By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII ]

Look for this book on Amazon

We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

Title: The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night — Volume 08
Author: Richard F. Burton, - To be updated
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night — Volume 08" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.


A Plain and Literal Translation

of the Arabian Nights Entertainments

Translated and Annotated by
 Richard F. Burton 


Privately Printed By The Burton Club

                          A Message to

                       Frederick Hankey,

            formerly of No. 2, Rue Laffitte, Paris.

My Dear Fred,

If there be such a thing as "continuation," you will see these lines in the far
Spirit-land and you will find that your old friend has not forgotten you and

Richard F. Burton.

Contents of the Eighth Volume

 King Mohammed Bin Sabaik and the Merchant Hasan (continued)
 a. Story of Prince Sayf Al-Muluk and the Princess Badi'a Al-Jamal (continued)
 155. Hassan of Bassorah
 156. Khalifah The Fisherman Of Baghdad
 The same from the Breslau Edition
 157. Masrur and Zayn Al-Mawasif
 158. Ali Nur Al-Din and Miriam the Girdle-Girl

The Book Of The


When it was the Seven Hundred and Seventy-seventh Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the old
Queen heard the handmaid's words she was wroth with sore wrath because
of her and cried, "How shall there be accord between man and Jinn?" But
Sayf al-Muluk replied, "Indeed, I will conform to thy will and be thy
page and die in thy love and will keep with thee covenant and regard
non but thee: so right soon shalt thou see my truth and lack of
falsehood and the excellence of my manly dealing with thee, Inshallah!"
The old woman pondered for a full hour with brow earthwards bent; after
which she raised her head and said to him, "O thou beautiful youth,
wilt thou indeed keep compact and covenant?" He replied, "Yes, by Him
who raised the heavens and dispread the earth upon the waters, I will
indeed keep faith and troth!" Thereupon quoth she, "I will win for thee
thy wish, Inshallah! but for the present go thou into the garden and
take thy pleasure therein and eat of its fruits, that have neither like
in the world nor equal, whilst I send for my son Shahyal and
confabulate with him of the matter. Nothing but good shall come of it,
so Allah please, for he will not gainsay me nor disobey my commandment
and I will marry thee with his daughter Badi'a al-Jamal. So be of good
heart for she shall assuredly be thy wife, O Sayf al-Muluk." The Prince
thanked her for those words and kissing her hands and feet, went forth
from her into the garden; whilst she turned to Marjanah and said to
her, "Go seek my son Shahyal wherever he is and bring him to me." So
Marjanah went out in quest of King Shahyal and found him and set him
before his mother. On such wise fared it with them; but as regards Sayf
al-Muluk, whilst he walked in the garden, lo and behold! five Jinn of
the people of the Blue King espied him and said to one another, "Whence
cometh yonder wight and who brought him hither? Haply 'tis he who slew
the son and heir of our lord and master the Blue King;" presently
adding, 'But we will go about with him and question him and find out
all from him." So they walked gently and softly up to him, as he sat in
a corner of the garden, and sitting down by him, said to him, "O
beauteous youth, thou didst right well in slaying the son of the Blue
King and delivering from him Daulat Khatun; for he was a treacherous
hound and had tricked her, and had not Allah appointed thee to her, she
had never won free; no, never! But how diddest thou slay him?" Sayf
al-Muluk looked at them and deeming them of the gardenfolk, answered,
"I slew him by means of this ring which is on my finger." Therewith
they were assured that it was he who had slain him; so they seized him,
two of them holding his hands, whilst other two held his feet and the
fifth his mouth, lest he should cry out and King Shahyal's people
should hear him and rescue him from their hands. Then they lifted him
up and flying away with him ceased not their flight till they came to
their King and set him down before him, saying, "O King of the Age, we
bring thee the murderer of thy son." "Where is he?" asked the King and
they answered, "This is he." So the Blue King said to Sayf al-Muluk,
"How slewest thou my son, the core of my heart and the light of my
sight, without aught of right, for all he had done thee no ill deed?"
Quoth the Prince, "Yea, verily! I slew him because of his violence and
frowardness, in that he used to seize Kings' daughters and sever them
from their families and carry them to the Ruined Well and the
High-builded Castle of Japhet son of Noah and entreat them lewdly by
debauching them. I slew him by means of this ring on my finger, and
Allah hurried his soul to the fire and the abiding-place dire."
Therewithal the King was assured that this was indeed he who slew his
son; so presently he called his Wazirs and said to them, "This is the
murtherer of my son sans shadow of doubt: so how do you counsel me to
deal with him? Shall I slay him with the foulest slaughter or torture
him with the terriblest torments or how?" Quoth the Chief Minister,
"Cut off his limbs, one a day." Another, "Beat him with a grievous
beating every day till he die." A third, "Cut him across the middle." A
fourth, "Chop off all his fingers and burn him with fire." A fifth,
"Crucify him;" and so on, each speaking according to his rede. Now
there was with the Blue King an old Emir, versed in the vicissitudes
and experienced in the exchanges of the times, and he said, "O King of
the Age, verily I would say to thee somewhat, and thine is the rede
whether thou wilt hearken or not to my say." Now he was the King's
privy Councillor and the Chief Officer of his empire, and the Sovran
was wont to give ear to his word and conduct himself by his counsel and
gainsay him not in aught. So he rose and kissing ground before his
liege lord, said to him, "O King of the Age, if I advise thee in this
matter, wilt thou follow my advice and grant me indemnity?" Quoth the
King, "Set forth thine opinion, and thou shalt have immunity." Then
quoth he, "O King of the Age, an thou slay this one nor accept my
advice nor hearken to my word, in very sooth I say that his death were
now inexpedient, for that he his thy prisoner and in thy power, and
under thy protection; so whenas thou wilt, thou mayst lay hand on him
and do with him what thou desirest. Have patience, then, O King of the
Age, for he hath entered the garden of Iram and is become the betrothed
of Badi'a al-Jamal, daughter of King Shahyal, and one of them. Thy
people seized him there and brought him hither and he did not hide his
case from them or from thee. So an thou slay him, assuredly King
Shahyal will seek blood-revenge and lead his host against thee for his
daughter's sake, and thou canst not cope with him nor make head against
his power." So the King hearkened to his counsel and commanded to
imprison the captive. Thus fared it with Sayf al-Muluk; but as regards
the old Queen, grandmother of Badi'a al-Jamal, when her son Shahyal
came to her she despatched Marjanah in search of Sayf al-Muluk; but she
found him not and returning to her mistress, said, "I found him not in
the garden." So the ancient dame sent for the gardeners and questioned
them of the Prince. Quoth they, "We saw him sitting under a tree when
behold, five of the Blue King's folk alighted by him and spoke with
him, after which they took him up and having gagged him flew away with
him." When the old Queen heard the damsel's words it was no light
matter to her and she was wroth with exceeding wrath: so she rose to
her feet and said to her son, King Shahyal, "Art a King and shall the
Blue King's people come to our garden and carry off our guests
unhindered, and thou alive?" And she proceeded to provoke him, saying,
"It behoveth not that any transgress against us during thy
lifetime."[FN#1] Answered he, "O mother of me, this man slew the Blue
King's son, who was a Jinni and Allah threw him into his hand. He is a
Jinni and I am a Jinni: how then shall I go to him and make war on him
for the sake of a mortal?" But she rejoined, "Go to him and demand our
guest of him, and if he be still alive and the Blue King deliver him to
thee, take him and return; but an he have slain him, take the King and
all his children and Harim and household depending on him; then bring
them to me alive that I may cut their throats with my own hand and lay
in ruins his reign. Except thou go to him and do my bidding, I will not
acquit thee of my milk and my rearing of thee shall be counted
unlawful."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Seventy-eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the grandmother
of Badi'a al-Jamal said to Shahyal, "Fare thee to the Blue King and
look after Sayf al-Muluk: if he be still in life come with him hither;
but an he have slain him take that King and all his children and Harim
and the whole of his dependents an protégés and bring them here alive
that I may cut their throats with my own hand and ruin his realm.
Except thou go to him and do my bidding, I will not acquit thee of my
milk and my rearing of thee shall be accounted unlawful." Thereupon
Shahyal rose and assembling his troops, set out, in deference to his
mother, desiring to content her and her friends, and in accordance with
whatso had been fore-ordained from eternity without beginning; nor did
they leave journeying till they came to the land of the Blue King, who
met them with his army and gave them battle. The Blue King's host was
put to the rout and the conquerors having taken him and all his sons,
great and small, and Grandees and officers bound and brought them
before King Shahyal, who said to the captive, "O Azrak,[FN#2] where is
the mortal Sayf al-Muluk who whilome was my guest?" Answered the Blue
King, "O Shahyal, thou art a Jinni and I am a Jinni and is't on account
of a mortal who slew my son that thou hast done this deed; yea, the
murtherer of my son, the core of my liver and solace of my soul. How
couldest thou work such work and spill the blood of so many thousand
Jinn?" He replied, "Leave this talk! Knowest thou not that a single
mortal is better, in Allah's sight, than a thousand Jinn?[FN#3] If he
be alive, bring him to me, and I will set thee free and all whom I have
taken of thy sons and people; but an thou have slain him, I will
slaughter thee and thy sons." Quoth the Malik al-Azrak, "O King, is
this man of more account with thee than my son?"; and quoth Shahyal,
"Verily, thy son was an evildoer who kidnapped Kings' daughters and
shut them up in the Ruined Well and the High-builded Castle of Japhet
son of Noah and entreated them lewdly." Then said the Blue King, "He is
with me; but make thou peace between us." So he delivered the Prince to
Shahyal, who made peace between him and the Blue King, and Al-Azrak
gave him a bond of absolution for the death of his son. Then Shahyal
conferred robes of honour on them and entertained the Blue King and his
troops hospitably for three days, after which he took Sayf al-Muluk and
carried him back to the old Queen, his own mother, who rejoiced in him
with an exceeding joy, and Shahyal marvelled at the beauty of the
Prince and his loveliness and his perfection. Then the Prince related
to him his story from beginning to end, especially what did befal him
with Badi'a al-Jamal and Shahyal said, "O my mother, since 'tis thy
pleasure that this should be, I hear and I obey all that to command it
pleaseth thee; wherefore do thou take him and bear him to Sarandib and
there celebrate his wedding and marry him to her in all state, for he
is a goodly youth and hath endured horrors for her sake." So she and
her maidens set out with Sayf al-Muluk for Sarandib and, entering the
Garden belonging to the Queen of Hind, foregathered with Daulat Khatun
and Badi'a al-Jamal. Then the lovers met, and the old Queen acquainted
the two Princesses with all that had passed between Sayf al-Muluk and
the Blue King and how the Prince had been nearhand to a captive's
death; but in repetition is no fruition. Then King Taj al-Muluk father
of Daulat Khatun assembled the lords of his land and drew up the
contract of marriage between Sayf al-Muluk and Badi'a al-Jamal; and he
conferred costly robes of honour and gave banquets to the lieges. Then
Sayf al-Muluk rose and, kissing ground before the King, said to him, "O
King, pardon! I would fain ask of thee somewhat but I fear lest thou
refuse it to my disappointment." Taj al-Muluk replied, "By Allah,
though thou soughtest my soul of me, I would not refuse it to thee,
after all the kindness thou hast done me!" Quoth Sayf al-Muluk, "I wish
thee to marry the Princess Daulat Khatun to my brother Sa'id, and we
will both be thy pages." "I hear and obey," answered Taj al-Muluk, and
assembling his Grandees a second time, let draw up the contract of
marriage between his daughter and Sa'id; after which they scattered
gold and silver and the King bade decorate the city. So they held high
festival and Sayf al-Muluk went in unto Badi'a al-Jamal and Sa'id went
in unto Daulat Khatun on the same night. Moreover Sayf al-Muluk abode
forty days with Badi'a al-Jamal, at the end of which she said to him,
"O King's son, say me, is there left in thy heart any regret for
aught?" And he replied, "Allah forfend! I have accomplished my quest
and there abideth no regret in my heart at all: but I would fain meet
my father and my mother in the land of Egypt and see if they continue
in welfare or not." So she commanded a company of her slaves to convey
them to Egypt, and they carried them to Cairo, where Sayf al-Muluk and
Sa'id foregathered with their parents and abode with them a week; after
which they took leave of them and returned to Sarandib-city; and from
this time forwards, whenever they longed for their folk, they used to
go to them and return. Then Sayf al-Muluk and Badi'a al-Jamal abode in
all solace of life and its joyance as did Sa'id and Daulat Khatun, till
there came to them the Destroyer of delights and Severer of societies;
and they all died good Moslems. So glory be to the Living One who dieth
not, who createth all creatures and decreeth to them death and who is
the First, without beginning, and the Last, without end! This is all
that hath come down to us of the story of Sayf al-Muluk and Badi'a
al-Jamal. And Allah alone wotteth the truth.[FN#4] But not less
excellent than this tale is the History of


There was once of days of yore and in ages and times long gone before,
a merchant, who dwelt in the land of Bassorah and who owned two sons
and wealth galore.  But in due time Allah, the All-hearing the
All-knowing, decreed that he should be admitted to the mercy of the
Most High; so he died, and his two sons laid him out and buried him,
after which they divided his gardens and estates equally between them
and of his portion each one opened a shop.[FN#6] Presently the elder
son, Hasan hight, a youth of passing beauty and loveliness, symmetry
and perfect grace, betook himself to the company of lewd folk, women
and low boys, frolicking with them in gardens and feasting them with
meat and wine for months together and occupying himself not with his
business like as his father had done, for that he exulted in the
abundance of his good. After some time he had wasted all his ready
money, so he sold all his father's lands and houses and played the
wastrel until there remained in his hand nothing, neither little nor
muchel, nor was one of his comrades left who knew him.  He abode thus
anhungred, he and his widowed mother, three days, and on the fourth
day, as he walked along, unknowing whither to wend, there met him a man
of his father's friends, who questioned him of his case. He told him
what had befallen him and the other said, "O my son, I have a brother
who is a goldsmith; an thou wilt, thou shalt be with him and learn his
craft and become skilled therein." Hasan consented and accompanied him
to his brother, to whom he commended him, saying, "In very sooth this
is my son; do thou teach him for my sake."  So Hasan abode with the
goldsmith and busied himself with the craft; and Allah opened to him
the door of gain and in due course he set up shop for himself. One day,
as he sat in his booth in the bazar, there came up to him an 'Ajamí, a
foreigner, a Persian, with a great white beard and a white
turband[FN#7] on his head, having the semblance of a merchant who,
after saluting him, looked at his handiwork and examined it knowingly. 
It pleased him and he shook his head, saying, "By Allah, thou art a
cunning goldsmith!  What may be thy name?" "Hasan," replied the other,
shortly.[FN#8]  The Persian continued to look at his wares, whilst
Hasan read in an old book[FN#9] he hent in hand and the folk were taken
up with his beauty and loveliness and symmetry and perfect grace, till
the hour of mid-afternoon prayer, when the shop became clear of people
and the Persian accosted the young man, saying, "O my son, thou art a
comely youth! What book is that?  Thou hast no sire and I have no son,
and I know an art, than which there is no goodlier in the world."—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Seven Hundred and Seventy-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Persian
accosted the young man saying, "O my son, thou art a comely youth! 
Thou hast no sire and I have no son, and I know an art than which there
is no goodlier in the world. Many have sought of me instruction
therein, but I consented not to instruct any of them in it; yet hath my
soul consented that I teach it to thee, for thy love hath gotten hold
upon my heart and I will make thee my son and set up between thee and
poverty a barrier, so shalt thou be quit of this handicraft and toil no
more with hammer and anvil,[FN#10] charcoal and fire."  Hasan asked, "O
my lord and when wilt thou teach me this?"; and the Persian answered,
"To-morrow, Inshallah, I will come to thee betimes and make thee in thy
presence fine gold of this copper."  Whereupon Hasan rejoiced and sat
talking with the Persian till nightfall, when he took leave of him and
going in to his mother, saluted her with the salam and ate with her;
but he was dazed, without memory or reason, for that the stranger's
words had gotten hold upon his heart. So she questioned him and he told
her what had passed between himself and the Persian, which when she
heard, her heart fluttered and she strained him to her bosom, saying,
"O my son, beware of hearkening to the talk of the folk, and especially
of the Persians, and obey them not in aught; for they are sharpers and
tricksters, who profess the art of alchemy[FN#11] and swindle people
and take their money and devour it in vain."  Replied Hasan, "O my
mother, we are paupers and have nothing he may covet, that he should
put a cheat on us. Indeed, this Persian is a right worthy Shaykh and
the signs of virtue are manifest on him; Allah hath inclined his heart
to me and he hath adopted me to son."  She was silent in her chagrin,
and he passed the night without sleep, his heart being full of what the
Persian had said to him; nor did slumber visit him for the excess of
his joy therein.  But when morning morrowed, he rose and taking the
keys, opened the shop, whereupon behold, the Persian accosted him.
Hasan stood up to him and would have kissed his hands; but he forbade
him from this and suffered it not, saying, "O Hasan, set on the
crucible and apply the bellows."[FN#12]  So he did as the stranger bade
him and lighted the charcoal. Then said the Persian, "O my son, hast
thou any copper?" and he replied, "I have a broken platter." So he bade
him work the shears[FN#13] and cut it into bittocks and cast it into
the crucible and blow up the fire with the bellows, till the copper
became liquid, when he put hand to turband and took therefrom a folded
paper and opening it, sprinkled thereout into the pot about half a
drachm of somewhat like yellow Kohl or eyepowder.[FN#14]  Then he bade
Hasan blow upon it with the bellows, and he did so, till the contents
of the crucible became a lump of gold.[FN#15]  When the youth saw this,
he was stupefied and at his wits' end for the joy he felt and taking
the ingot from the crucible handled it and tried it with the file and
found it pure gold of the finest quality: whereupon his reason fled and
he was dazed with excess of delight and bent over the Persian's hand to
kiss it. But he forbade him, saying, "Art thou married?" and when the
youth replied "No!" he said, "Carry this ingot to the market and sell
it and take the price in haste and speak not."  So Hasan went down into
the market and gave the bar to the broker, who took it and rubbed it
upon the touchstone and found it pure gold.  So they opened the
biddings at ten thousand dirhams and the merchants bid against one
another for it up to fifteen thousand dirhams,[FN#16] at which price he
sold it and taking the money, went home and told his mother all that
had passed, saying, "O my mother, I have learnt this art and mystery." 
But she laughed at him, saying, "There is no Majesty and there is no
Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!"—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eightieth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan
the goldsmith told his mother what he had done with the Ajami and
cried, "I have learnt this art and mystery," she laughed at him,
saying, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah, the
Glorious, the Great!"; and she was silent for vexation.  Then of his
ignorance, he took a metal mortar and returning to the shop, laid it
before the Persian, who was still sitting there and asked him, "O my
son, what wilt thou do with this mortar?"  Hasan answered, "Let us put
it in the fire, and make of it lumps of gold." The Persian laughed and
rejoined, "O my son, art thou Jinn-mad that thou wouldst go down into
the market with two ingots of gold in one day?  Knowest thou not that
the folk would suspect us and our lives would be lost? Now, O my son,
an I teach thee this craft, thou must practise it but once in each
twelvemonth; for that will suffice thee from year to year."  Cried
Hasan, "True, O my lord," and sitting down in his open shop, set on the
crucible and cast more charcoal on the fire. Quoth the Persian, "What
wilt thou, O my son?"; and quoth Hasan, "Teach me this craft."  "There
is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the
Great!" exclaimed the Persian, laughing; "Verily, O my son, thou art
little of wit and in nowise fitted for this noble craft.  Did ever any
during all his life learn this art on the beaten way or in the bazars? 
If we busy ourselves with it here, the folk will say of us, These
practise alchemy; and the magistrates will hear of us, and we shall
lose our lives.[FN#17] Wherefore, O my son, an thou desire to learn
this mystery forthright, come thou with me to my house."  So Hasan
barred his shop and went with that Ajamí; but by the way he remembered
his mother's words and thinking in himself a thousand thoughts he stood
still, with bowed head.  The Persian turned and seeing him thus
standing laughed and said to him, "Art thou mad?  What!  I in my heart
purpose thee good and thou misdoubtest I will harm thee!" presently
adding, "But, if thou fear to go with me to my house, I will go with
thee to thine and teach thee there."  Hasan replied, "'Tis well, O
uncle," and the Persian rejoined, "Go thou before me."  So Hasan led
the way to his own house, and entering, told his mother of the
Persian's coming, for he had left him standing at the door.  She
ordered the house for them and when she had made an end of furnishing
and adorning it, her son bade her go to one of the neighbours'
lodgings.  So she left her home to them and wended her way, whereupon
Hasan brought in the Persian, who entered after asking leave.  Then he
took in hand a dish and going to the market, returned with food, which
he set before the Persian, saying, "Eat, O my lord, that between us
there may be bread and salt and may Almighty Allah do vengeance upon
the traitor to bread and salt!"  The Persian replied with a smile,
"True, O my son!  Who knoweth the virtue and worth of bread and
salt?"[FN#18]  Then he came forward and ate with Hasan, till they were
satisfied; after which the Ajami said, "O my son Hasan, bring us
somewhat of sweetmeats."  So Hasan went to the market, rejoicing in his
words, and returned with ten saucers[FN#19] of sweetmeats, of which
they both ate and the Persian said, "May Allah abundantly requite thee,
O my son!  It is the like of thee with whom folk company and to whom
they discover their secrets and teach what may profit him!"[FN#20] 
Then said he, "O Hasan bring the gear." But hardly did Hasan hear these
words than he went forth like a colt let out to grass in spring-tide,
and hastening to the shop, fetched the apparatus and set it before the
Persian, who pulled out a piece of paper and said, "O Hasan, by the
bond of bread and salt, wert thou not dearer to me than my son, I would
not let thee into the mysteries of this art, for I have none of the
Elixir[FN#21] left save what is in this paper; but by and by I will
compound the simples whereof it is composed and will make it before
thee.  Know, O my son Hasan, that to every ten pounds of copper thou
must set half a drachm of that which is in this paper, and the whole
ten will presently become unalloyed virgin gold;" presently adding, "O
my son, O Hasan, there are in this paper three ounces,[FN#22] Egyptian
measure, and when it is spent, I will make thee other and more."  Hasan
took the packet and finding therein a yellow powder, finer than the
first, said to the Persian, "O my lord, what is the name of this
substance and where is it found and how is it made?"  But he laughed,
longing to get hold of the youth, and replied, "Of what dost thou
question? Indeed thou art a froward boy!  Do thy work and hold thy
peace." So Hasan arose and fetching a brass platter from the house,
shore it in shreds and threw it into the melting-pot; then he scattered
on it a little of the powder from the paper and it became a lump of
pure gold.  When he saw this, he joyed with exceeding joy and was
filled with amazement and could think of nothing save the gold; but,
whilst he was occupied with taking up the lumps of metal from the
melting-pot, the Persian pulled out of his turband in haste a packet of
Cretan Bhang, which if an elephant smelt, he would sleep from night to
night, and cutting off a little thereof, put it in a piece of the
sweetmeat.  Then said he, "O Hasan, thou art become my very son and
dearer to me than soul and wealth, and I have a daughter whose like
never have eyes beheld for beauty and loveliness, symmetry and perfect
grace. Now I see that thou befittest none but her and she none but
thee; wherefore, if it be Allah's will, I will marry thee to her."
Replied Hasan, "I am thy servant and whatso good thou dost with me will
be a deposit with the Almighty!" and the Persian rejoined, "O my son,
have fair patience and fair shall betide thee." Therewith he gave him
the piece of sweetmeat and he took it and kissing his hand, put it in
his mouth, knowing not what was hidden for him in the after time for
only the Lord of Futurity knoweth the Future.  But hardly had he
swallowed it, when he fell down, head foregoing heels, and was lost to
the world; whereupon the Persian, seeing him in such calamitous case,
rejoiced exceedingly and cried, "Thou hast fallen into my snares, O
gallows-carrion, O dog of the Arabs! This many a year have I sought
thee and now I have found thee, O Hasan!"—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighty-first Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan the
goldsmith ate the bit of sweetmeat given to him by the Ajami and fell
fainting to the ground, the Persian rejoiced exceedingly and cried,
"This many a year have I sought thee and now I have found thee!"  Then
he girt himself and pinioned Hasan's arms and binding his feet to his
hands laid him in a chest, which he emptied to that end and locked it
upon him. Moreover, he cleared another chest and laying therein all
Hasan's valuables, together with the piece of the first gold-lump and
the second ingot which he had made locked it with a padlock.  Then he
ran to the market and fetching a porter, took up the two chests and
made off with them to a place within sight of the city, where he set
them down on the sea-shore, hard by a vessel at anchor there.  Now this
craft had been freighted and fitted out by the Persian and her master
was awaiting him; so, when the crew saw him, they came to him and bore
the two chests on board.  Then the Persian called out to the Rais or
Captain, saying, "Up and let us be off, for I have done my desire and
won my wish."  So the skipper sang out to the sailors, saying, "Weigh
anchor and set sail!" And the ship put out to sea with a fair wind.  So
far concerning the Persian; but as regards Hasan's mother, she awaited
him till supper-time but heard neither sound nor news of him; so she
went to the house and finding it thrown open, entered and saw none
therein and missed the two chests and their valuables; wherefore she
knew that her son was lost and that doom had overtaken him; and she
buffeted her face and rent her raiment crying out and wailing and
saying, "Alas, my son, ah!  Alas, the fruit of my vitals, ah!"  And she
recited these couplets,

"My patience fails me and grows anxiety; * And with your absence
     growth of grief I see.
By Allah, Patience went what time ye went! * Loss of all Hope how
     suffer patiently?
When lost my loved one how can' joy I sleep? * Who shall enjoy
     such life of low degree?
Thou 'rt gone and, desolating house and home, * Hast fouled the
     fount erst flowed from foulness free:
Thou wast my fame, my grace 'mid folk, my stay; * Mine aid wast
     thou in all adversity!
Perish the day, when from mine eyes they bore * My friend, till
     sight I thy return to me!"

And she ceased not to weep and wail till the dawn, when the neighbours
came in to her and asked her of her son, and she told them what had
befallen him with the Persian, assured that she should never, never see
him again.  Then she went round about the house, weeping, and wending
she espied two lines written upon the wall; so she sent for a scholar,
who read them to her; and they were these,

"Leyla's phantom came by night, when drowsiness had overcome me,
     towards morning while my companions were sleeping in the
But when we awoke to behold the nightly phantom, I saw the air
     vacant and the place of visitation was distant."[FN#23]

When Hasan's mother heard these lines, she shrieked and said, "Yes, O
my son! Indeed, the house is desolate and the visitation-place is
distant!"  Then the neighbours took leave of her and after they had
prayed that she might be vouchsafed patience and speedy reunion with
her son, went away; but she ceased not to weep all watches of the night
and tides of the day and she built amiddlemost the house a tomb whereon
she let write Hasan's name and the date of his loss, and thenceforward
she quitted it not, but made a habit of incessantly biding thereby
night and day. Such was her case; but touching her son Hasan and the
Ajami, this Persian was a Magian, who hated Moslems with exceeding
hatred and destroyed all who fell into his power.  He was a lewd and
filthy villain, a hankerer after alchemy, an astrologer and a hunter of
hidden hoards, such an one as he of whom quoth the poet,

"A dog, dog-fathered, by dog-grandsire bred; * No good in dog
     from dog race issued:
E'en for a gnat no resting-place gives he * Who is composed of
     seed by all men shed."[FN#24]

The name of this accursed was Bahrám the Guebre, and he was wont, every
year, to take a Moslem and cut his throat for his own purposes.  So,
when he had carried out his plot against Hasan the goldsmith, they
sailed on from dawn till dark, when the ship made fast to the shore for
the night, and at sunrise, when they set sail again, Bahram bade his
black slaves and white servants bring him the chest wherein were Hasan.
 They did so, and he opened it and taking out the young man, made him
sniff up vinegar and blew a powder into his nostrils. Hasan sneezed and
vomited the Bhang; then, opening his eyes, he looked about him right
and left and found himself amiddleward the sea on aboard a ship in full
sail, and saw the Persian sitting by him; wherefore he knew that the
accursed Magian had put a cheat on him and that he had fallen into the
very peril against which his mother had warned him.  So he spake the
saying which shall never shame the sayer, to wit, "There is no Majesty
and there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!  Verity,
we are Allah's and unto Him we are returning! O my God, be Thou
gracious to me in Thine appointment and give me patience to endure this
Thine affliction, O Lord of the three Worlds!"  Then he turned to the
Persian and bespoke him softly, saying, "O my father, what fashion is
this and where is the covenant of bread and salt and the oath thou
swarest to me?"[FN#25]  But Bahram stared at him and replied, "O dog,
knoweth the like of me bond of bread and salt? I have slain of youths
like thee a thousand, save one, and thou shalt make up the thousand." 
And he cried out at him and Hasan was silent, knowing that the
Fate-shaft had shot him.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighty-second Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan
beheld himself fallen into the hands of the damned Persian he bespoke
him softly but gained naught thereby for the Ajami cried out at him in
wrath, so he was silent, knowing that the Fate-shaft had shot him. 
Then the accursed bade loose his pinion-bonds and they gave him a
little water to drink, whilst the Magian laughed and said, "By the
virtue of the Fire and the Light and the Shade and the Heat, methought
not thou wouldst fall into my nets!  But the Fire empowered me over
thee and helped me to lay hold upon thee, that I might win my wish and
return and make thee a sacrifice, to her[FN#26] so she may accept of
me." Quoth Hasan, "Thou hast foully betrayed bread and salt"; whereupon
the Magus raised his hand and dealt him such a buffet that he fell and,
biting the deck with his fore-teeth, swooned away, whilst the tears
trickled down his cheeks.  Then the Guebre bade his servants light him
a fire and Hasan said, "What wilt thou do with it?" Replied the Magian,
"This is the Fire, lady of light and sparkles bright!  This it is I
worship, and if thou wilt worship her even as I, verily I will give
thee half my monies and marry thee to my maiden daughter."  Thereupon
Hasan cried angrily at him, "Woe to thee!  Thou art a miscreant Magian
who to Fire dost pray in lieu of the King of Omnipotent sway, Creator
of Night and Day; and this is naught but a calamity among creeds!" At
this the Magian was wroth and said to him, "Wilt thou not then conform
with me, O dog of the Arabs, and enter my faith?"  But Hasan consented
not to this: so the accursed Guebre arose and prostrating himself to
the fire, bade his pages throw him flat on his face. They did so, and
he beat him with a hide whip of plaited thongs[FN#27] till his flanks
were laid open, whilst he cried aloud for aid but none aided him, and
besought protection, but none protected him. Then he raised his eyes to
the All-powerful King and sought of Him succour in the name of the
Chosen Prophet.  And indeed patience failed him; his tears ran down his
cheeks, like rain, and he repeated these couplets twain,

"In patience, O my God, Thy doom forecast * I'll bear, an thereby
     come Thy grace at last:
They've dealt us wrong, transgressed and ordered ill; * Haply Thy
     Grace  shall pardon what is past."

Then the Magian bade his negro-slaves raise him to a sitting posture
and bring him somewhat of meat and drink.  So they sat food before him;
but he consented not to eat or drink; and Bahram ceased not to torment
him day and night during the whole voyage, whilst Hasan took patience
and humbled himself in supplication before Almighty Allah to whom
belong Honour and Glory; whereby the Guebre's heart was hardened
against him. They ceased not to sail the sea three months, during which
time Hasan was continually tortured till Allah Almighty sent forth upon
them a foul wind and the sea grew black and rose against the ship, by
reason of the fierce gale; whereupon quoth the captain and crew,[FN#28]
"By Allah, this is all on account of yonder youth, who hath been these
three months in torture with this Magian. Indeed, this is not allowed
of God the Most High."  Then they rose against the Magian and slew his
servants and all who were with him; which when he saw, he made sure of
death and feared for himself.  So he loosed Hasan from his bonds and
pulling off the ragged clothes the youth had on, clad him in others;
and made excuses to him and promised to teach him the craft and restore
him to his native land, saying, "O my son, return me not evil for that
I have done with thee."  Quoth Hasan, "How can I ever rely upon thee
again?"; and quoth Bahram, "O my son, but for sin, there were no
pardon.  Indeed, I did all these doings with thee, but to try thy
patience, and thou knowest that the case is altogether in the hands of
Allah." So the crew and captain rejoiced in Hasan's release, and he
called down blessings on them and praised the Almighty and thanked Him.
 With this the wind was stilled and the sky cleared and with a fair
breeze they continued their voyage. Then said Hasan to Bahram, "O
Master,[FN#29] whither wendest thou?" Replied the Magian, "O my son, I
am bound for the Mountain of Clouds, where is the Elixir which we use
in alchemy."  And the Guebre swore to him by the Fire and the Light
that he had no longer any cause to fear him.  So Hasan's heart was set
at ease and rejoicing at the Persian's words, he continued to eat and
drink and sleep with the Magian, who clad him in his own raiment.  They
ceased not sailing on other three months, when the ship came to anchor
off a long shoreline of many- coloured pebbles, white and yellow and
sky-blue and black and every other hue, and the Magian sprang up and
said, "O Hasan, come, let us go ashore for we have reached the place of
our wish and will."  So Hasan rose and landed with Bahram, after the
Persian had commended his goods to the captain's care. They walked on
inland, till they were far enough from the ship to be out of sight,
when Bahram sat down and taking from his pocket a kettle-drum[FN#30] of
copper and a silken strap, worked in gold with characts, beat the drum
with the strap, until there arose a cloud of dust from the further side
of the waste.  Hasan marvelled at the Magian's doings and was afraid of
him: he repented of having come ashore with him and his colour changed.
But Bahram looked at him and said, "What aileth thee, O my son? By the
truth of the Fire and the Light, thou hast naught to fear from me; and,
were it not that my wish may never be won save by thy means, I had not
brought thee ashore.  So rejoice in all good; for yonder cloud of dust
is the dust of somewhat we will mount and which will aid us to cut
across this wold and make easy to us the hardships thereof."—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighty-third Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Persian
said to Hasan, "In very sooth yonder dust-cloud is the cloud of
something we will mount and which will aid us to cut across this wold
and will make easy to us the hardships thereof." Presently the dust
lifted off three she-dromedaries, one of which Bahram mounted and Hasan
another.  Then they loaded their victual on the third and fared on
seven days, till they came to a wide champaign and, descending into its
midst, they saw a dome vaulted upon four pilasters of red gold; so they
alighted and entering thereunder, ate and drank and took their rest. 
Anon Hasan chanced to glance aside and seeing from afar a something
lofty said to the Magian, "What is that, O nuncle?"  Bahram replied,
"'Tis a palace," and quoth Hasan, "Wilt thou not go thither, that we
may enter and there repose ourselves and solace ourselves with
inspecting it?"  But the Persian was wroth and said, "Name not to me
yonder palace; for therein dwelleth a foe, with whom there befel me
somewhat whereof this is no time to tell thee." Then he beat the
kettle-drum and up came the dromedaries, and they mounted and fared on
other seven days.  On the eighth day, the Magian said, "O Hasan, what
seest thou?"  Hasan replied, "I see clouds and mists twixt east and
west." Quoth Bahram, "That is neither clouds nor mists, but a vast
mountain and a lofty whereon the clouds split,[FN#31] and there are no
clouds above it, for its exceeding height and surpassing elevation. 
Yon mount is my goal and thereon is the need we seek. 'Tis for that I
brought thee hither, for my wish may not be won save at thy hands." 
Hasan hearing this gave his life up for lost and said to the Magian,
"By the right of that thou worshippest and by the faith wherein thou
believest, I conjure thee to tell me what is the object wherefor thou
hast brought me!"  Bahram replied, "The art of alchemy may not be
accomplished save by means of a herb which groweth in the place where
the clouds pass and whereon they split. Such a site is yonder mountain
upon whose head the herb groweth and I purpose to send thee up thither
to fetch it; and when we have it, I will show thee the secret of this
craft which thou desirest to learn."  Hasan answered, in his fear,
"'Tis well, O my master;" and indeed he despaired of life and wept for
his parting from his parent and people and patrial stead, repenting him
of having gainsaid his mother and reciting these two couplets,

"Consider but thy Lord, His work shall bring * Comfort to thee,
     with quick  relief and near:
Despair not when thou sufferest sorest bane: * In bane how many
     blessed  boons appear!"

They ceased not faring on till they came to the foothills of that
mountain where they halted; and Hasan saw thereon a palace and asked
Bahram, "What be yonder palace?"; whereto he answered, "'Tis the abode
of the Jann and Ghuls and Satans."  Then the Magian alighted and making
Hasan also dismount from his dromedary kissed his head and said to him,
"Bear me no ill will anent that I did with thee, for I will keep guard
over thee in thine ascent to the palace; and I conjure thee not to
trick and cheat me of aught thou shalt bring therefrom; and I and thou
will share equally therein."  And Hasan replied, "To hear is to obey."
Then Bahram opened a bag and taking out a handmill and a sufficiency of
wheat, ground the grain and kneaded three round cakes of the flour;
after which he lighted a fire and baked the bannocks. Then he took out
the copper kettle-drum and beat it with the broidered strap, whereupon
up came the dromedaries. He chose out one and said, "Hearken, O my son,
O Hasan, to what I am about to enjoin on thee;" and Hasan replied,
"'Tis well."  Bahram continued, "Lie down on this skin and I will sew
thee up therein and lay thee on the ground; whereupon the Rakham
birds[FN#32] will come to thee and carry thee up to the mountain-top. 
Take this knife with thee; and, when thou feelest that the birds have
done flying and have set thee down, slit open therewith the skin and
come forth.  The vultures will then take fright at thee and fly away;
whereupon do thou look down from the mountain head and speak to me, and
I will tell thee what to do."  So he sewed him up in the skin, placing
therein three cakes and a leathern bottle full of water, and withdrew
to a distance. Presently a vulture pounced upon him and taking him up,
flew away with him to the mountain-top and there set him down.  As soon
as Hasan felt himself on the ground, he slit the skin and coming forth,
called out to the Magian, who hearing his speech rejoiced and danced
for excess of joy, saying to him, "Look behind thee and tell me what
thou seest."  Hasan looked and seeing many rotten bones and much wood,
told Bahram, who said to him, "This be what we need and seek. Make six
bundles of the wood and throw them down to me, for this is wherewithal
we do alchemy."  So he threw him the six bundles and when he had gotten
them into his power he said to Hasan, "O gallows bird, I have won my
wish of thee; and now, if thou wilt, thou mayst abide on this mountain,
or cast thyself down to the earth and perish.  So saying, he left
him[FN#33] and went away, and Hasan exclaimed, "There is no Majesty and
there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!  This hound
hath played the traitor with me." And he sat bemoaning himself and
reciting these couplets,

"When God upon a man possessed of reasoning, Hearing and sight
     His will in aught to pass would bring,
He stops his ears and blinds his eyes and draws his wit, From
     him, as one  draws out the hairs to paste that cling;
Till, His decrees fulfilled, He gives him back His wit, That
     therewithal he  may receive admonishing.
So say thou not of aught that haps, 'How happened it?' For Fate
     and  fortune fixed do order everything.[FN#34]"

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

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighty-fourth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Magian sent Hasan to the mountain-top and made him throw down all he
required he presently reviled him and left him and wended his ways and
the youth exclaimed, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in
Allah, the Glorious, the Great! This damned hound hath played the
traitor."  Then he rose to his feet and looked right and left, after
which he walked on along the mountain top, in mind making certain of
death.  He fared on thus till he came to the counterslope of the
mountain, along which he saw a dark-blue sea, dashing with billows
clashing and yeasting waves each as it were a lofty mount.  So he sat
down and repeated what he might of the Koran and besought Allah the
Most High to ease him of his troubles, or by death or by deliverance
from such strait.  Then he recited for himself the
funeral-prayer[FN#35] and cast himself down into the main; but, the
waves bore him up by Allah's grace, so that he reached the water
unhurt, and the angel in whose charge is the sea watched over him, so
that the billows bore him safe to land, by the decree of the Most High.
Thereupon he rejoiced and praised Almighty Allah and thanked Him; after
which he walked on in quest of something to eat, for stress of hunger,
and came presently to the place where he had halted with the Magian,
Bahram.  Then he fared on awhile, till behold, he caught sight of a
great palace, rising high in air, and knew it for that of which he had
questioned the Persian and he had replied, "Therein dwelleth a foe, of
mine."  Hasan said to himself, "By Allah, needs must I enter yonder
palace; perchance relief awaiteth me there."  So coming to it and
finding the gate open, he entered the vestibule, where he saw seated on
a bench two girls like twin moons with a chess-cloth before them and
they were at play.  One of them raised her head to him and cried out
for joy saying, "By Allah, here is a son of Adam, and methinks 'tis he
whom Bahram the Magian brought hither this year!" So Hasan hearing her
words cast himself at their feet and wept with sore weeping and said,
"Yes, O my ladies, by Allah, I am indeed that unhappy." Then said the
younger damsel to her elder sister, "Bear witness against me,[FN#36] O
my sister, that this is my brother by covenant of Allah and that I will
die for his death and live for his life and joy for his joy and mourn
for his mourning." So saying, she rose and embraced him and kissed him
and presently taking him by the hand and her sister with her, led him
into the palace, where she did off his ragged clothes and brought him a
suit of King's raiment wherewith she arrayed him. Moreover, she made
ready all manner viands[FN#37] and set them before him, and sat and ate
with him, she and her sister. Then said they to him, "Tell us thy tale
with yonder dog, the wicked, the wizard, from the time of thy falling
into his hands to that of thy freeing thee from him; and after we will
tell thee all that hath passed between us and him, so thou mayst be on
thy guard against him an thou see him again." Hearing these words and
finding himself thus kindly received, Hasan took heart of grace and
reason returned to him and he related to them all that had befallen him
with the Magian from first to last.  Then they asked, "Didst thou ask
him of this palace?"; and he answered, "Yes, but he said, 'Name it not
to me; for it belongeth to Ghuls and Satans.'" At this, the two damsels
waxed wroth with exceeding wrath and said, "Did that miscreant style us
Ghuls and Satans?" And Hasan answered, "Yes." Cried the younger sister,
"By Allah, I will assuredly do him die with the foulest death and make
him to lack the wind of the world!" Quoth Hasan, "And how wilt thou get
at him, to kill him, for he is a crafty magician?"; and quoth she, "He
is in a garden by name Al-Mushayyad,[FN#38] and there is no help but
that I slay him before long."  Then said her sister, "Sooth spake Hasan
in everything he hath recounted to us of this cur; but now tell him our
tale, that all of it may abide in his memory."  So the younger said to
him, "Know, O my brother, that we are the daughters of a King of the
mightiest Kings of the Jann, having Marids for troops and guards and
servants, and Almighty Allah blessed him with seven daughters by one
wife; but of his folly such jealousy and stiff-neckedness and pride
beyond compare gat hold upon him that he would not give us in marriage
to any one and, summoning his Wazirs and Emirs, he said to them, 'Can
ye tell me of any place untrodden by the tread of men and Jinn and
abounding in trees and fruits and rills?' And quoth they, 'What wilt
thou therewith, O King of the Age?' And quoth he, 'I desire there to
lodge my seven daughters.' Answered they, 'O King, the place for them
is the Castle of the Mountain of Clouds, built by an Ifrit of the
rebellious Jinn, who revolted from the covenant of our lord Solomon, on
whom be the Peace! Since his destruction, none hath dwelt there, nor
man nor Jinni, for 'tis cut off[FN#39] and none may win to it.  And the
Castle is girt about with trees and fruits and rills, and the water
running around it is sweeter than honey and colder than snow: none who
is afflicted with leprosy or elephantiasis[FN#40] or what not else
drinketh thereof but he is healed forthright. Hearing this our father
sent us hither, with an escort of his troops and guards and provided us
with all that we need here. When he is minded to ride to us he beateth
a kettle-drum, whereupon all his hosts present themselves before him
and he chooseth whom he shall ride and dismisseth the rest; but, when
he desireth that we shall visit him, he commandeth his followers, the
enchanters, to fetch us and carry us to the presence; so he may solace
himself with our society and we accomplish our desire of him; after
which they again carry us back hither.  Our five other sisters are gone
a-hunting in our desert, wherein are wild beasts past compt or
calculation and, it being our turn to do this we two abode at home, to
make ready for them food.  Indeed, we had besought Allah (extolled and
exalted be He!) to vouchsafe us a son of Adam to cheer us with his
company and praised be He who hath brought thee to us!  So be of good
cheer and keep thine eyes cool and clear, for no harm shall befal
thee."  Hasan rejoiced and said, "Alhamdolillah, laud to the Lord who
guideth us into the path of deliverance and inclineth hearts to us!"
Then his sister[FN#41] rose and taking him by the hand, led him into a
private chamber, where she brought out to him linen and furniture that
no mortal can avail unto.  Presently, the other damsels returned from
hunting and birding and their sisters acquainted them with Hasan's
case; whereupon they rejoiced in him and going into him in his chamber,
saluted him with the salam and gave him joy of his safety.  Then he
abode with them in all the solace of life and its joyance, riding out
with them to the chase and taking his pleasure with them whilst they
entreated him courteously and cheered him with converse, till his
sadness ceased from him and he recovered health and strength and his
body waxed stout and fat, by dint of fair treatment and pleasant time
among the seven moons in that fair palace with its gardens and flowers;
for indeed he led the delightsomest of lives with the damsels who
delighted in him and he yet more in them.  And they used to give him
drink of the honey-dew of their lips[FN#42] these beauties with the
high bosoms, adorned with grace and loveliness, the perfection of
brilliancy and in shape very symmetry.  Moreover the youngest Princess
told her sisters how Bahram the Magian had made them of the Ghuls and
Demons and Satans,[FN#43] and they sware that they would surely slay
him. Next year the accursed Guebre again made his appearance, having
with him a handsome young Moslem, as he were the moon, bound hand and
foot and tormented with grievous tortures, and alighted with him below
the palace-walls. Now Hasan was sitting under the trees by the side of
the stream; and when he espied Bahram, his heart fluttered,[FN#44] his
hue changed and he smote hand upon hand.—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighty-fifth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan the
goldsmith saw the Magian, his heart fluttered, his hue changed and he
smote hand upon hand.  Then he said to the Princesses, "O my sisters,
help me to the slaughter of this accursed, for here he is come back and
in your grasp, and he leadeth with him captive a young Moslem of the
sons of the notables, whom he is torturing with all manner grievous
torments. Lief would I kill him and console my heart of him; and, by
delivering the young Moslem from his mischief and restoring him to his
country and kith and kin and friends, fain would I lay up merit for the
world to come, by taking my wreak of him.[FN#45] This will be an
almsdeed from you and ye will reap the reward thereof from Almighty
Allah." "We hear and we obey Allah and thee, O our brother, O Hasan,"
replied they and binding chin-veils, armed themselves and slung on
their swords: after which they brought Hasan a steed of the best and
equipped him in panoply and weaponed him with goodly weapons.  Then
they all sallied out and found the Magian who had slaughtered and
skinned a camel, ill-using the young Moslem, and saying to him, "Sit
thee in this hide."  So Hasan came behind him, without his knowledge,
and cried out at him till he was dazed and amazed.  Then he came up to
him, saying, "Hold thy hand, O accursed! O enemy of Allah and foe of
the Moslems! O dog! O traitor! O thou that flame dost obey! O thou that
walkest in the wicked ones' ways, worshipping the fire and the light
and swearing by the shade and the heat!" Herewith the Magian turned and
seeing Hasan, thought to wheedle him and said to him, "O my son, how
diddest thou escape and who brought thee down to earth?" Hasan replied,
"He delivered me, who hath appointed the taking of thy life to be at my
hand, and I will torture thee even as thou torturedst me the whole way
long. O miscreant, O atheist,[FN#46] thou hast fallen into the twist
and the way thou hast missed; and neither mother shall avail thee nor
brother, nor friend nor solemn covenant shall assist thee; for thou
saidst, O accursed, Whoso betrayeth bread and salt, may Allah do
vengeance upon him! And thou hast broken the bond of bread and salt;
wherefore the Almighty hath thrown thee into my grasp, and far is thy
chance of escape from me."  Rejoined Bahram, "By Allah, O my son, O
Hasan, thou art dearer to me than my sprite and the light of mine
eyes!" But Hasan stepped up to him and hastily smote him between the
shoulders, that the sword issued gleaming from his throat-tendons and
Allah hurried his soul to the fire, and abiding-place dire.  Then Hasan
took the Magian's bag and opened it, then having taken out the
kettle-drum he struck it with the strap, whereupon up came the
dromedaries like lightning.  So he unbound the youth from his bonds and
setting him on one of the camels, loaded him another with victual and
water,[FN#47] saying, "Wend whither thou wilt." So he departed, after
Almighty Allah had thus delivered him from his strait at the hands of
Hasan.  When the damsels saw their brother slay the Magian they joyed
in him with exceeding joy and gat round him, marvelling at his valour
and prowess,[FN#48] and thanked him for his deed and gave him joy of
his safety, saying, "O Hasan thou hast done a deed, whereby thou hast
healed the burning of him that thirsteth for vengeance and pleased the
King of Omnipotence!"  Then they returned to the palace, and he abode
with them, eating and drinking and laughing and making merry; and
indeed his sojourn with them was joyous to him and he forgot his
mother;[FN#49] but while he led with them this goodly life one day,
behold, there arose from the further side of the desert a great cloud
of dust that darkened the welkin and made towards them.  When the
Princesses saw this, they said to him, "Rise, O Hasan, run to thy
chamber and conceal thyself; or an thou wilt, go down into the garden
and hide thyself among the trees and vines; but fear not, for no harm
shall befal thee." So he arose and entering his chamber, locked the
door upon himself, and lay lurking in the palace.  Presently the dust
opened out and showed beneath it a great conquering host, as it were a
surging sea, coming from the King, the father of the damsels. Now when
the troops reached the castle, the Princesses received them with all
honour and hospitably entertained them three days; after which they
questioned them of their case and tidings and they replied saying, "We
come from the King in quest of you."  They asked, "And what would the
King with us?"; and the officers answered, "One of the Kings maketh a
marriage festival, and your father would have you be present thereat
and take your pleasure therewith." The damsels enquired, "And how long
shall we be absent from our place?"; and they rejoined, "The time to
come and go, and to sojourn may be two months." So the Princesses arose
and going in to the palace sought Hasan, acquainted him with the case
and said to him, "Verily this place is thy place and our house is thy
house; so be of good cheer and keep thine eyes cool and clear and feel
nor grief nor fear, for none can come at thee here; but keep a good
heart and a glad mind, till we return to thee.  The keys of our
chambers we leave with thee; but, O our brother, we beseech thee, by
the bond of brotherhood, in very deed not to open such a door, for thou
hast no need thereto." Then they farewelled him and fared forth with
the troops, leaving Hasan alone in the palace.  It was not long before
his breast grew straitened and his patience shortened: solitude and
sadness were heavy on him and he sorrowed for his severance from them
with passing chagrin.  The palace for all its vastness, waxed small to
him and finding himself sad and solitary, he bethought him of the
damsels and their pleasant converse and recited these couplets,

"The wide plain is narrowed before these eyes * And the landscape
     troubles  this heart of mine.
Since my friends went forth, by the loss of them * Joy fled and
     these  eyelids rail floods of brine:
Sleep shunned these eyeballs for parting woe * And my mind is
     worn with  sore pain and pine:
Would I wot an Time shall rejoin our lots * And the joys of love
     with night-talk combine."

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

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that after the
departure of the damsels, Hasan sat in the palace sad and solitary and
his breast was straitened by severance.  He used to ride forth
a-hunting by himself in the wold and bring back the game and slaughter
it and eat thereof alone: but melancholy and disquiet redoubled on him,
by reason of his loneliness.  So he arose and went round about the
palace and explored its every part; he opened the Princesses'
apartments and found therein riches and treasures fit to ravish the
beholder's reason; but he delighted not in aught thereof, by reason of
their absence.  His heart was fired by thinking of the door they had
charged him not to approach or open on any account and he said in
himself, "My sister had never enjoined me not to open this door, except
there were behind it somewhat whereof she would have none to know; but,
by Allah, I will arise and open it and see what is within, though
within it were sudden death!" Then he took the key and, opening the
door,[FN#50] saw therein no treasure but he espied a vaulted and
winding staircase of Yamani onyx at the upper end of the chamber.  So
he mounted the stair, which brought him out upon the terrace- roof of
the palace, whence he looked down upon the gardens and vergiers, full
of trees and fruits and beasts and birds warbling praises of Allah, the
One, the All-powerful; and said in himself "This is that they forbade
to me."   He gazed upon these pleasaunces and saw beyond a surging sea,
dashing with clashing billows, and he ceased not to explore the palace
right and left, till he ended at a pavilion builded with alternate
courses, two bricks of gold and one of silver and jacinth and emerald
and supported by four columns.  And in the centre he saw a sitting-
room paved and lined with a mosaic of all manner precious stones such
as rubies and emeralds and balasses and other jewels of sorts; and in
its midst stood a basin[FN#51] brimful of water, over which was a
trellis-work of sandalwood and aloes-wood reticulated with rods of red
gold and wands of emerald and set with various kinds of jewels and fine
pearls, each sized as a pigeon's egg.  The trellis was covered with a
climbing vine, bearing grapes like rubies, and beside the basin stood a
throne of lign-aloes latticed with red gold, inlaid with great pearls
and comprising vari-coloured gems of every sort and precious minerals, 
each kind fronting each and symmetrically disposed. About it the birds
warbled with sweet tongues and various voices celebrating the praises
of Allah the Most High: brief, it was a palace such as nor Cćsar nor
Chosroës ever owned; but Hasan saw therein none of the creatures of
Allah, whereat he marvelled and said in himself, "I wonder to which of
the Kings this place pertaineth, or is it Many-Columned Iram whereof
they tell, for who among mortals can avail to the like of this?"   And
indeed he was amazed at the spectacle and sat down in the pavilion and
cast glances around him marvelling at the beauty of its ordinance and
at the lustre of the pearls and jewels and the curious works which
therein were, no less than at the gardens and orchards aforesaid and at
the birds that hymned the praises of Allah, the One, the Almighty; and
he abode pondering the traces of him whom the Most High had enabled to
rear that structure, for indeed He is muchel of might.[FN#52] And
presently, behold, he espied ten birds[FN#53] flying towards the
pavilion from the heart of the desert and knew that they were making
the palace and bound for the basin, to drink of its waters: so he hid
himself, for fear they should see him and take flight.  They lighted on
a great tree and a goodly and circled round about it; and he saw
amongst them a bird of marvel-beauty, the goodliest of them all, and
the nine stood around it and did it service; and Hasan marvelled to see
it peck them with its bill and lord it over them while they fled from
it.  He stood gazing at them from afar as they entered the pavilion and
perched on the couch; after which each bird rent open its neck-skin
with its claws and issued out of it; and lo! it was but a garment of
feathers, and there came forth therefrom ten virgins, maids whose
beauty shamed the brilliancy of the moon.  They all doffed their
clothes and plunging into the basin, washed and fell to playing and
sporting one with other; whilst the chief bird of them lifted up the
rest and ducked them down and they fled from her and dared not put
forth their hands to her.  When Hasan beheld her thus he took leave of
his right reason and his sense was enslaved, so he knew that the
Princesses had not forbidden him to open the door save because of this;
for he fell passionately in love with her, for what he saw of her
beauty and loveliness, symmetry and perfect grace, as she played and
sported and splashed the others with the water.  He stood looking upon
them whilst they saw him not, with eye gazing and heart burning and
soul[FN#54] to evil prompting; and he sighed to be with them and wept
for longing, because of the beauty and loveliness of the chief damsel. 
His mind was amazed at her charms and his heart taken in the net of her
love; lowe was loosed in his heart for her sake and there waxed on him
a flame, whose sparks might not be quenched, and desire, whose signs
might not be hidden.  Presently, they came up out of that basin, whilst
Hasan marvelled at their beauty and loveliness and the tokens of inner
gifts in the elegance of their movements. Then he cast a glance at the
chief damsel who stood mother- naked and there was manifest to him what
was between her thighs a goodly rounded dome on pillars borne, like a
bowl of silver or crystal, which recalled to him the saying of the

"When I took up her shift and discovered the terrace-roof of her
     kaze, I found it as strait as my humour or eke my worldly
So I thrust it, incontinent, in, halfway, and she heaved a sigh.
     'For what dost thou sigh?' quoth I. 'For the rest of it
     sure,' she says."

Then coming out of the water they all put on their dresses and
ornaments, and the chief maiden donned a green dress,[FN#56] wherein
she surpassed for loveliness all the fair ones of the world and the
lustre of her face outshone the resplendent full moons: she excelled
the branches with the grace of her bending gait and confounded the wit
with apprehension of disdain; and indeed she was as saith the

"A maiden 'twas, the dresser's art had decked with cunning
The sun thou 'd'st say had robbed her cheek and shone with
     borrowed light.
She came to us apparelled fair in under vest of green,
Like as the ripe pomegranate hides beneath its leafy screen;
And when we asked her what might be the name of what she wore,
She answered in a quaint reply that double meaning bore:
The desert's heart we penetrate in such apparel dressed,
And Pierce-heart therefore is the name by which we call the

—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighty-seventh Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan
saw the damsels issue forth the basin, the chief maiden robbed his
reason with her beauty and loveliness compelling him to recite the
couplets forequoted.  And after dressing they sat talking and laughing,
whilst he stood gazing on them, drowned in the sea of his love, burning
in the flames of passion and wandering in the Wady of his melancholy
thought.  And he said to himself, "By Allah, my sister forbade me not
to open the door, but for cause of these maidens and for fear lest I
should fall in love with one of them!  How, O Hasan shalt thou woo and
win them? How bring down a bird flying in the vasty firmament?  By
Allah thou hast cast thyself into a bottomless sea and snared thyself
in a net whence there is no escape!  I shall die desolate and none
shall wot of my death."  And he continued to gaze on the charms of the
chief damsel, who was the lovliest creature Allah had made in her day,
and indeed she outdid in beauty all human beings. She had a mouth
magical as Solomon's seal and hair blacker than the night of
estrangement to the love-despairing man; her brow was bright as the
crescent moon of the Feast of Ramazán[FN#58] and her eyes were like
eyes wherewith gazelles scan; she had a polished nose straight as a
cane and cheeks like blood-red anemones of Nu'uman, lips like coralline
and teeth like strung pearls in carcanets of gold virgin to man, and a
neck like an ingot of silver, above a shape like a wand of Bán: her
middle was full of folds, a dimpled plain such as enforceth the
distracted lover to magnify Allah and extol His might and main, and her
navel[FN#59] an ounce of musk, sweetest of savour could contain: she
had thighs great and plump, like marble columns twain or bolsters
stuffed with down from ostrich ta'en, and between them a somewhat, as
it were a hummock great of span or a hare with ears back lain while
terrace-roof and pilasters completed the plan; and indeed she surpassed
the bough of the myrobalan with her beauty and symmetry, and the Indian
rattan, for she was even as saith of them the poet whom love did

"Her lip-dews rival honey-sweets, that sweet virginity; *
     Keener than Hindi scymitar the glance she casts at thee:
She shames the bending bough of Bán with graceful movement slow *
     And as she smiles her teeth appear with leven's brilliancy:
When I compared with rose a-bloom the tintage of her cheeks, *
     She laughed in scorn and cried, 'Whoso compares with rosery
My hue and breasts, granados terms, is there no shame in him? *
     How should pomegranates bear on bough such fruit in form or
Now by my beauty and mine eyes and heart and eke by Heaven *
     Of favours mine and by the Hell of my unclemency,
They say 'She is a garden-rose in very pride of bloom'; *
     And yet no rose can ape my cheek nor branch my symmetry!
If any garden own a thing which unto me is like, *
     What then is that he comes to crave of me and only me?"'

They ceased not to laugh and play, whilst Hasan stood still a-watching
them, forgetting meat and drink, till near the hour of mid-afternoon
prayer, when the beauty, the chief damsel, said to her mates, "O Kings'
daughters, it waxeth late and our land is afar and we are weary of this
stead.  Come, therefore, let us depart to our own place." So they all
arose and donned their feather vests, and becoming birds as they were
before, flew away all together, with the chief lady in their midst. 
Then, Hasan, despairing of their return, would have arisen and gone
down into the palace  but could not move or even stand; wherefore the
tears ran down his cheeks and passion was sore on him and he recited
these couplets,

"May God deny me boon of troth if I * After your absence sweets
     of slumber know:
Yea; since that sev'rance never close mine eyes, * Nor rest
     repose me since departed you!
'Twould seem as though you saw me in your sleep; * Would Heaven
     the dreams of sleep were real-true!
Indeed I dote on sleep though needed not, * For sleep may bring
     me that dear form to view."

Then Hasan walked on, little by little, heeding not the way he went,
till he reached the foot of the stairs, whence he dragged himself to
his own chamber; then he entered and shutting the door, lay sick eating
not nor drinking and drowned in the sea of his solitude.  He spent the
night thus, weeping and bemoaning himself, till the morning, and when
it morrowed he repeated these couplets,

"The birds took flight at eve and winged their way; * And sinless
     he who died of Love's death-blow.
I'll keep my love-tale secret while I can * But, an desire
     prevail, its needs must show:
Night brought me nightly vision, bright as dawn; * While nights
     of my desire lack morning-glow.
I mourn for them[FN#61] while they heart-freest sleep * And winds
     of love on me their plaything blow:
Free I bestow my tears, my wealth, my heart * My wit, my sprite:Â
     most gain who most bestow!
The worst of woes and banes is enmity * Beautiful maidens deal us
     to our woe.
Favour they say's forbidden to the fair * And shedding lovers'
     blood their laws allow;
That naught can love-sicks do but lavish soul, * And stake in
     love-play life on single throw:[FN#62]
I cry in longing ardour for my love: * Lover can only weep and
     wail Love-lowe."

When the sun rose he opened the door, went forth of the chamber and
mounted to the stead where he was before: then he sat down facing the
pavilion and awaited the return of the birds till nightfall; but they
returned not; wherefore he wept till he fell to the ground in a
fainting-fit. When he came to after his swoon, he dragged himself down
the stairs to his chamber; and indeed, the darkness was come and
straitened upon him was the whole world and he ceased not to weep and
wail himself through the livelong night, till the day broke and the sun
rained over hill and dale its rays serene.  He ate not nor drank nor
slept, nor was there any rest for him; but by day he was distracted and
by night distressed, with sleeplessness delirious and drunken with
melancholy thought and excess of love-longing.  And he repeated the
verses of the love-distraught poet,

"O thou who shamest sun in morning sheen * The branch
     confounding, yet with nescience blest;
Would Heaven I wot an Time shall bring return * And quench the
     fires which flame unmanifest,—
Bring us together in a close embrace, * Thy cheek upon my cheek,
     thy breast abreast!
Who saith, In Love dwells sweetness? when in Love * Are bitterer
     days than Aloës[FN#63] bitterest."

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

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighty-eighth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan the
goldsmith felt love redouble upon him, he recited those lines; and, as
he abode thus in the stress of his love-distraction, alone and finding
none to cheer him with company, behold, there arose a dust-cloud from
the desert, wherefore he ran down and hid himself knowing that the
Princesses who owned the castle had returned.  Before long, the troops
halted and dismounted round the palace and the seven damsels alighted
and entering, put off their arms and armour of war. As for the
youngest, she stayed not to doff her weapons and gear, but went
straight to Hasan's chamber, where finding him not, she sought for him,
till she lighted on him in one of the sleeping closets hidden, feeble
and thin, with shrunken body and wasted bones and indeed his colour was
changed and his eyes sunken in his face for lack of food and drink and
for much weeping, by reason of his love and longing for the young lady.
 When she saw him in this plight, she was confounded and lost her wits;
but presently she questioned him of his case and what had befallen him,
saying, "Tell me what aileth thee, O my brother, that I may contrive to
do away thine affliction, and I will be thy ransom!"[FN#64] Whereupon
he wept with sore weeping and by way of reply he began reciting,

"Lover, when parted from the thing he loves, * Has naught save
     weary woe and bane to bear.
Inside is sickness, outside living lowe, * His first is fancy and
     his last despair."

When his sister heard this, she marvelled at his eloquence and loquent
speech and his readiness at answering her in verse and said to him, "O
my brother, when didst thou fall into this thy case and what hath
betided thee, that I find thee speaking in song and shedding tears that
throng?  Allah upon thee, O my brother, and by the honest love which is
between us, tell me what aileth thee and discover to me thy secret, nor
conceal from me aught of that which hath befallen thee in our absence;
for my breast is straitened and my life is troubled because of thee."
He sighed and railed tears like rain, after which he said, "I fear, O
my sister, if I tell thee, that thou wilt not aid me to win my wish but
wilt leave me to die wretchedly in mine anguish." She replied, "No, by
Allah, O my brother, I will not abandon thee, though it cost me my
life!"  So he told her all that had befallen him, and that the cause of
his distress and affliction was the passion he had conceived for the
young lady whom he had seen when he opened the forbidden door; and how
he had not tasted meat nor drink for ten days past.  Then he wept with
sore weeping and recited these couplets,

"Restore my heart as 'twas within my breast, * Let mine eyes
     sleep again, then fly fro' me.
Deem ye the nights have had the might to change * Love's vow?
     Who changeth may he never be!"

His sister wept for his weeping and was moved to ruth for his case and
pitied his strangerhood; so she said to him, "O my brother, be of good
cheer and keep thine eyes cool and clear, for I will venture being and
risk existence to content thee and devise thee a device wherewith,
though it cost me my dear life and all I hold dear, thou mayst get
possession of her and accomplish thy desire, if such be the will of
Allah Almighty. But I charge thee, O my brother, keep the matter secret
from my sisterhood and discover not thy case to any one of them, lest
my life be lost with thy life.  An they question thee of opening the
forbidden door, reply to them, 'I opened it not; no, never; but I was
troubled at heart for your absence and by my loneliness here and
yearning for you.'"[FN#65] And he answered, "Yes: this is the right
rede."  So he kissed her head and his heart was comforted and his bosom
broadened.  He had been nigh upon death for excess of affright, for he
had gone in fear of her by reason of his having opened the door; but
now his life and soul returned to him. Then he sought of her somewhat
of food and after serving it she left him, and went in to her sisters,
weeping and mourning for him.  They questioned her of her case and she
told them how she was heavy at heart for her brother, because he was
sick and for ten days no food had found way into his stomach.  So they
asked the cause of his sickness and she answered, "The reason was our
severance from him and our leaving him desolate; for these days we have
been absent from him were longer to him than a thousand years and scant
blame to him, seeing he is a stranger, and solitary and we left him
alone, with none to company with him or hearten his heart; more by
token that he is but a youth and may be he called to mind his family
and his mother, who is a woman in years, and bethought him that she
weepeth for him all whiles of the day and watches of the night, ever
mourning his loss; and we used to solace him with our society and
divert him from thinking of her." When her sisters heard these words
they wept in the stress of their distress for him and said,
"Wa'lláhi—'fore Allah, he is not to blame!" Then they went out to the
army and dismissed it, after which they went into Hasan and saluted him
with the salam.  When they saw his charms changed with yellow colour
and shrunken body, they wept for very pity and sat by his side and
comforted him and cheered him with converse, relating to him all they
had seen by the way of wonders and rarities and what had befallen the
bridegroom with the bride. They abode with him thus a whole month,
tendering him and caressing him with words sweeter than syrup; but
every day sickness was added to his sickness, which when they saw, they
bewept him with sore weeping, and the youngest wept even more than the
rest.  At the end of this time, the Princesses having made up their
minds to ride forth a-hunting and a-birding invited their sister to
accompany them, but she said, "By Allah, O my sisters, I cannot go
forth with you whilst my brother is in this plight, nor indeed till he
be restored to health and there cease from him that which is with him
of affliction.  Rather will I sit with him and comfort him." They
thanked her for her kindness and said to her, "Allah will requite thee
all thou dost with this stranger." Then they left her with him in the
palace and rode forth taking with them twenty days' victual;—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighty-ninth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Princesses
mounted and rode forth a-hunting and a-birding, after leaving in the
palace their youngest sister sitting by Hasan's side; and as soon as
the damsel knew that they had covered a long distance from home, she
went in to him and said, "O my brother, come, show me the place where
thou sawest the maidens." He rejoiced in her words, making sure of
winning his wish, and replied, "Bismillah! On my head!" Then he essayed
to rise and show her the place, but could not walk; so she took him up
in her arms, holding him to her bosom between her breasts; and, opening
the staircase-door, carried him to the top of the palace, and he showed
her the pavilion where he had seen the girls and the basin of water,
wherein they had bathed.  Then she said to him, "Set forth to me, O my
brother, their case and how they came."  So he described to her whatso
he had seen of them and especially the girl of whom he was enamoured;
but hearing these words she knew her and her cheeks paled and her case
changed. Quoth he, "O my sister, what aileth thee to wax wan and be
troubled?"; and quoth she, "O my brother, know thou that this young
lady is the daughter of a Sovran of the Jann, of one of the most
puissant of their Kings, and her father had dominion over men and Jinn
and wizards and Cohens and tribal chiefs and guards and countries and
cities and islands galore and hath immense wealth in store.  Our father
is a Viceroy and one of his vassals and none can avail against him, for
the multitude of his many and the extent of his empire and the muchness
of his monies.  He hath assigned to his offspring, the daughters thou
sawest, a tract of country, a whole year's journey in length and
breadth, a region girt about with a great river and a deep; and thereto
none may attain, nor man nor Jann.  He hath an army of women, smiters
with swords and lungers with lances, five-and-twenty thousand in
number, each of whom, whenas she mounteth steed and donneth
battle-gear, eveneth a thousand knights of the bravest.  Moreover, he
hath seven daughters, who in valour and prowess equal and even excel
their sisters,[FN#66] and he hath made the eldest of them, the damsel
whom thou sawest,[FN#67] queen over the country aforesaid and who is
the wisest of her sisters and in valour and horsemanship and craft and
skill and magic excels all the folk of her dominions. The girls who
companied with her are the ladies of her court and guards and grandees
of her empire, and the plumed skins wherewith they fly are the
handiwork of enchanters of the Jann.  Now an thou wouldst get
possession of this queen and wed this jewel seld-seen and enjoy her
beauty and loveliness and grace, do thou pay heed to my words and keep
them in thy memory. They resort to this place on the first day of every
month; and thou must take seat here and watch for them; and when thou
seest them coming hide thee near the pavilion sitting where thou mayst
see them, without being seen of them, and beware, again beware lest
thou show thyself, or we shall all lose our lives. When they doff their
dress note which is the feather-suit of her whom thou lovest and take
it, and it only, for this it is that carrieth her to her country, and
when thou hast mastered it, thou hast mastered her.  And beware lest
she wile thee, saying, 'O thou who hast robbed my raiment, restore it
to me, because here am I in thine hands and at thy mercy!' For, an thou
give it her, she will kill thee and break down over us palace and
pavilion and slay our sire: know, then, thy case and how thou shalt
act.  When her companions see that her feather-suit is stolen, they
will take flight and leave her to thee, and beware lest thou show
thyself to them, but wait till they have flown away and she despaireth
of them: whereupon do thou go in to her and hale her by the hair of her
head[FN#68] and drag her to thee; which being done, she will be at thy
mercy.  And I rede thee discover not to her that thou hast taken the
feather-suit, but keep it with care; for, so long as thou hast it in
hold, she is thy prisoner and in thy power, seeing that she cannot fly
to her country save with it.  And lastly carry her down to thy chamber
where she will be thine." When Hasan heard her words his heart became
at ease, his trouble ceased and affliction left him; so he rose to his
feet and kissing his sister's head, went down from the terrace with her
into the palace, where they slept that night.  He medicined himself
till morning morrowed; and when the sun rose, he sprang up and opened
the staircase-door and ascending to the flat roof sat there till
supper-tide when his sister brought him up somewhat of meat and drink
and a change of clothes and he slept. And thus they continued doing,
day by day until the end of the month. When he saw the new moon, he
rejoiced and began to watch for the birds, and while he was thus,
behold, up they came, like lightning. As  soon as he espied them, he
hid himself where he could watch them, unwatched by them, and they
lighted down one and all of them, and putting off their clothes,
descended into the basin. All this took place near the stead where
Hasan lay concealed, and as soon as he caught sight of the girl he
loved, he arose and crept under cover, little by little, towards the
dresses, and Allah veiled him so that none marked his approach for they
were laughing and playing with one another, till he laid hand on the
dress.  Now when they had made an end of their diversion, they came
forth of the basin and each of them slipped on her feather-suit.  But
the damsel he loved sought for her plumage that she might put it on,
but found it not; whereupon she shrieked and beat her cheeks and rent
her raiment.  Her sisterhood[FN#69] came to her and asked what ailed
her, and she told them that her feather-suit was missing; wherefore
they wept and shrieked and buffeted their faces: and they were
confounded, wotting not the cause of this, and knew not what to do.
Presently the night overtook them and they feared to abide with her
lest that which had befallen her should befal them also; so they
farewelled her and flying away left her alone upon the terrace-roof of
the palace, by the pavilion basin.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninetieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan had
carried off the girl's plumery, she sought it but found it not and her
sisterhood flew away leaving her alone. When they were out of sight,
Hasan gave ear to her and heard her say, "O who hast taken my dress and
stripped me, I beseech thee to restore it to me and cover my shame, so
may Allah never make thee taste of my tribulation!" But when Hasan
heard her speak thus, with speech sweeter than syrup, his love for her
redoubled, passion got the mastery of his reason and he had not
patience to endure from her. So springing up from his hiding-place, he
rushed upon her and laying hold of her by the hair dragged her to him
and carried her down to the basement of the palace and set her in his
own chamber, where he threw over her a silken cloak[FN#70] and left her
weeping and biting her hands.  Then he shut the door upon her and going
to his sister, informed her how he had made prize of his lover and
carried her to his sleeping-closet, "And there," quoth he, "she is now
sitting, weeping and biting her hands." When his sister heard this, she
rose forthright and betook herself to the chamber, where she found the
captive weeping and mourning.  So she kissed ground before her and
saluted her with the salam and the young lady said to her, "O King's
daughter, do folk like you do such foul deed with the daughters of
Kings?  Thou knowest that my father is a mighty Sovran and that all the
liege lords of the Jinn stand in awe of him and fear his majesty: for
that there are with him magicians and sages and Cohens and Satans and
Marids, such as none may cope withal, and under his hand are folk whose
number none knoweth save Allah.  How then doth it become you, O
daughters of Kings, to harbour mortal men with you and disclose to them
our case and yours?  Else how should this man, a stranger, come at us?"
Hasan's sister made reply, "O King's daughter, in very sooth this human
is perfect in nobleness and purposeth thee no villainy; but he loveth
thee, and women were not made save for men.  Did he not love thee, he
had not fallen sick for thy sake and well-nigh given up the ghost for
desire of thee." And she told her the whole tale how Hasan had seen her
bathing in the basin with her attendants, and fallen in love with her,
and none had pleased him but she, for the rest were all her handmaids,
and none had availed to put forth a hand to her. When the Princess
heard this, she despaired of deliverance and presently Hasan's sister
went forth and brought her a costly dress, wherein she robed her. Then
she set before her somewhat of meat and drink and ate with her and
heartened her heart and soothed her sorrows.  And she ceased not to
speak her fair with soft and pleasant words, saying, "Have pity on him
who saw thee once and became as one slain by thy love;" and continued
to console her and caress her, quoting fair says and pleasant
instances. But she wept till daybreak, when her trouble subsided and
she left shedding tears, knowing that she had fallen into the net and
that there was no deliverance for her.  Then said she to Hasan's
sister, "O King's daughter, with this my strangerhood and severance
from my country and sisterhood which Allah wrote upon my brow, patience
becometh me to support what my Lord hath foreordained."  Therewith the
youngest Princess assigned her a chamber in the palace, than which
there was none goodlier and ceased not to sit with her and console her
and solace her heart, till she was satisfied with her lot and her bosom
was broadened and she laughed and there ceased from her what trouble
and oppression possessed her, by reason of her separation from her
people and country and sisterhood and parents.  Thereupon Hasan's
sister repaired to him, and said, "Arise, go in to her in her chamber
and kiss her hands and feet."[FN#71]  So he went in to her and did this
and bussed her between the eyes, saying, "O Princess of fair ones and
life of sprites and beholder's delight, be easy of heart, for I took
thee only that I might be thy bondsman till the Day of Doom, and this
my sister will be thy servant; for I, O my lady, desire naught but to
take thee to wife, after the law of Allah and the practice of His
Apostle, and whenas thou wilt, I will journey with thee to my country
and carry thee to Baghdad-city and abide with thee there: moreover, I
will buy thee handmaidens and negro chattels; and I have a mother, of
the best of women, who will do thee service.  There is no goodlier land
than our land; everything therein is better than elsewhere and its folk
are a pleasant people and bright of face."  Now as he bespake her thus
and strave to comfort her, what while she answered him not a syllable,
lo! there came a knocking at the palace-gate.  So Hasan went out to see
who was at the door and found there the six Princesses, who had
returned from hunting and birding, whereat he rejoiced and went to meet
them and welcomed them.  They wished him safety and health and he
wished them the like; after which they dismounted and going each to her
chamber doffed their soiled clothes and donned fine linen.  Then they
came forth and demanded the game, for they had taken a store of
gazelles and wild cows, hares and lions, hyaenas, and others; so their
suite brought out some thereof for butchering, keeping the rest by them
in the palace, and Hasan girt himself and fell to slaughtering for them
in due form,[FN#72] whilst they sported and made merry, joying with
great joy to see him standing amongst them hale and hearty once more. 
When they had made an end of slaughtering, they sat down and addressed
themselves to get ready somewhat for breaking their fast, and Hasan,
coming up to the eldest Princess, kissed her head and on like wise did
he with the rest, one after other. Whereupon said they to him, "Indeed,
thou humblest thyself to us passing measure, O our brother, and we
marvel at the excess of the affection thou showest us.  But Allah
forfend that thou shouldst do this thing, which it behoveth us rather
to do with thee, seeing thou art a man and therefor worthier than we,
who are of the Jinn."[FN#73] Thereupon his eyes brimmed with tears and
he wept sore; so they said to him, "What causeth thee to weep?  Indeed,
thou troublest our pleasant lives with thy weeping this day. 'Twould
seem thou longest after thy mother and native land.  An things be so,
we will equip thee and carry thee to thy home and thy friends."  He
replied, "By Allah, I desire not to part from you!" Then they asked,
"Which of us hath vexed thee, that thou art thus troubled?"  But he was
ashamed to say, "Naught troubleth me save love of a damsel," lest they
should deny and disavow him: so he was silent and would tell them
nothing of his case. Then his sister came forward and said to them, "He
hath caught a bird from the air and would have you help him to tame
her." Whereupon they all turned to him and cried, "We are at thy
service every one of us and whatsoever thou seekest that will we do:
but tell us thy tale and conceal from us naught of thy case." So he
said to his sister, "Do thou tell them, for I am ashamed before them
nor can I face them with these words."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninety-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Hasan said to his
sister, "Do thou tell them my tale, for before them I stand abashed nor
can I face them with these words."  So she said to them, "O my sisters,
when we went away and left alone this unhappy one, the palace was
straitened upon him and he feared lest some one should come in to him,
for ye know that the sons of Adam are light of wits.  So, he opened the
door of the staircase leading to the roof, of his loneliness and
trouble, and sat there, looking upon the Wady and watching the gate, in
his fear lest any should come thither.  One day, as he sat thus,
suddenly he saw ten birds approach him, making for the palace, and they
lighted down on the brink of the basin which is in the
pavilion-terrace.  He watched these birds and saw, amongst them, one
goodlier than the rest, which pecked the others and flouted them,
whilst none of them dared put out a claw to it. Presently, they set
their nails to their neck-collars and, rending their feather-suits,
came forth therefrom and became damsels, each and every, like the moon
on fullest night.  Then they doffed their dress and plunging into the
water, fell to playing with one another, whilst the chief damsel ducked
the others, who dared not lay a finger on her and she was fairest of
favour and most famous of form and most feateous of finery.  They
ceased not to be in this case till near the hour of mid-afternoon
prayer, when they came forth of the basin and, donning their
feather-shifts, flew away home.  Thereupon he waxed distracted, with a
heart afire for love of the chief damsel and repenting him that he had
not stolen her plumery.  Wherefore he fell sick and abode on the
palace-roof expecting her return and abstaining from meat and drink and
sleep, and he ceased not to be so till the new moon showed, when
behold, they again made their appearance according to custom and
doffing their dresses went down into the basin.  So he stole the chief
damsel's feather-suit, knowing that she could not fly save therewith,
hiding himself carefully lest they sight him and slay him.  Then he
waited till the rest had flown away, when he arose and seizing the
damsel, carried her down from the terrace into the castle." Her sisters
asked, "Where is she?"; and she answered, "She is with him in such a
chamber." Quoth they, "Describe her to us, O our sister:" so quoth she,
"She is fairer than the moon on the night of fullness and her face is
sheenier than the sun; the dew of her lips is sweeter than honey and
her shape is straighter and slenderer than the cane; one with eyes
black as night and brow flower-white; a bosom jewel-bright, breasts
like pomegranates twain and cheeks like apples twain, a waist with
dimples overlain, a navel like a casket of ivory full of musk in grain,
and legs like columns of alabastrine vein.  She ravisheth all hearts
with Nature-kohl'd eyne, and a waist slender-fine and hips of heaviest
design and speech that heals all pain and pine: she is goodly of shape
and sweet of smile, as she were the moon in fullest sheen and shine." 
When the Princesses heard these praises, they turned to Hasan and said
to him, "Show her to us."  So he arose with them, all love-distraught,
and carrying them to the chamber wherein was the captive damsel, opened
the door and entered, preceding the seven Princesses.  Now when they
saw her and noted her loveliness, they kissed the ground between her
hands, marvelling at the fairness of her favour and the significance
which showed her inner gifts, and said to her, "By Allah, O daughter of
the Sovran Supreme, this is indeed a mighty matter: and haddest thou
heard tell of this mortal among women thou haddest marvelled at him all
thy days.  Indeed, he loveth thee with passionate love; yet, O King's
daughter, he seeketh not lewdness, but desireth thee only in the way of
lawful wedlock. Had we known that maids can do without men, we had
impeached him from his intent, albeit he sent thee no messenger, but
came to thee in person; and he telleth us he hath burnt the feather
dress; else had we taken it from him." Then one of them agreed with the
Princess and becoming her deputy in the matter of the wedding contract,
performed the marriage ceremony between them, whilst Hasan clapped
palms with her, laying his hand in hers, and she wedded him to the
damsel by consent; after which they celebrated her bridal feast, as
beseemeth Kings' daughters, and brought Hasan in to her.  So he rose
and rent the veil and oped the gate and pierced the forge[FN#74] and
brake the seal, whereupon affection for her waxed in him and he
redoubled in love and longing for her.  Then, since he had gotten that
which he sought, he gave himself joy and improvised these couplets,

"Thy shape's temptation, eyes as Houri's fain * And sheddeth
     Beauty's sheen[FN#75] that radiance rare:
My glance portrayed thy glorious portraiture: * Rubies one-half
     and gems the third part were:
Musk made a fifth: a sixth was ambergris * The sixth a pearl but
     pearl without compare.
Eve never bare a daughter evening thee * Nor breathes thy like in
     Khuld's[FN#76] celestial air.
An thou would torture me 'tis wont of Love * And if thou pardon
     'tis thy choice I swear:
Then, O world bright'ner and O end of wish! * Loss of thy charms
     who could in patience bear?"

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

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninety-second Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan
went in unto the King's daughter and did away her maidenhead, he
enjoyed her with exceeding joy and affection for her waxed in him and
he redoubled in love-longing for her; so he recited the lines
aforesaid.  Now the Princesses were standing at the door and when they
heard his verses, they said to her, "O King's daughter, hearest thou
the words of this mortal?  How canst thou blame us, seeing that he
maketh poetry for love of thee and indeed he hath so done a thousand
times."[FN#77]  When she heard this she rejoiced and was glad and felt
happy and Hasan abode with her forty[FN#78] days in all solace and
delight, joyance and happiest plight, whilst the damsels renewed
festivities for him every day and overwhelmed him with bounty and
presents and rarities; and the King's daughter became reconciled to her
sojourn amongst them and forgot her kith and kin.  At the end of the
forty days, Hasan saw in a dream, one night, his mother mourning for
him and indeed her bones were wasted and her body had waxed shrunken
and her complexion had yellowed and her favour had changed the while he
was in excellent case.  When she saw him in this state, she said to
him, "O my son, O Hasan, how is it that thou livest thy worldly life at
thine ease and forgettest me?  Look at my plight since thy loss!  I do
not forget thee, nor will my tongue cease to name thy name till I die;
and I have made thee a tomb in my house, that I may never forget thee. 
Would Heaven I knew[FN#79] if I shall live, O my son, to see thee by my
side and if we shall ever again foregather as we were."  Thereupon
Hasan awoke from sleep, weeping and wailing, the tears railed down his
cheeks like rain and he became mournful and melancholy; his tears dried
not nor did sleep visit him, but he had no rest, and no patience was
left to him.  When he arose, the Princesses came in to him and gave him
good-morrow and made merry with him as was their wont; but he paid no
heed to them; so they asked his wife concerning his case and she said,
"I ken not."  Quoth they, "Question him of his condition."  So she went
up to him and said, "What aileth thee, O my lord?" Whereupon he moaned
and groaned and told her what he had seen in his dream and repeated
these two couplets,

"Indeed afflicted sore are we and all distraught, * Seeking for
     union; yet we find no way:
And Love's calamities upon us grow * And Love though light with
     heaviest weight doth weigh."

His wife repeated to the Princesses what he said and they, hearing the
verses, had pity on him and said to him, "In Allah's name, do as thou
wilt, for we may not hinder thee from visiting thy mother; nay, we will
help thee to thy wish by what means we may.  But it behoveth that thou
desert us not, but visit us, though it be only once a year." And he
answered, "To hear is to obey: be your behest on my head and eyes!"
Then they arose forthright and making him ready victual for the voyage,
equipped the bride for him with raiment and ornaments and everything of
price, such as defy description, and they bestowed on him gifts and
presents which pens of ready writers lack power to set forth. Then they
beat the magical kettle-drum and up came the dromedaries from all
sides. They chose of them such as could carry all the gear they had
prepared; amongst the rest five-and-twenty chests of gold and fifty of
silver; and, mounting Hasan and his bride on others, rode with them
three days, wherein they accomplished a march of three months.  Then
they bade them farewell and addressed themselves to return; whereupon
his sister, the youngest damsel, threw herself on Hasan's neck and wept
till she fainted. When she came to herself, she repeated these two

"Ne'er dawn the severance-day on any wise * That robs of sleep
     these heavy-lidded eyes.
From us and thee it hath fair union torn * It wastes our force
     and makes our forms its prize."

Her verses finished she farewelled him, straitly charging him, whenas
he should have come to his native land and have foregathered with his
mother and set his heart at ease, to fail not of visiting her once in
every six months and saying, "If aught grieve thee or thou fear aught
of vexation, beat the Magian's kettle-drum, whereupon the dromedaries
shall come to thee; and do thou mount and return to us and persist not
in staying away."  He swore thus to do and conjured them to go home. So
they returned to the palace, mourning for their separation from him,
especially the youngest, with whom no rest would stay nor would
Patience her call obey, but she wept night and day. Thus it was with
them; but as regards Hasan and his wife, they fared on by day and night
over plain and desert site and valley and stony heights through
noon-tide glare and dawn's soft light; and Allah decreed them safety,
so that they reached Bassorah-city without hindrance and made their
camels kneel at the door of his house.  Hasan then dismissed the
dromedaries and, going up to the door to open it, heard his mother
weeping and in a faint strain, from a heart worn with parting-pain and
on fire with consuming bane, reciting these couplets,

"How shall he taste of sleep who lacks repose * Who wakes a-night
     when all in slumber wone?
He ownčd wealth and family and fame * Yet fared from house and
     home an exile lone:
Live coal beneath his[FN#80] ribs he bears for bane, * And mighty
     longing, mightier ne'er was known:
Passion hath seized him, Passion mastered him; * Yet is he
     constant while he maketh moan:
His case for Love proclaimeth aye that he, * (As prove his tears)
     is  wretched, woebegone."

When Hasan heard his mother weeping and wailing he wept also and
knocked at the door a loud knock.  Quoth she, "Who is at the door?";
and quoth he, "Open!" Whereupon she opened the door and knowing him at
first sight fell down in a fainting fit; but he ceased not to tend her
till she came to herself, when he embraced her and she embraced him and
kissed him, whilst his wife looked on mother and son.  Then he carried
his goods and gear into the house, whilst his mother, for that her
heart was comforted and Allah had reunited her with her son versified
with these couplets,

"Fortune had ruth upon my plight * Pitied my long long bane and
Gave me what I would liefest sight; * And set me free from all
So pardon I the sin that sin * nčd she in days evanisht quite;
E'en to the sin she sinned when she * Bleached my hair-parting
     silvern white."

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

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninety-third Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Hasan with his
mother then sat talking and she asked him, "How faredst thou, O my son,
with the Persian?" whereto he answered, "O my mother, he was no
Persian, but a Magian, who worshipped the fire, not the All-powerful
Sire."  Then he told her how he dealt with him, in that he had
journeyed with him to the Mountain of Clouds and sewed him up in the
camel's skin, and how the vultures had taken him up and set him down on
the summit and what he had seen there of dead folk, whom the Magian had
deluded and left to die on the crest after they had done his desire.
And he told her how he had cast himself from the mountain-top into the
sea and Allah the Most High had preserved him and brought him to the
palace of the seven Princesses and how the youngest of them had taken
him to brother and he had sojourned with them till the Almighty brought
the Magian to the place where he was and he slew him. Moreover, he told
her of his passion for the King's daughter and how he had made prize of
her and of his seeing her[FN#81] in sleep and all else that had
befallen him up to the time when Allah vouchsafed them reunion.  She
wondered at his story and praised the Lord who had restored him to her
in health and safety.  Then she arose and examined the baggage and
loads and questioned him of them.  So he told her what was in them,
whereat she joyed with exceeding joy. Then she went up to the King's
daughter, to talk with her and bear her company; but, when her eyes
fell on her, her wits were confounded at her brilliancy and she
rejoiced and marvelled at her beauty and loveliness and symmetry and
perfect grace: and she sat down beside her, cheering her and comforting
her heart while she never ceased to repeat "Alhamdolillah, O my son,
for thy return to me safe and sound!" Next morning early she went down
into the market and bought mighty fine furniture and ten suits of the
richest raiment in the city, and clad the young wife and adorned her
with everything seemly.  Then said she to Hasan, "O my son, we cannot
tarry in this town with all this wealth; for thou knowest that we are
poor folk and the people will suspect us of practising alchemy.  So
come, let us depart to Baghdad, the House[FN#82] of Peace, where we may
dwell in the Caliph's Sanctuary, and thou shalt sit in a shop to buy
and sell, in the fear of Allah (to whom belong Might and Majesty!) and
He shall open to thee the door of blessings with this wealth." Hasan
approved her counsel and going forth straightway, sold the house and
summoned the dromedaries, which he loaded with all his goods and gear,
together with his mother and wife.  Then he went down to the Tigris,
where he hired him a craft to carry them to Baghdad and embarked
therein all his possessions and his mother and wife. They sailed up the
river with a fair wind for ten days till they drew in sight of Baghdad,
at which they all rejoiced, and the ship landed them in the city, where
without stay or delay Hasan hired a storehouse in one of the
caravanserais and transported his goods thither.  He lodged that night
in the Khan and on the morrow, he changed his clothes and going down
into the city, enquired for a broker.  The folk directed him to one,
and when the broker saw him, he asked him what he lacked.  Quoth he, "I
want a house, a handsome one and a spacious." So the broker showed him
the houses at his disposal and he chose one that belonged to one of the
Wazirs and buying it of him for an hundred thousand golden dinars, gave
him the price. Then he returned to his caravanserai and removed all his
goods and monies to the house; after which he went down to the market
and bought all the mansion needed of vessels and carpets and other
household stuff, besides servants and eunuchs, including a little black
boy for the house.  He abode with his wife in all solace and delight of
life three years, during which time he was vouchsafed by her two sons,
one of whom he named Násir and the other Mansúr: but, at the end of
this time he bethought him of his sisters, the Princesses, and called
to mind all their goodness to him and how they had helped him to his
desire.  So he longed after them and going out to the marketstreets of
the city, bought trinkets and costly stuffs and fruit-confections, such
as they had never seen or known. His mother asked him the reason of his
buying these rarities and he answered, "I purpose to visit my sisters,
who showed me every kind of kindness and all the wealth that I at
present enjoy is due to their goodness and munificence: wherefore I
will journey to them and return soon, Inshallah!" Quoth she, "O my son,
be not long absent from me;" and quoth he, "Know, O my mother, how thou
shalt do with my wife.  Here is her feather-dress in a chest, buried
under ground in such a place; do thou watch over it, lest haply she hap
on it and take it, for she would fly away, she and her children, and I
should never hear of them again and should die of grieving for them;
wherefore take heed, O my mother, while I warn thee that thou name this
not to her.  Thou must know that she is the daughter of a King of the
Jinn, than whom there is not a greater among the Sovrans of the Jann
nor a richer in troops and treasure, and she is mistress of her people
and dearest to her father of all he hath. Moreover, she is passing
high-spirited, so do thou serve her thyself and suffer her not to go
forth the door neither look out of window nor over the wall, for I fear
the air for her when it bloweth,[FN#83] and if aught befel her of the
calamities of this world, I should slay myself for her sake." She
replied, "O my son, I take refuge with Allah[FN#84] from gainsaying
thee!  Am I mad that thou shouldst lay this charge on me and I disobey
thee therein?  Depart, O my son, with heart at ease, and please Allah,
soon thou shalt return in safety and see her and she shall tell thee
how I have dealt with her: but tarry not, O my son, beyond the time of
travel."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninety-fourth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan had
determined to visit the Princesses, he gave his mother the orders we
have mentioned.[FN#85]  Now, as Fate would have it, his wife heard what
he said to his mother and neither of them knew it. Then Hasan went
without the city and beat the kettle-drum, whereupon up came the
dromedaries and he loaded twenty of them with rarities of Al-Irak;
after which he returned to his mother and repeated his charge to her
and took leave of her and his wife and children, one of whom was a
yearling babe and the other two years old.  Then he mounted and fared
on, without stopping night or day, over hills and valleys and plains
and wastes for a term of ten days till, on the eleventh, he reached the
palace and went in to his sisters, with the gifts he had brought them.
The Princesses rejoiced at his sight and gave him joy of his safety,
whilst his sister decorated the palace within and without.  Then they
took the presents and, lodging him in a chamber as before, asked him of
his mother and his wife, and he told them that she had borne him two
sons.  And the youngest Princess, seeing him well and in good case,
joyed with exceeding joy and repeated this couplet,

"I ever ask for news of you from whatso breezes pass * And never any
but yourselves can pass across my mind."

Then he abode with them in all honour and hospitality, for three
months, spending his time in feasting and merrymaking, joy and delight,
hunting and sporting.  So fared it with him; but as regards his wife,
she abode with his mother two days after her husband's departure, and
on the third day, she said to her, "Glory be to God!  Have I lived with
him three years and shall I never go to the bath?" Then she wept and
Hasan's mother had pity on her condition and said to her, "O my
daughter, here we are strangers and thy husband is abroad. Were he at
home, he would serve thee himself, but, as for me, I know no one.
However, O my daughter, I will heat thee water and wash thy head in the
Hammam-bath which is in the house." Answered the King's daughter, "O my
lady, hadst thou spoken thus to one of the slave-girls, she had
demanded to be sold in the Sultan's open market and had not abode with
thee.[FN#86] Men are excusable, because they are jealous and their
reason telleth them that, if a woman go forth the house, haply she will
do frowardness.  But women, O my lady, are not all equal and alike and
thou knowest that, if woman have a mind to aught, whether it be the
Hammam or what not else, none hath power over her to guard her or keep
her chaste or debar her from her desire; for she will do whatso she
willeth and naught restraineth her but her reason and her
religion."[FN#87] Then she wept and cursed fate and bemoaned herself
and her strangerhood, till Hasan's mother was moved to ruth for her
case and knew that all she said was but truth and that there was
nothing for it but to let her have her way.  So she committed the
affair to Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) and making ready all that
they needed for the bath, took her and went with her to the Hammam. She
carried her two little sons with her, and when they entered, they put
off their clothes and all the women fell to gazing on the Princess and
glorifying God (to whom belong Might and Majesty!) for that He had
created so fair a form. The women of the city, even those who were
passing by, flocked to gaze upon her, and the report of her was noised
abroad in Baghdad till the bath was crowded that there was no passing
through it.  Now it chanced there was present on that day and on that
rare occasion with the rest of the women in the Hammam, one of the
slave-girls of the Commander of the Faithful, Harun al-Rashid, by name
Tohfah[FN#88] the Lutanist, and she, finding the Hammam over crowded
and no passing for the throng of women and girls, asked what was to do;
and they told her of the young lady.  So she walked up to her and,
considering her closely, was amazed at her grace and loveliness and
glorified God (magnified be His majesty!) for the fair forms He hath
created. The sight hindered her from her bath, so that she went not
farther in nor washed, but sat staring at the Princess, till she had
made an end of bathing and coming forth of the caldarium donned her
raiment, whereupon beauty was added to her beauty.  She sat down on the
divan,[FN#89] whilst the women gazed upon her; then she looked at them
and veiling herself, went out.  Tohfah went out with her and followed
her, till she saw where she dwelt, when she left her and returned to
the Caliph's palace; and ceased not wending till she went in to the
Lady Zubaydah and kissed ground between her hands; whereupon quoth her
mistress, "O Tohfah, why hast thou tarried in the Hammam?"  She
replied, "O my lady, I have seen a marvel, never saw I its like amongst
men or women, and this it was that distracted me and dazed my wit and
amazed me, so that I forgot even to wash my head."  Asked Zubaydah,
"And what was that?" ; and Tohfah answered, "O my lady, I saw a damsel
in the bath, having with her two little boys like moons, eye never
espied her like, nor before her nor after her, neither is there the
fellow of her form in the whole world nor her peer amongst Ajams or
Turks or Arabs.  By the munificence, O my lady, an thou toldest the
Commander of the Faithful of her, he would slay her husband and take
her from him, for her like is not to be found among women.  I asked of
her mate and they told me that he is a merchant Hasan of Bassorah
hight.  Moreover, I followed her from the bath to her own house and
found it to be that of the Wazir, with the two gates, one opening on
the river and the other on the land.[FN#90]  Indeed, O my lady, I fear
lest the Prince of True Believers hear of her and break the law and
slay her husband and take love-liesse with her."—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninety-fifth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Tohfah,
after seeing the King's daughter, described her beauty to the Lady
Zubaydah ending with, "Indeed, O my mistress, I fear lest the Prince of
True Believers hear of her and break the law and slay her mate and take
her to wife," Zubaydah cried, "Woe to thee, O Tohfah, say me, doth this
damsel display such passing beauty and loveliness that the Commander of
the Faithful should, on her account, barter his soul's good for his
worldly lust and break the Holy Law!  By Allah, needs must I look on
her, and if she be not as thou sayest, I will bid strike off thy head!
O strumpet, there are in the Caliph's Serraglio three hundred and three
score slave girls, after the number of the days of the year, yet is
there none amongst them so excellent as thou describest!" Tohfah
replied, "No, by Allah, O my lady!: nor is there her like in all
Baghdad; no, nor amongst the Arabs or the Daylamites nor hath Allah (to
whom belong Might and Majesty!) created the like of her!" Thereupon
Zuhaydah called for Masrur, the eunuch, who came and kissed the ground
before her, and she said to him, "O Masrur, go to the Wazir's house,
that with the two gates, one giving on the water and the other on the
land, and bring me the damsel who dwelleth there, also her two children
and the old woman who is with her, and haste thou and tarry not." Said
Masrur, "I hear and I obey," and repairing to Hasan's house, knocked at
the door.  Quoth the old woman, "Who is at the door?" and quoth he,
"Masrur, the eunuch of the Commander of the Faithful."   So she opened
the door and he entered and saluted her with the salam; whereupon she
returned his salute and asked his need; and he replied, "The Lady
Zubaydah, daughter of Al-Kasim[FN#91] and queen-spouse of the Commander
of the Faithful Harun al-Rashid sixth[FN#92] of the sons of Al-Abbas,
paternal uncle of the Prophet (whom Allah bless and keep!) summoneth
thee to her, thee and thy son's wife and her children; for the women
have told her anent her and her beauty." Rejoined the old woman, "O my
lord Masrur, we are foreigner folk and the girl's husband (my son) who
is abroad and far from home hath strictly charged me not to go forth
nor let her go forth in his absence, neither show her to any of the
creatures of Allah Almighty; and I fear me, if aught befal her and he
come back, he will slay himself; wherefore of thy favour I beseech
thee, O Masrur, require us not of that whereof we are unable." Masrur
retorted, "O my lady, if I knew aught to be feared for you in this, I
would not require you to go; the Lady Zubaydah desireth but to see her
and then she may return.  So disobey not or thou wilt repent; and like
as I take you, I will bring you both back in safety, Inshallah!"
Hasan's mother could not gainsay him; so she went in and making the
damsel ready, brought her and her children forth and they all followed
Masrur to the palace of the Caliphate where he carried them in and
seated them on the floor before the Lady Zubaydah. They kissed ground
before her and called down blessings upon her; and Zubaydah said to the
young lady (who was veiled), "Wilt thou not uncover thy face, that I
may look on it?" So she kissed the ground between her hands and
discovered a face which put to shame the full moon in the height of
heaven.  Zubaydah fixed her eyes on her and let their glances wander
over her, whilst the palace was illumined by the light of her
countenance; whereupon the Queen and the whole company were amazed at
her beauty and all who looked on her became Jinn-mad and unable to
bespeak one another. As for Zubaydah, she rose and making the damsel
stand up, strained her to her bosom and seated her by herself on the
couch. Moreover, she bade decorate the palace in her honour and calling
for a suit of the richest raiment and a necklace of the rarest
ornaments put them upon her.  Then said she to her, "O liege lady of
fair ones, verily thou astoundest me and fillest mine eyes.[FN#93] What
arts knowest thou?" She replied, "O my lady, I have a dress of
feathers, and could I but put it on before thee, thou wouldst see one
of the fairest of fashions and marvel thereat, and all who saw it would
talk of its goodliness, generation after generation."  Zubaydah asked,
"And where is this dress of thine?"; and the damsel answered, "'Tis
with my husband's mother.  Do thou seek it for me of her." So Zubaydah
said to the old woman, "O my lady the pilgrimess, O my mother, go forth
and fetch us her feather-dress, that we may solace ourselves by looking
on what she will do, and after take it back again." Replied the old
woman, "O my lady, this damsel is a liar. Hast thou ever seen any of
womankind with a dress of feathers? Indeed, this belongeth only to
birds." But the damsel said to the Lady Zubaydah, "As thou livest, O my
lady, she hath a feather-dress of mine and it is in a chest, which is
buried in such a store-closet in the house." So Zubaydah took off her
neck a rivičre of jewels, worth all the treasures of Chosroe and Cćsar,
and gave it to the old woman, saying, "O my mother, I conjure thee by
my life, take this necklace and go and fetch us this dress, that we may
divert ourselves with the sight thereof, and after take it again!"  But
she sware to her that she had never seen any such dress and wist not
what the damsel meant by her speech.  Then the Lady Zubaydah cried out
at her and taking the key from her, called Masrur and said to him as
soon as her came, "Take this key and go to the house; then open it and
enter a store-closet there whose door is such and such and amiddlemost
of it thou wilt find a chest buried.  Take it out and break it open and
bring me the feather-dress which is therein and set it before me."—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninety-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Lady
Zubaydah, having taken the key from Hasan's mother, handed it to
Masrur, saying, "Take this key and open such a closet; then bring forth
of it the chest; break it open; bring me the feather-dress which is
therein and set it before me." "Hearkening and obedience," replied he
and taking the key went forth, whereupon the old woman arose and
followed him, weeping-eyed and repenting her of having given ear to the
damsel and gone with her to the bath, for her desire to go thither was
but a device.  So she went with him to the house and opened the door of
the closet, and he entered and brought out the chest.  Then he took
therefrom the feather-dress and wrapping it in a napkin, carried it to
the Lady Zubaydah, who took it and turned it about, marvelling at the
beauty of its make; after which she gave it to the damsel, saying, "Is
this thy dress of feathers?"  She replied, "Yes, O my lady," and at
once putting forth her hand, took it joyfully. Then she examined it and
rejoiced to find it whole as it was, not a feather gone.  So she rose
and came down from beside the Lady Zubaydah and taking her sons in her
bosom, wrapped herself in the feather-dress and became a bird, by the
ordinance of Allah (to whom belong Might and Majesty!), whereat
Zubaydah marvelled as did all who were present.  Then she walked with a
swaying and graceful gait and danced and sported and flapped her wings,
whilst all eyes were fixed on her and all marvelled at what she did. 
Then said she with fluent tongue, "Is this goodly, O my ladies?"; and
they replied, "Yes, O Princess of the fair! All thou dost is goodly."
Said she, "And this, O my mistresses, that I am about to do is better
yet." Then she spread her wings and flying up with her children to the
dome of the palace, perched on the saloon-roof whilst they all looked
at her, wide-eyed and said, "By Allah, this is indeed a rare and
peregrine fashion! Never saw we its like." Then, as she was about to
take flight for her own land, she bethought her of Hasan and said,
"Hark ye, my mistresses!" and she improvised these couplets,[FN#94]

"O who hast quitted these abodes and faredst lief and light * To
     other objects of thy love with fain and fastest flight!
Deem'st thou that 'bided I with you in solace and in joy * Or
     that my days amid you all were clear of bane and blight?
When I was captive ta'en of Love and snarčd in his snare, * He
     made of Love my prison and he fared fro' me forthright:
So when my fear was hidden, he made sure that ne'er should I *
     Pray to the One, th' Omnipotent to render me my right:
He charged his mother keep the secret with all the care she
     could, * In closet shut and treated me with enemy's
But I o'erheard their words and held them fast in memory * And
     hoped for fortune fair and weal and blessings infinite:
My faring to the Hammam-bath then proved to me the means * Of
     making minds of folk to be confounded at my sight:
Wondered the Bride of Al-Rashid to see my brilliancy * When she
     beheld me right and left with all of beauty dight:
Then quoth I, 'O our Caliph's wife, I once was wont to own * A
     dress of feathers rich and rare that did the eyes delight:
An it were now on me thou shouldst indeed see wondrous things *
     That would efface all sorrows and disperse all sores of
Then deigned our Caliph's Bride to cry, 'Where is that dress of
     thine?' * And I replied, 'In house of him kept darkling as
     the night.'
So down upon it pounced Masrúr and brought it unto her, * And
     when 'twas there each feather cast a ray of beaming light:
Therewith I took it from his hand and opened it straightway * And
     saw its plumčd bosom and its buttons pleased my sight:
And so I clad myself therein and took with me my babes; * And
     spread my wings and flew away with all my main and might;
Saying, 'O husband's mother mine tell him when cometh he * An
     ever wouldest meet her thou from house and home must flee."'

When she had made an end of her verses, the Lady Zubaydah said to her,
"Wilt thou not come down to us, that we may take our fill of thy
beauty, O fairest of the fair?  Glory be to Him who hath given thee
eloquence and brilliance!" But she said, "Far be from me that the Past
return should see!" Then said she to the mother of the hapless,
wretched Hasan, "By Allah, O my lady, O mother of my husband, it irketh
me to part from thee; but, whenas thy son cometh to thee and upon him
the nights of severance longsome shall be and he craveth reunion and
meeting to see and whenas breezes of love and longing shake him
dolefully, let him come in the islands of Wák[FN#95] to me." Then she
took flight with her children and sought her own country, whilst the
old woman wept and beat her face and moaned and groaned till she
swooned away. When she came to herself, she said to the Lady Zubaydah, 
"O my lady, what is this thou hast done?"  And Zubaydah said to her, "O
my lady the pilgrimess, I knew not that this would happen and hadst
thou told me of the case and acquainted me with her condition, I had
not gainsaid thee.  Nor did I know until now that she was of the Flying
Jinn; else had I not suffered her to don the dress nor permitted her to
take her children: but now, O my lady, words profit nothing; so do thou
acquit me of offence against thee."  And the old woman could do no
otherwise than shortly answer, "Thou art acquitted!" Then she went
forth the palace of the Caliphate and returned to her own house, where
she buffeted her face till she swooned away, When she came to herself,
she pined for her daughter-in-law and her grandchildren and for the
sight of her son and versified with these couplets,

"Your faring on the parting-day drew many a tear fro' me, * Who
     must your flying from the home long mourn in misery:
And cried I for the parting pang in anguish likest fire * And
     tear-floods chafed mine eyelids sore that ne'er of tears
     were free;
'Yes, this is Severance, Ah, shall we e'er joy return of you? *
     For your departure hath deprived my power of privacy!'
Ah, would they had returned to me in covenant of faith * An they
     return perhaps restore of past these eyne may see."

Then arising she dug in the house three graves and betook herself to
them with weeping all whiles of the day and watches of the night; and
when her son's absence was longsome upon her and grief and yearning and
unquiet waxed upon her, she recited these couplets,

"Deep in mine eye-balls ever dwells the phantom-form of thee * My
     heart when throbbing or at rest holds fast thy memory:
And love of thee doth never cease to course within my breast, *
     As course the juices in the fruits which deck the branchy
And every day I see thee not my bosom straightened is * And even
     censurers excuse the woes in me they see:
O thou whose love hath gotten hold the foremost in the heart * Of
     me whose fondness is excelled by mine insanity:
Fear the Compassionate in my case and some compassion show! *
     Love of thee makes me taste of death in bitterest pungency."

—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninety-seventh Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Hasan's
mother bewept through the watches of the night and the whiles of the
day her separation from her son and his wife and children.  On this
wise it fared with her; but as regards Hasan, when he came to the
Princesses, they conjured him to tarry with them three months, after
which long sojourn they gave him five loads of gold and the like of
silver and one load of victual and accompanied him on his homeward way
till he conjured them to return, whereupon they farewelled him with an
embrace; but the youngest came up to him, to bid him adieu and clasping
his neck wept till she fainted. Then she recited these two  couplets,

"When shall the severance-fire be quenched by union, love, with
     you? * When shall I win my wish of you and days that were
The parting-day affrighted me and wrought me dire dismay * And
     doubleth woe, O master mine, by the sad word 'Adieu.'"

Anon came forward the second Princess and embraced him and recited
these two couplets,

"Farewelling thee indeed is like to bidding life farewell * And
     like the loss of Zephyr[FN#96] 'tis to lose thee far our
Thine absence is a flaming fire which burneth up my heart * And
     in thy presence I enjoy the Gardens of Delight."[FN#97]

Presently came forward the third and embraced him and recited these two

"We left not taking leave of thee (when bound to other goal) *
     From aught of ill intention or from weariness and dole:
Thou art my soul, my very soul, the only soul of me: * And how
     shall I farewell myself and say, 'Adieu my Soul?'"[FN#98]

After her came forward the fourth and embraced him and recited these
two couplets,

"Nought garred me weep save where and when of severance spake he,
     * Persisting in his cruel will with sore persistency:
Look at this pearl-like ornament I've hung upon mine ear: * 'Tis
     of the tears of me compact, this choicest jewelry!"

In her turn came forward the fifth and embraced him and recited these
two couplets,

"Ah, fare thee not; for I've no force thy faring to endure, * Nor
     e'en to say the word farewell before my friend is sped:
Nor any patience to support the days of severance, * Nor any
     tears on ruined house and wasted home to shed."

Next came the sixth and embraced him and recited these two couplets,

"I cried, as the camels went off with them, * And Love pained my
     vitals with sorest pain:
Had I a King who would lend me rule * I'd seize every ship that
     dares sail the Main."

Lastly came forward the seventh and embraced him and recited these

"When thou seest parting, be patient still, * Nor let foreign
     parts deal thy soul affright:
But abide, expecting a swift return, * For all hearts hold
     parting in sore despight."

And eke these two couplets,

"Indeed I'm heartbroken to see thee start, * Nor can I farewell
     thee ere thou depart;
Allah wotteth I left not to say adieu * Save for fear that saying
     would melt your heart."

Hasan also wept for parting from them, till he swooned, and repeated
these couplets,

"Indeed, ran my tears on the severance-day * Like pearls I
     threaded in necklace-way:
The cameleer drove his camels with song * But I lost heart,
     patience and strength and stay:
I bade them farewell and retired in grief * From tryst-place and
     camp where my dearlings lay:
I turned me unknowing the way nor joyed * My soul, but in hopes
     to return some day.
Oh listen, my friend, to the words of love * God forbid thy heart
     forget all I say!
O my soul when thou partest wi' them, part too * With all joys of
     life nor for living pray!"

Then he farewelled them and fared on diligently night and day, till he
came to Baghdad, the House of Peace and Sanctuary of the Abbaside
Caliphs, unknowing what had passed during his wayfare. At once entering
his house he went in to his mother to salute her, but found her worn of
body and wasted of bones, for excess of mourning and watching, weeping
and wailing, till she was grown thin as a tooth-pick and could not
answer him a word.  So he dismissed the dromedaries then asked her of
his wife and children and she wept till she fainted, and he seeing her
in this state searched the house for them, but found no trace of them. 
Then he went to the store-closet and finding it open and the chest
broken and the feather-dress missing, knew forthright that his wife had
possessed herself thereof and flown away with her children.  Then he
returned to his mother and, finding her recovered from her fit,
questioned her of his spouse and babes, whereupon she wept and said, "O
my son, may Allah amply requite thee their loss! These are their three
tombs."[FN#99] When Hasan heard these words of his mother, he shrieked
a loud shriek and fell down in a fainting-fit in which he lay from the
first of the day till noon-tide; whereupon anguish was added to his
mother's anguish and she despared of his life.  However, after a-while,
he came to himself and wept and buffeted his face and rent his raiment
and went about the house clean distraught, reciting these two

"Folk have made moan of passion before me, of past years, * And
     live and dead for absence have suffered pains and fears;
But that within my bosom I harbour, with mine eyes * I've never
     seen the like of nor heard with mine ears."

Then finishing his verses he bared his brand and coming up to his
mother, said to her, "Except thou tell me the truth of the case, I will
strike off thy head and kill myself." She replied, "O my son, do not
such deed: put up thy sword and sit down, till I tell thee what hath
passed."  So he sheathed his scymitar and sat by her side, whilst she
recounted to him all that had happened in his absence from first to
last, adding, "O my son, but that I saw her weep in her longing for the
bath and feared that she would go and complain to thee on thy return,
and thou wouldst be wroth with me, I had never carried her thither; and
were it not that the Lady Zubaydah was wroth with me and took the key
from me by force, I had never brought out the feather-dress, though I
died for it. But thou knowest, O my son, that no hand may measure
length with that of the Caliphate.  When they brought her the dress,
she took it and turned it over, fancying that somewhat might be lost
thereof, but she found it uninjured; wherefore she rejoiced and making
her children fast to her waist, donned the feather-vest, after the Lady
Zubaydah had pulled off to her all that was upon herself and clad her
therein, in honour of her and because of her beauty.  No sooner had she
donned the dress than she shook and becoming a bird, promenaded about
the palace, whilst all who were present gazed at her and marvelled at
her beauty and loveliness.  Then she flew up to the palace roof and
perching thereon, looked at me and said: 'Whenas thy son cometh to thee
and the nights of separation upon him longsome shall be and he craveth
reunion and meeting to see and whenas the breezes of love and longing
shake him dolefully let him leave his native land and journey to the
Islands of Wak and seek me.' This, then, is her story and what befel in
thine absence."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninety-eighth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that as soon as
Hasan's mother had made an end of her story, he gave a great cry and
fell down in a fainting fit which continued till the end of day, when
he revived and fell to buffeting his face and writhing on the floor
like a scotched snake.  His mother sat weeping by his head until
midnight, when he came to himself and wept sore and recited these

"Pause ye and see his sorry state since when ye fain withdrew; *
     Haply, when wrought your cruelty, you'll have the grace to
For an ye look on him, you'll doubt of him by sickness-stress *
     As though, by Allah, he were one before ye never knew.
He dies for nothing save for love of you, and he would be *
     Numbered amid the dead did not he moan and groan for you.
And deem not pangs of severance sit all lightly on his soul; *
     'Tis heavy load on lover-wight; 'twere lighter an ye slew."

Then having ended his verse he rose and went round about the house,
weeping and wailing, groaning and bemoaning himself, five days, during
which he tasted nor meat nor drink.  His mother came to him and
conjured him, till he broke his fast, and besought him to leave
weeping; but he hearkened not to her and continued to shed tears and
lament, whilst she strove to comfort him and he heeded her not.  Then
he recited these couplets,[FN#102]

"Beareth for love a burden sore this soul of me, * Could break a
     mortal's back however strong that be;
I am distraught to see my case and languor grows * Making my day
     and night indifferent in degree:
I own to having dreaded Death before this day: * This day I hold
     my death mine only remedy."

And Hasan ceased not to do thus till daybreak, when his eyes closed and
he saw in a dream his wife grief-full and repentant for that which she
had done.  So he started up from sleep crying out and reciting these
two couplets,

"Their image bides with me, ne'er quits me, ne'er shall fly; *
     But holds within my heart most honourable stead;
But for reunion-hope, I'd see me die forthright, * And but for
     phantom-form of thee my sleep had fled."

And as morning morrowed he redoubled his lamentations.  He abode
weeping-eyed and heavy-hearted, wakeful by night and eating little, for
a whole month, at the end of which he bethought him to repair to his
sisters and take counsel with them in the matter of his wife, so haply
they might help him to regain her. Accordingly he summoned the
dromedaries and loading fifty of them with rarities of Al-Irak,
committed the house to his mother's care and deposited all his goods in
safe keeping, except some few he left at home.  Then he mounted one of
the beasts and set out on his journey single handed, intent upon
obtaining aidance from the Princesses, and he stayed not till he
reached the Palace of the Mountain of Clouds, when he went in to the
damsels and gave them the presents in which they rejoiced. Then they
wished him joy of his safety and said to him, "O our brother, what can
ail thee to come again so soon, seeing thou wast with us but two months
since?"  Whereupon he wept and improvised these couplets,

"My soul for loss of lover sped I sight; * Nor life enjoying
     neither  life's delight:
My case is one whose cure is all unknown; * Can any cure the sick
     but doctor wight?
O who hast reft my sleep-joys, leaving me * To ask the breeze
     that blew from that fair site,—
Blew from my lover's land (the land that owns * Those charms so
     sore a grief in soul excite),
'O breeze, that visitest her land, perhaps * Breathing her scent,
     thou mayst revive my sprite!'"

And when he ended his verse he gave a great cry and fell down in a
fainting-fit.  The Princesses sat round him, weeping over him, till he
recovered and repeated these two couplets,

"Haply and happily may Fortune bend her rein * Bringing my love,
     for Time's a freke of jealous strain;[FN#103]
Fortune may prosper me, supply mine every want, * And bring a
     blessing where before were ban and bane."

Then he wept till he fainted again, and presently coming to himself
recited the two following couplets,

"My wish, mine illness, mine unease! by Allah, own * Art thou
     content? then I in love contented wone!
Dost thou forsake me thus sans crime or sin * Meet me in ruth, I
     pray, and be our parting gone."

Then he wept till he swooned away once more and when he revived he
repeated these couplets,

"Sleep fled me, by my side wake ever shows * And hoard of
     tear-drops from these eyne aye flows;
For love they weep with beads cornelian-like * And growth of
     distance greater dolence grows:
Lit up my longing, O my love, in me * Flames burning 'neath my
     ribs with fiery throes!
Remembering thee a tear I never shed * But in it thunder roars
     and leven glows."

Then he wept till he fainted away a fourth time, and presently
recovering, recited these couplets,

"Ah! for lowe of love and longing suffer ye as suffer we? * Say,
     as pine we and as yearn we for you are pining ye?
Allah do the death of Love, what a bitter draught is his! * Would
     I  wot of Love what plans and what projects nurseth he!
Your faces radiant-fair though afar from me they shine, * Are
     mirrored in our eyes whatsoever the distance be;
My heart must ever dwell on the memories of your tribe; * And the
     turtle-dove reneweth all as oft as moaneth she:
Ho thou dove, who passest night-tide in calling on thy fere, *
     Thou doublest my repine, bringing grief for company;
And leavest thou mine eyelids with weeping unfulfilled * For the
     dearlings who departed, whom we never more may see:
I melt for the thought of you at every time and hour, * And I
     long for you when Night showeth cheek of blackest blee."

Now when his sister heard these words and saw his condition and how he
lay fainting on the floor, she screamed and beat her face and the other
Princesses hearing her scream came out and learning his misfortune and
the transport of love and longing and the passion and distraction that
possessed him they questioned him of his case.  He wept and told them
what had befallen in his absence and how his wife had taken flight with
her children, wherefore they grieved for him and asked him what she
said at leave-taking. Answered he, "O my sisters, she said to my
mother, 'Tell thy son, whenas he cometh to thee and the nights of
severance upon him longsome shall be and he craveth reunion and meeting
to see, and whenas the winds of love and longing shake him dolefully,
let him fare in the Islands of Wak to me." When they heard his words
they signed one to other with their eyes and shook their heads, and
each looked at her sister, whilst Hasan looked at them all.  Then they
bowed their heads groundwards and bethought themselves awhile; after
which they raised their heads and said, "There is no Majesty and there
is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!"; presently adding,
"Put forth thy hand to heaven and when thou reach thither, then shalt
thou win to thy wife.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninety-ninth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Princesses said to Hasan, "Put forth thy hand to Heaven and when thou
reach thither, then shalt thou win to wife and children," thereat the
tears ran down his cheeks like rain and wet his clothes, and he recited
these couplets,

"Pink cheeks and eyes enpupil'd black have dealt me sore
     despight; * And whenas wake overpowered sleep my patience
     fled in fright:
The fair and sleek-limbed maidens hard of heart withal laid waste
     * My very bones till not a breath is left for man to sight:
Houris, who fare with gait of grace as roes o'er sandy-mound: *
     Did Allah's saints behold their charms they'd doat thereon
Faring as fares the garden breeze that bloweth in the dawn. * For
     love of them a sore unrest and troubles rack my sprite:
I hung my hopes upon a maid, a loveling fair of them, * For whom
     my heart still burns with lowe in Lazá-hell they light;—
A dearling soft of sides and haught and graceful in her gait, *
     Her grace is white as morning, but her hair is black as
She stirreth me!  But ah, how many heroes have her cheeks *
     Upstirred for love, and eke her eyes that mingle black and

Then he wept, whilst the Princesses wept for his weeping, and they were
moved to compassion and jealousy for him.  So they fell to comforting
him and exhorting him to patience and offering up prayers for his
reunion with his wife; whilst his sister said to him, "O my brother, be
of good cheer and keep thine eyes cool and clear and be patient; so
shalt thou win thy will; for whoso hath patience and waiteth, that he
seeketh attaineth.  Patience holdeth the keys of relief and indeed the
poet saith,

'Let destiny with slackened rein its course appointed fare!  And
     lie thou down to sleep by night, with heart devoid of care;
For 'twixt the closing of an eye and th' opening thereof, God
     hath it in His power to change a case from foul to

So hearten thy heart and brace up thy resolve, for the son of ten years
dieth not in the ninth.[FN#105]  Weeping and grief and mourning gender
sickness and disease; wherefore do thou abide with us till thou be
rested, and I will devise some device for thy winning to thy wife and
children, Inshallah—so it please Allah the Most High!"  And he wept
sore and recited these verses,

"An I be healed of disease in frame, * I'm unhealed of illness in
     heart and sprite:
There is no healing disease of love, * Save lover and loved one
     to re-unite."

Then he sat down beside her and she proceeded to talk with him and
comfort him and question him of the cause and the manner of his wife's
departure. So he told her and she said, "By Allah, O my brother, I was
minded to bid thee burn the feather-dress, but Satan made me forget
it."  She ceased not to converse with him and caress him and company
with him other ten days, whilst sleep visited him not and he delighted
not in food; and when the case was longsome upon him and unrest waxed
in him, he versified with these couplets,

"A beloved familiar o'erreigns my heart * And Allah's ruling
     reigns evermore:
She hath all the Arabs' united charms * This gazelle who feeds on
     my bosom's core.
Though my skill and patience for love of her fail, * I weep
     whilst I wot that 'tis vain to deplore.
The dearling hath twice seven years, as though * She were moon of
     five nights and of five plus four."[FN#106]

When the youngest Princess saw him thus distracted for love and
longing-for passion and the fever-heat of desire, she went in to her
sisterhood weeping-eyed and woeful-hearted, and shedding copious tears
threw herself upon them, kissed their feet and besought them to devise
some device for bringing Hasan to the Islands of Wak and effecting his
reunion with his wife and wees. She ceased not to conjure them to
further her brother in the accomplishment of his  desire and to weep
before them, till she made them weep and they said to her, "Hearten thy
heart:  we will do our best endeavour to bring about his reunion with
his family, Inshallah!" And he abode with them a whole year, during
which his eyes never could retain their tears.  Now the sisterhood had
an uncle, brother-german to their sire and his name was Abd al-Kaddús,
or Slave of the Most Holy; and he loved the eldest with exceeding love
and was wont to visit her once a year and do all she desired. They had
told him of Hasan's adventure with the Magian and how he had been able
to slay him; whereat he rejoiced and gave the eldest Princess a
pouch[FN#107] which contained certain perfumes, saying, "O daughter of
my brother, an thou be in concern for aught, or if aught irk thee, or
thou stand in any need, cast of these perfumes upon fire naming my name
and I will be with thee forthright and will do thy desire." This speech
was spoken on the first of Moharram[FN#108]; and the eldest Princess
said to one of the sisterhood, "Lo, the year is wholly past and my
uncle is not come.  Rise, bring me the fire-sticks and the box of
perfumes." So the damsel arose rejoicing and, fetching what she sought,
laid it before her sister, who opened the box and taking thence a
little of the perfume, cast it into the fire, naming her unde's name;
nor was it burnt out ere appeared a dust-cloud at the farther end of
the Wady; and presently lifting, it discovered a Shaykh riding on an
elephant, which moved at a swift and easy pace, and trumpeted under the
rider.  As soon as he came within sight of the Princesses, he began
making signs to them with his hands and feet; nor was it long ere he
reached the castle and, alighting from the elephant, came in to them,
whereupon they embraced him and kissed his hands and saluted him with
the salam.  Then he sat down, whilst the girls talked with him and
questioned him of his absence. Quoth he, "I was sitting but now with my
wife, your aunt, when I smelt the perfumes and hastened to you on this
elephant.  What wouldst thou, O daughter of my brother?"  Quoth she, "O
uncle, indeed we longed for thee, as the year is past and 'tis not thy
wont to be absent from us more than a twelvemonth." Answered he, "I was
busy, but I purposed to come to you to-morrow." Wherefore they thanked
him and blessed him and sat talking with him.—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundredth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the girls
sat down to chat with their uncle the eldest said to him, "O my uncle,
we told thee the tale of Hasan of Bassorah, whom Bahram the Magian
brought and how he slew the wizard and how, after enduring all manner
of hardships and horrors, he made prize of the Supreme King's daughter
and took her to wife and journeyed with her to his native land?"
Replied he, "Yes, and what befel him after that?" Quoth the Princess,
"She played him false after he was blest with two sons by her; for she
took them in his absence and fled with them to her own country, saying
to his mother: 'Whenas thy son returneth to thee and asketh for me and
upon him the nights of severance longsome shall be and he craveth
reunion and meeting to see and whenas the breezes of love and longing
shake him dolefully, let him come in the Islands of Wak to me.'" When
Abd al-Kaddus heard this, he shook his head and bit his forefinger;
then, bowing his brow groundwards he began to make marks on the earth
with his finger-tips;[FN#109] after which he again shook his head and
looked right and left and shook his head a third time, whilst Hasan
watched him from a place where he was hidden from him.  Then said the
Princesses to their uncle, "Return us some answer, for our hearts are
rent in sunder." But he shook his head at them, saying, "O my
daughters, verily hath this man wearied himself in vain and cast
himself into grievous predicament and sore peril; for he may not gain
access to the Islands of Wak." With this the Princesses called Hasan,
who came forth and, advancing to Shaykh Abd al-Kaddus, kissed his hand
and saluted him.  The old man rejoiced in him and seated him by his
side; whereupon quoth the damsels, "O uncle, acquaint our brother Hasan
with that thou hast told us."  So he said to Hasan, "O my son, put away
from thee this peine forte et dure; for thou canst never gain access to
the Islands of Wak, though the Flying Jinn and the Wandering Stars were
with thee; for that betwixt thee and these islands are seven Wadys and
seven seas and seven mighty mountains.  How then canst thou come at
this stead and who shall bring thee thither?  Wherefore, Allah upon
thee, O my son, do thou reckon thy spouse and sons as dead and turn
back forthright and weary not thy sprite!  Indeed, I give thee good
counsel, an thou wilt but accept it."  Hearing these words from the
Shaykh, Hasan wept till he fainted, and the Princesses sat round him,
weeping for his weeping, whilst the youngest sister rent her raiment
and buffeted her face, till she swooned away.  When Shaykh Abd
al-Kaddus saw them in this transport of grief and trouble and mourning,
he was moved to ruth for them and cried, "Be ye silent!"  Then said he
to Hasan, "O my son, hearten thy heart and rejoice in the winning of
thy wish, an it be the will of Allah the Most High;" presently adding,
"Rise, O my son, take courage and follow me."  So Hasan arose
forthright and after he had taken leave of the Princesses followed him,
rejoicing in the fulfilment of his wish. Then the Shaykh called the
elephant and mounting, took Hasan up behind him and fared on three days
with their nights, like the blinding leven, till he came to a vast blue
mountain, whose stones were all of azure hue and amiddlemost of which
was a cavern, with a door of Chinese iron.  Here he took Hasan's hand
and let him down and alighting dismissed the elephant.  Then he went up
to the door and knocked, whereupon it opened and there came out to him
a black slave, hairless, as he were an Ifrit, with brand in right hand
and targe of steel in left.  When he saw Abd al-Kaddus, he threw sword
and buckler from his grip and coming up to the Shaykh kissed his hand. 
Thereupon the old man took Hasan by the hand and entered with him,
whilst the slave shut the door behind them; when Hasan found himself in
a vast cavern and a spacious, through which ran an arched corridor and
they ceased not faring on therein a mile or so, till it abutted upon a
great open space and thence they made for an angle of the mountain
wherein were two huge doors cast of solid brass.  The old man opened
one of them and said to Hasan, "Sit at the door, whilst I go within and
come back to thee in haste, and beware lest thou open it and enter."
Then he fared inside and, shutting the door after him, was absent
during a full sidereal hour, after which he returned, leading a black
stallion, thin of flank and short of nose, which was ready bridled and
saddled, with velvet housings; and when it ran it flew, and when it
flew, the very dust in vain would pursue; and brought it to Hasan,
saying, "Mount!" So he mounted and Abd al-Kaddus opened the second
door, beyond which appeared a vast desert.  Then the twain passed
through the door into that desert and the old man said to him, "O my
son, take this scroll and wend thou whither this steed will carry thee.
 When thou seest him stop at the door of a cavern like this, alight and
throw the reins over the saddle-bow and let him go.  He will enter the
cavern, which do thou not enter with him, but tarry at the door five
days, without being weary of waiting.  On the sixth day there will come
forth to thee a black Shaykh, clad all in sable, with a long white
beard, flowing down to his navel. As soon as thou seest him, kiss his
hands and seize his skirt and lay it on thy head and weep before him,
till he take pity on thee and he will ask thee what thou wouldst have. 
When he saith to thee, 'What is thy want?' give him this scroll which
he will take without speaking and go in and leave thee.  Wait at the
door other five days, without wearying, and on the sixth day expect
him; and if he come out to thee himself, know that thy wish will be
won, but, if one of his pages come forth to thee, know that he who
cometh forth to thee, purposeth to kill thee; and—the Peace![FN#110] 
For know, O my son, that whoso self imperilleth doeth himself to
death;"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and First Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that after
handing the scroll to Hasan, Shaykh Abd al-Kaddus told him what would
befal him and said, "Whoso self imperilleth doeth himself to death; but
also who ventureth naught advantageth naught. However an thou fear for
thy life, cast it not into danger of destruction; but, an thou fear
not, up and do thy will, for I have expounded to thee the whole case. 
Yet shouldest thou be minded to return to thy friends the elephant is
still here and he will carry thee to my nieces, who will restore thee
to thy country and return thee to thy home, and Allah will vouchsafe
thee a better than this girl, of whom thou art enamoured." Hasan
answered the Shaykh, saying, "And how shall life be sweet to me, except
I win my wish?  By Allah, I will never turn back, till I regain my
beloved or my death overtake me!" And he wept and recited these

"For loss of lover mine and stress of love I dree, * I stood
     bewailing self in deep despondency.
Longing for him, the Spring-camp's dust I kissed and kissed, *
     But this bred more of grief and galling reverie.
God guard the gone, who in our hearts must e'er abide * With
     nearing woes and joys which still the farther flee.
They say me, 'Patience!' But they bore it all away: * On
     parting-day, and left me naught save tormentry.
And naught affrighted me except the word he said, * 'Forget me
     not when gone nor drive from memory.'
To whom shall turn I? hope in whom when you are lost? * Who were
     my only hopes and joys and woes of me?
But ah, the pang of home-return when parting thus! * How joyed at
     seeing me return mine enemy.
Then well-away! this 'twas I guarded me against! * And ah, thou
     lowe of Love double thine ardency![FN#111]
An fled for aye my friends I'll not survive the flight; * Yet an
     they deign return, Oh joy!  Oh ecstacy!
Never, by Allah tears and weeping I'll contain * For loss of you,
     but tears on tears and tears will rain."

When Abd al-Kaddus heard his verse he knew that he would not turn back
from his desire nor would words have effect on him, and was certified
that naught would serve him but he must imperil himself, though it lose
him his life.  So he said to him, "Know, O my son, that the Islands of
Wak are seven islands, wherein is a mighty host, all virgin girls, and
the Inner Isles are peopled by Satans and Marids and warlocks and
various tribesmen of the Jinn; and whoso entereth their land never
returneth thence; at least none hath done so to this day.  So, Allah
upon thee, return presently to thy people, for know that she whom thou
seekest is the King's daughter of all these islands: and how canst thou
attain to her? Hearken to me, O my son, and haply Allah will vouchsafe
thee in her stead a better than she."  "O my lord," answered Hasan,
though for the love of her I were cut in pieces yet should I but
redouble in love and transport!  There is no help but that I enter the
Wak Islands and come to the sight of my wife and children; and
Inshallah, I will not return save with her and with them." Said the
Shaykh, "Then nothing will serve thee but thou must make the journey?"
Hasan replied "Nothing! and I only ask of thee thy prayers for help and
aidance; so haply Allah will reunite me with my wife and children right
soon." Then he wept for stress of longing and recited these couplets,

"You are my wish, of creatures brightest-light * I deem you lief
     as hearing, fain as sight:
You hold my heart which hath become your home * And since you
     left me, lords, right sore's my plight:
Then think not I have yielded up your love, * Your love which set
     this wretch in fierce affright:
You went and went my joy whenas you went; * And waned and wax'ed
     wan the brightest light:
You left me lone to watch the stars in woe: * Railing tears
     likest rain-drops infinite.
Thou'rt longsome to the wight, who pining lies * On wake,
     moon-gazing through the night,
O Night! Wind! an thou pass the tribe where they abide * Give
     them my greeting, life is fain of flight.
And tell them somewhat of the pangs I bear: * The loved one
     kenneth not my case aright."

Then he wept with sore weeping till he fainted away; and when he came
to himself, Shaykh Abd al-Kaddus said to him, "O my son, thou hast a
mother; make her not taste the torment of thy loss." Hasan replied, "By
Allah, O my lord, I will never return except with my wife, or my death
shall overtake me." And he wept and wailed and recited these couplets,

"By Love's right! naught of farness thy slave can estrange * Nor
     am I one to fail in my fealty:
I suffer such pains did I tell my case * To folk, they'd cry,
     'Madness! clean witless is he!'
Then ecstasy, love-longing, transport and lowe! * Whose case is
     such case how shall ever he be?"

With this the old man knew that he would not turn from his purpose,
though it cost him his life; so he handed him the scroll and prayed for
him and charged him how he should do, saying "I have in this letter
given a strict charge concerning thee to Abú al-Ruwaysh,[FN#112] son of
Bilkís, daughter of Mu'in, for he is my Shaykh and my teacher, and all,
men and Jinn, humble themselves to him and stand in awe of him.  And
now go with the blessing of God." Hasan forthright set out giving the
horse the rein, and it flew off with him swiftlier than lightning, and
stayed not in its course ten days, when he saw before him a vast loom
black as night, walling the world from East to West.  As he neared it,
the stallion neighed under him, whereupon there flocked to it horses in
number as the drops of rain, none could tell their tale or against them
prevail, and fell to rubbing themselves against it.  Hasan was
affrighted at them and fared forwards surrounded by the horses, without
drawing rein till he came to the cavern which Shaykh Abd al-Kaddus had
described to him.  The steed stood still at the door and Hasan alighted
and bridged the bridle over the saddle-bow[FN#113]; whereupon the steed
entered the cavern, whilst the rider abode without, as the old man had
charged him, pondering the issue of his case in perplexity and
distraction and unknowing what would befal him.—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Second Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Hasan,
dismounting from the steed, stood at the cavern-mouth pondering the
issue of his case and unknowing what might befal him.  He abode
standing on the same spot five days with their nights, sleepless,
mournful, tearful-eyed; distracted, perplexed, pondering his severance
from home and family, comrades and friends, with weeping eye-lids and
heavy heart. Then he bethought him of his mother and of what might yet
happen to him and of his separation from his wife and children and of
all that he had suffered, and he recited these couplets,

"With you is my heart-cure a heart that goes; * And from
     hill-foot of eyelids the tear-rill flows:
And parting and sorrow and exile and dole * And farness from
     country and throe that o'erthrows:
Naught am I save a lover distracted by love, * Far parted from
     loved one and wilted by woes.
And 'tis Love that hath brought me such sorrow, say where * Is
     the noble of soul who such sorrow unknows?"

Hardly had Hasan made an end of his verses, when out came the Shaykh
Abu al-Ruwaysh, a blackamoor and clad in black raiment, and at first
sight he knew him by the description that Abd al-Kaddus had given him. 
He threw himself at his feet and rubbed his cheeks on them and seizing
his skirt, laid it on his head and wept before him.  Quoth the old man,
"What wantest thou, O my son?" Whereupon he put out his hand to him
with the letter, and Abu al-Ruwaysh took it and re-entered the cavern,
without making him any answer.  So Hasan sat down at the cave-mouth in
his place other five days as he had been bidden, whilst concern grew
upon him and terror redoubled on him and restlessness gat hold of him,
and he fell to weeping and bemoaning himself for the anguish of
estrangement and much watching. And he recited these couplets,

"Glory to Him who guides the skies! * The lover sore in sorrow
Who hath not tasted of Love's food * Knows not what mean its
Did I attempt to stem my tears * Rivers of blood would fount and
How many an intimate is hard * Of heart, and pains in sorest
An she with me her word would keep, * Of tears and sighs I'd fain
But I'm forgone, rejected quite * Ruin on me hath cast her eyes.
At my fell pangs fell wildlings weep * And not a bird for me but

Hasan ceased not to weep till dawn of the sixth day, when Shaykh Abu
al-Ruwaysh came forth to him, clad in white raiment, and with his hand
signed[FN#114] to him to enter.  So he went in, rejoicing and assured
of the winning of his wish, and the old man took him by the hand and
leading him into the cavern, fared on with him half a day's journey,
till they reached an arched doorway with a door of steel.  The Shaykh
opened the door and they two entered a vestibule vaulted with onyx
stones and arabesqued with gold, and they stayed not walking till they
came to a great hall and a wide, paved and walled with marble.  In its
midst was a flower-garden containing all manner trees and flowers and
fruits, with birds warbling on the boughs and singing the praises of
Allah the Almighty Sovran; and there were four daďses, each facing
other, and in each daďs a jetting fountain, at whose corners stood
lions of red gold, spouting gerbes from their mouths into the basin. 
On each daďs stood a chair, whereon sat an elder, with exceeding store
of books before him[FN#115] and censers of gold, containing fire and
perfumes, and before each elder were students, who read the books to
him.  Now when the twain entered, the elders rose to them and did them
honour; whereupon Abu al-Ruwaysh signed to them to dismiss their
scholars and they did so.  Then the four arose and seating themselves
before that Shaykh, asked him of the case of Hasan to whom he said,
"Tell the company thy tale and all that hath betided thee from the
beginning of thine adventure to the end." So Hasan wept with sore
weeping and related to them his story with Bahram; whereupon all the
Shaykhs cried out and said, "Is this indeed he whom the Magian caused
to climb the Mountain of Clouds by means of the vultures, sewn up in
the camel-hide?" And Hasan said, "Yes."  So they turned to the Shaykh,
Abu al-Ruwaysh and said to him, "O our Shaykh, of a truth Bahram
contrived his mounting to the mountaintop; but how came he down and
what marvels saw he there?" And Abu al-Ruwaysh said, "O Hasan, tell
them how thou camest down and acquaint them with what thou sawest of
marvels." So he told them all that had befallen him, first and last;
how he had gotten the Magian into his power and slain him, how he had
delivered the youth from him and sent him back to his own country, and
how he had captured the King's daughter of the Jinn and married her;
yet had she played him false and taken the two boys she had borne him
and flown away; brief, he related to them all the hardships and horrors
he had undergone; whereat they marvelled, each and every, and said to
Abu al-Ruwaysh, "O elder of elders, verily by Allah, this youth is to
be pitied!  But belike thou wilt aid him to recover his wife and
wees."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Third Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan
told his tale to the elders, they said to Shaykh Abu al-Ruwaysh, "This
youth is to be pitied and haply thou wilt aid him to recover his wife
and wees." He replied, "O my brothers, in very sooth this is a grave
matter and a perilous; and never saw I any loathe his life save this
youth.  You know that the Islands of Wak are hard of access and that
none may come to them but at risk of life; and ye know also the
strength of their people and their guards.  Moreover I have sworn an
oath not to tread their soil nor transgress against them in aught; so
how shall this man come at the daughter of the Great King, and who hath
power to bring him to her or help him in this matter?" Replied the
other, "O Shaykh of Shaykhs, verily this man is consumed with desire
and he hath endangered himself to bring thee a scroll from thy brother
Abd al-Kaddus; wherefore it behoveth thee to help him." And Hasan arose
and kissed Abu al-Ruwaysh's feet and raising the hem of his garment
laid it on his head, weeping and crying, "I beseech thee, by Allah, to
reunite me with my wife and children, though it cost me my life and my
soul!"  The four elders all wept for his weeping and said to Abu
al-Ruwaysh, "Deal generously with this unhappy and show him kindness
for the sake of thy brother Abd al-Kaddus and profit by this occasion
to earn reward from Allah for helping him." Quoth he, "This wilful
youth weeteth not what he undertaketh; but Inshallah! we will help him
after the measure of our means, nor leave aught feasible undone." When
Hasan heard the Shaykh's word he rejoiced and kissed the hands of the
five elders, one after other, imploring their aidance. Thereupon Abd
al-Ruwaysh took inkcase and a sheet of paper and wrote a letter, which
he sealed and gave to Hasan, together with a pouch of perfumed
leather,[FN#116] containing incense and fire-sticks[FN#117] and other
needs, and said to him, "Take strictest care of this pouch, and whenas
thou fallest into any strait, burn a little of the incense therein and
name my name, whereupon I will be with thee forthright and save thee
from thy stress." Moreover, he bade one of those present fetch him an
Ifrit of the Flying Jinn; and he did so incontinently; whereupon quoth
Abu al-Ruwaysh to the fire-drake, "What is thy name!" Replied the
Ifrit, "Thy thrall is hight Dahnash bin Faktash." And the Shaykh said
"Draw near to me!" So Dahnash drew near to him and he put his mouth to
his ear and said somewhat to him, whereat the Ifrit shook his head and
answered, "I accept, O elder of elders!" Then said Abu al-Ruwaysh to
Hasan, "Arise, O my son, mount the shoulders of this Ifrit, Dahnash the
Flyer; but, when he heaveth thee heaven-wards and thou hearest the
angels glorifying God a-welkin with 'Subhána 'lláh,' have a care lest
thou do the like; else wilt thou perish and he too." Hasan replied, "I
will not say a word; no, never;" and the old man continued, "O Hasan,
after faring with thee all this day, to-morrow at peep of dawn he will
set thee down in a land cleanly white, like unto camphor, whereupon do
thou walk on ten days by thyself, till thou come to the gate of a city.
 Then enter and enquire for the King of the city; and when thou comest
to his presence, salute him with the salam and kiss his hand: then give
him this scroll and consider well whatso he shall counsel thee." Hasan
replied, "Hearing and obeying," and rose up and mounted the Ifrit's
shoulders, whilst the elders rose and offered up prayers for him and
commended him to the care of Dahnash the Firedrake. And when he had
perched on the Flyer's back the Ifrit soared with him to the very
confines of the sky, till he heard the angels glorifying God in Heaven,
and flew on with him a day and a night till at dawn of the next day he
set him down in a land white as camphor, and went his way, leaving him
there.  When Hasan found himself in the land aforesaid with none by his
side he fared on night and day for ten days, till he came to the gate
of the city in question and entering, enquired for the King.  They
directed him to him and told him that his name was King Hassún,[FN#118]
Lord of the Land of Camphor, and that he had troops and soldiers enough
to fill the earth in its length and breadth.  So he sought audience of
him and, being admitted to his presence, found him a mighty King and
kissed ground between his hands. Quoth the King, "What is thy want?"
Whereupon Hasan kissed the letter and gave it to him.  The King read it
and shook his head awhile, then said to one of his officers, "Take this
youth and lodge him in the house of hospitality."  So he took him and
stablished him in the guest-house, where he tarried three days, eating
and drinking and seeing none but the eunuch who waited on him and who
entertained him with discourse and cheered him with his company,
questioning him of his case and how he came to that city; whereupon he
told him his whole story, and the perilous condition wherein he was. On
the fourth day, that eunuch carried him before the King, who said to
him, "O Hasan, thou comest to me, seeking to enter the Islands of Wak,
as the Shaykh of Shaykhs adviseth me. O my son, I would send thee
thither this very day, but that by the way are many perils and thirsty
wolds full of terrors; yet do thou have patience and naught save fair
shall befal thee, for needs must I devise to bring thee to thy desire,
Inshallah!  Know, O my son, that here is a mighty host,[FN#119]
equipped with arms and steeds and warlike gear, who long to enter the
Wak Islands and lack power thereto.  But, O my son, for the sake of the
Shaykh Abu al-Ruwaysh, son of Bilkis,[FN#120] the daughter of Mu'in, I
may not send thee back to him unfulfilled of thine affair. Presently
there will come to us ships from the Islands of Wak and the first that
shall arrive I will send thee on board of her and give thee in charge
to the sailors, so they may take care of thee and carry thee to the
Islands.  If any question thee of thy case and condition, answer him
saying, 'I am kinsman to King Hassun, Lord of the Land of Camphor;' and
when the ship shall make fast to the shore of the Islands of Wak and
the master shall bid thee land, do thou land.  Now as soon as thou
comest ashore, thou wilt see a multitude of wooden settles all about
the beach, of which do thou choose thee one and crouch under it and
stir not.  And when dark night sets in, thou wilt see an army of women
appear and flock about the goods landed from the ship, and one of them
will sit down on the settle, under which thou hast hidden thyself,
whereupon do thou put forth thy hand to her and take hold of her and
implore her protection. And know thou, O my son, that an she accord
thee protection, thou wilt win thy wish and regain thy wife and
children; but, if she refuse to protect thee, make thy mourning for
thyself and give up all hope of life, and make sure of death for indeed
thou art a dead man.  Understand, O my son, that thou adventurest thy
life and this is all I can do for thee, and—the peace!"—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fourth Night,

She said,  It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that King Hassun
spake these words to Hasan and charged him as we have related, ending
with, "This is all I can do for thee and know that except the Lord of
Heaven had aided thee, thou hadst not come hither!" The youth wept till
he swooned away, and when he recovered, he recited these two couplets,

"A term decreed my lot I 'spy; * And, when its days shall end, I
Though lions fought with me in lair * If Time be mine I'd beat
     them, I!"

Then having ended his verse he kissed the ground before the Sovran and
said to him, "O mighty King, how many days remain till the coming of
the ships?" Replied the other, "In a month's time they will come and
will tarry here, selling their cargueson, other two months, after which
they will return to their own country; so hope not to set out save
after three whole months." Then the King bade him return to the house
of hospitality and bade supply him with all that he needed of meat and
drink and raiment fit for Kings.  Hasan abode in the guest-house a
month, at the end of which the vessels arrived and the King and the
merchants went forth to them, taking Hasan with them. Amongst them he
saw a ship with much people therein, like the shingles for number; none
knew their tale save He who created them.  She was anchored in
mid-harbour and had cocks which transported her lading to the shore. 
So Hasan abode till the crew had landed all the goods and sold and
bought and to the time of departure there wanted but three days;
whereupon the King sent for him and equipped him with all he required
and gave him  great gifts: after which he summoned the captain of the
great ship and said to him, "Take this youth with thee in the vessel,
so none may know of him save thou, and carry him to the Islands of Wak
and leave him there; and bring him not back."  And the Rais said, "To
hear is to obey: with love and gladness!" Then quoth the King to Hasan,
"Look thou tell none of those who are with thee in the ship thine
errand nor discover to them aught of thy case; else thou art a lost
man;" and quoth he, "Hearing and obedience!" With this he farewelled
the King, after he had wished him long life and victory over his
enviers and his enemies; wherefore the King thanked him and wished him
safety and the winning of his wish. Then he committed him to the
captain, who laid him in a chest which he embarked in a dinghy, and
bore him aboard, whilst the folk were busy in breaking bulk and no man
doubted but the chest contained somewhat of merchandise.  After this,
the vessels set sail and fared on without ceasing ten days, and on the
eleventh day they made the land.  So the Rais set Hasan ashore and, as
he walked up the beach, he saw wooden settles[FN#121] without number,
none knew their count save Allah, even as the King had told him. He
went on, till he came to one that had no fellow and hid under it till
nightfall, when there came up a mighty many of women, as they were
locusts over-swarming the land and they marched afoot and armed
cap-ŕ-pie in hauberks and strait-knit coats of mail hending drawn
swords in their hands, who, seeing the merchandise landed from the
ships, busied themselves therewith. Presently they sat down to rest
themselves, and one of them seated herself on the settle under which
Hasan had crouched: whereupon he took hold of the hem of her garment
and laid it on his head and throwing himself before her, fell to
kissing her hands and feet and weeping and crying, "Thy protection! thy
good-will!" Quoth she, "Ho, thou!  Arise and stand up, ere any see thee
and slay thee." So he came forth and springing up kissed her hands and
wept and said to her, "O my mistress, I am under thy protection!";
adding, "Have ruth on one who is parted from his people and wife and
children, one who hath haste to rejoin them and one who adventureth
life and soul for their sake! Take pity on me and be assured that
therefor Paradise will be thy reward; or, an thou wilt not receive me,
I beseech thee, by Allah the Great, the Concealer, to conceal my case!"
The merchants stared to see him talking with her; and she, hearing his
words and beholding his humility, was moved to ruth for him; her heart
inclined to him and she knew that he had not ventured himself and come
to that place, save for a grave matter.  So she said to him, "O my son,
be of good cheer and keep thine eyes cool and clear, hearten thy heart
and take courage and return to thy hiding-place till the coming night,
and Allah shall do as He will." Then she took leave of him and Hasan
crept under the wooden settle as before, whilst the troops lighted
flambeaux of wax mixed with aloes-wood and Nadd-perfume and crude
ambergris[FN#122] and passed the night in sport and delight till the
morning.  At daybreak, the boats returned to the shore and the
merchants busied themselves with buying and selling and the transport
of the goods and gear till nightfall, whilst Hasan lay hidden beneath
the settle, weeping-eyed and woeful-hearted, knowing not what was
decreed to him in the secret preordainment of Allah.  As he was thus,
behold, the merchant-woman with whom he had taken refuge came up to him
and giving him a habergeon and a helmet, a spear, a sword and a gilded
girdle, bade him don them and seat himself on the settle after which
she left him, for fear of the troops. So he arose and donned the
mail-coat and helmet and clasped the girdle about his middle; then he
slung the sword over his shoulder till it hung under his armpit, and
taking the spear in his hand, sat down on that settle, whilst his
tongue neglected not to name Allah Almighty and call on Him for
protection.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan
received the weapons which the merchant-woman had given to him, saying,
"Sit thee upon the settle and let none wot thy case," he armed himself
and took his seat, whilst his tongue neglected not to name Allah
Almighty and to call upon Him for protection.  And behold, there
appeared cressets and lanthorns and flambeaux and up came the army of
women.  So he arose and mingling with them, became as one of them.  A
little before daybreak, they set out, and Hasan with them, and fared on
till they came to their camp, where they dispersed each to her tent,
and Hasan followed one of them and lo! it was hers for whose protection
he had prayed.  When she entered, she threw down her arms and doffed
her hauberk and veil.  So Hasan did the like and looking at his
companion, saw her to be a grizzled old woman blue-eyed and big-nosed,
a calamity of calamities, the foulest of all created things, with face
pock-marked and eyebrows bald, gap-toothed and chap-fallen, with hair
hoary, nose running and mouth slavering;[FN#123] even as saith the like
of her the poet,

"In her cheek-corners nine calamities * Wone, and when shown,
     each one Jehannam is:
Hideous the face and favour foulest foul * As cheek of hog; yea,
     'tis a cesspool phiz."

And indeed she was like a pied snake or a scald she-wolf.  Now when the
old woman looked at Hasan, she marvelled and said, "How came this one
to these lands and in which of the ships was he and how arrived he
hither in safety?" And she fell to questioning him of his case and
admiring at his arrival, whereupon he fell at her feet and rubbed his
face on them and wept till he fainted; and, when he recovered himself,
he recited these couplets,

"When will Time grant we meet, when shall we be * Again united
     after severance stark?
And I shall win my choicest wish and view? * Blame end and Love
     abide without remark?
Were Nile to flow as freely as my tears, * 'Twould leave no
     region but with water-mark:
'Twould overthrow Hijaz and Egypt-land * 'Twould deluge Syria and
     'twould drown Irák.
This, O my love, is caused by thy disdain, * Be kind and promise
     meeting fair and fain!"

Then he took the crone's skirt and laid it on his head and fell to
weeping and craving her protection.  When she saw his ardency and
transport and anguish and distress, her heart softened to him and she
promised him her safeguard, saying, "Have no fear whatsoever." Then she
questioned him of his case and he told her the manner of his coming
thither and all that had befallen him from beginning to end, whereat
she marvelled and said, "This that hath betide thee, methinks, never
betided any save thyself and except thou hadst been vouchsafed the
especial protection of Allah, thou hadst not been saved: but now, O my
son, take comfort and be of good courage; thou hast nothing more to
fear, for indeed thou hast won thy wish and attained thy desire, if it
please the Most High!" Thereat Hasan rejoiced with joy exceeding and
she sent to summon the captains of the army to her presence, and it was
the last day of the month.  So they presented themselves and the old
woman said to them, "Go out and proclaim to all the troops that they
come forth to-morrow at daybreak and let none tarry behind, for whoso
tarryeth shall be slain." They replied, "We hear and we obey," and
going forth, made proclamation to all the host anent a review next
morning, even as she bade them, after which they returned and told her
of this; whereby Hasan knew that she was the Commander-in-chief of the
army and the Viceregent in authority over them; and her name was
Shawahí the Fascinator, entituled Umm al-Dawáhi, or Mother of
Calamities.[FN#124] She ceased not to bid and forbid and Hasan doffed
not off his arms from his body that day.  Now when the morning broke,
all the troops fared forth from their places, but the old woman came
not out with them, and as soon as they were sped and the stead was
clear of them, she said to Hasan, "Draw near unto me, O my
son[FN#125]." So he drew near unto her and stood between her hands. 
Quoth she, "Why and wherefore hast thou adventured thyself so boldly as
to enter this land, and how came thy soul to consent to its own
undoing?  Tell me the truth and the whole truth and fear aught of ill
come of it, for thou hast my plighted word and I am moved to compassion
for thy case and pity thee and have taken thee under my protection. So,
if thou tell me the truth, I will help thee to win thy wish, though it
involve the undoing of souls and the destruction of bodies; and since
thou hast come to seek me, no hurt shall betide thee from me, nor will
I suffer any to have at thee with harm of all who be in the Islands of
Wak." So he told her his tale from first to last, acquainting her with
the matter of his wife and of the birds; how he had captured her as his
prize from amongst the ten and married her and abode with her, till she
had borne him two sons, and how she had taken her children and flown
away with them, whenas she knew the way to the feather-dress.  Brief,
he concealed from her no whit of his case, from the beginning to that
day.  But when Shawahi heard his relation, she shook her head and said
to him, "Glory be to God who hath brought thee hither in safety and
made thee hap upon me!  For, hadst thou happened on any but myself,
thou hadst lost thy life without winning thy wish; but the truth of
thine intent and thy fond affection and the excess of thy love-longing
for thy wife and yearning for thy children, these it was that have
brought thee to the attainment of thine aim.  Didst thou not love her
and love her to distraction, thou hadst not thus imperilled thyself,
and Alhamdolillah—Praised be Allah—for thy safety! Wherefore it
behoveth us to do thy desire and conduce to thy quest, so thou mayst
presently attain that thou seekest, if it be the will of Almighty
Allah. But know, O my son, that thy wife is not here, but in the
seventh of the Islands of Wak and between us and it is seven months'
journey, night and day. From here we go to an island called the Land of
Birds, wherein, for the loud crying of the birds and the flapping of
their wings, one cannot hear other speak."—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the old woman
said to Hasan, "Indeed thy wife is in the Seventh Island,[FN#126] the
greatest amongst the Islands of Wak and betwixt us and it is a
seven-months' journey.  From here we fare for the Land of Birds,
whereon for the force of their flying and the flapping of their wings,
we cannot hear one other speak. Over that country we journey night and
day, eleven days, after which we come forth of it to another called the
Land of Ferals where, for stress of roaring of lions and howling of
wolves and laughing of hyćnas and the crying of other beasts of prey we
shall hear naught, and therein we travel twenty days' journey. Then we
issue therefrom and come to a third country, called the Land of the
Jánn, where, for stress of the crying of the Jinn and the flaming of
fires and the flight of sparks and smoke from their mouths and the
noise of their groaning and their arrogance in blocking up the road
before us, our ears will be deafened and our eyes blinded, so that we
shall neither hear nor see, nor dare any look behind him, or he
perisheth: but there horseman boweth head on saddle-bow and raiseth it
not for three days.  After this, we abut upon a mighty mountain and a
running river contiguous with the Isles of Wak, which are seven in
number and the extent whereof is a whole year's journey for a well-girt
horseman.  And thou must know, O my son, that these troops are all
virgin girls, and that the ruler over us is a woman of the Archipelago
of Wak. On the bank of the river aforesaid is another mountain, called
Mount Wak, and it is thus named by reason of a tree which beareth
fruits like heads of the Sons of Adam.[FN#127] When the sun riseth on
them, the heads cry out all, saying in their cries:— 'Wak!  Wak! Glory
be to the Creating King, Al-Khallák!' And when we hear their crying, we
know that the sun is risen.  In like manner, at sundown, the heads set
up the same cry, 'Wak! Wak!  Glory to Al-Khallak!' and so we know that
the sun hath set.  No man may abide with us or reach to us or tread our
earth; and betwixt us and the abiding-place of the Queen who ruleth
over us is a month's journey from this shore, all the lieges whereof
are under her hand, as are also the tribes of the Jinn, Marids and
Satans, while of the warlocks none kenneth the number save He who
created them.  Wherefore, an thou be afraid, I will send with thee one
who will convey thee to the coast and there bring one who will embark
thee on board a ship that bear thee to thine own land.  But an thou be
content to tarry with us, I will not forbid thee and thou shalt be with
me in mine eye,[FN#128] till thou win thy wish, Inshallah!" Quoth he,
"O my lady, I will never quit thee till I foregather with my wife or
lose my life!"; and quoth she, "This is a light matter; be of good
heart, for soon shalt thou come to thy desire, Allah willing; and there
is no help but that I let the Queen know of thee, that she may help
thee to attain thine aim." Hasan blessed her and kissed her head and
hands, thanking her for her good deed and exceeding kindness and firm
will.  Then he set out with her, pondering the issue of his case and
the horrors of his strangerhood; wherefore he fell a-weeping and
a-wailing and recited these couplets,

"A Zephyr bloweth from the lover's site; * And thou canst view me
     in the saddest plight:
The Night of Union is as brilliant morn; * And black the
     Severance-day as blackest night:
Farewelling friend is sorrow sorest sore * Parting from lover's
     merest undelight.
I will not blame her harshness save to her, * And 'mid mankind
     nor friend nor fere I sight:
How can I be consoled for loss of you? * Base censor's blame
     shall not console my sprite!
O thou in charms unique, unique's my love; * O peerless thou, my
     heart hath peerless might!
Who maketh semblance that he loveth you * And dreadeth blame is
     most blame-worthy wight."

Then the old woman bade beat the kettle-drums for departure and the
army set out.  Hasan fared with her, drowned in the sea of solicitude
and reciting verses like those above, whilst she strave to comfort him
and exhorted him to patience; but he awoke not from his tristesse and
heeded not her exhortations. They journeyed thus till they came to the
boundaries of the Land of Birds[FN#129] and when they entered it, it
seemed to Hasan as if the world were turned topsy-turvy for the
exceeding clamour.  His head ached and his mind was dazed, his eyes
were blinded and his ears deafened, and he feared with exceeding fear
and made certain of death, saying to himself, "If this be the Land of
Birds, how will be the Land of Beasts?" But, when the crone hight
Shawahi saw him in this plight, she laughed at him, saying, "O my son,
if this be thy case in the first island, how will it fare with thee,
when thou comest to the others?"  So he prayed to Allah and humbled
himself before the Lord, beseeching Him to assist him against that
wherewith He had afflicted him and bring him to his wishes; and they
ceased not going till they passed out of the Land of Birds and,
traversing the Land of Beasts, came to the Land of the Jann which when
Hasan saw, he was sore affrighted and repented him of having entered it
with them.  But he sought aid of Allah the Most High and fared on with
them, till they were quit of the Land of the Jann and came to the river
and set down their loads at the foot of a vast mountain and a lofty,
and pitched their tents by the stream-bank.  Then they rested and ate
and drank and slept in security, for they were come to their own
country.  On the morrow the old woman set Hasan a couch of alabaster,
inlaid with pearls and jewels and nuggets of red gold, by the
river-side, and he sat down thereon, having first bound his face with a
chin-kerchief, that discovered naught of him but his eyes.  Then she
bade proclaim among the troops that they should all assemble before her
tent and put off their clothes and go down into the stream and wash;
and this she did that she might parade before him all the girls, so
haply his wife should be amongst them and he know her.  So the whole
army mustered before her and putting off their clothes, went down into
the stream, and Hasan seated on his couch watched them washing their
white skins and frolicking and making merry, whilst they took no heed
of his inspecting them, deeming him to be of the daughters of the
Kings. When he beheld them stripped of their clothes, his chord
stiffened for that looking at them mother-naked he saw what was between
their thighs, and that of all kinds, soft and rounded, plump and
cushioned; large-lipped, perfect, redundant and ample,[FN#130] and
their faces were as moons and their hair as night upon day, for that
they were of the daughters of the Kings. When they were clean, they
came up out of the water, stark naked, as the moon on the night of
fullness and the old woman questioned Hasan of them, company by
company, if his wife were among them; but, as often as she asked him of
a troop, he made answer, "She is not among these, O my lady."—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventh Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the old woman
questioned Hasan of the girls, company after company, if haply his wife
were among them; but as often as she asked him of a troop, he made
answer, "She is not among these, O my lady!" Last of all, there came up
a damsel, attended by ten slave-girls and thirty waiting-women, all of
them high-bosomed maidens. They put off their clothes and went down
into the river, where the damsel fell to riding the high horse over her
women, throwing them down and ducking them. On this wise she continued
for a full hour, after which all came up out of the water and sat down;
and they brought her napkins[FN#131] of gold-purfled silk, with which
she dried herself.  Then they brought her clothes and jewels and
ornaments of the handiwork of the Jinn, and she donned them and rose
and walked with graceful pace among the troops, she and her maidens. 
When Hasan saw her, his heart was ready to fly from his breast and he
said, "Verily this girl is the likest of all folk to the bird I saw in
the basin atop of the palace of my sisters the Princesses, and she
lorded it over her lieges even as doth this one." The old woman asked,
"O Hasan, is this thy wife?"; and he answered, "No, by thy life, O my
lady; this is not my wife, nor ever in my life have I set eyes on her;
neither among all the girls I have seen in these islands is there the
like of my wife nor her match for symmetry and grace and beauty and
loveliness!" Then said Shawaki, "Describe her to me and acquaint me
with all her attributes, that I may have her in my mind; for I know
every girl in the Islands of Wak, being commander of the army of maids
and governor over them; wherefore, an thou describe her to me, I shall
know her and will contrive for thee to take her." Quoth he, "My wife
hath the fairest face and a form all grace; smooth is she of cheeks and
high of breasts with eyes of liquid light, calves and thighs plump to
sight, teeth snowy white, with dulcet speech dight; in speech soft and
bland as she were a willow-wand; her gifts are a moral and lips are red
as coral; her eyes wear natural Kohl-dye and her lower labia[FN#132] in
softness lie.  On her right cheek is a mole and on her waist, under her
navel, is a sign; her face shines as the rondure of the moon in sheen,
her waist is slight, her hips a heavy weight, and the water of her
mouth the sick doth heal, as it were Kausar or Salsabil."[FN#133] Said
the old woman, "Give me an increased account of her, Allah increase
thee of passion for her!" Quoth he, "My wife hath a face the fairest
fair and oval cheeks the rarest rare; neck long and spare and eyes that
Kohl wear; her side face shows the Anemones of Nu'uman, her mouth is
like a seal of cornelian and flashing teeth that lure and stand one in
stead of cup and ewer.  She is cast in the mould of pleasantness and
between her thighs is the throne of the Caliphate, there is no such
sanctuary among the Holy Places; as saith in its praise the poet,

"The name of what drave me distraught * Hath letters renowned
     among men:
A four into five multiplied * And a multiplied six into

Then Hasan wept and chanted the following Mawwál,[FN#135]

"O heart, an lover false thee, shun the parting bane * Nor to
     forgetfulness thy thoughts constrain:
Be patient; thou shalt bury all thy foes; * Allah ne'er falseth
     man of patience fain."

And this also,

"An wouldst be life,long safe, vaunt not delight; * Never
     despair, nor wone o'erjoyed in sprite!
Forbear, rejoice not, mourn not o'er thy plight * And in ill day
     'Have not we oped?'—recite."[FN#136]

Thereupon the old woman bowed her head groundwards awhile, then,
raising it, said, "Laud be to the Lord, the Mighty of Award! Indeed I
am afflicted with thee, O Hasan!  Would Heaven I had never known thee! 
This woman, whom thou describest to me as thy wife, I know by
description and I know her to be none other than the eldest daughter of
the Supreme King, she who ruleth over all the Islands of Wak.  So open
both eyes and consider thy case; and if thou be asleep, awake; for, if
this woman be indeed thy wife, it is impossible for thee ever to obtain
her, and though thou come to her, yet couldst thou not avail to her
possession, since between thee and her the distance is as that between
earth and Heaven.  Wherefore, O my son, return presently and cast not
thyself into destruction nor cast me with thee; for meseemeth thou hast
no lot in her; so return whence thou camest lest our lives be lost." 
And she feared for herself and for him.  When Hasan heard her words, he
wept till he fainted and she left not sprinkling water on his face,
till he came to himself, when he continued to weep, so that he drenched
his dress with tears, for the much cark and care and chagrin which
betided him by reason of her words.  And indeed he despaired of life
and said to the old woman, "O my lady, and how shall I go back, after
having come hither?  Verily, I thought not thou wouldst forsake me nor
fail of the winning of my wish, especially as thou art the
Commander-in-chief of the army of the girls." Answered Shawahl, "O my
son, I doubted not but thy wife was a maid of the maids, and had I
known she was the King's daughter, I had not suffered thee to come
hither nor had I shown the troops to thee, for all the love I bear
thee.  But now, O my son, thou hast seen all the girls naked; so tell
me which of them pleaseth thee and I will give her to thee, in lieu of
thy wife, and do thou put it that thy wife and children are dead and
take her and return to thine own country in safety, ere thou fall into
the King's hand and I have no means of delivering thee.  So, Allah upon
thee, O my son, hearken unto me.  Choose thyself one of these damsels,
in the stead of yonder woman, and return presently to thy country in
safety and cause me not quaff the cup of thine anguish!  For, by Allah,
thou hast cast thyself into affliction sore and peril galore, wherefrom
none may avail to deliver thee evermore!" But Hasan hung down his head
and wept with long weeping and recited these couplets,

"'Blame not!' said I to all who blamčd me; * 'Mine eye-lids
     naught but tears were made to dree:'
The tears that brim these orbs have overflowed * My checks, for
     lovers and love's cruelty.
Leave me to love though waste this form of me! * For I of Love
     adore the insanity:
And, Oh my dearling, passion grows on me * For you—and you, why
     grudge me clemency?
You wronged me after swearing troth and plight, * Falsed my
     companionship and turned to flee:
And cup of humbling for your rigours sore * Ye made me drain what
     day departed ye:
Then melt, O heart, with longing for their sight * And, O mine
     eyes, with crowns of tears be dight."

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

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the old
woman said to Hasan, "By Allah, O my son, hearken to my words!  Choose
thee one of these girls in lieu of thy wife and presently return to thy
country in safety," he hung down his head and recited the couplets
quoted above.  Then he wept till he swooned away and Shawahl sprinkled
water on his face till he revived, when she addressed him, "O my lord,
I have no shift left; because if I carry thee to the city thy life is
lost and mine also: for, when the Queen cometh to know of this, she
will blame me for admitting thee into her lands and islands, whereto
none of Adam's sons hath access, and will slay me for bringing thee
with me and for suffering mortal to look upon the virgins seen by thee
in the sea, whom ne'er touched male, neither approached mate." And
Hasan sware that he had never looked on them with evil of eye.  She
resumed, "O my son, hearken to me and return to thy country and I will
give thee wealth and treasures and things of price, such as shall
suffice thee for all the women in the world. Moreover, I will give thee
a girl of the best of them, so lend an ear to my words and return
presently and imperil not thyself; indeed I counsel thee with good
counsel." But he wept and rubbed both cheeks against her feet, saying,
"O my lady and mistress and coolth of mine eyes, how can I turn back
now that I have made my way hither, without the sight of those I
desire, and now that I have come near the beloved's site, hoping for
meeting forthright, so haply there may be a portion in reunion to my
plight?"  And he improvised these couplets,

"O Kings of beauty, grace to prisoner ta'en * Of eyelids fit to
     rule the Chosroës' reign:
Ye pass the wafts of musk in perfumed breath; * Your cheeks the
     charms of blooming rose disdain.
The softest Zephyr breathes where pitch ye camp * And thence
     far-scattered sweetness fills the plain:
Censor of me, leave blame and stint advice! * Thou bringest
     wearying words and wisdom vain:
Why heat my passion with this flame and up- * braid me when
     naught thou knowest of its bane?
Captured me eyes with passion maladifs, * And overthrew me with
     Love's might and main:
I scatter tears the while I scatter verse; * You are my theme for
     rhyme and prosy strain.
Melted my vitals glow of rosy cheeks * And in the Lazá-lowe my
     heart is lain:
Tell me, an I leave to discourse of you, * What speech my breast
     shall broaden?
Tell me deign! Life-long I loved the lovelings fair, but ah, * To
     grant my wish eke Allah must be fain!"

Hearing his verses the old woman was moved to ruth for him and Allah
planted the seed of affection for him in her heart; so coming up to him
she consoled him, saying, "Be of good cheer and keep thine eyes cool
and clear and put away trouble from thy thought, for, by Allah, I will
venture my life with thee, till thou attain thine aim or death undo
me!" With this, Hasan's heart was comforted and his bosom broadened and
he sat talking with the old woman till the end of the day, when all the
girls dispersed, some entering their town-mansions and others nighting
in the tents.  Then the old woman carried him into the city and lodged
him in a place apart, lest any should come to know of him and tell the
Queen of him and she should slay him and slay her who had brought him
thither. Moreover, she served him herself and strave to put him in fear
of the awful majesty of the Supreme King, his wife's father; whilst he
wept before her and said, "O my lady, I choose death for myself and
loathe this worldly life, if I foregather not with my wife and
children: I have set my existence on the venture and will either attain
my aim or die." So the old woman fell to pondering the means of
bringing him and his wife together and casting about how to do in the
case of this unhappy one, who had thrown himself into destruction and
would not be diverted from his purpose by fear or aught else; for,
indeed he recked not of his life and the sayer of bywords saith, "Lover
in nowise hearkeneth he to the speech of the man who is fancy-free."
Now the name of the Queen of the island wherein they were was Núr
al-Hudŕ,[FN#137] eldest daughter of the Supreme King, and she had six
virgin sisters, abiding with their father, whose capital and court were
in the chief city of that region and who had made her ruler over all
the lands and islands of Wak.  So when the ancient dame saw Hasan on
fire with yearning after his wife and children, she rose up and
repaired to the palace and going in to Queen Nur al-Huda kissed ground
before her; for she had a claim on her favour because she had reared
the King's daughters one and all and had authority over each and every
of them and was high in honour and consideration with them and with the
King.  Nur al-Huda rose to her as she entered and embracing her, seated
her by her side and asked her of her journey.  She answered, "By 
Allah, O my lady 'twas a blessed journey and I have brought thee a gift
which I will presently present to thee," adding, "O my daughter, O
Queen of the age and the time, I have a favour to crave of thee and I
fain would discover it to thee, that thou mayst help me to accomplish
it, and but for my confidence that thou wilt not gainsay me therein, I
would not expose it to thee." Asked the Queen, "And what is thy need?
Expound it to me, and I will accomplish it to thee, for I and my
kingdom and troops are all at thy commandment and disposition."
Therewithal the old woman quivered as quivereth the reed on a day when
the storm-wind is abroad and saying in herself, "O[FN#138] Protector,
protect me from the Queen's mischief!"[FN#139] fell down before her and
acquainted her with Hasan's case, saying, "O my lady, a man, who had
hidden himself under my wooden settle on the seashore, sought my
protection; so I took him under my safeguard and carried him with me
among the army of girls armed and accoutred so that none might know
him, and brought him into the city; and indeed I have striven to
affright him with thy fierceness, giving him to know of thy power and
prowess; but, as often as I threatened him, he weepeth and reciteth
verses and sayeth, 'Needs must I have my wife and children or die, and
I will not return to my country without them.' And indeed he hath
adventured himself and come to the Islands of Wak, and never in all my
days saw I mortal heartier of heart than he or doughtier of derring-do,
save that love hath mastered him to the utmost of mastery."—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Eight Hundred and Ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the old
woman related to Queen Nur al-Huda the adventure of Hasan, ending with,
"Never I saw any one heartier of heart than he save that love hath
mastered him to the utmost of mastery," the Queen, after lending an
attentive ear and comprehending the case, waxed wroth at her with
exceeding wrath and bowed her head awhile groundwards; then, raising
it, she looked at Shawahi and said to her, "O ill-omened beldam, art
thou come to such a pass of lewdness that thou carriest males, men,
with thee into the Islands of Wak and bringest them into me, unfearing
of my mischief?  Who hath foregone thee with this fashion, that thou
shouldst do thus?  By the head of the King, but for thy claim on me for
fosterage and service, I would forthwith do both him and thee to die
the foulest of deaths, that travellers might take warning by thee, O
accursed, lest any other do the like of this outrageous deed thou hast
done, which none durst hitherto!  But go and bring him hither
forthright, that I may see him; or I will strike off thy head, O
accursed." So the old woman went out from her, confounded, unknowing
whither she went and saying, "All this calamity hath Allah driven upon
me from this Queen because of Hasan!" and going in to him, said, "Rise,
speak with the Queen, O wight whose last hour is at hand!" So he rose
and went with her, whilst his tongue ceased not to call upon Almighty
Allah and say, "O my God, be gracious to me in Thy decrees and deliver
me from this Thine affliction!"[FN#140] And Shawahi went with him
charging him by the way how he should speak with the Queen.  When he
stood before Nur al-Huda, he found that she had donned the
chinveil[FN#141]; so he kissed ground before her and saluted her with
the salam, improvising these two couplets,

"God make thy glory last in joy of life; * Allah confirm the
     boons he deigned bestow:
Thy grace and grandeur may our Lord increase * And aye Th'
     Almighty aid thee o'er thy foe!"

When he ended his verse Nur al-Huda bade the old woman ask him
questions before her, that she might hear his answers: so she said to
him, "The Queen returneth thy salam-greeting and saith to thee, 'What
is thy name and that of thy country, and what are the names of thy wife
and children, on whose account thou art come hither?"' Quoth he, and
indeed he had made firm his heart and destiny aided him, "O Queen of
the age and tide and peerless jewel of the epoch and the time, my name
is Hasan the fullfilled of sorrow, and my native city is Bassorah.  I
know not the name of my wife[FN#142] but my children's names are Násir
and Mansúr." When the Queen heard his reply and his provenance, she
bespoke him herself and said, "And whence took she her children?" He
replied, "O Queen, she took them from the city of Baghdad and the
palace of the Caliphate."  Quoth Nur al-Huda, "And did she say naught
to thee at the time she flew away?;" and quoth he, "Yes; she said to my
mother, 'Whenas thy son cometh to thee and the nights of severance upon
him longsome shall be and he craveth meeting and reunion to see, and
whenas the breezes of love and longing shake him dolefully let him come
in the Islands of Wak to me.'"  Whereupon Queen Nur al-Huda shook her
head and said to him, "Had she not desired thee she had not said to thy
mother this say, and had she not yearned for reunion with thee, never
had she bidden thee to her stead nor acquainted thee with her
abiding-place."  Rejoined Hasan, "O mistress of Kings and asylum of
prince and pauper, whatso happened I have told thee and have concealed
naught thereof, and I take refuge from evil with Allah and with thee;
wherefore oppress me not, but have compassion on me and earn recompense
and requital for me in the world to come, and aid me to regain my wife
and children.  Grant me my urgent need and cool mine eyes with my
children and help me to the sight of them." Then he wept and wailed and
lamenting his lot recited these two couplets,

"Yea, I will laud thee while the ring-dove moans, * Though fail
     my wish of due and lawful scope:
Ne'er was I whirled in bliss and joys gone by * Wherein I found
     thee not both root and rope."[FN#143]

The Queen shook her head and bowed it in thought a long time; then,
raising it, she said to Hasan (and indeed she was wroth), "I have ruth
on thee and am resolved to show thee in review all the girls in the
city and in the provinces of my island; and in case thou know thy wife,
I will deliver her to thee; but, an thou know her not and know not her
place, I will put thee to death and crucify thee over the old woman's
door." Replied Hasan, "I accept this from thee, O Queen of the Age, and
am content to submit to this thy condition. There is no Majesty and
there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!"  And he
recited these couplets,

"You've roused my desire and remain at rest,— * Waked my wounded
     lids while you slept with zest.
And ye made me a vow ye would not hang back * But your guile when
     you chained me waxt manifest.
I loved you in childhood unknowing Love; * Then slay me not who
     am sore opprest.
Fear ye not from Allah when slaying a friend * Who gazeth on
     stars when folk sleep their best?
By Allah, my kinsmen, indite on my tomb * 'This man was the slave
     of Love's harshest hest!'
Haps a noble youth, like me Love's own thrall, * When he sees my
     grave on my name shall call."

Then Queen Nur al-Huda commanded that not a girl should abide in the
city but should come up to the palace and pass in review before Hasan
and moreover she bade Shawahi go down in person and bring them up
herself.  Accordingly all the maidens in the city presented themselves
before the Queen, who caused them to go in to Hasan, hundred after
hundred, till there was no girl left in the place, but she had shown
her to him; yet he saw not his wife amongst them. Then said she to him,
"Seest thou her amongst these?"; and he replied, "By thy life, O Queen,
she is not amongst them." With this she was sore enraged against him
and said to the old woman, "Go in and bring out all who are in the
palace and show them to him." So she displayed to him every one of the
palace-girls, but he saw not his wife among them and said to the Queen,
"By the life of thy head, O Queen, she is not among these." Whereat the
Queen was wroth and cried out at those around her, saying, "Take him
and hale him along, face to earth, and cut off his head, least any
adventure himself after him and intrude upon us in our country and spy
out our estate by thus treading the soil of our islands." So they threw
him down on his face and dragged him along; then, covering his eyes
with his skirt, stood at his head with bared brands awaiting royal
permission. Thereupon Shawahi came forward and kissing the ground
before the Queen, took the hem of her garment and laid it on her head,
saying, "O Queen, by my claim for fosterage, be not hasty with him,
more by token of thy knowledge that this poor wretch is a stranger, who
hath adventured himself and suffered what none ever suffered before
him, and Allah (to whom belong Might and Majesty,) preserved him from
death, for that his life was ordained to be long.  He heard of thine
equity and entered thy city and guarded site;[FN#144] wherefore, if
thou put him to death, the report will dispread abroad of thee, by
means of the travellers, that thou hatest strangers and slayest them. 
He is in any case at thy mercy and the slain of thy sword, if his wife
be not found in thy dominions; and whensoever thou desireth his
presence, I can bring him back to thee.  Moreover, in very sooth I took
him under my protection only of my trust in thy magnanimity through my
claim on thee for fosterage, so that I engaged to him that thou wouldst
bring him to his desire, for my knowledge of thy justice and quality of
mercy.  But for this, I had not brought him into thy kingdom; for I
said to myself: 'The Queen will take pleasure in looking upon him, and
hearing him speak his verses and his sweet discourse and eloquent which
is like unto pearls strung on string.' Moreover, he hath entered our
land and eaten of our meat; wherefore he hath a claim upon us."—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

When it was the Eight Hundred and Tenth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Queen
Nur al-Huda bade her pages seize Hasan and smite his neck, the old
woman, Shawahi, began to reason with her and say, "Verily he hath
entered our land and eaten of our meat, wherefore he hath a claim upon
us, the more especially since I promised him to bring him in company
with thee; and thou knowest that, parting is a grievous ill and
severance hath power to kill, especially separation from children.  Now
he hath seen all our women, save only thyself; so do thou show him thy
face?" The Queen smiled and said, "How can he be my husband and have
had children by me, that I should show him my face?" Then she made them
bring Hasan before her and when he stood in the presence, she unveiled
her face, which when he saw, he cried out with a great cry and fell
down fainting.  The old woman ceased not to tend him, till he came to
himself and as soon as he revived he recited these couplets,

"O breeze that blowest from the land Irak * And from their
     corners whoso cry 'Wak!  Wak!'
Bear news of me to friends and say for me * I've tasted
     passion-food of bitter smack.
O dearlings of my love, show grace and ruth * My heart is melted
     for this severance-rack."

When he ended his verse he rose and looking on the Queen's face, cried
out with a great cry, for stress whereof the palace was like to fall
upon all therein. Then he swooned away again and the old woman ceased
not to tend him till he revived, when she asked him what ailed him and
he answered, "In very sooth this Queen is either my wife or else the
likest of all folk to my wife."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eleventh Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the old
woman asked Hasan what ailed him, he answered, "In very sooth this
Queen is either my wife or else the likest of all folk to my wife."
Quoth Nur al-Huda to the old woman, "Woe to thee, O nurse! This
stranger is either Jinn-mad or out of his mind, for he stareth me in
the face with wide eyes and saith I am his wife." Quoth the old woman,
"O Queen, indeed he is excusable; so blame him not, for the saying
saith, 'For the lovesick is no remedy and alike are the madman and
he.'" And Hasan wept with sore weeping and recited these two couplets,

"I sight their track and pine for longing love; * And o'er their
     homesteads weep I and I yearn:
And I pray Heaven who willčd we should part, * Will deign to
     grant us boon of safe return."

Then said Hasan to the Queen once more, "By Allah, thou art not my
wife, but thou art the likest of all folk to her!" Hereupon Nur al-Huda
laughed till she fell backwards and rolled round on her side.[FN#145]
Then she said to him, "O my friend, take thy time and observe me
attentively: answer me at thy leisure what I shall ask thee and put
away from thee insanity and perplexity and inadvertency for relief is
at hand." Answered Hasan, "O mistress of Kings and asylum of all
princes and paupers, when I looked upon thee, I was distracted, seeing
thee to be either my wife or the likest of all folk to her; but now ask
me whatso thou wilt." Quoth she, "What is it in thy wife that
resembleth me?"; and quoth he, "O my lady, all that is in thee of
beauty and loveliness, elegance and amorous grace, such as the symmetry
of thy shape and the sweetness of thy speech and the blushing of thy
cheeks and the jutting of thy breasts and so forth, all resembleth her
and thou art her very self in thy faculty of parlance and the fairness
of thy favour and the brilliancy of thy brow."[FN#146] When the Queen
heard this, she smiled and gloried in her beauty and loveliness and her
cheeks reddened and her eyes wantoned; then she turned to Shawahi Umm
Dawahi and said to her, "O my mother, carry him back to the place where
he tarried with thee and tend him thyself, till I examine into his
affair; for, an he be indeed a man of manliness and mindful of
friendship and love and affection, it behoveth we help him to win his
wish, more by token that he hath sojourned in our country and eaten of
our victual, not to speak of the hardships of travel he hath suffered
and the travail and horrors he hath undergone.  But, when thou hast
brought him to thy house, commend him to the care of thy dependents and
return to me in all haste; and Allah Almighty willing![FN#147] all
shall be well." Thereupon Shawahi carried him back to her lodging and
charged her handmaids and servants and suite wait upon him and bring
him all he needed nor fail in what was his due. Then she returned to
Queen Nur al-Huda, who bade her don her arms and set out, taking with
her a thousand doughty horsemen.  So she obeyed and donned her war-gear
and having collected the thousand riders reported them ready to the
Queen, who bade her march upon the city of the Supreme King, her
father, there to alight at the abode of her youngest sister, Manár
al-Saná[FN#148] and say to her, "Clothe thy two sons in the coats of
mail which their aunt hath made them and send them to her; for she
longeth for them." Moreover the Queen charged her keep Hasan's affair
secret and say to Manar al-Sana, after securing her children, "Thy
sister inviteth thee to visit her." "Then," she continued, "bring the
children to me in haste and let her follow at her leisure.  Do thou
come by a road other than her road and journey night and day and beware
of discovering this matter to any.  And I swear by all manner oaths
that, if my sister prove to be his wife and it appear that her children
are his, I will not hinder him from taking her and them and departing
with them to his own country."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twelfth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Oueen
said, "I swear by Allah and by all manner of oaths that if she prove to
be his wife, I will not hinder him from taking her but will aid him
thereto and eke to departing with them to his mother-land." And the old
woman put faith in her words, knowing not what she purposed in her
mind, for the wicked Jezebel had resolved that if she were not his wife
she would slay him; but if the children resembled him, she would
believe him.  The Queen resumed, "O my mother, an my thought tell me
true, my sister Manar al-Sana is his wife, but Allah alone is
All-knowing! seeing that these traits of surpassing beauty and
excelling grace, of which he spoke, are found in none except my sisters
and especially in the youngest." The old woman kissed her hand and
returning to Hasan, told him what the Queen had said, whereat he was
like to fly for joy and coming up to her, kissed her head. Quoth she,
"O my son, kiss not my head, but kiss me on the mouth and be this kiss
by way of sweetmeat for thy salvation.[FN#149] Be of good cheer and
keep thine eyes cool and clear and grudge not to kiss my mouth, for I
and only I was the means of thy foregathering with her.  So take
comfort, and hearten thy heart and broaden thy breast and gladden thy
glance and console thy soul for, Allah willing, thy desire shall be
accomplished at my hand." So saying, she bade him farewell and
departed, whilst he recited these two couplets,

"Witnesses unto love of thee I've four; * And wants each case two
     witnesses; no more!
A heart aye fluttering, limbs that ever quake, * A wasted frame
     and tongue that speech forswore."

And also these two,

"Two things there be, an blood-tears thereover * Wept eyes till
     not one trace thou couldst discover,
Eyes ne'er could pay the tithe to them is due * The prime of
     youth and severance from lover."

Then the old woman armed herself and, taking with her a thousand
weaponed horsemen, set out and journeyed till she came to the island
and the city where dwelt the Lady Manar al-Sana and between which and
that of her sister Queen Nur al-Huda was three days' journey.  When
Shawahi reached the city, she went in to the Princess and saluting her,
gave her her sister's salam and acquainted her with the Queen's longing
for her and her children and that she reproached her for not visiting
her. Quoth Manar al-Sana, "Verily, I am beholden to my sister and have
failed of my duty to her in not visiting her, but I will do so
forthright." Then she bade pitch her tents without the city and took
with her for her sister a suitable present of rare things. Presently,
the King her father looked out of a window of his palace, and seeing
the tents pitched by the road, asked of them, and they answered him,
"The Princess Manar al-Sana hath pitched her tents by the way-side,
being minded to visit her sister Queen Nur al-Huda." When the  King
heard this, he equipped troops to escort her to her sister and brought
out to her from his treasuries meat and drink and monies and jewels and
rarities which beggar description.  Now the King had seven daughters,
all sisters-german by one mother and father except the youngest: the
eldest was called Núr al-Hudŕ, the second Najm al-Sabáh, the third
Shams al-Zuhŕ, the fourth Shajarat al-Durr, the fifth Kút al-Kulúb, the
sixth Sharaf al-Banát and the youngest Manar al-Sana, Hasan's wife, who
was their sister by the father's side only.[FN#150]  Anon the old woman
again presented herself and kissed ground before the Princess, who said
to her, "Hast thou any need, O my mother?"  Quoth Shawahi, "Thy sister,
Queen Nur al-Huda, biddeth thee clothe thy sons in the two habergeons
which she fashioned for them and send them to her by me, and I will
take them and forego thee with them and be the harbinger of glad
tidings and the announcer of thy coming to her." When the Princess
heard these words, her colour changed and she bowed her head a long
while, after which she shook it and looking up, said to the old woman,
"O my mother, my vitals tremble and my heart fluttereth when thou
namest my children; for, from the time of their birth none hath looked
on their faces either Jinn or man, male or female, and I am jealous for
them of the zephyr when it breatheth in the night." Exclaimed the old
woman, "What words are these, O my lady?  Dost thou fear for them from
thy sister?"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the old woman
said to the Princess Manar al-Sana, "What words be these, O my lady? 
Dost thou fear for them from thy sister? Allah safeguard thy reason! 
Thou mayst not cross the Queen's majesty in this matter, for she would
be wroth with thee.  However, O my lady, the children are young, and
thou art excusable in fearing for them, for those that love well are
wont to deem ill: but, O my daughter, thou knowest my tenderness and
mine affection for thee and thy children, for indeed I reared thee
before them.  I will take them in my charge and make my cheek their
pillow and open my heart and set them within, nor is it needful to
charge me with care of them in the like of this case; so be of cheerful
heart and tearless eye and send them to her, for, at the most, I shall
but precede thee with them a day or at most two days."  And she ceased
not to urge her, till she gave way, fearing her sister's fury and
unknowing what lurked for her in the dark future, and consented to send
them with the old woman.  So she called them and bathed them and
equipped them and changed their apparel.  Then she clad them in the two
little coats of mail and delivered them to Shawahi, who took them and
sped on with them like a bird, by another road than that by which their
mother should travel, even as the Queen had charged her; nor did she
cease to fare on with all diligence, being fearful for them, till she
came in sight of Nur al-Huda's city, when she crossed the river and
entering the town, carried them in to their aunt.  The Queen rejoiced
at their sight and embraced them, and pressed them to her breast; after
which she seated them, one upon the right thigh and the other upon the
left; and turning round said to the old woman, "Fetch me Hasan
forthright, for I have granted him my safeguard and have spared him
from my sabre and he hath sought asylum in my house and taken up his
abode in my courts, after having endured hardships and horrors and
passed through all manner mortal risks, each terribler than other; yet
hitherto is he not safe from drinking the cup of death and from cutting
off his breath." —And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fourteenth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Queen
Nur al-Huda bade the old woman bring Hasan she said, "Verily he hath
endured hardships and horrors and passed through all manner mortal
risks each terribler than other; yet hitherto he is not safe from death
and from the cutting off of his breath." Replied Shawahi, "An I bring
him to thee, wilt thou reunite him with these his children?  Or, if
they prove not his, wilt thou pardon him and restore him to his own
country?" Hearing these her words the Queen waxed exceeding wroth and
cried to her, "Fie upon thee, O ill-omened old woman!  How long wilt
thou false us in the matter of this strange man who hath dared to
intrude himself upon us and hath lifted our veil and pried into our
conditions? Say me: thinkest thou that he shall come to our land and
look upon our faces and betray our honour, and after return in safety
to his own country and expose our affairs to his people, wherefore our
report will be bruited abroad among all the Kings of the quarters of
the earth and the merchants will journey bearing tidings of us in all
directions, saying, 'A mortal entered the Isles of Wak and traversed
the Land of the Jinn and the lands of the Wild Beasts and the Islands
of Birds and set foot in the country of the Warlocks and the Enchanters
and returned in safety?' This shall never be; no, never; and I swear by
Him who made the Heavens and builded them; yea, by Him who dispread the
earth and smoothed it, and who created all creatures and counted them,
that, an they be not his children, I will assuredly slay him and strike
his neck with mine own hand!" Then she cried out at the old woman, who
fell down for fear; and set upon her the Chamberlain and twenty
Mamelukes, saying, "Go with this crone and fetch me in haste the youth
who is in her house." So they dragged Shawahi along, yellow with fright
and with side-muscles quivering, till they came to her house, where she
went in to Hasan, who rose to her and kissed her hands and saluted her.
 She returned not his salam, but said to him, "Come; speak the Queen. 
Did I not say to thee: 'Return presently to thine own country and I
will give thee that to which no mortal may avail?' And did I forbid
thee from all this?  But thou wouldst not obey me nor listen to my
words; nay, thou rejectedst my counsel and chosest to bring destruction
on me and on thyself. Up, then, and take that which thou hast chosen;
for death is near hand.  Arise: speak with yonder vile harlot[FN#151]
and tyrant that she is!" So Hasan arose, broken-spirited,
heavy-hearted, and full of fear, and crying, "O Preserver, preserve
Thou me! O my God, be gracious to me in that which Thou hast decreed to
me of Thine affliction and protect me, O Thou the most Merciful of the
Mercifuls!" Then, despairing of his life, he followed the twenty
Mamelukes, the Chamberlain and the crone to the Queen's presence, where
he found his two sons Nasir and Mansur sitting in her lap, whilst she
played and made merry with them.  As soon as his eyes fell on them, he
knew them and crying a great cry fell down a-fainting for excess of joy
at the sight of his children.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan's eyes
fell upon his two sons, he knew them both and crying a great cry fell
down a-fainting.  They also knew him[FN#152] and natural affection
moved them so that they freed themselves from the Queen's lap and fell
upon Hasan, and Allah (to whom belong Might and Majesty,) made them
speak and say to him, "O our father!" Whereupon the old woman and all
who were present wept for pity and tenderness over them and said,
"Praised be Allah, who hath reunited you with your Sire!"  Presently,
Hasan came to himself and embracing his children, wept till again he
swooned away, and when he revived, he recited these verses,

"By rights of you, this heart of mine could ne'er aby * Severance
     from you albeit Union death imply!
Your phantom saith to me, 'A-morrow we shall meet!' * Shall I
     despite the foe the morrow-day espy?
By rights of you I swear, my lords, that since the day * Of
     severance ne'er the sweets of lips enjoyčd I!
An Allah bade me perish for the love of you, * Mid greatest
     martyrs for your love I lief will die.
Oft a gazelle doth make my heart her browsing stead * The while
     her form of flesh like sleep eludes mine eye:
If in the lists of Law my bloodshed she deny, * Prove it two
     witnesses those cheeks of ruddy dye."

When Nur al-Huda was assured that the little ones were indeed Hasan's
children and that her sister, the Princess Manar al-Sana, was his wife,
of whom he was come in quest, she was wroth against her with wrath
beyond measure.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixteenth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Nur
al-Huda was certified that the little ones were Hasan's children and
that her sister Manar al-Sana was his wife of whom he had come in
quest, she raged with exceeding rage, too great to be assuaged and
screamed in Hasan's face and reviled him and kicked him in the breast,
so that he fell on his back in a swoon. Then she cried out at him,
saying, "Arise! fly for thy life.  But that I swore that no evil should
betide thee from me, should thy tale prove true, I would slay thee with
mine own hand forthright!" And she cried out at the old woman, who fell
on her face for fear, and said to her, "By Allah, but that I am loath
to break the oath that I swore, I would put both thee and him to death
after the foulest fashion!"; presently adding, "Arise, go out from
before me in safety and return to thine own country, for I swear by my
fortune, if ever mine eye espy thee or if any bring thee in to me after
this, I will smite off thy head and that of whoso bringeth thee!" Then
she cried out to her officers, saying, "Put him out from before me!" So
they thrust him out, and when he came to himself, he recited these

"You're far, yet to my heart you're nearest near; * Absent yet
     present in my sprite you appear:
By Allah, ne'er to other I've inclined * But tyranny of Time in
     patience bear!
Nights pass while still I love you and they end, * And burns my
     breast with flames of fell Sa'ir;[FN#153]
I was a youth who parting for an hour * Bore not, then what of
     months that make a year?
Jealous am I of breeze-breath fanning thee; * Yea jealous-mad of
     fair soft-sided fere!"

Then he once more fell down in a swoon, and when he came to himself, he
found himself without the palace whither they had dragged him on his
face; so he rose, stumbling over his skirts and hardly crediting his
escape from Nur al-Huda.  Now this was grievous to Shawahi; but she
dared not remonstrate with the Queen by reason of the violence of her
wrath.  And forthright Hasan went forth, distracted and knowing not
whence to come or whither to go; the world, for all its wideness, was
straitened upon him and he found none to speak a kind word with him and
comfort him, nor any to whom he might resort for counsel or to apply
for refuge; wherefore he made sure of death for that he could not
journey to his own country and knew none to travel with him, neither
wist he the way thither nor might he pass through the Wady of the Jann
and the Land of Beasts and the Islands of Birds. So giving himself up
for lost he bewept himself, till he fainted, and when he revived, he
bethought him of his children and his wife and of that might befal her
with her sister, repenting him of having come to those countries and of
having hearkened to none, and recited these couplets,

"Suffer mine eye-babes weep lost of love and tears express: *
     Rare is my solace and increases my distress:
The cup of Severance-chances to the dregs I've drained; * Who is
     the man to bear love-loss with manliness?
Ye spread the Carpet of Disgrace[FN#154] betwixt us twain; * Ah,
     when shalt be uprolled, O Carpet of Disgrace?
I watched the while you slept; and if you deemed that I * Forgot
     your love I but forget forgetfulness:
Woe's me! indeed my heart is pining for the love * Of you, the
     only leaches who can cure my case:
See ye not what befel me from your fell disdain? * Debased am I
     before the low and high no less.
I hid my love of you but longing laid it bare, * And burns my
     heart wi' fire of passion's sorest stress:
Ah! deign have pity on my piteous case, for I * Have kept our
     troth in secresy and patent place!
Would Heaven I wot shall Time e'er deign us twain rejoin! * You
     are my heart's desire, my sprite's sole happiness:
My vitals bear the Severance-wound: would Heaven that you * With
     tidings from your camp would deign my soul to bless!"

Then he went on, till he came without the city, where he found the
river, and walked along its bank, knowing not whither he went.  Such
was Hasan's case; but as regards his wife Manar al-Sana, as she was
about to carry out her purpose and to set out, on the second day after
the departure of the old woman with her children, behold, there came in
to her one of the chamberlains of the King her sire, and kissed ground
between his hands,—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventeenth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Manar
al-Sana was about to set out upon the journey, behold, a chamberlain of
the King, her sire, came in to her and kissing the ground before her,
said, "O Princess, the Supreme King, thy father saluteth thee and
biddeth thee to him." So she rose and accompanied the chamberlain to
learn what was required by her father, who seated her by his side on
the couch, and said to her, "O my daughter, know that I have this night
had a dream which maketh me fear for thee and that long sorrow will
betide thee from this thy journey." Quoth she, "How so, O my father,
and what didst thou see in thy dream?" and quoth he, "I dreamt that I
entered a hidden hoard, wherein was great store of monies, of jewels,
of jacinths and of other riches; but 'twas as if naught pleased me of
all this treasure and jewelry save seven bezels, which were the finest
things there. I chose out one of the seven jewels, for it was the
smallest, finest and most lustrous of them and its water pleased me; so
I took it in my hand-palm and fared forth of the treasury.  When I came
without the door, I opened my hand, rejoicing, and turned over the
jewel, when, behold, there swooped down on me out of the welkin a
strange bird from a far land (for it was not of the birds of our
country) and, snatching it from my hand, returned with it whence it
came.[FN#155] Whereupon sorrow and concern and sore vexation overcame
me and my exceeding chagrin so troubled me that I awoke, mourning and
lamenting for the loss of the jewel.  At once on awaking I summoned the
interpreters and expounders of dreams and declared to them my
dream,[FN#156] and they said to me: 'Thou hast seven daughters, the
youngest of whom thou wilt lose, and she will be taken from thee
perforce, without thy will.'  Now thou, O my girl, art the youngest and
dearest of my daughters and the most affectionate of them to me, and
look'ye thou art about to journey to thy sister, and I know not what
may befal thee from her; so go thou not; but return to thy palace." But
when the Princess heard her father's words, her heart fluttered and she
feared for her children and bent earthwards her head awhile: then she
raised it and said to her sire, "O King, Queen Nur al-Huda hath made
ready for me an entertainment and awaiteth my coming to her, hour by
hour.  These four years she hath not seen me and if I delay to visit
her, she will be wroth with me.  The utmost of my stay with her shall
be a month and then I will return to thee. Besides, who is the mortal
who can travel our land and make his way to the Islands of Wak? Who can
gain access to the White Country and the Black Mountain and come to the
Land of Camphor and the Castle of Crystal, and how shall he traverse
the Island of Birds and the Wady of Wild Beasts and the Valley of the
Jann and enter our Islands?  If any stranger came hither, he would be
drowned in the seas of destruction: so be of good cheer and eyes
without a tear anent my journey; for none may avail to tread our
earth." And she ceased not to persuade him, till he deigned give her
leave to depart.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eighteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Princess
ceased not to persuade him till he deigned give her leave to depart,
and bade a thousand horse escort her to the river and abide there, till
she entered her sister's city and palace and returned to them, when
they should take her and carry her back to him.  Moreover, he charged
her tarry with her sister but two days and return to him in haste; and
she answered, "Hearing and obedience." Then rising up she went forth
and he with her and farewelled her.  Now his words had sunken deep into
her heart and she feared for her children; but it availeth not to
fortify herself by any device against the onset of Destiny.  So she set
out and fared on diligently three days, till she came to the river and
pitched her tents on its bank.  Then she crossed the stream, with some
of her counsellors, pages and suite and, going up to the city and the
palace, went in to Queen Nur al-Huda, with whom she found her children
who ran to her weeping and crying out, "O our father!"  At this, the
tears railed from her eyes and she wept; then she strained them to her
bosom, saying, "What! Have you seen your sire at this time?  Would the
hour had never been, in which I left him!  If I knew him to be in the
house of the world, I would carry you to him." Then she bemoaned
herself and her husband and her children weeping and reciting these

"My friends, despight this distance and this cruelty, * I pine
     for you, incline to you where'er you be.
My glance for ever turns toward your hearth and home * And mourns
     my heart the bygone days you woned with me,
How many a night foregathered we withouten fear * One loving,
     other faithful ever fain and free!"

When her sister saw her fold her children to her bosom, saying, "'Tis I
who have done thus with myself and my children and have ruined my own
house!" she saluted her not, but said to her, "O whore, whence haddest
thou these children? Say, hast thou married unbeknown to thy sire or
hast thou committed fornication?[FN#157]  An thou have played the
piece, it behoveth thou be exemplarily punished; and if thou have
married sans our knowledge, why didst thou abandon thy husband and
separate thy sons from thy sire and bring them hither?"—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Nineteenth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that quoth Nur
al-Huda, the Queen, to her sister Manar al-Sana, the Princess, "An thou
have married sans our knowledge, why didst thou abandon thy husband and
separate thy sons from their sire and bring them to our land?  Thou
hast hidden thy children from us.  Thinkest thou we know not of this? 
Allah Almighty, He who is cognisant of the concealed, hath made known
to us thy case and revealed thy condition and bared thy nakedness."
Then she bade her guards seize her and pinion her elbows and shackle
her with shackles of iron.  So they did as she commanded and she beat
her with a grievous beating, so that her skin was torn, and hanged her
up by the hair; after which she cast her in prison and wrote the King
her father a writ acquainting him with her case and saying, "There hath
appeared in our land a man, a mortal, by name Hasan, and our sister
Manar al-Sana avoucheth that she is lawfully married to him and bare
him two sons, whom she hath hidden from us and thee; nor did she
discover aught of herself till there came to us this man and informed
us that he wedded her and she tarried with him a long while; after
which she took her children and departed, without his knowledge,
bidding as she went his mother tell her son, whenas longing began to
rack to come to her in the Islands of Wak.  So we laid hands on the man
and sent the old woman Shawahi to fetch her and her offspring,
enjoining her to bring us the children in advance of her.  And she did
so, whilst Manar al-Sana equipped herself and set out to visit me. When
the boys were brought to me and ere the mother came, I sent for Hasan
the mortal who claimeth her to wife, and he on entering and at first
sight knew them and they knew him; whereby was I certified that the
children were indeed his children and that she was his wife and I
learned that the man's story was true and he was not to blame, but that
the reproach and the infamy rested with my sister.  Now I feared the
rending of our honour-veil before the folk of our Isles; so when this
wanton, this traitress, came in to me, I was incensed against her and
cast her into prison and bastinado'd her grievously and hanged her up
by the hair.  Behold, I have acquainted thee with her case and it is
thine to command, and whatso thou orderest us that we will do. Thou
knowest that in this affair is dishonour and disgrace to our name and
to thine, and haply the islanders will hear of it, and we shall become
amongst them a byword; wherefore it befitteth thou return us an answer
with all speed." Then she delivered the letter to a courier and he
carried it to the King, who, when he read it, was wroth with exceeding
wrath with his daughter Manar al-Sana and wrote to Nur al-Huda, saying,
"I commit her case to thee and give thee command over her life; so, if
the matter be as thou sayest, kill her without consulting me." When the
Queen had received and read her father's letter, she sent for Manar
al-Sana and they set before her the prisoner drowned in her blood and
pinioned with her hair, shackled with heavy iron shackles and clad in
hair-cloth; and they made her stand in the presence abject and abashed.
 When she saw herself in this condition of passing humiliation and
exceeding abjection, she called to mind her former high estate and wept
with sore weeping and recited these two couplets,

"O Lord my foes are fain to slay me in despight * Nor deem I
     anywise to find escape by flight:
I have recourse to Thee t' annul what they have done; * Thou art
     th' asylum, Lord, of fearful suppliant wight."

Then wept she grievously, till she fell down in a swoon, and presently
coming to herself, repeated these two couplets,[FN#158]

"Troubles familiar with my heart are grown and I with them, *
     Erst shunning; for the generous are sociable still.
Not one mere kind alone of woe doth lieger with me lie; * Praised
     be God! There are with me thousands of kinds of ill."

And also these,

"Oft times Mischance shall straiten noble breast * With grief,
     whence issue is for Him to shape:
But when the meshes straitest, tightest, seem * They loose,
     though deemed I ne'er to find escape."

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

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twentieth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Queen Nur
al-Huda ordered into the presence her sister Princess Manar al-Sana,
they set her between her hands and she, pinioned as she was recited the
verses aforesaid. Then the Queen[FN#159] sent for a ladder of wood and
made the eunuchs lay her on her back, with her arms spread out and bind
her with cords thereto; after which she bared her head and wound her
hair about the ladder-rungs and indeed all pity for her was rooted out
from her heart.  When Manar al-Sana saw herself in this state of
abjection and humiliation, she cried out and wept; but none succoured
her. Then said she to the Queen, "O my sister, how is thy heart
hardened against me? Hast thou no mercy on me nor pity on these little
children?" But her words only hardened her sister's heart and she
insulted her, saying, "O Wanton! O harlot!  Allah have no ruth on whoso
sueth for thee!  How should I have compassion on thee, O traitress?"
Replied Manar al-Sana who lay stretched on the ladder, "I appeal from
thee to the Lord of the Heavens, concerning that wherewith thou
revilest me and whereof I am innocent! By Allah, I have done no
whoredom, but am lawfully married to him, and my Lord knoweth an I
speak sooth or not! Indeed, my heart is wroth with thee, by reason of
thine excessive hardheartedness against me!  How canst thou cast at me
the charge of harlotry, without knowledge?  But my Lord will deliver me
from thee and if that whoredom whereof thou accusest me be true, may He
presently punish me for it!" Quoth Nur al-Huda after a few moments of
reflection "How durst thou bespeak me thus?" and rose and beat her till
she fainted away;[FN#160] whereupon they sprinkled water on her face
till she revived; and in truth her charms were wasted for excess of
beating and the straitness of her bonds and the sore insults she had
suffered.  Then she recited these two couplets,

"If aught I've sinned in sinful way, * Or done ill deed and gone
The past repent I and I come * To you and for your pardon pray!"

When Nur al-Huda heard these lines, her wrath redoubled and she said to
her, "Wilt speak before me in verse, O whore, and seek to excuse
thyself for the mortal sins thou hast sinned?  'Twas my desire that
thou shouldst return to thy husband, that I might witness thy
wickedness and matchless brazenfacedness; for thou gloriest in thy
lewdness and wantonness and mortal heinousness." Then she called for a
palm-stick and, whenas they brought the Jaríd, she arose and baring
arms to elbows, beat her sister from head to foot; after which she
called for a whip of plaited thongs, wherewith if one smote an
elephant, he would start off at full speed, and came down therewith on
her back and her stomach and every part of her body, till she fainted. 
When the old woman Shawahi saw this, she fled forth from the Queen's
presence, weeping and cursing her; but Nur al-Huda cried out to her
eunuchs, saying, "Fetch her to me!" So they ran after her and seizing
her, brought her back to the Queen, who bade throw her on the ground
and making them lay hold of her, rose and took the whip, with which she
beat her, till she swooned away, when she said to her waiting-women,
"Drag this ill-omened beldam forth on her face and put her out." And
they did as she bade them.  So far concerning them; but as regards
Hasan, he walked on beside the river, in the direction of the desert,
distracted, troubled, and despairing of life; and indeed he was dazed
and knew not night from day for stress of affliction.  He ceased not
faring  on thus, till he came to a tree whereto he saw a scroll
hanging:  so he took it and found written thereon these couplets,

"When in thy mother's womb thou wast, * I cast thy case the
     bestest best;
And turned her heart to thee, so she * Fosterčd thee on fondest
We will suffice thee in whate'er * Shall cause thee trouble or
We'll aid thee in thine enterprise * So rise and bow to our

When he had ended reading this scroll, he made sure of deliverance from
trouble and of winning reunion with those he loved.  Then he walked
forward a few steps and found himself alone in a wild and perilous wold
wherein there was none to company with him; upon which his heart sank
within him for horror and loneliness and his side-muscles trembled, for
that fearsome place, and he recited these couplets,

"O Zephyr of Morn, an thou pass where the dear ones dwell, * Bear
     greeting of lover who ever in love-longing wones!
And tell them I'm pledged to yearning and pawned to pine * And
     the might of my passion all passion of lovers unthrones.
Their sympathies haply shall breathe in a Breeze like thee * And
     quicken forthright this framework of rotting bones."[FN#161]

—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twenty-first Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan
read the scroll he was certified of deliverance from his trouble and
made sure of winning reunion with those he loved. Then he walked
forward a couple of steps and stopped finding himself alone in a wild
and perilous wold wherein was none to company with him, so he wept sore
and recited the verses before mentioned. Then he walked on a few steps
farther beside the river, till he came upon two little boys of the sons
of the sorcerers, before whom lay a rod of copper graven with
talismans, and beside it a skull-cap[FN#162] of leather, made of three
gores and wroughten in steel with names and characts.  The cap and rod
were upon the ground and the boys were disputing and beating each
other, till the blood ran down between them; whilst each cried, "None
shall take the wand but I."  So Hasan interposed and parted them,
saying, "What is the cause of your contention?" and they replied, "O
uncle, be thou judge of our case, for Allah the Most High hath surely
sent thee to do justice between us." Quoth Hasan, "Tell me your case,
and I will judge between you;"  and quoth one of them, "We twain are
brothers-german and our sire was a mighty magician, who dwelt in a cave
on yonder mountain. He died and left us this cap and rod; and my
brother saith, 'None shall have the rod but I,' whilst I say the like;
so be thou judge between us and deliver us each from other." Hasan
asked, "What is the difference between the rod and the cap and what is
their value?  The rod appears to be worth six coppers[FN#163] and the
cap three;" whereto they answered, "Thou knowest not their properties."
"And what are their properties?" "Each of them hath a wonderful secret
virtue, wherefore the rod is worth the revenue of all the Islands of
Wak and their provinces and dependencies, and the cap the like!" "By
Allah, O my sons, discover to me their secret virtues." So they said,
"O uncle, they are extraordinary; for our father wrought an hundred and
thirty and five years at their contrivance, till he brought them to
perfection and ingrafted them with secret attributes which might serve
him extraordinary services and engraved them after the likeness of the
revolving sphere, and by their aid he dissolved all spells; and when he
had made an end of their fashion, Death, which all needs must suffer,
overtook him.  Now the hidden virtue of the cap is, that whoso setteth
it on his head is concealed from all folks' eyes, nor can any see him,
whilst it remaineth on his head; and that of the rod is that whoso
owneth it hath authority over seven tribes of the Jinn, who all serve
the order and ordinance of the rod; and whenever he who possesseth it
smiteth therewith on the ground, their Kings come to do him homage, and
all the Jinn are at his service." Now when Hasan heard these words, he
bowed his head groundwards awhile, then said in himself, "By Allah, I
shall conquer every foe by means of this rod and cap, Inshallah! and I
am worthier of them both than these two boys.  So I will go about
forthright to get them from the twain by craft, that I may use them to
free myself and my wife and children from yonder tyrannical Queen, and
then we will depart from this dismal stead, whence there is no
deliverance for mortal man nor flight.  Doubtless, Allah caused me not
to fall in with these two lads, but that I might get the rod and cap
from them." Then he raised his head and said to the two boys, "If ye
would have me decide the case, I will make trial of you and see what
each of you deserveth. He who overcometh his brother shall have the rod
and he who faileth shall have the cap." They replied, "O uncle, we
depute thee to make trial of us and do thou decide between us as thou
deems fit."  Hasan asked, "Will ye hearken to me and have regard to my
words?"; and they answered, "Yes." Then said he, "I will take a stone
and throw it and he who outrunneth his brother thereto and picketh it
up shall take the rod, and the other who is outraced shall take the
cap." And they said, "We accept and consent to this thy proposal." Then
Hasan took a stone and threw it with his might, so that it disappeared
from sight. The two boys ran under and after it and when they were at a
distance, he donned the cap and hending the rod in hand, removed from
his place that he might prove the truth of that which the boys had
said, with regard to their scant properties.  The younger outran the
elder and coming first to the stone, took it and returned with it to
the place where they had left Hasan, but found no signs of him.  So he
called to his brother, saying, "Where is the man who was to be umpire
between us?" Quoth the other, "I espy him not neither wot I whether he
hath flown up to heaven above or sunk into earth beneath." Then they
sought for him, but saw him not, though all the while he was standing
in his stead hard by them.  So they abused each other, saying, "Rod and
Cap are both gone; they are neither mine nor thine: and indeed our
father warned us of this very thing; but we forgot whatso he said."
Then they retraced their steps and Hasan also entered the city, wearing
the cap and bearing the rod; and none saw him. Now when he was thus
certified of the truth of their speech, he rejoiced with exceeding joy
and making the palace, went up into the lodging of Shawahi, who saw him
not, because of the cap.  Then he walked up to a shelf[FN#164] over her
head upon which were vessels of glass and chinaware, and shook it with
his hand, so that what was thereon fell to the ground.  The old woman
cried out and beat her face; then she rose and restored the fallen
things to their places,[FN#165] saying in herself, "By Allah, methinks
Queen Nur al-Huda hath sent a Satan to torment me, and he hath tricked
me this trick!  I beg Allah Almighty deliver me from her and preserve
me from her wrath, for, O Lord, if she deal thus abominably with her
half-sister, beating and hanging her, dear as she is to her sire, how
will she do with a stranger like myself, against whom she is
incensed?"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twenty-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the ancient Lady
of Calamities cried, "When Queen Nur al-Huda doeth such misdeed to her
sister, what will she do to a stranger like myself, against whom she is
incensed?" Then said she, "I conjure thee, O devil, by the Most
Compassionate, the Bountiful-great, the High of Estate, of Dominion
Elate who man and Jinn did create, and by the writing upon the seal of
Solomon David-son (on both be the Peace!) speak to me and answer me;"
Quoth Hasan, "I am no devil; I am Hasan, the afflicted, the
distraught." Then he raised the cap from his head and appeared to the
old woman, who knew him and taking him apart, said to him, "What is
come to thy reason, that thou returnest hither?  Go hide thee; for, if
this wicked woman have tormented thy wife with such torments, and she
her sister, what will she do, an she light on thee?" Then she told him
all that had befallen his spouse and that wherein she was of travail
and torment and tribulation, and straitly described all the pains she
endured adding, "And indeed the Queen repenteth her of having let thee
go and hath sent one after thee, promising him an hundred-weight of
gold and my rank in her service; and she hath sworn that, if he bring
thee back, she will do thee and thy wife and children dead." And she
shed tears and discovered to Hasan what the Queen had done with
herself, whereat he wept and said, "O my lady, how shall I do to escape
from this land and deliver myself and my wife and children from this
tyrannical Queen and how devise to return with them in safety to my own
country?" Replied the old woman, "Woe to thee!  Save thyself." Quoth
he, "There is no help but I deliver her and my children from the Queen
perforce and in her despite;" and quoth Shawahi, "How canst thou
forcibly rescue them from her?  Go and hide thyself, O my son, till
Allah Almighty empower thee." Then Hasan showed her the rod and the
cap, whereat she rejoiced with joy exceeding and cried, "Glory be to
Him who quickeneth the bones, though they be rotten!  By Allah, O my
son, thou and thy wife were but of lost folk; now, however, thou art
saved, thou and thy wife and children!  For I know the rod and I know
its maker, who was my Shaykh in the science of Gramarye.  He was a
mighty magician and spent an hundred and thirty and five years working
at this rod and cap, till he brought them to perfection, when Death the
Inevitable overtook him. And I have heard him say to his two boys, 'O
my sons, these two things are not of your lot, for there will come a
stranger from a far country, who will take them from you by force, and
ye shall not know how he taketh them.' Said they, 'O our father, tell
us how he will avail to take them.'  But he answered, 'I wot not.' And
O my son," added she, "how availedst thou to take them?" So he told her
how he had taken them from the two boys, whereat she rejoiced and said,
"O my son, since thou hast gotten the whereby to free thy wife and
children, give ear to what I shall say to thee.  For me there is no
woning with this wicked woman, after the foul fashion in which she
durst use me; so I am minded to depart from her to the caves of the
Magicians and there abide with them until I die.  But do thou, O my
son, don the cap and hend the rod in hand and enter the place where thy
wife and children are.  Unbind her bonds and smite the earth with the
rod saying, 'Be ye present, O servants of these names!' whereupon the
servants of the rod will appear; and if there present himself one of
the Chiefs of the Tribes, command him whatso thou shalt wish and will."
So he farewelled her and went forth, donning the cap and hending the
rod, and entered the place where his wife was. He found her well-nigh
lifeless, bound to the ladder by her hair, tearful-eyed and
woeful-hearted, in the sorriest of plights, knowing no way to deliver
herself.  Her children were playing under the ladder, whilst she looked
at them and wept for them and herself, because of the barbarities and
sore treatings and bitter penalties which had befallen her; and he
heard her repeat these couplets[FN#166],

"There remaineth not aught save a fluttering breath and an eye
     whose owner is confounded.
And a desirous lover whose bowels are burned with fire
     notwithstanding which she is silent.
The exulting foe pitieth her at the sight of her.  Alas for her
     whom the exulting foe pitieth!"

When Hasan saw her in this state of torment and misery and ignominy and
infamy, he wept till he fainted; and when he recovered he saw his
children playing and their mother aswoon for excess of pain; so he took
the cap from his head and the children saw him and cried out, "O our
father!" Then he covered his head again and the Princess came to
herself, hearing their cry, but saw only her children weeping and
shrieking, "O our father!" When she heard them name their sire and
weep, her heart was broken and her vitals rent asunder and she said to
them, "What maketh you in mind of your father at this time?" And she
wept sore and cried out, from a bursten liver and an aching bosom,
"Where are ye and where is your father?" Then she recalled the days of
her union with Hasan and what had befallen her since her desertion of
him and wept with sore weeping till her cheeks were seared and furrowed
and her face was drowned in a briny flood.  Her tears ran down and
wetted the ground and she had not a hand loose to wipe them from her
cheeks, whilst the flies fed their fill on her skin, and she found no
helper but weeping and no solace but improvising verses. Then she
repeated these couplets,

"I call to mind the parting-day that rent our loves in twain,
     When, as I turned away, the tears in very streams did rain.
The cameleer urged on his beasts with them, what while I found
     Nor strength nor fortitude, nor did my heart with me remain.
Yea, back I turned, unknowing of the road nor might shake off The
     trance of grief and longing love that numbed my heart and
And worst of all betided me, on my return, was one Who came to
     me, in lowly guise, to glory in my pain.
Since the belovčd's gone, O soul, forswear the sweet of life Nor
     covet its continuance, for, wanting him, 'twere vain.
List, O my friend, unto the tale of love, and God forbid That I
     should speak and that thy heart to hearken should not deign!
As 'twere El Asmaď himself, of passion I discourse Fancies rare
     and marvellous, linked in an endless chain."[FN#167]

—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twenty-third Night,

She continued, When Hasan went in to his wife he saw his children and
heard her repeating the verses afore mentioned.[FN#168] Then she turned
right and left, seeking the cause of her children's crying out, "O our
father!" but saw no one and marvelled that her sons should name their
sire at that time and call upon him.  But when Hasan heard her verses,
he wept till he swooned away and the tears railed down his cheeks like
rain.  Then he drew near the children and raised the cap from his head
unseen of his wife, whereupon they saw him and they knew him and cried
out, saying, "O our father!" Their mother fell a-weeping again, when
she heard them name their sire's name and said, "There is no avoiding
the doom which Almighty Allah hath decreed!" adding, "O Strange! What
garreth them think of their father at this time and call upon him,
albeit it is not of their wont?" Then she wept and recited these

"The land of lamping moon is bare and drear; * O eyne of me pour
     forth the brimming tear!
They marched: how shall I now be patient? * That I nor heart nor
     patience own I swear!
O ye, who marched yet bide in heart of me, * Will you, O lords of
     me, return to that we were?
What harm if they return and I enjoy * Meeting, and they had ruth
     on tears of care?
Upon the parting-day they dimmed these eyne, * For sad surprise,
     and lit the flames that flare.
Sore longed I for their stay, but Fortune stayed * Longings and
     turned my hope to mere despair.
Return to us (O love!) by Allah, deign! * Enow of tears have
     flowed for absence-bane."

Then Hasan could no longer contain himself, but took the cap from his
head; whereupon his wife saw him and recognising him screamed a scream
which startled all in the palace, and said to him, "How camest thou
hither?  From the sky hast thou dropped or through the earth hast thou
come up?" And her eyes brimmed with tears and Hasan also wept.  Quoth
she, "O man, this be no time for tears or blame.  Fate hath had its
course and the sight was blinded and the Pen hath run with what was
ordained of Allah when Time was begun: so, Allah upon thee,
whencesoever thou comest, go hide, lest any espy thee and tell my
sister and she do thee and me die!" Answered he, "O my lady and lady of
all Queens, I have adventured myself and come hither, and either I will
die or I will deliver thee from this strait and travel with thee and my
children to my country, despite the nose of this thy wickedest sister."
 But as she heard his words she smiled and for awhile fell to shaking
her head and said, "Far, O my life, far is it from the power of any
except Allah Almighty to deliver me from this my strait! Save thyself
by flight and wend thy ways and cast not thyself into destruction; for
she hath conquering hosts none may withstand.  Given that thou tookest
me and wentest forth, how canst thou make thy country and escape from
these islands and the perils of these awesome places?  Verily, thou
hast seen on thy way hither, the wonders, the marvels, the dangers and
the terrors of the road, such as none may escape, not even one of the
rebel Jinns. Depart, therefore, forthright and add not cark to my cark
and care to my care, neither do thou pretend to rescue me from this my
plight; for who shall carry me to thy country through all these vales
and thirsty wolds and fatal steads?" Rejoined Hasan, "By thy life, O
light of mine eyes, I will not depart this place nor fare but with
thee!" Quoth she, "O man!  How canst thou avail unto this thing and
what manner of man art thou?  Thou knowest not what thou sayest!  None
can escape from these realms, even had he command over Jinns, Ifrits,
magicians, chiefs of tribes and Marids.  Save thyself and leave me;
perchance Allah will bring about good after ill." Answered Hasan, "O
lady of fair ones, I came not save to deliver thee with this rod and
with this cap." And he told her what had befallen him with the two
boys; but, whilst he was speaking, behold, up came the Queen and heard
their speech.  Now when he was ware of her, he donned the cap and was
hidden from sight, and she entered and said to the Princess, "O wanton,
who is he with whom thou wast talking?" Answered Manar al-Sanar, "Who
is with me that should talk with me, except these children?" Then the
Quee took the whip and beat her, whilst Hasan stood by and looked on,
nor did she leave beating her till she fainted; whereupon she bade
transport her to another place.  So they loosed her and carried her to
another chamber whilst Hasan followed unseen.  There they cast her
down, senseless, and stood gazing upon her, till she revived and
recited these couplets,[FN#169]

"I have sorrowed on account of our disunion with a sorrow that
     made the tears to overflow from my eyelids;
And I vowed that if Fortune reunite us, I would never again
     mention our separation;
And I would say to the envious, Die ye with regret; By Allah I
     have now attained my desire!
Joy hath overwhelmed me to such a degree that by its excess it
     hath made me weep.
O eye, how hath weeping become thy habit?  Thou weepest in joy as
     well, as in sorrows."

When she ceased her verse the slave-girls went out from her and Hasan
took off the cap; whereupon his wife said to him, "See, O man, all this
befel me not save by reason of my having rebelled against thee and
transgressed thy commandment and gone forth without thy leave.[FN#170]
So, Allah upon thee blame me not for my sins and know that women never
wot a man's worth till they have lost him.  Indeed, I have offended and
done evil; but I crave pardon of Allah Almighty for whatso I did, and
if He reunite us, I will never again gainsay thee in aught, no,
never!"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twenty-fourth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Hasan's wife
besought pardon of him saying, "Blame me not for my sin; and indeed I
crave mercy of Allah Almighty." Quoth Hasan (and indeed his heart ached
for her), "'Twas not thou that wast in fault; nay, the fault was mine
and mine only, for I fared forth and left thee with one who knew not
thy rank, neither thy worth nor thy degree.  But know, O beloved of my
heart and fruit of my vitals and light of mine eyes, that Allah
(blessed be He!) hath ordained to me power of releasing thee; so, say
me, wouldst thou have me carry thee to thy father's home, there to
accomplish what Allah decreeth unto thee, or wilt thou forthright
depart with me to mine own country, now that relief is come to thee?"
Quoth she, "Who can deliver me save the Lord of the Heavens? Go to thy
mother-land and put away from thee false hope; for thou knowest not the
perils of these parts which, an thou obey me not, soon shalt thou
sight." And she improvised these couplets,

"On me and with me bides thy volunty; * Why then such anger such
     despite to me?
Whate'er befel us Heaven forbid that love * Fade for long time or
     e'er forgotten be!
Ceased not the spy to haunt our sides, till seen * Our love
     estranged and then estranged was he:
In truth I trusted to fair thoughts of thine * Though spake the
     wicked spy maliciously.
We'll keep the secret 'twixt us twain and hold * Although the
     brand of blame unsheathed we see.
The livelong day in longing love I spend * Hoping acceptance-
     message from my friend."

Then wept she and her children, and the handmaidens heard them: so they
came in to them and found them weeping, but saw not Hasan with them;
wherefore they wept for ruth of them and damned Queen Nur al-Huda. 
Then Hasan took patience till night came on and her guards had gone to
their sleeping-places, when he arose and girded his waist; then went up
to her and, loosing her kissed her on the head and between the eyes and
pressed her to his bosom, saying, "How long have we wearied for our
mother-land and for reunion there!  Is this our meeting in sleep, or on
wake?" Then he took up the elder boy and she took up the younger and
they went forth the palace; and Allah veiled them with the veil of His
protection, so that they came safe to the outer gate which closed the
entrance to the Queen's Serraglio. But finding it locked from without,
Hasan said, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah,
the Glorious, the Great!  Verily we are Allah's and unto Him shall we
return!" With this they despaired of escape and Hasan beat hand upon
hand, saying, "O Dispeller of dolours!  Indeed, I had bethought me of
every thing and considered its conclusion but this; and now, when it is
daybreak, they will take us, and what device have we in this case?" And
he recited the following two couplets,[FN#171]

"Thou madest fair thy thought of Fate, whenas the days were fair,
     And fearedst not the unknown ills that they to thee might
The nights were fair and calm to thee; thou wast deceived by
     them, For in the peace of night is born full many a
     troublous thing."

Then Hasan wept and his wife wept for his weeping and for the abasement
she had suffered and the cruelties of Time and Fortune,

"Baulks me my Fate as tho' she were my foe; * Each day she
     showeth me new cark and care:
Fate, when I aim at good, brings clear reverse, * And lets foul
     morrow wait on day that's fair."

And also these,

"Irks me my Fate and clean unknows that I * Of my high worth her
     shifts and shafts despise.
She nights parading what ill-will she works: * I night parading
     Patience to her eyes."

Then his wife said to him, "By Allah, there is no relief for us but to
kill ourselves and be at rest from this great and weary travail; else
we shall suffer grievous torment on the morrow." At this moment,
behold, they heard a voice from without the door say, "By Allah, O my
lady Manar al-Sana, I will not open to thee and thy husband Hasan,
except ye obey me in whatso I shall say to you!" When they heard these
words they were silent for excess of fright and would have returned
whence they came; when lo! the voice spake again saying, "What aileth
you both to be silent and answer me not?"  Therewith they knew the
speaker for the old woman Shawahi, Lady of Calamities, and said to her,
"Whatsoever thou biddest us, that will we do; but first open the door
to us; this being no time for talk." Replied she, "By Allah, I will not
open to you until ye both swear to me that you will take me with you
and not leave me with yonder whore: so, whatever befalleth you shall
befal me and if ye escape, I shall escape, and if ye perish, I shall
perish: for yonder abominable woman, tribade[FN#172] that she is!
entreateth me with indignity and still tormenteth me on your account;
and thou, O my daughter, knowest my worth." Now recognising her they
trusted in her and sware to her an oath such as contented her,
whereupon she opened the door to them and they fared forth and found
her riding on a Greek jar of red earthenware with a rope of palm-fibres
about its neck,[FN#173] which rolled under her and ran faster than a
Najdi colt, and she came up to them, and said, "Follow me and fear
naught, for I know forty modes of magic by the least of which I could
make this city a dashing sea, swollen with clashing billows, and
ensorcel each damsel therein to a fish, and all before dawn.  But I was
not able to work aught of my mischief, for fear of the King her father
and of regard to her sisters, for that they are formidable, by reason
of their many guards and tribesmen and servants.  However, soon will I
show you wonders of my skill in witchcraft; and now let us on, relying
upon the blessing of Allah and His good aid." Now Hasan and his wife
rejoiced in this, making sure of escape, —And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twenty-fifth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan and
his wife, accompanied by the ancient dame Shawahi, fared forth from the
palace, they made sure of deliverance and they walked on till they came
without the city, when he fortified his heart and, smiting the earth
with the rod, cried, "Ho, ye servants of these names, appear to me and
acquaint me with your conditions!" Thereupon the earth clave asunder
and out came ten[FN#174] Ifrits, with their feet in the bowels of the
earth and their heads in the clouds.  They kissed the earth three times
before Hasan and said as with one voice, "Adsumus! Here are we at thy
service, O our lord and ruler over us! What dost thou bid us do? For we
hear and obey thy commandment.  An thou wilt, we will dry thee up seas
and remove mountains from their places." So Hasan rejoiced in their
words and at their speedy answer to his evocation; then taking courage
and bracing up his resolution, he said to them, "Who are ye and what be
your names and your races, and to what tribes and clans and companies
appertain ye?" They kissed the earth once more and answered as with one
voice, saying, "We are seven Kings, each ruling over seven tribes of
the Jinn of all conditions, and Satans and Marids, flyers and divers,
dwellers in mountains and wastes and wolds and haunters of the seas: so
bid us do whatso thou wilt; for we are thy servants and thy slaves, and
whoso possesseth this rod hath dominion over all our necks and we owe
him obedience."  Now when Hasan heard this, he rejoiced with joy
exceeding, as did his wife and the old woman, and presently he said to
the Kings of the Jinn, "I desire of you that ye show me your tribes and
hosts and guards." "O our lord," answered they, "if we show thee our
tribes, we fear for thee and these who are with thee, for their name is
legion and they are various in form and fashion, figure and favour. 
Some of us are heads sans bodies and others bodies sans heads, and
others again are in the likeness of wild beasts and ravening lions.
However, if this be thy will, there is no help but we first show thee
those of us who are like unto wild beasts.  But, O our lord, what
wouldst thou of us at this present?"  Quoth Hasan, "I would have you
carry me forthwith to the city of Baghdad, me and my wife and this
honest woman." But, hearing his words they hung down their heads and
were silent, whereupon Hasan asked them, "Why do ye not reply?" And
they answered as with one voice, "O our lord and ruler over us, we are
of the covenant of Solomon son of David (on the twain be Peace!) and he
sware us in that we would bear none of the sons of Adam on our backs;
since which time we have borne no mortal on back or shoulder: but we
will straightway harness thee horses of the Jinn, that shall carry thee
and thy company to thy country." Hasan enquired, "How far are we from
Baghdad?" and they, "Seven years' journey for a diligent horseman."
Hasan marvelled at this and said to them, "Then how came I hither in
less than a year?"; and they said, "Allah softened to thee the hearts
of His pious servants else hadst thou never come to this country nor
hadst thou set eyes on these regions; no, never!  For the Shaykh Abd
al-Kaddus, who mounted thee on the elephant and the magical horse,
traversed with thee, in ten days, three years' journey for a well-girt
rider, and the Ifrit Dahnash, to whom the Shaykh committed thee,
carried thee a three years' march in a day and a night; all which was
of the blessing of Allah Almighty, for that the Shaykh Abu al-Ruwaysh
is of the seed of Ásaf bin Barkhiyá[FN#175] and knoweth the Most Great
name of Allah.[FN#176]  Moreover, from Baghdad to the palace of the
damsels is a year's journey, and this maketh up the seven years." When
Hasan heard this, he marvelled with exceeding marvel and cried, "Glory
be to God, Facilitator of the hard, Fortifier of the weak heart,
Approximator of the far and Humbler of every froward tyrant, Who hath
eased us of every accident and carried me to these countries and
subjected to me these creatures and reunited me with my wife and
children!  I know not whether I am asleep or awake or if I be sober or
drunken!" Then he turned to the Jinn and asked, "When ye have mounted
me upon your steeds, in how many days will they bring us to Baghdad?";
and they answered, "They will carry you thither under the year, but not
till after ye have endured terrible perils and hardships and horrors
and ye have traversed thirsty Wadys and frightful wastes and horrible
steads without number; and we cannot promise thee safety, O our lord,
from the people of these islands,"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twenty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Jann said to
Hasan, "We cannot promise thee safety, O our lord, from this Islandry,
nor from the mischief of the Supreme King and his enchanters and
warlocks.  It may be they will overcome us and take you from us and we
fall into affliction with them, and all to whom the tidings shall come
after this will say to us: 'Ye are wrong-doers!  How could ye go
against the Supreme King and carry a mortal out of his dominions, and
eke the King's daughter with him?' adding, 'Wert thou alone with us the
thing were light; but He who conveyed thee hither is capable to carry
thee back to thy country and reunite thee with thine own people
forthright and in readiest plight.  So take heart and put thy trust in
Allah and fear not; for we are at thy service, to convey thee to thy
country." Hasan thanked them therefor and said, "Allah requite you with
good! but now make haste with the horses;" they replied, "We hear and
we obey," and struck the ground with their feet, whereupon it opened
and they disappeared within it and were absent awhile, after which they
suddenly reappeared with three horses, saddled and bridled, and on each
saddle-bow a pair of saddle-bags, with a leathern bottle of water in
one pocket and the other full of provaunt.  So Hasan mounted one steed
and took a child before him, whilst his wife mounted a second and took
the other child before her.  Then the old woman alighted from the jar
and bestrode the third horse and they rode on, without ceasing, all
night.  At break of day, they turned aside from the road and made for
the mountain, whilst their tongues ceased not to name Allah. Then they
fared on under the highland all that day, till Hasan caught sight of a
black object afar as it were a tall column of smoke a-twisting
skywards; so he recited somewhat of the Koran and Holy Writ, and sought
refuge with Allah from Satan the Stoned. The black thing grew plainer
as they drew near, and when hard by it, they saw that it was an Ifrit,
with a head like a huge dome and tusks like grapnels and jaws like a
lane and nostrils like ewers and ears like leathern targes and mouth
like a cave and teeth like pillars of stone and hands like winnowing
forks and legs like masts: his head was in the cloud and his feet in
the bowels of the earth had plowed.  Whenas Hasan gazed upon him he
bowed himself and kissed the ground before him, saying, "O Hasan, have
no fear of me; for I am the chief of the dwellers in this land, which
is the first of the Isles of Wak, and I am a Moslem and an adorer of
the One God.  I have heard of you and your coming and when I knew of
your case, I desired to depart from the land of the magicians to
another land, void of inhabitants and far from men and Jinn, that I
might dwell there alone and worship Allah till my fated end came upon
me.  So I wish to accompany you and be your guide, till ye fare forth
of the Wak Islands; and I will not appear save at night; and do ye
hearten your hearts on my account; for I am a Moslem, even as ye are
Moslems." When Hasan heard the Ifrit's words, he rejoiced with
exceeding joy and made sure of deliverance; and he said to him, "Allah
requite thee weal!  Go with us relying upon the blessing of Allah!" So
the Ifrit forewent them and they followed, talking and making merry,
for their hearts were pleased and their breasts were eased and Hasan
fell to telling his wife all that had befallen him and all the
hardships he had undergone, whilst she excused herself to him and told
him, in turn, all she had seen and suffered. They ceased not faring all
that night.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twenty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that they ceased not
faring all that night and the horses bore them like the blinding leven,
and when the day rose all put their hands to the saddle-bags and took
forth provaunt which they ate and water which they drank.  Then they
sped diligently on their way, preceded by the Ifrit, who turned aside
with them from the beaten track into another road, till then untrodden,
along the sea-shore, and they ceased not faring on, without stopping,
across Wadys and wolds a whole month, till on the thirty-first day
there arose before them a dust-cloud, that walled the world and
darkened the day; and when Hasan saw this, he was confused and turned
pale; and more so when a frightful crying and clamour struck their
ears.  Thereupon the old woman said to him, "O my son, this is the army
of the Wak Islands, that hath overtaken us; and presently they will lay
violent hands on us." Hasan asked, "What shall I do, O my mother?"; and
she answered, "Strike the earth with the rod." He did so whereupon the
Seven Kings presented themselves and saluted him with the salam,
kissing ground before him and saying, "Fear not neither grieve." Hasan
rejoiced at these words and answered them, saying, "Well said, O
Princes of the Jinn and the Ifrits!  This is your time!" Quoth they,
"Get ye up to the mountain-top, thou and thy wife and children and she
who is with thee and leave us to deal with them, for we know that you
all are in the right and they in the wrong and Allah will aid us
against them."  So Hasan and his wife and children and the old woman
dismounted and dismissing the horses, ascended the flank of the
mountain.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twenty-eighth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Hasan with
his wife, his children and the ancient dame ascended the mountain-flank
after they had dismissed the coursers.  Presently, up came Queen Nur
al-Huda, with the troops right and left, and the captains went round
about among the host and ranged them rank by rank in battle array. 
Then the hosts charged down upon each other and clashed together the
twain with a mighty strain, the brave pressed on amain and the coward
to fly was fain and the Jinn cast flames of fire from their mouths,
whilst the smoke of them rose up to the confines of the sky and the two
armies appeared and disappeared.  The champions fought and heads flew
from trunks and the blood ran in rills; nor did brand leave to play and
blood to flow and battle fire to flow, till the murk o' night came,
when the two hosts drew apart and, alighting from their steeds rested
upon the field by the fires they had kindled. Therewith the Seven Kings
went up to Hasan and kissed the earth before him.  He pressed forwards
to meet them and thanked them and prayed Allah to give them the victory
and asked them how they had fared with the Queen's troops.  Quoth they,
"They will not withstand us more than three days, for we had the better
of them to-day, taking some two thousand of them prisoners and slaying
of them much folk whose compt may not be told.  So be of good cheer and
broad of breast." Then they farewelled him and went down to look after
the safety of their troops; and they ceased not to keep up the fires
till the morning rose with its sheen and shone, when the fighting-men
mounted their horses of noble strain and smote one another with
thin-edged skean and with brawn of bill they thrust amain nor did they
cease that day battle to darraign. Moreover, they passed the night on
horseback clashing together like dashing seas; raged among them the
fires of war and they stinted not from battle and jar, till the armies
of Wak were defeated and their power broken and their courage quelled;
their feet slipped and whither they fled soever defeat was before them;
wherefore they turned tail and of flight began to avail: but the most
part of them were slain and their Queen and her chief officers and the
grandees of her realm were captive ta'en.  When the morning morrowed,
the Seven Kings presented themselves before Hasan and set for him a
throne of alabaster inlaid with pearls and jewels, and he sat down
thereon.  They also set thereby a throne of ivory, plated with
glittering gold, for the Princess Manar al-Sana and another for the
ancient dame Shawahi Zat al-Dawahi.  Then they brought before them the
prisoners and among the rest, Queen Nur al-Huda with elbows pinioned
and feet fettered, whom when Shawahi saw, she said to her, "Thy
recompense, O harlot, O tyrant, shall be that two bitches be starved
and two mares stinted of water, till they be athirst: then shalt thou
be bound to the mares' tails and these driven to the river, with the
bitches following thee that they may rend thy skin; and after, thy
flesh shall be cut off and given them to eat.  How couldst thou do with
thy sister such deed, O strumpet, seeing that she was lawfully married,
after the ordinance of Allah and of His Apostle? For there is no
monkery in Al-Islam and marriage is one of the institutions of the
Apostles (on whom be the Peace!)[FN#177] nor were women created but for
men." Then Hasan commanded to put all the captives to the sword and the
old woman cried out, saying, "Slay them all and spare none[FN#178]!"
But, when Princess Manar al-Sana saw her sister in this plight, a
bondswoman and in fetters, she wept over her and said, "O my sister,
who is this hath conquered us and made us captives in our own country?"
Quoth Nur al-Huda, "Verily, this is a mighty matter.  Indeed this man
Hasan hath gotten the mastery over us and Allah hath given him dominion
over us and over all our realm and he hath overcome us, us and the
Kings of the Jinn." And quoth her sister, "Indeed, Allah aided him not
against you nor did he overcome you nor capture you save by means of
this cap and rod." So Nur al-Huda was certified and assured that he had
conquered her by means thereof and humbled herself to her sister, till
she was moved to ruth for her and said to her husband, "What wilt thou
do with my sister? Behold, she is in thy hands and she hath done thee
no misdeed that thou shouldest punish her." Replied Hasan, "Her
torturing of thee was misdeed enow." But she answered, saying, "She
hath excuse for all she did with me. As for thee, thou hast set my
father's heart on fire for the loss of me, and what will be his case,
if he lose my sister also?" And he said to her, "'Tis thine to decide;
do whatso thou wilt." So she bade loose her sister and the rest of the
captives, and they did her bidding.  Then she went up to Queen Nur
al-Huda and embraced her, and they wept together a long while; after
which quoth the Queen, "O my sister, bear me not malice for that I did
with thee;" and quoth Manar al-Sana, "O my sister, this was
foreordained to me by Fate." Then they sat on the couch talking and
Manar al-Sana made peace between the old woman and her sister, after
the goodliest fashion, and their hearts were set at ease. Thereupon
Hasan dismissed the servants of the rod thanking them for the succour
which they had afforded him against his foes, and Manar al-Sana related
to her sister all that had befallen her with Hasan her husband and
every thing he had suffered for her sake, saying, "O my sister, since
he hath done these deeds and is possessed of this might and Allah
Almighty hath gifted him with such exceeding prowess, that he hath
entered our country and beaten thine army and taken thee prisoner and
defied our father, the Supreme King, who hath dominion over all the
Princes of the Jinn, it behoveth us to fail not of what is due to him."
Replied Nur al-Huda, "By Allah, O my sister, thou sayest sooth in
whatso thou tellest me of the marvels which this man hath seen and
suffered; and none may fail of respect to him. But was all this on
thine account, O my sister?"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Twenty-ninth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Princess
Manar al-Sana repeated to her sister these praises of Hasan, the other
replied, "By Allah, this man can claim all respect more by token of his
generosity. But was all this on thine account?" "Yes," answered Manar
al-Sana, and they passed the night in converse till the morning
morrowed and the sun rose and they were minded to depart.  So they
farewelled one another and Manar al-Sana gave God-speed to the ancient
dame after the reconciling her with Queen Nur al-Huda. Thereupon Hasan
smote the earth with the rod and its servants the Jinn appeared and
saluted him, saying, "Praised be Allah, who hath set thy soul at rest! 
Command us what thou wilt, and we will do it for thee in less than the
twinking of an eye." He thanked them for their saying and said to them 
"Allah requite you with good! Saddle me two steeds of the best."  So
they brought him forthwith two saddled coursers, one of which he
mounted, taking his elder son before him, and his wife rode the other,
taking the younger son in front of her.  Then the Queen and the old
woman also backed horse and departed, Hasan and his wife following the
right and Nur al-Huda and Shawahi the left hand road.  The spouses
fared on with their children, without stopping, for a whole month, till
they drew in sight of a city, which they found compassed about with
trees and streams and making the trees dismounted beneath them thinking
to rest there.  As they sat talking, behold, they saw many horsemen
coming towards them, whereupon Hasan rose and going to meet them, saw
that it was King Hassun, lord of the Land of Camphor and Castle of
Crystal, with his attendants.  So Hasan went up to the King and kissed
his hands and saluted him; and when Hassun saw him, he dismounted and
seating himself with Hasan upon carpets under the trees returned his
salam and gave him joy of his safety and rejoiced in him with exceeding
joy, saying to him, "O Hasan, tell me all that hath befallen thee,
first and last."  So he told him all of that, whereupon the King
marvelled and said to him, "O my son, none ever reached the Islands of
Wak and returned thence but thou, and indeed thy case is wondrous; but
Alhamdolillah—praised be God—for safety!"  Then he mounted and bade
Hasan ride with his wife and children into the city, where he lodged
them in the guest-house of his palace; and they abode with him three
days, eating and drinking in mirth and merriment, after which Hasan
sought Hassun's leave to depart to his own country and the King granted
it.  Accordingly they took horse and the King rode with them ten days,
after which he farewelled them and turned back, whilst Hasan and his
wife and children fared on a whole month, at the end of which time they
came to a great cavern, whose floor was of brass.  Quoth Hasan to his
wife, "Kennest thou yonder cave?"; and quoth she, "No."  Said he,
"Therein dwelleth a Shaykh, Abu al-Ruwaysh hight, to whom I am greatly
beholden, for that he was the means of my becoming acquainted with King
Hassun." Then he went on to tell her all that had passed between him
and Abu al-Ruwaysh, and as he was thus engaged, behold, the Shaykh
himself issued from the cavern-mouth. When Hasan saw him, he dismounted
from his steed and kissed his hands, and the old man saluted him and
gave him joy of his safety and rejoiced in him.  Then he carried him
into the antre and sat down with him, whilst Hasan related to him what
had befallen him in the Islands of Wak; whereat the Elder marvelled
with exceeding marvel and said, "O Hasan, how didst thou deliver thy
wife and children?" So he told them the tale of the cap and the rod,
hearing which he wondered and said, "O Hasan, O my son, but for this
rod and the cap, thou hadst never delivered thy wife and children." And
he replied, "Even so, O my lord." As they were talking, there came a
knocking at the door and Abu al-Ruwaysh went out and found Abd
al-Kaddus mounted on his elephant.  So he saluted him and brought him
into the cavern, where he embraced Hasan and congratulated him on his
safety, rejoicing greatly in his return. Then said Abu al-Ruwaysh to
Hasan, "Tell the Shaykh Abd al-Kaddus all that hath befallen thee, O
Hasan." He repeated to him every thing that had passed, first and last,
till he came to the tale of the rod and cap,—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirtieth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Hasan began
relating to Shaykh Abd al-Kaddus and Shaykh Abu al-Ruwaysh (who sat
chattting in the cave) all that had passed, first and last, till he
came to the tale of the rod and cap; whereupon quoth Abd al-Kaddus, "O
my son, thou hast delivered thy wife and thy children and hast no
further need of the two.  Now we were the means of thy winning to the
Islands of Wak, and I have done thee kindness for the sake of my
nieces, the daughters of my brother; wherefore I beg thee, of thy
bounty and favour, to give me the rod and the Shaykh Abu al-Ruwaysh the
cap." When Hasan heard this, he hung down his head, being ashamed to
reply, "I will not give them to you," and said in his mind, "Indeed
these two Shaykhs have done me great kindness and were the means of my
winning to the Islands of Wak, and but for them I had never made the
place, nor delivered my children, nor had I gotten me this rod and
cap." So he raised his head and answered, "Yes, I will give them to
you: but, O my lords, I fear lest the Supreme King, my wife's father,
come upon me with his commando and combat with me in my own country,
and I be unable to repel them, for want of the rod and the cap."
Replied Abd al-Kaddus, "Fear not, O my son; we will continually succour
thee and keep watch and ward for thee in this place; and whosoever
shall come against thee from thy wife's father or any other, him we
will fend off from thee; wherefore be thou of good cheer and keep thine
eyes cool of tear, and hearten thy heart and broaden thy breast and
feel naught whatsoever of fear, for no harm shall come to thee." When
Hasan heard this he was abashed and gave the cap to Abu al-Ruwaysh,
saying to Abd al-Kaddus, "Accompany me to my own country and I will
give thee the rod." At this the two elders rejoiced with exceeding joy
and made him ready riches and treasures which beggar all description.
He abode with them three days, at the end of which he set out again and
the Shaykh Abd al-Kaddus made ready to depart with him.  So he and his
wife mounted their beasts and Abd al-Kaddus whistled when, behold, a
mighty big elephant trotted up with fore hand and feet on amble from
the heart of the desert and he took it and mounted it. Then they
farewelled Abu al-Ruwaysh who disappeared within his cavern; and they
fared on across country traversing the land in its length and breadth
wherever Abd al-Kaddus guided them by a short cut and an easy way, till
they drew near the land of the Princesses; whereupon Hasan rejoiced at
finding himself once more near his mother, and praised Allah for his
safe return and reunion with his wife and children after so many
hardships and perils; and thanked Him for His favours and bounties,
reciting these couplets,

"Haply shall Allah deign us twain unite * And lockt in strict
     embrace we'll hail the light:
And wonders that befel me I'll recount, * And all I suffered from
     the Severance-blight:
And fain I'll cure mine eyes by viewing you * For ever yearned my
     heart to see your sight:
I hid a tale for you my heart within * Which when we meet o' morn
     I'll fain recite:
I'll blame you for the deeds by you were done * But while blame
     endeth love shall stay in site."

Hardly had he made an end of these verses, when he looked and behold,
there rose to view the Green Dome[FN#179] and the jetting Fount and the
Emerald Palace, and the Mountain of Clouds showed to them from afar;
whereupon quoth Abd al-Kaddus, "Rejoice, O Hasan, in good tidings:
to-night shalt thou be the guest of my nieces!" At this he joyed with
exceeding joy and as also did his wife, and they alighted at the domed
pavilion, where they took their rest[FN#180] and ate and drank; after
which they mounted horse again and rode on till they came upon the
palace. As they drew near, the Princesses who were daughters of the
King, brother to Shaykh Abd al-Kaddus, came forth to meet them and
saluted them and their uncle who said to them, "O daughters of my
brother, behold, I have accomplished the need of this your brother
Hasan and have helped him to regain his wife and children." So they
embraced him and gave him joy of his return in safety and health and of
his reunion with his wife and children, and it was a day of
festival[FN#181] with them.  Then came forward Hasan's sister, the
youngest Princess, and embraced him, weeping with sore weeping, whilst
he also wept for his long desolation: after which she complained to him
of that which she had suffered for the pangs of separation and
weariness of spirit in his absence and recited these two couplets,

"After thy faring never chanced I 'spy * A shape, but did thy form
     therein descry:
Nor closed mine eyes in sleep but thee I saw, * E'en as though
     dwelling 'twixt the lid and eye."

When she had made an end of her verses, she rejoiced with joy exceeding
and Hasan said to her, "O my sister, I thank none in this matter save
thyself over all thy sisters, and may Allah Almighty vouchsafe thee
aidance and countenance!" Then he related to her all that had past in
his journey, from first to last, and all that he had undergone, telling
her what had betided him with his wife's sister and how he had
delivered his wife and wees and he also described to her all that he
had seen of marvels and grievous perils, even to how Queen Nur al-Huda
would have slain him and his spouse and children and none saved them
from her but the Lord the Most High.  Moreover, he related to her the
adventure of the cap and the rod and how Abd al-Kaddus and Abu
al-Ruwaysh had asked for them and he had not agreed to give them to the
twain save for her sake; wherefore she thanked him and blessed him
wishing him long life; and he cried, "By Allah, I shall never forget
all the kindness thou hast done me from incept to conclusion."—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirty-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Hasan
foregathered with the Princesses, he related to his sister all that he
had endured and said to her, "Never will I forget what thou hast done
for me from incept to conclusion." Then she turned to his wife Manar
al-Sana and embraced her and pressed her children to her breast, saying
to her, "O daughter of the Supreme King, was there no pity in thy
bosom, that thou partedst him and his children and settedst his heart
on fire for them?  Say me, didst thou desire by this deed that he
should die?" The Princess laughed and answered, "Thus was it ordained
of Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) and whoso beguileth folk, him
shall Allah begule."[FN#182]  Then they set on somewhat of meat and
drink, and they all ate and drank and made merry.  They abode thus ten
days in feast and festival, mirth and merry-making, at the end of which
time Hasan prepared to continue his journey.  So his sister rose and
made him ready riches and rarities, such as defy description.  Then she
strained him to her bosom, because of leave-taking, and threw her arms
round his neck whilst he recited on her account these couplets,

"The solace of lovers is naught but far, * And parting is naught
     save grief singular:
And ill-will and absence are naught but woe, * And the victims of
     Love naught but martyrs are;
And how tedious is night to the loving wight * From his true love
     parted 'neath evening star!
His tears course over his cheeks and so * He cries, 'O tears be
     there more to flow?'"

With this Hasan gave the rod to Shaykh Abd al-Kaddus, who joyed therein
with exceeding joy and thanking him and securing it mounted and
returned to his own place.  Then Hasan took horse with his wife and
children and departed from the Palace of the Princesses, who went
forth[FN#183] with him, to farewell him. Then they turned back and
Hasan fared on, over wild and wold, two months and ten days, till he
came to the city of Baghdad, the House of Peace, and repairing to his
home by the private postern which gave upon the open country, knocked
at the door.  Now his mother, for long absence, had forsworn sleep and
given herself to mourning and weeping and wailing, till she fell sick
and ate no meat, neither took delight in slumber but shed tears night
and day.  She ceased not to call upon her son's name albeit she
despaired of his returning to her; and as he stood at the door, he
heard her weeping and reciting these couplets,

"By Allah, heal, O my lords, the unwhole * Of wasted frame and
     heart worn with dole:
An you grant her a meeting 'tis but your grace * Shall whelm in
     the boons of the friend her soul:
I despair not of Union the Lord can grant * And to weal of
     meeting our woes control!"

When she had ended her verses, she heard her son's voice at the door,
calling out, "O mother, mother ah! fortune hath been kind and hath
vouchsafed our reunion!"  Hearing his cry she knew his voice and went
to the door, between belief and misbelief; but, when she opened it she
saw him standing there and with him his wife and children; so she
shrieked aloud, for excess of joy, and fell to the earth in a
fainting-fit.  Hasan ceased not soothing her, till she recovered and
embraced him; then she wept with joy, and presently she called his
slaves and servants and bade them carry all his baggage into the
house.[FN#184]  So they brought in every one of the loads, and his wife
and children entered also, whereupon Hasan's mother went up to the
Princess and kissed her head and bussed her feet, saying, "O daughter
of the Supreme King, if I have failed of thy due, behold, I crave
pardon of Almighty Allah." Then she turned to Hasan and said to him, "O
my son, what was the cause of this long strangerhood?" He related to
her all his adventures from beginning to end; and when she heard tell
of all that had befallen him, she cried a great cry and fell down
a-fainting at the very mention of his mishaps.  He solaced her, till
she came to herself and said, "By Allah, O my son, thou hast done
unwisely in parting with the rod and the cap for, hadst thou kept them
with the care due to them, thou wert master of the whole earth, in its
breadth and length; but praised be Allah, for thy safety, O my son, and
that of thy wife and children!" They passed the night in all pleasance
and happiness, and on the morrow Hasan changed his clothes and donning
a suit of the richest apparel, went down into the bazar and bought
black slaves and slave-girls and the richest stuffs and ornaments and
furniture such as carpets and costly vessels and all manner other
precious things, whose like is not found with Kings.  Moreover, he
purchased houses and gardens and estates and so forth and abode with
his wife and his children and his mother, eating and drinking and
pleasuring: nor did they cease from all joy of life and its solace till
there came to them the Destroyer of delights and the Severer of
societies.  And Glory be to Him who hath dominion over the Seen and the
Unseen,[FN#185] who is the Living, the Eternal, Who dieth not at all! 
And men also recount the adventures of

Khalifah the Fisherman of Baghdad

There was once in tides of yore and in ages and times long gone before
in the city of Baghdad a fisherman, Khalífah hight, a pauper wight, who
had never once been married in all his days. [FN#186]  It chanced one
morning, that he took his net and went with it to the river, as was his
wont, with the view of fishing before the others came.  When he reached
the bank, he girt himself and tucked up his skirts; then stepping into
the water, he spread his net and cast it a first cast and a second but
it brought up naught.  He ceased not to throw it, till he had made ten
casts, and still naught came up therein; wherefore his breast was
straitened and his mind perplexed concerning his case and he said, "I
crave pardon of God the Great, there is no god but He, the Living, the
Eternal, and unto Him I repent.  There is no Majesty and there is no
Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!  Whatso He willeth is and
whatso He nilleth is not!  Upon Allah (to whom belong Honour and
Glory!) dependeth daily bread! Whenas He giveth to His servant, none
denieth him; and whenas He denieth a servant, none giveth to him."  And
of the excess of his distress, he recited these two couplets,

"An Fate afflict thee, with grief manifest, * Prepare thy
     patience and make broad thy breast;
For of His grace the Lord of all the worlds * Shall send to wait
     upon unrest sweet Rest."

Then he sat awhile pondering his case, and with his head bowed down
recited also these couplets,

"Patience, with sweet and with bitter Fate! * And weet that His
     will He shall consummate:
Night oft upon woe as on abscess acts * And brings it up to the
     bursting state:
And Chance and Change shall pass o'er the youth * And fleet from
     his thoughts and no more shall bait."

Then he said in his mind, "I will make this one more cast, trusting in
Allah, so haply He may not disappoint my hope;" and he rose and casting
into the river the net as far as his arm availed, gathered the cords in
his hands and waited a full hour, after which he pulled at it and,
finding it heavy,—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirty-second Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when
Khalifah the Fisherman had cast his net sundry times into the stream,
yet had it brought up naught, he pondered his case and improvised the
verses afore quoted.  Then he said in his mind, "I will make this one
more cast, trusting in Allah who haply will not disappoint my hope." 
So he rose and threw the net and waited a full hour, after which time
he pulled at it and, finding it heavy, handled it gently and drew it
in, little by little, till he got it ashore, when lo and behold! he saw
in it a one-eyed, lame-legged ape.  Seeing this quoth Khalifah, "There
is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah! verily, we are
Allah's and to Him we are returning!  What meaneth this heart-
breaking, miserable ill-luck and hapless fortune?  What is come to me
this blessed day?  But all this is of the destinies of Almighty Allah!"
 Then he took the ape and tied him with a cord to a tree which grew on
the river-bank, and grasping a whip he had with him, raised his arm in
the air, thinking to bring down the scourge upon the quarry, when Allah
made the ape speak with a fluent tongue, saying, "O Khalifah, hold thy
hand and beat me not, but leave me bounden to this tree and go down to
the river and cast thy net, confiding in Allah; for He will give thee
thy daily bread."  Hearing this Khalifah went down to the river and
casting his net, let the cords run out.  Then he pulled it in and found
it heavier than before; so he ceased not to tug at it, till he brought
it to land, when, behold, there was another ape in it, with front teeth
wide apart, [FN#187] Kohl-darkened eyes and hands stained with
Henna-dyes; and he was laughing and wore a tattered waistcloth about
his middle.  Quoth Khalifah, "Praised be Allah who hath changed the
fish of the river into apes!" [FN#188] then, going up to the first ape,
who was still tied to the tree, he said to him, "See, O unlucky, how
fulsome was the counsel thou gavest me!  None but thou made me light on
this second ape: and for that thou gavest me good-morrow with thy one
eye and thy lameness, [FN#189] I am become distressed and weary,
without dirham or dinar."  So saying, he hent in hand a stick [FN#190]
and flourishing it thrice in the air, was about to come down with it
upon the lame ape, when the creature cried out for mercy and said to
him, "I conjure thee, by Allah, spare me for the sake of this my fellow
and seek of him thy need; for he will guide thee to thy desire!"  So he
held his hand from him and throwing down the stick, went up to and
stood by the second ape, who said to him, "O Khalifah, this my speech
[FN#191] will profit thee naught, except thou hearken to what I say to
thee; but, an thou do my bidding and cross me not, I will be the cause
of thine enrichment."  Asked Khalifah, "And what hast thou to say to me
that I may obey there therein?"  The Ape answered, "Leave me bound on
the bank and hie thee down to the river; then cast thy net a third
time, and after I will tell thee what to do."  So he took his net and
going down to the river, cast it once more and waited awhile.  Then he
drew it in and finding it heavy, laboured at it and ceased not his
travail till he got it ashore, when he found in it yet another ape; but
this one was red, with a blue waistcloth about his middle; his hands
and feet were stained with Henna and his eyes blackened with Kohl. 
When Khalifah saw this, he exclaimed, "Glory to God the Great! 
Extolled be the perfection of the Lord of Dominion!  Verily, this is a
blessed day from first to last: its ascendant was fortunate in the
countenance of the first ape, and the scroll [FN#192] is known by its
superscription!  Verily, to-day is a day of apes: there is not a single
fish left in the river, and we are come out to-day but to catch
monkeys!"  Then he turned to the third ape and said, "And what thing
art thou also, O unlucky?"  Quoth the ape, "Dost thou not know me, O
Khalifah!"; and quoth he, "Not I!"  The ape cried, "I am the ape of Abu
al-Sa'ádát [FN#193] the Jew, the shroff."  Asked Khalifah, "And what
dost thou for him?"; and the ape answered, "I give him good-morrow at
the first of the day, and he gaineth five ducats; and again at the end
of the day, I give him good-even and he gaineth other five ducats." 
Whereupon Khalifah turned to the first ape and said to him, "See, O
unlucky, what fine apes other folks have! As for thee, thou givest me
good-morrow with thy one eye and thy lameness and thy ill-omened phiz
and I become poor and bankrupt and hungry!"  So saying, he took the
cattle-stick and flourishing it thrice in the air, was about to come
down with it on the first ape, when Abu al-Sa'adat's ape said to him,
"Let him be, O Khalifah, hold thy hand and come hither to me, that I
may tell thee what to do." So Khalifah threw down the stick and walking
up to him cried, "And what hast thou to say to me, O monarch of all
monkeys?"  Replied the ape, "Leave me and the other two apes here, and
take thy net and cast it into the river; and whatever cometh up, bring
it to me, and I will tell thee what shall gladden thee."—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirty-third Night

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the ape of Abu
al-Sa'adat said to Khalifah, "Take thy net and cast it into the river;
and whatever cometh up, bring it to me, and I will tell thee what shall
gladden thee."  He replied, "I hear and obey," and took the net and
gathered it on his shoulder, reciting these couplets,

"When straitened is my breast I will of my Creator pray, * Who
     may and can the heaviest weight lighten in easiest way;
For ere man's glance can turn or close his eye by God His grace *
     Waxeth the broken whole and yieldeth jail its prison-prey.
Therefore with Allah one and all of thy concerns commit * Whose
     grace and favour men of wit shall nevermore gainsay."

And also these twain,

"Thou art the cause that castest men in ban and bane; * Sorrow
     e'en so and sorrow's cause Thou canst assain:
Make me not covet aught that lies beyond my reach; * How many a
     greedy wight his wish hath failed to gain!"

Now when Khalifah had made an end of his verse, he went down to the
river and casting his net, waited awhile; after which he drew it up and
found therein a fine young fish, [FN#194] with a big head, a tail like
a ladle and eyes like two gold pieces.  When Khalifah saw this fish, he
rejoiced, for he had never in his life caught its like, so he took it,
marvelling, and carried it to the ape of Abu al-Sa'adat the Jew, as
'twere he had gotten possession of the universal world.  Quoth the ape,
"O Khalifah, what wilt thou do with this and with thine ape?"; and
quoth the Fisherman, "I will tell thee, O monarch of monkeys all I am
about to do. Know then that first, I will cast about to make away with
yonder accursed, my ape, and take thee in his stead and give thee every
day to eat of whatso thou wilt."  Rejoined the ape, "Since thou hast
made choice of me, I will tell thee how thou shalt do wherein, if it
please Allah Almighty, shall be the mending of thy fortune.  Lend thy
mind, then, to what I say to thee and 'tis this!:  Take another cord
and tie me also to a tree, where leave me and go to the midst of The
Dyke [FN#195] and cast thy net into the Tigris. [FN#196]  Then after
waiting awhile, draw it up and thou shalt find therein a fish, than
which thou never sawest a finer in thy whole life.  Bring it to me and
I will tell thee how thou shalt do after this."  So Khalifah rose
forthright and casting his net into the Tigris, drew up a great
cat-fish [FN#197] the bigness of a lamb; never had he set eyes on its
like, for it was larger than the first fish.  He carried it to the ape,
who said to him, "Gather thee some green grass and set half of it in a
basket; lay the fish therein and cover it with the other moiety.  Then,
leaving us here tied, shoulder the basket and betake thee to Baghdad. 
If any bespeak thee or question thee by the way, answer him not, but
fare on till thou comest to the market-street of the money-changers, at
the upper end whereof thou wilt find the shop of Master [FN#198] Abu
al- Sa'adat the Jew, Shaykh of the shroffs, and wilt see him sitting on
a mattress, with a cushion behind him and two coffers, one for gold and
one for silver, before him, while around him stand his Mamelukes and
negro-slaves and servant-lads.  Go up to him and set the basket before
him, saying,: 'O Abu al-Sa'adat, verily I went out to-day to fish and
cast my net in thy name and Allah Almighty sent me this fish.'  He will
ask, 'Hast thou shown it to any but me?;' and do thou answer, "No, by
Allah!'  then will he take it of thee and give thee a dinar.  Give it
him back and he will give thee two dinars; but do thou return them also
and so do with everything he may offer thee; and take naught from him,
though he give thee the fish's weight in gold. Then will he say to
thee, 'Tell me what thou wouldst have;' and do thou reply, "By Allah, I
will not sell the fish save for two words!'  He will ask, 'What are
they?' and do thou answer, 'Stand up and say, 'Bear witness, O ye who
are present in the market, that I give Khalifah the fisherman my ape in
exchange for his ape, and that I barter for his lot my lot and luck for
his luck.'  This is the price of the fish, and I have no need of gold.'
 If he do this, I will every day give thee good-morrow and good-even,
and every day thou shalt gain ten dinars of good gold; whilst this
one-eyed, lame-legged ape shall daily give the Jew good-morrow, and
Allah shall afflict him every day with an avanie [FN#199] which he must
needs pay, nor will he cease to be thus afflicted till he is reduced to
beggary and hath naught.  Hearken then to my words; so shalt thou
prosper and be guided aright."  Quoth Khalifah, "I accept thy counsel,
O monarch of all the monkeys!  But, as for this unlucky, may Allah
never bless him!  I know not what to do with him."  Quoth the ape, "Let
him go [FN#200] into the water, and let me go also."  "I hear and
obey," answered Khalifah and unbound the three apes, and they went down
into the river.  Then he took up the cat-fish [FN#201] which he washed
then laid it in the basket upon some green grass, and covered it with
other; and lastly shouldering his load, set out chanting the following
Mawwál, [FN#202]

"Thy case commit to a Heavenly Lord and thou shalt safety see; *
     Act kindly through thy worldly life and live repentance-
Mate not with folk suspected, lest eke thou shouldst suspected be
     * And from reviling keep thy tongue lest men revile at

—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirty-fourth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Khalifah the
fisherman, after ending his song, set out with the basket upon his
shoulder and ceased not faring till he entered the city of Baghdad. 
And as he threaded the streets the folk knew him and cried out to him,
saying, "What hast thou there, O Khalifah?" But he paid no heed to them
and passed on till he came to the market- street of the money-changers
and fared between the shops, as the ape had charged him, till he found
the Jew seated at the upper end, with his servants in attendance upon
him, as he were a King of the Kings of Khorason. He knew him at first
sight; so he went up to him and stood before him, whereupon Abu
al-Sa'adat raised his eyes and recognising him, said, "Welcome, O
Khalifah!  What wantest thou and what is thy need?  If any have missaid
thee or spited thee, tell me and I will go with thee to the Chief of
Police, who shall do thee justice on him."  Replied Khalifah, "Nay, as
thy head liveth, O chief of the Jews, none hath missaid me.  But I went
forth this morning to the river and, casting my net into the Tigris on
thy luck, brought up this fish." Therewith he opened the basket and
threw the fish before the Jew who admired it and said, "By the
Pentateuch and the Ten Commandments, [FN#203] I dreamt last night that
the Virgin came to me and said, 'Know, O Abu al-Sa'adat, that I have
sent thee a pretty present!'  and doubtless 'tis this fish."  Then he
turned to Khalifah and said to him, "By thy faith, hath any seen it but
I?"  Khalifah replied, "No, by Allah, and by Abu Bakr the Veridical,
[FN#204] none hath seen it save thou, O chief of the Jews!"  Whereupon
the Jew turned to one of his lads and said to him, "Come, carry this
fish to my house and bid Sa'ádah [FN#205] dress it and fry and broil
it, against I make an end of my business and hie me home."  And
Khalifah said, "Go, O my lad; let the master's wife fry some of it and
broil the rest."  Answered the boy, "I hear and I obey, O my lord" and,
taking the fish, went away with it to the house.  Then the Jew put out
his hand and gave Khalifah the fisherman a dinar, saying, "Take this
for thyself, O Khalifah, and spend it on thy family."  When Khalifah
saw the dinar on his palm, he took it, saying, "Laud to the Lord of
Dominion!" as if he had never seen aught of gold in his life; and went
somewhat away, but, before he had gone far, he was minded of the ape's
charge and turning back threw down the ducat, saying, "Take thy gold
and give folk back their fish!  Dost thou make a laughing stock of
folk?"  The Jew hearing this thought he was jesting and offered him two
dinars upon the other, but Khalifah said, "Give me the fish and no
nonsense.  How knewest thou I would sell it at this price?"  Whereupon
the Jew gave him two more dinars and said, "Take these five ducats for
thy fish and leave greed."  So Khalifah hent the five dinars in hand
and went away, rejoicing, and gazing and marvelling at the gold and
saying, "Glory be to God! There is not with the Caliph of Baghdad what
is with me this day!"  Then he ceased not faring on till he came to the
end of the market-street, when he remembered the words of the ape and
his charge, and returning to the Jew, threw him back the gold.  Quoth
he, "What aileth thee, O Khalifah?  Dost thou want silver in exchange
for gold?"  Khalifah replied,  "I want nor dirhams nor dinars.  I only
want thee to give me back folk's fish."  With this the Jew waxed wroth
and shouted out at him, saying, "O fisherman, thou bringest me a fish
not worth a sequin and I give thee five for it; yet art thou not
content! Art thou Jinn-mad?  Tell me for how much thou wilt sell it." 
Answered Khalifah, "I will not sell it for silver nor for gold, only
for two sayings [FN#206] thou shalt say me."  When the Jew heard speak
of the "Two Sayings," his eyes sank into his head, he breathed hard and
ground his teeth for rage and said to him, "O nail-paring of the
Moslems, wilt thou have me throw off my faith for the sake of thy fish,
and wilt thou debauch me from my religion and stultify my belief and my
conviction which I inherited of old from my forbears?"  Then he cried
out to the servants who were in waiting and said, "Out on you!  Bash me
this unlucky rogue's neck and bastinado him soundly!"  So they came
down upon him with blows and ceased not beating him till he fell
beneath the shop, and the Jew said to them, "Leave him and let him
rise." Whereupon Khalifah jumped up, as if naught ailed him, and the
Jew said to him, "Tell me what price thou asketh for this fish and I
will give it thee: for thou hast gotten but scant good of us this day."
 Answered the Fisherman, "Have no fear for me, O master, because of the
beating; for I can eat ten donkeys' rations of stick."  The Jew laughed
at his words and said, "Allah upon thee, tell me what thou wilt have
and by the right of my Faith, I will give it thee!" The Fisherman
replied, "Naught from thee will remunerate me for this fish save the
two words whereof I spake."  And the Jew said, "Meseemeth thou wouldst
have me become a Moslem?" [FN#207]  Khalifah rejoined, "By Allah, O
Jew, an thou islamise 'twill nor advantage the Moslems nor damage the
Jews; and in like manner, an thou hold to thy misbelief 'twill nor
damage the Moslems nor advantage the Jews.  But what I desire of thee
is that thou rise to thy feet and say, 'Bear witness against me, O
people of the market, that I barter my ape for the ape of Khalifah the
Fisherman and my lot in the world for his lot and my luck for his
luck.'"  Quoth the Jew, "If this be all thou desirest 'twill sit
lightly upon me."  —And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirty-fifth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Jew said
to Khalifah the Fisherman, "If this be all thou desirest, 'twill sit
lightly upon me."  So he rose without stay or delay and standing on his
feet, repeated the required words; after which he turned to the
Fisherman and asked him, "Hast thou aught else to ask of me?"  "No,"
answered he, and the Jew said, "Go in peace!"  Hearing this Khalifah
sprung to his feet forthright; took up his basket and net and returned
straight to the Tigris, where he threw his net and pulled it in.  He
found it heavy and brought it not ashore but with travail, when he
found it full of fish of all kinds.  Presently, up came a woman with a
dish, who gave him a dinar, and he gave her fish for it; and after her
an eunuch, who also bought a dinar's worth of fish, and so forth till
he had sold ten dinars' worth.  And he continued to sell ten dinars'
worth of fish daily for ten days, till he had gotten an hundred dinars.
 Now Khalifah the Fisherman had quarters in the Passage of the
Merchants, [FN#208] and, as he lay one night in his lodging much
bemused with Hashish, he said to himself, "O Khalifah, the folk all
know thee for a poor fisherman, and now thou hast gotten an hundred
golden dinars.  Needs must the Commander of the Faithful, Harun
al-Rashid, hear of this from some one, and haply he will be wanting
money and will send for thee and say to thee, 'I need a sum of money
and it hath reached me that thou hast an hundred dinars: so do thou
lend them to me those same.'  I shall answer, 'O Commander of the
Faithful, I am a poor man, and whoso told thee that I had an hundred
dinars lied against me; for I have naught of this.'  Thereupon he will
commit me to the Chief of Police, saying, "Strip him of his clothes and
torment him with the bastinado till he confess and give up the hundred
dinars in his possession.  Wherefore, meseemeth to provide against this
predicament, the best thing I can do, is to rise forthright and bash
myself with the whip, so to use myself to beating."  And his Hashish
[FN#209] said to him, "Rise, doff thy dress."  So he stood up and
putting off his clothes, took a whip he had by him and set handy a
leathern pillow; then he fell to lashing himself, laying every other
blow upon the pillow and roaring out the while, "Alas! Alas! By Allah,
'tis a false saying, O my lord, and they have lied against me; for I am
a poor fisherman and have naught of the goods of the world!"  The noise
of the whip falling on the pillow and on his person resounded in the
still of night and the folk heard it, and amongst others the merchants,
and they said, "Whatever can ail the poor fellow, that he crieth and we
hear the noise of blows falling on him? 'Twould seem robbers have
broken in upon him and are tormenting him."  Presently they all came
forth of their lodgings, at the noise of the blows and the crying, and
repaired to Khalifah's room, but they found the door locked and said
one to other, "Belike the robbers have come in upon him from the back
of the adjoining saloon.  It behoveth us to climb over by the roofs."
So they clomb over the roofs and coming down through the sky- light,
[FN#210] saw him naked and flogging himself and asked him, "What aileth
thee, O Khalifah?"  He answered, "Know, O folk, that I have gained some
dinars and fear lest my case be carried up to the Prince of True
Believers, Harun al-Rashid, and he send for me and demand of me those
same gold pieces; whereupon I should deny, and I fear that, if I deny,
he will torture me, so I am torturing myself, by way of accustoming me
to what may come." The merchants laughed at him and said, "Leave this
fooling, may Allah not bless thee and the dinars thou hast gotten! 
Verily thou hast disturbed us this night and hast troubled our hearts."
So Khalifah left flogging himself and slept till the morning, when he
rose and would have gone about his business, but bethought him of his
hundred dinars and said in his mind, "An I leave them at home, thieves
will steal them, and if I put them in a belt [FN#211] about my waist,
peradventure some one will see me and lay in wait for me till he come
upon me in some lonely place and slay me and take the money: but I have
a device that should serve me well, right well."  So he jumped up
forthright and made him a pocket in the collar of his gaberdine and
tying the hundred dinars up in a purse, laid them in the collar-pocket.
 Then he took his net and basket and staff and went down to the Tigris,
— And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirty-sixth Night

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Khalifah the
Fisherman, having set his hundred dinars in the collar-pocket took
basket, staff and net and went down to the Tigris, where he made a cast
but brought up naught.  So he removed from that place to another and
threw again, but once more the net came up empty; and he went on
removing from place to place till he had gone half a day's journey from
the city, ever casting the net which kept bringing up naught.  So he
said to himself, "By Allah, I will throw my net a-stream but his once
more, whether ill come of it or weal!" [FN#212]  Then he hurled the net
with all his force, of the excess of his wrath and the purse with the
hundred dinars flew out of his collar-pocket and, lighting in
mid-stream, was carried away by the strong current; whereupon he threw
down the net and plunged into the water after the purse.  He dived for
it nigh a hundred times, till his strength was exhausted and he came up
for sheer fatigue without chancing on it. When he despaired of finding
the purse, he returned to the shore, where he saw nothing but staff,
net and basket and sought for his clothes, but could light on no trace
of them: so he said in himself, "O vilest of those wherefor was made
the byword, 'The pilgrimage is not perfected save by copulation with
the camel!" [FN#213]  Then he wrapped the net about him and taking
staff in one hand and basket in other, went trotting about like a camel
in rut, running right and left and backwards and forwards, dishevelled
and dusty, as he were a rebel Marid let loose from Solomon's prison.
[FN#214]  So far for what concerns the Fisherman Khalifah; but as
regards the Caliph Harun al-Rashid, he had a friend, a jeweller called
Ibn al-Kirnás, [FN#215] and all the traders, brokers and middle-men
knew him for the Caliph's merchant; wherefore there was naught sold in
Baghdad, by way of rarities and things of price or Mamelukes or
handmaidens, but was first shown to him.  As he sat one day in his
shop, behold, there came up to him the Shaykh of the brokers, with a
slave-girl, whose like seers never saw, for she was of passing beauty
and loveliness, symmetry and perfect grace, and among her gifts was
that she knew all arts and sciences and could make verses and play upon
all manner musical instruments. So Ibn al-Kirnas bought her for five
thousand golden dinars and clothed her with other thousand; after which
he carried her to the Prince of True Believers, with whom she lay the
night and who made trial of her in every kind of knowledge and
accomplishment and found her versed in all sorts of arts and sciences,
having no equal in her time.  Her name was Kút al-Kulúb [FN#216] and
she was even as saith the poet,

"I fix my glance on her, whene'er she wends; * And non-acceptance
     of my glance breeds pain:
She favours graceful-necked gazelle at gaze; * And 'Graceful as
     gazelle' to say we're fain."

And where is this [FN#217] beside the saying of another?

"Give me brunettes; the Syrian spears, so limber and so straight,
     Tell of the slender dusky maids, so lithe and proud of gait.
Languid of eyelids, with a down like silk upon her cheek, Within
     her wasting lover's heart she queens it still in state."

On the morrow the Caliph sent for Ibn al-Kirnas the Jeweller, and bade
him receive ten thousand dinars as to her price.  And his heart was
taken up with the slave-girl Kut al-Kulub and he forsook the Lady
Zubaydah bint al-Kasim, for all she was the daughter of his father's
brother [FN#218] and he abandoned all his favorite concubines and abode
a whole month without stirring from Kut al-Kulub's side save to go to
the Friday prayers and return to her in all haste.  This was grievous
to the Lords of the Realm and they complained thereof to the Wazir
Ja'afar the Barmecide, who bore with the Commander of the Faithful and
waited till the next Friday, when he entered the cathedral-mosque and,
foregathering with the Caliph, related to him all that occurred to him
of extra-ordinary stories anent seld-seen love and lovers with intent
to draw out what was in his mind.  Quoth the Caliph, "By Allah, O
Ja'afar, this is not of my choice; but my heart is caught in the snare
of love and wot I not what is to be done!" The Wazir Ja'afar replied,
"O Commander of the Faithful, thou knowest how this girl Kut al-Kulub
is become at thy disposal and of the number of thy servants, and that
which hand possesseth soul coveteth not.  Moreover, I will tell thee
another thing which is that the highest boast of Kings and Princes is
in hunting and the pursuit of sport and victory; and if thou apply
thyself to this, perchance it will divert thee from her, and it may be
thou wilt forget her."  Rejoined the Caliph, "Thou sayest well, O
Ja'afar; come let us go a-hunting forthright, without stay or delay." 
So soon as Friday prayers were prayed, they left the mosque and at once
mounting their she-mules rode forth to the chase. —And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirty-seventh Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Caliph Harun al-Rashid and the Wazir Ja'afar would go forth a-hunting
and a-chasing, they mounted two she-mules and fared on into the open
country, occupied with talk, and their attendants outwent them. 
Presently the heat became overhot and Al-Rashid said to his Wazir, "O
Ja'afar, I am sore athirst."  Then he looked around and espying a
figure in the distance on a high mound, asked Ja'afar, "Seest thou what
I see?"  Answered the Wazir, "Yes, O Commander of the Faithful; I see a
dim figure on a high mound; belike he is the keeper of a garden or of a
cucumber- plot, and in whatso wise water will not be lacking in his
neighborhood;" presently adding, "I will go to him and fetch thee
some." But Al-Rashid said, "My mule is swifter than thy mule; so do
thou abide here, on account of the troops, whilst I go myself to him
and get of this person [FN#219] drink and return."  So saying, he urged
his she-mule, which started off like racing wind or railing-water and,
in the twinkling of an eye, made the mound, where he found the figure
he had seen to be none other than Khalifah the Fisherman, naked and
wrapped in the net; and indeed he was horrible to behold, as to and fro
he rolled with eyes for very redness like cresset-gleam and dusty hair
in dishevelled trim, as he were an Ifrit or a lion grim.  Al-Rashid
saluted him and he returned his salutation; but he was wroth and fires
might have been lit at his breath.  Quoth the Caliph, "O man, hast thou
any water?"; and quoth Khalifah, "Ho thou, art thou blind, or Jinn-mad?
 Get thee to the river Tigris, for 'tis behind this mound."  So
Al-Rashid went around the mound and going down to the river, drank and
watered his mule: then without a moment's delay he returned to Khalifah
and said to him, "What aileth thee, O man, to stand here, and what is
thy calling?" The Fisherman cried, "This is a stranger and sillier
question than that about the water!  Seest thou not the gear of my
craft on my shoulder?" Said the Caliph, "Belike thou art a fisherman?";
and he replied, "Yes."  Asked Al-Rashid, "Where is thy gaberdine,
[FN#220] and where are thy waistcloth and girdle and where be the rest
of thy raiment?"  Now these were the very things which had been taken
from Khalifah, like for like; so, when he heard the Caliph name them,
he got into his head that it was he who had stolen his clothes from the
river-bank and coming down from the top of the mound, swiftlier than
the blinding leven, laid hold of the mule's bridle, saying, "Harkye,
man, bring me back my things and leave jesting and joking."  Al-Rashid
replied, "By Allah, I have not seen thy clothes nor know aught of
them!"  Now the Caliph had large cheeks and a small mouth; [FN#221] so
Khalifah said to him, "Belike, thou art by trade a singer or a piper on
pipes?  But bring me back my clothes fairly and without more ado, or I
will bash thee with this my staff till thou bepiss thyself and befoul
they clothes."  When Al-Rashid saw the staff in the Fisherman's hand
and that he had the vantage of him, he said to himself, "By Allah, I
cannot brook from this mad beggar half a blow of that staff!"  Now he
had on a satin gown; so he pulled it off and gave it to Khalifah,
saying, "O man, take this in place of thy clothes." The Fisherman took
it and turned it about and said, "My clothes are worth ten of this
painted 'Abá-cloak;" and rejoined the Caliph, "Put it on till I bring
thee thy gear."  So Khalifah donned the gown, but finding it too long
for him, took a knife he had with him, tied to the handle of his
basket, [FN#222] and cut off nigh a third of the skirt, so that it fell
only beneath his knees.  Then he turned to Al-Rashid and said to him,
"Allah upon thee, O piper, tell me what wage thou gettest every month
from thy master, for thy craft of piping."  Replied the Caliph, "My
wage is ten dinars a month," and Khalifah continued, "By Allah, my poor
fellow, thou makest me sorry for thee! Why, I make thy ten dinars every
day!  Hast thou a mind to take service with me and I will teach thee
the art of fishing and share my gain with thee?  So shalt thou make
five dinars a day and be my slavey and I will protect thee against thy
master with this staff."  Quoth Al-Rashid, "I will well"; and quoth
Khalifah, "Then get off thy she-ass and tie her up, so she may serve us
to carry the fish hereafter, and come hither, that I may teach thee to
fish forthright."  So Al-Rashid alighted and hobbling his mule, tucked
his skirts into his girdle, and Khalifah said to him, "O piper, lay
hold of the net thus and put it over thy forearm thus and cast it into
the Tigris thus." Accordingly, the Caliph took heart of grace and,
doing as the fisherman showed him, threw the net and pulled at it, but
could not draw it up.  So Khalifah came to his aid and tugged at it
with him; but the two together could not hale it up: whereupon said the
fisherman, "O piper of ill- omen, for the first time I took thy gown in
place of my clothes; but this second time I will have thine ass and
will beat thee to boot, till thou bepiss and beskite thyself!  An I
find my net torn."  Quoth Al-Rashid, "Let the twain of us pull at
once."  So they both pulled together and succeeded with difficulty in
hauling that net ashore, when they found it full of fish of all kinds
and colours;—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirty-eighth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Khalifah
the Fisherman and the Caliph hauled that net ashore, they found it full
of fish of all kinds; and Khalifah said to Al- Rashid, "By Allah, O
piper, thou art foul of favor but, an thou apply thyself to fishing,
thou wilt make a mighty fine fisherman. But now 'twere best thou
bestraddle thine ass and make for the market and fetch me a pair of
frails, [FN#223] and I will look after the fish till thou return, when
I and thou will load it on thine ass's back.  I have scales and weights
and all we want, so we can take them with us and thou wilt have nothing
to do but to hold the scales and pouch the price; for here we have fish
worth twenty dinars.  So be fast with the frails and loiter not."
Answered the Caliph, "I hear and obey" and mounting, left him with his
fish, and spurred his mule, in high good humour, and ceased not
laughing over his adventures with the Fisherman, till he came up to
Ja'afar, who said to him, "O Commander of the Faithful, belike, when
thou wentest down to drink, thou foundest a pleasant flower-garden and
enteredst and tookest thy pleasure therein alone?"  At this Al-Rashid
fell a laughing again and all the Barmecides rose and kissed the ground
before him, saying, "O Commander of the Faithful, Allah make joy to
endure for thee and do away annoy from thee!  What was the cause of thy
delaying when thou faredst to drink and what hath befallen thee?" 
Quoth the Caliph, "Verily, a right wondrous tale and a joyous adventure
and a wondrous hath befallen me."  And he repeated to them what had
passed between himself and the Fisherman and his words, "Thou stolest
my clothes!" and how he had given him his gown and how he had cut off a
part of it, finding it too long for him. Said Ja'afar, "By Allah, O
Commander of the Faithful, I had it in mind to beg the gown of thee;
but now I will go straight to the Fisherman and buy it of him."  The
Caliph replied, "By Allah, he hath cut off a third part of the skirt
and spoilt it!  But, O Ja'afar, I am tired with fishing in the river,
for I have caught great store of fish which I left on the bank with my
master Khalifah, and he is watching them and waiting for me to return
to him with a couple of frails and a matchet. [FN#224]  Then we are to
go, I and he, to the market and sell the fish and share the price." 
Ja'afar rejoined, "O Commander of the Faithful, I will bring you a
purchaser for your fish."  And Al-Rashid retorted, "O Ja'afar, by the
virtue of my holy forefathers, whoso bringeth me one of the fish that
are before Khalifah, who taught me angling, I will give him for it a
gold dinar."  So the crier proclaimed among the troops that they should
go forth and buy fish for the Caliph, and they all arose and made for
the river-side.  Now, while Khalifah was expecting the Caliph's return
with the two frails, behold, the Mamelukes swooped down upon him like
vultures and took the fish and wrapped them in gold-embroidered
kerchiefs, beating one another in their eagerness to get at the
Fisherman. Whereupon quoth Khalifah, "Doubtless these are of the fish
of Paradise!" [FN#225] and hending two fish in right hand and left,
plunged into the water up to his neck and fell a-saying, "O Allah, by
the virtue of these fish, let Thy servant the piper, my partner, come
to me at this very moment."  And suddenly up to him came a black slave
which was the chief of the Caliph's negro eunuchs.  He had tarried
behind the rest, by reason of his horse having stopped to make water by
the way, and finding that naught remained of the fish, little or much,
looked right and left, till he espied Khalifah standing in the stream,
with a fish in either hand, and said to him, "Come hither, O
Fisherman!"  But Khalifah replied, "Begone and none of your impudence!"
[FN#226]  So the eunuch went up to him and said, "Give me the fish and
I will pay thee their price."  Replied the Fisherman, "Art thou little
of wit?  I will not sell them."  Therewith the eunuch drew his mace
upon him, and Khalifah cried out, saying, "Strike not, O loon! Better
largesse than the mace." [FN#227]  So saying, he threw the two fishes
to the eunuch, who took them and laid them in his kerchief.  Then he
put hand in pouch, but found not a single dirham and said to Khalifah,
"O Fisherman, verily thou art out of luck for, by Allah, I have not a
silver about me!  But come to- morrow to the Palace of the Caliphate
and ask for the eunuch Sandal; whereupon the castratos will direct thee
to me and by coming thither thou shalt get what falleth to thy lot and
therewith wend thy ways."  Quoth Khalifah, "Indeed, this is a blessed
day and its blessedness was manifest from the first of it!"[FN#228]
Then he shouldered his net and returned to Baghdad; and as he passed
through the streets, the folk saw the Caliph's gown on him and stared
at him till he came to the gate of his quarter, by which was the shop
of the Caliph's tailor.  When the man saw him wearing a dress of the
apparel of the Caliph, worth a thousand dinars, he said to him, "O
Khalifah, whence hadst thou that gown?"  Replied the Fisherman, "What
aileth thee to be impudent?  I had it of one whom I taught to fish and
who is become my apprentice. I forgave him the cutting off of his hand
[FN#229] for that he stole my clothes and gave me this cape in their
place." So the tailor knew that the Caliph had come upon him as he was
fishing and jested with him and given him the gown;—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Thirty-ninth Night,

She resume, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Caliph came
upon Khalifah the Fisherman and gave him his own gown in jest wherewith
the man fared home.  Such was his case; but as regards Harun al-Rashid,
he had gone out a-hunting and a-fishing only to divert his thoughts
from the damsel, Kut al-Kulub.  But when Zubaydah heard of her and of
the Caliph's devotion to her, the Lady was fired with the jealousy
which the more especially fireth women, so that she refused meat and
drink and rejected the delights of sleep and awaited the Caliph's going
forth on a journey or what not, that she might set a snare for the
damsel. So when she learnt that he was gone hunting and fishing, she
bade her women furnish the Palace fairly and decorate it splendidly and
serve up viands and confections; and amongst the rest she made a China
dish of the daintiest sweetmeats that can be made wherein she had put
Bhang.  Then she ordered one of her eunuchs go to the damsel Kut
al-Kulub and bid her to the banquet, saying, "The Lady Zubaydah bint
Al-Kasim, the wife of the Commander of the Faithful, hath drunken
medicine to-day and, having heard tell of the sweetness of thy singing,
longeth to divert herself somewhat of thine art." Kut al-Kulub replied,
"Hearing and obedience are due to Allah and the Lady Zubaydah," and
rose without stay or delay, unknowing what was hidden for her in the
Secret Purpose.  Then she took with her what instruments she needed
and, accompanying the eunuch, ceased not fairing till she stood in the
presence of the Princess.  When she entered she kissed ground before
her again and again, then rising to her feet, said, "Peace be on the
Lady of the exalted seat and the presence whereto none may avail,
daughter of the house Abbásí and scion of the Prophet's family!  May
Allah fulfil thee of peace and prosperity in the days and the years!"
[FN#230] Then she stood with the rest of the women and eunuchs, and
presently the Lady Zubaydah raised her eyes and considered her beauty
and loveliness.  She saw a damsel with cheeks smooth as rose and
breasts like granado, a face moon-bright, a brow flower-white and great
eyes black as night; her eyelids were langour-dight and her face beamed
with light, as if the sun from her forehead arose and the murks of the
night from the locks of her brow; and the fragrance of musk from her
breath strayed and flowers bloomed in her lovely face inlaid; the moon
beamed from her forehead and in her slender shape the branches swayed. 
She was like the full moon shining in the nightly shade; her eyes
wantoned, her eyebrows were like a bow arched and her lips of coral
moulded. Her beauty amazed all who espied her and her glances amated
all who eyed her.  Glory be to Him who formed her and fashioned her and
perfected her!  Brief, she was even as saith the poet of one who
favoured her,

"When she's incensed thou seest folk like slain, * And when she's
     pleased, their souls are quick again:
Her eyne are armed with glances magical * Wherewith she kills and
     quickens as she's fain.
The Worlds she leadeth captive with her eyes * As tho' the Worlds
     were all her slavish train."

Quoth the Lady Zubaydah, "Well come, and welcome and fair cheer to
thee, O Kut al-Kulub!  Sit and divert us with thine art and the
goodliness of thine accomplishments."  Quoth the damsel, "I hear and I
obey"; and, putting out her hand, took the tambourine, whereof one of
its praisers speaketh in the following verses,

"Ho thou o' the tabret, my heart takes flight * And love-smit
     cries while thy fingers smite!
Thou takest naught but a wounded heart, * The while for
     acceptance longs the wight:
So say thou word or heavy or light; * Play whate'er thou please
     it will charm the sprite.
Sois bonne, unveil thy cheek, ma belle * Rise, deftly dance and
     all hearts delight."

Then she smote the tambourine briskly and so sang thereto, that she
stopped the birds in the sky and the place danced with them blithely;
after which she laid down the tambourine and took the pipe [FN#231]
whereof it is said,

"She hath eyes whose babes wi' their fingers sign * To sweet tunes
without a discordant line."

And as the poet also said in this couplet,

"And, when she announceth the will to sing, * For Union-joy 'tis
     a time divine!"

Then she laid down the pipe, after she had charmed therewith all who
were present, and took up the lute, whereof saith the poet,

"How many a blooming bough in glee-girl's hand is fain * as
     lute to 'witch great souls by charm of cunning strain!
She sweeps tormenting lute strings by her artful touch * Wi'
     finger-tips that surely chain with endless chain."

Then she tightened its pegs and tuned its strings and laying it in her
lap, bended over it as mother bendeth over child; and it seemed as it
were of her and her lute that the poet spoke in these couplets,

"Sweetly discourses she on Persian string * And Unintelligence
     makes understand.
And teaches she that Love's a murtherer, * Who oft the reasoning
     Moslem hath unmann'd.
A maid, by Allah, in whose palm a thing * Of painted wood like
     mouth can speech command.
With lute she stauncheth flow of Love; and so * Stops flow of
     blood the cunning leach's hand."

Then she preluded in fourteen different modes and sang to the lute an
entire piece, so as to confound the gazers and delight her hearers. 
After which she recited these two couplets,

"The coming unto thee is blest: * Therein new joys for aye
Its blisses are continuous * Its blessings never end."

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

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fortieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the maiden, Kut
al-Kulub, after singing these songs and sweeping the strings in
presence of the Lady Zubaydah, rose and exhibited tricks of sleight of
hand and legerdemain and all manner pleasing arts, till the Princess
came near to fall in love with her and said to herself, "Verily, my
cousin Al-Rashid is not to blame for loving her!" Then the damsel
kissed ground before Zubaydah and sat down, whereupon they set food
before her.  Presently they brought her the drugged dish of sweetmeats
and she ate thereof; and hardly had it settled in her stomach when her
head fell backward and she sank on the ground sleeping.  With this, the
Lady said to her women, "Carry her up to one of the chambers, till I
summon her"; and they replied, "We hear and we obey."  Then said she to
one of her eunuchs, "Fashion me a chest and bring it hitherto to me!",
and shortly afterwards she bade make the semblance of a tomb and spread
the report that Kut al-Kulub had choked and died, threatening her
familiars that she would smite the neck of whoever should say, "She is
alive."  Now, behold, the Caliph suddenly returned from the chase, and
the first enquiry he made was for the damsel.  So there came to him one
of his eunuchs, whom the Lady Zubaydah had charged to declare she was
dead, if the Caliph should ask for her and, kissing ground before him,
said, "May thy head live, O my lord!  Be certified that Kut al- Kulub
choked in eating and is dead."  Whereupon cried Al-Rashid, "God never
gladden thee with good news, O thou bad slave!" and entered the Palace,
where he heard of her death from every one and asked, "Where is her
tomb?"  So they brought him to the sepulchre and showed him the
pretended tomb, saying, "This is her burial-place."  When he saw it, he
cried out and wept and embraced it, quoting these two couplets,

"By Allah, O tomb, have her beauties ceased and disappeared from
     sight * And is the countenance changed and wan, that shone
     so wonder-bright?
O tomb, O tomb, thou art neither heaven nor garden, verily: * How
     comes it then that swaying branch and moon in thee unite?

The Caliph, weeping sore for her, abode by the tomb a full hour, after
which he arose and went away, in the utmost distress and the deepest
melancholy.  So the Lady Zubaydah saw that her plot had succeeded and
forthright sent for the eunuch and said, "Hither with the chest!"  He
set it before her, when she bade bring the damsel and locking her up
therein, said to the Eunuch, "Take all pains to sell this chest and
make it a condition with the purchaser that he buy it locked; then give
alms with its price." [FN#233]  So he took it and went forth, to do her
bidding.  Thus fared it with these; but as for Khalifah the Fisherman,
when morning morrowed and shone with its light and sheen, he said to
himself, "I cannot do aught better to-day than visit the Eunuch who
bought the fish of me, for he appointed me to come to him in the Palace
of the Caliphate." So he went forth of his lodging, intending for the
palace, and when he came thither, he found Mamelukes, negro-slaves and
eunuchs standing and sitting; and looking at them, behold, seated
amongst them was the Eunuch who had taken the fish of him, with the
white slaves waiting on him.  Presently, one of the Mameluke-lads
called out to him; whereupon the Eunuch turned to see who he was an lo!
it was the Fisherman.  Now when Khalifah was ware that he saw him and
recognized him, he said to him, "I have not failed thee, O my little
Tulip! [FN#234]  On this wise are men of their word." Hearing his
address, Sandal the Eunuch [FN#235] laughed and replied, "By Allah,
thou art right, O Fisherman," and put his hand to his pouch, to give
him somewhat; but at that moment there arose a great clamour.  So he
raised his head to see what was to do and finding that it was the Wazir
Ja'afar the Barmecide coming forth from the Caliph's presence, he rose
to him and forewent him, and they walked about, conversing for a
longsome time. Khalifah the Fisherman waited awhile; then, growing
weary of standing and finding that the Eunuch took no heed of him, he
set himself in his way and beckoned to him from afar, saying, "O my
lord Tulip, give me my due and let me go!"  The Eunuch heard him, but
was ashamed to answer him because of the minister's presence; so he
went on talking with Ja'afar and took no notice whatever of the
Fisherman.  Whereupon quoth Khalifah, "O Slow o' Pay! [FN#236] May
Allah put to shame all churls and all who take folks's goods and are
niggardly with them!  I put myself under thy protection, O my lord
Bran-belly, [FN#237] to give me my due and let me go!"  The Eunuch
heard him, but was ashamed to answer him before Ja'afar; and the
Minister saw the Fisherman beckoning and talking to him, though he knew
not what he was saying; so he said to Sandal, misliking his behaviour,
"O Eunuch, what would yonder beggar with thee?"  Sandal replied, "Dost
thou not know him, O my lord the Wazir?"; and Ja'afar answered, "By
Allah, I know him not!  How should I know a man I have never seen but
at this moment?"  Rejoined the Eunuch, "O my lord, this is the
Fisherman whose fish we seized on the banks of the Tigris.  I came too
late to get any and was ashamed to return to the Prince of True
Believers, empty-handed, when all the Mamelukes had some. Presently I
espied the Fisherman standing in mid-stream, calling on Allah, with
four fishes in his hands, and said to him, 'Give me what thou hast
there and take their worth.'  He handed me the fish and I put my hand
into my pocket, purposing to gift him with somewhat, but found naught
therein and said, 'Come to me in the Palace, and I will give thee
wherewithal to aid thee in thy poverty.  So he came to me to-day and I
was putting hand to pouch, that I might give him somewhat, when thou
camest forth and I rose to wait on thee and was diverted with thee from
him, till he grew tired of waiting; and this is the whole story, how he
cometh to be standing here." —And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Forty-first Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Sandal
the Eunuch related to Ja'afar the Barmecide the tale of Khalifah the
Fisherman, ending with, "This is the whole story and how he cometh to
be standing here!" the Wazir, hearing this account, smiled and said, "O
Eunuch, how is it that this Fisherman cometh in his hour of need and
thou satisfiest him not? Dost thou not know him, O Chief of the
Eunuchs?"  "No," answered Sandal and Ja'afar said, "This is the Master
of the Commander of the Faithful, and his partner and our lord the
Caliph has arisen this morning, strait of breast, heavy of heart and
troubled of thought, nor is there aught will broaden his breast save
this fisherman.  So let him not go, till I crave the Caliph's pleasure
concerning him and bring him before him; perchance Allah will relieve
him of his oppression and console him for the loss of Kut al-Kulub, by
means of the Fisherman's presence, and he will give him wherewithal to
better himself; and thou wilt be the cause of this."  Replied Sandal,
"O my lord, do as thou wilt and may Allah Almighty long continue thee a
pillar of the dynasty of the Commander of the Faithful, whose shadow
Allah perpetuate [FN#238] and prosper it, root and branch!"  Then the
Wazir Ja'afar rose up and went in to the Caliph, and Sandal ordered the
Mamelukes not to leave the Fisherman; whereupon Khalifah cried, "How
goodly is thy bounty, O Tulip! The seeker is become the sought.  I come
to seek my due, and they imprison me for debts in arrears!" [FN#239]
When Ja'afar came in to the presence of the Caliph, he found him
sitting with his head bowed earthwards, breast straitened and mind
melancholy, humming the verses of the poet,

"My blamers instant bid that I for her become consoled; * But I,
     what can I do, whose heart declines to be controlled?
And how can I in patience bear the loss of lovely maid, * When
     fails me patience for a love that holds with firmest hold!
Ne'er I'll forget her nor the bowl that 'twixt us both went round
     * And wine of glances maddened me with drunkenness

Whenas Ja'afar stood in the presence, he said, "Peace be upon thee, O
Commander of the Faithful, Defender of the honour of the Faith and
descendant of the uncle of the Prince of the Apostles, Allah assain him
and save him and his family one and all!"  The Caliph raised his head
and answered, "And on thee be peace and the mercy of Allah and His
blessings!"  Quoth Ja'afar; "With leave of the Prince of True
Believers, his servant would speak without restraint." Asked the
Caliph, "And when was restraint put upon thee in speech and thou the
Prince of Wazirs?  Say what thou wilt."  Answered Ja'afar, "When I went
out, O my lord, from before thee, intending for my house, I saw
standing at the door thy master and teacher and partner, Khalifah the
Fisherman, who was aggrieved at thee and complained of thee saying,
'Glory be to God!  I taught him to fish and he went away to fetch me a
pair of frails, but never came back: and this is not the way of a good
partner or of a good apprentice.'  So, if thou hast a mind to
partnership, well and good; and if not, tell him, that he may take to
partner another."  Now when the Caliph heard these words he smiled and
his straitness of breast was done away with and he said, "My life on
thee, is this the truth thou sayest, that the Fisherman standeth at the
door?" and Ja'afar replied, "By thy life, O Commander of the Faithful,
he standeth at the door." Quoth the Caliph, "O Ja'afar, by Allah, I
will assuredly do my best to give him his due!  If Allah at my hands
send him misery, he shall have it; and if prosperity he shall have it."
 Then he took a piece of paper and cutting it in pieces, said to the
Wazir, "O Ja'afar, write down with thine own hand twenty sums of money,
from one dinar to a thousand, and the names of all kinds of offices and
dignities from the least appointment to the Caliphate; also twenty
kinds of punishment from the lightest beating to death." [FN#240]  "I
hear and obey, O Commander of the Faithful," answered Ja'afar, and did
as he was bidden. Then said the Caliph, "O Ja'afar, I swear by my holy
forefathers and by my kinship to Hamzah [FN#241] and Akil, [FN#242]
that I mean to summon the fisherman and bid him take one of these
papers, whose contents none knowesth save thou and I; and whatsoever is
written in the paper which he shall choose, I will give it to him;
though it be the Caliphate I will divest myself thereof and invest him
therewith and grudge it not to him; and, on the other hand, if there be
written therein hanging or mutilation or death, I will execute it upon
him.  Now go and fetch him to me."  When Ja'afar heard this, he said to
himself, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah, the
Glorious, the Great!  It may be somewhat will fall to this poor
wretch's lot that will bring about his destruction, and I shall be the
cause.  But the Caliph hath sworn; so nothing remains now but to bring
him in, and naught will happen save whatso Allah willeth."  Accordingly
he went out to Khalifah the Fisherman and laid hold of his hand to
carry him in to the Caliph, whereupon his reason fled and he said in
himself, "What a stupid I was to come after yonder ill-omened slave,
Tulip, whereby he hath brought me in company with Bran- belly!" 
Ja'afar fared on with him, with Mamelukes before and behind, whilst he
said, "Doth not arrest suffice, but these must go behind and before me,
to hinder my making off?" till they had traversed seven vestibules,
when the Wazir said to him, "Mark my words, O Fisherman!  Thou standest
before the Commander of the Faithful and Defender of the Faith!"  Then
he raised the great curtain and Khalifah's eyes fell on the Caliph, who
was seated on his couch, with the Lords of the realm standing in
attendance upon him.  As soon as he knew him, he went up to him and
said, "Well come, and welcome to thee, O piper! 'Twas not right of thee
to make thyself a Fisherman and go away, leaving me sitting to guard
the fish, and never to return!  For, before I was aware, there came up
Mamelukes on beasts of all manner colours, and snatched away the fish
from me, I standing alone, and this was all of thy fault; for, hadst
thou returned with the frails forthright, we had sold an hundred
dinars' worth of fish.  And now I come to seek my due, and they have
arrested me. But thou, who hath imprisoned thee also in this place?" 
The Caliph smiled and raising a corner of the curtain, put forth his
head and said to the Fisherman, "Come hither and take thee one of these
papers."  Quoth Khalifah the Fisherman, "Yesterday thou wast a
fisherman, and to-day thou hast become an astrologer; but the more
trades a man hath, the poorer he waxeth."  Thereupon Ja'afar said,
"Take the paper at once, and do as the Commander of the Faithful
biddeth thee without prating."  So he came forward and put forth his
hand saying, "Far be it from me that this piper should ever again be my
knave and fish with me!"  Then taking the paper he handed it to the
Caliph, saying, "O piper, what hath come out for me therein? Hide
naught thereof."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Forty-second Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when
Khalifah the Fisherman took up one of the papers and handed it to the
Caliph he said, "O piper, what have come out to me therein? Hide naught
thereof."  So Al-Rashid received it and passed it on to Ja'afar and
said to him, "Read what is therein."  He looked at it and said, "There
is no Majesty there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the
Great!"  Said the Caliph, "Good news, [FN#243] O Ja'afar?  What seest
thou therein?"  Answered the Wazir, "O Commander of the Faithful, there
came up from the paper, 'Let the Fisherman receive an hundred blows
with a stick.'"  So the Caliph commanded to beat the Fisherman and they
gave him an hundred sticks: after which he rose, saying, "Allah damn
this, O Bran-belly!  Are jail and sticks part of the game?" Then said
Ja'afar, "O Commander of the Faithful, this poor devil is come to the
river, and how shall he go away thirsting?  We hope that among the
alms-deeds of the Commander of the Faithful, he may have leave to take
another paper, so haply somewhat may come out wherewithal he may succor
his poverty." Said the Caliph, "By Allah, O Ja'afar, if he take another
paper and death be written therein, I will assuredly kill him, and thou
wilt be the cause."  Answered Ja'afar, "If he die he will be at rest." 
But Khalifah the Fisherman said to him, "Allah ne'er gladden thee with
good news!  Have I made Baghdad strait upon you, that ye seek to slay
me?"  Quoth Ja'afar, "Take thee a paper and crave the blessing of Allah
Almighty!"  So he put out his hand and taking a paper, gave it to
Ja'afar, who read it and was silent. The Caliph asked, "Why art thou
silent, O son of Yahya?"; and he answered, "O Commander of the
Faithful, there hath come out on this paper, 'Naught shall be given to
the Fisherman.'"  Then said the Caliph, "His daily bread will not come
from us: bid him fare forth from before our face."  Quoth Ja'afar, "By
the claims of thy pious forefathers, let him take a third paper, it may
be it will bring him alimony;" and quoth the Caliph, "Let him take one
and no more."  So he put out his hand and took a third paper, and
behold, therein was written, "Let the Fisherman be given one dinar." 
Ja'afar cried to him, "I sought good fortune for thee, but Allah willed
not to thee aught save this dinar."  And Khalifah answered, "Verily, a
dinar for every hundred sticks were rare good luck, may Allah not send
thy body health!"  The Caliph laughed at him and Ja'afar took him by
the hand and led him out. When he reached the door, Sandal the eunuch
saw him and said to him, "Hither, O Fisherman!  Give us portion of that
which the Commander of the Faithful hath bestowed on thee, whilst
jesting with thee."  Replied Khalifah, "By Allah, O Tulip, thou art
right!  Wilt thou share with me, O nigger?  Indeed, I have eaten stick
to the tune of an hundred blows and have earned one dinar, and thou art
but too welcome to it."  So saying, he threw him the dinar and went
out, with the tears flowing down the plain of his cheeks.  When the
Eunuch saw him in this plight, he knew that he had spoken sooth and
called to the lads to fetch him back: so they brought him back and
Sandal, putting his hand to his pouch, pulled out a red purse, whence
he emptied an hundred golden dinars into the Fisherman's hand, saying,
"Take this gold in payment of thy fish and wend thy ways."  So
Khalifah, in high good humor, took the hundred ducats and the Caliph's
one dinar and went his way, and forgot the beating.  Now, as Allah
willed it for the furthering of that which He had decreed, he passed by
the mart of the hand-maidens and seeing there a mighty ring where many
folks were foregathering, said to himself, "What is this crowd?"  So he
brake through the merchants and others, who said, "Make wide the way
for Skipper Rapscallion, [FN#244] and let him pass."  Then he looked
and behold, he saw a chest, with an eunuch seated thereon and an old
man standing by it, and the Shaykh was crying, "O merchants, O men of
money, who will hasten and hazard his coin for this chest of unknown
contents from the Palace of the Lady Zubaydah bint al-Kasim, wife of
the Commander of the Faithful?  How much shall I say for you, Allah
bless you all!" Quoth one of the merchants, "By Allah, this is a risk! 
But I will say one word and no blame to me.  Be it mine for twenty
dinars."  Quoth another, "Fifty," and they went on bidding, one against
other, till the price reached an hundred ducats.  Then said the crier,
"Will any of you bid more, O merchants?"  And Khalifah the Fisherman
said, "Be it mine for an hundred dinars and one dinar."  The merchants,
hearing these words, thought he was jesting and laughed at him, saying,
"O eunuch sell it to Khalifah for an hundred dinars and one dinar!" 
Quoth the eunuch, "By Allah, I will sell it to none but him!  Take it,
O Fisherman, the Lord bless thee in it, and here with thy gold."  So
Khalifah pulled out the ducats and gave them to the eunuch, who, the
bargain being duly made, delivered to him the chest and bestowed the
price in alms on the spot; after which he returned to the Palace and
acquainted the Lady Zubaydah with what he had done, whereat she
rejoiced.  Meanwhile the Fisherman hove the chest on shoulder, but
could not carry it on this wise for the excess of its weight; so he
lifted it on to his head and thus bore it to the quarter where he
lived.  Here he set it down and being weary, sat awhile, bemusing what
had befallen him and saying in himself, "Would Heaven I knew what is in
this chest!"  Then he opened the door of his lodging and haled the
chest until he got it into his closet; after which he strove to open
it, but failed.  Quoth he, "What folly possessed me to buy this chest? 
There is no help for it but to break it open and see what is herein." 
So he applied himself to the lock, but could not open it, and said to
himself, "I will leave it till to-morrow."  Then he would have
stretched him out to sleep, but could find no room; for the chest
filled the whole closet.  So he got upon it and lay him down; but, when
he had lain awhile, behold, he felt something stir under him whereat
sleep forsook him and his reason fled.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Forty-third Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Khalifah
the Fisherman lay down upon the chest and thus tarried awhile, behold,
something stirred beneath him; whereat he was affrighted and his reason
fled.  So he arose and cried, "Meseems there be Jinns in the chest. 
Praise to Allah who suffered me not to open it!  For, had I done so,
they had risen against me in the dark and slain me, and from them would
have befallen me naught of good." Then he lay down again when, lo! the
chest moved a second time, more than before; whereupon he sprang to his
feet and said, "There it goes again: but this is terrible!"  And he
hastened to look for the lamp, but could not find it and had not the
wherewithal to buy another.  So he went forth and cried out, "Ho,
people of the quarter!"  Now the most part of the folk were asleep; but
they awoke at his crying and asked, "What aileth thee, O Khalifah?"  He
answered, "Bring me a lamp, for the Jinn are upon me."  They laughed at
him and gave him a lamp, wherewith he returned to his closet.  Then he
smote the lock of the chest with a stone and broke it and opening it,
saw a damsel like a Houri lying asleep within.  Now she had been
drugged with Bhang, but at that moment she threw up the stuff and
awoke; then she opened her eyes and feeling herself confined and
cramped, moved. At this sight quoth Khalifah, "By Allah, O my lady,
whence art thou?"; and quoth she, "Bring me Jessamine, and Narcissus."
[FN#245]  and Khalifah answered, "There is naught here but Henna-
flowers." [FN#246]  thereupon she came to herself and considering
Khalifah, said to him, "What art thou?" presently adding, "And where am
I?"  He said, "Thou art in my lodging."  Asked she, "Am I not in the
Palace of the Caliph Harun al-Rashid?" And quoth he, "What manner of
thing is Al-Rashid? [FN#247]  O madwoman, Thou art naught but my
slave-girl: I bought thee this very day for an hundred dinars and one
dinar, and brought thee home, and thou wast asleep in this here chest."
When she had heard these words she said to him, "What is thy name?" 
Said he, "My name is Khalifah.  How comes my star to have grown
propitious, when I know my ascendant to have been otherwise?"  She
laughed and cried, "Spare me this talk!  Hast thou anything to eat?" 
Replied he, "No, by Allah, nor yet to drink!  I have not eaten these
two days and am now in want of a morsel."  She asked, "Hast thou no
money?"; and he said, "Allah keep this chest which hath beggared me: I
gave all I had for it and am become bankrupt." The damsel laughed at
him and said, "Up with thee and seek of thy neighbours somewhat for me
to eat, for I am hungry."  So he went forth and cried out, "Ho, people
of the quarter!"  Now the folk were asleep; but they awoke and asked,
"What aileth thee, O Khalifah?" Answered he, "O my neighbours, I am
hungry and have nothing to eat."  So one came down to him with a
bannock and another with broken meats and a third with a bittock of
cheese and a fourth with a cucumber; and so on till he lap was full and
he returned to his closet and laid the whole between her hands, saying,
"Eat."  But she laughed at him, saying, "How can I eat of this, when I
have not a mug of water whereof to drink?  I fear to choke with a
mouthful and die."  Quoth he, "I will fill thee this pitcher."[FN#248] 
So he took the pitcher and going forth, stood in the midst of the
street and cried out, saying, "Ho, people of the quarter!"  Quoth they,
"What calamity is upon thee to-night, [FN#249] O Khalifah!"  And he
said, "Ye gave me food and I ate; but now I am a-thirst; so give me to
drink."  Thereupon one came down to him with a mug and another with an
ewer and a third with a gugglet; and he filled his pitcher and, bearing
it back, said to the damsel, "O my lady, thou lackest nothing now." 
Answered she, "True, I want nothing more at this present." Quoth he,
"Speak to me and say me thy story."  And quoth she, "Fie upon thee! An
thou knowest me not, I will tell thee who I am.  I am Kut al-Kulub, the
Caliph's handmaiden, and the Lady Zubaydah was jealous of me; so she
drugged me with Bhang and set me in this chest," presently adding,
"Alhamdolillah—praised be God—for that the matter hath come to easy
issue and no worse!  But this befel me not save for thy good luck, for
thou wilt certainly get of the Caliph Al-Rashid money galore, that will
be the means of thine enrichment."  Quoth Khalifah, "Is not Al-Rashid
he in whose Palace I was imprisoned?"  "Yes," answered she; and he
said, "By Allah, never saw I more niggardly wight than he, that piper
little of good and wit!  He gave me an hundred blows with a stick
yesterday and but one dinar, for all I taught him to fish and made him
my partner; but he played me false."  Replied she, "Leave this unseemly
talk, and open thine eyes and look thou bear thyself respectfully,
whenas thou seest him after this, and thou shalt win thy wish."  When
he heard her words, it was if he had been asleep and awoke; and Allah
removed the veil from his judgment, because of his good luck, [FN#250]
and he answered, "On my head and eyes!" Then said he to her, "Sleep, in
the name of Allah." [FN#251]  So she lay down and fell asleep (and he
afar from her) till the morning, when she sought of him inkcase
[FN#252] and paper and, when they were brought wrote to Ibn al- Kirnas,
the Caliph's friend, acquainting him with her case and how at the end
of all that had befallen her she was with Khalifah the Fisherman, who
had bought her. Then she gave him the scroll, saying, "Take this and
hie thee to the jewel-market and ask for the shop of Ibn al-Kirnas the
Jeweller and give him this paper and speak not."  "I hear and I obey,"
answered Khalifah and going with the scroll to the market, enquired for
the shop of Ibn al- Kirnas.  They directed him to thither and on
entering it he saluted the merchant, who returned his salam with
contempt and said to him, "What dost thou want?" Thereupon he gave him
the letter and he took it, but read it not, thinking the Fisherman a
beggar, who sought an alms of him, and said to one of his lads, "Give
him half a dirham."  Quoth Khalifah, "I want no alms; read the paper."
So Ibn al-Kirnas took the letter and read it; and no sooner knew its
import than he kissed it and laying it on his head—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Forty-fourth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Ibn
al-Kirnas read the letter and knew its import, he kissed it and laid it
on his head; then he arose and said to Khalifah, "O my brother, where
is thy house?"  Asked Khalifah, "What wantest thou with my house?  Wilt
thou go thither and steal my slave-girl?" Then Ibn al-Kirnas answered,
"No so: on the contrary, I will buy thee somewhat whereof you may eat,
thou and she."  So he said, "My house is in such a quarter;" and the
merchant rejoined, "Thou hast done well.  May Allah not give thee
health, O unlucky one!" [FN#253]  Then he called out to two of his
slaves and said to them, "Carry this man to the shop of Mohsin the
Shroff and say to him, 'O Mohsin, give this man a thousand dinars of
gold;' then bring him back to me in haste."  So they carried him to the
money-changer, who paid him the money, and returned with him to their
master, whom they found mounted on a dapple she-mule worth a thousand
dinars, with Mamelukes and pages about him, and by his side another
mule like his own, saddled and bridled.  Quoth the jeweller to
Khalifah, "Bismillah, mount this mule."  Replied he, "I won't; for by
Allah, I fear she throw me;" and quoth Ibn al- Kirnas, "By God, needs
must thou mount."  So he came up and mounting her, face to crupper,
caught hold of her tail and cried out; whereupon she threw him on the
ground and they laughed at him; but he rose and said, "Did I not tell
thee I would not mount this great jenny-ass?"  Thereupon Ibn al-Kirnas
left him in the market and repairing to the Caliph, told him of the
damsel; after which he returned and removed her to his own house. 
Meanwhile, Khalifah went home to look after the handmaid and found the
people of the quarter foregathering and saying, "Verily, Khalifah is
to-day in a terrible pickle! [FN#254]  Would we knew whence he can have
gotten this damsel?"  Quoth one of them, "He is a mad pimp; haply he
found her lying on the road drunken, and carried her to his own house,
and his absence showeth that he knoweth his offence."  As they were
talking, behold, up came Khalifah, and they said to him, "What a plight
is thine, O unhappy! Knowest thou not what is come to thee?"  He
replied, "No, by Allah!" and they said, "But just now there came
Mamelukes and took away thy slave-girl whom thou stolest, and sought
for thee, but found thee not."  Asked Khalifah, "And how came they to
take my slave-girl?"; and quoth one, "Had he falled in their way, they
had slain him." But he, so far from heeding  them, returned running to
the shop of Ibn al-Kirnas, whom he met riding, and said to him, "By
Allah, 'twas not right of thee to wheedle me and meanwhile send thy
Mamelukes to take my slave-girl!" Replied the jeweller, "O idiot, come
with me and hold thy tongue."  So he took him and carried him into a
house handsomely builded, where he found the damsel seated on a couch
of gold, with ten slave-girls like moons round her. Sighting her Ibn
al-Kirnas kissed ground before her and she said, "What hast thou done
with my new master, who bought me with all he owned?"  He replied, "O
my lady, I gave him a thousand golden dinars;" and related to her
Khalifah's history from first to last, whereat she laughed and said,
"Blame him not; for he is but a common wight.  These other thousand
dinars are a gift from me to him and Almighty Allah willing, he shall
win of the Caliph what shall enrich him."  As they were talking, there
came an eunuch from the Commander of the Faithful, in quest of Kut al-
Kulub, for, when he knew that she was in the house of Ibn al- Kirnas,
he could not endure the severance, but bade bring her forthwith.  So
she repaired to the Palace, taking Khalifah with her, and going into
the presence, kissed ground before the Caliph, who rose to her,
saluting and welcoming her, and asked her how she had fared with him
who had bought her. She replied, "He is a man, Khalifah the Fisherman
hight, and there he standeth at the door.  He telleth me that he hath
an account to settle with the Commander of the Faithful, by reason of a
partnership between him and the Caliph in fishing."  Asked Al-Rashid,
"Is he at the door?" and she answered, "Yes."  So the Caliph sent for
him and he kissed ground before him and wished him endurance of glory
and prosperity.  The Caliph marvelled at him and laughed at him and
said to him, "O Fisherman, wast thou in very deed my partner [FN#255]
yesterday?"  Khalifah took his meaning and heartening his heart and
summoning spirit replied, "By Him who bestowed upon thee the succession
to thy cousin, [FN#256] I know her not in anywise and have had no
commerce with her save by way of sight and speech!"  Then he repeated
to him all that had befallen him, since he last saw him, [FN#257]
whereat the Caliph laughed and his breast broadened and he said to
Khalifah, "Ask of us what thou wilt, O thou who bringest to owners
their own!"  But he was silent; so the Caliph ordered him fifty
thousand dinars of gold and a costly dress of honour such as great
Sovrans don, and a she-mule, and gave him black slaves of the Súdán to
serve him, so that he became as he were one of the Kings of that time. 
The Caliph was rejoiced at the recovery of his favourite and knew that
all this was the doing of his cousin-wife, the Lady Zubaydah,—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Eight Hundred and Forty-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Caliph
rejoiced at the recovery of Kut al-Kulub and knew that all this was the
doing of the Lady Zubaydah, his cousin-wife; wherefore he was sore
enraged against her and held aloof from her a great while, visiting her
not neither inclining to pardon her. When she was certified of this,
she was sore concerned for his wrath and her face, that was wont to be
rosy, waxed pale and wan till, when her patience was exhausted, she
sent a letter to her cousin, the Commander of the Faithful making her
excuses to him and confessing her offences, and ending with these

"I long once more the love that was between us to regain, * That
     I may quench the fire of grief and bate the force of bane.
O lords of me, have ruth upon the stress my passion deals *
     Enough to me is what you doled of sorrow and of pain.
'Tis life to me an deign you keep the troth you deigned to plight
     * 'Tis death to me an troth you break and fondest vows
Given I've sinned a sorry sin, ye grant me ruth, for naught * By
     Allah, sweeter is than friend who is of pardon fain."

When the Lady Zubaydah's letter reached the Caliph, and reading it he
saw that she confessed her offence and sent her excuses to him
therefor, he said to himself, "Verily, all sins doth Allah forgive;
aye, Gracious, Merciful is He!" [FN#258]  And he returned her an
answer, expressing satisfaction and pardon and forgiveness for what was
past, whereat she rejoiced greatly.  As for Khalifah, the Fisherman,
the Caliph assigned him a monthly solde of fifty dinars and took him
into especial favour, which would lead to rank and dignity, honour and
worship.  Then he kissed ground before the Commander of the Faithful
and went forth with stately gait.  When he came to the door, the Eunuch
Sandal, who had given him the hundred dinars, saw him and knowing him,
said to him, "O Fisherman, whence all this?"  So he told him all that
had befallen him, first and last, whereat Sandal rejoiced, because he
had been the cause of his enrichment, and said to him, "Wilt thou not
give me largesse of this wealth which is now become thine?"  So
Khalifah put hand to pouch and taking out a purse containing a thousand
dinars, gave it to the Eunuch, who said, "Keep thy coins and Allah
bless thee therein!" and marvelled at his manliness and at the
liberality of his soul, for all his late poverty. [FN#259]  Then
leaving the eunuch, Khalifah mounted his she-mule and rode, with the
slaves' hands on her crupper, till he came to his lodging at the Khan,
whilst the folk stared at him in surprise for that which had betided
him of advancement.  When he alighted from his beast they accosted him
and enquired the cause of his change from poverty to prosperity, and he
told them all that had happened to him from incept to conclusion.  Then
he bought a fine mansion and laid out thereon much money, till it was
perfect in all points.  And he took up his abode therein and was wont
to recite thereon these two couplets,

"Behold a house that's like the Dwelling of Delight; [FN#260] *
     Its aspect heals the sick and banishes despite.
Its sojourn for the great and wise appointed it, * And Fortune
     fair therein abideth day and night."

Then, as soon as he was settled in his house, he sought him in marriage
the daughter of one of the chief men of the city, a handsome girl, and
went in unto her and led a life of solace and satisfaction, joyaunce
and enjoyment; and he rose to passing affluence and exceeding
prosperity.  So, when he found himself in this fortunate condition, he
offered up thanks to Allah (extolled and excelled be He!) for what He
had bestowed on him of wealth exceeding and of favours ever succeeding,
praising his Lord with the praise of the grateful and chanting the
words of the poet,

"To Thee be praise, O Thou who showest unremitting grace; * O
     Thou whose universal bounties high and low embrace!
To Thee be praise from me! Then deign accept my praise for I *
     Accept Thy boons and gifts with grateful soul in every case.
Thou hast with favours overwhelmed me, benefits and largesse *
     And gracious doles my memory ne'er ceaseth to retrace.
All men from mighty main, Thy grace and goodness, drain and
     drink; * And in their need Thou, only Thou, to them art
So for the sake of him who came to teach mankind in ruth *
     Prophet, pure, truthful-worded scion of the noblest race;
Ever be Allah's blessing and His peace on him and all * His aids
     [FN#261] and kin while pilgrims fare his noble tomb to face!
And on his helpmeets [FN#262] one and all, Companions great and
     good, * Through time Eternal while the bird shall sing in
     shady wood!"

And thereafter Khalifah continued to pay frequent visits to the Caliph
Harun al-Rashid, with whom he found acceptance and who ceased not to
overwhelm him with boons and bounty: and he abode in the enjoyment of
the utmost honour and happiness and joy and gladness and in riches more
than sufficing and in rank ever rising; brief, a sweet life and a
savoury, pure as pleasurable, till there came to him the Destroyer of
delights and the Sunderer of societies; and extolled be the perfection
of Him to whom belong glory and permanence and He is the Living, the
Eternal, who shall never die!

NOTE.  I have followed the example of Mr. Payne and have translated in
its entirety the Tale of Khalifah the Fisherman from the Breslau Edit.
(Vol. iv. pp. 315-365, Night cccxxi- cccxxxii.) in preference to the
unsatisfactory process of amalgamating it with that of the Mac. Edit.
given above.

Khalif the Fisherman of Baghdad.

There was once, in days of yore and in ages and times long gone before,
in the city of Baghdad, a fisherman, by name Khalíf, a man of muckle
talk and little luck. One day, as he sat in his cell,[FN#263] he
bethought himself and said, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might
save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great! Would Heaven I knew what is my
offence in the sight of my Lord and what caused the blackness of my
fortune and my littleness of luck among the fishermen, albeit (and I
say it who should not) in the city of Baghdad there is never a
fisherman like myself." Now he lodged in a ruined place called a Khan,
to wit, an inn,[FN#264] without a door, and when he went forth to fish,
he would shoulder the net, without basket or fish-slicers,[FN#265] and
when the folk would stare at him and say to him, "O Khalif, why not
take with thee a basket, to hold the fish thou catchest?"; he would
reply, "Even as I carry it forth empty, so would it come back, for I
never manage to catch aught." One night he arose, in the darkness
before dawn, and taking his net on his shoulder, raised his eyes to
heaven and said, "Allah mine, O Thou who subjectedst the sea to Moses
son of Imrán, give me this day my daily bread, for Thou art the best of
bread-givers!" Then he went down to the Tigris and spreading his net,
cast it into the river and waited till it had settled down, when he
haled it in and drew it ashore, but behold, it held naught save a dead
dog. So he cast away the carcase, saying, "O morning of ill doom! What
a handsel is this dead hound, after I had rejoiced in its
weight[FN#266]!" Then he mended the rents in the net, saying, "Needs
must there after this carrion be fish in plenty, attracted by the
smell," and made a second cast. After awhile, he drew up and found in
the net the hough[FN#267] of a camel, that had caught in the meshes and
rent them right and left. When Khalif saw his net in this state, he
wept and said, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in
Allah, the Glorious, the Great! I wonder what is my offence and the
cause of the blackness of my fortune and the littleness of my luck, of
all folk, so that I catch neither cat-fish nor sprat,[FN#268] that I
may broil on the embers and eat, for all I dare say there is not in the
city of Baghdad a fisherman like me." Then with a Bismillah he cast his
net a third time, and presently drawing it ashore found therein an ape
scurvy and one-eyed, mangy, and limping hending an ivory rod in
forehand. When Khalif saw this, he said, "This is indeed a blessed
opening! What art thou, O ape?" "Dost thou not know me?" "No, by Allah,
I have no knowledge of thee!" "I am thine ape!" "What use is there in
thee, O my ape?" "Every day I give thee good-morrow, so Allah may not
open to thee the door of daily bread." "Thou failest not of this, O
one-eye[FN#269] of ill-omen! May Allah never bless thee! Needs must I
pluck out thy sound eye and cut off thy whole leg, so thou mayst become
a blind cripple and I be quit of thee. But what is the use of that rod
thou hendest in hand?" "O Khalif, I scare the fish therewith, so they
may not enter thy net." "Is it so?: then this very day will I punish
thee with a grievous punishment and devise thee all manner torments and
strip thy flesh from thy bones and be at rest from thee, sorry bit of
goods that thou art!" So saying, Khalif the Fisherman unwound from his
middle a strand of rope and binding him to a tree by his side, said,
"Lookee, O dog of an ape! I mean to cast the net again and if aught
come up therein, well and good; but, if it come up empty, I will verily
and assuredly make an end of thee, with the cruellest tortures and be
quit of thee, thou stinking lot." So he cast the net and drawing it
ashore, found in it another ape and said, "Glory be to God the Great! I
was wont to pull naught but fish out of this Tigris, but now it
yieldeth nothing but apes." Then he looked at the second ape and saw
him fair of form and round of face with pendants of gold in his ears
and a blue waistcloth about his middle, and he was like unto a lighted
taper. So he asked him, "What art thou, thou also, O ape?"; and he
answered, saying, "O Khalif, I am the ape of Abú al-Sa'ádát the Jew,
the Caliph's Shroff. Every day, I give him good-morrow, and he maketh a
profit of ten gold pieces." Cried the Fisherman, "By Allah, thou art a
fine ape, not like this ill-omened monkey o' mine!" So saying, he took
a stick[FN#270] and came down upon the sides of the ape, till he broke
his ribs and he jumped up and down. And the other ape, the handsome
one, answered him, saying, "O Khalif, what will it profit thee to beat
him, though thou belabour him till he die?" Khalif replied, "How shall
I do? Shall I let him wend his ways that he may scare me the fish with
his hang-dog face and give me good-even and good-morrow every day, so
Allah may not open to me the door of daily bread? Nay, I will kill him
and be quit of him and I will take thee in his stead; so shalt thou
give me good-morrow and I shall gain ten golden dinars a day."
Thereupon the comely ape made answer, "I will tell thee a better way
than that, and if thou hearken to me, thou shalt be at rest and I will
become thine ape in lieu of him." Asked the Fisherman, "And what dost
thou counsel me?"; and the ape answered, saying, "Cast thy net and thou
shalt bring up a noble fish, never saw any its like, and I will tell
thee how thou shalt do with it." Replied Khalif, "Lookee, thou too! An
I throw my net and there come up therein a third ape, be assured that I
will cut the three of you into six bits." And the second ape rejoined,
"So be it, O Khalif. I agree to this thy condition." Then Khalif spread
the net and cast it and drew it up, when behold, in it was a fine young
barbel[FN#271] with a round head, as it were a milking-pail, which when
he saw, his wits fled for joy and he said, "Glory be to God! What is
this noble creature? Were yonder apes in the river, I had not brought
up this fish." Quoth the seemly ape, "O Khalif, an thou give ear to my
rede, 'twill bring thee good fortune"; and quoth the Fisherman, "May
God damn him who would gainsay thee henceforth!" Thereupon the ape
said, "O Khalif, take some grass and lay the fish thereon in the
basket[FN#272] and cover it with more grass and take also somewhat of
basil[FN#273] from the greengrocer's and set it in the fish's mouth.
Cover it with a kerchief and push thee through the bazar of Baghdad.
Whoever bespeaketh thee of selling it, sell it not but fare on, till
thou come to the market street of the jewellers and money-changers.
Then count five shops on the right-hand side and the sixth shop is that
of Abu al-Sa'adat the Jew, the Caliph's Shroff. When thou standest
before him, he will say to thee, 'What seekest thou?'; and do thou make
answer, 'I am a fisherwight, I threw my net in thy name and took this
noble barbel, which I have brought thee as a present.' If he give thee
aught of silver, take it not, be it little or mickle, for it will spoil
that which thou wouldst do, but say to him, 'I want of thee naught save
one word, that thou say to me, 'I sell thee my ape for thine ape and my
luck for thy luck.' An the Jew say this, give him the fish and I shall
become thine ape and this crippled, mangy and one-eyed ape will be his
ape." Khalif replied, "Well said, O ape," nor did he cease faring
Baghdad-wards and observing that which the ape had said to him, till he
came to the Jew's shop and saw the Shroff seated, with eunuchs and
pages about him, bidding and forbidding and giving and taking. So he
set down his basket, saying, "O Sultan of the Jews, I am a fisher-wight
and went forth to-day to the Tigris and casting my net in thy name,
cried, 'This is for the luck of Abu al-Sa'adat;' and there came up to
me this Banni which I have brought thee by way of present." Then he
lifted the grass and discovered the fish to the Jew, who marvelled at
its make and said, "Extolled be the perfection of the Most Excellent
Creator!" Then he gave the fisherman a dinar, but he refused it and he
gave him two. This also he refused and the Jew stayed not adding to his
offer, till he made it ten dinars; but he still refused and Abu
al-Sa'adat said to him, "By Allah, thou art a greedy one. Tell me what
thou wouldst have, O Moslem!" Quoth Khalif, "I would have of thee but a
single word. [FN#274]" When the Jew heard this, he changed colour and
said, "Wouldst thou oust me from my faith? Wend thy ways;" and Khalif
said to him, "By Allah, O Jew, naught mattereth an thou become a Moslem
or a Nazarene!" Asked the Jew, "Then what wouldst thou have me say?";
and the fisherman answered, "Say, I sell thee my ape for thy ape and my
luck for thy luck." The Jew laughed, deeming him little of wit, and
said by way of jest, "I sell thee my ape for thy ape and my luck for
thy luck. Bear witness against him, O merchants! By Allah, O unhappy,
thou art debarred from further claim on me!" So Khalif turned back,
blaming himself and saying, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might
save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great! Alas that I did not take the
gold!" and fared on blaming himself in the matter of the money till he
came to the Tigris, but found not the two apes, whereupon he wept and
slapped his face and strewed dust on his head, saying, "But that the
second ape wheedled me and put a cheat on me, the one-eyed ape had not
escaped." And he gave not over wailing and weeping, till heat and
hunger grew sore on him: so he took the net, saying, "Come, let us make
a cast, trusting in Allah's blessing; belike I may catch a cat-fish or
a barbel which I may boil and eat." So he threw the net and waiting
till it had settled, drew it ashore and found it full of fish, whereat
he was consoled and rejoiced and busied himself with unmeshing the fish
and casting them on the earth. Presently, up came a woman seeking fish
and crying out, "Fish is not to be found in the town." She caught sight
of Khalif, and said to him, "Wilt thou sell this fish, O Master?"
Answered Khalif, "I am going to turn it into clothes, 'tis all for
sale, even to my beard.[FN#275] Take what thou wilt." So she gave him a
dinar and he filled her basket. Then she went away and behold, up came
another servant, seeking a dinar's worth of fish; nor did the folk
cease till it was the hour of mid-afternoon prayer and Khalif had sold
ten golden dinars' worth of fish. Then, being faint and famisht, he
folded and shouldered his net and, repairing to the market, bought
himself a woollen gown, a calotte with a plaited border and a
honey-coloured turband for a dinar receiving two dirhams by way of
change, wherewith he purchased fried cheese and a fat sheep's tail and
honey and setting them in the oilman's platter, ate till he was full
and his ribs felt cold[FN#276] from the mighty stuffing. Then he
marched off to his lodgings in the magazine, clad in the gown and the
honey-coloured turband and with the nine golden dinars in his mouth,
rejoicing in what he had never in his life seen. He entered and lay
down, but could not sleep for anxious thoughts and abode playing with
the money half the night. Then said he in himself, "Haply the Caliph
may hear that I have gold and say to Ja'afar, 'Go to Khalif the
Fisherman and borrow us some money of him.' If I give it him, it will
be no light matter to me, and if I give it not, he will torment me; but
torture is easier to me than the giving up of the cash.[FN#277]
However, I will arise and make trial of myself if I have a skin proof
against stick or not." So he put off his clothes and taking a sailor's
plaited whip, of an hundred and sixty strands, ceased not beating
himself, till his sides and body were all bloody, crying out at every
stroke he dealt himself and saying "O Moslems! I am a poor man! O
Moslems, I am a poor man! O Moslems, whence should I have gold, whence
should I have coin?" till the neighbours, who dwelt with him in that
place, hearing him crying and saying, "Go to men of wealth and take of
them," thought that thieves were torturing him, to get money from him,
and that he was praying for aidance. Accordingly they flocked to him
each armed with some weapon and finding the door of his lodging locked
and hearing him roaring out for help, deemed that the thieves had come
down upon him from the terrace-roof; so they fell upon the door and
burst it open. Then they entered and found him mother-naked and
bareheaded with body dripping blood, and altogether in a sad pickle; so
they asked him, "What is this case in which we find thee? Hast thou
lost thy wits and hath Jinn-madness betided thee this night?" And he
answered them, "Nay; but I have gold with me and I feared lest the
Caliph send to borrow of me and it were no light matter to give him
aught; yet, an I gave not to him 'tis only too sure that he would put
me to the torture; wherefore I arose to see if my skin were stick-proof
or not." When they heard these words they said to him, "May Allah not
assain thy body, unlucky madman that thou art! Of a surety thou art
fallen mad to-night! Lie down to sleep, may Allah never bless thee! How
many thousand dinars hast thou, that the Caliph should come and borrow
of thee?" He replied, "By Allah, I have naught but nine dinars." And
they all said, "By Allah, he is not otherwise than passing rich!" Then
they left him wondering at his want of wit, and Khalif took his cash
and wrapped it in a rag, saying to himself, "Where shall I hide all
this gold? An I bury it, they will take it, and if I put it out on
deposit, they will deny that I did so, and if I carry it on my
head,[FN#278] they will snatch it, and if I tie it to my sleeve, they
will cut it away." Presently, he espied a little breast-pocket in the
gown and said, "By Allah, this is fine! 'Tis under my throat and hard
by my mouth: if any put out his hand to hend it, I can come down on it
with my mouth and hide it in my throttle." So he set the rag containing
the gold in the pocket and lay down, but slept not that night for
suspicion and trouble and anxious thought. On the morrow, he fared
forth of his lodging on fishing intent and, betaking himself to the
river, went down into the water, up to his knees. Then he threw the net
and shook it with might and main; whereupon the purse fell down into
the stream. So he tore off gown and turband and plunged in after it,
saying, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah, the
Glorious, the Great!" Nor did he give over diving and searching the
stream-bed, till the day was half spent, but found not the purse. Now
one saw him from afar diving and plunging and his gown and turband
lying in the sun at a distance from him, with no one by them; so he
watched him, till he dived again when he dashed at the clothes and made
off with them. Presently, Khalif came ashore and, missing his gown and
turband, was chagrined for their loss with passing cark and care and
ascended a mound, to look for some passer-by, of whom he might enquire
concerning them, but found none. Now the Caliph Harun al-Rashid had
gone a-hunting and chasing that day; and, returning at the time of the
noon heat, was oppressed thereby and thirsted; so he looked for water
from afar and seeing a naked man standing on the mound said to Ja'afar,
"Seest thou what I see?" Replied the Wazir, "Yes, O Commander of the
Faithful; I see a man standing on a hillock." Al-Rashid asked, "What is
he?"; and Ja'afar answered, "Haply he is the guardian of a
cucumber-plot." Quoth the Caliph, "Perhaps he is a pious man[FN#279]; I
would fain go to him, alone, and desire of him his prayers; and abide
ye where you are." So he went up to Khalif and saluting him with the
salam said to him, "What art thou, O man?" Replied the fisherman, "Dost
thou not know me? I am Khalif the Fisherman;" and the Caliph rejoined,
"What? The Fisherman with the woollen gown and the honey-coloured
turband[FN#280]?" When Khalif heard him name the clothes he had lost,
he said in himself, "This is he who took my duds: belike he did but
jest with me." So he came down from the knoll and said, "Can I not take
a noontide nap[FN#281] but thou must trick me this trick? I saw thee
take my gear and knew that thou wast joking with me." At this, laughter
got the better of the Caliph and he said; "What clothes hast thou lost?
I know nothing of that whereof thou speakest, O Khalif." Cried the
Fisherman, "By God the Great, except thou bring me back the gear, I
will smash thy ribs with this staff!" (For he always carried a
quarterstaff.) Quoth the Caliph, "By Allah, I have not seen the things
whereof thou speakest!"; and quoth Khalif "I will go with thee and take
note of thy dwelling-place and complain of thee to the Chief of Police,
so thou mayst not trick me this trick again. By Allah, none took my
gown and turband but thou, and except thou give them back to me at
once, I will throw thee off the back of that she-ass thou ridest and
come down on thy pate with this quarterstaff, till thou canst not
stir!" Thereupon he tugged at the bridle of the mule so that she reared
up on her hind legs and the Caliph said to himself, "What calamity is
this I have fallen into with this madman?" Then he pulled off a gown he
had on, worth an hundred dinars, and said to Khalif, "Take this gown in
lieu of thine own." He took it and donning it saw it was too long; so
he cut it short at the knees and turbanded his head with the cut-off
piece; then said to the Caliph, "What art thou and what is thy craft?
But why ask? Thou art none other than a trumpeter." Al-Rashid asked,
"What showed thee that I was a trumpeter by trade?"; and Khalif
answered, "Thy big nostrils and little mouth." Cried the Caliph, "Well
guessed! Yes, I am of that craft." Then said Khalif, "An thou wilt
hearken to me, I will teach thee the art of fishing: 'twill be better
for thee than trumpeting and thou wilt eat lawfully[FN#282]." Replied
the Caliph, "Teach it me so that I may see whether I am capable of
learning it." And Khalif said, "Come with me, O trumpeter." So the
Caliph followed him down to the river and took the net from him, whilst
he taught him how to throw it. Then he cast it and drew it up, when,
behold, it was heavy, and the fisherman said, "O trumpeter, an the net
be caught on one of the rocks, drag it not too hard, or 'twill break
and by Allah, I will take thy she-ass in payment thereof!" The Caliph
laughed at his words and drew up the net, little by little, till he
brought it ashore and found it full of fish; which when Khalif saw, his
reason fled for joy and presently he cried, "By Allah, O trumpeter, thy
luck is good in fishing! Never in my life will I part with thee! But
now I mean to send thee to the fish-bazar, where do thou enquire for
the shop of Humayd the fisherman and say to him, 'My master Khalif
saluteth thee and biddeth thee send him a pair of frails and a knife,
so he may bring thee more fish than yesterday.' Run and return to me
forthright!" The Caliph replied (and indeed he was laughing), "On my
head, O master!" and, mounting his mule, rode back to Ja'afar, who said
to him, "Tell me what hath betided thee." So the Caliph told him all
that had passed between Khalif the Fisherman and himself, from first to
last, adding, "I left him awaiting my return to him with the baskets
and I am resolved that he shall teach me how to scale fish and clean
them." Quoth Ja'afar, "And I will go with thee to sweep up the scales
and clean out the shop." And the affair abode thus, till presently the
Caliph cried, "O Ja'afar, I desire of thee that thou despatch the young
Mamelukes, saying to them, 'Whoso bringeth me a fish from before yonder
fisherman, I will give him a dinar;' for I love to eat of my own
fishing." Accordingly Ja'afar repeated to the young white slaves what
the Caliph had said and directed them where to find the man. They came
down upon Khalif and snatched the fish from him; and when he saw them
and noted their goodliness, he doubted not but that they were of the
black-eyed Houris of Paradise: so he caught up a couple of fish and ran
into the river, saying, "O Allah mine, by the secret virtue of these
fish, forgive me!" Suddenly, up came the chief eunuch, questing fish,
but he found none; so seeing Khalif ducking and rising in the water,
with the two fish in his hands, called out to him, saying, "O Khalif,
what hast thou there?" Replied the fisherman, "Two fish," and the
eunuch said, "Give them to me and take an hundred dinars for them." Now
when Khalif heard speak of an hundred dinars, he came up out of the
water and cried, "Hand over the hundred dinars." Said the eunuch,
"Follow me to the house of Al-Rashid and receive thy gold, O Khalif;"
and, taking the fish, made off to the Palace of the Caliphate.
Meanwhile Khalif betook himself to Baghdad, clad as he was in the
Caliph's gown, which reached only to above his knees,[FN#283] turbanded
with the piece he had cut off therefrom and girt about his middle with
a rope, and he pushed through the centre of the city. The folk fell
a-laughing and marvelling at him and saying, "Whence hadst thou that
robe of honour?" But he went on, asking, "Where is the house of
Al-Rashád[FN#284]?;" and they answered, "Say, 'The house of
Al-Rashíd';" and he rejoined, "'Tis all the same," and fared on, till
he came to the Palace of the Caliphate. Now he was seen by the tailor,
who had made the gown and who was standing at the door, and when he
noticed it upon the Fisherman, he said to him, "For how many years hast
thou had admission to the palace?" Khalif replied, "Ever since I was a
little one;" and the tailor asked, "Whence hadest thou that gown thou
hast spoilt on this wise?" Khalif answered, "I had it of my apprentice
the trumpeter." Then he went up to the door, where he found the Chief
Eunuch sitting with the two fishes by his side: and seeing him
sable-black of hue, said to him, "Wilt thou not bring the hundred
dinars, O uncle Tulip?" Quoth he, "On my head, O Khalif," when, behold,
out came Ja'afar from the presence of the Caliph and seeing the
fisherman talking with the Eunuch and saying to him, "This is the
reward of goodness, O nuncle Tulip," went in to Al-Rashid and said to
him, "O Commander of the Faithful, thy master the Fisherman is with the
Chief Eunuch, dunning him for an hundred dinars." Cried the Caliph,
"Bring him to me, O Ja'afar;" and the Minister answered, "Hearing and
obeying." So he went out to the Fisherman and said to him, "O Khalif,
thine apprentice the trumpeter biddeth thee to him;" then he walked on,
followed by the other till they reached the presence-chamber, where he
saw the Caliph seated, with a canopy over his head. When he entered,
Al-Rashid wrote three scrolls and set them before him, and the
Fisherman said to him, "So thou hast given up trumpeting and turned
astrologer!" Quoth the Caliph to him, "Take thee a scroll." Now in the
first he had written, "Let him be given a gold piece," in the second,
"An hundred dinars," and in the third, "Let him be given an hundred
blows with a whip." So Khalif put out his hand and by the decree of the
Predestinator, it lighted on the scroll wherein was written, "Let him
receive an hundred lashes," and Kings, whenas they ordain aught, go not
back therefrom. So they threw him prone on the ground and beat him an
hundred blows, whilst he wept and roared for succour, but none
succoured him, and said, "By Allah, this is a good joke O trumpeter! I
teach thee fishing and thou turnest astrologer and drawest me an
unlucky lot. Fie upon thee,[FN#285] in thee is naught of good!" When
the Caliph heard his speech, he fell fainting in a fit of laughter and
said, "O Khalif, no harm shall betide thee: fear not. Give him an
hundred gold pieces." So they gave him an hundred dinars, and he went
out, and ceased not faring forth till he came to the trunk-market,
where he found the folk assembled in a ring about a broker, who was
crying out and saying, "At an hundred dinars, less one dinar! A locked
chest!" So he pressed on and pushed through the crowd and said to the
broker, "Mine for an hundred dinars!" The broker closed with him and
took his money, whereupon there was left him nor little nor much. The
porters disputed awhile about who should carry the chest and presently
all said, "By Allah, none shall carry this chest but Zurayk!"[FN#286]
And the folk said, "Blue-eyes hath the best right to it." So Zurayk
shouldered the chest, after the goodliest fashion, and walked a-rear of
Khalif. As they went along, the Fisherman said in himself, "I have
nothing left to give the porter; how shall I rid myself of him? Now I
will traverse the main streets with him and lead him about, till he be
weary and set it down and leave it, when I will take it up and carry it
to my lodging." Accordingly, he went round about the city with the
porter from noontide to sundown, till the man began to grumble and
said, "O my lord, where is thy house?" Quoth Khalif, "Yesterday I knew
it, but to-day I have forgotten it." And the porter said, "Give me my
hire and take thy chest." But Khalif said, "Go on at thy leisure, till
I bethink me where my house is," presently adding, "O Zurayk, I have no
money with me. 'Tis all in my house and I have forgotten where it is."
As they were talking, there passed by them one who knew the Fisherman
and said to him, "O Khalif, what bringeth thee hither?" Quoth the
porter, "O uncle, where is Khalif's house?" and quoth he, "'Tis in the
ruined Khan in the Rawásín Quarter."[FN#287] Then said Zurayk to
Khalif, "Go to; would Heaven thou hadst never lived nor been!" And the
Fisherman trudged on, followed by the porter, till they came to the
place when the Hammal said, "O thou whose daily bread Allah cut off in
this world, have we not passed this place a score of times? Hadst thou
said to me, 'Tis in such a stead, thou hadst spared me this great toil;
but now give me my wage and let me wend my way." Khalif replied "Thou
shalt have silver, if not gold. Stay here, till I bring thee the same."
So he entered his lodging and taking a mallet he had there, studded
with forty nails (wherewith an he smote a camel, he had made an end of
it), rushed upon the porter and raised his forearm to strike him
therewith; but Zurayk cried out at him, saying, "Hold thy hand! I have
no claim on thee," and fled. Now having got rid of the Hammal, Khalif
carried the chest into the Khan, whereupon the neighbours came down and
flocked about him, saying, "O Khalif, whence hadst thou this robe and
this chest?" Quoth he, "From my apprentice Al-Rashid who gave them to
me," and they said, "The pimp is mad! Al-Rashid will assuredly hear of
his talk and hang him over the door of his lodging and hang all in the
Khan on account of the droll. This is a fine farce!" Then they helped
him to carry the chest into his lodging and it filled the whole
closet.[FN#288] Thus far concerning Khalif; but as for the history of
the chest, it was as follows: The Caliph had a Turkish slave-girl, by
name Kut al-Kulúb, whom he loved with love exceeding and the Lady
Zubaydah came to know of this from himself and was passing jealous of
her and secretly plotted mischief against her. So, whilst the Commander
of the Faithful was absent a-sporting and a-hunting, she sent for Kut
al-Kulub and, inviting her to a banquet, set before her meat and wine,
and she ate and drank. Now the wine was drugged with Bhang; so she
slept and Zubaydah sent for her Chief Eunuch and putting her in a great
chest, locked it and gave it to him, saying, "Take this chest and cast
it into the river." Thereupon he took it up before him on a he-mule and
set out with it for the sea, but found it unfit to carry; so, as he
passed by the trunk-market, he saw the Shaykh of the brokers and
salesmen and said to him, "Wilt thou sell me this chest, O uncle?" The
broker replied, "Yes, we will do this much." "But," said the Eunuch,
"look thou sell it not except locked;" and the other, "'Tis well; we
will do that also."[FN#289] So he set down the chest, and they cried it
for sale, saying, "Who will buy this chest for an hundred dinars?"; and
behold, up came Khalif the Fisherman and bought the chest after turning
it over right and left; and there passed between him and the porter
that which hath been before set out. Now as regards Khalif the
Fisherman; he lay down on the chest to sleep, and presently Kut
al-Kulub awoke from her Bhang and finding herself in the chest, cried
out and said, "Alas!" Whereupon Khalif sprang off the chest-lid and
cried out and said, "Ho, Moslems! Come to my help! There are Ifrits in
the chest." So the neighbours awoke from sleep and said to him, "What
mattereth thee, O madman?" Quoth he, "The chest is full of Ifrits;" and
quoth they, "Go to sleep; thou hast troubled our rest this night may
Allah not bless thee! Go in and sleep, without madness." He ejaculated,
"I cannot sleep;" but they abused him and he went in and lay down once
more. And behold, Kut al-Kulub spoke and said, "Where am I?" Upon which
Khalif fled forth the closet and said, "O neighbours of the hostelry,
come to my aid!" Quoth they, "What hath befallen thee? Thou troublest
the neighbours' rest." "O folk, there be Ifrits in the chest, moving
and speaking." "Thou liest: what do they say?" "They say, 'Where am
I?'" "Would Heaven thou wert in Hell! Thou disturbest the neighbours
and hinderest them of sleep. Go to sleep, would thou hadst never lived
nor been!" So Khalif went in fearful because he had no place wherein to
sleep save upon the chest-lid when lo! as he stood, with ears listening
for speech, Kut al-Kulub spake again and said, "I'm hungry." So in sore
affright he fled forth and cried out, "Ho neighbours! ho dwellers in
the Khan, come aid me!" Said they, "What is thy calamity now?"[FN#290]
And he answered, "The Ifrits in the chest say, 'We are hungry.'" Quoth
the neighbours one to other, "'Twould seem Khalif is hungry; let us
feed him and give him the supper-orts; else he will not let us sleep
to-night." So they brought him bread and meat and broken victuals and
radishes and gave him a basket full of all kinds of things, saying,
"Eat till thou be full and go to sleep and talk not, else will we break
thy ribs and beat thee to death this very night." So he took the basket
with the provaunt and entered his lodging. Now it was a moonlight night
and the moon shone in full sheen upon the chest and lit up the closet
with its light, seeing this he sat down on his purchase and fell to
eating of the food with both hands. Presently Kut al-Kulub spake again
and said, "Open to me and have mercy upon me, O Moslems!" So Khalif
arose and taking a stone he had by him, broke the chest open and
behold, therein lay a young lady as she were the sun's shining light
with brow flower-white, face moonbright, cheeks of rose-hue exquisite
and speech sweeter than sugar-bite, and in dress worth a thousand
dinars and more bedight. Seeing this his wits flew from his head for
joy and he said, "By Allah, thou art of the fair!" She asked him, "What
art thou, O fellow?" and he answered, "O my lady, I am Khalif the
Fisherman." Quoth she, "Who brought me hither?"; and quoth he, "I
bought thee, and thou art my slave-girl." Thereupon said she, "I see on
thee a robe of the raiment of the Caliph." So he told her all that had
betided him, from first to last, and how he had bought the chest;
wherefore she knew that the Lady Zubaydah had played her false; and she
ceased not talking with him till the morning, when she said to him, "O
Khalif, seek me from some one inkcase and reed-pen and paper and bring
them to me." So he found with one of the neighbours what she sought and
brought it to her, whereupon she wrote a letter and folded it and gave
it to him, saying, "O Khalif, take this paper and carry it to the
jewel-market, where do thou enquire for the shop of Abu al-Hasan the
jeweller and give it to him." Answered the Fisherman, "O my lady, this
name is difficult to me; I cannot remember it." And she rejoined, "Then
ask for the shop of Ibn al-'Ukáb."[FN#291] Quoth he, "O my lady, what
is an 'Ukab?"; and quoth she, "'Tis a bird which folk carry on fist
with eyes hooded." And he exclaimed, "O my lady, I know it." Then he
went forth from her and fared on, repeating the name, lest it fade from
his memory; but, by the time he reached the jewel-market, he had
forgotten it. So he accosted one of the merchants and said to him, "Is
there any here named after a bird?" Replied the merchant, "Yes, thou
meanest Ibn al-Ukab." Khalif cried, "That's the man I want," and making
his way to him, gave him the letter, which when he read and knew the
purport thereof, he fell to kissing it and laying it on his head; for
it is said that Abu al-Hasan was the agent of the Lady Kut al-Kulub and
her intendant over all her property in lands and houses. Now she had
written to him, saying, "From Her Highness the Lady Kut al-Kulub to Sir
Abu al-Hasan the jeweller. The instant this letter reacheth thee, set
apart for us a saloon completely equipped with furniture and vessels
and negro-slaves and slave-girls and what not else is needful for our
residence and seemly, and take the bearer of the missive and carry him
to the bath. Then clothe him in costly apparel and do with him thus and
thus." So he said "Hearing and obeying," and locking up his shop, took
the Fisherman and bore him to the bath, where he committed him to one
of the bathmen, that he might serve him, according to custom. Then he
went forth to carry out the Lady Kut al-Kulub's orders. As for Khalif,
he concluded, of his lack of wit and stupidity, that the bath was a
prison and said to the bathman, "What crime have I committed that ye
should lay me in limbo?" They laughed at him and made him sit on the
side of the tank, whilst the bathman took hold of his legs, that he
might shampoo them. Khalif thought he meant to wrestle with him and
said to himself, "This is a wrestling-place[FN#292] and I knew naught
of it." Then he arose and seizing the bathman's legs, lifted him up and
threw him on the ground and broke his ribs. The man cried out for help,
whereupon the other bathmen came in a crowd and fell upon Khalif and
overcoming him by dint of numbers, delivered their comrade from his
clutches and tunded him till he came to himself. Then they knew that
the Fisherman was a simpleton and served him till Abu al-Hasan came
back with a dress of rich stuff and clad him therein; after which he
brought him a handsome she-mule, ready saddled, and taking him by the
hand, carried him forth of the bath and said to him, "Mount." Quoth he,
"How shall I mount? I fear lest she throw me and break my ribs into my
belly." Nor would he back the mule, save after much travail and
trouble, and they stinted not faring on, till they came to the place
which Abu al-Hasan had set apart for the Lady Kut al-Kulub. Thereupon
Khalif entered and found her sitting, with slaves and eunuchs about her
and the porter at the door, staff in hand, who when he saw the
Fisherman sprang up and kissing his hand, went before him, till he
brought him within the saloon. Here the Fisherman saw what amazed his
wit, and his eye was dazzled by that which he beheld of riches past
count and slaves and servants, who kissed his hand and said, "May the
bath be a blessing to thee!"[FN#293] When he entered the saloon and
drew near unto Kut al-Kulub, she sprang up to him and taking him by the
hand, seated him on a high-mattrassed divan. Then she brought him a
vase of sherbet of sugar, mingled with rosewater and willow-water, and
he took it and drank it off and left not a single drop. Moreover, he
ran his finger round the inside of the vessel[FN#294] and would have
licked it, but she forbade him, saying, "That is foul." Quoth he,
"Silence; this is naught but good honey;" and she laughed at him and
set before him a tray of meats, whereof he ate his sufficiency. Then
they brought an ewer and basin of gold, and he washed his right hand
and abode in the gladdest of life and the most honourable. Now hear
what befel the Commander of the Faithful. When he came back from his
journey and found not Kut al-Kulub, he questioned the Lady Zubaydah of
her and she said, "She is verily dead, may thy head live, O Prince of
True Believers!" But she had bidden dig a grave amiddlemost the Palace
and had built over it a mock tomb, for her knowledge of the love the
Caliph bore to Kut al-Kulub: so she said to him, "O Commander of the
Faithful, I made her a tomb amiddlemost the Palace and buried her
there." Then she donned black,[FN#295] a mere sham and pure pretence;
and feigned mourning a great while. Now Kut al-Kulub knew that the
Caliph was come back from his hunting excursion; so she turned to
Khalif and said to him, "Arise; hie thee to the bath and come back." So
he rose and went to the Hammam-bath, and when he returned, she clad him
in a dress worth a thousand dinars and taught him manners and
respectful bearing to superiors. Then said she to him, "Go hence to the
Caliph and say to him, 'O Commander of the Faithful, 'tis my desire
that this night thou deign be my guest.'" So Khalif arose and mounting
his she-mule, rode, with pages and black slaves before him, till he
came to the Palace of the Caliphate. Quoth the wise, "Dress up a stick
and 'twill look chique."[FN#296] And indeed his comeliness was manifest
and his goodliness and the folk marvelled at this. Presently, the Chief
Eunuch saw him, the same who had given him the hundred dinars that had
been the cause of his good fortune; so he went in to the Caliph and
said to him, "O Commander of the Faithful, Khalif the Fisherman is
become a King, and on him is a robe of honour worth a thousand dinars."
The Prince of True Believers bade admit him; so he entered and said,
"Peace be with thee, O Commander of the Faithful and Vice-regent of the
Lord of the three Worlds and Defender of the folk of the Faith! Allah
Almighty prolong thy days and honour thy dominion and exalt thy degree
to the highmost height!" The Caliph looked at him and marvelled at him
and how fortune had come to him at unawares; then he said to him, "O
Khalif, whence hadst thou that robe which is upon thee?" He replied, "O
Commander of the Faithful, it cometh from my house." Quoth the Caliph,
"Hast thou then a house?"; and quoth Khalif, "Yea, verily! and thou, O
Commander of the Faithful, art my guest this day." Al-Rashid said, "I
alone, O Khalif, or I and those who are with me?"; and he replied,
"Thou and whom thou wilt." So Ja'afar turned to him and said, "We will
be thy guests this night;" whereupon he kissed ground again and
withdrawing, mounted his mule and rode off, attended by his servants
and suite of Mamelukes leaving the Caliph marvelling at this and saying
to Ja'afar, "Sawest thou Khalif, with his mule and dress, his white
slaves and his dignity? But yesterday I knew him for a buffoon and a
jester." And they marvelled at this much. Then they mounted and rode,
till they drew near Khalif's house, when the Fisherman alighted and,
taking a bundle from one of his attendants, opened it and pulled out
therefrom a piece of tabby silk[FN#297] and spread it under the hoofs
of the Caliph's she-mule; then he brought out a piece of
velvet-Kimcob[FN#298] and a third of fine satin and did with them
likewise; and thus he spread well nigh twenty pieces of rich stuffs,
till Al-Rashid and his suite had reached the house; when he came
forward and said, "Bismillah,[FN#299] O Commander of the Faithful!"
Quoth Al-Rashid to Ja'afar, "I wonder to whom this house may belong,"
and quoth he, "It belongeth to a man hight Ibn al-Ukab, Syndic of the
jewellers." So the Caliph dismounted and entering, with his courtiers,
saw a high-builded saloon, spacious and boon, with couches on daďs and
carpets and divans strown in place. So he went up to the couch that was
set for himself on four legs of ivory, plated with glittering gold and
covered with seven carpets. This pleased him and behold, up came
Khalif, with eunuchs and little white slaves, bearing all manner
sherbets, compounded with sugar and lemon and perfumed with rose and
willow-water and the purest musk. The Fisherman advanced and drank and
gave the Caliph to drink, and the cup-bearers came forward and served
the rest of the company with the sherbets. Then Khalif brought a table
spread with meats of various colours and geese and fowls and other
birds, saying, "In the name of Allah!" So they ate their fill; after
which he bade remove the tables and kissing the ground three times
before the Caliph craved his royal leave to bring wine and
music.[FN#300] He granted him permission for this and turning to
Ja'afar, said to him, "As my head liveth, the house and that which is
therein is Khalif's; for that he is ruler over it and I am in
admiration at him, whence there came to him this passing prosperity and
exceeding felicity! However, this is no great matter to Him who saith
to a thing, 'Be!' and it becometh; what I most wonder at is his
understanding, how it hath increased, and whence he hath gotten this
loftiness and this lordliness; but, when Allah willeth weal unto a man,
He amendeth his intelligence before bringing him to worldly affluence."
As they were talking, behold, up came Khalif, followed by cup-bearer
lads like moons, belted with zones of gold, who spread a cloth of
siglaton[FN#301] and set thereon flagons of chinaware and tall flasks
of glass and cups of crystal and bottles and hanaps[FN#302] of all
colours; and those flagons they filled with pure clear and old wine,
whose scent was as the fragrance of virgin musk and it was even as
saith the poet,

"Ply me and also my mate be plied * With pure wine prest in the
     olden tide.[FN#303]
Daughter of nobles[FN#304] they lead her forth[FN#305] * In
     raiment of goblets beautified.
They belt her round with the brightest gems, * And pearls and
     unions, the Ocean's pride;
So I by these signs and signets know * Wherefore the Wine is
     entitled 'Bride.'[FN#306]"

And round about these vessels were confections and flowers, such as may
not be surpassed. When Al-Rashid saw this from Khalif, he inclined to
him and smiled upon him and invested him with an office; so Khalif
wished him continuance of honour and endurance of days and said, "Will
the Commander of the Faithful deign give me leave to bring him a
singer, a lute-player her like was never heard among mortals ever?"
Quoth the Caliph, "Thou art permitted!" So he kissed ground before him
and going to a secret closet, called Kut al-Kulub, who came after she
had disguised and falsed and veiled herself, tripping in her robes and
trinkets; and she kissed ground before the Commander of the Faithful.
Then she sat down and tuning the lute, touched its strings and played
upon it, till all present were like to faint for excess of delight;
after which she improvised these verses,

"Would Heaven I wot, will ever Time bring our beloveds back
     again? * And, ah! will Union and its bliss to bless two
     lovers deign?
Will Time assure to us united days and joinčd joy, * While from
     the storms and stowres of life in safety we remain?
Then O Who bade this pleasure be, our parting past and gone, *
     And made one house our meeting-stead throughout the Nights
By him, draw near me, love, and closest cling to side of me *
     Else were my wearied wasted life, a vanity, a bane."

When the Caliph heard this, he could not master himself, but rent his
raiment and fell down a-swoon; whereupon all who were present hastened
to doff their dress and throw it over him, whilst Kut al-Kulub signed
to Khalif and said to him, "Hie to yonder chest and bring us what is
therein;" for she had made ready therein a suit of the Caliph's wear
against the like of such hour as this. So Khalif brought it to her and
she threw it over the Commander of the Faithful, who came to himself
and knowing her for Kut al- Kulub, said, "Is this the Day of
Resurrection and hath Allah quickened those who are in the tombs; or am
I asleep and is this an imbroglio of dreams?" Quoth Kut al-Kulub, "We
are on wake, not on sleep, and I am alive, nor have I drained the cup
of death." Then she told him all that had befallen her, and indeed,
since he lost her, life had not been light to him nor had sleep been
sweet, and he abode now wondering, then weeping and anon afire for
longing. When she had made an end of her story, the Caliph rose and
took her by the hand, intending for her palace, after he had kissed her
inner lips, and had strained her to his bosom; whereupon Khalif rose
and said, "By Allah, O Commander of the Faithful! Thou hast already
wronged me once, and now thou wrongest me again." Quoth Al-Rashid,
"Indeed thou speakest sooth, O Khalif," and bade the Wazir Ja'afar give
him what should satisfy him. So he straightway gifted him with all for
which he wished and assigned him a village, the yearly revenues whereof
were twenty thousand dinars. Moreover Kut al-Kulub generously presented
him the house and all that was therein of furniture and hangings and
white slaves and slave-girls and eunuchs great and small. So Khalif
became possessed of this passing affluence and exceeding wealth and
took him a wife, and prosperity taught him gravity and dignity, and
good fortune overwhelmed him. The Caliph enrolled him among his
equerries and he abode in all solace of life and its delights till he
deceased and was admitted to the mercy of Allah. Furthermore they
relate a tale anent[FN#307]


There was once in days of yore and in ages and times long gone before a
man and a merchant Masrúr hight, who was of the comeliest of the folk
of his tide, a wight of wealth galore and in easiest case; but he loved
to take his pleasure in vergiers and flower-gardens and to divert
himself with the love of the fair. Now it fortuned one night, as he lay
asleep, he dreamt that he was in a garth of the loveliest, wherein were
four birds, and amongst them a dove, white as polished silver. That
dove pleased him and for her grew up in his heart an exceeding love.
Presently, he beheld a great bird swoop down on him and snatch the dove
from his hand, and this was grievous to him. After which he awoke and
not finding the bird strave with his yearnings till morning, when he
said in himself, "There is no help but that I go to-day to some one who
will expound to me this vision."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Forty-sixth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
merchant awoke, he strave with his yearnings till morning when he said
to himself, "There is no help but that I go this day to some one who
will expound to me this vision." So he went forth and walked right and
left, till he was far from his dwelling-place, but found none to
interpret the dream to him. Then he would have returned, but on his way
behold, the fancy took him to turn aside to the house of a certain
trader, a man of the wealthiest, and when he drew near to it, suddenly
he heard from within a plaintive voice from a sorrowful heart reciting
these couplets,

"The breeze o' Morn blows uswards from her trace * Fragrant, and
     heals the love-sick lover's case.
I stand like captive on the mounds and ask * While tears make
     answer for the ruined place:
Quoth I, 'By Allah, Breeze o' Morning, say * Shall Time and
     Fortune aye this stead regrace?
Shall I enjoy a fawn whose form bewitched * And langourous
     eyelids wasted frame and face?'"

When Masrur heard this, he looked in through the doorway and saw a
garden of the goodliest of gardens, and at its farther end a curtain of
red brocade, purfled with pearls and gems, behind which sat four
damsels, and amongst them a young lady over four feet and under five in
height, as she were the rondure of the lune and the full moon shining
boon: she had eyes Kohl'd with nature's dye and joined eyebrows, a
mouth as it were Solomon's seal and lips and teeth bright with pearls
and coral's light; and indeed she ravished all wits with her beauty and
loveliness and symmetry and perfect grace. When Masrur espied her, he
entered the porch and went on entering till he came to the curtain:
whereupon she raised her head and glanced at him. So he saluted her and
she returned his salam with sweetest speech; and, when he considered
her more straitly, his reason was dazed and his heart amazed. Then he
looked at the garden and saw that it was full of jessamine and gilly
flowers and violets and roses and orange blossoms and all manner
sweet-scented blooms and herbs. Every tree was girt about with fruits
and there coursed down water from four daďses, which faced one another
and occupied the four corners of the garden. He looked at the first
Líwán and found written around it with vermilion these two couplets,

"Ho thou the House! Grief never home in thee; * Nor Time work
     treason on thine owner's head:
All good betide the House which every guest * Harbours, when sore
     distrest for way and stead!"

Then he looked at the second daďs and found written thereon in red gold
these couplets,

"Robe thee, O House, in richest raiment Time, * Long as the
     birdies on the branchlets chime!
And sweetest perfumes breathe within thy walls * And lover meet
     beloved in bliss sublime.
And dwell thy dwellers all in joy and pride * Long as the
     wandering stars Heaven-hill shall climb."

Then he looked at the third, whereon he found written in ultramarine
these two couplets,

"Ever thy pomp and pride, O House! display * While starkeneth
     Night and shineth sheeny Day!
Boon Fortune bless all entering thy walls, * And whomso dwell in
     thee, for ever and aye!"

Then he looked at the fourth and saw painted in yellow characters this

"This garden and this lake in truth * Are fair sitting-steads, by
     the Lord of Ruth!"

Moreover, in that garden were birds of all breeds, ring-dove and cushat
and nightingale and culver, each singing his several song, and amongst
them the lady, swaying gracefully to and fro in her beauty and grace
and symmetry and loveliness and ravishing all who saw her. Presently
quoth she to Masrur, "Hola man! what bringeth thee into a house other
than thy house and wherefore comest thou in unto women other than thy
women, without leave of their owner?" Quoth he, "O my lady, I saw this
garden, and the goodliness of its greenery pleased me and the fragrance
of its flowers and the carolling of its birds; so I entered, thinking
to gaze on it awhile and wend my way." Said she, "With love and
gladness!"; and Masrur was amazed at the sweetness of her speech and
the coquetry of her glances and the straightness of her shape, and
transported by her beauty and seemlihead and the pleasantness of the
garden and the birds. So in the disorder of his spirits he recited
these couplets,

"As a crescent-moon in the garth her form * 'Mid Basil and
     jasmine and Rose I scan;
And Violet faced by the Myrtle-spray * And Nu'umán's bloom and
By her perfume the Zephyrs perfumčd breathe * And with scented
     sighings the branches fan.
O Garden, thou perfect of beauty art * All charms comprising in
     perfect plan;
And melodious birdies sing madrigals * And the Full Moon[FN#309]
     shineth in branchshade wan;
Its ring-dove, its culver, its mocking-bird * And its Philomel
     sing my soul t' unman;
And the longing of love all my wits confuseth * For her charms,
     as the man whom his wine bemuseth."

Now when Zayn al-Mawásif heard his verse, she glanced at him with eyes
which bequeathed a thousand sighs and utterly ravished his wisdom and
wits and replied to him in these lines,

"Hope not of our favours to make thy prey * And of what thou
     wishest thy greed allay:
And cease thy longing; thou canst not win * The love of the Fair
     thou'rt fain t' essay,
My glances to lovers are baleful and naught * I reek of thy
     speech: I have said my say!"

"Ho, thou! Begone about thy business, for we are none of the
woman-tribe who are neither thine nor another's.[FN#310]" And he
answered, "O my lady, I said nothing ill." Quoth she, "Thou soughtest
to divert thyself[FN#311] and thou hast had thy diversion; so wend thy
ways." Quoth he, "O my lady, belike thou wilt give me a draught of
water, for I am athirst." Whereupon she cried, "How canst thou drink of
a Jew's water, and thou a Nazarene?" But he replied, "O my lady, your
water is not forbidden to us nor ours unlawful to you, for we are all
as one creation." So she said to her slave-girl, "Give him to drink;"
and she did as she was bidden. Then she called for the table of food,
and there came four damsels, high-bosomed maids, bearing four trays of
meats and four gilt flagons full of strong old-wine, as it were the
tears of a slave of love for clearness, and a table around whose edge
were graven these couplets,

"For eaters a table they brought and set * In the banquet-hall
     and 'twas dight with gold:
Like th' Eternal Garden that gathers all * Man wants of meat and
     wines manifold."

And when the high-breasted maids had set all this before him, quoth
she, "Thou soughtest to drink of our drink; so up and at our meat and
drink!" He could hardly credit what his ears had heard and sat down at
the table forthright; whereupon she bade her nurse[FN#312] give him a
cup, that he might drink. Now her slave-girls were called, one Hubúb,
another Khutúb and the third Sukúb,[FN#313] and she who gave him the
cup was Hubub. So he took the cup and looking at the outside there saw
written these couplets,

"Drain not the bowl but with lovely wight * Who loves thee and
     wine makes brighter bright.
And 'ware her Scorpions[FN#314] that o'er thee creep * And guard
     thy tongue lest thou vex her sprite."

Then the cup went round and when he emptied it he looked inside and saw

"And 'ware her Scorpions when pressing them, * And hide her
     secrets from foes' despight."

Whereupon Masrur laughed her-wards and she asked him, "What causeth
thee to laugh?" "For the fulness of my joy," quoth he. Presently, the
breeze blew on her and the scarf[FN#315] fell from her head and
discovered a fillet[FN#316] of glittering gold, set with pearls and
gems and jacinths; and on her breast was a necklace of all manner
ring-jewels and precious stones, to the centre of which hung a sparrow
of red gold, with feet of red coral and bill of white silver and body
full of Nadd-powder and pure ambergris and odoriferous musk. And upon
its back was engraved,

"The Nadd is my wine-scented powder, my bread; * And the bosom's
     my bed and the breasts my stead:
And my neck-nape complains of the weight of love, * Of my pain,
     of my pine, of my drearihead."

Then Masrur looked at the breast of her shift and behold, thereon lay
wroughten in red gold this verse,

"The fragrance of musk from the breasts of the fair * Zephyr
     borrows, to sweeten the morning air."

Masrur marvelled at this with exceeding wonder and was dazed by her
charms and amazement gat hold upon him. Then said Zayn al-Mawásif to
him, "Begone from us and go about thy business, lest the neighbours
hear of us and even us with the lewd." He replied, "By Allah, O my
lady, suffer my sight to enjoy the view of thy beauty and loveliness."
With this she was wroth with him and leaving him, walked in the garden,
and he looked at her shift-sleeve and saw upon it embroidered these

"The weaver-wight wrote with gold-ore bright * And her wrists on
     brocade rained a brighter light:
Her palms are adorned with a silvern sheen; * And favour her
     fingers the ivory's white:
For their tips are rounded like priceless pearl; * And her charms
     would enlighten the nightiest night."

And, as she paced the garth, Masrur gazed at her slippers and saw
written upon them these pleasant lines,

"The slippers that carry these fair young feet * Cause her form
     to bend in its gracious bloom:
When she paces and waves in the breeze she owns, * She shines
     fullest moon in the murkiest gloom."

She was followed by her women leaving Hubub with Masrur by the curtain,
upon whose edge were embroidered these couplets,

"Behind the veil a damsel sits with gracious beauty dight, *
     Praise to the Lord who decked her with these inner gifts of
Guards her the garden and the bird fain bears her company; *
     Gladden her wine-draughts and the bowl but makes her
Apple and Cassia-blossom show their envy of her cheeks; * And
     borrows Pearl resplendency from her resplendent light;
As though the sperm that gendered her were drop of
     marguerite[FN#317] * Happy who kisses her and spends in her
     embrace the night."

So Masrur entered into a long discourse with Hubub and presently said
to her, "O Hubub, hath thy mistress a husband or not?" She replied, "My
lady hath a husband; but he is actually abroad on a journey with
merchandise of his." Now whenas he heard that her husband was abroad on
a journey, his heart lusted after her and he said, "O Hubub, glorified
be He who created this damsel and fashioned her! How sweet is her
beauty and her loveliness and her symmetry and perfect grace! Verily,
into my heart is fallen sore travail for her. O Hubub, so do that I
come to enjoy her, and thou shalt have of me what thou wilt of wealth
and what not else." Replied Hubub, "O Nazarene, if she heard thee speak
thus, she would slay thee, or else she would kill herself, for she is
the daughter of a Zealot[FN#318] of the Jews nor is there her like
amongst them: she hath no need of money and she keepeth herself ever
cloistered, discovering not her case to any." Quoth Masrur, "O Hubub,
an thou wilt but bring me to enjoy her, I will be to thee slave and
foot page and will serve thee all my life and give thee whatsoever thou
seekest of me." But quoth she, "O Masrur, in very sooth this woman hath
no lust for money nor yet for men, because my lady Zayn al-Mawasif is
of the cloistered, going not forth her house-door in fear lest folk see
her; and but that she bore with thee by reason of thy strangerhood, she
had not permitted thee to pass her threshold; no, not though thou wert
her brother." He replied, "O Hubub, be thou our go-between and thou
shalt have of me an hundred gold dinars and a dress worth as much more,
for that the love of her hath gotten hold of my heart." Hearing this
she said, "O man, let me go about with her in talk and I will return
thee and answer and acquaint thee with what she saith. Indeed, she
loveth those who berhyme her and she affecteth those who set forth her
charms and beauty and loveliness in verse, and we may not prevail over
her save by wiles and soft speech and beguilement." Thereupon Hubub
rose and going up to her mistress, accosted her with privy talk of this
and that and presently said to her, "O my lady, look at yonder young
man, the Nazarene; how sweet is his speech and how shapely his shape!"
When Zayn al-Mawasif heard this, she turned to her and said, "An thou
like his comeliness love him thyself. Art thou not ashamed to address
the like of me with these words? Go, bid him begone about his business;
or I will make it the worse for him." So Hubub returned to Masrur, but
acquainted him not with that which her mistress had said. Then the lady
bade her hie to the door and look if she saw any of the folk, lest foul
befal them. So she went and returning, said, "O my lady, without are
folk in plenty and we cannot let him go forth this night." Quoth Zayn
al-Mawasif, "I am in dole because of a dream I have seen and am fearful
therefrom." And Masrur said, "What sawest thou? Allah never trouble thy
heart!" She replied, "I was asleep in the middle of the night, when
suddenly an eagle swooped down upon me from the highest of the clouds
and would have carried me off from behind the curtain, wherefore I was
affrighted at him. Then I awoke from sleep and bade my women bring me
meat and drink, so haply, when I had drunken, the dolour of the dream
would cease from me." Hearing this, Masrur smiled and told her his
dream from first to last and how he had caught the dove, whereat she
marvelled with exceeding marvel. Then he went on to talk with her at
great length and said, "I am now certified of the truth of my dream,
for thou art the dove and I the eagle, and there is no hope but that
this must be, for, the moment I set eyes on thee, thou tookest
possession of my vitals and settest my heart a-fire for love of thee!"
Thereupon Zayn al-Mawasif became wroth with exceeding wrath and said to
him, "I take refuge with Allah from this! Allah upon thee, begone about
thy business ere the neighbours espy thee and there betide us sore
reproach," adding, "Harkye, man! Let not thy soul covet that it shall
not obtain. Thou weariest thyself in vain; for I am a merchant's wife
and a merchant's daughter and thou art a druggist; and when sawest thou
a druggist and a merchant's daughter conjoined by such sentiment?" He
replied, "O my lady, never lacked love-liesse between folk[FN#319]; so
cut thou not off from me hope of this and whatsoever thou seekest of me
of money and raiment and ornaments and what not else, I will give
thee." Then he abode with her in discourse and mutual blaming whilst
she still redoubled in anger, till it was black night, when he said to
her, "O my lady, take this gold piece and fetch me a little wine, for I
am athirst and heavy hearted." So she said to the slave-girl Hubub,
"Fetch him wine and take naught from him, for we have no need of his
dinar." So she went whilst Masrur held his peace and bespake not the
lady, who suddenly improvised these lines,

"Leave this thy design and depart, O man! * Nor tread paths where
     lewdness and crime trepan!
Love is a net shall enmesh thy sprite, * Make thee rise a-morning
     sad, weary and wan:
For our spy thou shalt eke be the cause of talk; * And for thee
     shall blame me my tribe and clan:
Yet scant I marvel thou lovest a Fair:— * Gazelles hunting lions
     we aye shall scan!"

And he answered her with these,

"Joy of boughs, bright branch of Myrobalan! * Have ruth on the
     heart all thy charms unman:
Death-cup to the dregs thou garrest me drain * And don weed of
     Love with its bane and ban:
How can soothe I a heart which for stress of pine * Burns with
     living coals which my longings fan?"

Hearing these lines she exclaimed, "Away from me! Quoth the saw 'Whoso
looseth his sight wearieth his sprite.' By Allah, I am tired of
discourse with thee and chiding, and indeed thy soul coveteth that
shall never become thine; nay, though thou gave me my weight in gold,
thou shouldst not get thy wicked will of me; for, I know naught of the
things of the world, save pleasant life, by the boon of Allah
Almighty!" He answered, "O my lady Zayn al-Mawasif, ask of me what thou
wilt of the goods of the world." Quoth she, "What shall I ask of thee?
For sure thou wilt fare forth and prate of me in the highway and I
shall become a laughing-stock among the folk and they will make a
byword of me in verse, me who am the daughter of the chief of the
merchants and whose father is known of the notables of the tribe. I
have no need of money or raiment and such love will not be hidden from
the people and I shall be brought to shame, I and my kith and kin."
With this Masrur was confounded and could make her no answer; but
presently she said, "Indeed, the master-thief, if he steal, stealeth
not but what is worth his neck, and every woman who doth lewdness with
other than her husband is styled a thief; so, if it must be thus and no
help[FN#320], thou shalt give me whatsoever my heart desireth of money
and raiment and ornaments and what not." Quoth he, "An thou sought of
me the world and all its regions contain from its East to its West,
'twere but a little thing, compared with thy favour;" and quoth she, "I
will have of thee three suits, each worth a thousand Egyptian dinars,
and adorned with gold and fairly purfled with pearls and jewels and
jacinths, the best of their kind. Furthermore I require that thou swear
to me thou wilt keep my secret nor discover it to any and that thou
wilt company with none but me; and I in turn will swear to thee a true
oath that I will never false thee in love." So he sware to her the oath
she required and she sware to him, and they agreed upon this; after
which she said to her nurse Hubub, "To-morrow go thou with Masrur to
his lodging and seek somewhat of musk and ambergris and Nadd and
rose-water and see what he hath. If he be a man of condition, we will
take him into favour; but an he be otherwise we will leave him." Then
said she to him, "O Masrur, I desire somewhat of musk and ambergris and
aloes-wood and Nadd; so do thou send it me by Hubub;" and he answered,
"With love and gladness; my shop is at thy disposal!" Then the wine
went round between them and their séance was sweet: but Masrur's heart
was troubled for the passion and pining which possessed him; and when
Zayn al-Mawasif saw him in this plight, she said to her slave-girl
Sukub, "Arouse Masrur from his stupor; mayhap he will recover."
Answered Sukub, "Hearkening and obedience," and sang these couplets,

"Bring gold and gear an a lover thou, * And hymn thy love so
     success shalt row;
Joy the smiling fawn with the black-edged eyne * And the bending
     lines of the Cassia-bough:
On her look, and a marvel therein shalt sight, * And pour out thy
     life ere thy life-term show:
Love's affect be this, an thou weet the same; * But, an gold
     deceive thee, leave gold and go!"

Hereupon Masrur understood her and said, "I hear and apprehend. Never
was grief but after came relief, and after affliction dealing He will
order the healing." Then Zayn al-Mawasif recited these couplets,

"From Love-stupor awake, O Masrur, 'twere best; * For this day I
     dread my love rend thy breast;
And to-morrow I fear me folks' marvel-tale * Shall make us a
     byword from East to West:
Leave love of my like or thou'lt gain thee blame; * Why turn thee
     us-wards? Such love's unblest!
For one strange of lineage whose kin repel * Thou shalt wake
     ill-famed, of friends dispossest:
I'm a Zealot's child and affright the folk: * Would my life were
     ended and I at rest!"

Then Masrur answered her improvisation and began to say these lines,

"To grief leave a heart that to love ne'er ceased; * Nor blame,
     for your blame ever love increased:
You misrule my vitals in tyrant-guise; * Morn and Eve I wend not
     or West or East;
Love's law forbids me to do me die; * They say Love's victim is
     ne'er released:
Well-away! Could I find in Love's Court a judge * I'd 'plain and
     win to my rights at least."

They ceased not from mutual chiding till morning morrowed, when Zayn
al-Mawasif said, "O Masrur 'tis time for thee to depart, lest one of
the folk see thee and foul befal us twain." So he arose and accompanied
by nurse Hubub fared on, till they came to his lodging, where he talked
with her and said to her, "All thou seekest of me is ready for thee, so
but thou wilt bring me to enjoy her." Hubub replied, "Hearten thy
heart;" whereupon he rose and gave her an hundred dinars, saying "O
Hubub, I have by me a dress worth an hundred gold pieces." Answered
she, "O Masrur, make haste with the trinkets and other things promised
her, ere she change her mind, for we may not take her, save with wile
and guile, and she loveth the saying of verse." Quoth he, "Hearing and
obeying," and bringing her the musk and ambergris and lign-aloes and
rose-water, returned with her to Zayn al-Mawasif and saluted her. She
returned his salam with the sweetest speech, and he was dazed by her
beauty and improvised these lines,

"O thou sheeniest Sun who in night dost shine! * O who stole my
     soul with those large black eyne!
O slim-shaped fair with the graceful neck! * O who shamest Rose
     wi' those cheeks o' thine!
Blind not our sight wi' thy fell disdain, * Disdain, that shall
     load us with pain and pine;
Passion homes in our inmost, nor will be quenched * The fire of
     yearning in vitals li'en:
Your love has housčd in heart of me * And of issue but you see I
     ne'er a sign:
Then haply you'll pity this hapless wight * Thy sad lover and
     then—O the Morn divine!"

When Zayn al-Mawasif heard his verses, she cast at him a glance of
eyes, that bequeathed him a thousand regrets and sighs and his wits and
soul were ravished in such wise, and answered him with these

"Think not from her, of whom thou art enamoured aye * To win
     delight; so put desire from thee away.
Leave that thou hop'st, for 'gainst her rigours whom thou lov'st
     * Among the fair, in vain is all thou canst essay.
My looks to lovers bring discomfiture and woe: Indeed, * I make
     no count of that which thou dost say."

When Masrur heard this, he hardened his heart and took patience
concealing his case and saying in himself, "There is nothing for it
against calamity save long-suffering;" and after this fashion they
abode till nightfall when Zayn al-Mawasif called for food and they set
before her a tray wherein were all manner of dishes, quails and pigeons
and mutton and so forth, whereof they ate their sufficiency. Then she
bade take away the tables and they did so and fetched the lavatory
gear; and they washed their hands, after which she ordered her women to
bring the candlesticks, and they set on candelabra and candles therein
of camphorated wax. Thereupon quoth Zayn al-Mawasif, "By Allah, my
breast is straitened this night and I am afevered;" and quoth Masrur,
"Allah broaden thy breast and banish thy bane!" Then she said, "O
Masrur, I am used to play at chess: say me, knowest aught of the game?"
He replied, "Yes; I am skilled therein;" whereupon she commanded her
handmaid Hubub fetch her the chessboard. So she went away and presently
returning with the board, set it before her, and behold, it was of
ivory-marquetried ebony with squares marked in glittering gold, and its
pieces of pearl and ruby.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Forty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Zayn
al-Mawasif bade the chessboard be brought, they set it between her
hands; and Masrur was amazed at this, when she turned to him and said,
"Wilt have red or white?" He replied, "O Princess of the fair and
adornment of morning air, do thou take the red for they formous are and
fitter for the like of thee to bear and leave the white to my care."
Answered she, "So be it;" and, taking the red pieces, ranged them
opposite the white, then put out her hand to a piece purposing the
first pass into the battle-plain. Masrur considered her fingers, which
were white as paste, and was confounded at their beauty and shapely
shape; whereupon she turned to him and said, "O Masrur, be not bedazed,
but take patience and calm thyself." He rejoined, "O thou whose beauty
shameth the moon, how shall a lover look on thee and have
patience-boon?" And while this was doing she cried,
"Checkmate[FN#322]!" and beat him; wherefore she knew that he was
Jinn-mad for love of her and said to him, "O Masrur, I will not play
with thee save for a set stake." He replied, "I hear and obey," and she
rejoined, "Swear to me and I will swear to thee that neither of us will
cheat[FN#323] the adversary." So both sware this and she said, "O
Masrur, an I beat thee, I will have ten dinars of thee, but an thou
beat me, I will give thee a mere nothing." He expected to win, so he
said, "O my lady, be not false to thine oath, for I see thou art an
overmatch for me at this game!" "Agreed," said she and they ranged
their men and fell again to playing and pushing on their pawns and
catching them up with the queens and aligning and matching them with
the castles and solacing them with the onslaught of the knights. Now
the "Adornment of Qualities" wore on head a kerchief of blue brocade so
she loosed it off and tucking up her sleeve, showed a wrist like a
shaft of light and passed her palm over the red pieces, saying to him,
"Look to thyself." But he was dazzled at her beauty, and the sight of
her graces bereft him of reason, so that he became dazed and amazed and
put out his hand to the white men, but it alit upon the red. Said she,
"O Masrur, where be thy wits? The red are mine and the white thine;"
and he replied, "Whoso looketh at thee perforce loseth all his senses."
Then, seeing how it was with him, she took the white from him and gave
him the red, and they played and she beat him. He ceased not to play
with her and she to beat him, whilst he paid her each time ten dinars,
till, knowing him to be distraught for love of her, she said, "O
Masrur, thou wilt never win to thy wish, except thou beat me, for such
was our understanding; and henceforth, I will not play with thee save
for a stake of an hundred dinars a game." "With love and gladness,"
answered he and she went on playing and ever beating him and he paid
her an hundred dinars each time; and on this wise they abode till the
morning, without his having won a single game, when he suddenly sprang
to his feet. Quoth she, "What wilt thou do, O Masrur?"; and quoth he,
"I mean to go to my lodging and fetch somewhat of money: it may be I
shall come to my desire." "Do whatso seemeth good to thee," said she;
so he went home and taking all the money he had, returned to her
improvising these two couplets,

"In dream I saw a bird o'er speed (meseem'd), * Love's garden
     decked with blooms that smiled and gleamed:
But I shall ken, when won my wish and will * Of thee, the
     truthful sense of what I dreamed."

Now when Masrur returned to her with all his monies they fell a-playing
again; but she still beat him and he could not beat her once; and in
such case they abode three days, till she had gotten of him the whole
of his coin; whereupon said she, "O Masrur, what wilt thou do now?";
and he replied, "I will stake thee a druggist's shop." "What is its
worth?" asked she; and he answered, "Five hundred dinars." So they
played five bouts and she won the shop of him. Then he betted his
slave-girls, lands, houses, gardens, and she won the whole of them,
till she had gotten of him all he had; whereupon she turned to him and
said, "Hast thou aught left to lay down?" Cried he, "By Him who made me
fall into the snare of thy love, I have neither money to touch nor
aught else left, little or much!" She rejoined, "O Masrur, the end of
whatso began in content shall not drive man to repent; wherefore, an
thou regret aught, take back thy good and begone from us about thy
business and I will hold thee quit towards me." Masrur rejoined, "By
Him who decreed these things to us, though thou sought to take my life
'twere a wee thing to stake for thine approof, because I love none but
thee!" Then said she, "O Masrur, fare forthright and fetch the Kazi and
the witnesses and make over to me by deed all thy lands and
possessions." "Willingly," replied he and, going forth without stay or
delay, brought the Kazi and the witnesses and set them before her. When
the judge saw her, his wits fled and his mind was amazed and his reason
was dazed for the beauty of her fingers, and he said to her, "O my
lady, I will not write out the writ of conveyance, save upon condition
that thou buy the lands and mansions and slave-girls and that they all
pass under thy control and into thy possession." She rejoined, "We're
agreed upon that. Write me a deed, whereby all Masrur's houses and
lands and slave-girls and whatso his right hand possesseth shall pass
to Zayn al-Mawasif and become her property at such a price." So the
Kazi wrote out the writ and the witnesses set hands thereto; whereupon
she took it.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Forty-eighth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Zayn
al-Mawasif took from the Kazi the deed which made over her lover's
property to her, she said to him, "O Masrur, now gang thy gait." But
her slave-girl Hubub turned to him and said, "Recite us some verses."
So he improvised upon that game of chess these couplets,

"Of Time and what befel me I complain, * Mourning my loss by
     chess and eyes of bane.
For love of gentlest, softest-sided fair * Whose like is not of
     maids or mortal strain:
The shafts of glances from those eyne who shot * And led her
     conquering host to battle-plain
Red men and white men and the clashing Knights * And, crying
     'Look to thee!' came forth amain:
And, when down charging, finger-tips she showed * That gloomed
     like blackest night for sable stain,
The Whites I could not rescue, could not save * While ecstasy
     made tear-floods rail and rain:
The Pawns and Castles with their Queens fell low * And fled the
     Whites nor could the brunt sustain:
Yea, with her shaft of glance at me she shot * And soon that
     shaft had pierced my heart and brain:
She gave me choice between her hosts, and I * The Whites like
     moonlight first to choose was fain,
Saying, 'This argent folk best fitteth me * I love them, but the
     Red by thee be ta'en!'
She playčd me for free accepted stake * Yet amorous mercy I could
     ne'er obtain:
O fire of heart, O pine and woe of me, * Wooing a fair like moon
     mid starry train:
Burns not my heart O no! nor aught regrets * Of good or land, but
     ah! her eyes' disdain!
Amazed I'm grown and dazed for drearihead * And blame I Time who
     brought such pine and pain.
Quoth she, 'Why art thou so bedazed!' quoth I * 'Wine-drunken
     wight shall more of wine assain?'
That mortal stole my sense by silk-soft shape, * Which doth for
     heart-core hardest rock contain.
I nervčd self and cried, 'This day she's mine' * By bet, nor fear
     I prove she unhumŕne:
My heart ne'er ceased to seek possession, till * Beggared I found
     me for conditions twain:
Will youth you loveth shun the Love-dealt blow, * Tho' were he
     whelmed in Love's high-surging main?
So woke the slave sans e'en a coin to turn, * Thralled to repine
     for what he ne'er shall gain!"

Zayn al-Mawasif hearing these words marvelled at the eloquence of his
tongue and said to him, "O Masrur, leave this madness and return to thy
right reason and wend thy ways; for thou hast wasted all thy moveables
and immoveables at the chess-game, yet hast not won thy wish, nor hast
thou any resource or device whereby thou mayst attain to it." But he
turned to her and said, "O my lady, ask of me whatso thou wilt and thou
shalt have it; for I will bring it to thee and lay it at thy feet."
Answered she, "O Masrur, thou hast no money left." "O goal of all
hopes, if I have no money, the folk will help me." "Shall the giver
turn asker?" "I have friends and kinsfolk, and whatsoever I seek of
them, they will give me." "O Masrur, I will have of thee four pods of
musk and four vases of civet[FN#324] and four pounds of ambergris and
four thousand dinars and four hundred pieces of royal brocade, purfled
with gold. An thou bring me these things, O Masrur, I will grant thee
my favours." "This is a light matter to me, O thou that puttest the
moons to shame," replied he and went forth to fetch her what she
sought. She sent her maid Hubub after him, to see what worth he had
with the folk of whom he had spoken to her; but, as he walked along the
highways he turned and seeing her afar off, waited till she came up to
him and said to her, "Whither away, O Hubub?" So she said to him, "My
mistress sent me to follow for this and that," and he replied, "By
Allah, O Hubub, I have nothing to hand!" She asked, "Then why didst
thou promise her?"; and he answered, "How many a promise made is unkept
of its maker! Fine words in love-matters needs must be." When she heard
this from him, she said, "O Masrur, be of good cheer and eyes clear
for, by Allah, most assuredly I will be the means of thy coming to
enjoy her!" Then she left him nor ceased walking till she stood before
her mistress weeping with sore weeping, and said, "O my lady, indeed he
is a man of great consideration, and good repute among the folk." Quoth
Zayn al-Mawasif, "There is no device against the destiny of Almighty
Allah! Verily, this man found not in me a pitiful heart, for that I
despoiled him of his substance and he got of me neither affection nor
complaisance in granting him amorous joy; but, if I incline to his
inclination, I fear lest the thing be bruited abroad." Quoth Hubub, "O
my lady, verily, grievous upon us is his present plight and the loss of
his good and thou hast with thee none save thyself and thy slave-girl
Sukub; so which of us two would dare prate of thee, and we thy
handmaids?" With this, she bowed her head for a while ground-wards and
the damsels said to her, "O my lady, it is our rede that thou send
after him and show him grace and suffer him not ask of the sordid; for
how bitter is such begging!" So she accepted their counsel and calling
for inkcase and paper, wrote him these couplets,

"Joy is nigh, O Masrúr, so rejoice in true rede; * Whenas night
     shall fall thou shalt do kind-deed:
Crave not of the sordid a loan, fair youth, * Wine stole my wits
     but they now take heed:
All thy good I reft shall return to thee, * O Masrúr, and I'll
     add to them amorous meed;
For indeed th' art patient, and sweet of soul * When wronged by
     thy lover's tyrannic greed.
So haste to enjoy us and luck to thee! * Lest my folk come
     between us speed, love, all speed!
Hurry uswards thou, nor delay, and while * My mate is far, on
     Love's fruit come feed."

Then she folded the paper and gave it to Hubub the handmaid, who
carried it to Masrur and found him weeping and reciting in a transport
of passion and love-longing these lines,

"A breeze of love on my soul did blow * That consumed my liver
     for stress of lowe;
When my sweetheart went all my longings grew; * And with tears in
     torrent mine eyelids flow:
Such my doubt and fears, did I tell their tale * To deaf rocks
     and pebbles they'd melt for woe.
Would Heaven I wot shall I sight delight, * And shall win my wish
     and my friend shall know!
Shall be folded up nights that doomed us part * And I be healed
     of what harms my heart?"

—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Forty-ninth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that while Masrur,
transported by passion and love-longing, was repeating his couplets in
sing-song tone Hubub knocked at his door; so he rose and opened to her,
and she entered and gave him the letter. He read it and said to her, "O
Hubub, what is behind thee of thy lady's news[FN#325]?" She answered,
"O my lord, verily, in this letter is that dispenseth me from reply,
for thou art of those who readily descry!" Thereat he rejoiced with joy
exceeding and repeated these two couplets,

"Came the writ whose contents a new joy revealed, * Which in
     vitals mine I would keep ensealed:
And my longings grew when I kissed that writ, * As were pearl of
     passion therein concealed."

Then he wrote a letter answering hers and gave it to Hubub, who took it
and returned with it to her mistress and forthright fell to extolling
his charms to her and expiating on his good gifts and generosity; for
she was become a helper to him, to bring about his union with her lady.
Quoth Zayn al-Mawasif, "O Hubub, indeed he tarrieth to come to us;" and
quoth Hubub, "He will certainly come soon." Hardly had she made an end
of speaking when behold, he knocked at the door, and she opened to him
and brought him in to her mistress, who saluted him with the
salam[FN#326] and welcomed him and seated him by her side. Then she
said to Hubub, "Bring me a suit of brocade;" so she brought a robe
broidered with gold and Zayn al-Mawasif threw it over him, whilst she
herself donned one of the richest dresses and crowned her head with a
net of pearls of the freshest water. About this she bound a fillet of
brocade, purfled with pearls, jacinths and other jewels, from beneath
which she let down two tresses[FN#327] each looped with a pendant of
ruby, charactered with glittering gold, and she loosed her hair, as it
were the sombrest night; and lastly she incensed herself with
aloes-wood and scented herself with musk and ambergris, and Hubub said
to her, "Allah save thee from the evil eye!" Then she began to walk,
swaying from side to side with gracefullest gait, whilst Hubub who
excelled in verse-making, recited in her honour these couplets,

"Shamed is the bough of Bán by pace of her; * And harmed are
     lovers by the gaze of her.
A moon she rose from murks, the hair of her, * A sun from locks
     the brow encase of her:
Blest he she nights with by the grace of her, * Who dies in her
     with oath by days of her!"

So Zayn al-Mawasif thanked her and went up to Masrur, as she were full
moon displayed. But when he saw her, he rose to his feet and exclaimed,
"An my thought deceive me not, she is no human, but one of the brides
of Heaven!" Then she called for food and they brought a table, about
whose marge were written these couplets,[FN#328]

"Dip thou with spoons in saucers four and gladden heart and eye *
     With many a various kind of stew and fricassee and fry.
Thereon fat quails (ne'er shall I cease to love and tender them)
     * And rails and fowls and dainty birds of all the kinds that
Glory to God for the Kabobs, for redness all aglow, * And
     potherbs, steeped in vinegar, in porringers thereby!
Fair fall the rice with sweet milk dressed, wherein the hands did
     plunge * And eke the forearms of the fair were buried,
How my heart yearneth with regret over two plates of fish * That
     by two manchet-cakes of bread of Tewarij[FN#329] did lie!"

Then they ate and drank and made mirth and merriment, after which the
servants removed the table of food and set on the wine service; so cup
and tasse[FN#330] passed round between them and they were gladdened in
soul. Then Masrur filled the cup and saying, "O whose thrall am I and
who is my mistress!"[FN#331] chanted these improvised couplets,

"Mine eyes I admire that can feed their fill * On charms of a
     girl rising worlds to light:
In her time she hath none to compare for gifts * Of spirit and
     body a mere delight.
Her shape breeds envy in Cassia-tree * When fares she forth in
     her symmetry dight:
With luminous brow shaming moon of dark * And crown-like crescent
     the brightest bright.
When treads she earth's surface her fragrance scents * The Zephyr
     that breathes over plain and height."

When he ended his extempore song she said, "O Masrur, whoso religiously
keepeth his faith and hath eaten our bread and salt, it behoveth us to
give him his due; so put away from thee all thought of what hath been
and I will restore thee thy lands and houses and all we have taken from
thee." He replied, "O my lady, I acquit thee of that whereof thou
speakest, though thou hadst been false to the oath and covenant between
us; for I will go and become a Moslem." Zayn al-Mawasif protested that
she would follow suit[FN#332] when Hubub cried to her, "O my lady, thou
art young of years and knowest many things, and I claim the
intercession of Almighty Allah with thee for, except thou do my bidding
and heal my heart, I will not lie the night with thee in the house."
And she replied, "O Hubub, it shall be as thou wilt. Rise and make us
ready another sitting-room." So she sprang to her feet and gat ready a
room and adorned and perfumed it after fairest fashion even as her lady
loved and preferred; after which she again set on food and wine, and
the cup went round between them and their hearts were glad.—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fiftieth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Zayn
al-Mawasif bade her maid Hubub make ready a private sitting-room she
arose and did her bidding, after which she again set food and wine
before them and cup and tasse went round gladdening their hearts.
Presently quoth Zayn al-Mawasif, "O Masrur, come is the time of Union
and favour; so, as thou studiest my love to savour recite us some
verses surpassing of flavour. " Upon this he recited the following

"I am taken: my heart bums with living flame
For Union shorn whenas Severance came,
In the love of a damsel who forced my soul
And with delicate cheeklet my reason stole.
She hath eyebrows united and eyes black-white
And her teeth are leven that smiles in light:
The tale of her years is but ten plus four;
Tears like Dragon's blood[FN#334] for her love I pour.
First I saw that face 'mid parterre and rill,
Outshining full Lune on horizon-hill;
And stood like a captive for awe, and cried,
'Allah's Peace, O who in demesne[FN#335] doth hide!'
She returned my salam, gaily answering
With the sweetest speech likest pearls a-string.
But when heard my words, she right soon had known
My want and her heart waxed hard as stone,
And quoth she, 'Be not this a word silly-bold?'
But quoth I, 'Refrain thee nor flyte and scold!
An to-day thou consent such affair were light;
They like is the loved, mine the lover-wight!'
When she knew my mind she but smiled in mirth
And cried, 'Now, by the Maker of Heaven and Earth!
I'm a Jewess of Jewry's driest e'er seen
And thou art naught save a Nazarene.
Why seek my favours? Thine's other caste;
An this deed thou do thou'lt repent the past.
Say, does Love allow with two Faiths to play?
Men shall blame thee like me, at each break of day!
Wilt thou laugh at beliefs and deride their rite,
And in thine and mine prove thee sinful sprite?
An thou lovedest me thou hadst turnčd Jew,
Losing worlds for love and my favours due;
And by the Evangel strong oath hadst sworn
To keep our secret intact from scorn!'
So I took the Torah and sware strong oath
I would hold to the covenant made by both.
Then by law, religion and creed I sware,
And bound her by oaths that most binding were;
And asked her, 'Thy name, O my dear delight?'
And she, 'Zayn al-Mawásif at home I'm hight!'
'O Zayn al-Mawasif!' (cried I) 'Hear my call:
Thy love hath made me thy veriest thrall!'
Then I peeped 'neath her chin-veil and 'spied such charms
That the longing of love filled my heart with qualms.
'Neath the curtain I ceased not to humble me,
And complain of my heart-felt misery;
But when she saw me by Love beguiled
She raised her face-veil and sweetly smiled:
And when breeze of Union our faces kiss'd
With musk-pod she scented fair neck and wrist;
And the house with her essences seemed to drip,
And I kissed pure wine from each smiling lip:
Then like branch of Bán 'neath her robe she swayed
And joys erst unlawful[FN#336] she lawful made:
And joined, conjoined through our night we lay
With clip, kiss of inner lip, langue fourrée.
The world hath no grace but the one loved fere
In thine arms to clasp with possession sheer!
With the morn she rose and she bade Good-bye
While her brow shone brighter than moon a-sky;
Reciting at parting (while tear-drops hung
On her cheeks, these scattered and other strung),[FN#337]
'Allah's pact in mind all my life I'll bear
And the lovely nights and strong oath I sware.'"

Zayn al-Mawasif was delighted and said to him, "O Masrur, how goodly
are thy inner gifts! May he live not who would harm thy heart!" Then
she entered her boudoir and called him: so he went in to her and taking
her in his arms, embraced her and hugged her and kissed her and got of
her that which he had deemed impossible and rejoiced in winning the
sweet of amorous will. Then said she, "O Masrur, thy good is unlawful
to me and is lawfully thine again now that we are become lovers." So
she returned to him all she had taken of him and asked him, "O Masrur,
hast thou a flower-garden whither we may wend and take our pleasure?";
whereto he answered, "Yes, O my lady, I have a garden that hath not its
like." Then he returned to his lodgings and bade his slave-girls make
ready a splendid banquet in a handsome room; after which he summoned
Zayn al-Mawasif who came surrounded by her damsels, and they ate and
drank and made mirth and merriment, whilst the cup passed round between
them and their spirits rose high. Then lover withdrew with beloved and
Zayn al-Mawasif said to Masrur, "I have bethought me of some dainty
verses, which I would fain sing to the lute." He replied, "Do sing
them"; so she took the lute and tuning it, sang to a pleasant air these

"Joy from stroke of string doth to me incline, * And sweet is
     a-morning our early wine;
Whenas Love unveileth the amourist's heart, * And by rending the
     veil he displays his sign,
With a draught so pure, so dear, so bright, * As in hand of
     Moons[FN#338] the Sun's sheeny shine
O' nights it cometh with joy to 'rase * The hoar of sorrow by
     boon divine."

Then ending her verse, she said to him, "O Masrur, recite us somewhat
of thy poetry and favour us with the fruit of thy thought." So he
recited these two couplets,

"We joy in full Moon who the wine bears round, * And in concert
     of lutes that from gardens sound;
Where the dove moans at dawn and where bends the bough * To Morn,
     and all pathways of pleasure are found."

When he had finished his recitation she said to him, "Make us some
verses on that which hath passed between us an thou be occupied with
love of me."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifty-first Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Zayn
al-Mawasif said to Masrur, "An thou be occupied with love of me, make
us some verses on that hath passed between us," "With love and
gladness," he replied and improvised the following Kasídah[FN#339],

"Stand thou and hear what fell to me * For love of you gazelle to
Shot me a white doe with her shaft * O' glances wounding
Love was my ruin, for was I * Straitened by longing ecstasy:
I loved and woo'd a young coquette * Girded by strong artillery,
Whom in a garth I first beheld * A form whose sight was symmetry.
I greeted her and when she deigned * Greeting return, 'Salám,'
     quoth she
'What be thy name?' said I, she said, * 'My name declares my
'Zayn al-Mawásif I am hight.' * Cried I, 'Oh deign I mercy see,'
'Such is the longing in my heart * No lover claimeth rivalry!'
Quoth she, 'With me an thou 'rt in love * And to enjoy me
     pleadest plea,
I want of thee oh! muchel wealth; * Beyond all compt my wants o'
I want o' thee full many a robe * Of sendal, silk and damaskry;
A quarter quintal eke of musk: * These of one night shall pay the
Pearls, unions and carnelian[FN#341]-stones * The bestest best of
Of fairest patience showed I show * In contrariety albe:
At last she favoured me one night * When rose the moon a crescent
An stranger blame me for her sake * I say, 'O blamers listen ye!
She showeth locks of goodly length * And black as blackest night
     its blee;
While on her cheeks the roses glow * Like Lazá-flame incendiary:
In every eyelash is a sword * And every glance hath archery:
Her liplets twain old wine contain, * And dews of fount-like
Her teeth resemble strings o' pearls, * Arrayed in line and fresh
     from sea:
Her neck is like the neck of doe, * Pretty and carven perfectly:
Her bosom is a marble slab * Whence rise two breasts like towers
     on lea:
And on her stomach shows a crease * Perfumed with rich perfumery;
Beneath which same there lurks a Thing * Limit of mine
A something rounded, cushioned-high * And plump, my lords, to
     high degree:
To me 'tis likest royal throne * Whither my longings wander free;
There 'twixt two pillars man shall find * Benches of high-built
It hath specific qualities * Drive sanest men t' insanity;
Full mouth it hath like mouth of neck * Or well begirt by stony
Firm lips with camelry's compare * And shows it eye of cramoisie.
An draw thou nigh with doughty will * To do thy doing lustily,
Thou'll find it fain to face thy bout * And strong and fierce in
It bendeth backwards every brave * Shorn of his battle-bravery.
At times imberbe, but full of spunk * To battle with the
'T will show thee liveliness galore * And perfect in its
Zayn al-Mawasif it is like * Complete in charms and courtesy.
To her dear arms one night I came * And won meed given lawfully:
I passed with her that self-same night * (Best of my nights!) in
     gladdest glee;
And when the morning rose, she rose * And crescent like her
Then swayed her supple form as sway * The lances lopt from limber
And when farewelling me she cried, * 'When shall such nights
     return to me?'
Then I replied, 'O eyen-light, * When He vouchsafeth His

Zayn al-Mawasif was delighted with this Ode and the utmost gladness gat
hold of her. Then said she, "O Masrur day-dawn draweth nigh and there
is naught for it save to fly for fear of scandal and spy!" He replied,
"I hear and obey," and rising led her to her lodging, after which he
returned to his quarters[FN#343] and passed the rest of the night
pondering on her charms. When the morning morrowed with its sheen and
shone, he made ready a splendid present and carried it to her and sat
by her side. And thus they abode awhile, in all solace of life and its
delight, till one day there came to Zayn al-Mawasif a letter from her
husband reporting to her his speedy return. Thereupon she said in
herself, "May Allah not keep him nor quicken him! If he come hither,
our life will be troubled: would Heaven I might despair of him!"
Presently entered Masrur and sat with her at chat, as was his wont,
whereupon she said to him, "O Masrur, I have received a missive from my
mate, announcing his speedy return from his wayfaring. What is to be
done, since neither of us without other can live?" He replied, "I know
not; but thou art better able to judge, being acquainted with the ways
of thy man, more by token that thou art one of the sharpest-witted of
women and past mistress of devices such as devise that whereof fail the
wise." Quoth she, "He is a hard man and jealous of his household: but,
when he shall come home and thou hearest of his coming, do thou repair
to him and salute him and sit down by his side, saying, 'O my brother,
I am a druggist.' Then buy of him somewhat of drugs and spices of sorts
and call upon him frequently and prolong thy talks with him and gainsay
him not in whatsoever he shall bid thee; so haply that I would contrive
may betide, as it were by chance." "I hear and I obey," quoth Masrur
and fared forth from her, with heart a-fire for love. When her husband
came home, she rejoiced in meeting him and after saluting him bade him
welcome; but he looked in her face and seeing it pale and sallow (for
she had washed it with saffron, using one of women's arts), asked her
of her case. She answered that she had been sick, she and her women,
from the time of his wayfaring, adding, "Verily, our hearts have been
engrossed with thoughts of thee because of the length of thine
absence." And she went on to complain to him of the misery of
separation and to pour forth copious tears, saying, "Hadst thou but a
companion with thee, my heart had not borne all this cark and care for
thee. So, Allah upon thee, O my lord, travel not again without a
comrade and cut me not off from news of thee, that my heart and mind
may be at rest concerning thee!"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifty-second Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Zayn
al-Mawasif said to her mate, "Travel not without comrade and cut me not
off from news of thee, that my heart and mind may be at rest concerning
thee," he replied, "With love and gladness! By Allah thy bede is good
indeed and right is thy rede! By thy life, it shall be as thou dost
heed." Then he unpacked some of his stock-in-trade and carrying the
goods to his shop, opened it and sat down to sell in the Soko.[FN#344]
No sooner had he taken his place than lo and behold! up came Masrur and
saluting him, sat down by his side and began talking and talked with
him awhile. Then he pulled out a purse and taking forth gold, handed it
to Zayn al-Mawasif's man and said, "Give me the worth of these dinars
in drugs and spices of sorts, that I may sell them in my shop." The Jew
replied, "I hear and I obey," and gave him what he sought. And Masrur
continued to pay him frequent visits till, one day, the merchant said
to him, "I have a mind to take me a man to partner in trade." Quoth
Masrur, "And I also, desire to take a partner; for my father was a
merchant in the land of Al-Yaman and left me great store of money and I
fear lest it fare from me." Quoth the Jew, turning towards him, "Wilt
thou be my partner, and I will be thy partner and a true friend and
comrade to thee at home and abroad; and I will teach thee selling and
buying, giving and taking?" And Masrur rejoined, "With all my heart."
So the merchant carried him to his place and seated him in the
vestibule, whilst he went in to his wife and said to her, "I have
provided me with a partner and have bidden him hither as a guest; so do
thou get us ready good guest-cheer." Whenas she heard this, she
rejoiced divining that it was Masrur, and made ready a magnificent
banquet,[FN#345] of her delight in the success of her device. Then,
when the guest drew nigh, her husband said to her, "Come out with me to
him and bid him welcome and say, 'Thou gladdenest us[FN#346]!'" But
Zayn al-Mawasif made a show of anger, crying, "Wilt thou have me
display myself before a strange man? I take refuge with Allah! Though
thou cut me to bits, I will not appear before him!" Rejoined he, "Why
shouldst thou be abashed at him, seeing that he is a Nazarene and we
are Jews and, to boot, we are become chums, he and I?" Quoth she, "I am
not minded to present myself before a strange man, on whom I have never
once set eyes and whom I know not any wise." Her husband thought she
spoke sooth and ceased not to importune her, till she rose and veiling
herself, took the food and went out to Masrur and welcomed him;
whereupon he bowed his head groundwards, as he were ashamed, and the
Jew, seeing such dejection said in himself, "Doubtless, this man is a
devotee." They ate their fill and the table being removed, wine was set
on. As for Zayn al-Mawasif, she sat over against Masrur and gazed on
him and he gazed on her till ended day, when he went home, with a heart
to fire a prey. But the Jew abode pondering the grace and the
comeliness of him; and, as soon as it was night, his wife according to
custom served him with supper and they seated themselves before it. Now
he had a mockingbird which was wont, whenever he sat down to meat, to
come and eat with him and hover over his head; but in his absence the
fowl was grown familiar with Masrur and used to flutter about him as he
sat at meals. Now when Masrur disappeared and the master returned, it
knew him not and would not draw near him, and this made him thoughtful
concerning his case and the fowl's withdrawing from him. As for Zayn
al-Mawasif, she could not sleep with her heart thinking of Masrur, and
thus it was with her a second and even a third night, till the Jew
became aware of her condition and, watching her while she sat
distraught, began to suspect somewhat wrong. On the fourth night, he
awoke in the middle thereof and heard his wife babbling in her sleep
and naming Masrur, what while she lay on her husband's bosom, wherefore
he misdoubted her; but he dissembled his suspicions and when morning
morrowed he repaired to his shop and sat therein. Presently, up came
Masrur and saluted him. He returned his salam and said to him,
"Welcome, O my brother!" adding anon, "I have wished for thee;" and he
sat talking with him for an hour or so, after which he said to him,
"Rise, O my brother, and hie with me to my house, that we may enter
into the pact of brotherhood."[FN#347] Replied Masrur, "With joy and
goodly gree," and they repaired to the Jew's house, where the master
went in and told his wife of Masrur's visit, for the purpose of
conditioning their partnership, and said, "Make us ready a goodly
entertainment, and needs must thou be present and witness our
brotherhood." But she replied, "Allah upon thee, cause me not show
myself to this strange man, for I have no mind to company with him." So
he held his peace and forbore to press her and bade the waiting-women
bring food and drink. Then he called the mocking-bird but it knew not
its lord and settled upon Masrur's lap; and the Jew said to him, "O my
master, what is thy name?" He answered, "My name is Masrur;" whereupon
the Jew remembered that this was the name which his wife had repeated
all night long in her sleep. Presently, he raised his head and saw her
making signs[FN#348] with her forefingers to Masrur and motioning to
him with her eyes, wherefore he knew that he had been completely
cozened and cuckolded and said, "O my lord, excuse me awhile, till I
fetch my kinsmen, so they may be present at our swearing brotherhood."
Quoth Masrur, "Do what seemeth good to thee;" whereupon the Jew went
forth the house and returning privily by a back way.—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifty-third Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Zayn
al-Mawasif's husband said to Masrur, "Excuse me awhile, till I fetch my
cousins to witness the brother-bond between me and thee." Then he went
forth and, privily returning behind the sitting-room, there took his
station hard by a window which gave upon the saloon and whence he could
watch them without their seeing him. Suddenly quoth Zayn al-Mawasif to
her maid Sukub, "Whither is thy master gone?"; and quoth she, "He is
gone without the house." Cried the mistress, "Lock the door and bar it
with iron and open thou not till he knock, after thou hast told me."
Answered Sukub, "So shall it be done." Then, while her husband watched
them, she rose and filling a cup with wine, flavoured with powdered
musk and rose-water, went close to Masrur, who sprang up to meet her,
saying, "By Allah, the water of thy mouth is sweeter than this wine!"
"Here it is for thee," said she and filling her mouth with wine, gave
him to drink thereof, whilst he gave her the like to drink; after which
she sprinkled him with rose-water from front to foot, till the perfume
scented the whole place. All this while, the Jew was looking on and
marvelling at the stress of love that was between them, and his heart
was filled with fury for what he saw and he was not only wroth, but
jealous with exceeding jealousy. Then he went out again and coming to
the door found it locked and knocked a loud knock of the excess of his
rage; whereupon quoth Sukub, "O my lady, here is my master;" and quoth
Zayn al-Mawasif, "Open to him; would that Allah had not brought him
back in safety!" So Sukub went and opened the door to the Jew, who said
to her, "What ailed thee to lock the door?" Quoth she, "It hath never
ceased to be locked thus during thine absence; nor hath it been opened
night nor day;" and cried he, "Thou hast done well; this pleaseth me."
Then he went in to Masrur, laughing and dissembling his chagrin, and
said to him, "O Masrur, let us put off the conclusion of our pact of
brotherhood this day and defer it to another." Replied Masrur, "As thou
wilt," and hied him home, leaving the Jew pondering his case and
knowing not what to do; for his heart was sore troubled and he said in
himself, "Even the mocking-bird disowneth me and the slave-girls shut
the door in my face and favour another." And of his exceeding chagrin,
he fell to reciting these couplets,

"Masrur joys life made fair by all delight of days, * Fulfilled
     of boons, while mine the sorest grief displays.
The Days have falsed me in the breast of her I love * And in my
     heart are fires which all-consuming blaze:
Yea, Time was clear for thee, but now 'tis past and gone * While
     yet her lovely charms thy wit and senses daze:
Espied these eyes of mine her gifts of loveliness: * Oh, hard my
     case and sore my woe on spirit weighs!
I saw the maiden of the tribe deal rich old wine * Of lips like
     Salsabíl to friend my love betrays:
E'en so, O mocking-bird, thou dost betray my breast * And to a
     rival teachest Love and lover-ways:
Strange things indeed and wondrous saw these eyne of me * Which
     were they sleep-drowned still from Sleep's abyss would raise:
I see my best belovčd hath forsworn my love * And eke like my
     mocking-bird fro' me a-startled strays.
By truth of Allah, Lord of Worlds who, whatso wills * His Fate,
     for creatures works and none His hest gainsays,
Forsure I'll deal to that ungodly wight his due * Who but to sate
     his wicked will her heart withdrew!"

When Zayn al-Mawasif heard this, her side-muscles trembled and quoth
she to her handmaid, "Heardest thou those lines?"; whereupon quoth the
girl, "I never heard him in my born days recite the like of these
verses; but let him say what he will." Then having assured himself of
the truth of his suspicions, the Jew began to sell all his property,
saying to himself, "Unless I part them by removing her from her mother
land the twain will not turn back from this that they are engaged in,
no, never!" So, when he had converted all his possessions into coin, he
forged a letter and read it to Zayn al-Mawasif, declaring that it had
come from his kinsmen, who invited him to visit them, him and his wife.
She asked, "How long shall we tarry with them?" and he answered,
"Twelve days." Accordingly she consented to this and said, "Shall I
take any of my maids with me?"; whereto he replied, "Take Hubub and
Sukub and leave Khutub here." Then he made ready a handsome
camel-litter[FN#349] for his spouse and her women and prepared to set
out with them; whilst she sent to her leman, telling him what had
betided her and saying, "O Masrur, an the trysting-time[FN#350] that is
between us pass and I come not back, know that he hath cheated and
cozened us and planned a plot to separate us each from other, so forget
thou not the plighted faith betwixt us, for I fear that he hath found
out our love and I dread his craft and perfidy." Then, whilst her man
was busy about his march she fell a-weeping and lamenting and no peace
was left her, night or day. Her husband saw this, but took no note
thereof; and when she saw there was scant help for it, she gathered
together her clothes and gear and deposited them with her sister,
telling her what had befallen her. Then she farewelled her and going
out from her, drowned in tears, returned to her own house, where she
found her husband had brought the camels and was busy loading them,
having set apart the handsomest dromedary for her riding, and when she
saw this and knew that needs must she be separated from Masrur, she
waxt clean distraught. Presently it chanced that the Jew went out on
some business of his; so she fared forth to the first or outer door and
wrote thereon these couplets,—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifty-fourth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Zayn
al-Mawasif saw her spouse summon the camels and knew that the march
needs must be, she waxt clean distraught. Presently it chanced that the
Jew went out on some business so she fared forth to the first door and
wrote thereon these couplets,

"Bear our salams, O Dove, from this our stead * From lover to
     beloved far severčd!
Bid him fro' me ne'er cease to yearn and mourn * O'er happy days
     and hours for ever fled:
Eke I in grief shall ever mourn and yearn, * Dwelling on days of
     love and lustihead;
Long was our joyance, seeming aye to last, * When night and
     morning to reunion led;
Till croaked the Raven[FN#351] of the Wold one day * His cursed
     croak and did our union dead.
We sped and left the homestead dark and void * Its gates
     unpeopled and its dwellers sped."

Then she went to the second door and wrote thereon these couplets,

"O who passest this doorway, by Allah, see * The charms of my
     fere in the glooms and make plea
For me, saying, 'I think of the Past and weep * Yet boot me no
     tears flowing full and free.'
Say, 'An fail thee patience for what befel * Scatter earth and
     dust on the head of thee!
And o'er travel lands East and West, and deem * God sufficeth thy
     case, so bear patiently!'"

Then she went to the third door and wept sore and thereon wrote these

"Fare softly, Masrúr! an her sanctuary * Thou seek, and read what
     a-door writ she.
Ne'er forget Love-plight, if true man; how oft * Hast savoured
     Nights' bitter and sweetest gree!
O Masrúr! forget not her neighbourhood * For wi' thee must her
     gladness and joyance flee!
But beweep those dearest united days * When thou camest veilčd in
Wend for sake of us over farthest wone; * Span the wold for us,
     for us dive in sea;
Allah bless the past days! Ah, how glad they were * When in
     Gardens of Fancy the flowers pluckt we!
The nights of Union from us are fled * And parting-glooms dim
     their radiancy;
Ah! had this lasted as hopčd we, but * He left only our breasts
     and the rosery.
Will revolving days on Re-union dawn? * Then our vow to the Lord
     shall accomplisht be.
Learn thou our lots are in hand of Him * Who on lines of
     skull[FN#352] writes our destiny!"

Then she wept with sore weeping and returned to the house, wailing and
remembering what had passed and saying, "Glory be to God who hath
decreed to us this!" And her affliction redoubled for severance from
her beloved and her departure from her mother-land, and she recited
these couplets,

"Allah's peace on thee, House of Vacancy! * Ceased in thee all
     our joys, all our jubilee.
O thou Dove of the homestead, ne'er cease to bemoan * Whose moons
     and full moons[FN#353] sorest severance dree:
Masrúr, fare softly and mourn our loss; * Loving thee our eyes
     lose their brilliancy:
Would thy sight had seen, on our marching day, * Tears shed by a
     heart in Hell's flagrancy!
Forget not the plight in the garth-shade pledged * When we sat
     enveiléd in privacy:"

Then she presented herself before her husband, who lifted her into the
litter he had let make for her; and, when she found herself on the
camel's back, she recited these couplets,

"The Lord, empty House! to thee peace decree * Long we bore
     therein growth of misery:
Would my life-thread were shorn in that safe abode * And o' night
     I had died in mine ecstasy!
Home-sickness I mourn, and my strangerhood * Irks my soul, nor
     the riddle of future I ree.
Would I wot shall I ever that house resee * And find it, as erst,
     home of joy and glee!"

Said her husband, "O Zayn al-Mawasif grieve not for thy departure from
thy dwelling; for thou shalt return to it ere long Inshallah!" And he
went on to comfort her heart and soothe her sorrow. Then all set out
and fared on till they came without the town and struck into the high
road, whereupon she knew that separation was certain and this was very
grievous to her. And while such things happened Masrur sat in his
quarters, pondering his case and that of his mistress, and his heart
forewarned him of severance. So he rose without stay and delay and
repairing to her house, found the outer door padlocked and read the
couplets she had written thereon; upon which he fell down in a fainting
fit. When he came to himself, he opened the first door and entering,
read what was written upon the second and likewise upon the third
doors; wherefore passion and love-longing and distraction grew on him.
So he went forth and hastened in her track, till he came up with the
light caravan[FN#354] and found her at the rear, whilst her husband
rode in the van, because of his merchandise. When he saw her, he clung
to the litter, weeping and wailing for the anguish of parting, and
recited these couplets,

"Would I wot for what crime shot and pierced are we * Thro' the
     days with Estrangement's archery!
O my heart's desire, to thy door I came * One day, when high waxt
     mine expectancy:
But I found the home waste as the wold and void * And I 'plained
     my pine and groaned wretchedly:
And I asked the walls of my friends who fared * With my heart in
     pawn and in pendency;
And they said, 'All marched from the camp and left *An ambushed
     sorrow on hill and lea;'
And a writ on the walls did they write, as write * Folk who keep
     their faith while the Worlds are three."

Now when Zayn al-Mawasif heard these lines, she knew that it was
Masrur.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifty-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Zayn
al-Mawasif heard these lines she knew that it was Masrur and wept, she
and her handmaids, and said to him, "O Masrur, I conjure thee by Allah,
turn back, lest my husband see us twain together!" At her words he
swooned away; and when he revived, they took leave each of other and he
recited the following couplets,

"The Caravan-chief calleth loud o' night * Ere the Breeze bear
     his cry in the morning-light:
They girded their loads and prepared to fare, * And hurried while
     murmured the leader-wight.
They scent the scene on its every side, * As their march through
     the valley they expedite.
After winning my heart by their love they went * O' morn when
     their track could deceive my sight.
O my neighbour fair, I reckt ne'er to part, * Or the ground
     bedewed with my tears to sight!
Woe betide my heart, now hath Severance hand * To heart and
     vitals dealt bane and blight."

Then he clung to the litter, weeping and wailing, whilst she besought
him to turn back ere morn for fear of scorn. So he came up to her
Haudaj and farewelling her a second time, fell down in a swoon. He lay
an hour or so without life, and when he revived he found the caravan
had fared forth of sight. So he turned in the direction of their
wayfare and scenting the breeze which blew from their quarter, chanted
these improvised lines,

"No breeze of Union to the lover blows * But moan he maketh burnt
     with fiery woes:
The Zephyr fans him at the dawn o' day; * But when he wakes the
     horizon lonely shows:
On bed of sickness strewn in pain he lies, * And weeps he bloody
     tears in burning throes,
For the fair neighbour with my heart they bore * 'Mid travellers
     urging beasts with cries and blows.
By Allah from their stead no Zephyr blew * But sniffed I as the
     wight on eyeballs goes;[FN#355]
And snuff the sweetest South as musk it breathes * And on the
     longing lover scent bestows."

Then Masrur returned, mad with love-longing, to her house, and finding
it lone from end to end[FN#356] and forlorn of friend, wept till he wet
his clothes; after which he swooned away and his soul was like to leave
his body. When he revived, he recited these two couplets,

"O Spring-camp have ruth on mine overthrowing * My abjection, my
     leanness, my tears aye flowing,
Waft the scented powder[FN#357] of breezes they breathe * In hope
     it cure heart of a grief e'er growing."

Then he returned to his own lodging confounded and tearful-eyed, and
abode there for the space of ten days. Such was his case; but as
regards the Jew, he journeyed on with Zayn al-Mawasif half a score
days, at the end of which he halted at a certain city and she, being by
that time assured that her husband had played her false, wrote to
Masrur a letter and gave it to Hubub, saying, "Send this to Masrur, so
he may know how foully and fully we have been tricked and how the Jew
hath cheated us." So Hubub took it and despatched it to Masrur, and
when it reached, its news was grievous to him and he wept till he
watered the ground. Then he wrote a reply and sent it to his mistress,
subscribing it with these two couplets,

"Where is the way to Consolation's door * How shall console him
     flames burn evermore?
How pleasant were the days of yore all gone: * Would we had
     somewhat of those days of yore!"

When the missive reached Zayn al-Mawasif, she read it and again gave it
to her handmaid Hubub, saying to her, "Keep it secret!" However, the
husband came to know of their correspondence and removed with her and
her two women to another city, at a distance of twenty days' march.
Thus it befel Zayn al-Mawasif; but as regards Masrur, sleep was not
sweet to him nor was peace peaceful to him or patience left to him, and
he ceased not to be thus till, one night, his eyes closed for weariness
and he dreamt that he saw Zayn al-Mawasif come to him in the garden and
embrace him; but presently he awoke and found her not: whereupon his
reason fled and his wits wandered and his eyes ran over with tears;
love-longing to the utterest gat hold of his heart and he recited these

"Peace be to her, who visits me in sleeping phantasy * Stirring
     desire and growing love to uttermost degree:
Verily from that dream I rose with passion maddenčd * For sight
     of fairest phantom come in piece to visit me:
Say me, can dreams declare the truth anent the maid I love, * And
     quench the fires of thirst and heal my love-sick malady?
Anon to me she is liberal and she strains me to her breast; *
     Anon she soothes mine anxious heart with sweetest
From off her dark-red damask lips the dew I wont to sip * The
     fine old wine that seemed to reek of musk's perfumery.
I wondered at the wondrous things between us done in dreams, *
     And won my wish and all my will of things I hoped to see;
And from that dreamery I rose, yet ne'er could hope to find *
     Trace of my phantom save my pain and fiery misery:
And when I looked on her a-morn, 'twas as a lover mad * And every
     eve was drunken yet no wine brought jollity.
O breathings of the northern breeze, by Allah fro' me bear *
     Them-wards the greetings of my love and best salams that be:
Say them, 'The wight with whom ye made that plight of fealty *
     Time with his changes made him drain Death's cup and slain
     is he!'"

Then he went out and ceased not to weep till he came to her house and
looking on it, saw it empty and void. Presently, it seemed to him he
beheld her form before him, whereupon fires flamed in him and his
griefs redoubled and he fell down aswoon;—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifty-sixth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Masrur
saw the vision of Zayn al-Mawasif and felt her embrace, he joyed with
passing joy. As soon as he awoke he sought her house, but finding it
empty and void he fell down a-swoon; and when he came to himself, he
recited these couplets,

"Fro' them inhale I scent of Ottar and of Bán; * So fare with
     heart which ecstasies of love unman:
I'd heal thy longings (love-sick lover!) by return * To site of
     beauty void sans friend or mate to scan:
But still it sickeneth me with parting's ban and bane * Minding
     mine olden plight with friend and partisan."

When he had made an end of these verses, he heard a raven croak beside
the house and wept, saying, "Glory be to God! The raven croaketh not
save over a ruined homestead." Then he moaned and groaned and recited
these couplets,

"What ails the Raven that he croaks my lover's house hard by, *
     And in my vitals lights a fire that flameth fierce and high?
For times now past and gone I spent in joyance of their love *
     With love my heart hath gone to waste and I sore pain aby:
I die of longing love and lowe still in my liver raging * And
     wrote to her but none there is who with the writ may hie:
Ah well-away for wasted frame! Hath farčd forth my friend * And
     if she will o' nights return Oh would that thing wot I!
Then, Ho thou Breeze of East, and thou by morn e'er visit her; *
     Greet her from me and stand where doth her tribe encampčd

Now Zayn al-Mawasif had a sister, by name Nasím—the Zephyr—who stood
espying him from a high place; and when she saw him in this plight, she
wept and sighed and recited these couplets,

"How oft bewailing the place shall be this coming and going, *
     While the House bemoaneth its builder with tear-flood ever
Here was bestest joy ere fared my friend with the caravan hieing
     * And its dwellers and brightest-suns[FN#358] ne'er ceased
     in its walls a-glowing:
Where be those fullest moons that here were always arising? *
     Bedimmed them the Shafts of Days their charms of spirit
Leave then what is past of the Fair thou wast ever with love
     espying * And look; for haply the days may restore them
     without foreshowing:
For hadst thou not been, its dwellers had never departed flying *
     Nor haddest thou seen the Crow with ill-omened croak

Masrur wept sore hearing these verses and apprehending their
significance. Now Nasim knew that which was between him and her sister
of love and longing, ecstasy and passion; so she said to him, "Allah
upon thee, O Masrur, away from this house, lest any see thee and deem
thou comest on my account! Indeed thou hast caused my sister quit it
and now thou wouldst drive me also away. Thou knowest that, but for
thee, the house would not now be void of its dwellers: so be consoled
for her loss and leave her: what is past is past." When he heard this,
he wept bitterly and said to her, "O Nasim, if I could, I should fly
for longing after her; so how can I be comforted for her?" Quoth she,
"Thou hast no device save patience;" and quoth he, "I beseech thee, for
Allah's sake, write me a writ to her, as from thyself, and get me an
answer from her, to comfort my heart and quench the fire in my vitals."
She replied, "With love and gladness," and took inkcase and paper,
whilst Masrur began to set out to her the violence of his longing and
what tortures he suffered for the anguish of severance, saying, "This
letter is from the lover despairing and sorrowful * the bereaved, the
woeful * with whom no peace can stay * nor by night nor by day * but he
weepeth copious tears alway. * Indeed, tears his eyelids have ulcerated
and his sorrows have kindled in his liver a fire unsated. His
lamentation is lengthened and restlessness is strengthened and he is as
he were a bird unmated * While for sudden death he awaiteth * Alas, my
desolation for the loss of thee * and alas, my yearning affliction for
the companionship of thee! * Indeed, emaciation hath wasted my frame *
and my tears a torrent became * mountains and plains are straitened
upon me for grame * and of the excess of my distress, I go saying,

"Still cleaves to this homestead mine ecstasy, * And redoubled
     pine for its dwellers I dree;
And I send to your quarters the tale of my love * And the cup of
     your love gave the Cup-boy to me.
And for faring of you and your farness from home * My wounded
     lids are from tears ne'er free:
O thou leader of litters, turn back with my love * For my heart
     redoubleth its ardency:
Greet my love and say him that naught except * Those brown-red
     lips deals me remedy:
They bore him away and our union rent * And my vitals with
     Severance-shaft shot he:
My love, my lowe and my longing to him * Convey, for of parting
     no cure I see:
I swear an oath by your love that I * Will keep pact and covenant
To none I'll incline or forget your love * How shall love-sick
     lover forgetful be?
So with you be the peace and my greeting fair * In letters that
     perfume of musk-pod bear."

Her sister Nasim admired his eloquence of tongue and the goodliness of
his speech and the elegance of the verses he sang, and was moved to
ruth for him. So she sealed the letter with virgin musk and incensed it
with Nadd-scent and ambergris, after which she committed it to a
certain of the merchants saying, "Deliver it not to any save to Zayn
al-Mawasif or to her handmaid Hubub." Now when the letter reached her
sister, she knew it for Masrur's dictation and recognised himself in
the grace of its expression. So she kissed it and laid it on her eyes,
whilst the tears streamed from her lids and she gave not over weeping,
till she fainted. As soon as she came to herself, she called for
pencase and paper and wrote him the following answer; complaining the
while of her desire and love-longing and ecstasy and what was hers to
endure of pining for her lover and yearning to him and the passion she
had conceived for him.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifty-seventh Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Zayn
al-Mawasif wrote the following reply to Masrur's missive: "This letter
to my lord and master I indite * the king of my heart and my secret
sprite * Indeed, wakefulness agitateth me * and melancholy increaseth
on me * and I have no patience to endure the absence of thee * O thou
who excellest sun and moon in brilliancy * Desire of repose despoileth
me * and passion destroyeth me * and how should it be otherwise with
me, seeing that I am of the number of the dying? *O glory of the world
and Ornament of life, she whose vital spirits are cut off shall her cup
be sweet to quaff? * For that she is neither with the quick nor with
the dead." And she improvised these couplets and said,

"Thy writ, O Masrúr, stirred my sprite to pine * For by Allah,
     all patience and solace I tyne:
When I read thy scripture, my vitals yearned * And watered the
     herbs of the wold these eyne.
On Night's wings I'd fly an a bird * And sans thee I weet not the
     sweets of wine:
Life's unlawful to me since thou faredst far * To bear parting-
     lowe is no force of mine."

Then she sprinkled the letter with powder of musk and ambergris and,
having sealed it with her signet, committed it to a merchant, saying,
"Deliver it to none save to my sister." When it reached Nasim she sent
it to Masrur, who kissed it and laid it on his eyes and wept till he
fell into a trance. Such was their case; but as regards the Jew, he
presently heard of their correspondence and began again to travel from
place to place with Zayn al-Mawasif and her damsels, till she said to
him, "Glory to God! How long wilt thou fare with us and bear us afar
from our homes?" Quoth he, "I will fare on with you a year's journey,
so no more letters may reach you from Masrur. I see how you take all my
monies and give them to him; so all that I miss I shall recover from
you: and I shall see if Masrur will profit you or have power to deliver
you from my hand." Then he repaired to a blacksmith, after stripping
her and her damsels of their silken apparel and clothing them in
raiment of hair-cloth, and bade him make three pairs of iron shackles.
When they were ready, he brought the smith in to his wife, having said
to him, "Put the shackles on the legs of these three slave-girls." The
first that came forward was Zayn al-Mawasif, and when the blacksmith
saw her, his sense forsook him and he bit his finger tips and his wit
fled forth his head and his transport grew sore upon him. So he said to
the Jew, "What is the crime of these damsels?" Replied the other, "They
are my slave-girls, and have stolen my good and fled from me." Cried
the smith, "Allah disappoint thy jealous whims! By the Almighty, were
this girl before the Kazi of Kazis,[FN#359] he would not even reprove
her, though she committed a thousand crimes a day. Indeed, she showeth
not thief's favour and she cannot brook the laying of irons on her
legs." And he asked him as a boon not to fetter her, interceding with
him to forbear the shackles. When she saw the blacksmith taking her
part in this wise she said to her husband, "I conjure thee, by Allah,
bring me not forth before yonder strange man!" Said he, "Why then
camest thou forth before Masrur?"; and she made him no reply. Then he
accepted the smith's intercession, so far as to allow him to put a
light pair of irons on her legs, for that she had a delicate body,
which might not brook harsh usage, whilst he laid her handmaids in
heavy bilboes, and they ceased not, all three, to wear hair-cloth night
and day till their bodies became wasted and their colour changed. As
for the blacksmith, exceeding love had fallen on his heart for Zayn
al-Mawasif; so he returned home in great concern and he fell to
reciting extempore these couplets,

"Wither thy right, O smith, which made her bear * Those iron
     chains her hands and feet to wear!
Thou hast ensoiled a lady soft and bright, * Marvel of marvels,
     fairest of the fair:
Hadst thou been just, those anklets ne'er had been * Of iron: nay
     of purest gold they were:
By Allah! did the Kázis' Kázi sight * Her charms, he'd seat her
     in the highest chair."

Now it chanced that the Kazi of Kazis passed by the smith's house and
heard him improvise these lines; so he sent for him and as soon as he
saw him said to him, "O blacksmith, who is she on whom thou callest so
instantly and eloquently and with whose love thy heart is full filled?"
The smith sprang to his feet and kissing the Judge's hand, answered,
"Allah prolong the days of our lord the Kazi and ample his life!" Then
he described to him Zayn al-Mawasif's beauty and loveliness, brilliancy
and perfection, and symmetry and grace and how she was lovely faced and
had a slender waist and heavily based; and acquainted him with the
sorry plight wherein she was for abasement and durance vile and lack of
victual. When the Kazi heard this, he said, "O blacksmith, send her to
us and show her that we may do her justice, for thou art become
accountable for the damsel and unless thou guide her to us, Allah will
punish thee at the Day of Doom." "I hear and obey," replied the smith
and betook himself without stay and delay to Zayn al-Mawasif's lodging,
but found the door barred and heard a voice of plaintive tone that came
from heart forlorn and lone; and it was Zayn al-Mawasif reciting these

"I and my love in union were unite; * And filled my friend to me
     cups clearly bright
Between us reigned high mirth and jollity, * Nor Eve nor Morn
     brought 'noyance or affright
Indeed we spent most joyous time, with cup * And lute and
     dulcimer to add delight,
Till Time estranged our fair companionship; * My lover went and
     blessing turned to blight.
Ah would the Severance-raven's croak were stilled * And
     Union-dawn of Love show blessčd light!"

When the blacksmith heard this, he wept like the weeping of the clouds.
Then he knocked at the door and the women said, "Who is at the door?"
Answered he, "'Tis I, the blacksmith," and told them what the Kazi had
said and how he would have them appear before him and make their
complaint to him, that he might do them justice on their adversary.—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifty-eighth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
blacksmith told Zayn al-Mawasif what the Kazi had said, and how he
summoned them that he might apply the Lex Talionis to their adversary,
she rejoined, "How can we go to him, seeing the door is locked on us
and our feet shackled and the Jew hath the keys?" The smith replied, "I
will make the keys for the padlocks and therewith open door and
shackles." Asked she, "But who will show us the Kazi's house?"; and he
answered, "I will describe it to you." She enquired, "But how can we
appear before him, clad as we are in haircloth reeking with sulphur?"
And the smith rejoined, "The Kazi will not reproach this to you,
considering your case." So saying, he went forthright and made keys for
the padlocks, wherewith he opened the door and the shackles, and
loosing the irons from their legs, carried them forth and guided them
to the Kazi's mansion. Then Hubub did off the hair-cloth garments from
her lady's body and carried her to the Hammam, where she bathed her and
attired her in silken raiment, and her colour returned to her. Now it
happened, by exceeding good fortune, that her husband was abroad at a
bride-feast in the house of one of the merchants; so Zayn al-Mawasif,
the Adornment of Qualities, adorned herself with the fairest ornaments
and repaired to the Kazi, who at once on espying her rose to receive
her. She saluted him with softest speech and winsomest words, shooting
him through the vitals the while with the shafts of her glances, and
said, "May Allah prolong the life of our lord the Kazi and strengthen
him to judge between man and man!" Then she acquainted him with the
affair of the blacksmith and how he had done nobly by them, whenas the
Jew had inflicted on her and her women heart-confounding torments; and
how his victims deathwards he drave, nor was there any found to save.
"O damsel," quoth the Kazi, "what is thy name?" "My name is Zayn al
Mawasif,—Adomment of Qualities—and this my handmaid's name is Hubub."
"Thy name accordeth with the named and its sound conformeth with its
sense." Whereupon she smiled and veiled her face, and he said to her,
"O Zayn al-Mawasif, hast thou a husband or not?" "I have no husband";
"And what is thy Faith?" "That of Al-Islam, and the religion of the
Best of Men." "Swear to me by Holy Law replete with signs and instances
that thou ownest the creed of the Best of Mankind." So she swore to him
and pronounced the profession of the Faith. Then asked the Kazi, "How
cometh it that thou wastest thy youth with this Jew?" And she answered,
"Know, O Kazi (may Allah prolong thy days in contentment and bring thee
to thy will and thine acts with benefits seal!), that my father left
me, after his death, fifteen thousand dinars, which he placed in the
hands of this Jew, that he might trade therewith and share his gains
with me, the head of the property[FN#360] being secured by legal
acknowledgment. When my father died, the Jew coveted me and sought me
in marriage of my mother, who said, 'How shall I drive her from her
Faith and cause to become a Jewess? By Allah, I will denounce thee to
the rulers!' He was affrighted at her words and taking the money, fled
to the town of Adan.[FN#361] When we heard where he was, we came to
Adan in search of him, and when we foregathered with him there, he told
us that he was trading in stuffs with the monies and buying goods upon
goods. So we believed him and he ceased not to cozen us till he cast us
into jail and fettered us and tortured us with exceeding sore torments;
and we are strangers in the land and have no helper save Almighty Allah
and our lord the Kazi." When the judge heard this tale he asked Hubub
the nurse, "Is this indeed thy lady and are ye strangers and is she
unmarried?", and she answered, "Yes." Quoth he, "Marry her to me and on
me be incumbent manumission of my slaves and fasting and pilgrimage and
almsgiving of all my good an I do you not justice on this dog and
punish him for that he hath done!" And quoth she, "I hear and obey."
Then said the Kazi, "Go, hearten thy heart and that of thy lady; and
to-morrow, Inshallah, I will send for this Miscreant and do you justice
on him and ye shall see prodigies of his punishment." So Hubub called
down blessings upon him and went forth from him with her mistress,
leaving him with passion and love-longing fraught and with distress and
desire distraught. Then they enquired for the house of the second Kazi
and presenting themselves before him, told him the same tale. On like
wise did the twain, mistress and maid with the third and the fourth,
till Zayn al-Mawasif had made her complaint to all the four Kazis, each
of whom fell in love with her and besought her to wed him, to which she
consented with a "Yes"; nor wist any one of the four that which had
happened to the others. All this passed without the knowledge of the
Jew, who spent the night in the house of the bridefeast. And when
morning morrowed, Hubub arose and gat ready her lady's richest raiment;
then she clad her therewith and presented herself with her before the
four Kazis in the court of justice. As soon as she entered, she veiled
her face and saluted the judges, who returned her salam and each and
every of them recognised her. One was writing, and the reed-pen dropped
from his hand, another was talking, and his tongue became tied, and a
third was reckoning and blundered in his reckoning; and they said to
her, "O admirable of attributes and singular among beauties! be not thy
heart other than hearty, for we will assuredly do thee justice and
bring thee to thy desire." So she called down blessings on them and
farewelled them and went her ways.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Fifty-ninth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Kazis
said to Zayn al-Mawasif, "O admirable of attributes and singular among
beauties! Be not thy heart other than hearty for our doing thy desire
and thy winning to thy will." So she called down blessings on them and
farewelled them and went her ways, the while her husband abode with his
friends at the marriage-banquet and knew naught of her doings. Then she
proceeded to beseech the notaries and scribes and the notables and the
Chiefs of Police to succour her against that unbelieving miscreant and
deliver her from the torment she suffered from him. Then she wept with
sore weeping and improvised these couplets,

"Rain showers of torrent tears, O Eyne and see * An they will
     quench the fires that flame in me:
After my robes of gold-embroidered silk * I wake to wear the
     frieze of monkery:
And all my raiment reeks of sulphur-fumes * When erst my shift
     shed musky fragrancy:
And hadst thou, O Masrúr, my case descried, * Ne'er hadst thou
     borne my shame and ignomy.
And eke Hubúb in iron chains is laid * By Miscreant who unknows
     God's Unity.
The creed of Jewry I renounce and home, * The Moslem's Faith
     accepting faithfully
Eastwards[FN#362] I prostrate self in fairest guise * Holding the
     only True Belief that be:
Masrúr! forget not love between us twain * And keep our vows and
     troth with goodly gree:
I've changed my faith for sake of thee, and I * For stress of
     love will cleave to secrecy:
So haste to us, an us in heart thou bear, * As noble spirit, nor
     as laggard fare."

After this she wrote a letter to Masrur, describing to him all that the
Jew had done with her from first to last and enclosed the verses
aforesaid. Then she folded the scroll and gave it to her maid Hubub,
saying, "Keep this in thy pocket, till we send it to Masrur." Upon
these doings lo and behold! in came the Jew and seeing them joyous,
said to them, "How cometh it that I find you merry? Say me, hath a
letter reached you from your bosom friend Masrur?" Replied Zayn
al-Mawasif, "We have no helper against thee save Allah, extolled and
exalted be He! He will deliver us from thy tyranny, and except thou
restore us to our birth-place and homestead, we will complain of thee
tomorrow to the Governor of this town and to the Kazi." Quoth he, "Who
struck off the shackles from your legs? But needs must I let make for
each of you fetters ten pounds in weight and go round about the city
with you." Replied Hubub, "All that thou purposest against us thou
shall fall into thyself, so it please Allah the Most High, by token
that thou hast exiled us from our homes, and to-morrow we shall stand,
we and thou, before the Governor of the city." They nighted on this
wise and next morning the Jew rose up in haste and went out to order
new shackles, whereupon Zayn al-Mawasif arose and repaired with her
women to the court-house, where she found the four Kazis and saluted
them. They all returned her salutation and the Kazi of Kazis said to
those about him, "Verily this damsel is lovely as the
Venus-star[FN#363] and all who see her love her and bow before her
beauty and loveliness." Then he despatched four sergeants, who were
Sharífs,[FN#364] saying, "Bring ye the criminal after abjectest
fashion." So, when the Jew returned with the shackles and found none in
the house, he was confounded; but, as he abode in perplexity, suddenly
up came the officers and laying hold of him beat him with a sore
beating and dragged him face downwards before the Kazi. When the judge
saw him, he cried out in his face and said to him, "Woe to thee, O foe
of God, is it come to such a pass with thee that thou doest the deed
thou hast done and bringest these women far from their country and
stealest their monies and wouldst make them Jews? How durst thou seek
to make miscreants of Moslems?" Answered the Jew, "O my lord this woman
is my wife." Now when the Kazis heard this, they all cried out, saying,
"Throw this hound on the ground and come down on his face with your
sandals and beat him with sore blows, for his offence is unpardonable."
So they pulled off his silken gear and clad him in his wife's raiment
of hair-cloth, after which they threw him down and plucked out his
beard and belaboured him about the face with sandals. Then they sat him
on an ass, face to crupper, arsi-versy, and making him take its tail in
his hand, paraded him round about the city, ringing the bell before him
in every street; after which they brought him back to the judges in
sorriest plight; and the four Kazis with one voice condemned him to
have his feet and hands cut off and lastly to be crucified. When the
accursed heard this sentence his sense forsook him and he was
confounded and said, "O my lords the Kazis, what would ye of me?" They
replied, "Say thou, 'This damsel is not my wife and the monies are her
monies, and I have transgressed against her and brought her far from
her country.'" So he confessed to this and the Kazis recorded his
confession in legal form and taking the money from him, gave it to Zayn
al-Mawasif, together with the document. Then she went away and all who
saw her were confounded at her beauty and loveliness, whilst each of
the Kazis looked for her committing herself to him. But, when she came
to her lodging, she made ready all matters she needed and waited till
night. Then she took what was light of load and weighty of worth, and
setting out with her maids under cover of the murks three days with
their nights fared on without stopping. Thus it was with her; but as
regards the Kazis they ordered the Jew to prison.—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixtieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Kazis ordered
the Jew to prison and on the morrow they looked for Zayn al-Mawasif
coming to them, they and their assessors; but she presented herself not
to any of them. Then said the Chief Kazi, "I wish to-day to make an
excursion without the town on business there." So he mounted his
she-mule and taking his page with him, went winding about the streets
of the town, searching its length and width for Zayn al-Mawasif, but
never finding her. On this errand he came upon the other three Kazis,
going about on the same, each deeming himself the only one to whom she
had given tryst. He asked them whither they were riding and why they
were going about the streets; when they told him their business,
whereby he saw that their plight was as his plight and their quest as
his quest. So they all four rode throughout the city, seeking her, but
could hit on no trace of her and returned to their houses, sick for
love, and lay down on the bed of langour. Presently the Chief Kazi
bethought himself of the blacksmith; so he sent for him and said to
him, "O blacksmith, knowest thou aught of the damsel whom thou didst
direct to me? By Allah, an thou discover her not to me, I will whack
thee with whips." Now when the smith heard this, he recited these

"She who my all of love by love of her hath won * Owns every
     Beauty and for others leaves she none:
She gazes, a gazelle; she breathes, fresh ambergris * She waves,
     a lake; she sways, a bough; she shines, a Sun."

Then said the blacksmith, "By Allah, O my lord, since she fared forth
from thy worshipful presence,[FN#366] I have not set eyes on her; no,
not once. Indeed she took possession of my heart and wits and all my
talk and thoughts are of her. I went to her lodging but found her not,
nor found I any who could give me news of her, and it is as if she had
dived into the depths of the sea or had ascended to the sky." Now when
the Kazi heard this, he groaned a groan, that his soul was like to
depart therefor, and he said, "By Allah, well it were had we never seen
her!" Then the smith went away, whilst the Kazi fell down on his bed
and became sick of langour for her sake, and on like wise fared it with
the other three Kazis and assessors. The mediciners paid them frequent
calls, but found in them no ailment requiring a leach: so the
city-notables went in to the Chief Kazi and saluting him, questioned
him of his case; whereupon he sighed and showed them that was in his
heart, reciting these couplets,

"Stint ye this blame; enough I suffer from Love's malady * Nor
     chide the Kazi frail who fain must deal to folk decree!
Who doth accuse my love let him for me find some excuse: * Nor
     blame; for lovers blameless are in lover-slavery!
I was a Kázi whom my Fate deigned aid with choicest aid * By writ
     and reed and raisčd me to wealth and high degree;
Till I was shot by sharpest shaft that knows nor leach nor cure *
     By Damsel's glance who came to spill my blood and murther
To me came she, a Moslemah and of her wrongs she 'plained * With
     lips that oped on Orient-pearls ranged fair and orderly:
I looked beneath her veil and saw a wending moon at full * Rising
     below the wings of Night engloomed with blackest blee:
A brightest favour and a mouth bedight with wondrous smiles; *
     Beauty had brought the loveliest garb and robed her
By Allah, ne'er beheld my eyes a face so ferly fair * Amid
     mankind whoever are, Arab or Ajamí.
My Fair! What promise didst thou make what time to me thou
     said'st * 'Whenas I promise I perform, O Kazi, faithfully.'
Such is my stead and such my case calamitous and dire * And ask
     me not, ye men of spunk, what dreadful teen I dree."

When he ended his verse he wept with sore weeping and sobbed one sob
and his spirit departed his body, which seeing they washed him and
shrouded him and prayed over him and buried him graving on his tomb
these couplets,

"Perfect were lover's qualities in him was brought a-morn, *
     Slain by his love and his beloved, to this untimely grave:
Kázi was he amid the folk, and aye 'twas his delight * To foster
     all the folk and keep a-sheath the Justice-glaive:
Love caused his doom and ne'er we saw among mankind before * The
     lord and master louting low before his thrallčd slave."

Then they committed him to the mercy of Allah and went away to the
second Kazi, in company with the physician, but found in him nor injury
nor ailment needing a leach. Accordingly they questioned him of his
case and what preoccupied him; so he told them what ailed him,
whereupon they blamed him and chid him for his predicament and he
answered them with these couplets,

"Blighted by her yet am I not to blame; * Struck by the dart at
     me her fair hand threw.
Unto me came a woman called Hubúb * Chiding the world from year
     to year anew:
And brought a damsel showing face that shamed * Full moon that
     sails through Night-tide's blackest hue,
She showed her beauties and she 'plained her plain * Which tears
     in torrents from her eyelids drew:
I to her words gave ear and gazed on her * Whenas with smiling
     lips she made me rue.
Then with my heart she fared where'er she fared * And left me
     pledged to sorrows soul subdue.
Such is my tale! So pity ye my case * And this my page with
     Kazi's gear indue."

Then he sobbed one sob and his soul fled his flesh; whereupon they gat
ready his funeral and buried him commending him to the mercy of Allah;
after which they repaired to the third Kazi and the fourth, and there
befel them the like of what befel their brethren.[FN#367] Furthermore,
they found the Assessors also sick for love of her, and indeed all who
saw her died of her love or, an they died not, lived on tortured with
the lowe of passion.— And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixty-first Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the city folk
found all the Kazis and the Assessors sick for love of her, and all who
saw her died lovesick or, an they died not, lived on tortured with the
lowe of passion for stress of pining to no purpose—Allah have mercy on
them one and all! Meanwhile Zayn al- Mawasif and her women drave on
with all diligence till they were far distant from the city and it so
fortuned that they came to a convent by the way, wherein dwelt a Prior
called Danis and forty monks.[FN#368] When the Prior saw her beauty, he
went out to her and invited her to alight, saying, "Rest with us ten
days and after wend your ways." So she and her damsels alighted and
entered the convent; and when Danis saw her beauty and loveliness, she
debauched his belief and he was seduced by her: wherefore he fell to
sending the monks, one after other with love-messages; but each who saw
her fell in love with her and sought her favours for himself, whilst
she excused and denied herself to them. But Danis ceased not his
importunities till he had dispatched all the forty, each one of whom
fell love-sick at first sight and plied her with blandishments never
even naming Danis; whilst she refused and rebuffed them with harsh
replies. At last when Danis's patience was at an end and his passion
was sore on him, he said in himself, "Verily, the sooth-sayer saith,
'Naught scratcheth my skin but my own nail and naught like my own feet
for mine errand may avail.'" So up he rose and made ready rich meats,
and it was the ninth day of her sojourn in the convent where she had
purposed only to rest. Then he carried them in to her and set them
before her, saying, "Bismillah, favour us by tasting the best of the
food at our command." So she put forth her hand, saying, "For the name
of Allah the Compassionating, the Compassionate!" and ate, she and her
handmaidens. When she had made an end of eating, he said to her, "O my
lady, I wish to recite to thee some verses." Quoth she, "Say on," and
he recited these couplets,

"Thou hast won my heart by cheek and eye of thee, * I'll praise
     for love in prose and poesy.
Wilt fly a lover, love-sick, love-distraught * Who strives in
     dreams some cure of love to see?
Leave me not fallen, passion-fooled, since I * For pine have left
     uncared the Monast'ry:
O Fairest, 'tis thy right to shed my blood, * So rue my case and
     hear the cry of me!"

When Zayn al-Mawasif heard his verses, she answered him with these two

"O who suest Union, ne'er hope such delight * Nor solicit my
     favours, O hapless wight!
Cease to hanker for what thou canst never have: * Next door are
     the greedy to sore despight."

Hearing this he returned to his place, pondering in himself and knowing
not how he should do in her affair, and passed the night in the
sorriest plight. But, as soon as the darkness was darkest Zayn
al-Mawasif arose and said to her handmaids, "Come, let us away, for we
cannot avail against forty men, monks, each of whom requireth me for
himself." Quoth they, "Right willingly!" So they mounted their beasts
and issued forth the convent gate,— Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixty-second Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Zayn
al-Mawasif and her handmaids issued forth the convent gate and, under
favour of the night, rode on till they overtook a caravan, with which
they mingled and found it came from the city of 'Adan wherein the lady
had dwelt. Presently, Zayn al-Mawasif heard the people of the caravan
discoursing of her own case and telling how the Kazis and Assessors
were dead of love for her and how the townsfolk had appointed in their
stead others who released her husband from prison. Whereupon she turned
to her maids and asked them, "Heard ye that?"; and Hubub answered, "If
the monks were ravished with love of thee, whose belief it is that
shunning women is worship, how should it be with the Kazis, who hold
that there is no monkery in Al-Islam? But let us make our way to our
own country, whilst our affair is yet hidden." So they drave on with
all diligence. Such was their case; but as regards the monks, on the
morrow, as soon as it was day they repaired to Zayn al-Mawasif's
lodging, to salute her, but found the place empty, and their hearts
sickened within them. So the first monk rent his raiment and improvised
these couplets,

"Ho ye, my friends, draw near, for I forthright * From you
     depart, since parting is my lot:
My vitals suffer pangs o' fiery love; * Flames of desire in heart
     burn high and hot,
For sake of fairest girl who sought our land * Whose charms th'
     horizon's full moon evens not.
She fared and left me victimed by her love * And slain by shaft
     those lids death-dealing shot."

Then another monk recited the following couplets,

"O ye who with my vitals fled, have ruth * On this unhappy: haste
     ye homeward-bound:
They fared, and fared fair Peace on farthest track * Yet lingers
     in mine ear that sweetest sound:
Fared far, and far their fane; would Heaven I saw Their shade in
     vision float my couch around:
And when they went wi' them they bore my heart * And in my
     tear-floods all of me left drowned."

A third monk followed with these extempore lines,

"Throne you on highmost stead, heart, ears and sight * Your
     wone's my heart; mine all's your dwelling-site:
Sweeter than honey is your name a-lip, * Running, as 'neath my
     ribs runs vital sprite:
For Love hath made me as a tooth-pick[FN#369] lean * And drowned
     in tears of sorrow and despight:
Let me but see you in my sleep, belike * Shall clear my cheeks of
     tears that lovely sight."

Then a fourth recited the following couplets,

"Dumb is my tongue and scant my speech for thee * And Love the
     direst torture gars me dree:
O thou full Moon, whose place is highest Heaven, * For thee but
     double pine and pain in me."

And a fifth these,[FN#370]

"I love a moon of comely shapely form * Whose slender waist hath
     title to complain:
Whose lip-dews rival must and long-kept wine; * Whose heavy
     haunches haunt the minds of men:
My heart each morning burns with pain and pine * And the
     night-talkers note I'm passion-slain;
While down my cheeks carnelian-like the tears * Of rosy red
     shower down like railing rain."

And a sixth the following,

"O thou who shunnest him thy love misled! * O Branch of Bán, O
     star of highmost stead!
To thee of pine and passion I complain, * O thou who fired me
     with cheeks rosy-red.
Did e'er such lover lose his soul for thee, * Or from prostration
     and from prayers fled?"

And a seventh these,

"He seized my heart and freed my tears to flow * Brought strength
     to Love and bade my Patience go.
His charms are sweet as bitter his disdain; * And shafts of love
     his suitors overthrow.
Stint blame, O blamer, and for past repent * None will believe
     thee who dost Love unknow!"

And on like wise all the rest of the monks shed tears and repeated
verses. As for Danis, the Prior, weeping and wailing redoubled on him,
for that he found no way to her enjoyment, and he chanted the following

"My patience failed me when my lover went * And fled that day
     mine aim and best intent.
O Guide o' litters lead their camels fair, * Haply some day
     they'll deign with me to tent!
On parting-day Sleep parted from my lids * And grew my grieving
     and my joy was shent.
I moan to Allah what for Love I dree'd * My wasted body and my
     forces spent."

Then, despairing of her, they took counsel together and with one mind
agreed to fashion her image and set it up with them, and applied
themselves to this till there came to them the Destroyer of delights
and Severer of societies. Meanwhile, Zayn al-Mawasif fared on, without
ceasing, to find her lover Masrur, till she reached her own house. She
opened the doors, and entered; then she sent to her sister Nasim, who
rejoiced with exceeding joy at the news of her return and brought her
the furniture and precious stuffs left in her charge. So she furnished
the house and dressed it, hanging the curtains over the doors and
burning aloes-wood and musk and ambergris and other essences till the
whole place reeked with the most delightful perfumes: after which the
Adornment of Qualities donned her finest dress and decorations and sat
talking with her maids, whom she had left behind when journeying, and
related to them all that had befallen her first and last. Then she
turned to Hubub and giving her dirhams, bade her fetch them something
to eat. So she brought meat and drink and when they had made an end of
eating and drinking,[FN#372] Zayn al-Mawasif bade Hubub go and see
where Masrur was and how it fared with him. Now he knew not of her
return; but abode with concern overcast and sorrow might not be
overpast;—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Zayn
al-Mawasif entered her house she was met by her sister Nasim who
brought her the furniture and stuffs wherewith she furnished the place;
and then she donned her finest dress. But Masrur knew naught of her
return and abode with concern overcast and sorrow might not be
overpast; no peace prevailed with him nor was patience possible to him.
Whenas pine and passion, desire and distraction waxed on him, he would
solace himself by reciting verse and go to the house and set him its
walls to buss. It chanced that he went out that day to the place where
he had parted from his mistress and repeated this rare song,

"My wrongs hide I, withal they show to sight; * And now mine eyes
     from sleep to wake are dight.
I cry when melancholy tries my sprite * Last not, O world nor
     work more despight;
          Lo hangs my soul 'twixt hardship and affright.
Were the Sultan hight Love but fair to me, * Slumber mine eyes'
     companion were to me,
My Lords, some little mercy spare to me, * Chief of my tribe: be
     debonnair to me,
          Whom Love cast down, erst rich now pauper-wight!

Censors may blame thee but I look beyond * Mine ears I stop and
     leave their lies unconned
And keep my pact wi' those I love so fond: * They say, 'Thou
     lov'st a runaway!' I respond,
          'Whist! whenas Fate descends she blinds the sight!'"

Then he returned to his lodging and sat there weeping, till sleep
overcame him, when he saw in a dream as if Zayn al-Mawasif were come to
the house, and awoke in tears. So he set off to go thither, improvising
these couplets,

"Shall I be consoled when Love hath mastered the secret of me *
     And my heart is aglow with more than the charcoal's ardency?
I love her whose absence I plain before Allah for parting-stower
     * And the shifts of the days and doom which allotted me
When shall our meeting be, O wish O' my heart and will? * O
     favour of fullest Moon, when shall we Re-union see?"

As he made an end of his recitation, he found himself walking adown in
Zayn al-Mawasif's street and smelt the sweet savour of the pastiles
wherewithal she had incensed the house; wherefore his vitals fluttered
and his heart was like to leave his breast and desire flamed up in him
and distraction redoubled upon him; when lo, and behold! Hubub, on her
way to do her lady's errand suddenly appeared at the head of the street
and he rejoiced with joy exceeding. When she saw him, she went up to
him and saluting him, gave him the glad news of her mistress's return,
saying, "She hath sent me to bid thee to her." Whereat he was glad
indeed, with gladness naught could exceed; and she took him and
returned with him to the house. When Zayn al-Mawasif saw him, she came
down to him from the couch and kissed him and he kissed her and she
embraced him and he embraced her; nor did they leave kissing and
embracing till both swooned away for stress of affection and
separation. They lay a long while senseless, and when they revived,
Zayn al-Mawasif bade Hubub fetch her a gugglet of sherbet of sugar and
another of sherbet of lemons. So she brought what she desired and they
sat eating and drinking nor ceased before nightfall, when they fell to
recalling all that had befallen them from commencement to conclusion.
Then she acquainted him with her return to Al-Islam, whereat he
rejoiced and he also became a Moslem. On like wise did her women, and
they all repented to Allah Almighty of their infidelity. On the morrow
she made send for the Kazi and the witnesses and told them that she was
a widow and had completed the purification-period and was minded to
marry Masrur. So they drew up the wedding-contract between them and
they abode in all delight of life. Meanwhile, the Jew, when the people
of Adan released him from prison, set out homewards and fared on nor
ceased faring till he came within three days' journey of the city. Now
as soon as Zayn al-Mawasif heard of his coming she called for her
handmaid Hubub and said to her, "Go to the Jews' burial-place and there
dig a grave and plant on it sweet basil and jessamine and sprinkle
water thereabout. If the Jew come and ask thee of me, answer, 'My
mistress died twenty days ago of chagrin on thine account.' If he say,
show me her tomb, take him to the grave and after weeping over it and
making moan and lament before him, contrive to cast him therein and
bury him alive."[FN#373] And Hubub answered, "I hear and I obey." Then
they laid up the furniture in the store closets, and Zayn al-Mawasif
removed to Masrur's lodging, where he and she abode eating and
drinking, till the three days were past; at the end of which the Jew
arrived and knocked at the door of his house. Quoth Hubub, "Who's at
the door?"; and quoth he, "Thy master." So she opened to him and he saw
the tears railing down her cheeks and said, "What aileth thee to weep
and where is thy mistress?" She replied, "My mistress is dead of
chagrin on thine account." When he heard this, he was perplexed and
wept with sore weeping and presently said, "O Hubub, where is her
tomb?" So she carried him to the Jews' burial-ground and showed him the
grave she had dug; whereupon he shed bitter tears and recited this pair
of couplets,[FN#374]

"Two things there are, for which if eyes wept tear on tear * Of
     blood, till they were like indeed to disappear,
They never could fulfil the Tithe of all their due: * And these
     are prime of youth and loss of loveling dear."

Then he wept again with bitter tears and recited these also,

"Alack and Alas! Patience taketh flight: * And from parting of
     friend to sore death I'm dight:
O how woeful this farness from dear one, and oh * How my heart is
     rent by mine own unright!
Would Heaven my secret I erst had kept * Nor had told the pangs
     and my liver-blight:
I lived in all solace and joyance of life * Till she left and
     left me in piteous plight:
O Zayn al-Mawasif, I would there were * No parting departing my
     frame and sprite:
I repent me for troth-breach and blame my guilt * Of unruth to
     her whereon hopes I built."

When he had made an end of this verse, he wept and groaned and lamented
till he fell down a-swoon, whereupon Hubub made haste to drag him to
the grave and throw him in, whilst he was insensible yet quick withal.
Then she stopped up the grave on him and returning to her mistress
acquainted her with what had passed, whereat she rejoiced with
exceeding joy and recited these two couplets,

"The world sware that for ever 'twould gar me grieve: *Tis false,
     O world, so thine oath retrieve[FN#375]!
The blamer is dead and my love's in my arms: * Rise to herald of
     joys and tuck high thy sleeve[FN#376]!"

Then she and Masrur abode each with other in eating and drinking and
sport and pleasure and good cheer, till there came to them the
Destroyer of delights and Sunderer of societies and Slayer of sons and
daughters. And I have also heard tell the following tale of


There was once in days of yore and in ages and times long gone before
in the parts of Cairo, a merchant named Táj al-Dín who was of the most
considerable of the merchants and of the chiefs of the freeborn. But he
was given to travelling everywhere and loved to fare over wild and
wold, waterless lowland and stony waste, and to journey to the isles of
the seas, in quest of dirhams and dinars: wherefore he had in his time
encountered dangers and suffered duresse of the way such as would
grizzle little children and turn their black hair grey. He was
possessed of black slaves and Mamelukes, Eunuchs and concubines, and
was the wealthiest of the merchants of his time and the goodliest of
them in speech, owning horses and mules and Bactrian camels and
dromedaries; sacks great and small of size; goods and merchandise and
stuffs such as muslins of Hums, silks and brocades of Ba'allak, cotton
of Mery, stuffs of India, gauzes of Baghdad, burnouses of Moorland and
Turkish white slaves and Abyssinian castratos and Grecian girls and
Egyptian boys; and the coverings of his bales were silk with gold
purfled fair, for he was wealthy beyond compare. Furthermore he was
rare of comeliness, accomplished in goodliness, and gracious in his
kindliness, even as one of his describers doth thus express,

"A merchant I spied whose lovers * Were fighting in furious
Quoth he, 'Why this turmoil of people?' * Quoth I, 'Trader, for
     those fine eyes!'"

And saith another in his praise and saith well enough to accomplish the
wish of him,

"Came a merchant to pay us a visit * Whose glance did my heart
Quoth he, 'What surprised thee so?' * Quoth I, 'Trader, 'twas
     those fine eyes.'"

Now that merchant had a son called Ali Nur al-Din, as he were the full
moon whenas it meeteth the sight on its fourteenth night, a marvel of
beauty and loveliness, a model of form and symmetrical grace, who was
sitting one day as was his wont, in his father's shop, selling and
buying, giving and taking when the sons of the merchants girt him
around and he was amongst them as moon among stars, with brow
flower-white and cheeks of rosy light in down the tenderest dight, and
body like alabaster-bright even as saith of him the poet,

"'Describe me!' a fair one said. * Said I, 'Thou art Beauty's
And, speaking briefest speech, * 'All charms in thee are seen.'"

And as saith of him one of his describers,

"His mole upon plain of cheek is like * Ambergrís-crumb on marble
And his glances likest the sword proclaim * To all Love's rebels
     'The Lord is Great!'"[FN#378]

The young merchants invited him saying, "O my lord Nur al-Din, we wish
thee to go this day a-pleasuring with us in such a garden." And he
answered, "Wait till I consult my parent, for I cannot go without his
consent." As they were talking, behold, up came Taj al-Din, and his son
looked at him and said, "O father mine, the sons of the merchants have
invited me to wend a-pleasuring with them in such a garden. Dost thou
grant me leave to go?" His father replied, "Yes, O my son, fare with
them;" and gave him somewhat of money. So the young men mounted their
mules and asses and Nur al-Din mounted a she-mule and rode with them to
a garden, wherein was all that soul desireth and that eye charmeth. It
was high of walls which from broad base were seen to rise; and it had a
gateway vault-wise with a portico like a saloon and a door azure as the
skies, as it were one of the gates of Paradise: the name of the
door-keeper was Rizwán,[FN#379] and over the gate were trained an
hundred trellises which grapes overran; and these were of various dyes,
the red like coralline, the black like the snouts of Súdán[FN#380]-men
and the white like egg of the pigeon-hen. And in it peach and
pomegranate were shown and pear, apricot and pomegranate were grown and
fruits with and without stone hanging in clusters or alone,—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixty-fourth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
sons of the merchants entered the vergier, they found therein all that
soul desireth or eye charmeth, grapes of many hues grown, hanging in
bunches or alone, even as saith of them the poet,

"Grapes tasting with the taste of wine * Whose coats like
     blackest Raven's shine:
Their sheen, amid the leafage shows, * Like women's fingers
     henna'd fine."

And as saith another on the same theme,

"Grape-bunches likest as they sway * A-stalk, my body frail and
Honey and water thus in jar, * When sourness past, make

Then they entered the arbour of the garden and saw there Rizwan the
gate-keeper sitting, as he were Rizwan the Paradise-guardian, and on
the door were written these lines,

"Garth Heaven-watered wherein clusters waved * On boughs which
     full of sap to bend were fain:
And, when the branches danced on Zephyr's palm, * The Pleiads
     shower'd as gifts[FN#381] fresh pearls for rain."

And within the arbour were written these two couplets,

"Come with us, friend, and enter thou * This garth that cleanses
     rust of grief:
Over their skirts the Zephyrs trip[FN#382] * And flowers in sleeve
     to laugh are lief."[FN#383]

So they entered and found all manner fruits in view and birds of every
kind and hue, such as ringdove, nightingale and curlew; and the turtle
and the cushat sang their love lays on the sprays. Therein were rills
that ran with limpid wave and flowers suave; and bloom for whose
perfume we crave and it was even as saith of it the poet in these two

"The Zephyr breatheth o'er its branches, like * Fair girls that
     trip as in fair skirts they pace:
Its rills resemble swords in hands of knights * Drawn from the
     scabbard and containing-case."[FN#384]

And again as singeth the songster,

"The streamlet swings by branchy wood and aye * Joys in its
     breast those beauties to display;
And Zephyr noting this, for jealousy * Hastens and bends the
     branches other way."

On the trees of the garden were all manner fruits, each in two sorts,
and amongst them the pomegranate, as it were a ball of
silver-dross,[FN#385] whereof saith the poet and saith right well,

"Granados of finest skin, like the breasts * Of maid
     firm-standing in sight of male;
When I strip the skin, they at once display * The rubies
     compelling all sense to quail."

And even as quoth another bard,

"Close prest appear to him who views th' inside * Red rubies in
     brocaded skirts bedight:
Granado I compare with marble dome * Or virgin's breasts
     delighting every sight:
Therein is cure for every ill as e'en * Left an Hadís the Prophet
     pure of sprite;
And Allah (glorify His name) eke deigned * A noble say in Holy
     Book indite.[FN#386]

The apples were the sugared and the musky and the Dámáni, amazing the
beholder, whereof saith Hassan the poet,

"Apple which joins hues twain, and brings to mind * The cheek of
     lover and beloved combined:
Two wondrous opposites on branch they show * This dark[FN#387]
     and that with hue incarnadined
The twain embraced when spied the spy and turned * This red, that
     yellow for the shame designed."[FN#388]

There also were apricots of various kinds, almond and camphor and
Jíláni and 'Antábi,[FN#389] wereof saith the poet,

"And Almond-apricot suggesting swain * Whose lover's visit all
     his wits hath ta'en.
Enough of love-sick lovers' plight it shows * Of face deep yellow
     and heart torn in twain."[FN#390]

And saith another and saith well,

"Look at that Apricot whose bloom contains * Gardens with
     brightness gladding all men's eyne:
Like stars the blossoms sparkle when the boughs * Are clad in
     foliage dight with sheen and shine."

There likewise were plums and cherries and grapes, that the sick of all
diseases assain and do away giddiness and yellow choler from the brain;
and figs the branches between, varicoloured red and green, amazing
sight and sense, even as saith the poet,

"'Tis as the Figs with clear white skins outthrown * By foliaged
     trees, athwart whose green they peep,
Were sons of Roum that guard the palace-roof * When shades close
     in and night-long ward they keep."[FN#391]

And saith another and saith well,

"Welcome[FN#392] the Fig! To us it comes * Ordered in handsome
     plates they bring:
Likest a Sufrah[FN#393]-cloth we draw * To shape of bag without a

And how well saith a third,

"Give me the Fig sweet-flavoured, beauty-clad, * Whose inner
     beauties rival outer sheen:
And when it fruits thou tastest it to find * Chamomile's scent
     and Sugar's saccharine:
And eke it favoureth on platters poured * Puff-balls of silken
     thread and sendal green."

And how excellent is the saying of one of them,

"Quoth they (and I had trained my taste thereto * Nor cared for
     other fruits whereby they swore),
'Why lovest so the Fig?' whereto quoth I * 'Some men love Fig and
     others Sycamore.[FN#394]'"

And are yet goodlier those of another,

"Pleaseth me more the fig than every fruit * When ripe and
     hanging from the sheeny bough;
Like Devotee who, when the clouds pour rain, * Sheds tears and
     Allah's power doth avow."

And in that garth were also pears of various kinds Sinaďtic,[FN#395]
Aleppine and Grecian growing in clusters and alone, parcel green and
parcel golden.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixty-fifth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
merchants' sons went down into the garth they saw therein all the
fruits we mentioned and found pears Sinaďtic, Aleppine and Grecian of
every hue, which here clustering there single grew, parcel green and
parcel yellow to the gazer a marvel-view, as saith of them the poet,

"With thee that Pear agree, whose hue a-morn * Is hue of hapless
     lover yellow pale;
Like virgin cloistered strait in strong Harím * Whose face like
     racing steed outstrips the veil."

And Sultani[FN#396] peaches of shades varied, yellow and red, whereof
saith the poet,

"Like Peach in vergier growing * And sheen of Andam[FN#397]
Whose balls of yellow gold * Are dyed with blood-gouts flowing."

There were also green almonds of passing sweetness, resembling the
cabbage[FN#398] of the palm-tree, with their kernels within three
tunics lurking of the Munificent King's handiworking, even as is said
of them,

"Three coats yon freshest form endue * God's work of varied shape
     and hue:
Hardness surrounds it night and day; * Prisoning without a sin to

And as well saith another,

"Seest not that Almond plucked by hand * Of man from bough where
     wont to dwell:
Peeling it shows the heart within * As union-pearl in oyster-

And as saith a third better than he,

"How good is Almond green I view! * The smallest fills the hand
     of you:
Its nap is as the down upon * The cheeks where yet no beardlet
Its kernels in the shell are seen, * Or bachelors or married two,
As pearls they were of lucent white * Casčd and lapped in
     Jasper's hue."

And as saith yet another and saith well,

"Mine eyes ne'er looked on aught the Almond like * For charms,
     when blossoms[FN#399] in the Prime show bright:
Its head to hoariness of age inclines * The while its cheek by
     youth's fresh down is dight."

And jujube-plums of various colours, grown in clusters and alone
whereof saith one, describing them,

"Look at the Lote-tree, note on boughs arrayed * Like goodly
     apricots on reed-strown floor,[FN#400]
Their morning-hue to viewer's eye is like * Cascavels[FN#401]
     cast of purest golden ore."

And as saith another and saith right well,

"The Jujube-tree each Day * Robeth in bright array.
As though each pome thereon * Would self to sight display.
Like falcon-bell of gold * Swinging from every spray."

And in that garth grew blood oranges, as they were the
Khaulanján,[FN#402] whereof quoth the enamoured poet,[FN#403]

"Red fruits that fill the hand, and shine with sheen * Of fire,
     albe the scarf-skin's white as snow.
'Tis marvel snow on fire doth never melt * And, stranger still,
     ne'er burns this living lowe!"

And quoth another and quoth well,

"And trees of Orange fruiting ferly fair * To those who straitest
     have their charms surveyed;
Like cheeks of women who their forms have decked * For holiday in
     robes of gold brocade."

And yet another as well,

"Like are the Orange-hills[FN#404] when Zephyr breathes * Swaying
     the boughs and spray with airy grace,
Her cheeks that glow with lovely light when met * At greeting-
     tide by cheeks of other face."

And a fourth as fairly,

"And fairest Fawn, we said to him 'Portray * This garth and
     oranges thine eyes survey:'
And he, 'Your garden favoureth my face * Who gathereth orange
     gathereth fire alway.'"

In that garden too grew citrons, in colour as virgin gold, hanging down
from on high and dangling among the branches, as they were ingots of
growing gold;[FN#405] and saith thereof the 'namoured poet,

"Hast seen a Citron-copse so weighed adown * Thou fearest bending
     roll their fruit on mould;
And seemed, when Zephyr passed athwart the tree * Its branches
     hung with bells of purest gold?"

And shaddocks,[FN#406] that among their boughs hung laden as though
each were the breast of a gazelle-like maiden, contenting the most
longing wight, as saith of them the poet and saith aright,

"And Shaddock mid the garden-paths, on bough * Freshest like
     fairest damsel met my sight;
And to the blowing of the breeze it bent * Like golden ball to
     bat of chrysolite."

And the lime sweet of scent, which resembleth a hen's egg, but its
yellowness ornamenteth its ripe fruit, and its fragrance hearteneth him
who plucketh it, as saith the poet who singeth it,

"Seest not the Lemon, when it taketh form, * Catch rays of light
     and all to gaze constrain;
Like egg of pullet which the huckster's hand * Adorneth dyeing
     with the saffron-stain?"

Moreover in this garden were all manner of other fruits and
sweet-scented herbs and plants and fragrant flowers, such as jessamine
and henna and water-lilies[FN#407] and spikenard[FN#408] and roses of
every kind and plantain[FN#409] and myrtle and so forth; and indeed it
was without compare, seeming as it were a piece of Paradise to whoso
beheld it. If a sick man entered it, he came forth from it like a
raging lion, and tongue availeth not to its description, by reason of
that which was therein of wonders and rarities which are not found but
in Heaven: and how should it be otherwise when its doorkeeper's name
was Rizwan? Though widely different were the stations of those twain!
Now when the sons of the merchants had walked about gazing at the
garden after taking their pleasure therein, they say down in one of its
pavilions and seated Nur al-Din in their midst.—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixty-sixth Night,

She resume, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the sons
of the merchants sat down in the pavilion they seated Nur al-Din in
their midst on a rug of gold-purfled leather of Al-Táif,[FN#410]
leaning on a pillow[FN#411] of minever, stuffed with ostrich down. And
they gave him a fan of ostrich feathers, whereon were written these two

"A fan whose breath is fraught with fragrant scent; * Minding of
     happy days and times forspent,
Wafting at every time its perfumed air * O'er face of noble youth
     on honour bent."

Then they laid by their turbands and outer clothes and sat talking and
chatting and inducing one another to discourse, while they all kept
their eyes fixed on Nur al-Din and gazed on his beauteous form. After
the sitting had lasted an hour or so, up came a slave with a tray on
his head, wherein were platters of china and crystal containing viands
of all sorts (for one of the youths had so charged his people before
coming to the garden); and the meats were of whatever walketh earth or
wingeth air or swimmeth waters, such as Katá-grouse and fat quails and
pigeon-poults and mutton and chickens and the delicatest fish. So, the
tray being sat before them, they fell to and ate their fill; and when
they had made an end of eating, they rose from meat and washed their
hands with pure water and musk-scented soap, and dried them with napery
embroidered in silk and bugles; but to Nur al-Din they brought a napkin
laced with red gold whereon he wiped his hands. Then coffee[FN#412] was
served up and each drank what he would, after which they sat talking,
till presently the garden-keeper who was young went away and returning
with a basket full of roses, said to them, "What say ye, O my masters,
to flowers?" Quoth one of them, "There is no harm in them,[FN#413]
especially roses, which are not to be resisted." Answered the gardener,
"'Tis well, but it is of our wont not to give roses but in exchange for
pleasant converse; so whoever would take aught thereof, let him recite
some verses suitable to the situation." Now they were ten sons of
merchants of whom one said, "Agreed: give me thereof and I will recite
thee somewhat of verse apt to the case." Accordingly the gardener gave
him a bunch of roses[FN#414] which he took and at once improvised these
three couplets,

"The Rose in highest stead I rate * For that her charms ne'er
All fragrant flow'rs be troops to her * Their general of high
Where she is not they boast and vaunt; * But, when she comes,
     they stint their prate."

Then the gardener gave a bunch to another and he recited these two

"Take, O my lord, to thee the Rose * Recalling scent by mush be
Like virginette by lover eyed * Who with her sleeves[FN#415]
     enveileth head."

Then he gave a bunch to a third who recited these two couplets,

"Choice Rose that gladdens heart to see her sight; * Of Nadd
     recalling fragrance exquisite.
The branchlets clip her in her leaves for joy, * Like kiss of
     lips that never spake in spite."

Then he gave a bunch to a fourth and he recited these two couplets,

"Seest not that rosery where Rose a-flowering displays * Mounted
     upon her steed of stalk those marvels manifold?
As though the bud were ruby-stone and girded all around * With
     chrysolite and held within a little hoard of gold."

Then he gave a posy to a fifth and he recited these two couplets,

"Wands of green chrysolite bare issue, which * Were fruits like
     ingots of the growing gold.[FN#416]
And drops, a dropping from its leaves, were like * The tears my
     languorous eyelids railed and rolled."

Then he gave a sixth a bunch and he recited these two couplets,

"O Rose, thou rare of charms that dost contain * All gifts and
     Allah's secrets singular,
Thou'rt like the loved one's cheek where lover fond * And fain of
     Union sticks the gold dinar."[FN#417]

Then he gave a bunch to a seventh and he recited these two couplets,

"To Rose quoth I, 'What gars thy thorns to be put forth * For all
     who touch thee cruellest injury?'
Quoth she, 'These flowery troops are troops of me * Who be their
     lord with spines for armoury.'"

And he gave an eighth a bunch and he recited these two couplets,

"Allah save the Rose which yellows a-morn * Florid, vivid and
     likest the nugget-ore;
And bless the fair sprays that displayed such flowers * And mimic
     suns gold-begilded bore."

Then he gave a bunch to a ninth and he recited these two couplets,

"The bushes of golden-hued Rose excite * In the love-sick lover
     joys manifold:
'Tis a marvel shrub watered every day * With silvern lymph and it
     fruiteth gold."

Then he gave a bunch of roses to the tenth and last and he recited
these two couplets,

"Seest not how the hosts of the Rose display * Red hues and
     yellow in rosy field?
I compare the Rose and her arming thorn * To emerald lance
     piercing golden shield."

And whilst each one hent bunch in hand, the gardener brought the
wine-service and setting it before them, on a tray of porcelain
arabesqued with red gold, recited these two couplets,

"Dawn heralds day-light: so wine pass round, * Old wine, fooling
     sage till his wits he tyne:
Wot I not for its purest clarity * An 'tis wine in cup or 'tis
     cup in wine."[FN#418]

Then the gardener filled and drank and the cup went round, till it came
to Nur al-Din's turn, whereupon the man filled and handed it to him;
but he said, "This thing I wot it not nor have I ever drunken thereof,
for therein is great offence and the Lord of All-might hath forbidden
it in His Book." Answered the gardener, "O my Lord Nur al-Din, an thou
forbear to drink only by reason of the sin, verily Allah (extolled and
exalted be He!) is bountiful, of sufferance great, forgiving and
compassionate and pardoneth the mortalest sins: His mercy embraceth all
things, Allah's ruth be upon the poet who saith,

'Be as thou wilt, for Allah is bountiful * And when thou sinnest
     feel thou naught alarm:
But 'ware of twofold sins nor ever dare * To give God partner or
     mankind to harm.'"

Then quoth one of the sons of the merchants, "My life on thee, O my
lord Nur al-Din, drink of this cup!" And another conjured him by the
oath of divorce and yet another stood up persistently before him, till
he was ashamed and taking the cup from the gardener, drank a draught,
but spat it out again, crying, "'Tis bitter." Said the young gardener,
"O my lord Nur al-Din, knowest thou not that sweets taken by way of
medicine are bitter?  Were this not bitter, 'twould lack of the
manifold virtues it possesseth; amongst which are that it digesteth
food and disperseth cark and care and dispelleth flatulence and
clarifieth the blood and cleareth the complexion and quickeneth the
body and hearteneth the hen-hearted and fortifieth the sexual power in
man; but to name all its virtues would be tedious. Quoth one of the

'We'll drink and Allah pardon sinners all * And cure of ills by
     sucking cups I'll find:
Nor aught the sin deceives me; yet said He * 'In it there be
     advantage[FN#419] to mankind.'"

Then he sprang up without stay or delay and opened one of the cupboards
in the pavilion and taking out a loaf of refined sugar, broke off a
great slice which he put into Nur al-Din's cup, saying, "O my lord, an
thou fear to drink wine, because of its bitterness, drink now, for 'tis
sweet." So he took the cup and emptied it: whereupon one of his
comrades filled him another, saying, "O my lord Nur al-Din, I am thy
slave," and another did the like, saying, "I am one of thy servants,"
and a third said, "For my sake!" and a fourth, "Allah upon thee, O my
lord Nur al-Din, heal my heart!" And so they ceased not plying him with
wine, each and every of the ten sons of merchants till they had made
him drink a total of ten cups. Now Nur al-Din's body was virgin of
wine-bibbing, or never in all his life had he drunken vine-juice till
that hour, wherefore its fumes wrought in his brain and drunkenness was
stark upon him and he stood up (and indeed his tongue was thick and his
speech stammering) and said, "O company, by Allah, ye are fair and your
speech is goodly and your place pleasant; but there needeth hearing of
sweet music; for drink without melody lacks the chief of its
essentiality, even as saith the poet,

'Pass round the cup to the old and the young man, too, And take
     the bowl from the hand of the shining moon,[FN#420]
But without music, I charge you, forbear to drink; I see even
     horses drink to a whistled tune.'"[FN#421]

Therewith up sprang the gardener lad and mounting one of the young
men's mules, was absent awhile, after which he returned with a Cairene
girl, as she were a sheep's tail, fat and delicate, or an ingot of pure
silvern ore or a dinar on a porcelain plate or a gazelle in the wold
forlore. She had a face that put to shame the shining sun and eyes
Babylonian[FN#422] and brows like bows bended and cheeks rose-painted
and teeth pearly-hued and lips sugared and glances languishing and
breast ivory white and body slender and slight, full of folds and with
dimples dight and hips like pillows stuffed and thighs like columns of
Syrian stone, and between them what was something like a sachet of
spices in wrapper swathed. Quoth the poet of her in these couplets,

"Had she shown her shape to idolaters' sight, * They would gaze
     on her face and their gods detest:
And if in the East to a monk she'd show'd, * He'd quit Eastern
     posture and bow to West.[FN#423]
An she crached in the sea and the briniest sea * Her lips would
     give it the sweetest zest."

And quoth another in these couplets,

"Brighter than Moon at full with kohl'd eyes she came * Like Doe,
     on chasing whelps of Lioness intent:
Her night of murky locks lets fall a tent on her * A tent of
     hair[FN#424] that lacks no pegs to hold the tent;
And roses lighting up her roseate cheeks are fed * By hearts and
     livers flowing fire for languishment:
An 'spied her all the Age's Fair to her they'd rise *
     Humbly,[FN#425] and cry 'The meed belongs to precedent!'"

And how well saith a third bard,[FN#426]

"Three things for ever hinder her to visit us, for fear Of the
     intriguing spy and eke the rancorous envier;
Her forehead's lustre and the sound of all her ornaments And the
     sweet scent her creases hold of ambergris and myrrh.
Grant with the border of her sleeve she hide her brow and doff
     Her ornaments, how shall she do her scent away from her?"

She was like the moon when at fullest on its fourteenth night, and was
clad in a garment of blue, with a veil of green, over brow flower-white
that all wits amazed and those of understanding amated.—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the gardener
brought a girl whom we have described possessed of the utmost beauty
and loveliness and fine stature and symmetrical grace as it were she
the poet signified when he said,[FN#427]

"She came apparelled in a vest of blue,
That mocked the skies and shamed their azure hue;
I thought thus clad she burst upon my sight,
Like summer moonshine on a wintry night."

And how goodly is the saying of another and how excellent,

"She came thick veiled, and cried I, 'O display * That face like
     full moon bright with pure-white ray.'
Quoth she, 'I fear disgrace,' quoth I, 'Cut short * This talk, no
     shift of days thy thoughts affray.'
Whereat she raised her veil from fairest face * And crystal spray
     on gems began to stray:
And I forsooth was fain to kiss her cheek, * Lest she complain of
     me on Judgment-Day.
And at such tide before the Lord on High * We first of lovers
     were redress to pray:
So 'Lord, prolong this reckoning and review' * (Prayed I) 'that
     longer I may sight my may.'"

Then said the young gardener to her, "Know thou, O lady of the fair,
brighter than any constellation which illumineth air we sought, in
bringing thee hither naught but that thou shouldst entertain with
converse this comely youth, my lord Nur al-Din, for he hath come to
this place only this day." And the girl replied, "Would thou hadst told
me, that I might have brought what I have with me!" Rejoined the
gardener, "O my lady, I will go and fetch it to thee." "As thou wilt,"
said she: and he, "Give me a token." So she gave him a kerchief and he
fared forth in haste and returned after awhile, bearing a green satin
bag with slings of gold. The girl took the bag from him and opening it
shook it, whereupon there fell thereout two-and-thirty pieces of wood,
which she fitted one into other, male into female and female into
male[FN#428] till they became a polished lute of Indian workmanship.
Then she uncovered her wrists and laying the lute in her lap, bent over
it with the bending of mother over babe, and swept the strings with her
finger-tips; whereupon it moaned and resounded and after its olden home
yearned; and it remembered the waters that gave it drink and the earth
whence it sprang and wherein it grew and it minded the carpenters who
cut it and the polishers who polished it and the merchants who made it
their merchandise and the ships that shipped it; and it cried and
called aloud and moaned and groaned; and it was as if she asked it of
all these things and it answered her with the tongue of the case,
reciting these couplets,[FN#429]

"A tree whilere was I the Bulbul's home * To whom for love I
     bowed my grass-green head:
They moaned on me, and I their moaning learnt * And in that moan
     my secret all men read:
The woodman felled me falling sans offence, * And slender lute of
     me (as view ye) made:
But, when the fingers smite my strings, they tell * How man
     despite my patience did me dead;
Hence boon-companions when they hear my moan * Distracted wax as
     though by wine misled:
And the Lord softens every heart to me, * And I am hurried to the
     highmost stead:
All who in charms excel fain clasp my waist; * Gazelles of
     languid eyne and Houri maid:
Allah ne'er part fond lover from his joy * Nor live the loved one
     who unkindly fled."

Then the girl was silent awhile, but presently taking the lute in lap,
again bent over it, as mother bendeth over child, and preluded in many
different modes; then, returning to the first, she sang these couplets,

"Would they [FN#430] the lover seek without ado, * He to his
     heavy grief had bid adieu:
With him had vied the Nightingale[FN#431] on bough * As one far
     parted from his lover's view:
Rouse thee! awake! The Moon lights Union-night * As tho' such
     Union woke the Morn anew.
This day the blamers take of us no heed * And lute-strings bid us
     all our joys ensue.
Seest not how four-fold things conjoin in one * Rose, myrtle,
     scents and blooms of golden hue.[FN#432]
Yea, here this day the four chief joys unite * Drink and dinars,
     beloved and lover true:
So win thy worldly joy, for joys go past * And naught but storied
     tales and legends last."

When Nur al-Din heard the girl sing these lines he looked on her with
eyes of love and could scarce contain himself for the violence of his
inclination to her; and on like wise was it with her, because she
glanced at the company who were present of the sons of the merchants
and she saw that Nur al-Din was amongst the rest as moon among stars;
for that he was sweet of speech and replete with amorous grace, perfect
in stature and symmetry, brightness and loveliness, pure of all defect,
than the breeze of morn softer, than Tasnim blander, as saith of him
the poet,[FN#433]

"By his cheeks' unfading damask and his smiling teeth I swear, By
     the arrows that he feathers with the witchery of his air,
By his sides so soft and tender and his glances bright and keen,
     By the whiteness of his forehead and the blackness of his
By his arched imperious eyebrows, chasing slumber from my lids
     With their yeas and noes that hold me 'twixt rejoicing and
By the Scorpions that he launches from his ringlet-clustered
     brows, Seeking still to slay his lovers with his rigours
By the myrtle of his whiskers and the roses of his cheek, By his
     lips' incarnate rubies and his teeth's fine pearls and rare,
By the straight and tender sapling of his shape, which for its
     fruit Doth the twin pomegranates, shining in his snowy
     bosom, wear,
By his heavy hips that tremble, both in motion and repose, And
     the slender waist above them, all too slight their weight to
By the silk of his apparel and his quick and sprightly wit, By
     all attributes of beauty that are fallen to his share;
Lo, the musk exhales its fragrance from his breath, and eke the
     breeze From his scent the perfume borrows, that it scatters
Yea, the sun in all his splendour cannot with his brightness vie
     And the crescent moon's a fragment that he from his nails
     doth pare."

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

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixty-eighth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Nur al-Din
was delighted with the girl's verses and he swayed from side to side
for drunkenness and fell a-praising her and saying,

"A lutanist to us inclined * And stole our wits bemused with
And said to us her lute, 'The Lord * Bade us discourse by voice

When she heard him thus improvise the girl gazed at him with loving
eyes and redoubled in passion and desire for him increased upon her,
and indeed she marvelled at his beauty and loveliness, symmetry and
grace, so that she could not contain herself, but took the lute in lap
again and sang these couplets,

"He blames me for casting on him my sight * And parts fro' me
     bearing my life and sprite:
He repels me but kens what my heart endures * As though Allah
     himself had inspired the wight:
I portrayed his portrait in palm of hand * And cried to mine
     eyes, 'Weep your doleful plight.'
For neither shall eyes of me spy his like * Nor my heart have
     patience to bear its blight:
Wherefore, will I tear thee from breast, O Heart * As one who
     regards him with jealous spite.
And when say I, 'O heart be consoled for pine,' * 'Tis that heart
     to none other shall e'er incline:"

Nur al-Din wondered at the charms of her verse and the elegance of her
expression and the sweetness of her voice and the eloquence of her
speech and his wit fled for stress of love and longing, and ecstasy and
distraction, so that he could not refrain from her a single moment, but
bent to her and strained her to his bosom: and she in like manner bowed
her form over his and abandoned herself to his embrace and bussed him
between the eyes. Then he kissed her on the mouth and played with her
at kisses, after the manner of the billing of doves; and she met him
with like warmth and did with him as she was done by till the others
were distracted and rose to their feet; whereupon Nur al-Din was
ashamed and held his hand from her. Then she took her lute and,
preluding thereon in manifold modes, lastly returned to the first and
sang these couplets,

"A Moon, when he bends him those eyes lay bare * A brand that
     gars gazing gazelle despair:
A King, rarest charms are the host of him * And his lance-like
     shape men with cane compare:
Were his softness of sides to his heart transferred * His friend
     had not suffered such cark and care:
Ah for hardest heart and for softest sides! * Why not that to
     these alter, make here go there?
O thou who accusest my love excuse: * Take eternal and leave me
     the transient share."[FN#434]

When Nur al-Din heard the sweetness of her voice and the rareness of
her verse, he inclined to her for delight and could not contain himself
for excess of wonderment; so he recited these couplets,

"Methought she was the forenoon sun until she donned the veil *
     But lit she fire in vitals mine still flaring fierce and
How had it hurt her an she deigned return my poor salám * With
     fingertips or e'en vouchsafed one little wink of eye?
The cavalier who spied her face was wholly stupefied * By charms
     that glorify the place and every charm outvie.
'Be this the Fair who makes thee pine and long for love liesse? *
     Indeed thou art excused!' 'This is my fairest she;'(quoth I)
Who shot me with the shaft of looks nor deigns to rue my woes *
     Of strangerhood and broken heart and love I must aby:
I rose a-morn with vanquished heart, to longing love a prey * And
     weep I through the live long day and all the night I cry."

The girl marvelled at his eloquence and elegance and taking her lute,
smote thereon with the goodliest of performance, repeating all the
melodies, and sang these couplets,

"By the life o' thy face, O thou life o' my sprite! * I'll ne'er
     leave thy love for despair or delight:
When art cruel thy vision stands hard by my side * And the
     thought of thee haunts me when far from sight:
O who saddenest my glance albe weeting that I * No love but thy
     love will for ever requite?
Thy cheeks are of Rose and thy lips-dews are wine; * Say, wilt
     grudge them to us in this charming site?"

Hereat Nur al-Din was gladdened with extreme gladness and wondered with
the utmost wonder, so he answered her verse with these couplets,

"The sun yellowed not in the murk gloom li'en * But lay pearl
     enveiled 'neath horizon-chine;
Nor showed its crest to the eyes of Morn * But took refuge from
     parting with Morning-shine.[FN#435]
Take my tear-drops that trickle as chain on chain * And they'll
     tell my case with the clearest sign.
An my tears be likened to Nile-flood, like * Malak's[FN#436]
     flooded flat be this love o'mine.
Quoth she, 'Bring thy riches!' Quoth I, 'Come, take!' * 'And thy
     sleep?' 'Yes, take it from lids of eyne!'"

When the girl heard Nur al-Din's words and noted the beauty of his
eloquence her senses fled and her wit was dazed and love of him gat
hold upon her whole heart. So she pressed him to her bosom and fell to
kissing him like the billing of doves, whilst he returned her caresses
with successive kisses; but preeminence appertaineth to
precedence.[FN#437] When she had made an end of kissing, she took the
lute and recited these couplets,

"Alas, alack and well-away for blamer's calumny! * Whether or not
     I make my moan or plead or show no plea:
O spurner of my love I ne'er of thee so hard would deem * That I
     of thee should be despised, of thee my property.
I wont at lovers' love to rail and for their passion chide, * But
     now I fain debase myself to all who rail at thee:
Yea, only yesterday I wont all amourists to blame * But now I
     pardon hearts that pine for passion's ecstasy;
And of my stress of parting-stowre on me so heavy weighs * At
     morning prayer to Him I'll cry, 'In thy name, O Ali!'"

And also these two couplets,

"His lovers said, 'Unless he deign to give us all a drink * Of
     wine, of fine old wine his lips deal in their purity;
We to the Lord of Threefold Worlds will pray to grant our prayer'
     * And all exclaim with single cry 'In thy name, O Ali!'"

Nur al-Din, hearing these lines and their rhyme, marvelled at the
fluency of her tongue and thanked her, praising her grace and passing
seductiveness; and the damsel, delighted at his praise, arose without
stay or delay and doffing that was upon her of outer dress and trinkets
till she was free of all encumbrance sat down on his knees and kissed
him between the eyes and on his cheek-mole. Then she gave him all she
had put off.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Sixty-ninth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the girl gave
to Nur al-Din all she had doffed, saying, "O beloved of my heart, in
very sooth the gift is after the measure of the giver." So he accepted
this from her and gave it back to her and kissed her on the mouth and
cheeks and eyes. When this was ended and done, for naught is durable
save the Living, the Eternal, Provider of the peacock and the
owl,[FN#438] Nur al-Din rose from the séance and stood upon his feet,
because the darkness was now fallen and the stars shone out; whereupon
quoth the damsel to him, "Whither away, O my lord?"; and quoth he, "To
my father's home." Then the sons of the merchants conjured him to night
with them, but he refused and mounting his shemule, rode, without
stopping, till he reached his parent's house, where his mother met him
and said to him, "O my son, what hath kept thee away till this hour? By
Allah, thou hast troubled myself and thy sire by thine absence from us,
and our hearts have been occupied with thee." Then she came up to him,
to kiss him on his mouth, and smelling the fumes of the wine, said, "O
my son, how is it that, after prayer and worship thou hast become a
wine-bibber and a rebel against Him to whom belong creation and
commandment?" But Nur al-Din threw himself down on the bed and lay
there. Presently in came his sire and said, "What aileth Nur al-Din to
lie thus?"; and his mother answered, "'Twould seem his head acheth for
the air of the garden." So Taj al-Din went up to his son, to ask him of
his ailment, and salute him, and smelt the reek of wine.[FN#439] Now
the merchant loved not wine-drinkers; so he said to Nur al-Din, "Woe to
thee, O my son! Is folly come to such a pass with thee, that thou
drinkest wine?" When Nur al-Din heard his sire say this, he raised his
hand, being yet in his drunkenness, and dealt him a buffet, when by
decree of the Decreer the blow lit on his father's right eye which
rolled down on his cheek; whereupon he fell a-swoon and lay therein
awhile. They sprinkled rose-water on him till he recovered, when he
would have beaten his son; but the mother withheld him, and he swore,
by the oath of divorce from his wife that, as soon as morning morrowed,
he would assuredly cut off his son's right hand.[FN#440] When she heard
her husband's words, her breast was straitened and she feared for her
son and ceased not to soothe and appease his sire, till sleep overcame
him. Then she waited till moon-rise, when she went in to her son, whose
drunkenness had now departed from him, and said to him, "O Nur al-Din,
what is this foul deed thou diddest with thy sire?" He asked, "And what
did I with him?"; and answered she, "Thou dealtest him a buffet on the
right eye and struckest it out so that it rolled down his cheek; and he
hath sworn by the divorce-oath that, as soon as morning shall morrow he
will without fail cut off thy right hand." Nur al-Din repented him of
that he had done, whenas repentance profited him naught, and his mother
said to him, "O my son, this penitence will not profit thee; nor will
aught avail thee but that thou arise forthwith and seek safety in
flight: go forth the house privily and take refuge with one of thy
friends and there what Allah shall do await, for he changeth case after
case and state upon state." Then she opened a chest and taking out a
purse of an hundred dinars said, "O my son, take these dinars and
provide thy wants therewith, and when they are at an end, O my son,
send and let me know thereof, that I may send thee other than these,
and at the same time covey to me news of thyself privily: haply Allah
will decree thee relief and thou shalt return to thy home." And she
farewelled him and wept passing sore, nought could be more. Thereupon
Nur al-Din took the purse of gold and was about to go forth, when he
espied a great purse containing a thousand dinars, which his mother had
forgotten by the side of the chest. So he took this also and binding
the two purses about his middle,[FN#441] set out before dawn threading
the streets in the direction of Búlák, where he arrived when day broke
and all creatures arose, attesting the unity of Allah the Opener and
went forth each of them upon his several business, to win that which
Allah had unto him allotted. Reaching Bulak he walked on along the
riverbank till he sighted a ship with her gangway out and her four
anchors made fast to the land. The folk were going up into her and
coming down from her, and Nur al-Din, seeing some sailors there
standing, asked them whither they were bound, and they answered, "To
Rosetta-city." Quoth he, "Take me with you;" and quoth they, "Well
come, and welcome to thee, to thee, O goodly one!" So he betook himself
forthright to the market and buying what he needed of vivers and
bedding and covering, returned to the port and went on board the ship,
which was ready to sail and tarried with him but a little while before
she weighed anchor and fared on, without stopping, till she reached
Rosetta,[FN#442] where Nur al-Din saw a small boat going to Alexandria.
So he embarked in it and traversing the sea-arm of Rosetta fared on
till he came to a bridge called Al-Jámí, where he landed and entered
Alexandria by the gate called the Gate of the Lote-tree. Allah
protected him, so that none of those who stood on guard at the gate saw
him, and he walked on till he entered the city.—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventieth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Nur
al-Din entered Alexandria he found it a city goodly of pleasaunces,
delightful to its inhabitants and inviting to inhabit therein. Winter
had fared from it with his cold and Prime was come to it with his
roses: its flowers were kindly ripe and welled forth its rills. Indeed,
it was a city goodly of ordinance and disposition; its folk were of the
best of men, and when the gates thereof were shut, its folk were
safe.[FN#443] And it was even as is said of it in these couplets,

"Quoth I to a comrade one day, * A man of good speech and rare,
'Describe Alexandria.' * Quoth he, 'Tis a march-town fair.'
Quoth I, 'Is there living therein?' * And he, 'An the wind blow

Or as saith one of the poets,

"Alexandria's a frontier;[FN#444] Whose dews of lips are sweet
     and clear;
How fair the coming to it is, * So one therein no raven speer!"

Nur al-Din walked about the city and ceased not walking till he came to
the merchants' bazar, whence he passed on to the mart of the
money-changers and so on in turn to the markets of the confectioners
and fruiterers and druggists, marvelling, as he went, at the city, for
that the nature of its qualities accorded with its name.[FN#445] As he
walked in the druggists' bazar, behold, an old man came down from his
shop and saluting him, took him by the hand and carried him to his
home. And Nur al-Din saw a fair bystreet, swept and sprinkled, whereon
the zephyr blew and made pleasantness pervade it and the leaves of the
trees overshaded it. Therein stood three houses and at the upper end a
mansion, whose foundations were firm sunk in the water and its walls
towered to the confines of the sky. They had swept the space before it
and they had sprinkled it freshly; so it exhaled the fragrance of
flowers, borne on the zephyr which breathed upon the place; and the
scent met there who approached it on such wise as it were one of the
gardens of Paradise. And, as they had cleaned and cooled the
by-street's head, so was the end of it with marble spread. The Shaykh
carried Nur al-Din into the house and setting somewhat of food before
him ate with his guest. When they had made an end of eating, the
druggist said to him, "When camest thou hither from Cairo?"; and Nur
al-Din replied, "This very night, O my father." Quoth the old man,
"What is thy name?"; and quoth he, "Ali Nur al-Din." Said the druggist,
"O my son, O Nur al-Din, be the triple divorce incumbent on me, an thou
leave me so long as thou abidest in this city; and I will set thee
apart a place wherein thou mayst dwell." Nur al-Din asked, "O my lord
the Shaykh, let me know more of thee"; and the other answered, "Know, O
my son, that some years ago I went to Cairo with merchandise, which I
sold there and bought other, and I had occasion for a thousand dinars.
So thy sire Taj al-Din weighed them out[FN#446] for me, all unknowing
me, and would take no written word of me, but had patience with me till
I returned hither and sent him the amount by one of my servants,
together with a gift. I saw thee, whilst thou wast little; and, if it
please Allah the Most High, I will repay thee somewhat of the kindness
thy father did me." When Nur al-Din heard the old man's story, he
showed joy and pulling out with a smile the purse of a thousand dinars,
gave it to his host the Shaykh and said to him, "Take charge of this
deposit for me, against I buy me somewhat of merchandise whereon to
trade." Then he abode some time in Alexandria city taking his pleasure
every day in its thoroughfares, eating and drinking ad indulging
himself with mirth and merriment till he had made an end of the hundred
dinars he had kept by way of spending-money; whereupon he repaired to
the old druggist, to take of him somewhat of the thousand dinars to
spend, but found him not in his shop and took a seat therein to await
his return. He sat there gazing right and left and amusing himself with
watching the merchants and passers-by, and as he was thus engaged
behold, there came into the bazar a Persian riding on a she-mule and
carrying behind him a damsel; as she were argent of alloy free or a
fish Balti[FN#447] in mimic sea or a doe-gazelle on desert lea. Her
face outshone the sun in shine and she had witching eyne and breasts of
ivory white, teeth of marguerite, slender waist and sides dimpled deep
and calves like tails of fat sheep;[FN#448] and indeed she was perfect
in beauty and loveliness, elegant stature and symmetrical grace, even
as saith one, describing her,[FN#449]

"'Twas as by will of her she was create * Nor short nor long, but
     Beauty's mould and mate:
Rose blushes reddest when she sees those cheeks * And fruits the
     bough those marvel charms amate:
Moon is her favour, Musk the scent of her * Branch is her shape:Â
     she passeth man's estate:
'Tis e'en as were she cast in freshest pearl * And every limblet
     shows a moon innate."

Presently the Persian lighted down from his she-mule and making the
damsel also dismount loudly summoned the broker and said to him as soon
as he came, "Take this damsel and cry her for sale in the market." So
he took her and leading her to the middlemost of the bazar disappeared
for a while and presently he returned with a stool of ebony, inlaid
with ivory, and setting it upon the ground, seated her thereon. Then he
raised her veil and discovered a face as it were a Median targe[FN#450]
or a cluster of pearls:[FN#451] and indeed she was like the full moon,
when it filleth on its fourteenth night, accomplished in brilliant
beauty. As saith the poet,

"Vied the full moon for folly with her face, * But was
     eclipsed[FN#452] and split for rage full sore;
And if the spiring Bán with her contend * Perish her hands who
     load of fuel bore!"[FN#453]

And how well saith another,

"Say to the fair in the wroughten veil * How hast made that
     monk-like worshipper ail?
Light of veil and light of face under it * Made the hosts of
     darkness to fly from bale;
And, when came my glance to steal look at cheek. * With a
     meteor-shaft the Guard made me quail."[FN#454]

Then said the broker to the merchants,[FN#455] "How much do ye bid for
the union-pearl of the diver and prize-quarry of the fowler?" Quoth
one, "She is mine for an hundred dinars." And another said, "Two
hundred," and a third, "Three hundred"; and they ceased not to bid, one
against other, till they made her price nine hundred and fifty dinars,
and there the biddings stopped awaiting acceptance and
consent.[FN#456]—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventy-first Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the merchants bid
one against other till they made the price of the girl nine hundred and
fifty dinars. Then the broker went up to her Persian master and said to
him, "The biddings for this thy slave-girl have reached nine hundred
and fifty dinars: so say me, wilt thou sell her at that price and take
the money?" Asked the Persian, "Doth she consent to this? I desire to
fall in with her wishes, for I sickened on my journey hither and this
handmaid tended me with all possible tenderness, wherefore I sware not
to sell her but to him whom she should like and approve, and I have put
her sale in her own hand. So do thou consult her and if she say, 'I
consent,' sell her to whom thou wilt: but an she say, 'No,' sell her
not." So the broker went up to her and asked her, "O Princess of fair
ones, know that thy master putteth thy sale in thine own hands, and thy
price hath reached nine hundred and fifty dinars; dost thou give me
leave to sell thee?" She answered, "Show me him who is minded to buy me
before clinching the bargain." So he brought her up to one of the
merchants a man stricken with years and decrepit; and she looked at him
a long while, then turned to the broker and said to him, "O broker, art
thou Jinn-mad or afflicted in thy wit?" Replied he, "Why dost thou ask
me this, O Princess of fair ones?"; and said she, "Is it permitted thee
of Allah to sell the like of me to yonder decrepit old man, who saith
of his wife's case these couplets,

'Quoth she to me,—and sore enraged for wounded pride was she, *
     For she in sooth had bidden me to that which might not be,—
'An if thou swive me not forthright, as one should swive his
     wife, * Thou be made a cuckold straight, reproach it not to
Meseems thy yard is made of wax, for very flaccidness; * For when
     I rub it with my hand, it softens instantly.'[FN#457]

And said he likewise of his yard,

'I have a yard that sleeps in base and shameful way * When grants
     my lover boon for which I sue and pray:
But when I wake o' mornings[FN#458] all alone in bed, * 'Tis fain
     o' foin and fence and fierce for futter-play.'

And again quoth he thereof of his yard,

'I have a froward yard of temper ill * Dishonoring him who shows
     it most regard:
It stands when sleep I, when I stand it sleeps * Heaven pity not
     who pitieth that yard!'"

When the old merchant heard this ill flouting from the damsel, he was
wroth with wrath exceeding beyond which was no proceeding and said to
the broker, "O most ill-omened of brokers, thou hast not brought into
the market this ill-conditioned wench but to gibe me and make mock of
me before the merchants." Then the broker took her aside and said to
her, "O my lady, be not wanting in self-respect. The Shaykh at whom
thou didst mock is the Syndic of the bazar and Inspector[FN#459]
thereof and a committee-man of the council of the merchants." But she
laughed and improvised these two couplets,

"It behoveth folk who rule in our time, * And 'tis one of the
     duties of magistrateship,
To hand up the Wali above his door * And beat with a whip the

Adding, "By Allah, O my lord, I will not be sold to yonder old man; so
sell me to other than him, for haply he will be abashed at me and vend
me again and I shall become a mere servant[FN#460] and it beseemeth not
that I sully myself with menial service; and indeed thou knowest that
the matter of my sale is committed to myself." He replied, "I hear and
I obey," and carried her to a man which was one of the chief merchants.
And when standing hard by him the broker asked, "How sayst thou, O my
lady? Shall I sell thee to my lord Sharíf al-Dín here for nine hundred
and fifty gold pieces?" She looked at him and, seeing him to be an old
man with a dyed beard, said to the broker, "Art thou silly, that thou
wouldst sell me to this worn out Father Antic? Am I cotton refuse or
threadbare rags that thou marchest me about from greybeard to
greybeard, each like a wall ready to fall or an Ifrit smitten down of a
fire-ball? As for the first, the poet had him in mind when he

'I sought of a fair maid to kiss her lips of coral red, But, 'No,
     by Him who fashioned things from nothingness!' she said.
Unto the white of hoary hairs I never had a mind, And shall my
     mouth be stuffed, forsooth, with cotton, ere I'm dead?'

And how goodly is the saying of the poet,

'The wise have said that white of hair is light that shines and
     robes * The face of man with majesty and light that awes the
Yet until hoary seal shall stamp my parting-place of hair * I
     hope and pray that same may be black as the blackest night.
Albe Time-whitened beard of man be like the book he bears[FN#462]
     * When to his Lord he must return, I'd rather 'twere not

And yet goodlier is the saying of another,

'A guest hath stolen on my head and honour may he lack! * The
     sword a milder deed hath done that dared these locks to
Avaunt, O Whiteness,[FN#463] wherein naught of brightness
     gladdens sight * Thou 'rt blacker in the eyes of me than
     very blackest black!'

As for the other, he is a model of wantonness and scurrilousness and a
blackener of the face of hoariness; his dye acteth the foulest of lies:
and the tongue of his case reciteth these lines,[FN#464]

'Quoth she to me, 'I see thou dy'st thy hoariness;' and I, 'I do
     but hide it from thy sight, O thou mine ear and eye!'
She laughed out mockingly and said, 'A wonder 'tis indeed! Thou
     so aboundest in deceit that even thy hair's a lie.'

And how excellent is the saying of the poet,

'O thou who dyest hoariness with black, * That youth wi' thee
     abide, at least in show;
Look ye, my lot was dyčd black whilome * And (take my word!) none
     other hue 'twill grow.'"

When the old man with dyed beard heard such words from the slave-girl,
he raged with exceeding rage in fury's last stage and said to the
broker, "O most ill-omened of brokers, this day thou hast brought to
our market naught save this gibing baggage to flout at all who are
therein, one after other, and fleer at them with flyting verse and idle
jest?" And he came down from his shop and smote on the face the broker
who took her an angered and carried her away saying to her, "By Allah,
never in my life saw I a more shameless wench than thyself![FN#465]
Thou hast cut off my daily bread and thine own this day and all the
merchants will bear me a grudge on thine account." Then they saw on the
way a merchant called Shihab al-Dín who bid ten dinars more for her,
and the broker asked her leave to sell her to him. Quoth she, "Trot him
out that I may see him and question him of a certain thing, which if he
have in his house, I will be sold to him; and if not, then not." So the
broker left her standing there and going up to Shihab al-Din, said to
him, "O my lord, know that yonder damsel tells me she hath a mind to
ask thee somewhat, which an thou have, she will be sold to thee. Now
thou hast heard what she said to thy fellows, the merchants,"—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventy-second Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the broker
said to the merchant, "Thou hast heard what this handmaid said to thy
fellows, the traders, and by Allah, I fear to bring her to thee, lest
she do with thee like as she did with thy neighbours and so I fall into
disgrace with thee: but, an thou bid me bring her to thee, I will bring
her." Quoth the merchant, "Hither with her to me." "Hearing and
obeying," answered the broker and fetched for the purchaser the damsel,
who looked at him and said, "O my lord, Shihab al-Din, hast thou in thy
house round cushions stuffed with ermine strips?" Replied Shihab
al-Din, "Yes, O Princess of fair ones, I have at home half a score such
cushions; but I conjure thee by Allah, tell me, what will thou do with
them?" Quoth she, "I will bear with thee till thou be asleep, when I
will lay them on thy mouth and nose and press them down till thou die."
Then she turned to the broker and said to him, "O thou refuse of
brokers, meseemeth thou art mad, in that thou showest me this hour
past, first to a pair of greybeards, in each of whom are two faults,
and then thou proferrest me to my lord Shihab al-Din wherein be three
defects; firstly, he is dwarfish, secondly, he hath a nose which is
big, and thirdly, he hath a beard which is long. Of him quoth one of
the poets,

'We never heard of wight nor yet espied * Who amid men three
     gifts hath unified:
To wit, a beard one cubit long, a snout * Span-long and figure
     tall a finger wide:'

And quoth another poet,

'From the plain of his face springs a minaret * Like a bezel of
     ring on his finger set:
Did creation enter that vasty nose * No created thing would
     elsewhere be met.'"

When Shihab al-Din heard this, he came down from his shop and seized
the broker by the collar, saying, "O scurviest of brokers, what aileth
thee to bring us a damsel to flout and make mock of us, one after
other, with her verses and talk that a curse is?" So the broker took
her and carried her away from before him and fared, saying, "By Allah,
all my life long, since I have plied this profession never set I eyes
on the like of thee for unmannerliness nor aught more curst to me than
thy star, for thou hast cut off my livelihood this day and I have
gained no profit by thee save cuffs on the neck-nape and catching by
the collar!" Then he brought her to the shop of another merchant, owner
of negro slaves and white servants, and stationing her before him, said
to her, "Wilt thou be sold to this my lord 'Alá al-Dín?" She looked at
him and seeing him hump-backed, said, "This is a Gobbo," and quoth the
poet of him,

'Drawn in thy shoulders are and spine thrust out, * As seeking
     star which Satan gave the lout;[FN#466]
Or as he tasted had first smack of scourge * And looked in marvel
     for a second bout.'

And saith another on the same theme,

'As one of you who mounted mule, * A sight for me to ridicule: Is 't
not a farce? Who feels surprise * An start and bolt with him the mule?'

And another on a similar subject,

'Oft hunchback addeth to his bunchy back * Faults which gar folk
     upon his front look black:
Like branch distort and dried by length of days * With citrons
     hanging from it loose and slack.'"

With this the broker hurried up to her and, carrying her to another
merchant, said to her, "Wilt thou be sold to this one?" She looked at
him and said, "In very sooth this man is blue-eyed;[FN#467] how wilt
thou sell me to him?" Quoth one of the poets,

'His eyelids sore and bleared * Weakness of frame denote:
Arise, ye folk and see * Within his eyes the mote!'"

Then the broker carried her to another and she looked at him and seeing
that he had a long beard, said to the broker, "Fie upon thee! This is a
ram, whose tail hath sprouted from his gullet. Wilt thou sell me to
him, O unluckiest of brokers? Hast thou not heard say: 'All long of
beard are little of wits? Indeed, after the measure of the length of
the beard is the lack of sense; and this is a well-known thing among
men of understanding.' As saith one of the poets,

'Ne'er was a man with beard grown overlong, * Tho' be he therefor
     reverenced and fear'd,
But who the shortness noted in his wits * Added to longness noted
     in his beard.'

And quoth another,[FN#468]

'I have a friend with a beard which God hath made to grow to a
     useless length,
It is like unto one of the nights of winter long and dark and

With this the broker took her and turned away with her, and she asked,
"Whither goest thou with me?" He answered, "Back to thy master the
Persian; it sufficeth me what hath befallen me because of thee this
day; for thou hast been the means of spoiling both my trade and his by
thine ill manners." Then she looked about the market right and left,
front and rear till, by the decree of the Decreer her eyes fell on Ali
Nur al-Din the Cairene. So she gazed at him and saw him[FN#469] to be a
comely youth of straight slim form and smooth of face, fourteen years
old, rare in beauty and loveliness and elegance and amorous grace like
the full moon on the fourteenth night with forehead flower-white, and
cheeks rosy red, neck like alabaster and teeth than jewels finer and
dews of lips sweeter than sugar, even as saith of him one of his

"Came to match him in beauty and loveliness rare * Full moons and
     gazelles but quoth I, 'Soft fare!
Fare softly, gazelles, nor yourselves compare * With him and, O
     Moons, all your pains forbear!'"

And how well saith another bard,

"Slim-waisted loveling, from his hair and brow * Men wake a-morn
     in night and light renewed.
Blame not the mole that dwelleth on his cheek * For Nu'uman's
     bloom aye shows spot negro-hued."

When the slave-girl beheld Nur al-Din he interposed between her and her
wits; she fell in love to him with a great and sudden fall and her
heart was taken with affection for him;—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventy-third Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
slave-girl beheld Nur al-Din, her heart was taken with affection for
him; so she turned to the broker and said to him, "Will not yonder
young merchant who is sitting among the traders in the gown of striped
broadcloth bid somewhat more for me?" The broker replied, "O lady of
fair ones, yonder young man is a stranger from Cairo, where his father
is chief of the trader-guild and surpasseth all the merchants and
notables of the place. He is but lately come to this our city and
lodgeth with one of his father's friends; but he hath made no bid for
thee nor more nor less." When the girl heard the broker's words, she
drew from her finger a costly signet-ring of ruby and said to the man,
"Carry me to yonder youth, and if he buy me, this ring shall be thine,
in requital of thy travail with me this day." The broker rejoiced at
this and brought her up to Nur al-Din, and she considered him straitly
and found him like the full moon, perfect in loveliness and a model of
fine stature and symmetric grace, even as saith of him one of his

"Waters of beauty o'er his cheeks flow bright, * And rain his
     glances shafts that sorely smite:
Choked are his lovers an he deal disdain's * Bitterest draught
     denaying love-delight.
His forehead and his stature and my love * Are perfect perfected
His raiment folds enfold a lovely neck * As crescent moon in
     collar buttoned tight:
His eyne and twinnčd moles and tears of me * Are night that
     nighteth to the nightliest night.
His eyebrows and his features and my frame[FN#470] * Crescents on
     crescents are as crescents slight:
His pupils pass the wine-cup to his friends * Which, albe sweet,
     tastes bitter to my sprite;
And to my thirsty throat pure drink he dealt * From smiling lips
     what day we were unite:
Then is my blood to him, my death to him * His right and rightful
     and most righteous right."

The girl gazed at Nur al-Din and said, "O my lord, Allah upon thee, am
I not beautiful?"; and he replied, "O Princess of fair ones, is there
in the world a comelier than thou?" She rejoined, "Then why seest thou
all the other merchants bid high for me and art silent nor sayest a
word neither addest one dinar to my price? 'Twould seem I please thee
not, O my lord!" Quoth he, "O my lady, were I in my own land, I had
bought thee with all that my hand possesseth of monies;" and quoth she,
"O my lord, I said not, 'Buy me against thy will,' yet, didst thou but
add somewhat to my price, it would hearten my heart, though thou buy me
not, so the merchants may say, 'Were not this girl handsome, yonder
merchant of Cairo had not bidden for her, for the Cairenes are
connoisseurs in slave-girls.'" These words abashed Nur al-Din and he
blushed and said to the broker, "How high are the biddings for her?" He
replied, "Her price hath reached nine hundred and sixty dinars,[FN#471]
besides brokerage, as for the Sultan's dues, they fall on the seller."
Quoth Nur al-Din, "Let me have her for a thousand dinars, brokerage and
price." And the damsel hastening to the fore and leaving the broker,
said, "I sell myself to this handsome young man for a thousand dinars."
But Nur al-Din held his peace. Quoth one, "We sell to him;" and
another, "He deserveth her;" and a third, "Accursed, son of accursed,
is he who biddeth and doth not buy!"; and a fourth, "By Allah, they
befit each other!" Then, before Nur al-Din could think, the broker
fetched Kazis and witnesses, who wrote out a contract of sale and
purchase; and the broker handed the paper to Nur al-Din, saying, "Take
thy slave-girl and Allah bless thee in her for she beseemeth none but
thee and none but thou beseemeth her." And he recited these two

"Boon Fortune sought him in humblest way[FN#472] * And came to
     him draggle-tailed, all a-stir:
And none is fittest for him but she * And none is fittest but he
     for her."

Hereat Nur al-Din was abashed before the merchants; so he arose without
stay or delay and weighed out the thousand dinars which he had left as
a deposit with his father's friend the druggist, and taking the girl,
carried her to the house wherein the Shaykh had lodged him. When she
entered and saw nothing but ragged patched carpets and worn out rugs,
she said to him, "O my lord, have I no value to thee and am I not
worthy that thou shouldst bear me to thine own house and home wherein
are thy goods, that thou bringest me into thy servant's lodging? Why
dost thou not carry me to thy father's dwelling?" He replied, "By
Allah, O Princess of fair ones, this is my house wherein I dwell; but
it belongeth to an old man, a druggist of this city, who hath set it
apart for me and lodged me therein. I told thee that I was a stranger
and that I am of the sons of Cairo city." She rejoined, "O my lord, the
least of houses sufficeth till thy return to thy native place; but,
Allah upon thee, O my lord, go now and fetch us somewhat of roast meat
and wine and dried fruit and dessert." Quoth Nur al-Din, "By Allah, O
Princess of fair ones, I had no money with me but the thousand dinars I
paid down to thy price nor possess I any other good. The few dirhams I
owned were spent by me yesterday." Quoth she, "Hast thou no friend in
the town, of whom thou mayst borrow fifty dirhams and bring them to me,
that I may tell thee what thou shalt do therewith?" And he said, "I
have no intimate but the druggist." Then he betook himself forthright
to the druggist and said to him, "Peace be with thee, O uncle!" He
returned his salam and said to him, "O my son, what hast thou bought
for a thousand dinars this day?" Nur al-Din replied, "I have bought a
slave-girl;" and the oldster rejoined, "O my son, art thou mad that
thou givest a thousand dinars for one slave-girl? Would I knew what
kind of slave-girl she is?" Said Nur al-Din, "She is a damsel of the
children of the Franks;"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventy-fourth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Nur al-Din
said to the ancient druggist, "The damsel is of the children of the
Franks;" and the Shaykh said, "O my son, the best of the girls of the
Franks are to be had in this our town for an hundred dinars, and by
Allah, O my son, they have cheated thee in the matter of this damsel!
However, an thou have taken a fancy to her, lie with her this night and
do thy will of her and to-morrow morning go down with her to the market
and sell her, though thou lose by her two hundred dinars, and reckon
that thou hast lost them by shipwreck or hast been robbed of them on
the road." Nur al-Din replied, "Right is thy rede, O uncle, but thou
knowest that I had but the thousand dinars wherewith I purchased the
damsel, and now I have not a single dirham left to spend; so I desire
of thy favour and bounty that thou lend me fifty dirhams, to provide me
withal, till to-morrow, when I will sell her and repay thee out of her
price." Said the old man, "Willingly, O my son," and counted out to him
the fifty dirhams. Then he said to him, "O my son, thou art but young
in years and the damsel is fair, so belike thy heart will be taken with
her and it will be grievous to thee to vend her. Now thou hast nothing
to live on and these fifty dirhams will readily be spent and thou wilt
come to me and I shall lend thee once and twice and thrice, and so on
up to ten times; but, an thou come to me after this, I will not return
thy salam[FN#473] and our friendship with thy father will end ill." Nur
al-Din took the fifty dirhams and returned with them to the damsel, who
said to him, "O my lord, wend thee at once to the market and fetch me
twenty dirhams' worth of stained silk of five colours and with the
other thirty buy meat and bread and fruit and wine and flowers." So he
went to the market and purchasing for her all she sought, brought it to
her, whereupon she rose and tucking up her sleeves, cooked food after
the most skilful fashion, and set it before him. He ate and she ate
with him, till they had enough, after which she set on the wine, and
she drank and he drank, and she ceased not to ply him with drink and
entertain him with discourse, till he became drunken and fell asleep.
Thereupon she arose without stay or delay and taking out of her bundle
a budget of Táifí leather,[FN#474] opened it and drew forth a pair of
knitting needles, wherewith she fell to work and stinted not till she
had made a beautiful zone, which she folded up in a wrapper after
cleaning it and ironing it, and laid it under her pillow. Then she
doffed her dress till she was mother-naked and lying down beside Nur
al-Din shampoo'd him till he awoke from his heavy sleep. He found by
his side a maiden like virgin silver, softer than silk and delicater
than a tail of fatted sheep, than standard more conspicuous and
goodlier than the red camel,[FN#475] in height five feet tall with
breasts firm and full, brows like bended bows, eyes like gazelles' eyes
and cheeks like blood-red anemones, a slender waist with dimples laced
and a navel holding an ounce of the unguent benzoin, thighs like
bolsters stuffed with ostrich-down, and between them what the tongue
fails to set forth and at mention whereof the tears jet forth. Brief it
was as it were she to whom the poet alluded in these two couplets,

"From her hair is Night, from her forehead Noon * From her
     side-face Rose; from her lip wine boon:
From her Union Heaven, her Severance Hell: * Pearls from her
     teeth; from her front full Moon."

And how excellent is the saying of another bard,[FN#476]

"A Moon she rises, Willow-wand she waves * Breathes ambergris and
     gazeth a gazelle.
Meseems that sorrow wooes my heart and wins * And when she wends
     makes haste therein to dwell.
Her face is fairer than the Stars of Wealth[FN#477] * And sheeny
     brows the crescent Moon excel."

And quoth a third also,

"They shine fullest Moons, unveil Crescent-bright; *
     Sway tenderest Branches and turn wild kine;
'Mid which is a Dark-eyed for love of whose charms *
     The Sailors[FN#478] would joy to be ground low-li'en."

So Nur al-Din turned to her at once and clasping her to his bosom,
sucked first her upper lip and then her under lip and slid his tongue
between the twain into her mouth. Then he rose to her and found her a
pearl unthridden and a filly none but he had ridden. So he abated her
maidenhead and had of her amorous delight and there was knitted between
them a love-bond which might never know breach nor severance.[FN#479]
He rained upon her cheeks kisses like the falling of pebbles into
water, and struck with stroke upon stroke, like the thrusting of spears
in battle brunt; for that Nur al-Din still yearned after clipping of
necks and sucking of lips and letting down of tress and pressing of
waist and biting of cheek and cavalcading on breast with Cairene
buckings and Yamani wrigglings and Abyssinian sobbings and Hindí
pamoisons and Nubian lasciviousness and Rífí leg-liftings[FN#480] and
Damiettan moanings and Sa'ídí[FN#481] hotness and Alexandrian
languishment[FN#482] and this damsel united in herself all these
virtues, together with excess of beauty and loveliness, and indeed she
was even as saith of her the poet,

"This is she I will never forget till I die * Nor draw near but
     to those who to her draw nigh.
A being for semblance like Moon at full * Praise her Maker, her
     Modeller glorify!
Tho' be sore my sin seeking love-liesse * On esperance-day ne'er
     repent can I;
A couplet reciting which none can know * Save the youth who in
     couplets and rhymes shall cry,
'None weeteth love but who bears its load * Nor passion, save
     pleasures and pains he aby.'"

So Nur al-Din lay with the damsel through the night in solace and
delight,—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventy-fifth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Nur al-Din lay
with that damsel through the night in solace and delight, the twain
garbed in the closely buttoned garments of embrace, safe and secure
against the misways of nights and days, and they passed the dark hours
after the goodliest fashion, fearing naught, in their joys
love-fraught, from excess of talk and prate. As saith of them the right
excellent poet,[FN#483]

"Go, visit her thou lovest, and regard not
The words detractors utter; envious churls
Can never favour love. Oh! sure the merciful
Ne'er make a thing more fair to look upon,
Than two fond lovers in each other's arms,
Speaking their passion in a mute embrace.
When heart has turned to heart, the fools would part them
Strike idly on cold steel. So when thou'st found
One purely, wholly thine, accept her true heart,
And live for her alone. Oh! thou that blamest
The love-struck for their love, give o'er thy talk
How canst thou minister to a mind diseased?"

When the morning morrowed in sheen and shone, Nur al-Din awoke from
deep sleep and found that she had brought water:[FN#484] so they made
the Ghusl-ablution, he and she, and he performed that which behoved him
of prayer to his Lord, after which she set before him meat and drink,
and he ate and drank. Then the damsel put her hand under her pillow and
pulling out the girdle which she had knitted during the night, gave it
to Nur al-Din, who asked, "Whence cometh this girdle?"[FN#485] Answered
she, "O my lord, 'tis the silk thou boughtest yesterday for twenty
dirhams. Rise now and go to the Persian bazar and give it to the
broker, to cry for sale, and sell it not for less than twenty gold
pieces in ready money." Quoth Nur al-Din, "O Princess of fair ones how
can a thing, that cost twenty dirhams and will sell for as many dinars,
be made in a single night?"; and quoth she, "O my lord, thou knowest
not the value of this thing; but go to the market therewith and give it
to the broker, and when he shall cry it, its worth will be made
manifest to thee." Herewith he carried the zone to the market and gave
it to the broker, bidding him cry it, whilst he himself sat down on a
masonry bench before a shop. The broker fared forth and returning after
a while said to him, "O my lord, rise take the price of thy zone, for
it hath fetched twenty dinars money down." When Nur al-Din heard this,
he marvelled with exceeding marvel and shook with delight. Then he
rose, between belief and misbelief, to take the money and when he had
received it, he went forthright and spent it all on silk of various
colours and returning home, gave his purchase to the damsel, saying,
"Make this all into girdles and teach me likewise how to make them,
that I may work with thee; for never in the length of my life saw I a
fairer craft than this craft nor a more abounding in gain and profit.
By Allah, 'tis better than the trade of a merchant a thousand times!"
She laughed at his language and said, "O my lord, go to thy friend the
druggist and borrow other thirty dirhams of him, and to-morrow repay
him from the price of the girdle the thirty together with the fifty
already loaned to thee." So he rose and repaired to the druggist and
said to him, "O Uncle, lend me other thirty dirhams, and to-morrow,
Almighty Allah willing, I will repay thee the whole fourscore." The old
man weighed him out thirty dirhams, wherewith he went to the market and
buying meat and bread, dried fruits, and flowers as before, carried
them home to the damsel whose name was Miriam,[FN#486] the Girdle-girl.
She rose forthright and making ready rich meats, set them before her
lord Nur al-Din; after which she brought the wine-service and they
drank and plied each other with drink. When the wine began to play with
their wits, his pleasant address and inner grace pleased her, and she
recited these two couplets,

"Said I to Slim-waist who the wine engraced * Brought in
     musk-scented bowl and a superfine,
'Was it prest from thy cheek?' He replied 'Nay, nay! * When did
     man from Roses e'er press the Wine?'"

And the damsel ceased not to carouse with her lord and ply him with cup
and bowl and require him to fill for her and give her to drink of that
which sweeteneth the spirits, and whenever he put forth hand to her,
she drew back from him, out of coquetry. The wine added to her beauty
and loveliness, and Nur al-Din recited these two couplets,

"Slim-waist craved wine from her companeer; * Cried (in meeting
     of friends when he feared for his fere,)
'An thou pass not the wine thou shalt pass the night, * A-banisht
     my bed!' And he felt sore fear."

They ceased not drinking till drunkenness overpowered Nur al-Din and he
slept; whereupon she rose forthright and fell to work upon a zone, as
was her wont. When she had wrought it to end, she wrapped it in paper
and doffing her clothes, lay down by his side and enjoyed dalliance and
delight till morn appeared.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventy-sixth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Miriam the
Girdle-girl, having finished her zone and wrapped it in paper doffed
her dress and lay down by the side of her lord; and then happened to
them what happened of dalliance and delight; and he did his devoir like
a man. On the morrow, she gave him the girdle and said to him, "Carry
this to the market and sell it for twenty dinars, even as thou soldest
its fellow yesterday." So he went to the bazar and sold the girdle for
twenty dinars, after which he repaired to the druggist and paid him
back the eighty dirhams, thanking him for the bounties and calling down
blessings upon him. He asked, "O my son, hast thou sold the damsel?";
and Nur al-Din answered, "Wouldst thou have me sell the soul out of my
body?" and he told him all that had passed, from commencement to
conclusion, whereat the druggist joyed with joy galore, than which
could be no more and said to him, "By Allah, O my son, thou gladdenest
me! Inshallah, mayst thou ever be in prosperity! Indeed I wish thee
well by reason of my affection for thy father and the continuance of my
friendship with him." Then Nur al-Din left the Shaykh and straightway
going to the market, bought meat and fruit and wine and all that he
needed according to his custom and returned therewith to Miriam. They
abode thus a whole year in eating and drinking and mirth and merriment
and love and good comradeship, and every night she made a zone and he
sold it on the morrow for twenty dinars, wherewith he bought their
needs and gave the rest to her, to keep against a time of necessity.
After the twelvemonth she said to him one day, "O my lord, whenas thou
sellest the girdle to-morrow, buy for me with its price silk of six
colours, because I am minded to make thee a kerchief to wear on thy
shoulders, such as never son of merchant, no, nor King's son, ever
rejoiced in its like." So next day he fared forth to the bazar and
after selling the zone brought her the dyed silks she sought and Miriam
the Girdle-girl wrought at the kerchief a whole week, for, every night,
when she had made an end of the zone, she would work awhile at the
kerchief till it was finished. Then she gave it to Nur al-Din, who put
it on his shoulders and went out to walk in the market-place, whilst
all the merchants and folk and notables of the town crowded about him,
to gaze on his beauty and that of the kerchief which was of the most
beautiful. Now it chanced that one night, after this, he awoke from
sleep and found Miriam weeping passing sore and reciting these

"Nears my parting fro' my love, nigher draws the Severance-day *
     Ah well-away for parting! and again ah well-away!
And in tway is torn my heart and O pine I'm doomed to bear * For
     the nights that erst witnessed our pleasurable play!
No help for it but Envier the twain of us espy * With evil eye
     and win to us his lamentable way.
For naught to us is sorer than the jealousy of men * And the
     backbiter's eyne that with calumny affray."

He said, "O my lady Miriam,[FN#487] what aileth thee to weep?"; and she
replied, "I weep for the anguish of parting for my heart presageth me
thereof." Quoth he, "O lady of fair ones, and who shall interpose
between us, seeing that I love thee above all creatures and tender thee
the most?"; and quoth she, "And I love thee twice as well as thou me;
but fair opinion of fortune still garreth folk fall into affliction,
and right well saith the poet,[FN#488]

'Think'st thou thyself all prosperous, in days which prosp'rous
Nor fearest thou impending ill, which comes by Heaven's decree?
We see the orbs of heav'n above, how numberless they are,
But sun and moon alone eclips'd, and ne'er a lesser star!
And many a tree on earth we see, some bare, some leafy green,
Of them, not one is hurt with stone save that has fruitful been!
See'st not th' refluent ocean, bear carrion on its tide,
While pearls beneath its wavy flow, fixed in the deep, abide?'"

Presently she added, "O my lord Nur al-Din, an thou desire to nonsuit
separation, be on thy guard against a swart-visaged oldster, blind of
the right eye and lame of the left leg; for he it is who will be the
cause of our severance. I saw him enter the city and I opine that he is
come hither in quest of me." Replied Nur al-Din, "O lady of fair ones,
if my eyes light on him, I will slay him and make an example of him."
Rejoined she, "O my lord, slay him not; but talk not nor trade with
him, neither buy nor sell with him nor sit nor walk with him nor speak
one word to him, no, not even the answer prescribed by law,[FN#489] and
I pray Allah to preserve us from his craft and his mischief." Next
morning, Nur al-Din took the zone and carried it to the market, where
he sat down on a shop-bench and talked with the sons of the merchants,
till the drowsiness preceding slumber overcame him and he lay down on
the bench and fell asleep. Presently, behold, up came the Frank whom
the damsel had described to him, in company with seven others, and
seeing Nur al-Din lying asleep on the bench, with his head wrapped in
the kerchief which Miriam had made for him and the edge thereof in his
grasp, sat down by him and hent the end of the kerchief in hand and
examined it, turning it over for some time. Nur al-Din sensed that
there was something and awoke; then, seeing the very man of whom Miriam
had warned him sitting by his side, cried out at him with a great cry
which startled him. Quoth the Frank, "What aileth thee to cry out thus
at us? Have we taken from thee aught?"; and quoth Nur al-Din, "By
Allah, O accursed, haddest thou taken aught from me, I would carry thee
before the Chief of Police!" Then said the Frank, "O Moslem, I conjure
thee by thy faith and by that wherein thou believest, inform me whence
thou haddest this kerchief;" and Nur al-Din replied, "Tis the handiwork
of my lady mother,"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventy-seventh Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Frank
asked Nur al-Din anent the maker of the kerchief, he answered, saying,
"In very sooth this kerchief is the handiwork of my mother, who made it
for me with her own hand." Quoth the Frank "Wilt thou sell it to me and
take ready money for it?," and quoth Nur al-Din, "By Allah, I will not
sell it to thee or to any else, for she made none other than it." "Sell
it to me and I will give thee to its price this very moment five
hundred dinars, money down; and let her who made it make thee another
and a finer." "I will not sell it at all, for there is not the like of
it in this city." "O my lord, wilt thou sell it for six hundred ducats
of fine gold?" And the Frank went on to add to his offer hundred by
hundred, till he bid nine hundred dinars; but Nur al-Din said, "Allah
will open to me otherwise than by my vending it. I will never sell it,
not for two thousand dinars nor more than that; no, never." The Frank
ceased not to tempt him with money, till he bid him a thousand dinars,
and the merchants present said, "We sell thee the kerchief at that
price:[FN#490] pay down the money." Quoth Nur al-Din, "I will not sell
it, I swear by Allah!"[FN#491] But one of the merchants said to him,
"Know thou, O my son, that the value of this kerchief is an hundred
dinars at most and that to an eager purchaser, and if this Frank pay
thee down a thousand for it, thy profit will be nine hundred dinars,
and what gain canst thou desire greater than this gain? Wherefore 'tis
my rede that thou sell him this kerchief at that price and bid her who
wrought it make thee other finer than it: so shalt thou profit nine
hundred dinars by this accursed Frank, the enemy of Allah and of The
Faith." Nur al-Din was abashed at the merchants and sold the kerchief
to the Frank, who, in their presence, paid him down the thousand
dinars, with which he would have returned to his handmaid to
congratulate her on what had passed; but the stranger said, "Harkye, O
company of merchants, stop my lord Nur al-Din, for you and he are my
guests this night. I have a jar of old Greek wine and a fat lamb, fresh
fruit, flowers and confections; wherefore do ye all cheer me with your
company to-night and not one of you tarry behind." So the merchants
said, "O my lord Nur al-Din, we desire that thou be with us on the like
of this night, so we may talk together, we and thou, and we pray thee,
of thy favour and bounty, to bear us company, so we and thou, may be
the guests of this Frank, for he is a liberal man." And they conjured
him by the oath of divorce[FN#492] and hindered him by main force from
going home. Then they rose forthright and shutting up their shops, took
Nur al-Din and fared with the Frank, who brought them to a goodly and
spacious saloon, wherein were two daďses. Here he made them sit and set
before them a scarlet tray-cloth of goodly workmanship and unique
handiwork, wroughten in gold with figures of breaker and broken, lover
and beloved, asker and asked, whereon he ranged precious vessels of
porcelain and crystal, full of the costliest confections, fruits and
flowers, and brought them a flagon of old Greek wine. Then he bade
slaughter a fat lamb and kindling fire, proceeded to roast of its flesh
and feed the merchants therewith and give them draughts of that wine,
winking at them the while to ply Nur al-Din with drink. Accordingly
they ceased not plying him with wine till he became drunken and took
leave of his wits; so when the Frank saw that he was drowned in liquor,
he said to him, "O my lord Nur al-Din, thou gladdenest us with thy
company to-night: welcome, and again welcome to thee." Then he engaged
him awhile in talk, till he could draw near to him, when he said, with
dissembling speech, "O my lord, Nur al-Din, wilt thou sell me thy
slave-girl, whom thou boughtest in presence of these merchants a year
ago for a thousand dinars? I will give thee at this moment five
thousand gold pieces for her and thou wilt thus make four thousand
ducats profit." Nur al-Din refused, but the Frank ceased not to ply him
with meat and drink and lure him with lucre, still adding to his
offers, till he bid him ten thousand dinars for her; whereupon Nur
al-Din, in his drunkenness, said before the merchants, "I sell her to
thee for ten thousand dinars: hand over the money." At this the Frank
rejoiced with joy exceeding and took the merchants to witness the sale.
They passed the night in eating and drinking, mirth and merriment, till
the morning, when the Frank cried out to his pages, saying, "Bring me
the money." So they brought it to him and he counted out ten thousand
dinars to Nur al-Din, saying, "O my lord, take the price of thy
slave-girl, whom thou soldest to me last night, in the presence of
these Moslem merchants." Replied Nur al-Din, "O accursed, I sold thee
nothing and thou liest anent me, for I have no slave-girls." Quoth the
Frank, "In very sooth thou didst sell her to me and these merchants
were witnesses to the bargain." Thereupon all said, "Yes, indeed! thou
soldest him thy slave-girl before us for ten thousand dinars, O Nur
al-Din and we will all bear witness against thee of the sale. Come,
take the money and deliver him the girl, and Allah will give thee a
better than she in her stead. Doth it irk thee, O Nur al-Din, that thou
boughtest the girl for a thousand dinars and hast enjoyed for a year
and a half her beauty and loveliness and taken thy fill of her converse
and her favours? Furthermore thou hast gained some ten thousand golden
dinars by the sale of the zones which she made thee every day and thou
soldest for twenty sequins, and after all this thou hast sold her again
at a profit of nine thousand dinars over and above her original price.
And withal thou deniest the sale and belittlest and makest difficulties
about the profit! What gain is greater than this gain and what profit
wouldst thou have profitabler than this profit? An thou love her thou
hast had thy fill of her all this time: so take the money and buy thee
another handsomer than she; or we will marry thee to one of our
daughters, lovelier than she, at a dowry of less than half this price,
and the rest of the money will remain in thy hand as capital." And the
merchants ceased not to ply him with persuasion and special arguments
till he took the ten thousand dinars, the price of the damsel, and the
Frank straightway fetched Kazis and witnesses, who drew up the contract
of sale by Nur al-Din of the handmaid hight Miriam the Girdle-girl.
Such was his case; but as regards the damsel's, she sat awaiting her
lord from morning till sundown and from sundown till the noon of night;
and when he returned not, she was troubled and wept with sore weeping.
The old druggist heard her sobbing and sent his wife, who went in to
her and finding her in tears, said to her, "O my lady, what aileth thee
to weep?" Said she, "O my mother, I have sat waiting the return of my
lord, Nur al-Din all day; but he cometh not, and I fear lest some one
have played a trick on him, to make him sell me, and he have fallen
into the snare and sold me."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventy-eighth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Miriam the
Girdle-girl said to the druggist's wife, "I am fearful lest some one
have been playing a trick on my lord to make him sell me, and he have
fallen into the snare and sold me." Said the other, "O my lady Miriam,
were they to give thy lord this hall full of gold as thy price, yet
would he not sell thee, for what I know of his love to thee. But, O my
lady, belike there be a company come from his parents at Cairo and he
hath made them an entertainment in the lodging where they alighted,
being ashamed to bring them hither, for that the place is not spacious
enough for them or because their condition is less than that he should
bring them to his own house; or belike he preferred to conceal thine
affair from them, so passed the night with them; and Inshallah!
to-morrow he will come to thee safe and sound. So burden not thy soul
with cark and care, O my lady, for of a certainty this is the cause of
his absence from thee last night and I will abide with thee this coming
night and comfort thee, until thy lord return to thee." So the
druggist's wife abode with her and cheered her with talk throughout the
dark hours and, when it was morning, Miriam saw her lord enter the
street followed by the Frank and amiddlemost a company of merchants, at
which sight her side-muscles quivered and her colour changed and she
fell a-shaking, as ship shaketh in mid-ocean for the violence of the
gale. When the druggist's wife saw this, she said to her, "O my lady
Miriam what aileth thee that I see thy case changed and thy face grown
pale and show disfeatured?" Replied she, "By Allah, O my lady, my heart
forebodeth me of parting and severance of union!" And she bemoaned
herself with the saddest sighs, reciting these couplets,[FN#493]

"Incline not to parting, I pray; * For bitter its savour is aye.
E'en the sun at his setting turns pale * To think he must part
     from the day;
And so, at his rising, for joy * Of reunion, he's radient and

Then Miriam wept passing sore wherethan naught could be more, making
sure of separation, and cried to the druggist's wife, "O my mother,
said I not to thee that my lord Nur al-Din had been tricked into
selling me? I doubt not but he hath sold me this night to yonder Frank,
albeit I bade him beware of him; but deliberation availeth not against
destiny. So the truth of my words is made manifest to thee." Whilst
they were talking, behold, in came Nur al-Din, and the damsel looked at
him and saw that his colour was changed and that he trembled and there
appeared on his face signs of grief and repentance: so she said to him,
"O my lord Nur al-Din, meseemeth thou hast sold me." Whereupon he wept
with sore weeping and groaned and lamented and recited these

"When e'er the Lord 'gainst any man,
Would fulminate some harsh decree,
And he be wise, and skilled to hear,
And used to see;
He stops his ears, and blinds his heart,
And from his brain ill judgment tears,
And makes it bald as 'twere a scalp,
Reft of its hairs;[FN#495]
Until the time when the whole man
Be pierced by this divine command;
Then He restores him intellect
To understand."

Then Nur al-Din began to excuse himself to his handmaid, saying, "By
Allah, O my lady Miriam, verily runneth the Reed with whatso Allah hath
decreed. The folk put a cheat on me to make me sell thee, and I fell
into the snare and sold thee. Indeed, I have sorely failed of my duty
to thee; but haply He who decreed our disunion will vouchsafe us
reunion." Quoth she, "I warned thee against this, for this it was I
dreaded." Then she strained him to her bosom and kissed him between the
eyes, reciting these couplets,

"Now, by your love! your love I'll ne'er forget, * Though lost my
     life for stress of pine and fret:
I weep and wail through livelong day and night * As moans the
     dove on sandhill-tree beset.
O fairest friends, your absence spoils my life; * Nor find I
     meeting-place as erst we met."

At this juncture, behold, the Frank came in to them and went up to
Miriam, to kiss her hands; but she dealt him a buffet with her palm on
the cheek, saying, "Avaunt, O accursed! Thou hast followed after me
without surcease, till thou hast cozened my lord into selling me! But O
accursed, all shall yet be well, Inshallah!" The Frank laughed at her
speech and wondered at her deed and excused himself to her, saying, "O
my lady Mirian, what is my offence? Thy lord Nur al-Din here sold thee
of his full consent and of his own free will. Had he loved thee, by the
right of the Messiah, he had not transgressed against thee! And had he
not fulfilled his desire of thee, he had not sold thee." Quoth one of
the poets,

'Whom I irk let him fly fro' me fast and faster * If I name his
     name I am no directer.
Nor the wide wide world is to me so narrow * That I act expecter
     to this rejecter.'"[FN#496]

Now this handmaid was the daughter of the King of France, the which is
a wide and spacious city,[FN#497] abounding in manufactures and
rarities and trees and flowers and other growths, and resembleth the
city of Constantinople; and for her going forth of her father's city
there was a wondrous cause and thereby hangeth a marvellous tale which
we will set out in due order, to divert and delight the
hearer.[FN#498]—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Seventy-ninth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the cause of
Miriam the Girdle-girl leaving her father and mother was a wondrous and
thereby hangeth a marvellous tale. She was reared with her father and
mother in honour and indulgence and learnt rhetoric and penmanship and
arithmetic and cavalarice and all manner crafts, such as broidery and
sewing and weaving and girdle-making and silk-cord making and
damascening gold on silver and silver on gold, brief all the arts both
of men and women, till she became the union-pearl of her time and the
unique gem of her age and day. Moreover, Allah (to whom belong Might
and Majesty!) had endowed her with such beauty and loveliness and
elegance and perfection of grace that she excelled therein all the folk
of her time, and the Kings of the isles sought her in marriage of her
sire, but he refused to give her to wife to any of her suitors, for
that he loved her with passing love and could not bear to be parted
from her a single hour. Moreover, he had no other daughter than
herself, albeit he had many sons, but she was dearer to him than all of
them. It fortuned one year that she fell sick of an exceeding sickness
and came nigh upon death, werefore she made a vow that, if she
recovered from her malady, she would make the pilgrimage to a certain
monastery, situate in such an island, which was high in repute among
the Franks, who used to make vows to it and look for a blessing
therefrom. When Miriam recovered from her sickness, she wished to
accomplish her vow anent the monastery and her sire despatched her to
the convent in a little ship, with sundry daughters of the
city-notables to wait upon her and patrician Knights to protect them
all. As they drew near the island, there came out upon them a ship of
the ships of the Moslems, champions of The Faith, warring in Allah's
way, who boarded the vessel and making prize of all therein, knights
and maidens, gifts and monies, sold their booty in the city of
Kayrawán.[FN#499] Miriam herself fell into the hands of a Persian
merchant, who was born impotent[FN#500] and for whom no woman had ever
discovered her nakedness; so he set her to serve him. Presently, he
fell ill and sickened well nigh unto death, and the sickness abode with
him two months, during which she tended him after the goodliest
fashion, till Allah made him whole of his malady, when he recalled her
tenderness and loving-kindness to him and the persistent zeal with
which she had nurst him and being minded to requite her the good
offices she had done him, said to her, "Ask a boon of me?" She said, "O
my lord, I ask of thee that thou sell me not but to the man of my
choice." He answered, "So be it. I guarantee thee. By Allah, O Miriam,
I will not sell thee but to him of whom thou shalt approve, and I put
thy sale in thine own hand." And she rejoiced herein with joy
exceeding. Now the Persian had expounded to her Al-Islam and she became
a Moslemah and learnt of him the rules of worship. Furthermore during
that period the Perisan had taught her the tenets of The Faith and the
observances incumbent upon her: he had made her learn the Koran by
heart and master somewhat of the theological sciences and the
traditions of the Prophet; after which, he brought her to
Alexandria-city and sold her to Nur al-Din, as we have before set out.
Meanwhile, when her father, the King of France, heard what had befallen
his daughter and her company, he saw Doomsday break and sent after her
ships full of knights and champions, horsemen and footmen; but they
fell not in any trace of her whom they sought in the Islands[FN#501] of
the Moslems; so all returned to him, crying out and saying,
"Well-away!" and "Ruin!" and "Well worth the day!" The King grieved for
her with exceeding grief and sent after her that one-eyed lameter,
blind of the left,[FN#502] for that he was his chief Wazir, a stubborn
tyrant and a froward devil,[FN#503] full of craft and guile, bidding
him make search for her in all the lands of the Moslems and buy her,
though with a ship-load of gold. So the accursed sought her, in all the
islands of the Arabs and all the cities of the Moslems, but found no
sign of her till he came to Alexandria-city where he made quest for her
and presently discovered that she was with Nur al-Din Ali the Cairene,
being directed to the trace of her by the kerchief aforesaid, for that
none could have wrought it in such goodly guise but she. Then he bribed
the merchants to help him in getting her from Nur al-Din and beguiled
her lord into selling her, as hath been already related. When he had
her in his possession, she ceased not to weep and wail: so he said to
her, "O my lady Miriam, put away from thee this mourning and grieving
and return with me to the city of thy sire, the seat of thy kingship
and the place of thy power and thy home, so thou mayst be among thy
servants and attendants and be quit of this abasement and this
strangerhood. Enough hath betided me of travail, of travel and of
disbursing monies on thine account, for thy father bade me buy thee
back, though with a shipload of gold; and now I have spent nigh a year
and a half in seeking thee." And he fell to kissing her hands and feet
and humbling himself to her; but the more he kissed and grovelled she
only redoubled in wrath against him, and said to him, "O accursed, may
Almighty Allah not vouchsafe thee to win thy wish!" Presently his pages
brought her a she-mule with gold-embroidered housings and mounting her
thereon, raised over her head a silken canopy, with staves of gold and
silver, and the Franks walked round about her, till they brought her
forth the city by the sea-gate,[FN#504] where they took boat with her
and rowing out to a great ship in harbor embarked therein. Then the
monocular Wazir cried out to the sailors, saying, "Up with the mast!"
So they set it up forthright and spreading the newly bent sails and the
colours manned the sweeps and put out to sea. Meanwhile Miriam
continued to gaze upon Alexandria, till it disappeared from her eyes,
when she fell a-weeping in her privacy with sore weeping.—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eightieth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Wazir of the Frankish King put out to sea in the ship bearing Miriam
the Girdle-girl, she gazed Alexandria-wards till the city was hidden
from her sight when she wailed and wept copious tears and recited these

"O dwelling of my friends say is there no return * Uswards? But
     what ken I of matters Allah made?
Still fare the ships of Severance, sailing hastily * And in my
     wounded eyelids tear have ta'en their stead,
For parting from a friend who was my wish and will * Healed every
     ill and every pain and pang allay'd.
Be thou, O Allah, substitute of me for him * Such charge some day
     the care of Thee shall not evade."

Then she could not refrain from weeping and wailing. So the
patrician[FN#505] knights came up to her and would have comforted her,
but she heeded not their consoling words, being distracted by the
claims of passion and love-longing. And she shed tears and moaned and
complained and recited these couplets,

"The tongue of Love within my vitals speaketh * Saying, 'This
     lover boon of Love aye seeketh!'
And burn my liver hottest coals of passion * And parting on my
     heart sore suffering wreaketh.
How shall I face this fiery love concealing * When fro' my
     wounded lids the tear aye leaketh?

In this plight Miriam abode during all the voyage; no peace was left
her at all nor would patience come at her call. Such was her case in
company with the Wazir, the monocular, the lameter; but as regards Nur
al-Din the Cairene, when the ship had sailed with Miriam, the world was
straitened upon him and he had neither peace nor patience. He returned
to the lodging where they twain had dwelt, and its aspect was black and
gloomy in his sight. Then he saw the métier wherewith she had been wont
to make the zones and her dress that had been upon her beauteous body:
so he pressed them to his breast, whilst the tears gushed from his eyes
and he recited these couplets,

"Say me, will Union after parting e'er return to be * After
     long-lasting torments, after hopeless misery?
Alas! Alas! what wont to be shall never more return * But grant
     me still return of dearest her these eyne may see.
I wonder me will Allah deign our parted lives unite * And will my
     dear one's plighted troth preserve with constancy!
Naught am I save the prey of death since parting parted us; * And
     will my friends consent that I a weird so deadly dree?
Alas my sorrow! Sorrowing the lover scant avails; * Indeed I melt
     away in grief and passion's ecstasy:
Past is the time of my delight when were we two conjoined: *
     Would Heaven I wot if Destiny mine esperance will degree!
Redouble then, O Heart, thy pains and, O mine eyes, o'erflow *
     With tears till not a tear remain within these eyne of me?
Again alas for loved ones lost and loss of patience eke! * For
     helpers fail me and my griefs are grown beyond decree.
The Lord of Threefold Worlds I pray He deign to me return * My
     lover and we meet as wont in joy and jubilee."

Then Nur al-Din wept with weeping galore than which naught could be
more; and peering into ever corner of the room, recited these two

"I view their traces and with pain I pine * And by their sometime
     home I weep and yearn;
And Him I pray who parting deigned decree * Some day He deign
     vouchsafe me their return!"

Then Nur al-Din sprang to his feet and locking the door of the house,
fared forth running at speed, to the sea shore whence he fixed his eyes
on the place of the ship which had carried off his Miriam whilst sighs
burst from his breast and tears from his lids as he recited these

"Peace be with you, sans you naught compensateth me * The near,
     the far, two cases only here I see:
I yearn for you at every hour and tide as yearns * For
     water-place wayfarer plodding wearily.
With you abide my hearing, heart and eyen-sight * And (sweeter
     than the honeycomb) your memory.
Then, O my Grief when fared afar your retinue * And bore that
     ship away my sole expectancy."

And Nur al-Din wept and wailed, bemoaned himself and complained, crying
out and saying, "O Miriam! O Miriam! Was it but a vision of thee I saw
in sleep or in the allusions of dreams?" And by reason of that which
grew on him of regrets, he recited these couplets,[FN#506]

"Mazed with thy love no more I can feign patience,
This heart of mine has held none dear but thee!
And if mine eye hath gazed on other's beauty,
Ne'er be it joyed again with sight of thee!
I've sworn an oath I'll ne'er forget to love thee,
And sad's this breast that pines to meet with thee!
Thou'st made me drink a love-cup full of passion,
Blest time! When I may give the draught to thee!
Take with thee this my form where'er thou goest,
And when thou 'rt dead let me be laid near thee!
Call on me in my tomb, my bones shall answer
And sigh responses to a call from thee!
If it were asked, 'What wouldst thou Heaven should order?'
'His will,' I answer, 'First, and then what pleases thee.'"

As Nur al-Din was in this case, weeping and crying out, "O Miriam! O
Miriam!" behold, an old man landed from a vessel and coming up to him,
saw him shedding tears and heard him reciting these verses,

"O Maryam of beauty[FN#507] return, for these eyne * Are as
     densest clouds railing drops in line:
Ask amid mankind and my railers shall say * That mine eyelids are
     drowning these eyeballs of mine."

Said the old man, "O my son, meseems thou weepest for the damsel who
sailed yesterday with the Frank?" When Nur al-Din heard these words of
the Shaykh he fell down in a swoon and lay for a long while without
life; then, coming to himself, he wept with sore weeping and improvised
these couplets,

"Shall we e'er be unite after severance-tide * And return in the
     perfectest cheer to bide?
In my heart indeed is a lowe of love * And I'm pained by the
     spies who my pain deride:
My days I pass in amaze distraught, * And her image a-nights I
     would see by side:
By Allah, no hour brings me solace of love * And how can it when
     makebates vex me and chide?
A soft-sided damsel of slenderest waist * Her arrows of eyne on
     my heart hath plied?
Her form is like Bán[FN#508]-tree branch in garth * Shame her
     charms the sun who his face most hide:
Did I not fear God (be He glorified!) * 'My Fair be glorified!'
     Had I cried."

The old man looked at him and noting his beauty and grace and symmetry
and the fluency of his tongue and the seductiveness of his charms, had
ruth on him and his heart mourned for his case. Now that Shaykh was the
captain of a ship, bound to the damsel's city, and in this ship were a
hundred Moslem merchants, men of the Saving Faith; so he said to Nur
al-Din, "Have patience and all will yet be well; I will bring thee to
her an it be the will of Allah, extolled and exalted be He!"—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eighty-first Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the old
skipper said to Nur al-Din, "I will bring thee to her, Inshallah!" the
youth asked, "When shall we set out?" and the other said, "Come but
three days more and we will depart in peace and prosperity." Nur al-Din
rejoiced at the captain's words with joy exceeding and thanked him for
his bounty and benevolence. Then he recalled the days of love-liesse
dear and union with his slave-girl without peer, and he shed bitter
tears and recited these couplets,

"Say, will to me and you the Ruthful union show * My lords! Shall
     e'er I win the wish of me or no?
A visit-boon by you will shifty Time vouchsafe? * And seize your
     image eye-lids which so hungry grow?
With you were Union to be sold, I fain would buy; * But ah, I see
     such grace doth all my means outgo!"

Then Nur al-Din went forthright to the market and bought what he needed
of viaticum and other necessaries for the voyage and returned to the
Rais, who said to him, "O my son, what is that thou hast with thee?"
said he, "My provisions and all whereof I have need for the voyage."
Thereupon quoth the old man, laughing, "O my son, art thou going
a-pleasuring to Pompey's Pillar?[FN#509] Verily, between thee and that
thou seekest is two months' journey and the wind be fair and the
weather favourable." Then he took of him somewhat of money and going to
the bazar, bought him a sufficiency of all that he needed for the
voyage and filled him a large earthen jar[FN#510] with fresh water. Nur
al-Din abode in the ship three days until the merchants had made an end
of their precautions and preparations and embarked, when they set sail
and putting out to sea, fared on one-and-fifty days. After this, there
came out upon them corsairs,[FN#511] pirates who sacked the ship and
taking Nur al-Din and all therein prisoners, carried them to the city
of France and paraded them before the King, who bade cast them into
jail, Nur al-Din amongst the number. As they were being led to prison
the galleon[FN#512] arrived with the Princess Miriam and the one-eyed
Wazir, and when it made the harbour, the lameter landed and going up to
the King gave him the glad news of his daughter's safe return:
whereupon they beat the kettledrums for good tidings and decorated the
city after the goodliest fashion. Then the King took horse, with all
his guards and lords and notables and rode down to the sea to meet her.
The moment the ship cast anchor she came ashore, and the King saluted
her and embraced her and mounting her on a bloodsteed, bore her to the
palace, where her mother received her with open arms, and asked her of
her case and whether she was a maid as before or whether she had become
a woman carnally known by man.[FN#513] She replied, "O my mother, how
should a girl, who hath been sold from merchant to merchant in the land
of Moslems, a slave commanded, abide a virgin? The merchant who bought
me threatened me with the bastinado and violenced me and took my
maidenhead, after which he sold me to another and he again to a third."
When the Queen heard these her words, the light in her eyes became
night and she repeated her confession to the King who was chagrined
thereat and his affair was grievous to him. So he expounded her case to
his Grandees and Patricians[FN#514] who said to him, "O King, she hath
been defiled by the Moslems and naught will purify her save the
striking off of an hundred Mohammedan heads." Whereupon the King sent
for the True Believers he had imprisoned; and they decapitated them,
one after another, beginning with the captain, till none was left save
Nur al-Din. They tare off a strip of his skirt and binding his eyes
therewith, led him to the rug of blood and were about to smite his
neck, when behold, an ancient dame came up to the King at that very
moment and said, "O my lord, thou didst vow to bestow upon each and
every church five Moslem captives, to help us in the service thereof,
so Allah would restore thee thy daughter the Princess Miriam; and now
she is restored to thee, so do thou fulfil thy vow." The King replied,
"O my mother, by the virtue of the Messiah and the Veritable Faith,
there remaineth to me of the prisoners but this one captive, whom they
are about to put to death: so take him with thee to help in the service
of the church, till there come to me more prisoners of the Moslems,
when I will send thee other four. Hadst thou come earlier, before they
hewed off the heads of these, I had given thee as many as thou wouldest
have." The old woman thanked the King for his boon and wished him
continuance of life, glory and prosperity. Then without loss of time
she went up to Nur al-Din, whom she raised from the rug of blood; and,
looking narrowly at him saw a comely youth and a dainty, with a
delicate skin and a face like the moon at her full; whereupon she
carried him to the church and said to him, "O my son, doff these
clothes which are upon thee, for they are fit only for the service of
the Sultan."[FN#515] So saying the ancient dame brought him a gown and
hood of black wool and a broad girdle,[FN#516] in which she clad and
cowled him; and, after binding on his belt, bade him do the service of
the church. Accordingly, he served the church seven days, at the end of
which time behold, the old woman came up to him and said, "O Moslem,
don thy silken dress and take these ten dirhams and go out forthright
and divert thyself abroad this day, and tarry not here a single moment,
lest thou lose thy life." Quoth he, "What is to do, O my mother?"; and
quoth she, "Know, O my son, that the King's daughter, the Princess
Miriam the Girdle-girl, hath a mind to visit the church this day, to
seek a blessing by pilgrimage and to make oblation thereto, a
douceur[FN#517] of thank-offering for her deliverance from the land of
the Moslems and in fulfilment of the vows she vowed to the Messiah, so
he would save her. With her are four hundred damsels, not one of whom
but is perfect in beauty and loveliness and all of them are daughters
of Wazirs and Emirs and Grandees: they will be here during this very
hour and if their eyes fall on thee in this church, they will hew thee
in pieces with swords." Thereupon Nur al-Din took the ten dirhams from
the ancient dame, and donning his own dress, went out to the bazar and
walked about the city and took his pleasure therein, till he knew its
highways and gates,—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eighty-second Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Nur al-Din,
after donning his own dress and taking the ten dirhams from the ancient
dame, fared forth to the market streets and wandered about a while till
he knew every quarter of the city, after which he returned to the
church[FN#518] and saw the Princess Miriam the Girdle-girl, daughter of
the King of France come up to the fane, attended by four hundred
damsels, high-bosomed maids like moons, amongst whom was the daughter
of the one-eyed Wazir and those of the Emirs and Lords of the realm;
and she walked in their midst as she were moon among stars. When his
eyes fell upon her Nur al-Din could not contain himself, but cried out
from the core of his heart, "O Miriam! O Miriam!" When the damsels
heard his outcry they ran at him with swords shining bright like
flashes of leven-light and would have slain him forthright. But the
Princess turned and looking on him, knew him with fullest knowledge,
and said to her maidens, "Leave this youth; doubtless he is mad, for
the signs of madness be manifest on his face." When Nur al-Din heard
this, he uncovered his head and rolled his eyes and made signs with his
hands and twisted his legs, foaming the while at the mouth. Quoth the
Princess, "Said I not that the poor youth was mad? Bring him to me and
stand off from him, that I may hear what he saith; for I know the
speech of the Arabs and will look into his case and see if his madness
admit of cure or not." So they laid hold of him and brought him to her;
after which they withdrew to a distance and she said to him, "Hast thou
come hither on my account and ventured thy life for my sake and
feignest thyself mad?" He replied, "O my lady, hast thou not heard the
saying of the poet?,[FN#519]

'Quoth they, 'Thou'rt surely raving mad for her thou lov'st;' and
     I, 'There is no pleasantness in life but for the mad,'
Compare my madness with herself for whom I rave; if she Accord
     therewith, then blame me not for that which I aby.'"

Miriam replied, "By Allah, O Nur al-Din, indeed thou hast sinned
against thyself, for I warned thee of this before it befell thee: yet
wouldst thou not hearken to me, but followedst thine own lust: albeit
that whereof I gave thee to know I learnt not by means of inspiration
nor physiognomy[FN#520] nor dreams, but by eye-witness and very sight;
for I saw the one-eyed Wazir and knew that he was not come to
Alexandria but in quest of me." Said he, "O my lady Miriam, we seek
refuge with Allah from the error of the intelligent!"[FN#521] Then his
affliction redoubled on him and he recited this saying,[FN#522]

"Pass o'er my fault, for 'tis the wise man's wont
Of other's sins to take no harsh account;
And as all crimes have made my breast their site,
So thine all shapes of mercy should unite.
Who from above would mercy seek to know,
Should first be merciful to those below."

Then Nur al-Din and Princess Miriam ceased not from lovers' chiding
which to trace would be tedious, relating each to other that which had
befallen them and reciting verses and making moan, one to other, of the
violence of passion and the pangs of pine and desire, whilst the tears
ran down their cheeks like rivers, till there was left them no strength
to say a word and so they continued till day deprated and night
darkened. Now the Princess was clad in a green dress, purfled with red
gold and broidered with pearls and gems which enhanced her beauty and
loveliness and inner grace; and right well quoth the poet of

"Like the full moon she shineth in garments all of green, With
     loosened 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.
I am the pure white silver, ay, and the gold wherewith The
     bondsmen from strait prison and dour releasčd been.'
Quoth I, 'I'm all with rigours consumed;' but 'On a rock,' Said
     she, 'such as my heart is, thy plaints are wasted clean.'
'Even if thy heart,' I answered, 'be rock in very deed, Yet hath
     God caused fair water well from the rock, I ween.'"

And when night darkened on them the Lady Miriam went up to her women
and asked them, "Have ye locked the door?"; and they answered, "Indeed
we have locked it." So she took them and went with them to a place
called the Chapel of the Lady Mary the Virgin, Mother of Light, because
the Nazarenes hold that there are her heart and soul. The girls betook
themselves to prayer for blessings from above and circuited all the
church; and when they had made an end of their visitation, the Princess
turned to them and said, "I desire to pass the night alone in the
Virgin's chapel and seek a blessing thereof, for that yearning after it
hath betided me, by reason of my long absence in the land of the
Moslems; and as for you, when ye have made an end of your visitation,
do ye sleep whereso ye will." Replied they, "With love and goodly gree:
be it as thou wilt!"; and leaving her alone in the chapel, dispersed
about the church and slept. The Lady Miriam waited till they were out
of sight and hearing, then went in search of Nur al-Din, whom she found
sitting in a corner on live coals, awaiting her. He rose and kissed her
hands and feet and she sat down and seated him by her side. Then she
pulled off all that was upon her of raiment and ornaments and fine
linen and taking Nur al-Din in her arms strained him to her bosom. And
they ceased not, she and he, from kissing and clipping and strumming to
the tune of "hocus-pocus,"[FN#524] saying the while, "How short are the
nights of Union and the nights of Disunion how long are they!" and
reciting these verses,

"O Night of Union, Time's virginal prized, * White star of the
     Nights with auroral dyes,
Thou garrest Dawn after Noon to rise * Say art thou Kohl in
     Morning's Eyes,
Or wast thou Slumber to bleared eye lief?
O Night of Parting, how long thy stay * Whose latest hours aye
     the first portray,
This endless circle that noways may * Show breach till the coming
     of Judgment-day,
Day when dies the lover of parting-grief."[FN#525]

As they were in this mighty delight and joy engrossing they heard one
of the servants of the Saint[FN#526] smite the gong[FN#527] upon the
roof, to call the folk to the rites of their worship, and he was even
as saith the poet,

"I saw him strike the gong and asked of him straightway, * Who
     made the Fawn[FN#528] at striking going so knowing, eh?'
And to my soul, 'What smiting irketh thee the more— * Striking
     the gong or striking note of going,[FN#529] say?'"

—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eighty-third Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Nur al-Din and
Miriam the Girdle-girl rose forthwith and donned her clothes and
ornaments; but this was grievous to Nur al-Din, and his gladness was
troubled; the tears streamed from his eyes and he recited these

"I ceasčd not to kiss that cheek with budding roses dight * And
     eyes down cast and bit the same with most emphatic bite;
Until we were in gloria[FN#530] and lay him down the spy * And
     sank his eyes within his brain declining further sight:
And struck the gongs as they that had the charge of them were
     like * Muezzin crying duty-prayers in Allah's book indite.
Then rose she up right hastily and donned the dress she'd doffed
     * Sore fearing lest a shooting-star[FN#531] upon our heads
And cried, 'O wish and will of me, O end of all my hopes! *
     Behold the morning comes to us in brightest whitest light.'
I swear if but one day of rule were given to my life * And I were
     made an Emperor of majesty and might,
Adown I'd break the buttresses of churches one and all * And by
     their slaughter rid the earth of every shaveling wight."

Then the Lady Miriam pressed him to her bosom and kissed his cheek and
asked him, "O Nur al-Din, how long hast thou been in this town?" "Seven
days." "Hast thou walked about in it, and dost thou know its ways and
issues and its sea-gates and land gates?" "Yes!" "Knowest thou the way
to the offertory-chest[FN#532] of the church?" "Yes!" "Since thou
knowest all this, as soon as the first third[FN#533] of the coming
night is over, go to the offertory-chest and take thence what thou
wishest and willest. Then open the door that giveth upon the
tunnel[FN#534] leading to the sea, and go down to the harbour, where
thou wilt find a little ship and ten men therein, and when the Rais
shall see thee, he will put out his hand to thee. Give him thy hand and
he will take thee up into the ship, and do thou wait there till I come
to thee. But 'ware and have a care lest sleep overtake thee this night,
or thou wilt repent whenas repentance shall avail thee naught." Then
the Princess farewelled him and going forth from Nur al-Din, aroused
from sleep her women and the rest of the damsels, with whom she betook
herself to the church door and knocked; whereupon the ancient dame
opened to her and she went forth and found the knights and varlets
standing without. They brought her a dapple she-mule and she mounted:
whereupon they raised over her head a canopy[FN#535] with curtains of
silk, and the knights took hold of the mule's halter. Then the
guards[FN#536] encompassed her about, drawn brand in hand, and fared on
with her, followed by her, till they brought her to the palace of the
King her father. Meanwhile, Nur al-Din abode concealed behind the
curtain, under cover of which Miriam and he had passed the night, till
it was broad day, when the main door was opened and the church became
full of people. Then he mingled with the folk and accosted the old
Prioress, the guardian[FN#537] of the shrine, who said to him, "Where
didst thou lie last night?" Said he, "In the town as thou badest me."
Quoth she, "O my son, thou hast done the right thing; for, hadst thou
nighted in the Church, she had slain thee on the foulest wise." And
quoth he, "Praised be Allah who hath delivered me from the evil of this
night!" Then he busied himself with the service of the church and
ceased not busying till day departed and night with darkness starkened
when he arose and opened the offertory-chest and took thence of jewels
whatso was light of weight and weighty of worth. Then he tarried till
the first watch of the night was past, when he made his way to the
postern of the tunnel and opening it, went forth, calling on Allah for
protection, and ceased not faring on until, after finding and opening
the door, he came to the sea. Here he discovered the vessel moored to
the shore near the gate; and her skipper, a tall old man of comely
aspect with a long beard, standing in the waist, his ten men being
ranged before him. Nur al-Din gave him his hand, as Miriam had bidden
him, and the captain took it and pulling him on board of the ship cried
out to his crew, saying, "Cast off the moorings and put out to sea with
us, ere day break." Said one of the ten, "O my lord the Captain, how
shall we put out now, when the King hath notified us that to-morrow he
will embark in this ship and go round about the sea, being fearful for
his daughter Miriam from the Moslem thieves?" But the Rais cried out at
them saying, "Woe to you, O accursed; Dare ye gainsay me and bandy
words with me?" So saying the old captain bared his blade and with it
dealt the sailor who had spoken a thrust in the throat, that the steel
came out gleaming from his nape; and quoth another of the sailors,
"What hath our comrade done of crime, that thou shouldst cut his
throat?" Thereupon the captain clapped hand to sword and smote off the
speaker's head, nor did he leave smiting the rest of the sailors till
he had slain them all, one after other, and cast the ten bodies ashore.
Then he turned to Nur al-Din and cried out at him with a terrible great
cry, that made him tremble, saying, "Go down and pull up the
mooring-stake." Nur al-Din feared lest he should strike him also with
the sword; so he sprang up and leapt ashore and pulling up the stake
jumped aboard again, swiftlier than the dazzling leven. The captain
ceased not to bid him do this and do that and tack and wear hither and
thither and look at the stars, and Nur al-Din did all that he bade him,
with heart a-quaking for affright; whilst he himself spread the sails,
and the ship fared with the twain into the dashing sea, swollen with
clashing billows.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eighty-fourth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the old
skipper had made sail he drave the ship, aided by Nur al-Din, into the
dashing sea before a favouring gale. Meanwhile, Nur al-Din held on to
the tackle immersed in deep thought, and drowned in the sea of
solicitude, knowing not what was hidden for him in the future; and
whenever he looked at the captain, his heart quaked and he knew not
whither the Rais went with him. He abode thus, preoccupied with care
and doubt, till it was high day, when he looked at the skipper and saw
him take hold of his long beard and pull at it, whereupon it came off
in his hand and Nur al-Din, examining it, saw that it was but a false
beard glued on. So he straitly considered that same Rais, and behold,
it was the Princess Miriam, his mistress and the dearling of his heart,
who had contrived to waylay the captain and slay him and skinned off
his beard, which she had stuck on to her own face. At this Nur al-Din
was transported for joy, and his breast broadened and he marvelled at
her prowess and the stoutness of her heart and said to her, "Welcome, O
my hope and my desire and the end of mine every wish!" Then love and
gladness agitated him and he made sure of winning to his hopes and his
expectancy; wherefore he broke out into song and chanted these

"To all who unknown my love for the May * From whom Fate disjoins
     me O say, I pray,
'Ask my kith and kin of my love that aye * Ensweetens my verses
     to lovely lay:
          For the loss of the tribesmen my life o'er sway!'

Their names when named heal all malady; * Cure and chase from
     heart every pain I dree:
And my longings for love reach so high degree * That my Sprite is
     maddened each morn I see,
     And am grown of the crowd to be saw and say.

No blame in them will I e'er espy: * No! nor aught of solace sans
     them descry:
Your love hath shot me with pine, and I * Bear in heart a flame
     that shall never die,
          But fire my liver with fiery ray.

All folk my sickness for marvel score * That in darkest night I
     wake evermore
What ails them to torture this heart forlore * And deem right for
     loving my blood t' outpour:
          And yet—how justly unjust are they!

Would I wot who 'twas could obtain of you * To wrong a youth
     who's so fain of you:
By my life and by Him who made men of you * And the spy tell
     aught I complain of you
          He lies, by Allah, in foulest way!

May the Lord my sickness never dispel, * Nor ever my heart of its
     pains be well,
What day I regret that in love I fell * Or laud any land but
     wherein ye dwell:
          Wring my heart and ye will or make glad and gay!

I have vitals shall ever be true to you * Though racked by the
     rigours not new to you
Ere this wrong and this right I but sue to you: * Do what you
     will to thrall who to you
          Shall ne'er grudge his life at your feet to lay."

When Nur al-Din ceased to sing, the Princess Miriam marvelled at his
song and thanked him therefor, saying, "Whoso's case is thus it
behoveth him to walk the ways of men and never do the deed of curs and
cowards." Now she was stout of heart and cunning in the sailing of
ships over the salt sea, and she knew all the winds and their shiftings
and every course of the main. So Nur al-Din said, "O my lady, hadst
thou prolonged this case on me,[FN#538] I had surely died for stress of
affright and chagrin, more by token of the fire of passion and
love-longing and the cruel pangs of separation." She laughed at his
speech and rising without stay or delay brought out somewhat of food
and liquor; and they ate and drank and enjoyed themselves and made
merry. Then she drew forth rubies and other gems and precious stones
and costly trinkets of gold and silver and all manner things of price,
light of weight and weighty of worth, which she had taken from the
palace of her sire and his treasuries, and displayed them to Nur
al-Din, who rejoiced therein with joy exceeding. All this while the
wind blew fair for them and merrily sailed the ship nor ceased sailing
till they drew near the city of Alexandria and sighted its landmarks,
old and new, and Pompey's Pillar. When they made the port, Nur al-Din
landed forthright and securing the ship to one of the
Fulling-Stones,[FN#539] took somewhat of the treasures that Miriam had
brought with her, and said to her, "O my lady, tarry in the ship,
against I return and carry thee up into the city in such way as I
should wish and will." Quoth she, "It behoveth that this be done
quickly, for tardiness in affairs engendereth repentance." Quoth he,
"There is no tardiness in me;" and, leaving her in the ship, went up
into the city to the house of the druggist his father's old fried, to
borrow of his wife for Miriam veil and mantilla, and walking boots and
petticoat-trousers after the usage of the women of Alexandria,
unknowing that there was appointed to betide him of the shifts of Time,
the Father of Wonders, that which was far beyond his reckoning. Thus it
befel Nur al-Din and Miriam the Girdle-girl; but as regards her sire
the King of France, when he arose in the morning, he missed his
daughter and questioned her women and her eunuchs of her. Answered
they, "O our lord, she went out last night, to go to Church and after
that we have no tidings of her." But, as the King talked with them,
behold, there arose so great a clamour of cries below the palace, that
the place rang thereto, and he said, "What may be the news?" The folk
replied, "O King, we have found ten men slain on the sea-shore, and the
royal yacht is missing. Moreover we saw the postern of the Church,
which giveth upon the tunnel leading to the sea, wide open; and the
Moslem prisoner, who served in the Church, is missing." Quoth the King,
"An my ship be lost, without doubt or dispute."—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eighty-fifth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the King
of France missed his daughter they brought him tidings of her, saying,
"Thy yacht is lost"; and he replied, "An the craft be lost, without
dispute or doubt my daughter is in it." So he summoned without stay or
delay the Captain of the Port and cried out at him, saying, "By the
virtue[FN#540] of the Messiah and the Faith which is no liar, except
thou and thy fighting men overtake my ship forthright and bring it back
to me, with those who are therein, I will do thee die the foulest of
deaths and make a terrible example of thee!" Thereupon the captain went
out from before him, trembling, and betook himself to the ancient dame
of the Church, to whom said he, 'Heardest thou aught from the captive,
that was with thee, anent his native land and what countryman he was?"
And she answered, "He used to say, I come from the town of Alexandria."
When the captain heard the old woman's words he returned forthright to
the port and cried out to the sailors, "Make ready and set sail." So
they did his bidding and straightway putting out to sea, fared night
and day till they sighted the city of Alexandria at the very time when
Nur al-Din landed, leaving the Princess in the ship. They soon espied
the royal yacht and knew her; so they moored their own vessel at a
distance therefrom and putting off in a little frigate they had with
them, which drew but two cubits of water and in which were an hundred
fighting-men, amongst them the one-eyed Wazir (for that he was a
stubborn tyrant and a froward devil and a wily thief, none could avail
against his craft, as he were Abu Mohammed al-Battál[FN#541]), they
ceased not rowing till they reached the bark and boarding her, all at
once, found none therein save the Princess Miriam. So they took her and
the ship, and returning to their own vessel, after they had landed and
waited a long while,[FN#542] set sail forthright for the land of the
Franks, having accomplished their errand, without a fight or even
drawing sword. The wind blew fair for them and they sailed on, without
ceasing and with all diligence, till they reached the city of France
and landing with the Princess Miriam carried her to her father, who
received her, seated on the throne of his Kingship. As soon as he saw
her, he said to her, "Woe to thee, O traitress! What ailed thee to
leave the faith of thy fathers and forefathers and the safeguard of the
Messiah, on whom is our reliance, and follow after the faith of the
Vagrants,[FN#543] to wit, the faith of Al-Islam, the which arose with
the sword against the Cross and the Images?" Replied Miriam, "I am not
at fault, I went out by night to the church, to visit the Lady Mary and
seek a blessing of her, when there fell upon me unawares a band of
Moslem robbers, who gagged me and bound me fast and carrying me on
board the barque, set sail with me for their own country. However, I
beguiled them and talked with them of their religion, till they loosed
my bonds; and ere I knew it thy men overtook me and delivered me. And
by the virtue of the Messiah and the Faith which is no liar and the
Cross and the Crucified thereon, I rejoiced with joy exceeding in my
release from them and my bosom broadened and I was glad for my
deliverance from the bondage of the Moslems!" Rejoined the King, "Thou
liest, O whore! O adultress! By the virtue of that which is revealed of
prohibition and permission in the manifest Evangel,[FN#544] I will
assuredly do thee die by the foulest of deaths and make thee the vilest
of examples! Did it not suffice thee to do as thou didst the first time
and put off thy lies upon us, but thou must return upon us with thy
deceitful inventions?" Thereupon the King bade kill her and crucify her
over the palace gate; but, at that moment the one-eyed Wazir, who had
long been enamoured of the Princess, came in to him and said, "Ho King!
slay her not, but give her to me to wife, and I will watch over her
with the utmost warding, nor will I go in unto her, till I have built
her a palace of solid stone, exceeding high of foundation, so no
thieves may avail to climb up to its terrace-roof; and when I have made
an end of building it, I will sacrifice thirty Moslems before the gate
thereof, as an expiatory offering to the Messiah for myself and for
her." The King granted his request and bade the priests and monks and
patriarchs marry the Princess to him; so they did his bidding,
whereupon he bade set about building a strong and lofty palace,
befitting her rank and the workmen fell to work upon it. On this wise
it betided the Princess Miriam and her sire and the one-eyed Wazir; but
as regards Nur al-Din, when he came back with the petticoat-trousers
and mantilla and walking boots and all the attire of Alexandrian women
which he had borrowed of the druggist's wife, he "found the air void
and the fane afar[FN#545]";—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eighty-sixth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Nur
al-Din, "found the air void[FN#546] and the fane afar," his heart sank
within him and he wept floods of tears and recited these

"The phantom of Soada came by night to wake me towards morning
     while my companions were sleeping in the desert:
But when we awoke to behold the nightly phantom, I saw the air
     vacant, and the place of visitation distant."

Then Nur al-Din walked on along the sea-shore and turned right and
left, till he saw folk gathered together on the beach and heard them
say, "O Moslems, there remaineth no honour to Alexandria-city, since
the Franks enter it and snatch away those who are therein and return to
their own land, at their leisure[FN#548] nor pursued of any of the
Moslems or fighters for the Faith!" Quoth Nur al-Din to them, "What is
to do?"; and quoth they, "O my son, one of the ships of the Franks,
full of armed men, came down but now upon the port and carried off a
ship which was moored here, with her that was therein, and made
unmolested for their own land." Nur al-Din fell down a-swoon, on
hearing these words; and when he recovered they questioned him of his
case and he told them all that had befallen him first and last;
whereupon they all took to reviling him and railing at him, saying,
"Why couldst thou not bring her up into the town without mantilla and
muffler?" And all and each of the folk gave him some grievous word,
berating him with sharp speech, and shooting at him some shaft of
reproach, albeit one said, "Let him be; that which hath befallen him
sufficeth him," till he again fell down in a fainting-fit. And behold,
at this moment, up came the old druggist, who, seeing the folk gathered
together, drew near to learn what was the matter and found Nur al-Din
lying a-swoon in their midst. So he sat down at his head and arousing
him, said to him as soon as he recovered, "O my son, what is this case
in which I see thee?" Nur al-Din said, "O uncle, I had brought back in
a barque my lost slave-girl from her father's city, suffering patiently
all I suffered of perils and hardships; and when I came with her to
this port, I made the vessel fast to the shore and leaving her therein,
repaired to thy dwelling and took of thy consort what was needful for
her, that I might bring her up into the town; but the Franks came and
capturing barque and damsel made off unhindered, and returned to their
own land." Now when the Shaykh, the druggist, heard this, the light in
his eyes became night and he grieved with sore grieving for Nur al-Din
and said to him, "O my son, why didst thou not bring her out of the
ship into the city without mantilla? But speech availeth not at this
season; so rise, O my son, and come up with me to the city; haply Allah
will vouchsafe thee a girl fairer than she, who shall console thee for
her. Alhamdolillah-praised be Allah-who hath not made thee lose aught
by her! Nay, thou hast gained by her. And bethink thee, O my son, that
Union and Disunion are in the hands of the Most High King." Replied Nur
al-Din, "By Allah, O uncle, I can never be consoled for her loss nor
will I ever leave seeking her, though on her account I drink the cup of
death!" Rejoined the druggist, "O my son, and what art thou minded to
do?" Quoth Nur al-Din, "I am minded to return to the land of the
Franks[FN#549] and enter the city of France and emperil myself there;
come what may, loss of life or gain of life." Quoth the druggist, "O my
son, there is an old saw, 'Not always doth the crock escape the shock';
and if they did thee no hurt the first time, belike they will slay thee
this time, more by token that they know thee now with full knowledge."
Quoth Nur al-Din, "O my uncle, let me set out and be slain for the love
of her straightway and not die of despair for her loss by slow
torments." Now as Fate determined there was then a ship in port ready
to sail, for its passengers had made an end of their affairs[FN#550]
and the sailors had pulled up the mooring-stakes, when Nur al-Din
embarked in her. So they shook out their canvas and relying on the
Compassionate, put out to sea and sailed many days, with fair wind and
weather, till behold, they fell in with certain of the Frank cruisers,
which were scouring those waters and seizing upon all ships they saw,
in their fear for the King's daughter from the Moslem corsairs: and as
often as they made prize of a Moslem ship, they carried all her people
to the King of France, who put them to death in fulfilment of the vow
he had vowed on account of his daughter Miriam. So, seeing the ship
wherein was Nur al-Din they boarded her and taking him and the rest of
the company prisoners, to the number of an hundred Moslems, carried
them to the King and set them between his hands. He bade cut their
throats. Accordingly they slaughtered them all forthwith, one after
another, till there was none left but Nur al-Din, whom the headsman had
left to the last, in pity of his tender age and slender shape. When the
King saw him, he knew him right well and said to him, "Art thou not Nur
al-Din, who was with us before?" Said he, "I was never with thee: and
my name is not Nur al-Din, but Ibrahim." Rejoined the King; "Thou
liest, thou art Nur al-Din, he whom I gave to the ancient dame the
Prioress, to help her in the service of the church." But Nur al-Din
replied, "O my lord, my name is Ibrahim." Quoth the King, "Wait a
while," and bade his knights fetch the old woman forthright, saying,
"When she cometh and seeth thee, she will know an thou be Nur al-Din or
not." At this juncture, behold, in came the one-eyed Wazir who had
married the Princess and kissing the earth before the King said to him,
"Know, O King, that the palace is finished; and thou knowest how I
vowed to the Messiah that, when I had made an end of building it, I
would cut thirty Moslems' throats before its doors; wherefore I am come
to take them of thee, that I may sacrifice them and so fulfil my vow to
the Messiah. They shall be at my charge, by way of loan, and whenas
there come prisoners to my hands, I will give thee other thirty in lieu
of them." Replied the King, 'By the virtue of the Messiah and the Faith
which is no liar, I have but this one captive left!" And he pointed to
Nur al-Din, saying, "Take him and slaughter him at this very moment and
the rest I will send thee when there come to my hands other prisoners
of the Moslems." Thereupon the one-eyed Wazir arose and took Nur al-Din
and carried him to his palace, thinking to slaughter him on the
threshold of the gate; but the painters said to him, "O my lord, we
have two days' painting yet to do: so bear with us and delay to cut the
throat of this captive, till we have made an end of our work; haply by
that time the rest of the thirty will come, so thou mayst despatch them
all at one bout and accomplish thy vow in a single day." Thereupon the
Wazir bade imprison Nur al-Din.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eighty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Wazir
bade imprison Nur al-Din, they carried him to the stables and left him
there in chains, hungering and thirsting and making moan for himself;
for indeed he saw death face to face. Now it fortuned, by the ordinance
of Destiny and fore-ordained Fate, that the King had two stallions, own
brothers,[FN#551] such as the Chosroe Kings might sigh in vain to
possess themselves of one of them; they were called Sábik and
Láhik[FN#552] and one of them was pure silvern white while the other
was black as the darksome night. And all the Kings of the isles had
said, "Whoso stealeth us one of these stallions, we will give him all
he seeketh of red gold and pearls and gems;" but none could avail to
steal them. Now one of them fell sick of a jaundice and there came a
whiteness over his eyes;[FN#553] whereupon the King gathered together
all the farriers in the city to treat him; but they all failed of his
cure. Presently the Wazir came into the King; and finding him troubled
because of the horse, thought to do away his concern and said to him,
"O King, give me the stallion and I will cure him," The King consented
and caused carry the horse to the stable wherein Nur al-Din lay
chained; but, when he missed his brother, he cried out with an
exceeding great cry and neighed, so that he affrighted all the folk.
The Wazir, seeing that he did thus but because he was parted from his
brother, went to tell the King, who said, "If this, which is but a
beast, cannot brook to be parted from his brother, how should it be
with those that have reason?" And he bade his grooms take the other
horse and put him with his brother in the Wazir's stables, saying,
"Tell the Minister that the two stallions be a gift from me to him, for
the sake of my daughter Miriam." Nur al-Din was lying in the stable,
chained and shackled, when they brought in the two stallions and he saw
that one of them had a film over his eyes. Now he had some knowledge of
horses and of the doctoring of their diseases; so he said to himself,
"This by Allah is my opportunity! I will go to the Wazir and lie to
him, saying, 'I will heal thee this horse': then will I do with him
somewhat that shall destroy his eyes, and he will slay me and I shall
be at rest from this woe-full life." So he waited till the Wazir
entered the stable, to look upon the steed, and said to him, "O my
lord, what will be my due, an I heal this horse, and make his eyes
whole again?" Replied the Wazir, "As my head liveth, an thou cure him,
I will spare thy life and give thee leave to crave a boon of me!" And
Nur al-Din said, "O my lord, bid my hands be unbound!" So the Wazir
bade unbind him and he rose and taking virgin glass,[FN#554] brayed it
and mixed it with unslaked lime and a menstruum of onion-juice. Then he
applied the whole to the horse's eyes and bound them up, saying in
himself, "Now will his eyes be put out and they will slay me and I
shall be at rest from this woe-full life." Then he passed the night
with a heart free from the uncertainty[FN#555] of cark and care,
humbling himself to Allah the Most High and saying, "O Lord, in Thy
knowledge is that which dispenseth with asking and craving!" Now when
the morning morrowed and the sun shone, the Wazir came to the stable
and, loosing the bandage from the horse's eyes considered them and
found them finer than before, by the ordinance of the King who openeth
evermore. So he said to Nur al-Din, "O Moslem, never in the world saw I
the like of thee for the excellence of thy knowledge. By the virtue of
the Messiah and the Faith which is no liar, thou makest me with wonder
to admire, for all the farriers of our land have failed to heal this
horse!" Then he went up to Nur al-Din and, doing off his shackles with
his own hand, clad him in a costly dress and made him his master of the
Horse; and he appointed him stipends and allowances and lodged him in a
story over the stables. So Nur al-Din abode awhile, eating and drinking
and making merry and bidding and forbidding those who tended the
horses; and whoso neglected or failed to fodder those tied up in the
stable wherein was his service, he would throw down and beat with
grievous beating and lay him by the legs in bilboes of iron.
Furthermore, he used every day to descend and visit the stallions and
rub them down with his own hand, by reason of that which he knew of
their value in the Wazir's eyes and his love for them; wherefore the
Minister rejoiced in him with joy exceeding and his breast broadened
and he was right glad, unknowing what was to be the issue of his case.
Now in the new palace, which the one-eyed Wazir had bought for Princess
Miriam, was a lattice-window overlooking his old house and the flat
wherein Nur al-Din lodged. The Wazir had a daughter, a virgin of
extreme loveliness, as she were a fleeing gazelle or a bending
branchlet, and it chanced that she sat one day at the lattice aforesaid
and behold, she heard Nur al-Din, singing and solacing himself under
his sorrows by improvising these verses,

"O my Censor who wakest a-morn to see * The joys of life and its
Had the fangs of Destiny bitten thee * In such bitter case thou
     hadst pled this plea,
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'
But from Fate's despight thou art safe this day;- * From her
     falsest fay and her crying 'Nay!'
Yet blame him not whom his woes waylay * Who distraught shall say
     in his agony,
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'
Excuse such lovers in flight abhorr'd * Nor to Love's distreses
     thine aid afford:
Lest thy self be bound by same binding cord * And drink of Love's
     bitterest injury.
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'
In His service I wont as the days went by * With freest heart
     through the nights to lie;
Nor tasted wake, nor of Love aught reckt * Ere my heart to
     subjection summoned he:
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'
None weet of Love and his humbling wrong * Save those he sickened
     so sore, so long,
Who have lost their wits 'mid the lover-throng * Draining
     bitterest cup by his hard decree:
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'
How oft in Night's gloom he cause wake to rue * Lovers' eyne, and
     from eyelids their sleep withdrew;
Till tears to the railing of torrents grew, * Overflowing cheeks
    , unconfined and free:
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'
How many a man he has joyed to steep * In pain, and for pine hath
     he plundered sleep,—
Made don garb of mourning the deepest deep * And even his
     dreaming forced to flee:
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'
How oft sufferance fails me! How bones are wasted * And down my
     cheeks torrent tear-drops hasted:
And embittered She all the food I tasted * However sweet it was
     wont to be:
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'
Most hapless of men who like me must love, * And must watch when
     Night droops her wing from above,
Who, swimming the main where affection drove * Must sign and sink
     in that gloomy sea:
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'
Who is he to whom Love e'er stinted spite * And who scaped his
     springes and easy sleight;
Who free from Love lived in life's delight? * Where is he can
     boast of such liberty?
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'
Deign Lord such suffering wight maintain * Then best Protector,
     protect him deign!
Establish him and his life assain * And defend him from all
     'Ah me, for Love and his case, ah me:
     My heart is burnt by the fires I dree!'"

And when Nur al-Din ended his say and ceased to sing his rhyming lay,
the Wazir's daughter said to herself, "By the virtue of the Messiah and
the Faith which is no liar, verily this Moslem is a handsome youth! But
doubtless he is a lover separated from his mistress. Would Heaven I wot
an the beloved of this fair one is fair like unto him and if she pine
for him as he for her! An she be seemly as he is, it behoveth him to
pour forth tears and make moan of passion; but, an she be other than
fair, his days are wasted in vain regrets and he is denied the taste of
delights."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

When it was the Eight Hundred and Eighty-eighth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Wazir's
daughter said to herself, "An his beloved be fair as he, it behoveth
him to pour forth tears; and, if other than fair, his heart is wasted
in vain regrets!" Now Miriam the Girdle-girl, the Minister's consort,
had removed to the new palace the day before and the Wazir's daughter
knew that she was straitened of breast; so she was minded to seek her
and talk with her and tell her the tidings of the young man and the
rhymes and verses she had heard him recite; but, before she could carry
out her design the Princess sent for her to cheer her with her
converse. So she went to her and found her heavy at heart and her tears
hurrying down her cheeks; and whilst she was weeping with sore weeping
she recited these couplets,

"My life is gone but love-longings remain * And my breast is
     straitened with pine and pain:
And my heart for parting to melt is fain * Yet hoping that union
     will come again,
     And join us in one who now are twain.
Stint your blame to him who in heart's your thrall * With the
     wasted frame which his sorrows gall,
Nor with aim of arrow his heart appal * For parted lover is
     saddest of all,
     And Love's cup of bitters is sweet to drain!"

Quoth the Wazir's daughter to her, "What aileth thee, O Princess, to be
thus straitened in breast and sorrowful of thought?" Whereupon Miriam
recalled the greatness of the delights that were past and recited these
two couplets,

"I will bear in patience estrangement of friend * And on cheeks
     rail tears that like torrents wend:
Haply Allah will solace my sorrow, for He * Neath the ribs of
     unease maketh ease at end."

Said the Wazir's daughter, "O Princess, let not thy breast be
straitened, but come with me straightway to the lattice; for there is
with us in the stable[FN#556] a comely young man, slender of shape and
sweet of speech, and meseemeth he is a parted lover." Miriam asked,
"And by what sign knowest thou that he is a parted lover?"; and she
answered, "O Queen, I know it by his improvising odes and verses all
watches of the night and tides of the day." Quoth the Princess in
herself, "If what the Wazir's daughter says be true, these are
assuredly the traits of the baffled, the wretched Ali Nur al-Din. Would
I knew if indeed he be the youth of whom she speaketh?" At this
thought, love-longing and distraction of passion redoubled on her and
she rose at once and walking with the maiden to the lattice, looked
down upon the stables, where she saw her love and lord Nur al-Din and
fixing her eyes steadfastly upon him, knew him with the bestest
knowledge of love, albeit he was sick, of the greatness of his
affection for her and of the fire of passion, and the anguish of
separation and yearning and distraction. Sore upon him was emaciation
and he was improvising and saying,

"My heart is a thrall; my tears ne'er abate * And their rains the
     railing of clouds amate;
'Twixt my weeping and watching and wanting love; * And whining
     and pining for dearest mate.
Ah my burning heat, my desire, my lowe! * For the plagues that
     torture my heart are eight;
And five upon five are in suite of them; * So stand and listen to
     all I state:
Mem'ry, madding thoughts, moaning languishment, * Stress of
     longing love, plight disconsolate;
In travail, affliction and strangerhood, * And annoy and joy when
     on her I wait.
Fail me patience and stay for engrossing care * And sorrows my
     suffering soul regrate.
On my heart the possession of passion grows * O who ask of what
     fire in my heart's create,
Why my tears in vitals should kindle flame, * Burning heart with
     ardours insatiate,
Know, I'm drowned in Deluge[FN#557] of tears and my soul * From
     Lazá-lowe fares to Háwiyah-goal."[FN#558]

When the Princess Miriam beheld Nur al-Din and heard his loquence and
verse and speech, she made certain that it was indeed her lord Nur
al-Din; but she concealed her case from the Wazir's daughter and said
to her, "By the virtue of the Messiah and the Faith which is no liar, I
thought not thou knewest of my sadness!" Then she arose forthright and
withdrawing from the window, returned to her own place, whilst the
Wazir's daughter went to her own occupations. The Princess awaited
patiently awhile, then returned to the window and sat there, gazing
upon her beloved Nur al-Din and delighting her eyes with his beauty and
inner and outer grace. And indeed, she saw that he was like unto moon
at full on fourteenth night; but he was ever sighing with tears never
drying, for that he recalled whatso he had been abying. So he recited
these couplets,

"I hope for Union with my love which I may ne'er obtain * At all,
     but bitterness of life is all the gain I gain:
My tears are likest to the main for ebb and flow of tide; * But
     when I meet the blamer-wight to staunch my tears I'm fain.
Woe to the wretch who garred us part by spelling of his
     spells;[FN#559] * Could I but hend his tongue in hand I'd
     cut his tongue in twain:
Yet will I never blame the days for whatso deed they did *
     Mingling with merest, purest gall the cup they made me
To whom shall I address myself; and whom but you shall seek * A
     heart left hostage in your Court, by you a captive ta'en?
Who shall avenge my wrongs on you,[FN#560] tyrant despotical *
     Whose tyranny but grows the more, the more I dare complain?
I made him regnant of my soul that he the reign assain * But me
     he wasted wasting too the soul I gave to reign.
Ho thou, the Fawn, whom I so lief erst gathered to my breast *
     Enow of severance tasted I to own its might and main,
Thou'rt he whose favours joined in one all beauties known to man,
     * Yet I thereon have wasted all my Patience' fair domain.
I entertained him in my heart whereto he brought unrest * But I
     am satisfied that I such guest could entertain.
My tears for ever flow and flood, likest the surging sea * And
     would I wot the track to take that I thereto attain.
Yet sore I fear that I shall die in depths of my chagrin * And
     must despair for evermore to win the wish I'd win."

When Miriam heard the verses of Nur al-Din the loving-hearted, the
parted; they kindled in her vitals a fire of desire, and while her eyes
ran over with tears, she recited these two couplets,

"I longed for him I love; but, when we met, * I was amazed nor
     tongue nor eyes I found.
I had got ready volumes of reproach; * But when we met, could
     syllable no sound."

When Nur al-Din heard the voice of Princess Miriam, he knew it and wept
bitter tears, saying, "By Allah, this is the chanting of the Lady
Miriam."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

End of Volume 8.

                    Arabian Nights, Volume 8

[FN#1]  Ironicč; we are safe as long as we are defended by such a

[FN#2]  Blue, azure. This is hardly the place for a protest, but I must
not neglect the opportunity of cautioning my readers against rendering
Bahr al-Azrak ("Blue River") by "Blue Nile." No Arab ever knew it by
that name or thereby equalled it with the White Nile. The term was a
pure invention of Abyssinian Bruce who was well aware of the unfact he
was propagating, but his inordinate vanity and self-esteem, contrasting
so curiously with many noble qualities, especially courage and
self-reliance, tempted him to this and many other a traveller's tale.

[FN#3]  This is orthodox Moslem doctrine and it does something for the
dignity of human nature which has been so unwisely depreciated and
degraded by Christianity. The contrast of Moslem dignity and Christian
abasement in the East is patent to every unblind traveller.

[FN#4]  Here ends vol. iii. of the Mac. Edit.

[FN#5]  This famous tale is a sister prose-poem to the "Arabian
Odyssey" Sindbad the Seaman; only the Bassorite's travels are in
Jinn-land and Japan.  It has points of resemblance in
"fundamental outline" with the Persian Romance of the Fairy Hasan
Bánú and King Bahrám-i-Gúr. See also the Kathá (s.s.) and the two
sons of the Asúra Máyá; the Tartar "Sidhi Kúr" (Tales of a
Vampire or Enchanted Corpse) translated by Mr. W. J. Thoms (the
Father of "Folk-lore" in 1846,) in "Lays and Legends of various
Nations"; the Persian Bahár-i-Dánish (Prime of Lore). Miss
Stokes' "Indian Fairy Tales"; Miss Frere's "Old Deccan Days" and
Mrs. F. A. Steel's "Tale of the King and his Seven Sons," with
notes by Lieutenant (now Captain) R. C. Temple (Folk-lore of the
Panjab, Indian Antiquary of March, 1882).

[FN#6]  In the Mac.  Edit. (vol. iv. i.) the merchant has two sons who
became one a brazier ("dealer in copper-wares" says Lane iii. 385) and
the other a goldsmith.  The Bresl.  Edit. (v. 264) mentions only one
son, Hasan, the hero of the story which is entitled, "Tale of Hasan
al-Basrí and the Isles of Wák Wák."

[FN#7]  Arab.  "Shásh Abyaz:" this distinctive sign of the True
Believer was adopted by the Persian to conceal his being a
fire-worshipper, Magian or "Guebre." The latter word was introduced
from the French by Lord Byron and it is certainly far superior to
Moore's "Gheber."

[FN#8]  Persians being always a suspected folk.

[FN#9]  Arab.  "Al-Búdikah" afterwards used (Night dcclxxix) in the
sense of crucible or melting-pot, in modern parlance a pipe-bowl; and
also written "Bútakah," an Arab distortion of the Persian "Bútah."

[FN#10]  Arab.  "Sindán" or "Sindiyán" (Dozy).  "Sandán," anvil;
"Sindán," big, strong (Steingass).

[FN#11]  Arab.  "Kímiya," (see vol. i. 305) properly the substance
which transmutes metals, the "philosopher's stone" which, by the by, is
not a stone; and comes from {chymeía,chymós} = a fluid, a wet drug, as
opposed to Iksír (Al-)  {Xerón, Xérion}, a dry drug.  Those who care to
see how it is still studied will consult my History of Sindh (chapt.
vii) and my experience which pointed only to the use made of it in base
coinage. Hence in mod. tongue Kímiyáwi, an alchemist, means a coiner, a
smasher. The reader must not suppose that the transmutation of metals
is a dead study: I calculate that there are about one hundred workers
in London alone.

[FN#12]  Arab.  "Al-Kír," a bellows also = Kúr, a furnace.  For the
full meaning of this sentence, see my "Book of the Sword," p. 119.

[FN#13]  Lit.  "bade him lean upon it with the shears" (Al-Káz).

[FN#14]  There are many kinds of Kohls (Hindos.  Surmá and
Kajjal) used in medicine and magic.  See Herklots, p. 227.

[FN#15]  Arab. "Sabíkah" = bar, lamina, from "Sabk" = melting,
smelting: the lump in the crucible would be hammered out into an ingot
in order to conceal the operation

[FN#16]  i.e. Ł375.

[FN#17]  Such report has cost many a life: the suspicion was and is
still deadly as heresy in a "new Christian" under the Inquisition.

[FN#18]  Here there is a double entendre: openly it means, "Few men
recognise as they should the bond of bread and salt:" the other sense
would be (and that accounts for the smile), "What the deuce do I care
for the bond?"

[FN#19]  Arab.  "Kabbát" in the Bresl. Edit. "Ka'abán ": Lane (iii.
519) reads "Ka'áb plur. of Ka'ab a cup."

[FN#20]  A most palpable sneer.  But Hasan is purposely represented as
a "softy" till aroused and energized by the magic of Love.

[FN#21]  Arab.  "Al-iksír" (see Night dcclxxix, supra p. 9): the Greek
word which has returned from a trip to Arabia and reappeared in Europe
as "Elixir."

[FN#22]  "Awák" plur. of "Ukíyah," the well-known "oke," or "ocque," a
weight varying from 1 to 2 lbs.  In Morocco it is pronounced "Wukíyah,"
and = the Spanish ounce (p. 279 Rudimentos del Arabe Vulgar, etc., by
Fr. José de Lorchundi, Madrid, Rivadeneyra, 1872).

[FN#23]  These lines have occurred in vol. iv. 267, where references to
other places are given.  I quote Lane by way of variety.  In the text
they are supposed to have been written by the Persian, a hint that
Hasan would never be seen again.

[FN#24]  i.e. a superfetation of iniquity.

[FN#25]  Arab.  "Kurbán," Heb. { }Corban = offering, oblation to be
brought to the priest's house or to the altar of the tribal God Yahveh,
Jehovah (Levit. ii, 2-3 etc.). Amongst the Maronites Kurban is the host
(-wafer) and amongst the Turks 'Id al-Kurban (sacrifice-feast) is the
Greater Bayram, the time of Pilgrimage.

[FN#26]  Nár = fire, being feminine, like the names of the other

[FN#27]  The Egyptian Kurbáj of hippopotamus-hide (Burkh. Nubia, pp.
62,282) or elephant-hide (Turner ii. 365).  Hence the Fr. Cravache (as
Cravat is from Croat).

[FN#28]  In Mac. Edit. "Bahriyah": in Bresl. Edit. "Nawátíyah."
See vol. vi. 242, for {Naýtes}, navita, nauta.

[FN#29]  In Bresl. Edit. (iv. 285) "Yá Khwájah," for which see vol. vi.

[FN#30]  Arab.  "Tabl" (vulg. baz) = a kettle-drum about half a foot
broad held in the left hand and beaten with a stick or leathern thong. 
Lane refers to his description (M.E. ii. chapt. v.) of the Dervish's
drum of tinned copper with parchment face, and renders Zakhmah or
Zukhmah (strap, stirrup-leather) by "plectrum," which gives a wrong
idea. The Bresl. Edit. ignores the strap.

[FN#31]  The "Spartivento" of Italy, mostly a tall headland which
divides the clouds.  The most remarkable feature of the kind is the
Dalmatian Island, Pelagosa.

[FN#32]  The "Rocs" (Al-Arkhákh) in the Bresl. Edit. (iv. 290).
The Rakham = aquiline vulture.

[FN#33]  Lane here quotes a similar incident in the romance "Sayf Zú
al-Yazan," so called from the hero, whose son, Misr, is sewn up in a
camel's hide by Bahrám, a treacherous Magian, and is carried by the
Rukhs to a mountain-top.

[FN#34]  These lines occurred in Night xxvi. vol. i. 275: I quote
Mr. Payne for variety.

[FN#35]  Thus a Moslem can not only circumcise and marry himself but
can also bury canonically himself.  The form of this prayer is given by
Lane M. E. chapt. xv.

[FN#36]  i.e. If I fail in my self-imposed duty, thou shalt charge me
therewith on the Judgment-day.

[FN#37]  Arab.  "Al-Alwán," plur. of laun (colour).  The latter in
Egyptian Arabic means a "dish of meat." See Burckhardt No. 279. I
repeat that the great traveller's "Arabic Proverbs" wants republishing
for two reasons.  First he had not sufficient command of English to
translate with the necessary laconism and assonance: secondly in his
day British Philistinism was too rampant to permit a literal
translation. Consequently the book falls short of what the Oriental
student requires; and I have prepared it for my friend Mr. Quaritch.

[FN#38]  i.e. Lofty, high-builded. See Night dcclxviii. vol. vii. p.
347. In the Bresl. Edit. Al-Masíd (as in Al-Kazwíni): in the Mac. Edit.

[FN#39]  Arab. "Munkati" here = cut off from the rest of the world.
Applied to a man, and a popular term of abuse in Al-Hijáz, it means one
cut off from the blessings of Allah and the benefits of mankind; a
pauvre sire. (Pilgrimage ii. 22.)

[FN#40]  Arab. "Baras au Juzám," the two common forms of leprosy. See
vol. iv. 51. Popular superstition in Syria holds that coition during
the menses breeds the Juzám, Dáa al-Kabír (Great Evil) or Dáa al-Fíl
(Elephantine Evil), i.e. Elephantiasis and that the days between the
beginning of the flow (Sabíl) to that of coition shows the age when the
progeny will be attacked; for instance if it take place on the first
day, the disease will appear in the tenth year, on the fourth the
fortieth and so on.  The only diseases really dreaded by the Badawin
are leprosy and small-pox. Coition during the menses is forbidden by
all Eastern faiths under the severest penalties. Al-Mas'údi relates how
a man thus begotten became a determined enemy of Ali; and the ancient
Jews attributed the magical powers of Joshua Nazarenus to this accident
of his birth, the popular idea being that sorcerers are thus impurely

[FN#41]  By adoption - See vol. iii. 151. This sudden affection (not
love) suggests the "Come to my arms, my slight acquaintance!" of the
Anti-Jacobin. But it is true to Eastern nature; and nothing can be more
charming than this fast friendship between the Princess and Hasan.

[FN#42]  En tout bien et en tout honneur, be it understood.

[FN#43]  He had done nothing of the kind; but the feminine mind is
prone to exaggeration. Also Hasan had told them a fib, to prejudice
them against the Persian.

[FN#44]  These nervous movements have been reduced to a system in the
Turk. "Ihtilájnámeh" = Book of palpitations, prognosticating from the
subsultus tendinum and other involuntary movements of the body from
head to foot; according to Ja'afar the Just, Daniel the Prophet,
Alexander the Great; the Sages of Persia and the Wise Men of Greece. In
England we attend chiefly to the eye and ear.

[FN#45]  Revenge, amongst the Arabs, is a sacred duty; and, in their
state of civilization, society could not be kept together without it.
So the slaughter of a villain is held to be a sacrifice to Allah, who
amongst Christians claims for Himself the monopoly of vengeance.

[FN#46]  Arab.  "Zindík." See vol. v. 230.

[FN#47]  Lane translates this "put for him the remaining food and
water;" but Al-Ákhar (Mac.  Edit.) evidently refers to the Najíb

[FN#48]  We can hardly see the heroism of the deed, but it must be
remembered that Bahram was a wicked sorcerer, whom it was every good 
Moslem's bounden duty to slay.  Compare the treatment of witches in
England two centuries ago.

[FN#49]  The mother in Arab tales is ma mčre, now becoming somewhat
ridiculous in France on account of the over use of that venerable

[FN#50]  The forbidden closet occurs also in Sayf Zú al-Yazan, who
enters it and finds the bird-girls.  Trébutien ii, 208 says, "Il est
assez remarquable qu'il existe en Allemagne une tradition ŕ peu prčs
semblable, et qui a fourni le sujet d'un des contes de Musaeus,
entitulé, le voile enlevé." Here Hasan is artfully left alone in a
large palace without other companions but his thoughts and the reader
is left to divine the train of ideas which drove him to open the door.

[FN#51]  Arab.  "Buhayrah" (Bresl. Edit. "Bahrah"), the tank or cistern
in the Hosh (court-yard) of an Eastern house.  Here, however, it is a
rain-cistern on the flat roof of the palace (See Night dcccviii).

[FN#52]  This description of the view is one of the most gorgeous in
The Nights.

[FN#53]  Here again are the "Swan-maidens" (See vol. v. 346) "one of
the primitive myths, the common heritage of the whole Aryan (Iranian)
race." In Persia Bahram-i-Gúr when carried off by the Dív Sapíd seizes
the Peri's dove-coat: in Santháli folk-lore Torica, the Goatherd,
steals the garment doffed by one of the daughters of the sun; and hence
the twelve birds of Russian Story.  To the same cycle belong the
Seal-tales of the Faroe Islands (Thorpe's Northern Mythology) and the
wise women or mermaids of Shetland (Hibbert).  Wayland the smith
captures a wife by seizing a mermaid's raiment and so did Sir Hagán by
annexing the wardrobe of a Danubian water-nymph. Lettsom, the
translator, mixes up this swan-raiment with that of the Valkyries or
Choosers of the Slain. In real life stealing women's clothes is an old
trick and has often induced them, after having been seen naked, to
offer their persons spontaneously.  Of this I knew two cases in India,
where the theft is justified by divine example.  The blue god Krishna,
a barbarous and grotesque Hindu Apollo, robbed the raiment of the
pretty Gopálís (cowherdesses) who were bathing in the Arjun River and
carried them to the top of a Kunduna tree; nor would he restore them
till he had reviewed the naked girls and taken one of them to wife. 
See also Imr al-Kays (of the Mu'allakah) with "Onaiza" at the port of
Daratjuljul (Clouston's Arabian Poetry, p.4). A critic has complained
of my tracing the origin of the Swan-maiden legend to the physical
resemblance between the bird and a high-bred girl (vol. v. 346). I
should have explained my theory which is shortly, that we must seek a
material basis for all so-called supernaturalisms, and that
anthropomorphism satisfactorily explains the Swan-maiden, as it does
the angel and the devil. There is much to say on the subject; but this
is not the place for long discussion.

[FN#54]  Arab.  "Nafs Ammárah," corresponding with our canting term
"The Flesh." Nafs al-Nátíkah is the intellectual soul or function; Nafs
al-Ghazabíyah = the animal function and Nafs al Shahwáníyah = the
vegetative property.

[FN#55]  The lines occur in vol. ii. 331: I have quoted Mr.
Payne.  Here they are singularly out of place.

[FN#56]  Not the "green gown" of Anglo-India i.e. a white ball-dress
with blades of grass sticking to it in consequence of a "fall

[FN#57]  These lines occur in vol. i. 219: I have borrowed from
Torrens (p. 219).

[FN#58]  The appearance of which ends the fast and begins the
Lesser Festival.  See vol. i. 84.

[FN#59]  See note, vol. i. 84, for notices of the large navel; much
appreciated by Easterns.

[FN#60]  Arab.  "Shá'ir Al-Walahán" = the love-distraught poet; Lane
has "a distracted poet."  My learned friend Professor Aloys Sprenger
has consulted, upon the subject of Al-Walahán the well-known Professor
of Arabic at Halle, Dr. Thorbeck, who remarks that the word (here as
further on) must be an adjective, mad, love-distraught, not a "lakab"
or poetical cognomen.  He generally finds it written Al-Shá'ir
al-Walahán (the love-demented poet) not Al-Walahán al-Shá'ir = Walahán
the Poet. Note this burst of song after the sweet youth falls in love:
it explains the cause of verse-quotation in The Nights, poetry being
the natural language of love and battle.

[FN#61]  "Them" as usual for "her."

[FN#62]  Here Lane proposes a transposition, for "Wa-huwá (and he)
fi'l-hubbi," to read "Fi 'l-hubbi wa huwa (wa-hwa);" but the latter is
given in the Mac. Edit.

[FN#63]  For the pun in "Sabr"=aloe or patience.  See vol. i. 138. In
Herr Landberg (i. 93) we find a misunderstanding of the couplet—

     "Aw'ákibu s-sabri (Kála ba'azuhum)
      Mahmúdah:  Kultu, 'khshi an takhirriní.'"

"The effects of patience" (or aloes) quoth one "are praiseworthy!"
Quoth I, "Much I fear lest it make me stool." Mahmúdah is not only un
laxatif, but a slang name for a confection of aloes.

[FN#64]  Arab. "Akúna fidá-ka." Fidá = ransom, self-sacrifice and
Fidá'an = instead of.  The phrase, which everywhere occurs in The
Nights, means, "I would give my life to save thine "

[FN#65]  Thus accounting for his sickness, improbably enough but in
flattering way.  Like a good friend (feminine) she does not hesitate a
moment in prescribing a fib.

[FN#66]  i.e. the 25,000 Amazons who in the Bresl. Edit. (ii. 308) are
all made to be the King's Banát" = daughters or protégées. The Amazons
of Dahome (see my "Mission") who may now number 5,000 are all
officially wives of the King and are called by the lieges "our

[FN#67]  The tale-teller has made up his mind about the damsel;
although in this part of the story she is the chief and eldest sister
and subsequently she appears as the youngest daughter of the supreme
Jinn King.  The mystification is artfully explained by the
extraordinary likeness of the two sisters. (See Night dcccxi.)

[FN#68]  This is a reminiscence of the old-fashioned "marriage by
capture," of which many traces survive, even among the civilised who
wholly ignore their origin.

[FN#69]  Meaning her companions and suite.

[FN#70]  Arab.  "'Abáah" vulg.  "'Abáyah."  See vol. ii. 133.

[FN#71]  Feet in the East lack that development of sebaceous glands
which afflicts Europeans.

[FN#72]  i.e. cutting the animals' throats after Moslem law.

[FN#73]  In Night dcclxxviii. supra p.5, we find the orthodox Moslem
doctrine that "a single mortal is better in Allah's sight than a
thousand Jinns."  For, I repeat, Al-Islam systematically exalts human
nature which Christianity takes infinite trouble to degrade and debase.
 The results of its ignoble teaching are only too evident in the East:
the Christians of the so-called (and miscalled) "Holy Land" are a
disgrace to the faith and the idiomatic Persian term for a Nazarene is
"Tarsá" = funker, coward.

[FN#74]  Arab.  "Sakaba Kúrahá;" the forge in which children are
hammered out?

[FN#75]  Arab.  "Má al-Maláhat" = water (brilliancy) of beauty.

[FN#76]  The fourth of the Seven Heavens, the "Garden of
Eternity," made of yellow coral.

[FN#77]  How strange this must sound to the Young Woman of London in
the nineteenth century.

[FN#78]  "Forty days" is a quasi-religious period amongst Moslem for
praying, fasting and religious exercises: here it represents our
"honey-moon." See vol. v. p. 62.

[FN#79]  Yá layta, still popular.  Herr Carlo Landberg (Proverbes et
Dictons du Peuple Arabe, vol. i. of Syria, Leyden, E. J. Brill, 1883)
explains layta for rayta (=raayta) by permutation of liquids and argues
that the contraction is ancient (p. 42).  But the Herr is no Arabist:
"Layta" means "would to Heaven," or, simply "I wish," "I pray" (for
something possible or impossible); whilst "La'alla" (perhaps, it may
be) prays only for the possible:  and both are simply particles
governing the noun in the oblique or accusative case.

[FN#80]  "His" for "her," i.e. herself, making somewhat of confusion
between her state and that of her son.

[FN#81]  i.e. his mother; the words are not in the Mac. Edit.

[FN#82]  Baghdad is called House of Peace, amongst other reasons, from
the Dijlah (Tigris) River and Valley "of Peace." The word was variously
written Baghdád, Bághdád, (our old Bughdaud and Bagdat), Baghzáz,
Baghzán, Baghdán, Baghzám and Maghdád as Makkah and Bakkah (Koran iii.
90).  Religious Moslems held Bágh (idol) and Dád (gift) an ill-omened
conjunction, and the Greeks changed it to Eirenopolis. (See Ouseley's
Oriental Collcctions, vol. i. pp. 18-20.)

[FN#83]  This is a popular saying but hardly a "vulgar proverb."
(Lane iii. 522.) It reminds rather of Shakespear's:

     "So loving to my mother,
      That he might not beteem the winds of heaven
      Visit her face too roughly."

[FN#84]  i.e. God forbid that I should oppose thee!

[FN#85]  Here the writer again forgets apparently, that Shahrazad is
speaking: she may, however, use the plural for the singular when
speaking of herself.

[FN#86]  i.e. She would have pleaded ill-treatment and lawfully
demanded to be sold.

[FN#87]  The Hindus speak of "the only bond that woman knows—her

[FN#88]  i.e. a rarity, a present (especially in Persian).

[FN#89]  Arab.  "Al-bisát" wa'l-masnad lit. the carpet and the cushion.

[FN#90]  For "Báb al-bahr" and "Báb al-Barr" see vol. iii. 281.

[FN#91]  She was the daughter of Ja'afar bin Mansúr; but, as will be
seen, The Nights again and again called her father Al-Kásim.

[FN#92]  This is an error for the fifth which occurs in the popular
saying, "Is he the fifth of the sons of Al-Abbás!" i.e. Harun
al-Rashid.  Lane (note, in loco) thus accounts for the frequent mention
of the Caliph, the greatest of the Abbasides in The Nights.  But this
is a causa non causa.

[FN#93]  i.e. I find thy beauty all-sufficient.  So the proverb "The
son of the quarter (young neighbour) filleth not the eye," which
prefers a stranger.

[FN#94]  They are mere doggerel, like most of the pičces de

[FN#95]  Afterwards called Wák Wák, and in the Bresl. Edit. Wák al-Wák.
See Lane's notes upon these Islands.  Arab Geographers evidently speak
of two Wak Waks.  Ibn al-Fakih and Al-Mas'údi (Fr. Transl., vol. iii.
6-7) locate one of them in East Africa beyond Zanzibar and Sofala. "Le
territoire des Zendjes (Zanzibar-Negroids) commence au canal
(Al-Khalij) dérivé du haut Nil (the Juln River?) et se prolonge
jusqu'au pays de Sofalah et des Wak-Wak." It is simply the peninsula of
Guardafui (Jard Hafun) occupied by the Gallas, pagans and Christians,
before these were ousted by the Moslem Somal; and the former
perpetually ejaculated "Wak" (God) as Moslems cry upon Allah.  This
identification explains a host of other myths such as the Amazons, who
as Marco Polo tells us held the "Female Island" Socotra (Yule ii. 396).
 The fruit which resembled a woman's head (whence the puellć
Wakwakienses hanging by the hair from trees), and which when ripe
called out "Wak Wak" and "Allah al-Khallák" (the Creator) refers to the
Calabash-tree (Adausonia digitata), that grotesque growth, a vegetable
elephant, whose gourds, something larger than a man's head, hang by a
slender filament. Similarly the "cocoa" got its name, in Port. =
Goblin, from the fancied face at one end. The other Wak Wak has been
identified in turns with the Seychelles, Madagascar, Malacca, Sunda or
Java (this by Langlčs), China and Japan.  The learned Prof. de Goeje
(Arabishe Berichten over Japan, Amsterdam, Muller, 1880) informs us
that in Canton the name of Japan is Wo-Kwok, possibly a corruption of
Koku-tan, the ebony-tree (Diospyros ebenum) which Ibn Khor-dábah and
others find together with gold in an island 4,500 parasangs from Suez
and East of China.  And we must remember that Basrah was the chief
starting-place for the Celestial Empire during the rule of the Tang
dynasty (seventh and ninth centuries). Colonel J. W. Watson of Bombay
suggests New Guinea or the adjacent islands where the Bird of Paradise
is said to cry "Wak Wak!" Mr. W. F. Kirby in the Preface (p. ix.) to
his neat little book "The New Arabian Nights," says: "The Islands of
Wak-Wak, seven years' journey from Bagdad, in the story of Hasan, have
receded to a distance of a hundred and fifty years' journey in that of
Majin (of Khorasan).  There is no doubt(?) that the Cora Islands, near
New Guinea, are intended; for the wonderful fruits which grow there are
Birds of Paradise, which settle in flocks on the trees at sunset and
sunrise, uttering this very cry." Thus, like Ophir, Wak Wak has
wandered all over the world and has been found even in Peru by the
Turkish work Tárikh al-Hind al-Gharbi = History of the West Indies
(Orient. Coll. iii 189).

[FN#96]  I accept the emendation of Lane's Shaykh, "Nasím "
(Zephyr) for "Nadím " (cup-companion).

[FN#97]  "Jannat al-Ná'im" = Garden of Delights is No. V Heaven, made
of white diamond.

[FN#98]  This appears to her very prettily put.

[FN#99]  This is the "House of Sadness" of our old chivalrous Romances.
See chapt. vi. of "Palmerin of England," by Francisco de Moraes (ob.
1572), translated by old Anthony Munday (dateless, 1590?) and
"corrected" (read spoiled) by Robert Southey, London, Longmans, 1807.

[FN#100]  The lines have occurred in Night clix. (vol. iii. 183), I
quote Mr. Payne who, like Lane, prefers "in my bosom" to "beneath my

[FN#101]  In this tale the Bresl. Edit. more than once adds "And let us
and you send a blessing to the Lord of Lords" (or to "Mohammed," or to
the "Prophet"); and in vol. v. p. 52 has a long prayer.  This is an act
of contrition in the tale-teller for romancing against the expressed
warning of the Founder of Al-Islam.

[FN#102]  From Bresl. Edit. (vi. 29): the four in the Mac. Edit. are
too irrelevant.

[FN#103]  Arab.  "Ghayúr"—jealous, an admirable epithet which
Lane dilutes to "changeable"—making a truism of a metaphor.

[FN#104]  These lines have occurred before.  I quote Mr. Payne.

[FN#105]  i.e. One fated to live ten years.

[FN#106]  This poetical way of saying "fourteen" suggests Camoens
(The Lusiads) Canto v. 2.

[FN#107]  Arab.  "Surrah," lit. = a purse: a few lines lower down it is
called "'Ulbah" = a box which, of course, may have contained the bag.

[FN#108]  The month which begins the Moslem year.

[FN#109]  As an Arab often does when deep in thought.  Lane appositely
quotes John viii. 6. "Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on
the ground." Mr. Payne translates, "He fell a-drumming on the earth
with his fingers," but this does not complete the sense.

[FN#110]  i.e."And the peace of Allah be upon thee! that will end thy
story." The Arab formula, "Wa al-Salám" (pron.  Wassalám) is used in a
variety of senses.

[FN#111]  Like Camoens, one of the model lovers, he calls upon
Love to torment him still more—ad majorem Dei (amoris) gloriam.

[FN#112]  Pron.  Aboor-Ruwaysh.  "The Father of the little Feather": he
is afterwards called "Son of the daughter of the accursed Iblis"; yet,
as Lane says, "he appears to be a virtuous person."

[FN#113]  Arab.  "Kantara al-lijám fi Karbús (bow) sarjih."

[FN#114]  I do not translate "beckoned" because the word would give a
wrong idea.  Our beckoning with the finger moved towards the beckoner
makes the so-beckoned Eastern depart in all haste. To call him you must
wave the hand from you.

[FN#115]  The Arabs knew what large libraries were; and a learned man
could not travel without camel-loads of dictionaries.

[FN#116]  Arab.  "Adim;" now called Bulghár, our Moroccan leather.

[FN#117]  Arab.  "Zinád," which Lane renders by "instruments for
striking fire," and Mr. Payne, after the fashion of the translators of
Al-Hariri, "flint and steel."

[FN#118]  A congener of Hasan and Husayn, little used except in Syria
where it is a favourite name for Christians.  The Muhít of Butrus
Al-Bostáni (s.v.) tells us that it also means a bird called Abú Hasan
and supplies various Egyptian synonyms.  In Mod. Arab. Grammar the form
Fa''úl is a diminutive as Hammúd for Ahmad, 'Ammúr for 'Amrú. So the
fem. form, Fa''úlah, e.g. Khaddúgah = little Khadijah and
Naffúsah=little Nafisah; Ar'úrah = little clitoris - whereas in Heb. it
is an incrementative e.g. dabbúlah a large dablah (cake or lump of
dried figs, etc.).

[FN#119]  In the Mac. Edit. "Soldiers of Al-Daylam" i.e. warlike as the
Daylamites or Medes.  See vol. ii. 94.

[FN#120]  Bilkís, it will be remembered, is the Arab. name of the
Queen of Sheba who visited Solomon.  In Abyssinia she is termed
Kebra zá negest or zá makadá, the latter (according to Ferdinand
Werne's "African Wanderings," Longmans, 1852) being synonymous
with Ityopia or Habash (Ethiopia or Abyssinia).

[FN#121]  Arab.  "Dakkah," which Lane translates by "settee."

[FN#122]  Arab. "Ambar al-Khám" the latter word (raw) being pure

[FN#123]  The author neglects to mention the ugliest part of
old-womanhood in the East, long empty breasts like tobacco-pouches. In
youth the bosom is beautifully high, arched and rounded, firm as stone
to the touch, with the nipples erect and pointing outwards.  But after
the girl-mother's first child (in Europe le premier embellit) all
changes.  Nature and bodily power have been overtasked; then comes the
long suckling at the mother's expense: the extension of the skin and
the enlargement of its vessels are too sudden and rapid for the
diminished ability of contraction and the bad food aids in the
continual consumption of vitality.  Hence, among Eastern women age and
ugliness are synonymous.  It is only in the highest civilisation that
we find the handsome old woman.

[FN#124]  The name has occurred in the Knightly tale of King Omar and
his sons, Vol. ii. 269.  She is here called Mother of Calamities,but in
p. 123, Vol. iv. of the Mac. Edit. she becomes "Lady (Zát) al-Dawáhi."
It will be remembered that the title means calamitous to the foe.

[FN#125]  By this address she assured him that she had no design upon
his chastity. In Moslem lands it is always advisable to accost a
strange woman, no matter how young, with, "Yá Ummí!" = O my mother.
This is pledging one's word, as it were, not to make love to her.

[FN#126]  Apparently the Wakites numbered their Islands as the
Anglo-Americans do their streets.  For this they have been charged with
"want of imagination"; but the custom is strictly classical. See at
Pompeii "Reg (io) I; Ins (ula) I, Via Prima, Secunda," etc.

[FN#127]  These are the Puellć Wakwakienses of whom Ibn Al-Wardi
relates after an ocular witness, "Here too is a tree which bears fruits
like women who have fair faces and are hung by their hair. They come
forth from integuments like large leathern bags (calabash-gourds?) and
when they sense air and sun they cry 'Wak! Wak!' (God!  God!) till
their hair is cut, and when it is cut they die; and the islanders
understand this cry wherefrom they augure ill." The Ajáib al-Hind
(chapt. xv.) places in Wak-land the Samandal, a bird which enters the
fire without being burnt evidently the Egyptian "Pi-Benni," which the
Greeks metamorphised to "Phnix." It also mentions a hare-like animal,
now male then female, and the Somal behind Cape Guardafui tell the same
tale of their Cynhyćnas.

[FN#128]  i.e. I will keep thee as though thou wert the apple of my

[FN#129]  A mere exaggeration of the "Gull-fairs" noted by travellers
in sundry islands as Ascension and the rock off Brazilian Santos.

[FN#130]  Arab.  "Kámil wa Basít wa Wáfir" = the names of three popular
metres, for which see the Terminal Essay.

[FN#131]  Arab.  "Manáshif" = drying towels, Plur. of Minshafah, and
the popular term which Dr. Jonathan Swift corrupted to "Munnassaf."
Lane (Nights, Introduct. p. ix.).

[FN#132]  Arab.  "Shafaif" opposed to "Shafah" the mouth-lips.

[FN#133]  Fountains of Paradise. This description is a fair instance of
how the Saj'a (prose-rhyme) dislocates the order; an Arab begins with
hair, forehead, eyebrows and lashes and when he reaches the nose, he
slips down to the toes for the sake of the assonance.  If the latter be
neglected the whole list of charms must be otherwise ordered; and the
student will compare Mr. Payne's version of this passage with mine.

[FN#134]  A fair specimen of the Arab logogriph derived from the Abjad
Alphabet which contains only the Hebrew and Syriac letters not the six
Arabic.  Thus 4 X 5=20 which represents the Kaf (K) and 6 X 10=60, or
Sin (S).  The whole word is thus "Kus", the Greek {kysňs} or {kyssňs},
and the lowest word, in Persian as in Arabic, for the female pudenda,
extensively used in vulgar abuse. In my youth we had at the University
something of the kind,

     To five and five and fifty-five
     The first of letters add
     To make a thing to please a King
     And drive a wise man mad.

Answer VVLVA.  Very interesting to the anthropological student is this
excursus of Hasan, who after all manner of hardships and horrors and
risking his life to recover his wife and children, breaks out into song
on the subject of her privities.  And it can hardly be tale-teller's
gag as both verse and prose show considerable art in composition. (See
p. 348.)

Supplementary Note To Hasan of Bassorah.

Note(p.93)—There is something wondrous naďve in a lover who, when asked
by his mistress to sing a song in her honour, breaks out into versical
praises of her parts.  But even the classical Arab authors did not
disdain such themes.  See in Al-Harírí (Ass. of Mayyáfarikín) where Abú
Zayd laments the impotency of old age in form of a Rasy or funeral
oration (Preston p. 484, and Chenery p. 221). It completely deceived
Sir William Jones, who inserted it into the chapter "De Poesi Funebri,"
p. 527 (Poeseos Asiaticć Commentarii), gravely noting, "Hćc Elegia non
admodum dissimilis esse videtur pulcherrimi illius carminis de Sauli et
Jonathani obitu; at que adeň versus iste 'ubi provocant adversarios
nunquam rediit a pugnć contentione sine spiculo sanguine imbuto,' ex
Hebrćo reddi videtur,

          A sanguine occisorum, a fortium virorum adipe,
          Arcus Jonathani non rediit irritus."

I need hardly say with Captain Lockett (226) that this "Sabb warrior,"
this Arabian Achilles, is the celebrated Bonus Deus or Hellespontiacus
of the Ancients.  The oration runs thus:—

          O folk I have a wondrous tale, so rare
          Much shall it profit hearers wise and ware!
          I saw in salad-years a potent Brave
          And sharp of edge and point his warrior glaive;
          Who entered joust and list with hardiment
          Fearless of risk, of victory confident,
          His vigorous onset straitest places oped
          And easy passage through all narrows groped:
          He ne'er encountered foe in single fight
          But came from tilt with spear in blood stained bright;
          Nor stormed a fortress howso strong and stark—
          With fencčd gates defended deep and dark—
          When shown his flag without th' auspicious cry
          "Aidance from Allah and fair victory nigh!"
          Thus wise full many a night his part he played
          In strength and youthtide's stately garb arrayed,
          Dealing to fair young girl delicious joy
          And no less welcome to the blooming boy.
          But Time ne'er ceased to stint his wondrous strength
          (Steadfast and upright as the gallow's length)
          Until the Nights o'erthrew him by their might
          And friends contemned him for a feckless wight;
          Nor was a wizard but who wasted skill
          Over his case, nor leach could heal his ill.
          Then he abandoned arms abandoned him
          Who gave and took salutes so fierce and grim;
          And now lies prostrate drooping haughty crest;
          For who lives longest him most ills molest.
          Then see him, here he lies on bier for bet;—
          Who will a shroud bestow on stranger dead?

A fair measure of the difference between Eastern and Western manners is
afforded by such a theme being treated by their gravest writers and the
verses being read and heard by the gravest and most worshipful men,
whilst amongst us Preston and Chenery do not dare even to translate
them.  The latter, indeed, had all that immodest modesty for which
English professional society is notable in this xixth century.  He
spoiled by needlessly excluding from a scientific publication (Mem.
R.A.S.) all of my Proverbia Communia Syriaca (see Unexplored Sryia, i.
364) and every item which had a shade of double entendre.  But Nemesis
frequently found him out: during his short and obscure rule in Printing
House Square, The Thunderer was distinguished by two of the foulest
indecencies that ever appeared in an English paper.

The well-known Koranic verse, whereby Allah is introduced into an
indecent tale and "Holy Writ" is punned upon.  I have noticed (iii.
206) that victory Fat'h lit.=opening everything (as e.g. a maidenhead).

[FN#135]  Egyptian and Syrian vulgar term for Mawálíyah or Mawáliyah, a
short poem on subjects either classical or vulgar. It generally
consists of five lines all rhyming except the penultimate.  The metre
is a species of the Basít which, however, admits of considerable
poetical license; this being according to Lane the usual "Weight,"

/   /    /  .
/   /    / 
/   /    / 
/   /    / 
/   /    / 
The scheme is distinctly anapćstic and Mr. Lyall (Translations of
Ancient Arabic Poetry) compares with a cognate metre, the Tawíl,
certain lines in Abt Vogler, e.g.

"Ye know why the forms are fair, ye hear how the tale is told."

[FN#136]  i.e. repeat the chapter of the Koran termed The Opening, and
beginning with these words, "Have we not opened thy breast for thee and
eased thee of thy burden which galled thy back? *** Verily with the
difficulty cometh ease!"—Koran xciv. vol. 1, 5.

[FN#137]  Lane renders Nur al-Hudŕ (Light of Salvation) by Light of Day
which would be Nur al-Hadŕ.

[FN#138]  In the Bresl. Edit.  "Yá Salám"=O safety!—a vulgar

[FN#139]  A favourite idiom meaning from the mischief which may (or
will) come from the Queen.

[FN#140]  He is not strong-minded but his feminine persistency of
purpose, likest to that of a sitting hen, is confirmed by the
"Consolations of religion."  The character is delicately drawn.

[FN#141]  In token that she intended to act like a man.

[FN#142]  This is not rare even in real life: Moslem women often hide
and change their names for superstitious reasons, from the husband and
his family.

[FN#143]  Arab.  "Sabab" which also means cause.  Vol. ii. 14.
There is the same metaphorical use of "Habl"= cord and cause.

[FN#144]  Arab. "Himŕ," a word often occurring in Arab poetry, domain,
a pasture or watered land forcibly kept as far as a dog's bark would
sound by some masterful chief like "King Kulayb." (See vol. ii. 77.)
This tenure was forbidden by Mohammed except for Allah and the Apostle
(i.e. himself).  Lane translates it "asylum."

[FN#145]  She was a maid and had long been of marriageable age.

[FN#146]  The young man had evidently "kissed the Blarney stone"; but
the flattery is the more telling as he speaks from the heart.

[FN#147]  "Inshallah " here being= D. V.

[FN#148]  i.e. The "Place of Light" (Pharos), or of Splendour. Here we
find that Hasan's wife is the youngest sister, but with an
extraordinary resemblance to the eldest, a very masterful young person.
 The anagnorisis is admirably well managed.

[FN#149]  i.e. the sweetmeats of the feast provided for the returning
traveller.  The old woman (like others) cannot resist the temptation of
a young man's lips.  Happily for him she goes so far and no farther.

[FN#150]  The first, fourth, fifth and last names have already
occurred: the others are in order, Star o' Morn, Sun of Undurn and
Honour of Maidenhood. They are not merely fanciful, but are still used
in Egypt and Syria.

[FN#151]  Arab.  "Fájirah" and elsewhere "Áhirah," =whore and strumpet
used often in loose talk as mere abuse without special meaning.

[FN#152]  This to Westerns would seem a most improbable detail, but
Easterns have their own ideas concerning "Al-Muhabbat al-ghariziyah"
=natural affection, blood speaking to blood, etc.

[FN#153]  One of the Hells (see vol. iv. 143).  Here it may be
advisable to give the names of the Seven Heavens (which are evidently
based upon Ptolemaic astronomy) and which correspond with the Seven
Hells after the fashion of Arabian system-mania. (1) Dar al-Jalál
(House of Glory) made of pearls; (2) Dár al-Salám (of Rest), rubies and
jacinths; (3) Jannat al-Maawá (Garden of Mansions, not "of mirrors," as
Herklots has it, p. 98), made of yellow copper; (4) Jannat al-Khuld (of
Eternity), yellow coral; (5) Jannat al-Na'ím (of Delights), white
diamond; (6) Jannat al-Firdaus (of Paradise), red gold; and (7) Jannat
al-'Adn (of Eden, or Al-Karár= of everlasting abode, which some make
No. 8), of red pearls or pure musk.  The seven Hells are given in vol.
v. 241; they are intended for Moslems (Jahannam); Christians (Lazŕ);
Jews (Hutamah); Sabians (Sa'ir); Guebres (Sakar); Pagans or idolaters
(Jahím); and Hypocrites (Háwiyah).

[FN#154]  Arab.  "'Atb," more literally= "blame," "reproach."

[FN#155]  Bresl. Edit.  In the Mac.  "it returned to the place whence I
had brought it"—an inferior reading.

[FN#156]  The dreams play an important part in the Romances of
Chivalry, e.g. the dream of King Perion in Amadis de Gaul, chapt. ii.
(London; Longmans, 1803).

[FN#157]  Amongst Moslems bastardy is a sore offence and a love-child
is exceedingly rare.  The girl is not only carefully guarded but she
also guards herself knowing that otherwise she will not find a husband.
 Hence seduction is all but unknown. The wife is equally well guarded
and lacks opportunities hence adultery is found difficult except in
books.  Of the Ibn (or Walad) Harám (bastard as opposed to the Ibn
Halál) the proverb says, "This child is not thine, so the madder he be
the more is thy glee!" Yet strange to say public prostitution has never
been wholly abolished in Al-Islam.  Al-Mas'údi tells us that in Arabia
were public prostitutes'(Bagháyá), even before the days of the Apostle,
who affected certain quarters as in our day the Tartúshah of Alexandria
and the Hosh Bardak of Cairo. Here says Herr Carlo Landberg (p. 57,
Syrian Proverbs) "Elles parlent une langue toute ŕ elle."  So
pretentious and dogmatic a writer as the author of Proverbes et Dictons
de la Province de Syrie, ought surely to have known that the Hosh
Bardak is the head-quarters of the Cairene Gypsies. This author, who
seems to write in order to learn, reminds me of an acute Oxonian
undergraduate of my day who, when advised to take a "coach," became a
"coach" himself.

[FN#158]  These lines occur in vol. vii. p. 340. I quote Mr.

[FN#159]  She shows all the semi-maniacal rancour of a good woman, or
rather a woman who has not broken the eleventh commandment, "Thou shalt
not be found out," against an erring sister who has been discovered. 
In the East also these unco'gúid dames have had, and too often have,
the power to carry into effect the cruelty and diabolical malignity
which in London and Paris must vent itself in scan. mag. and anonymous

[FN#160]  These faintings and trances are as common in the Romances of
Chivalry e.g. Amadis of Gaul, where they unlace the garments to give
more liberty, pour cold water on the face and bathe the temples and
pulses with diluted vinegar (for rose water) exactly as they do in The

[FN#161]  So Hafiz, "Bád-i-Sabá chu bugzarí" etc.

[FN#162]  Arab. "Takiyah." See vol. i. 224 and for the Tarn-Kappe vol.
iv. p. 176. In the Sinthásana Dwatrinsati (vulgo.  Singhásan Battísí),
or Thirty-two Tales of a Throne, we find a bag always full of gold, a
bottomless purse; earth which rubbed on the forehead overcomes all; a
rod which during the first watch of the night furnishes jewelled
ornaments; in the second a beautiful girl; in the third invisibility,
and in the fourth a deadly foe or death; a flower-garland which renders
the possessor invisible and an unfading lotus-flower which produces a
diamond every day.

[FN#163]  Arab.  "Judad," plur. of Jadíd, lit.= new coin, ergo applied
to those old and obsolete; 10 Judad were= one nusf or half dirham.

[FN#164]  Arab.  "Raff," a shelf proper, running round the room about
7-7˝ feet from the ground.  During my day it was the fashion in
Damascus to range in line along the Raff splendid porcelain bowls
brought by the Caravans in olden days from China, whilst on the table
were placed French and English specimens of white and gold "china"
worth perhaps a franc each.

[FN#165]  Lane supposes that the glass and china-ware had fallen upon
the divan running round the walls under the Raff and were not broken.

[FN#166]  These lines have occurred in Night dclxxxix. vol. vii. p.
119. I quote Lane.

[FN#167]  The lines have occurred before.  I quote Mr. Payne.

[FN#168]  This formula, I repeat, especially distinguishes the
Tale of Hasan of Bassorah.

[FN#169]  These lines have occurred in vol. 1. 249. I quote Lane.

[FN#170]  She speaks to the "Gallery," who would enjoy a loud laugh
against Mistress Gadabout. The end of the sentence must speak to the
heart of many a widow.

[FN#171]  These lines occur in vol. i. 25: so I quote Mr. Payne.

[FN#172]  Arab.  "Musáhikah;" the more usual term for a Tribade is
"Sahíkah" from "Sahk" in the sense of rubbing: both also are applied to
onanists and masturbators of the gender feminine.

[FN#173]  i.e. by way of halter.  This jar is like the cask in
Auerbach's Keller; and has already been used by witches; Night
dlxxxvii. vol. vi. 158.

[FN#174]  Here they are ten but afterwards they are reduced to seven: I
see no reason for changing the text with Lane and Payne.

[FN#175]  Wazir of Solomon.  See vol. i. 42; and vol. iii. 97.

[FN#176]  Arab.  "Ism al-A'azam," the Ineffable Name, a superstition
evidently derived from the Talmudic fancies of the Jews concerning
their tribal god, Yah or Yahvah.

[FN#177]  The tradition is that Mohámmed asked Akáf al-Wadá'ah "Hast a
wife?"; and when answered in the negative, "Then thou appertainest to
the brotherhood of Satans!  An thou wilt be one of the Christian monks
then company therewithal; but an thou be of us, know that it is our
custom to marry!"

[FN#178]  The old woman, in the East as in the West, being the most
vindictive of her kind.  I have noted (Pilgrimage iii. 70) that a
Badawi will sometimes though in shame take the blood-wit; but that if
it be offered to an old woman she will dash it to the ground and clutch
her knife and fiercely swear by Allah that she will not eat her son's

[FN#179]  Neither dome nor fount etc. are mentioned before, the normal

[FN#180]  In Eastern travel the rest comes before the eating and

[FN#181]  Arab.  "'Id" (pron.'Eed) which I have said (vol. i. 42, 317)
is applied to the two great annual festivals, the "Fęte of Sacrifice,"
and the "Break-Fast."  The word denotes restoration to favour and
Moslems explain as the day on which Adam (and Eve) who had been
expelled from Paradise for disobedience was re-established (U'ída) by
the relenting of Allah.  But the name doubtless dates amongst Arabs
from days long before they had heard of the "Lord Nomenclator."

[FN#182]  Alluding to Hasan seizing her feather dress and so taking her
to wife.

[FN#183]  Arab.  "Kharajú"=they (masc.) went forth, a vulgarism for
"Kharajna" (fem.)

[FN#184]  Note the notable housewife who, at a moment when youth would
forget everything, looks to the main chance.

[FN#185]  Arab. "Al-Malakút" (not "Malkút" as in Freytag) a Sufi term
for the world of Spirits (De Lacy Christ, Ar. i. 451). Amongst Eastern
Christians it is vulgarly used in the fem. and means the Kingdom of
Heaven, also the preaching of the Gospel.

[FN#186]  This is so rare, even amongst the poorest classes in the
East, that it is mentioned with some emphasis.

[FN#187]  A beauty among the Egyptians, not the Arabs.

[FN#188]  True Fellah—"chaff."

[FN#189]  Alluding to the well-known superstition, which has often
appeared in The Nights, that the first object seen in the morning, such
as a crow, a cripple, or a cyclops determines the fortunes of the day. 
Notices in Eastern literature are as old as the days of the Hitopadesa;
and there is a something instinctive in the idea to a race of early
risers.  At an hour when the senses are most impressionable the aspect
of unpleasant spectacles has double effect.

[FN#190]  Arab.  "Masúkah," the stick used for driving cattle, bâton
gourdin (Dozy).  Lane applies the word to a wooden plank used for
levelling the ground.

[FN#191]  i.e. the words I am about to speak to thee.

[FN#192]  Arab. "Sahifah," which may mean "page" (Lane) or "book"

[FN#193]  Pronounce, "Abussa'ádát" = Father of Prosperities:
Lane imagines that it came from the Jew's daughter being called
"Sa'adat."  But the latter is the Jew's wife (Night dcccxxxiii)
and the word in the text is plural.

[FN#194]  Arab.  "Furkh samak" lit. a fish-chick, an Egyptian

[FN#195]  Arab.  "Al-Rasif"; usually a river-quay, levée, an
embankment.  Here it refers to the great dyke which distributed the

[FN#196]  Arab.  "Dajlah," see vol. i, p 180.  It is evidently the
origin of the biblical "Hid-dekel" "Hid" = fierceness, swiftness.

[FN#197]  Arab.  "Bayáz" a kind of Silurus (S. Bajad, Forsk.) which
Sonnini calls Bayatto, Saksatt and Hébedé; also Bogar (Bakar, an ox). 
The skin is lubricous, the flesh is soft and insipid and the fish often
grows to the size of a man.  Captain Speke and I found huge specimens
in the Tangany ika Lake.

[FN#198]  Arab.  "Mu'allim," vulg. "M'allim," prop.= teacher, master
esp. of a trade, a craft.  In Egypt and Syria it is a civil address to
a Jew or a Christian, as Hájj is to a Moslem.

[FN#199]  Arab.  "Gharámah," an exaction, usually on the part of
government like a corvée etc.  The Europeo-Egyptian term is Avania
(Ital.) or Avanie (French).

[FN#200]  Arab.  "Sayyib-hu" an Egyptian vulgarism found also in Syria.
 Hence Sáibah, a woman who lets herself go (a-whoring) etc.  It is syn.
with "Dashar," which Dozy believes to be a softening of Jashar; and
Jashsh became Dashsh.

[FN#201]  The Silurus is generally so called in English on account of
its feeler-acting mustachios.

[FN#202]  See Night dcccvii, vol. viii. p. 94.

[FN#203]  This extraordinary confusion of two distinct religious
mythologies cannot be the result of ignorance.  Educated Moslems know
at least as much as Christians do, on these subjects, but the Rawi or
story-teller speaks to the "Gallery."  In fact it becomes a mere
'chaff' and The Nights give some neat specimens of our modern

[FN#204]  See vol. ii. 197.  "Al-Siddíkah" (fem.) is a title of
Ayishah, who, however, does not appear to have deserved it.

[FN#205]  The Jew's wife.

[FN#206]  Here is a double entendre.  The fisherman meant a word or
two.  The Jew understood the Shibboleth of the Moslem Creed, popularly
known as the "Two Words,"—I testify that there is no Ilah (god) but
Allah (the God) and I testify that Mohammed is the Messenger of Allah. 
Pronouncing this formula would make the Jew a Moslem.  Some writers are
surprised to see a Jew ordering a Moslem to be flogged; but the former
was rich and the latter was poor.  Even during the worst days of Jewish
persecutions their money-bags were heavy enough to lighten the greater
part, if not the whole of their disabilities.  And the Moslem saying
is, "The Jew is never your (Moslem or Christian) equal: he must be
either above you or below you."  This is high, because unintentional
praise of the (self-) Chosen People.

[FN#207]  He understands the "two words" (Kalmatáni) the Moslem's
double profession of belief; and Khalifah's reply embodies the popular
idea that the number of Moslems (who will be saved) is preordained and
that no art of man can add to it or take from it.

[FN#208]  Arab.  "Mamarr al-Tujjár" (passing-place of the traders)
which Lane renders "A chamber within the place through which the
traders passed."  At the end of the tale (Night dccxlv.) we find him
living in a Khan and the Bresl. Edit. (see my terminal note) makes him
dwell in a magazine (i.e. ground- floor store-room) of a ruined Khan.

[FN#209]  The text is somewhat too concise and the meaning is that the
fumes of the Hashish he had eaten ("his mind under the influence of
hasheesh," says Lane) suggested to him, etc.

[FN#210]  Arab. "Mamrak" either a simple aperture in ceiling or roof
for light and air or a more complicated affair of lattice- work and
plaster; it is often octagonal and crowned with a little dome.  Lane
calls it "Memrak," after the debased Cairene pronunciation, and shows
its base in his sketch of a Ka'áh (M.E., Introduction).

[FN#211]  Arab.  "Kamar."  This is a practice especially amongst
pilgrims.  In Hindostan the girdle, usually a waist-shawl, is called
Kammar-band our old "Cummerbund."  Easterns are too sensible not to
protect the pit of the stomach, that great ganglionic centre, against
sun, rain and wind, and now our soldiers in India wear flannel-belts on
the march.

[FN#212]  Arab.  "Fa-immá 'alayhá wa-immá bihá," i.e. whether (luck go)
against it or (luck go) with it.

[FN#213]  "O vilest of sinners!" alludes to the thief.  "A general
plunge into worldly pursuits and pleasures announced the end of the
pilgrimage-ceremonies. All the devotees were now "whitewashed"—the book
of their sins was a tabula rasa: too many of them lost no time in
making a new departure down South and in opening a fresh account"
(Pilgrimage iii. 365).  I have noticed that my servant at Jeddah would
carry a bottle of Raki, uncovered by a napkin, through the main

[FN#214]  The copper cucurbites in which Solomon imprisoned the
rebellious Jinns, often alluded to in The Nights.

[FN#215]  i.e. Son of the Chase: it is prob. a corruption of the
Persian Kurnas, a pimp, a cuckold, and introduced by way of chaff,
intelligible only to a select few "fast" men.

[FN#216]  For the name see vol. ii.61, in the Tale of Ghánim bin
'Ayyúb where the Caliph's concubine is also drugged by the Lady

[FN#217]  We should say, "What is this?" etc.  The lines have occurred
before so I quote Mr. Payne.

[FN#218]  Zubaydah, I have said, was the daughter of Ja'afar, son of
the Caliph al-Mansur, second Abbaside.  The story-teller persistently
calls her daughter of Al-Kásim for some reason of his own; and this he
will repeat in Night dcccxxxix.

[FN#219]  Arab.  "Shakhs," a word which has travelled as far as

[FN#220]  Arab.  "Shamlah" described in dictionaries, as a cloak
covering the whole body.  For Hizám (girdle) the Bresl. Edit. reads
"Hirám" vulg. "Ehrám," the waist-cloth, the Pilgrim's attire.

[FN#221]  He is described by Al-Siyúti (p. 309) as "very fair, tall
handsome and of captivating appearance."

[FN#222]  Arab.  "Uzn al-Kuffah" lit. "Ear of the basket," which vulgar
Egyptians pronounce "Wizn," so "Wajh" (face) becomes "Wishsh" and so

[FN#223]  Arab.  "Bi-fardayn" = with two baskets, lit. "two singles,"
but the context shows what is meant.  English Frail and French Fraile
are from Arab. "Farsalah" a parcel (now esp. of coffee-beans) evidently
derived from the low Lat. "Parcella" (Du Cange, Paris, firmin Didot
1845).  Compare "ream," vol. v. 109.

[FN#224]  Arab.  "Sátúr," a kind of chopper which here would be used
for the purpose of splitting and cleaning and scaling the fish.

[FN#225]  And, consequently, that the prayer he is about to make will
find ready acceptance.

[FN#226]  Arab. "Ruh bilá Fuzúl" (lit. excess, exceeding) still a
popular phrase.

[FN#227]  i.e. better give the fish than have my head broken.

[FN#228]  Said ironicč, a favourite figure of speech with the
Fellah: the day began badly and threatened to end unluckily.

[FN#229]  The penalty of Theft.  See vol. i. 274.

[FN#230]  This is the model of a courtly compliment; and it would still
be admired wherever Arabs are not "frankified."

[FN#231]  Arab.  "Shibábah;" Lane makes it a kind of reed- flageolet.

[FN#232]  These lines occur in vol. i. 76: I quote Mr. Payne.

[FN#233]  The instinctive way of juggling with Heaven like our sanding
the sugar and going to church.

[FN#234]  Arab.  "Yá Shukayr," from Shakar, being red (clay, etc.):
Shukár is an anemone or a tulip and Shukayr is its dim. Form. Lane's
Shaykh made it a dim. of "Ashkar" = tawny, ruddy (of complexion), so
the former writes, "O Shukeyr."  Mr. Payne prefers "O Rosy cheeks."

[FN#235]  For "Sandal," see vol. ii. {55}.  Sandalí properly means an
Eunuch clean rasé, but here Sandal is a P.N. = Sandal-wood.

[FN#236]  Arab.  "Yá mumátil," one who retards payment.

[FN#237]  Arab. "Kirsh al-Nukhál" = Guts of bran, a term little fitted
for the handsome and distinguished Persian.  But Khalifah is a
Fellah-grazioso of normal assurance shrewd withal; he blunders like an
Irishman of the last generation and he uses the first epithet that
comes to his tongue.  See Night dcccxliii. for the sudden change in

[FN#238]  So the Persian "May your shadow never be less" means, I have
said, the shadow which you throw over your servant. Shade, cold water
and fresh breezes are the joys of life in arid Arabia.

[FN#239]  When a Fellah demanded money due to him by the Government of
Egypt, he was a once imprisoned for arrears of taxes and thus prevented
from being troublesome.  I am told that matters have improved under
English rule, but I "doubt the fact."

[FN#240]  This freak is of course not historical.  The tale- teller
introduces it to enhance the grandeur and majesty of Harun al-Rashid,
and the vulgar would regard it as a right kingly diversion.  Westerns
only wonder that such things could be.

[FN#241]  Uncle of the Prophet: for his death see Pilgrimage ii. 248.

[FN#242]  First cousin of the Prophet, son of Abú Tálib, a brother of
Al-Abbas from whom the Abbasides claimed descent.

[FN#243]  i.e. I hope thou hast or Allah grant thou have good tidings
to tell me.

[FN#244]  Arab.  "Nákhúzah Zulayt."  The former, from the Persian
Nákhodá or ship-captain which is also used in a playful sense "a
godless wight," one owning no (ná) God (Khudá).  Zulayt = a low fellow,

[FN#245]  Yásamín and Narjis, names of slave-girls or eunuchs.

[FN#246]  Arab.  Tamar-hanná, the cheapest of dyes used ever by the
poorest classes.  Its smell, I have said, is that of newly mown hay,
and is prized like that of the tea-rose.

[FN#247]  The formula (meaning, "What has he to do here?") is by no
means complimentary.

[FN#248]  Arab.  "Jarrah" (pron. "Garrah") a "jar."  See Lane (M.E.
chapt. v.) who was deservedly reproached by Baron von Hammer for his
superficial notices. The "Jarrah" is of pottery, whereas the "Dist" is
a large copper chauldron and the Khalkinah one of lesser size.

[FN#249]  i.e. What a bother thou art, etc.

[FN#250]  This sudden transformation, which to us seems exaggerated and
unnatural, appears in many Eastern stories and in the biographies of
their distinguished men, especially students. A youth cannot master his
lessons; he sees a spider climbing a slippery wall and after repeated
falls succeeding. Allah opens the eyes of his mind, his studies become
easy to him, and he ends with being an Allámah (doctissimus).

[FN#251]  Arab.  "Bismillah, Námí!" here it is not a blessing, but a
simple invitation, "Now please go to sleep."

[FN#252]  The modern inkcase of the Universal East is a lineal
descendant of the wooden palette with writing reeds.  See an
illustration of that of "Amásis, the good god and lord of the two
lands" (circ. B.C. 1350) in British Museum (p. 41, "The Dwellers on the
Nile," by E. A. Wallis Bridge, London, 56, Paternoster Row, 1885).

[FN#253]  This is not ironical, as Lane and Payne suppose, but a
specimen of inverted speech—Thou art in luck this time!

[FN#254]  Arab.  "Marhúb" = terrible:  Lane reads "Mar'úb" = terrified.
 But the former may also mean, threatened with something terrible.

[FN#255]  i.e. in Kut al-Kulúb.

[FN#256]  Lit. to the son of thy paternal uncle, i.e. Mohammed.

[FN#257]  In the text he tells the whole story beginning with the
eunuch and the hundred dinars, the chest, etc.: but — "of no avail is a
twice-told tale."

[FN#258]  Koran xxxix. 54.  I have quoted Mr. Rodwell who affects the
Arabic formula, omitting the normal copulatives.

[FN#259]  Easterns find it far easier to "get the chill of poverty out
of their bones" than Westerns.

[FN#260]  Arab.  "Dar al-Na'ím."  Name of one of the seven stages of
the Moslem heaven.  This style of inscription dates from the days of
the hieroglyphs.  A papyrus describing the happy town of Raamses ends
with these lines.—

     Daily is there a supply of food:
     Within it gladness doth ever brood
     *              *               *               *
     Prolonged, increased; abides there Joy, etc., etc.

[FN#261]  Arab.  "Ansár" = auxiliaries, the men of Al-Medinah
(Pilgrimage ii. 130, etc.).

[FN#262]  Arab.  "Asháb" = the companions of the Prophet who may number
500 (Pilgrimage ii. 81, etc.).

[FN#263]  Arab. "Hásilah" prob. a corner of a "Godown" in some
Khan or Caravanserai.

[FN#264]  Arab. "Funduk" from the Gr. {pandocheîon}, whence the
Italian Fondaco e.g. at Venice the Fondaco de' Turchi.

[FN#265]  Arab. "Astár" plur. of Satr: in the Mac. Edit. Sátúr, both
(says Dozy) meaning "Couperet" (a hatchet). Habicht translates it "a
measure for small fish," which seems to be a shot and a bad shot as the
text talks only of means of carrying fish. Nor can we accept Dozy's
emendation Astál (plur. of Satl) pails, situlć. In Petermann's Reisen
(i. 89) Satr=assiette.

[FN#266]  Which made him expect a heavy haul.

[FN#267]  Arab. "Urkúb" = tendon Achilles in man hough or pastern in
beast, etc. It is held to be an incrementative form of 'Akab (heel); as
Kur'úb of Ka'b (heel) and Khurtúm of Khatm (snout).

[FN#268]  Arab. "Karmút" and "Zakzúk." The former (pronounced Garmút)
is one of the many Siluri (S. Carmoth Niloticus) very common and
resembling the Shál. It is smooth and scaleless with fleshy lips and
soft meat and as it haunts muddy bottoms it was forbidden to the
Ancient Egyptians. The Zakzúk is the young of the Shál (Synodontis
Schal: Seetzen); its plural form Zakázik (pronounced Zigázig) gave a
name to the flourishing town which has succeeded to old Bubastis and of
which I have treated in "Midian" and "Midian Revisited."

[FN#269]  "Yá A'awar"=O one-eye! i.e.. the virile member. So the vulgar
insult "Ya ibn al-aur" (as the vulgar pronounce it) "O son of a yard!"
When Al-Mas'údi writes (Fr. Trans. vii. 106), "Udkhul usbu'ak fí
aynih," it must not be rendered "Il faut lui faire violence": thrust
thy finger into his eye ('Ayn) means "put thy penis up his fundament!"
('Ayn being=Dubur). The French remarks, "On en trouverait l'équivalent
dans les bas-fonds de notre langue." So in English "pig's eye," "blind
eye," etc.

[FN#270]  Arab. "Nabbút"=a quarterstaff: see vol. i. 234.

[FN#271]  Arab. "Banní," vulg. Benni and in Lane (Lex. Bunni) the
Cyprinus Bynni (Forsk.), a fish somewhat larger than a barbel with
lustrous silvery scales and delicate flesh, which Sonnini believes may
be the "Lepidotes" (smooth-scaled) mentioned by Athenćus. I may note
that the Bresl. Edit. (iv. 332) also affects the Egyptian vulgarism
"Farkh-Banni" of the Mac. Edit. (Night dcccxxxii.).

[FN#272]  The story-teller forgets that Khalif had neither basket nor

[FN#273]  Arab. "Rayhán" which may here mean any scented herb.

[FN#274]  In the text "Fard Kalmah," a vulgarism. The Mac. Edit.
(Night dcccxxxv.) more aptly says, "Two words" (Kalmatáni, vulg.
Kalmatayn) the Twofold Testimonies to the Unity of Allah and the
Mission of His Messenger.

[FN#275]  The lowest Cairene chaff which has no respect for itself or

[FN#276]  Arab. "Karrat azlá hú": alluding to the cool skin of healthy
men when digesting a very hearty meal.

[FN#277]  This is the true Fellah idea. A peasant will go up to his
proprietor with the "rint" in gold pieces behind his teeth and undergo
an immense amount of flogging before he spits them out. Then he will
return to his wife and boast of the number of sticks he has eaten
instead of paying at once and his spouse will say, "Verily thou art a
man." Europeans know nothing of the Fellah. Napoleon Buonaparte, for
political reasons, affected great pity for him and horror of his
oppressors, the Beys and Pashas; and this affectation gradually became
public opinion. The Fellah must either tyrannise or be tyrannised over;
he is never happier than under a strong-handed despotism and he has
never been more miserable than under British rule or rather misrule.
Our attempts to constitutionalise him have made us the laughing-stock
of Europe.

[FN#278]  The turban is a common substitute for a purse with the lower
classes of Egyptians; and an allusion to the still popular practice of
turban-snatching will be found in vol. i. p. 259.

[FN#279]  Arab. "Sálih," a devotee; here, a naked Dervish.

[FN#280]  Here Khalif is made a conspicuous figure in Baghdad like
Boccaccio's Calandrino and Co. He approaches in type the old Irishman
now extinct, destroyed by the reflux action of Anglo-America (U.S.)
upon the miscalled "Emerald Isle." He blunders into doing and saying
funny things whose models are the Hibernian "bulls" and acts purely
upon the impulse of the moment, never reflecting till (possibly) after
all is over.

[FN#281]  Arab. "Kaylúlah," explained in vol. i. 51.

[FN#282]  i.e. thy bread lawfully gained. The "Bawwák" (trumpeter) like
the "Zammár" (piper of the Mac. Edit.) are discreditable craftsmen,
associating with Almahs and loose women and often serving as their

[FN#283]  i.e. he was indecently clad. Man's "shame" extends from navel
to knees. See vol vi. 118.

[FN#284]  Rashád would be=garden-cresses or stones: Rashíd the

[FN#285]  Arab. "Uff 'alayka"=fie upon thee! Uff=lit. Sordes Aurium and
Tuff (a similar term of disgust)=Sordes unguinum. To the English reader
the blows administered to Khalif appear rather hard measure. But a
Fellah's back is thoroughly broken to the treatment and he would take
ten times as much punishment for a few piastres.

[FN#286]  Arab. "Zurayk" dim. of Azrak=blue-eyed. See vol. iii. 104.

[FN#287]  Of Baghdad.

[FN#288]  Arab. "Hásil," i.e. cell in a Khan for storing goods:
elsewhere it is called a Makhzan (magazine) with the same sense.

[FN#289]  The Bresl. text (iv. 347) abbreviates, or rather omits; so
that in translation details must be supplied to make sense.

[FN#290]  Arab. "Kamán," vulgar Egyptian, a contraction from Kamá (as)
+ anna (since, because). So " Kamán shuwayh"=wait a bit; " Kamán
marrah"=once more and "Wa Kamána-ka"=that is why.

[FN#291]  i.e. Son of the Eagle: See vol. iv. 177. Here, however, as
the text shows it is hawk or falcon. The name is purely fanciful and
made mnemonically singular.

[FN#292]  The Egyptian Fellah knows nothing of boxing like the
Hausá man; but he is fond of wrestling after a rude and
uncultivated fashion, which would cause shouts of laughter in
Cumberland and Cornwall. And there are champions in this line,
See vol. ii. 93.

[FN#293]  The usual formula. See vol. ii. 5.

[FN#294]  As the Fellah still does after drinking a cuplet ("fingán" he
calls it) of sugared coffee.

[FN#295]  He should have said "white," the mourning colour under the

[FN#296]  Anglicč, "Fine feathers make fine birds"; and in Eastern
parlance, "Clothe the reed and it will become a bride." (Labbis
al-Búsah tabkí 'Arúsah, Spitta Bey, No. 275.) I must allow myself a few
words of regret for the loss of this Savant, one of the most
singleminded men known to me. He was vilely treated by the Egyptian
Government, under the rule of the Jew-Moslem Riyáz; and, his health not
allowing him to live in Austria, he died shortly after return home.

[FN#297]  Arab. " Saub (Tobe) 'Atábi": see vol. iii. 149.

[FN#298]  In text "Kimkhá," which Dozy also gives Kumkh=chenille,
tissu de soie veloutee: Damasqučte de soie or et argent de
Venise, du Levant , ŕ fleurs, etc. It comes from Kamkháb or
Kimkháb, a cloth of gold, the well-known Indian "Kimcob."

[FN#299]  Here meaning=Enter in Allah's name!

[FN#300]  The Arabs have a saying, "Wine breeds gladness, music
merriment and their offspring is joy."

[FN#301]  Arab. "Jokh al-Saklát," rich kind of brocade on broadcloth.

[FN#302]  Arab. "Hanabát," which Dozy derives from O. German
Hnapf, Hnap now Napf: thence too the Lat. Hanapus and Hanaperium:
Ital. Anappo, Nappo; Provenc. Enap and French and English
"Hanap"= rich bowl, basket, bag. But this is known even to the

[FN#303]  Arab. " Kirám," nobles, and " Kurúm," vines, a word which
appears in Carmel=Karam-El (God's vineyard).

[FN#304]  Arab. "Suláf al-Khandarísí," a contradiction. Suláf=the
ptisane of wine. Khandarísí, from Greek {chóndros}, lit. gruel, applies
to old wine.

[FN#305]  i.e. in bridal procession.

[FN#306]  Arab. "Al-'Arús, one of the innumerable tropical names given
to wine by the Arabs. Mr. Payne refers to Grangeret de la Grange,
Anthologie Arabe, p. 190.

[FN#307]  Here the text of the Mac. Edition is resumed.

[FN#308]  i.e. "Adornment of (good) Qualities." See the name punned on
in Night dcccli. Lane omits this tale because it contains the illicit
"Amours of a Christian and a Jewess who dupes her husband in various
abominable ways." The text has been taken from the Mac. and the Bresl.
Edits. x. 72 etc. In many parts the former is a mere Epitome.

[FN#309]  The face of her who owns the garden.

[FN#310]  i.e. I am no public woman.

[FN#311]  i.e. with the sight of the garden and its mistress— purposely
left vague.

[FN#312]  Arab. "Dádat." Night dcclxxvi. vol. vii. p. 372.

[FN#313]  Meaning respectively "Awaking" (or blowing hard), "Affairs"
(or Misfortunes) and "Flowing" (blood or water). They are evidently
intended for the names of Jewish slave-girls.

[FN#314]  i.e. the brow-curls, or accroche-cÂurs. See vol. i. 168.

[FN#315]  Arab. "Wisháh" usually applied to woman's broad belt,
stomacher (Al-Hariri Ass. of Rayy).

[FN#317]  The old Greek "Stephane."

[FN#317]  Alluding to the popular fancy of the rain-drop which becomes
a pearl.

[FN#318]  Arab. "Ghází"=one who fights for the faith.

[FN#319]  i.e. people of different conditions.

[FN#320]  The sudden change appears unnatural to Europeans; but an
Eastern girl talking to a strange man in a garden is already half won.
The beauty, however, intends to make trial of her lover's generosity
before yielding.

[FN#321]  These lines have occurred in the earlier part of the
Night: I quote Mr. Payne for variety.

[FN#322]  Arab. "Al-Sháh mát"=the King is dead, Pers. and Arab.
grotesquely mixed: Europeans explain "Checkmate" in sundry ways, all
more or less wrong.

[FN#323]  Cheating (Ghadr) is so common that Easterns who have no
tincture of Western civilisation look upon it not only as venial but
laudable when one can take advantage of a simpleton. No idea of
"honour" enters into it. Even in England the old lady whist-player of
the last generation required to be looked after pretty closely—if Mr.
Charles Dickens is to be trusted.

[FN#324]  Arab. "Al-Gháliyah," whence the older English Algallia.
See vol. i., 128. The Voyage of Linschoten, etc. Hakluyt Society
MDCCCLXXXV., with notes by my learned friend the late Arthur Coke
Burnell whose early death was so sore a loss to Oriental

[FN#325]  A favourite idiom, "What news bringest thou?" ("O
Asám!" Arab. Prov. ii. 589) used by Háris bin Amrú, King of
Kindah, to the old woman Asám whom he had sent to inspect a girl
he purposed marrying.

[FN#326]  Amongst the Jews the Arab Salám becomes "Shalúm" and a
Jewess would certainly not address this ceremonial greeting to a
Christian. But Eastern storytellers care little for these
minutić; and the "Adornment of Qualities," was not by birth a
Jewess as the sequel will show.

[FN#327]  Arab. "Sálifah," the silken plaits used as adjuncts.
See vol. iii, 313.

[FN#328]  I have translated these lines in vol. i. 131, and quoted Mr.
Torrens in vol. iv. 235. Here I borrow from Mr. Payne.

[FN#329]  Mr. Payne notes:—Apparently some place celebrated for its
fine bread, as Gonesse in seventeenth-century France. It occurs also in
Bresl. Edit. (iv. 203) and Dozy does not understand it. But Arj the
root=good odour.

[FN#330]  Arab. "Tás," from Pers. Tásah. M. Charbonneau a Professor of
Arabic at Constantine and Member of the Asiatic Soc. Paris, who
published the Histoire de Chams-Eddine et Nour-Eddine with Maghrabi
punctuation (Paris, Hachette, 1852) remarks the similarity of this word
to Tazza and a number of other whimsical coincidences as Zauj, {zygós}
jugum; Inkár, negare; matrah, matelas; Ishtirá, acheter, etc. To which
I may add wasat, waist; zabad, civet; Bás, buss (kiss); uzrub (pron.
Zrub), drub; Kat', cut; Tarík, track; etc., etc.

[FN#331]  We should say "To her (I drink)" etc.

[FN#332]  This is ad captandum. The lovers becoming Moslems would
secure the sympathy of the audience. In the sequel (Night dccclviii) we
learn that the wilful young woman was a born Moslemah who had married a
Jew but had never Judaized.

[FN#333]  The doggerel of this Kasidah is not so phenomenal as some we
have seen.

[FN#334]  Arab. "'Andam"=Brazil wood, vol. iii. 263.

[FN#335]  Arab. " Himŕ." See supra, p. 102.

[FN#336]  i.e. her favours were not lawful till the union was
sanctified by heartwhole (if not pure) love.

[FN#337]  Arab. "Mansúr wa munazzam=oratio soluta et ligata.

[FN#338]  i.e. the cupbearers.

[FN#339]  Which is not worse than usual.

[FN#340]  i.e. "Ornament of Qualities."

[FN#341]  The 'Akík, a mean and common stone, ranks high in
Moslem poetry on account of the saying of Mohammed recorded by
Ali and Ayishah "Seal with seals of Carnelian." ('Akik.)

[FN#342]  See note ii. at the end of this volume.

[FN#343]  Arab. "Mahall" as opposed to the lady's "Manzil," which would
be better "Makám." The Arabs had many names for their old habitations,
e.g.; Kubbah, of brick; Sutrah, of sun-dried mud; Hazírah, of wood;
Tiráf, a tent of leather; Khabáa, of wool; Kash'a, of skins; Nakhád, of
camel's or goat's hair; Khaymah, of cotton cloth; Wabar, of soft hair
as the camel's undercoat and Fustát (the well-known P.N.) a tent of
horsehair or any hair (Sha'ar) but Wabar.

[FN#344]  This is the Maghribi form of the Arab. Súk=a bazar-street,
known from Tanjah (Tangiers) to Timbuctoo.

[FN#345]  Arab. "Walímah" usually=a wedding-feast. According to the
learned Nasíf al-Yazají the names of entertainments are as follows:
Al-Jafalŕ=a general invitation, opp. to Al-Nakarŕ, especial; Khurs, a
childbirth feast; 'Akíkah, when the boy-babe is first shaved;
A'zár=circumcision-feast; Hizák, when the boy has finished his
perlection of the Koran; Milák, on occasion of marriage-offer; Wazímah,
a mourning entertainment; Wakírah=a "house-warming"; Nakí'ah, on
returning from wayfare; 'Akírah, at beginning of the month Rajab;
Kirŕ=a guest-feast and Maadubah, a feast for other cause; any feast.

[FN#346]  Arab. "Anistaná" the pop. phrase=thy company gladdens us.

[FN#347]  Here "Muákhát" or making mutual brotherhood would be=entering
into a formal agreement for partnership. For the forms of "making
brotherhood," see vol. iii. {151}.

[FN#348]  Arab. "Ishárah" in classical Arab. signs with the finger
(beckoning); Aumá with the hand; Ramz, with the lips; Khalaj, with the
eyelids (wink); and Ghamz with the eye. Aumáz is a furtive glance,
especially of women, and Ilház, a side-glance from lahaza, limis oculis
intuitus est. See Preston's Al-Hariri, p. 181.

[FN#349]  Arab. "Haudaj" (Hind. Haudah, vulg. Howda=elephant-saddle),
the women's camel-litter, a cloth stretched over a wooden frame. See
the Prize-poem of Lebid, v. 12.

[FN#350]  i.e. the twelve days' visit.

[FN#351]  See note, vol. vii. {226}. So Dryden (Virgil):—

          "And the hoarse raven on the blasted bough
          By croaking to the left presaged the coming blow."

And Gay (Fable xxxvii.),

          "That raven on the left-hand oak,
          Curse on his ill-betiding croak!"

In some Persian tales two crows seen together are a good omen.

[FN#352]  Vulgar Moslems hold that each man's fate is written in the
sutures of his skull but none can read the lines. See vol. iii. 123.

[FN#353]  i.e. cease not to bemoan her lot whose moon-faced beloved
ones are gone.

[FN#354]  Arab. "Rukb" used of a return caravan; and also meaning
travellers on camels. The vulgar however apply "Rákib" (a camel-rider)
to a man on horseback who is properly Fáris plur. "Khayyálah," while
"Khayyál" is a good rider. Other names are "Fayyál" (elephant-rider),
Baghghál (mule-rider) and Hammár (donkey-rider).

[FN#355]  A popular exaggeration. See vol. i. 117

[FN#356]  Lit. Empty of tent-ropes (Atnáb).

[FN#357]  Arab. "'Abír," a fragrant powder sprinkled on face, body and
clothes. In India it is composed of rice flower or powdered bark of the
mango, Deodar (uvaria longifolia), Sandalwood, lign-aloes or curcuma
(zerumbat or zedoaria) with rose-flowers, camphor, civet and
anise-seed. There are many of these powders: see in Herklots Chiksá,
Phul, Ood, Sundul, Uggur, and Urgujja.

[FN#358]  i.e. fair faced boys and women. These lines are from the
Bresl. Edit. x. 160.

[FN#359]  i.e. the Chief Kazi. For the origin of the Office and title
see vol. ii. 90, and for the Kazi al-Arab who administers justice among
the Badawin see Pilgrimage iii. 45.

[FN#360]  Arab. "Raas al-Mál"=capital, as opposed to Ribá or
Ribh=interest. This legal expression has been adopted by all
Moslem races.

[FN#361]  Our Aden which is thus noticed by Abulfeda (A.D. 1331): "Aden
in the lowlands of Tehámah * * * also called Abyana from a man (who
found it?), built upon the seashore, a station (for land travellers)
and a sailing-place for merchant ships India-bound, is dry and
sunparcht (Kashifah, squalid, scorbutic) and sweet water must be
imported. * * * It lies 86 parasangs from San'á but Ibn Haukal
following the travellers makes it three stages. The city, built on the
skirt of a wall-like mountain, has a watergate and a landgate known as
Bab al-Sákayn. But 'Adan Lá'ah (the modest, the timid, the less known
as opposed to Abyan, the better known?) is a city in the mountains of
Sabir, Al-Yaman, whence issued the supporters of the Fatimite Caliphs
of Egypt." 'Adan etymologically means in Arab. and Heb. pleasure
({hédone}), Eden (the garden), the Heaven in which spirits will see
Allah and our "Coal-hole of the East," which we can hardly believe ever
to have been an Eden. Mr. Badger who supplied me with this note
described the two Adens in a paper in Ocean Highways, which he cannot
now find. In the 'Ajáib al-Makhlúkát, Al-Kazwíni (ob. A.D. 1275)
derives the name from Ibn Sinán bin Ibrahím; and is inclined there to
place the Bír al-Mu'attal (abandoned well) and the Kasr alMashíd (lofty
palace) of Koran xxii. 44; and he adds "Kasr al-Misyad" to those
mentioned in the tale of Sayf al-Mulúk and Badí'a al-Jamál.

[FN#362]  Meaning that she had been carried to the Westward of

[FN#363]  Arab. "Zahrawíyah" which contains a kind of double entendre.
Fátimah the Prophet's only daughter is entitled Al-Zahrá the
"bright-blooming"; and this is also an epithet of Zohrah the planet
Venus. For Fatimah see vol. vi. 145. Of her Mohammed said, "Love your
daughters, for I too am a father of daughters" and, "Love them, they
are the comforters, the dearlings." The Lady appears in Moslem history
a dreary young woman (died ćt. 28) who made this world, like Honorius,
a hell in order to win a next-world heaven. Her titles are Zahrá and
Batúl (Pilgrimage ii. 90) both signifying virgin. Burckhardt translates
Zahrá by "bright blooming" (the etymological sense): it denotes
literally a girl who has not menstruated, in which state of purity the
Prophet's daughter is said to have lived and died. "Batúl" has the
sense of a "clean maid" and is the title given by Eastern Christians to
the Virgin Mary. The perpetual virginity of Fatimah even after
motherhood (Hasan and Husayn) is a point of orthodoxy in Al-Islam as
Juno's with the Romans and Umá's with the Hindú worshippers of Shiva.
During her life Mohammed would not allow Ali a second wife, and he held
her one of the four perfects, the other three being Asia wife of
"Pharaoh," the Virgin Mary and Khadijah his own wife. She caused much
scandal after his death by declaring that he had left her the Fadak
estate (Abulfeda I, 133, 273) a castle with a fine palm-orchard near
Khaybar. Abu Bakr dismissed the claim quoting the Apostle's Hadis, "We
prophets are folk who will away nothing: what we leave is alms-gift to
the poor," and Shí'ahs greatly resent his decision. (See Dabistan iii.
5152 for a different rendering of the words.) I have given the popular
version of the Lady Fatimah's death and burial (Pilgrimage ii. 315) and
have remarked that Moslem historians delight in the obscurity which
hangs over her last resting-place, as if it were an honour even for the
receptacle of her ashes to be concealed from the eyes of men. Her
repute is a curious comment on Tom Hood's

"Where woman has never a soul to save."

[FN#364]  For Sharif and Sayyid, descendants of Mohammed, see vol. iv.

[FN#365]  These lines have occurred with variants in vol. iii. 257, and
iv. 50.

[FN#366]  Arab. "Hazrat," esp. used in India and corresponding with our
medićval "prćsentia vostra."

[FN#367]  This wholesale slaughter by the tale-teller of worshipful and
reverend men would bring down the gallery like a Spanish tragedy in
which all the actors are killed.

[FN#368]  They are called indifferently "Ruhbán"=monks or
"Batárikah"=patriarchs. See vol. ii. 89.

[FN#369]  Arab. "Khilál." The toothpick, more esteemed by the Arabs
than by us, is, I have said, often used by the poets as an emblem of
attenuation without offending good taste. Nizami (Layla u Majnún)
describes a lover as "thin as a toothpick." The "elegant" Hariri (Ass.
of Barkaid) describes a toothpick with feminine attributes, "shapely of
shape, attractive, provocative of appetite, delicate as the leanest of
lovers, polished as a poinard and bending as a green bough."

[FN#370]  From Bresl. Edit. x. 194.

[FN#371]  Trébutien (vol. ii. 344 et seq.) makes the seven monks sing
as many anthems, viz. (1) Congregamini; (2) Vias tuas demonstra mihi;
(3) Dominus illuminatis; (4) Custodi linguam; (5) Unam petii a Domino;
(6) Nec adspiciat me visus, and (7) Turbatus est a furore oculus meus.
Dánis the Abbot chaunts Anima mea turbata est valdč.

[FN#372]  A neat and characteristic touch: the wilful beauty eats and
drinks before she thinks of her lover. Alas for Masrur married.

[FN#373]  The unfortunate Jew, who seems to have been a model husband
(Orientally speaking), would find no pity with a coffee-house audience
because he had been guilty of marrying a Moslemah. The union was null
and void therefore the deliberate murder was neither high nor petty
treason. But, The Nights, though their object is to adorn a tale, never
deliberately attempt to point a moral and this is one of their many

[FN#374]  These lines have repeatedly occurred. I quote Mr.

[FN#375]  i.e. by the usual expiation. See vol. {ii. 186}.

[FN#376]  Arab. "Shammirí"=up and ready!

[FN#377]  I borrow the title from the Bresl. Edit. x. 204. Mr. Payne
prefers "Ali Noureddin and the Frank King's Daughter." Lane omits also
this tale because it resembles Ali Shar and Zumurrud (vol. iv. 187) and
Alá al-Din Abu al-Shámát (vol. iv. 29), "neither of which is among the
text of the collection." But he has unconsciously omitted one of the
highest interest. Dr. Bacher (Germ. Orient. Soc.) finds the original in
Charlemagne's daughter Emma and his secretary Eginhardt as given in
Grimm's Deutsche Sagen. I shall note the points of resemblance as the
tale proceeds. The correspondence with the King of France may be a
garbled account of the letters which passed between Harun al-Rashid and
Nicephorus, "the Roman dog."

[FN#378]  Arab. "Allaho Akbar," the Moslem slogan or war-cry. See vol.
ii. 89.

[FN#379]  The gate-keeper of Paradise. See vol. iii. 15, 20.

[FN#380]  Negroes. Vol. iii. 75.

[FN#381]  Arab. "Nakat," with the double meaning of to spot and to
handsel especially dancing and singing women; and, as Mr. Payne notes
in this acceptation it is practically equivalent to the English phrase
"to mark (or cross) the palm with silver." I have translated "Anwá" by
Pleiads; but it means the setting of one star and simultaneous rising
of another foreshowing rain. There are seven Anwá (plur. of nawa) in
the Solar year viz. Al-Badri (Sept.-Oct.); Al-Wasmiyy (late autumn and
December); Al-Waliyy (to April); Al-Ghamír (June); Al-Busriyy (July);
Bárih al-Kayz (August) and Ahrák al-Hawá extending to September 8.
These are tokens of approaching rain, metaphorically used by the poets
to express "bounty". See Preston's Hariri (p. 43) and Chenery upon the
Ass. of the Banu Haram.

[FN#382]  i.e. They trip and stumble in their hurry to get there.

[FN#383]  Arab. "Kumm" = sleeve or petal. See vol. v. 32.

[FN#384]  Arab. "Kiráb" = sword-case of wood, the sheath being of

[FN#385]  Arab. "Akr kayrawán," both rare words.

[FN#386]  A doubtful tradition in the Mishkát al-Masábih declares that
every pomegranate contains a grain from Paradise. See vol. i. 134. The
Koranic reference is to vi. 99.

[FN#387]  Arab. "Aswad," lit. black but used for any dark colour, here
green as opposed to the lighter yellow.

[FN#388]  The idea has occurred in vol. i. 158.

[FN#389]  So called from the places where they grow.

[FN#390]  See vol. vii. for the almond-apricot whose stone is cracked
to get at the kernel.

[FN#391]  For Roum see vol. iv. 100: in Morocco "Roumi" means simply a
European. The tetrastich alludes to the beauty of the Greek slaves.

[FN#392]  Arab. "Ahlan" in adverb form lit. = "as one of the
household": so in the greeting "Ahlan wa Sahlan" (and at thine ease),
wa Marhabá (having a wide free place).

[FN#393]  For the Sufrah table-cloth see vol. i. 178.

[FN#394]  See vol. iii. 302, for the unclean allusion in fig and

[FN#395]  In the text "of Tor": see vol. ii. 242. The pear is mentioned
by Homer and grows wild in South Europe. Dr. Victor Hehn (The
Wanderings of Plants, etc.) comparing the Gr.{ápios} with the Lat.
Pyrus, suggests that the latter passed over to the Kelts and Germans
amongst whom the fruit was not indigenous. Our fine pears are mostly
from the East. e.g. the "bergamot" is the Beg Armud, Prince of Pears,
from Angora.

[FN#396]  i.e. "Royal," it may or may not come from Sultaníyah, a town
near Baghdad. See vol. i. 83; where it applies to oranges and citrons.

[FN#397]  'Andam = Dragon's blood: see vol. iii. 263.

[FN#398]  Arab. "Jamár," the palm-pith and cabbage, both eaten by
Arabs with sugar.

[FN#399]  Arab. "Anwár" = lights, flowers (mostly yellow): hence the
Moroccan "N'wár," with its usual abuse of Wakf or quiescence.

[FN#400]  Mr. Payne quotes Eugčne Fromentin, "Un Eté dans le Sahara,"
Paris, 1857, p. 194. Apricot drying can be seen upon all the roofs at
Damascus where, however, the season for each fruit is unpleasantly
short, ending almost as soon as it begins.

[FN#401]  Arab. "Jalájal" = small bells for falcons: in Port.
cascaveis, whence our word.

[FN#402]  Khulanján. Sic all editions; but Khalanj, or Khaulanj adj.
Khalanji, a tree with a strong-smelling wood which held in hand as a
chaplet acts as perfume, as is probably intended. In Span. Arabic it is
the Erica-wood. The "Muhit" tells us that is a tree parcel yellow and
red growing in parts of India and China, its leaf is that of the
Tamarisk (Tarfá); its flower is coloured red, yellow and white; it
bears a grain like mustard-seed (Khardal) and of its wood they make
porringers. Hence the poet sings,

"Yut 'amu 'l-shahdu fí 'l-jifáni, wa yuska * Labanu 'l-Bukhti fi
Kusá'i 'l-Khalanji:
Honey's served to them in platters for food; * Camels' milk in
bowls of the Khalanj wood."

The pl. Khalánij is used by Himyán bin Kaháfah in this "bayt",

"Hattá izá má qazati 'l-Hawáijá * Wa malaat Halába-há
Until she had done every work of hers * And with sweet milk had
filled the porringers."

[FN#403]  In text Al-Shá'ir Al-Walahán, vol. iii. 226.

[FN#404]  The orange I have said is the growth of India and the golden
apples of the Hesperides were not oranges but probably golden nuggets.
Captain Rolleston (Globe, Feb. 5, '84, on "Morocco-Lixus") identifies
the Garden with the mouth of the Lixus River while M. Antichan would
transfer it to the hideous and unwholesome Bissagos Archipelago.

[FN#405]  Arab. "Ikyán," the living gold which is supposed to grow in
the ground.

[FN#406]  For the Kubbad or Captain Shaddock's fruit see vol. ii. 310,
where it is misprinted Kubád.

[FN#407]  Full or Fill in Bresl. Edit. = Arabian jessamine or cork-tree
({phellón}. The Bul. and Mac. Edits. read "filfil" = pepper or

[FN#408]  Arab. "Sumbul al-'Anbari"; the former word having been
introduced into England by patent medicines. "Sumbul" in Arab. and
Pers. means the hyacinth, the spikenard or the Sign Virgo.

[FN#409]  Arab. "Lisán al-Hamal" lit. = Lamb's tongue.

[FN#410]  See in Bresl. Edit. X, 221. Taif, a well-known town in the
mountain region East of Meccah, and not in the Holy Land, was once
famous for scented goat's leather. It is considered to be a "fragment
of Syria" (Pilgrimage ii. 207) and derives its name = the
circumambulator from its having circuited pilgrim-like round the
Ka'abah (Ibid.).

[FN#411]  Arab. "Mikhaddah" = cheek-pillow: Ital. guanciale. In
Bresl. Edit. Mudawwarah (a round cushion) Sinjabiyah (of Ermine).
For "Mudawwarah" see vol. iv. 135.

[FN#412]  "Coffee" is here evidently an anachronism and was probably
inserted by the copyist. See vol. v. 169, for its first metnion. But
"Kahwah" may have preserved its original meaning = strong old wine
(vol. ii. 261); and the amount of wine-drinking and drunkenness proves
that the coffee movement had not set in.

[FN#413]  i.e. they are welcome. In Marocco "Lá baas" means, "I am
pretty well" (in health).

[FN#414]  The Rose (Ward) in Arab. is masculine, sounding to us most
uncouth. But there is a fem. form Wardah = a single rose.

[FN#415]  Arab. "Akmám," pl. of Kumm, a sleeve, a petal. See vol. iv.
107 and supra p. 267. The Moslem woman will show any part of her person
rather than her face, instinctively knowing that the latter may be
recognised whereas the former cannot. The traveller in the outer East
will see ludicrous situations in which the modest one runs away with
hind parts bare and head and face carefully covered.

[FN#416]  Arab. "Ikyán" which Mr. Payne translates "vegetable gold"
very picturesquely but not quite preserving the idea. See supra p. 272.

[FN#417]  It is the custom for fast youths, in Egypt, Syria, and
elsewhere to stick small gold pieces, mere spangles of metal on the
brows, cheeks and lips of the singing and dancing girls and the
perspiration and mask of cosmetics make them adhere for a time till
fresh movement shakes them off.

[FN#418]  See the same idea in vol. i. 132, and 349.

[FN#419]  "They will ask thee concerning wine and casting of lots; say:
'In both are great sin and great advantages to mankind; but the sin of
them both is greater than their advantage.'" See Koran ii. 216.
Mohammed seems to have made up his mind about drinking by slow degrees;
and the Koranic law is by no means so strict as the Mullahs have made
it. The prohibitions, revealed at widely different periods and varying
in import and distinction, have been discussed by Al-Bayzáwi in his
commentary on the above chapter. He says that the first revelation was
in chapt. xvi. 69 but, as the passage was disregarded, Omar and others
consulted the Apostle who replied to them in chapt. ii. 216. Then, as
this also was unnoticed, came the final decision in chapt. v. 92,
making wine and lots the work of Satan. Yet excuses are never wanting
to the Moslem, he can drink Champagne and Cognac, both unknown in
Mohammed's day and he can use wine and spirits medicinally, like sundry
of ourselves, who turn up the nose of contempt at the idea of drinking
for pleasure.

[FN#420]  i.e. a fair-faced cup-bearer. The lines have occurred before:
so I quote Mr. Payne.

[FN#421]  It is the custom of the Arabs to call their cattle to water
by whistling; not to whistle to them, as Europeans do, whilst making

[FN#422]  i.e. bewitching. See vol. i. 85. These incompatible metaphors
are brought together by the Saj'a (prose rhyme) in—"iyah."

[FN#423]  Mesopotamian Christians, who still turn towards Jerusalem,
face the West, instead of the East, as with Europeans: here the monk is
so dazed that he does not know what to do.

[FN#424]  Arab. "Bayt Sha'ar" = a house of hair (tent) or a couplet of
verse. Watad (a tentpeg) also is prosodical, a foot when the two first
letters are "moved" (vowelled) and the last is jazmated (quiescent),
e.g. Lakad. It is termed Majmú'a (united), as opposed to "Mafrúk"
(separated), e.g. Kabla, when the "moved" consonants are disjoined by a

[FN#425]  Lit. standing on their heads, which sounds ludicrous enough
in English, not in Arabic.

[FN#426]  These lines are in vol. iii. 251. I quote Mr. Payne who notes
"The bodies of Eastern women of the higher classes by dint of continual
maceration, Esther-fashion, in aromatic oils and essences, would
naturally become impregnated with the sweet scents of the cosmetics

[FN#427]  These lines occur in vol. i. 218: I quote Torrens for

[FN#428]  So we speak of a "female screw." The allusion is to the
dove-tailing of the pieces. This personification of the lute has
occurred before: but I solicit the reader's attention to it; it has a
fulness of Oriental flavour all its own.

[FN#429]  I again solicit the reader's attention to the simplicity, the
pathos and the beauty of this personification of the lute.

[FN#430]  "They" for she.

[FN#431]  The Arabs very justly make the "'Andalib" = nightingale,

[FN#432]  Anwár = lights or flowers: See Night dccclxv. supra p. 270.

[FN#433]  These couplets have occurred in vol. i. 168; so I quote
Mr. Payne.

[FN#434]  i.e. You may have his soul but leave me his body: company
with him in the next world and let me have him in this.

[FN#435]  Alluding to the Koranic (cxiii. 1.), "I take refuge with the
Lord of the Daybreak from the mischief of that which He hath created,
etc." This is shown by the first line wherein occurs the Koranic word
"Ghásik" (cxiii. 3) which may mean the first darkness when it
overspreadeth or the moon when it is eclipsed.

[FN#436]  "Malak" = level ground; also tract on the Nile sea.
Lane M.E. ii. 417, and Bruckhardt Nubia 482.

[FN#437]  This sentiment has often been repeated.

[FN#438]  The owl comes in because "Búm" (pron. boom) rhymes with
Kayyúm = the Eternal.

[FN#439]  For an incident like this see my Pilgrimmage (vol. i. 176).
How true to nature the whole scene is; the fond mother excusing her boy
and the practical father putting the excuse aside. European paternity,
however, would probably exclaim, "The beast's in liquor!"

[FN#440]  In ancient times this seems to have been the universal and
perhaps instinctive treatment of the hand that struck a father. By Nur
al-Din's flight the divorce-oath became technically null and void for
Taj al-Din had sworn to mutilate his son next morning.

[FN#441]  So Roderic Random and his companions "sewed their money
between the lining and the waistband of their breeches, except some
loose silver for immediate expense on the road." For a description of
these purses see Pilgrimage i. 37.

[FN#442]  Arab. Rashid (our Rosetta), a corruption of the Coptic
Trashit; ever famous for the Stone.

[FN#443]  For a parallel passage in praise of Alexandria see vol. i.
290, etc. The editor or scribe was evidently an Egyptian.

[FN#444]  Arab. "Saghr" (Thagr), the opening of the lips showing the
teeth. See vol. i. p. 156.

[FN#445]  Iskandariyah, the city of Iskandar or Alexander the Great,
whose "Soma" was attractive to the Greeks as the corpse of the Prophet
Daniel afterwards was to the Moslems. The choice of site, then occupied
only by the pauper village of Rhacotis, is one proof of many that the
Macedonian conqueror had the inspiration of genius.

[FN#446]  i.e. paid them down. See vol. i. 281; vol. ii. 145.

[FN#447]  Arab. "Baltiyah," Sonnini's "Bolti" and Nébuleux (because it
is dozid-coloured when fried), the Labrus Niloticus from its labra or
large fleshy lips. It lives on the "leaves of Paradise" hence the flesh
is delicate and savoury and it is caught with the épervier or sweep-net
in the Nile, canals and pools.

[FN#448]  Arab. "Liyyah," not a delicate comparison, but exceedingly
apt besides rhyming to "Baltiyah." The cauda of the "five-quarter
sheep, whose tails are so broad and thick that there is as much flesh
upon them as upon a quarter of their body," must not be confounded with
the lank appendage of our English muttons. See i. 25, Dr. Burnell's
Linschoten (Hakluyt Soc. 1885).

[FN#449]  A variant occurs in vol. iv. 191.

[FN#450]  Arab. "Tars Daylami," a small shield of bright metal.

[FN#451]  Arab. "Kaukab al-durri," see Pilgrimage ii. 82.

[FN#452]  Arab. "Kusúf" applied to the moon; Khusúf being the solar

[FN#453]  May Abú Lahab's hands perish. . . and his wife be a bearer of
faggots!" Koran cxi. 1 & 4. The allusion is neat.

[FN#454]  Alluding to the Angels who shoot down the Jinn. See vol. i.
224. The index misprints "Shibáh."

[FN#455]  For a similar scene see Ali Shar and Zumurrud, vol. iv. 187.

[FN#456]  i.e. of the girl whom as the sequel shows, her owner had
promised not to sell without her consent. This was and is a common
practice. See vol. iv. 192.

[FN#457]  These lines have occurred in vol. iii. p. 303. I quote
Mr. Payne.

[FN#458]  Alluding to the erectio et distensio penis which comes on
before dawn in tropical lands and which does not denote any desire for
women. Some Anglo-Indians term the symptom signum salutis, others a
urine-proud pizzle.

[FN#459]  Arab. "Mohtasib," in the Maghrib "Mohtab," the officer
charged with inspecting weights and measures and with punishing fraud
in various ways such as nailing the cheat's ears to his shop's shutter,

[FN#460]  Every where in the Moslem East the slave holds himself
superior to the menial freeman, a fact which I would impress upon the
several Anti-slavery Societies, honest men whose zeal mostly exceeds
their knowledge, and whose energy their discretion.

[FN#461]  These lines, extended to three couplets, occur in vol. iv.
193. I quote Mr. Payne.

[FN#462]  "At this examination (on Judgment Day) Mohammedans also
believe that each person will have the book, wherein all the actions of
his life are written, delivered to him; which books the righteous will
receive in their right hand, and read with great pleasure and
satisfaction; but the ungodly will be obliged to take them, against
their wills, in their left (Koran xvii. xviii. lxix, and lxxxiv.),
which will be bound behind their backs, their right hand being tied to
their necks." Sale, Preliminary Discourse; Sect. iv.

[FN#463]  "Whiteness" (bayáz) also meaning lustre, honour.

[FN#464]  This again occurs in vol. iv. 194. So I quote Mr.

[FN#465]  Her impudence is intended to be that of a captive

[FN#466]  i.e. bent groundwards.

[FN#467]  See vol. iv. 192. In Marocco Za'ar is applied to a man with
fair skin, red hair and blue eyes (Gothic blood?) and the term is not
complimentary as "Sultan Yazid Za'ar."

[FN#468]  The lines have occurred before (vol. iv. 194). I quote Mr.
Lane ii. 440. Both he and Mr. Payne have missed the point in "ba'zu
layáli" a certain night when his mistress had left him so lonely.

[FN#469]  Arab. "Raat-hu." This apparently harmless word suggests one
similar in sound and meaning which gave some trouble in its day. Says
Mohammed in the Koran (ii. 98) "O ye who believe! say not (to the
Apostle) Rá'iná (look at us) but Unzurná (regard us)." "Rá'iná" as
pronounced in Hebrew means "our bad one."

[FN#470]  By reason of its leanness.

[FN#471]  In the Mac. Edit. "Fifty." For a scene which illustrates this
mercantile transaction see my Pilgrimage i. 88, and its deduction. "How
often is it our fate, in the West as in the East, to see in bright eyes
and to hear from rosy lips an implied, if not an expressed 'Why don't
you buy me?' or, worse still, 'Why can't you buy me?'"

[FN#472]  See vol. ii. 165 dragging or trailing the skirts = walking
without the usual strut or swagger: here it means assuming the humble
manners of a slave in presence of the master.

[FN#473]  This is the Moslem form of "boycotting": so amongst early
Christians they refused to give one another God-speed. Amongst Hindús
it takes the form of refusing "Hukkah (pipe) and water" which
practically makes a man an outcast. In the text the old man expresses
the popular contempt for those who borrow and who do not repay. He had
evidently not read the essay of Elia on the professional borrower.

[FN#474]  See note p. 273.

[FN#475]  i.e. the best kind of camels.

[FN#476]  This first verse has occurred three times.

[FN#477]  Arab. "Surayyá" in Dictionaries a dim. of Sarwá = moderately
rich. It may either denote abundance of rain or a number of stars
forming a constellation. Hence in Job (xxxviii. 31) it is called a heap

[FN#478]  Pleiads in Gr. the Stars whereby men sail.

[FN#479]  This is the Eastern idea of the consequence of satisfactory
coition which is supposed to be the very seal of love. Westerns have
run to the other extreme.

[FN#480]  "Al-Ríf" simply means lowland: hence there is a Ríf in the
Nile-delta. The word in Europe is applied chiefly to the Maroccan coast
opposite Gibraltar (not, as is usually supposed the North-Western
seaboard) where the Berber-Shilhá race, so famous as the "Rif pirates"
still closes the country to travellers.

[FN#481]  i.e. Upper Egypt.

[FN#482]  These local excellencies of coition are described jocosely
rather than anthropologically.

[FN#483]  See vol. i. 223: I take from Torrens, p. 223.

[FN#484]  For the complete ablution obligatory after copulation before
prayers can be said. See vol. v. 199.

[FN#485]  Arab. "Zunnár," the Greek {zoonárion}, for which, see vol.
ii. 215.

[FN#486]  Miriam (Arabic Maryam), is a Christian name, in Moslem lands.
Abú Maryam "Mary's father" (says Motarrazi on Al-Hariri, Ass. of
Alexandria) is a term of contempt, for men are called after sons (e.g.
Abu Zayd), not after daughters. In more modern authors Abu Maryam is
the name of ushers and lesser officials in the Kazi's court.

[FN#487]  This formality, so contrary to our Western familiarity after
possession, is an especial sign of good breeding amongst Arabs and
indeed all Eastern nations. It reminds us of the "grand manner" in
Europe two hundred years ago, not a trace of which now remains.

[FN#488]  These lines are in Night i. ordered somewhat differently: so
I quote Torrens (p. 14).

[FN#489]  i.e. to the return Salám—"And with thee be peace and the
mercy of Allah and His blessings!" See vol. ii. 146. The enslaved
Princess had recognised her father's Wazir and knew that he could have
but one object, which being a man of wit and her lord a "raw laddie,"
he was sure to win.

[FN#490]  It is quite in Moslem manners for the bystanders to force the
sale seeing a silly lad reject a most advantageous offer for
sentimental reasons. And the owner of the article would be bound by
their consent.

[FN#491]  Arab. "Wa'llahi." "Bi" is the original particle of swearing,
a Harf al-jarr (governing the genitive as Bi'lláhi) and suggesting the
idea of adhesion: "Wa" (noting union) is its substitute in oath-formulć
and "Ta" takes the place of Wa as Ta'lláhi. The three-fold forms are
combined in a great "swear."

[FN#492]  i.e. of divorcing their own wives.

[FN#493]  These lines have occurred before: I quote Mr. Payne.

[FN#494]  These lines are in Night xxvi., vol. i. 275: I quote
Torrens (p. 277), with a correction for "when ere."

[FN#495]  This should be "draws his senses from him as one pulls hair
out of pate."

[FN#496]  Rághib and Záhid: see vol. v. 141.

[FN#497]  Carolus Magnus then held court in Paris; but the text
evidently alludes to one of the port-cities of Provence as Marseille
which we English will miscall Marseilles.

[FN#498]  Here the writer, not the young wife, speaks; but as a
tale-teller he says "hearer" not "reader."

[FN#499]  Kayrawán, the Arab. form of the Greek Cyrene which has lately
been opened to travellers and has now lost the mystery which enshrouded
it. In Hafiz and the Persian poets it is the embodiment of remoteness
and secrecy; as we till the last quarter century spoke of the "deserts
of Central Africa."

[FN#500]  Arab. "'Innín": alluding to all forms of impotence, from
dislike, natural deficiency or fascination, the favourite excuse.
Easterns seldom attribute it to the true cause, weak action of the
heart; but the Romans knew the truth when they described one of its
symptoms as cold feet. "Clino-pedalis, ad venerem invalidus, ab ea
antiqua opinione, frigiditatem pedum concubituris admodum officere."
Hence St. Francis and the bare-footed Friars. See Glossarium Eroticum
Linguae Latinć, Parisiis, Dondey-Dupré, MDCCCXXVI.

[FN#501]  I have noted the use of "island" for "land" in general. So in
the European languages of the sixteenth century, insula was used for
peninsula, e.g. Insula de Cori = the Corean peninsula.

[FN#502]  As has been noticed (vol. i. 333), the monocular is famed for
mischief and men expect the mischief to come from his blinded eye.

[FN#503]  Here again we have a specimen of "inverted speech" (vol. ii.
265); abusive epithets intended for a high compliment, signifying that
the man was a tyrant over rebels and a froward devil to the foe.

[FN#504]  Arab. "Bab al-Bahr," see vol. iii. 281.

[FN#505]  Arab. "Batárikah" see vol. ii. 89. The Templars, Knights of
Malta and other orders half ecclesiastic, half military suggested the
application of the term.

[FN#506]  These lines have occurred in vol. i. 280—I quote
Torrens (p. 283).

[FN#507]  Maryam al-Husn containing a double entendre, "O place of the
white doe (Rím) of beauty!" The girl's name was Maryam the Arab. form
of Mary, also applied to the B.V. by Eastern Christians. Hence a common
name of Syrian women is "Husn Maryam" = (one endowed with the spiritual
beauties of Mary: vol. iv. 87). I do not think that the name was
"manufactured by the Arab story-tellers after the pattern of their own
names (e.g. Nur al-Din or Noureddin, light of the faith, Tajeddin,
crown of faith, etc.) for the use of their imaginary Christian female

[FN#508]  I may here remind readers that the Bán, which some
Orientalists will write "Ben," is a straight and graceful species of
Moringa with plentiful and intensely green foliage.

[FN#509]  Arab. "Amúd al-Sawári" = the Pillar of Masts, which is still
the local name of Diocletian's column absurdly named by Europeans
"Pompey's Pillar."

[FN#510]  Arab. "Batiyah," also used as a wine-jar (amphora), a flagon.

[FN#511]  Arab. "Al-Kursán," evidently from the Ital. "Corsaro," a
runner. So the Port. "Cabo Corso," which we have corrupted to "Cape
Coast Castle" (Gulf of Guinea), means the Cape of Tacking.

[FN#512]  Arab. "Ghuráb," which Europeans turn to "Grab."

[FN#513]  Arab. "Sayyib" (Thayyib) a rare word: it mostly applies to a
woman who leaves her husband after lying once with him.

[FN#514]  Arab. "Batárikah:" here meaning knights, leaders of armed men
as in Night dccclxii., supra p. 256, it means "monks."

[FN#515]  i.e. for the service of a temporal monarch.

[FN#516]  Arab. "Sayr" = a broad strip of leather still used by way of
girdle amongst certain Christian religions in the East.

[FN#517]  Arab. "Haláwat al-Salámah," the sweetmeats offered to friends
after returning from a journey or escaping sore peril. See vol. iv. 60.

[FN#518]  So Eginhardt was an Erzcapellan and belonged to the ghostly

[FN#519]  These lines are in vols. iii. 258 and iv. 204. I quote
Mr. Payne.

[FN#520]  Arab. "Firásah," lit. = skill in judging of horse flesh
(Faras) and thence applied, like "Kiyáfah," to physiognomy. One
Kári was the first to divine man's future by worldly signs
(Al-Maydáni, Arab. prov. ii. 132) and the knowledge was
hereditary in the tribe Mashíj.

[FN#521]  Reported to be a "Hadis" or saying of Mohammed, to whom are
attributed many such shrewd aphorisms, e.g. "Allah defend us from the
ire of the mild (tempered)."

[FN#522]  These lines are in vol. i. 126. I quote Torrens (p. 120).

[FN#523]  These lines have occurred before. I quote Mr. Payne.

[FN#524]  Arab. "Khák-bák," an onomatopÂia like our flip-flap and a
host of similar words. This profaning a Christian Church which
contained the relics of the Virgin would hugely delight the
coffee-house habitués, and the Egyptians would be equally flattered to
hear that the son of a Cairene merchant had made the conquest of a
Frankish Princess Royal. That he was an arrant poltroon mattered very
little, as his cowardice only set of his charms.

[FN#525]  i.e. after the rising up of the dead.

[FN#526]  Arab. "Nafísah," the precious one i.e. the Virgin.

[FN#527]  Arab. "Nákús," a wooden gong used by Eastern Christians which
were wisely forbidden by the early Moslems.

[FN#528]  i.e. a graceful, slender youth.

[FN#529]  There is a complicatd pun in this line: made by splitting the
word after the fashion of punsters. "Zarbu 'l-Nawákísí" = the striking
of the gongs, and "Zarbu 'l Nawá, Kísí = striking the departure signal:
decide thou (fem. addressed to the Nafs, soul or self)" I have
attempted a feeble imitation.

[FN#530]  The modern Italian term of the venereal finish.

[FN#531]  Arab. "Najm al-Munkazzi," making the envious spy one of the
prying Jinns at whom is launched the Shiháb or shooting-star by the
angels who prevent them listening at the gates of Heaven. See vol. i.

[FN#532]  Arab. "Sandúk al-Nuzur," lit. "the box of vowed oblations."
This act of sacrilege would find high favour with the auditory.

[FN#533]  The night consisting like the day of three watches. See vol.

[FN#534]  Arab. "Al-Khaukhah," a word now little used.

[FN#535]  Arab. "Námúsiyah," lit. mosquito curtains.

[FN#536]  Arab. "Jáwashiyah," see vol. ii. 49.

[FN#537]  Arab. "Kayyimah," the fem. of "Kayyim," misprinted
"Kayim" in vol. ii. 93.

[FN#538]  i.e. hadst thou not disclosed thyself. He has one great merit
in a coward of not being ashamed for his cowardice; and this is a
characteristic of the modern Egyptian, whose proverb is, "He ran away,
Allah shame him! is better than, He was slain, Allah bless him!"

[FN#539]  Arab. "Ahjar al-Kassárín" nor forgotten. In those days ships
anchored in the Eastern port of Alexandria which is now wholly
abandoned on account of the rocky bottom and the dangerous "Levanter,"
which as the Gibraltar proverb says

"Makes the stones canter."

[FN#540]  Arab. "Hakk" = rights, a word much and variously used. To
express the possessive "mine" a Badawi says "Hakki" (pron. Haggi) and
"Lílí;" a Syrian "Shítí" for Shayyati, my little thing or "taba 'i" my
dependent; an Egyptian "Bitá' i" my portion and a Maghribi "M'tá 'i"
and "diyyáli" (di allazí lí = this that is to me). Thus "mine" becomes
a shibboleth.

[FN#541]  i.e. The "Good for nothing," the "Bad'un;" not some forgotten
ruffian of the day, but the hero of a tale antedating The Nights in
their present form. See Terminal Essay, x. ii.

[FN#542]  i.e. Hoping to catch Nur al-Din.

[FN#543]  Arab. "Sawwáhún" = the Wanderers, Pilgrims, wandering Arabs,
whose religion, Al-Islam, so styled by its Christain opponents. And yet
the new creed was at once accepted by whole regions of Christians, and
Mauritania, which had rejected Roman paganism and Gothic Christianity.
This was e.g. Syria and the so-called "Holy Land," not because, as is
fondly asserted by Christians, al-Islam was forced upon them by the
sword, but on account of its fulfilling a need, its supplying a higher
belief, unity as opposed to plurality, and its preaching a more manly
attitude of mind and a more sensible rule of conduct. Arabic still
preserves a host of words special to the Christian creed; and many of
them have been adopted by Moslems but with changes of signification.

[FN#544]  i.e. of things commanded and things prohibited. The writer is
thinking of the Koran in which there are not a few abrogated

[FN#545]  See below for the allusion.

[FN#546]  Arab. "Kafrá" = desert place. It occurs in this couplet,

          "Wa Kabrun Harbin fí-makánin Kafrin;
           Wa laysa Kurba Kabri Harbin Kabrun."
     "Harb's corse is quartered in coarse wold accurst;
     Nor close to corse of Harb is other corse;—"

words made purposely harsh because uttered by a Jinni who killed a
traveller named "Harb." So Homer:—

{pollŕ d' hánanta, kátanta, párantá te dachmía t' ęlthon.}

and Pope:—

"O'er hills, o'er dales, o'er crags, o'er rocks they go, etc."

See Preface (p. v.) to Captain A. Lockett's learned and whimsical
volume, "The Muit Amil" etc. Calcutta, 1814.

[FN#547]  These lines have occurred vol. iv. 267. I quote Mr.

[FN#548]  The topethesia is here designedly made absurd. Alexandria was
one of the first cities taken by the Moslems (A.H. 21 = 642) and the
Christian pirates preferred attacking weaker places, Rosetta and

[FN#549]  Arab. "Bilád al-Rúm," here and elsewhere applied to

[FN#550]  Here the last line of p. 324, vol. iv. in the Mac.
Edit. is misplaced and belongs to the next page.

[FN#551]  Arab. "Akhawán shakíkán" = brothers german (of men and
beasts) born of one father and mother, sire and dam.

[FN#552]  "The Forerunner" and "The Overtaker," terms borrowed from the
Arab Epsom.

[FN#553]  Known to us as "the web and pin," it is a film which affects
Arab horses in the damp hot regions of Malabar and Zanzibar and soon
blinds them. This equine cataract combined with loin-disease compels
men to ride Pegu and other ponies.

[FN#554]  Arab. "Zujáj bikr" whose apparent meaning would be glass in
the lump and unworked. Zaj áj bears, however, the meaning of
clove-nails (the ripe bud of the clove-shrub) and may possibly apply to
one of the manifold "Alfáz Adwiyah" (names of drugs). Here, however,
pounded glass would be all sufficient to blind a horse: it is much used
in the East especially for dogs affected by intestinal vermicules.

[FN#555]  Alluding to the Arab saying "The two rests"
(Al-ráhatáni) "certainty of success or failure," as opposed to
"Wiswás" when the mind fluctuates in doubt.

[FN#556]  She falls in love with the groom, thus anticipating the noble
self-devotion of Miss Aurora Floyd.

[FN#557]  Arab. "Túfán" see vol. {iv. 136}: here it means the
"Deluge of Noah."

[FN#558]  Two of the Hells. See vol. v. 240.

[FN#559]  Lit. "Out upon a prayer who imprecated our parting!"

[FN#560]  The use of masculine for feminine has frequently been noted.
I have rarely changed the gender or the number the plural being often
employed for the singular (vol. i. 98). Such change may avoid
"mystification and confusion" but this is the very purpose of the
substitution which must be preserved if "local colour" is to be

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night — Volume 08" ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.