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Full text of "A plain and literal translation of the Arabian nights entertainments, now entitled The book of the thousand nights and a night"

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I HAVE heard, O auspicious King, that the Caliph Harun al-Rashid 
was one night wakeful exceedingly and when he rose in the morning 
restlessness gat hold of him. Wherefore all about him were 
troubled for that " Folk aye follow Prince's fashion ; " they rejoice 
exceedingly with his joy and are sorrowful with his sorrows albeit 
they know not the cause why they are so affected. Presently the 
Commander of the Faithful sent for Masriir the Eunuch, and when 
he came to him cried, " Fetch me my Wazir, Ja'afar the "Barmaki, 
without stay or delay." Accordingly, he went out and returned 
with the Minister who, finding him alone, which was indeed rare, 
and seeing as he drew near that he was in a melancholic humour, 
neVer even raising his eyes, stopped till his lord would vouchsafe 
to look upon him. At last the Prince of True Believers cast his 
glance upon Ja'afar, but forthright turned away his head and sat 
motionless as before. The Wazir descrying naught in the Caliph's 
aspect that concerned him personally, strengthened his purpose 
and bespake him on this wise, " O C6mmander of the Faithful, 
wilt thine Highness deign suffer me to ask whence cometh this 
sadness ? " and the Caliph answered, with a clearer brow, " Verily, 
O Wazir, these moods have of late become troublesome to me, nor 
are they to be moved save by hearing strange tales and verses ; 
and, if thou come not hither on a pressing affair, thou wilt gladden 
me by relating somewhat to dispel my sadness." Replied the 
Wazir, " O Commander of the Faithful, my office compelleth me 
to stand on thy service, and I would fain remind thee that this is 
the day appointed for informing thyself of the good governance 
of thy capital and its environs ; and this matter shall, Inshallah, 

308 Supplemental Nights. 

divert thy mind and dispel its gloom." The Caliph answered, 
" Thou dost well to remind me, for that I had wholly forgotten it ; 
so fare forth and change thy vestments while I do the same with 
mine." Presently the twain donned habits of stranger merchants 
and issued out by a private postern of the palace-garden, which 
led them into the fields. After they had skirted the city, they 
reached the Euphrates' bank at some distance from the gate 
opening on that side, without having observed aught of disorder ; 
then they crossed the river in the first ferry-boat they found, and, 
making a second round on the further side, they passed over the 
bridge that joined the two halves of Baghdad-town. At. the 
bridge-foot they met with a blind old man who asked alms of 
them ; and the Caliph turned about and crossed his palm with a 
dinar, whereupon the beggar caught hold of his hand, and held 
him fast, saying, " O beneficent man, whoso thou ever may be, 
whom Allah hath inspired to bestow an alms upon me, refuse not 
the favour I crave of thee, which is, to strike me a buffet upon the 
ear, for that I deserve such punishment and a greater still." After 
these words he quitted his hold of the Caliph's hand that it might 
smite him, yet for fear lest the stranger pass on without so doing 
he grasped him fast by his long robe. - And as the morn began 
to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

enfc of t&e btx l^untetr an& jftftft 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
Caliph, surprised by the blind man's words and deeds said, " I may 
not grant thy request nor will I minish the merit of my charity, 
by treating thee as thou wouldst have me entreat thee." Saying 
these words, he strove to get away from the blind man, but he who 
after his long experience expected this refusal of his benefactor, 
did his utmost to keep hold of him, and cried, " O my lord, forgive 
my audacity and my persistency; and I implore thee either give 

The Caliph's Night Adventurt. 309 

me a cuff on the ear, or take back thine alms, for I may not receive 
it save on that condition, without falsing a solemn oath I have 
sworn before the face of Allah ; and, if thou knew the reason, 
thou wouldst accord with me that the penalty is light indeed." 
Then the Caliph not caring to be delayed any longer, yielded to the 
blind man's importunity, and gave him a slight cuff: whereupon he 
loosed him forthright and thanked him and blessed him. When 
the Caliph and his Wazir had walked some way from the blind 
man, the former exclaimed, "This blind beggar must assuredly 
have some right good cause for behaving himself in such manner 
to all who give him alms, and I would fain know it. Do thou 
return to him and tell him who I am, and bid him fail not to 
appear at my palace about midafternoon prayer-time that I may 
converse with him, and hear vvhatso he hath to say." Hereupon 
Ja'afar went back and bestowed alms on the blind man giving 
him another cuff on the ear and apprised him of the Caliph's 
command, and returned forthright to his lord. Presently, when 
the twain reached the town, they found in a square a vast crowd 
of folk gazing at a handsome youth and a well-shaped, who was 
mounted on a mare which he rode at fullest speed round the open 
space, spurring and whipping the beast so cruelly that she was 
covered with sweat and blood. Seeing this the Caliph, amazed at the 
youth's brutality, stopped to ask the by-standers an they knew why 
he tortured and tormented the mare on such wise ; but he could learn 
naught save that for some while past, every day at the same time, 
he had entreated her after the same fashion. Hereat as they 
walked along, the Caliph bid his Wazjr especially notice the place 
and order the young man to come without failing on the next day, 
at the hour appointed for the blind man. But ere the Caliph 
reached his palace, he saw in a street, which he had not passed 
through for many months, a newly-built mansion, which seemed to 
him the palace of some great lord of the land. He asked the 
Wazir an he knew its owner ; and Ja'afar answered be did not 

3 jo Supplemental Nights, 

but would make inquiry. So he consulted a neighbour who told 
him that the house-owner was one Khwajah Hasan surnamed 
Al-Habbal from his handicraft, rope-making; that he himself had 
seen the man at work in the days of his poverty, that he knew not 
how Fate and Fortune had befriended him, yet that the same 
Khwajah had gotten such exceeding wealth that he had been 
enabled to pay honourably and sumptuously all the expenses he 
had incurred when building his palace. Then the Wazir returned 
to the Caliph, and gave him a full account of whatso he had heard, 
whereat cried the Prince of True Believers, " I must see this 
Khwajah Hasan al-Habbal : do thou therefore, O Wazir, go and 
tell him to come to my palace, at the same hour thou hast 
appointed for the other twain/' The Minister did his lord's 
bidding and the next day, after mid-afternoon prayers, the Caliph 
retired to his own apartment and Ja'afar introduced the three 
persons whereof we have been speaking and presented them to the 
Caliph. All prostrated themselves at his feet and when they rose 
up, the Commander of the Faithful asked his name of the blind 
man, who answered he was hight Baba Abdullah. " O Servant of 
Allah, cried the Caliph, " thy manner of asking alms yesterday 
seemed so strange to me that, had it not been for certain 
considerations, I should not have granted thy petition ; nay, I 
would have prevented thy giving further offence to the folk. And 
now I have bidden thee hither that I may know from thyself what 
impelled thee to swear that rash oath whereof thou toldest me, 
that I may better judge whether thou have done well or ill, and if 
I should suffer thee to persist in a practice which meseemeth must 
set so pernicious an example. Tell me openly how such mad 
thought entered into thy head, and conceal not aught, for I will 

know the truth and the full truth." And as the morn began 

to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

Tfu Story of the Blind Man, Baba Abdullah. 31 1 

enfc of tjje fj ?lMmlrt& nnb &ixt!j /ligfjt. 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that 
Baba Abdullah terrified by these words, cast himself a second 
time at the Caliph's feet with his face prone to the ground, and 
when he rose again, said, " O Commander of the Faithful, I crave 
pardon of thy Highness for my audacity, in that I dared require, 
and well nigh compelled thee to do a thing which verily seemeth 
contrary to sound sense. I acknowledge mine offence ; but as I 
knew not thy Highness at that time, I implore thy clemency, and 
I pray thou wilt consider my ignorance of thine exalted degree.- 
And .now as to the extravagance of my action, I readily admit 
that it must be strange to the sons of Adam ; but in the eye of 
Allah 'tis but a slight penance wherewith I have charged myself 
for an enormous crime of which I am guilty, and wherefor, an all 
the people in the world were each and every to give me a cuff on 
the ear 'twould not be sufficient atonement. Thy Highness shall 
judge of it thyself, when I, in telling my tale according to thy 
commandment, will inform thee of what was my offence." And 
here he began to relate 


O my lord the Caliph, I, the humblest of thy slaves, was born in 
Baghdad, where my father and mother, presently dying within a 
few days of each other, left me a fortune large enough to last me 
throughout my lifetime. But I knew not its value and soon I 
had squandered it in luxury and loose living and I cared naught 
for thrift or for increasing my store. But when little was left to 

1 i./. Daddy Abdullah ; the former is used in Pers. Turk, and Hindustani for dadl 
dear ! child ! and for the latter, sec voL v. 141. 

3 ! 2 Supplemental Nights. 

me of my substance, I repented of my evil courses and toiled and 
laboured hard by day and night to increase my remaining stock of 
money. It is truly said, " After waste cometh knowledge of 
worth." Thus little by little I got together fourscore camels, 
which I let on hire to merchants, and thus I made goodly gain 
each time I found occasion: moreover I was wont to engage 
myself together with my beasts and on this wise I journeyed over 
all the dominions and domains of thy Highness. Brief, I hoped 
ere long to reap an abundant crop of gold by the hiring out of 
m y baggage animals." -- And as the morn began to dawn 
Shahrazad held her peace till 

end of t&e &tx ^untrrefc and 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Baba 
Abdullah continued his tale in these words : Once I had 
carried merchants' stuffs to Bassorah for shipping India- wards and 
I was returning to Baghdad with my beasts unladen. Now as I 
fared homewards I chanced pass across a plain of excellent 
pasturage lying fallow and far from any village, and there un- 
saddled the camels which I hobbled and tethered together that they 
might crop the luxuriant herbs and thorns and yet not fare astray. 
Presently appeared a Darwaysh who was travelling afoot for 
Bassorah, and he took seat beside me to enjoy ease after unease ; 
whereat I asked him whence he wayfared and whither he was 
wending. He also asked me the same question and when we had 
told each to other our own tales, we produced our provisions and 
brake our fast together, talking of various matters as we ate. 
Quoth the Darwaysh, " I know a spot hard by which enholdeth a 
hoard and its wealth is so wonder-great that shouldst thou load 
upon thy fourscore camels the heaviest burthens of golden coins 
and costly gems from that treasure there will appear no minishing 
thereof." Hearing these words I rejoiced with exceeding joy and 

Tki Story of the Blind Man, Baba Abdullah. 3 1 3 

gathering from his mien and demeanour that he did not deceive 
me, I arose forthright and falling upon his neck, exclaimed, "O 
Hallow of Allah, who carest naught for this world's goods and hast 
renounced all mundane lusts and luxuries, assuredly thou hast 
full knowledge of this treasure, for naught remaineth hidden from 
holy men as thou art. I pray thee tell me where it may be found 
that I may load my fourscore beasts with bales of Ashrafis and 
jewels : I wot full well that thou hast no greed for the wealth of 
this world, but take, I pray thee, one of these my fourscore camels 
as recompense and reward for the favour." Thus spake I with 
my tongue but in my heart I sorely grieved to think that I must 
part with a single camel-load of coins and gems ; withal I reflected 
that the other three-score and nineteen camel-loads would contain 
riches to my heart's content. Accordingly, as I wavered in mind, 
at one moment consenting and at the next instant repenting, the 
Darwaysh noting my greed and covetise and avarice, replied, " Not 
so, O my brother : one camel doth not suffice me that I should 
shew thee all this hoard. On a single condition only will I tell 
thee of the place ; to wit, that we twain lead the animals thither and 
lade them with the treasure, then shalt thou give me one half 
thereof and take the other half to thyself. With forty camels' load 
of costly ores and minerals forsure thou canst buy thousands more 
of camels." Then, seeing that refusal was impossible, I cried " So 
be it ! I agree to thy proposal and I will do as thou desirest ; " for 
in my heart I had conned the matter over and well I wist that 
forty camel-loads of gold and gems would suffice me and many 
generations of my descendants ; and I feared lest an I gainsay him 
I should repent for ever and ever having let so great a treasure 
slip out of hand. Accordingly, giving full consent to all he said, f 
got together every one of my beasts and set me a-wayfaring along 
with the Fak/r. 1 After travelling over some short distance we came 

1 Here the Arab. syn. of the Per*. " Darwaysb," which Egyptians pronounce 
Darwfsh." In the Nile-valley the once revered title has been debased to an insult* 

3 1 4 Supplemental Nights. 

upon a gorge between two craggy mountain-walls towering high in 
crescent form and the pass was exceeding narrow so that the 
animals were forced to pace in single file, but further on it flared 
out and we could thread it without difficulty into the broad Wady 
below. No human being was anywhere to be seen or heard in 
this wild land, so we were undisturbed and easy in our minds nor 
feared aught. Then quoth the Darwaysh, " Leave here the camels 
and come with me," And as the morn began to dawn Shah- 
razad held her peace till 

b of te >fa untrreU an& 


THEN said she : > I have heard, O auspicious King, that the, blind 
man Baba Abdullah pursued his tale on this wise : I did as the 
Darwaysh had bidden me ; and, nakhing 1 all the camels, I followed 
in wake of him. After walking a short way from the halting-place 
he-produced a flint and steel and struck fire therewith and lit some 
sticks he had gotten together ; then, throwing a handful of strong- 
smelling incense.upon the flames, he muttered words of incantation 
which I could by ho means understand. At once a cloud of smoke 
arose,and spireingupwards veiled the mountains ; and presently, the 
vapour clearing away, we saw a huge rock with pathway leading 
to its perpendicular face. Here the precipice showed an open 
door, wherethrough appeared in the bowels of the mountain a 
splendid palace, the workmanship of the Jinns, for no man had 
power to build aught like it. In due time, after sore toil, we 
entered therein and found an endless treasure, ranged in mounds 
with the utmost ordinance and regularity. Seeing a heap of 
Ashrafis I pounced upon it as a vulture swoopeth upon her quarry, 

" poor devil" (see Pilgrimage i, pp. 20-22) ; "Fakir" also has come to signify a 

1 To " Nakh" is to make the camel kneel. See vol, ii. 139, and its references. 

Th* Story of the Blind Man, Baba Abdullah. 3 1 5 

the carrion, and fell to filling the sacks with golden coin to my 
heart's content. The bags were big, but I was constrained to stuff 
them only in proportion to the strength of my beasts. The Dar- 
waysh, too, busied himself in like manner, but he charged his sacks 
with gems and jewels only, counselling me the while to do as he 
did. So I cast aside the ducats and filled my bags with naught 
save the most precious of the stonery. When we had wrought our 
best, we set the well-stuffed sacks upon the camels' backs and we 
made ready to depart ; but, before we left the treasure-house 
wherein stood ranged thousands of golden vessels, exquisite ia 
shape and workmanship, the Darwaysh went into a hidden chamber 
and brought from out a silvern casket a little golden box full of 
some unguent, which he showed to me, and then he placed it in 
his pocket Presently, he again threw incense upon the fire and 
recited his incantations and conjurations, whereat the door closed 
and the rock became as before. We then divided the camels, he 
taking one half and I the other ; and, passing through the strait 
and gloomy gorge in single file, we came out upon the open plain. 
Here our way parted, he wending in the direction of Bassorah and 
I Baghdad-wards ; and when about to leave him I showered thanks 
upon the Darwaysh who had obtained me all this wealth and riches 
worth a thousand thousand of gold coins ; and farewelled him with 
deep emotions of gratitude ; after which we embraced and wended 
our several ways. But hardly had I bidden adieu to the Fakir and 
had gone some little distance from him with my file of camels than 
the Shay tan tempted me with greed of gain so that I said to myself, 
" The Darwaysh is alone in the world, without friends or kinsman, 
and is wholly estranged from matters mundane. What will these 
camel-loads of filthy lucre advantage him f Moreover, engrossed 
by the care of the camels, not to speak of the deceitfulness of 
riches, he may neglect his prayer and worship : therefore it beho- 
veth me to take back from him some few of my beasts." With 

this resolve I made the camels halt and tying up their forelegs ran 

Supplemental Nights. 

back after the holy man and called out his name. He heard my 
loud shouts and awaited me forthright ; and, as soon as I 
approached him I said, "When I had quitted thee a thought 
came into my mind ; to wit, that thou art a recluse who keepest 
thyself aloof from earthly things, pure in heart and busied only 
with orison and devotion. Now care of all these camels will cause 
thee only toil and moil and trouble and waste of precious time : 
'twere better then to give them back and not run the risk of these 
discomforts and dangers/'. The Darwaysh replied, "O my son, 
thou speakest sooth. The tending of all these animals will bring 
me naught save ache of head, so do thou take of them as many as 
thou listest. I thought not of the burthen and pother till thou 
drewest my attention thereto; but now I am forewarned thereof; 
so may Almighty Allah keep thee in His holy keeping ! " Accord- 
ingly, I took ten camels of him and was about to gang my gait 
when suddenly it struck me, " This Fakir was unconcerned at 
giving up ten camels, so 'twere better I ask more of him/' There- 
upon I drew nearer to him and said, " Thou canst hardly manage 
thirty camels ; do give me, I pray thee, other ten." Said he, " O 
my son, do whatso thou wishest ! Take thee other ten camels ; 
twenty will suffice me/' I did his bidding and driving off the 
twenty added them to my forty. Then the spirit of concupiscence 
possessed me, and I bethought me more and more to get yet 
other ten camels from his share ; so I retraced my steps for the 
third time and asked him for another ten, and of these, as also the 
remaining ten, I wheedled him. The Darwaysh gladly gave up 
the last of his camels, and, shaking out his skirts, 1 made ready to 
depart ; but still my accursed greed stuck to me. Albeit I had 
got the fourscore beasts laden with Ashrafis and jewels, and I 
might have gone home happy and content, with wealth for four- 
score generations, Satan tempted me still more, and urged me 

- 1 As a sign that he parted willingly with all his possessions. 

Tkt Story of the Blind Man, Baba A bdullah. 3 1 7 

also to take the box of ointment, which I supposed to contain 
something more precious than rubies. -And as the morn began 
to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

en* of tfic &ur IDun&teU anfc Jiintt) 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Baba 

Abdullah continued his tale in these words : So when I had 
again farewelled and embraced him I paused awhile and said, 
" What wilt thou do with the little box of salve thou hast taken 
to thy portion ? I pray thee give me that also." The Fakir 
would by no means part with it, whereupon I lusted the more to 
possess it, and resolved in my mind that, should the holy man 
give it up of his free will, then well and good, but if not I would 
force it from him. Seeing my intent he drew the box from out 
his breast-pocket ! and handed it to me saying, " O my son, an 
thou wouldst have this box of ointment, then freely do I give it 
to thee; but first it behoveth thee to learn the virtue of the 
unguent it containeth." Hearing these words I said, "Foras- 
much as thou hast shown me all this favour, I beseech thee tell 
me of this ointment and what of properties it possesseth." Quoth 
he, " The wonders of this ointment are passing strange and rare. 
An thou close thy left eye and rub upon the lid the smallest bit of 
the salve then all the treasures of the world now concealed from 
thy gaze will come to sight ; but an thou rub aught thereof upon 
thy right eye thou shalt straightway become stone-blind of both." 
Thereat I bethought me of putting this wondrous unguent to the 
test and placing in his hand the box I said, " I see thou under- 
standest this matter right well ; so now I pray thee apply some- 
what of the ointment with thine own hand to my left eyelid." 

'.Arab. " 'Ubb" prop. = the bulge between the breast and the outer robe whicfc U 
girdled round the waist to make a pouch. See vol. viii. 20$. 

3 1 8 Supplemental Nights. 

The Darwaysh thereupon closed my left eye and with his finger 
rubbed a little of the unguent over the lid ; and when I opened 
it and looked around I saw the hidden hoards of the earth in 
countless quantities even as the Fakir had told me I should see 
them. Then closing my right eyelid, I bade him apply some of 
the salve to that eye also. Said he, "O my son, I have fore- 
warned thee that if I rub it upon thy right eyelid thou shalt 
become stone-blind of both. Put far from thee this foolish 
thought: why shouldst thou bring this evil to no purpose on 
thyself?" He spake sooth indeed, but by reason of my accursed 
ill-fate I would not heed his words and considered in my mind, 
" If applying the salve to the left eyelid hath produced such 
effect, assuredly far more wondrous still shall be the result when 
rubbed on the right eye. This fellow doth play me false and 
keepeth back from me the truth of the Inatter." When I had 
thus determined in my mind I laughed and said to the holy man, 
" Thou art deceiving me to the intent that I should not advantage 
myself by the secret, for that rubbing the unguent upon the right 
eyelid hath' some greater virtue than applying it to the left eye, 
and thou wouldst withhold the matter from me. It can never be 
that the same ointment hath qualities so contrary and virtues so 
diverse." Replied the other, " Allah Almighty is my witness 
that the marvels of the ointment be none other save these whereof 
I bespake thee ; O dear my friend, have faith in me, for naught 
hath been tbld thee save what is sober sooth." Still would I not 
believe his words, thinking that he dissembled with me and kept 
secret from me the main virtue of the unguent. Wherefore filled 
with this foolish thought I pressed him sore and begged that he 
rub the ointment upon my right eyelid ; but he still refused and 
said, "Thou seest how much of favour I have shown to thee: 
wherefore should I now do thee so dire an evil? Know for a 
surety that it would bring thee lifelong grief and misery ; and 
I beseech thee, by Allah the Almighty, abandon this thy purpose 

Tkt Story of t/u Blind Man, Baba Abdullah. 319 

and believe my words." But the more he refused so much the 
more did I persist ; and in fine I made oath and sware by Allah, 
saying, " O Darwaysh, what things soever I have asked of thee 
thou gavedst freely onto me and now remaineth only this request 
for me to make. Allah upon thee, gainsay me not and grant me 
this last of thy boons : and whatever shall betide me 1 will not hold 
thee responsible therefor. Let Destiny decide for good or for 
evil." When the holy man saw that his denial was of no avail 
and that I irked him with exceeding persistence, he put the 
smallest bit of ointment on my right lid and, as I opened wide 
my eyes, lo and behold ! both were stone-blind : naught could I 
see for the black darkness before them and ever since that day 
have I been sightless and helpless as thou foundest me. When I 
knew that I was blinded, I exclaimed, " O Darwaysh of ill-omen, 
what thou didst foretell hath come to pass ;" and I fell to cursing 
him and saying, " O would to Heaven thou hadst never brought 
me to the hoard or hadst given me such wealth. What now 
avail me all this gold and jewels ? Take back thy forty camels 
and make me whole again." Replied he, " What evil have I done 
to thee ? I showed thee favours more than any man hath ever 
dealt to another. Thou wouldst not heed my rede, but didst 
harden thy heart and lustedst to obtain this wealth and to pry 
into the hidden treasures of the earth. Thou wouldst not be 
content with what thou hadst and thou didst misdoubt my words 
thinking that I would play thee false. Thy case is beyond all 
hope, for nevermore wilt thou regain thy sight ; no, never." Then 
said I with tears and lamentations, " O Fakir, take back thy four- 
score camels laden with gold and precious stones and wend thy way: 
I absolve thee from all blame, natheless I beseech thee by Allah 
Almighty to restore my sight an thou art able." He answered 
not a word, but leaving me in miserable plight presently took the 
load to Bassorah, driving before him the fourscore camels laden 
with wealth. I cried aloud and besought him to lead me with him 

Supplemental Nights. 

away from the life-destroying wilderness, or to put me on the path 
of some caravan, but he regarded not my cries and abandoned me 

there. And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her 

peace till 

te entr of t&e g>i* f^unUrefc antu ^entfr Ni$t. 

THEN said she: f have heard, O auspicious king, that Baba 

Abdullah the blind man resumed his story, saying : So when 
the Darwaysh departed from me, I had well nigh died of grief and 
wrath at the loss of my sight and of my riches, and from the 
pangs of thirst 1 and hunger. Next day by good fortune a caravan 
from Bassorah passed that way ; and, seeing me in such a grievous 
condition, the merchants had compassion on me and made me 
travel with them to Baghdad. Naught could I do save beg my 
bread in order to keep myself alive ; so I became a mendicant and 
made this vow to Allah Almighty that, as a punishment for this 
my unlucky greed and cursed covetise, I would require a cuff upon 
my ear from everyone who might take pity on my case and give 
an alms. On this wise it was that yesterday I pursued thee with 
such pertinacity." When the blind man made an end of his story 
the Caliph said, " O Baba Abdullah ! thine offence was grievous ; 
may Allah have mercy on thee therefor. It now remaineth to thee 
to tell thy case to devotees and anchorites that they may offer up 
their potent prayers in thy behalf. Take no thought for thy daily 
wants : I have determined that for thy living thou shalt have a 
dole of four dirhams a day from my royal treasury according to 
thy need as long as thou mayest live. But see that thou go no 
more to ask for alms about my city." So Baba Abdullah returned 
thanks to the Prince of True Believers, saying, " I will do according 

1 Thirst very justly takes precedence of hunger : a man may fast for forty days, but 
without water in a tropical country he would die within a week. For a description of 
Ihe horrors of thirst see my " First Footsteps in East Africa, 11 pp. 387-8. 

The Caliph's Night Adventure. 321 

to thy bidding." Now when the Caliph Harun al-Rashid had heard 
the story of Baba Abdullah and the Darwaysh, he turned to and 
addressed the young man whom he had seen riding at fullest speed 
upon the mare and savagely lashing and ill-treating her. " What 
is thy name ? " quoth he, and quoth the youth, bowing his brow 
groundwards, " My name, O Commander of the Faithful, is Sfdi 
Nu'uman." 1 Then said the Caliph, " Hearken now, O Sidi 
Nu'uman ! Ofttimes have I watched the horsemen exercise their 
horses, and I myself have often done likewise, but never saw I any 
who rode so mercilessly as thou didst ride thy mare, for thou didst 
ply both whip and shovel-iron in cruellest fashion. The folk all 
stood to gaze with wonderment, but chiefly I, who was constrained 
against my wish to stop and ask the cause of the bystanders. None, 
however, could make clear the matter, and all men said that thou 
art wont each day to ride the mare in this most brutal fashion, 
whereat my mind marvelled all the more. I now would ask of 
thee the cause of this thy ruthless savagery, and see that thou tell 
me every whit and leave not aught unsaid/' Sidi Nu'uman, hearing 
the order of the Commander of the Faithful, became aware he was 
fully bent upon hearing the whole matter and would on no wise 
suffer him to depart until all was explained. So the colour of his 
countenance changed and he stood speechless like a statue through 
fear and trepidation ; whereat said the Prince of True Believers, 
" O Sidi Nu'uman, fear naught but tell me all thy tale. Regard 
me in the light of one of thy friends and speak without reserve, 
and explain to me the matter fully as thou wouidst do hadst thou 
been speaking to thy familiars. Moreover, an thou art afraid of 
any matter which thou shall confide to me and if thou dread my 

1 In Galland it is Sidi Nouman ; in many English translations, as in the " Lucknow " 
(Ncwul Kishore Press, 1880), it has become "Sidi Nonman." The word has occurred 
in King Omar bin al-Nu'uman, vol. ii. 77 and 325, and vol. v. 74. For S(di = my 
lord, see vol. v. 383 ; Byron, in The Corsair, ii. 2, seems to mistake it for " Seyrwt" 

High in his hall reclines the turban'd Seyd, 
Around ihc bearded chiefs he. came to lead. 

322 Supplemental Nights. 

indignation, I grant thee immunity and a free pardon.'* At these 
comforting words of the Caliph, Sidi Nu'uman took courage, and 
with clasped hands replied, " I trust I have not in this matter done 
aught contrary to thy Highness's law and custom, and therefore 
will I willingly obey thy bidding and relate to thee all my tale. If 
I have offended in anything then am I worthy of thy punishment. 
'Tis true that I have daily exercised the mare and ridden her at 
speed around the hippodrome as thou sawest me do ; and I lashed 
and gored her with all my might. Thou hadst compassion on the mare 
and didst deem me cruel-hearted to entreat her thus, but when thou 
shalt have heard all my adventure thou wilt admit, Inshallah God 
willing that this be only a trifling penalty for her offence, and 
that not she but I deserve thy pity and pardon ! With thy per- 
mission I will now begin my story." -- And as the morn began to 
dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

enfc of t&e Sbfo utrt)rrtf an& 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, .that the 
Caliph Harun al-Rashid accorded the youth permission to speak 
and that the rider of the mare began in these words the 



O LORD of beneficence and benevolence, my parents were pos- 
sessed of wealth and riches sufficient to provide their son when 
they died with ample means for a life-long livelihood so that 
he might pass his days like a Grandee of the land in ease 
and joyance and delight. I their only child had nor care 
nor trouble about any matter until one day of the days, when 
in the prime of manhood, I was a minded to take unto me 
a wife, a woman winsome and comely to look upon, that we 
might live together in mutual love and double blessedness. But 
Allah Almighty willed not that a model helpmate become mine ; 
nay, Destiny wedded me to grief and the direst misery. I 
married a maid who in outward form and features was a model 
of beauty and loveliness without, however, one single gracious 
gift of mind or soul ; and on the very second day after the 
wedding her evil nature began to manifest itself. Thou art well 
aware, O Prince of True Believers, that by Moslem custom none 
may look upon the face of his betrothed before the marriage- 
contract", nor after wedlock can he complain should his bride 
prove a shrew or a fright : he must needs dwell with her in such 
content as he may and be thankful for his fate, be it fair or unfair. 
When I saw first the face of my bride and learnt that it was 
passing comely, I joyed with exceeding joy and gave thanks to 
Almighty Allah that He had bestowed on me so charming a 
mate. That night I slept with her in joy and love-delight ; but 
next day when the noon-meal was spread for me and her I found 
her not at table and sent to summon her ; and after some delay, 
she came and sat her down. I dissembled my annoyance and 

326 Supplemental Nights. 

forbore for this late-coming to find fault with her; which I soon 
had ample reason to do. It so happened that amongst the many 
dishes which were served up to us was a fine pilaff, 1 of which I, 
according to the custom in our city, began to eat with a spoon ; 
but she, in lieu of it pulled out an ear-pick from her pocket and 
therewith, fell to picking up the rice and ate it grain by grain. 
Seeing this strange conduct I was sore amazed ancl fuming 
inwardly said in sweet tones, " O my Aminah, 2 what be this way 
of eating ? hast thou learnt it of thy people or art thou counting 
grains of rice purposing to make a hearty meal hereafter ? Thou 
hast eaten but ten or twenty during all this time. Or haply 
thou art practising thrift : if so I would have thee know that 
Allah Almighty hath given me abundant store and fear not on 
that account ; but do thou, O my dearling, as all do and eat as 
thou seest thy husband eat." I fondly thought that she would 
assuredly vouchsafe some words of thanks, but never a syllable 
spake she and ceased not picking up grain after grain : nay more, 
in order to provoke me to greater displeasure, she paused for a 
Jong time between each. Now when the next course of cakes 
came on she idly brake some bread and tossed a crumb or two 
into her mouth; in fact she ate less than would satisfy the stomach 
of a sparrow. I marvelled much to see her so obstinate and self- 
willed but I said to myself, in mine innocence, " May be she hath 
not been accustomed to eat with men, and especially she may be 
too shame-faced to eat heartily in presence of her husband : she will 
in time do whatso do other folk/' I thought also that perchance 
she hath already broken her fast and lost appetite, or haply it hath 

1 The Turco- English form of the Persian ^Pulao." 

* i.e. the secure (fern.). It was the name of the famous concubine of Solomon 
to whom he entrusted his ring (vol. vi. 84) ; also of the mother of Mohammed wha 
having taken her son to Al-Medinah (Yathrib) died on the return journey. 1 cannot 
understand why the Apostle of Al-Islam, according to his biographers and commentators, 
refused to pray for his parent's soul, she having been born in Al-Fitrah (the interval 
between the fall of Christianity and the birth of AMslam), when he had not begun to 
preach his "dispensation." See Tabari, ii, 450. 

History of Si<ti Nu'uma*. 317 

been her habit to cat alone. So I said nothing and after dinner 
went out to smell the air and play the Jarfd 1 and thought no more 
of the matter^ ^When, however, we two sat again at meat, my 
bride ate after the same fashion as before ; nay, she would ever 
persist in her perversity; whereat I was sore troubled in mind, and 
marvelled how without food she kept herself alive. One nfght it 
chanced that deeminglne fast asleep she rose up in stealth from 
my side, I being wide awake : when I saw her step cautiously from 
the bed as^one fearing lest she might disturb me. I wondered 
with exceeding wonder why she should arise from sleep to leave 
me thus and methought I would look into the matter. Wherefore 
I still feigned sleep and snored but watched her as I lay, and 
presently saw her dress herself and leave the room ; I then sprang 
off the bed and throwing on my robe and slinging my sword across 
my shoulder looked out of the window to spy whither she went 
Presently she crossed the courtyard and opening the street-door 

* * . "jmsc* . 

fared forth; and I also ran out through the entrance which she 
had left unlocked ; then followed her by the light of the moon 

until she entered a*cemetery hard by our home. And as the 

morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

of te >tx un*reH an* 

THEN said she : I have heard O auspicious King, that Sidt 

\^sj|SJfc4. ".tLLJ^'i.." <BtX ..,,tf^w; *..,- 

Nu'uman continued his story saying : But when I beheld 

U- i**^'*-. - ~**. *N^ ~^r 

Aminah my bride enter the cemetery, I stood without and close 

* - ' * * *^f C* - -- 

to the wall over which I peered so that I could espy her well but 
she could not discover me.' Then what did I behold but Aminafc 
sitting with a Gh41!**Thy Highness wottcth well that Ghuls be 

1 The cane-plays see vol. vi. 263. 

1 Gallaod has ttnr Goulc, i.e. a Ghulah, a she-Ghfll, an ogress. But the lad/ was 
supping with t mile of that species, for wbich aee vots. I; $5 ; ft. jft. 

328 Supplemental Nights. 

of the race of devils ; to wit, they are unclean spirits which inhabit 
ruins and which terrify solitary wayfarers and at times seizing 
them feed upon their flesh ; and if by day they find not any 
traveller to eat they go by night to the graveyards and dig out 
and devour dead bodies. So I was sore amazed and terrified to 
see my wife thus seated with a Ghul. Then the twain dug up 
from the grave a corpse which had been newly buried, and the 
Ghul and my wife Aminah tore off pieces of the flesh which she 
ate making merry the while and chatting with her companion ; but 
inasmuch as I stood at some distance I could not hear what it was 
they said. At this sight I trembled with exceeding fear. And when 
they had made an end of eating they cast the bones into the pit 
and thereover heaped up the earth e'en as it was before. Leaving 
them thus engaged in their foul and fulsome work, I hastened 
home ; and, allowing the street-door to remain half-open as my 
bride had done, I reached my room, and throwing myself upon 
our bed feigned sleep. Presently Aminah came and doffing her 
dress calmly lay beside me, and I knew by her manner that she 
had not seen me at all, nor guessed that I had followed her to the 
cemetery. This gave me great relief of mind, withal I loathed to 
bed beside a cannibal and a corpse-eater ; howbeit I lay still despite 
extreme misliking till the Muezzin's call for dawn-prayers, when 
getting up I busied myself with the Wuzu-ablution and set forth 
mosque-wards. Then having said my prayers and fulfilled my 
ceremonial duties, 1 I strolled about the gardens, and during this 
walk having turned over the matter in my mind, determined that 
it behoved me to remove my bride from such ill companionship, 
and wean her from the habit of devouring dead bodies. With 
these thoughts I came back home at dinner-time, when Aminah 

1 In the text Wazifah" prop. =a task, a stipend, a salary ; but here = the " Farz" 
devotions which he considered to be his duty. In Spitta-Bey (loc. fit. p. 218) it is = duty, 
office, position. 

History of Sidi Ntfuman. 329 

on seeing me return bade the servants serve up the noontide-meal and 
we twain sat at table ; but as before she fell to picking up the rice 
grain by grain. Thereat said I to her, " O my wife, it irketh me much 
to see thee picking up each grain of rice like a hen. If this dish 
suit not thy taste see there are, by Allah's grace and the Almighty's 
favour, all kinds of meats before us. Do thou eat of that which 
pleaseth thee most ; each day the table is bespread with dishes of 
different kinds and if these please thee not, thou hast only to order 
whatsoever food thy soul desireth. Yet I would ask of thee one 
question : Is there no meat upon the table as rich and toothsome 
as man's flesh, that thou refuses! every dish they set before thee ?" 
Ere I had finished speaking my wife became assured that I was 
aware of her night adventure : she suddenly waxed wroth with 
exceeding wrath, her face flushed red as fire, her eyeballs started 
out from their sockets and she foamed at the mouth with un- 
governable fury. Seeing her in this mood I was terrified and my 
sense and reason fled by reason of my affright ; but presently in 
the madness of her passion she took up a tasse of water which 
stood beside her and dipping her fingers in the contents muttered 
some words which I could not understand ; then sprinkling some 
drops over me, cried, " Accursed that thou art ! for this thine inso- 
lence and betrayal do thou be straightway turned into a dog." At 
once I became transmewed and she, picking up a staff began to 
ribroast me right mercilessly and well nigh killed me. I ran about 
from room to room but she pursued me with the stick, and tunded 
and belaboured me with might and main, till she was clean ex- 
hausted. She then threw the street-door half open and, as I made 
for it to save my life, attempted violently to close it, so as to squeeze 
my soul out of my body ; but I saw her design and baffled it, 
leaving behind me, however, the tip of my tail ; and piteously 
yelping hereat I escaped further basting and thought myself lucky 
to get away from her without broken bones. When I stood in the 
street still whining and ailing, the dogs of the quarter seeing a 

330 Supplemental Nights. 

stranger, at once came rushing at me barking and biting ; and I 
with tail between my legs tore along the market-place and ran into 
the shop of one who sold sheeps' and goats' heads and trotters ; 

and there crouching low hid me in a dark corner. And as the 

morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

cnfc of tftc gfeixtfi f^unttuft nntr Sljtrteemfj 

THEN said she: 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Sidi 

Nu'uman continued his story as follows : The shopkeeper, 
despite his scruples of conscience which caused him to hold all 
dogs impure, 2 had ruth upon my sorry plight and droye away the 
yelling and grinning curs that would have followed me into his shop; 
and I, escaping this danger of doom, passed all the night hid in 
my corner. Early next morning the butcher sallied forth to buy 
his usual wares, sheeps' heads and hooves ; and, coming hack with 
a large supply, he began to lay them out for sale within the shop 
when I, seeing that a whole pack of dogs had gathered about the 
place attracted by the smell of flesh, also joined them. The owner 
noticed me among the ragged tykes and said to himself, " This 
dog hath tasted, naught since yesterday when it ran yelping 
hungrily and hid within my shop." He then threw me a fair sized 
piece of meat, but I refused it and went up to him and wagged my 
tail to the end tha t he might know my wish to stay with him and 
be protected by his stall : he, however, thought that I had eaten 
my sufficiency, and, picking up a staff frightened me and chased 
'me away. So when I saw how the butcher heeded not my case, I 
I"" 1 

1 For this scene which is one of every day in the East ; see Pilgrimage ii. pp. 52-54. 

* This hate of the friend of man is inherited from Jewish ancestors ; and, wherever 
'the Hebrew element prevails, the muzzle, which has lately made its appearance in London, 
is strictly enforced, as at Trieste. Amongst the many boons which civilisation has con- 
ferred upon Cairo I may note hydrophobia ; formerly unknown in Egypt the dreadful 
disease has lately caused more than one death. In India sporadic cases have at rare 
times occurred in my own knowledge since -184$. 

History of Sidi Nu % uma*. 33 1 

trotted off and wandering to and fro presently came to a bakery 
and stood before the door wherethrough I espied the baker at 
breakfast. Albeit I made no sign as though I wanted aught of 
food, he threw me a bittock of bread ; and I, in lieu of snapping 
it up and greedily swallowing it, as is the fashion with all dogs, 
the gentle and simple of them, approached him with it and gazed 
in his face and wagged my tail by way of thanks. He was pleased 
by this my well-bred behaviour and smiled at me; whereat I, 
albeit not one whit anhungered, but merely to humour him, fell to 
eating the bread, little by little slowly and leisurely, to testify my 
respect He was yet more satisfied with my manners and wished 
to keep me in his shop ; and I, noting his intent, sat by the door 
and looked wistfully at him, whereby he knew that I desired naught 
of him save his protection. He then caressed me and took charge 
of me and kept me to guard his store, but I would not enter his 
house till after he had led the way ; he also showed me where to 
lie o'nights and fed me well at every meal and entreated me right 
hospitably. I likewise would watch his every movement and 
always lay down or rose up even as he bade me ; and whenas he 
left his lodging or walked anywhither he took me with him. If 
ever when I lay asleep he went outside and found me not, he would 
stand still in the street and call to me crying, "Bakht ! Bakht ! " l 
an auspicious name he had given to me ; and straightway on 
hearing him I would rush about and frisk before the door ; and 
when he set out to taste the air I paced beside him now running on 
ahead, now following at his heels and ever and anon looking up in 
his face. Thus some time passed during which I lived with him 
in all comfort ; till one day of the days it so chanced that a woman 
came to the bakery to buy her bread and gave the owner several 
dirhams to its price, whereof one was bad coin whilst the others 

1 In Galland " Rougeao " = (for Rougeaud ?) a retraced (man), *c, and in th* 
English version " Chance " : " Bakht " luclr, good fortune. 

VOL. III. 2 

Supplemental Nights. 

were good. My master tested all the silvers and, finding out the 
false bit, returned it demanding a true dirham in exchange ; but 
the woman wrangled and would not take it back and swore that it 
was sound. Quoth the baker, u The dirham is beyond all doubt a 
worthless : see yonder dog of mine, he is but a beast, yet mark me 
he will tell thee whether it be true or false silver." So he called 
me by my name, " Bakht ! Bakht ! " whereat I sprang up and ran 
towards him and he, throwing all the moneys upon the ground 
before me, cried, " Here look these dirhams over and if there be a 
false coin among them separate it from all the others." I inspected 
the silvers each by each and found the counterfeit : then, putting 
it on one side and all the others on another, I placed my paw upon 
the false silver and wagging what remained of my tail looked up 
at my master's face. The baker was delighted with my sagacity, 
and the woman also, marvelling with excessive marvel at what 
had happened, took back her bad dirham and paid another in 
exchange. But when the buyer fared forth, my master called 
together his neighbours and gossips and related to them this 
matter ; so they threw down on the ground before me coins both 
good and bad, in order that they might test me and see with their 
own eyes an I were as clever as my master had said I was. Many 
times in succession I picked out the false coin from amongst the 
true and placed my paw upon them without once failing ; so all 
went away astounded and related the case to each and every one 
they saw and thus the bruit of me spread abroad throughout the 
city. That livelong day I spent in testing dirhams fair and foul. 
-- And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

en* of t?) ftfrtft 3^tmiire& anfc Jpoutteenrt) 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Sidi 
Nu'uman continued his story saying :- From that day forwards 
the baker honoured me yet more highly, and all his friends and 

History of Sidi Nu'uma*. 333 

familiars laughed and said, " Forsooth thou hast in this dog a 
mighty good Shroff." 1 And some envied my master his luck in 
having me within the shop, and tried ofttimes to entice me away, 
but the baker kept me with him nor would he ever allow me to 
leave his side ; for the fame of me brought him a host of customers 
from every quarter of the town, even the farthest. Not many 
days after there came another woman to buy loaves at our shop 
and paid the baker six dirhams whereof one was worthless. My 
master passed them over to me for test and trial, and straightway 
I picked out the false one, and placing paw thereon looked up in 
the woman's face. Hereat she waxed confused and confessed 
that it was miscoined and praised me for that I had found it 
out ; then, going forth the same woman made signs to me that I 
should follow her unbeknown to the baker. Now I had not ceased 
praying Allah that somehow He would restore me to my human 
form and hoped that some good follower of the Almighty would 
take note of this my sorry condition and vouchsafe me succour. 
So as the woman turned several times and looked at me, I was 
persuaded in my mind that she had knowledge of my case; I 
therefore kept my eyes upon her ; which seeing she came back 
ere she had stepped many paces, and beckoned me to accompany 
her. I understood her signal and sneaking out of the presence of 
the baker, who was busy heating his oven, followed in her wake. 
Pleased beyond all measure to see me obey her, she went straight- 
way home with me, and entering she locked the door and led 
me into a room where sat a fair maid in embroidered dress whom 
I judged by her favour to be the good woman's daughter. The 
damsel was well skiHed in arts magical ; so the mother said 
to her, " O my daughter, here is a dog which telleth bad dirhams 
from good dirhams. When first I heard the marvel I bethought 
me that the beastie must be a man whom some base wretch and 

1 In the text " Sanif " =a money-changer. See vols. i. 210 ; iv. 270. 

334 Supplemental Nights. 

cruel-hearted had turned into a dog. Methought that to-day I 
would see this animal and test it when buying loaves at the booth 
of yonder baker and behold, it hath acquitted itself after the 
fairest of fashions and hath stood the test and trial. Look well, 
O my daughter, at this dog and see whether it be indeed an 
animal or a man transformed into a beast by gramarye." 
The young lady, who had veiled her face, 1 hereupon considered 
me attentively and presently cried, "O my mother, 'tis even as 
thou sayest, and this I will prove to thee forthright." Then rising 
from her seat she took a basin of water and dipping hand therein 
sprinkled some drops upon me saying, " An thou wert born a 
dog then do thou abide a dog, but an thou wert born a man 
then, by virtue of this water, resume thy human favour and figure.'* 
Immediately I was transformed from the shape of a dog to human 
semblance and I fell at the maiden's feet and kissed the ground 
before her giving her thanks ; then, bussing the hem of her gar- 
ment, I cried, "O my lady, thou hast been exceeding gracious 
unto one unbeknown to thee and a stranger. How can I find 
words wherewith to thank and bless thee as thou deservest? 
Tell me now, I pray thee, how and whereby I may shew my 
gratitude to thee ? From this day forth I am beholden to thy 
kindness and am become thy slave." Then I related all my 
case and told her of Aminah's wickedness and what of wrongs 
she had wrought me ; and I made due acknowledgment to her 
mother for that she had brought me to her home. Herewith 
quoth the damsel to me, " O Sidi Nu'uman, I pray thee bestow 
not such exceeding thanks upon me, for rather am I glad and 
grateful in conferring this service upon one so well-deserving as 
thou art. I have been familiar with thy wife Aminah for a long 
time before thou didst marry her; I also knew that she had 

1 Galland has forgotten this necessary detail t see vol. i. 30 and elsewhere. Itt 
Lane's Story of the man metamorphosed to an ass, the old woman, ' quickly covering 
her face, declared the fact." 

History of Sidi Nu'uma*. 335 

skill in witchcraft and she likewise knoweth of my art, for we 
twain learnt together of one and the same mistress in the science. 
We met ofttimes at the Ham mam as friends but, inasmuch as she 
was ill-mannered and ill-tempered, I declined further intimacy with 
her. Think not that it sufficeth me to have made thee recover 
thy form as it was aforetime; rfey, verily needs must I take due 
vengeance of her for the wrong she hath done thee. And this 
will I do at thy hand, so shalt thou have mastery over her and 
find thyself lord of thine own house and home. 1 Tarry here 
awhile until I come again; So saying the damsel passed into 
another room and I remained sitting and talking with her mother 
and praised her excellence and kindness towards me. The ancient 
dame also related strange and rare deeds of wonder done by her 
with pure purpose and lawful means, till the girl returned with 
an ewer in hand and said, "O Sidi Nu'uman, my magical art 
doth tell me that Aminah is at this present away from home 
but she will return thither presently. Meanwhile she dissembleth 
with the domestics and feigneth grief at severance from thee; 
and she hath pretended that, as thou sattest at meat with her, thou 
didst suddenly arise and fare forth on some weighty matter, when 
presently a dog rushed through the open door into the room and 
he drove it away with a staff." Then giving me a gugglet full of 
the water the maiden resumed, " O Sidi Nu'uman, go now to thine 
own house and, keeping this gugglet by thee, await patiently 
Aminah's coming. Anon she will return and seeing thee will be 
sore perplexed and will hasten to escape from thee ; but before she 
go forth sprinkle some drops from this gugglet upon her and recite 
these spells which I shall teach thee. I need not tell thee more ; thou 
wilt espy with thine own eyes what shall happen." Having said 
these words the young lady taught me magical phrases which I 

1 In the normal forms of this story, which GalUnd has told very badly, the matdea 
would have married the man she saved. 

336 Supplemental Nights. 

fixed in my memory full firmly, and after this I took my leave and 
farewelled them both. When I reached home it happened even as 
the young magician had told me ; and I had tarried but a short time 
in the house when Aminah came in. I held the gugglet in hand 
and she seeing me trembled with sore trembling and would fain 
have run away ; but I hastily sprinkled some drops upon her and 
repeated the magical words, whereat she was turned into a mare 
the animal thy Highness deigned remark but yesterday. I 
marvelled greatly to sight this transformation and seizing the mare's 

mane led her to the stable and secured her with a halter. And 

as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

fj* enfc of tlje bu f^untefc anfc Jttteentlj Ntgftf. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Sidi 

Nu'uman continued his story saying : When I had secured the 
mare, I loaded her with reproaches for her wickedness and her 
base behaviour, and lashed her with a whip till my forearm was 
tired. 1 Then I resolved within myself that I would ride her at 
full speed round the square each day and thus inflict upon her 
the justest penalty." Herewith Sidi Nu'uman held his peace, 
having made an end of telling his tale; but presently he resumed, 
" O Commander of the Faithful, I trow thou art not displeased 
at this my conduct, nay rather thou wouldst punish such a 
woman with a punishment still greater than this." He then kissed 
the hem of the Caliph's robe and kept silence ; and Harun 
al-Rashid, perceiving that he had said all his say, exclaimed, u In 
very sooth thy story is exceeding strange and rare. The wrong- 
doing of thy wife hath no excuse and thy requital is methinks 
in due measure and just degree, but I would ask thee one thing 

1 In other similar tales the injured one inflicts such penalty by the express command 
of his preserver who takes strong measures to ensure obedience. 

The Caliph's Night Adventure. 3J7 

How long wilt thou chastise her thus, and how long will she 
remain in bestial guise ? 'Twere better now for thee to seek the 
young lady by whose magical skill thy wife was transformed and 
beg that she bring her back to human shape. And yet I fear me 
greatly lest perchance whenas this sorceress, this Ghulah, shall 
find herself restored to woman's form and resumeth her conjura- 
tions and incantations she may who knoweth ? requite thee with 
far greater wrong than she hath done thee heretofore, and from 
this thou wilt not be able to escape." After this the Prince of 
True Believers forbore to urge the matter, albeit he was mild and 
merciful by nature, 1 and addressing the third man whom the 
Wazir had brought before him said, "As I was walking in such a 
quarter I was astonished to see thy mansion, so great and so grand 
is it ; and when I made enquiry of the townsfolk they answered 
each and every, that the palace belongeth to one (thyself) whom 
they called Khwajah Hasan. They added that thou wast erewhile 
exceeding poor and in straitened case, bat that Allah Almighty 
had widened thy means and had now sent thee wealth in such 
store that thou hast builded the finest of buildings ; moreover, that 
albeit thou hast so princely a domicile and such abundance of 
riches, thou art not unmindful of thy former estate, and thou dost 
not waste thy substance in riotous living but thou addest thereto 
by lawful trade. The neighbourhood all speaketh well of thee and 
not a wight of them hath aught to say against thee ; so I now 
would know of thee the certainty of these things, and hear from 
thine own lips how thou didst gain* this abundant wealth. I have 
summoned thee before me that I might be assured of all such 
matters by actual hearsay : so fear not to tell me all thy tale ; I 
desire naught of thee save knowledge of this thy case. Enjoy 
thou to thy heart's content the opulence that Almighty Allah 

1 In the more finished tales of the true " Night* " the mare would hare been restored 
to human shape aftet giving the best security for good conduct in time to come. 

338 Supplemental Nights. 

deigned bestow upon thee, and let thy soul have, pleasure therein." 
Thus spake the Caliph and the gracious words reassured the 
man. Then Khwajah Hasan threw himself before the Commander 
of the Faithful and, kissing the carpet at the foot of the throne, 
exclaimed, "O Prince of True Believers I will relate to thee a 
faithful relation of my adventure, and Almighty Allah be my 
witness that I have not done aught contrary to thy laws and just 
commandments, and that all this my wealth is by the favour and 
goodness of Allah alone." Harun al-Rashid hereupon again bade 
him speak out boldly and forthwith he began to recount in the 
following words the 



O LORD of beneficence ! obedient to thy royal behest, I will now 
rnform thy Highness of the means and the measures whereby 
Destiny dowered me with such wealth ; but first I would thou 
hear somewhat of two amongst my friends who abode in the 
House of Peace, Baghdad. They twain are yet alive and both 
well know the history which thy slave shall now relate. One of 
them, men call Sa'd, the other Sa'df. 2 Now Sa'di opined that 
without riches no one in this world could be happy and indepen- 
dent ; moreover that without hard toil and trouble and wanness 
and wisdom withal it were impossible to become wealthy But 
Sa'd differing therefrom would affirm that affluence cometh not to 
any save by decree of Destiny and fiat of Fate and Fortune. 
Sa'd was a poor man while Sa'di had great store of good ; yet 
there sprang up a firm friendship between them and fond affection 
each for other ; nor were they ever wont to differ upon any matter 
save only upon this ; to wit, that Sa'di relied solely upon delibera- 
tion and forethought and Sa'd upon doom and man's lot. It 
chanced one day that, as they sat talking together on this 
matter, quoth Sa'di, " A poor man is he who either is born a 
pauper and passeth all his days in want and penury, or he who 
having been born to wealth and comfort, doth in the time of man- 

1 i.t. Master Hasan the Rope-maker. Calland writes, after European fashion, 
"Hassan," for which see vol. i. 251; and for "Khwajah" vol. vi. 146. " Al- 
Habbal " was the cognomen of a learned ' Haflz" (= traditionist and Koran reader), 
Abu Ishak Ibrahim, in Ibn Khali, ii. 262 ; for another see iv. 410. 

* "Sa'd" = prosperity and "Sa'di" = prosperous; the surname of the "Persian 
moralist," for whom see my friend F. F. Arbuthnot's pleasant booklet, " Persian 
Portraits" (London, Quaritch, 1887). 

342 Supplemental Nights. 

hood squander all he hath and falleth into grievous need ; then 
lacketh he the power to regain his riches and to live at ease by 
wit and industry." Sa'd made answer, saying, " Nor wit nor 
industry availeth aught to any one, but Fate alone enableth him 
to acquire and to preserve riches. Misery and want are but 
accidents and deliberation is naught. Full many a poor man hath 
waxed affluent by favour of Fate and richards manifold have, 
despite their skill and store, been reduced to misery and beggary." 
Quoth Sa'di, " Thou speakest foolishly. Howbeit put we the 
matter to fair test and find out for ourselves some handicraftsman 
scanty of means and living upon his daily wage ; him let us 
provide with money, then will Jie without a doubt increase his 
stock and abide in ease and comfort, and so shalt thou be 
persuaded that my words be true." Now as they twain were 
walking on, they passed through the lane wherein stood my 
lodging and saw me a-twisting ropes, which craft my father and 
grandfather and many generations before me had followed. By 
the condition of my home and dress they judged that I was a 
needy man ; whereupon Sa'd pointing me out to Sa'di said, " An 
thou wouldst make trial of this our matter of dispute, see yonder 
wight. He hath dwelt here for many years and by this trade of 
rope-making doth gain a bare subsistence for himself and his. I 
know his case right well of old ; he is a worthy subject for the 
trial ; so do thou give him some gold pieces and test the matter." 
" Right willingly," replied Sa'di, " but first let us take full cogni- 
zance of him." So the two friends came up to me, whereat I left my 
work and saluted them. They returned my salam after which quoth 
Sa'di, " Prithee what be thy name ? " Quoth I, " My name is 
Hasan, but by reason of my trade of rope-making all men call me 

Hasan al-Habbal." And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad 

held her peace till 

History of Khwajah Hasan al-HabbaL 343 

enfc of tfje (x IQunUreto anH fetxtccntfc XtQ?)t. 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Hasan 
al-Habbal (the Rope-maker) continued his story, saying : There- 
upon Sa'di asked me, " How farest thou by this industry ? Me- 
thinks thou art blithe and quite content therewith. Thou hast 
worked long and well and doubtless thou hast laid by large store 
of hemp and other stock. Thy forbears carried on this craft for 
many years and must have left thee much of capital and property 
which thou hast turned to good account and on this wise thou hast 
largely increased thy wealth." Quoth I, " O my lord, no money 
have I in pouch whereby I may live happy or even buy me enough 
to eat. This is my case that every day, from dawn till eve, I spend 
in making ropes, nor have I one single moment wherein to take rest ; 
and still I am sore straitened to provide even dry bread for myself 
and family. A wife have I and five small children, who are yet 
too young to help me ply this business : and 'tis no easy matter to 
supply their daily wants ; how then canst thou suppose that I am 
enabled to put by large store of hemp and stock ? What ropes I 
twist each day I sell straightway, and of the money earned thereby 
I spend part upon our needs and with the rest I buy hemp where- 
with I twist ropes on the next day. However, praise be to Almighty 
Allah that, despite this my state of penury, He provideth us with 
bread sufficing our necessity." When I had made known all my 
condition Sa'di replied, " O Hasan, now I am certified of thy 
case and indeed 'tis other than I had supposed ; and, given that 
I give thee a purse of two hundred Ashrafis, assuredly thou shalt 
therewith greatly add to thy gains and be enabled to live in ease 
and affluence : what sayest thou thereto ? " Said I, a An thou 
favour me with such bounty I should hope to grow richer than all 
and every of my fellow-craftsmen, albeit Baghdad-town is pros- 
perous as it is populous." Then Sa'di, deeming me true and 

344 Supplemental Nights. 

trustworthy, pulled out of his pocket a purse of two hundred gold 
pieces and handing them to me said, " Take these coins and trade 
therewith. May Allah advance thee, but see to it that thou use 
this money with all heed, and waste it not in folly and ungracious- 
ness. I and my friend Sa'd will rejoice with all joy to hear of thy 
well-being; and, if hereafter we come again and find thee in 
flourishing condition, 'twill be matter of much satisfaction to us 
both." Accordingly, O Commander of the Faithful, I took the purse 
of gold with much gladness and a grateful heart and, placing it in 
my pocket, thanked Sa'di kissing his garment-hem, whereupon the 
two friends fared forth. And I, O Prince of True Believers, seeing 
the twain depart, went on working, but was sore puzzled and per- 
plexed as to where I might bestow the purse; for my house 
contained neither cupboard nor locker. Howbeit I took it home 
and kept the matter hidden from my wife and children and when 
alone and unobserved I drew out ten gold coins by way of spend- 
ing-money ; then, binding the purse-mouth with a bit of string I 
tied it tightly in the folds of my turband and wound the cloth 
around my head. Presently, I went off to the market-street and 
bought me a stock of hemp and coming homewards I laid in some 
meat for supper, it being now a long while since we had tasted 
flesh. But as I trudged along the road, meat in hand, a kite 1 
came suddenly swooping down, and would have snatched the morsel 
from out my hand had I not driven off the bird with the other 
hand. Then it had fain pounced upon the flesh on the left side 
but again I scared it away and thus, whilst exerting myself with 
frantic efforts to ward off the bird, by ill luck my turband fell to 
the ground. At once that accursed kite swooped down and flew 
off with it in its talons ; and I ran pursuing it and shouted aloud. 
Hearing my cries the Bazar-folk, men and women and a rout of 

1 This is true to nature as may be seen any day at Bombay. The crows are equally 
audacious, and are dangerous to men lying wounded in solitary places. 

History of Khwajah Hasan al-Habbal. 345 

children, did what they could to scare it away and make the beastly 
bird drop its prey, but they shouted and cast stones in vain : the 
kite would not let drop the turband and presently flew clean out 
of sight. I was sore distressed and heavy-hearted to lose the 
Ashrafis' as I hied me home bearing the hemp and what of food 
I had bought, but chiefly was I vexed and grieved in mind, and 
ready to die of shame at the thought of what Sa'dt would say ; 
especially when I reflected how he would misdoubt my words, nor 
deem the tale true when I should tell him that a kite had carried 
off my turband with the gold pieces, but rather would he think 
that I had practised some deceit and had devised some amusing 
fable by way of excuse. Howbeit I hugely enjoyed what had 
remained of the ten Ashrafis and with my wife and children fared 
sumptuously for some days. Presently, when all the gold was 
spent and naught remained thereof, I became as poor and needy as 
before ; withal I was content and thankful to Almighty Allah nor 
blamed my lot. He had sent in his mercy this purse of gold to 
me unawares and now He had taken it away, wherefore I was 
grateful and satisfied, for what He doeth is ever well done. - 
And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

cnfc of tfte >ii ^unfcrrt anil Sbebmteentfc Jlfgit. 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Master 
Hasan the Ropemaker continued his story in these words : My 
wife, who knew not of the matter of the Ashrafis, presently per- 
ceived that I was ill at ease and I was compelled for a quiet life 
to let her know my secret; moreover the neighbours came round 
to ask me of my case : but I was right loath to tell them all 
that had betided ; they could not bring back what was gone and 
they would assuredly rejoice at my calamity. However, when 
they pressed me close I told them every whit ; and some thought 
that I had spoken falsely and derided me and others that I was 

346 Supplemental Nights. 

daft and hare-brained and my words were the wild pratings of an 
idiot or the drivel of dreams. The youngsters made abundant 
fun of me and laughed to think that I, who never in my born days 
had sighted a golden coin, should tell how I had gotten so many 
Ashrafis, and how a kite had flown away with them. My wife, 
however, gave full credence to my tale and wept and beat her 
breast for sorrow. Thus six months passed over us, when it 
chanced one day that the two friends, to wit, Sa'di and Sa'd, came 
to my quarter of the town, when quoth Sa'd to Sa'di, " Lo, yonder 
is the street where dwelleth Hasan al-Habbal. Come let us go 
and see how he hath added to his stock and how far he hath 
prospered by means of the two hundred Ashrafis thou gavest 
him." Sa'di rejoined, " 'Tis well said ; indeed, we have not seen 
him for many days : I would fain visit him and I should rejoice 
to hear that he hath prospered." So the twain walked along 
towards my house, Sa'd saying to Sa'di, " Forsooth I perceive 
that he'appeareth the same in semblance, poor and ill-conditioned 
as before ; he weareth old and tattered garments, save that his 
turband seemeth somewhat newer and cleaner. Look well and 
judge thyself and 'tis even as I said." Thereupon Sa'di came 
up closer to me and he also understood that my condition was 
unaltered ; and presently the two friends addressed me. After 
the usual salutation Sa'd asked, " O Hasan, how fareth it with 
thee, and how goeth it with thy business and have the two 
hundred Ashrafis stood thee in good stead and amended thy 
trade?" To this answered I, "O my lords, how can I tell you 
of the sad mishap that hath befallen me ? I dare not speak for 
very shame, yet cannot I keep the adventure concealed. Verily a 
marvellous matter and a wondrous hath happened to me, the tale 
whereof will fill you with wonderment and suspicion, for I wot 
full well that ye will not believe it, and that I shall be to you as 
one that dealeth in lies ; withal needs must I tell you the whole 
however unwillingly. Hereat I recounted to them every whit 

History of Khwajak Hasan al-HabbaL^ 347 

that had betlded me first and last, especially that which had 
befallen me from the kite ; but Sa'di misdoubted me and mis- 
trusted me and cried, " O Hasan, thou speakest but in jest and 
dost dissemble with us. 'Tis hard to believe the tale thou tellest 
Kites are not wont to fly off with turbands, but only with such 
things as they can eat. , Thou wouldst but outwit us and thou art 
of those who, when some good fortune cometh to them unforeseen, 
do straightways abandon their work or their business and, 
wasting all in pleasuring, become once more poor and thereafter 
must nilly-willy eke out a living as best they may. This methinks 
be especially the case with thee; thou hast squandered our gift 
with all speed and now art needy as before." " O good my lord, 
not so," cried I ; " this blame and these hard words ill befit my 
deserts, for I am wholly innocent of all thou imputest to me. The 
strange mishap whereof I told thee is the truest of truths ; and to 
prove that it is no lie all the town-folk haye knowledge thereof and 
in good sooth I do not play thee false. 'Tis certain that kites do 
not fly away with turbands ; but such mishaps, wondrous and 
marvellous, may betide mankind especially the miserable of lot." 
Sa'd also espoused my cause and said, " O Sa'di, ofttimes have 
we seen and heard how kites carry off many things besides 
comestibles ; and his tale may not be wholly contrary to reason." 
Then Sa'di pulled out from his pocket a purseful of gold pieces 
and counted out and gave me another two hundred, saying, " O 
Hasan, take these Ashrafis, but see that thou keep them with all 
heed and diligence and beware, and again I say beware, lest thou 
lose them like the others. Expend them in such fashion that 
thou mayst reap full benefit therefrom and prosper even as thou 
seest thy neighbours prosper." I took the money from him and 
poured out thanks and blessings upon his head, and when they 
went their ways I returned to my rope-walk and thence in due 
time straight home. My wife and children were abroad, so again 

I took ten gold coins of the two hundred and securely tied up 
VOL. in. A A 

348 Supplemental Nights. 

the remainder in a piece of cloth ; then I Jooked around to find a 
spot wherein to hide my hoard so that my wife and youngsters 
might not come to know of it and lay hands thereon. Presently, 
I espied a large earthen jar full of bran standing in a corner of 
the room, so herein I hid the rag with the gold coins and I mis- 
deemed that it was safely concealed from wife and wees. - And 
as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

en* of tfje Sbtx J^uirtuefc an& 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Hasan 
al-Habbal thus continued his story : When I had put the 
Ashrafis a-bottom the jar of bran, my wife came in and I said 
naught to her of the two friends or of aught had happened, but I 
set out for the Bazar to buy hemp. Now as soon as I had left the 
house there came, by evil fate impelled, a man who sold Tafl, or 
fuller's earth, 1 wherewith the poorer sort of women are wont to 
wash their hair. My wife would fain have bought some but not a 
single Kauri 2 or almond had she. Then she took thought and said 
to herself, " This jar of bran is here to no purpose, I will exchange 
it for the clay," and he also, the Tafl-seller, agreed to this proposal 
and went off taking the jar of bran as the price of the washing- 
earth. Anon I came back with a load of hemp upon my head and 
other five on the heads of as many porters who accompanied me ; 
and I helped them off with their burthens and, after storing the 
stuff in a room, I paid and dismissed them. Then I stretched me 
out upon the floor to take rest awhile and looking towards the 

1 The Pers. " Gil-i-sar-shui "( = head- washing clay), the Sindi " Met," and the Arab. 
" Tafl," a kind of clay much used in Persian, Afghanistan, Sind, etc. Galland turns it 
into terre & decrasser and his English translators into " scouring sand which women use 
in baths." This argillaceous earth mixed with mustard oil is locally used for clay and 
when rose-leaves and perfumes are used, it makes a tolerable wash-ball. See " Scinde or 
The Unhappy Valley," i. 31. 

2 For the "Cowrie" (Cyprace monetd) see vol. iv. 77. The Bddam or Bidara 
fchmond) used by way of small change in India, I have noted etewhere. 

History of Khwajah Hasan al-Habbal. 349 

corner where once stood the jar of bran I found it gone. Words 
fail me, O Prince of True Believers, to describe the tumult of 
feelings which filled my heart at the sight. I sprang up with all 
speed and calling to my wife enquired of her whither the jar had 
been carried ; and she replied that she had exchanged its contents 
for a trifle of washing-clay. Then cried I aloud, " O wretched, O 
miserable, what hast thou done? thou hast ruined me and thy 
children ; thou hast given away great wealth to that clay-selling 
fellow ! " Then I told her all that had betided me, of the coming 
of the two friends and how I had hidden the hundred and ninety 
Ashrafis within the bran-jar ; and she, on hearing this wept sore 
and beat her breast and tore her hair crying, " Where now shall I 
find that clay-seller ? The wight is a stranger, never before did 
I see him about this quarter or this street." Then turning to me 
she continued, " Herein thou hast dealt right foolishly, for that 
thou didst not tell me of the matter, nor didst place any trust in 
me ; otherwise this mishap would never have happened to us ; no, 
never." And she lamented with loud lamentation and bitter 
whereat I said, " Make not such hubbub nor display such trouble, 
lest our neighbours overhear thee, and learning of our mishap 
peradventure laugh at us and call us fools. It behoveth us 
to rest content with the will of Almighty Allah." However the 
ten Ashrafis which I had taken from the two hundred sufficed me 
to carry on my trade and to live with more of ease for some short 
while ; but I ever grieved and I marvelled much anent what could 
be said to Sa'di when he should come again ; for inasmuch as he 
believed me not the first time I was assured in my mind that now 
he would denounce me aloud as a cheat and a liar. One day of 
the days the twain, to wit, Sa'd and Sa'di, came strolling towards 
my house conversing and, as usual, arguing about me and my case ; 
and I seeing them from afar left off working that I might hide 
myself, as I could not for very shame come forth and accost them. 
Seeing this and not guessing the reason they entered my dwelling 

35O Supplemental Nights. 

and, saluting me with the salam, asked me how I had fared. I durst 
not raise my eyes so abashed and mortified was I, and with bended 
brow returned the greeting ; when they, noting my sorry plight, 
marvelled saying, " Is all well with thee ? Why art thou in this 
state ? Hast thou not made good use of the gold or hast thou 
wasted thy wealth in lewd living ? " Quoth I, " O my lords, the 
story of the Ashrafis is none other than this. When ye departed 
from me I went home with the purse of money and, finding no one 
was in the house for all had gone out somewhere, I took out therefrom 
ten gold pieces. Then I put the rest together with the purse within 
a large earthen jar filled full of bran which had long stood in one 
corner of the room, so might the matter be kept privy from my 
wife and children. But whilst I was in the market buying me some 
hemp, my wife returned home ; and at that moment there came in 
to her a man which sold fuller's earth for washing hair. She had 
need thereof withal naught to pay with ; so she went out to him 
and said, " I am clean without coin, but I have a quantity of bran ; 
say me, wilt thou have that in change for thy clay ? " The man 
agreed and accordingly my wife took the earth of him, and gave him 
in exchange the jarful of bran which he carried away with him and 
ganged his gait. An ye ask : Wherefore didst thou not confide 
the matter to thy spouse and tell her that thou hadst put the money 
in the jar ?" I on my side answer, that ye gave me strict injunc- 
tions to keep the money this time with the utmost heed and caution. 
Methought that stead was the safest wherein to store the gold and 
I was loa'th to trust my wife lest haply she take some coin there- 
from and expend it upon her household. O my lords, I am certified 
of your goodness and graciousness, but poverty and penury are 
writ in my Book of Fate ; how then can I aspire to possessions 
and prosperity ? Withal, never while I breathe the breath of life, 
shall I be forgetful of this your generous favour." Quoth Sa'di, 
" Meseemeth I have disbursed four hundred Ashrafis to no purpose 
in giving them to thee ; yet the intent wherewith they were given 

History of Khwajdh Hasan al-Habbal. 351 

was that thou shouldst benefit thereby, not that I claim thy praise 
and thanksgiving." So they twain compassionated and condoled 
with me in my misfortune ; and presently Sa'd, an upright man 
and one who had acquaintance with me since many a year, pro- 
duced a leaden coin l which he had picked up from the path and 
was still carrying in his pocket ; and, after shewing it to Sa'di, said 
to me, " Seest thou this bit of lead ? Take it and by favour of Fate 
thou shalt find out what blessings it will bring to thee." Sa'di on 
espying it laughed aloud and made jest of the matter and flouting 
said, " What advantage will there be to Hasan from this mite of 
lead and in what way shall he use it ? " Sa'd handing me the leaden 
coin retorted in reply, " Give no heed to whatso Sa'di may say, but 
keep this by thee. Let him laugh an he please. One day haply 
shall come to pass, Inshallah an it be the will of Almighty 
Allah that thou shalt by means thereof become a wealthy man 
and a magnifico." I took the bit of lead and put it in my pocket, 
and the twain bade me farewell and went their way. -And as the 
morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

of tfce &bc fLJunUrctt an* flmcteentf) 

THEN said she - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Hasan 
al-Habbal thus continued his story : As soon as Sa'd and Sa'di 
had departed, I went on rope-twisting until night came and when 
doffing my dress to go to bed the bit of lead which Sa'd had given 
me fell out of my pocket ; so I picked it up and set it carelessly in 
a small niche in the wall. 2 Now that very night so it happened 
that a fisherman, one of my neighbours, stood in need of a small 

1 GmJUnd has " un morctau dt plomb^ which in the Hindi text becomes " Shfshah- 
let-pays*" = a (pice) small coin of glass : the translator also terms it a " Faddah,"for which 
see Nurf (alias " Nuss "), vols. ii. 37 ; vi. 214 and ix. 139, 167. Glass tokens, by way 
of coins, were until late year* made. at Hebron, in Southern Syria. 

3 For the '< Tak " or " Takah " = the little wall-niche, see vol. vii. 361. 

352 Supplemental Nights. 

coin 1 wherewith to buy some twine for mending his drag-net, as 
he was wont to do during the dark hours, in order that he might 
catch the fish ere dawn of day and selling his quarry, buy victuals 
for himself and his household. So, as he was accustomed to rise 
while yet somewhat of night remained, he bade his wife go 
round about to all the neighbours and borrow a copper that he 
might buy the twine required ; and the woman went everywhere, 
from house to house, but nowhere could she get loan of a farthing, 
and at last she came home weary and disappointed. Quoth the 
fisherman to her, " Hast thou been to Hasan al-Habbal ? " and 
quoth she, " Nay, I have not tried at his place. It is the furthest 
of all the neighbours' houses and fanciest thou, even had I gone 
there, I could thence have brought back aught ? " " Off with thee, 
O laziest of hussies and good-for-nothing of baggages," cried the 
fisherman, " away with thee this instant ; perchance he hath a copper 
to lend us." Accordingly the woman, grumbling and muttering, 
fared forth and coming to my dwelling knocked at the door, saying, 
"O Hasan al-Habbal, my husband is in sore need of a pice 
wherewith to buy some twine for mending his nets." Minding me 
of the coin which Sa'd had given me and where it had been put 
away, I shouted out to her, " Have patience, my spouse will go 
forth to thee and give thee what thou needest." My wife, hearing 
all this hubbub, woke from sleep, and I told her where to find 
the bit of money, whereupon she fetched it and gave it to the 
woman, who joyed with exceeding joy, and said, " Thou and thy 
husband have shown great kindness to my man, wherefore I 
promise thee that whatsoever fish he may chance to catch at the 
first throw of the net shall be thine ; and I am assured that my 
goodman, when he shall hear of this my promise, will consent 
thereto.'* Accordingly when the woman took the money to her 

1 In the French and English versions the coin is a bit of lead for weighting the net. 
For the "Pays*" (pice) = two farthings, and in weight = half an ounce, see Herklot'i 
Glossary, p. xcviii. 

Historj of Kkwajah Hasan al-Habbal. 353 

husband and told him of what pledge she had given, he was right 
willing, and said to her, " Thou hast done well and wisely in that 
thou madest this covenant." Then having bought some twine and 
mended all the nets he rose before dawn and hastened riverwards 
to catch fish according to his custom. But when he cast the net 
into the stream for the first throw and haled it in, he found that 
it contained but one fish and that a full span ! or so in thickness, 
which he placed apart as my portion. Then he threw the net 
again and again and at each cast he caught many fishes both 
small and great, but none reached in size that he first had netted. 
As soon as he returned home the fisherman came at once to me 
and brought the fish he had netted in my name, and said, " O our 
neighbour, my wife promised over night that thou shouldst have 
whatever fishes should come to ground at the first net-throw ; and 

this fish is the only one I caught. Here it is, prithee take it as 


a thanks-offering for the kindness of last night, and as fulfilment 
of the promise. If Allah Almighty had vouchsafed to me offish 
a seine-full, all had been thine but 'tis thy fate that only this one 
was landed at the first cast/' Said I, " The mite I gave thee 
yesternight was not of such value that I should look for some- 
what in return ; " and refused to accept it. But after much " say 
and said " he would not take back the fish, and he insisted that it 
was mine : wherefore I agreed to keep it and gave it to my wife, 
saying, " O woman, this fish is a return for the mite I gave last 
night to the fisherman our neighbour. Sa'd hath declared that by 
means of that coin I shall attain to much riches and abundant 
opulence." Then I recounted to my wife how my two friends had 
visited me and what they said and did, and all concerning the 
leaden coin which Sa'd had given to me. She wondered at seeing 
but a single fish and said, " How shall I cook it ? Meseemeth 

1 In the text " bilisht "-the long span between thumb-tip and minimus-tip. Galland 
lay* long plus ftntc rowUt et grot & proportion. 

3 54 Supplemental Nighis, 

'twere best to cut it up and broil it for the children, especially as 

we have naught of spices and condiments wherewith to dress it 

otherwise." Then, as she-sliced and cleansed the fish she found 

within its belly a large diamond which she supposed to be a bit of 

glass or crystal ; for she oft had heard tell of diamonds 1 but 

never with her own eyes had she beheld one. So she gave it 

to the youngest of the children for a plaything and when the 

others saw it, by reason of its brightness and brilliancy all desired 

to have it and each kept it in turn awhile ; moreover when night 

came and the lamp was lighted they crowded round the stone and 

gazed upon its beauty, and screamed and shouted with delight. 2 

When my wife had spread the table we sat down to supper and 

the eldest boy set the diamond upon the tray, and as soon as we 

all had finished eating, the children fought and scrambled as before 

for it. At first I paid no heed to their noise and hubbub, but 

when it waxed exceeding loud and irksome I asked my eldest lad 

the cause why they quarrelled and made such turmoil. Quoth 

he, " The trouble and dispute are about a piece of glass which 

giveth forth a light as -bright as the lamp.'' Whereat I told him 

to produce it and marvelled greatly to see its sparkling water, 

and enquired of my wife whence she had gotten the piece of 

crystal. Quoth she, "This I found within the belly of the fish as 

1 For the diamond (Arab. "AlmaV from d8a//as, and in Hind. "Hird" and 
"Panna") see vols. vi. 15, i. ix. 325 ; and in latter correct, " Euritic," a misprint for 
"dioritic." I still cannot believe diamond-cutting to be an Indian art, and I must hold 
that it was known to the ancients. It could not have been an unpolished stone, that 
<J Adamas notissimus" which according to Juvenal (vi. 156) Agrippa gave to his sister. 
Maundeville (A.D. 1322) has a long account of the mineral, "so hard that no man can 
polish it," and called Hamese ("Almas?"). For Mr. Petrie and his theory, see 
vol. ix. 325. In most places where the diamond has been discovered of late years it 
had been used as a magic stone, e.g., by the Pages or medicine-men of the Brazil, or for 
children's playthings, which was the 'case with the South-African " Caffres." 

2 These stones, especially the carbuncle, which give out light in darkness are a 
common-place of Eastern folk-lore. For luminous jewels in folk-lore, see Mr. Clouston 
(i. 412) : the belief is not wholly extinct in England, and I have often heard of it in the 
Brazil and upon the African Gaboon. It appears to me that there may be a basis of 
fact to this fancy, the abnormal effect of precious stones upon mesmeric "sensitives." 

History of Khwajah Hasan al-Habbal. 355 

I was gutting it." Still I did not suppose it to be aught but 
glass. Presently I bade my wife hide the lamp behind the 
hearth. - And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her 
peace till 

of tfje gbfc 3$unftrrt ant fttocntietf) Nfg(t, 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Hasan 
al-Habbal thus continued his story : And when my wife had 
hidden the lamp from view, such was the brightness of the 
diamond that we could see right well without other light ; where- 
fore I placed it upon the hearth l that we might work by it, and 
said within myself, " The coin that Sa'd left with me hath produced 
this benefit that we no longer stand in need of a lamp : at least 
it saveth us oil." When the youngsters saw me put out the lamp 
and use the glass in its stead they jumped and danced for joy, 
and screamed and shouted with glee so that all the neighbours 
round about could hear them when I chid them and sent them 
to bed ; we also went to rest and right soon fell asleep. Next 
day I woke betimes and went on with my work and thought not 
of the piece of glass. Now there dwelt hard by us a wealthy 
Jew, a jeweller who bought and sold all kinds of precious stones ; 
and, as he and his wife essayed to sleep that night, by reason of 
the noise and clamour of the children they were disturbed for 
many hours and slumber visited not their eyes. And when morn 
appeared, the jeweller's wife came to our house to make com- 
plaint both for hertelf and her husband anent the hubbub and 
shouting. Ere she could say a word of blame my wife, guessing 
the intent wherewith she came, addressed her saying, " O Rahfl, 1 
I fear me that my children pestered thee last night with their 

1 The chimney and chimney-piece of GtlUnd arc not Eastern: the H. V. uses 
" Bukhiri " = a p)ace s for steaming. 
w." Rachel." 

Supplemental Nights. 

laughing and crying. I crave thine indulgence in this matter ; 
well thou must wot how children now cry now laugh at trifles. 
Come in and see the cause of all their excitement wherefor thou 
wouldst justly call me to account/' She did accordingly and 
saw the bit of glass about which the youngsters had made such 
din and uproar ; and when she, who had long experience of all 
manner precious stones, beheld the diamond she was filled with 
wonderment. My wife then told her how she had found it in 
the fish's belly, whereupon quoth the Jewess, " This bit of glass is 
more excellent than all other sorts of glass. I too have such 
an one as this which I am wont to wear sometimes ; and wouldst 
thou sell it I will buy this thing of thee," Hearing her words the 
children began to cry and said, " O mother dear, an thou wilt not 
sell it we promise henceforth to make no noise." Understanding 
that they would by no means part with it, the women held their 
peace and presently the Jewess fared forth, but ere she took her 
leave she whispered my wife, " See that thou tell the matter to 
none ; and, if thou have a mind to sell it at once send me word." 
Now the Jew was sitting in his shop when his wife went to him 
and told him of the bit of glass. Quoth he, " Go straightway back 
and offer a price for it, saying that 'tis for me. Begin with some 
small bidding, then raise the sum until thou get it." The Jewess 
thereupon returned to my house and offered twenty Ashrafis^ 
which my wife deemed a large sum to give for such a trifle ; 
however, she would not close the bargain. At that moment I 
happened to leave my work and, coming home to our noon-meal, 
saw the two women talking on the threshold; and my wife 
stopped me, saying, " This neighbour biddeth twenty Ashrafis to 
price for the piece of glass, but I have as yet given her no reply. 
What sayest thou ?" Then I bethought me of what Sa'd had 
told me ; to wit, that much wealth would come to me by virtue of 
his leaden coin. The Jewess seeing how I hesitated bethought 
her that I would not . consent to the price ; so quoth she, " O 

History of Khwajah Hasan al-Habbal. 3 5 7 

neighbour, an thou wilt not agree to part with the bit of glass for 
twenty pieces of gold, I will e'en give thee fifty." Hereat I 
reflected that whereas the Jewess raised her offer so readily from 
twenty golden pieces to fifty, this glass must surely be of great 
value ; so I kept silence and answered her not a word. Then 
noting that I still held my peace she cried, "Take then one 
hundred : this be its full value ; nay I know not in very deed if 
my husband will consent to so high a price." Said I in reply, " O 
my good woman, why talk so foolishly ? I will not sell it for aught 
less than an hundred thousand * gold coins ; and thou mayest take 
it at that price but only because thou art neighbour to us." The 
Jewess raised her offer coin by coin to fifty thousand Ashrafis and 
said, " I pray thee wait till morning and sell it not till then, so 
that my man may come round and see it" " Right willingly/' 
quoth I ; "by all manner of means let thy husband drop in and 

inspect it." And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held 

her peace till 

3T&C cntj of t&e Six f^unttreft ana {Jfoentg.first Nigfjt. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Hasan 

al-Habbal thus continued his story. Next day the Jew came to 
my house and I drew forth and showed to him the diamond 
which shone and glittered in my palm with light as bright as any 
lamp's. Presently, assured that all which his wife had told him 
of its water and lustre was strictly true, he took it in hand and, 
examining it and turning it about, marvelled with mighty marvel 
at its beauty saying, " My wife made offer of fifty thousand gold 
pieces : see now I will give thee yet another twenty thousand." 
Said I, " Thy wife hath surely named to thee what sum I fixed ; to 
wit, one hundred thousand Ashrafis and naught less : I shall not 

1 In the text lakh," the Anglicised "lac " = 100,000. 

3 5 8 Supplemental Nights. 

abate one jot or tittle of this price." The Jew did all he could to 
buy it for a lesser sum ; but I answered only, cc It mattereth 
naught ; an thou desire not to come to my terms I must needs 
sell it to some other jeweller." At length he consented and 
weighed me out two thousand gold pieces by way of earnest- 
money, saying, " To-morrow I will bring the amount of my offer 
and carry off my diamond." To this I gave assent and so, on the 
day following, he came to me and weighed out the full sum of one 
hundred thousand Ashrafis, which he had raised amongst his 
friends and partners in business. Then I gave him the diamond 
which had brought me such exceeding wealth, and offered thanks 
to him and praises unto Almighty Allah for this great good 
Fortune gotten unawares, and much I hoped soon to see my 
two frjends, Sa'd and Sa'di, and to thank them likewise. So 
first I set my house in order and gave spending-money to my wife 
for home-necessaries and for clothing herself and children ; more- 
over, I also bought me a fine mansion and furnished it with the 
best. Then said I to my wife, who thought of nothing save rich 
clothes and high diet and a life of ease and enjoyment, " It 
behoveth us not to give up this our craft : we must needs put by 
some coin and carry on the business." Accordingly, I went to 
all the rope-makers of the city and buying with much money 
several manufactories put them to work, and over each establish- 
ment I set an overseer, an intelligent man and a trustworthy, so 
that there is not now throughout Baghdad-city a single ward or 
quarter that hath not walks and workshops of mine for rope-making. 
Nay, further, I have in each town and every district of Al-Irak 
warehouses, all under charge of honest supef visors ; and thus it is 
that I have amassed such a muchel of wealth. Lastly, for my 
own especial place of business I bought another house, a ruined 
place with a sufficiency of land adjoining ; and, pulling down the 
old shell, I edified in lieu thereof the new and spacious edifice 
which thy Highness hath deigned yesterday to look upon. Here all 

History of Kkwajah Hasan al-Habbal. 359 

my workmen are lodged and here also are kept my office-books 
and accounts ; and besides my warehouse it containeth apart- 
ments fitted with furniture in simple style all-sufficient for myself 
and my family. After some time I quitted my old home, wherein 
Sa'd and Sa'di had seen me working, and went and lived in the new 
mansion and not long after this removal my two friends and bene- 
factors bethought them that they would come and visit me. They 
marvelled much when, entering my old workshop, they found m6 
not, and they asked the neighbours, "Where dwelleth such and 
such a rope- maker ? Is he alive or dead ?" Quoth the folk 
" He now is a rich merchant ; and men no longer call him simply 
' Hasan/ but entitle him ' Master Hasan the Rope-maker.' He 
hath built him a splendid building and he dwelleth in such and 
such a quarter." Whereupon the two familiars set forth in search 
of me ; and they rejoiced at the good report ; albeit Sa'di would 
by no means be convinced that all my wealth had sprung (as 
Sa'd contended) from its root, that small leaden coin. Presently, 
conning the matter over in his mind he said to his comrade, " It 
delighteth me much to hear of all this good fortune which hath 
betided Hasan, despite that he twice deceived me and took from 
me four hundred gold pieces, whereby he hath gotten to himself 
these riches ; for it is absurd to think that it hath come from the 
leaden coin thou gavest him. Withal I do forgive him and owe him 
no grudge." Replied the other, "Thou art mistaken. I know 
Hasan of old to be a good man and true : he would not delude 
thee and what he told us is simple sooth. I am persuaded in .my 
mind that he hath won all his wealth and opulence by the leaden 
coin : however we shall hear anon what he may have to say." 
Conversing thus they came into the street wherein I now dwell 
and, seeing a large and magnificent mansion and a new-made, 
they guessed it was mine. So they knocked and, on the porter 
opening, Sa'di marvelled to see such grandeur and so many 
folk sitting within, and feared lest haply they had unwittingly 

Supplemental Nights. 

entered the house of some Emir. Then plucking courage he 
enquired of the porter, " Is this the dwelling place of Khwajah 

Hasan al-Habbal ?" And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad 

held her peace till 

2n&e en* of t&e Sbfx f^unimfc anfc to*ntg*secon& Wjj&t, 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Hasan 

al-Habbal continued thus his story : The porter made reply, 
" This is verily the house of Khwajah Hasan al-Habbal ; he is 
within and he sitteth in his office. I pray thee enter and one of the 
slaves will make known thy coming to him." Hereupon the two 
friends walked in, and as soon as I saw them I recognised them, 
and rising up to them I ran and kissed the hems of their garments. 
They would fain have fallen on my neck and embraced me, but 
with meekness of mind I would not suffer them so to do ; and 
presently I led them into a large and spacious saloon, and bade 
them sit upon the highmost seats of honour. They would have con- 
strained me to take the best place, but I .exclaimed, " O my lords, 
I am on no wise better than the poor rope-maker Hasan, who not 
unmindful of your worth and goodness ever prayeth for your wel- 
fare, and who deserveth not to sit in higher stead than you." 
Then they took seat and I opposite them, when quoth Sa'di, " My 
heart rejoiceth with exceeding joy to see thee in this condition, for 
that Allah hath given thee all even as thou wishedst. I doubt not 
thou has gotten all this abundance and opulence by means of the 
four hundred gold pieces which I gave to thee ; but say me truly 
wherefore didst thou twice deceive me and bespeak me falsely ? " 
Sa'd listened to these words with silent indignation, and ere I could 
make reply he broke out saying, " O Sa'di, how often have I assured 
thee that all which Hasan said aforetime anent the losing of the 
Ashrafis is very sooth and no leasing ? " Then they began to 
dispute each with other ; when I, recovering from my surprise, 

History of Khwajak Hasan al-Habbal. 361 

txclairaed, " O my lords, of what avail is this contention ? Be not 
at variance, I beseech you, on my account. All that had befallen 
me I made known to you ; and, whether ye believe my words or 
ye believe them not, it mattereth but little. Now hearken to the 
whole truth of my tale." Then I made known to them the story 
of the piece of lead which I had given to the fisherman and of 
the diamond found in the fish's belly ; brief, I told them every 
whit even as I have now related to thy Highness. On hearing all 
my adventure Sa'di said, " O Khwajah Hasan, it seemeth to me 
passing strange that so great a diamond should be found in the 
belly of a fish ; and I deem it a thing impossible that a kite 
should fly off with thy turband, or that thy wife should give away 
the jar of bran in exchange for fuller's earth. Thou sayest the 
tale is true, still can I not give credit to thy words, for I know full 
well that the four hundred gold pieces have gotten thee all this 
wealth." But when they twain rose up to take their leave, I also 
arose and said, " O my lords, ye have shown favour to me in that 
ye have thus deigned visit me in my poor home. I beseech you 
now to taste of my food and to tarry here this night under your 
servant's roof; as to-morrow I would fain take you by the way of 
the river to a country-house which I have lately bought." Hereto 
they consented with some objections ; and I, after giving orders 
for the evening-meal, showed them about the house and displayed 
the furniture and entertained them with pleasing words and 
pleasant converse, till a slave came and announced that supper was 
served. So I led them to the saloon wherein were ranged the trays 
loaded with many kinds of meats ; on all sides stood camphorated 
wax candles, 1 and before the table were gathered musicians singing 
and playing on various instruments of mirth and merriment, whilst 
in the upper part of the saloon men and women were dancing and 
making much diversion. When we had supped we went to bed, 

1 This uc of camphor is noted by Gibbon (D. and F. fu. 195.) 

Supplemental Nights. 

and rising early we prayed the dawn-prayer, and presently em- 
barked on a large and well-appointed boat, and the rowers rowing 
with a flowing tide soon landed us at my country seat Then we 
strolled in a body about the grounds and entered the house, when 
I showed them our new buildings and displayed to them all that 
appertained thereto ; and hereat they marvelled with great marvel 
Thence we repaired to the garden -and saw, planted in rows along 
the walks, fruit-trees of all kinds with ripe fruit bowed down, and 
watered with water from the river by means of brick-work channels. 
All round were flowering shrubs whose perfume gladdened the 
Zephyr ; here and there fountains and jets of water shot high 
in air ; and sweet-voiced birds made melody amid the leafy 
branches hymning the One, the Eternal ; in short, the sights and 
scents on every side filled the soul with joy and gladness. My two 
friends walked about in joyance and delight, and thanked me again 
and again for bringing them to so lovely a site and said, "Almighty 
Allah prosper thee in house and garth." At last I led them to 
the foot of a tall tree near to one of the garden walls and shewed 
them a little summer-house wherein I was wont to take rest and 
refreshment ; and the room was furnished with cushions and 

divans and pillows purfled with virgin gold. And as the morn 

began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

of tje Sbix un&rrtj anfc 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Hasan 
al-Habbal thus pursued his tale : Now so it happened that, as we 
sat at rest within that summer-house, two sons of mine, whom I 
had sent together with their governor to my country-place for 
change of water and air, 1 were roaming about the garden seeking 
birds' nests. Presently they came across a big one upon the top- 

1 " Ab o hawa " =climate : see vol. ii. 4. 

History of Khwajah Hasan al-Habbal. 3^3 

most boughs and tried to swarm up the trunk and carry it off, but 
by reason of their lack of strength and little practice they durst 
not venture so high ; whereupon they bade a slave-boy who 
ever attended on them, climb the tree. H did their bidding, but 
when looking into the nest he was amazed with exceeding amaze- 
ment to see it mainly made of an old turband. So he brought 
down the stuff and handed it to the lads. My eldest son took it 
from his hands and carried it to the arbour for me to see, and set 
It at my feet saying in high glee, " O my father, look here ; this 
nest is made of cloth." Sa'd and Sa'di wondered with all wonder- 
ment at the sight and the marvel grew the greater when I, after 
considering it closely, recognised it for the very turband whereon 
the kite had swooped and which had been borne off by the bird. 
Then quoth I to my two friends, " Examine well this turband and 
certify yourselves that it is the selfsame one worn upon my head 
when first ye honoured me with your presence." Quoth Sa'd, " I 
know it not," and quoth Sa'di, "An thou find within it the 
hundred and ninety gold pieces, then shalt thou be assured that is 
thy turband in very sooth." I said, " O my lord, this is, well I wot, 
that very turband." And as I held it in my hand, I found it heavy 
of weight, and opening out the folds felt somewhat tied up in one 
of the corners of the cloth ; l so I unrolled the swathes when lo and 
behold ! I came upon the purse of gold pieces. Hereat, shewing 
it to Sa'di, I cried, " Canst thou not recognise this purse ? " and he 
replied, " Tis in truth the very purse of Ashrafis which I gave thee 
when first we met." Then I opened the mouth and, pouring out 
the gold in one heap upon the carpet, bade him count his money ; 
and he turned it over coin by coin and made the sum thereof one 
hundred and ninety Ashrafis. Hereat waxing sore ashamed and 
confounded, he exclaimed, " Now do I believe thy words : never- 
theless must thou admit that thou hast earned one-half of this thy 

1 Galland nukes this article a linen cloth wrapped about the tkull-cap or core of the 


Supplemental Nights. 

prodigious wealth with the two hundred gold pieces I gave thee 
after our second visit, and the other half by means of the mite 
thou gottest from Sa'd." To this I made no answer, but my 
friends ceased not to dispute upon the matter. We then sat down 
to meat and drink, and when we had eaten our sufficiency, I and 
my two friends went to sleep in the cool arbour ; after which when 
the sun was well nigh set we mounted and rode off to Baghdad 
kaving the servants to follow. However, arrived at the city we 
found all the shops shut and nowhere could we get grain and 
forage for the horses, and I sent off two slave-boys who had run 
alongside of us to search for provender. One of them found a jar 
of bran in the shop of a corn-dealer and paying for the provision 
brought it, together with the jar, under promise that on the morrow 
he would carry back the vessel. Then he began to take out the 
bran by handfuls in the dark and to set it before the horses, 

And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her 

peace till 

6e cnfc of tfie Sbix f^untafc anU ^focntg-fourtf) jSig&t. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious king, that Hasan al- 

Habbal thus continued his story : So as the slave-boy took out 
the bran by handfuls and set it before the horses, suddenly his 
hand came upon a piece of cloth wherein was somewhat heavy. 
He brought it to me even as he found it and said, " See, is not this 
cloth the very one of whose loss thou hast ofttimes spoken to us?" 
I took it and wondering with great wonder knew it was the self- 
same piece of stuff wherein I had tied up the hundred and fourscore 
and ten Ashrafis before hiding them in the jar of bran. Then said 
I to my friends, " O my lords, it hath pleased Almighty Allah, 
ere we parted, I and you, to bear me witness of my words and to 
stablish that I told you naught save whatso was very sooth." And 
I resumed, addressing Sa'di, " See here the other sum of money, 

History of Khwajah Hasan al-Habbal. 365 

that is, the hundred and ninety Ashrafis which thou gavest me 
and which I tied up in this very piece of cloth I now recognise.** 
Then I sent for the earthen jar that they might see it, and also 
bade carry it to my wife that she also might bear witness, an it be 
or be not the very bran jar which she gave in exchange for fuller's 
earth. Anon she sent us word and said, " Yea verily I know it 
well. 'Tis the same jar which I had filled with bran." Accord- 
ingly Sa'di owned that he was wrong and said to S'ad, " Now I 
know that thou speakest truth, and am convinced that wealth 
cometh not by wealth ; but only by the grace of Almighty Allah 
doth a poor man become a rich man." And he begged pardon for 
his mistrust and unbelief. We accepted his excuses whereupon we 
retired to rest and early on the morrow my two friends bade me 
adieu and journeyed homewards with full persuasion that I had 
done no wrong and had not squandered the moneys they had given 
me. Now when the Caliph Harun al-Rashid had heard the story 
of Khwajah Hasan to the end, he said, " I have known thee of old 
by fair report of thee from the folk who, one and all, declare that 
thou art a good man and true. Moreover the self-same diamond 
whereby thou hast attained to so great riches is now in my treasury ; 
so I would fain send for Sa'di forthright that he may see it with 
his own eyes, and weet for certain that not by means of money do 
men become or rich or poor." The Prince of True Believers said 
moreover to Khwajah Hasan al-Habbal, * Go now and tell thy 
tale to my treasurer that he may take it down in writing for an 
everlasting memorial, and place the writ in the treasury together 
with the diamond." Then the Caliph with a nod dismissed 
Khwajah Hasan ; and Sidi Nu'uman and Baba Abdullah also 
kissed the foot of the throne and departed. So when Queen 
Shahrazad had made an end of relating this history she was about 
to begin the story of 'AH Baba and the Forty Thieves, but King 
Shahryar prevented her, saying, " O Shahrazad, I am well pleased 
with this thy tale, but now the dawn appeareth and the chanticleer 

306 Supplemental Nights. 

of morn doth sound his shrill clarion, This day also 1 spare 
thy life, to the intent that I may listen at my ease to this new 
history of thine at the end of the coming night/' Hereupon 
the three took their rest until the fittest time drew near. - 
And as the morning morrowed Shahrazad held her peace till 

cnfl of t&* SbiK f^untotr mrt fotnts=fiftf) 

WITH the dawn Dunyazad awoke Queen Shahrazad from slumber 
sweet and said, " Arise, O my sister, but alas ! 'tis a bitter 
thing to stand in awe of coming doom." Replied Shahrazad, " O 
dear my sister, be not thou downhearted : if life's span be spent 
naught can avert the sharp-edged sword. Yet place thy trust in 
Allah Almighty and put far from thee all such anxious thoughts ; 
my tales are tokens of life prolonged." Whereupon Queen 
Shahrazad began to tell in these words the story of 



IN days of yore and in times and tides long gone before there 
dwelt in a certain town of Persia two brothers one named Kasim 
and the other 'AU Baba, who at their father's demise had divided 
the little wealth he had left to them with equitable division, and 
had lost no time in wasting and spending it all. The elder, how- 
ever, presently took to himself a wife, the daughter of an opulent 
merchant ; so that when his father-in-law fared to the mercy of 
Almighty Allah, he became owner of a large shop filled with rare 
goods and costly wares and of a storehouse stocked with precious 
stuffs ; likewise of much gold that was buried in the ground. Thus 
was he known throughout the city as a substantial man. But the 
woman whom Ali Baba had married was poor and needy ; they 
lived, therefore, in a mean hovel and Ali Baba eked out a scanty 
livelihood by the sale of fuel which he daily collected in the jungle 1 
and carried about the town to the Bazar upon his three asses. Now 
it chanced one day that Ali Baba had cut dead branches and dry 
fuel sufficient for his need, and had placed the load upon his beasts 
when suddenly he espied a dust-cloud spireing high in air to his 
.right and moving rapidly towards him ; and when he closely con* 
sidered it he descried a troop of horsemen riding on amain and 
about to reach him. At this sight he was sore alarmed, and fearing 
lest perchance they were a band of bandits who would slay him 

1 Mr. Coote (he. fit. p. 185) is unable to produce a putnmytke containing all of " Ali 
B4ba ; " but, for the two leading incidents he quotes from Prof. Sakellarios two tales 
collected in Cyprus. One is Morgiana marking the village doors (p. 187), which has 
occurred doubtless a hundred time*. The other, in the Story of Drakos," is an ogre, bight 
"Three Eyes," who attempts the rescue of his wife with a party of blackamoors 
(fMvpovt) packed in bale* and these are all discovered and slain. 

' Dans lafortt t says Gallaad, 


Supplemental Nights. 

and drive off his donkeys, in his affright he began to run; but foras- 
much as they were near hand and he could not escape from out the 
forest, he drove his animals laden with the fuel into a bye-Way of 
the bushes and swarmed up a thick trunk of a huge tree to hide 
himself therein ; and he sat upon a branch whence he could descry 
everything beneath him whilst none below could catch a glimpse 
of him above ; and that tree grew close beside a rock which 
towered high above-head. The horsemen, young, active, and 
doughty riders, came close up to the rock-face and all dismounted ; 
whereat Ali Baba took good note of them and soon he was fully 
persuaded by their mien and demeanour that they were a troop of 
highwaymen who, having fallen upon a caravan had despoiled it 
and carried off the spoil and brought their booty to this place with 
intent of concealing it safely in some cache. Moreover he observed 
that they were forty in number. - And as the morn began to 
dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

en* of tje S>tx J^unbtefc anb {foentg=gfxrt) 

THEN said she : I have heard, O auspicious king, that Ali Baba 
saw the robbers, as soon as they came under the tree, each un- 
bridle his horse and hobble it ; then all took off their saddle-bags 
which proved to be full of gold and silver. The man who 
seemed to be the captain presently pushed forwards, load on 
shoulder, through thorns and thickets, till he came up to a certain 
spot where he uttered these strange words, " Open, O Simsim I'" 1 

1 Or "Samsam," The grain =Scsamwn Oriental : hence the French, Sesame, wort* 
toil The term is cabalistical, like Sulem, Sulara or Shulara in the Directorium Vita 
Humana of Johannes di Capud : Inquit vir : Ibam in nocte plenilunii et ascendebara 
super domum ubi furari intendebam, et accedens ad feneslram ubi radii lune ingredie- 
bantur, et dicebam hanc coniurationem, scilicet sulem sulem, septies, deinde amplectebar 
lumen lune et sine lesione descendebam ad domum, etc. (pp. 24-25) par Joseph 
Derenbourg, Merobre de 1'Institut i* Fascicule, Paris, F. Vieweg, 67, Rue de Richelieu, 

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. 37* 

and forthwith appeared a wide doorway in the face of the rock. 
The robbers went in and last of all their Chief and then the portal 
shut of itself. Long while they stayed within the cave whilst All 
Baba was constrained to abide perched upon the tree, reflecting 
that if he came down peradventure the band might issue forth 
that very moment and seize him and slay him. At last he had 
determined to mount one of the horses and driving on his asses to 
return townwards, when suddenly the portal flew open. The 
robber-chief was first to issue forth ; then, standing at the entrance, 
he saw and counted his men as they came out, and lastly he spake 
the magical words," Shut, O Simsim ! " whereat the door closed of 
itself. When all had passed muster and review, each slung on his 
saddle-bags and bridled his own horse and as soon as ready they rode 
off, led by the leader, in the direction whence they came. AH Baba 
remained still perched on the tree and watched their departure ; nor 
would he descend until what time they were clean gone out of sight, 
lest perchance one of them return and look around and descry him. 
Then he thought within himself, ' I too will try the virtue of those 
magical words and see if at my bidding the door will open and 
close." So he called out aloud, " Open, O Simsim !". And no 
sooner had he spoken than straightway the portal flew open and 
he entered within. He saw a large cavern and a vaulted, in height 
equalling the stature of a full-grown man and it was hewn in the 
live stone and lighted up with light that came through air-holes' 
and bullseyes in the upper surface of the rock which formed the 
roof. He had expected to find naught save outer gloom in this 
robbers' den, and he was surprised to see the whole room filled with 
bales of all manner stuffs, and heaped up from sole to ceiling with 
camel-loads of silks and brocades and embroidered cloths and 
mounds on mounds of vari-coloured carpetings ; besides which he 
espied coins golden and silvern without measure or account, some 
piled upon the ground and others bound in leathern bags and 
sacks. Seeing these goods and moneys in such abundance, All 

372 Supplemental Nights. 

Baba determined in his mind that not during a few years only but 
for many generations thieves must have stored their gains and 
spoils in this place. When he stood within the cave, its door had 
closed upon him, yet he was not dismayed since, he had kept in 
memory the magical words ; and he took no heed of the precious 
stuffs around him, but applied himself only and wholly to the sacks 
of Ashrafis. Of these he carried out as many as he judged suffi- 
cient burthen for the beasts ; then he loaded them upon his animals, 
and covered this plunder with sticks and fuel, so none might 
discern the bags, but might think that he was carrying home his 
usual ware. Lastly he called out, " Shut, O Simsim ! " and forth- 
with the door closed, for the spell so wrought that whensoever any 
entered the cave, its portal shut of itself behind him ; and, as he 
issued therefrom, the same would neither open nor close again till 
he had pronounced the words, "Shut, O Simsim! " Presently, having 
laden his asses Ali Baba urged them before him with all speed 
to the city and reaching home he drove them into the yard ; and, 
shutting close the outer door, took down first the sticks and fuel 
and after the bags of gold which he carried in to his wife. She felt 
them and finding them full of coin suspected that Ali Baba had 
been robbing and fell to berating and blaming him for that he 
should do so ill a thing. - And as the morn began to dawn 
Shahrazad held her peace till 

cnlr of t&e gbfa l^un&trtJ anfc 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that quoth 
Ali Baba to his wife : " Indeed I am no robber and rather do thou 
rejoice with me at our good fortune." Hereupon he told her of 
his adventure and began to pour the gold from the bags in heaps 
before her, and her sight was dazzled by the sheen and her heart 
delighted at his recital and adventures. Then she began counting 
the gold, whereat quoth Ali Baba, " O silly woman, how long wilt 

Alt Baba and the Forty 1 hieves. 373 

thou continue turning over the coin ? now let me dig a hole wherein 
to hide this treasure that none may know its secret." Quoth she, 
' Right is thy rede ! still would I weigh the moneys and have some 
inkling of their amount ; " and he replied, " As thou pleasest, but 
see thou tell no man." So she went off in haste to Kasim's home 
to borrow weights and scales wherewith she might balance the 
Ashrafis and make some reckoning of their value ; and when she 
could not find Kacim she said to his wife, " Lend me, I pray thee, 
thy scales for a moment." Replied her sister-in-law, 1 " Hast thou 
need of the bigger balance or the smaller ? " ancT the other 
rejoined, " I need not the large scales, give me the little ; " and 
her sister-in-law cried, " Stay here a moment whilst I look about 
and find thy want." With this pretext Kasim's wife went aside 
and secretly smeared wax and suet over the pan of the balance, 
that she might know what thing it was Ali Baba's wife would 
weigh, for she made sure that whatso it be some bit thereof would 
stick to the wax and fat. So the woman took this opportunity to 
satisfy her curiosity, and Ali Baba's wife suspecting naught thereof 
carried home the scales and began to weigh the gold, whilst Ali 
Baba ceased not digging ; and, when the money was weighed, 
they twain stowed it into the hole which they carefully filled up 
with earth. Then the good wife took back the scales to her 
kinswoman, all unknowing that an Ashrafi had adhered to the 
cup of the scales ; but when Kasim's wife espied the gold coin 
he fumed with envy and wrath, saying to herself, " So ho ! they 
borrowed my balance to weigh out Ashrafis ? " and she marvelled 
greatly whence so poor a man as Ali Baba had gotten such store 
of wealth that he should be obliged to weigh it with a pair of 
scales. Now after long pondering the matter, when her husband 

1 In the text " Jathini " = thc wife of an elder brother. Hindostani, like other Eastern 
languages, is rich in terms for kinship whereof English is so exceptionally poor. Mr. 
Francis Galtson, in his well-known work " Hereditary Genius," a misnomer by the by 
fci " Hereditary Talent/' fell this want severely and was at pains to sipply il. 

Supplemental Nights. 

returned home at eventide, she said to him, " O man, thou deemest 
thyself a wight of wealth and substance, but lo, thy brother AH 
Baba is an Emir by the side of thee and richer far than thou art. 
He hath such heaps of gold that he must needs weigh his moneys 
with scales, whilst thou, forsooth, art satisfied to count thy coin." 
" Whence knowe'st thou this ? " asked Kasim, and in answer his 
wife related all anent the pair of scales and how she found an 
Ashrafi stuck to them, and shewed him the gold coin which bore 
the mark and superscription of some ancient king. No sleep had 
Kasim all that night by reason of his envy and jealousy and 
covetise ; and next morning he rose betimes and going to All 
Baba said, " O my brother, to all appearance thou art poor and 
needy; but in effect thou hast a store of wealth so abundant 
that perforce thou must weigh thy gold with scales." Quoth AH 
Baba, " What is this thou sayest ? I understand thee not ; make 
clear thy purport; " and quoth Kasim with ready rage, " Feign not 
that thou art ignorant of what I say and think not to deceive me." 
Then showing him the Ashrafi he cried, " Thousands of gold coins 
such as these thou hast put by ; and meanwhile my wife found 
this one stuck to the cup of the scales." Then Ali Baba under- 
stood how both Kasim and his wife knew that he had store of 
Ashrafis, and said in his mind that it would not avail him to keep 
the matter hidden, but would rather cause ill-will and mischief ; 
and thus he was induced to tell his brother every whit concerning 
the bandits 1 and also of the treasure trove in the cave. When he 
had heard the story, Kasim exclaimed, " I would fain learn of thee 

1 In the text "Thag," our English "Thug," often pronounced moreover by the 
Briton with tKe sibilant " th." It means simply a cheat : you say to your servant " Tft 
bard Thag hai " = thou art a precious rascal ; but it has also the secondary meaning of 
robber, assassin, and the tertiary of Bhawani-worshippers who offer indiscriminate 
human sacrifices to the Dee'ss of Destruction. The word and the thing have been made 
popular in England through the " Confessions of a Thug " by my late friend Meadows 
Taylor ; and I may record my conviction that were the English driven out of India, 
"Thuggee," like piracy in Cutch and in the Persian Gulf, would revive at the shortest 
possible time. 

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. 


the certainty of the place where thou foundest the moneys ; also 
the magical words whereby the door opened and closed ; and I 
forewarn thee an thou tell me not the whole truth, I will give 
notice of those Ashrafis to the Waif ; l then shall thou forfeit all 
thy wealth and be disgraced and thrown into gaol." Thereupon 
AH Baba told him his tale not forgetting the magical words ; and 
Kasim who kept careful heed of all these matters next day set out, 
driving ten mules he had hired, and readily found the place which 
AH Baba had described to him. And when he came to the afore- 
said rock and to the tree whereon AH Baba had hidden himself, 
and he had made sure of the door he cried in great joy, " Open, 
O Simsim ! " The portal yawned wide at once and Kasim went 
within and saw the piles of jewels and treasures lying ranged all 
around ; and, as soon as he stood amongst them the door shut 
after him as wont to do. He walked about in ecstasy marvelling 
at the treasures, and when weary of admiration he gathered 
together bags of Ashrafis, a sufficient load for his ten mules, and 
placed them by the entrance in readiness to be carried outside and 
set upon the beasts. But by the will of Allah Almighty he had 
clean forgotten the cabalistic words and cried out, "Open, O 
Barley ! " whereat the door refused to move. Astonished and con- 
fused beyond measure he named the names of all manner of grains 
save sesame, which had slipped from his memory as though he had 
never heard the word ; whereat in his dire distress he heeded not the 
Ashrafis that lay heaped at the entrance and paced to and fro, 
backwards and forwards, within the cave sorely puzzled and per- 
plexed. The wealth whose sight had erewhile filled his heart with 
joy and gladness was now the cause of bitter grief and sadness. 
And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

. the Civil Governor, who would want nothing betUr. 

376 Supplemental Nights. 

enfc of t&e S>fo f^untorefc antr ^foentg-efg&tf) Kt'gfit 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Kasim 
gave up all hope of the life which he by his greed and envy had 
so sore imperilled. It came to pass that at noontide the robbers, 
returning by that way, saw from afar some mules standing beside the 
entrance and much they marvelled at what had brought the beasts 
to that place ; for, inasmuch as Kasim by mischance had failed to 
tether or hobble them, they had strayed about the jungle and were 
browsing hither and thither. However, the thieves paid scant 
regard to the estrays nor cared they to secure them, but only 
wondered by what means they had wandered so far from the 
town. Then, reaching the cave the Captain and his troop dis- 
mounted and going up to the door repeated the formula and at 
once it flew open. Now Kasim had heard from within the cave 
the horse-hooves drawing nigh and yet nigher ; and he fell down 
to the ground in a fit of fear never doubting that it was the clatter 
of the banditti who would slaughter him without fail. Howbeit he 
presently took heart of grace and at the moment when the door 
flew open he rushed out hoping to make good his escape. But the 
unhappy ran full tilt against the Captain who stood in front of the 
band, and felled him to the ground ; whereupon a robber standing 
near his chief at once bared his brand and with one cut clave Kasim 
clean in twain. Thereupon the robbers rushed into the cavern, and 
put back as they were before the bags of Ashrafis which Kasim 
had heaped up at the doorway ready for taking away ; nor recked 
they aught of those which AH Baba had removed, so dazed and 
amazed were they to discover by what means the strange man had 
effected an entrance. All knew that it was not possible for any to 
drop through the skylights so tall and steep was the rock's face, 
withal slippery of ascent ; and also that none could enter by the 
portal unless he knew the magical words whereby to open it. 
However they presently quartered the dead body of Kasim and 

Ali Baba and tht Forty Thirvts. 377 

hung it to the door within the cavern, two parts to the right jamb 
and as many to the left 1 that the sight might be a warning of 
approaching doom for all who dared enter the cave. Then coming 
out they closed the hoard door and rode away upon their wonted 
work. Now when night fell and Kasim came not home, his wife 
waxed uneasy in mind and running round to Alt Baba said, " O 
my brother, Kasim hath not returned : thou knowest whither he 
went, and sore I fear me some misfortune hath betided him." Ali 
Baba also divined that a mishap had happened to prevent his 
return ; not the less, however, he strove to comfort his sister-in-law 
with words of cheer and said, " O wife of my brother, Kasim haply 
exerciseth discretion and, avoiding the city, cometh by a round- 
about road and will be here anon. This, I do believe, is the reason 
why he tarrieth." Thereupon comforted in spirit Kasim's wife 
fared homewards and sat awaiting her husband's return ; but when 
half the night was spent and still he came not, she was as one 
distraught. She feared to cry aloud for her grief, lest haply the 
neighbours hearing her should come and learn the secret ; so she 
wept in silence and upbraiding herself fell to thinking, " Wherefore 
did I disclose this secret to him and beget envy and jealousy of 
Ali Baba ? this be the fruit thereof and hence the disaster that hath 
come down upon me." She ^pent the rest of the night in bitter 
tears and early on the morrow hied in hottest hurry to Ali Baba 
and prayed that he would go forth in quest of his brother ; so he 
strove to console her and straightway set out with his asses for the 
forest. Presently, reaching the rock he wondered to see stains of 
blood freshly shed and not finding his brother or the ten mules he 
forefelt a calamity from so evil a sign. He then went to the door 
and saving, " Open, O Simsim ! " he pushed in and saw the 
dead body of Kasim, two parts hanging to the right, and the rest 

1 This is in Galland and it U followed by the H. V. ; but it would be more natural to 
oppose that of the quarters two were hung up outside the door and the other* withia. 

378 Supplemental Nights. 

to the left of the entrance. Albeit he was affrighted beyond 
measure of affright he wrapped the quarters in two cloths and laid 
them upon one of his asses, hiding them carefully with sticks and 
fuel that none might see them. Then he placed the bags of gold 
upon the two other animals and likewise covered them most 
carefully ; and, when all was made ready he closed the cave-door 
with the magical words, and set him forth wending homewards with 
all ward and watchfulness. The asses with the load of Ashrafis he 
made over to his wife and bade her bury the bags with diligence ; 
but he told her not the condition in which he had come upon his 
orother Kasim. Then he went with the other ass, to wit, the beast 
whereon was laid the corpse to the widow's house and knocked 
gently at the door. Now Kasim had a slave-girl shrewd and 
sharp-witted, Morgiana 1 hight. She as softly undid the bolt and 
admitted AH Baba and the ass into the courtyard of the house, 
when he let down the body from the beast's back and said, " O 
Morgiana, haste thee and make thee ready to perform the rites for 
the burial of thy lord : I now go to tell the tidings to thy mistress 
and I will quickly return to help thee in this matter." At that 
instant Kasim's widow seeing her brother-in-law, exclaimed, " O 
AH Baba, what news bringest thou of my spouse ? Alas, I see 
grief tokens written upon thy countenance. Say quickly what 
hath happened." Then he recounted to her how it had fared with 
her husband and how he had been slain by the robbers and in what 
wise he had brought home the dead body. - And as the morn 
began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

en* of t&e S>fx ^imfcrefc an* ^foentg-nfotj) 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that AH 
Baba pursued : " O my lady, what was to happen hath happened, 

1 I am unwilling to alter the time honoured corruption : properly it is written 
Marjinah = thc V Coralline," from Marjan = red coral, for which see vols. ii, 100 ; vii. 373. 

Ali Baba and the Forty Thiews. 379 

but it behoveth us to keep this matter secret, for that our lives 
depend upon privacy." She wept with sore weeping and made 
answer, " It hath fared with my husband according to the fiat of 
Fate ; and now for thy safety's sake I give thee my word to keep 
the affair concealed." He replied, " Naught can avail when Allah 
hath decreed. Rest thee in patience; until the days of thy 
widowhood 1 be accomplish! ; after which time I will take thee to 
wife, and thou shalt live in comfort and happiness ; and fear not 
lest my first spouse vex thee or show aught of jealousy, for that 
she is kindly and tender of heart." The widow lamenting her 
loss noisily, cried, " Be it as e'en thou please." Then Ali Baba 
farewelled her, weeping and wailing for her husband ; and joining 
Morgiana took counsel with her how to manage the burial of his 
brother. So, after much consultation and many warnings, he left 
the slave-girl and departed home driving his ass before him. As 
soon as Ali Baba had fared forth Morgiana went quickly to a 
druggist's shop ; and, that she might the better dissemble with 
him and not make known the matter, she asked of him a drug 
often administered to men when diseased with dangerous distemper. 
He gave it saying, " Who is there in thy house that lieth so ill as 
to require this medicine?" and said she, "My Master Kasim is 
sick well nigh unto death : for many days he hath nor spoken nor 
tasted aught of food, so that almost we despair of his life." Next 
day Morgiana went again and asked the druggist for more of 
medicine and essences such as are adhibited to the sick when at 
door of death, that the moribund may haply rally before the 
last breath. The man gave the potion and she taking it sighed 
aloud and wept, saying, " I fear me he may not have strength to 
drink this draught : methinks all will be over with him ere I return 
to the house." Meanwhile Ali Baba was anxiously awaiting to 
hear sounds of wailing and lamentation in Kasim's home that be 

1 i.e. the " 'Iddfth," during which the could not marry. See vol. iii. 992. 

380 Supplemental Nights. 

might at such signal hasten thither and take part in the ceremonies 
of the funeral. Early on the second day Morgiana went with 
veiled face to one Babd Mustafa, 1 a tailor well shotten in years 
whose craft was to make shrouds and cerecloths ; and as soon as 
she saw him open his shop she gave him a gold piece and said, 
"Do thou bind a bandage over thine eyes and come along with 
me." Mustafa made as though he would not go, whereat 
Morgiana placed a second gold coin in his palm and entreated 
him to accompany her. The tailor presently consented for greed 
of gain, so tying a kerchief tightly over his eyes she led him by 
the hand to the house wherein lay the dead body of her master. 
Then, taking off the bandage in the darkened room she bade him 
sew together the quarters of the corpse, limb to its limb ; and, cast- 
ing a cloth upon the body, said to the tailor, " Make haste and sew 
a shroud according to the size of this dead man and I will give 
thee therefor yet another ducat." Baba Mustafa quickly made the 
cere cloth of fitting length and breadth, and Morgiana paid him 
the promised Ashrafi ; then once more bandaging his eyes led him 
back to the place whence she had brought him. After this she 
returned hurriedly home and with the help of Ali Baba washed 
the body, in warm water and donning the shroud lay the corpse 
upon a clean place ready for burial. This done Morgiana went 
to the mosque and gave notice to an Imdm 2 that a funeral was 
awaiting the mourners in a certain household, and prayed that he 
would come to read the prayers for the dead ; and the Imam went 
back with her. Then four neighbours took up the bier 3 and bore 

1 In Galland he is a savetier * * * naturellementgai t etquiavaittoujoursleniot 
pour rire: the H.V. naturally changed him to a tailor as the Cha"ma"r or leather- worker 
would be inadmissible to polite conversation. 

8 i.e. a leader of prayer; the Pers. "Pfsh-namaz" = fore-prayer, see vols. ii. 203? 
iv. ill and 227. Galland has "{rosin," which can mean only faith, belief, and in thi s 
blunder he is conscientiously followed by his translators servum pecus. 

3 Galland.nails down the corpse in the bier a Christian practice and he certainly 
knew better. Moreover, prayers for the dead are mostly recited over the bier when 
placed upon the brink of the grave ; nor is it usual for a woman to play so prominent a 
part in the ceremony. 

All Baba and thi Forty Thieves. 381 

it on tPdr shoulders and fared forth with the Imam and others 
who were wont to give assistance at such obsequies. After the 
funeral prayers were ended four other men carried off the coffin ; 
and Morgiana walked before it bare of head, striking her breast 
and weeping and wailing with exceeding loud lament, whilst Ali 
Baba and the neighbours came behind. In such order they 
entered the cemetery and buried him ; then, leaving him to Munkar 
and Nakir 1 the Questioners of the Dead all wended their ways. 
Presently the women of the quarter, according to the custom of the 
city, gathered together in the house of mourning and sat an hour 
with Kasim's widow comforting and condoling, presently leaving 
her somewhat resigned and cheered. Ali Baba stayed forty days 
at home in ceremonial lamentation for the loss of his brother ; so 
none within the town save himself and his wife (Kasim's widow) 
and Morgiana knew aught about the secret. And when the forty 
days of mourning were ended Ali Baba removed to his own 
quarters all the property belonging to the deceased and openly 
married the widow ; then he appointed his nephew, his brother's 
eldest son, who had lived a long time with a wealthy merchant 
and was perfect of knowledge in all matters of trade, such as selling 
and buying, to take charge of the defunct's shop and to carry on 
the business. - And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held 
her peace till 

f)c tnto of tfjt &(x ftun&rrt anb 2T&irtter!) 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, it so chanced 
one day when the robbers, as was their wont, came to the treasure- 
cave that they marvelled exceedingly to find nor sign nor trace of 
Kasim's body whilst they observed that much of gold had been 
carried off. Quoth the Captain, " Now it behoveth us to make 

1 See voU. v. in ; ix. 163 tod x. 47. 

382 Supplemental Nights. 

enquiry in this matter ; else shall we suffer much of loss artd this 
our treasure, which we and our forefathers have amassed during 
the course of many years, will little by little be wasted and 
spoiled." Hereto all assented and with single mind agreed that 
he whom they had slain had knowledge of the magical words 
whereby the door was made to open ; moreover that some one 
beside him had cognizance of the spell and had carried off the 
body, and also much of gold ; wherefore they needs must make 
diligent research and find out who the man ever might be. They 
then took counsel and determined that one amongst them, who 
should be sagacious and deft of wit, must don the dress of some 
merchant from foreign parts ; then, repairing to the city he must 
go about from quarter to quarter and from street to street, and 
learn if any townsman had lately died and if so where he wont to 
dwell, that with this clue they might be enabled to find the wight 
they sought. Hereat said one of the robbers, " Grant me leave 
that I fare and find out such tidings in the town and bring thee 
word anon ; and if I fail of my purpose I hold my life in forfeit." 
Accordingly that bandit, after disguising himself by dress, pushed 
at night into the town and next morning early he repaired to the 
market-square and saw that none of the shops had yet been opened, 
save only that of Baba Mustafa the tailor, who thread and needle 
in hand sat upon his working-stool. The thief bade him good day 
and said, " 'Tis yet dark : how canst thou see to sew ? " Said the 
tailor, " I perceive thou art a stranger. Despite my years my 
eyesight is so keen that only yesterday I sewed together a dead 
body whilst sitting in a room quite darkened." Quoth the bandit 
thereupon to himself, " I shall get somewhat of my want from this 
snip ; )? and to secure a further clue he asked, " Meseemeth thou 
wouldst jest with me and thou meanest that a cerecloth for a 
corpse was stitched by thee and that thy business is to sew 
shrouds." Answered the tailor, "It mattereth not to thee : question 
me no more questions." Thereupon the cobber placed an Ashrafi 

Ali Baba and tk Forty TJuevu. 


in his hand and continued, " I desire not to discover aught thou 
hidest, albeit my breast like every honest man's is the grave of 
secrets ; and this only would I learn of thee, in what house didst 
thou do that job? Canst thou direct me thither, or thyself 
conduct me thereto?" The tailor took the gold with greed and 
cried, " I have not seen with my own eyes the way to that house. 
A certain bondswoman led me to a place which I know right well 
and there she bandaged my eyes and guided me to some tene- 
ment and lastly carried me into a darkened room where lay the dead 
body dismembered. Then she unbound the kerchief and bade me 
sew together first the corpse and then the shroud, which having 
done she again blindfolded me and led me back to the stead 
whence she had brought me and left me there. Thou seest then I 
am not able to tell thee where thou shalt find the house." Quoth 
the robber, " Albeit thou knowest not the dwelling whereof thou 
speakest, still canst thou take me to the place where thou wast 
blindfolded ; then I will bind a kerchief over thine eyes and lead 
thee as thou wast led : on this wise perchance thou mayest hit 
upon the site. An thou wilt do this favour by me, see here 
another golden ducat is thine." Thereupon the bandit slipped a 
second Ashrafi into the tailor's palm, and Baba Mustafa thrust it 
with the first into his pocket ; then, leaving his shop as it was, he 
walked to the place where Morgiana had tied the kerchief around 
his eyes, and with him went the robber who, after binding on the 
bandage, led him by the hand. Baba Mustafa, who was clever and 
keen-witted, presently striking the street whereby he had fared 
with the handmaid, walked on counting step by step ; then, halting 
suddenly, he said, "Thus far I came with her;" and the twain 
stopped in front of Kasim's house wherein now dwelt his brother 

Ali Baba. And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held 

her peace till 

384 Supplemental Nights. 

end of t&e S>fx f^tmtorefc an& 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
robber then made marks with white chalk upon the door to the 
end that he might readily find it at some future time, and 
removing the bandage from the tailor's eyes said, "O Baba 
Mustafa, I thank thee for this favour : and Almighty Allah 
guerdon thee for thy goodness. Tell me now, I pray thee, who 
dwelleth in yonder house ? " Quoth he, "In very sooth I wot not, 
for I have little knowledge concerning this quarter of the city ; " 
and the bandit, understanding that he could find no further clue 
from the tailor, dismissed him to his shop with abundant thanks, 
and hastened back to the tryst-place in the jungle where the band 
awaited his coming. Not long after it so fortuned that Morgiana, 
going out upon some errand, marvelled exceedingly at seeing 
the chalk-marks showing white in the door ; she stood awhile 
deep in thought and presently divined that some enemy had made 
the signs that he might recognize the house and play some sleight 
upon her lord. She therefore chalked the doors of all her 
neighbours in like manner and kept the matter secret, never 
entrusting it or to master or to mistress. Meanwhile the robber 
told his comrades his tale of adventure and how he had found 
the clue ; so the Captain and with him all the band went one 
after other by different ways till they entered the city ; and he 
who had placed the mark on All Baba's door accompanied the 
Chief to point out the place. He conducted him straightway 
to the house and shewing the sign exclaimed, " Here dwelleth 
he of whom we are in search ! *' But when the Captain looked 
around him he saw that all the dwellings bore chalk-marks after 
like fashion and he wondered saying, " By what manner of means 
knowest thou which house of all these houses that bear similar 
signs is that whereof thou spakest ? " Hereat the robber-guide 
was confounded beyond measure of confusion, and could make no 

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. 


answer ; then with an oath he cried, " I did assuredly set a sign 
upon a door, but I know not whence came all the marks upon 
the other entrances ; nor can I say for a surety which it was I 
chalked." Thereupon the Captain returned to the market-place 
and said to his men, " We have toiled and laboured in vain, nor 
have we found the house we went forth to seek. Return we now 
to the forest our rendezvous : I also will fare thither." Then all 
trooped off and assembled together within the treasure-cave ; and, 
when the robbers had all met, the Captain judged him worthy 
of punishment who had spoken falsely and had led them through 
the city to no purpose. So he imprisoned him in presence of 
them all ; l and then said he, " To him amongst you will I show 
special favour who shall go to town and bring me intelligence 
whereby we may lay hands upon the plunderer of our property." 
Hereat another of the company came forward and said, " I am 
ready to go and enquire into the case, and 'tis I who will bring 
thee to thy wish." The Captain after giving him presents and 
promises despatched him upon his errand ; and by the decree 
of Destiny which none may gainsay, this second robber went 
first to the house of Baba Mustafa the tailor, as had done the 
thief who had foregone him. In like manner he also persuaded 
the snip with gifts of golden coin that he be led hoodwinked 
and thus too he was guided to AH Baba's door. Here noting 
the work of his predecessor, he affixed to the jamb a mark with 
red chalk the better to distinguish it from the others whereon 
still showed the white. Then hied he back in stealth to his 
company; but Morgiana on her part also descried the red 
sign on the entrance and with subtle forethought marked all 
the others after the same fashion ; nor told she any what she 
had done. Meanwhile the bandit rejoined his band and vauntingly 

1 Galland is less merciful, *' Aussitdtle conductor fut dtclart dig** di mcrt lout fnm 
trove, et U /> condamna lui-mfme," etc. The criminal, indeed, condemns himself and 
firmly offers his neck to be stricken. 

386 Supplemental Nights. 

$aid, " O our Captain, I have found the house and thereon put a 
mark whereby I shall distinguish it clearly from all its neighbours." 
- And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

of. tfre 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
Captain despatched another of his men to the city and he found 
the place, but, as aforetime, when the troop repaired thither they 
saw each and every house marked with signs of red chalk. So 
they returned disappointed and the Captain, waxing displeased 
exceedingly and distraught, clapped also this spy into gaol. 
Then said the chief to himself, "Two men have failed in their 
endeavour and have met their rightful meed of punishment ; and 
I trow that none other of my band will essay to follow up their 
research ; so I myself will go and find the house of this wight." 
Accordingly he fared along and aided by the tailor Baba Mustafa, 
who had gained much gain of golden pieces in this matter, he 
hit upon the house of AH Baba ; and here he made no outward 
show or sign, but marked it on the tablet 1 of his heart and 
impressed the picture upon the page of his memory. Then 
returning to the jungle he said to his men, "I have full cog- 
m'zance of the place and have limned it clearly in my mind ; so 
now there will be no difficulty in finding it. Go forth straight- 
ways and buy me and bring hither nineteen mules together with 
one large leathern jar of mustard oil and seven and thirty vessels 
of the same kind clean empty. Without me and the two locked 
up in gaol ye number thirty-seven souls ; so I will stow you 
away armed and accoutred each within his jar and will load 
two upon each mule, and upon the nineteenth mule there shall 
be a man in an empty jar on one side, and on the other the 
jar full of oil. I for my part, in guise of an oil-merchant, will 

1 In the text ' Lauh," for which see vol. v. 73. 

Ati Baba and thi Forty Thuves. 387 

drive the mules into the town, arriving at the house by night, 
and will ask permission of its master to tarry there until morning. 
After this we shall seek occasion during the dark hours to rise 
up and fall upon him and slay him." Furthermore the Captain 
spake saying, "When we have made an end of him we shall 
recover the gold and treasure whereof he robbed us and bring it 
back upon the mules." This counsel pleased the robbers who 
went forthwith and purchased mules and huge leathern jars, and 
did as the Captain had bidden them. And after a delay of 
three days shortly before nightfall they arose ; and over-smearing 
all the jars with oil of mustard, each hid him inside an empty 
vessel. The Chief then disguised himself in trader's gear and 
placed the jars upon the nineteen mules ; to wit, the thirty-seven 
vessels in each of which lay a robber armed and accoutred, and 
the one that was full of oil. This done, he drove the beasts 
before him and presently he reached All Baba's place at night- 
fall; when it chanced that the house-master was strolling after 
supper to and fro in front of his home. The Captain saluted 
him with the salam and said, " I come from such and such a 
village with oil ; and ofttimes have I been here a-selling oil, but 
now to my grief I have arrived too late and I am sore troubled 
and perplexed as to where I shall spend the night. An thou 
have pity on me I pray thee grant that I tarry here in thy court- 
yard and ease the mules by taking down the jars and giving the 
beasts somewhat of fodder." Albeit Ali Baba had heard the 
Captain's voice when perched upon the tree and had seen him 
enter the cave, yet by reason of the disguise he knew him not 
for the leader of the thieves, and granted his request with hearty 
welcome and gave him full license to halt there for the night 
He then pointed out an empty shed wherein to tether the mules, 
and bade one of the slave-boys go fetch grain and water. He 
also gave orders to the slave-girl Morgiana saying, "A guest 
hath come hither and tarrieth here to-night. Do thou busy 

3 $8 Supplemental Nigkls. 

thyself with all speed about his supper and make ready the guest- 
bed for him." Presently, when the Captain had let down all the 
jars and had fed and watered his mules, AH Baba received him 
with all courtesy and kindness, and summoning Morgiana said in 
his presence, " See thou fail not in service of this our stranger 
nor suffer him to lack for aught. To-morrow early I would fare 
to the Hammam and bathe ; so do thou give my slave-boy Abdullah 
a suit of clean white clothes which I may put on after washing ; 
moreover make thee ready a somewhat of broth overnight that 
I may drink it after my return home." Replied she, I will 
have all in readiness as thou hast bidden." So AH Baba retired 
to his rest, and the Captain, having supped, repaired to the shed 
and saw that all the mules had their food and drink for the 

n jght. And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her 

peace till 

W)t enfc of fte Sbtx $^untfteb anfc <Ijtttp--t!jtc& Ntgf)t, 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the Cap- 
tain, after seeing to the mules and the jars which AH Baba and his 
household held to be full of oil, finding utter privacy, whispered to his 
men who were in ambush, " This night at midnight when ye hear 
my voice, do you quickly open with your sharp knives the leathern 
jars from top to bottom and issue forth without delay." Then 
passing through the kitchen he reached the chamber wherein a bed 
had been dispread for him, Morgiana showing the way with a 
lamp. Quoth she, " An thou need aught beside I pray thee com- 
mand this thy slave who is ever ready to obey thy say ! " He 
made answer, " Naught else need I ; " then, putting out the light, 
he lay him down on the bed to sleep awhile ere the time came to 
rouse his men and finish off the work. Meanwhile Morgiana did 
as her master had bidden her : she first took out a suit of clean 
white clothes and made it over to Abdullah who had not yet goe 

Ali Baba and thi Forty Thieves. 389 

to rest ; then she placed the pipkin upon the hearth to boil the 
broth and blew the fire till it burnt briskly. After a short delay 
she needs must see an the broth be boiling, but by that time all 
the lamps had gone out and she found that the oil was spent and 
that nowhere could she get a light. The slave-boy Abdullah 
observed that she was troubled and perplexed hereat, and quoth 
he to her, " Why make so much ado ? In yonder shed are many 
jars of oil: go now and take as much soever as thou listest." 
Morgiana gave thanks to him for his suggestion ; and Abdullah, 
who was lying at his ease in the hall, went off to sleep so that he 
might wake betimes and serve Ali Baba in the bath. So the hand- 
maiden rose ! and with oil-can in hand walked to the shed where 
stood the leathern jars all ranged in rows. Now, as she drew nigh 
unto one of the vessels, the thief who was hidden therein hearing 
the tread of footsteps bethought him that it was of his Captain 
whose summons he awaited ; so he whispered, " Is it now time for 
us to sally forth ? " Morgiana started back affrighted at the sound 
of human accents ; but, inasmuch as she was bold and ready of 
wit, she replied, " The time is not yet come," and said to herself, 
" These jars are not full of oil and herein I perceive a manner of 
mystery. Haply the oil merchant hatcheth some treacherous plot 
against my lord ; so Allah, the Compassionating, the Compassion- 
ate, protect us from his snares ! " Wherefore she answered in a 
voice made like to the Captain's, " Not yet, the time is not 
come." Then she went to the next jar and returned the same 
reply to him who was within, and so on to all the vessels one by 
one. Then said she in herself, " Laud to the Lord ! my master 
took this fellow in believing him to be an oil-merchant, but lo, he 
hath admitted a band of robbers, who only await the signal to fall 

1 In Arab. 'Kima"=he rose, which, in vulgar speech especially in Egypt, = he 
began. So in Spitta-Bey's "Comes Arabes Mod ernes " (p. 124) " Kimat al-Sibhah 
dhikat fl yad akhi-h " = the chaplet began (lit. arose) to wax tight in his brother's 
This sense is shadowed forth in classical Arabic. 

39O Supplemental Nights. 

upon him and plunder the place and do him die." Then passed 
she on to the furthest jar and finding it brimming with oil, filled 
her can, and returning to the kitchen, trimmed the lamp and lit 
the wicks ; then, bringing forth a large cauldron, she set it upon 
the fire, and filling it with oil from out the jar heaped wood upon 
the hearth and fanned it to a fierce flame the readier to boil its 
contents. When this was done she baled it out in potfuls and 
poured it seething hot into the leathern vessels one by one while 
the thieves unable to escape were scalded to death and every jar 
contained a corpse. 1 Thus did this slave-girl by her subtle wit 
make a clean end of all noiselessly and unknown even to the 
dwellers in the house. Now when she had satisfied herself that 
each and every of the men had been slain, she went back to the 
kitchen and shutting to the door sat brewing AH Baba's broth. 
Scarce had an hour passed before the Captain woke from sleep ; 
and, opening wide his window, saw that all was dark and silent ; 
so he clapped his hands as a signal for his men to come forth but 
not a sound was heard in return. After awhile he clapped again 
and called aloud but got no answer ; and when he cried out a third 
time without reply he was perplexed and went out to the shed 
wherein stood the jars. He thought to himself, " Perchance all 
are fallen asleep whenas the time for action is now at hand, so 
I must e'en awaken them without stay or delay." Then approach- 
ing the nearest jar he was startled by a smell of oil and seething 
flesh ; and touching it outside he felt it reeking hot ; then going 
to the others one by one, he found all in like condition. Hereat 
he knew for a surety the fate which had betided his band and, 
fearing for his own safety, he clomb on to the wall, and thence 
dropping into a garden made his escape in high dudgeon and sore 

1 So in old Arabian history " Kasir " (the Little One), the Arab Zopyrus, stows away 
in huge camel-bags the 2,000 warriors intended to surprise masterful Queen Zebba. 
Chronique de Tabari, vol. ii. 26. Also the armed men in boxes by which Shamar, 
King of Al-Yaman, took Shamar-kand = Shamar's-town, now Samarkand. (Ibid. 

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. 391 

disappointment Morgiana awaited awhile to see the Captain 
return from the shed but he came not ; whereat she knew tfiat he 
had scaled the wall and had taken to flight, for that the street-door 
Was double-locked ; and the thieves being all disposed of on this 
wise Morgiana laid her down to sleep in perfect solace and ease 
of mind. When two hours of darkness yet remained, Ali Baba 
awoke and went to the Hammam knowing naught of the night- 
adventure, for the gallant slave-girl had not aroused him, nor 
indeed had she deemed such action expedient, because had she 
sought an opportunity of reporting to him her plan, she might 
haply have lost her chance and spoiled the project. The sun was 
high over the horizon when Ali Baba walked back from the Baths ; 
and he marvelled exceedingly to see the jars still standing under 
the shed and said, " How cometh it that he, the oil-merchant my 
guest, hath not carried to the market his mules and jars of 
oil?" - And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her 
peace till 

tnfc of tfie Sfctx f^unfcrett anfc ^Tljirtg.fourtf) 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Ali 
Baba presently asked Morgiana what had befallen the oil-merchant 
his guest whom he had placed under her charge ; and she answered, 
"Allah Almighty vouchsafe to thee six score years and ten of 
safety ! I will tell thee in privacy of this merchant." So Ali 
Baba went apart with his slave-girl, who taking him without the 
house first locked the court-door ; then showing him a jar she said, 
" Prithee look into this and see if within there be oil or aught else." 
Thereupon peering inside it he perceived a man at which sight he 
cried- aloud and fain would have fled in his fright. Quoth Morgiana, 
" Fear him not, this man hath no longer the force to work thee 
harm, he lieth dead and stone-dead." Hearing such words of 
comfort and reassurance Alt Baba asked, " O Morgiana, what evils 
have we escaped and by what means hath this wretch become the 

392 Supplemental Nights. 

quarry of Fate ? " She answered " Alhamdolillah Praise be to 
Almighty Allah \ I will inform thee fully of the case ; but hush 
thee, speak not aloud, lest haply the neighbours learn the secret 
and it end in our confusion. Look now into all the jars, one 
by one from first to last." So AH Baba .examined them sever- 
ally and found in each a man fully armed and accoutred and all 
lay scalded to death. Hereat speechless for sheer amazement 
he stared at the jars, but presently recovering himself he asked, 
" And where is he, the oil-merchant ? " Answered she, " Of him 
also I will inform thee. The villain was no trader but a traitorous 
assassin whose honied words would have ensnared thee to thy 
doom; and now I will tell thee what he was and what hath 
happened ; but, meanwhile thou art fresh from the Hammam and 
thou shouldst first drink somewhat of this broth for thy stomach's 
and thy health's sake." So AH Baba went within and Morgiana 
served up the mess ; after which quoth her master, " I fain would 
hear this wondrous story : prithee tell it to me and set my heart at 
ease." Hereat the handmaid fell to relating whatso had betided 
in these words, " O my master, when thou badest me boil the 
broth and retiredst to rest, thy slave in obedience to thy command 
took out a suit of clean white clothes and gave it to the boy 
Abdullah; then kindled the fire and set on the broth. As soon as 
it was ready I had need to light a lamp so that I might see to 
skim it, but all the oil was spent, and, learning this I told my want 
to the slave-boy Abdullah, who advised me to draw somewhat 
from the jars which stood under the shed. Accordingly, I took a 
can and went to the first vessel when suddenly I heard a voice 
within whisper with all caution, ' Is it now time for us to sally 
forth ? ' I was amazed thereat and judged that the pretended 
merchant had laid some plot to slay thee \ so I replied, * The time 
is not yet come.' Then I went to the second jar and heard another 
voice to which I made the like answer, and so on with all of them. 
I now was certified that these men awaited only some signal from 

Alt Baba and the Forty Thieves. 393 

their Chief whom thou didst take to guest within thy walls sup- 
posing him to be a merchant in oil ; and that after thou receivedst 
him hospitably the miscreant had brought these men to murther 
thee and to plunder thy good and spoil thy house. But I gave 
him no opportunity to win his wish. The last jar I found full of 
oil and taking somewhat therefrom I lit the lamp ; then, putting a 
large cauldron upon the fire, I filled it up with oil which I brought 
from the jar and made a fierce blaze under it ; and, when the con- 
tents were seething hot, I took out sundry cansful with intent to 
scald them all to death, and going to each jar in due order, I 
poured within them one by one boiling oil. On this wise having 
destroyed them utterly, I returned to the kitchen and having 
extinguished the lamps stood by the window watching what might 
happen, and how that false merchant would act next. Not long 
after I had taken my station, the robber-captain awoke and oft- 
times signalled to his thieves. Then getting no reply he came 
downstairs and went out to the jars, and finding that all his men 
were slain he fled through the darkness I know not whither. So 
when he had clean disappeared I was assured that, the door 
being double-locked, he had scaled the wall and dropped into the 
garden and made his escape. Then with my heart at rest I slept." 
And Morgiana, after telling her story to her master, presently added, 
41 This is the whole truth I have related to thee. For some days 
indeed have I had inkling of such matter, but withheld it from 
thee deeming it inexpedient to risk the chance of its meeting the 
neighbours' ears ; now, however, there is no help but to tell thee 
thereof. One day as I came to the house-door I espied thereon a 
white chalk-mark, and on the next day a red sign beside the white. 
I knew not the intent wherewith the marks were made, never- 
theless I set others upon the entrances of sundry neighbours, 
judging that some enemy had done this deed whereby to encompass 
my master's destruction. Therefore I made the marks on all the 
other doors in such perfect conformity with those I found, that it 

394 Supplemental 

would be hard to distinguish amongst them." And as the morii 

began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

Ww enfc of t&e ft>fx 3^untrre& anto ^fiirtg^ftft Jlfgftt. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Morgiana 

continued to Ali Baba : "Judge now and see if these signs and 
all this villainy be not the work of the bandits of the forest, 
who marked our house that on such wise they might know it 
again. Of these forty thieves there yet remain two others con- 
cerning whose case I Know naught ; so beware of them, but 
chiefly of the third remaining robber, their Captain, who fled hence 
alive. Take good heed and be thou cautious of him, for, shouldst 
thou fall into his hands, he will in no wise spare thee but will 
surely murther thee. I will do all that lieth in me to save 
from hurt and harm thy life and property, nor shall thy slave be 
found wanting in any service to my lord." Hearing these words 
Ali Baba rejoiced with exceeding joyance and said to her, " I 
am well pleased with thee for this thy conduct ; and say me 
what wouldst thou have me do in thy behalf; I shall not fail 
to remember thy brave deed so long as breath in me remaineth." 
Quoth she, " It behoveth us before all things forthright to bury 
these bodies in the ground, that so the secret be not known to 
any one." Hereupon Ali Baba took with him his slave-boy 
Abdullah into the garden and there under a tree they dug for 
the corpses of the thieves a deep pit in size proportionate to its 
contents, and they dragged the bodies (having carried off their 
weapons) to the fosse and threw them in ; then, covering up 
the remains of the seven and thirty robbers they made the 
ground appear level and clean as it wont to be. They also hid the 
leathern jars and the gear and arms and presently Ali Baba sent 
the mules by ones and twos to the bazar and sold them all 
with the able aid of his slave-boy Abdullah. Thus the matter 

AH Baba and the Forty Thiives. 395 

was hushed up nor did it reach the ears of any ; however, AH 
Baba ceased not to be ill at ease lest haply the Captain or the 
surviving two robbers should wreak their vengeance on his head. 
He kept himself private with all caution and took heed that 
none learn a word of what had happened and of the wealth 
which he had carried off from the bandits' cave. Meanwhile the 
Captain of the thieves having escaped with his life, fled to the 
forest in hot wrath and sore irk of mind ; and his senses were 
scattered and the colour of his visage vanished like ascending 
smoke. Then he thought the matter over again and again, and 
at last he firmly resolved that he needs must take the life of AH 
Baba, else he would lose all the treasure which his enemy, by 
knowledge of the magical words, would take away and turn to 
his own use. Furthermore, he determined that he would under- 
take the business single-handed ; and, that after getting rid of 
AH Baba, he would gather together another band of banditti 
and would pursue his career of brigandage, as indeed his forbears 
had done for many generations. So he lay down to rest that 
night, and rising early in the morning donned a dress of suitable 
appearance ; then going to the city alighted at a caravanserai, 
thinking to himself, " Doubtless the murther of so many men hath 
reached the Wall's ears, and AH Baba hath been seized and 
brought to justice, and his house is levelled and his good is con- 
fiscated. The townfolk must surely have heard tidings of these 
matters." So he straightway asked of the keeper of the khan, 
" What strange things have happened in the city during the last 
few days ? " and the other told him all that he had seen and heard, 
but the Captain could not learn a whit of that which most con- 
cerned him. Hereby he understood that AH Baba was ware and 
wise, and that he had not only carried away such store of treasure 
but he had also destroyed so many lives and withal had come off 
scatheless ; furthermore, that he himself must needs have all his 

wits alert not to fall into the hands of his foe and perish. With 
VOL. in. D D 

396 Supplemental Nights. 

this resolve the Captain hired a shop in the Bazar, whither he 
bore whole bales of the finest stuffs and goodly merchandise from 
his forest treasure-house ; and presently he took his seat within 
the store and fell to doing merchant's business. By chance his place 
fronted the booth of the defunct Kasim where his son, AH Baba's 
nephew, now traded ; and the Captain, who called himself Khwajah 
Hasan, soon formed acquaintance and friendship with the shop- 
keepers around about him and treated all with profuse civilities, 
but he was especially gracious and cordial to the son of Kasim, 
a handsome youth and a well-dressed, and ofttimes he would 
sit and chat with him for a long while. A few days after it 
chanced that AH Baba, as he was sometime wont to do, came 
to see his nephew, whom he found sitting in his shop. The Captain 
saw and recognised him at sight and one morning he asked 
the young man, saying, " Prithee tell me, who is he that ever and 
anon cometh to thee at thy place of sale ? " whereto the youth made 
answer, " He is my uncle, the brother of my father." Whereupon the 
Captain showed him yet greater favour and affection the better to 
deceive him for his own devices, and gave him presents and made 
him sit at meat with him and fed him with the daintiest of dishes. 
Presently AH Baba's nephew bethought him it was only right and 
proper that he also should invite the merchant to supper, but 
whereas his own house was small, and he was straitened for room 
and could not make a -show of splendour, as did Khwajah 

Hasan, he took counsel with his uncle on the matter. And 

as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

2F!)e end of tfj* gbtx ?^un&rrtK antt ^jurtjHtxi!) N t'g&t. 

THEN said she: 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that All 

Baba replied to his nephew : " Thou sayest well : it behoveth thee 
to entreat thy friend in fairest fashion even as he hath entreated 
thee. On the morrow, which is Friday, shut thy shop as do all 

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. 397 

merchants of repute ^ then, after the early meal, take Khwajah 
Hasan to smell the air, 1 and as thou walkest lead him hither 
unawares ; meanwhile I will give orders that Morgiana shall make 
ready for his coming the best of viands and all necessaries for a 
feast. Trouble not thyself on any wise, but leave the matter 
in my hands." Accordingly on the next day, to wit, Friday, 
the nephew of Ali Baba took Khwajah Hasan to walk about the 
garden ; and, as they were returning he led him by the street 
wherein his uncle dwelt. When they came to the house, the 
youth stopped at the door and knocking said, " O my lord, this 
is my second home : my uncle hath heard much of thee and of 
thy goodness mewards and desircth with exceeding desire to 
see thee ; so, shouldst thou consent to enter and visit him, I shall 
be truly glad and thankful to thee. Albeit Khwajah Hasan 
rejoiced in heart that he had thus found means whereby he might 
have access to his enemy's house and household, and although he 
hoped soon to attain his end by treachery, yet he hesitated to 
enter in and stood to make his excuses and walk away. But 
when the door was opened by the slave-porter, Ali Baba's nephew 
seized his companion's hand and after abundant persuasion led 
him in, whereat he entered with great show of cheerfulness as 
though much pleased and honoured. The housemaster received 
him with all favour and worship and asked him of his welfare, and 
said to him, " O my lord, I am obliged and thankful to thee for 
that thou hast shewn favour to the son of my brother and I perceive 
that thou regardest him with an affection even fonder than my own." 
Khwajah Hasan replied with pleasant words and said, "Thy 
nephew vastly taketh my fancy and in him I am well pleased, 
for that although young in years yet he hath been endued by Allah 
with much of wisdom." Thus they twain conversed with friendly 

1 i./. for a walk, a " constitutional " : the phrase U very common in Egypt, and has 
occurred before. 

398 Supplemental Nights. 

conversation and presently the guest rose to depart and said, " O 
my lord, thy slave must now farewell thee ; but on some future 
day Inshallah he will again wait upon thee." AH Baba, how- 
ever, would not let him leave and asked, "Whither wendest thou, 

my friend ? I would invite thee to my table and I pray thee 
sit at meat with us and after hie thee home in peace. Perchance 
the dishes are not as delicate as those -whereof thou art wont 
to eat, still deign grant me this request I pray thee and refresh 
thyself with my victual. " Quoth Khwajah Hasan, " O my lord 

1 am beholden to thee for thy gracious invitation, and with 
pleasure would I sit at meat with thee, but for a special reason 
must I needs excuse myself ; suffer me therefore to depart for I 
may not tarry longer nor accept thy gracious offer." Hereto the 
host made reply, " I pray thee, O my lord, tell me what may be 
the reason so urgent and weighty ? " And Khwajah Hasan 
answered, " The cause is this : I must not, by order of the physician, 
who cured me lately of my complaint, eat aught of food prepared 
with salt." Quoth Ali Baba, " An this be all, deprive me not, 
I pray thee, of the honour thy company will confer upon me : as 
the meats are not yet cooked, I will forbid the kitchener to make 
use of any salt. Tarry here awhile and I will return anon to 
thee." So saying Ali Baba went in to Morgiana and bade her not 
put salt into any one of the dishes ; and she, while busied with 
her cooking, fell to marvelling greatly at such order and asked 
her master, " Who is he that eateth meat wherein is no salt ? " 
He answered, " What to thee mattereth it who he may be ? only 
do thou my bidding." She rejoined, " Tis well : all shall be as 
thou wishest ; " but in mind she wondered at the man who made 
such strange request and desired much to look upon him. 
Wherefore,, when all the meats were ready for serving up, she 
helped the slave-boy Abdullah to spread the table and set on 
the meal ; and no sooner did she see Khwajah Hasan than she 
knew who he was, albeit he had disguised himself in the dress 

All Baba and the Forty Thieves. 399 

of a stranger merchant; furthermore, when she eyed him atten- 
tively she espied a dagger hidden under his robe. "So ho!" 
quoth she to herself, " this is the cause why the villain eateth 
not of salt, for that he seeketh an opportunity to slay my master 
whose mortal enemy he is ; howbeit I will be beforehand with 
him and despatch him ere he find a chance to harm my lord/' 

And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace 


tlfce tn* of fye Sfcix ^unbred anto ftbirtg.stbentb 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that 

Morgiana, having spread a white cloth upon the table and served 
up the meal, went back to the kitchen and thought out her plot 
against the robber-Captain. Now when AH Baba and Khwajah 
Hasan had eaten their sufficiency, the slave-boy Abdullah brought 
Morgiana word to serve the dessert, and she cleared the table and 
set on fruit fresh and dried in salvers, then she placed by the side 
of AH Baba a small tripod for three cups with a flagon of wine, and 
lastly she went off with the slave-boy Abdullah into another room, 
as though she would herself eat supper. Then Khwajah Hasan, that 
is, the Captain of the robbers, perceiving that the coast "was 
clear, exulted mightily saying to himself, " The time hath come 
for me to take full vengeance ; with one thrust of my dagger I will 
despatch this fellow, then escape across the garden and wend my 
ways. His nephew will not adventure to stay my hand, for an he 
do but move a finger or toe with that intent another stab will settle 
his earthly account. Still must I wait awhile until the slave-boy 
and the cook-maid shall have eaten and lain down to rest them in 
the kitchen." Morgiana, however, watched htm wistfully and 
divining his purpose said in her mind, " I must not allow this villain 
advantage over my lord, but by some means I must make void his 
project and at once put an end to the life of him.' 9 Accordingly, 

Supplemental Nights. 

the trusty slave-girl changed her dress with all haste and donned 
such clothes as dancers wear ; she veiled her face with a costly 
kerchief; around her head she bound a fine turband, and about her 
middle she tied a waist-cloth worked with gold and silver wherein 
she stuck a dagger, whose hilt was rich in filigree and jewelry. Thus 
disguised she said to the slave-boy Abdullah, " Take now thy 
tambourine that we may play and sing and dance in honour of our 
master's guest." So he did her bidding and the twain went into 
the room, the lad playing and the lass following. Then, making a 
low congde, they asked leave to perform and disport and play ; and 
AH Baba gave permission, saying, " Dance now and do your best 
that this our guest may be mirthful and merry." Quoth Khwajah 
Hasan, " O my lord, thou dost indeed provide much pleasant enter- 
tainment." Then the slave-boy Abdullah standing by began to strike 
the tambourine whilst Morgiana rose up and showed her perfect 
art and pleased them vastly with graceful steps and sportive motion ; 
and suddenly drawing the poniard from her belt she brandished 
it and paced from side to side, a spectacle which pleased them 
most of all. At times also she stood before them, now clapping 
the sharp-edged dagger under her armpit and then setting it 
against her breast. Lastly she took the tambourine from the 
slave-boy Abdullah, and still holding the poniard in her right she 
went round for largesse as is the custom amongst merry-makers. 
First she stood before Ali Baba who threw a gold coin into the tam- 
bourine, and his nephew likewise put in an Ashrafi ; then Khwajah 
Hasan, seeing her about to approach him, fell to pulling out his 
purse, when she heartened her heart and quick as the blinding 
leven she plunged the dagger into his vitals, and forthwith the 
miscreant fell back stone-dead. Ali Baba was dismayed and cried 
in his wrath, " O unhappy, what is this deed thou hast done to 
bring about my ruin ! " But she replied, " Nay, O my lord, 
rather to save thee and not to cause thee harm have I slain this 
man : loosen his garments and see what thou wilt discover there* 

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. 401 

under." So Ali Baba searched the dead man's dress and found 
concealed therein a dagger. Then said Morgiana, " This wretch 
was thy deadly enemy. Consider him well : he is none other 
than the oil merchant, the Captain of the band of robbers. 
Whenas he came hither with intent to take thy life, he would not 
eat thy salt ; and when thou toldest me that he wished not any in 
the meat I suspected him and at first sight I was assured that he 
would surely do thee die ; Almighty Allah be praised 'tis even as 
I thought." Then Ali Babi lavished upon her thanks and expres- 
sions of gratitude, saying, " Lo, these two times hast thou saved 
me from his hand/' and falling upon her neck he cried, " See thou 
art free, and as reward for this thy fealty I have wedded thee to 
my nephew." Then turning to the youth he said, " Do as I bid thee 
and thou shalt prosper. I would that thou marry Morgiana, who 
is a model of duty and loyalty : thou seest now yon Khwajah 
Hasan sought thy friendship only that he might find opportunity 
to take my life, but this maiden with her good sense and her 

wisdom hath slain him and saved us." And as the morn began 

to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

ft en* of tfce (x )QuntaH an* STfrntp-eigfitf) Nfgfit. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Ali 

Baba's nephew straightway consented to marry Morgiana. After 
which the three, raising the dead body bore it forth with all heed 
and vigilance and privily buried it in the garden, and for many 
years no one knew aught thereof. In due time Ali Baba married his 
brother's son to Morgiana with great pomp, and spread a bride-feast 
in most sumptuous fashion for his friends and neighbours, and made 
merry with them and enjoyed singing and all manner of dancing 
and amusements. He prospered in every undertaking and Time 
smiled upon him and a new source of wealth was opened to him. For 
fear of the thieves he had not once visited the jungle-cave wherein 

4O2 Supplemental Nights. 

lay the treasure, since the day he had carried forth the corpse of 
his brother Kasim. But some time after, he mounted his hackney 
one morning and journeyed thither, with all care and caution, till 
finding no signs of man or horse, and reassured in his mind he 
ventured to draw near the door, Then alighting from his beast he 
tied it up to a tree, and going to the entrance pronounced the 
words which he had not forgotten, " Open, O Simsim ! " Hereat, 
as was its wont, the door flew open, and entering thereby he saw 
the goods and hoard of gold and silver untouched and lying as he 
had left them. So he felt assured that not one of all the thieves 
remained alive, and, that save himself there was not a soul who 
knew the secret of the place. At once he bound in his saddle- 
cloth a load of Ashrafis such as his horse could bear and brought it 
home ; and in after days he showed the hoard to his sons and sons* 
sons and taught them how the door could be caused to open and 
shut. Thus Ali Baba and his household lived all their lives in wealth 
and joyance in that city where erst he had been a pauper, and by 
the blessing of that secret treasure he rose to high degree and 

dignities. And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held 

her peace ttfl 


of tbe Six |t}unUrcU anU Cftutp-nintf) Xigf)t. 

THEN by the command of King Shahryar Queen Shahrazad began 
to tell in these words the story of 


Under the reign of the Caliph Harun al-Rashid there dwelt in 
the city of Baghdad a certain merchant, 'AH Khwajah night, 
who had a small stock of goods wherewith he bought and sold 
and made a bare livelihood, abiding alone and without a family 
in the bouse of his forbears. Now so it came to pass that 
each night for three nights together he saw in vision a venerable 
Shaykh who bespake him thus, " Thou art beholden to make 
a pilgrimage to Meccah ; why abidest thou sunk in heedless 
slumber and farest not forth as it behoveth thee ?"* Hearing 
these words he became sore startled and affrighted, so that he sold 
shop and goods and all that he had ; and, with firm intent to visit 
the Holy House of Almighty Allah, he let his home on hire and 
joined a caravan that was journeying to Meccah the Magnified. 
But ere he left his natal city he placed a thousand gold pieces, 
which were over and above his need for the journey, within 
an earthen jar filled up with AsaTfrf 2 or Sparrow olives ; and, 
having made fast the mouth thereof, he carried the jar to a 
merchant-friend of many years standing and said, " Belike, O 

1 These visions are frequent in Al- Islam ; see Pilgrimage iii. 254*55. Of course 
Christians are not subject to them, as Moslems also are never favoured with glimpses of 
the Blessed Virgin and the Saints; the best proof of their "Subjectivity." 

1 For this word see De Sacy, Quest, ii. 421. It has already occurred in The Nights, 
vol. iii. 295. 

406 Supplemental Nights. 

my brother, tnou hast heard tell that I purpose going with a 
caravan on pilgrimage to Meccah, the Holy City ; so I have 
brought a jar of olives the which, I pray thee, preserve for me 
in trust against my return." The merchant at once arose and 
handing the key of his warehouse to AH Khwajah said, " Here, 
take the key and open the store and therein place the jar anywhere 
thou choosest, and when thou shalt come back thou wilt find it 
even as thou leftest it." Hereupon Ali Khwajah did his friend's 
bidding and locking up the door returned the key to its master. 
Then loading his travelling goods upon a dromedary and mounting 
a second beast he fared forth with the caravan. They came at length 
to Meccah the Magnified, and it was the month Zu al-Hijjah 
wherein myriads of Moslems hie thither on pilgrimage and pray 
and prostrate before the Ka'abah-temple. And when he had 
circuited the Holy House and fulfilled all the rites and cere- 
monies required of palmers, he set up a shop for sale of mer- 
chandise. 1 By chance two merchants passing along that street 
espied the fine stuffs and goods in Ali Khwajah's booth and 
approved much of them and praised their beauty and excellence. 
Presently quoth one to other, "This man bringeth here most 
rare and costly goods : now in Cairo, the capital of Egypt-land 
would he get full value for them, and , far more than in the 
markets of this city." Hearing mention of Cairo, Ali Khwajah 
conceived a sore longing to visit that famous capital, so he gave 
up his intent of return Baghdad-wards and purposed wayfaring 
to Egypt. Accordingly he joined a caravan and arriving thither 
was well-pleased with the place, both country and city; and 
selling his merchandise he made great gain therefrom. Then 
buying other goods and stuffs he purposed to make Damascus ; 
but for one full month he tarried at Cairo and visited her sanc- 

1 Not a few pilgrims settle for a time or for life in the two Holy Places, which ar 
thus kept supplied with fresh blood. See Pilgrimage ii. 260. 

Aii Kkwajah and tfu Merchant of Baghdad. 407 

tuaries and saintly places and after leaving her walls he solaced 
himself with seeing many famous cities distant several days' 
journey from the capital along the banks of the River Nilus. 
Presently, bidding adieu to Egypt he arrived at the Sanctified 
House, 1 Jerusalem and prayed in the Temple of the Banu Isra'fl 
which. the Moslems had re-edified. In due time he reached Damas- 
cus and observed that the city was well builded and much peopled, 
and that the fields and meads were well-watered with springs 
and channels and that the gardens and vergiers were laden with 
flowers and fruits. Amid such delights Ali Khwajah hardly 
thought of Baghdad ; withal he ceased not to pursue his journey 
through Aleppo, Mosul and Shirdz, tarrying some time at all of 
these towns, especially at Shiriz, till at length after seven years 

of wayfaring he came back to Baghdad. And as the morn 

began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

STIje en* of tjr &>i.x #}unfcrc& an* Jforiittj) Nig&t. 

THEN said she : It behoveth thee now, O auspicious King, to 

hear of the Baghdad merchant and his lack of probity. For seven 
long years he never once thought of Ali Khwajah or of the trust 
committed to his charge ; till one day as his wife sat at meat with 
him at the evening meal, their talk by chance was of olives. Quoth 
she to him, " I would now fain have some that I may eat of them ;" 
and quoth he, " As thou speakest thereof I bethink me of that 
Ali Khwajah who seven years ago fared on a pilgrimage to 
Meccah, and ere he went left in trust with me a jar of Sparrow- 
olives which still cumbereth the store-house. Who knoweth where 
he is or what hath betided him ? A man who lately returned with 
the Hajj-caravan brought me word that Ali Khwajah had quitted 
Meccah the Magnified with intent to journey on to Egypt. Allah 

1 it. Bayt al-Mukaddas, for which see vol. it 132. 

4o8 Supplemental Nights. 

Almighty alone knoweth an he be still alive or he be now dead ; 
however, if his olives be in good condition I will go bring some 
hither that we may taste them : so give me a platter and a lamp 
that I may fetch thee somewhat of them." His wife, an honest 
woman and an upright, made answer, " Allah forbid that thou 
shouldst do a deed so base and break thy word and cove- 
nant. Who can tell ? Thou art not assured by any of his death ; 
perchance he may come back from Egypt safe and sound to- 
morrow or the day after ; then wilt thou, an thou cannot deliver 
unharmed to him what he hath left in pledge, be ashamed of this 
thy broken troth and we shall be disgraced before man and 
dishonoured in the presence of thy friend. I will not for my 
part have any hand in such meanness nor will I taste the olives ; 
furthermore, it standeth not to reason that after seven years' 
keeping they should be fit to eat. I do implore thee to forswear 
this ill purpose." On such wise the merchant's wife protested 
and prayed her husband that he meddle not with AH Khwajah's 
f olives, and shamed him of his intent so that for the nonce 
he cast the matter from his mind. However, although the trader 
refrained that evening from taking Ali Khwajah's olives, yet he 
kept the design in memory until one day when, of his obstinacy 
and unfaith, he resolved to carry out his project ; and rising 
up walked towards the store-room dish in hand. By chance he 
met his wife who said, " I am no partner with thee in this ill- 
action : in very truth some evil shall befal thee an thou do such 
deed." He heard her but heeded her not; and, going to the 
store-room opened the jar and found the olives spoiled and white 
with mould ; but presently he tilted up the jar and pouring some 
of its contents into the dish, suddenly saw an Ashrafi fall from the 
vessel together with the fruit. Then, filled with greed, he turned 
out all that was within into another jar and wondered with 
exceeding wonder to find the lower half full of golden coins. 
Presently, putting up the moneys and the olives he closed the vessel 

AH Khwajah and the Merchant of Baghdad. 409 

and going back said to his wife, " Thou spakest sooth, for I have 
examined the jar and have found the fruit mouldy and foul of 
smell ; wherefore I returned it to its place and left it as it was 
aforetime." That night the merchant could not sleep a wink 
for thinking of the gold and how he might lay hands thereon ; 
and when morning morrowed he took out all the Ashrafis and 
buying some fresh olives in the Bazar filled up the jar with them 
and closed the mouth and set it in its usual place. Now it came 
to pass by Allah's mercy that at the end of the month Ali 
Khwajah returned safe and sound to Baghdad ; and he first went 
to his old friend, to wit, the merchant who, greeting him with 
feigned joy, fell on his neck, but withal was sore troubled and 
perplexed at what might happen. After salutations and much 
rejoicing on . either part Ali Khwajah bespake the merchant on 
business and begged that he might take back his jar of Asafiri- 
olives which he had placed in charge of his familiar. Quoth 
the merchant to Ali Khwajah, " O my friend, I wot not where 
thou didst leave thy jar of olives ; but here is the key, go down to 
the store-house and take all that is thine own." So Ali Khwajah 
did as he was bidden and carrying the jar from the magazine 
took his leave and hastened home ; but, when he opened the 
vessel and found not the gold coins, he was distracted and over- 
whelmed with grief and made bitter lamentation. Then he 
returned to the merchant and said, "O my friend, Allah, the 
All-present and the All-seeing, be my witness that, when I went 
on my pilgrimage to Meccah the Magnified, I left a thousand 
Ashrafis in that jar, and now I find them not. Canst thou tell me 
aught concerning them ? An thou in thy sore need have made use 
of them, it mattereth not so thou wilt give them back as soon as 
thou art able." The merchant, apparently pitying him, said, 
" O good my friend, thou didst thyself with thine hand set the 
jar inside the store-room. 1 wist not that thou hadst aught in it 
save olives ; yet as thou didst leave it, so in like manner didst 

410 Supplemental Nights. 

thou find it and carry it away ; and now thou charges'! me with 
theft of Ashrafis. It seemeth strange and passing strange that 
thou shouldst make such accusation. When thou wentest thou 
madest no mention of any money in the jar, but saidst that it was 
full of olives, even as thou hast found it. Hadst thou left gold 
coins therein, then surely thou wouldst have recovered them." 
Hereupon Ali Khwajah begged hard with much entreaty, saying, 
" Those thousand Ashrafis were all I owned, the money earned 
by years of toil : I do beseech thee have pity on my case and 
give them back to me." Replied the merchant, waxing wroth 
with great wrath, " O my friend, a fine fellow thou art to talk of 
honesty and withal make such false and lying charge. Begone : hie 
thee hence and come not to my house again ; for now I know thee 
as thou art, a swindler and impostor." Hearing this dispute 
between Ali Khwajah and the merchant all the people of the 
quarter came crowding to the shop. - And as the mom began 
to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

enD of t&e Sbi'x ^unfcrefc anto Jfoitg*fim JEtt 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
multitude which thronged about the merchant's shop warmly took 
up the matter ; and thus it became well known to all, rich and 
poor, within the city of Baghdad how that one Ali Khwajah had 
hidden a thousand Ashrafis within a jar of olives and had placed 
it on trust with a certain merchant ; moreover how, after pilgrim- 
ageing to Meccah and seven years of travel the poor man had 
returned, and that the rich man had gainsaid his words anent the 
gold and was ready to make oath that he had not received any 
trust of the kind. At length, when naught else availed, Ali 
Khwajah was constrained to bring the matter before the Kazi, and 
to claim one thousand Ashrafis of his false friend. The Judge 
asked, " What witnesses hast thou who may speak for thee ? " and 

AH Khwajah and the Merchant of Baghdad. 41 1 

the plaintiff answered, "O my lord the Kazi, I feared to tell the 
matter to any man lest all come to know of my secret. Allak 
Almighty is my sole testimony. This merchant was my friend 
and I recked not that he would prove dishonest and unfaithful." 
Quoth the Judge, " Then must I needs send for the merchant and 
hear what he saith on oath ; " and when the defendant came they 
made him swear by all he deemed holy, facing Ka'abah-wards 
with hands uplifted, and he cried, " I swear that I know naught 
of any Ashrafis belonging to AH Khwajah." * Hereat the Kazi 
pronounced him innocent and dismissed him from court ; and AH 
Khwajah went home sad at heart and said to himself, " Alas, what 
justice is this which hath been meted out to me, that I should lose. 
my money, and my just cause be deemed unjust ! It hath been 
truly said : He loseth the lave who sueth before a knave." On 
the next day he drew out a statement of his case ; and, as the 
Caliph Harun al-Rashid was on his way to Friday-prayers, he fell 
down on the ground before him and presented to him the paper. 
The Commander of the Faithful read the petition and having 
understood the case deigned give order saying, " To-morrow bring 
the accuser and the accused to the audience-hall and place the peti- 
tion before my presence, for I myself will enquire into this matter." 
That night the Prince of True Believers, as was his wont, donned 
disguise to walk about the squares of Baghdad and its streets and 
lanes and, accompanied by Ja'afar the Barmaki and Masrur the 
Sworder of his vengeance, proceeded to espy what happened in the 
city. Immediately on issuing forth he came upon an open place 
in the Bazar when he heard the hubbub of children a-playing and 
saw at scanty distance some ten or dozen boys making sport 
amongst themselves in the moonlight ; and he stopped awhile to 
watch their diversion. Then one amongst the lads, a goodly and 
a fair-complexioned, said to the others, " Come now and let uft 

1 An affidavit amongst Moslems is " iitis decbio," as in the jurisprudence of mediaeval 


412 Supplemental Nights. 

play the game of Kazi : I will be the Judge ; let one of you be 

Ali Khwajah-, and another the merchant with whom he placed the 
thousand Ashrafis in pledge before faring on his pilgrimage : so 
eome ye before me and let each one plead his plea." When the 
Caliph heard the name of Ali Khwajah he minded him of the peti- 
tion which had been presented to him for justice against the 
merchant, and bethought him that he would wait and see how the 
boy would perform the part of Kazi in their game and upon what 
decision he would decide. So the Prince watched the mock-trial 
with keen interest saying to himself, " This case hath verily made 
such stir within the city that even the children know thereof and 
re-act it in their sports." Presently, he amongst the lads who took 
the part of Ali Khwajah the plaintiff and his playmate who repre- 
sented the merchant of Baghdad accused of theft, advanced and 
stood before the boy who as the Kazi sat in pomp and dignity. 
Quoth the Judge, " O Ali Khwajah, what is thy claim against this 
merchant ? " and the complainant preferred his charge in a plea of 
full detail. Then said the Kazi to the boy who acted merchant, 
" What answerest thou to this complaint and why didst thou not 
return the gold pieces ? " The accused made reply even as the 
real defendant had done and denied the charge before the Judge, 
professing himself ready to take oath thereto. Then said the boy- 
Kazi, " Ere thou swear on oath that thou hast not taken the 
money, I would fain see for myself the jar of olives which the 
plaintiff deposited with thee on trust." Then turning to the boy 
who represented Ali Khwajah he cried, " Go thou and instantly 
produce the jar that I may inspect it." And when the vessel was 
brought the Kazi said to the two contentious, "See now and say 
me : be this the very jar which thou, the plaintiff, leftest with the 
defendant ? " and both answered that it was one and the same. 
Then said the self-constituted Judge, " Open now the jar and bring 
hither some of the contents that I may see the state in which the 
Asafiri-olives actually are. Then tasting of the fruit, " How is 

Alt Khwajah and the Merchant of Baghdad* 413 

this ? I find their flavour is fresh and their state excellent. Surely 
during the lapse of seven twelvemonths the olives would have 
become mouldy and rotten. Bring now before me two oil- 
merchants of the town that they may pass opinion upon them." 
Then two other of the boys assumed the parts commanded and 
coming into court stood before the Kazi, who asked, " Are ye olive- 
merchants by trade ? " They answered, " We are and this hath 
been our calling for many generations and in buying and selling 
olives we earn our daily bread." Then said the Kazi, * Tell me 
now, how long do olives keep fresh and well-flavoured ? " and said 
they, " O my lord, however carefully we keep them, after the third 
year they change flavour and colour and become no longer fit for 
food, in fact they are good only to be cast away." Thereupon 
quoth the boy-Kazi, " Examine me now these olives that are in 
this jar and say me how old are they and what is their condition 

and savour." And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held 

her peace till 

i)e en& of tie S>ix }un&teH anU jFortg-wtonti Nifi&t, 

THEN said she ; 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the two 

boys who played the parts of oil-merchants pretended to take some 
berries from the jar and taste them and presently they said, " O our 
lord the Kazi, these olives are in fair condition and full-flavoured. 1 ' 
Quoth the Kazi, " Ye speak falsely, for 'tis seven years since AH 
Khwajah put them in the jar as he was about to go a-pilgrimaging ;" 
and quoth they, " Say whatso thou wilt those olives are of this 
year's growth, and there is not an oil-merchant in all Baghdad but 
who will agree with us." Moreover the accused was made to taste 
and smell the fruits and he could not but admit that it Was even 
so as they had avouched. Then said the boy-Kazi to the boy- 
defendant, " 'Tis clear thou art a rogue and a rascal, and thou hast 
clone a deed wherefor thou richly deservest the gibbet" Hearing 
this the children frisked about and clapped their hands with glee 

414 Supplemental Nights. 

and gladness, then seizing hold of him who acted as the merchant 
of Baghdad, they led him off as to execution. The Commander 
of the Faithful, Harun al-Rashid, was greatly pleased at this 
acuteness of the boy who had assumed the part of judge in the 
play, and commanded his Wazir Ja'afar saying, "Mark well the 
lad who enacted the Kazi in this mock-trial and see that thou pro- 
duce him on the morrow : he shall try the case in my presence 
substantially and in real earnest, even as we have heard him deal 
with it in play. Summon also the Kazi of this city that he may 
learn the administration of justice from this child. Moreover send" 
word to AH Khwajah bidding him bring with him the jar of olives, 
and have also in readiness two oil-merchants of the town." Thus 
as they walked along the Caliph gave orders to the Wazir and 
then returned to his palace. So on the morrow Ja'afar the Bar- 
maki went to that quarter of the town where the children had 
enacted the mock-trial and asked the schoolmaster where his 
scholars might be, and he answered, " They have all gone away, 
each to his home." So the Minister visited the houses pointed 
out to him and ordered the little ones to appear in his presence. 
Accordingly they were brought before him, when he said to them, 
" Who amongst you is he that yesternight acted the part of Kazi 
in play and passed sentence in the case of AH Khwajah ? " The 
eldest of them replied, " 'Twas I, O my lord the Wazir ; " and 
then he waxed pale, not knowing why the question was put. Cried 
the Minister," Come along with me; the Commander of the Faith- 
ful hath need of thee." At this the mother of the lad was sore 
afraid and wept ; but Ja'afar comforted her and said, " O my lady, 
have no fear and trouble not thyself. Thy son will soon return to 
thee in safety, Inshallah God willing and methinks the Sultan 
will show much favour unto him." The woman's heart was 
heartened on hearing these words of the Wazir and she joyfully 
dressed her boy in his best attire and sent him off with the Wazir, 
who led him by the hand to the Caliph's audience-hall and executed 

AH Khwajah and the Merchant of Baghdad. 41 $ 

all the other commandments which had been issued by his liege 
lord. Then the Commander of the Faithful, having taken seat 
upon the throne of justice, set the boy upon a seat beside him, and 
as soon as the contending parties appeared before him, that is AH 
Khwajah and the merchant of Baghdad, he commanded them to 
state each man his case in presence of the child who should 
adjudge the suit. So the two, plaintiff and defendant recounted 
their contention before the boy in full detail ; and when the 
accused stoutly denied the charge and was about to swear on 
oath that what he said was true, with hands uplifted and facing 
Ka'abah-wards, the child-Kazi prevented him, saying, " Enough ! 
swear not on oath till thou art bidden ; and first let the jar of olives 
be produced in Court." Forthwith the jar was brought forward and 
placed before him ; and the lad bade open it; then, tasting one he 
gave also to two oil-merchants who had been summoned, that they 
might do likewise and declare how old was the fruit and whether its 
savour was good or bad. They did his bidding and said, "The flavour 
of these olives hath not changed and they are of this year's growth." 
Then said the boy, " Methinks ye are mistaken, for seven years 
ago Ali Khwajah put the olives into the jar : how then could fruit 
of this year find their way therein ? " But they replied, " 'Tis even 
as we say : an thou believe not our words send straightway for 
other oil-merchants and make enquiry of them, so shalt thou know 
if we speak sooth or lies." But when the merchant of Baghdad 
saw that he could no longer avail to prove his innocence, he con- 
fessed everything ; to wit, how he had taken out the Ashrafis and 
filled the jar with fresh olives. Hearing this the boy said to the 
Prince of Tru'e Believers, " O gracious Sovereign, last night in 
play we tried this cause, but thou alone hast power to apply the 
penalty. I have adjudged the matter in thy presence and I humbly 
pray that thou punish this merchant according to the law of 
the Koran and the custom of the Apostle ; and thou decree the 
restoring of his thousand gold pieces to Ali Khwajah, for that 

416 Supplemental Nights. 

he hath been proved entitled to them." And as the morn 

began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

f&fy en* of t&e Sbfx f^untwtr antr jportg-t&irtr Nfg&t, 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 

Caliph ordered the merchant of Baghdad to be taken away and be 
hanged, after he should have made known where he had put the 
thousand Ashrafis and that these should have been restored to their 
rightful owner, Ali Khwajah. He also turned to the Kazi who had 
hastily adjudged the case, and bade him learn from that lad to do his 
duty more sedulously and conscientiously. Moreover the Prince of 
True Believers embraced the boy, and ordered that the Wazir give 
him a thousand pieces of gold from the royal treasury and conduct 
him safely to his home and parents. 1 And after, when the lad grew to 
man's estate, the Commander of the Faithful made him one of his 
cup-companions and furthered his fortunes and ever entreated him 
with the highmost honour. But when Queen Shahrazad had ended 
the story of Ali Khwajah and the merchant of Baghdad she said, 
" Now, O auspicious King, I would relate a more excellent history 
than any, shouldst thou be pleased to hear that I have to say ; " and 
King Shahryar replied, '* By Allah ! what an admirable tale is this 
thou hast told : my ears do long to hear another as rare and commend- 
able." So Shahrazad began forthright to recount the adventures of 2 

A In Arab folk-lore there are many instances of such precocious boys enfants terribles 
they must be in real life. In Ibn Khali, (iii. 104) we find notices of a book " Kitab 
Nujaba al-Abna = Treatise on DistinguishedChildren,by Ibn Zakar al-Sakalli (the Sicilian), 
ob. A.D. 1169-70. And the boy-Kazi is a favourite role in the plays of peasant-lads 
who enjoy the irreverent "chaff" almost as much as when "making a Pasha." This 
reminds us of the boys electing Cyrus as their King in sport (Herodotus, i. 114). For 
the cycle of " Precocious Children " and their adventures, see Mr. Clouston (Popular 
Tales, etc., ii. 1-14)* who enters into the pedigree and affiliation. I must, however, 
differ with that able writer when he remarks at the end, "And now we may regard the 
story of Valerius Maximus with suspicion, and that of Lloyd as absolutely untrue, so 
far as William Noy's alleged share in the 'case.'" The jest or the event happening 
again and again is no valid proof of its untruth ; and it is often harder to believe in 
derivation than in spontaneous growth. 

2 In Galland Ali Cogia, Marchand de Bagdad, is directly followed by the Histoire efu 
Cheval Enchante. For this "Ebony Horse," as I have called it, see vol. v. p. 32. 




IN days of yore and times long gone before there was a Sultan 
of India who begat three sons; the eldest hight Prince Husayn, 
the second Prince Ali, and the youngest Prince Ahmad ; moreover 
he had a niece, named Princess Nur al-Nihar, 2 the daughter of his 
cadet brother who, dying early, left his only child under her uncle's 
charge. The King busied himself with abundant diligence about 
her instruction and took all care that she should be taught to read 
and write, sew and embroider, sing and deftly touch all instruments 
of mirth and merriment. This Princess also in beauty and loveliness 
and in wit and wisdom far excelled all the maidens of her own 
age in every land. She was brought up with the Princes her 
cousins in all joyance ; and they ate together and played together 

1 Bdnu " = a lady, a dame of high degree generally, t.g. the (Shah's) Banu-i-Harem 
in James Morier (" The Minca," iii. 50), who rightly renders Pari anu = Pau\ of the first 
quality. " Peri " (Pad) in its modem form has a superficial resemblance to " Fairy ;" 
but this disappears in the " Pairika " of the Avesta and the " Pairik " of the modem 
Parsee. In one language only, the Multdnl, there is a masculine form for the word 
" Par*" = a he-fairy (Scinde, ii. 203). In Al- Islam these Peris are.beautiful feminine 
pints who, created after the " Divs " (Tabari, i. 7), mostly believe in Allah and the 
Koran and desire the good of mankind : they are often attacked by the said Divs, giants 
or demons, who imprison them in cages hung to the highest trees, and here the 
captives are visited by their friends who feed them with the sweetest of scents. 
I have already contrasted them with the green-coated pygmies to which the 
grotesque fancy of Northern Europe has reduced them. Bdou in Pers. = a princess, 
a lady, and is still much used, e.g. Bdnu-i-Harim, the Dame of the Serraglio, 
whom foreigners call " Queen of Persia ;" and Ardm-Banu = " the calm Princess," a 
nickname. A Greek story equivalent of Prince Ahmad is told by Pio in Cento Pop*, 
laires Greet (No. ii. p. 98) and called To xptxro KOVTUKI, the Golden box. Three youths 
(iroAXtxopia) love the same girl and agree that whoever shall learn the best craft (fycot 
/faOrj TrXela naXrjv rbonrjv) shall marry her ; one becomes an astrologer, the second 
can raise the dead, and the third can run faster than air. They find her at death's door, 
and her soul, which was at her teeth ready to start, goes down (*at wd '% ^v\i? rm 
wirco, irovra** irAcia <rrd 8oVr*a 

Light of the Day. 

Supplemental Nights. 

and slept together ; and the king had determined in his mind that 
when she reached marriageable age he would give her in wedlock 
to some one of the neighbouring royalties ; but, when she came to 
years of discretion, her uncle perceived that the three Princes his 
sons were all three deep in love of her, and each desired in his 
heart to woo and to win and to wed her. Wherefore was the King 
sore troubled in mind and said to himself, " An I give the Lady 
Nur al-Nihdr in wedlock to any one of her cousins, the other 
twain will be dissatisfied and murmur against my decision ; withal 
rny soul cannot endure to see them grieved and disappointed. 
And should I marry her to some stranger the three Princes my 
sons will be sore distressed and saddened in soul ; nay, who 
knoweth that they may not slay themselves or go forth and betake 
them to some far and foreign land ? The matter is a troublous and a 
perilous ; so it behoveth me their sire to take action on such wise that 
if one of them espouse her, the other two be not displeased thereat" 
Long time the Sultan revolved the matter in his mind ; and at 
length he devised a device ; and, sending for the three Princes, 
addressed them saying, " O my sons, ye are in my opinion of equal 
merit one with other ; nor can I give preference to any of you and 
marry him to the Princess Nur al-Nihar ; nor yet am I empowered 
to wed her with all three. But I have thought of one plan 
whereby she shall be wife to one of you, and yet shall not cause aught 
of irk or envy to his brethren ; so may your mutual love and 
affection remain unabated, and one shall never be jealous of the 
other's happiness. Brief, my device is this : Go ye and travel to 
distant countries, each one separating himself from the others ; and 
do ye bring me back the thing most wondrous and marvellous of all 
sights ye may see upon your wayfarings ; and he who shall return 
with the rarest of curiosities shall be husband to the Princess Nur 
al-Nihar. Consent ye now to this proposal ; and whatso of money 
ye require for travel and for the purchase of objects seld-seen and 
singular, take ye from the royal treasury as much as ye desire." 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 42 1 

The three Princes, who were ever submissive to their sire, consented 
with one voice to this proposal, and each was satisfied and con- 
fident that he would bring the King the most extraordinary of 
gifts and thereby win the Princess to wife. So the Sultan bade 
give to each what moneys he wanted without stint or account, and 
counselled them to make ready for the journey without stay or 
delay and depart their home in the Peace of Allah. - And as 
the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

enfc of tf)c Sbix f^uirimtr anto Jfortp.fotnrti) 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the three 
princely brothers forthright made them ready for journey and 
voyage. So they donned disguise, preferring the dress of wander- 
ing merchants ; and, buying such things as they needed and taking 
with them each his suite they mounted steeds of purest blood and 
rode forth in a body from the palace. For several stages they 
travelled the same road until, reaching a place where it branched 
off in three different ways, they alighted at a Khan and ate the 
evening meal. Then they made compact and covenant, that 
whereas they had thus far travelled together they should at break 
of day take separate roads and each wend his own way and all 
seek different and distant regions, agreeing to travel for the space 
of one year only, after which, should they be in the land of the 
living, all three would rendezvous at that same caravanserai and 
return in company to the King their sire. Furthermore, they 
determined that the first who came back to the Khan should await 
the arrival of the next, and that two of them should tarry there in 
expectancy of the third. Then, all this matter duly settled, they 
retired to rest, and when the morning morrowed they fell on one 
another's necks and bade farewell ; and, lastly, mounting their horses, 
they rode forth each in his own direction. Now Prince Husayn, 
the eldest, had oft heard recount the wonders of the land Bishan- 

422 Supplemental Nights. 

garh 1 , and for a long while had wished to visit it ; so he took the 
road which led thither, and, joining himself to a caravan journeying 
that way, accompanied it by land and by water and traversed many 
regions, desert wilds and stony wolds, dense jungles and fertile 
tracts, with fields and hamlets and gardens and townships. After 
three months spent in wayfare at length he made Bishangarh, a 
region over-reigned by manifold rulers, so great was its extent and 
so far reaching was its power. He put up at a Khan built specially 
for merchants who came from the farthest lands, and from the folk 
who dwelt therein he heard tell that the city contained a large 
central market 2 wherein men bought and sold all manner of rarities 
and wondrous things. Accordingly, next day Prince Husayn 

1 Galland has " Bisnagar," which the H. V. corrupts to Bishan-Garh = Vishnu's 
Fort, an utter misnomer. Bisnagar, like Bijnagar, Beejanuggur, Vizianuggur, etc., is 
a Prakrit corruption of the Sanskrit Vijayanagara = City of Victory, the far-famed 
Hindu city and capital of the Narasingha or Lord of Southern India, mentioned in The 
Nights, vols. vi. 18 ; ix. 84. Nicolo de' Conti in the xvth century found it a magni- 
ficent seat of Empire some fifteen marches south of the pestilential mountains which 
contained the diamond mines. Accounts of its renown and condition in the last genera- 
tion have been given by James Grant (" Remarks on the Dekkan") and by Captain 
Moore (" Operations of Little's Detachment against Tippoo "Sultan "). The latest 
description of it is in " The Indian Empire," by Sir William W. Hunter. Vijayanagar, 
village in Bellary district, Madras, lat. 15 18' N., long. 76 30' E. ; pop. (1871), 
437, inhabiting 172 houses. The proper name of this village is Hampi, but Vijayanagar 
was the name of the dynasty (?) and of the kingdom which had its capital here and was 
the last great Hindu power of the South.> Founded by two adventurers in the middle 
of the xivth century, it lasted for two centuries till its star went down at Talikot in 
A.D. 1565. For a description of the ruins of the old city of Vijayanagar, which covers a 
total area of nine square miles, see "Murray's Handbook for Madras," by E. B. 
Eastwick (1879), vol. ix. p. 235. Authentic history in Southern India begins with the 
Hindu kingdom of Vijiyanagar, or Narsinha, from A.D. ui8 to 1565. The capital can 
still be traced within the Madras district of Bellary, on the right bank of the Tungab- 
hadra river vast ruins of temples, fortifications, tanks and bridges, haunted by hyaenas 
and snakes. For at least three centuries Vijayanagar ruled over the southern part of 
the Indian triangle. Its Rajas waged war and made peace on equal terms with 
the Mohamadan sultans of the Deccan. See vol. iv. p. 335, Sir W. W. Hunter's 
"Imperial Gazetteer of India," Edit. 1881. 

2 The writer means the great Bazar, the Indian " Chauk," which = our English Carfax 
or Carfex (Carrefour) and forms the core of ancient cities in the East. It is in some 
places, as Damascus, large as one of the quarters, and the narrow streets or lanes, vaulted 
over or thatched, are all closed at night by heavy doors well guarded by men and dogs. 
Trades are still localised, each owning its own street, after the fashion of older England, 
where we read of Draper's Lane and Butchers' Row ; Lombard Street, Cheapside and 
Old Jewry. 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 423 

repaired to the Bazar and on sighting it he stood amazed at the 
prospect of its length and width. It was divided into many streets, 
all vaulted over but lit up by skylights ; and the shops on either 
side were substantially builded, all after one pattern and nearly of 
the same size, while each was fronted by an awning which kept off 
the glare and made a grateful shade. Within these shops were 
ranged and ordered various kinds of wares ; there were bales of 
"woven air" 1 and linens of finest tissue, plain -white or dyed or 
adorned with life-like patterns wherefrom beasts and trees and 
blooms stood out so distinctly that one might believe them to be 
very ferals, bosquets and gardens. There were moreover silken 
goods, brocaded stuffs, and finest satins from Persia and Egypt of 
endless profusion ; in the China warehouses stood glass vessels of 
all kinds, and here and there were stores wherein tapestries and 
thousands of foot-carpets lay for sale. So Prince Husayn walked 
on from shop to shop and marvelled much to see such wondrous 
things whereof he had never even dreamt : and he came at length 
to the Goldsmiths' Lane and espied gems and jewels and golden 
and silvern vessels studded with diamonds and rubies, emeralds, 
pearls and other precious stones, all so lustrous and dazzling bright 
that the stores were lit up with their singular brilliancy. Hereat 
he said to himself, " If in one street only there be such wealth and 
jewels so rare, Allah Almighty and none save He knoweth what 
may be the riches in all this city/' He was not less astonished to 
behold the Brahmins, how their woman-kind for excess of opulence 
bedecked themselves with the finest gems and were ornamented 
with the richest gear from front to foot . their very slave-boys and 
handmaids wore golden necklaces and bracelets and bangles studded 
with precious stones. Along the length of one market-street were 

1 The local name of the Patna gauzes. The term was originally applied to the 
produce of the Coan looms, which, however, was anticipated in ancient Egypt. See 
p. 287 of " L'ArcMologie fegyptienne" (Paris, A. Quantin) of the learned Professor 
G. Maspero, a most able popular work by a savant who has left- many regrets on the 
banks of Nilus. 

424 Supplemental Nights. 

ranged hosts of flower-sellers ; for all the folk, both high and low, 
wore wreaths and garlands : some carried nosegays in hand, other 
some bound fillets round their heads, while not a few had ropes and 
festoons surrounding and hanging from their necks. The whole 
place seemed one huge parterre of bloomery; even traders set 
bouquets in every shop and stall, and the scented air was heavy 
with perfume. Strolling to and fro Prince Husayn was presently 
tired and would fain have sat him down somewhere to rest awhile, 
when one of the merchants, noting his look of weariness, with 
kindly courtesy prayed him be seated in his store. After saluting 
him with the salam the stranger sat down ; and anon he saw a 
broker come that way, offering for sale a carpet some four yards 
square, and crying, " This be for sale ; who giveth me its worth ; 
to wit, thirty thousand gold pieces ? " And as the morn began 
to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

Se cnfc of t!)e S>fx f^imfcrrtr an& JForts-fiftl) .$Jfaf)t 

THEN said she: 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 

Prince marvelled with excessive marvel at the price, and, beckon- 
ing the dealer, examined his wares right well ; then said he, " A 
carpet such as this is selleth for a few silverlings. What special 
virtue hath it that thou demand therefor the sum of thirty 
thousand gold coins ? " The broker, believing Husayn to be a 
merchant man lately arrived at Bishangarh, answered him say- 
ing, " O my lord, thinkest thou I price this carpet at too high 
a value? My master hath bidden me not to sell it for less than 
forty thousand Ashrafis." Quoth the Prince, " It surely doth 
possess some wondrous virtue, otherwise wouldst thou not demand 
so prodigious a sum ; " and quoth the broker, " 'Tis true, O my 
lord, its properties are singular and marvellous. Whoever sitteth 
on this carpet and willeth in thought to be taken up and set down 
upon other site will, in the twinkling of an eye, be borne thither, 

Prince fthmad and the Fairy Peri^Banu. 425 

be that place nearhand or distant many a day's journey and 
difficult to reach." 1 The Prince hearing these words said to him-, 
self, " Naught so wonder-rare as this rug can I carry back to the 
Sultan my sire to my gift, or any that afford him higher satisfac- 
tion and delight. Almighty Allah be praised, the aim of my 
wayfare is attained and hereby, In shall ah ! I shall win to my 
wish. This, if anything, will be to him a joy for ever. 1 * Where- 
fore the Prince, with intent to buy the Flying Carpet, turned to 
the broker and said, "If indeed it have properties such as thou 
describes!, verily the price thou askest therefor is not over much, 
and I am ready to pay thee the sum required." The other 
rejoined, " An thou doubt my words I pray thee put them to the 
test and by such proof remove thy suspicions. Sit now upon this 
square of tapestry, and at thy mere wish and will it shall transport 
us to the caravanserai wherein thou abidest : on this wise shalt 

1 The great prototype of the Flying Carpet is that of Sulayman bin Datid, a fable 
which the Koran (chap. xxi. 81) borrowed from the Talmud, not from "Indian 
fictions." It was of green sendal embroidered with gold and silver and studded with 
precious stones, and its length and breadth were such that all the Wise King's host 
could stand upon it, the men to the left and the Jinns to the right of the throne ; and 
when all were ordered, the Wind, at royal command, raised it and wafted it whither the 
Prophet would, while an army of birds flying overhead canopied the host from the sun. 
In the Middle Ages the legend assumed another form. " Duke Richard, surnamcd 
4 Richard sans peur,' walking with his courtiers one evening in the forest of Moulineaux, 
near one of his castles on the banks of the Seine, hearing a prodigious noise coming 
towards him, sent one of his esquires to know what was the matter, who brought him 
word that it was a company of people under a leader or King. Richard, with five 
hundred of his bravest Normans, went out to see a sight which the peasants were so 
accustomed to that they viewed it two or three times a week without fear. The sight 
of the troop, preceded by two men, -who spread a cloth on th* ground* made all the 
Normans run away, and leave the Duke alone. He saw the strangers form themselves 
into a circle on the cloth, and on asking who they were, was told that they were the 
spirits of Charles V., King of France, and his servants, condemned to expiate their 
sins by fighting all night against the wicked and the damned. Richard desired to be 
of their party, and receiving a strict charge not to quit the cloth, was conveyed with 
them to Mount Sinai, where, leaving them without quitting the doth, he said his 
prayers io the Church of St. Catherine's Abbey there, while they were fighting, and 
returned with them. In proof of the truth of this story, he brought back half the 
wedding-ring of a knight in that convent, whose wife, after fix years, concluded him 
dead, and was going to take a second husband." (Note in the Lucknow Edition of Tht. 

Supplemental Nights. 

thou be certified of my words being sooth, and when assured of 
their truth thou mayest count out to me, there and then, but not 
before, the value of my wares/' Accordingly, the man spread out 
the carpet upon the ground behind his shop and seated tne Prince 
thereupon, he sitting by his side. Then, at the mere will 1 and 
wish of Prince Husayn, the twain were at once transported as 
though borne by the throne of Solomon to the Khan. Z So the 
eldest of the brothers joyed with exceeding joy to think that he 
had won so rare a thing, whose like could nowhere be found in 
the lands nor amongst the Kings ; and his heart and soul were 
gladdened for that he had come to Bishangarh and hit upon 
such a prodigy. Accordingly he counted out the forty thousand 
Ashrafis as payment for the carpet, and gave, moreover, another 
twenty thousand by way of sweetmeat to the broker. Further- 
more, he ceased not saying to himself that the King on seeing it 
would forthright wed him to the Princess Nur al-Nihar ; for it 
were clear impossible that either of his brothers, e'en though they 
searched the whole world over and over, could find a rarity to com- 
pare with this. He longed to take seat upon the carpet that very 
instant and fly to his own country, or, at least, to await his brothers 
at the caravanserai where they had parted under promise and 
covenant, pledged and concluded, to meet again at the year's end. 
But presently he bethought him that the delay would be long and 

1 Amongst Eastern peoples, and especially adepts, the will of man is not a mere term for 
a mental or cerebral operation, it takes the rank of a substance ; it becomes a mighty 
motive power, like table-turning and other such phenomena which, now looked upon as 
child's play, will perform a prime part in the Kinetics of the century to come. If a few pair 
of hands imposed upon a heavy dinner-table can raise it in the air, as I have often seen, 
what must we expect to result when the new motive force shall find its Franklin and be 
shown to the world as real "Vril''? The experiment of silently willing a subject to 
act in a manner not suggested by speech or sign has been repeatedly tried and succeeded 
in London drawing-rooms; and it has lately been suggested that atrocious crimes have 
resulted from overpowering volition. In cases of paralysis the Faculty is agreed upon 
the fact that local symptoms disappear when the will-power returns to the brain. And 
here I will boldly and baldly state my thebry that, in sundry cases, spectral appearance* 
(ghosts) and abnormal smells and sounds are simply the effect of a Will which has, so to 
speak, created them. 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 427 

longsome, and much he feared lest he be tempted to take some 
rash step ; wherefore he resolved upon sojourning in the country 
whose King and subjects he had ardently desired to behold for many 
a day, and determined that he would pass the time in sight-seeing 
and in pleasuring over the lands adjoining. So Prince Husayn 
tarried in Bishangarh some months. Now the King of that 
country was wont to hold a high court once every week for 
hearing disputes and adjudging causes which concerned foreign 
merchants ; and thus the Prince ofttimes saw the King, but to none 
would he tell a word of his adventure. However, inasmuch as he 
was comely of countenance, graceful of gait, and courteous of accost, 
stout hearted and strong, wise and ware and witty, he was held by 
the folk in higher honour than the Sultan ; not to speak of the 
traders his fellows ; and in due time he became a favourite at 
court and learned of the ruler himself all matters concerning his 
kingdom and his grandeur and greatness. The Prince also 
visited the most famous Pagodas 1 of that country. The first he 
saw was wrought in brass and orichalch of most exquisite work- 
manship: its inner cell measured three yards square and con- 
tained amiddlemost a golden image in size and stature like unto a 
man of wondrous beauty ; and so cunning was the workmanship 
that the face seemed to fix its eyes, two immense rubies of enormous 
value, upon all beholders no matter where they stood. 2 He also 
saw another idol-temple, not less strange and rare than this, 
builded in a village on a plain surface of some half acre long and 
broad, wherein bloomed lovely rose-trees and jasmine and herb- 

1 The text has " But-Khinah "= idol-house (or room) syn. with " But-Kadah " = 
image-cuddy, which has been proposed as the derivation of the disputed "Pagoda.** 
The word " Khinah " also appears in our balcony, origin, "balcony," through the 
South* European tongues, the Persian being " Bila-khanah "= high room. Frooi 
" Kadah " also we derive " caddy/' now confined to nautical language. 

* Europe contains sundry pictures which have, or are supposed to have, this property ; 
witness the famous Sudariura bearing the head of Jesus. The trick, (or it is not Art, is 
highly admired by the credulous. 


428 Supplemental Nights. 

basil and many other sweet-scented plants, whose perfume mad$! 
the air rich with fragrance. Around its court ran a wall three 
feet high, so that no animal might stray therein ; and in the 
centre was a terrace well-nigh the height of a man, all made of 
white marble and wavy alabaster, each and every slab being 
dressed so deftly and joined with such nice joinery that the whole 
pavement albeit covering so great a space, seemed to the sight but 
a single stone. In the centre of the terrace stood the domed fane 
towering some fifty cubits high and conspicuous for many miles 
around : its length was thirty cubits and its breadth twenty, and 
the red marbles of the revetment were clean polished as a mirror, 
so that every image was reflected in it to the life. The dome 
was exquisitely carved and sumptuously ornamented without ; 
and within were ranged in due rank and sequence rows and rows 
of idols. To this, the Holy of Holies, from morn till eve 
thousands of Brahmins, men and women, came flocking for daily 
worship. They had sports and diversions as well as rites and 
ceremonies : some feasted and others danced, some sang, others 
played on instruments of mirth and merriment, while here and 
there were plays and revels and innocent merry-makings. And 
hither at every season flocked from distant lands hosts of pilgrims 
seeking to fulfil their vows and to perform their orisons ; all 
bringing gifts of gold and silver coin and presents rare and costly 
which they offered to the gods in presence of the royal officers. 
- And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace 

entt of t&e &tx f^utrtrrft anfc 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Prince 
Husayn also saw a fte held once a year within the city of Bish^ 
angarh, and the Ryots all, both great and small, gathered together 
and circumambulated the Pagodas ; chiefly circuiting one which 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri- Ban*. 429 

in size and grandeur surpassed all others. Great and learned 
Pandits versed in the Shdstras 1 made journeys of four or five 
months and greeted one another at that festival ; thither too the 
folk from all parts of India pilgrimaged in such crowds that 
Prince Husayn was astounded at the sight ; and, by reason of the 
multitudes that thronged around the temples, he could not see 
the mode in which the gods were worshipped. On one side of the 
adjacent plain which stretched far and wide, stood a new-made 
scaffolding of ample size and great magnificence, nine storeys 
high, and the lower part supported by forty pillars ; and here one 
day in every week the King assembled his Wazirs for the purpose 
of meting out justice to all strangers in the land. The palace 
within was richly adorned and furnished with costly furniture r 
without, upon the wall-faces were limned homely landscapes and 
scenes of foreign parts and notably all manner beasts and birds 
and insects even gnats and flies, portrayed with such skill of brain 
and cunning of hand that they seemed real and alive and the 
country-folk and villagers seeing from afar paintings of lions and 
tigers and similar ravenous beasts, were filled with awe and dismay. 
On the three other sides of the scaffolding were pavilions, also of 
wood, built for use of the commons, illuminated and decorated 
inside and outside like the first, and wroughten so cunningly that 
men could turn them round, with all the people in them, and moving 
them about transfer them to whatsoever quarter they willed. On 
such wise they shifted these huge buildings by aid of machinery ;* 
and the folk inside could look upon a succession of sports and 
games. Moreover, on each side of the square elephants were 
ranged in ranks, the number amounting to well-nigh one thousand, 

1 i.e. the Hindu Scripture or Holy Writ, e.g. " Kima-Shaslre" = the Cupid-gospel. 

1 This shiftirig theatre is evidently borrowed by Galland from Pliny (N. H. xxxvi., 24) 
who tells that in B.C. 50, C. Curio built two large wooden theatres which could be 
wheeled round and formed into an amphitheatre. The simple device seems to stir the 
bile of the unmecbanical old Roman, so unlike the Greek in powers of invention. 

43O Supplemental Nights. 

their trunks and cars and hinder parts being painted with cinnabar 
and adorned with various lively figures ; their housings were of 
gold brocade and their howdahs purfled with silver, carrying 
minstrels who performed on various instruments, whilst buffoons 
delighted the crowd with their jokes and mimes played their most 
diverting parts. Of all the sports, however, which the Prince 
beheld, the elephant-show amused him most and filled him with 
the greatest admiration. One huge beast, which could be wheeled 
about where the keepers ever listed, for that his feet rested upon a 
post which travelled on casters, held in his trunk a flageolet 
whereon he played so sweetly well that all the people were fain to 
cry Bravo ! There was another but a smaller animal wjiich stood 
upon one end of a beam laid crosswise upon, and attached with 
hinges to, a wooden block eight cubits high, and on the further 
end was placed an iron weight as heavy as the elephant, who 
would press down for some time upon the beam until the end 
touched the ground, and then the weight would raise him up 
again. 1 Thus the beam swung like a see-saw aloft and adown ; 
and, as it moved, the elephant swayed to and fro and kept time 
with the bands of music, loudly trumpeting the while. The 
people moreover could wheel about this elephant from place to 
place as he stood balanced on the beam ; and such exhibitions of 
learned elephants were mostly made in presence of the King. 
Prince Husayn spent well nigh a year in sight-seeing amongst 
the fairs and festivals of Bishangarh ; and, when the period of the 
fraternal compact drew near, he spread his carpet upon the court- 
ground behind the Khan wherein he lodged, and sitting thereon, 
together with the suite and the steeds and all he had brought with 
him, mentally wished that he might be transported to the caravan- 
serai where the three brothers had agreed to meet. No sooner 

1 This trick is now common in the circuses and hippodromes of Europe, horses and 
bulls being easily taught to perform it ; but India has as yet not produced anything equal 
to the ' Cyclist elephant " of Paris. 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 43* 

had he formed the thought than straightway, in the twinkling of 
an eye, the carpet rose high in air and sped through space and 
carried them to the appointed stead where, still garbed as a merchant 
he remained in expectation of his brothers' coming. Hearken 
flow, O auspicious King, to what befel Prince Ali, the second 
brother of Prince Husayn. On the third day after he had parted 
from the two others, he also joined a caravan and journeyed 
towards Persia ; then, after a march of four months arriving at 
Shiraz, the capital of Iran-land, he alighted at a Khan, he and his 
fellow-travellers with whom he had made a manner of friendship ; 
and, passing as a jeweller, there took up his abode with them. 
Next day the traders fared forth to buy wares and to sell their 
goods ; but Prince Ali, who had brought with him naught of 
vendible, and only the things he needed, presently doffed his 
travelling dress, and in company with a comrade of the caravan 
entered the chief Bazar, known as the Bazistan, 1 or cloth-market. 
Ali strolled about the place, which was built of brick and where 
all the shops had arched roofs resting on handsome columns ; and 
he admired greatly to behold the splendid store-houses exposing 
for sale all manner goods of countless value. He wondered much 
what wealth was in the town if a single market-street contained 
riches such as these. And as the brokers went about crying 
their goods for sale, he saw one of them hending in hand an 
ivory tube in length about a cubit, which he was offering for sale 
at the price of thirty thousand Ashrafis. Hearing such demand 
Prince Ali thought to himself, " Assuredly this fellow is a fool who 

asketh such a price for so paltry a thing." And as the morn 

began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

1 This Arab.-Pcrs. compound, which we have corrupted to ".Bezestein " or " Duet* 
tin" and " Bezesieo," properly means a market-place for Baz or Ban = cloth, fini 
; but is used by many writers as = Bazar, tee " Kaysariab," vol. i, 266. 

432 Supplemental Nights. 

&e enU of tfie Sbix f^untirrti antr jfortg-sebentfi 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Prince 

AH presently asked one of the shopkeepers with whom he had 
made acquaintance, saying, " O my friend, is this man a, maniac that 
he asketh a sum of thirty thousand Ashrafis for this little pipe of 
ivory? Surely none save an idiot wotfid give him such a price and 
waste upon it such a mint of money." Said the shopman, " O my 
lord, this broker is wiser and warier than all the others of his 
calling, and by means of him I have sold goods worth thousands 
of sequins. Until yesterday he was in his sound senses ; but I 
cannot say what state is his to-day and whether or no he have 
lost his wits ; but this wot I well, that if he ask thirty thousand for 
yon ivory tube, 'twill be worth that same or even more. Howbeit 
we shall see with our own eyes. Sit thee here and rest within the 
shop until he pass this way." So Prince AH took where he was 
bidden and presently the broker was seen coming up the street. 
Then the shopman calling to him said, " O man, rare merit hath 
yon little pipe ; for all the folk are astounded to hear thee ask so 
high a price therefor ; nay more, this friend of mine thinketh that 
thou art crazy." The broker, a man of sense, was on no wise 
chafed at these words but answered with gentle speech, " O my 
^ord, I doubt not but that thou must deem me a madman to ask 
so high a price, and set so gceat a value upon an article so mean ; 
but when I shall have made known to thee its properties and 
virtues, thou wilt most readily consent to take it at that valuation. 
Not thou alone but all men who have heard me cry my cry laugh 
and name me ninny." So saying, the broker showed the Spying 
Tube to Prince-AH and handing it to him said, " Examine well, this 
ivory, the properties of which I will explain to thee. Thou seest 
that it is furnished with a piece of glass at either end j 1 and, shouldst 

1 The origin of the lens and its applied use to the telescope and the microscope are 
"lost" (as the Castle-guides of Edinburgh say) "in the glooms of antiquity." Well 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 433 

thou apply one extremity thereof to thine eye, thou shalt see what 
thing soe'er thou listest and it shall appear close by thy side though 
parted from thee by many an hundred of miles." Replied the Prince 
44 This passeth all conception, nor can I believe it to be veridical until 
I shall have tested it and I become satisfied that 'tis even as thou 
sayest." Hereupon the broker placed the little tube in Prince Ali's 
hand, and showing him the way to handle it said," Whatso thou 
mayest wish to descry will be shown to thee by looking through 
this ivory." Prince AH silently wished to sight his sire, and when 
he placed the pipe close to his eye forthwith he saw him hale and 
hearty, seated on his throne and dispensing justice to the people 
of his dominion. Then the youth longed with great longing to look 
upon his lady-love the Princess Nur al-Nihar ; and straightway he 
saw her also sitting upon her bed, sound and sane, talking and 
laughing, whilst a host of handmaids stood around awaiting her 
commands. The Prince was astonished exceedingly to behold this 
strange and wondrous spectacle, and said to himself, " An 1 should 
wander the whole world over for ten years or more and search in 
its every corner and cranny, I shall never find aught so rare and 
precious as this tube of ivory." Then quoth he to the broker, " The 
virtues of thy pipe I find are indeed those thou hast described, and 

ground glasses have been discovered amongst the finds of Egypt and Assyria : indeed 
much of the finer work of the primeval artists could not have been done without such 
aid. In Europe the "spy-glass" appears first in the Opus Majus of the learned 
Roger Bacon (circa A.D. 1270) ; and his "optic tube*' (whence his saying "all things 
are known by perspective "), chiefly contributed to make his wide-spread fame as a wizard. 
The telescope was popularised by Galileo who (as mostly happens) carried off and still 
keeps, amongst the vulgar, all the honours of invention. Some " Illustrators" of The 
Nights confound this Naxzarah," the Pers. "Dur-b(n," or far-seer, with the "Magic 
Mirror," a speculum which according to Cower was set up in Rome by Virgilius the 
Magician; hence the Mirror of Glass in the Squire's tale; Merlin's glassie Mirror of 
Spenser (F. Q. ii, 24) ; the mirror in the head of the monstrous fowl which forecast the 
Spanish invasion to the Mexicans ; the glass which in the hands of Cornelius Agripp* 
r A.D. 1520) showed to the Earl of Surrey fair Geraldine " sick in her bed ; " to the globe 
i glass in The Lusiads ; Dr. Dee's show-stone, a bit of cannel coal ; and lastly the 
zinc and copper disk of the absurdly called " electro- biologist." I have noticed thfc 
matter at some length in various places. 

434 Supplemental Nigkts. 

right willingly I give thee to its price the thirty thousand Ashrafis** 
Replied the salesman, " O my lord, my master hath sworn an oath 
that he will not part with it for less than forty thousand gold 
pieces." Hereupon the Prince, understanding that the broker was 
a just man and a true, weighed out to him the forty thousand 
sequins and became master of the Spying Tube, enraptured with 
the thought that assuredly it would satisfy his sire and obtain for 
him the hand of Princess Nur al-Nihar. So with mind at ease 
AH journeyed through Shiraz and over sundry parts of Persia ; 
and in fine, when the year was well nigh spent he joined a caravan 
and, travelling back to India, arrived safe and sound at the ap- 
pointed caravanserai whither Prince Husayn had foregone him. 
There the twain tarried awaiting the third brother's safe return. 
Such, O King Shahryar, is the story of the two brothers ; and now 
I beseech thee incline thine ear and hearken to what befel the 
youngest, to wit Prince Ahmad ; for indeed his adventure is yet 
more peregrine and seld-seen of all. When he had parted from 
his brothers, he took the road leading to Samarkand ; and, arriving 
there after long travel, he also like his brothers alighted at a Khan. 
Next day he fared forth to see the market-square, which folk call 
the Bazistan, and he found it fairly laid out, the shops wroughten 
with cunning workmanship and filled with rare stuffs and precious 
goods and costly merchandise. Now as he wandered to and fro he 
came across a broker who was hawking a Magical Apple and cry- 
ing aloud, " Who will buy this fruit, the price whereof be thirty-five 
thousand gold pieces ? " Quoth ^Prince Ahmad to the man, 
" Prithee let me see the fruit thou boldest in hand, and explain to 
me what hidden virtue it possesseth that thou art asking for it so 
high a value." Quoth the other, smiling and handing to him the 
apple, " Marvel not at this, O good my lord : in sooth I am certi- 
fied that when I shall have explained its properties and thou shalt see 
how it advantageth all mankind, thou wilt not deem my demand 
exorbitant ; nay, rather thou wilt gladly give a treasure-house of 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 435 

gold so thou may possess it." - And as the morn began to 
dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

en* of fye $ix ffiun&trtj an* 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King that the 
broker said moreover to Prince Ahmad, " Now hearken to me, O 
my lord, and I will tell theje what of virtue lieth in this artificial 
apple. If anyone be sick of a sickness however sore, nay more 
if he be ill nigh unto death, and perchance he smell this pome, he 
will forthwith recover and become well and whole of whatsoever 
disease he had, plague or pleurisy, fever or other malignant dis- 
temper, as though he never had been attacked ; and his strength 
will return to him forthright, and after smelling this fruit he will be 
free from all ailment and malady so long as life shall remain to 
him." Quoth Prince Ahmad, " How shall I be assured that what 
thou speakest is truth ? If the matter be even as thou sayest, then 
verily I will give thee right gladly the sum thou demandest." 
Quoth the broker, " O my lord, all men who dwell in the parts 
about Samarkand know full well how there once lived in this city 
a sage of wondrous skill who, after many years of toil and travail, 
wrought this apple by mixing medicines from herbs and minerals 
countless in number. All his good, which was great, he expended 
upon it, and when he had perfected it he made whole thousands of 
sick folk whom he directed only to smell the fruit But, alas ! his 
life presently came to an end and death overtook him suddenly ere 
he could save himself by the marvellous scent ; and, as he had won 
no wealth and left only a bereaved wife and a large family of young 
children and dependants manifold, his widow had no help but pro- 
vide for them a maintenance by parting with this prodigy. 1 ' While 
the salesman was telling his tale to the Prince a crowd of citizens 
gathered around them and one amongst the folk, who was well 
known to the broker, came forward and said, " A friend of mine 
lieth at home tick to the death: the doctors and surgeons all 

436 Supplemental Nigkts. 

despair of his life ; so I beseech thee let him smell this fruit thai 
he may live." Hearing these words, Prince Ahmad turned to 
the salesman and said, ' O my friend, if this sick man of whom 
thou hearest can recover strength by smelling the apple, then will 
I straightway buy it of thee at a valuation of forty thousand 
Ashrafis." The man had permission to sell it for a sum of thirty- 
five thousand ; so he was satisfied to receive five thousand by 
way of brokerage, and he rejoined, " 'Tis well, O my lord ; 
now mayest thou test the virtues of this apple and be per- 
suaded in thy mind : hundreds of ailing folk have I made whole 
by means of it." Accordingly the Prince accompanied the people 
to the sick man's house and found him lying on his bed with the 
breath in his nostrils ; but, as soon as the dying man smelt the 
fruit, at once recovering strength he rose in perfect health, sane and 
sound. Hereupon Ahmad bought the Magical Apple of the dealer 
and counted out to him the forty thousand Ashrafis. Presently, hav- 
ing gained the object of his travels, he resolved to join some caravan 
marching Indiawards and return to his father's home ; but mean- 
while he resolved to solace himself with the sights and marvels of 
Samarkand. His especial joy was to gaze upon the glorious plain 
hight Soghd, 1 one of the wonders of this world : the land on all sides 
was a delight to the sight, emerald-green and bright, with crystal 
rills like the plains of Paradise ; the gardens bore all manner flowers 
and fruSts and the cities and palaces gladdened the stranger's gaze. 

1 D'Herbelot renders Soghd Samarkand = plain of Samarkand. Hence the old 
" Sogdiana," the famed and classical capital of Mdwarannahr, our modern Transoxiana, 
now known as Samarkand. The Hindi translator has turned "Soghd" into "Sada" and 
gravely notes that "the village appertained to Arabia." He possibly had a dim remem- 
brance of the popular legend which derives "Samarkand " from Shamir or Samar bin 
Afrikus, the Tobba King of Al-Yaman, who lay waste Soghd-city. (" Shamir kand " = 
Shamir destroyed) ; and when rebuilt the place was called by the Arab, corruption 
Samarkand. See Ibn Khallikan ii. 480. Ibn Haukal (Kitab al Mamalik wa al- 
Masalik = Book of Realms and Routes), whose Oriental Geography (xth century) was 
translated by Sir W. Ouseley (London, Oriental Press, 1800), followed by Abu 'l-Fida 
mentions the Himyaritic inscription upon an iron plate over the Kash portal of Samar* 
kand (Appendix No. iii). 

Priitct Ahmad and the Fairy Ptri-Banu. 437 

After some days Prince Ahmad joined a caravan of merchants wend- 
ing Indiawards ; and, when his long and longsome travel was ended, 
he at last reached the caravanserai where his two brothers, Husayn 
and Ali, impatiently awaited his arrival. The three rejoiced with 
exceeding joy to meet once more and fell on one another's necks ; 
thanking Allah who had brought them back safe and sound, hale 
and hearty, after such prolonged and longsome absence. Then 
Prince Husayn, being the eldest, turned to them and said, " Now 
it behoveth us each to recount what hath betided him and an- 
nounce what rare thing he hath brought back and what be the 
virtues thereof ; and I, being the first-born, will be the foremost to 
tell my adventures. I bring with me from Bishangarh, a carpet, 
mean to look at, but such are its properties that should any sit 
thereon and wish in mind to visit country or city, he will at once 
be carried thither in ease and safety although it be distant months, 
nay years of journey. I have paid forty thousand gold pieces to 
its price ; and, after seeing all the wonders of Bishangarh-land, I 
took seat upon my purchase and willed myself at this spot. 
Straightway I found myself here as I wished and have tarried in 
this caravanserai three months awaiting your arrival. The flying 
carpet is with me ; so let him who listeth make trial of it." When 
the senior Prince had made an end of telling his tale, Prince AH 
spake next and said, " O my brother, this carpet which thou hast 
brought is marvel-rare and hath most wondrous gifts ; nor accord- 
ing to thy statement hath any in all the world seen aught to com- 
pare with it." Then bringing forth the Spying Tube, he pursued, 
11 Look ye here, I too have bought for forty thousand Ashrafit 
somewhat whose merits I will now show forth to you/' - And at 
the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

en* of tfce Sfcix f^unfcrrb an* Jporig.nmtf) 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Prince 
Ali enlarged upon the virtues of his purchase and said : "Ye see 

438 Supplemental Nights. 

this ivory pipe ? By means of it man may descry objects hidden 
from his sight and distant from him many a mile. 'Tis truly a 
most wondrous matter and right worthy your inspection, and you 
two may try it an ye will. Place but an eye close to the smaller 
glass and form a wish in mind to see what thing soe'er your soul 
desireth ; and, whether it be near hand or distant many hundreds of 
miles, this ivory will make the object look clear and close to you." 
At these words Prince Husayn took the pipe from Prince AH and, 
applying his eye to one end as he had been directed, then wished 
in his heart to behold the Princess Nur al-NLhar ; ! and the two 
brothers watched him to learn what he would say. Suddenly they 
saw his face change colour and wither as a wilted flower, while in 
his agitation and distress a flood of tears gushed from his eyes ; 
and, ere his brothers recovered from their amazement and could 
enquire the cause of such strangeness, he cried aloud, "Alas! 
and well-away. We have endured toil and travail, and we have 
travelled so far and wide hoping to wed the Princess Nur al-Nihar. 
But 'tis all in vain : I saw her lying on her bed death-sick and 
like to breathe her last and around her stood her women all 
weeping and wailing in the sorest of sorrow. O my brothers, an 
ye would see her once again for the last time, take ye one final 
look through the glass ere she be no more." Hereat Prince All 
seized the Spying Tube and peered through it and found the con- 
dition of the Princess even as his brother Husayn had described ; 
so he presently passed it over to Prince Ahmad, who also looked 
and was certified that the Lady Nur al-Nihar was about to give up 
the ghost. So he said to his elder brothers, " We three are alike 
love-distraught for the Princess and the dearest wish of each one 

1 The wish might have been highly indiscreet and have exposed the wisher to the 
resentment of the two othjer brothers. In parts of Europe it is still the belief of the 
vulgar that men who use telescopes can see even with the naked eye objects which are 
better kept hidden ; and I have heard of troubles in the South of France because the 
villagers would not suffer the secret charms of their women to become as it were the 
public property of the lighthouse employe's. 

Prinet Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 439 

is to win her. Her life is on the ebb, still I can save her and 
make her whole if we hasten to her without stay or delay." So 
saying he pulled from his pocket the Magical Apple and showed 
it to them crying, " This thing is not less in value than either the 
Flying Carpet or the Spying Tube. In Samarkand I bought it for 
forty thousand gold pieces and here is the best opportunity to try 
its virtues. The folk told me that if a sick man hold it to his 
nose, although on the point of death, he will wax at once well and 
hale again: I have myself tested it, and now ye shall see for 
yourselves its marvel-cure when I shall apply it to the case of 
,Nur al-Nihar. Only, let us seek her presence ere she die." 
Quoth Prince Husayn, "This were an easy matter: my carpet 
shall carry us in the twinkling of an eye straight to the bedside of 
our beloved. Do ye without hesitation sit down with me there- 
upon, for there is room sufficient to accommodate us three; we 
shall instantly be carried thither and our servants can follow us," 
Accordingly, the three Princes disposed themselves upon the 
Flying Carpet and each willed in his mind to reach the bedside 
of Nur al-Nihar, when instantly they found themselves within her 
apartment. The handmaids and eunuchs in waiting were terrified 
at the sight and marvelled how these stranger men could have 
entered the chamber ; and, as the Castrates were fain fall upon them, 
brand in hand, they recognised the Princes and drew back still in 
wonderment at their intrusion. Then the brothers rose forthright 
from the Flying Carpet and Prince Ahmad came forwards and 
put the Magical Apple to the nostrils of the lady, who lay stretched 
on the couch in unconscious state ; and as the scent reached her 
brain the sickness left her and the cure was complete. She 
opened wide her eyes and sitting erect upon her bed looked all 
around and chiefly at the Princes as they stood before her ; for she 
felt that she had waxed hale and hearty and as though she awoke 
after the sweetest of slumber. Presently she rose from her couch 
and bade her tire-women dress her the while they related to her 

44O Suppkmental Nights. 

the sudden coming of the three Princes, her uncle's sons, and how 
Prince Ahmad had made her smell something whereby she had 
recovered of her illness. And after she had made the Ablution of 
Health she joyed with exceeding joy to see the Princes and 
returned thanks to them, but chiefly to Prince Ahmad in that he 

had restored her to health and life. And as the morn began 

to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

^fie en* of t&e Sbfx f^untefc anfc Jfiiiittf) jifgitf. 

THEN she said : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 

brothers also were gladdened with exceeding gladness to see the 
Princess Nur al-Nihar recover so suddenly from mortal malady ; 
and, presently taking leave of her, they fared to greet their father. 
Meanwhile the Eunuchs had reported the whole matter to the 
Sultan, and when the Princes came before him he rose and 
embraced them tenderly and kissed them on their foreheads, filled 
with satisfaction to see them again and to hear from them the 
welfare of the Princess, who was dear to him as she had been 
his daughter. Then the three brothers produced each one the 
wondrous- thing he had brought from his wayfare ; and Prince 
Husayn first showed the Flying Carpet which in the twinkling of 
an eye had transported them home from far distant exile and said, 
" For outward show this carpet hath no merit, but inasmuch as it 
possesseth such wondrous virtue, methinks 'tis impossible to find 
in all the world aught that can compare to it for rarity." Next, 
Prince Ali presented to the King his Spying Tube and said, " The 
mirror of Jamshid 1 is as vain and naught beside this pipe, by 
means whereof all things from East to West and from North to 

1 "Jdm-i-Jamshid" is a well worn commonplace in Moslem folk-lore j but com- 
mentators cannot agree whether " Jim " be = a mirror or a cup. In the latter sense it 
would represent the Cyathomantic cup of the Patriarch Joseph and the symbolic bowl of 
Nestor. Jamshfd may be translated either Jam the Bright or the Cup of the Sun : this 
ancient King is the Solomon of the grand old Guebres. 

Prince Akmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 441 

South are made clearly visible to the ken of man." Last of all, 
Prince Ahmad produced the Magical Apple which wondrously 
saved the dear life of Nur al-Nihar and said, " By means of this 
fruit all maladies and grievous distempers are at once made whole." 
Thus each presented his rarity to the Sultan, saying, " O our lord, 
deign examine well these gifts we have brought and do thou 
pronounce which of them all is most excellent and admirable ; so, 
according to thy promise, he amongst us on whom thy choke may 
fall shall marry the Princess Nur al-Nihar." When the King had 
patiently listened to their several claims and had understood how 
each gift took part in restoring health to his niece, for a while he 
dove deep in the sea of thought and then answered, " Should I 
Award the palm of merit to Prince Ahmad, whose Magical Apple 
cured the Princess, then should I deal unfairly by the other two. 
Albeit his rarity restored her to life and health from mortal illness, 
yet say me how had he known of her condition save by the virtue of 
Prince Ali's Spying Tube ? In like manner, but for the Flying Car- 
pet of Prince Husayn, which brought you three hither in a moment's 
space, the Magical Apple would have been of no avail. Where- 
fore 'tis my rede all three had like part and can claim equal merit 
in healing her ; for it were impossible to have made her whole if 
any one thing of the three were wanting ; furthermore all three 
objects are wondrous and marvellous- without one surpassing 
other, nor can I, with aught of reason, assign preference or prece- 
dence to any. My promise was to marry the Lady Nur al-Nihar 
to him who should produce the rarest of rarities, but although 
strange 'tis not less true that all are alike in the one essential 
condition. The difficulty still remaineth and the question is yet 
unsolved, whilst I fain would have the matter settled ere the close 
of day, and without prejudice to any. So needs must I fix upon 
some plan whereby I may be able to adjudge one of you to be the 
winner, and bestow upon him the hand of Princess Nur al-Nihar, 
according to my plighted word ; and thus absolve myself from all 

442 Supplemental Nights. 

responsibility. Now I have resolved upon this course of action; 
to wit, that ye should mount each one his own steed and all of 
you be provided with bow and arrows ; then do ye ride forth to 
the Maydan the hippodrome whither I and my Ministers of State 
and Grandees of the kingdom and Lords of the land will follow you. 
There in my presence ye shall each, turn by turn, shoot a shaft 
with all your might and main ; and he amongst you whose arrow 
shall fly the farthest will be adjudged by me worthiest to win the 
Princess Nur al-Nihar to wife." Accordingly the three Princes, 
who could not gainsay the decision of their sire nor question its 
wisdom and justice, backed their coursers, and each taking his bow 
and arrows made straight for the place appointed. The King 
also, when he had stored the presents in the royal treasury, arrived 
there with his Wazirs and the dignitaries of his realm ; and as soon 
as all was ready, the eldest son and heir, Prince Husayn, essayed his 
strength and skill and shot a shaft far along the level plain. 
After him Prince Ali hent his bow in hand and, discharging an 
arrow in like direction, overshot the first ; and lastly came Prince 
Ahmad's turn. He too aimed at the same end, but such was the 
decree of Destiny, that although the knights and courtiers urged 
on their horses to note where his shaft might strike ground, withal 
they saw no trace thereof and none of them knew if it had sunk 
into the bowels of earth or had flown up to the confines of the 
sky. Some, indeed, there were who with evil mind held that 
Prince Ahmad had not shot any bolt, and that his arrow had 
never left his bow. So at last the King bade no more search be 
made for it and declared himself in favour of Prince Ali and 
adjudged that he should wed the Princess Nur al-Nihar, forasmuch 
as his arrow had outsped that of Prince Husayn. Accordingly, 
in due course the marriage rites and ceremonies were performed 
after the law and ritual of the land with exceeding pomp and 
grandeur. But Prince Husayn would not be present at the bride- 
feast by reason of his disappointment and jealousy, for he had 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri- Ban*. 443 

loved the Lady Nur al-Nihar with a Jove far exceeding that of 
either of his brothers; and he doffed his princely dress and 
donning the garb of a Fakir fared forth to live a hermit's life. 
Prince Ahmad also burned with envy and refused to join the 
wedding-feast : he did not, however, like Prince Husayn, retire to 
a hermitage, but he spent all his days in searching for his shaft to 
find where it had fallen. Now it so fortuned that one morning he 
went again, alone as was his wont, in quest thereof, and starting 
from the stead whence they had shot their shafts reached the 
place where the arrows of Princes Husayn and Ali had been 
found. Then going straight forwards he cast his glances on every 
side over hill and dale to his right and to his left - And as the 
morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

entj of tfje &>fr ^unbrctr an* Jfiftp-first tftgftt. 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Prince 
Ahmad went searching for his shaft over hill and dale when, 
after covering some three parasangs, suddenly he espied it 
lying flat upon a rock. 1 Hereat he marvelled greatly, won- 
dering how the arrow had flown so far, but even more so 
when he went up to it and saw that it had not stuck in the 
ground but appeared to have rebounded and to have fallen flat 
upon a slab of stone. Quoth he to himself, " There must assuredly 
be some mystery in this matter : else how could anyone shoot a 
shaft to such a distance and find it fallen after so strange a 
fashion." Then, threading his way amongst the pointed crags and 
huge boulders, he presently came to a hollow in the ground which 
ended in a subterraneous passage, and after pacing a few paces he 
espied an iron door. He pushed this open with all ease, for that 
it had no bolt, and entering, arrow in hand, he came upon an easy 
slope by which he descended. But whereas he feared to find all 

1 This passage may have suggested to Walter Scott one of bis descriptions io " The 


444 Supplemental Nights. 

pitch-dark, he discovered at some distance a spacious square, a 
widening of the cave, which was lighted on every side with lamps 
and candelabra. Then advancing some fifty cubits or more his 
glance fell upon a vast and handsome palace, and presently there 
issued from within to the portico a lovely maiden lovesome and 
lovable, a fairy-form robed in princely robes and adorned from 
front to foot with the costliest of jewels. She walked with slow 
and stately gait, withal graceful and blandishing, whilst around 
her ranged her attendants like the stars about a moon of the 
fourteenth night. Seeing this vision of beauty, Prince Ahmad 
hastened to salute her with the salam and she returned it ; then 
coming forwards greeted him graciously and said in sweetest 
accents, "Well come and welcome, O Prince Ahmad : I am pleased 
to have sight of thee. How fareth it with thy Highness ancl why 
hast thou tarried so long away from me ? " The King's son 
marvelled greatly to hear her name him by his name ; for that he 
knew not who she was, as they had never seen each other afore- 
time how then came she to have learnt his title and condition ? 
Then kissing ground before her he said, " O my lady, I owe thee 
much of thanks and gratitude for that thou art pleased to welcome 
me with words of cheer in this strange place where I, alone and a 
stranger, durst enter with exceeding hesitation and trepidation. 
But it perplexeth me sorely to think how thou earnest to learn the 
name of thy slave." Quoth she with a smile, " O my lord, come 
hither and let us sit at ease within yon belvedere ; and there I will 
give an answer to thine asking." So they went thither, Prince 
Ahmad following her footsteps ; and on reaching it he was filled 
with wonder to see its vaulted roof of exquisite workmanship and 
adorned with gold and lapis lazuli 1 and paintings and ornaments, 
whose like was nowhere to be found in the world. The lady 
seeing his astonishment said to the Prince, " This mansion is 

1 In the text " Lajawardi," for which see vols. iii. 33, and ix. 190, 

Prince Ahmad and ike Fairy Peri-Banu. 44$ 

nothing beside all my others which now, of my free will, I have 
made thine own ; and when thou seest them thou shalt have just 
cause for wonderment." Then that sylph-like being took seat 
upon a raised daTs and with abundant show of affection seated 
Prince Ahmad by her side. Presently quoth she, "Albeit thou 
know me not, I know thee well, as thou shalt see with surprise 
when I shall tell thee all my tale. But first it bchovcth me 
disclose to thee who I am. In Holy Writ belike thou hast read 
that this world is the dwelling-place not only of men, but also 
of a race hight the Jinn in form likest to mortals. I am the 
only daughter of a Jinn chief of noblest strain and my name is 
Peri-Banu. So marvel not to hear me tell thee who thou art 
and who is the King thy sire and who is Nur al-Nihar, the 
daughter of thine uncle. I have full knowledge of all concern* 
ing thyself and thy kith and kin ; how thou art one of three 
brothers who all and each were daft for love of Princess Nur al- 
Nihar and strave to win her from one another to wife. Further- 
more thy sire deemed it best to send you all far and wide over 
foreign lands, and thou faredest to far Samarkand and broughtest 
back a Magical Apple made with rare art and mystery which 
thou boughtest for forty thousand Ashrafis ; then by means whereof 
thou madest the Princess thy lady-love whole of a grievous malady, 
whilst Prince I lusayn, thine elder brother, bought for the same 
sum of money a Flying Carpet at Bishangarh, and Prince Ali 
also brought home a Spying Tube from Shiraz-city. Let this 
suffice to show thee that naught is hidden from me of all thy 
case; and now do thou tell me in very truth whom dost thou 
admire the more, for beauty and loveliness, me or the lady 
Nur al-Nihar thy brother's wife ? My heart longeth for thee 
with excessive longing and desireth that we may be married 
and enjoy the pleasures of life and the joyance of love. So 
say me, art thou also willing to wed me, or pinest thou in 
preference for the daughter of thine uncle ? In the fulness of ray 

446 Supplemented Nights., 

affection for thee I stood by thy side unseen during the archery- 
meeting upon the plain of trial, and when thou shortest thy shaft 
I knew that it would fall far short of Prince AliV, so I hent it 
in hand ere it touched ground and carried it away from sight, 
and striking it upon the iron door caused it rebound and lie flat 
upon the rock where thou didst find it. And ever since that day I 
have been sitting in expectancy, wotting well that thou wouldst 
search for it until thou find it, and by such means I was certified of 
bringing thee hither to me." Thus spake the beautiful maiden 
Peri-Banu who with eyes full of love-longing looked up at Prince 
Ahmad ; and then with modest shame bent low her brow and 
averted her glance. -- And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad 
held her peace till 

of t&e S>fr JguntortJ anfc 

THEN said she : -- 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that when 
Prince Ahmad heard these words of Peri-Banu he rejoiced with 
joy exceeding, and said to himself; "The Princess Nur al-Nihar 
is not within my power to win, and Peri-Banu doth outvie her 
in comeliness of favbur and in loveliness of form and in grace- 
fulness of gait" In short so charmed was he and captivated 
that he clean forgot his love for his cousin ; and, noting that the 
heart of his new enchantress inclined towards him, he replied, 
" O my lady, O fairest of the fair, naught else do I desire save 
that I may serve thee and do thy bidding all my life long. But 
I am of human and thou of non-human birth. Thy friends and 
family, kith and kin, will haply be displeased with thee an thou unite 
with me in such union." But she made answer, ' I have full sanc- 
tion of my parents to marry as I list and whomsoever I may prefer. 
Thou sayest that thou wilt be my servant, nay, rather be thou 
my lord and master; for I myself and my life and all my good are 

1 In Galland and the H.V. "Prince Husayn's." 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Ban*. 447 

very thine, and I shall ever be thy bondswoman. Consent now, 
I beseech thee, to accept me for thy wife : my heart doth tell me 
thou wilt not refuse my request." Then Peri-Banu added, " I have 
told thee already that in this matter I act with fullest authority. 
Besides all this there is a custom and immemorial usage with us 
fairy-folk that, when we maidens come to marriageable age and 
years of understanding, each one may wed, according the dictates 
of her heart, the person that pleaseth her most and whom she 
judgeth likely to make her days happy* Thus wife and husband 
live with each other all their lives in harmony and happiness. But 
if a girl be given away in marriage by the parents, according to 
their choice and not hers, and she be mated to a helpmate unmeet 
for her, because ill-shapen or ill-conditioned or unfit to win her 
affection, then are they twain likely to be at variance each with 
other for the rest of their days ; and endless troubles result to them 
from such ill-sorted union. Nor are we bound by another law 
which bindeth modest virgins of the race of Adam ; for we freely 
announce our preference to those we love, nor must we wait and 
pine to be wooed and won." When Prince Ahmad heard these 
words of answer, he rejoiced with exceeding joy and stooping dowrr 
essayed to kiss the skirt of her garment, but she prevented him, 
and in lieu of her hem gave him her hand. The Prince clasped it 
with rapture and according to the custom of that place, he kissed 
it and placed it to his breast and upon his eyes. Hereat quoth 
the Fairy, smiling a charming smile, " With my hand locked in 
thine plight me thy troth even as I pledge my faith to thee, that I 
will alway true and loyal be, nor ever prove faithless or fail of con- 
stancy." And quoth the Prince, " O loveliest of beings, O dearling 
of my soul, thinkest thou that I can ever become a traitor to my 
own heart, I who love thee to distraction and dedicate to thee my 
body and my sprite ; to thee who art my queen, the very empress 
of me ? Freely I give myself to thee, do thou with me whatso 
thou wilt" Hereupon Peri-Banu said to Prince Ahmad, " Thou 

448 Supplemental Nights. 

art my husband and I am thy wife. 1 This solemn promise made 
between thee and me standeth in stead of marriage-contract : no 
need have we of Kazi, for with us all other forms and ceremonies 
are superfluous and of no avail. Anon I will show thee the cham- 
ber where we shall pass the bride-night ; and methinks thou wilt 
admire it and confess that there is none like thereto in the whole 
world of men." Presently her handmaidens spread the table and 
served up dishes of various kinds, and the finest wines in flagons 
and goblets of gold dubbed with jewels. So they twain sat at 
meat and ate and drank their sufficiency. Then Peri-Banu took 
Prince Ahmad by the hand and led him to her private chamber 
wherein she slept ; and he stood upon the threshold amazed to see 
its magnificence and the heaps of gems and precious stones which 
dazed his sight, till recovering himself he cried, " Methinks there 
is not in the universe a room so splendid and decked with costly 
furniture and gemmed articles such as this. Quoth Peri-Banu, 
" An thou so admire and praise this palace what wilt thou say when 
sighting the mansions and castles of my sire the Jann-King ? 
Haply too when thou shalt behold my garden thou wilt be filled 
with wonder and delight ; but now 'tis over late to lead thee thither 
and night approacheth." Then she ushered Prince Ahmad into 
another room where the supper had been spread, and the splendour 
of this saloon yielded in naught to any of the others ; nay, rather it 
was the more gorgeous and dazzling. Hundreds of wax candles 
set in candelabra of the finest amber 2 and the purest crystal, ranged 
on all sides, rained floods of light, whilst golden flowerpots and 
vessels of finest workmanship and priceless worth, of lovely shapes 

and wondrous art, adorned the niches and the walls. And as 

the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

1 This is the " Gandharba-Iagana " (fairy wedding) of the Hindus ; a marriage which 
lacked only the normal ceremonies. For the Gandharbas = heavenly choristers sec 
Moor's * Hindu Pantheon," p. 237, etc. 

2 " Perfumed with amber" (-gris?) says Gailand. 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 449 

enH of tfje Sbfx JQun&trti anU Jfiftp^tfjirtJ 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that tongue 
of man can never describe the magnificence of that room in which 
bands of virgin Peris, loveliest of forms and fairest of features, 
garbed in choicest garments played on sweet-toned instruments of 
mirth and merriment or sang lays of amorous significance to 
strains of heart-bewitching music. Then they twain, to wit the 
bride and bridegroom sat down at meat, ever and anon delaying 
to indulge in toyings and bashful love-play and chaste caresses. 
Peri-Banu with her own hands passed the choicest mouthfuls to 
Prince Ahmad and made him taste of each dish and dainty, telling 
him their names and whereof they were composed. But how 
shall I, O auspicious King Shahryar, avail to give thee any notion 
of those Jinn-made dishes or to describe with due meed of praise 
the delicious flavour of meats such as no mortal ever tasted or 
ever beheld ? Then, when both had supped, they drank the 
choicest wines, and ate with relish sweet conserves and dry fruits 
and a dessert of various delicacies. At length, when they had 
their requirement of eating and drinking, they retired into another 
room which contained a raised dats of the grandest, bedecked with 
gold-purfled cushions and pillows wrought with seed-pearl and 
Achsemenian tapestries, whereupon they took seat side by side 
for converse and solace. Then came in a troop of Jinns and 
fairies who danced and sang before them with wondrous grace and 
it ; and this pretty show pleased Peri-Banu and Prince Ahmad, 
who watched the sports and displays with ever-renewed delight. 
At last the newly wedded couple rose and retired, weary of 
revelry, to another chamber, wherein they found that the slaves 
had dispread the genial bed, whose frame was gold studded with 
jewels and whose furniture was of satin and sendal flowered with 
the rarest embroidery. Here the guest* who attended ai the 
marriage festival and the handmaids of the palace, ranged in two 

4.50 Supplemental Nights. 

lines, hailed the bride and bridegroom as they went within ; and 
then, craving dismissal, they all departed leaving them to take 
their joyance in bed. On such wise the marriage-festival and 
nuptial merry-makings were kept up day after day, with new 
dishes and novel sports, novel dances and new music ; and, had 
Prince Ahmad lived a thousand years with mortal kind, never 
could he have seen such revels or heard such strains or enjoyed 
such love-liesse. Thus six months soon passed in the Fairy-land 
beside Peri-Banu, whom he loved with a love so fond that he would 
not lose her from his sight for a moment's space ; but would feel 
restless and ill-at-ease whenas he ceased to look upon her. In like 
manner Peri-Banu was fulfilled with affection for him and strove 
to please her bridegroom more and more every moment by new 
arts of dalliance and fresh appliances of pleasure, until so absorbing 
waxed his passion for her that the thought of home and kindred, 
kith and kin, faded from his thoughts and fled his mind. But after 
a time his memory awoke from slumber and at times he found 
himself longing to look upon his father, albeit well did he wot that 
it were impossible to find out how the far one fared unless he went 
himself to visit him. So one day quoth he to Peri-Banu, " An it 
be thy pleasure, I pray thee give me thy command that I may 
leave thee for a few days to see my sire, who doubtless grieveth at 
my long absence and suffered! all the sorrows of separation from 
his son." Peri-Banu, hearing these words was dismayed with 
sore dismay, for that she thought within herself that this was only 
an excuse whereby he might escape and leave her after enjoy- 
ment and possession had made her love pall upon the palate of 
his mind. So quoth she in reply, " Hast thou forgotten thy 
vows and thy plighted troth, that thou wishest to leave me now ? 
Have love and longing ceased to stir thee, whilst my heart always 
throbbeth in raptures as it hath ever done at the very thought of 
thee ?" Replied the Prince, "O dearling of my soul, my queen, 
my empress, what be these doubts that haunt thy mind, and why 

Prince Ahmad and tke Fairy Peri-Banu. 45 1 

such sad misgivings and sorrowful words ? I know full well that the 
love of thee and thine affection me-wards are even as thou sayest ; 
and did I not acknowledge this truth or did I prove unthankful 
or fail to regard thee with a passion as warm and deep, as tender 
and as true as thine own, I were indeed an ingrate and a traitor of 
the darkest dye. Far be it from me to desire severance from thee 
nor hath any thought of leaving thee never to return at any time 
crossed my mind. But my father is now an old man well shotten 
in years and he is sore grieved in mind at this long separation 
from his youngest son. If thou wilt deign command, I would fain 
go visit him and with all haste return to thine arms ; yet I would 
not do aught in this matter against thy will ; and such is my fond 
affection for thee that I would fain be at all hours of the day and 
watches of the night by thy side nor leave thee for a moment of 
time." Peri-Banu was somewhat comforted by this speech ; and 
from his looks, words and acts she was certified that Prince Ahmad 
really loved her with fondest love and that his heart was true as 
steel to her as was his tongue. Whereupon she granted him leave 
and liberty to set forth and see his sire, whilst at the same time she 
gave him strict commandment not to tarry long with his kith and 
kin. Hearken now, O auspicious King Shahryar, to what befel 
the Sultan of Hindostan and how it fared with him after the 

marriage of Prince Ali to Princess Nur al-Nihar. And as the 

morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

&e cnfc of tfjc &f* P-lunbrrt an* jFiftp-fourtb Nfgfr. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that not 

seeing Prince Husayn and Prince Ahmad for the space of many 
days the Sultan waxed exceeding sad and heavy-hearted, and one 
morning after Darbdr, 1 asked his Wazirs and Ministers what had 
betided them and where they were. Hereto the councillors made 

1 The Hind term for the royal levfe, as " Selam " is the Fenian. 

452 Supplemental Nights. 

answer saying, "O our lord, and shadow of Allah upon earth, thine 
eldest son and fruit of thy vitals and heir apparent to thine Empire 
the Prince Husayn, in his disappointment and jealousy and bitter 
grief hath doffed his royal robes to become a hermit, a devotee, 
renouncing all worldly lusts and gusts. Prince Ahmad thy third 
son also in high dudgeon hath left the city ; and of him none 
loioweth aught, whither he hath fled or what hath befallen him." 
The King was sore distressed and bade them write without stay or 
delay and forthright despatch firmans and commands to all the 
Nabobs and Governors of the provinces, with strict injunctions to 
make straight search for Prince Ahmad and to send him to his sire 
the moment he was found. But, albeit the commandments were 
carried out to the letter and all the seekers used the greatest dili- 
gence none came upon any trace of him. Then, with increased 
sadness of heart, the Sultan ordered his Grand Wazir to go in 
quest of the fugitive and the Minister replied, " Upon my head be 
it and mine eyes ! Thy servant hath already caused most careful 
research to be made in every quarter, but not the smallest clue 
hath yet come to hand : and this matter troubleth me the more for 
that he was dear to me as a son." The Ministers and Grandees 
now understood that the King was overwhelmed with woe, tearful- 
eyed and heavy-hearted by reason of the loss of Prince Ahmad ; 
whereupon bethought the Grand Wazir of a certain witch famed 
for the Black Art who could conjure down the stars from heaven ; 
and who was a noted dweller in the capital. So going to the 
Sultan he spake highly of her skill in knowledge of the abstruse, 1 
saying " Let the King, I pray thee, send for this sorceress and 
enquire of her concerning his lost son." And the King replied, 
<c Tis well said : let her be brought hither and haply she shall give 

1 Arab. "'Ilm al-Ghayb" = the Science of Hidden Things which, says the Hadis, 
belongeth only to the Lord. Yet amongst Moslems, as with other faiths, the instinctive 
longing to pry into the Future has produced a host of pseudo-sciences, Geomancy, 
Astrology, Prophecy and others which serve only to prove that such knowledge, in the 
pretest condition of human nature, is absolutely unattainable. 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu* 453 

me tidings of the Prince and how he fareth." So they fetched the 
Sorceress and set her before the Sultan, who said, " O my good 
woman, I would have thee know that ever since the marriage of 
Prince AH with the Lady Nur al-Nihar, my youngest son Prince 
Ahmad, 1 who was disappointed in her love, hath disappeared from 
our sight and no man knoweth aught of him. Do thou forthright 
apply thy magical craft and tell me only this : Is he yet alive or 
is he dead ? An he live I would learn where is he and how fareth 
he ; moreover, I would ask, Is it written in my book of Destiny 
that I shall see him yet again ? " To this the Witch made reply, 
" O Lord of the Age and ruler of the times and tide, 'tis not pos- 
sible for me at once to answer all these questions which belong 
to the knowledge of Hidden Things ; but, if thy Highness deign 
grant me one day of grace, I will consult my books of gramarye and 
on the morrow will give thee a sufficient reply and a satisfactory." 
The Sultan to this assented, saying, " An thou can give me 
detailed and adequate answer, and set my mind at ease after this 
sorrow, thou shalt have an exceeding great reward and I will 
honour thee with highmost honour." Next day the Sorceress, 
accompanied by the Grand Wazir, craved permission to appear 
before the presence, and when it was granted came forward and 
said, " I have made ample investigation by my art and mystery 
and I have assured myself that Prince Ahmad is yet in the land 
of the living. Be not therefore uneasy in thy mind on his account ; 
but at present, save this only, naught else can I discover regarding 
him, nor can I say for sure where he be or how he is to be found/ 1 
At these words the Sultan took comfort, and hope sprang up within 
his breast that he should see his son again ere he diedr Now 
return we to the story of Prince Ahmad. Whenas Peri-Banu 
understood that he was bent upon visiting his sire and she waft 

1 In folk-lore and fairy tales (he youngest son of mostly three brothers is generally 
Fortune's favourite : at times also he is the fool or the unlucky oot of the family, 
Cinderella being his eounterpftrt (Mi. Qonstoo, i. 

454 Supplemental Nights. 

convinced that his love her-wards remained firm and steadfast as 
before, she took thought and determined that it would ill become 
her to refuse him leave and liberty for such purpose ; so she again 
pondered the matter in her mind and debated with herself for many 
an hour till at length, one day of the days, she turned to her 
husband and said, " Albeit my heart consenteth not to part from 
thee for a moment or to lose sight of thee for a single instant, still 
inasmuch as thou hast ofttimes made entreaty of me and hast 
shown thyself so solicitous to see thy sire, I will no longer baffle 
thy wish. But this my favour will depend upon one condition ; 
otherwise I will never grant thy petition and give thee such per- 
mission. Swear to me the most binding of oaths that thou wilt 
haste thee back hither with all possible speed, and thou wilt not 
by long absence cause me yearning grief and anxious waiting for 
thy safe return to me." Prince Ahmad, well pleased to win his 
wish, thanked her saying, " O my beloved, fear not for me after any 
fashion and rest assured I will come back to thee with all haste as 
soon as I shall have seen my sire ; and life hath no charms for 
me away from thy presence. Although I must needs be severed 
from thee for a few days, yet will my heart ever turn to thee and 
to thee only." These words of Prince Ahmad gladdened the 
heart of Peri-Banu and drove away the darksome doubts and 
mysterious misgivings which ever haunted her nightly dreams and 
her daily musings. - And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad 
held her peace till 

n& of tfic &fx f^untjrrti antf 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Peri- 
Banu gladdened by these premises addressed her husband, Prince 
Ahmad, " So now, as soon as thy heart desireth, go thou and pay 
thy respects to thy sire ; but ere thou set out I would charge thee 
with one charge and look that on no wise thou forget my rede and 
my counsel. Speak not to any a single word of this thy marriage, 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 455 

nor of the strange sights thou hast seen and the wonders thou hast 
witnessed ; but keep them carefully concealed from thy father and 
thy brethren and from thy kith and kin, one and all. This only 
shalt thou tell thy sire, so his mind may be set at ease, that thou art 
buxom and happy ; also that thou hast returned home for a while 
only with the object of seeing him and becoming assured of his 
welfare." Then she gave orders to her people, bidding them make 
ready for the journey without delay ; and when all things were pre- 
pared she appointed twenty horsemen, armed cap-a-pie and fully 
accoutred, to accompany her husband, and gave him a horse of 
perfect form and proportions, swift as the blinding leven or the 
rushing wind; and its housings and furniture were bedeckt with 
precious ores and studded with jewels. Then she fell on his neck 
and they embraced with warmest love; and as the twain bade 
adieu, Prince Ahmad, to set her mind at rest, renewed his protesta- 
tions and sware to her again his solemn oath. Then mounting his 
horse and followed by his suite (all Jinn-born cavaliers) he set forth 
with mighty pomp and circumstance, and riding diligently he soon 
reached his father's capital. Here he was received with loud 
acclamations, the like of which had never been known in the land. 
The Ministers and Officers of State, the citizens and the Ryots all 
rejoiced with exceeding joy to see him once more, and the folk left 
their work and with blessings and low obeisances joined the 
cavalcade ; and, crowding around him in every side, escorted him 
to the palace-gates. When the Prince reached the threshold he 
dismounted and, entering the audience-hall, fell at his father's feet 
and kissed them in a transport of filial affection. The Sultan, well 
nigh distraught for delight at the unexpected sight of Prince Ahmad, 
rose from his throne and threw himself upon his son's neck weeping 
for very joy and kissed his forehead saying, " O dear my child, in 
despair at the loss of the Lady Nur al-Nihar thou didst suddenly 
fly from thy home, and, despite all research, nor trace nor sign of 
thee was to be found however sedulously we sought thee ; and I, 

456 Supplemental Nights. 

distracted at thy disappearance, am reduced to this condition in 
which thou seest me. Where hast thou been this long while, and 
how hast thou lived all this time ?" Replied Prince Ahmad, " Tis 
true, O my lord the King, that I was down-hearted and distressed 
to see Prince Ali gain the hand of my cousin, but that is not the 
whole cause of my absence. Thou mayest remember how, when 
we three brothers rode at thy command to yonder plain for a trial 
of archery, my shaft, albeit the place was large and flat, disappeared 
from sight and none could find where it had fallen. Now so it 
fortuned that one day in sore heaviness of mind I fared forth alone 
and unaccompanied to examine the ground thereabout and try if 
haply I could find my arrow. But when I reached the spot where 
the. shafts of my brothers, Princes Husayn and Ali, had been picked 
up, I made search in all directions, right and left, before and behind, 
thinking that thereabouts mine also might come to hand ; but all 
my trouble was in vain : I found neither shaft nor aught else. So 
walking onwards in obstinate research, I went a long way, and 
at last despairing, I would have given up the quest, for full well I 
knew that my bow could not have carried so far, and indeed that 
'twere impossible for any marksman to have driven bolt or pile to 
such distance, when suddenly I espied it lying flat upon a rock 
some four parasangs 1 distant from this place." The Sultan 
marvelled with much marvel at his words and the Prince presently 
resumed, " So when I picked up the arrow, O my lord, and con- 
sidered it closely I knew it for the very one I had shot, but admired 
in my mind how it had come to fly so far, and I doubted not but 
that there was a somewhat mysterious about the matter. While I 
thus reflected I came upon the place where I have sojourned ever 
since that day in perfect solace and happiness. I may not tell thee 

1 The parasang (Gr. Trapao-dyy^s), which Ibn Khali, (iii. 315) reduces to three miles, 
has been derived wildly enough from Fars or Pars (Persia proper) sang = (mile) stone. 
Chardin supports the etymology, "because leagues are marked out with great tall stones 
in the Eas" as well as the West, e.g. ad primam (vel secundam) lapidem." 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 457 

more of my tale than this ; for I came only to ease thy mind on 
my account, and now I pray thee deign grant me thy supreme 
permission that I return forthright to my home of delights. From 
time to time I will not cease to wait upon thee and to enquire of 
thy welfare with all the affection of a son." Replied the King, 
" O my child, the sight of thee hath gladdened mine eyes ; and I 
am now satisfied ; and not unwillingly I give thee leave to go, since 
thou art happy in some place so near hand ; but shouldst thou at 
any time delay thy coming hither, say me, how shall I be able to 
get tidings of thy good health and welfare ?" And quoth Prince 
Ahmad, " O my lord the King, that which thou requirest of me is 
part of my secret and this must remain deep hidden in my breast : 
as I said before, I may not discover it to thee nor say aught that 
might lead to its discovery. However, be not uneasy in thy soul, for 
I will appear before thee full many a time and haply I may irk thee 
with continual coming." " O my son," rejoined the Sultan, " I 
would not learn thy secret an thou would keep it from me, but 
there is one only thing I desire of thee, which is, that ever and 
anon I may be assured of thine enduring health and happiness. 
Thou hast my full permission to hie thee home, but forget not at least 
once a month to come and see me even as now thou dost, lest such 
forgetfulness cause me anxiety and trouble, cark and care." So 
Prince Ahmad tarried with his father three days full-told, but never 
for a moment did the memory of the Lady Peri-Banu fade from 
his mind ; and on the fourth day he mounted horse and returned 
with the same pomp and pageantry wherewith he came. - And 
as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

en& of tbc &tx JQun&rrD anfc Jpiftp^ixtf) Xiotjt. 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Peri- 
Banu joyed with exceeding joy at the sight of Prince Ahmad as he 
returned to his home ; and it seemed to her as though they had 

458 Supplemental Nights. 

been parted for three hundred years : such is love that moments of 
separation are longsome and weary as twelvemonths. The Prince 
offered much of excuses for his short absence and his words de- 
lighted Peri-Banu yet the more. So these twain, lover and beloved, 
passed the time in perfect happiness, taking their pleasure one with 
other. Thus a month went by and Prince Ahmad never once 
mentioned the name of his sire nor expressed a wish to go visit 
nim according to his promise. Noting this change, the Lady Peri- 
Banu said to him one day, " Thou toldest me aforetime that once 
in the beginning of each month thou wouldst fare forth and travel 
to thy father's court and learn news of his welfare : why then 
neglectest thou so to do, seeing that he will be distressed and 
anxiously expecting thee ?" Replied Prince Ahmad, " 'Tis even as 
thou sayest, but, awaiting thy command and thy permission, I 
have forborne to propose the journey to thee." And she made 
answer, " Let thy faring and thy returning rest not on my giving 
thee liberty of leave. At the beginning of each month as it cometh 
round, do thou ride forth, and from this time forwards thou hast no 
need to ask permission of me. Stay with thy sire three days full- 
told and on the fourth come back to me without fail." Accordingly, 
on the next day betimes in the morning Prince Ahmad took his 
departure and as aforetime rode forth with abundant pomp and 
parade and repaired to the palace of the Sultan his sire, to whom 
he made his obeisance. On like manner continued he to do each 
month with a suite of horsemen larger and more brilliant than 
before, whilst he himself was more splendidly mounted and equipped. 
And whenever the Crescent appeared in the Western sky he fondly 
farewelled his wife and paid his visit to the King, with whom he 
tarried three whole days, and on the fourth returned to dwell with 
Peri-Banu. But, as each and every time he went, his equipage was 
greater and grander than the last, at length one of the Wazirs, a 
favourite and cup-companion of the King, was filled with wonder- 
ment and jealousy to see Prince Ahmad appear at the palace with 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 459 

such opulence and magnificence. So he said in himself, " None can 
tell whence cometh this Prince, and by what means he hath obtained 
so splendid a suite." Then of his envy and malice that Wazir fell 
to plying the King with deceitful words and said, " O my liege lord 
and mighty sovran, it ill becometh thee to be thus heedless of Prince 
Ahmad's proceedings. Seest thou not how day after day his retinue 
increaseth in numbers and puissance? What an he should plot 
against thee and cast thee into prison, and take from thee the reins 
of the realm ? Right.well thou wottest that inasmuch as thou didst 
wed Prince AH to the Lady Nur al-Nihar thou provokedest the wrath 
of Prince Husayn and Prince Ahmad ; so that one of them in the 
bitterness of his soul renounced the pomps and vanities of this 
world and hath become a Fakir, whilst the other, to wit ; Prince 
Ahmad, appeareth before thy presence in such inordinate power and 
majesty. Doubtless they both seek their revenge ; and, having gotten 
thee into their power, the twain will deal treacherously with thee. 
So I would have thee beware, and again I say beware ; and seize the 
forelock of opportunity ere it be too late ; for the wise have said : 

Thou canst bar a spring with a sod of clay o But when grown 'twill bear a big 
host away. 

Thus spake that malicious Wazir ; and presently he resumed, " Thou 
knowest also that when Prince Ahmad would end his three days' 
visits he never asketh thy leave nor farewelleth'thee nor biddeth adieu 
to any one of his family. Such conduct is the beginning of rebellion 
and proveth him to be rancorous of heart But 'tis for thee in thy 
wisdom to decide." These words sank deep in the heart of the 
simple-minded Sultan and grew a crop of the direst suspicions. 
He presently thought within himself, " Who knoweth the mind and 
designs of Prince Ahmad, whether they be dutiful or undutiful 
towards me ? Haply he may be plotting vengeance ; so it besitteth 
me to make enquiries concerning him, to discover where he dwellcth 
and by what means he hath attained to such puissance and opulence. 11 

460 Supplemental Nights. 

Filled with these jealous thoughts, he sent in private one day, unbe- 
known to the Grand Wazir who would at all times befriend Prince 
Ahmad, to summon the Witch ; and, admitting her by a secret postern 
to his private chamber, asked of her saying, " Thou didst aforetime 
learn by thy magical art that Prince Ahmad was alive and didst 
bring me tidings of him. I am beholden to thee for this good office, 
and now I would desire of thee to make further quest into his case 
and ease my mind, which is sore disturbed. Albeit my son still 
liveth and cometh to visit me every month, yet am I clean ignorant 
of the place wherein he dwelleth and whence he setteth out to see 
me ; for that he keepeth the matter close hidden from his sire. Go 
thou forthright and privily, without the knowledge of any, my Wazirs 
and Nabobs, my courtiers and my household ; and make thou 
diligent research and with all haste bring me word whereabouts he 
liveth. He now sojourneth here upon his wonted visit ; and, on 
the fourth day, without leave-taking or mention of departure to me 
or to any of the Ministers and Officers, he will summon his suite 
and mount his steed ; then will he ride to some little distance hence 
and suddenly disappear. Do thou without stay or delay forego 
him on the path and lie perdue in some convenient hollow hard by 
the road whence thou mayest learn where he hometh ; then quickly 
brfng me tidings thereof." Accordingly, the Sorceress departed 
the presence of the King ; and, after walking over the four parasangs, 
she hid herself within a hollow of the rocks hard by the place where 
Prince Ahmad had found his arrow, and there awaited his arrival. 
Early on the morrow the Prince, as was his wont, set out upon his 
journey without taking leave of his sire or farewelling any of the 
Ministers. So when they drew nigh, the Sorceress caught sight of 
the Prince and of the retinue that rode before and beside him ; and 
she saw them enter a hollow way which forked into a many of by- 
ways ; and so steep and dangerous were the cliffs and boulders 
about the track that hardly could a footman safely pace that path, 
Seeing this the Sorceress bethought her that it must surely lead to 

Pritue Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 46 1 

some cavern or haply to a subterraneous passage, or to a souterrain 
the abode of Jinns and fairies ; when suddenly the Prince and all 
his suite vanished from her view. So she crept out of the hiding-place 
wherein she had ensconced herself and wandered far and wide seeking, 
as diligently as she was able, but never finding the subterraneous 
passage nor yet could she discern the iron door which Prince Ahmad 
had espied, for none of human flesh and blood had power to see this 
save he alone to whom it was made visible by the Fairy Peri-Banu ; 
furthermore it was ever concealed from the prying eyes of woman- 
kind. Then said the Sorceress to herself, " This toil and moil have 
I undertaken to no purpose ; yea, verily, I have failed to find out 
that wherefor I came." So she went forthright back to the Sultan 
and reported to him all that had betidcd her, how she had lain in 
wait amid the cliffs and boulders and had seen the Prince and suite 
ride up the most perilous of paths and, having entered a hollow way, 
disappear in an eye-twinkling from her sight. And she ended by 
saying, " Albeit I strove my utmost to find out the spot wherein 
the Prince abideth, yet could I on no wise succeed ; and I pray thy 
Highness may grant me time to search further into the matter and 
to find out this mystery which by skill and caution on my part shall 
not long abide concealed." Answered the Sultan, " Be it as thou 
wilt : I grant thee leisure to make enquiry and after a time I shall 

await thy return hither." And as the morn began to dawn 

Shahrazad held her peace till 

f)e raft of t(e Sbix IQunUreK an* jpiftp^ebcni!) iligfct 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that more- 
over the King largessed the Witch with a diamond of large size 
and of great price, saying, " Take this stone to guerdon for thy 
trouble and travail and in earnest of future favours ; so, when thou 
shalt return and bring me word that thou hast searched and found 
out the secret, thou shalt have a Bakhshish of far greater worth and 

462 Supplemental Nights. 

I will make thy heart rejoice with choicest joy and honour thee 
with highmost honour." So the Sorceress looked forwards to the 
coming of the Prince, for well she knew that at the sight of each 
crescent he rode home to visit his sire and was bound to abide 
with him three days, even as the Lady Peri-Banu had per- 
mitted and had enjoined him. Now when the moon had waxed 
and waned, on the day before the Prince would leave home upon 
his monthly visit, the Witch betook her to the rocks and sat beside 
the place whence she imagined he would issue forth ; and next 
morning early he and his suite, composed of many a mounted 
knight with his esquire a-foot, who now always accompanied him 
in increasing numbers, rode forth gallantly through the iron door- 
way and passed hard by the place where she lay in wait for him. 
The Sorceress crouched low upon the ground in her tattered rags ; 
and, seeing a heap by his way, the Prince at first supposed that a 
slice of stone had fallen from the rocks across his path. But as he 
drew nigh she fell to weeping and wailing with might and main as 
though in sore dolour and distress, and she ceased not to crave his 
countenance and assistance with increase of tears and lamenta* 
tions. The Prince seeing her sore sorrow had pity on her, and 
reining in his horse, asked her what she had to require of him and 
what was the cause of her cries and lamentations. At this the 
cunning crone but cried the more, and the Prince was affected with 
compassion still livelier at seeing her tears and hearing her broken, 
feeble words. So when the Sorceress perceived that Prince Ahmad 
had ruth on her and would fain show favour to her, she heaved 
a heavy sigh and in woeful tones, mingled with moans and groans, 
addressed him in these- false words, withal holding the hem of his 
garment and at times stopping as if convulsed with pain, " O my 
lord and lord of all loveliness, as I was journeying from my home 
in yonder city upon an errand to such a place, behold, when I came 
thus far upon my way> suddenly a hot fit of fever seized me and a 
shivering and a trembling, so that I lost all strength and fell down 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 463 

helpless as thou seest me ; and still no power have I in hand or 
foot to rise from the ground and to return to my place." Replied 
the Prince, "Alas, O good woman, there is no house at hand where 
thou mayest go and be fitly tended and tendered. Howbeit I know a 
stead whither, an thou wilt, I can convey thee and where by care 
and kindness thou shalt (Inshallah !) soon recover of thy complaint. 
Come then with me as best thou canst" With loud moans and 
groans the Witch made answer, " So weak am I in every limb 
and helpless that I can by no means rise off the ground or move 
save with the help of some friendly hand." The Prince then bade 
one of his horsemen lift up the feeble and ailing old woman and 
set her upon his steed ; and the cavalier did his lord's bidding forth- 
right and mounted her astraddle upon the crupper of his courser : 
then, Prince Ahmad rode back with her and entering by the iron 
door carried her to his apartment and sent for Peri-Banu. His 
wife hurriedly coming forth to the Prince asked him in her flurry, 
" Is all well and wherefore hast thou come back and what wouldst 
thou that thou hast sent for me ? " Prince Ahmad then told her 
of the old woman who was healthless and helpless, adding, " Scarce 
had I set out on my journey when I espied this ancient dame lying 
hard by the roadside, suffering and in sore distress. My heart felt 
pity for her to see her in such case and constrained me to bring her 
hither as I could not leave her to die among the rocks ; and I 
pray thee of thy bounty take her in and give her medicines that 
she may soon be made whole of this her malady. An thou wilt 
show this favour I shall not cease to thank thee and be beholden 

to thee." And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her, 

peace till 

Efje en* of tfce ftfx )$unim& an* JFtftp-rigbtb Nfg&t. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Peri- 

Banu looked at the old woman and charged a twain of her hand- 

464 Supplemental Nights. 

maidens that they carry her into a room apart and tend her with 
the tenderest care and the uttermost of diligence. The atten- 
dants did as she bade them and transported the Sorceress to the 
place she had designed. Then Peri-Banu addressed Prince Ahmad 
saying, " O my lord, I am pleased to see thy pitiful kindness 
towards this ancient dame, and I surely will look to her case even 
as thou hast enjoined me ; but my heart misgiveth me and much I 
fear some evil will result from thy goodness. This woman is not 
so ill as she doth make believe, but practiseth deceit upon thee and 
I ween that some enemy or envier hath plotted a plot against me 
and thee. Howbeit go now in peace upon thy journey." The 
Prince, who on no wise took to heart the words of his wife, pre- 
sently replied to her, " O my lady, Almighty Allah forfend thee 
from all offence ! With thee to help and guard me I fear naught of 
ill : I know of no foeman who would compass my destruction, 
for I bear no grudge against any living being, and I foresee no evil 
at the hands of man or Jann." Thereupon the Prince again took 
leave of Peri-Banu and repaired with his attendants to the palace of 
his sire who, by reason of the malice of his crafty Minister, was 
inwardly afraid to see his son ; but not the less he welcomed him 
with great outward show of love and affection. Meanwhile the two 
fairy handmaidens, to whom Peri-Banu had given charge of the 
Witch, bore her away to a spacious room splendidly furnished ; and 
laid her on a bed having a mattress of satin and a brocaded cover- 
let. Then one of them sat by her side whilst the other with all 
speed fetched, in a cup of porcelain, an essence which was a sove- 
reign draught for ague and fever. Presently they raised her up and 
seated her on the couch saying, " Drain thou this drink. It is the 
water of the Lions' Fount and whoso tasteth of the same is forth- 
with made whole of what disease soever he hath." The Sorceress 
took the cup with great difficulty and after swallowing the con- 
tents lay back on the bed ; and the handmaidens spread the quilt 
over her saying, " Now rest awhile and thou shalt soon feel the 

PHnct Ahmad and thi Fairy Peri- Ban*. 465 

virtues of this medicine." Then they left her to sleep for an hour 
or so ; but presently the Witch, who had feigned sickness to the 
intent only that she might learn where Prince Ahmad abode and 
might inform the Sultan thereof, being assured that she had dis- 
covered all that she- desired, rose up and summoning the damsels 
said to them, " The drinking of that draught hath restored to me 
all my health and strength : I now feel hale and hearty once more 
and my limbs are filled with new life and vigour. So at once 
acquaint your lady herewith, that I may kiss the hem of her robe 
and return my thanks for her goodness me-wards, then depart and 
hie me home again/' Accordingly, the two handmaidens took the 
Sorceress with them and showed her as they went along the several 
apartments, each more magnificent and kingly than the other ; and 
at length they reached the belvedere which was the noblest saloon 
of all, and fitted and filled with furniture exceeding costly and 
curious. There sat Peri-Barm upon a throne which was adorned 
with diamonds and rubies, emeralds, pearls and other gems of 
unwonted size and water, whilst round about her stood fairies of 
lovely form and features, robed in the richest raiments and awaiting 
with folded hands her commandments. The Sorceress marvelled 
with extreme marvel to see the splendour of the chambers and their 
furniture, but chiefly when she beheld the Lady Peri-Banu seated 
upon the jewelled throne ; nor could she speak a word for con- 
fusion and awe, but she bent down low and placed her head upon 
Peri-Banu's feet. Quoth the Princess in soft speech and reassuring 
tones, " O good woman, it pleaseth me greatly to see thec a guest 
in this my palace, and I joy even more to learn that thou be wholly 
quit of thy sickness. So now solace thy spirits with walking all 
round about the place and my servants will accompany thee and 
show thee what there is worthy of thine inspection." Hereat the 
Witch again louted low and kissed the carpet under Peri-Banu's 
feet, and took leave of her hostess in goodly phrase and with great 
show of gratitude for her favours. The handmaids then led her 

466 Supplemental Nights. 

round the palace and displayed to her all the rooms, which dazed 
and dazzled her sight so that she could not find words to praise 
them sufficiently. Then she went her ways and the fairies 
escorted her past the iron doorway whereby Prince Ahmad had 
brought her in, and left her, bidding her God-speed and blessing 
her ; and the foul crone with many thanks took the road to her 
own home. But when she had walked to some distance she was 
minded to see the iron door, so might she with ease know it 
again ; so she went back, but lo and behold ! the entrance had 
vanished and was invisible to her as to all other women. Accordingly, 
after searching on all sides and pacing to and fro and finding nor sign 
nor trace of palace or portal, she repaired in despair to the city 
and, creeping along a deserted path-way, entered the palace, 
according to her custom, by the private postern. When safely 
within she straightway sent word by an eunuch to the Sultan, 
who ordered that she be brought before him. She approached 
him with troubled countenance, whereat, perceiving that she had 
failed to carry out her purpose, he asked, *' What news ? Hast 
thou accomplished thy design or hast thou been baffled therein ? " 
- And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace 

enti of tlje 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
Sorceress, who was a mere creature of the malicious Wazir, 
replied, " O King of kings, this matter have I fully searched out 
even as thou gavest command, and I am about to tell thee all 
that hath betided me. The signs of sorrow and marks of melan- 
choly thou notest upon my countenance are for other cause which 
narrowly coneerneth thy welfare." Then she began to recount 
her adventure in these terms, " Now when I had reached the 
rocks I sat me down feigning sickness ; and, as Prince Ahmad 

Prince Ahmad and tke Fairy Peri-Banu. 467 

passed that way and heard my complaining and saw my grievous 
condition, he had compassion on me. After some 'said and say 
he took me with him by a subterranean passage and through an 
iron door to a magnificent palace and gave me in charge of a 
fairy, Peri-Banu hight, of passing beauty and loveliness, such as 
human eye hath never yet seen. Prince Ahmad bade her make 
me her guest for some few days and "bring me a medicine which 
would complete mycure, and she to please him at once appointed 
handmaidens to attend upon me. So I was certified that the twain 
were one flesh, husband and wife. I feigned to be exceeding 
frail and feeble and made as though I had not strength to 
walk or even to stand ; whereat the two damsels supported me, 
one on either side, and I was carried into a room where they 
gave me somewhat to drink and put me upon a bed to rest and 
sleep. Then thought I to myself: Verily I have gained the 
object wherefor I had feigned sickness ; and I was assured that 
it availed no more to practise deceit. Accordingly, after a short 
while I arose and said to the attendants that the draught which 
they had given me to drink had cut short the -fever and had 
restored strength to my limbs and life to my frame. Then they 
led me to the presence of the Lady Peri-Banu, who was exceeding 
pleased to see me once more hale and hearty, and bade her hand- 
maidens conduct me around the palace and show each room in its 
beauty and splendour ; after which I craved leave to wend my ways 
and here am I again to work thy will." When thus she had 
made known to the King all that had bctided her, she resumed. 
14 Perchance, on hearing of the might and majesty, opulence and 
magnificence of the Lady Peri-Banu, thou wilt be gladdened and 
say within thyself : 'Tis well that Prince Ahmad is wedded to this. 
Fairy and hath gotten for himself such wealth and power ; but to 
the thinking of this thy slave the matter is quite other. It is 
not well, I dare avouch, that thy son should possess such puissance 
and treasures, for who knoweth but that he may by good aid 

468 Supplemental Nights. 

of Peri-Banu bring about division and disturbance in the realm ? 
Beware of the wiles and malice of women. The Prince is 
bewitched with love of her, and peradventure at her incitement 
he may act towards thee otherwise than right, and lay hands on 
thy hoards and seduce thy subjects and become master of thy 
kingdom ; and albeit he would not of his own free will do aught 
to his father and his forbears save what was pious and dutiful, 
yet the charms of his Princess may work upon him little by little 
and end by making him a rebel and what more I may not say. 
Now mayest thou see that the matter is a weighty, so be not 
heedless but give it full consideration." Then the Sorceress 
made ready to gang her gait when spake the King, saying, "I 
am beholden to thee in two things; the first, that thou tookest 
upon thyself much toil and travail, and on my behalf riskedst thy 
life to learn the truth anent my son Prince Ahmad. Secondly, I 
am thankful for that thou hast given me a rede so sound and 
such wholesome counsel/' So saying, he dismissed her with the 
highmost honour ; but no sooner had she left the palace than he, 
sore distraught, summoned his second Wazir, the malicious Minister 
who had incited him against Prince Ahmad, and when he and his 
friends appeared in the presence he laid before them the whole matter 
and asked of them, saying, " What is your counsel, and what 
must I do to protect myself and my kingdom against the wiles 
of this Fairy?" Replied one of his councillors, "Tis but a 
trifling matter and the remedy is simple and nearhand. Command 
that Prince Ahmad, who is now within the city if not in the palace, 
be detained as one taken prisoner. Let him not be put to 
death, lest haply the deed may engender rebellion ; but at any 
rate place him under arrest and if he prove violent clap him in 
irons." And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her 
peace till 

Prince Ahmad and thi Fairy Pcri-Banu. 469 

tit* of MK Sbix TlMmtJufc an* 

THEN said she : - I have heard, O auspicious King, that this felon 
counsel pleased the malicious Minister and all his fautors and flatterers 
highly approved his rede. The Sultan kept silence and made no 
reply, but on the morrow he sent and summoned the Sorceress 
and debated with her whether he should or should not cast Prince 
Ahmad into prison. Quoth she, " O King of kings, this counsel is 
clean contrary to sound sense and right reason. An thou throw 
Prince Ahmad into gaol, so must thou also do with all his knights 
and their esquires ; and inasmuch as they are Jinns and Mirids, 
who can tell their power of reprisals ? Nor prison-cells nor gates 
of adamant can keep them in ; they will forthwith escape and 
report such violence to the Fairy who, wroth with extreme wrath 
to find her husband doomed to durance vile like a common male- 
factor, and that too for no default or crime but by a treacherous 
arrest, will assuredly deal the direst of vengeance on thy head and 
do us a damage we shall not be able to forfend. An thou wilt 
confide in me, I will advise thee how to act, whereby thou mayest 
win thy wish and no evil will come nigh thee or thy kingship. 
Thou knowest well that to Jinns and Fairies is power given of 
doing in one short moment deeds marvellous and wondrous, which 
mortals fail to effect after long years of toil and trouble. Now 
whenas thou goest a-hunting or on other expedition, thou requirest 
pavilions for thyself and many tents for thy retinue and attendants 
and soldiery ; and in making ready and transporting such store 
much time and wealth are wastefully expended. I would advise, 
O King of kings, that thou try Prince Ahmad by the following 
test : do thou bid him bring to thee a Shahmiydnah * so long and so 
broad that it will cover and lodge the whole of thy court and 
men-at-arms and camp-followers, likewise the beasts of burthen ; 

1 A huge marquee or pavilion-tent in India. 

4/e Supplemental Nights. 

and yet it must be so light that a man may hold it in the hollow 
of his hand and carry it whithersoever he listeth." Then, after 
holding her peace for a while, she added, still addressing the 
Sultan, " And as soon as Prince Ahmad shall, acquit himself of 
this commission, do thou demand of him a somewhat still greater 
and more wondrous wherewith I will make thee ware, and which 
he will find grievous of execution. On this wise shalt thou fill 
thy treasury with rare inventions and strange, the handicraft of 
Jann, nor will this cease till such time in fine when thy son shall 
be at his wits' end to carry out thy requirements. Then, humbled 
and abashed, he will never dare to enter thy capital or even thy 
presence ; and thus shalt thou be saved from fear of harm at his 
hands, and thou shalt not have need to put him in gaol or, worse 
still, to do him dead." Hearing these words of wisdom, the 
Sultan made known the Witch's device to his advisers and asked 
them what they deemed thereof. They held their peace and 
answered not a word or good or ill ; while he himself highly 
approved it and said no more. Next day Prince Ahmad came 
to visit the King, who welcomed him with overflowing affection 
and clasping him to his bosom kissed him on eyes and forehead. 
Long time they sat conversing on various subjects, till at length 
the Sultan finding an occasion spake thus, " O dear my son, O 
Ahmad, for many a day have I been sad at heart and sorrowful 
of soul because of separation from thee, and when thou earnest 
back I was gladdened with great gladness at sight of thee, and 
albeit thou didst and dost still withhold from me the knowledge 
of thy whereabouts, I refrained from asking thee or seeking to 
find out thy secret, since it was not according to thy mind to 
tell me of thine abode. Now, however, I have heard say that 
thou art wedded to a mighty Jinnfyah *, of passing beauty ; and 

1 The Jinn feminine ; see vol. i. 10. The word hardly corresponds with the Pert, 
'Peri" and Engl. " Fairy," a creation, like the "Dfv," of the so-called "Aryan," not 
"Semitic." race. 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 471 

the tidings please me with the highmost possible pleasure. I desire 
not to learn aught from thee concerning thy Fairy-wife save whatso 
thou wouldst entrust to me of thine own free will ; but, say me, 
should I at any time, require somewhat of thee, canst thou obtain it 
from her ? Doth she regard thee with such favour that she will 
not deny thee anything thou askest of her ?" Quoth the Prince, 
" O my lord, what dost thou demand of me ? My wife is devoted 
to her husband in heart and soul, so prithee let me learn what 
it is thou wouldst have of me and her." Replied the Sultan, 
" Thou knowest that ofttimes I fare a-hunting or on some foray 
and fray, when I have great need of tents and pavilions and 
Shahmiyanahs, with herds and troops of camels and mules and 
other beasts of burden to carry the camp from place to place. I 
would, therefore, that thou bring me a tent so light that a man may 
carry it in the hollow of his hand, and yet so large that it may 
contain my court and all my host and camp and suttlers and bat- 
animals. An thou wouldst ask the Lady for this gift I know full 
well that she can give it ; and hereby shalt thou save me much of 
trouble in providing carriage for the tentage and spare me much 
waste and loss of beasts and men." The Prince replied, " O my 
sire the Sultan, trouble not thy thought. I will at once make 
known thy wish to my wife, the Lady Peri-Banu ; and, albeit little 
I wot an fairies have the faculty of making a pavilion such as thou 
describest, or indeed (supposing that they have such power), an she 
will grant me or not grant me her aidance ; and, moreover, although 
I cannot promise thee such present, yet whatsoever lieth in my 
ability to do, that will I gladly do for thy service." And as the 
morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

2Tf)e enfc of tfjc *>ix fDunbrtU ant) sbiitn.fcrst Xtgfjt. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that quoth 

the King to Prince Ahmad, " Shouldst thou perchance fail in 

472 Supplemental Nights. 

this matter and bring me not the gift required, O my son, I will 
never see thy face again. A sorry husband thou, in good sooth, 
if thy wife refuse so mean a thing and hasten not to do all thou 
biddest her do ; giving thee to see that thou art of small value and 
consequence in her eyes, and that her love for thee is a quantity 
well nigh to naught. But do thou, O my child, go forth and straight- 
way ask her for the tent. An she give it thee know thou she 
desireth thee and thou art the dearest of all things to her ; and I 
have been informed that she loveth thee with all her heart and soul 
and will by no means refuse thee aught thou requirest, were it even 
the balls of her eyes." Now Prince Ahmad was ever wont to tarry 
three days each month with the Sultan his sire, and return to his 
spouse on the fourth ; but this time he stayed two days only and 
farewelled his father on the third. As he passed into the palace 
Peri-Banu could not but note that he was sad at heart and down- 
cast of face ; so she asked of him, " Is all well with thee ? " Why 
has thou come to-day and not to-morrow from the presence of the 
King thy father, and why earnest thou so triste a countenance ? " 
Whereupon, after kissing her brow and fondly embracing her, he 
told her the whole matter, first to last, and she made answer, " I 
will speedily set thy mind at rest, for I would not see thee so 
saddened for a moment longer. Howbeit, O my love, from this 
petition of the Sultan thy sire I am certified that his end draweth 
nigh, and he will soon depart this world to the mercy of Allah the 
Almighty. 1 Some enemy hath done this deed and much of mis- 
chief hath made for thee ; and the result is that thy father, all 
unmindful of his coming doom, doth seek diligently his own 
destruction." The Prince, anxious and alarmed, -thus answered his 
wife, " Almighty Allah be praised, the King my liege lord is in the 
best of health and showeth no sign of disorder or decrepitude : 'tis 

1 Galland makes the Fairy most unjustifiably fear that her husband is meditating the 
murder of his father ; and the Hindi in this point has much the advantage of the 


Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 473 

but this morning I left him hale and hearty, and in very sooth I never 
saw him in better case. Strange, indeed, that thou shouldst ken 
what shall betide him before I have told thee aught concerning him, 
and especially how he hath come to learn of our marriage and of 
our home." Quoth Peri-Banu, " O my Prince, thou knowest what 
I said to thee whenas I saw the old dame whom thou broughtest 
hither as one afflicted with the ague and fever. That woman, who 
is a Witch of Satan's breed, hath disclosed to thy father all he 
sought to learn concerning this our dwelling-place. And notwith- 
standing that I saw full clearly she was nor sick nor sorry, but only 
feigning a fever, I gave her medicine to drink which cureth com- 
plaints of all kinds, and she falsely made believe that by its virtues 
she had recovered health and strength. So when she came to take 
leave of me, I sent her with two of my damsels and bid them 
display to her every apartment in the palace together with its 
furniture and decorations, that she might better know the con- 
dition of me and thee. Now all this did I on thy account only, for 
thou badest me show compassion to the ancient woman and I was 
rejoiced to see her departing safe and sound and in the best 
of spirits. Save her alone, no human being had ever power to 
know aught of this place, much less to come hither." Prince 
Ahmad hearing these words thanked and praised her and said, " O 
sun-faced beauty, I would beg of thee to grant me a boon whereof 
my father hath made request of me; to wit, a Shahmiyanah of such 
dimensions that it may shelter him and his many, his camp and 
bat-cattle and withal may be carried in the hollow of the hand. 
An such marvel exist I wot not, yet would I do my utmost to pro- 
cure it, and carry it to him right loyally." Quoth she, " Why 
trouble thyself for so small a matter ? I will forthright send for it 
and give it thee." Then she summoned one of her handmaids who 
was treasurer to her and said, " O Nur Jehdn, 1 go thou at once and 

1 Per*, ft "Light of ihe Woild ; " familiar to Europe as the name of the Grand Moghul 
Jehanglr's principal wife. 

474 Supplemental Nights. 

bring me a pavilion of such and such a fashion." So she fared forth 
without delay and as quickly came back with the pavilion which, 
at her lady's bidding, she placed in the palm of Prince Ahmad's 

hand. And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her 

peace till 

*&& entr of t&e gfcfx ^unUrctf an& g>fxts*seccm& jSigljt. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Prince 

Ahmad hent the pavilion in hand and thought to himself, 
"What is this Peri-Banu giveth me? Surely she doth make 
a mock of me." His wife, however, reading his mind in his 
face, fell to laughing aloud, and asked, " What is it, O my dearling 
Prince ? Dost thou think that I am jesting and jibing at thee ? " 
Then she continued, addressing the treasurer Nur Jehan, " Take 
now yon tent from Prince Ahmad and set it upon the plain 
that he may see its vast size and know if it be such an one as 
required by the Sultan his sire." The handmaid took the pavilion 
and pitched it afar from the Palace ; and yet one end thereof 
reached thereto from the outer limit of the plain ; and so immense 
was its size that (as Prince Ahmad perceived) there was room 
therein for all the King's court; and, were two armies ranged 
under it with their camp-followers and bat-animals, one would 
on no wise crowd or inconvenience the other. He then begged 
pardon of Peri-Banu saying, " I wot not that the Shahmiyanah 
was so prodigious of extent and of so marvellous a nature ; 
wherefore I misdoubted when first I saw it." The Treasurer 
presently struck the tent and returned it to the palm of his hand ; 
then, without stay or delay, he took horse and followed by his 
retinue rode back to the royal presence, where after obeisance and 
suit and service he presented the tent. The Sultan also, at first 
sight of the gift, thought it a small matter, but marvelled with 
extreme marvel to see its size when pitched, for it would have 
shaded his capital and its suburbs. He was not, however, wholly 

Prince A hmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 47 5 

satisfied, for the size of the pavilion now appeared to him super- 
fluous ; but his son assured him that it would always fit itself to its 
contents. He thanked the Prince for bringing him so rare a present, 
aying, " O my son, acquaint thy consort with my obligation to her 
and offer my grateful thanks for this her bounteous gift. Now indeed 
know I of a truth that she doth love thee with the whole of her 
heart and soul and all my doubts and fears are well nigh set at 
rest." Then the King commanded they should pack up the 
tent and store it with all care in the royal treasury. Now strange 
it is but true, that when the Sultan received this rare present from 
the Prince, the fear and doubt, the envy and jealousy of his son, 
which the Witch and the malicious Wazir and his other ill-advisers 
had bred in his breast, waxed greater and livelier than before ; be- 
cause he was now certified that in very truth the Jinniyah was 
gracious beyond measure to her mate and that, notwithstanding 
the great wealth and power of the sovereign, she could outvie him 
in mighty deeds for the aidance of her husband. Accordingly, he 
feared" with excessive fear lest haply she seek opportunity to slay 
him to favour of the Prince whom she might enthrone in his 
stead. So he bade bring the Witch who had counselled him afore- 
time, and upon whose sleight and malice he now mainly relied. 
When he related to her the result of her rede, she took thought for 
a while ; then, raising her brow said, " O King of kings, thoii 
troublest thyself for naught : thou needest only command Prince 
Ahmad to bring thee of the water of the Lions' Spring. He must 
perforce for his honour's sake fulfil thy wish, and if he fail he will 
for very shame not dare to show his face again at court. No better 
plan than this canst thou adopt ; so look to it nor loiter on thy 
way." Next day at eventide, as the Sultan was seated in full 
Darbar surrounded by his Wazirs and Ministers, Prince Ahmad 
came forwards and making due obeisance took seat by his side and 
below him. Hereat, the King addressed him, as was his wont, with 
great show of favour saying, " It delighteth me mightily that thou 
VOL. m. II 

476 Supplemental Nights. 

hast brought me the tent I required of thee ; for surely in my 
Treasury there be naught so rare and strange. Yet one other 
thing lack I, and couldst thou bring it me I shall rejoice with joy 
exceeding. I have heard tell that the Jinniyah, thy consort, 
maketh constant use of a water which floweth 'from the Lions' 
Spring, the drinking whereof doeth away with fevers and all other 
deadly diseases. I know thou art anxious that I live in health ; 
and thou wilt gladden me by bringing somewhat of that water, so 
I may drink thereof when occasion shall require, and well I wot 
that, as thou valuest my love and affection thee-wards, thou wilt 
not refuse to grant me my request." Prince Ahmad on hearing 
this demand was struck with surprise that his sire should so soon 
make a second demand. So he kept silence awhile, thinking within 
himself, " I have managed by some means to obtain the tent from 
the Lady Peri-Banu, but Allah only knoweth how she will now 
act, and whether this fresh request will or will not rouse her wrath. 
Howbeit I know that she will on no wise deny me any boon I may 
ask of her." So after much hesitation Prince Ahmad made 
reply, " O my lord the King, I have no power to do aught in this 
matter, which resteth only with my spouse the Princess ; yet will I 
petition her to give the water ; and, if she vouchsafe consent I will 
bring it straight to thee. Indeed I cannot promise thee such boon 
with all certainty : I would gladly do my endeavour in all and 
everything that can benefit thee, but to ask her for this water is a 
work more weighty than asking for the tent" Next day the Prince 
took his departure and returned to Peri-Banu ; and after loving 
embraces and greetings quoth he, " O my lady and light of my 
eyes, the Sultan my sire sendeth thee his grateful thanks for the 
granting of his wish ; to wit, the pavilion ; and now he adventureth 
himself once more and, certified of thy bounty and beneficence, he 
would pray from thy hand the boon of a little water from the Lions' 
Spring. Withal I would assure thee that an the giving of this 
water please thee not, let the matter be clean forgotten ; for to do all 
thou wiliest is my one and only wish." Peri-Banu made reply, 

Prince Akntad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 477 

" Methinks the Sultan, thy sire, would put both roe and thee to the 
test by requiring such boons as those suggested to him by the 

Sorceress." And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held 

her peace till 

Cfjf enU of tfce Sbtx ftjun&rrt anftf Sbiitp-tbirtJ Xig&t. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Peri-Banu 

said further to Prince Ahmad, " Natheless I will grant this largesse 
also as the Sultan hath set his mind upon it, and no harm shall 
come therefrom to me or to thee, albc 'tis a matter of great risk and 
danger, and it is prompted by not a little of malice and ungracious- 
ness. But give careful heed to my words, nor neglect thou aught 
of them, or thy destruction is certain-sure. I now will tell thee 
what to do. In the hall of yonder castle which riseth on that 
mountain is a fountain sentinelled by four lions fierce and 
ravening ; and they watch and ward the path that leadeth thereto, 
a pair standing on guard whilst the other two take their turn to 
rest, and thus no living thing hath power to pass by them. Yet 
will I make known to thee the means whereby thou mayest win 
thy wish without any hurt or harm befalling thee from the furious 
beasts." Thus saying she drew from an ivory box a clew of thread 
and, by means of a needle one of those wherewith she had been ply- 
ing her work, made thereof a ball. This she placed in the hands of 
her husband, and said, " First, be thou careful that thou keep about 
thee with all diligence this ball, whose use I shall presently explain 
to thee. Secondly, choose for thyself two horses of great speed, one 
for thine own riding, whilst on the other thou shalt load the carcass 
of a freshly slaughtered sheep cut into four quarters. In the third 
place, take with thee a phial wherewith I will provide thee, and 
this is for carrying the water which thou, Inshallah God willing 
shalt bring back. As soon as the morn shall morrow do thou 
arise with the light and go forth riding thy chosen steed and 

478 Supplemental Nights. 

leading the other alongside of thee by the reins. When thou shalt 
reach the iron portals which open upon the castle-court, at no 
great distance from the gate, do thou cast the ball of thread upon 
the ground before thee. Forthwith it will begin rolling onwards 
of its own will towards the castle door ; and do thou follow it 
through the open entrance until such time as it stop its course. 
At this moment thou shalt see the four lions ; and the two that 
wake and watch will rouse the twain that sleep and rest. All four 
will turn their jaws to the ground and growl and roar with 
hideous howlings, and make as though about to fall upon thee and 
tear thee limb from limb. However, fear not nor be dismayed, but 
ride boldly on and throw to the ground from off the led-horse the 
sheep's quarters, one to each lion. See that thou alight not from 
thy steed, but gore his ribs with thy shovel-stirrup l and ride with 
all thy might and main up to the basin which gathereth the water. 
Here dismount and fill the phial whilst the lions will be busied 
eating. Lastly, return with all speed and the beasts will not 
prevent thy passing by them." Next day, at peep of morn, Prince 
Ahmad did according to all that Peri-Banu had bidden him and 
rode forth to the castle. Then, having passed through the iron 
portals and crossed the court and opened the door, he entered the 
hall, where he threw the quarters of the sheep before the lions, one 
to each, and speedily reached the Spring. He filled his phial with 
water from the basin and hurried back with all haste. But when he 
had ridden some little distance he turned about and saw two of the 
guardian lions following upon his track ; however, he was on no wise 
daunted but drew his sabre from the sheath to prepare him for self- 
protection. Hereat one of the twain seeing him bare his brand for 
defence, retired a little way from the road and, standing at gaze, 

1 The Arab stirrup, like that of the Argentine Gaucho, was originally made of wood, 
liable to break, and forming a frail support for lancer and sworder. A famous chief and 
warrior, Abu Sa'id al-Muhallab (ob. A.H. 83=703) first gave orders to forge foot- 
rests of iron. 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Banu. 479 

nodded his head and wagged his tail, as though to pray the Prince 
to put up his scymitar and to assure him that he might ride in 
peace and fear no peril. The other lion then sprang forwards ahead 
of him and kept close him, and the two never ceased to escort him 
until they reached the city, nay even the gate of the Palace. The 
second twain also brought up the rear till Prince Ahmad had 
entered the Palace-door ; and, when they were certified of this, all 
four went back by the way they came. Seeing such wondrous 
spectacle, the towns-folk all fled in dire dismay, albeit the 
enchanted beasts molested no man ; and presently some mounted 
horsemen espying their lord riding alone and unattended came up 
to him and helped him alight. The Sultan was sitting in his 
audience-hall conversing with his Wazirs and Ministers when his 
son appeared before him ; and Prince Ahmad, having greeted him and 
blessed him and, in dutiful fashion, prayed for his permanence of 
existence and prosperity and opulence, placed before his feet the phia) 
full of the water from the Lions' Spring, saying, " Lo, I have brought 
thee the boon thou desiredst of me. This water is most rare and 
hard to obtain ; nor is there in all thy Treasure-house aught so 
notable and of such value as this. If ever thou fall ill of any 
malady (Almighty Allah forfend this should be in thy Destiny !) 
then drink a draught thereof and forthwith thou shalt be made 
whole of whatso distemper thou hast." When Prince Ahmad had 
made an end of speaking, the Sultan, with all love and affection, 
grace and honour, embraced him and kissed his head ; then, 
seating him on his right said, " O my son, I am beholden to thee. 
beyond count and measure, for that thou hast adventured thy life 
and brought this water with great irk and risk from so perilous 
a place.'* Now the Witch had erewhile informed the King con- 
cerning the Lions' Spring and of the mortal dangers which beset 
the site ; so that he knew right well how gallant was his son's derring* 
do ; and presently he said, " Say me, O my child, how couldst 
thou venture thither and escape from the lions and broughtest 

480 Supplemental Nights. 

back the water, thyself remaining safe and sound ? " - And as 
the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

entr of tfce Si* f^unftrtlv an* g>txtg-fourtf) Nfgfit. 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
Prince replied, "By thy favour, O my lord the Sultan, have I 
returned in safety from that stead mainly because I did according 
to the bidding of my spouse, the Lady Peri-Banu ; and I have 
brought the water from the Lions' Spring only by carrying out 
her commands." Then he made known to his father all that had 
befallen him in going and returning ; and when the Sultan noted 
the pre-eminent valiance and prowess of his son he only feared 
the more, and the malice and the rancour, envy and jealousy which 
filled his heart waxed tenfold greater than before. However, dis- 
sembling his true sentiments he dismissed Prince Ahmad and 
betaking him to his private chamber at once sent word to bid the 
Witch appear in the presence ; and when she came, he told her of 
the Prince's visit and all about the bringing of the water from the 
Lions' Spring. She had already heard somewhat thereof by reason of 
the hubbub in the city at the coming of the lions ; but, as soon as 
she had given ear to the whole account, she marvelled with mighty 
marvel and, after whispering in the Sultan's ear her new device, 
said to him in triumph, " O King of kings, this time thou shalt 
lay a charge on the Prince and such commandment methinks will 
trouble him and it shall go hard with him to execute aught 
thereof." " Thou sayest well," replied the Sovran, " now indeed 
will I try this. plan thou hast projected for me." Wherefore, next day 
whenas Prince Ahmad came to the presence of his sire, the King 
said to him, " O dear my child, it delighteth me exceedingly to see 
thy virtue and valour and the filial love wherewith thou art fulfilled, 
good gifts chiefly shown by obtaining for me the two rarities I 
asked of thee. And now one other and final requirement I have 
of thee ; and, shouldst thou avail to satisfy my desire, I shall be 

Prince Ahmad and tke Fairy Ptri-Banu. 48* 

well-pleased in my beloved son and render thanks to him for the 
rest of my days." Prince Ahmad answered, " What is the boon 
thou requirest ? I will for my part do thy bidding as far as in 
me lieth." Then quoth the King in reply to the Prince, " I would 
fain have thee bring me a man of size and stature no more than 
three feet high, with beard full twenty ells in length, who beareth 
on his shoulder a quarter staff of steel, thirteen score pounds in 
weight, which he wieldeth with ease and swingeth around his head 
without wrinkle on brow, even as men wield cudgels of wood." 
On this wise the Sultan, led astray by the Doom of Destiny and 
heedless alike of good and evil, asked that which should bring 
surest destruction upon himself. Prince Ahmad also, with blind 
obedience out of pure affection to his parent, was ready to supply 
him with all he required unknowing what was prepared for him 
in the Secret Purpose. Accordingly he said, tt O my sire the 
Sultan, I trow me 'twill be hard to find, all the world over, a man 
such as thou desirest, still t will work my best to do thy bidding." 
Thereupon the Prince retired from the presence and returned, as 
usual, to his palace where he greeted Peri-Banu with love and 
gladness ; but his face was troubled and his heart was heavy at 
the thought of the King's last behest. Perceiving his pre-occu- 
pation the Princess asked him, saying, " O dear my lord, what 
tidings bringest thou for me to-day ? " Hereto replied he, 
" The Sultan at each visit requireth of me some new thing and 
burtheneth me with his requests ; and to-day he purposeth to try 
me and, in the hopes of putting me to shame, he asketh somewhat 
which 'twere vain to hope I can find in all the world." There- 
upon Prince Ahmad told her all the King had said to him. 
And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

fce en& of rftc gbii ?Qun&& an* S>uty.fiftJ) Wfiftf, 

THEN said she : I have heard, O auspicious King, that Pcri-Banu 
hearing these words said to the Prince, " Trouble not thyself at alt 

482 Supplemental Nights. 

in this matter. Thou didst venture at great risk to carry off for thy 
father water from the Lions' Spring and thou succeededst in winning 
thy wish. Now this task is on no wise more difficult or dangerous than 
was that : nay, 'tis the easier, for that he thou describest is none other 
than Shabbar, my brother-german. AHhough we both have the same 
parents, yet it pleased Almighty Allah to enform us in different 
figures and to make him unlike his sister as being in mortal mould 
can be. Moreover he is valiant and adventurous, always seeking 
some geste and exploit whereby to further my interest, and right 
willingly doth he carry out whatso he undertaketh. He is shaped 
and formed as the Sultan thy sire hath described, nor useth he any 
weapons save the Nabbut 1 or quarter staff of steel. And see now 
I will send for him, but be not thou dismayed at sighting him." 
Replied Prince Ahmad, "If he be in truth thine own brother what 
matter how he looketh ? I shall be pleased to see him as when 
one welcometh a valued friend or a beloved kinsman. Wherefore 
should I fear to look upon him ? " Hearing these words Peri-Banu 
despatched one of her attendants who brought to her from her private 
treasury a chafing-dish of gold ; then she bade a fire be lit therein, 
and sending for a casket of noble metals studded with gems, the gift 
of her kinsmen, she took therefrom some incense and cast it upon 
the flames. Herewith issued a dense smoke spireing high in air 
and spreading all about the palace ; and a few moments after, Peri- 
Banu who had ceased her conjurations cried, " Lookye my brother 
Shabbar cometh ! canst thou distinguish his form ? " The Prince 
looked up and saw a mannikin in stature dwarfish and no more 
than three feet high, and with a boss on breast and a hump 
on back ; withal he carried himself with stately mien and majestic 
air. On his right shoulder was borne his quarter staff of steel 
thirteen score pounds in weight. His beard was thick and twenty 
cubits in length but arranged so skilfully that it stood clear off 

1 For this Egyptian and Syrian weapon see vol. i. 234. 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Peri-Ban*. 483 

from the ground ; he wore also a twisted pair of long mustachios 
curling up to his ears, and all his face was covered with long pile. 
His eyes were not unlike unto pig's eyes ; and his head, on which 
was placed a crown-like coiffure, was enormous of bulk, contrasting 
with the meanness of his stature. Prince Ahmad sat calmly beside his 
wife, the Fairy, and felt no fear as the figure approached ; and prc* 
eently Shabbar walked up and glancing at him asked Peri-Banu say- 
ing, " Who be this mortal who sitteth hard by thee ? " Hereto she 
replied, " O my brother, this is my beloved husband, Prince Ahmad, 
son of the Sultan of Hindostan. I sent thee not an invitation to 
the wedding as thou wast then engaged on some great expedition ; 
now, however, by the grace of Almighty Allah thou hast returned 
triumphant and victorious over thy foes, wherefore I have summoned 
thee upon a matter which nearly concerneth me." Hearing these 
words Shabbar looked graciously at Prince Ahmad, saying, " O 
my beloved sister, is there any service I can render to him ! " and she 
replied, " The Sultan his sire desireth ardently to see thee, and I 
pray thee go forthright to him and take the Prince with thee by 
way of guide." Said he, " This instant I am ready to set forth ; " 
but said she, " Not yet, O my brother. Thou art fatigued with 
journeying ; so defer until the morrow thy visit to the King, and 
this evening I will make known to thee all that' concerneth Prince 
Ahmad." Presently the time came ; so Peri-Banu informed her 
brother Shabbar concerning the King and his ill-counsellors ; but 
she dwelt mainly upon the misdeeds of the old woman, the 
Witch ; and how she had schemed to injure Prince Ahmad and 
despitefully prevent his going to city or court, and she had gained 
such influence over the Sultan that he had given up his will to 
hers and ceased not doing whatso she bade him. Next day at 
dawn Shabbar the Jinn and Prince Ahmad set out together upon 
a visit to the Sultan ; and, when they had reached the city gates, 
all the folk, nobles and commons, were struck with consternation 
at the dwarfs hideous form ; and, flying on every side in affright 

484 Supplemental Nights. 

and running into shops and houses, barred the doors and closed 
the casements and hid themselves therein. So panic-stricken 
indeed was their flight that many feet lost shoes and sandals in 
running, while from the heads of others their loosened turbandj*. 
fell to earth. And when they twain approached the palace through 
streets and squares and market-places desolate as the Desert of 
Samawah, 1 all the keepers of the gates took to their heels at sight 
of Shabbar and fled, so there was none to hinder their entering. 
They walked straight on to the audience-chamber where the 
Sultan was holding Darbar, and they found in attendance on him 
a host of Ministers and Councillors, great and small, each standing in 
his proper rank and station. They too on seeing Shabbar speedily 
took flight in dire dismay and hid themselves ; also the guards had 
deserted their posts nor cared in any way to let or stay the twain. 
The Sovran still sat motionless on his throne, where Shabbar went 
up to him with lordly mien and royal dignity and cried, " O King, 
thou hast expressed a wish to see me ; and lo, I am here. Say 

now what wouldst thou have me do ? " And as the morn began 

to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

t&e en& of tfte g>ix J^un&refc anfc gbtjctp-sfxtt) Ntgfit. 

THEN said she: 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 

King made no reply to Shabbar, but held up his hands before his 
eyes that he might not behold that frightful figure, and turning his 
head would fain have fled in terror. Shabbar was filled with fury 
at this rudeness on the part of the Sultan, and was wroth with 
exceeding wrath to think that he had troubled himself to come at 
the bidding of such a craven, who now on seeing him would fain 
run away. So the Jinn, without an instant's delay, raised his 

1 See vol. vii. 93, where an error of punctuation confounds it with Kerbela, a desert 
with, a place of pilgrimage. "Samawah "in Ibn Khali, (vol. i. 108) is also the name 
of a town on the Euphrates. 

Prince Ahmad and tht Fairy Peri-Banu. 485 

quarter staff of steel, and, swinging it twice, in air, before Prince 
Ahmad could reach the throne or on any wise interfere, struck the 
Sultan so fiercely upon the poll that his skull was smashed and 
his brains were scattered over the floor. And when Shabbar had 
made an end of this offender, he savagely turned upon the Grand 
Wazir who stood on the Sultan's right, and incontinently would 
have slain him also, but the Prince craved pardon for his life and 
said, " Kill him not : he is my friend and hath at no time said one 
evil word against me. But such is not the case with the others, 
his fellows." Hearing these words the infuriated Shabbar fell 
upon the Ministers and ill-counsellors on either side, to wit, all who 
had devised evil devices against Prince Ahmad, and slew them 
each and every and suffered none to escape save only those who 
had taken flight and hidden themselves. Then, going from the hall 
of justice to the courtyard, the Dwarf said to the Wazir whose life 
the Prince had saved, "Harkye, there is a Witch who beareth 
enmity against my brother, the husband of my sister. See that 
thou produce her forthright ; likewise the villain who filled his 
father's mind with hate and malice, envy and jealousy against 
him, so may I quite them in full measure for their misdeeds." The 
Grand Wazir produced them all, first the Sorceress, and then the 
malicious minister with his rout of fauters and flatterers, and 
Shabbar felled them one after the other with his quarter staff of steel 
and killed them pitilessly, crying to the Sorceress, " This is the end 
of all thy machinations with the King, and this is the fruit of thy 
deceit and treachery ; so learn not to feign thyself sick." And in 
the blindness of his passion he would have slain all the inhabitants 
of the city, but Prince Ahmad prevented him and pacified him 
with soft and flattering words. Hereupon Shabbar habited his 
brother in the royal habit and seated him on the throne and 
proclaimed him Sultan of Hindostan. The people all, both high 
and low, rejoiced with exceeding joy to hear these tidings, for 
Prince Ahmad was beloved by every one ; so they crowded to 

486 Supplemental Nights. 

swear fealty and bring presents and Nazaranahs * and raised shouts 
of acclamation crying out, " Long live King Ahmad ! " When all 
this was done, Shabbar sent for his sister, Peri-Banu, and made her 
Queen under the title of Shahr-Banu ; 2 and in due time taking 
leave of her and of King Ahmad, the Jinni returned to his own 
home. - And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her 
peace till 

enfc of tt> 

THEN said she : - " I have heard, O auspicious King, that after 
these things King Ahmad summoned Prince AH his brother and 
Nur al-Nihar and made, him governor of a large city hard by the 
capital, and dismissed him thither in high state and splendour. 
Also he commissioned an official to wait upon Prince Husayn and 
tell him all the tidings, and sent word saying, " I will appoint 
thee ruler over any capital x>r country thy soul desireth ;and, if thou 
consent, I will forward thee letters of appointment." But inas- 
much as the Prince was wholly content and entirely happy in 
Darwaysh-hood, he cared naught for rule or government or aught 
of worldly vanities ; so he sent back the official with his duty and 

1 Nazaranah prop. = the gift (or gifts) offered at visits by a Moslem noble or feoffee ia 
India to his feudal superior ; and the Kalichah of Hindu, Malabar, Goa and the Blue 
Mountains (p. 197). Hence the periodical tributes and especially the presents which 
represent our " legacy-duty " and the " succession-duty" for Rajahs and Nabobs, the 
latter so highly lauded by " The Times," as the logical converse of the Cornlaws which 
ruined our corn. The Nazaranah can always be made a permanent and a considerable 
source of revenue, far more important than such unpopular and un -Oriental device as an 
income-tax. But our financiers have yet to learn the A. B. C. of political economy in 
matters of assessment, which is to work upon familiar lines ; and they especially who, like 
Mr. Wilson "mad as a hatter," hold and hold forth that " what is good for England is 
good for the world." These myopics decide on theoretical and sentimental grounds that 
a poll-tax is bad in principle, which it may be, still public opinion sanctions it and it can 
be increased without exciting discontent,. The same with the *' Nazardnah ; " it has 
been the custom of ages immemorial, and a little more or a little less does not affect its 
popularity. ' 

Porf. City-queeo. 

Prince Ahmad and the Fairy Ptri-Banu. 487 

grateful thanks, requesting that he might be left to live his life in 
solitude and renunciation of matters mundane. Now when Queen 
Shahrazad had made an end of telling her story and yet the 
night was not wholly spent, King Shahryar spake saying, " This 
thy story, admirable and most wonderful, hath given me extreme 
delight ; and I pray thee do thou tell us another tale till such time 
as the last hours of this our night be passed." She replied, " Be 
it as thou wilt, O auspicious King : I am thy slave to do as thou 
shalt bid." Then she began to relate the tale of 




IN days of yore and in times long gone before there lived a 
King of Persia, Khusrau Shah hight, renowned for justice and 
righteousness. His father, dying at a good old age, had left him 
sole heir to all the realm and, under his rule, the tiger and the 
kid drank side by side at the same Ghat * ; and his treasury was 
ever full and his troops and guards were numberless. Now it 

1 Compare with this tale its modern and popular version Histoirt du Rosrigtul 
Ckantcur (Spitta-Bey, No. x, p. 123) : it contains the rosary (and the ring) that shrinks, 
the ball that rolls and the water that heals ; etc, etc. Mr. Clouston somewhere asserts 
that the History of the Envious Sisters, like that of Prince Ahmad and the Peri-Banu, 
are taken from a MS. still preserved in the ' King's Library," Paris ; but he cannot 
quote his authority, De Sacy or Langles. Mr. H. C. Cootc (loc. cit. p. 189) declares it 
to be, and to have been, " an enormous favourite in Italy and Sicily : no folk tale exists 
in those countries at all comparable to it in the number of its versions and in the extent 
of its distribution." He begins two centuries before Galland, with Straparola (Notti 
Piattvoli), proceeds to Imbriani (Novellaja Fiorcntina), Nerucci (Novelle Afontalcti), 
Comparetti (Novelline Italian*} and Pitre (Fiabc, Novell* Racconti popolari Italian*, 
vol i.) ; and informs us that "the adventures of the young girl, independently of the 
joint history of herself and her brother, are also told in a separate Fiaba in Italy. A tale 
called ' La Favenilla Coraggiosa ' is given by Visentini in his Fiabe Mantovan* and 
it is as far as it is a counterpart of the second portion of Galland's tale." Mr. Coote also 
finds this story in Hahn's " Griechische Marchen " entitled "Sun, Moon and Morning 
Star " the names of the royal children. The King overhears the talk of three girls and 
marries the youngest despite his stepmother, who substitutes for her issue a puppy, a 
kitten and a mouse. The castaways are adopted by a herdsman whilst the mother is 
confined in a henhouse ; and the King sees his offspring and exclaims, "These children 
are like those my wife promised me." His stepmother, hearing this, threatens the nurse, 
who goes next morning disguised as a beggar-woman to the girl and induces her to long 
for the Bough that makes music, the Magic Mirror, and the bird Dickierette. The 
brothers set out to fetch them leaving their shirts which become black when the mishap 
befalls them. The sister, directed by a monk, catches the bird and revives the stones by 
the Water of Life and the denouement is brought about by a sausage stuffed with dia- 
In Miss Stokes* Collection of Hindu Stories (No. u.) " The Boy who bad a 
i on his brow and a star on his chin " also suggests the " Envious Sisters." 

* Pop. " Ghaut " = The steps (or path) which lead down to a watering -place. 
Hence the Hindi saying concerning the "rolling stone "Dhobi-ka kutta ; na Char- 
ka na Ghat-ka, = a washerwoman's tyke, nor of the house nor of the Ghat -dyke. 
VOL.111. KK 

492 Supplemental Nights. 

was his wont to don disguise and, attended by a trusty Wazir, to 
wander about the street at night-time. Whereby things seld- 
seen and haps peregrine became known to him, the which, should 
I tell thee all thereof, O auspicious King, would weary thee beyond 
measure. So he took seat upon the throne of his forbears and 
when the appointed days of mourning were ended, according to 
the custom of that country, he caused his exalted name, that is 
Khusrau Shah, be struck upon all the coins of the kingdom and 
entered into the formula of public prayer. 1 And when stablished 
in his sovranty he went forth as aforetime on one evening accom- 
panied by his Grand Wazir, both in merchant's habit, walking the 
streets and squares, the markets and lanes, the better to note what 
might take place both of good and of bad. By chance they passed, 
as the night darkened, through a quarter where dwelt people of 
the poorer class ; and, as they walked on, the Shah heard inside 
a house women talking with loud voices ; then going near, he 
peeped in by the door-chink, and saw three fair sisters who having 
supped together were seated on a divan talking one to other. 
The King thereupon applied his ear to the crack and listened 
eagerly to what they said, and heard each and every declaring 
what was the thing she most desired. 2 Quoth the eldest, u I would 

1 Text " Khatibah ?/ more usually " Khutbah " = the Friday sermon preached by the 
Khatib : in this the reigning sovereign is prayed for by name and his mention together 
with the change of coinage is the proof of his lawful rule. See Lane, M. E. chap. iii. 

2 This form of eaves-dropping, in which also the listener rarely hears any good of him- 
self is, I need hardly now say, a favourite incident of Eastern storiology and even of history, 
e.g. Three men met together ; one of them expressed the wish to obtain a thousand pieces 
of gold, so that he might trade with them ; the other wished for an appointment under 
the Emir of the Moslems ; the third wished to possess Yusuf s wife, who was the hand- 
somest of women and had great political influence. Yusuf, being informed of what they 
said, sent for the men, bestowed one thousand dinars on him who wished for that sum, 
.gave an appointment to the other and said to him who wished to possess the lady : 
" Foolish man ! what induced you to wish for that which you can never obtain? " He 
then sent him to her and she placed him in a tent where he remained three days, receiv- 
ing, each day, one and the same kind of food. She had him then brought to her and 
said, *' What did you eat these days past " He replied : *' Always the same thing ! " 
" Well," said she, " all women are the same thing." She then ordered some money and 
a dress to be given him, after which, she dismissed him. (Ibn Khallikan iii. 463-64.) 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 495 

I were married to the Shah's head Baker for then should I ever have 
bread to eat, the whitest and choicest in the city, and your hearts 
would be fulfilled with envy and jealousy and malice at my good 
luck." Quoth the second, "I would rather wive with the Shah's 
chief Kitchener and eat of dainty dishes that are placed before his 
Highness, wherewith (he royal bread which is common throughout 
the Palace cannot compare for gust and flavour." And quoth the 
third and youngest of the three, and by far the most beautiful and 
lovely of them all, a maiden of charming nature, full of wit and 
humour ; sharp-witted, wary and wise, when her turn came to tell 
her wish, " O sisters, my ambition is not as ordinary as yours. I 
care not for fine bread nor glutton-like do I long for dainty dishes. 
I look to somewhat nobler and higher : indeed I would desire 
nothing less than to be married by the King and become the 
mother of a beautiful Prince, a model of form and in mind as 
masterful as valorous. His hair should be golden on one side and 
silvern on the other r when weeping he should drop pearls in place 
of tears, and when laughing his rosy lips should be fresh as the 
blossom new-blown." The Shah was amazed with exceeding 
amazement to hear the wishes of the three sisters, but chiefly of 
the youngest and determined in himself that he would gratify 
them all. Wherefore quoth he to the Grand Wazir, " Mark well 
this house and on the morrow bring before me these maidens 
whom we heard discoursing; 1 ' and quoth the Wazir, "O Asylum 
of the Universe, I hear but to obey." Thereupon the twain 
walked back to the palace and laid them down to rest When 
morning morrowed, the Minister went for the sisters and brought 
them to the King, who, after greeting them and heartening their 
hearts, said to them in kindly tone, " O ye maidens of weal, last 
night what was it that in merry word and jest ye spake one to 
other ? Take heed ye tell the Shah every whit in full detail, for 
all must become known to us ; something have we heard, but now 
the King would have ye recount your discourse to his royal ears," 

494 Supplemental Nights. 

- And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace 

of tfie %ix ^unUrrtJ an& 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that at these 
words of the Shah the sisters, confused and filled with shame, 
durst not reply but stood before him silent with heads bent 
low; and despite all questioning and encouragement they could 
not pluck up courage. However, the youngest was of passing 
comeliness in form and feature and forthwith the Shah became 
desperately enamoured of her ; and of his love began reassuring 
them and saying, " O ye Princesses of fair ones, be not afraid nor 
troubled in thought ; nor let bashfulness or shyness prevent you 
telling the Shah what three wishes you wished, for fain would he 
fulfil them all." Thereat they threw themselves at his feet and, 
craving his pardon for their boldness and freedom of speech, 
told him the whole talk, each one repeating the wish she had 
wished ; and on that very day Khusrau Shah married the eldest 
sister to his chief Baker, and the second sister to his head Cook, 
and bade make all things ready for his own wedding with the 
youngest sister. So when the preparations for the royal nuptials 
had been made after costliest fashion, the King's marriage was 
celebrated with royal pomp and pageantry, and the bride received 
the titles of Light of the Harem and Banu of Iran-land. The 
other two maidens were likewise married, one to the King's Baker 
the other to his Cook, after a manner according to their several 
degrees in life and with little show of grandeur and circumstance. 
Now it had been only right and reasonable that these twain 
having won each her own wish, should have passed their time in 
solace and happiness, but the decree of Destiny doomed otherwise ; 
and, as soon as they saw the grand estate whereto their youngest 
sister had risen, and the magnificence of her marriage-festival, 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 495 

their hearts were fired with envy and jealousy and sore despite 
and they resolved upon giving the rein to their hatred and malig- 
nancy and to work her some foul mischief. On this wise they 
remained for many months consumed with rancour, day and night ; 
and they burned with grief and anger whenever they sighted aught 
of her superior style and state. One morning as the two met at 
the Hammam and found privacy and opportunity, quoth the eldest 
sister to the second, " A grievous thing it is indeed that she, our 
youngest sister, no lovelier than ourselves, should thus be raised 
to the dignity and majesty of Queendom and indeed the thought 
is overhard to bear." Quoth the other, " O sister mine, I also am 
perplexed and displeased at this thing, and I know not what of 
merit the Shah could have seen in her that he was tempted to 
choose her for his consort. She ill befitteth that high estate with 
that face like a monkey's favour ; and, save her youth, I know 
nothing that could commend her to his Highness that he should 
so exalt her above her fellows. To my mind thou and not she art 
fit to share the royal bed ; and I nurse a grudge against the King 
for that he hath made this jade his Queen." And the eldest 
sister rejoined, " I likewise marvel beyond all measure ; and I 
swear that thy youth and beauty, thy well-shaped figure and lovely 
favour and goodliness of gifts past challenge or compare, might 
well have sufficed to win the King and have tempted him to wed 
and bed with thee and make thee his crowned Queen and Sovran 
Lady in lieu of taking to his arms this paltry strumpet. Indeed 
he hath shown no sense of what is right and just in leaving thee 
disappointed ; and on this account only the matter troubleth me 
with exceeding trouble." - And as the morn began to dawn 
Shahrazad held her peace till 

enfc of tfje gfcix )$un&tt& anU Sfcixtp-nintl) Kigfji. 

THEN said she: -- 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
two sisters took counsel each with other how they might abase 

496" Supplemental Nights. 

their youngest sister in the Shah's sight and cause her downfall 
and utter ruin. Day and night they conned over the matter in 
their minds and spoke at great length about it when they ever 
met together, and pondered endless plans to injure the Queen 
their sister, and if possible bring about her death ; but they 
could fix upon none. And, whilst they bore this despite and 
hatred towards her and diligently and deliberately sought the 
means of gratifying their bitter envy, hatred and malice, she on 
the other hand regarded them with the same favour and affection 
as she had done before marriage and thought only how to 
advantage their low estate. Now when some months of her 
wedded life had passed, the fair Queen was found to be with chile* 
whereof the glad tidings filled the Shah with joy ; and straightway 
he commanded all the people of the capital and throughout the 
whole Empire keep holiday with feasts and dancing and every 
manner jollity as became so rare and important an occasion. But 
as soon as the news came to the ears of the two Envious Sisters 
they were constrained perforce to offer their congratulations to the 
Queen ; and, after a long visit, as the twain were about to crave 
dismissal they said, " Thanks be to Almighty Allah, O our sister, 
who hath shown us this happy day. One boon have we to ask of 
thee : to wit, that when the time shall come for thee to be delivered 
of a child, we may assist as midwives at thy confinement, and be 
with thee and nurse thee for the space of forty days." The Queen 
in her gladness made reply, " O sisters mine, I fain would have it 
so ; for at a time of such need I know of none on whom to rely 
with such dependence as upon you. During my coming trial your 
presence with me will be most welcome and opportune ; but I can 
do only what thing the Shah biddeth nor can I do aught save by 
his leave. My advice is thus : Make known this matter to your 
mates who have always access to the royal presence, and let them 
personally apply for your attendance as midwives ; I doubt not but 
that the Shah will give you leave to assist me and remain by my 

Tht Two Sisters who envied their Cadet te. 497 

side, considering the fond relationship between us three." Then 
the two sisters returned home full of evil thoughts and malice, 
and told their wishes to their husbands who, in turn, bespake 
Khusrau Shah, and proffered their petition with all humility, little 
knowing what was hidden from them in the Secret Purpose. The 
King replied, " When I shall have thought the matter over in my 
mind, I will give you suitable orders." So saying he privately 
visited the Queen and to her said, " O my lady, an it please 
thee, methinks 'twould be well to summon thy sisters and secure 
their aidance, when thou shalt be labouring of child, in lieu of any 
stranger : and if thou be of the same mind as myself let me at once 
learn and take steps to obtain their consent and concert ere thy 
time arriveth. They will wait on thee with more loving care than 
any hired nurse and thou wilt find thyself the safer in their hands." 
Replied the Queen, " O my lord the Shah, I also venture to think 
that 'twould be well to have my sisters by my side and not mere 
aliens at such an hour." Accordingly he sent word to them and 
from that day they dwelt within the palace to make all ready for 
the expected confinement ; and on this wise they found means to 
carry out their despiteful plot which during so many days they had 
devised to scanty purpose. When her full tale of months had 
been told, the Banu was brought to bed of a man-child mar- 
vellous in beauty, whereat the fire of envy and hatred was kindled 
with redoubled fury in the sisters' breasts. So they again took 
counsel nor suffered ruth or natural affection to move their cruel 
hearts ; and presently, with great care and secrecy, they wrapped 
the new-born in a bit of blanket and putting him into a basket 
cast him into a canal which flowed hard by the Queen's apartment 1 

1 This ruthless attempt at infanticide was in accordance with the manners of the age 
nor has it yet disappeared from Rajput-land, China and sundry over-populous countries. 
Indeed it is a question if civilization may not be compelled to revive the law of Lycurgtu 
which forbade a child, male or female, to be brought up without the approbation of 
public officers appointed ad kot. One of the curses of the XlXth century is the increased 

498 Supplemental Nights. 

They then placed a dead puppy in the place of the prince and 
showed it to the other midwives and nurses, averring that the 
Queen had given birth to such abortion. When these untoward 
tidings reached the King's ears he was sore discomforted and 

waxed wroth with exceeding wrath. And as the morn began 

to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

cn& of $0 S>fx f^un&reb anU g&tentfetf) HigH 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 

King, inflamed with sudden fierceness, drew his sword and would 
have slain his Queen had not the Grand Wazir, who happened 
to be in his presence at the time, restrained his rage and diverted 
him from his unjust design and barbarous purpose. Quoth he, 
11 -Shadow of Allah upon earth, this mishap is ordained of the 
Almighty Lord whose will no man hath power to .gainsay. The 
Queen is guiltless of offence against thee, for what is born of her 
is born without her choice, and she indeed hath no hand therein." 
With this and other sage counsels he dissuaded his lord from 
carrying out his fell purpose and saved the guiltless Queen from a 
sudden and cruel death. Meanwhile the basket wherein lay the 
newly-born Prince was carried by the current into a rivulet which 
flowed through the royal gardens ; and, as the Intendant of the 

skill of the midwife and the physician, who are now able to preserve worthless lives and 
to bring up semi-abortions whose only effect upon the breed is increased degeneracy. 
Amongst the Greeks and ancient Arabs the Malthusian practice was- carried to excess. 
Poseidippus declares that in his day 

A man, although poor, will not expose his son ; 
But however rich, will not preserve his daughter. 

See the commentators' descriptions of the Wa'd al-Banat or burial of Mauuddt (living 
daughters), the barbarous custom of the pagan Arabs (Koran, chaps, xvi. and Ixxxi.) 
one of the many abominations, like the murderous vow of Jephtha, to which Al-Islam 
put a summary stop. (Ibn Khallikan, Hi. 609-616). For such outcast children reported 
to be monsters, see pp. 402-412 of Mr. Ciouston*s (r Asiatic and European versions 
of four of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales," printed by the Chaucer Society. 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 499 

pleasure grounds and pleasaunces chanced to walk along the bank, 
by the decree of Destiny he caught sight of the basket floating 
by, and he called a gardener, bidding him lay hold of it and bring 
it to him that he might sec what was therein. The man ran along 
the rivulet side ; and, with a long stick drawing the basket to land, 
showed it to the Intendant who opened it and beheld within a 
new-born babe, a boy of wondrous beauty wrapped in a bit of 
blanket ; at which sight he was astounded beyond measure of 
surprise. Now it so chanced that the Intendant, who was one of 
the Emirs and who stood high in favour with the Sovran, had no 
children : withal he never ceased offering prayers and vows to 
Almighty Allah that he might have a son to keep alive his 
memory and continue his name. Delighted at the sight he took 
home the basket with the babe and giving it to his wife said, " See 
how Allah hath sent to us this man-child which I just now found 
floating upon the waters ; and do thou apply thee forthright and 
fetch a wet-nurse to give him milk and nourish him ; and bring him 
up with care and tenderness as though he were thine own." So 
the Intendant's wife took charge of the child with great gladness 
and reared him with her whole heart, diligently as though born of 
her own womb ; nor did the Intendant say aught to any, or seek 
to find out whose might be the child lest haply some one claim 
and tke it from him. He was certified in his mind that the boy 
came from the Queen's quarter of the palace, but deemed it inex- 
pedient to make too strict enquiry concerning the matter; and 
he and his spouse kept the secret with all secrecy. A year after 
this the Queen gave birth to a second son, when her sisters, the 
Satanesses full of spite, did with this babe, even as they had done 
by the first : they wrapped it in a cloth and set it in a basket 
which they threw into the stream, then gave out that the Queen 
had brought forth a kitten. But once more, by the mercy of 
Allah Almighty, this boy came to the hands of that same Inten- 
dant of the gardens who carried him to his wife and placed him 

5OO Supplemental Nights. 

under her charge with strict injunctions to take care of the second 
foundling sedulously as she had done with the first. The Shah, 
enraged to hear the evil tidings, again rose up to slay the Queen ; but 
as before the Grand Wazir prevented him and calmed his wrath with 
words of wholesome rede and a second time saved the unhappy 
mother's life. And after another year had gone by the Banu was 
brought to bed and this time bore a daughter by whom the sisters 
did as they had done by her brothers : they set the innocent inside 
a basket and threw her into the stream ; and the Intendant found 
her also and took her to his wife and bade her rear the infant 
together with the other two castaways. Hereupon the Envious 
Sisters, wild with malice, reported that the Queen had given birth 
to a musk-ratling j 1 whereat King Khusrau could no longer stay 
his wrath and indignation. So he cried in furious rage to the 
Grand Wazir, "What, shall the Shah suffer this woman, who 
beareth naught but vermin and abortions, to share the joys 
of his bed ? Nay more, the King can no longer allow her to live, 
else she will fill the palace with monstrous births : in very sooth, 
she is herself a monster, and it behoveth us to rid this place of 
such unclean creature and accursed." So saying the Shah com- 
manded them do her to death ; but the ministers and high officers 
of estate who stood before the presence fell at the royal feet and 
besought pardon and mercy for the Queen." The Grand Wazir 
also said with folded hands, " O Shahinshah 2 O King of the 
kings thy slave would fain represent that 'tis not in accordance 

1 Hind. Chhuchhundar (Sorcx carulescens) which occurs repeatedly in verse ; ,g^ 
when speaking of low men advanced to high degree, the people say : 

Chhuchhiindar-ke sir-par Chambeli-ka tel. 
The Jasmine-oil on the musk-rat's head. 

In Galland the Sultanah is brought to bed of un mortem* de bois ; and his Indian trans- 
lator is more consequent. Halm, as has been seen, also has the mouse but Hahn could 
hardly have reached Hindostan. 

2 This title of Shahirtshah was first assumed by Ardashfr, the great Persian conqueror, 
after slaying the King of Ispahan, Ardawln. (Tabari u. 73.) 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 501 

with the course of justice or the laws of the land to take the life 
of a woman for no fault of her own. She cannot interfere with 
Destiny, nor can she prevent unnatural births such as have thrice 
betided her; and such mishaps have oftentimes befallen other 
women, whose cases call for compassion and not punishment. An 
the King be displeased with her then let him cease to live with 
her, and the loss of his gracious favour will be a penalty dire 
enough ; and, if the Shah cannot suffer the sight of her, then let 
her be confined in some room apart, and let her expiate her offence 
by alms deeds and charity until 'Izrafl, the Angel of Death, 
separate her soul from her flesh." Hearing these words of counsel 
from his aged Councillor, Khusrau Shah recognised that it had 
been wrong to slay the Queen, for that she could on no wise do 
away with aught that was determined by Fate and Destiny ; and 
presently he said to the Grand Wazir, " Her life is spared at thine 
intercession, O wise man and ware ; yet will the King doom her to 
a weird which, haply, is hardly less hard to bear than death. And 
now do thou forthright make ready, by the side of the Cathedral- 
mosque, a wooden cage with iron bars and lock the Queen therein 
as one would confine a ferocious wild beast. 1 Then every Mussul- 
man who wendeth his way to public prayers shall spit in her face 
ere he set foot within the fane, and if any fail to carry out this 
command he shall be punished in like manner. So place guards 
and inspectors to enforce obedience and let me hear if there be 
aught of gainsaying." The Wazir durst not make reply but 
carried out the Shah's commandments ; and this punishment in- 
flicted upon the blameless Queen had far better befitted her 
Envious Sisters. And -as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held 
her peace till 

1 This imprisonment of the good Queen reminds home readers of the " Cage of Clap- 
ham " wherein a woman with child was imprisoned in A.D. 1700, and which was noted 
by Sir George Grove as still in existence about 1830. 

Supplemental Nights. 

& of tfie 

THEN said she -- 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the cage 
was made ready with all speed ; and, when the forty days after 
purification of child-bed 1 had come to an end, the Banu was locked 
therein ; and, according to the King's commandment, all who came 
to prayer in the Great Mosque would first spit in her face. The 
hapless woman, well knowing that she was not worthy of this 
ignominy, bore her sufferings with all patience and fortitude ; nor 
were they few who deemed her blameless and undeserving to 
endure these torments and tortures inflicted upon her by the Shah ; 
and they pitied her and offered prayers and made vows for her 
release. Meanwhile the Intendant of the gardens and his wife 
brought up the two Princes and the Princess with all love and 
tenderness ; and, as the children grew in years, their love for these 
adopted ones increased in like proportion. They gave the eldest 
Prince the name Bahman, 2 and to his brother Parwez ; 3 and, as 
the maiden was rare of beauty and passing of loveliness and gra- 
ciousness, they called her Pen'zadah. 4 When the Princes became 
of years to receive instruction, the Intendant of the gardens 
appointed tutors and masters to teach them reading and writing 
and all the arts and sciences : the Princess also, showing like 
eagerness to acquire knowledge, was taught letters by the same 

1 Arab. Ayyam al-Nifds = the period of forty days after labour during which, 
according to Moslem law, a woman may not cohabit with her husband. 

2 kdarum et venerabile nomen in Persia ; meaning one of the Spirits that presides 
over beasts of burden ; also a king in general, the P.N. of an ancient sovereign, etc. 

3 This is the older pronunciation of the mod. (Khusrau) **Parvfz"; and I owe an 
apology to Mr. C. J. Lyall (Ancient Arabian Poetry) for terming his 4< Khusrau Parve^z " 
an "ugly Indianism" (The Academy, No. 100). As he says (Ibid. vol. x. 85), "the 
Indians did not invent for Persian words the sounds and <?, called majhiil (i.e. 'not 
known in Arabic ') by the Arabs, but received them at a time when these sounds were 
universally used in Persia. The substitution by Persians of i and *2 for ^ and 6 is quite 

* i.e. Fairy-born, the Ilapvcrans (Parysatis) of the Greeks which some miswrite 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. $03 

instructors, and soon could read and write with as perfect fluency 
and facility as could her brothers. Then they were placed under 
the most learned of the Philosophers and the Olema, who taught 
them the interpretation of the Koran and the sayings of the 
Apostle ; the science of geometry as well as poetry and history, 
and even the abstruse sciences and the mystic doctrines of the 
Enlightened ; and their teachers were astonished to find how soon 
and how far all three made progress in their studies and bid fair 
to outstrip even the sages however learned. Moreover, they all 
three were reared to horsemanship and skill in the chase, to shooting 
with shafts and lunging with lance and sway of sabre and jerking 
the Jerfd, with other manly and warlike sports. Besides all this 
the Princess Perizadah was taught to sing and play on various 
instruments of mirth and merriment, wherein she became the 
peerless pearl of her age and time. The Intendant was exceeding 
glad of heart to find his adopted children prove themselves such 
proficients in every branch of knowledge ; and presently, foras- 
much as his lodging was small and unfit for the growing family, 
he bought at a little distance from the city a piece of land 
sufficiently large to contain fields and meadows and copses. Here 
he fell to building a mansion of great magnificence ; and busied 
himself day and night with supervising the architects and masons 
and other artificers. He adorned the walls inside and out with 
sculptural work of the finest and paintings of the choicest, and he 
fitted every apartment with richest furniture. In the front of his 
mansion he bade lay out a garden and stocked it with scented 
flowers and fragrant shrubs and fruit trees whose produce was as 
that of Paradise. There was moreover a large park girt on all 
sides by a high wall wherein he reared game, both fur and feather, 
as sport for the two Princes and their sister. And when the mansion 
was finished and fit for habitation, the Intendant, who had faith- 
fully served the Shah for many generations of men, craved leave 
of his lord that he might bid adieu to the city and take up his 

504 Supplemental Nights. 

abode in his new country seat ; and the King, who had always 
looked upon him with the eye of favour, granted to him the 
required boon right heartily; furthermore, to prove his high 
opinion of his old servant and his services, he inquired of him if 
he had aught to request that it might be granted to him. Replied 
the other, " O my liege lord, thy slave desireth naught save that he 
may spend the remnant of his days under the shadow of the Shah's 
protection, with body and soul devoted to his service, even as I 
served the sire before the son." The Shah dismissed him with 
words of thanks and comfort, when he left the city and taking with 
him the two Princes and their sister, he carried them to his newly- 
built mansion. Some years before this time his wife had departed 
to the mercy of Allah, and he had passed only five or six months 
in his second home when he too suddenly fell sick and was 
admitted into the number of those who have found ruth. Withal 
he had neglected every occasion of telling his three foundlings 
the strange tale of their birth and how he had carried them to his 
home as castaways and had reared them as readings and had 
cherished them as his own children. But he had time to charge 
them, ere he died, that they three should never cease to live 
together in love and honour and affection and respect one towards 
other. The loss of their protector caused them to grieve with 
bitter grief, for they all thought he was their real father ; so they 
bewailed them and buried him as befitted ; after which the two 
brothers and their sister dwelt together in peace and plenty. But 
one day of the 1 days the Princes, who were full of daring and of 
highest mettle, rode forth a-hunting and Princess Perizadah was 

left alone at home when an ancient woman And as the morn 

began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

t& enfc of t&* Sbix f^untafc antj SbcbcntD-scconU Nigirt. 

THEN said she : I have heard, O auspicious King, that per- 
chance an ancient woman of the Moslems, a recluse and a devotee 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 505 

came to the door and begged leave to enter within and repeat her 
prayers, as it was then the canonical hour and -she had but time 
to make the Wuzu-ablution. Perizadah bade bring her and 
saluted her with the salam and kindly welcomed her ; then, when 
the holy woman had made an end of her orisons, the handmaids of 
the Princess, at her command, conducted her all through the house 
and grounds, and displayed to her the rooms with their furniture and 
fittings, and lastly the garden and orchard and game-park. She 
was well pleased with all she saw and said within herself, " The 
man who built this mansion and laid out these parterres and 
vergiers was verily an accomplished artist and a wight of mar- 
vellous skill." At last the slaves led her back to the Princess who, 
awaiting her return, was sitting in the belvedere ; and quoth she 
to the devotee, a Come, O good my mother, do thou sit beside me 
and make me happy by the company of a pious recluse whom I 
am fortunate enough to have entertained unawares, and suffer I 
listen to thy words of grace and thereby gain no small advantage 
in this world and the next. Thou hast chosen the right path and 
straight whereon to walk, and that which all men strive for and 
pine for." The holy woman would fain have seated herself at the 
feet of the Princess, but she courteously arose and took her by the 
hand and constrained her to sit beside her. Quoth she, " O my 
lady, mine eyes never yet beheld one so well-mannered as thou 
art: indeed, I am unworthy to sit with thee, natheless, as thou 
biddest, I will e'en do thy bidding." As they sat conversing each 
with other the slave-girls set before them a table whereon were 
placed some platters of bread and cakes with saucers full of fruits 
both fresh and dried, and various kinds of cates and sweetmeats. 
The Princess took one of the cakes and giving it to the good 
woman said, " O my mother, refresh thyself herewith and eat of the 
fruits such as thou likest. 'Tis now long since thou didst leave thy 
home and I trow thou hast not tasted aught of food upon the 
road" Replied the holy woman, ' O lady of gentle birth, I am 

Supplemental Nights. 

not wont to taste of dainty dishes such as these, but I can ill 
refuse thy provision, since Allah the Almighty deigneth send me 
food and support by so liberal and generous a hand as thine." 
And when they twain had eaten somewhat and cheered their 
hearts, the Princess asked the devotee concerning the manner of 
her worship and of her austere 4ife ; whereto she made due answer 
and explained according to her knowledge. The Princess then 
exclaimed, " Tell me, I pray thee, what thou thinkest of this 
mansion and the fashion of its building and the furniture and the 
appurtenances ; and say me is all perfect and appropriate, or is 
aught still lacking in mansion or garden ? " And she replied, 
'* Since thou deignest ask my opinion, I confess to thee that both the 
building and the parterres are finished and furnished to perfection ; 
and the belongings are in the best of taste and in the highest of ordi- 
nance. Still to my thinking there be three things here wanting,-which 
if thou hadst the place would be most complete." The Princess 
Perizadah adjured her saying, " O my aunt, I beseech thee tell me 
what three articles yet are lacking, that I may lose nor pains nor 
toil to obtain them ; " and, as the maiden pressed her with much 
entreaty, the devotee was constrained to tell her. Quoth she, " O 
gentle lady, the first thing is the Speaking-Bird, called Bulbul-i- 
hazdr-ddstdn ; ! he is very rare and hard to find but, whenever he 
poureth out his melodious notes, thousands of birds fly to him 
from every side and join him in his harmony. The next thing is 
the Singing-Tree, whose smooth and glossy leaves when shaken by 
the wind and rubbed one against other send forth tuneful tones 
which strike the ear like the notes of sweet-voiced minstrels, 
ravishing the hearts of all who listen. The third thing is the 

1 In Arab, usually shortened to " Hazdr " (bird of a thousand tales the 
Thousand), generally called '"Andalib :" Galland has Bulbulheaer and some of his 
translators debase it to Bulbulkezer. See vol. v. 148, and the Haza"rdasta"n of 
Kazwint (De Sacy, Chrest. iii. 413). These rarities represent the Rukh's egg in 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 507 

Golden-Water of transparent purity, whereof should but one drop 
be dripped into a basin and this be placed inside the garden it 
presently will fill the vessel brimful and will spout upwards in 
gerbes playing like a fountain that jets : moreover it never ceaseth 
plying, and all the water as it shooteth up falleth back again 
inside the basin, not one gout thereof being lost." Replied the 
Princess, " I doubt not but thou knowest for a certainty the very 
spot where these wondrous things are to be found ; and I pray 
thee tell me now the place and means whereby I may take action 
to obtain them." - And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad 
held her peace till 

en* of tfje &fx ?DtmUrc& an* JbtbentB'fyftt Xigfjt. 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
holy woman thus answered the Princess, " These three rarities are 
not to be found, save on the boundary-line that lieth between the 
land of Hind and the confining countries, a score of marches along 
the road that leadeth Eastwards from this mansion. Let him who 
goeth forth in quest of them ask the first man he meeteth on the 
twentieth stage concerning the spot where he may find the Speaking- 
Bird, the Singing-Tree and the Golden-Water ; and he will direct 
the seeker where to come upon all three." When she had made 
an end of speaking the Devotee, with many blessings and prayers 
and vows for her well-being, farewelled the lady Perizadah and 
fared forth homewards. The Princess, however, ceased not to 
ponder her words and ever to dwell in memory upon the relation 
of the holy woman who, never thinking that her hostess had asked 
for information save by way of curiosity, nor really purposed in 
mind to set forth with intent of finding the rarities, had heedlessly 
told all she knew and had given a clue to the discovery. But 
Perizadah kept these matters deeply graven on the tablets of her 

heart with firm resolution to follow the directions and, by all 
VOL. in. LL 

508 Supplemental Nights. 

means in her power, to gain possession of these three wonders. 
Withal, the more she reflected the harder appeared the enterprise, 
and her fear of failing only added to her unease. Now whilst she 
sat perplexed with anxious thought and anon terrified with sore 
affright, her brothers rode back from the hunting-ground ; and they 
marvelled much to see her sad of semblance and low-spirited, 
wondering the while what it was that troubled her. Presently 
quoth Prince Bahman, " O sister mine, why art thou so heavy of 
heart this day ? Almighty Allah forbid thou be ill in health or 
that aught have betided thee to cause thy displeasure or to make 
thee melancholy. Tell us I beseech thee what it is, that we may 
be sharers in thy sorrow and be alert to aid thee." The Princess 
answered not a word, but after long silence raised her head and 
looked up at her brothers ; then casting down her eyes she said in 
curt phrase that naught was amiss with her. Quoth Prince 
Bahman, " Full well I wot that there is a somewhat on thy mind 
which thou hesitatest to tell us ; and now hear me swear a strong 
oath that I will never leave thy side till thou shalt have told us 
what cause it is that troubleth thee. Haply thou art aweary of 
our affection and thou wouldst undo the fraternal tie which hath 
united us from our infancy." When she saw her brothers so dis- 
tressed and distraught, she was compelled to speak and said, 
" Albeit, O my dearlings, to tell you wherefore I am sad and 
sorrowful may cause you grief, still there is no help but I explain 
the matter to you twain. This mansion, which our dear father (who 
hath found ruth) builded for us, is perfect in every attribute nor 
lacketh it any condition of comfort or completion. Howbeit I 
have found out by chance this day that there are yet three things 
which, were they set within these walls, of the house and grounds, 
would make our place beyond compare, and in the wide world 
there would be naught with it to pair. These three things are the 
Speaking-Bird and the Singing-Tree and the Golden-Water ; and 
ever since I heard of them my heart is filled with extreme desire 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadilt*. 509 

to place them within our domain and excessive longing to obtain 
them by any means within my power. It now behoveth you help 
me with your best endeavour and to consider what person will aid 
me in getting possession of these rarities." Replied Prince Bahman, 
"My life and that of .my brother are at thy service to carry out 
thy purpose with heart and soul ; and, couldst thou give me but 
a clue to the place where these strange things are found, I would 
sally forth in quest of them at daybreak as soon as the morning 
shall morrow." When Prince Parwez understood that his brother 
was about to make this journey, he spake saying, " O my brother, 
thou art eldest of us, so do thou stay at home while I go forth to 
seek for these three things and bring them to our sister. And 
indeed it were more fitting for me to undertake a task which may 
occupy me for years." Replied Prince Bahman, " I have full con- 
fidence in thy strength and prowess, and whatso I am able to 
perform thou canst do as well as I can. Still it is my firm 
resolve to fare forth upon this adventure alone and unaided, and 
thou must stay and take care of our sister and our home." So 
next day Prince Bahman learned from the Princess the road 
whereon he was to travel and the marks and signs whereby to find 
the place. Presently, he donned armour and arms and bidding the 
twain adieu, he took horse and was about to ride forth with the 
stoutest of hearts, whereat Princess Perizadah's eyes brimmed with 
tears and in faltering accents she addressed him saying, " O dear 
my brother, this bitter separation is heart-breaking; and sore 
sorrowful am I to see thee part from us. This disunion and thine 
absence in a distant land cause me grief and woe far exceeding 
that wherewith I mourned and pined for the rarities wherefor thou 
quittest us. If only we might have some news of thee from day to 
day then would I feel somewhat comforted and consoled ; but now 

'tis clear otherwise and regret is of none avail.'' And as the 

morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

Supplemental lights. 

enfc of tfje S>fx f^untortf and &rf>etfottrft 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Prince 
Bahman made answer in these words : " O sister mine, I am 
fully determined in mind to attempt this derring-do : be thou 
not however anxious or alarmed, for Inshallah God willing 
I shall return successful and triumphant. After my departure 
shouldst thou at any time feel in fear for my safety, then by 
this token which I leave thee thou shalt know of my fate and 
lot, good or evil." Then, drawing from his waist-shawl a little 
hunting-knife like a whittle, he gave it to Princess Perizadah, 
saying, " Take now this blade and keep it ever by thee ; and 
shouldst thou at any day or hour be solicitous concerning my 
condition, draw it from its sheath ; and, if the steel be clean and 
bright as 'tis now then know that I am alive and safe and sound ; 
but an thou find stains of blood thereon then shalt thou know 
that I am slain, and naught remaineth for thee to do save to 
pray for me as for one dead." With these words of solace the 
Prince departed on his journey, and travelled straight along the 
road to India, turning nor to right hand nor to left but ever 
keeping the same object in view. Thus a score of days was 
spent in journeying from the land of Iran, and upon the twentieth 
he reached the end of his travel. Here he suddenly sighted 
an ancient man of frightful aspect sitting beneath a tree hard 
by his thatched hut wherein he was wont to shelter himself from 
the rains of spring and the heats of summer and the autumnal 
miasmas and the wintry frosts. So shotten in years was this 
Shaykh that hair and beard, mustachios and whiskers were white 
as snow, and the growth of his upper lip was so long and so 
thick that it covered and concealed his mouth, while his beard 
swept the ground and the nails of his hands and feet had grown 
to resemble the claws of a wild beast. Upon his head he wore a 

Thi Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 5' * 

broad-brimmed hat of woven palm-leaves like that of a Malabar 
fisherman, and all his remaining habit was a strip of matting 
girded around his waist. Now this Shaykh was a Darwaysh 
who for many years had fled the world and all Worldly pleasures ; 
who lived a holy life of poverty and chastity and other-worldliness 
whereby his semblance had become such as I, O auspicious King, 
have described to thee. From early dawn that day Prince Bahman 
had been watchful and vigilant, ever looking on all sides to descry 
some one who could supply him with information touching the 
whereabouts of the rarities he sought ; and this was the first human 
being he had sighted on that stage, the twentieth and last of his 
journey. So he rode up to him, being assured that the Shaykh 
must be the wight of whom the holy woman had spoken. Then 
Prince Bahman dismounting and making low obeisance to the 
Darwaysh, said, " O my father, Allah Almighty prolong thy years- 
and grant thee all thy wishes ! " Whereto the Fakir made answer 
but in accents so indistinct that the Prince could not distinguish a 
single word he said ; and presently Bahman understood that his 
moustache had on such wise closed and concealed his mouth 
that his utterance became indistinct and he only muttered when 
he would have spoken. He therefore haltered his horse to a tree 
and pulling out a pair of scissors said, " O holy man, thy lips are 
wholly hidden by this overlong hair ; suffer me, I pray thee, 
clip the bristling growth which overspreadeth thy face and which 
is so long and thick that thou art fearsome to behold ; nay, more 
like to a bear than to a human being." The Darwaysh with a nod 
consented, and when the Prince had clipped it and trimmed the 
growth, his face once more looked young and fresh as that of a 
man in the prime of youth. Presently quoth Bahman to him, 
" Would Heaven I had a mirror wherein to show thee thy face, 
so wouldst thou see how youthful thou seemest, and how thy 
favour hath become far more like that of folk than whilom it 
was." These flattering words pleased the Darwaysh who smiling 

j j 2 Supplemental Nights. 

said, " I thank thee much for this thy goodly service and kindly 
offices ; and, if in return I can do aught of favour for thee, I pray 
thee let me know, and I will attempt to satisfy thee in all things 
with my very heart and soul." Then said the Prince, " O holy 
man, I have come hither from far distant lands along a toilsome 
road in quest of three things ; to wit, a certain Speaking-Bird, 
a Singing-Tree and a Golden-Water ; and this know I for certain 
that they are all to be found hard by this site." - And as the 
morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

enfc of tftc &>ix untatj an& 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
Prince, turning to the Darwaysh, continued, " O Devotee, albeit 
well I wot that the three things I seek are in this land and near- 
hand, yet I know not the exact spot wherein to find them. An 
thou have true information concerning the place and will inform 
me thereof, I on my part will never forget thy kindness, and I 
shall have the satisfaction of feeling that this long and toilsome 
wayfare hath not been wholly vain." Hearing these words of 
the Prince, the Darwaysh changed countenance and his face waxed 
troubled and his colour wan ; then he bent his glance downwards 
and sat in deepest silence. Whereat the other ' said, " O holy 
father, dost thou not understand the words wherewith I have 
bespoken thee ? An thou art ignorant of the matter prithee let 
me know straightway that I may again fare onwards until such 
time as I find a man who can inform me thereof." After a long 
pause the Darwaysh made reply, "O stranger, 'tis true I ken 
full well the site whereof thou art in search ; but I hold thee 
dear in that thou hast been of service to me ; and I am loath 
for thine own sake to tell thee where to find that stead." And 
the Prince rejoined, " Say me, O Fakir, why dost thou withhold 
this knowledge from me, and wherefore art thou not lief to let 

The Two Sisters who envied their CacUtte. 513 

me learn Jt ? M Replied the other, " Tis a hard road to travel 
a,nd full of perils and dangers. Besides thyself many have come 
hither and have asked the path of me, and I refused to tell 
them, but they heeded not my warning and pressed me sore and 
compelled me to disclose the secret which I would have buried 
in my breast. Know, O my son, that all those braves have 
perished in their pride and not one of them hath returned to 
me safe and sound. Now, an thy life be dear to thee, follow my 
counsel and fare no further, but rather turn thee back without 
stay or delay and make for house and home and family." Hereto 
Prince Bahman, stern in resolution, made reply, " Thou hast 
after kindly guise and friendly fashion advised me with the best 
of advice ; and I, having heard all thou hast to say, do thank 
thee gratefully. But I reck not one jot or tittle of what dangers 
affront me, nor shall thy threats however fatal deter me from 
my purpose : moreover, if thieves or foemen haply fall upon me, 
I am armed at point and can and will protect myself, for I am 
certified that none can outvie me in strength and stowre." To 
this the Fakir made reply, "The beings who will cut thy path 
and bar thy progress to that place are unseen of man, nor will 
they appear to thee on any wise: how then canst thou defend 
thyself against them ? " And he replied, " So be it, still I fear 
not and I pray thee only show me the road thither." When 
the Darwaysh was assured that the Prince had fully determined 
in mind to attempt the exploit and would by no means turn or 
be turned back from carrying out his purpose, he thrust his hand 
into a bag which lay hard by and took therefrom a ball, and said, 
" Alas, O my son, thou wilt not accept my counsel and I needs 
must let thee follow thy wilful way. Take this ball and, mounting 
thy horse, throw it in front of thee, and as long as it shall roll 
onwards do thou ride after it, but when it shall stop at the 
hill-foot dismount from thy horse and throw the reins upon his 
neck and leave him alone, for he will stay there without moving 

5 1 4 Supplemental Nights. 

until such time as thou return. Then manfully breast the ascent, 
and on either side of the path, right and left, thou shjalt see a 
scatter of huge black boulders. Here the sound of many voices 
in confused clamour and frightful will suddenly strike thine 
ears, to raise thy wrath and to fill thee with fear and hinder thy 
higher course uphill. Have a heed that thou be not dismayed, 
also beware, and again I say beware, lest thou turn thy head 
at any time and cast a look backwards. An thy courage fail 
thee, or thou allow thyself one glance behind thee, thou shalt be 
transformed that very moment into a black rock ; for know thou, 
O Prince, that all those stones which thou shalt see strewn upon 
thy way were men whilome and braves like thyself, who went forth 
with intent to gain the three things thou seekest, but frightened at 
those sounds lost human shape and became black boulders. How- 
ever, shouldst thou reach the hill-top safe and sound, thou 
shalt find on the very summit a cage and perched therein the 
Speaking-Bird ready to answer all thy queries. So ask of him 
where thou mayest find the Singing-Tree and the Golden-Water, 
and he will tell thee all thou requirest. When thou shalt safely 
have seized all three thou wilt be free from further danger'; 
yet, inasmuch as thou hast not yet set out upon this journey 
give ear to my counsel. I beg of thee desist from this thy purpose 

and return home in peace whilst thou hast yet the power." 

And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

6e entr of tfje Six f^untofc an& &ebentg=sixt!) Jiiggt. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 

Prince made answer to the Darwaysh, " Until, O thou holy man, 
such time as I win to my purpose I will not go back ; no, never ; 
therefore adieu." So he mounted his horse and threw the ball m 
front of him ; and it rolled forward at racing-speed and he, with 
gaze Jntent thereupon, rode after it and did not suffer it to gain 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadtttt. $15 

upon him. When it had reached the hill whereof the Darwaysh 
spake, it ceased to make further way, whereupon the Prince dis- 
mounted and throwing the reins on his horse's neck left him and 
fared on afoot to the slope. As far as he could see, the line of his 
path from the hill-foot to the head was strown with a scatter of 
huge black boulders ; withal his heart felt naught of fear. He had 
not taken more than some four or five paces before a hideous din 
and a terrible hubbub of many voices arose, even as the Darwaysh 
had forewarned him. Prince Bahman, however, walked on valiantly 
with front erect and fearless tread, but he saw no living thing and 
heard only the Voices 1 sounding all around him. Some said, " Who 
is yon fool man and whence hath he come ? Stop him, let him 
not pass !" Others shouted out, " Fall on him, seize this zany and 
slay him ! " Then the report waxed louder and louder still, likest 
to the roar of thunder, and many Voices yelled out, " Thief 1 
Assassin ! Murtherer ! " Another muttered in taunting undertones, 
" Let him be, fine fellow that he is ! Suffer him to pass on, for he 
and he only shall get the cage and the Speaking-Bird." The Prince 
feared naught but advanced hot foot with his wonted nerve and 
spirit ; presently, however, when the Voices kept approaching nearer 
and nearer to him and increased in number on every side, he was 
sore perplexed. His legs began to tremble, he staggered and in 
fine overcome by fear he clean forgot the warning of the Darwaysh 
and looked back, whereat he was incontinently turned to stone 
like the scores of knights and adventurers who had foregone him. 
Meantime the Princess Perizadah ever carried the hunting-knife, 
which Bahman her brother had given her, sheathed as it was in her 

1 These disembodied "voices" speaking either naturally or through instruments are 
recognised phenomenon of the so-called "Spiritualism/' See p. 115 of "Supra- 
mundane Facts," &c., edited by T. J. Nichols, M.D., Ac., London, Pitman, 1865. I 
venture to remark that the medical treatment by Mesmerism, Braidism and hypnotics, 
which was violently denounced and derided in 1850, is in 1887 becoming a part of the 
regular professional practice and forms another item in the long list of the Fallacies of 
the Faculty and the Myopism of the "Scientist." 

5 1 6 Supplemental Nights. 

maiden zone. She had kept it there ever since he set out upon 
his perilous expedition, and whenever she felt disposed she would 
bare the blade and judge by its sheen how fared her brother. Now 
until that day when he was transmewed to stone she found it, as 
often as she looked at it, clean and bright ; but on the very evening 
when that evil fate betided him perchance Prince Parwez said to 
Perizadah, " O sister mine, give me I pray thee the hunting-knife 
that I may see how goeth it with our brother." She took it from 
her waist-belt and handed it to him ; and as soon as he unsheathed 
the knife lo and behold ! he saw gouts of gore begin to drop from 
it. Noting this he dashed the hunting-knife down and burst out 
into loud lamentations, whilst the Princess who divined what had 
happened shed a flood of bitter tears and cried with sighs and 
sobs, " Alas, O my brother, thou hast given thy life for me. Ah, 
woe is me and well-away ! why did I tell thee of the Speaking* 
Bird and the Singing-Tree and the Golden-Water ? Wherefore 
did I ask that holy woman how she liked our home, and hear of 
those three things in answer to my question ? Would to Heaven 
she had never crossed our threshold and darkened our doors ! 
Ungrateful hypocrite, dost thou requite me on such wise for the 
favour and the honour I was fain to show thee ; and what made 
me ask of thee the means whereby to win these things ? If now I 
obtain possession of them what will they advantage me, seeing 
that my brother Bahman is no more ? What should I ever do with 
them ? " Thus did Perizadah indulge her grief bewailing her sad 
fate ; while Parwez in like manner moaned for his brother Bahman 
with exceeding bitter mourning. At last the Prince, who despite 
his sorrow was assured that his sister still ardently desired to 
possess the three marvels, turned to Perizadah and said, " It be- 
hoveth me, O my sister, to set out forthright and to discover 
whether Bahman our brother met his death by doom of Destiny, 
or whether some enemy have slain him ; and if he hath been killed 
then must I take full vengeance on his murtherer." Perizadah 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadet te. 517 

besought him with much weeping and wailing not to leave her, 
and said, " O joy of my heart, Allah upon thee, follow not in the 
footsteps of our dear departed brother nor quit me in order to 
attempt a journey so rife in risks. I care naught for those things 
in my fear lest I lose thee also while attempting such enterprise." 
But Prince Parwez would on no wise listen to her lament and next 
day took leave of her, but ere he fared she said to him, " The 
hunting-knife which Bahman left with me was the means of in- 
forming us concerning the mishap which happened to him ; but, 
say me how shall I know what happeneth to thee ? " Then he 
produced a string of pearls which numbered one hundred and said, 
" As long as thou shalt see these pearls all parted one from other 
and each running loose upon the string, then do thou know that I 
am alive ; but an thou shouldst find them fixed and adhering 
together then be thou ware that 1 am dead." The Princess taking 
the string of pearls hung it around her neck, determined to ob- 
serve it hour after hour and find out how it fared with her second 
brother. After this Prince Parwez set out upon his travels and at 
the twentieth stage came to the same spot where Bahman had 
found the Darwaysh and saw him there in like condition. Then, 
after saluting him with the salam, the Prince asked, " Canst thou 
tell me where to find the Speaking-Bird and the Singing-Tree and 
the Gold en- Water ; and by what manner of means I may get 
possession of them ? An thou can I pray thee inform me of this 
matter." - And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her 
peace till 

enDi of tfje t'x f^un&reto an) $rbtmp-*tbenti) 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
Darwaysh strave to stay Prince Parwez from his design and shewed 
him all the dangers on the way. Quoth he, " Not many days ago 
one like unto thee in years and in features came hither and 

5 1 8 Supplemental Nights. 

enquired of me concerning the matter thou now. seekest. I warned 
him of the perils of the place and would have weaned him from 
his wilful ways, but he paid no wise heed to my warnings and 
refused to accept my counsel. He went off with full instructions 
from me how to find those things he sought ; but as yet he hath 
not returned, and doubtless he also hath perished like the many 
who preceded him upon that perilous enterprise." Then said 
Prince Parwez, " O holy father, I know the man of whom thou 
speakest, for that he was my brother ; and I learned that he was 
dead, but have no inkling of the cause whereby he died." Replied 
the Darwaysh, (< O my lord, I can inform thee on this matter ; he 
hath been transmewed into a black stone, like the others of whom 
I just now spake to thee. If thou wilt not accept my advice and 
act according to my counsel thou also surely shalt perish by the 
same means as did thy brother ; and I solemnly forewarn thee to 
desist from this endeavour." Prince Parwez having pondered 
these words, presently made reply, " O Darwaysh, I thank thee 
again and again and am much beholden to thee in that thou art 
fain of my welfare and thou hast given me the kindest of counsel 
and the friendliest of advice ; nor am I worthy of such favours 
bestowed upon a stranger. But now remaineth naught for me to 
beseech save that thou wilt point out the path, for I am fully 
purposed to fare forwards and on no wise to desist from my 
endeavour, I pray thee favour me with full instructions for the 
road even as thou favouredst my brother." Then said the Dar- 
waysh, " An thou wilt not lend ear to my warnings and do as I 
desire thee, it mattereth to me neither mickle nor little. Choose 
for thyself and I by doom of Destiny must perforce forward thy 
attempt and albeit, by reason of my great age and infirmities, I 
may not conduct thee to the place I will not grudge thee a guide." 
Then Prince Parwez mounted his horse and the Darwaysh taking 
one of many balls from out his scrip placed it in the youth's hands, 
directing him the while what to do, as he had counselled his 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 

brother Bah man ; and, after giving him much advice and man/ 
warnings he ended with saying, " O my lord, have a heed not to be 
perplexed and terrified by the threatening Voices, 1 and sounds from 
unseen beings, which shall strike thine ear ; but advance dauntless 
to the hill-top where thou shalt find the cage with the Speaking- 
Bird and the Singing-Tree and the Golden -Water." The Fakir 
then bid him adieu with words of good omen and the Prince set 
forth. He threw the ball on the ground before him and, as it rolled 
up the path, he urged his horse to keep pace with it. But when he 
reached the hill-foot and saw that the ball had stopped and lay still, 
he dismounted forthright and paused awhile ere he should begin to 
climb and conned well in his mind the directions, one and all, given 
to him by the Darwaysh. Then, with firm courage and fast resolve, 
he set out afoot to reach the hill-top. But hardly had he begun 
to climb before he heard a voice beside him threatening him in 
churlish tongue and crying, " O youth of ill-omen, stand still that I 
may trounce thee for this thine insolence." Hearing these insulting 
words of the Invisible Speaker, Prince Parwez felt his blood boil 
over ; he could not refrain his rage and in his passion he clean forgot 
the words of wisdom wherewith the Fakir had warned him. He 
seized his sword and drawing it from the scabbard, turned about to 
slay the man who durst insult him on such wise ; but he saw no 
one and, in the act of looking back both he and his horse became 
black stones. Meanwhile the Princess ceased not at all hours of 
the day and watches of the night to consult the string of pearls 
which Parwez had left her : she counted them overnight when she 
retired to rest, she slept with them around her neck during the 
hours of darkness, and when she awoke at the dawn of day she 
first of all consulted them and noted their condition. Now at the 
very hour when her second brother was turned to stone she found 

1 I may also note that the Hit if," or invisible Speaker, which must be subjects 
ore often than objective, is a common-place of Moslem tbaoraaturgy. 

Supplemental Nights. 

the pearls sticking one to other so close together that she might 
not move a single bead apart from its fellows and she knew thera- 

by that Prince Parwez also was lost to her for ever. And as 

the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

tf)E cn& of tf)* g>ft f^untwli an& Sb*bentg*et$f)ti) Nigfit. 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 

Princess Perizadah was sore grieved at so sudden a blow and said 
to herself, " Ah ! woe is me and well-away ! How bitter will be 
living without the love of such brothers whose youthtide was 
sacrificed for me ! 'Tis but right that I share their fate whate'er 
be my lot ; else what shall I have to say on the Day of Doom 
and the Resurrection of the Dead and the Judgment of Man- 
kind ? " Wherefore next morning, without further let or stay, 
she donned disguise of man's attire ; and, warning her women 
end slaves that she would be absent on an errand for a term of 
days during which they would be in charge of the house and 
goods, she mounted her hackney and set out alone and unat- 
tended. Now, inasmuch as she was skilled in horsemanship 
and had been wont to accompany her brothers when hunting and 
hawking, she was better fitted than other women to bear the toils 
and travails of travel. So on the twentieth day she arrived safe 
and sound at the hermitage-hut where, seeing the same Shaykh, 
she took seat beside him and after salaming to him and greeting 
him she asked him, " O holy father, suffer me to rest and refresh 
myself awhile in this site of good omen ; then deign point out to 
me, J pray thee, the direction of the place, at no far distance 
herefrom, wherein are found a certain Speaking-Bird and a Singing- 
Tree and a Golden-Water. An thou wilt tell me I shall deem 
this the greatest of favour." Replied the Darwaysh, " Thy voice 
revealeth to me that thou art a woman and no man, albeit attired 
in male's apparel. Well I wot the stead .whereof thou speakest 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 521 

and which containeth the marvellous things thou hast named. 
But say me, what is thy purpose in asking me ? " The Princess 
made reply, " I have been told many a tale anent these rare 
and wondrous things, and I would fain get possession of them and 
bear them to my home and make them its choicest adornments." 
And said the Fakir, " O my daughter, in very truth these matters 
are exceeding rare and admirable : right fit are they for fair ones 
like thyself to win and take back with thee, but thou hast little 
inkling of the dangers manifold and dire that encompass them. 
Better far were it for thee to cast away this vain thought and go 
back by the road thou earnest." Replied the Princess, " O holy 
father and far-famed anchorite, I come from a distant land where- 
to I will nevermore return except after winning my wish ; no, 
never ! I pray thee tell me the nature of those dangers and what 
they be, that hearing thereof my heart may judge if I have or have 
not the strength and the spirit to meet them." Then the Shaykh 
described to the Princess all the risks of the road as erst he had 
informed Princes Bahman and Parwez ; and he ended with saying, 
14 The dangers will display themselves as soon as thou shalt begin 
to climb the hill-foot and shall not end till such time as thou wilt 
have reached the hill-head where is the home of the Speaking- 
Bird. Then, if thou be fortunate enough to seize him, he will 
direct thee where to find the Singing-Tree and the Golden-Water. 
All the time thou climbest the hill, Voices from throats unseen 
and accents fierce and fell shall resound in thine ears. Further- 
more, thou shalt see black rocks and boulders strewn upon thy 
path; and these, thou must know, are the transformed bodies 
of men who with exceeding courage attempted the same enter- 
prise, but filled with sudden fear and tempted to turn and to look 
backwards were changed into stones. Now do thou steadily bear 
in mind what was their case. At the first they listened to those 
fearful sounds and cursings with firm souls, but anon their hearts 
and minds misgave them, or, haply, they fumed with fury to hear 

Supplemental Nights, 

the villain words addressed to them and they turned about and 
gazed behind them, whereat both men and horses became black 
boulders." But when the Darwaysh had told her every whit, the 
Princess made reply, " From what thou sayest it seemeth clear 
to me that these Voices can do nothing but threaten and frighten 
by their terrible din ; furthermore that there is naught to prevent 
a man climbing up the hill, nor is there any fear of any one 
attacking him ; all he hath to do is on no account to look behind 
him." And after a short pause she presently added, t( O Fakir, 
albeit a woman yet I have both nerve and thews to carry me 
through this adventure. I shall not heed the Voices nor be 
enraged thereat, neither will they have any power to dismay me : 
moreover, I have devised a device whereby my success on this 
point is assured/' " And what wilt thou do ?" asked he, and 
she answered, " I will stop mine ears with cotton so may not 
my mind be disturbed and reason perturbed by hearing those 
awesome sounds." The Fakir marvelled with great marvel and 
presently exclaimed, "O my lady, methinks thou art destined 
to get possession of the things thou seekest. This plan hath not 
occurred to any hitherto l and hence it is haply that one and all 
have failed miserably and have perished in the attempt. Take 
good heed to thyself however, nor run any risk other than the 
enterprise requireth." She replied, " I have no cause for fear 
since this one and only danger is before me to prevent happy 
issue. My heart doth bear me witness that I shall surely gain 
the guerdon wherefor I have undertaken such toil and trouble. 
But now do thou tell me what I must do, and whither to win my 
wish I must wend." The Darwaysh once more besought her to 
return home, but Perizadah refused to listen and remained as firm 
and resolute as before ; so when he saw that she was fully bent 
upon carrying out her purpose he exclaimed, "Depart, O my 

It may have been borrowed from Ulysses and the Siren*. 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadett*. 523 

daughter, in the peace of Almighty Allah and His blessing ; and 
may He defend thy youth and beauty from all danger." Then 
taking from his bag a ball he gave it her and said, " When thou 
art seated in saddle throw this before thee and follow it whitherso 
it lead thee ; and when it shall stop at the hill-foot then dismount 
and climb the slope. What will happen after I have already told 
thee," - And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her 
peace till 

en* of tfj? Sfcix ^unfcrefc an* Sbttentg.mntf) Xigfjt. 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
Princess after farewelling the Fakir straightway bestrode her steed 
and threw the ball in front of his hooves as she had been bidden 
do. It rolled along before her in the direction of the hill and she 
urged her hackney to keep up with it, until reaching the hill it 
suddenly stopped. Hereat the Princess dismounted forthwith and 
having carefully plugged both her ears with cotton, began to breast 
the slope with fearless heart and dauntless soul ; and as soon as 
she had advanced a few steps a hubbub of voices broke out all 
around her, but she heard not a sound, by reason of her hearing 
being blunted by the cotton-wool. Then hideous cries arose with 
horrid din, still she heard them not ; and at last they grew to a 
storm of shouts and shrieks and groans and moans flavoured with 
foul language such as shameless women use when railing one at 
other. She caught now and then an echo of the sounds but recked 
naught thereof and only laughed and said to herself, " What care I 
for their scoffs and jeers and fulsome taunts ? Let them hoot on 
and bark and bay as they may : this at least shall not turn me 
from my purpose." As she approached the goal the path became 
perilous in the extreme and the air was so filled with an infernal 
din and such awful sounds that even Rustam would 'have quailed 

5 24 Supplemental Nights. 

thereat and the bold spirit of Asfandiyar 1 have quaked with terrof? 
The Princess, however, pressed on with uttermost speed and daunt- 
less heart till she neared the hill-top and espied above her the cage 
in which the Speaking-Bird was singing with melodious tones; 
but, seeing the Princess draw nigh, he broke out despite his puny 
form in thundering tones and cried, "Return, O fool: hie thee 
back nor dare come nearer." Princess Perizadah heeded not his 
clamour a whit but bravely reached the hill-top, and running over 
the level piece of ground made for the cage and seized it saying, 
" At last I have thee and thou shalt not escape me." She then 
pulled out the cotton-wool wherewith she had stopped her ears, 
and heard the Speaking-Bird reply in gentle accents, "O lady 
valiant and noble, be of good cheer for no harm or evil shall 
betide thee, as hath happened to those who essayed to make me 
their prize. Albeit I am encaged I have much secret knowledge 
of what happeneth in the world of men and I am content to 
become thy slave, and for thee to be my liege lady. Moreover I 
am more familiar with all that concerneth thee even than thou art 
thyself ; and one day of the days I will do thee a service which shall 
deserve thy gratitude. What now is thy command ? Speak that 
I may fulfil thy wish." Princess Perizadah was gladdened by 
these words, but in the midst of her joy she grieved at the thought 
of how she had lost her brothers whom she loved with a love so 
dear, and anon she said to the Speaking-Bird, " Full many a thing 
I want, but first tell me if the Golden-Water, .of which I have 
heard so much, be nigh unto this place and if so do thou show me 
where to find it." The Bird directed her accordingly and the 
Princess took a silver flagon she had brought with her and filled it 
brimful from the magical fount. Then quoth she to the Bird, 
" The third and last prize I have come to seek is the Singing- 
Tree : discover to me where that also can be found." The Bird 

1 Two heroes of the Shahnameh and both the types of reckless daring. The mono- 
maciiy or duel between these braves lasted through two days. 

Tkt Two Sisters who envied tkiir Cadette. $25 

replied, "O Princess of fair ones, behind thy back in yonder clump 
that lieth close at hand groweth the Tree ; " so she went forthright 
to the copse and found the Tree she sought singing with sweetest 
toned voice. But inasmuch as it was huge in girth she returned 
to her slave the Bird and said, " The Tree indeed I found but 'tis 
lofty and bulky ; how then shall I pull it up ? " and he made 
answer, " Pluck but a branchlet of the Tree and plant it in thy 
garden : 'twill at once take root and in shortest time be as gross 
and fair a growth as that in yonder copse." So the Princess broke 
off a twig, and now that she had secured the three things, whereof 
the holy woman spake to her, she was exceeding joyful and turning 
to the Bird said, " I have in very deed won my wish, but one thing 
is yet wanting to my full satisfaction. My brothers who ventured 
forth with this same purpose are lying hereabouts turned into black 
stones ; and I fain would have them brought to life again and the 
twain return with me in all satisfaction and assurance of success. 
Tell me now some plan whereby mine every desire may be fulfilled." 
And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

2Tfje en* of tfjc ftix IQunUrefc nnfc (ig!)tt'etf) Xtgfjt. 

THEN said she: 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 

Speaking-Bird replied, " O Princess, trouble not thyself, the thing 
is easy. Sprinkle some of the Golden-Water from the flagon upon 
the black stones lying round about, and by virtue thereof each and 
every shall come to life again, thy two brothers as well as the others." 
So Princess Perizadah's heart was set at rest and taking the three 
prizes with her she fared forth and scattered a few drops from the 
silver flagon upon each black stone as she passed it when, lo and 
behold ! they came to life as men and horses. Amongst them were 
her brothers whom she at once knew and falling on their necks she 
embraced them, and asked in tones of surprise, " O my brothers, 
what do ye here? " To this they answered, " We lay fast asleep." 

526 Supplemental Nights. 

Quoth she, " Strange indeed that ye take delight in slumber away 
from me and ye forget the purpose wherefor ye left me ; to wit, the 
winning of the Speaking-Bird and the Singing-Tree and the 
Golden-Water. Did ye not see this place all bestrewn with dark 
hued rocks ? Look now and say if there be aught left of them. 
These men and horses now standing around us were all black 
stones as ye yourselves also were ; but, by the boon of Almighty 
Allah, all have come to life again and await the signal to depart. 
And if now ye wish to learn by what strange miracle both ye and 
they have recovered human shape, know ye that it hath been 
wrought by virtue of a water contained in this flagon which I 
sprinkled on the rocks with leave of the Lord of all Living. 
When I had gained possession of this cage and its Speaking-Bird, 
and also of the Singing-Tree, a wand whereof ye see in my hand, 
and lastly of the Golden-Water, I would not take them home with 
me unless ye twain could also bear me company ; so I asked of 
this Bird the means whereby ye could be brought to life again. 
He made me drop some drops of the Golden-Water on the 
boulders and when I had done this ye two like all the others 
returned to life and to your proper forms." Hearing these her 
words the Princes Bahman and Parwez thanked and praised their 
sister Perizadah ; and all the others she had saved showered thanks 
and blessings on her head saying with one accord, " O our lady, we 
are now thy slaves ; nor can a life-long service repay the debt of 
gratitude we owe thee for this favour thou hast shown us. Com- 
mand and we are ready to obey thee with our hearts and our 
souls." Quoth Perizadah, " The bringing back to life of these my 
brothers were my aim and purpose, and in so doing ye too have 
profited thereby ; and I accept your acknowledgments as another 
pleasure. But now do ye mount each and every man his horse 
and ride back by the way ye came to your homes in Allah's 
peace." On this wise the Princess dismissed them and made her- 
self also ready to depart; but, as she was about to bestride her 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadet te. 527 

steed, Prince Bahman asked permission of her that he might 
hold in hand the cage and ride in front of her. She answered, 
* Not so, O brother mine ; this Bird is now my slave and I will 
carry him myself. An thou wilt, taice thou this twig with thee, 
but hold the cage only till I am seated in saddle." She then 
mounted her hackney and, placing the cage before her on the 
pommel, bade her brother Parwez take charge of the Golden- 
Water in the silver flagon and carry it with all care and the Prince 
did her bidding without gainsaying. And when they all were 
ready to ride forth, including the knights and the squires whom 
Perizadah had brought to life by sprinkling the Water the Princess 
turned to them and said, " Why delay we our departure and how 
is it that none offereth to lead us ? " But as all hesitated she gave 
command, "Now let him amongst your number whose noblesse 
and high degree entitle him to such distinction fare before us and 
show us the way." Then all with one accord replied, " O Princess 
of fair ones, there be none amongst us worthy of such honour, nor 
may any wight dare to ride before thee." So when she saw that 
none amongst them claimed pre-eminence or right of guidance f 
and none desired to take precedence of the rest, she made excuse 
and said, " O my lords, 'tis not for me by right to lead the way, 
but since ye order I must needs obey." Accordingly she pushed 
on to the front, and after came her brothers and behind them the 
rest And as they journeyed on all desired to see the holy man, 
and thank him for his favours and friendly rede, but when they 
reached the spot where he dwelt they found him dead, and they 
knew not if old age had taken him away, or if he perished in his 
pride because the Princess Perizadah had found and had carried off 
the three things whereof he had been appointed by Destiny guard 

and guide. And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held 

her peace till 

f 28 Supplemental NigkU. 

We end oC tje g>ix f^un&retr and 

THEN said she : 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that all the 

company rode on, and as each one arrived at the road which led him 
to his natal land he took leave of the Lady Perizadah and went his 
way, until all were gone and the Princess and her brothers were 
the only left. At last they reached their journey's end safe and 
sound, and on entering their mansion Perizadah hung the cage 
inside the garden hard by the belvedere and no sooner did the 
Speaking-Bird begin to sing than flights .of ringdoves and bulbuls 
and nightingales and skylarks and parrots and other songsters came 
flocking around him from afar and anear. Likewise she set the twig, 
which she had taken from the Singing-Tree, in a choice parterre 
also hard by the belvedere, and forthright it took root and put forth 
boughs and buds and grew goodly in growth, till itbecame a trunk 
as large as that from which she had plucked the twig, whilst from 
its leafage went forth bewitching sounds rivalling the music of 
the parent tree. She lastly bid them carve her a basin of pure 
white marble and set it in the centre of the pleasure grounds ; 
then she poured therein the Golden-Water and forthright it filled 
the bowl and shot upwards like a spouting fountain some twenty 
feet in height ; moreover the gerbes and jets fell back whence they 
came and not one drop was lost : whereby the working of the 
waters was unbroken and ever similar. Now but few days passed 
ere the report of these three wonders was bruited abroad and 
flocked the folk daily from the city to solace themselves with the 
sight, and the gates stood always open wide and all who came had 
entrance to the house and gardens and free leave to walk about at 
will and see these rarities which affected them with admiration and 
delight. Then also, as soon as both the Princes had recovered 
from the toils of travel, they began to go a-hunting as heretofore ; 
and it chanced one day they rode forth several miles from home 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 529 

and were both busied in the chase, when the Shah of Iran-land 
came by decree of Destiny to the same place for the same purpose. 
The Princes, seeing a band of knights and huntsmen drawing near, 
were fain to ride home and to avoid such meeting; so they left the 
hunting-grounds and turned them homewards. But as Fate and 
lot would have it they hit upon the very road whereby King 
Khusrau Shah was coming, and so narrow was the path that they 
could not avoid the horsemen by wheeling round and wending 
another way. So they drew rein perforce and dismounting they 
salamed and did obeisance to the Shah and stood between his 
hands with heads bent low. The Sovran, seeing the horses' fine 
trappings and the Princes' costly garments, thought that the two 
youths were in the suite of his Wazirs and his Ministers of state 
and much wished to look upon their faces ; he therefore bade them 
raise their heads and stand upright in the presence and they obeyed 
his bidding with modest mien and downcast eyes. He was 
charmed to behold their comeliness of favour and their graceful 
forms and their noble air and their courtly mien ; and, after gazing 
at them for some time in not a little wonder and admiration, he 
asked them who they were and what might be their names and 
where they abode. Hereto Prince Bahman made reply, " O Asy- 
lum of the Universe, we are the sons of one whose life was spent 
in serving the Shah, the Intendant of the royal gardens and 
pleasaunces. As his days drew to a close he builded him a home 
without the town for us to dwell in till we should grow to man's 
estate and become fit to do thy Highness suit and service and 
carry out thy royal commands." The Shah furthermore asked 
them, " How is it that ye go a-hunting ? This is a special sport 
of Kings and is not meant for the general of his subjects and 
dependants." Prince Bahman rejoined, " O Refuge of the World, 
we yet are young in years and being brought up at home we 
know little of courtly customs ; but, as we look to bear arms in 
the armies of the Shah we fain would train our bodies to toil and 

530 Supplemental Nights. 

moil." This answer was honoured by the royal approof and the 
King rejoined, "The Shah would see how ye deal with noble 
game ; so choose ye whatever quarry ye will and bring it down in 
the presence." The Princes hereat remounted their horses and joined 
the Sovran ; and when they reached the thickmost of the forest, 
Prince Bahman started a tiger and Prince Parwez rode after a 
bear; and the twain used their spears with such skill. and good 
will that each killed his quarry and laid it at the Shah's feet. 
Then entering the wood again Prince Bahman slew a bear, and 
Prince Parwez a tiger 1 and did as before ; but when they would 
have ridden off the third time the King forbade them saying, 
" What ! would ye strip the royal preserve of all the game ? Thk 
be enough and more than enough, the Shah wished only to put 
your valour to the proof and having seen it with his own eyes he 
is fully satisfied. Come now with us and stand before us as we sit 
at meat.*' Prince Bahman made reply, " We are not worthy of the 
high honour and dignity wherewith thou favourest us thy humble 
servants. We dutifully and humbly petition thy Highness to hold 
us excused for this day ; but if the Asylum of the Universe deign 
appoint some other time thy slaves will right gladly execute thy 

auspicious orders." And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad 

held her peace till 


THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that Khusrau 
Shah, astonished at their refusal, asked the cause thereof when 
Prince Bahman answered, " May I be thy sacrifice, 2 O King of 

1 The " Bigh" or royal tiger, is still found in the jungles of Maxenderdn and other 
regions of Northern Persia. 

2 In addressing the Shah every Persian begins with the formula " Kurbdn-at bdsham * 
= may I become thy Corban or sacrifice. For this word (Kurbin) see vol. viii. 16. 

The Two Sisters who envitd their Cadette. 531 

kings, we have at home an only sister ; and all three are bound 
together with bonds of the fondest affection ; so we brothers go 
not anywhere without consulting her nor doth she aught save 
according to our counsel." The King was pleased to see such 
fraternal love and union and presently quoth he, " By the head of 
the Shah, 1 he freely giveth you leave to go to-day : consult your 
sister and meet the Shadow of Allah 1 to-morrow at this hunting- 
ground, and tell him what she saith and if she be content to let 
you twain come and wait upon the Shah at meat." So the Princes 
farewelled and prayed for him ; then rode back home ; but they 
both forgot to tell their sister how they had fallen in with the King ; 
and of all that passed between them they remembered not one 
word.' Next day again they went ahunting and on returning from 
the chase the Shah enquired of them, " Have ye consulted with 
your sister if ye may serve the King, and what saith she thereto ? 
Have ye obtained permission from her r On hearing these words 
the Princes waxed aghast with fear; the colour of their faces 
changed, and each began to look into the other's eyes. Then 
Bahman said, "Pardon, O Refuge of the World, this our trans- 
gression. We both forgot the command and remembered not to 
tell our sister." Replied the King, " It mattereth naught ! ask her 
to-day and bring me word to-morrow." But it so happened that on 
that day also they forgot the message yet the King was not annoyed 
at their shortness of memory, but taking from his pocket three little 

1 The King in Persia always speaks of himself in the third person and swears by hit 
own blood and head, soul, life and death. The form of oath is ancient : Joseph, the first 
(bat not the last) Jew-financier of Egypt, emphasises his speech " by the life of Pharaoh." 
(Gen. xiii. 15, 16). 

3 Another title of the Shah, making him quasi-divine, at any rate the nearest to the 
Almighty, like the Czar and the Emperor of China. Hence the subjects bow to him 
with the body at right angles as David did to Saul (i Sam. xxiv. 8) or fall upon the face 
like Joshua (v. 14). 

* A most improbable and absurd detail : its sole excuse is the popular superstition of 
44 blood speaking to blood." The youths being of tbe royal race felt thai they could 
take unwarrantable liberties. 

Supplemental Nights. 

balls of gold, and tying them in a kerchief of silk, he handed them 
to Prince Bahman saying, " Put these balls in thy waist shawl, so 
shalt thou not forget to ask thy sister ; and if perchance the matter 
escape thy memory, when thou shalt go to bed and take off thy 
girdle, haply the sound of them falling to the ground will remind 
thee of thy promise." Despite this strict injunction of the Shadow 
of Allah the Princes on that day also clean forgot the order and 
the promise they had made to the King. When, however, night 
came on, and Prince Bahman went to his bed-chamber for sleep, 
he loosed his girdle and down fell the golden balls and at the sound 
the message of the Shah flashed across his thought. So he and his 
brother Parwez at once hastened to Perizadah's bower, where she 
was about retiring to rest ; and, with many excuses for troubling 
her at so unseasonable an hour, reported to her all that had 
happened. She lamented their thoughtlessness which for three 
successive days had caused them forget the royal behest and 
ended with saying, " Fortune hath favoured you, O my brothers, 
and brought you suddenly to the notice of the Asylum of the 
Universe, a chance which often hath led to the height of good. It 
grieveth me sore that in your over regard for our fraternal love and 
union ye did not take service with the King when he deigned 
command you. Moreover ye have far greater cause for regret and 
repentance than I in that ye failed to plead a sufficient excuse and 
that which ye offered must have sounded rude and churlish. A 
right dangerous thing it is to thwart Kingly wishes. In his extreme 
condescension the Shah commandeth you to take service with him 
and ye, in rebelling against his exalted orders have done foolishly 
and ye have caused me much trouble of mind. Howbeit I will sue 
counsel from my slave the Speaking-Bird and see what he may say ; 
for when I have ever any hard and weighty question to decide I 
fail not to ask his advice." Hereupon the Princess set the cage by 
her side and after telling her slave all that her brothers had made 
known to her, asked admonition of him regarding what they should 

Tki Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 533 

do. The Speaking-Bird made answer, " It behoveth the Princes 
to gratify the Shah in all things he requireth of them ; moreover, 
let them make ready a feast for the King and humbly pray him to 
visit this house, and thereby testify to him loyalty and devotion to 
his royal person." Then said the Princess, " O Bird, my brothers 
are most dear to me nor would I suffer them leave my sight for 
one moment if it were possible ; and Allah forfend that this daring 
on their part do injury to our love and affection." Said the 
Speaking-Bird, "I have counselled thee for the best and have 
offered thee the right rede ; nor do thou fear aught in following it, 
for naught save good shall come therefrom." " But," quoth the 
Princess, " an the Shadow of Allah honour us by crossing the 
threshold of this house needs must I present myself before him 
with face unveiled ? " * " By all means," quoth the Speaking-Bird, 

* this will not harm thee, nay rather 'twill be to thine advantage.'* 

- And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace 

enfc of tfrc StVJDunfcreDi anfc 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that 
early next day the two Princes Bahman and Parwez rode as 
aforetime to the hunting-ground and met Khusrau Shah, who 
asked them, saying, " What answer bring ye from your sister ? " 
Hereupon the elder brother advancing said, " O Shadow of Allah, 
verily we are thy slaves and whatever thou deign bid that we are 
ready to obey. These less than the least have referred the matter 
to their sister and have obtained her consent ; nay more, she 
blamed and chided them for that they did not hurry to carry out 
the commands of the Refuge of the World the moment they 

1 This is still a Persian custom because all the subjects, women as well as men, arc 
virtually the King's slave* 

534 Supplemental Nights. 

were delivered. Therefore being sore displeased at us, she 
desireth us on her behalf to plead forgiveness with the Shahinshah l 
for this offence by us offered." Replied the King, " No crime 
have ye committed to call forth the royal displeasure : nay more, 
it delighteth the Shadow of Allah exceedingly to see the love 
ye twain bear towards your sister." Hearing such words of con- 
descension and kindliness from the Shah, the Princes held their 
peace and hung their heads for shame groundwards ; and the 
King who that day was not keen, according to his custom, after 
the chase, whenever he saw the brothers hold aloof, called 
them to his prese'nce and heartened their hearts with words of 
favour; and presently, when a-weary of sport, he turned the head 
of his steed palace-wards and deigned order the Princes to ride 
by his side. The Wazirs and Councillors and Courtiers one and 
all fumed with envy and jealousy to see two unknowns entreated 
with such especial favour; and as they rode at the head of the 
suite adown the market-street all eyes were turned upon the 
youths and men asked one of other, " Who be the two who ride 
beside the Shah ? Belong they to this city, or come they from 
some foreign land ? " And the folk praised and blessed them 
saying, "Allah send our King of kings two Princes as goodly 
and gallant as are these twain who ride beside him. If our hapless 
Queen who languisheth in durance had brought forth sons, by 
Allah's favour they would now be of the same age as these young 
lords." But as soon as the cavalcade reached the palace the King 
alighted from his horse and led the Princes to his private chamber, 
a splendid retreat magnificently furnished, wherein a table had 
been spread with sumptuous meats and rarest cates ; and having 
seated himself thereat he motioned them to do likewise. Here- 
upon the brothers making low obeisance also took their seats 
and ate in well-bred silence with respectful mien. Then the Shah, 

1 i.e. King of kings, the BaaiAevs 

The Two Sisters who envied their CadetU. 535 

desiring to warm them into talk * and thereby to test their wit 
and wisdom, addressed them on themes galore and asked of them 
many questions ; and, inasmuch as they had been taught well 
and trained in every art and science, they answered with pro- 
priety and perfect ease. The Shah struck with admiration 
bitterly regretted that Almighty Allah had not vouchsafed to him 
sons so handsome in semblance and so apt and so learned 
as these twain ; and, for the pleasure of listening to them, he 
lingered at meat longer than he was wont to do. And when he 
rose from table and retired with them to his private apartment 
he still sat longwhile talking with them and at last in his 
admiration he exclaimed, " Never until this day have I set eyes 
on youths so well brought up and so comely and so capable as 
are these, and methinks 'twere hard to find their equals any- 
where." In fine quoth he, "The time waxeth late, so now let 
us cheer our hearts with music." And forthright the royal band 
of minstrels and musicians began to sing and perform upon 
instruments of mirth and merriment, whilst dancing-girls and 
boys displayed their skill, and mimes and mummers played their 
parts. The Princes enjoyed the spectacle with extreme joy and 
the last hours of the afternoon passed in royal revelry and regale, 
But when the sun had set and evening came on, the youths 
craved dismissal from the Shah with many expressions of gratitude 
for the exalted favours he had deigned bestow on them ; and ere 
they fared forth the King of kings bespake them, saying, " Come 
ye again on the morrow to our hunting-ground as heretofore, and 
thence return to the palace. By the beard of the Shah, he fain 
would have you always with him, and solace him with your com- 
panionship and converse." Prince Bahman, prostrating himself 
before the presence, answered, " 'Tis the very end and aim of all 
our wishes, O Shadow of Allah upon Earth, that on the morrow 

1 Majlis garm kamd t i.r, to give some life to the company. 

536 Supplemental Nights. 

when thou shalt come from the chase and pass by our poor house, 
thou graciously deign enter and rest in it awhile, thereby con- 
ferring the highmost of honours upon ourselves and upon our 
sister. Albeit the place is not worthy of the Shahinshah's exalted 
presence, yet at times do mighty Kings condescend to visit the 
huts of their slaves." The King, ever more and more enchanted 
with their comeliness and pleasant speech, vouchsafed a most 
gracious answer, saying, " The dwelling place of youths in your 
estate and degree will certainly be goodly and right worthy of 
you ; and the Shah willingly consenteth for the morrow to become 
the guest of you twain and of your sister whom, albeit he have 
not yet seen, he is assured to find perfect in all gifts of body 
and mind. Do ye twain therefore about early dawn-tide expect 
the Shah at the usual trysting place." The Princes then craved 
leave to wend their ways ; and going home said to their sister, 
" O Perizadah, the Shah hath decreed that to-morrow he will 
come to our house and rest here awhile after the hunt." Said 
she, "An so it be, needs must we see to it that all be made 
ready for a royal banquet and we may not be put to shame when 
the Shadow of Allah shall deign shade us. There is no help but 
that in this matter I ask of my slave, the Speaking-Bird, what 
counsel he would give ; and that prepare according thereto such 
meats as are meet for him and are pleasing to the royal palate." 
- And as the morn began <to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

enfc of tfje &{* ^unfcrcb anfc 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
Princes both approved of her plan and went to seek repose ; 
whereupon Perizadah sent for the cage and setting it before her 
said, " O Bird, the Shah hath made a promise and hath decreed 
that he will deigniionour this our house on the morrow, Wherefore 
we must needs make ready for our liege lord the best of banquets 

Tki Two Sisters who envUd their CadetU. $37 

and I bid thee say me what dishes should the kitcheners cook 
for him ? " The Speaking-Bird replied, " O my lady, thou hast the 
most skilful of cooks and confectioners. Do thou bid them dress 
for thee the choicest dainties, but above all others see thou with 
thine own eyes that they set before the Shah a dish of new green 
cucumbers stuffed with pearls." Quoth the Princess in utter 
wonderment, " Never until this time heard I of such a dainty ! 
How ? cucumbers with a filling of pearls ! And what will the 
King, who cometh to eat bread and not to gaze on stones, say to 
such meat ? Furthermore, I have not in my possession pearls 
enough to serve for even a single cucumber." Replied the Speaking- 
Bird, " This were an easy matter : do thou dread naught but only 
act as I shall advise thee. I seek not aught save thy welfare and 
would on no wise counsel thee to thy disadvantage. As for the 
pearls thou shalt collect them on this wise ; go thou to-morrow 
betimes to the pleasure-gardens and bid a hole be dug at the foot of 
the first tree in the avenue to thy right hand, and there shalt thou 
find of pearls as large a store as thou shalt require/' So after 
dawn on the next day Princess Perizadah bade a gardener-lad 
accompany her and fared to the site within the pleasure-gardens 
whereof the Speaking-Bird had told her. Here the boy dug a hole 
both deep and wide when suddenly his spade struck upon some- 
what hard, and he removed with his hands the earth and discovered 
to view a golden casket well nigh one foot square. Hereupon the 
young gardener showed it to the Princess who exclaimed, " I 
brought thee with me for this very reason. Take heed and see 
that no harm come to it, but dig it out and bring it to me with all 
care." When the lad did her bidding she opened it forthright and 
found it filled with pearls and unions fresh from the sea, round as 
rings and all of one and the same size perfectly fitted for the purpose 
which the Speaking-Bird had proposed. Perizadah rejoiced with 
extreme joy at the sight and taking up the box walked back with 
it to the house ; and the Princes who had seen their sister faring 

538 Supplemental Nights. 

forth betimes with the gardener-lad and had wondered why she went 
to the park thus early unaccording to her wonted custom, catching 
sight of her from the casement quickly donned their walking 
dresses and came to meet her. And as the two brothers walked 
forwards they saw the Princess approaching them with somewhat 
unusual under her arm, which when they met, proved to be a 
golden casket whereof they knew naught. Quoth they, " O our 
sister at early light we espied thee going to the pleasure-grounds 
with a gardener-lad empty handed, but now thou bringest back this 
golden casket ; so disclose to us where and how thou hast found it ; 
and haply there may be some hoard close hidden in the parterre ? " 
Perizadah replied, " Sooth ye say, O my brothers : I took this lad 
with me and made him dig under a certain tree where we came 
upon this box of pearls, at the sight whereof methinks your hearts 
will be delighted." The Princess straightway opened the box and her 
"brothers sighting the pearls and unions were amazed with extreme 
amazement and rejoiced greatly to see them. Quoth the Princess, 
" Come now ye twain with me, for that I have in hand a weighty 
matter ; " and quoth Prince Bahman, " What is there to do ? I 
pray thee tell us without delay for never yet hast thou kept aught 
of thy life from us." She made reply, " O my brothers, I have 
nothing to hide from you, nor think ye any ill of me, for I am now 
about to tell you all the tale." Then she made known to them 
what advice the Speaking-Bird had given to her ; and they, con- 
ning the matter over in their minds, marvelled much why her slave 
had bidden them set a dish of green cucumbers stuffed with pearls 
before the Shah, nor could they devise any reason for it. Presently 
the Princess resumed, " The Speaking-Bird indeed is wise and 
ware ; so methinks this counsel must be for our advantage ; and 
at any rate it cannot be without some object and purpose. It 
therefore behoveth us to do even as he hath commanded." Here- 
upon the Princess went to her own chamber and summoning the 
head cook said to him, " This day the Shah, the Shadow of Allah 

The Two Sisters who enviid thiir CadetU. 559 

pon Earth, will condescend here to eat the noon-meal. So do thou 
take heed that the meats be of choicest flavour and fittest to set 
before the Asylum of the World , but of all the dishes there is one 
thou alone must make and let not another have a hand therein. 
This shall be of the freshest green cucumbers with a stuffing of 
unions and pearls." - And as the morn began to dawn Shahrazad 
held her peace till 

entt of tfjc Sbfx ^untreft an* lig&tn.fiftl) Xi 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
head Cook listened to this order of the Princess with wonderment 
and said in himself, " Who ever heard of such a dish or dreamed 
of ordering such an one." The Lady seeing his astonishment 
fcetrayed in his semblance without the science of thought-reading/ 
said to him, " It seemeth from thy countenance that thou deemest 
me daft of wits to give thee such order. I know that no one 
ever tasted a dish of the kind, but what is that to thee ? Do 
thou e'en as thou art bidden. Thou seest this box brimful of 
pearls ; so take of them as many as thou needest for the dish, and 
what remaineth over leave in the box." The Kitchener who 
could answer nothing in his confusion and amazement, chose as 
many precious stones as he required, and presently fared away to 
superintend the meats being cooked and made ready for the feast 
Meanwhile the Princess went over the house and grounds and 
gave directions to the slaves about the ordinance thereof, lending 
especial attention to the carpets and divans, the lamps and all 
other furniture. Next day at break of dawn Princes Bahman and 
Parwez rode forth in rich attire to the appointed place where they 

1 In Arabic " '1 1m al-Mukishafah " = the Science by which Eastern adepts discover 
roan's secret thoughts. Of late years it has appeared in England but with the same 
quackery and imposture which have ruined " Spiritualism " as the Faith of the Futun. 

Supplemental Nights. 

first met the Shah, who was also punctual to his promise and 
vouchsafed to join them in the hunt. Now when the sun had 
risen high and its rays waxed hot, the King gave up the chase, 
and set forth with the Princes to their house ; and as they drew 
nigh thereto the cadet pushed forwards and sent word to the 
Princess that the Asylum of the World was coming in all good 
omen. Accordingly, she hastened to receive him and stood 
waiting his arrival at the inner entrance ; and after, when the King 
rode up to the gate and dismounting within the court stepped 
over the threshold of the house-door, she fell down at his feet 
and did him worship. Hereat her brothers said, " O Asylum of 
the World, this is our sister of whom we spake ; " and the Shah 
with gracious kindness and condescension raised her by the 
hand, and when he saw her face he marvelled much at its 
wondrous comeliness and loveliness. He thought in himself, 
" How like she is to her brothers in favour and form, and I trow 
there be none of all my lieges in city or country who can com- 
pare with them for beauty and noble bearing. This~ country-house 
also exceedeth all that I have ever seen in splendour and gran- 
deur." The Princess then led the Shah through the house 
and showed him all the magnificence thereof, while he rejoiced 
with extreme joy at everything that met his sight. So when 
King Khusrau had considered whatso was in the mansion he 
said to the Princess, " This home of thine is far grander than any 
palace owned by the Shah, who would now stroll about the pleasure- 
garden, never doubting but that it will be delightsome as the 
house." Hereat the Princess threw wide open the door whence 
the grounds could be seen ; and at once the King beheld before 
and above all other things, the fountain which cast up intessantly, 
in gerbes and jets, water clear as crystal withal golden of hue. 
Seeing such prodigy he cried, This is indeed a glorious gusher : 
never before saw I one so admirable. But say me where is its 
.source, and by what means doth it shoot up in spurts so high? 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 541 

Whence cometh this constant supply and in what fashion was it 
formed ? The Shah would fain see it near hand.' 1 4< O King of 
kings, and Lord of the lands," quoth the Princess, " be pleased to do 
whatso thou desirest." Thereupon they went up to the fountain 
and the Shah stood gazing upon it with delight when behold, he 
heard a concert of sugar-sweet voices choiring with the harmony 
and melody of wit-ravishing music. So he turned him round and 
gazed about him to discover the singers, but no one was in sight ; 
and albeit he looked both far and near all was in vain, he heard 
the voices but he could descry no songster. At length completely 
baffled he exclaimed, "Whence come these most musical of 
sounds ; and rise they from the bowels of earth or are they 
floating in the depths of air ? They fill the heart with rapture, 
but strangely surprise the senses to see that no one singer is in 
sight." Replied the Princess with a smile, " O Lord of lords, 
there are no minstrels here and the strains which strike the 
Shah's ear come from yonder tree. Deign walk on, I pray thee, 
and examine it well." So he advanced thereto, ever more and 
more enchanted with the music, and he gazed now at the Golden- 
Water and now at the Singing-Tree till lost in wonderment and 
amazement ; then, " O Allah," said he to himself, " is all this Nature- 
made or magical, for in very deed the place is full of mystery ? " 
Presently, turning to the Princess quoth he, " O my lady, prithee 
whence came ye by this wondrous tree which hath been planted 
in the middlemost of this garden : did anyone bring it from some 
far distant land as a rare gift, and by what name is it known ?" 
Quoth Perizadah in reply, " O King of kings, this marvel hight 
Singing-Tree groweth not in our country. 'Twere long to recount 
whence and by what means I obtained it ; and suffice it for the pre- 
sent to say that the Tree, together with the Golden-Water and the 
Speaking-Bird, were all found by me at one and the same time. 
Deign now accompany thy slave and look upon this third 
rarity ; and when the Shah shall have rested and recovered from 

Supplemental Nights. 

the toils and travails of hunting, the tale of these three strange 
things shall be told to the Asylum of the World in fullest 
detail." Hereto the King replied, " All the Shah's fatigue hath 
gone for gazing upon these wonders; and now to visit the 

Speaking-Bird." And as the morning began to dawn Shah- 

razad held her peace till 

enli of ifie >ix ^unfcrefc an* lEtgitg-sfxtft 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
Princess took the King and when she had shown to him the 
Speaking-Bird, they returned to the garden where he never ceased 
considering the fountain with extreme surprise and presently 
exclaimed, " How is this ? No spring whence cometh all this 
water meeteth the Shah's eye, and no channel ; nor is there any 
reservoir large enough to contain it." She replied, " Thou speakest 
sooth, O King of kings ! This jetting fount hath no source ; and 
it springeth from a small marble basin which I filled from a single 
flagon of the Golden- Water ; and by the might of Allah Almighty 
it increased and waxed copious until it shot up in this huge gerbe 
which the Shah seeth. Furthermore it ever playeth day and night ; 
and, marvellous to relate, the water falling back from that height 
into the basin minisheth not in quantity nor is aught of it spilt or 
wasted." Hereat the King, filled with wonder and astonishment, 
bade go back to the Speaking-Bird ; whereupon the Princess led 
him to the belvedere whence he looked out upon thousands of all 
manner fowls carolling in the trees and filling air with their hymns 
and praises of the Creator; so he asked his guide, "O my lady, 
whence come these countless songsters which haunt yonder tree 
and make the welkin resound with their melodious notes ; yet they 
affect none other of the trees ? " Quoth Perizadah, " O King of 
kings, they are all attracted by the Speaking-Bird and flock hither 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. $43 

to accompany his song ; and for that his cage hangeth to the 
window of this belvedere they prefer only the nearest of the trees ; 
and here he may be heard singing sweeter notes than any of the 
others, nay in a plaint more musical far than that of any night- 
ingale." And as the Shah drew nigh-the cage and gave ear to the 
Bird's singing, the Princess called to her captive saying, " Ho, my 
slave the Bird, dost thou not perceive the Asylum of the Universe is 
here that thou payest him not due homage and worship ? " Hearing 
these words the Speaking-Bird forthright ceased his shrilling 
and at the same moment all the other songsters sat in deepest 
silence ; for they were loyal to their liege lord nor durst any one 
utter a note when he held his peace. The Speaking-Bird then 
spake in human voice saying, " O great King, may Almighty Allah 
by His Might and Majesty accord thee health and happiness ; " so 
the Shah returned the salutation and the Slave of Princess 
Perizadah ceased not to shower blessings upon his head. Mean- 
while the tables were spread after sumptuous fashion and the 
choicest meats were set before the company which was seated in 
due order and degree, the Shah placing himself hard by the 
Speaking-Bird and close to the casement where the cage was hung. 
Then the dish of green cucumbers having been set before him, he 
put forth his hand to help himself, but drew it back in wonderment 
when he saw that the cucumbers, ranged in order upon the plate, 
were stuffed with pearls which appeared at either end. He asked 
the Princess and her brothers, " What is this dish ? It cannot be 
meant for food ; then wherefore is it placed before the Shah ? 
Explain to me, I command you, what this thing meaneth." They 
could not give an answer unknowing what reply to make, and as 
all held their peace the Speaking-Bird answered for them saying, 
" O King of the Age and the Time, dost thou deem it strange to 
see a dish of cucumbers stuffed with pearls ? How much stranger 
then it is that thou wast not astonished to hear that the Queen thy 
Consort had, contrary to the laws of Allah's ordinance, given birth 

544 Supplemental Nights. 

to such animals as dog and cat and musk-rat. This should have 
caused thee far more of wonder, for who hath ever heard of woman 
bearing such as these ? " Hereat the Shah made answer to the 
Speaking-Bird, " All that thou sayest is right indeed and I know 
that such things are not after the law of Almighty Allah ; but I 
believed the reports of the midwives, the wise women who were 
with the Queen such time she was brought to bed, for they were 
not strangers but her own sisters, born of the same parents as her- 
self. How then could I do otherwise than trust their words." 
Quoth the Speaking-Bird, " O King of kings, indeed the truth of 
the matter is not hidden from me. Albeit they be the sisters of 
thy Queen, yet seeing the royal favours and affection towards 
their cadette they were consumed with anger and hatred and 
despite by reason of their envy and jealousy. So they devised 
evil devices against her and their deceits at last succeeded in 
diverting thy thoughts from her, and in hiding her virtues from thy 
sight. Now are their malice and treason made manifest to thee ; 
and, if thou require further proof, do thou summon them and 
question them of the case. They cannot hide it from thee and will 
be reduced to confess and crave thy pardon." - And as the morn 
began to dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

enfc of t&e Sbix f^uirtueti atrtr B(ft6tg-sebent6 

THEN said she: - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
Speaking-Bird said also to Khusrau Shah, " These two icyal 
brothers so comely and stalwart and this lovely Princess, their 
sister, are thine own lawful children to whom the Queen thy 
Consort gave birth. The midwives, thy sisters-in-law, by reason 
of the blackness of their hearts and faces bore them away as soon as 
they were born : indeed every time a child was given to thee they 
wrapped it in a bit of blanket and putting it in a basket committed 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 545 

it to the stream which floweth by the palace to the intent that it 
might die an obscure death. But it so fortuned that the Intendant 
of thy royal gardens espied these baskets one and all as they floated 
past his grounds, and took charge of the infants he found therein. 
He then caused them to be nursed and reared with all care and, 
whilst they were growing up to man's estate, he looked to their 
being taught every art and science ; and whilst his life endured 
be dealt with them and brought them up in love and tenderness 
as though they had been his very own. And now, O Khusrau 
Shah, wake from thy sleep of ignorance and heedlessness, and 
know that these two Princes Bahman and Parwez and the Princess 
Perizadah their sister are thine own issue and thy rightful heirs." 
When the King heard these words and was assured of their purport 
being true and understood the evil doing of those Satans, his 
sisters-in-law, he said, "O Bird, I am indeed persuaded of thy 
soothfastness, for when I first saw these youths at the hunting- 
ground my bowels yearned with affection towards them and my 
heart felt constrained to love them as though they had been my 
own seed. Both they and their sister have drawn my affections 
to them as a magnet draweth iron : and the voice of blood crieth 
to me and compelleth me to confess the tie and to acknowledge that 
they are my true children, borne in the womb of my Queen, whose 
direful Destiny I have been the means of carrying out." Then 
turning to the Princes and their sister he said with tearful eyes and 
broken voice, "Ye are my children and henceforth do ye regard 
me as your father." At this they ran to him with rare delight and 
falling on his neck embraced him. Then they all sat down to 
meat and when they had finished eating, Khusrau Shah said to 
them, " O my children, I must now leave you, but Inshallah 
Allah willing I will come again to-morrow and bring with me 
the Queen your mother." So saying he fare welled them fondly 
and mounting his horse departed to his palace ; and no sooner had 
he seated himself upon his throne than he summoned the Grand 

546 Supplemental Nights. 

Wazir and commanded him saying, " Do thou send this instant 
and bind in heaviest bonds those vile women, the sisters of my 
Queen ; for their ill deeds have at last come to light and they 
deserve to die the death of murtherers. Let the Sworder forth- 
right make sharp his sword; for the ground thirsteth for their 
blood. Go see thyself that they are beheaded without stay or 
delay : await not other order, but instantly obey my command- 
ment." The Grand Wazir went forth at once and in his presence 
the Envious Sisters were decapitated and thus underwent fit 
punishment for their malice and their evil doing. After this, 
Khusrau Shah with his retinue walked afoot to the Cathedral- 
mosque whereby the Queen had been imprisoned for so many 
years in bitter grief and woe, and with his own hands he led her 
forth from her cage and tenderly embraced her. Then seeing her 
sad plight and her care-worn countenance and wretched attire he 
wept and cried, " Allah Almighty forgive me this mine unjust and 
wrongful dealing towards thee. I have put to death thy sisters 
who deceitfully and despitefully raised my wrath and anger against 
thee, the innocent, the guiltless; and they have received due 

retribution for their misdeeds." And as the morn began to 

dawn Shahrazad held her peace till 

entr of t&e &t'x untain an& 

THEN said she : - 1 have heard, O auspicious King, that the 
King spake kindly and fondly to his Consort, and told her all that 
had betided him, and what the Speaking-Bird had made known to 
him, ending with these words, " Come now with me to the palace 
where thou shalt see thy two sons and daughter grown up to become 
the loveliest of beings. Hie with me and embrace them and take 
them to thy bosom, for they are our children, the light of our eyes. 
But first do thou repair to the v Hammam and don thy royal robes 

Tke Two Sisters who tnvud tkir Ca&tte. 547 

and jewels." Meanwhile tidings of these events were noised about 
the city how the King had at length shown due favour to the Queen, 
and had released her from bondage with his own hands and prayed 
forgiveness for the wrongs he had done to her; and how th 
Princes and the Princess had been proved to be her true-born 
children,, and also how that Khusrau Shah had punished her sisters 
who conspired against her : so joy and gladness prevailed both in 
city and kingdom, and ail the folk blessed the Shah's Banii and 
cursed the Satancsscs her sisters* And next day when the Queen 
had bathed in the Hammam and had donned royal dress and regal 
jewels, she went to meet her children together with the King who 
led up to her the Princes Bah man and Parwez and the Princess 
Perizadah and said, See, here are thy children, fruit of thy womb 
and core of thy heart, thine own very sons and thy daughter : 
embrace them with all a mother's love and extend thy favour and 
affection to them even as I have done. When thou didst give 
them birth, thine til-omened sisters bore them away from thee and 
cast them into yonder stream and said that thou hadst been 
delivered first of a puppy, then of a kitten and lastly of a musk- 
ratling. I cannot console myself for having credited their calum- 
nies and the only recompense I can make is to place in thine embrace 
these three thou broughtest forth, and whom Allah Almighty 
hath restored to us and hath made right worthy to be called our 
children." Then the Princes and Princess fell upon their mother's 
neck and fondly embraced her weeping tear-floods of joy. After 
this the Shah and the Banu sat down to meat together with their 
children ; and, when they had made an end of eating, King 
Khusrau Shah repaired to the garden with his Consort that he 
might show her the Singing-Tree and the fountain of Golden- 
Water, whereat the Queen was filled with wonder and delight. 
Next they turned to the belvedere and visited the Speaking-Bird 
of whom, as they sat at meat, the King had spoken to her in 
highest praise, and the Queen rejoiced in his sweet voice and 

548 Supplemental Nights. 

melodious singing. And when they had seen all these things, 
the King mounted horse, Prince Bahman riding on his right 
hand and on his left Prince Parwez, while the Queen took Prin- 
cess Perizadah with her inside her litter, and thus they set 
forth for the palace. As the royal cavalcade passed the city walls 
and entered the capital with royal pomp and circumstance, 
the subjects who had heard the glad tidings thronged in multitudes 
to see their progress and volleyed shouts of acclamation ; and as 
the lieges had grieved aforetime to see the Queen-consort 
imprisoned, so now they rejoiced with exceeding joy to find her 
free once more. But chiefly they marvelled to look upon the 
Speaking-Bird, for the Princess carried the cage with her, and as 
they rode along thousands of sweet-toned songsters came swarming 
round them from every quarter, and flew as an escort to the cage, 
filling the air with marvellous music; while flocks of others, 
perching upon the trees and the housetops, carolled and warbled as 
it were to greet their lord's cage accompanying the royal cavalcade. 
And when the palace was reached, the Shah and his Queen and his 
children sat down to a sumptuous banquet ; and the city was 
illuminated, and everywhere dancings and merry-makings testified 
to the joy of the lieges; and for many day" these revels and 
rejoicings prevailed throughout the capital and the kingdom where 
every man was blithe and happy and had feastings and festivities in 
his house. After these festivals King Khusrau Shah made his 
elder son Bahman heir to his throne and kingdom and committed 
to his hands the affairs of state in their entirety, and the Prince 
administered affairs with such wisdom and success that the great- 
ness and glory of the realm were increased twofold. The Shah also 
entrusted to his youngest son Parwez the charge of his army, both 
of horsemen and foot-soldiers ; and Princess Perizadah was given 
by her sire in marriage to a puissant King who reigned over a 
mighty country; and lastly the Queen-mother forgot in perfect 
joy and happiness the pangs of her captivity. Destiny ever after- 

The Two Sisters who envied their Cadette. 549 

wards endowed them, one and all, with days the most delectable 
and they led the liefest of lives until at last there came to them the 
Destroyer of delights and the Sunderer of societies and the 
Depopulator of palaces and the Garnerer of graveyards and the 
Reaper for Resurrection-day, and they became as though they 
never had been. So laud be to the Lord who dieth not and who 
knoweth no shadow of change. 









THIS story is a compound of two distinct tales, namely, the Dream of Riches 
and the Quest of the Ninth Image. It has always been one of the most 
popular of the tales in our common version of the " Arabian Nights," with this 
advantage, that it is perhaps the only one of the whole collection in which 
something like a moral purpose maybe discovered "a virtuous woman is 
more precious than fine gold.'' Baron de Sacy has remarked of The Nights, 
that in the course of a few years after Galland's version appeared " it filled 
Europe with its fame, though offering no object of moral or philosophical 
interest, and detailing stories merely for the pleasure of relating them." But 
this last statement is not quite accurate : Shahrazad relates her stories merely 
to prolong her own life. 

It is a curious fact and one perhaps not very generally known that the 
Tale of Zayn al-Asnim is one of two (the other being that of Khudadld) which 
Galland repudiated, as having been foisted into his 8th volume without his 
knowledge, as he expressly asserts in the " Avertissement " to the 9th vol., 
promising to remove them in a second edition, which, however, he did not live 
to see. I understand that M. Herrmann Zotenberg purposes showing, in his 
forthcoming edition of " Aladdin," that these two kistoires (including that of 
the Princess of Darylba*r, which is interwoven with the talc of Khuddddd and 
his Brothers) were Turkish tales translated by M. Petis de la Croix and were 
intended to appear in his " Mille et un Jours," which was published, after his 
death, in 1710 ; and that, like most of the tales in that work, they were derived 

554 Appendix: Variants and Analogues, 

from the Turkish collection entitled " Al-Faraj ba'd al-Shiddah," or Joy after 
Affliction. But that Turkish story-book is said to be a translation of the 
Persian collection entitled " Hazir ti Yek Rtiz " (the Thousand and Oe Days), 
which M. Petis rendered into French, 

In the preface to Petis' work it is stated that during his residence in Persia, 
in 1675, he made a transcript of the " Hazr u Yek Ruz," by permission of the 
author, a dervish named Mukhlis, of Isfahan. That transcript has not, I 
understand, been found ; but Sir William Ouseley brought a manuscript from 
Persia which contained a portion of the " Haza> ti Yek Rtiz," and which he 
says ("Travels," vol. ii p. 21, note) agreed so far with the French version. 
And it does seem strange that Petis should go to the Turkish book for tales to 
include in his ** Mille et un Jours " when he had before him a complete copy of 
the Persian original ; and even if he did so, how came his French rendering of 
the tales in question into the hands of Galland's publisher ? The tales are not 
found in Petis' version, which is regularly divided into 1001 Days ; and the 
Turkish work, judging from the titles of the eleven first tales, of which I have 
seen a transcript by M. Zotenberg, has a number of stories which do not occur 
in the Persian. 1 But I think it very unlikely that the tales of Khuddda'd and the 
Princess, foisted into Galland's 8th volume, were translated from the Turkish 
collection. In Galland the story of the Princess Darydbdr is inserted in that of 
Khuddddd ; while in the Turkish story-book they are separate tales, the 6th 
recital being under the tide, " Of the Vazir with the Daughter of the Prince of 
Dary4bn," and the 9th story is M Of the Sons of the Sovereign of Harra"n 
with Khudldad. 1 ' This does not seem to support the assertion that these tales 
in Galland were derived from the Turkish versions : it is not to be supposed, 
surely, that the translator of the versions in Galland conceived the idea of 
fusing the two stories together ? 

* Nor ate those which do occur all in the same order : The first in the Turkish 
book, "Of 'Ebu-'l-Kasim of Basra, of the 'Emfr of Basra, and of 'Ebu-'l-Faskh of 
Wdsit," is probably similar to the first in Petis, " History of Aboulcasem of Basra." 
The second, " Of Fadzlu-'lldh of Mawsil (Mosel), of 'Ebii-'l-Hasan, and of Mahyar of 
Wasit," is evidently the seventh in Petis, " History of Fadlallah, Son of Bin Ortoc, 
King of Moussel." The fourth, "Of Ridzwan-Shah of China and the Shahristdni 
Lady," is the second in Petis, "History of King Razvanschad and of the Princess 
Cheheristany." The eleventh, "Of the Sovereign without a care and of the Vazir full 
of care,*' is the eighth in Petis, " History of King Bedreddin Lolo and of his Vizier 
Altalmuk." The third, "Of the Builder of Bemm with the two Vazfrs of the king of 
Kawashar," the seventh, "Of the Rogue Nasr and the son of the king of Khurdsan," 
and the tenth, "The Three Youths, the Old Man, and the Daughter of the King," I 
cannot, from these titles, recognise in Petis ; while the fifth, " Farrukh-Shad, Farrukh- 
Ruz, and FarrUkh-Naz,' r may be the same as the frame-story of the ' Hazar u Yek 
Ruz," where the king is called Togrul-bey, his son Farrukrouz, and his daughter 
Farruknaz, and if this be the case, the Turkish book must differ considerably from the 
Persian in its plan. Although "The Thousand and One Nights" has not been found 
in Persian, there exists a work in that language of which the plan is somewhat similar r 
but adapted from an Indian source. It is thus described by Dr. Rieu, in his Catalogue 
of Persian MSS. in the British Museum, vol. ii. p. 773 : Tale of Shirzad, son of 
Gurgaban, emperor of China, and Gulshad, daughter of the vazir Farrukhzad (called the 
Story of the Nine Bel?ideres). Nine tales told by Gulshad to Shirzad, each in one of 
the nine beiridre$ of the royal palace, io otdev to save the forfeited life of her father. 

Tke Tale of Zayn Al-Asnam. $ 5 5 

The first part of the tale of Zayn al-Asnam the Dream of Riches is an 
interesting variant of the tale in The Nights, vol iv. p. 289, where (briefly to 
recapitulate, for purposes of comparison by-and-by) a man of Baghdad, having 
lost all his wealth and become destitute, dreams one night that a figure 
appeared before him and told him that his fortune was in Cairo. To that city 
he went accordingly, and as it was night when he arrived, he took shelter in a 
mosque. A party of thieves just then had got into an adjacent house from 
that same mosque, and the inmates, discovering them, raised such an outcry as 
to bring the police at once on the spot. The thieves contrive to get away, and 
the waif, finding only the man of Baghdad in the mosque, causes him to be 
seized and severely beaten, after which he sends him to prison, where the poor 
fellow remains thirty days, when the waif sends for him and begins to question 
him. The man tells his story, at which the waif laughs, calls him an ass for 
coming so far because of a dream, and adds that he himself had had a similar 
dream of a great treasure buried in the garden of such a house in Baghdad, but 
he was not so silly as to go there. The poor man recognises his own house 
and garden from the waif's description, and being set at liberty returns to 
Baghdad, and finds the treasure on the very spot indicated. 

Lane, who puts this story (as indeed he has done with much better ones) 
among his notes, states that it is also related by El-Ishdkf, who flourished 
during the reign of the Khalff El-Ma'mun (9th century) ; and his editor 
Edward Stanley Poolc adds that he found it also in a MS. of Lane's entitled 
" Murshid ez-Zuwar ilk Kubur el-Abrar," with the difference that it is there 
related of an Egyptian saint who travelled to Baghdad, and was in the same 
manner directed to his own house in EI-Fustat. 

The same story is told in the 6th book of the " Masnavf," an enormously 
long suff poem, written in Persian, by Jelal ed-Dfn, the founder of the sect of 
Muslim devotees generally known in Europe as the Dancing Dervishes, who 
died in 1272. This version differs from the Arabian in but a few and unimpor- 
tant details : Arriving at Cairo, destitute and hungry, he resolves to beg whea 
it is dark, and is wandering about, " one foot forward, one foot backwards," 
for a third of the night, when suddenly a watchman pounces on him and beats 
him with fist and stick for the people having been plagued with robbers, the 
Khalff had given orders to cut off the head of any one found abroad at night 
The wretched man begs for mercy till he has told his story, and when he hat 
finished the watchman acquaints him of a similar dream he had had of treasure 
at Baghdad. 1 

1 A translation of (his version, omitting the moral reflections interspersed, is given by 
Professor E. B. Cowcll in the "Journal of Philology," 1876, vol. vi. p. 193. The great 
Persian mystic tells another story of a Dream of Riches, which, though only remotely 
allied to our tale, is very curious : 


Notwithstanding the clear evidence of God's bounty, engendering those spiriMtaJ 
taste* in men, philosophers and learned men, wise in their own conceit, obstinately h( 


5 56 Appendix : Variants and A nalogues. 

A Turkish variant occurs in the " History of the Forty Vazfrs," where a 
poor water-carrier of Cairo, named Nu'ma'n, presents his son's teacher with 
his only camel, which he used daily for carrying his skins of water, as a reward 
for instructing the lad in the Kura"n, and his wife rails at him for his folly in 
no measured terms. In his sleep a white-haired old man appears to him in a 
dream and tells him to go to Damascus, where he would find his portion. 
After this has occurred three times in succession, poor Nu'ma'n, spite of his 
wife's remonstrances, sets out for Damascus, enters a mosque there, and 
receives a loaf of bread from a man who had been baking, and having eaten 
it falls asleep. Returning home, his wife reviles him for giving away a camel 
and doing other mad things. But again the venerable old man appears to him 
thrice in a dream, and bids him dig close by himself, and there he would find 
his provision. When he takes shovel and pick-axe to dig, his wife's tongue is 
more bitter than before, and after he has laboured a while and begins to feel 
somewhat fatigued, when he asks her to take a short spell at the work, she 
mocks him and calls him anything but a wise man. But on his laying bare a 
stone slab, she thinks there must be something beneath it, and offers to relieve 
him. "Nu'ma'n," quoth she, "thou'rt weary now.*' "No, I'm rested," says 
he. In the end he discovers a well, goes down into it, and finds a jar full of 
sequins, upon seeing which his wife clasps him lovingly round the neck, 
exclaiming, " O my noble little hubby 1 Blessed be God for thy luck and thy 
fortune ! '* Her tune changes, however, when the honest water-carrier tells 
her that he means to carry the treasure to the King, which he does, and the 
King having caused the money to be examined, the treasure is found to have 
the following legend written on it : " This is an alms from God to Nu'ma'n, by 
reason of his respect for the Kurdn.'' l 

their eyes to it, and look afar off for what is really close to them, so that they incur the 
penaltyvof being "branded on the nostrils" [Kuran, Ixviii. 1 6], adjudged against 
unbelievers. This is illustrated by the story of a poor Fakir who prayed to God that he 
might be fed without being obliged to work for his food. A divine voice came to him 
in his sleep and directed him to go to the house of a certain scribe and take a certain 
writing he should find there. He did so, and on reading the writing found that it con- 
tained directions for discovjering a hidden treasure. The directions were as follows : 
" Go outside the city to the dome which covers the tomb of the martyr, turn your back 
to the tomb and your face towards Mecca, place an arrow in your bow, and where the 
arrow falls dig for the treasure." But before the Fakir had time to commence the search 
tke rumour of the writing and its purport had reached the King, who at once sent and 
took it away from the Fakir, and began to search for the treasure on his own account. 
After shooting many arrows and digging in all directions the King failed to find the 
treasure, and got weary of searching, and returned the writing to the Fakir. Then the 
Fakfr tried what he could do, but failed to hit the spot where the treasure was buried. 
At last, despairing of success by his own unaided efforts, he cast his care upon God, and 
implored the divine assistance. Then a voice from heaven came to him, saying, "You 

Men overlook the spiritual treasures close to them, and for this reason it is that prophets 
have no honour in their own countries. Mr. E. H. WhinfielcTs Abridgment of " The 
Masnavi-i Mafnavi." (London, 1887.) 
1 See Mr. Gibb's translation (London : Redway), p. 278 

The Tale of Zayn Al-Asnam. 


This curious story, which dates, as we have seen, at least as far back as 
the Qth century, appears to be spread over Europe. Mr. E. Sidney Hartland, 
in an able paper treating of several of its forms in " The Antiquary " for Feb- 
ruary, 1887, pp. 45-48, gives a Sicilian version from Dr. Pita's collection, 
which is to this effect : 

A poor fellow at Palermo, who got his living by salting tunny and selling 
it afterwards, dreamt one night that a person came to him and said that if he 
wished to find his fortune he would find it under the bridge of the Teste. 
Thither he goes and sees a man in rags, and is beginning to retire when thr 
man calls him back, informs him that he is his fortune, and bids him go at 
midnight of that same night to the place where he had deposited his casks of 
tunny, dig there, and whatever he found was his own. The tunny-seller gets 
a pick-axe and at midnight begins to dig. He comes upon a large flat stone, 
which he raises and discovers a staircase ; he descends, and at the bottom 
finds an immense treasure of gold. In brief, he becomes so rich that he lends 
the King of Spain " a million," to enable him to carry on his wars ; the King 
makes him Viceroy of Sicily, and by-and-by, being unable to repay the loan, 
raises him to the highest royal dignities. 

Johannes Fungerus, in his " Etymologicon Latino-Graecum," published at 
Leyden in 1607, in art Somnus, gravely relates the story, with a young 
Dutchman for the hero and as having happened " within the memory of our 
fathers, both as it has been handed down in truthful and honourable fashion as 
well as frequently told to me." His " true story " may thus be rendered : 

A certain young man of Dort, in Holland, had squandered his wealth and 
all his estate, and having contracted a debt, was unable to pay it. A certain 
one appeared to him in a dream, and advised him to betake himself to Kempen, 
and there on the bridge he would receive information from some one as to the 
way in which he should be extricated from his difficulties. He went there, 
and when he was in a sorrowful mood and thinking upon what had been told 
him and promenaded almost the whole day, a common beggar, who was asking 
afms, pitying his condition, sat down and asked him, " Why so sad ? " There- 
upon the dreamer explained to him his sad and mournful fate, and why he had 
come there : forsooth, under the impulse of a dream, he had set out thither, 
and was expecting God, as if by a wonder, to unravel this more than Gordian 
knot. The mendicant answered, " Good Heaven ! are you so mad and foolish 
as to rely on a dream, which is emptier than nothing, and journey hither? I 
should betake myself to Dort, to dig up a treasure buried under such a tree 
in such a man's garden (now this garden had belonged to the dreamer's 
father), likewise revealed to me in a dream." The other remained silent and 
pondering all that had been said to him, then hastened with all speed to Dort, 

1 " Rcm quae contigit pat rum memorii ut vcram ita dignan* relatu et uepenumcro 
mini a&sertam ab hominibus fide dignis apponam." 

558 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

and under the aforesaid tree found a great heap of money, which freed him 
from his obligations, and having paid off all his debts, he set up in a more 
sumptuous style than before. 

The second part of the tale, or novelette, of " The Spectre Barber," by 
Musseus (1735 * 788)i is probably an elaboration of some German popular 
legend closely resembling the last-cited version, only in this instance the hero 
does not dream, but is told by a ghost, in reward for a service he had done it 
(or him), to tarry on the great bridge over the Weser, at the time when day 
and night are equal, for a friend who would instruct him what he must do to 
retrieve his fortune. He goes there at dawn, and walks on the bridge till 
evening comes, when there remained no one but himself and a wooden legged 
soldier to whom he had given a small coin in the early morning, and who 
ventured at length to ask him why he had promenaded the bridge all day. 
The youth at first said he was waiting for a friend, but on the old soldier 
remarking that he could be no friend who would keep him waiting so long, he 
said that he had only dreamt he was to meet some friend (for he did not care 
to say anything about his interview with the ghost), the old fellow observed 
that he had had many dreams, but put not the least faith in them. " But my 
dream," quoth the youth, "was a most remarkable one." "It couldn't have 
been so remarkable as one I had many years ago," and so on, as usual, with 
this addition, that the young man placed the old soldier in a snug little cottage 
and gave him a comfortable annuity for life taking care, we may be sure, not 
to tell him a word as to the result of acting upon his dream. 

To what extent Musseus has enlarged his original material it is impossible 
to say ; but it is well known that, like Hans Anderson in later times, he did 
"improve" and add to such popular tales and traditions as he dealt with 
a circumstance which renders him by no means trustworthy for folk-lore 

In Denmark our well-travelled little tale does duty in accounting for the 
building of a parish church, as we learn from Thorpe, in his "Northern 
Mythology," vol. ii. p. 253 : 

Many years ago there lived in Erritso', near Fredericia, a vejy poor man 
who one day said, " If I had a large sum of money, I would build a church for 
the parish." The following night he dreamed that if he went to the south bridge 
at Veile he would make his fortune. He followed the intimation and strolled 
backwards and forwards on the bridge until it grew late, but without seeing any 
sign of good fortune. When just on the point of returning, he was accosted by 
an officer, who asked him why he had spent a whole day so on the bridge. He 
told him his dream, on hearing which the officer related to him in return that 
he also on the preceding night had dreamed that in a barn in Erritso, belonging 
to a man whose name he mentioned, a treasure lay buried. Now the name he 
mentioned was the man's own, who prudently kept his own counsel, hastened 

Tfu Tale of Zayn AI-Asnam. 559 

home, and found the treasure in the barn. The man was faithful to his word, 
and built the church. 1 

Equally at home, as we have seen, in Sicily, Holland, Germany, and 
Denmark, the identical legend is also domiciled in Scotland and England. Thus 
Robert Chambers, in his ** Popular Rhymes of Scotland,** ed. 1826, p. 56, 
speaking of Dundonald Castle, in Ayrshire, the ancient seat of King Robert II., 
relates the following local tradition : 

Donald, the builder, was originally a poor man, but had the faculty of 
dreaming lucky dreams. Upon one occasion he dreamed thrice in one night 
that if he were to go to London Bridge he would make a fortune. He went 
accordingly, and saw a man looking over the parapet of the bridge, whom he 
accosted courteously, and after a little conversation, intrusted him with the 
ecret of the occasion of his visiting London Bridge. Hie stranger told him 
that he had made a very* foolish errand, for he had himself once had a similar 
vision, which directed him to go to a certain spot in Ayrshire, in Scotland, 
where he would find a vast treasure, and for his part he had never once thought 
of obeying the injunction. From his description of the spot, however, the sly 
Scot at once perceived that the treasure in question must be concealed no- 
where but in his own humble kail-yard at home, to which he immediately 
repaired, in full expectation of finding it Nor was he disappointed ; for after 
destroying many good and promising cabbages, and completely cracking credit 
with his wife, who considered him as mad, he found a large potful of gold coin, 
with which he built a stout castle for himself, and became the founder of a 
flourishing family. 

"This absurd story," adds Chambers, " is localised in almost every district 
of Scotland, always referring to London Bridge, and Hogg (the Ettrick Shep- 
herd) has worked up the fiction in a very amusing manner in one of his 
1 Winter Evening Tales,' substituting the Bridge at Kelso for that of London." 

But the legend of the Chapman, or Pedlar, of Swafiam, in Norfolk, handed 
down, as it has been, from one credulous generation to another, with the most 
minute details and perfect local colour, throws quite into the shade all other 
versions or variants of the ancient tale of the poor man of Baghdad. Blom- 
field, in his "History of Norfolk," 8vo ed., vol. vi. 211-213, reproduces it a* 
follows, from Sir Roger Twysden's " Reminiscences" : 

" The story of the Pedlar of SwafTam Market is in substance this : That 
dreaming one night, if he went to London, he should certainly meet with a 
man upon London Bridge, which should tell him good news ; he was so per* 
plexed in his mind that till he set upon his journey he could have no rest 
To London therefore he hastes, and walked upon the Bridge for some hours, 
where being espied by a shopkeeper and asked what he wanted, he answered, 

1 Thorpe says that a nearly similar legend is current at Tanslel, on the island of 

560 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

' You may well ask me that question, for truly (quoth he) I am come hither 
upon a very vain errand,' and so told the story of his dream which occasioned 
his journey. Whereupon the shopkeeper replied, * Alas, good friend, should I 
have heeded dreams I might have proved myself as very a fool as thou hast ; 
for 'tis not long since that I dreamt that at a place called Swaffam Market, in 
Norfolk, dwells one John Chapman, a pedlar, who hath a tree in his back yard, 
under which is buried a pot of money. Now, therefore, if I should have made 
a journey thither to dig for such hidden treasure, judge you whether I should 
not have been counted a fool.' To whom the Pedlar cunningly said, * Yes, truly : 
I will therefore return home and follow my business, not heeding such dreams 
henceforward.' But when he came home (being satisfied that his dream was 
fulfilled), he took occasion to dig in that place, and accordingly found a large 
pot full of money, which he prudently concealed, putting the pot among the 
rest of his brass. After a time, it happened that one who came to his house, 
and beholding the pot, observed an inscription upon it, which being in Latin 
he interpreted it, that under that there was another twice as good. 1 Of this in- 
scription the Pedlar was before ignorant, or at least minded it not ; but when 
he heard the meaning of it, he said, * 'Tis very true ; in the shop where I 
bought this pot stood another under it which was twice as big ' ; but con- 
sidering that it might tend to his further profit to dig deeper in the same place 
where he found that, he fell again to work and discovered such a pot as was 
intimated by the inscription, full of old coin ; notwithstanding all which, he so 
concealed his wealth that the neighbours took no notice of it. But not long 
after the inhabitants of Swaffam resolving to re-edify their church, and having 
consulted the workmen about the charge, they made a levy, wherein they 
taxed the Pedlar according to no other rate but what they had formerly done. 
But he, knowing his own ability, came to the church and desired the workmen 
to show him their model and to tell him what they esteemed the charge of the 
north aisle would amount to ; which when they told him, he presently undertook 
to pay them for building it, and not only that, but for a very tall and beautiful 
tower steeple. 

" This is the tradition of the inhabitants, as it was told me there. And in 
testimony thereof, there was then his picture, with his wife and three 
children, in every window of the aisle, with an inscription running through 
the bottom of all those windows, viz., 'Orate pro bono statu Johannis 
Chapman. . . . Uxoris ejus, et Liberorum suorum, qui quidem Johannes 
hanc alam cum fenestris tecto et . . . fieri fecit.' It was in Henry the 

1 The common tradition is, it was in English rhyme, viz. 

" Where this stood 

Is another as good ;" 
or, as some will have it : 

" Under me doth lie 
Another much richer than I. 

The Tale of Zayn Al-Asnam. 561 

Seventh's time, but the year I now remember not, my notes being left with 
Mr. William Sedgwicke, who trickt the pictures, he being then with me. In 
that aisle is his seat, of an antique form, and on each side the entrance, 
the statue of the Pedlar of about a foot in length, with pack on his back, very 
artificially [? artistically] cut. This was sent me from Mr. William Dugdale, 
of Blyth Hall, in Warwickshire, in a letter dated Jan. 29th, 1652-3, which I have 
since learned from others to have been most true. ROGER TwYSDBN." 

Mr. William E. A. Axon, in "The Antiquary," vol. xi. p. 168, gives the same 
version, with some slight variations, from a work entitled " New Help to Dis- 
course," which he says was often printed between 1619 and 1696 : The dream 
was " doubled and tripled/' and the Pedlar stood on the bridge for two or three 
days ; but no mention is made of his finding a second pot of money : " he 
found an infinite mass of money, with part of which he re-edified the church, 
having his statue therein to this day, cut out in stone, with his pack on his 
back and his dog at his heels, his memory being preserved by the same form 
or picture in most of the glass windows in taverns and alehouses in that town 
to this day." The story is also told of a cobbler in Somersetshire (in an 
article on Dreams, " Saturday Review," Dec. 28, 1878), who dreamt three nights 
in succession that if he went to London Bridge he would there meet with some- 
thing to his advantage. For three days he walked over the bridge, when 
at length a stranger came up to him, and asked him why he had been walking 
from end to end of the bridge for these three days, offering -nothing for sale 
nor purchasing aught. The man having told him of his strange dream, the 
stranger said that he too had dreamt of a pot of gold buried in a certain orchard 
in such a place in Somersetshire. Upon this the cobbler returned home and 
found the pot of gold under an apple-tree. He now sent his son to school, 
where he learnt Latin, and when the lad had come home for his holidays, he 
happened to look at the pot that had contained the gold and seeing some writing 
on it he said, " Father, I can show you what I have learnt at school is of some 
use." He then translated the Latin inscription on the pot thus : " Look under 
and you will find better." They did look under and a large quantity of gold 
was found. Mr. Axon gives a version of the legend in the Yorkshire dialect in 
"The Antiquary," vol. xii. pp. 121-2, and there is a similar story connected 
with the parish church of Lambeth. 1 

Regarding the Norfolk tradition of the lucky and generous Pedlar, Blom- 
field says that the north aisle of the church of Swaffam (or Sopham) was 
certainly built by one John Chapman, who was churchwarden in 1462 ; but he 
thinks that the figures of the pedlar etc. were only put " to set forth the name 
of the founder : such rebuses are frequently met with on old works.' 1 The 

1 Apropos to dreams, there is a very amusing story, entitled "Which WM Che 
Dream?' 1 in Mr. F. H. Balfour's " Leaves from my Chinese Scrap Book," p. 106-7 
(London : Triibner, 1887). 

Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

ttory is also told in Abraham de la Prynne's Diary under date Nov. 10, 1699, 
as " a constant tradition " concerning a pedlar in Sojfham. 

Such is the close resemblance between the Turkish version of the Dream and 
that in the tale .of Zayn al-Asnam that I am disposed to consider both as having 
been derived from the same source, which, however, could hardly have been 
the story told by EMshdki. In Zayn al-Asnam a shaykh appears to the prince 
in a dream and bids him hie to Egypt, where he will find heaps of treasure ; 
in the Turkish story the shaykh appears to the poor water-carrier three times 
and bids him go to Damascus for the like purpose. The prince arrives at 
Cairo and goes to sleep in a mosque, when the shaykh again presents himself 
before him in a dream and tells him that he has done well in obeying him he 
had only made a trial of his courage : " now return to thy capital and I will 
make thee wealthy" ; in the Turkish story the water-carrier also goes into 
a mosque at Damascus and receives a loaf of bread there from a baker. When 
the prince returns home the shaykh appears to him once more and bids him 
take a pickaxe and go to such a palace of his sire and dig in such a place, 
where he should find riches ; in the Turkish story the water-carrier having 
returned to his own house, the shaykh comes to him three times more and 
bids him search near to where he is and he should find wealth. The discovery 
by Zayn al-Asnam of his father's hidden treasure, after he had recklessly 
squandered all his means, bears some analogy to the well-known ballad of the 
"Heir of Linne," who, when reduced to utter poverty, in obedience to his 
dying father's injunction, should such be his hap, went to hang himself in the 
b lonely lodge " and found there concealed a store of gold. 

With regard to the second part of the tale of Zayn al-Asnam the Quest of 
the Ninth Image and the Turkish version of which my friend Mr. Gibb has 
kindly furnished us with a translation from the mystical work of 'AU 'Aziz 
Efendi, the Cretan, although no other version has hitherto been found, 1 I have 
fittle doubt that the story is of either Indian or Persian extraction, images and 
pictures being abhorred by orthodox (or sunni) Muslims generally ; and such 
also, I think, should we consider all the Arabian tales of young men becoming 
madly enamoured of beautiful girls from seeing their portraits though we can 
readily believe that an Arab as well as a Persian or Indian youth might fall in 
love with a pretty maid from a mere description of her personal charms, as we 
are told of the Bedouin coxcomb Amarah in the Romance of Antar. If the 
Turkish version, which recounts the adventures of the Prince Abd es-Samed in 
quest of the lacking image (the tenth, not the ninth, as in the Arabian) was 
adapted from Zayn al-Asnam, the author has made considerable modifications 
in re-telling the fascinating story, and, in my opinion, it is not inferior to the 

1 The story in the Turkish collection, " Al-Faraj ba'd al-Shiddah," where it forms the 
8th recital, is doubtless identical with our Arabian version, since in both the -King ot the 
Genie figures, which is not the case in Mr. Gibb's story. 

The Tale of Zayn Al-Asnam. 563 

Arabian version. In the Turkish, the Prince's father appears to him in a vision 
of the night, 1 and conducts him to the treasure-vault, where he sees the vacant 
pedestal and on it the paper in which his father directs him to go to Cairo and 
seek counsel of the Shaykh Mubarak, who would instruct him how to obtain the 
lacking image ; and the prince is commissioned by the shaykh to bring him 
a spotless virgin who has never so much as longed for the pleasures of love, 
when he should receive the image for his reward. The shaykh gives him 
a mirror which should remain clear when held before such a virgin, but become 
dimmed when reflecting the features of another sort of girl ; also a purse which 
should be always full of money.* In the Arabian story the Shaykh Mubarak 
accompanies Zayn al-Asnam in his quest of the image to the land of Jinnistdn, 
the King whereof it is who requires the prince to procure him a pure virgin and 
then he would give him the lacking image. In the Turkish version the prince 
Abd es-Samed proceeds on the adventure alone, and after visiting many places 
without success he goes to Baghdad, where by means of the Imam he at last 
finds the desiderated virgin, whom he conducts to Mubarak. In the Arabian 
story the Imam, Abu Bakr (Haji Bakr in the Turkish), is at first inimical 
towards the prince and the shaykh, but after being propitiated by a present 
of money he is all complaisance, and, as in the Turkish, introduces the 
prince to the fallen vazfr, the father of the spotless virgin. The sudden con- 
version of the Imam from a bitter enemy to an obliging friend is related 
with much humour : one day denouncing the strangers to the folk assembled 
in the mosque as cutpurses and brigands, and the next day withdrawing hit 
statement, which he says he had made on the information of one of the 
prince's enviers, and cautioning the people against entertaining aught but 
reverence for the strangers. This amusing episode is omitted in the Turkish 
version. In one point the tale of Zayn al-Asnam has the advantage of that 
of Abd es-Samed : it is much more natural, or congruous, that the King of 
the Genii should affect to require the chaste maiden and give the prince 
magical mirror which would test her purity, and that the freed slave 
Mubarak should accompany the prince in his quest. 

1 Although this version is not preceded, as in the Arabian, by the Dream of Riches, 
yet that incident occurs, I understand, in separate form in the work of 'All 'Aziz. 

* Sir Richard has referred, in note 2, pp. 23, 24, to numerous different magical tests 
of chastity etc., and I may here add one more, to wit, the cup which Oberon, King 
of the Fairies, gave to Duke Huon of Bordeaux (according to the romance which 
recounts the marvellous adventures of that renowned Knight), which filled with wine in 
the hand of any man who was out of " deadly sin " and attempted to drink out of it, but 
was always empty in the hands of a sinful man. Charlemagne was shown to be sinful 
by this test, while Duke Huon, his wife, and a companion were proved to be free from 
sin. In my " Popular Tales and Fictions " the subject of inexhaustible purses etc. is 
treated pretty fully they frequently figure in folk-tales, from Iceland to Ceylon, from 
Japan to the Hebrides. 

Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 


THOSE scholars who declared a number of the tales in Galland's " Milie et une 
Nuits '' to be of his own invention, because they were not found in any of the 
Arabic MS. texts of The Nights preserved in European libraries, were uncon- 
sciously paying that learned and worthy man a very high compliment, since 
the tales in question are among the best in his work and have ever been, and 
probably will continue to be, among the most popular favourites. But the fact 
that Galland seized the first opportunity of intimating that two of those tales 
were not translated or inserted by himself ought to have been alone amply 
sufficient presumptive evidence of his good faith with regard to the others. 

A friendly reviewer of my " Popular Tales and Fictions " etc. states that 
modern collectors of European Mdrchen, though "working from 100 to 150 
years after the appearance of the ' Thousand and One Nights,' in European 
literature, have not found the special versions therein contained distributed 
widely and profusely throughout Europe," and that my chapter on Aladdin is 
proof sufficient that they have not done so. The reviewer goes on to say that 
I cite " numerous variants, but, save one from Rome, variants of the theme, 
not of the version j some again, such as the Mecklenburg and Danish forms, 
are more primitive in tone ; and all lack those effective and picturesque details 
which are the charm of the Arabian story, and which a borrower only inter- 
ested in the story as a story might just be expected to retain." 1 

But it is not contended that the folk-tales of Europe owe much, if indeed 
anything at all, to the " Arabian Nights," which is not only as it now exists a 
comparatively modern work Baron de Sacy has adduced good reasons for 
placing the date of its composition in the middle of the 9th century of the 
Hijra, or about 1446 A.D. but was first made known in Europe so late as the 
first quarter of the last century. Several of the tales, and incidents of the 
tales, in the "Thousand and One Nights" were current in Europe in the I2th 
century imported by the Moors of Spain, and by European travellers, 
pilgrims, and minstrels from the East. Thus the Arabian tale of the Ebony 
(or Enchanted) Horse is virtually identical with the Hispano-French romance 
of Cleomades and Claremonde ; that of Prince Kamar al-Zaman is fairly 
represented by the romance of Peter of Provence and the Fair Maguelone. 
The episode of Astolphe and Joconde in Ariosto's " Orlando Furioso " is 
identical with the opening story of The Nights which constitutes the frame of 
the collection. 11 The Magnetic Rock (or rock of adamant) which figures in the 
adventures of Sindbdd occurs in the popular German story of " Herzog Ernst 
von Baiern," which is extant in a Latin poem that cannot be later than the 

1 "The Athenaeum," April 23, 1887, p. 542. 

8 SeeM. Eugene Leveque's Les Mythes et les Legendes de 1'Inde et la Perse" 
(Paris, 1880), p. 543, where the two are printed side by side. This was pointed out 
more than seventy years ago by Henry Weber in his Introduction to " Tales of the 
East," edited by him. 

Aladdin; or, The Wonderful Lamp \ 565 

1 3th century and is probably a hundred years earlier. 1 The Valley of Diamonds 
in the History of Sindbdd is described by Marco Polo, who travelled in the 
East in the I3th century ; moreover, it had been known in Europe from the 
4th century, when the story connected with it was related by Epiphanius, 
bishop of Salamis, who lays the scene in Scythia, while Marco Polo and the 
author of Sindbad's Voyages both place it in India, where the fiction probably 
had its origin. 

When we find a popular {i.e. oral) European tale reproduce the most minute 
details of a story found in The Nights, we should conclude that it has been 
derived therefrom and within quite recent times, and such I am now disposed 
to think is the case of the Roman version of Aladdin given by Miss Busk 
under the title of " How Cajusse was Married," notwithstanding the circum- 
stance that the old woman from whom it was obtained was almost wholly 
illiterate. A child who could read might have told the story out of Galland to 
his or her nurse, through whom it would afterwards assume local colour, with 
some modifications of the details. But stories having all the essential features 
of the tale of Aladdin were known throughout Europe long before Galland's 
work was published, and in forms strikingly resembling other Asiatic versions, 
from one of which the Arabian tale must have been adapted. The incidents 
of the Magician and Aladdin at the Cave, and the conveying of the Princess 
and the vazfr's son three nights in succession to Aladdin's house (which 
occurs, in modified forms, in other tales in The Nights), I consider as the work 
of the Arabian author. Stripped of these particulars, the elements of the 
tale are identical in all versions, Eastern and Western : a talisman, by means 
of which its possessor can command unlimited wealth, &c. ; its loss and the 
consequent disappearance of the magnificent palace erected by supernatural 
agents who are subservient to the owner of the talisman ; and finally its 
recovery together with the restoration of the palace to its original situation. 
The Arabian tale is singular in the circumstance of the talisman (the Lamp) 
being recovered by human means by the devices of the hero himself, in fact ; 
since in all the European and the other Asiatic forms of the story it is 
recovered by, as it was first obtained from, grateful animals. To my mind, 
this latter is the pristine form of the tale, and points to a Buddhist origin- 
mercy to all living creatures being one of the leading doctrines of pure 

The space at my disposal does not admit of the reproduction in cztento 
of the numerous versions or variants of Aladdin : a brief outline of their 
features will however serve my purpose. In the tale of Maruf the Cobbler, 
which concludes the Bufak and Calcutta printed texts of The Nights, we 
have an interesting version of Aladdin. The hero runs away from his shrewish 
wife and under false pretences is married to a king's daughter. He confesses 

1 Also in the romance of Duke Huon of Bordeaux and the old French romance of the 
Chevalier Bctinus. The myth was widely spread in the Middle Ages. 

Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

his imposture to the princess, who loves him dearly, and she urges him to flee 
from her father's vengeance and not to return until his death should leave the 
throne vacant ; and having furnished him with money, he secretly quits the city 
at daybreak. After riding some distance, he begins to feel hungry, and seeing 
a peasant ploughing a field he goes up to him and asks for some food. The 
peasant sets off to his house for eatables, and meanwhile Marrif begins to plough 
a furrow, when presently the ploughshare strikes against something hard, which 
he finds to be an iron ring. He tugs at the ring and raises a slab, which dis- 
covers a number of steps, down which he goes and comes into a cavern filled 
with gold and precious stones, and in a box made of a single diamond he finds 
atalismanicring, on placing which on his finger a monstrous figure appears and 
expresses his readiness and ability to obey all his commands. In brief, by 
means of this genie, the hero obtains immense wealth in gold and jewels, and 
also rich merchandise, which enable him to return to the city in the capacity of 
a merchant, which he had professed himself when he married the princess. The 
vazi'r, who had from the first believed him to be an arrant impostor, lays a plot 
with the King to worm out of him the secret of his wealth, and succeeds so well 
at a private supper, when Maruf is elevated with wine, that he obtains possession 
of the ring, summons the genie, and causes him to carry both the King and 
Maruf into a far distant desert. He then compels the other ministers and the 
people to acknowledge him as king, and resolves to marry the princess. She 
temporises with him ; invites him to sup with her ; plies him with wine, induces 
him to throw the ring into a corner of the room, pretending to be afraid of the 
demon who is held captive in it ; and when he has become insensible (in plain 
English, dead drunk), she seizes the ring, summons the genie, and commands 
him to secure the vazir and bring back her father and husband, which he does 
" in less than no time." The vazfr is of course put to death, and the princess 
takes charge of the ring for the future, alleging that neither the King nor her 
husband is to be trusted with the custody of such a treasure. 

Another Arabian version is found as Sir Richard Burton points out, note 
2, p. 159 in "The Fisherman's Son," one of the tales translated by Jonathan 
Scott from the Wortley- Montague MS. text of The Nights, where the hero finds 
a magic ring inside a cock : like Aladdin, he marries the King's daughter and 
has a grand palace built for him by the genii. The ring is afterwards disposed 
of to a Jew, in the same manner as was the Lamp to the Magician, and the 
palace with the princess is conveyed to a distant desert island. The fisherman's 
son takes to flight. He purchases of a man who offered them for sale a dog, 
a cat, and a rat, which turn out to be well-disposed magicians, and they recover 
the ring from the Jew's mouth while he is asleep. The ring is dropped into the 
sea accidentally while the animals are crossing it to rejoin their master, but is 
brought to the hero by a fish which he had returned to the sea out of pity in his 
fisherman days. The genie conveys the palace back again, and so on. In 
a Mongolian version ( 4< Siddhi Kur ") a young merchant parts with all his wares 
to save a mouse, an ape, and a bear from being tortured to death by boys. One 

Aladdin; or, Thi Wonderful Lamp. 567 

of those creatures procures for him a wishing-stone, by means of which he has 
a grand palace built and obtains much treasure. He foolishly exchanges his 
talisman with the chief of a caravan for all their gold and merchandise, 
and it is afterwards restored to him by the grateful and ingenious animals. In 
a Tamil version referred to by Sir Richard, p. 51, note I which occurs in 
the " Madanakamarajankadai," a poor wandering young prince buys a cat 
and a serpent ; at his mother's suggestion, he sets the serpent at liberty and 
receives from its father a wishing ring. He gets' a city built in the jungle or 
rather where the* jungle was and marries a beautiful princess. An old hag is 
employed by another King to procure him the princess for his wife. She 
wheedles herself into the confidence of the unsuspecting young lady, and learn- 
ing from her the properties of the ring, induces her to borrow it of her husband 
for a few minutes, in order that she (the old trot) might apply it to her head to 
cure a severe headache. No sooner has she got possession of the ring than she 
disappears, and having delivered it to the other King, he " thought " of the 
princess, and in the twinkling of an eye she is carried through the air and set 
down before him. The ring is recovered by means of the cat which the hero 
had fostered, and so on. 

Sir Richard has referred to a number of Italian versions (p. 51, note i), which 
will be found epitomised in a most valuable and interesting paper, by my late 
friend Mr. H. C. Coote, on the sources of some of M. Galland's Tales, in the 
First Part of the Folk- Lore Record for 1880 ; and, in conclusion, I may briefly 
glance at a few other European variants. Among those which not only bear a 
close analogy one to another but also to the Asiatic versions cited above are the 
following: No. 15 of M. Leger's French collection of Slav Tales is a Bohemian 
version, in which the hero, Jenik, saves a dog, a cat, and a serpent from being 
killed From the serpent's father he gets an enchanted watch (evidently a 
modern substitute for a talismanic stone, or ring), which procures him a splendid 
palace and the King's daughter for his bride. But the young lady, unlike the 
Princess Badr al-Badur with Aladdin, does not love Jenik, and having learned 
from him the secret of his great wealth, she steals the talisman and causes a 
palace to be built in the middle of the sea, where she goes to live, after making 
Jenik's palace disappear. Jenik's faithful dog and cat recover the talisman, 
Which, as in the Arabian story of the Fisherman's Son, is dropped in the sea 
while they are swimming back and restored by a fish. In No. 9 of M. Dozon's 
" Contes Albanais '' the hero saves a serpent's life and gets in return a wishing- 
stone and so on. The talisman is stolen by a rascally Jew on the night of the 
wedding, and the palace with the princess is transported to the distant sea-shore. 
The hero buys a cat and feeds it well. He and his cat arrive at the spot where 
the palace now stands, and the cat compels the chief of a colony of mice to steal 
the talisman from the Jew while he is asleep. A popular Greek version in 
riahn's collection combines incidents found in Aladdin and in the versions in 
which grateful animals play prominent parts : The hero rescues a snake which 
tome boys are about to kill and gets in reward from. the snake's father a seal- 

Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

ring, which he has only to lick and a black man will present himself, ready to 
obey his orders. As in Aladdin, the first use he makes of the talisman is to 
have his mother's cupboard filled with dainty food. Then he bids his mother 
"go to the King, and tell him he must give me his daughter in marriage." 
After many objections, she goes to deliver her message to the King, who replies 
that if her son build a castle larger than his, he shall have the princess to wife. 
The castle is built that same night, and when the mother goes next morning 
to require the King's performance of his promise, he makes a farther stipulation 
that her son should first pave the way between the two castles with gold. 
This is done at once, and the King gives the hero his daughter. Here the 
resemblance to the Aladdin story ceases and what follows (as well as what 
precedes) is analogous to the other Asiatic forms. The princess has a black 
servant of whom she is enamoured. She steals the ring and elopes with her 
sable paramour to an island in the sea, where she has a castle erected by the 
power of the ring. The black man sleeps with the ring under his tongue, but 
the hero's dog takes the cat on his back and swims to the island ; and the cat 
contrives to get the ring and deliver it to her master, who straightway causes 
the castle to be removed from the island, then kills the black man, and after- 
wards lives happily with the princess. In a Danish version (Prof. Grundtvig's 
" Danske Folkeaventyr ") a peasant gets from an aged man a wishing-box, and 
henceforward lives in grand style. After his death the steward and servants 
cheat his son and heir, so that in ten years he is ruined and turned out of house 
and home. All the property he takes with him is an old sheepskin jacket, in 
which he finds the wishing-box, which had been, unknown to him, the cause of 
his father's prosperity. When the "slave " of the box appears, the hero merely 
asks for a fiddle that when played upon makes everybody who hears it to dance. 1 
He hires himself to the King, whose daughter gives him, in jest, a written 
promise to marry him, in exchange for the fiddle. The King, when the hero 
claims the princess, insists on her keeping her promise, and they are married. 
Then follows the loss of the wishing-box, as in the Greek version, only in place 
of a black man it is a handsome cavalier who is the lady's paramour. The 
recovery of the box is accomplished by very different means, and may be passed 
over, as belonging to another cycle of tales. 2 

It is perhaps hardly worth while to make a critical analysis of the tale of 
Aladdin, since with all its gross inconsistencies it has such a hold of the popular 
fancy that one would not wish it to be otherwise than it is. But it must have 

1 Cf. the magic horn that Duke Huon of Bordeaux received from Oberon King of 
the Fairies, which caused even, the Soudan of Babylon to caper about in spite of himself; 
and similar musical instruments in a hundred different tales, such as the old English 
poem of "The Friar and the Boy," the German tale (in Grimm) of "The Jew among 
Thorns," the " Pied Piper of Hamelin," &c. 

2 Not distantly related to stories of this class are those in which the hero become* 
possessed of some all-bestowing object a purse,- a box, a table-cloth, a sheep, a donkey, 
etc. which being stolen from him he recovers by means of a magic club that on being 
commanded rattles on the pate and ribs of the thief and compels him to restore the 

Aladdin; or, The Wonderful Lamp. 


occurred to many readers that the author has blundered in representing Che 
Magician as closing the Cave upon Aladdin because he refused to give up the 
Lamp before he had been helped out. As the lad was not aware of the pro- 
perties of the Lamp, he could have had no object in retaining it for himself, 
while the Magician in any case was perfectly able to take it by /orce from him. 
And if he wished to do away with Aladdin, yet incur no " blood-guiltiness * 
(see ante, p. 78 and note), he might surely have contrived to send him down 
into the Cave again and then close it upon him. As to the Magician giving his 
ring to Aladdin, I can't agree with Sir Richard in thinking (p. 72, note 3) that 
he had mistaken its powers ; this seems to me quite impossible. The ring was 
evidently a charm against personal injury as well as a talisman to summon an 
all-powerful and obedient genie. It was only as a charm that the Magician 
placed it on Aladdin's finger, and, as the Hindustani Version explains, he had 
in his rage and vexation forgot about the ring when he closed the entrance to 
the Cave. It appears to me also incongruous that the Lamp, which Aladdin 
found burning, should afterwards only require to be rubbed in order to cause 
the genie to appear. One should have supposed that the lighting of it would 
have been more natural or appropriate ; and it is possible that such was in the 
original form of the Aladdin version before U was reduced to writing, since we 
find something of the kind in a Mecklenburg version given in Grimm, under 
the title of " Das blaue Licht*' A soldier who had long served his King is at 
last discharged without any pay. In the course of his wanderings he comes to 
the hut of an old woman, who proves to be a witch, and makes him work for 
her in return for his board and lodging. One day she takes him to the edge of 
a dry well, and bids him go down and get her the Blue Light which he would 
find at the bottom. He consents, and she lets him down by a rope. When he 
has secured the Light he signals to the old witch to draw him up, and when 
she has pulled him within her reach, she bids him give her the Light ; he 
refuses to do so until he is quite out of the well, upon which she lets him fall 
to the bottom again. After ruminating his condition for some time he be- 
thinks him of his pipe, which is in his pocket he may as well have a smoke 
if he is to perish. So he lights his pipe at the Blue Light, when instantly there 
appears before him a black dwarf, with a "hump on his back and a feather in 
his cap, who demands to know what he wants, for he must obey the possessor of 
the Blue Light. The soldier first requires to be taken out of the well, and next 
the destruction of the old witch, after which he helps himself to the treasures 
in the hag's cottage, and goes off to the nearest town, where he puts up at 
the best inn and gets himself fine clothes. Then he determines to requite the 
King, who had sent him away penniless, so he summons the Dwarf ' and orders 

1 The Dwarf had told the soldier, on leaving him after killing the old witch, that 
should his services be at any other time required, he had only to light bis pipe at the 
Blue Light and he should instantly appear before him. The tobacco-pipe must be 
considered as a recent and quite unnecessary addition to the legend : evidently all the 
power of summoning the Dwarf was in the Blue Light, since he tells the soldier when 
he first appears before him in the well that he must obey its lord and master. 

570 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

him to bring the King's daughter to his room that night, which the Dwarf does, 
and very early in the morning he carries her back to her own chamber in the 
palace. The princess tells Tier father that she has had a strange dream of 
being borne through the air during the night to an old soldier's house. The 
King says that if it was not a dream, she should make a hole in her pocket and 
put peas into it, and by their dropping out the place where she was taken to 
could be easily traced. But the Dwarf when he transports her the second night 
discovers the trick, and strews peas through all the other streets, and the 
only result was the pigeons had a rare feast. Then the King bids the princess 
hide one of her shoes in the soldier's room, if she is carried there again. A 
search is made for the shoe in every house the next day, and when it is found 
in the soldier's room he runs off, but is soon caught and thrown into prison. 
In his haste to escape he forgot to take the Blue Light with him. He finds 
only a ducat in his pocket, and with this he bribes an old comrade whom he 
sees passing to go and fetch him a parcel he had left at the inn, and so he gets 
the Blue Light once more. He summons the Dwarf, who tells him to be of 
good cheer, for all will yet be well, only he must take the Blue Light with him 
when his trial comes on. He is found guilty and sentenced to be hung upon 
the gallows-tree. On his way to execution he asks as a last favour to be 
allowed to smoke, which being granted, he lights his pipe and the Dwarf 
appears. " Send," says the soldier" send all these people to the right about ; 
as for the King, cut him into three pieces." The Dwarf lays about him with a 
will, and soon makes the crowd scuttle off. The King begs hard for his life, 
and agrees to let the soldier have the princess for his wife and the kingdom 

Thus, it will be seen, popular tales containing all the essential elements of 
the story of Aladdin are spread over Europe, though ha,rdly any of the versions 
was probably derived from it ; and the conclusion at which I have arrived is 
that those elements, or incidents, have been time out of mind the common 
property of European and Asiatic peoples, and that the tale of Aladdin may be 
considered as an almost unique version. The Mecklenburg legend i the only 
variant which has the incident of the Magician requiring the Lamp before 
helping the hero out of the Cave and that of the transporting of the princess 
from her palace to the hero's house during the night, but these are not, I 
think, sufficient evidence that it was adapted from Galland. 

The royal command that all shops are to be closed and everybody must 
keep within doors while the Princess Badr al-BaoMr proceeds to the bath and 
Aladdin's playing the part of Peeping Tom of Coventry occur in many Eastern 
stories and find a curious analogue in the Adventures of Kurroglti, the cele- 
'brated robber-poet, as translated by Dr. Alexander Chodzko in his " Popular 
Poetry of Persia," printed for the Oriental Translation Fund, and copies of that 
work being somewhat scarce, I daresay the story will be new to most of my 
readers : 

Aladdin ; or, The Wonderful Lamp. 571 

Listen now to the tale about the Princess Nighara, daughter of the Turkish 
sultan Muriel. In the neighbourhood of Constantinople lived a man who was 
known there under the name of Belli Ahmad. One day the Princess Nighara 
went out for a walk through the bazars of Constantinople. At the same time 
Kurroglu's fame spread over all Turkey ; everybody was telling stories about 
him, and all were struck with wonder. The Princess Nighara's fond heart 
particularly was filled with an ardent wish of peeing this extraordinary hero, 
and she often thought in her mind, " O my God, when will you allow me to 
behold Kurroglu ?" It happened that while Belli Ahmad was taking a walk in 
the bazars of Istambvil, he looked and beheld on the platform of the building 
daroghs beating drums, whilst all the inmates of the baza>, the workmen as 
well as the merchants, were flying in a great hurry after having left their shops 
ajar. ** Why are they thus running ? " inquired Belli Ahmad of a Turk. " Dost 
thou know nothing ? Then listen : Our king, Sultan Murad, is gone on a 
pilgrimage to Mecca. His son Burji Sultan reigns until his father's return. 
He has a sister whose name is the Princess Nighara. Every Friday she goes 
to pray in the great mosque. The Sultan's will is that during the passage of 
the princess through the bazdrs, no man should remain there, but that all the 
shops be left open. This is the reason of this panic and flight. As soon as 
the princess has passed, the merchants and workmen will return to their 
hops again. 11 

Belli Ahmad said in his heart, " Thy name is Belli Ahmad, and shalt thou 
not see this beautiful Princess Nighara ? If not, thou art unworthy of the name 
of Belli 1 Ahmad." He then looked to the right and left and entered stealthily 
into a greengrocer's shop enclosed within a few boards. The train of the 
princess now appeared. First passed with their whips farashes and yassdls, 
who led the procession and were followed by eunuchs with canes of office 
(ckogan) in their hands. At last appeared the Princess Nighara, surrounded 
by a score of waiting-women. She walked with a downcast countenance in 
front of them, and bending her head towards the ground said to herself, " O 
thou earth on which my foot is treading, I beseech thee, receive my prayer 1 " * 
Belli Ahmad saw and heard her through the chinks of the boards behind which 
he sat concealed. When Nighara saw the shop with vegetables she wondered 
why it should be the only shop enclosed with boards whilst all the other shops 
were standing open. She then said to her waiting-women, " What is the rea- 
son of this ? Whilst goldsmiths who possess a capital of a hundred thousand 
tomans have left their shops open, how is it that this petty merchant of vege- 
tables, whose poor shop used always to be open, has shut it up to-day? There 
must be something extraordinary in all this. Break down the enclosure, my 
girls, and throw the boards aside." 

1 Belli signifies famous, or notorious. 

1 This voung lady's notion of the '* function of Prayer " was, to say the least, peculiar, 
in thus addressing her petition to the earth instead of to Heaven. 


572 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

Belli Ahmad heard, and his soul was on the point of making its exit. He 
threw himself with his face downwards as if he was prostrated by a severe 
illness. When her orders had been executed Nighara entered the shop. 
Perceiving a fellow stretched out his whole length and embracing the floor 
with both hands, she kicked him with her foot, 1 exclaiming, " Who art thou 
that wallowest in the dirt ? " Belli Ahmad sprang to his feet and bowing to the 
Princess said. " Lady, I am a stranger here. God preserve you from being in 
a strange land anywhere ! I saw that the merchants of the bazdr were beaten 
and driven away, and I was frightened. But what was I to do ? If I should 
hide myself in some rich shop I might be taken for a thief. I have therefore 
chosen this miserable hovel, where nothing can be found except greens, onions, 
and mouldy biscuits. And even if there were in it a few copper pieces, the 
owner at his departure must have taken them away. Pardon me, Princess ; my 
soul was at stake and I hid myself." 

Nighara inquired, " Stranger, what countryman art thou ? " w I am a 
native of Erzerum." " Hast thou seen in those parts the Castle of Chamley- 
bill ? " 2 " Yes, lady, I have seen it." " In that valley lives a man named Kur- 
roglu : didst thou see him ? " " O my Princess, I am one of his servants ; I am 
a slave purchased with his gold." " Canst thou deliver him a letter from me ? * 
" And wherefore not, fairest ? Thou hast only to write and entrust it to me/' 
The Princess Nighara immediately wrote a letter to Kurroglu with her own 
hand. And what did she write ? Here it is : " O thou who art called Kur- 
roglu, the glory of thy name has thrown a spell over the countries of Turkey. 
I have heard that thou hast carried away Ayvaz from the town of Orfah. My 
name is Princess Nighara, Sultan Murad's daughter. I tell thee, that thou 
rrtayest learn if thou dost not know it, that for a long time I have felt an ardent 
desire of seeing thee. If thou art distinguished by courage, come to Istambul 
and carry me away." 

And the bold Kurroglu, when he read the lady's billet, assumed the dress 
of a Haji, gained access to the seraglio gardens on the pretence that he 
was entrusted with a private message to the Princess Nighara from her 
father the Sultan, whom he had met on the road to Mecca, and carried 
the amorous young lady to his fortress of Chamley-bill. The story, together 
with the scene between the princess and Kurroglu in the gardens and the 
palace, is, no doubt, a true picture of the "ways" of Turkish ladies of high 
degree in former times, and confirms much that Sir Richard has stated regarding 
Eastern women in his notes to The Nights and his Terminal Essay. 


figures in a story which in the first part bears some analogy to the celebrated 

1 The gentle, amiable creature ! 

* Chamley bill was, says Dr. Chodzko, a fort built by Kurroglu, the ruins of which 
are still to be seen in the valley of Salmas, a district in the province of Azerbaijan. 

AlatMi* ; or, Tfu Wonderful Lamp. 573 

Arabian talc, and which occurs in an interesting little work, now apparently 
forgotten, entitled "The Orientalist; or, Letters of a Rabbi. With Notes by 
James Noble, Oriental Master in the Scottish Naval and Military Academy," 
Edinburgh, 1831. The substance of the story is as follows (p. 118 ft*".): 

An aged Dervish falls ill in the house of a poor widow, who tends him with 
great care, with which he is so touched that he offers to take charge of her only 
son Abdallah. The good woman gladly consents, and the Dervish sets out 
accompanied by his young ward, having intimated to his mother that they must 
perform a journey which would last about two years. One day they arrived at 
a solitary place, and the Dervish said to Abdallah, " My son, we are now at the 
end of our journey. I shall employ my prayers to obtain from Allah that the 
earth shall open and make an entrance wide enough to permit thee to descend 
into a place where thou shalt find one of the greatest treasures that the earth 
contains. Hast thou courage to descend into the subterranean vault ?" Ab- 
dallah swore he might depend upon his obedience and zeal. Then the Dervish 
lighted a small fire, into which he cast a perfume ; he read and prayed for some 
moments, after which the earth opened, and he said to the young man, " Thou 
mayest now enter. Remember that it is in thy power to do me a great service, 
and that this is perhaps the only opportunity thou shalt ever have of testifying 
to me that thou art not ungrateful. Do not let thyself be dazzled by all the 
riches that thou shalt find there : think only of seizing upon an iron candle- 
stick with twelve branches, which thou shalt find close to the door. That is 
absolutely necessary to me ; come up immediately and bring it to me." 

Abdallah descended, and, neglecting the advice of the Dervish, filled his vest 
and sleeves with the gold and jewels which he found heaped up in the vault, 
whereupon the opening by which he had entered closed of itself. He had, 
however, sufficient presence of mind to seize the iron candlestick, and en- 
deavoured to find some other means of escape from the vault. At length he 
discovers a narrow passage, which he follows until he reaches the surface of 
the earth, and looking about for the Dervish saw him not, but to his sur- 
prise found that he was close to his mother's house. On showing his wealth 
to his mother it all suddenly vanished. But the candlestick remained. He 
lighted one of the branches, upon which a dervish appeared, and after 
turning round for an hour; he threw down an asper (about 3 farthings) and 
vanished. Next night he put a light in each of the branches, when twelve 
dervishes appeared, and after continuing their gyrations an hour, each threw 
down an asper and vanished. 

Thus Abdallah and his mother contrived to live for a time, till at length he 
resolved to carry the candlestick to the Dervish, hoping to obtain from him the 
treasure which he had seen in the vault. He remembered his name and city, 
and on reaching his dwelling he found the Dervish living in a magnificent 
palace with fifty porters at the gate. Quoth the Dervish, when Abdallah 
appeared before him, " Thou an an ungrateful wretch ! Hadst thou known 
the value of the candlestick, thou wouldst never have brought it to me. I will 

574 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

show thee its true use." Then the Dervish placed a light in each branch, 
whereupon twelve dervishes appeared and began to whirl, but on his giving 
each a blow with a cane in an instant they were changed into twelve heaps 
of sequins, diamonds and other precious stones. 

Ungrateful as Abdallah had shown himself, yet the Dervish gave him two 
camels laden with gold and a slave, telling him he must depart the next 
morning. During the night Abdallah stole the candlestick and placed it at 
the bottom of one of his sacks. Ih the morning he took his leave of the 
generous Dervish and set off. When about Tialf a day's journey from his own 
city he sold the slave, that there should be no witness to his former poverty, 
and bought another in his stead. Arriving home, he carefully placed his loads 
of treasure in a private chamber, and then put a light in each branch of the 
candlestick, and when the twelve dervishes appeared, as usual, he dealt each a 
blow with a cane. But he had not observed that the Dervish employed his left 
hand, and he had naturally used his right, in consequence of which the twelve 
dervishes each drew from under their robes a heavy club and beat him till he 
was nearly dead, and then vanished, as did also the treasure, the camels, the 
slave, and the wonder-working candlestick. 

It is to be regretted that the author has not stated the sources whence he 
drew his stories, but that they are without exception of Eastern extraction does 
not admit of any doubt: some are taken from the " Panchatantra," " Hitopadesa," 
or " Anvdr-i Suhaylf," and others are found in other Asiatic story-books. I have 
however not met with the foregoing elsewhere than in Noble's little volume. 
The beginning of the story is near akin to that of Aladdin : for the wicked 
magician who pretends to take the tailor's son under his care we have a dervish 
who in good faith takes charge of the son of a poor widow who had nursed him 
through a severe illness. The cave scene is very similar in both, only the 
magician performs diabolical incantations, while the dervish practises " white 
magic " and prays to Allah for assistance. The twelve-branched candlestick 
takes the place of the Wonderful Lamp. Like Aladdin, young Abdallah is shut 
in the cavern, though not because he refused to give up the candlestick until he 
was safe above ground again, but because his cupidity induced him to pocket 
some of the treasures which filled the cave. 

There is a strong Indian even Buddhistic flavour in the story of Abdallah 
and the Dervish, and the apparition of the twelve whirling fakfrs, who when 
struck with a cane held in the left hand fall into so many heaps of gold coin, 
has its analogue in the " Hitopadesa " and also in the Persian Tales of a Parrot 
(" Tutf Ndma "). The loth Fable of Book iii. of the " Hitopadesa " goes thus : 
In the city of Ayodhya (Oude) there was a soldier named Churamani, who, 
being anxious for money, for a long time with pain of body worshipped the 
deity the jewel of whose diadem is the lunar crescent. 1 Being at length purified 

1 f.*. Kuvera, the god of wealth. 

Aladdin ; or t The Wonderful Lamp. 57S 

from his sins, in his sleep he had a vision in which, through the favour of the 
deity, he was directed by the lord of the Yakshas 1 to do as follows : " Early in 
the morning, having been shaved, thou must stand, dub in hand, concealed 
behind the door of thy house ; and the beggar whom thou seest come nto the 
court thou wilt put to death without mercy by blows of thy staff. Instantly the 
beggar will become a pot full of gold, by which thou wilt be comfortable the 
rest of thy life." These instructions being followed, it came to pass accordingly. 
But the barber who had been brought to shave him, having witnessed it all, said 
to himself, " O, is this the mode of gaining treasure ? Why, then, may not I 
also do the same?" From that day forward the barber in like manner, with 
club in hand, day after day awaited the coming of the beggar. One day a 
beggar being so caught was attacked by him and killed with the stick, for which 
offence the barber himself Was beaten by the King's officers and died. 

The same story is differently told, at greater length and with considerable 
humour, in Nakhshabfs Parrot- Book, but the outline of it can only be given 
here : A rich merchant named Abd-el- Malik resolved to give all his substance 
to the poor and needy before he departed this life. At midnight an apparition 
stood before him in the habit of a fakfr and thus addressed him : " I am the 
apparition of thy good fortune and the genius of thy future happiness.* When 
thou, with such unbounded generosity, didst bequeath all thy wealth to the poor, 
I determined not to pass by thy door unn<5ticed, but to enrich thee with an inex- 
haustible treasure, suitable to the greatness of thy capacious soul. To accomplish 
which I will every morning in this shape appear to thee ; thou shalt strike me a 
few blows on the head, and I shall instantly fall at thy feet, transformed into an 
image of gold. From this take as much as thou shalt have occasion for ; and 
every member that shall be separated from the image shall instantly be replaced 
by another of the same precious metal." 3 In the morning a covetous neighbour 
named Hajm visited the merchant, and soon after the apparition presented 
itself. Abd-el-Malik at once arose and after striking it several blows on the 
head with a stick, it fell down and was changed into an image of gold. He took 
what sufficed for the day's needs and gave the larger portion to his visitor. 
When Hajm the covetous returned to his own house he pondered what he had 
seen, and concluding it would be as easy for him to convert faki'rs into gold, invited 
to a feast at his house all the fakirs of the province. When they had feasted to 
their hearts' content, Hajm seized a heavy club and began to unmercifully 
belabour his guests till he broke their heads and " the crimson torrent stained 
the carpet of hospitality.'' The cries of the fakfrs soon brought the police to 
their assistance, and a great crowd of people gathered outside the house. Hajm 
was immediately haled before the magistrate, and attempted to justify his 

1 The attendants of Kuvera. 

1 That every man has his " genius " of good or evil fortune is, I think, essentially a 
Buddhistic idea. 

* Such being the case, what need was there for the apparition presenting itself every 
morning P but no matter ! 

Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

conduct by giving an account of what he had seen done in the house of Abd- 
el- Malik. The merchant was sent for and declared Hajm to be mad, no better 
proof of which could be desired than his treatment of the fakfrs. So Hajm the 
covetous was sent forthwith to the hospital for lunatics. 


READERS of The Nights must have observed that a large number of the tales 
begin with an account of a certain powerful king, whose dominions were almost 
boundless, whose treasury overflowed, and whose reign was a blessing to his 
people ; but he had one all-absorbing care he had no son. Thus in the tale 
of Khudadad we read that in the city of Harrdn there dwelt a sultan " of 
illustrious lineage, a protector of the people, a lover of his lieges, a friend of 
mankind, and renowned for being gifted with every good quality. Allah 
Almighty had bestowed upon him all that his heart could desire, save the boon 
of a child ; for though he had lovely wives within his haram-door and concubines 
galore [far too many, no doubt !], he had not been blessed with a son," and so 
forth. This is the " regulation " opening of by far the greater number of Asiatic 
stones, even as it was de rigueur for the old pagan Arab poets to begin their 
kasidas with a lamentation for the departure of a fair one, whether real or 
imaginary. The Sultan of our story is constantly petitioning Heaven for the 
boon of a son (who among Easterns is considered as the " light of the house "), 
and at length there appears to him in his slumbers a comely man who bids him 
go on the morrow to his chief gardener and get from him a pomegranate, of 
which he should eat as many seeds as he pleases, after which his prayers for 
offspring should be granted. This remedy for barrenness is very common in 
Indian fictions (to which I believe Khudadad belongs), only it is usually the 
king's wives who eat the seeds or fruit. 1 A few parallels to the opening of our tale 
from Indian sources may prove somewhat interesting, both to students of popular 
fictions and to those individuals who are vaguely styled *' general readers.*' 

1 Pandit S. M. Natesa Sastrl, in " Indian Notes and Queries," for March, 1887, says 
that women swallow large numbers of an insect called pillai-puchchi (son-insect : gryllas) 
in the hope of bearing sons ; they will also drink the water squeezed from the loin-cloth 
of a sany&si [devotee] after washing it for him ! Another correspondent in the same 
periodical, Pandit Putlibdi K. Raghunathje", writes that Hindu women, for the purpose 
of having children, especially a son, observe the fourth lunar day of every dark fortnight 
as a fast, and break their fast only after seeing the moon, generally before 9 or 10 p.m. 
A dish of twenty-one small, marble-like balls of rice is prepared, in one of which is put 
some salt. The whole dish is then served up to the woman,, and while eating it she 
should first lay her hands on the ball containing salt, as it is believed to be a positive 
sign that she will be blessed with a son. In that case she should give up eating the rest, 
but otherwise she should go on eating till she lays her hands on the salted ball. The 
Pandit adds, that the observance of this ball depends on the wish of the woman. She 
may observe it on only one, five, seven, eleven^or twenty-one lunar fourth days, or 
(haturthi. Should she altogether fail in picking out the salted ball first, she may be sure 
of remaining barren all her life long. 

Khudadad and his Brothers. 577 

A Kashmfrf tale, entitled "The Four Princes," translated by the Rev. J. 
Hinton Knowles, in the " Indian Antiquary," 1886,' thus begins : In days long 
since gone by there lived a king most clever, most holy, and most wise, who 
was a pattern king. His mind was always occupied with plans for the improve- 
ment of his country and people ; his darbdr was open to all ; his ear was ever 
ready to listen to the petition of the humblest subject ; he afforded every facility 
for trade ; he established hospitals for the sick, inns (sard'e) for travellers, and 
large schools for those who wished to learn. These and many other such things 
he did. Nothing was left undone that ought to be done, and nothing was done 
that ought not to have been done. Under such a wise, just, and beneficent 
ruler the people of course lived very happily. Few poor or unenlightened or 
wicked persons were to be found in the country. But the great and good king 
had not a son. This was an intense sorrow to him the one dark cloud that 
now and again overshadowed his otherwise happy and glorious life. Every day 
he prayed earnestly to Siva to grant him an heir to sit upon the throne after 
him. One day Siva appeared to him in the garb of a yogf,* and bade him ask 
a boon and it should be granted. " Take these four fruits," said Siva, " and givt 
them to your wife to eat on such a day before sunrise. Then shall your wife 
give birth to four sons who will be exceedingly clever and good." The king 
follows these instructions and in due course his wife is delivered of four sons at 
one birth and thereupon dies. The rest of the story is a variant of the Tamil 
romance " Alake*sa KathaY' ' and of " Strike, but hear ! * in Rev. Lai Behari Day's 
" Folk-Tales of Bengal." 

This is how the Tamil story of The Four Good Sisters begins (" Folk-Lorc 
In Southern India," Part Hi., by Pandit S. M. Natesa Sdstrf 4 ) : In the town of 
Taftjai there reigned a king named Hariji, who was a very good and charitable 
sovereign. In his reign the tiger and the bull drank out of the same pool, the 
serpent and the peacock amused themselves under the same tree ; and thus 
even birds and beasts of a quarrelsome and inimical disposition lived together 5 
like sheep of the same flock. While the brute creation of the great God was thus 
living in friendship and happiness, need it be said that this king's subjects led a 
life of peace and prosperity unknown in any other country under the canopy of 
heaven ? But for all the peace which his subjects enjoyed, Hariji himself had 
no joy : his face was always drooping, his lips never moved in laughter, and he 
was as sad as sad could be, because he had no son. After trying in vain the 

1 I am glad to see among Messrs. Trubner and Co.'s announcements of forthcoming 
publications Mr. Knowles' collection of "Folk-Talcs of Kashmir" in popular handy* 
volume form. 

* A holy man whose austerities have obtained for him supernatural powers. 

' Also called "Story of the King and his Four Ministers." There is another but 
wholly different Tamil romance entitled the " Alak6sa KathaY' in which a king's 
daughter becomes a disembodied evil spirit, haunting during the night a particular 
choultry (or serai) for travellers, and if they do not answer aright to her cries the 
strangles them and vampyre-like sucks their blood. 

4 The Pandit informs me that his " Folk-Lore jn Southern India " wil be completed 
at press and issued shortly at Bombay. (London agents, Messrs. Trubner & Co.) 

578 Appendix : Variants and Analogues. 

distribution of charitable gifts which his ministers and the priests recommended, 
the king resolves to retire into the wilderness and there endeavour to propitiate 
Mahe*svara \i.e. Siva], hoping thus to have his desire fuiailed. He appoints his 
ministers to order the realm during his absence, and dotting his royal robes 
clothes himself in the bark of trees and takes up his abode in the desert. After 
practising the most severe austerities for the space of three years, Siva, mounted 
on his bull, with his spouse Pdrvati by his side, appears before the hermit, who 
is overjoyed at the sight of the deity. Siva bids him ask any boon and it should 
be granted. The royal ascetic desires to have a son. Then says Siva : " For 
thy long penance we grant thy request. Choose then a son who shall always 
be with thee till death, but shall be the greatest fool in the whole world ; or four 
daughters who shall live with thee for a short time, then leave thee and return 
before thy death, but who shall be the incarnation of learning. To thee is left 
to choose which thou wilt have," and so saying, the deity gives him a mango 
fruit for his wife to eat, and then disappears. The king elects to have the four 
learned daughters, whose history is very entertaining. 

Another tale in the Pandit's collection (No. 4) informs us that once upon 
a time in a town named Vafijaima*nagar there ruled a king named Siva"cha*r. 
He was a most just king and ruled so well that no stone thrown up fell down, 
no crow pecked at the new-drawn milk, the lion and the bull drank water from 
the same pond, and peace and prosperity reigned throughout the kingdom. 
Notwithstanding all these blessings, care always sat on his face. His days and 
nights he spent in praying that God might bless him with a son. Wherever he 
saw///#/ trees he ordered Brdhmans to circumambulate them. 1 Whatever 
medicines the doctors recommended he was ever ready to swallow, however bitter 
they might be. At last fortune favoured Sivdchdr ; for what religious man fails 
to obtain his desire ? The king in his sixtieth year had a son, and his joy 
knew no bounds. 

In like fashion does the Persian (< Sindibdd Na*ma " begin : There reigned 
in India a sage and mighty monarch, the bricks of whose palace were not of 
stone or marble but of gold ; the fuel of whose kitchen was fresh wood of aloes j 
who had brought under the signet of his authority the kingdoms of Rum and 
Abyssinia ; and to whom were alike tributary the Ethiop Mahdraj and the 
Roman Kaysar. He was distinguished above all monarchs for his virtue, 
clemency, and justice. But although he was the refuge of the Khalifate, he 
was not blessed with an heir : life and the world appeared profitless to him, 
because he had no fruit of the heart in the garden of his soul. One night, 

1 In the " Kath Sarit Sagara," Book ii., ch. 14, when the King of Vatsa receives 
the hand of Vasavadatta, '* like a beautiful shoot lately budded on the creeper of love," 
she walks round the fire, keeping it to the right, on which Prof. Tawney remarks that 
* the practice of walking round an object of reverence, with the right hand towards it, 
has been exhaustively discussed by Dr. Samuel Fergusson in his paper, ' OB the cere- 
monial turn called Desiul,' published in the Proceedings of tkc Royal Irisk Academy, for 
March 1877 (vol i., series ii., No. 12). He shows k t0 hate esieted among the ancieat 
Romans as well as the Celts... . Dr. Fergussos is of opinia that this movament was 
a symbol of the cosmical rotation, an imitation of the apparent course of the sun in the 

Khudadad and his Brothers. 579 

while reclining on his couch, sad and thoughtful, consumed with grief like a 
morning taper, he heaved a deep sigh, upon which one of his favourite wives (he 
had a hundred in his harem), advancing towards him and kissing the ground, 
inquired the cause of his distress. He discloses it. His wife consoles him, 
encourages him to hope, and assures him that if he prayed, his prayers would 
be answered ; but that at all events it was his duty to be resigned to the will of 
God. " Prayer is the only key that will open the door of difficulty." The king 
fasted for a whole week and was assiduous in his devotions. One night he 
prayed with peculiar earnestness and self-abasement till morning. The com- 
panion of his couch was one of his wives, fairer than the sun and the envy of a 
peri. He clasped her in his embrace, exclaiming, " There is no strength, no 
power, save in God ! " and he felt assured in his heart that his prayer was 
granted. In due time a son was born to him, and, eager to show his gratitude, 
he bestowed munificent gifts and lavished his treasures on all his subjects. 

The seventh of Lai Behari Day's ' Folk-Tales of Bengal " opens as followi : 
Once on a time there reigned a king who had seven queens. He was very 
sad, for the seven queens were all barren. A holy mendicant, however, one 
day told the king that in a certain forest there grew a tree, on a branch of 
which hung seven mangoes ; if the king himself plucked those mangoes and 
gave one to each of the queens they would all become mothers. So the king 
went to the forest, plucked the seven mangoes that grew upon one branch, and 
gave a mango to each of the queens to eat. In a short time the king's heart 
was filled with joy, as he heard that the seven queens were pregnant. In Miss 
Stokes' " Indian Fairy Tales," p. 91, Rajd Barbdl receives from an ascetic 160 
KcM fruits, one of which he is to give to each of his 160 wives, who would have 
each a son. Similar instances occur in Steel and Temple's "Wide Awake 
Stories ", from the Panjdb and Kashmfr, pp. 47 and 290, and in Nate*sa Sdstrfs 
"Dravidian Nights' Entertainments" (a translation of the Tamil romance 
entitled " Madanakdmarajankadai '*), pp. 55, 56. Among biblical instances of 
women having offspring after being long barren are : Sarah, the wife of 
Abraham (Gen. ch. xv. 2-4, xxi. I, 2) ; Rachel, the wife of Jacob (Gen. ch. xxx., 
I, 22, 23) ; and Elisabeth, the wife of Zacharias, the high-priest, who were the 
parents of John the Baptist (Luke, ch. i.). Whether children be a "blessing," 
notwithstanding all that has been said and sung about the exquisite joys of 
paternity and maternity, is perhaps doubtful, generally speaking : one thing is 
certain, that many an honest fellow has had too much cause to "wonder why 
the devil he got an heir ! " l 

1 The affection of parents for their children is often a blind instinct, and some- 
times selfish, though, after all, there is doubtless truth in these lines: 
" A mother's love ! 
If there be one thing pare, 
Where all beside is sullied, 
That can endure 
When all else pass away : 
If there be aught 

Surpassing human deed, or word, or thought. 
It is a mother's love ' " 

Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

Although no version or variant of the story of Khudadad and his Brothers 
has yet been found besides the one in the Turkish collection " Al-Faraj ba'd 
al-Shiddah," yet the elements of which it is composed occur in many European 
and Asiatic tales. As we have in Galland a story of sisters who envied their 
cadette, so, by way of justice to the " fair sex," we have likewise this tale of 
envious brothers, which is a favourite theme of popular fictions, only in the 
story of Khudadad, the brothers were not at first aware of the hero's kinship to 
them, though they had been informed of it when they most ungratefully cut 
and slashed him with their swords as he lay asleep by the side of his beauteous 
bride the Princess of Daryabdr. 

Sometimes it is not a brother, or brothers, but a treacherous friend or a 
secret cowardly rival, who attempts the life of the hero and claims the credit 
and reward for his bold achievement. Many examples must occur to readers 
familiar with Icelandic, Norwegian, and German folk-tales, which need not here 
be cited. In the old French romance of the Chevalier Berinus and his gallant 
son Aigres de 1'Aimant, the King of Loquiferne is in love with the Princess 
Melia, daughter of a king named Absalon, who would give her only to the 
prince who should bring with him two knights prepared to combat with and 
slay two fierce lions, or would attempt this feat himself. None of the barons 
of the King of Loquiferne offering themselves for the adventure, Aigres under- 
takes it very readily, and is accompanied by a knight named Acars, who has 
charge of a casket of jewels destined for the princess as a wedding-gift. Young 
Aigres encounters and kills the lions single-handed, and the lily-livered and 
faithless Agars envies him the glory of his exploit. On their way back to 
Loquiferne with the Princess Melia, as they pass near a deep well Agars pur- 
posely allows the casket of jewels to fall into it and pretends to be distracted at 
the misfortune. But the gallant Aigres securing one end of his horse's reins 
to the top of the well descends by this improvised rope, and when he dives 
into the water to recover the casket the rascal Agars cuts the reins and compels 
the princess and her maid to follow him. His triumph is brief, however, for 
Melia and her maid are taken from him, without his striking a blow in their 
defence, by a king who is in love with the princess. Agars proceeds to the 
court of the King of Loquiferne and tells him how the lady had been snatched 
out of his hands by a king who attacked him with a great army while Aigres 
had fled like a craven. Meanwhile Aigres contrives to get out of the well, and 
finds his steed and armour close by : he is fortunate in rescuing the princess 
and her maid from the king who had taken them from Agars, and arriving 
at the court of Loquiferne denounces Agars as a coward and traitor, and the 
princess Melia confirms his assertions ; so the carpet-knight is for ever disgraced. 
Another example not very generally known is found in the Urdu romance, 
" Gul-i Bakdwali " : When the hero, Taj al-Maluk, the youngest son of King 
Zayn al-Maluk, is born, the astrologers cast his horoscope and predict that 
the king will lose his sight as soon as he looks upon him. In order to 
prevent such a calamity, the king causes the child and his mother to be 

Khudadad and his Brothers. 581 

placed in a house far distant from the city, where Zayn al-Maluk grows 
op into a handsome, courageous youth. By chance he meets his father, 
the king, while the latter is hunting, and the king no sooner casts his 
eyes on the youth than he becomes blind* The royal physicians tell him 
that only the Rose of BakdwaU can restore his sight, and the four other 
sons of the king set out together to procure this wonderful flower. They fall 
victims to the wiles of a courtesan, who wins all their money at play and 
ultimately imprisons them in her house. In the meantime Taj al-Maluk has 
started on the same errand ; he outwits the courtesan, obtains the liberation 
of his brothers, and then journeys to Jinnistdn, where, by the help of a friendly 
demon, he plucks the Rose in the garden of the beauteous fairy BakdwaU, and 
retraces his way homeward. Meeting with his four brothers on the road, he 
acquaints them of his success, and on their doubting the virtue of the flower, 
it is applied to the eyes of a blind man, and his sight is instantly restored. 
Upon this the brothers take the flower from Taj al-Maluk by force and hasten 
with it to their father. But the hero's friends the demons build for him a 
splendid palace, and the fame of his wealth soon reaches the court of his father, 
who, with the four brothers and the ministers of state, visits him, and after a 
great feast Taj al-Maluk makes himself known to the king and relates the 
whole story of how he procured the flower that had restored his sight. The 
king falls upon his son's neck and weeps tears of joy, saying, ' You have 
restored the light of my eyes by the Rose of Bakdwalf, and by the sight of you 
the door of cheerfulness has been opened in my sorrowful heart It is incum- 
bent on me to make known this enlivening news to your mother, who has 
looked out for you with anxiety, and I must cause her, who has been afflicted 
with grief at your absence, to drink the sherbet of the glad tidings of your 
safety." Then the king went to Taj al-Maluk's mother, made many apologies 
for his ill-treatment of her, exalted her higher than she was previously, and 
gave her the joyful news of her son's arrival. The remainder of the romance 
recounts the marvellous adventures of the hero in fairyland, whither he pro* 
ceeds to rejoin Bakdwalf, and where he undergoes many strange transformations; 
but ultimately all is "merry as marriage bells.'' Nothing is said about the 
punishment or pardon of the treacherous brothers, but doubtless in the original 
form of the story the hero acted as generously towards them as did Khudadad 
when his father would have put the forty brothers to death. It seems some- 
what strange that after Khudadad's brothers had killed him (as they believed) 
they did not take the Princess Daryabdr away with them, which generally 
happens in stories of this kind. 

582 Appendix; Variants and Analogues. 


/ S^- 
AN incident in the Muhammedan version of the legend of the Seven Sleepers 
may have furnished a hint for this well-told tale : When the evil-minded 
Dekianus views the Hid Treasure, which he had covenanted with the aged 
man who read the Tablet for him and conducted him to the spot should 
be equitably divided betwixt them when he had beheld with wonder and 
astonishment the incalculable riches contained in the seven chambers, he 
says within himself, "And must I share this with the old man?" Then he 
ponders and thinks, " Nay, but I will give him a goodly portion ; '' but finally 
he resolves to give him nothing nay more, to take away his life so that there 
should be none on earth besides himself acquainted with the source of his 
wealth. In vain does the old man bid him take all the treasure and swear 
that he will ever preserve the secret : Dekianus smote him with his sword 
so that he died. 

There is a tale in the Persian story-book " Shamsah wa Kahkahah " (also 
entitled " Mahbub al-Kalub") which bears some analogy to the story of the 
Blind Man, Baba Abdullah. A skilful geomancer is desired by a tradesman 
to cast his horoscope. He does so, and informs the tradesman that he is 
to find a treasure. The man is incredulous, but after the operation is 
repeated with the same result at length becomes convinced of the accuracy 
of the geomancer's calculations, locks his door, and forthwith they both begin 
to dig the floor. They come upon a large stone which on removal is found 
to have covered a well. The geomancer lowers the tradesman down it in 
a basket, which the latter fills with gold and silver and precious stones, and 
It is drawn up by the geomancer. When this has been repeated several 
times and the geomancer views the immense quantity of glittering treasure 
heaped up beside him, covetous thoughts enter his mind, and he determines 
to leave the tradesman to his fate at the bottom of the well, take all the 
wealth for himself, and live in comfort and luxury the rest of his days. 
Accordingly he does not again let the basket down, and the poor tradesman, 
suspecting his iniquitous design, calls out piteously to his perfidious friend, 
imploring him not to leave him there to perish, and swearing that the 
treasure should be equally shared as between brothers. But the covetous 
geomancer is deaf to his appeal, and begins to consider how the treasure 
might be conveyed to his own house without attracting the notice of any of 
the folk of the quarter, and in the midst of his cogitations he falls asleep. 
Now it happened that the poor tradesman had an enemy who had long 
waited for an opportunity to do him a personal injury, and that very 
night be came to the house, and by means of a rope with a hook which 

Th* Story of the Blind Man, Baba Abdullah. 58 J 

fce fastened to the wall he climbed on to the roof and descended into the 
place where the geomancer was sleeping. The man, mistaking him for 
the tradesman, seized the geomancer and with a sharp awl pierced his 
eyes, blinding him for ever. But, having thus effected his revenge as he 
thought, in groping his way out of the house he stumbled into the well 
and broke his foot. The tradesman taking him for the geomancer, come 
for more gold, upbraided him for his insatiable avarice, and the man, in 
his turn, supposing him to have been thrown into the well by the trades- 
man, replied, " Be satisfied ; I have punished him who cast you into this 
place," but as he began to howl from the pain of his broken foot, the trades- 
man knew that he was not the geomancer. Next morning the tradesman's 
son arrives from a long trading journey, with much gold and merchandise 
and many slaves. On entering his father's house he is astounded to perceive 
the open well and by the side of it a vast heap of treasure and a man holding 
both hands to his eyes and wailing bitterly, lamenting the covetousness which 
had caused him the loss of his eyesight. The young man sends a slave down 
into the well and the first person drawn up is the tradesman, who is both 
surprised and overjoyed to behold his son once more, and tells him the whole 
story. His enemy is then taken out and is dismayed to find that he has blinded 
the wrong man. Both the geomancer and the tradesman's enemy are pardoned, 
but the latter dies soon after, while the geomancer retires to a cave in the 
mountains, where every morning and evening two small loaves are thrown in to 
him by an unknown hand , and during the rest of his life he never ceased to 

repeat this districh : 

If you possess one barley grain of justice, 
You will never have half a grain of sorrow. 

But much more closely resembling the story of Baba Abdullah is a tale in 
the Persian romance which recounts the imaginary adventures of Hatim Ta'f. 
A blind man is confined in a cage which is suspended from a branch of a 
tree, and constantly exclaims, " Do evil to none ; if you do, evil will over- 
take you." Hatim having promised to mend his condition and relieve him, he 
relates his history as follows : 

" I am by occupation a merchant, and my name is Hamfr. When I became 
of age my father had finished the building of this city, and he called the same 
after my name. Shortly after, my father departed on a sea voyage, and left me 
in charge of the city. I was a free-hearted and social young man, and so in a 
short time expended all the property left under my care by my father. Thus 
I became surrounded with poverty and want ; and as I knew that my father 
had hidden treasures somewhere in the house, I resolved to discover them if 
possible. I searched everywhere, but found nothing ; and, to complete my 
woe, I received the news of my father's death, the ship in which he sailed 
being wrecked. 

Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

" One day as I was sauntering, mournful and dejected, through the bazdr, 
I espied a learned man who cried out, * If any one has lost his money by 
theft or otherwise, my knowledge of the occult sciences enables me to recover 
the same, but on condition that I receive one fourth of the amount.' When I 
heard this seasonable proclamation, I immediately approached the man of 
science, and stated to him my sad condition and how I had been reduced from 
affluence to poverty. The sage undertook to restore my wealth, and above all 
to discover the treasures concealed in my father's house. I conducted him 
to the house and showed him every apartment, which he carefully examined 
one after another. At length by his art he discovered the stores we were 
in search of ; and when I saw the gold and silver and other valuables, which 
exceeded calculation, the demon of fraud entered my heart, and I refused to 
fulfil my promise of giving a fourth of the property to the man of wisdom. I 
offered him only a few small pieces of silver ; instead of accepting which, he 
stood for a few moments in silent meditation, and with a look of scorn said, 
1 Do I thus receive the fourth part of your treasure which you agreed to give 
me ? Base man, of what perjury are you guilty ? ' On hearing this I became 
enraged, and having struck him several blows on the face, I expelled him from 
my house. In a few days, however, he returned, and so far ingratiated him- 
self into my confidence that we became intimate friends ; and night and day 
he displayed before my sight the various hidden treasures contained within the 
bowels of the earth. One day I asked him to instruct me in this wonderful 
science, to which he answered that no instruction was requisite. * Here,' said 
he, ' is a composition of surma, and whoever applies the same to his eyes, to 
him will all the wealth of this world become visible.' l * Most learned sir,' 
I replied, ' if you will anoint mine eyes with this substance, I promise to share 
with you the half of all such treasures as I may discover.' * I agree/ said 
my friend ; * meanwhile let us retire to the desert, where we shall be free 
from interruption.' 

" We immediately set out, and when we arrived there I was surprised 
at seeing this cage, and asked my companion whose it was. I received for 
answer, that it belonged to no one. In short, we both sat down at the foot of 
this tree, and the sage, having produced the surma from, his pocket, began to 
apply it to my eyes. But, alas ! no sooner had he applied this composition 
than \ became totally deprived of sight. In a voice of sorrow I asked him 
why he had thus treated me, and he replied, ' Such is the reward of treachery ; 
and if you wish to recover your sight, you must for some time undergo penance 
in this cage. You must utter no complaint and you shall exclaim from 
time to time, * Do no evil to any fone ; if you do, evil will befall you.' I en- 

1 Surma is a collyrium applied to the edges of the eyelids to increase the lustre of the 
eyes. A Persian poet, addressing the damsel of whom he is enamoured, says, " For eyes 
so intoxicated with love's nectar what need is there of surma? " This part of the story 
seems to be garbled ; in another text of the romance of Hatim Ta'f it is only after the 
surma has been applied to the covetous man's eyes that he beholds the hidden treasures, 

History of Sidi Nu'man. $8| 

treated the sage to relieve me, saying, * You are a mere mortal like myself, 
and dare you thus torment a fellow-creature ? How will you account for your 
deeds to the Supreme Judge?' He answered, * This is the reward of your 
treachery.' Seeing him inexorable, I begged of him to inform me when and how 
my sight was to be restored ; and he told me, that a noble youth should one day 
visit me, and to him I was to make known my condition, and farther state, that 
in the desert of Himyar there is a certain, herb called the Flower of Light, 
which the youth was to procure and apply to my eyes, by means of which my 
sight should be restored. '* 

When the man in the cage had ended his story, the magnanimous Hatim bade 
him be of good cheer, for he would at once endeavour to relieve him. By the aid 
of the fairies, who carry him through the air for the space of seven days, he 
arrives in the desert where the Flowers of Light shine brilliant as lamps on a 
festival night, diffusing the sweetest perfume far and wide; and recking naught 
for the serpents, scorpions, and beasts of prey which infested the place (for he 
had a talisman that protected him), he advances and plucks three of the largest 
and most brilliant flowers. Returning in the same manner as he had gone 
thither, he reaches the spot where the blind man Hamir is imprisoned : taking 
down the cage, he releases the wretched man, compresses the stalk of the 
flower so that the juice drops upon his sightless eyeballs, and when this has 
been repeated three times Hamfr opens his eyes, and seeing Hatim falls pros* 
trate at his feet with a profusion of thanks. 

Although there are sjome differences in the details of the story of Baba 
Abdullah and that of Hamfr, as above, yet the general similarity between 
them is sufficient to warrant the conclusion that if one was not adapted from 
the other, both must have been derived from the same source; and here we 
have, I think, clear evidence of the genuineness of another of the tales 
which Galland was believed to have invented himself. 


IT is curious to find this current as a folk-tale at Palena, in the Abruzzi, without 
any material variation except in the conclusion. My friend Mr. E. Sidney 
Hartland has favoured me with the following abstract of the Italian version, 
as given in vol. iii. of the " Archivio per lo studio delle Tradizioni Popolari " 
(Palermo, 1882), p. 222 : 

There was once a husband and wife. The wife says that she cannot eat 
anything, and only picks a few grains of rice with a large pin. Her husband 
asks why she eats nothing, and she answers that she does not want to eat. 
Meantime she goes out secretly every night, and the husband begins to have 
suspicions of her. One night he follows her softly, and finds she goes to the 

5 86 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

burial ground, where she meets with certain female companions. They open 
a grave and feed on the flesh of the dead. The next morning the husband 
cooks rice again, and the wife picks up a few grains of it with a pin as before. 
The husband exclaims, " What ! you enjoy the flesh of dead men, and over 
rice you are so finical as to eat it with a pin ! " The wife is so enraged at 
learning that her husband knows of her doings that she goes to the water- 
bucket, fills a small bottle from it, and having muttered certain words over the 
water flings it upon him and he instantly becomes transformed into a dog. A 
provision merchant sees him running about, and takes and sets him on his 
counter. When the people come to buy provisions the dog examines the 
money to see if it be good, and the false coin he throws on the ground. One 
day a man comes to buy bacon and offers false coin. The provision merchant 
refuses to take it ; they dispute over the matter, and it is referred to the dog, 
who throws the money on the ground. The man is astonished, and returning 
home tells his wife, who at once says that the dog is not a dog, and desires her 
husband to bring her the animal that she may see it. The man returns to the 
provision merchant and begs him to lend him the dog for a little while, and 
takes it home. The wife, who is a companion of the wife of him who has been 
changed into a dog, and understands witchcraft, fills a bottle with water, 
pronounces certain words over it, and throws the water upon the dog, who 
immediately becomes a man again, and she advises him to do to his wife as 
she had done to him, and imparts the secret to him. As soon as he returns 
home he fills the bottle with water from the bucket, says the words he had 
learned, and throws the water over his wife, who becomes a mare. He drives 
her out of the house and beats her as flax is beaten. To every one who asks 
why he is thrashing the mare he tells his story, and the people say, " Serve her 
right ! " This goes on for some time. At last, when the husband sees that his 
wife has voided enough foam from the mouth, with another dash of water he 
changes her back to her proper form, and henceforward she eats whatever is 
set before her, obeys her husband in all things, and never goes out by night 
again. So they live long, happy and contented. 

This version from the Abruzzi so closely resembles the story of Sidi Nu'mdn 
that we should perhaps be justified in concluding it to have been directly 
derived from Galland's Nights, in the absence of any Venetian version, which 
might well have been imported independently from the East ; but however this 
may be, the story in Galland bears unquestionable internal evidence that it is a 
genuine Arabian narrative, having nothing peculiarly European in its details. 

A somewhat similar story is quite familiar to me, but I cannot at present 
call to mind whether it occurs in a Persian collection or in The Nights, in which 
the woman going out when she thinks her husband asleep, the latter follows her 
to a hut at some distance which she enters, and peeping into the hut, he sees 
a hideous black give her a severe beating for not coming sooner, while she 
pleads that she could not venture to quit the house until her husband was sound 

History of Khwajak Hasan al-Habbal. 

asleep. The two carouse together, and by-and-by the black going outside for 
a purpose, the husband strikes off his head with his sword and then conceals 
himself close by. The woman, after waiting some time, goes out to see what 
is detaining her paramour, and finding his headless body, she moans over it in 
great sorrow, and then taking the corpse on her back carries it away and throws 
it into the river. Her husband hastens home before her, and so she suspects 
nothing. Some days-after, when she refuses to do some light work because of 
her physical weakness, her husband can no longer control himself, and tells 
her that she had strength enough to carry on her back the body of her black 
paramour, and so on. 1 

The ghoul-wife of Arabian tales, who eats little or nothing at home, has her 
counterpart in the rdkshasf of Indian fictions, who secretly devours antelopes 
etc. There x are many parallels in The Nights and other Asiatic story-books to 
the incident of Sidi Nu'man being changed back into his proper form, the most 
noteworthy being perhaps the case of the Second Calender in the shape of a 
monkey, or ape, whom the princess, an adept in white magic, at once recognises 
as a man and veils her face, as does the young woman in the case of Sidi 
Nu'man : but while the Calender is restored to his own form, the princess, alas ! 
perishes in her encounter with the genie who had transformed him. In most 
of the Arabian tales of magical transformations of men and women into beasts 
the victims are ultimately restored to their natural forms, but in the Indian 
romance of the princes Somasekhara and Chitrasekhara, a wicked king 
named Ugrabihu is permanently changed by some water taken from a magic 
fountain into a monkey and sold to a beggar, who compels him to perform 
tricks in public for his benefit. Heywood, in his " History of Women " (Book 
viii.) cites some curious European stories of men being transformed into 
donkeys by eating a certain kind of cheese. 


How this entertaining story found its way into North Germany- and nowhere 
else in Europe, so far as I am aware it is not easy to say, but its twin-brother 
seems to be orally current there, in all essential details, excepting the mar- 
vellous conclusion. For the poor ropemaker, however, a struggling weaver 
tnd for the two gentlemen, Sa'd and Sa'df, three rich students are substituted. 
There does not appear (according to the version given by Thorpe in his " Yule 
Tide Stories," which he entitles, not inaptly, The Three Gifts) to be any 
difference of opinion among the students regarding the influence of Destiny, 
or Fate, upon men's fortunes : they simply give the poor weaver a hundred 
dollars, " to assist him in his housekeeping." The weaver hides the money in 

1 The tat part of the story of the Young King of the Black Isles, in The Nights, 
bears some analogy to this, but there the peramour i only ' half-killed" and the 
vindictive queen transforms her husband from the waist downwards into marble. 


$38 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

a heap of rags, unknown to his wife, who sells them to a rag-collector for a' 
trifling sum. A year afterwards the students are again passing the house of 
the weaver and find him poorer than ever. He tells them of his mishap and 
they give him another hundred dollars, warning him to be more careful with 
the money this time. The weaver conceals the dollars in the ash-tub, again 
without the cognisance of his wife, who disposes of the ashes for a few pieces 
of soap. At the end of the second year the students once more visit the 
wretched weaver, and on being informed of his loss, they throw a bit of lead 
at his feet, saying it's of no use to give such a fool money, and go away in 
a great huff. The weaver picks up the lead and places it on the window- 
sill. By-and-by a neighbour, who is a fisherman, comes in and asks for a bit 
of lead or some other heavy thing, for his net, and on receiving the lead thrown 
down by the students promises to give him in return the first large fish he 
catches. The weaver does get a fine fish, which he immediately cuts open, 
and finds in its stomach a " large stone," which he lays on the window-sill, 
where, as it becomes dark, the stone gives forth a brighter and brighter light, 
"just like a candle," and then he places it so that it illuminates the whole 
apartment. " Tfiat's a cheap lamp," quoth he to his wife : " wouldst not like 
to dispose of it as thou didst the two hundred dollars ? " The next evening a 
merchant happening to ride past the weaver's house perceives the brilliant 
stone, and alighting from his horse, enters and looks at it, then offers ten 
dollars for it, but the weaver says the stone is not for sale. " What ! not even 
for twenty dollars ? " " Not even for that.'' The merchant keeps on increasing 
his offers till he reaches a thousand dollars, which was about half its real value, 
for the stone was a diamond, and which the weaver accepts, and thus he 
becomes the richest man in all the village. His wife, however, took credit to 
herself for his prosperity, often saying to him, " How weH it was that I threw 
'away the money twice, for thou hast me to thank for thy good luck ! " and 
here the German story ends. For the turban of the ropemaker and the kite 
that carried it off, with its precious lining, we have the heap of rags and the 
rag-collector ; but the ashes exchanged for soap agrees with the Arabian story 
almost exactly. 

The incident of the kite carrying off the poor ropemaker's turban in which 
he had deposited the most part of the gold pieces that he received from the 
gentleman who believed that "money makes money" an unquestionable 
fact, in spite of our story is of very frequent occurrence in both Western and 
Eastern fictions. My readers will recollect its exact parallel in the abstract of 
the romance of Sir Jsumbras, cited in Appendix to the preceding volumes : 
how the Knight, with his little son, after the soudan's ship has sailed away 
with his wife, is bewildered in a forest, where they fall asleep, and in the 
morning at sunrise when he awakes, an eagle pounces down and carries off his 
scarlet mantle, in which he had tied up his scanty store of provisions together 
with the gold he had received from the soudan ; and how many years after 
ie found it in a bird's nest (Supp. Nights, vol. ii. p. 361 and p. 365). And, 

Hittory *f Kkwtyak Hasan al-Habbal. 589 

Rot to multiply examples, a similar incident occurs in the " KathA Sarit 
Sdgara," Book ix. ch. 54, where a merchant named Samudrasura is ship- 
wrecked and contrives to reach the land, where he perceives the corpse of a 
man, round the loins of which is a cloth with a knot in it. On unfastening 
the cloth he finds in it a necklace studded with jewels. The merchant proceeds 
towards a city called Kalasapuri, carrying the necklace in his hand. Over- 
powered by the heat, he sits down in a shady place and falls asleep. The 
necklace is recognised by some passing policemen as that of the king's 
daughter, and the merchant is at once taken before the king and accused of 
having stolen it. While the merchant is being examined, a kite swoops down 
and carries off the necklace. Presently a voice from heaven declares that 
the merchant is innocent, explains how the necklace came into his possession, 
and orders the king to dismiss him with honour. This celestial testimony in 
favour of the accused satisfies the king, who gives the merchant much wealth 
and sends him on his way. The rest of the story is as follows : " And after 
he had crossed the sea, he travelled with a caravan, and one day, at evening 
time, he reached a wood. The caravan encamped in the wood for the night, 
and while Samudrasura was awake a powerful host of bandits attacked it. 
While the bandits were massacring the members of the caravan, Samudrasura 
left his wares and fled, and climbed up a banyan-tree without being discovered. 
The host of bandits departed, after they had carried off all the wealth, and the 
merchant spent that night there, perplexed with fear and distracted with grief. 
In the morning he cast his eyes towards the top of the tree, and saw, as fate 
would have it, what looked like the light of a lamp, trembling among the 
leaves. And in his astonishment he climbed up the tree and saw a kite's 
nest, in which there was a heap of glittering priceless jewelled ornaments. He 
took them all out of it, and found among the ornaments that necklace which 
he had found in Svarnadvlpa and the kite had carried off. He obtained from 
that nest unlimited wealth, and descending from the tree, he went off delighted, 
and reached in course of time his own city of Harshapura. There the 
merchant Samudrasura remained, enjoying himself to his heart's content, with 
his family, free from the desire of any other wealth." 

There is nothing improbable at all events, nothing impossible in the 
History of Khwajah Hasan al-Habbdl. That he should lose the two sums of 
money in the manner described is quite natural, and the incidents carry with 
them the moral : " Always take your wife into your confidence " (but the 
Khwajah was a Muslim), Notwithstanding the great good luck which afterwards 
befell, and which, after all, was by mere chance. There is nothing improbable 
in the finding of the turban with the money intact in the bird's nest, but that 
this should occur while the Khwajah's benefactors were his guests is well, 
viry extraordinary indeed ! As to the pot of bran why, some little license 
must be allowed a story-teller, that is all that need be said ! The story from 
beginning to end is a most charming one, and will continue to afford pleasure 
to old and young to "generations yet unborn." 

jgo Appendix: Variants 


I CONFESS to entertaining a peculiar affection for this tale. It was the first 
of the tales of the " Arabian Nights Entertainments " which I read in the 
days of my " marvelling boyhood " eheii ! fugaces, &c., &c. I may therefore 
be somewhat prejudiced in its favour, just as I still consider Scott's " Waverley * 
as the best of his long series of fascinating fictions, that being the first of them 
which I read as it was the first he wrote. But " AH Baba and the Forty 
Thieves "the " open, sesame ! " " shut, sesame ! " the sackfuls of gold and 
silver and the bales of rich merchandise in the robbers' cave the avaricious 
brother forgetting the magical formula which would open the door and permit 
him to escape with his booty his four quarters hung up in terrorem and above 
all, the clever, devoted slave-girl, Mofrgiana, who in every way outwitted the 
crafty robber-chief ; these incidents remain stamped in my memory inefface- 
ably : like the initials of lovers' names cut into the bark of a growing tree, 
which, so far from disappearing, become larger by the lapse of time. To me 
this delightful tale will ever be, as Hafiz sings of something, "freshly fresh and 
newly new." I care not much though it never be found in an Arabic or any 
other Oriental dress 'but that it is of Asiatic invention is self-evident ; there 
is, in my poor opinion, nothing to excel it, if indeed to equal it, for intense 
interest and graphic narrative power in all the Nights proper. 

Sir Richard Burton has remarked, in note i, p. 369, that Mr. Coote could 
only fin.d in the south of Europe, or in the Levant, analogues of two of the inci- 
dents of this tale, yet one of those may accepted as proof of its Eastern 
extraction, namely, in the Cyprian story of u Three Eyes," where the ogre 
attempts to rescue his wife with a party of blacks concealed in bales : " The 
King's jester went downstairs, in order to open the bales and take something 
out of them. Directly he approached one of the sacks, the black man answered 
from the inside, 'Is it time, master?' In the same manner he tried all the 
sacks, and then went upstairs and told them that the sacks were full of black 
men. Directly the King's bride heard this, she made the jester and the com- 
pany go downstairs. They take the executioner with them, and go to the first 
sack. The black man says from the inside, ' Is it time ?' 'Yes,' say they to 
him, and directly he came out they cut his "head off. In the same manner they 
go to the other sacks and kill the other black men." 1 

The first part of the tale of Ali Baba ending with the death of his greedy 
brother is current in North Germany, to this effect : 

1 On the Sources of some of Galland's Tales. By Henry Charles Coote, F.S.A. 
w Folk-Lore Record," 1881, rol. iii, part 2, p. 186. 

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. 

A poor woodcutter, about to fell a beech at the back of the scattered 
ruins of the castle of Dummburg, seeing a monk approach slowly through 
the forest, hid himself behind a tree. The monk passed by and wen! 
among the rocks. The woodcutter stole cautiously after him and saw that 
he stopped at a small door which had never been discovered by the vil- 
lagers. The monk knocks gently and cries, " Little door, open 1 " and the 
door springs open. He also cries, M Little door, shut I " and the door is 
closed. The woodcutter carefully observes the place, and next Sunday goes 
secretly and obtains access to the vault by the same means as that employed 
by the monk. He finds in it "large open vessels and sacks full of old' 
dollars and fine guilders, together with heavy gold pieces, caskets filled 
with jewels and pearls, costly shrines and images of saints, which lay about 
Or stood on tables of silver in corners of the vault." He takes but a small 
quantity of the coin, and as he is quitting the vault a voice cries, "Come 
again ! w First giving to the church, for behoof of the poor, a tenth of what he 
had taken, he goes to the town and buys clothes for his wife and children, giving 
Out to his neighbours that he had found an old dollar and a few guilders under 
the roots of a tree that he had felled. Next Sunday he again visits the vault, 
this time supplying himself somewhat more liberally from the hoard, but still 
with moderation and discretion, and " Come again ! " cries a voice as he is 
leaving. He now gives to the church two tenths, and resolves to bury the rest 
of the money he had taken in his cellar. But he can't resist a desire to first 
measure the gold, for he could not count it. So he borrows for this purpose a 
corn-measure of a neighbour a very rich but penurious man, who starved him- 
self, hoarded up corn, cheated the labourer of his hire, robbed the widow and 
the orphan, and lent money on pledges. Now the measure had some cracks in 
the bottom, through which the miser shook some grains of corn into his own 
heap when selling it to the poor labourer, and into these cracks two or three 
mall coins lodged, which the miser was not slow to discover. He goes to the 
woodcutter and asks him what it was he had been measuring. " Pine-cones 
and beans." But the miser holds up the coins he had found in the cracks of 
the measure, and threatens to inform upon him and have him put to the ques- 
tion if he will not disclose to him the secret of his money. So the woodcutter 
is constrained to tell him the whole story and much against his will, but not 
before he had made the miser promise that he would give one-tenth to the 
church, he conducts him to the Vault. The miser enters, with a number of 
sacks, the woodcutter waiting outside to receive them when filled with treasure. 
But while the miser is gloating over the enormous wealth before him even 

* wealth beyond the dreams of avarice '' a great black dog comes and lays 
himself down on the sacks. Terrified at the flaming eyes of the dog, the miser 
crept towards the door, but in his fear forgot the proper words, and instead of 
saying, " Little door, open ! " he cried, " Little door, shut 1 " The woodcutter, 
having waited a long time, approached the door, and knocking gently and crying 

* Little door, open ! " the door sprang open and he entered. There lay the 

$2 Appendix : Variants and Analogue. 

bleeding body of his wicked neighbour, stretched on his sacks, but the vessels 
of gold and silver, and diamonds and pearls, sank deeper and deeper into the 
earth before his eyes, till all had completely vanished. 1 

The resemblance which this North German tale bears to the first part of 
* Ali Baba " is striking, and is certainly not merely fortuitous ; the funda- 
mental outline of the latter is readily recognisable in the legend of the Dumm- 
burg, notwithstanding differences in the details. In both the hero is a poor 
woodcutter, or faggot-maker ; for the band of robbers a monk is substituted 
in the German legend, and for the " open, sesame " and " shut, sesame," we 
have "little door, shut," and "little door, open." In both the borrowing of a 
corn-measure is the cause of the secret being revealed in the one case, to 
Kasim, the greedy brother of Ali Baba, and in the other, to a miserly old 
hunks ; the fate of the latter and the disappearance of all the treasure are 
essentially German touches. The subsequent incidents of the tale of Ali Baba, 
in which the main interest of the narrative is concentrated ; Ali Baba's carry- 
ing off the four quarters of his brother's body and having them sewed together ; 
the artifices by which the slave-girl checkmates the robber-chief and his followers 
in their attempts to discover the man who had learned the secret of the trea- 
sure-caveher marking all the doors in the street and her pouring boiling oil on 
the robbers concealed in the oil-skins in the courtyard ; these incidents seem to 
have been adapted, or imitated, from some version of the world-wide story of 
the Robbery of the Royal Treasury, as told by Herodotus, of Rhampsinitus, 
King of Egypt, in which the hero performs a series of similar exploits to re- 
cover the headless body of his brother and at the same time escape detection. 
Moreover, the conclusion of the tale of Ali Baba, where we are told he lived in 
comfort and happiness on the wealth concealed in the robbers' cave, and " in 
after days he showed the hoard to his sons and his sons' sons, and taught them 
how the door could be caused to open and shut "this is near akin to the 
beginning of Herodotus' legend of the royal treasury : the architect who built 
it left a stone loose, yet so nicely adjusted that it could not be discovered by 
any one not in the secret, by removing which he gained access to the royal stores 
of gold, and having taken what he wanted replaced the stone as before ; on 
his deathbed he revealed the secret to his two sons as a legacy for their future 
maintenance. The discovery of Ali Baba's being possessed of much money 
from some coins adhering to the bottom of the corn-measure is an incident of 
very frequent occurrence in popular fictions; for instance, in the Icelandic 

1 See Thorpe's " Yule Tide Stories," Bolm's ed., pp. 481-486. Thorpe says that 
"for many years the Dummburg was the abode of robbers, who slew the passing 
travellers and merchants whom they perceived on the road from Leipsig to Brunswick, 
and heaped together the treasures of the plundered churches and the surrounding coun- 
try, which they concealed in subterranean caverns." The peasantry would therefore 
regard the spot with superstitious awe, and once such a tale as that of Ali Baba got 
amongst them, the robbers' haunt in their neighbourhood would soon become thfe scent 
of the poor woodcutter's adventure. 

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. 593 

story of the Magic Quern that ground out gold or whatever its possessor de- 
sired (Powell and Magnusson's collection, second series) ; in the Indian tale of 
the Six Brothers (Vernieux's collection) and its Irish analogue," Little Fairly"; 
in the modern Greek popular tale of the Man with Three Grapes (Le 
Grand's French collection), and a host of other tales, both Western and 
Eastern. The fate of Ali Baba's rich and avaricious brother, envious of his 
good luck, finds also many parallels mutatis mutandis as in the story of the 
Magic Quern, already referred to, and the Mongolian tale of the poor man and 
the Dakinis, the I4th Relation of Siddhf Kur. Morgiana's counter-device of 
marking all the doors in the street, so that her master's house should not be 
recognised, often occurs, in different forms : in my work on Popular Tales and 
Fictions, vol. ii. pp. 164,165, a number of examples are cited. The pretended 
merchant's objecting to eat meat cooked with salt, which fortunately aroused 
Morgiana's suspicions of his real character for robber and murderer as he 
was, he would not be " false to his salt " 'recalls an anecdote related by 
D'Herbelot, which may find a place here, in conlusion: The famous robber 
Yacub bin Layth, afterwards the founder of a dynasty of Persian monarchs 
called Soffarides, in one of his expeditions broke into the royal palace and 
having collected a large quantity of plunder, was on the point of carrying it 
off when his foot struck against something which made him stumble. Sup- 
posing it not to be an article of value, he put it to his mouth, the better to dis- 
tinguish it From the taste he found it was a lump of salt, the symbol and 
pledge of hospitality, on which he was so touched that he retired immediately 
without carrying away any part of his booty. The next morning the greatest 
astonishment was caused throughout the palace on the discovery of the valu- 
ables packed up and ready for removal. Yactib was arrested and brought 
before the prince, to whom he gave a faithful account of the whole affair, and 
by this means so ingratiated himself with his sovereign that he employed him 
as a man of courage and ability in many arduous enterprises, in which he was so' 
successful as to be raised to the command of the royal troops, whose confidence 
in and affection for their general induced them on the prince's death to prefer 
his interest to that of the heir to the throne, from whence he afterwards spread 
his extensive conquests. 

Since the foregoing was in type I discovered that I had overlooked another 
German version, in Grimm, which preserves some features of the Arabian tale 
omitted in the legend of The Du mm burg : 

There were two brothers, one rich, the other poor. The poor brother, one 
day wheeling a barrow through the forest, had just come to a naked-Uoking 
mountain, when he saw twelve great wild men approaching, and he hid himself 

1 A Persian poet says : 

41 He who violates the rights of the bread and salt 
Breaks, for hi* wretched self, head and neck." 

594 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

in a tree, believing them to be robbers. " Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain, 
open ! " they cried, and the mountain opened, and they went in. Presently 
they came out, carrying heavy sacks. " Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain, 
shut thyself!" they cried; the mountain closed and they went away. The 
poor man went up then and cried, " Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain, open ! " 
the mountain opens, he goes in, finds a cavern full of gold, silver, and jewels, 
fills his pockets with gold only, and coming out cries, " Semsi mountain, Semsi 
mountain, shut thyself ! " He returns home and lives happily till his gold is 
exhausted. Then "he went to his brother to borrow a measure that held a 
bushel, and brought himself some more." This he does again, and this time 
the rich brother smears the inside of the bushel with pitch, and when he gets 
it back finds a gold coin sticking to it, so he taxes his poor brother with having 
treasure and learns the secret. Off he drives, resolved to bring back, not 
gold, but jewels. He gets in by saying, " Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain, 
open ! '' He loads himself with precious stones, but has forgotten the word, 
and cries only " Simeli mountain, Simeli mountain, open ! " The robbers 
return and charge him with having twice stolen from them. He vainly pro- 
tests, " It was not I," and they cut his head off. 

Here the twelve wild men represent the forty robbers, and, as in Ali Baba, it 
is the hero's brother who falls a victim to his own cupidity. In the Arabian tale 
the hero climbs up into a tree when he sees the robbers approach ; in The 
Dummburg he hides himself behind a tree to watch the proceedings of the 
monk ; and in Grimm's version he hides in a tree. On this last-cited story W. 
Grimm has the following note : " It is remarkable that this story, which is told 
in the province of Miinster, is told also in the Hartz, about The Dummburg, and 
closely resembles the Eastern story of * The Forty Thieves,' where even the 
rock Sesam, which falls open at the words Semsi and Semeli, recalls the name 
of the mountain in the German saga. This name for a mountain is, according 
to a document in Pistorius (3, 642), very ancient in Germany. A mountain in 
Grabfeld is called Similes, and in a Swiss song a Simeliberg is again mentioned. 
This makes us think of the Swiss word ' Sinel,' for ' sinbel,' round. In Meier, 
No. S3, we find ' Open, Simson.' In Prdhle's ' Marchen fur die Jugend,' No. 30, 
where the story is amplified, it is Simsimseliger Mountain. There is also a 
Polish story which is very like it." Dr, Grimm is mistaken in saying that in the 
Arabian tale the ' rock Sesam " falls open at the words Semsi and Semeli : 
even in his own version, as the brother finds to his cost, the word Simeli does 
not open the rock. In Ali Baba the word is " Simsim " (Fr. Sesame), a species 
of grain, which the brother having forgot, he cries out " Barley." The " Open, 
Simson " in Meier's version and the " Semsi " in Grimm's story are evidently 
corruptions of " Simsim," or " Samsam," and seem to show that the story did 
not become current in Germany through Galland's work. 

Dr. N. B. Dennys, in his " Folk-Lore of China, and its Affinities with that of the 
Aryan and Semitic Races," p. 134, cites a legend of the cave Kwang-sio-f oo in 

Alt Baba and the Forty Thievts. 595 

Ifcang-si, which reflects part of the tale of Ali Baba : There was in the neighbour- 
hood a poor herdsman named Chang, his sole surviving relative being a 
grandmother with whom he lived. One day, happening to pass near the cave, 
he overheard some one using the following words : " Shih mun kai, Kwai Ku 
bsen shng lai," Stone door, open ; Mr. Kwai Ku is coming. Upon this the 
door of the cave opened and the speaker entered. Having remained there for 
some time he came out, and saying, " Stone door, close ; Mr. Kwai Ku is going," 
the door again closed and the visitor departed. Chang's curiosity was 
maturally excited, and having several times heard the formula repeated, he 
waited one day until the genie (for such he was) had taken his departure and 
essayed to obtain an entrance. To his great delight the door yielded, and 
having gone inside he found himself in a romantic grotto of immense extent. 
Nothing however in the shape of treasure met his eye, so having fully explored 
the place he returned to the door, which shut at his bidding, and went home. 
Upon telling his grandmother of his adventure she expressed a strong wish to 
tee the wonderful cavern ; and thither they accordingly went together the next 
day. Wandering about in admiration of the scenery, they became separated, 
and Chang at length, supposing that his grandmother had left, passed out of 
the door and ordered it to shut. Reaching home, he found to his dismay that 
he had not yet arrived. She must of course have been locked up in the cave, 
to back he sped and before long was using the magic sentence to obtain access. 
But alas ! the talisman had failed, and poor Chang fell into an agony of 
apprehension as he reflected that his grandmother would either be starved to 
death or killed by the enraged genie. While in this perplexity the genie 
appeared and asked him what was amiss. Chang frankly told him the truth 
and implored him to open the door. This the genie refused to do, but told him 
that his grandmother's disappearance was a matter of fate. The cave demanded 
a victim. Had it been a male, every succeeding generation of his family would 
have seen one of its members arrive at princely rank. In the case of a woman 
her descendants would in a similar way possess power over demons. Somewhat 
comforted to know that he was not exactly responsible for his grandmother's 
death, Chang returned home and in process of time married. His first son duly 
became Chang tien shih (Chang, the Master of Heaven), who about A.D. 25 
was the first holder of an office which has existed uninterruptedly to the 
present day. 

596 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 


p. 405. 

Precocious Children. See note at end of the Tale, p. 416. In the 
(apocryphal) Arabic Gospel of the Saviour's Infancy is the following 
passage : 

" Now in the month of Adar, Jesus, after the manner of a King, assembled 
the boys together. They spread their clothes on the ground and he sat down 
upon them. Then they put on his head a crown made of flowers, and like 
chamber-servants stood in his presence, on the right and on the left, as if he 
was a king. And whoever passed by that way was forcibly dragged by the boys f 
saying, ' Come hither and adore the king ; then go away.' " 

A striking parallel to this is found in the beginning of the Mongolian Tales 
of Ardshi Bordshi /.#., the celebrated Indian monarch, Raja" Bhoja, as given in 
Miss Busk's " Sagas from the Far East," p. 252. 

" Long ages ago there lived a mighty king called Ardshi Bordshi. 1 In the 
neighbourhood of his residence was a hill where the boys who were tending the 
calves were wont to pass the time by running up and down. But they had also 
another custom, and it was that whichever of them won the race was king for 
the day an ordinary game enough, only that when it was played in this place 
the Boy-King thus constituted was at once endowed with such extraordinary 
importance and majesty that everyone was constrained to treat him as a real 
king. He had not only ministers and dignitaries among his playfellows, who 
prostrated themselves before him, and fulfilled all his behests, but whoever 
passed that way could not choose but pay him homage also." 2 

1 Miss Busk reproduces the proper names as they are transliterated in Julg's German 
version of those Kalmuk and Mongolian Tales from which a considerable portion of 
her book was rendered thus: Ardschi Bordschi, Rakschasas, etc. ; but drollest of all 
is "Ramajana" (Ramayana), which is right in German but not in English. 

2 The apocryphal gospels and the Christian hagiology are largely indebted to Bud- 
dhism ; e.g., the Descent into Hell, of which there is such a graphic account in the 
Gospel of Nicodemus, seems to have been adapted from ancient Buddhist legends, now 
embodied in the opening chapters of a work entitled, " Karanda-vyuha," which contain 
a description of the Boddhisattva Avalokiteswara's descent into the hell Avichi, to deliver 
the souls there held captive by Yama, the lord of the lower world. (See a paper by 
Professor E. B. Cowell, LL.D., in the "Journal of Philology," 1876, vol. vi. pp. 222- 
231.) This legend also exists in Telugu, under the title of " Sananda Charitra," of 
which the outline is given in Taylor's " Catalogue Raisonne* of Oriental MSS. in the 
Government Library, Madras," vol. ii. p. 643 : Sananda, the son of Purna Vitta and 
Bhadra Datta, heard from munis accounts of the pains of the wicked, and wishing to see 
for himself, went to Yama-puri. His coming had been announced by Naiada. Yama 
showed the stranger the different lots of mankind in a future state, in details. Sdnanda 
was touched with compassion for the miseries that he witnessed, and by the use of the 
five and six lettered spells he delivered those imprisoned souls and took them with him 
to Kailasa. Yama went to Siva and complained, but Siva civilly dismissed the appeal. 
Under the title of" The Harrowing of Hell," the apocryphal Christian legend was the 
theme of a Miracle Play in England during the Middle Ages, and indeed it seems to 
have been, in different forms, a popular favourite throughout Europe. Thus in a German 
tale Strong Hans goes to the Devil in hell and wants to serve him, and sees the pains 

Ali Khwaiah and the Merchant of Baghdad. 597 

This is followed by an analogous story to that of AH Khwajah and the 
Merchant of Baghdad, under the title of " The False Friend/' in which a mer- 
chant on a trading journey entrusts a friend with a valuable jewel to give to his 
wife on his return home, and the friend retaining it for his own use suborns two 
men to bear witness that they saw him deliver it to the merchant's wife, so the 
King dismisses the suit But the Boy- King undertakes to try the case*/* novo ; 
causes the two witnesses to be confined in separate places, each with a piece of 
clay which he is required to make into the form of the jewel, and the models 
are found to be different one from the other, and both from the shape of the 
jewel as described by the false friend. A similar story occurs in several Indian 
collections, with a Klzf instead of the Boy- King. 

A curious instance of precocity is related in the Third Book of the 
" Masnavf '' (see ante, p. 556), of which Mr. E. H. Whin fie Id gives an outline in 
his admirable and most useful abridgment of that work : The boys wished to 
obtain a holiday, and the sharpest of them suggested that when the master 
came into school each boy should condole with him on his alleged sickly 
appearance. Accordingly, when he entered, one said, U O master, how pale 
you are looking ! " and another said, " You are looking very ill to-day," and so 
on. The master at first answered that there was nothing the matter with him, 
but as one boy after another continued assuring him that he looked very 
ill, he was at length deluded into imagining that he must really be ill. So he 
returned to his house, making the boys follow him nere, and told his wife that 
he was not well, bidding her mark how pale he was. His wife assured him he 
was not looking pale, and offered to convince him by bringing a mirror ; 
but he refused to look at it, and took to his bed. He then ordered the boys to 
begin their lessons ; but they assured him that the noise made his head ache, 
and he believed them, and dismissed them to their homes, to the annoyance 
of their mothers. 

Another example of juvenile cleverness is found in a Persian collection of 
anecdotes entitled " Latd'yif At-Taw'dyif, by 'AH ibn Husain Al-Va'iz Al-Kdshifi i 
One day Nurshfrvdn saw in a dream that he was drinking with a frog out of 
the same cup. When he awoke he told this dream to his vazfr, but he knew not 
the interpretation of it. The king grew angry and said, " How long have I 
maintained thce, that if any difficulty should arise thou mightest unloose the 
knot of it, and if any matter weighed on my heart thou shouldst lighten it ? Now 
I give thee three days, that thou mayest find out the meaning of this dream, 

in which souls are imprisoned standing beside the fire. Full of pity, he lifts up the lids 
and sets the souls free, on which the Devil at once drives him away. A somewhat similar 
notion occurs in an Icelandic tale of the Sin Sacks, in Powell and Magnusson's collection 
(second series, p. 48). And in T. CroAon Croker's " Fairy Legends and Traditions of 
the South of Ireland," ed. 1828, Part ii. p. 30 ff., we read of Soul Cages at the bottom 
of the sea, containing the spirits of drowned sailors, which the bold hero Jack Docherty 
Kt free. 

598 Appendix; Variants and Analogues. 

and remove the trouble of my mind ; and if, within that space, thou art not 
successful, I will kill thee." The vazfr went from the presence of Ntirshfrvaa 
confounded and much in trouble. He gathered together all the sages and 
interpreters of dreams, and told the matter to them, but they were unable to 
explain it ; and the vazfr resigned his soul to death. But this story was told in 
the city, and on the third day he heard that there was a mountain, ten farsangs 
distant from the city, in which was a cave, and in this cave a sage who had 
chosen the path of seclusion, and lived apart from mankind, and had turned his 
face to the wall. The vazfr set out for his place of retirement, saying to himself, 
" Perhaps he will be able to lay a plaster on my wound, and relieve it from the 
throbbings of care." So he mounted his horse, and went to find the sage. At 
the moment he arrived at the hill a company of boys were playing together. 
One of them cried out with a loud voice, " The vazfr is running everywhere bi 
search of an interpreter, and all avails him nothing ; now the interpretation of 
the dream is with me, and the truth of it is clear to me." When these words 
reached the ears of the vazfr he drew in the reins, and calling the boy to him 
asked him, " What is thy name ? " He replied, " Buzurjmihr." The vafr said, 
" All the sages and interpreters have failed in loosing the knot of this difficulty 
how dost thou, so young in years, pretend to be able to do it." He replied, 
" All the world is not given to every one." The vazfr said, " If thou speakest 
truth, explain." Said the boy, " Take me to the monarch, that I may there un- 
loose the knot of this difficulty." The vazfr said, " If thou shouldst fail, what 
then will come of it ?" The boy replied, " I will give up my own blood to the 
king, that they may slay me instead of thee." The vazfr took the boy with him, 
returned, and told the whole matter to the king and produced the boy in his 
presence. The king was very angry, and said, " All the wise men and dream- 
interpreters of the court were unable to satisfy me, and thou bringest me a 
child, and expectest that he shall loose the knot of the difficulty." The vazfr 
bowed his head. And Buzurjmihr said, "Look not upon his youth, but see 
whether he is able to expound the mystery or not." The king then said, 
" Speak." He replied, " I cannot speak in this multitude." So those who were 
present retired, and the monarch and the youth were left alone. Then said the 
youth, " A stranger has found entrance into thy seraglio, and is dishonouring 
thee, along with a girl who is one of thy concubines." The king was much 
moved at this interpretation, and looked from one of the wise men to another, 
and at length said to the boy, " This is a serious matter thou hast asserted ; 
how shall this matter be proceeded in, and in what way fully known ?" The 
boy replied, " Command that every beautiful woman in thy seraglio pass before 
thee unveiled, that the truth of this matter may be made apparent." The king 
ordered them to pass before him as the boy had said, and considered the face 
of each one attentively. Among them came a young girl extremely beautiful, 
whom the king much regarded. When she came opposite to him, a shuddering 
as of palsy, fell upon her, and she shook from head to foot, so that she was 
hardly able to stand. The king called her to him, and threatening her greatly, 

Ah Khwajah and the Merchant of Baghdad. 599 

bade her speak the truth. She confessed that she loved a handsome slave and 
had privately introduced him into the seraglio. The king ordered them both to 
be impaled, and turning to the rewarding of Buzurjmihr, he made him the 
object of his special bounty 

This story has been imported into the u History of the Seven Wise Masters 
of Rome," the European form of the Book of Sindibdd, where the prince dis- 
covers to his father the paramour of his step-mother, the empress, in the person 
of a young man disguised as one of her maid-servants, and its presence in the 
work is quite inconsistent with the lady's violent lust after the young prince. 
There is a simitar tale in the Hebrew version, " Mishle* Sandabar,' 1 but the 
disguised youth is not detected. Vatsyayana, in his " K4ma Sutra" (or Aphor- 
isms of Love), speaks of it as a common practice in India thus to smuggle men 
into the women's apartments in female attire. In the Introduction to the 
11 Kathd Sarit Sdgara,'' Vararuchi relates how King Yogananda saw his queen 
leaning out of a window and asking questions of a Brdhman guest that was look- 
ing up. That trivial circumstance threw the king into a passion, and he gave 
orders that the Brdhman should be put to death ; for jealousy interferes with 
discernment. Then as that Brdhman was being led off to the place of execution 
in order that he should be put to death, a fish in the market laughed aloud, 
though it was dead. The king hearing it immediately prohibited for the pre- 
sent the execution of the Brdhman, and asked Vararuchi the reason why the 
fish laughed. He desired time to think over the matter and learned from the 
conversation of a rdkshasf with her children that the fish said to himself, "All 
the king's wives are dissolute, for in every part of his harem there are men 
dressed up as women, and nevertheless while those escape, an innocent Brdh- 
man is to be put to death "; and this tickled the fish so that he laughed. Mr. 
Tawney says that Dr. Liebrecht, in " Orient und Occident," vol. i. p. 341, com- 
pares this story with one in the old French romance of Merlin. There Merlin 
laughs because the wife of Julius Caesar had twelve young men disguised 
as ladies-in-waiting. Benfey, in a note on Liebrecht's article, compares with 
the story of Merlin one by the Countess d'Aulnois, No. 36 of Basile's " Penta- 
merone," Straparola, iv. i, and a story in the "Suka Saptatf." In this some 
cooked fish laugh so that the whole town hears them ; the reason being the 
same as in the above story and in that of Merlin. In a Kashmfrf version, 
which has several other incidents and bears a close resemblance to No. 4 of 
M. Legrand's "Recueil de Contes Populaires Grecs, 1 ' to the story of "The 
Clever Girl" in Professor T. F. Crane's " Italian Popular Tales," and to a fable 
in the Talmud, the king requires his vazfr to inform him within six months why 
the fish laughed in presence of the queen. The vazfr sends his son abroad until 
the king's anger had somewhat cooled for himself he expects nothing but 
death. The vazfr's son learns from the clever daughter of a farmer that the 
laughing of the fish indicates that there is a man in the palace unknown to the 
king. He hastens home and tells his father the secret, who at once communi- 
cates it to the king. All the female attendants in the palace are called together 

6oo Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

and ordered to jump across the mouth of a pit which he has caused to be dug : 
the man would betray his sex in the trial. Only one person succeeded 
and he was found to be a man. 1 Thus was the queen satisfied, and the 
faithful old vazir saved, and his son, of course, married the farmer's clever 


How, in the name of all that is wonderful how has it happened that this ever- 
delightful tale is not found in any text of The Nights ? And how could it be 
supposed for a moment that Galland was capable of conceiving such a tale 
redolent, as it is, of the East and of Fairyland ? Not that Fairyland where 
" True Thomas," otherwise ycleped Thomas the Rymer, otherwise Thomas of 
Erceldoune, passed several years in the bewitching society of the Fairy Queen, 
years which appeared to him as only so many moments : but Eastern Fairy- 
land, with all its enchanting scenes ; where priceless gems are as plentiful as 
"autumnal leaves which strow the brooks in Vallombrosa " ; where, in the royal 
banqueting-hall, illuminated with hundreds of wax candles, in candelabra of the 
finest amber and the purest crystal, are bands of charming damsels, fairest of 
form and feature, who play on sweet-toned instruments which discourse heart- 
ravishing strains of melody ; meanwhile the beauteous Peri Bnu is seated on 
a throne adorned with diamonds and rubies and emeralds, and pearls and other 
gems, and by her side is the thrice-happy Prince Ahmad, who feels himself amply 
indemnified for the loss of his fair cousin Princess Nur-en-Nihar. Auspicious 
was that day when he shot the arrow which the enamoured Pen Banii caused 
to be wafted through the air much farther than arm of flesh could ever send the 
feathered messenger ! And when the Prince feels a natural longing to visit his 
father in the land of mortals from time to time, behold the splendid cavalcade 
issue from the portals of the fairy palace the gallant jinn-born cavaliers, 
mounted on superb steeds with gorgeous housings, who accompany him to his 
father's capital ! But alas ! the brightest sky is sooner or later overcast 
human felicity is etc., etc. The old king's mind is poisoned against his noble 
son by the whisperings of a malignant and envious minister a snake in the 
grass a fly in the ointment of Prince Ahmad's beatitude ! And to think of the 
old witch gaining access to the fairy palace it was nothing less than an 

1 The Rabbins relate that among the Queen of Sheba's tests of Solomon's sagacity 
she brought before him a number of boys and girls apparelled all alike, and desired him 
to distinguish those of one sex from those of the other, as they stood in his presence. 
Solomon caused a large basin of water to be fetched in, and ordered them all to wash 
their hands. By this expedient he discovered the boys from the girls, since the former 
washed merely their hands, while the latter washed also their arms. 

Prince Ahmad and the Peri Banu. 60 1 

atrocity ! And the tasks which she induces the king to set Prince Ahmad to 
perform but they are all accomplished for him by his fairy bride. The only 
thing to regret the fatal blemish in the tale is the slaughter of the old king. 
Shabbar did right well to dash into the smallest pieces the wicked vazfr and the 
foul witch and all who aided and abetted them, but " to kill a king ! "i and a 
well-meaning if soft-headed king, who was, like many better men, led astray 
by evil counsellors ! 

Having thus blown off the steam I mean to say, having thus ventilated the 
enthusiasm engendered by again reading the tale of Prince Ahmad and the 
Pert Bind, I am now in a fitter frame of mind for the business of examining 
some versions and variants of it ; for though the tale has not yet been found 
in Arabic, it is known from the banks of Ganga to the snow-clad hills and vales 
of Iceland that strange land whose heart is full of the fiercest fires. This tale, 
like that of Zayn al-Asndm, comprises two distinct stories, which have no 
necessary connection, to wit, (i) the adventures of the Three Princes, each in 
quest of the rarest treasure, wherewith to win the beautiful Princess Niir-en- 
Nihdr ; and (2) the subsequent history of the third Prince and the Peri Binu. 
The oldest known form of the story concludes with the recovery of the lady 
not from death's door, but from a giant who had carried her off, and the rival 
claims of the heroes to the hand of the lady are left undecided : certainly a 
most unsatisfactory ending, though it must be confessed the case was, as the 
priest found that of Paddy and the stolen pullet, somewhat " abstruse." In the 
M Vetalapanchavinsati,'' or Twenty-five Tales of a Vampyre (concerning which 
collection see Appendix to the preceding volumes, p. 320), the fifth recital is to 
this purpose : 

There was a Brahman in Ajjayini (Oojein) whose name was Harisvamin ; 
he had a son named Devasvamin and a daughter far famed for her wondrous 
beauty and rightly called Somaprabha (Moonlight). When the maiden had 
attained marriageable age, she declared to her parents that she was only to be 
married to a man who possessed heroism, or knowledge, or magic power. It 
happened soon after this that Harisvamin was sent by the king on state business 
to the Dekkan, and while there a young Brahman, who had heard the report 
of Somaprabha's beauty, came to him as a suitor for the hand of his daughter. 
Harisvamin informed him of the qualifications which her husband must 
possess, and the Brahman answered that he was endowed with magic power, 
and having shown this to the father's satisfaction, he promised to give him his 
daughter on the seventh day from that time. In like manner, at home, the 
son and the wife of Harisvamin had, unknown to each other, promised Soma- 
prabha to a young man who was skilled in the use of missile weapons and was 
very brave, and to a youth who possessed knowledge of the past, the present, 
and the future ; and the marriage was also fixed to take place on the seventh 
day. When Harisvamin returned home he at once told his wife and son of the 
contract he had entered into with the young Brahman, and they in their turn 

602 Appendix : Variants and Analogues. 

acquainted him of their separate engagements, and all were much perplexed 
what course to adopt in the circumstances. 

On the seventh day the three suitors arrived, but Somaprabha was found to 
have disappeared in some inexplicable manner. The father then appealed to 
the man of knowledge, saying, " Tell me where my daughter is gone ? " He 
replied, "She has been carried off by a rakshasa to his habitation in the 
Vindhya forest." Then quoth the man of magic power, " Be of good cheer, for 
I will take you in a moment where the possessor of knowledge says she is." 
And forthwith he prepared a magic chariot that could fly through the air, pro- 
vided all sorts of weapons, and made Harisvamin, the man of knowledge, and 
the brave man enter it along with himself, and in a moment carried them to the 
dwelling of the rakshasa. Then followed a wonderful fight between the brave 
man and the rakshasa, and in a short time the hero cut off his head, after which 
they took Somaprabha into the chariot and quickly returned to Harisvamin's 
house. And now arose a great dispute between the three suitors. Said the 
man of knowledge, " If I had not known where the maiden was, how could she 
have been discovered ? " The man of magic argued, " If I had not made this 
chariot that can fly through the air, how could you all have come and returned 
in a moment?" Then the brave man said, " If I had not slain the rakshasa, 
how could the maiden have been rescued ? '' While they were thus wrangling 
Harisvamin remained silent, perplexed in mind. The Vampyre, having told 
this story to the King, demanded to know to whom the maiden should have 
been given. The King replied, u She ought to have been given to the brave 
man ; for he won her by the might of his arm and at the risk of his life, 
slaying that rakshasa in combat. But the man of knowledge and the man of 
magic, power were appointed by the Creator to serve as his instruments. The 
perplexed Harisvamin would have been glad, no doubt, could he have had such 
a logical solution of the question as this of the sagacious King Trivikramasena 
such was his six-syllabled name. 

The Hindi version (" Baytal Pachisi ") corresponds with the Sanskrit, but in 
the Tamil version the father, after hearing from each of the three suitors an 
account of his accomplishments, promises to give his daughter to '* one of them." 
Meanwhile a giant comes and carries off the damsel. There is no difference 
in the rest of the story. 

In the Persian Parrot-Book (" Tuti N4ma ") where the tale is also found 1 
it is the 34th recital of the loquacious bird in the India Office MS. No. 2573, 
the 6th in B. Gerrans' partial translation, 1792, and the 22nd in Ka'deri's 

1 Dr. W. Grimm, in the notes to his "Kinder und Hausmarchen," referring to the 
German form of the story (which we shall come to by-and-by), says, ' The Parrot^ 
which is the fourth story in the Persian Touti Nameh, bears some resemblance to 
this" the Parrot is the reciter of all the stories in the collection, not the title of this 
particular tale. 

Prince Ahmad and the Peri Banu. 60 J 

abridgment the first suitor says that his art is to discover anything lost and 
to predict future events ; the second can make a horse of wood which would 
fly through the air ; and the third was an unerring archer. 

In the Persian " Sindibad Nama," a princess, while amusing herself in a 
garden with her maidens, is carried away by a demon to his cave in the 
mountains. The king proclaims that he will give his daughter in marriage to 
whoever should bring her back. Four brothers offer themselves for the under- 
taking : one is a guide who has travelled over the world ; the second is a 
daring robber, who would take the prey even from the lion's mouth ; the 
third is a brave warrior ; and the fourth is a skilful physician. The guide 
leads the three others to the demon's cave ; the robber steals the damsel 
while the demon is absent ; the physician, finding her at death's door, restores 
her to perfect health ; while the warrior puts to flight a host of demons who 
sallied out of the cave. 

The Sanskrit story has undergone a curious transformation among the 
Kalmuks. In the gth Relation of Siddhf Kur (a Mongolian version of the 
Vampyre Tales) six youths are companions : an astrologer, a smith, a doctor, 
a mechanic, a painter, and a rich man's son. At the mouth of a great river 
each plants a tree of life and separates, taking different roads, having agreed 
to meet again at the same spot, when if the tree of any of them is found to be 
withered it will be a token that he is dead. The rich man's son marries a 
beautiful girl, who is taken from him by the Khan, and the youth is at the 
same time put to death by the Khan's soldiers and buried under a great rock. 
When the four other young men meet at the time and place appointed they 
find the tree of the rich youth withered. Thereupon the astrologer by his art 
discovers where the youth is buried ; the smith breaks the rock asunder ; the 
physician restores the youth to life, and he tells them how the Khan had 
robbed him of his wife and killed him. The mechanic then constructs a flying 
chariot in the form of Garuda the bird of Vishnu ; the counterpart of the 
Arabian rukh which the painter decorates, and when it is finished the rich 
youth enters it and is swiftly borne through the air to the roof of the Khan's 
dwelling, where he alights. The Khan, supposing the machine to be a real 
Garuda, sends the rich youth's own wife to the roof with some food for it. 
Could anything have been more fortunate? The youth takes her into the 
wooden Garuda and they quickly arrive at the place where his companions 
waited for his return. When they beheld the marvellous beauty of the lady 
the five skilful men instantly fell in love with her, and began to quarrel 
among themselves, each claiming the lady as his by right, and drawing their 
knives they fought and slew one another. So the rich youth was left in un- 
disputed possession of his beautiful bride. 

Coming back to Europe we find the primitive form of the story partly 
preserved in a Greek popular version given in Hahn's collection: Three 

604 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

young men are in love with the same girl, and agree to go away and meet 
again at a given time, when he who shall have learned the best craft shall 
marry the girl. They meet after three years' absence, One has become a 
famous astronomer ; the second is so skilful a physician that he can raise the 
dead ; and the third can run faster than the wind. The astronomer looks at 
the girl's star and knows from its trembling that she is on the point of death. 
The physician prepares a medicine, which the third runs off with at the top 
of his speed, and pours it down the girl's throat just in time to save her life 
though, for the matter of that, she might as well have died, since the second 
suitor was able to resuscitate the dead ! 

But the German tale of the Four Clever Brothers, divested of the pre- 
liminary incidents which have been brought into it from different folk-tales, 
more nearly approaches the form of the original, as we may term the Sanskrit 
story for convenience' sake : A poor man sends his four sons into the world, 
each to learn some craft by which he might gain his own livelihood. Alter 
travelling together for some time they came to a place where four roads branched 
off and there they separated, each going along one of the roads, having agreed 
to meet at the same spot that day four years. One learns to be an excellent 
astronomer and, on quitting, his master gives him a telescope, 1 saying, " With 

1 To Sir Richard Burton's interesting note on the antiquity of the lens and its applied 
use to the telescope and microscope may be added a passage or two from Sir William 
Drummond's " Origines ; or, Remarks on the Origin of several Empires, States, and 
Cities," 1825, vol. ii. p. 246-250. This writer appears to think that telescopes were not 
unknown to the ancients and adduces plausible evidence in support of his opinion. 
** Moschopalus," he says, "an ancient grammarian, mentions four instruments with 
which the astronomers of antiquity were accustomed to observe the stars the catoptron^ 
fazdioptron, the eisoptron, and the enoptron." He supposes the catoptron to have been 
the same with the astrolabe. "The dioptron seems to have been so named from a tube 
through which the observer looked. Were the other two instruments named from 
objects being reflected in a mirror placed within them? Aristotle says that the 
Greeks employed mirrors when they surveyed the celestial appearances. May we not 
conclude from this circumstance that astronomers were not always satisfied with looking 
through empty tubes ?" He thinks the ancients were acquainted with lenses and has 
collected passages from various writers which corroborate his opinion, besides referring 
to the numerous uses to which glass was applied in the most remote ages. He goes on 
to say : 

'* Some of the observations of the ancients must appear very extraordinary, if magni- 
fying glasses had never been known among them. The boldness with which the 
Pythagoreans asserted that the surface of the moon was diversified by mountains and 
valleys can hardly be accounted for, unless Pythagoras had been convinced of the fact by 
the help of telescopes, which might have existed in the observatories of Egypt and 
Chaldea before those countries were conquered and laid waste by the Persians. Pliny 
(L. Ii) says that 1600 stars had been counted in the 72 constellations, and by this 
expression I can only understand him to mean the 72 dodecans into which the Egyptians 
and Chaldeans divided the zodiac. Now this number of stars could never have been 
counted in the zodiac without the assistance of glasses. Ptolemy reckoned a much less 
number for the whole heavens. The missionaries found many more stars marked in the 
Chinese charts of the heavens than formerly existed in those which were in use in Europe. 
Suidas, at the word {JaXos (glass), indicates, in explaining a passage in Aristophanes, 
that burning mirrors were occasionally made of glass. Now how can we suppose burn- 
ing mirrors to have been made of glass without supposing the magnifying powers of 
glass to have been known ? The Greeks, as Plutarch affirms, employed metallic mirrors, 

Prince Ahmad and the Peri Banu. 605 

this thou canst see whatever takes place either on earth or in heaven, and 
nothing can remain concealed from thee." Another becomes a most expert 
thief. The third learns to be a sharpshooter and gets from his master a gun 
which would never fail him : whatever he aimed at he was sure to hit. And 
the youngest becomes a very clever tailor and is presented by his master with 
a needle, which could sew anything together, hard or soft. At the end of the 
four years they met according to agreement, and returning together to their 
father's house, they satisfied the old man with a display of their abilities. Socn 
after this the king's daughter was carried off by a dragon, and the king pro- 
claimed that whoever brought her back should have her. to wife. This the four 
clever brothers thought was a fine chance for them, and they resolved to liberate 
the king's daughter. The astronomer looked through his telescope and saw 
the princess far away on a rock fn the sea and the dragon watching beside her. 
Then they went and got a ship from the king, and sailed over the sea till they 
came to the rock, where the princess was sitting and the dragon was asleep 
with his head in her lap. The hunter feared to shoot lest he should kill the 
princess. Then the thief crept up the rock and stole her from under the dragon 
so cleverly that the monster did not awake. Full of joy, they hurried off with 
her and sailed away. But presently the dragon awoke and missing the princess 
flew after them through the air. Just as he was hovering above the ship to 
swoop down upon it, the hunter shot him through the heart and he tumbled 
down dead, but falling on the vessel his carcase smashed it into pieces. They 

either plane, or convex, or concave, according to the use for which they were intended. 
If they could make burning mirrors of glass, they could have given any of these forms to 
glass. How then could they have avoided observing that two glasses, one convex and 
the other concave, placed at a certain distance from each other, magnified objects seen 
through them ? Numerous experiments must have been made with concave and convex 
glasses before burning mirrors made of glass could have been employed. If astronomers 
never knew the magnifying powers of glass, and never placed lenses in the tubes of the 
dioptrons, what does Strata (L. 3, c. 138) mean when he says : Vapours produce the 
same effects as the tubes in magnifying objects of vision by refraction? ' ' 

Mr. W. F. Thompson, in bis translation of the Ahlak-i Jalaly," from the Persian 
of Fakir Jani Muhammad (i5th century), has the following note on the Jam-i Jamshid 
and other magical mirrors : *' Jamshid, the fourth of the Kaianian dynasty, the Soloman 
of the Persians. His cup was said to mirror the world, so that he could observe all 
that was passing elsewhere a fiction of his own for state purposes, apparently, backed 
by the use of artificial mirrors. Nizainf tells that Alexander invented the steel mirror, 
by which he means, of course, that improved reflectors were used for telescopy in the 
days of Archimedes, but not early enough to have assisted Jamshid, who belongs to 
the fabulous and unchronicled age. In the romance of Bcyjan and Manila, in the 
"Shah Nama," this mirror is used by the great Khosru for the purpose of discovering 
the place of the hero's imprisonment : 

" The mirror in his hand revolving shook. 
And earth's whole suiface glimmered in his look ; 
Nor less the secrets of the starry sphere, 
The what, the when, the bow depicted clear, 
From orbs celestial to the blade of grass, 
All nature floated in the magic glass." 

Appendix : Variants and Analogues* 

laid hold of two planks and drifted about till the tailor with his wonderful 
needle sewed the planks together, and then they collected the fragments of the 
ship which the tailor also sewed together so skilfully that their ship was again sea- 
worthy, and they soon got home in safety. The king was right glad to see his 
daughter and told the four brothers they must settle among themselves which 
of them should have her to wife. Upon this they began to wrangle with one 
another. The astronomer said, " If I had not seen the princess, all your arts 
would have been useless, so she is mine." The thief claimed her, because he 
had rescued her from the dragon ; the hunter, because he had shot the mon- 
ster ; and the tailor, because he had sewn the ship together and saved them all 
from drowning. Then the king decreed: "Each of you has an equal right, 
and as all of you cannot have her, none of you shall ; but I will give to each as 
a reward half a kingdom," with which the four clever brothers were well 

The story has assumed a droll form among the Albanians, in which no 
fewer than seven remarkably endowed youths play their parts in rescuing 
a king's daughter from the Devil, who had stolen her out of the palace. One 
of the heroes could hear far off; the second could make the earth open ; the 
third could steal from any one without his knowing it ; the fourth could throw 
an object to the end of the world ; the fifth could erect an impregnable tower ; 
the sixth could bring down anything however high it might be in the air ; 
and the seventh could catch whatever fell from any height. So they set off 
together, and after travelling a long way, the first lays his ear to the ground. 
" I hear him," he says. Then the second causes the earth to open, and 
down they go, and find the Devil sound asleep, snoring^like thunder, with 
the princess clasped to his breast. The third youth steals her without waking 
the fiend. Then the fourth takes off the Devil's shoes and flings them to the end 
of the world, and off they all go with the princess. The Devil wakes and goes 
after them, but first he must find his shoes though what need he could have 
for shoes it is not easy to say ; but mayhap the Devil of the Albanians is 
minus horns, hoof, and tail ! This gives the fifth hero time to erect hrs 
impregnable tower before the fiend returns from the end of the world. When 
he comes to the tower he finds all his skill is naught, so he has recourse to 
artifice, which indeed has always been .his forte. He begs piteously to be 
allowed one last look of his beloved princess. They can't refuse him so slight 
a favour, and make a tiny hole in the tower wall, but, tiny as it is, the Devil 
is able to pull the princess through it and instantly mounts on high with her. 
Now is the marksman's opportunity : he shoots at the fiend and down he 
comes, " like a hundred of bricks " (as we don't say in the classics), at the 
same time letting go the princess, who is cleverly caught by the seventh hero, 
and is none the worse for her aerial journey. The princess chooses the seventh 
for her husband, as he is the youngest and best looking, but her father the 
king rewards his companions handsomely and all are satisfied. 

Prince Ahmad and the Peri Banu. 637 

The charming history of Prince Ahmad and his fairy bride if " conspicuous 
from Us absence " in all these versions, but it re-appears in the Italian 
Collection of Nerucci : " Novelle Popolari Montalesi," No. xl, p. 335, with 
some variations from Galland's story : 

A certain king had three daughters, and a neighbouring king had three 
sons, who were much devoted to the chase. They arrived at the city of the first 
king, and all fell in love with his daughter 1 and wanted to marry her. Her 
father said it was impossible to content them all, but if one of them would ask 
her, and if he pleased her, he would not oppose the marriage. They could not 
agree which it was to be, and her father proposed that they should all travel, 
and the one who at the end of six months brought the most beautiful and 
wonderful present should marry her. They set out in different directions and 
at the end of six months they meet by appointment at a certain inn. The eldest 
brings a magic carpet on which he is wafted whithersoever hevill. (It goes a 
hundred miles in a day.) The second brings a telescope which shows whatever 
is happening a hundred miles away. The youngest brings three stones of a 
grape, one of which put into the mouth of a person who is dying restores him to 
life. They at once test the telescope by wishing to see the princess, and they 
find her dying at the last gasp indeed. By means of the carpet they reach the 
palace in time to save her life with one of the grape-stones. Each claims the 
victory. Her father, almost at his wits' end to decide the question, decrees that 
they shall shoot with the crossbow, and he who shoots farthest shall win the 
princess. The second brother shoots farther than the first ; but the youngest 
shoots so far that they cannot find where his arrow has fallen. He persists in 
the search and falls down a deep hole, from the bottom of which he can scarcely 
see a speck of the sky. There an ogre (magd) appears to him and also a bevy 
of young fairy maidens of extreme beauty. They lead him to a marvellous 
palace, give him refreshments and provide him with a room and a bed, where every 
night one of the fairies bears him company. He spends his days in pleasure until 
the king's daughter is almost forgotten. At last he begins to think he ought to 
learn what has become of his brothers, his father, and the lady. The chief fairy 
however, tries to dissuade him, warning him that evil will befall him if he return 
to his brothers. He persists, and she tells him that the princess is given to his 
eldest brother, who reigns in his father-in-law's stead, the latter having died, and 
that his own father is also dead; and she warns him again not to go. But he goes. 
His eldest brother says that he thought he was dead ' in that hole." The hero 
replies that, on the contrary, he fares so well with a bevy of young and beautiful 
fairies that he does not even envy him, and would not change places with him 
for all the treasures in the world. His brother, devoured by rage, demands that 
the hero bring him within eight days a pavilion of silk which will lodge three 
hundred soldiers, otherwise he will destroy his palace of delights. The hero, 

1 We have been told this king had tkrte daughters. 

608 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

affrighted, returns to the fairies and relates his brother's threats. The chief fairy 
says, " Didn't I tell you so ? You deserve that I should leave you to your fate ; 
but, out of pity for your youth, I will hejp you.'' And he returns to his brother 
within eight days with the required pavilion. But his brother is not satisfied : 
he demands another silk pavilion for 600 soldiers, else he will lay waste 
the abode of the fairies. This pavilion he also receives from the fairies, and it 
was much finer and richer than the first. His brother's demands rise when he 
sees that the hero does not find any difficulty in satisfying him. He now 
commands that a column of iron 12 cubits (braccid) high be erected in the midst 
of a piazza. The chief of the fairies also complies with this requirement. The 
column is ready in a moment, and as the hero cannot carry it himself, she gives 
it to the guardian ogre, who carries it upon his shoulders, and presents himself, 
along with the hero, before the eldest brother. As soon as the latter comes to 
see the column set in the piazza the ogre knocks him down and reduces him to 
pulp (cofaccinO) lit., a cake), and the hero marries his brother's widow and 
becomes king in his stead. 

Almost suspiciously like the story in Galland in many of the details is an 
Icelandic version in Powell and Magnusson's collection, yet I cannot conceive 
how the peasantry of that country could have got it out of " Les Mille et une 
Nuits." There are two ways by which the story might have reached them 
independently of Galland's work : the Arabs and Persians traded extensively 
in former times with Scandinavia, through Russia, and this as well as other 
Norse tales of undoubtedly Eastern extraction may have been communicated 
by the same channel * ; or the Norsemen may have taken it back with them 
from the South of Europe. But however this may be, the Icelandic version 
is so quaint in its diction, has such a fresh aroma about it, and such novel 
particulars, that I feel justified in giving it here in full : 

It is said that once, in the days of old, there was a good and wealthy king 
who ruled over a great and powerful realm ; but neither his name nor that of 
his kingdom is given, nor the latter's whereabouts in the world. He had a 
queen, and by her three sons, who were all fine youths and hopeful, and the 
king loved them well. The king had taken, too, a king's daughter from a 
neighbouring kingdom, to foster her, and she was brought up with his sons. 
She was of the same age as they, and the most beautiful and accomplished lady 
that had ever been seen in those days, and the king loved her in no way less 
than his own sons. When the princess was of age, all the king's sons fell in 

1 See in " Blackwood's Magazine," vol. iv., 1818, 1819, a translation, from the 
Danish of J. L. Ramussen, of "An Historical and Geographical Essay on the trade and 
commerce of the Arabians and Persians with Russia and Scandinavia during the Middle 
Ages." But learned Icelanders, while England was still semi-civilized, frequently 
made very long journeys into foreign lands : after performing the pilgrimage to Rome, 
they went to Syria, and some penetrated into Central Asia. 

Prince -Ahmad and the Peri Banu. 609 

love with her, and things even went so far that they all of them engaged her at 
once, each in his own name. Their father, being the princess's foster-father, 
had the right of bestowing her in marriage, as her own father was dead. But 
as he was fond of all his sons equally the answer he gave them was, that he 
left it to the lady's own choice to take for a husband whichever of the brothers 
she loved the most. On a certain day he had the princess called up to him 
and declared his will to her, telling her that she might choose for a husband 
whichever she liked best of his sons. The princess answered, '* Bound I air. 
in duty to obey'your words. But as to this choice of one of your sons to be my 
husband I am in the greatest perplexity ; for I must confess they are all equally 
dear to me, and I cannot choose one before the other." When the king heard 
this answer of the princess he found himself in a new embarrassment, and 
thought a long while what he could do that should be equally agreeable to all 
parties, and at last hit upon the following decision of the matter : that all his 
sons should after a year's travel return each with a precious thing, and that he 
who had the finest thing should be the princess's husband. This decision the 
king's sons found to be a just one and they agreed to meet after one year at a 
certain castle in the country, whence they should go all together, to the town, 
in order to lay their gifts before the princess. And now their departure from 
the country was arranged as well as could be. 

First the talc tells of the eldest, that he went from one land to another, and 
from one city to another, in search of a precious thing, but found nowhere any- 
thing that at all suited his ideas. At last the news came to his ears that there 
was a princess who had so fine a spy-glass that nothing so marvellous had ever 
been seen or heard of before. In it one could see all over the world, every 
place, every city, every man, and every living being that moved on the face of 
the earth, and what every living thing in the world was doing. Now the prince 
thought that surely there could be no more precious thing at all likely to turn 
up for him than this telescope ; he therefore went to the princess, in order to 
buy the spy-glass if possible. But by no means could he prevail upon the 
king's daughter to part with her spy-glass, till he had told her his whole story 
and why he wanted it, and used all his powers of entreaty. As might be expected, 
he paid for it well . Having got it he returned home, glad at his luck, and 
hoping to wed the king's daughter. 

The story next turns to the second son. He had to struggle with the same 
difficulties as his elder brother. He travelled for a long while over the wide 
world without finding anything at all suitable, and thus for a time he saw no 
chance of his wishes being fulfilled. Once he came into a very well-peopled 
city ; and went about in search of precious things among the merchants, but 
neither did he find nor even see what he wanted. He heard that there lived a 
short way from the town a dwarf, the cleverest maker of curious and cunning 
things. He therefore resolved to go to the dwarf in order to try whether he 
could be persuaded to make him any costly thing. The dwarf said that he had 
ceased to make things of that sort now and he must beg to be excused from 

6 1 o Appendix : Variants and A nalogues. 

making anything of the kind for the prince. But he said that he had a piece of 
cloth, made in his younger days, with which, however, he was very unwilling to 
part. The king's son asked the nature and use of the cloth. The dwarf 
answered, " On this cloth one can go all over the world, as well through the air 
as on the water. Runes are on it, which must be understood by him who uses 
it." Now the prince saw that a more precious thing than this could scarcely 
be found, and therefore asked the dwarf by all means to let him have the cloth. 
And although the dwarf would not at first part with his cloth at all, yet at last, 
hearing what would happen if the king's son did not get it, he sold it to him at 
a mighty high price. The prince was truly glad to have got the cloth, for it was 
not only a cloth of great value, but also the greatest of treasures in other re- 
spects, having gold-seams and jewel-embroidery. After this he returned home, 
hoping to get the best of his brothers in the contest for the damsel. 

The youngest prince left home last of all the three brethren. 1 First he 
travelled from one village to another in his own country, and went about 
asking for precious things of every merchant he met on his way, as also on all 
sides where there was the slightest hope of his getting what he wanted. But all 
his endeavours were in vain, and the greater part of the year was spent in 
fruitless search till at last he waxed sad in mind at his lot. At this time he 
came into a well-peopled city, whereto people where gathered from all parts of 
the world. He went from one merchant to another till at last he came to one 
who sold apples. 2 This merchant said he had an apple that was of so strange 
a nature that if it was put into the arm-hole of a dying man he would at once 
return to life. He declared that it was the property of his family and had 
always been used in the family as a medicine. As soon as the king's son heard 
this he would by all means have the apple, deeming that he would never be 
able to find a thing more acceptable to the king's daughter than this. He 
therefore asked the merchant to sell him the apple and told him all the story 
of his search, and that his earthly welfare was based upon his being in no 
way inferior to his brethren in his choice of precious things for the princess. 
The merchant felt pity for the prince when he had told him his story, so much 
so that he sold him the apple, and the prince returned home, glad and 
comforted at his happy luck. 

Now nothing more is related of the three brothers till they met together at 
the place before appointed. When they were all together each related the 
striking points in his travelling. All being here, the eldest brother thought 
that he would be the first to see the princess and find out how she was ; and 
therefore he took forth his spy-glass and turned it towards the city. But what 
saw he ? The beloved princess lying in her bed, in the very jaws of death ! 

1 This, of course, is absurd, as each was equally interested in the business; but it 
seems to indicate a vague reminiscence of the adventures of the Princes in the story of 
The Envious Sisters. 

'* There is a naivett about this that is peculiarly refreshing. 

Prince Ahmad and the Peri Banu. 61 1 

Hie king, his father, and all the highest nobles of the court were standing 
pound the bed in the blackness of sorrow, sad in their minds, and ready to 
receive the last sigh of the fair princess. When the prince saw this lamentable 
ight he was grieved beyond measure. He told his brothers what he had seen 
and they were no less struck with sorrow than himself. They began bewailing 
loudly, saying that they would give all they had never to have undertaken 
this journey, for then at least they would have been able to perform the last 
offices for the fair princess. But in the midst of these bewailings the second 
brother bethought him of his cloth, and remembered that he could get to the 
town on it in a moment. He told this to his brothers and they were glad at 
ftuch good and unexpected news. Now the cloth was unfolded and they all 
stepped on to it, and in one moment it was high in the air and in the next 
Inside the town. When they were there they made all haste to reach the room 
of the princess, where everybody wore an air of deep sadness. They were 
old that the princess's every breath was her last. Then the youngest brother 
vemembered his wonderful apple, and thought that it would never be more 
wanted to show its healing power than now. He therefore went straight into 
the bed-room of the princess and placed the apple under her right arm. And at 
the same moment it was as if a new breath of life flushed through the whole 
body of the princess ; her eyes opened, and after a little while she began to 
speak to the folk around her. This and the return of the king's sons caused 
great joy at the court of the king. 

Now some time went by until the princess was fully recovered. Then a 
large meeting was called together, at which the brothers were bidden to show 
their treasures. First the eldest made his appearance, and showing his spy- 
glass told what a wonderful thing it was, and also how it was due to this glass 
that the life of the fair princess had ever been saved, as he had seen through 
it how matters stood in the town. He therefore did not doubt for a moment 
that his gift was the one which would secure him the fair princess. 

Next stepped forward the second brother with the cloth. Having described 
its powers, he said, " I am of opinion that my brother's having seen the princess 
first would have proved of little avail had I not had the cloth, for thereupon 
we came so quickly to the place to save the princess ; and I must declare that 
to my mind, the cloth is the chief cause of the king's daughter's recovery." 

Next stepped forward the youngest prince and said, as he laid the apple 
before the people, " Little would the glass and the cloth have availed to save 
the princess's life had I not had the apple. What could we brothers have 
profited in being only witnesses of the beloved damsel's death ? What would 
this have done, but awaken our grief and regret ? It is due alone to the apple 
that the princess is yet alive ; wherefore I find myself the most deserving 
of her." 

Then a long discussion arose in the meeting, and the decision at last came 
cot, that all the three things had worked equally towards the princess's recovery, 
at might be seen from the fact that if one had been wanting the others would 

612 Appendix : Variants and Analogues. 

have been worthless. It was therefore declared that, as all gifts had equal 
claim to the prize, no one could decide to whom the princess should belong. 

After this the king planned another contrivance in order to come to some 
end of the matter. He soon should try their skill in shooting, and he who 
proved to be the ablest shooter of them should have the princess. So a mark 
was raised and the eldest brother stepped forward with his bow and quiver. 
He shot, and no great distance from the mark fell his arrow. After that stepped 
forward the second brother, and his arrow well-nigh reached the mark. Last 
of all stepped forward the third and youngest brother, and his arrow seemed to 
go farther than the others, but in spite of continued search for many days it 
could not be found. The king decided in this matter that his second son 
should marry the princess. They were married accordingly, and as the king, 
the father of the princess, was dead, his daughter now succeeded him. and her 
husband became king over his wife's inheritance. They are now out this tale, 
as is also the eldest brother, who settled in life abroad. 

The youngest brother stayed at home with his father, highly displeased at 
the decision the latter had given concerning the marriage of the princess. He 
was wont to wander about every day where he fancied his arrow had fallen, 
and at last he found it fixed in an oak in the forest, and saw that it had by far 
outstripped the mark. He now called together witnesses to the place where the 
arrow was, with the intention of bringing about some justice in his case. But 
of this there was no chance, for the king said he could by no means alter his 
decision. At this the king's son was so grieved that he went well-nigh out ol 
his wits. One day he busked for a journey, with the full intention of never 
again setting foot in his country. He took with him all he possessed of fine 
and precious things, nobody knowing his rede, not even his father, the king. 

He went into a great forest and wandered about there many days, without 
knowing whither he was going, and at last, yielding to hunger and weariness, 
he found himself no longer equal to travelling ; ^o he sat down under a tree, 
thinking that his sad and sorrowful life would here come to a close. But after 
he had sat thus awhile he saw ten people, all in fine attire and bright armour, 
come riding towards the stone. On arriving there they dismounted, and having 
greeted the king's son begged him to go with them, and mount the spare horse 
they had with them, saddled and bridled in royal fashion. He accepted this 
offer and mounted the horse, and after this they rode on their way till they 
came to a large city. The riders dismounted and led the prince into the town, 
which was governed by a young and beautiful maiden-queen. The riders led 
the king's son at once to the virgin-queen, who received him with great kind- 
ness. She told him that she had heard of all the ill-luck that had befallen him 
and also that he had fled from his father. " Then," quoth she, " a burning love 
for you was kindled in my breast and a longing to heal your wounds. You 
must know that it was I who sent the ten riders to find you out and bring you 
hither. I give you the chance of staying here ; I offer you the rule of my 
whole kingdom, and I will try to sweeten your embittered life ; this is all that 

Prince Ahmad and the Peri Banu. 613 

I am able to do." Although the prince was in a sad and gloomy state of mind, 
he saw nothing better than to accept this generous offer and agree to the mar- 
riage with the maiden-queen. A grand feast was made ready, and they were 
married according to the ways of that country. And the young king took at 
once in hand the government, which he managed with much ability. 

Now the story turns homewards, to the old king. After the disappearance 
of his son he became sad and weary of life, being, as he was, sinking in age. 
His queen also had died sometime since. One day it happened that a wayfaring 
woman came to the palace. She had much knowledge about many 'things and 
knew how to tell many tales. 1 The king was greatly delighted with her story- 
telling and she got soon into his favour. Thus some time passed But in 
course of time the king fell deeply in love with this woman, and at last married 
her and made her his queen, in spite of strong dissent from the court. Shortly 
this new queen began meddling in the affairs of the government, and it soon 
turned oat that she was spoiling everything by her redes, whenever she had the 
chance. Once it happened that the queen spoke to the king and said, <( Strange 
indeed it seems to me that you make no inquiry about your youngest son's 
running away : smaller faults have been often chastised than that. You must 
have heard that he has become king in one of the neighbouring kingdoms, and 
that it is a common tale that he is going to invade your dominions with a great 
army whenever he gets the wished-for opportunity, in order to avenge the 
injustice he thinks he has suffered in that bygone bridal question. Now I want 
you to be the first in throwing this danger off-hand." The king showed little 
interest in the matter and paid to his wife's chattering but little attention. But 
she contrived at length so to speak to him as to make him place faith in her 
words, and he asked her to give him good redes, that this matter might be 
arranged in such a way as to be least observed by other folk. The queen said, 

II You must send men with gifts to him and pray him to come to you for an 
interview, in order to arrange certain political matters before your death, as 
also to strengthen your friendship with an interchange of marks of kindred. 
And then I will give you further advice as to what to da" The king was 
satisfied with this and equipped his messengers royally. 

Then the messengers came before the young king, saying they were sent 
by his father, who wished his son to come and see him without delay. To 
this the young king answered well, and lost no time in busking his men and 
himself. But when his queen knew this she said he would assuredly rue this 
journey. The king went off, however, and nothing is said of his travels till 
he came to the town where his father lived. His father received him rather 
coldly, much to the wonder and amazement of his son. And when he had 
been therei a short while his father gave him a good chiding for having run 

1 This recalls the fairy Meliora, in the romance of Partenopex de Blois, who " knew 
of ancient tales a countless store." 

6 1 4 Appendix : Variants and A nalogues. 

away. "Thereby," said the old king, "you have shown full contempt of 
myself and caused me such sorrow as well-nigh brought me to the grave. 
Therefore, according to the law, you have deserved to die ; but as you have 
delivered yourself up into my power and are, on the other hand, my son, I have 
no mind to have you killed. But I have three tasks for you which you must 
have performed within a year, on pain of death. The first is that you bring 
me a tent which will hold one hundred men but can yet be hidden in the closed 
hand j 1 the second, that you shall bring me water that cures all ailments ;* and 
the third, that you shall bring me hither a man who has not his like in the 
whole world." " Show me whither I shall go to obtain these things," said the 
young king. " That you must find out for yourself," replied the other. 

Then the old king turned his back upon his son and went off. Away went 
also the young king, no farewells being said, and nothing is told of his travels 
till he came home to his realm. He was then very sad and heavy-minded, 
and the queen seeing this asked him earnestly what had befallen him and what 
caused the gloom on his mind. He declared that this did not regard her. 
The queen answered, " I know that tasks must have been set you which it 
will not prove easy to perform. But what will it avail you to sit sullen and 
sad on account of such things ? Behave as a man, and try if these tasks may 
not indeed be accomplished.'' 

Now the king thought it best tell the queen all that had happened and 
how matters stood. "All this," said the queen, "is the rede of your step- 
mother, and it would be well indeed if she could do you no more harm by it 
than she has already tried to do. She has chosen such difficulties as she 
thought you would not easily get over, but I can do something here. The tent 
is in my possession, so there is that difficulty over. The water you have to get 
is a short way hence but very hard of approach. It is in a well and the well 
is in a cave hellishly dark. The well is watched by seven lions and three 
serpents, and from these monsters nobody has ever returned alive ; and the 
nature of the water is that it has no healing power whatever unless it be 
drawn when all these monsters are awake. Now I will risk the undertaking 
of drawing the water.'* So the queen made herself ready to go to the cave, 
taking with her seven oxen and three pigs. When she came before the cave 
she ordered the oxen to be killed and thrown before the lions and the pigs 

1 In a Norwegian folk-tale the hero receives from a dwarf a magic ship that could 
enlarge itself so as to contain any number of men, yet could be carried in the pocket. 

2 The Water of Life, the Water of Immortality, the Fountain of Youth a favourite 
and wide-spread myth during the Middle Ages. In the romance of Sir Huon of Bor- 
deaux the hero boldly encounters a griffin, and after a desperate fight, in which he is 
sorely wounded, slays the monster. Close at hand he discovers a clear fountain, at the 
bottom of which is a gravel of precious stones. " Then he dyde of his helme and dranke 
of the water his fyll, and he had no sooner dranke therof but incontynent he was hole 
of all his woundys." Nothing more frequently occurs in folk-tales than for the hero to 
be required to perform three difficult and dangerous tasks sometimes impossible, with- 
out supernatural assistance. 

Prince Ahmad and the Peri Banu. 61 5 

before the serpents. And while these monsters tore and devoured the car 
cases the queen stepped down into the well and drew as much water as she 
wanted. And she left the cave just in time, as the beasts finished devouring 
their bait. After this the queen went home to the palace, having thus got over 
the second trial. 

Then she came to her husband and said, " Now two of the tasks are done, 
but the third and indeed the hardest, of them is left. Moreover, this is one 
you must perform yourself, but I can give you some hints as to whither to go 
for it. I have got a half brother who rules over an island not far from hence. 
He is three feet high, and has one eye in the middle of his forehead He has 
a beard thirty ells long, stiff and hard as a hog's bristles. He has a dog's snout 
and cat's ears, and I should scarcely fancy he has his like in the whole world. 
When he travels he flings himself forward on a staff of fifty ells' length, with 
a pace as swift as a bird's flight. Once when my father was out hunting he 
was charmed by an ogress who lived in a cave under a waterfall, and with her 
he begat this bugbear. The island is one-third of my father's realm, but his 
son finds it too small for him. My father had a ring, the greatest gem, which 
each of us would have, sister and brother, but I got it, wherefore he has been 
my enemy ever since. Now I will write him a letter and send him the ring, 
in the hope that that will soften him and turn him in our favour. You shall, 
make ready to go to him, with a splendid suite, and when you come to his 
palace-door you shall take off your crown and creep bareheaded over the floor 
up to his throne. Then you shall kiss his right foot and give him the letter 
and the ring. And if he orders you to stand up, you have succeeded in your 
task, if not, you have failed." 

So he did everything that he was bidden by the queen, and when he 
appeared before the one-eyed king he was stupefied at his tremendous ugliness 
and his bugbear appearance ; but he plucked up courage as best he could and 
gave him the letter and the ring. When the king saw the letter and the ring 
his face brightened up, and he said, " Surely my sister finds herself in straits now, 
as she sends me this ring." And when he had read the letter he bade the 
king, his brother-in-law, stand up, and declared that he was ready to comply 
with his sister's wish and to go off at once without delay. He seized his staff 
and started away, but stopped now and then for his brother-in-law and his suite, 
to whom he gave a good chiding for their slowness. 1 They continued thus their 
inarch until they came to the palace of the queen, the ugly king's sister ; but 
when they arrived there the one-eyed king cried with a roaring voice to his 
sister, and asked her what she wished, as she had troubled him to come so far 
from home. She then told him all the matter as it really was and begged 
him to help her husband out of the trial put before him. He said he was ready 
10 do so, but would brook no delay. 

" Sav. will a courser of the Sun 
All gently with dray-horse run ?" 

6 1 6 Appendix : Variants and A nalogues. 

Now both kings went off, and nothing is told of their journey until they came to 
the old king. The young king announced to his father his coming and that he 
brought with him what he had ordered last year. He wished his father to call to- 
gether a ting? in order that he might show openly how he had performed his tasks. 
This was done, and the king and the queen and other great folk were assembled. 
First the tent was put forward and nobody could find fault with it. Secondly 
the young king gave the wondrous healing water to his father. The queen was 
prayed to taste it and see if it was the right water, taken at the right time. She 
said that both things were as they should be. Then said the old king, " Now 
the third and heaviest of all the tasks is left : come, and have it off your hands 
quickly." Then the young king summoned the king with one eye, and as he 
appeared on the ting he waxed so hideous that all the people were struck with 
fright and horror, and most of all the king. When this ugly monarch had 
shown himself for a while there he thrust his staff against the breast of the 
queen and tilted her up into the air on the top of it, and then thrust her against 
the ground with such force that every bone in her body was broken. She turned 
at once into the most monstrous troll ever beheld. After this the one-eyed king 
rushed away from the ting and the people thronged round the old king in order 
to help him, for he was in the very jaws of death from fright. The healing 
water was sprinkled on him and refreshed him. 

After the death of the queen, who was killed of course when she turned into 
a troll, the king confessed that all the tasks which he had given his son to per- 
form were undeserved and that he had acted thus, egged on by the queen. He 
called his son to him and humbly begged his forgiveness for what he had done 
against him. He declared he would atone for it by giving into his hand all that 
kingdom, while he himself only wished to live in peace and quiet for the rest of 
his days. So the young king sent for his queen and for the courtiers whom 
he loved most. And, to make a long story short, they gave up their former 
kingdom to the king with one eye, as a reward, for his lifetime, but governed 
the realm of the old king to a high age, in great glee and happiness. 

1 Ting : assembly of notables of udallers, &c. The term survives in our word bus- 
tings; and in Ztoi^-wall Tfo^-val ; where tings were held. 


/. 491- 

LEGENDS of castaway infants are common to the folk-lore of almost all 
countries and date far back into antiquity. The most usual mode of exposing 
them to perish or be rescued, as chance might direct is placing them in 
a box and launching them into a river. The story of Moses in the bulrushes, 
which must of course be familiar to everybody, is not only paralleled in ancient 
Greek and Roman legends (e.g. Perseus, Cyrus, Romulus), but finds its 
analogue in Babylonian folk-lore. 1 The leading idea of the tale of the Envious 
Sisters, who substituted a puppy, a kitten, and a rat for the three babes their 
young sister the queen had borne and sent the little innocents away to be 
destroyed, appealing, as it does, to the strongest of human instincts, is the 
theme of many popular fictions from India to Iceland. With a malignant 
mother-in-law in place of the two sisters, it is the basis of a mediaeval 
European romance entitled " The Knight of the Swan," and of a similar 
tale which occurs in " Dolopathus,'' the oldest version of the " Seven Wise 
Masters," written in Latin prose about the year 1180: A king while hunting 
loses his way in a forest and coming to a fountain perceives a beautiful lady, 
whom he carries home and duly espouses, much against the will of his mother, 
Matabrun. Some time after, having to lead his knights and men-at-arms 
against an enemy, he commits the queen, now far advanced in pregnancy, to 
the care of his mother, who undertakes that no harm shall befall her during 

1 The last of the old Dublin ballad-singers* who assumed the respectable name of 
Zozimus, and is said to have been the author of the ditties wherewith he charmed his 
street auditors, was wont to chant the legend of the Finding of Moses in aversion which 
has at least the merit of originality : 

11 In Egypt's land, upon the banks of Nile, 
King Pharoah's daughter went to bathe in style ; 
She took her dip, then went onto the land, 
And, to dry her royal pelt, she ran along the strand. 

A bulrush tripped her, whereupon she saw 

A smiling baby in a wad of straw ; 

She took it up, and said, in accents mild 

Tare an' agurs, girls I which av yes arums this child? 

The Babylonian analogue, as translated by the Rev. Prof. A. H. Sayce, in the first 
vol. of the " Folk-Lore Journal " (1883), is as follows : 

" Sargon, the mighty monarch, the King of Agane, am I. My mother was a 
princess; my father I knew not ; my father's brother loved the mountain-land. In the 
city of Azipiranu, which on the bank of the Euphrates lies, my mother, the princess, 
conceived me ; in an inaccessible spot she brought me forth. She placed me in a 
basket of rushes, with bitumen the door of my ark she closed. She launched me on 
the river, which drowned me not. The river bore me along, to Akki, the irrigator, it 
brought me. Akki, the irrigator, in the tenderness of his heart, lifted me up. Akki, 
the irrigator, as his own child brought me up. Akki, the irrigator, as his gardener 
appointed me, and in my gardenersbip the goddess I star loved me. For 45 years the 
kingdom I have ruled, and the black-headed (Accadian) race have governed.' 1 

618 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

his absence. The queen is delivered at one birth of seven lovely children, 
six boys and one girl, each of whom has a silver chain round its neck. 1 The 
king's mother plots with the midwife to do away with the babes and place 
seven little dogs in bed beside the poor queen. She gives the children to one 
of her squires, charging him either to slay them or cast them into the river. 
But when the squire enters a forest his heart relents and laying the infants, 
wrapped in his mantle, on the ground, he returns and tells his mistress that 
he has done her behest. When the king returns, the wicked Matabrun 
accuses his wife to him of having had unnatural commerce with a dog, and 
shows him the seven puppies. The scene which follows presents a striking 
likeness to that in the Arabian story after the birth of the third child. King 
Oriant is full of wrath, and at once assembles his counsellors, " dukes, earls, 
knights and other lords of the realm, with the bishop and prelate of the church," 
and having stated the case, the bishop pleads in favour of the queen, and 
finally induces him not to put her to death, but confine her in prison for the 
rest of her life. Meanwhile the children are discovered by an aged hermit, 
who takes them to his dwelling, baptises them, and brings them up. After 
some years it happens that a yeoman in the service of the king's mother, 
while hunting in the forest, perceives the seven children with silver chains 
round their necks seated under a tree. He reports this to Matabrun, who 
forthwith sends him back to kill the children and bring her their silver chains. 
He finds but six of them, one being absent with the hermit, who was gone 
alms-seeking ; and, touched by their innocent looks, he merely takes off the 
silver chains, whereupon they become transformed into pretty white swans and 
fly away. How the innocence of the queen is afterwards vindicated by her 
son Helyas he who escaped being changed into a swan and how his 
brethren and sister are restored to their proper forms would take too long to 
tell, and indeed the rest of the romance has no bearing on the Arabian tale.* 

In another mediaeval work, from which Chaucer derived his Man of Law's 
Tale, the Life of Constance, by Nicholas Trivet, an English Dominican monk, 
the saintly heroine is married to a king, in whose absence at the wars his 
mother plots against her daughter-in-law. When Constance gives birth to 
a son, the old queen causes letters to be written to the king, in which his wife 
is declared to be an evil spirit in the form of a woman and that she had 
borne, not a human child, but a hideous monster. The king, in reply, com- 
mands Constance to be tended carefully until his return. But the traitress 
contrives by means of letters forged in the king's name to have Constance 

1 This strange notion may have been derived from some Eastern source, since it 
occurs in Indian fictions; for example, in Dr. Rajendralala Mitra's "Sanskrit Buddhist 
Literature of Nepal," p. 304, we read that "there lived in the village of Vasava a rich 
householder who had born- unto him a son with a jewelled ring in his ear." And in 
the " Mahdbhdrata " we are told of a king who had a son from whose body issued 
nothing but gold the prototype of the gold-laying goose. 

2 Connected with this romance is the tale of "The Six Swans," in Grimm's 
collection see Mrs. Hunt's English translation, vol. i. p. 192. 

The Two Sisters who Envied their Cadette. 619 

and her son sent to sea in a ship, where she meets with strange adventures. 
Needless to say, the old queen's wicked devices ultimately come to naught. 

The story of the Envious Sisters as told by Galland was known in Italy (as 
Dr. W. Grimm points out in the valuable notes to his K. u. H.M.) many 
generations before the learned Frenchman was born, through the " Pleasant 
Nights " of Straparola. That Galland took his story from the Italian novelist 
it is impossible to believe, since, as Mr. Coote has observed, Straparola's work 
44 was already known in France for a couple of centuries through a popular 
French translation ' ' and Galland would at once have been an easily convicted 
copyist. Moreover, the story, imitated from Straparola, by Madame d'Aulnois, 
under the title of " La Belle Etoile et Le Prince Cheri," had been published 
before Galland's last two volumes appeared, and both those writers had the 
same publisher. It is clear, therefore, that Galland neither invented the story 
nor borrowed it from Straparola or Madame d'Aulnois. Whence, then, did he 
obtain it ? that is the question. His Arabic source has not yet been discovered, 
but a variant of the world-wide story is at the present day orally current in 
Egypt and forms No. xi. of " Contes Arabes Modernes. Recueillis et Traduits 
par Guillaume Spitta Bey " (Paris, 1883), of which the following is a trans- 
lation : 


THERE was once a King who said to his vazfr, " Let us take a walk through 
the town during the night." In walking about they came to a house where 
they heard people talking, and stopping before it they heard a girl say, "If the 
King would marry me, I would make him a tart (or pie) -so large that it would 
serve for him and his army.' ? And another said, " If the King would marry 
me, I would make him a tent that would shelter him and his whole army." 
Then a third said, " If the King would marry me, I would present him with a 
daughter and a son, with golden hair, and hair of hyacinth colour alternately ; 
if they should weep, it would thunder, and if they should laugh, the sun 
and moon would appear." The King on hearing these words went away, 
and on the following day he sent for the three girls and made the contract of 
marriage with them. He passed the first night with the one who had spoken 
first, and said to her, " Where is the tart that would be sufficient for me and 
my army ? " She answered him, ** The words of the night are greased with 
butter : when day appears they melt away." The next night he slept with the 
second, saying to her, " Where is the tent which would be large enough for me 
and my army ?"' She answered him, " It was an idea that came into my 
mind." So the King ordered them to go down into the- kitchen among the 
slaves. He passed the third night with the little one, saying, " Where are the 
boy and girl whose hair is to be like gold and hyacinth ? " She replied, 
"Tarry with me nine months and nine minutes." In due time she became 
pregnant, and on the night of her confinement the midwife was sent for. Then 

520 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

the other wife of the King went and met her in the street and said to her, 
** When she has been delivered, how much will the King give you ? " She 
answered, "He will issue orders to give me fifteen mahbubs." * The other said, 
" Behold, here are forty mahbubs from me. Take these two little blind puppies, 
and when she has given birth to a son and a daughter, take them and place 
them in a box and put these two puppies in their stead, and remove the 
children." The midwife took the money and the little dogs and went away. 
When the King's new wife was safely delivered, the midwife did according to 
her agreement with the other wife of the King, and then went before him and 
said, " I fear to speak." He answered, " Speak ; I grant you pardon/' Then 
said she, " Your wife has been delivered of two dogs." Then the King gave 
orders, saying, " Take and cover her with tar, and bind her to the staircase, 
and let any one who may go up OT down spit upon her," which was done 
accordingly. And the midwife carried away the children and threw them into 
the river. 

Now there was a fisherman who lived on an island with his wife, and they 
had no children. On the morrow he went to the water- side to fish and found 
a box driven on to the shore. He carried it home to his wife, and placing it 
between them, he said, " Listen, my dear, I am going to make a bargain with 
you : if this contains money, it will be for me ; if it contains children, they will 
be for you." She replied, " Very well, I am quite content." They then opened 
the box and found in it a baby boy and girl. The baby boy had his finger in 
the baby girl's mouth and the latter had her finger in his mouth, and they were 
sucking one another's fingers. The woman took them out of the box and 
prayed to Heaven, " Make milk come into my breasts, for the sake of these 
little ones." And by the Almighty power the milk came into her breasts, and 
she continued to bring them up until they had reached the age of twelve years. 
One day the fisherman caught two large white fish, and the youth said to 
him, " These two white fish are pretty, my father ; I will take and sell them, or 
carry them as a present to the King." So the boy took them and went away. 
He sat down with them in the Fish Market : people gathered about him, and 
those who did not look at the fish looked at the boy. The King also came 
past, and seeing the two white fish and the boy he called to him, saying, 
" What is the price, my lad ? " The boy answered, " They are a present for 
you, my prince." Thereupon the King took him to the palace and said to him, 
"What is your name?" and he replied, "My name is Muhammed, and my 
father is the fisherman who lives on the island." Then the King gave him 
thirty mahbubs, saying, " Go away, discreet one, and every day return here to 
my house." So the lad returned home and gave the money to his father. The 
next morning two more white fish were caught and Muhammed carried them 

1 Mahbub : a piece of gold, value about 10 francs ; replaces the dindr of old tales. 
Those in Egypt are all since the time of the Turks : 9, 7, or 6J frs. according to issue- 
NoU by Spitta Bey. 

The Two Sisters who Envied their Cadette. 621 

to the King, who took him into his garden and made him sit down opposite 
him. The King remained there drinking his wine and looking on the beauty 
of the youth : love for the lad entered his heart and he remained with him two 
hours. 1 Then he gave orders to provide the youth with a horse for his use in 
coming to and returning from his house, and Muhammed mounted the horse 
and rode home. 

When he visited the King the following day he was again led into the 
garden, and the other wife of the King, looking from her window saw the lad 
and recognised him. She at once sent for the old midwife, and said to her, " I 
bade you kill the children, yet they are still living upon the earth." Replied 
the old woman, " Have patience with me, O Queen, for three days, and I will 
kill him." Then she went away, and having procured a pitcher, tied it to her 
girdle, bewitched it, mounted on it, and struck it with a whip, and forthwith 
the pitcher flew away with her and descended upon the island near the fisher- 
man's cottage. 1 She found the young girl, Muhammed's sister, sitting alone, 
and thus addressed her : " My dear, why are you thus alone and sad? Tell 
your brother to fetch you the rose of Arab Zandyk, that it may sing to you 
and amuse you, instead of your being thus lonely and low-spirited." When her 
brother came home, he found her displeased and asked her, " Why are you 
vexed, my sister ? " She replied, " I should like the rose of Arab Zandyk, that 
it may sing to me and amuse me." " At your command," said he ; "I am going 
to bring it to you." 

He mounted his horse and travelled into the midst of the desert, where he 
perceived an ogress seated and pounding wheat with a millstone on her arm, 
Alighting, he came up to her and saluted her saying, " Peace be with you, 
mother ogress.* She replied, " If your safety did not prevail over your words, 
I would eat the flesh from off your bones.'' Then she asked, " Where are you 
going, Muhammed the Discreet ? " He answered, " I am in quest of the sing- 
ing rose of Arab Zandyk/ She showed him the way, saying, ' You will find 
before the palace a kid and a dog fastened, and before the kid a piece of meat 
and before the dog a bunch of clover : lift the meat and throw it to the dog, 
and give the clover to the kid.' Then the door will open for you : enter and 

1 Here again we have the old superstition of "blood speaking to blood/' referred to 
by Sir Richard, a/<f, p. 531, note 3. It often occurs in Asiatic stories. Thus in the 
Persian " Bakhtylr Nima," when the adopted son of the robber-chief is brought with 
other captives, before the king (he is really the king's own son, whom be and the queen 
abandoned in their flight through the desert), his majesty's bowels strangely yearned 
towards the youth, and in the conclusion this is carried to absurdity : when Bakhtyar is 
found to be the son of the royal pair, "the milk sprang from the breasts of the queen," 
M she looked on him albeit she must then have been long past child-bearing ! 

' The enchanted pitcher does duty here for the witches broomstick and the fairies' 
rush of European tales, but a similar conveyance is, I think, not unknown to Western 
folk- lore. 

* In a Norse story the hero on entering a forbidden room in a troll's house finds a 
horse with a pan of burning coals under his nose and a measure of corn at his tail ; and 
when he removes the coals and substitutes the corn, the horse becomes his friend and 

022 Appendix : Variants and A nalogues. 

pluck the rose ; return immediately, without looking behind you, because, if you 
do so, you will be bewitched and changed into stone, like the enchanted ones 
who are there." Muhammed the Discreet carefully followed the instructions of 
the ogress : plucked the rose, went out by the door, put back the meat before 
the kid and the clover before the dog, and carried the rose home to his sister. 

Then he again went to the house of the King, who saluted him and said, 
14 Where hast thou been, discreet one ? Why hast thou absented thyself so long 
from my house ? " And he answered, " I was sick, O King." Then the King took 
him by the hand and entered the garden, and both sat down. The wife of the 
King saw them seated together, and sending for the midwife she angrily 
asked, "Why do you befool me, old woman?" She replied, "Have patience 
with me for three days more, O Queen." Then she mounted her pitcher, and 
arriving at the house of the young girl, she said, " Has thy brother fetched 
thee the rose ? " " Yes," answered the girl, " but it does not sing." Quoth the 
old woman, " It only sings with its looking-glass," and then went away. When 
the youth returned he found his sister vexed, and he asked, " Why are you so 
sad, my sister ? " She replied, " I should like the looking-glass of the rose, by 
means of which it sings." Quoth he,/ { I obey your orders, and will bring it to 

Muhammed the Discreet rode on till he came to the ogress, who asked him 
what he wanted. " I wish," said he, " the looking-glass of the rose." " Well, 
go and do with the dog and kid as you did before. When you have entered 
the garden you will find some stairs ; go up them, and in the first room you 
come to you will find the mirror suspended. Take it, and set out directly, 
without looking behind you. If the earth shake with you, keep a brave heart, 
otherwise you will have gone on a fruitless errand." He went and did accord- 
ing to the instructions of the ogress. In taking away the mirror the earth 
shook under him, but he made his heart as hard as an anvil and cared nothing 
for the shaking. But when he brought the mirror to his sister and she had 
placed it before the rose of Arab Zandyk, still the rose sang not. 

When he visited the King, he excused his absence, saying, " I was on a 
journey with my father, but here am I, returned once more." The King led 
him by the hand into the garden, and the wife of the King again perceiving him 
she sent for the midwife and demanded of her, " Why do you mock me again, 
old woman ?" Quoth she, " Have patience with me for three days, O Queen ; 
this time will be the beginning and the end." Then she rode on her pitcher to 
Ihe island, and asked the young girl, "Has thy brother brought thee the 
mirror?" "Yes; but still the rose sings not." "Ah, it only sings with its 
mis-tress, who is called Arab Zandyk," and so saying she departed. Muhammed 
the Discreet on his return home again found his sister disconsolate, and in 
answer to his inquiries she said, " I desire Arab Zandyk, mistress of the rose 
and of the mirror, that I may amuse myself with her when you are absent." 

He at once mounted his horse and rode on till he came to the house 
of the ogress." "How fares it with you, mother ogress?" "What do 

The Two Sisters who Envied their Cadette. 625 

you want now, Muhammed the Discreet ?" " I wish Arab Zandyk, mistress 
of the rose and of the mirror." Quoth the ogress, "Many kings 
and pashas have not been able to bring her: she has changed them all 
into stone ; and thou art small and poor what will become of thee ? " 
14 Only, my dear mother ogress, show me the way, and I shall bring her, with 
the permission of God." Said the ogress : " Go to the west side of the palace ; 
there you will find an open window. Bring your horse under the window and 
then cry in a loud voice, * Descend, Arab Zandyk ! ' " Muhammed the Wary 
went accordingly, halted beneath the window, and cried out, 4< Descend, Arab 
Zandyk ! " She looked from her window scornfully and said, " Go away, young 
man." Muhammed the Discreet raised his eyes and found that half of his horse 
was changed into stone. A second time cried he in a loud voice, " Descend, 
Arab Zandyk ! " She insulted him and said, " I tell you, go away, young man." 
He looked again and found his horse entirely enchanted and half of himself as 
well. A third time he cried in a loud voice, "I tell you, descend, Arab 
Zandyk ! " She inclined herself half out of the window, and her hair fell down 
to the ground. Muhammed the Discreet seized it, twined it round his hand, 
pulled her out, and threw her on the earth. Then said she, " Thou art my fate, 
Muhammed the Wary ; relinquish thy hold of my hair, by the life of thy father 
the King." Quoth he, "My father is a fisherman." "Nay," she replied, "thy 
father is the King ; by-and-by I will tell thee his history." Quoth he, " I will 
leave hold of your hair when you have set at liberty the enchanted men." She 
made a sign with her right arm and they were at once set free. They rushed 
headlong towards Muhammed the Prudent to take her from him, but some of 
them said, " Thanks to him who hath delivered us : do you still wish to take 
her from him ?" So they left him and went their several ways. 

Arab Zandyk then took him by the hand and led him into her castle. She 
gave her servants orders to build a palace in the midst of the isle of the fisher- 
man, which being accomplished, she took Muhammed the Discreet and her 
soldiers and proceeded thither, and then said she to him, " Go to the King, and 
when he asks where you have been, reply, * I have been preparing my nuptials 
and invite you, with your army.' " He went to the King and spoke as Arab 
Zandyk had instructed him, upon which the King laughed and said to his vazfr, 
41 This young man is the son of a fisherman and comes to invite me, with my 
army 1 '' Quoth the vazfr, " On account of your love for him, command that 
the soldiers take with them food for eight days, and we also will take our pro- 
vender for eight days." The King having issued orders to that effect, and all 
being ready, they all set out, and arriving at the house of the fisherman's son, 
they found a large number of beautiful tents erected for the soldiers' accommo- 
dation and the King was astonished. Then came the feasting one dainty 
dish being quickly followed by another still more delicious, and the soldiers 
said among themselves, " We should like to remain here for two years to eat 
meat and not be obliged to eat only beans and lentils." They continued there 
forty days until the nuptials were completed, well content with their fare. Then 

624 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

the King departed with his army. The King sent a return invitation, and 
Arab Zandyk commanded her soldiers to set out in order to precede her to 
the capital. When the soldiers arrived they filled the town so that there was 
scarcely sufficient house-room for them. Then Arab Zandyk set out accom- 
panied by Muhammed and his sister. They entered the royal palace, and as 
they ascended the staircase Arab Zandyk perceived the mother of Muhammed 
covered with tar and in chains, so she threw over her a cashmere shawl and 
covered her. The servants who were standing about said to Arab Zandyk, 
" Why do you cover her with a shawl ? Spit upon her when you go up and 
also when you come down." She asked, " Why so ? " Said they, " Because 
she gave birth to two dogs." Then they went to the King and said, " A lady 
amongst the strangers has thrown a cashmere shawl over her who is fastened 
to the staircase, and has covered her without spitting upon her." The King 
went and met Arab Zandyk and asked, " Why have you covered her ? " Said 
she, " Give orders that she be conducted to the bath, cleansed, and dressed in 
a royal robe, after which I will relate her history." The King gave the 
required orders, and when she was decked in a royal robe they conducted her 
into the divan. Then said the King to Arab Zandyk, "Tell me now the 
history." Said she, " Listen, O King, the fisherman will speak/' and then Arab 
Zandyk said to the fisherman, " Is it true that your wife gave birth to 
Muhammed and his sister at one time or at separate times ? " He replied, 
" My wife has no children." "Where, then, did you get them ?" Quoth he, 
" I went one morning to fish, and found them in a box on the bank of the 
river. I took them home, and my wife brought them up. 1 * Arab Zandyk then 
said, "Hast thou heard, O King ?" and turning to his wife, "Are these thy 
children, O woman ?" Said she, "Tell them to uncover their heads that I 
may see them.'' When they uncovered their heads, they were seen to have 
alternately hair of gold and hair of hyacinth. The King then asked her, " Are 
these thy children ? " " Tell them to weep : if it thunders and rains, they are 
my children, and if it does not thunder or rain, they are not mine." The 
children wept, and it thundered and rained. Then he asked her again, " Are 
these thy children ? " And she said, " Tell them to laugh : if the sun and 
moon appear, they are my children." They told them to laugh, and the sun 
and moon appeared. Then he asked her once more, " Are these thy children ? " 
and she said, " They ar.e my children ! " Then the King appointed the 
fisherman vazfr of his right hand, and commanded that the city be illumi- 
nated for forty whole days ; on the last day he caused his other wife and 
the old witch (the midwife) to be led out and burnt, and their ashes to be 
dispersed to the winds. 

The variations between this and Galland's story are very considerable, it 
must be allowed, and though the fundamental outline is the same in both, they 
should be regarded as distinct versions of the same tale, and both are repre- 
sented by Asiatic and European stories. Here the fairy Arab Zandyk plays 

Tht Two Sisters who Envied their Cadette. 625 

the part of the Speaking- Bird, which, however, has its equivalent in the pre- 
ceding tale (No. x.) of Spitta Bey's collection : 

A man dies, leaving three sons and one daughter. The sons build a palace 
for their sister and mother. The girl falls in love with some one who is not 
considered as an eligible parti by the brothers. By the advice of an old woman, 
the girl asks her brothers to get her the singing nightingale, in hope that the 
bird would throw sand on them and thus send them down to the seventh earth. 
The eldest before setting out on this quest leaves his chaplet with his younger 
brother, saying that if it shrank it would be a token that he was dead. Journey- 
ing through the desert some one tells him that many persons have been lost 
ia their quest of the singing nightingale : he must hide himself till he sees 
the bird go into its cage and fall asleep, then shut the cage and carry it off. 
But he does not wait long enough, and tries to shut the cage while the bird's 
feet are still outside, so the bird takes up sand with its feet and throws it on 
him, and he descends to the seventh earth. The second brother, finding the 
chaplet shrunk, goes off in his turn, leaving his ring with the youngest 
brother if it contract on the finger it will betoken his death. He meets 
with the same fate as his elder brother, and now the youngest, finding the 
ring contract, sets out, leaving with his mother a rose, which will fade if he 
dies. He waits till the singing nightingale is asleep, and then shuts him in the 
cage. The bird in alarm implores to be set at liberty, but the youth demands 
first the restoration of his brothers, and the bird tells him to scatter on the 
ground some sand from beneath the cage, which he does, when only a crowd 
of negroes and Turks ( ? Ta" tdrs) appear, and confess their failure to capture 
the singing nightingale. Then the bird bids him scatter white sand, which 
being done, 500 whites and the two lost brothers appear and the three return 
home with the bird, which sings so charmingly in the palace that all the people 
come to listen to it outside. The rest of this story tells of the amours of the 
girl and a black, who, at her instigation, kills her eldest brother, but he is 
resuscitated by the Water of Life. 

Through the Moors, perhaps, the story found its way among the wandering 
tribes (the Kabail) of Northern Africa, who have curiously distorted its chief 
features, though not beyond recognition, as will be seen from the following 
abstract of their version, from M. Riviere's collection of "Contes Populates de 
la Kabylie du Djurdjura " (Paris, 1882) : 


A MAN has two wives, one of whom is childless, the other bears in succession 
seven sons and a daughter. The childless wife cuts off the little finger of each 
and takes them one by one into the forest, where they are brought up. An old 
woman comes one day and tells the daughter that if her brothers love her they 
will give her a bat. The girl cries to her brothers for a bat, and one of 

Appendix : Variants and Analogues. 

consults an aged man, who sends him to the sea-shore. He puts down'his gun 
under a tree, and a bat from above cries out, " What wild beast is this ? '' The 
youth replies, "You just go to sleep, old fellow." The bat comes down r 
touches the gun and it becomes a piece of wood ; touches the youth and he 
becomes microscopic. This in turn happens to all the brothers, after which 
the girl goes to the sea- shore, and when she is under the tree the bat calls out, 
"What wild beast is this ? " But she does not answer ; she waits till the bat 
is asleep, then climbs the tree, and catching the "bird" (sic), asks it where her 
brothers are, and on her promising to clothe the bat in silver and gold, the 
creature touches the guns and the brothers, and they are restored to their 
proper forms. The bat then conducts them to their father's house, where he 
asks lodgings and is refused by the childless wife. The husband takes them 
in however and kills a sheep for their entertainment. The childless wife 
poisons the meat, and the bat warns the children, bidding them try a cock, a 
dog, and a cat with it, which is done, and the animals die. The brothers now 
decline the food and ask that their sister be allowed to prepare somewhat for 
them to eat. Then the bat touches the eyes of the children, who immediately 
recognise their parents, and great is the rejoicing. The childless wife is torn in 
pieces by being dragged at the tail of a wild horse, and the bat, having been 
dressed in silver and gold, is sent back to his tree. 

Sir Richard has given (p. 491, note) some particulars of the version in 
Hahn's collection of modern Greek tales, which generally corresponds with 
Galland's story. There is a different version in M. Legrand's " Recueil de 
Contes Populaires Grecs" (Paris, 1881), which combines incidents in the 
modern Arabic story of Arab Zandyk with some of those in Galland and some 
which it has exclusively : 


THREE daughters of an old woman disobey the order of the King, not to 
use a light at night because of the scarcity of oil, and work on as usual. The 
King in going round the town to see if his order is obeyed comes to their 
house, and overhears the eldest girl express a wish that she were married to the 
royal baker, so that she should have plenty of bread. The second wishes 
the King's cook for her husband, to -have royal meals galore. The youngest 
wishes to have the king himself, saying she would bear him, as children, 
" Sun," " Moon," and <{ Star." Next day the King sends for them and marries 
each as she had wished. When the youngest brings forth the three children, 
in successive years, her mother-in-law, on the advice of a " wise woman,'' 
(? the midwife) substitutes a dog, a cat, and a serpent, and causes the infants 
to be put in a box and sent down the river, and the queen is disgraced. 

An old monk, in the habit of going down to the river and taking one fish 
daily, one day gets two fishes, and asks God the reason. In reply he is told that 

Th* Two Sistirs who Enviid their Cadette. 6f 7 

he will henceforth have two mouths to feed. Presently, he finds the box with 
the infant " Sun " in it and takes him home. Next year he gets one day three 
fishes, and finds the infant " Moon " ; and the third year he has four fishes one 
day and finds the baby-girl, " Star." When the children have grown up the 
monk sends them to town in order that they should learn the ways of the 
world. The eldest hearing a Jew offering a box for sale, saying, " Whoever buys 
this box will be sorry for it, and he who does not buy it will be equally sorry," 
purchases it and on taking it home finds his sister weeping for the golden 
apple which the " wise woman " (who had found them out) told her she must 
get. He opens the Jew's box and finds a green and winged horse in it. The 
horse tells him how to get the golden apple from the forty guardian dragons. 
They go and get it. After this the old woman comes again and tells the sister 
that she must get the golden bough, on which all the birds in the world sing, 
and this also is procured by the help of the green and winged horse. A third 
time the old trot comes and says to the girl, " You must get Tzitzinaena to 
explain the language of birds." The eldest brother starts off on the horse, and 
arriving at the dwelling of Tritzinaena he calls her name, whereupon he, with 
the horse, is turned to stone up to the knees ; and calling again on her they 
become marble to the waist. Then the youth burns a hair he had got from the 
monk, who instantly appears, calls out " Tzitzinaena," and she comes forth, 
and with the water of immortality the youth and horse are disenchanted. 
After the youth has returned home with Tzitzinaena, the King sees the 
three children and thinks them like those his wife had promised to bear him. 
He invites them to dinner, at which Tzitzinaena warns them of poisoned meats, 
some of which they give to a dog they had brought with them, and the animal 
diet on the spot. They ask the King to dine at their house and he goes. 
Tziuinaena by clapping her hands thrice procures a royal feast for him ; then, 
having induced the King to send for his wife, she tells the whole story of the 
mother-in-law's evil doings, and shows the King that " Sun/' " Moon " and 
" Star" are his own children. The King's mother and the old woman are torn 
to pieces. 

In Albania, as might be expected, our story is orally current in a form which 
resembles both the Greek version, as above, and the tale of Arab Zandyk, more 
especially the latter ; and it may have been derived from the Turks, though I 
am not aware that the story has been found in Turkish. This is an abstract of 
the second of M. Doxon's " Contes Albanais " (Paris, 1881), a most entertaining 
collection : 


THERE was a King who had three daughters. When he died, his successor 
proclaimed by the crier an order prohibiting the use of lights during the night 
of his accession. Having made this announcement, the King disguised himself 
and went forth alone. After walking about from place to place he came to the 

628 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

abode of the daughters of the late King, and going up close to it he overheard 
their conversation. This is what the eldest was saying, " If the King took me for 
his wife, I would make him a carpet upon which the whole of his army could 
be seated and there would still be room to spare." Then said the second " If 
the King would take me for his wife, I would make him a tent under which the 
whole army could be sheltered, and room would still remain." Lastly, the 
youngest said, "If the King should espouse me, I would bring him a son and a 
daughter with a star on their foreheads and a moon on their shoulders." 

The King, who had not lost a word of this conversation, sent for the sisters 
on the morrow and married all three. 1 The eldest, as she had declared, made a 
carpet on which the whole army was seated, and yet there was room to spare. 
The second, in her turn, made a tent under which all the army found shelter. 
As to the youngest, after a time, she grew great, and her confinement approached. 
The day she was delivered the King was absent, and on his return he inquired 
what she had given birth to. The two elder sisters replied, "A little cat and a 
little mouse." On hearing this the King ordered the mother to be placed upon 
the staircase, and commanded every one who entered to spit upon her. 

Now she had given birth to a boy and a girl, but her two sisters, after having 
shut them up in a box, sent them away by a servant to be exposed on the bank 
of the river, and a violent wind afterwards arising, the box was drifted to the 
other side. There was a mill on that side, where dwelt an old man and his wife. 
The old man having found the box brought it home. They opened it, and 
discovered the boy and the girl, with a star on their foreheads and a moon on 
their shoulders. Astonished thereat, they took them out and brought the 
children up as well as they could. 

Time passed away ; the old woman died, and soon after came the turn of 
the old man. Before dying he called the youth to him and said, " Know, my son, 
that in such a place is a cave where there is a bridle which belongs to me. 
That bridle is thine ; but avoid opening the cave before forty days have elapsed, 
if you wish the bridle to do whatever you command." The forty days having 
expired, the young man went to the cave, and on opening it found the bridle. 
He took it in his hand and said to it, "I want two horses," and in a moment 
two horses appeared. The brother and sister mounted them, and in the 
twinkling of an eye they arrived in their father's country. There the 4 young 
man opened a cafe, and his sister remained secluded at home. 

As the cafe was the best in the country, the King came to hear of it, and 
when he entered it he saw the youth, who had a star on his forehead. He 
thought him so beautiful [and lingered so long] that he returned late to the 
palace, when he was asked why he had tarried so late. He replied, that a young 
lad had opened a cafe*, and was so beautiful that he had never seen his equal ; 
and, what was most extraordinary, there was a star on his brow. The sisters no 

1 M. Dozon does not think that Muslim customs allow of a man's marrying three 
sisters at once ; but we find the king does the same in the modern Arab version. 

The Two Sisters who Envied their Cadette. 629 

sooner heard these words of the King than they understood that he referred to 
their younger sister's son. Full of rage and spite, they quickly devised a plan 
of causing his death. What did they do? They sent to his sister an old 
woman, who said to her, " Thy brother, O my daughter, can hardly love thee, 
for he is all day at the cate and has a good time of it, while he leaves thee here 
alone. If he truly loves thee, tell him to bring thee a flower from the Belle of 
the Earth, so that thou too mayest have something to divert thyself with." On 
returning home that evening the young man found his sister quite afflicted, and 
asked the cause of her grief. " Why should I not grieve ? " said she. " You leave 
me alone, secluded here, while you go about as your fancy directs. If you love 
me, go to the Belle of the Earth and bring a flower, so that I too may be amused." 
" Console yourself," replied he, and at once gave orders to the bridle. An 
enormous horse appeared, which he mounted and set off. 

As he journeyed, a lamia presented herself before him, and said, " I have a 
great desire to eat thee, but thou also excitest pity, and so I leave thee thy 
life." The young man then inquired of her how he could find the Belle of the 
Earth. " I know nothing about it, my son/' replied the lamia ; " but go ask my 
second sister." So he rode off and came to her, and she drew near, intending 
to devour him, but seeing him so beautiful, she asked where he was going. He 
told his story and said, " Do you know the way to the Belle of the Earth ?" But 
she in her turn sent him to her elder sister, who on seeing him rushed out to 
eat him, but, like the others, was touched by his comeliness and spared him ; 
and when he inquired after the Belle of the Earth, " Take this handkerchief," 
said she, "and when thou arrivest at her abode, use it to open the door. 
Inside thou wilt see a lion and a lamb ; throw brains to the lion and grass to 
the lamb.' 1 So he went forward and did all the Jamia advised. He tried the 
door and it opened ; threw brains to the lion and grass to the lamb, and they 
allowed him to pass. He went in and pulled a flower, and he had no soonei 
done so than he found himself at his own door. 

Great was his sister's joy as she began playing with the flower. But on the 
morrow the two sisters sent the old woman to her again. " Has he brought thee 
the flower ? " she asked. " Yes, he has." u Thou art content," said the old hag ; 
* 4 but if thou hadst the handkerchief of the Belle of the Earth, it would be quite 
another thing." When her brother came home he found her in tears, and in 
reply to his inquiries, " What pleasure," said she " what pleasure can this 
flower give me ? So long as I have not the handkerchief of the Belle of the 
Earth I shall not be happy." Then he, desirous that his sister should have no 
cause for grief, mounted his horse, and in the same manner as he had obtained 
the flower, possessed himself of the handkerchief and brought it home to his 

On the morrow, when the young man had gone to his cafe*, the old witch 
again visited his sister, who informed her that her brother had brought her the 
handkerchief. * How happy/ 1 said the sorceress " how happy thou art in 
having a brother who brings thee whatever thou desirest ! But if thou dost 

630 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

wish to spend thy life like a pasha's wife, thou must also obtain the owner of 
that handkerchief." 

To please his sister, the young man once more sets out, and coming to the 
eldest of the lamiae and telling her his errand, " O my son," said she, " thou 
canst go there, but as to carrying away the mistress of the handkerchief, that is 
not so easy. However, try in some way to obtain possession of her ring, for 
therein lies all her power." So he continues his journey, and after passing the 
lion and the lamb he comes to the chamber of the Belle of the Earth. He 
finds her asleep, and approaching her noiselessly draws the ring from her 
finger, upon which she awakes and discovering that she had not her ring, there 
was no alternative but to submit to his will. They set out together and in the 
twinkling of an eye arrived at the young man's house. On perceiving them the 
sister was overcome with joy. 

It happened next day that the King again went to the cafe", and on his 
return home ordered supper to be prepared, saying that he had invited the 
young man and all his friends. The sisters instructed the cooks to put poison 
in the food, which they did accordingly. At nightfall the young man arrived, 
accompanied by the Belle of the Earth, whom he had married, and his sister. 
But none of them, notwithstanding the entreaties of the King, would touch any 
food, for the Belle of the Earth had revealed to them that the meats were 
poisoned : they merely ate a few mouthfuls out of the King's mess. 

Supper over, the King invited each one to tell a story, aad when it came to 
the young man's turn, he recounted the whole story of his adventures. Then 
the King recognised in him the son of his fairest wife, whom, deceived by the 
lies of her sisters, he had exposed on the staircase. So he instantly ordered the 
two sisters to be seized and cut to pieces, and he took back his wife. As for the 
young man, he became his heir. He grew old and prospered. 

The points of difference between, and the relative merits of, Galland's story 
and Straparola's 


and whence both were probably obtained, will be considered later on, as several 
other versions or variants remain to be noticed or cited, before attempting a 
comparative analysis, not the least interesting of which is a 


IN " Melusine," for 1878, col. 206 ff., M. Luzel gives a Breton version, under 
the title of " Les Trois Filles du Boulanger ; ou, L'Eau qui danse, la Pomme 
qui chante, et 1'Oiseau de Verite," which does not appear to have been 
derived from Galland's story, although it corresponds with it closely in the first 
part. A prince overhears the conversation of three daughters of an old baker, 

The Two Sisters who Envied their Cadette. 631 

who is a widower. The eldest says that she loves the king's gardener ; the 
second, that she loves the king's valet ; and the youngest says the prince is 
her love, to whom she would bear two boys, each with a star of gold on his 
brow, and a girl, with a star of silver. The father chides them for talking 
nonsense and sends them to bed. The following day the prince sends for the 
girls to come to the palace one after the other, and having questioned them, 
tells the youngest that he desires to see her father. When she delivers the 
royal message the old baker begins to shake in his shoes, and exclaims, " I 
told you that your frivolous remarks would come to the ears of the prince, and 
now he sends for me to have me punished, without a doubt." " No, no, dear 
father ; go to the palace and fear nothing." He goes, and, to be brief, the 
three marriages duly take place. The sisters married to the royal gardener 
and valet soon become jealous of the young queen, and when they find she is 
about to become a mother they consult a fairy, who advises them to gain over 
the midwife and get her to substitute a little dog and throw the child into the 
river, which is done accordingly, when the first son with the gold star is born. 
For the second son, a dog is also substituted, and the king, as on the former 
occasion, says, " God's will be done : take care of the poor creature." But 
when the little girl with the silver star is smuggled away and the king is 
shown a third puppy as the queen's offspring, he is enraged. " They'll call 
me the father of dogs ! " he exclaims, " and not without cause." He orders the 
queen to be shut up in a tower and fed on bread and water. The children are 
picked up by a gardener, who has a garden close to the river, and brought up 
by his wife as their own. In course of time the worthy couple die, and the 
king causes the children to be brought to the palace (how he came to know 
of them the story-teller does not inform us), and as they were very pretty and 
had been well brought up, he was greatly pleased with them. Every Sunday 
they went to grand mass in the church, each having a ribbon on the brow to 
conceal the stars. All the folk were astonished at their beauty. 

One day, when the king was out hunting, an old woman came into the 
kitchen of the palace, where the sister happened to be, and exclaimed, " O how 
cold I am," and she trembled and her teeth chattered. " Come near the fire, 
my good mother," said the little girl. " Blessings on you, my child 1 How 
beautiful you are ! If you had but the Water that dances, the Apple that sings, 
and the Bird of Truth, you'd not have your equal on the earth." " Yes, but 
how to obtain these wonders ? " " You have two brothers who can procure them 
for you," and so saying, the old woman went away. When she told her 
brothers what the old woman had said, the eldest before setting out in quest of 
the three treasures leaves a poignard which as long as it can be drawn out of 
its sheath would betoken his welfare. One day it can't be drawn out, so the 
second brother goes off, leaving with his sister a rosary, as in Galland. When 
she finds the beads won't run on the string, she goes herself, on horseback, as 
a cavalier. She comes to a large plam, and in a hollow tree sees a fittle old 
with a beard of great length, which she trims for him. The old man tells 

Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

her that 60 leagues distant is an inn by the roadside, she may enter it, and 
having refreshed herself with food and drink, leave her horse there, and promise 
to pay on her return. After quitting the inn she will see a very high mountain, 
to climb which will require hands and feet, and she'll have to encounter a furious 
storm of hail and snow ; it will be bitterly cold : take care and not lose courage, 
but mount on. She'll see on either side a number of stone pillars persons like 
herself who have been thus transformed because they lost heart. On the 
summit is a plain, bordered with flowers, blooming as in May. She will see a 
gold seat under an apple-tree and should sit down and make it appear as if 
asleep; presently the bird will descend from branch to branch and enter the cage; 
quickly close it on the bird, for it is the Bird of Truth. Cut a branch of the 
tree, with an apple on it, for it is the Apple that sings. Lastly, there is also 
the fountain of water which dances : fill a flask from the fountain and in 
descending the hill sprinkle a few drops of the water on the stone pillars and 
the enchanted young princes and knights will come to life again. Such were 
the instructions of the little old man, for which the princess thanked him and 
went on her way. Arriving at the summit of the mountain, she discovered 
the cage and sitting down under the tree feigned to be asleep, when presently 
the merle entered and she at once rose up and closed it. The merle, seeing 
that he was a prisoner, said, " You have captured me, daughter of the King of 
France. Many others have tried to seize me, but none has been able till now, 
and you must have been counselled by some one." The princess then cut 
a branch of the tree with an apple on it, filled her flask with water 
from the fountain that danced, and as she went down the hill sprinkled 
a few drops on the stone pillars, which were instantly turned into princes, dukes, 
barons, and knights, and last of all her two brothers came to life, but they did 
not know her. All pressed about the princess, some saying, " Give me the 
Water which dances," others, " Give me the Apple which sings," and others, 
" Give me the Bird of Truth." But she departed quickly, carrying with her the 
three treasures, and passing the inn where she had left her horse she paid her 
bill and returned home, where she arrived long before her brothers. When at 
length they came home she embraced them, saying, "Ah, my poor brothers ! 
How much anxiety you have caused me ! How long your journey has lasted ! 
But God be praised that you are back here again." " Alas, my poor sister, we 
have indeed remained a long time away, and after all have not succeeded 
in our quest. But we may consider ourselves fortunate in having been able to 
return." ** How ! " said the princess, *' do you not bring m the Water which 
dances, the Apple which sings, and the Bird of Truth ? " " Alas ! my poor 
sister, a young knight who was a stranger to us carried them all away curse 
the rascal." The old king who had no children (or rather* who believed he had 
none) loved the two brothers and the sister very much and was highly delighted 
to see them back again. He caused a grand feast to be prepared, to which he 
invited princes, dukes, marquises, barons, and generals. Towards the end of 
the banquet the young girl placed on the table the Water, the Apple, and the 

The Two Sisters who Envied their Cadette. 633 

Bird, and bade each do its duty, whereupon the Water began to dance, and the 
Apple began to sing, and the bird began to hop about the table, and all present, 
in ecstasy, mouth and eyes wide open, looked and listened to these wonders. 
Never before had they seen such a sight. " To whom belong these marvels ? >f 
said the king when at length he was able to speak. " To me, sire," replied the 
young girl. " Is that so ? " said the King. " And from whom did you get them ? " 
" I myself procured them with much trouble," answered she. Then the two 
brothers knew that it was their sister who had delivered them. As to the king, 
he nearly lost his head in his joy and admiration. 4< My crown and my kingdom 
for your wonders, and you yourself, my young girl, shall be my queen," he 
exclaimed. " Patience for a little, sire," said she, " until you have heard my 
bird speak the Bird of Truth, for he has important things to reveal to 
you. My little bird, now speak the truth.' 1 " I consent," replied the bird ; 
" but let no one go out of this room," and all the doors were closed. The 
old sorceress of a midwife and one of the king's sisters-in-law were present, 
and became very uneasy at hearing these words. " Come now, my bird," then 
said the girl, " speak the truth," and this is what the bird said : " Twenty years 
ago, sire, your wife was shut up in a tower, abandoned by everybody, and you 
have long believed her to be dead. She has been accused unjustly." The old 
midwife and the king's sister-in law now felt indisposed and wished to leave the 
room. " Let no one depart hence," said the king. " Continue to speak the 
truth, my little bird." " You have had two sons and a daughter, sire," the bird 
went on to say " all three born of your lady, and here they are 1 Remove 
their bandages and you will see that each of them has a star on the forehead." 
They removed the bandages and saw a gold star on the brow of each of the 
boys and a silver star on the girl's brow. " The authors of all the evil," con- 
tinued the bird, " are your two sisters-in-law and this midwife this sorceress of 
the devil. They have made you believe that your wife only gave birth to little 
dogs, and your poor children were exposed on the Seine as soon as they were 
born. When the midwife that sorceress of hell learned that the children had 
been saved and afterwards brought to the palace, she sought again to destroy 
them. Penetrating one day into the palace, disguised as a beggar, and affecting 
U> be perishing from cold and hunger, she incited in the mind of the princess 
the desire to possess the Dancing- Water, the Singing- Apple, and the Bird of 
Truth myself. Her two brothers went, one after the other, in quest of these 
things, and the sorceress took very good care that they should never return. 
Nor would they have returned, if their sister had not succeeded in delivering 
them after great toil and trouble." As the bird ended his story, the king 
became unconscious, and when he revived he went himself to fetch the queen 
from the tower. He soon relurned with her to the festive chamber, holding 
her by the hand She was beautiful and gracious as ever, and having ate and 
drank a little, she died on the spot. The king, distraught with grief and anger, 
ordered a furnace to be heated, and threw into it his sister-in-law and the mid- 
wife-." ce tison de 1'enfer ! " As to the princess and her two brothers, I think 

634 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

they made good marriages all three, and as to the bird, they do not say if it 
continues still to speak the truth ; " mais je presume que oui, puisque ce n'e'tait 
pas un homme ! " 

It would indeed be surprising did we not find our story popularly known 
throughout Germany in various forms. Under the title of " The Three Little 
Birds " a version is given in Grimm's K. u. H. M> (No. 96, vol. i. of Mrs. 
Hunt's English translation), which reproduces the chief particulars of Galland's, 
tale with at least one characteristic German addition : 


A KING, who dwelt on the Keuterberg, was out hunting one day, when he 
was seen by three young girls who were watching their cows on the mountain, 
and the eldest, pointing to him, calls out to the two others, " If I do not get that 
one, I'll have none ; " the second, from another part of the hill, pointing 
to the one who was on the king's right hand, cries, " If I don't get that one, I'll 
have none ; " and the youngest, pointing to the one who was on the king's left 
hand, shouts, " And if I don't get him, I'll have none." When the king has 
returned home he sends for the three girls, and after questioning them as to 
what they had said to each other about himself and his two ministers, he takes 
the eldest girl for his own wife and marries the two others to the ministers. 
The king was very fond of his wife, for she was fair and beautiful of face, and 
when he had to go abroad for a season he left her in charge of the two sisters 
who were the wives of his ministers, as she was about to become a mother. 
Now the two sisters had no children, and when the queen gave birth to a boy 
who " brought a red star into the world with him," they threw him into the 
river, whereupon a little bird flew up into the air, singing : 

" To thy death art thou sped, 
Until God's word be said. 
In the white lily bloom, 
Brave boy, is thy tomb." 

When the king came home they told him his queen had been delivered of a 
dog, and he said, " What God does is well done." The same thing happens the 
two following years : when the queen had another little boy, the sisters sub- 
stituted a dog and the king said, " What God does is well done ; " but when 
she was delivered of a beautiful little girl, and they told the king she had this 
time born a cat, he grew angry and ordered the poor queen to be thrown into 
prison. On each occasion a fisherman who dwelt near the river drew the child 
from the water soon after it was thrown in, and having no children, his wife 
lovingly reared them. When they had grown u, the eldest once went with 
some other boys to fish, and they would not have him with them, saying to 
him, "Go away, foundling." The boy, much grieved, goes to the fisherma* 

The Two Sisters who Envied their Cadette. 635 

and asks whether he is a foundling, and the old man tells him the whole story, 
upon which the youth, spite of the fisherman's entreaties, at once sets off to seek 
his father. After walking for many days he came to a great river, by the side of 
which was an old woman fishing. He accosted her very respectfully, and she 
took him on her back and carried him across the water. When a year had 
gone by, the second boy set out in search of his brother, and the same happened 
to him as to the elder one. Then the girl went to look for her two brothers, and 
coming to the water she said to the old woman, " Good day, mother. May 
God help you with your fishing." (The brothers had said to her that she 
would seek long enough before she caught any fish, and she replied, " And thou 
wilt seek long enough before thou findest thy father "hence their failure in 
their quest.) 

When the old woman heard that, she became quite friendly, and carried her 
over the water, gave her a wand, and said to her, ' Go, my daughter, ever 
onwards by this road, and when you come to a great black dog, you must pass 
it silently and boldly, without either laughing or looking at it. Then you will 
come to a great high castle, on the threshold of which you must let the wand 
fall, and go straight through the castle and out again on the other side. There 
you will see an old fountain out of which a large tree has grown, whereon hangs 
a bird in a cage, which you must take down. Take likewise a glass of water out 
of the fountain, and with these two things go back by the same way. Pick up the 
wand again from the threshold and take it with you, and when you again pass 
by the dog strike him in the face with it, but be sure that you hit him, and then 
just come back here to me." The maiden found everything exactly as the old 
woman had said, and on her way back she found her two brothers who had 
sought each other over half the world. They went together where the black 
dog was lying on the road ; she struck it in the face and it turned into a 
handsome prince, who went with them to the river. There the old woman was 
still standing. She rejoiced much to see them again, and carried them all over 
the water, and then she too went away, for now she was freed. The others, 
however, went to the old fisherman, and all were glad that they had found 
each other again, and they hung the bird in its cage on the wall. But the 
second son could not settle at home, and took bis cross-bow and went a-hunting. 
When he was tired he took his flute and played on it. The king happened 
to be also hunting, and hearing the music went up to the youth, and said, 
14 Who has given thee leave to hunt here ? " " O, no one." " To whom dost 
thou belong, then ? " "I am the fisherman's son." " But he has no children/' 
" If thou wilt not believe it, come with me.' 1 The king did so, and questioned 
the fisherman, who told the whole story, and the little bird on the wall began to 
sing : 

11 The mother sits alone 

There in the prison small ; 
O King of the royal blood, 

These are thy children all. 

636 Appendix: Variants and Analogues* 

The sisters twain, so false, 

They wrought the children woe, 
There in the waters deep, 

Where the fishers come and go." 

Then the king took the fisherman, the three little children, and the bird back 
with him to the castle, and ordered his wife to be taken out of prison and 
brought before him. She had become very ill and weak, but her daughter 
gave her some of the water of the fountain to drink and she became strong and 
healthy. But the two false sisters were burnt, and the maiden was married to 
the Prince. 

Even in Iceland, as already stated, the same tale has long cheered the 
hardy peasant's fire-side circle, while the " wind without did roar and rustle." 
That: it should have reached that out-of-the-way country through Galland's 
version is surely inconceivable, notwithstanding the general resemblance which 
it bears to the " Histoire des Deux Sceurs jalouses de leur Cadette." It is 
found in Powell and Magnusson's "Legends of Iceland," second series, and as 
that excellent work is not often met with (and why so, I cannot understand), 
moreover, as the story is told with much naivete', I give it here in full : 


NOT very far from a town where dwelt the king lived once upon a time a 
farmer. He was well to do and had three daughters ; the eldest was twenty 
years of age, the two others younger, but both marriageable. Once, when 
they were walking outside their father's farm, they saw the king coming riding 
on horseback with two followers, his secretary and his bootmaker. The king 
was unmarried, as were also those two men. When they saw him, the eldest 
of the sisters said, " I do not wish anything higher than to be the wife of the 
king's shoemaker." Said the second, * And I of the king's secretary." Then 
the youngest said, " I wish that I were the wife of the king himself." Now 
the king heard that they were talking together, and said to his followers, " I 
will go to the girls yonder and know what it is they were talking about. It 
seemed to me that I heard one of them say, 'The king himself.'" His 
followers said that what the girls had been chattering about could hardly be of 
much importance. The king did not heed this, however, but declared that 
they would all go to the girls and have a talk with them. This they did. The 
king then asked what they had been talking about a moment ago, when he 
and his men passed them. The sisters were unwilling to tell the truth, but 
being pressed hard by the king, did so at last. Now as the damsels pleased 
the king, and he saw that they were both handsome and fair-spoken, 
particularly the youngest of them, he said that all should be as they had 
wished it. The sisters were amazed at this, but the king's will must be done. 
So the three sisters were married, each to the husband she had chosen. \ 

The Two Sisters who Envied their CadetU. 637 

But when the youngest sister had become queen, the others began to cast on 
ber looks of envy and hatred, and would have her, at any cost, dragged down 
from her lofty position. And they laid a plot for the accomplishment of this 
their will. When the queen was going to be confined for the first time, her 
sisters got leave to act as her midwives. But as soon as the child was born 
they hid it away, and ordered it to be thrown into a slough into which all the 
filth was cast. But the man to whom they had entrusted this task could not 
bring himself to do it, so put the child on the bank of the slough, thinking 
that some one might find it and save its life. And so it fell out ; for an old 
man chanced to pass the slough soon afterwards, and finding a crying child 
on the bank, thought it a strange find, took it up and brought it to his home, 
cherishing it as he could. The queen's sisters took a whelp and showed it to 
the king as his queen's offspring. The king was gtieved at this tale, but, 
being as fond of the queen as of his own life, he restrained his anger and 
punished her not 

At the second and third confinement of the queen her sisters played the 
same trick : they exposed the queen's children in order to have them drowned 
in the slough. The man, however, always left them on the bank, and it so 
happened that the same old carl always passed by and took up the children, 
and carried them home, and brought them up as best he could. The queen's 
sisters said that the second time the queen was confined she had given birth 
to a kitten, and the third time, to a log of wood. At this the king waxed 
furiously wroth, and ordered the queen to be thrown into the house where he 
kept a lion, as he did not wish this monster to fill his kingdom with deformities. 
And the sisters thought that they had managed their boat well and were 
proud of their success. The lion, however, did not devour the queen, but 
even gave her part of his food and was friendly towards her, and thus the 
queen lived with the lion a wretched enough life, without anybody's 
knowing anything about it. 

Now the story turns to the old man who fostered the king's children. The 
eldest of these, a boy, he called Vilhjimr, the second, also a boy, Sigurdr ; the 
third child was a girl and her name is unknown. AH that came to him, or with 
whom he met, the old man would ask if they knew nothing of the children he 
had found on the bank of the slough. But no one seemed to have the faintest 
notion about their birth or descent As the children grew up they were hopeful 
and fine-looking. The carl had now waxed very old, and, expecting his end, he 
gave the children this rede, always to ask every one to whom they spoke for 
news of their family and biith, in order that they might perchance be able at last 
to trace out the truth. He himself told them all he knew about the matter. After 
this the old man died, and the children followed closely his advice. Once there 
came to them an old man, of whom they asked the same questions as of alt 
others. He said he could not give them any hints on the matter himself, but that 
he could point out one to them who was able to do so. He told them that a short 
way from their farm was a large stone, whereupon was always sitting a bird 

638 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

which could both understand and speak the tongue of men. It would be best 
for them, he went on, to find this bird ; but there was a difficulty in the matter 
to be got over first, for many had gone there but none had ever returned. He 
said that many king's children had gone to this bird in order to know their 
future fate, but they had all come short in the very thing needed. He told them 
that whosoever wanted to mount the stone must be so steady as never to look 
back, whatever he might hear or see, or whatever wonders seemed to take place 
around the rock. All who did not succeed in this were changed into stones, 
together with everything they had with them. This steadiness no one had had 
yet, but whosoever had it could easily mount the rock, and having once done so 
would be able to quicken all the others who have been turned to stone there. 
For the top of the rock was flat, and there was a trap-door on it, wherein the 
bird was sitting. Underneath the trap-door was water, the nature of which was 
that it would turn all the stones back to life again . The old man ended by say- 
ing, " Now he who succeeds in getting to the top is allowed by the bird to 
take the water and sprinkle the stone-changed folk, and call them to life again, 
just as they were before." This the king's children thought no hard task. The 
brothers, however, were the most outspoken about the easiness of the thing. 
They thanked the old man much for his story and took leave of him. 

Not long after this, Vilhja'mr, the eldest brother, went to the rock. But 
before he left he said to his brother, that if three drops of blood should fall on 
his knife at table while he was away, Sigurdr should at once come to the rock, 
for then it would be sure that he fared like the others. So Vilhjdmr went away, 
following the old man's directions, and nothing further is told of him for a while. 
But after three days, or about the time when his brother should have reached the 
stone, three drops of blood fell upon Sigurdr's knife, once, while at table. He was 
startled at this and told his sister that he must needs leave her, in order to help 
his brother. He made the same agreement with his sister as Vilhja'mr had 
before made with him. Then he went away, and, to make the story short, all 
came to the same issue with him as with his brother, and the blood-drops fell 
on his sister's knife, at the time when Sigurdr should have reached the stone. 

Then the damsel went herself, to see what luck she might have. She 
succeeded in finding the rock, and when she came there she was greatly struck 
with the number of stones that surrounded it, in every shape and position. 
Some had the form of chests, others of various animals, while some again were 
in other forms. She paid no heed to all this, but going straight forward to 
the great rock began climbing it. Then she heard, all of a sudden, behind 
her a loud murmur of human voices, all talking, one louder than another, and 
amongst the number she heard those of her brothers. But she paid no heed 
to this, and took good care never to look back, in spite of all she heard 
going on behind her. Then she got at last to the top of the rock, and the 
bird greatly praised her steadiness and constancy and promised both to tell 
her anything she chose to ask him and to assist her in every way he could. 
First, she would have the surrounding stones recalled to their natural shapes 

The Two Sisters who Envied their CadetU. 639 

and life. This the bird granted her, pointing to one of the stones and saying, 
** Methinks you would free that one from his spell, if you knew who he was." 
So the king's daughter sprinkled water over all the stones and they returned 
to life again, and thanked her for their release with many fair words. Next 
she asked the bird who were the parents of herself and her brothers, and to 
whom they might trace their descent. The bird said that they were the 
children of the king of that country, and told her how the queen's sisters had 
acted by them at their birth, and last of all told her how her mother was in 
the lion's den, and how she was nearer dead than alive from sorrow and want 
of good food and comfort. 

The stone which the bird had pointed out to the princess was a king's 
ton, as noble as he was handsome. He cast affectionate looks to his life-giver 
and it was plain that each loved the other. It was he who had brought the 
greater part of the chest-shaped stones thither, the which were coffers full of 
gold and jewels. When the bird had told to every one that which each wanted 
to know, all the company of the disenchanted scattered, the three children and 
the wealthy prince going together. When they came home the first thing they 
did was to break into the lion's den. They found their mother lying in a 
swoon, for she had lost her senses on hearing the house broken into. They 
took her away, and she soon afterwards recovered. Then they dressed her in 
fitting attire, and taking her to the palace asked audience of the king. This 
granted, Vilhjamr, Sigurdr, and their sister declared to the king that they were 
his children and that they had brought with them their mother from the lion's 
den. The king was amazed at this story and at all that had happened. The 
sisters of the queen were sent for and questioned, and, having got into scrapes 
by differing in accounts, confessed at last their misdeed and told the truth. 
They were thrown before the same lion that the queen had been given to, and 
it tore them to pieces immediately and ate them up, hair and all. 

Now the queen took her former rank, and a banquet was held in joy at this 
happy turn of affairs, and for many days the palace resounded with the glee of 
the feast. And at the end of it the foreign prince wooed the king's daughter 
and gained easily her hand, and thus the banquet was begun afresh and 
became the young people's marriage -feast. Such glee has never been witnessed 
in any other kingdom. After the feast the strange prince returned to his home 
with his bride and became king after his father. Vilhjamr also married and 
took the kingdom after his father. Sigurdr married a king's daughter abroad, 
and became king after the death of his father-in-law ; and all of them lived in 
luck and prosperity. And now is the story ended 

From bleak Iceland to sunny India is certainly a "far cry," but we had 
already got half-way thither in citing the Egypto-Arabian versions, and then 
turned westwards and northwards. We must now, however, go all the way to 
Bengal for our next form of the story, which is much simpler in construction 
than any of the foregoing versions, and may be considered as a transition 

640 Appendix. Variants and Analogues. 

stage of the tale in its migration to Europe. This is an abridgment of the 
story not of Envious Sisters but of jealous co-wives from the Rev. Lai 
Bahari Day's " Folk-Tales of Bengal," l a work of no small value to students of 
the genealogy of popular fictions : 


A CERTAIN King had six wives, none of whom had children, in spite of doctors 
and all sorts of doctors' stuff. He was advised by his ministers to take a seventh 
wife. There was in the city a poor woman who earned her livelihood by gather- 
ing cow-dung from the fields, kneading it into cakes, which, after drying in the 
sun, she sold for fuel. She had a very beautiful daughter, who had contracted 
friendship with three girls much above her rank, namely, the daughter of the 
King's minister, the daughter of a rich merchant, and the daughter of the King's 
chaplain. It happened one day that all four were bathing together in a tank 
near the palace, and the King overheard them conversing as follows : Said the 
minister's daughter, "The man who marries me won't need to buy me any 
clothes, for the cloth I once put on never gets soiled, never gets old, and never 
tears.'' The merchant's daughter said, " And my husband will also be a happy 
man, for the fuel which I use in cooking never turns to ashes, but serves from 
day to day, and from year to year." Quoth the chaplain's daughter, " My 
husband too will be a happy man, for when once I cook rice it never gets 
finished ; no matter how much we may eat, the original quantity always remains 
in the pot. 1 ' 2 Then said the poor woman's daughter, "And the man who marries 
me will also be happy, for I shall give birth to twin children, a son and a 
daughter ; the girl will be divinely beautiful, and the boy will have a moon on 
his forehead and stars on the palms of his hands. 

The King didn't care to have any of the three young ladies, but resolved at 
once to marry the fourth girl, who would present him with such extraordinary 
twin children, notwithstanding her humble birth, and their nuptials were 
celebrated in due form, much to the chagrin of his six -wives. Some time after 
the King had occasion to go for six months to another part of his dominions, 
and when about to set out he told his new wife that he expected her to be con- 
fined before the period of his absence was expired^ and that he would like to be 
present with her at the time, lest her enemies (her co-wives) might do her some 
injury. So giving her a golden bell he bade her hang it in her room, and when 
the pains of labour came on to ring it, and he would be with her in a moment, no 
matter where he might be at the time ; but she must only ring it when her labour 
pains began. The six other wives had overheard all this, and the day after the 
King had departed went to the new wife's room and affected to admire the 
golden bell, and asked her where she got it and what was its use. The unsuspect- 

1 London : Macmillan and Co., p. 236 ff. 

a This recalls the biblical legend of the widow's cruse, which has its exact counterpart 
in Singhalese folk-lore. 

The Two Sisters who Envied their Cadet te. 641 

ing creature told them its purpose, upon which they all exclaimed that it was 
impossible the King could hear it ring at the distance of hundreds of miles, and 
besides, how could the King travel such a distance in the twinkling of an eye ? 
They urged her to ring the bell and convince herself that what the King had 
said to her was all nonsense. So she rang the bell, and the King instantly 
appeared, and seeing her going about as usual, he asked her why she had 
summoned him before her time. Without saying anything about the six other 
wives, she replied that she had rung the bell merely out of curiosity to know if 
what he had said was true. The King was angry, and, telling her distinctly she was 
was not to ring the bell until the labour pains came upon her, went away again. 
Some weeks after the six wives once more induced her to ring the bell, and 
when the King appeared and found she was not about to be confined and that 
she had been merely making another trial of the bell (for, as on the former 
occasion, she did not say that her co-wives had instigated her), he was greatly 
enraged, and told her that even should she ring when in the throes of childbirth 
he should not come to her, and then went away. At last the day of her con- 
finement arrived, and when she rang the bell the King did not come. 1 The six 
jealous wives seeing this went to her and said that it was not customary for the 
ladies of the palace to be confined in the royal apartments, and that she must 
go to a hut near the stables. They then sent for the midwife of the palace, and 
heavily bribed her to make away with the infant the moment it was born. The 
seventh wife gave birth, as she had promised, to a son who had a moon on his 
forehead and stars on the palms of his hands, and also to an uncommonly beau- 
tiful girl The midwife had come provided with a couple of newly-littered pups, 
which she set before the mother, saying, " You have given birth to these," and 
took away the twin-children in an earthen vessel, while the mother was in- 
sensible. The King, though he was angry with his seventh wife, yet recollecting 
that she was to give birth to an heir to his throne, changed his mind, and came 
to see her the next morning. The pups were produced before the King as the 
offspring of his new wife, and great was his anger and vexation. He gave orders 
that she should be expelled from the palace, clothed in leather, and employed 
in the market-place to drive away crows and keep off dogs, all of which was 
done accordingly. 

The midwife placed the vessel containing the twins along with the unburnt 
clay vessels which a potter had set in order and then gone to sleep, intending 
to get up during the night and light his furnace ; in this way she thought the 
little innocents would be reduced to ashes. It happened, however, that the 
potter and his wife overslept themselves that night, and it was near daybreak 
when the woman awoke and roused her husband. She then hastened to the 
furnace, and to her surprise found all the pots thoroughly baked, although no 
fire had been applied to them. Wondering at such good luck, she summoned 
her husband, who was equally astonished and pleased, and attributed it all to 
- > 

1 This recalls the story of the herd-boy who cried " Wolf ! wolf !" 

642 Appendix : Variants and A nalogues. 

some benevolent deity. In turning over the pots he came upon the one in 
which the twins were placed, and the wife looking on them as a gift from heaven 
(for she had no children) carried them into the house and gave out to the 
neighbours that they had been borne by herself. The children grew in stature 
and in strength and when they played in the fields were the admiration of every 
one that saw them. They were about twelve years of age when the potter died, 
and his wife threw herself on the pyre and was burnt with her husband's body. 
The boy with the moon on his forehead (which he always kept concealed with 
a turban, lest it should attract notice) and his beautiful sister now broke up the 
potter's establishment, sold his wheel and pots and pans, and went to the baza> 
in the King's city, which they had no sooner entered than it was lit up brilliantly. 
The shopkeepers thought them divine beings and built a house for them in the 
bazar. And when they used to ramble about they were always followed at a 
distance by the woman clothed in leather who was appointed by the King to 
drive away the crows, and by some strange impulse, she also used to hang 
about their house.i 

The youth presently bought a horse and went hunting in the neighbouring 
jungles. It happened one day, while following the chase, that the King met 
him, and, struck with his beauty, felt an unaccountable yearning for him. 1 As a 
deer went past the youth shot an arrow and in so doing his turban fell off, on 
which a bright light, like that of the moon, was seen shining on his forehead. 
When the King perceived this, it brought to his mind the son with the moon 
on his forehead and stars on the palms of his hands who was to have been 
born of his seventh queen, and would have spoken with the youth, but he 
immediately galloped off. When the King reached home his six wives 
observing his sadness asked him its cause, and he told them of the youth he 
had seen in the forest with a moon on his forehead. They began to wonder if 
the twins were not still alive, and sending for the midwife closely questioned 
her as to the fate of the children. She stoutly declared that she had herself 
seen them burnt to ashes, but she would find out who the youth was whom the 
King "had met while hunting. She soon ascertained that two strangers were 
living in a house in the bazdr which the shopkeepers had built for them, and 
when she entered the house the girl was alone, her brother having gone into the 
jungle to hunt. Pretending to be her aunt, the old woman said to her, " My 
dear child, you are so beautiful, you require only the kataki * flower to properly 
set off your charms. You should tell your brother to plant a row of that flower 
in your courtyard." " I never saw that flower," said the girl. " Of course not ; 
how could you ? It does not grow in this country, but on the other side of the 
ocean. Your brother may try and get it for you, if you ask him." This 
suggestion the old trot made in the hope that the lad would lose his life in 

1 Again the old notion of maternal and paternal instincts ; but the children don't often 
seem in folk-tales, to have a similar impulsive affection for their unknown parents. 

2 Coletropis giganfea. 

The Two Sisters who Envied their CadetU. 643 

venturing to obtain the flower. When he returned and his sister told him of 
the visit of their aunt and asked him to get her \\\t kataki flower, on which she 
had set her heart, he at once consented, albeit he thought the woman had 
imposed upon his sister by calling herself their aunt. 

Next morning he rode off on his fleet horse, and arriving on the borders of 
an immense forest he saw a number of rikshasf 1 roaming about, he went 
aside and shot with his arrows some deer and rhinoceroses and then approaching 
the rdkshasfs called out, " O auntie dear, your nephew is here." A huge rak- 
shasi strode towards him and said, " O, you are the youth with the moon on 
your forehead and stars on the palms of your hands. We were all expecting 
you, but as you have called me aunt, I will not eat you. What is it you want ? 
Have you brought anything for me to eat ? " The youth gave her the game he 
had killed, and she began devouring it. After swallowing all the carcases she 
said, " Well, what do you want ? " He answered, *' I want some kataki flowers 
for my sister." She told him it would be very difficult for him to get them, as 
they were guarded by seven hundred rakshasas, but if he was determined to 
attempt it, he had better first go to his uncle on the north side of the jungle. He 
goes, and greets the rakshasa, calling him uncle, and having regaled him with 
deer and rhinoceroses as he had done his " aunt," the rdkshasa tells him that 
in order to obtain the flower he must go through an impenetrable forest of 
kachiri*) and say to it, "O mother kachiri^ make way for me, else I perish," 
npon which a passage will be opened for him. Next he will come to the ocean, 
which he must petition in the same terms, and it would make a way for him. 
After crossing the ocean he'll come to the gardens where the kataki blooms. 
The forest opens a passage for the youth, and the ocean stands up like two 
walls on either side of him, so that he passes over dryshod. 3 He enters the 
gardens and finds himself in a grand palace which appeared unoccupied. In 
one of the apartments he sees a young damsel of more than earthly beauty 
asleep on a golden bed, and going near discovers a stick of gold lying near 
her head and a stick of silver near her feet. Taking them in his hand, by 
accident the gold stick fell upon the feet of the sleeping beauty, when she 
instantly awoke, and told him she knew that he was the youth with the moon 
on his forehead and stars on the palms of his hands ; that the seven hundred 
rdkshasas who guarded the kataki flowers were then out hunting, but would 
return by sundown, and should they find him they'd eat him. A rikshasf had 
brought her from her father's palace, and is so fond of her that she will not 
allow her to return home. By means of the gold and silver sticks the rdkshasf 
kills her when she goes off in the morning, and by means of them also she is 

1 Rakshasas and rakshasis are male and female demons, or ogtes, in the Hindu 

3 Literally, the king of birds t a fabulous species of horse remarkable for swiftness, 
which plays an important part in Tamil stories and romances. 

' Here we have a parallel to the biblical legend of the passage of the Israelites 
dryshod over the Red Sea. 

644 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

revived when she comes back in the evening. He had better flee and save his 
life. But the youth told her he would not go away without the kataki flower, 
moreover, that he would take her also with him. They spent the day in 
walking about the gardens, and when it was drawing near the time for the 
return of the ra"kshasas, the youth concealed himself under a great heap of the 
kataki flower which was in one of the rooms, having first " killed " the damsel 
by touching her head with the golden stick. The return of the seven hundred 
rdkshasas was like the noise of a mighty tempest. One of them entered the 
damsel's room and revived her, saying at the same time, " I smell a human 
being ! " i The damsel replied, " How can a human being come to this place ? M 
and the raMcshasa was satisfied. During the night the damsel worms out of the 
ralcshasf who was her mistress the secret that the lives of the seven hundred 
rdkshasas depended on the lives of a male and female bee, which were in a 
wooden box at the bottom of a tank, and that the only person who could 
seize and kill those bees was a youth with a moon on his forehead and stars 
on the palms of his hands but there could be no such youth, and so their 
Jives were safe. 2 When the ra"kshasas had all gone out as usual next morning, 
the damsel, having been revived by the youth, told him how the demons 
could be killed, and, to be brief, he was not slow to put her directions into 
practice. After the death of the seven hundred rdkshasas, the youth took 
some of the kataki flowers and left the palace accompanied by the beautiful 
damsel, whose name was Pushpavati. They passed through the ocean and 
forest of kachiri in safety, and arriving at the house in the bazdr the youth 
with the moon on his forehead presented the kataki flower to his sister. 
Going out to hunt the next day, he met the king, and his turban again 
falling off as he shot an arrow, the King saw the moon on his forehead and 
desired his friendship. The youth invited the King to his house, and he went 
thither at midday. Pushpavati then told the King (for she knew the whole 
story from first to last) how his seventh wife had been induced by his six 
other wives to ring the bell twice needlessly ; how she gave birth to a boy and 
a girl, and pups were substituted for them ; how the twins were miraculously 
saved and brought up in the house of a potter, and so forth. When she had 
concluded the King was highly enraged, and next day caused his six wicked 
wives to be buried alive. The seventh queen was brought from the market- 
place and reinstated in the palace, and the youth with a moon on his fore- 
head and stars on the palms of his hands lived happily with his beautiful 

1 Demons, ogres, trolls, giants, et hoc genus omne, never fail to discover the presence 
of human beings by their keen sense of smelling. " Fee, faw, fum ! I smell the blood 
of a British man," cries a giant when the renowned hero Jack is concealed in his castle. 
* 4 Fum ! fum ! sento odor christianum,'' exclaims an ogre in Italian folk-tales. 
" Femme, je sens la viande frafche, la chair de chretien ! " says a giant to his wife in 
French stories. 

2 In my " Popular Tales and Fictions " a number of examples are cited of life depend- 
ing on some extraneous object vol. i. pp. 347-351. 

The Two Sisters who Envied their Cadette., 645 

In two other Hindu versions known to me but the story is doubtless as 
widely spread over India as we have seen it to be over Europe only the 
leading idea of Gal land's tale reappears, though one of them suggests the 
romance of " Helyas, the Knight of the Swan," namely, the story called 
" Truth's Triumph," in Miss Frere's "Old Deccan Days," p. 55 ff. Here a 
raja* and his minister walking together come to a large garden, where is a 
4ria/-tree bearing 100 fruits but having no leaves, and the minister says to 
the rija that whosoever should marry the gardener's daughter should have 
by her 100 boys and one girl. The raja espoused the maiden, much to the 
vexation of the 12 wives he had already, and then follows a repetition of the 
golden bell affair, as in the Bengalf version. Drapadi Bai, the gardener's 
daughter and the new ranf, gives birth "right off," to 100 sons and a 
daughter, all of whom are thrown by the nurse on a dust-heap in which are 
a great number of rat-holes, the jealous co-wives fully expecting that the 
voracious rodents would quickly eat them up. The nurse tells the young 
ranf .that her children had turned into stones ; such is also the story the 12 
co-wives tell the raja on his return, and he orders poor Drapadi Bai to be 
imprisoned for life. But the rats, so far from devouring the children, nourished 
them with the utmost care. It comes to the knowledge of the 12 co-wives 
that the children are still alive ; they are discovered and turned into crows 
all save the little girl, who luckily escapes the fate of her 100 brothers, gets 
married to a great raja*, and has a son named Ramchandra, who effected the 
restoration to human form of his crow-uncles by means of magic water which 
he obtained from a rakshasf. 

The other story referred to is No. xx. of Miss Stokes* "Indian Fairy 
Tales," which Mr. Coote could not have read, else he would not have been at 
the trouble to maintain it was impossible that Galland derived his tale from 
it : "so long," says he, "as that story remained in the country of its birth 
India it was absolutely inaccessible to him, for, great traveller as he was, he 
never visited that far-off portion of the East." The fact is, this Hindu story 
only resembles Galland's, and that remotely, in the opening portion. Seven 
daughters of a poor man played daily under the shady trees in the king's 
garden with the gardener's daughter, and she used to say to them, " When I 
am married I shall have a son such a beautiful boy as he will be has 
never been seen. He will have a moon on his forehead and a star on his 
chin," and they all laughed at her. The king, having overheard what she 
so often repeated, married her, though he had already four wives. Then 
follows the golden bell affair again, with a kettledrum substituted. When 
the young queen is about to be confined her co-wives tell her it is the custom 
to bind the eyes of women in her condition, to which she submits, and after 
she has borne the wonderful boy she promised to do, they tell her she has been 
delivered of a stone. The king degraded her to the condition of a kitchen 
servant and never spoke to her. The nurse takes the baby in a box and 
buries it in the jungle. But the king's dog had followed her, and when ;he went 

646 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 

off he took the box out of the earth and swallowed the baby. Six months 
after the dog brings him up, caresses him and swallows him again. He does 
likewise at the end of a year, and the dog's keeper, having seen all told the 
four wives. They say to the king the dog had torn their clothes, and he 
replies, he'll have the brute shot to-morrow. The dog overhears this and runs 
off to the king's cow ; he induces her to save the child by swallowing him, 
and the cow consents. Next day the dog is shot, and so on : the cow is to be 
killed and induces the king's horse to swallow the child, and so on. There 
may have been originally some mystical signification attached to this part of 
the tale, but it has certainly no connection with our story. 1 

I had nearly omitted an Arabian version of the outcast infants which 
seems to have hitherto escaped notice by story-comparers. Moreover, it 
occurs in a text of The Nights, to wit, the Wortley- Montague MS., Nights 472 
-483, in the story of Abou Neut and Abou Neeuteen = Abu Niyyet and Abu" 
Niyyeteyn, according to Dr. Redhouse ; one of those translated by Jonathan 
Scott in vol. vi. of his edition of the "Arabian Nights," where, at p. 227, the 
hero marries the King's youngest daughter and the King in dying leaves him 
heir to his throne, a bequest which is disputed by the husbands of the two 
elder daughters. The young queen is brought to bed of a son r and her sisters 
bribe the midwife to declare that she has given birth to a dog and throw the 
infant at the gate of one of the royal palaces . The same occurs when a second 
son is born. But at the third lying-in of the princess her husband takes care to 
be present, and the beautiful daughter she brings forth is saved from the 
clutches of her vindictive sisters. The two little princes are taken up by a 
gardener and reared as his own children. In course of time, it happened that 
the King (Abu Neeut) and his daughter visited the garden and saw the two 
little boys playing together and the young princess felt an instinctive affection 
for them, and the King, finding them engaged in martial play, making clay- 
horses, bows and arrows, &c., had the curiosity to inquire into their history. 
The dates when they were found agreed with those of the queen's delivery ; the 
midwife also confessed ; and the King left the guilty parties to be punished by 
the pangs of their own consciences, being convinced that envy is the worst of 
torments. The two young princes were formally acknowledged and grew up to 
follow their father's example. 

We must go back to India once more if we would trace our tale to what is 
perhaps its primitive form, and that is probably of Buddhist invention ; though 

1 In the Tamil story-book, the English translation of which is called " The Dravidian 
Nights' Entertainments," a wandering princess, finding the labour-pains coming upon 
her, takes shelter in the house of a dancing-woman, who says to the nurses, " If she 
gives birth to a daughter, it is well [because the woman could train her to follow her own 
' profession '], but if a son, I do not want him ; close her eyes, remove him to a place 
where you can kill him, and throwing a bit of wood on the ground tell her she has 
given birth to it." I daresay that a story similar to the Bengali version exists among 
the Tamils. 

The Two Sisters who Envied thtir Cadette. 647 

it is quite possible this may be one of the numerous fictions which have been 
cime out of mind the common heritage of nearly all peoples, and some of which 
the early Buddhists adapted to their own purposes. Be this as it may, in the 
following tale, from Dr. Mitra's "Sanskrit Buddhist Literature of Nepal" 
(Calcutta : 1882), pp. 65, 66, we seem to have somewhat like the germ of the 
Enviov s Sisters : 


KING BRAHMADATTA picked up in Kampilla a destitute girl named Pad- 
ma* vatf, who scattered lotuses at every step she moved, and made her his 
favourite queen. She was very simple-minded. Other queens used to play 
tricks upon her, and at the time of her first delivery cheated her most shame- 
fully. The wicked ladies said to her on that occasion, " Dear Padmd, you are 
a rustic girl ; you do not know how to give birth to a royal child. Let us help 
you." She yielded. They covered her eyes, threw into the river the twin boys 
she had brought forth, and smeared her face with blood. They deceived her 
by telling her that it was only a lump of flesh that she had given birth to, and 
it had been thrown into the river. At the same time they informed her 
husband that Padmi had eaten up her two new-born sons. The King 
enraged at her inhuman conduct, ordered her to instant execution. But 
there was a shrewd man in the court who privately saved her life. A divinity 
appeared to the King in a dream, and revealed the whole truth to him. The 
King made a strict investigation in the harem, and found that Padm&vatf had 
been perfectly innocent. He became disconsolate, and gave vent to loud 
lamentations. Soon after some fishermen appeared at court and presented the 
King with two infants, who betrayed their royal lineage by the resemblance 
which their features bore to those of the King. They were reported to have 
been found in a vessel floating on the river. The courtier who saved Padm's 
life now wished to produce her before the King, but she refused to return and 
proceeded to her father's hermitage. After the death of her father she travelled 
through various places in the habit of a devotee ; and in the course of her 
peregrinations she stopped at Banares, from whence Brahmadatta conducted 
her to his capital with great honour. 

I am of opinion that this Buddhist tale is the original form of the " Envious 
Sisters '* that it ended with the restoration of the children and the vindication 
of the innocence of their mother. The second pan of our story has no necessary 
connection with the first, the elements of which it is composed beinf; found in 
scores nay, hundreds of popular fictions in every country : the quest of 
wonderful or magical objects ; one brother setting out, and by neglecting to 
follow the advice tendered him by some person he meets on his way, he comes 
to grief ; a second brother follows, with the same result ; and it is reserved for 
the youngest, and the least esteemed, to successfully accomplish the adventure. 

648 Appendix: Variants and Analogues, 

In the second part of the " Envious Sisters," the girl, the youngest of the three 
children, plays the part of the usual hero of folk-tales of this class. There is, 
generally, a seemingly wretched old man a hideous, misshapen dwarf or an 
ugly, decrepit old woman who is treated with rudeness by the two elder 
adventurers, so they do not speed in their enterprise ; but the youngest 
addresses the person in respectful terms shares his only loaf with him and 
is rewarded by counsel which enables him to bring his adventure to a successful 
end. In the "Envious Sisters," which I cannot but think Galland has garbled 
from his original, the eldest clips the beard of the hermit, and presumably the 
second does the same, since we are told he found the hermit in the like condition 
(albeit, his beard had been trimmed but a few days before). Each of them 
receives the same instructions. In a true folk-tale the two elder brothers would 
treat the old man with contempt and suffer accordingly, while the youngest 
would cut his nails and his beard, and make him more comfortable in his person. 
We do not require to go to Asiatic folk-lore for tales in which the elements of 
the second part of the " Envious Sisters " are to be found. In the German story 
of the Fox's Brush there is a quest of a golden bird. The first brother sets off 
in high hope ; on the road he sees a fox, who calls out to him not to shoot at it, 
and says that farther along the road are two inns, one of which is bright and 
cheerful looking, and he should not go into it, but rather into the other, even 
though it does not look very inviting. He shoots at the fox and misses it, then 
continues his journey, and puts up at the fine inn, where amidst riot and revel he 
forgets all about the business on which he had set out. The same happens -to 
the second brother. But the youngest says to the fox that he will not shoot it, 
and the fox takes him on its tail to the small inn, where he passes a quiet night, 
and in the morning is conveyed by the fox to the castle, wherein is the golden 
bird in a wooden cage, and so on. Analogous stories to this are plentiful 
throughout Europe and Asia ; there is one, I think, in the Wortley Montague 
MS. of The Nights. 

In Straparola's version of the " Envious Sisters," when the children's hair is 
combed pearls and precious stones fall out of it, whereby their foster-parents 
become rich ; this is only hinted at in Galland's story : the boy's hair " should be 
golden on one side and silvern on the other ; when weeping he should drop pearls 
in place of tears, and when laughing his rosy lips should be fresh as the blossom 
new-blown ; " not another word is afterwards said of this, while in the modern 
Arabic version the children are finally identified by their mother through such 
peculiarities. The silver chains with which the children are born in the romance 
of " Helyas, the Knight of the Swan," correspond with the " gold star " etc. on 
the forehead in other stories. It only remains to observe that the Bird of our 
tale who in the end relates the history of the children to their father, is 
represented in the modern Arabic version by the fairy Arab Zandyk, in the 
modern Greek by Tzitzinaena, and in the Albanian by the Belle of the Earth. 

6 4 9 



Tkt Drtam of Richts. In Croker*s Irish Fairy Legends there is a droll 
Version of this story, entitled " Dreaming Tim Jarvis." Honest Tim, we are 
told, "took to sleeping, and the sleep set him dreaming, and he dreamed all 
night, and night after night, about crocks full of gold. ... At last he dreamt 
that he found a mighty great crock of gold and silver, and where, do you 
think ? Every step of the way upon London bridge itself ! Twice Tim dreamt 
it, and three times Tim dreamt the same thing ; and at last he made up his 
mind to transport himself, and go over to London, in Pat Mahoney's coaster 
and so he did ! " Tim walks on London Bridge day after day until he sees a 
man with great black whiskers and a black cloak that reached down to the 
ground, who accosts him, and he tells the strange man about his dream. 
* Ho ! ho ! " says the strange man, " is that all, Tim ? I had a dream myself 
and I dreamed that I found a crock of gold in the Fort field, on Jerry Driscoll's 
ground at Balledehob, and, by the same token, the pit where it lay was close to 
a large furze bush, all full of yellow blossom." Tim hastens back to his old 
place, sells his cabin and garden, and buys the piece of waste ground so 
minutely described by the man with black whiskers, finds the pit, jumps into it, 
and is among the fairies, who give him leave to stuff his pockets with gold ; 
but when he returns to upper earth he discovers that he has got only a handful 
of small stones mixed with yellow furze blossoms. 

In a note appended to this tale, Croker cites the following from Grimm's 
" Deutsche Sagan," vol. i. p. 290 : A man once dreamed that if he went to 
Regensburg and walked on the bridge he should become rich. He went 
accordingly ; and when he had spent near a fortnight walking backwards and 
forwards on the bridge, a rich merchant came up to him, wondering what he 
was doing there every day, and asked him what he was looking for. He 
answered that he had dreamed if he would go to the bridge of Regensburg he 
should become rich. " Ha ! " said the merchant, ** what do you say about 
dreams ? Dreams are but froth ( Trdume sind Schdume). I too have dreamed 
that there is buried under yonder large tree (pointing to it) a great kettle full of 
money ; but I gave no heed to this, for dreams are froth." The man went 
immediately and dug under the tree, and there he got a treasure, which made a 
rich man of him, and so his dream was accomplished The same story is told 
of a baker's boy at Lubeck, who dreamed that he should find a treasure on the 
bridge ; there he met a beggar, who said he had dreamed there was one under 
a lime-tree in the churchyard of Mollen, but he would not take the trouble of 
going there. The baker's boy went, and got the treasure. It is curious to 

650 Appendix : Variants and Analogues. 

observe that all the European versions of the story have reference to a bridge, 
and it must have been brought westward in this form. 

The Quest of the Image, It has only now occurred to my mind that 
there is a very similar story in the romance of the Four Dervishes (" Kissa- 
i-Chehdr Darwesh "), a Persian work written in the I3th century, and rendered 
into Urdu about 80 years ago, under the title of " Bagh o Bahdr " (Garden of 
Spring), of which an English translation was made by L. F. Smith, which 
was afterwards improved by Duncan Forbes. There the images are of 
monkeys a circumstance which seems to point to an Indian origin of the 
story but the hero falls in love with the spotless girl, and the jinn-king takes 
possession of her, though he is ultimately compelled to give her up. The fact 
of this story of the quest of the lacking image being found in the Persian 
language is another proof that the tales in The Nights were largely derived 
from Persian story-books. 


THERE is a distorted reflection of the story in M. Rend Basset's recently pub- 
lished " Contes Populaires Berberes," No. xxix., which is to this effect : A 
taleb proclaims, " Who will sell himself for 100 mitqals ? " One offers ; the 
Ka*df ratifies the sale ; the (now) slave gives the money to his mother, and 
follows the taleb. Away they go. The taleb repeats certain words, upon which 
the earth opens, and he sends down the slave for " the candlestick, the reed, 
and the box." The slave hides the box in his pocket and says he did not find 
it. They go off, and after a time the slave discovers that his master has dis- 
appeared. He returns home, hires a house, opens the box, and finds a cloth of 
silk with seven folds ; he undoes one of them, whereupon genii swarm about 
the room, and a girl appears who dances till break of day. This occurs every 
night. The king happens to be out on a nocturnal adventure, and hearing a 
noise, enters the house arid is amused till morning. He sends for the box to 
be brought to the palace, gives the owner his daughter in marriage, and con- 
tinues to divert himself with the box till his death, when his son-in-law 
succeeds him on the throne. 


MY obliging friend, Mr. W. F. Kirby, who contributed to the loth volume of 
Sir Richard's Nights proper the very able Bibliographical Essay, has drawn 
my attention to an analogue of this tale in Geldart's Folk-Lore of Modern 
Greece : There were two brothers, one of whom was wealthy and had four, 
children, who were in feeble health, the other was poor and had seven 

Additional Notes. 6$ 

children, who were in robust health. The poor brother's wife, begging relief 
was allowed to come twice a week to the house of the rich brother to bake 
bread. Her children were starving, but the rich people gave the mother 
nothing for several days, and all she could do was to wash the dough off 
her hands for the children, who thrived, and the rich man, discovering the 
cause, made his wife compel the poor woman to wash her hands before she 
left the house. The father found his children crying for food, and pretended 
to go to the Wood for herbs, but really purposing to kill himself by falling 
from a crag. But seeing a great castle, he determined first to ascertain 
what it was, so he went near, and, having climbed a tree, saw forty-nine 
dragons come out. When they were gone he entered, and found a treasure, 
filled his bag, and hurried away. On his return home he found his 
wife weeping bitterly, but when he showed her the treasure, she said the 
first thing was to buy oil to light a lamp to our Lady. Next day they 
they bought a house, and moved into it, but agreed only to buy what they 
needed for each day's use and nothing they could do without. For two months 
they went often to church and helped the poor, till, one day, the wife of the 
rich man, who had met with losses lately, called for them and was hospitably 
received. She heard the story of the treasure, and the poor man offered to 
show his brother the place. The rich brother miscounted the dragons as they 
left the castle, and the one left to watch killed and quartered him. Two days 
afterwards his brother went to look for him, brought home the severed body, 
and got a tailor to sew the quarters together. Next day the dragons called on 
the tailor to make them coats and shoes (sic), and heard of his sewing together 
the body. He showed them the house, and forty-eight dragons got into chests, 
which the forty-ninth deposited with the poor man. The children, playing 
about the chests, heard the dragons say, " Would that it were night, that we 
might eat them all ! " So the father took forty-eight spits and made them red 
hot, and thrust them into the chests, and then said that a trick had been played 
upon him, and sent his servant to throw them one by one into the sea. As often 
as the servant returned he pretended to him that he did not throw the chest far 
enough and it had come back and thus he disposed of the whole number. In 
the morning when the last dragon came, the poor man told him one chest was 
found open : he was seized with fear, pushed in and spitted like the others, and 
the poor man became possessor of the dragons' castle. 

There can be no doubt, I think, that this story owes nothing to Galland, but 
that it is a popular Greek version of the original Asiatic tale, of which Galland'g 
" Ali Baba " is probably a fair reflection. The device of pretending to the servant 
that the dragon he had thrown into the sea was returned has its exact analogue ia 
the humorous fabliau of " Les Trois Bossus," where a rustic is made to believe 
that each of the hunchbacks had come back again, with the addition that, on 
returning from the river the third time, he seites the lady's hunchbacked 
husband and effectually disposes of him. 


(552 Appendix: Variants and Analogues. 


THOUGH my paper on this tale is of considerable length, it would perhaps have 
been deemed intolerably long had I cited all the versions of the first part the 
quest of the most wonderful thing which are current in Europe, for it is found 
everywhere, though with few variations of importance. There are two, 
however, of which I may furnish the outlines in this place. 

In the " Pentamerone " of Basile, 1 a man sends his five sons into the world 
to learn something. The eldest becomes a master-thief ; the second has learned 
the trade of shipwright ; the third has become a skilful archer ; the fourth has 
found an herb which brings the dead to life ; and the youngest has learned the 
speech of birds. Soon after they have returned home, they set out with their 
father to liberate a princess who had been stolen by a wild man, and by the 
exercise of their several arts succeed in their adventure. While they quarrel as 
to which of them had by his efforts done most to deserve the princess for wift^ 
the king gives her to the father, as the stock of all those branches. 

In the 45th of Laura Gonzenbach's " Sicilianische Marchen," the king's 
daughter is stolen by a giant and recovered by the seven sons of a poor woman. 
The eldest can run like the wind ; the second can hear, when he pifts his ear to 
the ground, all that goes on in the world ; the third can with a blow of his fist 
break through seven iron doors ; the fourth is a thief; the fifth can build an iron 
tower with a blow of his fist ; the sixth is an unfailing shot ; the seventh has a 
guitar which can awaken the dead. Youths thus wonderfully endowed figure in 
many tales, but generally as the servants of the hero. 

By comparing the different European versions it will be found that some are 
similar to the first part of the tale of Prince Ahmad, insomuch as the brothers be- 
come possessed of certain wonderful things which are each instrumental in saving 
the damsel's life ; while others more closely approach the oldest known form 
of the story, in representing the heroes as being endowed with some extraordinary 
kind of power, by means of which they rescue the damsel from a giant who had 
carried her off. It is curious to observe that in the " Sindibdd Na"ma" version 
the damsel is both carried off by a demon and at death's door, which is not th 
case of any other Asiatic form of the story. 

1 It is to be hoped we shall soon have Sir Richard Burton's promised complete English 
translation of this work, since one half is, I understand, already done. 


ABA DAN = never at all, 52. 

Ab o ha wa"= climate, 362. 

Abraham (according to Moslem born in 

Harrin), 269. 
Abraham (according to Jews and Christians 

emigrated to Harrin from " Ur of 

the Chaldees " ), 270. 
Abu Antfka" = father of antiquities (new 

noun in Arabic), II. 
Adam's Sons = a term that has not escaped 

ridicule amongst Moslems, 149. 
Address to inanimate object highly idioma- 
tic and must be cultivated by practical 

Arabists, 150. 

Affidavit amongst Moslems, 411. 
Africa (Arab. "Afrikiyah"), here used for 

the limited tract about Carthage (Tunis), 

i.e. Africa Propna, 76. 
Aghrfs, meaning Eunuch officers and 

officials, 112. 
Ajaib (pi. o/'Ajfb) = "Marvellous !" (used 

in Pers. as well as Arab.), 181. 
Alaeddin, i.e. the " Height or Glory ('Aid) 

of the Faith (al-DIn)," pron. Alaad- 

deen, 51. 

Alaeddin, a favourite with the stage, 51. 
'Alamah = an undeflowered virgin, 119. 
Alexander the Great = Lord of the Two 

Horns, 148. 
Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves (variants), 

< 3< * 
*Alim = a learned man, 119. 

Allah (Prince 'Ajib forbidden to call upon 

name ot), 18. 
Allah, Shadow of a title of the Shah, 

Almahs ffem. of* Alim = a learned man)* 

professional singing and dancing girls, 

Almas, Arab, (from 80/109, and in Hind. 

Hfra" and " Panna ")= diamond, 


Ambergris'd " (aphrodisiac), 31. 
Aminah, i.e. the secure (/em.) t 326. 
'Andalib, nightingale, 506. 
Aphrodisiacs, 133. 

'Arab al- 1 Arbd = Arabian Arabs, 1 34. 
Arab al-Arba = prehistoric Arabs. 145. 
Ardashir (King), son of Babak, 180. 
Arstable (astrolabe), 159. 
1 Asa = Staff, one of the properties of Mos- 
lem Saints, 183. 
As^flrl (olives, etc.), 405. 
Asfandiyar = two heroes of the Shahnameh, 

both types of reckless daring, 524. 
Ashkhas (//. of Shakhs) = images (vulg. 

used in Moslem realms in the sense of 

persons or individuals), 12. 
Ashrafi (Port. Xerafim), a gold coin WHOM 

value has varied, 294. 
Astrolabe, (tr. " Astronomical -gear "), 


Astrology and astronomy, 159. 
'Atfk = antique, II. 
Ay Ni'am (Yea, verily. Yes indeed), an 

emphatic and now vulgar expression, 

Mt 3 1 

Aysh (//ra*.) = Ayyu Shayyin and Laysh 
sli ayyi Shayyin, a popular corrup- 
tion of olden date, 122. 

"Aysh Khabara-k ? " how art thou ? 



Supplemental Nights. 

Ayyam al-Nifas (Arab.) = \hz forty days 
after labour, during which a woman 
may not cohabit with her husband, 502. 

BABA used in Pers., Turk, and Hindostani 

for Dad ! Dear! Child ! 311. 
Baba Abdullah = Daddy Abdullah, 311. 
Backgammon = " (jeu de) dames," a term 

of European origin, 180. 
Badam or Biddm (almond), used by way of 

small change, 348. 
Badr al-Budur, z.<f.Full moon of full moons, 


Bagh = Royal tiger, 530. 
Baghdad (explained), 25. 
Bahman, meaning one of the Spirits that 

presides over beasts of burden, 502. 
Bakht = luck, good fortune, 331. 
Banu = a lady, a dame of high degree, 419. 
Banu Adam = Sons of Adam (as opposed 

to Banu Elohim = Sons of the Gods), 

Banu al-Asfar= Sons of the yellow (Esau's 

posterity in Edom), 88. 
Banu al-Khashkhash = Sons of the (black) 

poppy (viz. Ethiopians), 88. 
Bassorah-city = "Balsorah" (Galland), 

"Bansrd" (H.V.), 3. 
Bayt al-Mukaddas = Sanctified House,4O7. 
Bazzistan (Arab.- Pers.} market place for 

Bazz= cloth, 431. 

" Bean and 'twas split, A," proverb sug- 
gesting "par nobile fratrum," 179. 
Bilisht = The long span between thumb-tip 

and minimus-tip, 353. 
Bishangarh, 422. 
Bisnagar (corruption of Sanskrit Vijayan- 

agara = City of Victory), 422. 
44 Blood hideth not from blood" (equiv. to 

Scotch " Blood is thicker than water "), 


Blood revenge religiously laudable, 180. 
"Blood speaking to blood," popular 

superstition, excusing unwarrantable 

liberties in Royal personages, 531. 
Breslau Ed. quoted, 51. 
Bridge at Baghdad made of the ribs of Og 

bin 'Unk ( = Og of the Neck), 19. 
Brow white as day and hair black as night 

(common conceit), 96. 

Bukhari=a place for steaming, 3^5. 

Bulbul-i-hazar-dastan (Arab.}, usually shor- 
tened to " Hazdr "= (bird of a thousand 
tales = the Thousand), generally called 
'Andalib, 506. 

But-Khanah = idol house, syn. with But- 
Kadah = image cuddy (tr. " Pagodas"), 


Cairo (magnificent city of Egypt), 58. 

Camel (not customary to mount lady upon 

in India), 294. 

Camel (" Ushtur " or " Unth "), 294. 
Camphor, use of, 361. 
Carpet (the Flying), prototype of, 425. 
Changes, contradictions and confusions 

inherent in Arab, stories, 93. 
Chhuchhundar, Hind. (Sorex ccerulescens) 

= musk-rat, 560. 
China = the normal Oriental " despotism , 

tempered by assassination," 164. 
Chob-dar= rod-bearer, mace-bearer, usher, 

etc., 125. 
Circus tricks with elephants, horses, etc., 


Coinage of Baghdad, 294. 
Conclusions of Tales compared, 303. 
Crows, audacious, and dangerous to men 

lying wounded, 344. 

DAHAB RAMLI (^ra.)=gold-dust washed 

out of the sand, p/acer-gold (tr. " pure 

sand-gold "), 126. 
Darbar (Hind.), term for Royal Leve"e= 

Selam (Pers.}, 451. 
Darwaysh (Pers.), pron. by Egyptians 

" Darwish," 313. 
Daryabar, der. from "Darya,'* the sea, 

and <( bar" = a region, 281. 
Daryabar (/ferj. = the ocean land), a fancy 

name for a country, .281. 
"Dasht-i-la-siwa-Hu"=a desert wherein 

is none save He (Allah), a howling 

wilderness, 284. 
"Daughters" secondary figures in geo- 

mancy, "mothers" being primary, 156. 
"Daughter shall be in his name"=be- 

trothed to her, no. 



" Dhobi-ki kutid, na Ghar-ki na Ghat- 
kl" (Hindi saying) = a washerman's 
tyke, nor of the house nor of the Ghat- 
dyke, 491. 

Dhol = drums, 137. 

Diamonds, 354. 

Din (A1-) ; omission of, in proper names 
very common, 3. 

Dinarzad and Shahrazad (for Dunyizad 
and Shahrazdcl), 3. 

Divan-door, dismounting at, the highest of 
honours, 136. 

Divan or Darbar (leve>), being also ilitde 
justice and a Court of Cassation, 107. 

Di wan origin of Fr. " Douane " and Ital. 
" Dogana," etc., 7. 

Diyir Bakr, lit. Homes (or habitations) of 
Bakr (pro*. " Diyar-i-Bekfr "), 269. 

Dogs, hatred of, inherited from Jewish 
ancestors, 330. 

" Dream is the inspiration of the True Be- 
liever, The,*' 8. 

Dress, exchange of, 171. 

EARTHQUAKES (curious coincidence), 21. 
Eaves-dropping (favourite incident of 

Eastern Storiology), 492. 
Egypt (magnificent city of) = Cairo, 58. 
Envious Sisters, The (various versions), 491. 
Evil eye, to keep off the = one of the 

functions of iron and steel, 146. 

FAIR PLAY not a jewel to the Eastern 

mind, 180. 
Fakir, a title now debased in Nile Valley 

to an insult = " poor devil," 313. 
Fakfr here the Arab. syn. of the Pen. 

Fakir also come to signify a Koran 

chaunter, 314. 
' Falling-place of my head " = picturesque 

term for " birthplace," 58. 
Fait (or Fils) = a fish scale, a spangle of 

metal, 294. 
Faraj (A1-) ba'd aJ-Shiddah = ( Joy after 

Annoy), compared to Khudadad and 

his brothers, 269. 
Farajiyah= gaberdine, 30. 
" Farr," devotions, 328. 
Fftimah = a weaner, 181. 

Fellah, natural fear of being seen in fine 

gear, which would have been supposed 

to be stolen, 171. 
Fi ghuzuni zilika (Arab.), a peculiar phrase 

(fr. "meanwhile"), 142. 
Fils (or Fals) = a fish scale, a spangle of 

metal, 294. 
Firozabddi (author of " Kamus "), Tale of, 

Finizah (Arab.) = turquoise, (Pcrs. form 

Pirozah, 270 

Flying Carpet (prototype of), 425. 
Food, calls for, at critical times not yet 

wholly obsolete amongst the civilised of 

the nineteenth century, 113. 
Force of, fancy, 182. 
Funeral, Customs at, 380 

Galland quoted, 3, 12, 18, 19, 20, 22, 51, 

53. 7i. 77, 82, 87, 91, 108, no, 116, 

140, 158, 160, 167, 171, 297, 303,321, 

3*7. 33i, 334, 335, 341, 348, 351, 353, 

355. 363. 369. 377, 380, 385, 4i6, 422, 

429, 446, 472, 55, 506. 
Gandharba-lagana (fairy wedding) of the 

Hindus, 448. 

Gandharbas = heavenly choristers, 448. 
Gardens of the Hesperides and of King 

Isope (Chaucer), 74. 
" Ghanim bin Ayyub = the Thrall o' Love " 

position of in Arab, texts compared 

with Galland, 303. 
Ghashim (Arab.), from the root " Ghashm " 

(iniquity) = a "Johnny Raw "a M raw 

laddie," 91. 
Ghat ( pop. " Ghaut ") = the steps (or 

path) which lead to a watering place, 

Ghayr an (Arab.) = otherwise that, except 

that (tr. "Still"), 82. 
Ghazn- a crease a wrinkle, 142. 
Gheir (Syriac) = for (d*r. from Greek 

?*/>), 82. 

Ghulah = an ogrefs (/em. of Ghul), 327. 
Giallo antico, verd* antico = serpentine 

limestone, 139. 
GiM-sar-shuf (/Vr/.) = head washing day 

(tr. " fuller's earth "), 348. 
Glass tokens (for coins), 351. 


Supplemental Nights. 

HA ! HA ! so Haka (fern. Haki), 

Here for thee (/r. " There ! there ! "), 


Habashi=an Abyssinian, 276. 

Habshi (chief) of Jinjirah ( = Al-Jazirah, 

the Island), admiral of the Grand 
Moghul's fleets, 276. 
Hafiz = traditionist and Koran reader, 


Halah mutawassitah (A rab.\- middle-class 

folk, 94. 

Hamidah = the Praiseworthy (according to 
Totaram Shayyan, instead of Fatimah 
a weaner), 181. 

Hammam-hu (Arab.)= bathed, i.e. scrap- 
ing, kneading, soaping, etc., 133. 

Harran, King of, 269, 

Harran (the Hebrew Charran), 269. 

Harun al-Rashid and his famous pilgrimage 
from Baghdad to Meccah, 177. 

Hatif, or invisible speaker, 519. 

Hindostani Version quoted, 3., 4, 6, 8, II, 
12, 19, 26, 27, 33, 51, 57, 61, 75. 79. 
82,85,87,95*96, 97, 105, 113, 114, 
116, 125, 129, 133, 137, 140, 144, 147, 
148, 150, 158, 159, 160, 161, 166, 167, 
170, 171, I74 175, 180, 185, 188,^89. 
294, 297, 355, 377, 380, 422, 446- 

Hizam=girdle, sash, waist-belt, tr. "waist- 
shawl," 20. 

Horses used in India, 297. 

Hydrophobia in Egypt, 330. 

Hypocrites = those who feign to be Moslems 
when they are miscreants, 83. 

IBN MiN, a vulgarism for " man," 53. 

Ibrahim al-Harrani (Arab, title for Abra- 
ham), 270. 

'* 'Iddah " = days during which a widow 
cannot marry (tr. "widowhood"), 


4 If Almighty Allah have appointed unto 
thee aught thou shall obtain it without 
toil and travail " a favourable senti- 
ment, 10. 

'"Ifr" (fern. ' If rah) = a wicked and 
dangerous man, 80. 

Ifrit, mostly derived from " 'afar ''= dust, 

*Ilm al-Ghayb (Arab.} the Science of 
Hidden Things, 452. 

'Ilm al-Hiah, gen. tr. " Astrology "hew 

meaning Scientific Physiognomy, 32. 
'Ilm al-Mukashafah = the Science by which 

Eastern adepts discover man's secret 

thoughts (tr. "Thought reading"), 

'Ilm al-Raml = (Science of the Sand), our 

geomancy, 156. 

Imam = a leader of prayer, 380. 
Imam = an antistes a leader in prayer (a 

word with a host of meanings), 27. 
'Iman = faith, prayer, 380. 
'Imarah = a building, tr. here souterrain 

(probably clerical error for Magharah 

= a cave, a souterrain), 15. 
Improbable details on which stories depend, 

" I must present myself before him (the 

King) with face unveiled," a Persian 

custom for women, 533. 
Infanticide (in accordance with the manners 

of the age), 497. 
" I will hire thee a shop in the Chauk " 

Carfax or market street, 61. 

JABABIRAH fabled Giant rulers of Syria, 

Jam = either mirror or cup (meaning doubt- 
ful), 440. 

Jam-i-Jamshfd, a well-worn commonplace 
in Moslem folk-lore, 440. 

Jarid = The Cane-play, 327. 

Jarid, pop. Jerid = the palm frond used as 
javelin, 145. 

Jathani = the wife of an elder brother (tr. 
"sister-in-law"), 373. 

Jauharjiyyah, tr. jewellers (an Arab. plui. 
of an Arabised Turkish sing, ji foir 
chi= (crafts) man), 95. 

Jazirah (A1-) (y4ra.)=r:Mesopotamia, 269. 

"Jews hold lawful to them the good of 
Moslems" (Comparison of Jew and 
Christian in matters relating to deal- 
ing), 93- 

Jewels (luminous), 354. 

Jinniyah = the Jinn feminine, 470. 

KA'AH (Arab.} the apbdyterium or un- 
dressing room upon which the vestibule 
of the Hammam opens (tr. "great 
hall"), 133- 



Kabbaltu = I have accepted, i.e. I accept 

emphatically, 37. 
"Kiki Siyih" (P<rs.) t i.e. "black 

brother" (a domestic negro, pro- 
nounces Nizi-niizf, 285. 
Kima (Arab.) = he rose ; equiv. to " he 

began " in vulg. speech, 309. 
Kama-Shastra = the Cupid gospel, 429. 
Kim Khudai = master of his passions, 

Kanini (plur. of Kinninah)= glass bottles, 

Kandil (A1-) al-'ajib = the Wonderful 

Lamp, 135. 
Kir* ah, now usually called " Maslakh" = 

stripping room, 133. 
Karur = a crore, 129. 
Kashikfsh (Arab.), from the quadril. v/ 

Kashkasha = he gathered fuel (here tr. 

"fuel sticks"), 67. 
Kasir (the Little one), 390. 
Kattu from " Katta " = he cut (in breadth, 

as opposed to Kadda = he cut length* 

wise), 52. 
Kauri (or " Cowrie,*' Cyprcea montta), 

Kawiriji (Arab.) - one who uses the 

paddle, a rower (tr. ' boatman "), 18. 
Kazzik = Cossacks, bandits, etc. (here tr. 

"pirates"), 288. 
Khatibah (more usually 11 Khutbah ") = the 

Friday sermon preached by the Khatib, 

Khawibf (Arab.) (pi. of Khabiyah) = large 

jars usually of pottery, n. 
Khudi, mcd. Pen. form of old Khudii = 

Sovereign -King. 269. 
Khudadad (derivation), 269. 
"Khudadad and his brothers," position 

of, compared with Galland, 303. 
Khudadad and his brothers, relative posi- 
tion of, 269. 

Khurtum = the trunk of an elephant, 19. 
Khuwaj = hunger, 61 
" Khwajd " for " Khwajah, 61. 
Khwa"jah = merchant and gentleman, 61. 
Khwdjah is also a honorific title given by 

Khorasinis to their notables, 61. 
Khwijah Hasan al-Habbal = Master Hasan 

the Ropemaker, 341. 
Kidl,/*/./>rKa-tiUka on this wise, 174. 

Kimcabs velvets with gold embroidery, 

King in Persia speaks of himself in third 
person and swears by his own head, 
etc., 531. 

" King's Command is upon the head and 
the eyes " = must be obeyed, 164. 

Kinship, Terms of, 373. 

Kiosque or belvedere (used to avoid con- 
fusion between Kiosque and window), 

Kiramat- miracles, 181. 

Kbit (Carat), most often one twenty-fourth 
of the dinar, 91. 

" KurWn-at basham " = May I become 
thy Corban or Sacrifice (formula used 
in addressing the Shah), 530. 

LA'AB AL-AND^B (Arab.) = javelin-play, 

" Lafla M-isnayn bi-zulumati-h " = tr. 
winding his trunk around them (latter 
word =s Khurtum the trunk of an 
elephant), 19. 

Lajawardi, tr. " lapis lazuli," 444. 

Lakh (Anglicised " lac ") = loo.ocx), 357. 

Lane quoted, 38, 119, 334. 49*. 

Lnuh=tablet (of the heart), 386. 

Lens, origin of, and its applied use in 
telescopes and microscopes, 432. 

Li win (Arab.) = Saloon, 71. 

Lume eterno (of the Rosicrocians) = little 
sepulchral lamps burned by the He- 
brews, Greeks and Romans, 72. 

MAGHARAH = a cave, a sont^rrain, 15. 

Maghrabi Sahhir= Wizard, 54. 

Maghrabi, the Magician (in classical Ara- 
bic " Maghribi = a dweller in trie, 
Sunset-land"), 53. 

Mih-i-Khudif = the sovereign moon, 269. 

Majlis gann Kami = to give some life to 
the company (tr. " to warm them 
into talk"), 535. 

Malay Aigla = Sandal wood (tr. Eagle- 
wood), 20. 

Mameluke Beys (dignity forbidding them 
to walk even the length of a carpet), 


Mankalah, a favourite game in Egypt, 


Supplemental Nights. 

Marhum ( A1-) = my late brother (tr. "my 
brother who hath found mercy"), 58. 

Marjanah = the "Coralline" (from Mar- 
jan=/ed coral), tr. " Morgiana," 378. 

Market (Central) = the great Bazar, the 
Indian " Chauk," 422. 

Marmar Sumaki (Arab.) = porphyry of 
which ancient Egypt supplied finest 
specimens. (tr. " Sumalci marble "), 139. 

Marriages (Morganatic), 33. 

Maslakh = stripping room (also Ka'ah), 


Mauza' (Arab.) = & place, an apartment, a 

saloon (here tr. " hall "), 71. 
Maydan = lain, 145. 
Medinah (A1-), whose title is " Al-Munaw- 

warah" = the Illumined, 58. 
Mesmerism (" impose her hand upon his 

head"), 189. 
Mesopotamia (ffeb. Naharaym, Arab. Al- 

Jazi'rah), 269. 

Met (Smdi) = a. kind of day, 348. 
Mihaffah bi-takhtrawan (Arab.) = a covered 

litter, 33. 
Milah (pleasant) for Mubah (permitted), 

Min ba'di an " for " Min ba'di ma "= 

after that, 34. 
Min (who) for "Man," a Syro-Egyptian 

form common throughout the MS., 14. 
Mirror, a compromising magical article of 

many kinds, 23. 
Mirrors, made to open and shut in the 

East, 24. 
Misr = used in a threefold sense for Egypt, 

old Cairo and new Cairo, 34. 
Modesty in story of Alaeddin, 148. 
" Moormen/' famed as Magicians, 54. 
Morier and the literal translation of the 

" Arabian Nights," 191. 
Moslems make Wuzu-ablution and pray 

dawn-prayers before doing anything 

worldly, 141. 
Mother (all women resembled her) ; an 

absurd statement to the West but true 

in the East, 97. 

Mother takes rank before the wife, accord- 
ing to Moslem fashion, 301. 
" Mothers," the prime figures of geomancy, 

daughters being secondary, 156. 
Mubarak = The blessed or well omened, 13. 

Mukattaf al-Yadayn = arms crossed behind 
his back (a servile posture), 16. 

Mundfik (Arab.) = " an infidel who pre- 
tendeth to believe in Al-Islam" (tr. 
"hypocrite"). 83. 

Munawwarah (Ai-) = the Illumined (title 
given to Al-Medinah), 58. 

Musawwadatayn (Arab.) = lit. two black 
things, rough copies, etc. (tr " affright"), 
8 7 . 

Mushayyaddt, tr. " high-builded," 66. 

Musika (Arab.}, classically "MusikI, = 
Mova-LKrj, Pers. Musikar= Music, 137. 

Mustapha, 53. 

Mut' ah temporary and extempore mar- 
riage, 33. 

NABB^JT (Egyptian and Syrian weapon), 

Nablus = Samaria, 271. 

Nad b = brandishing or throwing the jave- 
lin, 154. 

Naharaym (ffeb.) = Mesopotamia, 269. 

Nakhing = making the camels kneel, 314. 

"Nakshat" and " Sifrat," tr. Coin and 
Gold, 29. 

Nard = table, 180. 

Nardashir (Nard Ardashir?), 180. 

Nazaranah prop. - the gift (or gifts) 
offered by Moslem noble to his feudal 
superior, 486. 

Naz o andaz (Pers.) = coquetry in a half- 
honest sense (tr. " amorous liveliness"), 

Negroids dreaded by Hindus, 276. 

Nimak-haram, tr. "a traitor to the salt," 

Nur*al Nihar = Light of the Day, 419. 

Nur Jehan (Pers.) = "Light of the 
World," 473. 

" O WOMAN," popular form of address, 

Oarsman stands to his work in the East, 

Objects (better kept hidden) seen with 

naked eye by telescope (vulgar belief), 

Ogbin 'Unk (= Ogof ihe Neck), the fabled 

King of Bashan, 19. 



lamps for new lampswho will 

exchange?" 159. 

Onager, the Gur-i-Khdr of Persia, 282. 
Onager (wild ass) confounded with Zebra, 


PA-ANDAZ (Ptrs.) a a carpet made of 

costly stuffs a perquisite of Royal 

attendants, 141. 
Pa-andaz = carpets and costly cloths 

(spread between Baghdad and Mecc.ih 

for Harun al-Rashid), 177. 
Papal bulls and Kings' letters (in Mediaeval 

Europe) were placed for respect on the 

head, 89. 

Parasang (Gr. pacrayyr^), 45$. 
Parwez, older pronunciation of the mod. 

(Khusrau) "Parviz," 502. 
Pasbkhanah = a mosquito-curtain, 121. 
Paysd (pice) = two farthings and in 

weight = \ an oz., 352. 
Penalty inflicted to ensure obedience, 336. 
Pcri-Banu (The Fairy), 419. 
Peri (Parf) in its modern form has a super* 

ficial resemblance to " Fairy/' 419. 
Peris, 419. 

Perizidah = Fairy-born, 502. 
Phantasms from the Divine Presence of 

'All 'Aziz Efendi. the Cretan, 41. 
Pictures effaces whose eyes seem to follow 

beholders, 427. 
Pilaff (Turco- English form of Persian 

Pulio), 326. 

Pilgrimage quoted, 314, 330, 405, 406. 
Pilgrims settle in the two Holy Places, 


Pfr = saint, spiritual guide, 8. 
Pirozah = turquoise (Arab, form Ffruzah), 


" Pfsh-namaz" (Ptrs.) = fore-prayer, 380. 
Pointing the moral," 265. 
Prayers for the Dead recited over bier, 380. 
Precocious children, 416. 
Primitive attire of Easterns in hot climate, 

Prince, petty Indian, preceded in state 

processions by led hones whose saddles 

are studded with diamonds, 134. 

RABITB (steed of purest) = an Arab of 
noble strain, 287 . 

'Rafa al-Bashkhanah" a he raised a 

hanging, a curtain (/r."the airas,") 121. 
Rahil - Rachel, 35$. 
Riih yasir (Arab.) about to become 

(peasant's language), 131. 
Rajah of Baroda, 134. 
Rail (Arab.) pro*, by Europeans " Roll ** 

(Rotolo) = pounds, 128. 
Re-union after severance modesty in 

Alaeddin as contrasted with Kamar al- 

Zamdn, etc., 176. 
Right hand (seated at the) a place of 

honour in Europe ; amongst Moslems 

the place would be to the left, 136. 
"Ring and the Lamp" have a magical 

effect over physique and morale of the 

owner, 104. 
' ' Rise that I may seat myself in thy stead " 

(addressed to the full moon) tru* 

Orientalism, 151. 

Rosso antico (mostly a porphyry), 139. 
Rukh = Roc, 186. 
Rukh (the mythical mixed up with the 

mysterious bird Simurgh), iSS. 

SABBATH (the) = the Saturday, 64. 
Sabba raml = cast in sand (may be clerical 

error for " Zaraba raml " = he struck 

sand, i.e. made geomantic figures), here 

tr. " striking a geomantic table," 68. 
Sa'd = prosperity, 341. 
Sa'di = prosperous, 341. 
Sadi (Al-)w'al-Ghadi = those who went 

forth bctime (the latter may mean those 

who came for the morning meal), 27. 
Sahal for Sahal (broad "Doric" of 

Syria), 135. 
Sahra" (Arab.) = desert (applied by Per- 

sians to waste grounds about a town ; 

here to " barren hill-country"), 67. 
Samaria (according to Moslems, Shamrin 

and Shamrun),27i. 
Samawah, confounded with Kerbela ft 

desert with a place of pilgrimage, 484. 
Samiwah (Town on Euphrates), 484. 
Sdmawah, Desert of, 484. 
Sarraf=a money changer (tr. "shroff"), 


Saru (dakhalu, jalasu etc.), in the plural 
for the dual popular and vulgai 
speech, 66. 

Supplemental Nights. 

Seal ring (or Signet ring), 72. 

Seeking to release Soul of Prince who had 
perished, 298. 

Semi -abortions (preservation of, a curse 
in xixth century), 498. 

Serraglio-palace ; der. from Serai (Pers.} 
= a palace, also der. from Cerrar 
(Spanish and Portuguese) = to shut up, 

"Shadow of Allah," a title of the Shah, 531. 

Shaghri (F&s.), e.g. <f Kyafsh-i-Shaghri " 
=r slippers of shagreen, 282. 

Shagreen {der. from Pers. "Shaghri**) 
produced by skin of wild ass, 282. 

Shahinshah=King of kings, 534. 

Shahinshah, a title first assumed by Ar- 
dashir, 500. 

Shahmiyanah = a huge marquee or pavilion 
tent in India, 469. 

Shahr-Banu (Pers.} = City-queen, 486. 

Shahwah (Arab.} = lust, 33. 

Shahwah daram = I am lustful, 33. 

"Shaking out his skirts," a sign of will- 
ingly parting with possessions, 316. 

Shakhs, cither a person or an image (here 
tr. "Image,"), 18. 

Sham'adin, a would-be Arabic plural of 
the Persian ' ' Sham'adan " = candle- 
stick, chandelier, 109. 

Shamrin (and Sharnrun) = Samaria, 271. 

Shastras Hindu Scripture or Holy Writ, 

Shayy bi-lash = /zV. "a thing gratis or in 

vain" (here tr. "matters beyond the 

range of matter"), 68. 
*' She had never gene or com* " = she was 

in her own, home, 183. 
Shisheh-ka pays=a (pice) small coin of 

glass, 35L 
Shlve-Zad, 47 
"Shuf-hu," Arab, (colloquial form of 

" Shuf-hu") = look upon him, 58. 
Sidi = my lord, 321. 
Sidi mistaken for Sayyid, 321. 
Sidi Nu'uman (sometimes "SidiNouman," 

or "Sidi Ncnman"), 321 
Silvern platters, 93. 
Simsiaa (or"Samsam") The grain = Sesa- 

mwn Orientate, 370. 
Skin of wild ass produce the famous 

Shagreen, 282. 

Sleeping postures, 183. 

Sleeping with drawn sword between man 

and maid, 116. 
"Smell the air" = a walk, a " constitu- 

" Son of a minute, The," i.e. which would 

take effect in the shortest time, 171. 
Son (youngest of three) generally Fortune's 

favourite in folk -lore, 453. 
Soghd Samarkand plain of Samarkand, 

Soul of Prince who had perished (seeking 

to release), 298. 
Stirrup, The Arab, 478. 
Subjects (Persian) both women and mea 

are virtually King's slaves, 533. 
Suicide, Hindus adepts in, 166. 
Sullam(//. " Salalim") popularly used for 

a flight of steps (tr. here souterrain- 

stairs), 75. 
Suluk (Arab.} a sufistical expression, the 

road to salvation (tr. " paths "), 185. 
Surdyyat \lit. the Pleiades) and Sham'- 
adin, a would-be plural (Arabic) of the 

Persian ' ' Sham'adun ' ' = candlestick, 

chandelier, 109. 

TAFFAYTU-HU = to extinguish (tr. "put it 
out"), 84. 

Tan (Arab.} ^ kind of clay, 348. 

Tak (or Tdkah) = a little wall-niche, 351. 

Tamanna (Arab.}= "She saluted the king 
by kissing her finger tips and raising 
them to her brow," 108. 

Tawaf = Circuiting (an act of worship), 

Teshurah = a Gift offered with the object 
of being admitted to the presence, loo. 

Thag, tquiv. to our English '* Thug," 374. 

Thag = simply a "cheat," but may also 
mean a robber, assassin, etc. (tr. "Ban- 
dits"), 374- 

Theatre (shifting), 429. 

"There is not a present (Teshurdh) to 
bring to the man of God," 100. 

Thirst takes precedence of hunger, 320. 

Thought reading, 539. 

" Three things lack permanency, Wealth 
without trading, Learning without dis- 
putation, Government without justice 1 * 



Thy commands, O my mother, be upon 

my head, 89. 
" Thy Highness," a form of addressing 

royalty common in Austria, 108. 
Trafir = trumpets, 137. 
44 Treasure-trove," the possession of ex- 
posing the owner to torture, 105. 
Tu bard Thag hai = thou art a precious 

rascal, 374. 

Turcoman blood (steed of). 297. 
Turquoise stone, held ar a talisman in the 

East, 270. 

*UBB (Arab.}=. bulge between breast and 
outer robe (tr. " breast pccket " ), 

"Uktuli's-siraj," the Persian "Chiragh- 

ra bi-kush"=kill the lamp, 84. 
U nth = Camel, 294. 
Ushtnrs Camel, 294. 

VijAYANACARA=fcCity of Victory, 422. 
Visions frequent in Al- Islam, 405. 
Voices, disembodied, 515. 

WA'D AL-BANAT, or burial of Mauudat 

(living daughters), 498. 
" Wahid min al-Tujjar," the very vulgar 

style, 64. 

Wahsh = Lion, 1 8. 
Wall= the Civil Governor, 375. 
Wallmah/r0/.=a marriage feast, 15. 
Washing hands and face a preparatory 

washing as a matter of cleanliness 

preceding the formal Wuzu-ablution, 


Watercloset, wedding night in, 115. 
Wa2ifzh prop.^z task, a stipend, a saloiy, 

(ktrttr. dutie*"), 328. 
Wozir expected to know everything in 

Oriental countries, 163. 
Wrddmr;, description of, 114. 

Wedding-night in water-closet, 115. 

14 What's past is past and what is written 

is written and sh&ll come to pass" 

(Sir C. Murray's " Hassan "), 10. 
" Whoso leaveth issue dieth not " (popular 

saying amongst Moslems), 55. 
Wild ass (onager), 282. 
Wild ass, meat of, 282. 
Wild ass (skin of) produces the famous 

Shagreen, 282. 
Will of man, The, a mighty motive 

power, 426. 
Windows (first mention of in Arabic 

MS. of " Alaeddin "), 186. 
Women (Alaeddin used to think all 

resembled his mother) ; an absurd 

statement to the West but true in the 

East, 97. 
"Woven air," local name of the Patna 

gauzes, 423. 

YA RXjUL (for Rajul) = O man (an 

Egypto-Syrian form), 58. 
Yamin, copyist's error for " Yasimln,'* 

tr. gelsamine, 29. 
Yaum al-Mahshar /j'Mhe Day of Assembly 

(tr. Judgment Day), 21. 

ZAHAB-RAML( = placer-gold, 15. 

Zalm = the dewlap of sheep or goat, 19. 

Zangi-i- Adam- kh' war (tr. Ethiopian) after- 
wards called Habashi = an Abyssinian, 

Zanzibar = BlackIand, 281. 

Zarb Kami (Geomancy), 4. 

Zayn al- Asnam, object of the tale, 38. 

Zayn al-Asnam (Turkish) version by Mr. 
Gibb (nole), 41. 

Zayn al-Asnam ; old ver. "Ornament 
(adornment ?) of the Statues, 3. 

Zayn (al-Din = Adornment of The Faith 
and owner oi) al-Asndm = the Images, 3. 

Zij -: tible of the starsalmanack, 159. 


BURTON, tr. 


Arabian nights, Supp,, 

v. jj, pt 


. 3 



f Wff//M