origin of the use of the Basmalah?”—When
Allah sent down from Heaven the Koran, they wrote, “In Thy name, O my
God!”; when Allah revealed the words, “Say: Call upon Allah, or call
upon the Compassionating, what days ye pray, for hath He the most
excellent names,”[370] they wrote, “In the name of Allah, the
Compassionating, the Compassionate;” and, when He revealed the words,
“Your God is one God, there is no God but He, the Compassionating, the
Compassionate,”[371] they wrote, “In the name of Allah, the
Compassionating, the Compassionate!” Now when the Koranist heard her
reply, he hung down his head and said to himself, “This be a marvel of
marvels! How hath this slave-girl expounded the origin of the Basmalah?
But, by Allah, needs must I go about with her and haply defeat her.” So
he asked, “Did Allah reveal the Koran all at once or at times manifold?”
She answered, “Gabriel the Faithful (on whom be peace!) descended with
it from the Lord of the Worlds upon His Prophet Mohammed, Prince of the
Apostles and Seal of the Prophets, by detached versets; bidding and
forbidding, covenanting and comminating, and containing advices and
instances in the course of twenty years as occasion called for it.” (¿)
“Which chapter was first revealed?”—According to Ibn Abbas, that
entituled Congealed Blood:[372] and, according to Jábir bin
Abdillah,[373] that called ‘The Covered’ which preceded all others.[374]
(¿) “Which verset was the last revealed?”—That of Usury,[375] and it is
also said, the verse, “When there cometh Allah’s succour and
victory.”[376]——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Forty-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
told the Koranist which was the last verse he said, “Thou hast replied
aright; now tell me the names of the Companions who collected the Koran,
in the lifetime of the Apostle of Allah.” And she answered, “They were
four, Ubay ibn Ka’ab, Zayd ibn Sábit, Abú Obaydah ‘Aamir bin Jarráh, and
Othmán bin Affán,[377] (Allah accept of them one and all!)” (¿) “Who are
the readers, from whom the accepted reading of the Koran is taken?”—They
number four, Abdallah bin Mas’úd, Ubay bin Ka’ab, Ma’az bin Jabal and
Sálim bin Abdillah. (¿) “What sayest thou of the words of the Most High,
‘That which is sacrificed to stones’”?[378]—The stones are idols, which
are set up and worshipped, instead of Allah the Most High, and from this
we seek refuge with Allah. (¿) “What sayest thou of the words of the
Most High, Thou knowest what is in my soul, and I know not what is in
Thy soul”?[379]—They mean, “Thou knowest the truth of me and what is in
me, and I know not what is in Thee; and the proof of this are His
words,[380] ‘Thou art He who wottest the hidden things’”; and it is
said, also, “Thou knowest my essence, but I know not Thine essence.” (¿)
“What sayst thou of the words of the Most High, ‘O true believers,
forbid not yourselves the good things which Allah hath allowed
you?’”[381]—My Shaykh (on whom Allah have mercy!) told me that the
Companion Al-Zahhák related:—There was a people of the True-believers
who said, “We will dock our members masculine and don sackcloth;”
whereupon this verse was revealed. But Al-Kutádah declareth that it was
revealed on account of sundry Companions of the Apostle of Allah,
namely, Ali ibn Abí Tálib and Othmán bin Musa’ab and others, who said,
“We will geld ourselves and don hair cloth and make us monks.” (¿) “What
sayest thou of the words of the Most Highest, ‘And Allah took Abraham
for His friend’”?[382]—The friend of Allah is the needy, the poor, and
(according to another saying) he is the lover, he who is detached from
the world in the love of Allah Almighty and in whose attachment there is
no falling away. Now when the Koranist[383] saw her pass on in speech
with the passage of the clouds and that she stayed not in reply, he rose
to his feet and said, “I take Allah to witness, O Commander of the
Faithful, that this damsel is more learned than I in Koranic exegesis
and what pertaineth thereto.” Then said she, “I will ask thee one
question, which if thou answer it is well; but if thou answer not, I
will strip off thy clothes.” Quoth the Commander of the Faithful, “Ask
on,” and she enquired, “Which verset of the Koran hath in it
three-and-twenty Káfs, which sixteen Míms, which an hundred and forty
‘Ayns[384] and which section[385] lacketh the formula, ‘To Whom belong
glory and glorification and majesty[386]?’” The Koranist could not
reply, and she said to him, “Put off thy clothes.” So he doffed them,
and she continued, “O Commander of the Faithful, the verset of the
sixteen Mims is in the chapter Húd and is the saying of the Most High,
‘It was said, O Noah, go down in peace from us, and blessing upon
thee!’;[387] that of the three-and-twenty Kafs is the verse called of
the Faith, in the chapter of The Cow; that of the hundred and forty Ayns
is in the chapter of Al-A’aráf,[388] where the Lord saith, ‘And Moses
chose seventy men of his tribe to attend our appointed time;[389] to
each man a pair of eyes.’[390] And the lesson, which lacketh the
formula, ‘To Whom be glory and glorification,’ is that which comprises
the chapters, The Hour draweth nigh and the Moon shall be cloven in
twain[391]; The Compassionate and The Event.”[392] Thereupon the
professor departed in confusion.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Forty-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
defeated the Koranist and took off his clothes and sent him away
confused, then came forward the skilled physician and said to her, “We
are free of theology and come now to physiology. Tell me, therefore, how
is man made; how many veins, bones and vertebræ are there in his body;
which is the first and chief vein and why Adam was named Adam?” She
replied, “Adam was called Adam, because of his _udmah_, that is, the
wheaten colour of his complexion and also (it is said) because he was
created of the _adim_ of the earth, that is to say, of the surface-soil.
His breast was made of the earth of the Ka’abah, his head of earth from
the East and his legs of earth from the West. There were created for him
seven doors in his head, viz., the eyes, the ears, the nostrils and the
mouth, and two passages, before and behind. The eyes were made the seat
of the sight-sense, the ears the seat of the hearing-sense, the nostrils
the seat of the smell-sense, the mouth the seat of the taste-sense and
the tongue to utter what is in the heart of man.[393] Now Adam was made
of a compound of the four elements, which be water, earth, fire and air.
The yellow bile is the humour of fire, being hot-dry; the black bile
that of earth, being cold-dry; the phlegm that of water, being
cold-moist, and the blood that of air, being hot-moist.[394] There were
made in man three hundred and sixty veins, two hundred and forty-nine
bones, and three souls[395] or spirits, the animal, the rational and the
natural, to each of which is allotted its proper function. Moreover,
Allah made him a heart and spleen and lungs and six intestines and a
liver and two kidneys and buttocks and brain and bones and skin and five
senses; hearing, seeing, smell, taste, touch. The heart He set on the
left side of the breast and made the stomach the guide and governor
thereof. He appointed the lungs for a fan to the heart and stablished
the liver on the right side, opposite thereto. Moreover, He made,
besides this, the diaphragm and the viscera and set up the bones of the
breast and latticed them with the ribs.” (¿) “How many ventricles are
there in a man’s head?”—Three, which contain five faculties, styled the
intrinsic senses, to wit, common sense, imagination, the thinking
faculty, perception and memory. (¿) “Describe to me the configuration of
the bones.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

          Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fiftieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the physicist
said to her, “Describe to me the configuration of the bones,” she
replied, “Man’s frame consists of two hundred and forty bones, which are
divided into three parts, the head, the trunk and the extremities. The
head is divided into calvarium and face. The skull is constructed of
eight bones, and to it are attached the four osselets of the ear. The
face is furnished with an upper jaw of eleven bones and a lower jaw of
one; and to these are added the teeth two-and-thirty in number, and the
os hyoides.[396] The trunk is divided into spinal column, breast and
basin. The spinal column is made up of four-and-twenty bones, called
Fikár or vertebræ; the breast, of the breast-bone and the ribs, which
are four-and-twenty in number, twelve on each side; and the basin of the
hips, the sacrum[397] and the os coccygis. The extremities are divided
into upper and lower, arms and legs. The arms are again divided firstly
into shoulder, comprising shoulder blades and collar bone; secondly into
the upper arm which is one bone; thirdly into fore-arm, composed of two
bones, the radius and the ulna, and fourthly into the hand, consisting
of the wrist, the metacarpus of five and the fingers, which number five,
of three bones each, called the phalanges, except the thumb, which hath
but two. The lower extremities are divided, firstly into thigh, which is
one bone secondly into leg, composed of three bones, the tibia, the
fibula and the patella, and thirdly into the foot, divided, like the
hand, into tarsus, metatarsus and toes; and is composed of seven bones,
ranged in two rows, two in one and five in the other; and the metatarsus
is composed of five bones and the toes number five, each of three
phalanges except the big toe which hath only two.” (¿) “Which is the
root of the veins?”—The aorta, from which they ramify, and they are
many, none knoweth the tale of them save He who created them; but I
repeat, it is said that they number three hundred and sixty.[398]
Moreover, Allah hath appointed the tongue as interpreter for the
thought, the eyes to serve as lanterns, the nostrils to smell with, and
the hands for prehensors. The liver is the seat of pity, the spleen of
laughter[399] and the kidneys of craft; the lungs are ventilators, the
stomach the store-house and the heart the prop and pillar of the body.
When the heart is sound, the whole body is sound, and when the heart is
corrupt, the whole body is corrupt. (¿) “What are the outward signs and
symptoms evidencing disease in the members of the body, both external
and internal?”—A physician, who is a man of understanding, looketh into
the state of the body and is guided by the feel of the hands,[400]
according as they are firm or flabby, hot or cool, moist or dry.
Internal disorders are also indicated by external symptoms, such as
yellowness of the white of the eyes, which denoteth jaundice, and
bending of the back, which denoteth disease of the lungs.——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifty-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
had described to the doctor the outer signs and symptoms quoth he, “Thou
hast replied aright! now what are the internal symptoms of disease?”—The
science of the diagnosis of disease by internal symptoms is founded upon
six canons, (1) the patient’s actions; (2) what is evacuated from his
body; (3) the nature of the pain and (4) the site thereof; (5) swelling
and (6) the effluvia given off his person. (¿) “How cometh hurt to the
head?”—By the ingestion of food upon food, before the first be digested,
and by fullness upon fullness; this it is that wasteth peoples. He who
would live long, let him be early with the morning-meal and not late
with the evening-meal; let him be sparing of commerce with women and
chary of such depletory measures as cupping and blood-letting; and let
him make of his belly three parts, one for food, one for drink and the
third for air; for that a man’s intestines are eighteen spans in length
and it befitteth that he appoint six for meat, six for drink, and six
for breath. If he walk, let him go gently; it will be wholesomer for him
and better for his body and more in accordance with the saying of the
Almighty, “Walk not proudly on the earth.”[401] (¿) “What are the
symptoms of yellow bile and what is to be feared therefrom?”—The
symptoms are sallow complexion and bitter taste in the mouth with
dryness; failure of the appetite, venereal and other, and rapid pulse;
and the patient hath to fear high fever and delirium and eruptions and
jaundice and tumour and ulcers of the bowels and excessive thirst. (¿)
“What are the symptoms of black bile and what hath the patient to fear
from it, an it get the mastery of the body?”—The symptoms are false
appetite and great mental disquiet and cark and care; and it behoveth
that it be evacuated, else it will generate melancholia[402] and leprosy
and cancer and disease of the spleen and ulceration of the bowels. (¿)
“Into how many branches is the art of medicine divided?”—Into two: the
art of diagnosing diseases and that of restoring the diseased body to
health. (¿) “When is the drinking of medicine more efficacious than
other-when?”—When the sap runs in the wood and the grape thickens in the
cluster and the two auspicious planets, Jupiter and Venus, are in the
ascendant; then setteth in the proper season for drinking of drugs and
doing away of disease. (¿) “What time is it, when, if a man drink water
from a new vessel, the drink is sweeter and lighter or more digestible
to him than at another time, and there ascendeth to him a pleasant
fragrance and a penetrating?”——When he waiteth awhile after eating, as
quoth the poet:—

 Drink not upon thy food in haste but wait awhile; ✿ Else thou with
    halter shalt thy frame to sickness lead:
 And patient bear a little thirst from food, then drink; ✿ And thus, O
    brother, haply thou shalt win thy need.[403]

(¿) “What food is it that giveth not rise to ailments?”—That which is
not eaten but after hunger, and when it is eaten, the ribs are not
filled with it, even as saith Jálínús or Galen the physician, “Whoso
will take in food, let him go slowly and he shall not go wrongly.” And
to conclude with His saying (on whom be blessing and peace!), “The
stomach is the house of disease, and diet is the head of healing; for
the origin of all sickness is indigestion, that is to say, corruption of
the meat”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifty-second Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
damsel said to the doctor, “The stomach is the house of disease and diet
is the head of healing; for the origin of all sickness is indigestion,
that is to say, corruption of the meat in the stomach;” he rejoined,
“Thou hast replied aright! what sayest thou of the Hammam?”—Let not the
full man enter it. Quoth the Prophet, “The bath is the blessing of the
house, for that it cleanseth the body and calleth to mind the Fire.” (¿)
“What Hammams are best for bathing in?”—Those whose waters are sweet and
whose space is ample and which are kept well aired; their atmosphere
representing the four seasons—autumn and summer and winter and spring.
(¿) “What kind of food is the most profitable?”—That which women make
and which hath not cost overmuch trouble and which is readily digested.
The most excellent of food is brewis[404] or bread sopped in broth;
according to the saying of the Prophet, “Brewis excelleth other food,
even as Ayishah excelleth other women.” (¿) “What kind of kitchen, or
seasoning, is most profitable?”—“Flesh meat” (quoth the Prophet) “is the
most excellent of kitchen; for that it is the delight of this world and
the next world.” (¿) “What kind of meat is the most profitable?”—Mutton;
but jerked meat is to be avoided, for there is no profit in it. (¿)
“What of fruits?”—Eat them in their prime and quit them when their
season is past. (¿) “What sayest thou of drinking water?”—Drink it not
in large quantities nor swallow it by gulps, or it will give thee
head-ache and cause divers kinds of harm; neither drink it immediately
after leaving the Hammam nor after carnal copulation or eating (except
it be after the lapse of fifteen minutes for a young man and forty for
an old man), nor after waking from sleep. (¿) “What of drinking
fermented liquors?”—Doth not the prohibition suffice thee in the Book of
Almighty Allah, where He saith, “Verily, wine and lots and images, and
the divining arrows are an abomination, of Satan’s work; therefore avoid
them, that ye may prosper”?[405] And again, “They will ask thee
concerning wine and lots: Answer, ‘In both there is great sin and also
some things of use unto men: but their sinfulness is greater than their
use.’”[406] Hence quoth the poet:—

 O bibber of liquor, art not ashamed ✿ To drink what Allah forbade thee
 Put it far from thee and approach it not; ✿ It holds what Allah forbade
    as bane.

And quoth another to the same purport:—

 I drank the sin till my reason fled: ✿ I’ll drink that reason to loss

As for the advantages that be therein, it disperseth stone and gravel
from the kidneys and strengtheneth the viscera and banisheth care, and
moveth to generosity and preserveth health and digestion; it conserveth
the body, expelleth disease from the joints, purifieth the frame of
corrupt humours, engendereth cheerfulness, gladdeneth the heart of man
and keepeth up the natural heat: it contracteth the bladder, enforceth
the liver and removeth obstructions, reddeneth the cheeks, cleareth away
maggots from the brain and deferreth grey hairs. In short, had not Allah
(to whom be honour and glory!) forbidden it,[407] there were not on the
face of the earth aught fit to stand in its stead. As for gambling by
lots, it is a game of hazard such as dicing not of skill. (¿) “What wine
is best?”—That which is pressed from white grapes and kept eighty days
or more after fermentation: it resembleth not water and indeed there is
nothing on the surface of the earth like unto it. (¿) “What sayest thou
of cupping?”—It is for him who is over full of blood and who hath no
defect therein; and whoso would be cupped, let it be during the wane of
the moon, on a day without cloud, wind or rain and on the seventeenth of
the month. If it fall on a Tuesday, it will be the more efficacious, and
nothing is more salutary for the brain and eyes and for clearing the
intellect than cupping.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
enumerated the benefits of cupping, quoth the doctor, “What is the best
time for cupping?”—One should be cupped ‘on the spittle,’ that is, in
the morning before eating, for this fortifieth the wit and the memory.
It is reported of the Prophet that, when anyone complained to him of a
pain in the head or legs, he would bid him be cupped and after cupping
not eat salt food fasting, for it engendereth scurvy; neither eat sour
things as curded milk[408] immediately after cupping. (¿) “When is
cupping to be avoided?”—On Sabbaths or Saturdays and Wednesdays, and let
him who is cupped on these days blame none but himself. Moreover, one
should not be cupped in very hot weather nor in very cold weather; and
the best season for cupping is springtide. Quoth the doctor, “Now tell
me of carnal copulation.” Hereupon Tawaddud hung her head, for shame and
confusion before the Caliph’s majesty; then said, “By Allah, O Commander
of the Faithful, it is not that I am at fault, but that I am ashamed;
though, indeed, the answer is on the edge of my tongue.” Said the
Caliph; “Speak, O damsel,” whereupon said she, “Copulation hath in it
many and exceeding virtues and praiseworthy qualities, amongst which
are, that it lighteneth a body full of black bile and calmeth the heat
of love and induceth affection and dilateth the heart and dispelleth the
sadness of solitude; and the excess of it is more harmful in summer and
autumn than in spring and winter.” (¿) “What are its good effects?”—It
banisheth trouble and disquiet, calmeth love and wrath and is good for
ulcers, especially in a cold and dry humour; on the other hand excess of
it weakeneth the sight and engendereth pains in the legs and head and
back: and beware, beware of carnal connection with old women, for they
are deadly. Quoth the Imam Ali[409] (whose face Allah honour!), “Four
things kill and ruin the body: entering the Hammam on a full stomach;
eating salt food; copulation on a plethora of blood and lying with an
ailing woman; for she will weaken thy strength and infect thy frame with
sickness; and an old woman is deadly poison.” And quoth one of them,
“Beware of taking an old woman to wife, though she be richer in hoards
than Kárún.”[410] (¿) “What is the best copulation?”—If the woman be
tender of years, comely of shape, fair of face, swelling of breast and
of noble race, she will add to thee strength and health of body; and let
her be even as saith a certain poet describing her:—

 Seeing thy looks wots she what thou desir’st, ✿ By inspiration; wants
    nor word nor sign;
 And, when thou dost behold her rarest grace, ✿ The charms of every
    garden canst decline.

(¿) “At what time is copulation good?”—If by night, after food digested
and if by day, after the morning meal. (¿) “What are the most excellent
fruits?”—Pomegranate and citron. (¿) “Which is the most excellent of
vegetables?”—Endive.[411] (¿) “Which of sweet-scented flowers?”—Rose and
Violet. (¿) “How is the seed of man secreted?”—There is in man a vein
which feedeth all the other veins. Now water is collected from the three
hundred and sixty veins and, in the form of red blood, entereth the left
testicle, where it is decocted, by the heat of temperament inherent in
the son of Adam, into a thick, white liquid, whose odour is as that of
the palm-spathe. (¿) “What flying thing is it that emitteth seed and
menstruateth?”—The flitter-mouse,[412] that is the bat. (¿) “What is
that which, when confined and shut out from the air liveth, and when let
out to smell the air dieth?”—The fish. (¿) “What serpent layeth
eggs?”—The Su’ban or dragon.[413] With this the physician waxed weary
with much questioning, and held his peace, when Tawaddud said to the
Caliph, “O Commander of the Faithful, he hath questioned me till he is
tired out and now I will ask him one question, which if he answer not, I
will take his clothes as lawful prize.”——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifty-fourth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
damsel said to the Commander of the Faithful, “Verily he hath questioned
me till he is tired out, and now I will ask him one question, which if
he answer not I will take his clothes as lawful prize,” the Caliph
cried, “Ask on.” So quoth she to the physician, “What is that thing
which resembleth the earth in roundness, whose resting-place and whose
spine are hidden from men’s eyes; little of price and estimation; narrow
of chest and shackled as to throat though it be nor runaway slave nor
pestilent thief; thrust through and through, though not in fray, and
wounded, though not in fight; time eateth its vigour and water wasteth
it away; now it is beaten without blemish, and then made to serve
without stint; united after separation; submissive, but not to him who
caresseth it; pregnant without child in belly; drooping, yet not leaning
on its side; becoming dirty yet purifying itself; cleaving to its fere,
yet changing; copulating without a yard, wrestling without arms: resting
and taking its ease; bitten, yet not crying out: now more complaisant
than a cup-companion and then more troublesome than summer-heat; leaving
its mate by night and embracing her by day and having its abode in the
corners of the mansions of the noble?” The physician was silent awhile
in perplexity and his colour changed and he bowed his head and made no
reply; whereupon she said to him, “Ho, sir doctor, speak or doff thy
dress.” At this, he rose and said, “O Commander of the Faithful, bear
witness against me that this damsel is more learned than I in medicine
and what else, and that I cannot cope with her.” And he put off his
clothes and fled forth. Quoth the Caliph to Tawaddud, “Ree us thy
riddle,” and she replied, “O Commander of the Faithful, it is the button
and the button-loop.[414]”—Then she undertook the astronomers and said,
“Let him of you who is an astronomer rise and come forward.” So the
astronomer advanced and sat down before her; and, when she saw him, she
laughed and said, “Art thou the astronomer, the mathematician, the
scribe?” “Yes,” answered he. Quoth she, “Ask of what thou wilt; success
resteth with Allah.” So he said, “Tell me of the sun and its rising and
setting?” And she replied:—Know that the sun riseth from the shadows in
the Eastern hemisphere and setteth in the shadows of the Western, and
each hemisphere compriseth one hundred and eighty degrees. Quoth Allah
Almighty, ‘I swear by the Lord of the East and of the West.’[415] And
again, ‘He it is who hath ordained the sun to shine by day, and the moon
for a light by night; and hath appointed her station that ye might know
the number of years and the computation of time.’[416] The moon is
Sultan of the night and the sun Sultan of the day, and they vie with
each other in their courses and follow without overtaking each other.
Quoth Almighty Allah, ‘It is not expedient that the sun overtake the
moon in her course; neither doth the night outstrip the day, but each of
these luminaries moveth in a peculiar orbit.’[417] (¿) “When the day
cometh, what becometh of the night; and what of the day, when the night
cometh?”—He causeth the night to enter in upon the day, and He causeth
the day to enter in upon the night.’[418] (¿) “Enumerate to me the
mansions of the moon?”[419]—They number eight-and-twenty, to wit,
Sharatán, Butayn, Surayá, Dabarán, Hak’ah, Han’ah, Zirá’a, Nasrah, Tarf,
Jabhah, Zubrah, Sarfah, ‘Awwá, Simák, Ghafar, Zubání, Iklíl, Kalb,
Shaulah, Na’am, Baldah, Sa’ad al-Zábih, Sa’ad al-Bul’a, Sa’ad al-Su’úd,
Sa’ad al-Akhbiyah, Fargh the Former and Fargh the Latter; and Risháa.
They are disposed in the order of the letters of the Abjad-hawwaz or
older alphabet,[420] according to their numerical power, and in them are
secret virtues which none knoweth save Allah (extolled and exalted be
He!) and the stablished in science. They are divided among the twelve
Signs of the Zodiac, two mansions and a third of a mansion to each Sign.
Thus Sharatan, Butayn and one-third of Suráyá, belong to Aries, the
other two-thirds of Suráyá, Dabaran and two-thirds of Hak’ah to Taurus,
the other third of Hak’ah, Han’ah and Zira’a to Gemini; Nasrah, Tarf and
a third of Jabhah to Cancer, the other two-thirds of Jabhah, Zubrah and
two-thirds of Sarfah to Leo; the other third of Sarfah, ‘Awwá and Simák
to Virgo; Ghafar, Zubáni and one-third of Iklíl to Libra; the other
two-thirds of Iklil, Kalb and two-thirds of Shaulah to Scorpio; the
other third of Shaulah, Na’áim and Baldah to Sagittarius; Sa’ad
al-Zábih, Sa’ad al-Bul’a and one-third of Sa’ad al-Su’ud to Capricorn,
the other two-thirds of Sa’ad al-Su’úd, Sa’ad al-Akhbiyah and two-thirds
of Fargh the Former to Aquarius, the other third of Fargh the Former,
Fargh the Latter and Risháa to Pisces.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifty-fifth Night,

She said, it hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
enumerated the Mansions and distributed them into their Signs, the
astronomer said, “Thou hast replied aright; now tell me of the planets
and their natures, also of their sojourn in the Zodiacal Signs, their
aspects, auspicious and sinister, their houses, ascendants and
descendants.” She answered, “The sitting is narrow for so large a
matter, but I will say as much as I can. Now the planets number seven;
which are, the Sun, the Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn. The
Sun, hot-dry, sinister in conjunction, favourable in opposition, abideth
thirty days in each Sign. The Moon, cold-moist and favourable of aspect,
tarrieth in each Sign two days and a third of another day. Mercury is of
a mixed nature, favourable in conjunction with the favourable, and
sinister in conjunction with the sinister aspects, and abideth in each
sign seventeen days and a half day. Venus, temperate and favourable,
abideth in each sign five-and-twenty days. Mars is sinister and woneth
in each sign ten months. Jupiter is auspicious and abideth in each sign
a year. Saturn, cold-dry and sinister, tarrieth in each sign thirty
months. The house of the Sun is Leo, her ascendant is Aries, and her
descendant Aquarius. The Moon’s house is Cancer, his ascendant Taurus,
his descendant Scorpio and his sinister aspect Capricorn. Saturn’s house
is Capricorn-Aquarius, his ascendant Libra, his descendant Aries and his
sinister aspects Cancer and Leo. Jupiter’s house is Pisces-Sagittarius,
his ascendant Cancer, his descendant Capricorn and his sinister aspects
Gemini and Leo. Venus’s house is Taurus, her ascendant Pisces, her
descendant Libra, and her sinister aspects Aries and Scorpio. Mercury’s
house is Gemini-Virgo, his ascendant Virgo, his descendant Pisces, and
his sinister aspect Taurus. Mars’s house is Aries-Scorpio, his ascendant
Capricorn, his descendant Cancer and his sinister aspect Libra.” Now
when the astronomer saw her acuteness and comprehensive learning and
heard her fair answers, he bethought him for a sleight to confound her
before the Commander of the Faithful, and said to her, “O damsel, tell
me, will rain fall this month?” At this she bowed her head and pondered
so long, that the Caliph thought her at a loss for an answer and the
astronomer said to her, “Why dost thou not speak?” Quoth she, “I will
not speak except the Commander of the Faithful give me leave.” So the
Caliph laughed and said, “How so?” Cried she, “I would have thee give me
a sword, that I may strike off his head, for he is an Infidel, an
Agnostic, an Atheist.[421]” At this, loud laughed the Caliph and those
about him laughed, and she continued, “O astronomer, there are five
things that none knoweth save Allah Almighty;” and she repeated the
verset; ‘Aye! Allah!—with Him is the knowledge of the hour and He
causeth the rain to descend at His own appointed time—and He knoweth
what is in the wombs of females—but no soul knoweth what it shall have
gotten on the morrow; neither wotteth any soul in what land it shall
die: Verily Allah is knowing, informed of all.’[422] Quoth the
astronomer, “Thou hast said well, and I, by Allah, thought only to try
thee.” Rejoined she, “Know that the almanack-makers have certain signs
and tokens, referring to the planets and constellations relative to the
coming in of the year; and folk have learned something by experience.”
(¿) “What be that?”—Each day hath a planet that ruleth it: so if the
first day in the year fall on First Day (Sunday) that day is the Sun’s
and this portendeth (though Allah alone is All-knowing!) oppression of
kings and sultans and governors and much miasma and lack of rain; and
that people will be in great tumult and the grain-crop will be good,
except lentils, which will perish, and the vines will rot and flax will
be dear and wheat cheap from the beginning of Túbah to the end of
Barmahát.[423] And, in this year there will be much fighting among
kings, and there shall be great plenty of good in this year, but Allah
is All-knowing! (¿) “What if the first day fall on Second Day
(Monday)?”—That day belongeth to the Moon and portendeth righteousness
in administrators and officials; and that it will be a year of much rain
and grain-crops will be good, but linseed will decay and wheat will be
cheap in the month Kiyáhk;[424] also the plague will rage and the sheep
and goats will die, grapes will be plentiful and honey scarce and cotton
cheap; and Allah is omniscient!——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifty-sixth Night,

She said, it hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
ended her notice of Second Day the astronomer said to her “Now tell me
what will occur if New Year’s day fall on Third Day (Tuesday).” She
replied, That is Mars’ day and portendeth death of great men and much
destruction and deluge of blood and dearness of grain; lack of rain and
scarcity of fish, which will anon be in excess and anon fail. Lentils
and honey in this year will be cheap and linseed dear and only barley
will thrive, to the exception of all other cereals: great will be the
fighting among kings and death will be in the blood and there will be
much mortality among asses. (¿) “What if it fall on Fourth Day?”—That is
Mercury’s day and portendeth great tumult among the folk and much enmity
and, though rains be moderate, rotting of some of the green crops; also
that there will be sore mortality among cattle and young children and
much fighting by sea; that wheat will be dear from Barmúdah to
Misra[425] and other grains cheap; thunder and lightning will abound and
honey will be dear, palm-trees will thrive and bear abundantly and flax
and cotton will be plentiful, while radishes and onions will be dear;
but Allah is All-knowing! (¿) “What if it fall on Fifth Day?”—That is
Jupiter’s day and portendeth equity in Wazirs and righteousness in Kazis
and Fakirs and the Ministers of religion; and that good will be
plentiful: rains and fruit and trees and grain will abound, and flax,
cotton, honey, grapes and fish be cheap; and Allah is Omniscient! (¿)
“What if it fall on Meeting Day or Friday?”—That day appertaineth to
Venus and portendeth oppression in the chiefs of the Jinn and talk of
forgery and back-biting; there will be much dew; the autumn crops will
be good in the land and there will be cheapness in one town and not in
another: ungraciousness will be rife by land and sea; linseed will be
dear, also wheat, in Hátúr, but cheap in Amshír; honey will be dear and
grapes and water-melons will rot; and Allah is Omniscient! (¿) “What if
it fall on the Sabbath (Saturday)?”—“That is Saturn’s day and portendeth
the preferment of slaves and Greeks and those in whom there is no good,
neither in their neighbourhood; there will be great drought and dearth;
clouds will abound and death will be rife among the sons of Adam and woe
to the people of Egypt and Syria from the oppression of the Sultan and
failure of blessing upon the green crops and rotting of grain; and Allah
is All-knowing!”[426] Now with this, the astronomer hung his head very
low, and she said to him, “O astronomer, I will ask thee one question,
which if thou answer not, I will take thy clothes.” “Ask,” replied he.
Quoth she, “Where is Saturn’s dwelling-place?”; and he answered, “In the
seventh heaven.” (¿) “And that of Jupiter?”—In the sixth heaven. (¿)
“And that of Mars?”—In the fifth heaven. (¿) “And that of the Sun?”—In
the fourth heaven. (¿) “And that of Venus?”—In the third heaven. (¿)
“And that of Mercury?”—In the second heaven. (¿) “And that of the
Moon?”—In the first heaven. Quoth she, “Well answered; but I have one
more question to ask thee;” and quoth he, “Ask!” Accordingly she said,
“Now tell me concerning the stars, into how many parts are they
divided.” But he was silent and answered nothing; and she cried to him,
“Put off thy clothes.” So he doffed them and she took them; after which
the Caliph said to her, “Tell us the answer to thy question.” She
replied:—O Commander of the Faithful, the stars are divided into three
parts, whereof one-third is hung in the sky of the earth,[427] as it
were lamps, to give light to the earth, and a part is used to shoot the
demons withal, when they draw near by stealth to listen to the talk in
heaven. Quoth Allah Almighty, ‘Verily, we have dight the sky of the
earth with the adornment of the stars; and have appointed them for
projectiles against every rebellious Satan.’[428] And the third part is
hung in air to illuminate the seas and give light to what is therein.
Quoth the astronomer, “I have one more question to ask, which if she
answer, I will avow myself beaten.” “Say on,” answered she.——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifty-seventh Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the
astronomer said, “Now tell me what four contraries are based upon other
four contraries?” Replied she, “The four qualities of Caloric and
Frigoric, Humidity and Siccity; for of heat Allah created fire, whose
nature is hot-dry; of dryness, earth, which is cold-dry; of cold, water,
which is cold-wet; of moisture, air, which is hot-wet. Moreover, He
created twelve Signs of the Zodiac, Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo,
Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius and Pisces; and
appointed them of the four humours; three fiery, Aries, Leo, and
Sagittarius; three earthy, Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn; three airy,
Gemini, Libra and Aquarius; and three watery, Cancer, Scorpio and
Pisces.” Hereupon the astronomer rose, and saying, “Bear witness against
me that she is more learned than I,” away he went beaten. Then quoth the
Caliph, “Where is the philosopher[429]?”; at which one rose hastily and
came forward and said to Tawaddud, “What is Time and what be its limits,
and its days, and what things bringeth it?” Replied she, “Time is a term
applied to the hours of the night and day, which are but the measures of
the courses of the sun and moon in their several heavens, even as Allah
Almighty telleth us when he saith, ‘A sign to them also is the Night,
from which we strip off the day, and lo! they are plunged in darkness,
and the Sun runneth to her place of rest; this is the ordinance of the
Sublime, the All-knowing.’”[430] (¿) “How cometh unbelief to the son of
Adam?”—It is reported of the Apostle (whom Allah bless and preserve!)
that he said, ‘Unbelief in a man runneth as the blood runneth in his
veins, when he revileth the world and Time and night and the Hour.’ And
again, ‘Let none of you revile Time, for Time is God;’ neither revile
the world, for she saith, May Allah not aid him who revileth me! neither
revile the hour, for, ‘The Hour is surely coming, there is no doubt
thereof’;[431] neither revile the earth, for it is a portent, according
to the saying of the Most High, ‘Out of the ground have we created you,
and into the same will we cause you to return, and we will bring you
forth yet thence another time.’[432] (¿) “What are the five that ate and
drank, yet came not out of loins nor womb?”—Adam and Simeon[433] and
Salih’s she-camel[434] and Ishmael’s ram and the bird that Abu Bakr the
Truth-teller saw in the cave.[435] (¿) “Tell me of five that are in
Paradise and are neither humans, Jinns nor angels?”—Jacob’s wolf and the
Seven Sleepers’ dog and Esdras’s ass and Salih’s camel and Duldul the
mule of the Prophet (upon whom be blessings and peace!). (¿) “What man
prayed a prayer neither on earth nor in heaven?”—Solomon, when he prayed
on his carpet, borne by the wind. (¿) “Ree me this riddle:—A man once
looked at a handmaid during dawn-prayer, and she was unlawful to him;
but, at noonday she became lawful to him: by mid-afternoon, she was
again unlawful, but at sundown, she was lawful to him: at supper time
she was a third time unlawful, but by daybreak, she became once more
lawful to him.”—This was a man who looked at another’s slave-girl in the
morning, and she was then unlawful to him; but at midday he bought her,
and she became lawful to him: at mid-afternoon he freed her, and she
became unlawful to him; but at sundown he married her and she was again
lawful to him. At nightfall he divorced her and she was then a third
time unlawful to him; but, next morning at daybreak, he took her back,
and she became once more lawful to him. (¿) “Tell me what tomb went
about with him that lay buried therein?”—Jonah’s whale, when it had
swallowed him. (¿) “What spot of lowland is it, upon which the sun shone
once, but will never again shine till Judgment-Day?”—The bottom of the
Red Sea, when Moses smote it with his staff, and the sea clave asunder
in twelve places, according to the number of the tribes;[436] then
the sun shone on the bottom and will do so nevermore until
Judgment-Day.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifty-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the philosopher
then addressed the damsel saying, “What was the first skirt that trailed
over the face of the earth?” She replied, “That of Hagar, out of shame
before Sarah; and it became a custom among the Arabs.” (¿) “What is that
which breatheth without life?”—Quoth Almighty Allah, ‘By the morning
when it breatheth!’[437] (¿) “Ree me this riddle:—A number of pigeons
came to a high tree and lighted, some on the tree and others under it.
Said those on the tree to those on the ground:—If one of you come up to
us, ye will be a third part of us all in number; and if one of us
descend to you, we shall be like unto you in number. How many pigeons
were there in all?”—Twelve: seven alighted on the tree and five beneath;
and, if one go up, those above would be eight to four; and, if one go
down, both would be six and Allah is all-knowing.[438] With this the
philosopher put off his clothes and fled: whereupon the next contest
took place, for she turned to the Olema present and said, “Which of you
is the rhetorician that can discourse of all arts and sciences?” There
came forward a sage hight Ibrahim bin Siyyár and said to her, “Think me
not like the rest.” Quoth she, “It is the more assured to me that thou
wilt be beaten, for that thou art a boaster; and Allah will help me to
victory over thee, that I may strip thee of thy clothes. So, if thou
sentest one to fetch thee wherewithal to cover thyself, ‘twould be well
for thee.” Cried he, “By Allah, I will assuredly conquer thee and make
thee a byword among the peoples, generation after generation!” Rejoined
she, “Do penance in advance for thy broken oath.” Then he asked, “What
five things did Allah create before he made man?”; and she answered,
“Water and earth and light and darkness and the fruits of the earth.”
(¿) “What did Allah create with the hand of omnipotence?”—The ‘Arsh,
throne of God or the empyreal heaven and the tree Túbá[439] and Adam and
the garden of Eden; these Allah created with the hand of His
omnipotence; but to all other created things He said, “Be,”—and they
were. (¿) “Who is thy father in Al-Islam?”—Mohammed, whom Allah bless
and preserve! (¿) “Who was the father in Al-Islam of Mohammed?”—Abraham,
the Friend of God. (¿) “What is the Faith of Al-Islam?”—The professing
that there is no God but _the_ God and that Mohammed is the apostle of
God. (¿) “What is thy first and thy last?”—My first is man’s seed in the
shape of foul water and my last filthy carrion: the first of me is dust
and the last of me is dust. Quoth the poet:—

 Of dust was I created, and man did I become, ✿ In question ever ready
    and aye fluent in reply,
 Then, I unto the dust return’d, became of it again, ✿ For that, in very
    deed, of dust at first create was I.

He continued, “What thing was it, whose first state was wood and its
last life?”—Moses’ staff,[440] when he cast it on the valley-ground and
it became, by permission of Allah, a writhing serpent. (¿) “What is the
meaning of the word of the Lord, ‘And I have other occasion for
it?’”[441]—He, Moses, was wont to plant his staff in the ground, and it
would flower and fruit and shade him from the heat and from the cold.
Moreover, it would carry him when he was weary, and whilst he slept
guard his sheep from lions and wild beasts. (¿) “What woman was born of
a man alone and what man of a woman alone?”—Eve of Adam and Jesus of
Mary.[442] (¿) “Tell me of the four fires, what fire eateth and
drinketh; what fire eateth but drinketh not; what fire drinketh but
eateth not and what other neither eateth nor drinketh?”—The fire of the
world eateth but drinketh not; the fire which eateth and drinketh is
Hell-fire; the fire of the sun drinketh but eateth not, and the fire of
the moon neither eateth nor drinketh. (¿) “Which is the open door and
which the shut?”—The Traditional Ordinances are the open door, the
Koranic the shut door. (¿) “Of what doth the poet speak, when he saith:—

 And dweller in the tomb whose food is at his head, ✿ When he eateth of
    that meat, of words he waxeth fain:

 He riseth and he walketh and he talketh without tongue; ✿ And returneth
    to the tomb where his kith and kin are lain.
 No living wight is he, yet in honour he abides; ✿ Nor dead yet he
    deserveth that Allah him assain.”

She replied, “The reed-pen.”[443] Quoth he, “What doth the poet refer to
in these verses:—

 Two vests in one; blood flowing easiest wise; ✿ Rosy red ears and mouth
    wide open lies;
 It hath a cock-like form, its belly pecks ✿ And, if you price it, half a
    dirham buys.”

She replied, “The ink-case.” Quoth he, “And in these:—

 Ho say to men of wisdom, wit and lore ✿ To sapient, reverend, clever
 Tell me what was’t you saw that bird bring forth ✿ When wandering
    Arab-land and Ajam o’er?
 No flesh it beareth and it hath no blood, ✿ Nor down nor any feathers
    e’er it wore.
 ‘Tis eaten cooked and eke ‘tis eaten cold; ✿ ‘Tis eaten buried ‘neath
    the flames that roar:
 It showeth two-fold colours, silver white ✿ And yellow brighter than
    pure golden ore:
 ‘Tis not seen living or we count it dead: ✿ So ree my riddle rich in

She replied, “Thou makest longsome the questioning anent an egg worth a
mite.” “And this?:”—

 I waved to and fro and he waved to and fro, ✿ With a motion so pleasant,
    now fast and now slow;
 And at last he sunk down on my bosom of snow; ✿ “Your lover friend?”

—“_No friend, my fan_;”[444] said she. (¿) “How many words did Allah
speak to Moses?”—It is related of the Apostle that he said, “God spoke
to Moses fifteen hundred and fifteen words.” (¿) “Tell me of fourteen
things that speak to the Lord of the Worlds?”—The seven heavens and
the seven earths, when they say, ‘We come obedient to Thy
command.’[445]——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Fifty-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
made the answer, the philosopher continued, “Tell me of Adam and how he
was first created?” and she said, “Allah created Adam of clay: the clay
He made of foam and the foam of the sea, the sea of darkness, darkness
of light, light of a fish, the fish of a rock, the rock of a ruby, the
ruby of water, and the water He created by His Omnipotence according to
His saying (exalted be His name!), ‘His commandment when He willeth
aught, is but to say, BE,—and IT IS.’”[446] (¿) “What is meant by the
poet in these verses:—

 And eater lacking mouth and even maw; ✿ Yet trees and beasts to it are
    daily bread:
 Well fed it thrives and shows a lively life, ✿ But give it water and you
    do it dead?”

“This,” quoth she, “is Fire.” “And in these;” he asked:—

 “Two lovers barred from every joy and bliss, ✿ Who through the livelong
    night embracing lie:
 They guard the folk from all calamities, ✿ But with the rising sun apart
    they fly?”

She answered, “The leaves of a door.” Quoth he, “Tell me of the gates of
Gehenna?” Quoth she, “They are seven in number and their names are
comprised in these two couplets:—

 Jahannam, next Lazá, and third Hatím; ✿ Then count Sa’ír and Sakar eke,
 Sixth comes Jahím and Háwiyah the seventh; ✿ Here are seven Hells in
    four lines briefly told.”

Quoth he “To what doth the poet refer when he saith:—

 She wears a pair of ringlets long let down ✿ Behind her, as she comes
    and goes at speed,
 And eye that never tastes of sleep nor sheds ✿ A tear, for ne’er a drop
    it hath at need;
 That never all its life wore stitch of clothes; ✿ Yet robes mankind in
    every mode of weed?”

Quoth she, “A needle.” (¿) “What is the length and what the breadth of
the bridge Al-Sirát?”—Its length is three thousand years’ journey, a
thousand in descent and a thousand in ascent and a thousand level: it is
sharper than a sword and finer than a hair.——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

          Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixtieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
had described to him Al-Sirat, the philosopher said, “Inform me how many
intercessions with Allah hath the Prophet for each soul?”[447]—Three.
(¿) “Was Abu Bakr the first who embraced Al-Islam?”—Yes. (¿) “Yet Ali
became a Moslem before him?”—Ali came to the Prophet, when he was a boy
of seven years old, for Allah vouchsafed him knowledge of the way of
salvation in his tender youth, so that he never prostrated himself to
idols. Quoth he, “Tell me which is the more excellent, Ali or Abbás?”
Now she knew that, in propounding this question, Ibrahim was laying a
trap for her; for if she said, “Ali is more excellent than Abbas,” she
would lack excuse with the Caliph for undervaluing his ancestor; so she
bowed her head awhile, now reddening, then paling, and lastly said,
“Thou askest me of two excellent men, each having his own excellence.
Let us return to what we were about.” When the Caliph Harun al-Rashid
heard her, he stood up and said, “Thou hast spoken well, by the Lord of
the Ka’abah, O Tawaddud!” Then quoth Ibrahim the rhetorician, “What
meaneth the poet when he saith:—

 Slim-wasted one, whose taste is sweetest-sweet, ✿ Likest a lance whereon
    no head we scan:
 And all the lieges find it work them weal, ✿ Eaten of afternoon in

She answered, “The sugar-cane;” and he said, “Tell me of many things.”
Asked she, “What are they?” and he said, “What is sweeter than honey;
what is sharper than the sword; what is swifter than poison; what is the
delight of a moment and what the contentment of three days; what is the
pleasantest of days; what is the joy of a week; what is that debt the
worst debtor denieth not; what is the prison of the tomb; what is the
joy of the heart; what is the snare of the soul; what is death-in-life;
what is the disease that may not be healed; what is the shame that may
not be wiped off; what is the beast that woneth not in cultivated
fields, but lodgeth in waste places and hateth the sons of Adam and hath
in him somewhat of the make of seven strong and violent beasts?” Quoth
she, “Hear what I shall say in reply; then put off thy clothes, that I
may explain to thee;” and the Caliph said, “Expound, and he shall doff
his clothes.” So she said, “Now that, which is sweeter than honey, is
the love of pious children to their two parents; that, which is sharper
than the sword, is the tongue; that, which is swifter than poison, is
the Envier’s eye; the delight of a moment is carnal copulation and the
contentment of three days is the depilatory for women; the pleasantest
of days is that of profit on merchandise; the joy of a week is the
bride; the debt, which the worst debtor denieth not, is death; the
prison of the tomb is a bad son; the joy of the heart is a woman
obedient to her husband (and it is said also that, when fleshmeat
descendeth upon the heart, it rejoiceth therein); the snare of the soul
is a disobedient slave; death-in-life is poverty; the disease that may
not be healed is an ill-nature, and the shame that may not be wiped away
is an ill daughter; lastly, the beast that woneth not in cultivated
fields, but lodgeth in waste places and hateth the sons of Adam and hath
in him somewhat of the make of seven strong and violent beasts, is the
locust, whose head is as the head of a horse, its neck as the neck of
the bull, its wings as the wings of the vulture, its feet as the feet of
the camel, its tail as the tail of the serpent, its belly as the belly
of the scorpion and its horns as the horns of the gazelle.” The Caliph
was astounded at her quickness and understanding, and said to the
rhetorician, “Doff thy clothes.” So he rose up and cried, “I call all
who are present in this assembly to witness that she is more learned
than I and every other learned man.” And he put off his clothes and gave
them to her, saying, “Take them and may Allah not bless them to thee!”
So the Caliph ordered him fresh clothes and said, “O Tawaddud, there is
one thing left of that for which thou didst engage, namely, chess.” And
he sent for experts of chess and cards[448] and trictrac. The
chess-player sat down before her, and they set the pieces, and he moved
and she moved; but, every move he made she speedily countered,——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixty-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
was playing chess with the expert in presence of the Commander of the
Faithful, Harun al-Rashid, whatever move he made was speedily countered
by her, till she beat him and he found himself checkmated. Quoth he, “I
did but lead thee on, that thou mightest think thyself skilful: but set
up again, and thou shalt see.” So they placed the pieces a second time,
when he said in himself, “Open thine eyes or she will beat thee.” And he
fell to moving no piece, save after calculation, and ceased not to play,
till she said, “Thy King is dead!—Checkmate.” When he saw this he was
confounded at her quickness and understanding; but she laughed and said,
“O professor, I will make a wager with thee on this third game. I will
give thee the queen and the right-hand castle and the left-hand knight;
if thou beat me, take my clothes, and if I beat thee, I will take thy
clothes.” Replied he, “I agree to this;” and they replaced the pieces,
she removing queen, castle and knight.[449] Then said she, “Move, O
master.” So he moved, saying to himself, “I cannot but beat her, with
such odds,” and planned a combination; but, behold, she moved on, little
by little, till she made one of her pawns[450] a queen and pushing up to
him pawns and other pieces, to take off his attention, set one in his
way and tempted him to take it. Accordingly, he took it and she said to
him, “The measure is meted and the loads equally balanced.[451] Eat till
thou art over-full; naught shall be thy ruin, O son of Adam, save thy
greed. Knowest thou not that I did but tempt thee, that I might finesse
thee? See: this is check-mate!” adding, “So doff off thy clothes.” Quoth
he, “Leave me my bag-trousers, so Allah repay thee;” and he swore by
Allah that he would contend with none, so long as Tawaddud abode in the
realm of Baghdad. Then he stripped off his clothes and gave them to her
and went away. Thereupon came the backgammon-player, and she said to
him, “If I beat thee, this day, what wilt thou give me?” Quoth he, “I
will give thee ten suits of brocade of Constantinople, figured with
gold, and ten suits of velvet and a thousand gold pieces; and if I beat
thee, I ask nothing but that thou write me an acknowledgment of my
victory.” Quoth she, “To it, then, and do thy best.” So they played, and
he lost and went away, chattering in Frankish jargon and saying, “By the
bounty of the Commander of the Faithful, there is not her like in all
the regions of the world!” Then the Caliph summoned players on
instruments of music and asked her, “Dost thou know aught of music?”;
when she answered, “Even so!” He bade bring a worn lute, polished by
use, whose owner forlorn and lone was by parting trodden down; and of
which quoth one, describing it:—

 Allah watered a land, and upsprang a tree ✿ Struck root deep down, and
    raised head a-sky:
 The birds o’ersang it when green its wood; ✿ And the Fair o’ersing now
    the wood is dry.

So they brought the lute in a bag of red satin, with tassels of
saffron-coloured silk: and she opened the bag, and took it out and
behold on it was graven:—

 Oft hath a tender bough made lute for maid, ✿ Whose swift sweet lays at
    feast men’s hearts invade:
 She sings; it follows on her song, as though ✿ The Bulbuls[452] taught
    her all the modes she played.

She laid her lute in her lap and with bosom inclining over it, bent to
it with the bending of a mother who suckleth her child; then she
preluded in twelve different modes, till the whole assembly was agitated
with delight, like a waving sea, and she sang the following:—

 Cut short this strangeness, leave unruth of you; ✿ My heart shall love
    you aye, by youth of you!
 Have ruth on one who sighs and weeps and moans, ✿ Pining and yearning
    for the troth of you.

The Caliph was ravished and exclaimed, “Allah bless thee and be merciful
to him who taught thee!”: whereupon she rose and kissed the ground
before him. Then he sent for money and paid her master Abu al-Husn an
hundred thousand gold pieces to her price; after which he said to her,
“O Tawaddud, ask a boon of me!” Replied she, “I ask of thee that thou
restore me to my lord who sold me.” “‘Tis well,” answered the Caliph and
restored her to her master and gave her five thousand dinars for
herself. Moreover, he appointed Abu al-Husn one of his cup-companions
for a permanence,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixty-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Caliph gave
the damsel five thousand dinars for herself and restored her to her
master whom he appointed one of his cup-companions for a permanence and
assigned him a monthly stipend of a thousand dinars so long as he should
live; and he abode with the damsel Tawaddud in all solace and delight of
life. Marvel then, O King, at the eloquence of this damsel and the
hugeness of her learning and understanding and her perfect excellence in
all branches of art and science; and consider the generosity of the
Commander of the Faithful, Harun al-Rashid, in that he gave her master
this money and said to her, “Ask a boon of me;” and she besought him to
restore her to her lord. So he restored her to him and gave her five
thousand dinars for herself and made him one of his boon-companions.
Where is such generosity to be found after the Abbaside Caliphs?—May
Allah Almighty have mercy upon them, one and all! And they tell a tale


Footnote 281:

  Lane (ii. 636) omits this tale, “as it would not only require a volume
  of commentary, but be extremely tiresome to most readers.” Quite true;
  but it is valuable to Oriental Students who are beginning their
  studies, as an excellent compendium of doctrine and practice according
  to the Shafi’í School.

Footnote 282:

  Pronounce Aboo’l-Husn = Father of Beauty, a fancy name.

Footnote 283:

  As in most hot climates so in Egypt the dead are buried at once
  despite the risk of vivisepulture. This seems an instinct with the
  Semitic (Arabian) race _teste_ Abraham, as with the Gypsy. Hence the
  Moslems have invoked religious aid. The Mishkát al-Masábih (i. 387)
  makes Mohammed say, “When any one of you dieth you may not keep him in
  the house but bear him quickly to his grave”; and again, “Be quick in
  raising up the bier: for if the dead have been a good man, it is good
  to bear him gravewards without delay; and if bad, it is frowardness ye
  put from your necks.”

Footnote 284:

  This biting of the hand in Al-Haríri expresses bitterness of
  repentance and he uses more than once the Koranic phrase (chapter
  vii., 148) “Sukita fí aydíhim,” lit. where it (the biting) was fallen
  upon their hands; _i.e._ when it repented them; “sukita” being here
  not a passive verb as it appears, but an impersonal form uncommon in
  Arabic. The action is instinctive, a survival of the days when man was
  a snarling and snapping animal (physically) armed only with claws and

Footnote 285:

  Arab. “‘Alam,” applied to many things, an “old man” of stones (Kákúr),
  a sign post with a rag on the top, etc.

Footnote 286:

  The moon of Ramazan was noticed in Night ix. That of Sha’aban (eighth
  month) begins the fighting month after the conclusion of the Treuga
  Dei in Rajab. See Night ccclxxviii.

Footnote 287:

  These lines have occurred in Night cccxix. I give Mr. Payne’s version
  for variety.

Footnote 288:

  _i.e._ in her prime, at fourteen to fifteen.

Footnote 289:

  _i.e._ pale and yellow.

Footnote 290:

  The word means the wood; but it alludes to a preparation made by
  levigating it on a stone called in India “Sandlásá.” The gruel-like
  stuff is applied with the right hand to the right side of the neck,
  drawing the open fingers from behind forwards so as to leave four
  distinct streaks, then down to the left side, and so on to other parts
  of the body.

Footnote 291:

  Arab. Haykal, the Heb. היכל which included the Porch, the Holy and the
  Holy of Holies. The word is used as νάος in a wider sense by Josephus
  A.J. v. v. 3. In Moslem writings it is applied to a Christian Church
  generally, on account of its images.

Footnote 292:

  These lines having occurred before, I here quote Mr. Payne.

Footnote 293:

  Arab writers often mention the smile of beauty, but rarely, after
  European fashion, the laugh, which they look upon as undignified. A
  Moslem will say “Don’t guffaw (Kahkahah) in that way; leave giggling
  and grinning to monkeys and Christians.” The Spaniards, a grave
  people, remark that Christ never laughed. I would draw the reader’s
  attention to a theory of mine that the open-hearted laugh has the
  sound of the vowels _a_ and _o_; while _e_, _i_, and _u_ belong to
  what may be roughly classed as the rogue order.

Footnote 294:

  _i.e._ gaining the love of another, love.

Footnote 295:

  _i.e._ the abrogated passages and those by which they are abrogated.
  This division is necessary for “inspired volumes,” which always abound
  in contradictions. But the charge of “opportunism” brought against the
  Koran is truly absurd; as if “revelation” could possibly be aught save

Footnote 296:

  Koran iv. 160, the chapter “Women.”

Footnote 297:

  She unveiled being a slave-girl and for sale. If a free woman show her
  face to a Moslem, he breaks out into violent abuse, because the act is
  intended to let him know that he is looked upon as a small boy or an
  eunuch or a Christian—in fact not a man.

Footnote 298:

  Ilah = Heb. El, a most difficult root, meaning strength,
  interposition, God (Numen) “the” (article) “don’t” (do not), etc. etc.

Footnote 299:

  As far as I know Christians are the only worshippers who kneel as if
  their lower legs were cut off and who “join hands” like the captive
  offering his wrists to be bound (dare manus). The posture, however, is
  not so ignoble as that of the Moslem “Sijdah” (prostration) which made
  certain North African tribes reject Al-Islam, saying, “These men show
  their hind parts to heaven.”

Footnote 300:

  _i.e._ saying “I intend (purpose) to pray (for instance) the two-bow
  prayer (ruka’tayn) of the daybreak,” etc.

Footnote 301:

  So called because it prohibits speaking with others till the prayer is

Footnote 302:

  Lit. “any thing opposite;” here used for the Ka’abah towards which men
  turn in prayer; as Guebres face the sun or fire and idolaters their
  images. “Al-Kiblatayn” (= the two Kiblahs) means Meccah and Jerusalem,
  which was faced by Moslems as well as Jews and Christians till
  Mohammed changed the direction. For the occasion of the change see my
  Pilgrimage, ii. 320.

Footnote 303:

  Which includes Tayammum or washing with sand. This is a very cleanly
  practice in a hot dry land and was adopted long before Mohammed.
  Cedrenus tells of baptism with sand being administered to a dying
  traveller in the African desert.

Footnote 304:

  The Koranic order for Wuzú is concise and as usual obscure, giving
  rise to a host of disputes and casuistical questions. Its text runs
  (chapt. v.), “O true believers, when you prepare to pray, wash (Ghusl)
  your faces, and your hands unto the elbows; and rub (Mas-h) your hands
  and your feet unto the ankles; and if ye be unclean by having lain
  with a woman, wash (Ghusl) yourselves all over.” The purifications and
  ceremonious ablutions of the Jews originated this command; and the
  early Christians did very unwisely in not making the bath obligatory.
  St. Paul (Heb. xi. 22) says, “Let us draw near with a true heart ...
  having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies
  washed with clean (or pure) water.” But this did not suffice. Hence
  the Eastern Christian, in hot climates where cleanliness should rank
  before godliness, is distinguished by his dirt which as a holy or
  reverend man he makes still dirtier, and he offers an ugly comparison
  with the Moslem and especially the Hindu. The neglect of commands to
  wash and prohibitions to drink strong waters are the two grand
  physical objections of the Christian code of morality.

Footnote 305:

  Arab. “Istinshák” = snuffing up water from the palm of the right hand
  so as to clean thoroughly the nostrils. This “function” is
  unreasonably neglected in Europe, to the detriment of the mucous
  membrane and the olfactory nerves.

Footnote 306:

  So as to wash between them. The thick beard is combed out with the

Footnote 307:

  Poor human nature! How sad to compare its pretensions with its

Footnote 308:

  Complete ablution is rendered necessary chiefly by the emission of
  semen either in copulation or in nocturnal pollution. The water must
  be pure and not less than a certain quantity, and it must touch every
  part of the skin beginning with the right half of the person and
  ending with the left. Hence a plunge-bath is generally preferred.

Footnote 309:

  Arab. Ta’mím, lit. crowning with turband, or tiara, here = covering,
  _i.e._ wetting.

Footnote 310:

  This practice (saying “I purpose to defer the washing of the feet,”
  etc.) is now somewhat obsolete.

Footnote 311:

  Arabs have a prejudice against the hydropathic treatment of wounds,
  holding that water poisons them: and, as the native produce usually
  contains salt, soda and magnesia, they are justified by many cases. I
  once tried water-bandages in Arabia and failed dismally.

Footnote 312:

  The sick man says his prayers lying in bed, etc., and as he best can.

Footnote 313:

  _i.e._ saying, “And peace be on us and on the worshippers of Allah
  which be pious.”

Footnote 314:

  _i.e._ saying “I seek refuge with Allah from Satan the Stoned.”

Footnote 315:

  Certain parts should be recited aloud (jahr) and others sotto voce
  (with mussitation = Khafi). No mistake must be made in this matter
  where a Moslem cannot err.

Footnote 316:

  Hence an interest of two-and-a-half per cent. is not held to be “Ribá”
  or unlawful gain of money by money, usury.

Footnote 317:

  The meal must be finished before the faster can plainly distinguish
  the white thread from the black thread (Koran ii. 183); some
  understand this literally, others apply it to the dark and silvery
  streak of zodiacal light which appears over the Eastern horizon an
  hour or so before sunrise. The fast then begins and ends with the
  disappearance of the sun. I have noticed its pains and penalties in my
  Pilgrimage, i. 110, etc.

Footnote 318:

  For the “Azán” or call to prayer see Lane, M. E., chapt. xviii. The
  chant, however, differs in every country, and a practical ear will
  know the land by its call.

Footnote 319:

  Arab. “Hadís” or saying of the Apostle.

Footnote 320:

  “Al-I’itikaf” resembles the Christian “retreat;” but the worshipper
  generally retires to a mosque especially in Meccah. The Apostle
  practised it on Jabal Hira and other places.

Footnote 321:

  The word is the Heb. חג Hagg whose primary meaning is circularity of
  form or movement. Hence it applied to religious festivals in which
  dancing round the idol played a prime part; and Lucian of “saltation”
  says, dancing was from the beginning and coeval with the ancient god,
  Love. But man danced with joy before he worshipped, and, when he
  invented a systematic saltation, he made it represent two things, and
  only two things, love and war, in most primitive form, courtship and

Footnote 322:

  Two adjoining ground-waves _in_ Meccah. For these and for the places
  subsequently mentioned the curious will consult my Pilgrimage, iii.
  226, etc.

Footnote 323:

  The ‘Umrah or lesser Pilgrimage, I have noted, is the ceremony
  performed in Meccah at any time out of the pilgrim-season proper,
  _i.e._ between the eighth and tenth days of the twelfth lunar month Zu
  ‘l-Hijjah. It does not entitle the Moslem to be called Hájj (pilgrim)
  or Hájí as Persians and Indians corrupt the word.

Footnote 324:

  I need hardly note that Mohammed borrowed his pilgrimage-practices
  from the pagan Arabs who, centuries before his day, danced around the
  Meccan Ka’abah. Nor can he be blamed for having perpetuated a Gentile
  rite, if indeed it be true that the Ka’abah contained relics of
  Abraham and Ishmael.

Footnote 325:

  On first sighting Meccah. See Night xci.

Footnote 326:

  Arab. Tawáf: the place is called Matáf and the guide Mutawwif
  (Pilgrimage, iii. 193, 205). The seven courses are termed Ashwát.

Footnote 327:

  Stoning the Devil at Mina. Pilgrimage, iii. 282. Hence Satan’s title
  “the Stoned” (lapidated not castrated).

Footnote 328:

  Koran viii. 66; in the chapter entitled “Spoil,” and relating mainly
  to the “day of Al-Bedr.”

Footnote 329:

  Arab. Al-Ikálah = cancelling: Mr. Payne uses the technical term

Footnote 330:

  Freedman of Abdallah, son of the Caliph Omar and noted as a

Footnote 331:

  _i.e._ at a profit: the exchange must be equal—an ordinance intended
  to protect the poor. Arabs have strange prejudices in these matters;
  for instance it disgraces a Badawi to take money for milk.

Footnote 332:

  Arab. Jamá’ah, which in theology means the Heb. Edah (עדה) and the
  Greek ἐκκλησία our “Church,” the congregation of the Faithful under a
  lawful head. Hence the Sunnis call themselves “People of the Sunnat
  and Jamá’at.” In the text it is explained as “Ulfat” or intimacy.

Footnote 333:

  Arab. Al-Khalíl, _i.e._ of Allah = Abraham. Mohammed, following Jewish
  tradition, made Abraham rank second amongst the Prophets, inferior
  only to himself and superior to Hazrat Isa = Jesus. I have noted that
  Ishmael the elder son succeeded his father. He married Da’alah bint
  Muzáz bin Omar, a Jurhamite, and his progeny abandoning Hebrew began
  to speak Arabic (ta’arraba); hence called Muta’arribah or Arabised
  Arabs (Pilgrimage iii. 190). He died at Meccah and was buried with his
  mother in the space North of the Ka’abah called Al-Hijr which our
  writers continue to confuse with the city Al-Hijr (Ibid. 165–66).

Footnote 334:

  This ejaculation, “In the name of Allah” is, I have noted, equivalent
  to “saying grace.” If neglected it is a sin and entails a curse.

Footnote 335:

  The ceremonious posture is sitting upon the shin-bones, not
  tailor-fashion; and “bolting food” is a sign of boorishness.

Footnote 336:

  Arab. “Zidd,” the word is a fair specimen of Arabic ambiguity meaning
  primarily opposite or contrary (as virtue to vice), secondarily an
  enemy or a friend (as being opposite to an enemy).

Footnote 337:

  “The whole earth (shall be) but His handful on the Resurrection day
  and in His right hand shall the Heaven be rolled up (or folded
  together).”—Koran xxxix. 67.

Footnote 338:

  See Night lxxxi.

Footnote 339:

  Koran lxxviii. 19.

Footnote 340:

  Arab. Al-Munáfik, technically meaning one who outwardly professes
  Al-Islam while inwardly hating it. Thus the word is by no means
  synonymous with our “hypocrite,” hypocrisy being the homage vice pays
  to virtue; a homage, I may observe, nowhere rendered more fulsomely
  than among the so-called Anglo-Saxon race.

Footnote 341:

  Arab. “Tawakkul alá ‘llah”: in the imperative the phrase is vulgarly
  used = “Be off!”

Footnote 342:

  _i.e._ ceremonial impurity which is sui generis, a very different
  thing from general dirtiness.

Footnote 343:

  A thick beard is one which does not show the skin; otherwise the
  wearer is a “Kausaj;” in Pers. “Kúseh.” See vol. iii., 246.

Footnote 344:

  Arab. “Al-Khutnah.” Nowhere commanded in the Koran and being only a
  practice of the Prophet, the rite is not indispensable for converts,
  especially the aged and the sick. Our ideas upon the subject are very
  hazy for modern “niceness” allows a “Feast of the Circumcision,” but
  no discussion thereon. Moses (alias Osarsiph) borrowed the rite from
  the Egyptian hierophants who were all thus “purified”; the object
  being to counteract the over-sensibility of the “sixth sense” and to
  harden the _glans_ against abrasions and infection by exposure to air
  and friction against the dress. Almost all African tribes practise it
  but the modes vary and some are exceedingly curious: I shall notice a
  peculiarly barbarous fashion called Al-Salkh (the flaying) still
  practised in the Arabian province Al-Asír (Pilgrimage iii. 80). There
  is a difference too between the Hebrew and the Moslem rite. The Jewish
  operator, after snipping off the foreskin, rips up the prepuce with
  his sharp thumb-nails so that the external cutis does not retract far
  from the internal; and the wound, when healed, shows a narrow ring of
  cicatrice. This ripping is not done by Moslems. They use a stick as a
  probe passed round between glans and prepuce to ascertain the extent
  of the frenum and that there is no abnormal adhesion. The foreskin is
  then drawn forward and fixed by the forceps, a fork of two bamboo
  splints, five or six inches long by a quarter thick, or in some cases
  an iron like our compasses. This is tied tightly over the foreskin so
  as to exclude about an inch and a half of the prepuce above and three
  quarters below. A single stroke of the razor drawn directly downwards
  removes the skin. The slight bleeding is stopped by burnt rags or
  ashes and healed with cerates, pledgets and fumigations. Thus Moslem
  circumcision does not prevent the skin retracting.

Footnote 345:

  Of these 6336 versets only some 200 treat on law, civil and
  ceremonial, fiscal and political, devotional and ceremonial, canonical
  and ecclesiastical.

Footnote 346:

  The learned young woman omitted Ukhnúkh = Enoch, because not in Koran;
  and if she denoted him by “Idrís,” the latter is much out of place.

Footnote 347:

  Some say grandson of Shem (Koran vii. 71).

Footnote 348:

  Koran vii. 63, etc.

Footnote 349:

  Father-in-law of Moses (Koran vii. 83).

Footnote 350:

  Who is the last and greatest of the twenty-five.

Footnote 351:

  See Night ccccxxxviii.

Footnote 352:

  Koran ii., whose 256th Ayah is the far-famed and sublime Throne-verse
  which begins “Allah! there is no god but He, the Living, the Eternal
  One, whom nor slumber nor sleep seizeth on!” The trivial name is taken
  from the last line, “His _throne_ over-stretcheth Heaven and Earth and
  to Him their preservation is no burden for He is the most Highest, the
  Supreme.” The lines are often repeated in prayers and engraved on
  agates, etc., as portable talismans.

Footnote 353:

  Koran ii. 159.

Footnote 354:

  Koran xvi. 92. The verset ends with, “He warneth you, so haply ye may
  be mindful.”

Footnote 355:

  Koran lxx. 38.

Footnote 356:

  Koran xxxix. 54.

Footnote 357:

  The Sunnis hold that the “Anbiyá” (= prophets, or rather announcers of
  Allah’s judgments) were not sinless. But this dogma is branded as most
  irreverent and sinful by the Shi’ahs or Persian “followers of Ali,”
  who make capital out of this blasphemy and declare that if any prophet
  sinned he sinned only against himself.

Footnote 358:

  Koran xii. 18.

Footnote 359:

  Koran ii. 107.

Footnote 360:

  Koran li. 57. He (Allah) does not use the plurale majestatis.

Footnote 361:

  Koran ii. 28.

Footnote 362:

  Koran xvi. 100. Satan is stoned in the Miná or Muná basin (Night
  ccccxlii.) because he tempted Abraham to disobey the command of Allah
  by refusing to sacrifice Ishmael (Pilgrimage iii. 248).

Footnote 363:

  It may also mean “have recourse to God.”

Footnote 364:

  Abdallah ibn Abbas, before noticed, first cousin of Mohammed and the
  most learned of the Companions. See D’Herbelot.

Footnote 365:

  Koran xcvi., “Blood-clots,” 1 and 2. “Read” may mean “peruse the
  revelation” (it was the first Koranic chapter communicated to
  Mohammed), or “recite, preach.”

Footnote 366:

  Koran, xxvii. 30. Mr. Rodwell (p. 1) holds to the old idea that the
  “Basmalah” is of Jewish origin, taught to the Kuraysh by Omayyah, of
  Taif, the poet and Haníf (convert).

Footnote 367:

  Koran ix.: this was the last chapter revealed and the only one
  revealed entire except verse 110.

Footnote 368:

  Ali was despatched from Al-Medinah to Meccah by the Prophet on his own
  slit-eared camel to promulgate this chapter; and meeting the assembly
  at Al-‘Akabah he also acquainted them with four things; (1) No Infidel
  may approach the Meccah temple; (2) naked men must no longer circuit
  the Ka’abah; (3) only Moslems enter Paradise, and (4) public faith
  must be kept.

Footnote 369:

  Dictionaries give the word “Basmalah” (= saying Bismillah); but the
  common pronunciation is “Bismalah.”

Footnote 370:

  Koran xvii. 110, a passage revealed because the Infidels, hearing
  Mohammed calling upon The Compassionate, imagined that Al-Rahmán was
  other deity but Allah. The “names” have two grand divisions, Asmá
  Jalálí, the fiery or terrible attributes, and the Asmá Jamálí (airy,
  watery, earthy or) amiable. Together they form the Asmá al-Husna or
  glorious attributes, and do not include the Ism al-A’azam, the
  ineffable name which is known only to a few.

Footnote 371:

  Koran ii. 158.

Footnote 372:

  Koran xcvi. before noticed.

Footnote 373:

  A man of Al-Medinah, one of the first of Mohammed’s disciples.

Footnote 374:

  Koran lxxiv. 1, etc., supposed to have been addressed by Gabriel to
  Mohammed when in the cave of Hira or Jabal Núr. He returned to his
  wife Khadijah in sore terror at the vision of one sitting on a throne
  between heaven and earth, and bade her cover him up. Whereupon the
  Archangel descended with this text, supposed to be the first revealed.
  Mr. Rodwell (p. 3) renders it, “O thou enwrapped _in thy mantle_!” and
  makes it No. ii. after a Fatrah or silent interval of six months to
  three years.

Footnote 375:

  There are several versets on this subject (chapts. ii. and xxx).

Footnote 376:

  Koran cx. 1.

Footnote 377:

  The third Caliph; the “Writer of the Koran.”

Footnote 378:

  Koran, v. 4. Sale translates “idols.” Mr. Rodwell, “On the blocks (or
  shafts) of stone,” rude altars set by the pagan Arabs before their

Footnote 379:

  Koran, v. 116. The words are put into the mouth of Jesus.

Footnote 380:

  The end of the same verse.

Footnote 381:

  Koran, v. 89. Supposed to have been revealed when certain Moslems
  purposed to practise Christian asceticism, fasting, watching,
  abstaining from women and sleeping on hard beds. I have said Mohammed
  would have “no monkery in Al-Islam,” but human nature willed
  otherwise. Mr. Rodwell prefers “Interdict the healthful viands.”

Footnote 382:

  Koran, iv. 124.

Footnote 383:

  Arab. “Mukri.” “Kári” is one who reads the Koran to pupils; the Mukri
  corrects them. “With the passage of the clouds” = without a moment’s

Footnote 384:

  The twenty-first, twenty-fourth and eighteenth Arabic letters.

Footnote 385:

  Arab. “Hizb.” The Koran is divided into sixty portions, answering to
  “Lessons” for convenience of public worship.

Footnote 386:

  Arab. “Jalálah,” = saying Jalla Jalálu-hu = magnified be His Majesty!,
  or glorified be His Glory.

Footnote 387:

  Koran, xi. 50.

Footnote 388:

  The partition-wall between Heaven and Hell which others call Al-‘Urf
  (in the sing. from the verb meaning he separated or parted). The Jeus
  borrowed from the Guebres the idea of a partition between Heaven and
  Hell and made it so thin that the blessed and damned can speak
  together. There is much dispute about the population of Al-A’aráf, the
  general idea being that they are men who do not deserve reward in
  Heaven or punishment in Hell. But it is not a “Purgatory” or place of
  expiating sins.

Footnote 389:

  Koran, vii. 154.

Footnote 390:

  A play on the word ayn, which means “eye” or the eighteenth letter
  which in olden times had the form of a circle.

Footnote 391:

  From misreading these words comes the absurd popular belief of the
  moon passing up and down Mohammed’s sleeves. George B. Airy (The
  Athenæum, Nov. 29, 1884) justly objects to Sale’s translation “The
  hour of _judgment_ approacheth” and translates “The moon hath been
  dichotomised” a well-known astronomical term when the light portion of
  the moon is defined in a strait line: in other words when it is really
  a half-moon at the first and third quarters of each lunation. Others
  understand, The moon shall be split on the Last Day, the preterite for
  the future in prophetic style. “Koran Moslems” of course understand it

Footnote 392:

  Chapters liv., lv. and lvi.

Footnote 393:

  We should say, _not_ to utter, etc.

Footnote 394:

  These well-known “humours of Hippocrates,” which reappear in the form
  of temperaments of European phrenology, are still the base of Eastern

Footnote 395:

  The doctrine of the three souls will be intelligible to Spiritualists.

Footnote 396:

  Arab. “Al-lámi” = the l-shaped, curved, forked.

Footnote 397:

  Arab. “Usus,” our os sacrum because, being incorruptible, the body
  will be built up thereon for Resurrection-time. Hence Hudibras sings
  (iii. 2).

               The learned Rabbis of the Jews
               Write there’s a bone which they call _leuz_,
               I’ the rump of man, etc.

  It is the Heb. “Uz,” whence older scholars derived _os_. Sale (sect.
  iv.) called it “El Ajb, os coccygis or rump-bone.”

Footnote 398:

  Arab physiologists had difficulties in procuring “subjects”; and
  usually practised dissection on the simiads. Their illustrated books
  are droll; the figures have been copied and recopied till they have
  lost all resemblance to the originals.

Footnote 399:

  The liver and spleen are held to be congealed blood. Hence the

  We are allowed two carrions (_i.e._ with throats uncut) and two
  The fish and the locust, the liver and the spleen.

  (Pilgrimage iii. 92.)

Footnote 400:

  This is perfectly true and yet little known to the general.

Footnote 401:

  Koran xvii. 39.

Footnote 402:

  Arab. “Al-malikhulíya,” proving that the Greeks then pronounced the
  penultimate vowel according to the acute accent—ía; not as we slur it
  over. In old Hebrew we have the transliteration of four Greek words;
  in the languages of Hindostan many scores including names of places;
  and in Latin and Arabic as many hundreds. By a scholar-like comparison
  of these remains we should find little difficulty in establishing the
  true Greek pronunciation since the days of Alexander the Great; and we
  shall prove that it was pronounced according to accent and
  emphatically _not_ quantity. In the next century I presume English
  boys will be taught to pronounce Greek as the Greeks do.

Footnote 403:

  Educated Arabs can quote many a verse bearing upon domestic medicine
  and reminding us of the lines bequeathed to Europe by the School of
  Salerno. Such _e.g._ are:—

        After the noon-meal, sleep, although for moments twain;
        After the night-meal, walk, though but two steps be ta’en;
        And after swiving stale, though but two drops thou drain.

Footnote 404:

  Arab. Sarídah (Tharídah), also called “ghaut” = crumbled bread and
  hashed meat in broth; or bread, milk and meat. The Sarídah of Ghassán,
  cooked with eggs and marrow, was held a dainty dish: hence the
  Prophet’s dictum.

Footnote 405:

  Koran v. 92. “Lots” = games of chance and “images” = statues.

Footnote 406:

  Koran ii. 216. The word “Maysar” which I have rendered “gambling” or
  “gaming” (for such is the modern application of the word), originally
  meant what St. Jerome calls Βελομαντία and explains thereby the verse
  (Ezek. xxi. 22), “The King held in his hand the lot of Jerusalem”
  _i.e._ the arrow whereon the city-name was written. The Arabs use it
  for casting lots with ten azlam or headless arrows (for dice) three
  being blanks and the rest notched from one to seven. They were thrown
  by a “Zárib” or punter and the stake was generally a camel. Amongst so
  excitable a people as the Arabs, this game caused quarrels and
  bloodshed, hence its prohibition: and the theologians, who everywhere
  and at all times delight in burdening human nature, have extended the
  command, which is rather admonitory than prohibitive, to all games of
  chance. Tarafah is supposed to allude to this practice in his

Footnote 407:

  Liberal Moslems observe that the Koranic prohibition is not absolute,
  with threat of Hell for infraction. Yet Mohammed doubtless forbade all
  inebriatives and the occasion of his so doing is well known
  (Pilgrimage ii. 322).

Footnote 408:

  I have noticed this soured milk in Pilgrimage i. 362.

Footnote 409:

  He does not say the “Caliph” or successor of his uncle Mohammed.

Footnote 410:

  The Jewish Korah (Numbers xvi.) fabled by the Koran (xxviii. 76),
  following a Talmudic tradition, to have been a man of immense wealth.
  The notion that lying with an old woman, after the menses have ceased,
  is unwholesome, dates from great antiquity; and the benefits of the
  reverse process were well known to _good_ King David. The faces of
  children who sleep with their grandparents (a bad practice now waxing
  obsolete in England), of a young wife married to an old man and of a
  young man married to an old woman, show a peculiar wizened appearance,
  a look of age overlaying youth which cannot be mistaken.

Footnote 411:

  Arab. “Hindibá” (= endubium): the modern term is Shakuríyah =
  chicorée. I believe it to be very hurtful to the eyes.

Footnote 412:

  Arab. “Khuffásh” and “Watwát”: in Egypt a woman is called “Watwátíyah”
  when the hair of her privities has been removed by applying bats’
  blood. I have often heard of this; but cannot understand how such an
  application can act depilatory.

Footnote 413:

  Dictionaries render the word by “dragon, cockatrice.” The Badawin
  apply it to a variety of serpents mostly large and all considered

Footnote 414:

  Arab. “Zarr wa ‘urwah,” lit. = handle. The button-hole, I have said,
  is a modern invention; Urwah is also applied to the loop-shaped handle
  of the water-skin, for attachment of the Allákah or suspensory thong.

Footnote 415:

  Koran lxx. 40; see also the chapter following, v. 16.

Footnote 416:

  Koran x. 5; the “her” refers to the sun.

Footnote 417:

  Koran xxxvi. 40.

Footnote 418:

  Koran xxii. 60.

Footnote 419:

  Arab. “Manázil:” these are the Hindu Nakshatra; extensively used in
  meteorology even by Europeans unconsciously: thus they will speak of
  the Elephantina-storm without knowing anything of the lunar mansion so
  called. The names in the text are successively Sharatán = two horns of
  the Ram; (2) the Ram’s belly; (3) the Pleiades; (4) Aldebaran; (5)
  three stars in Orion’s head; (6) ditto in Orion’s shoulder; (7) two
  stars above the Twins; (8) Lion’s nose and first summer station; (9)
  Lion’s eye; (10) Lion’s forehead; (11) Lion’s mane; (12) Lion’s heart;
  (13) the Dog, two stars in Virgo; (14) Spica Virginis; (15) φ, ι and κ
  in foot of Virgo; (16) horns of Scorpio; (17) the Crown; (18) heart of
  Scorpio; (19) tail of Scorpio; (20) stars in Pegasus; (21) where no
  constellation appears; (22) the Slaughterer’s luck; (23) Glutton’s
  luck; (24) Luck of Lucks, stars in Aquarius; (25) Luck of Tents, stars
  in Aquarius; (26) the fore-lip or spout of Urn; (27) hind lip of Urn;
  and (28) in navel of Fish’s belly (Batn al-Hút); of these 28 to each
  of the four seasons 7 are allotted.

Footnote 420:

  The Hebrew absey, still used by Moslems in chronograms. For mnemonic
  purposes the 28 letters are distributed into eight words of which the
  first and second are Abjad and Hawwaz. The last six letters in two
  words (Thakhiz and Zuzigh) are Arabian, unknown to the Jews and not
  found in Syriac.

Footnote 421:

  Arab. “Zindík;” properly, one who believes in two gods (the old
  Persian dualism); in books an atheist, _i.e._ one who does not believe
  in a god or gods; and, popularly, a free-thinker who denies the
  existence of a Supreme Being, rejects revelation for the laws of
  Nature imprinted on the heart of man and for humanity in its widest
  sense. Hence he is accused of permitting incestuous marriages and
  other abominations. We should now call him (for want of something
  better) an Agnostic.

Footnote 422:

  Koran xxxi. 34. The words may still be applied to meteorologists
  especially of the scientific school. Even the experienced (as the
  followers of the late Mathieu de la Drôme) reckon far more failures
  than successes. The Koranic passage enumerates five things known only
  to Allah; Judgment-day; rain; sex of child in womb; what shall happen
  to-morrow and where a man shall die.

Footnote 423:

  The fifth and seventh months (January and March) of the Coptic year
  which, being solar, is still used by Arab and Egyptian meteorologists.
  Much information thereon will be found in the “Egyptian Calendar” by
  Mr. Mitchell, Alexandria 1876. It bears the appropriate motto “Anni
  certus modus apud solos semper Ægyptios fuit.” (Macrobius). See also
  Lane M.E., chapt. ix.

Footnote 424:

  Vulg. Kiyák; the fourth month, beginning 9th–10th December. The first
  month is Tút, commencing 10th–11th September.

Footnote 425:

  The 8th and 12th months partly corresponding with April and August:
  Hátúr is the 3rd (November) and Amshír the 6th (February).

Footnote 426:

  Moslems have been compelled to adopt infidel names for the months
  because Mohammed’s Koranic rejection of Nasy or intercalation makes
  their lunar months describe the whole circle of the seasons in a cycle
  of about thirty-three and a half years. Yet they have retained the
  terms which contain the original motive of the denomination. The first
  month is Muharram, the “Holy,” because war was forbidden; it was also
  known as Safar No. 1. The second Safar = “Emptiness,” because during
  the heats citizens left the towns and retired to Táif and other cool
  sites. Rabí’a (first and second) alluded to the spring-pasturages;
  Jumádá (first and second) to the “hardening” of the dry ground and,
  according to some, to the solidification, freezing, of the water in
  the highlands. Rajab (No. 7) = “worshipping,” especially by sacrifice,
  is also known as Al-Asamm the deaf; because being sacred, the rattle
  of arms was unheard. Sha’abán = “collecting,” dispersing, ruining,
  because the tribal wars recommenced: Ramazan (intensely hot) has been
  explained and Shawwál (No. 10.) derives from Shaul (elevating) when
  the he-camels raise their tails in rut. Zú’l-Ka’adah, the sedentary,
  is the rest time of the year, when fighting is forbidden and
  Zu’l-Hijjah explains itself as the pilgrimage-month.

Footnote 427:

  The lowest of the seven.

Footnote 428:

  Koran xxxvii. 5.

Footnote 429:

  Arab. “Faylasúf,” an evident corruption from the Greek. Amongst the
  vulgar it denotes a sceptic, an atheist; much the same a “Frammásún”
  or Freemason. The curious reader will consult the Dabistan, vol. iii.
  chapt. xi. p. 138 _et seq._ “On the Religion of the Wise”
  (philosophi), and, Beaconsfield’s theft from Shaftesbury.

Footnote 430:

  Koran xxxvi. 37–38.

Footnote 431:

  Koran xxii. 7. The Hour _i.e._ of Judgment.

Footnote 432:

  Koran xx. 58. The Midrasch Tanchumah on Exod. vii. gives a similar
  dialogue between Pharaoh and Moses (Rodwell, _in loco_).

Footnote 433:

  Arab. “Sham’ún” or “Shim’ún,” usually applied to Simon Peter (as in
  Acts xv. 14). But the text alludes to Saint Simeon (Luke ii. 25–35).
  See Gospel of Infancy (ii. 8) and especially the Gospel of Nicodemus
  (xii. 3) which makes him a High-priest.

Footnote 434:

  Sálih the Patriarch’s she-camel, miraculously produced from the rock
  in order to convert the Thamúd-tribe (Koran vii).

Footnote 435:

  When Abu Bakr was hiding with Mohammed in a cave on the Hill Al-Saur
  (Thaur or Thúr, Pilgrimage ii. 131) South of Meccah, which must not be
  confounded with the cave on Jabal Hirá now called Jabal Núr on the way
  to Arafat (Pilgrimage iii. 246), the fugitives were protected by a
  bird which built her nest at the entrance (according to another legend
  it was curtained by a spider’s web), whilst another bird (the crow of
  whom I shall presently speak) tried to betray them. The first bird is
  popularly supposed to have been a pigeon, and is referred to by

                   Th’ apostles of this fierce religion
                   Like Mahomet, were ass and widgeon.

  The ass I presume alludes to the marvellous beast Al-Burák which the
  Greeks called Βράχθαν from Βραχ (Euthymius in Pocock, Spec. A.H. p.
  144) and which Indian Moslems picture with human face, ass’s ears,
  equine body and peacock’s wings and tail. The “widgeon” I presume to
  be a mistake or a misprint for pigeon.

Footnote 436:

  The Arabs are not satisfied with the comparative moderation of the
  Hebrew miracle, and have added all manner of absurdities (Pilgrimage
  ii. 288).

Footnote 437:

  Koran lxxxi. 18. Sale translates “by the morning when it appeareth;”
  and the word (tanaffus) will bear this meaning. Mr. Rodwell prefers,
  “By the dawn when it clears away the darkness by its breath.”

Footnote 438:

  As a rule Moslems are absurdly ignorant of arithmetic and
  apparently cannot master it. Hence in Egypt they used Copts for
  calculating-machines and further East Hindús. The mildest
  numerical puzzle, like the above, is sure of success.

Footnote 439:

  The paradisal tree which supplied every want. Mohammed borrowed it
  from the Christians (Rev. xxi. 10–21 and xxii. 1–2) who placed in
  their paradise the Tree of Life which bears twelve sorts of fruits and
  leaves of healing virtue. (See also the 3rd book of Hermas, his
  Similitudes.) The Hebrews borrowed it from the Persians. Amongst the
  Hindus it appears as “Kalpavriksha;” amongst the Scandinavians as
  Yggdrasil. The curious reader will consult Mr. James Fergusson’s
  learned work, “Tree and Serpent Worship,” etc. London, 1873.

Footnote 440:

  Aaron’s Rod becomes amongst Moslems (Koran vii. 110) Moses’ Staff; the
  size being that of a top-mast (Pilgrimage i. 300, 301). In Koran xx.
  18, 19, we find a notice of its uses; and during the Middle Ages it
  reappeared in the Staff of Wamba the Goth (A.D. 672–680): the witch’s
  broomstick was its latest development.

Footnote 441:

  Christ, say the Eutychians, had only one nature the divine; so he was
  crucified in effigy.

Footnote 442:

  Jesus is compared with Adam in the Koran (chapt. iii.): his titles are
  Kalámu ‘llah (word of God) because engendered without a father, and
  Rúhu ‘llah (breath of God) because conceived by Gabriel in the shape
  of a beautiful youth breathing into the Virgin’s vulva. Hence Moslems
  believe in a “miraculous conception” and consequently determine that
  one so conceived was, like Elias and Khizr, not subject to death; they
  also hold him born free from “original sin” (a most sinful
  superstition), a veil being placed before the Virgin and Child against
  the Evil One who could not touch them. He spoke when a babe in cradle;
  he performed miracles of physic; he was taken up to Heaven; he will
  appear as the forerunner of Mohammed on the White Tower of Damascus,
  and finally he will be buried at Al-Medinah. The Jews on the other
  hand speak of him as “that man:” they hold that he was begotten by
  Joseph during the menstrual period and therefore a born magician.
  Moreover he learned the Sham ha-maphrash or Nomen tetragrammaton,
  wrote it on parchment and placed it in an incision in his thigh, which
  closed up on the Name being mentioned (Buxtorf, Lex Talmud 25–41).
  Other details are given in the Toldoth Jesu (Historia Joshuæ
  Nazareni). This note should be read by the eminent English littérateur
  who discovered a fact, well known to Locke and Carlyle, that
  “Mohammedans are Christians.” So they are and something more.

Footnote 443:

  In the Kalamdán, or pen-case, is a little inkstand of metal occupying
  the top of the long, narrow box.

Footnote 444:

  A fair specimen of the riddle known as the “surprise.”

Footnote 445:

  Koran xli. 10.

Footnote 446:

  Koran xxxvi. 82.

Footnote 447:

  Here we enter upon a series of disputed points. The Wahhábis deny the
  intercession of the Apostle (Pilgrimage ii. 76–77). The Shi ahs place
  Ali next in dignity to Mohammed and there is a sect (Ali-Iláhi) which
  believes him to be an Avatar or incarnation of the Deity. For the
  latter the curious reader will consult the “Dabistan,” ii. 451. The
  Koran by its many contradictions seems to show that Mohammed never
  could make up his own mind on the subject, thinking himself at times
  an intercessor and then sharply denying all intercession.

Footnote 448:

  Arab. “Kanjifah” = a pack of cards; corrupted from the Persian
  “Ganjífah.” We know little concerning the date or origin of this game
  in the East, where the packs are quite unlike ours.

Footnote 449:

  It is interesting to compare this account with the pseudo Ovid and
  with Tale clxvi. in Gesta “Of the game of Schaci.” Its Schacarium is
  the chess-board. Rochus (roccus, etc.) is not from the Germ. Rock (a
  coat) but from Rukh (Pers. a hero, a knight-errant); Alphinus (Ital.
  Alfino) is Al-Firzán (Pers. science, wise).

Footnote 450:

  Arab. “Baydak” or “Bayzak”; a corruption of the Persian “Piyádah” = a
  footman, peon, pawn; and proving whence the Arabs derived the game.
  The Persians are the readiest backgammon-players known to me, better
  even than the Greeks; they throw the dice from the hand and continue
  foully abusing the fathers and mothers of the “bones” whilst the game
  lasts. It is often played in the intervals of dinner by the higher
  classes in Persia.

Footnote 451:

  Metaphor from loading camels and mules. To “eat” a piece is to take

Footnote 452:

  Arab. “Bilábil”; a plural of “Bulbul” with a double entendre balábil
  (plur. of ballalah) = heart’s troubles, and “balá, bul” = a calamity,
  nay, etc.


It is related, O auspicious King, that one of the olden monarchs was
once minded to ride out in state with the officers of his realm and the
Grandees of his retinue and display to the folk the marvels of his
magnificence. So he ordered his Lords and Emirs equip them therefor and
commanded his keeper of the wardrobe to bring him of the richest of
raiment, such as befitted the King in his state; and he bade them bring
his steeds[453] of the finest breeds and pedigrees every man heeds;
which being done, he chose out of the raiment what rejoiced him most and
of the horses that which he deemed best; and, donning the clothes,
together with a collar set with margarites and rubies and all manner
jewels, mounted and set forth in state, making his destrier prance and
curvet among his troops and glorying in his pride and despotic power.
And Iblis came to him and, laying his hand upon his nose, blew into his
nostrils the breath of hauteur and conceit, so that he magnified and
glorified himself and said in his heart, “Who among men is like unto
me?” And he became so puffed up with arrogance and self-sufficiency, and
so taken up with the thought of his own splendour and magnificence, that
he would not vouchsafe a glance to any man. Presently, there stood
before him one clad in tattered clothes and saluted him, but he returned
not his salam; whereupon the stranger laid hold of his horse’s bridle.
“Lift thy hand,” cried the King, “thou knowest not whose bridle-rein it
is whereof thou takest hold.” Quoth the other, “I have a need of thee.”
Quoth the King, “Wait till I alight and then name thy need.” Rejoined
the stranger, “It is a secret and I will not tell it but in thine ear.”
So the King bowed his head to him and he said, “I am the Angel of Death
and I purpose to take thy soul.” Replied the King, “Have patience with
me a little, whilst I return to my house and take leave of my people and
children and neighbours and wife.” “By no means so,” answered the Angel;
“thou shalt never return nor look on them again, for the fated term of
thy life is past.” So saying, he took the soul of the King (who fell off
his horse’s back dead) and departed thence. Presently the Death Angel
met a devout man, of whom Almighty Allah had accepted, and saluted him.
He returned the salute, and the Angel said to him, “O pious man, I have
a need of thee which must be kept secret.” “Tell it in my ear,” quoth
the devotee; and quoth the other, “I am the Angel of Death.” Replied the
man, “Welcome to thee! and praised be Allah for thy coming! I am aweary
of awaiting thine arrival; for indeed long hath been thine absence from
the lover which longeth for thee.” Said the Angel, “If thou have any
business, make an end of it;” but the other answered, saying, “There is
nothing so urgent to me as the meeting with my Lord, to whom be honour
and glory!” And the Angel said “How wouldst thou fain have me take thy
soul? I am bidden to take it as thou willest and choosest.” He replied,
“Tarry till I make the Wuzu-ablution and pray; and, when I prostrate
myself, then take my soul while my body is on the ground.”[454] Quoth
the Angel, “Verily, my Lord (be He extolled and exalted!) commanded me
not to take thy soul but with thy consent and as thou shouldst wish; so
I will do thy will.” Then the devout man made the minor ablution[455]
and prayed: and the Angel of Death took his soul in the act of
prostration and Almighty Allah transported it to the place of mercy and
acceptance and forgiveness. And they tell another tale of


Footnote 453:

  The popular English idea of the Arab horse is founded upon utter
  unfact. Book after book tells us, “There are three distinct breeds of
  Arabians—the _Attechi_, a very superior breed; the _Kadishi_, mixed
  with these and of little value; and the _Kochlani_, highly prized and
  very difficult to procure.” “Attechi” may be At-Tází (the Arab horse,
  or hound) or some confusion with “At” (Turk.) a horse. “Kadish”
  (Gadish or Kidish) is a nag; a gelding, a hackney, a “pacer”
  (generally called “Rahwán”). “Kochlani” is evidently “Kohláni,” the
  Kohl-eyed, because the skin round the orbits is dark as if powdered.
  This is the true blue blood; and the bluest of all is “Kohláni
  al-Ajúz” (of the old woman) a name thus accounted for. An Arab mare
  dropped a filly when in flight; her rider perforce gallopped on and
  presently saw the foal appear in camp, when it was given to an old
  woman for nursing and grew up to be famous. The home of the Arab horse
  is the vast plateau of Al-Najd: the Tahámah or lower maritime regions
  of Arabia, like Malabar, will not breed good beasts. The pure blood
  all descends from five collateral lines called Al-Khamsah (the
  Cinque). Literary and pedantic Arabs derive them from the mares of
  Mohammed a native of the dry and rocky region, Al-Hijaz, whither
  horses are all imported. Others go back (with the Koran, chapt.
  xxviii.) to Solomon, possibly Salmán, a patriarch fourth in descent
  from Ishmael and some 600 years older than the Hebrew King. The Badawi
  derive the five from Rabí’at al-Faras (R. of the mare) fourth in
  descent from Adnán, the fount of Arab genealogy. But they differ about
  the names: those generally given are Kahilan (Kohaylat), Sakláwi
  (which the Badawin pronounce Sagláwi), Abayán, and Hamdáni; others
  substitute Manákhi (the long-maned), Tanís and Jalfún. These require
  no certificate amongst Arabs; for strangers a simple statement is
  considered enough. The Badawin despise all half-breeds (Arab sires and
  country mares), Syrian, Turkish, Kurdish and Egyptian. They call these
  (first mentioned in the reign of Ahmes, B.C. 1600) the “sons of
  horses”; as opposed to “sons of mares,” or thorough-breds. Nor do they
  believe in city-bred animals. I have great doubts concerning our old
  English sires, such as the Darley Arabian which looks like a Kurdish
  half-bred, the descendant of those Cappadocians so much prized by the
  Romans: in Syria I rode a “Harfúshí” (Kurd) the very image of it.
  There is no difficulty in buying Arab stallions except the price. Of
  course the tribe does not like to part with what may benefit the
  members generally; but offers of £500 to £1,000 would overcome men’s
  scruples. It is different with mares, which are almost always the
  joint property of several owners. The people too dislike to see a hat
  on a thorough-bred mare: “What hast thou done that thou art ridden by
  that ill-omened Kafir?” the Badawin used to mutter when they saw a
  highly respectable missionary at Damascus mounting a fine Ruwalá mare.
  The feeling easily explains the many wars about horses occurring in
  Arab annals, _e.g._ about Dáhis and Ghabrá. (C. de Perceval, _Essai_,
  vol. ii.)

Footnote 454:

  The stricter kind of Eastern Jew prefers to die on the floor not in
  bed, as was the case with the late Mr. Emmanuel Deutsch, who in his
  well-known article on the Talmud had the courage to speak of “Our
  Saviour.” But as a rule the Israelite, though he mostly appears as a
  Deist, a Unitarian, has a fund of fanatical feelings which crop up in
  old age and near death. The “converts” in Syria and elsewhere, whose
  Judaism is intensified by “conversion,” when offers are made to them
  by the missionaries repair to the Khákhám (scribe) and, after abundant
  wrangling determine upon a _modus vivendi_. They are to pay a
  proportion of their wages, to keep careful watch in the cause of
  Israel and to die orthodox. In Istria there is a legend of a Jew Prior
  in a convent who was not discovered till he announced himself most
  unpleasantly on his death-bed. For a contrary reason to Jewish
  humility the Roman Emperors preferred to die standing.

Footnote 455:

  He wished to die in a state of ceremonial purity; as has before been


A certain King had heaped up coin beyond count and gathered store of all
precious things, which Allah the Most Highest hath created. So, in order
that he might take his pleasure whenas he should find leisure to enjoy
all this abounding wealth he had collected, he built him a palace wide
and lofty such as besitteth and beseemeth Kings; and set thereto strong
doors and appointed, for its service and its guard, servants and
soldiers and doorkeepers to watch and ward. One day, he bade the cooks
dress him somewhat of the goodliest of food and assembled his household
and retainers and boon-companions and servants to eat with him, and
partake of his bounty. Then he sat down upon the sofa of his kingship
and dominion; and, propping his elbow upon the cushion, addressed
himself, saying, “O soul, thou hast gathered together all the wealth of
the world; so now take thy leisure therein and eat of this good at thine
ease, in long life and prosperity ever rife!”——And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that hardly had the
King made an end of saying to himself, “Eat of this weal at thine ease,
in long life and prosperity ever rife!” when a man clad in tattered
raiment, with an asker’s wallet hanging at his neck, as he were one who
came to beg food, knocked with the door-ring a knock so loud and
terrible that the whole palace shook as with quake of earth and the
King’s throne trembled. The servants were affrighted and rushed to the
door, and when they saw the man who had knocked they cried out at him,
saying, “Woe to thee! what manner of unmannerly fashion be this? Wait
till the King eateth and we will then give thee of what is left.” Quoth
he, “Tell your lord to come out and speak with me, for I have of him a
pressing need and a matter to heed.” They cried, “Away, fool! who art
thou that we should bid our lord come forth to thee?” But he said, “Tell
him of this.” So they went in and told the King, who said, “Did ye not
rebuke him and draw upon him and threaten him!” Now as he spoke, behold,
there came another knock at the gate, louder than the first knock,
whereupon the servants sprang at the stranger with staves and weapons,
to fall upon him and slay him; but he shouted at them, saying, “Bide in
your steads, for I am the Angel of Death.” Hereat their hearts quaked
and their wits forsook them; their understandings were in confusion,
their side-muscles quivered in perturbation and their limbs lost the
power of motion. Then said the King to them, “Tell him to take a
substitute[456] in my place and one to relieve me in this case.” But the
Angel answered, saying, “I will take no substitute, and I come not but
on thine account, to cause separation between thee and the goods thou
hast gathered together and the riches thou hast heaped up and
entreasured.” When the King heard this, he wept and groaned, saying,
“Allah curse the treasure which hath deluded and undone me and diverted
me from the service of my Lord! I deemed it would profit me, but to-day
it is a regret for me and a calamity to me, and behold, I go forth,
empty-handed of it, and leave it to my foes.” Thereupon Allah caused the
Treasure to speak out and it said, “Wherefore cursest thou me?[457]
Curse thyself, for Allah created both me and eke thyself of the dust and
appointed me to be in thine hand, that thou mightest provide thee with
me a viaticum for the next world and give alms with me to the poor and
the needy and the sick; and build mosques and hospices and bridges and
aqueducts, so might I be an aidance unto thee in the world to come. But
thou didst garner me and hoard me up and on thine own vanities bestowest
me, neither gavest thou thanks for me, as was due, but wast ungrateful
to me; and now thou must leave me to thy foes and thou hast naught save
thy regretting and thy repenting. But what is my sin, that thou
shouldest revile me?” Then the Angel of Death took the King’s soul as he
sat on his throne before he ate of the food, and he fell down dead.
Quoth Allah Almighty, “While they were rejoicing for that which had been
given them, we suddenly laid hold on them; and, behold, they were seized
with despair.”[458] And they tell another tale of


Footnote 456:

  Arab. “Badal”: in Sind (not to speak of other places) it was customary
  to hire a pauper “badal” to be hanged in stead of a rich man. Sir
  Charles Napier signed many a death-warrant before he ever heard of the

Footnote 457:

  Arab. “La’an” = curse. The word is in every mouth though strongly
  forbidden by religion. Even of the enemies of Al-Islam the learned
  say, “Ila’an Yezíd wa lá tazíd” = curse Yezid but do not exceed
  (_i.e._ refrain from cursing the others). This, however, is in the
  Shafi’í school and the Hanafís do not allow it (Pilgrimage i. 198).
  Hence the Moslem when scrupulous uses na’al (shoe) for la’an (curse)
  as Ina’al abúk (for Ila’an abu’-k) or, _drat_ (instead of _damn_) your
  father. Men must hold Supreme Intelligence to be of feeble kind if put
  off by such miserable pretences.

Footnote 458:

  Koran vi. 44, speaking of the Infidels. It is a most unamiable
  chapter, with such assertions as “Allah leadeth into error whom He
  pleaseth,” etc.


There was a puissant despot among the Kings of the Banú Isráíl, who sat
one day upon the throne of his kingship, when he saw come in to him, by
the gate of the hall, a man of forbidding aspect and horrible presence.
The King was affrighted at his sudden intrusion and his look terrified
him; so he sprang up before him and said, “Who art thou, O man? Who gave
thee leave to come in to me and who invited thee to enter my house?”
Quoth the stranger, “Verily the Lord of the House sent me to thee, nor
can any doorkeeper exclude me, nor need I leave to come in to Kings; for
I reck not of a Sultan’s majesty neither of the multitude of his guards.
I am he from whom no tyrant is at rest, nor can any man escape from my
grasp: I am the Destroyer of delights and the Sunderer of societies.”
Now when the King heard this a palsy crept over him[459] and he fell on
his face in a swoon; but presently coming to himself, he asked, “Art
thou then the Angel of Death?”; and the stranger answered, “Yes.” “I
conjure thee, by Allah,” quoth the King, “grant me one single day’s
respite, that I may pray pardon of my sins and ask absolution of my Lord
and restore to their rightful owners the monies which are in my
treasures, so I may not be burdened with the woe of a reckoning nor with
the misery of punishment therefor.” Replied the Angel, “Well-away!
well-away! this may be in no way.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixty-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that quoth the
Death-messenger to the King, “Well-away, well-away! this may be in no
way. How can I grant thee a reprieve when the days of thy life are
counted and thy breaths numbered and thy moments fixed and written?”
“Grant me an hour,” asked the King; but the Angel answered saying, “The
hour was in the account and hath sped, and thou unheeding aught; and
hath fled, and thou taking no thought: and now thy breathings are
accomplished, and there remaineth to thee but one breath.” Quoth the
King, “Who will be with me when I am transported to my tomb?” Quoth the
Angel, “Naught will be with thee but thy works good or evil.” “I have no
works,” said the King; and the Angel, “Doubtless thy long home will be
in hell-fire and thy doom the wrath of the Almighty.” Then he seized the
soul of the King, and he fell off his throne and dropped on the earth
dead. And there arose a mighty weeping and wailing and clamour of
keening for him among the people of his court, and had they known that
to which he went of the wrath of his Lord, their weeping for him had
been sorer and their wailing louder and more abounding. And a story is
told of


Footnote 459:

  Alluding to the “formication” which accompanies a stroke of paralysis.


It is related that Iskandar Zu al-Karnayn[461] once came, in his
journeyings, upon a tribe of small folk, who owned naught of the weals
of the world and who dug their graves over against the doors of their
houses and were wont at all times to visit them and sweep the earth from
them and keep them clean and pray at them and worship Almighty Allah at
them; and they had no meat save grasses and the growth of the ground. So
Iskandar sent a man to summon their King, but he refused to come,
saying, “I have no need of him.” Thereupon Iskandar went to him and
said, “How is it with you and what manner of men are ye?; for I see with
you forsooth naught of gold or silver, nor find I with you aught of the
weals of the world.” Answered the King, “None hath his fill of the weals
of the world.” Iskandar then asked “Why do you dig your graves before
your house-doors?”; and the King answered, “That they may be the
prospective of our eye-glances; so we may look on them and ever renew
talk and thought of death, neither forget the world to come; and on this
wise the love of the world be banished from our hearts and we be not
thereby distracted from the service of our Lord, the Almighty.” Quoth
Iskandar, “Why do ye eat grasses?”; and the other replied, “Because we
abhor to make our bellies the tombs of animals and because the pleasure
of eating outstrippeth not the gullet.” Then putting forth his hand he
brought out a skull of a son of Adam and, laying it before Iskandar,
said, “O Zu al-Karnayn, Lord of the Two Horns, knowest thou who owned
this skull?” Quoth he, “Nay;” and quoth the other, “He who owned this
skull was a King of the Kings of the world, who dealt tyrannously with
his subjects, specially wronging the weak and wasting his time in
heaping up the rubbish of this world, till Allah took his sprite and
made the fire his abiding-site; and this is his head.” He then put forth
his hand and produced another skull and, laying it before Iskandar, said
to him, “Knowest thou this?” “No,” answered the conqueror; and the other
rejoined, “This is the skull of another King, who dealt justly by his
lieges and was kindly solicitous for the folk of his realm and his
dominions, till Allah took his soul and lodged him in His Garden and
made high his degree in Heaven.” Then laying his hands on Iskandar’s
head he said, “Would I knew which of these two art thou.” Whereupon
Iskandar wept with sore weeping and straining the King to his bosom
cried, “If thou be minded to company with me, I will commit to thee as
Wazir the government of my affairs and share with thee my kingdom.”
Cried the other, “Well-away, well-away! I have no mind to this.” “And
why so?” asked Iskandar, and the King answered, “Because all men are thy
foes by reason of the wealth and the worlds thou hast won: while all men
are my true friends, because of my contentment and pauperdom, for that I
possess nothing, neither covet aught of the goods of life; I have no
desire to them nor wish for them, neither reck I aught save
contentment.” So Iskandar pressed him to his breast and kissed him
between the eyes and went his way.[462] And among the tales they tell is
one concerning


Footnote 460:

  Pronounce Zool Karnayn.

Footnote 461:

  _i.e._ the Koranic and our mediæval Alexander, Lord of the two Horns
  (East and West) much “Matagrobolized” and very different from him of
  Macedon. The title is variously explained, from two protuberances on
  his head or helm, from two long locks and, possibly, from the
  ram-horns of Jupiter Ammon. The anecdote in the text seems suggested
  by the famous interview (probably a _canard_) with Diogenes: see in
  the Gesta, Tale cxlvi. “The answer of Diomedes the Pirate to
  Alexander.” Iskandar was originally called Marzbán (Lord of the
  Marches), son of Marzabah; and, though descended from Yunán, son of
  Japhet, the eponymus of the Greeks, was born obscure, the son of an
  old woman. According to the Persians he was the son of the Elder Dáráb
  (Darius Codomannus of the Kayanian or Second dynasty), by a daughter
  of Philip of Macedon; and was brought up by his grandfather. When
  Abraham and Isaac had rebuilt the Ka’abah they foregathered with him
  and Allah sent him forth against the four quarters of the earth to
  convert men to the faith of the Friend or to cut their throats; thus
  he became one of the four world-conquerors with Nimrod, Solomon, Bukht
  al-Nasr (Nabochodonosor); and he lived down two generations of men.
  His Wazir was Aristú (the Greek Aristotle) and he carried a couple of
  flags, white and black, which made day and night for him and
  facilitated his conquests. At the end of Persia, where he was invited
  by the people, on account of the cruelty of his half brother Darab
  II., he came upon two huge mountains on the same line, behind which
  dwelt a host of abominable pygmies, two spans high, with curious eyes,
  ears which served as mattresses and coverlets, huge fanged mouths,
  lions’ claws and hairy hind quarters. They ate men, destroyed
  everything, copulated in public and had swarms of children. These were
  Yájúj and Májúj (Gog and Magog) descendants of Japhet. Sikandar built
  against them the famous wall with stones cemented and riveted by iron
  and copper. The “Great Wall” of China, the famous bulwark against the
  Tartars dates from B.C. 320; (Alexander of Macedon died B.C. 324) and
  as the Arabs knew Canton well before Mohammed’s day, they may have
  built their romance upon it. The Guebres consigned Sikandar to hell
  for burning the Nusks or sections of the Zendavesta.

Footnote 462:

  These terrific preachments to Eastern despots (who utterly ignore
  them) are a staple produce of Oriental tale-literature and form the
  chiaro-oscuro, as it were, of a picture whose lights are brilliant
  touches of profanity and indelicate humour. It certainly has the charm
  of contrast. Much of the above is taken from the Sikandar-nameh
  (Alexander Book) of the great Persian poet, Nizámi, who flourished
  A.H. 515–597, between the days of Firdausi (ob. A.D. 1021) and Sa’adi
  (ob. A.D. 1291). In that romance Sikandar builds, “where the sun goes
  down,” a castle of glittering stone which kills men by causing
  excessive laughter and surrounds it with yellow earth like gold. Hence
  the City of Brass. He also converts, instead of being converted by,
  the savages of the text. He finds a stone of special excellence which
  he calls Almás (diamond); and he obtains it from the Valley of
  Serpents by throwing down flesh to the eagles. Lastly he is
  accompanied by “Bilínás” or “Bilínús,” who is apparently Apollonius of


It is told of Anushirwan, the just King, that once upon a time he
feigned himself sick, and bade his stewards and intendants go round
about the provinces of his empire and the quarters of his dominion and
seek him out a mud-brick thrown away from some ruined village, that he
might use it as medicine, informing his intimates that the leaches had
prescribed this to him. So they went the round of the provinces of his
reign and of all the lands under his sway and said to him on return, “In
all the realm we have found nor ruined site nor castaway mud-brick.” At
this Anushirwan rejoiced and rendered thanks to the Lord, saying, “I was
but minded to try my kingdom and prove mine empire, that I might know if
any place therein remained ruined and deserted, so I might rebuild and
repeople it; but, since there be no place in it but is inhabited, the
affairs of the reign are best-conditioned and its ordinance is
excellent; and its populousness[464] hath reached the pitch of
perfection.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixty-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the high
officials returned and reported, “We have found in the empire nor ruined
site nor rotten brick,” the Just King thanked his God and said, “Verily
the affairs of the realm are best-conditioned and its ordinance is
excellent and its populousness hath reached the pink of perfection.” And
ken thou, O King, continued Shahrazad, that these olden Kings strave not
and toiled not for the peopling of their possessions, but because they
knew that the more populous a country is, the more abundant is that
which is desired therein; and because they wist the saying of the wise
and the learned to be true without other view, namely, “Religion
dependeth on the King, the King on the troops, the troops on the
treasury, the treasury on the populousness of the country and its
prosperity on the justice done to the lieges.” Wherefore they upheld no
one in tyranny or oppression; neither suffered their dependants and
suite to work injustice, knowing that kingdoms are not established upon
tyranny, but that cities and places fall into ruin when oppressors are
set as rulers over them, and their inhabitants disperse and flee to
other governments; whereby ruin falleth upon the realm, the imports
fail, the treasuries become empty and the pleasant lives of the subjects
are perturbed; for that they love not a tyrant and cease not to offer up
successive prayers against him; so that the King hath no ease of his
kingdom, and the vicissitudes of fortune speedily bring him to
destruction. And they tell a tale concerning


Footnote 463:

  I have explained the beautiful name in Night cclxxxix: He is still
  famous for having introduced into Persia the fables of Pilpay
  (Bidyapati, the lord of lore) and a game which the genius of Persia
  developed into chess.

Footnote 464:

  Here we find an eternal truth, of which Malthusians ever want
  reminding; that the power of a nation simply consists in its numbers
  of fighting men and in their brute bodily force. The conquering race
  is that which raises most foot-pounds: hence the North conquers the
  South in the Northern hemisphere and _vice versâ_.


Among the Children of Israel one of the Kazis had a wife of surpassing
beauty, constant in fasting and abounding in patience and
long-suffering; and he, being minded to make the pilgrimage to
Jerusalem, appointed his own brother Kazi in his stead, during his
absence, and commended his wife to his charge. Now this brother had
heard of her beauty and loveliness and had taken a fancy to her. So no
sooner was his brother gone than he went to her and sought her
love-favours; but she denied him and held fast to her chastity. The more
she repelled him, the more he pressed his suit upon her; till,
despairing of her and fearing lest she should acquaint his brother with
his misconduct whenas he should return, he suborned false witnesses to
testify against her of adultery; and cited her and carried her before
the King of the time who adjudged her to be stoned. So they dug a pit,
and seating her therein stoned her, till she was covered with stones,
and the man said, “Be this hole her grave!” But when it was dark a
passer-by, making for a neighbouring hamlet, heard her groaning in sore
pain; and, pulling her out of the pit, carried her home to his wife,
whom he bade dress her wounds. The peasant woman tended her till she
recovered and presently gave her her child to be nursed; and she used to
lodge with the child in another house by night. Now a certain thief saw
her and lusted after her. So he sent to her seeking her love-favours,
but she denied herself to him; wherefore he resolved to slay her and,
making his way into her lodging by night (and she sleeping), thought to
strike at her with a knife; but it smote the little one and killed it.
Now when he knew his misdeed, fear overtook him and he went forth the
house and Allah preserved from him her chastity. But as she awoke in the
morning, she found the child by her side with throat cut; and presently
the mother came and seeing her boy dead, said to the nurse, “‘Twas thou
didst murther him.” Therewith she beat her a grievous beating and
purposed to put her to death; but her husband interposed and delivered
the woman, saying, “By Allah, thou shalt not do on this wise.” So the
woman, who had somewhat of money with her, fled forth for her life,
knowing not whither she should wend. Presently, she came to a village,
where she saw a crowd of people about a man crucified to a tree-stump,
but still in the chains of life. “What hath he done?” she asked, and
they answered, “He hath committed a crime, which nothing can expiate but
death or the payment of such a fine by way of alms.” So she said to
them, “Take the money and let him go;” and, when they did so, he
repented at her hands and vowed to serve her, for the love of Almighty
Allah till death should release him. Then he built her a cell and lodged
her therein; after which he betook himself to woodcutting and brought
her daily her bread. As for her, she was constant in worship, so that
there came no sick man or demoniac to her, but she prayed for him and he
was straightway healed.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the woman’s
cell was visited by folk (and she constant in worship), it befel by
decree of the Almighty that He sent down upon her husband’s brother (the
same who had caused her to be stoned), a cancer in the face, and smote
the villager’s wife (the same who had beaten her) with leprosy, and
afflicted the thief (the same who had murthered the child) with palsy.
Now when the Kazi returned from his pilgrimage, he asked his brother of
his wife, and he told him that she was dead, whereat he mourned sore and
accounted her with her Maker. After awhile, very many folk heard of the
pious recluse and flocked to her cell from all parts of the length and
breadth of the earth; whereupon said the Kazi to his brother, “O my
brother, wilt thou not seek out yonder pious woman? Haply Allah shall
decree thee healing at her hands!” and he replied, “O my brother, carry
me to her.” Moreover, the husband of the leprous woman heard of the
pious devotee and carried his wife to her, as did also the people of the
paralytic thief; and they all met at the door of the hermitage. Now she
had a place wherefrom she could look out upon those who came to her,
without their seeing her; and they waited till her servant came, when
they begged admittance and obtained permission. Presently she saw them
all and recognized them; so she veiled and cloaked face and body and
went out and stood in the door, looking at her husband and his brother
and the thief and the peasant-woman; but they could not recognise her.
Then said she to them, “Ho folk, ye shall not be relieved of what is
with you till ye confess your sins; for, when the creature confesseth
his sins the Creator relenteth towards him and granteth him that
wherefore he resorteth to Him.” Quoth the Kazi to his brother, “O my
brother, repent to Allah and persist not in thy frowardness, for it will
be more helpful to thy relief.” And the tongue of the case spake this

 This day oppressor and oppressèd meet, ✿ And Allah sheweth secrets we
 This is a place where sinners low are brought; ✿ And Allah raiseth saint
    to highest seat.
 Our Lord and Master shows the truth right clear, ✿ Though sinner froward
    be or own defeat:
 Alas[465] for those who rouse the Lord to wrath, ✿ As though of Allah’s
    wrath they nothing weet!
 O whoso seekest honours, know they are ✿ From Allah, and His fear with
    love entreat.

(Saith the relator), Then quoth the brother, “Now I will tell the truth:
I did thus and thus with thy wife;” and he confessed the whole matter,
adding, “And this is my offence.” Quoth the leprous woman, “As for me, I
had a woman with me and imputed to her that of which I knew her to be
guiltless, and beat her grievously; and this is my offence.” And quoth
the paralytic, “And I went in to a woman to kill her, after I had
tempted her to commit adultery and she had refused; and I slew a child
that lay by her side; and this is my offence.” Then said the pious
woman, “O my God, even as Thou hast made them feel the misery of revolt,
so show them now the excellence of submission, for Thou over all things
art Omnipotent!” And Allah (to whom belong Majesty and Might!) made them
whole. Then the Kazi fell to looking on her and considering her
straitly, till she asked him why he looked so hard and he said, “I had a
wife and were she not dead, I had said thou art she.” Hereupon, she made
herself known to him and both began praising Allah (to whom belong
Majesty and Might!) for that which He had vouchsafed them of the reunion
of their loves; but the brother and the thief and the villager’s wife
joined in imploring her forgiveness. So she forgave them one and all,
and they worshipped Allah in that place and rendered her due service,
till Death parted them. And one of the Sayyids[466] hath related this
tale of


Footnote 465:

  Arab. “Wayha,” not so strong as “Woe to,” etc. Al-Hariri often uses it
  as formula of affectionate remonstrance.

Footnote 466:

  As a rule (much disputed) the Sayyid is a descendant from Mohammed
  through his grandchild Hasan, and is a man of the pen; whereas the
  Sharif derives from Husayn and is a man of the sword. The Najíb
  al-taraf is the son of a common Moslemah by a Sayyid, as opposed to
  the “Najib al-tarafayn,” when both parents are of Apostolic blood. The
  distinction is not noticed in Lane’s “Modern Egyptians.” The Sharif is
  a fanatic and often dangerous, as I have instanced in Pilgrimage iii.


I was circuiting the Ka’abah one dark night, when I heard a plaintive
voice, speaking from a contrite heart and saying, “O Bountiful One, Thy
past boon! Indeed, by my heart shall Thy covenant never be undone.”
Hearing this voice, my heart fluttered so that I was like to die; but I
followed the sound and behold, it came from a woman, to whom I said,
“Peace be with thee, O handmaid of Allah;” whereto she replied, “And
with thee be peace, and the mercy of Allah and His blessings!” Quoth I,
“I conjure thee, by Allah the Most Great, tell me what is the covenant
to which thy heart is constant.” Quoth she, “But that thou adjurest me
by the Omnipotent, I would not tell thee my secrets. See what is before
me.” So I looked and lo! there was a child lying asleep before her and
breathing heavily in his slumber. Said she, “Know, that I set forth,
being big with this boy, to make the pilgrimage to this House and took
passage in a ship; but the waves rose against us and the winds blew
contrary and the vessel broke up. I saved myself on a plank; and, on
that bit of wood, I gave birth to this child; and while he lay on my
bosom and the waves beating upon me,”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the woman
continued, “Now while the boy lay on my bosom and the waves beat upon
me, there swam up to me one of the sailors, who climbed on the plank and
said:—By Allah, I desired thee whilst thou wast yet in the ship, and now
I have come at thee: so yield thy body to me, or I will throw thee into
the sea. Said I:—Out on thee! hast thou no memory of that which thou
hast seen and is it no warning to thee? Quoth he:—I have seen the like
of this many a time and come off safe and care not. Quoth I:—O fellow,
we are now in a calamity, whence we hope to be delivered by obedience to
Allah and not by disobedience. But he persisted with me, and I feared
him and thought to put him off; so I said to him:—Wait till this babe
shall sleep; but he took the child off my lap and threw him into the
sea. Now when I saw this desperate deed, my heart sank and sorrow was
sore upon me; so I raised my eyes heavenwards and said:—O Thou that
interposest between a man and his heart, intervene between me and this
leonine brute; for Thou over all things art Omnipotent! And by Allah,
hardly had I spoken when a beast rose out of the sea and snatched him
off the plank. When I saw myself alone my sorrows redoubled and my grief
and longing for my child, and I recited:—

 My coolth of eyes, the darling child of me ✿ Is lost, and racked my
    heart with agony;
 My body wrecked, and red-hot coals of love ✿ Burning my liver with sore
    pangs, I see.
 In this my sorrow shows no gleam of joy; ✿ Save Thy high grace and my
 Hast seen, O Lord, what unto me befel; ✿ My son aye lost and parting
    pangs I dree:
 Take ruth on us and make us meet again; ✿ For now my stay and only
    hope’s in Thee!

I abode in this condition a day and a night; and, when morning dawned, I
caught sight of the sails of a vessel shining afar off, nor did the
waves cease to drive me and the winds to waft me on, till I reached the
ship, whose sails I had sighted. The sailors took me up and I looked and
behold, my babe was amongst them: so I threw myself upon him and said:—O
folk, this is my child: how and whence came ye by him? Quoth
they:—Whilst we were sailing along the seas the ship suddenly stood
still and lo! that which stayed us was a beast, as it were a great city,
and this babe on its back, sucking his thumbs. So we took him up. Now
when I heard this, I told them my tale and all that had betided me and
returned thanks to my Lord for His goodness, and vowed to Him that
never, whilst I lived, would I stir from His House nor swerve from His
service; and since then I have never asked of Him aught but He hath
given it me.” Now when she had made an end of her story (quoth the
Sayyid), I put my hand to my alms-pouch and would have given to her, but
she exclaimed, “Away from me, thou idle man! Have I not told thee of His
mercies and the graciousness of His dealings and shall I take an alms
from other than His hand?” And I could not prevail with her to accept
aught of me: so I left her and went away, reciting these couplets:—

 How many boons conceals the Deity, ✿ Eluding human sight in mystery:
 How many graces come on heels of stresses, ✿ And fill the burning heart
    with jubilee:
 How many a sorrow in the morn appears, ✿ And turns at night-tide into
    gladdest gree:
 If things go hard with thee some day, yet trust ✿ Th’ Eterne, th’
    Almighty God of Unity:
 And pray the Prophet that he intercede; ✿ Through intercession every
    wish shalt see.

And she left not the service of her Lord, cleaving unto His House, till
death came to her. And a tale is also told, by Málik bin Dínár[467]
(Allah have mercy on him!) of


Footnote 467:

  A theologian of Bassorah (eighth century): surnamed Abú Yahyá. The
  prayer for mercy denotes that he was dead when the tale was written.

                         THE PIOUS BLACK SLAVE.

We were once afflicted with drought at Bassorah and went forth sundry
times to pray for rain, but saw no sign of our prayers being accepted.
So I went, I and ‘Itaa al-Salamí and Sábit al-Banáni and Naja al-Bakáa
and Mohammed bin Wási’a and Ayyúb al-Sukhtiyáni and Habíb al-Farsi and
Hassán bin Abi Sinán and ‘Otbah al-Ghulám and Sálih al-Muzani,[468] till
we reached the oratory,[469] when the boys came out of the schools and
we prayed for rain, but saw no sign of acceptance. So about midday the
people went away and I and Sabit al-Banani tarried in the place of
prayer till nightfall, when we saw a black of comely face, slender of
shank[470] and big of belly, approach us, clad in a pair of woollen
drawers; if all he wore had been priced, it would not have fetched a
couple of dirhams. He brought water and made the minor ablution, then,
going up to the prayer-niche, prayed two inclinations deftly, his
standing and bowing and prostration being exactly similar in both. Then
he raised his glance heavenwards, and said, “O my God and my Lord and
Master, how long wilt Thou reject Thy servants in that which offereth no
hurt to Thy sovereignty? Is that which is with Thee wasted or are the
treasuries of Thy Kingdom annihilated? I conjure Thee, by Thy love to me
forthwith to pour out upon us Thy rain-clouds of grace!” He spake and
hardly had he made an end of speaking, when the heavens clouded over and
there came a rain, as if the mouths of waterskins had been opened; and
when we left the oratory, we were knee-deep in water,——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixty-eighth Night,

She said, it hath reached me, O auspicious King, that hardly had he
spoken when the heavens clouded over and there came a rain, as if the
mouths of waterskins had been opened. And when we left the oratory we
were knee-deep in water, and we were lost in wonder at the black. So I
accosted him and said to him, “Woe to thee, O black, art thou not
ashamed of what thou saidst?” He turned to me and asked, “What said I?”;
and I, “Thy saying to Allah:—By Thy love of me; and what giveth thee to
know that He loveth thee?” Replied he, “Away from me, O thou distracted
by the world from the care of thine own soul. Where was I, when He gave
me strength to profess the unity of the Godhead and vouchsafed unto me
the knowledge of Him? How deemest thou that He aided me thus except of
His love to me?” adding, “Verily, His love to me is after the measure of
my love to Him.” Quoth I, “Tarry awhile with me, so may Allah have mercy
on thee!” But he said, “I am a chattel and the Book enjoineth me to obey
my lesser master.” So we followed him afar off, till we saw him enter
the house of a slave-broker. Now the first half of the night was past
and the last half was longsome upon us, so we went away; but next
morning, we repaired to the slave-dealer and said to him, “Hast thou a
lad to sell us for service?” He answered, “Yes, I have an hundred lads
or so and they are all for sale.” Then he showed us slave after slave,
till he had shown us some seventy; but my friend was not amongst them,
and the dealer said, “These are all I have.” But, as we were going out
from him we saw a ruinous hut behind his house and going in behold, we
found the black standing there. I cried, “‘Tis he, by the Lord of the
Ka’abah!” and turning to the dealer, said to him, “Sell me yonder
slave.” Replied he, “O Abu Yahya, this is a pestilent unprofitable
fellow, who hath no concern by night but weeping and by day but
repentance.” I rejoined, “It is for that I want him.” So the dealer
called him, and he came out, showing drowsiness. Quoth his master, “Take
him at thine own price, so thou hold me free of all his faults.” I
bought him for twenty dinars and asked “What is his name?” and the
dealer answered, “Maymún, the monkey;” and I took him by the hand and
went out with him, intending to go home; but he turned to me and said,
“O my lesser lord, why and wherefore didst thou buy me? By Allah, I am
not fit for the service of God’s creatures!” Replied I, “I bought thee
that I might serve thee myself; and on my head be it.” Asked he, “Why
so?” and I answered, “Wast thou not in company with us yesterday in the
place of prayer?” Quoth he, “And didst thou hear me?”; and quoth I, “It
was I accosted thee yesterday and spoke with thee.” Thereupon he
advanced till we came to a mosque, where he entered and prayed a two-bow
prayer; after which he said, “O my God and my Lord and Master, the
secret that was between me and Thee Thou hast discovered unto Thy
creatures and hast brought me to shame before the worldling. How then
shall life be sweet to me, now that other than Thou hath happened upon
that which is between Thee and me? I conjure Thee to take my soul to
Thee forthright.”[471] So saying, he prostrated himself, and I awaited
awhile without seeing him raise his head; so I shook him and behold, he
was indeed dead, the mercy of Almighty Allah be upon him! I laid him out
stretching his arms and legs and looked at him, and lo! he was smiling.
Moreover, whiteness had got the better of blackness on his brow, and his
face was radiant with light like a young moon. As we wondered at his
case, the door opened and a young man came in to us and said, “Peace be
with you! May Allah make great our reward and yours for our brother
Maymun! Here is his shroud: wrap him in it.” So saying, he gave us two
robes, never had we seen the like of them, and we shrouded him therein.
And now his tomb is a place whither men resort to pray for rain and ask
their requirements of Allah (be He extolled and exalted!); and how
excellently well saith the poet on this theme:

 The heart of Gnostic[472] homed in heavenly Garth ✿ Heaven decks, and
    Allah’s porters aid afford.
 Lo! here they drink old wine commingled with ✿ Tasním,[473] the wine of
    union with the Lord.
 Safe is the secret ‘twixt the Friend and them; ✿ Safe from all hearts
    but from that Heart adored.

And they recount another anecdote of


Footnote 468:

  A theologian of Bassorah (eighth century).

Footnote 469:

  Arab. “Musallá”; lit. a place of prayer; an oratory, a chapel, opp. to
  “Jámi’” = a (cathedral) mosque.

Footnote 470:

  According to all races familiar with the negro, a calf like a shut
  fist planted close under the ham is, like the “cucumber shin” and
  “lark heel,” a good sign in a slave. Shapely calves and well made legs
  denote the idle and the ne’er-do-well. I have often found this true
  although the rule is utterly empirical. Possibly it was suggested by
  the contrast of the nervous and lymphatic temperaments.

Footnote 471:

  These devotees address Allah as a lover would his beloved. The curious
  reader will consult for instances the Dabistan on Tasawwuf (ii. 221;
  i., iii. end, and passim.)

Footnote 472:

  Arab. “Ma’rifat,” Pers. Dánish; the knowledge of the Truth. The seven
  steps are (1) Sharí’at, external law like night; (2) Taríkat,
  religious rule like the stars; (3) Hakíkat, reality, truth like the
  moon; (4) Ma’rifat like the sun; (5) Kurbat, proximity to Allah; (6)
  Wasílat, union with Allah, and (7) Suknat, dwelling in Allah (Dabistan
  iii. 29.)

Footnote 473:

  Name of a fountain of Paradise: See Night xlix., vol. ii., p. 100.


There was once, among the Children of Israel, a man of the worthiest,
who was strenuous in the service of his Lord and abstained from things
worldly and drave them away from his heart. He had a wife who was a
helpmate meet for him and who was at all times obedient to him. They
earned their living by making trays[474] and fans, whereat they wrought
all through the light hours; and, at nightfall, the man went out into
the streets and highways seeking a buyer for what they had made. They
were wont to fast continually by day[475] and one morning they arose,
fasting, and worked at their craft till the light failed them, when the
man went forth, according to custom, to find purchasers for his wares,
and fared on till he came to the door of the house of a certain man of
wealth, one of the sons of this world, high in rank and dignity. Now the
tray-maker was fair of face and comely of form, and the wife of the
master of the house saw him and fell in love with him and her heart
inclined to him with exceeding inclination; so, her husband being
absent, she called her handmaid and said to her, “Contrive to bring
yonder man to us.” Accordingly the maid went out to him and called him
and stopped him as though she would buy what he held in hand.——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Sixty-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the maid-servant
went out to the man and asked him, “Come in; my lady hath a mind to buy
some of thy wares, after she hath tried them and looked at them.” The
man thought she spoke truly and, seeing no harm in this, entered and sat
down as she bade him; and she shut the door upon him. Whereupon her
mistress came out of her room and, taking him by the gaberdine,[476]
drew him within and said, “How long shall I seek union of thee? Verily
my patience is at an end on thine account. See now, the place is
perfumed and provision prepared and the householder is absent this
night, and I give to thee my person without reserve, I whose favours
kings and captains and men of fortune have sought this long while, but I
have regarded none of them.” And she went on talking thus to him, whilst
he raised not his eyes from the ground, for shame before Allah Almighty
and fear of the pains and penalties of His punishment; even as saith the

 ‘Twixt me and riding many a noble dame, ✿ Was naught but shame which
    kept me chaste and pure:
 My shame was cure to her; but haply were ✿ Shame to depart, she ne’er
    had known a cure.

The man strove to free himself from her, but could not; so he said to
her, “I want one thing of thee.” She asked, “What is that?”: and he
answered, “I wish for pure water and that I may carry it to the highest
place of thy house and do somewhat therewith and cleanse myself of an
impurity, which I may not disclose to thee.” Quoth she, “The house is
large and hath closets and corners and privies at command.” But he
replied, “I want nothing but to be at a height.” So she said to her
slave-girl, “Carry him up to the belvedere on the house-terrace.”
Accordingly the maid took him up to the very top and, giving him a
vessel of water, went down and left him. Then he made the ablution and
prayed a two-bow prayer; after which he looked at the ground, thinking
to throw himself down, but seeing it afar off, feared to be dashed to
pieces by the fall.[477] Then he bethought him of his disobedience to
Allah, and the consequences of his sin; so it became a light matter to
him to offer up his life and shed his blood; and he said, “O my God and
my Lord, Thou seest that which is fallen on me; neither is my case
hidden from Thee. Thou indeed over all things art Omnipotent and the
tongue of my case reciteth and saith:”—

 I show my heart and thoughts to Thee, and Thou ✿ Alone my secret’s
    secrecy canst know.
 If I address Thee fain I cry aloud; ✿ Or, if I’m mute, my signs for
    speech I show.
 O Thou to whom no second be conjoined! ✿ A wretched lover seeks Thee in
    his woe.
 I have a hope my thoughts as true confirm; ✿ And heart that fainteth as
    right well canst trow.
 To lavish life is hardest thing that be, ✿ Yet easy an Thou bid me life
 But, an it be Thy will to save from stowre, ✿ Thou, O my Hope, to work
    this work hast power!

Then the man cast himself down from the belvedere; but Allah sent an
angel who bore him up on his wings and brought him down to the ground,
whole and without hurt or harm. Now when he found himself safe on the
ground, he thanked and praised Allah (to whom belong Majesty and Might!)
for His merciful protection of his person and his chastity; and he went
straight to his wife who had long expected him, and he empty-handed.
Then seeing him, she asked him why he had tarried and what was come of
that he had taken with him and why he returned empty-handed; whereupon
he told her of the temptation which had befallen him, and she said,
“Alhamdolillah—praised be God—for delivering thee from seduction and
intervening between thee and such calamity!” Then she added, “O man, the
neighbours use to see us light our oven every night; and, if they see us
fireless this night, they will know that we are destitute. Now it
behoveth in gratitude to Allah, that we hide our destitution and conjoin
the fast of this night to that of the past and continue it for the sake
of Allah Almighty.” So she rose and, filling the oven with wood, lighted
it, to baffle the curiosity of her women-neighbours, reciting these

 Now I indeed will hide desire and all repine; ✿ And light up this my
    fire that neighbours see no sign:
 Accept I what befalls by order of my Lord; ✿ Haply He too accept this
    humble act of mine.

——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that after the goodwife
had lit the fire to baffle the curiosity of her women-neighbours, she
and her husband made the Wuzu-ablution and stood up to pray, when
behold, one of the neighbours’ wives came and asked leave to take a
fire-brand from the oven. “Do what thou wilt with the oven,” answered
they; but, when she came to the fire, she cried out, saying, “Ho, such
an one (to the tray-maker’s wife) take up thy bread ere it burn!” Quoth
the wife to her husband, “Hearest thou what she saith?” Quoth he, “Go
and look.” So she went up to the oven, and behold, it was full of fine
bread and white. She took up the scones and carried them to her husband,
thanking Allah (to whom belong Majesty and Might!) for His abounding
good and great bounty; and they ate of the bread and drank water and
praised the Almighty. Then said the woman to her husband, “Come let us
pray to Allah the Most Highest, so haply He may vouchsafe us what shall
enable us to dispense with the weariness of working for daily bread and
devote ourselves wholly to worshipping and obeying Him.” The man rose in
assent and prayed, whilst his wife said, “Amen,” to his prayer, when the
roof clove in sunder and down fell a ruby, which lit the house with its
light. Hereat, they redoubled in praise and thanksgiving to Allah
praying what the Almighty willed,[478] and rejoiced at the ruby with
great joy. And the night being far spent, they lay down to sleep and the
woman dreamt that she entered Paradise and saw therein many chairs
ranged and stools set in rows. She asked what the seats were and it was
answered her, “These are the chairs of the prophets and those are the
stools of the righteous and the pious.” Quoth she, “Which is the stool
of my husband such an one?”; and it was said to her, “It is this.” So
she looked and seeing a hole in its side asked, “What may be this
hole?”; and the reply came, “It is the place of the ruby that dropped
upon you from your house-roof.” Thereupon she awoke, weeping and
bemoaning the defect in her husband’s stool among the seats of the
Righteous; so she told him the dream and said to him, “Pray Allah, O
man, that this ruby return to its place; for endurance of hunger and
poverty during our few days here were easier than a hole in thy chair
among the just in Paradise.”[479] Accordingly, he prayed to his Lord,
and lo! the ruby flew up to the roof and away whilst they looked at it.
And they ceased not from their poverty and their piety, till they went
to the presence of Allah, to whom be Honour and Glory! And they also
tell a tale of


Footnote 474:

  Arab. “Atbák”; these trays are made of rushes, and the fans of
  palm-leaves or tail-feathers.

Footnote 475:

  Except on the two great Festivals when fasting is forbidden. The only
  religion which has shown common sense in this matter is that of the
  Guebres or Parsis: they consider fasting neither meritorious nor
  lawful; and they honour Hormuzd by good living “because it keeps the
  soul stronger.” Yet even they have their food superstitions, _e.g._ in
  Gate No. xxiv.: “Beware of sin specially on the day thou eatest flesh,
  for flesh is the diet of Ahrimán.” And in India the Guebres have
  copied the Hindus in not slaughtering horned cattle for the table.

Footnote 476:

  Arab. “Jallábiyah,” a large-sleeved robe of coarse stuff worn by the

Footnote 477:

  His fear was that his body might be mutilated by the fall.

Footnote 478:

  The phrase means “offering up many and many a prayer.”

Footnote 479:

  A saying of Mohammed is recorded “Al-fakru fakhrí” (poverty is my
  pride!), intelligible in a man who never wanted for anything. Here he
  is diametrically opposed to Ali who honestly abused poverty; and the
  Prophet seems to have borrowed from Christendom, whose “Lazarus and
  Dives” shows a man sent to Hell because he enjoyed a very modified
  Heaven in this life and which suggested that one of the man’s greatest
  miseries is an ecclesiastical virtue—“Holy Poverty”—represented in the
  Church as a bride young and lovely. If a “rich man can hardly enter
  the kingdom” what must it be with a poor man whose conditions are far
  more unfavourable? Going to the other extreme we may say that Poverty
  is the root of all evil and the more so as it curtails man’s power of
  benefiting others. Practically I observe that those who preach and
  praise it the most, practise it the least willingly: the ecclesiastic
  has always some special reasons, a church or a school is wanted; but
  not the less he wishes for more money. In Syria this Holy Poverty
  leads to strange abuses. At Bayrut I recognised in most impudent
  beggars well-to-do peasants from the Kasrawán district, and presently
  found out that whilst their fields were under snow they came down to
  the coast, enjoyed a genial climate and lived on alms. When I asked
  them if they were not ashamed to beg, they asked me if I was ashamed
  of following in the footsteps of the Saviour and Apostles. How much
  wiser was Zoroaster who found in the Supreme Paradise (Minuwán-minu)
  “many persons, rich in gold and silver who had worshipped the Lord and
  had been grateful to Him.” (Dabistan i. 265.)

                      AL-HAJJAJ AND THE PIOUS MAN.

Al-Hajjaj bin Yusuf al-Sakafi had been long in pursuit of a certain man
of the notables, and when at last he was brought before him, he said, “O
enemy of Allah, He hath delivered thee over to me;” and cried, “Hale him
to prison and lay him by the heels in heavy fetters and build a closet
over him, that he may not come forth of it nor any go into him.” So they
bore him to jail and summoned the blacksmith with the irons; and every
time the smith gave a stroke with his hammer, the prisoner raised his
eyes to heaven and said, “Is not the whole Creation and the Empire
thereof His?”[480] Then the gaolers built the cage[481] over him and
left him therein, lorn and lone, whereupon longing and consternation
entered into him and the tongue of his case recited in extempore verse:—

 O Wish of wistful men, for Thee I yearn; ✿ My heart seeks grace of one
    no heart shall spurn.
 Unhidden from thy sight is this my case; ✿ And for one glance of thee I
    pine and burn.
 They jailed and tortured me with sorest pains:✿ Alas for lone one can no
    aid discern’!

 But, albe lone, I find Thy name befriends ✿ And cheers, though sleep to
    eyes shall ne’er return:
 An thou accept of me, I care for naught; ✿ And only Thou what’s in my
    heart canst learn!

Now when night fell dark, the gaoler left his watchmen to guard him and
went to his house; and on the morrow, when he came to the prison, he
found the fetters lying on the ground and the prisoner gone; whereat he
was affrighted and made sure of death. So he returned to his place and
bade his family farewell, after which he took in his sleeve his shroud
and the sweet herbs for his corpse, and went in to Al-Hajjáj. And as he
stood before the presence, the Governor smelt the perfumes and asked,
“What is that?” when the gaoler answered, “O my lord, it is I who have
brought it.” “And what moved thee to that?” enquired the Governor;
whereupon he told him his case,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventy-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the gaoler
told his case to Al-Hajjaj, the Governor cried, “Woe to thee! Didst thou
hear him say aught?” Answered the gaoler, “Yes! whilst the blacksmith
was hammering his irons, he ceased not to look up heavenwards and
say:—Is not the whole Creation and the Empire thereof His?” Rejoined
Al-Hajjaj, “Dost thou not know that He, on whom he called in thy
presence, delivered him in thine absence?” And the tongue of the case
recited on this theme:—

 O Lord, how many a grief from me hast driven ✿ Nor can I sit or stand
    without Thy hold:
 How many many things I cannot count, ✿ Thou sav’st from many many and

And they also tell a tale of


Footnote 480:

  Koran vii. 52.

Footnote 481:

  Arab. “Al-bayt” = the house. The Arabs had probably learned this
  pleasant mode of confinement from the Chinese whose _Kea_ or Cangue is
  well known. The Arabian form of it is “Ghull,” or portable pillory,
  which reprobates will wear on Judgment Day.


It reached the ears of a certain pious man that there abode in such a
town a blacksmith, who could put his hand into the fire and pull out the
iron red-hot, without the flames doing him aught of hurt.[482] So he set
out for the town in question and asked for the blacksmith; and, when the
man was shown to him, he watched him at work and saw him do as had been
reported to him. He waited till he had made an end of his day’s work;
then, going up to him, saluted him with the salam and said, “I would be
thy guest this night.” Replied the smith, “With gladness and goodly
gree!” and carried him to his place, where they supped together and lay
down to sleep. The guest watched, but saw no sign in his host of praying
through the night or of special devoutness and said in his mind, “Haply
he hideth himself from me.” So he lodged with him a second and a third
night, but found that he did not exceed the devotions prescribed by the
law and custom of the Prophet and rose but little in the dark hours to
pray. At last he said to him, “O my brother, I have heard of the gift
with which Allah hath favoured thee and have seen the truth of it with
mine eyes. Moreover, I have taken note of thine assiduity in religious
exercises, but find in thee no such piety as distinguisheth those who
work saintly miracles: whence, then, cometh this to thee?” “I will tell
thee,” answered the smith:—Know that I was once passionately enamoured
of a slave-girl and ofttimes sued her for love-liesse, but could not
prevail upon her, because she still held fast by her chastity. Presently
there came a year of drought and hunger and hardship; food failed and
there befel a sore famine. As I was sitting one day at home, somebody
knocked at the door; so I went out and behold, she was standing there;
and she said to me, “O my brother, I am sorely anhungered and I lift
mine eyes to thee, beseeching thee to feed me for Allah’s sake!” Quoth
I, “Wottest thou not how I love thee and what I have suffered for thy
sake? Now I will not give thee one bittock of bread except thou yield
thy person to me.” Quoth she, “Death, but not disobedience to the Lord!”
Then she went away and returned after two days with the same prayer for
food as before. I made her a like answer, and she entered and sat down
in my house being nigh upon death. I set food before her, whereupon her
eyes brimmed with tears and she cried, “Give me meat for the love of
Allah, to whom belong Honour and Glory!” But I answered, “Not so, by
Allah, except thou yield thyself to me.” Quoth she, “Better is death to
me than the wrath and wreak of Allah the Most Highest;” and she rose and
left the food untouched——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventy-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the man set
food before her, the woman said, “Give me meat for the love of Allah, to
whom be Honour and Glory!” But I answered, “Not so, by Allah, except
thou yield to me thy person.” Quoth she, “Better is death than the wrath
and wreak of Allah;” and she rose and left the food untouched and went
away repeating these couplets:—

 O Thou, the One, whose grace doth all the world embrace; ✿ Thine ears
    have heard, Thine eyes have seen my case!
 Privation and distress have dealt me heavy blows; ✿ The woes that weary
    me no utterance can trace.
 I am like one athirst who eyes the landscape’s eye, ✿ Yet may not drink
    a draught of streams that rail and race.
 My flesh would tempt me by the sight of savoury food ✿ Whose joys shall
    pass away and pangs maintain their place.

She then disappeared for two days, when she again came and knocked at
the door; so I went out to her, and lo! hunger had taken away her voice;
but, after a rest she said, “O my brother, I am worn out with want and
know not what to do, for I cannot show my face to any man but to thee.
Say, wilt thou feed me for the love of Allah Almighty?” But I answered,
“Not so, except thou yield to me thy person.” And she entered my house
and sat down. Now I had no food ready; but, when the meat was dressed
and I laid it in a saucer, behold, the grace of Almighty Allah entered
into me and I said to myself, “Out on thee! This woman, weak of wit and
faith, hath refrained from food till she can no longer, for stress of
hunger; and, while she refuseth time after time, thou canst not forbear
from disobedience to the Lord!” And I said, “O my God, I repent to Thee
of that which my flesh purposed!” Then I took the food and carrying it
to her, said, “Eat, for no harm shall betide thee: this is for the love
of Allah, to whom belong Honour and Glory!” Then she raised her eyes to
heaven and said, “O my God, if this man say sooth, I pray Thee forbid
fire to harm him in this world and the next, for Thou over all things
art Omnipotent and Prevalent in answering the prayer of the penitent!”
Then I left her and went to put out the fire in the brasier.[483] Now
the season was winter and the weather cold, and a live coal fell on my
body: but by the decree of Allah (to whom be Honour and Glory!) I felt
no pain and it became my conviction that her prayer had been answered.
So I took the coal in my hand, and it burnt me not; and going in to her,
I said, “Be of good cheer, for Allah hath granted thy prayer!”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventy-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the blacksmith
continued:—So I went in to her and said, “Be of good cheer, for Allah
hath granted thy prayer!” Then she dropped the morsel from her hand and
said, “O my God, now that Thou hast shown me my desire of him and hast
granted me my prayer for him, take Thou my soul, for Thou over all
things art Almighty!” And straightway He took her soul to Him, the mercy
of Allah be upon her! And the tongue of the case extemporised and spake
on this theme:—

 She prayed: the Lord of grace her prayer obeyed; ✿ And spared the
    sinner, who for sin had prayed:
 He showed her all she prayed Him to grant; ✿ And Death (as prayed she)
    her portion made:

 Unto his door she came and prayed for food, ✿ And sued his ruth for what
    her misery made:
 He leant to error following his lusts, ✿ And hoped to enjoy her as her
    wants persuade;
 But he knew little of what Allah willed; ✿ Nor was Repentance, though
    unsought, denayed.
 Fate comes to him who flies from Fate, O Lord, ✿ And lot and daily bread
    by Thee are weighed.

And they also tell of


Footnote 482:

  This commonest conjuring trick in the West becomes a miracle in the
  credulous East.

Footnote 483:

  Arab. “Kánún”; the usual term is Mankal (pron. Mangal) a pan of copper
  or brass. Some of these “chafing-dishes” stand four feet high and are
  works of art. Lane (M. E. chapt. iv) gives an illustration of the
  simpler kind, together with the “Azikí,” a smaller pan for heating
  coffee. See Night dxxxviii.


There was once, among the children of Israel, a man of the devout, for
piety acclaimed and for continence and asceticism en-famed, whose
prayers were ever granted and who by supplication obtained whatso he
wanted; and he was a wanderer in the mountains and was used to pass the
night in worship. Now Almighty Allah had subjected to him a cloud which
travelled with him wherever he went, and poured on him its
water-treasures in abundance that he might make his ablutions and drink.
After a long time when things were thus, his fervour somewhat abated,
whereupon Allah took the cloud away from him and ceased to answer his
prayers. On this account, great was his grief and long was his woe, and
he ceased not to regret the time of grace and the miracle vouchsafed to
him and to lament and bewail and bemoan himself, till he saw in a dream
one who said to him, “An thou wouldest have Allah restore to thee thy
cloud, seek out a certain King, in such a town, and beg him to pray for
thee: so will Allah (be He extolled and exalted!) give thee back thy
cloud and bespread it over thee by virtue of his pious prayers.” And he
began repeating these couplets:—

 Wend to that pious prayerful Emir, ✿ Who can with gladness thy condition
 An he pray Allah, thou shalt win thy wish; ✿ And heavy rain shall drop
    from welkin clear.
 He stands all Kings above in potent worth; ✿ Nor to compare with him
    doth aught appear:

 Near him thou soon shalt hap upon thy want, ✿ And see all joy and
    gladness draw thee near:
 Then cut the wolds and wilds unfounted till ✿ The goal thou goest for
    anigh shalt speer!

So the hermit set out for the town named to him in the dream; and,
coming thither after long travel, enquired for the King’s palace which
was duly shown to him. And behold, at the gate he found a slave-officer
sitting on a great chair and clad in gorgeous gear; so he stood to him
and saluted him; and he returned his salam and asked him, “What is thy
business?” Answered the devotee, “I am a wronged man, and come to submit
my case to the King.” Quoth the officer, “Thou hast no access to him
this day; for he hath appointed unto petitioners and enquirers one day
in every seven” (naming the day), “on which they may go in to him; so
wend thy ways in welfare till then.” The hermit was vexed with the King
for thus veiling himself from the folk and said in thought, “How shall
this man be a saint of the saints of Allah (to whom belong Majesty and
Might!) and he on this wise?” Then he went away and awaited the
appointed day. Now (quoth he) when it came, I repaired to the palace,
where I found a great number of folk at the gate, expecting admission;
and I stood with them, till there came out a Wazir robed in gorgeous
raiment and attended by guards and slaves, who said, “Let those, who
have petitions to present, enter.” So I entered with the rest and found
the King seated facing his officers and grandees who were ranged
according to their several ranks and degrees. The Wazir took up his post
and brought forward the petitioners, one by one, till it came to my
turn, when the King looked on me and said, “Welcome to the ‘Lord of the
Cloud’! Sit thee down till I make leisure for thee.” I was confounded at
his words and confessed his dignity and superiority; and, when the King
had answered the petitioners and had made an end with them, he rose and
dismissed his Wazirs and Grandees; then, taking my hand he led me to the
door of the private palace, where we found a black slave, splendidly
arrayed, with helm on head, and on his right hand and his left, bows and
coats of mail. He rose to the King; and, hastening to obey his orders
and forestall his wishes, opened the door. We went in, hand in hand,
till we came to a low wicket, which the King himself opened and led me
into a ruinous place of frightful desolation and thence passed into a
chamber, wherein was naught but a prayer-carpet, an ewer for ablution
and some mats of palm-leaves. Here the King doffed his royal robes and
donned a coarse gown of white wool and a conical bonnet of felt. Then he
sat down and making me sit, called out to his wife, “Ho, such an one!”
and she answered from within saying, “Here am I.” Quoth he, “Knowest
thou who is our guest to-day?” Replied she, “Yes, it is the ‘Lord of the
Cloud.’” The King said, “Come forth: it mattereth not for him.” And
behold, there entered a woman, as she were a vision, with a face that
beamed like the new moon; and she wore a gown and veil of wool.——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventy-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the King
called to his wife, she came forth from the inner room; and her face
beamed like the new moon; and she wore a gown and a veil of wool. Then
said the King, “O my brother, dost thou desire to hear our story or that
we should pray for thee and dismiss thee?” Answered the hermit; “Nay, I
wish to hear the tale of you twain, for that to me were preferable.”
Said the King, “My forefathers handed down the throne, one to the other,
and it descended from great one to great one, in unbroken succession,
till the last died and it came to me. Now Allah had made this hateful to
me, for I would fain have gone awandering over earth and left the folk
to their own affairs; but I feared lest they should fall into confusion
and anarchy and misgovernment so as to swerve from divine law, and the
union of the Faith be broken up. Wherefore, abandoning my own plans, I
took the kingship and appointed to every head of them a regular stipend;
and donned the royal robes; and posted slave-officers at the doors, as a
terror to the dishonest and for the defence of honest folk and the
maintenance of law and limitations. Now when free of this, I entered
this place and, doffing my royal habit, donned these clothes thou seest;
and this my cousin, the daughter of my father’s brother, hath agreed
with me to renounce the world and helpeth me to serve the Lord. So we
are wont to weave these palm-leaves and earn, during the day, a
wherewithal to break our fast at nightfall; and we have lived on this
wise nigh upon forty years. Abide thou with us (so Allah have mercy on
thee!) till we sell our mats; and thou shalt sup and sleep with us this
night and on the morrow wend thy ways with that thou wishest,
Inshallah!” So he tarried with them till the end of the day, when there
came a boy five years old who took the mats they had made and carrying
them to the market, sold them for a carat;[484] and with this bought
bread and beans and returned with them to the King. The hermit broke his
fast and lay down to sleep with them; but in the middle of the night,
they both arose and fell to praying and weeping. When daybreak was near,
the King said, “O my God, this Thy servant beseecheth Thee to return him
his cloud; and to do this Thou art able; so, O my God, let him see his
prayer granted and restore him his cloud.” The Queen amen’d to his
orisons and behold, the cloud grew up in the sky; whereupon the King
gave the hermit joy and the man took leave of them and went away, the
cloud companying him as of old. And whatsoever he required of Allah
after this, in the names of the pious King and Queen, He granted it
without fail and the man made thereon these couplets:—

 My Lord hath servants fain of piety; ✿ Hearts in the Wisdom-garden
    ranging free:
 Their bodies’ lusts at peace, and motionless ✿ For breasts that bide in
    purest secresy.
 Thou seest all silent, awesome of their Lord, ✿ For hidden things unseen
    and seen they see.

And they tell a tale of


Footnote 484:

  See vol. iii., p. 239. The system is that of the Roman As and Unciæ.
  Here it would be the twenty-fourth part of a dinar or miskal;
  something under 5d. I have already noted that all Moslem rulers are
  religiously bound to some handicraft, if it be only making toothpicks.
  Mohammed abolished kingship proper as well as priestcraft.


The Commander of the Faithful, Omar bin al-Khattáb (whom Allah accept!),
once levied for holy war an army of Moslems, to encounter the foe before
Damascus, and they laid close siege to one of the Christians’
strongholds. Now there were amongst the Moslems two men, brothers, whom
Allah had gifted with fire and bold daring against the enemy; so that
the commander of the besieged fortress said to his chiefs and braves,
“Were but yonder two Moslems ta’en or slain, I would warrant you against
the rest of their strain.” Wherefore they left not to set for them all
manner of toils and snares and ceased not to manœuvre and lie in wait
and ambush for them, till they took one of them prisoner and slew the
other who died a martyr. They carried the captive to the Captain of the
fort, who looked at him and said, “Verily, to kill this man were indeed
a pity; but his return to the Moslem would be a calamity.”—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventy-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the enemy
carried their Moslem captive before the Captain of the fort, the
Christian looked at him and said, “Verily to kill this man were a pity
indeed; but his return to the Moslem would be a calamity. Oh that he
might be brought to embrace the Nazarene Faith and be to us an aid and
an arm!” Quoth one of his Patrician Knights, “O Emir, I will tempt him
to abjure his faith and on this wise: we know that the Arabs are much
addicted to women, and I have a daughter, a perfect beauty, whom when he
sees, he will be seduced by her.” Quoth the Captain, “I give him into
thy charge.” So he carried him to his place and clad his daughter in
raiment, such as added to her beauty and loveliness. Then he brought the
Moslem into the room and set before him food and made the fair girl
stand in his presence, as she were a handmaid obedient to her lord and
awaiting his orders that she might do his bidding. When the Moslem saw
the evil sent down upon him, he commended himself to Allah Almighty and
closing his eyes, applied himself to worship and to reciting the Koran.
Now he had a pleasant voice and a piercing wit; and the Nazarene damsel
presently loved him with passionate love and pined for him with extreme
repine. This lasted seven days, at the end of which she said to herself,
“Would to Heaven he would admit me into the Faith of Al-Islam!” And the
tongue of her case recited these couplets:—

 Wilt turn thy face from heart that’s all thine own, ✿ This heart thy
    ransom and this soul thy wone?

 I’m ready home and kin to quit for aye, ✿ And every Faith for that of
    sword[485] disown:
 I testify that Allah hath no mate: ✿ This proof is stablished and this
    truth is known.
 Haply shall deign He union grant with one ✿ Averse, and hearten heart
 For ofttimes door erst shut, is opened wide, ✿ And after evil case all
    good is shown.

At last her patience failed her and her breast was straitened and she
threw herself on the ground before him, saying, “I conjure thee by thy
Faith, that thou give ear to my words!” Asked he, “What are they?” and
she answered, “Expound unto me Al-Islam.” So he expounded to her the
tenets of the Faith, and she became a Moslemah, after which she was
circumcised[486] and he taught her to pray. Then said she to him, “O my
brother, I did but embrace Al-Islam for thy sake and to win thy
favours.” Quoth he, “The law of Al-Islam forbiddeth sexual commerce save
after a marriage before two legal witnesses, and a dowry and a guardian
are also requisite. Now I know not where to find witnesses or friend or
parapherne; but, an thou can contrive to bring us out of this place, I
may hope to make the land of Al-Islam, and pledge myself to thee that
none other than thou in all Al-Islam shall be wife to me.” Answered she,
“I will manage that”; and, calling her father and mother, said to them,
“Indeed this Moslem’s heart is softened and he longeth to enter the
faith, so I will grant him that which he desireth of my person; but he
saith:—It befitteth me not to do this in a town where my brother was
slain. Could I but get outside it my heart would be solaced and I would
do that which is wanted of me. Now there is no harm in letting me go
forth with him to another town, and I will be a surety to you both and
to the Emir for that which ye wish of him.” Therefore her father went to
their Captain and told him this, whereat he joyed with exceeding joy and
bade him carry them forth to a village that she named. So they went out
and made the village where they abode the rest of their day, and when
night fell, they got ready for the march and went their way, even as
saith the poet:—

 “The time of parting,” cry they, “draweth nigh”: ✿ “How oft this
    parting-threat?” I but reply:
 I’ve naught to do but cross the wild and wold ✿ And, mile by mile, o’er
    fount-less wastes to fly,
 If the belovèd seek another land ✿ Sons of the road, whereso they wend,
    wend I.
 I make desire direct me to their side, ✿ The guide to show me where the
    way doth lie.

And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventy-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the prisoner and
the lady abode in the village the rest of their day and, when night
fell, made ready for the march and went upon their way; and travelled
all night without stay or delay. The young Moslem, mounting a swift
blood-horse and taking up the maiden behind him, ceased not devouring
the ground till it was bright morning, when he turned aside with her
from the highway and, alighting, they made the Wuzu-ablution and prayed
the dawn-prayer. Now as they were thus engaged behold, they heard the
clank of swords and clink of bridles and men’s voices and tramp of
horse; whereupon he said to her, “Ho, such an one, the Nazarenes are
after us! What shall we do?: the horse is so jaded and broken down that
he cannot stir another step.” Exclaimed she, “Woe to thee! art thou then
afraid and affrighted?” “Yes,” answered he; and she said, “What didst
thou tell me of the power of thy Lord and His readiness to succour those
who succour seek? Come, let us humble ourselves before Him and beseech
Him: haply He shall grant us His succour and endue us with His grace,
extolled and exalted be He!” Quoth he, “By Allah, thou sayst well!” So
they began humbling themselves and supplicating Almighty Allah and he
recited these couplets:—

 Indeed I hourly need thy choicest aid, ✿ And should, though crown were
    placed upon my head:
 Thou art my chiefest want, and if my hand ✿ Won what it wisheth, all my
    wants were sped.
 Thou hast not anything withholdest Thou; ✿ Like pouring rain Thy grace
    is showerèd:
 I’m shut therefrom by sins of me, yet Thou, ✿ O Clement, deignest
    pardon-light to shed.
 O Care-Dispeller, deign dispel my grief! ✿ None can, save Thou, dispel a
    grief so dread.

Whilst he was praying and she was saying, “Amen,” and the thunder of
horse-tramp nearing them, lo! the brave heard the voice of his dead
brother, the martyr, speaking and saying, “O my brother, fear not, nor
grieve! for the host whose approach thou hearest is the host of Allah
and his Angels, whom He hath sent to serve as witnesses to your
marriage. Of a truth Allah hath made His Angels glorify you and He
bestoweth on you the meed of the meritorious and the martyrs; and He
hath rolled up the earth for you as it were a rug so that, by morning,
you will be in the mountains of Al-Medinah. And thou, when thou
foregatherest with Omar bin al-Khattab (of whom Allah accept!) give him
my salutation and say to him:—Allah abundantly requite thee for
Al-Islam, because thou hast counselled faithfully and hast striven
diligently.” Thereupon the Angels lifted up their voices in salutation
to him and his bride, saying, “Verily, Almighty Allah appointed her in
marriage to thee two thousand years before the creation of your father
Adam (with whom be peace evermore!).” Then joy and gladness and peace
and happiness came upon the twain; confidence was confirmed and
established was the guidance of the pious pair. So when dawn appeared,
they prayed the accustomed prayer and fared forward. Now it was the wont
of Omar son of Al-Khattab (Allah accept him!) to rise for morning-prayer
in the darkness before dawn and at times he would stand in the
prayer-niche with two men behind him, and begin reciting the Chapter
entitled “Cattle”[487] or that entitled Women;[488] whereupon the
sleeper awoke and he who was making his Wuzu-ablution accomplished it
and he who was afar came to prayer; nor had he made an end of the first
bow, ere the mosque was full of folk; then he would pray his second bow
quickly, repeating a short chapter. But, on that morning he hurried over
both first and second inclinations, repeating in each a short chapter;
then, after the concluding salutation, turning to his companions, he
said to them, “Come, let us fare forth to meet the bride and
bridegroom”; at which they wondered, not understanding his words. But he
went out and they followed him, till they came to the gate of the city,
where they met the young Moslem who, when the day broke and the
standards of Al-Medinah appeared to him, had pushed forward for the gate
closely followed by his bride. There he was met by Omar who bade make a
marriage-feast; and the Moslems came and ate. Then the young Moslem went
in unto his bride and Almighty Allah vouchsafed him children,——And
Shahrazad, perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

      Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventy-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Omar (on whom be
peace!) bade make a marriage-feast; and the Moslems came and ate. Then
the young Moslem went in unto his bride and Almighty Allah vouchsafed
him children, who fought in the Lord’s way and preserved genealogies,
for they gloried therein. And how excellent is what is said on such

 I saw thee weep before the gates and ‘plain, ✿ Whilst only curious wight
    reply would deign:
 Hath eye bewitcht thee, or hath evil lot ✿ ‘Twixt thee and door of
    friend set bar of bane?
 Wake up this day, O wretch, persist in prayer, ✿ Repent as wont repent
    departed men.
 Haply shall wash thy sins Forgiveness-showers; ✿ And on thine erring
    head some ruth shall rain:
 And prisoner shall escape despite his bonds; ✿ And slave from thraldom
    freedom shall attain.

And they ceased not to be in all solace and delight of life, till there
came to them the Destroyer of delights and the Sunderer of societies.
And a tale is told by Sídi Ibrahim bin Al-Khawwás[489] (on whom be the
mercy of Allah!) concerning himself and


Footnote 485:

  Al-Islam, where salvation is found under the shade of the swords.

Footnote 486:

  Moslems like the Classics (Aristotle and others) hold the clitoris
  (_Zambúr_) to be the sedes et scaturigo veneris which, says Sonnini,
  is mere profanity. In the babe it protrudes beyond the labiæ and
  snipping off the head forms female circumcision. This rite is supposed
  by Moslems to have been invented by Sarah who so mutilated Hagar for
  jealousy and was afterwards ordered by Allah to have herself
  circumcised at the same time as Abraham. It is now (or should be)
  universal in Al-Islam and no Arab would marry a girl “unpurified” by
  it. Son of an “uncircumcised” mother (Ibn al-bazrá) is a sore insult.
  As regards the popular idea that Jewish women were circumcised till
  the days of Rabbi Gershom (A.D. 1000) who denounced it as a scandal to
  the Gentiles, the learned Prof. H. Graetz informs me, with some
  indignation, that the rite was never practised and that the great
  Rabbi contended only against polygamy. Female circumcision, however,
  is I believe the rule amongst some outlying tribes of Jews. The rite
  is the proper complement of male circumcision, evening the
  sensitiveness of the genitories by reducing it equally in both sexes:
  an uncircumcised woman has the venereal orgasm much sooner and oftener
  than a circumcised man, and frequent coitus would injure her health;
  hence I believe, despite the learned historian, that it is practised
  by some Eastern Jews. “Excision” is universal amongst the negroids of
  the Upper Nile (Werne), the Somál and other adjacent tribes. The
  operator, an old woman, takes up the instrument, a knife or
  razor-blade fixed into a wooden handle, and with three sweeps cuts off
  the labia and the head of the clitoris. The parts are then sewn up
  with a pack-needle and a thread of sheepskin; and in Dar-For a tin
  tube is inserted for the passage of urine. Before marriage the
  bridegroom trains himself for a month on beef, honey and milk; and, if
  he can open his bride with the natural weapon, he is a sworder to whom
  no woman in the tribe can deny herself. If he fail, he tries
  penetration with his fingers and by way of last resort whips out his
  whittle and cuts the parts open. The sufferings of the first few
  nights must be severe. The few Somáli prostitutes who practised at
  Aden always had the labiæ and clitoris excised and the skin showing
  the scars of coarse sewing. The moral effect of female circumcision is
  peculiar. While it diminishes the heat of passion it increases
  licentiousness, and breeds a debauchery of mind far worse than bodily
  unchastity, because accompanied by a peculiar cold cruelty and a taste
  for artificial stimulants to “luxury.” It is the sexlessness of a
  spayed canine imitated by the suggestive brain of humanity.

Footnote 487:

  Koran vi. so called because certain superstitions about Cattle are
  therein mentioned.

Footnote 488:

  Koran iv. So called because it treats of marriages, divorces, etc.

Footnote 489:

  Sídi (contracted from Sayyidí = my lord) is a title still applied to
  holy men in Marocco and the Maghrib; on the East African coast it is
  assumed by negro and negroid Moslems, _e.g._ Sidi Mubárak Bombay; and
  “Seedy boy” is the Anglo-Indian term for a Zanzibar-man. “Khawwás” is
  one who weaves palm-leaves (Khos) into baskets, mats, etc.: here,
  however, it may be an inherited name.


My spirit urged me, once upon a time, to go forth into the country of
the Infidels; and I strove with it and struggled to put away from me
this inclination; but it would not be rejected. So I fared forth and
journeyed about the land of the Unbelievers and traversed it in all its
parts; for divine grace enveloped me and heavenly protection encompassed
me, so that I met not a single Nazarene but he turned away his eyes and
drew off from me, till I came to a certain great city at whose gate I
found a gathering of black slaves, clad in armour and bearing iron maces
in their hands. When they saw me, they rose to their feet and asked me,
“Art thou a leach?”; and I answered, “Yes.” Quoth they, “Come speak to
our King,” and carried me before their ruler, who was a handsome
personage of majestic presence. When I stood before him, he looked at me
and said, “Art a physician, thou?” “Yes,” quoth I; and quoth he to his
officers, “Carry him to her, and acquaint him with the condition before
he enter.” So they took me out and said to me, “Know that the King hath
a daughter, and she is stricken with a sore disease, which no doctor
hath been able to cure: and no leach goeth in to her and treateth,
without healing her, but the King putteth him to death. So bethink thee
what thou seest fitting to do.” I replied, “The King drove me to her; so
carry me to her.” Thereupon they brought me to her door and knocked; and
behold, I heard her cry out from within, saying, “Admit to me the
physician, lord of the wondrous secret!” And she began reciting:

 Open the door! the leach now draweth near; ✿ And in my soul a wondrous
    secret speer:
 How many of the near far distant are![490] ✿ How many distant far are
    nearest near!
 I was in strangerhood amidst you all: ✿ But willed the Truth[491] my
    solace should appear.
 Joined us the potent bonds of Faith and Creed; ✿ We met as dearest fere
    greets dearest fere:
 He sued for interview whenas pursued ✿ The spy, and blamed us envy’s
    jibe and jeer:
 Then leave your chiding and from blame desist, ✿ For fie upon you! not a
    word I’ll hear.
 I care for naught that disappears and fleets; ✿ My care’s for Things nor
    fleet nor disappear.

And lo! a Shaykh, a very old man, opened the door in haste and said to
me, “Enter.” So I entered and found myself in a chamber strewn with
sweet-scented herbs and with a curtain drawn across one corner, from
behind which came a sound of groaning and grame, weak as from an
emaciated frame. I sat down before the curtain and was about to offer my
salam when I bethought me of his words (whom Allah save and assain!),
“Accost not a Jew nor a Christian with the salam salutation;[492] and,
when ye meet them in the way, constrain them to the straitest part
thereof.” So I withheld my salutation, but she cried out from behind the
curtain, saying, “Where is the salutation of Unity and Indivisibility, O
Khawwás?” I was astonished at her speech and asked, “How knowest thou
me?”; whereto she answered, “When the heart and thoughts are whole, the
tongue speaketh eloquently from the secret recesses of the soul. I
begged Him yesterday to send me one of His saints, at whose hands I
might have deliverance, and behold, it was cried to me from the dark
places of my house:—Grieve not; for we soon will send thee Ibrahim the
Basket-maker.” Then I asked her, “What of thee?” and she answered, “It
is now four years since there appeared to me the Manifest Truth, and He
is the Relator and the Ally, and the Uniter and the Sitter-by; whereupon
my folk looked askance upon me with an evil eye and taxed me with
insanity and suspected me of depravity, and there came not in to me
doctor but terrified me, nor visitor but confounded me.” Quoth I, “And
who led thee to the knowledge of what thou wottest?” Quoth she, “The
manifest signs and visible portents of Allah; and, when the path is
patent to thee, thou espiest with thine own eyes both proof and prover.”
Now whilst we were talking, behold, in came the old man appointed to
guard her and said, “What doth thy doctor?”; and she replied, “He
knoweth the hurt and hath hit upon the healing.”——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventy-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Shaykh,
her guardian, went in to her he said, “What doth thy doctor?”; and she
replied, “He knoweth the hurt and hath hit upon the healing.” Hereupon
he manifested joy and gladness and accosted me with a cheerful
countenance, then went and told the King, who enjoined to treat me with
all honour and regard. So I visited her daily for seven days, at the end
of which time she said to me, “O Abú Ishák, when shall be our flight to
the land of Al-Islam?” “How canst thou go forth,” replied I, “and who
would dare to aid thee?” Rejoined she, “He who sent thee to me, driving
thee as it were;” and I observed, “Thou sayest sooth.” So when the
morrow dawned, we fared forth by the city-gate and all eyes were veiled
from us, by commandment of Him who when He desireth aught, saith to it,
“Be,” and it becometh;[493] so that I journeyed with her in safety to
Meccah, where she made a home hard by the Holy House of Allah and lived
seven years; till the appointed day of her death. The earth of Meccah
was her tomb, and never saw I any more steadfast in prayer and fasting
than she, Allah send down upon her His mercies and have compassion on
him who saith:—

 When they to me had brought the leach (and surely showed ✿ The signs of
    flowing tears and pining malady),
 The face-veil he withdrew from me, and ‘neath it naught ✿ Save breath of
    one unsouled, unbodied, could he see.
 Quoth he, “This be a sickness Love alone shall cure; ✿ Love hath a
    secret from all guess of man wide free.”
 Quoth they, “An folk ignore what here there be with him ✿ Nature of ill
    and eke its symptomology,”
 How then shall medicine work a cure? At this quoth I ✿ “Leave me alone;
    I have no guessing specialty.”

And they tell a tale of


Footnote 490:

  _i.e._ in spirit; the “strangers yet” of poor dear Richard Monckton
  Milnes, Lord Houghton.

Footnote 491:

  Al-Hakk = the Truth, one of the ninety-nine names of Allah.

Footnote 492:

  The Moslem is still unwilling to address Salám (Peace be with you) to
  the Christian, as it is obligatory (Farz) to a Moslem (Koran, chapt.
  iv. and lxviii.). He usually evades the difficulty by saluting the
  nearest Moslem or by a change of words Allah Yahdí-k (Allah direct
  thee to the right way) or “Peace be upon us and the righteous
  worshippers of Allah” (not you) or Al-Samm (for Salam) alayka = poison
  to thee. The idea is old: Alexander of Alexandria in his circular
  letter describes the Arian heretics as “men whom it is not lawful to
  salute or to bid God-speed.”

Footnote 493:

  Koran xxxvi. 82. I have before noted that this famous phrase was
  borrowed from the Hebrews, who borrowed it from the Egyptians.


A certain Prophet[494] made his home for worship on a lofty mountain, at
whose foot was a spring of running water, and he was wont to sit by day
on the summit, that no man might see him, calling upon the name of Allah
the Most Highest and watching those who frequented the spring. One day,
as he sat looking upon the fountain, behold, he espied a horseman who
came up and dismounted thereby and taking a bag from his neck, set it
down beside him, after which he drank of the water and rested awhile,
then he rode away, leaving behind him the bag which contained gold
pieces. Presently up came another man to drink of the spring, who saw
the bag and finding it full of money took it up; then, after satisfying
his thirst, he made off with it in safety. A little after came a
wood-cutter wight with a heavy load of fuel on his back, and sat down by
the spring to drink, when lo! back came the first horseman in great
trouble and asked him, “Where is the bag which was here?” and when he
answered, “I know nothing of it,” the rider drew his sword and smote him
and slew him. Then he searched his clothes, but found naught; so he left
him and wended his ways. Now when the Prophet saw this, he said, “O
Lord, one man hath taken a thousand dinars and another man hath been
slain unjustly.” But Allah answered him, saying, “Busy thyself with thy
devotions, for the ordinance of the universe is none of thine affair.
The father of this horseman had violently despoiled of a thousand dinars
the father of the second horseman; so I gave the son possession of his
sire’s money. As for the wood-cutter, he had slain the horseman’s
father, wherefore I enabled the son to obtain retribution for himself.”
Then cried the Prophet, “There is none other god than Thou! Glory be to
Thee only! Verily, Thou art the Knower of Secrets.”[495]——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Seventy-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King that when the Prophet
was bidden by inspiration of Allah to busy himself with his devotions
and learned the truth of the case, he cried, “There is none other god
but Thou! Glory be to Thee only! Verily, Thou and Thou alone wottest
hidden things.” Furthermore, one of the poets hath made these verses on
the matter:—

 The Prophet saw whatever eyes could see, ✿ And fain of other things
    enquirèd he;
 And, when his eyes saw things misunderstood, ✿ Quoth he, “O Lord, this
    slain from sin was free.
 This one hath won him wealth withouten work; ✿ Albe appeared he garbed
    in penury.
 And that in joy of life was slain, although ✿ O man’s Creator free of
    sin he be.”
 God answered “‘Twas his father’s good thou saw’st ✿ Him take; by
    heirship not by roguery;

 Yon woodman too that horseman’s sire had slain; ✿ Whose son avenged him
    with just victory:
 Put off, O slave of Me, this thought for I ✿ In men have set mysterious
 Bow to Our Law and humble thee, and learn ✿ For good and evil issues Our

And a certain pious man hath told us the tale of


Footnote 494:

  The story of Moses and Khizr has been noticed before. See Koran chapt.
  xviii. 64 _et seq._ It is also related, says Lane (ii. 642), by
  Al-Kazwíni in the Ajáib al-Makhlúkát. This must be “The Angel and the
  Hermit” in the Gesta Romanorum, Tale lxxx. which possibly gave rise to
  Parnell’s Hermit; and Tale cxxvii. “Of Justice and Equity.” The Editor
  says it “contains a beautiful lesson:” I can find only excellent
  excuses for “doing evil that good may come of it.”

Footnote 495:

  Koran chapt. v. 108.

Footnote 496:

  The doggrel is phenomenal.


I was once a ferryman on the Nile and used to ply between the eastern
and the western banks. Now one day, as I sat in my boat, there came up
to me an old man of a bright and beaming countenance, who saluted me and
I returned his greeting; and he said to me, “Wilt thou ferry me over for
the love of Allah Almighty?” I answered, “Yes,” and he continued, “Wilt
thou moreover give me food for Allah’s sake?”; to which again I
answered, “With all my heart.” So he entered the boat and I rowed him
over to the eastern side, remarking that he was clad in a patched gown
and carried a gourd-bottle and a staff. When he was about to land, he
said to me, “I desire to lay on thee a heavy trust.” Quoth I, “What is
it?” Quoth he, “It hath been revealed to me that my end is nearhand and
that to-morrow about noon thou wilt come and find me dead under yonder
tree. Wash me and wrap me in the shroud thou wilt see under my head and
after thou hast prayed over me, bury me in this sandy ground and take my
gown and gourd and staff, which do thou deliver to one who shall come
and demand them of thee.” I marvelled at his words, and I slept there.
On the morrow I awaited till noon the event he had announced, and then I
forgot what he had said till near the hour of afternoon-prayer, when I
remembered it and hastening to the appointed place, found him under the
tree, dead, with a new shroud under his head, exhaling a fragrance of
musk. So I washed him and shrouded him and prayed over him, then dug a
hole in the sand and buried him, after I had taken his ragged gown and
bottle and staff, with which I crossed the Nile to the western side and
there nighted. As soon as morning dawned and the city gate opened, I
sighted a young man known to me as a loose fellow, clad in fine clothes
and his hands stained with Henna, who said to me, “Art thou not such an
one?” “Yes,” answered I; and he said, “Give me the trust.” Quoth I,
“What is that?” Quoth he, “The gown, the gourd and the staff.” I asked
him, “Who told thee of them?” and he answered, “I know nothing save that
I spent yesternight at the wedding of one of my friends singing and
carousing till daylight, when I lay me down to sleep and take my rest;
and behold, there stood by me a personage who said, “Verily Allah
Almighty hath taken such a saint to Himself and hath appointed thee to
fill his place; so go thou to a certain person (naming the ferryman),
and take of him the dead man’s gown and bottle and staff, for he left
them with him for thee.”” So I brought them out and gave them to him;
whereupon he doffed his clothes and, donning the gown, went his way and
left me.[497] And when the glooms closed around me, I fell a-weeping;
but, that night, while sleeping I saw the Lord of Holiness (glorified
and exalted be He!) in a dream saying, “O my servant, is it grievous to
thee that I have granted to one of My servants to return to Me? Indeed,
this is of My bounty, that I vouchsafe to whom I will, for I over all
things am Almighty.” So I repeated these couplets:—

 Lover with lovèd[498] loseth will and aim; ✿ All choice (an couldst thou
    know) were sinful shame.
 Or grant He favour and with union grace, ✿ Or from thee turn away, He
    hath no blame.
 An from such turning thou no joy enjoy ✿ Depart! the place for thee no
    place became.
 Or canst His near discern not from His far? ✿ Then Love’s in vain and
    thou’rt a-rear and lame.
 If pine for Thee afflict my sprite, or men ✿ Hale me to death, the rein
    Thy hand shall claim!

 So turn Thee to or fro, to me ‘tis one; ✿ What Thou ordainest none shall
    dare defame:
 My love hath naught of aim but Thine approof ✿ And if Thou say we part I
    say the same.

And of the tales they tell is one concerning


Footnote 497:

  He went in wonder and softened heart to see the miracle of saintly

Footnote 498:

  In Sufistical parlance, the creature is the lover and the Creator the
  Beloved: worldly existence is Disunion, parting, severance; and the
  life to come is Reunion. The basis of the idea is the human soul being
  a divinæ particula auræ, a disjoined molecule from the Great Spirit,
  imprisoned in a jail of flesh; and it is so far valuable that it has
  produced a grand and pathetic poetry; but Common Sense asks, Where is
  the proof? And Reason wants to know, What does it all mean?


There was once a notable of the Children of Israel, a man of wealth who
had a pious and blessed son. When his last hour drew nigh, his son sat
down at his head and said to him, “O my lord, give me an injunction.”
Quoth the father, “O dear son, I charge thee, swear not by Allah or
truly or falsely.” Then he died and certain lewd fellows of the Children
of Israel heard of the charge he had laid on his son and began coming to
the latter and saying, “Thy father had such and such monies of mine, and
thou knowest it; so give me what was entrusted to him or else make oath
that there was no trust.” The good son would not disobey his sire’s
injunction, so gave them all they claimed; and they ceased not to deal
thus with him, till his wealth was spent and he fell into straitest
predicament. Now the young man had a pious and blessed wife, who had
borne him two little sons; so he said to her, “The folk have multiplied
their demands on me and, while I had the wherewithal to free myself of
debt, I rendered it freely; but naught is now left us, and if others
make demands upon me, we shall be in absolute distress, I and thou; our
best way were to save ourselves by fleeing to some place, where none
knoweth us, and earn our bread among the lower of the folk.”
Accordingly, he took ship with her and his two children, knowing not
whither he should wend; but, “When Allah judgeth, there is none to
reverse His judgment;”[499] and quoth the tongue of the case:—

 O flier from thy home when foes affright! ✿ Whom led to weal and
    happiness such flight,
 Grudge not this exile when he flees abroad ✿ Where he on wealth and
    welfare may alight.
 An pearls for ever did abide in shell, ✿ The kingly crown they ne’er had
    deckt and dight.

The ship was wrecked, yet the man saved himself on a plank and his wife
and children also saved themselves, but on other planks. The waves
separated them and the wife was cast up in one country and one of the
boys in another. The second son was picked up by a ship, and the surges
threw the father on a desert island, where he landed and made the
Wuzu-ablution. Then he called the prayer-call——And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eightieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the man
landed upon the island, he made the Wuzu-ablution to free himself from
the impurities of the sea and called the call to prayer and stood up to
his devotions, when, behold, there came forth of the sea creatures of
various kinds and prayed with him. When he had finished, he went up to a
tree and stayed his hunger with its fruits; after which he found a
spring of water and drank thereof and praised Allah, to whom be honour
and glory! He abode thus three days and whenever he stood up to pray,
the sea-creatures came out and prayed in the same manner as he prayed.
Now after the third day, he heard a voice crying aloud and saying, “O
thou just man, and pious, who didst so honour thy father and revere the
decrees of thy Lord, grieve not, for Allah (be He extolled and exalted!)
shall restore to thee all which left thy hand. In this isle are hoards
and monies and things of price which the Almighty willeth thou shalt
inherit, and they are in such a part of this place. So bring thou them
to light; and verily, we will send ships unto thee; and do thou bestow
charity on the folk and bid them to thee.” So he sought out that place,
and the Lord discovered to him the treasures in question. Then ships
began resorting to him, and he gave abundant largesse to the crews,
saying to them, “Be sure ye direct the folk unto me and I will give them
such and such a thing and appoint to them this and that.” Accordingly,
there came folk from all parts and places, nor had ten years passed over
him ere the island was peopled and the man became its King.[500] No one
came to him but he entreated him with munificence, and his name was
noised abroad, throughout the length and breadth of the earth. Now his
elder son had fallen into the hands of a man who reared him and taught
him polite accomplishments; and, in like manner, the younger was adopted
by one who gave him a good education and brought him up in the ways of
merchants. The wife also happened upon a trader who entrusted to her his
property and made a covenant with her that he would not deal dishonestly
by her, but would aid her to obey Allah (to whom belong Majesty and
Might!); and he used to make her the companion of his voyages and his
travels. Now the elder son heard the report of the King and resolved to
visit him, without knowing what he was; so he went to him and was well
received by the King, who made him his secretary. Presently the other
son heard of the King’s piety and justice and was also taken into his
service as a steward. Then the brothers abode awhile, neither knowing
the other, till it chanced that the merchant, in whose home was their
mother, also hearing of the King’s righteous and generous dealing with
the lieges, freighted a ship with rich stuffs and other excellent
produce of the land, and taking the woman with him, set sail for the
island. He made it in due course and landing, presented himself with his
gift before the King; who rejoiced therein with exceeding joy and
ordered him a splendid return-present. Now, there were, among the gifts,
certain aromatic roots of which he would have the merchant acquaint him
with the names and uses; so he said to him, “Abide with us this
night.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighty-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the King
said, “Abide with us this night,” the merchant replied, “We have in the
ship one to whom I have promised to entrust the care of her to none save
myself; and the same is a holy woman whose prayers have brought me weal
and I have felt the blessing of her counsels.” Rejoined the King, “I
will send her some trusty men, who shall pass the night in the ship and
guard her and all that is with her.” The merchant agreed to this and
abode with the King, who called his secretary and steward and said to
them, “Go and pass the night in this man’s ship and keep it safe,
Inshallah!” So they went up into the ship and seating themselves, this
on the poop and that on the bow, passed a part of the night in repeating
the names of Allah (to whom belong Majesty and Might!). Then quoth one
to the other, “Ho, such an one! The King bade us keep watch and I fear
lest sleep overtake us; so, come, let us discourse of stories of fortune
and of the good we have seen and the trials of life.” Quoth the other,
“O my brother, as for my trials Fate parted me from my mother and a
brother of mine, whose name was even as thine; and the cause of our
parting was this. My father took ship with us from such a place, and the
winds rose against us and were contrary, so that the ship was wrecked
and Allah broke our fair companionship.” Hearing this the first asked,
“What was the name of thy mother, O my brother?”; and the second
answered, “So and so.” Said the elder, “And of thy father?”; said the
younger, “So and so.” Thereat brother threw himself upon brother saying,
“By Allah, thou art my very brother!” And each fell to telling the other
what had befallen him in his youth, whilst the mother heard all they
said, but held her peace and in patience possessed her soul. Now when it
was morning, one said to the other, “Come, brother, let us go to my
lodging and talk there;” and the other said, “‘Tis well.” So they went
away and presently, the merchant came back and finding the woman in
great trouble, said to her, “What hath befallen thee and why this
concern?” Quoth she, “Thou sentest to me yesternight men who tempted me
to evil, and I have been in sore annoy with them.” At this, he was wroth
and, repairing to the King, reported the conduct of his two trusty
wights. The King summoned the twain forthwith, as he loved them for
their fidelity and piety; and, sending for the woman, that he might hear
from her own lips what she had to say against them, thus bespake her, “O
woman, what hath betided thee from these two men in whom I trust?” She
replied, “O King, I conjure thee by the Almighty, the Bountiful One, the
Lord of the Empyrean, bid them repeat the words they spoke yesternight.”
So he said to them, “Say what ye said and conceal naught thereof.”
Accordingly, they repeated their talk, and lo! the King rising from his
throne, gave a great cry and threw himself upon them, embracing them and
saying, “By Allah, ye are my very sons!” Therewith the woman unveiled
her face and said, “And by Allah, I am their very mother.” So they were
united and abode in all solace of life and its delight till death parted
them; and so glory be to Him who delivereth His servant when he
resorteth to Him, and disappointeth not his hope in Him and his trust!
And how well saith the poet on the subject:—

 Each thing of things hath his appointed tide ✿ When ‘tis, O brother,
    granted or denied.
 Repine not an affliction hit thee hard; ✿ For woe and welfare aye
    conjoint abide:
 How oft shall woman see all griefs surround ✿ Yet feel a joyance thrill
    what lies inside!
 How many a wretch, on whom the eyes of folk ✿ Look down, shall grace
    exalt to pomp and pride!
 This man is one long suffering grief and woe; ✿ Whom change and chance
    of Time hath sorely tried:
 The World divided from what held he dearest, ✿ After long union
    scattered far and wide;
 But deigned his Lord unite them all again, ✿ And in the Lord is every
    good descried.
 Glory to Him whose Providence rules all ✿ Living, as surest proofs for
    us decide.
 Near is the Near One; but no wisdom clearer ✿ Shows him, nor distant
    way-fare brings Him nearer.

And this tale is told of


Footnote 499:

  Koran xiii. 41.

Footnote 500:

  Robinson Crusoe, with a touch of Arab prayerfulness. Also the story of
  the Knight Placidus in the Gesta (cx.), Boccaccio, etc.


I had been many times to Meccah (Allah increase its honour!) and the
folk used to follow me for my knowledge of the road and remembrance of
the water-stations. It happened one year that I was minded to make the
pilgrimage to the Holy House and visitation of the tomb of His Prophet
(on whom be blessing and peace!), and I said in myself, “I well know the
way and will fare alone.” So I set out and journeyed till I came to
Al-Kadisíyah[502] and, entering the mosque there, saw a man suffering
from black leprosy seated in the prayer-niche. Quoth he on seeing me, “O
Abu al-Hasan, I crave thy company to Meccah.” Quoth I to myself, “I fled
from all my companions, and how shall I company with lepers?” So I said
to him, “I will bear no man company”; and he was silent at my words.
Next day I walked on alone, till I came to Al-Akabah,[503] where I
entered the mosque and found the leper seated in the prayer-niche. So I
said to myself, “Glory be to Allah! how hath this fellow preceded me
hither?” But he raised his head to me and said with a smile, “O Abu
al-Hasan, He doth for the weak that which surpriseth the strong!” I
passed that night confounded at what I had seen; and, as soon as morning
dawned, set out again by myself; but when I came to Arafat[504] and
entered the mosque, behold, there was the leper seated in the niche! So
I threw myself upon him and kissing his feet said, “O my lord, I crave
thy company.” But he answered, “This may in no way be.” Then I began
weeping and wailing at the loss of his converse, when he said, “Spare
thy tears which will avail thee naught!”——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighty-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Abu al-Hasan
continued:—Now when I saw the leper-man seated in the prayer-niche, I
threw myself upon him and said, “O my lord, I crave thy company;” and
fell to kissing his feet. But he answered, “This may in no way be!” Then
I began weeping and wailing at the loss of his company when he said,
“Spare thy tears which will avail thee naught!”; and he recited these

 Why dost thou weep when I depart and thou didst parting claim; ✿ And
    cravest union when we ne’er shall reunite the same?
 Thou lookedest on nothing save my weakness and disease; ✿ And saidst
    “Nor goes nor comes, or night or day, this sickly frame.”

 Seest not how Allah (glorified His glory ever be!) ✿ Deigneth to grant
    His slave’s petition wherewithal he came.
 If I, to eyes of men be that and only that they see, ✿ And this my body
    show itself so full of grief and grame,
 And have I naught of food that shall supply me to the place ✿ Where
    crowds unto my Lord resort impelled by single aim,
 I have a high Creating Lord whose mercies aye are hid; ✿ A Lord who hath
    none equal and no fear is known to Him.
 So fare thee safe and leave me lone in strangerhood to wone ✿ For He,
    the only One, consoles my loneliness so lone.

Accordingly, I left him; but every station I came to, I found he had
foregone me, till I reached Al-Medinah, where I lost sight of him and
could hear no tidings of him. Here I met Abu Yazíd al-Bustámi and Abu
Bakr al-Shibli and a number of other Shaykhs and learned men, to whom
with many complaints, I told my case and they said, “Heaven forbid that
thou shouldst gain his company after this! He was Abu Ja’afar the leper,
in whose name folk at all times pray for rain and by whose
blessing-prayers their end attain.” When I heard their words, my desire
for his company redoubled and I implored the Almighty to reunite me with
him. Whilst I was standing on Arafat,[505] one pulled me from behind, so
I turned and behold, it was my man. At this sight I cried out with a
loud cry and fell down in a fainting fit; but, when I came to myself he
had disappeared from my sight. This increased my yearning for him and
the ceremonies were tedious to me and I prayed Almighty Allah to give me
sight of him; nor was it but a few days after, when lo! one pulled me
from behind, and I turned and it was he again. Thereupon he said, “Come,
I conjure thee and ask thy want of me.” So I begged him to pray for me
three prayers; first, that Allah would make me love poverty; secondly,
that I might never lie down at night upon provision assured to me; and
thirdly, that He would vouchsafe me to look upon His bountiful Face. So
he prayed for me as I wished, and departed from me. And indeed Allah
hath granted me what the devotee asked in prayer: to begin with He hath
made me so love poverty that, by the Almighty! there is naught in the
world dearer to me than it, and secondly since such a year, I have never
lain down to sleep upon assured provision; withal hath He never let me
lack aught. As for the third prayer, I trust that He will vouchsafe me
that also, even as He hath granted the two precedent for right Bountiful
and Beneficent is His Godhead, and Allah have mercy on him who

          Garb of Fakir, renouncement, lowliness;
          His robe of tatters and of rags his dress;

          And pallor ornamenting brow as though
          ‘Twere wanness such as waning crescents show.

          Wasted him prayer a-through the long-lived night,
          And flooding tears ne’er cease to dim his sight.

          Memory of Him shall cheer his lonely room:
          Th’ Almighty nearest is in nightly gloom.

          The Refuge helpeth such Fakir in need;
          Help e’en the cattle and the wingèd breed:

          Allah for sake of him of wrath is fain,
          And for the grace of him shall fall the rain;

          And if he pray one day for plague to stay,
          ‘Twill stay, and ‘bate man’s wrong and tyrants slay.

          While folk are sad, afflicted one and each,
          He in his mercy’s rich, the generous leach:

          Bright shines his brow; an thou regard his face
          Thy heart illumined shines by light of grace.

          O thou who shunnest souls of worth innate,
          Departs thee (woe to thee!) of sins the weight.

          Thou thinkest to overtake them, while thou bearest
          Follies, which slay thee whatso way thou farest.

          Didst wot their worth thou hadst all honour showed,
          And tears in streamlets from thine eyes had flowed.

          To catarrh-troubled men flowers lack their smell;
          And brokers ken for how much clothes can sell;

          So haste and with thy Lord reunion sue,
          And haply Fate shall lend thee aidance due,

          Rest from rejection and estrangement-stress,
          And Joy thy wish and will shall choicely bless.

          His court wide open for the suer is dight:—
          One, very God, the Lord, th’ Almighty might.

And they also tell a tale of


Footnote 501:

  Arabs note two kinds of leprosy, “Bahak” or “Baras” the common or
  white, and “Juzám” the black leprosy; the leprosy of the joints, mal
  rouge. Both are attributed to undue diet as eating fish and drinking
  milk; and both are treated with tonics, especially arsenic. Leprosy is
  regarded by Moslems as a Scriptural malady on account of its
  prevalence amongst the Israelites who, as Manetho tells us, were
  expelled from Egypt because they infected and polluted the population.
  In mediæval Christendom an idea prevailed that the Saviour was a
  leper; hence the term “morbus sacer”; the honours paid to the
  sufferers by certain Saints and the Papal address (Clement III. A.D.
  1189) dilectis filiis leprosis. (Farrar’s Life of Christ, i. 149.) For
  the “disgusting and impetuous lust” caused by leprosy, see Sonnini (p.
  560) who visited the lepers at Canea in Candia. He is one of many who
  describes this symptom; but in the Brazil, where the foul malady still
  prevails, I never heard of it.

Footnote 502:

  A city in Irak; famous for the three days’ battle which caused the
  death of Yezdegird, last Sassanian king.

Footnote 503:

  A mountain pass near Meccah famous for the “First Fealty of the Steep”
  (Pilgrimage ii. 126). The mosque was built to commemorate the event.

Footnote 504:

  To my surprise I read in Mr. Redhouse’s “Mesnevi” (Trübner, 1881),
  “Arafat, the mount where the victims are slaughtered by the pilgrims”
  (p. 60). This ignorance is phenomenal. Did Mr. Redhouse never read
  Burckhardt or Burton?

Footnote 505:

  _i.e._ listening to the sermon.

Footnote 506:

  It is sad doggrel.

                    THE QUEEN OF THE SERPENTS.[507]

There was once, in days of yore and in ages and times long gone before,
a Grecian sage called Daniel, who had disciples and scholars; and the
wise men of Greece were obedient to his bidding and relied upon his
learning. Withal had Allah denied him a man-child. One night, as he lay
musing and weeping over the lack of a son who might inherit his lore, he
bethought him that Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) heareth the
prayer of those who resort to Him and that there is no doorkeeper at the
door of His bounties and that He favoureth whom He will without compt
and sendeth no supplicant empty away; nay He filleth their hands with
favours and benefits. So he besought the Almighty, the Bountiful, to
vouchsafe him a son to succeed him, and to endow him abundantly with His
beneficence. Then he returned home and carnally knew his wife who
conceived by him the same night.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Grecian sage
returned home and knew his wife who conceived by him the same night. A
few days after this he took ship for a certain place, but the ship was
wrecked and he saved himself on one of her planks, while only five
leaves remained to him of all the books he had. When he returned home,
he laid the five leaves in a box and locking it, gave the key to his
wife (who then showed big with child), and said to her, “Know that my
decease is at hand and that the time draweth nigh for my translation
from this abode temporal to the home which is eternal. Now thou art with
child and after my death wilt haply bear a son: if this be so, name him
Hásib Karím al-Dín[508] and rear him with the best of rearing. When the
boy shall grow up and shall say to thee:—What inheritance did my father
leave me? give him these five leaves, which when he shall have read and
understood, he will be the most learned man of his time.” Then he
farewelled her and heaving one sigh, departed the world and all that is
therein—the mercy of Allah the Most Highest be upon Him! His family and
friends wept over him and washed him and bore him forth in great state
and buried him; after which they wended their ways home. But few days
passed ere his widow bare a handsome boy and named him Hasib Karim
al-Din, as her husband charged her; and immediately after his birth she
summoned the astrologers, who calculated his ascendants and drawing his
horoscope, said to her, “Know, O woman! that this birth will live many a
year; but that will be after a great peril in the early part of his
life, wherefrom an he escape, he will be given the knowledge of all the
exact sciences.” So saying they went their ways. She suckled him two
years,[509] then weaned him, and when he was five years old, she placed
him in a school to learn his book, but he would read nothing. So she
took him from school and set him to learn a trade; but he would not
master any craft and there came no work from his hands. The mother wept
over this and the folk said to her, “Marry him: haply he will take heart
for his wife and learn him a trade.” So she sought out a girl and
married him to her; but, despite marriage and the lapse of time, he
remained idle as before, and would do nothing. One day, some neighbours
of hers, who were woodcutters, came to her and said, “Buy thy son an ass
and cords and an axe and let him go with us to the mountain and we will
all of us cut wood for fuel. The price of the wood shall be his and
ours, and he shall provide thee and his wife with his share.” When she
heard this, she joyed with exceeding joy and bought her son an ass and
cords and hatchet; then, carrying him to the woodcutters, delivered him
into their hands and solemnly committed him to their care. Said they,
“Have no concern for the boy, our Lord will provide him: he is the son
of our Shaykh.” So they carried him to the mountain, where they cut
firewood and loaded their asses therewith; then returned to the city
and, selling what they had cut, spent the monies on their families. This
they did on the next day and the third and ceased not for some time,
till it chanced one day, a violent storm of rain broke over them, and
they took refuge in a great cave till the downfall should pass away. Now
Hasib Karim al-Din went apart from the rest into a corner of the cavern
and sitting down, fell to smiting the floor with his axe. Presently he
noted that the ground sounded hollow under the hatchet; so he dug there
awhile and came to a round flagstone with a ring in it. When he saw
this, he was glad and called his comrades the woodcutters,——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighty-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasib Karim
al-Din saw the flagstone with the ring, he was glad and called his
comrades the woodcutters, who came to him and, finding it was fact, soon
pulled up the stone and discovered under it a trap-door, which, being
opened, showed a cistern full of bees’ honey.[510] Then said they to one
another, “This is a large store and we have nothing for it but to return
to the city and fetch vessels wherein to carry away the honey, and sell
it and divide the price, whilst one of us stands by the cistern, to
guard it from outsiders.” Quoth Hasib, “I will stay and keep watch over
it till you bring your pots and pans.” So they left him on guard there
and, repairing to the city, fetched vessels, which they filled with
honey and loading their asses therewith, carried them to the streets and
sold the contents. They returned on the morrow and thus they did several
days in succession, sleeping in the town by night and drawing off the
stuff by day, whilst Hasib abode on guard by it till but little
remained, when they said one to other, “It was Hasib Karim al-Din found
the honey, and to-morrow he will come down to the city and complain
against us and claim the price of it, saying, ‘Twas I found it; nor is
there escape for us but that we let him down into the cistern, to bale
out the rest of the honey, and leave him there; so will he die of
hunger, and none shall know of him.” They all fell in with this plot as
they were making for the place; and, when they reached it, one said to
him, “O Hasib, go down into the pit and bale out for us the rest of the
honey.” So he went down and passed up to them what remained of the
honey, after which he said to them, “Draw me up, for there is nothing
left.” They made him no answer; but, loading their asses, went off to
the city and left him alone in the cistern. Thereupon he fell to weeping
and crying, “There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah,
the Glorious, the Great!” Such was his case; but as regards his
comrades, when they reached the city and sold the honey, they repaired
to Hasib’s mother, weeping, and said to her, “May thy head outlive thy
son Hasib!” She asked, “What brought about his death?” and they
answered, “We were cutting wood on the mountain-top, when there fell on
us a heavy downfall of rain and we took shelter from it in a cavern; and
suddenly thy son’s ass broke loose and fled into the valley, and he ran
after it, to turn it back, when there came out upon them a great wolf,
who tore thy son in pieces and ravined the ass.” When the mother heard
this, she beat her face and strewed dust on her head and fell to
mourning for her son; and she kept life and soul together only by the
meat and drink which they brought her every day. As for the woodcutters
they opened them shops and became merchants and spent their lives in
eating and drinking and laughing and frolicking. Meanwhile Hasib Karim
al-Din, who ceased not to weep and call for help, sat down upon the
cistern-edge when behold, a great scorpion fell down on him; so he rose
and killed it. Then he took thought and said, “The cistern was full of
honey; how came this scorpion here?” Accordingly he got up and examined
the well right and left, till he found a crevice from which the scorpion
had fallen and saw the light of day shining through it. So he took out
his woodman’s knife and enlarged the hole, till it was big as a window,
when he crept through it and, after walking for some time, came to a
vast gallery, which led him to a huge door of black iron bearing a
padlock of silver wherein was a key of gold. He stole up to the door
and, looking through the chink, saw a great light shining within; so he
took the key and, opening the door, went on for some time, till he came
to a large artificial lake, wherein he caught sight of something that
shimmered like silver. He walked up to it and at last he saw, hard by a
hillock of green jasper and on the hill-top, a golden throne studded
with all manner gems,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighty-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasib reached
the hillock he found it of green jasper surmounted by a golden throne
studded with all manner gems, round which were set many stools, some of
gold, some of silver and others of leek-green emerald. He clomb the
hillock and, counting the stools, found them twelve thousand in number;
then he mounted the throne which was set on the centre and, seating
himself thereon, fell to wondering at the lake and the stools, and he
marvelled till drowsiness overcame him and he dropt asleep. Presently,
he was aroused by a loud snorting and hissing and rustling, so he opened
his eyes; and, sitting up, saw each stool occupied by a huge serpent, an
hundred cubits in length. At this sight, great fear gat hold of him; his
spittle dried up for the excess of his dread and he despaired of life,
as all their eyes were blazing like live coals. Then he turned towards
the lake and saw that what he had taken for shimmering water was a
multitude of small snakes, none knoweth their compt save Allah the Most
High. After awhile, there came up to him a serpent as big as a mule,
bearing on its back a tray of gold, wherein lay another serpent which
shone like crystal and whose face was as that of a woman[511] and who
spake with human speech. And as soon as she was brought up to Hasib, she
saluted him and he returned the salutation. Thereupon, one of the
serpents seated on the stools came up and, lifting her off the tray, set
her on one of the seats and she cried out to the other serpents in their
language, whereupon they all fell down from their stools and did her
homage. But she signed to them to sit and they did so. Then she
addressed Hasib, saying, “Have no fear of us, O youth; for I am the
Queen of the Serpents and their Sultánah.” When he heard her speak on
this wise, he took heart and she bade the serpents bring him somewhat of
food.[512] So they brought apples and grapes and pomegranates and
pistachio-nuts and filberts and walnuts and almonds and bananas and set
them before him, and the Queen-serpent said, “Welcome, O youth! What is
thy name?” Answered he, “Hasib Karim al-Din;” and she rejoined, “O
Hasib, eat of these fruits, for we have no other meat and fear thou
nothing from us at all.” Hearing this, he ate his fill and praised Allah
Almighty; and presently they took away the trays from before him, and
the Queen said, “Tell me, O Hasib, whence thou art and how camest thou
hither and what hath befallen thee.” So he told her his story from first
to last, the death of his father; his birth; his being sent to school
where he learnt nothing; his becoming a wood-cutter; his finding the
honey-cistern; his being abandoned therein; his killing the scorpion;
his widening the crevice; his finding the iron door and his coming upon
the Queen, and he ended his long tale with saying, “These be my
adventures from beginning to end and only Allah wotteth what will betide
me after all this!” Quoth the Queen, after listening to his words,
“Nothing save good shall betide thee:”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased to say her permitted say.


        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Serpent-queen had heard his story she said, “Nothing save good shall
betide thee: but I would have thee, O Hasib, abide with me some time,
that I may tell thee my history and acquaint thee with the wondrous
adventures which have happened to me.” “I hear and obey thy hest,”
answered he; and she began to tell in these words,

                     _THE ADVENTURES OF BULUKIYA._

Know thou, O Hasib, there was once in the city of Cairo a King of the
Banu Isra’íl, a wise and a pious, who was bent double by poring over
books of learning, and he had a son named Bulúkiyá. When he grew old and
weak and was nigh upon death, his Grandees and Officers of state came up
to salute him, and he said to them, “O folk, know that at hand is the
hour of my march from this world to the next, and I have no charge to
lay on you, save to commend to your care my son Bulukiya.” Then said he,
“I testify that there is no god save _the_ God;” and, heaving one sigh,
departed the world—the mercy of Allah be upon him! They laid him out and
washed him and buried him with a procession of great state. Then they
made his son Bulukiya Sultan in his stead; and he ruled the kingdom
justly and the people had peace in his time. Now it befel one day that
he entered his father’s treasuries, to look about him, and coming upon
an inner compartment and finding the semblance of a door opened it and
passed in. And lo! he found himself in a little closet, wherein stood a
column of white marble, on the top of which was a casket of ebony; he
opened this also and saw therein another casket of gold, containing a
book. He read the book and found in it an account of our lord Mohammed
(whom Allah bless and preserve!) and how he should be sent in the latter
days[513] and be the lord of the first Prophets and the last. On seeing
the personal description Bulukiya’s heart was taken with love of him, so
he at once assembled all the notables of the Children of Israel, the
Cohens or diviners, the scribes and the priests, and acquainted them
with the book, reading portions of it to them and, adding, “O folk,
needs must I bring my father out of his grave and burn him.” The lieges
asked, “Why wilt thou burn him?”; and he answered, “Because he hid this
book from me and imparted it not to me.” Now the old King had excerpted
it from the Torah or Pentateuch and the Books of Abraham; and had set it
in one of his treasuries and concealed it from all living. Rejoined
they, “O King, thy father is dead; his body is in the dust and his
affair is in the hands of his Lord; thou shalt not take him forth of his
tomb.” So he knew that they would not suffer him to do this thing by his
sire and leaving them he repaired to his mother, to whom said he, “O my
mother, I have found, in one of my father’s treasuries, a book
containing a description of Mohammed (whom Allah bless and keep!), a
prophet who shall be sent in the latter days; and my heart is captivated
with love of him. Wherefore am I resolved to wander over the earth, till
I foregather with him; else I shall die of longing for his love.” Then
he doffed his clothes and donned an Abá-gown of goat’s hair and coarse
sandals, saying, “O my mother, forget me not in thy prayers.” She wept
over him and said, “What will become of us after thee?”; but Bulukiya
answered, “I can endure no longer, and I commit my affair and thine to
Allah who is Almighty.” Then he set out on foot Syria-wards without the
knowledge of any of his folk, and coming to the sea-board found a vessel
whereon he shipped as one of the crew. They sailed till he made an
island, where Bulukiya landed with the crew, but straying away from the
rest he sat down under a tree and sleep got the better of him. When he
awoke, he sought the ship but found that she had set sail without him,
and in that island he saw serpents as big as camels and palm-trees,
which repeated the names of Allah (be He extolled and exalted!) and
blessed Mohammed (whom the Lord assain and save!), proclaiming the Unity
and glorifying the Glorious; whereat he wondered——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Bulukiya saw
the serpents glorifying God and proclaiming the Unity, he wondered with
extreme wonder. When they saw him, they flocked to him and one of them
said to him, “Who and whence art thou, and whither goest thou, and what
is thy name?” Quoth he, “My name is Bulukiya; I am of the Children of
Israel and, being distracted for love of Mohammed (whom Allah bless and
keep!), I come in quest of him. But who are ye, O noble creatures?”
Answered they, “We are of the dwellers in the Jahannam-hell; and
Almighty Allah created us for the punishment of Kafirs.” “And how came
ye hither?” asked he, and the Serpents answered, “Know, O Bulukiya, that
Hell[514] of the greatness of her boiling, breatheth twice a year,
expiring in the summer and inspiring in the winter, and hence the
summer-heat and winter-cold. When she exhaleth, she casteth us forth of
her maw, and we are drawn in again with her inhaled breath.” Quoth
Bulukiya, “Say me, are there greater serpents than you in Hell?”; and
they said, “Of a truth we are cast out with the expired breath but by
reason of our smallness; for in Hell every serpent is so great, that
were the biggest of us to pass over its nose it would not feel us.[515]”
Asked Bulukiya, “Ye sing the praises of Allah and invoke blessings on
Mohammed, whom the Almighty assain and save! Whence wot ye of
Mohammed?”; and they answered, “O Bulukiya, verily his name is written
on the gates of Paradise; and, but for him, Allah had not created the
worlds[516] nor Paradise, nor heaven nor hell nor earth, for He made all
things that be, solely on his account, and hath conjoined his name with
His own in every place; wherefore we love Mohammed, whom Allah bless and
preserve!” Now hearing the serpents’ converse did but inflame Bulukiya’s
love for Mohammed and yearning for his sight; so he took leave of them;
and, making his way to the sea-shore, found there a ship made fast to
the beach; he embarked therein as a seaman and sailed nor ceased sailing
till he came to another island. Here he landed and walking about awhile
found serpents great and small, none knoweth their number save Almighty
Allah, and amongst them a white Serpent, clearer than crystal, seated in
a golden tray borne on the back of another serpent as big as an
elephant. Now this, O Hasib, was the Serpent-queen, none other than
myself. Quoth Hasib, “And what answer didst thou make him?” Quoth she,
“Know, O Hasib, that when I saw Bulukiya, I saluted him with the salam,
and he returned my salutation,” and I said to him, “Who and what art
thou and what is thine errand and whence comest thou and whither goest
thou?” Answered he, “I am of the Children of Israel; my name is
Bulukiya, and I am a wanderer for the love of Mohammed, whose
description I have read in the revealed scriptures, and of whom I go in
search. But what art thou and what are these serpents about thee?” Quoth
I, “O Bulukiya, I am the Queen of the Serpents; and when thou shalt
foregather with Mohammed (whom Allah assain and save!) bear him my
salutation.” Then Bulukiya took leave of me and journeyed till he came
to the Holy City which is Jerusalem. Now there was in that stead a man
who was deeply versed in all sciences, more especially in geometry and
astronomy and mathematics, as well as in white magic[517] and
Spiritualism; and he had studied the Pentateuch and the Evangel and the
Psalms and the Books of Abraham. His name was Affán; and he had found in
certain of his books, that whoso should wear the seal-ring of our lord
Solomon, men and Jinn and birds and beasts and all created things would
be bound to obey him. Moreover, he had discovered that our lord Solomon
had been buried in a coffin which was miraculously transported beyond
the Seven Seas to the place of burial;——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighty-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Affan had found in
certain books that none, mortal or spirit, could pluck the seal-ring
from the lord Solomon’s finger; and that no navigator could sail his
ship upon the Seven Seas over which the coffin had been carried.
Moreover, he had found out by reading that there was a herb of herbs and
that if one express its juice and anoint therewith his feet, he should
walk upon the surface of any sea that Allah Almighty had created without
wetting his soles; but none could obtain this herb, without he had with
him the Serpent-queen. When Bulukiya arrived at the Holy City, he at
once sat down to do his devotions and worship the Lord; and, whilst he
was so doing, Affan came up and saluted him as a True Believer. Then
seeing him reading the Pentateuch and adoring the Almighty, he accosted
him saying, “What is thy name, O man; and whence comest thou and whither
goest thou?” He answered, “My name is Bulukiya; I am from the city of
Cairo and am come forth wandering in quest of Mohammed, whom Allah bless
and preserve!” Quoth Affan, “Come with me to my lodging that I may
entertain thee.” “To hear is to obey,” replied Bulukiya. So the devotee
took him by the hand and carried him to his house where he entreated him
with the utmost honour and presently said to him, “Tell me thy history,
O my brother, and how thou camest by the knowledge of Mohammed (whom
Allah assain and save!) that thy heart hath been taken with love of him
and compelled thee to fare forth and seek him; and lastly tell me who it
was directed thee in this road.” So he related to him his tale in its
entirety; whereupon Affan, who well-nigh lost his wits for wonder, said
to him, “Make tryst for me with the Queen of the Serpents and I will
bring thee in company with Mohammed, albeit the date of his mission is
yet far distant. We have only to prevail upon the Queen and carry her in
a cage to a certain mountain where the herbs grow; and, as long as she
is with us, the plants as we pass them will parley with human speech and
discover their virtues by the ordinance of Allah the Most High. For I
have found in my books that there is a certain herb and all who express
its juice and anoint therewith their feet shall walk upon whatsoever sea
Almighty Allah hath made, without wetting sole. When we have found the
magical herb, we will let her go her way; and then will we anoint our
feet with the juice and cross the Seven Seas, till we come to the
burial-place of our lord Solomon. Then we will take the ring off his
finger and rule even as he ruled and win all our wishes; we will enter
the Main of Murks[518] and drink of the Water of Life, and so the
Almighty will let us tarry till the End of Time and we shall foregather
with Mohammed, whom Allah bless and preserve!” Hearing these words
Bulukiya replied, “O Affan, I will make tryst for thee with the
Serpent-queen and at once show thee her abiding place.” So Affan made
him a cage of iron; and, providing himself with two bowls, one full of
wine and the other of milk, took ship with Bulukiya and sailed till they
came to the island, where they landed and walked upon it. Then Affan set
up the cage, in which he laid a noose and withdrew after placing in it
the two bowls; when he and Bulukiya concealed themselves afar off.
Presently, up came the Queen of the Serpents (that is, myself) and
examined the cage. When she (that is I) smelt the savour of the milk,
she came down from the back of the snake which bore her tray and,
entering the cage, drank up the milk. Then she went to the bowl of wine
and drank of it, whereupon her head became giddy and she slept. When
Affan saw this, he ran up and locking the cage upon her, set it on his
head and made for the ship, he and Bulukiya. After awhile she awoke and
finding herself in a cage of iron on a man’s head and seeing Bulukiya
walking beside the bearer, said to him, “This is the reward of those who
do no hurt to the sons of Adam.” Answered he, “O Queen, have no fear of
us, for we will do thee no hurt at all. We wish thee only to show us the
herb which, when pounded and squeezed yieldeth a juice, and this rubbed
upon the feet conferreth the power of walking dryshod upon what sea
soever Almighty Allah hath created; and when we have found that we will
return thee to thy place and let thee wend thy way.” Then Affan and
Bulukiya fared on for the hills where grew the herbs; and, as they went
about with the Queen, each plant they passed began to speak and avouch
its virtues by permission of Allah the Most High. As they were thus
doing and the herbs speaking right and left behold, a plant spoke out
and said, “I am the herb ye seek, and all who gather and crush me and
anoint their feet with my juice, shall fare over what sea soever Allah
Almighty hath created and yet ne’er wet sole.” When Affan heard this, he
set down the cage from his head and, gathering what might suffice them
of the herb, crushed it and filling two vials with the juice kept them
for future use; and with what was left they anointed their feet. Then
they took up the Serpent-queen’s cage and journeyed days and nights,
till they reached the island, where they opened the cage and let out
her, that is me. When I found myself at liberty, I asked them what use
they would make of the juice; and they answered, “We design to anoint
our feet and to cross the Seven Seas to the burial-place of our lord
Solomon[519] and take the seal-ring from his finger.” Quoth I, “Far, far
is it from your power to possess yourselves of the ring!” They enquired,
“Wherefore?” and I replied, “Because Almighty Allah vouchsafed unto our
lord Solomon the gift of this ring and distinguished him thereby, for
that he said to Him:—O Lord, give me a kingdom which may not be obtained
after me; for Thou verily art the Giver of kingdoms.[520] So that ring
is not for you.” And I added, “Had ye twain taken the herb, whereof all
who eat shall not die until the First Blast,[521] it had better availed
you than this ye have gotten; for ye shall nowise come at your desire
thereby.” Now when they heard this, they repented them with exceeding
penitence and went their ways.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Eighty-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Bulukiya and
Affan heard these words, they repented them with exceeding penitence and
went their ways. Such was their case; but as regards myself (continued
the Serpent-queen) I went in quest of my host and found it fallen in
piteous case, the stronger of them having grown weak in my absence and
the weaker having died. When they saw me, they rejoiced and flocking
about me, asked, “What hath befallen thee, and where hast thou been?” So
I told them what had passed, after which I gathered my forces together
and repaired with them to the mountain Kaf, where I wont to winter,
summer-freshing in the place where thou now seest me, O Hasib Karim
al-Din. This, then, is my story and what befel me. Thereupon Hasib
marvelled at her words and said to her, “I beseech thee, of thy favour,
bid one of thy guards bear me forth to the surface of the earth, that I
may go to my people.” She replied, “O Hasib, thou shalt not have leave
to depart from us till winter come, and needs must thou go with us to
the Mountain Kaf and solace thyself with the sight of the hills and
sands and trees and birds magnifying the One God, the Victorious; and
look upon Marids and Ifrits and Jinn, whose number none knoweth save
Almighty Allah.” When Hasib heard this, he was sore chafed and
chagrined: then he said to her, “Tell me of Affan and Bulukiya; when
they departed from thee and went their way, did they cross the Seven
Seas and reach the burial-place of our lord Solomon or not; and if they
did had they power to take the ring or not?” Answered she, “Know, that
when they left me, they anointed their feet with the juice; and, walking
over the water, fared on from sea to sea, diverting themselves with the
wonders of the deep, nor ceased they faring till they had traversed the
Seven Seas and came in sight of a mountain, soaring high in air, whose
stones were emeralds and whose dust was musk; and in it was a stream of
running water. When they made it they rejoiced, saying each to
other:—Verily we have won our wish; and they entered the passes of the
mountain and walked on, till they saw from afar a cavern surmounted by a
great dome, shining with light. So they made for the cavern, and
entering it beheld therein a throne of gold studded with all manner
jewels, and about it stools whose number none knoweth save Allah
Almighty. And they saw lying at full length upon the throne our lord
Solomon, clad in robes of green silk inwoven with gold and broidered
with jewels and precious minerals: his right hand was passed over his
breast and on the middle finger was the seal-ring whose lustre outshone
that of all other gems in the place. Then Affan taught Bulukiya
adjurations and conjurations galore and said to him:—Repeat these
conjurations and cease not repeating until I take the ring. Then he went
up to the throne; but, as he drew near unto it lo! a mighty serpent came
forth from beneath it and cried out at him with so terrible a cry that
the whole place trembled and sparks flew from its mouth, saying, Begone,
or thou art a dead man! But Affan busied himself with his incantations
and suffered himself not to be startled thereby. Then the serpent blew
such a fiery blast at him, that the place was like to be set on fire,
and said to him, Woe to thee! Except thou turn back, I will consume
thee! Hearing these words Bulukiya left the cave, but Affan, who
suffered himself not to be troubled, went up to the Prophet: then he put
out his hand to the ring and touched it and strove to draw it off the
lord Solomon’s finger; and behold, the serpent blew on him once more and
he became a heap of ashes. Such was his case; but as regards Bulukiya he
fell down in a swoon.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninetieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Queen
continued:—When Bulukiya saw Affan burnt up by the fire and become a
heap of ashes, he fell down in a swoon. Thereupon the Lord (magnified be
His Majesty!) bade Gabriel descend earthwards and save him ere the
serpent should blow on him. So Gabriel descended without delay and,
finding Affan reduced to ashes and Bulukiya in a fit, aroused him from
his trance and saluting him, asked, “How camest thou hither?” Bulukiya
related to him his history from first to last, adding, “Know that I came
not hither but for the love of Mohammed (whom Allah assain and save!),
of whom Affan informed me that his mission would take place at the End
of Time; moreover that none should foregather with him but those who
endured to the latter days by drinking of the Water of Life through
means of Solomon’s seal. So I companied him hither and there befel him
what befel; but I escaped the fire and now it is my desire that thou
inform me where Mohammed is to be found.” Quoth Gabriel, “O Bulukiya, go
thy ways, for the time of Mohammed’s coming is yet far distant.” Then he
ascended up to heaven forthright, and Bulukiya wept with sore weeping
and repented of that which he had done, calling to mind my words, whenas
I said to them, “Far is it from man’s power to possess himself of the
ring.” Then he descended from the mountain and returned in exceeding
confusion to the sea-shore and passed the night there, marvelling at the
mountains and seas and islands around him. When morning dawned, he
anointed his feet with the herb-juice and descending to the water, set
out and fared on over the surface of the seas days and nights, astonied
at the terrors of the main and the marvels and wonders of the deep, till
he came to an island as it were the Garden of Eden. So he landed and,
finding himself in a great and pleasant island, paced about it and saw
with admiration that its dust was saffron and its gravel carnelian and
precious minerals; its hedges were of jessamine, its vegetation was of
the goodliest of trees and of the brightest of odoriferous shrubs; its
brushwood was of Comorin and Sumatran aloes-wood and its reeds were
sugar-canes. Round about it were roses and narcissus and amaranths and
gilly-flowers and chamomiles and white lilies and violets, and other
flowers of all kinds and colours. Of a truth the island was the
goodliest place, abounding in space, rich in grace, a compendium of
beauty material and spiritual. The birds warbled on the boughs with
tones far sweeter than chaunt of Koran and their notes would console a
lover whom longings unman. And therein the gazelle frisked free and fain
and wild cattle roamed about the plain. Its trees were of tallest
height; its streams flowed bright; its springs welled with waters sweet
and light; and all therein was a delight to sight and sprite. Bulukiya
marvelled at the charms of the island but knew that he had strayed from
the way he had first taken in company with Affan. He wandered about the
place and solaced him with various spectacles until nightfall, when he
climbed into a tree to sleep; but as he sat there, musing over the
beauty of the site, behold, the sea became troubled and there rose up to
the surface a great beast, which cried out with a cry so terrible that
every living thing upon the isle trembled. As Bulukiya gazed upon him
from the tree and marvelled at the bigness of his bulk, he was presently
followed unexpectedly by a multitude of other sea-beasts in kind
manifold, each holding in his fore-paw a jewel which shone like a lamp,
so that the whole island became as light as day for the lustre of the
gems. After awhile, there appeared, from the heart of the island, wild
beasts of the land, none knoweth their number save Allah the Most High;
amongst which Bulukiya noted lions and panthers and lynxes and other
ferals; and these land-beasts flocked down to the shore; and,
foregathering with the sea-beasts, conversed with them till daybreak,
when they separated and each went his own way. Thereupon Bulukiya,
terrified by what he had seen, came down from the tree and, making the
sea-shore, anointed his feet with the magical juice, and set out once
more upon the surface of the water. He fared on days and nights over the
Second Sea, till he came to a great mountain skirting which ran a Wady
without end, the stones whereof were magnetic iron and its beasts lions
and hares and panthers. He landed on the mountain-foot and wandered from
place to place till nightfall, when he sat down sheltered by one of the
base-hills on the sea-side, to eat of the dried fish thrown up by the
sea. Presently, he turned from his meal and behold, a huge panther was
creeping up to rend and ravin him; so he anointed his feet in haste with
the juice and, descending to the surface of the water, fled walking over
the Third Sea, in the darkness; for the night was black and the wind
blew stark. Nor did he stay his course till he reached another island,
whereon he landed and found there trees bearing fruits both fresh and
dry.[522] So he took of these fruits and ate and praised Allah Almighty;
after which he walked for solace about the island till eventide.——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.


        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninety-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Bulukiya
(continued the Queen) walked for solace about the island till eventide,
when he lay down to sleep. As soon as day brake, he began to explore the
place and ceased not for ten days, after which he again made the shore
and anointed his feet and, setting out over the Fourth Sea, walked upon
it many nights and days, till he came to a third island of fine white
sand without sign of trees or grass. He walked about it awhile but,
finding its only inhabitants sakers which nested in the sand, he again
anointed his feet and trudged over the Fifth Sea, walking night and day
till he came to a little island, whose soil and hills were like crystal.
Therein were the veins wherefrom gold is worked; and therein also were
marvellous trees whose like he had never seen in his wanderings, for
their blossoms were in hue as gold. He landed and walked about for
diversion till it was nightfall, when the flowers began to shine through
the gloom like stars. Seeing this sight, he marvelled and said,
“Assuredly, the flowers of this island are of those which wither under
the sun and fall to the earth, where the winds smite them and they
gather under the rocks and become the Elixir,[523] which the folk
collect and thereof make gold.” He slept there all that night and at
sunrise he again anointed his feet and, descending to the shore, fared
on over the Sixth Sea nights and days, till he came to a fifth island.
Here he landed and found, after walking an hour or so, two mountains
covered with a multitude of trees, whose fruits were as men’s heads
hanging by the hair, and others whose fruits were green birds hanging by
the feet; also a third kind, whose fruits were like aloes, if a drop of
the juice fell on a man it burnt like fire; and others, whose fruits
wept and laughed, besides many other marvels which he saw there. Then he
returned to the sea-shore and, finding there a tall tree, sat down
beneath it till supper-time when he climbed up into the branches to
sleep. As he sat considering the wonderful works of Allah behold, the
waters became troubled, and there rose therefrom the daughters of the
sea, each mermaid holding in her hand a jewel which shone like the
morning. They came ashore and, foregathering under the trees, sat down
and danced and sported and made merry whilst Bulukiya amused himself
with watching and wondering at their gambols, which were prolonged till
the morning, when they returned to the sea and disappeared. Then he came
down and, anointing his feet, set out on the surface of the Seventh Sea,
over which he journeyed two whole months, without getting sight of
highland or island or broadland or lowland or shoreland, till he came to
the end thereof. And so doing he suffered exceeding hunger, so that he
was forced to snatch up fishes from the surface of the sea and devour
them raw, for stress of famine. In such case he pushed on till in early
forenoon he came to the sixth island, with trees a-growing and rills
a-flowing, where he landed and walked about, looking right and left,
till he came to an apple-tree and put forth his hand to pluck of the
fruit, when lo! one cried out to him from the tree, saying, “An thou
draw near to this tree and cut of it aught, I will cut thee in twain.”
So he looked and saw a giant forty cubits high, being the cubit of the
people of that day; whereat he feared with sore fear and refrained from
that tree. Then said he to the giant, “Why dost thou forbid me to eat of
this tree?” Replied the other, “Because thou art a son of Adam and thy
father Adam forgot the covenant of Allah and sinned against Him and ate
of the tree.” Quoth Bulukiya, “What thing art thou and to whom belongeth
this island, with its trees, and how art thou named?” Quoth the tall
one, “My name is Sharáhiyá and trees and island belong to King
Sakhr;[524] I am one of his guards and in charge of his dominion,”
presently adding, “But who art thou and whence comest thou hither?”
Bulukiya told him his story from beginning to end and Sharahiya said,
“Be of good cheer,” and brought him to eat. So he ate his fill and,
taking leave of the giant, set out again and ceased not faring on over
the mountains and sandy deserts for ten days; at the end of which time
he saw, in the distance, a dust-cloud hanging like a canopy in air; and,
making towards it, he heard a mighty clamour, cries and blows and sounds
of mellay. Presently he reached a great Wady, two months’ journey long;
and, looking whence the shouts came, he saw a multitude of horsemen
engaged in fierce fight and the blood running from them till it railed
like a river. Their voices were thunderous and they were armed with
lance and sword and iron mace and bow and arrow, and all fought with the
utmost fury. At this sight he felt sore affright——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninety-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Queen
continued:—When Bulukiya saw the host in fight, he felt sore affright
and was perplexed about his case; but whilst he hesitated, behold, they
caught sight of him and held their hands one from other and left
fighting. Then a troop of them came up to him, wondering at his make,
and one of the horsemen said to him, “What art thou and whence camest
thou hither and whither art wending; and who showed thee the way that
thou hast come to our country?” Quoth he, “I am of the sons of Adam and
am come out, distracted for the love of Mohammed (whom Allah bless and
preserve!); but I have wandered from my way.” Quoth the horseman, “Never
saw we a son of Adam till now, nor did any ever come to this land.” And
all marvelled at him and at his speech. “But what are ye, O creatures?”
asked Bulukiya; and the rider replied, “We are of the Jánn.” So he said,
“O Knight, what is the cause of the fighting amongst you and where is
your abiding-place and what is the name of this valley and this land?”
He replied, “Our abiding-place is the White Country; and, every year,
Allah Almighty commandeth us to come hither and wage war upon the
unbelieving Jann.” Asked Bulukiya, “And where is the White Country?” and
the horseman answered, “It is behind the mountain Kaf, and distant
seventy-five years journey from this place which is termed the Land of
Shaddád son of ‘Ád: we are here for Holy War; and we have no other
business, when we are not doing battle, than to glorify God and hallow
him. Moreover, we have a ruler, King Sakhr hight, and needs must thou go
with us to him, that he may look upon thee for his especial delight.”
Then they fared on (and he with them) till they came to their abiding
place; where he saw a multitude of magnificent tents of green silk, none
knoweth their number save Allah the Most High, and in their midst a
pavilion of red satin, some thousand cubits in compass, with cords of
blue silk and pegs of gold and silver. Bulukiya marvelled at the sight
and accompanied them as they fared on and behold, this was the royal
pavilion. So they carried him into the presence of King Sakhr, whom he
found seated upon a splendid throne of red gold, set with pearls and
studded with gems; the Kings and Princes of the Jann being on his right
hand, and on his left his Councillors and Emirs and Officers of state,
and a multitude of others. The King seeing him bade introduce him, which
they did; and Bulukiya went up to him and saluted him after kissing the
ground before him. The King returned his salute and said, “Draw near me,
O mortal!” and Bulukiya went close up to him. Hereupon the King,
commanding a chair to be set for him by his royal side, bade him sit
down and asked him “Who art thou?”; and Bulukiya answered, “I am a man,
and one of the Children of Israel.” “Tell me thy story,” cried King
Sakhr, “and acquaint me with all that hath befallen thee and how thou
camest to this my land.” So Bulukiya related to him all that had
occurred in his wanderings from beginning to end——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninety-third Night,

She said, it hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Queen
continued:—When Bulukiya related to Sakhr what befel him in his
wanderings, he marvelled thereat. Then he bade the servants bring food
and they spread the tables and set on one thousand and five hundred
platters of red gold and silver and copper, some containing twenty and
some fifty boiled camels, and others some fifty head of sheep; at which
Bulukiya marvelled with exceeding marvel. Then they ate and he ate with
them, till he was satisfied and returned thanks to Allah Almighty; after
which they cleared the tables and set on fruits, and they ate thereof,
glorifying the name of God and invoking blessings on His prophet
Mohammed (whom Allah bless and preserve!) When Bulukiya heard them make
mention of Mohammed, he wondered and said to King Sakhr, “I am minded to
ask thee some questions.” Rejoined the King, “Ask what thou wilt,” and
Bulukiya said, “O King, what are ye and what is your origin and how came
ye to know of Mohammed (whom Allah assain and save!) that ye draw near
to him and love him?” King Sakhr answered, “O Bulukiya, of very sooth
Allah created the fire in seven stages, one above the other, and each
distant a thousand years’ journey from its neighbour. The first stage he
named Jahannam[525] and appointed the same for the punishment of the
transgressors of the True-believers, who die unrepentant; the second he
named Lazá and appointed for Unbelievers: the name of the third is Jahím
and is appointed for Gog and Magog.[526] The fourth is called Sa’ír and
is appointed for the host of Iblis. The fifth is called Sakar and is
prepared for those who neglect prayer. The sixth is called Hatamah and
is appointed for Jews and Christians. The seventh is named Háwiyah and
is prepared for hypocrites. Such be the seven stages.” Quoth Bulukiya,
“Haply Jahannam hath least of torture for that it is the uppermost.”
“Yes,” quoth King Sakhr, “the most endurable of them all is Jahannam;
natheless in it are a thousand mountains of fire, in each mountain
seventy thousand cities of fire, in each city seventy thousand castles
of fire, in each castle seventy thousand houses of fire, in each house
seventy thousand couches of fire and in each couch seventy thousand
manners of torment. As for the other hells, O Bulukiya, none knoweth the
number of kinds of torment that be therein save Allah Most Highest.”
When Bulukiya heard this, he fell down in a fainting-fit, and when he
came to himself, he wept and said, “O King what will be my case?” Quoth
Sakhr, “Fear not, and know thou that whoso loveth Mohammed (whom Allah
bless and keep!) the fire shall not burn him, for he is made free
therefrom for his sake; and whoso belongeth to his Faith the fire shall
fly him. As for us, the Almighty Maker created us of the fire; for the
first that he made in Jahannam were two of His host, whom he called
Khalít and Malít. Now Khalít was fashioned in the likeness of a lion,
with a tail like a tortoise twenty years’ journey in length and ending
in a member masculine; while Malít was like a pied wolf whose tail was
furnished with a member feminine. Then Almighty Allah commanded the
tails to couple and copulate and do the deed of kind, and of them were
born serpents and scorpions, whose dwelling is in the fire, that Allah
may therewith torment those whom He casteth therein; and these increased
and multiplied. Then Allah commanded the tails of Khalit and Malit to
couple and copulate a second time, and the tail of Malit conceived by
the tail of Khalit and bore fourteen children, seven male and seven
female, who grew up and intermarried one with other. All were obedient
to their sire, save one who disobeyed him and was changed into a worm
which is Iblis (the curse of Allah be upon him!). Now Iblis was one of
the Cherubim, for he had served Allah till he was raised to the heavens
and cherished[527] by the especial favour of the Merciful One, who made
him chief of the Cherubim.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninety-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Queen
continued:—Iblis served God and became chief of Cherubim. When, however,
the Lord created Adam (with whom be peace!), He commanded Iblis to
prostrate himself to him, but he drew back; so Allah Almighty expelled
him from heaven and cursed him.[528] This Iblis had issue and of his
lineage are the devils; and as for the other six males, who were his
elders, they are the ancestors of the true-believing Jann, and we are
their descendants. Such, O Bulukiya is our provenance.[529] Bulukiya
marvelled at the King’s words and said, “O King, I pray thee bid one of
thy guards bear me back to my native land.” “Naught of this may we do,”
answered Sakhr, “save by commandment of Allah Almighty; however, an thou
desire to leave us and return home, I will mount thee on one of my mares
and cause her carry thee to the farthest frontiers of my dominions,
where thou wilt meet with the troops of another King, Barákhiyá hight,
who will recognize the mare at sight and take thee off her and send her
back to us; and this is all we can do for thee, and no more.” When
Bulukiya heard these words he wept and said, “Do whatso thou wilt.” So
King Sakhr caused bring the mare and, setting Bulukiya on her back, said
to him, “Beware lest thou alight from her or strike her or cry out in
her face; for if thou do so she will slay thee; but abide quietly riding
on her back till she stop with thee; then dismount and wend thy ways.”
Quoth Bulukiya, “I hear and I obey;” he then mounted and setting out,
rode on a long while between the rows of tents; and stinted not riding
till he came to the royal kitchens where he saw the great cauldrons,
each holding fifty camels, hung up over the fires which blazed fiercely
under them. So he stopped there and gazed with a marvel ever increasing
till King Sakhr thinking him to be anhungered, bade bring him two
roasted camels; and they carried them to him and bound them behind him
on the mare’s crupper. Then he took leave of them and fared on, till he
came to the end of King Sakhr’s dominions, where the mare stood still
and Bulukiya dismounted and began to shake the dust of the journey from
his raiment. And behold, there accosted him a party of men who,
recognising the mare, carried her and Bulukiya before their King
Barakhiya. So he saluted him, and the King returned his greeting and
seated him beside himself in a splendid pavilion, in the midst of his
troops and champions and vassal Princes of the Jann ranged to right and
left; after which he called for food and they ate their fill and
pronounced the Alhamdolillah. Then they set on fruits, and when they had
eaten thereof, King Barakhiya, whose estate was like that of King Sakhr,
asked his guest, “When didst thou leave King Sakhr?” And Bulukiya
answered, “Two days ago.” Quoth Barakhiya, “Dost thou know, how many
days’ journey thou hast come in these two days?” Quoth he, “No,” and the
King rejoined, “Thou hast come a journey of threescore and ten
months.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninety-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Queen
continued:—Barakhiya said to Bulukiya, “In two days thou hast come a
journey of threescore and ten months; moreover when thou mountest the
mare, she was affrighted at thee, knowing thee for a son of Adam, and
would have thrown thee; so they bound on her back these two camels by
way of weight to steady her.” When Bulukiya heard this, he marvelled and
thanked Allah Almighty for safety. Then said the King, “Tell me thy
adventures and what brought thee to this our land.” So he told him his
story from first to last, and the King marvelled at his words, and kept
Bulukiya with him two months. Upon this Hasib Karim al-Din after he had
marvelled at her story, again besought the Serpent-queen saying, “I pray
thee of thy goodness and graciousness command one of thy subjects
conduct me to the surface of the earth, that I may return to my family;”
but she answered, “O Hasib, I know that the first thing thou wilt do,
after seeing the face of the earth will be to greet thy family and then
repair to the Hammam-bath and bathe; and the moment thou endest thine
ablutions will see the last of me, for it will be the cause of my
death.” Quoth Hasib, “I swear that I will never again enter the
Hammam-bath so long as I live, but when washing is incumbent on me, I
will wash at home.” Rejoined the Queen, “I would not trust thee though
thou shouldst swear to me an hundred oaths; for such abstaining is not
possible; and I know thee to be a son of Adam for whom no oath is
sacred. Thy father Adam made a covenant with Allah the most High, who
kneaded the clay whereof He fashioned him forty mornings and made His
angels prostrate themselves to him; yet after all his promise did he
forget and his oath violate, disobeying the commandment of his Lord.”
When Hasib heard this, he held his peace and burst into tears; nor did
he leave weeping for the space of ten days, at the end of which time he
said to the Queen, “Prithee acquaint me with the rest of Bulukiya’s
adventures.” Accordingly, she began again as follows:—Know, O Hasib,
that Bulukiya, after abiding two months with King Barakhiya, farewelled
him and fared on over wastes and deserts nights and days, till he came
to a high mountain which he ascended. On the summit he beheld seated a
great Angel glorifying the names of God and invoking blessings on
Mohammed. Before him lay a tablet covered with characters, these white
and those black,[530] whereon his eyes were fixed, and his two wings
were outspread to the full, one to the western and the other to the
eastern horizon. Bulukiya approached and saluted the Angel, who returned
his salam adding, “Who art thou and whence comest thou and whither
wendest thou and what is thy story?” Accordingly, he repeated to him his
history, from first to last, and the Angel marvelled mightily thereat,
whereupon Bulukiya said to him, “I pray thee in return acquaint me with
the meaning of this table and what is writ thereon; and what may be
thine occupation and thy name.” Replied the Angel, “My name is Michael,
and I am charged with the shifts of night and day; and this is my
occupation till the Day of Doom.” Bulukiya wondered at his words and at
his aspect and the vastness of his stature and, taking leave of him,
fared onwards, night and day, till he came to a vast meadow over which
he walked observing that it was traversed by seven streams and abounded
in trees. He was struck by its beauty and in one corner thereof he saw a
great tree and under it four Angels. So he drew near to them and found
the first in the likeness of a man, the second in the likeness of a wild
beast, the third in the likeness of a bird and the fourth in the
likeness of a bull, engaged in glorifying Almighty Allah, and saying, “O
my God and my Master and my Lord, I conjure Thee, by Thy truth and by
the degree of Thy Prophet Mohammed (on whom be blessings and peace!) to
vouchsafe Thy mercy and grant Thy forgiveness to all things created in
my likeness; for Thou over all things art Almighty!” Bulukiya marvelled
at what he heard but continued his journey till he came to another
mountain and ascending it, found there a great Angel seated on the
summit, glorifying God and hallowing Him and invoking blessings on
Mohammed (whom Allah assain and save!); and he saw that Angel
continually opening and shutting his hands and bending and extending his
fingers. He accosted him and saluted him; whereupon the Angel returned
his salam and enquired who he was and how he came thither. So Bulukiya
acquainted him with his adventures including his having lost the way;
and besought him to tell him, in turn, who he was and what was his
function and what mountain was that. Quoth the Angel, “Know, O Bulukiya,
that this is the mountain Kaf, which encompasseth the world; and all the
countries the Creator hath made are in my grasp. When the Almighty is
minded to visit any land with earthquake or famine or plenty or
slaughter or prosperity, He biddeth me carry out His commands and I
carry them out without stirring from my place; for know thou that my
hands lay hold upon the roots of the earth,”——And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninety-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Queen
continued:—When the angel said, “And know thou that my hands lay hold
upon the roots of the earth,” he asked, “And hath Allah created other
worlds than this within the mountain Kaf?” The Angel answered, “Yes, He
hath made a world white as silver, whose vastness none knoweth save
Himself, and hath peopled it with Angels, whose meat and drink are His
praise and hallowing and continual blessings upon His Prophet Mohammed
(whom Allah bless and keep!). Every Thursday night[531] they repair to
this mountain and worship in congregation Allah until the morning, and
they assign the future recompense of their lauds and litanies to the
sinners of the Faith of Mohammed (whom Allah assain and save!) and to
all who make the Ghusl-ablution of Friday; and this is their function
until the Day of Resurrection.” Asked Bulukiya, “And hath Allah created
other mountains behind the mountain Kaf?”; whereto he answered, “Yes,
behind this mountain is a range of mountains five hundred years’ journey
long, of snow and ice, and this it is that wardeth off the heat of
Jahannam from the world, which verily would else be consumed thereby.
Moreover, behind the mountain Kaf are forty worlds, each one the bigness
of this world forty times told, some of gold and some of silver and
others of carnelian. Each of these worlds hath its own colour, and Allah
hath peopled them with angels, that know not Eve nor Adam nor night nor
day, and have no other business than to celebrate His praises and hallow
Him and make profession of His Unity and proclaim His Omnipotence and
supplicate Him on behalf of the followers of Mohammed (whom Allah bless
and keep!). And know, also, O Bulukiya, that the earths were made in
seven stages, one upon another, and that Allah hath created one of His
Angels, whose stature and attributes none knoweth but Himself and who
beareth the seven stages upon his shoulders. Under this Angel Almighty
Allah hath created a great rock, and under the rock a bull, and under
the bull a huge fish, and under the fish a mighty ocean.”[532] God once
told Isa (with whom be peace!) of this fish, and he said, “O Lord show
me the fish, that I may look upon it.” So the Almighty commanded an
angel to take Isa and show him the fish. Accordingly, he took him up and
carried him (with whom be peace!) to the sea, wherein the fish dwelt,
and said, “Look, O Isa, upon the fish.” He looked but at first saw
nothing, when, suddenly, the fish darted past like lightning. At this
sight Isa fell down a-swoon, and when he came to himself, Allah spake to
him by inspiration, saying, “O Isa, hast thou seen the fish and
comprehended its length and its breadth?” He replied, “By Thy honour and
glory, O Lord, I saw no fish; but there passed me by a great bull, whose
length was three days’ journey, and I know not what manner of thing this
bull is.” Quoth Allah, “O Isa, this that thou sawest and which was three
days in passing by thee, was but the head of the fish;[533] and know
that every day I create forty fishes like unto this.” And Isa hearing
this marvelled at the power of Allah the Almighty. Asked Bulukiya, “What
hath Allah made beneath this sea which containeth the fish?”; and the
Angel answered, “Under the sea the Lord created a vast abyss of air,
under the air fire, and under the fire a mighty serpent, by name Falak;
and were it not for fear of the Most Highest, this serpent would
assuredly swallow up all that is above it, air and fire and the Angel
and his burden, without sensing it.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninety-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the angel said to
Bulukiya when describing the serpent, “And were it not for fear of the
Most Highest, this serpent would assuredly swallow up all that is above
it, air, and fire, and the Angel and his burden, without sensing it.
When Allah created this serpent He said to it by inspiration:—I will
give thee somewhat to keep for me, so open thy mouth. The serpent
replied:—Do whatso Thou wilt; and opened his mouth and God placed Hell
into his maw, saying:—Keep it until the Day of Resurrection. When that
time comes, the Almighty will send His angels with chains to bring Hell
and bind it until the Day when all men shall meet; and the Lord will
order Hell to go open its gates and there will issue therefrom sparks
bigger than the mountains.” When Bulukiya heard these things he wept
with sore weeping and, taking leave of the Angel, fared on westwards,
till he came in sight of two creatures sitting before a great shut gate.
As he drew near, he saw that one of the gatekeepers had the semblance of
a lion and the other that of a bull; so he saluted them and they
returned his salam and enquired who and whence he was and whither he was
bound. Quoth he, “I am of the sons of Adam, a wanderer for the love of
Mohammed (whom Allah assain and save!) and I have strayed from my way.”
Then he asked them what they were and what was the gate before which
they sat, and they answered, “We are the guardians of this gate thou
seest and we have no other business than the praise and hallowing of
Allah and the invocation of blessings on Mohammed (whom may He bless and
keep!).” Bulukiya wondered and asked them, “What is within the gate?”;
and they answered, “We wot not.” Then quoth he, “I conjure you, by the
truth of your glorious Lord, open to me the gate, that I may see that
which is therein.” Quoth they, “We cannot, and none may open this gate,
of all created beings save Gabriel, the Faithful One, with whom be
peace!” Then Bulukiya lifted up his voice in supplication to Allah,
saying, “O Lord, send me thy messenger Gabriel, the Faithful One, to
open for me this gate that I may see what be therein;” and the Almighty
gave ear unto his prayer and commanded the Archangel to descend to earth
and open to him the gate of the Meeting-place of the Two Seas. So
Gabriel descended and, saluting Bulukiya, opened the gate to him,
saying, “Enter this door, for Allah commandeth me to open to thee.” So
he entered and Gabriel locked the gate behind him and flew back to
heaven. When Bulukiya found himself within the gate, he looked and
beheld a vast ocean, half salt and half fresh, bounded on every side by
mountain-ranges of red ruby whereon he saw angels singing the praises of
the Lord and hallowing Him. So he went up to them and saluted them and
having received a return of his salam, questioned them of the sea and
the mountains. Replied they, “This place is situate under the Arsh or
empyreal heaven; and this Ocean causeth the flux and flow of all the
seas of the world; and we are appointed to distribute them and drive
them to the various parts of the earth, the salt to the salt and the
fresh to the fresh,[534] and this is our employ until the Day of Doom.
As for the mountain-ranges they serve to limit and to contain the
waters. But thou, whence comest thou and whither art thou bound?” So he
told them his story and asked them of the road. They bade him traverse
the surface of the ocean which lay before him: so he anointed his feet
with the juice of the herb he had with him, and taking leave of the
angels, set out upon the face of the sea and sped on over the water
nights and days; and as he was faring, behold, he met a handsome youth
journeying along like himself, whereupon he greeted him and he returned
his greeting. After they parted he espied four great Angels wayfaring
over the face of the sea, and their going was like the blinding
lightning; so he stationed himself in their road, and when they came up
to him, he saluted them and said to them, “I ask you by the Almighty,
the Glorious, to tell me your names and whither are ye bound?” Replied
the first Angel, “My name is Gabriel and these my companions are called
Isráfíl and Míká’íl and Azrá’íl. There hath appeared in the East a
mighty dragon, which hath laid waste a thousand cities and devoured
their inhabitants; wherefore Allah Almighty hath commanded us to go to
him and seize him and cast him into Jahannam.” Bulukiya marvelled at the
vastness of their stature and fared on, as before, days and nights, till
he came to an island where he landed and walked about for a while,——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninety-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Bulukiya landed on
the island and walked about for a while, till he saw a comely young man
with light shining from his visage, sitting weeping and lamenting
between two built tombs. So he saluted him and he returned his
salutation, and Bulukiya said to him, “Who art thou and what are these
two built tombs between which thou sittest, and wherefore this wailing?”
He looked at him and wept with sore weeping, till he drenched his
clothes with his tears; then said, “Know thou, O my brother, mine is a
marvellous story and a wondrous; but I would have thee sit by me and
first tell me thy name and thine adventures and who thou art and what
brought thee hither; after which I will, in turn, relate to thee my
history.” So Bulukiya sat down by him and related to him all that had
befallen him from his father’s death,[535] adding, “Such is my history,
the whole of it, and Allah alone knoweth what will happen to me after
this.” When the youth heard his story, he sighed and said, “O thou
unhappy! How few things thou hast seen in thy life compared with mine!
Know, O Bulukiya, that unlike thyself I have looked upon our lord
Solomon, in his life, and have seen things past count or reckoning.
Indeed, my story is strange and my case out of range, and I would have
thee abide with me, till I tell thee my history and acquaint thee how I
come to be sitting here.” Hearing this much Hasib again interrupted the
Queen of the Serpents and said to her, “Allah upon thee, O Queen,
release me and command one of thy servants carry me forth to the surface
of the earth, and I will swear an oath to thee that I will never enter
the Hammam-bath as long as I live.” But she said, “This is a thing which
may not be nor will I believe thee upon thine oath.” When he heard this,
he wept and all the serpents wept on his account and took to interceding
for him with their Queen, saying, “We beseech thee, bid one of us carry
him forth to the surface of the earth, and he will swear thee an oath
never to enter the bath his life long.” Now when Yamlaykhá (for such was
the Queen’s name) heard their appeal, she turned to Hasib and made him
swear to her an oath; after which she bade a serpent carry him forth to
the surface of the earth. The serpent made ready, but as she was about
to go away with him, he turned to Queen Yamlaykha and said, “I would
fain have thee tell me the history of the youth whom Bulukiya saw
sitting between two tombs.” So she said:—Know, O Hasib, that when
Bulukiya sat down by the youth and told him his tale, from first to
last, in order that the other might also recount his adventures and
explain the cause of his sitting between the two tombs——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Four Hundred and Ninety-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Queen
continued:—When Bulukiya ended his recount, the youth said, “How few
things of marvel hast thou seen in thy life, O unhappy! Now I have
looked upon our lord Solomon while he was yet living and I have
witnessed wonders beyond compt and conception.” And he began to relate

                      _THE STORY OF JANSHAH._[536]

Know, O my brother, that my sire was a King called Teghmús, who reigned
over the land of Kabul and the Banu Shahlán, ten thousand warlike
chiefs, each ruling over a hundred walled cities and a hundred citadels;
and he was suzerain also over seven vassal princes, and tribute was
brought to him from the broad lands between East and West. He was just
and equitable in his rule and Allah Almighty had given him all this and
had bestowed on him such mighty empire, yet had He not vouchsafed him a
son (though this was his dearest wish) to inherit the kingdom after his
decease. So one day it befel that he summoned the Olema and astrologers,
the mathematicians and almanac-makers, and said, “Draw me my horoscope
and look if Allah will grant me a son to succeed me.” Accordingly, they
consulted their books and calculated his dominant star and the aspects
thereof; after which they said to him, “Know, O King, that thou shalt be
blessed with a son, but by none other than the daughter of the King of
Khorásán.” Hearing this Teghmus joyed with exceeding joy and, bestowing
on the astrologers and wizards treasure beyond numbering or reckoning,
dismissed them. His chief Wazir was a renowned warrior, by name ‘Ayn
Zár, who was equal to a thousand cavaliers in battle; so him he summoned
and, repeating to him what the astrologers had predicted, he said, “O
Wazir, it is my will that thou equip thee for a march to Khorasan and
demand for me the hand of its King Bahrwán’s daughter.” Receiving these
orders the Wazir at once proceeded to get ready for the journey and
encamped without the town with his troops and braves and retinue, whilst
King Teghmus made ready as presents for the King of Khorasan fifteen
hundred loads of silks and precious stones, pearls and rubies and other
gems, besides gold and silver; and he also prepared a prodigious
quantity of all that goeth to the equipment of a bride; then, loading
them upon camels and mules, delivered them to Ayn Zar, with a letter to
the following purport. “After invoking the blessing of Heaven, King
Teghmus to King Bahrwan, greeting. Know that we have taken counsel with
the astrologers and sages and mathematicians, and they tell us that we
shall have boon of a boy-child, and that by none other than thy
daughter. Wherefore I have despatched unto thee my Wazir Ayn Zar, with
great store of bridal gear, and I have appointed him to stand in my
stead and to enter into the marriage-contract in my name. Furthermore I
desire that of thy favour thou wilt grant him his request without stay
or delay; for it is my own, and all graciousness thou showest him, I
take for myself; but beware of crossing me in this, for know, O King
Bahrwan, that Allah hath bestowed upon me the Kingdom of Kabul, and hath
given me dominion over the Banu Shahlan and vouchsafed me a mighty
empire; and if I marry thy daughter, we will be, I and thou, as one
thing in kingship; and I will send thee every year as much treasure as
will suffice thee. And this is my desire of thee.” Then King Teghmus
sealed the letter with his own ring and gave it to the Wazir, who
departed with a great company and journeyed till he drew near the
capital of Khorasan. When King Bahrwan heard of his approach, he
despatched his principal Emirs to meet him,[537] with a convoy of food
and drink and other requisites, including forage for the steeds. So they
fared forth with the train till they met the Wazir; then, alighting
without the city, they exchanged salutations and abode there, eating and
drinking, ten days; at the end of which time they mounted and rode on
into the town, where they were met by King Bahrwan, who came out to
greet the Wazir of King Teghmus and alighting, embraced him and carried
him to his citadel. Then Ayn Zar brought out the presents and laid them
before King Bahrwan, together with the letter of King Teghmus, which
when the King read and understood, he joyed with joy exceeding and
welcomed the Wazir, saying, “Rejoice in winning thy wish; and know that
if King Teghmus sought of me my life, verily I would give it to him.”
Then he went in forthright to his daughter and her mother and his
kinsfolk, and acquainting them with the King of Kabul’s demand, sought
counsel of them, and they said, “Do what seemeth good to thee.”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

               Now when it was the Five Hundredth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that King Bahrwan
consulted his daughter and her mother and his kinsfolk and they said,
“Do what seemeth good to thee.” So he returned straightway to the
Minister Ayn Zar and notified to him that his desire had been fulfilled;
and the Wazir abode with him two months, at the end of which time he
said to him, “We beseech thee to bestow upon us that wherefore we came,
so we may depart to our own land.” “I hear and obey,” answered the King.
Then he prepared all the gear wanted for the wedding; and when this was
done he assembled his Wazirs and all his Emirs and the Grandees of his
realm and the monks and priests who tied the knot of marriage between
his daughter and King Teghmus by proxy. And King Bahrwan bade decorate
the city after the goodliest fashion and spread the streets with
carpets. Then he equipped his daughter for the journey and gave her all
manner of presents and rarities and precious metals, such as none may
describe; and Ayn Zar departed with the Princess to his own country.
When the news of their approach reached King Teghmus, he bade celebrate
the wedding festivities and adorn the city; after which he went in unto
the Princess and abated her maidenhead; nor was it long before she
conceived by him and, accomplishing her months, bare a man-child like
the moon on the night of its full. When King Teghmus knew that his wife
had given birth to a goodly son, he rejoiced with exceeding joy and,
summoning the sages and astrologers and mathematicians, said to them, “I
would that ye draw the horoscope of the new-born child with his
ascendant and its aspects and acquaint me what shall befal him in his
lifetime.” So they made their calculations and found them favourable;
but, that he would, in his fifteenth year, be exposed to perils and
hardships, and that if he survived, he would be happy and fortunate and
become a greater king than his father and a more powerful. The King
rejoiced greatly in this prediction and named the boy Janshah. Then he
delivered him to the nurses, wet and dry, who reared him excellently
well till he reached his fifth year, when his father taught him to read
the Evangel and instructed him in the art of arms and lunge of lance and
sway of sword, so that in less than seven years he was wont to ride
a-hunting, and a-chasing; he became a doughty champion, perfect in all
the science of the cavalarice and his father was delighted to hear of
his knightly prowess. It chanced one day that King Teghmus and his son
accompanied by the troops rode out for sport into the wolds and wilds
and hunted till mid-afternoon of the third day, when the Prince started
a gazelle of a rare colour, which fled before him. So he gave chase to
it, followed by seven of King Teghmus’s white slaves all mounted on
swift steeds, and rode at speed after the gazelle, which fled before
them till she brought them to the sea-shore. They all ran at her to take
her as their quarry, but she escaped from them and, throwing herself
into the waves,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Five Hundred and First Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Janshah and
the Mamelukes ran at the gazelle, to take her as their quarry, she
escaped from them and, throwing herself into the waves, swam out to a
fishing bark, that was moored near the shore, and sprang on board.
Janshah and his followers dismounted and, boarding the boat, made prize
of the gazelle and were minded to return to shore with her, when the
Prince espied a great island in the offing and said to his merry men, “I
have a longing to visit yonder island.” They answered, “We hear and
obey,” and sailed on till they came to the island, where they landed and
amused themselves with exploring the place. Then they again embarked and
taking with them the gazelle, set out to return homeward, but the murk
of evening overtook them and they missed their way on the main. Moreover
a strong wind arose and drave the boat into mid-ocean, so that when they
awoke in the morning, they found themselves lost at sea. Such was their
case; but as regards King Teghmus, when he missed his son, he commanded
his troops to make search for him in separate bodies; so they dispersed
on all sides and a company of them, coming to the sea-shore, found there
the Prince’s white slave whom he had left in charge of the horses. They
asked him what was come of his master and the other six, and he told
them what had passed; whereupon they took him with them and returned to
the King and acquainted him with what they had learnt. When Teghmus
heard their report, he wept with sore weeping and cast the crown from
his head, biting his hands for vexation. Then he rose forthright and
wrote letters and despatched them to all the islands of the sea.
Moreover he got together an hundred ships and filling them with troops,
sent them to sail about in quest of Janshah, while he himself withdrew
with his troops to his capital, where he abode in sore concern. As for
Janshah’s mother, when she heard of his loss she buffeted her face and
began the mourning ceremonies for her son making sure that he was dead.
Meanwhile, Janshah and his men ceased not driving before the wind and
those in search of them cruised about for ten days till, finding no
trace they returned and reported failure to the King. But a stiff gale
caught the Prince’s craft which went spooning till they made a second
island, where they landed and walked about. Presently they came upon a
spring of running water in the midst of the island and saw from afar a
man sitting hard by it. So they went up to him and saluted him, and he
returned their salam, speaking in a voice like the whistle[538] of
birds. Whilst Janshah stood marvelling at the man’s speech he looked
right and left and suddenly split himself in twain, and each half went a
different way.[539] Then there came down from the hills a multitude of
men of all kinds, beyond count and reckoning; and they no sooner reached
the spring, than each one divided into two halves and rushed on Janshah
and his Mamelukes to eat them. When the voyagers saw this, they turned
and fled seawards; but the cannibals pursued them and caught and ate
three of the slaves, leaving only three slaves who with Janshah reached
the boat in safety; then launching her made for the water and sailed
nights and days without knowing whither their ship went. They killed the
gazelle and lived on her flesh, till the winds drove them to a third
island which was full of trees and waters and flower-gardens and
orchards laden with all fashion of fruits: and streams strayed under the
tree-shade: brief, the place was a Garden of Eden. The island pleased
the Prince and he said to his companions, “Which of you will land and
explore.” Then said one of the slaves, “That will I do”; but he replied,
“This thing may not be; you must all land and explore the place while I
abide in the boat.” So he set them ashore,——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Five Hundred and Second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Prince set
them ashore, and they searched the island, East and West, but found no
one; then they fared on inland to the heart thereof, till they came to a
Castle compassed about with ramparts of white marble, within which was a
palace of the clearest crystal and, set in its centre a garden
containing all manner fruits beyond description, both fresh and dry, and
flowers of grateful odour and trees and birds singing upon the boughs.
Amiddlemost the garden was a vast basin of water, and beside it a great
open hall with a raised dais whereon stood a number of stools
surrounding a throne of red gold, studded with all kinds of jewels and
especially rubies. Seeing the beauty of the Castle and of the Garden
they entered and explored in all directions, but found no one there, so
after rummaging the Castle they returned to Janshah and told him what
they had seen. When he heard their report, he cried, “Needs must I
solace myself with a sight of it;” so he landed and accompanied them to
the palace, which he entered marvelling at the goodliness of the place.
They then visited every part of the gardens and ate of the fruits and
continued walking till it waxed dark, when they returned to the estrade
and sat down, Janshah on the throne in the centre and the three others
on the stools ranged to the right and left. Then the Prince, there
seated, called to mind his separation from his father’s throne-city[540]
and country and friends and kinsfolk; and fell a-weeping and lamenting
over their loss, whilst his men wept around him. And as they were thus
sorrowing behold, they heard a mighty clamour, that came from seaward,
and looking in the direction of the clamour saw a multitude of apes, as
they were swarming locusts. Now the castle and the island belonged to
these apes, who, finding the strangers’ boat moored to the strand, had
scuttled it and after repaired to the palace, where they came upon
Janshah and his men seated. Here the Serpent-queen again broke off her
recital saying, “All this, O Hasib, was told to Bulukiya by the young
man sitting between the two tombs.” Quoth Hasib, “And what did Janshah
with the apes?”; so the Queen resumed her tale:—He and his men were sore
affrighted at the appearance of the apes, but a company of them came up
to the throne whereon he sat and, kissing the earth before him, stood
awhile in his presence with their paws upon their breasts in posture of
respect. Then another troop brought to the castle gazelles which they
slaughtered and skinned; and roasting pieces of the flesh till fit for
food they laid them on platters of gold and silver and spreading the
table, made signs to Janshah and his men to eat. The Prince and his
followers came down from their seats and ate, and the apes ate with
them, till they were satisfied, when the apes took away the meat and set
on fruits of which they partook and praised Allah the most Highest. Then
Janshah asked the apes by signs what they were and to whom the palace
belonged, and they answered him by signals, “Know ye that this island
belonged of yore to our lord Solomon son of David (on both of whom be
peace!), and he used to come hither once every year for his
solace,”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

           Now when it was the Five Hundred and Third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Janshah asked
the apes by signs to whom the palace belonged, they answered him by
signals, “Of a truth this place belonged of yore to our lord Solomon son
of David (on both of whom be peace!), who used to come hither once every
year for his solace, and then wend his ways.” Presently the apes
continued, “And know, O King, that thou art become our Sultan and we are
thy servants; so eat and drink, and whatso thou ever bid us, that will
we do.” So saying, they severally kissed the earth between the hands of
Janshah and all took their departure. The Prince slept that night on the
throne and his men on the stools about him, and on the morrow, at
daybreak, the four Wazirs or Captains of the apes presented themselves
before him, attended by their troops, who ranged themselves about him,
rank after rank, until the place was crowded. Then the Wazirs approached
and exhorted him by signs to do justice amongst them and rule them
righteously; after which the apes cried out to one another and went
away, all save a small party which remained in presence to serve him.
After awhile, there came up a company of apes with huge dogs in the
semblance of horses, each wearing about his head a massive chain; and
signed to Janshah and his three followers to mount and go with them. So
they mounted, marvelling at the greatness of the dogs, and rode forth,
attended by the four Wazirs and a host of apes like swarming locusts,
some riding on dogs and others afoot till they came to the sea-shore.
Janshah looked for the boat which brought him and finding it scuttled
turned to the Wazirs and asked how this had happened to it; whereto they
answered, “Know, O King, that, when thou camest to our island, we kenned
that thou wouldst be Sultan over us and we feared lest ye all flee from
us, in our absence; and embark in the boat; so we sank it.” When Janshah
heard this, he turned to his Mamelukes and said to them, “We have no
means of escaping from these apes, and we must patiently await the
ordinance of the Almighty.” Then they fared on inland and ceased not
faring till they came to the banks of a river, on whose other side rose
a high mountain, whereon Janshah saw a multitude of Ghuls. So he turned
to the apes and asked them, “What are these Ghuls?” and they answered,
“Know, O King, that these Ghuls are our mortal foes and we come hither
to do battle with them.” Janshah marvelled to see them riding horses,
and was startled at the vastness of their bulk and the strangeness of
their semblance; for some of them had heads like bulls and others like
camels. As soon as the Ghuls espied the army of the apes, they charged
down to the river·bank and standing there, fell to pelting them with
stones as big as maces; and between them there befel a sore fight.
Presently, Janshah, seeing that the Ghuls were getting the better of the
apes, cried out to his men, saying, “Uncase your bows and arrows and
shoot at them your best shafts and keep them off from us.” They did so
and slew of the Ghuls much people, when there fell upon them sore dismay
and they turned to flee; but the apes, seeing Janshah’s prowess, forded
the river and headed by their Sultan chased the Ghuls, killing many of
them in the pursuit, till they reached the high mountain where they
disappeared. And while exploring the said mountain Janshah found a
tablet of alabaster, whereon was written, “O thou who enterest this
land, know that thou wilt become Sultan over these apes and that from
them there is no escape for thee, except by the passes that run east and
west through the mountains. If thou take the eastern pass, thou wilt
fare through a country swarming with Ghuls and wild beasts, Marids and
Ifrits, and thou wilt come, after three months’ journeying, to the ocean
which encompasseth the earth; but, if thou travel by the western pass,
it will bring thee, after four months’ journeying, to the head of the
Wady of Emmets.[541] When thou hast followed the road, that leads
through this mountain, ten days,”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Five Hundred and Fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Janshah read this
much upon the tablet and found, at the end of the inscription, “Then
thou wilt come to a great river, whose current is so swift that it
blindeth the eyes. Now this river drieth up every Sabbath,[542] and on
the opposite bank lies a city wholly inhabited by Jews, who the faith of
Mohammed refuse; there is not a Moslem among the band nor is there other
than this city in the land. Better therefore lord it over the apes, for
so long as thou shalt tarry amongst them they will be victorious over
the Ghuls. And know also that he who wrote this tablet was the lord
Solomon, son of David (on both be peace!).” When Janshah read these
words, he wept sore and repeated them to his men. Then they mounted
again and, surrounded by the army of the apes who were rejoicing in
their victory, returned to the castle. Here Janshah abode, Sultaning
over them, for a year and a half. And at the end of this time, he one
day commanded the ape-army to mount and go forth a-hunting with him, and
they rode out into the wolds and wilds, and fared on from place to
place, till they approached the Wady of Emmets, which Janshah knew by
the description of it upon the alabaster tablet. Here he bade them
dismount and they all abode there, eating and drinking a space of ten
days, after which Janshah took his men apart one night and said, “I
purpose we flee through the Valley of Emmets and make for the town of
the Jews; it may be Allah will deliver us from these apes and we will go
God’s ways.” They replied, “We hear and we obey:” so he waited till some
little of the night was spent, then, donning his armour and girding his
sword and dagger and such like weapons, and his men doing likewise, they
set out and fared on westwards till morning. When the apes awoke and
missed Janshah and his men, they knew that they had fled. So they
mounted and pursued them, some taking the eastern pass and others that
which led to the Wady of Emmets, nor was it long before the apes came in
sight of the fugitives, as they were about to enter the valley, and
hastened after them. When Janshah and his men saw them, they fled into
the Emmet-valley; but the apes soon overtook them and would have slain
them, when behold, there rose out of the earth a multitude of ants like
swarming locusts, as big as dogs, and charged home upon the apes. They
devoured many of their foes, and these also slew many of the ants; but
help came to the emmets: now an ant would go up to an ape and smite him
and cut him in twain, whilst ten apes could hardly master one ant and
bear him away and tear him in sunder. The sore battle lasted till the
evening but the emmets were victorious. In the gloaming Janshah and his
men took to flight and fled along the sole of the Wady——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Five Hundred and Fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that in the gloaming
Janshah and his men took to flight and fled along the sole of the Wady
till the morning. With the break of day, the apes were up and at them,
which when the Prince saw, he shouted to his men, “Smite with your
swords.” So they bared their blades and laid on load right and left,
till there ran at them an ape, with tusks like an elephant, and smote
one of the Mamelukes and cut him in sunder. Then the apes redoubled upon
Janshah and he fled with his followers into the lower levels of the
valley, where he saw a vast river and by its side a mighty many of ants.
When the emmets espied Janshah they pushed on and surrounded him, and
one of the slaves fell to smiting them with his sword and cutting them
in twain; whereupon the whole host set upon him and slew him. At this
pass, behold, up came the apes from over the mountain and fell in
numbers upon Janshah; but he tore off his clothes and, plunging into the
river, with his remaining servant, struck out for the middle of the
stream. Presently, he caught sight of a tree on the other bank; so he
swam up to it and laying hold of one of its branches, hung to it and
swung himself ashore, but as for the last Mameluke the current carried
him away and dashed him to pieces against the mountain. Thereupon
Janshah fell to wringing his clothes and spreading them in the sun to
dry, what while there befel a fierce fight between the apes and the
ants, until the apes gave up the pursuit and returned to their own land.
Meanwhile, Janshah, who abode alone on the river-bank, could do naught
but shed tears till nightfall, when he took refuge in a cavern and there
passed the dark hours, in great fear and feeling desolate for the loss
of his slaves. At daybreak awaking from his sleep he set out again and
fared on nights and days, eating of the herbs of the earth, till he came
to the mountain which burnt like fire, and thence he made the river
which dried up every Sabbath. Now it was a mighty stream and on the
opposite bank stood a great city, which was the capital of the Jews
mentioned in the tablet. Here he abode till the next Sabbath, when the
river dried up and he walked over to the other side and entered the Jew
city, but saw none in the streets. So he wandered about till he came to
the door of a homestead, which he opened and entering, espied within the
people of the house sitting in silence and speaking not a syllable.
Quoth he, “I am a stranger and anhungered;” and they signed to him, as
to say, “Eat and drink, but speak not.”[543] So he ate and drank and
slept that night and, when morning dawned, the master of the house
greeted him and bade him welcome and asked him, “Whence comest thou and
whither art thou bound?” At these words Janshah wept sore and told him
all that had befallen him and how his father was King of Kabul; whereat
the Jew marvelled and said, “Never heard we of that city, but we have
heard from the merchants of the caravans that in that direction lieth a
land called Al-Yaman.” “How far is that land from this place?” asked
Janshah, and the Jew answered, “The Cafilah merchants pretend that it is
a two years and three months’ march from their land hither.” Quoth
Janshah, “And when doth the caravan come?” Quoth the Jew, “Next year
‘twill come.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Five Hundred and Sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Jew was
questioned anent the coming of the caravan, he replied, “Next year
‘twill come.” At these words the Prince wept sore and fell a-sorrowing
for himself and his Mamelukes; and lamenting his separation from his
mother and father and all which had befallen him in his wanderings. Then
said the Jew, “O young man, do not weep, but sojourn with us till the
caravan shall come, when we will send thee with it to thine own
country.” So he tarried with the Jew two whole months and every day he
went out walking in the streets for his solace and diversion. Now it
chanced one day, whilst he paced about the main thoroughfares, as of
wont, and was bending his steps right and left, he heard a crier crying
aloud and saying, “Who will earn a thousand gold pieces and a slave-girl
of surpassing beauty and loveliness by working for me between morning
and noontide?” But no one answered him and Janshah said in his mind,
“Were not this work dangerous and difficult, he would not offer a
thousand dinars and a fair girl for half a day’s labour.” Then he
accosted the crier and said, “I will do the work;” so the man carried
him to a lofty mansion where they found one who was a Jew and a
merchant, seated on an ebony chair, to whom quoth the crier, standing
respectfully before him, “O merchant, I have cried every day these three
months, and none hath answered, save this young man.” Hearing his speech
the Jew welcomed Janshah, led him into a magnificent sitting-room and
signalled to bring food. So the servants spread the table and set
thereon all manner meats, of which the merchant and Janshah ate, and
washed their hands. Then wine was served up and they drank; after which
the Jew rose and bringing Janshah a purse of a thousand dinars and a
slave-girl of rare beauty, said to him, “Take maid and money to thy
hire.” Janshah took them and seated the girl by his side when the trader
resumed, “To-morrow to the work!”; and so saying he withdrew and Janshah
slept with the damsel that night. As soon as it was morning, the
merchant bade his slaves clothe him in a costly suit of silk whenas he
came out of the Hammam-bath. So they did as he bade them and brought him
back to the house, whereupon the merchant called for harp and lute and
wine and they drank and played and made merry till the half of the night
was past, when the Jew retired to his Harim and Janshah lay with his
slave-girl till the dawn. Then he went to the bath and on his return,
the merchant came to him and said, “Now I wish thee to do the work for
me.” “I hear and obey,” replied Janshah. So the merchant bade his slaves
bring two she-mules and set Janshah on one, mounting the other himself.
Then they rode forth from the city and fared on from morn till noon,
when they made a lofty mountain, to whose height was no limit. Here the
Jew dismounted, ordering Janshah to do the same; and when he obeyed the
merchant gave him a knife and a cord, saying, “I desire that thou
slaughter this mule.” So Janshah tucked up his sleeves and skirts and
going up to the mule, bound her legs with the cord, then threw her and
cut her throat; after which he skinned her and lopped off her head and
legs and she became a mere heap of flesh. Then said the Jew, “Slit open
the mule’s belly and enter it and I will sew it up on thee. There must
thou abide awhile and whatsoever thou seest in her belly, acquaint me
therewith.” So Janshah slit the mule’s belly and crept into it,
whereupon the merchant sewed it up on him and withdrew to a
distance,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

          Now when it was the Five Hundred and Seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the merchant sewed
up the mule’s belly on Janshah and, withdrawing to a distance, hid
himself in the skirts of the mountain. After a while a huge bird swooped
down on the dead mule and snatching it up, flew up with it to the top of
the mountain, where it set down the quarry and would have eaten it; but
Janshah, feeling the bird begin to feed, slit the mule’s belly and came
forth. When the bird saw him, it took fright at him and flew right away;
whereupon he stood up and looking right and left, saw nothing but the
carcasses of dead men, mummied by the sun, and exclaimed, “There is no
Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!”
Then he looked down the precipice and espied the merchant standing at
the mountain-foot, looking for him. As soon as the Jew caught sight of
him, he called out to him, “Throw me down of the stones which are about
thee, that I may direct thee to a way whereby thou mayst descend.” So
Janshah threw him down some two hundred of the stones, which were all
rubies,[544] chrysolites and other gems of price; after which he called
out to him, saying, “Show me the way down and I will throw thee as many
more.” But the Jew gathered up the stones and, binding them on the back
of the mule, went his way without answering a word and left Janshah
alone on the mountain-top. When the Prince found himself deserted, he
began to weep and implore help of Heaven, and thus he abode three days;
after which he rose and fared on over the mountainous ground two month’s
space, feeding upon hill-herbs; and he ceased not faring till he came to
its skirts and espied afar off a Wady full of fruitful trees and birds
harmonious singing the praises of Allah, the One, the Victorious. At
this sight he joyed with great joy and stayed not his steps till, after
an hour or so, he came to a ravine in the rocks, through which the
rain-torrents fell into the valley. He made his way down the cleft till
he reached the Wady which he had seen from the mountain-top and walked
on therein, gazing right and left, nor ceased so doing until he came in
sight of a great castle, towering high in air. As he drew near the gates
he saw an old man of comely aspect and face shining with light standing
thereat with a staff of carnelian in his hand, and going up to him,
saluted him. The Shaykh returned his salam and bade him welcome, saying,
“Sit down, O my son.” So he sat down at the door of the castle and the
old man said to him, “How camest thou to this land, untrodden by son of
Adam before thee, and whither art thou bound?” When Janshah heard his
words he wept bitterly at the thought of all the hardships he had
suffered and his tears choked his speech. Quoth the Shaykh, “O my son,
leave weeping; for indeed thou makest my heart ache.” So saying, he rose
and set somewhat of food before him and said to him, “Eat.” He ate and
praised Allah Almighty; after which the old man besought him saying, “O
my son, I would have thee tell me thy tale and acquaint me with thine
adventures.” So Janshah related to him all that had befallen him, from
first to last, whereat the Shaykh marvelled with exceeding marvel. Then
said the Prince, “Prithee inform me who is the lord of this valley and
to whom doth this great castle belong?” Answered the old man, “Know, O
my son, this valley and all that is therein and this castle with all it
containeth belong to the lord Solomon, son of David (on both be peace!).
As for me, my name is Shaykh Nasr,[545] King of the Birds; for thou must
know that the lord Solomon committed this castle to my charge,”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Five Hundred and Eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Shaykh Nasr
pursued, “Thou must know that the lord Solomon committed this castle to
my charge and taught me the language of birds and made me ruler over all
the fowls which be in the world; wherefore each and every come hither
once in the twelvemonth, and I pass them in review: then they depart;
and this is why I dwell here.” When Janshah heard this, he wept sore and
said to the Shaykh, “O my father, how shall I do to get back to my
native land?” Replied the old man, “Know, O my son, that thou art near
to the mountain Kaf, and there is no departing for thee from this place
till the birds come, when I will give thee in charge to one of them, and
he will bear thee to thy native country. Meanwhile tarry with me here
and eat and drink and divert thyself with viewing the apartments of this
castle.” So Janshah abode with Shaykh Nasr, taking his pleasure in the
Wady and eating of its fruits and laughing and making merry with the old
man, and leading a right joyous life till the day appointed for the
birds to pay their annual visit to their Governor. Thereupon the Shaykh
said to him, “O Janshah, take the keys of the castle and solace thyself
with exploring all its apartments and viewing whatever be therein, but
as regards such a room, beware and again beware of opening its door; and
if thou gainsay me and open it and enter therethrough nevermore shalt
thou know fair fortune.” He repeated this charge again and again with
much instance; then he went forth to meet the birds, which came up, kind
by kind, and kissed his hands. Such was his case; but as regards
Janshah, he went round about the castle, opening the various doors and
viewing the apartments into which they led, till he came to the room
which Shaykh Nasr had warned him not to open or enter. He looked at the
door and its fashion pleased him, for it had on it a padlock of gold,
and he said to himself, “This room must be goodlier than all the others;
would Heaven I wist what is within it, that Shaykh Nasr should forbid me
to open its door! There is no help but that I enter and see what is in
this apartment; for whatso is decreed unto the creature perforce he must
fulfil.” So he put out his hand and unlocked the door and entering,
found himself before a great basin; and hard by it stood a little
pavilion, builded all of gold and silver and crystal, with
lattice-windows of jacinth. The floor was paved with green beryl and
balass rubies and emeralds and other jewels, set in the ground-work
mosaic-fashion, and in the midmost of the pavilion was a jetting
fountain in a golden basin, full of water and girt about with figures of
beasts and birds, cunningly wrought of gold and silver and casting water
from their mouths. When the zephyr blew on them, it entered their ears
and therewith the figures sang out with birdlike song, each in its own
tongue. Beside the fountain was a great open saloon with a high daïs
whereon stood a vast throne of carnelian, inlaid with pearls and jewels,
over which was spread a tent of green silk fifty cubits in width and
embroidered with gems fit for seal-rings and purfled with precious
metals. Within this tent was a closet containing the carpet of the lord
Solomon (on whom be peace!); and the pavilion was compassed about with a
vast garden full of fruit-trees and streams; while near the palace were
beds of roses and basil and eglantine and all manner sweet-smelling
herbs and flowers. And the trees bore on the same boughs fruits fresh
and dry and the branches swayed gracefully to the wooing of the wind.
All this was in that one apartment and Janshah wondered thereat till he
was weary of wonderment; and he set out to solace himself in the palace
and the garden and to divert himself with the quaint and curious things
they contained. And first looking at the basin he saw that the gravels
of its bed were gems and jewels and noble metals; and many other strange
things were in that apartment.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Five Hundred and Ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Janshah saw many
strange things and admirable in that apartment. Then he entered the
pavilion and mounting the throne, fell asleep under the tent set up
thereover. He slept for a time and, presently awaking, walked forth and
sat down on a stool before the door. As he sat, marvelling at the
goodliness of that place, there flew up from mid-sky three birds, in
dove-form but big as eagles, and lighted on the brink of the basin,
where they sported awhile. Then they put off their feathers and became
three maidens,[546] as they were moons, that had not their like in the
whole world. They plunged into the basin and swam about and disported
themselves and laughed, while Janshah marvelled at their beauty and
loveliness and the grace and symmetry of their shapes. Presently, they
came up out of the water and began walking about and taking their solace
in the garden; and Janshah seeing them land was like to lose his wits.
He rose and followed them, and when he overtook them, he saluted them
and they returned his salam; after which quoth he, “Who are ye, O
illustrious Princesses, and whence come ye?” Replied the youngest
damsel, “We are from the invisible world of Almighty Allah and we come
hither to divert ourselves.” He marvelled at their beauty and said to
the youngest, “Have ruth on me and deign kindness to me and take pity on
my case and on all that hath befallen me in my life.” Rejoined she,
“Leave this talk and wend thy ways”; whereat the tears streamed from his
eyes, and he sighed heavily and repeated these couplets:—

 She shone out in the garden in garments all of green, ✿ With open vest
    and collars and flowing hair beseen:
 “What is thy name?” I asked her, and she replied, “I’m she ✿ Who roasts
    the hearts of lovers on coals of love and teen.”
 Of passion and its anguish to her I made my moan; ✿ “Upon a rock,” she
    answered, “thy plaints are wasted clean.”
 “Even if thy heart,” I told her, “be rock in very deed, ✿ Yet hath God
    made fair water well from the rock, I ween.”[547]

When the maidens heard his verses, they laughed and played and sang and
made merry. Then he brought them somewhat of fruit, and they ate and
drank and slept with him till the morning, when they donned their
feather-suits, and resuming dove shape flew off and went their way. But
as he saw them disappearing from sight, his reason well-nigh fled with
them, and he gave a great cry and fell down in a fainting fit and lay
a-swooning all that day. While he was in this case Shaykh Nasr returned
from the Parliament of the Fowls and sought for Janshah, that he might
send him with them to his native land, but found him not and knew that
he had entered the forbidden room. Now he had already said to the birds,
“With me is a young man, a mere youth, whom destiny brought hither from
a distant land; and I desire of you that ye take him up and carry him to
his own country.” And all answered, “We hear and we obey.” So he ceased
not searching for Janshah till he came to the forbidden door and seeing
it open he entered and found the Prince lying a-swoon under a tree. He
fetched scented waters and sprinkled them on his face, whereupon he
revived and turned——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
to say her permitted say.

           Now when it was the Five Hundred and Tenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Shaykh Nasr
saw Janshah lying a-swoon under the tree he fetched him somewhat of
scented waters and sprinkled them on his face. Thereupon he revived and
turned right and left, but seeing none by him save the Shaykh, sighed
heavily and repeated these couplets:—

 “Like fullest moon she shines on happiest night, ✿ Soft-sided fair, with
    slender shape bedight.
 Her eye-babes charm the world with gramarye; ✿ Her lips remind of rose
    and ruby light.
 Her jetty locks make night upon her hips; ✿ Ware, lovers, ware ye of
    that curl’s despight!
 Yea, soft her sides are, but in love her heart ✿ Out-hardens flint,
    surpasses syenite:
 And bows of eyebrows shower glancey shafts ✿ Despite the distance never
    fail to smite.
 Then, ah, her beauty! all the fair it passes; ✿ Nor any rival her who
    see the light.”

When Shaykh Nasr heard these verses, he said, “O my son, did I not warn
thee not to open that door and enter that room? But now, O my son, tell
me what thou sawest therein and acquaint me with all that betided thee.”
So Janshah related to him all that had passed between him and the three
maidens, and Shaykh Nasr, who sat listening in silence said, “Know, O my
son, that these three maidens are of the daughters of the Jann and come
hither every year for a day, to divert themselves and make merry until
mid-afternoon, when they return to their own country.” Janshah asked,
“And where is their country?”; and the old man answered, “By Allah, O my
son, I wot not:” presently adding, “but now take heart and put away this
love from thee and come with me, that I may send thee to thine own land
with the birds.” When Janshah heard this, he gave a great cry and fell
down in a trance; and presently he came to himself, and said, “O my
father, indeed I care not to return to my native land: all I want is to
foregather with these maidens and know, O my father, that I will never
again name my people, though I die before thee.” Then he wept and cried,
“Enough for me that I look upon the face of her I love, although it be
only once in the year!” And he sighed deeply and repeated these

 Would Heaven the Phantom[548] spared the friend at night ✿ And would
    this love for man were ever dight!
 Were not my heart a-fire for love of you, ✿ Tears ne’er had stained my
    cheeks nor dimmed my sight.
 By night and day, I bid my heart to bear ✿ Its griefs, while fires of
    love my body blight.

Then he fell at Shaykh Nasr’s feet and kissed them and wept sore,
crying, “Have pity on me, so Allah take pity on thee and aid me in my
strait so Allah aid thee!” Replied the old man, “By Allah, O my son, I
know nothing of these maidens nor where may be their country; but, O my
son, if thy heart be indeed set on one of them, tarry with me till this
time next year for they will assuredly reappear; and, when the day of
their coming draweth near, hide thyself under a tree in the garden. As
soon as they have alighted and doffed their feather-robes and plunged
into the lake and are swimming about at a distance from their clothes,
seize the vest of her whom thy soul desireth. When they see thee, they
will come a-bank and she, whose coat thou hast taken, will accost thee
and say to thee with the sweetest of speech and the most witching of
smiles, “Give me my dress, O my brother, that I may don it and veil my
nakedness withal.” But if thou yield to her prayer and give her back the
vest thou wilt never win thy wish: nay, she will don it and fly away to
her folk and thou wilt nevermore see her again. Now when thou hast
gained the vest, clap it under thine armpit and hold it fast, till I
return from the Parliament of the Fowls, when I will make accord between
thee and her and send thee back to thy native land, and the maiden with
thee. And this, O my son, is all I can do for thee, nothing more.”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

          Now when it was the Five Hundred and Eleventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that quoth Shaykh Nasr
to Janshah, “Hold fast the feather-robe of her thy soul desireth and
give it not back to her till I return from the Parliament of the Fowls.
And this, O my son, is all I can do for thee, nothing more.” When
Janshah heard this, his heart was solaced and he abode with Shaykh Nasr
yet another year, counting the days as they passed until the day of the
coming of the birds. And when at last the appointed time arrived the old
man said to him, “Do as I enjoined thee and charged thee with the
maidens in the matter of the feather-dress, for I go to meet the birds;”
and Janshah replied, “I hear and I obey, O my father.” Then the Shaykh
departed whilst the Prince walked into the garden and hid himself under
a tree, where none could see him. Here he abode a first day and a second
and a third, but the maidens came not; whereat he was sore troubled and
wept and sighed from a heart hard tried; and he ceased not weeping and
wailing till he fainted away. When he came to himself, he fell to
looking now at the basin and now at the welkin, and anon at the earth
and anon at the open country, whilst his heart grieved for stress of
love-longing. As he was in this case, behold, the three doves appeared
in the firmament, eagle-sized as before, and flew till they reached the
garden and lighted down beside the basin. They turned right and left;
but saw no one, man or Jann; so they doffed their feather-suits and
became three maidens. Then they plunged into the basin and swam about,
laughing and frolicking; and all were mother-naked and fair as bars of
virgin silver. Quoth the eldest, “O my sister, I fear lest there be some
one lying ambushed for us in the pavilion.” Answered the second, “O
sister, since the days of King Solomon, none hath entered the pavilion,
be he man or Jann;” and the youngest added, laughing, “By Allah, O my
sisters, if there be any hidden there, he will assuredly take none but
me.” Then they continued sporting and laughing and Janshah’s heart kept
fluttering for stress of passion: but he hid behind the tree so that he
saw without being seen. Presently they swam out to the middle of the
basin leaving their clothes on the bank. Hereupon he sprang to his feet,
and running like the darting leven to the basin’s brink, snatched up the
feather-vest of the youngest damsel, her on whom his heart was set and
whose name was Shamsah the Sun-maiden. At this the girls turned and
seeing him, were affrighted and veiled their shame from him in the
water. Then they swam near shore and looking on his favour saw that he
was bright faced as the moon on the night of fullness and asked him,
“Who art thou and how camest thou hither and why hast thou taken the
clothes of the lady Shamsah?”; and he answered, “Come hither to me and I
will tell you my tale.” Quoth Shamsah, “What deed is this, and why hast
thou taken my clothes, rather than those of my sisters?” Quoth he, “O
light of mine eyes, come forth of the water, and I will recount thee my
case and acquaint thee why I chose thee out.” Quoth she, “O my lord and
coolth of my eyes and fruit of my heart, give me my clothes, that I may
put them on and cover my nakedness withal; then will I come forth to
thee.” But he replied, “O Princess of beautiful ones, how can I give
thee back thy clothes and slay myself for love-longing? Verily, I will
not give them to thee, till Shaykh Nasr, the king of the birds, shall
return.” Quoth she, “If thou wilt not give me my clothes withdraw a
little apart from us, that my sisters may land and dress themselves and
lend me somewhat wherewithal to cover my shame.” “I hear and obey,”
answered he, and walked away from them into the pavilion, whereupon the
three Princesses came out and the two elder, donning their dress, gave
Shamsah somewhat thereof, not enough to fly withal, and she put it on
and came forth of the water, and stood before him, as she were the
rising full-moon or a browsing gazelle. Then Shamsah entered the
pavilion, where Janshah was still sitting on the throne; so she saluted
him and taking seat near him, said, “O fair of face, thou hast undone
thyself and me; but tell us thy adventures that we may ken how it is
with thee.” At these words he wept till he drenched his dress with his
tears; and when she saw that he was distracted for love of her, she rose
and taking him by the hand, made him sit by her side and wiped away the
drops with her sleeve; and said she, “O fair of face, leave this weeping
and tell us thy tale.” So he related to her all that had befallen him
and described to her all he had seen,——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

          Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twelfth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the lady
Shamsah said to Janshah, “Tell us thy tale;” so he related to her all
that had befallen him; and, after she had lent attentive ear she sighed
and said, “O my lord, since thou art so fondly in love with me, give me
my dress, that I may fly to my folk, I and my sisters, and tell them
what affection thou hast conceived for me, and after I will come back to
thee and carry thee to thine own country.” When he heard this, he wept
sore and replied, “Is it lawful to thee before Allah to slay me
wrongfully?” She asked, “O my lord, why should I do such wrongous
deed?”; and he answered, “If I give thee thy gear thou wilt fly away
from me, and I shall die forthright.” Princess Shamsah laughed at this
and so did her sisters; then said she to him, “Be of good cheer and keep
thine eyes cool and clear, for I must needs marry thee.” So saying, she
bent down to him and embraced him and pressing him to her breast kissed
him between the eyes and on his cheeks. They clipped and clasped each
other awhile, after which they drew apart and sat down on the throne.
Then the eldest Princess went out into the garden and, plucking somewhat
of fruits and flowers, brought them into the pavilion; and they ate and
drank and laughed and sported and made merry. Now Janshah was singular
in beauty and loveliness and slender shape and symmetry and grace, and
the Princess Shamsah said to him, “O my beloved, by Allah, I love thee
with exceeding love and will never leave thee!” When he heard her words,
his breast broadened and he laughed for joy till he showed his teeth;
and they abode thus awhile in mirth and gladness and frolic. And when
they were at the height of their pleasure and joyance, behold, Shaykh
Nasr returned from the Parliament of the Fowls and came in to them;
whereupon they all rose to him and saluted him and kissed his hands. He
gave them welcome and bade them be seated. So they sat down and he said
to Princess Shamsah, “Verily this youth loveth thee with exceeding love;
Allah upon thee, deal kindly with him, for he is of the great ones of
mankind and of the sons of the kings, and his father ruleth over the
land of Kabul and his reign compasseth a mighty empire.” Quoth she, “I
hear and I obey thy behest”; and, kissing the Shaykh’s hands, stood
before him in respect. Quoth he, “If thou say sooth, swear to me by
Allah that thou wilt never betray him, what while thou abidest in the
bonds of life.” So she swore a great oath that she would never betray
Janshah, but would assuredly marry him, and added, “Know, O Shaykh Nasr,
that I never will forsake him.” The Shaykh believed in her oath and said
to Janshah, “Thanks be to Allah, who hath made you arrive at this
understanding!” Hereupon the Prince rejoiced with exceeding joy, and he
and Shamsah abode three months with Shaykh Nasr, feasting and toying and
making merry.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Five Hundred and Thirteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that, Janshah and the
lady Shamsah abode three months with Shaykh Nasr, feasting and toying
and making merry. And at the end of that time she said to Janshah, “I
wish to go with thee to thy motherland, where thou shalt marry me and we
will abide there.” “To hear is to obey,” answered he and took counsel
with Shaykh Nasr, who said to him, “Go thou home, I commend her to thy
care.” Then said she, “O Shaykh Nasr, bid him render me my
feather-suit.” So the Shaykh bade Janshah give it to her, and he went
straightways into the pavilion and brought it out for her. Thereupon she
donned it and said to him, “Mount my back and shut thine eyes and stop
thine ears, so thou mayst not hear the roar of the revolving sphere; and
keep fast hold of my feathers, lest thou fall off.” He did as she bade
him and, as she stretched her wings to fly, Shaykh Nasr said, “Wait a
while till I describe to thee the land Kabul, lest you twain miss your
way.” So she delayed till he had said his say and had bidden them
farewell, commending the Prince to her care. She took leave of her
sisters and bade them return to her folk and tell them what had befallen
her with Janshah; then, rising into the air without stay or delay she
flew off, like the wafts of the wind or the lamping leven. Her sisters
also took flight and returning home delivered her message to their
people. And she stayed not her course from the forenoon till the hour of
mid-afternoon prayer (Janshah being still on her back), when she espied
afar off a Wady abounding in trees and streams and she said to Janshah,
“I am thinking to alight in this valley, that we may solace ourselves
amongst its trees and herbage and here rest for the night.” Quoth he,
“Do what seemeth meet to thee!” So she swooped down from the lift and
alighted in the Wady, when Janshah dismounted and kissing her between
the eyes,[549] sat with her awhile on the bank of a river there; then
they rose and wandered about the valley, taking their pleasure therein
and eating of the fruits of the trees, until nightfall, when they lay
down under a tree and slept till the morning dawned. As soon as it was
day, the Princess arose and, bidding Janshah mount, flew on with him
till noon, when she perceived by the appearance of the buildings which
Shaykh Nasr had described to her, that they were nearing the city Kabul.
So she swooped down from the welkin and alighted in a wide plain, a
blooming champaign, wherein were gazelles straying and springs playing
and rivers flowing and ripe fruits growing. So Janshah dismounted and
kissed her between the eyes; and she asked him, “O my beloved and coolth
of mine eyes, knowest thou how many days’ journey we have come since
yesterday?”; and he answered, “No,” when she said, “We have come thirty
months’ journey.” Quoth he, “Praised be Allah for safety!” Then they sat
down side by side and ate and drank and toyed and laughed. And whilst
they were thus pleasantly engaged, behold, there came up to them two of
the King’s Mamelukes of those who had been of the Prince’s company; one
of them was he whom he had left with the horses, when he embarked in the
fishing-boat and the other had been of his escort in the chase. As soon
as they saw Janshah, both knew him and saluted him; then said they,
“With thy leave, we will go to thy sire and bear him the glad tidings of
thy coming.” Replied the Prince, “Go ye to my father and acquaint him
with my case, and fetch us tents, for we will tarry here seven days to
rest ourselves till he make ready his retinue to meet us, that we may
enter in stateliest state.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Five Hundred and Fourteenth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Janshah said
to the two Mamelukes, “Go ye to my sire and acquaint him with my case
and fetch us tents, for we will abide here seven days to rest ourselves,
till he make ready his retinue to meet us, that we may enter in the
stateliest state.” So the officers hastened back to King Teghmus and
said to him, “Good news, O King of the age!” Asked he, “What good
tidings bring ye: is my son Janshah come back?”; and they answered,
“Yes, thy son Janshah hath returned from his strangerhood and is now
near at hand in the Kirání mead.” Now when the King heard this, he joyed
with great joy and fell down in a swoon for excess of gladness; then,
coming to himself, he bade his Wazir give each of the Mamelukes a
splendid suit of honour and a sum of money. The minister replied, “I
hear and obey,” and forthright did his bidding and said to them, “Take
this in turn for the good tidings ye bring, whether ye lie or say
sooth.” They replied, “Indeed we lie not, for but now we sat with him
and saluted him and kissed his hands and he bade us fetch him tents, for
that he would sojourn in the meadow seven days, till such time as the
Wazirs and Emirs and Grandees should come out to meet him.” Quoth the
King, “How is it with my son?” and quoth they, “He hath with him a
Houri, as he had brought her out of Paradise.” At this, King Teghmus
bade beat the kettledrums and sound the trumpets for gladness, and
despatched messengers to announce the good news to Janshah’s mother and
to the wives of the Emirs and Wazirs and Lords of the realm: so the
criers spread themselves about the city and acquainted the people with
the coming of Prince Janshah. Then the King made ready, and, setting out
for the Kirani meadow with his horsemen and footmen, came upon Janshah
who was sitting at rest with the lady Shamsah beside him and, behold,
all suddenly drew in sight. The Prince rose to his feet and walked
forward to meet them; and the troops knew him and dismounted, to salute
him and kiss his hands: after which he set out preceded by the men in
single file till he came to his sire, who, at sight of his son threw
himself from his horse’s back and clasped him to his bosom and wept
flooding tears of joy. Then they took horse again with the retinue
riding to the right and left and fared forward till they came to the
river-banks; when the troops alighted and pitched their tents and
pavilions and standards to the blare of trump and the piping of fife and
the dub-a-dub of drum and tom-tom. Moreover the King bade the
tent-pitchers set up a pavilion of red silk for the Princess Shamsah,
who put off her scanty raiment of feathers for fine robes and, entering
the pavilion, there took seat. And as she sat in her beauty, behold, the
King and his son Janshah came in to her, and when she saw Teghmus, she
rose and kissed ground before him. The King sat down and seating Janshah
on his right hand and Princess Shamsah on his left, bade her welcome and
said to his son, “Tell me all that hath befallen thee in this thy long
strangerhood.” So Janshah related to him the whole of his adventures
from first to last, whereat he marvelled with exceeding marvel and
turning to the Princess, said, “Laud to Allah for that He hath caused
thee to reunite me with my son! ‘Verily this is of His exceeding
bounty!’”[550]——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Five Hundred and Fifteenth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that King Teghmus
said to the lady Shamsah, “Laud to Allah for that He hath caused thee to
reunite me with my son! ‘Verily this is of His exceeding bounty.’ And
now I would have thee ask of me what thou wilt, that I may do it in
thine honour.” Quoth she, “I ask of thee that thou build me a palace in
the midst of a flower-garden, with water running under it.” And the King
answered, “I hear and obey.” And behold, up came Janshah’s mother,
attended by all the wives of the Wazirs and Emirs and nobles and city
notables. When her son had sight of her, he rose and leaving the tent,
went forth to meet her and they embraced a long while, whilst the Queen
wept for excess of joy and with tears trickling from her eyes repeated
the following verses:—

 Joy so o’ercometh me, for stress of joy ✿ In that which gladdeneth me I
    fain shed tears:—
 Tears are become your nature, O my eyes, ✿ Who weep for joyance as for
    griefs and fears.

And they complained to each other of all their hearts had suffered from
the long separation. Then the King departed to his pavilion and Janshah
carried his mother to his own tent, where they sat talking till there
came up some of the lady Shamsah’s attendants who said, “The Princess is
now walking hither in order to salute thee.” When the Queen heard this,
she rose and going to meet Shamsah, saluted her and seated her awhile by
her side. Presently the Queen and her retinue of noble women, the
spouses of the Emirs and Grandees, returned with Princess Shamsah to the
tent occupied by her daughter-in-law and sat there. Meanwhile, King
Teghmus gave great largesse to his levies and lieges and rejoiced in his
son with exceeding joy, and they tarried there ten days, feasting and
merry-making and living a most joyous life. At the end of this time, the
King commanded a march and they all returned to the capital, so he took
horse surrounded by all the troops with the Wazirs and Chamberlains to
his right and left: nor ceased they faring till they entered the city,
which was decorated after the goodliest fashion; for the folk had
adorned the houses with precious stuffs and jewellery and spread costly
brocades under the hoofs of the horses. The drums beat for glad tidings
and the Grandees of the kingdom rejoiced and brought rich gifts and the
lookers on were filled with amazement. Furthermore, they fed the
mendicants and Fakirs and held high festival for the space of ten days,
and the lady Shamsah joyed with exceeding joy whenas she saw this. Then
King Teghmus summoned architects and builders and men of art and bade
them build a palace in that garden. So they straightway proceeded to do
his bidding; and, when Janshah knew of his sire’s command, he caused the
artificers to fetch a block of white marble and carve it and hollow it
in the semblance of a chest; which being done, he took the feather-vest
of Princess Shamsah wherewith she had flown with him through the air:
then, sealing the cover with melted lead, he ordered them to bury the
box in the foundations and build over it the arches whereon the palace
was to rest. They did as he bade them, nor was it long before the palace
was finished: then they furnished it and it was a magnificent edifice,
standing in the midst of the garden, with streams flowing under its
walls.[551] Upon this the King caused Janshah’s wedding to be celebrated
with the greatest splendour and they brought the bride to the castle in
state procession and went their ways. When the lady Shamsah entered, she
smelt the scent of her feather-gear——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Five Hundred and Sixteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the lady
Shamsah entered the new palace, she smelt the scent of her flying
feather-gear and knew where it was and determined to take it. So she
waited till midnight, when Janshah was drowned in sleep; then she rose
and going straight to the place where the marble-coffer was buried under
the arches she hollowed the ground alongside till she came upon it; when
she removed the lead wherewith it was soldered and, taking out the
feather-suit, put it on. Then she flew high in air and perching on the
pinnacle of the palace, cried out to those who were therein, saying, “I
pray you fetch me Janshah, that I may bid him farewell.” So they told
him and he came out and, seeing her on the terrace-roof of the palace,
clad in her feather-raiment, asked her, “Why hast thou done this deed?”;
and she answered “O my beloved and coolth of mine eyes and fruit of my
heart, by Allah, I love thee passing dear and I rejoice with exceeding
joy in that I have restored thee to thy friends and country and thou
hast seen thy mother and father. And now, if thou love me as I love
thee, come to me at Takní, the Castle of Jewels.” So saying, she flew
away forthright to find her family and friends, and Janshah fell down
fainting, being well-nigh dead for despair. They carried the news to
King Teghmus, who mounted at once and riding to the palace, found his
son lying senseless on the ground; whereat he wept knowing that the
swoon was caused by the loss of his love, and sprinkled rose-water on
his face.[552] When the Prince came to himself and saw his sire sitting
at his head, he wept at the thought of losing his wife and the King
asked what had befallen him. So he replied, “Know, O my father, that the
lady Shamsah is of the daughters of the Jann and she hath done such and
such” (telling him all that had happened); and the King said, “O my son,
be not troubled and thus concerned, for I will assemble all the
merchants and wayfarers in the land and enquire of them anent that
castle. If we can find out where it is, we will journey thither and
demand the Princess Shamsah of her people; and we hope in Allah the
Almighty that He will give her back to thee and thou shalt consummate
thy marriage.” Then he went out and, calling his four Wazirs without
stay or delay, bade them assemble all the merchants and voyagers in the
city and question them of Takni, the Castle of Jewels, adding, “Whoso
knoweth it and can guide us thither, I will surely give him fifty
thousand gold pieces.” The Wazirs accordingly went forth at once and did
as the King bade them, but neither trader nor traveller could give them
news of Takni, the Castle of Jewels; so they returned and told the King.
Thereupon he bade bring beautiful slave-girls and concubines and singers
and players upon instruments of music, whose like are not found but with
the Kings: and sent them to Janshah, so haply they might divert him from
the love of the lady Shamsah. Moreover, he despatched couriers and spies
to all the lands and islands and climes, to enquire for Takni, the
Castle of Jewels, and they made quest for it two months long, but none
could give them news thereof. So they returned and told the King,
whereupon he wept bitter tears and going in to his son found Janshah
sitting amidst the concubines and singers and players on harp and zither
and so forth, not one of whom could console him for the lady Shamsah.
Quoth Teghmus, “O my son, I can find none who knoweth this Castle of
Jewels; but I will bring thee a fairer than she.” When Janshah heard
this, his eyes ran over with tears and he recited these two couplets:—

 Patience hath fled, but passion fareth not; ✿ And all my frame with pine
    is fever-hot:
 When will the days my lot with Shamsah join? ✿ Lo, all my bones with
    passion-lowe go rot!

Now there was a deadly feud between King Teghmus and a certain King of
Hind, by name Kafíd, who had great plenty of troops and warriors and
champions; and under his hand were a thousand puissant chieftains, each
ruling over a thousand tribes whereof every one could muster four
thousand cavaliers. He reigned over a thousand cities each guarded by a
thousand forts and he had four Wazirs and under him ruled Emirs, Princes
and Sovereigns; and indeed he was a King of great might and prowess
whose armies filled the whole earth. Now King Teghmus had made war upon
him and ravaged his reign and slain his men and of his treasures had
made gain. But when it came to King Kafid’s knowledge that King Teghmus
was occupied with the love of his son, so that he neglected the affairs
of the state and his troops were grown few and weak by reason of his
care and concern for his son’s state, he summoned his Wazirs and Emirs
and said to them, “Ye all know that whilom King Teghmus invaded our
dominions and plundered our possessions and slew my father and brethren,
nor indeed is there one of you, but he hath harried his lands and
carried off his goods and made prize of his wives and slain some kinsmen
of his. Now I have heard this day that he is absorbed in the love of his
son Janshah, and that his troops are grown few and weak; and this is the
time to take our blood-revenge on him. So make ready for the march and
don ye your harness of battle; and let nothing stay or delay you, and we
will go to him and fall upon him and slay him and his son, and possess
ourselves of his reign.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Five Hundred and Seventeenth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Kafid, King
of Hind, commanded his troops and armies to mount and make for the
dominions of King Teghmus, saying, “Get ye ready for the march and don
ye your harness of war; and let nothing stay or delay you; so we will go
to him and fall upon him and slay him and his son and possess ourselves
of his reign.” They all answered with one voice, saying, “We hear and
obey,” and fell at once to equipping themselves and levying troops; and
they ceased not their preparations for three months and, when all was in
readiness, they beat the drums and sounded the trumps and flew the flags
and banners: then King Kafid set out at the head of his host and they
fared on till they reached the frontiers of the land of Kabul, the
dominions of King Teghmus, where they began to harry the land and do
havoc among the folk, slaughtering the old and taking the young
prisoners. When the news reached King Teghmus, he was wroth with
exceeding wrath and assembling his Grandees and officers of state, said
to them, “Know that Kafid hath come to our land and hath entered the
realm we command and is resolved to fight us hand to hand; and he
leadeth troops and champions and warriors, whose number none knoweth
save Allah Almighty; what deme deem ye?” Replied they, “O King of the
age, let us go out to him and give him battle and drive him forth of our
country; and thus deem we.” So he bade them prepare for battle and
brought forth to them hauberks and cuirasses and helmets and swords and
all manner of warlike gear, such as lay low warriors and do to death the
champions of mankind. So the troops and braves and champions flocked
together and they set up the standards and beat the drums and sounded
the trumpets and clashed the cymbals and piped on the pipes; and King
Teghmus marched out at the head of his army, to meet the hosts of Hind.
And when he drew near the foe, he called a halt, and encamping with his
host in the Zahrán Valley,[553] hard by the frontier of Kabul despatched
to King Kafid by messenger the following letter:—“Know that what thou
hast done is of the doings of the villain rabble and wert thou indeed a
King, the son of a King, thou hadst not done thus, nor hadst thou
invaded my kingdom and slain my subjects and plundered their property
and wrought unright upon them. Knowest thou not that all this is the
fashion of a tyrant? Verily, had I known that thou durst harry my
dominions, I had come to thee before thy coming and had prevented thee
this long while since. Yet, even now, if thou wilt retire and leave
mischief between us and thee, well and good; but if thou return not,
meet me in the listed field and measure thyself with me in cut and
thrust.” Lastly he sealed his letter and committed to an officer of his
army and sent with him spies to spy him out news. The messenger fared
forth with the missive and, drawing near the enemy’s camp, he descried a
multitude of tents of silk and satin, with pennons of blue sendal, and
amongst them a great pavilion of red satin, surrounded by a host of
guards. He ceased not to advance till he made this tent and found on
asking that it was that of King Kafid whom he saw seated on a chair set
with jewels, in the midst of his Wazirs and Emirs and Grandees. So he
brought out the letter and straightway there came up to him a company of
guards, who took it from him and carried it to the King; and Kafid read
it and wrote a reply to this purport:—“After the usual invocations, We
let King Teghmus know that we mean to take our blood-revenge on thee and
wash out our stain and waste thy reign and rend the curtain in twain and
slay the old men and enslave the young men. But to-morrow, come thou
forth to combat in the open plain, and to show thee thrust and fight
will I deign.” Then he sealed the letter and delivered it to the
messenger, who carried it to King Teghmus——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Five Hundred and Eighteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that King Kafid
delivered the answering letter to the messenger who carried it to King
Teghmus and delivered it, after kissing the ground between his hands.
Then he reported all that he had seen, saying, “O King of the age, I
espied warriors and horsemen and footmen beyond count nor can I assist
thee to the amount.” When Teghmus read the reply and comprehended its
contents, he was with furious rage enraged and bade his Wazir Ayn Zar
take horse and fall upon the army of Kafid with a thousand cavaliers, in
the middle watch of the night when they would easily ride home and slay
all before them. Ayn Zar replied, “I hear and I obey,” and at once went
forth to do his bidding. Now King Kafid had a Wazir, Ghatrafán[554] by
name, whom he bade take five thousand horse and attack the host of King
Teghmus in like manner. So Ghatrafan did his bidding and set out on his
enterprise marching till midnight. Thus the two parties met halfway and
the Wazir Ghatrafan fell upon the Wazir Ayn Zar. Then man cried out
against man and there befel sore battle between them till break of day,
when Kafid’s men were routed and fled back to their King in confusion.
As Kafid saw this, he was wroth beyond measure and said to the
fugitives, “Woe to you! What hath befallen you, that ye have lost your
captains?” and they replied, “O King of the age, as the Wazir Ghatrafan
rode forth to fall upon King Teghmus, there appeared to us halfway and
when night was half over, the Wazir Ayn Zar, with cavaliers and
champions, and we met on the slopes of Wady Zahran; but ere we were ware
we found ourselves in the enemy’s midst, eye meeting eye; and we fought
a fierce fight with them from midnight till morning, many on either side
being slain. Then the Wazir and his men fell to shouting and smiting the
elephants on the face till they took fright at their furious blows, and
turning tail to flee, trampled down the horsemen, whilst none could see
other for the clouds of dust. The blood ran like a rain-torrent and had
we not fled, we had all been cut off to the last man.” When King Kafid
heard this, he exclaimed, “May the sun not bless you and may he be wroth
with you and sore be his wrath!” Meanwhile Ayn Zar, the Wazir, returned
to King Teghmus and told him what had happened. The King gave him joy of
his safety and rejoiced greatly and bade beat the drums and sound the
trumpets, in honour of the victory; after which he called the roll of
his troops and behold, two hundred of his stoutest champions had fallen.
Then King Kafid marched his army into the field and drew them out
ordered for battle in fifteen lines of ten thousand horse each, under
the command of three hundred captains, mounted on elephants and chosen
from amongst the doughtiest of his warriors and his champions. So he set
up his standards and banners and beat the drums and blew the trumpets
whilst the braves sallied forth, offering battle. As for King Teghmus,
he drew out his troops line after line and lo! there were ten of ten
thousand horse each, and with him were an hundred champions, riding on
his right hand and on his left. Then fared forward to the fight each
renowned knight, and the hosts clashed together in their might, whilst
the earth for all its wideness was straitened because of the multitude
of the cavaliers and ears were deafened by drums and cymbals beating and
pipes and hautboys sounding and trumpets blaring and by the thunder of
horse-tramp and the shouting of men. The dust arched in canopy over
their heads and they fought a sore fight from the first of the day till
the fall of darkness, when they separated and each army drew off to its
own camp.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

         Now when it was the Five Hundred and Nineteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that each army drew off
to its own camp. Then King Kafid called the roll of his troops and,
finding that he had lost five thousand men, raged with great rage; and
King Teghmus mustered his men and seeing that of them were slain three
thousand riders, the bravest of his braves, was wroth with exceeding
wrath. On the morrow King Kafid again pushed into the plain and did duty
as before, while each man strave his best to snatch victory for himself;
and Kafid cried out to his men, saying, “Is there any of you will sally
forth into the field and open us the chapter of fray and fight?” And
behold came out from the ranks a warrior named Barkayk, a mighty man of
war who, when he reached the King, alighted from his elephant and
kissing the earth before him, sought of him leave to challenge the foe
to combat singular. Then he mounted his elephant and driving into
mid-field, cried out, “Who is for duello, who is for derring-do, who is
for knightly devoir?” When King Teghmus heard this, he said to his
troops, “Which of you will do single battle with this sworder?” And
behold, a cavalier came out from the ranks, mounted on a charger, mighty
of make, and driving up to the King kissed the earth before him and
craved his permission to engage Barkayk. Then he mounted again and
charged at Barkayk, who said to him, “Who art thou and what art thou
called, that thou makest mock of me by coming out against me and
challenging me, alone?” “My name is Ghazanfar[555] son of Kamkhíl,”
replied the Kabul champion; and the other, “I have heard tell of thee in
my own country; so up and do battle between the ranks of the braves!”
Hearing these words Ghazanfar drew a mace of iron from under his thigh
and Barkayk took his good sword in hand, and they laid on load till
Barkayk smote Ghazanfar on the head with his blade, but the morion
turned the blow and no hurt befel him therefrom; whereupon Ghazanfar, in
his turn, dealt Barkayk so terrible a stroke on the head with his mace,
that he levelled him down to his elephant’s back and slew him. With this
out sallied another and crying to Ghazanfar, “Who be thou that thou
shouldst slay my brother?”; hurled a javelin at him with such force that
it pierced his thigh and nailed his coat of mail to his flesh. Then
Ghazanfar, feeling his hurt, hent his sword in hand and smote at
Barkayk’s brother and cut him in sunder, and he fell to the earth,
wallowing in his life-blood; whilst the challenger of Kabul galloped
back to King Teghmus. Now when Kafid saw the death of his champions, he
cried out to his troops, saying, “Down with you to the plain and strike
with might and main!” as also did King Teghmus, and the two armies
fought the fiercest of fights. Horse neighed against horse and man cried
out upon man and brands were bared, whilst the drums beat and the
trumpets blared; and horseman charged upon horseman and every brave of
renown pushed forward, whilst the faint-heart fled from the lunge of
lance and men heard nought but slogan-cry and the clash and clang of
armoury. Slain were the warriors that were slain[556] and they stayed
not from the mellay till the decline of the sun in the heavenly dome,
when the Kings drew off their armies and returned each to its own
camp.[557] Then King Teghmus took tally of his men and found that he had
lost five thousand, and four standards had been broken to bits, whereat
he was sore an-angered; whilst King Kafid in like manner counted his
troops and found that he had lost six hundred, the bravest of his
braves, and nine standards were wanting to the full tale. The two armies
ceased joining battle and rested on their arms three days’ space, after
which Kafid wrote a letter and sent it by messenger to a King called
Fákun al-Kalb (with whom he claimed kinship by the spindle side): and
this kinsman forthwith mustered his men and marched to meet the King of
Hind.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

         Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twentieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that King Fakun
mustered his men and marched to meet the King of Hind: and whileas King
Teghmus was sitting at his pleasance, there came one in to him and said,
“I see from afar a cloud of dust spireing high in air and overspreading
the lift.” So he commanded a company to fare forth and learn the meaning
of this; and, crying, “To hear is to obey,” they sallied out and
presently returned and said to him, “O King, when we drew near the cloud
of dust, the wind rent it and it lifted and showed seven standards and
under each standard three thousand horse, making for King Kafid’s camp.”
Then King Fakun joined himself to the King of Hind and saluting him,
asked, “How is it with thee, and what be this war in which thou
warrest?”; and Kafid answered, “Knowest thou not that King Teghmus is my
enemy and the murtherer of my father and brothers? Wherefore I am come
forth to do battle with him and take my blood-wreak on him.” Quoth
Fakun, “The blessing of the sun be upon thee!”; and the King of Hind
carried King Fakun al-Kalb to his tent and rejoiced in him with
exceeding joy. Such was the case of the two hostile Kings; but as
regards King Janshah, he abode two months shut up in his palace, without
seeing his father or allowing one of the damsels in his service to come
in to him; at the end of which time he grew troubled and restless and
said to his attendants, “What aileth my father that he cometh not to
visit me?” They told him that he had gone forth to do battle with King
Kafid, whereupon quoth Janshah, “Bring me my steed, that I may go to my
sire.” They replied, “We hear and obey,” and brought his horse; but he
said in himself, “I am taken up with the thought of myself and my love
and I deem well to mount and ride for the city of the Jews, where haply
Allah shall grant me the boon to meet the merchant who hired me for the
ruby-business and may be he will deal with me as he dealt before, for
none knoweth whence good cometh.” So he took with him a thousand horse
and set out, the folk saying, “At last Janshah hath fared forth to join
his father in the field, and to fight by his side;” and they stinted not
pushing on till dusk, when they halted for the night in a vast meadow.
As soon as he knew that all his men were asleep, the Prince rose privily
and girding his waist, mounted his horse and rode away intending to make
Baghdad, because he had heard from the Jews that a caravan came thence
to their city once in every two years and he made up his mind to journey
thither with the next Cafilah. When his men awoke and missed the Prince
and his horse, they mounted and sought him right and left but, finding
no trace of him, rejoined his father and told him what his son had done;
whereat he was wroth beyond measure and cast the crown from his head,
whilst the sparks were like to fly from his mouth, and he said “There is
no Majesty and there is no Might but in Allah! Verily I have lost my
son, and the enemy is still before me.” But his Wazirs and vassals said
to him, “Patience, O King of the age! Patience bringeth weal in wake.”
Meanwhile Janshah, parted from his lover and pained for his father, was
in sore sorrow and dismay, with heart seared and eyes tear-bleared and
unable to sleep night or day. But when his father heard the loss his
host had endured, he declined battle, and fled before King Kafid; and,
retiring to his city, closed the gates and strengthened the walls.
Thereupon King Kafid followed him and sat down before the town, offering
battle seven nights and eight days, after which he withdrew to his
tents, to tend his wounded while the citizens defended themselves as
they best could, fortifying the place and setting up mangonels and other
engines on the walls. Such was the condition of the two Kings, and war
raged between them for a space of seven years.——And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twenty-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Kings Teghmus and
Kafid continued in this condition for seven years; but, as regards
Janshah, he rode through wild and wold and whenever he came to a town he
asked anent Takni, the Castle of Jewels, but none knew of it and all
answered, “Of a truth we never heard of such place, not even by name.”
At last he happened to enquire concerning the city of the Jews from a
merchant who told him that it was situate in the extreme Orient, adding,
“A caravan will start this very month for the city of Mizrakán in Hind;
whither do thou accompany us and we will fare on to Khorasan and thence
to the city of Shima’ún and Khwárazm, from which latter place the City
of the Jews is distant a year and three months’ journey.” So Janshah
waited till the departure of the caravan, when he joined himself thereto
and journeyed, till he reached the city of Mizrakan whence, after vainly
asking for Takni, the Castle of Jewels, he set out and enduring on the
way great hardships and perils galore and the extreme of hunger and
thirst, he arrived at the town of Shima’un. Here he made enquiry for the
City of the Jews, and they directed him to the road thither. So he fared
forth and journeyed days and nights till he came to the place where he
had given the apes the slip, and continued his journey thence to the
river, on the opposite bank of which stood the City of the Jews. He sat
down on the shore and waited till the Sabbath came round and the river
dried up by decree of Allah Almighty, when he crossed over to the
opposite bank and, entering the city, betook himself to the house
wherein he had lodged on his former journey. The Jew and his family
saluted him and rejoiced in his return and, setting meat and drink
before him, asked, “Where hast thou been during thine absence?”; and he
answered, “In the kingdom of Almighty Allah!”[558] He lay with them that
night and on the morrow he went out to solace himself with a walk about
the city and presently heard a crier crying aloud and saying, “O folk,
who will earn a thousand gold pieces and a fair slave-girl and do half a
day’s work for us?” So Janshah went up to him and said, “I will do this
work.”[559] Quoth the crier, “Follow me,” and carrying him to the house
of the Jew merchant, where he had been aforetime, said, “This young man
will do thy need.” The merchant not recognising him gave him welcome and
carried him into the Harim, where he set meat and drink before him, and
he ate and drank. Then he brought him the money and formally made over
to him the handsome slave-girl with whom he lay that night. As soon as
morning dawned, he took the dinars and the damsel and, committing them
to his Jew host with whom he had lodged aforetime, returned to the
merchant, who mounted and rode out with him, till they came to the foot
of the tall and towering mountain, where the merchant, bringing out a
knife and cords, said to Janshah, “Throw the mare.” So he threw her and
bound her four legs with the cords and slaughtered her and cut off her
head and four limbs and slit her belly, as ordered by the Jew; whereupon
quoth he, “Enter her belly, till I sew it up on thee; and whatsoever
thou seest therein, tell me of it, for this is the work whose wage thou
hast taken.” So Janshah entered the mare’s belly and the merchant sewed
it up on him; then, withdrawing to a fair distance, hid himself. And
after an hour a great bird swooped down from the lift and, snatching up
the carcass in his pounces soared high toward the sky. Then he perched
upon the mountain-peak and would have eaten the prey, but Janshah
sensing his intent took out his knife and slit the mare’s belly and came
forth. The bird was scared at his sight and flew away, and Janshah went
up to a place whence he could see below, and looking down, espied the
merchant standing at the foot of the mountain, as he were a sparrow. So
he cried out to him, “What is thy will, O merchant?” Replied the Jew,
“Throw me down of the stones that lie about thee, that I may direct thee
in the way down.” Quoth Janshah, “Thou art he who didst with me thus and
thus five years ago, and through thee I suffered hunger and thirst and
sore toil and much trouble; and now thou hast brought me hither once
more and thinkest to destroy me. By Allah, I will not throw thee aught!”
So saying, he turned from him and set out for where lived Shaykh Nasr,
the King of the Birds.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twenty-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Janshah took the
way for where lived Shaykh Nasr, the King of the Birds. And he ceased
not faring on many days and nights, tearful-eyed and heavy-hearted;
eating, when he was anhungered, of the growth of the ground and
drinking, when he thirsted, of its streams, till he came in sight of the
Castle of the lord Solomon and saw Shaykh Nasr sitting at the gate. So
he hastened up to him and kissed his hands; and the Shaykh saluted him
and bade him welcome and said to him, “O my son, what aileth thee that
thou returnest to this place, after I sent thee home with the Princess
Shamsah, cool of eyes and broad of breast?” Janshah wept and told him
all that had befallen him and how she had flown away from him, saying,
“An thou love me, come to me in Takni, the Castle of Jewels;” at which
the old man marvelled and said, “By Allah, O my son, I know it not, nor,
by the virtue of our lord Solomon, have I ever in my life heard its
name!” Quoth Janshah, “What shall I do? I am dying of love and longing.”
Quoth Shaykh Nasr, “Take patience until the coming of the birds, when we
will enquire at them of Takni, the Castle of Jewels; haply one of them
shall wot thereof.” So Janshah’s heart was comforted and, entering the
Palace, he went straight to the chamber which gave upon the Lake in
which he had seen the three maidens. After this he abode with Shaykh
Nasr for a while and, one day as he was sitting with him, the Shaykh
said, “O my son, rejoice for the time of the birds’ coming draweth
nigh.” Janshah gladdened to hear the news; and after a few days the
birds began to come and Shaykh Nasr said to him, “O my son, learn these
names[560] and address thyself with me to meet the birds.” Presently,
the fowls came flying up and saluted Shaykh Nasr, kind after kind, and
he asked them of Takni, the Castle of Jewels, but they all made answer,
“Never heard we of such a place.” At these words Janshah wept and
lamented till he swooned away; whereupon Shaykh Nasr called a huge
volatile and said to him, “Carry this youth to the land of Kabul,” and
described to him the country and the way thither. Then he set Janshah on
the bird’s back, saying, “Be careful to sit straight and beware of
leaning to either side, else thou wilt be torn to pieces in the air; and
stop thine ears from the wind, lest thou be dazed by the noise of the
revolving sphere and the roaring of the seas.” Janshah resolved to do
his bidding and the bird took flight high in sky and flew with him a day
and a night, till he set him down by the King of the Beasts, whose name
was Sháh Badrí, and said to his rider, “We have gone astray from the way
directed by Shaykh Nasr.” And he would have taken him up again and flown
on with him; but Janshah said, “Go thy ways and leave me here; till I
die on this spot or I find Takni, the Castle of Jewels, I will not
return to my country.” So the fowl left him with Shah Badri, King of the
Beasts and flew away. The King thereupon said to him, “O my son, who art
thou and whence comest thou with yonder great bird?” So Janshah told him
his story from beginning to end, whereat Shah Badri marvelled and said,
“By the virtue of the lord Solomon, I know not of this castle; but if
any one of the beasts my subjects know it, we will reward him
bountifully and send thee by him thither.” Hereat Janshah wept bitterly
but presently he took patience and abode with Shah Badri, and after a
short time the King of the Beasts said to him, “O my son, take these
tablets and commit to memory that which is therein; and when the beasts
come, we will question them of the Castle of Jewels.”——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twenty-third Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the King of
the Beasts said to Janshah, “Commit to memory what is in these tablets;
and whenas the beasts come, we will ask them anent that castle.” He did
as the King bade him, and before long, up came the beasts, kind after
kind, and saluted Shah Badri, who questioned them of Takni, the Castle
of Jewels; but they all replied, “We know not this castle, nor ever
heard we of it.” At this Janshah wept and lamented for that he had not
gone with the bird that brought him from Shaykh Nasr’s castle; but Shah
Badri said to him, “Grieve not, O my son, for I have a brother, King
Shimákh hight, who is older than I; he was once a prisoner to King
Solomon, for that he rebelled against him; nor is there among the Jinn
one elder than he and Shaykh Nasr. Belike he knoweth of this castle; at
any rate he ruleth over all the Jinn in this country side.” So saying he
set Janshah on the back of a beast and gave him a letter to his brother,
commending him to his care. The beast set off with the Prince forthwith
and fared on days and nights, till it came to King Shimakh’s abiding
place. And when it caught sight of the King it stood still afar off;
whereupon Janshah alighted and walked on, till he found himself in the
presence. Then he kissed hands and presented his brother’s letter. The
King read the missive and, having mastered the meaning, welcomed the
Prince, saying, “By Allah, O my son, in all my born days I never saw nor
heard of this castle!” adding (as Janshah burst into tears), “but tell
me thy story and who and whence thou art and whither thou art bound.” So
Janshah related to him his history from beginning to end, at which
Shimakh marvelled and said, “O my son, I do not believe that even the
lord Solomon ever saw this castle or heard thereof; but O my son,[561] I
know a monk in the mountains, who is exceeding old and whom all birds
and beasts and Jann obey; for he ceased not his conjurations against the
Kings of the Jann, till they submitted themselves to him in their own
despite, by reason of the might of his oaths and his magic; and now all
the birds and the beasts are his servants. I myself once rebelled
against King Solomon and he sent against me this monk, the only being
who could overcome me with his craft and his conjurations and his
gramarye; then he imprisoned me, and since that time I have been his
vassal. He hath travelled in all countries and quarters and knoweth all
ways and regions and places and castles and cities; nor do I think there
is any place hidden from his ken. So needs must I send thee to him,
haply he may direct thee to the Castle of Jewels; and, if he cannot do
this, none can; for all things obey him, birds and beasts and the very
mountains and come at his beck and call, by reason of his skill in
magic. Moreover, by the might of his egromancy he hath made a staff, in
three pieces, and this he planteth in the earth and conjureth over it;
whereupon flesh and blood issue from the first piece, sweet milk from
the second and wheat and barley from the third; then he withdraweth the
staff and returneth to his place which is hight the Hermitage of
Diamonds. And this magical monk is a cunning inventor and artificer of
all manner strange works; and he is a crafty warlock full of guiles and
wiles, an arch-deceiver of wondrous wickedness, who hath mastered every
kind of magic and witchcraft. His name is Yaghmús and to him I must
needs send thee on the back of a big bird with four wings”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twenty-fourth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Shimakh said to
Janshah, “I must needs send thee to the monk Yaghmus on the back of a
big bird with four wings, each measuring thirty Háshimi[562] cubits in
length; and it hath feet like those of an elephant, but it flieth only
twice a year.” And there was with King Shimakh an officer, by name
Timshún, who used every day to carry off two Bactrian[563] camels from
the land of Irak and cut them up for the bird that it might eat them. So
King Shimakh bade the fowl take up Janshah and bear him to the cell of
the hermit Yaghmus; and it rose into the air and flew on days and
nights, till it came to the Mountain of the Citadels and the Hermitage
of Diamonds; where Janshah alighted and going up to the hermitage, found
Yaghmus the Monk at his devotions. So he entered the chapel and, kissing
the ground stood respectfully before the hermit. When Yaghmus saw him,
he said, “Welcome, O my son, O parted from thy home and garred ferforth
to roam! Tell me the cause of thy coming hither.” So Janshah wept and
acquainted him with all that had befallen him from beginning to end and
that he was in quest of the Castle of Jewels. The Monk marvelled greatly
at his story and said, “By Allah, O my son, never in my life heard I of
this castle, nor ever saw I one who had heard of it or had seen it, for
all I was alive in the days of Noah, Allah’s Prophet (on whom be
peace!),[564] and I have ruled the birds and beasts and Jinn ever since
his time; nor do I believe that Solomon David-son himself knew of it.
But wait till the birds and beasts and chiefs of the Jann come to do
their homage to me and I will question them of it; peradventure, some
one of them may be able to give us news of it and Allah Almighty shall
make all things easy to thee.” So Janshah homed with the hermit, until
the day of the assembly, when all the birds and beasts and Jann came to
swear fealty; and Yaghmus and his guest questioned them anent Takni, the
Castle of Jewels; but they all replied, “We never saw or heard of such a
place.” At this, Janshah fell a-weeping and lamenting and humbled
himself before the Most High; but, as he was thus engaged, behold, there
flew down from the heights of air another bird, big of bulk and black of
blee, which had tarried behind the rest, and kissed the hermit’s hands.
Yaghmus asked it of Takni, the Castle of Jewels, and it answered,
saying, “O Monk, when I and my brothers were small chicks we abode
behind the Mountain Kaf on a hill of crystal, in the midst of a great
desert; and our father and mother used to set out for it every morning
and in the evening come back with our food. They went out early one day,
and were absent from us a se’nnight and hunger was sore upon us; but on
the eighth day they returned, both weeping, and we asked them the reason
of their absence. Quoth they:—A Marid swooped down on us and carried us
off in his claws to Takni, the Castle of Jewels, and brought us before
King Shahlán, who would have slain us; but we told him that we had left
behind us a brood of fledgelings; so he spared our lives and let us go.
And were my parents yet in the bonds of life they would give thee news
of the castle.” When Janshah heard this, he wept bitter tears and said
to the hermit, “Prithee bid the bird carry me to his father and mother’s
nest on the crystal hill, behind the Mountain Kaf.” So the hermit said,
“O bird, I desire thee to obey this youth in whatsoever he may command
thee.” “I hear and obey thy bidding,” replied the fowl; and, taking
Janshah on its back, flew with him days and nights without ceasing till
it set him down on the Hill of Crystal and there alighted. And having
delayed there a resting while, it again set him on its back and flew off
and ceased not flying for two whole days till it reached the spot where
the nest was.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.


        Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twenty-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the fowl ceased
not flying with Janshah two full days; till it reached the spot where
the nest was, and set him down there and said, “O Janshah, this is where
our nest was.” He wept sore and replied, “I pray thee bear me farther on
to where thy parents used to forage for food.” The bird consented; so it
took him up again and flew on with him seven nights and eight days, till
it set him down on the top of a high hill Karmús hight and left him
there saying, “I know of no land behind this hill.” Then it flew away
and Janshah sat down on the hill-top and fell asleep. When he awoke, he
saw a something gleaming afar off as it were lightning and filling the
firmament with its flashings; and he wondered what this sheen could be
without wotting that it was the Castle he sought. So he descended the
mountain and made towards the light, which came from Takni, the Castle
of Jewels, distant two months’ journey from Karmús, the hill whereon he
had alit and its foundations were fashioned of red rubies and its
buildings of yellow gold. Moreover, it had a thousand turrets builded of
precious metals, and stones of price studded and set in the minerals
brought from the Main of Murks, and on this account it was named the
Castle of Jewels, Takni. It was a vast great castle and the name of its
king was King Shahlan, the father of the lady Shamsah and her sisters.
Such was the case with Janshah; but as regards Princess Shamsah, when
she fled from Janshah, she made straight for the Castle of Jewels and
told her father and mother all that had passed between the Prince and
herself; how he had wandered the world and seen its marvels and wonders
and how fondly he loved her and how dearly she loved him. Quoth they,
“Thou hast not dealt righteously with him, as Allah would have thee
deal.” Moreover King Shahlan repeated the story to his guards and
officers of the Marids of the Jinn and bade them bring him every mortal
they should see. For the lady Shamsah had said to her parents, “Janshah
loveth me with passionate love and forsure he will follow me; for when
flying from his father’s roof I cried to him:—An thou love me, seek me
at Takni, the Castle of Jewels!” Now when Janshah beheld that sheen and
shine, he made straight for it wishing to find out what it might be. And
as chance would have it, Shamsah had that very day despatched a Marid on
an occasion in the direction of the hill Karmus, and on his way thither
he caught sight of a man, a mortal; so he hastened up to him and saluted
him. Janshah was terrified at his sight, but returned his salam, and the
Marid asked, “What is thy name?” and he answered, “My name is Janshah,
and I have fallen madly in love with a Jinniyah known as Princess
Shamsah, who captivated me by her beauty and loveliness; but despite my
dear love she fled from the palace wherein I placed her and behold, I am
here in quest of her.” Herewith he wept with bitter weeping. The Marid
looked at him and his heart burned with pity on hearing the sad tale,
and he said, “Weep not, for surely thou art come to thy desire. Know
that she loveth thee fondly and hath told her parents of thy love for
her, and all in yonder castle love thee for her sake; so be of good
cheer and keep thine eyes cool of tear.” Then he took him on his
shoulders and made off with him to the Castle of Jewels, Takni.
Thereupon the bearers of fair tidings hastened to report his coming and
when the news reached Shamsah and her father and mother, they all
rejoiced with exceeding joy, and King Shahlan took horse and rode out,
commanding all his guards and Ifrits and Marids honourably to meet the
Prince.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

        Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twenty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that King Shahlan
commanded all his guards and Ifrits and Marids to meet the Prince; and,
as soon as he came up with him, he dismounted and embraced him, and
Janshah kissed his hand. Then Shahlan bade put on him a robe of honour
of many-coloured silk, laced with gold and set with jewels, and a
coronet such as man never saw, and, mounting him on a splendid mare of
the steeds of the Kings of the Jinn, took horse himself and, with an
immense retinue riding on the right hand and the left, brought him in
great state to the Castle. Janshah marvelled at the splendour of this
edifice, with its walls builded of rubies and other jewels and its
pavement of crystal and jasper and emerald, and fell a-weeping at the
memory of his past miseries; but the King and Queen, Shamsah’s mother,
wiped away his tears and said, “Now no more weeping and be of good
cheer, for thou hast won to thy will.” Then Shahlan carried him into the
inner court of the Castle, where he was received by a multitude of
beautiful damsels and pages and black Jinn-slaves, who seated him in the
place of honour and stood to do him service, whilst he was lost in
amazement at the goodliness of the place, and its walls all edified of
precious metals and jewels of price. Presently King Shahlan repaired to
his hall of audience, where he sat down on his throne and, bidding the
slave-girls and the pages introduce the Prince, rose to receive him and
seated him by his side on the throne. Then he ordered the tables to be
spread and they ate and drank and washed their hands; after which in
came the Queen Shamsah’s mother, and saluting Janshah, bade him welcome
in these words, “Thou hast come to thy desire after weariness and thine
eyes shall now sleep after watching; so praised be Allah for thy
safety!” Thus saying, she went away and forthwith returned with the
Princess Shamsah, who saluted Janshah and kissed his hands, hanging her
head in shame and confusion before him and her parents; after which as
many of her sisters as were in the palace came up to him and greeted him
in like manner. Then quoth the Queen to him, “Welcome, O my son, our
daughter Shamsah hath indeed sinned against thee, but do thou pardon her
misdeed for our sakes.” When Janshah heard this, he cried out and fell
down fainting, whereat the King marvelled and they sprinkled on his face
rose-water mingled with musk and civet, till he came to himself and,
looking at Princess Shamsah, said, “Praised be Allah who hath brought me
to my desire and hath quenched the fire of my heart!” Replied she, “May
He preserve thee from the Fire!; but now tell me, O Janshah, what hath
befallen thee since our parting and how thou madest thy way to this
place; seeing that few even of the Jann ever heard of Takni, the Castle
of Jewels; and we are independent of all the Kings nor any wotteth the
road hither.” Thereupon he related to her every adventure and peril and
hardship he had suffered and how he had left his father at war with King
Kafid, ending with these words, “And all for thy sake, my lady Shamsah!”
Quoth the Queen, “Now hast thou thy heart’s desire, for the Princess is
thy handmaid, and we give her in free gift to thee.” Janshah joyed
exceedingly at these words and the Queen added, “Next month, if it be
the will of Almighty Allah, we will have a brave wedding and celebrate
the marriage festival and after the knot is tied we will send you both
back to thy native land, with an escort of a thousand Marids of our
body-guard, the least of whom, an thou bid him slay King Kafid and his
folk, would surely destroy them to the last man in the twinkling of an
eye. Furthermore if it please thee we will send thee, year after year, a
company of which each and every can so do with all thy foes.”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twenty-seventh Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the lady
Shamsah’s mother ended with saying, “And if it so please thee we will
send thee, year after year, a company of which each and every can
destroy thy foes to the last man.” Then King Shahlan sat down on his
throne and, summoning his grandees and officers of state, bade them make
ready for the marriage-festivities and decorate the city seven days and
nights. “We hear and we obey,” answered they and busied themselves two
months in the preparations, after which they celebrated the marriage of
the Prince and Princess and held a mighty festival, never was there its
like. Then they brought Janshah in to his bride and he abode with her in
all solace of life and delight for two years, at the end of which time
he said to her, “Thy father promised to send us to my native land, that
we might pass one year there and the next here.” Answered she, “I hear
and obey,” and going in to King Shahlan at nightfall told him what the
Prince had said. Quoth he, “I consent; but have patience with me till
the first of the month, that I may make ready for your departure.” She
repeated these words to her husband and they waited till the appointed
time, when the King bade his Marids bring out to them a great litter of
red gold, set with pearls and jewels and covered with a canopy of green
silk, purfled in a profusion of colours and embroidered with precious
stones, dazzling with its goodliness the eyes of every beholder. He
chose out four of his Marids to carry the litter in whichever of the
four quarters the riders might choose. Moreover, he gave his daughter
three hundred beautiful damsels to wait upon her and bestowed on Janshah
the like number of white slaves of the sons of the Jinn. Then the lady
Shamsah took formal leave of her mother and sisters and all her kith and
kin; and her father fared forth with them. So the four Marids took up
the litter, each by one corner, and rising under it like birds in air,
flew onward with it between earth and heaven till midday, when the King
bade them set it down and all alighted. Then they took leave of one
another and King Shahlan commended Shamsah to the Prince’s care, and
giving them in charge to the Marids, returned to the Castle of Jewels,
whilst the Prince and Princess remounted the litter, and the Marids
taking it up, flew on for ten whole days, in each of which they
accomplished thirty months’ journey, till they sighted the capital of
King Teghmus. Now one of them knew the land of Kabul; so when he saw the
city, he bade the others let down the litter at that populous place
which was the capital.——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twenty-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Marid-guards
let down the litter at the capital of King Teghmus who had been routed
and had fled from his foes into the city, where he was in sore straits,
King Kafid having laid close siege to him. He sought to save himself by
making peace with the King of Hind, but his enemy would give him no
quarter; so seeing himself without resource or means of relief, he
determined to strangle himself and to die and be at rest from this
trouble and misery. Accordingly he bade his Wazirs and Emirs farewell
and entered his house to take leave of his Harim; and the whole realm
was full of weeping and wailing and lamentation and woe. And whilst this
rout and hurly-burly was enacting, behold, the Marids descended with the
litter upon the palace that was in the citadel, and Janshah bade them
set it down in the midst of the Divan. They did his bidding and he
alighted with his company of handmaids and Mamelukes; and, seeing all
the folk of the city in straits and desolation and sore distress, said
to the Princess, “O love of my heart and coolth of mine eyes, look in
what a piteous plight is my sire!” Thereupon she bade the Marid-guard
fall upon the beleaguering host and slay them, saying, “Kill ye all,
even to the last man;” and Janshah commanded one of them, by name
Karátash,[565] who was exceeding strong and valiant, to bring King Kafid
to him in chains. So they set down the litter and covered it with the
canopy; then, having waited till midnight, they attacked the enemy’s
camp one of them being a match for ten; or at least for eight. And while
these smote the foes with iron maces, those mounted their magical
elephants and soared high in the lift, and then swooping down and
snatching up their opponents, tare them to pieces in mid-air. But
Karatash made straight for Kafid’s tent where he found him lying in a
couch; so he took him up, shrieking for fear, and flew with him to
Janshah, who bade the four Marids bind him on the litter and hang him
high in the air over his camp, that he might witness the slaughter of
his men. They did as the Prince commanded them and left Kafid, who had
swooned for fear, hanging between earth and air and buffetting his face
for grief. As for King Teghmus, when he saw his son, he well-nigh died
for excess of joy and, crying with a loud cry, fell down in a swoon.
They sprinkled rose-water on his face, till he came to himself, when he
and his son embraced and wept with sore weeping; for he knew not that
the Jinn-guard were battling with King Kafid’s men. Then Princess
Shamsah accosted the King and kissing his hand, said to him, “Sire, be
pleased to go up with me to the palace-roof and witness the slaughter of
thy foes by my father’s Marids.” So he went up to the terrace-roof and
sitting down there with his daughter-in-law, enjoyed watching the Marids
do havoc among the besiegers and break a way through the length and
breadth of them. For one of them smote with his iron mace upon the
elephants and their riders and pounded them till man was not to be
distinguished from beast; whilst another shouted in the faces of those
who fled, so that they fell down dead; and the third caught up a score
of horsemen, beasts and all; and, towering with them high in air, cast
them down on earth, so that they were torn in pieces. And this was high
enjoyment for Janshah and his father and the lady Shamsah.——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.


        Now when it was the Five Hundred and Twenty-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that King Teghmus and
his son and daughter-in-law went up to the terrace-roof and enjoyed a
prospect of the Jinn-guards battling with the beleaguering host. And
King Kafid (still hanging between heaven and earth) also saw the
slaughter of his troops and wept sore and buffetted his face; nor did
the carnage cease among the army of Hind for two whole days, till they
were cut off even to the last man. Then Janshah commanded a Marid, by
name Shimwál, chain up King Kafid with manacles and fetters, and
imprison him in a tower called the Black Bulwark. And when his bidding
was done, King Teghmus bade beat the drums and despatched messengers to
announce the glad news to Janshah’s mother, informing her of his
approach; whereupon she mounted in great joy and she no sooner espied
her son than she clasped him in her arms and swooned away for stress of
gladness. They sprinkled rose-water on her face, till she came to
herself, when she embraced him again and again wept for excess of joy.
And when the lady Shamsah knew of her coming, she came to her and
saluted her; and they embraced each other and after remaining embraced
for an hour sat down to converse. Then King Teghmus threw open the
city-gates and despatched couriers to all parts of the kingdom, to
spread the tidings of his happy deliverance; whereupon all his princely
Vassals and Emirs and the Grandees of the realm flocked to salute him
and give him joy of his victory and of the safe return of his son; and
they brought him great store of rich offerings and curious presents. The
visits and oblations continued for some time, after which the King made
a second and a more splendid bride-feast for the Princess Shamsah and
bade decorate the city and held high festival. Lastly they unveiled and
paraded the bride before Janshah, with apparel and ornaments of the
utmost magnificence, and when her bridegroom went in to her he presented
her with an hundred beautiful slave-girls to wait upon her. Some days
after this, the Princess repaired to the King and interceded with him
for Kafid, saying, “Suffer him return to his own land, and if
henceforward he be minded to do thee a hurt, I will bid one of the
Jinn-guard snatch him up and bring him to thee.” Replied Teghmus, “I
hear and I obey,” and bade Shimwal bring him the prisoner, who came
manacled and fettered and kissed earth between his hands. Then he
commanded to strike off his chains and, mounting him on a lame mare,
said to him, “Verily Princess Shamsah hath interceded for thee: so
begone to thy kingdom, but if thou fall again to thine old tricks, she
will send one of the Marids to seize thee and bring thee hither.”
Thereupon King Kafid set off homewards, in the sorriest of plights,——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

         Now when it was the Five Hundred and Thirtieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that King Kafid set off
homewards in the sorriest of plights, whilst Janshah and his wife abode
in all solace and delight of life, making the most of its joyance and
happiness. All this recounted the youth sitting between the tombs unto
Bulukiya, ending with, “And behold, I am Janshah who witnessed all these
things, O my brother, O Bulukiya!” Then Bulukiya who was wandering the
world in his love for Mohammed (whom Allah bless and keep!) asked
Janshah, “O my brother, what be these two sepulchres and why sittest
thou between them and what causeth thy weeping?” He answered, “Know, O
Bulukiya, that we abode in all solace and delight of life, passing one
year at home and the next at Takni, the Castle of Jewels, whither we
betook not ourselves but in the litter borne by the Marids and flying
between heaven and earth.” Quoth Bulukiya, “O my brother, O Janshah,
what was the distance between the Castle and thy home?” Quoth he, “Every
day we accomplished a journey of thirty months and the time we took was
ten days. We abode on this wise a many of years till, one year we set
out for the Castle of Jewels, as was our wont, and on the way thither
alighted from the litter in this island to rest and take our pleasure
therein. We sat down on the river-bank and ate and drank; after which
the Lady Shamsah, having a mind to bathe, put off her clothes and
plunged into the water. Her women did likewise and they swam about
awhile, whilst I walked on along the bank of the stream leaving them to
swim about and play with one another. And behold, a huge shark of the
monsters of the deep seized the Princess by the leg, without touching
any of the girls; and she cried out and died forthright, whilst the
damsels fled out of the river to the pavilion, to escape from the shark.
But after awhile they returned and taking up her corpse carried her to
the litter. Now when I saw her dead, I fell down fainting and they
sprinkled water on my face, till I recovered and wept over her. Then I
despatched the Jinn-guards to her parents and family, announcing what
had befallen her; and in the shortest time they came to the spot and
washed her and shrouded her; after which they buried her by the
river-side and made mourning for her. They would have carried me with
them to their own country; but I said to King Shahlan, “I beseech thee
to dig me a grave beside her tomb, that, when I die, I may be buried by
her side in that grave.” Accordingly, the King commanded one of his
Marids to do as I wished, after which they departed and left me here to
weep and mourn for her till I die. And this is my story and the cause of
my sojourn between these two tombs.” And he repeated these two

 “The house, sweet heart, is now no home to me ✿ Since thou art gone, nor
    neighbour neighbourly.
 The friend whilome I took to heart, no more ✿ Is friend, and brightest
    lights lose brilliancy.”

But when Bulukiya heard out Janshah’s tale he marvelled——And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Five Hundred and Thirty-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Bulukiya
heard out Janshah’s tale he wondered and exclaimed, “By Allah, methought
I had indeed wandered over the world and compassed it about; but now I
forget all I have seen after listening to these adventures of thine!” He
was silent a while and then resumed, “I beg thee, of thy favour and
courtesy, to direct me in the way of safety.” So Janshah directed him
into the right road, and Bulukiya farewelled him and went his ways. All
this the Serpent-queen related to Hasib Karim al-Din, and he asked her,
“But how knowest thou of these things?”; and she answered, “O Hasib,
thou must ken that I had occasion, some five-and-twenty years ago, to
send one of my largest serpents to Egypt and gave her a letter for
Bulukiya, saluting him.” So she went there willingly for she had a
daughter in the land called Bint Shumukh[567]; and after asking anent
Bulukiya she found him and gave him my missive. He read it and replied
to the messenger snake, “Thou comest from the Queen of the Serpents whom
I am minded to visit for I have an occasion to her.” She replied, “I
hear and obey.” Then she bore him to her daughter of whom she took leave
and said to her companion, “Close thine eyes.” So he closed them and
opening them again, behold, he found himself on the mountain where I now
am. Then his guide carried him to a great serpent, whom he saluted;
whereupon quoth she, “Didst thou deliver the missive to Bulukiya?”; and
she replied, “Even so; and he hath accompanied me and here he standeth.”
Presently Bulukiya asked after me, the Serpent-queen, and the great
serpent answered, “She hath gone to the mountain Kaf with all her host,
as is her wont in winter; but next summer she will come hither again. As
often as she goeth thither, she appointeth me to reign in her room,
during her absence; and if thou have any occasion to her, I will
accomplish it for thee.” Said he, “I beg thee to bring me the herb,
which whoso crusheth and drinketh the juice thereof, sickeneth not
neither groweth grey nor dieth.” “I will not bring it,” said the
serpent, “till thou tell me what befel thee since thou leftest the Queen
of the Serpents, to go with Affan in quest of King Solomon’s tomb.” So
he related to her all his travels and adventures, together with the
history of Janshah, and said at last, “Grant me my request, that I may
return to mine own country.” Replied the serpent, “By the virtue of the
lord Solomon, I know not where is to be found the herb whereof thou
speakest.” Then she bade the serpent which had brought him thither,
carry him back to Egypt: so the messenger obeyed her and said to him,
“Shut thine eyes!” He did so and, opening them again, found himself on
the mountain Mukattam.[568] “When I returned from the mountain Kaf”
(added the Queen) “the serpent, my deputy, informed me of Bulukiya’s
visit and gave me his salutations and repeated to me his story and his
meeting with Janshah. And this, O Hasib, is how I came to know the
adventures of Bulukiya and the history of Janshah.” Thereupon Hasib said
to her, “O Queen, deign recount to me what befel Bulukiya as regards his
return to Egypt.” She replied, “Know, O Hasib, that when he parted from
Janshah he fared on nights and days till he came to a great sea; so he
anointed his feet with the juice of the magical herb and, walking over
the face of the waters, sped onwards till he came to an island abounding
in trees and springs and fruits, as it were the Garden of Eden. He
landed and walked about, till he saw an immense tree, with leaves as big
as the sails of a ship. So he went up to the tree and found under it a
table spread with all manner meats, whilst on a branch of the branches
sat a great bird, whose body was of pearls and leek-green emeralds, its
feet of silver, its beak of red carnelian and its plumery of precious
metals; and it was engaged in singing the praises of Allah the Most High
and blessing Mohammed (on whom be benediction and peace!)”——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Five Hundred and Thirty-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Bulukiya
landed and walked about the island he found therein many marvels,
especially a bird whose body was of pearls and leek-green emeralds and
its plumery of precious metals; and it was engaged in singing the
praises of Allah the Most High and blessing Mohammed (upon whom be
benediction and peace!). Seeing this he said, “Who and what art thou?”
Quoth the bird, “I am one of the birds of Eden and followed Adam when
Allah Almighty cast him out thence. And know, O my brother, that Allah
also cast out with him four leaves of the trees of the garden, to cover
his nakedness withal, and they fell to the ground after awhile. One of
them was eaten by a worm, and of it came silk: the gazelles ate the
second and thence proceeded musk; the third was eaten by bees and gave
rise to honey, whilst the fourth fell in the land of Hind and from it
sprang all manner of spices. As for me, I wandered over the face of
earth till Allah deigned give me this island for a dwelling-place, and I
took up my abode here. And every Friday from night till morning the
Saints and Princes[569] of the Faith flock to this place and make pious
visitation and eat from this table spread by Allah Almighty; and after
they have eaten, the table is taken up again to Heaven: nor doth the
food ever waste or corrupt.” So Bulukiya ate his fill of the meats and
praised the Great Creator. And presently, behold, there came up
Al-Khizr[570] (with whom be peace!), at sight of whom Bulukiya rose and
saluting him, was about to withdraw, when the bird said to him, “Sit, O
Bulukiya, in the presence of Al-Khizr, on whom be peace!” So he sat down
again, and Al-Khizr said to him, “Let me know who thou art and tell me
thy tale.” Thereupon Bulukiya related to him all his adventures from
beginning to end and asked, “O my lord, how far is it hence to Cairo?”
“Five-and-ninety years’ journey,” replied the Prophet; whereupon
Bulukiya burst into tears; then, falling at Al-Khizr’s feet, kissed them
and said to him, “I beseech thee deliver me from this strangerhood and
thy reward be with Allah, for that I am nigh upon death and know not
what to do.” Quoth Al-Khizr, “Pray to Allah Almighty that He permit me
to carry thee to Cairo, ere thou perish.” So Bulukiya wept and humbled
himself before Allah who granted his prayer, and by inspiration bade
Al-Khizr bear him to his people. Then said the Prophet, “Lift thy head,
for Allah hath heard thy prayer and hath inspired me to do what thou
desirest; so take fast hold of me with both thy hands and shut thine
eyes.” The Prince did as he was bidden and Al-Khizr stepped a single
step forwards, then said to him, “Open thine eyes!” So Bulukiya opened
his eyes and found himself at the door of his palace at Cairo. He
turned, to take leave of Al-Khizr, but found no trace of him——And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Five Hundred and Thirty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Bulukiya,
standing at the gate of his palace, turned to take leave of Al-Khizr, he
found no trace of him and entered the palace. When his mother saw him,
she cried with a loud cry and swooned away for excess of joy, and they
sprinkled water upon her face. After awhile she came to herself and
embraced her son and wept with sore weeping, whilst Bulukiya wept and
laughed by turns. Then all his friends and kindred came and gave him joy
of his safe return, and the news was noised abroad in the land and there
came to him presents from all parts. Moreover, they beat the drums and
blew the flutes and rejoiced mightily. Then Bulukiya related to them his
adventures ending with recounting how Al-Khizr had set him down at his
palace-door, whereat they marvelled exceedingly and wept, till all were
aweary of weeping. Hasib wondered at the Queen’s tale and shed many
tears over it; then he again besought her to let him return to his
family; but she said, “I fear me, O Hasib, that when thou gettest back
to thy country thou wilt fail of thy promise and prove traitor to thine
oath and enter the Hammam.” But he swore to her another solemn oath that
he would never again enter the baths as long as he lived; whereupon she
called a serpent and bade her carry him up to the surface of the earth.
So the serpent took him and led him from place to place, till she
brought him out on the platform-edge of an abandoned cistern and there
left him. Upon this he walked to the city and, coming to his house by
the last of the day, at the yellowing of the sun, knocked at the door.
His mother opened it and seeing her son screamed out and threw herself
upon him and wept for excess of joy. His wife heard her mother-in-law
weeping; so she came out to her and seeing her husband, saluted him and
kissed his hands; and each rejoiced in other with exceeding joy of all
three. Then they entered the house and sat down to converse; and
presently Hasib asked his mother of the woodcutters, who had left him to
perish in the cistern. Quoth she, “They came and told me that a wolf had
eaten thee in the Wady. As for them, they are become merchants and own
houses and shops, and the world is grown wide for them. But every day
they bring me meat and drink, and thus have they done until the present
time.” Quoth Hasib, “To-morrow do thou go to them and say:—My son Hasib
Karim al-Din hath returned from his travels; so come ye to meet him and
salute him.” Accordingly, when morning dawned, she repaired to the
woodcutters’ houses and delivered to them her son’s message, which when
they heard, they changed colour, and saying, “We hear and obey,” gave
her each a suit of silk, embroidered with gold, adding, “Present this to
thy good son[571] and tell him that we will be with him to-morrow.” She
assented and returning to Hasib gave him their presents and message.
Meanwhile, the woodcutters called together a number of merchants and,
acquainting them with all that had passed between themselves and Hasib,
took counsel with them what they should do. Quoth the merchants, “It
behoveth each one of you to give him half his monies and Mamelukes.” And
they all agreed to do this; so on the next day, each of them took half
his wealth and, going in to Hasib, saluted him and kissed his hands.
Then they laid before him what they had brought, saying, “This is of thy
bounties, and we are in thy hands.” He accepted their peace-offering and
said, “What is past is past: that which befel us was decreed of Allah,
and destiny doeth away with dexterity.” Quoth they, “Come, let us walk
about and take our solace in the city and visit the Hammam.” Quoth he,
“Not so: I have taken an oath never again to enter the baths, so long as
I live.” Rejoined they, “At least come to our homes that we may
entertain thee.” He agreed to this, and went to their houses and each of
them entertained him for a night and a day; nor did they cease to do
thus for a whole se’nnight, being seven in number. And now Hasib was
master of monies and houses and shops, and the merchants of the city
foregathered with him and he told them all that had befallen him. He
became one of the chiefs of the guild and abode on this wise awhile,
till it happened one day, as he was walking about the streets, that he
passed the door of a Hammam, whose keeper was one of his companions.
When the bathman, who was standing without, caught his eye he ran up to
him and saluted him and embraced him, saying, “Favour me by entering the
bath and there wash and be rubbed that I may show thee hospitality.”
Hasib refused, alleging that he had taken a solemn oath never again to
enter the Hammam; but the bathman was instant with him, saying, “Be my
three wives triply divorced, an thou enter not and be washed!” When
Hasib heard him thus conjure him, he was confounded and replied, “O my
brother, hast thou a mind to ruin my house and make my children orphans
and lay a load of sin upon my neck?” But his friend threw himself at his
feet and kissed them, saying, “My happiness dependeth upon thy entering,
and be the sin on the neck of me!” Then all the servants of the bath set
upon Hasib and dragging him in pulled off his clothes. But hardly had he
sat down against the wall and begun to pour water on his head when a
score of men accosted him, saying, “Rise, O man, and come with us to the
Sultan, for thou art his debtor.” Then they despatched one of them as
messenger to the Sultan’s Minister, who straightway took horse and rode,
attended by threescore Mamelukes, to the baths, where he alighted and
going in to Hasib, saluted him and said, “Welcome to thee!” Then he gave
the bathman an hundred dinars and, mounting Hasib on a horse he had
brought with him, returned with him and all his men to the Sultan’s
palace. Here he bade them aid Hasib to dismount and, after seating him
comfortably, set food before him; and when they had eaten and drunken
and washed their hands, the Wazir clad him in two dresses of honour each
worth five thousand dinars and said to him, “Know that Allah hath been
merciful to us in sending thee; for the Sultan is nigh upon death by
leprosy, and the books tell us that his life is in thy hands.” Then,
accompanied by a host of Grandees, he took him wondering withal and
carried him through the seven doorways of the palace, till they came to
the King’s chamber. Now the name of this King was Karazdán, King of
Persia and of the Seven Countries, and under his sway were an hundred
sovereign princes sitting on chairs of red gold, and ten thousand
valiant captains, under each one’s hand an hundred deputies and as many
headsmen armed with sword and axe. They found the King lying on his bed
with his face swathed in a napkin, and groaning for excess of pain. When
Hasib saw this ordinance, his wit was dazed for awe of the King; so he
kissed the ground before him, and prayed a blessing on him. Then the
Grand Wazir, whose name was Shamhúr, rose and welcoming Hasib, seated
him on a high chair at the King’s right hand;——And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

       Now when it was the Five Hundred and Thirty-fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Wazir Shamhur
rose to Hasib and seated him on a chair at the right hand of King
Karazdan; after which he called for food and the tables were laid. And
when they had eaten and drunken and washed their hands, Shamhur stood up
(while all present also stood to do him honour) and, approaching Hasib
said to him, “We are all thy servants and will give thee whatsoever thou
askest, even were it one half the kingdom, so thou wilt but cure the
King.” Saying this, he led him by the hand to the royal couch, and
Hasib, uncovering the King’s face, saw that he was at last fatal stage
of the disease; so he wondered at their hoping for a cure. But the Wazir
kissed his hand and repeated his offers and ended with saying, “All we
want of thee is to heal our King:” so he said to the Wazir, “True that I
am the son of Allah’s prophet, Daniel, but I know nothing of his art:
for they put me thirty days in the school of medicine and I learnt
nothing of the craft. I would well I knew somewhat thereof and might
heal the King.” Hearing this, the Grand Wazir said, “Do not multiply
words upon us; for though we should gather together to us physicians
from the East and from the West, none could cure the King save thou.”
Answered Hasib, “How can I make him whole, seeing I know neither his
case nor its cure?” Quoth the Minister, “His healing is in thy hands,”
and quoth Hasib, “If I knew the remedy of his sickness, I would heal
him.” Thereupon the Wazir rejoined, “Thou kennest a cure right well; the
remedy of his sickness is the Queen of the Serpents, and thou knowest
her abiding-place and hast been with her.” When Hasib heard this, he
knew that all this came of his entering the Baths, and repented whenas
repentance availed him naught; then said he, “What is the Queen of the
Serpents? I know her not nor ever in all my life heard I of this name.”
Retorted the Wazir, “Deny not the knowledge of her, for I have proof
that thou knowest her and hast passed two years with her.” Repeated
Hasib, “Verily, I never saw her nor even heard of her till this moment;”
upon which Shamhur opened a book and, after making sundry calculations,
raised his head and spake as follows. “The Queen of the Serpents shall
foregather with a man who shall abide with her two years; then shall he
return from her and come forth to the surface of the earth, and when he
entereth the Hammam-bath his belly will become black.” Then said he,
“Look at thy belly.” So Hasib looked at his own belly and behold, it was
black: but he persisted in his denial and said, “My belly was black from
the day my mother bare me.” Said the Wazir, “I had stationed three
Mamelukes at the door of every Hammam, bidding them note all who entered
and let me know when they found one whose belly was black: so, when thou
enteredst, they looked at thy belly and, finding it black, sent and told
me, after we had well-nigh lost hope of coming upon thee. All we want of
thee is to show us the place whence thou camest out and after go thy
ways; for we have those with us who will take the Queen of the Serpents
and fetch her to us.” Then all the other Wazirs and Emirs and Grandees
flocked about Hasib who sorely repented of his misdeed; and they
conjured him, till they were weary, to show them the abode of the Queen;
but he ceased not saying, “I never saw nor heard of the matter.” Then
the Grand Wazir called the hangman and bade him strip Hasib and beat him
a sore beating; and so they did till he saw death face to face, for
excess of pain, and the Wazir said, “We have proof that thou knowest the
abiding-place of the Queen of the Serpents: why wilt thou persist in
denial? Show us the place whence thou camest out and go from us; we have
with us one who will take her, and no harm shall befal thee.” Then he
raised him and bade give him a dress of honour of cloth of red gold,
embroidered with jewels, and spoke him fair till Hasib yielded and said,
“I will show you the place.” At this the Wazir rejoiced with great joy
and took horse with all his many and rode, guided by Hasib, and never
drew rein till they came to the mountain containing the cavern wherein
he had found the cistern full of honey. There all dismounted and
followed him as he entered, sighing and weeping, and showed them the
well whence he had issued; whereupon the Wazir sat down thereby and,
sprinkling perfumes upon a chafing-dish, began to mutter charms and
conjurations; for he was a crafty magician and diviner and skilled in
spiritual arts. He repeated three several formulas of conjuration and
between each threw fresh incense upon the fire, crying out and saying,
“Come forth, O Queen of the Serpents!;” when behold, the water of the
well sank down and a great door opened in the side, from which came a
mighty noise of crying like unto thunder, so terrible that they thought
the well had caved in and all present fell down fainting; nay, some even
died for fright. Presently, there issued from the well a serpent as big
as an elephant, casting out sparks, like red hot coals, from its eyes
and mouth and bearing on its back a charger of red gold, set with pearls
and jewels, in the midst whereof lay a serpent from whose body issued
such splendour that the place was illumined thereby; and her face was
fair and young and she spoke with most eloquent tongue. The
Serpent-queen turned right and left, till her eyes fell upon Hasib, to
whom said she, “Where is the covenant thou madest with me, and the oath
thou swarest to me, that thou wouldst never again enter the Hammam-bath?
But there is no fighting against Fate nor hath any ever fled from that
which is written on his forehead. Allah hath appointed the end of my
life for thy hand to hend, and it is His will that slain I be and King
Karazdan be healed of his malady.” So saying, she wept with sore weeping
and Hasib wept to see her weep. As for the abominable Wazir Shamhur; he
put out his hand to lay hold of her; but she said to him, “Hold thy
hand, O accursed, or I will blow upon thee and reduce thee to a heap of
black ashes.” Then she cried out to Hasib, saying, “Draw near me and
take me in thine hand and lay me in the dish that is with you: then set
it on thy head; for my death was fore-ordained, from Eternity without
beginning,[572] to be at thy hand, and thou hast no power to avert it.”
So he took her and laid her in the dish, and put it on his head, when
the well returned to its former state. Then they set out on their return
to the city, Hasib carrying the dish on his head, and when they were
halfway behold, the Queen of the Serpents said to him privily, “Hearken,
O Hasib, to my friendly counsel, for all thou hast broken faith with me
and been false to thine oath, and hast done this misdeed, but it was
fore-ordained from all eternity.” He replied “To hear is to obey,” and
she continued, “It is this: when thou comest to the Wazir’s house, he
will bid thee behead me and cut me in three; but do thou refuse,
saying:—I know not how to slaughter[573] and leave him to do it with his
own hand and to work his wicked will. When he hath cut my throat and
divided my body into three pieces there will come a messenger, to bid
him to the King, so he will lay my flesh in a cauldron of brass and set
it upon a brasier before going to the presence and he will say to
thee:—Keep up the fire under the cauldron till the scum rise; then skim
it off and pour it into a phial to cool. Wait till it cool and then
drink it, so shall naught of malady or pain be left in all thy body.
When the second scum riseth, skim it off and pour it into a phial
against my return from the King, that I may drink it for an ailment I
have in my loins. Then will he give thee the phials and go to the King,
and when he is gone, do thou light the fire and wait till the first scum
rise and set it in a phial; keep it by thee but beware of drinking it,
or no good will befal thee. When the second scum riseth, skim it off and
put it in a second phial and drink it down as soon as it cools. When the
Wazir returneth and asketh thee for the second phial, give him the first
and note what shall befal him;”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

        Now when it was the Five Hundred and Thirty-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Serpent-queen
charged Hasib not to drink of the first scum and carefully to keep the
second, saying, “When the Wazir returneth from the King and asketh for
the second phial, give him the first and note what shall befal him; then
drink the contents of the second phial and thy heart will become the
home of wisdom. After this take up the flesh and, laying it in a brazen
platter, carry it to the King and give him to eat thereof. When he hath
eaten it and it hath settled in his stomach, veil his face with a
kerchief and wait by him till noontide, when he will have digested the
meat. Then give him somewhat of wine to drink and, by the decree of
Allah Almighty, he will be healed of his unhealth and be made whole as
he was. And give thou ear to the charge wherewith I charge thee; and
keep it in thy memory with carefullest keeping.” They ceased not faring
till they came to the Wazir’s house, and he said to Hasib, “Come in with
me!” So he went in and the troops dispersed and fared each his own way;
whereupon Hasib set down the platter and the Wazir bade him slay the
Queen of the Serpents; but he said, “I know not how to slaughter and
never in my born days killed I aught. An thou wilt have her throat cut,
do it with thine own hand.” So the Minister Shamhur took the Queen from
the platter and slew her, seeing which Hasib wept bitter tears and the
Wazir[574] laughed at him, saying, “O weak of wits, how canst thou weep
for the killing of a worm?” Then he cut her in three and, laying the
pieces in a brass cauldron, set it on the fire and sat down to await the
cooking of the flesh. And whilst he was sitting, lo! there came a slave
from the King, who said to him, “The King calls for thee without stay or
delay;” and he answered saying, “I hear and I obey.” So he gave Hasib
two phials and bade him drink the first scum and keep the second against
his return, even as the Queen of the Serpents had foretold; after which
he went away with repeated charges and injunctions; and Hasib tended the
fire under the cauldron till the first scum rose, when he skimmed it off
and, setting it in one of the phials, kept it by him. He then fed the
fire till the second scum rose; then he skimmed it off and, putting it
in the other phial, kept it for himself. And when the meat was done, he
took the cauldron off the fire and sat awaiting the Wazir who asked him
on return, “What hast thou done?;” and answered Hasib, “I did thy
bidding to the last word.” Quoth the Wazir, “What hast thou done with
the first phial?” “I drank its contents but now,” replied Hasib, and
Shamhur asked, “Thy body feeleth it no change?”; whereto Hasib answered,
“Verily, I feel as I were on fire from front to foot.” The villain Wazir
made no reply hiding the truth but said, “Hand me the second phial, that
I may drink what is therein, so haply I may be made whole of this ailing
in my loins.” So Hasib brought him the first phial and he drank it off,
thinking it contained the second scum; but hardly had he done drinking
when the phial fell from his hand and he swelled up and dropped down
dead; and thus was exemplified in him the saying; “Whoso for his brother
diggeth a pit, he shall be the first to fall into it.” Now when Hasib
saw this, he wondered and feared to drink of the second phial; but he
remembered the Serpent-queen’s injunction and bethought him that the
Wazir would not have reserved the second scum for himself, had there
been aught of hurt therein. So he said, “I put my trust in Allah,”[575]
and drank off the contents of the phial. No sooner had he done so, than
the Most Highest made the waters of wisdom to well up in his heart and
opened to him the fountains of knowledge, and joy and gladness overcame
him. Then he took the serpent’s flesh from the cauldron and, laying it
on a platter of brass, went forth from the Wazir’s house. On his way to
the palace he raised his eyes and saw the seven Heavens and all that
therein is, even to the Lote-tree, beyond which there is no
passing,[576] and the manner of the revolution of the spheres. Moreover,
Allah discovered to him the ordinance of the planets and the scheme of
their movements and the fixed stars; and he saw the contour of the land
and sea, whereby he became informed with geometry, astrology and
astronomy and mathematics and all that hangeth thereby; and he
understood the causes and consequences of eclipses of the sun and moon.
Then he looked at the earth and saw all minerals and vegetables that are
therein and thereon; and he learned their properties, and their virtues,
so that he became in an instant versed in medicine and chemistry and
natural magic and the art of making gold and silver. And he ceased not
carrying the flesh till he came to the palace, when he went in to King
Karazdan, and kissing the ground before him, said, “May thy head survive
thy Wazir Shamhur!” The King was mightily angered at the news of the
Grand Wazir’s death and wept for him, whilst his Emirs and his Grandees
and officers also wept. Then said Karazdan, “He was with me but now, in
all health, and went away to fetch me the flesh of the Queen of the
Serpents, if it should be cooked; what befel him that he is now dead,
and what accident hath betided him?” So Hasib told him the whole truth
how the Minister had drunk the contents of the phial and had forthwith
swelled out and died. The King mourned for his loss with mourning sore
and said to Hasib, “What shall I do without Shamhur?” and Hasib answered
“Grieve not, O King of the age; for I will cure thee within three days
and leave no whit of disease in thy body.” At this the King’s breast
waxed broad and he said, “I wish to be made whole of this affliction,
though after a long term of years.” So Hasib set the platter before the
King and made him eat a slice of the flesh of the Serpent-queen. Then he
covered him up and, spreading a kerchief over his face, bade him sleep
and sat down by his side. He slept from noonday till sundown, while his
stomach digested the piece of flesh, and presently he awoke. Hasib gave
him somewhat of wine to drink and bade him sleep again; so he slept till
the morning and when dawn appeared, Hasib repeated the treatment making
him eat another piece of the flesh; and thus he did with him three days
following, till he had eaten the whole, when his skin began to shrink
and scale off and he perspired, so that the sweat ran down from his head
to his heels. Therewith he became whole and there abode in him no trace
of the disease, which when Hasib saw, he said, “There is no help for it
but thou go to the Hammam.” So he carried him to the bath and washed his
body; and when he came forth, it was like a wand of silver and he was
restored to health, nay, sounder than he was before he fell ill.
Thereupon he donned his richest robes and, seating himself on his
throne, deigned make Hasib sit beside him. Then he bade the tables be
spread and they ate and washed their hands; after which he called for
the service of wine and both drank their fill. Upon this all his Wazirs
and Emirs and Captains and the Grandees of his realm and the notables of
the lieges came in to him and gave him joy of his recovery; and they
beat the drums and adorned the city in token of rejoicing. Then said the
King to the assembly, “O Wazirs and Emirs and Grandees, this is Hasib
Karim al-Din, who hath healed me of my sickness, and know all here
present that I make him my Chief Wazir in the stead of the Wazir
Shamhur.”——And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

        Now when it was the Five Hundred and Thirty-sixth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that quoth King
Karazdan to his Ministers and high lords, “He who healed me of my
sickness is none other than Hasib Karim al-Din here present. Therefore I
make him my Chief Wazir in the stead of the Wazir Shamhur; and whoso
loveth him loveth me, and whoso honoureth him honoureth me, and he who
obeyeth him obeyeth me.” “Hearkening and obedience,” answered they and
all rising flocked to kiss Hasib’s hand and salute him and give him joy
of the Wazirate. Then the King bestowed on him a splendid dress of gold
brocade, set with pearls and gems, the least of which was worth five
thousand gold pieces. Moreover, he presented to him three hundred male
white slaves and the like number of concubines, in loveliness like
moons, and three hundred Abyssinian[577] slave-girls, beside five
hundred mules laden with treasure and sheep and oxen and buffaloes and
bulls and other cattle beyond count; and he commanded all his Wazirs and
Emirs and Grandees and Notables and Mamelukes and his subjects in
general to bring him gifts. Presently Hasib took horse and rode,
followed by the Wazirs and Emirs and lords and all the troops, to the
house which the King had set apart for him, where he sat down on a
chair; and the Wazirs and Emirs came up to him and kissed hands and gave
him joy of his Ministership, vying with one another in suit and service.
When his mother and his household knew what had happened, they rejoiced
with exceeding joy and congratulated him on his good fortune; and his
quondam comrades the woodcutters also came and gave him joy. Then he
mounted again and, riding to the house of the late Wazir Shamhur, laid
hands on all that was therein and transported it to his own abode. On
this wise did Hasib, from a dunsical know-nothing, unskilled to read
writing, become, by the decree of Allah Almighty, an adept in every
science and versed in all manner of knowledge, so that the fame of his
learning was blazed abroad over the land and he became renowned as an
ocean of lore and skill in medicine and astronomy and geometry and
astrology and alchemy and natural magic and the Cabbala and Spiritualism
and all other arts and sciences. One day, he said to his mother, “My
father Daniel was exceeding wise and learned; tell me what he left by
way of books or what not!” So his mother brought him the chest and,
taking out the five leaves which had been saved when the library was
lost, gave them to him saying, “These five scrolls are all thy father
left thee.” So he read them and said to her, “O my mother, these leaves
are part of a book: where is the rest?” Quoth she, “Thy father made a
voyage taking with him all his library and, when he was shipwrecked,
every book was lost save only these five leaves. And when he was
returned to me by Almighty Allah he found me with child and said to
me:—Haply thou wilt bear a boy; so take these scrolls and keep them by
thee and whenas thy son shall grow up and ask what his father left him,
give these leaves to him and say, Thy father left these as thine only
heritance. And lo! here they are.” And Hasib, now the most learned of
his age, abode in all pleasure and solace and delight of life, till
there came to him the Destroyer of delights and the Severer of
societies.[578] And yet, O King, is not this tale of Bulukiya and
Janshah more wondrous than the adventures of


Footnote 507:

  This long story, containing sundry episodes and occupying fifty-three
  Nights, is wholly omitted by Lane (ii. 643) because “it is a compound
  of the most extravagant absurdities.” He should have enabled his
  readers to form their own judgment.

Footnote 508:

  Called Jamasp (brother and minister of the ancient Persian King
  Gushtasp) in the translations of Trebutien and others from Von Hammer.

Footnote 509:

  The usual term of lactation in the East, prolonged to two years and
  a-half, which is considered the rule laid down by the Shara’ or
  precepts of the Prophet. But it is not unusual to see children of
  three and even four years hanging to their mothers’ breasts. During
  this period the mother does not cohabit with her husband; the
  separation beginning with her pregnancy. Such is the habit, not only
  of the “lower animals,” but of all ancient peoples, the Egyptians
  (from whom the Hebrews borrowed it), the Assyrians and the Chinese. I
  have discussed its bearing upon pregnancy in my “City of the Saints”:
  the Mormons insist upon this law of purity being observed; and the
  beauty, strength and good health of the younger generation are proofs
  of their wisdom.

Footnote 510:

  Thus distinguishing it from “Asal-kasab,” cane honey or sugar. See
  vol. i., 271.

Footnote 511:

  The student of Hinduism will remember the Nága-Kings and Queens
  (Melusines and Echidnæ) who guard the earth-treasures in Naga-land.
  The first appearance of the snake in literature is in Egyptian
  hieroglyphs, where he forms the letters f and t, and acts as a
  determinative in the shape of a Cobra di Capello (Coluber Naja) with
  expanded hood.

Footnote 512:

  In token that he was safe.

Footnote 513:

  “Akhir al-Zamán.” As old men praise past times, so prophets prefer to
  represent themselves as the last. The early Christians caused much
  scandal amongst the orderly law-loving Romans by their wild and
  mistaken predictions of the end of the world being at hand. The
  catastrophe is a fact for each man under the form of death; but the
  world has endured for untold ages and there is no apparent cause why
  it should not endure as many more. The “latter days,” as the religious
  dicta of most “revelations” assure us, will be richer in sinners than
  in sanctity: hence “End of Time” is a facetious Arab title for a
  villain of superior quality. My Somali escort applied it to one thus
  distinguished: in 1875, I heard at Aden that he ended life by the
  spear as we had all predicted.

Footnote 514:

  Jahannam and the other six Hells are personified as feminine; and
  (woman-like) they are somewhat addicted to prolix speechification.

Footnote 515:

  These puerile exaggerations are fondly intended to act as nurses
  frighten naughty children.

Footnote 516:

  Alluding to an oft-quoted saying “Lau lá-ka, etc. Without thee (O
  Mohammed) We (Allah) had not created the spheres,” which may have been
  suggested by “Before Abraham was, I am” (John viii. 58); and by Gate
  xci. of Zoroastrianism “O Zardusht, for thy sake I have created the
  world” (Dabistan i. 344). The sentiment is by no means “Shi’ah,” as my
  learned friend Prof. Aloys Springer supposes. In his Mohammed (p. 220)
  we find an extract from a sectarian poet, “For thee we dispread the
  earth; for thee we caused the waters to flow; for thee we vaulted the
  heavens.” As Baron Alfred von Kremer, another learned and experienced
  Orientalist, reminds me the “Shi’ahs” have always shown a decided
  tendency to this kind of apotheosis and have deified or quasi-deified
  Ali and the Imams. But the formula is first found in the highly
  orthodox Burdah-poem of Al-Busiri:—

  “But for him (Lau lá-hu) the world had never come out of nothingness.”

  Hence it has been widely diffused. See Les Aventures de Kamrup (pp.
  146–7) and Les Œuvres de Wali (pp. 51–52), by M. Garcin de Tassy and
  the Dabistan (vol. i. pp. 2–3).

Footnote 517:

  Arab. “Símiyá” from the Pers., a word apparently built on the model of
  “Kímiyá” = alchemy, and applied, I have said, to fascination, minor
  miracles and white magic generally like the Hindu “Indrajal.” The
  common term for Alchemy is Ilm al-Káf (the K-science) because it is
  not safe to speak of it openly as alchemy.

Footnote 518:

  Mare Tenebrarum = Sea of Darknesses; usually applied to the “mournful
  and misty Atlantic.”

Footnote 519:

  Some Moslems hold that Solomon and David were buried in Jerusalem;
  others on the shore of Lake Tiberias. Mohammed, according to the
  history of Al-Tabari (p. 56, vol. i. Duleux’s “Chronique de Tabari”)
  declares that the Jinni bore Solomon’s corpse to a palace hewn in the
  rock upon an island surrounded by a branch of the “Great Sea” and set
  him on a throne, with his ring still on his finger, under a guard of
  twelve Jinns. “None hath looked upon the tomb save only two, Affan who
  took Bulukiya as his companion: with extreme pains they arrived at the
  spot, and Affan was about to carry off the ring when a thunderbolt
  consumed him. So Bulukiya returned.”

Footnote 520:

  Koran xxxviii. 34; or, “art the liberal giver.”

Footnote 521:

  _i.e._ of the last trumpet blown by the Archangel Israfil: an idea
  borrowed from the Christians. Hence the title of certain churches—_ad

Footnote 522:

  This may mean that the fruits were fresh and dried like dates or
  tamarinds (a notable wonder), or soft and hard of skin like grapes and

Footnote 523:

  Arab. “Al-Iksír” meaning lit. an essence; also the philosopher’s

Footnote 524:

  Name of the Jinni whom Solomon imprisoned in Lake Tiberias (See vol.
  i, 41).

Footnote 525:

  Vulgarly pronounced “Jahannum.” The second hell is usually assigned to
  Christians. As there are seven Heavens (the planetary orbits) so, to
  satisfy Moslem love of symmetry, there must be as many earths and
  hells under the earth. The Egyptians invented these grim abodes, and
  the marvellous Persian fancy worked them into poem.

Footnote 526:

  Arab. “Yájúj and Majuj,” first named in Gen. x. 2, which gives the
  ethnology of Asia Minor, circ. B.C. 800. “Gomer” is the Gimri or
  Cymmerians, “Magog” the original Magi, a division of the Medes;
  “Javan” the Ionian Greeks; “Meshesh” the Moschi; and “Tiras” the
  Turusha, or primitive Cymmerians. In subsequent times, “Magog” was
  applied to the Scythians, and modern Moslems determine from the Koran
  (chapt. xviii. and xxi.) that Yajuj and Majuj are the Russians, whom
  they call Moska or Moskoff from the Moskwa River.

Footnote 527:

  I attempt to preserve the original pun; “Mukarrabin” (those near
  Allah) being the Cherubim, and the Creator causing Iblis to draw near
  Him (karraba).

Footnote 528:

  A vulgar version of the Koran (chapt. vii.), which seems to have
  borrowed from the Gospel of Barnabas. Hence Adam becomes a manner of

Footnote 529:

  These wild fables are caricatures of Rabbinical legends which began
  with “Lilith,” the Spirit-wife of Adam: Nature and her counterpart,
  Physis and Antiphysis, supply a solid basis for folk-lore. Amongst the
  Hindus we have Brahma (the Creator) and Viswakarmá, the anti-Creator:
  the former makes a horse and a bull and the latter caricatures them
  with an ass and a buffalo, and so forth.

Footnote 530:

  This is the “Lauh al-Mahfúz,” the Preserved Tablet, upon which are
  written all Allah’s decrees and the actions of mankind good (white)
  and evil (black). This is the “perspicuous Book” of the _Koran_,
  chapt. vi. 59. The idea again is Guebre.

Footnote 531:

  _i.e._ the night before Friday which in Moslem parlance would be
  Friday night.

Footnote 532:

  Again Persian “Gáw-i-Zamín” = the Bull of the Earth. “The cosmogony of
  the world,” etc., as we read in the Vicar of Wakefield.

Footnote 533:

  The Calc. Edit. ii. 614, here reads by a clerical error “bull.”

Footnote 534:

  _i.e._ lakes and rivers.

Footnote 535:

  Here some abridgement is necessary, for we have another recital of
  what has been told more than once.

Footnote 536:

  This name, “King of Life” is Persian: “Tegh” or “Tigh” means a
  scymitar and “Bahrwán,” is, I conceive, a mistake for “Bihrún,” the
  Persian name of Alexander the Great.

Footnote 537:

  Arab. “Mulákát” or meeting the guest which, I have said, is an
  essential part of Eastern ceremony; the distance from the divan, room,
  house or town being proportioned to his rank or consideration.

Footnote 538:

  Arab. “Sifr”: whistling is held by the Badawi to be the speech of
  devils; and the excellent explorer Burckhardt got a bad name by the
  ugly habit.

Footnote 539:

  The Arabs call “Shikk” (split man) and the Persians “Nímchahrah”
  (half-face) a kind of demon like a man divided longitudinally: this
  gruesome creature runs with amazing speed and is very cruel and
  dangerous. For the celebrated soothsayers Shikk and Sátih see
  Chenery’s Al-Hariri, p. 371.

Footnote 540:

  Arab. “Takht” (Persian) = a throne or a capital.

Footnote 541:

  Arab. Wady al Naml; a reminiscence of the Koranic Wady (chapt.
  xxvii.), which some place in Syria and others in Táif.

Footnote 542:

  This is the old, old fable of the River Sabbation which Pliny (xxxi.
  18) reports as “drying up every Sabbath-day” (Saturday): and which
  Josephus reports as breaking the Sabbath by flowing only on the Day of

Footnote 543:

  They were keeping the Sabbath. When lodging with my Israelite friends
  Tiberias and Safet, I made a point of never speaking to them (after
  the morning salutation) till the Saturday was over.

Footnote 544:

  Arab. “La’al” and “Yákút,” the latter also applied to the garnet and
  to a variety of inferior stones. The ruby is supposed by Moslems to be
  a common mineral thoroughly “cooked” by the sun, and produced only on
  the summits of mountains inaccessible even to Alpinists. The idea may
  have originated from exaggerated legends of the Badakhshán country
  (supposed to be the home of the ruby) and its terrors of break-neck
  foot-paths, jagged peaks and horrid ravines: hence our “_balass_-ruby”
  through the Spanish corruption “Balaxe.” Epiphanius, archbishop of
  Salamis in Cyprus, who died A.D. 403, gives, in a little treatise (De
  duodecim gemmis rationalis summi sacerdotis Hebræorum Liber, opera
  Fogginii, Romæ, 1743, p. 30), a precisely similar description of the
  mode of finding jacinths in Scythia. “In a wilderness in the interior
  of Great Scythia,” he writes, “there is a valley begirt with stony
  mountains as with walls. It is inaccessible to man, and so excessively
  deep that the bottom of the valley is invisible from the top of the
  surrounding mountains. So great is the darkness that it has the effect
  of a kind of chaos. To this place certain criminals are condemned,
  whose task it is to throw down into the valley slaughtered lambs, from
  which the skin has been first taken off. The little stones adhere to
  these pieces of flesh. Thereupon the eagles, which live on the summits
  of the mountains, fly down following the scent of the flesh, and carry
  away the lambs with the stones adhering to them. They, then, who are
  condemned to this place, watch until the eagles have finished their
  meal, and run and take away the stones.” Epiphanius, who wrote this,
  is spoken of in terms of great respect by many ecclesiastical writers,
  and St. Jerome styles the treatise here quoted, “Egregium volumen,
  quod si legere volueris, plenissimam scientiam consequeris;” and,
  indeed, it is by no means improbable that it was from the account of
  Epiphanius that this story was first translated into Arabic. A similar
  account is given by Marco Polo and by Nicolò de Conti, as of a usage
  which they had heard was practised in India, and the position ascribed
  to the mountain by Conti, namely, fifteen days’ journey north of
  Vijanagar, renders it highly probable that Golconda was alluded to. He
  calls the mountain Albenigaras, and says that it was infested with
  serpents. Marco Polo also speaks of these serpents, and while his
  account agrees with that of Sindbad, inasmuch as the serpents, which
  are the prey of Sindbad’s Rukh, are devoured by the Venetian’s eagles,
  that of Conti makes the vultures and eagles fly away with the meat to
  places where they may be safe from the serpents. (Introd. p. xlii.,
  India in the Fifteenth Century, etc., R. H. Major, London, Hakluyt

Footnote 545:

  Elder Victory: “Nasr” is a favourite name with Moslems.

Footnote 546:

  These are the “Swan-maidens” of whom Europe in late years has heard
  more than enough. It appears to me that we go much too far for an
  explanation of the legend; a high-bred girl is so like a swan in many
  points that the idea readily suggests itself. And it is also aided by
  the old Egyptian (and Platonic) belief in pre-existence and by the
  Rabbinic and Buddhistic doctrine of ante-natal sin, to say nothing of
  metempsychosis (Joseph Ant. xvii. 153).

Footnote 547:

  The lines have occurred before. I quote Mr. Payne for variety.

Footnote 548:

  Arab. “Al-Khayál”: it is a synonym of “al-Tayf” and the nearest
  approach to our “ghost,” as has been explained. In poetry it is the
  figure of the beloved seen when dreaming.

Footnote 549:

  He does not kiss her mouth because he intends to marry her.

Footnote 550:

  It should be “manifest” excellence (Koran xxvii. 16).

Footnote 551:

  The phrase is Koranic used to describe Paradise, and Damascus is a
  familiar specimen of a city under which a river, the Baradah, passes,
  distributed into a multitude of canals.

Footnote 552:

  It maybe noted that rose-water is sprinkled on the faces of the
  “nobility and gentry,” common water being good enough for the
  commonalty. I have had to drink tea made in compliment with rose-water
  and did not enjoy it.

Footnote 553:

  The Valley Flowery: Zahrán is the name of a place near Al-Medinah.

Footnote 554:

  The Proud or Petulant.

Footnote 555:

  _i.e._ Lion, Son of (?).

Footnote 556:

  _i.e._ Many were slain.

Footnote 557:

  I venture to draw attention to this battle-picture which is at once
  simple and highly effective.

Footnote 558:

  Anglicè a quibble, evidently evasive.

Footnote 559:

  In text “Aná A’amil,” etc., a true Egypto-Syrian vulgarism.

Footnote 560:

  _i.e._ magical formulæ. The context is purposely left vague.

Footnote 561:

  The repetition is a condescension, a token of kindness.

Footnote 562:

  This is the common cubit of 18 inches: the modern vary from 22 to 26.

Footnote 563:

  I have noticed the two-humped Bactrian camel which the Syrians and
  Egyptians compare with an elephant. See p. 221 (the neo-Syrian) Book
  of Kalilah and Dimnah.

Footnote 564:

  The Noachian dispensation revived the Islam or true religion first
  revealed to Adam, and was itself revived and reformed by Moses.

Footnote 565:

  Probably a corruption of the Turkish “Kara Tásh” = black stone, in
  Arab. “Hájar Jahannam” (hell-stone), lava, basalt.

Footnote 566:

  A variant of lines in Night xx., vol. i., 211.

Footnote 567:

  _i.e._ Daughter of Pride: the proud.

Footnote 568:

  In the Calc. Edit. by misprint “Maktab.” Jabal Mukattam is the old
  sea-cliff where the Mediterranean once beat and upon whose North
  Western slopes Cairo is built.

Footnote 569:

  Arab. “Kutb”; lit. an axle, a pole; next a prince; a high order or
  doyen in Sainthood; especially amongst the Sufi-gnostics.

Footnote 570:

  Lit. “The Green” (Prophet), a mysterious personage confounded with
  Elijah, St. George and others. He was a Moslem, _i.e._ a true believer
  in the Islam of his day and Wazir to Kaykobad, founder of the Kayanian
  dynasty, sixth century B.C. We have before seen him as a contemporary
  of Moses. My learned friend Ch. Clermont-Ganneau traces him back, with
  a multitude of his similars (Proteus, Perseus, etc.), to the son of
  Osiris (p. 45, Horus et Saint Georges).

Footnote 571:

  Arab. “Walad,” more ceremonious than “ibn.” It is, by the by, the
  origin of our “valet” in its sense of boy or servant who is popularly
  addressed Yá walad. Hence I have seen in a French book of travels “un
  petit lavelet.”

Footnote 572:

  Arab. “Azal” = Eternity (without beginning); “Abad” = Infinity
  (eternity without end).

Footnote 573:

  The Moslem ritual for slaughtering (by cutting the throat) is not so
  strict as that of the Jews; but it requires some practice; and any
  failure in the conditions renders the meat impure, mere carrion

Footnote 574:

  The Wazir repeats all the words spoken by the Queen—but “in iteration
  there is no recreation.”

Footnote 575:

  A phrase always in the Moslem’s mouth: the slang meaning of “we put
  our trust in Allah” is “let’s cut our stick.”

Footnote 576:

  Koran liii. 14. This “Sidrat al-Muntahá” (Zizyphus lotus) stands in
  the seventh heaven on the right hand of Allah’s throne: and even the
  angels may not pass beyond it.

Footnote 577:

  Arab. “Habash”: the word means more than “Abyssinia” as it includes
  the Dankali Country and the sea-board, a fact unknown to the late Lord
  Stratford de Redcliffe when he disputed with the Porte. I ventured to
  set him right and suffered accordingly.

Footnote 578:

  Here ends vol. ii. of the Mac. Edit.

                            END OF VOLUME V.

[Illustration: والسلام]


 A’aráf (Al-) = partition-wall (chapter of the Koran), 217

 Aaron’s Rod (becomes with Moslems Moses’ Staff), 238

 A’amash (Al-), traditionist, 81

 A’araj (Al-), traditionist, _ib._

 Abdallah (a neutral name), 141

 Abdallah bin Mas’úd (traditionist), 81

 Abdallah bin Salim (traditionist), _ib._

 Abjad (Hebrew-Arabic alphabet), 229

 Ablution (difference of fashion in performing it), 112

 Abraham (the friend of God), 205

 Abrogating and abrogated (versets), 194

 Abú al-Abbás al-Mubarrad (grammarian), 138

 Abú al-Abbás al-Rakáshi (poet), 77

 Abú al-Ayná, 164

 Abu al-Husn = Father of Beauty (a fancy name), 189

 Abú Ali, _see_ Di’ibil al-Khuzá’i.

 Abu Bakr (Caliph), 235

 Abu Bakr Mohammed al-Anbári (grammarian), 141

 Abú Háris = Father of spoils (lion), 40

 Abú Horayrah (uncle of Mohammed), 81

 Abu Tammám (poet), 157

 Abú Zanád (traditionist), 81

 Abú Zarr (Companion of the Apostle), 102

 Adi bin Zayd (poet), 124

 Adil (Al-) = the Just (Caliph Omar), 103

 Adnán (Arab genealogy begins with), 100

 Adultery (etc. to be proved by four witnesses), 97

 Adulteress (none without an adulterer), 90

 Ahrám (Al-) = the Pyramids, 105

 Akabah (mountain pass near Meccah), 295

 Akásirah = sons of the royal Chosroës, 10

 Akhír al-Zamán = the latter days, 304

 Alam = way-mark, etc., 191

 Alcove (corruption of al-Kubbah), 18

 Aleppo (noted for debauchery), 64

 Ali bin Mohammed bin Abdallah bin Táhir (Governor), 163

 Ali ibn Abí Tálib, 213; 225

 Alish takish (acting woman and man alternately), 65

 Allah (desire unto), 164

 —— (corporeality of?), _ib._

 —— requite you abundantly =, 171

 —— (seeking refuge with), 200

 —— (names of), 214

 Allaho Akbar of prohibition, 196

 Alhamdolillah (pronounced to avert the evil eye), 7

 Almá = brown- (not “damask-”) lipped, 66

 Ambiguity, 44

 Amín (Al-), Caliph, 93; 152

 Amru bin Ma’di Karib (poet), 147

 Amru bin Masa’dah (Pr. N.), 145

 ‘Amúriyah = the classical Amorium, 141

 “Ana” (from Night ccclxxxi.-ccccxxiv.), 64

 Aná a’amil = I will do it (Egypto-Syrian vulgarism), 367

 Ant (chapter ix. of the Koran), 213

 Anthropophagy (allowed when it saves life), 186

 Anúshirwán = Anúshín-rawán = Sweet of Soul, 87

 ‘Ar (Al-) = shame, 138

 Arab al-Arabá = Arab of pure and genuine blood, 101

 Arab horses (breeds of), 246

 Arab-land and Ajam = all the world over, 136

 Arafat (mount where the victims are _not_ slaughtered), 295

 Arithmetic (not mastered by Moslems), 236

 Arsh = the ninth Heaven, 167

 Asháb al-Suffah, 102

 Atbák = trays, 264

 Ayishah bint Talhah (granddaughter of Abu Bakr), 79

 Ayn = eye, for helper, 60

 Ayns (verset of the 140), 217

 Azal = eternity without beginning (opposed to Abad = infinity), 390

 Azán = call to prayer, 201

 Ba’albak = Ba’al’s-city, 51

 Bactrian camel, 371

 Badal = substitute, 249

 Badawi (truth-telling and blunt in speech), 98

 Badinján = Solanum pomiferum, or S. Melongena, 4

 Bahak = white leprosy, 294

 Bahr al-Kunúz = Sea of Treasures, 37

 Bahrwán (Pr. N. for Bihrún?), 329

 Balábil, pl. of bulbul (nightingale) and ballalah (grief), 244

 Baldrick (Hamáil), 158

 Banú Ozrah (tribe renowned as lovers), 70

 Baras = white leprosy, 294

 Barmahát (seventh Coptic month), 231

 Barmúdah (eighth Coptic month), 232

 Basmalah = pronouncing the formula Bismillah, 206

 —— (commonly pronounced “Bismalah”), 213

 Bat (has seed like a man’s), 85

 —— (Arab. Khuffásh, Watwát), 226

 Baydak = pawn in chess, 243

 Bayt (Al-) = the house (cage), 269

 BE! and IT BECOMETH, 240; 286

 Beard combed by the fingers in the Wuzú, 198; 209

 Bida’ah = Innovation, 167

 Biká’a = convents (pilgrimages to), 125

 Bint Shumúkh (Pr. N. = daughter of pride), 382

 Bird (created by Jesus), 211

 —— (seen by Abu Bakr in the cave), 235

 Birds (songs and cries of), 50

 Bismilláh = in the name of Allah, 206

 Bizá’at = capital, business-concern, 81

 Blast (of the last trumpet), 310

 Brain (_fons veneris_ in man), 46

 Brasier (Kánún, Mankal), 273

 Breast-bone (Taráib), 132

 Breath (healing by the), 29

 Bridal couch (attitudinising thereon), 75

 Brotherhood (sworn in Allah Almighty), 43

 Bulbul (departed with Tommy Moore. Englished by “nightingale”), 48

 Bull (of the Earth = Gáw-i-Zamín), 324

 Caliphate (defective title to), 116

 Camel (-colts roasted whole), 135

 —— (feeding on and vindictiveness), 135

 —— (Bactrian), 371

 Carat = 1/24 of a dinar or miskal something under 5d., 277

 Chess, 243

 Circumcision (how practised), 209

 —— (female), 279

 Cities (two-mosqued for large and consequently vicious ones), 66

 Clitoris (Zambúr) and its excision, 279

 Coffee (first mention of), 169

 Coloquintida (Hanzal), 19

 Commune (Jamá’at), 205

 Covered (the, chapter of the Koran), 215

 Cow (chapter ii. of the Koran), 211

 Creation (is it and its Empire not His?), 266

 Crepitus ventris and Ethnology, 137

 Cubit (the Háshimi = 18 inches), 371

 Damon and Pythias, 104

 Dáni wa gharíb = friend and foe, 42

 Dánik = sixth part of a dirham, 112

 Dead (buried at once), 190

 Death (from love), 134

 —— (every soul shall taste of it), 166

 —— (of a good Moslem), 167

 Devil (stoned at Mina), 203, 212

 Devotees (address Allah as a lover would his beloved), 263

 Dí’ibil al-Khuzá’i (poet), 127

 Dimyat (vulg. Dumíyat) = Damietta, 171

 Dissection (practised on Simiads), 220

 Diyár-i-Bakr = maid-land, 66

 Doggrel (royal), 55

 —— (phenomenal), 288

 —— (sad), 297

 Door (behind it the door-keeper’s seat), 173

 Dreams (lovers meet in), 47

 Eatables (their exchange must be equal), 204

 Eating (how it should be done), 206

 Empire (endureth with infidelity but not with tyranny), 187

 Eunuchs (and their wives), 46

 —— (avoid allusion to their misfortune), 47

 Eve (Arab. Hawwá), 139

 Exaggerations, 306

 Eye (likened to the letter Sád, the brow to Nun), 34

 —— (Ayn, for helper), 60

 Fá’il = agent, active (Sodomite), 156

 Fakír = religious mendicant, 39

 Fakru (Al-) fakhrí = poverty is my pride (saying of Mohammed), 268

 Fál = omen, 126

 Fars = Persia, 26

 Fart (in return for chaff), 99

 —— (and Badawi “pundonor”), 137

 Fast (and its break), 201

 —— (when forbidden), 265

 Fátihah (position of the hands in reciting it), 80

 —— (recited seven times for greater solemnity), 134

 Faylasúf = philosopher, 234

 Fealty of the Steep, 295

 Fi’l-Khawáfik = among the flags, etc., 61

 Fingers and toes (separated to wash between them), 198

 “Fire (of Hell) but not shame”, 138

 Fire (handled without injury, a common conjuring trick), 271

 Fire-sticks (Zind, Zindah), 52

 Fishár = squeeze of the tomb, 111

 Fisherman (Arab contrasted with English), 51

 “Forbid not yourselves the good things which Allah hath allowed you”,

 Formication (accompanying a paralytic stroke), 251

 Fruits (fresh and dry), 314

 Garden (with rivers flowing under it, Koranic phrase), 356

 Gáw-i-Zamín = the Bull of the Earth, 324

 Genealogy (Arab, begins with Adnan), 100

 Ghatrafán (Pr. N. = proud, petulant), 361

 Ghaut = Sarídah, _q.v._, 223

 Ghazanfar ibn Kamkhíl = Lion, son of (?), 363

 Ghilmán (counterpart of the Houris), 64

 Ghimd (Ghamad) = scabbard, 158

 Ghoonj (Ghunj) = art of moving in coition, 80

 Ghusl = complete ablution, 199

 Girl (of nine plus five = in her prime), 192

 Greetings before the world, 34

 Habash = Abyssinia and something more, 395

 Habbazá! = good this!, 52

 Hádi (Al-), Caliph, 93

 Hadís = saying of the Apostle, tradition, 201

 Hajar Jahannam = hell-stone, lava, basalt, 378

 Hajj = pilgrimage, 202

 Hákim (Al-) bi-Amri llah (Caliph, not to be confounded with the
    Fatimite), 86

 Hakk (Al-) = the Truth (Allah), 284

 Halabi Shelebi = the Aleppine is a fellow fine, 64

 Hamáil = baldrick, 158

 Hamám = wood-pigeon, 49

 —— (al-Ayk) = “culver of the copse”, _ib._

 Hammám (hired for private parties), 63

 Handfuls (the two), 207

 Hands (their feel guides the physician), 220

 Hands (how held in reciting the Fátihah), 80

 —— (bitten in repentance), 191

 Hanút = tavern, booth, etc., 142

 Hanzal = coloquintida, 19

 Haríri (Al-) = the silk-man (poet), 158

 Harjáh = (a man of) any place?, 27

 Hásib Karím al-Dín (Pr. N.), 298

 Háshimí cubit = 18 inches, 371

 “Haunted” = inhabited by Jinns, 175

 Hawwá = Eve, 139

 Haykal = temple, chapel, 192

 Hazár = (the bird of) a thousand (songs), 48

 Hazramaut (the Biblical Hazarmaveth), 136

 Heart (from a, full of wrath = in spite of himself), 68

 Hindí = Indian Moslem opposed to Hindú, 1

 Hindibá = Endive, 226

 Hírah (Christian city in Mesopotamia), 124

 Hirakl (monastery of), 138

 Hishám ibn Orwah (traditionist), 81

 Hizb = section of the Koran, 217

 Honayn (scene of one of Mohammed’s battles), 66

 Honey (bees’, as distinguished from cane honey), 300

 “Honey-moon” (lasts a week), 62

 Horses (Arab breeds), 246

 Hosh = mean courts at Cairo, 170

 Hour (of Judgment), 235

 House (haunted = inhabited by Jinns), 175

 Hudúd al-Haram = bounds of the Holy Places, 148

 Humours (of Hippocrates), 218

 Hydropathic treatment of wounds held dangerous, 200

 Hypocrite (Munáfik), 207

 Iblís (Cherubim cherished by Allah), 319

 —— (cursed and expelled), 320

 Ibn Abbás (Companion), 212

 I’itikáf (Al-) = retreat, 202

 Ikálah (Al-) = cancelling, “resiliation,” 204

 Iksir (Al-) = an essence (the philosopher’s “stone”), 315

 Iláh = God, 196

 Ilm al-Káf = K-science for Alchemy, 307

 Images (of living beings forbidden), 3

 —— = statues, 223

 Impurity (ceremonial different from dirtiness), 209

 Imsák = retention (prolongatio veneris), 76

 In’ásh =raising from the bier (a “pick-me-up”), 67

 Indrajál = white magic, 307

 Innovation (Arab. Bida’ah), 167

 Intention (of prayer, Niyat), 163; 196

 Intercession (disputed doctrine), 241

 Iskandar Zú al-Karnayn = Alexander Matagrobolized, 252

 Isráfíl (blows the last trumpet), 310

 Istikhárah = praying for direction by omens, etc., 44

 Istinshák = snuffing water through the nostrils, 198

 Ja’afar bin Musá al-Hádi (Caliph), 93

 Jabal Mukattam (sea-cliff upon which Cairo is built), 383

 Jabal Núr, 215

 Jabal al-Saklá (Thaklá) = mount of the women bereft of children, 37

 Jábir bin Abdallah (disciple of Mohammed), 215

 Jahannam = Hell, 306; 318

 Jalálah = saying “Jalla Jalálu-hu” = magnified be His Majesty, 217

 Calla = gaberdine, 265

 Jamá’at = community, 205

 Jámi’ = cathedral mosque, 261

 Jámi’ayn = two cathedrals, 66

 Jamm = ocean, 93

 Jánsháh (Pr. N. = King of Life), 326

 Jarír (poet), 148

 Jauzar = Bubalus (Ariel antelope), 130

 Jawári = slave-girls, rhyming with dam’u jári = flowing tears, 160

 Jesus (bird of), 211

 —— (crucified in effigy), 238

 —— (compared with Adam), _ib._

 Jew (prefers dying on the floor, not in bed), 248

 Judgment (hour of), 235

 Juzám = black leprosy, 294

 Kadisíyah (Al-), city in Irák, 294

 Káfs (verset of the three-and-twenty), 217

 Kahwajiyah = coffee-makers, 169

 Kalamdán = pen-case, 239

 Kalla-má = it is seldom, 150

 Kanjifah = pack of cards, 243

 Kánun = brasier, 272

 Kári = Koran-reader, 216

 Karkh (Al-), quarter of Baghdad, 127

 Kárun = Korah of the Bible, 225

 Kawáid (pl. of Káid = governor), 145

 Khabál = pus flowing from the damned, 162

 Khalíl (Al-) = the friend, _i.e._ of Allah = Abraham, 205

 Khayál (Al-) = phantom, “ghost,” dream-visitor, 348

 Khaysamah (traditionist), 81

 Khawwás (Al-) = basket-maker, 283

 Khilál = toothpick (emblem of emaciation), 44

 Khizr (Al-), the Green Prophet, 384

 Khuffásh = Bat, 226

 Khunsá = hermaphrodite (also catamite), 91

 Khusrau Parwíz and Shírín, _ib._

 —— (his wealth), _ib._

 Khutnah = circumcision, 209

 Kiblah (turning towards it in mortal danger), 39

 —— (anything opposite) applied to the Ka’abah, 196

 Kiblatayn = the two Kiblahs (Meccah and Jerusalem), _ib._

 Killed = Hibernicè “kilt”, 5

 King (the, and the Virtuous Wife), 122

 Kisrà = _the_ Chosroë (applied to Anushirwan), 87

 Kiss (without moustachio = bread without salt), 165

 Kit (of the traveller in the East), 174

 Kiyák (fourth Coptic month), 231

 Kneeling (in prayer exclusively Christian), 196

 Kohl-needle in the Kohl-case = res in re, 97

 Korah (Kárún), 225

 Koran quoted (xxvi. 5, 6), 78

 —— (xxxiii. 48), 101

 —— (xxxviii. 2), 102

 —— (vii. 195), 143

 —— quoted (x. 36), 145

 —— (iv. 38, 175; ii. 282), 155

 —— (xii. 51), 159

 —— (xxvi. 165), 161

 —— (xxi. 36), 166

 —— (vii. 148), 191

 —— (iv. 160), 194

 —— (viii. 66), 203

 —— (xxxix. 67; lxxviii. 19), 207

 —— (vii. 63, 71, 83), 210

 —— (chapt. of The Cow), 211

 —— (xvi. 92; xxxix. 54; lxx. 38), _ib._

 —— (ii. 28, 107; xii. 18; xvi. 100; li. 57), 212

 —— (ix.; xxvii. 30; xcvi. 1, 2), 213

 —— (ii. 158; xvii. 110), 214

 —— (v. 4; xxx.; lxxiv. 1; xcvi.; cx. 1), 215

 —— (iv. 124; v. 89, 116), 216

 —— (vii. 154; xi. 50), 217

 —— (xvii. 39), 221

 —— (ii. 216; v. 92), 223

 —— (x. 5; xxii. 60; xxxvi. 40; lxx. 40), 228

 —— (xxxi. 34), 231

 —— (xxxvii. 5), 233

 —— (xxxvi. 37, 38), 234

 —— (xx. 57; xxii. 7), 235

 —— (lxxxi. 18), 236

 —— (iii.; vii. 110), 238

 —— (xii. 10), 239

 —— (xxxvi. 82), 240

 —— (vi. 44), 250

 —— (vii. 52), 269

 —— (xxxvi. 82), 286

 —— (v. 108), 287

 —— (xiii. 41), 290

 —— (xxxviii. 34), 310

 —— (vii.), 320

 —— (xxvii.), 337

 —— (xxvii. 16), 355

 —— (liii. 14), 393

 —— (abrogating and abrogated passages), 194

 —— (most excellent chapter of), 211

 —— (eminent and curious verses of), _ib._

 Kubbat (Al-) = alcove, 18

 Kurrat al-Ayn (Pr. N. = coolness of the eye), 145

 Kutb = axle, pole; hence prince, doyen in sainthood, 384

 La’al = ruby, 342

 La’an = curse, 250

 Labbay’ka = here I am (pronounced on sighting Meccah), 203

 Lactation (term of), 299

 —— (no cohabitation during), _ib._

 Lámi (Al-) = the l-shaped, forked (os hyoïdes), 219

 Lane quoted, 32; 33; 37; 44; 45; 64; 104; 112; 120; 121; 145; 189; 201;
    286; 298

 Lauh = tablet used as slate, 73

 —— al-Mahfúz = the Preserved Tablet (of Allah’s decrees), 322

 Lau lá-ka = but for thee, for thy sake, 306

 Leprosy (white = bahak or baras, black = juzám), 294

 Líf = fibre of palm-fronds, 45

 Lion (beguiled by flattery), 40

 Liver and spleen (held to be congealed blood), 220

 Lord for Lady = she, 60

 —— (of the East and West), 228

 Lote-tree (beyond which there is no passing), 393

 Lots = games of chance, 223

 Love (strange chances of), 71

 —— (deaths from), 134

 —— (made public, disgraces), 151

 Lovers (buried together), 71

 —— (model ones, becoming an ordinary married couple), 92

 Lúti (of the people of Lot = Sodomite), 161

 Lynch-law (the modern form of Jus talionis), 103

 Ma’abid (singer and composer), 147

 Mafa’úl = patient, passive (Catamite), 156

 Magic Horse (history of the fable), 2

 Majzúb = drawn, attracted (Sufi term for an ecstatic), 57

 Málik (traditionist), 81

 —— al-Khuzá’i (intendant of the palace), 95

 Málik bin Dínár (theologian), 261

 Malikhulíya (Al-) = melancholy, 221

 Man (advantages of, above woman), 155

 —— (one’s evidence = two women’s), _ib._

 —— (one’s portion = two women’s), _ib._

 —— (created of congealed blood), 213

 Manáf (idol), 129

 Manázil (Stations of the Moon), 228

 Marwah (ground-wave in Meccah), 203

 Matáf = place of the Tawáf, _q.v._, 203

 Matting (of Sind famous), 146

 Maysar = game of arrows, 223

 Medicine (rules and verses bearing on domestic), 222

 Metempsychosis and sharpers’ tricks, 84

 Mihrgán = Sun-fête, degraded into Michaelmas, 1

 Mikmarah (Makmarah) = cover for a brasier, extinguisher, 120

 Milk (soured), 225

 Míms (verset of the sixteen), 217

 Mina (and the stoning of the Devil), 203

 Miracle (minor, known to Spiritualism), 144

 Mirza Abdullah-i-Hichmakáni = Master Abdullah of Nowhere, 27

 Misra (twelfth Coptic month), 232

 Modesty (behind a curtain), 162

 Mohammed (mentioned in the Koran), 210

 —— al-Amín (Caliph), 93

 Monasteries (best wine made in), 65

 —— (Arab. Biká’a), 125

 —— (places of confinement for madmen), 139

 Months (of peace), 54

 —— (Coptic names of), 221; 232

 —— (Arabic names explained), 233

 Moon (simile for female beauty), 8

 —— (shall be cloven in twain), 217

 —— (its stations), 28

 Mosul (exempted from idolatrous worship), 64

 Moustachio (salt to a kiss), 165

 Muffawak = well-notched (arrow), 33

 Muharramát = unlawful things, 148

 Mukarrabín = those near Allah, 319

 Mujáwirin = lower servants, sweepers, etc., 19

 Mukrí = Koranist, 216

 Mulákát = going to meet an approaching guest, 330

 Munáfik = hypocrite, 207

 Munkar and Nakír (the questioning Angels), 111

 Murder (to be punished by the family), 103

 Mus’ab bin al-Zubayr, 79

 Musallá = place of prayer, oratory, 261

 Musk (sherbet flavoured with), 66

 Muslim bin al-Walíd (poet), 128

 Mutalammis (Al-), the poet and his fatal letter, 74

 Mutawakkil (Al-), ala ‘llah (Caliph), 153

 Mutawwif = leader in the Tawáf, _q.v._, 203

 Muunis (Pr. N. = Companion), 164

 Nafahát = breathings, benefits, 29

 Náf’i (traditionist), 204

 Nága-kings (of Hinduism), 302

 Najíb (al-taraf = son of a common Moslemah by a Sayyid, _q.v._), 259

 —— (al-tarafayn = whose parents are both of Apostolic blood), _ib._

 Names (of God), 214

 —— (= magical formulæ), 369

 Nation (its power consists in its numbers of fighting men), 255

 Nay = reed-pipe, 50

 Názih = travelled far and wide, 52

 Night (its promise spread with butter that melteth with day-rise), 77

 Nímchahrah = half-face (Pers. a kind of demon), 333

 Niyat = intention, purpose of prayer, 163

 Noachian dispensation (revived al-Islám), 372

 Nún (simile for the eyebrow), 34

 Nu’uman (Al-) bin Munzir (tyrant of Hírah), 74

 Obayd’ Allah (Pr. N.), 164

 Ocean (Jamm), 93

 —— (of darkness), 309

 Old age (graphically described), 3

 Old woman (polite equivalents for), 163

 Olemá (pl. of Álim) = the learned in the law, 183

 Omar (Caliph) entitled al-Ádil, the Just, 103

 Omen (Fál), 136

 Othmán bin Affán (Kátib al-Koran), 215

 Palsy (creeps over him), 251

 Paper (his = the whiteness of his skin), 161

 Parapets (on terrace-roofs made obligatory by Moses), 72

 Parasite (Tufayli), 130

 Payne quoted, 44; 49; 65; 112; 161; 192; 204; 346

 Pearls shaded by hair = teeth under moustachio, 157

 Persian (“I am a, but not lying now”), 26

 —— (poets mostly addressing youths), 156

 Physiologists (practise on the simiads), 220

 Physis and Antiphysis, 320

 Picnics (on the Rauzah island), 169

 Pilgrimage quoted (i. 22), 39

 —— (ii. 287), 44

 —— (iii. 218), 49

 —— (i. 16), 97

 —— (ii. 344), 100

 —— (i. 10), 112

 —— (ii. 161), 119

 —— (i. 352), 158

 —— (ii. 320), 196

 —— (i. 110), 201

 —— (iii. 193, 205, 226, 282), 203

 —— (iii. 248), 212

 —— (iii. 92), 220

 —— (ii. 322), 224

 —— (i. 362), 225

 —— (ii. 288), 236

 Plaisirs de la petite oie (practised by eunuchs), 46

 Pleasure prolonged (en pensant à sa pauvre mère, etc.), 76

 Polo (“Goff”), 32

 Poverty (Holy), 269

 Prayer (without intention, Arab. Niyat is valueless), 163

 —— (offered standing or prostrating), 196

 —— (of a sick person said as he best can), 200

 —— (intonations of the voice in), _ib._

 —— (call to, Azán), 201

 —— (is a collector of all folk), _ib._

 Preachments (to Eastern despots), 254

 Prolongatio veneris (Imsák), 76

 Prophets (named in the Korán), 210

 Providence (and Justice), 286

 Purgation (Easterns most careful during), 154

 Pyramids (Al-Ahrám), 105

 —— (containing unopened chambers?), 106

 Pyramidennarren, _ib._

 Quibbling away a truly diplomatic art, 86

 Rajab = worshipping (7th Arab month), 54

 Rákí (distilled from raisins), 65

 Ras al-Tín = Headland of Clay (not Figs), 112

 Rashaa = fawn beginning to walk, 149

 Rauzah (Al-), at Cairo, 169

 Ream (Ital. risma, Arab. riyam), 108

 Red Sea (cleaves in twelve places), 236

 Reed-pipe (Nay), 50

 Repetition (of an address in token of kindness), 370

 Ribá = usury, 201

 Riddle “surprise” (specimen of), 239

 Riyam = bales (ream), 108

 Robinson Crusoe (with a touch of Arab prayerfulness), 291

 Rose-water (for “nobility and gentry” even in tea), 357

 Ruby (La’al, Yákút), 342

 Rukh (Roc) and “Roc’s” feathers, 122

 Sabbath (kept in silence), 339

 Sabbation (River), 337

 Sád (Letter, simile for the eye), 34

 Safá (ground-wave _in_ Meccah), 203

 Sáhib (Wazirial title), 71

 Sa’íd bin Zayd (traditionist), 81

 Sa’íd bin Sálim (governor of Khorasan), 94

 Sáim al-dahr = perennial faster, 112

 Saint, Santon (Wali), _ib._

 Saint and Sinner, 115

 Saj’a = balanced prose (instance), 160

 Sajáh (false prophetess), 147

 Sakhr (Jinni imprisoned by Solomon), 316

 Sakká = water-carrier, 89

 Salaf (Al-) = ancestry (referring to Mohammed), 90

 Sálih (grandson of Shem?), 210

 Sálih (his she-camel), 235

 Sálíh al-Muzani (theologian), 261

 Salli ala ‘l-Nabi = bless the prophet (imposing silence), 65

 Salutation (the first), 200

 —— (Salám, unwillingly addressed to a Christian), 284

 Sana’á (Capital of Al-Yaman), 16

 Sandal (scented with), 192

 Sandali (eunuch deprived of penis and testes), 46

 Sar’a = falling sickness, 28

 Sardáb = underground chamber, 128

 Sarídah (Tharídah) brewis, 223

 Sawálif = tresses, locks, 158

 Sayhún and Jayhún = Jaxartes and Oxus, 41

 Sayyid (descendant from Mohammed through Al-Hasan), 259

 Scabbard (Ar. Ghimd), 158

 Schoolmaster (derided in East and West), 118

 Seal (affixed to make an act binding), 184

 —— (breaking the = taking the maidenhead), 154

 Seas (fresh = lakes and rivers), 326

 Secrets (instances and sayings with regard to their keeping), 83

 Seeking refuge with Allah, 200

 Sha’abán (moon of), 191

 Sháh-púr = King’s son (Sábúr, Σαβὼρ, Sapor), 2

 Shakuríyah = chicorée, 226

 Shams al-Nahár (Pr. N. = Sun of the Day), 9

 Shaybán (Arab tribe), 100

 Shaykh Nasr (Pr. N. = Elder of victory), 343

 Shikk = split man (a kind of demon), 333

 Shinf = gunny-bag, 45

 Shirk (= syntheism) of love, 9

 —— of the Mushrik, 142

 Shroud (joined in one = shrouded together?), 71

 Shu’ayb = Jethro, 210

 Sídí (from Sayyidi = my lord), 283

 Sídi Ibrahím bin al-Khawwás (Pr. N.), 283

 Sifr = whistling, 333

 Sinai (convent famous for Rákí), 65

 Sind (matting of), 145

 Sitt al-Mashá’ikh = Lady of Shaykhs, 154

 Slain were those who were slain = many were slain, 364

 Slate (Lauh), 73

 Slaughtering (ritual for), 391

 Slaves (their ambition to have slaves of their own), 12

 Sleeping (naked), 8

 —— (with head and body covered by a sheet), 18

 Smile (and laughter), 193

 Sodomite (Lúti), 161

 —— (punished detected), 160

 Solomon and David (their burial-place), 310

 Sortes Virgilianæ, 44

 Soul (Thou knowest what is in mine and I know not what is in Thine),

 —— (doctrine of the three), 218

 Squeeze of the tomb (Fishár), 111

 Stations of the Moon (Manázil), 228

 Stones (precious), 342

 Stoning (of the devil at Mina), 203

 Strangers (treated with kindly care), 171

 “Strangers yet” (Lord Houghton quoted), 284

 Sufis (stages of their Journey), 264

 —— (address Allah as a lover would his beloved), 263; 298

 Sufrah (provision-bag and table-cloth), 8

 Sufyán (traditionist), 81

 Sukát (pl. of Sáki = cupbearer), 66

 Sukita fí aydíhim = it repented them, 191

 Suláfat = must, new wine, 158

 Sultán (anachronistic use of the title), 88; 179

 Sun and Moon (Luminaries for day and night), 228

 —— (do not outstrip each other), _ib._

 Sundus = brocade, 57

 Sunnat = practice of the Prophet, etc., 36; 167

 Susannah and the Elders in Moslem form, 97

 Swan-maidens, 346

 Tablet (Lauh), 37

 —— (the preserved), 322

 Takht = throne, capital, 334

 Takht-rawán = moving throne (mule-litter), 175

 Ta’mím = crowning with turband or tiara; covering, wetting, 199

 Taráib = breast-bone, 132

 Taríkat = (mystic) path to knowledge, 111

 Tasním (fountain in Paradise), 264

 Tawáf = Ka’abah-circuiting, 203

 Tawakkul ala ‘llah = trust in Allah, 208

 Tayammum = washing with sand, 197

 Teeth (their cleansing enjoined by Mohammed), 44

 “Thank you” (Moslem equivalent for), 171

 “They” for “She”, 41; 140

 Throne-verse, 211

 Thursday night (in Moslem parlance = Friday night), 324

 Tín = clay puddled with chaff, 112

 Tongue (made to utter (?) what is in the heart of man), 218

 Tooth-pick (Khilál), 44

 Torrens quoted, 96; 188

 Tree of Paradise (Túbá), 237

 Tricks (two = before and behind), 161

 Truth (most worthy to be followed), 145

 —— (is become manifest), 159

 Tuba (tree of Paradise), 237

 Tubah (fifth Coptic month), 231

 Tufayli = parasite, 130

 Tughrá = imperial cypher, 184

 Turbands (worn large by the learned), 120

 Turks (fair boy-slaves, abounding in Baghdad), 66

 Ukhnúkh = Enoch (Idrís?), 210

 Umm Amrí (mother of Amr’) and the ass, 118

 ‘Umrah = lesser Pilgrimage, 205

 Uns al Wujúd (Pr. N. = Delight of existing things), 33

 Urwah = handle, button-hole, 227

 Usury (Ribá), 201

 —— (verset of), 215

 Usús = os sacrum, 219

 ‘Utbi (Al-), poet, 133

 Versets (number of the Koranic), 110

 Virgil (a magician), 44

 Visits in dreamland, 47

 Viswakarmá = anti-creator, 320

 Wády al-Naml = Valley of the Emmets, 337

 Wády Zahrán = Valley Flowery, 360

 Walad = son (more ceremonious than “ibn”), 386

 Wali = saint, Santon, 112

 Wá Rahmatá-hu = Alas, the pity of it, 42

 Ward (Al-) fí’l-Akmám (Pr. N. = Rose in Hood), 32

 Water (had no taste in his mouth), 39

 —— (carrier, Sakká), 89

 Watwát = Bat, 226

 Wayha = Alas!, 258

 Where is—and where? = what a difference is there between, etc., 65

 Whistling, (held to be the devil’s speech), 333

 Wine (its prohibition not held absolute), 224

 Wird = the twenty-five last chapters of the Koran, 185

 Witnesses (one man = two women), 155

 Women (sleep naked in hot weather), 8

 —— (making the first advances), 34

 —— (and secrets), 35; 83

 —— (wives of eunuchs), 46

 —— (visiting their lovers in a dream), 47

 —— (thought to be Jinn or Ghúl), 51

 —— (called Zaurá, the crooked), 66

 —— (allowed to absent themselves from the house of father or husband),

 Women (instructed in “motitations”), 80

 —— (apt for two tricks), 161

 —— (old, polite equivalents for), 163

 —— (in their prime at fourteen to fifteen), 192

 —— (inferior to man), 155

 —— (unveiling to a man, if not slaves, insult him), 194

 Wuzú (Koranic order for), 198

 —— (angels and devils at the side of a man who prepares for it), _ib._

 Yá ‘Ajúz = O old woman (now insulting), 163

 Yájúj and Májúj, 318

 Yá Kawwád = O pímp, 129

 Yá Kisrawí = O subject of the Kisrá, 26

 Yákút = Ruby, garnet, etc., 342

 Yá Sáki’ al-Dakan = O frosty-beard, 99

 Yohanná (Greek Physician), 154

 Zabiyah (Pr. N. = roe, doe), 147

 Zaghab = the chick’s down, 165

 Zambúr = clitoris (the shutter), 279

 Zarr wa ‘urwah = button and button-hole, 227

 Zaurá = the crooked, for woman, 66

 Zidd = opposite, contrary, 206

 Zind and Zindah = fire-sticks, 52

 Zindík = Agnostic, atheist, 230

 Zuhri (Al-), traditionist, 81



                          TRANSCRIBER’S NOTES

 1. Added missing footnote numbers on pp. 5, 111, and 135.
 2. Changed ‘in goal’ to ‘in gaol’ on p. 28.
 3. Added missing footnote anchors on pp. 37, 105, 197, 298, and 392.
 4. Changed ‘commun is’ to ‘commun in’ on p. 49.
 5. Added ‘to’ between ‘Speak’ and ‘him’ on p. 124.
 6. Changed ‘knew were’ to ‘knew where’ on p. 133.
 7. Removed ‘a’ from ‘friends a’ on p. 339.
 8. Changed ‘streams ann’ to ‘streams and’ on p. 353.
 9. Changed ‘perceived he’ to ‘perceived the’ on p. 353.
10. Silently corrected simple spelling, grammar, and typographical
11. Retained anachronistic and non-standard spellings as printed.
12. Enclosed italics font in _underscores_.

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