Part 5 out of 7
before we reassembled to discuss our plans a fearful storm was raging;
so terrific was the sea that I knew no boat could live, and had a
broadside been fired at the entrance of the bay we should not have
heard it through the howling of the blast. For two days and two nights
the hurricane continued, but on the third day the sun again appeared,
and the wind lulling, the sea went rapidly down. Full of anxiety, I
readily complied with the boys' desire to put off to Shark Island and
discharge the guns; for who could tell what had been the result of the
gale; perhaps the vessel had been driven upon the rocky shore, or,
fearing such a fate, she had left the coast and weathered the storm
out at sea; if so, she might never return.
With these thoughts I accompanied Jack and Franz to the fort. One--
two--we fired the guns and waited.
For some minutes there was no reply, and then an answering report
rolled in the distance. There was no longer room for doubt; the
strangers were still in the vicinity, and were aware of our presence.
We waved the flag as a signal to those on shore that all was well, and
quickly returned. We found the whole family in a state of the greatest
excitement, and I felt it necessary to calm them down as much as
possible, for I could neither answer the questions with which I was
besieged, nor conceal the fact that the visit of the vessel might not
prove so advantageous as they expected.
Fritz and I at once prepared to make a reconnaissance; we armed
ourselves with our guns, pistols, and cutlasses, took a spyglass,
seated ourselves in the cajack, and with a parting entreaty from the
mother to be cautious, paddled out of the bay and round the high
cliffs on our left. For nearly an hour we advanced in the direction
from which the reports of the guns seemed to proceed. Nothing could we
see, however, but the frowning rocks and cliffs, and the waves beating
restlessly at their base. Cape Pug-Nose was reached, and we began to
round the bluff old point. In a moment all our doubts were dispelled,
and joy and gratitude to the Great Giver of all good filled our
hearts. There, in the little sheltered cove beyond the cape, her sails
furled, her anchor dropped, lay a brig of war with the English colors
at her masthead.
With the glass I could discern figures upon the deck, and upon the
shore beyond several tents pitched under the shelter of the trees, and
the smoke of fires rising among them. As I handed the glass to Fritz,
I felt a sudden misgiving. "What," said I to myself, "can this English
vessel be doing thus far from the usual track of ships?" and I called
to mind tales of mutinous crews who have risen against their officers,
have chosen some such sheltered retreat as this, have disguised the
vessel, and then sailed forth to rob and plunder upon the high seas.
Fritz then exclaimed: "I can see the captain, father; he is speaking
to one of the officers, and I can see his face quite well; he is
English, I am certain he is English, and the flag speaks the truth!"
and he put the glass again in my hand that I might see for myself.
Still keeping under the shelter of the cliff, I carefully surveyed the
vessel. There was no doubt that Fritz was right, and my fears were
once more dispelled; all was neatness and regularity on board; the
spotless decks, the burnished steel and brass, and the air of perfect
order which pervaded both ship and camp, betokened that authority and
discipline there reigned. For some minutes longer we continued our
examination of the scene, and then, satisfied by the appearance of the
camp on shore that there was no chance of the brig quitting the coast
for several days, we resolved to return without betraying our
presence, for I was unwilling to appear before these strangers until
we could do so in better form, and in a manner more in accordance with
our actual resources.
We again landed at Rockburg, where our family awaited our arrival in
eager expectation, and as fully as possible we told them of all we had
seen. They thoroughly approved of our caution, and even Jenny, whose
hopes had been excited to the highest pitch by our description of the
English vessel, and who longed to meet her countrymen once more,
agreed to postpone the visit until the following day, when, having put
our yacht into good order, we might pay our respects to the captain,
not as poor shipwrecked creatures begging assistance, but as lords and
masters of the land, seeking to know for what purpose strangers were
visiting the coast.
The rest of the day was occupied in making our preparations. Our
dainty little craft was made to look her very best; her decks were
scrubbed, her brass guns burnished, all lumber removed and put ashore,
and the flag of England hoisted to her peak. The mother overhauled our
wardrobes, and the neatest uniforms were put ready for the boys and
me, for though neither my wife nor Jenny had ever dreamed of appearing
otherwise than they would have done had they been at home among
civilized people in Europe, yet we, accustomed daily to rough and
often even dirty work, had adopted just that costume which best suited
our comfort and inclination. We should indeed have surprised the smart
man-o'-war's men, had we appeared in our great, shapeless, wide-
brimmed hats, our linen coats and trousers, our broad leathern belts
and hairy buskins; so we next day readily donned the more becoming
At the break of that eventful morn, when we were destined once more to
set our eyes upon our fellow-men, and to hear news of the outer world,
from which for so many years we had been exiled, we assembled in our
little breakfast room. The meal was eaten hurriedly and almost in
silence, for our hearts were too full, and our minds too busily
occupied, to allow of any outward display of excitement. Fritz and
Jack then slipped quietly out, and presently returned from the garden
with baskets of the choicest fruits in fresh and fragrant profusion,
and with these, as presents for the strangers, we went on board our
[Illustration: We brought up within hail]
The anchor was weighed, the sails set, and with the canoe in tow the
little vessel, as though partaking of our hopes and joyous
expectation, bounded merrily over the waters of Safety Bay, gave a
wide berth to the Reef, against whose frowning rocks the sea still
lashed itself to foam, and kept away for the cove, where the English
ship unconsciously awaited us. The Pug-Nosed Cape was reached, and, to
the surprise and utter amazement of the strangers, we rounded the
point and brought up within hail. Every eye on board and on shore was
turned toward us, every glass was produced and fixed upon our motions;
for of all the strange sights which the gallant crew may have looked
for, such an anomaly as a pleasure yacht, manned by such a party as
ours, and cruising upon this strange and inhospitable shore, was the
furthest from their thoughts.
Fritz and I stepped into our boat and pulled for the brig. In another
minute we were upon her deck. The captain, with the simple frankness
of a British seaman, welcomed us cordially, and having led us into his
cabin, begged us to explain to what good fortune he owed a visit from
residents upon a coast generally deemed uninhabited, or the abode of
the fiercest savages.
I gave him an outline of the history of the wreck, and of our sojourn
upon these shores, and spoke to him, too, of Miss Montrose, and of the
providential way in which we had been the means of rescuing her from
her lonely position.
"Then," said the gallant officer, rising and grasping Fritz by the
hand, "let me heartily thank you in my own name, and in that of
Colonel Montrose; for it was the hope of finding some trace of that
brave girl that led me to these shores. The disappearance of the
Dorcas has been a terrible blow to the colonel, and yet, though for
three years no word of her or any of those who sailed in her has
reached England, he has never entirely abandoned all hope of again
hearing of his daughter. I knew this, and a few weeks ago, when I was
about to leave Sydney for the Cape, I found three men who declared
themselves survivors of the Dorcas and said that their boat, of four
which left the wreck, was the only one which, to their knowledge,
reached land in safety. From them I learned all particulars, and
applying for permission to cruise in these latitudes, I sailed in
hopes of finding further traces of the unfortunate crew. My efforts
have been rewarded by unlooked-for success."
Fritz replied most modestly to the praises which he received, and then
the captain begged to be introduced to my wife and Miss Montrose.
"And," he continued, "if it be not contrary to your rules of
discipline for the whole ship's company to be absent at once, I will
now send a boat for the remainder of your party."
One of the officers was accordingly dispatched to the yacht with a
polite message, and the mother, Jenny, and the boys were presently on
Our kind host greeted them most warmly, and he and his officers vied
with one another in doing us honor. They proved, indeed, most pleasant
entertainers, and the time passed rapidly away. At luncheon the
captain told us that there had sailed with him from Sydney an invalid
gentleman, Mr. Wolston, his wife, and two daughters; but that, though
the sea voyage had been recommended on account of his health, it had
not done Mr. Wolston so much good as had been anticipated, and he had
suffered so greatly from the effects of the storm, which had driven
the Unicorn into the bay for repairs, that he had been eager to rest
for a short time on land.
We were anxious to meet the family, and in the afternoon it was
decided that we should pay them a visit. Tents had been pitched for
their accommodation under the shady trees, and when we landed we found
Mr. Wolston seated by one of them, enjoying the cool sea breeze. He
and his family were delighted to see us, and so much did we enjoy
their society, that evening found us still upon the shore. It was too
late then to return to Rockburg, and the captain kindly offered tents
for the accommodation of those who could not find room in the yacht.
The boys spent the night on land.
That night I had a long and serious consultation with my wife, as to
whether or not we really had any well-grounded reason for wishing to
return to Europe. It would be childish to undertake a voyage thither
simply because an opportunity offered for doing so.
Neither knew to what decision the feelings of the other inclined; each
was afraid of expressing what might run counter to those feelings; but
gradually it began to appear that neither entertained any strong wish
to leave the peaceful island; and finally we discovered that the real
wish which lay at the bottom of both our hearts was to adopt New
Switzerland as thenceforward our home.
What can be more delightful than to find harmony of opinion in those
we love, when a great and momentous decision has to be taken?
My dear wife assured me that she desired nothing more earnestly than
to spend the rest of her days in a place to which she had become so
much attached, provided I, and at least two of her sons, also wished
From the other two she would willingly part, if they chose to return
to Europe, with the understanding that they must endeavor to send out
emigrants of a good class to join us, and form a prosperous colony,
adding that she thought the island ought to continue to bear the name
of our native country, even if inhabited in future time by colonists
from England, as well as from Switzerland.
I heartily approved of this excellent idea, and on consultation with
my sons I found that Fritz, whose interest in Jenny was most apparent,
and Franz, who longed for school life, earnestly desired to return to
Europe, while Ernest and Jack were more than willing to remain. Mr.
Wolston, with his wife and elder daughter, decided to make New
Switzerland their future home, and thus my wife and I were left far
from solitary when our two sons parted from us.
By JOHN G. SAXE
I asked of Echo, t'other day,
(Whose words are few and often funny,)
What to a novice she could say
Of courtship, love and matrimony?
Quoth Echo, plainly,--"Matter-o'-money!"
Whom should I marry?--should it be
A dashing damsel, gay and pert,
A pattern of inconstancy;
Or selfish, mercenary flirt?
Quoth Echo, sharply,--"Nary flirt!"
What if, aweary of the strife
That long has lured the dear deceiver,
She promise to amend her life,
And sin no more; can I believe her?
Quoth Echo, very promptly,--"Leave her!"
But if some maiden with a heart
On me should venture to bestow it,
Pray should I act the wiser part
To take the treasure, or forego it?
Quoth Echo, with decision,--"Go it!"
But what if, seemingly afraid
To bind her fate in Hymen's fetter,
She vow she means to die a maid,
In answer to my loving letter?
Quoth Echo, rather coolly,--"Let her!"
What if, in spite of her disdain,
I find my heart intwined about
With Cupid's dear delicious chain
So closely that I can't get out?
Quoth Echo, laughingly,--"Get out!"
But if some maid with beauty blest,
As pure and fair as Heaven can make her.
Will share my labor and my rest
Till envious Death shall overtake her?
Quoth Echo (sotto voce),--"Take her!"
THE STORY OF ALADDIN, OR THE WONDERFUL LAMP
NOTE.--The Arabian Nights' Entertainment, from which Aladdin and
Sinbad the Sailor are taken, is a celebrated collection of Eastern
tales. It is supposed that the Arabians got them from the people of
India, who in their turn are supposed to have received them from
Persia. They were introduced into Europe in a French translation about
the beginning of the eighteenth century, and have always been very
popular, not only on account of the interest of the stories, but
because they give excellent pictures of life and customs in the East.
In certain Mohammedan lands to-day people tell and believe stories of
genii which are quite as extraordinary as some of those contained in
the Arabian Nights.
The tales, although they are separate stories, are fancifully
connected as follows:
A certain sultan, Schahriar, having found that his wife was unfaithful
to him, had her put to death and vowed that each day thereafter he
would marry a new wife, who should be put to death on the following
morning. At length Scheherazade, a daughter of the vizier, determined
to try by a clever device to stop the sultan's cruelty. By her own
request she became the wife of the sultan, but in the morning, before
he had a chance to order her beheaded, she began to tell him a most
interesting story. In the middle of this tale she broke off, and the
sultan was so curious as to what was to follow, that he declared she
should live until the following day. Each day the sultaness practiced
the same device, and each day the sultan's curiosity got the better of
his cruelty, so that he allowed her to live on. For a thousand and one
nights she kept up her story telling, and by the end of that time, the
sultan had fallen so in love with his wife that he declared she should
live. Thus by her heroism and her accomplishments she prevented the
death of many girls, who might have become victims of the sultan's
In one of the great, rich cities of China, there once lived a poor
tailor named Mustapha. Although his family consisted only of his wife
and a son, he could scarcely by the hardest labor support them.
Aladdin, the son, was an idle fellow, careless and disobedient. Every
morning early he would go out into the streets, and there he would
stay all day, playing in the public places with other shiftless
children of his own age.
When he was old enough to learn a trade, his father took him into his
own shop and taught him how to use a needle, but no sooner was the
father's back turned than Aladdin was gone for the day. Mustapha
punished him again and again, but everything failed to keep Aladdin
off the street, and finally his father was compelled to abandon him to
his evil ways. The poor old tailor felt his son's disobedience so
keenly that he fell sick, and in a few months died of sorrow.
Aladdin, no longer restrained by the fear of his father, was never out
of the streets by day, and gave himself up wholly to idleness and play
till he was fifteen years old.
At about that time, as he was one day playing with some rough boys in
the street, a stranger who was passing stopped and eyed the boy
keenly. Though the stranger looked like any other man, he was in
reality an African magician, who had but recently arrived in the
Chinese city. Aladdin was an attractive boy, and because of his habits
the sorcerer felt that the boy was well suited to his purposes.
Accordingly, after talking with the other boys and learning Aladdin's
history, he called the youngster away from his playmates.
"Child," he asked, "was not your father called Mustapha the tailor?"
"Yes, sir," said the boy, "but he has been dead for some time."
At these words the magician threw his arms about Aladdin's neck, and,
with tears in his eyes, kissed the boy several times, saying, "I am
your uncle; your father was my own brother. I knew you as soon as I
saw you, you are so much like him. Go, my son," he continued, handing
the boy some money, "to your mother! Give her my love and tell her
that I will visit her to-morrow."
Overjoyed with the money his uncle had given him, Aladdin ran to his
"O mother," he cried, "have I an uncle?"
"No, my son," she replied, "you have no uncle either on your father's
side or on mine."
"I am just now come," said Aladdin, "from a man who says he is my
uncle and my father's brother. He cried and kissed me when I told him
my father was dead, and gave me money, sending his love to you, and
promising to come and pay you a visit, that he may see the house my
father lived and died in."
"Indeed, child," replied the mother, "your father had no brother, nor
have you an uncle."
The next day the magician found Aladdin playing in another part of the
town, and embracing him as before, put two pieces of gold into his
hand, and said to him, "Carry this, child, to your mother; tell her
that I will come and see her to-night, and bid her get us something
for supper; but first show me the house where you live."
Aladdin showed the African magician the house, and carried the two
pieces of gold to his mother, who went out and bought provisions.
She spent the whole day in preparing the supper; and at night, when it
was ready, said to her son, "Perhaps the stranger knows not how to
find our house; go and bring him, if you meet with him."
Aladdin was just ready to go, when the magician knocked at the door,
and came in loaded with wine and all sorts of fruits, which he brought
for a dessert. After he had given what he brought into Aladdin's
hands, he saluted his mother, and desired to show him the place where
his brother Mustapha used to sit on the sofa; and when she had done
so, he fell down, and kissed it several times, crying out, with tears
in his eyes, "My poor brother! how unhappy am I, not to have come soon
enough to give you one last embrace!"
Aladdin's mother desired him to sit down in the same place, but he
"No," said he, "I shall not do that; but give me leave to sit opposite
it, that although I see not the master of a family so dear to me, I
may at least behold the place where he used to sit."
When the magician had comfortably seated himself, he began to talk
with Aladdin's mother.
"My good sister," said he, "do not be surprised that you have never
seen me in all the time you were married to my brother Mustapha,
blessed be his memory. I have been forty years traveling in India,
Persia, Arabia, Syria and Egypt. In Africa I lived for many years, but
at last I wished to see my native country again, and to embrace my
dear brother. Nothing ever afflicted me so much as hearing of my
brother's death. But God be praised for all things! It is a comfort
for me to find in my nephew one who has my brother's most remarkable
The widow wept so sorrowfully at these kind allusions to her husband,
that the sorcerer changed the conversation.
"What business do you follow, my nephew," he asked; "have you any
The youth hung down his head and could make no answer, but his mother
began to complain. "Aladdin is an idle fellow. When his father was
alive, he tried to teach the boy his trade, but without success. Now I
can do nothing with the boy, who forgets that he is no longer a child.
He idles away his time in the streets till I have resolved one of
these days to turn him out to provide for himself."
"This is not well, my nephew; you must think about helping yourself.
There are many trades, and if you do not like your father's, I will
try to help you. If you wish, I will hire a shop for you and furnish
it with linens and fine cloths, and with them you can make money with
which to buy new goods, and thus support yourself in an honorable
This plan just suited the lazy Aladdin. He told the magician that he
felt more inclined to be a business man than to engage in any trade.
"Very well, then," said the pretended uncle, "I will take you with me
to-morrow to the best merchants in the city, clothe you properly, and
set you up in a shop."
The widow could no longer doubt that the magician was her husband's
brother, and after exhorting Aladdin to be worthy of his uncle's
kindness, served the supper, and the three chatted on various subjects
until the time came for the magician to take his leave.
The next day he came as he had promised, and taking Aladdin with him,
purchased a fine suit of clothing, just such as the boy wished.
After this the sorcerer took Aladdin through the city, showed him the
fine buildings, took him into the rich stores, and finally introduced
him to many of the prominent merchants with whom the young storekeeper
would have to deal.
When night came, the sorcerer conducted Aladdin to his home, where his
mother, seeing him so richly clothed, bestowed a thousand blessings
upon the head of the magician. The second day the magician took
Aladdin into the country, saying that on the third day he would
purchase the shop. They went out at one of the gates of the city and
visited a number of beautiful palaces, at every one of which the
sorcerer would ask Aladdin if he did not think it fine, and then
mention some palace farther on that was even more magnificent. By such
device he led the youth far into the country, and in the heat of the
day sat down with him on the edge of a fountain of clear water that
discharged itself by the mouth of a bronze lion.
"Come, nephew," he said, "let us rest ourselves, and we shall be
better able to pursue our walk." The magician drew from his pocket
some cakes and fruit, and as they lunched he urged Aladdin to change
his habits, become industrious, and seek the companionship of the wise
After resting a time, the magician by various devices led Aladdin
still farther into the country, until they came between two mountains
of nearly equal size, divided by a narrow valley.
"Now," said the magician, who had come all the way from Africa to
China for this very purpose, "we will go no farther. I will show you
here some wonderful things, for which you will thank me. But while I
strike a light, gather up all the loose, dry sticks you can find, so
that we can build a fire."
As soon as they had a good fire burning, the magician threw upon it
some incense, pronouncing at the same time several magical words which
Aladdin could not understand.
Scarcely were the words uttered, when the earth in front of the
magician opened and disclosed a stone with a brass ring in it. Aladdin
was so frightened by the noise and commotion, that he started to run
away. But the magician seized him by the collar and gave him such a
box on the ear that he fell to the ground.
"What have I done, uncle," said the boy, trembling with fear, "to be
treated in such a manner?"
"I am your uncle," said the magician, "and I am in place of your
father. It is not your place to question me. But my child," he said,
softening his voice, "do not be afraid, for if you obey me punctually
you will reap the great advantages I intend for you. Under this stone
is hidden a treasure which shall be yours, and which will make you
richer than the greatest monarch in the world. No one but yourself can
lift the stone, and no one but yourself can enter the cave."
Aladdin, more and more amazed at what he said, forgot his fear and
anger, and rising, said, "Command me, uncle! I am ready to obey."
"That is right, my boy," said the magician embracing him. "Take hold
of the ring and lift the stone."
"But I am not strong enough," said Aladdin; "you must help me."
"If I help you, you can do nothing. Take hold of the ring and lift the
stone; it will come easily."
Aladdin, obeying, raised the stone with ease and laid it to one side.
Beneath it appeared a staircase leading to a door.
"Descend, my son," said the magician, "and open the door. It will lead
you into a wonderful palace, having three great halls. In each of
these you will see four large brass chests, full of gold and silver;
but take care you do not meddle with them. Before you enter the first
hall, be sure to tuck up your robe, wrap it about you, and then pass
through the second into the third without stopping. Above all things,
have a care that you do not touch the walls so much as with your
clothes; for if you do, you will die instantly. At the end of the
third hall, you will find a door which opens into a garden, planted
with fine trees loaded with fruit. Walk directly across the garden to
a terrace, where you will see a niche before you, and in that niche a
lighted lamp. Take the lamp down and put it out. When you have thrown
away the wick and poured out the liquor, put it in your waistband and
bring it to me. Do not be afraid that the liquor will spoil your
clothes, for it is not oil, and the lamp will be dry as soon as it is
After these words the magician drew a ring off his finger, and put it
on one of Aladdin's, saying, "This is a talisman against all evil, so
long as you obey me. Go, therefore, boldly, and we shall both be rich
all our lives."
[Illustration ALADDIN DESCENDED THE STEPS]
Aladdin descended the steps, and, opening the door, found the three
halls just as the African magician had described. He went through them
with all the precaution the fear of death could inspire, crossed the
garden without stopping, took down the lamp from the niche, threw out
the wick and the liquor, and, as the magician had desired, put it in
his waistband. But as he came down from the terrace, seeing it was
perfectly dry, he stopped in the garden to observe the trees, which
were loaded with extraordinary fruit of different colors. Some bore
fruit entirely white, and some clear and transparent as crystal; some
pale red, and others deeper; some green, blue and purple, and others
yellow; in short, there was fruit of all colors. The white were
pearls; the clear and transparent, diamonds; the red, rubies; the
green, emeralds; the blue, turquoises; the purple, amethysts; and the
yellow, sapphires, Aladdin, ignorant of their value, would have
preferred figs, or grapes, or pomegranates; but as he had his uncle's
permission, he resolved to gather some of every sort. Having filled
the two new purses his uncle had bought for him with his clothes, he
wrapped some up in the skirts of his vest, and crammed his bosom as
full as it could hold.
Aladdin, having thus loaded himself with riches of which he knew not
the value, returned cautiously through the three halls and arrived at
the mouth of the cave.
As soon as Aladdin saw the magician he cried, "Lend me your hand to
help me out."
"Give me the lamp first," replied the magician impatiently, "it will
be troublesome to you."
"Indeed, uncle," answered Aladdin, "I cannot, I will give it to you as
soon as I am up."
The African magician was determined to have the lamp before he would
help Aladdin out, and the latter, who had covered the lamp with the
fruits he had picked in the garden, could not well get at it till he
was out of the cave.
Provoked beyond reason by the boy's obstinacy, the magician flew into
a passion, threw a little of his incense into the fire, and pronounced
two magical words. Instantly the stone, which had closed the opening
to the staircase, moved into its place, and the earth covered it over
as smoothly as when the two companions had discovered it.
The truth was that the magician had learned of the existence of a
wonderful lamp, which he was not permitted to take himself, but which
he could use if it were given to him freely by some other person.
Accordingly, he had tried by a mixture of authority and persuasion to
get the lamp through Aladdin. When he saw that his attempt had failed,
he hurriedly left the country without returning to the town.
Aladdin, suddenly enveloped in darkness and deserted, knew that the
magician could not be his uncle, but must be some one who had evil
designs against him. Again and again he cried out that he was willing
to give up the lamp. All his cries were unavailing, and at last,
discouraged, he descended to the bottom of the steps, thinking to go
back into the palace. Now, however, he found the door closed, and
without hope of again seeing the light, he sat down on the bottom step
weeping in despair.
Finally his good teachings came to his aid, and he thought, "There is
help and power and strength in the High God; I will pray to him." So
he knelt and joined his hands in supplication.
In doing so, he happened to rub the ring which the magician had put
upon his finger, and immediately a genie of frightful aspect appeared.
"What wouldst thou?" said the genie. "I and the other slaves of the
ring serve him who wears it. I am ready to obey!"
At any other time, so hideous a figure as that of the genie would have
frightened Aladdin, but the danger was so great that he cried out to
the spirit, "Whoever thou art, deliver me from this place."
As soon as the words were uttered, Aladdin found himself on the very
spot where the magician had last left him, and no sign remained of
cave or opening.
After returning thanks to God for his deliverance, he hurried home,
and as soon as he had recovered from his weariness, he told his mother
what had happened.
Aladdin slept late the next morning, and when he wakened his first
words were a request for something to eat.
"Alas! child," said his mother, "I have no bread to give you.
Everything was eaten up yesterday. I have nothing but a little cotton
which I might sell."
"Keep your cotton, mother, till another time," said Aladdin. "I will
take the lamp which I got in the cave yesterday and try to sell it.
The money will buy us our dinner and perhaps our supper."
Aladdin's mother looked at the lamp and saw that it was very dirty.
"Perhaps it would bring more," she said, "if I should clean it."
Taking some water and sand, she began to rub the lamp, when in an
instant a genie of gigantic size and hideous appearance stood before
her and called out in a voice of thunder:
"What wouldst thou have? I and the other slaves of the lamp that is in
your hands are ready to obey thee."
Terrified at the sight of the genie, Aladdin's mother fainted, but
Aladdin, who had seen such an apparition before in the cave, snatched
the lamp from her hands and cried out, "I am hungry; bring me
something to eat."
The genie disappeared, but in a moment returned with a large silver
tray on which were twelve silver dishes, each containing the most
delicious viands; six large white cakes lay on two silver plates; two
silver flagons of wine, and two silver cups rested on the tray. All
this was placed upon the carpet before Aladdin, and then the genie
Aladdin's mother did not recover until he had sprinkled some water in
her face. As she returned to consciousness he said, "Be not afraid,
mother; arise and eat! Here is something to put you in heart, and at
the same time satisfy my hunger."
"Child," said the mother, as she looked upon the silver dishes and
smelled the savory odor from the food, "who has given us these
wonderful things? Has the sultan remembered us?"
"Never mind that," said Aladdin. "Let us sit down and eat. When we
have done, I will tell you."
As they ate, both looked at the dishes, but neither knew their value.
They were attracted more by the novelty than by the fact that they
were silver. They lingered long over their food, and after they had
eaten all they could, they found that enough was left for the whole of
the next day.
"Now," said the mother after she had put away the dishes and the
remnants of the feast, "tell me what happened while I was in the
What her son told her amazed her as much as the appearance of the
"What have we to do with genii?" said the mother, "and how came that
vile one to speak to me instead of to you, whom he had seen in the
"Mother," answered Aladdin, "the genie I saw in the cave was another,
the slave of the ring. The one you saw was a slave of the lamp."
"What!" cried his mother, "was it the lamp that caused that horrible
genie to speak to me instead of to you? Take the lamp out of my sight
and do with it what you please. If you take my advice, you will part
with the lamp and the ring too, and have nothing to do with genii,
who, as our Prophet has told us, are only devils."
"With your leave, mother," replied Aladdin, "I shall take care how I
sell a lamp which will be so serviceable to us. That stranger would
never have come to us for any reason but to get this lamp, and as we
came honestly by it, let us use it without making any great show and
exciting the envy and jealousy of our neighbors. However, since the
genie frightened you, I will hide the lamp where I can find it in case
I need it. The ring I will never part with, for without it I never
would have seen you again. Let me keep it, therefore, and wear it on
Aladdin's mother consented, but declared she would have no more to do
with genii, and would never mention the matter again. When their food
was all gone, Aladdin took one of the silver plates and sold it to an
old Jew, who gave him about a sixtieth of what it was worth. But even
then they were able to live upon the money for several days, and by
selling the other dishes, even at the same low figure, they were able
to live a long time.
When all the money was spent, Aladdin again took the lamp, found the
place where his mother had scrubbed it with sand, and rubbed it once
"What wouldst thou have?" said the genie, who came immediately, as
before. "I and the other slaves of the lamp that is in your hands are
ready to obey thee."
"I am hungry," replied Aladdin; "bring me something to eat."
Then for the second time the genie brought a tray and dishes of silver
loaded with appetizing food, all as fine and valuable as those of the
first gift. After the provisions were eaten, Aladdin started again to
the Jew with one of the plates. As he was passing a goldsmith's shop,
the latter said to him, "My lad, you must have something to sell to
the Jew, whom I have seen you visit so often. Now he is the greatest
of rogues. Let me see what you have, and I will give you all it is
worth, or I will direct you to other merchants who will not cheat
Aladdin pulled the plate from under his vest and showed it to the
"What does the Jew give you for such a plate?" said the goldsmith.
"I have sold him twelve such for a piece of gold each," replied
"What a villain!" said the goldsmith. "Let me show you how much the
Jew has cheated you."
The goldsmith weighed the plate and said, "This should bring you sixty
pieces of silver, and I am willing to pay you that for it now."
Aladdin thanked him for his fair dealing, and never again went to any
With such a thing as the lamp in their possession, you may well
believe that neither Aladdin nor his mother suffered for food or
clothing, but they were wise in the use of their treasure and lived
with as great frugality as before the lamp was found.
Aladdin, too, improved in his conduct, and spent the most of his time
among the merchants who sold gold, silver and fine clothing. Here at
one time he learned that the fruits that he had gathered in the garden
were not glass as he had supposed, but were precious jewels of
inestimable value. He took care, however, not to mention this fact to
any one, even his mother.
One day, as Aladdin was walking through the town, he heard a
proclamation that commanded the people to shut up their shops and
houses and stay within doors while the sultan's daughter, the Princess
Buddir al Buddoor, passed through the streets. Aladdin was instantly
inspired with curiosity to see the princess's face, and determined to
gratify his wish by concealing himself behind a door. As it happened,
the princess actually took off her veil just as she passed Aladdin,
and he was able to see her face clearly. She was indeed a noted
beauty. Her eyes were large, lively and sparkling; her smile
bewitching; her nose faultless; her mouth small; her lips vermilion.
It is not surprising, then, that Aladdin, who had never before seen
any one so beautiful, was both dazzled and enchanted.
After the princess had passed, he hurried home and told his mother his
adventure, concluding, "I love the princess more than I can express,
and am resolved to ask her in marriage of the sultan."
"Alas, child," said the mother. "What are you thinking of? You must be
mad to dream of such a thing."
"Far from it," replied Aladdin. "I am not mad, but in my right senses.
I knew you would reproach me, but I must tell you once more that I am
resolved to ask the princess in marriage, and I do not despair of
success. With the slaves of the ring and of the lamp to help me, how
can I fail? Moreover, I have another secret for you; those pieces of
glass which I took from the trees in that underground garden are
jewels of inestimable value, and fit for the greatest of monarchs.
There is nothing to be compared with mine for size or beauty. I am
sure that they will secure me the favor of the sultan. You have a
large porcelain dish fit to hold them; let us see how they will look
when we have arranged them by colors."
Aladdin's mother brought the dish, and Aladdin placed the jewels in it
according to his fancy. Their brightness and luster and great variety
of colors dazzled the eyes of both mother and son, who had never
before seen them thus together.
Aladdin's mother, fearing that he might be guilty of even greater
extravagance, promised to do as he wished, and early the next morning
she took the china dish in which the jewels had been arranged the day
before, wrapped it in two fine napkins, and set forth to the sultan's
palace, where the grand vizier, the other viziers, and the most
distinguished lords of the court were gathered. Despite the fact that
the crowd was great, she got into the divan, a spacious hall with a
magnificent entrance, and placed herself before the sultan and the
great lords who sat with him in council. After several causes had been
called, pleaded and adjudged according to their order, the divan broke
up, and the sultan, rising, returned to his apartment, accompanied by
all the high officials.
Aladdin's mother, thinking rightly that the sultan would not appear
again that day, hurried back to her home, where she said to Aladdin
with much simplicity, "Son, I have seen the sultan, and am very well
persuaded he has seen me, too, for I placed myself just before him;
but he was so much taken up with those who attended on all sides of
him that I pitied him, and wondered at his patience. At last I believe
he was heartily tired, for he rose up suddenly, and would not hear a
great many who were ready prepared to speak to him, but went away, at
which I was well pleased, for indeed I began to lose all patience, and
was extremely fatigued with staying so long. But there is no harm
done; I will go again; perhaps the sultan may not be so busy."
She went six times afterward on the days appointed, and placed herself
always directly before the sultan, but with as little success as the
On the sixth day, however, after the divan was broken up, when the
sultan returned to his own apartment, he said to his grand vizier: "I
have for some time observed a certain woman, who attends constantly
every day that I give audience, with something wrapped up in a napkin;
she always stands from the beginning to the breaking up of the
audience, and affects to place herself just before me. If this woman
comes to our next audience, do not fail to call her, that I may hear
what she has to say." The grand vizier made answer by lowering his
hand, and then lifting it up above his head, signifying his
willingness to lose it if he failed.
On the next audience day, when Aladdin's mother went to the divan, and
placed herself in front of the sultan as usual, the grand vizier
immediately called the chief of the mace-bearers, and pointing to her
bade him bring her before the sultan. The old woman at once followed
the mace-bearer, and when she reached the sultan bowed her head down
to the carpet which covered the platform, of the throne, and remained
in that posture until he bade her rise, which she had no sooner done,
than he said to her, "Good woman, I have observed you to stand many
days from the beginning to the rising of the divan; what business
brings you here?"
After these words, Aladdin's mother prostrated herself a second time;
and when she arose, said, "Monarch of monarchs, I beg of you to pardon
the boldness of my petition, and to assure me of your pardon and
"Well," replied the sultan, "I will forgive you, be it what it may,
and no hurt shall come to you; speak boldly."
Then Aladdin's mother told the sultan faithfully the errand on which
her son had sent her.
The sultan hearkened to her discourse without showing any anger; but
before he answered her, he asked her what she had brought tied in the
napkin. Thereupon she uncovered the china dish and presented it to the
sultan. His amazement and surprise were inexpressible, and for some
time he remained lost in admiration. At last, however, he took the
present from the hand of Aladdin's mother, saying, "How rich! how
Having handled all the jewels, one after another, he turned to the
grand vizier and said, "Behold, admire, wonder! and confess that your
eyes never beheld jewels so rich and beautiful before." The vizier was
charmed, and the sultan continued, "What sayest thou to such a
present? Is it not worthy of the princess, my daughter? And ought I
not to be willing to give her to one who values her at so great a
"I cannot but own," replied the vizier, "that the present is worthy
the princess, but I beg your majesty to grant me three months before
you decide. I hope before that time that my son, whom you have looked
upon with favor heretofore, will be able to make you a nobler present
than this of the stranger, Aladdin."
"Good woman," said the sultan, turning to Aladdin's mother, "go home
and tell your son that I agree to the proposal you made, but I cannot
marry the princess, my daughter, for three months. At the expiration
of that time come again."
Aladdin thought himself the most happy of men when he heard this news,
and began to count every week, day, and even hour that passed, so
great was his impatience. One evening, when two of the three months
had gone, his mother went out to buy some oil, and found a general
festival--the houses dressed with foliage, silks and carpeting, and
every one joining in a great rejoicing. The officers, in showy
uniforms, on richly caparisoned horses, galloped about the streets.
"What is the meaning of all this preparation for public festivity?"
said Aladdin's mother to the oil merchant.
"Where have you been, good woman," answered he, "that you do not know
that the son of the grand vizier is to marry the Princess Buddir al
Buddoor to-night? These officers are to assist at the palace, where
the ceremony is to be solemnized."
Hearing this news, Aladdin's mother ran home very quickly. "Child,"
she cried, "you are undone. The sultan's fine promises have come to
nought. This night the grand vizier's son is to marry the Princess
Buddir al Buddoor."
For a moment Aladdin was thunderstruck, but then he bethought himself
of the lamp and summoned the genie, resolved if possible to prevent
"What wouldst thou have?" said the genie. "I and the other slaves of
the lamp that is in thy hands are ready to obey thee."
"Hear me," said Aladdin. "You have hitherto obeyed me; this is a
harder task. The sultan's daughter, who was promised me as my bride,
is this night married to the son of the grand vizier. Bring them both
hither to me as soon as they have retired to their chamber."
"Master," replied the genie, "I obey thee."
Aladdin supped with his mother as usual and then went to his own
apartment to await the return of the genie.
In the meantime the festivities in honor of the princess's marriage
were conducted at the sultan's palace with great magnificence. When
the ceremonies were concluded, the princess and her husband retired to
the chamber prepared for them. But no sooner had they lain down than
the genie, the faithful slave of the lamp, to the great amazement and
alarm of both the bride and the groom, took up the bed and in an
instant transported them all to the chamber of Aladdin.
"Remove the bridegroom," said Aladdin to the genie, "and keep him a
prisoner till to-morrow morning; then return with him here."
When Aladdin was left alone with the princess, he tried to quiet her
fears and to explain to her the treachery practiced upon him by the
sultan. Then, drawing his scimitar, he laid it down between them to
show her that he would treat her with the utmost possible respect, and
secure her safety.
At break of day, the genie appeared bringing back the bridegroom, whom
he had entranced and left motionless outside the door of Aladdin's
chamber during the night. By Aladdin's command the couch with the
bride and groom was transported into the sultan's palace. A moment
after the genie had set the couch down in the chamber of the palace,
the sultan came to the door to offer his good wishes to his daughter.
The grand vizier's son, who had almost perished from cold by standing
in his thin undergarment all night, hurried to the robing chamber and
Having opened the door, the sultan went to the bedside, kissed the
princess on the forehead, and was greatly surprised to find her
apparently in the greatest affliction. He left the room in a few
moments and hurried to the apartments of the sultaness, whom he told
of the princess's melancholy.
"Sire," said the sultaness, "I will go and see her; she will not
receive me in the same manner."
Nevertheless, the princess received the sultaness with sighs and
tears, but after some persuasion she told her mother all that had
happened during the night. The sultaness urged her to say nothing
about it, as no one would believe so strange a tale. Naturally the
grand vizier's son, proud of being the sultan's son-in-law, was more
than willing to keep silence.
The next night everything happened precisely as it had on the
preceding night, but the second morning the princess told the sultan
everything she had told her mother. On hearing this strange piece of
news he summoned the grand vizier and declared the marriage canceled,
for he feared even worse treatment from the invisible agency which had
troubled the young couple.
Everybody was astonished at the sultan's change of mind, but no one
except Aladdin knew the cause, and he kept profound silence.
On the very day that the three months expired, Aladdin's mother went
again to the divan and stood in the same place. The sultan knew her
and directed her to be brought before him.
Having prostrated herself before him, she said, "Sire, I come at the
end of three months to ask of you the fulfilment of the promise you
have made to my son."
The sultan had not thought that the request of Aladdin's mother was
made seriously, so he consulted with the vizier, who suggested that
the sultan should not refuse Aladdin's request, but should attach such
conditions to the marriage as would be impossible for Aladdin to
"Good woman," said the sultan after he had made his decision, "sultans
ought to abide by their word, and I will keep mine by making your son
happy in marriage with the princess, my daughter. But I cannot marry
her without some further proof that your son is able to support her in
royal state. Tell him then that I will fulfill my promise when he
sends me forty trays of massy gold filled with jewels such as those he
has given me already, each tray borne by a black slave, who shall be
led by a young and handsome white slave, all dressed magnificently. Go
and tell your son what I say. I will wait for his answer."
"Where," said she on her way home, "can Aladdin get so many large gold
trays and such precious stones to fill them? He will not be much
pleased with my errand this time."
When she came home, she told Aladdin the whole story and added,
laughing, "The sultan expects your answer immediately. I believe he
will have to wait long enough."
"Not so long, mother, as you imagine," replied Aladdin. "This demand
is a mere trifle. I will prepare at once to satisfy his request."
In a very short time after Aladdin had retired to his apartment and
conversed again with the genie of the lamp, a train of forty black
slaves led by the same number of white slaves appeared opposite the
house in which Aladdin lived. Each black slave carried on his head a
basin of massy gold, full of pearls, diamonds, rubies, and emeralds.
"Mother," said Aladdin, "pray lose no time; before the sultan and his
divan rise, be there with this present as the dowry demanded for the
princess, so that he may know how diligent and exact I am, and how
sincere I am in wishing the honor of this alliance." As soon as this
magnificent procession, with Aladdin's mother at its head, had begun
to march from Aladdin's house, the whole city was filled with the
crowds of people desirous to see so grand a sight. The graceful
bearing, elegant form, and wonderful likeness of the slaves; their
grave walk at an equal distance from each other, the luster of their
jeweled girdles, and the brilliancy of the aigrettes of precious
stones in their turbans, excited the greatest admiration in the
spectators. As they had to pass through several streets to the palace,
the whole length of the way was lined with files of spectators.
Nothing, indeed, was ever seen so beautiful and brilliant in the
sultan's palace, and the richest robes of the emirs of his court were
not to be compared to the costly dresses of these slaves, whom they
supposed to be kings.
As the sultan, who had been informed of their approach, had given
orders for them to be admitted, they met with no obstacle, but went
into the divan in regular order, one part turning to the right and the
other to the left. After they were all entered, and had formed a
semicircle before the sultan's throne, the black slaves laid the
golden trays on the carpet, prostrated themselves, touching the carpet
with their foreheads, and at the same time the white slaves did
likewise. When they rose, the black slaves uncovered the trays, and
then all stood with their arms crossed over their breasts.
In the meantime, Aladdin's mother advanced to the foot of the throne,
and having prostrated herself, said to the sultan, "Sire, my son knows
this present is much below the notice of Princess Buddir al Buddoor;
but hopes, nevertheless, that your majesty will accept of it, and make
it agreeable to the princess, and with the greater confidence since he
has endeavored to conform to the conditions you were pleased to
The sultan, overpowered at the sight of such more than royal
magnificence, replied without hesitation to the words of Aladdin's
mother: "Go and tell your son that I wait with open arms to embrace
him; and the more haste he makes to come and receive the princess my
daughter from my hands, the greater pleasure he will do me."
As soon as Aladdin's mother had retired, the sultan put an end to the
audience; and rising from his throne ordered that the princess's
attendants should come and carry the trays into their mistress's
apartment, whither he went himself to examine them with her at his
leisure. The fourscore slaves were conducted into the palace; and the
sultan, telling the princess of their magnificent apparel, ordered
them to be brought before her apartment, that she might see through
the lattices he had not exaggerated in his account of them.
In the meantime Aladdin's mother reached home, and showed in her air
and countenance the good news she brought to her son.
"My son," said she, "you may rejoice, for you are arrived at the
height of your desires. The sultan has declared that you shall marry
the Princess Buddir al Buddoor. He waits for you with impatience."
Aladdin, delighted with this news, said little, but hurried into his
chamber. Here he rubbed his lamp, and the obedient genie appeared.
"Genie," said Aladdin, "convey me at once to a bath, and supply me
with the richest and most magnificent robe ever worn by a monarch."
No sooner were the words out of his mouth than the genie, making
Aladdin as well as himself invisible, took the latter into an elegant
marble bath, where the youth was well rubbed and washed with scented
waters. When he came out from the bath, his skin was as clear as that
of a child, and his body lightsome and free.
When the bath was finished, Aladdin found before him a robe, the
magnificence of which astonished him. By the genie's aid he put on the
robe, and was returned to his chamber.
"Have you any further command?" asked the genie.
"Yes," answered Aladdin, "bring me a charger that surpasses in
goodness and beauty the best in the sultan's stable. Give him a rich
saddle and bridle, and other caparisons to correspond with his value.
Furnish me with twenty slaves, as richly clothed as those who carried
the present to the sultan, to walk by my side and to follow me, and
twenty more to go before me in two ranks. Bring my mother six women
slaves to attend her, all dressed as richly as any slave of the
Princess Buddir al Buddoor, each slave carrying a complete dress fit
for any sultaness. I want also ten thousand pieces of gold in ten
purses; go, and make haste."
The genie executed all these difficult commands in a moment. Then
Aladdin, taking the women slaves, each carrying on her head a
beautiful dress wrapped in a piece of silver tissue, presented them to
his mother, saying that the dresses were brought for her use. Of the
ten purses, Aladdin gave his mother four. The other six he left in the
hands of the slaves who brought them, telling them to throw the money
by handfuls among the people as the procession went to the sultan's
When Aladdin had thus prepared himself for his first interview with
the sultan, he dismissed the genie, and immediately mounting his
charger, began his march, and though he never had been on horseback
before, appeared with a grace the most experienced horseman might
envy. The innumerable concourse of people through whom he passed made
the air echo with their acclamations, especially every time the six
slaves who carried the purses threw handfuls of gold among the
On Aladdin's arrival at the palace, the sultan was surprised to find
him more richly and magnificently robed than he had ever been himself,
and was impressed with his good looks and dignity of manner, which
were so different from what he expected in the son of one so humble as
Aladdin's mother. He embraced him with demonstrations of joy, and when
Aladdin would have fallen at his feet, held him by the hand, and made
him sit near his throne. He shortly after led him, amidst the sounds
of trumpets, haut-boys, and all kinds of music, to a magnificent
entertainment, at which the sultan and Aladdin ate by themselves, and
the great lords of the court, according to their rank and dignity, sat
at different tables.
After the feast, the sultan sent for the chief cadi, and commanded him
to draw up a contract of marriage between the Princess Buddir al
Buddoor and Aladdin. When the contract had been drawn, the sultan
asked Aladdin if he would stay in the palace and complete the
ceremonies of the marriage that day.
[Illustration: "GENIE, BUILD ME A PALACE"]
"Sire," said Aladdin, "though great is my impatience to enter on the
honor granted me by your majesty, yet I beg you to permit me first to
build a palace worthy to receive the princess your daughter. I pray
you to grant me sufficient ground near your palace, and I will have it
completed with the utmost expedition." The sultan granted Aladdin his
request, and again embraced him. After which Aladdin took his leave
with as much politeness as if he had been bred up and had always lived
Aladdin returned home in the order he had come, amidst the
acclamations of the people, who wished him all happiness and
prosperity. When Aladdin entered his room, he took down the lamp,
rubbed it, and when the genie appeared as usual, said, "Genie, build
me a palace fit to receive the Princess Buddir al Buddoor. Let it be
made of nothing less than porphyry, jasper, agate, lapis lazuli, and
the finest marble. Let its walls be massive gold and silver brick laid
alternately. Let each front contain six windows, and let the lattices
of these, excepting one, which must be left unfinished, all sparkle
with diamonds, rubies and emeralds. Let there be an inner and an outer
court in front of the palace, and a spacious garden; provide a safe
treasure-house, and fill it with gold and silver. Let there be also
kitchens and storehouses, stables full of the finest horses, with
their equerries and grooms, and hunting equipage, officer, attendants,
and slaves, both men and women, for the princess and myself. Go and
execute my wishes."
As Aladdin gave these commands to the genie, the sun was setting. It
was morning when the genie returned and transported Aladdin in a
moment to the palace he had made. The genie led Aladdin through all
the apartments, where were officers and slaves, clothed according to
their rank. The treasury was opened by a treasurer, and there Aladdin
saw large vases of different sizes ranged around the chambers, and all
filled to the top with money. In the stables were some of the finest
horses in the world, and the grooms were busy dressing them. In the
storehouses was everything necessary, both for food and ornament.
Aladdin examined every portion of the palace, and particularly the
hall with the four and twenty windows, which far exceeded his fond
"Genie," he said, "everything is as I wished. Only one thing now is
lacking. Lay immediately a fine carpet for the princess to walk upon
from the sultan's palace to mine."
In an instant the carpet was laid, and the genie disappeared.
When the sultan's porters came to open the gates the next morning,
they were amazed to find what had been an unoccupied garden filled
with a magnificent palace. They ran with the strange tidings to the
grand vizier, who hastened to the sultan.
"It must be the palace," said the sultan, "which I gave Aladdin
permission to build for my daughter. He has wished to let us see what
wonders can be done in a single night."
In the meantime Aladdin had sent his mother to the Princess Buddir al
Buddoor to tell her that the palace would be ready for her reception
in the evening. While the mother, attended by her women slaves, was in
the apartments of the princess, the sultan himself came in and was
surprised to find the woman whom he had seen in such humble guise at
his divan, now more richly appareled than his own daughter. Aladdin,
too, rose in the opinion of the monarch, because the young man had
shared his wealth and honors with his mother.
Shortly after his mother's departure, Aladdin mounted his horse, and
attended by his magnificent retinue, left the paternal home forever.
With him he took, you may be sure, the wonderful lamp to which he owed
all his good fortune, and the ring which had been given him as a
That night the sultan entertained Aladdin with the greatest
magnificence, and at the conclusion of the marriage ceremony the
princess took leave of her father. Bands of music, followed by a
hundred stately ushers and a hundred black mutes in two files, with
their officers at their head, led the procession. Four hundred of the
sultan's young pages carried torches on each side, which together with
the illumination of the two palaces made the night as light as day.
Thus the princess, accompanied also by Aladdin's mother, walked along
the carpet which was spread to the palace of her husband. There
Aladdin was ready to receive her, and to lead her into a large hall
lighted with an infinite number of wax candles.
A feast consisting of the most delicate viands was then served upon
dishes of massy gold. Plates, basins, goblets, were all of the most
The princess, dazzled by such brilliancy, said to Aladdin, "I thought,
prince, that nothing in the world was so beautiful as my father's
palace; but the sight of this hall shows me how much I was deceived."
The next morning Aladdin's attendants brought him another habit, as
rich and magnificent as that worn the day before. He then ordered one
of the horses to be got ready for him; mounted it, and went, in the
midst of a large body of slaves, to invite the sultan and the lords of
his court to attend a banquet. To this the sultan gave immediate
consent, and rising at once, accompanied Aladdin to his palace. Every
step of the way the sultan's admiration increased; but when he entered
the hall and saw the windows enriched with such large and perfect
diamonds, rubies and emeralds, he was more than ever astonished.
"This palace is one of the wonders of the world, my son; but what most
surprises me is that one of the windows of this magnificent hall
should be left incomplete and unfinished."
"Sire," answered Aladdin, "the omission was intentional, as I wished
that you might have the glory of finishing the hall."
"I appreciate your kindness," said the sultan, "and will give orders
about it immediately."
After the banquet the sultan summoned his jewelers and goldsmiths, and
showed them the unfinished window. "I sent for you," said he, "to fit
up this window in as great perfection as the rest. Examine them well
and make all the haste you can."
The jewelers and goldsmiths examined the three and twenty windows, and
after they had consulted to know what each could furnish, they
returned to the sultan.
The principal jeweler, speaking for the rest, said: "Sire, we are
willing to do our best to obey you, but among us all we cannot furnish
jewels enough for so great a work."
"I have more than are necessary," said the sultan. "Come to my palace
and choose what you need." Thereupon the sultan returned to his palace
and ordered his jewels to be brought out, particularly those Aladdin
had given him. The jewelers selected a great quantity and began their
work. Many times more they came back for jewels, and in a month's
time, though they had used everything the sultan had, and borrowed of
the vizier, their work was not half done.
Aladdin, who was now satisfied that the jewelers and goldsmiths saw
that they could not possibly do the work, ordered them to undo what
they had begun, and to return all the jewels to the sultan and the
It took them but a few hours to undo what they had been a month in
accomplishing. When Aladdin was left alone in the hall, after the
workmen had gone to the sultan, he took the lamp which he carried
about him and rubbed it till the genie appeared.
"Genie," said Aladdin, "I ordered you to leave one of the four and
twenty windows of this hall imperfect, and you executed my command
punctually. Now make it like the rest."
The genie immediately disappeared, and a few moments after, the window
appeared like all the rest.
In the meantime the jewelers and the goldsmiths were introduced into
the sultan's presence, and returned to him the jewels they had brought
back. The sultan asked if Aladdin had given any reason for returning
the stones, and when he was told that Aladdin had sent no message, he
was much disturbed, and had one of his horses saddled and rode at once
to Aladdin's palace. Aladdin came to the gate, and without replying to
the sultan's inquiries led him to the grand hall, and showed him the
once imperfect window now corresponding exactly to the others. The
Sultan could not at first believe what he saw, and would not admit
until he had examined every one of the four and twenty windows. When
at last he was satisfied, he embraced his son-in-law and kissed him
between the eyes.
"My son," said he, "what a wonderful man you are to do such surprising
things in the twinkling of an eye. There is none such as you in the
world; the more I know you, the more I admire you."
Aladdin lived in happiness, but did not confine himself within his
palace. When he went about the streets he traveled in much state,
sometimes to one mosque and sometimes to another, or at times to visit
the principal lords of the court. Every time he went out, he caused
two slaves to walk beside his horse and throw handfuls of money to the
people as he passed through the streets and squares. In this way
Aladdin secured the respect and esteem of the populace.
Several years passed quietly. It then happened that one day the
African magician remembered Aladdin, and entered into a long series of
magical ceremonies to determine whether Aladdin had perished in the
subterranean cavern. Imagine his surprise when he learned by means of
his horoscope that Aladdin, instead of dying in the cave, had made his
escape and was living in royal splendor by the aid of the genie of the
lamp. The very next morning the magician set out with great haste for
the capital of China, and on his arrival there he took lodging in a
khan. He heard much there about the wealth, charities, happiness and
splendid palace of the Prince Aladdin, and his knowledge of magic
showed him that only by genii alone could such wonders have been
[Illustration: NEW LAMPS FOR OLD]
Piqued and angered by Aladdin's success, the magician returned to his
khan, and by magic undertook to find where Aladdin kept the lamp.
Great was his joy when he discovered that the lamp was kept in the
"Well," said he, rubbing his hands in glee, "I shall soon have the
lamp again, and will put Aladdin back to his original mean position."
The next day he learned that Aladdin had gone on a hunting expedition
that was to last eight days, and that but three of the days had
expired. Consequently the magician began at once to carry out his
plans. He went to a coppersmith and asked for a dozen copper lamps.
The master of the shop did not have so many by him, but said that if
the magician would call the next day, he would have them ready and
Early the next day the magician called, and found the twelve lamps
awaiting him. Paying the man the full price demanded, he put the lamps
into a basket hanging on his arm, and started for Aladdin's palace. On
the way he began to cry out, "Who will exchange old lamps for new
As he went along, a crowd of children and idle people followed
hooting, for all thought him a madman or a fool to offer to exchange
new lamps for old ones. The sorcerer regarded not their scoffs,
hooting, or anything they could say, but continued to cry shrilly,
"Who will exchange old lamps for new ones?"
When he reached the palace he walked back and forth in front of it.
The crowds kept increasing every moment, and his voice became more and
more shrill. At last the princess heard the noise and commotion, and
looking from one of the four and twenty windows, sent a slave to find
out what the crowd meant and what the man was saying.
"Madam," answered the slave, who soon returned laughing, "every one
laughs to see an old man carrying on his arm a basket full of fine new
lamps, and asking to exchange them for old ones. The children and mob
crowd about him so that the old man can hardly stir, and make all the
noise they can in derision of him."
"Now you speak of lamps," replied another female slave, "I know not
whether the princess has observed it, but there is an old lamp in
Prince Aladdin's robing room; whoever owns it will not be sorry to
change it for a new one. If the princess wishes, she may find out if
this old man is as silly as he appears to be, and will give a new lamp
for an old one without expecting anything in addition."
The princess, who knew not the value of the lamp nor Aladdin's
interest in it, entered into the amusement and ordered the slave to
make the exchange. No sooner had the slave reached the gates of the
palace than the magician snatched the lamp eagerly, and thrusting it
as far as he could into his breast, offered the slave his basket, and
bade her choose the lamp she liked best. The slave picked out a
handsome one and carried it to the princess, while the children
crowded around, deriding the magician's folly.
The African magician cried "New lamps for old ones" no more, but made
the best of his way from the palace through unfrequented streets and
having no use for lamps or basket, set them down where nobody saw
them, and after dodging about among the short and crooked streets,
hurried through the city gates and out into the country.
Having reached a lonely spot, he stopped till the darkness of the
night gave him the opportunity of carrying out his design. Then he
drew out the lamp and rubbed it. At that summons the genie appeared to
him as he had to Aladdin and said, "What wouldst thou have? I and the
other slaves of the lamp that is in your hands are ready to obey
"I command thee," replied the magician, "to transport me immediately
to Africa, and with us take Aladdin's palace and all the people in
The genie made no reply, but with the assistance of his fellows the
slave of the lamp transported the magician and the palace and every
one in it to that spot in Egypt where the sorcerer wished to be.
Early the next morning when the sultan, according to custom, went to
admire Aladdin's palace, his amazement was unbounded to find that it
could nowhere be seen. He could not understand how so large a palace,
which he had seen plainly every day for some years, should vanish so
soon and not leave the least trace behind. In his perplexity he sent
for his grand vizier.
That official, who in secret bore no good will to Aladdin, intimated
his suspicion that the palace was built by magic, and that Aladdin had
made this hunting expedition an excuse for the removal of his palace.
The sultan sent a detachment of his guard to arrest Aladdin as a
prisoner of state.
The vizier's plan was carried out, and Aladdin would have been put to
death had not the people, whose affection he had earned by his
generosity, urged the sultan to grant him life. As soon as Aladdin had
gained his liberty, he addressed the sultan as follows:
"Sire, I pray you to let me know the crime by which I have thus lost
the favor of your countenance."
"Your crime," answered the sultan, "wretched man! do you not know it?
Follow me and I will show you."
The sultan then took Aladdin into the apartment from whence his son-
in-law's palace could best be seen, and said, "You ought to know where
your palace stood; look from mine and tell me where it has gone."
Aladdin looked, and, utterly amazed, stood speechless. After
recovering himself, he said, "It is true I do not see the palace, but
I was not concerned in its removal. I beg you to give me forty days,
and if in that time I cannot restore the palace, I will offer my head
to be disposed of at your pleasure."
"I grant your petition," said the sultan, "but remember, at the end of
forty days to present yourself before me."
Exceedingly humiliated, Aladdin went out of the sultan's palace, and
the lords, who had courted him in his days of splendor, now refused to
have any communication with him.
For three days he wandered about the city, exciting the wonder and
compassion of the multitude by asking everybody he met if they had
seen his palace, or could tell him anything of it. On the third day he
wandered into the country, where he fell down the bank of a river in
such a way, that while he was attempting to hold himself, he rubbed
the ring which the magician had given him.
Instantly the same genie that he had seen in the cave appeared before
him and said, "What wouldst thou? I and the other slaves of the ring
serve him who wears it. I am ready to obey."
Aladdin, surprised at the offer of help so little expected, replied,
"Genie, show me where the palace I caused to be built now stands, or
transport it back to where it first stood." "Your command," answered
the genie, "is not wholly in my power. I am the slave of the ring, not
of the lamp."
[Illustration: ALADDIN SALUTED THE PRINCESS JOYFULLY]
"I command thee, then," continued Aladdin, "by the power of the ring,
to transport me to the spot where my palace stands, in whatsoever part
of the world it be."
These words were no sooner out of his mouth than Aladdin found himself
before his own palace in the midst of a large plain, at no great
distance from a city. Indeed, he was placed exactly under the window
of the princess's apartment.
Now it so happened that a moment later one of the attendants of the
Princess Buddir al Buddoor, looking through the window, saw Aladdin,
and reported the fact to her mistress at once. The princess, scarcely
believing the joyful tidings, hastened to the window, and seeing
Aladdin, opened the window. The noise attracted Aladdin's attention so
that he turned his head, and seeing the princess, saluted her
"I have sent to have the private chamber opened for you," she said;
"enter and come up."
A few moments later, the happy couple were united in the princess's
chamber. It is impossible to describe the joy they felt at seeing each
other after so long a separation. After embracing each other and
weeping for joy, they sat down, and Aladdin said, "I beg you, my
princess, tell me what has become of an old lamp which stood upon the
shelf of my robing chamber?"
"Alas!" answered the princess, "I was afraid our misfortune might be
owing to that lamp, and what grieves me most is that I was the cause
of it. I was foolish enough to change the lamp for a new one, and the
next morning I found myself in this unknown country, which I am told
"Princess," interrupted Aladdin, "you have explained everything by
telling me we are in Africa. Can you tell me where the old lamp now
"The African magician carries it carefully wrapped up in his bosom,"
replied the princess. "I can assure you of this, because he pulled it
out and showed it to me one time."
"My princess," said Aladdin, "I think I can regain possession of the
lamp and deliver you. But to execute this design, I must go to the
town. I shall return by noon and will then tell you what to do. In the
meantime I shall disguise myself, and I beg that the private door may
be opened at my first knock."
When Aladdin came out of the palace, he saw a peasant going into the
country and hastened after him. After some persuasion the peasant
agreed to change clothes with Aladdin, and the latter entered the city
in disguise. Here, after traversing several streets, he entered one of
the largest and best drug stores, and asked the druggist if he had a
The druggist, noticing Aladdin's poor clothing, said, "I have the
powder, but it is very costly."
Aladdin, understanding the druggist's insinuation, drew out his purse,
showed him some gold, and asked for a half a dram of the powder, which
was weighed and passed over. Aladdin gave the druggist a gold piece
and hastened back to the palace which he entered by the private door.
"Princess," he said, as he came into her apartment, "you must carry
out your part in this scheme for our deliverance. Overcome your
aversion for the magician; assume a friendly manner, and invite him to
an entertainment in your apartment. Before he leaves, ask him to
exchange cups with you. Gratified at the honor you do him, he will
gladly exchange, when you must hand him the cup into which I place
this powder. On drinking it he will fall instantly asleep, and we
shall obtain the lamp with its slaves, who will restore us and the
palace to the capital of China."
The princess obeyed her husband's instructions, and the next night at
the entertainment, when the magician drank the glass out of compliment
to the princess, he fell back lifeless on the sofa. Anticipating
success, she had arranged it so that the moment the magician fell
senseless, Aladdin should be admitted to her apartment.
The princess arose from her seat and ran overjoyed to embrace her
husband, but he stopped her, saying, "Princess, retire to your own
room and leave me alone while I try to transport you back to China as
speedily as you were brought hither."
When everybody had withdrawn, Aladdin shut the door and went directly
to the body of the magician, opened his vest, took out the lamp,
unwrapped it carefully, and rubbed it as of old. The genie immediately
"Genie," said Aladdin, "I command thee to transport the palace
instantly back to the place from which it was brought."
Everything happened as Aladdin commanded, and the removal was felt
only by two little shocks: one when the palace was lifted up, and the
other when it was set down, and both in a very short interval of time.
The next morning the sultan, looking out of his window, and mourning
over the fate of his daughter, was astonished to see the vacant place
again filled up with his son-in-law's palace. Joy and gladness
succeeded to sorrow and grief. Ordering a horse to be saddled, he
mounted it that instant, but could not make haste enough to satisfy
That morning Aladdin rose at daybreak, put on one of his most
magnificent habits and walked out into the hall of the four and twenty
windows, from whence he saw the sultan approaching, and hastened down
to assist his ruler in dismounting.
He conducted the sultan directly to the princess's apartment, and the
happy father and his daughter embraced each other with tears of joy.
For a short interval they were engaged in mutual explanations, and the
sultan said, "My son, be not displeased at my proceedings against you;
they arose from my paternal love, and therefore, you ought to forgive
any harshness that I may have shown."
"Sire, I have not the least reason to complain of your conduct, since
that infamous magician, the basest of men, was the sole cause of my
misfortune," replied Aladdin.
Now the African magician, who had thus been twice foiled in his
endeavor to ruin Aladdin, had a younger brother who was as skilful a
magician, and who exceeded him in wickedness and hatred of mankind.
For many years they had been under an agreement to communicate with
each other once a year, no matter how widely separated they might be.
The younger brother, not having received his usual annual
communication, cast a horoscope to find out what was amiss, and
discovered that his brother had been poisoned, and that the poisoner,
though a person of mean birth, was married to a princess, a sultan's
daughter, and lived in the capital of the kingdom of China. This
discovery caused the younger brother to resolve upon immediate
revenge, and he set out across plains, rivers, mountains and deserts
for China. After incredible fatigue, he reached the capital city, and
there he took lodging at a khan. Here by his magic powers he found
that Aladdin was the person who caused the death of his brother. At
that time the city was talking about the wonderful miracles of a woman
called Fatima, who had retired from the world to a little cell, where
she performed marvelous cures.
Thinking this woman might be serviceable to him in the project he had
conceived, the magician inquired minutely about the holy woman.
"What!" said the person whom he asked, "have you never seen nor heard
of her? The whole town admires her for her fasting, her austerities
and her exemplary life. Excepting Mondays and Fridays, she never stirs
out of her little cell. When she does come forth into the town, she
does an infinite amount of good, healing men of all kinds of diseases
by simply placing her hand upon them." That very night the wicked
magician went to the hermitage of the holy woman and stabbed her to
death. Then in the morning he dyed his face the same hue as hers, put
on her garb, covered his face with her veil, drew her large belt about
his waist, and taking his stick, went to the palace of Aladdin.
The people gathered about this holy woman, as they imagined the
magician to be, in a great crowd. Some begged his blessing, others
kissed his hand, while others, more reserved, touched only the hem of
his garment; still others, suffering from disease, stooped for him to
lay his hands upon them. The magician, muttering some words in the
form of a prayer, did continually as he was asked, counterfeiting so
well that no one suspected he was not the holy woman.
Finally he came before the square of the palace. The crowd and the
noise was so great that the princess, who was in the hall of the four
and twenty windows, heard it and asked what was the matter. One of her
women told her that it was a great crowd of people collected about the
holy woman, to be cured by the laying on of her hands.
The princess, who had long heard of this holy woman, desired to have
some conversation with her, and sent her chief officer to bring Fatima
to her apartment.
The crowd parted before the attendants from the palace, and the
magician, seeing that they were coming to him, advanced to meet them,
overjoyed that his plot was succeeding so well.
"Holy woman," said one of the attendants, "the princess wishes to see
you, and has sent us for you."
"The princess does me too great an honor," replied Fatima; "I am ready
to obey her command."
When the pretended Fatima had made her obeisance, the princess said,
"My good mother, I have one thing to request, which you must not
refuse me. Stay with me that you may edify me with your way of living,
and that I may learn from your good example."
"Princess," said the counterfeit Fatima, "I beg of you not to ask me
what I cannot consent to without neglecting my prayers and devotions."
"That shall be no hindrance to you," answered the princess. "I have a
great many unoccupied apartments. Choose whichever you wish, and you
may have as much liberty to perform your devotions as if you were in
your own cell."
The magician, who really desired nothing more than an introduction
into the palace, where he could easily execute his designs, soon
allowed himself to be persuaded to accept the offer which the princess
had made him.
Then the princess, rising, said, "Come with me; I will show you what
vacant apartments I have, that you may choose what you like best." The
magician followed, and after looking at all, chose the worst one,
saying that it was too good for him and that he accepted it only to
Afterward the princess would have brought him back into the great hall
to dine with her, but he, knowing he would have to show his face,
which he had all this time concealed under Fatima's veil, begged her
to excuse him, saying that he never ate anything but bread and dried
fruits, and desiring to eat that slightest repast in his own
"You are as free here, good mother, as if you were in your own cell. I
will order you a dinner, but remember, I expect you as soon as you
After the princess had dined, the false Fatima was again brought
"My good mother," said the princess, "I am overjoyed to have so holy a
woman as yourself confer, by your presence, a blessing upon this
palace. Now that I am speaking of the palace, pray how do you like it?
Tell me first what you think of this hall."
The counterfeit Fatima, surveying the palace from one end to the
other, said: "As far as such a solitary being as myself, who am
unacquainted with what the world calls beautiful, can judge, this hall
is truly admirable; there wants but one thing."
"What is that, good mother?" demanded the princess. "Tell me, I
conjure you. I have always believed and heard that it lacked nothing,
but if it does, the want shall be supplied."
"Princess," said the false Fatima with great dissimulation, "forgive
the liberty I take, but in my opinion, if it is of any importance, if
a roc's egg were hung up in the middle of the dome, this hall would
have no parallel in the four quarters of the world, and would be the
wonder of the universe."
"My good mother," said the princess, "what is a roc, and where may one
get an egg?"
"Princess, it is a bird of prodigious size that lives on Mount
Caucasus; the architect who built your palace can get you one."
After the princess had thanked the false Fatima for what she believed
her good advice, she conversed upon other matters, but she could not
forget the roc's egg, and that evening when she met Aladdin, she
almost immediately addressed him.
"I always believed that our palace was the most superb, magnificent,
and complete in the world, but I will tell you now what it wants, and
that is a roc's egg hung up in the midst of the dome."
"Princess," replied Aladdin, "it is enough that you think it wants
such an ornament; you shall see by my diligence that there is nothing
that I should not do for your sake."
Aladdin left the Princess Buddir al Buddoor that moment, and went up
into the hall of the four and twenty windows, where, pulling from his
bosom the lamp, which he now always carried upon him, he rubbed the
lamp till the genie came.
"Genie," said Aladdin, "I command that in the name of this lamp you
bring me a roc's egg to be hung up in the middle of the dome of the
hall of the palace." Aladdin had no sooner pronounced these words than
the hall shook as if it would fall, and the genie cried in a loud
voice, "Is it not enough that I and the other slaves of the lamp have
done everything for you, but you, by an unheard-of ingratitude,
command me to bring my master and hang him up in the midst of this
dome? For this attempt, you and the princess deserve to be immediately
reduced to ashes; I spare you simply because this request does not
come from yourself. The true author is the brother of the African
magician, your enemy, whom you have destroyed. He is now in your
palace, disguised in the habit of the holy woman, Fatima, whom he has
murdered. It is at his suggestion that your wife makes this pernicious
demand. His design is to kill you, therefore take care of yourself."
After these words the genie disappeared.
Aladdin resolved at once what to do. He returned to the princess's
apartment, where, saying nothing of what had happened, he sat down,
complaining of a great pain in the head. The princess told him how the
holy Fatima was in the palace, and the prince requested that she be
brought to him at once.
"Come hither, good mother," said Aladdin, when the pretended Fatima
appeared; "I am glad to see you. I have a violent pain in my head, and
hope you will not refuse to cure me as you do other afflicted
So saying, Aladdin arose, holding his head down. The counterfeit
Fatima advanced, keeping his hand all the time on a dagger concealed
under his gown. Aladdin saw all this, and the moment the pretended
woman came within reach, he snatched the dagger and plunged it into
the heart of the traitorous magician, at the same time pushing him to
"My dear prince," cried the terrified princess, "what have you done?
You have killed the holy woman!"
"No, my princess, I have not killed Fatima, but a villain, who would
have assassinated me if I had not prevented him. This wicked man," he
said, uncovering the face of the magician, "is the brother of the
magician who attempted our ruin. He has murdered Fatima, disguised
himself in her clothes, and come here with intent to murder me."
Aladdin then told her how the genie had explained these facts, and how
narrowly she had escaped destruction through the treacherous
suggestion which had led to her request.
Thus was Aladdin delivered from the persecution of the two magicians.
Within a few years afterward, the sultan died in a good old age, and
as he left no male children, the Princess Buddir al Buddoor succeeded
him, and with Aladdin reigned many long years in happiness and
THE SECOND VOYAGE OF SINBAD THE SAILOR
From THE ARABIAN NIGHTS
Among the popular tales in the Arabian Nights collection are those in
which Sinbad, the wealthy merchant of Bagdad, tells to a poor porter
the story of seven marvelous voyages, to illustrate the fact that
wealth is not always easily obtained. The most interesting voyage is
the second, of which Sinbad gives the account as follows:
I designed, after my first voyage, to spend the rest of my days at
Bagdad, but it was not long ere I grew weary of an indolent life, and
I put to sea a second time, with merchants of known probity. We
embarked on board a good ship, and, after recommending ourselves to
God, set sail. We traded from island to island, and exchanged
commodities with great profit. One day we landed on an island covered
with several sorts of fruit trees, but we could see neither man nor
animal. We walked in the meadows, along the streams that watered them.
While some of the sailors diverted themselves with gathering flowers,
and others fruits, I took my wine and provisions, and sat down near a
stream betwixt two high trees, which formed a thick shade. I made a
good meal, and afterward fell asleep. I cannot tell how long I slept,
but when I awoke the ship was gone.
[Illustration: THE VALLEY WAS STREWED WITH DIAMONDS]
In this sad condition, I was ready to die with grief. I cried out in
agony, beat my head and breast, and threw myself upon the ground,
where I lay some time in despair. I upbraided myself a hundred times
for not being content with the produce of my first voyage, that might
have sufficed me all my life. But all this was in vain, and my
repentance came too late. At last I resigned myself to the will of
God. Not knowing what to do, I climbed up to the top of a lofty tree,
from whence I looked about on all sides, to see if I could discover
anything that could give me hopes. When I gazed toward the sea I could
see nothing but sky and water; but looking over the land, I beheld
something white; and coming down, I took what provision I had left and
went toward it, the distance being so great that I could not
distinguish what it was.
As I approached, I thought it to be a white dome, of a prodigious
height and extent; and when I came up to it, I touched it, and found
it to be very smooth. I went round to see if it was open on any side,
but saw it was not, and that there was no climbing up to the top, as
it was so smooth. It was at least fifty paces round.
By this time the sun was about to set, and all of a sudden the sky
became as dark as if it had been covered with a thick cloud. I was
much astonished at this sudden darkness, but much more when I found it
occasioned by a bird of a monstrous size, that came flying toward me.
I remembered that I had often heard mariners speak of a miraculous
bird called the roc, and conceived that the great dome which I so much
admired must be its egg. In short, the bird alighted, and sat over the
egg. As I perceived her coming, I crept close to the egg, so that I
had before me one of the legs of the bird, which was as big as the
trunk of a tree. I tied myself strongly to it with my turban, in hopes
that the roc next morning would carry me with her out of this desert
island. After having passed the night in this condition, the bird flew
away as soon as it was daylight, and carried me so high that I could
not discern the earth; she afterward descended with so much rapidity
that I lost my senses. But when I found myself on the ground, I
speedily untied the knot, and had scarcely done so, when the roc,
having taken up a serpent of a monstrous length in her bill, flew
The spot where it left me was encompassed on all sides by mountains
that seemed to reach above the clouds, and were so steep that there
was no possibility of getting out of the valley. This was a new
perplexity; so that when I compared this place with the desert island
from which the roc had brought me, I found that I had gained nothing
by the change.
As I walked through this valley, I perceived it was strewed with
diamonds, some of which were of surprising bigness. I took pleasure in
looking upon them; but shortly saw at a distance such objects as
greatly diminished my satisfaction, and which I could not view without
terror, namely, a great number of serpents, so monstrous that the
least of them was capable of swallowing an elephant. They retired in
the day time to their dens, where they hid themselves from the roc,
their enemy, and came out only in the night.
I spent the day in walking about the valley, resting myself at times
in such places as I thought most convenient. When night came on I went
into a cave, where I thought I might repose in safety. I secured the
entrance, which was low and narrow, with a great stone, to preserve me
from the serpents; but not so far as to exclude the light. I supped on
part of my provisions, but the serpents, which began hissing round me,
put me into such extreme fear that I did not sleep. When day appeared
the serpents retired, and I came out of the cave trembling. I can
justly say that I walked upon diamonds without feeling any inclination
to touch them. At last I sat down, and notwithstanding my
apprehensions, not having closed my eyes during the night, fell
asleep, after having eaten a little more of my provisions. But I had
scarcely shut my eyes when something that fell by me with a great
noise awaked me. This was a large piece of raw meat; and at the same
time I saw several others fall down from the rocks in different
I had always regarded as fabulous what I had heard sailors and others
relate of the valley of diamonds, and of the stratagems employed by
merchants to obtain jewels from thence; but now I found that they had
stated nothing but the truth.
For the fact is, that the merchants come to the neighborhood of this
valley, when the eagles have young ones, and throw great joints of
meat into the valley; the diamonds, upon whose points they fall, stick
to them, and the eagles, which are stronger in this country than
anywhere else, pounce with great force upon those pieces of meat, and
carry them to their nests on the precipices of the rocks to feed their
young. The merchants at this time run to the nests, disturb and drive
off the eagles by their shouts, and take away the diamonds that stick
to the meat.
I perceived in this device the means of my deliverance.
[Illustration: THE ROC FLEW AWAY WITH SINBAD]
Having collected together the largest diamonds I could find, and put
them into the leather bag in which I used to carry my provisions, I
took the largest of the pieces of meat, tied it close round me with
the cloth of my turban, and then laid myself upon the ground, with my
face downward, the bag of diamonds being made fast to my girdle.
I had scarcely placed myself in this posture, when one of the eagles,
having taken me up with the piece of meat to which I was fastened,
carried me to his nest on the top of the mountain. The merchants
immediately began their shouting to frighten the eagles; and when they
had obliged them to quit their prey, one of them came to the nest
where I was. He was much alarmed when he saw me; but recovering
himself, instead of inquiring how I came thither, began to quarrel
with me, and asked why I stole his goods. "You will treat me," replied
I, "with more civility, when you know me better. Do not be uneasy; I
have diamonds enough for you and myself, more than all the other
merchants together. Whatever they have they owe to chance; but I
selected for myself, in the bottom of the valley, those which you see
in this bag." I had scarcely done speaking, when the other merchants
came crowding about us, much astonished to see me; but they were much
more surprised when I told them my story.
They conducted me to their encampment; and when I had opened my bag,
they were surprised at the largeness of my diamonds, and confessed
that they had never seen any of such size and perfection. I prayed the
merchant who owned the nest to which I had been carried (for every
merchant had his own) to take as many of his share as he pleased. He
contented himself with one, and that, too, the least of them; and when
I pressed him to take more, without fear of doing me any injury, "No,"
said he, "I am very well satisfied with this, which is valuable enough
to save me the trouble of making any more voyages, and will raise as
great a fortune as I desire."
I spent the night with the merchants, to whom I related my story a
second time, for the satisfaction of those who had not heard it. I
could not moderate my joy when I found myself delivered from the
danger I have mentioned. I thought myself in a dream, and could
scarcely believe myself out of danger.
The merchants had thrown their pieces of meat into the valley for
several days; and each of them being satisfied with the diamonds that
had fallen to his lot, we left the place the next morning, and
traveled near high mountains, where there were serpents of a
prodigious length, which we had the good fortune to escape. We took
shipping at the first port we reached, and touched at the isle of
In this island is found the rhinoceros, an animal less than the
elephant, but larger than the buffalo. It has a horn upon its nose,
about a cubit in length; this horn is solid, and cleft through the
middle. The rhinoceros fights with the elephant, runs his horn into
his belly, and carries him off upon his head; but the blood and the
fat of the elephant run into his eyes and make him blind, and he falls
to the ground. Then, strange to relate, the roc comes and carries them
both away in her claws, for food for her young ones.
I pass over many other things peculiar to this island, lest I should
weary you. Here I exchanged some of my diamonds for merchandise. From
thence we went to other islands, and at last, having touched at
several trading towns of the continent, we landed at Bussorah, from
whence I proceeded to Bagdad. There I immediately gave large presents
to the poor, and lived honorably upon the vast riches I had brought,
and gained with so much fatigue.
By JOHN GREENLEAF WHITTIER.
Up from the meadows rich with corn,
Clear in the cool September morn,
The clustered spires of Frederick stand
Green-walled by the hills of Maryland.
Round about them orchards sweep,
Apple and peach tree fruited deep,
Fair as the garden of the Lord
To the eyes of the famished rebel horde,
On that pleasant morn of the early fall
When Lee marched over the mountain wall,--
Over the mountains, winding down,
Horse and foot into Frederick town.
Forty flags with their silver stars,
Forty flags with their crimson bars,
Flapped in the morning wind; the sun
Of noon looked down, and saw not one.
Up rose old Barbara Frietchie then,
Bowed with her fourscore years and ten;
Bravest of all in Frederick town,
She took up the flag the men hauled down;
In her attic-window the staff she set,
To show that one heart was loyal yet.