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Title: The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night — Volume 07
Author: Richard F. Burton, - To be updated
Language: English
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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 07" ***

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J.C. Byers, Muhammad Hozien, Carrie Lorenz, Laura Shaffer, Sara Vazirian,
and Charles Wilson.


A Plain and Literal Translation

of the Arabian Nights Entertainments

Translated and Annotated by
 Richard F. Burton 


Privately Printed By The Burton Club

                     I Inscribe these pages
                   An Old And Valued Friend,

                        John W. Larking
                    (Whilome of Alexandria).

   In Whose Hospitable Home ("The Sycamores") I Made My Final

            Preparations For A Pilgrimage To Meccah

                        and El-Medinah.

R. F. Burton

Contents of the Seventh Volume

 The History of Gharib and His Brother Ajib (continued)
 138. Otbah and Rayya
 139. Hind, Daughter of Al-Nu'man, and Al-Hajjaj
 140. Khuzaymah Bin Bishr and Ikrimah Al-Fayyaz
 141. Yunus the Scribe and the Caliph Walid Bin Sahl
 142. Harun Al-Rashid and the Arab Girl
 143. Al-Asma'i and the Three Girls of Bassorah
 144. Ibrahim of Mosul and the Devil
 145. The Lovers of the Banu Uzrah
 146. The Badawi and His Wife
 147. The Lovers of Bassorah
 148. Ishak of Mosul and His Mistress and the Devil
 149. The Lovers of Al-Medinah
 150. Al-Malik Al-Nasir and His Wazir
 151. The Rogueries of Dalilah the Crafty and Her Daughter Zaynab the Coney-Catcher
 a. The Adventures of Mercury Ali of Cairo
 152. Ardashir and Hayat Al-Nufus
 153. Julnar the Sea-Born and Her Son King Badr Basim of Persia
 154. King Mohammed Bin Sabaik and the Merchant Hasan
 a. Story of Prince Sayf Al-Muluk and the Princess Badi'a Al-Jamal

The Book Of The


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

Shahrazad continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that
Sa'adan having broken into the palace of King Jamak and pounded to
pieces those therein, the survivors cried out, "Quarter! Quarter!"; and
Sa'adan said to them, "Pinion your King!" So they bound Jamak and took
him up, and Sa'adan drove them before him like sheep and brought them
to Gharib's presence, after the most part of the citizens had perished
by the enemy's swords. When the King of Babel came to himself, he found
himself bound and heard Sa'adan say, "I will sup to-night off this King
Jamak:" whereupon he turned to Gharib and cried to him, "I throw myself
on thy mercy." Replied Gharib, "Become a Moslem, and thou shalt be safe
from the Ghul and from the vengeance of the Living One who ceaseth
not." So Jamak professed Al-Islam with heart and tongue and Gharib bade
loose his bonds. Then he expounded The Faith to his people and they all
became True Believers; after which Jamak returned to the city and
despatched thence provaunt and henchmen to Gharib; and wine to the camp
before Babel where they passed the night. On the morrow, Gharib gave
the signal for the march and they fared on till they came to
Mayyáfárikín,[FN#1] which they found empty, for its people had heard
what had befallen Babel and had fled to Cufa-city and told Ajib. When
he heard the news, his Doom-day appeared to him and he assembled his
braves and informing them of the enemy's approach ordered them make
ready to do battle with his brother's host; after which he numbered
them and found them thirty thousand horse and ten thousand foot.[FN#2]
So, needing more, he levied other fifty- thousand men, cavalry and
infantry, and taking horse amid a mighty host, rode forwards, till he
came upon his brother's army encamped before Mosul and pitched his
tents in face of their lines. Then Gharib wrote a writ and said to his
officers, "Which of you will carry this letter to Ajib?" Whereupon
Sahim sprang to his feet and cried, "O King of the Age, I will bear thy
missive and bring thee back an answer." So Gharib gave him the epistle
and he repaired to the pavilion of Ajib who, when informed of his
coming, said, "Admit him!" and when he stood in the presence asked him,
"Whence comest thou?" Answered Sahim, "From the King of the Arabs and
the Persians, son-in-law of Chosroë, King of the world, who sendeth
thee a writ; so do thou return him a reply." Quoth Ajib, "Give me the
letter;" accordingly Sahim gave it to him and he tore it open and found
therein, "In the name of Allah the Compassionating, the Compassionate!
Peace on Abraham the Friend await! But afterwards. As soon as this
letter shall come to thy hand, do thou confess the Unity of the
Bountiful King, Causer of causes and Mover of the clouds;[FN#3] and
leave worshipping idols. An thou do this thing, thou art my brother and
ruler over us and I will pardon thee the deaths of my father and
mother, nor will I reproach thee with what thou hast done. But an thou
obey not my bidding, behold, I will hasten to thee and cut off thy head
and lay waste thy dominions. Verily, I give thee good counsel, and the
Peace be on those who pace the path of salvation and obey the Most High
King!" When Ajib read these words and knew the threat they contained,
his eyes sank into the crown of his head and he gnashed his teeth and
flew into a furious rage. Then he tore the letter in pieces and threw
it away, which vexed Sahim and he cried out upon Ajib, saying, "Allah
wither thy hand for the deed thou hast done!" With this Ajib cried out
to his men, saying, "Seize yonder hound and hew him in pieces with your
hangers.''[FN#4] So they ran at Sahim; but he bared blade and fell upon
them and slew of them more than fifty braves; after which he cut his
way out, though bathed in blood, and won back to Gharib, who said,
"What is this case, O Sahim?" And he told him what had passed, whereat
he grew livid for rage and crying "Allaho Akbar God is most great!"
bade the battle-drums beat. So the fighting-men donned their hauberks
and coats of straitwoven mail and baldrick'd themselves with their
swords; the footmen drew out in battle-array, whilst the horsemen
mounted their prancing horses and dancing camels and levelled their
long lances, and the champions rushed into the field. Ajib and his men
also took horse and host charged down upon host. — And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Gharib
and his merry men took horse, Ajib and his troops also mounted and host
charged down upon host. Then ruled the Kazi of Battle, in whose
ordinance is no wrong, for a seal is on his lips and he speaketh not;
and the blood railed in rills and purfled earth with curious
embroidery; heads grew gray and hotter waxed battle and fiercer. Feet
slipped and stood firm the valiant and pushed forwards, whilst turned
the faint-heart and fled, nor did they leave fighting till the day
darkened and the night starkened Then clashed the cymbals of retreat
and the two hosts drew apart each from other, and returned to their
tents, where they nighted. Next morning, as soon as it was day, the
cymbals beat to battle and derring-do, and the warriors donned their
harness of fight and baldrick'd[FN#5] their blades the brightest bright
and with the brown lance bedight mounted doughty steed every knight and
cried out, saying, "This day no flight!" And the two hosts drew out in
battle array, like the surging sea. The first to open the chapter[FN#6]
of war was Sahim, who drave his destrier between the two lines and
played with swords and spears and turned over all the Capitula of
combat till men of choicest wits were confounded. Then he cried out,
saying, "Who is for fighting? Who is for jousting? Let no sluggard come
out nor weakling!" Whereupon there rushed at him a horseman of the
Kafirs, as he were a flame of fire; but Sahim let him not stand long
before him ere he overthrew him with a thrust. Then a second came forth
and he slew him also, and a third and he tare him in twain, and a
fourth and he did him to death; nor did they cease sallying out to him
and he left not slaying them, till it was noon, by which time he had
laid low two hundred braves. Then Ajib cried to his men, "Charge once
more," and sturdy host on sturdy host down bore and great was the clash
of arms and battle-roar. The shining swords out rang; the blood in
streams ran and footman rushed upon footman; Death showed in van and
horse-hoof was shodden with skull of man; nor did they cease from sore
smiting till waned the day and the night came on in black array, when
they drew apart and, returning to their tents, passed the night there.
As soon as morning morrowed the two hosts mounted and sought the field
of fight; and the Moslems looked for Gharib to back steed and ride
under the standards as was his wont, but he came not. So Sahim sent to
his brother's pavilion a slave who, finding him not, asked the
tent-pitchers,[FN#7] but they answered, "We know naught of him."
Whereat he was greatly concerned and went forth and told the troops,
who refrained from battle, saying, "An Gharib be absent, his foe will
destroy us." Now there was for Gharib's absence a cause strange but
true which we will set out in order due. And it was thus. When Ajib
returned to his camp on the preceding Night, he called one of his
guardsmen by name Sayyar and said to him, "O Sayyar, I have not
treasured thee save for a day like this; and now I bid thee enter among
Gharib s host and, pushing into the marquee of their lord, bring him
hither to me and prove how wily thy cunning be." And Sayyar said, "I
hear and I obey." So he repaired to the enemy's camp and stealing into
Gharib's pavilion, under the darkness of the night, when all the men
had gone to their places of rest, stood up as though he were a slave to
serve Gharib, who presently, being athirst, called to him for water. So
he brought him a pitcher of water, drugged with Bhang, and Gharib could
not fulfill his need ere he fell down with head distancing heels,
whereupon Sayyar wrapped him in his cloak and carrying him to Ajib's
tent, threw him down at his feet. Quoth Ajib, "O Sayyar, what is this?"
Quoth he, "This be thy brother Gharib;" whereat Ajib rejoiced and said,
"The blessings of the Idols light upon thee! Loose him and wake him."
So they made him sniff up vinegar and he came to himself and opened his
eyes; then, finding himself bound and in a tent other than his own,
exclaimed, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah,
the Glorious the Great!" Thereupon Ajib cried out at him, saying, "Dost
thou draw on me, O dog, and seek to slay me and take on me thy
blood-wreak of thy father and thy mother? I will send thee this very
day to them and rid the world of thee." Replied Gharib, Kafir hound!
soon shalt thou see against whom the wheels of fate shall revolve and
who shall be overthrown by the wrath of the Almighty King, Who wotteth
what is in hearts and Who shall leave thee in Gehenna tormented and
confounded! Have ruth on thyself and say with me, 'There is no god but
the God and Abraham is the Friend of God!' " When Ajib heard Gharib's
words, he snarked and snorted and railed at his god, the stone, and
called for the sworder and the leather rug of blood but his Wazir, who
was at heart a Moslem though outwardly a Miscreant, rose and kissing
ground before him, said, "Patience, O King, deal not hastily, but wait
till we know the conquered from the conqueror. If we prove the victors,
we shall have power to kill him and, if we be beaten, his being alive
in our hands will be a strength to us." And the Emirs said, "The
Minister speaketh sooth"! —And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Ajib
purposed to slay Gharib, the Wazir rose and said, "Deal not hastily,
for we have always power to kill him!" So Ajib bade lay his brother
Gharib in irons and chain him up in his own tent and set a thousand
stout warriors to guard him. Meanwhile Gharib's host, when they awoke
that morning and found not their King, were as sheep sans a shepherd;
but Sa'adan the Ghul cried out at them, saying, "O folk, don your
war-gear and trust to your Lord to defend you!" So Arabs and Ajams
mounted horse, after clothing themselves in hauberks of iron and
shirting themselves in straight knit mail, and sallied forth to the
field, the Chiefs and the colours moving in van. Then dashed out the
Ghul of the Mountain, with a club on his shoulder, two hundred pounds
in weight, and wheeled and careered, saying, "Ho, worshippers of idols,
come ye out and renown it this day, for 'tis a day of onslaught! Whoso
knoweth me hath enough of my mischief and whoso knoweth me not, I will
make myself known to him. I am Sa'adan, servant of King Gharib. Who is
for jousting? Who is for fighting? Let no faintheart come forth to me
to-day or weakling." And there rushed upon him a Champion of the
Infidels, as he were a flame of fire, and drove at him, but Sa'adan
charged home at him and dealt him with his club a blow which broke his
ribs and cast him lifeless to the earth. Then he called out to his sons
and slaves, saying, "Light the bonfire, and whoso falleth of the Kafirs
do ye dress him and roast him well in the flame, then bring him to me
that I may break my fast on him!" So they kindled a fire midmost the
plain and laid thereon the slain, till he was cooked, when they brought
him to Sa'adan, who gnawed his flesh and crunched his bones. When the
Miscreants saw the Mountain-Ghul do this deed they were affrighted with
sore affright, but Ajib cried out to his men, saying, "Out on you! Fall
upon the Ogre and hew him in hunks with your scymitars!" So twenty
thousand men ran at Sa'adan, whilst the footmen circled round him and
rained upon him darts and shafts so that he was wounded in
four-and-twenty places, and his blood ran down upon the earth, and he
was alone. Then the host of the Moslems drave at the heathenry, calling
for help upon the Lord of the three Worlds, and they ceased not from
fight and fray till the day came to an end, when they drew apart. But
the Infidels had captured Sa'adan, as he were a drunken man for loss of
blood; and they bound him fast and set him by Gharib who, seeing the
Ghul a prisoner, said, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save
in Allah, the Glorious, the Great! O Sa'adan, what case is this?" "O my
lord," replied Sa'adan, "it is Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) who
ordaineth joy and annoy and there is no help but this and that betide."
And Gharib rejoined, "Thou speakest sooth, O Sa'adan!" But Ajib passed
the night in joy and he said to his men, "Mount ye on the morrow and
fall upon the Moslems so shall not one of them be left alive." And they
replied, "Hearkening and obedience!" This is how it fared with them;
but as regards the Moslems, they passed the night, dejected and weeping
for their King and Sa'adan; but Sahim said to them, "O folk, be not
concerned, for the aidance of Almighty Allah is nigh." Then he waited
till midnight, when he assumed the garb of a tent-pitcher; and,
repairing to Ajib's camp, made his way between the tents and pavilions
till he came to the King's marquee, where he saw him seated on his
throne surrounded by his Princes. So he entered and going up to the
candles which burnt in the tent snuffed them and sprinkled levigated
henbane on the wicks; after which he withdrew and waited without the
marquee, till the smoke of the burning henbane reached Ajib and his
Princes and they fell to the ground like dead men. Then he left them
and went to the prison tent, where he found Gharib and Sa'adan, guarded
by a thousand braves, who were overcome with sleep. So he cried out at
the guards, saying, "Woe to you! Sleep not; but watch your prisoners
and light the cressets." Presently he filled a cresset with firewood,
on which he strewed henbane, and lighting it, went round about the tent
with it, till the smoke entered the nostrils of the guards, and they
all fell asleep drowned by the drug; when he entered the tent and
finding Gharib and Sa'adan also insensible he aroused them by making
them smell and sniff at a sponge full of vinegar he had with him.
Thereupon he loosed their bonds and collars, and when they saw him,
they blessed him and rejoiced In him. After this they went forth and
took all the arms of the guards and Sahim said to them, "Go to your own
camp;" while he re-entered Ajib's pavilion and, wrapping him in his
cloak, lifted him up and made for the Moslem encampment. And the Lord,
the Compassionate, protected him, so that he reached Gharib's tent in
safety and unrolled the cloak before him. Gharib looked at its contents
and seeing his brother Ajib bound, cried out, "Allaho Akbar —God is
Most Great! Aidance! Victory!" And he blessed Sahim and bade him arouse
Ajib. So he made him smell the vinegar mixed with incense, and he
opened his eyes and, finding himself bound and shackled, hung down his
head earth wards. —And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
to say her permitted say.

When it was the Six Hundred and Fortieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that after Sahim had
aroused Ajib, whom he had made insensible with henbane and had brought
to his brother Gharib, the captive opened his eyes and, feeling himself
bound and shackled, hung down his head earthwards. Thereupon cried
Sahim, "O Accursed, lift thy head!" So he raised his eyes and found
himself amongst Arabs and Ajams and saw his brother seated on the
throne of his estate and the place of his power, wherefore he was
silent and spake not. Then Gharib cried out and said, "Strip me this
hound!" So they stripped him and came down upon him with whips, till
they weakened his body and subdued his pride, after which Gharib set
over him a guard of an hundred knights. And when this fraternal
correction had been administered they heard shouts of, "There is no God
but the God!" and "God is Most Great!" from the camp of the Kafirs. Now
the cause of this was that, ten days after his nephew King Al-Damigh,
Gharib's uncle, had set out from Al-Jazirah, with twenty thousand
horse, and on nearing the field of battle, had despatched one of his
scouts to get news. The man was absent a whole day, at the end of which
time he returned and told Al-Damigh all that had happened to Gharib
with his brother. So he waited till the night, when he fell upon the
Infidels, crying out, "Allaho Akbar!" and put them to the edge of the
biting scymitar. When Gharib heard the Takbir,[FN#8] he said to Sahim,
"Go find out the cause of these shouts and war-cries." So Sahim
repaired to the field of battle and questioned the slaves and camp
followers, who told him that King Al-Damigh had come up with twenty
thousand men and had fallen upon the idolaters by night, saying, "By
the virtue of Abraham the Friend, I will not forsake my brother's son,
but will play a brave man's part and beat back the host of Miscreants
and please the Omnipotent King!" So Sahim returned and told his uncle's
derring-do to Gharib, who cried out to his men, saying, "Don your arms
and mount your steeds and let us succour my father's brother!" So they
took horse and fell upon the Infidels and put them to the edge of the
sharp sword. By the morning they had killed nigh fifty thousand of the
Kafirs and made other thirty thousand prisoners, and the rest of Ajib's
army dispersed over the length and breadth of earth. Then the Moslems
returned in victory and triumph, and Gharib rode out to meet his uncle,
whom he saluted and thanked for his help. Quoth Al-Damigh, "I wonder if
that dog Ajib fell in this day's affair." Quoth Gharib, "O uncle, be of
good cheer and keep thine eyes cool and clear: know that he is with me
in chains." When Al-Damigh heard this he rejoiced with exceeding joy
and the two kings dismounted and entered the pavilion, but found no
Ajib there; whereupon Gharib exclaimed, "O glory of Abraham, the Friend
(with whom be peace!)," adding, "Alas, what an ill end is this to a
glorious day!" and he cried out to the tent-pitchers, saying, "Woe to
you! Where is my enemy who oweth me so much?" Quoth they, "When thou
mountedst and we went with thee, thou didst not bid us guard him;" and
Gharib exclaimed, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in
Allah, the Glorious, the Great!" But Al-Damigh said to him, "Hasten not
nor be concerned, for where can he go, and we in pursuit of him?" Now
the manner of Ajib's escape was in this wise. His page Sayyar had been
ambushed in the camp and when he saw Gharib mount and ride forth,
leaving none to guard his enemy Ajib, he could hardly credit his eyes.
So he waited awhile and presently crept to the tent and taking Ajib,
who was senseless for the pain of the bastinado, on his back, made off
with him into the open country and fared on at the top of his speed
from early night to the next day, till he came to a spring of water,
under an apple tree. There he set down Ajib from his back and washed
his face, whereupon he opened his eyes and seeing Sayyar, said to him,
"O Sayyar, carry me to Cufa that I may recover there and levy horsemen
and soldiers wherewith to overthrow my foe: and know, O Sayyar, that I
am anhungered." So Sayyar sprang up and going out to the desert caught
an ostrich-poult and brought it to his lord. Then he gathered fuel and
deftly using the fire sticks kindled a fire,, by which he roasted the
bird which he had hallal'd[FN#9] and fed Ajib with its flesh and gave
him to drink of the water of the spring, till his strength returned to
him, after which he went to one of the Badawi tribal encampments, and
stealing thence a steed mounted Ajib upon it and journeyed on with him
for many days till they drew near the city of Cufa. The Viceroy of the
capital came out to meet and salute the King, whom he found weak with
the beating his brother had inflicted upon him; and Ajib entered the
city and called his physicians. When they answered his summons, he bade
them heal him in less than ten days' time: they said, "We hear and we
obey," and they tended him till he became whole of the sickness that
was upon him and of the punishment. Then he commanded his Wazirs to
write letters to all his Nabobs and vassals, and he indited
one-and-twenty writs and despatched them to the governors, who
assembled their troops and set out for Cufa by forced marches. —And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Ajib sent
orders to assemble the troops, who marched forthright to Cufa.
Meanwhile, Gharib, being troubled for Ajib's escape, despatched in
quest of him a thousand braves, who dispersed on all sides and sought
him a day and a night, but found no trace of him; so they returned and
told Gharib, who called for his brother Sahim, but found him not;
whereat he was sore concerned, fearing for him from the shifts of
Fortune. And lo! Sahim entered and kissed ground before Gharib, who
rose, when he saw him, and asked, "Where hast thou been, O Sahim?" He
answered, "O King, I have been to Cufa and there I find that the dog
Ajib hath made his way to his capital and is healed of his hurts: eke,
he hath written letters to his vassals and sent them to his Nabobs who
have brought him troops." When Gharib heard this, he gave the command
to march; so they struck tents and fared for Cufa. When they came in
sight of the city, they found it compassed about with a host like the
surging main, having neither beginning nor end. So Gharib with his
troops encamped in face of the Kafirs and set up his standards, and
darkness fell down upon the two hosts, whereupon they lighted
camp-fires and kept watch till daybreak. Then King Gharib rose and
making the Wuzu-ablution, prayed a two- bow prayer according to the
rite of our father Abraham the Friend (on whom be the Peace!); after
which he commanded the battle drums to sound the point of war.
Accordingly, the kettle-drums beat to combat and the standards
fluttered whilst the fighting- men armour donned and their horses
mounted and themselves displayed and to plain fared. Now the first to
open the gate of war was King Al-Damigh, who urged his charger between
the two opposing armies and displayed himself and played with the
swords and the spears, till both hosts were confounded and at him
marvelled, after which he cried out, saying, "Who is for jousting? Let
no sluggard come out to me or weakling; for I am Al-Damigh, the King,
brother of Kundamir the King." Then there rushed forth a horseman of
the Kafirs, as he were a flame of fire, and drave at Al-Damigh, without
word said; but the King received him with a lance-thrust in the breast
so dour that the point issued from between his shoulders and Allah
hurried his soul to the fire, the abiding-place dire. Then came forth a
second he slew, and a third he slew likewise, and they ceased not to
come out to him and he to slay them, till he had made an end of
six-and-seventy fighting men. Hereupon the Miscreants and men of might
hung back and would not encounter him; but Ajib cried out to his men
and said, "Fie on you, O folk! if ye all go forth to him, one by one,
he will not leave any of you, sitting or standing. Charge on him all at
once and cleanse of them our earthly wone and strew their heads for
your horses' hoofs like a plain of stone!" So they waved the
awe-striking flag and host was heaped upon host; blood rained in
streams upon earth and railed and the Judge of battle ruled, in whose
ordinance is no unright. The fearless stood firm on feet in the stead
of fight, whilst the faint-heart gave back and took to flight thinking
the day would never come to an end nor the curtains of gloom would be
drawn by the hand of Night; and they ceased not to battle with swords
and to smite till light darkened and murk starkened. Then the kettle-
drums of the Infidels beat the retreat, but Gharib, refusing to stay
his arms, drave at the Paynimry, and the Believers in Unity, the
Moslems, followed him. How many heads and hands they shore, how many
necks and sinews they tore, how many knees and spines they mashed and
how many grown men and youths they to death bashed! With the first
gleam of morning grey the Infidels broke and fled away, in disorder and
disarray; and the Moslems followed them till middle-day and took over
twenty thousand of them, whom they brought to their tents in bonds to
stay. Then Gharib sat down before the gate of Cufa and commanded a
herald to proclaim pardon and protection for every wight who should
leave the worship to idols dight and profess the unity of His All-might
the Creator of mankind and of light and night. So was made proclamation
as he bade in the streets of Cufa and all that were therein embraced
the True Faith, great and small; then they issued forth in a body and
renewed their Islam before King Gharib, who rejoiced in them with
exceeding joy and his breast broadened and he threw off all annoy.
Presently he enquired of Mardas and his daughter Mahdiyah, and, being
told that he had taken up his abode behind the Red Mountain, he called
Sahim and said to him, "Find out for me what is become of thy father."
Sahim mounted steed without stay or delay and set his berry-brown spear
in rest and fared on in quest till he reached the Red Mountain, where
he sought for his father, yet found no trace of him nor of his tribe;
however, he saw in their stead an elder of the Arabs, a very old man,
broken with excess of years, and asked him of the folk and whither they
were gone. Replied he, "O my son, when Mardas heard of Gharib's descent
upon Cufa he feared with great fear and, taking his daughter and his
folk, set out with his handmaids and negroes into the wild and wold,
and I wot not whither he went." So Sahim, hearing the Shaykh's words,
returned to Gharib and told him thereof, whereat he was greatly
concerned. Then he sat down on his father's throne and, opening his
treasuries, distributed largesse to each and every of his braves. And
he took up his abode in Cufa and sent out spies to get news of Ajib. He
also summoned the Grandees of the realm, who came and did him homage;
as also did the citizens and he bestowed on them sumptuous robes of
honour and commended the Ryots to their care. —And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Gharib, after
giving robes of honour to the citizens of Cufa and commending the Ryots
to their care, went out on a day of the days to hunt, with an hundred
horse, and fared on till he came to a Wady, abounding in trees and
fruits and rich in rills and birds. It was a pasturing-place for roes
and gazelles, to the spirit a delight whose scents reposed from the
langour of fight. They encamped in the valley, for the day was dear and
bright, and there passed the night. On the morrow, Gharib made the
Wuzu-ablution and prayed the two-bow dawn-prayer, offering up praise
and thanks to Almighty Allah; when, lo and behold! there arose a
clamour and confusion in the meadows, and he bade Sahim go see what was
to do. So Sahim mounted forthright and rode till he espied goods being
plundered and horses haltered and women carried off and children crying
out. Whereupon he questioned one of the shepherds, saying, "What be all
this?"; and they replied, "This is the Harim of Mardas, Chief of the
Banu Kahtan, and his good and that of his clan; for yesterday Jamrkan
slew Mardas and made prize of his women and children and household
stuff and all the belonging of his tribe. It is his wont to go
a-raiding and to cut off highways and waylay wayfarers and he is a
furious tyrant; neither Arabs nor Kings can prevail against him and he
is the scourge and curse of the country." Now when Sahim heard these
news of his sire's slaughter and the looting of his Harim and property,
he returned to Gharib and told him the case, wherefore fire was added
to his fire and his spirit chafed to wipe out his shame and his
blood-wit to claim: so he rode with his men after the robbers till he
overtook them and fell upon them, crying out and saying, "Almighty
Allah upon the rebel, the traitor, the infidel!" and he slew in a
single charge one-and-twenty fighting- men. Then he halted in
mid-field, with no coward's heart, and cried out, "Where is Jamrkan?
Let him come out to me, that I may make him quaff the cup of disgrace
and rid of him earth's face!" Hardly had he made an end of speaking,
when forth rushed Jamrkan, as he were a calamity of calamities or a
piece of a mountain, cased in steel. He was a mighty huge[FN#10]
Amalekite; and he drave at Gharib without speech or salute, like the
fierce tyrant he was. And he was armed with a mace of China steel, so
heavy, so potent, that had he smitten a hill he had smashed it. Now
when he charged, Gharib met him like a hungry lion, and the brigand
aimed a blow at his head with his mace; but he evaded it and it smote
the earth and sank therein half a cubit deep. Then Gharib took his
battle flail and smiting Jamrkan on the wrist, crushed his fingers and
the mace dropped from his grasp; whereupon Gharib bent down from his
seat in selle and snatching it up, swiftlier than the blinding leven,
smote him therewith full on the flat of the ribs, and he fell to the
earth like a long-stemmed palm-tree. So Sahim took him and pinioning
him, haled him off with a rope, and Gharib's horsemen fell on those of
Jamrkan and slew fifty of them: the rest fled; nor did they cease
flying till they reached their tribal camp and raised their voices in
clamour; whereupon all who were in the Castle came out to meet them and
asked the news. They told the tribe what had passed; and, when they
heard that their chief was a prisoner, they set out for the valley
vying one with other in their haste to deliver him. Now when King
Gharib had captured Jamrkan and had seen his braves take flight, he
dismounted and called for Jamrkan, who humbled himself before him,
saying, "I am under thy protection, O champion of the Age!" Replied
Gharib, "O dog of the Arabs, dost thou cut the road for the servants of
Almighty Allah, and fearest thou not the Lord of the Worlds?" "O my
master," asked Jamrkan, "and who is the Lord of the Worlds?" "O dog,"
answered Gharib, "and what calamity dost thou worship?" He said, "O my
lord, I worship a god made of dates[FN#11] kneaded with butter and
honey, and at times I eat him and make me another." When Gharib heard
this, he laughed till he fell backwards and said, "O miserable, there
is none worship- worth save Almighty Allah, who created thee and
created all things and provideth all creatures with daily bread, from
whom nothing is hid and He over all things is Omnipotent." Quoth
Jamrkan, "And where is this great god, that I may worship him?" Quoth
Gharib, "O fellow, know that this god's name is Allah—the God—and it is
He who fashioned the heavens and the earth and garred the trees to grow
and the waters to flow. He created wild beasts and birds and Paradise
and Hell-fire and veileth Himself from all eyes seeing and of none
being seen. He, and He only, is the Dweller on high. Extolled be His
perfection! There is no god but He!" When Jamrkan heard these words,
the ears of his heart were opened; his skin shuddered with
horripilation and he said, "O my lord, what shall I say that I may
become of you and that this mighty Lord may accept of me?" Replied
Gharib, "Say, 'There is no god but the God and Abraham the Friend is
the Apostle of God!'" " So he pronounced the profession of the Faith
and was written of the people of felicity. Then quoth Gharib, " Say me,
hast thou tasted the sweetness of Al-Islam?"; and quoth the other,
"Yes;" whereupon Gharib cried, "Loose his bonds!" So they unbound him
and he kissed ground before Gharib and his feet. Now whilst this was
going on, behold, they espied a great cloud of dust that towered till
it walled the word. —And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Jamrkan
islamised and kissed the ground between the hands of Gharib; and, as
they were thus, behold, a great cloud of dust towered till it walled
the wold and Gharib said to Sahim, "Go and see for us what it be." So
he went forth, like a bird in full flight, and presently returned,
saying, "O King of the Age, this dust is of the Banu Amir, the comrades
of Jamrkan." Whereupon quoth Gharib to the new Moslem, "Ride out to thy
people and offer to them Al- Islam: an they profess, they shall be
saved; but, an they refuse, we will put them to the sword." So Jamrkan
mounted and driving steed towards his tribesmen, cried out to them; and
they knew him and dismounting, came up to him on foot and said, "We
rejoice in thy safety, O our lord!" Said he, "O folk, whoso obeyeth me
shall be saved; but whoso gainsayeth me, I will cut him in twain with
this scymitar." And they made answer, saying, "Command us what thou
wilt, for we will not oppose thy commandment." Quoth he, "Then say with
me, 'There is no god but the God and Abraham is the Friend of God!' "
They asked, "O our lord, whence haddest thou these words?" And he told
them what had befallen him with Gharib, adding, "O folk, know ye not
that I am your chief in battle-plain and where men of cut and thrust
are fain; and yet a man single-handed me to prisoner hath ta'en and
made me the cup of shame and disgrace to drain?" When they heard his
speech, they spoke the word of Unity and Jamrkan led them to Gharib, at
whose hands they renewed their profession of Al-Islam and wished him
glory and victory, after they had kissed the earth before him. Gharib
rejoiced in them and said to them, "O folk, return to your people and
expound Al-Islam to them;" but all replied, "O our lord, we will never
leave thee, whilst we live; but we will go and fetch our families and
return to thee." And Gharib said, "Go, and join me at the city of
Cufa." So Jamrkan and his comrades returned to their tribal camp and
offered Al-Islam to their women and children, who all to a soul
embraced the True Faith, after which they dismantled their abodes and
struck their tents and set out for Cufa, driving before them their
steeds, camels and sheep. During this time Gharib returned to Cufa,
where the horsemen met him in state. He entered his palace and sat down
on his sire's throne with his champions ranged on either hand. Then the
spies came forwards, and informed him that his brother Ajib had made
his escape and had taken refuge with Jaland[FN#12] bin Karkar, lord of
the city of Oman and land of Al-Yaman; whereupon Gharib cried aloud to
his host, "O men, make you ready to march in three days." Then he
expounded Al-Islam to the thirty thousand men he had captured in the
first affair and exhorted them to profess and take service with him.
Twenty thousand embraced the Faith, but the rest refused and he slew
them. Then came forward Jamrkan and his tribe and kissed the ground
before Gharib, who bestowed on him a splendid robe of honour and made
him captain of his vanguard, saying, "O Jamrkan, mount with the Chiefs
of thy kith and kin and twenty thousand horse and fare on before us to
the land of Jaland bin Karkar." "Hearkening and obedience," answered
Jamrkan and, leaving the women and children of the tribe in Cufa, he
set forward. Then Gharib passed in review the Harim of Mardas and his
eye lit upon Mahdiyah, who was among the women, wherewith he fell down
fainting. They sprinkled rose-water on his face, till he came to
himself, when he embraced Mahdiyah and carried her into a
sitting-chamber, where he sat with her; and they twain lay together
that night without fornication. Next morning he went out and sitting
down on the throne of his kingship, robed his uncle Al-Damigh with a
robe of honour; and appointed him his viceroy over all Al-Irak,
commending Mahdiyah to his care, till he should return from his
expedition against Ajib; and, when the order was accepted, he set out
for the land of Al-Yaman and the City of Oman with twenty thousand
horse and ten thousand foot. Now, when Ajib and his defeated army drew
in sight of Oman, King Jaland saw the dust of their approach and sent
to find out its meaning, scouts who returned and said, "Verily this is
the dust of one  hight Ajib, lord of Al-Irak." And Jaland wondered at
his coming to his country and, when assured of the tidings, he said to
his officers, "Fare ye forth and meet him." So they went out and met
him and pitched tents for him at the city-gate; and Ajib entered in to
Jaland, weeping eyed and heavy-hearted. Now Jaland's wife was the
daughter of Ajib's paternal uncle and he had children by her; so, when
he saw his kinsman in this plight, he asked for the truth of what ailed
him and Ajib told him all that had befallen him, first and last, from
his brother and said, "O King, Gharib biddeth the folk worship the Lord
of the Heavens and forbiddeth them from the service of simulacres and
other of the gods." When Jaland heard these words he raged and revolted
and said, "By the virtue of the Sun, Lord of Life and Light, I will not
leave one of thy brother's folk in existence! But where didst thou quit
them and how many men are they?" Answered Ajib, "I left them in Cufa
and they be fifty thousand horse." Whereupon Jaland called his Wazir
Jawámard,[FN#13] saying, "Take thee seventy thousand horse and fare to
Cufa and bring me the Moslems alive, that I may torture them with all
manner of tortures." So Jawamard departed with his host and fared
through the first day and the second till the seventh day, when he came
to a Wady abounding in trees and rills and fruits. Here he called a
halt — And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Jaland
sent Jawamard with his army to Cufa, they came upon a Wady abounding in
trees and rills where a halt was called and they rested till the middle
of the Night, when the Wazir gave the signal for departure and
mounting, rode on before them till hard upon dawn, at which time he
descended into a well-wooded valley, whose flowers were fragrant and
whose birds warbled on boughs, as they swayed gracefully to and fro,
and Satan blew into his sides and puffed him up with pride and he
improvised these couplets and cried,

"I plunge with my braves in the seething sea; * Seize the foe in
     my strength and my valiancy;
And the doughtiest knights wot me well to be * Friend to friend
     and fierce foe to mine enemy.
I will load Ghanb with the captive's chains * Right soon, and
     return in all joy and glee;
For I've donned my mail and my weapons wield * And on all sides
     charge at the chivalry."[FN#14]

Hardly had Jawamard made an end of his verses when there came out upon
him from among the trees a horseman of terrible mien covered and clad
in steely sheen, who cried out to him, saying, "Stand, O riff-raff of
the Arabs! Doff thy dress and ground thine arms- gear and dismount thy
destrier and be off with thy life!" When Jawamard heard this, the light
in his eyes became darkest night and he drew his sabre and drove at
Jamrkan, for he it was, saying, "O thief of the Arabs, wilt thou cut
the road for me, who am captain of the host of Jaland bin Karkar and am
come to bring Gharib and his men in bond?" When Jamrkan heard these
words, he said, "How cooling is this to my heart and liver!" And he
made at Jawamard versifying in these couplets,

"I'm the noted knight in the field of fight, * Whose sabre and
     spear every foe affright!
Jamrkan am I, to my foes a fear, * With a lance lunge known unto
     every knight:
Gharib is my lord, nay my pontiff, my prince, * Where the two
     hosts dash very lion of might:
An Imam of the Faith, pious, striking awe * On the plain where
     his foes like the fawn take flight;
Whose voice bids folk to the faith of the Friend, * False,
     doubling idols and gods despite!"

Now Jamrkan had fared on with his tribesmen ten days' journey from Cufa
city and called a halt on the eleventh day till midnight, when he
ordered a march and rode on devancing them till he descended into the
valley aforesaid and heard Jawamard reciting his verses. So he drave at
him as the driving of a ravening lion, and smiting him with his sword,
clove him in twain and waited till his captains came up, when he told
them what had passed and said to them, "Take each of you five thousand
men and disperse round about the Wady, whilst I and the Banu Amir fall
upon the enemy's van, shouting, Allaho Akbar God is Most Great! When ye
hear my slogan, do ye charge them, crying like me upon the Lord, and
smite them with the sword." "We hear and we obey," answered they and
turning back to their braves did his bidding and spread themselves
about the sides of the valley in the twilight forerunning the dawn.
Presently, lo and behold! up came the army of Al-Yaman, like a flock of
sheep, filling plain and steep, and Jamrkan and the Banu Amir fell upon
them, shouting, "Allaho Akbar!" till all heard it, Moslems and
Miscreants. Whereupon the True Believers ambushed in the valley
answered from every side and the hills and mountains responsive cried
and all things replied, green and dried, saying, "God is Most Great!
Aidance and Victory to us from on High! Shame to the Miscreants who His
name deny!" And the Kafirs were confounded and smote one another with
sabres keen whilst the True Believers and pious fell upon them like
flames of fiery sheen and naught was seen but heads flying and blood
jetting and faint-hearts hieing. By the time they could see one
another's faces, two-thirds of the Infidels had perished and Allah
hastened their souls to the fire and abiding-place dire. The rest fled
and to the deserts sped whilst the Moslems pursued them to slay and
take captives till middle-day, when they returned in triumph with seven
thousand prisoners; and but six and twenty thousand of the Infidels
escaped and the most of them wounded. Then the Moslems collected the
horses and arms, the loads and tents of the enemy and despatched them
to Cufa with an escort of a thousand horse;—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Jamrkan in his
battle with Jawamard slew him and slew his men; and, after taking many
prisoners and much money and many horses and loads, sent them with an
escort of a thousand riders, to Cufa city. Then he and the army of
Al-Islam dismounted and expounded The saving Faith to the prisoners,
who made profession with heart and tongue; whereupon they released them
from bonds and embraced them and rejoiced in them. Then Jamrkan made
his troops, who had swelled to a mighty many, rest a day and a night
and marched with the dawn, intending to attack Jaland bin Karkar in the
city Of Oman; whilst the thousand horse fared back to Cufa with the
loot. When they reached the city, they went in to King Gharib and told
him what had passed, whereat he rejoiced and gave them joy and, turning
to the Ghul of the Mountain, said, "Take horse with twenty thousand and
follow Jamrkan." So Sa'adan and his sons mounted and set out, amid
twenty thousand horse for Oman. Meanwhile, the fugitives of the
defeated Kafirs reached Oman and went in to Jaland, weeping and crying,
"Woe!" and "Ruin!" whereat he was confounded and said to them, "What
calamity hath befallen you?" So they told him what had happened and he
said, "Woe to you! How many men were they?" They replied, "O King,
there were twenty standards, under each a thousand men." When Jaland
heard these words he said, "May the sun pour no blessing on you! Fie
upon you! What, shall twenty thousand overcome you, and you seventy
thousand horse and Jawamard able to withstand three thousand in field
of fight?" Then, in the excess of his rage and mortification, he bared
his blade and cried out to those who were present, saying, "Fall on
them!" So the courtiers drew their swords upon the fugitives and
annihilated them to the last man and cast them to the dogs. Then Jaland
cried aloud to his son, saying, "Take an hundred thousand horse and go
to Al-Irak and lay it waste altogether." Now this son's name was
Kúraján and there was no doughtier knight in all the force; for he
could charge single-handed three thousand riders. So he and his host
made haste to equip themselves and marched in battle-array, rank
following rank, with the Prince at their head, glorying in himself and
improvising these couplets,

"I'm Al-Kurajan, and my name is known * To beat all who in wold
     or in city wone!
How many a soldier my sword at will * Struck down like a cow on
     the ground bestrown?
How many a soldier I've forced to fly * And have rolled their
     heads as a ball is thrown?
Now I'll drive and harry the land Irak[FN#15] * And like rain
     I'll shower the blood of fone;
And lay hands on Ghanb and his men, whose doom * To the wise a
     warning shall soon be shown!"

The host fared on twelve days' journey and, while they were still
marching, behold, a great dust cloud arose before them and walled the
horizon and the whole region. So Kurajan sent out scouts, saying, "Go
forth and bring me tidings of what meaneth this dust." They went till
they passed under the enemy's standards and presently returning said,
"O King, verily this is the dust of the Moslems." Whereat he was glad
and said, "Did ye count them?" And they answered, "We counted the
colours and they numbered twenty." Quoth he, "By my faith, I will not
send one man-at-arms against them, but will go forth to them alone by
myself and strew their heads under the horses' hooves!" Now this was
the army of Jamrkan who, espying the host of the Kafirs and seeing them
as a surging sea, called a halt; so his troops pitched the tents and
set up the standards, calling upon the name of the All-wise One, the
Creator of light and gloom, Lord of all creatures, Who seeth while Him
none see, the High to infinity, extolled and exalted be He! There is no
God but He! The Miscreants also halted and pitched their tents, and
Kurajan said to them "Keep on your arms, and in armour sleep, for
during the last watch of the night we will mount and trample yonder
handful under feet!" Now one of Jamrkan's spies was standing nigh and
heard what Kurajan had contrived; so he returned to the host and told
his chief who said to them, "Arm yourselves and as soon as it is Night,
bring me all the mules and camels and hang all the bells and clinkets
and rattles ye have about their necks." Now they had with them more
than twenty thousand camels and mules. So they waited till the Infidels
fell asleep, when Jamrkan commanded them to mount, and they rose to
ride and on the Lord of the Worlds they relied. Then said Jamrkan,
"Drive the camels and mules to the Miscreants' camp and push them with
your spears for goads!" They did as he bade and the beasts rushed upon
the enemy's tents, whilst the bells and clinkets and rattles
jangled[FN#16] and the Moslems followed at their heels, shouting, "God
is Most Great!'' till all the hills and mountains resounded with the
name of the Highmost Deity, to whom belong glory and majesty! The
cattle hearing this terrible din, took fright and rushed upon the tents
and trampled the folk, as they lay asleep.—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Jamrkan
fell upon them with his men and steeds and camels, and the camp lay
sleeping, the idolaters started up in confusion and, snatching up their
arms, fell upon one another with smiting, till the most part was
slaughtered. And when the day broke, they looked and found no Moslem
slain, but saw them all on horseback, armed and armoured; wherefore
they knew that this was a sleight which had been played upon them, and
Kurajan cried out to the remnant of his folk, "O sons of whores, what
we had a mind to do with them, that have they done with us and their
craft hath gotten the better of our cunning." And they were about to
charge when, lo and behold! a cloud of dust rose high and walled the
horizon-sky, when the wind smote it, so that it spired aloft and spread
pavilion-wise in the lift and there it hung; and presently appeared
beneath it the glint of helmet and gleam of hauberk and splendid
warriors, baldrick'd with their tempered swords and holding in rest
their supple spears. When the Kafirs saw this, they held back from the
battle and each army sent out, to know the meaning of this dust,
scouts, who returned with the news that it was an army of Moslems. Now
this was the host of the Mountain- Ghul whom Gharib had despatched to
Jamrkan's aid, and Sa'adan himself rode in their van. So the two hosts
of the True Believers joined company and rushing upon the Paynimry like
a flame of fire, plied them with keen sword and Rudaynian spear and
quivering lance, what while day was darkened and eyes for the much dust
starkened. The valiant stood fast and the faint-hearted coward fled and
to the wilds and the wolds swift sped, whilst the blood over earth was
like torrents shed; nor did they cease from fight till the day took
flight and in gloom came the night. Then the Moslems drew apart from
the Miscreants and returned to their tents, where they ate and slept,
till the darkness fled away and gave place to smiling day; when they
prayed the dawn prayer and mounted to battle. Now Kurajan had said to
his men as they drew off from fight (for indeed two thirds of their
number had perished by sword and spear), "O folk, to-morrow, I will
champion it in the stead of war where cut and thrust jar, and where
braves push and wheel I will take the field." So, as soon as light was
seen and morn appeared with its shine and sheen, took horse the hosts
twain and shouted their slogans amain and bared the brand and hent
lance in hand and in ranks took stand. The first to open the door of
war was Kurajan, who cried out, saying, "Let no coward come out to me
this day nor craven!" Whereupon Jamrkan and Sa'adan stood by the
colours, but there ran at him a captain of the Banu Amir and the two
drave each at other awhile, like two rams butting. Presently Kurajan
seized the Moslem by the jerkin under his hauberk and, dragging him
from his saddle, dashed him to the ground where he left him; upon which
the Kafirs laid hands on him and bound him and bore him off to their
tents; whilst Kurajan wheeled about and careered and offered battle,
till another captain came out, whom also he took prisoner; nor did he
leave to do thus till he had made prize of seven captains before
mid-day. Then Jamrkan cried out with so mighty a cry, that the whole
field made reply and heard it the armies twain, and ran at Kurajan with
a heart in rageful pain, improvising these couplets,

"Jamrkan am I! and a man of might, * Whom the warriors fear with
     a sore affright:
I waste the forts and I leave the walls * To wail and weep for
     the wights I smite:
Then, O Kurajan, tread the rightful road * And quit the paths of
     thy foul unright:
Own the One True God, who dispread the skies * And made founts to
     flow and the hills pegged tight:
An the slave embrace the True Faith, he'll 'scape * Hell pains
     and in Heaven be deckt and dight!"

When Kurajan heard these words, he snarked and snorted and foully
abused the sun and the moon and drave at Jamrkan, versifying with these

"I'm Kurajan, of this age the knight;  * And my shade to the
     lions of Shara'[FN#17] is blight:
I storm the forts and snare kings of beasts * And warriors fear
     me in field of fight;
Then, Harkye Jamrkan, if thou doubt my word, * Come forth to the
     combat and try my might!"

When Jamrkan heard these verses, he charged him with a stout heart and
they smote each at other with swords till the two hosts lamented for
them, and they lunged with lance and great was the clamour between
them: nor did they leave fighting till the time of mid-afternoon prayer
was passed and the day began to wane. Then Jamrkan drave at Kurajan and
smiting him on the breast with his mace,[FN#18] cast him to the ground,
as he were the trunk of a palm-tree; and the Moslems pinioned him and
dragged him off with ropes like a camel. Now when the Miscreants saw
their Prince captive, a hot fever-fit of ignorance seized on them and
they bore down upon the True Believers thinking to rescue him; but the
Moslem champions met them and left most of them prostrate on the earth,
whilst the rest turned and sought safety in flight, seeking surer site,
while the clanking sabres their back-sides smite. The Moslems ceased
not pursuing them till they had scattered them over mount and word,
when they returned from them to the spoil; whereof was great store of
horses and tents and so forth:—good look to it for a spoil! Then
Jamrkan went in to Kurajan and expounded to him Al-Islam, threatening
him with death unless he embraced the Faith. But he refused; so they
cut off his head and stuck it on a spear, after which they fared on
towards Oman[FN#19] city. But as regards the Kafirs, the survivors
returned to Jaland and made known to him the slaying of his son and the
slaughter of his host, hearing which he cast his crown to the ground
and buffeting his face, till the blood ran from his nostrils, fell
fainting to the floor. They sprinkled rose-water on his head, till he
came to himself and cried to his Wazir, "Write letters to all my
Governors and Nabobs, and bid them leave not a smiter with the sword
nor a lunger with the lance nor a bender of the bow, but bring them all
to me in one body." So he wrote letters and despatched them by runners
to the Governors, who levied their power and joined the King with a
prevailing host, whose number was one hundred and eighty thousand men.
Then they made ready tents and camels and noble steeds and were about
to march when, behold, up came Jamrkan and Sa'adan the Ghul, with
seventy thousand horse, as they were lions fierce-faced, all
steel-encased. When Jaland saw the Moslems trooping on he rejoiced and
said, "By the virtue of the Sun, and her resplendent light, I will not
leave alive one of my foes; no, not one to carry the news, and I will
lay waste the land of Al-Irak, that I may take my wreak for my son, the
havoc-making champion bold; nor shall my fire be quenched or cooled!"
Then he turned to Ajib and said to him, "O dog of Al-Irak, 'twas thou
broughtest this calamity on us! But by the virtue of that which I
worship, except I avenge me of mine enemy I will do thee die after
foulest fashion!" When Ajib heard these words he was troubled with sore
trouble and blamed himself; but he waited till nightfall, when the
Moslems had pitched their tents for rest. Now he had been degraded and
expelled the royal camp together with those who were left to him of his
suite: so he said to them, "O my kinsmen, know that Jaland and I are
dismayed with exceeding dismay at the coming of the Moslems, and I know
that he will not avail to protect me from my brother nor from any
other; so it is my counsel that we make our escape, whilst all eyes
sleep, and flee to King Ya'arub bin Kahtán,[FN#20] for that he hath
more of men and is stronger of reign." They, hearing his advice
exclaimed "Right is thy rede," whereupon he bade them kindle fires at
their tent-doors and march under cover of the night. They did his
bidding and set out, so by daybreak they had already fared far away. As
soon as it was morning Jaland mounted with two hundred and sixty
thousand fighting-men, clad cap-à-pie in hauberks and cuirasses and
strait-knit mail-coats, the kettle-drums beat a point of war and all
drew out for cut and thrust and fight and fray. Then Jamrkan and
Sa'adan rode out with forty thousand stalwart fighting-men, under each
standard a thousand cavaliers, doughty champions, foremost in
champaign. The two hosts drew out in battles and bared their blades and
levelled their limber lances, for the drinking of the cup of death. The
first to open the gate of strife was Sa'adan, as he were a mountain of
syenite or a Marid of the Jinn. Then dashed out to him a champion of
the Infidels, and the Ghul slew him and casting him to the earth, cried
out to his sons and slaves, saying, "Light the fire and roast me this
dead one." They did as he bade and brought him the roast and he ate it
and crunched the bones, whilst the Kafirs stood looking on from afar;
and they cried out, "Oh for aid from the light- giving Sun!" and were
affrighted at the thought of being slain by Sa'adan. Then Jaland
shouted to his men, saying, "Slay me yonder loathsome beast!" Whereupon
another captain of his host drove at the Ghul; but he slew him and he
ceased not to slay horseman after horseman, till he had made an end of
thirty men. With this the blamed Kafirs held back and feared to face
him, crying, "Who shall cope with Jinns and Ghuls?" But Jaland raised
his voice saying, "Let an hundred horse charge him and bring him to me,
bound or slain." So an hundred horse set upon Sa'adan with swords and
spears, and he met them with a heart firmer than flint, proclaiming the
unity of the Requiting King, whom no one thing diverteth from other
thing. Then he cried aloud, "Allaho Akbar!" and, smiting them with his
sword, made their heads fly and in one onset he slew of them
four-and-seventy whereupon the rest took to flight. So Jaland shouted
aloud to ten of his captains, each commanding a thousand men, and said
to them, "Shoot his horse with arrows till it fall under him, and then
lay hands on him." Therewith ten thousand horse drove at Sa'adan who
met them with a stout heart; and Jamrkan, seeing this, bore down upon
the Miscreants with his Moslems, crying out, "God is Most Great!"
Before they could reach the Ghul, the enemy had slain his steed and
taken him prisoner; but they ceased not to charge the Infidels, till
the day grew dark for dust and eyes were blinded, and the sharp sword
clanged while firm stood the valiant cavalier and destruction overtook
the faint-heart in his fear; till the Moslems were amongst the Paynims
like a white patch on a black bull.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that battle raged
between the Moslems and the Paynims till the True Believers were like a
white patch on a black bull. Nor did they stint from the mellay till
the darkness fell down, when they drew apart, after there had been
slain of the Infidels men without compt. Then Jamrkan and his men
returned to their tents; but they were in great grief for Sa'adan, so
that neither meat nor sleep was sweet to them, and they counted their
host and found that less than a thousand had been slain. But Jamrkan
said, "O folk, to- morrow I will go forth into the battle-plain and
place where cut and thrust obtain, and slay their champions and make
prize of their families after taking them captives and I will ransom
Sa'adan therewith, by the leave of the Requiting King, whom no one
thing diverteth from other thing!" Wherefore their hearts were
heartened and they joyed as they separated to their tents. Meanwhile
Jaland entered his pavilion and sitting down on his sofa of estate,
with his folk about him, called for Sa'adan and forthright on his
coming, said to him, "O dog run wood and least of the Arab brood and
carrier of firewood, who was it slew my son Kurajan, the brave of the
age, slayer of heroes and caster down of warriors?" Quoth the Ghul,
"Jamrkan slew him, captain of the armies of King Gharib, Prince of
cavaliers, and I roasted and ate him, for I was anhungered." When
Jaland heard these words, his eyes sank into his head for rage and he
bade his swordbearer smite Sa'adan's neck. So he came forward in that
intent, whereupon Sa'adan stretched himself mightily and bursting his
bonds, snatched the sword from the headsman and hewed off his head.
Then he made at Jaland who threw himself down from the throne and fled;
whilst Sa'adan fell on the bystanders and killed twenty of the King's
chief officers, and all the rest took to flight. Therewith loud rose
the crying in the camp of the Infidels and the Ghul sallied forth of
the pavilion and falling upon the troops smote them with the sword,
right and left, till they opened and left a lane for him to pass; nor
did he cease to press forward, cutting at them on either side, till he
won free of the Miscreants' tents and made for the Moslem camp. Now
these had heard the uproar among their enemies and said, "Haply some
calamity hath befallen them." But whilst they were in perplexity,
behold, Sa adan stood amongst them and they rejoiced at his coming with
exceeding joy; more especially Jamrkan, who saluted him with the salam
as did other True Believers and gave him joy of his escape. Such was
the case with the Moslems; but as regards the Miscreants, when, after
the Ghul's departure, they and their King returned to their tents,
Jaland said to them, "O folk, by the virtue of the Sun's light-giving
ray and by the darkness of the Night and the light of the Day and the
Stars that stray, I thought not this day to have escaped death in
mellay; for, had I fallen into yonder fellow's hands, he had eaten me,
as I were a kernel of wheat or a barley-corn or any other grain." They
re- plied, "O King, never saw we any do the like of this Ghul." And he
said, "O folk, to-morrow do ye all don arms and mount steed and trample
them under your horses' hooves." Meanwhile the Moslems had ended their
rejoicings at Sa'adan's return and Jamrkan said to them, "To-morrow, I
will show you my derring-do and what behoveth the like of me, for by
the virtue of Abraham the Friend, I will slay them with the foulest of
slaughters and smite them with the bite of the sword, till all who have
under- standing confounded at them shall stand. But I mean to attack
both right and left wings; so, when ye see me drive at the King under
the standards, do ye charge behind me with a resolute charge, and
Allah's it is to decree what thing shall be!" Accord- ingly the two
sides lay upon their arms till the day broke through night and the sun
appeared to sight. Then they mounted swiftlier than the twinkling of
the eyelid; the raven of the wold croaked and the two hosts, looking
each at other with the eye of fascination, formed in line-array and
prepared for fight and fray. The first to open the chapter of war was
Jamrkan who wheeled and careered and offered fight in field; and Jaland
and his men were about to charge when, behold, a cloud of dust uprolled
till it walled the wold and overlaid the day. Then the four winds smote
it and away it floated, torn to rags, and there appeared beneath it
cavaliers, with helms black and garb white and many a princely knight
and lances that bite and swords that smite and footmen who lion-like
knew no affright. Seeing this both armies left fighting and sent out
scouts to reconnoitre and report who thus had come in main and might.
So they went and within the dust cloud disappeared from sight, and
returned after awhile with the news aright that the approaching host
was one of Moslems, under the command of King Gharib. When the True
Believers heard from the scouts of the coming of their King, they
rejoiced and driving out to meet him, dismounted and kissed the earth
between his hands—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Moslems saw the presence of their King Gharib, they joyed with
exceeding joy; and, kissing the earth between his hands, saluted him
and gat around him whilst he welcomed them and rejoiced in their
safety. Then they escorted him to their camp and pitched pavilions for
him and set up standards; and Gharib sat down on his couch of estate,
with his Grandees about him; and they related to him all that had
befallen, especially to Sa'adan Meanwhile the Kafirs sought for Ajib
and finding him not among them nor in their tents, told Jaland of his
flight, whereat his Doomsday rose and he bit his fingers, saying, "By
the Sun's light-giving round, he is a perfidious hound and hath fled
with his rascal rout to desert-ground. But naught save force of hard
fighting will serve us to repel these foes; so fortify your resolves
and hearten your hearts and beware of the Moslems." And Gharib also
said to the True Believers, "Strengthen your courage and fortify your
hearts and seek aid of your Lord, beseeching him to vouchsafe you the
victory over your enemies." They replied, "O King, soon thou shalt see
what we will do in battle-plain where men cut and thrust amain." So the
two hosts slept till the day arose with its sheen and shone and the
rising sun rained light upon hill and down, when Gharib prayed the
two-bow prayer, after the rite of Abraham the Friend (on whom be the
Peace!) and wrote a letter, which he despatched by his brother Sahim to
the King of the Kafirs. When Sahim reached the enemies' camp, the
guards asked him what he wanted, and he answered them, "I want your
ruler.''[FN#21] Quoth they, "Wait till we consult him anent thee;" and
he waited, whilst they went in to their Sovran and told him of the
coming of a messenger, and he cried, "Hither with him to me!" So they
brought Sahim before Jaland, who said to him, "Who hath sent thee?"
Quoth he, King Gharib sends me, whom Allah hath made ruler over Arab
and Ajam; receive his letter and return its reply." Jaland took the
writ and opening it, read as follows, "In the name of Allah, the
Compassionating, the Compassionate * the One, the All-knowing, the
supremely Great * the Immemorial, the Lord of Noah and Sálih and Húd
and Abraham and of all things He made! * The Peace be on him who
followeth in the way of righteousness and who feareth the issues of
frowardness * who obeyeth the Almighty King and followeth the Faith
saving and preferreth the next world to any present thing! * But
afterwards: O Jaland, none is worthy of worship save Allah alone, the
Victorious, the One, Creator of night and day and the sphere revolving
alway * Who sendeth the holy Prophets and garreth the streams to flow
and the trees to grow, who vaulted the heavens and spread out the earth
like a carpet below * Who feedeth the birds in their nests and the wild
beasts in the deserts * for He is Allah the All-powerful, the
Forgiving, the Long-suffering, the Protector, whom eye comprehendeth on
no wise and who maketh night on day arise * He who sent down the
Apostles and their Holy Writ. Know, O Jaland, that there is no faith
but the Faith of Abraham the Friend; so cleave to the Creed of
Salvation and be saved from the biting glaive and the Fire which
followeth the grave * But, an thou refuse Al-Islam look for ruin to
haste and thy reign to be waste and thy traces untraced * And, lastly,
send me the dog Ajib hight that I may take from him my father's and
mother's blood-wit." When Jaland had read this letter, he said to
Sahim, "Tell thy lord that Ajib hath fled, he and his folk, and I know
not whither he is gone; but, as for Jaland, he will not forswear his
faith, and to-morrow, there shall be battle between us and the Sun
shall give us the victory." So Sahim returned to his brother with this
reply, and when the morning morrowed, the Moslems donned their arms and
armour and bestrode their stout steeds, calling aloud on the name of
the All-conquering King, Creator of bodies and souls, and magnifying
Him with "Allaho Akbar." Then the kettle-drums of battle beat until
earth trembled, and sought the field all the lordly warriors and
doughty champions. The first to open the gate of battle was Jamrkan,
who drave his charger into mid-plain and played with sword and javelin,
till the understanding was amazed; after which he cried out, saying,
"Ho! who is for tilting? Ho! who is for fighting? Let no sluggard come
out to me to-day nor weakling! I am the slayer of Kurajan bin Jaland;
who will come forth to avenge him?" When Jaland heard the name of his
son, he cried out to his men, "O whore-sons, bring me yonder horseman
who slew my son, that I may eat his flesh and drink his blood." So an
hundred fighting-men charged at Jamrkan, but he slew the most part of
them and put their chief to flight; which feat when Jaland saw, he
cried out to his folk, "At him all at once and assault him with one
assault." Accordingly they waved the awe-striking banners and host was
heaped on host; Gharib rushed on with his men and Jamrkan did the same
and the two sides met like two seas together clashing. The Yamáni sword
and spear wrought havoc and breasts and bellies were rent, whilst both
armies saw the Angel of Death face to face and the dust of the battle
rose to the skirts of the sky. Ears went deaf and tongues went dumb and
doom from every side came on whilst valiant stood fast and faint-heart
fled: and they ceased not from fight and fray till ended the day, when
the drums beat the retreat and the two hosts drew apart and returned,
each to its tents.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when King Gharib
ended the battle and the two hosts drew apart and each had returned to
his own tents, he sat down on the throne of his realm and the place of
his reign, whilst his chief officers ranged themselves about him, and
he said, "I am sore concerned for the flight of the cur Ajib and I know
not whither he has gone. Except I overtake him and take my wreak of
him, I shall die of despite." Whereupon Sahim came forward and kissing
the earth before him, said, "O King, I will go to the army of the
Kafirs and find out what is come of the perfidious dog Ajib." Quoth
Gharib, "Go, and learn the truth anent the hog." So Sahim disguised
himself in the habit of the Infidels and became as he were of them;
then, making for the enemy's camp, he found them all asleep, drunken
with war and battle, and none were on wake save only the guards. He
passed on and presently came to the King's pavilion where he found King
Jaland asleep unattended; so he crept up and made him smell and sniff
up levigated Bhang and he became as one dead. Then Sahim went out and
took a male mule, and wrapping the King in the coverlet of his bed,
laid him on its back; after which he threw a mat over him and led the
beast to the Moslem camp. Now when he came to Gharib's pavilion and
would have entered, the guards knew him not and prevented him, saying,
"Who art thou?'' He laughed and uncovered his face, and they knew him
and admitted him. When Gharib saw him he said, "What bearest thou
there, O Sahim?"; and he replied, "O King, this is Jaland bin Karkar."
Then he uncovered him, and Gharib knew him and said, "Arouse him, O
Sahim." So he made him smell vinegar[FN#22] and frankincense; and he
cast the Bhang from his nostrils and, opening his eyes, found himself
among the Moslems; whereupon quoth he, "What is this foul dream?" and
closing his eyelids again, would have slept; but Sahim dealt him a
kick, saying, "Open thine eyes, O accursed!" So he opened them and
asked, "Where am I?"; and Sahim answered, "Thou art in the presence of
King Gharib bin Kundamir, King of Irak." When Jaland heard this, he
said, "O King, I am under thy protection! Know that I am not at fault,
but that who led us forth to fight thee was thy brother, and the same
cast enmity between us and then fled." Quoth Gharib, "Knowest thou
whither he is gone?"; and quoth Jaland, "No, by the light-giving sun, I
know not whither." Then Gharib bade lay him in bonds and set guards
over him, whilst each captain returned to his own tent, and Jamrkan
while wending said to his men, "O sons of my uncle, I purpose this
night to do a deed wherewith I may whiten my face with King Gharib."
Quoth they, "Do as thou wilt, we hearken to thy commandment and obey
it." Quoth he, "Arm yourselves and, muffling your steps while I go with
you, let us fare softly and disperse about the Infidels' camp, so that
the very ants shall not be ware of you; and, when you hear me cry
'Allaho Akbar,' do ye the like and cry out, saying, 'God is Most
Great!' and hold back and make for the city- gate; and we seek aid from
the Most High." So the folk armed themselves cap-à-pie and waited till
the noon of Night, when they dispersed about the enemy's camp and
tarried awhile when, lo and behold! Jamrkan smote shield with sword and
shouted, "Allaho Akbar'" Thereupon they all cried out the like, till
rang again valley and mountain, hills, sands and ruins. The Miscreants
awoke in dismay and fell one upon other, and the sword went round
amongst them; the Moslems drew back and made for the city-gates, where
they slew the warders and entering, made themselves masters of the town
with all that was therein of treasure and women. Thus it befel with
Jamrkan; but as regards King Gharib, hearing the noise and clamour of
"God is Most Great," he mounted with his troops to the last man and
sent on in advance Sahim who, when he came near the field of fight, saw
that Jamrkan had fallen upon the Kafirs with the Banu Amir by night and
made them drink the cup of death. So he returned and told all to his
brother, who called down blessings on Jamrkan. And the Infidels ceased
not to smite one another with the biting sword and expending their
strength till the day rose and lighted up the land, when Gharib cried
out to his men, "Charge, O ye noble, and do a deed to please the
All-knowing King!" So the True Believers fell upon the idolaters and
plied upon every false hypocritical breast the keen sword and the
quivering spear. They sought to take refuge in the city; but Jamrkan
came forth upon them with his kinsmen, who hemmed them in between two
mountain-ranges, and slew an innumerable host of them, and the rest
fled into the wastes and words.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Six Hundred and Fiftieth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Moslem host charged upon the Miscreants they hewed them in pieces with
the biting scymitar and the rest fled to the wastes and words; nor did
the Moslems cease pursuing them with the sword, till they had scattered
them abroad in the plains and stony places. Then they returned to Oman
city, and King Gharib entered the palace of the King and, sitting down
on the throne of his kingship, with his Grandees and Of ficers ranged
right and left, sent for Jaland. They brought him in haste and Gharib
expounded to him Al-Islam; but he rejected it; wherefore Gharib bade
crucify him on the gate of the city, and they shot at him with shafts
till he was like unto a porcupine. Then Gharib honourably robed Jamrkan
and said to him, "Thou shalt be lord of this city and ruler thereof
with power to loose and to bind therein, for it was thou didst open it
with thy sword and thy folk." And Jamrkan kissed the King's feet,
thanked him and wished him abiding victory and glory and every
blessing. Moreover Gharib opened Jaland's treasuries and saw what was
therein of coin, whereof he gave largesse to his captains and
standard-bearers and fighting-men, yea, even to the girls and children;
and thus he lavished his gifts ten days long. After this, one night he
dreamt a terrible dream and awoke, troubled and trembling. So he
aroused his brother Sahim and said to him, "I saw in my vision that we
were in a wide valley, when there pounced down on us two ravening birds
of prey, never in my life saw I greater than they; their legs were like
lances, and as they swooped we were in sore fear of them." Replied
Sahim, "O King, this be some great enemy; so stand on thy guard against
him." Gharib slept not the rest of the night and, when the day broke,
he called for his courser and mounted. Quoth Sahim, "Whither goest
thou, my brother?" and quoth Gharib, "I awoke heavy at heart; so I mean
to ride abroad ten days and broaden my breast." Said Sahim, "Take with
thee a thousand braves;" but Gharib replied, "I will not go forth but
with thee and only thee." So the two brothers mounted and, seeking the
dales and leasows, fared on from Wady to Wady and from meadow to
meadow, till they came to a valley abounding in streams and
sweet-smelling flowers and trees laden with all manner eatable fruits,
two of each kind. Birds warbled on the branches their various strains;
the mocking bird trilled out her sweet notes fain and the turtle filled
with her voice the plain. There sang the nightingale, whose chant
arouses the sleeper, and the merle with his note like the voice of man
and the cushat and the ring-dove, whilst the parrot with its eloquent
tongue answered the twain. The valley pleased them and they ate of its
fruits and drank of its waters, after which they sat under the shadow
of its trees till drowsiness overcame them and they slept, glory be to
Him who sleepeth not! As they lay asleep, lo! two fierce Marids swooped
down on them and, taking each one on his shoulders, towered with them
high in air, till they were above the clouds. So Gharib and Sahim awoke
and found themselves betwixt heaven and earth; whereupon they looked at
those who bore them and saw that they were two Marids, the head of the
one being as that of a dog and the head of the other as that of an
ape[FN#23] with hair like horses' tails and claws like lions' claws,
and both were big as great palm-trees. When they espied this case, they
exclaimed,, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah,
the Glorious, the Great!" Now the cause of this was that a certain King
of the Kings of the Jinn,  hight Mura'ash, had a son called Sá'ik, who
loved a damsel of the Jinn, named Najmah;[FN#24] and the twain used to
foregather in that Wady under the semblance of two birds. Gharib and
Sahim saw them thus and deeming them birds, shot at them with shafts
but wounding only Sa'ik whose blood flowed. Najmah mourned over him;
then, fearing lest the like calamity befal herself, snatched up her
lover and flew with him to his father's palace, where she cast him down
at the gate. The warders bore him in and laid him before his sire who,
seeing the pile sticking in his rib exclaimed, "Alas, my son! Who hath
done with thee this thing, that I may lay waste his abiding-place and
hurry on his destruction, though he were the greatest of the Kings of
the Jann?" Thereupon Sa'ik opened his eyes and said, "O my father, none
slew me save a mortal in the Valley of Springs." Hardly had he made an
end of these words, when his soul departed; whereupon his father
buffeted his face, till the blood streamed from his mouth, and cried
out to two Marids, saying, "Hie ye to the Valley of Springs and bring
me all who are therein." So they betook themselves to the Wady in
question, where they found Gharib and Sahim asleep, and, snatching them
up, carried them to King Mura'ash.[FN#25]—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the two
Marids, after snatching up Gharib and Sahim in their sleep, carried
them to Mura'ash, king of the Jann, whom they saw seated on the throne
of his kinship, as he were a huge mountain, with four heads on his
body,[FN#26] the first that of a lion, the second that of an elephant,
the third that of a panther, and the fourth that of a lynx. The Marids
set them down before Mura'ash and said to him, "O King, these twain be
they we found in the Valley of Springs." Thereupon he looked at them
with wrathful eyes and snarked and snorted and shot sparks from his
nostrils, so that all who stood by feared him. Then said he, "O dogs of
mankind, ye have slain my son and lighted fire in my liver." Quoth
Gharib, "Who is thy son, and who hath seen him?" Quoth Mura'ash, "Were
ye not in the Valley of Springs and did ye not see my son there, in the
guise of a bird, and did ye not shoot at him with wooden bolts that he
died?" Replied Gharib, "I know not who slew him; and, by the virtue of
the Great God, the One, the Immemorial who knoweth things all, and of
Abraham the Friend, we saw no bird, neither slew we bird or beast!" Now
when Mura'ash heard Gharib swear by Allah and His greatness and by
Abraham the Friend, he knew him for a Moslem (he himself being a
worshipper of Fire, not of the All-powerful Sire), so he cried out to
his folk, "Bring me my Goddess.[FN#27]" Accordingly they brought a
brazier of gold and, setting it before him, kindled therein fire and
cast on drugs, whereupon there arose therefrom green and blue and
yellow flames and the King and all who were present prostrated
themselves before the brazier, whilst Gharib and Sahim ceased not to
attest the Unity of Allah Almighty, to cry out "God is Most Great" and
to bear witness to His Omnipotence. Presently, Mura'ash raised his head
and, seeing the two Princes standing in lieu of falling down to
worship, said to them, "O dogs, why do ye not prostrate yourselves?"
Replied Gharib, "Out on you, O ye accursed! Prostration befitteth not
man save to the Worshipful King, who bringeth forth all creatures into
beingness from nothingness and maketh water to well from the barren
rockwell, Him who inclineth heart of sire unto new-born scion and who
may not be described as sitting or standing; the God of Noah and Salih
and Hud and Abraham the Friend, Who created Heaven and Hell and trees
and fruit as well,[FN#28] for He is Allah, the One, the All-powerful."
When Mura'ash heard this, his eyes sank into his head[FN#29] and he
cried out to his guards, saying, "Pinion me these two dogs and
sacrifice them to my Goddess." So they bound them and were about to
cast them into the fire when, behold, one of the crenelles of the
palace-parapet fell down upon the brazier and brake it and put out the
fire, which became ashes flying in air. Then quoth Gharib, "God is Most
Great! He giveth aid and victory and He forsaketh those who deny Him,
worshipping Fire and not the Almighty King!" Presently quoth Mura'ash,
"Thou art a sorcerer and hast bewitched my Goddess, so that this thing
hath befallen her." Gharib replied, "O madman, an the fire had soul or
sense it would have warded off from self all that hurteth it." When
Mura'ash heard these words, he roared and bellowed and reviled the
Fire, saying, "By my faith, I will not kill you save by the fire!" Then
he bade cast them into gaol; and, calling an hundred Marids, made them
bring much fuel and set fire thereto. So they brought great plenty of
wood and made a huge blaze, which flamed up mightily till the morning,
when Mura'ash mounted an elephant, bearing on its back a throne of gold
dubbed with jewels, and the tribes of the Jinn gathered about him in
their various kinds. Presently they brought in Gharib and Sahim who,
seeing the flaming of the fire, sought help of the One, the All-
conquering Creator of night and day, Him of All-might, whom no sight
comprehendeth, but who comprehendeth all sights, for He is the Subtle,
the All-knowing. And they ceased not humbly beseeching Him till,
behold, a cloud arose from West to East and, pouring down showers of
rain, like the swollen sea, quenched the fire. When the King saw this,
he was affrighted, he and his troops, and entered the palace, where he
turned to the Wazirs and Grandees and said to them, "How say ye of
these two men?" They replied, "O King, had they not been in the right,
this thing had not befallen the fire; wherefore we say that they be
true men which speak sooth." Rejoined Mura'ash, "Verily the Truth hath
been displayed to me, ay, and the manifest way, and I am certified that
the worship of the fire is false; for, were it goddess, it had warded
off from itself the rain which quenched it and the stone which broke
its brazier and beat it into ashes. Wherefore I believe in Him Who
created the fire and the light and the shade and the heat. And ye, what
say ye?" They answered, "O King, we also hear and follow and obey." So
the King called for Gharib and embraced him and kissed him between the
eyes and then summoned Sahim; whereupon the bystanders all crowded to
kiss their hands and heads.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Six Hundred and Fifth-second Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Mura'ash
and his men found salvation in the Saving Faith, Al- Islam, he called
for Gharib and Sahim and kissed them between the eyes and so did all
the Grandees who crowded to buss their hands and heads. Then Mura'ash
sat down on the throne of his kingship and, seating Gharib on his right
and Sahim on his left hand, said to them, "O mortals, what shall we
say, that we may become Moslems?" Replied Gharib, "Say, 'There is no
god but the God, and Abraham is the Friend of God!'" So the King and
his folk professed Al-Islam with heart and tongue, and Gharib abode
with them awhile, teaching them the ritual of prayer. But presently he
called to mind his people and sighed, whereupon quoth Mura'ash,
"Verily, trouble is gone and joy and gladness are come." Quoth Gharib,
"O King, I have many foes and I fear for my folk from them." Then he
related to him his history with his brother Ajib from first to last,
and the King of the Jinns said, "O King of men, I will send one who
shall bring thee news of thy people, for I will not let thee go till I
have had my fill of thy face." Then he called two doughty Marids, by
name Kaylaján and Kúraján, and after they had done him homage, he bade
them repair to Al-Yaman and bring him news of Gharib's army. They
replied, "To hear is to obey," and departed. Thus far concerning the
brothers; but as regards the Moslems, they arose in the morning and led
by their captains rode to King Gharib's palace, to do their service to
him; but the eunuchs told them that the King had mounted with his
brother and had ridden forth at peep o' day. So they made for the
valleys and mountains and followed the track of the Princes, till they
came to the Valley of Springs, where they found their arms cast down
and their two gallant steeds grazing and said, "The King is missing
from this place, by the glory of Abraham the Friend!" Then they mounted
and sought in the valley and the mountains three days, but found no
trace of them; whereupon they began the mourning ceremonies and,
sending for couriers, said to them, "Do ye disperse yourselves about
the cities and sconces and castles, and seek ye news of our King."
"Harkening and obedience!" cried the couriers, who dispersed hither and
thither each over one of the Seven Climes and sought everywhere for
Gharib, but found no trace of him. Now when the tidings came to Ajib by
his spies that his brother was lost and there was no news of the
missing, he rejoiced and going in to King Ya'arub bin Kahtan, sought of
him aid which he granted and gave him two hundred thousand Amalekites,
wherewith he set out for Al-Yaman and sat down before the city of Oman.
Jamrkan and Sa'adan sallied forth and offered him battle, and there
were slain of the Moslems much folk, so the True Believers retired into
the city and shut the gates and manned the walls. At this moment came
up the two Marids Kaylajan and Kurajan and, seeing the Moslem
beleaguered waited till nightfall, when they fell upon the miscreants
and plied them with sharp swords of the swords of the Jinn, each twelve
cubits long, if a man smote therewith a rock, verily he would cleave it
in sunder. They charged the Idolaters, shouting, "Allaho Akbar! God is
Most Great! He giveth aid and victory and forsaketh those who deny the
Faith of Abraham the Friend!" and whilst they raged amongst the foes,
fire issued from their mouths and nostrils, and they made great
slaughter amongst them. Thereupon the Infidels ran out of their tents
offering battle but, seeing these strange things, were confounded and
their hair stood on end and their reason fled. So they snatched up
their arms and fell one upon other, whilst the Marids shore off their
heads, as a reaper eareth grain, crying, "God is Most Great! We are the
lads of King Gharib, the friend of Mura'ash, King of the Jinn!" The
sword ceased not to go round amongst them till the night was half
spent, when the Misbelievers, imagining that the mountains were all
Ifrits, loaded their tents and treasure and baggage upon camels and
made off; and the first to fly was Ajib.- -And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the
Misbelievers made off and the first to fly was Ajib. Thereupon the
Moslems gathered together, marvelling at this that had betided the
Infidels and fearing the tribesmen of the Jinn. But the Marids ceased
not from pursuit, till they had driven them far away into the hills and
words; and but fifty thousand Rebels[FN#30] of two hundred thousand
escaped with their lives and made for their own land, wounded and sore
discomfited. Then the two Jinns returned and said to them, "O host of
the Moslems, your lord King Gharib and his brother Sahim salute you;
they are the guests of Mura'ash, King of the Jann, and will be with you
anon." When Gharib's men heard that he was safe and well, they joyed
with exceeding joy and said to the Marids, "Allah gladden you twain
with good news, O noble spirits!" So Kurajan and Kaylajan returned to
Mura'ash and Gharib; and acquainted them with that which had happened,
whereat Gharib finding the two sitting together felt heart at ease and
said, "Allah abundantly requite you!" Then quoth King Mura'ash, "O my
brother, I am minded to show thee our country and the city of
Japhet[FN#31] son of Noah (on whom be peace!)" Quoth Gharib, "O King,
do what seemeth good to thee." So he called for three noble steeds and
mounting, he and Gharib and Sahim, set out with a thousand Marids, as
they were a piece of a mountain cloven lengthwise. They fared on,
solacing themselves with the sight of valleys and mountains, till they
came to Jabarsá,[FN#32] the city of Japhet son of Noah (on whom be
peace!) where the townsfolk all, great and small, came forth to meet
King Mura'ash and brought them into the city in great state. Then
Mura'ash went up to the palace of Japhet son of Noah and sat down on
the throne of his kingship, which was of alabaster, ten stages high and
latticed with wands of gold wherefrom hung all manner coloured silks.
The people of the city stood before him and he said to them, "O seed of
Yafis bin Nuh, what did your fathers and grandfathers worship?" They
replied, "We found them worshipping Fire and followed their example, as
thou well knowest." "O folk," rejoined Mura'ash, "we have been shown
that the fire is but one of the creatures of Almighty Allah, Creator of
all things; and when we knew this, we submitted ourselves to God, the
One, the All-powerful, Maker of night and day and the sphere revolving
alway, Whom comprehendeth no sight, but Who comprehendeth all sights,
for He is the Subtle, the All-wise. So seek ye Salvation and ye shall
be saved from the wrath of the Almighty One and from the fiery doom in
the world to come." And they embraced Al-Islam with heart and tongue.
Then Mura'ash took Gharib by the hand and showed him the palace and its
ordinance and all the marvels it contained, till they came to the
armoury, wherein were the arms of Japhet son of Noah. Here Gharib saw a
sword hanging to a pin of gold and asked, "O King, whose is that?"
Mura'ash answered, " 'Tis the sword of Yafis bin Nuh, wherewith he was
wont to do battle against men and Jinn. The sage Jardúm forged it and
graved on its back names of might.[FN#33] It is named Al-Máhí­k the
Annihilator for that it never descendeth upon a man, but it
annihilateth him, nor upon a Jinni, but it crusheth him; and if one
smote therewith a mountain 'twould overthrow it." When Gharib heard
tell of the virtues of the sword, he said, "I desire to look on this
blade;" and Mura'ash said, "Do as thou wilt." So Gharib put out his
hand, and, hending the sword, drew it from its sheath; whereupon it
flashed and Death crept on its edge and glittered; and it was twelve
spans long and three broad. Now Gharib wished to become owner of it,
and King Mura'ash said, "An thou canst smite with it, take it." "'Tis
well," Gharib replied, and took it up, and it was in his hand as a
staff; wherefore all who were present, men and Jinn, marvelled and
said, "Well done, O Prince of Knights!" Then said Mura'ash "Lay thy
hand on this hoard for which the Kings of the earth sigh in vain, and
mount, that I may show thee the city." Then they took horse and rode
forth the palace, with men and Jinns attending them on foot,—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Gharib
and King Mura'ash rode forth the palace of Japhet, with men and Jinns
attending them on foot, they passed through the streets and
thoroughfares of the town, by palaces and deserted mansions and gilded
doorways, till they issued from the gates and entered gardens full of
trees fruit-bearing and waters welling and birds speaking and
celebrating the praises of Him to whom belong Majesty and Eternity; nor
did they cease to solace themselves in the land till nightfall, when
they returned to the palace of Japhet son of Noah and they brought them
the table of food. So they ate and Gharib turned to the King of the
Jann and said to him, "O King, I would fain return to my folk and my
force; for I know not their plight after me." Replied Mura'ash, "By
Allah, O my brother, I will not part with thee for a full month, till I
have had my fill of thy sight." Now Gharib could not say nay, so he
abode with him in the city of Japhet, eating and drinking and making
merry, till the month ended, when Mura'ash gave him great store of gems
and precious ores, emeralds and balass- rubies, diamonds and other
jewels, ingots of gold and silver and likewise ambergis and musk and
brocaded silks and else of rarities and things of price. Moreover he
clad him and Sahim in silken robes of honour gold inwoven and set on
Gharib's head a crown jewelled with pearls and diamonds of inestimable
value. All these treasures he made up into even loads for him and,
calling five hundred Marids, said to them, "Get ye ready to travel on
the morrow, that we may bring King Gharib and Sahim back to their own
country." And they answered, "We hear and we obey." So they passed the
night in the city, purposing to depart on the morrow, but, next
morning, as they were about to set forth behold, they espied a great
host advancing upon the city, with horses neighing and kettle-drums
beating and trumpets braying and riders filling the earth for they
numbered threescore and ten thousand Marids, flying and diving, under a
King called Barkán. Now this Barkan was lord of the City of Carnelian
and the Castle of Gold and under his rule were five hill-strongholds,
in each five hundred thousand Marids; and he and his tribe worshipped
the Fire, not the Omnipotent Sire. He was a cousin of Mura'ash, the son
of his father's brother, and the cause of his coming was that there had
been among the subjects of King Mura'ash a misbelieving Marid, who
professed Al-Islam hypocritically, and he stole away from his people
and made for the Valley of Carnelian, where he went in to King Barkan
and, kissing the earth before him, wished him abiding glory and
prosperity. Then he told him of Mura'ash being converted to Al-Islam,
and Barkan said, "How came he to tear himself away from his
faith[FN#34]?'' So the rebel told him what had passed and, when Barkan
heard it, he snorted and snarked and railed at Sun and Moon and
sparkling Fire, saying, "By the virtue of my faith, I will surely slay
mine uncle's son and his people and this mortal, nor will I leave one
of them alive!" Then he cried out to the legions of the Jinn and
choosing of them seventy thousand Marids, set out and fared on till he
came to Jabarsá[FN#35] the city of Japhet and encamped before its
gates. When Mura'ash saw this, he despatched a Marid, saying, "Go to
this host and learn all that it wanteth and return hither in haste." So
the messenger rushed away to Barkan's camp, where the Marids flocked to
meet him and said to him, "Who art thou?" Replied he, "An envoy from
King Mura'ash;" whereupon they carried him in to Barkan, before whom he
prostrated himself, saying, "O my lord, my master hath sent me to thee,
to learn tidings of thee." Quoth Barkan, "Return to thy lord and say to
him, 'This is thy cousin Barkan, who is come to salute thee.'"— And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Marid-envoy of Mura'ash was borne before Barkan and said to him, "O my
lord, my master hath sent me to thee to learn tidings of thee," Barkan
replied, "Return to thy lord and say to him, 'This is thy cousin Barkan
who is come to salute thee!'" So the messenger went back and told
Mura'ash, who said to Gharib, "Sit thou on thy throne whilst I go and
salute my cousin and return to thee." Then he mounted and rode to the
camp of his uncle's son. Now this was a trick[FN#36] of Barkan, to
bring Mura'ash out and seize upon him, and he said to his Marids, whom
he had stationed about him, "When ye see me embrace him,[FN#37] lay
hold of him and pinion him." And they replied, "To hear is to obey."
So, when King Mura'ash came up and entered Barkan's pavilion, the owner
rose to him and threw his arms round his neck; whereat the Jann fell
upon Mura'ash and pinioned him and chained him. Mura'ash looked at
Barkan and said, "What manner of thing is this?" Quoth Barkan, "O dog
of the Jann, wilt thou leave the faith of thy fathers and grandfathers
and enter a faith thou knowest not?" Rejoined Mura'ash, "O son of my
uncle, indeed I have found the faith of Abraham the Friend to be the
True Faith and all other than it vain." Asked Barkan, "And who told
thee of this?"; and Mura'ash answered, "Gharib, King of Irak, whom I
hold in the highest honour." "By the right of the Fire and the Light
and the Shade and the Heat," cried Barkan, "I will assuredly slay both
thee and him!" And he cast him into gaol. Now when Mura'ash's henchman
saw what had befallen his lord, he fled back to the city and told the
King's legionaries who cried out and mounted. Quoth Gharib, "What is
the matter?" And they told him all that had passed, whereupon he cried
out to Sahim, "Saddle me one of the chargers that King Mura'ash gave
me." Said Sahim, "O my brother, wilt thou do battle with the Jinn?"
Gharib replied, "Yes, I will fight them with the sword of Japhet son of
Noah, seeking help of the Lord of Abraham the Friend (on whom be the
Peace!); for He is the Lord of all things and sole Creator!" So Sahim
saddled him a sorrel horse of the horses of the Jinn, as he were a
castle strong among castles, and he armed and mounting, rode out with
the legions of the Jinn, hauberk'd cap-à-pie. Then Barkan and his host
mounted also and the two hosts drew out in lines facing each other. The
first to open the gate of war was Gharib, who drave his steed into the
mid-field and bared the enchanted blade, whence issued a glittering
light that dazzled the eyes of all the Jinn and struck terror to their
hearts. Then he played[FN#38] with the sword till their wits were
wildered, and cried out, saying, "Allaho Akbar! I am Gharib, King of
Irak. There is no Faith save the Faith of Abraham the Friend!" Now when
Barkan heard Gharib's words, he said, "This is he who seduced my cousin
from his religion; so, by the virtue of my faith, I will not sit down
on my throne till I have decapitated this Gharib and suppressed his
breath of life and forced my cousin and his people back to their
belief: and whoso baulketh me, him will I destroy." Then he mounted an
elephant paper-white as he were a tower plastered with gypsum, and
goaded him with a spike of steel which ran deep into his flesh,
whereupon the elephant trumpeted and made for the battle-plain where
cut and thrust obtain; and, when he drew near Gharib, he cried out to
him, saying, "O dog of mankind, what made thee come into our land, to
debauch my cousin and his folk and pervert them from one faith to other
faith. Know that this day is the last of thy worldly days." Gharib
replied, ''Avaunt,[FN#39] O vilest of the Jann!" Therewith Barkan drew
a javelin and making it quiver[FN#40] in his hand, cast it at Gharib;
but it missed him. So he hurled a second javelin at him; but Gharib
caught it in mid-air and after poising it launched it at the elephant.
It smote him on the flank and came out on the other side, whereupon the
beast fell to the earth dead and Barkan was thrown to the ground, like
a great palm-tree. Before he could stir, Gharib smote him with the flat
of Japhet's blade on the nape of the neck, and he fell upon the earth
in a fainting-fit; whereupon the Marids swooped down on him and
surrounding him pinioned his elbows. When Barkan's people saw their
king a prisoner, they drove at the others, seeking to rescue him, but
Gharib and the Islamised Jinn fell upon them and gloriously done for
Gharib! indeed that day he pleased the Lord who answereth prayer and
slaked his vengeance with the talisman-sword! Whomsoever he smote, he
clove him in sunder and before his soul could depart he became a heap
of ashes in the fire; whilst the two hosts of the Jinn shot each other
with flamy meteors till the battle-field was wrapped in smoke. And
Gharib tourneyed right and left among the Kafirs who gave way before
him, till he came to King Barkan's pavilion, with Kaylajan and Kurajan
on his either hand, and cried out to them, "Loose your lord!" So they
unbound Mura'ash and broke his fetters and——And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when King
Gharib cried out to Kaylajan and Kurajan, saying, "Loose your lord!",
they unbound Mura'ash and broke his fetters, and he said to them,
"Bring me my arms and my winged horse." Now he had two flying steeds,
one of which he had given to Gharib and the other he had kept for
himself; and this he mounted after he had donned his battle-harness.
Then he and Gharib fell upon the enemy, flying through the air on their
winged horses, and the true believing Jinn followed them, shouting
"Allaho Akbar—God is Most Great!"—till plains and hills, valleys and
mountains re-worded the cry. The Infidels fled before them and they
returned, after having slain more than thirty thousand Marids and
Satans, to the city of Japhet, where the two Kings sat down on their
couches of estate and sought Barkan, but found him not; for after
capturing him they were diverted from him by stress of battle, where an
Ifrit of his servants made his way to him and loosing him, carried him
to his folk, of whom he found part slain and the rest in full flight.
So he flew up with the King high in air and sat him down in the City of
Carnelian and Castle of Gold, where Barkan seated himself on the throne
of his kingship. Presently, those of his people who had survived the
affair came in to him and gave him joy of his safety; and he said, "O
folk, where is safety? My army is slain and they took me prisoner and
have rent in pieces mine honour among the tribes of the Jann." Quoth
they, "O King, 'tis ever thus that kings still afflict and are
afflicted." Quoth he, "There is no help but I take my wreak and wipe
out my shame, else shall I be for ever disgraced among the tribes of
the Jann." Then he wrote letters to the Governors of his fortresses,
who came to him right loyally and, when he reviewed them, he found
three hundred and twenty thousand fierce Marids and Satans, who said to
him, "What is thy need?" And he replied, "Get ye ready to set out in
three days' time;" whereto they rejoined "Harkening and obedience!" On
this wise it befel King Barkan; but as regards Mura'ash, when he
discovered his prisoner's escape, it was grievous to him and he said,
"Had we set an hundred Marids to guard him, he had not fled; but
whither shall he go from us?" Then said he to Gharib, "Know, O my
brother, that Barkan is perfidious and will never rest from wreaking
blood-revenge on us, but will assuredly assemble his legions and return
to attack us; wherefore I am minded to forestall him and follow the
trail of his defeat, whilst he is yet weakened thereby." Replied
Gharib, "This is the right rede, and will best serve our need;" and
Mura'ash, said, "Oh my brother, let the Marids bear thee back to thine
own country and leave me to fight the battles of the Faith against the
Infidels, that I may be lightened of my sin-load." But Gharib rejoined
"By the virtue of the Clement, the Bountiful, the Veiler, I will not go
hence till I do to death all the misbelieving Jinn; and Allah hasten
their souls to the fire and dwelling-place dire; and none shall be
saved but those who worship Allah the One, the Victorious! But do thou
send Sahim back to the city of Oman, so haply he may be healed of his
ailment." For Sahim was sick. So Mura'ash cried to the Marids, saying,
"Take ye up Sahim and these treasures and bear them to Oman city." And
after replying, "We hear and we obey," they took them and made for the
land of men. Then Mura'ash wrote letters to all his Governors and
Captains of fortresses and they came to him with an hundred and sixty
thousand warriors. So they made them ready and departed for the City of
Carnelian and the Castle of Gold, covering in one day a year's journey
and halted in a valley, where they encamped and passed the night. Next
morning as they were about to set forth, behold, the vanguard of
Barkan's army appeared, whereupon the Jinn cried out and the two hosts
met and fell each upon other in that valley. Then the engagement was
dight and there befel a sore fight as though an earthquake shook the
site and fair plight waxed foul plight. Earnest came and jest took
flight, and parley ceased 'twixt wight and wight,[FN#41] whilst long
lives were cut short in a trice and the Unbelievers fell into disgrace
and despite; for Gharib charged them, proclaiming the Unity of the
Worshipful, the All- might and shore through necks and left heads
rolling in the dust; nor did night betide before nigh seventy thousand
of the Miscreants were slain, and of the Moslemised over ten thousand
Marids had fallen Then the kettle-drums beat the retreat, and the two
hosts drew apart,—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the two
hosts drew apart, Gharib and Mura'ash returned to their tents, after
wiping their weapons, and supper being set before them, they ate and
gave each other joy of their safety, and the loss of their Marids being
so small. As for Barkan, he returned to his tent, grieving for the
slaughter of his champions, and said to his officers, "O folk, an we
tarry here and do battle with them on this wise in three days' time we
shall be cut off to the last wight." Quoth they, "And how shall we do,
O King?" Quoth Barkan, "We will fall upon them under cover of night
whilst they are deep in sleep, and not one of them shall be left to
tell the tale. So take your arms and when I give the word of command,
attack and fall on your enemies as one." Now there was amongst them a
Marid named Jandal whose heart inclined to Al-Islam; so, when he heard
the Kafirs' plot, he stole away from them and going in to King Mura'ash
and King Gharib, told the twain what Barkan had devised; whereupon
Mura'ash turned to Gharib and said to him, "O my brother, what shall we
do?" Gharib replied, "To-night we will fall upon the Miscreants and
chase them into the wilds and the wolds if it be the will of the
Omnipotent King." Then he summoned the Captains of the Jann and said to
them, "Arm yourselves, you and yours; and, as soon as 'tis dark, steal
out of your tents on foot, hundreds after hundreds, and lie in ambush
among the mountains; and when ye see the enemy engaged among the tents,
do ye fall upon them from all quarters. Hearten your hearts and rely on
your Lord, and ye shall certainly conquer; and behold, I am with you!"
So, as soon as it was dark Night, the Infidels attacked the camp,
invoking aid of the fire and light; but when they came among the tents,
the Moslems fell upon them, calling for help on the Lord of the Worlds
and saying, "O Most Merciful of Mercifuls, O Creator of all createds!"
till they left them like mown grass, cut down and dead. Nor did morning
dawn before the most part of the unbelievers were species without souls
and the rest made for the wastes and marshes, whilst Gharib and
Mura'ash returned triumphant and victorious; and, making prize of the
enemy's baggage, they rested till the morrow, when they set out for the
City of Carnelian and Castle of Gold. As for Barkan, when the battle
had turned against him and most of his lieges were slain, he fled
through the dark with the remnant of his power to his capital where he
entered his palace and assembling his legionaries said to them, "O
folk, whoso hath aught of price, let him take it and follow me to the
Mountain Káf, to the Blue King, lord of the Pied Palace; for he it is
who shall avenge us." So they took their women and children and goods
and made for the Caucasus-mountain. Presently Mura'ash and Gharib
arrived at the City of Carnelian and Castle of Gold to find the gates
open and none left to give them news; whereupon they entered and
Mura'ash led Gharib that he might show him the city, whose walls were
builded of emeralds and its gates of red carnelian, with studs of
silver, and the terrace-roofs of its houses and mansions reposed upon
beams of lign aloes and sandal-wood. So they took their pleasure in its
streets and alleys, till they came to the Palace of Gold and entering
passed through seven vestibules, when they drew near to a building,
whose walls were of royal balass-rubies and its pavement of emerald and
jacinth. The two Kings were astounded at the goodliness of the place
and fared on from vestibule to vestibule, till they had passed through
the seventh and happened upon the inner court of the palace wherein
they saw four daïses, each different from the others, and in the midst
a jetting fount of red gold, compassed about with golden lions,[FN#42]
from whose mouths issued water. These were things to daze man's wit.
The estrade at the upper end was hung and carpeted with brocaded silks
of various colours and thereon stood two thrones of red gold, inlaid
with pearls and jewels. So Mura'ash and Gharib sat down on Barkan's
thrones and held high state in the Palace of Gold.— And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Mura'ash and
Gharib took seat on Barkan's thrones and held high state. Then said
Gharib to Mura'ash, "What thinkest thou to do?" And Mura'ash replied,
"O King of mankind, I have despatched an hundred horse to learn where
Barkan is, that we may pursue him." Then they abode three days in the
palace, the scouting Marids returned with the news that Barkan had fled
to the Mountain Kaf and craved protection of the Blue King who granted
it; whereupon quoth Mura'ash to Gharib, "What sayest thou, O my
brother?" and quoth Gharib, "Except we attack them they will attack
us." So they bade the host make ready for departure and after three
days, they were about to set out with their troops, when the Marids,
who had carried Sahim and the presents back to Oman, returned and
kissed ground before Gharib. He questioned them of his people and they
replied, "After the last affair, thy brother Ajib, leaving Ya'arub bin
Kahtan, fled to the King of Hind and, submitting his case, sought his
protection. The King granted his prayer and writing letters to all his
governors, levied an army as it were the surging sea, having neither
beginning nor end, wherewith he purposeth to invade Al-Irak and lay it
waste." When Gharib heard this, he said, "Perish the Misbelievers!
Verily, Allah Almighty shall give the victory to Al-Islam and I will
soon show them hew and foin." Said Mura'ash, "O King of humans, by the
virtue of the Mighty Name, I must needs go with thee to thy kingdom and
destroy thy foes and bring thee to thy wish." Gharib thanked him and
they rested on this resolve till the morrow, when they set out,
intending for Mount Caucasus and marched many days till they reached
the City of Alabaster and the Pied Palace. Now this city was fashioned
of alabaster and precious stones by Bárik bin Fáki', father of the
Jinn, and he also founded the Pied Palace, which was so named because
edified with one brick of gold alternating with one of silver, nor was
there builded aught like it in all the world. When they came within
half a day's journey of the city, they halted to take their rest, and
Mura'ash sent out to reconnoitre a scout who returned and said, "O
King, within the City of Alabaster are legions of the Jinn, for number
as the leaves of the trees or as the drops of rain." So Mura'ash said
to Gharib, "How shall we do, O King of Mankind?" He replied, "O King,
divide your men into four bodies and encompass with them the camp of
the Infidels; then, in the middle of the Night, let them cry out,
saying, 'God is Most Great!' and withdraw and watch what happeneth
among the tribes of the Jinn." So Mura'ash did as Gharib counselled and
the troops waited till midnight, when they encircled the foe and
shouted "Allaho Akbar! Ho for the Faith of Abraham the Friend, on whom
be the Peace!" The Misbelievers at this cry awoke in affright and
snatching up their arms, fell one upon other till the morning, when
most part of them were dead bodies and but few remained. Then Gharib
cried out to the True Believers, saying, "Up and at the remnant of the
Kafirs! Behold I am with you, and Allah is your helper!" So the Moslems
drave at the enemy and Gharib bared his magical blade Al-Mahik and fell
upon the foe, lopping off noses and making heads wax hoary and whole
ranks turn tail. At last be came up with Barkan and smote him and
bereft him of life and he fell down, drenched in his blood. On like
wise he did with the Blue King, and by undurn-hour not one of the
Kafirs was left alive to tell the tale. Then Gharib and Mura'ash
entered the Pied Palace and found its walls builded of alternate
courses of gold and silver, with door-sills of crystal and keystones of
greenest emerald. In its midst was a fountain adorned with bells and
pendants and figures of birds and beasts spouting forth water, and
thereby a daïs[FN#43] furnished with gold-brocaded silk, bordered or
embroidered with jewels: and they found the treasures of the palace
past count or description. Then they entered the women's court, where
they came upon a magnificent serraglio and Gharib saw, among the Blue
King's woman- folk a girl clad in a dress worth a thousand dinars,
never had he beheld a goodlier. About her were an hundred slave-girls,
upholding her train with golden hooks, and she was in their midst as
the moon among stars. When he saw her, his reason was confounded and he
said to one of the waiting-women, "Who may be yonder maid?" Quoth they,
"This is the Blue King's daughter, Star o' Morn."—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Gharib asked
the slave women saying, "Who may be yonder maid," they replied, "This
is Star o' Morn, daughter to the Blue King." Then Gharib turned to
Mura'ash and said to him, "O King of the Jinn, I have a mind to take
yonder damsel to wife." Replied Mura'ash, "The palace and all that
therein is, live stock and dead, are the prize of thy right hand; for,
hadst thou not devised a stratagem to destroy the Blue King and Barkan,
they had cut us off to the last one: wherefore the treasure is thy
treasure and the folk thy thralls." Gharib thanked him for his fair
speech and going up to the girl, gazed steadfastly upon her and loved
her with exceeding love, forgetting Fakhr Taj the Princess and even
Mahdiyah. Now her mother was the Chinese King's daughter whom the Blue
King had carried off from her palace and perforce deflowered, and she
conceived by him and bare this girl, whom he named Star o' Morn, by
reason of her beauty and loveliness; for she was the very Princess of
the Fair. Her mother died when she was a babe of forty days, and the
nurses and eunuchs reared her, till she reached the age of seventeen;
but she hated her sire and rejoiced in his slaughter. So Gharib put his
palm to hers[FN#44] and went in unto her that night and found her a
virgin. Then he bade pull down the Pied Palace and divided the spoil
with the true- believing Jinn, and there fell to his share
one-and-twenty thousand bricks of gold and silver and money and
treasure beyond speech and count. Then Mura'ash took Gharib and showed
him the Mountain Kaf and all its marvels; after which they returned to
Barkan's fortress and dismantled it and shared the spoil thereof. Then
they repaired to Mura'ash's capital, where they tarried five days, when
Gharib sought to revisit his native country and Mura'ash said, "O King
of mankind, I will ride at thy stirrup and bring thee to thine own
land." Replied Gharib, "No, by the virtue of Abraham the Friend, I will
not suffer thee to weary thyself thus, nor will I take any of the Jinn
save Kaylajan and Kurajan." Quoth the King, "Take with thee ten
thousand horsemen of the Jinn, to serve thee;" but quoth Gharib, "I
will take only as I said to thee." So Mura'ash bade a thousand Marids
carry him to his native land, with his share of the spoil; and he
commanded Kaylajan and Kurajan to follow him and obey him; and they
answered, "Hearkening and obedience." Then said Gharib to the Marids,
"Do ye carry the treasure and Star o' Morn;" for he himself thought to
ride his flying steed. But Mura'ash said to him, "This horse, O my
brother, will live only in our region, and, if it come upon man's
earth, 'twill die: but I have in my stables a sea-horse, whose fellow
is not found in Al-Irak, no, nor in all the world is its like." So he
caused bring forth the horse, and when Gharib saw it, it interposed
between him and his wits.[FN#45] Then they bound it and Kaylajan bore
it on his shoulders and Kurajan took what he could carry. And Mura'ash
embraced Gharib and wept for parting from him, saying, "O my brother,
if aught befal thee wherein thou art powerless, send for me and I will
come to thine aid with an army able to lay waste the whole earth and
what is thereon." Gharib thanked him for his kindness and zeal for the
True Faith and took leave of him; whereupon the Marids set out with
Gharib and his goods; and, after traversing fifty years' journey in two
days and a Night, alighted near the city of Oman and halted to take
rest. Then Gharib sent out Kaylajan, to learn news of his people, and
he returned and said, "O King, the city is beleaguered by a host of
Infidels, as they were the surging sea, and thy people are fighting
them. The drums beat to battle and Jamrkan goeth forth as champion in
the field." When Gharib heard this, he cried aloud, "God is Most
Great!" and said to Kaylajan, "Saddle me the steed and bring me my arms
and spear; for to-day the valiant shall be known from the coward in the
place of war and battle-stead." So Kaylajan brought him all he sought
and Gharib armed and belting in baldrick Al-Mahik, mounted the sea
horse and made toward the hosts. Quoth Kaylajan and Kurajan to him, Set
thy heart at rest and let us go to the Kafirs and scatter them abroad
in the wastes and wilds till, by the help of Allah, the All-powerful,
we leave not a soul alive, no, not a blower of the fire." But Gharib
said "By the virtue of Abraham the Friend, I will not let you fight
them without me and behold, I mount!" Now the cause of the coming of
that great host was right marvellous.[FN#46]—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Six Hundred and Sixtieth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Gharib
had bidden Kaylajan go and learn news of his people, the Jinn fared
forth and presently returning said, "Verily around thy city is a mighty
host!" Now the cause of its coming was that Ajib, having fled the field
after Ya'arub's army had been put to the rout, said to his people, "O
folk, if we return to Ya'arub bin Kahtan, he will say to us, 'But for
you, my son and my people had not been slain; and he will put us to
death, even to the last man.' Wherefore, methinks we were better go to
Tarkanán, King of Hind, and beseech him to avenge us." Replied they,
"Come, let us go thither; and the blessing of the Fire be upon thee!"
So they fared days and nights till they reached King Tarkanan's capital
city and, after asking and obtaining permission to present himself,
Ajib went in to him and kissed ground before him. Then he wished him
what men use to wish to monarchy and said to him, "O King, protect me,
so may protect thee the sparkling Fire and the Night with its thick
darkness!" Tarkanan looked at Ajib and asked, "Who art thou and what
dost thou want?"; to which the other answered, "I am Ajib King of
Al-Irak; my brother hath wronged me and gotten the mastery of the land
and the subjects have submitted themselves to him. Moreover, he hath
embraced the faith of Al-Islam and he ceaseth not to chase me from
country to country; and behold, I am come to seek protection of thee
and thy power." When Tarkanan heard Ajib's words, he rose and sat down
and cried, "By the virtue of the Fire, I will assuredly avenge thee and
will let none serve other than my goddess the Fire!" And he called
aloud to his son, saying, "O my son, make ready to go to Al-Irak and
lay it waste and bind all who serve aught but the Fire and torment them
and make example of them; yet slay them not, but bring them to me, that
I may ply them with various tortures and make them taste the bitterness
of humiliation and leave them a warning to whoso will be warned in this
our while." Then he chose out to accompany him eighty thousand fighting
men on horseback and the like number on giraffes,[FN#47] besides ten
thousand elephants, bearing on their backs seats[FN#48] of sandal-wood,
latticed with golden rods, plated and studded with gold and silver and
shielded with pavoises of gold and emerald; moreover he sent good store
of war-chariots, in each eight men fighting with all kinds of weapons.
Now the Prince's name was Ra'ad Sháh,[FN#49] and he was the champion of
his time, for prowess having no peer. So he and his army equipped them
in ten days' time, then set out, as they were a bank of clouds, and
fared on two months' journey, till they came upon Oman city and
encompassed it, to the joy of Ajib, who thought himself assured of
victory. Jamrkan and Sa'adan and all their fighting-men sallied forth
into the field of fight whilst the kettle-drums beat to battle and the
horses neighed. At this moment up came King Gharib, who, as we have
said, had been warned by Kaylajan; and he urged on his destrier and
entered among the Infidels waiting to see who should come forth and
open the chapter of war. Then out rushed Sa'adan the Ghul and offered
combat, whereupon there issued forth to him one of the champions of
Hind; but Sa'adan scarce let him take stand in front ere he smote him
with his mace and crushed his bones and stretched him on the ground;
and so did he with a second and a third, till he had slain thirty
fighting-men. Then there dashed out at him an Indian cavalier, by name
Battásh al- Akrán,[FN#50] uncle to King Tarkanan and of his day the
doughtiest man, reckoned worth five thousand horse in battle-plain and
cried out to Sa'adan, saying, "O thief of the Arabs, hath thy daring
reached that degree that thou shouldst slay the Kings of Hind and their
champions and capture their horsemen? But this day is the last of thy
worldly days." When Sa'adan heard these words, his eyes waxed blood-red
and he drave at Battash and aimed a stroke at him with his club; but he
evaded it and the force of the blow bore Sa'adan to the ground; and
before he could recover himself, the Indians pinioned him and haled him
off to their tents. Now when Jamrkan saw his comrade a prisoner, he
cried out, saying, "Ho for the Faith of Abraham the Friend!" and
clapping heel to his horse, ran at Battash. They wheeled about awhile,
till Battash charged Jamrkan and catching him by his jerkin[FN#51] tare
him from his saddle and cast him to the ground; whereupon the Indians
bound him and dragged him away to their tents. And Battash ceased not
to overcome all who came out to him, Captain after Captain till he had
made prisoners of four-and-twenty Chiefs of the Moslems, whereat the
True Believers were sore dismayed. When Gharib saw what had befallen
his braves, he drew from beneath his knee[FN#52] a mace of gold
weighing six-score pounds which had belonged to Barkan King of the
Jann—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Gharib
beheld what had befallen his braves he drew forth a golden mace which
had belonged to Barkan King of the Jann and clapped heel to his
sea-horse, which bore him like the wind-gust into mid-field. Then he
let drive at Battash, crying out, "God is Most Great! He giveth aid and
victory and He abaseth whoso reject the Faith of Abraham the Friend!"
and smote him with the mace, whereupon he fell to the ground and
Gharib, turning to the Moslems, saw his brother Sahim and said to him,
"Pinion me this hound." When Sahim heard his brother's words, he ran to
Battash and bound him hard and fast and bore him off, whilst the Moslem
braves wondered who this knight could be and the Indians said one to
other, "Who is this horseman which came out from among them and hath
taken our Chief prisoner?" Meanwhile Gharib continued to offer battle
and there issued forth to him a captain of the Hindís whom he felled to
earth with his mace, and Kaylajan and Kurajan pinioned him and
delivered him over to Sahim; nor did Gharib leave to do thus, till he
had taken prisoner two-and-fifty of the doughtiest Captains of the army
of Hind. Then the day came to an end and the kettle-drums beat the
retreat; whereupon Gharib left the field and rode towards the Moslem
camp. The first to meet him was Sahim, who kissed his feet in the
stirrups and said, "May thy hand never wither, O champion of the age!
Tell us who thou art among the braves." So Gharib raised his vizor of
mail and Sahim knew him and cried out, saying, "This is your King and
your lord Gharib, who is come back from the land of the Jann!" When the
Moslems heard Gharib's name, they threw themselves off their horses'
backs, and, crowding about him, kissed his feet in the stirrups and
saluted him, rejoicing in his safe return. Then they carried him into
the city of Oman, where he entered his palace and sat down on the
throne of his kingship, whilst his officers stood around him in the
utmost joy. Food was set on and they ate, after which Gharib related to
them all that had betided him with the Jinn in Mount Kaf, and they
marvelled thereat with exceeding marvel and praised Allah for his
safety. Then he dismissed them to their sleeping places; so they
withdrew to their several lodgings, and when none abode with him but
Kaylajan and Kurajan, who never left him, he said to them, "Can ye
carry me to Cufa that I may take my pleasure in my Harim, and bring me
back before the end of the night?" They replied, "O our lord, this thou
askest is easy." Now the distance between Cufa and Oman is sixty days'
journey for a diligent horseman, and Kaylajan said to Kurajan, "I will
carry him going and thou coming back." So he took up Gharib and flew
off with him, in company with Kurajan; nor was an hour past before they
set him down at the gate of his palace, in Cufa. He went in to his
uncle Al- Damigh, who rose to him and saluted him; after which quoth
Gharib, "How is it with my wives Fakhr Taj[FN#53] and Mahdiyah?"
Al-Damigh answered, "They are both well and in good case." Then the
eunuch went in and acquainted the women of the Harim with Gharib's
coming, whereat they rejoiced and raised the trill of joy and gave him
the reward for good news. Presently in came King Gharib, and they rose
and saluting him, conversed with him, till Al- Damigh entered, when
Gharib related to them all that had befallen him in the land of the
Jinn, whereat they all marvelled. Then he lay with Fakhr Taj till near
daybreak, when he took leave of his wives and his uncle and mounted
Kurajan's back, nor was the darkness dispelled before the two Marids
set him down in the city of Oman. Then he and his men armed and he bade
open the gates when, behold, up came a horseman from the host of the
Indians, with Jamrkan and Sa'adan and the rest of the captive captains
whom he had delivered, and committed them to Gharib. The Moslems,
rejoicing in their safety, donned their mails and took horse, while the
kettle-drums beat a point of war; and the Miscreants also drew up in
line.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Moslem host mounted and rode to the plain of cut and thrust, the first
to open the door of war was King Gharib who, drawing his sword
Al-Mahik, drove his charger between the two ranks and cried out,
saying, "Whoso knoweth me hath enough of my mischief and whoso
unknoweth me, to him I will make myself known. I am Gharib, King of
Al-Irak and Al-Yaman, brother of Ajib." When Ra'ad Shah, son of the
King of Hind, heard this, he shouted to his captains, "Bring me Ajib."
So they brought him and Ra'ad Shah said to him, "Thou wottest that this
quarrel is thy quarrel and thou art the cause of all this slaughter.
Now yonder standeth thy brother Gharib amiddle-most the fightfield and
stead where sword and spear we shall wield; go thou to him and bring
him to me a prisoner, that I may set him on a camel arsy-versy, and
make a show of him and carry him to the land of Hind." Answered Ajib,
"O King, send out to him other than I, for I am in ill-health this
morning." But Ra'ad Shah snarked and snorted and cried, "By the virtue
of the sparkling Fire and the light and the shade and the heat, unless
thou fare forth to thy brother and bring him to me in haste, I will cut
off thy head and make an end of thee." So Ajib took heart and urging
his horse up to his brother in mid-field, said to him, "O dog of the
Arabs and vilest of all who hammer down tent pegs, wilt thou contend
with Kings? Take what to thee cometh and receive the glad tidings of
thy death." When Gharib heard this, he said to him, "Who art thou among
the Kings? And Ajib answered, saying, "I am thy brother, and this day
is the last of thy worldly days." Now when Gharib was assured that he
was indeed his brother Ajib, he cried out and said, "Ho, to avenge my
father and mother!" Then giving his sword to Kaylajan,[FN#54] he drave
at Ajib and smote him with his mace a smashing blow and a swashing,
that went nigh to beat in his ribs, and seizing him by the mail gorges
tore him from the saddle and cast him to the ground; whereupon the two
Marids pounced upon him and binding him fast, dragged him off dejected
and abject; whilst Gharib rejoiced in the capture of his enemy and
repeated these couplets of the poet,

"I have won my wish and my need have scored * Unto Thee be the praise
and the thanks, O our
I grew up dejected and abject; poor, * But Allah vouchsafed me all
boons implored:
I have conquered countries and mastered men * But for Thee were I
naught, O thou Lord

When Ra'ad Shah saw how evilly Ajib fared with his brother, he called
for his charger and donning his harness and habergeon, mounted and
dashed out a field. As soon as he drew near King Gharib, he cried out
at him, saying, "O basest of Arabs and bearer of scrubs,[FN#55] who art
thou, that thou shouldest capture Kings and braves? Down from thy horse
and put elbows behind back and kiss my feet and set my warriors free
and go with me in bond of chains to my reign that I may pardon thee and
make thee a Shaykh in our own land, so mayst thou eat there a bittock
of bread." When Gharib heard these words he laughed till he fell
backwards and answered, saying, "O mad hound and mangy wolf, soon shalt
thou see against whom the shifts of Fortune will turn!" Then he cried
out to Sahim, saying, "Bring me the prisoners;" so he brought them, and
Gharib smote off their heads; whereupon Ra'ad Shah drave at him, with
the driving of a lordly champion and the onslaught of a fierce
slaughterer and they falsed and feinted and fought till nightfall, when
the kettle-drums beat the retreat.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
kettledrums beat the retreat, the two Kings parted and returned, each
to his own place where his people gave him joy of his safety. And the
Moslems said to Gharib, " 'Tis not thy wont O King, to prolong a
fight;" and he replied, "O folk, I have done battle with many
royalties[FN#56] and champions; but never saw I a harder hitter than
this one. Had I chosen to draw Al-Mahik upon him, I had mashed his
bones and made an end of his days: but I delayed with him, thinking to
take him prisoner and give him part enjoyment in Al-Islam." Thus far
concerning Gharib; but as regards Ra'ad Shah, he returned to his
marquee and sat upon his throne, when his Chiefs came in to him and
asked him of his adversary, and he answered, "By the truth of the
sparkling Fire, never in my life saw I the like of yonder brave! But
to-morrow I will take him prisoner and lead him away dejected and
abject." Then they slept till daybreak, when the battle-drums beat to
fight and the swords in baldric were dight; and war-cries were cried
amain and all mounted their horses of generous strain and drew out into
the field, filling every wide place and hill and plain. The first to
open the door of war was the rider outrageous and the lion rageous,
King Gharib, who drave his steed between the two hosts and wheeled and
careered over the field, crying, "Who is for fray, who is for fight?
Let no sluggard come out to me this day nor dullard!" Before he had
made an end of speaking, out rushed Ra'ad Shah, riding on an elephant,
as he were a vast tower, in a seat girthed with silken bands; and
between the elephant's ears sat the driver, bearing in hand a hook,
wherewith he goaded the beast and directed him right and left. When the
elephant drew near Gharib's horse, and the steed saw a creature it had
never before set eyes on, it took fright;[FN#57] wherefore Gharib
dismounted and gave the horse to Kaylajan. Then he drew Al-Mahik and
advanced to meet Ra'ad Shah a-foot, walking on till he faced the
elephant. Now it was Ra'ad Shah's wont, when he found himself
overmatched by any brave, to mount an elephant, taking with him an
implement called the lasso,[FN#58] which was in the shape of a net,
wide at base and narrow at top with a running cord of silk passed
through rings along its edges. With this he would attack horsemen and
casting the meshes over them, draw the running noose and drag the rider
off his horse and make him prisoner; and thus had he conquered many
cavaliers. So, as Gharib came up to him, he raised his hand and,
despreading the net over him, pulled him on to the back of the elephant
and cried out to the beast to return to the Indian camp. But Kaylajan
and Kurajan had not left Gharib and, when they beheld what had befallen
their lord, they laid hold of the elephant, whilst Gharib strove with
the net, till he rent it in sunder. Upon this the two Marids seized
Ra'ad Shah and bound him with a cord of palm fibre. Then the two armies
drove each at other and met with a shock like two seas crashing or two
mountains together dashing, whilst the dust rose to the confines of the
sky and blinded was every eye. The battle waxed fierce and fell, the
blood ran in rills, nor did they cease to wage war with lunge of lance
and sway of sword in lustiest way, till the day darkened and the night
starkened, when the drums beat the retreat and the two hosts drew
asunder.[FN#59] Now the Moslems were evilly entreated that day by
reason of the riders on elephants and giraffes,[FN#60] and many of them
were killed and most of the rest were wounded. This was grievous to
Gharib who commanded the hurt to be medicined and turning to his Chief
Officers, asked them what they counselled. Answered they, "O King, 'tis
only the elephants and giraffes that irk us; were we but quit of them,
we should overcome the enemy." Quoth Kaylajan and Kurajan, "We twain
will unsheath our swords and fall on them and slay the most part of
them." But there came forward a man of Oman, who had been privy
counsellor to Jaland and said, "O King, I will be surety for the host,
an thou wilt but hearken to me and follow my counsel." Gharib turned to
his Captains and said to them, "Whatsoever this wise man shall say to
you that do."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Gharib
said to his Captains, "Whatsoever this wise man shall say to you, that
do"; they replied, "Hearing and obeying!" So the Omani chose out ten
captains and asked them, "How many braves have ye under your hands?";
and they answered, "Ten thousand fighting-men." Then he carried them
into the armoury and armed five thousand of them with harquebuses and
other five thousand with cross bows and taught them to shoot with these
new weapons.[FN#61] Now as soon as it was day, the Indians came out to
the field, armed cap-à-pie, with the elephants, giraffes and champions
in their van; whereupon Gharib and his men mounted and both hosts drew
out and the big drums beat to battle. Then the man of Oman cried out to
the archers and harquebusiers to shoot, and they plied the elephants
and giraffes with shafts and leaden bullets, which entered the beasts'
flanks, whereat they roared out and turning upon their own ranks, trod
them down with their hoofs. Presently the Moslems charged the
Misbelievers and outflanked them right and left, whilst the elephants
and giraffes trampled them and drove them into the hills and words,
whither the Moslems followed hard upon them with the keen-edged sword
and but few of the giraffes and elephants escaped. Then King Gharib and
his folk returned, rejoicing in their victory; and on the morrow they
divided the loot and rested five days; after which King Gharib sat down
on the throne of his kingship and sending for his brother Ajib, said to
him, "O dog, why hast thou assembled the Kings against us? But He who
hath power over all things hath given us the victory over thee. So
embrace the Saving Faith and thou shalt be saved, and I will forbear to
avenge my father and mother on thee therefor, and I will make thee King
again as thou wast, placing myself under thy hand." But Ajib said, "I
will not leave my faith." So Gharib bade lay him in irons and appointed
an hundred stalwart slaves to guard him; after which he turned to Ra'ad
Shah and said to him, "How sayst thou of the faith of Al-Islam?"
Replied he, "O my lord, I will enter thy faith; for, were it not a true
Faith and a goodly, thou hadst not conquered us. Put forth thy hand and
I will testify that there is no god but the God and that Abraham the
Friend is the Apostle of God." At this Gharib rejoiced and said to him,
"Is thy heart indeed stablished in the sweetness of this Belief?" And
he answered, saying, "Yes, O my lord!" Then quoth Gharib, "O Ra'ad
Shah, wilt thou go to thy country and thy kingdom?" and quoth he, "O.
my lord, my father will put me to death, for that I have left his
faith." Gharib rejoined, "I will go with thee and make thee king of the
country and constrain the folk to obey thee, by the help of Allah the
Bountiful, the Beneficent." And Ra'ad Shah kissed his hands and feet.
Then Gharib rewarded the counsellor who had caused the rout of the foe
and gave him great wealth; after which he turned to Kaylajan and
Kurajan, and said to them, "Harkye, Chiefs of the Jinn, 'tis my will
that ye carry me, together with Ra'ad Shah and Jamrkan and Sa'adan to
the land of Hind." "We hear and we obey," answered they. So Kurajan
took up Jamrkan and Sa'adan, whilst Kaylajan took Gharib and Ra'ad Shah
and made for the land of Hind.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the two
Marids had taken up Gharib and Jamrkan, Sa'adan the Ghul and Ra'ad
Shah, they flew on with them from sundown till the last of the Night,
when they set them down on the terrace of King Tarkanan's palace at
Cashmere. Now news was brought to Tarkanan by the remnants of his host
of what had befallen his son, whereat he slept not neither took delight
in aught, and he was troubled with sore trouble. As he sat in his
Harim, pondering his case, behold, Gharib and his company descended the
stairways of the palace and came in to him; and when he saw his son and
those who were with him, he was confused and fear took him of the
Marids. Then Ra'ad Shah turned to him and said, "How long wilt thou
persist in thy frowardness, O traitor and worshipper of the Fire? Woe
to thee! Leave worshipping the Fire and serve the Magnanimous Sire,
Creator of day and Night, whom attaineth no sight." When Tarkanan heard
his son's speech, he cast at him an iron club he had by him; but it
missed him and fell upon a buttress of the palace and smote out three
stones. Then cried the King, "O dog, thou hast destroyed mine army and
hast forsaken thy faith and comest now to make me do likewise!" With
this Gharib went up to him and dealt him a cuff on the neck which
knocked him down; whereupon the Marids bound him fast and all the
Harim- women fled. Then Gharib sat down on the throne of kingship and
said to Ra'ad Shah, "Do thou justice upon thy father." So Ra'ad Shah
turned to him and said, "O perverse old man, become one of the saved
and thou shalt be saved from the fire and the wrath of the
All-powerful." But Tarkanan cried, "I will not die save in my own
faith." Whereupon Gharib drew Al-Mahik and smote him therewith and he
fell to the earth in two pieces, and Allah hurried his soul to the fire
and abiding-place dire.[FN#62] Then Gharib bade hang his body over the
palace gate and they hung one half on the right hand and the other on
the left and waited till day, when Gharib caused Ra'ad Shah don the
royal habit and sit down on his father's throne, with himself on his
dexter hand and Jamrkan and Sa'adan and the Marids standing right and
left; and he said to Kaylajan and Kurajan, "Whoso entereth of the
Princes and Officers, seize him and bind him, and let not a single
Captain escape you." And they answered, "Hearkening and obedience!"
Presently, the Officers made for the palace, to do their service to the
King, and the first to appear was the Chief Captain who, seeing King
Tarkanan's dead body cut in half and hanging on either side of the
gate, was seized with terror and amazement. Then Kaylajan laid hold of
him by the collar and threw him and intoned him; after which he dragged
him into the palace and before sunrise they had bound three hundred and
fifty Captains and set them before Gharib, who said to them, "O folk,
have you seen your King hanging at the palace gate?" Asked they, "Who
hath done this deed?"; and he answered, "I did it, by the help of Allah
Almighty; and whoso opposeth me, I will do with him likewise." Then
quoth they, "What is thy will with us?"; and quoth he, "I am Gharib,
King of Al-Irak, he who slew your warriors; and now Ra'ad Shah hath
embraced the Faith of Salvation and is become a mighty King and ruler
over you. So do ye become True Believers and all shall be well with
you; but, if ye refuse, you shall repent it." So they pronounced the
profession of the Faith and were enrolled among the people of felicity.
Then said Gharib, "Are your hearts indeed stablished in the sweetness
of the Belief?"; and they replied, "Yes"; whereupon he bade release
them and clad them in robes of honour, saying, "Go to your people and
expound Al-Islam to them. Whoso accepteth the Faith spare him; but if
he refuse slay him."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
to say her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that King Gharib
said to the troops of Ra'ad Shah, "Go to your people and offer Al-Islam
to them. Whoso accepteth the Faith spare him; but if he refuse, slay
him." So they went out and, assembling the men under their command,
explained what had taken place and expounded Al-Islam to them and they
all professed. except a few, whom they put to death; after which they
returned and told Gharib, who blessed Allah and glorified Him, saying,
"Praised be the Almighty who hath made this thing easy to us without
strife!" Then he abode in Cashmere of India forty days, till he had
ordered the affairs of the country and cast down the shrines and
temples of the Fire and built in their stead mosques and cathedrals,
whilst Ra'ad Shah made ready for him rarities and treasures beyond
count and despatched them to Al-Irak in ships. Then Gharib mounted on
Kaylajan's back and Jamrkan and Sa'adan on that of Kurajan, after they
had taken leave of Ra'ad Shah; and journeyed through the night till
break of day, when they reached Oman city where their troops met them
and saluted them and rejoiced in them. Then they set out for Cufa where
Gharib called for his brother Ajib and commanded to hang him. So Sahim
brought hooks of iron and driving them into the tendons of Ajib's
heels, hung him over the gate; and Gharib bade them shoot him; so they
riddled him with arrows, till he was like unto a porcupine. Then Gharib
entered his palace and sitting down on the throne of his kingship,
passed the day in ordering the affairs of the state. At nightfall he
went in to his Harim, where Star o' Morn came to meet him and embraced
him and gave him joy, she and her women, of his safety. He spent that
day and lay that night with her and on the morrow, after he had made
the Ghusl-ablution and prayed the dawn-prayer, he sat down on his
throne and commanded preparation to be made for his marriage with
Mahdiyah. Accordingly they slaughtered three thousand head of sheep and
two thousand oxen and a thousand he goats and five hundred camels and
the like number of horses, beside four thousand fowls and great store
of geese; never was such wedding in Al-Islam to that day. Then he went
in to Mahdiyah and took her maidenhead and abode with her ten days;
after which he committed the kingdom to his uncle Al-Damigh, charging
him to rule the lieges justly, and journeyed with his women and
warriors, till he came to the ships laden with the treasures and
rarities which Ra'ad Shah had sent him, and divided the monies among
his men who from poor became rich. Then they fared on till they reached
the city of Babel, where he bestowed on Sahim Al-Layl a robe of honour
and appointed him Sultan of the city.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Gharib, after
robing his brother Sahim and appointing him Sultan, abode with him ten
days, after which he set out again and journeyed nor stinted travel
till he reached the castle of Sa'adan the Ghul, where they rested five
days. Then quoth Gharib to Kaylajan and Kurajan, "Pass over to Isbání­r
al-Madáin, to the palace of the Chosroe, and find what is come of Fakhr
Taj and bring me one of the King's kinsmen, who shall acquaint me with
what hath passed." Quoth they, "We hear and we obey," and set out
forthright for Isbanir. As they flew between heaven and earth, behold,
they caught sight of a mighty army, as it were the surging sea, and
Kaylajan said to Kurajan, "Let us descend and determine what be this
host." So they alighted and walking among the troops, found them
Persians and questioned the soldiers whose men they were and whither
they were bound; whereto they made answer, "We are en route for
Al-Irak, to slay Gharib and all who company him." When the Marids heard
these words, they repaired to the pavilion of the Persian general,
whose name was Rustam, and waited till the soldiers slept, when they
took up Rustam, bed and all, and made for the castle where Gharib lay.
They arrived there by midnight and going to the door of the King's
pavilion, cried, "Permission!" which when he heard, he sat up and said,
"Come in." So they entered and set down the couch with Rustam asleep
thereon. Gharib asked, "Who be this?" and they answered, "This be a
Persian Prince, whom we met coming with a great host, thinking to slay
thee and thine, and we have brought him to thee, that he may tell thee
what thou hast a mind to know." "Fetch me an hundred braves!" cried
Gharib, and they fetched them; whereupon he bade them, "Draw your
swords and stand at the head of this Persian carle!" Then they awoke
him and he opened his eyes; and, finding an arch of steel over his
head, shut them again, crying, "What be this foul dream?" But Kaylajan
pricked him with his sword point and he sat up and said, "Where am I?"
Quoth Sahim, "Thou art in the presence of King Gharib, son-in- law of
the King of the Persians. What is thy name and whither goest thou?"
When Rustam heard Gharib's name' he bethought himself and said in his
mind, "Am I asleep or awake? Whereupon Sahim dealt him a buffet,
saying, "Why dost thou not answer?" And he raised his head and asked,
"Who brought me from my tent out of the midst of my men?" Gharib
answered, "These two Marids brought thee." So he looked at Kaylajan and
Kurajan and skited in his bag-trousers. Then the Marids fell upon him,
baring their tusks and brandishing their blades, and said to him, "Wilt
thou not rise and kiss ground before King Gharib?" And he trembled at
them and was assured that he was not asleep; so he stood up and kissed
the ground between the hands of Gharib, saying, "The blessing of the
Fire be on thee, and long life be thy life, O King!" Gharib cried, "O
dog of the Persians, fire is not worshipful, for that it is harmful and
profiteth not save in cooking food." Asked Rustam, "Who then is
worshipful?"; and Gharib answered, "Alone worshipworth is God, who
formed thee and fashioned thee and created the heavens and the earth."
Quoth the Ajami, "What shall I say that I may become of the party of
this Lord and enter thy Faith?"; and quoth Gharib, "Say, 'There is no
god but the God, and Abraham is the Friend of God'." So Rustam
pronounced the profession of the Faith and was enrolled among the
people of felicity. Then said he to Gharib, "Know, O my lord, that thy
father-in-law, King Sabur, seeketh to slay thee; and indeed he hath
sent me with an hundred thousand men, charging me to spare none of
you." Gharib rejoined, "Is this my reward for having delivered his
daughter from death and dishonour? Allah will requite him his ill
intent. But what is thy name?" The Persian answered, "My name is
Rustam, general of Sabur;" and Gharib, "Thou shalt have the like rank
in my army," adding, "But tell me, O Rustam, how is it with the
Princess Fakhr Taj?" "May thy head live, O King of the age!" "What was
the cause of her death?" Rustam replied, "O my lord, no sooner hadst
thou left us than one of the Princess's women went in to King Sabur and
said to him, 'O my master, didst thou give Gharib leave to lie with the
Princess my mistress?' whereto he answered, 'No, by the virtue of the
fire!' and drawing his sword, went in to his daughter and said to her,
'O foul baggage, why didst thou suffer yonder Badawi to sleep with
thee, without dower or even wedding?' She replied, 'O my papa, 'twas
thou gavest him leave to sleep with me.' Then he asked, 'Did the fellow
have thee?' but she was silent and hung down her head. Hereupon he
cried out to the midwives and slave-girls, saying, 'Pinion me this
harlot's elbows behind her and look at her privy parts.' So they did as
he bade them and after inspecting her slit said to him, 'O King, she
hath lost her maidenhead. Whereupon he ran at her and would have slain
her, but her mother rose up and threw herself between them crying, 'O
King, slay her not, lest thou be for ever dishonoured; but shut her in
a cell till she die.' So he cast her into prison till nightfall, when
he called two of his courtiers and said to them, 'Carry her afar off
and throw her into the river Jayhun and tell none.' They did his
commandment, and indeed her memory is forgotten and her time is
past."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Gharib
asked news of Fakhr Taj, Rustam informed him that she had been drowned
in the river by her sire's command. And when Gharib heard this, the
world waxed wan before his eyes and he cried, "By the virtue of Abraham
the Friend, I will assuredly go to yonder dog and overwhelm him and lay
waste his realm!" Then he sent letters to Jamrkan and to the governors
of Mosul and Mayyáfárí­kí­n; and, turning to Rustam, said to him, "How
many men hadst thou in thine army?" He replied, "An hundred thousand
Persian horse;" and Gharib rejoined, "Take ten thousand horse and go to
thy people and occupy them with war; I will follow on thy trail." So
Rustam mounted and taking ten thousand Arab horse made for his tribe,
saying in himself, "I will do a deed shall whiten my face with King
Gharib." So he fared on seven days, till there remained but half a
day's journey between him and the Persian camp; when, dividing his host
into four divisions he said to his men, "Surround the Persians on all
sides and fall upon them with the sword." They rode on from eventide
till midnight, when they had compassed the camp of the Ajams, who were
asleep in security, and fell upon them, shouting, "God is Most Great!"
Whereupon the Persians started up from sleep and their feet slipped and
the sabre went round amongst them; for the All-knowing King was wroth
with them, and Rustam wrought amongst them as fire in dry fuel; till,
by the end of the night, the whole of the Persian host was slain or
wounded or fled, and the Moslems made prize of their tents and baggage,
horses, camels and treasure-chests. Then they alighted and rested in
the tents of the Ajams till King Gharib came up and, seeing what Rustam
had done and how he had gained by stratagem a great and complete
victory, he invested him with a robe of honour and said to him, "O
Rustam, it was thou didst put the Persians to the rout; wherefore all
the spoil is thine." So he kissed Gharib's hand and thanked him, and
they rested till the end of the day, when they set out for King Sabur's
capital. Meanwhile, the fugitives of the defeated force reached Isbanir
and went in to Sabur, crying out and saying, "Alas!" and "Well-away!"
and "Woe worth the day!" Quoth he, "What hath befallen you and who with
his mischief hath smitten you?" So they told him all that had passed
and said, "Naught befel us except that thy general Rustam, fell upon us
in the darkness of the night because he had turned Moslem; nor did
Gharib come near us." When the King heard this, he cast his crown to
the ground and said, "There is no worth left us!" Then he turned to his
son Ward Shah[FN#63] and said to him, "O my son, there is none for this
affair save thou." Answered Ward Shah, "By thy life, O my father, I
will assuredly bring Gharib and his chiefs of the people in chains and
slay all who are with him." Then he numbered his army and found it two
hundred and twenty thousand men. So they slept, intending to set forth
on the morrow; but, next morning, as they were about to march, behold,
a cloud of dust arose and spread till it walled the world and baffled
the sight of the farthest-seeing wight. Now Sabur had mounted to
farewell his son, and when he saw this mighty great dust, he let call a
runner and said to him, "Go find me out the cause of this dust-cloud."
The scout went and returned, saying, "O my lord, Gharib and his braves
are upon you;" whereupon they unloaded their bât-beasts and drew out in
line of battle. When Gharib came up and saw the Persians ranged in row,
he cried out to his men, saying, "Charge with the blessing of Allah!"
So they waved the flags, and the Arabs and the Ajamis drave one at
other and folk were heaped upon folk. Blood ran like water and all
souls saw death face to face; the brave advanced and pressed forward to
assail and the coward hung back and turned tail and they ceased not
from fight and fray till ended day, when the kettle-drums beat the
retreat and the two hosts drew apart. Then Sabur commanded to pitch his
camp hard over the city-gate, and Gharib set up his pavilions in front
of theirs; and every one went to his tent.—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the two
hosts drew apart, every one went to his tent until the morning. As soon
as it was day, the two hosts mounted their strong steeds and levelled
their lances and wore their harness of war; then they raised their
slogan cries and drew out in battle-array, whilst came forth all the
lordly knights and the lions of fights. Now the first to open the gate
of battle was Rustam, who urged his charger into mid-field and cried
out, "God is most Great! I am Rustam, champion-in-chief of the Arabs
and Ajams. Who is for tilting, who is for fighting? Let no sluggard
come out to me this day or weakling!" Then there rushed forth to him a
champion of the Persians; the two charged each other and there befel
between them a sore fight, till Rustam sprang upon his adversary and
smote him with a mace he had with him, seventy pounds in weight, and
beat his head down upon his breast, and he fell to the earth, dead and
in his blood drowned. This was no light matter to Sabur and he
commanded his men to charge; so they drave at the Moslems, invoking the
aid of the light-giving Sun, whilst the True Believers called for help
upon the Magnanimous King. But the Ajams, the Miscreants, outnumbered
the Arabs, the Moslems, and made them drain the cup of death; which
when Gharib saw he drew his sword Al-Mahik and crying out his war-cry,
fell upon the Persians, with Kaylajan and Kurajan at either stirrup;
nor did he leave playing upon them with blade till he hewed his way to
the standard-bearer and smote him on the head with the flat of his
sword, whereupon he fell down in a fainting-fit and the two Marids bore
him off to their camp. When the Persians saw the standard fall, they
turned and fled and for the city-gates made; but the Moslems followed
them with the blade and they crowded together to enter the city, so
that they could not shut the gates and there died of them much people.
Then Rustam and Sa'adan, Jamrkan and Sahim, Al-Damigh, Kaylajan and
Kurajan and all the braves Mohammedan and the champions of Faith
Unitarian fell upon the misbelieving Persians in the gates, and the
blood of the Kafirs ran in the streets like a torrent till they threw
down their arms and harness and called out for quarter; whereupon the
Moslems stayed their swords from the slaughter and drove them to their
tents, as one driveth a flock of sheep. Meanwhile Gharib returned to
his pavilion, where he doffed his gear and washed himself of the blood
of the Infidels; after which he donned his royal robes and sat down on
his chair of estate. Then he called for the King of the Persians and
said to him, "O dog of the Ajams, what moved thee to deal thus with thy
daughter? How seest thou me unworthy to be her baron?" And Sabur
answered, saying, "O King, punish me not because of that deed which I
did; for I repent me and confronted thee not in fight but in my fear of
thee.''[FN#64] When Gharib heard these words he bade throw him flat and
beat him. So they bastinadoed him, till he could no longer groan, and
cast him among the prisoners. Then Gharib expounded Al-Islam to the
Persians and one hundred and twenty thousand of them embraced The
Faith, and the rest he put to the sword. Moreover all the citizens
professed Al-Islam and Gharib mounted and entered in great state the
city Isbanir Al-Madain. Then he went into the King's palace and sitting
down on Sabur's throne, gave robes and largesse and distributed the
booty and treasure among the Arabs and Persians, wherefore they loved
him and wished him victory and honour and endurance of days. But Fakhr
Taj's mother remembered her daughter and raised the voice of mourning
for her, and the palace was filled with wails and cries. Gharib heard
this and entering the Harim, asked the women what ailed them, whereupon
the Princess's mother came forward and said, "O my lord, thy presence
put me in mind of my daughter and how she would have joyed in thy
coming, had she been alive and well." Gharib wept for her and sitting
down on his throne, called for Sabur, and they brought him stumbling in
his shackles. Quoth Gharib to him, "O dog of the Persians, what didst
thou do with thy daughter?" "I gave her to such an one and such an
one," quoth the King, "saying, 'Drown her in the river Jayhún.'" So
Gharib sent for the two men and asked them, "Is what he saith true?"
Answered they, "Yes; but, O King, we did not drown her, nay we took
pity on her and left her on the banks of the Jayhun, saying, 'Save
thyself and return not to the city, lest the King slay thee and slay us
with thee.' This is all we know of her."—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Six Hundred and Seventieth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the two men
ended the tale of Fakhr Taj with these words, "And we left her upon the
bank of the river Jayhun!" Now, when Gharib heard this he bade bring
the astrologers and said to them, "Strike me a board of geomancy and
find out what is come of Fakhr Taj, and whether she is still in the
bonds of life or dead." They did so and said, "O King of the age, it is
manifest to us that the Princess is alive and hath borne a male child;
but she is with a tribe of the Jinn, and will be parted from thee
twenty years; count, therefore, how many years thou hast been absent in
travel." So he reckoned up the years of his absence and found them
eight years and said, "There is no Majesty and there is no Might save
in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!''[FN#65] Then he sent for all
Sabur's Governors of towns and strongholds and they came and did him
homage. Now one day after this, as he sat in his palace, behold, a
cloud of dust appeared in the distance and spread till it walled the
whole land and darkened the horizon. So he summoned the two Marids and
bade them reconnoitre, and they went forth under the dust-cloud and
snatching up a horseman of the advancing host, returned and set him
down before Gharib, saying, "Ask this fellow, for he is of the army."
Quoth Gharib, "Whose power is this?" and the man answered, "O King,
'tis the army of Khirad Shah,[FN#66] King of Shiras, who is come forth
to fight thee." Now the cause of Khirad Shah's coming was this. When
Gharib defeated Sabur's army, as hath been related, and took him
prisoner, the King's son fled, with a handful of his father's force and
ceased not flying till he reached the city of Shiras, where he went
into King Khirad Shah and kissed ground before him, whilst the tears
ran down his cheeks. When the King saw him in this case, he said to
him, "Lift thy head, O youth, and tell me what maketh thee weep." He
replied, "O King, a King of the Arabs, by name Gharib, hath fallen on
us and captured the King my sire and slain the Persians making them
drain the cup of death." And he told him all that had passed from first
to last. Quoth Khirad Shah, "Is my wife[FN#67] well?" and quoth the
Prince, "Gharib hath taken her." Cried the King "As my head liveth, I
will not leave a Badawi or a Moslem on the face of the earth!" So he
wrote letters to his Viceroys, who levied their troops and joined him
with an army which when reviewed numbered eighty-five thousand men.
Then he opened his armouries and distributed arms and armour to the
troops, after which he set out with them and journeyed till he came to
Isbanir, and all encamped before the city-gate. Hereupon Kaylajan and
Kurajan came in to Gharib and kissing his knee, said to him, "O our
Lord, heal our hearts and give us this host to our share." And he said,
"Up and at them!" So the two Marids flew aloft high in the lift and
lighting down in the pavilion of the King of Shiras, found him seated
on his chair of estate, with the Prince of Persia Ward Shah son of
Sabur, sitting on his right hand, and about him his Captains, with whom
he was taking counsel for the slaughter of the Moslems. Kaylajan came
forward and caught up the Prince and Kurajan snatched up the King and
the twain flew back with them to Gharib, who caused beat them till they
fainted Then the Marids returned to the Shirazian camp and, drawing
their swords, which no mortal man had strength to wield, fell upon the
Misbelievers and Allah hurried their souls to the Fire and
abiding-place dire, whilst they saw no one and nothing save two swords
flashing and reaping men, as a husbandman reaps corn. So they left
their tents and mounting their horses bare- backed, fled; and the
Marids pursued them two days and slew of them much people; after which
they returned and kissed Gharib's hand. He thanked them for the deed
they had done and said to them, "The spoil of the Infidels is yours
alone: none shall share with you therein." So they called down
blessings on him and going forth, gathered the booty together and abode
in their own homes. On this wise it fared with them; but as regards
Gharib and his lieges,—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that after Gharib
had put to flight the host of Khirad Shah, he bade Kaylajan and Kurajan
take the spoil to their own possession nor share it with any; so they
gathered the booty and abode in their own homes. Meanwhile the remains
of the beaten force ceased not flying till they reached the city of
Shiras and there lifted up the voice of weeping and began the
ceremonial lamentations for those of them that had been slain. Now King
Khirad Shah had a brother Sí­rán the Sorcerer  hight, than whom there
was no greater wizard in his day, and he lived apart from his brother
in a certain stronghold, called the Fortalice of Fruits,[FN#68] in a
place abounding in trees and streams and birds and blooms, half a day's
journey from Shiras. So the fugitives betook them thither and went in
to Siran the Sorcerer, weeping and wailing aloud. Quoth he, "O folk,
what garreth you weep?" and they told him all that had happened,
especially how the two Marids had carried off his brother Khirad Shah;
whereupon the light of his eyes became night and he said, "By the
virtue of my faith, I will certainly slay Gharib and all his men and
leave not one alive to tell the tale!" Then he pronounced certain
magical words and summoned the Red King, who appeared and Siran said to
him, "Fare for Isbanir and fall on Gharib, as he sitteth upon his
throne." Replied he, "Hearkening and obedience!" and, gathering his
troops, repaired to Isbanir and assailed Gharib, who seeing him, drew
his sword Al-Mahik and he and Kaylajan and Kurajan fell upon the army
of the Red King and slew of them five hundred and thirty and wounded
the King himself with a grevious wound; whereupon he and his people
fled and stayed not in their flight, till they reached the Fortalice of
Fruits and went into Siran, crying out and exclaiming, "Woe!" and
"Ruin!" And the Red King said to Siran, "O sage, Gharib hath with him
the enchanted sword of Japhet son of Noah, and whomsoever he smiteth
therewith he severeth him in sunder, and with him also are two Marids
from Mount Caucasus, given to him by King Mura'ash. He it is who slew
the Blue King and Barkan Lord of the Carnelian City, and did to death
much people of the Jinn." When the Enchanter heard this, he said to the
Red King "Go," and he went his ways; whereupon he resumed his
conjurations, and calling up a Marid, by name Zu'ázi'a gave him a
drachm of levigated Bhang and said to him, "Go thou to Isbanir and
enter King Gharib's palace and assume the form of a sparrow. Wait till
he fall asleep and there be none with him; then put the Bhang up his
nostrils and bring him to me." "To hear is to obey," replied the Marid
and flew to Isbanir, where, changing himself into a sparrow, he perched
on the window of the palace and waited till all Gharib's attendants
retired to their rooms and the King himself slept. Then he flew down
and going up to Gharib, blew the powdered Bhang into his nostrils, till
he lost his senses, whereupon he wrapped him in the bed-coverlet and
flew off with him, like the storm-wind, to the Fortalice of Fruits;
where he arrived at midnight and laid his prize before Siran. The
Sorcerer thanked him and would have put Gharib to death, as he lay
senseless under Bhang; but a man of his people withheld him saying, "O
Sage, an thou slay him, his friend King Mura'ash will fall on us with
all his Ifrits and lay waste our realm." "How then shall we do with
him?" asked Siran, and the other answered, "Cast him into the Jayhun
while he is still in Bhang and he shall be drowned and none will know
who threw him in." And Siran bade the Marid take Gharib and cast him
into Jayhun river.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
to say her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Marid took
Gharib and carried him to the Jayhun purposing to cast him therein, but
it was grievous to him to drown him, wherefore he made a raft of wood
and binding it with cords, pushed it out (and Gharib thereon) into the
current, which carried it away. Thus fared it with Gharib; but as
regards his people, when they awoke in the morning and went in to do
their service to their King, they found him not and seeing his rosary
on the throne, awaited him awhile, but he came not. So they sought out
the head Chamberlain and said to him, "Go into the Harim and look for
the King: for it is not his habit to tarry till this time."
Accordingly, the Chamberlain entered the Serraglio and enquired for the
King, but the women said, "Since yesterday we have not seen him."
Thereupon he returned and told the Officers, who were confounded and
said, "Let us see if he have gone to take his pleasure in the gardens."
Then they went out and questioned the gardeners if they had seen the
King, and they answered, "No;" whereat they were sore concerned and
searched all the garths till the end of the day, when they returned in
tears. Moreover, the two Marids sought for him all round the city, but
came back after three days, without having happened on any tidings of
him. So the people donned black and made their complaint to the Lord of
all worshipping men who doth as he is fain. Meanwhile, the current bore
the raft along for five days till it brought it to the salt sea, where
the waves disported with Gharib and his stomach, being troubled, threw
up the Bhang. Then he opened his eyes and finding himself in the midst
of the main, a plaything of the billows, said, "There is no Majesty and
there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great! Would to
Heaven I wot who hath done this deed by me!" Presently as he lay,
perplexed concerning his case, lo! he caught sight of a ship sailing by
and signalled with his sleeve to the sailors, who came to him and took
him up, saying, "Who art thou and whence comest thou?" He replied, "Do
ye feed me and give me to drink, till I recover myself, and after I
will tell you who I am." So they brought him water and victual, and he
ate and drank and Allah restored to him his reason. Then he asked them,
"O folk, what countrymen are ye and what is your Faith?;" and they
answered, "We are from Karaj[FN#69] and we worship an idol called
Minkásh." Cried Gharib, "Perdition to you and your idol! O dogs, none
is worthy of worship save Allah who created all things, who saith to a
thing Be! and it becometh." When they heard this, they rose up and fell
upon him in great wrath and would have seized him. Now he was without
weapons, but whomsoever he struck, he smote down and deprived of life,
till he had felled forty men, after which they overcame him by force of
numbers and bound him fast, saying, "We will not slay him save in our
own land, that we may first show him to our King." Then they sailed on
till they came to the city of Karaj.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
ship's crew seized Gharib and bound him fast they said, "We will not
slay him save in our own land." Then they sailed on till they came to
the city of Karaj, the builder whereof was an Amalekite, fierce and
furious; and he had set up at each gate of the city a magical figure of
copper which, whenever a stranger entered, blew a blast on a trumpet,
that all in the city heard it and fell upon the stranger and slew him,
except they embraced their creed. When Gharib entered the city, the
figure stationed at the gate blew such a horrible blast that the King
was affrighted and going into his idol, found fire and smoke issuing
from its mouth, nose and eyes. Now a Satan had entered the belly of the
idol and speaking as with its tongue, said, "O King, there is come to
thy city one hight Gharib, King of Al-Irak, who biddeth the folk quit
their belief and worship his Lord; wherefore, when they bring him
before thee, look thou spare him not." So the King went out and sat
down on his throne; and presently, the sailors brought in Gharib and
set him before the presence, saying, "O King, we found this youth
shipwrecked in the midst of the sea, and he is a Kafir and believeth
not in our gods." Then they told him all that had passed and the King
said, "Carry him to the house of the Great Idol and cut his throat
before him, so haply our god may look lovingly upon us." But the Wazir
said, "O King, it befitteth not to slaughter him thus, for he would die
in a moment: better we imprison him and build a pyre of fuel and burn
him with fire." Thereupon the King commanded to cast Gharib into gaol
and caused wood to be brought, and they made a mighty pyre and set fire
to it, and it burnt till the morning. Then the King and the people of
the city came forth and the Ruler sent to fetch Gharib; but his lieges
found him not; so they returned and told their King who said, "And how
made he his escape?" Quoth they, "We found the chains and shackles cast
down and the doors fast locked." Whereat the King marvelled and asked,
"Hath this fellow to Heaven up flown or into the earth gone down?;' and
they answered, "We know not." Then said the King, "I will go and
question my God, and he will inform me whither he is gone." So he rose
and went in, to prostrate himself to his idol, but found it not and
began to rub his eyes and say, "Am I in sleep or on wake?" Then he
turned to his Wazir and said to him, "Where is my God and where is my
prisoner? By my faith, O dog of Wazirs, haddest thou not counselled me
to burn him, I had slaughtered him; for it is he who hath stolen my god
and fled; and there is no help but I take brood-wreak of him!" Then he
drew his sword and struck off the Wazir's head. Now there was for
Gharib's escape with the idol a strange cause and it was on this wise.
When they had shut him up in a cell adjoining the doomed shrine under
which stood the idol, he rose to pray, calling upon the name of
Almighty Allah and seeking deliverance of Him, to whom be honour and
glory! The Marid who had charge of the idol and spoke in its name,
heard him and fear got hold upon his heart and he said, "O shame upon
me! Who is this seeth me while I see him not?" So he went in to Gharib
and throwing himself at his feet, said to him, "O my Lord, what must I
say that I may become of thy company and enter thy religion?" Replied
Gharib, "Say, 'There is no god but the God and Abraham is the Friend of
God.'" So the Marid pronounced the profession of Faith and was enrolled
among the people of felicity. Now his name was Zalzál, son of
Al-Muzalzil,[FN#70] one of the Chiefs of the Kings of the Jinn. Then he
unbound Gharib and taking him and the idol, made for the higher
air.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Marid took up
Gharib and the idol and made for the higher air. Such was his case; but
as regards the King, when his soldiers saw what had befallen and the
slaughter of the Wazir they renounced the worship of the idol and
drawing their swords, slew the King; after which they fell on one
another, and the sword went round amongst them three days, till there
abode alive but two men, one of whom prevailed over the other and
killed him. Then the boys attacked the survivor and slew him and fell
to fighting amongst themselves, till they were all killed; and the
women and girls fled to the hamlets and forted villages; wherefore the
city became desert and none dwelt therein but the owl. Meanwhile, the
Marid Zalzal flew with Gharib towards his own country, the Island of
Camphor and the Castle of Crystal and the Land of the Enchanted Calf,
so called because its King Al-Muzalzil, had a pied calf, which he had
clad in housings brocaded with red gold, and worshipped as a god. One
day the King and his people went in to the calf and found him
trembling; so the King said, "O my God, what hath troubled thee?"
whereupon the Satan in the calf's belly cried out and said, "O
Muzalzil, verily thy son hath deserted to the Faith of Abraham the
Friend, at the hands of Gharib Lord of Al-Irak;" and went on to tell
him all that had passed from first to last. When the King heard the
words of his calf he was confounded and going forth, sat down upon his
throne. Then he summoned his Grandees who came in a body, and he told
them what he had heard from the idol, whereat they marvelled and said,
"What shall we do, O King?" Quoth he, "When my son cometh and ye see
him embrace him, do ye lay hold of him." And they said, "Hearkening and
obedience!" After two days came Zalzal and Gharib, with the King's idol
of Karaj, but no sooner had they entered the palace-gate than the Jinn
seized on them and carried them before Al-Muzalzil, who looked at his
son with eyes of ire and said to him, "O dog of the Jann, hast thou
left thy Faith and that of thy fathers and grandfathers?" Quoth Zalzal,
"I have embraced the True Faith, and on like wise do thou (Woe be to
thee!) seek salvation and thou shalt be saved from the wrath of the
King Almighty in sway, Creator of Night and Day." Therewith his father
waxed wroth and said, "O son of adultery, dost confront me with these
words?" Then he bade clap him in prison and turning to Gharib, said to
him, "O wretch of a mortal, how hast thou abused my son's wit and
seduced him from his Faith?" Quoth Gharib, "Indeed, I have brought him
out of wrongousness into the way of righteousness, out of Hell into
Heaven and out of unfaith to the True Faith." Whereupon the King cried
out to a Marid called Sayyár, saying "Take this dog and cast him into
the Wady of Fire, that he may perish." Now this valley was in the
"Waste Quarter[FN#71]" and was thus named from the excess of its heat
and the flaming of its fire, which was so fierce that none who went
down therein could live an hour, but was destroyed; and it was
compassed about by mountains high and slippery wherein was no opening.
So Sayyar took up Gharib and flew with him towards the Valley of Fire,
till he came within an hour's journey thereof, when being weary, he
alighted in a valley full of trees and streams and fruits, and setting
down from his back Gharib chained as he was, fell asleep for fatigue.
When Gharib heard him snore, he strove with his bonds till he burst
them; then, taking up a heavy stone, he cast it down on the Marid's
head and crushed his bones, so that he died on the spot. Then he fared
on into the valley.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Gharib after
killing the Marid fared on into the valley and found himself in a great
island in mid-ocean, full of all fruits that lips and tongue could
desire. So he abode alone on the island, drinking of its waters and
eating of its fruits and of fish that he caught, and days and years
passed over him, till he had sojourned there in his solitude seven
years. One day, as he sat, behold, there came down on him from the air
two Marids, each carrying a man; and seeing him they said, "Who art
thou, O fellow, and of which of the tribes art thou?" Now they took him
for a Jinni, because his hair was grown long; and he replied, saying,
"I am not of the Jann," whereupon they questioned him, and he told them
all that had befallen him. They grieved for him and one of the Ifrits
said, "Abide thou here till we bear these two lambs to our King, that
he may break his fast on the one and sup on the other, and after we
will come back and carry thee to thine own country." He thanked them
and said, " Where be the lambs?" Quoth they, "These two mortals are the
lambs." And Gharib said, "I take refuge with Allah the God of Abraham
the Friend, the Lord of all creatures, who hath power over everything!
Then the Marids flew away and Gharib abode awaiting them two days, when
one of them returned, bringing with him a suit of clothes wherewith he
clad him. Then he took him up and flew with him sky- high out of sight
of earth, till Gharib heard the angels glorifying God in Heaven, and a
flaming shaft issued from amongst them and made for the Marid, who fled
from it towards the earth. The meteor pursued him, till he came within
a spear's cast of the ground, when Gharib leaped from his shoulders and
the fiery shaft overtook the Marid, who became a heap of ashes. As for
Gharib, he fell into the sea and sank two fathoms deep, after which he
rose to the surface and swam for two days and two nights, till his
strength failed him and he made certain of death. But, on the third day
as he was despairing he caught sight of an island steep and
mountainous; so he swam for it and landing, walked on inland, where he
rested a day and a Night, feeding on the growth of the ground. Then he
climbed to the mountain top, and, descending the opposite slope, fared
on two days till he came in sight of a walled and bulwarked city,
abounding in trees and rills. He walked up to it; but, when he reached
the gate, the warders seized on him, and carried him to their Queen,
whose name was Ján Sháh.[FN#72] Now she was five hundred years old, and
every man who entered the city, they brought to her and she made him
sleep with her, and when he had done his work, she slew him and so had
she slain many men. When she saw Gharib, he pleased her mightily; so
she asked him, "What be thy name and Faith and whence comest thou?" and
he answered, "My name is Gharib King of Irak, and I am a Moslem." Said
she, "Leave this Creed and enter mine and I will marry thee and make
thee King." But he looked at her with eyes of ire and cried, "Perish
thou and thy faith!" Cried she, "Dost thou blaspheme my idol, which is
of red carnelian, set with pearls and gems?" And she called out to her
men, saying, "Imprison him in the house of the idol; haply it will
soften his heart." So they shut him up in the domed shrine and locking
the doors upon him, went their way.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when they took
Gharib, they jailed him in the idol's domed shrine; and locking the
doors upon him, went their way. As soon as they were gone, Gharib gazed
at the idol, which was of red carnelian,  with collars of pearls and
precious stones about its neck, and presently he went close to it and
lifting it up, dashed it on the ground and brake it in bits; after
which he lay down and slept till daybreak. When morning morrowed, the
Queen took seat on her throne and said, "O men, bring me the prisoner."
So they opened the temple doors and entering, found the idol broken in
pieces, whereupon they buffeted their faces till the blood ran from the
corners of their eyes. Then they made at Gharib to seize him; but he
smote one of them with his fist and slew him, and so did he with
another and yet another, till he had slain five-and-twenty of them and
the rest fled and went in to Queen Jan Shah, shrieking loudly. Quoth
she, "What is the matter?" and quoth they, "The prisoner hath broken
thine idol and slain thy men," and told her all that had passed. When
she heard this, she cast her crown to the ground and said, "There is no
worth left in idols!" Then she mounted amid a thousand fighting-men and
rode to the temple, where she found Gharib had gotten him a sword and
come forth and was slaying men and overthrowing warriors. When she saw
his prowess, her heart was drowned in the love of him and she said to
herself, "I have no need of the idol and care for naught save this
Gharib, that he may lie in my bosom the rest of my life." Then she
cried to her men, "Hold aloof from him and leave him to himself!";
then, going up to him she muttered certain magical words, whereupon his
arm became benumbed, his forearm relaxed and the sword dropped from his
hand. So they seized him and pinioned him, as he stood confounded,
stupefied. Then the Queen returned to her palace, and seating herself
on her seat of estate, bade her people withdraw and leave Gharib with
her. When they were alone, she said to him, " O dog of the Arabs, wilt
thou shiver my idol and slay my people?" He replied, "O accursed woman,
had he been a god he had defended himself!" Quoth she, "Stroke me and I
will forgive thee all thou hast done." But he replied, saying, "I will
do nought of this." And she said, "By the virtue of my faith, I will
torture thee with grievous torture!" So she took water and conjuring
over it, sprinkled it upon him and he became an ape. And she used to
feed and water and keep him in a closet, appointing one to care for
him; and in this plight he abode two years. Then she called him to her
one day and said to him, "Wilt thou hearken to me?" And he signed to
her with his head, "Yes." So she rejoiced and freed him from the
enchantment. Then she brought him food and he ate and toyed with her
and kissed her, so that she trusted in him. When it was night she lay
down and said to him, "Come, do thy business." He replied, " 'Tis
well;" and, mounting on her breast, seized her by the neck and brake
it, nor did he arise from her till life had left her. Then, seeing an
open cabinet, he went in and found there a sword of damascened[FN#73]
steel and a targe of Chinese iron; so he armed himself cap-à-pie and
waited till the day. As soon as it was morning, he went forth and stood
at the gate of the palace. When the Emirs came and would have gone in
to do their service to the Queen, they found Gharib standing at the
gate, clad in complete war-gear; and he said to them, "O folk, leave
the service of idols and worship the All-wise King, Creator of Night
and Day, the Lord of men, the Quickener of dry bones, for He made all
things and hath dominion over all." When the Kafirs heard this, they
ran at him, but he fell on them like a rending lion and charged through
them again and again, slaying of them much people;—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Kafirs fell upon Gharib, he slew of them much people; but, when the
night came, they overcame him by dint of numbers and would have taken
him by strenuous effort, when behold, there descended upon the Infidels
a thousand Marids, under the command of Zalzal, who plied them with the
keen sabre and made them drink the cup of destruction, whilst Allah
hurried their souls to Hell-fire, till but few were left of the people
of Jan Shah to tell the tale and the rest cried out, "Quarter!
Quarter!" and believed in the Requiting King, whom no one thing
diverteth from other thing, the Destroyer of the Jabábirah[FN#74] and
Exterminator of the Akásirah, Lord of this world and of the next. Then
Zalzal saluted Gharib and gave him joy of his safety; and Gharib said
to him, "How knowest thou of my case?" and he replied, "O my lord, my
father kept me in prison two years, after sending thee to the Valley of
Fire; then he released me, and I abode with him another year, till I
was restored to favour with him, when I slew him and his troops
submitted to me. I ruled them for a year's space till, one Night, I lay
down to sleep, having thee in thought, and saw thee in a dream,
fighting against the people of Jan Shah; wherefore I took these
thousand Marids and came to thee." And Gharib marvelled at this happy
conjuncture. Then he seized upon Jan Shah's treasures and those of the
slain and appointed a ruler over the city; after which the Marids took
up Gharib and the monies and he lay the same night in the Castle of
Crystal. He abode Zalzal's guest six months, when he desired to depart;
so Zalzal gave him rich presents and despatched three thousand Marids,
who brought the spoils of Karaj-city and added them to those of Jan
Shah. Then Zalzal loaded forty thousand Marids with the treasure and
himself taking up Gharib, flew with his host towards the city of
Isbanir al-Madain where they arrived at midnight. But as Gharib glanced
around he saw the walls invested on all sides by a conquering
army,[FN#75] as it were the surging sea, so he said to Zalzal, "O my
brother, what is the cause of this siege and whence came this army?"
Then he alighted on the terrace roof of his palace and cried out,
saying, "Ho, Star o' Morn! Ho, Mahdiyah!" Whereupon the twain started
up from sleep in amazement and said, "Who calleth us at this hour?"
Quoth he, " 'Tis I, your lord, Gharib, the Marvellous One of the deeds
wondrous." When the Princesses heard their lord's voice, they rejoiced
and so did the women and the eunuchs. Then Gharib went down to them and
they threw themselves upon him and lullilooed with cries of joy, so
that all the palace rang again and the Captains of the army awoke and
said, "What is to do?" So they made for the palace and asked the
eunuchs, "Hath one of the King's women given birth to a child?"; and
they answered, "No; but rejoice ye, for King Gharib hath returned to
you." So they rejoiced, and Gharib, after salams to the women came
forth amongst his comrades, who threw themselves upon him and kissed
his hands and feet, returning thanks to Almighty Allah and praising
Him. Then he sat down on his throne, with his officers sitting about
him, and questioned them of the beleaguering army. They replied, "O
King, these troops sat down before the city three days ago and there
are amongst them Jinns as well as men; but we know not what they want,
for we have had with them neither battle nor speech." And presently
they added, "The name of the commander of the besieging army is Murad
Shah and he hath with him an hundred thousand horse and three thousand
foot, besides two hundred tribesmen of the Jinn." Now the manner of his
coming was wondrous.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
to say her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the cause of this
army coming upon Isbanir city was wondrous. When the two men, whom
Sabur had charged to drown his daughter Fakhr Taj, let her go, bidding
her flee for her life, she went forth distracted, unknowing whither to
turn and saying, "Where is thine eye, O Gharib, that thou mayst see my
case and the misery I am in?"; and wandered on from country to country,
and valley to valley, till she came to a Wady abounding in trees and
streams, in whose midst stood a strong-based castle and a lofty-builded
as it were one of the pavilions of Paradise. So she betook herself
thither and entering the fortalice, found it hung and carpeted with
stuffs of silk and great plenty of gold and silver vessels; and therein
were an hundred beautiful damsels. When the maidens saw Fakhr Taj, they
came up to her and saluted her, deeming her of the virgins of the Jinn,
and asked her of her case. Quoth she, "I am daughter to the Persians'
King;" and told them all that had befallen her; which when they heard,
they wept over her and condoled with her and comforted her, saying, "Be
of good cheer and keep thine eyes cool and clear, for here shalt thou
have meat and drink and raiment, and we all are thy handmaids." She
called down blessings on them and they brought her food, of which she
ate till she was satisfied. Then quoth she to them, "Who is the owner
of this palace and lord over you girls?" and quoth they, "King Salsál,
son of Dal, is our master; he passeth a night here once in every month
and fareth in the morning to rule over the tribes of the Jann." So
Fakhr Taj took up her abode with them and after five days she gave
birth to a male child, as he were the moon. They cut his navel cord and
kohl'd his eyes then they named him Murad Shah, and he grew up in his
mother's lap. After a while came King Salsal, riding on a paper white
elephant, as he were a tower plastered with lime and attended by the
troops of the Jinn. He entered the palace, where the hundred damsels
met him and kissed ground before him, and amongst them Fakhr Taj. When
the King saw her, he looked at her and said to the others, "Who is
yonder damsel?"; and they replied, "She is the daughter of Sabur, King
of the Persians and Turks and Daylamites." Quoth he, "Who brought her
hither?" So they repeated to him her story; whereat he was moved to
pity for her and said to her, "Grieve not, but take patience till thy
son be grown a man, when I will go to the land of the Ajams and strike
off thy father's head from between his shoulders and seat thy son on
the throne in his stead." So she rose and kissed his hands and blessed
him. Then she abode in the castle and her son grew up and was reared
with the children of the King. They used to ride forth together
a-hunting and birding and he became skilled in the chase of wild beasts
and ravening lions and ate of their flesh, till his heart became harder
than the rock. When he reached the age of fifteen, his spirit waxed big
in him and he said to Fakhr Taj, "O my mamma, who is my papa?" She
replied, "O my son, Gharib, King of Irak, is thy father and I am the
King's daughter, of the Persians," and she told him her story. Quoth
he, "Did my grandfather indeed give orders to slay thee and my father
Gharib?"; and quoth she, "Yes." Whereupon he, "By the claim thou hast
on me for rearing me, I will assuredly go to thy father's city and cut
off his head and bring it into thy pre sence!"—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Murad Shah
son of Fakhr Taj thus bespake his mother, she rejoiced in his speech.
Now he used to go a-riding with two hundred Marids till he grew to
man's estate, when he and they fell to making raids and cutting off the
roads and they pushed their razzias farther till one day he attacked
the city of Shiraz and took it. Then he proceeded to the palace and cut
off the King's head, as he sat on his throne, and slew many of his
troops, whereupon the rest cried "Quarter! Quarter!" and kissed his
stirrups. Finding that they numbered ten thousand horse, he led them to
Balkh, where he slew the King of the city and put his men to the rout
and made himself master of the riches of the place. Thence he passed to
Núrayn,[FN#76] at the head of an army of thirty- thousand horse, and
the Lord of Nurayn came out to him, with treasure and tribute, and did
him homage. Then he went on to Samarcand of the Persians and took the
city, and after that to Akhlát[FN#77] and took that town also; nor was
there any city he came to but he captured it. Thus Murad Shah became
the head of a mighty host, and all the booty he made and spoils in the
sundry cities he divided among his soldiery, who loved him for his
valour and munificence. At last he came to Isbanir al-Madain and sat
down before it, saying, "Let us wait till the rest of my army come up,
when I will seize on my grandfather and solace my mother's heart by
smiting his neck in her presence." So he sent for her, and by reason of
this, there was no battle for three days, when Gharib and Zalzal
arrived with the forty thousand Marids, laden with treasure and
presents. They asked concerning the besiegers, but none could enlighten
them beyond saying that the host had been there encamped for three days
without a fight taking place. Presently came Fakhr Taj, and her son
Murad Shah embraced her saying, "Sit in thy tent till I bring thy
father to thee." And she sought succour for him of the Lord of the
Worlds, the Lord of the heavens and the Lord of the earths. Next
morning, as soon as it was day, Murad Shah mounted and rode forth, with
the two hundred Marids on his right hand and the Kings of men on his
left, whilst the kettle-drums beat to battle. When Gharib heard this,
he also took to horse and, calling his people to the combat, rode out,
with the jinn on his dexter hand and the men on his sinistral. Then
came forth Murad Shah, armed cap-à-pie and drave his charger right and
left, crying, "O folk, let none come forth to me but your King. If he
conquer me, he shall be lord of both armies, and if I conquer him, I
will slay him, as I have slain others." When Gharib heard his speech,
he said, "Avaunt, O dog of the Arabs!" And they charged at each other
and lunged with lances, till they broke, then hewed at each other with
swords, till the blades were notched; nor did they cease to advance and
retire and wheel and career, till the day was half spent and their
horses fell down under them, when they dismounted and gripped each
other. Then Murad Shah seizing Gharib lifted him up and strove to dash
him to the ground; but Gharib caught him by the ears and pulled him
with his might, till it seemed to the youth as if the heavens were
falling on the earth[FN#78] and he cried out, with his heart in his
mouth, saying, "I yield myself to thy mercy, O Knight of the Age!" So
Gharib bound him,—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

When it was the Six Hundred and Eightieth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Gharib
caught Murad Shah by the ears and well nigh tore them off he cried, "I
yield myself to thy mercy, O Knight of the Age!" So Gharib bound him,
and the Marids his comrades would have charged and rescued him, but
Gharib fell on them with a thousand Marids and was about to smite them
down, when they cried out "Quarter! Quarter!" and threw away their
arms. Then Gharib returned to his Shahmiyánah which was of green silk,
embroidered with red gold and set with pearls and gems; and, seating
himself on his throne, called for Murad Shah. So they brought him,
shuffling in his manacles and shackles. When the prisoner saw him, he
hung down his head for shame; and Gharib said to him, "O dog of the
Arabs, who art thou that thou shouldst ride forth and measure thyself
against kings?" Replied Murad Shah, "O my lord, reproach me not, for
indeed I have excuse." Quoth Gharib, "What manner of excuse hast
thou?"; And quoth he, "Know, O my lord, that I came out to avenge my
mother and my father on Sabur, King of the Persians; for he would have
slain them; but my mother escaped and I know not whether he killed my
father or not." When Gharib heard these words, he replied, "By Allah,
thou art indeed excusable! But who were thy father and mother and what
are their names?" Murad Shah said, "My sire was Gharib, King of
Al-Irak, and my mother Fakhr Taj, daughter of King Sabur of Persia."
When Gharib heard this, he gave a great cry and fell down fainting.
They sprinkled rose- water on him, till he came to himself, when he
said to Murad Shah, "Art thou indeed Gharib's son by Fakhr Taj?"; and
he replied, "Yes." Cried Gharib, "Thou art a champion, the son of a
champion. Loose my child!" And Sahim and Kaylajan went up to Murad Shah
and set him free. Then Gharib embraced his son and, seating him beside
himself, said to him, "Where is thy mother?" "She is with me in my
tent," answered Murad Shah; and Gharib said, "Bring her to me." So
Murad Shah mounted and repaired to his camp, where his comrades met
him, rejoicing in his safety, and asked him of his case; but he
answered, "This is no time for questions." Then he went in to his
mother and told her what had passed; whereat she was gladdened with
exceeding gladness: so he carried her to Gharib, and they two embraced
and rejoiced in each other. Then Fakhr Taj and Murad Shah islamised and
expounded The Faith to their troops, who all made profession with heart
and tongue. After this, Gharib sent for Sabur and his son Ward Shah,
and upbraided them for their evil dealing and expounded Al-Islam to
them; but they refused to profess wherefore he crucified them on the
gate of the city and the people decorated the town and held high
festival. Then Gharib crowned Murad Shah with the crown of the Chosroës
and made him King of the Persians and Turks and Medes; moreover, he
made his uncle Al-Damigh, King over Al-Irak, and all the peoples and
lands submitted themselves to Gharib. Then he abode in his kingship,
doing justice among his lieges, wherefore all the people loved him, and
he and his wives and comrades ceased not from all solace of life, till
there came to them the Destroyer of Delights and Sunderer of Societies,
and extolled be the perfection of Him whose glory endureth for ever and
aye and whose boons embrace all His creatures! This is every thing that
hath come down to us of the history of Gharib and Ajib. And Abdullah
bin Ma'amar al Kaysi hath thus related the tale of


I went one year on the pilgrimage to the Holy House of Allah, and when
I had accomplished my pilgrimage, I turned back for visitation of the
tomb of the Prophet, whom Allah bless and keep! One night, as I sat in
the garden,[FN#80] between the tomb and the pulpit, I heard a low
moaning in a soft voice; so I listened to it and it said,

"Have the doves that moan in the lotus-tree * Woke grief in thy
     heart and bred misery?
Or doth memory of maiden in beauty deckt * Cause this doubt in
     thee, this despondency?
O night, thou art longsome for love-sick sprite * Complaining of
     Love and its ecstacy:
Thou makest him wakeful, who burns with fire * Of a love, like
     the live coal's ardency.
The moon is witness my heart is held * By a moonlight brow of the
     brightest blee:
I reckt not to see me by Love ensnared * Till ensnared before I
     could reck or see."

Then the voice ceased and not knowing whence it came to me I abode
perplexed; but lo! it again took up its lament and recited,

"Came Rayya's phantom to grieve thy sight * In the thickest gloom
     of the black-haired Night!
And hath love of slumber deprived those eyes * And the
     phantom-vision vexed thy sprite?
I cried to the Night, whose glooms were like * Seas that surge
     and billow with might, with might:
'O Night, thou art longsome to lover who * Hath no aid nor help
     save the morning light!'
She replied, 'Complain not that I am long: * 'Tis love is the
     cause of thy longsome plight!'"

Now, at the first of the couplets, I sprang up and made for the quarter
whence the sound came, nor had the voice ended repeating them, ere I
was with the speaker and saw a youth of the utmost beauty, the hair of
whose side face had not sprouted and in whose cheeks tears had worn
twin trenches.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Abdullah bin
Ma'amar al-Kaysi thus continued:—So I sprang up and made for the
quarter whence the sound came, nor had the voice ended repeating the
verses, ere I was with the speaker and saw a youth on whose side face
the hair had not sprouted and in whose cheeks tears had worn twin
trenches. Quoth I to him, "Fair befal thee for a youth!"; and quoth he,
"And thee also! Who art thou?" I replied, "Abdullah bin Ma'amar
al-Kaysi;" and he said, "Dost thou want aught?" I rejoined, "I was
sitting in the garden and naught hath troubled me this night but thy
voice. With my life would I ransom thee! What aileth thee?" He said,
"Sit thee down." So I sat down and he continued, "I am Otbah bin
al-Hubáb bin al-Mundhir bin al-Jamúh the Ansári.[FN#81] I went out in
the morning to the Mosque Al-Ahzáb[FN#82] and occupied myself there
awhile with prayer-bows and prostrations, after which I withdrew apart,
to worship privily. But lo! up came women, as they were moons, walking
with a swaying gait, and surrounding a damsel of passing loveliness,
perfect in beauty and grace, who stopped before me and said, 'O Otbah,
what sayst thou of union with one who seeketh union with thee?' Then
she left me and went away; and since that time I have had no tidings of
her nor come upon any trace of her; and behold, I am distracted and do
naught but remove from place to place." Then he cried out and fell to
the ground fainting. When he came to himself, it was as if the damask
of his cheeks were dyed with safflower,[FN#83] and he recited these

"I see you with my heart from far countrie * Would Heaven you
     also me from far could see
My heart and eyes for you are sorrowing; * My soul with you
     abides and you with me.
I take no joy in life when you're unseen * Or Heaven or Garden of

Said I, "O Otbah, O son of my uncle, repent to thy Lord and drave
pardon for thy sin; for before thee is the terror of standing up to
Judgment." He replied, "Far be it from me so to do. I shall never leave
to love till the two mimosa-gatherers return."[FN#84] I abode with him
till daybreak, when I said to him, "Come let us go to the Mosque
Al-Ahzab." So we went thither and sat there, till we had prayed the
midday prayers, when lo! up came the women; but the damsel was not
among them. Quoth they to him, "O Otbah, what thinkest thou of her who
seeketh union with thee?" He said, "And what of her?"; and they
replied, "Her father hath taken her and departed to Al-Samawah."[FN#85]
I asked them the name of the damsel and they said, "She is called
Rayyá, daughter of Al-Ghitrí­f al-Sulami."[FN#86] Whereupon Otbah
raised his head and recited these verses,

"My friends, Rayya hath mounted soon as morning shone, * And to
Samawah's wilds her caravan is gone.
My friends, I've wept till I can weep no more, Oh, say, * Hath
any one a tear that I can take on loan."

Then said I to him, "O Otbah, I have brought with me great wealth,
wherewith I desire to succour generous men; and by Allah, I will lavish
it before thee,[FN#87] so thou mayst attain thy desire and more than
thy desire! Come with me to the assembly of the Ansaris." So we rose
and went, till we entered their assembly, when I salam'd to them and
they returned my greeting civilly. Then quoth I, "O assembly, what say
ye of Otbah and his father?": and they replied, "They are of the
princes of the Arabs." I continued, "Know that he is smitten with the
calamity of love and I desire your furtherance to Al-Samawah." And they
said, "To hear is to obey." So they mounted with us, the whole party,
and we rode till we drew near the place of the Banu Sulaym. Now when
Ghitrif heard of our being near, he hastened forth to meet us, saying,
"Long life to you, O nobles!"; whereto we replied, "And to thee also!
Behold we are thy guests." Quoth he, "Ye have lighted down at a most
hospitable abode and ample;" and alighting he cried out, "Ho, all ye
slaves, come down!" So they came down and spread skin-rugs and cushions
and slaughtered sheep and cattle; but we said, "We will not taste of
thy food, till thou have accomplished our need." He asked, "And what is
your need?"; and we answered, "We demand thy noble daughter in marriage
for Otbah bin Hubab bin Mundhir the illustrious and well born." "O my
brethren," said he, "she whom you demand is owner of herself, and I
will go in to her and tell her." So he rose in wrath[FN#88] and went in
to Rayya, who said to him, "O my papa, why do I see thee show anger?"
And he replied, saying, "Certain of the Ansaris have come upon me to
demand thy hand of me in marriage." Quoth she, "They are noble chiefs;
the Prophet, on whom be the choicest blessings and peace, intercedeth
for them with Allah. For whom among them do they ask me?" Quoth he,
"For a youth known as Otbah bin al-Hubab;" and she said, "I have heard
of Otbah that he performeth what he promiseth and findeth what he
seeketh." Ghitrif cried, "I swear that I will never marry thee to him;
no, never, for there hath been reported to me somewhat of thy converse
with him." Said she, "What was that? But in any case, I swear that the
Ansaris shall not be uncivilly rejected; wherefore do thou offer them a
fair excuse." "How so?" "Make the dowry heavy to them and they will
desist." "Thou sayst well," said he, and going out in haste, told the
Ansaris, "The damsel of the tribe[FN#89] consenteth; but she requireth
a dowry worthy herself. Who engageth for this?" "I," answered I. Then
said he, "I require for her a thousand bracelets of red gold and five
thousand dirhams of the coinage of Hajar[FN#90] and a hundred pieces of
woollen cloth and striped stuffs[FN#91] of Al-Yaman and five bladders
of ambergris." Said I, "Thou shalt have that much; dost thou consent?";
and he said, "I do consent." So I despatched to Al-Medinah the
Illumined[FN#92] a party of the Ansaris, who brought all for which I
had become surety; whereupon they slaughtered sheep and cattle and the
folk assembled to eat of the food. We abode thus forty days when
Ghitrif said to us, "Take your bride." So we sat her in a
dromedary-litter and her father equipped her with thirty camel-loads of
things of price; after which we farewelled him and journeyed till we
came within a day's journey of Al-Medinah the Illumined, when there
fell upon us horsemen, with intent to plunder, and methinks they were
of the Banu Sulaym, Otbah drove at them and slew of them much people,
but fell back, wounded by a lance-thrust, and presently dropped to the
earth. Then there came to us succour of the country people, who drove
away the highwaymen; but Otbah's days were ended. So we said, "Alas for
Otbah, oh!;" and the damsel hearing it cast herself down from the camel
and throwing herself upon him, cried out grievously and repeated these

"Patient I seemed, yet Patience shown by me * Was but
     self-guiling till thy sight I see:
Had my soul done as due my life had gone, * Had fled before
     mankind forestalling thee:
Then, after me and thee none shall to friend * Be just, nor any
     soul with soul agree."

Then she sobbed a single sob and gave up the ghost. We dug one grave
for them and laid them in the earth, and I returned to the dwellings of
my people, where I abode seven years. Then I betook me again to
Al-Hijaz and entering Al-Medinah the Illumined for pious visitation
said in my mind, "By Allah, I will go again to Otbah's tomb!" So I
repaired thither, and, behold, over the grave was a tall tree, on which
hung fillets of red and green and yellow stuffs.[FN#93] So I asked the
people of the place, "How be this tree called?"; and they answered,
"The tree of the Bride and the Bridegroom." I abode by the tomb a day
and a night, then went my way; and this is all I know of Otbah.
Almighty Allah have mercy upon him! And they also tell this tale of


It is related that Hind, daughter of Al-Nu'man, was the fairest woman
of her day, and her beauty and loveliness were reported to Al-Hajjaj,
who sought her in marriage and lavished much treasure on her. So he
took her to wife, engaging to give her a dowry of two hundred thousand
dirhams in case of divorce, and when he went into her, he abode with
her a long time. One day after this, he went in to her and found her
looking at her face in the mirror and saying,

"Hind is an Arab filly purest bred, * Which hath been covered by
     a mongrel mule;
An colt of horse she throw by Allah! well; * If mule, it but
     results from mulish rule."[FN#95]

When Al-Hajjaj heard this, he turned back and went his way, unseen of
Hind; and, being minded to put her away, he sent Abdullah bin Tahir to
her, to divorce her. So Abdullah went in to her and said to her,
"Al-Hajjaj Abu Mohammed saith to thee: 'Here be the two hundred
thousand dirhams of thy contingent dowry he oweth thee'; and he hath
deputed me to divorce thee." Replied she, "O Ibn Tahir, I gladly agree
to this; for know that I never for one day took pleasure in him; so, if
we separate, by Allah, I shall never regret him, and these two hundred
thousand dirhams I give to thee as a reward for the glad tidings thou
bringest me of my release from yonder dog of the Thakafites."[FN#96]
After this, the Commander of the Faithful, Abd al-Malik bin Marwan,
heard of her beauty and loveliness, her stature and symmetry, her sweet
speech and the amorous grace of her glances and sent to her, to ask her
in marriage;—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Prince of
True Believers, Abd al-Malik bin Marwan, hearing of the lady's beauty
and loveliness, sent to ask her in marriage; and she wrote him in reply
a letter, in which, after the glorification of Allah and benediction of
His Prophet, she said, "But afterwards. Know, O Commander of the
Faithful, that the dog hath lapped in the vase." When the Caliph read
her answer, he laughed and wrote to her, citing his saying (whom may
Allah bless and keep!) "If a dog lap in the vessel of one of you, let
him wash seven times, once thereof with earth," and adding, "Wash the
affront from the place of use."[FN#97] With this she could not gainsay
him; so she replied to him, saying (after praise and blessing), "O
Commander of the Faithful I will not consent save on one condition, and
if thou ask me what it is, I reply that Al-Hajjaj lead my camel to the
town where thou tarriest barefoot and clad as he is."[FN#98] When the
Caliph read her letter, he laughed long and loudly and sent to
Al-Hajjaj, bidding him to do as she wished. He dared not disobey the
order, so he submitted to the Caliph's commandment and sent to Hind,
telling her to make ready for the journey. So she made ready and
mounted her litter, when Al-Hajjaj with his suite came up to Hind's
door and as she mounted and her damsels and eunuchs rode around her, he
dismounted and took the halter of her camel and led it along,
barefooted, whilst she and her damsels and tirewomen laughed and jeered
at him and made mock of him. Then she said to her tirewoman, "Draw back
the curtain of the litter;" and she drew back the curtain, till Hind
was face to face with Al-Hajjaj, whereupon she laughed at him and he
improvised this couplet,

"Though now thou jeer, O Hind, how many a night * I've left thee
wakeful sighing for the light."

And she answered him with these two,

"We reck not, an our life escape from bane, * For waste of wealth
     and gear that went in vain:
Money may be regained and rank re-won * When one is cured of
     malady and pain."

And she ceased not to laugh at him and make sport of him, till they
drew near the city of the Caliph, when she threw down a dinar with her
own hand and said to Al-Hajjaj, "O camel-driver, I have dropped a
dirham; look for it and give it to me." So he looked and seeing naught
but the dinar, said, "This is a dinar." She replied, "Nay, 'tis a
dirham." But he said, "This is a dinar." Then quoth she, "Praised be
Allah who hath given us in exchange for a paltry dirham a dinar! Give
it us." And Al-Hajjaj was abashed at this. Then he carried her to the
palace of the Commander of the Faithful, and she went in to him and
became his favourite.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that men also tell
a tale anent


There lived once, in the days of the Caliph Sulayman bin Abd
al-Malik[FN#100] a man of the Banu Asad, by name Khuzaymah bin Bishr,
who was famed for bounty and abundant wealth and excellence and
righteous dealing with his brethren. He continued thus till times grew
strait with him and he became in need of the aid of those Moslem
brethren on whom he had lavished favour and kindness. So they succoured
him a while and then grew weary of him, which when he saw, he went in
to his wife who was the daughter of his father's brother, and said to
her, "O my cousin, I find a change in my brethren; wherefore I am
resolved to keep my house till death come to me." So he shut his door
and abode in his home, living on that which he had by him, till it was
spent and he knew not what to do. Now Ikrimah al-Raba'í­, surnamed
Al-Fayyáz, governor of Mesopotamia,[FN#101] had known him, and one day,
as he sat in his Audience-chamber, mention was made of Khuzaymah,
whereupon quoth Ikrimah, "How is it with him?" And quoth they, "He is
in a plight past telling, and hath shut his door and keepeth the
house." Ikrimah rejoined, "This cometh but of his excessive generosity:
but how is it that Khuzaymah bin Bishr findeth nor comforter nor
requiter?" And they replied, "He hath found naught of this." So when it
was night, Ikrimah took four thousand dinars and laid them in one
purse; then, bidding saddle his beast, he mounted and rode privily to
Khuzaymah's house, attended only by one of his pages, carrying the
money. When he came to the door, he alighted and taking the purse from
the page made him withdraw afar off; after which he went up to the door
and knocked. Khuzaymah came out to him, and he gave him the purse,
saying, "Better thy case herewith." He took it and finding it heavy put
it from his hand and laying hold of the bridle of Ikrimah's horse,
asked, "Who art thou? My soul be thy ransom!" Answered Ikrimah, "O man
I come not to thee at a time like this desiring that thou shouldst know
me." Khuzaymah rejoined, "I will not let thee go till thou make thyself
known to me," whereupon Ikrimah said "I am hight Jabir Atharat
al-Kiram."[FN#102] Quoth Khuzaymah, "Tell me more." But Ikrimah cried,
"No," and fared forth, whilst Khuzaymah went in to his cousin and said
to her, "Rejoice for Allah hath sent us speedy relief and wealth; if
these be but dirhams, yet are they many. Arise and light the lamp." She
said, "I have not wherewithal to light it." So he spent the night
handling the coins and felt by their roughness that they were dinars,
but could not credit it. Meanwhile Ikrimah returned to his own house
and found that his wife had missed him and asked for him, and when they
told her of his riding forth, she misdoubted of him, and said to him,
"Verily the Wali of Al-Jazirah rideth not abroad after such an hour of
the night, unattended and secretly, save to a wife or a mistress." He
answered, "Allah knoweth that I went not forth to either of these."
"Tell me then wherefore thou wentest forth?" "I went not forth at this
hour save that none should know it." "I must needs be told." "Wilt thou
keep the matter secret, if I tell thee?" "Yes!" So he told her the
state of the case, adding, "Wilt thou have me swear to thee?" Answered
she, "No, no, my heart is set at ease and trusteth in that which thou
hast told me." As for Khuzaymah, soon as it was day he made his peace
with his creditors and set his affairs in order; after which he got him
ready and set out for the Court of Sulayman bin Abd al-Malik, who was
then sojourning in Palestine.[FN#103] When he came to the royal gate,
he sought admission of the chamberlain, who went in and told the Caliph
of his presence. Now he was renowned for his beneficence and Sulayman
knew of him; so he bade admit him. When he entered, he saluted the
Caliph after the usual fashion of saluting[FN#104] and the King asked,
"O Khuzaymah, what hath kept thee so long from us?" Answered he, "Evil
case," and quoth the Caliph, "What hindered thee from having recourse
to us?" Quoth he, "My infirmity, O Commander of the Faithful!" "And
why," said Sulayman, "comest thou to us now?" Khuzaymah replied, "Know,
O Commander of the Faithful, that I was sitting one night late in my
house, when a man knocked at the door and did thus and thus;" and he
went on to tell him of all that had passed between Ikrimah and himself
from first to last. Sulayman asked, "Knowest thou the man?" and
Khuzaymah answered, "No, O Commander of the Faithful, he was
reserved[FN#105] and would say naught save, 'I am hight Jabir Atharat
al-Kiram.'" When Sulayman heard this, his heart burned within him for
anxiety to discover the man, and he said, "If we knew him, truly we
would requite him for his generosity." Then he bound for Khuzaymah a
banner[FN#106] and made him Governor of Mesopotamia, in the stead of
Ikrimah Al-Fayyaz; and he set out for Al-Jazirah. When he drew near the
city, Ikrimah and the people of the place came forth to meet him and
they saluted each other and went on into the town, where Khuzaymah took
up his lodging in the Government-house and bade take security for
Ikrimah and that he should be called to account.[FN#107] So an account
was taken against him and he was found to be in default for much money;
whereupon Khuzaymah required of him payment, but he said, "I have no
means of paying aught." Quoth Khuzaymah, "It must be paid;" and quoth
Ikrimah, "I have it not; do what thou hast to do." So Khuzaymah ordered
him to gaol.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Khuzaymah, having
ordered the imprisonment of Ikrimah Al-Fayyaz, sent to him again to
demand payment of the debt; but he replied, "I am not of those who
preserve their wealth at the expense of their honour; do what thou
wilt." Then Khuzaymah bade load him with irons and kept him in prison a
month or more, till confinement began to tell upon him and he became
wasted. After this, tidings of his plight travelled to the daughter of
his uncle who was troubled with sore concern thereat and, sending for a
freedwoman of hers, a woman of abundant judgment, and experience, said
to her, "Go forthwith to the Emir Khuzaymah's gate and say, 'I have a
counsel for the Emir.' If they ask what it is, add, 'I will not tell it
save to himself'; and when thou enterest to him, beg to see him in
private and when private ask him, 'What be this deed thou hast done?
Hath Jabir Atharat al-Kiram deserved of thee no better reward than to
be cast into strait prison and hard bond of irons?'" The woman did as
she was bid, and when Khuzaymah heard her words, he cried out at the
top of his voice, saying, "Alas, the baseness of it! Was it indeed he?"
And she answered, "Yes." Then he bade saddle his beast forthwith and,
summoning the honourable men of the city, repaired with them to the
prison and opening the door, went in with them to Ikrimah, whom they
found sitting in evil case, worn out and wasted with blows and misery.
When he looked at Khuzaymah, he was abashed and hung his head; but the
other bent down to him and kissed his face; whereupon he raised his
head and asked, "What maketh thee do this?" Answered Khuzaymah, "The
generosity of thy dealing and the vileness of my requital." And Ikrimah
said, "Allah pardon us and thee!" Then Khuzaymah commanded the jailor
to strike off Ikrimah's fetters and clap them on his own feet; but
Ikrimah said, "What is this thou wilt do?" Quoth the other, "I have a
mind to suffer what thou hast suffered." Quoth Ikrimah, "I conjure thee
by Allah, do not so!" Then they went out together and returned to
Khuzaymah's house, where Ikrimah would have farewelled him and wended
his way; but he forbade him and Ikrimah said, "What is thy will of me?"
Replied Khuzaymah, "I wish to change thy case, for my shame before the
daughter of thine uncle is yet greater than my shame before thee." So
he bade clear the bath and entering with Ikrimah, served him there in
person and when they went forth he bestowed on him a splendid robe of
honour and mounted him and gave him much money. Then he carried him to
his house and asked his leave to make his excuses to his wife and
obtained her pardon. After this he besought him to accompany him to the
Caliph who was then abiding at Ramlah[FN#108] and he agreed. So they
journeyed thither, and when they reached the royal quarters the
chamberlain went in and acquainted the Caliph Sulayman bin Abd al-Malik
with Khuzaymah's arrival, whereat he was troubled and said, "What! is
the Governor of Mesopotamia come without our command? This can be only
on some grave occasion." Then he bade admit him and said, before
saluting him, "What is behind thee, O Khuzaymah?" Replied he, "Good, O
Commander of the Faithful." Asked Sulayman, "What bringeth thee?"; and
he answered, saying, "I have discovered Jabir Atharat al-Kiram and
thought to gladden thee with him, knowing thine excessive desire to
know him and thy longing to see him." "Who is he?" quoth the Caliph and
quoth Khuzaymah, "He is Ikrimah Al-Fayyaz." So Sulayman called for
Ikrimah, who approached and saluted him as Caliph; and the King
welcomed him and making him draw near his sitting-place, said to him,
"O Ikrimah, thy good deed to him hath brought thee naught but evil,"
adding, "Now write down in a note thy needs each and every, and that
which thou desirest." He did so and the Caliph commanded to do all that
he required and that forthwith. Moreover he gave him ten thousand
dinars more than he asked for and twenty chests of clothes over and
above that he sought, and calling for a spear, bound him a banner and
made him Governor over Armenia and Azarbiján[FN#109] and Mesopotamia,
saying, "Khuzaymah's case is in thy hands, an thou wilt, continue him
in his office, and if thou wilt, degrade him." And Ikrimah said, "Nay,
but I restore him to his office, O Commander of the Faithful." Then
they went out from him and ceased not to be Governors under Sulayman
bin Abd al-Malik all the days of his Caliphate. And they also tell a
tale of


There lived in the reign of the Caliph Hishám, [FN#110] son of Abd
al-Malik, a man called Yúnus the Scribe well-known to the general, and
he set out one day on a journey to Damascus, having with him a
slave-girl of surpassing beauty and loveliness, whom he had taught all
that was needful to her and whose price was an hundred thousand
dirhams. When they drew near to Damascus, the caravan halted by the
side of a lake and Yunus went down to a quiet place with his damsel and
took out some victual he had with him and a leather bottle of wine. As
he sat at meat, behold, came up a young man of goodly favour and
dignified presence, mounted on a sorrel horse and followed by two
eunuchs, and said to him, "Wilt thou accept me to guest?" "Yes,"
replied Yunus. So the stranger alighted and said, "Give me to drink of
thy wine." Yunus gave him to drink and he said, "If it please thee,
sing us a song." So Yunus sang this couplet extempore,

"She joineth charms were never seen conjoined in mortal dress: * And
for her love she makes me love my tears and wakefulness."

At which the stranger rejoiced with exceeding joy and Yunus gave him to
drink again and again, till the wine got the better of him and he said,
"Bid thy slave-girl sing." So she improvised this couplet,

"A houri, by whose charms my heart is moved to sore distress: *
     Nor wand of tree nor sun nor moon her rivals I confess!"

The stranger was overjoyed with this and they sat drinking till
nightfall, when they prayed the evening-prayer and the youth said to
Yunus, "What bringeth thee to our city?" He replied, "Quest of
wherewithal to pay my debts and better my case." Quoth the other, "Wilt
thou sell me this slave-girl for thirty thousand dirhams?" Whereto
quoth Yunus, "I must have more than that." He asked, "Will forty
thousand content thee?"; but Yunus answered, "That would only settle my
debts, and I should remain empty-handed." Rejoined the stranger, "We
will take her of thee at fifty thousand dirhams[FN#111] and give thee a
suit of clothes to boot and the expenses of thy journey and make thee a
sharer in my condition as long as thou livest." Cried Yunus, "I sell
her to thee on these terms." Then said the young man, "Wilt thou trust
me to bring thee the money to-morrow and let me take her with me, or
shall she abide with thee till I pay down her price?" Whereto wine and
shame and awe of the stranger led Yunus to reply, "I will trust thee;
take her and Allah bless thee in her!" Whereupon the visitor bade one
of his pages sit her before him on his beast, and mounting his own
horse, farewelled of Yunus and rode away out of sight. Hardly had he
left him, when the seller bethought himself and knew that he had erred
in selling her and said to himself, "What have I done? I have delivered
my slave- girl to a man with whom I am unacquainted, neither know I who
he is; and grant that I were acquainted with him, how am I to get at
him?" So he abode in thought till the morning, when he prayed the
dawn-prayers and his companions entered Damascus, whilst he sat,
perplexed and wotting not what to do, till the sun scorched him and it
irked him to abide there. He thought to enter the city, but said in his
mind, "If I enter Damascus, I cannot be sure but that the messenger
will come and find me not, in which case I shall have sinned against
myself a second sin." Accordingly he sat down in the shade of a wall
that was there, and towards the wane of day, up came one of the eunuchs
whom he had seen with the young man, whereat great joy possessed Yunus
and he said in himself, "I know not that aught hath ever given me more
delight than the sight of this castrato." When the eunuch reached him,
he said to him, "O my lord, we have kept thee long waiting"; but Yunus
disclosed nothing to him of the torments of anxiety he had suffered.
Then quoth the castrato, "Knowest thou the man who bought the girl of
thee?"; and quoth Yunus, "No," to which the other rejoined, "'Twas
Walid bin Sahl,[FN#112] the Heir Apparent." And Yunus was silent. Then
said the eunuch, "Ride," and made him mount a horse he had with him and
they rode till they came to a mansion, where they dismounted and
entered. Here Yunus found the damsel, who sprang up at his sight and
saluted him. He asked her how she had fared with him who had bought her
and she answered, "He lodged me in this apartment and ordered me all I
needed." Then he sat with her awhile, till suddenly one of the servants
of the houseowner came in and bade him rise and follow him. So he
followed the man into the presence of his master and found him
yesternight's guest, whom he saw seated on his couch and who said to
him, "Who art thou?" "I am Yunus the Scribe." "Welcome to thee, O
Yunus! by Allah, I have long wished to look on thee; for I have heard
of thy report. How didst thou pass the night?" "Well, may Almighty
Allah advance thee!" "Peradventure thou repentedest thee of that thou
didst yesterday and saidst to thyself: I have delivered my slave-girl
to a man with who I am not acquainted, neither know I his name nor
whence he cometh?" "Allah forbid, O Emir, that I should repent over
her! Had I made gift of her to the Prince, she were the least of the
gifts that are given unto him,"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Yunus
the Scribe said to Walid, "Allah forbid I should repent over her! Had I
made gift of her to the Prince, she were the least of gifts that are
given to him, nor indeed is she worthy of his rank," Walid rejoined,
"By Allah, but I repented me of having carried her away from thee and
said to myself, 'This man is a stranger and knoweth me not, and I have
taken him by surprise and acted inconsiderately by him, in my haste to
take the damsel!' Dost thou recall what passed between us?" Quoth
Yunus, "Yes!" and quoth Walid, "Dost thou sell this damsel to me for
fifty thousand dirhams?" And Yunus said, "I do." Then the Prince called
to one of his servants to bring him fifty thousand dirhams and a
thousand and five hundred dinars to boot, and gave them all to Yunus,
saying, "Take the slave's price: the thousand dinars are for thy fair
opinion of us and the five hundred are for thy viaticum and for what
present thou shalt buy for thy people. Art thou content?" "I am
content," answered Yunus and kissed his hands, saying, "By Allah, thou
hast filled my eyes and my hands and my heart!" Quoth Walid, "By Allah,
I have as yet had no privacy of her nor have I taken my fill of her
singing. Bring her to me!" So she came and he bade her sit, then said
to her, "Sing." And she sang these verses,

"O thou who dost comprise all Beauty's boons! * O sweet of
     nature, fain of coquetry!
In Turks and Arabs many beauties dwell; * But, O my fawn, in none
     thy charms I see.
Turn to thy lover, O my fair, and keep * Thy word, though but in
     visioned phantasy:
Shame and disgrace are lawful for thy sake * And wakeful nights
     full fill with joy and glee:
I'm not the first for thee who fared distraught; * Slain by thy
     love how many a many be!
I am content with thee for worldly share * Dearer than life and
     good art thou to me!"

When he heard this, he was delighted exceedingly and praised Yunus for
his excellent teaching of her and her fair education. Then he bade his
servants bring him a roadster with saddle and housings for his riding,
and a mule to carry his gear, and said to him, "O Yunus, when it shall
reach thee that command hath come to me, do thou join me; and, by
Allah, I will fill thy hands with good and advance thee to honour and
make thee rich as long as thou livest!" So Yunus said, "I took his
goods and went my ways; and when Walid succeeded to the Caliphate, I
repaired to him; and by Allah, he kept his promise and entreated me
with high honour and munificence. Then I abode with him in all content
of case and rise of rank and mine affairs prospered and my wealth
increased and goods and farms became mine, such as sufficed me and will
suffice my heirs after me; nor did I cease to abide with Walid, till he
was slain, the mercy of Almighty Allah be on him!" And men tell a tale


The Caliph Harun al-Rashid was walking one day with Ja'afar the
Barmecide, when he espied a company of girls drawing water and went up
to them, having a mind to drink. As he drew near, one of them turned to
her fellows and improvised these lines,

"Thy phantom bid thou fleet, and fly * Far from the couch whereon
     I lie;
So I may rest and quench the fire, * Bonfire in bones aye flaming
My love-sick form Love's restless palm * Rolls o'er the rug
     whereon I sigh:
How 'tis with me thou wottest well * How long, then, union wilt

The Caliph marvelled at her elegance and eloquence.—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Caliph,
hearing the girl's verses, marvelled at her elegance and eloquence, and
said to her, "O daughter of nobles, are these thine own or a
quotation?" Replied she, "They are my very own," and he rejoined, "An
thou say sooth keep the sense and change the rhyme." So she said,

"Bid thou thy phantom distance keep * And quit this couch the
     while I sleep;
So I may rest and quench the flames * Through all my body rageful
In love-sick one, whom passion's palms * Roll o'er the bed where
     grief I weep;
How 'tis with me thou wottest well; * All but thy union hold I

Quoth the Caliph, "This also is stolen"; and quoth she, "Nay, 'tis my
very own." He said, "If it be indeed thine own, change the rhyme again
and keep the sense." So she recited the following,

"Unto thy phantom deal behest * To shun my couch the while I
So I repose and quench the fire * That burns what lieth in my
My weary form Love's restless palm * Rolls o'er with boon of
     sleep unblest.
How 'tis with me thou wottest well * When union's bought 'tis
     haply best!"

Quoth Al-Rashid, "This too is stolen"; and quoth she, "Not, so, 'tis
mine." He said, "If thy words be true change the rhyme once more." And
she recited,

"Drive off the ghost that ever shows * Beside my couch when I'd
 So I may rest and quench the fire * Beneath my ribs e'er flames
     and glows
 In love-sick one, whom passion's palms * Roll o'er the couch
     where weeping flows.
How 'tis with me thou wottest well * Will union come as union

Then said the Caliph, "Of what part of this camp art thou?"; and she
replied, "Of its middle in dwelling and of its highest in
tentpoles."[FN#113] Wherefore he knew that she was the daughter of the
tribal chief. "And thou," quoth she, "of what art thou among the
guardians of the horses?"; and quoth he, "Of the highest in tree and of
the ripest in fruit." "Allah protect thee, O Commander of the
Faithful!" said she, and kissing ground called down blessings on him.
Then she went away with the maidens of the Arabs, and the Caliph said
to Ja'afar, "There is no help for it but I take her to wife." So
Ja'afar repaired to her father and said to him, "The Commander of the
Faithful hath a mind to thy daughter." He replied, "With love and
goodwill, she is a gift as a handmaid to His Highness our Lord the
Commander of the Faithful." So he equipped her and carried her to the
Caliph, who took her to wife and went in to her, and she became of the
dearest of his women to him. Furthermore, he bestowed on her father
largesse such as succoured him among Arabs, till he was transported to
the mercy of Almighty Allah. The Caliph, hearing of his death, went in
to her greatly troubled; and, when she saw him looking afflicted, she
entered her chamber and doffing all that was upon her of rich raiment,
donned mourning apparel and raised lament for her father. It was said
to her, "What is the reason of this?"; and she replied, "My father is
dead." So they repaired to the Caliph and told him and he rose and
going in to her, asked her who had informed her of her father's death;
and she answered "It was thy face, O Commander of the Faithful!" Said
he, "How so?"; and she said, "Since I have been with thee, I never saw
thee on such wise till this time, and there was none for whom I feared
save my father, by reason of his great age; but may thy head live, O
Commander of the Faithful!" The Caliph's eyes filled with tears and he
condoled with her; but she ceased not to mourn for her father, till she
followed him—Allah have mercy on the twain! And a tale is also told of


The Commander of the Faithful Harun Al-Rashid was exceeding restless
one night and rising from his bed, paced from chamber to chamber, but
could not compose himself to sleep. As soon as it was day, he said,
"Fetch me Al-Asma'i!"[FN#114] So the eunuch went out and told the
doorkeepers; these sent for the poet and when he came, informed the
Caliph who bade admit him and said to him, "O Asma'i, I wish thee to
tell me the best thou hast heard of stories of women and their verses."
Answered Al-Asma'i, "Hearkening and obedience! I have heard great store
of women's verses; but none pleased me save three sets of couplets I
once heard from three girls."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Al- Asma'i
said to the Prince of True Believers, "Verily I have heard much, but
nothing pleased me save three sets of couplets improvised by as many
girls." Quoth the Caliph, "Tell me of them," and quoth he, "Know then,
O Commander of the Faithful, that I once abode in Bassorah, and one
day, as I was walking, the heat was sore upon me and I sought for a
siesta-place but found none. However by looking right and left I came
upon a porch swept and sprinkled, at the upper end whereof was a wooden
bench under an open lattice-window, whence exhaled a scent of musk. I
entered the porch and sitting down on the bench, would have stretcht me
at full length when I heard from within a girl's sweet voice talking
and saying, 'O my sisters, we are here seated to spend our day in
friendly converse; so come, let us each put down an hundred dinars and
recite a line of verse; and whoso extemporiseth the goodliest and
sweetest line, the three hundred dinars shall be hers.' 'With love and
gladness,' said the others; and the eldest recited the first couplet
which is this,

'Would he come to my bed during sleep 'twere delight * But a visit on
wake were delightsomer sight!'

Quoth the second,

'Naught came to salute me in sleep save his shade * But 'welcome, fair
welcome,' I cried to the spright!'

Then said the youngest,

'My soul and my folk I engage for the youth * Musk-scented I see in my
bed every night!'

Quoth I, 'An she be fair as her verse hath grace, the thing is complete
in every case.' Then I came down from my bench[FN#115] and was about to
go away, when behold, the door opened and out came a slave-girl, who
said to me, 'Sit, O Shaykh!' So I climbed up and sat down again when
she gave me a scroll, wherein was written, in characters of the utmost
beauty, with straight Alifs,[FN#116] big-bellied Hás and rounded Waws,
the following, 'We would have the Shaykh (Allah lengthen his days!) to
know that we are three maidens, sisters, sitting in friendly converse,
who have laid down each an hundred dinars, conditioning that whoso
recite the goodliest and sweetest couplet shall have the whole three
hundred dinars; and we appoint thee umpire between us: so decide as
thou seest best, and the Peace be on thee! Quoth I to the girl, 'Here
to me inkcase and paper.' So she went in and, returning after a little,
brought me a silvered inkcase and gilded pens[FN#117] with which I
wrote these couplets,

They talked of three beauties whose converse was quite * Like the
     talk of a man with experience dight:
Three maidens who borrowed the bloom of the dawn       * Making
     hearts of their lovers in sorriest plight.
They were hidden from eyes of the prier and spy        * Who
     slept and their modesty mote not affright;
So they opened whatever lay hid in their hearts        * And in
     frolicsome fun began verse to indite.
Quoth one fair coquette with her amorous grace         * Whose
     teeth for the sweet of her speech flashèd bright:—
Would he come to my bed during sleep 'twere delight    * But a
     visit on wake were delightsomer sight!
When she ended, her verse by her smiling was gilt:     * Then
     the second 'gan singing as nightingale might:—
Naught came to salute me in sleep save his shade       * But
     'welcome, fair welcome,' I cried to the spright!
But the third I preferred for she said in reply,       * With
     expression most apposite, exquisite:—
My soul and my folk I engage for the youth             * Musk-
     scented I see in my bed every night!
So when I considered their words to decide,            * And not
     make me the mock of the cynical wight;
I pronounced for the youngest, declaring her verse     * Of all
     verses be that which is nearest the right.'

Then I gave scroll to the slave-girl, who went upstairs with it, and
behold, I heard a noise of dancing and clapping of hands and Doomsday
astir. Quoth I to myself, ''Tis no time of me to stay here.' So I came
down from the platform and was about to go away, when the damsel cried
out to me, 'Sit down, O Asma'i!' Asked I, 'Who gave thee to know that I
was Al-Asma'i?' and she answered, 'O Shaykh, an thy name be unknown to
us, thy poetry is not!' So I sat down again and suddently the door
opened and out came the first damsel, with a dish of fruits and another
of sweetmeats. I ate of both and praised their fashion and would have
ganged my gait; but she cried out, 'Sit down, O Asma'i!' Wherewith I
raised my eyes to her and saw a rosy palm in a saffron sleeve, meseemed
it was the full moon rising splendid in the cloudy East. Then she threw
me a purse containing three hundred dinars and said to me, 'This is
mine and I give it to thee by way of douceur in requital of thy
judgment.'" Quoth the Caliph, "Why didst thou decide for the youngest?"
and quoth Al-Asma'i, "O Commander of the Faithful, whose life Allah
prolong! the eldest said, 'I should delight in him, if he visited my
couch in sleep.' Now this is restricted and dependent upon a condition
which may befal or may not befal; whilst, for the second, an image of
dreams came to her in sleep, and she saluted it; but the youngest's
couplet said that she actually lay with her lover and smelt his breath
sweeter than musk and she engaged her soul and her folk for him, which
she had not done, were he not dearer to her than her sprite." Said the
Caliph, "Thou didst well, O Asma'i." and gave him other three hundred
ducats in payment of his story. And I have heard a tale concerning


Quoth Abu Ishak Ibrahim al-Mausili:—I asked Al-Rashid once to give me a
day's leave that I might be private with the people of my household and
my brethren, and he gave me leave for Saturday the Sabbath. So I went
home and betook myself to making ready meat and drink and other
necessaires and bade the doorkeepers shut the doors and let none come
in to me. However, presently, as I sat in my sitting-chamber, with my
women who were looking after my wants, behold, there appeared an old
man of comely and reverend aspect,[FN#119] clad in white clothes and a
shirt of fine stuff with a doctor's turband on his head and a silver-
handled staff in his hand, and the house and porch were full of the
perfumes wherewith he was scented. I was greatly vexed at his coming in
to me and thought to turn away the doorkeepers; but he saluted me after
the goodliest fashion and I returned his greeting and bade him be
seated. So he sat down and began entertaining me with stories of the
Arabs and their verses, till my anger left me and methought my servants
had sought to pleasure me by admitting a man of such good breeding and
fine culture. Then I asked him, "Art thou for meat?"; and he answered,
"I have no need of it." "And for drink?" quoth I, and quoth he, "That
is as thou wilt." So I drank off a pint of wine and poured him out the
like. Then said he, "O Abu Ishak, wilt thou sing us somewhat, so we may
hear of thine art that wherein thou excellest high and low?" His words
angered me; but I swallowed my anger and taking the lute played and
sang. "Well done, O Abu Ishak!"[FN#120] said he; whereat my wrath
redoubled and I said to myself, "Is it not enough that he should
intrude upon me, without my leave, and importune me thus, but he must
call me by name, as though he knew not the right way to address me?"
Quoth he, "An thou wilt sing something more we will requite thee." I
dissembled my annoyance and took the lute and sang again, taking pains
with what I sang and rising thereto altogether, in consideration of his
saying, "We will requite thee."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Shaykh said to Abu Ishak, "If thou wilt sing something more we will
requite thee," I dissembled my annoyance (continued Ibrahim) and,
taking the lute, sang again with great attention to my singing and
rising altogether thereto, in consideration of his saying, "We will
requite thee." He was delighted, and cried, "Well done, O my lord!";
presently adding, "Dost thou give me leave to sing?" "As thou wilt,"
answered I, deeming him weak of wit, in that he should think to sing in
my presence, after that which he had heard from me. So he took the lute
and swept the strings, and by Allah, I fancied they spoke in Arabic
tongue, with a sweet and liquid and murmurous voice; then he began and
sang these couplets,

"I bear a hurt heart, who will sell me for this * A heart whole
     and free from all canker and smart?
Nay, none will consent or to barter or buy * Such loss, ne'er
     from sorrow and sickness to part:
I groan wi' the groaning of wine-wounded men * And pine for the
     pining ne'er freeth my heart."

And by Allah, meseemed the doors and the walls and all that was in the
house answered and sang with him, for the beauty of his voice, so that
I fancied my very limbs and clothes replied to him, and I abode amazed
and unable to speak or move, for the trouble of my heart. Then he sang
these couplets,

"Culvers of Liwa![FN#121] to your nests return; * Your mournful
     voices thrill this heart of mine.
Then back a-copse they flew, and well-nigh took * My life and
     made me tell my secret pine.
With cooing call they one who's gone, as though * Their breasts
     were maddened with the rage of wine:
Ne'er did mine eyes their like for culvers see * Who weep yet
     tear-drops never dye their eyne."

And also these couplets,

"O Zephyr of Najd, when from Najd thou blow, * Thy breathings
     heap only new woe on woe!
The turtle bespake me in bloom of morn * From the cassia-twig and
     the willow-bough
She moaned with the moaning of love-sick youth * And exposed
     love-secret I ne'er would show:
They say lover wearies of love when near * And is cured of love
     an afar he go:
I tried either cure which ne'er cured my love; * But that
     nearness is better than farness I know:[FN#122]
Yet,—the nearness of love shall no 'vantage prove * An whoso
     thou lovest deny thee of love."

Then said he, "O Ibrahim, sing this song after me, and preserving the
mode thereof in thy singing, teach it to thy slave-girls." Quoth I,
"Repeat it to me." But he answered, "There needs no repetition; thou
hast it by heart nor is there more to learn." Then he suddenly vanished
from my sight. At this I was amazed and running to my sword drew it and
made for the door of the Harim, but found it closed and said to the
women, "What have ye heard?" Quoth they, "We have heard the sweetest of
singing and the goodliest." Then I went forth amazed, to the house-door
and, finding it locked, questioned the doorkeepers of the old man. They
replied, "What old man? By Allah, no one hath gone in to thee this
day!" So I returned pondering the matter, when, behold, there arose
from one of the corners of the house, a Vox et praeterea nihil, saying,
"O Abu Ishak, no harm shall befal thee. 'Tis I, Abú Murrah,[FN#123] who
have been thy cup-companion this day, so fear nothing!" Then I mounted
and rode to the palace, where I told Al-Rashid what had passed, and he
said, "Repeat to me the airs thou heardest from him." So I took the
lute and played and sang them to him; for, behold, they were rooted in
my heart. The Caliph was charmed with them and drank thereto, albeit he
was no confirmed wine-bibber, saying, "Would he would some day pleasure
us with his company, as he hath pleasured thee!"[FN#124] Then he
ordered me a present and I took it and went away. And men relate this
story anent


Quoth Masrur the Eunuch, "The Caliph Harun Al-Rashid was very wakeful
one night and said to me, 'See which of the poets is at the door
to-night.' So I went out and finding Jamí­l bin Ma'amar
al-Uzrí­[FN#126] in the antechamber, said to him, 'Answer the Commander
of the Faithful.' Quoth he, 'I hear and I obey,' and going in with me,
saluted the Caliph, who returned his greeting and bade him sit down.
Then he said to him, 'O Jamil, hast thou any of thy wonderful new
stories to tell us?' He replied, 'Yes, O Commander of the Faithful:
wouldst thou fainer hear that which I have seen with mine eyes or that
which I have only heard?' Quoth the Caliph, 'Tell me something thou
hast actually beheld.' Quoth Jamil, ''Tis well, O Prince of True
Believers; incline thy heart to me and lend me thine ears.' The Caliph
took a bolster of red brocade, purfled with gold and stuffed with
ostrich-feathers and, laying it under his thighs, propped up both
elbows thereon; then he said to Jamil, 'Now[FN#127] for thy tale, O
Jamil!' Thereupon he begun, 'Know, O Commander of the Faithful, that I
was once desperately enamoured of a certain girl and used to pay her
frequent visits.'"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Caliph had propped his elbows upon the brocaded cushion, he said, "Out
with thy tale, O Jamil!" and the poet begun:—Know, O Commander of the
Faithful, I was desperately in love with a girl and used often to visit
her, because she was my desire and delight of all the things of this
world. After a while, her people removed with her, by reason of
scarcity of pasture, and I abode some time without seeing her, till I
grew restless for desire and longed for her sight and the flesh[FN#128]
urged me to journey to her. One night, I could hold out no longer; so I
rose and saddling my she-camel, bound on my turban and donned my oldest
dress.[FN#129] Then I baldricked myself with my sword and slinging my
spear behind me, mounted and rode forth in quest of her. I fared on
fast till, one night, it was pitch dark and exceeding black, yet I
persisted in the hard task of climbing down Wadys and up hills, hearing
on all sides the roaring of lions and howling of wolves and the cries
of the wild beasts. My reason was troubled thereat and my heart sank
within me; but for all that my tongue ceased not to call on the name of
Almighty Allah. As I went along thus, sleep overtook me and the camel
carried me aside out of my road, till, presently, something[FN#130]
smote me on the head, and I woke, startled and alarmed, and found
myself in a pasturage full of trees and streams and birds on the
branches, warbling their various speech and notes. As the trees were
tangled I alighted and, taking my camel's halter in hand, fared on
softly with her, till I got clear of the thick growth and came out into
the open country, where I adjusted her saddle and mounted again,
knowing not where to go nor whither the Fates should lead me; but,
presently, peering afar into the desert, I espied a fire in its middle
depth. So I smote my camel and made for the fire. When I drew near, I
saw a tent pitched, and fronted by a spear stuck in the ground, with a
pennon flying[FN#131] and horses tethered and camels feeding, and said
in myself, "Doubtless there hangeth some grave matter by this tent, for
I see none other than it in the desert." So I went up thereto and said,
"Peace be with you, O people of the tent, and the mercy of Allah and
His Blessing!" Whereupon there came forth to me a young man as youths
are when nineteen years old, who was like the full moon shining in the
East, with valour written between his eyes, and answered, saying, "And
with thee be the Peace, and Allah's mercy and His blessing! O brother
of the Arabs, methinks thou hast lost thy way?" Replied I, "Even so,
direct me right, Allah have mercy on thee!" He rejoined, "O brother of
the Arabs, of a truth this our land is infested with lions and the
night is exceeding dark and dreary, beyond measure cold and gloomy, and
I fear lest the wild beasts rend thee in pieces; wherefore do thou
alight and abide with me this night in ease and comfort, and to-morrow
I will put thee in the right way." Accordingly, I dismounted and
hobbled my she- camel with the end of her halter;[FN#132] then I put
off my heavy upper clothes and sat down. Presently the young man took a
sheep and slaughtered it and kindled a brisk fire; after which he went
into the tent and bringing out finely powdered salt and spices, fell to
cutting off pieces of mutton and roasting them over the fire and
feeding me therewith, weeping at one while and sighing at another. Then
he groaned heavily and wept sore and improvised these couplets,

"There remains to him naught save a flitting breath * And an eye
     whose babe ever wandereth.
There remains not a joint in his limbs, but what * Disease firm
     fixt ever tortureth.
His tears are flowing, his vitals burning; * Yet for all his
     tongue still he silenceth.
All foemen in pity beweep his woes; * Ah for freke whom the
     foeman pitieth!"

By this I knew, O Commander of the Faithful, that the youth was a
distracted lover (for none knoweth passion save he who hath tasted the
passion-savour), and quoth I to myself, "Shall I ask him?" But I
consulted my judgment and said, "How shall I assail him with
questioning, and I in his abode?" So I restrained myself and ate my
sufficiency of the meat. When we had made an end of eating, the young
man arose and entering the tent, brought out a handsome basin and ewer
and a silken napkin, whose ends were purfled with red gold and a
sprinkling-bottle full of rose-water mingled with musk. I marvelled at
his dainty delicate ways and said in my mind, "Never wot I of delicacy
in the desert." Then we washed our hands and talked a while, after
which he went into the tent and making a partition between himself and
me with a piece of red brocade, said to me, "Enter, O Chief of the
Arabs, and take thy rest; for thou hast suffered more of toil and
travel than sufficeth this night and in this thy journey." So I entered
and finding a bed of green brocade, doffed my dress and passed a night
such as I had never passed in my life.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Six Hundred and Ninetieth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Jamil spoke,
saying:—Never in my life passed I a night like that. I pondered the
young man's case, till the world was dark and all eyes slept, when I
was aroused by the sound of a low voice, never heard I a softer or
sweeter. I raised the curtain which hung between us and saw a damsel
(never beheld I a fairer of face), by the young man's side and they
were both weeping and complaining, one to other of the pangs of passion
and desire and of the excess of their longing for union.[FN#133] Quoth
I, "By Allah, I wonder who may be this second one! When I entered this
tent, there was none therein save this young man." And after reflection
I added, "Doubtless this damsel is of the daughters of the Jinn and is
enamoured of this youth; so they have secluded themselves with each
other in this solitary place." Then I considered her closely and
behold, she was a mortal and an Arab girl, whose face, when she
unveiled, shamed the shining sun, and the tent was lit up by the light
of her countenance. When I was assured that she was his beloved, I
bethought me of lover-jealousy; so I let drop the curtain and covering
my face, fell asleep. As soon as it was dawn I arose and donning my
clothes, made the Wuzu-ablution and prayed such prayers as are
obligatory and which I had deferred. Then I said, "O brother of the
Arabs, wilt thou direct me into the right road and thus add to thy
favours?" He replied, "At thy leisure, O chief of the Arabs, the term
of the guest-rite is three days,[FN#134] and I am not one to let thee
go before that time." So I abode with him three days, and on the fourth
day as we sat talking, I asked him of his name and lineage. Quoth he
"As for my lineage, I am of the Banú Odhrah; my name is such an one,
son of such an one and my father's brother is called such an one." And
behold, O Commander of the Faithful, he was the son of my paternal
uncle and of the noblest house of the Banú Uzrah. Said I, "O my cousin,
what moved thee to act on this wise, secluding thyself in the waste and
leaving thy fair estate and that of thy father and thy slaves and
handmaids?" When he heard my words, his eyes filled with tears and he
replied, "Know, O my cousin, that I fell madly in love of the daughter
of my father's brother, fascinated by her, distracted for her,
passion-possessed as by a Jinn, wholly unable to let her out of my
sight. So I sought her in marriage of her sire, but he refused and
married her to a man of the Banu Odhrah, who went in to her and carried
her to his abiding-place this last year. When she was thus far removed
from me and I was prevented from looking on her, the fiery pangs of
passion and excess of love-longing and desire drove me to forsake my
clan[FN#135] and friends and fortune and take up my abode in this
desert, where I have grown used to my solitude." I asked, "Where are
their dwellings?" and he answered, "They are hard by, on the crest of
yonder hill; and every night, at the dead time, when all eyes sleep,
she stealeth secretly out of the camp, unseen of any one, and I satisfy
my desire of her converse and she of mine.[FN#136] So I abide thus,
solacing myself with her a part of the night, till Allah work out that
which is to be wrought; either I shall compass my desire, in
spite[FN#137] of the envious, or Allah will determine for me and He is
the best of determinators." Now when the youth told me his case, O
Commander of the Faithful, I was concerned for him and perplexed by
reason of my jealousy for his honour; so I said to him, "O son of my
uncle, wilt thou that I point out to thee a plan and suggest to thee a
project, whereby (please Allah) thou shalt find perfect welfare and the
way of right and successful issue whereby the Almighty shall do away
from thee that thou dreadest?" He replied, "Say on, O my cousin"; and
quoth I, "When it is night and the girl cometh, set her on my she-camel
which is swift of pace, and mount thou thy steed, whilst I bestride one
of these dromedaries. So will we fare on all night and when the morrow
morns, we shall have traversed wolds and wastes, and thou wilt have
attained thy desire and won the beloved of thy heart. The Almighty's
earth is wide, and by Allah, I will back thee with heart and wealth and
sword."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Jamil
advised the elopement and night journey, promising his aid as long as
he lived, the youth accepted and said, "O cousin, wait till I take
counsel with her, for she is quick-witted and prudent and hath insight
into affairs." So (continued Jamil) when the night darkened and the
hour of her coming arrived, and he awaiting her at the appointed tide,
she delayed beyond her usual time, and I saw him go forth the door of
the tent and opening his mouth, inhale the wafts of breeze that blew
from her quarter, as if to snuff her perfume, and he repeated these two

"Breeze of East who bringest me gentle air * From the place of
     sojourn where dwells my fair:
O Breeze, of the lover thou bearest sign, * Canst not of her
     coming some signal bear?"

Then he entered the tent and sat weeping awhile; after which he said to
me, "O my cousin, some mischance must have betided the daughter of mine
uncle, or some accident must have hindered her from coming to me this
night," presently adding, "But abide where thou art, till I bring thee
the news." And he took sword and shield and was absent a while of the
night, after which he returned, carrying something in hand and called
aloud to me. So I hastened to him and he said, "O my cousin, knowest
thou what hath happened?" I replied, "No, by Allah!" Quoth he, "Verily,
I am distraught concerning my cousin this night; for, as she was coming
to me, a lion met her in the way and devoured her, and there remaineth
of her but what thou seest." So saying, he threw down what he had in
his hand, and behold, it was the damsel's turband and what was left of
her bones. Then he wept sore and casting down his bow,[FN#138] took a
bag and went forth again saying, "Stir not hence till I return to thee,
if it please Almighty Allah." He was absent a while and presently
returned, bearing in his hand a lion's head, which he threw on the
ground and called for water. So I brought him water, with which he
washed the lion's mouth and fell to kissing it and weeping; and he
mourned for her exceedingly and recited these couplets,

"Ho thou lion who broughtest thyself to woe, * Thou art slain and
     worse sorrows my bosom rend!
Thou hast reft me of fairest companionship, * Made her home
     Earth's womb till the world shall end.
To Time, who hath wrought me such grief, I say, * 'Allah grant in
     her stead never show a friend!'"

Then said he to me, "O cousin, I conjure thee by Allah and the claims
of kindred and consanguinity[FN#139] between us, keep thou my charge.
Thou wilt presently see me dead before thee; whereupon do thou wash me
and shroud me and these that remain of my cousin's bones in this robe
and bury us both in one grave and write thereon these two couplets,

'On Earth surface we lived in rare ease and joy * By fellowship
     joined in one house and home.
But Fate with her changes departed us, * And the shroud conjoins
     us in Earth's cold womb.'"

Then he wept with sore weeping and, entering the tent, was absent
awhile, after which he came forth, groaning and crying out. Then he
gave one sob and departed this world. When I saw that he was indeed
dead, it was grievous to me and so sore was my sorrow for him that I
had well-nigh followed him for excess of mourning over him. Then I laid
him out and did as he had enjoined me, shrouding his cousin's remains
with him in one robe and laying the twain in one grave. I abode by
their tomb three days, after which I departed and continued to pay
frequent pious visits[FN#140] to the place for two years. This then is
their story, O Commander of the Faithful! Al-Rashid was pleased with
Jamil's story and rewarded him with a robe of honour and a handsome
present. And men also tell a tale concerning


Caliph Mu'áwiyah was sitting one day in his palace[FN#142] at Damascus,
in a room whose windows were open on all four sides, that the breeze
might enter from every quarter. Now it was a day of excessive heat,
with no breeze from the hills stirring, and the middle of the day, when
the heat was at its height, and the Caliph saw a man coming along,
scorched by the heat of the ground and limping, as he fared on
barefoot. Mu'awiyah considered him awhile and said to his courtiers,
"Hath Allah (may He be extolled and exalted!) created any miserabler
than he who need must hie abroad at such an hour and in such sultry
tide as this?" Quoth one of them, "Haply he seeketh the Commander of
the Faithful;" and quoth the Caliph, "By Allah, if he seek me, I will
assuredly give to him, and if he be wronged, I will certainly succour
him. Ho, boy! Stand at the door, and if yonder wild Arab seek to come
in to me, forbid him not therefrom." So the page went out and presently
the Arab came up to him and he said, "What dost thou want?" Answered
the other, "I want the Commander of the Faithful," and the page said,
"Enter." So he entered and saluted the Caliph,—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the page
allowed him to enter, the Badawi saluted the Caliph, who said to him,
"Who art thou?" Replied the Arab, "I am a man of the Banú
Tamí­m."[FN#143] "And what bringeth thee here at this season?" asked
Mu'awiyah; and the Arab answered, "I come to thee, complaining and thy
protection imploring." "Against whom?" "Against Marwan bin
al-Hakam,[FN#144] thy deputy," replied he, and began reciting,

"Mu'áwiyah,[FN#145] thou gen'rous lord, and best of men that be;
     * And oh, thou lord of learning, grace and fair humanity,
Thee-wards I come because my way of life is strait to me: * O
     help! and let me not despair thine equity to see.
Deign thou redress the wrong that dealt the tyrant whim of him *
     Who better had my life destroyed than made such wrong to
He robbed me of my wife Su'ad and proved him worst of foes, *
     Stealing mine honour 'mid my folk with foul iniquity;
And went about to take my life before th' appointed day * Hath
     dawned which Allah made my lot by destiny's decree."

Now when Mu'awiyah heard him recite these verses, with the fire
flashing from his mouth, he said to him, "Welcome and fair welcome, O
brother of the Arabs! Tell me thy tale and acquaint me with thy case."
Replied the Arab, "O Commander of the Faithful, I had a wife whom I
loved passing dear with love none came near; and she was the coolth of
mine eyes and the joy of my heart; and I had a herd of camels, whose
produce enabled me to maintain my condition; but there came upon us a
bad year which killed off hoof and horn and left me naught. When what
was in my hand failed me and wealth fell from me and I lapsed into evil
case, I at once became abject and a burden to those who erewhile wished
to visit me; and when her father knew it, he took her from me and
abjured me and drove me forth without ruth. So I repaired to thy
deputy, Marwan bin al-Hakam, and asked his aid. He summoned her sire
and questioned him of my case, when he denied any knowledge of me.
Quoth I, 'Allah assain the Emir! An it please him to send for the woman
and question her of her father's saying, the truth will appear.' So he
sent for her and brought her; but no sooner had he set eyes on her than
he fell in love with her; so, becoming my rival, he denied me succour
and was wroth with me, and sent me to prison, where I became as I had
fallen from heaven and the wind had cast me down in a far land. Then
said Marwan to her father, 'Wilt thou give her to me to wife, on a
present settlement of a thousand dinars and a contingent dowry of ten
thousand dirhams,[FN#146] and I will engage to free her from yonder
wild Arab!' Her father was seduced by the bribe and agreed to the
bargain; whereupon Marwan sent for me and looking at me like an angry
lion, said to me, 'O Arab, divorce Su'ad.' I replied, 'I will not put
her away;' but he set on me a company of his servants, who tortured me
with all manner of tortures, till I found no help for it but to divorce
her. I did so and he sent me back to prison, where I abode till the
days of her purification were accomplished, when he married her and let
me go. So now I come hither in thee hoping and thy succour imploring
and myself on thy protection throwing." And he spoke these couplets,

"Within my heart is fire       * Whichever flameth higher;
Within my frame are pains      * For skill of leach too dire.
Live coals in vitals burn      * And sparks from coal up spire:
Tears flood mine eyes and down * Coursing my cheek ne'er tire:
Only God's aid and thine       * I crave for my desire!"

Then he was convulsed,[FN#147] and his teeth chattered and he fell down
in a fit, squirming like a scotched snake. When Mu'awiyah heard his
story and his verse, he said, "Marwan bin al- Hakam hath transgressed
against the laws of the Faith and hath violated the Harim of True
Believers!"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying
her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Caliph Mu'awiyah heard the wild Arab's words, he said, "The son of
Al-Hakam hath indeed transgressed against the laws of the Faith and
hath violated the Harim of True Believers," presently adding, "O Arab,
thou comest to me with a story, the like whereof I never heard!" Then
he called for inkcase and paper and wrote to Marwan as follows, "Verily
it hath reached me that thou transgresseth the laws of the Faith with
regard to thy lieges. Now it behoveth the Wali who governeth the folk
to keep his eyes from their lusts and stay his flesh from its
delights." And after he wrote many words, which (quoth he who told me
the tale) I omit, for brevity's sake, and amongst them these couplets,

"Thou wast invested (woe to thee!)[FN#148] with rule for thee
     unfit; * Crave thou of Allah pardon for thy foul adultery.
Th' unhappy youth to us is come complaining 'mid his groans * And
     asks for redress for parting-grief and saddened me through
An oath have I to Allah sworn shall never be forsworn; * Nay,
     for I'll do what Faith and Creed command me to decree.
An thou dare cross me in whate'er to thee I now indite * I of
     thy flesh assuredly will make the vulture free.
Divorce Su'ad, equip her well, and in the hottest haste * With
     Al-Kumayt and Ziban's son, hight Nasr, send to me."

Then he folded the letter and, sealing it with his seal, delivered it
to Al-Kumayt[FN#149] and Nasr bin Zibán (whom he was wont to employ on
weighty matters, because of their trustiness) who took the missive and
carried it to Al-Medinah, where they went in to Marwan and saluting him
delivered to him the writ and told him how the case stood. He read the
letter and fell a-weeping; but he went in to Su'ad (as 'twas not in his
power to refuse obedience to the Caliph) and, acquainting her with the
case, divorced her in the presence of Al-Kumayt and Nasr; after which
he equipped her and delivered her to them, together with a letter to
the Caliph wherein he versified as follows,

"Hurry not, Prince of Faithful Men! with best of grace thy vow
     * I will accomplish as 'twas vowed and with the gladdest
I sinned not adulterous sin when loved her I, then how * Canst
     charge me with advowtrous deed or any villainy?
Soon comes to thee that splendid sun which hath no living peer
     * On earth, nor aught in mortal men or Jinns her like
     shalt see."

This he sealed with his own signet and gave to the messengers who
returned with Su'ad to Damascus and delivered to Mu'awiyah the letter,
and when he had read it he cried, "Verily, he hath obeyed handsomely,
but he exceedeth in his praise of the woman." Then he called for her
and saw beauty such as he had never seen, for comeliness and
loveliness, stature and symmetrical grace; moreover, he talked with her
and found her fluent of speech and choice in words. Quoth he, "Bring me
the Arab." So they fetched the man, who came, sore disordered for
shifts and changes of fortune, and Mu'awiyah said to him, "O Arab, an
thou wilt freely give her up to me, I will bestow upon thee in her
stead three slave girls, high-bosomed maids like moons, with each a
thousand dinars; and I will assign thee on the Treasury such an annual
sum as shall content thee and enrich thee." When the Arab heard this,
he groaned one groan and swooned away, so that Mu'awiyah thought he was
dead; and, as soon as he revived, the Caliph said to him, "What aileth
thee?" The Arab answered, "With heavy heart and in sore need have I
appealed to thee from the injustice of Marwan bin al-Hakam; but to whom
shall I appeal from thine injustice?" And he versified in these

"Make me not (Allah save the Caliph!) one of the betrayed *
     Who from the fiery sands to fire must sue for help and
Deign thou restore Su'ád to this afflicted heart distraught, *
     Which every morn and eve by sorest sorrow is waylaid:
Loose thou my bonds and grudge me not and give her back to me;
     * And if thou do so ne'er thou shalt for lack of thanks

Then said he, "By Allah, O Commander of the Faithful, wert thou to give
me all the riches contained in the Caliphate, yet would I not take them
without Su'ad." And he recited this couplet,

"I love Su'ád and unto all but hers my love is dead, * Each morn I feel
her love to me is drink and daily bread."

Quoth the Caliph, "Thou confessest to having divorced her and Marwan
owned the like; so now we will give her free choice. An she choose
other than thee, we will marry her to him, and if she choose thee, we
will restore her to thee." Replied the Arab, "Do so." So Mu'awiyah said
to her, "What sayest thou, O Su'ad? Which dost thou choose; the
Commander of the Faithful, with his honour and glory and dominion and
palaces and treasures and all else thou seest at this command, or
Marwin bin al-Hakam with his violence and tyranny, or this Arab, with
his hunger and poverty?" So she improvised these couplets,

"This one, whom hunger plagues, and rags unfold, * Dearer than
     tribe and kith and kin I hold;
Than crownèd head, or deputy Marwán, * Or all who boast of
     silver coins and gold."

Then said she, "By Allah, O Commander of the Faithful, I will not
forsake him for the shifts of Fortune or the perfidies of Fate, there
being between us old companionship we may not forget, and love beyond
stay and let; and indeed 'tis but just that I bear with him in his
adversity, even as I shared with him in prosperity." The Caliph
marvelled at her wit and love and constancy and, ordering her ten
thousand dirhams, delivered her to the Arab, who took his wife and went
away.[FN#150] And they likewise tell a tale of


The Caliph Harun al-Rashid was sleepless one night; so he sent for
Al-Asma'i and Husayn al-Khalí­'a[FN#151] and said to them, "Tell me a
story you twain and do thou begin, O Husayn." He said, "'Tis well, O
Commander of the Faithful;" and thus began: Some years ago, I dropped
down stream to Bassorah, to present to Mohammed bin Sulayman
al-Rabí­'í­[FN#152] a Kasidah or elegy I had composed in his praise;
and he accepted it and bade me abide with him. One day, I went out to
Al-Mirbad,[FN#153] by way of Al-Muháliyah;[FN#154] and, being oppressed
by the excessive heat, went up to a great door, to ask for drink, when
I was suddenly aware of a damsel, as she were a branch swaying, with
eyes languishing, eye brows arched and finely pencilled and smooth
cheeks rounded clad in a shift the colour of a pomegranate flower, and
a mantilla of Sana'á[FN#155] work; but the perfect whiteness of her
body overcame the redness of her shift, through which glittered two
breasts like twin granadoes and a waist, as it were a roll of fine
Coptic linen, with creases like scrolls of pure white paper stuffed
with musk [FN#156] Moreover, O Prince of True Believers, round her neck
was slung an amulet of red gold that fell down between her breasts, and
on the plain of her forehead were browlocks like jet.[FN#157] Her
eyebrows joined and her eyes were like lakes; she had an aquiline nose
and thereunder shell-like lips showing teeth like pearls. Pleasantness
prevailed in every part of her; but she seemed dejected, disturbed,
distracted and in the vestibule came and went, walking upon the hearts
of her lovers, whilst her legs[FN#158] made mute the voices of their
ankle-rings; and indeed she was as saith the poet,

"Each portion of her charms we see * Seems of the whole a simile"

I was overawed by her, O Commander of the Faithful, and drew near her
to greet her, and behold, the house and vestibule and highways breathed
fragrant with musk. So I saluted her and she returned my salaam with a
voice dejected and heart depressed and with the ardour of passion
consumed. Then said I to her, "O my lady, I am an old man and a
stranger and sore troubled by thirst. Wilt thou order me a draught of
water, and win reward in heaven?" She cried, "Away, O Shaykh, from me!
I am distracted from all thought of meat and drink."—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the damsel
said, "O Shaykh, I am distracted from all thought of meat and drink."
Quoth I (continued Husayn), "By what ailment, O my lady?" and quoth
she, "I love one who dealeth not justly by me and I desire one who of
me will none. Wherefore I am afflicted with the wakefulness of those
who wake star-gazing." I asked, "O my lady, is there on the wide
expanse of earth one to whom thou hast a mind and who to thee hath no
mind?" Answered she, "Yes; and this for the perfection of beauty and
loveliness and goodliness wherewith he is endowed." "And why standeth
thou in this porch?" enquired I. "This is his road," replied she, "and
the hour of his passing by." I said, "O my lady, have ye ever
foregathered and had such commerce and converse as might cause this
passion?" At this she heaved a deep sigh; the tears rained down her
cheeks, as they were dew falling upon roses, and she versified with
these couplets,

"We were like willow-boughs in garden shining * And scented
     joys in happiest life combining;
Whenas one bough from other self would rend * And oh! thou
     seest this for that repining!"

Quoth I, "O maid, and what betideth thee of thy love for this man?";
and quoth she, "I see the sun upon the walls of his folk and I think
the sun is he; or haply I catch sight of him unexpectedly and am
confounded and the blood and the life fly my body and I abide in
unreasoning plight a week or e'en a se'nnight." Said I, "Excuse me, for
I also have suffered that which is upon thee of love-longing and
distraction of soul and wasting of frame and loss of strength; and I
see in thee pallor of complexion and emaciation, such as testify of the
fever-fits of desire. But how shouldst thou be unsmitten of passion and
thou a sojourner in the land of Bassorah?" Said she, "By Allah, before
I fell in love of this youth, I was perfect in beauty and loveliness
and amorous grace which ravished all the Princes of Bassorah, till he
fell in love with me." I asked, "O maid, and who parted you?"; and she
answered, "The vicissitudes of fortune, but the manner of our
separation was strange; and 'twas on this wise. One New Year's day I
had invited the damsels of Bassorah and amongst them a girl belonging
to Siran, who had bought her out of Oman for four score thousand
dirhams. She loved me and loved me to madness and when she entered she
threw herself upon me and well nigh tore me in pieces with bites and
pinches.[FN#159] Then we withdrew apart, to drink wine at our ease,
till our meat was ready[FN#160] and our delight was complete, and she
toyed with me and I with her, and now I was upon her and now she was
upon me. Presently, the fumes of the wine moved her to strike her hand
on the inkle of my petticoat-trousers, whereby it became loosed,
unknown of either of us, and my trousers fell down in our play. At this
moment he came in unobserved and, seeing me thus, was wroth at the
sight and made off, as the Arab filly hearing the tinkle of her
bridle."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the maiden
said to Husayn al-Khali'a, "When my lover saw me playing, as I
described to thee, with Siran's girl, he went forth in anger. And 'tis
now, O Shaykh, three years ago, and since then I have never ceased to
excuse myself to him and coax him and crave his indulgence, but he will
neither cast a look at me from the corner of his eye, nor write me a
word nor speak to me by messenger nor hear from me aught." Quoth I,
"Harkye maid, is he an Arab or an Ajam?"; and quoth she, "Out on thee!
He is of the Princes of Bassorah." "Is he old or young?" asked I; and
she looked at me laughingly and answered, "Thou art certainly a
simpleton! He is like the moon on the night of its full, smooth-cheeked
and beardless, nor is there any defect in him except his aversion to
me." Then I put the question, "What is his name?" and she replied,
"What wilt thou do with him?" I rejoined, "I will do my best to come at
him, that I may bring about reunion between you." Said she, "I will
tell thee on condition that thou carry him a note;" and I said "I have
no objection to that." Then quoth she, "His name is Zamrah bin
al-Mughayrah, hight Abú al-Sakhá,[FN#161] and his palace is in the
Mirbad." Therewith she called to those within for inkcase and paper and
tucking up[FN#162] her sleeves, showed two wrists like broad rings of
silver. She then wrote after the Basmalah as follows, "My lord, the
omission of blessings[FN#163] at the head of this my letter shows mine
insufficiency, and know that had my prayer been answered, thou hadst
never left me; for how often have I prayed that thou shouldest not
leave me, and yet thou didst leave me! Were it not that distress with
me exceedeth the bounds of restraint, that which thy servant hath
forced herself to do in writing this writ were an aidance to her,
despite her despair of thee, because of her knowledge of thee that thou
wilt fail to answer. Do thou fulfil her desire, my lord, of a sight of
thee from the porch, as thou passest in the street, wherewith thou wilt
quicken the dead soul in her. Or, far better for her still than this,
do thou write her a letter with thine own hand (Allah endow it with all
excellence!), and appoint it in requital of the intimacy that was
between us in the nights of time past, whereof thou must preserve the
memory. My lord, was I not to thee a lover sick with passion? An thou
answer my prayer, I will give to thee thanks and to Allah praise; and
so The Peace!"[FN#164] Then she gave me the letter and I went away.
Next morning I repaired to the door of the Viceroy Mohammed bin
Sulayman, where I found an assembly of the notables of Bassorah, and
amongst them a youth who adorned the gathering and surpassed in beauty
and brightness all who were there; and indeed the Emir Mohammed set him
above himself. I asked who he was and behold, it was Zamrah himself: so
I said in my mind, "Verily, there hath befallen yonder unhappy one that
which hath befallen her[FN#165]!" Then I betook myself to the Mirbad
and stood waiting at the door of his house, till he came riding up in
state, when I accosted him and invoking more than usual blessings on
him, handed him the missive. When he read it and understood it he said
to me, "O Shaykh, we have taken other in her stead. Say me, wilt thou
see the substitute?" I answered, "Yes." Whereupon he called out a
woman's name, and there came forth a damsel who shamed the two greater
lights; swelling-breasted, walking the gait of one who hasteneth
without fear, to whom he gave the note, saying, "Do thou answer it."
When she read it, she turned pale at the contents and said to me, " O
old man, crave pardon of Allah for this that thou hast brought." So I
went out, O Commander of the Faithful, dragging my feet and returning
to her asked leave to enter. When she saw me, she asked, "What is
behind thee?"; and I answered, "Evil and despair." Quoth she, "Have
thou no concern of him. Where are Allah and His power?"[FN#166] Then
she ordered me five hundred dinars and I took them and went away. Some
days after I passed by the place and saw there horsemen and footmen. So
I went in and lo! these were the companions of Zamrah, who were begging
her to return to him; but she said, "No, by Allah, I will not look him
in the face!" And she prostrated herself in gratitude to Allah and
exultation over Zamrah's defeat. Then I drew near her, and she pulled
out to me a letter, wherein was written, after the Bismillah, "My lady,
but for my forbearance towards thee (whose life Allah lengthen!) I
would relate somewhat of what betided from thee and set out my excuse,
in that thou transgressedst against me, whenas thou wast manifestly a
sinner against thyself and myself in breach of vows and lack of
constancy and preference of another over us; for, by Allah, on whom we
call for help against that which was of thy free will, thou didst
transgress against the love of me; and so The Peace!" Then she showed
me the presents and rarities he had sent her, which were of the value
of thirty thousand dinars. I saw her again after this, and Zamrah had
married her. Quoth Al-Rashid, "Had not Zamrah been beforehand with us,
I should certainly have had to do with her myself."[FN#167] And men
tell the tale of


Quoth Ishak bin Ibrahim al-Mausili: I was in my house one night in the
winter time, when the clouds had dispread themselves and the rains
poured down in torrents, as from the mouths of water-skins, and the
folk forbore to come and go about the ways for that which was therein
of rain and slough. Now I was straitened in breast because none of my
brethren came to me nor could I go to them, by reason of the mud and
mire; so I said to my servant, "Bring me wherewithal I may divert
myself." Accordingly he brought me meat and drink, but I had no heart
to eat, without some one to keep me company, and I ceased not to look
out of window and watch the ways till nightfall, when I bethought
myself of a damsel belonging to one of the sons of Al-Mahdi,[FN#169]
whom I loved and who was skilled in singing and playing upon
instruments of music, and said to myself, "Were she here with us
to-night, my joy would be complete and my night would be abridged of
the melancholy and restlessness which are upon me." At this moment one
knocked at the door, saying, "Shall a beloved enter in who standeth at
the door?" Quoth I to myself, "Meseems the plant of my desire hath
fruited." So I went to the door and found my mistress, with a long
green skirt[FN#170] wrapped about her and a kerchief of brocade on her
head, to fend her from the rain. She was covered with mud to her knees
and all that was upon her was drenched with water from
gargoyles[FN#171] and house spouts; in short, she was in sorry plight.
So I said to her, "O my mistress, what bringeth thee hither through all
this mud?" Replied she, "Thy messenger came and set forth to me that
which was with thee of love and longing, so that I could not choose but
yield and hasten to thee." I marvelled at this And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the damsel
came and knocked at Ishak's door, he went forth to her and cried, 'O my
lady, what bringeth thee hither through all this mud?"; and she
replied, "Thy messenger came and set forth to me that which was with
thee of love and longing, so that I could not choose but yield and
hasten to thee." I marvelled at this, but did not like to tell her that
I had sent no messenger; wherefore I said, "Praised be Allah for that
He hath brought us together, after all I have suffered by the
mortification of patience! Verily, hadst thou delayed an hour longer, I
must have run to thee, because of my much love for thee and longing for
thy presence." Then I called to my boy for water, that I might better
her plight, and he brought a kettle full of hot water such as she
wanted. I bade pour it over her feet, whilst I set to work to wash them
myself; after which I called for one of my richest dresses and clad her
therein after she had doffed the muddy clothes. Then, as soon as we
were comfortably seated, I would have called for food, but she refused
and I said to her, "Art thou for wine?"; and she replied, "Yes." So I
fetched cups and she asked me, "Who shall sing?" "I, O my princess!" "I
care not for that;" "One of my damsels?" "I have no mind to that
either!" "Then sing thyself." "Not I!" "Who then shall sing for thee?"
I enquired, and she rejoined, "Go out and seek some one to sing for
me." So I went out, in obedience to her, though I despaired of finding
any one in such weather and fared on till I came to the main street,
where I suddenly saw a blind man striking the earth with his staff and
saying, "May Allah not requite with weal those with whom I was! When I
sang, they listened not, and when I was silent, they made light of me."
So I said to him, "Art thou a singer?" and he replied, "Yes." Quoth I,
"Wilt thou finish thy night with us and cheer us with thy company?";
and quoth he, "If it be thy will, take my hand." So I took his hand
and, leading him to my house, said to the damsel, "O my mistress, I
have brought a blind singer, with whom we may take our pleasure and he
will not see us." She said, "Bring him to me." So I brought him in and
invited him to eat. He ate but a very little and washed his hands,
after which I brought him wine and he drank three cupsful. Then he said
to me, "Who art thou?"; and I replied, "I am Ishak bin Ibrahim
al-Mausili." Quoth he, "I have heard of thee and now I rejoice in thy
company;" and I, "O my lord, I am glad in thy gladness." He said, "O
Ishak, sing to me." So I took the lute by way of jest, and cried, "I
hear and I obey." When I had made an end of my song, he said to me, "O
Ishak, thou comest nigh to be a singer!" His words belittled me in mine
own eyes and I threw the lute from my hand, whereupon he said, "Hast
thou not with thee some one who is skilled in singing?" Quoth I, "I
have a damsel with me;" and quoth he "Bid her sing." I asked him, "Wilt
thou sing, when thou hast had enough of her singing?"; and he answered
"Yes." So she sang and he said, "Nay, thou hast shown no art."
Whereupon she flung the lute from her hand in wrath and cried, "We have
done our best: if thou have aught, favour us with it by way of an
alms." Quoth he, "Bring me a lute hand hath not touched." So I bade the
servant bring him a new lute and he tuned it and preluding in a mode I
knew not began to sing, improvising these couplets,

"Clove through the shades and came to me in night so dark and
     sore * The lover weeting of herself 'twas trysting-tide
     once more:
Naught startled us but her salaam and first of words she said
     * 'May a beloved enter in who standeth at the door!'"

When the girl heard this, she looked at me askance and said, "What
secret was between us could not thy breast hold for one hour, but thou
must discover it to this man?" However, I swore to her that I had not
told him and excused myself to her and fell to kissing her hands and
tickling her breasts and biting her cheeks, till she laughed and,
turning to the blind man, said to him, "Sing, O my lord!" So he took
the lute and sang these two couplets,

"Ah, often have I sought the fair; how often fief and fain *
     My palming felt the finger ends that bear the varied
And tickled pouting breasts that stand firm as pomegranates
     twain * And bit the apple of her cheek kissed o'er and
     o'er again."

So I said to her, "O my princess, who can have told him what we were
about?" Replied she, "True," and we moved away from him. Presently
quoth he, "I must make water;" and quoth I, "O boy, take the candle and
go before him." Then he went out and tarried a long while. So we went
in search of him, but could not find him; and behold, the doors were
locked and the keys in the closet, and we knew not whether to heaven he
had flown or into earth had sunk. Wherefore I knew that he was Iblis
and that he had done me pimp's duty, and I returned, recalling to
myself the words of Abu Nowas in these couplets,

"I marvel in Iblis such pride to see * Beside his low intent
     and villainy:
He sinned to Adam who to bow refused, * Yet pimps for all of
     Adam's progeny,"

And they tell a tale concerning


Quoth Ibrahim the father of Ishak,[FN#172] I was ever a devoted friend
to the Barmecide family. And it so happened to me one day, as I sat at
home quite alone, a knock was heard at the door; so my servant went out
and returned, saying, "A comely youth is at the door, asking
admission." I bade admit him and there came in to me a young man, on
whom were signs of sickness, and he said, "I have long wished to meet
thee, for I have need of thine aid." "What is it thou requirest?" asked
I. Whereupon he pulled out three hundred dinars and laying them before
me, said, "I beseech thee to accept these and compose me an air to two
couplets I have made." Said I, "Repeat them to me;"—and Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
youth came in to Ibrahim and placed the gold in his hands, saying,
"Prithee accept it and compose me an air to two couplets," he replied,
"Recite them to me," whereupon he recited,

"By Allah, glance of mine! thou hast opprest * My heart, so
     quench the fire that burns my breast.
Blames me the world because in him[FN#173] I live * Yet cannot
     see him till in shroud I rest."

Accordingly, quoth Ibrahim, I set the verses to an air plaintive as a
dirge and sang it to him; whereupon he swooned away and I thought that
he was dead. However, after a while, he came to himself, and said to
me, "Repeat the air." But I conjured him by Allah to excuse me, saying,
"I fear lest thou die." "Would Heaven it were so!" replied he and
ceased not humbly to importune me, till I had pity on him and repeated
it; whereupon he cried out with a grievous cry and fell into a fit
worse than before and I doubted not but that he was dead; but I
sprinkled rose-water on him till he revived and sat up. I praised Allah
for his recovery and laying the ducats before him, said, "Take thy
money and depart from me." Quoth he, "I have no need of the money and
thou shalt have the like of it, if thou wilt repeat the air." My breast
broadened at the mention of the money and I said, "I will repeat it,
but on three conditions: the first, that thou tarry with me and eat of
my victual, till thou regain strength; the second, that thou drink wine
enough to hearten thy heart, and the third, that thou tell me thy
tale." He agreed to this and ate and drank; after which he said, "I am
of the citizens of Al-Medinah and I went forth one day a-pleasuring
with my friends; and, following the road to Al-Akí­k,[FN#174] saw a
company of girls and amongst them a damsel as she were a branch pearled
with dew, with eyes whose sidelong glances were never withdrawn till
they had stolen away his soul who looked on them. The maidens rested in
the shade till the end of the day, when they went away, leaving in my
heart wounds slow to heal. I returned next morning to scent out news of
her, but found none who could tell me of her; so I sought her in the
streets and markets, but could come on no trace of her; wherefore I
fell ill of grief and told my case to one of my kinsmen, who said to
me, 'No harm shall befall thee: the days of spring are not yet past and
the skies show sign of rain,[FN#175] whereupon she will go forth, and I
will go out with thee, and do thou thy will.' His words comforted my
heart and I waited till al-Akik ran with water, when I went forth with
my friends and kinsmen and sat in the very same place where I first saw
her. We had not been seated long before up came the women, like horses
running for a wager; and I whispered to a girl of my kindred, 'Say to
yonder damsel— 'Quoth this man to thee, He did well who spoke this

'She shot my heart with shaft, then turned on heel * And flying dealt
fresh wound and scarring wheal.'

So she went to her and repeated my words, to which she replied saying,
'Tell him that he said well who answered in this couplet,

'The like of whatso feelest thou we feel; * Patience! perchance swift
cure our hearts shall heal.'

I refrained from further speech for fear of scandal and rose to go
away. She rose at my rising, and I followed and she looked back at me,
till she saw I had noted her abode. Then she began to come to me and I
to go to her, so that we foregathered and met often, till the case was
noised abroad and grew notorious and her sire came to know of it.
However I ceased not to meet her most assiduously and complained of my
condition to my father, who assembled our kindred and repaired to ask
her in marriage for me, of her sire, who cried, 'Had this been proposed
to me before he gave her a bad name by his assignations, I would have
consented; but now the thing is notorious and I am loath to verify the
saying of the folk.' " Then (continued Ibrahim) I repeated the air to
him and he went away, after having acquainted me with his abode, and we
became friends. Now I was devoted to the Barmecides; so next time
Ja'afar bin Yahya sat to give audience, I attended, as was my wont, and
sang to him the young man's verses. They pleased him and he drank some
cups of wine and said, "Fie upon thee! whose song is this?" So I told
him the young man's tale and he bade me ride over to him and give him
assurances of the winning of his wish. Accordingly I fetched him to
Ja'afar who asked him to repeat his story. He did so and Ja'afar said,
"Thou art now under my protection: trust me to marry thee to her." So
his heart was comforted and he abode with us. When the morning morrowed
Ja'afar mounted and went in to Al-Rashid, to whom he related the story.
The Caliph was pleased with it and sending for the young man and
myself, commanded me to repeat the air and drank thereto. Then he wrote
to the Governor of Al-Hijaz, bidding him despatch the girl's father and
his household in honourable fashion to his presence and spare no
expense for their outfit. So, in a little while, they came and the
Caliph, sending for the man, commanded him to marry his daughter to her
lover; after which he gave him an hundred thousand dinars, and the
father went back to his folk. As for the young man, he abode one of
Ja'afar's cup companions till there happened what happened[FN#176]
whereupon he returned with his household to al-Medinah; may Almighty
Allah have mercy upon their souls one and all! And they also tell, O
auspicious King, a tale of


There was given to Abú Ámir bin Marwán,[FN#177] a boy of the
Christians, than whom never fell eyes on a handsomer. Al-Nasir the
conquering Soldan saw him and said to Abu Amir, who was his Wazir,
"Whence cometh this boy?" Replied he, "From Allah;" whereupon the
other, "Wilt thou terrify us with stars and make us prisoner with
moons?" Abu Amir excused himself to him and preparing a present, sent
it to him with the boy, to whom he said, "Be thou part of the gift:
were it not of necessity, my soul had not consented to give thee away."
And he wrote with him these two couplets,

"My lord, this full moon takes in Heaven of thee new birth; *
     Nor can deny we Heaven excelleth humble earth:
Thee with my soul I please and—oh! the pleasant case! * No man
     e'er saw I who to give his soul prefer'th."

The thing pleased Al-Nasir and he requited him with much treasure and
the Minister became high in favour with him. After this, there was
presented to the Wazir a slave-girl, one of the loveliest women in the
world, and he feared lest this should come to the King's ears and he
desire her, and the like should happen as with the boy. So he made up a
present still costlier than the first and sent it with her to the
King,—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Wazir Abu
Amir, when presented with the beautiful slave girl, feared lest it come
to the Conquering King's ears and that the like should happen as with
the boy, so he made up a present still costlier than the first and sent
it with her to his master, accompanying it with these couplets,

"My lord, this be the Sun, the Moon thou hadst before; * So
     the two greater lights now in thy Heaven unite:
Conjunction promising to me prosperity, * And Kausar draught
     to thee and Eden's long delight.
Earth shows no charms, by Allah, ranking as their third, * Nor
     King who secondeth our Conquering King in might."

Wherefore his credit redoubled with al-Nasir; but, after a while, one
of his enemies maligned him to the King, alleging that there still
lurked in him a hot lust for the boy and that he ceased not to desire
him, whenever the cool northern breezes moved him, and to gnash his
teeth for having given him away. Cried the King, "Wag not thou thy
tongue at him, or I will shear off thy head." However, he wrote Abu
Amir a letter, as from the boy. to the following effect: "O my lord,
thou knowest that thou wast all and one to me and that I never ceased
from delight with thee. Albeit I am with the Sultan, yet would I choose
rather solitude with thee, but that I fear the King's majesty:
wherefore devise thou to demand me of him." This letter he sent to Abu
Amir by a little foot page, whom he enjoined to say, "This is from such
an one: the King never speaketh to him." When the Wazir read the letter
and heard the cheating message, he noted the poison draught[FN#178] and
wrote on the back of the note these couplets,

"Shall man experience-lectured ever care * Fool-like to thrust
     his head in lion's lair?
I'm none of those whose wits to love succumb * Nor witless of
     the snares my foes prepare:
Wert thou my sprite, I'd give thee loyally; * Shall sprite,
     from body sundered, backwards fare?"

When al-Nasir knew of this answer, he marvelled at the Wazir's
quickness of wit and would never again lend ear to aught of
insinuations against him. Then said he to him, "How didst thou escape
falling into the net?" And he replied, "Because my reason is
unentangled in the toils of passion." And they also tell a tale of


There lived in the time of Harun al-Rashid a man named Ahmad al-Danaf
and another Hasan Shúmán[FN#180] hight, the twain past-masters in fraud
and feints, who had done rare things in their day;  wherefore the
Caliph invested them with caftans of honour and  made them Captains of
the Watch for Baghdad (Ahmad of the  right hand and Hasan of the left
hand); and appointed to each of  them a stipend of a thousand dinars a
month and forty stalwart  men to be at their bidding. Moreover to
Calamity Ahmad was  committed the watch of the district outside the
walls. So Ahmad  and Hasan went forth in company of the Emir Khalid,
the Wali  or Chief of Police, attended each by his forty followers on
horse-back, and preceded by the Crier, crying aloud and saying, "By 
command of the Caliph! None is captain of the watch of  the right hand
but Ahmad al- Danaf and none is captain of the  watch of the left hand
but Hasan Shuman, and both are to  be obeyed when they bid and are to
be held in all honour and  worship." Now there was in the city an old
woman called Dalí­lah  the Wily, who had a daughter by name Zaynab the
Coney-catcher.  They heard the proclamation made and Zaynab said to
Dalilah,  "See, O my mother, this fellow, Ahmad al-Danaf! He came 
hither from Cairo, a fugitive, and played the double-dealer in 
Baghdad, till he got into the Caliph's company and is now become 
captain of the right hand, whilst that mangy chap Hasan Shuman  is
captain of the left hand, and each hath a table spread morning and
evening and a monthly wage of a thousand dinars; whereas we abide
unemployed and neglected in this house, without estate and without
honour, and have none to ask of us." Now Dalilah's  husband had been
town-captain of Baghdad with a monthly wage  of one thousand dinars;
but he died leaving two daughters, one  married and with a son by name
Ahmad al- Lakí­t[FN#181] or Ahmad the  Abortion; and the other called
Zaynab, a spinster. And this  Dalilah was a past mistress in all manner
of craft and trickery and double dealing; she could wile the very
dragon out of his den  and Iblis himself might have learnt deceit of
her. Her father[FN#182]  had also been governor of the carrier-pigeons
to the Caliph with a solde of one thousand dinars a month. He used to
rear the birds  to carry letters and messages, wherefore in time of
need each was  dearer to the Caliph than one of his own sons. So Zaynab
said  to her mother, "Up and play off some feint and fraud that may 
haply make us notorious"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn  of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Zaynab  thus
addressed her dam, "Up and play off some feint and fraud  which may
haply make us notorious in Baghdad, so perchance we  shall win our
father's stipend for ourselves." Replied the old  trot, "As thy head
liveth, O my daughter, I will play off higher-class rogueries in
Baghdad than ever played Calamity Ahmad or Hasan the Pestilent." So
saying, she rose and threw over her  face the Lisam-veil and donned
clothes such as the poorer Sufis  wear, petticoat-trousers falling over
her heels, and a gown of  white wool with a broad girdle. She also took
a pitcher[FN#183] and  filled it with water to the neck; after which
she set three dinars in  the mouth and stopped it up with a plug of
palm-fibre. Then she threw round her shoulder, baldrick-wise, a rosary
as big as a load  of firewood, and taking in her hand a flag, made of
parti-coloured  rags, red and yellow and green, went out, crying,
"Allah! Allah!"  with tongue celebrating the praises of the Lord,
whilst her heart galloped in the Devil's race- course, seeking how she
might play  some sharping trick upon town. She walked from street to
street,  till she came to an alley swept and watered and marble-paved, 
where she saw a vaulted gateway, with a threshold of alabaster,  and a
Moorish porter standing at the door, which was of sandalwood  plated
with brass and furnished with a ring of silver for knocker. Now this
house belonged to the Chief of the Caliph's Serjeant-ushers, a man of
great wealth in fields, houses and allowances,  called the Emir Hasan
Sharr al-Tarí­k, or Evil of the Way,  and therefor called because his
blow forewent his word. He was  married to a fair damsel,
Khátún[FN#184] hight, whom he loved and who  had made him swear, on the
night of his going in unto her, that  he would take none other to wife
over her nor lie abroad for a  single night. And so things went on till
one day, he went to the  Divan and saw that each Emir had with him a
son or two. Then  he entered the Hammam-bath and looking at his face in
the  mirror, noted that the white hairs in his beard overlay its black,
 and he said in himself, "Will not He who took thy sire bless thee 
with a son?" So he went in to his wife, in angry mood, and she said to
him, "Good evening to thee"; but he replied, "Get thee  out of my
sight: from the day I saw thee I have seen naught of  good." "How so?"
quoth she. Quoth he, "On the night of my  going in unto thee, thou
madest me swear to take no other wife  over thee, and this very day I
have seen each Emir with a son  and some with two. So I minded me of
death[FN#185]; and also that to me hath been vouchsafed neither son nor
daughter and that whoso leaveth no male hath no memory. This, then, is
the reason of my anger, for thou art barren; and knowing thee is like 
planing a rock." Cried she, "Allah's name upon thee. Indeed,  I have
worn out the mortars with beating wool and pounding drugs,[FN#186] and
I am not to blame; the barrenness is with thee, for  that thou art a
snub-nosed mule and thy sperm is weak and  watery and impregnateth not
neither getteth children." Said he,  "When I return from my journey, I
will take another wife;" and  she, "My luck is with Allah!" Then he
went out from her and  both repented of the sharp words spoken each to
other. Now as  the Emir's wife looked forth of her lattice, as she were
a Bride of  the Hoards[FN#187] for the jewellery upon her, behold,
there stood  Dalilah espying her and seeing her clad in costly clothes
and  ornaments, said to herself, "'Twould be a rare trick, O Dalilah,
to  entice yonder young lady from her husband's house and strip her  of
all her jewels and clothes and make off with the whole lot." So she
took up her stand under the windows of the Emir's house, and fell to
calling aloud upon Allah's name and saying, "Be  present, O ye Walis,
ye friends of the Lord!" Whereupon every  woman in the street looked
from her lattice and, seeing a matron  clad, after Sufi fashion, in
clothes of white wool, as she were a  pavilion of light, said, "Allah
bring us a blessing by the aidance  of this pious old person, from
whose face issueth light!" And Khatun, the wife of the Emir Hasan,
burst into tears and said to  her handmaid, "Get thee down, O Makbúlah,
and kiss the hand of  Shaykh Abú Alí­, the porter, and say to him, 'Let
yonder  Religious enter to my lady, so haply she may get a blessing of 
her.'" So she went down to the porter and kissing his hand, said to
him, "My mistress telleth thee, 'Let yonder pious old woman  come in to
me, so may I get a blessing of her'; and belike her benediction may
extend to us likewise."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundredth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the handmaid
went down and said to the porter, "Suffer yonder Religious enter to my
lady so haply she may get a blessing of her, and we too may be blessed,
one and all," the gate-keeper went up to Dalilah and kissed her hand,
but she forbade him, saying, "Away from me, lest my ablution be made
null and void.[FN#188] Thou, also, art of the attracted God-wards and
kindly  looked upon by Allah's Saints and under His especial
guardianship.  May He deliver thee from this servitude, O Abu Ali!" 
Now the Emir owed three months' wage to the porter who was straitened
thereby, but knew not how to recover his due from his  lord; so he said
to the old woman, "O my mother, give me to  drink from thy pitcher, so
I may win a blessing through thee."  She took the ewer from her
shoulder and whirled it about in air,  so that the plug flew out of its
mouth and the three dinars fell to  the ground. The porter saw them and
picked them up, saying in his mind, "Glory to God! This old woman is
one of the Saints that  have hoards at their command! It hath been
revealed to her of  me that I am in want of money for daily expenses;
so she hath  conjured me these three dinars out of the air." Then said
he to  her, "Take, O my aunt, these three dinars which fell from thy 
pitcher;" and she replied, "Away with them from me! I am of  the folk
who occupy not themselves with the things of the world,  no never! Take
them and use them for thine own benefit, in  lieu of those the Emir
oweth thee." Quoth he, "Thanks to Allah  for succour! This is of the
chapter of revelation!" Thereupon  the maid accosted her and kissing
her hand, carried her up to her mistress. She found the lady as she
were a treasure, whose guardian talisman had been loosed; and Khatun
bade her welcome and kissed her hand. Quoth she, "O my daughter, I come
not to thee save for thy weal and by Allah's will." Then Khatun set
food before her; but she said, "O my daughter, I eat  naught except of
the food of Paradise and I keep continual fast  breaking it but five
days in the year. But, O my child, I see thee  chagrined and desire
that thou tell me the cause of thy concern."  "O my mother," replied
Khatun, "I made my husband swear, on  my wedding-night, that he would
wive none but me, and he saw  others with children and longed for them
and said to me, 'Thou art  a barren thing!' I answered, 'Thou art a
mule which begetteth  not'; so he left me in anger, saying, 'When I
come back from my  journey, I will take another wife,' for he hath
villages and lands  and large allowances, and if he begat children by
another, they will possess the money and take the estates from me."
Said Dalilah, "O my daughter, knowest thou not of my master, the Shaykh
Abú al-Hamlát,[FN#189] whom if any debtor visit, Allah quitteth him his
debt, and if a barren woman, she conceiveth?" Khatun replied, "O my
mother, since the day of my wedding I have not gone forth the house,
no, not even to pay visits of condolence or congratulation." The old
woman rejoined, "O my child, I will carry thee to him and do thou cast
thy burden on him and make a vow to him: haply when thy husband shall
return from his journey and lie with thee thou shalt conceive by  him
and bear a girl or a boy: but, be it female or male, it shall  be a
dervish of the Shaykh Abu al-Hamlat." Thereupon Khatun  rose and
arrayed herself in her richest raiment, and donning all  her jewellery
said, "Keep thou an eye on the house," to her  maid, who replied, "I
hear and obey, O my lady." Then she  went down and the porter Abu Ali
met her and asked her, "Whither away, O my lady?" "I go to visit the
Shaykh Abu  al-Hamlat;" answered she; and he, "Be a year's fast
incumbent  on me! Verily yon Religious is of Allah's saints and full of
 holiness, O my lady, and she hath hidden treasure at her  command, for
she gave me three dinars of red gold and divined  my case, without my
asking her, and knew that I was in want."  Then the old woman went out
with the young lady Khatun,  saying to her, "Inshallah, O my daughter,
when thou hast visited  the Shaykh Abu al-Hamlat, there shall betide
thee solace of soul  and by leave of Almighty Allah thou shalt
conceive, and thy  husband the Emir shall love thee by the blessing of
the Shaykh  and shall never again let thee hear a despiteful word."
Quoth  Khatun, "I will go with thee to visit him, O my mother!" But 
Dalilah said to herself, "Where shall I strip her and take her  clothes
and jewellery, with the folk coming and going?" Then  she said to her,
"O my daughter, walk thou behind me, within  sight of me, for this thy
mother is a woman sorely burdened;  everyone who hath a burden casteth
it on me and all who have  pious offerings[FN#190] to make give them to
me and kiss my hand." So the young lady followed her at a distance,
whilst her anklets tinkled and her hair-coins[FN#191] clinked as she
went, till they reached  the bazar of the merchants. Presently, they
came to the shop of a  young merchant, by name Sí­dí­ Hasan who was
very handsome[FN#192]  and had no hair on his face. He saw the lady
approaching and  fell to casting stolen glances at her, which when the
old woman  saw, she beckoned to her and said, "Sit down in this shop, 
till I return to thee." Khatun obeyed her and sat down in the  shop-
front of the young merchant, who cast at her one glance of eyes that
cost him a thousand sighs. Then the old woman accosted him and saluted
him, saying, "Tell me, is not thy name Sidi Hasan, son of the merchant
Mohsin?" He replied, "Yes, who told thee my name?" Quoth she, "Folk of
good  repute direct me to thee. Know that this young lady is my 
daughter and her father was a merchant who died and left her  much
money. She is come of marriageable age and the wise say, 'Offer thy
daughter in marriage and not thy son'; and all  her life she hath not
come forth the house till this day. Now a divine warning and a command
given in secret bid me wed her to thee; so, if thou art poor, I will
give thee capital and will  open for thee instead of one shop two
shops." Thereupon quoth the young merchant to himself, "I asked Allah
for a bride, and  He hath given me three things, to wit, coin,
clothing, and coynte."  Then he continued to the old trot, "O my
mother, that where-to thou directest me is well; but this long while my
mother  saith to me, 'I wish to marry thee,' but I object replying, 'I
will  not marry except on the sight of my own eyes.'" Said Dalilah, 
"Rise and follow my steps, and I will show her to thee, naked."[FN#193]
 So he rose and took a thousand dinars, saying in himself,  "Haply we
may need to buy somewhat"—And Shahrazad  perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and First Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the old
woman said to Hasan, son of Mohsin the merchant, "Rise  up and follow
me, and I will show her naked to thee." So he  rose and took with him a
thousand dinars, saying in himself, "Haply we may need to buy somewhat
or pay the fees for drawing up the marriage contract." The old woman
bade him walk behind the young lady at a distance but within shot of
sight  and said to herself, "Where wilt thou carry the young lady and 
the merchant that thou mayest strip them both whilst his shop  is still
shut?" Then she walked on and Khatun after her,  followed by the young
merchant, till she came to a dyery, kept  by a master dyer, by name
Hajj Mohammed, a man of ill-repute;  like the colocasia[FN#194]
seller's knife cutting male and female, and  loving to eat both figs
and pomegranates.[FN#195] He heard the tinkle of  the ankle rings and,
raising his head, saw the lady and the young  man. Presently the old
woman came up to him and, after  salaming to him and sitting down
opposite him, asked him, "Art  thou not Hajj Mohammed the dyer?" He
answered, "Yes, I am  he: what dost thou want?" Quoth she, "Verily,
folks of fair  repute have directed me to thee. Look at yonder handsome
girl, my daughter, and that comely beardless youth, my son; I brought
them both up and spent much money on both of them. Now,  thou must know
that I have a big old ruinous house which I have shored up with wood,
and the builder saith to me, 'Go and live in some other place, lest
belike it fall upon thee; and when this is repaired return hither.' So
I went forth to seek me a  lodging, and people of worth directed me to
thee, and I wish to  lodge my son and daughter with thee." Quoth the
dyer in his  mind, "Verily, here is fresh butter upon cake come to
thee." But  he said to the old woman, "'Tis true I have a house and
saloon  and upper floor; but I cannot spare any part thereof, for I
want it all for guests and for the indigo- growers my clients." She
replied,  "O my son, 'twill be only for a month or two at the most,
till our  house be repaired, and we are strange folk. Let the
guest-chamber  be shared between us and thee, and by thy life, O my
son, an thou desire that thy guests be ours, we will welcome them and
eat with  them and sleep with them." Then he gave her the keys, one big
 and one small and one crooked, saying to her "The big key is that of
the house, the crooked one that of the saloon and the little  one that
of the upper floor." So Dalilah took the keys and fared  on, followed
by the lady who forwent the young merchant, till  she came to the lane
wherein was the house. She opened the  door and entered, introducing
the damsel to whom said she, "O  my daughter, this (pointing to the
saloon) is the lodging of the Shaykh Abu al-Hamlat; but go thou into
the upper floor and  loose thy outer veil and wait till I come to
thee." So she went  up and sat down. Presently appeared the young
merchant, whom  Dalilah carried into the saloon, saying, "Sit down,
whilst I fetch  my daughter and show her to thee." So he sat down and
the old trot went up to Khatun who said to her, "I wish to visit the
Shaykh, before the folk come." Replied the beldame, "O my daughter, we
fear for thee." Asked Khatun, "Why so?" and Dalilah answered, "Because
here is a son of mine, a natural who  knoweth not summer from winter,
but goeth ever naked. He is  the Shaykh's deputy and, if he saw a girl
like thee come to visit  his chief, he would snatch her earrings and
tear her ears and rend  her silken robes.[FN#196] So do thou doff thy
jewellery and clothes and  I will keep them for thee, till thou hast
made thy pious visitation."  Accordingly the damsel did off her outer
dress and jewels and  gave them to the old woman, who said, "I will lay
them for thee  on the Shaykh's curtain, that a blessing may betide
thee." Then  she went out, leaving the lady in her shift and
petticoat-trousers,  and hid the clothes and jewels in a place on the
staircase; after which she betook herself to the young merchant, whom
she found impatiently awaiting the girl, and he cried, "Where is thy
daughter, that I may see her?" But she smote palm on breast and he said
"What aileth thee?" Quoth she, "Would there  were no such thing as the
ill neighbour and the envious! They  saw thee enter the house with me
and asked me of thee; and I said, 'This is a bridegroom I have found
for my daughter.' So they envied me on thine account and said to my
girl, 'Is thy mother  tired of keeping thee, that she marrieth thee to
a leper?' There-upon I swore to her that she should not see thee save
naked."  Quoth he, "I take refuge with Allah from the envious," and
baring  his fore-arm, showed her that it was like silver. Said she,
"Have  no fear; thou shalt see her naked, even as she shall see thee 
naked;" and he said, "Let her come and look at me. Then he  put off his
pelisse and sables and his girdle and dagger and the  rest of his
raiment, except his shirt and bag-trousers, and would  have laid the
purse of a thousand dinars with them, but Dalilah  cried, 'Give them to
me, that I may take care of them." So she took them and fetching the
girl's clothes and jewellery shouldered the whole and locking the door
upon them went her ways.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Second Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the old
woman had taken the property of the young merchant and the damsel and
wended her ways, having locked the door upon them, she deposited her
spoils with a druggist of her acquaintance  and returned to the dyer,
whom she found sitting, awaiting her.  Quoth he, "Inshallah, the house
pleaseth thee?"; and quoth she,  "There is a blessing in it; and I go
now to fetch porters to carry  hither our goods and furniture. But my
children would have me  bring them a panade with meat; so do thou take
this dinar and  buy the dish and go and eat the morning meal with
them." Asked  the dyer, "Who shall guard the dyery meanwhile and the
people's goods that be therein?"; and the old woman answered, "Thy 
lad!" "So be it," rejoined he, and taking a dish and cover, went  out
to do her bidding. So far concerning the dyer who will again  be
mentioned in the tale; but as regards the old woman, she fetched the
clothes and jewels she had left with the druggist and  going back to
the dyery, said to the lad, "Run after thy master, and I will not stir
hence till you both return." "To hear is to  obey," answered he and
went away, while she began to collect all  the customers' goods.
Presently, there came up an ass-driver, a  scavenger, who had been out
of work for a week and who was an  Hashish-eater to boot; and she
called him, saying, "Hither, O  donkey-boy!" So he came to her and she
asked, "Knowest thou my son the dyer?"; whereto he answered, "Yes, I
know him."  Then she said, "The poor fellow is insolvent and loaded
with  debts, and as often as he is put in prison, I set him free. Now 
we wish to see him declared bankrupt and I am going to return  the
goods to their owners; so do thou lend me thine ass to carry  the load
and receive this dinar to its hire. When I am gone, take  the handsaw
and empty out the vats and jars and break them, so  that if there come
an officer from the Kází­'s court, he may find  nothing in the dyery."
Quoth he, "I owe the Hajj a kindness  and will do something for Allah's
love." So she laid the things  on the ass and, the Protector protecting
her, made for her own house; so that she arrived there in safety and
went in to her daughter Zaynab, who said to her, "O my mother, my heart
bath been with thee! What hast thou done by way of roguery?" Dalilah
replied, "I have played off four tricks on four wights; the  wife of
the Serjeant-usher, a young merchant, a dyer and an ass-driver, and
have brought thee all their spoil on the donkey-boy's  beast." Cried
Zaynab, "O my mother, thou wilt never more be  able to go about the
town, for fear of the Serjeant-usher, whose  wife's raiment and
jewellery thou hast taken, and the merchant  whom thou hast stripped
naked, and the dyer whose customers'  goods thou hast stolen and the
owner of the ass." Rejoined the  old woman, "Pooh, my girl! I reck not
of them, save the donkey-boy, who knoweth me." Meanwhile the dyer
bought the meat-panade and set out for the house, followed by his
servant with the  food on head. On his way thither, he passed his shop,
where he  found the donkey- boy breaking the vats and jars and saw that
 there was neither stuff nor liquor left in them and that the dyery 
was in ruins. So he said to him, "Hold thy hand, O ass-driver;"  and
the donkey-boy desisted and cried, "Praised be Allah for thy safety, O
master! Verily my heart was with thee." "Why so?" "Thou art become
bankrupt and they have filed a docket of thine  insolvency." "Who told
thee this?" "Thy mother told me, and bade me break the jars and empty
the vats, that the Kazi's officers  might find nothing in the shop, if
they should come." "Allah  confound the far One!"[FN#197] cried the
dyer; "My mother died long  ago." And he beat his breast, exclaiming,
"Alas, for the loss of  my goods and those of the folk!" The donkey-boy
also wept  and ejaculated, "Alas, for the loss of my ass!"; and he said
to  the dyer, "Give me back my beast which thy mother stole from  me."
The dyer laid hold of him by the throat and fell to buffeting  him,
saying, "Bring me the old woman;" whilst the other buffeted  him in
return saying, "Give me back my beast." So they beat  and cursed each
other, till the folk collected around them—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Third Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the dyer
caught hold of the donkey-boy and the donkey-boy caught hold of the
dyer and they beat and cursed each other till the folk  collected round
them and one of them asked, "What is the matter,  O Master Mohammed?"
The ass-driver answered, "I will tell thee the tale," and related to
them his story, saying, "I deemed I  was doing the dyer a good turn;
but, when he saw me he beat his  breast and said, 'My mother is dead.'
And now, I for one require  my ass of him, it being he who hath put
this trick on me, that he  might make me lose my beast." Then said the
folk to the dyer,  "O Master Mohammed, dost thou know this matron, that
thou didst entrust her with the dyery and all therein?" And he 
replied, "I know her not; but she took lodgings with me to-day,  she
and her son and daughter." Quoth one, "In my judgment,  the dyer is
bound to indemnify the ass- driver." Quoth another,  "Why so?"
"Because," replied the first, "he trusted not the old Woman nor gave
her his ass save only because he saw that the  dyer had entrusted her
with the dyery and its contents." And a  third said, "O master, since
thou hast lodged her with thee, it  behoveth thee to get the man back
his ass." Then they made for  the house, and the tale will come round
to them again. Mean-while, the young merchant remained awaiting the old
woman's  coming with her daughter, but she came not nor did her
daughter;  whilst the young lady in like manner sat expecting her
return  with leave from her son, the God-attended one, the Shaykh's 
deputy, to go in to the holy presence. So weary of waiting, she  rose
to visit the Shaykh by herself and went down into the saloon, where she
found the young merchant, who said to her, "Come hither! where is thy
mother, who brought me to marry thee?" She replied, "My mother is dead,
art thou the old woman's son, the ecstatic, the deputy of the Shaykh
Abu al-Hamlat?" Quoth he, "The swindling old trot is no mother of mine;
she hath cheated me and taken my clothes and a thousand dinars." Quoth
Khatun, "And me also hath she swindled for she brought me to see the
Shaykh Abu al-Hamlat and in lieu of so doing she hath stripped me."
Thereupon he, "I look to thee to make good my clothes and my thousand
dinars;" and she, "I look to thee to make good my clothes and
jewellery." And, behold, at this moment in came the dyer and seeing
them both stripped of their raiment, said to them, "Tell me where your
mother is." So the young lady related all that had befallen her and the
young merchant related all that had betided him, and the Master-dyer
exclaimed, "Alas, for the loss of my goods and those of the folk!"; 
and the ass-driver ejaculated, "Alas, for my ass! Give me, O  dyer, my
ass!" Then said the dyer, "This old woman is a  sharper. Come forth,
that I may lock the door." Quoth the young merchant, "'Twere a disgrace
to thee that we should enter  thy house dressed and go forth from it
undressed." So the dyer  clad him and the damsel and sent her back to
her house where we  shall find her after the return of her husband.
Then he shut the  dyery and said to the young merchant, "Come, let us
go and  search for the old woman and hand her over to the Wali,[FN#198]
the Chief of Police." So they and the ass-man repaired to the house  of
the master of police and made their complaint to him. Quoth  he, "O
folk, what want ye?" and when they told him he rejoined,  "How many old
women are there not in the town! Go ye and  seek for her and lay hands
on her and bring her to me, and I will  torture her for you and make
her confess." So they sought for  her all round the town; and an
account of them will presently be given.[FN#199] As for old Dalilah the
Wily, she said, "I have a mind to  play off another trick," to her
daughter who answered, "O my  mother, I fear for thee;" but the beldam
cried, "I am like the bean  husks which fall, proof against fire and
water." So she rose, and  donning a slave-girl's dress of such as serve
people of condition,  went out to look for some one to defraud.
Presently she came to  a by-street, spread with carpets and lighted
with hanging lamps,  and heard a noise of singing-women and drumming of
tambourines.  Here she saw a handmaid bearing on her shoulder a boy,
clad in trousers laced with silver and a little Abá-cloak of velvet,
with a  pearl embroidered Tarbush-cap on his head, and about his neck a
 collar of gold set with jewels. Now the house belonged to the Provost
of the Merchants of Baghdad, and the boy was his son.  He had a virgin
daughter, to boot, who was promised in marriage,  and it was her
betrothal they were celebrating that day. There  was with her mother a
company of noble dames and singing-women, and whenever she went
upstairs or down, the boy clung  to her. So she called the slave-girl
and said to her, "Take thy  young master and play with him, till the
company break up."  Seeing this, Dalilah asked the handmaid, "What
festivities are  these in your mistress's house;" and was answered "She
celebrates  her daughter's betrothal this day, and she hath
singing-women  with her." Quoth the old woman to herself, "O Dalilah,
the thing to do is to spirit away this boy from the maid,"—And 
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her  permitted

When it was the Seven Hundred and Fourth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the old trot
said to herself, "O Dalilah, the thing to do is to spirit  away this
boy from the maid!" she began crying out, "O disgrace! O ill luck!"
Then pulling out a brass token, resembling  a dinar, she said to the
maid, who was a simpleton, "Take this ducat and go in to thy mistress
and say to her, 'Umm  al-Khayr rejoiceth with thee and is beholden to
thee for thy  favours, and on the day of assembly she and her daughters
will  visit thee and handsel the tiring-women with the usual gifts.'" 
Said the girl, "O my mother, my young master here catcheth hold of his
mamma, whenever he seeth her;" and she replied "Give  him to me, whilst
thou goest in and comest back." So she gave  her the child and taking
the token, went in; whereupon Dalilah  made off with the boy to a
by-lane, where she stripped him of his  clothes and jewels, saying to
herself, "O Dalilah, 'twould indeed  be the finest of tricks, even as
thou hast cheated the maid and taken the boy from her, so now to carry
on the game and pawn  him for a thousand dinars." So she repaired to
the jewel-bazar,  where she saw a Jew goldsmith seated with a cage full
of jewellery before him, and said to herself, "'Twould be a rare trick
to chouse this Jew fellow and get a thousand gold pieces worth of
jewellery from him and leave the boy in pledge for it." Presently  the
Jew looked at them and seeing the boy with the old woman,  knew him for
the son of the Provost of the Merchants. Now the  Israelite was a man
of great wealth, but would envy his neighbour  if he sold and himself
did not sell; so espying Dalilah, he said to  her, "What seekest thou,
O my mistress?" She asked, "Art  thou Master Azariah[FN#200] the Jew?"
having first enquired his name  of others; and he answered, "Yes."
Quoth she, "This boy's  sister, daughter of the Shahbandar of the
Merchants, is a promised  bride, and to- day they celebrate her
betrothal; and she hath need  of jewellery. So give me two pair of gold
ankle-rings, a brace of gold bracelets, and pearl ear-drops, with a
girdle, a poignard and  a seal-ring." He brought them out and she took
of him a thousand  dinars' worth of jewellery, saying, "I will take
these ornaments on approval; and whatso pleaseth them, they will keep
and I will  bring thee the price and leave this boy with thee till
then." He  said, "Be it as thou wilt!" So she took the jewellery and
made  off to her own house, where her daughter asked her how the trick 
had sped. She told her how she had taken and stripped the  Shahbandar's
boy, and Zaynab said, "Thou wilt never be able to  walk abroad again in
the town." Meanwhile, the maid went in  to her mistress and said to
her, "O my lady, Umm al-Khayr  saluteth thee and rejoiceth with thee
and on assembly-day she  will come, she and her daughters, and give the
customary  presents." Quoth her mistress, "Where is thy young master?" 
Quoth the slave-girl, "I left him with her lest he cling to thee,  and
she gave me this, as largesse for the singing-women." So  the lady said
to the chief of the singers, "Take thy money;" and  she took it and
found it a brass counter; whereupon the lady cried  to the maid, "Get
thee down, O whore, and look to thy young  master." Accordingly, she
went down and finding neither boy  nor old woman, shrieked aloud and
fell on her face. Their joy was changed into annoy, and behold, the
Provost came in, when his wife told him all that had befallen and he
went out in quest of the  child, whilst the other merchants also fared
forth and each sought  his own road. Presently, the Shahbandar, who had
looked every-where, espied his son seated, naked, in the Jew's shop and
said to  the owner, "This is my son." "'Tis well," answered the Jew. So
 he took him up, without asking for his clothes, of the excess of his 
joy at finding him; but the Jew laid hold of him, saying, "Allah 
succour the Caliph against thee!"[FN#201] The Provost asked, "What 
aileth thee, O Jew?"; and he answered, "Verily the old woman  took of
me a thousand dinars' worth of jewellery for thy daughter,  and left
this lad in pledge for the price; and I had not trusted her, but that
she offered to leave the child whom I knew for thy  Son." Said the
Provost, "My daughter needeth no jewellery, give  me the boy's
clothes." Thereupon the Jew shrieked out, "Come  to my aid, O Moslems!"
but at that moment up came the dyer  and the ass-man and the young
merchant, who were going about, seeking the old woman, and enquired the
cause of their jangle. So they told them the case and they said, "This
old woman is a cheat, who hath cheated us before you." Then they
recounted to them how she had dealt with them, and the Provost said,
"Since I have found my son, be his clothes his ransom! If I come upon
the old woman, I will require them of her." And he carried the child
home to his mother, who rejoiced in his safety. Then the Jew said to
the three others "Whither go ye?"; and they answered, "We go to look
for her." Quoth the Jew, "Take me with you," presently adding, "Is
there any one of you knoweth her?" The donkey-boy cried, "I know her;"
and the Jew said, "If we all go forth together, we shall never catch
her; for she will  flee from us. Let each take a different road, and be
our rendezvous  at the shop of Hajj Mas'úd, the Moorish barber." They 
agreed to this and set off, each in a different direction. Presently, 
Dalilah sallied forth again to play her tricks and the ass-driver met
her and knew her. So he caught hold of her and said to  her, "Woe to
thee! Hast thou been long at this trade?" She  asked, "What aileth
thee?"; and he answered, "Give me back  my ass." Quoth she, "Cover what
Allah covereth, O my son!  Dost thou seek thine ass and the people's
things?" Quoth he,  "I want my ass; that's all;" and quoth she, "I saw
that thou  wast poor: so I deposited thine ass for thee with the
Moorish  barber. Stand off, whilst I speak him fair, that he may give
thee  the beast." So she went up to the Maghrabi and kissed his hand 
and shed tears. He asked her what ailed her and she said, "O my son,
look at my boy who standeth yonder. He was ill and  exposed himself to
the air, which injured his intellect. He used  to buy asses and now, if
he stand he saith nothing but, My ass!  if he sit he crieth, My ass!
and if he walk he crieth, My ass!  Now I have been told by a certain
physician that his mind is  disordered and that nothing will cure him
but drawing two of his grinders and cauterising him twice on either
temple. So do thou  take this dinar and call him to thee, saying,
'Thine ass is with me.'" Said the barber, "May I fast for a year, if I
do not give him  his ass in his fist!" Now he had with him two
journeymen, so he  said to one of them "Go, heat the irons." Then the
old woman  went her way and the barber called to the
donkey-boy,[FN#202] saying,  "Thine ass is with me, good fellow! come
and take him, and as  thou livest, I will give him into thy palm." So
he came to him  and the barber carried him into a dark room, where he
knocked  him down and the journeymen bound him hand and foot. Then  the
Maghrabi arose and pulled out two of his grinders and fired  him on
either temple; after which he let him go, and he rose and  said, "O
Moor, why hast thou used me with this usage?" Quoth  the barber, "Thy
mother told me that thou hadst taken cold whilst ill, and hadst lost
thy reason, so that, whether sitting or standing  or walking, thou
wouldst say nothing but My ass! So here is  thine ass in thy fist."
Said the other, "Allah requite thee for  pulling out my teeth." Then
the barber told him all that the old  woman had related and he
exclaimed, "Allah torment her!"; and the twain left the shop and went
out, disputing. When the barber  returned, he found his booth empty,
for, whilst he was absent, the  old woman had taken all that was
therein and made off with it to  her daughter, whom she acquainted with
all that had befallen and  all she had done. The barber, seeing his
place plundered, caught  hold of the donkey-boy and said to him, "Bring
me thy mother."  But he answered, saying, "She is not my mother; she is
a sharper  who hath cozened much people and stolen my ass." And lo! at 
this moment up came the dyer and the Jew and the young  merchant, and
seeing the Moorish barber holding on to the ass-driver who was fired on
both temples, they said to him, "What  hath befallen thee, O
donkey-boy?" So he told them all that  had betided him and the barber
did the like; and the others in turn related to the Moor the tricks the
old woman had played them. Then he shut up his shop and went with them
to the office of the Police-master to whom they said, "We look to thee
for our case and our coin."[FN#203] Quoth the Wali, "And how  many old
women are there not in Baghdad! Say me, doth any of you know her?"
Quoth the ass-man, "I do; so give me ten  of thine officers." He gave
them half a score archers and they all five went out, followed by the
sergeants, and patrolled the  city, till they met the old woman, when
they laid hands on her  and carrying her to the house of the Chief of
Police, stood waiting  under his office windows till he should come
forth. Presently,  the warders fell asleep, for excess of watching with
their chief,  and old Dalilah feigned to follow their example, till the
ass-man  and his fellows slept likewise, when she stole away from them
and, going in to the Wali's Harim, kissed the hand of the mistress  of
the house and asked her "Where is the Chief of Police?"  The lady
answered, "He is asleep; what wouldst thou with  him?" Quoth Dalilah,
"My husband is a merchant of chattels  and gave me five Mamelukes to
sell, whilst he went on a journey. The Master of Police met me and
bought them of me for a  thousand dinars and two hundred for myself,
saying, 'Bring  them to my house.' So I have brought them."—And 
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Seven Hundred and Fifth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the old
woman, entering the Harim of the Police-Master, said to his  wife,
"Verily the Wali bought of me five slaves for one thousand  ducats and
two hundred for myself, saying, 'Bring them to my  quarters.' So I have
brought them." Hearing the old woman's  story she believed it and asked
her, "Where are the slaves?"  Dalilah replied, "O my lady, they are
asleep under the palace  window"; whereupon the dame looked out and
seeing the Moorish  barber clad in a Mameluke habit and the young
merchant as he  were a drunken Mameluke[FN#204] and the Jew and the
dyer and the ass-driver as they were shaven Mamelukes, said in herself,
"Each  of these white slaves is worth more than a thousand dinars." So 
she opened her chest and gave the old woman the thousand ducats, 
saying, "Fare thee forth now and come back anon; when my  husband
waketh, I will get thee the other two hundred dinars from  him."
Answered the old woman, "O my lady, an hundred of them  are thine,
under the sherbet-gugglet whereof thou drinkest,[FN#205] and the other
hundred do thou keep for me against I come back,"  presently adding,
"Now let me out by the private door." So she  let her out, and the
Protector protected her and she made her way  home to her daughter, to
whom she related how she had gotten a  thousand gold pieces and sold
her five pursuers into slavery,  ending with, "O my daughter, the one
who troubleth me most is  the ass-driver, for he knoweth me." Said
Zaynab, "O my mother,  abide quiet awhile and let what thou hast done
suffice thee, for the crock shall not always escape the shock." When
the Chief of Police awoke, his wife said to him, "I give thee joy of
the five  slaves thou hast bought of the old woman." Asked he, "What
slaves?" And she answered, "Why dost thou deny it to me?  Allah
willing, they shall become like thee people of condition."  Quoth he,
"As my head liveth, I have bought no slaves! Who  saith this?" Quoth
she, "The old woman, the brokeress, from  whom thou boughtest them; and
thou didst promise her a thousand dinars for them and two hundred for
herself." Cried  he, "Didst thou give her the money?" And she replied,
"Yes;  for I saw the slaves with my own eyes, and on each is a suit of 
clothes worth a thousand dinars; so I sent out to bid the sergeants 
have an eye to them." The Wali went out and, seeing the five 
plaintiffs, said to the officers, "Where are the five slaves we bought
for a thousand dinars of the old woman?" Said they, "There  are no
slaves here; only these five men, who found the old woman,  and seized
her and brought her hither. We fell asleep, whilst  waiting for thee,
and she stole away and entered the Harim.  Presently out came a maid
and asked us, 'Are the five with you  with whom the old woman came?';
and we answered, 'Yes.'"  Cried the Master of Police, "By Allah, this
is the biggest of  swindles!"; and the five men said, "We look to thee
for our  goods." Quoth the Wali, "The old woman, your mistress, sold 
you to me for a thousand gold pieces." Quoth they, "That were not
allowed of Allah; we are free-born men and may not be  sold, and we
appeal from thee to the Caliph." Rejoined the Master  of Police, "None
showed her the way to the house save you, and I will sell you to the
galleys for two hundred dinars apiece." Just  then, behold, up came the
Emir Hasan Sharr al-Tarik who, on his  return from his journey, had
found his wife stripped of her clothes and jewellery and heard from her
all that had passed; whereupon  quoth he, "The Master of Police shall
answer me this" and  repairing to him, said "Dost thou suffer old women
to go round  about the town and cozen folk of their goods? This is thy
duty  and I look to thee for my wife's property." Then said he to the 
five men, "What is the case with you?" So they told him their  stories
and he said, "Ye are wronged men," and turning to the  Master of
Police, asked him, "Why dost thou arrest them?"  Answered he, "None
brought the old wretch to my house save  these five, so that she took a
thousand dinars of my money and sold them to my women." Whereupon the
five cried, "O Emir  Hasan, be thou our advocate in this cause." Then
said the Master  of Police to the Emir, "Thy wife's goods are at my
charge and I  will be surety for the old woman. But which of you
knoweth  her?" They cried, "We all know her: send ten apparitors with 
us, and we will take her." So he gave them ten men, and the ass-driver
said to them, "Follow me, for I should know her with blue
eyes."[FN#206] Then they fared forth and lo! they met old Dalilah 
coming out of a by-street: so they at once laid hands on her and 
brought her to the office of the Wali who asked her, "Where are  the
people's goods?" But she answered, saying, "I have neither  gotten them
nor seen them." Then he cried to the gaoler, "Take  her with thee and
clap her in gaol till the morning;" but he replied,  "I will not take
her nor will I imprison her lest she play a trick  on me and I be
answerable for her." So the Master of Police  mounted and rode out with
Dalilah and the rest to the bank of the  Tigris, where he bade the
lamp-lighter crucify her by her hair.  He drew her up by the pulley and
bound her on the cross; after which the Master of Police set ten men to
guard her and went home. Presently, the night fell down and sleep
overcame the watchmen. Now a certain Badawi had heard one man say to a
friend, "Praise be to Allah for thy safe return! Where hast thou  been
all this time?" Replied the other, "In Baghdad where I  broke my fast
on honey-fritters."[FN#207] Quoth the Badawi to himself "Needs must I
go to Baghdad and eat honey- fritters therein"; for  in all his life he
had never entered Baghdad nor seen fritters of the  sort. So he mounted
his stallion and rode on towards Baghdad,  saying in his mind, "'Tis a
fine thing to eat honey-fritters! On the  honour of an Arab, I will
break my fast with honey-fritters and  naught else!"—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and  ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Sixth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the wild  Arab
mounted horse and made for Baghdad saying in his mind,  "'Tis a fine
thing to eat honey-fritters! On the honour of an  Arab I will break my
fast with honey-fritters and naught else;"  and he rode on till he came
to the place where Dalilah was  crucified and she heard him utter these
words. So he went up to her and said to her, "What art thou?" Quoth
she, "I throw  myself on thy protection, O Shaykh of the Arabs!" and
quoth  he, "Allah indeed protect thee! But what is the cause of thy 
crucifixion?" Said she, "I have an enemy, an oilman, who frieth 
fritters, and I stopped to buy some of him, when I chanced to spit  and
my spittle fell on the fritters. So he complained of me to the Governor
who commanded to crucify me, saying, 'I adjudge  that ye take ten
pounds of honey-fritters and feed her therewith  upon the cross. If she
eat them, let her go, but if not, leave her hanging.' And my stomach
will not brook sweet things." Cried the Badawi, "By the honour of the
Arabs, I departed not the camp but that I might taste of
honey-fritters! I will eat them for thee." Quoth she, "None may eat
them, except he be hung up in my place." So he fell into the trap and
unbound her; whereupon she bound him in her stead, after she had
stripped him  of his clothes and turband and put them on; then covering
herself  with his burnouse and mounting his horse, she rode to her
house, where Zaynab asked her, "What meaneth this plight?"; and she 
answered, "They crucified me;" and told her all that had befallen  her
with the Badawi. This is how it fared with her; but as regards  the
watchmen, the first who woke roused his companions and they  saw that
the day had broken. So one of them raised his eyes  and cried,
"Dalilah." Replied the Badawi, "By Allah! I have  not eaten all night.
Have ye brought the honey-fritters?" All  exclaimed, "This is a man and
a Badawi, and one of them  asked him, "O Badawi, where is Dalilah and
who loosed her?"  He answered, "'Twas I; she shall not eat the
honey-fritters against  her will; for her soul abhorreth them." So they
knew that the  Arab was ignorant of her case, whom she had cozened, and
said  to one another, "Shall we flee or abide the accomplishment of
that which Allah hath written for us?" As they were talking, up came 
the Chief of Police, with all the folk whom the old woman had  cheated,
and said to the guards, "Arise, loose Dalilah." Quoth  the Badawi, "We
have not eaten to-night. Hast thou brought the honey-fritters?"
Whereupon the Wali raised his eyes to the cross  and seeing the Badawi
hung up in the stead of the old woman,  said to the watchmen, "What is
this?" "Pardon, O our lord!"  "Tell me what hath happened" "We were
weary with watching  with thee on guard and , 'Dalilah is crucified.'
So we fell asleep, and when we awoke, we found the Badawi hung up in
her  room; and we are at thy mercy." "O folk, Allah's pardon be  upon
you! She is indeed a clever cheat!" Then they unbound  the Badawi, who
laid hold of the Master of Police, saying, "Allah  succour the Caliph
against thee! I look to none but thee for my horse and clothes!" So the
Wali questioned him and he told  him what had passed between Dalilah
and himself. The magistrate  marvelled and asked him, "Why didst thou
release her?";  and the Badawi answered, "I knew not that she was a
felon."  Then said the others, "O Chief of Police, we look to thee in
the matter of our goods; for we delivered the old woman into thy  hands
and she was in thy guard; and we cite thee before the  Divan of the
Caliph." Now the Emir Hasan had gone up to the  Divan, when in came the
Wali with the Badawi and the five others, saying, "Verily, we are
wronged men!" "Who hath wronged  you?" asked the Caliph; so each came
forward in turn and told  his story, after which said the Master of
Police, "O Commander  of the Faithful, the old woman cheated me also
and sold me these five men as slaves for a thousand dinars, albeit they
are free-born."  Quoth the Prince of True Believers, "I take upon
myself all that  you have lost"; adding to the Master of Police, "I
charge thee  with the old woman." But he shook his collar, saying, "O
Commander  of the Faithful, I will not answer for her; for, after I had
 hung her on the cross, she tricked this Badawi and, when he loosed 
her, she tied him up in her room and made off with his clothes and 
horse." Quoth the Caliph, "Whom but thee shall I charge with  her?";
and quoth the Wali, "Charge Ahmad al-Danaf, for he  hath a thousand
dinars a month and one-and-forty followers, at a monthly wage of an
hundred dinars each." So the Caliph said, "Harkye, Captain Ahmad!" "At
thy service, O Commander of  the Faithful," said he; and the Caliph
cried, "I charge thee to bring the old woman before us." Replied Ahmad,
"I will answer for her." Then the Caliph kept the Badawi and the five
with him,—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying 
her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Seventh Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Caliph said to Calamity Ahmad, "I charge thee to bring the old woman
before us," he said, "I will answer for her O Commander  of the
Faithful!" Then the Caliph kept the Badawi and  the five with him,
whilst Ahmad and his men went down to their hall,[FN#208] saying to one
another, "How shall we lay hands on her,  seeing that there are many
old women in the town?" And quoth  Ahmad to Hasan Shuman, "What
counsellest thou?" Whereupon  quoth one of them, by name Ali Kitf al-
Jamal,[FN#209] to Al-Danaf, "Of  what dost thou take counsel with Hasan
Shuman? Is the Pestilent  one any great shakes?" Said Hasan, "O Ali,
why dost thou disparage me? By the Most Great Name, I will not company 
with thee at this time!"; and he rose and went out in wrath.  Then said
Ahmad, "O my braves, let every sergeant take ten men,  each to his own
quarter and search for Dalilah." All did his  bidding, Ali included,
and they said, "Ere we disperse let us agree  to rendezvous in the
quarter Al-Kalkh." It was noised abroad  in the city that Calamity
Ahmad had undertaken to lay hands on  Dalilah the Wily, and Zaynab said
to her, "O my mother, an thou  be indeed a trickstress, do thou befool
Ahmad al-Danaf and his company." Answered Dalilah, "I fear none save
Hasan Shuman;" and Zaynab said, "By the life of my browlock, I will
assuredly get thee the clothes of all the one-and-forty." Then she
dressed  and veiled herself and going to a certain druggist, who had a 
saloon with two doors, salamed to him and gave him an ashrafi  and said
to him, "Take this gold piece as a douceur for thy saloon  and let it
to me till the end of the day." So he gave her the  keys and she
fetched carpets and so forth on the stolen ass and furnishing the
place, set on each raised pavement a tray of meat  and wine. Then she
went out and stood at the door, with her  face unveiled and behold, up
came Ali Kitf al-Jamal and his  men. She kissed his hand; and he fell
in love with her, seeing  her to be a handsome girl, and said to her,
"What dost thou want?" Quoth she, "Art thou Captain Ahmad al-Danaf?"; 
and quoth he, "No, but I am of his company and my name is  Ali
Camel-shoulder." Asked she, "Whither fare you?"; and he  answered, "We
go about in quest of a sharkish old woman, who hath stolen folk's good,
and we mean to lay hands on her. But  who art thou and what is thy
business?" She replied, "My  father was a taverner at Mosul and he died
and left me much  money. So I came hither, for fear of the Dignities,
and asked  the people who would protect me, to which they replied,
'None  but Ahmad al-Danaf.'" Said the men, "From this day forth,  thou
art under his protection"; and she replied, "Hearten me  by eating a
bit and drinking a sup of water."[FN#210] They consented  and entering,
ate and drank till they were drunken, when she drugged them with Bhang
and stripped them of their clothes and arms; and on like wise she did
with the three other companions.  Presently, Calamity Ahmad went out to
look for Dalilah, but  found her not, neither set eyes on any of his
followers, and went  on till he came to the door where Zaynab was
standing. She  kissed his hand and he looked on her and fell in love
with her.  Quoth she, "Art thou Captain Ahmad al- Danaf?"; and quoth
he,  "Yes: who art thou?" She replied, "I am a stranger from  Mosul. My
father was a vintner at that place and he died and  left me much money
wherewith I came to this city, for fear of the  powers that be, and
opened this tavern. The Master of Police  hath imposed a tax on me, but
it is my desire to put myself under thy protection and pay thee what
the police would take of me, for  thou hast the better right to it."
Quoth he, "Do not pay him  aught: thou shalt have my protection and
welcome." Then quoth  she, "Please to heal my heart and eat of my
victual," So he  entered and ate and drank wine, till he could not sit
upright, when  she drugged him and took his clothes and arms. Then she
loaded her purchase on the Badawi's horse and the donkey-boy's ass and 
made off with it, after she had aroused Ali Kitf al- Jamal.
Camel-shoulder awoke and found himself naked and saw Ahmad and his  men
drugged and stripped: so he revived them with the counter-drug and they
awoke and found themselves naked. Quoth Calamity  Ahmad, "O lads, what
is this? We were going to catch her,  and lo! this strumpet hath caught
us! How Hasan Shuman will  rejoice over us! But we will wait till it is
dark and then go away."  Meanwhile Pestilence Hasan said to the
hall-keeper, "Where are  the men?"; and as he asked, up they came
naked; and he recited  these two couplets[FN#211],

"Men in their purposes are much alike, * But in their issues
     difference comes to light:
Of men some wise are, others simple souls; * As of the stars
     some dull, some pearly bright.

Then he looked at them and asked, "Who hath played you this trick and
made you naked?"; and they answered, "We went in quest of an old woman,
and a pretty girl stripped us." Quoth Hasan, "She hath done right
well." They asked, "Dost thou know her?"; and he answered, "Yes, I know
her and the old trot too." Quoth they, "What shall we say to the
Caliph?"; and quoth he, "O Danaf, do thou shake thy collar before him,
and he  will say, 'Who is answerable for her'; and if he ask why thou 
hast not caught her; say thou, 'We know her not; but charge Hasan
Shuman with her.' And if he give her into my charge, I  will lay hands
on her." So they slept that night and on the  morrow they went up to
the Caliph's Divan and kissed ground  before him. Quoth he, "Where is
the old woman, O Captain  Ahmad?" But he shook his collar. The Caliph
asked him why  he did so, and he answered, "I know her not; but do thou
charge  Hasan Shuman to lay hands on her, for he knoweth her and her 
daughter also." Then Hasan interceded for her with the Caliph,  saying,
"Indeed, she hath not played off these tricks, because she  coveted the
folk's stuff, but to show her cleverness and that of her  daughter, to
the intent that thou shouldst continue her husband's  stipend to her
and that of her father to her daughter. So an thou  wilt spare her life
I will fetch her to thee." Cried the Caliph,  "By the life of my
ancestors, if she restore the people's goods, I will pardon her on
thine intercession!" And said the Pestilence,  "Give me a pledge, O
Prince of True Believers!" Whereupon Al-Rashid gave him the kerchief of
pardon. So Hasan repaired  to Dalilah's house and called to her. Her
daughter Zaynab  answered him and he asked her, "Where is thy mother?"
"Upstairs," she answered; and he said, "Bid her take the people's 
goods and come with me to the presence of the Caliph; for I  have
brought her the kerchief of pardon, and if she will not come  with a
good grace, let her blame only herself." So Dalilah came  down and
tying the kerchief about her neck gave him the people's  goods on the
donkey-boy's ass and the Badawi's horse. Quoth  he, "There remain the
clothes of my Chief and his men"; and  quoth she, "By the Most Great
Name, 'twas not I who stripped them!" Rejoined Hasan, "Thou sayst
sooth, it was thy daughter  Zaynab's doing, and this was a good turn
she did thee." Then he  carried her to the Divan and laying the
people's goods and stuff  before the Caliph, set the old trot in his
presence. As soon as he  saw her, he bade throw her down on the carpet
of blood, whereat  she cried, "I cast myself on thy protection, O
Shuman."' So he rose and kissing the Caliph's hands, said, "Pardon, O
Commander  of the Faithful! Indeed, thou gavest me the kerchief of
pardon."  Said the Prince of True Believers, "I pardon her for thy
sake:  come hither, O old woman; what is thy name?" "My name is  Wily
Dalilah," answered she, and the Caliph said "Thou art  indeed crafty
and full of guile." Whence she was dubbed Dalilah  the Wily One. Then
quoth he, "Why hast thou played all these  tricks on the folk and
wearied our hearts?" and quoth she, "I did  it not of lust for their
goods, but because I had heard of the  tricks which Ahmad al-Danaf and
Hasan Shuman played in  Baghdad and said to myself, 'I too will do the
like.' And now  I have returned the folk their goods." But the
ass-driver rose  and said "I invoke Allah's law[FN#212] between me and
her; for it  sufficed her not to take my ass, but she must needs egg on
the  Moorish barber to tear out my eye-teeth and fire me on both
temples."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and  ceased to say
her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
donkey-boy rose and cried out, "I invoke Allah's law between me  and
her; for it sufficed her not to take my ass, but she must needs  egg on
the barber to tear out my eye-teeth and fire me on both  temples;"
thereupon the Caliph bade give him an hundred  dinars and ordered the
dyer the like, saying, "Go; set up thy  dyery again." So they called
down blessings on his head and  went away. The Badawi also took his
clothes and horse and  departed, saying, "'Tis henceforth unlawful and
forbidden me to  enter Baghdad and eat honey-fritters." And the others
took their  goods and went away. Then said the Caliph, "Ask a boon of
me, O Dalilah!"; and she said, "Verily, my father was governor  of the
carrier-pigeons to thee and I know how to rear the birds;  and my
husband was town-captain of Baghdad. Now I wish to  have the reversion
of my husband and my daughter wisheth to  have that of her father." The
Caliph granted both their requests  and she said, "I ask of thee that I
may be portress of thy Khan." Now he had built a Khan of three stories,
for the merchants to  lodge in, and had assigned to its service forty
slaves and also forty  dogs he had brought from the King of the
Sulaymániyah,[FN#213] when  he deposed him; and there was in the Khan a
cook-slave, who  cooked for the chattels and fed the hounds for which
he let make  collars. Said the Caliph, "O Dalilah, I will write thee a
patent  of guardianship of the Khan, and if aught be lost therefrom,
thou shalt be answerable for it. "'Tis well," replied she; "but do 
thou lodge my daughter in the pavilion over the door of the Khan, for
it hath terraced roofs, and carrier-pigeons may not be reared to 
advantage save in an open space." The Caliph granted her this  also and
she and her daughter removed to the pavilion in question,  where Zaynab
hung up the one-and-forty dresses of Calamity  Ahmad and his company.
Moreover, they delivered to Dalilah  the forty pigeons which carried
the royal messages, and the Caliph  appointed the Wily One mistress
over the forty slaves and charged  them to obey her. She made the place
of her sitting behind the  door of the Khan, and every day she used to
go up to the Caliph's  Divan, lest he should need to send a message by
pigeon-post and  stay there till eventide whilst the forty slaves stood
on guard at the Khan; and when darkness came on they loosed the forty
dogs that they might keep watch over the place by night. Such were the
doings of Dalilah the Wily One in Baghdad and much like them were

The Adventures of Mercury Ali of Cairo.[FN#214]

Now as regards the works of Mercury 'Alí­; there lived once at
Cairo,[FN#215] in the days of Saláh the Egyptian, who was Chief of the 
Cairo Police and had forty men under him, a sharper named Ali,  for
whom the Master of Police used to set snares and think that  he had
fallen therein; but, when they sought for him, they found  that he had
fled like zaybak, or quicksilver, wherefore they dubbed  him Ali Zaybak
or Mercury Ali of Cairo. Now one day, as he  sat with his men in his
hall, his heart became heavy within him  and his breast was straitened.
The hall-keeper saw him sitting  with frowning face and said to him,
"What aileth thee, O my  Chief? If thy breast be straitened take a turn
in the streets of  Cairo, for assuredly walking in her markets will do
away with thy irk." So he rose up and went out and threaded the streets
 awhile, but only increased in cark and care. Presently, he came  to a
wine-shop and said to himself, "I will go in and drink myself drunken."
So he entered and seeing seven rows of people in the shop, said,
"Harkye, taverner! I will not sit except by myself." Accordingly, the
vintner placed him in a chamber alone  and set strong pure wine before
him whereof he drank till he lost  his senses. Then he sallied forth
again and walked till he came  to the road called Red, whilst the
people left the street clear  before him, out of fear of him.
Presently, he turned and saw a  water-carrier trudging along, with his
skin and gugglet, crying out  and saying, "O exchange! There is no
drink but what raisins  make, there is no love-delight but what of the
lover we take and  none sitteth in the place of honour save the
sensible freke[FN#216]!" So  he said to him, "Here, give me to drink!"
The water-carrier  looked at him and gave him the gugglet which he took
and  gazing into it, shook it up and lastly poured it out on the
ground.  Asked the water-carrier, "Why dost thou not drink?"; and he 
answered, saying, "Give me to drink." So the man filled the cup  a
second time and he took it and shook it and emptied it on the  ground;
and thus he did a third time. Quoth the water-carrier,  "An thou wilt
not drink, I will be off." And Ali said, "Give me  to drink." So he
filled the cup a fourth time and gave it to him;  and he drank and gave
the man a dinar. The water-carrier looked  at him with disdain and
said, belittling him, "Good luck to thee! Good luck to thee, my lad!
Little folk are one thing and great folk another!"—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say,

When it was the Seven Hundred and Ninth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the
water-carrier receiving the dinar, looked at the giver with disdain 
and said "Good luck to thee! Good luck to thee! Little folk  are one
thing and great folk another." Now when Mercury Ali  heard this, he
caught hold of the man's gaberdine and drawing on  him a poignard of
price, such an one as that whereof the poet speaketh in these two

"Watered steel-blade, the world perfection calls, * Drunk with
     the viper poison foes appals,
Cuts lively, burns the blood whene'er it falls; * And picks up
     gems from pave of marble halls;"[FN#217]

cried to him, "O Shaykh, speak reasonably to me! Thy water- skin is
worth if dear three dirhams, and the gugglets I emptied on  the ground
held a pint or so of water." Replied the water-carrier  "'Tis well,"
and Ali rejoined, "I gave thee a golden ducat: why,  then dost thou
belittle me? Say me, hast thou ever seen any  more valiant than I or
more generous than I?" Answered the water-carrier; "I have indeed, seen
one more valiant than thou  and eke more generous than thou; for,
never, since women bare  children, was there on earth's face a brave
man who was not  generous." Quoth Ali, "And who is he thou deemest
braver and  more generous than I?" Quoth the other, "Thou must know
that I have had a strange adventure. My father was a Shaykh  of the
Water-carriers who give drink in Cairo and, when he died,  he left me
five male camels, a he-mule, a shop and a house; but  the poor man is
never satisfied; or, if he be satisfied he dieth.  So I said to myself,
'I will go up to Al-Hijaz'; and, taking a  string of camels, bought
goods on tick, till I had run in debt for  five hundred ducats, all of
which I lost in the pilgrimage. Then  I said in my mind, 'If I return
to Cairo the folk will clap me in  jail for their goods.' So I fared
with the pilgrims- caravan of  Damascus to Aleppo and thence I went on
to Baghdad, where I  sought out the Shaykh of the Water-carriers of the
city and  finding his house I went in and repeated the opening chapter
of  the Koran to him. He questioned me of my case and I told him all
that had betided me, whereupon he assigned me a shop  and gave me a
water-skin and gear. So I sallied forth a-morn  trusting in Allah to
provide, and went round about the city. I  offered the gugglet to one,
that he might drink; but he cried, 'I  have eaten naught whereon to
drink; for a niggard invited me  this day and set two gugglets before
me; so I said to him, 'O  son of the sordid, hast thou given me aught
to eat that thou  offerest me drink after it?' Wherefore wend thy ways,
O water-carrier, till I have eaten somewhat: then come and give me to 
drink.' Thereupon I accosted another and he said, 'Allah  provide
thee!' And so I went on till noon, without taking hansel, and I said to
myself, 'Would Heaven I had never come to  Baghdad!' Presently, I saw
the folk running as fast as they could;  so I followed them and behold,
a long file of men riding two and two and clad in steel, with double
neck-rings and felt bonnets and  burnouses and swords and bucklers. I
asked one of the folk  whose suite this was, and he answered, 'That of
Captain Ahmad  al-Danaf.' Quoth I, 'And what is he?' and quoth the
other, 'He  is town-captain of Baghdad and her Divan, and to him is 
committed the care of the suburbs. He getteth a thousand dinars a 
month from the Caliph and Hasan Shuman hath the like. More-over, each
of his men draweth an hundred dinars a month; and  they are now
returning to their barrack from the Divan.' And lo!  Calamity Ahmad saw
me and cried out, 'Come give me drink.' So  I filled the cup and gave
it him, and he shook it and emptied it  out, like unto thee; and thus
he did a second time. Then I filled  the cup a third time and he took a
draught as thou diddest; after  which he asked me, 'O water- carrier,
whence comest thou?' And  I answered, 'From Cairo,' and he, 'Allah keep
Cairo and her  citizens! What may bring thee thither?' So I told him my
story  and gave him to understand that I was a debtor fleeing from debt
 and distress. He cried, 'Thou art welcome to Baghdad'; then he gave me
five dinars and said to his men, 'For the love of Allah be  generous to
him.' So each of them gave me a dinar and Ahmad  said to me, 'O Shaykh,
what while thou abidest in Baghdad thou  shalt have of us the like
every time thou givest us to drink.'  Accordingly, I paid them frequent
visits and good ceased not to  come to me from the folk till, one day,
reckoning up the profit I  had made of them, I found it a thousand
dinars and said to  myself, 'The best thing thou canst do is to return
to Egypt.' So I went to Ahmad's house and kissed his hand, and he said,
'What  seekest thou?' Quoth I, 'I have a mind to depart'; and I
repeated  these two couplets,

'Sojourn of stranger, in whatever land, * Is like the castle based
     upon the wind:
The breaths of breezes level all he raised. * And so on
     homeward-way's the stranger's mind.'

I added, 'The caravan is about to start for Cairo and I wish to  return
to my people.' So he gave me a she-mule and an hundred  dinars and said
to me, 'I desire to send somewhat by thee, O  Shaykh! Dost thou know
the people of Cairo?' 'Yes,' answered  I";—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased to  say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Tenth Night,

She pursued, It bath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Ahmad
al-Danaf had given the water-carrier a she-mule and an hundred dinars
and said to him, "I desire to send a trust by thee.  Dost thou know the
people of Cairo?" "I answered (quoth the  water-carrier), 'Yes'; and he
said, 'Take this letter and carry it to  Ali Zaybak of Cairo and say to
him, 'Thy Captain saluteth thee and he is now with the Caliph.' So I
took the letter and journeyed  back to Cairo, where I paid my debts and
plied my water-carrying  trade; but I have not delivered the letter,
because I know  not the abode of Mercury Ali." Quoth Ali, "O elder, be
of  good cheer and keep thine eyes cool and clear: I am that Ali, the
first of the lads of Captain Ahmad: here with the letter!"  So he gave
him the missive and he opened it and read these two  couplets,

"O adornment of beauties to thee write I * On a paper that
     flies as the winds go by:
Could I fly, I had flown to their arms in desire, * But a bird
     with cut wings; how shall ever he fly?"

"But after salutation from Captain Ahmad al-Danaf to the eldest of his
sons, Mercury Ali of Cairo. Thou knowest that I tormented Salah al-Din
the Cairene and befooled him till I buried  him alive and reduced his
lads to obey me, and amongst them  Ali Kitf al-Jamal; and I am now
become town-captain of Baghdad in the Divan of the Caliph who hath made
me over-seer of the suburbs. An thou be still mindful of our covenant,
come to me; haply thou shalt play some trick in Baghdad which may
promote thee to the Caliph's service, so he may appoint thee stipends
and allowances and assign thee a lodging, which is what  thou wouldst
see and so peace be on thee." When Ali read this  letter, he kissed it
and laying it on his head, gave the water-carrier ten dinars; after
which he returned to his barracks and  told his comrades and said to
them, "I commend you one to  other." Then he changed all his clothes
and, donning a travelling cloak and a tarboosh, took a case, containing
a spear of bamboo-cane, four-and-twenty cubits long, made in several
pieces, to fit  into one another. Quoth his lieutenant, "Wilt thou go a
journey  when the treasury is empty?"; and quoth Ali, "When I reach 
Damascus I will send you what shall suffice you." Then he set  out and
fared on, till he overtook a caravan about to start, whereof were the
Shah-bandar, or Provost of the Merchants, and  forty other traders.
They had all loaded their beasts, except  the Provost, whose loads lay
upon the ground, and Ali heard his caravan-leader, who was a Syrian,
say to the muleteers, "Bear a  hand, one of you!" But they reviled him
and abused him. Quoth Ali in himself, "None will suit me so well to
travel withal as this leader." Now Ali was beardless and well-
favoured;  so he went up to and saluted the leader who welcomed him and
 said, "What seekest thou?" Replied Ali, "O my uncle, I see  thee alone
with forty mule-loads of goods; but why hast thou not  brought hands to
help thee?" Rejoined the other, "O my son, I hired two lads and clothed
them and put in each one's pocket  two hundred dinars; and they helped
me till we came to the  Dervishes' Convent,[FN#218] when they ran
away." Quoth Ali, "Whither  are you bound?" and quoth the Syrian, "to
Aleppo," when  Ali said, "I will lend thee a hand." Accordingly they
loaded the beasts and the Provost mounted his she-mule and they set out
 he rejoicing in Ali; and presently he loved him and made  much of him
and on this wise they fared on till nightfall, when  they dismounted
and ate and drank. Then came the time of  sleep and Ali lay down on his
side and made as if he slept;  whereupon the Syrian stretched himself
near him and Ali rose  from his stead and sat down at the door of the
merchant's  pavilion. Presently the Syrian turned over and would have 
taken Ali in his arms, but found him not and said to himself, "Haply he
hath promised another and he hath taken him;  but I have the first
right and another night I will keep him."  Now Ali continued sitting at
the door of the tent till nigh upon  daybreak, when he returned and lay
down near the Syrian, who  found him by his side, when he awoke, and
said to himself, "If I ask him where he hath been, he will leave me and
go away."  So he dissembled with him and they went on till they came to
 a forest, in which was a cave, where dwelt a rending lion. Now
whenever a caravan passed, they would draw lots among themselves and
him on whom the lot fell they would throw to the beast. So they drew
lots and the lot fell not save upon the  Provost of the Merchants. And
lo! the lion cut off their way  awaiting his prey, wherefore the
Provost was sore distressed  and said to the leader, "Allah disappoint
the fortunes[FN#219] of the far  one and bring his journey to naught! I
charge thee, after my  death, give my loads to my children." Quoth Ali
the Clever One, "What meaneth all this?" So they told him the case and 
he said, "Why do ye run from the tom-cat of the desert? I  warrant you
I will kill him." So the Syrian went to the Provost  and told him of
this and he said, "If he slay him, I will give him  a thousand dinars,"
and said the other merchants, "We will reward him likewise one and
all." With this Ali put off  his mantle and there appeared upon him a
suit of steel; then he  took a chopper of steel[FN#220] and opening it
turned the screw; after  which he went forth alone and standing in the
road before the  lion, cried out to him. The lion ran at him, but Ali
of Cairo  smote him between the eyes with his chopper and cut him in 
sunder, whilst the caravan-leader and the merchants looked on.  Then
said he to the leader, "Have no fear, O nuncle!" and the Syrian
answered, saying, "O my son, I am thy servant for all future time."
Then the Provost embraced him and kissed him between the eyes and gave
him the thousand dinars, and each of the other merchants gave him
twenty dinars. He deposited all the coin with the Provost and they
slept that night till the morning,  when they set out again, intending
for Baghdad, and fared on  till they came to the Lion's Clump and the
Wady of Dogs, where  lay a villain Badawi, a brigand and his tribe, who
sallied forth on  them. The folk fled from the highwaymen, and the
Provost said,  "My monies are lost!"; when, lo! up came Ali in a buff
coat  hung with bells, and bringing out his long lance, fitted the
pieces  together. Then he seized one of the Arab's horses and mounting 
it cried out to the Badawi Chief, saying, "Come out to fight me  with
spears!" Moreover he shook his bells and the Arab's mare took fright at
the noise and Ali struck the Chief's spear and broke  it. Then he smote
him on the neck and cut off his head.[FN#221] When the Badawin saw
their chief fall, they ran at Ali, but he cried out, saying,  "Allaho
Akbar—God is Most Great!"—and, falling on them  broke them and put them
to flight. Then he raised the Chief's head  on his spear-point and
returned to the merchants, who rewarded  him liberally and continued
their journey, till they reached Baghdad. Thereupon Ali took his money
from the Provost and  committed it to the Syrian caravan-leader,
saying, "When thou  returnest to Cairo, ask for my barracks and give
these monies to  my deputy." Then he slept that night and on the morrow
he  entered the city and threading the streets enquired for Calamity
Ahmad's quarters; but none would direct him thereto.[FN#222] So he 
walked on, till he came to the square Al-Nafz, where he saw  children
at play, and amongst them a lad called Ahmad al-Lakí­t,[FN#223] and
said to himself, "O my Ali, thou shalt not get news of them  but from
their little ones." Then he turned and seeing a sweet-meat-seller
bought Halwá of him and called to the children; but Ahmad al-Lakit
drove the rest away and coming up to him, said,  "What seekest thou?"
Quoth Ali, "I had a son and he died and  I saw him in a dream asking
for sweetmeats: wherefore I have  bought them and wish to give each
child a bit." So saying, he  gave Ahmad a slice, and he looked at it
and seeing a dinar sticking to it, said "Begone! I am no catamite: seek
another  than I." Quoth Ali, "O my son, none but a sharp fellow taketh 
the hire, even as he is a sharp one who giveth it. I have sought  all
day for Ahmad al-Danaf's barrack, but none would direct me  thereto; so
this dinar is thine an thou wilt guide me thither."  Quoth the lad, "I
will run before thee and do thou keep up with  me, till I come to the
place, when I will catch up a pebble with  my foot[FN#224] and kick it
against the door; and so shalt thou know it." Accordingly he ran on and
Ali after him, till they came to the place, when the boy caught up a
pebble between his toes and kicked it against the door so as to make
the place known.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eleventh Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Ahmad the
Abortion had made known the place, Ali laid hold of him and would have
taken the dinar from him, but could not; so he said to him, "Go: thou
deservest largesse for thou art a sharp  fellow, whole of wit and stout
of heart. Inshallah, if I become a  captain to the Caliph, I will make
thee one of my lads." Then  the boy made off and Ali Zaybak went up to
the door and knocked; whereupon quoth Ahmad al-Danaf, "O doorkeeper,
open the  door; that is the knock of Quicksilver Ali the Cairene." So
he  opened the door and Ali entered and saluted with the salam  Ahmad
who embraced him, and the Forty greeted him. Then  Calamity Ahmad gave
him a suit of clothes, saying, "When the  Caliph made me captain, he
clothed my lads and I kept this suit[FN#225]  for thee." Then they
seated him in the place of honour and  setting on meat they ate well
and drink they drank hard and  made merry till the morning, when Ahmad
said to Ali, "Beware  thou walk not about the streets of Baghdad, but
sit thee still in this barrack." Asked Ali, "Why so? Have I come hither
to be  shut up? No, I came to look about me and divert myself." 
Replied Ahmad, "O my son, think not that Baghdad be like  Cairo.
Baghdad is the seat of the Caliphate; sharpers abound  therein and
rogueries spring therefrom as worts spring out of  earth." So Ali abode
in the barrack three days when Ahmad  said to him, "I wish to present
thee to the Caliph, that he  may assign thee an allowance." But he
replied, "When the  time cometh." So he let him go his own way. One
day, as Ali sat in the barrack, his breast became straitened and his
soul  troubled and he said in himself, "Come, let us up and thread the 
ways of Baghdad and broaden my bosom." So he went out and  walked from
street to street, till he came to the middle bazar,  where he entered a
cook-shop and dined;[FN#226] after which he went out  to wash his
hands. Presently he saw forty slaves, with felt  bonnets and steel
cutlasses, come walking, two by two; and last of all came Dalilah the
Wily, mounted on a she-mule, with a gilded helmet which bore a ball of
polished steel, and clad in a coat of  mail, and such like. Now she was
returning from the Divan to  the Khan of which she was portress; and
when she espied Ali,  she looked at him fixedly and saw that he
resembled Calamity Ahmad in height and breadth. Moreover, he was clad
in a striped  Abá-cloak and a burnous, with a steel cutlass by his side
and  similar gear, while valour shone from his eyes, testifying in
favour  of him and not in disfavour of him. So she returned to the Khan
 and going in to her daughter, fetched a table of sand, and struck  a
geomantic figure, whereby she discovered that the stranger's  name was
Ali of Cairo and that his fortune overcame her fortune and that of her
daughter. Asked Zaynab, "O my mother, what  hath befallen thee that
thou hast recourse to the sand-table?"  Answered Dalilah, "O my
daughter, I have seen this day a young  man who resembleth Calamity
Ahmad, and I fear lest he come to  hear how thou didst strip Ahmad and
his men and enter the Khan and play us a trick, in revenge for what we
did with his chief and the forty; for methinks he has taken up his
lodging in Al- Danaf's  barrack." Zaynab rejoined, "What is this?
Methinks thou hast  taken his measure." Then she donned her fine
clothes and went  out into the streets. When the people saw her, they
all made love  to her and she promised and sware and listened and
coquetted and  passed from market to market, till she saw Ali the
Cairene coming,  when she went up to him and rubbed her shoulder
against him.  Then she turned and said "Allah give long life to folk of
 discrimination!" Quoth he, "How goodly is thy form! To whom  dost thou
belong?"; and quoth she, "To the gallant[FN#227] like thee;"  and he
said, "Art thou wife or spinster?" "Married," said she.  Asked Ali,
"Shall it be in my lodging or thine?[FN#228] and she answered, "I am a
merchant's daughter and a merchant's wife and in all my life I have
never been out of doors till to-day, and  my only reason was that when
I made ready food and thought to  eat, I had no mind thereto without
company. When I saw thee,  love of thee entered my heart: so wilt thou
deign solace my soul  and eat a mouthful with me?" Quoth he, "Whoso is
invited, let him accept." Thereupon she went on and he followed her
from  street to street, but presently he bethought himself and said, 
"What wilt thou do and thou a stranger? Verily 'tis said,  'Whoso doth
whoredom in his strangerhood, Allah will send him  back disappointed.'
But I will put her off from thee with fair words." So he said to her,
"Take this dinar and appoint me a  day other than this;" and she said,
"By the Mighty Name, it  may not be but thou shalt go home with me as
my guest this very  day and I will take thee to fast friend." So he
followed her till  she came to a house with a lofty porch and a wooden
bolt on the  door and said to him, "Open this lock."[FN#229] Asked he
"Where is the key?"; and she answered, "'Tis lost." Quoth he, "Whoso
openeth a lock without a key is a knave whom it behoveth the ruler  to
punish, and I know not how to open doors without keys?"[FN#230]  With
this she raised her veil and showed him her face, whereat he  took one
glance of eyes that cost him a thousand sighs. Then she  let fall her
veil on the lock and repeating over it the names of the mother of
Moses, opened it without a key and entered. He  followed her and saw
swords and steel-weapons hanging up; and she  put off her veil and sat
down with him. Quoth he to himself,  "Accomplish what Allah bath
decreed to thee," and bent over her,  to take a kiss of her cheek; but
she caught the kiss upon her palm,  saying, "This beseemeth not but by
night." Then she brought a  tray of food and wine, and they ate and
drank; after which she  rose and drawing water from the well, poured it
from the ewer over his hands, whilst he washed them. Now whilst they
were on this wise, she cried out and beat upon her breast, saying, "My
husband  had a signet-ring of ruby, which was pledged to him for five 
hundred dinars, and I put it on; but 'twas too large for me, so I
straitened it with wax, and when I let down the bucket,[FN#231] that 
ring must have dropped into the well. So turn thy face to the  door,
the while I doff my dress and go down into the well and  fetch it."
Quoth Ali, "'Twere shame on me that thou shouldst  go down there I
being present; none shall do it save I." So he  put off his clothes and
tied the rope about himself and she let him  down into the well. Now
there was much water therein and she  said to him, "The rope is too
short; loose thyself and drop down."  So he did himself loose from the
rope and dropped into the  water, in which he sank fathoms deep without
touching bottom;  whilst she donned her mantilla and taking his
clothes, returned to  her mother— And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When is was the Seven Hundred and Twelfth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Ali of Cairo
was in the well, Zaynab donned her mantilla and, taking  his clothes,
returned to her mother and said, "I have stripped Ali  the Egyptian and
cast him into the Emir Hasan's well, whence  alas for his chance of
escaping!"[FN#232] Presently, the Emir Hasan,  the master of the house,
who had been absent at the Divan, came home and, finding the door open,
said to his Syce, "Why didst  thou not draw the bolt?" "O my lord,"
replied the groom,  "indeed I locked it with my own hand." The Emir
cried, "As  my head liveth, some robber hath entered my house!" Then he
 went in and searched, but found none and said to the groom,  "Fill the
ewer, that I may make the Wuzu-ablution." So the  man lowered the
bucket into the well but, when he drew it up, he  found it heavy and
looking down, saw something therein sitting;  whereupon he let it fall
into the water and cried out, saying, "O  my lord, an Ifrit came up to
me out of the well!" Replied the Emir, "Go and fetch four doctors of
the law, that they may read  the Koran over him, till he go away." So
he fetched the doctors and the Emir said to them, "Sit round this well
and exorcise me  this Ifrit." They did as he bade them; after which the
groom and  another servant lowered the bucket again and Ali clung to it
and  hid himself under it patiently till he came near the top, when he 
sprang out and landed among the doctors, who fell a-cuffing one 
another and crying out, "Ifrit! Ifrit!" The Emir looked at Ali  and
seeing him a young man, said to him, "Art thou a thief?"  "No," replied
Ali; "Then what dost thou in the well?" asked  the Emir; and Ali
answered, "I was asleep and dreamt a wet dream;[FN#233] so I went down
to the Tigris to wash myself and dived, whereupon the current carried
me under the earth and I came up  in this well." Quoth the other, "Tell
the truth."[FN#234] So Ali told him all that had befallen him, and the
Emir gave him an old gown and let him go. He returned to Calamity
Ahmad's lodging and related to him all that had passed. Quoth Ahmad,
"Did I not warn thee that Baghdad is full of women who play tricks upon
 men?" And quoth Ali Kitf al-Jamal, "I conjure thee by the  Mighty
Name, tell me how it is that thou art the chief of the lads  of Cairo
and yet hast been stripped by a girl?" This was  grievous to Ali and he
repented him of not having followed  Ahmad's advice. Then the Calamity
gave him another suit of  clothes and Hasan Shuman said to him, "Dost
thou know the  young person?" "No," replied Ali; and Hasan rejoined,
"'Twas Zaynab, the daughter of Dalilah the Wily, the portress of  the
Caliph's Khan; and hast thou fallen into her toils, O Ali?" Quoth he,
"Yes," and quoth Hasan, "O Ali, 'twas she who took  thy Chief's clothes
and those of all his men." "This is a disgrace  to you all!" "And what
thinkest thou to do?" "I purpose to  marry her." "Put away that thought
far from thee, and console thy  heart of her." "O Hasan, do thou
counsel me how I shall do to  marry her." "With all my heart: if thou
wilt drink from my  hand and march under my banner, I will bring thee
to thy will of  her." "I will well." So Hasan made Ali put off his
clothes;  and, taking a cauldron heated therein somewhat as it were
pitch,  wherewith he anointed him and he became like unto a blackamoor 
slave. Moreover, he smeared his lips and cheeks and pencilled  his eyes
with red Kohl.[FN#235] Then he clad him in a slave's habit and  giving
him a tray of kabobs and wine, said to him, "There is a  black cook in
the Khan who requires from the bazar only meat;  and thou art now
become his like; so go thou to him civilly and accost him in friendly
fashion and speak to him in the blacks' lingo, and salute him, saying,
''Tis long since we met in the beer-ken.' He will answer thee, 'I have
been too busy: on my hands be forty slaves, for whom I cook dinner and
supper, besides  making ready a tray for Dalilah and the like for her
daughter  Zaynab and the dogs' food.' And do thou say to him, 'Come,
let  us eat kabobs and lush swipes.'[FN#236] Then go with him into the 
saloon and make him drunken and question him of his service,  how many
dishes and what dishes he hath to cook, and ask him of  the dogs' food
and the keys of the kitchen and the larder; and he  will tell thee; for
a man, when he is drunken, telleth all he would  conceal were he sober.
When thou hast done this drug him and  don his clothes and sticking the
two knives in thy girdle, take the vegetable-basket and go to the
market and buy meat and greens, with which do thou return to the Khan
and enter the kitchen and  the larder and cook the food. Dish it up and
put Bhang in it, so  as to drug the dogs and the slaves and Dalilah and
Zaynab and  lastly serve up. When all are asleep, hie thee to the upper
 chamber and bring away every suit of clothes thou wilt find hanging
there. And if thou have a mind to marry Zaynab, bring  with thee also
the forty carrier-pigeons." So Ali went to the  Khan and going in to
the cook, saluted him and said, "'Tis long  since I have met thee in
the beer-ken." The slave replied, "I  have been busy cooking for the
slaves and the dogs." Then he took him and making him drunken,
questioned him of his work.  Quoth the kitchener, "Every day I cook
five dishes for dinner  and the like for supper; and yesterday they
sought of me a sixth  dish,[FN#237] yellow rice,[FN#238] and a seventh,
a mess of cooked pomegranate seed." Ali asked, "And what is the order
of thy service?" and the slave answered, "First I serve up Zaynab's
tray, next Dalilah's;  then I feed the slaves and give the dogs their
sufficiency of meat,  and the least that satisfies them is a pound
each." But, as fate  would have it, he forgot to ask him of the keys.
Then he drugged  him and donned his clothes; after which he took the
basket and  went to the market. There he bought meat and greens.—And 
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her  permitted

When it was the Seven Hundred and Thirteenth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Ali of 
Cairo, after drugging the cook-slave with Bhang, took the two  knives
which he stuck in his belt and, carrying the vegetable-basket, went to
the market where he bought meat and greens;  and, presently returning
to the Khan, he saw Dalilah seated at the  gate, watching those who
went in and came out, and the forty  slaves with her, armed. So he
heartened his heart and entered;  but Dalilah knew him and said to him,
"Back, O captain of  thieves! Wilt thou play a trick on me in the
Khan?" Thereupon  he (dressed as a slave) turned and said to her, "What
sayest thou,  O portress?" She asked, "What hast thou done with the
slave,  our cook?; say me if thou hast killed or drugged him?" He 
answered, "What cook? Is there here another slave-cook than  I?" She
rejoined, "Thou liest, thou art Mercury Ali the Cairene."  And he said
to her, in slaves' patois, "O portress, are the Cairenes  black or
white? I will slave for you no longer." Then said the  slaves to him,
"What is the matter with thee, O our cousin?"  Cried Dalilah, "This is
none of your uncle's children, but Ali  Zaybak the Egyptian; and
meseems he hath either drugged your  cousin or killed him." But they
said, "Indeed this is our cousin Sa'adu'llah the cook;" and she, "Not
so, 'tis Mercury Ali, and he hath dyed his skin." Quoth the sharper,
"And who is Ali? I am Sa'adu'llah." Then she fetched unguent of proof,
with which she anointed Ali's forearm and rubbed it; but the black did
not  come off; whereupon quoth the slaves "Let him go and dress us  our
dinner." Quoth Dalilah, "If he be indeed your cousin, he  knoweth what
you sought of him yesternight[FN#239] and how many  dishes he cooketh
every day." So they asked him of this and he  said, "Every day I cook
you five dishes for the morning and the  like for the evening meal,
lentils and rice and broth and stew[FN#240] and  sherbet of roses; and
yesternight ye sought of me a sixth dish and  a seventh, to wit yellow
rice and cooked pomegranate seed." And  the slaves said "Right!" Then
quoth Dalilah, "In with him and  if he know the kitchen and the larder,
he is indeed your cousin; but, if not, kill him." Now the cook had a
cat which he had  brought up, and whenever he entered the kitchen it
would stand  at the door and spring to his back, as soon as he went in.
So,  when Ali entered, the cat saw him and jumped on his shoulders; 
but he threw it off and it ran before him to the door of the kitchen 
and stopped there. He guessed that this was the kitchen door; so  he
took the keys and seeing one with traces of feathers thereon,  knew it
for the kitchen key and therewith opened the door. Then  he entered and
setting down the greens, went out again, led by the  cat, which ran
before him and stopped at another door. He guessed  that this was the
larder and seeing one of the keys marked with  grease, knew it for the
key and opened the door therewith; where-upon quoth the slaves, "O
Dalilah, were he a stranger, he had not  known the kitchen and the
larder, nor had he been able to distinguish  the keys thereof from the
rest; verily, he is our cousin  Sa'adu'llah." Quoth she, "He learned
the places from the cat and  distinguished the keys one from the other
by the appearance: but  this cleverness imposeth not upon me." Then he
returned to the  kitchen where he cooked the dinner and, carrying
Zaynab's tray up  to her room, saw all the stolen clothes hanging up;
after which he  went down and took Dalilah her tray and gave the slaves
and the  dogs their rations. The like he did at sundown and drugged 
Dalilah's food and that of Zaynab and the slaves. Now the doors  of the
Khan were opened and shut with the sun. So Ali went  forth and cried
out, saying, "O dwellers in the Khan, the watch  is set and we have
loosed the dogs; whoso stirreth out after this  can blame none save
himself." But he had delayed the dogs'  supper and put poison therein;
consequently when he set it before  them, they ate of it and died while
the slaves and Dalilah and  Zaynab still slept under Bhang. Then he
went up and took all the clothes and the carrier-pigeons and, opening
the gate made off to the barrack of the Forty, where he found Hasan
Shuman the Pestilence who said to him, "How hast thou fared?" Thereupon
he told him what had passed and he praised him. Then he caused him to
put off his clothes and boiled a decoction of herbs  wherewith he
washed him, and his skin became white as it was;  after which he donned
his own dress and going back to the Khan,  clad the cook in the habit
he had taken from him and made him smell  to the counter-drug; upon
which the slave awoke and going forth  to the greengrocer's, bought
vegetables and returned to the Khan.  Such was the case with Al-Zaybak
of Cairo; but as regards Dalilah  the Wily, when the day broke, one of
the lodgers in the Khan came  out of his chamber and, seeing the gate
open and the slaves drugged  and the dogs dead, he went in to her and
found her lying drugged,  with a scroll on her neck and at her head a
sponge steeped in the counter-drug. He set the sponge to her nostrils
and she awoke and  asked, "Where am I?" The merchant answered, "When I
came down from my chamber I saw the gate of the Khan open and the dogs
dead and found the slaves and thee drugged." So she took up  the paper
and read therein these words, "None did this deed save  Ali the
Egyptian." Then she awoke the slaves and Zaynab by  making them smell
the counter-Bhang and said to them, "Did I not  tell you that this was
Ali of Cairo?"; presently adding to the slaves,  "But do ye conceal the
matter." Then she said to her daughter,  "How often have I warned thee
that Ali would not forego his revenge? He hath done this deed in
requital of that which  thou diddest with him and he had it in his
power to do with thee  other than this thing; but he refrained
therefrom out of courtesy  and a desire that there should be love and
friendship between us." So saying, she doffed her man's gear and donned
woman's attire[FN#241]  and, tying the kerchief of peace about her
neck, repaired to Ahmad  al-Danaf's barrack. Now when Ali entered with
the clothes and  the carrier-pigeons, Hasan Shuman gave the hall-keeper
the price  of forty pigeons and he bought them and cooked them amongst 
the men. Presently there came a knock at the door and Ahmad  said,
"That is Dalilah's knock: rise and open to her, O hall-keeper." So he
admitted her and—And Shahrazad perceived  the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Fourteenth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Dalilah
was admitted, Hasan asked her, "What bringeth thee hither, O ill-omened
old woman? Verily, thou and thy brother Zurayk the fishmonger are of a
piece!"; and she answered, "O captain I am in the wrong and this my
neck is at thy mercy; but tell me which of you it was that played me
this trick?" Quoth  Calamity Ahmad, "'Twas the first of my lads."
Rejoined Dalilah,  "For the sake of Allah intercede with him to give me
back the  carrier-pigeons and what not, and thou wilt lay me under
great  obligation." When Hasan heard this he said, "Allah requite thee,
 O Ali! Why didst thou cook the pigeons?"; and Ali answered,  "I knew
not that they were carrier-pigeons." Then said Ahmad,  "O hall-keeper
bring us the cooked pigeons." So he brought them  and Dalilah took a
piece and tasting it, said, "This is none of the  carrier- pigeons'
flesh, for I fed them on grains of musk and their meat is become even
as musk." Quoth Shuman, "An thou desire to have the carrier-pigeons,
comply with Ali's will." Asked she "What is that?" And Hasan answered,
"He would have thee marry him to thy daughter Zaynab." She said, "I
have not command over her except of affection"; and Hasan said to Ali
the  Cairene "Give her the pigeons." So he gave them to her, and she 
took them and rejoiced in them. Then quoth Hasan to her,  "There is no
help but thou return us a sufficient reply"; and  Dalilah rejoined, "If
it be indeed his wish to marry her, it availed  nothing to play this
clever trick upon us: it behoveth him rather  to demand her in marriage
of her mother's brother and her  guardian, Captain Zurayk, him who
crieth out, saying, 'Ho! a  pound of fish for two farthings!' and who
hangeth up in his shop  a purse containing two thousand dinars." When
the Forty heard  this, they all rose and cried out, saying, "What
manner of blather  is this, O harlot? Dost thou wish to bereave us of
our brother  Ali of Cairo?" Then she returned to the Khan and said to
her daughter, "Ali the Egyptian seeketh thee in marriage." Whereat
Zaynab rejoiced, for she loved him because of his chaste forbearance
towards her,[FN#242] and asked her mother what had passed. So  she told
her, adding, "I made it a condition that he should demand  thy hand of
thine uncle, so I might make him fall into destruction."  Meanwhile Ali
turned to his fellows and asked them,  "What manner of man is this
Zurayk?"; and they answered, "He  was chief of the sharpers of Al-Irak
land and could all but pierce  mountains and lay hold upon the stars.
He would steal the Kohl  from the eye and, in brief, he had not his
match for roguery; but  he hath repented his sins and foresworn his old
way of life and  opened him a fishmonger's shop. And now he hath
amassed two  thousand dinars by the sale of fish and laid them in a
purse with strings of silk, to which he hath tied bells and rings and
rattles of  brass, hung on a peg within the doorway. Every time he
openeth  his shop he suspendeth the said purse and crieth out, saying, 
'Where are ye, O sharpers of Egypt, O prigs of Al-Irak, O  tricksters
of Ajam-land? Behold, Zurayk the fishmonger hath  hung up a purse in
front of his shop, and whoso pretendeth to  craft and cunning, and can
take it by sleight, it is his.' So the long  fingered and greedy-minded
come and try to take the purse, but cannot; for, whilst he frieth his
fish and tendeth the fire, he layeth  at his feet scone-like circles of
lead; and whenever a thief thinketh  to take him unawares and maketh a
snatch at the purse he casteth at him a load of lead and slayeth him or
doeth him a damage. So  O Ali, wert thou to tackle him, thou wouldst be
as one who jostleth a funeral cortège, unknowing who is dead;[FN#243]
for thou art no  match for him, and we fear his mischief for thee.
Indeed, thou  hast no call to marry Zaynab, and he who leaveth a thing
alone  liveth without it." Cried Ali, "This were shame, O comrades; 
needs must I take the purse: but bring me a young lady's habit."  So
they brought him women's clothes and he clad himself therein  and
stained his hands with Henna, and modestly hung down his  veil. Then he
took a lamb and killing it, cut out the long  intestine[FN#244] which
he cleaned and tied up below; moreover he filled  it with the blood and
bound it between his thighs; after which he donned petticoat-trousers
and walking boots. He also made  himself a pair of false breasts with
birds' crops and filled them  with thickened milk and tied round his
hips and over his belly a piece of linen, which he stuffed with cotton,
girding himself over  all with a kerchief of silk well starched. Then
he went out,  whilst all who saw him exclaimed, "What a fine pair of
hind cheeks!" Presently he saw an ass-driver coming, so he gave  him a
dinar and mounting, rode till he came to Zurayk's shop,  where he saw
the purse hung up and the gold glittering through it. Now Zurayk was
frying fish, and Ali said, "O  ass- man, what is that smell?" Replied
he, "It's the smell  of Zurayk's fish." Quoth Ali, "I am a woman with
child and  the smell harmeth me; go, fetch me a slice of the fish." So
the donkey-boy said to Zurayk, "What aileth thee to fry fish so early 
and annoy pregnant women with the smell? I have here the wife  of the
Emir Hasan Sharr al-Tarik, and she is with child; so give  her a bit of
fish, for the babe stirreth in her womb. O Protector,  O my God, avert
from us the mischief of this day!" Thereupon  Zurayk took a piece of
fish and would have fried it, but the fire  had gone out and he went in
to rekindle it. Meanwhile Ali  dismounted and sitting down, pressed
upon the lamb's intestine till  it burst and the blood ran out from
between his legs. Then he  cried aloud, saying, "O my back! O my side!"
Whereupon the  driver turned and seeing the blood running, said, "What
aileth  thee, O my lady?" Replied Ali, "I have miscarried"; where-upon
Zurayk looked out and seeing the blood fled affrighted into the inner
shop. Quoth the donkey-driver, "Allah torment  thee, O Zurayk! The lady
hath miscarried and thou art no  match for her husband. Why must thou
make a stench so early  in the morning? I said to thee, 'Bring her a
slice,' but thou wouldst not." Thereupon, he took his ass and went his
way and, as Zurayk still did not appear, Ali put out his hand to the
purse;  but no sooner had he touched it than the bells and rattles and 
rings began to jingle and the gold to chink. Quoth Zurayk, who 
returned at the sound, "Thy perfidy hath come to light, O gallows-bird!
Wilt thou put a cheat on me and thou in a woman's habit?  Now take what
cometh to thee!" And he threw a cake of lead  at him, but it went agley
and lighted on another; whereupon the  people rose against Zurayk and
said to him, "Art thou a trades-man or a swashbuckler? An thou be a
tradesman, take down thy  purse and spare the folk thy mischief." He
replied, "Bismillah,  in the name of Allah! On my head be it." As for
Ali, he made  off to the barrack and told Hasan Shuman what had
happened,  after which he put off his woman's gear and donning a
groom's  habit which was brought to him by his chief took a dish and
five  dirhams. Then he returned to Zurayk's shop and the fishmonger 
said to him, "What dost thou want, O my master?"[FN#245] He showed him
the dirhams and Zurayk would have given him of the fish in the tray,
but he said, "I will have none save hot fish." So he  set fish in the
earthen pan and finding the fire dead, went in to  relight it;
whereupon Ali put out his hand to the purse and  caught hold of the end
of it. The rattles and rings and bells jingled and Zurayk said, "Thy
trick hath not deceived me. I  knew thee for all thou art disguised as
a groom by the grip of  thy hand on the dish and the dirhams."— And
Shahrazad  perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

When it was the Seven Hundred and Fifteenth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Ali of
Egypt put out his hand to the purse, the bells and rings  jingled and
Zurayk said, "Thy trick hath not deceived me for  all thou comest
disguised as a groom I knew thee by the grip of  thy hand on the dish
and the dirhams!" So saying, he threw the  lead at him, but he avoided
it and it fell into the pan full of  hot fish and broke it and
overturned it, fat and all, upon the  breast and shoulders of the Kazi,
who was passing. The oil ran  down inside his clothes to his privy
parts and he cried out, "O  my privities! What a sad pickle you are in!
Alas, unhappy I!  Who hath played me this trick?" Answered the people,
"O  our lord, it was some small boy that threw a stone into the  pan:
but for Allah's word, it had been worse." Then they  turned and seeing
the loaf of lead and that it was Zurayk who  had thrown it, rose
against him and said to him, "O Zurayk, this is not allowed of Allah!
Take down the purse or it shall  go ill for thee." Answered he, "I will
take it down, Inshallah!"  Meanwhile Ali returned to the barrack and
told his comrades  who cried, "Where is the purse?", all that had
passed and they  said, "Thou hast exhausted two- thirds of his
cunning." Then  he changed his groom's dress for the garb of a merchant
and going out, met a snake-charmer, with a bag of serpents and a 
wallet containing his kit to whom said he, "O charmer, come  and amuse
my lads, and thou shalt have largesse." So he  accompanied him to the
barrack, where he fed him and drugging him  with Bhang, doffed his
clothes and put them on. Then he took  the bags and repairing to
Zurayk's shop began to play the reed-pipe. Quoth Zurayk, "Allah provide
thee!" But Ali pulled  out the serpents and cast them down before him;
whereat the  fishseller, who was afraid of snakes, fled from them into
the  inner shop. Thereupon Ali picked up the reptiles and, thrusting 
them back into the bag, stretched out his hand and caught hold  of the
end of the purse. The rings again rang and the bells and rattles
jangled, and Zurayk cried, "Wilt thou never cease to play  me tricks?
Now thou feignest thyself a serpent-charmer!" So  saying, he took up a
piece of lead, and hurled it at Ali; but it  missed him and fell on the
head of a groom, who was passing  by, following his master, a trooper,
and knocked him down.  Quoth the soldier, "Who felled him?"; and the
folk said,  "'Twas a stone fell from the roof." So the soldier passed
on  and the people, seeing the piece of lead, went up to Zurayk and
cried to him, "Take down the purse!"; and he said,  "Inshallah, I will
take it down this very night!" Ali ceased  not to practice upon Zurayk
till he had made seven different  attempts but without taking the
purse. Then he returned the  snake-charmer his clothes and kit and gave
him due benevolence;  after which he went back to Zurayk's shop and
heard  him say, "If I leave the purse here to-night, he will dig
through  the shop-wall and take it; I will carry it home with me." So 
he arose and shut the shop; then he took down the purse and putting it
in his bosom set out home, till he came near his  house, when he saw a
wedding in a neighbour's lodging and  said to himself, "I will hie me
home and give my wife the purse  and don my fine clothes and return to
the marriage." And Ali  followed him. Now Zurayk had married a black
girl, one of the  freed women of the Wazir Ja'afar and she had borne
him a son,  whom he named Abdallah, and he had promised her to spend
the  money in the purse on the occasion of the boy's circumcision and 
of his marriage- procession. So he went into his house and, as he 
entered, his wife saw that his face was overcast and asked him,  "What
hath caused thy sadness?" Quoth he, "Allah hath  afflicted me this day
with a rascal who made seven attempts to get  the purse, but without
avail;" and quoth she, "Give it to me, that  I may lay it up against
the boy's festival-day." (Now Ali, who  had followed him lay hidden in
a closet whence he could see and hear all.) So he gave her the purse
and changed his clothes, saying,  "Keep the purse safely, O Umm
Abdallah, for I am going to  the wedding." But she said, "Take thy
sleep awhile." So he lay  down and fell asleep. Presently, Ali rose and
going on tiptoe to  the purse, took it and went to the house of the
wedding and stood  there, looking on at the fun. Now meanwhile, Zurayk
dreamt  that he saw a bird fly away with the purse and awaking in
affright,  said to his wife, "Rise; look for the purse." So she looked
and  finding it gone, buffeted her face and said, "Alas the blackness
of thy fortune, O Umm Abdallah! A sharker hath taken the purse."  Quoth
Zurayk, "By Allah it can be none other than rascal Ali  who hath
plagued me all day! He hath followed me home and  seized the purse; and
there is no help but that I go and get it  back." Quoth she, "Except
thou bring it, I will lock on thee  the door and leave thee to pass the
night in the street." So  he went up to the house of the wedding, and
seeing Ali looking  on, said to himself, "This is he who took the
purse; but he lodgeth  with Ahmad al-Danaf." So he forewent him to the
barrack and, climbing up at the back, dropped down into the saloon,
where he  found every one asleep. Presently there came a rap at the
door  and Zurayk asked, "Who is there!" "Ali of Cairo," answered the 
knocker; and Zurayk said, "Hast thou brought the purse?" So Ali thought
it was Hasan Shuman and replied, "I have brought  it;[FN#246] open the
door." Quoth Zurayk, "Impossible that I open to  thee till I see the
purse; for thy chief and I have laid a wager about it." Said Ali, "Put
out thy hand." So he put out his hand  through the hole in the
side-door and Ali laid the purse in it;  whereupon Zurayk took it and
going forth, as he had come in,  returned to the wedding. Ali stood for
a long while at the door,  but none opened to him; and at last he gave
a thundering knock  that awoke all the men and they said, "That is Ali
of Cairo's peculiar rap." So the hall-keeper opened to him and Hasan
Shuman said to him, "Hast thou brought the purse?" Replied Ali, "Enough
of jesting, O Shuman: didst thou not swear that thou wouldest not open
to me till I showed thee the purse, and did I not give it thee through
the hole in the side door? And didst thou not say to me, 'I am sworn
never to open the door till  thou show me the purse?'" Quoth Hasan, "By
Allah, 'twas not  I who took it, but Zurayk!" Quoth Ali, "Needs must I
get it  again," and repaired to the house of the wedding, where he
heard  the buffoon[FN#247] say, "Bravo,[FN#248] O Abu Abdallah! Good
luck to thee  with thy son!" Said Ali, "My luck is in the ascendant,"
and going to the fishmonger's lodging, climbed over the back wall of 
the house and found his wife asleep. So he drugged her with  Bhang and
clad himself in her clothes. Then he took the child in  his arms and
went round, searching, till he found a palm-leaf  basket containing
buns,[FN#249] which Zurayk of his niggardliness, had  kept from the
Greater Feast. Presently, the fishmonger returned and knocked at the
door, whereupon Ali imitated his wife's voice  and asked, "Who is at
the door?" "Abu Abdallah," answered  Zurayk and Ali said, "I swore that
I would not open the door to  thee, except thou broughtest back the
purse." Quoth the fish-monger, "I have brought it." Cried Ali, "Here
with it into my  hand before I open the door;" and Zurayk answered,
saying, "Let  down the basket and take it therein." So Sharper Ali let
down  the basket and the other put the purse therein, whereupon Ali 
took it and drugged the child. Then he aroused the woman and  making
off by the back way as he had entered, returned with the  child and the
purse and the basket of cakes to the barrack and  showed them all to
the Forty, who praised his dexterity. There-upon he gave them cakes,
which they ate, and made over the boy  to Hasan Shuman, saying, "This
is Zurayk's child; hide it by  thee." So he hid it and fetching a lamb,
gave it to the hall-keeper  who cooked it whole, wrapped in a cloth,
and laid it out shrouded  as it were a dead body. Meanwhile Zurayk
stood awhile, waiting  at the door, then gave a knock like thunder and
his wife said to him, "Hast thou brought the purse?" He replied, "Didst
thou not take it up in the basket thou diddest let down but now?"; and 
she rejoined, "I let no basket down to thee, nor have I set eyes  on
the purse." Quoth he, "By Allah the sharper hath been  beforehand with
me and hath taken the purse again!" Then he searched the house and
found the basket of cakes gone and the  child missing and cried out,
saying, "Alas, my child!" Where-upon the woman beat her breast and
said, "I and thee to the  Wazir, for none hath killed my son save this
sharper, and all  because of thee." Cried Zurayk, "I will answer for
him." So he  tied the kerchief of truce about his neck and going to
Ahmad  al-Danaf's lodging, knocked at the door. The hall- keeper
admitted him and as he entered Hasan Shuman asked him, "What  bringeth
thee here?" He answered, "Do ye intercede with Ali  the Cairene to
restore me my child and I will yield to him the  purse of gold." Quoth
Hasan, "Allah requite thee, O Ali! Why  didst thou not tell me it was
his child?" "What hath befallen  him?" cried Zurayk, and Hasan replied,
"We gave him raisins to  eat, and he choked and died and this is he."
Quoth Zurayk  "Alas, my son! What shall I say to his mother?" Then he
rose and opening the shroud, saw it was a lamb barbecued and  said,
"Thou makest sport of me, O Ali!" Then they gave him  the child and
Calamity Ahmad said to him, "Thou didst hang up  the purse, proclaiming
that it should be the property of any sharper  who should be able to
take it, and Ali hath taken it; so 'tis the  very property of our
Cairene." Zurayk answered "I make him  a present of it;" but Ali said
to him, "Do thou accept it on  account of thy niece Zaynab." And Zurayk
replied, "I accept it."  Then quoth the Forty, "We demand of thee
Zaynab in marriage  for Ali of Cairo;" but quoth he, "I have no control
over her save  of kindness." Hasan asked, "Dost thou grant our suit?";
and he  answered, "Yes, I will grant her in marriage to him who can
avail  to her mahr or marriage-settlement." "And what is her dowry?"
enquired Hasan; and Zurayk replied, "She hath sworn that none shall
mount her breast save the man who bringeth her the robe of  Kamar,
daughter of Azariah the Jew and the rest of her gear."—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Sixteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Zurayk
replied to Shuman, "She hath sworn that none shall ride astraddle upon
her breast save the man who bringeth her the clothes of Kamar, daughter
of Azariah the Jew and her crown and girdle and pantoufle[FN#250] of
gold," Ali cried, "If I do  not bring her the clothes this very night,
I renounce my claim to  her." Rejoined Zurayk, "O Ali, thou art a dead
man if thou play  any of thy pranks on Kamar." "Why so?" asked Ali and
the  other answered, "Her father, Jew Azariah, is a skilful, wily, 
perfidious magician who hath the Jinn at his service. He owneth 
without the city a castle, whose walls are one brick of gold and  one
of silver and which is visible to the folk only whilst he is  therein:
when he goeth forth, it disappeareth. He brought his  daughter this
dress I speak of from an enchanted treasure, and  every day he layeth
it in a charger of gold and, opening the  windows of the palace, crieth
out, 'Where are the sharpers of Cairo, the prigs of Al-Irak, the
master-thieves of Ajam-land?  Whoso prevaileth to take this dress, 'tis
his.' So all the long- fingered ones essayed the adventure, but failed
to take it, and he  turned them by his magic into apes and asses." But
Ali said, "I  will assuredly take it, and Zaynab shall be displayed
therein."[FN#251]  So he went to the shop of the Jew and found him a
man of stern  and forbidding aspect, seated with scales and
stone-weights and gold and silver and nests of drawers and so forth
before him, and  a she-mule tethered hard by. Presently he rose and
shutting his  shop, laid the gold and silver in two purses, which he
placed in a  pair of saddle-bags and set on the she-mule's back. Then
he  mounted and rode till he reached the city-outskirts followed,
with-out his knowledge, by Ali, when he took out some dust from a
pocket-purse and, muttering over it, sprinkled it upon the air. No 
sooner had he done this than sharper Ali saw a castle which had  not
its like, and the Jew mounted the steps upon his beast which  was a
subject Jinni; after which he dismounted and taking the  saddle-bags
off her back, dismissed the she-mule and she vanished.  Then he entered
the castle and sat down. Presently, he arose and opening the lattices,
took a wand of gold, which he set up in the  open window and, hanging
thereto a golden charger by chains of  the same metal, laid in it the
dress, whilst Ali watched him from  behind the door, and presently he
cried out, saying, "Where are  the sharpers of Cairo? Where are the
prigs of Al-Irak, the master-thieves of the Ajam-land? Whoso can take
this dress by his sleight, 'tis his!" Then he pronounced certain
magical words  and a tray of food spread itself before him. He ate and
conjured  a second time, whereupon the tray disappeared; and yet a
third  time, when a table of wine was placed between his hands and he 
drank. Quoth Ali, "I know not how I am to take the dress  except if he
be drunken." Then he stole up behind the Jew  whinger in grip; but the
other turned and conjured, saying to his  hand, "Hold with the sword;"
whereupon Ali's right arm was held  and abode half-way in the air
hending the hanger. He put out his  left hand to the weapon, but it
also stood fixed in the air, and so  with his right foot, leaving him
standing on one foot. Then the Jew dispelled the charm from him and Ali
became as before.  Presently Azariah struck a table of sand and found
that the thief's  name was Mercury Ali of Cairo; so he turned to him
and said,  "Come nearer! Who art thou and what dost thou here?" He 
replied, "I am Ali of Cairo, of the band of Ahmad al-Danaf. I sought
the hand of Zaynab, daughter of Dalilah the Wily, and  she demanded thy
daughter's dress to her dowry; so do thou give  it to me and become a
Moslem, an thou wouldst save thy life."  Rejoined the Jew, "After thy
death! Many have gone about to  steal the dress, but failed to take it
from me; wherefore an thou  deign be advised, thou wilt begone and save
thyself; for they only seek the dress of thee, that thou mayst fall
into destruction; and  indeed, had I not seen by geomancy that thy
fortune overrideth  my fortunes I had smitten thy neck." Ali rejoiced
to hear that  his luck overcame that of the Jew and said to him, "There
is no  help for it but I must have the dress and thou must become a
True  Believer." Asked the Jew, "Is this thy will and last word," and 
Ali answered, "Yes." So the Jew took a cup and filling it with  water,
conjured over it and said to Ali, "Come forth from this  shape of a man
into the form of an ass." Then he sprinkled him  with the water and
straightway he became a donkey, with hoofs  and long ears, and fell to
braying after the manner of asinines.  The Jew drew round him a circle
which became a wall over  against him, and drank on till the morning,
when he said to Ali,  "I will ride thee to-day and give the she-mule a
rest." So he  locked up the dress, the charger, the rod and the charms
in a cupboard[FN#252] and conjured over Ali, who followed him. Then he 
set the saddle-bags on his back and mounting, fared forth of the 
Castle, whereupon it disappeared from sight and he rode into Baghdad,
till he came to his shop, where he alighted and emptied  the bags of
gold and silver into the trays before him. As for Ali,  he was tied up
by the shop- door, where he stood in his asinine  form hearing and
understanding all that passed, without being  able to speak. And
behold, up came a young merchant with  whom fortune had played the
tyrant and who could find no easier  way of earning his livelihood than
water-carrying. So he brought  his wife's bracelets to the Jew and said
to him, "Give me the  price of these bracelets, that I may buy me an
ass." Asked the  Jew, "What wilt thou do with him?"; and the other
answered,  "O master, I mean to fetch water from the river on his back,
and earn my living thereby." Quoth the Jew, "Take this ass of mine." 
So he sold him the bracelets and received the ass- shaped Ali of  Cairo
in part payment and carried him home. Quoth Ali to himself,  "If the
Ass-man clap the pannel on thee and load thee with  water-skins and go
with thee half a score journeys a day he will  ruin thy health and thou
wilt die." So, when the water-carrier's wife came to bring him his
fodder, he butted her with his head  and she fell on her back;
whereupon he sprang on her and smiting  her brow with his mouth, put
out and displayed that which his  begetter left him. She cried aloud
and the neighbours came to  her assistance and beat him and raised him
off her breast. When her husband the intended water-carrier came home,
she said to him, "Now either divorce me or return the ass to his
owner." He  asked, "What hath happened?"; and she answered, "This is a
devil in the guise of a donkey. He sprang upon me, and had not the
neighbours beaten him off my bosom he had done with me a foul thing."
So he carried the ass back to the Jew, who said to him, "Wherefore hast
thou brought him back?" and he replied, "He did a foul thing with my
wife." So the Jew gave him his money again and he went away; and
Azariah said to Ali, "Hast thou recourse to knavery, unlucky wretch
that thou art, in  order that"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Seventeenth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when  the
water-carrier brought back the ass, its Jew owner returned to  him the
monies and turning to Ali of Cairo said, "Hast thou  recourse to
knavery, unlucky wretch that thou art, in order that  he may return
thee to me? But since it pleaseth thee to be an  ass, I will make thee
a spectacle and a laughing stock to great and  small." Then he mounted
him and rode till he came without the city, when he brought out the
ashes in powder and conjuring over  it sprinkled it upon the air and
immediately the Castle appeared.  He entered and taking the saddle-bags
off the ass's back set up the rod and hung to it the charger wherein
were the clothes  proclaiming aloud, "Where be the clever ones of all
quarters who  may avail to take this dress?" Then he conjured as before
and meat was set before him and he ate and then wine when he drank; 
after which he took a cup of water and muttering certain words 
thereover, sprinkled it on the ass Ali, saying, "Quit this form and 
return to thy former shape." Ali straightway became a man once  more
and Azariah said to him, "O Ali, take good advice and be  content with
my mischief. Thou hast no call to marry Zaynab  nor to take my
daughter's dress, for 'tis no easy matter for thee:  so leave greed and
'twill be better for thee; else will I turn thee  into a bear or an ape
or set on thee an Ifrit, who will cast thee  behind the Mountain Kaf."
He replied, "I have engaged to take  the dress and needs must I have it
and thou must Islamize or I will slay thee." Rejoined the Jew, "O Ali,
thou art like a walnut;  unless it be broken it cannot be eaten." Then
he took a cup of  water and conjuring over it, sprinkled Ali with
somewhat thereof,  saying, "Take thou shape of bear;" whereupon he
instantly  became a bear and the Jew put a collar about his neck,
muzzled him  and chained him to a picket of iron. Then he sat down and
ate  and drank, now and then throwing him a morsel of his orts and
emptying the dregs of the cup over him, till the morning, when he  rose
and laid by the tray and the dress and conjured over the  bear, which
followed him to the shop. There the Jew sat down  and emptied the gold
and silver into the trays before Ali, after  binding him by the chain;
and the bear there abode seeing and comprehending but not able to
speak. Presently up came a man and a merchant, who accosted the Jew and
said to him, "O Master,  wilt thou sell me yonder bear? I have a wife
who is my cousin  and is sick; and they have prescribed for her to eat
bears' flesh  and anoint herself with bears' grease." At this the Jew
rejoiced  and said to himself, "I will sell him to this merchant, so he
may  slaughter him and we be at peace from him." And Ali also said in 
his mind, "By Allah, this fellow meaneth to slaughter me; but
deliverance is with the Almighty." Then said the Jew, "He is a  present
from me to thee." So the merchant took him and carried  him to the
butcher, to whom he said, "Bring thy tools and  company me." The
butcher took his knives and followed the merchant  to his house, where
he bound the beast and fell to sharpening his blade: but, when he went
up to him to slaughter him, the bear escaped from his hands and rising
into the air, disappeared from sight between heaven and earth; nor did
he cease flying till he  alighted at the Jew's castle. Now the reason
thereof was on this  wise. When the Jew returned home, his daughter
questioned him  of Ali and he told her what had happened; whereupon she
said,  "Summon a Jinni and ask him of the youth, whether he be indeed 
Mercury Ali or another who seeketh to put a cheat on thee." So  Azariah
called a Jinni by conjurations and questioned him of Ali;  and he
replied, "'Tis Ali of Cairo himself. The butcher hath  pinioned him and
whetted his knife to slaughter him." Quoth the  Jew, "Go, snatch him up
and bring him hither, ere the butcher cut  his throat." So the Jinni
flew off and, snatching Ali out of the butcher's hands, bore him to the
palace and set him down before the Jew, who took a cup of water and
conjuring over it, sprinkled  him therewith, saying, "Return to thine
own shape." And he  straightway became a man again as before. The Jew's
daughter  Kamar,[FN#253] seeing him to be a handsome young man, fell in
love with  him and he fell in love with her; and she said to him, "O
unlucky  one, why dost thou go about to take my dress, enforcing my
father  to deal thus with thee?" Quoth he, "I have engaged to get it
for  Zaynab the Coney-catcher, that I may wed her therewith." And  she
said, "Others than thou have played pranks with my father to  get my
dress, but could not win to it," presently adding, "So put away this
thought from thee." But he answered, "Needs must I have it, and thy
father must become a Moslem, else I will slay him." Then said the Jew,
"See, O my daughter, how this unlucky fellow seeketh his own
destruction," adding, "Now I will  turn thee into a dog." So he took a
cup graven with characters  and full of water and conjuring over it,
sprinkled some of it upon  Ali, saying, "Take thou form of dog."
Whereupon he straight-way became a dog, and the Jew and his daughter
drank together  till the morning, when the father laid up the dress and
charger  and mounted his mule. Then he conjured over the dog, which 
followed him, as he rode towards the town, and all dogs barked at 
Ali[FN#254] as he passed, till he came to the shop of a broker, a
seller of  second-hand goods, who rose and drove away the dogs, and Ali
 lay down before him. The Jew turned and looked for him, but finding
him not, passed onwards. Presently, the broker shut up  his shop and
went home, followed by the dog, which, when his  daughter saw enter the
house, she veiled her face and said, "O my papa, dost thou bring a
strange man in to me?" He replied, "O my daughter, this is a dog."
Quoth she, "Not so, 'tis Ali the Cairene, whom the Jew Azariah hath
enchanted;" and she turned to the dog and said to him, "Art not Ali of
Cairo?" And he signed to her with his head, "Yes." Then her father
asked her, "Why did the Jew enchant him?"; and she answered, "Because 
of his daughter Kamar's dress; but I can release him." Said the broker,
"An thou canst indeed do him this good office, now is the  time," and
she, "If he will marry me, I will release him." And  he signed to her
with his head, "Yes."  So she took a cup of  water, graven with certain
signs and conjuring over it, was about  to sprinkle Ali therewith, when
lo and behold! she heard a great  cry and the cup fell from her hand.
She turned and found that it  was her father's handmaid, who had cried
out; and she said to  her, "O my mistress, is't thus thou keepest the
covenant between  me and thee? None taught thee this art save I, and
thou didst  agree with me that thou wouldst do naught without
consulting  me and that whoso married thee should marry me also, and
that  one night should be mine and one night thine." And the broker's
daughter said, "'Tis well." When the broker heard the maid's  words, he
asked his daughter, "Who taught the maid?"; and  she answered, "O my
papa, enquire of herself." So he put the  question and she replied,
"Know, O my lord, that, when I was  with Azariah the Jew, I used to spy
upon him and listen to him,  when he performed his gramarye; and when
he went forth to his  shop in Baghdad, I opened his books and read in
them, till I  became skilled in the Cabbala-science. One day, he was
warm  with wine and would have me lie with him, but I objected, saying,
'I may not grant thee this except thou become a Moslem.' He refused and
I said to him, 'Now for the Sultan's market.'[FN#255] So he  sold me to
thee and I taught my young mistress, making it a  condition with her
that she should do naught without my counsel,  and that whoso might wed
her should wed me also, one night  for me and one night for her." Then
she took a cup of water and  conjuring over it, sprinkled the dog
therewith; saying, "Return  thou to form of man." And he straightway
was restored to his former shape; whereupon the broker saluted him with
the salam  and asked him the reason of his enchantment. So Ali told him
 all that had passed—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day  and
ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Eighteenth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the broker,
having saluted Ali of Cairo with the salam, asked him the  reason of
his enchantment and what had befallen him; and he  answered by telling
him all that had passed, when the broker said  to him, "Will not my
daughter and the handmaid suffice thee?"  but he answered, "Needs must
I have Zaynab also."  Now  suddenly there came a rap at the door and
the maid said, "Who  is at the door?"  The knocker replied, "Kamar,
daughter of  Azariah the Jew; say me, is Ali of Cairo with you?"
Replied  the broker's daughter, "O thou daughter of a dog! If he be 
with us, what wilt thou with him? Go down, O maid, and open  to her." 
So the maid let her in, and when she looked upon  Ali and he upon her,
he said,  "What bringeth thee hither  O dog's daughter?"  Quoth she, "I
testify that there is no  god but the God and I testify that Mohammed
is the Apostle  of God." And, having thus Islamised, she asked him, "Do
men  in the Faith of Al-Islam give marriage portions to women or  do
women dower men?"  Quoth he, "Men endow women."  "Then," said she, "I
come and dower myself for thee, bringing thee, as my marriage-portion,
my dress together with the rod and charger and chains and the head of
my father,  the enemy of thee and the foeman of Allah." And she threw 
down the Jew's head before him.  Now the cause of her  slaying her sire
was as follows.  On the night of his turning  Ali into a dog, she saw,
in a dream, a speaker who said to her,  "Become a Moslemah." She did
so; and as soon as she awoke  next morning she expounded Al-Islam to
her father who  refused to embrace the Faith; so she drugged him with
Bhang  and killed him. As for Ali, he took the gear and said to the 
broker, "Meet we to-morrow at the Caliph's Divan, that I may  take thy
daughter and the handmaid to wife." Then he set out rejoicing, to
return to the barrack of the Forty. On his way he  met a sweetmeat
seller, who was beating hand upon hand and saying, "There is no Majesty
and there is no Might save in Allah,  the Glorious, the Great! Folk's
labour hath waxed sinful and  man is active only in fraud!" Then said
he to Ali, "I conjure  thee, by Allah, taste of this confection!"  So
Ali took a piece  and ate it and fell down senseless, for there was
Bhang therein; whereupon the sweetmeat-seller seized the dress and the
charger  and the rest of the gear and thrusting them into the box where
 he kept his sweetmeats hoisted it up and made off. Presently he  met a
Kazi, who called to him, saying, "Come hither, O sweet-meat seller!" So
he went up to him and setting down his sack  laid the tray of
sweetmeats upon it and asked, "What dost thou want?" "Halwá and
dragées,[FN#256]" answered the Kazi and, taking  some in his hand,
said, "Both of these are adulterated." Then  he brought out sweetmeats
from his breast-pocket[FN#257] and gave them to the sweetmeat-seller,
saying, "Look at this fashion; how excellent it is! Eat of it and make
the like of it." So he ate and fell down senseless, for the sweetmeats
were drugged with Bhang, whereupon the Kazi bundled him into the sack
and made off with him, charger and chest and all, to the barrack of the
Forty. Now the Judge in question was Hasan Shuman and the reason of
this was as follows. When Ali had been gone some days in quest of the
dress and they heard no news of him, Calamity Ahmad said to his men, "O
lads, go and seek for your brother Ali of Cairo." So they sallied forth
in quest of him and  among the rest Hasan Shuman the Pestilence,
disguised in a Kazi's  gear.  He came upon the sweetmeat-seller and,
knowing him  for Ahmad al-Lakit[FN#258] suspected him of having played
some trick  upon Ali; so he drugged him and did as we have seen.
Mean-while, the other Forty fared about the streets and highways 
making search in different directions, and amongst them Ali  Kitf
al-Jamal, who espying a crowd, made towards the people  and found the
Cairene Ali lying drugged and senseless in their  midst. So he revived
him and he came to himself and seeing the  folk flocking around him
asked, "Where am I?"  Answered  Ali Camel-shoulder and his comrades,
"We found thee lying here  drugged but know not who drugged thee."
Quoth Ali, "'Twas  a certain sweetmeat-seller who drugged me and took
the gear  from me; but where is he gone?" Quoth his comrades, "We  have
seen nothing of him; but come, rise and go home with  us." So they
returned to the barrack, where they found Ahmad al-Danaf, who greeted
Ali and enquired if he had brought the  dress.  He replied, "I was
coming hither with it and other  matters, including the Jew's head,
when a sweetmeat-seller met  me and drugged me with Bhang and took them
from me." Then  he told him the whole tale ending with, "If I come
across that man of goodies again, I will requite him."  Presently Hasan
 Shuman came out of a closet and said to him, "Hast thou gotten  the
gear, O Ali?" So he told him what had befallen him and  added, "If I
know whither the rascal is gone and where to  find the knave, I would
pay him out. Knowest thou whither  he went?" Answered Hasan, "I know
where he is," and  opening the door of the closet, showed him the
sweetmeat-seller  within, drugged and senseless.  Then he aroused  him
and he opened his eyes and finding himself in presence of  Mercury Ali
and Calamity Ahmad and the Forty, started up and  said, "Where am I and
who hath laid hands on me?" Replied  Shuman, "'Twas I laid hands on
thee;" and Ali cried, "O  perfidious wretch, wilt thou play thy pranks
on me?" And he  would have slain him: but Hasan said to him, "Hold thy
hand  for this fellow is become thy kinsman."  "How my kinsman?"  quoth
Ali; and quoth Hasan, "This is Ahmad al- Lakit son of  Zaynab's
sister." Then said Ali to the prisoner, "Why didst thou  thus, O
Lakit?" and he replied, "My grandmother, Dalilah the  Wily, bade me do
it; only because Zurayk the fishmonger fore-gathered with the old woman
and said, 'Mercury Ali of Cairo is  a sharper and a past master in
knavery, and he will certainly slay  the Jew and bring hither the
dress.'  So she sent for me and  said to me, 'O Ahmad, dost thou know
Ali of Cairo?' Answered  I, 'Indeed I do and 'twas I directed him to
Ahmad al-Danaf's  lodging when he first came to Baghdad.' Quoth she,
'Go and set  thy nets for him, and if he have brought back the gear,
put a  cheat on him and take it from him.' So I went round about the 
highways of the city, till I met a sweetmeat-seller and buying his
clothes and stock-in-trade and gear for ten dinars, did what was done."
Thereupon quoth Ali, "Go back to thy grandmother and  Zurayk, and tell
them that I have brought the gear and the Jew's  head and say to them,
'Meet me to-morrow at the Caliph's Divan, there to receive Zaynab's
dowry.' " And Calamity Ahmad  rejoiced in this and said, "We have not
wasted our pains in rearing thee, O Ali!"  Next morning Ali took the
dress, the  charger, the rod and the chains of gold, together with the
head of  Azariah the Jew mounted on a pike, and went up, accompanied 
by Ahmad al-Danaf and the Forty, to the Divan, where they  kissed
ground before the Caliph—And Shahrazad perceived  the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Nineteenth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Ali the
Cairene went up to the Caliph's Divan, accompanied by his uncle Ahmad
al-Danaf and his lads they kissed ground before the  Caliph who turned
and seeing a youth of the most valiant aspect,  enquired of Calamity
Ahmad concerning him and he replied, "O Commander of the Faithful, this
is Mercury Ali the Egyptian  captain of the brave boys of Cairo, and he
is the first of my lads."  And the Caliph loved him for the valour that
shone from between  his eyes, testifying for him and not against him.
Then Ali rose;  and, casting the Jew's head down before him, said, "May
thine  every enemy be like this one, O Prince of True Believers!" 
Quoth Al-Rashid, "Whose head is this?"; and quoth Ali, "'Tis  the head
of Azariah the Jew." "Who slew him?" asked the  Caliph. So Ali related
to him all that had passed, from first to  last, and the Caliph said,
"I had not thought thou wouldst kill  him, for that he was a sorcerer."
Ali replied, "O Commander of the Faithful, my Lord made me prevail to
his slaughter." Then  the Caliph sent the Chief of Police to the Jew's
palace, where he found him lying headless; so he laid the body on a
bier,[FN#259] and  carried it to Al-Rashid, who commanded to burn it.
Whereat,  behold, up came Kamar and kissing the ground before the
Caliph,  informed him that she was the daughter of Jew Azariah and that
 she had become a Moslemah. Then she renewed her profession of Faith
before the Commander of the Faithful and said to him  "Be thou my
intercessor with Sharper Ali that he take me to  wife." She also
appointed him her guardian to consent to her  marriage with the
Cairene, to whom he gave the Jew's palace and  all its contents,
saying, "Ask a boon of me." Quoth Ali, "I beg  of thee to let me stand
on thy carpet and eat of thy table;" and  quoth the Caliph, "O Ali,
hast thou any lads?" He replied, "I  have forty lads; but they are in
Cairo." Rejoined the Caliph,  "Send to Cairo and fetch them hither,"
presently adding, "But,  O Ali, hast thou a barrack for them?" "No,"
answered Ali;  and Hasan Shuman said, "I make him a present of my
barrack  with all that is therein, O Commander of the Faithful." 
However, the Caliph retorted, saying, "Thy lodging is thine own, O 
Hasan;" and he bade his treasurer give the court architect ten thousand
dinars, that he might build Ali a hall with four daïses  and forty
sleeping-closets for his lads. Then said he, "O Ali, hast thou any
further wish, that we may command its fulfilment?";  and said Ali, "O
King of the age, be thou my intercessor with  Dalilah the Wily that she
give me her daughter Zaynab to wife  and take the dress and gear of
Azariah's girl in lieu of dower."  Dalilah accepted the Caliph's
intercession and accepted the  charger and dress and what not, and they
drew up the marriage  contracts between Ali and Zaynab and Kamar, the
Jew's daughter  and the broker's daughter and the handmaid. Moreover,
the  Caliph assigned him a solde with a table morning and evening,  and
stipends and allowances for fodder; all of the most liberal. Then Ali
the Cairene fell to making ready for the wedding  festivities and,
after thirty days, he sent a letter to his comrades in  Cairo, wherein
he gave them to know of the favours and honours  which the Caliph had
bestowed upon him and said, "I have  married four maidens and needs
must ye come to the wedding." So, after a reasonable time the forty
lads arrived and they held high festival; he homed them in his barrack
and entreated them with the utmost regard and presented them to the
Caliph, who bestowed on them robes of honour and largesse. Then the
tiring-women displayed Zaynab before Ali in the dress of the Jew's 
daughter, and he went in unto her and found her a pearl unthridden and
a filly by all save himself unridden. Then he went in unto the three
other maidens and found them accomplished  in beauty and loveliness.
After this it befel that Ali of Cairo was  one night on guard by the
Caliph who said to him, "I wish thee  O Ali, to tell me all that hath
befallen thee from first to last with  Dalilah the Wily and Zaynab the
Coney-catcher and Zurayk the Fishmonger." So Ali related to him all his
adventures and the  Commander of the Faithful bade record them and lay
them up in  the royal muniment-rooms. So they wrote down all that had 
befallen him and kept it in store with other histories for the  people
of Mohammed the Best of Men. And Ali and his wives  and comrades abode
in all solace of life, and its joyance, till there  came to them the
Destroyer of Delights and Sunderer of Societies; and Allah (be He
extolled and exalted!) is All- knowing![FN#260] And  also men relate
the tale of


There was once in the city of Shí­ráz a mighty King called Sayf
al-A'azam Shah, who had grown old, without being blessed with a son. So
he summoned the physicists and physicians and said to them, "I am now
in years and ye know my case and the state of the kingdom and its
ordinance; and I fear for my subjects after me; for that up to this
present I have not been vouchsafed a son." Thereupon they replied, "We
will compound thee a somewhat of drugs wherein shall be efficacy, if it
please Almighty Allah!" So they mixed him drugs, which he used and knew
his wife carnally, and she conceived by leave of the Most High Lord,
who saith to a thing, "Be," and it becometh. When her months were
accomplished, she gave birth to a male child like the moon, whom his
father named Ardashir,[FN#262] and he grew up and throve and applied
himself to the study of learning and letters, till he attained the age
of fifteen. Now there was in Al-Irak a King called Abd al-Kádir who had
a daughter, by name Hayát al-Nufús, and she was like the rising full
moon, but she had an hatred for men and the folk very hardly dared name
mankind in her presence. The Kings of the Chosroës had sought her in
marriage of her sire; but, when he spoke with her thereof, she said,
"Never will I do this; and if thou force me thereto, I will slay
myself." Now Prince Ardashir heard of her fame and fell in love with
her and told his father who, seeing his case, took pity on him and
promised him day by day that he should marry her. So he despatched his
Wazir to demand her in wedlock, but King Abd al-Kadir refused, and when
the Minister returned to King Sayf al-A'azam and acquainted him with
what had befallen his mission and the failure thereof, he was wroth
with exceeding wrath and cried, "Shall the like of me send to one of
the Kings on a requisition and he accomplish it not?" Then he bade a
herald make proclamation to his troops, bidding them bring out the
tents and equip them for war with all diligence, though they should
borrow money for the necessary expenses; and he said, "I will on no
wise turn back, till I have laid waste King Abd al-Kadir's dominions
and slain his men and plundered his treasures and blotted out his
traces!" When the report of this reached Ardashir he rose from his
carpet-bed, and going in to his father, kissed ground[FN#263] between
his hands and said, "O mighty King, trouble not thyself with aught of
this thing"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Twentieth Night,

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when report
of this reached the Prince he went in to his sire the King and, kissing
ground between his hands, said, "O mighty King, trouble not thy soul
with aught of this thing and levy not thy champions and armies neither
spend thy monies. Thou art stronger than he, and if thou loose upon him
this thy host, thou wilt lay waste his cities and dominions and spoil
his good and slay his strong men and himself; but when his daughter
shall come to know what hath befallen her father and his people by
reason of her, she will slay herself, and I shall die on her account;
for I can never live after her; no, never." Asked the King, "And what
then thinkest thou to do, O my son?" and the Prince answered, "I will
don a merchant's habit and cast about how I may win to the Princess and
compass my desire of her." Quoth Sayf al-A'azam, "Art thou determined
upon this?"; and quoth the Prince, "Yes, O my sire;" whereupon the King
called to his Wazir, and said to him, "Do thou journey with my son, the
core of my heart, and help him to win his will and watch over him and
guide him with thy sound judgment, for thou standest to him even in my
stead." "I hear and obey," answered the Minister; and the King gave his
son three hundred thousand dinars in gold and great store of jewels and
precious stones and goldsmiths' ware and stuffs and other things of
price. Then Prince Ardashir went in to his mother and kissed her hands
and asked her blessing. She blessed him and, forthright opening her
treasures, brought out to him necklaces and trinkets and apparel and
all manner of other costly objects hoarded up from the time of the
bygone Kings, whose price might not be evened with coin. Moreover, he
took with him of his Mamelukes and negro-slaves and cattle all that he
needed for the road and clad himself and the Wazir and their company in
traders' gear. Then he farewelled his parents and kinsfolk and friends;
and, setting out, fared on over wolds and wastes all hours of the day
and watches of the night; and whenas the way was longsome upon him he
improvised these couplets,

"My longing bred of love with mine unease for ever grows; *
     Nor against all the wrongs of time one succourer arose:
When Pleiads and the Fishes show in sky the rise I watch, * As
     worshipper within whose breast a pious burning glows:
For Star o' Morn I speer until at last when it is seen, * I'm
     madded with my passion and my fancy's woes and throes:
I swear by you that never from your love have I been loosed; *
     Naught am I save a watcher who of slumber nothing knows!
Though hard appear my hope to win, though languor aye
     increase, * And after thee my patience fails and ne'er a
     helper shows;
Yet will I wait till Allah shall be pleased to join our loves;
     * I'll mortify the jealous and I'll mock me of my foes."

When he ended his verse he swooned away and the Wazir sprinkled
rose-water on him, till the Prince came to himself, when the Minister
said to him, "O King's son, possess thy soul in patience; for the
consequence of patience is consolation, and behold, thou art on the way
to whatso thou wishest." And he ceased not to bespeak him fair and
comfort him till his trouble subsided; and they continued their journey
with all diligence. Presently, the Prince again became impatient of the
length of the way and bethought him of his beloved and recited these

"Longsome is absence, restlessness increaseth and despite; *
     And burn my vitals in the blaze my love and longings
Grows my hair gray from pains and pangs which I am doomèd bear
     * For pine, while tear-floods stream from eyes and sore
     offend my sight:
I swear, O Hope of me, O End of every wish and will, * By Him
     who made mankind and every branch with leafage dight,
A passion-load for thee, O my Desire, I must endure, * And
     boast I that to bear such load no lover hath the might.
Question the Night of me and Night thy soul shall satisfy *
     Mine eyelids never close in sleep throughout the livelong

Then he wept with sore weeping and 'plained of that he suffered for
stress of love-longing; but the Wazir comforted him and spoke him fair,
promising him the winning of his wish; after which they fared on again
for a few days, when they drew near to the White City, the capital of
King Abd al-Kadir, soon after sunrise. Then said the Minister to the
Prince, "Rejoice, O King's son, in all good; for see, yonder is the
White City, that which thou seekest." Whereat the Prince rejoiced with
exceeding joy and recited these couplets,

"My friends, I yearn in heart distraught for him; * Longing
     abides and with sore pains I brim:
I mourn like childless mother, nor can find       * One to
     console me when the light grows dim;
Yet when the breezes blow from off thy land,      * I feel
     their freshness shed on heart and limb;
And rail mine eyes like water-laden clouds,       * While in a
     tear-sea shed by heart I swim."

Now when they entered the White City they asked for the Merchants'
Khan, a place of moneyed men; and when shown the hostelry they hired
three magazines and on receiving the keys[FN#264] they laid up therein
all their goods and gear. They abode in the Khan till they were rested,
when the Wazir applied himself to devise a device for the Prince,—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Prince and
the Minister alighted at the Khan and lodged their goods in the
ground-floor magazines and there settled their servants. Then they
tarried awhile till they had rested, when the Wazir arose and applied
himself to devise a device for the Prince, and said to him, "I have
bethought me of somewhat wherein, methinks, will be success for thee,
so it please Almighty Allah." Quoth Ardashir, "O thou Wazir of good
counsel, do what cometh to thy mind, and may the Lord direct thy rede
aright!" Quoth the Minister, "I purpose to hire thee a shop in the
market-street of the stuff-sellers and set thee therein; for that all,
great and small, have recourse to the bazar and, meseems, when the folk
see thee with their own eyes sitting in the shop their hearts will
incline to thee and thou wilt thus be enabled to attain thy desire, for
thou art fair of favour and souls incline to thee and sight rejoiceth
in thee." The other replied, "Do what seemeth good to thee." So the
Wazir forthright began to robe the Prince and himself in their richest
raiment and, putting a purse of a thousand dinars in his breast-pocket,
went forth and walked about the city, whilst all who looked upon them
marvelled at the beauty of the King's son, saying, "Glory be to Him who
created this youth 'of vile water[FN#265]'! Blessed be Allah
excellentest of Creators!" Great was the talk anent him and some said,
"This is no mortal, 'this is naught save a noble angel'";[FN#266] and
others, "Hath Rizwan, the door-keeper of the Eden-garden, left the gate
of Paradise unguarded, that this youth hath come forth?" The people
followed them to the stuff- market, where they entered and stood, till
there came up to them an old man of dignified presence and venerable
appearance, who saluted them, and they returned his salam. Then the
Shaykh said to them, "O my lords, have ye any need, that we may have
the honour of accomplishing?"; and the Wazir asked him, "Who art thou,
O elder?" He answered, "I am the Overseer of the market." Quoth the
Wazir, "Know then, O Shaykh, that this youth is my son and I wish to
hire him a shop in the bazar, that he may sit therein and learn to sell
and buy and take and give, and come to ken merchants' ways and habits."
"I hear and I obey," replied the Overseer and brought them without stay
or delay the key of a shop, which he caused the brokers sweep and
clean. And they did his bidding. Then the Wazir sent for a high
mattress, stuffed with ostrich-down, and set it up in the shop,
spreading upon it a small prayer-carpet, and a cushion fringed with
broidery of red gold. Moreover he brought pillows and transported
thither so much of the goods and stuffs that he had brought with him as
filled the shop. Next morning the young Prince came and opening the
shop, seated himself on the divan, and stationed two Mamelukes, clad in
the richest of raiment before him and two black slaves of the goodliest
of the Abyssinians in the lower part of the shop. The Wazir enjoined
him to keep his secret from the folk, so thereby he might find aid in
the winning of his wishes; then he left him and charging him to
acquaint him with what befel him in the shop, day by day returned to
the Khan. The Prince sat in the shop till night as he were the moon at
its fullest, whilst the folk, hearing tell of his comeliness, flocked
to the place, without errand, to gaze on his beauty and loveliness and
symmetry and perfect grace and glorify the Almighty who created and
shaped him, till none could pass through that bazar for the excessive
crowding of the folk about him. The King's son turned right and left,
abashed at the throng of people that stared at him, hoping to make
acquaintance with some one about the court, of whom he might get news
of the Princess; but he found no way to this, wherefore his breast was
straitened. Meanwhile, the Wazir daily promised him the attainment of
his desire and the case so continued for a time till, one morning, as
the youth sat in the shop, there came up an old woman of respectable
semblance and dignified presence clad in raiment of devotees[FN#267]
and followed by two slave-girls like moons. She stopped before the shop
and, having considered the Prince awhile, cried, "Glory be to God who
fashioned that face and perfected that figure!" Then she saluted him
and he returned her salam and seated her by his side. Quoth she,
"Whence cometh thou, O fair of favour?"; and quoth he, "From the parts
of Hind, O my mother; and I have come to this city to see the world and
look about me." "Honour to thee for a visitor! What goods and stuffs
hast thou? Show me something handsome, fit for Kings." "If thou wish
for handsome stuffs, I will show them to thee; for I have wares that
beseem persons of every condition." "O my son, I want somewhat costly
of price and seemly to sight; brief, the best thou hast." "Thou must
needs tell me for whom thou seekest it, that I may show thee goods
according to the rank of the requiter." "Thou speakest sooth, O my
son," said she. "I want somewhat for my mistress, Hayat al-Nufus,
daughter of Abd al-Kadir, lord of this land and King of this country."
Now when Ardashir heard his mistress's name, his reason flew for joy
and his heart fluttered and he gave no order to slave or servant, but,
putting his hand behind him, pulled out a purse of an hundred dinars
and offered it to the old woman, saying, "This is for the washing of
thy clothes." Then he again put forth his hand and brought out of a
wrapper a dress worth ten thousand dinars or more and said to her,
"This is of that which I have brought to your country." When the old
woman saw it, it pleased her and she asked, "What is the price of this
dress, O perfect in qualities?" Answered he, "I will take no price for
it!" whereupon she thanked him and repeated her question; but he said,
"By Allah, I will take no price for it. I make thee a present of it, an
the Princess will not accept it and 'tis a guest-gift from me to thee.
Alham- dolillah—Glory be to God—who hath brought us together, so that,
if one day I have a want, I shall find in thee a helper to me in
winning it!" She marvelled at the goodliness of his speech and the
excess of his generosity and the perfection of his courtesy and said to
him, "What is thy name, O my lord?" He replied, "My name is Ardashir;"
and she cried, "By Allah this is a rare name! Therewith are Kings' sons
named, and thou art in a guise of the sons of the merchants!" Quoth he,
"Of the love my father bore me, he gave me this name, but a name
signifieth naught;" and quoth she in wonder, "O my son, take the price
of thy goods." But he swore that he would not take aught. Then the old
lady said to him, "O my dear one, Truth (I would have thee know) is the
greatest of all things and thou hadst not dealt thus generously by me
but for a special reason: so tell me thy case and thy secret thought;
belike thou hast some wish to whose winning I may help thee." Thereupon
he laid his hand in hers and, after exacting an oath of secrecy, told
her the whole story of his passion for the Princess and his condition
by reason thereof. The old woman shook her head and said, "True; but O
my son, the wise say, in the current adage, 'An thou wouldest be
obeyed, abstain from ordering what may not be made'; and thou, my son,
thy name is Merchant, and though thou hadst the keys of the Hidden
Hoards, yet wouldst thou be called naught but Merchant. An thou wouldst
rise to high rank, according to thy station, then seek the hand of a
Kazi's daughter or even an Emir's; but why, O my son, aspirest thou to
none but the daughter of the King of the age and the time, and she a
clean maid, who knoweth nothing of the things of the world and hath
never in her life seen anything but her palace wherein she dwelleth?
Yet, for all her tender age, she is intelligent, shrewd, vivacious,
penetrating, quick of wit, sharp of act and rare of rede: her father
hath no other child and she is dearer to him than his life and soul.
Every morning he cometh to her and giveth her good-morrow, and all who
dwell in the palace stand in dread of her. Think not, O my son, that
any dare bespeak her with aught of these words; nor is there any way
for me thereto. By Allah, O my son, my heart and vitals love thee and
were it in my power to give thee access to her, I would assuredly do
it; but I will tell thee somewhat, wherein Allah may haply appoint the
healing of thy heart, and will risk life and goods for thee, till I win
thy will for thee." He asked, "And what is that, O my mother?" and she
answered, "Seek of me the daughter of a Wazir or an Emir, and I will
grant thy request; but it may not be that one should mount from earth
to heaven at one bound." When the Prince heard this, he replied to her
with courtesy and sense, "O my mother, thou art a woman of wit and
knowest how things go. Say me doth a man, when his head irketh him,
bind up his hand?" Quoth she, "No, by Allah, O my son"; and quoth he,
"Even so my heart seeketh none but her and naught slayeth me but love
of her. By Allah, I am a dead man, and I find not one to counsel me
aright and succour me! Allah upon thee, O my mother, take pity on my
strangerhood and the streaming of my tears!"—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Ardashir, the
King's son said to the old woman, "Allah upon thee, O my mother, take
pity on my strangerhood and the streaming of my tears." Replied she,
"By Allah, O my son, thy words rend my heart, but my hand hath no
cunning wherewith to help thee." Quoth he, "I beseech thee of thy
favour, carry her a letter and kiss her hands for me." So she had
compassion on him and said, "Write what thou wilt and I will bear it to
her." When he heard this, he was ready to fly for joy and calling for
ink-case and paper, wrote these couplets,

"O Hayát al-Nufús, be gen'rous, and incline * To one who
     loving thee for parting's doomed to pine.
I was in all delight, in gladsomest of life, * But now I am
     distraught with sufferings condign.
To wakefulness I cling through longsomeness of night * And
     with me sorrow chats[FN#268] through each sad eve of
Pity a lover sad, a sore afflicted wretch * Whose eyelids
     ever ulcered are with tearful brine;
And when the morning comes at last, the real morn * He finds
     him drunken and distraught with passion's wine."

Then he folded the scroll and kissing it, gave it to the old woman;
after which he put his hand to a chest and took out a second purse
containing an hundred dinars, which he presented to her, saying,
"Divide this among the slave-girls." She refused it and cried, "By
Allah, O my son, I am not with thee for aught of this!"; however, he
thanked her and answered, "There is no help but that thou accept of
it." So she took it and kissing his hands, returned home; and going in
to the Princess, cried, "O my lady, I have brought thee somewhat the
like whereof is not with the people of our city, and it cometh from a
handsome young man, than whom there is not a goodlier on earth's face!"
She asked "O my nurse, and whence cometh the youth?" and the old woman
answered, "From the parts of Hind; and he hath given me this dress of
gold brocade, embroidered with pearls and gems and worth the Kingdom of
Chosroës and Cæsar." Thereupon she opened the dress and the whole
palace was illuminated by its brightness, because of the beauty of its
fashion and the wealth of unions and jewels wherewith it was broidered,
and all who were present marvelled at it. The Princess examined it and,
judging it to be worth no less than a whole year's revenue of her
father's kingdom, said to the old woman, "O my nurse, cometh this dress
from him or from another?"[FN#269] Replied she, "From him;" and Hayat
al-Nufus asked, "Is this trader of our town or a stranger?" The old
woman answered, "He is a foreigner, O my lady, newly come hither; and
by Allah he hath servants and slaves; and he is fair of face,
symmetrical of form, well mannered, open-handed and open-hearted, never
saw I a goodlier than he, save thyself." The King's daughter rejoined,
"Indeed this is an extraordinary thing, that a dress like this, which
money cannot buy, should be in the hands of a merchant! What price did
he set on it, O my nurse?" Quoth she, "By Allah, he would set no price
on it, but gave me back the money thou sentest by me and swore that he
would take naught thereof, saying, ''Tis a gift from me to the King's
daughter; for it beseemeth none but her; and if she will not accept it,
I make thee a present of it.'" Cried the Princess, "By Allah, this is
indeed marvellous generosity and wondrous munificence! But I fear the
issue of his affair, lest haply[FN#270] he be brought to necessity. Why
didst thou not ask him, O my nurse, if he had any desire, that we might
fulfil it for him?" The nurse replied, "O my lady, I did ask him, and
he said to me, 'I have indeed a desire'; but he would not tell me what
it was. However, he gave me this letter and said, 'Carry it to the
Princess.'" So Hayat al-Nufus took the letter and opened and read it to
the end; whereupon she was sore chafed; and lost temper and changing
colour for anger she cried out to the old woman, saying, "Woe to thee,
O nurse! What is the name of this dog who durst write this language to
a King's daughter? What affinity is there between me and this hound
that he should address me thus? By Almighty Allah, Lord of the well
Zemzem and of the Hatim Wall,[FN#271] but that I fear the Omnipotent,
the Most High, I would send and bind the cur's hands behind him and
slit his nostrils, and shear off his nose and ears and after, by way of
example, crucify him on the gate of the bazar wherein is his booth!"
When the old woman heard these words, she waxed yellow; her
side-muscles[FN#272] quivered and her tongue clave to her mouth; but
she heartened her heart and said, "Softly, O my lady! What is there in
his letter to trouble thee thus? Is it aught but a memorial containing
his complaint to thee of poverty or oppression, from which he hopeth to
be relieved by thy favour?" Replied she, "No, by Allah, O my nurse,
'tis naught of this; but verses and shameful words! However, O my
nurse, this dog must be in one of three cases: either he is Jinn-mad,
and hath no wit, or he seeketh his own slaughter, or else he is
assisted to his wish of me by some one of exceeding puissance and a
mighty Sultan. Or hath he heard that I am one of the baggages of the
city, who lie a night or two with whosoever seeketh them, that he
writeth me immodest verses to debauch my reason by talking of such
matters?" Rejoined the old woman, "By Allah, O my lady, thou sayst
sooth! But reck not thou of yonder ignorant hound, for thou art seated
in thy lofty, firm-builded and unapproachable palace, to which the very
birds cannot soar neither the wind pass over it, and as for him, he is
clean distraught. Wherefore do thou write him a letter and chide him
angrily and spare him no manner of reproof, but threaten him with
dreadful threats and menace him with death and say to him, 'Whence hast
thou knowledge of me, that thou durst write me, O dog of a merchant, O
thou who trudgest far and wide all thy days in wilds and wolds for the
sake of gaining a dirham or a dinar? By Allah, except thou awake from
thy sleep and put off thine intoxication, I will assuredly crucify thee
on the gate of the market-street wherein is thy shop!'" Quoth the
Princess, "I fear lest he presume, if I write to him"; and quoth the
nurse, "And pray what is he and what is his rank that he should presume
to us? Indeed, we write him but to the intent that his presumption may
be cut off and his fear magnified." And she ceased not craftily to
persuade her, till she called for ink-case and paper and wrote him
these couplets,

"O thou who claimest to be prey of love and ecstasy; * Thou,
     who for passion spendest nights in grief and saddest
Say, dost thou (haughty one!) desire enjoyment of the moon? *
     Did man e'er sue the moon for grace whate'er his lunacy?
I verily will counsel thee with rede the best to hear: * Cut
     short this course ere come thou nigh sore risk, nay
     death, to dree!
If thou to this request return, surely on thee shall fall *
     Sore punishment, for vile offence a grievous penalty.
Be reasonable then, be wise, hark back unto thy wits; *
     Behold, in very truth I speak with best advice to thee:
By Him who did all things that be create from nothingness; *
     Who dressed the face of heaven with stars in brightest
If in the like of this thy speech thou dare to sin again! *
     I'll surely have thee crucified upon a trunk of tree."

Then she rolled up the letter and gave it to the old woman who took it
and, repairing to Ardashir's shop, delivered it to him, —And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the old
woman took that letter from Hayat al-Nufus she fared forth till she
found the youth who was sitting in his shop and gave it to him, saying,
"Read thine answer and know that when she perused thy paper she was
wroth with exceeding wrath; but I soothed her and spake her fair, till
she consented to write thee a reply." He took the letter joyfully but,
when he had read it and understood its drift, he wept sore, whereat the
old woman's heart ached and she cried, "O my son, Allah never cause
thine eyes to weep nor thy heart to mourn! What can be more gracious
than that she should answer thy letter when thou hast done what thou
diddest?" He replied, "O my mother what shall I do for a subtle device?
Behold, she writeth to me, threatening me with death and crucifixion
and forbidding me from writing to her; and I, by Allah, see my death to
be better than my life; but I beg thee of thy grace[FN#273] to carry
her another letter from me." She said, "Write and I warrant I'll bring
thee an answer. By Allah, I will assuredly venture my life to win for
thee thy wish, though I die to pleasure thee!" He thanked her and
kissing her hands, wrote these verses,

"Do you threaten me wi' death for my loving you so well? *
     When Death to me were rest and all dying is by Fate?
And man's death is but a boon, when so longsome to him grows *
     His life, and rejected he lives in lonest state:
Then visit ye a lover who hath ne'er a soul to aid; * For on
     pious works of men Heaven's blessing shall await.
But an ye be resolved on this deed then up and on; * I'm in
     bonds to you, a bondsman confined within your gate:
What path have I whose patience without you is no more? * How
     is this, when a lover's heart in stress of love is
O my lady show me ruth, who by passion am misused; * For all
     who love the noble stand for evermore excused."

He then folded the scroll and gave it to the old woman, together with
two purses of two hundred dinars, which she would have refused, but he
conjured her by oath to accept of them. So she took them both and said,
"Needs must I bring thee to thy desire, despite the noses of thy foes."
Then she repaired to the palace and gave the letter to Hayat al-Nufus
who said, "What is this, O my nurse? Here are we in a correspondence
and thou coming and going! Indeed, I fear lest the matter get wind and
we be disgraced." Rejoined the old woman, "How so, O my lady? Who dare
speak such word?" So she took the letter and after reading and
understanding it she smote hand on hand, saying "Verily, this is a
calamity which is fallen upon us, and I know not whence this young man
came to us!" Quoth the old woman, "O my lady, Allah upon thee, write
him another letter; but be rough with him this time and say to him, 'An
thou write me another word after this, I will have thy head struck
off.'" Quoth the Princess, "O my nurse, I am assured that the matter
will not end on such wise; 'twere better to break off this exchange of
letters; and, except the puppy take warning by my previous threats, I
will strike off his head." The old woman said, "Then write him a letter
and give him to know this condition." So Hayat al-Nufus called for
pen-case and paper and wrote these couplets,

'Ho, thou heedless of Time and his sore despight! * Ho, thou
     heart whom hopes of my favours excite!
Think O pride-full! would'st win for thyself the skies? *
     Would'st attain to the moon shining clear and bright?
I will burn thee with fire that shall ne'er be quenched, * Or
     will slay thee with scymitar's sharpest bite!
Leave it, friend, and 'scape the tormenting pains, * Such as
     turn hair-partings[FN#274] from black to white.
Take my warning and fly from the road of love; * Draw thee
     back from a course nor seemly nor right!"

Then she folded the scroll and gave it to the old woman, who was
puzzled and perplexed by the matter. She carried it to Ardashir, and
the Prince read the letter and bowed his head to the earth, making as
if he wrote with his finger and speaking not a word. Quoth the old
woman, "How is it I see thee silent stay and not say thy say?"; and
quoth he, "O my mother, what shall I say, seeing that she doth but
threaten me and redoubleth in hard-heartedness and aversion?" Rejoined
the nurse, "Write her a letter of what thou wilt: I will protect thee;
nor let thy heart be cast down, for needs must I bring you twain
together." He thanked her for her kindness and kissing her hand, wrote
these couplets,

"A heart, by Allah! never soft to lover-wight, * Who sighs for
     union only with his friends, his sprite!
Who with tear-ulcered eyelids evermore must bide, * When
     falleth upon earth first darkness of the night:
Be just, be gen'rous, lend thy ruth and deign give alms * To
     love-molested lover, parted, forced to flight!
He spends the length of longsome night without a doze; *
     Fire-brent and drent in tear-flood flowing infinite:
Ah; cut not off the longing of my fondest heart * Now
     disappointed, wasted, flutt'ring for its blight."

Then he folded the scroll and gave it to the old woman, together with
three hundred dinars, saying, "This is for the washing of thy hands."
She thanked him and kissed his hands, after which she returned to the
palace and gave the letter to the Princess, who took it and read it and
throwing it from her fingers, sprang to her feet. Then she walked, shod
as she was with pattens of gold, set with pearls and jewels, till she
came to her sire's palace, whilst the vein of anger started out between
her eyes, and none dared ask her of her case. When she reached the
palace, she enquired for the King, and the slave-girls and concubines
replied to her, "O my lady, he is gone forth a-hunting and sporting."
So she returned, as she were a rending lioness, and bespake none for
the space of three hours, when her brow cleared and her wrath cooled.
As soon as the old woman saw that her irk and anger were past, she went
up to her and, kissing ground between her hands, asked her, "O my lady,
whither went those noble steps?" The Princess answered, "To the palace
of the King my sire." "And could no one do thine errand?" enquired the
nurse. Replied the Princess, "No, for I went to acquaint him of that
which hath befallen me with yonder cur of a merchant, so he might lay
hands on him and on all the merchants of his bazar and crucify them
over their shops nor suffer a single foreign merchant to tarry in our
town." Quoth the old woman, "And was this thine only reason, O my lady,
for going to thy sire?"; and quoth Hayat al-Nufus, "Yes, but I found
him absent a-hunting and sporting and now I await his return." Cried
the old nurse, "I take refuge with Allah, the All-hearing, the
All-knowing! Praised be He! O my lady, thou art the most sensible of
women and how couldst thou think of telling the King these fond words,
which it behoveth none to publish?" Asked the Princess, "And why so?"
and the nurse answered, "Suppose thou had found the King in his palace
and told him all this tale and he had sent after the merchants and
commanded to hang them over their shops, the folk would have seen them
hanging and asked the reason and it would have been answered them,
'They sought to seduce the King's daughter.'" —And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the old
woman said to the Princess, "Suppose thou had told this to the King and
he had ordered the merchants to be hanged, would not folk have seen
them and have asked the cause of the execution when the answer would
have been, 'They sought to seduce the King's daughter?' Then would they
have dispread divers reports concerning thee, some saying, 'She abode
with them ten days, away from her palace, till they had taken their
fill of her'; and other some in otherguise: for woman's honour, O my
lady, is like ourded milk, the least dust fouleth it; and like glass,
which, if it be cracked, may not be mended. So beware of telling thy
sire or any other of this matter, lest thy fair fame be smirched, O
mistress mine, for 'twill never profit thee to tell folk aught; no,
never! Weigh what I say with thy keen wit, and if thou find it not
just, do whatso thou wilt." The Princess pondered her words, and seeing
them to be altogether profitable and right, said, "Thou speaketh sooth,
O my nurse; but anger had blinded my judgment." Quoth the old woman,
"Thy resolve to tell no one is pleasing to the Almighty; but something
remaineth to be done: we must not let the shamelessness of yonder vile
dog of a merchant pass without notice. Write him a letter and say to
him 'O vilest of traders, but that I found the King my father absent, I
had straightway commanded to hang thee and all thy neighbours. But thou
shalt gain nothing by this; for I swear to thee, by Allah the Most
High, that an thou return to the like of this talk, I will blot out the
trace of thee from the face of earth!' And deal thou roughly with him
in words, so shalt thou discourage him in this attempt and arouse him
from his heedlessness." "And will these words cause him to abstain from
his offending?" asked the Princess; and the old woman answered, "How
should he not abstain? Besides, I will talk with him and tell him what
hath passed." So the Princess called for ink-case and paper and wrote
these couplets,

"To win our favours still thy hopes are bent;    * And still
     to win thy will art confident!
Naught save his pride-full aim shall slay a man; * And he by
     us shall die of his intent
 Thou art no lord of might, no chief of men,     * Nabob or
     Prince or Soldan Heaven-sent;
And were this deed of one who is our peer,       * He had
     returned with hair for fear white-sprent:
Yet will I deign once more excuse thy sin        * So from
     this time thou prove thee penitent."

Then she gave the missive to the old woman, saying, "O my nurse, do
thou admonish this puppy lest I be forced to cut off his head and sin
on his account." Replied the old woman, "By Allah, O my lady, I will
not leave him a side to turn on!" Then she returned to the youth and,
when salams had been exchanged, she gave him the letter. He read it and
shook his head, saying, "Verily, we are Allah's and unto him shall we
return!" adding, "O my mother, what shall I do? My fortitude faileth me
and my patience palleth upon me!" She replied, "O my son, be long-
suffering: peradventure, after this Allah shall bring somewhat to pass.
Write that which is in thy mind and I will fetch thee an answer, and be
of good cheer and keep thine eyes cool and clear; for needs must I
bring about union between thee and her,— Inshallah!" He blessed her and
wrote to the Princess a note containing these couplets,

"Since none will lend my love a helping hand, * And I by
     passion's bale in death low-lain,
I bear a flaming fire within my heart * By day and night nor
     place of rest attain,
How cease to hope in thee, my wishes' term? * Or with my
     longings to be glad and fain?
The Lord of highmost Heaven to grant my prayer * Pray I, whom
     love of lady fair hath slain;
And as I'm clean o'erthrown by love and fear, * To grant me
     speedy union deign, oh deign!"

Then he folded the scroll and gave it to the old woman, bringing out at
the same time a purse of four hundred dinars. She took the whole and
returning to the palace sought the Princess to whom she gave the
letter; but the King's daughter refused to take it and cried, "What is
this?" Replied the old woman, "O my lady, this is only the answer to
the letter thou sentest to that merchant dog." Quoth Hayat al-Nufus,
"Didst thou forbid him as I told thee?"; and quoth she, "Yes, and this
is his reply." So the Princess took the letter and read it to the end;
then she turned to the old woman and exclaimed, "Where is the result of
thy promise?" "O my lady, saith he not in his letter that he repenteth
and will not again offend, excusing himself for the past?" "Not so, by
Allah!: on the contrary, he increaseth." "O my lady, write him a letter
and thou shalt presently see what I will do with him." "There needeth
nor letter nor answer." "I must have a letter that I may rebuke him
roughly and cut off his hopes." "Thou canst do that without a letter."
"I cannot do it without the letter." So Hayat al-Nufus called for
pen-case and paper and wrote these verses,

"Long have I chid thee but my chiding hindereth thee not * How
     often would my verse with writ o' hand ensnare thee, ah!
Then keep thy passion hidden deep and ever unrevealed, * And
     if thou dare gainsay me Earth shall no more bear thee,
And if, despite my warning, thou dost to such words return, *
     Death's Messenger[FN#275] shall go his rounds and dead
     declare thee, ah!
Soon shall the wold's fierce chilling blast o'erblow that
     corse o' thine; * And birds o' the wild with ravening
     bills and beaks shall tear thee, ah!
Return to righteous course; perchance that same will profit
     thee; * If bent on wilful aims and lewd I fain forswear
     thee, ah!"

When she had made an end of her writing this, she cast the writ from
her hand in wrath, and the old woman picked it up and went with it to
Ardashir. When he read it to the last he knew that she had not softened
to him, but only redoubled in rage against him and that he would never
win to meet her, so he bethought himself to write her an answer
invoking Allah's help against her. Thereupon he indited these couplets,

"O Lord, by the Five Shaykhs, I pray deliver me * From love,
     which gars me bear such grief and misery.
Thou knowest what I bear for passion's fiery flame; * What
     stress of sickness for that merciless maid I dree.
She hath no pity on the pangs to me decreed; * How long on
     weakly wight shall last her tyranny?
I am distraught for her with passing agonies * And find no
     friend, O folk! to hear my plaint and plea.
How long, when Night hath drooped her pinions o'er the world,
     * Shall I lament in public as in privacy?
For love of you I cannot find forgetfulness; * And how forget
     when Patience taketh wings to flee?
O thou wild parting-bird[FN#276] say is she safe and sure *
     From shift and change of time and the world's cruelty?"

Then he folded the scroll and gave it to the old woman, adding a purse
of five hundred dinars; and she took it and carried it to the Princess,
who read it to the end and learned its purport. Then, casting it from
her hand, she cried, "Tell me O wicked old woman, the cause of all that
hath befallen me from thee and from thy cunning and thine advocacy of
him, so that thou hast made me write letter after letter and thou
ceasest not to carry messages, going and coming between us twain, till
thou hast brought about a correspondence and a connection. Thou leavest
not to say, 'I will ensure thee against his mischief and cut off from
thee his speech'; but thou speakest not thus save only to the intent
that I may continue to write thee letters and thou to fetch and carry
between us, evening and morning, till thou ruin my repute. Woe to thee!
Ho, eunuchs, seize her!" Then Hayat al-Nufus commanded them to beat
her, and they lashed her till her whole body flowed with blood and she
fainted away, whereupon the King's daughter caused her slave-women to
drag her forth by the feet and cast her without the palace and bade one
of them stand by her head till she recovered, and say to her, "The
Princess hath sworn an oath that thou shalt never return to and
re-enter this palace; and she hath commanded to slay thee without mercy
an thou dare return hither." So, when she came to herself, the damsel
told her what the King's daughter said and she answered, "Hearkening
and obedience." Presently the slave-girls fetched a basket and a porter
whom they caused carry her to her own house; and they sent after her a
physician, bidding him tend her assiduously till she recovered. He did
what he was told to do and as soon as she was whole she mounted and
rode to the shop of Ardashir who was concerned with sore concern for
her absence and was longing for news of her. As soon as he saw her, he
sprang up and coming to meet her, saluted her; then he noticed that she
was weak and ailing; so he questioned her of her case and she told him
all that had befallen her from her nursling. When he heard this, he
found it grievous and smote hand upon hand, saying, "By Allah, O my
mother, this that hath betided thee straiteneth my heart! But, what, O
my mother, is the reason of the Princess's hatred to men?" Replied the
old woman, "Thou must know O my son, that she hath a beautiful garden,
than which there is naught goodlier on earth's face and it chanced that
she lay there one night. In the joyance of sleep, she dreamt a dream
and 'twas this, that she went down into the garden, where she saw a
fowler set up his net and strew corn thereabout, after which he
withdrew and sat down afar off to await what game should fall into it.
Ere an hour had passed the birds flocked to pick up the corn and a male
pigeon[FN#277] fell into the net and struggled in it, whereat all the
others took fright and fled from him. His mate was amongst them, but
she returned to him after the shortest delay; and, coming up to the
net, sought out the mesh wherein his foot was entangled and ceased not
to peck at it with her bill, till she severed it and released her
husband, with whom she flew away. All this while, the fowler sat
dozing, and when he awoke, he looked at the net and found it spoilt. So
he mended it and strewed fresh grain, then withdrew to a distance and
sat down to watch it again. The birds soon returned and began to pick
up the corn, and among the rest the pair of pigeons. Presently, the
she-pigeon fell into the net and struggled to get free; whereupon all
the other birds flew away, and her mate, whom she had saved, fled with
the rest and did not return to her. Meantime, sleep had again overcome
the fowler; and, when he awoke after long slumbering, he saw the
she-pigeon caught in the net; so he went up to her and freeing her feet
from the meshes, cut her throat. The Princess startled by the dream
awoke troubled, and said, 'Thus do men with women, for women have pity
on men and throw away their lives for them, when they are in
difficulties; but if the Lord decree against a woman and she fall into
calamity, her mate deserteth her and rescueth her not, and wasted is
that which she did with him of kindness. Allah curse her who putteth
her trust in men, for they ill requite the fair offices which women do
them!' And from that day she conceived an hatred to men." Said the
King's son, "O my mother, doth she never go out into the highways?";
and the old woman replied, "Nay, O my son; but I will tell thee
somewhat wherein, Allah willing, there shall be profit for thee. She
hath a garden which is of the goodliest pleasaunces of the age; and
every year, at the time of the ripening of the fruits, she goeth
thither and taketh her pleasure therein only one day, nor layeth the
night but in her pavilion. She entereth the garden by the private
wicket of the palace which leadeth thereto; and thou must know that it
wanteth now but a month to the time of her going forth. So take my
advice and hie thee this very day to the keeper of that garden and make
acquaintance with him and gain his good graces, for he admitteth not
one of Allah's creatures into the garth, because of its communication
with the Princess's palace. I will let thee know two days beforehand of
the day fixed for her coming forth, when do thou repair to the garden,
as of thy wont, and make shift to night there. When the King's daughter
cometh be thou hidden in some place or other";—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the old woman
charged the King's son, saying, "I will let thee know two days
beforehand of the King's daughter going down to the garden: do thou
hide thee in some place or other; and, when thou espiest her, come
forth and show thyself to her. When she seeth thee, she will fall in
love with thee; for thou art fair to look upon and love covereth all
things. So keep thine eyes cool and clear[FN#278] and be of good cheer,
O my son, for needs must I bring about union between thee and her." The
young Prince kissed her hand and thanked her and gave her three pieces
of Alexandrian silk and three of satin of various colours, and with
each piece, linen for shifts and stuff for trousers and a kerchief for
the turband and fine white cotton cloth of Ba'albak for the linings, so
as to make her six complete suits, each handsomer than its sister.
Moreover, he gave her a purse containing six hundred gold pieces and
said to her, "This is for the tailoring." She took the whole and said
to him, "O my son, art thou not pleased to acquaint me with thine
abiding-place and I also will show thee the way to my lodging?" "Yes,"
answered he and sent a Mameluke with her to note her home and show her
his own house. Then he rose and bidding his slaves shut the shop, went
back to the Wazir, to whom he related all that had passed between him
and the old woman, from first to last. Quoth the Minister, "O my son,
should the Princess Hayat al-Nufus come out and look upon thee and thou
find no favour with her what wilt thou do?" Quoth Ardashir, "There will
be nothing left but to pass from words to deeds and risk my life with
her; for I will snatch her up from amongst her attendants and set her
behind me on a swift horse and make for the wildest of the wold. If I
escape, I shall have won my wish and if I perish, I shall be at rest
from this hateful life." Rejoined the Minister, "O my son, dost thou
think to do this thing and live? How shall we make our escape, seeing
that our country is far distant, and how wilt thou deal thus with a
King of the Kings of the Age, who hath under his hand an hundred
thousand horse, nor can we be sure but that he will despatch some of
his troops to cut off our way? Verily, there is no good in this project
which no wise man would attempt." Asked Ardashir, "And how then shall
we do, O Wazir of good counsel? For unless I win her I am a dead man
without a chance." The Minister answered, "Wait till to-morrow when we
will visit this garden and note its condition and see what betideth us
with the care-taker." So when the morning morrowed they took a thousand
dinars in a poke and, repairing to the garden, found it compassed about
with high walls and strong, rich in trees and rill-full leas and goodly
fruiteries. And indeed its flowers breathed perfume and its birds
warbled amid the bloom as it were a garden of the gardens of Paradise.
Within the door sat a Shaykh, an old man on a stone bench and they
saluted him. When he saw them and noted the fairness of their favour,
he rose to his feet after returning their salute, and said, "O my
lords, perchance ye have a wish which we may have the honour of
satisfying?" Replied the Wazir, "Know, O elder, that we are strangers
and the heat hath overcome us: our lodging is afar off at the other end
of the city; so we desire of thy courtesy that thou take these two
dinars and buy us somewhat of provaunt and open us meanwhile the door
of this flower-garden and seat us in some shaded place, where there is
cold water, that we may cool ourselves there, against thy return with
the provision, when we will eat, and thou with us, and then, rested and
refreshed, we shall wend our ways." So saying, he pulled out of his
pouch a couple of dinars and put them into the keeper's hand. Now this
care-taker was a man aged three-score and ten, who had never in all his
life possessed so much money: so, when he saw the two dinars in his
hand, he was like to fly for joy and rising forthwith opened the garden
gate to the Prince and the Wazir, and made them enter and sit down
under a wide-spreading, fruit-laden, shade-affording tree, saying, "Sit
ye here and go no further into the garden, for it hath a privy door
communicating with the palace of the Princess Hayat al-Nufus." They
replied, "We will not stir hence." Whereupon he went out to buy what
they had ordered and returned after awhile, with a porter bearing on
his head a roasted lamb and bread. They ate and drank together and
talked awhile, till, presently, the Wazir, looking about him in all
corners right and left, caught sight of a lofty pavilion at the farther
end of the garden; but it was old and the plaster was peeled from its
walls and its buttresses were broken down. So he said to the Gardener,
"O Shaykh, is this garden thine own or dost thou hire it?"; and he
replied, "I am neither owner nor tenant of the garden, only its
care-taker." Asked the Minister, "And what is thy wage?" whereto the
old man answered, "A dinar a month," and quoth the Wazir, "Verily they
wrong thee, especially an thou have a family." Quoth the elder, "By
Allah, O my lord, I have eight children and I"— The Wazir broke in,
"There is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious,
the Great! Thou makest me bear thy grief my poor fellow! What wouldst
thou say of him who should do thee a good turn, on account of this
family of thine?" Replied the old man, "O my lord, whatsoever good thou
dost shall be garnered up for thee with God the Most High!" Thereupon
said the Wazir, "O Shaykh, thou knowest this garden of thine to be a
goodly place; but the pavilion yonder is old and ruinous. Now I mean to
repair it and stucco it anew and paint it handsomely, so that it will
be the finest thing in the garth; and when the owner comes and finds
the pavilion restored and beautified, he will not fail to question thee
concerning it. Then do thou say, 'O my lord, at great expense I set it
in repair, for that I saw it in ruins and none could make use of it nor
could anyone sit therein.' If he says, 'Whence hadst thou the money for
this?' reply, 'I spent of my own money upon the stucco, thereby
thinking to whiten my face with thee and hoping for thy bounties.' And
needs must he recompense thee fairly over the extent of thine expenses.
To-morrow I will bring builders and plasterers and painters to repair
this pavilion and will give thee what I promised thee." Then he pulled
out of his poke a purse of five hundred dinars and gave it to the
Gardener, saying, "Take these gold pieces and expend them upon thy
family and let them pray for me and for this my son." Thereupon the
Prince asked the Wazir, "What is the meaning of all this?" and he
answered, "Thou shalt presently see the issue thereof."—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Wazir
gave five hundred ducats to the old Gardener, saying, "Take these gold
pieces and expend them upon thy family and let them pray for this my
son," the old man looked at the gold and his wits fled; so he fell down
at the Wazir's feet, kissing them and invoking blessings on him and his
son; and when they went away, he said to them, "I shall expect you
to-morrow: for by Allah Almighty, there must be no parting between us,
night or day." Next morning the Wazir went to the Prince's shop and
sent for the syndic of the builders; then he carried him and his men to
the garth, where the Gardener rejoiced in their sight. He gave them the
price of rations[FN#279] and what was needful to the work- men for the
restoration of the pavilion, and they repaired it and stucco'd it and
decorated it. Then said the Minister to the painters, "Harkye, my
masters, listen to my words and apprehend my wish and my aim. Know that
I have a garden like this, where I was sleeping one night among the
nights and saw in a dream a fowler set up nets and sprinkle corn
thereabout. The birds flocked to pick up the grain, and a cock-bird
fell into the net, whereupon the others took fright and flew away, and
amongst the rest his mate; but, after awhile, she returned alone and
picked at the mesh that held his feet, till she set him free and they
flew away together. Now the fowler had fallen asleep and, when he
awoke, he found the net empty; so he mended it and strewing fresh grain
sat down afar off, waiting for game to fall into that snare. Presently
the birds assembled again to pick up the grains, and amongst the rest
the two pigeons. By-and-by, the hen-bird fell into the net, when all
the other birds took fright at her and flew away, and her husband flew
with them and did not return; whereupon the fowler came up and taking
the quarry, cut her throat. Now, when her mate flew away with the
others, a bird of raven seized him and slew him and ate his flesh and
drank his blood, and I would have you pourtray me the presentment of
this my dream, even as I have related it to you, in the liveliest
colours, laying the fair scene in this rare garden, with its walls and
trees and rills, and dwell especially on the fowler and the falcon. If
ye do this I have set forth to you and the work please me, I will give
you what shall gladden your hearts, over and above your wage." The
painters, hearing these words, applied themselves with all diligence to
do what he required of them and wrought it out in masterly style; and
when they had made an end of the work, they showed it to the Wazir who,
seeing his so-called dream set forth as it was[FN#280] was pleased and
thanked them and rewarded them munificently. Presently, the Prince came
in, according to his custom, and entered the pavilion, unweeting what
the Wazir had done. So when he saw the portraiture of the fowler and
the birds and the net and beheld the male pigeon in the clutches of the
hawk, which had slain him and was drinking his blood and eating his
flesh, his understanding was confounded and he returned to the Minister
and said, "O Wazir of good counsel, I have seen this day a marvel
which, were it graven with needle-gravers on the eye-corners would be a
warner to whoso will be warned?" Asked the Minister, "And what is that,
O my lord?"; and the Prince answered, "Did I not tell thee of the dream
the Princess had and how it was the cause of her hatred for men?"
"Yes," replied the Wazir; and Ardashir rejoined, "By Allah, O Minister,
I have seen the whole dream pourtrayed in painting, as I had eyed it
with mine own eyes; but I found therein a circumstance which was hidden
from the Princess, so that she saw it not, and 'tis upon this that I
rely for the winning of my wish." Quoth the Wazir, "And what is that, O
my son?"; and quoth the Prince, "I saw that, when the male bird flew
away; and, leaving his mate entangled in the net, failed to return and
save her, a falcon pounced on him and slaying him, ate his flesh and
drank his blood. Would to Heaven the Princess had seen the whole of the
dream and had beheld the cause of his failure to return and rescue
her!" Replied the Wazir, "By Allah, O auspicious King, this is indeed a
rare thing and a wonderful!" And the King's son ceased not to marvel at
the picture and lament that the King's daughter had not beheld the
dream to its end, saying in himself, "Would she had seen it to the last
or might see the whole over again, though but in the imbroglio of
sleep!" Then quoth the Wazir to him, "Thou saidst to me, 'Why wilt thou
repair the pavilion?'; and I replied, 'Thou shalt presently see the
issue thereof.' And behold, now its issue thou seest; for it was I did
this deed and bade the painters pourtray the Princess's dream thus and
paint the male bird in the pounces of the falcon which eateth his flesh
and drinketh his blood; so that when she cometh to the pavilion, she
will behold her dream depicted and see how the cock-pigeon was slain
and excuse him and turn from her hate for men." When the Prince heard
the Wazir's words, he kissed his hands and thanked him, saying,
"Verily, the like of thee is fit to be Minister to the most mighty
King, and, by Allah, an I win my wish and return to my sire, rejoicing,
I will assuredly acquaint him with this, that he may redouble in
honouring thee and advance thee in dignity and hearken to thine every
word." So the Wazir kissed his hand and they both went to the old
Gardener and said, "Look at yonder pavilion and see how fine it is!"
And he replied, "This is all of your happy thought." Then said they, "O
elder, when the owners of the place question thee concerning the
restoration of the pavilion, say thou, ''Twas I did it of my own
monies'; to the intent that there may betide thee fair favour and good
fortune." He said, "I hear and I obey"; and the Prince continued to pay
him frequent visits. Such was the case with the Prince and the Wazir;
but as regards Hayat al-Nufus, when she ceased to receive the Prince's
letters and messages and when the old woman was absent from her, she
rejoiced with joy exceeding and concluded that the young man had
returned to his own country. One day, there came to her a covered tray
from her father; so she uncovered it and finding therein fine fruits,
asked her waiting-women, "Is the season of these fruits come?" Answered
they, "Yes." Thereupon she cried, "Would we might make ready to take
our pleasure in the flower-garden!"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Princess,
after receiving the fruit from her sire, asked, "Is the season of these
fruits set in?"; and they answered, "Yes!" Thereupon she cried, "Would
we might make ready to take our pleasure in the flower-garden!" "O my
lady," they replied, "thou sayest well, and by Allah, we also long for
the garden!" So she enquired, "How shall we do, seeing that every year
it is none save my nurse who taketh us to walk in the garden and who
pointeth out to us the various trees and plants; and I have beaten her
and forbidden her from me? Indeed, I repent me of what was done by me
to her, for that, in any case, she is my nurse and hath over me the
right of fosterage. But there is no Majesty and there is no Might save
in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!" When her handmaids heard this, they
all sprang up; and, kissing the ground between her hands, exclaimed,
"Allah upon thee, O my lady, do thou pardon her and bid her to the
presence!"; and quoth she, "By Allah, I am resolved upon this; but
which of you will go to her, for I have prepared her a splendid robe of
honour?" Hereupon two damsels came forward, by name Bulbul and Siwád
al-'Ayn, who were comely and graceful and the principals among the
Princess's women, and her favourites. And they said, "We will go to
her, O King's daughter!"; and she said, "Do what seemeth good to you."
So they went to the house of the nurse and knocked at the door and
entered; and she, recognising the twain, received them with open arms
and welcomed them. When they had sat awhile with her, they said to her,
"O nurse, the Princess pardoneth thee and desireth to take thee back
into favour." She replied, "This may never be, though I drink the cup
of ruin! Hast thou forgotten how she put me to shame before those who
love me and those who hate me, when my clothes were dyed with my blood
and I well nigh died for stress of beating, and after this they dragged
me forth by the feet, like a dead dog, and cast me without the door? So
by Allah, I will never return to her nor fill my eyes with her sight!"
Quoth the two girls, "Disappoint not our pains in coming to thee nor
send us away unsuccessful. Where is thy courtesy uswards? Think but who
it is that cometh in to visit thee: canst thou wish for any higher of
standing than we with the King's daughter?" She replied, "I take refuge
with Allah: well I wot that my station is less than yours; were it not
that the Princess's favour exalted me above all her women, so that,
were I wroth with the greatest of them, she had died in her skin of
fright." They rejoined, "All is as it was and naught is in anywise
changed. Indeed, 'tis better than before, for the Princess humbleth
herself to thee and seeketh a reconciliation without intermediary."
Said the old woman, "By Allah, were it not for your presence and
intercession with me, I had never returned to her; no, not though she
had commanded to slay me!" They thanked her for this and she rose and
dressing herself accompanied them to the palace. Now when the King's
daughter saw her, she sprang to her feet in honour, and the old woman
said, "Allah! Allah! O King's daughter, say me, whose was the fault,
mine or thine?" Hayat al-Nufus replied, "The fault was mine, and 'tis
thine to pardon and forgive. By Allah, O my nurse, thy rank is high
with me and thou hast over me the right of fosterage; but thou knowest
that Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) hath allotted to His creatures
four things, disposition, life, daily bread and death; nor is it in
man's power to avert that which is decreed. Verily, I was beside myself
and could not recover my senses; but, O my nurse, I repent of what deed
I did." With this, the crone's anger ceased from her and she rose and
kissed the ground before the Princess, who called for a costly robe of
honour and threw it over her, whereat she rejoiced with exceeding joy
in the presence of the Princess's slaves and women. When all ended thus
happily, Hayat al-Nufus said to the old woman, "O my nurse, how go the
fruits and growths of our garth?"; and she replied, "O my lady, I see
excellent fruits in the town; but I will enquire of this matter and
return thee an answer this very day." Then she withdrew, honoured with
all honour and betook herself to Ardashir, who received her with open
arms and embraced her and rejoiced in her coming, for that he had
expected her long and longingly. She told him all that had passed
between herself and the Princess and how her mistress was minded to go
down into the garden on such a day.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the old
woman betook herself to the Prince and told him all that had passed
between herself and the Princess Hayat al-Nufus; and how her mistress
was minded to go down into the garden on such a day and said to him,
"Hast thou done as I bade thee with the Warder of the garden and hast
thou made him taste of thy bounties?" He replied, "Yes, and the oldster
is become my good friend: my way is his way and he would well I had
need of him." Then he told her all that had happened and of the
dream-paintings which the Wazir had caused to be limned in the
pavilion; especially of the fowler, the net and the falcon: whereat she
joyed with great joy and said, "Allah upon thee, do thou set thy
Minister midmost thy heart, for this that he hath done pointeth to the
keenness of his wit and he hath helped thee to the winning thy wish. So
rise forthright, O my son, and go to the Hammam-bath and don thy
daintiest dress, wherein may be our success. Then fare thou to the
Gardener and make shift to pass the night in the garden, for though he
should give the earth full of gold none may win to pass into it, whilst
the King's daughter is therein. When thou hast entered, hide thee where
no eye may espy thee and keep concealed till thou hear me cry, 'O Thou
whose boons are hidden, save us from that we fear!' Then come forth
from thine ambush and walk among the trees and show thy beauty and
loveliness which put the moons to shame, to the intent that Princess
Hayat al-Nufus may see thee and that her heart and soul may be filled
with love of thee; so shalt thou attain to thy wish and thy grief be
gone." "To hear is to obey," replied the young Prince and gave her a
purse of a thousand dinars, which she took and went away. Thereupon
Ardashir fared straight for the bath and washed; after which he arrayed
himself in the richest of robes of the apparel of the Kings of the
Chosroës and girt his middle with a girdle wherein were conjoined all
manner precious stones and donned a turband inwoven with red gold and
purfled with pearls and gems. His cheeks shone rosy-red and his lips
were scarlet; his eyelids like the gazelle's wantoned; like a
wine-struck wight in his gait he swayed; beauty and loveliness garbed
him, and his shape shamed the bowing of the bough. Then he put in his
pocket a purse containing a thousand dinars and, repairing to the
flower-garden, knocked at the door. The Gardener opened to him and
rejoicing with great joy salamed to him in most worshipful fashion;
then, observing that his face was overcast, he asked him how he did.
The King's son answered, "Know, O elder, that I am dear to my father
and he never laid his hand on me till this day, when words arose
between us and he abused me and smote me on the face and struck me with
his staff and drave me away. Now I have no friend to turn to and I fear
the perfidy of Fortune, for thou knowest that the wrath of parents is
no light thing. Wherefore I come to thee, O uncle, seeing that to my
father thou art known, and I desire of thy favour that thou suffer me
abide in the garden till the end of the day, or pass the night there,
till Allah grant good understanding between myself and my sire." When
the old man heard these words he was concerned anent what had occurred
and said, "O my lord, dost thou give me leave to go to thy sire and be
the means of reconciliation between thee and him?" Replied Ardashir, "O
uncle, thou must know that my father is of impatient nature, and
irascible; so an thou proffer him reconciliation in his heat of temper
he will make thee no answer; but when a day or two shall have passed,
his heat will soften. Then go thou in to him and thereupon he will
relent." "Hearkening and obedience," quoth the Gardener; "but, O my
lord, do thou come with me to my house, where thou shalt night with my
children and my family and none shall reproach this to us." Quoth
Ardashir, "O uncle, I must be alone when I am angry."[FN#281] The old
man said, "It irketh me that thou shouldst lie solitary in the garden,
when I have a house." But Ardashir said, "O uncle, I have an aim in
this, that the trouble of my mind may be dispelled from me and I know
that in this lies the means of regaining his favour and softening his
heart to me." Rejoined the Gardener, "I will fetch thee a carpet to
sleep on and a coverlet wherewith to cover thee;" and the Prince said,
"There is no harm in that, O uncle." So the keeper rose and opened the
garden to him, and brought him the carpet and coverlet, knowing not
that the King's daughter was minded to visit the garth. On this wise
fared it with the Prince; but as regards the nurse, she returned to the
Princess and told her that the fruits were kindly ripe on the garden
trees; whereupon she said, "O my nurse, go down with me to-morrow into
the garden, that we may walk about in it and take our
pleasure,—Inshallah; and send meanwhile to the Gardener, to let him
know what we purpose." So she sent to the Gardener to say, "The
Princess will visit the parterre to-morrow, so leave neither
water-carriers nor tree-tenders therein, nor let one of Allah's
creatures enter the garth." When word came to him, he set his
water-ways and channels in order and, going to Ardashir, said to him,
"O my lord, the King's daughter is mistress of this garden; and I have
only to crave thy pardon, for the place is thy place and I live only in
thy favours, except that my tongue is under thy feet.[FN#282] I must
tell thee that the Princess Hayat al-Nufus hath a mind to visit it
to-morrow at the first of the day and hath bidden me leave none therein
who might look upon her. So I would have thee of thy favour go forth of
the garden this day, for the Queen will abide only in it till the time
of mid-afternoon prayer and after it shall be at thy service for
se'nnights and fortnights, months and years." Ardashir asked, "O elder,
haply we have caused thee some mishap?"; and the other answered, "By
Allah, O my lord, naught hath betided me from thee but honour!"
Rejoined the Prince, "An it be so, nothing but all good shall befal
thee through us; for I will hide in the garden and none shall espy me,
till the King's daughter hath gone back to her palace." Said the
Gardener, "O my lord, an she espy the shadow of a man in the garden or
any of Allah's male creatures she will strike off my head;"—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Gardener said to the Prince, "An the King's daughter espy the shadow of
a man in her garden, she will strike off my head;" the youth replied,
"Have no fear, I will on no wise let any see me. But doubtless to-day
thou lackest of spending-money for thy family." Then he put his hand to
his purse and pulled out five hundred ducats, which he gave to him
saying, "Take this gold and lay it out on thy family, that thy heart
may be at ease concerning them." When the Shaykh looked upon the gold,
his life seemed a light thing to him[FN#283] and he suffered the Prince
to tarry where he was, charging him straitly not to show himself in the
garden. Then he left him loitering about. Meanwhile, when the eunuchs
went in to the Princess at break of day, she bade open the private
wicket leading from the palace to the parterres and donned a royal
robe, embroidered with pearls and jewels and gems, over a shift of fine
silk purfled with rubies. Under the whole was that which tongue
refuseth to explain, whereat was confounded the brain and whose love
would embrave the craven's strain. On her head she set a crown of red
gold, inlaid with pearls and gems and she tripped in pattens of cloth
of gold, embroidered with fresh pearls[FN#284] and adorned with all
manner precious stones. Then she put her hand upon the old woman's
shoulder and commanded to go forth by the privy door; but the nurse
looked at the garden and, seeing it full of eunuchs and handmaids
walking about, eating the fruits and troubling the streams and taking
their ease of sport and pleasure in the water said to the Princess, "O
my lady, is this a garden or a madhouse?" Quoth the Princess, "What
meaneth thy speech, O nurse?"; and quoth the old woman, "Verily the
garden is full of slave-girls and eunuchs, eating of the fruits and
troubling the streams and scaring the birds and hindering us from
taking our ease and sporting and laughing and what not else; and thou
hast no need of them. Wert thou going forth of thy palace into the
highway, this would be fitting, as an honour and a ward to thee; but,
now, O my lady, thou goest forth of the wicket into the garden, where
none of Almighty Allah's creatures may look on thee." Rejoined the
Princess, "By Allah, O nurse mine, thou sayst sooth! But how shall we
do?"; and the old woman said, "Bid the eunuchs send them all away and
keep only two of the slave-girls, that we may make merry with them. So
she dismissed them all, with the exception of two of her handmaids who
were most in favour with her. But when the old woman saw that her heart
was light and that the season was pleasant to her, she said to her,
"Now we can enjoy ourselves aright: so up and let us take our pleasance
in the garden." The Princess put her hand upon her shoulder and went
out by the private door. The two waiting-women walked in front and she
followed them laughing at them and swaying gracefully to and fro in her
ample robes; whilst the nurse forewent her, showing her the trees and
feeding her with fruits; and so they fared on from place to place, till
they came to the pavilion, which when the King's daughter beheld and
saw that it had been restored, she asked the old woman, "O my nurse,
seest thou yonder pavilion? It hath been repaired and its walls
whitened." She answered, "By Allah, O my lady, I heard say that the
keeper of the garden had taken stuffs of a company of merchants and
sold them and bought bricks and lime and plaster and stones and so
forth with the price; so I asked him what he had done with all this,
and he said, 'I have repaired the pavilion which lay in ruins,'
presently adding, 'And when the merchants sought their due of me, I
said to them, 'Wait 'till the Princess visit the garden and see the
repairs and they satisfy her; then will I take of her what she is
pleased to bestow on me, and pay you what is your due.' Quoth I, 'What
moved thee to do this thing?'; and quoth he, 'I saw the pavilion in
ruins, the coigns thrown down and the stucco peeled from the walls, and
none had the grace to repair it; so I borrowed the coin on my own
account and restored the place; and I trust in the King's daughter to
deal with me as befitteth her dignity.' I said, 'The Princess is all
goodness and generosity and will no doubt requite thee.' And he did all
this but in hopes of thy bounty." Replied the Princess, "By Allah, he
hath dealt nobly in rebuilding it and hath done the deed of generous
men! Call me my purse-keeperess." The old woman accordingly fetched the
purse-keeperess, whom the Princess bade give the Gardener two thousand
dinars; whereupon the nurse sent to him, bidding him to the presence of
the King's daughter. But when the messenger said to him, "Obey the
Queen's order," the Gardener felt feeble and, trembling in every joint,
said in himself, "Doubtless, the Princess hath seen the young man, and
this day will be the most unlucky of days for me." So he went home and
told his wife and children what had happened and gave them his last
charges and farewelled them, while they wept for and with him. Then he
presented himself before the Princess, with a face the colour of
turmeric and ready to fall flat at full length. The old woman remarked
his plight and hastened to forestall him, saying "O Shaykh, kiss the
earth in thanksgiving to Almighty Allah and be constant in prayer to
Him for the Princess. I told her what thou didst in the matter of
repairing the ruined pavilion, and she rejoiceth in this and bestoweth
on thee two thousand dinars in requital of thy pains; so take them from
the purse-keeperess and kiss the earth before the King's daughter and
bless her and wend thy way." Hearing these words he took the gold and
kissed the ground before Hayat al-Nufus, calling down blessings on her.
Then he returned to his house, and his family rejoiced in him and
blessed him[FN#285] who had been the prime cause of this business.—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

When it was the Seven Hundred and Thirtieth Night,

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Care-taker took the two thousand ducats from the Princess and returned
to his house, all his family rejoiced in him and blessed him who had
been the prime cause of this business. Thus it fared with these; but as
regards the old woman, she said to the Princess, "O my lady, this is
indeed become a fine place! Never saw I a purer white than its
plastering nor properer than its painting! I wonder if he have also
repaired it within: else hath he made the outside white and left the
inside black. Come, let us enter and inspect." So they went in, the
nurse preceding, and found the interior painted and gilded in the
goodliest way. The Princess looked right and left, till she came to the
upper end of the estrade, when she fixed her eyes upon the wall and
gazed long and earnestly thereat; whereupon the old woman knew that her
glance had lighted on the presentment of her dream and took the two
waiting-women away with her, that they might not divert her mind. When
the King's daughter had made an end of examining the painting, she
turned to the old woman, wondering and beating hand on hand, and said
to her, "O my nurse, come, see a wondrous thing which were it graven
with needle-gravers on the eye corners would be a warner to whoso will
be warned." She replied, "And what is that, O my lady?"; when the
Princess rejoined, "Go, look at the upper end of the estrade, and tell
me what thou seest there." So she went up and considered the
dream-drawing: then she came down, wondering, and said, "By Allah, O my
lady, here is depicted the garden and the fowler and his net and the
birds and all thou sawest in thy dream; and verily, nothing but urgent
need withheld the male pigeon from returning to free his mate after he
had fled her, for I see him in the talons of a bird of raven which hath
slaughtered him and is drinking his blood and rending his flesh and
eating it; and this, O my lady, caused his tarrying to return and
rescue her from the net. But, O my mistress, the wonder is how thy
dream came to be thus depicted, for, wert thou minded to set it forth
in painture, thou hadst not availed to portray it. By Allah, this is a
marvel which should be recorded in histories! Surely, O my lady, the
angels appointed to attend upon the sons of Adam, knew that the
cock-pigeon was wronged of us, because we blamed him for deserting his
mate; so they embraced his cause and made manifest his excuse; and now
for the first time we see him in the hawk's pounces a dead bird." Quoth
the Princess, "O my nurse, verily, Fate and Fortune had course against
this bird, and we did him wrong." Quoth the nurse, "O my mistress, foes
shall meet before Allah the Most High: but, O my lady, verily, the
truth hath been made manifest and the male pigeon's excuse certified to
us; for had the hawk not seized him and drunk his blood and rent his
flesh he had not held aloof from his mate, but had returned to her, and
set her free from the net; but against death there is no recourse, nor,
O my lady, is there aught in the world more tenderly solicitous than
the male for the female, among all creatures which Almighty Allah hath
created. And especially 'tis thus with man; for he starveth himself to
feed his wife, strippeth himself to clothe her, angereth his family to
please her and disobeyeth and denieth his parents to endow her. She
knoweth his secrets and concealeth them and she cannot endure from him
a single hour.[FN#286] An he be absent from her one night, her eyes
sleep not, nor is there a dearer to her than he: she loveth him more
than her parents and they lie down to sleep in each other's arms, with
his hand under her neck and her hand under his neck, even as saith the

'I made my wrist her pillow and I lay with her in litter; *
     And I said to Night 'Be long!' while the full moon showed
Ah me, it was a night, Allah never made its like; * Whose
     first was sweetest sweet and whose last bitt'rest

Then he kisseth her and she kisseth him; and I have heard of a certain
King that, when his wife fell sick and died, he buried himself alive
with her, submitting himself to death, for the love of her and the
strait companionship which was between them. Moreover, a certain King
sickened and died, and when they were about to bury him, his wife said
to her people: 'Let me bury myself alive with him: else will I slay
myself and my blood shall be on your heads.' So, when they saw she
would not be turned from this thing, they left her, and she cast
herself into the grave with her dead husband, of the greatness of her
love and tenderness for him." And the old woman ceased not to ply the
Princess with anecdotes of conjugal love between men and women, till
there ceased that which was in her heart of hatred for the sex
masculine; and when she felt that she had succeeded in renewing in her
the natural inclination of woman to man, she said to her, "'Tis time to
go and walk in the garden." So they fared forth from the pavilion and
paced among the trees. Presently the Prince chanced to turn and his
eyes fell on Hayat al-Nufus; and when he saw the symmetry of her shape
and the rosiclearness of her cheeks and the blackness of her eyes and
her exceeding grace and her passing loveliness and her excelling beauty
and her prevailing elegance and her abounding perfection, his reason
was confounded and he could not take his eyes off her. Passion
annihilated his right judgment and love overpassed all limits in him;
his vitals were occupied with her service and his heart was aflame with
the fire of repine, so that he swooned away and fell to the ground.
When he came to himself, she had passed from his sight and was hidden
from him among the trees;—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Prince
Ardashir, who lay hid in the garden, saw the Princess and her nurse
walking amongst the trees, he swooned away for very love-longing. When
he came to himself Hayat al-Nufus had passed from his sight and was
hidden from him among the trees; so he sighed from his heart-core and
improvised these couplets,

"Whenas mine eyes behold her loveliness, * My heart is torn
     with love's own ecstasy.
I wake o'erthrown, castdown on face of earth * Nor can the
     Princess[FN#288] my sore torment see.
She turned and ravished this sad Love-thrall'd sprite; *
     Mercy, by Allah, ruth; nay, sympathy!
O Lord, afford me union, deign Thou soothe * My soul, ere
     grave-niche house this corse of me;
I'll kiss her ten times ten times, and times ten * For lover's
     wasted cheek the kisses be!"

The old woman ceased not to lead the Princess a-pleasuring about the
garden, till they reached the place where the Prince lay ambushed,
when, behold she said, "O Thou whose bounties are hidden, vouchsafe us
assurance from that we fear!" The King's son hearing the signal, left
his lurking-place and, surprised by the summons, walked among the
trees, swaying to and fro with a proud and graceful gait and a shape
that shamed the branches. His brow was crowned with pearly drops and
his cheeks red as the afterglow, extolled be Allah the Almighty in that
He hath created! When the King's daughter caught sight of him, she
gazed a long while on him and noticed his beauty and grace and
loveliness and his eyes that wantoned like the gazelle's, and his shape
that outvied the branches of the myrobalan; wherefore her wits were
confounded and her soul captivated and her heart transfixed with the
arrows of his glances. Then she said to the old woman, "O my nurse,
whence came yonder handsome youth?"; and the nurse asked, "Where is he,
O my lady?" "There he is," answered Hayat al-Nufus; "near hand, among
the trees." The old woman turned right and left, as if she knew not of
his presence, and cried, "And pray, who can have taught this youth the
way into this garden?" Quoth Hayat al-Nufus, "Who shall give us news of
the young man? Glory be to Him who created men! But say me, dost thou
know him, O my nurse?" Quoth the old woman, "O my lady, he is the young
merchant who wrote to thee by me." The Princess (and indeed she was
drowned in the sea of her desire and the fire of her passion and
love-longing) broke out, "O my nurse, how goodly is this youth! Indeed
he is fair of favour. Methinks, there is not on the face of earth a
goodlier than he!" Now when the old woman was assured that the love of
him had gotten possession of the Princess, she said to her, "Did I not
tell thee, O my lady, that he was a comely youth with a beaming
favour?" Replied Hayat al-Nufus, "O my nurse, King's daughters know not
the ways of the world nor the manners of those that be therein, for
that they company with none, neither give they nor take they. O my
nurse, how shall I do to bring about a meeting and present myself to
him, and what shall I say to him and what will he say to me?" Said the
old woman, "What device is left me? Indeed, we were confounded in this
matter by thy behaviour"; and the Princess said, "O my nurse, know thou
that if any ever died of passion, I shall do so, and behold, I look for
nothing but death on the spot by reason of the fire of my
love-longing." When the old woman heard her words and saw the transport
of her desire for him, she answered, "O my lady, now as for his coming
to thee, there is no way thereto; and indeed thou art excused from
going to him, because of thy tender age; but rise with me and follow
me. I will accost him: so shalt thou not be put to shame, and in the
twinkling of an eye affection shall ensue between you." The King's
daughter cried, "Go thou before me, for the decree of Allah may not be
rejected." Accordingly they went up to the place where Ardashir sat, as
he were the full moon at its fullest, and the old woman said to him,
"See O youth, who is present before thee! 'Tis the daughter of our King
of the age, Hayat al-Nufus: bethink thee of her rank and appreciate the
honour she doth thee in coming to thee and rise out of respect for her
and stand before her." The Prince sprang to his feet in an instant and
his eyes met her eyes, whereupon they both became as they were drunken
without wine. Then the love of him and desire redoubled upon the
Princess and she opened her arms and he his, and they embraced; but
love-longing and passion overcame them and they swooned away and fell
to the ground and lay a long while without sense. The old woman,
fearing scandalous exposure, carried them both into the pavilion, and,
sitting down at the door, said to the two waiting-women, "Seize the
occasion to take your pleasure in the garden, for the Princess
sleepeth." So they returned to their diversion. Presently the lovers
revived from their swoon and found themselves in the pavilion, whereat
quoth the Prince, "Allah upon thee, O Princess of fair ones, is this
vision or sleep-illusion?" Then the twain embraced and intoxicated
themselves without wine, complaining each to other of the anguish of
passion; and the Prince improvised these couplets,

"Sun riseth sheen from her brilliant brow, * And her cheek
     shows the rosiest afterglow:
And when both appear to the looker-on, * The skyline star
     ne'er for shame will show:
An the leven flash from those smiling lips, * Morn breaks and
     the rays dusk and gloom o'erthrow.
And when with her graceful shape she sways, * Droops leafiest
     Ban-tree[FN#289] for envy low:
Me her sight suffices; naught crave I more: * Lord of Men and
     Morn, be her guard from foe!
The full moon borrows a part of her charms; * The sun would
     rival but fails his lowe.
Whence could Sol aspire to that bending grace? * Whence should
     Luna see such wit and such mind-gifts know?
Who shall blame me for being all love to her, * 'Twixt accord
     and discord aye doomed to woe:
'Tis she won my heart with those forms that bend * What shall
     lover's heart from such charms defend?"

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

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Prince
had made an end of his verses, the Princess strained him to her bosom
and kissed him on the mouth and between the eyes; whereupon his soul
returned to him and he fell to complaining to her of that he had
endured for stress of love and tyranny of longing and excess of
transport and distraction and all he had suffered for the hardness of
her heart. Hearing those words she kissed his hands and feet and bared
her head,[FN#290] whereupon the gloom gathered and the full moons
dawned therein. Then said she to him, "O my beloved and term of all my
wishes, would the day of estrangement had never been and Allah grant it
may never return between us!" And they embraced and wept together,
whilst she recited these couplets,

"O who shamest the Moon and the sunny glow: * Thou whose
     slaught'ring tyranny lays me low;
With the sword of a look thou hast shorn my heart, * How
     escape thy sword-glance fatal of blow?
Thus eke are thine eyebrows a bow that shot * My bosom with
     shafts of fiercest lowe:
From thy cheeks' rich crop cometh Paradise; * How, then, shall
     my heart the rich crop forego?
Thy graceful shape is a blooming branch, * And shall pluck the
     fruits who shall bear that bough.
Perforce thou drawest me, robst my sleep; * In thy love I
     strip me and shameless show:[FN#291]
Allah lend thee the rays of most righteous light, * Draw the
     farthest near and a tryst bestow:
Then have ruth on the vitals thy love hath seared, * And the
     heart that flies to thy side the mo'e!"

And when she ended her recitation, passion overcame her and she was
distraught for love and wept copious tears, rain-like streaming down.
This burnt the Prince's heart and he in turn became troubled and
distracted for love of her. So he drew nearer to her and kissed her
hands and wept with sore weeping and they ceased not from
lover-reproaches and converse and versifying, until the call to
mid-afternoon prayer (nor was there aught between them other than
this), when they bethought them of parting and she said to him, "O
light of mine eyes and core of my heart, the time of severance has come
between us twain: when shall we meet again?" "By Allah," replied he
(and indeed her words shot him as with shafts), "to mention of parting
I am never fain!" Then she went forth of the pavilion, and he turned
and saw her sighing sighs would melt the rock and weeping shower-like
tears; whereupon he for love was sunken in the sea of desolation and
improvised these couplets,

"O my heart's desire! grows my misery * From the stress of
     love, and what cure for me?
By thy face, like dawn when it lights the dark, * And thy hair
     whose hue beareth night-tide's blee,
And thy form like the branch which in grace inclines * To
     Zephyr's[FN#292] breath blowing fain and free,
By the glance of thine eyes like the fawn's soft gaze, * When
     she views pursuer of high degree,
And thy waist down borne by the weight of hips, * These so
     heavy and that lacking gravity,
By the wine of thy lip-dew, the sweetest of drink, * Fresh
     water and musk in its purity,
O gazelle of the tribe, ease my soul of grief, * And grant me
     thy phantom in sleep to see!"

Now when she heard his verses in praise of her, she turned back to him
and embracing him, with a heart on fire for the anguish of severance,
fire which naught save kisses and embraces might quench, cried, "Sooth
the byword saith, Patience is for a lover and not the lack thereof.
There is no help for it but I contrive a means for our reunion." Then
she farewelled him and fared forth, knowing not where she set her feet,
for stress of her love; nor did she stay her steps till she found
herself in her own chamber. When she was gone, passion and love-longing
redoubled upon the young Prince and the delight of sleep was forbidden
him, and the Princess in her turn tasted not food and her patience
failed and she sickened for desire. As soon as dawned the day, she sent
for the nurse, who came and found her condition changed and she cried,
"Question me not of my case; for all I suffer is due to thy handiwork.
Where is the beloved of my heart?" "O my lady, when did he leave thee?
Hath he been absent from thee more than this night?" "Can I endure
absence from him an hour? Come, find some means to bring us together
speedily, for my soul is like to flee my body." "O my lady, have
patience till I contrive thee some subtle device, whereof none shall be
ware." "By the Great God, except thou bring him to me this very day, I
will tell the King that thou hast corrupted me, and he will cut off thy
head!" "I conjure thee, by Allah, have patience with me, for this is a
dangerous matter!" And the nurse humbled herself to her, till she
granted her three days' delay, saying, "O my nurse, the three days will
be three years to me; and if the fourth day pass and thou bring him
not, I will go about to slay thee." So the old woman left her and
returned to her lodging, where she abode till the morning of the fourth
day, when she summoned the tirewomen of the town and sought of them
fine dyes and rouge for the painting of a virgin girl and adorning; and
they brought her cosmetics of the best. Then she sent for the Prince
and, opening her chest, brought out a bundle containing a suit of
woman's apparel, worth five thousand dinars, and a head-kerchief
fringed with all manner gems. Then said she to him, "O my son, hast
thou a mind to foregather with Hayat al-Nufus?"; and he replied, "Yes."
So she took a pair of tweezers and pulled out the hairs of his face and
pencilled his eyes with Kohl.[FN#293] Then she stripped him and painted
him with Henna[FN#294] from his nails to his shoulders and from his
insteps to his thighs and tattooed[FN#295] him about the body, till he
was like red roses upon alabaster slabs. After a little, she washed him
and dried him and bringing out a shift and a pair of petticoat-trousers
made him put them on. Then she clad him in the royal suit aforesaid
and, binding the kerchief about his head, veiled him and taught him how
to walk, saying, "Advance thy left and draw back thy right." He did her
bidding and forewent her, as he were a Houri faring abroad from
Paradise. Then said she to him, "Fortify thy heart, for thou art going
to the King's palace, where there will without fail be guards and
eunuchs at the gate; and if thou be startled at them and show doubt or
dread, they will suspect thee and examine thee, and we shall both get
into grievous trouble and haply lose our lives: wherefore an thou feel
thyself unable to this, tell me." He answered, "In very sooth this
thing hath no terrors for me, so be of good cheer and keep thine eyes
cool and clear." Then she went out preceding him till the twain came to
the palace-gate, which was full of eunuchs. She turned and looked at
him, as much as to say, "Art thou troubled or no?" and finding him all
unchanged, went on. The chief eunuch glanced at the nurse and knew her
but, seeing a damsel following her, whose charms confounded the reason,
he said in his mind, "As for the old woman, she is the nurse; but as
for the girl who is with her there is none in our land resembleth her
in favour or approacheth her in fairness save the Princess Hayat
al-Nufus, who is secluded and never goeth out. Would I knew how she
came into the streets and would Heaven I wot whether or no 'twas by
leave of the King!" Then he rose to learn somewhat concerning her and
well nigh thirty castratos followed him; which when the old woman saw,
her reason fled for fear and she said, "Verily, we are Allah's and to
Him we shall return! Without recourse we are dead folk this time."—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the old
nurse saw the head of the eunuchry and his assistants making for her
she was in exceeding fear and cried, "There is no Majesty and there is
no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great! Verily we are God's
and unto him we shall return; without recourse we be dead folk this
time." When the head eunuch heard her speak thus, fear gat hold upon
him, by reason of that which he knew of the Princess's violence and
that her father was ruled by her, and he said to himself, "Belike the
King hath commanded the nurse to carry his daughter forth upon some
occasion of hers, whereof she would have none know; and if I oppose
her, she will be wroth with me and will say, 'This eunuch fellow
stopped me, that he might pry into my affairs.' So she will do her best
to kill me, and I have no call to meddle in this matter." So saying, he
turned back, and with him the thirty assistants who drove the people
from the door of the palace; whereupon the nurse entered and saluted
the eunuchs with her head, whilst all the thirty stood to do her honour
and returned her salam. She led in the Prince and he ceased not
following her from door to door, and the Protector protected them, so
that they passed all the guards, till they came to the seventh door: it
was that of the great pavilion, wherein was the King's throne, and it
communicated with the chambers of his women and the saloons of the
Harim, as well as with his daughter's pavilion. So the old woman halted
and said, "Here we are, O my son, and glory be to Him who hath brought
us thus far in safety! But, O my son, we cannot foregather with the
Princess except by night; for night enveileth the fearful." He replied,
"True, but what is to be done?" Quoth she, "Hide thee in this black
hole," showing him behind the door a dark and deep cistern, with a
cover thereto. So he entered the cistern, and she went away and left
him there till ended day, when she returned and carried him into the
palace, till they came to the door of Hayat al-Nufus's apartment. The
old woman knocked and a little maid came out and said, "Who is at the
door?" Said the nurse, "'Tis I," whereupon the maid returned and craved
permission of her lady, who said, "Open to her and let her come in with
any who may accompany her." So they entered and the nurse, casting a
glance around, perceived that the Princess had made ready the
sitting-chamber and ranged the lamps in row and lighted candles of wax
in chandeliers of gold and silver and spread the divans and estrades
with carpets and cushions. Moreover, she had set on trays of food and
fruits and confections and she had perfumed the place with musk and
aloes-wood and ambergris. She was seated among the lamps and the tapers
and the light of her face outshone the lustre of them all. When she saw
the old woman, she said to her, "O nurse, where is the beloved of my
heart?"; and the other replied, "O my lady, I cannot find him nor have
mine eyes espied him, but I have brought thee his own sister; and here
she is." Cried the Princess, "Art thou Jinn-mad? What need have I of
his sister? Say me, an a man's head irk him, doth he bind up his hand?"
The old woman answered, "No, by Allah, O my lady! But look on her, and
if she pleases thee, let her be with thee." Then she uncovered the
Prince's face, whereupon Hayat al-Nufus knew him and running to him,
pressed him to her bosom, and he pressed her to his breast. Then they
both fell down in a swoon and lay without sense a long while. The old
woman sprinkled rose-water upon them till they came to themselves, when
she kissed him on the mouth more than a thousand times and improvised
these couplets,

"Sought me this heart's dear love at gloom of night; * I rose
     in honour till he sat forthright,
And said, 'O aim of mine, O sole desire * In such night-visit
     hast of guards no fright?'
Replied he, 'Yes, I fearèd much, but Love * Robbed me of all
     my wits and reft my sprite.'
We clipt with kisses and awhile clung we, * For here 'twas
     safe; nor feared we watchman-wight:
Then rose we parting without doubtful deed * And shook out
     skirts where none a stain could sight."

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

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when her lover
visited Hayat al-Nufus in her palace, the twain embraced and she
improvised some happy couplets beseeming the occasion. And when she had
ended her extempore lines she said, "Is it indeed true that I see thee
in my abode and that thou art my cup-mate and my familiar?" Then
passion grew on her and love was grievous to her, so that her reason
well-nigh fled for joy and she improvised these couplets,

"With all my soul I'll ransom him who came to me in gloom * Of
     night, whilst I had waited long to see his figure loom;
And naught aroused me save his weeping voice of tender tone *
     And whispered I, 'Fair fall thy foot and welcome and well
His cheek I kissed a thousand times, and yet a thousand more;
     * Then clipt and clung about his breast enveiled in
     darkling room.
And cried, 'Now verily I've won the aim of every wish * So
     praise and prayers to Allah for this grace now best
Then slept we even as we would the goodliest of nights * Till
     morning came to end our night and light up earth with

As soon as it was day, she made him enter a place in her apartment
unknown to any and he abode there till nightfall, when she brought him
out and they sat in converse and carouse. Presently he said to her, "I
wish to return to my own country and tell my father what hath passed
between us, that he may equip his Wazir to demand thee in marriage of
thy sire." She replied, "O my love, I fear, an thou return to thy
country and kingdom, thou wilt be distracted from me and forget the
love of me; or that thy father will not further thy wishes in this
matter and I shall die. Meseems the better rede were that thou abide
with me and in my hand-grasp, I looking on thy face, and thou on mine,
till I devise some plan, whereby we may escape together some night and
flee to thy country; for I have cut off my hopes from my own people and
I despair of them." He rejoined, "I hear and obey;" and they fell again
to their carousal and conversing. He tarried with her thus for some
time till, one night, the wine was pleasant to them and they lay not
down nor did they sleep till break of day. Now it chanced that one of
the Kings sent her father a present, and amongst other things, a
necklace of union jewels, nine-and-twenty grains, to whose price a
King's treasures might not suffice. Quoth Abd al-Kadir, "This rivière
beseemeth none but my daughter Hayat al-Nufus;" and, turning to an
eunuch, whose jaw-teeth the Princess had knocked out for reasons best
known to herself,[FN#296] he called to him and said, "Carry the
necklace to thy lady and say to her, 'One of the Kings hath sent thy
father this, as a present, and its price may not be paid with money;
put it on thy neck.'" The slave took the necklace, saying in himself,
"Allah Almighty make it the last thing she shall put on in this world,
for that she deprived me of the benefit of my grinder-teeth!"; and
repairing to the Princess's apartment, found the door locked and the
old woman asleep before the threshold. He shook her, and she awoke in
affright and asked, "What dost thou want?"; to which he answered, "The
King hath sent me on an errand to his daughter." Quoth the nurse, "The
key is not here, go away, whilst I fetch it;" but quoth he, "I cannot
go back to the King without having done his commandment." So she went
away, as if to fetch the key; but fear overtook her and she sought
safety in flight. Then the eunuch awaited her awhile; then, finding she
did not return, he feared that the King would be angry at his delay; so
he rattled at the door and shook it, whereupon the bolt gave way and
the leaf opened. He entered and passed on, till he came to the seventh
door and walking in to the Princess's chamber found the place
splendidly furnished and saw candles and flagons there. At this
spectacle he marvelled and going close up to the bed, which was
curtained by a hanging of silk, embroidered with a net-work of jewels,
drew back the curtain from before the Princess and saw her sleeping
with her arms about the neck of a young man handsomer than herself;
whereat he magnified Allah Almighty, who had created such a youth of
vile water, and said, "How goodly be this fashion for one who hateth
men! How came she by this fellow? Methinks 'twas on his account that
she knocked out my back teeth!" Then he drew the curtain and made for
the door; but the King's daughter awoke in affright and seeing the
eunuch, whose name was Káfúr, called to him. He made her no answer: so
she came down from the bed on the estrade; and catching hold of his
skirt laid it on her head and kissed his feet, saying, "Veil what Allah
veileth!" Quoth he, "May Allah not veil thee nor him who would veil
thee! Thou didst knock out my grinders and saidst to me, 'Let none make
mention to me aught of men and their ways!'" So saying, he disengaged
himself from her grasp and running out, locked the door on them and set
another eunuch to guard it. Then he went in to the King who said to him
"Hast thou given the necklace to Hayat al-Nufus?" The eunuch replied,
"By Allah, thou deservest altogether a better fate;" and the King
asked, "What hath happened? Tell me quickly;" whereto he answered, "I
will not tell thee, save in private and between our eyes," but the King
retorted, saying, "Tell me at once and in public." Cried the eunuch,
"Then grant me immunity." So the King threw him the kerchief of
immunity and he said, "O King, I went into the Princess Hayat al-Nufus
and found her asleep in a carpeted chamber and on her bosom was a young
man. So I locked the door upon the two and came back to thee." When the
King heard these words he started up and taking a sword in his hand,
cried out to the Rais of the eunuchs, saying, "Take thy lads and go to
the Princess's chamber and bring me her and him who is with her as they
twain lie on the bed; but cover them both up."—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the King
commanded the head eunuch to take his lads and to fetch and set before
him Hayat al-Nufus and him who was with her, the chief and his men
entered the Princess's apartment where he found her standing up,
dissolved in railing tears, and the Prince by her side; so he said to
them, "Lie down on the bed, as thou wast and let him do likewise." The
King's daughter feared for her lover[FN#297] and said to him, "This is
no time for resistance." So they both lay down and the eunuchs covered
them up and carried the twain into the King's presence. Thereupon Abd
al-Kadir pulled off the coverings and the Princess sprang to her feet.
He looked at her and would have smitten her neck: but the Prince threw
himself on the father's breast, saying, "The fault was not hers but
mine only: kill me before thou killest her." The King made at him, to
cut him down, but Hayat al-Nufus cast herself on her father and said,
"Kill me not him; for he is the son of a great King, lord of all the
land in its length and breadth." When the King heard this, he turned to
the Chief Wazir, who was a gathering-place of all that is evil, and
said to him, "What sayst thou of this matter, O Minister?" Quoth his
Wazir, "What I say is that all who find themselves in such case as this
have need of lying, and there is nothing for it but to cut off both
their heads, after torturing them with all manner of tortures."
Hereupon the King called his sworder of vengeance, who came with his
lads, and said to him, "Take this gallows bird and strike off his head
and after do the like with this harlot and burn their bodies, and
consult me not about them a second time." So the headsmen put his hand
to her back, to take her; but the King cried out at him and cast at him
somewhat he hent in hand, which had well-nigh killed him, saying, "O
dog, how durst thou show ruth to those with whom I am wroth? Put thy
hand to her hair and drag her along by it, so that she may fall on her
face." Accordingly he haled her by her hair and the Prince in like
manner to the place of blood, where he tore off a piece of his skirt
and therewith bound the Prince's eyes putting the Princess last, in the
hope that some one would intercede for her. Then, having made ready the
Prince he swung his sharp sword three times (whilst all the troops wept
and prayed Allah to send them deliverance by some intercessor), and
raised his hand to cut off Ardashir's head when, behold, there arose a
cloud of dust, that spread and flew till it veiled the view. Now the
cause thereof was that when the young Prince had delayed beyond
measure, the King, his sire, had levied a mighty host and had marched
with it in person to get tidings of his son. Such was his case; but as
regards King Abd al-Kadir, when he saw this, he said, "O wights, what
is the meaning of yonder dust that dimmeth sights?" The Grand Wazir
sprang up and went out to reconnoitre and found behind the cloud men
like locusts, of whom no count could be made nor aught avail of aid,
filling the hills and plains and valleys. So he returned with the
report to the King, who said to him, "Go down and learn for us what may
be this host and the cause of its marching upon our country. Ask also
of their commander and salute him for me and enquire the reason of his
coming. An he came in quest of aught, we will aid him, and if he have a
blood-feud with one of the Kings, we will ride with him; or, if he
desire a gift, we will handsel him; for this is indeed a numerous host
and a power uttermost, and we fear for our land from its mischief." So
the Minister went forth and walked among the tents and troopers and
body-guards, and ceased not faring on from the first of the day till
near sundown, when he came to the warders with gilded swords in tents
star-studded. Passing these, he made his way through Emirs and Wazirs
and Nabobs and Chamberlains, to the pavilion of the Sultan, and found
him a mighty King. When the King's officers saw him, they cried out to
him, saying, "Kiss ground! Kiss ground!"[FN#298] He did so and would
have risen, but they cried out at him a second and a third time. So he
kissed the earth again and again and raised his head and would have
stood up, but fell down at full length for excess of awe. When at last
he was set between the hands of the King he said to him, "Allah prolong
thy days and increase thy sovranty and exalt thy rank, O thou
auspicious King! And furthermore, of a truth, King Abd al-Kadir
saluteth thee and kisseth the earth before thee and asketh on what
weighty business thou art come. An thou seek to avenge thee for blood
on any King, he will take horse in thy service; or, an thou come in
quest of aught, wherein it is in his power to help thee, he standeth up
at thy service on account thereof." So Ardashir's father replied to the
Wazir, saying, "O messenger, return to thy lord and tell him that the
most mighty King Sayf al-A'azam Shah, Lord of Shiraz, had a son who
hath been long absent from him and news of him have not come and all
traces of him have been cut off. An he be in this city, he will take
him and depart from you; but, if aught have befallen him or any
mischief have ensued to him from you, his father will lay waste your
land and make spoil of your goods and slay your men and seize your
women. Return, therefore, to thy lord in haste and tell him this, ere
evil befal him." Answered the Minister, "To hear is to obey!" and
turned to go away, when the Chamberlains cried out to him, saying,
"Kiss ground! Kiss ground!" So he kissed the ground a score of times
and rose not till his life-breath was in his nostrils.[FN#299] Then he
left the King's high court and returned to the city, full of anxious
thought concerning the affair of this King and the multitude of his
troops, and going in to King Abd al-Kadir, pale with fear and trembling
in his side-muscles, acquainted him with that had befallen him; —And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Wazir
returned from the court of the Great King, pale with fear and with
side-muscles quivering for dread exceeding; and acquainted his lord
with that had befallen him. Hereat disquietude and terror for himself
and for his people laid hold upon him and he said to the Minister, "O
Wazir, and who is this King's son?" Replied the other, "'Tis even he
whom thou badest put to death, but praised be Allah who hastened not
his slaughter! Else had his father wasted our lands and spoiled our
good." Quoth the King "See now thy corrupt judgment, in that thou didst
counsel us to slay him! Where is the young man, the son of yonder
magnanimous King?" And quoth the Wazir, "O mighty King, thou didst
command him be put to death." When the King heard this, he was clean
distraught and cried out from his heart's core and in-most of head,
saying, "Woe to you! Fetch me the Headsman forthright, lest death fall
on him!" So they fetched the Sworder and he said, "O King of the Age, I
have smitten off his head even as thou badest me." Cried Abd al-Kadir
"O dog, an this be true, I will assuredly send thee after him." The
Headsman replied, "O King, thou didst command me to slay him without
consulting thee a second time." Said the King, "I was in my wrath; but
speak the truth, ere thou lose thy life;" and said the Sworder, "O
King, he is yet in the chains of life." At this Abd al-Kadir rejoiced
and his heart was set at rest; then he called for Ardashir, and when he
came, he stood up to receive him and kissed his mouth, saying, "O my
son, I ask pardon of Allah Almighty for the wrong I have done thee, and
say thou not aught that may lower my credit with thy sire, the Great
King." The Prince asked "O King of the Age, and where is my father?"
and the other answered, "He is come hither on thine account." Thereupon
quoth Ardashir, "By thy worship, I will not stir from before thee till
I have cleared my honour and the honour of thy daughter from that which
thou laidest to our charge; for she is a pure virgin. Send for the
midwives and let them examine her before thee. An they find her
maidenhead gone, I give thee leave to shed my blood; and if they find
her a clean maid, her innocence of dishonour and mine also will be made
manifest." So he summoned the midwives, who examined the Princess and
found her a pure virgin and so told the King, seeking largesse of him.
He gave them what they sought, putting off his royal robes to bestow on
them, and in like manner he was bountiful to all who were in the Harim.
And they brought forth the scent-cups and perfumed all the Lords of
estate and Grandees; and not one but rejoiced with exceeding joy. Then
the King threw his arms about Ardashir's neck and entreated him with
all worship and honour, bidding his chief eunuchs bear him to the bath.
When he came out, he cast over his shoulders a costly robe and crowned
him with a coronet of jewels; he also girt him with a girdle of silk,
purfled with red gold and set with pearls and gems, and mounted him on
one of his noblest mares, with selle and trappings of gold inlaid with
pearls and jewels. Then he bade his Grandees and Captains mount on his
service and escort him to his father's presence; and charged him tell
his sire that King Abd al-Kadir was at his disposal, hearkening to and
obeying him in whatso he should bid or forbid. "I will not fail of
this," answered Ardashir and farewelling him, repaired to his father
who, at sight of him, was transported for delight and springing up,
advanced to meet him and embraced him, whilst joy and gladness spread
among all the host of the Great King. Then came the Wazirs and
Chamberlains and Captains and guards and kissed the ground before the
Prince and rejoiced in his coming: and it was a great day with them for
enjoyment, for the King's son gave leave to those of King Abd
al-Kadir's officers who had accompanied him and others of the
townsfolk, to view the ordinance of his father's host, without let or
stay, so they might know the multitude of the Great King's troops and
the might of his empire. And all who had seen him selling stuffs in the
linendrapers' bazar marvelled how his soul could have consented
thereto, considering the nobility of his spirit and the loftiness of
his dignity; but it was his love and inclination to the King's daughter
that to this had constrained him. Meanwhile, news of the multitude of
her lover's troops came to Hayat al-Nufus, who was still jailed by her
sire's commandment, till they knew what he should order respecting her,
whether pardon and release or death and burning; and she looked down
from the terrace-roof of the palace and, turning towards the mountains,
saw even these covered with armed men. When she beheld all those
warriors and knew that they were the army of Ardashir's father, she
feared lest he should be diverted from her by his sire and forget her
and depart from her, whereupon her father would slay her. So she called
a handmaid that was with her in her apartment by way of service, and
said to her, "Go to Ardashir, son of the Great King, and fear not. When
thou comest into his presence, kiss the ground before him and tell him
what thou art and say to him, 'My lady saluteth thee and would have
thee to know that she is a prisoner in her father's palace, awaiting
his sentence, whether he be minded to pardon her or put her to death,
and she beseecheth thee not to forget her or forsake her; for to-day
thou art all-powerful; and, in whatso thou commandest, no man dare
cross thee. Wherefore, an it seem good to thee to rescue her from her
sire and take her with thee, it were of thy bounty, for indeed she
endureth all these trials for thy sake. But, an this seem not good to
thee, for that thy desire of her is at an end, still speak to thy sire,
so haply he may intercede for her with her father and he depart not,
till he have made him set her free and taken surety from and made
covenant with him, that he will not go about to put her to death nor
work her aught of harm. This is her last word to thee, may Allah not
desolate her of thee, and so The Peace!'"[FN#300]—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the bondmaid
sent by Hayat al-Nufus made her way to Ardashir and delivered him her
lady's message, which when he heard, he wept with sore weeping and said
to her, "Know that Hayat al-Nufus is my mistress and that I am her
slave and the captive of her love. I have not forgotten what was
between us nor the bitterness of the parting day; so do thou say to
her, after thou hast kissed her feet, that I will speak with my father
of her, and he shall send his Wazir, who sought her aforetime in
marriage for me, to demand her hand once more of her sire, for he dare
not refuse. So, if he send to her to consult her, let her make no
opposition; for I will not return to my country without her." Then the
handmaid returned to Hayat al-Nufus; and, kissing her hands, delivered
to her the message, which when she heard, she wept for very joy and
returned thanks to Almighty Allah. Such was her case; but as regards
Ardashir, he was alone with his father that night and the Great King
questioned him of his case, whereupon he told him all that had befallen
him, first and last. Then quoth the King, "What wilt thou have me do
for thee, O my son? An thou desire Abd al-Kadir's ruin, I will lay
waste his lands and spoil his hoards and dishonour his house." Replied
Ardashir, "I do not desire that, O my father, for he hath done nothing
to me deserving thereof; but I wish for union with her; wherefore I
beseech thee of thy favour to make ready a present for her father (but
let it be a magnificent gift!) and send it to him by thy Minister, the
man of just judgment." Quoth the King, "I hear and consent;" and
sending for the treasures he had laid up from time past, brought out
all manner precious things and showed them to his son, who was pleased
with them. Then he called his Wazir and bade him bear the present with
him[FN#301] to King Abd al-Kadir and demand his daughter in marriage
for Ardashir, saying, "Accept the present and return him a reply." Now
from the time of Ardashir's departure, King Abd al-Kadir had been
troubled and ceased not to be heavy at heart, fearing the laying waste
of his reign and the spoiling of his realm; when behold, the Wazir came
in to him and saluting him, kissed ground before him. He rose up
standing and received him with honour; but the Minister made haste to
fall at his feet and kissing them cried, "Pardon, O King of the Age!
The like of thee should not rise to the like of me, for I am the least
of servants' slaves. Know, O King, that Prince Ardashir hath acquainted
his father with some of the favours and kindnesses thou hast done him,
wherefore he thanketh thee and sendeth thee in company of thy servant
who standeth before thee, a present, saluting thee and wishing thee
especial blessings and prosperities." Abd al-Kadir could not believe
what he heard of the excess of his fear, till the Wazir laid the
present before him, when he saw it to be such gift as no money could
purchase nor could one of the Kings of the earth avail to the like
thereof; wherefore he was belittled in his own eyes and springing to
his feet, praised Almighty Allah and glorified Him and thanked the
Prince. Then said the Minister to him, "O noble King, give ear to my
word and know that the Great King sendeth to thee, desiring thine
alliance, and I come to thee seeking and craving the hand of thy
daughter, the chaste dame and treasured gem Hayat al-Nufus, in wedlock
for his son Ardashir, wherefore, if thou consent to this proposal and
accept of him, do thou agree with me for her marriage-portion." Abd
al-Kadir hearing these words replied, "I hear and obey. For my part, I
make no objection, and nothing can be more pleasurable to me; but the
girl is of full age and reason and her affair is in her own hand. So be
assured that I will refer it to her and she shall choose for herself."
Then he turned to the chief eunuch and bade him go and acquaint the
Princess with the event. So he repaired to the Harim and, kissing the
Princess's hands, acquainted her with the Great King's offer adding,
"What sayest thou in answer?" "I hear and I obey," replied she.—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the chief
eunuch of the Harim having informed the Princess how she had been
demanded in marriage by the Great King and having heard her reply, "I
hear and I obey," returned therewith to the King and gave him this
answer, whereat he rejoiced with exceeding joy and, calling for a
costly robe of honour, threw it over the Wazir's shoulders.
Furthermore, he ordered him ten thousand dinars and bade him carry the
answer to the Great King and crave leave for him to pay him a visit.
"Hearing and obeying," answered the Minister; and, returning to his
master, delivered him the reply and Abd al-Kadir's message, and
repeated all their talk, whereat he rejoiced greatly and Ardashir was
transported for delight and his breast broadened and he was a most
happy man. King Sayf al-A'azam also gave King Abd al-Kadir leave to
come forth to visit him; so, on the morrow, he took horse and rode to
the camp of the Great King, who came to meet him and saluting him,
seated him in the place of honour, and gave him welcome; and they two
sat whilst Ardashir stood before them. Then arose an orator of the King
Abd al-Kadir's court and pronounced an eloquent discourse, giving the
Prince joy of the attainment of his desire and of his marriage with the
Princess, a Queen among King's daughters. When he sat down the Great
King caused bring a chest full of pearls and gems, together with fifty
thousand dinars, and said to King Abd al-Kadir, "I am my son's deputy
in all that concerneth this matter." So Abd al-Kadir acknowledged
receipt of the marriage-portion and amongst the rest, fifty thousand
dinars for the nuptial festivities; after which they fetched the Kazis
and the witnesses, who wrote out the contract of marriage between the
Prince and Princess, and it was a notable day, wherein all lovers made
merry and all haters and enviers were mortified. They spread the
marriage-feasts and banquets and lastly Ardashir went in unto the
Princess and found her a jewel which had been hidden, an union pearl
unthridden and a filly that none but he had ridden, so he notified this
to his sire. Then King Sayf al-A'azam asked his son, "Hast thou any
wish thou wouldst have fulfilled ere we depart?"; and he answered,
"Yes, O King, know that I would fain take my wreak of the Wazir who
entreated us on evil wise and the eunuch who forged a lie against us."
So the King sent forthright to Abd al-Kadir, demanding of him the
Minister and the castrato, whereupon he despatched them both to him and
he commanded to hang them over the city gate. After this, they abode a
little while and then sought of Abd al-Kadir leave for his daughter to
equip her for departure. So he equipped her and mounted her in a
Takhtrawán, a travelling litter of red gold, inlaid with pearls and
gems and drawn by noble steeds. She carried with her all her
waiting-women and eunuchs, as well as the nurse, who had returned,
after her flight, and resumed her office. Then King Sayf al-A'azam and
his son mounted and Abd al-Kadir mounted also with all the lords of his
land, to take leave of his son-in-law and daughter; and it was a day to
be reckoned of the goodliest of days. After they had gone some
distance, the Great King conjured Abd al-Kadir to turn back; so he
farewelled him and his son, after he had strained him to his breast and
kissed him between the eyes and thanked him for his grace and favours
and commended his daughter to his care. Then he went in to the Princess
and embraced her; and she kissed his hands and they wept in the
standing-place of parting. After this he returned to his capital and
Ardashir and his company fared on, till they reached Shiraz, where they
celebrated the marriage- festivities anew. And they abode in all
comfort and solace and joyance of life, till there came to them the
Destroyer of delights and Severer of societies; the Depopulator of
palaces and the Garnerer of graveyards. And men also relate the tale of


There was once in days of yore and in ages and times long gone before,
in Ajam-land a King Shahrimán[FN#302] hight, whose abiding place was
Khorásán. He owned an hundred concubines, but by none of them had he
been blessed with boon of child, male or female, all the days of his
life. One day, among the days, he bethought him of this and fell
lamenting for that the most part of his existence was past and he had
not been vouchsafed a son, to inherit the kingdom after him, even as he
had inherited it from his fathers and forebears; by reason whereof
there betided him sore cark and care and chagrin exceeding. As he sat
thus one of his Mamelukes came in to him and said, "O my lord, at the
door is a slave-girl with her merchant, and fairer than she eye hath
never seen." Quoth the King, "Hither to me with merchant and maid!";
and both came in to him. Now when Shahriman beheld the girl, he saw
that she was like a Rudaynian lance,[FN#303] and she was wrapped in a
veil of gold-purfled silk. The merchant uncovered her face, whereupon
the place was illumined by her beauty and her seven tresses hung down
to her anklets like horses' tails. She had Nature kohl'd eyes, heavy
hips and thighs and waist of slenderest guise; her sight healed all
maladies and quenched the fire of sighs, for she was even as the poet

"I love her madly for she is perfect fair, * Complete in
     gravity and gracious way;
Nor overtall nor overshort, the while * Too full for trousers
     are those hips that sway:
Her shape is midmost 'twixt o'er small and tall; * Nor long to
     blame nor little to gainsay:
O'erfall her anklets tresses black as night * Yet in her face
     resplends eternal day."

The King seeing her marvelled at her beauty and loveliness, her
symmetry and perfect grace and said to the merchant, "O Shaykh, how
much for this maiden?" Replied the merchant, "O my lord, I bought her
for two thousand dinars of the merchant who owned her before myself,
since when I have travelled with her three years and she hath cost me,
up to the time of my coming hither, other three thousand gold pieces;
but she is a gift from me to thee." The King robed him with a splendid
robe of honour and ordered him ten thousand ducats, whereupon he kissed
his hands, thanking him for his bounty and beneficence, and went his
ways. Then the King committed the damsel to the tire-women, saying,
"Amend ye the case of this maiden[FN#304] and adorn her and furnish her
a bower and set her therein." And he bade his chamberlains carry her
everything she needed and shut all the doors upon her. Now his capital
wherein he dwelt, was called the White City and was seated on the sea-
shore; so they lodged her in a chamber, whose latticed casements
overlooked the main.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the King after
taking the maiden, committed her to the tire-women bidding them amend
her case and set her in a bower, and ordered his chamberlains to shut
all the doors upon her when they had lodged her in a chamber whose
latticed casements overlooked the main. Then Shahriman went in to her;
but she spake not to him neither took any note of him.[FN#305] Quoth
he, 'Twould seem she hath been with folk who have not taught her
manners." Then he looked at the damsel and saw her surpassing beauty
and loveliness and symmetry and perfect grace, with a face like the
rondure of the moon at its full or the sun shining in the sheeny sky.
So he marvelled at her charms of favour and figure and he praised Allah
the Creator (magnified be His might!), after which he walked up to her
and sat him down by her side; then he pressed her to his bosom and
seating her on his thighs, sucked the dew of her lips, which he found
sweeter than honey. Presently he called for trays spread with richest
viands of all kinds and ate and fed her by mouthfuls, till she had
enough; yet she spoke not one word. The King began to talk to her and
asked her of her name; but she abode still silent and uttered not a
syllable nor made him any answer, neither ceased to hang down her head
groundwards; and it was but the excess of her beauty and loveliness and
the amorous grace that saved her from the royal wrath. Quoth he to
himself, "Glory be to God, the Creator of this girl! How charming she
is, save that she speaketh not! But perfection belongeth only to Allah
the Most High." And he asked the slave-girls whether she had spoken,
and they said, "From the time of her coming until now she hath not
uttered a word nor have we heard her address us." Then he summoned some
of his women and concubines and bade them sing to her and make merry
with her, so haply she might speak. Accordingly they played before her
all manner instruments of music and sports and what not and sang, till
the whole company was moved to mirth, except the damsel, who looked at
them in silence, but neither laughed nor spoke. The King's breast was
straitened; thereupon he dismissed the women and abode alone with that
damsel: after which he doffed his clothes and disrobing her with his
own hand, looked upon her body and saw it as it were a silvern ingot.
So he loved her with exceeding love and falling upon her, took her
maidenhead and found her a pure virgin; whereat he rejoiced with
excessive joy and said in himself, "By Allah, 'tis a wonder that a girl
so fair of form and face should have been left by the merchants a clean
maid as she is!"[FN#306] Then he devoted himself altogether to her,
heeding none other and forsaking all his concubines and favourites, and
tarried with her a whole year as it were a single day. Still she spoke
not till, one morning he said to her (and indeed the love of her and
longing waxed upon him), "O desire of souls, verily passion for thee is
great with me, and I have forsaken for thy sake all my slave-girls and
concubines and women and favourites and I have made thee my portion of
the world and had patience with thee a whole year; and now I beseech
Almighty Allah, of His favour, to soften thy heart to me, so thou mayst
speak to me. Or, an thou be dumb, tell me by a sign, that I may give up
hope of thy speech. I pray the Lord (extolled be He!) to vouchsafe me
by thee a son child, who shall inherit the kingdom after me; for I am
old and lone and have none to be my heir. Wherefore, Allah upon thee,
an thou love me, return me a reply." The damsel bowed her head awhile
in thought, and presently raising it, smiled in his face, whereat it
seemed to him as if lightning filled the chamber. Then she said, "O
magnanimous liege lord, and valorous lion, Allah hath answered thy
prayer, for I am with child by thee and the time of my delivery is near
at hand, though I know not if the unborn babe be male or
female.[FN#307] But, had I not conceived by thee, I had not spoken to
thee one word." When the King heard her speech, his face shone with joy
and gladness and he kissed her head and hands for excess of delight,
saying, "Alhamdolillah—laud to Lord—who hath vouchsafed me the things I
desired!, first, thy speech, and secondly, thy tidings that thou art
with child by me." Then he rose up and went forth from her and, seating
himself on the throne of his kingship, in an ecstasy of happiness, bade
his Wazir distribute to the poor and needy and widows and others an
hundred thousand dinars, by way of thank-offering to Allah Most High
and alms on his own account. The Minister did as bidden by the King
who, returning to the damsel, sat with her and embraced and pressed her
to his breast, saying, "O my lady, my queen, whose slave I am, prithee
what was the cause of this thy silence? Thou hast been with me a whole
year, night and day, waking and sleeping, yet hast not spoken to me
till this day." She replied, "Hearken, O King of the Age, and know that
I am a wretched exile, broken-hearted and far-parted from my mother and
my family and my brother." When the King heard her words, he knew her
desire and said, "As for thy saying that thou art wretched, there is
for such speech no ground, inasmuch as my kingdom and good and all I
possess are at thy service and I also am become thy bondman; but, as
for thy saying, 'I am parted from my mother and brother and family',
tell me where they are and I will send and fetch them to thee."
Thereupon she answered, "Know, then, O auspicious King, that I am
called Julnár[FN#308] the Sea born and that my father was of the Kings
of the Main. He died and left us his reign, but while we were yet
unsettled, behold, one of the other Kings arose against us and took the
realm from our hands. I have a brother called Sálih, and my mother also
is a woman of the sea; but I fell out with my brother 'The Pious' and
swore that I would throw myself into the hands of a man of the folk of
the land. So I came forth of the sea and sat down on the edge of an
island in the moonshine[FN#309], where a passer-by found me and,
carrying me to his house, besought me of love-liesse; but I smote him
on the head, so that he all but died; whereupon he carried me forth and
sold me to the merchant from whom thou hadst me, and this was a good
man and a virtuous; pious, loyal and generous. Were it not that thy
heart loved me and that thou promotedest me over all thy concubines, I
had not remained with thee a single hour, but had cast myself from this
window into the sea and gone to my mother and family; but I was ashamed
to fare themwards, being with child by thee; for they would have deemed
evilly of me and would not have credited me, even although I swore to
them, an I told them that a King had bought me with his gold and made
me his portion of the world and preferred me over all his wives and
every thing that his right hand possessed. This then is my story
and—the Peace!"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Fortieth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when
Julnar[FN#310] the Sea-born, answering the question of King Shahriman,
told him her past from first to last, the King thanked her and kissed
her between the eyes, saying, "By Allah, O my lady and light of mine
eyes, I cannot bear to be parted from thee one hour; and given thou
leave me, I shall die forthright. What then is to be done?" Replied
she, "O my lord, the time of my delivery is at hand and my family needs
must be present, that they may tend me; for the women of the land know
not the manner of child-bearing of the women of the sea, nor do the
daughters of the ocean know the manner of the daughters of the earth;
and when my people come, I shall be reconciled to them and they will be
reconciled to me." Quoth the King, "How do the people of the sea walk
therein, without being wetted?"; and quoth she, "O King of the Age, we
walk in the waters with our eyes open, as do ye on the ground, by the
blessing of the names graven upon the seal-ring of Solomon David-son
(on whom be peace!). But, O King, when my kith and kin come, I will
tell them how thou boughtest me with thy gold, and hast entreated me
with kindness and benevolence. It behoveth that thou confirm my words
to them and that they witness thine estate with their own eyes and they
learn that thou art a King, son of a King." He rejoined, "O my lady, do
what seemeth good to thee and what pleaseth thee and I will consent to
thee in all thou wouldst do." The damsel continued, "Yes, we walk in
the sea and see what is therein and behold the sun, moon, stars and
sky, as it were on the surface of earth; and this irketh us naught.
Know also that there be many peoples in the main and various forms and
creatures of all kinds that are on the land, and that all that is on
the land compared with that which is in the main is but a very small
matter." And the King marvelled at her words. Then she pulled out from
her bosom two bits of Comorin lign-aloes and, kindling fire in a
chafing-dish, chose somewhat of them and threw it in, then she whistled
a loud whistle and spake words none understood. Thereupon arose a great
smoke and she said to the King, who was looking on, "O my lord, arise
and hide thyself in a closet, that I may show thee my brother and
mother and family, whilst they see thee not; for I design to bring them
hither, and thou shalt presently espy a wondrous thing and shalt marvel
at the several creatures and strange shapes which Almighty Allah hath
created." So he arose without stay or delay and entering a closet, fell
a-watching what she should do. She continued her fumigations and
conjurations till the sea foamed and frothed turbid and there rose from
it a handsome young man of a bright favour, as he were the moon at its
full, with brow flower-white, cheeks of ruddy light and teeth like the
marguerite. He was the likest of all creatures to his sister and the
tongue of the case spoke in his praise these two couplets,

"The full moon groweth perfect once a month * But thy face
     each day we see perfectèd.
And the full moon dwelleth in single sign, * But to thee all
     hearts be a dwelling stead."

After him there came forth of the sea an ancient dame with hair
speckled gray and five maidens, as they were moons, bearing a likeness
to the damsel hight Julnar. The King looked upon them as they all
walked upon the face of the water, till they drew near the window and
saw Julnar, whereupon they knew her and went in to her. She rose to
them and met them with joy and gladness, and they embraced her and wept
with sore weeping. Then said they to her, "O Julnar, how couldst thou
leave us four years, and we unknowing of thine abiding place? By Allah
the world hath been straitened upon us for stress of severance from
thee, and we have had no delight of food or drink; no, not for one day,
but have wept with sore weeping night and day for the excess of our
longing after thee!" Then she fell to kissing the hands of the youth
her brother and her mother and cousins, and they sat with her awhile,
questioning her of her case and of what had betided her, as well as of
her present estate. "Know," replied she, "that, when I left you, I
issued from the sea and sat down on the shore of an island, where a man
found me and sold me to a merchant, who brought me to this city and
sold me for ten thousand dinars to the King of the country, who
entreated me with honour and forsook all his concubines and women and
favourites for my sake and was distracted by me from all he had and all
that was in his city." Quoth her brother, "Praised be Allah, who hath
reunited us with thee! But now, O my sister, 'tis my purpose that thou
arise and go with us to our country and people." When the King heard
these words, his wits fled him for fear lest the damsel accept her
brother's words and he himself avail not to stay her, albeit he loved
her passionately, and he became distracted with fear of losing her. But
Julnar answered, "By Allah, O my brother, the mortal who bought me is
lord of this city and he is a mighty King and a wise man, good and
generous with extreme generosity. Moreover, he is a personage of great
worth and wealth and hath neither son nor daughter. He hath entreated
me with honour and done me all manner of favour and kindness; nor, from
the day of his buying me to this time have I heard from him an ill word
to hurt my heart: but he hath never ceased to use me courteously; doing
nothing save with my counsel, and I am in the best of case with him and
in the perfection of fair fortune. Furthermore, were I to leave him, he
would perish; for he cannot endure to be parted from me an hour; and if
I left him, I also should die, for the excess of the love I bear him,
by reason of his great goodness to me during the time of my sojourn
with him; for, were my father alive, my estate with him would not be
like my estate with this great and glorious and puissant potentate. And
verily, ye see me with child by him and praise be to Allah, who hath
made me a daughter of the Kings of the sea, and my husband the
mightiest of the Kings of the land, and Allah, in very sooth, he hath
compensated me for whatso I lost."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Julnar the Sea
born told her brother all her tale, adding "Allah hath not cut me off,
but hath compensated me for whatso I lost. Now this King hath no issue,
male or female, so I pray the Almighty to vouchsafe me a son who shall
inherit of this mighty sovran that which the Lord hath bestowed upon
him of lands and palaces and possessions." Now when her brother and the
daughters of her uncle heard this her speech, their eyes were cooled
thereby and they said, "O Julnar, thou knowest thy value with us and
thou wottest the affection we bear thee and thou art certified that
thou art to us the dearest of all creatures and thou art assured that
we seek but ease for thee, without travail or trouble. Wherefore, an
thou be in unease, arise and go with us to our land and our folk; but,
an thou be at thine ease here, in honour and happiness, this is our
wish and our will; for we desire naught save thy welfare in any
case."[FN#311] Quoth she, "By Allah, I am here in the utmost ease and
solace and honour and grace!" When the King heard what she said, he
joyed with a heart set at rest and thanked her silently for this; the
love of her redoubled on him and entered his heart-core and he knew
that she loved him as he loved her and that she desired to abide with
him, that she might see his child by her. Then Julnar bade her women
lay the tables and set on all sorts of viands, which had been cooked in
kitchen under her own eyes, and fruits and sweetmeats, whereof she ate,
she and her kinsfolk. But, presently, they said to her, "O Julnar, thy
lord is a stranger to us, and we have entered his house, without his
leave or weeting. Thou hast extolled to us his excellence and eke thou
hast set before us of his victual whereof we have eaten; yet have we
not companied with him nor seen him, neither hath he seen us nor come
to our presence and eaten with us, so there might be between us bread
and salt." And they all left eating and were wroth with her, and fire
issued from their mouths, as from cressets; which when the King saw,
his wits fled for excess of fear of them. But Julnar arose and soothed
them and going to the closet where was the King her lord, said to him,
"O my lord, hast thou seen and heard how I praised thee and extolled
thee to my people and hast thou noted what they said to me of their
desire to carry me away with them?" Quoth he, "I both heard and saw:
May the Almighty abundantly requite thee for me! By Allah, I knew not
the full measure of thy fondness until this blessed hour, and now I
doubt not of thy love to me!" Quoth she, "O my lord, is the reward of
kindness aught but kindness? Verily, thou hast dealt generously with me
and hast entreated me with worship and I have seen that thou lovest me
with the utmost love, and thou hast done me all manner of honour and
kindness and preferred me above all thou lovest and desirest. So how
should my heart be content to leave thee and depart from thee, and how
should I do thus after all thy goodness to me? But now I desire of thy
courtesy that thou come and salute my family, so thou mayst see them
and they thee and pure love and friendship may be between you; for
know, O King of the Age, that my brother and mother and cousins love
thee with exceeding love, by reason of my praises of thee to them, and
they say, 'We will not depart from thee nor go to our homes till we
have foregathered with the King and saluted him.' For indeed they
desire to see thee and make acquaintance with thee." The King replied,
"To hear is to obey, for this is my very own wish." So saying, he rose
and went in to them and saluted them with the goodliest salutation; and
they sprang up to him and received him with the utmost worship, after
which he sat down in the palace and ate with them; and he entertained
them thus for the space of thirty days. Then, being desirous of
returning home, they took leave of the King and Queen and departed with
due permission to their own land, after he had done them all possible
honour. Awhile after this, Julnar completed the days of her pregnancy
and the time of her delivery being come, she bore a boy, as he were the
moon at its full; whereat the utmost joy betided the King, for that he
had never in his life been vouchsafed son or daughter. So they held
high festival and decorated the city seven days, in the extreme of joy
and jollity: and on the seventh day came Queen Julnar's mother,
Faráshah hight,[FN#312] and brother and cousins, whenas they knew of
her delivery.—And Shahrazad perceived the light of day and ceased to
say her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Julnar was
brought to bed and was visited by her people, the King received them
with joy at their coming and said to them, "I said that I would not
give my son a name till you should come and name him of your
knowledge." So they named him Badr Básim,[FN#313] and all agreed upon
this name. Then they showed the child to his uncle Salih, who took him
in his arms and arising began to walk about the chamber with him in all
directions right and left. Presently he carried him forth of the palace
and going down to the salt sea, fared on with him, till he was hidden
from the King's sight. Now when Shahriman saw him take his son and
disappear with him in the depth of the sea, he gave the child up for
lost and fell to weeping and wailing; but Julnar said to him, "O King
of the Age, fear not, neither grieve for thy son, for I love my child
more than thou and he is with my brother, so reck thou not of the sea
neither fear for him drowning. Had my brother known that aught of harm
would betide the little one, he had not done this deed; and he will
presently bring thee thy son safe, Inshallah—an it please the
Almighty." Nor was an hour past before the sea became turbid and
troubled and King Salih came forth and flew from the sea till he came
up to them with the child lying quiet and showing a face like the moon
on the night of fulness. Then, looking at the King he said, "Haply thou
fearedst harm for thy son, whenas I plunged into the sea with him?"
Replied the father, "Yes, O my lord, I did indeed fear for him and
thought he would never be saved therefrom." Rejoined Salih, "O King of
the land, we pencilled his eyes with an eye powder we know of and
recited over him the names graven upon the seal-ring of Solomon
David-son (on whom be the Peace!), for this is what we use to do with
children newly born among us; and now thou needst not fear for him
drowning or suffocation in all the oceans of the world, if he should go
down into them; for, even as ye walk on the land, so walk we in the
sea." Then he pulled out of his pocket a casket, graven and sealed and,
breaking open the seals, emptied it; whereupon there fell from it
strings of all manner jacinths and other jewels, besides three hundred
bugles of emerald and other three hundred hollow gems, as big as
ostrich eggs, whose light dimmed that of sun and moon. Quoth Salih, "O
King of the Age, these jewels and jacinths are a present from me to
thee. We never yet brought thee a gift, for that we knew not Julnar's
abiding place neither had we of her any tidings or trace; but now that
we see thee to be united with her and we are all become one thing, we
have brought thee this present; and every little while we will bring
thee the like thereof, Inshallah! for that these jewels and jacinths
are more plentiful with us than pebbles on the beach and we know the
good and the bad of them and their whereabouts and the way to them, and
they are easy to us." When the King saw the jewels, his wits were
bewildered and his sense was astounded and he said, "By Allah, one
single gem of these jewels is worth my realm!" Then he thanked for his
bounty Salih the Sea born and, looking towards Queen Julnar, said, "I
am abashed before thy brother, for that he hath dealt munificently by
me and bestowed on me this splendid gift, which the folk of the land
were unable to present." So she thanked her brother for his deed and he
said, "O King of the Age, thou hast the prior claim on us and it
behoves us to thank thee, for thou hast entreated our sister with
kindness and we have entered thy dwelling and eaten of thy victual; and
the poet saith[FN#314],

'Had I wept before she did in my passion for Saada, * I had
     healed my soul before repentance came.
But she wept before I did: her tears drew mine; and I said, *
     The merit belongs to the precedent.'"

"And" (resumed Salih the Pious) "if we stood on our faces in thy
service, O King of the Age, a thousand years, yet had we not the might
to requite thee, and this were but a scantling of thy due." The King
thanked him with heartiest thanks and the Merman and Merwomen abode
with him forty days' space, at the end of which Salih arose and kissed
the ground before his brother in law, who asked "What wantest thou, O
Salih?" He answered, "O King of the Age, indeed thou hast done us
overabundant favours, and we crave of thy bounties that thou deal
charitably with us and grant us permission to depart; for we yearn
after our people and country and kinsfolk and our homes; so will we
never forsake thy service nor that of my sister and my nephew; and by
Allah, O King of the Age, 'tis not pleasant to my heart to part from
thee; but how shall we do, seeing that we have been reared in the sea
and that the sojourn of the shore liketh us not?" When the King heard
these words he rose to his feet and farewelled Salih the Sea-born and
his mother and his cousins, and all wept together, because of parting
and presently they said to him, "Anon we will be with thee again, nor
will we forsake thee, but will visit thee every few days." Then they
flew off and descending into the sea, disappeared from sight.—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the
relations of Julnar the Sea-born farewelled the King and her, weeping
together because of parting; then they flew off and descending into the
depths disappeared from sight. After this King Shahriman showed the
more kindness to Julnar and honoured her with increase of honour; and
the little one grew up and flourished, whilst his maternal uncle and
grandam and cousins visited the King every few days and abode with him
a month or two months at a time. The boy ceased not to increase in
beauty and loveliness with increase of years, till he attained the age
of fifteen and was unique in his perfection and symmetry. He learnt
writing and Koran reading; history, syntax and lexicography; archery,
spearplay and horsemanship and what not else behoveth the sons of
Kings; nor was there one of the children of the folk of the city, men
or women, but would talk of the youth's charms, for he was of
surpassing beauty and perfection, even such an one as is praised in the
saying of the poet,[FN#315]

"The whiskers write upon his cheek, with ambergris on pearl, *
     Two lines, as 'twere with jet upon an apple, line for
Death harbours in his languid eye and slays with every glance,
     * And in his cheek is drunkenness, and not in any wine."

And in that of another,

"Upsprings from table of his lovely cheeks[FN#316]* A growth
     like broidery my wonder is:
As 'twere a lamp that burns through night hung up * Beneath
     the gloom[FN#317] in chains of ambergris."

And indeed the King loved him with exceeding love, and summoning his
Wazir and Emirs and the Chief Officers of state and Grandees of his
realm, required of them a binding oath that they would make Badr Basim
King over them after his sire; and they sware the oath gladly, for the
sovran was liberal to the lieges, pleasant in parley and a very compend
of goodness, saying naught but that wherein was advantage for the
people. On the morrow Shahriman mounted, with all his troops and Emirs
and Lords, and went forth into the city and returned. When they drew
near the palace, the King dismounted, to wait upon his son who abode on
horseback, and he and all the Emirs and Grandees bore the saddlecloth
of honour before him, each and every of them bearing it in his turn,
till they came to the vestibule of the palace, where the Prince
alighted and his father and the Emirs embraced him and seated him on
the throne of Kingship, whilst they (including his sire) stood before
him. Then Badr Basim judged the people, deposing the unjust and
promoting the just and continued so doing till near upon noon, when he
descended from the throne and went in to his mother, Julnar the
Sea-born, with the crown upon his head, as he were the moon. When she
saw him, with the King standing before him, she rose and kissing him,
gave him joy of the Sultanate and wished him and his sire length of
life and victory over their foes. He sat with her and rested till the
hour of mid afternoon prayer, when he took horse and repaired, with the
Emirs before him, to the Maydan plain, where he played at arms with his
father and his lords, till night fall, when he returned to the palace,
preceded by all the folk. He rode forth thus every day to the tilting
ground, returning to sit and judge the people and do justice between
carl and churl; and thus he continued doing a whole year, at the end of
which he began to ride out a-hunting and a-chasing and to go round
about in the cities and countries under his rule, proclaiming security
and satisfaction and doing after the fashion of Kings; and he was
unique among the people of his day for glory and valour and just
dealing among the subjects. And it chanced that one day the old King
fell sick and his fluttering heart forebode him of translation to the
Mansion of Eternity. His sickness grew upon him till he was nigh upon
death, when he called his son and commended his mother and subjects to
his care and caused all the Emirs and Grandees once more swear
allegiance to the Prince and assured himself of them by strongest
oaths; after which he lingered a few days and departed to the mercy of
Almighty Allah. His son and widow and all the Emirs and Wazirs and
Lords mourned over him, and they built him a tomb and buried him
therein. They ceased not ceremonially to mourn for him a whole month,
till Salih and his mother and cousins arrived and condoled with their
grieving for the King and said, "O Julnar, though the King be dead, yet
hath he left this noble and peerless youth, and not dead is whoso
leaveth the like of him, the rending lion and the shining moon."—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Salih brother
of Julnar and her mother and cousins said to her, "Albeit the King be
dead, yet hath he left behind him as successor this noble and peerless
youth, the rending lion and the shining moon." Thereupon the Grandees
and notables of the Empire went in to King Badr Basim and said to him,
"O King, there is no harm in mourning for the late sovran: but over-
mourning beseemeth none save women; wherefore occupy thou not thy heart
and our hearts with mourning for thy sire; inasmuch as he hath left
thee behind him, and whoso leaveth the like of thee is not dead." Then
they comforted him and diverted him and lastly carried him to the bath.
When he came out of the Hammam, he donned a rich robe, purfled with
gold and embroidered with jewels and jacinths; and, setting the royal
crown on his head, sat down on his throne of kingship and ordered the
affairs of the folk, doing equal justice between strong and weak, and
exacting from the prince the dues of the pauper; wherefore the people
loved him with exceeding love. Thus he continued doing for a full year,
whilst, every now and then. his kinsfolk of the sea visited him, and
his life was pleasant and his eye was cooled. Now it came to pass that
his uncle Salih went in one night of the nights to Julnar and saluted
her; whereupon she rose and embracing him seated him by her side and
asked him, "O my brother, how art thou and my mother and my cousins?"
He answered, "O my sister, they are well and glad and in good case,
lacking naught save a sight of thy face." Then she set somewhat of food
before him and he ate, after which talk ensued between the twain and
they spake of King Badr Basim and his beauty and loveliness, his
symmetry and skill in cavalarice and cleverness and good breeding. Now
Badr was propped upon his elbow hard by them; and, hearing his mother
and uncle speak of him, he feigned sleep and listened to their
talk.[FN#318] Presently Salih said to his sister, "Thy son is now
seventeen years old and is unmarried, and I fear lest mishap befal him
and he have no son; wherefore it is my desire to marry him to a
Princess of the princesses of the sea, who shall be a match for him in
beauty and loveliness." Quoth Julnar, "Name them to me for I know them
all." So Salih proceeded to enumerate them to her, one by one, but to
each she said, "I like not this one for my son; I will not marry him
but to one who is his equal in beauty and loveliness and wit and piety
and good breeding and magnanimity and dominion and rank and
lineage."[FN#319] Quoth Salih, "I know none other of the daughters of
the Kings of the sea, for I have numbered to thee more than an hundred
girls and not one of them pleaseth thee: but see, O my sister, whether
thy son be asleep or no." So she felt Badr and finding on him the signs
of slumber said to Salih, "He is asleep; what hast thou to say and what
is thine object in making sure his sleeping?" Replied he, "O my sister,
know that I have bethought me of a Mermaid of the mermaids who
befitteth thy son; but I fear to name her, lest he be awake and his
heart be taken with her love and maybe we shall be unable to win to
her; so should he and we and the Grandees of the realm be wearied in
vain and trouble betide us through this; for, as saith the poet,

'Love, at first sight, is a spurt of spray;[FN#320] * But a spreading
sea when it gaineth sway.'"

When she heard these words, she cried, "Tell me the condition of this
girl, and her name for I know all the damsels of the sea, Kings'
daughters and others; and, if I judge her worthy of him, I will demand
her in marriage for him of her father, though I spend on her whatso my
hand possesseth. So recount to me all anent her and fear naught, for my
son sleepeth." Quoth Salih, "I fear lest he be awake; and the poet

'I loved him, soon as his praise I heard; * For ear oft loveth ere eye
survey.' "

But Julnar said, "Speak out and be brief and fear not, O my brother."
So he said, "By Allah, O my sister, none is worthy of thy son save the
Princess Jauharah, daughter of King Al- Samandal,[FN#321] for that she
is like unto him in beauty and loveliness and brilliancy and
perfection; nor is there found, in sea or on land, a sweeter or
pleasanter of gifts than she; for she is prime in comeliness and
seemlihead of face and symmetrical shape of perfect grace; her cheek is
ruddy dight, her brow flower white, her teeth gem-bright, her eyes
blackest black and whitest white, her hips of heavy weight, her waist
slight and her favour exquisite. When she turneth she shameth the wild
cattle[FN#322] and the gazelles and when she walketh, she breedeth envy
in the willow branch: when she unveileth her face outshineth sun and
moon and all who look upon her she enslaveth soon: sweet lipped and
soft sided indeed is she." Now when Julnar heard what Salih said, she
replied, "Thou sayest sooth, O my brother! By Allah, I have seen her
many and many a time and she was my companion, when we were little ones
but now we have no knowledge of each other, for constraint of distance;
nor have I set eyes on her for eighteen years. By Allah none is worthy
of my son but she!" Now Badr heard all they said and mastered what had
passed, first and last, of these praises bestowed on Jauharah daughter
of King Al- Samandal; so he fell in love with her on hearsay,
pretending sleep the while, wherefore fire was kindled in his heart on
her account full sore and he was drowned in a sea without bottom or
shore.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when King Badr
Basim heard the words of his uncle Salih and his mother Julnar,
praising the daughter of King Al-Samandal, a flame of fire burnt in his
heart full sore and he was drowned in a sea which hath nor bottom nor
shore. Then Salih, looking at his sister, exclaimed, "By Allah, O my
sister, there is no greater fool among the Kings of the sea than her
father nor one more violent of temper than he! So name thou not the
girl to thy son, till we demand her in marriage of her father. If he
favour us with his assent, we will praise Allah Almighty; and if he
refuse us and will not give her to thy son to wife, we will say no more
about it and seek another match." Answered Julnar, "Right is thy rede;"
and they parleyed no more: but Badr passed the night with a heart on
fire with passion for Princess Jauharah. However he concealed his case
and spake not of her to his mother or his uncle, albeit he was on coals
of fire for love of her. Now when it was morning, the King and his
uncle went to the Hammam-bath and washed, after which they came forth
and drank wine and the servants set food before them, whereof they and
Julnar ate their sufficiency, and washed their hands. Then Salih rose
and said to his nephew and sister, "With your leave, I would fain go to
my mother and my folk for I have been with you some days and their
hearts are troubled with awaiting me." But Badr Basim said to him,
"Tarry with us this day;" and he consented. Then quoth the King, "Come,
O my uncle, let us go forth to the garden." So they sallied forth and
promenaded about the pastures and took their solace awhile, after which
King Badr lay down under a shady tree, thinking to rest and sleep; but
he remembered his uncle's description of the maiden and her beauty and
loveliness and shed railing tears, reciting these two couplets[FN#323],

"Were it said to me while the flame is burning within me, *
     And the fire blazing in my heart and bowels,
'Wouldst thou rather that thou shouldest behold them * Or a
     draught of pure water?'—I would answer, 'Them.' "

Then he sighed and wept and lamented, reciting these verses also,

"Who shall save me from love of a lovely gazelle, * Brighter
     browed than the sunshine, my bonnibel!
My heart, erst free from her love, now burns * With fire for
     the maid of Al-Samandal."

When Salih heard what his nephew said, he smote hand upon hand and
said, "There is no god but the God! Mohammed is the Apostle of God and
there is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious,
the Great!" adding, "O my son, heardest thou what passed between me and
thy mother respecting Princess Jauharah?" Replied Badr Basim, "Yes, O
my uncle, and I fell in love with her by hearsay through what I heard
you say. Indeed, my heart cleaveth to her and I cannot live without
her." Rejoined his uncle, "O King, let us return to thy mother and tell
her how the case standeth and crave her leave that I may take thee with
me and seek the Princess in marriage of her sire; after which we will
farewell her and I and thou will return. Indeed, I fear to take thee
and go without her leave, lest she be wroth with me; and verily the
right would be on her side, for I should be the cause of her separation
from us. Moreover, the city would be left without king and there would
be none to govern the citizens and look to their affairs, so should the
realm be disordered against thee and the kingship depart from thy
hands." But Badr Basim, hearing these words, cried, "O my uncle, if I
return to my mother and consult her on such matter, she will not suffer
me to do this; wherefore I will not return to my mother nor consult
her." And he wept before him and presently added, "I will go with thee
and tell her not and after will return." When Salih heard what his
nephew said, he was confused anent his case and said, "I crave help of
the Almighty in any event." Then, seeing that Badr Basim was resolved
to go with him, whether his mother would let him or no, he drew from
his finger a seal ring, whereon were graven certain of the names of
Allah the Most High, and gave it to him, saying, "Put this on thy
finger, and thou shalt be safe from drowning and other perils and from
the mischief of sea beasts and great fishes." So King Badr Basim took
the ring and set it on his finger. Then they dove into the deep—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Badr Basim and
his uncle, after diving into the deep, fared on till they came to
Salih's palace, where they found Badr Basim's grandmother, the mother
of his mother, seated with her kinsfolk and, going in to them, kissed
their hands. When the old Queen saw Badr, she rose to him and embracing
him, kissed him between the eyes and said to him, "A blessed coming, O
my son! How didst thou leave thy mother Julnar?" He replied, "She is
well in health and fortune, and saluteth thee and her uncle's
daughters." Then Salih related to his mother what had occurred between
him and his sister and how King Badr Basim had fallen in love with the
Princess Jauharah daughter of Al- Samandal by report and told her the
whole tale from beginning to end adding, "He hath not come save to
demand her in wedlock of her sire;" which when the old Queen heard, she
was wroth against her son with exceeding wrath and sore troubled and
concerned and said, "O Salih, O my son, in very sooth thou diddest
wrong to name the Princess before thy nephew, knowing, as thou dost,
that her father is stupid and violent, little of wit and tyrannical of
temper, grudging his daughter to every suitor; for all the Monarchs of
the Main have sought her hand, but he rejected them all; nay, he would
none of them, saying, 'Ye are no match for her in beauty or in
loveliness or in aught else.' Wherefore we fear to demand her in
wedlock of him, lest he reject us, even as be hath rejected others; and
we are a folk of high spirit and should return broken- hearted."
Hearing these words Salih answered, "O my mother what is to do? For
King Badr Basim saith, 'There is no help but that I seek her in
marriage of her sire, though I expend my whole kingdom'; and he
avoucheth that, an he take her not to wife, he will die of love for her
and longing." And Salih continued, "He is handsomer and goodlier than
she; his father was King of all the Persians, whose King he now is, and
none is worthy of Jauharah save Badr Basim. Wherefore I purpose to
carry her father a gift of jacinths and jewels befitting his dignity,
and demand her of him in marriage. An he object to us that he is a
King, behold, our man also is a King and the son of a King; or, if he
object to us her beauty, behold our man is more beautiful than she; or,
again, if he object to us the vastness of his dominion, behold our
man's dominion is vaster than hers and her father's and numbereth more
troops and guards, for that his kingdom is greater than that of Al-
Samandal. Needs must I do my endeavour to further the desire of my
sister's son, though it relieve me of my life; because I was the cause
of whatso hath betided; and, even as I plunged him into the ocean of
her love, so will I go about to marry him to her, and may Almighty
Allah help me thereto!" Rejoined his mother, "Do as thou wilt, but
beware of giving her father rough words, whenas thou speakest with him;
for thou knowest his stupidity and violence and I fear lest he do thee
a mischief, for he knoweth not respect for any." And Salih answered,
"Hearkening and obedience." Then he sprang up and taking two bags full
of gems such as rubies and bugles of emerald, noble ores and all manner
jewels gave them to his servants to carry and set out with his nephew
for the palace of Al-Samandal. When they came thither, he sought
audience of the King and being admitted to his presence, kissed ground
before him and saluted him with the goodliest Salam. The King rose to
him and honouring him with the utmost honour, bade him be seated. So he
sat down and presently the King said to him, "A blessed coming: indeed
thou hast desolated us, O Salih! But what bringeth thee to us? Tell me
thine errand that we may fulfil it to thee." Whereupon Salih arose and,
kissing the ground a second time, said, "O King of the Age, my errand
is to Allah and the magnanimous liege lord and the valiant lion, the
report of whose good qualities the caravans far and near have dispread
and whose renown for benefits and beneficence and clemency and
graciousness and liberality to all climes and countries hath sped."
Thereupon he opened the two bags and, displaying their contents before
Al-Samandal, said to him, "O King of the Age, haply wilt thou accept my
gift and by showing favour to me heal my heart."—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Salih
offered his gift to the King, saying, "My aim and end is that the
Sovran show favour to me and heal my heart by accepting my present,"
King Al-Samandal asked, "With what object dost thou gift me with this
gift? Tell me thy tale and acquaint me with thy requirement. An its
accomplishment be in my power I will straightway accomplish it to thee
and spare thee toil and trouble; and if I be unable thereunto, Allah
compelleth not any soul aught beyond its power.''[FN#324] So Salih rose
and kissing ground three times, said, "O King of the Age, that which I
desire thou art indeed able to do; it is in thy power and thou art
master thereof; and I impose not on the King a difficulty, nor am I
Jinn-demented, that I should crave of the King a thing whereto he
availeth not; for one of the sages saith, 'An thou wouldst be complied
with ask that which can be readily supplied'. Wherefore, that of which
I am come in quest, the King (whom Allah preserve!) is able to grant."
The King replied, "Ask what thou wouldst have, and state thy case and
seek thy need." Then said Salih,[FN#325] "O King of the Age, know that
I come as a suitor, seeking the unique pearl and the hoarded jewel, the
Princess Jauharah, daughter of our lord the King; wherefore, O King
disappoint thou not thy suitor." Now when the King heard this, he
laughed till he fell backwards, in mockery of him and said, "O Salih, I
had thought thee a man of worth and a youth of sense, seeking naught
save what was reasonable and speaking not save advisedly. What then
hath befallen thy reason and urged thee to this monstrous matter and
mighty hazard, that thou seekest in marriage daughters of Kings, lords
of cities and climates? Say me, art thou of a rank to aspire to this
great eminence and hath thy wit failed thee to this extreme pass that
thou affrontest me with this demand?" Replied Salih, "Allah amend the
King! I seek her not for myself (albeit, an I did, I am her match and
more than her match, for thou knowest that my father was King of the
Kings of the sea, for all thou art this day our King), but I seek her
for King Badr Basim, lord of the lands of the Persians and son of King
Shahriman, whose puissance thou knowest. An thou object that thou art a
mighty great King, King Badr is a greater; and if thou object thy
daughter's beauty King Badr is more beautiful than she and fairer of
form and more excellent of rank and lineage; and he is the champion of
the people of his day. Wherefore, if thou grant my request, O King of
the Age thou wilt have set the thing in its stead; but, if thou deal
arrogantly with us, thou wilt not use us justly nor travel with us the
'road which is straight'.[FN#326] Moreover, O King, thou knowest that
the Princess Jauharah, the daughter of our lord the King must needs be
wedded and bedded, for the sage saith, a girl's lot is either grace of
marriage or the grave.[FN#327] Wherefore, an thou mean to marry her, my
sister's son is worthier of her than any other man." Now when King
Al-Samandal heard Salih's words, he was wroth with exceeding wrath; his
reason well nigh fled and his soul was like to depart his body for
rage, and he cried, "O dog, shall the like of thee dare to bespeak me
thus and name my daughter in the assemblies,[FN#328] saying that the
son of thy sister Julnar is a match for her? Who art thou and who is
this sister of thine and who is her son and who was his father,[FN#329]
that thou durst say to me such say and address me with such address?
What are ye all, in comparison with my daughter, but dogs?" And he
cried out to his pages, saying, "Take yonder gallows-bird's head!" So
they drew their swords and made for Salih but he fled and for the
palace gate sped; and reaching the entrance, he found of his cousins
and kinsfolk and servants, more than a thousand horse armed cap-à- pie
in iron and close knitted mail-coats, hending in hand spears and naked
swords glittering white. And these when they saw Salih come running out
of the palace (they having been sent by his mother to his succour),
questioned him and he told them what was to do; whereupon they knew
that the King was a fool and violent-tempered to boot. So they
dismounted and baring their blades, went in to the King Al-Samandal,
whom they found seated upon the throne of his Kingship, unaware of
their coming and enraged against Salih with furious rage; and they
beheld his eunuchs and pages and officers unprepared. When the King saw
them enter, drawn brand in hand, he cried out to his people, saying
"Woe to you! Take me the heads of these hounds!" But ere an hour had
sped Al-Samandal's party were put to the route and relied upon flight,
and Salih and his kinsfolk seized upon the King and pinioned him.—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Salih and
his kinsfolk pinioned the King, Princess Jauharah awoke and knew that
her father was a captive and his guards slain. So she fled forth the
palace to a certain island, and climbing up into a high tree, hid
herself in its summit. Now when the two parties came to blows, some of
King Al-Samandal's pages fled and Badr Basim meeting them, questioned
them of their case and they told him what had happened. But when he
heard that the King was a prisoner, Badr feared for himself and fled,
saying in his heart, "Verily, all this turmoil is on my account and
none is wanted but I." So he sought safety in flight, security to
sight, knowing not whither he went; but destiny from Eternity
fore-ordained drave him to the very island where the Princess had taken
refuge, and he came to the very tree whereon she sat and threw himself
down, like a dead man, thinking to lie and repose himself and knowing
not there is no rest for the pursued, for none knoweth what Fate hideth
for him in the future. As he lay down, he raised his eyes to the tree
and they met the eyes of the Princess. So he looked at her and seeing
her to be like the moon rising in the East, cried, "Glory to Him who
fashioned yonder perfect form, Him who is the Creator of all things and
who over all things is Almighty! Glory to the Great God, the Maker, the
Shaper and Fashioner! By Allah, if my presentiments be true, this is
Jauharah, daughter of King Al-Samandal! Methinks that, when she heard
of our coming to blows with her father, she fled to this island and,
happening upon this tree, hid herself on its head; but, if this be not
the Princess herself, 'tis one yet goodlier than she." Then he
bethought himself of her case and said in himself, "I will arise and
lay hands on her and question her of her condition; and, if she be
indeed the she, I will demand her in wedlock of herself and so win my
wish." So he stood up and said to her, "O end of all desire, who art
thou and who brought thee hither?" She looked at Badr Basim and seeing
him to be as the full moon,[FN#330] when it shineth from under the
black cloud, slender of shape and sweet of smile answered, "O fair of
fashion, I am Princess Jauharah, daughter of King Al-Samandal, and I
took refuge in this place, because Salih and his host came to blows
with my sire and slew his troops and took him prisoner, with some of
his men, wherefore I fled, fearing for my very life," presently adding,
"And I weet not what fortune hath done with my father." When King Badr
Basim heard these words he marvelled with exceeding marvel at this
strange chance, and thought: "Doubtless I have won my wish by the
capture of her sire." Then he looked at Jauharah and said to her, "Come
down, O my lady; for I am slain for love of thee and thine eyes have
captivated me. On my account and thine are all these broils and
battles; for thou must know that I am King Badr Basim, Lord of the
Persians and Salih is my mother's brother and he it is who came to thy
sire to demand thee of him in marriage. As for me, I have quitted my
kingdom for thy sake, and our meeting here is the rarest coincidence.
So come down to me and let us twain fare for thy father's palace, that
I may beseech uncle Salih to release him and I may make thee my lawful
wife." When Jauharah heard his words, she said in herself, " 'Twas on
this miserable gallows bird's account, then, that all this hath
befallen and that my father hath fallen prisoner and his chamberlains
and suite have been slain and I have been departed from my palace, a
miserable exile and have fled for refuge to this island. But, an I
devise not against him some device to defend myself from him, he will
possess himself of me and take his will of me; for he is in love and
for aught that he doeth a lover is not blamed.'" Then she beguiled him
with winning words and soft speeches, whilst he knew not the perfidy
against him she purposed, and asked him, "O my lord and light of my
eyes, say me, art thou indeed King Badr Basim, son of Queen Julnar?"
And he answered, "Yes, O my lady."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Jauharah,
daughter of King Al-Samandal, asked the youth, "Art thou in very sooth
King Badr Basim, son of Queen Julnar?" And he answered, "Yes, O my
lady!" Then she, "May Allah cut off my father and gar his kingdom cease
from him and heal not his heart neither avert from him strangerhood, if
he could desire a comelier than thou or aught goodlier than these fair
qualities of thine! By Allah, he is of little wit and judgment!"
presently adding, "But, O King of the Age, punish him not for that he
hath done; more by token that an thou love me a span, verily I love
thee a cubit. Indeed, I have fallen into the net of thy love and am
become of the number of thy slain. The love that was with thee hath
transferred itself to me and there is left thereof with thee but a
tithe of that which is with me." So saying, she came down from the tree
and drawing near him strained him to her bosom and fell to kissing him;
whereat passion and desire for her redoubled on him and doubting not
but she loved him, he trusted in her, and returned her kisses and
caresses. Presently he said to her, "By Allah, O Princess, my uncle
Salih set forth to me not a fortieth part of thy charms; no, nor a
quarter-carat[FN#331] of the four-and-twenty." Then Jauharah pressed
him to her bosom and pronounced some unintelligible words; then spat on
his face, saying, "Quit this form of man and take shape of bird, the
handsomest of birds, white of robe, with red bill and legs." Hardly had
she spoken, when King Badr Basim found himself transformed into a bird,
the handsomest of birds, who shook himself and stood looking at her.
Now Jauharah had with her one of her slave-girls, by name
Marsínah[FN#332]; so she called her and said to her, "By Allah, but
that I fear for the life of my father, who is his uncle's prisoner, I
would kill him! Allah never requite him with good! How unlucky was his
coming to us; for all this trouble is due to his hard- headedness! But
do thou, O slave-girl, bear him to the Thirsty Island and leave him
there to die of thirst." So Marsinah carried him to the island in
question and would have returned and left him there but she said in
herself, "By Allah, the lord of such beauty and loveliness deserveth
not to die of thirst!" So she went forth from that island and brought
him to another abounding in trees and fruits and rills and, setting him
down there, returned to her mistress and told her, "I have left him on
the Thirsty Island." Such was the case with Badr Basim; but as regards
King Salih he sought for Jauharah after capturing the King and killing
his folk; but, finding her not, returned to his palace and said to his
mother, "Where is my sister's son, King Badr Basim?" "By Allah, O my
son," replied she, "I know nothing of him! For when it reached him that
you and King Al-Samandal had come to blows and that strife and
slaughter had betided between you, he was affrighted and fled." When
Salih heard this, he grieved for his nephew and said, "O my mother, by
Allah, we have dealt negligently by King Badr and I fear lest he perish
or lest one of King Al- Samandal's soldiers or his daughter Jauharah
fall in with him. So should we come to shame with his mother and no
good betide us from her, for that I took him without her leave." Then
he despatched guards and scouts throughout the sea and elsewhere to
seek for Badr; but they could learn no tidings of him; so they returned
and told King Salih, wherefore cark and care redoubled on him and his
breast was straitened for King Badr Basim. So far concerning nephew and
uncle, but as for Julnar the Sea-born, after their departure she abode
in expectation of them, but her son returned not and she heard no
report of him. So when many days of fruitless waiting had gone by, she
arose and going down into the sea, repaired to her mother, who sighting
her rose to her and kissed her and embraced her, as did the Mermaids
her cousins. Then she questioned her mother of King Badr Basim, and she
answered, saying, "O my daughter, of a truth he came hither with his
uncle, who took jacinths and jewels and carrying them to King
Al-Samandal, demanded his daughter in marriage for thy son but he
consented not and was violent against thy brother in words. Now I had
sent Salih nigh upon a thousand horse and a battle befel between him
and King Al-Samandal; but Allah aided thy brother against him, and he
slew his guards and troops and took himself prisoner. Meanwhile,
tidings of this reached thy son, and it would seem as if he feared for
himself; wherefore he fled forth from us, without our will, and
returned not to us, nor have we heard any news of him." Then Julnar
enquired for King Salih, and his mother said, "He is seated on the
throne of his kingship, in the stead of King Al-Samandal, and hath sent
in all directions to seek thy son and Princess Jauharah." When Julnar
heard the maternal words, she mourned for her son with sad mourning and
was highly incensed against her brother Salih for that he had taken him
and gone down with him into the sea without her leave; and she said, "O
my mother, I fear for our realm; as I came to thee without letting any
know; and I dread tarrying with thee, lest the state fall into disorder
and the kingdom pass from our hands. Wherefore I deem best to return
and govern the reign till it please Allah to order our son's affair for
us. But look ye forget him not neither neglect his case; for should he
come to any harm, it would infallibly kill me, since I see not the
world save in him and delight but in his life." She replied, "With love
and gladness, O my daughter. Ask not what we suffer by reason of his
loss and absence." Then she sent to seek for her grandson, whilst
Julnar returned to her kingdom, weeping-eyed and heavy- hearted, and
indeed the gladness of the world was straitened upon her.—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Fiftieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Queen Juluar
returned from her mother to her own realm, her breast was straitened
and she was in ill-case. So fared it with her; but as regards King Badr
Basim, after Princess Jauharah had ensorcelled him and had sent him
with her handmaid to the Thirsty Island, saying, "Leave him there to
die of thirst," and Marsinah had set him down in a green islet, he
abode days and nights in the semblance of a bird eating of its fruits
and drinking of its waters and knowing not whither to go nor how to
fly; till, one day, there came a certain fowler to the island to catch
somewhat wherewithal to get his living. He espied King Badr Basim in
his form of a white-robed bird, with red bill and legs, captivating the
sight and bewildering the thought; and, looking thereat, said in
himself "Verily, yonder is a beautiful bird: never saw I its like in
fairness or form." So he cast his net over Badr and taking him, carried
him to the town, mentally resolved to sell him for a high price. On his
way one of the townsfolk accosted him and said, "For how much this
fowl, O fowler?" Quoth the fowler, "What wilt thou do with him an thou
buy him?" Answered the other, "I will cut his throat and eat him;"
whereupon said the birder, "Who could have the heart to kill this bird
and eat him? Verily, I mean to present him to our King, who will give
me more than thou wouldest give me and will not kill him, but will
divert himself by gazing upon his beauty and grace, for in all my life,
since I have been a fowler, I never saw his like among land game or
water fowl. The utmost thou wouldst give me for him, however much thou
covet him, would be a dirham, and, by Allah Almighty I will not sell
him!" Then he carried the bird up to the King's palace and when the
King saw it, its beauty and grace pleased him and the red colour of its
beak and legs. So he sent an eunuch to buy it, who accosted the fowler
and said to him, "Wilt thou sell this bird?" Answered he, "Nay, 'tis a
gift from me to the King.''[FN#333] So the eunuch carried the bird to
the King and told him what the man had said; and he took it and gave
the fowler ten dinars, whereupon he kissed ground and fared forth. Then
the eunuch carried the bird to the palace and placing him in a fine
cage, hung him up after setting meat and drink by him. When the King
came down from the Divan, he said to the eunuch, "Where is the bird?
Bring it to me, that I may look upon it; for, by Allah, 'tis
beautiful!" So the eunuch brought the cage and set it between the hands
of the King, who looked and seeing the food untouched, said, "By Allah,
I wis not what it will eat, that I may nourish it!" Then he called for
food and they laid the tables and the King ate. Now when the bird saw
the flesh and meats and fruits and sweet meats, he ate of all that was
upon the trays before the King, whereat the Sovran and all the
bystanders marvelled and the King said to his attendants, eunuchs and
Mamelukes, "In all my life I never saw a bird eat as doth this bird!"
Then he sent an eunuch to fetch his wife that she might enjoy looking
upon the bird, and he went in to summon her and said, "O my lady, the
King desireth thy presence, that thou mayst divert thyself with the
sight of a bird he hath bought. When we set on the food, it flew down
from its cage and perching on the table, ate of all that was thereon.
So arise, O my lady, and solace thee with the sight for it is goodly of
aspect and is a wonder of the wonders of the age." Hearing these words
she came in haste; but, when she noted the bird, she veiled her face
and turned to fare away. The King rose up and looking at her, asked,
"Why dost thou veil thy face when there is none in presence save the
women and eunuchs who wait on thee and thy husband?" Answered she, "O
King, this bird is no bird, but a man like thyself." He rejoined, "Thou
liest, this is too much of a jest. How should he be other than a
bird?"; and she "O King, by Allah, I do not jest with thee nor do I
tell thee aught but the truth; for verily this bird is King Badr Basim,
son of King Shahriman, Lord of the land of the Persians, and his mother
is Julnar the Sea-born."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
King's wife said to the King, "Verily, this is no bird but a man like
thyself: he is King Badr Basim son of King Shariman and his mother is
Julnar the Sea born," quoth the King, "And how came he in this shape?";
and quoth she, "Princess Jauharah, daughter of King Al-Samandal, hath
enchanted him:" and told him all that had passed with King Badr Basim
from first to last.[FN#334] The King marvelled exceedingly at his
wife's words and conjured her, on his life, to free Badr from his
enchantment (for she was the notablest enchantress of her age), and not
leave him in torment, saying, "May Almighty Allah cut off Jauharah's
hand, for a foul witch as she is! How little is her faith and how great
her craft and perfidy!" Said the Queen, "Do thou say to him, 'O Badr
Basim, enter yonder closet!'" So the King bade him enter the closet and
he went in obediently. Then the Queen veiled her face and taking in her
hand a cup of water,[FN#335] entered the closet where she pronounced
over the water certain incomprehensible words ending with, "By the
virtue of these mighty names and holy verses and by the majesty of
Allah Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, the Quickener of the dead
and Appointer of the means of daily bread and the terms determined,
quit this thy form wherein thou art and return to the shape in which
the Lord created thee!" Hardly had she made an end of her words, when
the bird trembled once and became a man; and the King saw before him a
handsome youth, than whom on earth's face was none goodlier. But when
King Badr Basim found himself thus restored to his own form he cried,
"There is no god but the God and Mohammed is the Apostle of God! Glory
be to the Creator of all creatures and Provider of their provision, and
Ordainer of their life terms preordained!" Then he kissed the King's
hand and wished him long life, and the King kissed his head and said to
him, "O Badr Basim, tell me thy history from commencement to
conclusion." So he told him his whole tale, concealing naught; and the
King marvelled thereat and said to him, "O Badr Basim, Allah hath saved
thee from the spell: but what hath thy judgment decided and what
thinkest thou to do?" Replied he, "O King of the Age, I desire thy
bounty that thou equip me a ship with a company of thy servants and all
that is needful; for 'tis long since I have been absent and I dread
lest the kingdom depart from me. And I misdoubt me my mother is dead of
grief for my loss; and this doubt is the stronger for that she knoweth
not what is come of me nor whether I am alive or dead. Wherefore, I
beseech thee, O King, to crown thy favours to me by granting me what I
seek." The King, after beholding the beauty and grace of Badr Basim and
listening to his sweet speech, said, "I hear and obey." So he fitted
him out a ship, to which he transported all that was needful and which
he manned with a company of his servants; and Badr Basim set sail in
it, after having taken leave of the King. They sailed over the sea ten
successive days with a favouring wind; but, on the eleventh day, the
ocean became troubled with exceeding trouble, the ship rose and fell
and the sailors were powerless to govern her. So they drifted at the
mercy of the waves, till the craft neared a rock in mid-sea which fell
upon her[FN#336] and broke her up and all on board were drowned, save
King Badr Basim who got astride one of the planks of the vessel, after
having been nigh upon destruction. The plank ceased not to be borne by
the set of the sea, whilst he knew not whither he went and had no means
of directing its motion, as the wind and waves wrought for three whole
days. But on the fourth the plank grounded with him on the sea-shore
where he sighted a white city, as it were a dove passing white, builded
upon a tongue of land that jutted out into the deep and it was goodly
of ordinance, with high towers and lofty walls against which the waves
beat. When Badr Basim saw this, he rejoiced with exceeding joy, for he
was well-nigh dead of hunger and thirst, and dismounting from the
plank, would have gone up the beach to the city; but there came down to
him mules and asses and horses, in number as the sea-sands and fell to
striking at him and staying him from landing. So he swam round to the
back of the city, where he waded to shore and entering the place, found
none therein and marvelled at this, saying, "Would I knew to whom doth
this city belong, wherein is no lord nor any liege, and whence came
these mules and asses and horses that hindered me from landing?" And he
mused over his case. Then he walked on at hazard till he espied an old
man, a grocer.[FN#337] So he saluted him and the other returned his
salam and seeing him to be a handsome young man, said to him, "O youth,
whence comest thou and what brought thee to this city?" Badr told him
his story; at which the old man marvelled and said, "O my son, didst
thou see any on thy way?" He replied, "Indeed, O my father, I wondered
in good sooth to sight a city void of folk." Quoth the Shaykh, "O my
son, come up into the shop, lest thou perish." So Badr Basim went up
into the shop and sat down; whereupon the old man set before him
somewhat of food, saying, "O my son, enter the inner shop; glory be to
Him who hath preserved thee from yonder she- Sathanas!" King Badr Basim
was sore affrighted at the grocer's words; but he ate his fill and
washed his hands; then glanced at his host and said to him, "O my lord,
what is the meaning of these words? Verily thou hast made me fearful of
this city and its folk." Replied the old man, "Know, O my son, that
this is the City of the Magicians and its Queen is as she were a
she-Satan, a sorceress and a mighty enchantress, passing crafty and
perfidious exceedingly. All thou sawest of horses and mules and asses
were once sons of Adam like thee and me; they were also strangers, for
whoever entereth this city, being a young man like thyself, this
miscreant witch taketh him and hometh him for forty days, after which
she enchanteth him, and he becometh a mule or a horse or an ass, of
those animals thou sawest on the sea-shore."—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the old grocer
related to King Badr Basim the history of the enchantress ending with,
"All these people hath she spelled; and, when it was thy intent to land
they feared lest thou be transmewed like themselves; so they counselled
thee by signs that said, 'Land not,' of their solicitude for thee,
fearing that haply she should do with thee like as she had done with
them. She possessed herself of this city and seized it from its
citizens by sorcery and her name is Queen Lab, which being interpreted,
meaneth in Arabic 'Almanac of the Sun.' "[FN#338] When Badr Basim heard
what the old man said, he was affrighted with sore affright and
trembled like reed in wind saying in himself, "Hardly do I feel me free
from the affliction wherein I was by reason of sorcery, when Destiny
casteth me into yet sorrier case!" And he fell a-musing over his
condition and that which had betided him. When the Shaykh looked at him
and saw the violence of his terror, he said to him, "O my son, come,
sit at the threshold of the shop and look upon yonder creatures and
upon their dress and complexion and that wherein they are by reason of
gramarye and dread not; for the Queen and all in the city love and
tender me and will not vex my heart or trouble my mind." So King Badr
Basim came out and sat at the shop-door, looking out upon the folk; and
there passed by him a world of creatures without number. But when the
people saw him, they accosted the grocer and said to him, "O elder, is
this thy captive and thy prey gotten in these days?" The old man
replied, "He is my brother's son, I heard that his father was dead; so
I sent for him and brought him here that I might quench with him the
fire of my home-sickness." Quoth they, "Verily, he is a comely youth;
but we fear for him from Queen Lab, lest she turn on thee with
treachery and take him from thee, for she loveth handsome young men."
Quoth the Shaykh, "The Queen will not gainsay my commandment, for she
loveth and tendereth me; and when she shall know that he is my
brother's son, she will not molest him or afflict me in him neither
trouble my heart on his account." Then King Badr Basim abode some
months with the grocer, eating and drinking, and the old man loved him
with exceeding love. One day, as he sat in the shop according to his
custom, behold, there came up a thousand eunuchs, with drawn swords and
clad in various kinds of raiment and girt with jewelled girdles: all
rode Arabian steeds and bore in baldrick Indian blades. They saluted
the grocer, as they passed his shop and were followed by a thousand
damsels like moons, clad in various raiments of silks and satins
fringed with gold and embroidered with jewels of sorts, and spears were
slung to their shoulders. In their midst rode a damsel mounted on a
Rabite mare, saddled with a saddle of gold set with various kinds of
jewels and jacinths; and they reached in a body the Shaykh's shop. The
damsels saluted him and passed on, till, lo and behold! up came Queen
Lab, in great state, and seeing King Badr Basim sitting in the shop, as
he were the moon at its full, was amazed at his beauty and loveliness
and became passionately enamoured of him, and distraught with desire of
him. So she alighted and sitting down by King Badr Basim said to the
old man, "Whence hadst thou this handsome one?"; and the Shaykh
replied, "He is my brother's son, and is lately come to me." Quoth Lab,
"Let him be with me this night, that I may talk with him;" and quoth
the old man, "Wilt thou take him from me and not enchant him?" Said
she, "Yes," and said he, "Swear to me." So she sware to him that she
would not do him any hurt or ensorcell him, and bidding bring him a
fine horse, saddled and bridled with a golden bridle and decked with
trappings all of gold set with jewels, gave the old man a thousand
dinars saying, "Use this."[FN#339] Then she took Badr Basim and carried
him off, as he were the full moon on its fourteenth night, whilst all
the folk, seeing his beauty, were grieved for him and said, "By Allah,
verily, this youth deserveth not to be bewitched by yonder sorceress,
the accursed!" Now King Badr Basim heard all they said, but was silent,
committing his case to Allah Almighty, till they came to—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that King Badr
Basim ceased not faring with Queen Lab and her suite till they came to
her palace-gate, where the Emirs and eunuchs and Lords of the realm
took foot and she bade the Chamberlains dismiss her Officers and
Grandees, who kissed ground and went away, whilst she entered the
palace with Badr Basim and her eunuchs and women. Here he found a
place, whose like he had never seen at all, for it was builded of gold
and in its midst was a great basin brimfull of water midmost a vast
flower- garden. He looked at the garden and saw it abounding in birds
of various kinds and colours, warbling in all manner tongues and
voices, pleasurable and plaintive. And everywhere he beheld great state
and dominion and said, "Glory be to God, who of His bounty and
long-suffering provideth those who serve other than Himself!" The Queen
sat down at a latticed window overlooking the garden on a couch of
ivory, whereon was a high bed, and King Badr Basim seated himself by
her side. She kissed him and pressing him to her breast, bade her women
bring a tray of food. So they brought a tray of red gold, inlaid with
pearls and jewels and spread with all manner of viands and he and she
ate, till they were satisfied, and washed their hands; after which the
waiting-women set on flagons of gold and silver and glass, together
with all kinds of flowers and dishes of dried fruits. Then the Queen
summoned the singing-women and there came ten maidens, as they were
moons, hending all manner of musical instruments. Queen Lab crowned a
cup and drinking it off, filled another and passed it to King Badr
Basim, who took it and drank; and they ceased not to drink till they
had their sufficiency. Then she bade the damsels sing, and they sang
all manner modes till it seemed to Badr Basim as if the palace danced
with him for joy. His sense was ecstasied and his breast broadened, and
he forgot his strangerhood and said in himself, "Verily, this Queen is
young and beautiful[FN#340] and I will never leave her; for her kingdom
is vaster than my kingdom and she is fairer than Princess Jauharah." So
he ceased not to drink with her till even-tide came, when they lighted
the lamps and waxen candles and diffused censer-perfumes; nor did they
leave drinking, till they were both drunken, and the singing-women sang
the while. Then Queen Lab, being in liquor, rose from her seat and lay
down on a bed and dismissing her women called to Badr Basim to come and
sleep by her side. So he lay with her, in all delight of life till the
morning.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her
permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Queen
awoke she repaired to the Hammam-bath in the palace, King Badr Basim
being with her, and they bathed and were purified; after which she clad
him in the finest of raiment and called for the service of wine. So the
waiting women brought the drinking-gear and they drank. Presently, the
Queen arose and taking Badr Basim by the hand, sat down with him on
chairs and bade bring food, whereof they ate, and washed their hands.
Then the damsels fetched the drinking gear and fruits and flowers and
confections, and they ceased not to eat and drink,[FN#341] whilst the
singing-girls sang various airs till the evening. They gave not over
eating and drinking and merry- making for a space of forty days, when
the Queen said to him, "O Badr Basim, say me whether is the more
pleasant, this place or the shop of thine uncle the grocer?" He
replied, "By Allah, O Queen, this is the pleasanter, for my uncle is
but a beggarly man, who vendeth pot-herbs." She laughed at his words
and the twain lay together in the pleasantest of case till the morning,
when King Badr Basim awoke from sleep and found not Queen Lab by his
side, so he said, "Would Heaven I knew where can she have gone!" And
indeed he was troubled at her absence and perplexed about the case, for
she stayed away from him a great while and did not return; so he donned
his dress and went seeking her but not finding her, and he said to
himself, "Haply, she is gone to the flower-garden." Thereupon he went
out into the garden and came to a running rill beside which he saw a
white she-bird and on the stream-bank a tree full of birds of various
colours, and he stood and watched the birds without their seeing him.
And behold, a black bird flew down upon that white-she bird and fell to
billing her pigeon- fashion, then he leapt on her and trod her three
consecutive times, after which the bird changed and became a woman.
Badr looked at her and lo! it was Queen Lab. So he knew that the black
bird was a man transmewed and that she was enamoured of him and had
transformed herself into a bird, that he might enjoy her; wherefore
jealousy got hold upon him and he was wroth with the Queen because of
the black bird. Then he returned to his place and lay down on the
carpet-bed and after an hour or so she came back to him and fell to
kissing him and jesting with him; but being sore incensed against her
he answered her not a word. She saw what was to do with him and was
assured that he had witnessed what befel her when she was a white bird
and was trodden by the black bird; yet she discovered naught to him but
concealed what ailed her. When he had done her need, he said to her, "O
Queen, I would have thee give me leave to go to my uncle's shop, for I
long after him and have not seen him these forty days." She replied,
"Go to him but tarry not from me, for I cannot brook to be parted from
thee, nor can I endure without thee an hour." He said, "I hear and I
obey," and mounting, rode to the shop of the Shaykh, the grocer, who
welcomed him and rose to him and embracing him said to him, "How hast
thou fared with yonder idolatress?" He replied, "I was well in health
and happiness till this last night," and told him what had passed in
the garden with the black bird.[FN#342] Now when the old man heard his
words, he said, "Beware of her, for know that the birds upon the tree
were all young men and strangers, whom she loved and enchanted and
turned into birds. That black bird thou sawest was one of her Mamelukes
whom she loved with exceeding love, till he cast his eyes upon one of
her women, wherefore she changed him into a black bird";—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Badr
Basim acquainted the old grocer with all the doings of Queen Lab and
what he had seen of her proceedings, the Shaykh gave him to know that
all the birds upon the tree were young men and strangers whom she had
enchanted, and that the black bird was one of her Mamelukes whom she
had transmewed. "And," continued the Shaykh, "whenas she lusteth after
him she transformeth herself into a she-bird that he may enjoy her, for
she still loveth him with passionate love. When she found that thou
knewest of her case, she plotted evil against thee, for she loveth thee
not wholly. But no harm shall betide thee from her, so long as I
protect thee; therefore fear nothing; for I am a Moslem, by name
Abdallah, and there is none in my day more magical than I; yet do I not
make use of gramarye save upon constraint. Many a time have I put to
naught the sorceries of yonder accursed and delivered folk from her,
and I care not for her, because she can do me no hurt: nay, she feareth
me with exceeding fear, as do all in the city who, like her, are
magicians and serve the fire, not the Omnipotent Sire. So to-morrow,
come thou to me and tell me what she doth with thee; for this very
night she will cast about to destroy thee, and I will tell thee how
thou shalt do with her, that thou mayst save thyself from her malice."
Then King Badr Basim farewelled the Shaykh and returned to the Queen
whom he found awaiting him. When she saw him, she rose and seating him
and welcoming him brought him meat and drink and the two ate till they
had enough and washed their hands; after which she called for wine and
they drank till the night was well nigh half spent, when she plied him
with cup after cup till he was drunken and lost sense[FN#343] and wit.
When she saw him thus, she said to him, "I conjure thee by Allah and by
whatso thou worshippest, if I ask thee a question wilt thou inform me
rightly and answer me truly?" And he being drunken, answered, "Yes, O
my lady." Quoth she, "O my lord and light of mine eyes, when thou
awokest last night and foundest me not, thou soughtest me, till thou
sawest me in the garden, under the guise of a white she-bird, and also
thou sawest the black bird leap on me and tread me. Now I will tell the
truth of this matter. That black bird was one of my Mamelukes, whom I
loved with exceeding love; but one day he cast his eyes upon a certain
of my slave-girls, wherefore jealousy gat hold upon me and I
transformed him by my spells into a black bird and her I slew. But now
I cannot endure without him a single hour; so, whenever I lust after
him, I change myself into a she- bird and go to him, that he may leap
me and enjoy me, even as thou hast seen. Art thou not therefore
incensed against me, because of this, albeit by the virtue of Fire and
Light, Shade and Heat, I love thee more than ever and have made thee my
portion of the world?" He answered (being drunken), "Thy conjecture of
the cause of my rage is correct, and it had no reason other than this."
With this she embraced him and kissed him and made great show of love
to him; then she lay down to sleep and he by her side. Presently about
midnight she rose from the carpet-bed and King Badr Basim was awake;
but he feigned sleep and watched stealthily to see what she would do.
She took out of a red bag a something red, which she planted
a-middlemost the chamber, and it became a stream, running like the sea;
after which she took a handful of barley and strewing it on the ground,
watered it with water from the river; whereupon it became wheat in the
ear, and she gathered it and ground it into flour. Then she set it
aside and returning to bed, lay down by Badr Basim till morning when he
arose and washed his face and asked her leave to visit the Shaykh his
uncle. She gave him permission and he repaired to Abdallah and told him
what had passed. The old man laughed and said, "By Allah, this
miscreant witch plotteth mischief against thee; but reck thou not of
her ever!" Then he gave him a pound of parched corn[FN#344] and said to
him, "Take this with thee and know that, when she seeth it, she will
ask thee, 'What is this and what wilt thou do with it?' Do thou answer,
'Abundance of good things is good'; and eat of it. Then will she bring
forth to thee parched grain of her own and say to thee, 'Eat of this
Sawík; and do thou feign to her that thou eatest thereof, but eat of
this instead, and beware and have a care lest thou eat of hers even a
grain; for, an thou eat so much as a grain thereof, her spells will
have power over thee and she will enchant thee and say to thee, 'Leave
this form of a man.' Whereupon thou wilt quit thine own shape for what
shape she will. But, an thou eat not thereof, her enchantments will be
null and void and no harm will betide thee therefrom; whereat she will
be shamed with shame exceeding and say to thee, 'I did but jest with
thee!' Then will she make a show of love and fondness to thee; but this
will all be but hypocrisy in her and craft. And do thou also make a
show of love to her and say to her, 'O my lady and light of mine eyes,
eat of this parched barley and see how delicious it is.' And if she eat
thereof, though it be but a grain, take water in thy hand and throw it
in her face, saying, 'Quit this human form' (for what form soever thou
wilt have her take). Then leave her and come to me and I will counsel
thee what to do." So Badr Basim took leave of him and returning to the
palace, went in to the Queen, who said to him, "Welcome and well come
and good cheer to thee!" And she rose and kissed him, saying, "Thou
hast tarried long from me, O my lord." He replied, "I have been with my
uncle, and he gave me to eat of this Sawik." Quoth she, "We have better
than that." Then she laid his parched Sawik in one plate and hers in
another and said to him, "Eat of this, for 'tis better than thine." So
he feigned to eat of it and when she thought he had done so, she took
water in her hand and sprinkled him therewith, saying, "Quit this form,
O thou gallows- bird, thou miserable, and take that of a mule one- eyed
and foul of favour." But he changed not; which when she saw, she arose
and went up to him and kissed him between the eyes, saying, "O my
beloved, I did but jest with thee; bear me no malice because of this."
Quoth he, "O my lady, I bear thee no whit of malice; nay, I am assured
that thou lovest me: but eat of this my parched barley." So she ate a
mouthful of Abdallah's Sawik; but no sooner had it settled in her
stomach than she was convulsed; and King Badr Basim took water in his
palm and threw it in her face, saying, "Quit this human form and take
that of a dapple mule." No sooner had he spoken than she found herself
changed into a she-mule, whereupon the tears rolled down her cheeks and
she fell to rubbing her muzzle against his feet. Then he would have
bridled her, but she would not take the bit; so he left her and, going
to the grocer, told him what had passed. Abdallah brought out for him a
bridle and bade him rein her forthwith. So he took it to the palace,
and when she saw him, she came up to him and he set the bit in her
mouth and mounting her, rode forth to find the Shaykh. But when the old
man saw her, he rose and said to her, "Almighty Allah confound thee, O
accursed woman!" Then quoth he to Badr, "O my son, there is no more
tarrying for thee in this city; so ride her and fare with her whither
thou wilt and beware lest thou commit the bridle[FN#345] to any." King
Badr thanked him and farewelling him, fared on three days, without
ceasing, till he drew near another city and there met him an old man,
gray headed and comely, who said to him, "Whence comest thou, O my
son?" Badr replied, "From the city of this witch"; and the old man
said, "Thou art my guest to-night." He consented and went with him; but
by the way behold, they met an old woman, who wept when she saw the
mule, and said, "There is no god but the God! Verily, this mule
resembleth my son's she-mule, which is dead, and my heart acheth for
her; so, Allah upon thee, O my lord, do thou sell her to me!" He
replied, "By Allah, O my mother, I cannot sell her." But she cried,
"Allah upon thee, do not refuse my request, for my son will surely be a
dead man except I buy him this mule." And she importuned him, till he
exclaimed, "I will not sell her save for a thousand dinars," saying in
himself, "Whence should this old woman get a thousand gold pieces?"
Thereupon she brought out from her girdle a purse containing a thousand
ducats, which when King Badr Basim saw, he said, "O my mother, I did
but jest with thee; I cannot sell her." But the old man looked at him
and said, "O my son, in this city none may lie, for whoso lieth they
put to death." So King Badr Basim lighted down from the mule.—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Badr
Basim dismounted from and delivered the mule to the old woman, she drew
the bit from her mouth and, taking water in her hand, sprinkled the
mule therewith, saying, "O my daughter, quit this shape for that form
wherein thou wast aforetime!" Upon this she was straightway restored to
her original semblance and the two women embraced and kissed each
other. So King Badr Basim knew that the old woman was Queen Lab's
mother and that he had been tricked and would have fled; when, lo! the
old woman whistled a loud whistle and her call was obeyed by an Ifrit
as he were a great mountain, whereat Badr was affrighted and stood
still. Then the old woman mounted on the Ifrit's back, taking her
daughter behind her and King Badr Basim before her, and the Ifrit flew
off with them; nor was it a full hour ere they were in the palace of
Queen Lab, who sat down on the throne of kingship and said to Badr,
"Gallows-bird that thou art, now am I come hither and have attained to
that I desired and soon will I show thee how I will do with thee and
with yonder old man the grocer! How many favours have I shown him! Yet
he doth me frowardness; for thou hast not attained thine end but by
means of him." Then she took water and sprinkled him therewith, saying,
"Quit the shape wherein thou art for the form of a foul-favoured fowl,
the foulest of all fowls"; and she set him in a cage and cut off from
him meat and drink; but one of her women seeing this cruelty, took
compassion on him and gave him food and water without her knowledge.
One day, the damsel took her mistress at unawares and going forth the
palace, repaired to the old grocer, to whom she told the whole case,
saying, "Queen Lab is minded to make an end of thy brother's son." The
Shaykh thanked her and said, "There is no help but that I take the city
from her and make thee Queen thereof in her stead." Then he whistled a
loud whistle and there came forth to him an Ifrit with four wings, to
whom he said, "Take up this damsel and carry her to the city of Julnar
the Sea-born and her mother Faráshah[FN#346] for they twain are the
most powerful magicians on face of earth." And he said to the damsel,
"When thou comest thither, tell them that King Badr Basim is Queen
Lab's captive." Then the Ifrit took up his load and, flying off with
her, in a little while set her down upon the terrace roof of Queen
Julnar's palace. So she descended and going in to the Queen, kissed the
earth and told her what had passed to her son, first and last,
whereupon Julnar rose to her and entreated her with honour and thanked
her. Then she let beat the drums in the city and acquainted her lieges
and the lords of her realm with the good news that King Badr Basim was
found; after which she and her mother Farashah and her brother Salih
assembled all the tribes of the Jinn and the troops of the main; for
the Kings of the Jinn obeyed them since the taking of King Al-Samandal.
Presently they all flew up into the air and lighting down on the city
of the sorceress, sacked the town and the palace and slew all the
Unbelievers therein in the twinkling of an eye. Then said Julnar to the
damsel, "Where is my son?" And the slave-girl brought her the cage and
signing to the bird within, cried, "This is thy son." So Julnar took
him forth of the cage and sprinkled him with water, saying, "Quit this
shape for the form wherein thou wast aforetime;" nor had she made an
end of her speech ere he shook and became a man as before: whereupon
his mother, seeing him restored to human shape, embraced him and he
wept with sore weeping. On like wise did his uncle Salih and his
grandmother and the daughters of his uncle and fell to kissing his
hands and feet. Then Julnar sent for Shaykh Abdallah and thanking him
for his kind dealing with her son, married him to the damsel, whom he
had despatched to her with news of him, and made him King of the city.
Moreover, she summoned those who survived of the citizens (and they
were Moslems), and made them swear fealty to him and take the oath of
loyalty, whereto they replied, "Hearkening and obedience!" Then she and
her company farewelled him and returned to their own capital. The
townsfolk came out to meet them, with drums beating, and decorated the
place three days and held high festival, of the greatness of their joy
for the return of their King Badr Basim. After this Badr said to his
mother, "O my mother, naught remains but that I marry and we be all
united." She replied, "Right is thy rede, O my son, but wait till we
ask who befitteth thee among the daughters of the Kings." And his
grandmother Farashah, and the daughters of both his uncles said, "O
Badr Basim, we will help thee to win thy wish forthright." Then each of
them arose and fared forth questing in the lands, whilst Julnar sent
out her waiting women on the necks of Ifrits, bidding them leave not a
city nor a King's palace without noting all the handsome girls that
were therein. But, when King Badr Basim saw the trouble they were
taking in this matter, he said to Julnar, "O my mother, leave this
thing, for none will content me save Jauharah, daughter of King
Al-Samandal; for that she is indeed a jewel,[FN#347] according to her
name." Replied Julnar, "I know that which thou seekest;" and bade
forthright bring Al-Samandal the King. As soon as he was present, she
sent for Badr Basim and acquainted him with the King's coming,
whereupon he went in to him. Now when Al-Samandal was aware of his
presence, he rose to him and saluted him and bade him welcome; and King
Badr Basim demanded of him his daughter Jauharah in marriage. Quoth he,
"She is thine handmaid and at thy service and disposition," and
despatched some of his suite bidding them seek her abode and, after
telling her that her sire was in the hands of King Badr Basim, to bring
her forthright. So they flew up into the air and disappeared and they
returned after a while, with the Princess who, as soon as she saw her
father, went up to him and threw her arms round his neck. Then looking
at her he said, "O my daughter, know that I have given thee in wedlock
to this magnanimous Sovran, and valiant lion King Badr Basim, son of
Queen Julnar the Sea-born, for that he is the goodliest of the folk of
his day and most powerful and the most exalted of them in degree and
the noblest in rank; he befitteth none but thee and thou none but him."
Answered she, "I may not gainsay thee, O my sire do as thou wilt, for
indeed chagrin and despite are at an end, and I am one of his
handmaids." So they summoned the Kazi and the witnesses who drew up the
marriage-contract between King Badr Basim and the Princess Jauharah,
and the citizens decorated the city and beat the drums of rejoicing,
and they released all who were in the jails, whilst the King clothed
the widows and the orphans and bestowed robes of honour upon the Lords
of the Realm and Emirs and Grandees: and they made bride-feasts and
held high festival night and morn ten days, at the end of which time
they displayed the bride, in nine different dresses, before King Badr
Basim who bestowed an honourable robe upon King Al- Samandal and sent
him back to his country and people and kinsfolk. And they ceased not
from living the most delectable of life and the most solaceful of days,
eating and drinking and enjoying every luxury, till there came to them
the Destroyer of delights and the Sunderer of Societies; and this is
the end of their story[FN#348], may Allah have mercy on them all!
Moreover, O auspicious King, a tale is also told anent


There was once, in days of yore and in ages and times long gone before,
a King of the Kings of the Persians, by name Mohammed bin Sabáik, who
ruled over Khorásán-land and used every year to go on razzia into the
countries of the Miscreants in Hind and Sind and China and the lands of
Máwarannahr beyond the Oxus and other regions of the barbarians and
what not else. He was a just King, a valiant and a generous, and loved
table-talk[FN#349] and tales and verses and anecdotes and histories and
entertaining stories and legends of the ancients. Whoso knew a rare
recital and related it to him in such fashion as to please him he would
bestow on him a sumptuous robe of honour and clothe him from head to
foot and give him a thousand dinars, and mount him on a horse saddled
and bridled besides other great gifts; and the man would take all this
and wend his way. Now it chanced that one day there came an old man
before him and related to him a rare story, which pleased the King and
made him marvel, so he ordered him a magnificent present, amongst other
things a thousand dinars of Khorasan and a horse with its housings and
trappings. After this, the bruit of the King's munificence was blazed
abroad in all countries and there heard of him a man, Hasan the
Merchant hight, who was a generous, open-handed and learned, a scholar
and an accomplished poet. Now the King had an envious Wazir, a
multum-in-parvo of ill, loving no man, rich nor poor, and whoso came
before the King and he gave him aught he envied him and said, "Verily,
this fashion annihilateth wealth and ruineth the land; and such is the
custom of the King." But this was naught save envy and despite in that
Minister. Presently the King heard talk of Hasan the Merchant and
sending for him, said to him as soon as he came into the presence, "O
Merchant Hasan, this Wazir of mine vexeth and thwarteth me concerning
the money I give to poets and boon-companions and story-tellers and
glee-men, and I would have thee tell me a goodly history and a rare
story, such as I have never before heard. An it please me, I will give
thee lands galore, with their forts, in free tenure, in addition to thy
fiefs and untaxed lands; besides which I will put my whole kingdom in
thy hands and make thee my Chief Wazir; so shalt thou sit on my right
hand and rule my subjects. But, an thou bring me not that which I bid
thee, I will take all that is in thy hand and banish thee my realm."
Replied Hasan, "Hearkening and obedience to our lord the King! But thy
slave beseecheth thee to have patience with him a year; then will he
tell thee a tale, such as thou hast never in thy life heard, neither
hath other than thou heard its like, not to say a better than it."
Quoth the King, "I grant thee a whole year's delay." And he called for
a costly robe of honour wherein he robed Hasan, saying, "Keep thy house
and mount not horse, neither go nor come for a year's time, till thou
bring me that I seek of thee. An thou bring it, especial favour
awaiteth thee and thou mayst count upon that which I have promised
thee; but an thou bring it not, thou art not of us nor are we of
thee."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her
permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when King
Mohammed son of Sabaik said to Hasan the Merchant, "An thou bring me
that I seek of thee, especial favour awaiteth thee and thou mayest now
rejoice in that which I have promised thee; but, an thou bring it not,
thou art not of us nor are we of thee." Hasan kissed ground before the
King and went out from the presence. Then he chose five of the best of
his Mamelukes, who could all write and read and were learned,
intelligent, accomplished; and he gave each of them five thousand
dinars, saying, "I reared you not save for the like of this day; so do
ye help me to further the King's desire and deliver me from his hand."
Quoth they, "What wilt thou have us do? Our lives be thy ransom!" Quoth
he, "I wish you to go each to a different country and seek out
diligently the learned and erudite and literate and the tellers of
wondrous stories and marvellous histories and do your endeavour to
procure me the story of Sayf al-Mulúk. If ye find it with any one, pay
him what price soever he asketh for it although he demand a thousand
dinars; give him what ye may and promise him the rest and bring me the
story; for whoso happeneth on it and bringeth it to me, I will bestow
on him a costly robe of honour and largesse galore, and there shall be
to me none more worshipped than he." Then said he to one of them, "Hie
thou to Al-Hind and Al-Sind and all their provinces and dependencies."
To another, "Hie thou to the home of the Persians and to China and her
climates." To the third, "Hie thou to the land of Khorasan with its
districts." To the fourth, "Hie thou to Mauritania and all its regions,
districts, provinces and quarters." And to the fifth, "Hie thou to
Syria and Egypt and their outliers." Moreover, he chose them out an
auspicious day and said to them, "Fare ye forth this day and be
diligent in the accomplishment of my need and be not slothful, though
the case cost you your lives." So they farewelled him and departed,
each taking the direction perscribed to him. Now, four of them were
absent four months, and searched but found nothing; so they returned
and told their master, whose breast was straitened, that they had
ransacked towns and cities and countries for the thing he sought, but
had happened upon naught thereof. Meanwhile, the fifth servant
journeyed till he came to the land of Syria and entered Damascus, which
he found a pleasant city and a secure, abounding in trees and rills,
leas and fruiteries and birds chanting the praises of Allah the One,
the All-powerful of sway, Creator of Night and Day. Here he tarried
some time, asking for his master's desire, but none answered him,
wherefore he was on the point of departing thence to another place,
when he met a young man running and stumbling over his skirts. So he
asked of him, "Wherefore runnest thou in such eagerness and whither
dost thou press?" And he answered, "There is an elder here, a man of
learning, who every day at this time taketh his seat on a stool[FN#350]
and relateth tales and stories and delectable anecdotes, whereof never
heard any the like; and I am running to get me a place near him and
fear I shall find no room, because of the much folk." Quoth the
Mameluke, "Take me with thee;" and quoth the youth, "Make haste in thy
walking." So he shut his door and hastened with him to the place of
recitation, where he saw an old man of bright favour seated on a stool
holding forth to the folk. He sat down near him and addressed himself
to hear his story, till the going down of the sun, when the old man
made an end of his tale and the people, having heard it all, dispersed
from about him; whereupon the Mameluke accosted him and saluted him,
and he returned his salam and greeted him with the utmost worship and
courtesy. Then said the messenger to him, "O my lord Shaykh, thou art a
comely and reverend man, and thy discourse is goodly; but I would fain
ask thee of somewhat." Replied the old man, "Ask of what thou wilt!"
Then said the Mameluke, "Hast thou the story of Sayf al-Muluk and
Badí­'a al-Jamál?" Rejoined the elder, "And who told thee of this story
and informed thee thereof?" Answered the messenger, "None told me of
it, but I am come from a far country, in quest of this tale, and I will
pay thee whatever thou askest for its price if thou have it and wilt,
of thy bounty and charity, impart it to me and make it an alms to me,
of the generosity of thy nature for, had I my life in my hand and
lavished it upon thee for this thing, yet were it pleasing to my
heart." Replied the old man, "Be of good cheer and keep thine eye cool
and clear: thou shalt have it; but this is no story that one telleth in
the beaten highway, nor do I give it to every one." Cried the other,
"By Allah, O my lord, do not grudge it me, but ask of me what price
thou wilt." And the old man, "If thou wish for the history give me an
hundred dinars and thou shalt have it; but upon five conditions." Now
when the Mameluke knew that the old man had the story and was willing
to sell it to him, he joyed with exceeding joy and said, "I will give
thee the hundred dinars by way of price and ten to boot as a gratuity
and take it on the conditions of which thou speakest." Said the old
man, "Then go and fetch the gold pieces, and take that thou seekest."
So the messenger kissed his hands and joyful and happy returned to his
lodging, where he laid an hundred and ten dinars[FN#351] in a purse he
had by him. As soon as morning morrowed, he donned his clothes and
taking the dinars, repaired to the story-teller, whom he found seated
at the door of his house. So he saluted him and the other returned his
salam. Then he gave him the gold and the old man took it and carrying
the messenger into his house made him sit down in a convenient place,
when he set before him ink-case and reed-pen and paper and giving him a
book, said to him, "Write out what thou seekest of the
night-story[FN#352] of Sayf al-Muluk from this book." Accordingly the
Mameluke fell to work and wrote till he had made an end of his copy,
when he read it to the old man, and he corrected it and presently said
to him, "Know, O my son, that my five conditions are as follows;
firstly, that thou tell not this story in the beaten high road nor
before women and slave-girls nor to black slaves nor feather-heads; nor
again to boys; but read it only before Kings and Emirs and Wazirs and
men of learning, such as expounders of the Koran and others." Thereupon
the messenger accepted the conditions and kissing the old man's hand,
took leave of him, and fared forth.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the
Mameluke of Hasan the Merchant had copied the tale out of the book
belonging to the old man of Damascus, and had accepted his conditions
and farewelled him, he fared forth on the same day, glad and joyful,
and journeyed on diligently, of the excess of his contentment, for that
he had gotten the story of Sayf al-Muluk, till he came to his own
country, when he despatched his servant to bear the good news to his
master and say to him, "Thy Mameluke is come back in safety and hath
won his will and his aim." (Now of the term appointed between Hasan and
the King there wanted but ten days.) Then, after taking rest in his own
quarters he himself went in to the Merchant and told him all that had
befallen him and gave him the book containing the story of Sayf
al-Muluk and Badi'a al-Jamal, when Hasan joyed with exceeding joy at
the sight and bestowed on him all the clothes he had on and gave him
ten thoroughbred horses and the like number of camels and mules and
three negro chattels and two white slaves. Then Hasan took the book and
copied out the story plainly in his own hand; after which he presented
himself before the King and said to him, "O thou auspicious King, I
have brought thee a night-story and a rarely pleasant relation, whose
like none ever heard at all." When these words reached the King's ear,
he sent forthright for all the Emirs, who were men of understanding,
and all the learned doctors and folk of erudition and culture and poets
and wits; and Hasan sat down and read the history before the King, who
marvelled thereat and approved it, as did all who were present, and
they showered gold and silver and jewels upon the Merchant. Moreover,
the King bestowed on him a costly robe of honour of the richest of his
raiment and gave him a great city with its castles and outliers; and he
appointed him one of his Chief Wazirs and seated him on his right hand.
Then he caused the scribes write the story in letters of gold and lay
it up in his privy treasures: and whenever his breast was straitened,
he would summon Hasan and he would read him the story,[FN#353] which
was as follows:—

Story of Prince Sayf al-Muluk and the Princess Badi'a al-Jamal.

There was once, in days of old and in ages and times long told, a King
in Egypt called Asim bin Safwán,[FN#354] who was a liberal and
beneficent sovran, venerable and majestic. He owned many cities and
sconces and fortresses and troops and warriors and had a Wazir named
Fáris bin Sálih,[FN#355] and he and all his subjects worshipped the sun
and the fire, instead of the All-powerful Sire, the Glorious, the
Victorious. Now this King was become a very old man, weakened and
wasted with age and sickness and decrepitude; for he had lived an
hundred and fourscore years and had no child, male or female, by reason
whereof he was ever in cark and care from morning to night and from
night to morn. It so happened that one day of the days, he was sitting
on the throne of his Kingship, with his Emirs and Wazirs and Captains
and Grandees in attendance on him, according to their custom, in their
several stations, and whenever there came in an Emir, who had with him
a son or two sons, or haply three who stood at the sides of their sires
the King envied him and said in himself, "Every one of these is happy
and rejoiceth in his children, whilst I, I have no child, and to-morrow
I die and leave my reign and throne and lands and hoards, and strangers
will take them and none will bear me in memory nor will there remain
any mention of me in the world." Then he became drowned in the sea of
thought and for the much thronging of griefs and anxieties upon his
heart, like travellers faring for the well, he shed tears and
descending from his throne, sat down upon the floor,[FN#356] weeping
and humbling himself before the Lord. Now when the Wazir and notables
of the realm and others who were present in the assembly saw him do
thus with his royal person, they feared for their lives and let the
poursuivants cry aloud to the lieges, saying, "Hie ye to your homes and
rest till the King recover from what aileth him." So they went away,
leaving none in the presence save the Minister who, as soon as the King
came to himself, kissed ground between his hands and said, "O King of
the Age and the Time, wherefore this weeping and wailing? Tell me who
hath transgressed against thee of the Kings or Castellans or Emirs or
Grandees, and inform me who hath thwarted thee, O my liege lord, that
we may all fall on him and tear his soul from his two sides." But he
spake not neither raised his head; whereupon the Minister kissed ground
before him a second time and said to him, "O Master,[FN#357] I am even
as thy son and thy slave, nay, I have reared thee; yet know I not the
cause of thy cark and chagrin and of this thy case; and who should know
but I who should stand in my stead between thy hands? Tell me therefore
why this weeping and wherefore thine affliction." Nevertheless, the
King neither opened his mouth nor raised his head, but ceased not to
weep and cry with a loud crying and lament with exceeding lamentation
and ejaculate, "Alas!" The Wazir took patience with him awhile, after
which he said to him, "Except thou tell me the cause of this thine
affliction, I will set this sword to my heart and will slay myself
before thine eyes, rather than see thee thus distressed." Then King
Asim raised his head and, wiping away his tears, said, "O Minister of
good counsel and experience, leave me to my care and my chagrin, for
that which is in my heart of sorrow sufficeth me." But Faris said,
"Tell me, O King, the cause of this thy weeping, haply Allah will
appoint thee relief at my hands."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of
day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the Wazir said
to King Asim, "Tell me the cause of this thy weeping: haply Allah shall
appoint thee relief at my hands." Replied the King, "O Wazir, I weep
not for monies nor horses nor kingdoms nor aught else, but that I am
become an old man, yea, very old, nigh upon an hundred and fourscore
years of age, and I have not been blessed with a child, male or female;
so, when I die, they will bury me and my trace will be effaced and my
name cut off; the stranger will take my throne and reign and none will
ever make mention of my being." Rejoined the Minister Faris, "O King of
the Age, I am older than thou by an hundred years yet have I never been
blest with boon of child and cease not day and night from cark and care
and concern; so how shall we do, I and thou?" Quoth Asim, "O Wazir,
hast thou no device or shift in this matter?" and quoth the Minister,
"Know, O King that I have heard of a Sovran in the land of Sabá[FN#358]
by name Solomon David-son (upon the twain be the Peace!),[FN#359] who
pretendeth to prophetship and avoucheth that he hath a mighty Lord who
can do all things and whose kingdom is in the Heavens and who hath
dominion over all mankind and birds and beasts and over the wind and
the Jinn. Moreover, he kenneth the speech of birds and the language of
every other created thing; and withal, he calleth all creatures to the
worship of his Lord and discourseth to them of their service. So let us
send him a messenger in the King's name and seek of him our need,
beseeching him to put up prayer to his Lord, that He vouchsafe each of
us boon of issue. If his Faith be soothfast and his Lord Omnipotent, He
will assuredly bless each of us with a child male or female, and if the
thing thus fall out, we will enter his faith and worship his Lord; else
will we take patience and devise us another device." The King cried,
"This is well seen, and my breast is braodened by this thy speech; but
where shall we find a messenger befitting this grave matter, for that
this Solomon is no Kinglet and the approaching him is no light affair?
Indeed, I will send him none, on the like of this matter, save thyself;
for thou art ancient and versed in all manner affairs and the like of
thee is the like of myself; wherefore I desire that thou weary thyself
and journey to him and occupy thyself sedulously with accomplishing
this matter, so haply solace may be at thy hand." The Minister said, "I
hear and I obey; but rise thou forthwith and seat thee upon the throne,
so the Emirs and Lords of the realm and officers and the lieges may
enter applying themselves to thy service, according to their custom;
for they all went away from thee, troubled at heart on thine account.
Then will I go out and set forth on the Sovran's errand." So the King
arose forthright and sat down on the throne of his kingship, whilst the
Wazir went out and said to the Chamberlain, "Bid the folk proceed to
their service, as of their wont." Accordingly the troops and Captains
and Lords of the land entered, after they had spread the tables and ate
and drank and withdrew as was their wont, after which the Wazir Faris
went forth from King Asim and, repairing to his own house, equipped
himself for travel and returned to the King, who opened to him the
treasuries and provided him with rarities and things of price and rich
stuffs and gear without compare, such as nor Emir nor Wazir hath power
to possess. Moreover, King Asim charged him to accost Solomon with
reverence, foregoing him with the salam, but not exceeding in speech;
"and (continued he) then do thou ask of him thy need, and if he say
'tis granted, return to us in haste, for I shall be awaiting thee."
Accordingly, the Minister kissed hands and took the presents and
setting out, fared on night and day, till he came within fifteen days'
journey of Saba. Meanwhile Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) inspired
Solomon the son of David (the Peace be upon both!) and said to him, "O
Solomon, the King of Egypt sendeth unto thee his Chief Wazir, with a
present of rarities and such and such things of price; so do thou also
despatch thy Counsellor Asaf bin Barkhiyá to meet him with honour and
with victual at the halting-places; and when he cometh to thy presence,
say unto him, 'Verily, thy King hath sent thee in quest of this and
that and thy business is thus and thus.' Then do thou propound to him
The Saving Faith."[FN#360] Whereupon Solomon bade his Wazir make ready
a company of his retainers and go forth to meet the Minister of Egypt
with honour and sumptuous provision at the halting-places. So Asaf made
ready all that was needed for their entertainment and setting out,
fared on till he fell in with Faris and accosted him with the salam,
honouring him and his company with exceeding honour. Moreover, he
brought them provaunt and provender at the halting-places and said to
them, "Well come and welcome and fair welcome to the coming guests!
Rejoice in the certain winning of your wish! Be your souls of good
cheer and your eyes cool and clear and your breasts be broadened!"
Quoth Faris in himself, "Who acquainted him with this?"; and he said to
Asaf,[FN#361] "O my lord, and who gave thee to know of us and our
need?" "It was Solomon son of David (on whom be the Peace!), told us of
this!" "And who told our lord Solomon?" "The Lord of the heaven and the
earth told him, the God of all creatures!" "This is none other than a
mighty God!" "And do ye not worship him?" "We worship the Sun, and
prostrate ourselves thereto." "O Wazir Faris, the sun is but a star of
the stars created by Allah (extolled and exalted be He!), and Allah
forbid that it should be a Lord! Because whiles it riseth and whiles it
setteth, but our Lord is ever present and never absent and He over all
things is Omnipotent!" Then they journeyed on a little while till they
came to the land Saba and drew near the throne of Solomon David-son,
(upon the twain be peace!), who commanded his hosts of men and Jinn and
others[FN#362] to form line on their road. So the beasts of the sea and
the elephants and leopards and lynxes and all beasts of the land ranged
themselves in espalier on either side of the way, after their several
kinds, and similarly the Jinn drew out in two ranks, appearing all to
mortal eyes without concealment, in divers forms grisly and gruesome.
So they lined the road on either hand, and the birds bespread their
wings over the host of creatures to shade them, warbling one to other
in all manner of voices and tongues. Now when the people of Egypt came
to this terrible array, they dreaded it and durst not proceed; but Asaf
said to them, "Pass on amidst them and walk forward and fear them not:
for they are slaves of Solomon son of David, and none of them will harm
you." So saying, he entered between the ranks, followed by all the folk
and amongst them the Wazir of Egypt and his company, fearful: and they
ceased not faring forwards till they reached the city, where they
lodged the embassy in the guest-house and for the space of three days
entertained them sumptuously, entreating them with the utmost honour.
Then they carried them before Solomon, prophet of Allah (on whom be the
Peace!), and when entering they would have kissed the earth before him;
but he forbade them, saying, "It befitteth not a man prostrate himself
to earth save before Allah (to whom belong Might and Majesty!), Creator
of Earth and Heaven and all other things; wherefore, whosoever of you
hath a mind to sit let him be seated in my service, or to stand, let
him stand, but let none stand to do me worship." So they obeyed him and
the Wazir Faris and some of his intimates sat down, whilst certain of
the lesser sort remained afoot to wait on him. When they had sat
awhile, the servants spread the tables and they all, men and beasts,
ate their sufficiency.[FN#363] Then Solomon bade Faris expound his
errand, that it might be accomplished, saying, "Speak and hide naught
of that wherefor thou art come; for I know why ye come and what is your
errand, which is thus and thus. The King of Egypt who despatched thee,
Asim hight, hath become a very old man, infirm, decrepit; and Allah
(whose name be exalted!) hath not blessed him with offspring, male or
female. So he abode in cark and care and chagrin from morn to night and
from night to morn. It so happened that one day of the days as he sat
upon the throne of his kingship with his Emirs and Wazirs, and Captains
and Grandees in attendance on him, he saw some of them with two sons,
others with one, and others even three, who came with their sires to do
him service. So he said in himself, of the excess of his sorrow, 'Who
shall get my kingdom after my death? Will any save a stranger take it?
And thus shall I pass out of being as though I had never been!' On this
account he became drowned in the sea of thought, until his eyes were
flooded with tears and he covered his face with his kerchief and wept
with sore weeping. Then he rose from off his throne and sat down upon
the floor wailing and lamenting and none knew what was in heart as he
grovelled in the ground save Allah Almighty."—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Sixtieth Night,

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Solomon
David-son (upon both of whom be peace!) after disclosing to the Wazir
Faris that which had passed between himself and his master, King Asim,
said to him, "Is this that I have told thee the truth, O Wazir?"
Replied Faris, "O prophet of Allah, this thou hast said is indeed sooth
and verity; but when we discoursed of this matter, none was with the
King and myself, nor was any ware of our case; who, then told thee of
all these things?" Answered Solomon, "They were told to me by my Lord
who knoweth whatso is concealed[FN#364] from the eye and what is hidden
in the breasts." Quoth Faris, "O Prophet of Allah, verily this is none
other than a mighty Lord and an omnipotent God!" And he Islamized with
all his many. Then said Solomon to him, "Thou hast with thee such and
such presents and rarities;" and Faris replied "Yes." The prophet
continued, "I accept them all and give them in free gift unto thee. So
do ye rest, thou and thy company, in the place where you have been
lodging, till the fatigue of the journey shall cease from you; and
to-morrow, Inshallah! thine errand shall be accomplished to the
uttermost, if it be the will of Allah the Most High, Lord of heaven and
earth and the light which followeth the gloom; Creator of all
creatures." So Faris returned to his quarters and passed the night in
deep thought. But when morning morrowed he presented himself before the
Lord Solomon, who said to him, "When thou returnest to King Asim bin
Safwan and you twain are re-united, do ye both go forth some day armed
with bow, bolts and brand, and fare to such a place, where ye shall
find a certain tree. Mount upon it and sit silent until the midhour
between noon-prayer and that of mid-afternoon, when the noontide heat
hath cooled; then descend and look at the foot of the tree, whence ye
will see two serpents come forth, one with a head like an ape's and the
other with a head like an Ifrit's. Shoot them ye twain with bolts and
kill them both; then cut off a span's length from their heads and the
like from their tails and throw it away. The rest of the flesh cook and
cook well and give it to your wives to eat: then lie with them that
night and, by Allah's leave, they shall conceive and bear male
children." Moreover, he gave him a seal-ring, a sword and a wrapper
containing two tunics[FN#365] embroidered with gold and jewels, saying,
"O Wazir Faris, when your sons grow up to man's estate, give to each of
them one of these tunics." Then said he, "In the name of Allah! May the
Almighty accomplish your desire! And now nothing remaineth for thee but
to depart, relying on the blessing of the Lord the Most High, for the
King looketh for thy return night and day and his eye is ever gazing on
the road." So the Wazir advanced to the prophet Solomon son of David
(upon both of whom be the Peace!) and farewelled him and fared forth
from him after kissing his hands. Rejoicing in the accomplishment of
his errand he travelled on with all diligence night and day, and ceased
not wayfaring till he drew near to Cairo, when he despatched one of his
servants to acquaint King Asim with his approach and the successful
issue of his journey; which when the King heard he joyed with exceeding
joy, he and his Grandees and Officers and troops especially in the
Wazir's safe return. When they met, the Minister dismounted and,
kissing ground before the King, gave him the glad news anent the
winning of his wish in fullest fashion; after which he expounded the
True Faith to him, and the King and all his people embraced Al-Islam
with much joy and gladness. Then said Asim to his Wazir, "Go home and
rest this night and a week to boot; then go to the Hammam-bath and come
to me, that I may inform thee of what we shall have to consider." So
Faris kissed ground and withdrew, with his suite, pages and eunuchs, to
his house, where he rested eight days; after which he repaired to the
King and related to him all that had passed between Solomon and
himself, adding, "Do thou rise and go forth with me alone." Then the
King and the Minister took two bows and two bolts and repairing to the
tree indicated by Solomon, clomb up into it and there sat in silence
till the mid-day heat had passed away and it was near upon the hour of
mid-afternoon prayer, when they descended and looking about them saw a
serpent-couple[FN#366] issue from the roots of the tree. The King gazed
at them, marvelling to see them ringed with collars of gold about their
necks, and said to Faris, "O Wazir, verily these snakes have golden
torques! By Allah, this is forsooth a rare thing! Let us catch them and
set them in a cage and keep them to look upon." But the Minister said,
"These hath Allah created for profitable use;[FN#367] so do thou shoot
one and I will shoot the other with these our shafts." Accordingly they
shot at them with arrows and slew them; after which they cut off a
span's length of their heads and tails and threw it away. Then they
carried the rest to the King's palace, where they called the kitchener
and giving him the flesh said, "Dress this meat daintily, with
onion-sauce[FN#368] and spices, and ladle it out into two saucers and
bring them hither at such an hour, without delay!"—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the King and
the Wazir gave the serpents' flesh to the kitchener, saying, "Cook it
and ladle it out into two saucers and bring them hither without
delay!"; the cook took the meat and went with it to the kitchen, where
he cooked it and dressed it in skilful fashion with a mighty fine
onion-sauce and hot spices; after which he ladled it out into two
saucers and set them before the King and the Wazir, who took each a
dish and gave their wives to eat of the meat. Then they went in that
night unto them and knew them carnally, and by the good pleasure of
Allah (extolled and exalted be He!) and His all-might and furtherance,
they both conceived on one and the same night. The King abode three
months, troubled in mind and saying in himself, "I wonder whether this
thing will prove true or untrue"; till one day, as the lady his Queen
was sitting, the child stirred in her womb and she felt a pain and her
colour changed. So she knew that she was with child and calling the
chief of her eunuchs, gave him this command, "Go to the King, wherever
he may be and congratulate him saying, 'O King of the Age, I bring thee
the glad tidings that our lady's pregnancy is become manifest, for the
child stirreth in her womb'." So the eunuch went out in haste,
rejoicing, and finding the King alone, with cheek on palm, pondering
this thing, kissed ground between his hands and acquainted him with his
wife's pregnancy. When the King heard his words, he sprang to his feet
and in the excess of his joy, he kissed[FN#369] the eunuch's hands and
head and doffing the clothes he had on, gave them to him. Moreover, he
said to those who were present in his assembly, "Whoso loveth me, let
him bestow largesse upon this man."[FN#370] And they gave him of coin
and jewels and jacinths and horses and mules and estates and gardens
what was beyond count or calculation. At that moment in came the Wazir
Faris and said to Asim, "O my master, but now I was sitting alone at
home and absorbed in thought, pondering the matter of the pregnancy and
saying to myself, 'Would I wot an this thing be true and whether my
wife Khátún[FN#371] have conceived or not!' when, behold, an eunuch
came in to me and brought me the glad tidings that his lady was indeed
pregnant, for that her colour was changed and the child stirred in her
womb; whereupon, in my joy, I doffed all the clothes I had on and gave
them to him, together with a thousand dinars, and made him Chief of the
Eunuchs." Rejoined the King, "O Minister, Allah (extolled and exalted
be He!) hath, of His grace and bounty and goodness, and beneficence,
made gift to us of the True Faith and brought us out of night into
light, and hath been bountiful to us, of His favour and benevolence;
wherefore I am minded to solace the folk and cause them to rejoice."
Quoth Faris, "Do what thou wilt,[FN#372]" and quoth the King, "O Wazir,
go down without stay or delay and set free all who are in the prisons,
both criminals and debtors, and whoso transgresseth after this, we will
requite as he deserveth even to the striking off of his head. Moreover,
we forgive the people three years' taxes, and do thou set up kitchens
all around about the city walls[FN#373] and bid the kitcheners hang
over the fire all kinds of cooking pots and cook all manner of meats,
continuing their cooking night and day, and let all comers, both of our
citizens and of the neighbouring countries, far and near, eat and drink
and carry to their houses. And do thou command the people to make
holiday and decorate the city seven days and shut not the taverns night
nor day[FN#374]; and if thou delay I will behead thee[FN#375]!" So he
did as the King bade him and the folk decorated the city and citadel
and bulwarks after the goodliest fashion and, donning their richest
attire, passed their time in feasting and sporting and making merry,
till the days of the Queen's pregnancy were accomplished and she was
taken, one night, with labour pains hard before dawn. Then the King
bade summon all the Olema and astronomers, mathematicians and men of
learning, astrologers, scientists and scribes in the city, and they
assembled and sat awaiting the throwing of a bead into the cup[FN#376]
which was to be the signal to the Astrophils, as well as to the nurses
and attendants, that the child was born. Presently, as they sat in
expectation, the Queen gave birth to a boy like a slice of the moon
when fullest and the astrologers fell to calculating and noted his star
and nativity and drew his horoscope. Then, on being summoned they rose
and, kissing the earth before the King, gave him the glad tidings,
saying, "In very sooth the new-born child is of happy augury and born
under an auspicious aspect, but" they added, "in the first of his life
there will befall him a thing which we fear to name before the King."
Quoth Asim, "Speak and fear not;" so quoth they, "O King, this boy will
fare forth from this land and journey in strangerhood and suffer
shipwreck and hardship and prisonment and distress, and indeed he hath
before him the sorest of sufferings; but he shall free him of them in
the end, and win to his wish and live the happiest of lives the rest of
his days, ruling over subjects with a strong hand and having dominion
in the land, despite enemies and enviers." Now when the King heard the
astrologers' words, he said, "The matter is a mystery; but all that
Allah Almighty hath written for the creature of good and bad cometh to
pass and needs must betide him from this day to that a thousand
solaces." So he paid no heed to their words or attention to their
speeches but bestowed on them robes of honour, as well upon all who
were present, and dismissed them; when, behold, in came Faris the Wazir
and kissed the earth before the King in huge joy, saying, "Good
tidings, O King! My wife hath but now given birth to a son, as he were
a slice of the moon." Replied Asim, "O Wazir, go, bring thy wife and
child hither, that she may abide with my wife in my palace, and they
shall bring up the two boys together." So Faris fetched his wife and
son and they committed the two children to the nurses wet and dry. And
after seven days had passed over them, they brought them before the
King and said to him, "What wilt thou name the twain?" Quoth he, "Do ye
name them;" but quoth they, "None nameth the son save his sire." So he
said, "Name my son Sayf al-Muluk, after my grandfather, and the
Minister's son Sa'id[FN#377] Then he bestowed robes of honour on the
nurses wet and dry and said to them, "Be ye ruthful over them and rear
them after the goodliest fashion." So they brought up the two boys
diligently till they reached the age of five, when the King committed
them to a doctor of Sciences[FN#378] who taught them to read the Koran
and write. When they were ten years old, King Asim gave them in charge
to masters, who instructed them in cavalarice and shooting with shafts
and lunging with lance and play of Polo and the like till, by the time
they were fifteen years old, they were clever in all manner of martial
exercises, nor was there one to vie with them in horsemanship, for each
of them would do battle with a thousand men and make head against them
single handed. So when they came to years of discretion, whenever King
Asim looked on them he joyed in them with exceeding joy; and when they
attained their twenty-fifth year, he took Faris his Minister apart one
day and said to him, "O Wazir, I am minded to consult with thee
concerning a thing I desire to do." Replied he, "Whatever thou hast a
mind to do, do it; for thy judgment is blessed." Quoth the King, "O
Wazir, I am become a very old and decrepit man, sore stricken in years,
and I desire to take up my abode in an oratory, that I may worship
Allah Almighty and give my kingdom and Sultanate to my son Sayf
al-Muluk for that he is grown a goodly youth, perfect in knightly
exercises and intellectual attainments, polite letters and gravity,
dignity and the art of government. What sayst thou, O Minister, of this
project?" And quoth the counsellor, "Right indeed is thy rede: the idea
is a blessed and a fortunate, and if thou do this, I will do the like
and my son Sa'id shall be the Prince's Wazir, for he is a comely young
man and complete in knowledge and judgment. Thus will the two youths be
together, and we will order their affair and neglect not their case,
but guide them to goodness and in the way that is straight." Quoth the
King, "Write letters and send them by couriers to all the countries and
cities and sconces and fortresses that be under our hands, bidding
their chiefs be present on such a day at the Horse-course of the
Elephant."[FN#379] So the Wazir went out without stay or delay and
despatched letters of this purport to all the deputies and governors of
fortresses and others under King Asim; and he commanded also that all
in the city should be present, far and near, high and low. When the
appointed time drew nigh, King Asim bade the tent-pitchers plant
pavilions in the midst of the Champ-de-Mars and decorate them after the
most sumptuous fashion and set up the great throne whereon he sat not
but on festivals. And they at once did his bidding. Then he and all his
Nabobs and Chamberlains and Emirs sallied forth, and he commanded
proclamation be made to the people, saying, "In the name of Allah, come
forth to the Maydán!" So all the Emirs and Wazirs and Governors of
provinces and Feudatories[FN#380] came forth to the place of assembly
and, entering the royal pavilion, addressed themselves to the service
of the King as was their wont, and abode in their several stations,
some sitting and others standing, till all the people were gathered
together, when the King bade spread the tables and they ate and drank
and prayed for him. Then he commanded the Chamberlains[FN#381] to
proclaim to the people that they should not depart: so they made
proclamation to them, saying, "Let none of you fare hence till he have
heard the King's words!" So they withdrew the curtains of the royal
pavilion and the King said, "Whoso loveth me, let him remain till he
have heard my speech!" Whereupon all the folk sat down in mind tranquil
after they had been fearful, saying, "Wherefore have we been summoned
by the King?" Then the Sovran rose to his feet, and making them swear
that none would stir from his stead, said to them, "O ye Emirs and
Wazirs and Lords of the land; the great and the small of you, and all
ye who are present of the people; say me, wot ye not that this kingdom
was an inheritance to me from my fathers and forefathers?" Answered
they, "Yes, O King we all know that." And he continued, "I and you, we
all worshipped the sun and moon, till Allah (extolled and exalted be
He!) vouchsafed us the knowledge of the True Faith and brought us out
of darkness unto light, and directed us to the religion of Al-Islam.
Know that I am become a very old man, feeble and decrepit, and I desire
to take up my abode in a hermitage[FN#382] there to worship Allah
Almighty and crave His pardon for past offenses and make this my son
Sayf al-Muluk ruler. Ye know full well that he is a comely youth,
eloquent, liberal, learned, versed in affairs, intelligent, equitable;
wherefore I am minded presently to resign to him my realm and to make
him ruler over you and seat him as Sultan in my stead, whilst I give
myself to solitude and to the worship of Allah in an oratory, and my
son and heir shall judge between you. What say ye then, all of you?"
Thereupon they all rose and kissing ground before him, made answer with
"Hearing and obedience," saying, "O our King and our defender an thou
should set over us one of thy blackamoor slaves we would obey him and
hearken to thy word and accept thy command: how much more then with thy
son Sayf al-Muluk? Indeed, we accept of him and approve him on our eyes
and heads!" So King Asim bin Safwan arose and came down from his seat
and seating his son on the great throne,[FN#383] took the crown from
his own head and set it on the head of Sayf al-Muluk and girt his
middle with the royal girdle.[FN#384] Then he sat down beside his son
on the throne of his kingship, whilst the Emirs and Wazirs and Lords of
the land and all the rest of the folk rose and kissed ground before
him, saying, "Indeed, he is worthy of the kingship and hath better
right to it than any other." Then the Chamberlains made proclamation
crying, "Amán! Amán! Safety! Safety!" and offered up prayers for his
victory and prosperity. And Sayf al-Muluk scattered gold and silver on
the heads of the lieges one and all.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn
of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when King Asim
seated his son, Sayf al-Muluk, upon the throne and all the people
prayed for his victory and prosperity, the youth scattered gold and
silver on the heads of the lieges, one and all, and conferred robes of
honour and gave gifts and largesse. Then, after a moment, the Wazir
Faris arose and kissing ground said, "O Emirs, O Grandees, ye ken that
I am Wazir and that my Wazirate dateth from old, before the accession
of King Asim bin Safwan, who hath now divested himself of the Kingship
and made his son King in his stead?" Answered they, "Yes, we know that
thy Wazirate is from sire after grandsire." He continued, "And now in
my turn I divest myself of office and invest this my son Sa'id, for he
is intelligent, quick-witted, sagacious. What say ye all?" And they
replied, "None is worthy to be Wazir to King Sayf al-Muluk but thy son
Sa'id, and they befit each other." With this Faris arose and taking off
his Wazirial turband, set it on his son's head and eke laid his
ink-case of office before him, whilst the Chamberlains and the Emirs
said, "Indeed, he is deserving of the Wazirship" and the Heralds cried
aloud, "Mubárak! Mubarak!—Felix sit et faustus!" After this, King Asim
and Faris the Minister arose and, opening the royal treasuries,
conferred magnificent robes of honour on all the Viceroys and Emirs and
Wazirs and Lords of the land and other folk and gave salaries and
benefactions and wrote them new mandates and diplomas with the
signatures of King Sayf al-Muluk and his Wazir Sa'id. Moreover, he made
distribution of money to the men-at-arms and gave guerdons, and the
provincials abode in the city a full week ere they departed each to his
own country and place. Then King Asim carried his son and his Wazir
Sa'id back to the palace which was in the city and bade the treasurer
bring the seal-ring and signet,[FN#385] sword and wrapper; which being
done, he said to the two young men, "O my sons, come hither and let
each of you choose two of these things and take them." The first to
make choice was Sayf al-Muluk, who put out his hand and took the ring
and the wrapper, whilst Sa'id took the sword and the signet; after
which they both kissed the King's hands and went away to their lodging.
Now Sayf al-Muluk opened not the wrapper to see what was therein, but
threw it on the couch where he and Sa'id slept by night, for it was
their habit to lie together. Presently they spread them the bed and the
two lay down with a pair of wax candles burning over them, and slept
till midnight, when Sayf al-Muluk awoke and, seeing the bundle at his
head, said in his mind, "I wonder what thing of price is in this
wrapper my father gave me!" So he took it together with a candle and
descended from the couch leaving Sa'id sleeping and carried the bundle
into a closet, where he opened it and found within a tunic of the
fabric of the Jann. He spread it out and saw on the lining[FN#386] of
the back, the portraiture wroughten in gold of a girl and marvellous
was her loveliness; and no sooner had he set eyes on the figure than
his reason fled his head and he became Jinn-mad for love thereof, so
that he fell down in a swoon and presently recovering, began to weep
and lament, beating his face and breast and kissing her. And he recited
these verses,

"Love, at the first, is a spurt of spray[FN#387] * Which Doom
     disposes and Fates display;
Till, when deep diveth youth in passion-sea * Unbearable
     sorrows his soul waylay."

And also these two couplets,

"Had I known of love in what fashion he * Robbeth heart and
     soul I had guarded me:
But of malice prepense I threw self away, * Unwitting of Love
     what his nature be."

And Sayf al-Muluk ceased not to weep and wail and beat face and breast,
till Sa'id awoke and missing him from the bed and seeing but a single
candle, said to himself, "Whither is Sayf al-Muluk gone?" Then he took
the other candle and went round about the palace, till he came upon the
closet where he saw the Prince lying at full length, weeping with sore
weeping and lamenting aloud. So he said to him, "O my brother, for what
cause are these tears and what hath befallen thee? Speak to me and tell
me the reason thereof." But Sayf al-Muluk spoke not neither raised his
head and continued to weep and wail and beat hand on breast. Seeing him
in this case quoth Sa'id, "I am thy Wazir and thy brother, and we were
reared together, I and thou; so an thou do not unburden thy breast and
discover thy secret to me, to whom shalt thou reveal it and disclose
its cause?" And he went on to humble himself and kiss the ground before
him a full hour, whilst Sayf al-Muluk paid no heed to him nor answered
him a word, but gave not over to weeping. At last, being affrighted at
his case and weary of striving with him, he went out and fetched a
sword, with which he returned to the closet, and setting the point to
his own breast, said to the Prince, "Rouse thee, O my brother! An thou
tell me not what aileth thee, I will slay myself and see thee no longer
in this case." Whereupon Sayf al-Muluk raised his head towards the
Wazir and answered him, "O my brother, I am ashamed to tell thee what
hath betided me;" but Sa'id said, "I conjure thee by Allah, Lord of
Lords, Liberator of Necks,[FN#388] Causer of causes, the One, the
Ruthful, the Gift-full, the Bountiful, that thou tell me what aileth
thee and be not abashed at me, for I am thy slave and thy Minister and
counsellor in all thine affairs!" Quoth Sayf al-Muluk, "Come and look
at this likeness." So Sa'id looked at it awhile and considering it
straitly, behold, he saw written, as a crown over its head, in letters
of pearl, these words, "This is the counterfeit presentment of Badi'a
al-Jamal, daughter of Shahyál bin Shárukh, a King of the Kings of the
true-believing Jann who have taken up their abode in the city of Babel
and sojourn in the garden of Iram, Son of 'Ad the
Greater.'"[FN#389]—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Sa'id,
son of the Wazir Faris, had read to Sayf al-Muluk, son of King Asim,
the writ on the tunic, which showed the portraiture of Badi'a al-Jamal,
daughter of Shahyal bin Sharukh, a King of the Kings of the Moslem
Jinns dwelling in Babel-city and in the Garden of Iram, son of 'Ad the
Greater, he cried, "O my brother, knowest thou of what woman this is
the presentment, that we may seek for her?" Sayf al-Muluk replied, "No,
by Allah, O my brother, I know her not!" and Sa'id rejoined, "Come,
read this writing on the crown." So Sayf al-Muluk read it and cried out
from his heart's core and very vitals, saying, "Alas! Alas! Alas!"
Quoth Sa'id, "O my brother, an the original of the portrait exist and
her name be Badi'a al-Jamal, and she abide in the world, I will hasten
to seek her, that thou mayst win thy will without delay. But, Allah
upon thee, O my brother, leave this weeping and ascend thy throne, that
the Officers of the State may come in to do their service to thee, and
in the undurn, do thou summon the merchants and fakirs and travellers
and pilgrims and paupers and ask of them concerning this city and the
garden of Iram; haply by the help and blessing of Allah (extolled and
exalted be He!), some one of them shall direct us thither." So, when it
was day, Sayf al-Muluk went forth and mounted the throne, clasping the
tunic in his arms, for he could neither stand nor sit without it, nor
would sleep visit him save it were with him; and the Emirs and Wazirs
and Lords and Officers came in to him. When the Divan was complete all
being assembled in their places he said to his Minister, "Go forth to
them and tell them that the King hath been suddenly struck by sickness
and he, by Allah, hath passed the night in ill case." So Sa'id fared
forth and told the folk what he said; which when old King Asim heard,
he was concerned for his son and, summoning the physicians and
astrologers, carried them in to Sayf al-Muluk. They looked at him and
prescribed him ptisanes and diet-drinks, simples and medicinal waters
and wrote him characts and incensed him with Nadd and aloes-wood and
ambergris three days' space; but his malady persisted three months,
till King Asim was wroth with the leaches and said to them, "Woe to
you, O dogs! What? Are all of you impotent to cure my son? Except ye
heal him forthright, I will put the whole of you to death." The
Archiater replied, "O King of the Age, in very sooth we know that this
is thy son and thou wottest that we fail not of diligence in tending a
stranger; so how much more with medicining thy son? But thy son is
afflicted with a malady hard to heal, which, if thou desire to know, we
will discover it to thee." Quoth Asim, "What then find ye to be the
malady of my son?"; and quoth the leach, "O King of the Age, thy son is
in love and he loveth one to whose enjoyment he hath no way of access."
At this the King was wroth and asked, "How know ye that my son is in
love and how came love to him?"; they answered, "Enquire of his Wazir
and brother Sa'id, for he knoweth his case." The King rose and repaired
to his private closet and summoning Sa'id said to him, "Tell me the
truth of thy brother's malady." But Sa'id replied, "I know it not." So
King Asim said to the Sworder, "Take Sa'id and bind his eyes and strike
his neck." Whereupon Sa'id feared for himself and cried, "O King of the
Age, grant me immunity." Replied the King, "Speak and thou shalt have
it." "Thy son is in love." "With whom is he in love?" "With a King's
daughter of the Jann." "And where could he have espied a daughter of
the Jinns?" "Her portrait is wroughten on the tunic that was in the
bundle given thee by Solomon, prophet of Allah!" When the King heard
this, he rose, and going in to Sayf al-Muluk, said to him, "O my son,
what hath afflicted thee? What is this portrait whereof thou art
enamoured? And why didst thou not tell me." He replied, "O my sire, I
was ashamed to name this to thee and could not bring myself to discover
aught thereof to any one at all; but now thou knowest my case, look how
thou mayest do to cure me." Rejoined his father, "What is to be done?
Were this one of the daughters of men we might devise a device for
coming at her; but she is a King's daughter of the Jinns and who can
woo and win her, save it be Solomon David-son, and hardly he?[FN#390]
However, O my son, do thou arise forthright and hearten thy heart and
take horse and ride out a-hunting or to weapon-play in the Maydan.
Divert thyself with eating and drinking and put away cark and care from
thy heart, and I will bring thee an hundred maids of the daughters of
Kings; for thou hast no need to the daughters of the Jann, over whom we
lack controul and of kind other than ours." But he said, "I cannot
renounce her nor will I seek other than her." Asked King Asim, "How
then shall we do, O my son?"; and Sayf al-Muluk answered, "Bring us all
the merchants and travellers and wanderers in the city, that we may
question them thereof. Peradventure, Allah will lead us to the city of
Babel and the garden of Iram." So King Asim bade summon all the
merchants in the city and strangers and sea-captains and, as each came,
enquired of him anent the city of Babel and its peninsula[FN#391] and
the garden of Iram; but none of them knew these places nor could any
give him tidings thereof. However, when the séance broke up, one of
them said, "O King of the Age, an thou be minded to ken this thing, up
and hie thee to the land of China; for it hath a vast city[FN#392] and
a safe, wherein are store of rarities and things of price and folk of
all kinds; and thou shalt not come to the knowledge of this city and
garden but from its folk; it may be one of them will direct thee to
that thou seekest." Whereupon quoth Sayf al-Muluk, "O my sire, equip me
a ship, that I may fare to the China-land; and do thou rule the reign
in my stead." Replied the old King, "O my son, abide thou on the throne
of thy kingship and govern thy commons, and I myself will make the
voyage to China and ask for thee of the city of Babel and the garden of
Iram." But Sayf al-Muluk rejoined, "O my sire, in very sooth this
affair concerneth me and none can search after it like myself: so, come
what will, an thou give me leave to make the voyage, I will depart and
wander awhile. If I find trace or tidings of her, my wish will be won,
and if not, belike the voyage will broaden my breast and recruit my
courage; and haply by foreign travel my case will be made easy to me,
and if I live, I shall return to thee safe and sound."—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Sayf al-Muluk
said to his sire King Asim, "Equip me a ship that I may fare therein to
the China-land and search for the object of my desire. If I live I
shall return to thee safe and sound." The old King looked at his son
and saw nothing for it but to do what he desired; so he gave him the
leave he wanted and fitted him forty ships, manned with twenty thousand
armed Mamelukes, besides servants, and presented him with great plenty
of money and necessaries and warlike gear, as much as he required. When
the ships were laden with water and victual, weapons and troops, Sayf
al-Muluk's father and mother farewelled him and King Asim said,
"Depart, O my son, and travel in weal and health and safety. I commend
thee to Him with Whom deposits are not lost."[FN#393] So the Prince
bade adieu to his parents and embarked, with his brother Sa'id, and
they weighed anchor and sailed till they came to the City of China.
When the Chinamen heard of the coming of forty ships, full of armed men
and stores, weapons and hoards, they made sure that these were enemies
come to battle with them and seige them; so they bolted the gates of
the town and made ready the mangonels.[FN#394] But Sayf al-Muluk,
hearing of this, sent two of his Chief Mamelukes to the King of China,
bidding them say to him, "This is Sayf al-Muluk, son of King Asim of
Egypt, who is come to thy city as a guest, to divert himself by viewing
thy country awhile, and not for conquest or contention; wherefore, an
thou wilt receive him, he will come ashore to thee; and if not he will
return and will not disquiet thee nor the people of thy capital." They
presented themselves at the city gates and said, "We are messengers
from King Sayf al-Muluk." Whereupon the townsfolk opened the gates and
carried them to their King, whose name was Faghfúr[FN#395] Shah and
between whom and King Asim there had erst been acquaintance. So, when
he heard that the new-comer Prince was the son of King Asim, he
bestowed robes of honour on the messengers and, bidding open the gates,
made ready guest-gifts and went forth in person with the chief officers
of his realm, to meet Sayf al-Muluk, and the two Kings embraced. Then
Faghfur said to his guest, "Well come and welcome and fair cheer to him
who cometh to us! I am thy slave and the slave of thy sire: my city is
between thy hands to command and whatso thou seekest shall be brought
before thee." Then he presented him with the guest-gifts and victual
for the folk at their stations; and they took horse, with the Wazir
Sa'id and the chiefs of their officers and the rest of their troops,
and rode from the sea-shore to the city, which they entered with
cymbals clashing and drums beating in token of rejoicing. There they
abode in the enjoyment of fair entertainment for forty days, at the end
of which quoth the King of China to Sayf al-Muluk, "O son of my
brother, how is thy case[FN#396]? Doth my country please thee?"; and
quoth Sayf al-Muluk, "May Allah Almighty long honour it with thee, O
King!" Said Faghfur, "Naught hath brought thee hither save some need
which hath occurred to thee; and whatso thou desirest of my country I
will accomplish it to the." Replied Sayf al-Muluk, "O King, my case is
a wondrous, "and told him how he had fallen in love with the portrait
of Badi'a al-Jamal, and wept bitter tears. When the King of China heard
his story, he wept for pity and solicitude for him and cried, "And what
wouldst thou have now, O Sayf al-Muluk?"; and he rejoined, "I would
have thee bring me all the wanderers and travellers, the seafarers and
sea-captains, that I may question them of the original of this
portrait; perhaps one of them may give me tidings of her." So Faghfur
Shah sent out his Nabobs and Chamberlains and body-guards to fetch all
the wanderers and travellers in the land, and they brought them before
the two Kings, and they were a numerous company. Then Sayf al-Muluk
questioned them of the City of Babel and the Garden of Iram, but none
of them returned him a reply, whereupon he was bewildered and wist not
what to do; but one of the sea-captains said to him, "O auspicious
King, an thou wouldst know of this city and that garden, up and hie
thee to the Islands of the Indian realm."[FN#397] Thereupon Sayf
al-Muluk bade bring the ships; which being done, they freighted them
with vivers and water and all that they needed, and the Prince and his
Wazir re-embarked, with all their men, after they had farewelled King
Faghfur Shah. They sailed the seas four months with a fair wind, in
safety and satisfaction till it chanced that one day of the days there
came out upon them a wind and the billows buffeted them from all
quarters. The rain and hail[FN#398] descended on them and during twenty
days the sea was troubled for the violence of the wind; wherefor the
ships drave one against other and brake up, as did the carracks[FN#399]
and all on board were drowned, except Sayf al-Muluk and some of his
servants, who saved themselves in a little cock-boat. Then the wind
fell by the decree of Allah Almighty and the sun shone out; whereupon
Sayf al-Muluk opened his eyes and seeing no sign of the ships nor aught
but sky and sea, said to the Mamelukes who were with him, "Where are
the carracks and cock-boats and where is my brother Sa'id?" They
replied, "O King of the Age, there remain nor ships nor boats nor those
who were therein; for they are all drowned and become food for fishes."
Now when he heard this, he cried aloud and repeated the saying which
whoso saith shall not be confounded, and it is, "There is no Majesty
and there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!" Then he
fell to buffeting his face and would have cast himself into the sea,
but his Mamelukes withheld him, saying "O King, what will this profit
thee? Thou hast brought all this on thyself; for, hadst thou hearkened
to thy father's words, naught thereof had betided thee. But this was
written from all eternity by the will of the Creator of Souls."—And
Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted

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

She resume, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Sayf
al-Muluk would have cast himself into the main, his Mamelukes withheld
him saying, "What will this profit thee? Thou hast done this deed by
thyself, yet was it written from all eternity by the will of the
Creator of Souls, that the creature might accomplish that which Allah
hath decreed unto him. And indeed, at the time of thy birth, the
astrologers assured thy sire that all manner troubles should befal
thee. So there is naught for it but patience till Allah deliver us from
this our strait." Replied the Prince, "There is no Majesty and there is
no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great! Neither is there
refuge nor fleeing from that which He decreeth!" And he sighed and
recited these couplets,

"By the Compassionate, I'm dazed about my case for lo! *
     Troubles and griefs beset me sore; I know not whence they
I will be patient, so the folk, that I against a thing *
     Bitt'rer than very aloes' self,[FN#400] endurèd have, may
Less bitter than my patience is the taste of aloes-juice; *
     I've borne with patience what's more hot than coals with
     fire aglow.
In this my trouble what resource have I, save to commit * My
     case to Him who orders all that is, for weal or woe?"

Then he became drowned in the depth of thoughts and his tears ran down
upon his cheeks like torrent-rain; and he slept a while of the day,
after which he awoke and sought of food somewhat. So they set meat
before him and he ate his sufficiency, till they removed the food from
before him, whilst the boat drove on with them they knew not whither it
was wandering. It drifted with them at the will of the winds and the
waves, night and day a great while, till their victual was spent and
they saw themselves shent and were reduced to extreme hunger and thirst
and exhaustion, when behold, suddenly they sighted an island from afar
and the breezes wafted them on, till they came thither. Then, making
the cock-boat fast to the coast and leaving one therein to guard it,
they fared on into the island, where they found abundance of fruits of
all colours and ate of them till they were satisfied. Presently, they
saw a person sitting among those trees and he was long-faced, of
strange favour and white of beard and body. He called to one of the
Mamelukes by his name, saying, "Eat not of these fruits, for they are
unripe; but come hither to me, that I may give thee to eat of the best
and the ripest." The slave looked at him and thought that he was one of
the shipwrecked, who had made his way to that island; so he joyed with
exceeding joy at sight of him and went close up to him, knowing not
what was decreed to him in the Secret Purpose nor what was writ upon
his brow. But, when he drew near, the stranger in human shape leapt
upon him, for he was a Marid,[FN#401] and riding upon his
shoulderblades and twisting one of his legs about his neck, let the
other hang down upon his back, saying, "Walk on, fellow; for there is
no escape for thee from me and thou art become mine ass." Thereupon the
Mameluke fell a-weeping and cried out to his comrades, "Alas, my lord!
Flee ye forth of this wood and save yourselves, for one of the dwellers
therein hath mounted on my shoulders, and the rest seek you, desiring
to ride you like me."When they heard these words, all fled down to the
boat and pushed off to sea; whilst the islanders followed them into the
water, saying, "Whither wend ye? Come, tarry with us and we will mount
on your backs and give you meat and drink, and you shall be our
donkeys." Hearing this they hastened the more seawards till they left
them in the distance and fared on, trusting in Allah Almighty; nor did
they leave faring for a month, till another island rose before them and
thereon they landed. Here they found fruits of various kinds and busied
themselves with eating of them, when behold, they saw from afar,
somewhat lying in the road, a hideous creature as it were a column of
silver. So they went up to it and one of the men gave it a kick, when
lo! it was a thing of human semblance, long of eyes and cloven of head
and hidden under one of his ears, for he was wont, whenas he lay down
to sleep, to spread one ear under his head, and cover his face with the
other ear.[FN#402] He snatched up the Mameluke who had kicked him and
carried him off into the middle of the island, and behold, it was all
full of Ghuls who eat the sons of Adam. The man cried out to his
fellows, "Save yourselves, for this is the island of the man-eating
Ghuls, and they mean to tear me to bits and devour me." When they heard
these words they fled back to the boat, without gathering any store of
the fruits and, putting out to sea, fared on some days till it so
happened that they came to another island, where they found a high
mountain. So they climbed to the top and there saw a thick copse. Now
they were sore anhungered; so they took to eating of the fruits; but,
before they were aware, there came upon them from among the trees black
men of terrible aspect, each fifty cubits high with eye-teeth[FN#403]
protruding from their mouths like elephants' tusks; and, laying hands
on Sayf al-Muluk and his company, carried them to their King, whom they
found seated on a piece of black felt laid on a rock, and about him a
great company of Zanzibar-blacks, standing in his service. The
blackamoors who had captured the Prince and his Mamelukes set them
before the King and said to him, "We found these birds amoung the
trees"; and the King was sharp-set; so he took two of the servants and
cut their throats and ate them;—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the
Zanzibar-blacks took Sayf al-Muluk and his Mamelukes and set them
before the King, saying, "O King, we came upon these birds among the
trees." Thereupon the King seized two of the Mamelukes and cut their
throats and ate them; which, when Sayf al-Muluk saw, he feared for
himself and wept and repeated these verses,

"Familiar with my heart are woes and with them I * Who shunned
     them; for familiar are great hearts and high.
The woes I suffer are not all of single kind. * I have, thank
     Allah, varied thousands to aby!"

Then he signed and repeated these also,

"The World hath shot me with its sorrows till * My heart is
     coverèd with shafts galore;
And now, when strike me other shafts, must break * Against th'
     old points the points that latest pour."

When the King heard his weeping and wailing, he said, "Verily these
birds have sweet voices and their song pleaseth me: put them in cages."
So they set them each in his own cage and hung them up at the King's
head that he might listen to their warbling. On this wise Sayf al-Muluk
and his Mamelukes abode and the blackamoors gave them to eat and drink:
and now they wept and now laughed, now spake and now were hushed,
whilst the King of the blacks delighted in the sound of their voices.
And so they continued for a long time. Now this King had a daughter
married in another island who, hearing that her father had birds with
sweet voices, sent a messenger to him seeking of him some of them. So
he sent her, by her Cossid,[FN#404] Sayf al-Muluk and three of his men
in four cages; and, when she saw them, they pleased her and she bade
hang them up in a place over her head. The Prince fell to marvelling at
that which had befallen him and calling to mind his former high and
honourable estate and weeping for himself; and the three servants wept
for themselves; and the King's daughter deemed that they sang. Now it
was her wont, whenever any one from the land of Egypt or elsewhere fell
into her hands and he pleased her, to advance him to great favour with
her; and by the decree of Allah Almighty it befel that, when she saw
Sayf al-Muluk she was charmed by his beauty and loveliness and symmetry
and perfect grace, and she commanded to entreat him and his companions
with honour and to loose them from their cages. Now one day she took
the Prince apart and would have him enjoy her; but he refused, saying,
"O my lady, I am a banisht wight and with passion for a beloved one in
piteous plight, nor with other will I consent to love-delight." Then
she coaxed him and importuned him, but he held aloof from her, and she
could not approach him nor get her desire of him by any ways and means.
At last, when she was weary of courting him in vain, she waxed wroth
with him and his Mamelukes, and commanded that they should serve her
and fetch her wood and water. In such condition they abode four years
till Sayf al-Muluk became weary of his life and sent to intercede with
the Princess, so haply she might release them and let them wend their
ways and be at rest from that their hard labour. So she sent for him
and said to him, "If thou wilt do my desire, I will free thee from this
thy durance vile and thou shalt go to thy country, safe and sound." And
she wept and ceased not to humble herself to him and wheedle him, but
he would not hearken to her words; whereupon she turned from him, in
anger, and he and his companions abode on the island in the same
plight. The islanders knew them for "The Princess's birds" and durst
not work them any wrong; and her heart was at ease concerning them,
being assured that they could not escape from the island. So they used
to absent themselves from her two and three days at a time and go round
about the desert parts in all directions, gathering firewood, which
they brought to the Princess's kitchen; and thus they abode
five[FN#405] years. Now one day it so chanced that the Prince and his
men were sitting on the sea-shore, devising of what had befallen, and
Sayf al-Muluk, seeing himself and his men in such case, bethought him
of his mother and father and his brother Sa'id and, calling to mind
what high degree he had been in, fell a-weeping and lamenting passing
sore, whilst his slaves wept likewise. Then said they to him, "O King
of the Age, how long shall we weep? Weeping availeth not; for this
thing was written on our brows by the ordinance of Allah, to whom
belong Might and Majesty. Indeed, the Pen runneth with that He decreeth
and nought will serve us but patience: haply Allah (extolled and
exalted be He!) who hath saddened us shall gladden us!" Quoth he, "O my
brothers, how shall we win free from this accursed woman? I see no way
of escape for us, save Allah of his grace deliver us from her; but
methinks we may flee and be at rest from this hard labour." And quoth
they, "O King of the Age, whither shall we flee? For the whole island
is full of Ghuls which devour the Sons of Adam, and whithersoever we
go, they will find us there and either eat us or capture and carry us
back to that accursed, the King's daughter, who will be wroth with us."
Sayf al-Muluk rejoined, "I will contrive you somewhat, whereby
peradventure Allah Almighty shall deliver us and help us to escape from
this island." They asked, "And how wilt thou do?"; and he answered,
"Let us cut some of these long pieces of wood, and twist ropes of their
bark and bind them one with another, and make of them a raft[FN#406]
which we will launch and load with these fruits: then we will fashion
us paddles and embark on the raft after breaking our bonds with the
axe. It may be that Almighty Allah will make it the means of our
deliverance from this accursed woman and vouchsafe us a fair wind to
bring us to the land of Hind, for He over all things is Almighty!" Said
they, "Right is thy rede," and rejoiced thereat with exceeding joy. So
they arose without stay or delay and cut with their axes wood for the
raft and twisted ropes to bind the logs and at this they worked a whole
month. Every day about evening they gathered somewhat of fuel and bore
it to the Princess's kitchen, and employed the rest of the twenty-four
hours working at the raft.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Sayf
al-Muluk and his Mamelukes, having cut the wood and twisted the ropes
for their raft, made an end of it and launched it upon the sea; then,
after breaking their bonds with the axe, and loading the craft with
fruits plucked from the island-trees, they embarked at close of day;
nor did any wot of their intent. They put out to sea in their raft and
paddled on four months, knowing not whither the craft carried them,
till their provaunt failed them and they were suffering the severest
extreme of hunger and thirst, when behold, the sea waxed troubled and
foamed and rose in high waves, and there came forth upon them a
frightful crocodile,[FN#407] which put out its claw and catching up one
of the Mamelukes swallowed him. At the sight of this horror Sayf
al-Muluk wept bitterly and he and the two men[FN#408] that remained to
him pushed off from the place where they had seen the crocodile, sore
affrighted. After this they continued drifting on till one day they
espied a mountain terrible tall and spiring high in air, whereat they
rejoiced, when presently an island appeared. They made towards it with
all their might congratulating one another on the prospect of making
land; but hardly had they sighted the island on which was the mountain,
when the sea changed face and boiled and rose in big waves and a second
crocodile raised its head and putting out its claw caught up the two
remaining Mamelukes and swallowed them. So Sayf al-Muluk abode alone,
and making his way to the island, toiled till he reached the
mountain-top, where he looked about and found a copse, and walking
among the trees feel to eating of the fruits. Presently, he saw among
the branches more than twenty great apes, each bigger than a he-mule,
whereat he was seized with exceeding fear. The apes came down and
surrounded him;[FN#409] then they forewent him, signing to him to
follow them, and walked on, and he too, till he came to a castle, tall
of base and strong of build whose ordinance was one brick of gold and
one of silver. The apes entered and he after them, and he saw in the
castle all manner of rarities, jewels and precious metals such as
tongue faileth to describe. Here also he found a young man, passing
tall of stature with no hair on his cheeks, and Sayf al-Muluk was
cheered by the sight for there was no human being but he in the castle.
The stranger marvelled exceedingly at sight of the Prince and asked
him, "What is thy name and of what land art thou and how camest thou
hither? Tell me thy tale and hide from me naught thereof." Answered the
Prince, "By Allah, I came not hither of my own consent nor is this
place of my intent; yet I cannot but go from place to place till I win
my wish." Quoth the youth, "And what is thy object?"; and quoth the
other, "I am of the land of Egypt and my name is Sayf al-Muluk son of
King Asim bin Safwan"; and told him all that had passed with him, from
first to last. Whereupon the youth arose and stood in his service,
saying, "O King of the Age, I was erst in Egypt and heard that thou
hadst gone to the land of China; but where is this land and where lies
China-land?[FN#410] Verily, this is a wondrous thing and marvellous
matter!" Answered the Prince, "Sooth thou speakest but, when I left
China-land, I set out, intending for the land of Hind and a stormy wind
arose and the sea boiled and broke all my ships"; brief, he told him
all that had befallen him till he came thither; whereupon quoth the
other, "O King's son, thou hast had enough of strangerhood and its
sufferings; Alhamdolillah,—praised be Allah who hath brought thee
hither! So now do thou abide with me, that I may enjoy thy company till
I die, when thou shalt become King over this island, to which no bound
is known, and these apes thou seest are indeed skilled in all manner of
crafts; and whatso thou seekest here shalt thou find." Replied Sayf
al-Muluk, "O my brother I may not tarry in any place till my wish be
won, albeit I compass the whole world in pursuit thereof and make quest
of every one so peradventure Allah may bring me to my desire or my
course lead me to the place wherein is the appointed term of my days,
and I shall die my death." Then the youth turned with a sign to one of
the apes, and he went out and was absent awhile, after which he
returned with other apes girt with silken zones.[FN#411] They brought
the trays and set on near[FN#412] an hundred chargers of gold and
saucers of silver, containing all manner of meats. Then they stood,
after the manner of servants between the hands of Kings, till the youth
signalled to the Chamberlains, who sat down, and he whose wont it was
to serve stood, whilst the two Princes ate their sufficiency. Then the
apes cleared the table and brought basins and ewers of gold, and they
washed their hands in rose water; after which they set on fine sugar
and nigh forty flagons, in each a different kind of wine, and they
drank and took their pleasure and made merry and had a fine time. And
all the apes danced and gambolled before them, what while the eaters
sat at meat; which when Sayf al-Muluk saw, he marvelled at them and
forgot that which had befallen him of sufferings.—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Sayf
al-Muluk saw the gestures and gambols of the apes, he marvelled thereat
and forgot that which had betided him of strangerhood and its
sufferings. At nightfall they lighted waxen candles in candlesticks of
gold studded with gems and set on dishes of confections and fruits of
sugar-candy. So they ate; and when the hour of rest was come, the apes
spread them bedding and they slept. And when morning morrowed, the
young man arose, as was his wont, before sunrise and waking Sayf
al-Muluk said to him, "Put thy head forth of this lattice and see what
standeth beneath it." So he put out his head and saw the wide waste and
all the wold filled with apes, whose number none knew save Allah
Almighty. Quoth he, "Here be great plenty of apes, for they cover the
whole country: but why are they assembled at this hour?" Quoth the
youth, "This is their custom. Every Sabbath,[FN#413] all the apes in
the island come hither, some from two and three days' distance, and
stand here till I awake from sleep and put forth my head from this
lattice, when they kiss ground before me and go about their business."
So saying, he put his head out of the window; and when the apes saw
him, they kissed the earth before him and went their way. Sayf al-Muluk
abode with the young man a whole month when he farewelled him and
departed, escorted by a party of nigh a hundred apes, which the young
man bade escort him. They journeyed with him seven days, till they came
to the limits of their islands,[FN#414] when they took leave of him and
returned to their places, while Sayf al-Muluk fared on alone over mount
and hill, desert and plain, four months' journey, one day anhungered
and the next satiated, now eating of the herbs of the earth and then of
the fruits of the trees, till he repented him of the harm he had done
himself by leaving the young man; and he was about to retrace his steps
to him, when he saw something black afar off and said to himself, "Is
this a city or trees? But I will not turn back till I see what it is."
So he made towards it and when he drew near, he saw that it was a
palace tall of base. Now he who built it was Japhet son of Noah (on
whom be peace!) and it is of this palace that God the Most High
speaketh in His precious Book, whenas He saith, "And an abandoned well
and a high-builded palace."[FN#415] Sayf al-Muluk sat down at the gate
and said in his mind, "Would I knew what is within yonder palace and
what King dwelleth there and who shall acquaint me whether its folk are
men or Jinn? Who will tell me the truth of the case?" He sat
considering awhile, but, seeing none go in or come out, he rose and
committing himself to Allah Almighty entered the palace and walked on,
till he had counted seven vestibules; yet saw no one. Presently looking
to his right he beheld three doors, while before him was a fourth, over
which hung a curtain. So he went up to this and raising the curtain,
found himself in a great hall[FN#416] spread with silken carpets. At
the upper end rose a throne of gold whereon sat a damsel, whose face
was like the moon, arrayed in royal raiment and beautified as she were
a bride on the night of her displaying; and at the foot of the throne
was a table of forty trays spread with golden and silvern dishes full
of dainty viands. The Prince went up and saluted her, and she returned
his salam, saying, "Art thou of mankind or of the Jinn?" Replied he, "I
am a man of the best of mankind;[FN#417] for I am a King, son of a
King." She rejoined, "What seekest thou? Up with thee and eat of yonder
food, and after tell me thy past from first to last and how thou camest
hither." So he sat down at the table and removing the cover from a tray
of meats (he being hungry), ate till he was full; then washed his right
hand and going up to the throne, sat down by the damsel who asked him,
"Who art thou and what is thy name and whence comest thou and who
brought thee hither?" He answered, "Indeed my story is a long but do
thou first tell me who and what and whence thou art and why thou
dwellest in this place alone." She rejoined, "My name is Daulat
Khátun[FN#418] and I am the daughter of the King of Hind. My father
dwelleth in the Capital-city of Sarandí­b and hath a great and goodly
garden, there is no goodlier in all the land of Hind or its
dependencies; and in this garden is a great tank. One day, I went out
into the garden with my slave-women and I stripped me naked and they
likewise and, entering the tank, fell to sporting and solacing
ourselves therein. Presently, before I could be ware, a something as it
were a cloud swooped down on me and snatching me up from amongst my
handmaids, soared aloft with me betwixt heaven and earth, saying, 'Fear
not, O Daulat Khatun, but be of good heart.' Then he flew on with me a
little while, after which he set me down in this palace and straightway
without stay or delay became a handsome young man daintily apparelled,
who said to me, 'Now dost thou know me?' Replied I, 'No, O my lord';
and he said, 'I am the Blue King, Sovran of the Jann; my father
dwelleth in the Castle Al-Kulzum[FN#419] hight, and hath under his hand
six hundred thousand Jinn, flyers and divers. It chanced that while
passing on my way I saw thee and fell in love with thee for thy lovely
form: so I swooped down on thee and snatched thee up from among the
slave-girls and brought thee to this the High-builded Castle, which is
my dwelling-place. None may fare hither be he man or be he Jinni, and
from Hind hither is a journey of an hundred and twenty years: wherefore
do thou hold that thou wilt never again behold the land of thy father
and thy mother; so abide with me here, in contentment of heart and
peace, and I will bring to thy hands whatso thou seekest.' Then he
embraced me and kissed me,"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and
ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the damsel
said to Sayf al-Muluk, "Then the King of the Jann, after he had
acquainted me with his case, embraced me and kissed me, saying, 'Abide
here and fear nothing'; whereupon he went away from me for an hour and
presently returned with these tables and carpets and furniture. He
comes to me every Third[FN#420] and abideth with me three days and on
Friday, at the time of mid-afternoon prayer, he departeth and is absent
till the following Third. When he is here, he eateth and drinketh and
kisseth and huggeth me, but doth naught else with me, and I am a pure
virgin, even as Allah Almighty created me. My father's name is Táj
al-Mulúk, and he wotteth not what is come of me nor hath he hit upon
any trace of me. This is my story: now tell me thy tale." Answered the
Prince, "My story is a long and I fear lest while I am telling it to
thee the Ifrit come." Quoth she "He went out from me but an hour before
thy entering and will not return till Third: so sit thee down and take
thine ease and hearten thy heart and tell me what hath betided thee,
from beginning to end." And quoth he, "I hear and I obey." So he fell
to telling her all that had befallen him from commencement to
conclusion but, when she heard speak of Badi'a al-Jamal, her eyes ran
over with railing tears and she cried, "O Badi'a al-Jamal, I had not
thought this of thee! Alack for our luck! O Badi'a al-Jamal, dost thou
not remember me nor say, 'My sister Daulat Khatun whither is she
gone?'" And her weeping redoubled, lamenting for that Badi'a al-Jamal
had forgotten her.[FN#421] Then said Sayf al-Muluk, "O Daulat Khatun,
thou art a mortal and she is a Jinniyah: how then can she be thy
sister?" Replied the Princess, "She is my sister by fosterage and this
is how it came about. My mother went out to solace herself in the
garden, when labour-pangs seized her and she bare me. Now the mother of
Badi'a al-Jamal chanced to be passing with her guards, when she also
was taken with travail-pains; so she alighted in a side of the garden
and there brought forth Badi'a al-Jamal. She despatched one of her
women to seek food and childbirth-gear of my mother, who sent her what
she sought and invited her to visit her. So she came to her with Badi'a
al-Jamal and my mother suckled the child, who with her mother tarried
with us in the garden two months. And before wending her ways the
mother of Badi'a al-Jamal gave my mother somewhat,[FN#422] saying,
'When thou hast need of me, I will come to thee a middlemost the
garden,' and departed to her own land; but she and her daughter used to
visit us every year and abide with us awhile before returning home.
Wherefore an I were with my mother, O Sayf al-Muluk, and if thou wert
with me in my own country and Badi'a al-Jamal and I were together as of
wont, I would devise some device with her to bring thee to thy desire
of her: but I am here and they know naught of me; for that an they
kenned what is become of me, they have power to deliver me from this
place; however, the matter is in Allah's hands (extolled and exalteth
be He!) and what can I do?" Quoth Sayf al-Muluk, "Rise and let us flee
and go whither the Almighty willeth;" but, quoth she, "We cannot do
that: for, by Allah, though we fled hence a year's journey that
accursed would overtake us in an hour and slaughter us." Then said the
Prince, "I will hide myself in his way, and when he passeth by I will
smite him with the sword and slay him." Daulat Khatun replied, "Thou
canst not succeed in slaying him save thou his soul." Asked he, "And
where is his soul?"; and she answered, "Many a time have I questioned
him thereof but he would not tell me, till one day I pressed him and he
waxed wroth with me and said to me, 'How often wilt thou ask me of my
soul? What hast thou to do with my soul?' I rejoined, 'O Hátim,[FN#423]
there remaineth none to me but thou, except Allah; and my life
dependeth on thy life and whilst thou livest, all is well for me; so,
except I care for thy soul and set it in the apple of this mine eye,
how shall I live in thine absence? An I knew where thy soul abideth, I
would never cease whilst I live, to hold it in mine embrace and would
keep it as my right eye.' Whereupon said he to me, 'What time I was
born, the astrologers predicted that I should lose my soul at the hands
of the son of a king of mankind. So I took it and set it in the crop of
a sparrow, and shut up the bird in a box. The box I set in a casket,
and enclosing this in seven other caskets and seven chests, laid the
whole in a alabastrine coffer,[FN#424] which I buried within the marge
of yon earth-circling sea; for that these parts are far from the world
of men and none of them can win hither. So now see I have told thee
what thou wouldst know, and do thou tell none thereof, for it is a
secret between me and thee.'"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Seven Hundred and Seventieth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Daulat
Khatun acquainted Sayf al-Muluk with the whereabouts of the soul of the
Jinni who had carried her off and repeated to him his speech ending
with, "And this is a secret between me and thee!" "I rejoined," quoth
she, "'To whom should I tell it, seeing that none but thou cometh
hither with whom I may talk thereof?' adding, 'By Allah, thou hast
indeed set thy soul in the strongest of strongholds to which none may
gain access! How should a man win to it, unless the impossible be
fore-ordained and Allah decree like as the astrologers predicted?'
Thereupon the Jinni, 'Peradventure one may come, having on his finger
the seal-ring of Solomon son of David (on the twain be peace!) and lay
his hand with the ring on the face of the water, saying, 'By the virtue
of the names engraven upon this ring, let the soul of such an one come
forth!' Whereupon the coffer will rise to the surface and he will break
it open and do the like with the chests and caskets, till he come to
the little box, when he will take out the sparrow and strangle it, and
I shall die.'" Then said Sayf al-Muluk, "I am the King's son of whom he
spake, and this is the ring of Solomon David-son on my finger: so rise,
let us go down to the sea-shore and see if his words be leal or
leasing!" Thereupon the two walked down to the sea-shore and the
Princess stood on the beach, whilst the Prince waded into the water to
his waist and laying his hand with the ring on the surface of the sea,
said, "By the virtue of the names and talismans engraven on this ring,
and by the might of Sulayman bid Dáúd (on whom be the Peace!), let the
soul of Hatim the Jinni, son of the Blue King, come forth!" Whereat the
sea boiled in billows and the coffer of alabaster rose to the surface.
Sayf al-Muluk took it and shattered it against the rock and broke open
the chests and caskets, till he came to the little box and drew
thereout the sparrow. Then the twain returned to the castle and sat
down on the throne; but hardly had they done this, when lo and behold!
there arose a dust-cloud terrifying and some huge thing came flying and
crying, "Spare me, O King's son, and slay me not; but make me thy
freedman, and I will bring thee to thy desire!" Quoth Daulat Khatun,
"The Jinni cometh; slay the sparrow, lest this accursed enter the
palace and take it from thee and slaughter me and slaughter thee after
me." So the Prince wrung the sparrow's neck and it died, whereupon the
Jinni fell down at the palace-door and became a heap of black ashes.
Then said Daulat Khatun, "We are delivered from the hand of yonder
accursed; what shall we do now?"; and Sayf al-Muluk replied, "It
behoveth us to ask aid of Allah Almighty who hath afflicted us; belike
He will direct us and help us to escape from this our strait." So
saying, he arose and pulling up[FN#425] half a score of the doors of
the palace, which were of sandal-wood and lign-aloes with nails of gold
and silver, bound them together with ropes of silk and
floss[FN#426]-silk and fine linen and wrought of them a raft, which he
and the Princess aided each other to hale down to the sea-shore. They
launched it upon the water till it floated and, making it fast to the
beach, returned to the palace, whence they removed all the chargers of
gold and saucers of silver and jewels and precious stones and metals
and what else was light of load and weighty of worth and freighted the
raft therewith. Then they embarked after fashioning two pieces of wood
into the likeness of paddles and casting off the rope-moorings, let the
raft drift out to sea with them, committing themselves to Allah the
Most High, who contenteth those that put their trust in Him and
disappointeth not them who rely upon Him. They ceased not faring on
thus four months until their victual was exhausted and their sufferings
waxed severe and their souls were straitened; so they prayed Allah to
vouchsafe them deliverance from that danger. But all this time when
they lay down to sleep, Sayf al-Muluk set Daulat Khatun behind him and
laid a naked brand at his back, so that, when he turned in sleep the
sword was between them.[FN#427] At last it chanced one night, when Sayf
al-Muluk was asleep and Daulat Khatun awake, that behold, the raft
drifted landwards and entered a port wherein were ships. The Princess
saw the ships and heard a man, he being the chief and head of the
captains, talking with the sailors; whereby she knew that this was the
port of some city and that they were come to an inhabited country. So
she joyed with exceeding joy and waking the Prince said to him, "Ask
the captain the name of the city and harbour." Thereupon Sayf al-Muluk
arose and said to the captain, "O my brother, how is this harbour hight
and what be the names of yonder city and its King?" Replied the
Captain, "O false face![FN#428] O frosty beard! an thou knew not the
name of this port and city, how camest thou hither?" Quoth Sayf
al-Muluk, "I am a stranger and had taken passage in a merchant ship
which was wrecked and sank with all on board; but I saved myself on a
plank and made my way hither; wherefore I asked thee the name of the
place, and in asking is no offence." Then said the captain, "This is
the city of 'Amáriyah and this harbour is called Kamí­n
al-Bahrayn."[FN#429] When the Princess heard this she rejoiced with
exceeding joy and said, "Praised be Allah!" He asked, "What is to do?";
and she answered, "O Sayf al-Muluk, rejoice in succour near hand; for
the King of this city is my uncle, my father's brother."—And Shahrazad
perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Daulat
Khatun said to Sayf al-Muluk, "Rejoice in safety near hand; for the
King of this city is my uncle, my father's brother and his name is 'Ali
al-Mulúk,"[FN#430] adding, "Say thou then to the captain, 'Is the
Sultan of the city, Ali al-Muluk, well?'" He asked but the captain was
wroth with him and cried, "Thou sayest, 'I am a stranger and never in
my life came hither.' Who then told thee the name of the lord of the
city?" When Daulat Khatun heard this, she rejoiced and knew him for
Mu'í­n al-Dí­n,[FN#431] one of her father's captains. Now he had fared
forth in search of her, after she was lost and finding her not, he
never ceased cruising till he came to her uncle's city. Then she bade
Sayf al-Muluk say to him, "O Captain Mu'in al-Din, come and speak with
thy mistress!" So he called out to him as she bade, whereat he was
wroth with exceeding wrath and answered, "O dog, O thief, O spy, who
art thou and how knowest thou me?" Then he said to one of the sailors,
"Give me an ash[FN#432]-stave, that I may go to yonder plaguing Arab
and break his head." So he tookt he stick and made for Sayf al-Muluk,
but, when he came to the raft, he saw a something, wondrous, beauteous,
which confounded his wits and considering it straitly he made sure that
it was Daulat Khatun sitting there, as she were a slice of the moon;
whereat he said to the Prince, "Who is that with thee?" Replied he, "A
damsel by name Daulat Khatun." When the captain heard the Princess's
name and knew that she was his mistress and the daughter of his King,
he fell down in a fainting-fit, and when he came to himself, he left
the raft and whatso was thereon and riding up to the palace, craved an
audience of the King; whereupon the chamberlain went in to the presence
and said, "Captain Mu'in al-Din is come to bring thee good news; so bid
he be brought in." The King bade admit him; accordingly he entered and
kissing ground[FN#433] said to him, "O King, thou owest me a gift for
glad tidings; for thy brother's daughter Daulat Khatun hath reached our
city safe and sound, and is now on a raft in the harbour, in company
with a young man like the moon on the night of its full." When the King
heard this, he rejoiced and conferred a costly robe of honour on the
captain. Then he straightway bade decorate the city in honour of the
safe return of his brother's daughter, and sending for her and Sayf
al-Muluk, saluted the twain and gave them joy of their safety; after
which he despatched a messenger to his brother, to let him know that
his daughter was found and was with him. As soon as the news reached
Taj al-Muluk he gat him ready and assembling his troops set out for his
brother's capital, where he found his daughter and they rejoiced with
exceeding joy. He sojourned with his brother a week, after which he
took his daughter and Sayf al-Muluk and returned to Sarandib, where the
Princess foregathered with her mother and they rejoiced at her safe
return; and held high festival and that day was a great day, never was
seen its like. As for Sayf al-Muluk, the King entreated him with honour
and said to him, "O Sayf al-Muluk, thou hast done me and my daughter
all this good for which I cannot requite thee nor can any requite thee,
save the Lord of the three Worlds; but I wish thee to sit upon the
throne in my stead and rule the land of Hind, for I offer thee of my
throne and kingdom and treasures and servants, all this in free gift to
thee." Whereupon Sayf al-Muluk rose and kissing the ground before the
King, thanked him and answered, "O King of the Age, I accept all thou
givest me and return it to thee in freest gift; for I, O King of the
Age, covet not sovranty nor sultanate nor desire aught but that Allah
the Most High bring me to my desire." Rejoined the King, "O Sayf
al-Muluk these my treasures are at thy disposal: take of them what thou
wilt, without consulting me, and Allah requite thee for me with all
weal!" Quoth the Prince, "Allah advance the King! There is no delight
for me in money or in dominion till I win my wish: but now I have a
mind to solace myself in the city and view its thoroughfares and
market-streets." So the King bade bring him a mare of the
thoroughbreds, saddled and bridled; and Sayf al-Muluk mounted her and
rode through the streets and markets of the city. As he looked about
him right and left, lo! his eyes fell on a young man, who was carrying
a tunic and crying it for sale at fifteen dinars: so he considered him
and saw him to be like his brother Sa'id; and indeed it was his very
self, but he was wan of blee and changed for long strangerhood and the
travails of travel, so that he knew him not. However, he said to his
attendants, "Take yonder youth and carry him to the palace where I
lodge, and keep him with you till my return from the ride when I will
question him." But they understood him to say, "Carry him to the
prison," and said in themselves "Haply this is some runaway Mameluke of
his." So they took him and bore him to the bridewell, where they laid
him in irons and left him seated in solitude, unremembered by any.
Presently Sayf al-Muluk returned to the palace, but he forgot his
brother Sa'id, and none made mention of him. So he abode in prison, and
when they brought out the prisoners, to cut ashlar from the quarries
they took Sa'id with them, and he wrought with the rest. He abode a
month's space, in this squalor and sore sorrow, pondering his case and
saying in himself, "What is the cause of my imprisonment?"; while Sayf
al-Muluk's mind was diverted from him by rejoicing and other things;
but one day, as he sat, he bethought him of Sa'id and said to his
Mamelukes, "Where is the white slave I gave into your charge on such a
day?" Quoth they, "Didst thou not bid us bear him to the bridewell?";
and quoth he, "Nay, I said not so; I bade you carry him to my palace
after the ride." Then he sent his Chamberlains and Emirs for Sa'id and
they fetched him in fetters, and loosing him from his irons set him
before the Prince, who asked him, "O young man, what countryman art
thou?"; and he answered, "I am from Egypt and my name is Sa'id, son of
Faris the Wazir." Now hearing these words Sayf al-Muluk sprang to his
feet and throwing himself off the throne and upon his friend, hung on
his neck, weeping aloud for very joy and saying, "O my brother, O
Sa'id, praise be Allah for that I see thee alive! I am thy brother Sayf
al-Muluk, son of King Asim." Then they embraced and shed tears together
and all who were present marvelled at them. After this Sayf al-Muluk
bade his people bear Sa'id to the Hammam-bath: and they did so. When he
came out, they clad him in costly clothing and carried him back to Sayf
al-Muluk who seated him on the throne beside himself. When King Taj
al-Muluk heard of the reunion of Sayf al-Muluk and his brother Sa'id,
he joyed with you exceeding and came to them, and the three sat
devising of all that had befallen them in the past from first to last.
Then said Sa'id, "O my brother, O Sayf al-Muluk, when the ship sank
with all on board I saved myself on a plank with a company of Mamelukes
and it drifted with us a whole month, when the wind cast us, by the
ordinance of Allah Almighty, upon an island. So we landed and entering
among the trees took to eating of the fruits, for we were anhungred.
Whilst we were busy eating, there fell on us unawares, folk like
Ifrits[FN#434] and springing on our shoulders rode us[FN#435] and said
to us, 'Go on with us; for ye are become our asses.' So I said to him
who had mounted me, 'What art thou and why mountest thou me?' At this
he twisted one of his legs about my neck, till I was all but dead, and
beat upon my back the while with the other leg, till I thought he had
broken my backbone. So I fell to the ground on my face, having no
strength left in me for famine and thirst. From my fall he knew that I
was hungry and taking me by the hand, led me to a tree laden with fruit
which was a pear-tree[FN#436] and said to me, 'Eat thy fill of this
tree.' So I ate till I had enough and rose to walk against my will;
but, ere I had fared afar the creature turned and leaping on my
shoulders again drove me on, now walking, now running and now trotting,
and he the while mounted on me, laughing and saying, 'Never in my life
saw I a donkey like unto thee!' We abode thus for years till, one day
of the days, it chanced that we saw there great plenty of vines,
covered with ripe fruit; so we gathered a quantity of grape-bunches and
throwing them into a pit, trod them with our feet, till the pit became
a great water-pool. Then we waited awhile and presently returning
thither, found that the sun had wroughten on the grape-juice and it was
become wine. So we used to drink it till we were drunken and our faces
flushed and we fell to singing and dancing and running about in the
merriment of drunkenness;[FN#437] whereupon our masters said to us,
'What is it that reddeneth your faces and maketh you dance and sing?'
We replied, 'Ask us not, what is your quest in questioning us hereof?'
But they insisted, saying, 'You must tell us so that we may know the
truth of the case,' till we told them how we had pressed grapes and
made wine. Quoth they, 'Give us to drink thereof'; but quoth we, 'The
grapes are spent.' So they brought us to a Wady, whose length we knew
not from its breadth nor its beginning from its end wherein were vines
each bunch of grapes on them weighing twenty pounds[FN#438] by the
scale and all within easy reach, and they said, 'Gather of these.' So
we gathered a mighty great store of grapes and finding there a big
trench bigger than the great tank in the King's garden we filled it
full of fruit. This we trod with our feet and did with the juice as
before till it became strong wine, which it did after a month;
whereupon we said to them, ''Tis come to perfection; but in what will
ye drink it?' And they replied, 'We had asses like unto you; but we ate
them and kept their heads: so give us to drink in their skulls.' We
went to their caves which we found full of heads and bones of the Sons
of Adam, and we gave them to drink, when they became drunken and lay
down, nigh two hundred of them. Then we said to one another, 'Is it not
enough that they should ride us, but they must eat us also? There is no
Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah, the Glorious, the Great!
But we will ply them with wine, till they are overcome by drunkenness,
when we will slay them and be at rest from them.' Accordingly, we awoke
them and fell to filling the skulls and gave them to drink, but they
said, 'This is bitter.' We replied, 'Why say ye 'tis bitter? Whoso
saith thus, except he drink of it ten times, he dieth the same day.'
When they heard this, they feared death and cried to us, 'Give us to
drink the whole ten times.' So we gave them to drink, and when they had
swallowed the rest of the ten draughts they waxed drunken exceedingly
and their strength failed them and they availed not to mount us.
Thereupon we dragged them together by their hands and laying them one
upon another, collected great plenty of dry vine-stalks and branches
and heaped it about and upon them: then we set fire to the pile and
stood afar off, to see what became of them."—And Shahrazad perceived
the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Sa'id
continued, "When we set fire to the pile wherein were the Ghuls, I with
the Mamelukes stood afar off to see what became of them; and, as soon
the fire was burnt out, we came back and found them a heap of ashes,
wherefore we praised Allah Almighty who had delivered us from them.
Then we went forth about the island and sought the sea-shore, where we
parted and I and two of the Mamelukes fared on till we came to a thick
copse full of fruit and there busied ourselves with eating, and behold,
presently up came a man tall of stature, long of beard and lengthy of
ear, with eyes like cressets, driving before him and feeding a great
flock of sheep.[FN#439] When he saw us he rejoiced and said to us,
'Well come, and fair welcome to you! Draw near me that I may slaughter
you an ewe of these sheep and roast it and give you to eat.' Quoth we,
'Where is thine abode?' And quoth he, 'Hard by yonder mountain; go on
towards it till ye come to a cave and enter therein, for you will see
many guests like yourselves; and do ye sit with them, whilst we make
ready for you the guest-meal.' We believed him so fared on, as he bade
us, till we came to the cavern, where we found many guests, Sons of
Adam like ourselves, but they were all blinded;[FN#440] and when we
entered, one said, 'I'm sick'; and another, 'I'm weak.' So we cried to
them, 'What is this you say and what is the cause of your sickness and
weakness?' They asked, 'Who are ye?'; and we answered, 'We are guests.'
Then said they, 'What hath made you fall into the hands of yonder
accursed? But there is no Majesty and there is no Might save in Allah,
the Glorious, the Great! This is a Ghul who devoureth the Sons of Adam
and he hath blinded us and meaneth to eat us.' Said we, 'And how did he
blind you?' and they replied, 'Even as he will blind yourselves anon.'
Quoth we, 'And how so?' And quoth they, 'He will bring you bowls of
soured milk[FN#441] and will say to you, 'Ye are weary with wayfare:
take this milk and drink it.' And when ye have drunken thereof, ye will
become blind like us.' Said I to myself, 'There is no escape for us but
by contrivance.' So I dug a hole in the ground and sat over it. After
an hour or so in came the accursed Ghul with bowls of milk, whereof he
gave to each of us, saying, 'Ye come from the desert and are athirst:
so take this milk and drink it, whilst I roast you the flesh.' I took
the cup and carried it to my mouth but emptied it into the hole; then I
cried out, 'Alas! my sight is gone and I am blind!' and clapping my
hand to my eyes, fell a-weeping and a-wailing, whilst the accursed
laughed and said, 'Fear not, thou art now become like mine other
guests.' But, as for my two comrades, they drank the milk and became
blind. Thereupon the Ghul arose and stopping up the mouth of the cavern
came to me and felt my ribs, but found me lean and with no flesh on my
bones: so he tried another and finding him fat, rejoiced. Then he
slaughtered three sheep and skinned them and fetching iron spits,
spitted the flesh thereon and set them over the fire to roast. When the
meat was done, he placed it before my comrades who ate and he with
them; after which he brought a leather-bag full of wine and drank
thereof and lay down prone and snored. Said I to myself, 'He's drowned
in sleep: how shall I slay him?' Then I bethought me of the spits and
thrusting two of them into the fire, waited till they were as red-hot
coals: whereupon I arose and girded myself and taking a spit in each
hand went up to the accursed Ghul and thrust them into his eyes,
pressing upon them with all my might. He sprang to his feet for sweet
life and would have laid hold of me; but he was blind. So I fled from
him into the inner cavern, whilst he ran after me; but I found no place
of refuge from him nor whence I might escape into the open country, for
the cave was stopped up with stones; wherefore I was bewildered and
said to the blind men, 'How shall I do with this accursed?' Replied one
of them, 'O Sa'id, with a run and a spring mount up to yonder
niche[FN#442] and thou wilt find there a sharpened scymitar of copper:
bring it to me and I will tell thee what to do.' So I clombed to the
niche and taking the blade, returned to the blind man, who said to me,
'Smite him with the sword in his middle, and he will die forthright.'
So I rushed after the Ghul, who was weary with running after me and
felt for the blind men that he might kill them and, coming up to him
smote him with the sword a single stroke across his waist and he fell
in twain. then he screamed and cried out to me, 'O man, an thou desire
to slay me, strike me a second stroke.' Accordingly, I was about to
smite him another cut; but he who had directed me to the niche and the
scymitar said, 'Smite him not a second time, for then he will not die,
but will live and destroy us.'"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She resumed, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Sa'id
continued, "Now when I struck the Ghul with the sword he cried out to
me, 'O man, an thou desire to slay me, strike me a second stroke!" I
was about so to do when he who had directed me to the scymitar said,
'Smite him not a second time, for then he will not die but will live
and destroy us!' So I held my hand as he bade me, and the Ghul died.
Then said the blind man to me, 'Open the mouth of the cave and let us
fare forth; so haply Allah may help us and bring us to rest from this
place.' And I said, 'No harm can come to us now; let us rather abide
here and repose and eat of these sheep and drink of this wine, for long
is the land.' Accordingly we tarried there two months, eating of the
sheep and of the fruits of the island and drinking the generous
grape-juice till it so chanced one day, as we sat upon the beach, we
caught sight of a ship looming large in the distance; so we made signs
for the crew and holla'd to them. They feared to draw near, knowing
that the island was inhabited by a Ghul[FN#443] who ate Adamites, and
would have sheered off; but we ran down to the marge of the sea and
made signs to them, with our turband-ends and shouted to them,
whereupon one of the sailors, who was sharp of sight, said to the rest,
"Harkye, comrades, I see these men formed like ourselves, for they have
not the fashion of Ghuls.' So they made for us, little by little, till
they drew near us in the dinghy[FN#444] and were certified that we were
indeed human beings, when they saluted us and we returned their salam
and gave them the glad tidings of the slaying of the accursed,
wherefore they thanked us. Then we carried to the ship all that was in
the cave of stuffs and sheep and treasure, together with a viaticum of
the island-fruits, such as should serve us days and months, and
embarking, sailed on with a fair breeze three days; at the end of which
the wind veered round against us and the air became exceeding dark; nor
had an hour passed before the wind drave the craft on to a rock, where
it broke up and its planks were torn asunder.[FN#445] However, the
Great God decreed that I should lay hold of one of the planks, which I
bestrode, and it bore me along two days, for the wind had fallen fair
again, and I paddled with my feet awhile, till Allah the Most High
brought me safe ashore and I landed and came to this city, where I
found myself a stranger, solitary, friendless, not knowing what to do;
for hunger was sore upon me and I was in great tribulation. Thereupon
I, O my brother, hid myself and pulling off this my tunic, carried it
to the market, saying in my mind, 'I will sell it and live on its
price, till Allah accomplish to me whatso he will accomplish.' Then I
took the tunic in my hand and cried it for sale, and the folk were
looking at it and bidding for it, when, O my brother, thou camest by
and seeing me commandedst me to the palace; but thy pages arrested and
thrust me into the prison and there I abode till thou bethoughtest thee
of me and badst bring me before thee. So now I have told thee what
befel me, and Alhamdolillah—Glorified be God—for reunion!" Much
marvelled the two Kings at Sa'id's tale and Taj al-Muluk having made
ready a goodly dwelling for Sayf al-Muluk and his Wazir, Daulat Khatun
used to visit the Prince there and thank him for his favours and talk
with him. One day, he met her and said to her, "O my lady, where is the
promise thou madest me, in the palace of Japhet son of Noah, saying,
'Were I with my people, I would make shift to bring thee to thy
desire?'" And Sa'id said to her, "O Princess, I crave thine aid to
enable him to win his will." Answered she, "Yea, verily; I will do my
endeavour for him, that he may attain his aim, if it please Allah
Almighty." And she turned to Sayf al-Muluk and said to him, "Be of good
cheer and keep thine eyes cool and clear." Then she rose and going in
to her mother, said to her, "Come with me forthright and let us purify
ourselves and make fumigations[FN#446] that Badi'a al-Jamal and her
mother may come and see me and rejoice in me." Answered the Queen,
"With love and goodly gree;" and rising, betook herself to the garden
and burnt off these perfumes which she always had by her; nor was it
long before Badi'a al-Jamal and her mother made their appearance. The
Queen of Hind foregathered with the other Queen and acquainted her with
her daughter's safe return, whereat she rejoiced; and Badi'a al-Jamal
and Daulat Khatun foregathered likewise and rejoiced in each other.
Then they pitched the pavilions[FN#447] and dressed dainty viands and
made ready the place of entertainment; whilst the two Princesses
withdrew to a tent apart and ate together and drank and made merry;
after which they sat down to converse, and Badi'a al-Jamal said, "What
hath befallen thee in thy strangerhood?" Replied Daulat Khatun, "O my
sister how sad is severance and how gladsome is reunion; ask me not
what hath befallen me! Oh, what hardships mortals suffer!" cried she,
"How so?" and the other said to her, "O my sister, I was inmured in the
High-builded Castle of Japhet son of Noah, whither the son of the Blue
King carried me off till Sayf al-Muluk slew the Jinni and brought me
back to my sire;" and she told her to boot all that the Prince had
undergone of hardships and horrors before he came to the
Castle.[FN#448] Badi'a al-Jamal marvelled at her tale and said, "By
Allah, O my sister, this is the most wondrous of wonders! This Sayf
al-Muluk is indeed a man! But why did he leave his father and mother
and betake himself to travel and expose himself to these perils?" Quoth
Daulat Khatun, "I have a mind to tell thee the first part of his
history; but shame of thee hindereth me therefrom." Quoth Badi'a
al-Jamal, "Why shouldst thou have shame of me, seeing that thou art my
sister and my bosom-friend and there is muchel a matter between thee
and me and I know thou willest me naught but well? Tell me then what
thou hast to say and be not abashed at me and hide nothing from me and
have no fear of consequences." Answered Daulat Khatun, "By Allah, all
the calamities that have betided this unfortunate have been on thine
account and because of thee!" Asked Badi'a al-Jamal, "How so, O my
sister?"; and the other answered, "Know that he saw thy portrait
wrought on a tunic which thy father sent to Solomon son of David (on
the twain be peace!) and he opened it not neither looked at it, but
despatched it, with other presents and rarities to Asim bin Safwan,
King of Egypt, who gave it, still unopened, to his son Sayf al-Muluk.
The Prince unfolded the tunic, thinking to put it on, and seeing thy
portrait, became enamoured of it; wherefore he came forth in quest of
thee, and left his folk and reign and suffered all these terrors and
hardships on thine account."—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day
and ceased to say her permitted say.

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

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Daulat Khatun
related to Badi'a al-Jamal the first part of Sayf al-Muluk's history;
how his love for her was caused by the tunic whereon her presentment
was wrought; how he went forth, passion-distraught, in quest of her;
how he forsook his people and his kingdom for her sake and how he had
suffered all these terrors and hardships on her account. When Badi'a
al-Jamal hear this, she blushed rosy red and was confounded at Daulat
Khatun and said, "Verily this may never, never be; for man accordeth
not with the Jann." Then Daulat Khatun went on to praise Sayf al-Muluk
and extol his comeliness and courage and cavalarice, and ceased not
repeating her memories of his prowess and his excellent qualities till
she ended with saying, "For the sake of Almighty Allah and of me, O
sister mine, come and speak with him, though but one word!" But Badi'a
al-Jamal cried, "By Allah, O sister mine, this that thou sayest I will
not hear, neither will I assent to thee therein;" and it was as if she
heard naught of what the other said and as if no love of Sayf al-Muluk
and his beauty and bearing and bravery had gotten hold upon her heart.
Then Daulat Khatun humbled herself and said, "O Badi'a al-Jamal, by the
milk we have sucked, I and thou, and by that which is graven on the
seal-ring of Solomon (on whom be peace!) hearken to these my words for
I pledged myself in the High-builded Castle of Japhet, to show him thy
face. So Allah upon thee, show it to him once, for the love of me, and
look thyself on him!" And she ceased not to weep and implore her and
kiss her hands and feet, till she consented and said, "For thy sake I
will show him my face once and he shall have a single glance." With
that Daulat Khatun's heart was gladdened and she kissed her hands and
feet. Then she went forth and fared to the great pavilion in the garden
and bade her slave-women spread it with carpets and set up a couch of
gold and place the wine-vessels in order; after which she went into
Sayf al-Muluk and to his Wazir Sa'id, whom she found seated in their
lodging, and gave the Prince the glad tidings of the winning of his
wish, saying, "Go to the pavilion in the garden, thou and thy brother,
and hide yourselves there from the eyes of men so none in the palace
may espy you, till I come to you with Badi'a al-Jamal." So they rose
and repaired to the appointed pavilion, where they found the couch of
gold set and furnished with cushions, and meat and wine ready served.
So they sat awhile, whilst Sayf al-Muluk bethought him of his beloved
and his breast was straitened and love and longing assailed him:
wherefore he rose and walked forth from the vestibule of the pavilion.
Sa'id would have followed him, but he said to him, "O my brother,
follow me not, but sit in thy stead till I return to thee." So Sa'id
abode seated, whilst Sayf al-Muluk went down into the garden, drunken
with the wine of desire and distracted for excess of love-longing and
passion-fire: yearning agitated him and transport overcame him and he
recited these couplets,

"O passing Fair[FN#449] I have none else but thee; * Pity this
     slave in thy love's slavery!
Thou art my search, my joy and my desire! * None save thyself
     shall love this heart of me:
Would Heaven I knew thou knewest of my wails * Night-long and
     eyelids oped by memory.
Bid sleep to sojourn on these eyen-lids * Haply in vision I thy
     sight shall see.
Show favour then to one thus love-distraught: * Save him from
     ruin by thy cruelty!
Allah increase thy beauty and thy weal; * And be thy ransom
     every enemy!
So shall on Doomsday lovers range beneath * Thy flag, and
     beauties 'neath thy banner be."

Then he wept and recited these also,

"That rarest beauty ever bides my foe * Who holds my heart and
     lurks in secresy:
Speaking, I speak of nothing save her charms * And when I'm
     dumb in heart-core woneth she."

Then he wept sore and recited the following,

"And in my liver higher flames the fire; * You are my wish and
     longsome still I yearn:
To you (none other!) bend I and I hope * (Lovers long-
     suffering are!) your grace to earn;
And that you pity me whose frame by Love * Is waste and weak
     his heart with sore concern:
Relent, be gen'rous, tender-hearted, kind: * From you I'll
     ne'er remove, from you ne'er turn!"

Then he wept and recited these also,

"Came to me care when came the love of thee, * Cruel sleep
     fled me like thy cruelty:
Tells me the messenger that thou are wroth: * Allah forfend
     what evils told me he!"

Presently Sa'id waxed weary of awaiting him and going forth in quest of
him, found him walking in the garden, distraught and reciting these two

"By Allah, by th' Almighty, by his right[FN#450] * Who read
     the Koran-Chapter 'Fátí­r[FN#451] hight;
Ne'er roam my glances o'er the charms I see; * Thy grace, rare
     beauty, is my talk by night."

So he joined him and the twain walked about the garden together
solacing themselves and ate of its fruits. Such was their case;[FN#452]
but as regards the two Princesses, they came to the pavilion and
entering therein after the eunuchs had richly furnished it, according
to command, sat down on the couch of gold, beside which was a window
that gave upon the garden. The castratos then set before them all
manner rich meats and they ate, Daulat Khatun feeding her foster-sister
by mouthfuls,[FN#453] till she was satisfied; when she called for
divers kinds of sweetmeats, and when the neutrals brought them, they
ate what they would of them and washed their hands. After this Daulat
Khatun made ready wine and its service, setting on the ewers and bowls
and she proceeded to crown the cups and give Badi'a al-Jamal to drink,
filling for herself after and drinking in turn. The Badi'a al-Jamal
looked from the window into the garden and gazed upon the fruits and
branches that were therein, till her glance fell on Sayf al-Muluk, and
she saw him wandering about the parterres, followed by Sa'id, and she
heard him recite verses, raining the while railing tears. And that
glance of eyes cost her a thousand sighs,—And Shahrazad perceived the
dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

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

She continued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when Badi'a
al-Jamal caught sight of Sayf al-Muluk as he wandered about the garden,
that glance of eyes cost her a thousand sighs, and she turned to Daulat
Khatun and said to her (and indeed the wine sported with her senses),
"O my sister, who is that young man I see in the garden, distraught,
love-abying, disappointed, sighing?" Quoth the other, "Dost thou give
me leave to bring him hither, that we may look on him?"; and quoth the
other, "An thou can avail to bring him, bring him." So Daulat Khatun
called to him, saying "O King's son, come up to us and bring us thy
beauty and thy loveliness!" Sayf al-Muluk recognised her voice and came
up into the pavilion; but no sooner had he set eyes on Badi'a al-Jamal,
than he fell down in a swoon; whereupon Daulat Khatun sprinkled on him
a little rose-water and he revived. Then he rose and kissed ground
before Badi'a al-Jamal who was amazed at his beauty and loveliness; and
Daulat Khatun said to her, "Know, O Princess, that this is Sayf
al-Muluk, whose hand saved me by the ordinance of Allah Almighty and he
it is who hath borne all manner burthens on thine account: wherefore I
would have thee look upon him with favour." Hearing this Badi'a
al-Jamal laughed and said, "And who keepeth faith, that this youth
should do so? For there is no true love in men." Cried Sayf al-Muluk,
"O Princess, never shall lack of faith be in me, and all men are not
created alike." And he wept before her and recited these verses,

"O thou, Badi'a 'l-Jamál, show thou some clemency * To one
     those lovely eyes opprest with witchery!
By rights of beauteous hues and tints thy cheeks combine * Of
     snowy white and glowing red anemone,
Punish not with disdain one who is sorely sick * By long, long
     parting waste hath waxed this frame of me:
This is my wish, my will, the end of my desire, * And Union is
     my hope an haply this may be!"

Then he wept with violent weeping; and love and longing got the mastery
over him and he greeted her with these couplets,

"Peace be to you from lover's wasted love, * All noble hearts
     to noble favour show:
Peace be to you! Ne'er fail your form my dreams; * Nor hall
     nor chamber the fair sight forego!
Of you I'm jealous: none may name your name: * Lovers to
     lovers aye should bend thee low:
So cut not off your grace from him who loves * While sickness
     wastes and sorrows overthrow.
I watch the flowery stars which frighten me; * While cark and
     care mine every night foreslow.
Nor Patience bides with me nor plan appears: * What shall I
     say when questioned of my foe?
God's peace be with you in the hour of need, * Peace sent by
     lover patient bearing woe!"

Then for the excess of his desire and ecstasy he repeated these
coupletes also,

"If I to aught save you, O lords of me, incline; * Ne'er may I
     win of you my wish, my sole design!
Who doth comprise all loveliness save only you? * Who makes
     the Doomsday dawn e'en now before these eyne?
Far be it Love find any rest, for I am one * Who lost for love
     of you this heart, these vitals mine."

When he had made an end of his verses, he wept with sore weeping and
she said to him, "O Prince, I fear to grant myself wholly to thee lest
I find in thee nor fondness nor affection; for oftentimes man's
fidelity is small and his perfidy is great and thou knowest how the
lord Solomon, son of David (on whom be the Peace!), took Bilkis to his
love but, whenas he saw another fairer than she, turned from her
thereto." Sayf al-Muluk replied, "O my eye and O my soul, Allah hath
not made all men alike, and I, Inshallah, will keep my troth and die
beneath thy feet. Soon shalt thou see what I will do in accordance with
my words, and for whatso I say Allah is my warrant." Quoth Badi'a
al-Jamal, "Sit and be of good heart and swear to me by the right of thy
Faith and let us covenant together that each will not be false to
other; and whichever of us breaketh faith may Almighty Allah punish!"
At these words he sat down and set his hand in her hand and they sware
each to other that neither of them would ever prefer to the other any
one, either of man or of the Jann. Then they embraced for a whole hour
and wept for excess of their joy, whilst passion overcame Sayf al-Muluk
and he recited these couplets,

"I weep for longing love's own ardency * To her who claims the
     heart and soul of me.
And sore's my sorrow parted long from you, * And short's my
     arm to reach the prize I see;
And mourning grief for what my patience marred * To blamer's
     eye unveiled my secresy;
And waxed strait that whilome was so wide * Patience nor force
     remains nor power to dree.
Would Heaven I knew if God will ever deign to join * Our
     lives, and from our cark and care and grief set free!"

After this mutual troth-plighting, Sayf al-Muluk arose and walked in
the garden and Badi'a al-Jamal arose also and went forth also afoot
followed by a slave-girl bearing somewhat of food and a flask[FN#454]
of wine. The Princess sat down and the damsel set the meat and wine
before her: nor remained they long ere they were joined by Sayf
al-Muluk, who was received with greeting and the two embraced and sat
them down.—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say
her permitted say.

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

She pursued, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that having
provided food and wine, Badi'a al-Jamal met Sayf al-Muluk with
greetings, and the twain having embraced and kissed sat them down
awhile to eat and drink. Then said she to him, "O King's son, thou must
now go to the garden of Iram, where dwelleth my grandmother, and seek
her consent to our marriage. My slave-girl Marjánah will convey thee
thither and as thou farest therein thou wilt see a great pavilion of
red satin, lined with green silk. Enter the pavilion heartening thyself
and thou wilt see inside it an ancient dame sitting on a couch of red
gold set with pearls and jewels. Salute her with respect and courtesy:
then look at the foot of the couch, where thou wilt descry a pair of
sandals[FN#455] of cloth interwoven with bars of gold, embroidered with
jewels. Take them and kiss them and lay them on thy head[FN#456]; then
put them under thy right armpit and stand before the old woman, in
silence and with thy head bowed down. If she ask thee, 'Who art thou
and how camest thou hither and who led thee to this land? And why hast
thou taken up the sandals?' make her no answer, but abide silent till
Marjanah enter, when she will speak with her and seek to win her aproof
for thee and cause her look on thee with consent; so haply Allah
Almight may incline her heart to thee and she may grant thee thy wish."
Then she called the handmaid Marjanah hight and said to her, "As thou
lovest me, do my errand this day and be not neglectful therein! An thou
acccomplish it, thou shalt be a free woman for the sake of Allah
Almighty, and I will deal honourably by thee with gifts and there shall
be none dearer to me than thou, nor will I discover my secrets to any
save thee. So, by my love for thee, fulfil this my need and be not
slothful therein." Replied Marjanah, "O my lady and light of mine eyes,
tell me what is it thou requirest of me, that I may accomplish it with
both mine eyes." Badi'a rejoined, "Take this mortal on thy shoulders
and bear him to the bloom-garden of Iram and the pavilion of my
grandmother, my father's mother, and be careful of his safety. When
thou hast brought him into her presence and seest him take the slippers
and do them homage, and hearest her ask him, saying, 'Whence art thou
and by what road art come and who led thee to this land, and why hast
thou taken up the sandals and what is thy need that I give heed to it?'
do thou come forward in haste and salute her with the salam and say to
her, 'O my lady, I am she who brought him hither and he is the King's
son of Egypt.[FN#457] 'Tis he who went to the High-builded Castle and
slew the son of the Blue King and delivered the Princess Daulat Khatun
from the Castle of Japhet son of Noah and brought her back safe to her
father: and I have brought him to thee, that he may give thee the glad
tidings of her safety: so deign thou be gracious to him.' Then do thou
say to her, 'Allah upon thee! is not this young man handsome, O my
lady?' She will reply, 'Yes'; and do thou rejoin, 'O my lady, indeed he
is complete in honour and manhood and valour and he is lord and King of
Egypt and compriseth all praiseworthy qualities.' An she ask thee,
'What is his need?' do thou make answer, 'My lady saluteth thee and
saith to thee, how long shall she sit at home, a maid and unmarried?
Indeed, the time is longsome upon her for she is as a magazine wherein
wheat is heaped up.[FN#458] What then is thine intent in leaving her
without a mate and why dost thou not marry her in thy lifetide and that
of her mother, like other girls?' If she say, 'How shall we do to marry
her? An she have any one in mind, let her tell us of him, and we will
do her will as far as may be!" do thou make answer, 'O my lady, thy
daughter saith to thee, 'Ye were minded aforetime to marry me to
Solomon (on whom be peace!) and portrayed him my portrait on a tunic.
But he had no lot in me; so he sent the tunic to the King of Egypt and
he gave it to his son, who saw my portrait figured thereon and fell in
love with me; wherefore he left his father and mother's realm and
turning away from the world and whatso is therein, went forth at a
venture, a wanderer, love-distraught, and hath borne the utmost
hardships and honours for my sake of me.' Now thou seest his beauty and
loveliness, and thy daughter's heart is enamoured of him; so if ye have
a mind to marry her, marry her to this young man and forbid her not
from him for he is young and passing comely and King of Egypt, nor wilt
thou find a goodlier than he; and if ye will not give her to him, she
will slay herself and marry none neither man nor Jinn.'" "And,"
continued Badi'a al-Jamal, "Look thou, O Marjanah, ma mie,[FN#459] how
thou mayst do with my grandmother, to win her consent, and beguile her
with soft words, so haply she may do my desire." Quoth the damsel, "O
my lady, upon my head and eyes will I serve thee and do what shall
content thee." Then she took Sayf al-Muluk on her shoulders and said to
him, "O King's son, shut thine eyes." He did so and she flew up with
him into the welkin; and after awhile she said to him, "O King's son,
open thine eyes." He opened them and found himself in a garden, which
was none other than the garden of Iram; and she showed him the pavilion
and said, "O Sayf al-Muluk, enter therein!" Thereupon he pronounced the
name of Allah Almighty and entering cast a look upon the garden, when
he saw the old Queen sitting on the couch, attended by her waiting
women. So he drew near her with courtesy and reverence and taking the
sandals bussed them and did as Badi'a al-Jamal had enjoined him. Quoth
the ancient dame, "Who art thou and what is thy country; whence comest
thou and who brought thee hither and what may be thy wish? Wherefore
dost thou take the sandals and kiss them and when didst thou ask of me
a favour which I did not grant?" With this in came Marjanah[FN#460] and
saluting her reverently and worshipfully, repeated to her what Badi'a
al-Jamal had told her; which when the old Queen heard, she cried out at
her and was wroth with her and said, "How shall there be accord between
man and Jinn?"—And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased
saying her permitted say.

End of Vol. 7

                   Arabian Nights, Volume 7

[FN#1] Mayyafarikin, whose adjective for shortness is "Fárikí­": the
place is often mentioned in The Nights as the then capital of Diyár
Bakr, thirty parasangs from Násibí­n, the classical Nisibis, between
the upper Euphrates and Tigris.

[FN#2] This proportion is singular to moderns but characterised Arab
and more especially Turcoman armies.

[FN#3] Such is the bathos caused by the Saja'-assonance: in the music
of the Arabic it contrasts strangely with the baldness of translation.
The same is the case with the Koran beautiful in the original and
miserably dull in European languages, it is like the glorious style of
the "Anglican Version" by the side of its bastard brothers in
Hindostani or Marathi; one of these marvels of stupidity translating
the "Lamb of God" by "God's little goat.

[FN#4] This incident is taken from the Life of Mohammed who, in the
"Year of Missions" (A. H. 7) sent letters to foreign potentates bidding
them embrace Al-Islam, and, his seal being in three lines,
Mohammed|Apostle|of Allah, Khusrau Parwí­z (=the Charming) was offended
because his name was placed below Mohammed's. So he tore the letter in
pieces adding, says Firdausi, these words:—

          Hath the Arab's daring performed such feat,
          Fed on camel's milk and the lizard's meat,
          That he cast on Kayánian crown his eye?
          Fie, O whirling world! on thy faith and fie!

Hearing of this insult Mohammed exclaimed, "Allah shall tear his
kingdom!" a prophecy which was of course fulfilled, or we should not
have heard of it. These lines are horribly mutilated in the Dabistan
(iii. 99).

[FN#5] This "Taklí­d" must not be translated "girt on the sword." The
Arab carries his weapon by a baldrick or bandoleer passed over his
right shoulder. In modern days the " Majdal" over the left shoulder
supports on the right hip a line of Tatárif or brass cylinders for
cartridges: the other cross- belt (Al-Masdar) bears on the left side
the Kharí­zah or bullet-pouch of hide; and the Hizám or waist-belt
holds the dagger and extra cartridges. (Pilgrimage iii. 90.)

[FN#6] Arab. "Bab," which may mean door or gate. The plural form
(Abwáb) occurs in the next line, meaning that he displayed all manner
of martial prowess.

[FN#7] Arab. "Farrásh" (also used in Persian), a man of general utility
who pitches tents, sweeps the floors, administers floggings, etc. etc.
(Pilgrimage iii. 90.)

[FN#8] i.e. the slogan-cry of "Allaho Akbar," which M. C.
Barbier de Meynard compares with the Christian "Te Deum."

[FN#9] The Anglo-Indian term for the Moslem rite of killing animals for
food. (Pilgrimage i. 377.)

[FN#10] Arab. "tawí­lan jiddan" a hideous Cairenism in these days; but
formerly used by Al-Mas'údí­ and other good writers.

[FN#11] Arab. " 'Ajwah," enucleated dates pressed together into a solid
mass so as to be sliced with a knife like cold pudding. The allusion is
to the dough-idols of the Haní­fah tribe, whose eating their gods made
the saturnine Caliph Omar laugh.

[FN#12] Mr. Payne writes "Julned." In a fancy name we must not look for
grammar, but a quiescent lám (l) followed by nún (n) is unknown to
Arabic while we find sundry cases of "lan" (fath'd lám and nún), and
Jalandah means noxious or injurious. In Oman also there was a dynasty
called Julándah. for which see Mr. Badger (xiii. and passim).

[FN#13] Doubtless for Jawan-mard—un giovane, a brave See vol. iv., p.

[FN#14] Mr. Payne transposes the distichs, making the last first. I
have followed the Arabic order finding it in the Mac. and Bul. Edits.
(ii. 129).

[FN#15] Al-Irak like Al-Yaman may lose the article in verse.

[FN#16] Arab. "Ka'ka'at": hence Jabal Ka'ka'án, the higher levels in
Meccah, of old inhabited by the Jurhamites and so called from their
clashing and jangling arms; whilst the Amalekites dwelt in the lower
grounds called Jiyád from their generous steeds. (Pilgrimage iii. 191.)

[FN#17] Al-Shara', a mountain in Arabia.

[FN#18] See vol. vi., 249. "This (mace) is a dangerous weapon when
struck on the shoulders or unguarded arm: I am convinced that a blow
with it on a head armoured with a salade (cassis cælata, a light iron
helmet) would stun a man" (says La Brocquière).

[FN#19] Oman, which the natives pronounce "Amán," is the region best
known by its capital Maskat. These are the Omana Moscha and Omanum
Emporium of Ptolemy and the Periplus. Ibn Batutah writes Ammán, but the
best dictionaries give "Oman." (N.B.—Mr. Badger, p. 1, wrongly derives
Sachalitis from "Sawáhí­ly": it is evidently "Sáhili.") The people bear
by no means the best character: Ibn Batutah (fourteenth century) says,
"their wives are most base; yet, without denying this, their husbands
express nothing like jealousy on the subject." (Lee, p. 62.)

[FN#20] The name I have said of a quasi-historical personage, son of
Joktan, the first Arabist and the founder of the Tobbá ("successor")
dynasty in Al-Yaman; while Jurham, his brother, established that of
Al-Hijaz. The name is probably chosen because well-known.

[FN#21] Arab. "Hákim": lit. one who orders; often confounded by the
unscientific with Hakí­m, doctor, a philosopher. The latter re-appears
in the Heb. Khákhám applied in modern days to the Jewish scribe who
takes the place of the Rabbi.

[FN#22] As has been seen, acids have ever been and are still
administered as counter-inebriants, while hot spices and sweets greatly
increase the effect of Bhang, opium, henbane, datura &c. The Persians
have a most unpleasant form of treating men when dead-drunk with wine
or spirits. They hang them up by the heels, as we used to do with the
drowned, and stuff their mouths with human ordure which is sure to
produce emesis.

[FN#23] Compare the description of the elephant-faced Vetála
(Kathá S.S. Fasc. xi. p. 388).

[FN#24] The lover's name Sá'ik= the Striker (with lightning);
Najmah, the beloved= the star.

[FN#25] I have modified the last three lines of the Mac. Edit. which
contain a repetition evidently introduced by the carelessness of the

[FN#26] The Hindu Charvakas explain the Triad, Bramha, Vishnu and
Shiva, by the sexual organs and upon Vishnu's having four arms they
gloss, "At the time of sexual intercourse, each man and woman has as
many." (Dabistan ii. 202.) This is the Eastern view of Rabelais' "beast
with two backs."

[FN#27] Arab. "Rabbat-i," my she Lord, fire (nár) being feminine.

[FN#28] The prose-rhyme is answerable for this galimatias.

[FN#29] A common phrase equivalent to our "started from his head."

[FN#30] Arab. "Máridúna"=rebels (against Allah and his orders).

[FN#31] Arab. Yáfis or Yáfat. He had eleven sons and was entitled Abú
al-Turk because this one engendered the Turcomans as others did the
Chinese, Scythians, Slaves (Saklab), Gog, Magog, and the Muscovites or
Russians. According to the Moslems there was a rapid falling off in
size amongst this family. Noah's grave at Karak (the Ruin) a suburb of
Zahlah, in La Brocquière's "Valley of Noah, where the Ark was built,"
is 104 ft. 10 in. Iong by 8 ft. 8 in. broad. (N.B.—It is a bit of the
old aqueduct which Mr. Porter, the learned author of the "Giant Cities
of Bashan," quotes as a "traditional memorial of primeval
giants"—talibus carduis pascuntur asini!). Nabi Ham measures only 9 ft.
6 in. between headstone and tombstone, being in fact about as long as
his father was broad.

[FN#32] See Night dcliv., vol. vii, p. 43, infra.

[FN#33] According to Turcoman legends (evidently post- Mohammedan) Noah
gave his son, Japhet a stone inscribed with the Greatest Name, and it
had the virtue of bringing on or driving off rain. The Moghuls long
preserved the tradition and hence probably the sword.

[FN#34] This expresses Moslem sentiment; the convert to Al-
Islam being theoretically respected and practically despised.
The Turks call him a "Burmá"=twister, a turncoat, and no one
either trusts him or believes in his sincerity.

[FN#35] The name of the city first appears here: it is found also in
the Bul. Edit., vol. ii. p. 132.

[FN#36] Arab. " 'Amala hí­lah," a Syro-Egyptian vulgarism.

[FN#37] i.e. his cousin, but he will not use the word.

[FN#38] Arab. "La'ab," meaning very serious use of the sword: we still
preserve the old "sword-play."

[FN#39] Arab. " Ikhsa,"  from a root meaning to drive away a dog.

[FN#40] Arab. "Hazza-hu," the quivering motion given to the "Harbak" (a
light throw-spear or javelin) before it leaves the hand.

[FN#41] Here the translator must either order the sequence of the
sentences or follow the rhyme.

[FN#42] Possibly taken from the Lions' Court in the
Alhambra=(Dár) Al-hamrá, the Red House.

[FN#43] Arab. "Sházarwán" from Pers. Shadurwán, a palace, cornice, etc.
That of the Meccan Ka'abah is a projection of about a foot broad in
pent-house shape sloping downwards and two feet above the granite
pavement: its only use appears in the large brass rings welded into it
to hold down the covering. There are two breaks in it, one under the
doorway and the other opposite Ishmael's tomb; and pilgrims are
directed during circuit to keep the whole body outside it.

[FN#44] The "Musáfahah" before noticed, vol. vi., p. 287.

[FN#45] i.e. He was confounded at its beauty.

[FN#46] Arab. "'Ají­b," punning upon the name.

[FN#47] Arab. "Zarráf" (whence our word) from "Zarf"=walking hastily:
the old "cameleopard" which originated the nursery idea of its origin.
It is one of the most timid of the antelope tribe and unfit for riding.

[FN#48] Arab. "Takht," a useful word, meaning even a saddle.
The usual term is "Haudaj"=the Anglo Indian "howdah."

[FN#49] "Thunder-King," Arab. and Persian.

[FN#50] i.e. "He who violently assaults his peers" (the best men of the
age). Batshat al- Kubrá=the Great Disaster, is applied to the unhappy
"Battle of Bedr" (Badr) on Ramazan 17, A.H. 2 (=Jan. 13, 624) when
Mohammed was so nearly defeated that the Angels were obliged to assist
him (Koran, chapts. iii. 11; i. 42; viii. 9). Mohammed is soundly rated
by Christian writers for beheading two prisoners Utbah ibn Rabí­'a who
had once spat on his face and Nazir ibn Háris who recited Persian
romances and preferred them to the "foolish fables of the Koran." What
would our forefathers have done to a man who spat in the face of John
Knox and openly preferred a French play to Pentateuch ?

[FN#51] Arab. "Jilbáb" either habergeon (mail-coat) or the buff-jacket
worn under it.

[FN#52] A favourite way, rough and ready, of carrying light weapons,
often alluded to in The Nights. So Khusrawán in Antar carried "under
his thighs four small darts, each like a blazing flame."

[FN#53] Mr. Payne very reasonably supplants here and below Fakhr Taj
(who in Night dcxxxiv is left in her father's palace and who is
reported to be dead in Night dclxvii.) by Star o' Morn. But the former
is also given in the Bul. Edit. (ii. 148), so the story teller must
have forgotten all about her. I leave it as a model specimen of Eastern

[FN#54] There is some chivalry in his unwillingness to use the magical
blade. As a rule the Knights of Romance utterly ignore fair play and
take every dirty advantage in the magic line that comes to hand.

[FN#55] Arab. "Hammál al-Hatabi"=one who carries to market the
fuel-sticks which he picks up in the waste. In the Koran (chapt. cxi.)
it is applied to Umm Jamí­l, wife of Mohammed's hostile cousin, Abd
al-Uzza, there termed Abú Lahab (Father of smokeless Flame) with the
implied meaning that she will bear fuel to feed Hell-fire.

[FN#56] Arab. "Akyál," lit. whose word (Kaul) is obeyed, a title of the
Himyarite Kings, of whom Al-Bergendi relates that one of them left an
inscription at Samarcand, which many centuries ago no man could read.
This evidently alludes to the dynasty which preceded the "Tobba" and to
No. xxiv. Shamar Yar'ash (Shamar the Palsied). Some make him son of
Malik surnamed Náshir al-Ni'am (Scatterer of Blessings) others of
Afrí­kús (No. xviii.), who, according to Al-Jannabi, Ahmad bin Yusuf
and Ibn Ibdun (Pocock, Spec. Hist. Arab.) founded the Berber (Barbar)
race, the remnants of the Causanites expelled by the "robber, Joshua
son of Nún," and became the eponymus of "Africa." This word which,
under the Romans, denoted a small province on the Northern Sea-board,
is, I would suggest, A'far-Káhi (Afar-land), the Afar being now the
Dankali race, the country of Osiris whom my learned friend, the late
Mariette Pasha, derived from the Egyptian "Punt" identified by him with
the Somali country. This would make "Africa," as it ought to be, an
Egyptian (Coptic) term.

[FN#57] Herodotus (i. 80) notes this concerning the camel. Elephants
are not allowed to walk the streets in Anglo-Indian cities, where they
have caused many accidents.

[FN#58] Arab. Wahk or Wahak, suggesting the Roman retiarius. But the
lasso pure and simple, the favourite weapon of shepherd and herdsmen
was well-known to the old Egyptians and in ancient India. It forms one
of the T-letters in the hieroglyphs.

[FN#59] Compare with this and other Arab battle-pieces the Pandit's
description in the Kathá Sarit Sagara, e.g. "Then a confused battle
arose with dint of arrow, javelin, lance, mace and axe, costing the
lives of countless soldiers (N.B.— Millions are nothing to him); rivers
of blood flowed with the bodies of elephants and horses for alligators,
with the pearls from the heads of elephants for sands and with the
heads of heroes for stones. That feast of battle delighted the flesh-
loving demons who, drunk with blood instead of wine, were dancing with
the palpitating trunks," etc.. etc. Fasc. xii. 526.

[FN#60] The giraffe is here mal-placé: it is, I repeat, one of the most
timid of the antelope tribe. Nothing can be more graceful than this
huge game as it stands under a tree extending its long and slender neck
to the foliage above it; but when in flight all the limbs seem loose
and the head is carried almost on a level with the back.

[FN#61] The fire-arms may have been inserted by the copier; the
cross-bow (Arcubalista) is of unknown antiquity. I have remarked in my
book of the Sword (p. 19) that the bow is the first crucial evidence of
the distinction between the human weapon and the bestial arm, and like
the hymen or membrane of virginity proves a difference of degree if not
of kind between man and the so-called lower animals. I note from Yule's
Marco Polo (ii., 143) " that the cross-bow was re-introduced into
European warfare during the twelfth century"; but the arbalesta was
well known to the bon roi Charlemagne (Regnier Sat. X).

[FN#62] In Al-Islam this was unjustifiable homicide, excused only
because the Kafir had tried to slay his own son. He should have been
summoned to become a tributary and then, on express refusal, he might
legally have been put to death.

[FN#63] i.e. "Rose King," like the Sikh name "Gulab Singh"=Rosewater
Lion, sounding in translation almost too absurd to be true.

[FN#64] "Repentance acquits the penitent" is a favourite and noble
saying popular in Al-Islam. It is first found in Seneca; and is
probably as old as the dawn of literature.

[FN#65] Here an ejaculation of impatience.

[FN#66] i.e. "King Intelligence": it has a ludicrous sound suggesting
only "Dandanha-i-Khirad,,=wisdom-teeth. The Mac. Edit. persistently
keeps "Ward Shah," copyist error.

[FN#67] i.e. Fakhr Taj, who had been promised him in marriage.
See Night dcxxxiii. supra, vol. vi.

[FN#68] The name does not appear till further on, after vague Eastern
fashion which, here and elsewhere I have not had the heart to adopt.
The same may be found in Ariosto, passim.

[FN#69] A town in Persian Irak, unhappily far from the "Salt sea."

[FN#70] "Earthquake son of Ennosigaius" (the Earthquake- maker).

[FN#71] Arab. "Ruba'al-Kharáb" or Ruba'al-Khálí­ (empty quarter), the
great central wilderness of Arabia covering some 50,000 square miles
and still left white on our maps. (Pilgrimage, i 14.)

[FN#72] Pers. "Life King", women also assume the title of

[FN#73] Arab. "Mujauhar": the watery or wavy mark upon Eastern blades
is called the "jauhar," lit.=jewel. The peculiarity is also called
water and grain, which gives rise to a host of double-entendres, puns,
paronomasias and conceits more or less frigid.

[FN#74] Etymologically meaning tyrants or giants; and applied to great
heathen conquerors like Nimrod and the mighty rulers of Syria, the
Anakim, Giants and other peoples of Hebrew fable. The Akásirah are the
Chosroës before noticed.

[FN#75] Arab. "Asker jarrár" lit. "drawing": so in Egyptian slang "Nás
jarrár"=folk who wish to draw your money out of your pocket, greedy

[FN#76] In Turkestan: the name means "Two lights."

[FN#77] In Armenia, mentioned by Sadik Isfaháni (Transl. p. 62).

[FN#78] This is the only ludicrous incident in the tale which justifies
Von Hammer's suspicion. Compare it with the combat between Rustam and
his son Sohráb.

[FN#79] I cannot understand why Trébutien, iii., 457, writes
this word Afba. He remarks that it is the "Oina and Riya" of
Jámí­, elegantly translated by M. de Chezy in the Journal
Asiatique, vol. 1, 144.

[FN#80] I have described this part of the Medinah Mosque in Pilgrimage
ii., 62-69. The name derives from a saying of Mohammed (of which there
are many variants), "Between my tomb and my pulpit is a garden of the
Gardens of Paradise" (Burckhardt, Arabia, p. 337). The whole Southern
portico (not only a part) now enjoys that honoured name and the tawdry
decorations are intended to suggest a parterre.

[FN#81] Mohammed's companions (Asháb), numbering some five hundred,
were divided into two orders, the Muhájirin (fugitives) or Meccans who
accompanied the Apostle to Al-Medinah (Pilgrimage ii. 138) and the
Ansár (Auxiliaries) or Medinites who invited him to their city and lent
him zealous aid (Ibid. ii. 130). The terms constantly occur in Arab

[FN#82] The "Mosque of the Troops," also called Al-Fath (victory), the
largest of the "Four Mosques:" it is still a place of pious visitation
where prayer is granted. Koran, chap. xxxiii., and Pilgrimage ii. 325.

[FN#83] Arab. "Al-Wars," with two meanings. The Alfáz Adwiyah gives
it=Kurkum, curcuma, turmeric, safran d'Inde; but popular usage assigns
it to Usfur, Kurtum or safflower (carthamus tinctorius). I saw the
shrub growing all about Harar which exports it, and it is plentiful in
Al-Yaman (Niebuhr, p. 133), where women affect it to stain the skin a
light yellow and remove freckles: it is also an internal remedy in
leprosy. But the main use is that of a dye, and the Tob stained with
Wars is almost universal in some parts of Arabia. Sonnini (p. 510)
describes it at length and says that Europeans in Egypt call it
"Parrot-seeds" because the bird loves it, and the Levant trader

[FN#84] Two men of the great 'Anazah race went forth to gather Karaz,
the fruit of the Sant (Mimosa Nilotica) both used for tanning, and
never returned. Hence the proverb which is obsolete in conversation.
See Burckhardt, Prov. 659: where it takes the place of "ad Graecas

[FN#85] Name of a desert (Mafázah) and a settlement on the
Euphrates' bank between Basrah and the site of old Kufah near
Kerbela; the well known visitation place in Babylonian Irak.

[FN#86] Of the Banu Sulaym tribe; the adjective is Sulami not

[FN#87] Arab. "Amám-ak"=before thee (in space); from the same root as
Imam=antistes, leader of prayer; and conducing to perpetual puns, e.g.
"You are Imám-i (my leader) and therefore should be Amám-i" (in advance
of me).

[FN#88] He was angry, as presently appears, because he had heard of
certain love passages between the two and this in Arabia is a dishonour
to the family.

[FN#89] Euphemy for "my daughter."

[FN#90] The Badawin call a sound dollar "Kirsh hajar" or "Riyal hajar"
(a stone dollar; but the word is spelt with the greater h).

[FN#91] Arab. Burdah and Habárah. The former often translated mantle is
a thick woollen stuff, brown or gray, woven oblong and used like a
plaid by day and by night. Mohammed's Burdah woven in his Harem and
given to the poet, Ka'ab, was 7 1/2 ft. long by 4 1/2: it is still in
the upper Serraglio of Stambul. In early days the stuff was mostly
striped; now it is either plain or with lines so narrow that it looks
like one colour. The Habarah is a Burd made in Al-Yaman and not to be
confounded with the Egyptian mantilla of like name (Lane, M. E. chapt.

[FN#92] Every Eastern city has its special title. Al-Medinah is
entitled "Al-Munawwarah" (the Illumined) from the blinding light which
surrounds the Prophet's tomb and which does not show to eyes profane
(Pilgrimage ii. 3). I presume that the idea arose from the huge lamps
of "The Garden." I have noted that Mohammed's coffin suspended by
magnets is an idea unknown to Moslems, but we find the fancy in
Al-Harawi related of St. Peter, "Simon Cephas (the rock) is in the City
of Great Rome, in its largest church within a silver ark hanging by
chains from the ceiling." (Lee, Ibn Batutah, p. 161).

[FN#93] Here the fillets are hung instead of the normal rag-strips to
denote an honoured tomb. Lane (iii. 242) and many others are puzzled
about the use of these articles. In many cases they are suspended to
trees in order to transfer sickness from the body to the tree and
whoever shall touch it. The Sawáhí­lí­ people term such articles a Keti
(seat or vehicle) for the mysterious haunter of the tree who prefers
occupying it to the patient's person. Briefly the custom still popular
throughout Arabia, is African and Fetish.

[FN#94] Al-Mas'údí­ (chap. xcv.), mentions a Hind bint Asmá and tells a
facetious story of her and the "enemy of Allah," the poet Jarir.

[FN#95] Here the old Shiah hatred of the energetic conqueror of Oman
crops out again. Hind's song is that of Maysum concerning her husband
Mu'áwiyah which Mrs. Godfrey Clark ('Ilâm-en-Nâs, p. 108) thus

     A hut that the winds make tremble
        Is dearer to me than a noble palace;
     And a dish of crumbs on the floor of my home
        Is dearer to me than a varied feast;
     And the soughing of the breeze through every crevice
        Is dearer to me than the beating of drums.

Compare with Dr. Carlyle's No. X.:—

     The russet suit of camel's hair
        With spirits light and eye serene
     Is dearer to my bosom far
        Than all the trappings of a queen, etc. etc.

And with mine (Pilgrimage iii. 262):—

     O take these purple robes away,
        Give back my cloak of camel's hair
     And bear me from this towering pile
        To where the black tents flap i' the air, etc. etc.

[FN#96] AI-Hajjaj's tribal name was Al-Thakifi or descendant of
Thakí­f. According to Al-Mas'udi, he was son of Farí­ghah (the tall
Beauty) by Yúsuf bin Ukayl the Thakafite and vint au monde tout
difforme avec l'anus obstrué. As he refused the breast, Satan, in human
form, advised suckling him with the blood of two black kids, a black
buck-goat and a black snake; which had the desired effect.

[FN#97] Trebutien, iii., 465, translates these sayings into

[FN#98] Making him a "Kawwád"=leader, i.e. pimp; a true piece of
feminine spite. But the Caliph prized Al-Hajjaj too highly to treat him
as in the text.

[FN#99] i.e. "The overflowing," with benefits; on account of his

[FN#100] The seventh Ommiade A. H. 96-99 (715-719). He died of his fine
appetite after eating at a sitting a lamb, six fowls, seventy
pomegranates, and 11 1/4 lbs. of currants. He was also proud of his
youth and beauty and was wont to say, "Mohammed was the Apostle and Abu
Bakr witness to the Truth; Omar the Discriminator and Othman the
Bashful, Mu'awiyah the Mild and Yazid the Patient; Abd al-Malik the
Administrator and Walid the Tyrant; but I am the Young King!"

[FN#101] Arab. Al-Jazí­rah, "the Island;" name of the region and the

[FN#102] i.e. "Repairer of the Slips of the Generous," an evasive
reply, which of course did not deceive the questioner.

[FN#103] Arab. "Falastí­n," now obsolete. The word has echoed far west
and the name of the noble race has been degraded to "Philister," a
bourgeois, a greasy burgher.

[FN#104] Saying, "The Peace be with thee, O Prince of True

[FN#105] Arab. "Mutanakkir," which may also mean proud or in disguise.

[FN#106] On appointment as viceroy. See vol. iii 307.

[FN#107] The custom with outgoing Governors. It was adopted by the
Spaniards and Portuguese especially in America. The generosity of
Ikrimah without the slightest regard to justice or common honesty is
characteristic of the Arab in story-books.

[FN#108] The celebrated half-way house between Jaffa and

[FN#109] Alias the Kohistan or mountain region, Susiana (Khuzistan)
whose capital was Susa; and the head-quarters of fire-worship. Azar
(fire) was the name of Abraham's father whom Eusebius calls "Athar."
(Pilgrimage iii. 336.)

[FN#110] Tenth Ommiade A.H. 105-125 (=724-743), a wise and discreet
ruler with an inclination to avarice and asceticism. According to some,
the Ommiades produced only three statesmen, Mu'awayah, Abd al-Malik and
Hisham; and the reign of the latter was the end of sage government and
wise administration.

[FN#111] About £1,250, which seems a long price; but in those days
Damascus had been enriched with the spoils of the world adjacent.

[FN#112] Eleventh Ommiade dynasty, A.H. 125-126 (=743-744). Ibn Sahl
(son of ease, i.e. free and easy) was a nickname; he was the son of
Yazí­d II. and brother of Hishám. He scandalised the lieges by his
profligacy, wishing to make the pilgrimage in order to drink upon the
Ka'abah-roof; so they attacked the palace and lynched him. His death is
supposed to have been brought about (27th of Jamáda al-Akhirah = April
16, 744) by his cousin and successor Yazí­d (No. iii.) surnamed the
Retrencher. The tale in the text speaks well for him; but generosity
amongst the Arabs covers a multitude of sins, and people say, "Better a
liberal sinner than a stingy saint."

[FN#113] The tents of black wool woven by the Badawi women are
generally supported by three parallel rows of poles lengthways and
crossways (the highest line being the central) and the covering is
pegged down. Thus the outline of the roofs forms two or more hanging
curves, and these characterise the architecture of the Tartars and
Chinese; they are still preserved in the Turkish (and sometimes in the
European) "Kiosque," and they have extended to the Brazil where the
upturned eaves, often painted vermilion below, at once attract the
traveller's notice.

[FN#114] See vol. iv., 159. The author of "Antar," known to Englishmen
by the old translation of Mr. Terrick Hamilton, secretary of Legation
at Constantinople. There is an abridgement of the forty-five volumes of
Al-Asma'i's "Antar" which mostly supplies or rather supplied the
"Antariyyah" or professional tale-tellers; whose theme was the heroic
Mulatto lover.

[FN#115] The "Dakkah" or long wooden sofa, as opposed to the "mastabah"
or stone bench, is often a tall platform and in mosques is a kind of
ambo railed round and supported by columns. Here readers recite the
Koran: Lane (M.E. chapt. iii.) sketches it in the "Interior of a

[FN#116] Alif, Ha and Waw, the first, twenty-seventh and twenty-sixth
letters of the Arabic alphabet: No. 1 is the most simple and difficult
to write caligraphically.

[FN#117] Reeds washed with gold and used for love-letters, &c.

[FN#118] Lane introduced this tale into vol. i., p. 223, notes on
chapt. iii., apparently not knowing that it was in The Nights. He gives
a mere abstract, omitting all the verse, and he borrowed it either from
the Halbat al-Kumayt (chapt. xiv.) or from Al-Mas'údí­ (chapt. cxi.).
See the French translation, vol. vi. p. 340. I am at pains to
understand why M. C. Barbier de Maynard writes "Réchid" with an
accented vowel; although French delicacy made him render, by "fils de
courtisane," the expression in the text, "O biter of thy mother's
enlarged (or uncircumcised) clitoris" (Bazar).

[FN#119] In Al-Mas'údi the Devil is "a young man fair of favour and
formous of figure," which is more appropriate to a "Tempter." He also
wears light stuffs of dyed silks.

[FN#120] It would have been more courteous in an utter stranger to say,
O my lord.

[FN#121] The Arab Tempe (of fiction, not of grisly fact).

[FN#122] These four lines are in Al-Mas'údi, chapt, cxviii. Fr. Trans.
vii. 313, but that author does not tell us who wrote them.

[FN#123] i.e. Father of Bitterness=the Devil. This legend of the Foul
Fiend appearing to Ibrahim of Mosul (and also to Isam, N. dcxcv.) seems
to have been accepted by contemporaries and reminds us of similar
visitations in Europe—notably to Dr. Faust. One can only exclaim, "Lor,
papa, what nonsense you are talking!" the words of a small girl whose
father thought proper to indoctrinate her into certain Biblical
stories. I once began to write a biography of the Devil; but I found
that European folk-lore had made such an unmitigated fool of the grand
old Typhon-Ahriman as to take away from him all human interest.

[FN#124] In Al-Mas'udi the Caliph exclaims, "Verily thou hast received
a visit from Satan!"

[FN#125] Al-Mas'udi, chapt. cxix. (Fr. transl. vii., 351) mentions the
Banu Odhrah as famed for lovers and tells the pathetic tale of 'Orwah
and 'Afrá.

[FN#126] Jamil bin Ma'amar the poet has been noticed in Vol. ii. 102;
and he has no business here as he died years before Al-Rashid was born.
The tale begins like that of Ibn Mansúr and the Lady Budúr (Night
cccxxvii.), except that Mansur does not offer his advice.

[FN#127] Arab. "Halumma," an interjection=bring! a congener of the Heb.
"Halúm"; the grammarians of Kufah and Bassorah are divided concerning
its origin.

[FN#128] Arab. "Nafs-í­" which here corresponds with our canting "the
flesh" the "Old Adam," &c.

[FN#129] Arab. "Atmárí­" used for travel. The Anglo-Americans are the
only people who have the common sense to travel (where they are not
known) in their "store clothes" and reserve the worst for where they
are known.

[FN#130] e.g. a branch or bough.

[FN#131] Arab. "Ráyah káimah," which Lane translates a "beast

[FN#132] Tying up the near foreleg just above the knee; and even with
this a camel can hop over sundry miles of ground in the course of a
night. The hobbling is shown in Lane. (Nights vol. ii., p. 46.)

[FN#133] As opposed to "Severance" in the old knightly language of
love, which is now apparently lost to the world. I tried it in the
Lyrics of Camoens and found that I was speaking a forgotten tongue,
which mightily amused the common sort of critic and reviewer.

[FN#134] More exactly three days and eight hours, after which the guest
becomes a friend, and as in the Argentine prairies is expected to do
friend's duty. The popular saying is, "The entertainment of a guest is
three days; the viaticum (jáizah) is a day and a night, and whatso
exceedeth this is alms."

[FN#135] Arab. "'Ashí­rah." Books tell us there are seven degrees of
connection among the Badawin: Sha'ab, tribe or rather race; nation (as
the Anazah) descended from a common ancestor; Kabí­lah the tribe proper
(whence les Kabyles); Fasí­lah (sept), Imarah; Ashirah (all a man's
connections); Fakhiz (lit. the thigh, i.e., his blood relations) and
Batn (belly) his kith and kin. Practically Kabí­lah is the tribe,
Ashí­rah the clan, and Bayt the household; while Hayy may be anything
between tribe and kith and kin.

[FN#136] This is the true platonic love of noble Arabs, the
Ishk 'uzrí­, noted in vol. ii., 104.

[FN#137] Arab. "'Alá raghm," a favourite term. It occurs in theology;
for instance, when the Shí­'ahs are asked the cause of such and such a
ritual distinction they will reply, "Ala raghmi 'l-Tasannun": lit.=to
spite the Sunnis.

[FN#138] In the text "Al-Kaus" for which Lane and Payne substitute a
shield. The bow had not been mentioned but— n'importe, the Arab reader
would say. In the text it is left at home because it is a cowardly,
far-killing weapon compared with sword and lance. Hence the Spaniard
calls and justly calls the knife the "bravest of arms" as it wants a
man behind it.

[FN#139] Arab. "Rahim" or "Rihm"=womb, uterine relations, pity or
sympathy, which may here be meant.

[FN#140] Reciting Fátihahs and so forth, as I have described in the
Cemetery of Al-Medinah (ii. 300). Moslems do not pay for prayers to
benefit the dead like the majority of Christendom and, according to
Calvinistic Wahhábi-ism, their prayers and blessings are of no avail.
But the mourner's heart loathes reason and he prays for his dead
instinctively like the so-termed "Protestant." Amongst the latter, by
the bye, I find four great Sommités, (1) Paul of Tarsus who protested
against the Hebraism of Peter; (2) Mohammed who protested against the
perversions of Christianity; (3) Luther who protested against Italian
rule in Germany, and lastly (4) one (who shall be nameless) that
protests against the whole business.

[FN#141] Lane transfers this to vol. i. 520 (notes to chapt. vii); and
gives a mere abstract as of that preceding.

[FN#142] We learn from Ibn Batutah that it stood South of the Great
Mosque and afterwards became the Coppersmiths' Bazar. The site was
known as Al-Khazrá (the Green) and the building was destroyed by the
Abbasides. See Defrémery and Sanguinetti, i. 206.

[FN#143] This great tribe or rather nation has been noticed before
(vol. ii. 170). The name means "Strong," and derives from one Tamim bin
Murr of the race of Adnan, nat. circ. A.D. 121. They hold the
North-Eastern uplands of Najd, comprising the great desert Al-Dahná and
extend to Al-Bahrayn. They are split up into a multitude of clans and
septs; and they can boast of producing two famous sectarians. One was
Abdullah bin Suffár, head of the Suffriyah; and the other Abdullah bin
Ibáz (Ibadh) whence the Ibází­yah heretics of Oman who long included
her princes. Mr. Palgrave wrongly writes Abadeeyah and Biadeeyah and my
"Bayázi" was an Arab vulgarism used by the Zanzibarians. Dr. Badger
rightly prefers Ibáziyah which he writes Ibâdhiyah (Hist. of the Imams,

[FN#144] Governor of Al-Medinah under Mu'awiyah and afterwards (A.H.
64-65=683-4) fourth Ommiade. Al-Siyúti (p. 216) will not account him
amongst the princes of the Faithful, holding him a rebel against
Al-Zubayr. Ockley makes Ibn al-Zubayr ninth and Marwán tenth Caliph.

[FN#145] The address, without the vocative particle, is more emphatic;
and the P.N. Mu'awiyah seems to court the omission.

[FN#146] This may also mean that the £500 were the woman's "mahr" or
marriage dowry and the £250 a present to buy the father's consent.

[FN#147] Quite true to nature. See an account of the quasi- epileptic
fits to which Syrians are subject and by them called Al-Wahtah in "The
Inner Life of Syria," i. 233.

[FN#148] Arab. "Wayha-k" here equivalent to Wayla-k. M. C. Barbier de
Meynard renders the first "mon ami" and the second "misérable."

[FN#149] This is an instance when the article (Al) is correctly used
with one proper name and not with another. Al- Kumayt (P. N. of poet)
lit. means a bay horse with black points: Nasr is victory.

[FN#150] This anecdote, which reads like truth, is ample set off for a
cart-load of abuse of women. But even the Hindus, determined
misogynists in books, sometimes relent. Says the Katha Sarit Sagara:
"So you see, King, honourable matrons are devoted to their husbands,
and it is not the case that all women are always bad" (ii. 624). Let me
hope that after all this Mistress Su'ad did not lead her husband a
hardish life.

[FN#151] Al-Khalí­'a has been explained in vol. i. 311 {Vol 1, FN#633}:
 the translation of Al-Mas'udi (vi. 10) renders it "scélérat." Abú Alí­
al-Husayn the Wag was a Bassorite and a worthy companion of Abu Nowas
the Debauchee; but he adorned the Court of Al-Amin the son, not of
Al-Rashid the father.

[FN#152] Governor of Bassorah, but not in Al-Husayn's day.

[FN#153] The famous market-place where poems were recited, mentioned by

[FN#154] A quarter of Bassorah.

[FN#155] Capital of Al-Yaman, and then famed for its leather and other
work (vol. v. 16).

[FN#156] The creases in the stomach like the large navel are always
insisted upon. Says the Kathá (ii. 525) "And he looked on that torrent
river of the elixir of beauty, adorned with a waist made charming by
those wave-like wrinkles," etc.

[FN#157] Arab. Sabaj (not Sabah, as the Mac. Edit. misprints it): I am
not sure of its meaning.

[FN#158] A truly Arab conceit, suggestingÂ

The music breathing from her face;

her calves moved rhythmically, suggesting the movement and consequent
sound of a musical instrument.

[FN#159] The morosa voluptas of the Catholic divines. The Sapphist
described in the text would procure an orgasm (in gloria, as the
Italians call it) by biting and rolling over the girl she loved; but by
loosening the trouser-string she evidently aims at a closer tribadism
the Arab " Musáhikah."

[FN#160] We drink (or drank) after dinner, Easterns before the meal and
half-Easterns (like the Russians) before and after. We talk of liquor
being unwholesome on an empty stomach; but the truth is that all is
purely habit. And as the Russian accompanies his Vodki with caviare,
etc., so the Oriental drinks his Raki or Mahayá (Ma al-hayát=aqua vitæ)
alternately with a Salátah, for whose composition see Pilgrimage i.
198. The Eastern practice has its advantages: it awakens the appetite,
stimulates digestion and, what Easterns greatly regard, it is
economical; half a bottle doing the work of a whole. Bhang and Kusumbá
(opium dissolved and strained through a pledget of cotton) are always
drunk before dinner and thus the "jolly" time is the preprandial, not
the postprandial.

[FN#161] "Abu al-Sakhá" (pronounced Abussakhá) = Father of munificence.

[FN#162] 'Arab. "Shammara," also used for gathering up the gown, so as
to run the faster.

[FN#163] i.e., blessing the Prophet and all True Believers (herself

[FN#164] The style of this letter is that of a public scribe in a Cairo
market-place thirty years ago.

[FN#165] i.e.. she could not help falling in love with this beauty man.

[FN#166] "Kudrat," used somewhat in the sense of our vague
"Providence." The sentence means, leave Omnipotence to manage him. Mr.
Redhouse, who forces a likeness between Moslem and Christian theology,
tells us that "Qader is unjustly translated by Fate and Destiny, an old
pagan idea abhorrent to Al-Islam which reposes on God's providence." He
makes Kazá and Kismet quasi-synonymes of "Qazá" and "Qader," the former
signifying God's decree, the latter our allotted portion, and he would
render both by dispensation. Of course it is convenient to forget the
Guarded Tablet of the learned and the Night of Power and skull-lectures
of the vulgar. The eminent Turkish scholar would also translate Salát
by worship (du'á being prayer) because it signifies a simple act of
adoration without entreaty. If he will read the Opener of the Koran,
recited in every set of prayers, he will find an especial request to be
"led to the path which is straight." These vagaries are seriously
adopted by Mr. E. J. W. Gibb in his Ottoman Poems (p. 245, etc.)
London: Trübner and Co., 1882; and they deserve, I think, reprehension,
because they serve only to mislead; and the high authority of the
source whence they come necessarily recommends them to many.

[FN#167] The reader will have noticed the likeness of this tale to that
of Ibn Mansúr and the Lady Budúr (vol. iv., 228 et seq.){Vol 4, Tale
42} For this reason Lane leaves it untranslated (iii. 252).

[FN#168] Lane also omits this tale (iii. 252). See Night dclxxxviii.,
vol. vii. p. 113 et seq., for a variant of the story.

[FN#169] Third Abbaside, A.H. 158-169 (=775-785), and father of Harun
Al-Rashid. He is known chiefly for his eccentricities, such as cutting
the throats of all his carrier-pigeons, making a man dine off marrow
and sugar and having snow sent to him at Meccah, a distance of 700

[FN#170] Arab. "Mirt"; the dictionaries give a short shift, cloak or
breeches of wool or coarse silk.

[FN#171] Arab. "Mayází­b" plur. of the Pers. Mizáb (orig.
Mí­z-i-áb=channel of water) a spout for roof-rain. That which drains
the Ka'abah on the N.-W. side is called Mizáb al-Rahmah (Gargoyle of
Mercy) and pilgrims stand under it for a douche of holy water. It is
supposed to be of gold, but really of silver gold-plated and is
described of Burckhardt and myself. (Pilgrimage iii. 164.) The length
is 4 feet 10 in.; width 9 in.; height of sides 8 in.; and slope at
mouth 1 foot 6 in long.

[FN#172]  The Mac. and Bul. Edits. have by mistake "Son of
Ishak." Lane has "Is-hak the son of Ibrahim" following
Trébutien (iii. 483) but suggests in a note the right reading
as above.

[FN#173] Again masculine for feminine.

[FN#174] There are two of this name. The Upper al-Akik contains the
whole site of Al-Medinah; the Lower is on the Meccan road about four
miles S.W. of the city. The Prophet called it "blessed" because ordered
by an angel to pray therein. The poets have said pretty things about
it, e.g.

     O friend, this is the vale Akik; here stand and strive in
     If not a very lover, strive to be by love distraught!

for whose esoteric meaning see Pilgrimage ii. 24. I passed through
Al-Akí­k in July when it was dry as summer dust and its "beautiful
trees" were mere vegetable mummies.

[FN#175] Those who live in the wet climates of the Northern temperates
can hardly understand the delight of a shower in rainless lands, like
Arabia and Nubia. In Sind we used to strip and stand in the downfall
and raise faces sky-wards to get the full benefit of the douche. In
Southern Persia food is hastily cooked at such times, wine strained,
Kaliuns made ready and horses saddled for a ride to the nearest gardens
and a happy drinking-bout under the cypresses. If a man refused, his
friends would say of him, " See how he turns his back upon the blessing
of Allah!" (like an ass which presents its tail to the weather).

[FN#176] i.e. the destruction of the Barmecides.

[FN#177] He was Wazir to the Great "Saladin" (Saláh al-Din = one
conforming with the Faith): see vol. iv. 271, where Saladin is also
entitled Al-Malik al-Nasir = the Conquering King. He was a Kurd and
therefore fond of boys (like Virgil, Horace, etc.), but that perversion
did not prevent his being one of the noblest of men. He lies in the
Great Amawi Mosque of Damascus and I never visited a tomb with more

[FN#178] Arab. "Ahassa bi'l-Shurbah :" in our idiom "he smelt a rat".

[FN#179] This and the next tale are omitted by Lane (iii. 254) on
"account of its vulgarity, rendered more objectionable by indecent
incidents." It has been honoured with a lithographed reprint at Cairo
A.H. 1278 and the Bresl. Edit. ix. 193 calls it the "Tale of Ahmad
al-Danaf with Dalí­lah."

[FN#180] "Ahmad, the Distressing Sickness," or "Calamity;" Hasan the
Pestilent and Dalí­lah the bawd. See vol. ii. 329, and vol. iv. 75.

[FN#181] A fÂtus, a foundling, a contemptible fellow.

[FN#182] In the Mac. Edit. "her husband": the end of the tale shows the
error, infra, p. 171. The Bresl. Edit., x. 195, informs us that Dalilah
was a "Faylasúfiyah"=philosopheress.

[FN#183] Arab. "Ibrí­k" usually a ewer, a spout-pot, from the Pers.
Ab-rí­z=water-pourer: the old woman thus vaunted her ceremonial purity.
The basin and ewer are called in poetry "the two rumourers," because
they rattle when borne about.

[FN#184] Khátún in Turk. is=a lady, a dame of high degree; at times as
here and elsewhere, it becomes a P. N.

[FN#185] Arab. "Maut," a word mostly avoided in the Koran and by the
Founder of Christianity.

[FN#186] Arab. "Akákí­r," drugs, spices, simples which cannot be
distinguished without study and practice. Hence the proverb
(Burckhardt, 703), Is this an art of drugs?—difficult as the druggist's

[FN#187] i.e. Beautiful as the fairy damsels who guard enchanted
treasures, such as that of Al-Shamardal (vol. vi. 221).

[FN#188] i.e. by contact with a person in a state of ceremonial
impurity; servants are not particular upon this point and "Salát
mamlúkí­yah" (Mameluke's prayers) means praying without ablution.

[FN#189] i.e. Father of assaults, burdens or pregnancies; the last
being here the meaning.

[FN#190] Ex votos and so forth.

[FN#191] Arab. "Iksah," plaits, braids, also the little gold coins and
other ornaments worn in the hair, now mostly by the middle and lower
classes. Low Europeans sometimes take advantage of the native
prostitutes by detaching these valuables, a form of "bilking" peculiar
to the Nile-Valley.

[FN#192] In Bresl. Edit. Malí­h Kawí­ (pron. 'Awi), a Cairene

[FN#193] Meaning without veil or upper clothing.

[FN#194] Arab. "Kallakás" the edible African arum before explained.
This Colocasia is supposed to bear, unlike the palm, male and female
flowers in one spathe.

[FN#195] See vol. iii. 302. The figs refer to the anus and the
pomegranates, like the sycomore, to the female parts. Me nec fæmina nec
puer, &c., says Horace in pensive mood.

[FN#196] It is in accordance to custom that the Shaykh be attended by a
half-witted fanatic who would be made furious by seeing gold and silks
in the reverend presence so coyly curtained.

[FN#197] In English, "God damn everything an inch high!"

[FN#198] Burckhardt notes that the Wali, or chief police officer at
Cairo, was exclusively termed Al-Aghá and quotes the proverb (No. 156)
"One night the whore repented and cried:—What! no Wali (Al-Aghá) to lay
whores by the heels?" Some of these Egyptian by-words are most amusing
and characteristic; but they require literal translation, not the timid
touch of the last generation. I am preparing, for the use of my friend,
Bernard Quaritch, a bonâ fide version which awaits only the promised
volume of Herr Landberg.

[FN#199] Lit. for "we leave them for the present": the formula is much
used in this tale, showing another hand, author or copyist.

[FN#200] Arab. "Uzrah."

[FN#201] i.e. "Thou art unjust and violent enough to wrong even the

[FN#202] I may note that a "donkey-boy" like our "post-boy" can be of
any age in Egypt.

[FN#203] They could legally demand to be recouped but the chief would
have found some pretext to put off payment. Such at least is the legal
process of these days.

[FN#204] i.e. drunk with the excess of his beauty.

[FN#205] A delicate way of offering a fee. When officers commanding
regiments in India contracted for clothing the men, they found these
douceurs under their dinner-napkins. All that is now changed; but I
doubt the change being an improvement: the public is plundered by a
"Board" instead of an individual.

[FN#206] This may mean, I should know her even were my eyes blue (or
blind) with cataract and the Bresl. Edit. ix. 231, reads "Ayní­"=my
eye; or it may be, I should know her by her staring, glittering, hungry
eyes, as opposed to the "Hawar" soft-black and languishing (Arab. Prov.
i. 115, and ii. 848). The Prophet said "blue-eyed (women) are of good
omen." And when one man reproached another saying "Thou art Azrak"
(blue-eyed!) he retorted, "So is the falcon!" "Zurk-an" in Kor. xx.
102, is translated by Mr. Rodwell "leaden eyes." It ought to be
blue-eyed, dim-sighted, purblind.

[FN#207] Arab, "Zalábiyah bi-'Asal."

[FN#208] Arab. "Ká'ah," their mess-room, barracks.

[FN#209] i.e. Camel shoulder-blade.

[FN#210] So in the Brazil you are invited to drink a copa d'agua and
find a splendid banquet. There is a smack of Chinese ceremony in this
practice which lingers throughout southern Europe; but the less
advanced society is, the more it is fettered by ceremony and

[FN#211] The Bresl. edit. (ix. 239) prefers these lines:—

     Some of us be hawks and some sparrow-hawks, *
          And vultures some which at carrion pike;
     And maidens deem all alike we be *
          But, save in our turbands, we're not alike.

[FN#212] Arab. Shar'a=holy law; here it especially applies to
Al-Kisás=lex talionis, which would order her eye-tooth to be torn out.

[FN#213] i.e., of the Afghans. Sulaymáni is the Egypt and Hijazi term
for an Afghan and the proverb says "Sulaymáni harámi"—the Afghan is a
villainous man. See Pilgrimage i. 59, which gives them a better
character. The Bresl. Edit. simply says, "King Sulaymán."

[FN#214] This is a sequel to the Story of Dalilah and both are highly
relished by Arabs. The Bresl. Edit. ix. 245, runs both into one.

[FN#215] Arab. "Misr" (Masr), the Capital, says Savary, applied
alternately to Memphis, Fostat and Grand Cairo each of which had a
Jí­zah (pron. Gí­zah), skirt, angle, outlying suburb.

[FN#216] For the curious street-cries of old Cairo see Lane (M. E.
chapt. xiv.) and my Pilgrimage (i. 120): here the rhymes are of Zabí­b
(raisins), habí­b (lover) and labí­b (man of sense).

[FN#217] The Mac. and Bul. Edits. give two silly couplets of moral

     Strike with thy stubborn steel, and never fear *
          Aught save the Godhead of Allmighty Might;
     And shun ill practices and never show *
          Through life but generous gifts to human sight.

The above is from the Bresl. Edit. ix. 247.

[FN#218] Arab. "Al-Khanakah" now more usually termed a
Takí­yah. (Pilgrim. i. 124.)

[FN#219] Arab. "Ka'b al-ba'í­d" (Bresl. Edit. ix. 255)=heel or ankle,
metaph. for fortune, reputation: so the Arabs say the "Ka'b of the
tribe is gone!" here "the far one"=the caravan-leader.

[FN#220] Arab. "Sharí­t," from Sharata=he Scarified; "Mishrat"=a lancet
and "Sharí­tah"=a mason's rule. Mr. Payne renders "Sharí­t" by
whinyard: it must be a chopper-like weapon, with a pin or screw
(laulab) to keep the blade open like the snap of the Spaniard's
cuchillo. Dozy explains it=epée, synonyme de Sayf.

[FN#221] Text "Dimágh," a Persianism when used for the head: the word
properly means brain or meninx.

[FN#222] They were afraid even to stand and answer this remarkable

[FN#223] Ahmad the Abortion, or the Foundling, nephew (sister's son) of
Zaynab the Coneycatcher. See supra, p. 145.

[FN#224] Here the sharp lad discovers the direction without pointing it
out. I need hardly enlarge upon the prehensile powers of the Eastern
foot: the tailor will hold his cloth between his toes and pick up his
needle with it, whilst the woman can knead every muscle and at times
catch a mosquito between the toes. I knew an officer in India whose
mistress hurt his feelings by so doing at a critical time when he
attributed her movement to pleasure.

[FN#225] Arab. "Hullah"=dress. In old days it was composed of the Burd
or Ridá, the shoulder-cloth from 6 to 9 or 10 feet long, and the Izár
or waistcloth which was either tied or tucked into a girdle of leather
or metal. The woman's waistcloth was called Nitáh and descended to the
feet while the upper part was doubled and provided with a Tikkah or
string over which it fell to the knees, overhanging the lower folds.
This doubling of the "Hujrah," or part round the waist, was called the

[FN#226] Arab. "Taghaddá," the dinner being at eleven a.m. or noon.

[FN#227] Arab. Ghandúr for which the Dictionaries give only "fat,
thick." It applies in Arabia especially to a Harámi, brigand or
freebooter, most honourable of professions, slain in foray or fray,
opposed to "Fatí­s" or carrion (the corps crévé of the Klephts), the
man who dies the straw-death. Pilgrimage iii. 66.

[FN#228] My fair readers will note with surprise how such matters are
hurried in the East. The picture is, however, true to life in lands
where "flirtation" is utterly unknown and, indeed, impossible.

[FN#229] Arab. "Zabbah," the wooden bolt (before noticed) which forms
the lock and is opened by a slider and pins. It is illustrated by Lane
(M. E. Introduction).

[FN#230] i.e. I am not a petty thief.

[FN#231] Arab. Satl=kettle, bucket. Lat. Situla (?).

[FN#232] i.e. "there is no chance of his escaping." It may also mean,
"And far from him (Hayhát) is escape."

[FN#233] Arab. "Ihtilám," the sign of puberty in boy or girl; this,
like all emissions of semen, voluntary or involuntary, requires the
Ghuzl or total ablution before prayers can be said, etc. See vol. v.
199, in the Tale of Tawaddud.

[FN#234] This is the way to take an Eastern when he tells a deliberate
lie; and it often surprises him into speaking the truth.

[FN#235] The conjunctiva in Africans is seldom white; often it is red
and more frequently yellow.

[FN#236] So in the texts, possibly a clerical error for the wine which
he had brought with the kabobs. But beer is the especial tipple of
African slaves in Egypt.

[FN#237] Arab. "Laun", prop.=color, hue; but applied to species and
genus, our "kind"; and especially to dishes which differ in appearance;
whilst in Egypt it means any dish.

[FN#238] Arab. "Zardah"=rice dressed with honey and saffron.
Vol. ii. 313. The word is still common in Turkey.

[FN#239] Arab. "Laylat Ams," the night of yesterday (Al-bárihah) not
our "last night" which would be the night of the day spoken of.

[FN#240] Arab. "Yakhní­," a word much used in Persia and India and
properly applied to the complicated broth prepared for the rice and
meat. For a good recipe see Herklots, Appendix xxix.

[FN#241] In token of defeat and in acknowledgment that she was no match
for men.

[FN#242] This is a neat touch of nature. Many a woman, even of the
world, has fallen in love with a man before indifferent to her because
he did not take advantage of her when he had the opportunity.

[FN#243] The slightest movement causes a fight at a funeral or a
wedding-procession in the East; even amongst the "mild Hindus."

[FN#244] Arab. "Al-Musrán" (plur. of "Masí­r") properly the intestines
which contain the chyle. The bag made by Ali was, in fact, a "Cundum"
(so called from the inventor, Colonel Cundum of the Guards in the days
of Charles Second) or "French letter"; une capote anglaise, a "check
upon child." Captain Grose says (Class. Dict. etc. s.v. Cundum) "The
dried gut of a sheep worn by a man in the act of coition to prevent
venereal infection. These machines were long prepared and sold by a
matron of the name of Philips at the Green Canister in Half Moon Street
in the Strand * * * Also a false scabbard over a sword and the oilskin
case for the colours of a regiment." Another account is given in the
Guide Pratique des Maladies Secrètes, Dr. G. Harris, Bruxelles.
Librairie Populaire. He calls these petits sachets de baudruche
"Candoms, from the doctor who invented them" (Littré ignores the word)
and declares that the famous Ricord compared them with a bad umbrella
which a storm can break or burst, while others term them cuirasses
against pleasure and cobwebs against infection. They were much used in
the last century. "Those pretended stolen goods were Mr. Wilkes's
Papers, many of which tended to prove his authorship of the North
Briton, No. 45, April 23, 1763, and some Cundums enclosed in an
envelope" (Records of C. of King's Bench, London, 1763). "Pour finir
l'inventaire de ces curiosités du cabinet de Madame Gourdan, il ne faut
pas omettre une multitude de redingottes appelées d'Angleterre, je ne
sais pourquois. Vous connoissez, au surplus, ces espèces de boucliers
qu'on oppose aux traits empoisonnés de l'amour; et qui n'emoussent que
ceux du plaisir." (L'Observateur Anglois, Londres 1778, iii. 69.) Again
we read:—

     "Les capotes mélancoliques
     Qui pendent chez les gros Millan (?)
     S'enflent d'elles-memes, lubriques,
     Et dechargent en se gonflant."
                                Passage Satyrique.

Also in Louis Prolat:—

"Il fuyait, me laissant une capote au cul."

The articles are now of two kinds mostly of baudruche (sheep's gut) and
a few of caout-chouc. They are made almost exclusively in the faubourgs
of Paris, giving employment to many women and young girls; Grenelle
turns out the baudruche and Grenelle and Lilas the India-rubber
article; and of the three or four makers M. Deschamps is best known.
The sheep's gut is not joined in any way but of single piece as it
comes from the animal after, of course, much manipulation to make it
thin and supple; the inferior qualities are stuck together at the
sides. Prices vary from 4 1/2 to 36 francs per gross. Those of
India-rubber are always joined at the side with a solution especially
prepared for the purpose. I have also heard of fish-bladders but can
give no details on the subject. The Cundum was unknown to the ancients
of Europe although syphilis was not: even prehistoric skeletons show
traces of its ravages.

[FN#245] Arab. "Yá Ustá" (for "Ustáz.") The Pers. term is Ustád=a
craft-master, an artisan and especially a barber. Here it is merely a
polite address.

[FN#246] In common parlance Arabs answer a question (like the classics
of Europe who rarely used Yes and No, Yea and Nay), by repeating its
last words. They have, however, many affirmative particles e.g. Ni'am
which answers a negative "Dost thou not go?"—Ni'am (Yes!); and Ajal, a
stronger form following a command, e.g. Sir (go)—Ajal, Yes verily. The
popular form is Aywá ('lláhi)=Yes, by Allah. The chief negatives are Má
and Lá, both often used in the sense of "There is not."

[FN#247] Arab. "Khalbús," prop. the servant of the Almah-girls who acts
buffoon as well as pimp. The "Maskharah" (whence our "mask")
corresponds with the fool or jester of mediæval Europe: amongst the
Arnauts he is called "Suttari" and is known by his fox's tails: he
mounts a mare, tom-toms on the kettle-drum and is generally one of the
bravest of the corps. These buffoons are noted for extreme indecency:
they generally appear in the ring provided with an enormous phallus of
whip-cord and with this they charge man, woman and child, to the
infinite delight of the public.

[FN#248] Arab. "Shúbash" pronounced in Egypt Shobash: it is the Persian
Sháh-básh lit.=be a King, equivalent to our bravo. Here, however, the
allusion is to the buffoon's cry at an Egyptian feast, "Shohbash
'alayk, yá Sáhib al-faraj,"=a present is due from thee, O giver of the
fête!" See Lane M. E. xxvii.

[FN#249] Arab. "Ka'ak al-I'd:" the former is the Arab form of the
Persian "Kahk" (still retained in Egypt) whence I would derive our word
"cake." It alludes to the sweet cakes which are served up with dates,
the quatre mendiants and sherbets during visits of the Lesser (not the
greater) Festival, at the end of the Ramazan fast. (Lane M.E. xxv.)

[FN#250] Arab. "Tásúmah," a rare word for a peculiar slipper. Dozy (s.
v.) says only, espece de chaussure, sandale, pantoufle, soulier.

[FN#251] Arab. "Ijtilá"=the displaying of the bride on her wedding
night so often alluded to in The Nights.

[FN#252] Arab. Khiskhánah; a mixed word from Klaysh=canvass or stuffs
generally and Pers. Khánah=house room. Dozy (s.v.) says armoire,

[FN#253] The Bresl. Edit. "Kamarí­yah"=Moon-like (fem.) for

[FN#254] Every traveller describes the manners and customs of dogs in
Eastern cities where they furiously attack all canine intruders. I have
noticed the subject in writing of Al-Medinah where the beasts are
confined to the suburbs. (Pilgrimage ii. 52-54.)

[FN#255] She could legally compel him to sell her; because, being an
Infidel, he had attempted to debauch a Moslemah.

[FN#256] Arab. "Haláwat wa Mulabbas"; the latter etymologically means
one dressed or clothed. Here it alludes to almonds, etc., clothed or
coated with sugar. See Dozy (s.v.) "labas."

[FN#257] Arab. "'Ubb" from a root=being long: Dozy (s.v.), says poche
au sein; Habb al-'ubb is a woman's ornament.

[FN#258] Who, it will be remembered, was Dalilah's grandson.

[FN#259] Arab. "Tábút," a term applied to the Ark of the Covenant
(Koran ii. 249), which contained Moses' rod and shoes, Aaron's mitre,
the manna-pot, the broken Tables of the Law, and the portraits of all
the prophets which are to appear till the end of time—an extensive list
for a box measuring 3 by 2 cubits. Europeans often translate it coffin,
but it is properly the wooden case placed over an honoured grave.
"Irán" is the Ark of Moses' exposure, also the large hearse on which
tribal chiefs were carried to earth.

[FN#260] i.e. What we have related is not "Gospel Truth."

[FN#261] Omitted by Lane (iii. 252) "because little more than a
repetition" of Taj al-Mulúk and the Lady Dunyá. This is true; but the
nice progress of the nurse's pimping is a well-finished picture and the
old woman's speech (infra p. 243) is a gem.

[FN#262] Artaxerxes; in the Mac. Edit. Azdashir, a misprint.

[FN#263] I use "kiss ground" as we say "kiss hands." But it must not be
understood literally: the nearest approach would be to touch the earth
with the finger-tips and apply them to the lips or brow. Amongst Hindus
the Ashtánga-prostration included actually kissing the ground.

[FN#264] The "key" is mentioned because a fee so called (miftáh) is
paid on its being handed to the new lodger. (Pilgrimage i. 62.)

[FN#265] The Koranic term for semen, often quoted.

[FN#266] Koran, xii. 31, in the story of Joseph, before noticed.

[FN#267] Probably the white woollens, so often mentioned, whose use is
now returning to Europe, where men have a reasonable fear of dyed
stuffs, especially since Aniline conquered Cochineal.

[FN#268] Arab. "samí­r," one who enjoys the musámarah or night-talk
outside the Arab tents. "Samar" is the shade of the moon, or half
darkness when only stars shine without a moon, or the darkness of a
moonless night. Hence the proverb (A. P. ii. 513) "Má af'al-hú al-samar
wa'l kamar;" I will not do it by moondarkness or by moonshine, i.e.
never. I have elsewhere remarked that "Early to bed and early to rise"
is a civilised maxim; most barbarians sit deep into the night in the
light of the moon or a camp-fire and will not rise till nearly noon.
They agree in our modern version of the old saw:—

     Early to bed and early to rise
     Makes a man surly and gives him red eyes.

The Shayks of Arab tribes especially transact most of their public
business during the dark hours.

[FN#269] Suspecting that it had been sent by some Royal lover.

[FN#270] Arab. "Rubbamá" a particle more emphatic than rubba,=perhaps,
sometimes, often.

[FN#271] "The broken (wall)" from Hatim=breaking. It fences the Hijr or
space where Ishmael is buried (vol. vi. 205); and I have described it
in Pilgrimage iii. 165.

[FN#272] Arab. "Faráis" (plur. of farí­sah): the phrase has often
occurred and is=our "trembled in every nerve." As often happens in
Arabic, it is "horsey;" alluding to the shoulder-muscles (not
shoulder-blades, Preston p. 89) between neck and flank which readily
quiver in blood-horses when excited or frightened.

[FN#273] Arab. "Fazl"=exceeding goodness as in "Fazl wa
ma'rifah"=virtue and learning.

[FN#274] Arab. "Al-Mafárik" (plur. of Mafrak),=the pole or crown of the
head, where the hair parts naturally and where baldness mostly begins.

[FN#275] Arab. "Ná'i al-maut", the person sent round to announce a
death to the friends and relations of the deceased and invite them to
the funeral.

[FN#276] Arab. "Táir al-bayn", any bird, not only the Hátim or black
crow, which announces separation. Crows and ravens flock for food to
the camps broken up for the springtide and autumnal marches, and thus
become emblems of desertion and desolation. The same birds are also
connected with Abel's burial in the Koran (v. 34), a Jewish tradition
borrowed by Mohammed. Lastly, here is a paranomasia in the words
"Ghuráb al-Bayn"=Raven of the Wold (the black bird with white breast
and red beak and legs): "Ghuráb" (Heb. Oreb) connects with
Ghurbah=strangerhood, exile, and "Bayn" with distance, interval,
disunion, the desert (between the cultivated spots). There is another
and a similar pun anent the Bán-tree; the first word meaning "he fared,
he left."

[FN#277] Arab. "Tayr," any flying thing, a bird; with true
Arab carelessness the writer waits till the tale is nearly
ended before letting us know that the birds are pigeons

[FN#278] Arab. "Karr'aynan." The Arabs say, "Allah cool thine eye,"
because tears of grief are hot and those of joy cool (Al-Asma'i);
others say the cool eye is opposed to that heated by watching; and
Al-Hariri (Ass. xxvii.) makes a scorching afternoon "hotter than the
tear of a childless mother." In the burning climate of Arabia coolth
and refrigeration are equivalent to refreshment and delight.

[FN#279] Arab. "Muunah," the "Mona" of Maroccan travellers (English not
Italian who are scandalised by "Mona") meaning the provisions supplied
gratis by the unhappy villagers to all who visit them with passport
from the Sultan. Our cousins German have lately scored a great success
by paying for all their rations which the Ministers of other nations,
England included, were mean enough to accept.

[FN#280] Arab. "Kaannahu huwa"; lit.=as he (was) he. This reminds us of
the great grammarian, Sibawayh, whose name the Persians derive from
"Apple-flavour"(Sib + bú). He was disputing, in presence of Harun
al-Rashid with a rival Al-Kisá'í­, and advocated the Basrian form,
"Fa-izá huwa hú" (behold, it was he) against the Kufan, "Fa-izá huwa
iyyáhu" (behold, it was him). The enemy overcame him by appealing to
Badawin, who spoke impurely, whereupon Sibawayh left the court, retired
to Khorasan and died, it is said of a broken heart.

[FN#281] This is a sign of the Saudáwí­ or melancholic temperament in
which black bile pre-dominates. It is supposed to cause a distaste for
society and a longing for solitude, an unsettled habit of mind and
neglect of worldly affairs. I remarked that in Arabia students are
subject to it, and that amongst philosophers and literary men of Mecca
and Al-Medinah there was hardly one who was not spoken of as a
"Saudawi." See Pilgrimage ii. 49, 50.

[FN#282] i.e. I am a servant and bound to tell thee what my orders are.

[FN#283] A touching lesson on how bribes settle matters in the

[FN#284] i.e. fresh from water (Arab. "Rutub"), before the air can
tarnish them. The pearl (margarita) in Arab. is Lu'lu'; the "unio" or
large pearl Durr, plur. Durar. In modern parlance Durr is the second
quality of the twelve into which pearls are divided.

[FN#285] i.e. the Wazir, but purposely left vague.

[FN#286] The whole of the nurse's speech is admirable: its naïve and
striking picture of conjugal affection goes far to redeem the grossness
of The Nights.

[FN#287] The bitterness was the parting in the morning.

[FN#288] English "Prin'cess," too often pronounced in French fashion

[FN#289] In dictionaries "Bán" (Anglice ben-tree) is the myrobalan
which produces gum benzoin. It resembles the tamarisk. Mr. Lyall (p. 74
Translations of Ancient Arab Poetry, Williams and Norgate, 1885), calls
it a species of Moringa, tall, with plentiful and intensely green
foliage used for comparisons on account of its straightness and
graceful shape of its branches. The nut supplies a medicinal oil.

[FN#290] A sign of extreme familiarity: the glooms are the hands and
the full moons are the eyes.

[FN#291] Arab. "Khal'a al-'izár": lit.=stripping off jaws or

[FN#292] Arab. "Shimál"=the north wind.

[FN#293] An operation well described by Juvenal—

     Illa supercilium, modicâ fuligine tactum,
     Obliquâ producit acu, pingitque, trementes
     Attolens oculos.

Sonnini (Travels in Egypt, chapt. xvi.) justly remarks that this
pencilling the angles of the eyes with Kohl, which the old Levant trade
called alquifoux or arquifoux, makes them appear large and more oblong;
and I have noted that the modern Egyptian (especially Coptic) eye, like
that of the Sphinx and the old figures looks in profile as if it were
seen in full. (Pilgrimage i. 214.)

[FN#294] The same traveller notes a singular property in the
Henna-flower that when smelt closely it exhales a "very powerful
spermatic odour," hence it became a favourite with women as the
tea-rose with us. He finds it on the nails of mummies, and identifies
it with the Kupros of the ancient Greeks (the moderns call it Kene or
Kena) and the {Bótrys tês kýproy} (Botrus cypri) of Solomon's Song (i.
14). The Hebr. is "Copher," a well-known word which the A. V.
translates by "a cluster of camphire (?) in the vineyards of En-gedi";
and a note on iv. 13 ineptly adds, "or, cypress." The Revised Edit.
amends it to "a cluster of henna-flowers." The Solomonic (?)
description is very correct; the shrub affects vineyards, and about
Bombay forms fine hedges which can be smelt from a distance.

[FN#295] Hardly the equivalent of the Arab. "Kataba" (which includes
true tattooing with needles) and is applied to painting "patches" of
blue or green colour, with sprigs and arabesques upon the arms and
especially the breasts of women. "Kataba" would also be applied to
striping the fingers with Henna which becomes a shining black under a
paste of honey, lime and sal-ammoniac. This "patching" is alluded to by
Strabo and Galen (Lane M. E. chapt. ii.); and we may note that savages
and barbarians can leave nothing of beauty unadorned; they seem to hate
a plain surface like the Hindu silversmith, whose art is shown only in

[FN#296] A violent temper, accompanied with voies de fait and personal
violence, is by no means rare amongst Eastern princesses; and terrible
tales are told in Persia concerning the daughters of Fath Ali Shah. Few
men and no woman can resist the temptations of absolute command. The
daughter of a certain Dictator all-powerful in the Argentine Republic
was once seen on horseback with a white bridle of peculiar leather; it
was made of the skin of a man who had boasted of her favours. The
slave-girls suffer first from these masterful young persons and then it
is the turn of the eunuchry.

[FN#297] A neat touch; she was too thorough-bred to care for herself

[FN#298] Here the ground or earth is really kissed.

[FN#299] Corresponding with our phrase, "His heart was in his mouth."

[FN#300] Very artful is the contrast of the love-lorn Princess's
humility with her furious behaviour, in the pride of her purity, while
she was yet a virginette and fancy free.

[FN#301] Arab. "Suhbat-hu" lit.=in company with him, a popular idiom in
Egypt and Syria. It often occurs in the Bresl. Edit.

[FN#302] In the Mac. Edit. "Shahzamán," a corruption of Sháh
Zamán=King of the Age. (See vol. i. 2)

[FN#303] For a note on this subject see vol. ii. 2.

[FN#304] i.e. bathe her and apply cosmetics to remove ail traces of

[FN#305] These pretentious and curious displays of coquetry are not
uncommon in handsome slave-girls when newly bought; and it is a kind of
pundonor to humour them. They may also refuse their favours and a
master who took possession of their persons by brute force would be
blamed by his friends, men and women. Even the most despotic of
despots, Fath Ali Shah of Persia, put up with refusals from his
slave-girls and did not, as would the mean-minded, marry them to the
grooms or cooks of the palace.

[FN#306] Such continence is rarely shown by the young Jallabs or
slave-traders; when older they learn how much money is lost with the
chattel's virginity.

[FN#307] Midwives in the East, as in the less civilised parts of the
West, have many nostrums for divining the sex of the unborn child.

[FN#308] Arabic (which has no written "g") from Pers. Gulnár
(Gul-i-anár) pomegranate-flower, the "Gulnare" of Byron who learnt his
Orientalism at the Mekhitarist (Armenian) Convent, Venice. I regret to
see the little honour now paid to the gallant poet in the land where he
should be honoured the most. The systematic depreciation was begun by
the late Mr. Thackeray, perhaps the last man to value the noble
independence of Byron's spirit; and it has been perpetuated, I regret
to see, by better judges. These critics seem wholly to ignore the fact
that Byron founded a school which covered Europe from Russia to Spain,
from Norway to Sicily, and which from England passed over to the two
Americas. This exceptional success, which has not yet fallen even to
Shakespeare's lot, was due to genius only, for the poet almost ignored
study and poetic art. His great misfortune was being born in England
under the Georgium Sidus. Any Continental people would have regarded
him as one of the prime glories of his race.

[FN#309] Arab. "Fí­ al-Kamar," which Lane renders "in the moonlight."
It seems to me that the allusion is to the Comorin Islands; but the
sequel speaks simply of an island.

[FN#310] The Mac. Edit. misprints Julnár as Julnáz (so the Bul. Edit.
ii. 233), and Lane's Jullanár is an Egyptian vulgarism. He is right in
suspecting the "White City" to be imaginary; but its sea has no
apparent connection with the Caspian. The mermen and mermaids appear to
him to be of an inferior order of the Jinn, termed Al-Ghawwásah, the
Divers, who fly through air and are made of fire which at times issues
from their mouths.

[FN#311] Arab. "  lá Kulli hál," a popular phrase, like the
Anglo-American " anyhow."

[FN#312] In the text the name does not appear till near the end of the

[FN#313] i.e. Full moon smiling.

[FN#314] These lines have occurred in vol. iii. 264. so I quote
Lane ii. 499.

[FN#315] 'These lines occurred in vol. ii. 301. I quote Mr.

[FN#316] Arab. "Khadd" = cheek from the eye-orbit to the place where
the beard grows; also applied to the side of a rough highland, the
side-planks of a litter, etc. etc.

[FN#317] The black hair of youth.

[FN#318] This manner of listening is not held dishonourable amongst
Arabs or Easterns generally; who, however, hear as little good of
themselves as Westerns declare in proverb.

[FN#319] Arab. "Hasab wa nasab," before explained as inherited degree
and acquired dignity. See vol. iv. 171.

[FN#320] Arab. "Mujájat"=spittle running from the mouth: hence Lane,
"is like running saliva," which, in poetry is not pretty.

[FN#321] Arab. and Heb. "Salmandra" from Pers. Samandal (— dar—duk—dun,
etc.), a Salamander, a mouse which lives in fire, some say a bird in
India and China and others confuse with the chameleon (Bochart Hiero.
Part ii. chapt. vi).

[FN#322] Arab. "Mahá" one of the four kinds of wild cows or bovine
antelopes, bubalus, Antelope defassa, A. Ieucoryx, etc.

[FN#323] These lines have occurred in vol. iii. 279; so I quote Lane
(iii. 274) by way of variety; although I do not like his " bowels."

[FN#324] The last verse (286) of chapt. ii. The Cow: "compelleth" in
the sense of "burdeneth."

[FN#325] Salih's speeches are euphuistic.

[FN#326]  From the Fátihah.

[FN#327] A truly Eastern saying, which ignores the "old maids" of the

[FN#328] i.e naming her before the lieges as if the speaker were her
and his superior. It would have been more polite not to have gone
beyond " the unique pearl and the hoarded jewel
:" the offensive part of the speech was using the girl's name.
[FN#329] Meaning emphatically that one and all were nobodies.

[FN#330] Arab Badr, the usual pun.

[FN#331] Arab. "Kirát" {kerátion} the bean of the Abrus precatorius,
used as a weight in Arabia and India and as a bead for decoration in
Africa. It is equal to four Kamhahs or wheat grains and about 3 grs.
avoir.; and being the twenty fourth of a miskal, it is applied to that
proportion of everything. Thus the Arabs say of a perfect man, " He is
of four-and-twenty Kirát" i.e. pure gold. See vol. iii. 239.

[FN#332] The (she) myrtle: Kazimirski (A. de Biberstein)
Dictionnaire Arabe-Francais (Pairs Maisonneuve 1867) gives
Marsí­n=Rose de Jericho: myrte.

[FN#333] Needless to note that the fowler had a right to expect a
return present worth double or treble the price of his gift. Such is
the universal practice of the East: in the West the extortioner says,
"I leave it to you, sir!"

[FN#334] And she does tell him all that the reader well knows.

[FN#335] This was for sprinkling him, but the texts omit that
operation. Arabic has distinct terms for various forms of
metamorphosis. " Naskh " is change from a lower to a higher, as beast
to man; " Maskh " (the common expression) is the reverse, " Raskh " is
from animate to inanimate (man to stone) and "Faskh" is absolute
wasting away to corruption.

[FN#336] I render this improbable detail literally: it can only mean
that the ship was dashed against a rock.

[FN#337] Who was probably squatting on his shop counter. The "Bakkál"
(who must not be confounded with the épicier), lit. "vender of herbs"
=greengrocer, and according to Richardson used incorrectly for Baddál (
?) vendor of provisions. Popularly it is applied to a seller of oil,
honey, butter and fruit, like the Ital. "Pizzicagnolo"=Salsamentarius,
and in North-West Africa to an inn-keeper.

[FN#338] Here the Shaykh is mistaken: he should have said, "The Sun in
old Persian." "Almanac" simply makes nonsense of the Arabian Circe's
name. In Arab. it is "Takwí­m," whence the Span. and Port. "Tacuino:"
in Heb. Hakamathá-Takunah=sapientia dispositionis astrorum (Asiat.
Research. iii.120).

[FN#339] i.e. for thy daily expenses.

[FN#340] Un adolescent aime toutes les femmes. Man is by nature
polygamic whereas woman as a rule is monogamic and polyandrous only
when tired of her lover. For the man, as has been truly said, loves the
woman, but the love of the woman is for the love of the man.

[FN#341] I have already noted that the heroes and heroines of Eastern
love-tales are always bonnes fourchettes: they eat and drink hard
enough to scandalise the sentimental amourist of the West; but it is
understood that this abundant diet is necessary to qualify them for the
Herculean labours of the love night.

[FN#342] Here again a little excision is necessary; the reader already
knows all about it.

[FN#343] Arab. "Hiss," prop. speaking a perception (as of sound or
motion) as opposed to "Hadas," a surmise or opinion without proof.

[FN#344] Arab. "Sawí­k," the old and modern name for native frumenty,
green grain (mostly barley) toasted, pounded, mixed with dates or sugar
and eaten on journeys when cooking is impracticable. M. C. de Perceval
(iii. 54), gives it a different and now unknown name; and Mr. Lane also
applies it to "ptisane." It named the " Day of Sawaykah " (for which
see Pilgrimage ii. 19), called by our popular authors the " War of the

[FN#345] Mr. Keightley (H. 122-24 Tales and Popular Fictions, a book
now somewhat obsolete) remarks, "There is nothing said about the bridle
in the account of the sale (infra), but I am sure that in the original
tale, Badr's misfortunes must have been owing to his having parted with
it. In Chaucer's Squier's Tale the bridle would also appear to have
been of some importance. "He quotes a story from the Notti Piacevoli of
Straparola, the Milanese, published at Venice in 1550. And there is a
popular story of the kind in Germany.

[FN#346] Here, for the first time we find the name of the mother who
has often been mentioned in the story. Faráshah is the fem. or singular
form of "Farásh," a butterfly, a moth. Lane notes that his Shaykh gives
it the very unusual sense of "a locust."

[FN#347] Punning upon Jauharah= "a jewel" a name which has an
Hibernian smack.

[FN#348] In the old version "All the lovers of the Magic Queen resumed
their pristine forms as soon as she ceased to live;" moreover, they
were all sons of kings, princes, or persons of high degree.

[FN#349] Arab. "Munádamah," = conversation over the cup (Lane), used
somewhat in the sense of "Musámarah" = talks by moonlight.

[FN#350] Arab. "Kursi," a word of many meanings; here it would allure
to the square crate-like seat of palm-fronds used by the Ráwi or public
reciter of tales when he is not pacing about the coffee-house.

[FN#351] Von Hammer remarks that this is precisely the sum paid in
Egypt for a MS. copy of The Nights.

[FN#352] Arab. "Samar," the origin of Musámarah, which see, vol. iv.

[FN#353] The pomp and circumstance, with which the tale is introduced
to the reader showing the importance attached to it. Lane, most
injudiciously I think, transfers the Proemium to a note in chapt.
xxiv., thus converting an Arabian Night into an Arabian Note.

[FN#354] 'Asim = defending (honour) or defended, son of Safwán = clear,
cold (dry). Trébutien ii. 126, has Safran.

[FN#355] Fáris = the rider, the Knight, son of Sálih = the righteous,
the pious, the just.

[FN#356] In sign of the deepest dejection, when a man would signify
that he can fall no lower.

[FN#357] Arab. Yá Khawand (in Bresl. Edit. vol. iv. 191) and fem. form
Khawandah (p. 20) from Pers. Kháwand or Kháwandagár = superior, lord,
master; Khudáwand is still used in popular as in classical Persian, and
is universally understood in Hindostan.

[FN#358] The Biblical Sheba, whence came the Queen of many
Hebrew fables.

[FN#359] These would be the interjections of the writer or
story-teller. The Mac. Edit. is here a sketch which must be filled up
by the Bresl. Edit. vol. iv. 189-318: "Tale of King Asim and his son
Sayf al-Mulúk with Badí­'a al-Jamál."

[FN#360] The oath by the Seal-ring of Solomon was the Stygian "swear"
in Fairy-land. The signet consisted of four jewels, presented by as
many angels, representing the Winds, the Birds, Earth (including sea)
and Spirits, and the gems were inscribed with as many sentences: (1) To
Allah belong Majesty and Might; (2) All created things praise the Lord;
(3) Heaven and Earth are Allah's slaves and (4) There is no god but the
God and Mohammed is His messenger. For Sakhr and his theft of the
signet see Dr. Weil's, "The Bible, the Koran, and the Talmud."

[FN#361] Trébutien (ii. 128) remarks, "Cet Assaf peut être celui auquel
David adresse plusieurs de ses psaumes, et que nos interprètes disent
avoir été son maître de chapelle (from Biblioth. Orient).

[FN#362] Mermen, monsters, beasts, etc.

[FN#363] This is in accordance with Eastern etiquette; the guest must
be fed before his errand is asked. The Porte, in the days of its pride,
managed in this way sorely to insult the Ambassadors of the most
powerful European kingdoms and the first French Republic had the honour
of abating the barbarians' nuisance. So the old Scottish Highlanders
never asked the name or clan of a chance guest, lest he prove a foe
before he had eaten their food.

[FN#364] In Bresl. Edit. (301) Kháfiyah: in Mac. Kháinah, the perfidy.

[FN#365] So in the Mac. Edit., in the Bresl. only one "Kabá" or Kaftan;
but from the sequel it seems to be a clerical error.

[FN#366] Arab. "Su'ubán" (Thu'ubán) popularly translated "basilisk."
The Egyptians suppose that when this serpent forms ring round the Ibn
'Irs (weasel or ichneumon) the latter emits a peculiar air which causes
the reptile to burst.

[FN#367] i.e. that prophesied by Solomon.

[FN#368] Arab. "Takliyah" from kaly, a fry: Lane's Shaykh explained it
as "onions cooked in clarified butter, after which they are put upon
other cooked food." The mention of onions points to Egypt as the origin
of this tale and certainly not to Arabia, where the strong-smelling
root is hated.

[FN#369] Von Hammer quotes the case of the Grand Vizier Yúsuf
throwing his own pelisse over the shoulders of the Aleppine
Merchant who brought him the news of the death of his enemy,
Jazzár Pasha.

[FN#370] This peculiar style of generosity was also the custom in
contemporary Europe.

[FN#371] Khátún, which follows the name (e.g. Hurmat Khatun), in India
corresponds with the male title Khan, taken by the Pathan Moslems (e.g.
Pí­r Khán). Khánum is the affix to the Moghul or Tartar nobility, the
men assuming a double designation e.g. Mirza Abdallah Beg. See Oriental
collections (Ouseley's) vol. i. 97.

[FN#372] Lit. "Whatso thou wouldest do that do!" a contrast with our
European laconism.

[FN#373] These are booths built against and outside the walls, made of
palm-fronds and light materials.

[FN#374] Von Hammer in Trébutien (ii. 135) says, "Such rejoicings are
still customary at Constantinople, under the name of Donánmá, not only
when the Sultanas are enceintes, but also when they are brought to bed.
In 1803 the rumour of the pregnancy of a Sultana, being falsely spread,
involved all the Ministers in useless expenses to prepare for a Donánmá
which never took place." Lane justly remarks upon this passage that the
title Sultán precedes while the feminine Sultánah follows the name.

[FN#375] These words (Bresl. Edit.) would be spoken in jest, a grim
joke enough, but showing the elation of the King's spirits.

[FN#376] A signal like a gong: the Mac. Edit. reads "Tákah," = in at
the window.

[FN#377] Sayf al-Mulúk = "Sword (Egyptian Sif, Arab. Sayf, Gr.
{xíphos}) of the Kings"; and he must not be called tout bonnement Sayf.
Sái'd = the forearm.

[FN#378] Arab. "Fakí­h" = a divine, from Fikh = theology, a man versed
in law and divinity i.e. (1) the Koran and its interpretation
comprehending the sacred ancient history of the creation and prophets
(Chapters iii., iv., v. and vi.), (2) the traditions and legends
connected with early Moslem History and (3) some auxiliary sciences as
grammar, syntax and prosody; logic, rhetoric and philosophy. See p. 18
of "El-Mas'údí­'s Historical Encyclopædia etc.," by my friend Prof.
Aloys Springer, London 1841. This fine fragment printed by the Oriental
Translation Fund has been left unfinished when the Asiatic Society of
Paris has printed in Eight Vols. 8vo the text and translation of MM.
Barbier de Meynard and Pavet de Courteille. What a national disgrace!
And the same with the mere abridgment of Ibn Batutah by Prof. Lee
(Orient. Tr. Fund 1820) when the French have the fine Edition and
translation by Defrémery and Sanguinetti with index etc. in 4 vols. 8vo
1858-59. But England is now content to rank in such matters as
encouragement of learning, endowment of research etc., into the basest
of kingdoms, and the contrast of status between the learned Societies
of London and of Paris, Berlin, Vienna or Rome is mortifying to an
Englishman—a national opprobrium.

[FN#379] Arab. "Maydán al-Fí­l," prob. for Birkat al-Fí­l, the Tank of
the Elephant before-mentioned. Lane quotes Al-Makrizi who in his Khitat
informs us that the lakelet was made about the end of the seventh
century (A.H.), and in the seventeenth year of the eighth century
became the site of the stables. The Bresl. Edit. (iv. 214) reads
"Maydan al-'Adl," prob. for Al-'Ádil the name of the King who laid out
the Maydán.

[FN#380] Arab. "Asháb al-Ziyá'," the latter word mostly signifies
estates consisting, strictly speaking of land under artificial

[FN#381] The Bresl. Edit. (iv. 215) has "Chawáshiyah" = 'Chiaush, the
Turkish word, written with the Pers. "ch," a letter which in Arabic is
supplanted by "sh," everywhere except in Morocco.

[FN#382] Arab. "Záwiyah" lit. a corner, a cell. Lane (M. E., chapt.
xxiv.) renders it "a small kiosque," and translates the famous Zawiyat
al-Umyán (Blind Men's Angle) near the south-eastern corner of the Azhar
or great Collegiate Mosque of Cairo, "Chapel of the Blind" (chapt.
ix.). In popular parlance it suggests a hermitage.

[FN#383] Arab. "Takht," a Pers. word used as more emphatic than the
Arab. Sarí­r.

[FN#384] This girding the sovereign is found in the hieroglyphs as a
peculiarity of the ancient Kings of Egypt, says Von Hammer referring
readers to Denon.

[FN#385] Arab. "Mohr," which was not amongst the gifts of Solomon in
Night dcclx. The Bresl. Edit. (p. 220) adds "and the bow," which is
also de trop.

[FN#386] Arab. "Batánah," the ordinary lining opp. to Tazrí­b, or
quilting with a layer of cotton between two folds of cloth. The idea in
the text is that the unhappy wearer would have to carry his cross (the
girl) on his back.

[FN#387] This line has occurred in Night dccxliv. supra p. 280.

[FN#388] Arab. "Mu'attik al-Rikáb" i.e. who frees those in bondage from
the yoke.

[FN#389] In the Mac. Edit. and in Trébutien (ii. 143) the King is here
called Schimakh son of Scharoukh, but elsewhere, Schohiali = Shahyál,
in the Bresl. Edit. Shahál. What the author means by "Son of 'Ád the
Greater," I cannot divine.

[FN#390] Lit. "For he is the man who can avail thereto," with the
meaning given in the text.

[FN#391] Arab. "Jazí­rat," insula or peninsula, vol. i. 2.

[FN#392] Probably Canton with which the Arabs were familiar.

[FN#393] i.e. "Who disappointeth not those who put their trust in Him."

[FN#394] Arab. "Al-Manjaní­kát" plur. of manjanik, from Gr. {Mágganon},
Lat. Manganum (Engl. Mangonel from the dim. Mangonella). Ducange
Glossarium, s.v. The Greek is applied originally to defensive weapons,
then to the artillery of the day, Ballista, catapults, etc. The kindred
Arab. form "Manjaní­n" is applied chiefly to the Noria or Persian

[FN#395] Faghfúr is the common Moslem title for the Emperors of China;
in the Kamus the first syllable is Zammated (Fugh); in Al-Mas'udi
(chapt. xiv.) we find Baghfúr and in Al-Idrisi Baghbúgh, or Baghbún. In
Al-Asma'i Bagh = god or idol (Pehlewi and Persian); hence according to
some Baghdád (?) and Bághistán a pagoda (?). Sprenger (Al-Mas'údi, p.
327) remarks that Baghfúr is a literal translation of Tien-tse and
quotes Visdelou, "pour mieux faire comprendre de quel ciel ils veulent
parler, ils poussent la généalogie (of the Emperor) plus loin. Ils lui
donnent le ciel pour père, la terre pour mère, le soleil pour frère
aîné et la lune pour sur aînée."

[FN#396] Arab. "Kayf hálak" = how de doo? the salutation of a

[FN#397] i.e. subject to the Maharajah of Hind.

[FN#398] This is not a mistake: I have seen heavy hail in
Africa, N. Lat. 4 degrees; within sight of the Equator.

[FN#399] Arab. "Harrákat," here used in the sense of smaller craft, and
presently for a cock-boat.

[FN#400] See vol. i. 138: here by way of variety I quote Mr.

[FN#401] This explains the Arab idea of the "Old Man of the Sea" in
Sindbad the Seaman (vol. vi. 50). He was not a monkey nor an unknown
monster; but an evil Jinni of the most powerful class, yet subject to
defeat and death.

[FN#402] These Plinian monsters abound in Persian literature.
For a specimen see Richardson Dissert. p. xlviii.

[FN#403] Arab. "Anyáb," plur. of "Náb" = canine tooth (eye-tooth of
man), tusks of horse and camel, etc.

[FN#404] Arab, "Kásid," the Anglo-Indian Cossid. The post is called
Barí­d from the Persian "burí­dah" (cut) because the mules used for the
purpose were dock-tailed. Barid applies equally to the post-mule, the
rider and the distance from one station (Sikkah) to another which
varied from two to six parasangs. The letter-carrier was termed
Al-Faránik from the Pers. Parwánah, a servant. In the Diwán al-Barí­d
(Post-office) every letter was entered in a Madraj or list called in
Arabic Al-Askidár from the Persian "Az Kih dárí­" = from whom hast thou

[FN#405] "Ten years" in the Bresl. Edit. iv. 244.

[FN#406] In the Bresl. Edit. (iv. 245) we find "Kalak," a raft, like
those used upon the Euphrates, and better than the "Fulk," or ship, of
the Mac. Edit.

[FN#407] Arab. "Timsah" from Coptic (Old Egypt) Emsuh or Msuh.
The animal cannot live in salt-water, a fact which proves that
the Crocodile Lakes on the Suez Canal were in old days fed by
Nile-water; and this was necessarily a Canal.

[FN#408] So in the Bresl. Edit. (iv. 245). In the Mac. text "one man,"
which better suits the second crocodile, for the animal can hardly be
expected to take two at a time.

[FN#409] He had ample reason to be frightened. The large Cynocephalus
is exceedingly dangerous. When travelling on the Gold Coast with my
late friend Colonel De Ruvignes, we suddenly came in the grey of the
morning upon a herd of these beasts. We dismounted, hobbled our nags
and sat down, sword and revolver in hand. Luckily it was feeding time
for the vicious brutes, which scowled at us but did not attack us.
During my four years' service on the West African Coast I heard enough
to satisfy me that these powerful beasts often kill men and rape women;
but I could not convince myself that they ever kept the women as

[FN#410] As we should say in English "it is a far cry to Loch
Awe": the Hindu by-word is, "Dihlí­ (Delhi) is a long way off."
See vol. i. 37.

[FN#411] Arab. "Fútah", a napkin, a waistcloth, the Indian
Zones alluded to by the old Greek travellers.

[FN#412] Arab. "Yají­ (it comes) miat khwánjah"—quite Fellah talk.

[FN#413] As Trébutien shows (ii. 155) these apes were a remnant of some
ancient tribe possibly those of Ã?d who had gone to Meccah to pray for
rain and thus escaped the general destruction. See vol. i. 65. Perhaps
they were the Jews of Aylah who in David's day were transformed into
monkeys for fishing on the Sabbath (Saturday) Koran ii. 61.

[FN#414] I can see no reason why Lane purposely changes this to "the
extremity of their country."

[FN#415] Koran xxii. 44, Mr. Payne remarks:—This absurd addition is
probably due to some copyist, who thought to show his knowledge of the
Koran, but did not understand the meaning of the verse from which the
quotation is taken and which runs thus, "How many cities have We
destroyed, whilst yet they transgressed, and they are laid low on their
own foundations and wells abandoned and high-builded palaces!" Mr. Lane
observes that the words are either misunderstood or purposely
misapplied by the author of the tale. Purposeful perversions of Holy
Writ are very popular amongst Moslems and form part of their rhetoric;
but such is not the case here. According to Von Hammer (Trébutien ii.
154), "Eastern geographers place the Bir al-Mu'utallal (Ruined Well)
and the Kasr al-Mashí­d (High-builded Castle) in the province of
Hadramaut, and we wait for a new Niebuhr to inform us what are the
monuments or the ruins so called." His text translates puits arides et
palais de plâtre (not likely!). Lane remarks that Mashí­d mostly means
"plastered," but here = Mushayyad, lofty, explained in the Jalálayn
Commentary as = rafí­'a, high-raised. The two places are also mentioned
by Al-Mas'údi; and they occur in Al-Kazwí­ni (see Night dccclviii.):
both of these authors making the Koran directly allude to them.

[FN#416] Arab. (from Pers.) "Aywán" which here corresponds with the
Egyptian "lí­wán" a tall saloon with estrades.

[FN#417] This naïve style of "renowning it" is customary in the East,
contrasting with the servile address of the subject—"thy slave" etc.

[FN#418] Daulat (not Dawlah) the Anglo-Indian Dowlat; prop. meaning the
shifts of affairs, hence, fortune, empire, kingdom. Khátún = "lady," I
have noted, follows the name after Turkish fashion.

[FN#419] The old name of Suez-town from the Greek Clysma (the
shutting), which named the Gulf of Suez "Sea of Kulzum." The ruins in
the shape of a huge mound, upon which Sá'id Pasha built a Kiosk-palace,
lie to the north of the modern town and have been noticed by me.
(Pilgrimage, Midian, etc.) The Rev. Prof. Sayce examined the mound and
from the Roman remains found in it determined it to be a fort guarding
the old mouth of the Old Egyptian Sweet-water Canal which then
debouched near the town.

[FN#420] i.e. Tuesday. See vol. iii. 249.

[FN#421] Because being a Jinniyah the foster-sister could have come to
her and saved her from old maidenhood.

[FN#422] Arab. "Hájah" properly a needful thing. This consisted
according to the Bresl. Edit. of certain perfumes, by burning which she
could summon the Queen of the Jinn.

[FN#423] Probably used in its sense of a "black crow." The Bresl. Edit.
(iv. 261) has "Khátim" (seal-ring) which is but one of its almost
innumerable misprints.

[FN#424] Here it is called "Tábik" and afterwards "Tábút."

[FN#425] i.e. raising from the lower hinge-pins. See vol. ii. 214.

[FN#426] Arab. "Abrí­sam" or "Ibrí­sam" (from Persian Abrí­sham or
Ibrí­sham) = raw silk or floss, i.e. untwisted silk.

[FN#427] This knightly practice, evidently borrowed from the
East, appears in many romances of chivalry e.g. When Sir
Tristram is found by King Mark asleep beside Ysonde (Isentt)
with drawn sword between them, the former cried:—

          Gif they weren in sinne
          Nought so they no lay.

And we are told:—

          Sir Amys and the lady bright
               To bed gan they go;
          And when they weren in bed laid,
          Sir Amys his sword out-brayed
          And held it between them two.

This occurs in the old French romance of Amys and Amyloun which is
taken into the tale of the Ravens in the Seven Wise Masters where
Ludovic personates his friend Alexander in marrying the King of Egypt's
daughter and sleeps every night with a bare blade between him and the
bride. See also Aladdin and his lamp. An Englishman remarked, "The
drawn sword would be little hindrance to a man and maid coming
together." The drawn sword represented only the Prince's honour.

[FN#428] Arab. "Ya Sáki' al-Wajh," which Lane translates by "lying" or

[FN#429] Kamí­n (in Bresl. Edit. "bayn" = between) Al-Bahrayn =
Ambuscade or lurking-place of the two seas. The name of the city in
Lane is "'Emareeych" imaginary but derived from Emarch ('imárah) =
being populous. Trébutien (ii. 161) takes from Bresl. Edit. "Amar" and
translates the port-name, "le lieu de refuge des deux mers."

[FN#430] i.e. "High of (among) the Kings." Lane proposes to read 'Ali
al-Mulk = high in dominion.

[FN#431] Pronounce Mu'inuddeen = Aider of the Faith. The Bresl. Edit.
(iv. 266) also read "Mu'in al-Riyásah" = Mu'in of the Captaincies.

[FN#432] Arab. "Shúm" = a tough wood used for the staves with which
donkeys are driven. Sir Gardner Wilkinson informed Lane that it is the

[FN#433] In Persian we find the fuller metaphorical form, "kissing the
ground of obedience."

[FN#434] For the Shaykh of the Sea(-board) in Sindbad the
Seaman see vol. vi. 50.

[FN#435] That this riding is a facetious exaggeration of the
African practice I find was guessed by Mr. Keightley.

[FN#436] Arab. "Kummasra": the root seems to be "Kamsara" = being
slender or compact.

[FN#437] Lane translates, "by reason of the exhilaration produced by
intoxication." But the Arabic here has no assonance. The passage also
alludes to the drunken habits of those blameless Ethiopians, the races
of Central Africa where, after midday a chief is rarely if ever found
sober. We hear much about drink in England but Englishmen are mere
babes compared with these stalwart Negroes. In Unyamwezi I found all
the standing bedsteads of pole-sleepers and bark-slabs disposed at an
angle of about 20 degrees for the purpose of draining off the huge
pottle-fulls of Pombe (Osirian beer) drained by the occupants; and,
comminxit lectum potus might be said of the whole male population.

[FN#438] This is not exaggerated. When at Hebron I saw the biblical
spectacle of two men carrying a huge bunch slung to a pole, not so much
for the weight as to keep the grapes from injury.

[FN#439] The Mac. and Bul. Edits. add, "and with him a host of
others after his kind"; but these words are omitted by the
Bresl. Edit. and apparently from the sequel there was only one

[FN#440] Probably alluding to the most barbarous Persian practice of
plucking or tearing out the eyes from their sockets. See Sir John
Malcolm's description of the capture of Kirmán and Morier (in Zohrab,
the hostage) for the wholesale blinding of the Asterabadian by the
Eunuch-King Agha Mohammed Shah. I may note that the mediæval Italian
practice called bacinare, or scorching with red-hot basins, came from

[FN#441] Arab. "Laban" as opposed to "Halí­b": in Night dcclxxiv.
(infra p. 365) the former is used for sweet milk, and other passages
could be cited. I have noted that all galaktophagi, or milk-drinking
races, prefer the artificially soured to the sweet, choosing the
fermentation to take place outside rather than inside their stomachs.
Amongst the Somal I never saw man, woman or child drink a drop of fresh
milk; and they offered considerable opposition to our heating it for

[FN#442] Arab. "Tákah" not "an aperture" as Lane has it, but an arched
hollow in the wall.

[FN#443] In Trébutien (ii. 168) the cannibal is called "Goul
Eli-Fenioun" and Von Hammer remarks, "There is no need of such likeness
of name to prove that al this episode is a manifest imitation of the
adventures of Ulysses in Polyphemus's cave; * * * and this induces the
belief that the Arabs have been acquainted with the poems of Homer."
Living intimately with the Greeks they could not have ignored the Iliad
and the Odyssey: indeed we know by tradition that they had
translations, now apparently lost. I cannot however, accept Lane's
conjecture that "the story of Ulysses and Polyphemus may have been of
Eastern origin." Possibly the myth came from Egypt, for I have shown
that the opening of the Iliad bears a suspicious likeness to the proem
of Pentaur's Epic.

[FN#444] Arab. "Shakhtúr".

[FN#445] In the Bresl. Edit. the ship is not wrecked but lands Sa'id in

[FN#446] So in the Shah-nameh the Sí­murgh-bird gives one of her
feathers to her protégé Zál which he will throw into the fire when she
is wanted.

[FN#447] Bresl. Edit. "Al-Zardakhánát" Arab. plur of Zarad-Khánah, a
bastard word = armoury, from Arab. Zarad (hauberk) and Pers. Khánah =
house etc.

[FN#448] Some retrenchment was here found necessary to avoid "damnable

[FN#449] i.e. Badi'a al-Jamal.

[FN#450] Mohammed.

[FN#451] Koran xxxv. "The Creator" (Fátir) or the Angels, so called
from the first verse.

[FN#452] In the Bresl. Edit. (p. 263) Sayf al-Muluk drops asleep under
a tree to the lulling sound of a Sákiyah or water-wheel, and is seen by
Badi'a al-Jamal, who falls in love with him and drops tears upon his
cheeks, etc. The scene, containing much recitation, is long and well

[FN#453] Arab. "Lukmah" = a bouchée of bread, meat, fruit or pastry,
and especially applied to the rice balled with the hand and delicately
inserted into a friend's mouth.

[FN#454] Arab. "Saláhiyah," also written Saráhiyah: it means an
ewer-shaped glass-bottle.

[FN#455] Arab. "Sarmújah," of which Von Hammer remarks that the
dictionaries ignore it; Dozy gives the forms Sarmúj, Sarmúz, and
Sarmúzah and explains them by "espèce de guêtre, de sandale ou de mule,
qu'on chausse par-dessus la botte."

[FN#456] In token of profound submission.

[FN#457] Arab. "Misr" in Ibn Khaldún is a land whose people are settled
and civilised hence "Namsur" = we settle; and "Amsár" = settled
provinces. Al-Misrayn was the title of Basrah and Kufah the two
military cantonments founded by Caliph Omar on the frontier of
conquering Arabia and conquered Persia. Hence "Tamsí­r" = founding such
posts, which were planted in Mesopotamia, Syria and Egypt. In these
camps were stationed the veterans who had fought under Mohammed; but
the spoils of the East soon changed them to splendid cities where
luxury and learning flourished side by side. Sprenger (Al-Mas'údi pp.
19, 177) compares them ecclesiastically with the primitive Christian
Churches such as Jerusalem, Alexandria and Antioch. But the Moslems
were animated with an ardent love of liberty and Kufah under Al-Hajjaj
the masterful, lost 100,000 of her turbulent sons without the thirst
for independence being quenched. This can hardly be said of the Early
Christians who, with the exception of a few staunch-hearted martyrs,
appear in history as pauvres diables and poules mouillées, ever
oppressed by their own most ignorant and harmful fancy that the world
was about to end.

[FN#458] i.e. Waiting to be sold and wasting away in single cursedness.

[FN#459] Arab. "Yá dádati": dádat is an old servant-woman or slave,
often applied to a nurse, like its congener the Pers. Dádá, the latter
often pronounced Daddeh, as Daddeh Bazm-árá in the Kuisum-nameh
(Atkinson's "Customs of the Women of Persia," London, 8vo, 1832).

[FN#460] Marjánah has been already explained. D'Herbelot derives from
it the Romance name Morgante la Déconvenue, here confounding Morgana
with Urganda; and Keltic scholars make Morgain = Mor Gwynn-the white
maid (p. 10, Keightley's Fairy Mythology, London, Whittaker, 1833).

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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.